8 May 2020

India Can Defeat China in a War By Following Beijing's Korean War Strategy

by Michael Peck

Here's What You Need To Remember: India's options include more investment in offensive cyberwarfare, long-range precision weapons, hypersonic anti-ship missiles, maritime surveillance and anti-satellite technology. Rather than expensive surface ships like aircraft carriers, India should focus on submarines.

How can India defeat China in a war, even though China has a larger and more technologically advanced military?

By essentially using the same tactics that China successfully used to fight the United States in the Korean War in 1950-53. Hit-and-run tactics in which Indian troops lurk in the Himalaya mountains, and then swooping down to surprise Chinese troops in the valleys below.

That’s the argument of an American defense expert who believes that India and America face parallel threats. While America is concerned about the security of the Western Pacific, India must worry about its disputed Himalayas border with China – over which the two nations fought in 1962 – as well as a growing Chinese presence in the Indian Ocean.

Pakistan Has China To Thank For These Powerful Military Weapons

by Charlie Gao

Here's What You Need To Know: While the Pakistani military has long relied on the Pakistan Air Force for air defense, the Pakistan Army has acquired the Chinese HQ-16 medium-range surface to air missile (SAM) for the defense of its formations on the ground. A deep modernization of the Russian Buk SAM, the HQ-16 utilizes vertical launch and containerized missiles to enhance reaction times.

As Pakistan’s relationship has soured with the United States in the past two decades, Pakistan’s armed forces have largely looked towards Chinese suppliers for equipment. While China has long supplied Pakistan’s armed forces, the relationship has deepened in recent years, with Pakistan making major purchases of top-of-the-line Chinese export equipment.

Here are some of the most powerful weapons China has sold or licensed to Pakistan.

1. Nuclear Weapons Program

Amid Pandemic, China Is Working to Lead the World Trump Abandoned

BY ANNE APPLEBAUM

Administration officials don't understand the significance of the chaos they have created in place of what used to be American foreign policy.

It looks, at first, like one of a zillion unfunny video clips that now circulate on the internet: “Once Upon a Virus” features cheap animation, cheesy music, and sarcastic dialogue between China—represented by a Lego terra-cotta warrior with a low, masculine voice—and the United States, represented by a Lego Statue of Liberty with a high, squeaky voice. They “speak” in short sentences:

“We discovered a new virus,” says the warrior. “So what?” says the Statue of Liberty.

“It’s dangerous,” says the warrior. “It’s only a flu,” says the Statue of Liberty.

“Wear a mask,” says the warrior. “Don’t wear a mask,” says the Statue of Liberty.

“Stay at home,” says the warrior. “It’s violating human rights,” says the Statue of Liberty

The dialogue goes on like that—“It will go away in April,” the Statue of Liberty says at one point—until it ends, finally, with the statue on an intravenous drip making wild and contradictory statements while the warrior jeers at her.

Tokyo Prods Japanese Firms to Leave China

By Mercy A. Kuo

The Diplomat author Mercy Kuo regularly engages subject-matter experts, policy practitioners, and strategic thinkers across the globe for their diverse insights into the U.S. Asia policy. This conversation with Dr. David Arase, Resident Professor of International Politics at the Johns Hopkins University Nanjing University Center for Chinese and American Studies, explores Japan’s recent push to move critical production away from China. 

Explain the rationale behind Tokyo’s recent $2.2 billion stimulus package to help Japanese companies to move production out of China. 

There are two immediate reasons to reduce supply chain dependence on China. One is that many Japanese firms have “bet on China” and depend exclusively on Chinese factories and firms to provide critically important goods. COVID-19 highlighted the risk of making China a single point-of-failure in Japan’s global and regional supply chains. The lesson is that Japanese firms must expect disruption, diversify risk, and design redundancy into supply chains, especially for products critically important to Japan’s stability and security. 

