It’s no secret that Asian nations often have mixed feelings — and that’s putting it kindly — about the presence of US military bases on their territory, Dan Lamothe writes. But when American troops respond quickly to provide humanitarian assistance after catastrophic disasters like Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, those rocky relationships can improve dramatically. (Foreign Policy)
And that could come in handy, seeing as China is fast approaching the ability to launch nuclear missiles from their submarines. Wendell Minnick says that means “the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) will have its first credible sea-based nuclear deterrent against the US mainland.” (Defense News)
Meanwhile, an unknown assassin on a motorbike gunned down Nasiruddin Haqqani — a top terrorist financier and son of the Afghan jihadist leader Jalaluddin Haqqani — outside of a bread store in Islamabad. Joshua Foust examines the potential shockwaves Haqqani’s slaying will have on his family’s network, the prospects for peace between the Afghan government and jihadist groups, and the major embarrassment his death represents for the Pakistani government, which has denied it shelters terrorist groups such as the Haqqani Network, and will now have to explain how Nasiruddin could move so openly in its capital city. (Defense One)
Finally, Afshon Ostovar dives into Iran’s motivations to come to the negotiation table and discuss its nuclear program. He concludes they’re probably serious and willing to strike a deal — but the time frame for compromise is closing fast. (War on the Rocks)
“Above all, we must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today’s world do not have.” — President Ronald Reagan
Contributed by Command Sgt. Maj. (ret.) Jeff Mellinger, a Ranger who was CSM of Multi-National Force-Iraq 2004-07 and CSM of U.S. Army Materiel Command 2007-11. From a list compiled by the Warlord Loop, a private email forum for national security experts.
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