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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 »

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Foreign Policy is Not a 'CSI' Episode

Published by: John Bolton

President Obama's response to the July 17 attack on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 has followed a well-established pattern. Viewing international affairs through the confining prism of legal procedures and restraints, Mr. Obama is treating this terrorist act—which even such a stalwart supporter of the president as Sen. Carl Levin called "an act of war"—as something akin to a police homicide investigation.

Mr. Obama has unfortunately dwelled on getting international forensic experts to the crash site instead of emphasizing the vital strategic lessons to be drawn from this terrible episode. He did warn on Friday and again on Monday of unspecified steps that would be taken—no doubt after the criminal-justice approach plays out—but his vague incantations about "consequences" are also familiar. Red lines ultimately prove illusory with this president, retribution never materializes, and American lassitude and disinterest approach surreal levels.

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Iraq: Islamic State Financing Caliphate by Smuggling Oil

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

Islamic State militants seized four small oilfields when they swept through north Iraq last month and are now selling crude oil and gasoline from them to finance their newly declared “caliphate.”

Near the northern city of Mosul, the Islamic State has taken over the Najma and Qayara fields, while further south near Tikrit it overran the Himreen and Ajil fields during its two-day sweep through northern Iraq in mid-June.

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Kerry: 'Hamas Has a Fundamental Choice'

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

With Israel pressing its military offensive in the Gaza Strip, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says the humanitarian crisis in Gaza is growing worse by the day, but it is up to Hamas to stop that suffering by agreeing to an Egyptian-led cease-fire. 

In Cairo Tuesday to meet with Egyptian and Arab League officials, Kerry said Egypt is offering a framework for the international community to help end the fighting in Gaza and return to a 2012 cease-fire between Israel and Hamas.

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Turkey PM: Obama Relations Strained by Syria

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan suggests his relations with U.S. President Barack Obama have diminished, saying he is disappointed about not getting direct results on the crisis in Syria. Erdogan is believed to have wanted direct U.S., military intervention in Syria.

Erdogan told Turkish media he used to call Obama directly, but now leaves conversations on Syria to the two countries' foreign ministers. He said he speaks directly with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden on the Iraqi crisis.

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Bulgaria Calls for More NATO Troops in Southeastern Europe

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

Bulgaria called for more NATO troops in southeastern Europe and the Black Sea, as well as more joint military exercises, to improve security in the region after Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimea.

An ex-communist state on the Black Sea, Bulgaria was a close Cold War ally of Moscow but joined NATO in 2004 and the European Union three years later.

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Troubled Chinese Steel Makers Lose Lifeline of Cheap Credit

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

In Tangshan, a polluted industrial Chinese city that produces more steel a year than the entire United States, the Xinming Steel Pipe Plant shut earlier this month leaving more than 400 workers and a host of creditors unpaid.

The turmoil at the firm shows how huge overcapacity is pushing scores of similar steel enterprises to the brink of bankruptcy. Unlike in the past, however, provincial governments are now unwilling or unable to bail them out.

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Exxon Oil Rig Enters Uncharted Waters of Russian Political Storm

Published by: American Security Council Foundation ASCF

An ordinary, long-scheduled journey of an oil drilling rig into Arctic waters is turning into a major political exercise, attracting international scrutiny and creating a dilemma for ExxonMobil Corp.

Exxon, the top U.S. oil major and the world's most valued oil company, is bringing the rig, called West Alpha, from Norway to the Russian Arctic. It is hoping for a major discovery in the Kara Sea with Russian partner Rosneft Oil Co.

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