The Evening: Iran Defiant, NK Warning, Modern Love and More
July 16, 2019
Iranian Leader Defiant
Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei struck a belligerent tone Tuesday in an escalating confrontation with the West, promising further Iranian violations of the fraying nuclear agreement and retaliation for what he called the piracy of an Iranian tanker by “the vicious British,” as the NYT’s Rick Gladstone reports.
Dive Deeper: “Dangerous Liaisons: Russian Cooperation with Iran in Syria,” by CSIS’s Seth Jones, Nicholas Harrington, and Joseph Bermudez.
Ursula von der Leyen Wins Top EU Job
Ursula von der Leyen secured narrow parliamentary backing for her appointment as European Commission president on Tuesday as deep skepticism from pro-EU parties forced her to rely on votes from the far-right and populist members of the European Parliament, as the FT’s Alex Barker and Mehreen Khan report.
Dive Deeper: “Critical Questions: Unpacking the EU’s Top Jobs Package,” by CSIS’s Donatienne Ruy and Quentin Lopinot.
North Korea’s Warning
North Korea warned Tuesday that planned military exercises involving U.S. and South Korean forces would jeopardize proposed disarmament talks with Washington, and hinted it might respond by resuming nuclear and missile tests, as the Washington Post’s Min Joo Kim reports.
Dive Deeper: “North Korea’s Military Capabilities,” via CFR.
Withholding F-35s From Turkey
President Trump said today the U.S. would withhold an order of F-35 stealth jet fighters to Turkey after Ankara received a new air-defense missile system from Russia, calling it a “very tough situation,” as the WSJ’s Michael Bender and Vivian Salama report.
Dive Deeper: “Coup-proofing? Making Sense of Turkey’s S-400 Decision,” by CSIS’s Thomas Karako.
Enroll for Fall
Now enrolling for the Fall, CSIS & Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs offer a new Executive Master's in International Relations. Information here.
Check out CSIS’s new series of video shorts: “Testify” and “High Resolution.” And don’t forget to subscribe to the CSIS YouTube Channel!
In That Number
The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps - Quds Force trains and advises a quarter of a million fighters throughout the Middle East.
"They have been a long standing and very capable NATO ally, but their decision on the S-400 is the wrong one and it is disappointing.”
— Secretary of defense nominee Mark Esper during his confirmation hearing.
CSIS's Bonnie Glaser explains the recent military provocations between China and Taiwan and what to watch for in Taiwan's upcoming elections in 2020 in the most recent episode of "What's Happening..."
The Andreas C. Dracopoulos iDeas Lab at CSIS enhances our research with the latest in cutting-edge web technologies, design, and video.
CSIS's Transnational Threats Project has analyzed new satellite imagery of Tiyas Airbase in Syria, which indicates the scope and proximity of Russian and Iranian military ties.
“The case for sane globalism remains strong,” by the FT’s Martin Wolf.
This Town Tomorrow
At 9:00 a.m., join CSIS for a conversation on transatlantic human rights cooperation with EU Special Representative on Human Rights Eamon Gilmore.
Later, at 10:00 a.m., CSIS will host a discussion on the lessons learned from CIIG in Guatemala and MACCIH in Honduras and how these organizations combat corruption in their respective countries.
And, at 2:00 p.m., CSIS will hold a panel on the outcome of the recent G20 summit in Osaka
CSIS today hosted Winston Peters, deputy prime minister of New Zealand and minister of foreign affairs, for a discussion of his country's approach to the Pacific and how the United States can enhance its regional engagement. Watch the full video here.
Mike Green, CSIS's top Asia hand, sat down with Will Inboden, director of the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin and former National Security Council official, in the third episode of The Asia Chessboard. Mike and Will unpack popular misconceptions about the application of history to grand strategy and discuss the critical place of values in U.S. foreign policy.
Listen on SoundCloud, Apple Podcasts, and Spotify
I can’t underscore enough how much of an impact David Bowie had not only on the kids of the 1970s but also kids of the 1980s. I was both so I should know. When Bowie’s incredible record “Let’s Dance” hit the shelves (yes, there were shelves in record stores back then) in the spring of 1983, all the kids loved it even if the critics didn’t. Bowie had set such a high bar that the rock intelligentsia labeled it to be unremarkable plastic soul. But it sold over 10 million albums and dominated the soundtrack of people’s lives.
I’m reading British GQ editor Dylan Jones’ remarkable oral history about Bowie right now and can barely put it down. Bowie was such a complex artist. On “Let’s Dance,” however, he went back to what sparked his interest in rock and roll as a child telling co-producer Nile Rodgers that he wanted the record to sound like Little Richard.
I always thought “Let’s Dance” could easily have been titled “Modern Love,” the albums’ opening track. It’s such a groove.