- AROUND THE WORLD
- DEFENSE – MILITARY – CYBER
AROUND THE WORLD
- May 5. By Margarita Assenova, The Jamestown Foundation. Russian President Vladimir Putin miscalculated again when he stopped natural gas shipments to Poland and Bulgaria on April 27. Now Russia appears to have lost the gas markets in both countries as they are preparing to permanently wean themselves from Russian energy supplies. The official reason for the sudden severing of gas exports was the refusal of Poland and Bulgaria to pay for the Russian gas in rubles instead of euros or dollars. But the Kremlin ruling on gas payments is notably based on Putin’s March 1 decree on economic measures in retaliation for the “unfriendly actions” of the United States and its allies (Kremlin.ru, March 31). Clearly, Poland was punished for its critical military aid to Ukraine, while Bulgaria was warned to refrain from sending any weapons to the embattled East European country. About Turn: Arms, Oil, Gas and Politics in Bulgaria
- May 5. By Willy Wo-Lap Lam, The Jamestown Foundation. Are President Xi Jinping’s recent turn to liberalized measures on technology firms and his commitment to using infrastructure projects to boost the economy an indication that the supreme leader has adopted a relatively pro-market approach to policymaking? At a late April Politburo meeting, Xi, who is also General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), said that Beijing would promote the “healthy development” of the internet platform economy through “normalizing control over the tech sector,” and that specific measures would be taken to boost high technology industries, especially information technology (IT) conglomerates. Xi has also stopped mentioning the goal of “common prosperity,” which has been used as a pretext to squeeze tycoons running multi-billion-dollar technology giants (CCTV.com, May 2; SCMP, April 29). At the same time, Xi is pulling out all the stops to ensure that this year’s GDP growth target of 5.5 percent is reached. The “core of the CCP leadership” has emphasized that the Chinese economy must expand at a higher rate than that of the United States in order to demonstrate “the superiority of the Chinese system” (Deutsche Welle Chinese, April 27; Radio French International, April 27). Xi Jinping Revives Pro-market Policies to Bolster Economy Ahead of 20th Party Congress
Russia – Ukraine
- May 5. By Vali Kaleji, The Jamestown Foundation. The Russo-Ukrainian war, the extensive sanctions against Russia that the West adopted in response, and the growing possibility that European border states will block east-west transit routes traversing Russian territory into Europe, including the so-called Northern Corridor of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), are all having far-reaching implications for the landlocked countries of Central Asia as well as the South Caucasus. The Middle Corridor or the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route (TITR), which starts from Southeast Asia and China, and then runs through Kazakhstan, the Caspian Sea, Azerbaijan, Georgia and further to European countries, are increasingly seen as potential alternatives to trade routes relying on Russia (see EDM, April 18, 19, 20). But another budding option is to develop and link to Iran’s overland transit networks, which offer connections to Turkey, the Middle East and Europe, as well as to Iranian seaports on the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. Construction of Highway and Railway Links Between Zangilan and Nakhchivan: The Views From Baku and Tehran
- May 5. By Paul Globe, The Jamestown Foundation. Russian combat losses in Ukraine, problems with this year’s spring draft, trouble recruiting volunteers, and difficulties in forcing soldiers to fight abroad in the absence of a declaration of war are prompting ever more questions about how sustainable Vladimir Putin’s “special military operation” in Ukraine is at its current level of manning and resourcing (Online.ua, March 2; LBC, April 28). In response, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov declared yesterday (May 4) that suggestions Moscow would use the May 9 Victory Day commemorations to announce a general mobilization or even officially declare war were “nonsense” (Meduza, March 4). Yet unintentionally, his words had the effect of calling more attention to both the steps Moscow has taken toward mobilization over the last few weeks and to talk inside Russia about whether the country has no choice but to pursue such measures. Debate on Whether Moscow Must Mobilize for Ukrainian War Intensifies Inside Russia
- May 5. By Caitlin M. Kenney, Defense One. One reason the Russian military has struggled to win territory in Ukraine is its lack of a strong corps of non-commissioned officers, or NCOs, which are more crucial than ever to success on the modern battlefield, U.S. military officials and experts say. NCOs: America Has Them, China Wants Them, Russia is Struggling Without Them
- May 5. By Associated Press, Defense News. The invasion of Ukraine means that fewer Russian tanks and other military hardware will rumble through Moscow’s Red Square on Monday, when the country marks its victory over Nazi Germany in World War II. See the weapons at Russia’s Victory Day parade rehearsal
