Problem-Solving the Nuke Missile Mishap
Robert Burns, AP- January 24, 2014
After last week’s latest exposure of the various missteps that have been occurring within the nuclear missile force, Sec. Def. Hagel has not only taken to investigating the root cause of the issues, but also to find ways to make nuclear missile duty more attractive for officers. After the collapse of the Cold war and the rise of other global security threats, the roles of operating these ICBMs have become even less glamorous than before. Hagel has publicly stated that he would go forward with a nuclear summit at the Pentagon to discuss these personnel problems, but most experts in the non-proliferation field have expressed that incentive pay or extra benefits will be quite ineffective in making much change.
Harry Reid sees no need to move on Iran sanctions
Doyle McManus, L.A. Times – January 26, 2014
Harry Reid, the Senate Democratic leader, has put his foot down (for now) on voting for the “Menendez-Kirk” sanctions bill which would inherently hurt the interim nuclear deal with Iran. Powerful pro-Israel groups like the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) have largely pushed for passing of the bill, but for now Reid, being in control of the Senate calendar has expressed, “At this stage, I think we’re where we should be.”
Top Republican Worried about No Signatures on Iran Deal
Jim Acosta, CNN – January 24, 2014
A top Republican Congressman is worried that the lack of physical signatures for the interim nuclear deal with Iran and the six other powers means Iran won’t follow through on agreements. Anonymous, the Congressman thinks the “Obama administration got snookered” and that no agreement will end up happening. White House officials have responded that the presence or absence of a signature is really unimportant—at this point, the agreement is only a preliminary agreement. Moreover, the IAEA has been monitoring the agreement and has publicly confirmed that Iran has indeed started implementing the deal.
Rouhani Confidently Asserts Israel will not Attack Iran
Jeremy Herb, The Hill – January 24, 2014
In a recent interview, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani asserted that Israel’s threats on an attack on Iran are simply “empty slogans.” Israel has been quite critical in regards to the interim agreement, with PM Netanyahu voicing his opposition and calling for more sanctions against the Iranian nation. Rouhani was quite confident in saying that Israel knows Iran’s capability, and if the Israelis did attack, “our response will make them rue the day.”
Egyptian Militants Obtain Missiles
David D. Kirkpatrick, NY Times – January 26, 2014
Islamist militants shot down an Egyptian military helicopter this weekend, resulting in the death of 5 soldiers. The attack confirmed fears that the militant group may have indeed smuggled in “manpad” surface-to-air missiles for these purposes. Even Israeli officials have stated that they have believed for some time that substantial and advanced weaponry might have spilled over into Egypt after the Libyan war. The Obama Administration has condemned the attacks.
Obama’s Upcoming State of the Union
Philip Ewing, POLITICO – January 26, 2014
Experts have predicted that Obama’s speech tomorrow will greatly emphasize the end of the U.S. War in Afghanistan. And yet, even in withdrawing troops, the threat which started Bush’s invasion of the region not only still remains, but also is reportedly worse. With the continuation of conflicts (like Syria), and the threat of terrorists still attempting to dismantle the Taliban, the U.S. has (finally!) learned that military action may not have necessarily been the answer to solving global security threats.
The Afghan Exit Can Damage Drone Program
David E. Sanger and Eric Schmitt, NY Times – January 26, 2014
In pulling out troops from Afghanistan, American intelligence agencies have reported concerns about the CIA Drone Mission. Doing so would force CIA drone bases to close down as they would no longer be protected by American troops anymore, and thus eliminating the potential for a quick response to any nuclear crisis or even weapons material exchange in the region, particularly in the Pakistani region.