What’s next on nonproliferation and international security, in Washington and around the globe.
— May 5: With President Obama just back from a tour of state visits to the Asia-Pacific, the Air Force’s regional strategy is the topic of a talk at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. Pacific Air Forces Commander Gen. Herbert “Hawk” Carlisle is the speaker.
— May 5: Stick around at CSIS following the Air Force-themed event to catch the afternoon program, a discussion on the “Ukraine Crisis and U.S. Security Strategy,” featuring various think tank analysts.
— May 5-9: The Preparatory Committee meeting in New York City for the 2015 Review Conference on the status of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty enters its second and final week. A host of accompanying events are offered by governments and nonprofit organizations on the sidelines of the meeting.
— May 6: More think tank analysis is on tap in Washington as Clark Murdock of the Center for the Strategic and International Studies attempts to tackle the topic of “Nuclear Modernization in an Era of Budget Austerity” at the Capitol Hill Club. The event is sponsored by the National Defense Industrial Association, the Air Force Association and the Reserve Officers Association.
— May 6: The Senate Foreign Relations Committee takes up the Ukraine situation in a hearing with senior officials from the State, Defense and Treasury departments. The hearing is titled, “Ukraine — Countering Russian Intervention and Supporting a Democratic State.”
— May 7: Another day, another CSIS event. The organization hosts Cindy Vestergaard, director of the Governing Uranium project and senior researcher at the Danish Institute for International Studies, to discuss “Security in the Front End of the Fuel Cycle.” For preparatory reading, there is a March report illuminating U.S.-specific aspects of the problem.
— May 8-9: The Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization holds the 2014 Academic Forum in Vienna, Austria. The event’s objective is to “integrate CTBT-related topics into existing policy or science-based academic curricula,” according to the commission’s website. Another goal this year is to bring researchers together in the fields of nuclear test monitoring and verification technologies.
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Foreign Policy takes a look at the future of mining the estimated "100,000 near-Earth objects—including asteroids and comets—in the neighborhood of our planet. Some of these NEOs, as they’re called, are small. Others are substantial and potentially packed full of water and various important minerals, such as nickel, cobalt, and iron. One day, advocates believe, those objects will be tapped by variations on the equipment used in the coal mines of Kentucky or in the diamond mines of Africa. And for immense gain: According to industry experts, the contents of a single asteroid could be worth trillions of dollars." But the technology to get us there is only the first step. Experts say "a multinational body might emerge" to manage rights to NEOs, as well as a body of law, including an international court.
Not to be outdone by Jeffrey Goldberg's recent piece in The Atlantic about President Obama's foreign policy, the New York Times Magazine checks in with a longread on the president's economic legacy. In it, Obama is cognizant that the economic reality--73 straight months of growth--isn't matched by public perceptions. Some of that, he says, is due to a constant drumbeat from the right that "that denies any progress." But he also accepts some blame himself. “I mean, the truth of the matter is that if we had been able to more effectively communicate all the steps we had taken to the swing voter,” he said, “then we might have maintained a majority in the House or the Senate.”
Ronald Reagan's children and political allies took to the media and Twitter this week to chide funnyman Will Ferrell for his plans to play a dementia-addled Reagan in his second term in a new comedy entitled Reagan. In an open letter, Reagan's daughter Patti Davis tells Ferrell, who's also a producer on the movie, “Perhaps for your comedy you would like to visit some dementia facilities. I have—I didn’t find anything comedic there, and my hope would be that if you’re a decent human being, you wouldn’t either.” Michael Reagan, the president's son, tweeted, "What an Outrag....Alzheimers is not joke...It kills..You should be ashamed all of you." And former Rep. Joe Walsh called it an example of "Hollywood taking a shot at conservatives again."
In a sign that she’s ready to put a longer-than-expected primary battle behind her, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D) is no longer going on the air in upcoming primary states. “Team Clinton hasn’t spent a single cent in … California, Indiana, Kentucky, Oregon and West Virginia, while” Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) “campaign has spent a little more than $1 million in those same states.” Meanwhile, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Sanders’ "lone backer in the Senate, said the candidate should end his presidential campaign if he’s losing to Hillary Clinton after the primary season concludes in June, breaking sharply with the candidate who is vowing to take his insurgent bid to the party convention in Philadelphia.”
The team behind the bestselling "Clinton Cash"—author Peter Schweizer and Breitbart's Stephen Bannon—is turning the book into a movie that will have its U.S. premiere just before the Democratic National Convention this summer. The film will get its global debut "next month in Cannes, France, during the Cannes Film Festival. (The movie is not a part of the festival, but will be shown at a screening arranged for distributors)." Bloomberg has a trailer up, pointing out that it's "less Ken Burns than Jerry Bruckheimer, featuring blood-drenched money, radical madrassas, and ominous footage of the Clintons."