Fdd's overnight brief

March 22, 2023

FDD Research & Analysis

In The News


The United States said Tuesday it is imposing a new round of sanctions on Iranian firms and people accused of procuring equipment used for Iranian drones. – Associated Press

Facing challenges to its power and international criticism over its human-rights abuses, the Iranian government has built a large and sophisticated cyber army, which has targeted its domestic and foreign opponents using cyberattacks, propaganda and large-scale misinformation campaigns, according to researchers and activists who monitor online activity in Iran. – Bloomberg

Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei shut down intra-regime debates about political reform to address protester grievances and instead confined these debates to the economy during a Nowrouz speech on March 21. – Institute for the Study of War

Several US Military leaders write: Our military experience has taught us that demonstrating the willingness and capability to use force offers the best chance against having to do so. If a conflict does commence, it is best to possess already the weapons necessary to achieve success.By acting now to augment Israel’s military capabilities, the United States can help Israel defend itself by itself, prevent a nuclear Iran, and address one of the most pressing strategic challenges America faces today. – Jewish Institute for National Security of America

Eric R. Mandel writes: Overstating the longevity of any accord between Saudi Arabia and Iran is a risk. These two countries fundamentally remain adversaries, but the potential détente may create a short-term ceasefire that quiets the region. It also could be an Iranian tactical decision to make an Israeli preemptive action less likely, knowing that the international community will put pressure on Israel not to upset the apple cart. – The Hill

David Albright, Sarah Burkhard, and Spencer Faragasso write: With Iran accelerating its advanced centrifuge deployments, uncertainties are growing in the estimated number of advanced centrifuges produced in excess of those deployed, increasing concern that Iran will again seek to build a clandestine enrichment plant, using advanced centrifuges manufactured in secret. – Institute for Science and International Security

Maria Fantappie and Vali Nasr write: What happened in Beijing by no means lessens the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear and regional policies. However, in the short run, Washington should welcome the lowering of tensions in the Middle East, which enables the United States to focus on other global priorities without the pretense of a steadfast commitment to the region. – Foreign Affairs

Russia & Ukraine

Chinese leader Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin reaffirmed the deepening political and economic ties between their two countries at a summit that telegraphed their shared interest in challenging a world order led by the U.S. and its democratic allies. – Wall Street Journal

Russia launched a new wave of missiles and armed drones into Ukraine early Wednesday, killing three people in a school dormitory in the Kyiv region and injuring at least 10 others, Ukrainian officials said. – Wall Street Journal

The battle for Bakhmut is reaching a critical point as Russian forces throw assault troops on suicide missions, capturing territory inch-by-inch and closing around the city like a vise. As recently as January, Ukrainian commanders said the city wasn’t strategically important. In the past two weeks, they have changed their minds, rejecting the idea of withdrawal even as casualties have mounted. – Wall Street Journal

The Pentagon, in a significant shift, said Tuesday that it will send M1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine by the fall, after facing scrutiny for initially saying it could take a year or two to procure the powerful weapons and get them to the battlefield. – Washington Post

As swarms of Russian soldiers stormed Ukrainian lines in furious assaults around two cities in the east on Tuesday, Ukraine set the stage for its own advance by making strikes deep behind Russian lines, including what appeared to be a drone attack on a vital logistical hub in the occupied Crimean Peninsula. – New York Times

The Biden administration vowed last month to crack down on companies that sell critical technologies to Russia as part of its efforts to curtail the country’s war against Ukraine. But the continued flow of Chinese drones to the country explains why that will be hard. – New York Times

Russia’s Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday it had protested to Canada’s top diplomat in Moscow over comments by Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly about “regime change” in Russia. – Reuters

The U.S. has denied a Russian claim that an American MQ-9 Reaper drone that was downed over the Black Sea on March 14 could have been involved in preparations for a strike on the Russian Black Sea port of Tuapse, calling the allegations “ridiculous.” – Newsweek

The Russian government on Tuesday claimed to have “obliterated” a radar system provided to Ukraine by the U.S. – Newsweek

Editorial: Mr. Putin is convinced that time is his ally in Ukraine, and that the West will tire of the cost and commitment required to defend Kyiv and help it win back territory lost to the Russian dictator’s land grab. Bleeding Russia’s economy with tougher sanctions and enforcement is one way of persuading him, along with other Russian elites, that the price of his folly will be higher, last longer and cause more pain than the Kremlin currently imagines. – Washington Post

