The Evening: Taliban, Iran in Syria, Freewill and More
January 29, 2018
It's Monday, January 29th.
No Dialogue with the Taliban
President Trump on Monday said his administration won’t engage in talks with the Taliban after the terrorist group claimed responsibility for a pair of recent attacks that killed more than 100 people, as the Hill’s Brett Samuels reports.
And, the Wall Street Journal’s Jessica Donati reports that the increase in U.S. military action in Afghanistan over the past year has been accompanied by a higher number of casualties, with 141 American service members killed or wounded in the 12-month period through November.
Dive Deeper: See a report from CSIS's Anthony Cordesman, Instability in the MENA Region, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Key Conflict States: A Comparative Score Card.
And, “The United States and Pakistan: Best Frenemies Forever?” by RAND’s Laurel Miller.
U.S. Military Revising Rules
U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has ordered a review of security protocols, officials say, after fitness tracking devices broadcast patterns of movement at military facilities around the world, including in war zones, as Reuters’ Phil Stewart reports.
Meanwhile, a Russian fighter jet came within 5 feet of a U.S. Navy surveillance plane in international airspace over the Black Sea today, as CNN reports.
Netanyahu Visits Moscow
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited Russia on Monday for talks focused on Syria, warning that Israel will not accept Iran’s growing military presence there and in neighboring Lebanon, as the AP’s Vladimir Isachenkov reports.
Dive Deeper: The Washington Institute’s Hanin Ghaddar has a new commentary, “Hezbollah Has Destroyed the Lebanon I Once Knew.”
Plus, see Squaring the Circle: Connecting Current Operations to Policy Ambition in Syria, by CSIS’s Melissa Dalton.
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
"America first does not mean America alone."
Satellite imagery from CSIS's Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative was featured on BBC's The Inquiry: “China has sunk millions of kilos of concrete into the South China 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: Olga Maltseva/AFP/Getty Images.) A man breaks through a police line during an opposition rally in Saint Petersburg calling for a boycott of Russia's presidential elections on March 18.
Meeting the China Challenge, by eight CSIS experts (including Dr. Hamre) on the key issues facing the U.S.-China economic relationship.
This Town Tomorrow
At 9:30 a.m., join the Wilson Center for “Why Think Tanks Matter in an Era of Digital and Political Disruptions,” and the launch of the University of Pennsylvania’s 2017 Global Go To Think Tank Index.
CSIS got a shout out on Saturday Night Live this week. Enjoy Will Ferrell as “Economic Fellow Jacob Silj from the Center for Strategic and International Studies at Georgetown University.”
Earlier this month, the United States announced it was freezing security aid to Pakistan in response to what it sees as a lack of action to target terrorist groups within the country. The CSIS Podcast discusses the implications of this move for the U.S. relationship with Pakistan, as well as how the country has deepened its relationship with China.
I know the Grammy’s were last night and there were some terrific musical performances—especially Elton and Miley Cyrus. But I’ve been listening all weekend to one of the greatest rock and roll bands of all time, Rush.
I will never forget the first time I heard their 1980 album “Permanent Waves.” My friend Anthony’s older sister dropped the needle onto the record and suddenly I was transported into a world of sound that I didn’t know existed. “The Spirit of the Radio” is the record’s opening track but it’s track two, “Freewill,” that took me over the edge. Maybe it’s the one-two punch of these two cuts that destroyed me then. It still does.
I’ll write more about Rush this week, but here’s a great version of “Freewill” to smile about.