China’s Military Capabilities and the New Geopolitics


Discussion of Chinese intentions inevitably draws attention to the pronounced buildup of naval weaponry in recent years, with each year bringing fresh confirmation of China’s ability to leapfrog existing assessments of the size of its navy. Thus, in April 2020, China constructed a second Type 075 warship, a class designed to compete in amphibious capability with the American Wasp class ships. Two more are anticipated, as are two more aircraft carriers. These are clearly designed to match American warships, and raise interest in China’s ability to sustain distant interest by sea, most obviously in the Indian Ocean, but also wherever Chinese geopolitical concerns may be favored by naval power projection. Areas where China has maritime interests include not only the South-West Pacific, where it has been actively developing alliance partnerships, much to the disquiet of Australia, but also the Caribbean. Moreover, Chinese maritime partners include Equatorial Guinea. So, the notion that China might automatically “limit” itself to dominating a “near China,” of the East and South China Seas is implausible. Even were that to be the goal, the need to prevent external intervention in that dominance, intervention most obviously by the American and Japanese navies, but also by that of Australia, would require a greater range of naval activity in terms of “access denial.” It was that principle that led the Japanese to attack Pearl Harbor in 1941, and the modern counterparts would be seeking to thwart the use of Guam and to block chokepoints of naval access.

This approach presupposes that the Chinese wish for war, which is highly unlikely, but any policy inherently requires planning for the possibility of conflict, and that is true of the Chinese as well as for their possible opponents. Of course, that brings with it the danger that preparing for conflict might actually help precipitate it.

Reviewing Vietnam’s ‘Struggle’ Options in the South China Sea

By Derek Grossman

Once again, Chinese assertiveness against Vietnam in the South China Sea is on the rise. Beginning on April 3, a Chinese coast guard ship sunk a Vietnamese fishing vessel in disputed waters off the Paracel Islands, and ten days later, on April 13, Beijing redeployed the controversial Haiyang Dizhi 8 geological survey ship, which it had used last year to harass international drilling near Vanguard Bank, to Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ). And on April 18, Beijing announced that it had established administrative control over the disputed Paracel and Spratly Islands.

Following this new round of escalating bilateral tensions, Vietnam has publicly protested each Chinese move. But these statements have yet to alter Beijing’s bad behavior. So the question naturally becomes: beyond publicly airing grievances, what else could Vietnam do to curtail Chinese assertiveness in the future?

As I have previously discussed, Vietnam’s approach to international relations, and China particularly, is one of “cooperation and struggle.” In other words, Hanoi has consistently sought to keep bilateral ties with Beijing cordial and productive in spite of simultaneously pushing back in the South China Sea and other areas of the relationship. Indeed, Vietnam refers to China as a “comprehensive strategic cooperative partner”— the highest distinction Hanoi offers any major power partner. Of Vietnam’s three “comprehensive strategic partners” (China, India, and Russia), or closest major power partnerships, only China holds the additional title of being a “cooperative” partner — underscoring the exceptional priority Hanoi places on cooperating with its much larger northern neighbor.

Irresponsible Superpowers Must Cooperate

Amitav Acharya

WASHINGTON, DC: In the Covid-19 pandemic, neither China nor the United States has offered a creditable performance, and this puts immense pressure on the multilateral system.

Most countries escaped SARS-CoV-1 in 2003. The virus hit 26 countries and only eight Americans tested positive for SARS, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The United States and many other nations were not prepared 15 years later when a new coronavirus emerged, much more threatening to lives and well-being. The SARS-CoV-1 virus infected just over 8,000 people worldwide and left 774 dead. By comparison, with SARS-CoV-2, nations report more than 3.1 million confirmed cases, with 225,000 deaths. As I wrote in 2003, such perils, rooted in globalization, cannot be defeated permanently.

Fauci: No scientific evidence the coronavirus was made in a Chinese lab

BY NSIKAN AKPAN AND VICTORIA JAGGARD
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ANTHONY “TONY” FAUCI has become the scientific face of America’s COVID-19 response, and he says the best evidence shows the virus behind the pandemic was not made in a lab in China.

Fauci, the director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, shot down the discussion that has been raging among politicians and pundits, calling it “a circular argument” in a conversation Monday with National Geographic.

