The Evening: Cuba, NK, Cold Irons Bound and More
April 17, 2019
New Cuba Policy
The Trump administration is re-imposing limits on the amount of money Cuban Americans can send to relatives on the island and ordering new restrictions on U.S. citizen, nonfamily travel to Cuba, national security adviser John Bolton said Wednesday, as the Washington Post’s Karen DeYoung reports.
In addition, as The Hill’s Jordan Fabian reports, the Trump administration announced Wednesday it will allow U.S. citizens to sue foreign businesses using property seized during the 1959 Cuban revolution, reversing two decades of policy as it escalates pressure on the communist island nation.
Kim Jong Un’s Message
North Korea is signaling a firmer stance toward the U.S. following the breakdown of denuclearization talks, with leader Kim Jong Un visiting a military unit for the first time this year and directing pilots in combat maneuvers as the WSJ’s Timothy W. Martin and Dasl Yoon report.
And, as Reuters David Brunnstrom reports, satellite images from last week and analysis by CSIS show movement at North Korea’s main nuclear site that could be associated with the reprocessing of radioactive material into bomb fuel.
Dive Deeper : “Yongbyon: Movement of Specialized Railcars May Indicate Transfer of Radioactive Material,” by CSIS’s Joseph Bermudez and Victor Cha.
Turkey Props Up Reserves
Turkey’s central bank has bolstered its foreign currency reserves with billions of dollars of short-term borrowed money, raising fears among analysts and investors that the country is overstating its ability to defend itself in a fresh lira crisis, as the FT’s Laura Pitel and Adam Samson report.
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Check out CSIS’s new series of video shorts: “Testify” and “High Resolution.” In under 90 seconds, CSIS experts tell you what they told Congress in testimony, or use high-resolution satellite images and advanced mapping to break down national security issues. And don’t forget to subscribe to the CSIS YouTube Channel!
In That Number
For U.S. refiners, imports of Venezuelan crude have fallen from over 600,000 barrels per day last summer to zero last month.
“We Cubans do not surrender.”
— Cuba’s President Miguel Diaz-Canel
Since early March, Chinese fishing vessels—apparently part of the country’s maritime militia force—have been operating near two Philippine-held features in the disputed Spratly Islands: Loaita Island and Loaita Cay.
The Andreas C. Dracopoulos iDeas Lab at CSIS enhances our research with the latest in cutting-edge web technologies, design, and video.
(Photo credit: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images). Secretary of State Mike Pompeo makes a statement about Cuba to reporters in the briefing room of the State Department today.
This Town Tomorrow
At 10:00 a.m., join CSIS for an expert discussion on the outcome of the Indonesian elections, and what those results mean for Indonesian politics, economic policy, and foreign relations.
And at 2:30 p.m., stay at CSIS to discover more about the U.S.-Australian partnership. A panel of CSIS and outside experts will identify opportunities for economic cooperation between the U.S. and Australia in the Indo-Pacific region.
Last week, Sarah Ladislaw, director and senior fellow of the Energy and National Security Program at CSIS, testified before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. She summarizes her testimony on harnessing clean energy innovation to address climate change in the latest installment of CSIS’s “Testify” series. Watch the full video here.
I’m fascinated by the sound that Bob Dylan and producer Daniel Lanois created for the Grammy Award winning Album of the Year (1998) “Time Out of Mind.” It doesn’t sound like anything Dylan ever recorded before or since. I’ve been listening to it over the past week.
Of “Time Out of Mind,” Dylan said that Buddy Holly “was with us all the time we were making this record in some kind of way.” And he told Lanios to listen to the early blues of Charley Patton, Little Walter and Little Willie John to prepare for the recording sessions.
And then there were the musicians that played on the record. Lanois himself deploying his signature haunting, atmospheric sounds; the legendary Memphis pianist Jim Dickinson; Nashville guitarists Cindy Cashdollar and Duke Robillard. Plus Dylan’s longtime drummer Jim Keltner and his regular touring band.
Like so much of Dylan’s work it’s best to let it just wash over you and not try to overanalyze it too much. That’s exactly what I’ve been doing. This track, “Cold Irons Bound” won Dylan the 1998 Grammy for best male rock vocal performance.