Republican Sen. Tom Cotton (Ark.) on Thursday asked four former U.S. ambassadors to Middle Eastern countries testifying before a congressional committee what they believe are the best steps that Washington can take to counter Iran's influence in Syria.
Eric Edelman, a former U.S. ambassador to Turkey, told the Free Beacon the latest bounty on Rubin and Fuller represents a "continuation of Erdogan's effort to export authoritarian lawlessness and lack of respect for due process."
President Donald Trump signed the National Defense Authorization Act today. It calls for around $700 billion in defense spending for fiscal year 2018. That would blow right through the spending caps Congress agreed to back in 2011. Congress has to vote to modify those caps, if it wants to spend this much money on defense. And it’s not clear Republican leaders have the votes to do that.
“Nowadays, there are a lot of countries and companies that have the ability to send vehicles down to the sea floor and have them manipulate, install or take away undersea cables,” said Bryan Clark, a retired naval submariner and former Navy strategist who is a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, a Washington think tank
Australia is not unique in that China is conducting a far-reaching campaign to influence and shape opinion in the West. As Ross Babbage, a former Office of National Assessments analyst and senior fellow at the Centre for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment in Washington says, we have not seen this type of activity since the Cold War. In dealing with it, while also growing the Australia-China trade relationship, the Turnbull government is treading a fine line in a measured, methodical way.
“The biggest single problem is that a lot of Australians have not done their homework, they have not done the hard yards to get their head around what the Chinese are doing and what they are saying,” says Ross Babbage, a former analyst with the Office of National Assessments. “A lot of people assume we’re looking at a benign power. We are not.”