“If you look at the evolution of the virus in bats and what's out there now, [the scientific evidence] is very, very strongly leaning toward this could not have been artificially or deliberately manipulated … Everything about the stepwise evolution over time strongly indicates that [this virus] evolved in nature and then jumped species,” Fauci says. Based on the scientific evidence, he also doesn’t entertain an alternate theory—that someone found the coronavirus in the wild, brought it to a lab, and then it accidentally escaped.

Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx, White House coronavirus response coordinator, listen as President Donald Trump speaks about the coronavirus in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House, Thursday, April 9, 2020, in Washington, D.C.PHOTOGRAPH BY ANDREW HARNIK, AP PHOTO

Fauci is most concerned that the United States will be put to the test this fall and winter by a second wave of COVID-19 if the country does not blunt the infection rate by the summer.


The New China Scare

In February 1947, U.S. President Harry Truman huddled with his most senior foreign policy advisers, George Marshall and Dean Acheson, and a handful of congressional leaders. The topic was the administration’s plan to aid the Greek government in its fight against a communist insurgency. Marshall and Acheson presented their case for the plan. Arthur Vandenberg, chair of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, listened closely and then offered his support with a caveat. “The only way you are going to get what you want,” he reportedly told the president, “is to make a speech and scare the hell out of the country.”

Over the next few months, Truman did just that. He turned the civil war in Greece into a test of the United States’ ability to confront international communism. Reflecting on Truman’s expansive rhetoric about aiding democracies anywhere, anytime, Acheson confessed in his memoirs that the administration had made an argument “clearer than truth.” 

Something similar is happening today in the American debate about China. A new consensus, encompassing both parties, the military establishment, and key elements of the media, holds that China is now a vital threat to the United States both economically and strategically, that U.S. policy toward China has failed, and that Washington needs a new, much tougher strategy to contain it. This consensus has shifted the public’s stance toward an almost instinctive hostility: according to polling, 60 percent of Americans now have an unfavorable view of the People’s Republic, a record high since the Pew Research Center began asking the question in 2005. But Washington elites have made their case “clearer than truth.” The nature of the challenge from China is different from and far more complex than what the new alarmism portrays. On the single most important foreign policy issue of the next several decades, the United States is setting itself up for an expensive failure.

It’s Time for a New Multilateral Framework to Address COVID-19

Joshua Lincoln 

Over the past three months, world leaders struggling with the coronavirus pandemic have no doubt felt a little bit like pilots in the cockpit of an airplane that is malfunctioning and losing altitude quickly. They have tried to remain calm and act fast, despite not always knowing what exactly is wrong. They’ve called controllers on the ground for help and advice, flipped switches and checked internal systems, all the while reassuring anxious passengers.

Despite some severe turbulence and initial failures, most leaders have avoided a crash landing. With varying degrees of success, they are managing their way through the first wave of the pandemic, flattening the curve city by city. But this is by no means a satisfactory response.

COVID-19 Could Reignite Trump’s Trade War With China

Kimberly Ann Elliott 

The relationship between the United States and China has waxed and waned over the years, but it has felt more like a roller coaster ride under President Donald Trump. China-bashing was a centerpiece of his election campaign, yet once in office, Trump hailed his first meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, at Trump’s Florida estate, Mar-a-Lago, saying they had “great chemistry.” More than two years later, after Trump had launched his damaging trade war with China and with no deal to resolve it in sight, Trump called Xi an enemy and “ordered” American firms to leave China. By January of this year, Xi was back to being a “very, very good friend” as Trump finally signed his heavily hyped “phase-one” trade agreement.

Just three months after celebrating that deal, Trump’s rapport with Xi—and the agreement itself—is looking more fragile than ever. In the midst of a troubled reelection campaign, the president is casting about for someone to blame for the pandemic that has already killed more than 56,000 Americans and sent the economy into free fall. The administration has at times referred to the “China virus” or the “Wuhan virus,” but Trump in recent days focused his ire more on failures at the World Health Organization than directly at Beijing. But if China is unable to deliver on its commitments to import more from the U.S., which seems likely given the devastating economic impact of COVID-19, things could get nasty. .