David Ignatius writes: The bottom line: The International Criminal Court indicted Putin last week for war crimes. Xi is his only powerful friend. Dealing with them separately is bad enough. If they truly become partners in Eurasia, sharing dominion under a Chinese banner, that would be worse. – Washington Post

Joseph Bosco writes: The answer to that challenge, however, is not to deprive Ukraine of all it needs, as fast as it needs it, to defeat Russia. […]If Hitler and Mussolini — and Putin — had known the fate that awaited them, they might well have tamed their aggressive urges. Xi still has time to learn that lesson, if a resolute West is prepared to teach it. – The Hill

Karolina Hird, Kateryna Stepanenko, Riley Bailey, Nicole Wolkov, and Frederick W. Kagan write: The second day of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit with Russian President Vladimir Putin continued to suggest that Putin has not been able to secure the no-limits bilateral partnership with China that he likely hoped for. – Institute for the Study of War

Leon Aron writes: Finally, as five years ago, a key obstacle to a true political-military alliance is still there: despite the cooling of the trade with the West, China’s embeddedness in the world economy is orders of magnitude greater in extent and depth than that of Russia’s. It has far more to lose than Russia if it joins Putin in its anti-Western crusade—at least for now. Putin should not hold his breath. – American Enterprise Institute

Philipp Ivanov writes: It was partly because of this inequality and Russia’s patronizing policies toward China that the Sino-Soviet split in the late 1960s put an abrupt end to this communist bromance. With the roles reversed in 2023, China is marching across the globe, and its more dependent younger brother is shuffling behind. – Foreign Policy

Mark Lawrence Schrad writes: Will the indictment of Putin help uproot the antipathy and hostility that has been entrenched in Washington for the past 40 years? Will we return to the traditional recognition that U.S. national interests—from facilitating trade and commerce, to national security, to the promotion of liberty and human rights at home and abroad—actually rely on a robust, laws-based international order? Now for that, I’ll remain skeptical. – Foreign Policy


The Biden administration condemned an Israeli parliament vote repealing a 2005 law that barred settlers from parts of the West Bank, calling the move “provocative and counterproductive.” – Bloomberg

In a rare move, the Biden administration summoned Israel’s Ambassador Mike Herzog to the State Department over the Knesset’s repeal of the Disengagement Law as it applies to northern Samaria. – Jerusalem Post

Israel is committed to protecting the status quo on the Temple Mount during Ramadan, which begins on Wednesday, Foreign Ministry Director-General Ronen (Maoz) Levy told a gathering of foreign ambassadors stationed in Israel. – Jerusalem Post

Of all the Mideast hotspots, the West Bank is the most closely watched. Even when it’s not Ramadan this is widely seen as a powder keg, where increasingly frustrated Arabs have in the past used the holy month for violence at the religiously significant Temple Mount — and where Israeli government hardliners are in no mood for concessions.  – New York Sun

Lebanon on Tuesday condemned the remarks made by Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, who said at an event in Paris that “there’s no such thing as a Palestinian people”. – Arutz Sheva

National Security Adviser Tzachi Hanegbi spoke with Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi to assuage Amman’s outrage after Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich spoke at a podium adorned with a flag of the so-called “Greater Israel” that appeared to include the neighboring kingdom. – Ynet

Shalom Salomon Wald writes: China’s Middle East policies could seriously harm Israel’s interests. Whether America wants to leave the Middle East, as many suspect, or whether it wants to stay, this would not be in America’s own national interest. – Jerusalem Post

Yossi Yehoshua writes: If the objective is to keep the IDF out of politics, then the politicians must not pass on its responsibilities, of dealing with protests against judicial reforms to the military chief. – Ynet

Matthew Levitt writes: The decisionmaking on this response could be affected not only by security considerations, but also by the government’s hardline composition and its desire to tamp down Israel’s domestic crisis. In other words, multiple factors on both sides provide ample opportunities for miscalculation and unintended escalation. – Washington Institute


