1 April 2019

US employers, Indian employees—everybody wants a piece of Canada

By Ananya Bhattacharya

More than six in 10 American employers consider Canada’s immigration policy to be more favourable than that of the US, and plan to expand their business there, Chicago-based Envoy Global said in the fourth edition of its global immigration trends report released this month. Over 400 HR professionals were surveyed from Nov. 27 to Dec. 17, 2018.

“Canada has been using friendly immigration policies as one of its key tools to aggressively attract tech companies,” the report said. Recently, it announced a plan to bring 350,000 foreign nationals into the country annually between now and 2021, amounting to approximately 1% of its total population by then.

A fifth of the employers in the survey said they already have at least one office in Canada, while 38% are thinking of expanding to the country.

To increase their presence in India, companies are not only sending their existing employees, but also hiring talent there.


PANKAJ KUMAR DRIVES his autorickshaw up to a charging station in a covered parking lot in Gurugram, a satellite city of New Delhi. He flips open a lid on the side of the box that was the driver’s seat. One at a time, he pulls out the two batteries powering the small vehicle, each about a foot high, five inches wide, and weighing 26 pounds. Kumar taps his key fob on the station, a large black box a bit shorter and wider than a vending machine. A locker pops open, revealing a fully charged battery. He pops it in, then repeats the action for the second battery. After just a few minutes of downtime, Kumar and his electric ride are back on the road, fully charged and looking for the next fare.

Globally, transportation accounts for 15 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, and electric vehicles are a big part of the solution. In the US and Europe, governments have worked to push people into electric cars. But in India, where fewer than four million cars are sold annually, two wheelers, autorickshaws (called tuk-tuks in other Asian countries), and buses remain the dominant modes of transportation. Which is why some manufacturers are now, for the first time, starting to power them with electricity instead of gasoline.

Can India Solve Its Food Paradox?

Many older Indians remember the painful food shortages the country faced during the 1960s. At that time, India had to rely on food shipments from the U.S. under a controversial program named Public Law 480. It enabled the U.S. to support food-deficient, cash-poor countries. However, when the U.S. suspended food shipments because of political differences, it set India on a mission to achieve self-sufficiency in food. Today, the country has become a net exporter of food grains and is among the world’s largest producers of wheat, rice and other crops.

This success, however, masks widespread distress across rural India. Agricultural policies aimed at holding down the prices of farm products have in many cases resulted in severe economic hardship, leading to farmer suicides.

This paradox of plentiful food production and impoverished farmers needs to be solved. To do this, government policies will need to encourage investment in technological innovation, notes Ashok Gulati, professor for agriculture at the Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations, a not-for-profit research organization based in New Delhi.

Looking Ahead: India, China and the UNSC Seat Conundrum

By: B. Shruti Rao

As the proposal to designate Masood Azhar under the 1267 Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee of UNSC was halted by China once again, India found itself in a piquant position for the fourth time in a row. Even after repeated bids and diplomatic initiatives from India, China continued to insouciantly exploit its veto power as a Permanent Member of the United Nation’s Security Council. China’s intransigent stance against the national security interests of India, despite global pressure, has to be studied under the light of history, in how an infant democracy, but a gargantuan civilization cheated itself out of a better future.

Ghosts of 1955

What necessitates cognizance is the fact that in the year 1955 both the United States and the Soviet Union had initiated a dialogue with India expressing support for a permanent seat for it in the United Nations Security Council. On August 2, 1955, Prime Minister Nehru, in his fortnightly letters to Chief Ministers had unambiguously mentioned of an ‘informal offer made by the US for a UNSC seat for India’ which he had rejected.[i] The United States was not the only country to make this offer that year. On June 22, 1955, even the Soviet Prime Minister Nikolai Bulganin made an offer to Nehru in Moscow, proposing ‘India's inclusion as the sixth member of the Security Council.’ Nehru had turned that down saying ‘We feel that this should not be done till the question of China's admission and possibly of others is first solved. I feel that we should first concentrate on getting China admitted.’[ii]

Why India lost US GSP benefits

Amitendu Palit

The US has terminated GSP benefits for India in spite of both countries engaging extensively on trade in recent months. The new US criteria for eligibility would have made India’s continuation as a beneficiary highly unlikely. The US’ frustration over some of India’s restrictive policies, like in e-commerce, also ensured this outcome. A bilateral trade package, while not impossible, will need major concessions by India and is not feasible before elections. The US is terminating benefits extended to India under the Generalized Systems of Preferences (GSP) programme as announced on 4 March 2019. The GSP allows more than 3,500 exports, from 121 developing countries and territories, duty-free access in the US market. 

