The Evening CSIS: L’Anniversaire de la Terreur, Syrian Push with Russian Pull, Disco Inferno & More
January 6, 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.
Look, there’s a lot of interesting news today, and we’ll get to some of it. But by far the most interesting and coolest sentence I’ve read all day was written by Daniel Drezner for the Washington Post, who wrote,
“If you were to look up ‘experienced China hand’ in some cool, futuristic diplomatic dictionary, you probably would find a picture of CSIS’s Bonnie Glaser.”
L'Anniversaire de la Terreur
French police today shot a man wielding a meat cleaver after he tried to enter a police station on the anniversary of the Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris, shouting “Allahu akbar” and wearing what turned out to be a fake suicide belt. An image of the ISIS flag, printed on paper, was found on the man.
Dive Deeper: Vice News today published “‘Charlie Hebdo’ Timeline: A Look Back at the Attacks That Brought France to a Standstill.”
The Rand Corporation has anew report, Friends, Foes, and Future Directions: U.S. Partnerships in a Turbulent World.
Syrian Push with Russian Pull
The Financial Times reports today that Bashar al-Assad’s forces are making a new push in southern Syria with the help of Russian air cover in a move that could not only weaken one of the country’s remaining rebel strongholds, but also threaten the balance of power on a combustible border with Israel. It has been previously thought that Russia has an understanding with Syria’s southern neighbors, Jordan and Israel, not to extend into their sphere of influence.
Dive Deeper: CSIS’s Olga Oliker today authored a new commentary: “Unpacking Russia’s New National Security Strategy.”
In that Number
The number of detainees remaining in the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay after today’s transfer of two detainees to Ghana.
“Economic relations and nuclear issues are likely to remain on two separate tracks.”
—Bonnie Glaser, director of the CSIS China Power Project, suggesting China won’t impose harsh economic sanctions in response to North Korea’s nuclear test.
Source: ABC News.
One to Watch
(Photo Credit: Defense One.)
Molly O’Toole (@mollymotoole) is joining Foreign Policy to cover the 2016 election with a focus on national security issues. Molly previously served as the lead political writer at Defense One and as the Huffington Post’s news editor. Molly is one to watch for fantastic national security coverage during this election season.
Muhammad bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s deputy crown prince and the country’s defense minister, gave the Economist his first on-the-record interview.
Today the CSIS Energy and National Security Program hosted Paul Bodnar, senior director for energy and climate change at the White House, and Richard Duke, deputy director for energy and climate change at the White House. Panelists discussed what was achieved at the Paris climate talks and what comes next for domestic energy and climate policy in the United States.
CSIS on Demand
CSIS hosted a fascinating discussion with key experts on the issues affecting the future scope of missile defense efforts, including prospects for countering missiles “left-of-launch,” reengagement decisions, alternate means of engagement, integration with offensive forces, and improving the missile defense cost curve.
What message is North Korea sending with another nuclear test? Victor Cha, CSIS Korea Chair, joined NPR to discuss the latest developments in North and South Korea.
I Like It Like That
Eye-catching things in CSIS's orbit
The Atlantic today launched “ 2016 Distilled,” an interactive election news hub. I like it. A lot.
While we are on the subject of the “Saturday Night Fever” soundtrack and producer Robert Stigwood (yesterday’s smile), I’d like to discuss my all-time favorite disco tune. I love the Bee Gees as much as anyone, and they clearly were the stars of the “Saturday Night Fever” soundtrack. But in my view another group had the seminal cut of the entire record.
The Trammps are the best band to ever emerge from my birthplace--North Philadelphia. My grandfather owned a kosher butcher shop not far from where the Trammps hung out. Their song, “Disco Inferno” is in my view the undisputed king of all disco tunes. It’s not just a smile, it is incendiary.
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