Exclusive: Internal Chinese report warns Beijing faces Tiananmen-like global backlash over virus


BEIJING (Reuters) - An internal Chinese report warns that Beijing faces a rising wave of hostility in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak that could tip relations with the United States into confrontation, people familiar with the paper told Reuters.

The report, presented early last month by the Ministry of State Security to top Beijing leaders including President Xi Jinping, concluded that global anti-China sentiment is at its highest since the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown, the sources said.

As a result, Beijing faces a wave of anti-China sentiment led by the United States in the aftermath of the pandemic and needs to be prepared in a worst-case scenario for armed confrontation between the two global powers, according to people familiar with the report’s content, who declined to be identified given the sensitivity of the matter.

The report was drawn up by the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations (CICIR), a think tank affiliated with the Ministry of State Security, China’s top intelligence body.

Reuters has not seen the briefing paper, but it was described by people who had direct knowledge of its findings.

“I don’t have relevant information,” the Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson’s office said in a statement responding to questions from Reuters on the report.

The Covid-19 Riddle: Why Does the Virus Wallop Some Places and Spare Others?

By Hannah Beech, Alissa J. Rubin, Anatoly Kurmanaev and Ruth Maclean
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The coronavirus has killed so many people in Iran that the country has resorted to mass burials, but in neighboring Iraq, the body count is fewer than 100.

The Dominican Republic has reported nearly 7,600 cases of the virus. Just across the border, Haiti has recorded about 85.

In Indonesia, thousands are believed to have died of the coronavirus. In nearby Malaysia, a strict lockdown has kept fatalities to about 100.

The coronavirus has touched almost every country on earth, but its impact has seemed capricious. Global metropolises like New York, Paris and London have been devastated, while teeming cities like Bangkok, Baghdad, New Delhi and Lagos have, so far, largely been spared.

The question of why the virus has overwhelmed some places and left others relatively untouched is a puzzle that has spawned numerous theories and speculations but no definitive answers. That knowledge could have profound implications for how countries respond to the virus, for determining who is at risk and for knowing when it’s safe to go out again.

Analysts: U.S., China should tread carefully in case of North Korea collapse

By Elizabeth Shim

NEW YORK, April 30 (UPI) -- China plays an outsize role in North Korea's economy, but its clout in the region doesn't mean Beijing can easily intervene in the event of North Korea instability, U.S. analysts say.

Neither should the United States' 28,500 troops on the peninsula get involved in a crisis scenario, where Kim Jong Un remains missing and no one in Pyongyang, including Kim's sister Kim Yo Jong, is able to take the reins.

"Certainly, the United States should play a role behind the scenes," said Mitchell Lerner, director of the Institute for Korean Studies at Ohio State University.

"But a U.S. military presence [in North Korea] would likely just exacerbate the situation by inflaming much of the North's population, which has for so long been fed a steady diet of tales of American atrocities."

The United States should provide financial, logistical and intelligence support, but the military needs to stay in the background if at all possible, Lerner told UPI.

Trump Fixates on China as Nuclear Arms Pact Nears Expiration

BY ROBBIE GRAMER, JACK DETSCH
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The Trump administration is increasingly set on trying to bring China into a key nuclear arms deal with Russia, according to documents obtained by Foreign Policy, amid fears by arms control experts that the effort is futile and the United States is running out of time to recommit to the Obama-era New START treaty. 

For a year, the Trump administration has floated the idea of pursuing a three-way nuclear arms agreement to replace START, or the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, between the United States and Russia, which sets limits on each country’s long-range nuclear weapons. But the administration’s newly appointed arms control envoy, Marshall Billingslea, is up against a tight timeline and facing new geopolitical headwinds from the global coronavirus pandemic. 

The New START treaty is set to expire in February 2021, and President Donald Trump faces a tough reelection battle against Democratic rival Joe Biden this November, which could mean a change in administrations just a month before that—two hard deadlines that Billingslea faces as he settles into his new role.