Indian exports have benefitted the most from the US GSP, among all eligible developing countries. Around US$5.7 billion (S$ 7.7 billion) of exports by India to the US in 2017 were under the GSP, amounting to 13 per cent of total Indian exports to the US. Though the proportion was less than the 21.5 per cent for Turkey – another major beneficiary of US GSP whose preferences were withdrawn along with India’s – it was more than the 10.7 per cent for Indonesia, whose GSP eligibility is under review. Scrapping GSP benefits for India was not entirely unexpected. The US is reviewing several GSP beneficiaries with the initial reviews focusing on Asian countries. India, along with Indonesia and Kazakhstan, were chosen for review in April 2018. Turkey’s review commenced in August 2018.

Afghan Forces Could Turn Huns On Kabul Without U.S. Air Support, Cash and Troops, Among Other Warnings

by Kyle Rempfer

Afghanistan remains dependent on the U.S.-led coalition to combat insurgencies, pay Afghan troops, maintain oversight of corruption and generally just prevent the country from devolving into chaos.

That doesn’t bode well for the peace negotiations currently underway between U.S. and Taliban diplomatic teams.

A new series of warnings were introduced by John F. Sopko, the special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction, ahead of the release of SIGAR’s 2019 “High-Risk List” report.

SIGAR has made two previous High-Risk List reports, Sopko said, but this one is unique due to the ongoing peace negotiations to end America’s longest war.

The list is meant to highlight threats to what the U.S. and Afghan government have achieved after nearly two decades of conflict, more than 2,400 U.S. troop deaths and more than $780 billion spent on the country.

Taliban Kill Police Officers, Including a Chief, in Afghan City

By Nesar Azadzoi and Rod Nordland

GHAZNI, Afghanistan — At least nine police officers, including a local police chief, were killed in a Taliban attack in the southeastern provincial capital of Ghazni on Friday, according to Afghan officials.

It was one of the worst attacks in Ghazni since the Taliban tried to take the city in August, an assault that Afghan forces beat back with the help of American Special Operations troops and heavy airstrikes.

In the attack on Friday, which began before dawn and lasted three hours, the insurgents overran two security outposts in Ghazni’s third police district, killing the district chief and eight other police officers, according to Mohammed Arif Noori, the spokesman for the governor of Ghazni Province.

Escalating the US Air War in Afghanistan Isn’t Working


The dramatic increase in U.S. airstrikes that began last year has brought the country no closer to peace. In fact, Afghan soldiers, police, and civilians are dying at record rates.

A U.S. airstrike in the Kunduz province of Afghanistan on Saturday killed 13 civilians, the United Nations reported Monday. Ten of them were children, all from the same extended family. One day earlier, on Friday, two American soldiers were killed, also in Kunduz, both felled by small-arms fire. The Pentagon released their identities Sunday: Sgt. 1st Class Will D. Lindsay, 33, from Colorado, and Spc. Joseph P. Collette, 29, from Ohio. And though we don’t know exactly how many Afghan soldiers and police officers were killed on each of those days, as those figures are now kept secret, a New York Times report in September put their average fatalities at a shocking “30 to 40” every single day.

This is the state of Afghanistan in 2019. Civilian casualties are at a record high; U.S. troops remain in harm’s way as our air war dramatically escalates; and the United States’ longest war in history—waged at an enormous cost in blood and treasure both—has failed to achieve for Afghanistan anything resembling a stable peace.

The Fatemiyoun Army: Reintegration into Afghan Society

Ahmad Shuja Jamal

Since 2013, as many as 50,000 Afghans have fought in Syria as part of the Fatemiyoun, a pro-Assad force organized by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps. Based on field interviews with former fighters and their families, this Special Report examines the motivations of members of the Afghan Shia Hazara communities who joined the Fatemiyoun as well as the economic and political challenges of reintegrating them into Afghan society.


