The Evening CSIS March 18 2015
March 18, 2015
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. To subscribe, please click here.
Gunman stormed Tunisia’s Bardo Museum this morning in Tunis, killing 19 people in a horrific, military style attack. Two gunman were killed and as many as three remain at large, CNN reports. No group had claimed responsibility for the attack as of late afternoon.
The Washington Post explains the significance of the Bardo Museum in this report by Mary Beth Sheridan.
Dive Deeper: CSIS’s Haim Malka published a commentary today on the Tunis attack, explaining that Tunisia has been “particularly vulnerable to recruitment by radical groups.”
More from Malka: In “Tunisia: Confronting Extremism,” chapter 4 of the CSIS book Religious Radicalism after the Arab Uprisings released in December, Malka analyzes the challenge that religious radicalism poses to Tunisia’s political transition.
Reports out of Seoul indicate South Korea has some concerns about a US plan to install an antiballistic missile system on Korean soil. The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system (THAAD) would give the US-South Korea alliance a new layer of defense against North Korea. China is pressuring South Korea not to accept the system, South Korea’s Yonhap News Service reports.
Dive Deeper: Regarding another pillar of the US-South Korean partnership, civilian nuclear cooperation, the CSIS Korea Chair has issued an interim report: “A Stronger Partnership: Recommendations for U.S.-ROK Civil Nuclear Cooperation and the 123 Negotiations.”
CSIS’s CogitAsia Blog covers South and North Korea extensively and is a superb resource.
In that Number
The number of 'slave laborers' North Korea is alleged to have shipped around the world, leading to a UN investigation.
Source: The Independent (UK).
A daily shortened sampling of our signature "Asked & Answered" series.
Asked: What does the Israeli election mean for the U.S.-Israel relationship?
Answered: : Jon Alterman, CSIS Brzezinski Chair in Geostrategy and Middle East Program director: The election means less than many people think. The U.S.-Israel relationship is both broad and deep, and it extends far beyond the president and the prime minster. In fact, despite the widely publicized tensions between the two, cooperation between the two governments has never been closer. In many ways, what Israelis yearn for is a U.S. president with whom they feel an emotional connection. President Obama’s almost clinical approach to international relations, and his interest in exploring negotiated outcomes with countries that many Israelis see as their mortal enemies, undermine Israeli self-confidence. Sometimes that comes across looking like Israeli bluster. At the same time, however, the election and surrounding polling suggest that the majority political sentiment in Israel is out of sync with the majority political sentiment in the United States. If politics continue to diverge, that could pose challenges to both countries in the future.
One to Watch
Carol Lee (@carol_e_lee) is a White House correspondent for the Wall Street Journal and vice president of the White House Correspondents’ Association. Prior to joining WSJ in 2011, Carol covered the White House for Politico. She has reported on the White House since 2008, making her one of the few reporters to have covered the White House from the beginning of the Obama administration. Last night, Carol joined Bob Schieffer, Jake Tapper, and David Sanger to discuss “Foreign Policy Hot Spots” for the CSIS Schieffer Series.
Yesterday was a big example of how a small US ally can exact huge influence on American leaders. I’m speaking of course of the Irish takeover of Washington and the compulsory St. Patrick’s day dress code. As this picture from WH Photographer Pete Souza shows, the influence goes all the way to the top.
Vanity Fair ’s April 2015 issue has an important article for anyone who follows reporting on the US government, “What Was New York Times Reporter James Risen’s Seven-Year Legal Battle Really for?,” by Sarah Ellison.
Watch video of today’s events at our HQ.
The CSIS Transnational Threats Project, led by Tom Sanderson (@tomsanderson98), hosted an intimate discussion on “Libya in Turmoil,” looking at the country’s internal insecurity and trickle-down effects on Africa and the Middle East. “The 2015 conflict in Libya is dominated by violent groups constantly battling for legitimacy.”—Hunter Keith
What’s in store at CSIS HQ tomorrow.
Representative Robert Dold (R-IL) joins CSIS at 9:00 a.m. for a discussion on the Export-Import Bank’s contribution to the US economy and what the role of Congress is in supporting the bank.
After 1.5 million Brazilians took to the streets to protest President Dilma Rousseff, and as more details of corruption surface, the outlook for Rousseff’s second term is starting to look grim. Join us at 4:00 p.m. for a discussion on “What’s in Store for Brazil?”
This Town Tomorrow
So many important things in this town-so little time. Of note:
The House Foreign Affairs Committee will hold a hearing on “Negotiations with Iran: Blocking or Paving Tehran’s Path to Nuclear Weapons?” On the witness stand will be Antony Blinken, deputy secretary of state, and Adam Szubin, acting under secretary of the treasury for terrorism and financial intelligence. Click here for more.
CSIS on Demand
Apple’s iTunes is featuring our Smart Women, Smart Power podcast all week on its home page. Listen to the latest from Anne-Marie Slaughter on women and foreign policy leadership here.
I Like It Like That
Eye catching things in CSIS’s orbit
Want to understand the current and future of news consumption? Jason Abbruzzese’s piece for Mashable, “BuzzFeed’s latest vision: who needs a website?,” is a good place to start.
Senator Tom Cotton’s (R-AR) letter to Iran sparked a complex debate in Washington. But Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer always knows how to go to the heart of any debate with the most simple, logical question. Listen to Bob last night during the CSIS Schieffer Series, and I bet it will make you smile.
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