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Why Iran's Past Nuclear Actions Matter
By Ilan Berman, The National Interest, June 23, 2015

It would be fair to say that the past year-and-a-half of nuclear talks with Iran has not been America's finest negotiating hour. But even by the comparatively low standards of U.S. diplomacy to date, the collapse of the American position in recent days has been nothing short of breathtaking.

Don't Rejoice Yet: Erdogan Could Still Win
By Claire Berlinski, Politico Europe, June 15, 2015

For 13 years, the escape routes from Turkey's political haunted-house have been shutting one by one. Suffocation seemed inevitable. The June 7 election, which resulted in the first hung parliament since 1999, cracked open a tiny window in the attic. Turkey's hope is now predicated upon an unlikely scenario: One in which every major political group exits from that window in an orderly fashion, even as the smoke is rising. 

Turkey's political earthquake
By Ilan Berman,, June 8, 2015

Over the weekend, Turkey experienced something resembling an electoral earthquake, with Sunday's general election yielding an array of unexpected outcomes that suggest a major political reconfiguration lies ahead for the Republic. 

Keep Trade About Trade
By Manisha Singh, U.S. News & World Report, June 8, 2015

After a heated battle last month, the U.S. Senate voted to pass the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015, commonly known as trade promotion authority, which gives the president the ability to negotiate trade deals and submit them to Congress as a whole for an up or down vote, which, these days, is an essential step towards passage. The fight now moves to the House of Representatives, where passage is critical as both chambers must agree on the final text of the pending trade promotion authority bill. 

China's Linked Struggles For Power
By Joshua Eisenman and Ozzie Chung, The Wall Street Journal, June 5, 2015

The Chinese military is expanding disputed islands under its control in the South China Sea, alarming its neighbors. How worried should the world be that supreme leader Xi Jinping is making China into an expansionary power? The history of the People's Republic offers some useful clues. 

Latest In-House Bulletins

China Reform Monitor - No. 1168
June 29, 2015

Slowing growth prompts more stimulus;
China fingered in massive hack of US government



Russia Reform Monitor - No. 1984
June 26, 2015

Snitching makes a comeback;
The KPRF courts Muslims in Tatarstan



Russia Reform Monitor - No. 1983
June 24, 2015

Popular Putin cracks down on "undesirable" NGOs;
Russia hits back at Europe with sanctions of its own



China Reform Monitor - No. 1167
June 23, 2015

Concerns over China bring Japan, Philippines together;
New China hand leading Asia policy at Obama’s NSC



Missile Defense Briefing Report - No. 337
June 23, 2015


Missile defense for the Gulf;
Ukraine seeks BMD as a hedge against Russia;
In the Army, a focus on integration;
Beijing, Moscow make missile moves



Latest Policy Papers

Iran Strategy Brief No. 7: Iran's Various Voices
By Ilan Berman , June 17, 2015

Is the Islamic Republic of Iran a country or a cause? For decades, the question is one that has bedeviled Western observers. Foreign politicians and diplomats long have struggled to reconcile the Iranian regime’s radical rhetoric and destructive international behavior with its pragmatic participation in numerous treaty arrangements, and its prominent role in various multilateral forums.

Understanding Cybersecurity - Part 2 - Information Assurance
By Trey Herr and Eric Ormes , April 15, 2015

Information Assurance is the art and science of securing computer systems and networks against efforts by third parties to disable, intrude, or otherwise impede operations. It is the focus of most “cybersecurity” professionals in the technical community. The principal goals are to maintain an information system’s Confidentiality (the secrecy of information as it is used and stored), Integrity, reliability of data and equipment, and Availability, that a computer system is ready and able to function as needed. Information Assurance includes writing secure software, deploying it safely, and managing it to minimize the risk of compromise.

Asia for the Asians
By Scott Harold, Ph.D , January 29, 2015

In recent months, Xi Jinping’s China has rolled out a large number of new foreign policy initiatives. Some of these have been economic proposals such as the BRICS Bank; the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank; the China-Korea and China-Australia free trade agreements; the land and maritime silk road proposals; a massive, albeit not entirely transparent, energy deal with Russia; an increasingly effective effort to promote international trade denominated in the yuan or Renminbi; and an attempt to push ahead with either the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement or the Free Trade Agreement of the Asia-Pacific.

Redefining Cybersecurity
By Trey Herr and Allan Friedman , January 22, 2015

Cybersecurity is an often abused and much misused term that was once intended to describe and now serves better to confuse. While originally intended to cover security related issues associated with “cyberspace,” a phrase coined by author William Gibson in the short story “Burning Chrome,” it has become the byword for a staggeringly diverse array of topics. While this is frustrating, the term is popular as shorthand, so we offer this paper to identify and explain four clusters of related topics under the larger umbrella of “cybersecurity.”  Each is a distinct issue area with unique technical and policy challenges, while retaining some association to the others...