The Evening: North Korea, Syria Attacks, Ashes to Ashes and More
January 10, 2018
It's Wednesday, January 10th.
On the Peninsula
President Moon Jae-in of South Korea warned on Wednesday that North Korea would face stiffer sanctions if it resumed weapons tests, while crediting President Trump with helping force the North to resume dialogue and strike a broader agreement to improve Korean ties, as the New York Times reports.
According to Reuters, President Donald Trump on Wednesday welcomed the possibility of U.S. talks with North Korea at the appropriate time and under the right circumstances.
Meanwhile, North Korea’s state-run media have been hitting the “one Korean nation” theme hard, amping up its anti-Washington, anti-Trump criticism, as the Associated Press reports.
Mysterious Attacks in Syria
A series of mysterious attacks against the main Russian military base in Syria, including one conducted by a swarm of armed miniature drones, has exposed Russia’s continued vulnerability in the country despite recent claims of victory by President Vladimir Putin.
The attacks have also spurred a flurry of questions over who may be responsible for what amounts to the biggest military challenge yet to Russia’s role in Syria, just when Moscow is seeking to wind its presence down, as the Washington Post reports.
Dive Deeper: A report from CSIS’s Transnational Threats Project and Russia Eurasia Program examines Russian-speaking foreign fighters in Iraq and Syria.
First-Ever DoD Audit
Pentagon Comptroller David Norquist testified before the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday on DoD efforts to conduct a long-awaited financial audit. Although controversial, the resulting information from the audit may feed better discussions and decisions about national-security spending, as Defense One reports.
Dive Deeper: See “Analysis of the FY 2018 Defense Budget” from CSIS’s Todd Harrison.
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
The amount of medals North Korea has won at the Winter Olympics to date.
Source: CSIS Korea Chair Snapshot, “North Korea and the Olympics.”
“I am giving a lot of credit to President Trump.”
—President Moon Jae-in of South Korea during a televised news conference in Seoul on Wednesday. Source: NYT.
The Andreas C. Dracopoulos iDeas Lab at CSIS enhances our research with the latest in cutting-edge web technologies, design, and video.
(Photo credit: Kim Hong-ji/Pool/Getty Images.) South Korean President Moon Jae-in delivers a speech during his New Year news conference at the Presidential Blue House on January 10, 2018 in Seoul, South Korea.
“Everything we know so far about Russian election meddling in Europe,” via the Washington Post .
This Town Tomorrow
Join CSIS's Russia and Eurasia Program at 1:00 p.m. for a discussion on how social and regional inequality are hindering Russia’s economic recovery.
At 4:00 p.m., join CSIS for a discussion with Ernest J. Moniz , the co-chair and CEO of NTI and former U.S. Secretary of Energy, on evolving global security threats and tensions.
Join Brookings at 8:30 a.m. for “The Wall: The real costs of a barrier between the U.S. and Mexico,” a conversation with Vanda Felbab-Brown and Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX).
CSIS’s Human Rights Initiative hosted “Freedom of the Press Under Attack,” on how to ensure a free and independent media in the face of modern challenges facing the media.
In the latest episode of the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative podcast, CSIS’s Zack Cooper and Bonnie Glaser discuss the South China Sea at the start of 2018, the Trump administration’s strategy and what China hopes to achieve in the disputed waters. Available on SoundCloud and Apple Podcasts.
You didn’t think I was going to leave you this week with only one David Bowie track did you? How could I?
Thanks for all the Bowie mail from Monday’s clip. I love trying to understand the music and career of David Bowie. Endless fascination. Take his 1980 album “Scary Monsters” which probably inspired thousands of New Wave bands both sonically and in the MTV video format.
“Ashes to Ashes” is the knockout tune on “Scary Monsters.” With this tune Bowie revisits the “Major Tom” theme, and seems to be wrapping up the 1970s era of excess in so doing. Meanwhile, the video produced for the song was at the time the most expensive ever made. I’ll never forget the song and it’s strange New Wave funk. Nor will I forget the artistic video for “Ashes to Ashes.” It was always so eerie to me. But this 2000 performance adds a fresh, bright countenance to the song. What do you think?