How not to win friends and influence people in Europe

Jonathan Eyal

LONDON • "There is no doubt we can't have business as usual after this crisis", is how British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab described the prospects for his country's relations with China when the current coronavirus pandemic is over.

Foreign ministers do not engage in such undiplomatic language lightly, for there is little to be gained in making unspecified threats. Yet in many respects, Mr Raab was merely articulating a view now shared in most European capitals.

For there is a profound and genuine anger in Europe at China's current policies towards the continent, coupled with widespread acknowledgement that Europe urgently needs a radical rethink of its relations with China.

The real question is whether Beijing understands just how deep the gap between itself and Europe really is.

No European government and no respectable European politician had fallen for conspiracy theories blaming China for unleashing the coronavirus pandemic; the idea that a country could be made "responsible" for a viral infection is dismissed as nonsense.

The future is not what it used to be: Thoughts on the shape of the next normalApril 2020 | Article

By Kevin Sneader and Shubham Singhal

Dealing with the coronavirus crisis and its aftermath could be the imperative of our times. Indeed, we have argued that it augurs the “imminent restructuring of the global economic order.” As Ian Davis, one of our previous managing partners, wrote in 2009 in the midst of the global financial crisis:

“For some organizations, near-term survival is the only agenda item. Others are peering through the fog of uncertainty, thinking about how to position themselves once the crisis has passed and things return to normal. The question is, ‘What will normal look like?’ While no one can say how long the crisis will last, what we find on the other side will not look like the normal of recent years.”

It is impossible to know what will happen. But it is possible to consider the lessons of the past, both distant and recent, and on that basis, to think constructively about the future. We believe the following elements will be important in the shaping of the next normal—and that business leaders will need to come to terms with them.

1. Distance is back

The End of Emerging Markets?

BY JAMES CRABTREE 
Source Link

The story of the coronavirus has so far been told mostly from the perspective of rich countries, but its harshest effects will still likely be felt by the world’s poor. Africa’s cases rose by nearly half in a single week in April, while India’s numbers continue to tick up. Some of the world’s worst outbreaks are taking place in nations such as Brazil, Ecuador, and Turkey. The pandemic’s epicenter could easily return to Asia or move onward to Latin America.

Beyond this public health emergency lies a devastating economic threat. Only bold action from the U.S. Federal Reserve has staved off what would almost certainly have been a rolling series of financial crises for emerging markets in the aftermath of March’s record $83 billion in capital flight. But the pandemic now threatens a more profound shift, bringing an end to the very idea of emerging markets—namely fast-growing poorer countries able to make rapid strides towards development, becoming the darlings of financial investors in the process.

Some hopes remain that these poorer countries might stage some kind of a miraculous collective coronavirus escape. India’s official data, although far from reliable, suggests just over 1,000 deaths so far—a small amount when compared to more than 63,000 in the United States. Southeast Asia has been hit relatively mildly too. A clutch of theories, ranging from early lockdowns to youthful populations and warm weather, have attempted to explain this resilience. Sadly, the low caseload thus far may come down to a mix of little testing and much luck, a phenomenon that is unlikely to last. Even if they manage to avoid the virus, poorer nations will be hard hit by the global economic fallout. The World Food Programme warned recently that more than 30 poorer countries, many of them in Africa, were on the brink of famine, while the International Rescue Committee predicted as many as 1 billion infections in conflict-affected and fragile states.

Power and the Rise and Fall of Nations

By George Friedman

Last week, I appeared on a Turkish TV station and spoke to a business group in Switzerland. The same question was the focus of both events: As a result of the coronavirus crisis, will China replace the U.S. as the leading power in the international system? It was a baffling question from my standpoint but the fact that two intelligent groups would raise it means it has to be understood or, if that is not possible, at least dissected.

Perception vs. Reality

This is not a new question for me. The United States has long been regarded as the leading power and compared to other rising powers. With some regularity, public opinion, in the United States and elsewhere, came to the conclusion the U.S. was in decline and was being surpassed by a challenger, sometimes economically, sometimes militarily and sometimes covertly.

