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President Reagan spoke of its significance by saying: "One thing is certain. If we're to continue
to advance world peace and human freedom, America must remain strong. If we have learned
anything these last eight years, it's that peace through strength works." Read more »

American Values
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Iran to Purchase Sukhoi-30 Fighter Jets From Russia

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

TEHRAN—Iran's Defense Minister says his country will sign a contract with Russia for the purchase of Sukhoi-30 fighter jets.

 

In comments published Wednesday, Gen. Hossein Dehghan did not specify how many fighter planes Iran will buy, or give a timeline for the signing of the deal.

 

He says that under the agreement Iran would also be involved in the production of the aircraft.

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How to Hack the Power Grid Through Home Air Conditioners

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

TENERIFE, SPAIN—THERE ARE many ways we know of to cause a blackout. You could hack industrial equipment to spin a generator out of control. You could hijack operator machines and remotely open breakers. Or you could launch a sniper assault on substations and shoot out transformers.

 

Now researchers have found another way to take down the power grid: by remotely manipulating home and office air conditioners to create a surge. It’s an attack that grid experts told WIRED has the potential to be very serious.

 

The hack targets remote shut-off devices that utility companies install on air conditioners to conserve energy during peak summer periods. Many power companies offer discounts to customers if they agree to install the devices, which let the utility company remotely turn off their air conditioner when it’s hot outside and demand for power is high.

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US Embassy Warns of Attacks Targeting Foreigners in Kabul

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

ISLAMABAD—The United States has warned its citizens in Afghanistan that insurgents are planning to attack foreign guest houses in the capital city of Kabul as of early this month.

 

A U.S. Embassy statement issued early Tuesday says the warning is based on reports it has received, adding there is no further information regarding the timing, target, location, or method of any planned attack.

 

“Unidentified insurgents are planning to attack unidentified foreign guest houses in Kabul City, possibly near the Qala-e Fatullah neighborhood. The attack could also occur near Ansari or Haji Yaqub roundabouts in Kabul City,” it said.

 
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North Korea Undeterred by International Condemnation

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

SEOUL—North Korea’s defiant stance in the face of international condemnation over its rocket launch Sunday and its nuclear test last month are in some ways strengthening Kim Jong Un’s position at home and abroad.

 

Domestically, the young leader is portrayed by the North’s tightly controlled state media as a strong leader defending the country’s sovereignty against hostile American and South Korean forces.

 

And Sunday’s rocket launch is described by state media outlets as a great technological achievement by a rapidly advancing nation that fills many North Koreans with pride.

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Reagan on Rushmore?

Published by: Alan W. Dowd, ASCF Senior Fellow

It has been 105 years since Ronald Reagan was born, 36 years since he was elected president, 27 years since he left office and nearly 12 years since he passed away. Yet his political impact is so deep that Republicans still use him as the measuring rod for every person who seeks their party’s nomination—and still wait, in vain, for the next Reagan. His national impact is so lasting that even President Barack Obama concedes, “Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America.” And his historical impact was—and is—so sweeping that the world’s maps have been redrawn and its history books rewritten because of his policies. Simply put, Reagan is a towering figure worthy of being honored on America’s most famous presidential monument.

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Iran's Road to Easy Wealth

Published by: James S. Robbins

Was the Iran nuclear deal really all about nuclear weapons, from Tehran's point of view? Or did the mullahs play the world for suckers as a road to easy wealth?

 

On Monday, Iran's government announced that it had gained access to $100 billion in previously frozen assets, freed up under the terms of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the controversial nuclear agreement adopted in October and implemented last month. Tehran is being courted by Airbus and French automaker Peugeot-Citröen to help spend this windfall, for potential deals unveiled last week totaling $30 billion. Iran has also rejoined the SWIFT international banking network to ease the transfer of foreign funds into the Islamic Republic.

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Pakistan and Afghan Intelligence Chiefs Hold Talks

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

ISLAMABAD—Afghanistan’s spy chief visited Pakistan Thursday for bilateral talks with his Pakistani counterparts on building mutual trust for effective intelligence sharing and counterterrorism cooperation.

 

Intelligence sources told VOA that Masoud Andarabi, the head National Directorate of Security (NDS), met with Lt. General Rizwan Akhtar, the Director General of Inter Services Intelligence (ISI).

 

The Pakistani side said it presented “evidence” to show fugitive Pakistani militants are using Afghan soil to attack Pakistan.

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