• InfrastructureMarine Sponges Inspire Next Generation Skyscrapers, Bridges

    When we think about sponges, we tend to think of something soft and squishy. But researchers are using the glassy skeletons of marine sponges as inspiration for the next generation of stronger and taller buildings, longer bridges, and lighter spacecraft.

  • CybersecurityCyber Vulnerabilities Affecting Bluetooth-Based Medical Devices

    Internet-of-Things (IoT) such as smart home locks and medical devices, depend largely on Bluetooth low energy (BLE) technology to function and connect across other devices with reduced energy consumption. The Greyhound framework, named after the breed of dogs known for their hunting abilities, was designed to systematically sniff out security lapses in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled devices.

  • ResilienceNetwork Resilience is Key to Surviving Compound Hazard Events

    As weather extremes such as Superstorm Sandy, which swamped New York City’s subway system in 2012, increase in frequency and intensity and as cybercriminals ramp up attacks on technologies that tie together urban infrastructure systems, networks critical to the flow of data, people, goods, and services must be made more resilient to failure

  • China syndromeChina Expanding Detention Camp Network in Xinjiang

    China’s network of detention centers in the northwest Xinjiang region is much more extended than previously thought and has been expanded in recent years. The number of facilities where China is believed to have detained more than 1 million Uyghurs and other mostly Muslim Turkic-speaking minorities is around 40 percent greater than previous estimates and the network has been growing despite China’s claims that many Uyghurs have been released.

  • China syndromeChinese Nuke Arsenal Next on Beijing’s “To-Do” List, U.S. Commander Warns

    By Carla Babb

    The commander in charge of the U.S. military’s nuclear arsenal has warned that increasing China’s nuclear stockpile is “next” on Beijing’s “to-do list.” Speaking to reporters at the Pentagon, U.S. Strategic Command chief Adm. Charles Richard said that while the United States has “no margin” of error left to start recapitalizing its nuclear force, China has a proven record of steadily building its military.

  • EpidemicsU.S. COVID-19 Deaths Top the 200,000 Mark

    By Lisa Schnirring

    The United States passed the grim milestone of 200,000 deaths from COVID-19 yesterday (22 September) on the first day of fall, cases are rising nationally, and more controversies and developments continue to roil the U.S. response. Currently, the U.S. fatality count from COVID-19 is at 200,477 among 6,882,969 cases that have been reported.

  • PERSPECTIVE: Catastrophes50,000 Benghazis, 109 Katrinas: U.S. COVID-19 Death in Perspective

    The United States now counts over 200,000 dead in direct connection with the novel coronavirus. Elizabeth Hunt Brockway writes that to grasp the enormity of this figure, we need to see how this massive number stacks up to Pearl Harbor, 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, and other iconic events of mass death, suffering, and pain seared into the American collective conscience.

  • Vaccine hesitancyA History of the Anti-Vaxxer Movement

    Vaccines are a documented success story, one of the most successful public health interventions in history. Yet there is a vocal anti-vaccination movement, featuring celebrity activists and the propagation of anti-vax claims through books, documentaries, and social media. A new book explores the phenomenon of the anti-vaccination movement, recounting its history from its nineteenth-century antecedents to today’s activism, examining its claims, and suggesting a strategy for countering them.

  • Election securityForeign Actors Will Likely Spread Disinformation about 2020 Election Results: FBI, CISA

    In a testimony before Congress last week, FBI Director Christopher Wray warned lawmakers that Russia is not letting up in its efforts to sway the outcome of the November presidential election. He said that what worried him the most was “the steady drumbeat of misinformation and amplification” of false claims about the integrity on the American voting system and the spreading of lies about mail-in voting. The purpose is to sow doubt and confusion about the election results, thus readying the ground for a challenge to, or even a rejection of, the results. On Tuesday, the FBI and CISA issued a public service announcement about foreign actors and cybercriminals spreading disinformation about election results.

  • TerrorismGroup Portrait of America's Jihadists

    A new report by RAND’s Brian Michael Jenkins answers the following questions:1) What is the collective profile of Americans traveling or attempting to travel abroad to join jihadist groups? 2) Among Americans associated with terrorism or terrorist organizations, are there significant differences in the demographics or backgrounds that propelled some to go abroad and some to instead join the jihadist movement at home? 3) What can the collective profile of America’s jihadists reveal about the dimensions and nature of the terrorist threat, the statistical profile of those who respond to jihadist recruiting appeals, the effectiveness of the U.S. response to the threat, and the results of that response?

  • Supply chain securityThe Weakest Link of Global Supply Chains

    From toilet paper to industrial chemicals, there’s no doubt the COVID-19 pandemic has been disruptive to global supply chains. But how important are large, multinational companies in maintaining both local and international logistic networks and should governments be so focused on maintaining larger organizations through subsidies and bail-outs over their smaller counterparts? A new study finds that smaller operators can deliver the hardest logistic shocks.

  • Climate migrationClimate Change Triggers Migration

    Environmental hazards affect populations worldwide and can drive migration under specific conditions, especially in middle-income and agricultural countries. According to a new study, changes in temperature levels, increased rainfall variability, and rapid-onset disasters such as tropical storms play an important role in this regard.

  • Our picksElection Engineering | The Real James Bond | The Militia Menace, and more

    ·  The Rise of the Foreign Funds that Distort Western Politics

    ·  Election Engineering: How U.S. Experts Are Making Sure Your Vote Will Count

    ·  Repairing Humanity’s Relationship with the Planet Will Be Cheaper Than Continuing to Let It Slide

    ·  We Live in a Potemkin Autocracy Now

    ·  Blocking Students Is Not the Answer to Chinese Spying in America

    ·  ASIO Reveals Up to 40 Percent of Its Counterterrorism Cases Involve Far-Right Violent Extremism

    ·  The Unanswered Question of Our Time: Is Trump an Agent of Russia?