A year ago, the Taliban’s supreme leader revived the Taliban’s signature policy from the 1990s and banned girls from attending secondary school. Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada is discovering that it is one thing to issue a fiat, and quite another to enforce it in an Afghanistan that has changed dramatically since the Taliban last ruled. – Wall Street Journal

An overnight raid by Taliban forces in Afghanistan’s capital killed three members of the extremist Islamic State group, a Taliban spokesman said on Wednesday. – Associated Press

Afghanistan’s school year started on Tuesday, the education ministry said, as the U.N. children’s agency renewed calls for teenage girls to be able to rejoin the classroom. – Reuters

A public inquiry into allegations that members of British special forces carried out dozens of extra-judicial killings during night raids in Afghanistan gets underway in London on Wednesday. – Reuters


An Israeli airstrike early Wednesday targeted the international airport of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo, causing material damage in the second attack on the facility this month, state media report. – Associated Press

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad met UN relief chief Martin Griffiths on Tuesday and discussed ways to help Syria recover from last month’s earthquake and bring about the conditions for the return of refugees, the Syrian presidency reported. – Reuters

Jeremy Konyndyk and Jesse Marks write: All of this must now happen at lightning speed. It has been nearly two months since the quakes. The crucial recovery phase is just beginning. If the international community fails to act or to invest in the country’s recovery, millions of people will suffer—and Assad will only stand to gain. – Foreign Affairs


That rapidly changed after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq that toppled Saddam Hussein. Analysts say that Iraqi Kurds — and particularly the Kurdish political class — were the biggest beneficiaries in a conflict that had few winners. – Associated Press

Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) on Tuesday said he would support legislation to repeal two Iraq war authorizations. – The Hill

Bret Stephens writes: Readers will want to know whether, knowing what I know now, I would still have supported the decision to invade. Not for the reasons given at the time. Not in the way we did it. But on the baseline question of whether Iraq, the Middle East and the world are better off for having gotten rid of a dangerous tyrant, my answer remains yes. – New York Times


Protesters closed down major roads in parts of Lebanon on Tuesday after the Lebanese pound briefly hit a new low amid a historic economic crisis that seemingly has no end in sight. – Associated Press

The suspected Hezbollah terrorist who planted a bomb at Megiddo Junction in the north of Israel last week crossed the Lebanon border fence using a ladder, defense sources said Tuesday. – Times of Israel

Two Israeli soldiers were hurt when an old landmine exploded on the border with Lebanon on Tuesday, the military said. – Times of Israel

Arabian Peninsula

At least 10 soldiers were killed in renewed fighting in Yemen, military sources told AFP, despite diplomatic efforts to halt the long-running war in the Arab world’s poorest country. – Agence France-Presse

The United Arab Emirates is considering reducing its level of diplomatic representation in Israel after Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich said in Paris that “there is no such thing as a Palestinian people,” according to Saudi reports on Monday. – Jerusalem Post

Bilal Y. Saab writes: Saudi Arabia has a significant opportunity to upgrade its security ties with the United States. It even has some leverage to push Washington in that direction. But Riyadh must not base its offer to Washington on Israeli interests. That won’t be enough to sway U.S. public opinion and policy in Washington. – Foreign Policy

Middle East & North Africa

Algeria’s relations with Morocco have reached the point of no return, Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune told Al Jazeera on Tuesday. – Reuters

Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and eight of his fellow Democrats in the committee issued a statement welcoming the Sharm el-Sheikh meeting that was held earlier this week between Israeli and Palestinian officials and calling for de-escalation ahead of the Ramadan and Passover holidays. – Jerusalem Post

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita met on Monday and discussed “efforts to advance regional peace and security, reflecting Morocco’s stabilizing role on a range of challenges in the Middle East and Africa.” – Jerusalem Post

A high-level delegation of Libyan officials and parliamentarians traveled to Washington last week to rally U.S. support for a stalled election process in a bid to end their country’s decadelong cycle of conflict. Without an end to the political gridlock over a U.N. proposal to hold elections, the country could spiral into another wave of conflict, these Libyan officials warned, with far-reaching implications for North Africa and southern Europe. – Foreign Policy

