The Evening: Elections Vulnerable, Russians Killed in Syria, Night Moves and More
February 13, 2018
It's Tuesday, February 13th.
Midterm Elections Vulnerable
The November midterm elections are vulnerable to the Russian interference that plagued the 2016 presidential election, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said today on Capitol Hill, as the Wall Street Journal’s Byron Tau and Michael Gordon report.
Dive Deeper: CSIS’s Heather Conley testified today before the Senate Committee on Armed Services Subcommittee on Cybersecurity on "Department of Defense’s Role in Protecting Democratic Elections.” Read her testimony here.
Russians Killed in SyriaA group of Russian military contractors died in a U.S. airstrike in Syria last week, and as the Washington Post reports, the incident appears to be the first publicly known case of the U.S. military firing on and killing Russians fighting on behalf of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Meanwhile, France’s President Emmanuel Macron said today that “France will strike” if chemical weapons are used against civilians in the Syrian conflict in violation of international treaties, but that he had not yet seen proof this was the case, as Reuters reports.
Also, see “Syria's War Is Fueling Three More Conflicts,” by the Atlantic’s Krishnadev Calamur.
Dive Deeper: “After 7 years of war, Assad has won in Syria. What’s next for Washington?” by Brookings’ Mara Karlin.
Holding Myanmar Accountable
The United States today described Myanmar denials of ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims as “preposterous,” and called on the UN Security Council to hold the Myanmar military accountable and pressure leader Aung San Suu Kyi “to acknowledge these horrific acts that are taking place in her country,” as Reuters Michelle Nichols reports.
Sufficient Evidence Against Netanyahu
Israeli police said today that there was "sufficient evidence" to indict Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on criminal charges in two corruption cases. CNN has “what you need to know.”
Meanwhile, Defense News’ Barbara Opall-Rome reports that the Iranian drone Israel intercepted over the weekend was a “copy” of a stealthy U.S.-built RQ-170 Sentinel downed by Iranian forces over Iranian territory in 2011.
Dive Deeper: “Israel Signaling a Heavy Price for Iranian 'Entrenchment' in Syria,” by the Washington Institute’s David Makovsky.
Executive M.A. from CSIS/Syracuse U
CSIS & Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs offer Executive Master's in International Relations. Information here.
In That Number
Direct U.S. spending on the war in Afghanistan will rise to approximately $840.7 billion if the president’s fiscal year 2018 budget is approved, according to CSIS’s Anthony Cordesman.
Source: Washington Post.
“The risk with such a large increase in the defense budget is that policy makers will be reluctant to make hard choices.”
CSIS’s Boris Toucas authored a new commentary on Turkey’s strategic interests in the Black Sea. This is the fourth essay in a series on the geostrategic importance of the Black Sea including: a brief historical perspective, an assessment of NATO-Russiatensions in the region, and an overview of Russia’s territorial design of the Black Sea.
The Andreas C. Dracopoulos iDeas Lab at CSIS enhances our research with the latest in cutting-edge web technologies, design, and video.
(Photo Credit: XIN LI/Getty Images). U.S. Gold Medal Snowboarder Chloe Kim during the Halfpipe Final.
“Terrorism After Bin Laden: The Local Struggle Against Extremism,” by CSIS’s Seth Jones for CATO Unbound.
This Town Tomorrow
Join the CSIS International Security Program at 10:00 a.m. for a Maritime Security Dialogue event on the U.S. Navy’s surface warfare challenges around culture, readiness, and standards.
At 1:30 p.m., join CSIS for book discussion on Boko Haram: The History of an African Jihadist Movement.
Join the Atlantic Council at 12:30 p.m. for a discussion on Boris Nemtsov, a former Russian opposition leader, and the role of power and resistance in Russian politics.
And at 1:00 p.m., join the Wilson Center for a discussion with a former North Korean official on U.S. national security and the Korean peninsula.
Today at CSIS, experts discussed how the U.S. and Japan can cooperate on global standards for emerging technologies, from AI to 5G. Watch the discussion here.
The latest CSIS Podcast features Olga Oliker, CSIS Russia Program Director, on the U.S. Nuclear Posture Review through the Russian lens. In this episode, she leans in on how Russia approaches its nuclear policy and whether the new U.S. stance matches perception with reality.
Listen here on Apple Podcasts or SoundCloud.
Bob Seger just writes great songs. Let’s name a few: “Night Moves", "Turn the Page," "Still the Same," "We've Got Tonight," "Against the Wind," "You'll Accomp'ny Me," "Like a Rock," and of course, “Old Time Rock and Roll.”
These songs blow me away. Maybe none more so than “ Night Moves.”