The Evening CSIS: Exclusive Satellite Photos, 25 Years in Iraq, Ain’t Nothing You Can Do & More
January 19, 2016
Welcome to The Evening CSIS—my daily guide to key insights CSIS brings to the events of the day plus HIGHLY RECOMMENDED content from around the world. If you want to view this in your browser, click here.
China Steps Up Construction
Using satellite images and analysis provided by CSIS’s Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI), the Financial Times’s Demetri Sevastopulo reports that “China has stepped up its construction of runways in the South China Sea since President Xi Jinping visited Washington in September, underscoring how US efforts to counter China’s assertive stance there appear to be having little effect.”
“Satellite images of Subi Reef and Mischief Reef obtained by the Financial Times suggest that Beijing will soon complete two runways that will join a newly operational landing strip on a third reef called Fiery Cross in the contested waters.”
Meanwhile, stocks around the world tumbled to their lowest levels in months as steep drops in oil prices and renewed troubles in China heightened investor anxiety about slowing global growth, as the Wall Street Journal’s Corrie Driebusch reports.
Dive Deeper: For more of CSIS’s exclusive satellite images and analysis of Subi and Mischief Reef, visit CSIS’s AMTI.
ISIS Indonesia Attack
Life in Jakarta returned to normal on Friday as many in Indonesia seemed to shrug off yesterday’s terrorist attack,reports the New York Times’ Joe Cochrane.
Dive Deeper: CSIS’s Anthony Cordesman published a new commentary today, “ The Real Meaning of ISIS’s Expansion into Turkey, Afghanistan, and Indonesia .”
Burkina Faso Terrorist Attack
Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, the group’s branch in North Africa, has claimed responsibility for the terrorist attack in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, AP reports. For live updates, visit here.
25 Years in Iraq
Sunday marks 25 years of bombing Iraq—from the first Gulf War through to present day. CSIS’s Mark Cancian and the CSIS iDeas Lab produced a new 4 minute video today that breaks down the pros and cons of using airpower alone in dealing with threats in the Middle East. It asks tough questions of how far this policy has gotten the US over the last 25 years. Our new video can be viewed here.
In that Number
The amount of humanitarian aid that the US has donated to the Syrian people to date.
Source: White House.
Correction: Last night’s In that Number misidentified Yemen as the destination for 10 Guantanamo Bay detainees. The detainees were in fact transferred to Oman.
“It is all too predictable that ISIS will take every opportunity to strengthen its image, its ‘legitimacy,’ and its ability to raise funds and attract volunteers by affiliating with other violent Islamic extremist movements.”
—Anthony Cordesman, CSIS Arleigh A. Burke Chair in Strategy, on ISIS’s expansion.
One to Watch
(Photo Credit: Twitter.)
Fion Li (@fion_li) is Bloomberg’s new Hong Kong bureau chief. Fion has reported from Bloomberg’s Hong Kong bureau since 2011 and previously covered China’s financial sector for Reuters. Fion is one to watch for financial news out of Asia.
The Atlantic released a retrospective photo essay ahead of the 25th anniversary of Operation Desert Storm.
“Happy Birthday Wikipedia” by The Economist.
Join us Monday at 3:00 p.m. as CSIS hosts Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull for a discussion on Australia’s foreign policy and the opportunities facing the US-Australia relationship in the coming years.
CSIS on Demand
Yesterday Deborah Lee James, secretary of the US Air Force, joined CSIS for a discussion on the US campaign against ISIS, plans for peace in Syria, and the issues women face in the military. Catch the fascinating discussion here.
Check out the latest episode of CFR’s The World Next Week podcast, which covers OPEC, Taiwan, and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.
I Like It Like That
Eye-catching things in CSIS's orbit
People are talkin’ and tweeting about Julian Borger of The Guardian’s new book, “The Butcher's Trail: How the Search for Balkan War Criminals Became the World's Most Successful Manhunt.” It comes out next week. Preview it here.
It’s hard to believe that Van Morrison once suffered from a horrible case of stage fright. In 1974, in his prime, and after touring the world for 10 years, Morrison settled into a series of small club gigs. He’d hoped that the intimacy of the clubs would help him reconnect with his audience far better than the seas of people he experienced at places like the Montreux Jazz Festival.
In late July of ’74, Morrison performed the last of his small club shows at the Orphanage in San Francisco. PBS filmed the set in the interests of historic preservation. And historic it is. Just take Van’s reading of the Bobby “Blue” Bland penned “ Ain’t Nothing You Can Do.” Nothing you can do but smile.
I always welcome and benefit from your feedback. Please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.