- May 5. By IAEA. The Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Mariano Grossi, today met with the head of Ukraine’s regulatory body, Oleh Korikov, to discuss the Agency’s efforts to help ensure the safety and security of the country’s nuclear facilities during the current conflict. Update 73 – IAEA Director General Statement on Situation in Ukraine
- May 5. By Kateryna Stepanenko, Mason Clark, and George Barros, ISW. The Ukrainian counteroffensive out of Kharkiv city may disrupt Russian forces northeast of Kharkiv and will likely force Russian forces to decide whether to reinforce positions near Kharkiv or risk losing most or all of their positions within artillery range of the city.Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief Valerii Zalyzhnyi stated on May 5 that Ukrainian forces are transitioning to counteroffensive operations around Kharkiv and Izyum, the first direct Ukrainian military statement of a shift to offensive operations. Ukrainian forces did not make any confirmed advances in the last 24 hours but repelled Russian attempts to regain lost positions. Russian forces made few advances in continued attacks in eastern Ukraine, and Ukrainian forces may be able to build their ongoing counterattacks and successful repulse of Russian attacks along the Izyum axis into a wider counteroffensive to retake Russian-occupied territory in Kharkiv Oblast. Russian Campaign Assessment, May 5
- May 5. By ISW. The Ukraine Invasion Update is a weekly synthetic product covering key political and rhetorical events related to renewed Russian aggression against Ukraine. This update covers events from April 22 to May 4. All of the ISW Russia’s team’s coverage of the war in Ukraine—including daily military assessments and maps, past Conflict Updates, and several supplemental assessments—are available on our Ukraine Crisis Coverage landing page. Ukraine Invasion Update 25
DEFENSE – MILITARY – CYBER
- May 5. By Paul Lushenko and Sarah Kreps, Brookings. Following 9/11, the United States ushered in the use of armed unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, to kill terrorists. Scholars have studied the United States’ use of drones for two decades. Indeed, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, New America Foundation, and other watchdog groups aggregate data for U.S. strikes. Yet aside from UK Drones and the Yemen Data Project, few databases exist to account for other countries’ adoption of drones. What makes a drone strike “legitimate” in the eyes of the public?
- May 2022. By Melanie W. Sisson, Brookings. What strategy should the United States use to deter China from using force against Taiwan? Some argue that deterrence requires convincing China that it would lose in a military contest, a strategy known as deterrence by denial. An alternative strategy, deterrence by punishment, attempts to convince China that even if it could win, the costs of trying would be so great that they would outweigh any possible gains. Taiwan and the dangerous illogic of deterrence by denial
- May 5. By Australia Procures ESSM Block 2 Surface to Air Missile The Australian Government announced it is procuring the ESSM Block 2 surface to air missile from Raytheon for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN).
- May 5. By Admiral Gilday Explains LCS ASW and MCM Module Decisions U.S. Navy Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Michael Gilday at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) webinar held on April 28, 2022, answered a question posed by Naval News on the status of the Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) and Mine Countermeasures (MCM) Mission Modules for the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS).
- May 5. By Danish Navy test-fires SM-2 surface to air missile The Royal Danish Navy’s Iver Huidfeldt-class frigate Niels Juel test-fired for the first time an SM-2 missile off the coast of Norway.
- May 5. By Netherlands to upgrade only 2 LCF frigates with ESSM Block 2 The Dutch Defense Minister, Christophe van der Maat, informed the Dutch Parliament that the upgrading plans for the De Zeven Provinciën class frigates with the ESSM Block 2 air defense system had been changed. The initial intention was to upgrade four frigates, however, the Dutch MoD reduced the number to two.
- May 5. By Andrew Eversden, Breaking Defense. Following a scathing inspector general report that warned the Army may be wasting billions on battlefield augmented reality goggles, Secretary of the Army Christine Wormuth pushed back today, calling the report “a bit of an over characterization.”. Wormuth pushes back on scathing IG report on Army’s IVAS goggle program
- May 5. By Aaron Mehta, Breaking Defense. Sweden is in discussions with various alliance members about how to shore up its national security ahead of any Russian counter-moves to a potential NATO application, Sweden’s ambassador to Washington said today. Sweden seeking security ‘assurances,’ ahead of NATO move; US exercises on table?