The Fatemiyoun, an Iranian-backed military force that has fought in Syria since 2013, is estimated to number in the tens of thousands and draws its membership primarily from Shia Afghan communities in Iran and Afghanistan.

Recruits are mostly in their twenties and thirties who are motivated mainly by economic deprivation and vulnerabilities due to their migrant status and, to a lesser degree, by religious sentiments and a sense of youthful military adventurism.

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction: High-Risk List

Anthony H. Cordesman: Ladies and gentlemen, I hope you will forgive me if we begin more or less on time. I realize that’s not appropriate at any kind of meeting like this, but we quite seriously I think have a very important subject.

Anthony H. Cordesman: I don’t really believe I need to introduce John Sopko. The work that he and SIGAR have done I think all of us know and understand.

Anthony H. Cordesman: You certainly do not need to hear from me about the importance of this subject and the timing. We, frankly, do not know what our strategy is going to be in this country. We do not know whether we are leaving or staying. We don’t know how we are going to deal with the problems and plan for a withdrawal or a peace. We do not have any clear plan for staying. And it is clear from the current defense budget submission and from the budget submission from the State Department that there is no clear focus as yet as to what our role will be.

Anthony H. Cordesman: And I think what is particularly important – and I will make a brief commercial for this report – is that, quite frankly, we need to understand this country better. We need to have a public understanding in the U.S. not simply of figures like the U.S. troop levels, but what is happening to the Afghan forces, what is happening to the Afghan government, and what is happening to the Afghan economy. And I can’t think of anyone who can provide a better summary than John. So, John, let me just introduce you now.

John F. Sopko: Thank you very much for those kind comments, Tony, and also for the invitation to be here at CSIS.

John F. Sopko: Tony and I, as many of you may know, go back a long ways, been a longtime friend and associate. We actually are both two fugitives from the Russell Senate Office Building. (Laughter.) When I was running investigations for Senator Sam Nunn for 15 years down there, Tony was around the corner advising Senator McCain on national security issues. So it’s a pleasure. When I look this job nearly seven years ago, he was one of the first people I called up and said: Help! What is going on there and what do I need to know?

South China Sea: The Wailing Of The Warmongers – Analysis

Mark J. Valencia

Warmongering is the encouragement of aggression toward other countries. There is certainly no shortage of it blaring from both China and the U.S. regarding the South China Sea.

Indeed a recent public tit-for-tat illustrates both the danger of such public advocacy and of taking it seriously. In China several People’s Liberation Army academicians called for attacks on U.S. Navy ships operating provocatively in the South China Sea. https://americanmilitarynews.com/2018/12/chinese-senior-military-official-calls-for-attacks-on-us-ships-in-south-china-sea/;https://www.navytimes.com/news/your-navy/2019/01/04/well-see-how-frightened-america-is-chinese-admiral-says-sinking-us-carriers-k

Based on these statements and a series of actions, Kerry Gershaneck and James Fanell, two retired US military officers turned pundits, concluded that China “appears to be calling for war”. https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/how-china-began-world-war-iii-south-china-sea-47802 They responded in kind with a catchy title and a clever construct– “How China Began World War III in the South China Sea”. Their piece demonizes China and hypes the “China threat.” It is so blatantly one-sided that it loses its effect and begs a response.

China Brief

During each year’s full session of the NPC, it has become standard practice for the People’s Republic of China (PRC) Premier—the official in charge of the PRC State Council, and the leading figure in managing national macroeconomic policy—to present a lengthy “government work report” ( zhengfu gongzuo baogao, 政府工作报告). This annual report both extolls the state’s achievements over the course of the previous year, and lays out policy priorities for the year ahead. This year was no exception, and the opening of the NPC on March 5th was accompanied both by public release of the report, and a major speech by Premier Li Keqiang summarizing its contents. Li’s speech ranged across a broad range of policy matters, but economic policy was at the core. This year, Li’s comments were noteworthy for hinting at deep concerns regarding the linkage between the country’s economic direction and the security of the regime. 