    ·  Around 20 DHS Intelligence Reports Recalled in the Wake of Portland Controversy

    ·  The Militia Menace

    ·  Britain Sent the Real James Bond to Spy on Cold War Poland

  • Civil unrestDOJ: 3 Cities Could Lose Federal Funding for Allowing Violence

    The U.S. Department of Justice said Monday that three U.S. cities have “permitted violence and destruction of property” to persist and threatened to cut federal funding if they don’t take measures to restore law and order. According to a news release, New York City, Portland, Oregon, and Seattle, Washington, risk the loss of funding. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan responded to the DOJ statement. “This is thoroughly political and unconstitutional. The president is playing cheap political games with the congressionally directed funds,” the three said in a joint statement.

  • China syndromeNYPD Officer Charged with Spying for China

    The officer, a naturalized U.S. citizen, looked for intelligence sources within the Tibetan community while working for the Chinese Consulate. He also asked a Chinese official to attend an NYPD event to raise China’s “soft power,” prosecutors say. Tibet has been occupied by China since 1950. China has engaged in a systematic destruction of Buddhist temples and other symbols of Tibetan culture and history, and has suppressed the teaching of Tibetan history and culture in schools. China has also subsidized the settlement of millions of Chinese in Tibet in order to dilute the Tibetan character of the region. 

  • Vaccine hesitancyAmericans Increasingly Skeptical of COVID Vaccine: Poll

    By Chris Dall

    A new survey reveals that Americans are becoming increasingly wary about getting the COVID-19 vaccine once it becomes available. Last April, a Pew Research survey of 10,000 Americans found that 72 percent said they would get a COVID-19 vaccine when it became available. Hen the same 10,000 respondents were polled between 8 and 13 September, only 51 percent said they would definitely or probably get a COVID-19 vaccine if it were available today.

  • Conspiracy theoryBelief in Conspiracy Theories A Barrier to Controlling Spread of COVID-19

    Belief in conspiracy theories about the coronavirus pandemic is not only persistent but also is associated with reluctance to accept a COVID-19 vaccine when one becomes available and to engage in behaviors such as mask-wearing that can prevent its spread, according to research.

  • ARGUMENT: Putin’s long armSecret CIA Assessment: Putin “Probably Directing” Influence Operation to Denigrate Biden

    Russian President Vladimir Putin and his top aides are “probably directing” a Russian foreign influence operation to interfere in the 2020 presidential election against former vice president Joe Biden, a top-secret CIA assessment concluded. The Kremlin’s effort to undermine the Biden campaign involves Andriy Derkach, a prominent Ukrainian lawmaker who has been identified by the U.S. intelligence community as an agent of Russian intelligence, and who is a colleague of President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani. On 10 September the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned Derkach, alleging that he “has been an active Russian agent for over a decade, maintaining close connections with the Russian Intelligence Services.”

  • Hemispheric securityPandemic Crushes Guyana’s Dreams of Big Oil Profits as “Resource Curse” Looms over Oil-Producing Nations

    By Amy Myers Jaffe

    This year was supposed to bring great things for Guyana. ExxonMobil discovered massive oil deposits off the South American country’s Caribbean coast in 2015, and Guyana sold its first cargo of crude oil this February. But Guyana’s dreams of fabulous wealth this year have been dashed by COVID-19, which has delayed production and slashed oil demand. Compounding its coronavirus troubles, Guyana shows warning signs of the so-called “resource curse,” in which a country’s new oil wealth crowds out other productive economic sectors, breeds corruption and triggers political conflict. Very few petrostates have adequately diversified their economies. Exceptions include Malaysia and Dubai, which have both used oil wealth successfully to build a broader economic foundation and have avoided the dreaded “resource curse.” Those countries should be models for Guyana.

  • Cybersecurity educationNSA Awards $6 Million for Cybersecurity Workforce Development

    The Purdue University Northwest (PNW) College of Technology has been awarded a grant of $5,971,053 for Cybersecurity Workforce Development from the National Security Agency (NSA). PNW says that with the funded projects, PNW will be able to contribute significantly to national workforce development in the field of AI and cybersecurity. The U.S. Department of Labor reports that the need for IT and cybersecurity professionals is projected to grow 12 percent from 2018 to 2028 with multi-million shortages.

  • WildfiresWildfire in Northern California's Coastal Ranges on the Rise Since 1984

    High-severity wildfires in northern coastal California have been increasing by about 10 percent per decade since 1984, according to a new study. From Berryessa to Klamath Mountains, High-Severity Burns Quadrupled During Warm Drought.

  • Our picksThe CDC's Crumbling Reputation | FBI’s Cyberstrategy | Is U.S. on the Path to Destruction?, and more

    ·  Pentagon Used Taxpayer Money Meant for Masks and Swabs to Make Jet Engine Parts and Body Armor

    ·  The U.S. Is on the Path to Destruction

    ·  The CDC’s Crumbling Reputation

    ·  Could Trump Assassinate A World Leader and Get Away With it?

    ·  FBI Hopes a More Aggressive Cyber Strategy Will Disrupt Foreign Hackers

    ·  Yes, Russia Is Interfering in the 2020 Election

    ·  YouTube’s Plot to Silence Conspiracy Theories

    ·  Analysis: How Trump’s TikTok Deal Helps China

    ·  The Inside Story of the Mueller Probe’s Mistakes

    ·  Revealed: Why Israel Gunned Down an Obscure Engineer in Malaysia