- May 5. By Valerie Insinna, Breaking Defense. Add the Pentagon’s No. 2 general the list of four-stars who have now come out against the cancelation of a low-yield, sea-launched nuclear cruise missile program, as proposed by the Biden administration in the fiscal 2023 budget. Grady ‘aligned’ with Milley on embattled low-yield nuke program
- May 5. By William D. Hartung, Ben Freeman, Ph.D., Defense One. Defense hawks like Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., and Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Ala., who have long called for major increases in the Pentagon’s already-massive budget, are now using the issue of inflation to press for the addition of up to $100 billion to the administration’s $773 billion defense-spending plan for fiscal 2023. This is an astonishing proposal when one considers that the administration’s budget request is already more than $100 billion higher than U.S. military spending at the peak of the Cold War. Don’t Overinflate the Pentagon Budget
- May 5. By Naval News. In a historic moment for the region, a Freedom-variant littoral combat ship, USS Sioux City (LCS 11), deployed to U.S. Sixth Fleet’s area of operations, supporting U.S. and NATO Ally and Partner interests in Europe and Africa. LCS begins first deployment in U.S. Sixth Fleet
- May 5. By
- May 5. By Naval News. Anduril Industries and the Australian Defence Force will develop Extra Large Unmanned Underwater Vehicles (XLUUV) for the Royal Australian Navy. Anduril and Australian Navy to Partner on XLUUV
- May 5. By Colin Clark, Breaking Defense. A few days before Australia’s premier naval conference begins, American company that specializes in artificial intelligence and autonomy announced a $100 million deal for the Royal Australian Navy to buy three prototypes of large autonomous submarines, raising the prospect of drone wolf packs sailing the Pacific and South China Sea. Anduril bets it can build 3 large autonomous subs for Aussies in 3 years
- May 5. By Colin Demarest, Defense News. Anduril Industries said it’s negotiating a $100 million deal to design, develop and manufacture autonomous undersea vehicles for the Australian Defence Force. Anduril Industries in talks with Australia on autonomous undersea vehicle
- May 5. By Colin Demarest, Defense News. The U.S. military said it dispatched a cyber team to Lithuania to expose malign activity and strengthen the country’s networks amid mounting Russian aggression in Eastern Europe. US cyber squad boosts Lithuanian defenses amid Russian threat
- May 5. By
- May 5. By Vivienne Machi, Defense News. The French ministry of defense on Thursday received the first four new VBMR ‘Serval’ multi-role armored vehicles, the third ride to be delivered under the nation’s Scorpion program to replace its fighting vehicles. French military receives initial batch of new ‘Serval’ armored vehicles
- May 5. By Jongrim Ha, M. Ayhan Kose, and Franziska Ohnsorge, Brookings. As the old adage goes, all good things come to an end. Gone are the days of low inflation and easy global financial conditions. Many emerging market and developing economies (EMDEs) have recently been experiencing an unpleasant combination of elevated inflation and rising borrowing costs. At 8.5 percent in March 2022, inflation in EMDEs has reached its highest level since 2008 (Figure 1). In advanced economies, inflation is now at its highest level since 1991. Global financing conditions are tightening, as major advanced economy central banks are expected to raise policy interest rates at a faster pace than previously anticipated to contain inflationary pressures. Coping with high inflation and borrowing costs in emerging market and developing economies
- May 5. By Lucy Ashton, IAEA. Hydrogen is expected to play a central role in achieving climate change goals while helping to secure supplies of reliable clean energy worldwide. But with almost all hydrogen currently generated using fossil fuels, shifting to clean production by nuclear power and renewables is urgently needed. That is a challenging prospect, requiring the creation of a new industrial base and supply chains. IAEA to Develop Roadmap for Commercial Deployment of Hydrogen
- May 5. By Sabrina Genz, Brookings. Recent technological progress is fundamentally changing working environments by connecting physical and digital spheres. Connecting both spheres is enabled by augmenting automation with digitalization such that technology conducts work processes in a self-contained and automatic manner. The nuanced relationship between cutting-edge technologies and jobs: Evidence from Germany