American Public Opinion is Remarkably Coolheaded on North Korea
Scott A. Snyder, The Atlantic – September 13, 2012
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs this week released the 2012 results of their biannual poll on American attitudes toward public policy. The report shows a rising American appreciation of the importance of Asia and a desire for a greater emphasis on nonmilitary forms of international engagement, including through diplomacy, alliances, and multilateral coalitions working together to solve international problems.
UPDATE 1 – Netanyahu Deputy Disagrees on Setting Iran ‘Red Line’
Dan Williams, Reuters – September 14, 2012
Benjamin Netanyahu’s deputy for intelligence and atomic affairs on Thursday broke with the Israeli prime minister’s call for Iran to be confronted with a “red line” beyond which its disputed nuclear programme would face military attack. In a broadcast interview, Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor appeared to side with the United States in balking at Netanyahu’s repeated demand that it set Iran an ultimatum or risk seeing Israel launch region-rattling unilateral strikes.
IAEA Chief Wants Iran ‘To Understand the Message’
Isabelle Le Page and Simon Sturdee, AFP – September 14, 2012
Iran should “understand the message” that it needs to do more to address global concerns that it wants the bomb, following the UN atomic agency’s latest board resolution, the watchdog’s chief told AFP. “I hope that Iran clearly understands the message and engages with us on substance,” International Atomic Energy Agency director general Yukiya Amano said in an interview.
Facing Criticism, Netanyahu Denies Interfering in US Vote
Crispian Balmer, Reuters – September 14, 2012
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday denied accusations he was interfering in U.S. politics after coming under fire for fiercely criticizing Washington’s handling of Iran. Relations between Netanyahu and President Barack Obama hit a new low this week after the Israeli leader said nations that failed to set red lines for Iran did not have the “moral right” to prevent Israel from launching a military strike.
Defense: $2 Trillion Divides Obama and Romney
Jeanne Sahadi, CNN Money – September 14, 2012
President Obama and Mitt Romney have a big disagreement over defense spending — up to two trillion dollars’ worth. Obama includes defense cuts in the mix for deficit reduction. Romney, by contrast, would be the bigger spender. He rules out any cuts to military spending as an option to curb the country’s growing debt. “I don’t think you cut [the] military for purposes of balancing a budget,” Romney said Wednesday.
Lawmakers Urge Swift Action After US Nuclear Security Breach
Roberta Rampton, Reuters – September 14, 2012
Top Energy Department officials and contractors they employ need to be held accountable for an unprecedented security lapse in July at a facility that stores enriched uranium used to make nuclear bombs, top lawmakers on the House Armed Services Committee said on Thursday. An 82-year-old nun and two other anti-nuclear activists cut through several fences to reach the heavily guarded Y-12 complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and went unchecked as they vandalized the building’s exterior, sparking a series of investigations at the Energy Department and in Congress.
SEMMEL: Nuclear Terrorism Treaties Still Incomplete
Andy Semmel, The Washington Times – September 13, 2012
Congress hasn’t given its best effort to prevent nuclear terrorism. Despite broad bipartisan recognition that nuclear terror is one of the biggest threats of our time, two common-sense anti-terrorism treaties have been on the “to-do” list for more than half a decade. The Senate has the opportunity to pass those treaties in the weeks ahead and should do so for one simple reason: They would make America more secure.
Campaign Stops: Israeli Fallout
Eric L. Lewis, New York Times – September 13, 2012
It should go without saying, but apparently does not, that the tragic crisis unfolding in the Middle East calls for sober statesmanship rather than political posturing. The jihadist murder of the American ambassador to a newly liberated Libya; the carnage unleashed by the Assad regime on the Syrian people; the emergence of a Muslim Brotherhood regime in Egypt; the conundrum of Iranian nuclear ambitions — the region presents decades worth of complex challenges telescoped into real time.
Protests Against Film Spread in Mideast; 1 Killed
Angry demonstrations against an anti-Islam film spread to their widest extent yet around the Middle East and other Muslim countries Friday. Protesters smashed into the German Embassy in the Sudanese capital and set part of it on fire and climbed the walls of the U.S. Embassy in Tunis, waving an Islamist banner.