In the 1950s, there was a McCarthyite element in saying that the U.S. was in decline and the Soviets were overtaking it. When the Soviets launched Sputnik and sent Yuri Gagarin into space, many around the world were convinced of the Soviets’ superiority, and many in the United States felt panic over the lack of emphasis on science education. When the United States was defeated in Vietnam, many, including senior American analysts, concluded that the U.S. was in retreat. When Nixon was forced from office, this suspicion became certainty. As for China, the sense that it would surpass the United States economically was broadly accepted by the late 1990s and early 2000s. China’s growth rate was high because it was preceded by the Maoist disaster. Extrapolated on this basis, China’s gross domestic product was poised to surpass the combined GDP of the rest of the world, starting with the U.S.

The Double-Edged Sword of Oil, Energy and Mining in International Politics


Despite concerns over the environmental impact of industrial mining and the contribution that fossil fuels make to global warming, resource extraction continues to be a major source of revenue for both developing countries and wealthier nations alike. In fact, the amount of resources being pulled from the earth has tripled since 1970, though the global population has only doubled in that time.

Amid global efforts to reduce carbon emissions as part of climate change diplomacy, fossil fuels remained among the most prized extractives, for a simple reason: Global demand combined with the wealth they generate have historically given some countries, including members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, outsized global influence.

The lucrative contracts associated with the extractive sector help to explain why resource extraction remains central to many developing countries’ strategy to grow their economies. But the windfalls don’t come without risks, most prominent among them being the “resource curse” that can plague countries that fail to diversify their economies to generate alternate sources of revenue. Corruption can also thrive, especially when government institutions are weak. And when the wealth generated from resource extraction isn’t fairly distributed, it can entrench a permanent elite, as in Saudi Arabia, or fuel persistent conflicts, as in the Democratic Republic of Congo. More recently, the drop in demand due to the coronavirus pandemic combined with an ill-timed price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia has caused oil prices to plummet. A subsequent deal for both sides to cut output did little to shore up global oil markets.

The environmental impact of fossil fuels is driving some changes, in particular a push to develop renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar. But the transition to renewable energy sources is slow to develop, even as its long-term financial viability remains uncertain.

Terrorism Research Initiative (TRI)

Perspectives on Terrorism, April 2020, v.14, no. 2

o Introduction to the Special Issue: Violent Mobilization and Non-Mobilization in the North Caucasus

o Ideology along the Contours of Power: The Case of the Caucasus Emirate

o Exclusion and Inclusion: The Core of Chechen Mobilization to Jihad

o What Drove Young Dagestani Muslim to Join ISIS? A Study Based on Social Movement Theory and Collective Framing

o Jihad at Home or Leaving for Syria and Iraq: Understanding the Motivations of Dagestani Salafists

o Gender and Jihad: Women from the Caucasus in the Syrian Conflict

o Islamic Conflict and Violence in Local Communities: Lessons from the North Caucasus

o Violence and the Dynamics of Political Settlements in Post-Soviet Kabardino-Balkaria

o Bibliography: Terrorism in, or Originating from, the Caucasus, Central Asia, and Russia (Part 2)

o Counterterrorism Bookshelf: 51 Books on Terrorism & Counter-Terrorism Related Subjects

o Bibliography: Women and Terrorism

o Recent Online Resources for the Analysis of Terrorism and Related Subjects

o Koehler et al. Case Studies from "Violence and the Dynamics of Political Settlements in Post-Soviet Kabardino-Balkaria"

The Coronavirus Has Pushed North Korea’s Economy to the Edge

BY THOMAS BYRNE
Source Link

As in much of the world, the coronavirus pandemic has shut down North Korea’s economy. The country’s fiscal resources are overwhelmed, forcing Pyongyang to issue domestic bonds for the first time in 17 years. The crisis highlights the country’s financial weakness, which stems from its decades-long self-imposed isolation and more recent international sanctions.