Max J. Prowant writes: In short, diplomacy between Saudi Arabia and Iran is neither inimical to U.S. interests nor is it a herald of a new era of Middle East peace. U.S. policymakers should welcome any effort to ease tensions between the countries. It should also continue to strengthen an alliance between Saudi Arabia and Israel. The Abraham Accords, not the Beijing talks, will bring a more lasting peace to the Middle East. – The National Interest

Korean Peninsula

North Korea fired several cruise missiles on Wednesday, continuing its spree of weapons tests in response to ongoing joint military drills by the U.S. and South Korea. – Wall Street Journal

South Korea plans to hold its “largest-ever” live-fire drills with the US in a move certain to anger North Korea, which has ramped up its provocations to new levels in response to recent military exercises. – Bloomberg

In an interview with Newsweek, the first senior diplomat to defect from North Korea has revealed his views on a potential power struggle emerging at the highest levels of Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un’s dynasty, and his plan for a possible path forward to engage the ruler of the isolated, nuclear-armed nation on human rights issues. – Newsweek

South Korea’s trade ministry said on Wednesday that the United States’ proposed rules to prevent $52 billion in chip funding from being used by “countries of concern” will not force recipients to shut down their China factories. – Reuters


More sanctions against Chinese manufacturers could be on the way. The Biden administration warned recently that China, for the first time, had been considering the provision of lethal aid to the Russian military. On Monday, Chinese President Xi Jinping arrived in Moscow for three days of talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin on a range of subjects, including the war in Ukraine. – Washington Post

Chinese trade restrictions and other punitive measures against countries seen as offending its interests have a poor record of getting Beijing the outcome it wants, a new study finds. – Wall Street Journal

Xi Jinping used two days of talks in Moscow to firmly align with Russia against the US. But the Chinese leader held back from offering Vladimir Putin something he’s been looking for: A commitment to buy a lot more gas. – Bloomberg

That was more than idle flattery. China isn’t just Moscow’s diplomatic partner in opposing what they see as U.S. domination of global affairs. Its thriving economy is the biggest buyer of Russian oil and gas exports, pumping billions of dollars into Putin’s treasury and helping the Kremlin resist Western sanctions over its invasion of Ukraine. – Associated Press 

Hal Brands writes: All this depends, however, on an Iranian regime that has made its living roiling the region now accepting the need for an extended period of calm. If that restraint doesn’t materialize, the Middle East will revert to its volatile pattern — and another Chinese diplomatic gambit may blow up in Xi’s face. – Bloomberg

Tom Rogan writes: China’s hawkish (if not terribly smart) foreign policy chief Wang Yi might like this “wolf warrior” adventurism. But it’s hard to see how Tan has done China’s interests any favors with this interview. – Washington Examiner

Tom Rogan writes: For the U.S., this meeting is a reminder that China and Russia are forging stronger bonds against American interests. Just click the center of the video below and watch as the two leaders stood to listen to the Russian national anthem. That anthem shares the music, if not the words, of the Soviet Union’s national anthem. – Washington Examiner

Gideon Rachman writes: The pictures of Xi and Putin together in Moscow will send a clear message. Russia and China remain close partners — linked by their joint hostility to America and its allies. – Financial Times

Paul Boardman writes: More recently, the Chinese spy balloon has alerted Americans about just how far China will go to gather information about us. During President Harry Truman’s time, the question was, “Who lost China?” In our time, the question is, “Will we lose ourselves to China?” In the movie, Truman left the set. Americans need to wake up to reality and do the same thing. We must decouple from China now, while there is still time. – Newsweek

Matthew Reynolds and Matthew P. Goodman write: The counterstrategy proposed here aims to deter Beijing from its disruptive behavior over time, while preserving the moral high ground for the United States. – Center for Strategic and International Studies

Ionut Popescu, Dan Negrea, and James Jay Carafano write: Finally, the administration should use Development Finance Corporation authorities more proactively and direct financial support toward critical mineral development and processing capabilities in allied and partner nations. This would include possible eligibility for domestic projects with dual-impact alongside supported projects in resource-rich developing countries. – The National Interest

South Asia

A Pakistani intelligence official was killed and seven of his team members were injured in an encounter with militants in northwestern Pakistan on Tuesday, the country’s military said. – Reuters

Sri Lanka will get the first $330 million tranche of an International Monetary Fund bailout in the next two days, the global lender said on Tuesday, putting the onus on the cash-strapped country to rein in its debt to sustainable levels. – Reuters