China Is Burning Books Again


The year is 1925, and Shanghai is in flux. Communists, Nationalists, and Triad gangsters are all fighting for control of this vice-laden city, and one “preeminent bon vivant,” Victor Sassoon, is fighting to keep evil at bay. Almost a century later, however, on China’s south coast, Sassoon is burnt to a crisp, a victim of the government’s ever-tightening restrictions on the imaginative world.

Victor Sassoon was a real person—but he’s also the hero of The Sassoon Files, a roleplaying game supplement (think Dungeons and Dragons) designed by Jesse Covner and Jason Sheets, two Americans living in Japan. Last week, via a recorded video message, Covner broke the news to their 511 followers—who had crowdfunded $24,183 to make the book a reality—that the entire print run of The Sassoon Files had been destroyed by the factory in Guangzhou contracted to fulfil the order. A government official had visited the manufacturer and ordered that all the books be destroyed within 24 hours, even though they were scheduled to be shipped directly overseas, with no plans for sale to the Chinese market. “I couldn’t believe what I heard,” lamented Covner. “I’d never heard of China’s government getting involved with printing issues for export to foreign markets.”

The Convenient Rewriting of the History of the 'Quad

Kevin Rudd

The rise of China and its changing military behavior in the East and South China Seas have prompted many debates among America's friends and allies across the Asia-Pacific region about how to respond.

The so-called "Quad," comprising the region's major democracies of Japan, India, Australia and the U.S., has figured prominently in these discussions as a classic geostrategic tool of "offshore balancing" against Beijing.

Over the last decade, the idea of the Quad has undergone a number of mutations. And once again, in the midst of a further hardening of geostrategic circumstances in the region, it has been attracting the renewed attention of policy makers in Washington, Tokyo, Delhi and Canberra. The history of the concept, however, is important, if we are to have a properly informed view of its future.

Counter Terrorist Trends and Analyses (CTTA) – Volume 11 Issue 03

Ahmad Saiful Rijal Bin Hassan, Kenneth Yeo Yaoren, Amresh Lavan Gunasingham

The discourse on religious extremism in the past few decades has largely been dominated by Islamist-oriented trends and actors. However, there are emerging alternate discourses of religious extremism that are becoming relevant in South and Southeast Asia – Buddhist and Hindu extremism. The March Issue thus focuses on Sri Lanka and Myanmar as case studies depicting the rise of Buddhist extremism and related intolerance towards the minority Muslim communities. The Issue also delves into two different responses to counter-terrorism by the state and community stakeholders in their bid to tackle religious-motivated terrorist groups. It takes a look at two divergent ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ counter-terrorism responses: (i) leadership decapitation; and (ii) the Danish de-radicalisation programme.

First, Amresh Gunasingham narrows in on radical Buddhism in Sri Lanka and Myanmar focusing on the rise of the Bodu Bolu Sena (BBS) and Ma Ba Tha groups respectively. The author argues that these groups, rooted in Theravada Buddhism, have justified intolerance and violence towards minority Muslim populations that could escalate further, if neglected or exploited by the state. In Sri Lanka, periodic attacks against Muslims since 2014 and the legitimacy of groups such as BBS have emboldened a segment of the Sinhalese Buddhists. In Myanmar, the violent clashes between the Buddhist majority and the Rohingya, minority Muslim community since 2012, coupled with Ma Ba Tha’s rhetoric bordering on Islamophobia, have exacerbated intolerant ethno-nationalist sentiments within the country. The author proposes the need for a national identity that is inclusive and peaceful in both countries with political leaders taking a stand against intolerant narratives to mitigate long-term unrest.

‘Objective Journalism’ Has Always Been A Myth – OpEd

By Ryan McMaken*

One of the great myths of modern journalism is that it is possible for journalists to report facts and make judgments in an objective manner. This myth has come under increasing attack in recent years as the mass media’s continued hostility to the Trump administration has become ever more fevered. Nevertheless, many both inside and outside the profession cling to the idea that “objective” reporting is possible.

We hear about this ideal frequently from journalists themselves — not surprisingly — who fancy themselves as investigators and researchers who are above ordinary human biases. Instead, they merely communicate information, making it digestible for the common man, and telling the reader all the most important information about a topic.