Before turning to debt, North Korea attempted to wring money from state factories and the country’s budding donju entrepreneur class of merchants—and, increasingly, financiers—who best exemplify North Korea’s “reform from below” dynamic. They rose from the collapse of the central plan and have a symbiotic relationship with a state officially hostile to capitalism, existing in a limbo with little political or legal protections, as contract law and property rights remain rudimentary. The Minju Chosun, a powerful government-run newspaper in North Korea, called on factories and businesses to fulfill their tax obligations so that the state could meet its plans to grow the budget 4.2 percent this year. That seems an impossibility at this point.

Neurotechnology overview: Why we need a treaty to regulate weapons controlled by … thinking

By Filippa Lentzos, Isobel Butorac

Elon Musk’s newest venture, Neuralink, is attempting to wire brains directly to computers. The start-up’s vision is to insert thousands of tiny threads into the neurons of your brain. The other ends of the threads are attached to chips, embedded under the skin on your head and wirelessly connected to a detachable Bluetooth ‘pod’ behind your ear, enabling you to control a phone or another device with your thoughts. Sound far-fetched? The company has already successfully tested the technology in monkeys and aims to start testing it in humans later this year.

Neuralink’s brain-machine interface could potentially help people with brain and spinal cord injuries who have lost the ability to move or sense, as Musk highlighted at the company’s livestreamed launch event. Even more ambitiously, Musk said his long-term goal is “to achieve a sort of symbiosis with [artificial intelligence].” He wants to build what he calls a digital superintelligence layer to complement the parts of the brain responsible for thinking and planning (the cerebral cortex) and for emotions and memory (the limbic system). In fact, he said, “you already have this layer.” It is your phone and your laptop. But you are limited by how quickly you can process what you see, and how quickly you can type a response. The answer, Musk says, is to increase the band-width of the brain-machine interface.

Neuralink is just one of the organizations developing cutting-edge neurotechnology, although others like teams at Carnegie Mellon, Rice University, and Battelle, are not proposing drilling through people’s skulls and inserting microscopic threads into their brains, opting instead for electromagnetics, light beams, and acoustic waves.

Artificial Intelligence and UK National Security: Policy Considerations

Alexander Babuta, Marion Oswald and Ardi Janjeva

RUSI was commissioned by GCHQ to conduct an independent research study into the use of artificial intelligence (AI) for national security purposes. The aim of this project is to establish an independent evidence base to inform future policy development regarding national security uses of AI. The findings are based on in-depth consultation with stakeholders from across the UK national security community, law enforcement agencies, private sector companies, academic and legal experts, and civil society representatives. This was complemented by a targeted review of existing literature on the topic of AI and national security. 

The research has found that AI offers numerous opportunities for the UK national security community to improve efficiency and effectiveness of existing processes. AI methods can rapidly derive insights from large, disparate datasets and identify connections that would otherwise go unnoticed by human operators. However, in the context of national security and the powers given to UK intelligence agencies, use of AI could give rise to additional privacy and human rights considerations which would need to be assessed within the existing legal and regulatory framework. For this reason, enhanced policy and guidance is needed to ensure the privacy and human rights implications of national security uses of AI are reviewed on an ongoing basis as new analysis methods are applied to data. 

CEO of Israeli Cybersecurity Startup: ‘Fake Information Is One of the Worst Side Effects of Covid-19’

by Hager Ravet

CTech – One of the most disturbing side effects of the coronavirus pandemic is not related to physical symptoms but to online behavior — it is the fake news culture related to the pandemic. The phenomenon has become so widespread and dangerous that even Facebook recently announced it would take action to remove unverified information about the virus from the social network. At the center of the war on the fake sites is an Israeli cyber company called IntSights Cyber Intelligence that recently started working in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO). IntSights develops a database that aggregates threat intelligence and provides organizations with tailored threat analyses.

Guy Nizan, the company’s co-founder and CEO, said in a recent interview with Calcalist that one of the company’s most recent focus topics is detecting the plethora of fake sites related to the coronavirus pandemic, the World Health Organization, and other health organizations.

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