The Evening CSIS: Confirmed, Force of the Future & Yes We Can Can
November 19, 2015
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Editor’s Note: The Evening CSIS will not appear tomorrow November 20, but it will return as usual on Monday.
The suspected mastermind of the Paris attacks, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, was confirmed as killed during yesterday’s shootout in St. Denis. The confirmation was determined using fingerprint data, as the New York Times reports.
Abaaoud’s Belgian nationality has led to leaders in Brussels attempting to strengthen the country’s own counterterror measures, as Duncan Robinson and Jim Brunsden report in the Financial Times.
Dive Deeper: Today, CSIS’s Simond de Galbert wrote about the need for an all-EU response to terror within its borders: “ After the Paris Attacks, France Turns to Europe in its Time of Need .”
And CSIS’s Haim Malka, writing in The Cipher Brief, cautions that “underestimating Libya’s strategic importance to the fight against the Islamic State would be a mistake” and that Syria’s problems could quickly become Libya’s.
Force of the Future
As the Wash ington Post reports today, the Pentagon is trying to fight the Islamic State while attempting to assemble a 21st-century fighting force. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter championed the Force of the Future initiative yesterday in a speech and point paper, but the announcement has been met with a lukewarm response.
Dive Deeper: CSIS’s experts Todd Harrison and Mark Cancian, in the latest edition of CSIS’s Critical Questions series, assess the initiative and where it can be improved.
The UK government has announced it is phasing out its coal-fired power plants over the next 10 years. This comes in addition to news from the OECD this week that member nations had agreed to restrict subsidies for exports of the least efficient coal-fired power generation, starting in 2017.
Dive Deeper: CSIS’s Jane Nakano and Michelle Melton wrote a prescient CSIS Commentary last Friday, “Coal: Rolling with the Punches, on the Ropes, or Down for the Count?,” on the future of coal and whether these latest setbacks signal a long-term decline in the fuel’s use.
In that Number
APEC economies account for approximately 58% of world GDP.
Source: White House.
“Economics is the foundation of security.… Obama is expected to focus on economic integration and the Trans-Pacific Partnership at APEC and explain how those things are important to establishing a strategy to beat ISIS in Asia.”
—Ernie Bower, CSIS Sumitro Chair for Southeast Asia Studies, on President Obama’s focus at the APEC Summit.
One to Watch
Felicia Schwartz (no relation) (@felschwartz ) is a national security reporter in the Wall Street Journal’s Washington bureau. Prior to joining the Journal, Felicia was a freelance news assistant with CNN and the executive editor of the Dartmouth. Felicia is one to watch for news on terrorism, the Middle East, Cuba, and other national security challenges. (Photo Credit: Twitter.)
Reuters has the latest photos of Russia’s increasingly intense bombing campaign in Syria.
“Bankrolling the Business of Terror,” a segment on CNBC’s Squawk Box this morning, featuring CSIS’s Tom Sanderson and Laith Alkhouri, Flashpoint cofounder.
Today the CSIS Freeman Chair in China Studies hosted Thomas Christensen, author of The China Challenge: Shaping the Choices of a Rising Power. Catch the event here. And, the CSIS Energy and National Security Program hosted an event on the shifting political economy of Russian oil and gas.
This Town Tomorrow
As Russia’s regional elections approach, what strategies will the opposition use to challenge the Kremlin, and how will the Kremlin respond? The Center on Global Interests will host “Russia’s Regional Elections: Kremlin and Opposition Strategies” tomorrow at 4:00 p.m. at Johns Hopkins SAIS. RSVP here.
CSIS on Demand
Now that Myanmar’s historic elections are over, what are their implications for US relations with the country? Catch an all-star panel of experts who observed the process on-the-ground as they discuss the elements of the election and what it means for the region.
Former secretary of state and national security adviser Henry Kissinger joined CSIS’s Global Security Forum on Monday to give his insight into today’s global crises and the way forward in the Middle East. Listen to his fascinating remarks here.
I Like It Like That
Eye-catching things in CSIS's orbit
“Meet the Head of the Pentagon’s Agile New Digital Team,” by Defense One’s Patrick Tucker.
Ok, I can’t help it. A second encore for the incomparable Allen Toussaint. And the best way I know to honor him is to cite the positive message behind one of his greatest compositions.
Penned by Allen Toussaint, “Yes We Can Can” was first recorded by Lee Dorsey in 1970.
But it was the Pointer Sisters who made the song a funk classic in 1973.
“Yes We Can Can,” here’s a bit of the lyrics:
“Now's the time for all good men/ to get together with one another
We got to iron out our problems/ and iron out our quarrels/ and try to live as brothers
And try to find a peace within/ without stepping on one another
And do respect the women of the world/ Remember you all had mothers”
Brace yourself for this deeply soulful interpretation of Toussaint’s “Yes We Can Can” by the Pointer Sisters. I promise you will smile (and maybe dance a little bit too.)
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