This idea dates back at least as far as the 1920s, and is often attributed to Walter Lippmann who explains this ideal of objective journalism at length in his 1922 book Public Opinion.1

The World’s Largest Oil Company And Petrochemical Company Merge – Analysis

By Cyril Widdershoven

The long awaited Saudi Aramco acquisition of Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) is finally here.

With a statement to the press, Aramco CEO Amin Nasser reported that Aramco has acquired a 70 percent stake in SABIC, with an estimated value of $69.1 billion. Aramco’s CEO Nasser reiterated that the “deal is a major step in accelerating Saudi Aramco’s transformative downstream growth strategy”.

Aramco has acquired the shares from the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) for a share price of 123.39 riyals, which is a slight discount from SABIC’s closing price on Wednesday. Analysts have been positive about the closing price, based on the fact that the acquisition is seen as a strategic, long-term investment, especially given that SABIC is one of the most defensive, non-cyclical segments.

Still, there could be criticism as Aramco has been looking at a much bigger discount during its negotiations the PIF. Nasser stated also that Aramco and SABIC together will be creating a stronger and more robust business that can meet rising demand for energy and chemicals products globally.

March 2019 Issue - Combating Terrorism Centre at West Point


In our cover article, Matthew Levitt examines Hezbollah’s procurement channels, documenting how the group has been leveraging an international network of companies and brokers, including Hezbollah operatives and criminal facilitators, to procure weapons, dual-use items, and other equipment for the group and sometimes Iran. Levitt details how in the context of the war in Syria, “some of Hezbollah’s most significant procurement agents—such as Muhammad Qasir—have teamed up with Iran’s Quds Force to develop integrated and efficient weapons procurement and logistics pipelines through Syria and into Lebanon that can be leveraged to greatly expand Hezbollah’s international weapons procurement capabilities.” Levitt reveals Qasir appeared in footage of meetings last month between Syria’s President Assad and Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, underscoring the importance Damascus and Tehran attach to Qasir’s efforts.

From myth to reality: How to understand Turkey’s role in the Western Balkans


In October 2017, the president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, made an official visit to Serbia. It was not the first time a Turkish leader had gone to the country. But it was the first occasion on which Serbs had received a Turk with such warmth.

Erdogan toured Belgrade with Serbian leader Aleksandar Vucic, visiting one of the capital’s burgeoning Turkish-run establishments – a cafe chain called Simit Sarayı. In the historic Kalemagdan, crowds cheered and snapped photos as the Turkish president explored the old Ottoman fortress. At an official dinner, Erdogan and Vucic enjoyed the banquet with their wives, as the Serbian foreign minister, Ivica Dacic – a Serbian nationalist, no less – serenaded the Turkish leader with “Osman Aga”, a traditional Turkish folk tune that the minister sang in Turkish.

Yet Turkey and Serbia had been on opposing sides throughout the cold war and supported different sides in the Bosnian war. For the Turkish public, the term “Serbian butcher” was in daily use throughout the 1990s, in reference to atrocities committed by Serbian forces in Bosnia. Meanwhile, Serbs have built much of their modern national identity on the denunciation of centuries of Ottoman rule. To Serbian nationalists such as Vucic and Dacic, the 1389 battle of Kosovo, in which Ottoman forces defeated the Serbs, is the pivotal moment in Serbia’s national ethos. It is not just Serbian nationalism but also the symbol on the flag of modern Turkey, the crescent and star, that is said to have emerged from the blood-soaked battlefields of Kosovo – according to a legend cited in history textbooks in Turkish schools.

5G Specs Dwarfs All Of 4G

by Katharina Buchholz

Both peak and regular use download speeds as well as other specs of the new service dwarf existing 4G/LTE specs. The service also offers improved latency (the lag from giving an order to a device and the carrying out of that order), bandwidth and a much higher number of simultaneous carriers. This improvement is especially crucial for the development of services like autonomous driving and the like.

Where exactly the new service will be rolled out first is up in the air still. South Korean mobile providers were planning to roll out the world’s first 5G network service by mid-April. Since U.S. provider Verizon has announced that it wants to launch its 5G offering on April 11, Korean providers have been scrambling to move their date forward.

If GPS goes out, the Army now has a requirement for that

By: Mark Pomerleau  

The leader of the Army’s team dedicated to ensuring forces have reliable location data on future battlefields said the service now has a requirement for a mounted device that would provide positioning, navigation and timing.

“That’s a big deal,” said Willie Nelson, the director of the Army’s Assured-Position, Navigation and Timing (A-PNT) cross functional team, because for the first time the service will ensure vehicles have an alternate source for their location, navigation and timing.

Nelson also noted that the Army, awaiting the impending signature of its top acquisition officer, has a new system architecture for PNT that would determine how the service would work without GPS. Alternate PNT systems are used when traditional GPS satellite signals are not available or have been jammed.

Huawei cybersecurity report

1. This is the fifth annual report from the Huawei Cyber Security Evaluation Centre (HCSEC) Oversight Board. HCSEC is a facility in Banbury, Oxfordshire, belonging to Huawei Technologies (UK) Co Ltd (Huawei UK), whose parent company, Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, is a Chinese headquartered company which is now one of the world’s largest telecommunications providers. 

2. HCSEC has been running for eight years. It opened in November 2010 under a set of arrangements between Huawei and Her Majesty’s Government (HMG) to mitigate any perceived risks arising from the involvement of Huawei in parts of the United Kingdom’s (UK) critical national infrastructure. HCSEC provides security evaluation for a range of products used in the UK telecommunications market. Through HCSEC, the UK Government is provided with insight into Huawei’s UK strategies and product ranges. The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC, and previously Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ)), as the national technical authority for information assurance and the lead Government operational agency on cyber security, leads for the Government in dealing with HCSEC and with Huawei more generally on technical security matters

The Pentagon is ‘Absolutely Unapologetic’ About Pursuing AI-Powered Weapons


Much criticism of military AI projects is rooted in "grave misperceptions," say current and former defense officials.

Protecting the U.S. in the decades ahead will require the Pentagon to make “substantial, sustained” investments in military artificial intelligence, and critics need to realize it doesn’t take that task lightly, according to current and former Defense Department officials.

Efforts to expand the department’s use of AI systems have been met with public outcry among many in the tech and policy communities who worry the U.S will soon entrust machines to make life-and-death decisions on the battlefield. Last year, employee protests led Google to pull out an Air Force project that used machine-learning to sort through surveillance footage.

On Wednesday, officials said the Pentagon is going to great lengths to ensure any potential applications of AI adhere to strict ethical standards and international norms. Even if the U.S. military balks on deploying the tech, they warned, global adversaries like Russia and China certainly will not, and their ethical framework will likely be lacking.

Inside Cyber Battlefields, the Newest Domain of War

Kelly Sheridan

BLACK HAT ASIA 2019 – Singapore –The nature of war has moved across land, sea, air, and space. Now we find ourselves in the cyber domain, where a new arms race will challenge defenders as adversaries adopt new tools, technologies, and techniques.

Mikko Hypponen, chief research officer at F-Secure, today took the stage at Black Hat Asia to discuss the implications of cyber warfare and how it will present challenges not seen before. The nuclear arms race, which he noted lasted about 60 years, is behind us. Today's conflicts unfold differently; as a result, we have different domains for different types of fighting.

"Technology has changed where wars are fought," Hypponen explained in an interview with Dark Reading. When the Internet was first built, he continued, geographical lines didn't seem to exist. It seemed a kind of borderless utopia where cross-country collaboration may be possible. Now, as we know, times have changed, andwars are now fought online.


Jasper Hamill 

There is mysterious ‘undocumented technology’ hidden on Intel computer chips, researchers say

Computer experts have claimed that the chips which power most of the computers in the world are hiding mysterious and ‘undocumented’ technology.

Analysts from Positive Technologies alleged that Intel chips and processors contain an enigmatic ‘logic signal analyser’ capable of reading ‘almost all data on a computer’.

The claims are likely to alarm conspiracy theorists, even though the research does not prove long-standing rumours that the NSA has hidden ‘back doors’ on computer chips which are used to spy on billions of people.

Maxim Goryachy and Mark Ermolov revealed their findings at the Black Hat Conference, a gathering of hackers and cybersecurity specialists in Singapore.

The Army Role in Achieving Deterrence in Cyberspace

by Mr. Jeffrey L. Caton.

In 2015, the Department of Defense (DoD) released the DoD Cyber Strategy which explicitly calls for a comprehensive strategy to provide credible deterrence in cyberspace against threats from key state and nonstate actors. To be effective, such activities must be coordinated with ongoing deterrence efforts in the physical realm, especially those of near-peers impacting critical global regions such as China in the Asia-Pacific region and Russia in Europe. It is important for the U.S. Army to identify and plan for any unique roles that they may provide to these endeavors. This study explores the evolving concept of deterrence in cyberspace in three major areas:

• First, the monograph addresses the question: What is the current U.S. deterrence posture for cyberspace? The discussion includes an assessment of relevant current national and DoD policies and concepts as well as an examination of key issues for cyber deterrence found in professional literature.

Nuclear Cybersecurity: Risks and Remedies

The Fissile Materials Working Group (FMWG), in partnership with the Stimson Center, hosted a 1.5-day off-the record (Chatham House Rule) Nuclear-Cybersecurity Workshop, which took place at the Vienna Center for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation. The invitation-only workshop comprised a group of two dozen cybersecurity experts and stakeholders in the nuclear industry, including operators, transporters, regulators, states, and nuclear security analysts. The group discussed cybersecurity risks affecting the nuclear sector and explored what needed to be done, across the board, to manage those risks. Consequently, the experts suggested that NGOs – given that they are wellpositioned to facilitate conversations among the various stakeholders – prioritize the following four action items:

This report outlines what was covered throughout the workshop. At the end of the report, there is a list of next steps the NGO community – as well as other stakeholders – should consider taking to reduce the cybersecurity risks affecting the nuclear sector. The FMWG and Stimson’s immediate next step is to share these findings with the nuclear and cybersecurity community, and to explore future collaboration amongst key stakeholders. READ THE CYBER SECURITY REPORT

Universities should ban PowerPoint. It makes students stupid and professors boring.

Paul Ralph

Do you really believe that watching a lecturer read hundreds of PowerPoint slides is making you smarter?

I asked this of a class of 105 computer science and software engineering students last semester.

An article in The Conversationargued universities should ban PowerPoint because it makes students stupid and professors boring.

I agree entirely. However, most universities will ignore this good advice because rather than measuring success by how much their students learn, universities measure success with student-satisfaction surveys, among other things.
What's so wrong with PowerPoint?

Overreliance on slides has contributed to the absurd belief that expecting and requiring students to read books, attend classes, take notes, and do homework is unreasonable.



The George W. Bush administration was wrong with its 2003 “Mission Accomplished” pronouncement regarding Iraq. The defeat of Saddam Hussein’s army, in fact, did not accomplish the mission. Rather, it changed the character of the war. Eight years later, President Barack Obama was wrong with his 2012 “the Iraq war is over” speech. Our return to Iraq proved it. And now, the Trump administration’s announcement that the Islamic State group is defeated, a claim that no empirically based analysis or intelligence agency can support, makes the U.S. 0-for-3 in correct strategic assessments.

What gives in the U.S. national security apparatus?

The question could be academic, except for the fact that the U.S. is involved in multiple active and sometimes inter-related conflicts. The clashes with Russia, China, Iran and North Korea have, so far, stayed below the threshold of war. Those against Salafi jihadis, however, have long crossed that threshold, with active fighting in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and other spots around the globe, to include Europe, Africa, throughout the Indo-Asian-Pacific and, growingly, in Central and South America.

The Army wants to know how to deploy cyber teams during peacetime

By: Mark Pomerleau  

A new Army unit will help the service operate against enemies such as Russia and China on a daily basis but will do so below the level of conflict. In addition, the new group could help set the stage for more traditional kinetic battles.

The Intelligence, Information, Cyber, Electronic Warfare and Space detachment (I2CEWS) — a battalion sized unit described as the “brain” of the Army’s multidomain task force — will integrate all the capabilities within its namesake under a single formation.

The Army is moving out on establishing new cyber and information related units.

“They must be present in the competition phase. That’s when they can do their best work … and set the stage if we do go from competition to crisis you are prepared,” said Gen. Robert Brown, commander of Army Pacific, where the multidomain task force is focused. “Quite honestly, we were not present in the competition phase and certainly, China and Russia are. It’s good to be able to be there to make sure we can compete and prepare for what happens.”