Lynne O’Donnell writes: But all of the urgent economic issues are taking a back seat to warrants, arrests, and vitriol. “Even in the context of Pakistan’s calamitous political and economic instability, what is happening now is extreme. It has never been this bad,” Alam said. “From all the evidence, the Army and the government are trying to delay the elections because a free and fair election, if that is even possible, means that Imran sweeps.” – Foreign Policy


Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida met Tuesday with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv, becoming the first postwar Japanese leader to visit an active war zone and the final member of the Group of Seven advanced nations to make the trek to Ukraine’s capital to show support. – Washington Post

Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen will visit the United States at the end of the month, stopping over in New York and California — where she will meet with a top U.S. lawmaker — on her way to and from Central America to shore up ties with her island democracy’s few remaining diplomatic allies. – Washington Post

Asia’s stake in Europe’s war was made crystal clear Tuesday when the leaders of the region’s two richest countries sat in the capitals of Russia and Ukraine in strong shows of support for the opposing sides. – Associated Press

Two Russian strategic bomber planes flew over the Sea of Japan for more than seven hours, the Russian defence ministry said on Tuesday in a statement released as Japan’s prime minister was beginning a visit to Ukraine. – Reuters

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Wednesday defended his decision to allow a larger United States military presence in the country as vital to territorial defense despite China’s fierce opposition and warning that it would “drag the Philippines into the abyss of geopolitical strife.” – Associated Press

The Biden administration is putting out the word that planned stopovers in the United States by Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen in the coming weeks fall in line with recent precedent and should not be used as a pretext by China to step up aggressive activity in the Taiwan Strait. – Associated Press

Taiwan’s defence ministry has contingency plans for any moves by China during Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen’s overseas visit, Deputy Defence Minister Po Horng-huei said on Wednesday ahead of Tsai going to the United States and Central America next week. – Reuters

The United States will announce further sanctions against entities inside Myanmar in the coming days, a senior State Department official said on Wednesday. – Reuters

Jessica Chen Weiss writes: Washington should help bolster Taiwan’s defenses, but it should do so without signaling dramatic changes in U.S. military support, which risk inadvertently creating the impression that Beijing has a limited window to invade. Beijing, Washington, and Taipei must avoid creating the very do-or-die scenario that they fear. – Foreign Affairs

Nick Aspinwall writes: Experts worry the military expertise the United States shares with the Philippines will continue being used not to make the country more secure, but to hunt and kill political opposition. “With military generals being trained in the U.S., that … transfer of knowledge and training translates into a very particular aspect of Philippine society, which is counterinsurgency and counterterrorism,” Macaspac said. “And there’s really no accountability there. – Foreign Policy


An Italian court on Tuesday agreed to hand over to U.S authorities a Russian national who has been accused of offences including shipping oil from Venezuela in breach of sanctions. – Reuters

Foreign Minister Eli Cohen and British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly signed an agreement in London on Tuesday setting the agenda for bilateral economic, security and technology ties. – Times of Israel

The European Jewish diaspora is unenthusiastic about European Union (EU) member states’ efforts to fight antisemitism, according to a report presented on Tuesday by the World Jewish Congress (WJC) during a trip to Madrid, Spain. – Algemeiner

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya writes: We hope that Washington and its allies will continue to apply as much pressure as possible on Mr. Lukashenko’s vile regime. We need his role in Mr. Putin’s war to end and for Russian troops to leave Belarus for good. We need the gulags to empty and the people of Belarus to be able to decide without fear of retribution how they want to be governed. The choice is between democratically elected leaders and a Kremlin stooge. – Wall Street Journal


Ethiopia and Eritrea on Tuesday rejected a determination by the U.S. State Department that their armies, along with all sides in the recently concluded conflict in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region, had committed war crimes. – Reuters

African countries saddled with debt and ravaged by losses and damages from weather events like cyclones, drought and extreme temperatures have agreed to consider swapping debt to invest in climate action in a meeting of finance ministers in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa. – Associated Press

French journalist Olivier Dubois arrived home on Tuesday to be warmly embraced by family members and President Emmanuel Macron, bringing an end to almost two years of captivity in Mali. – Reuters

North America

The request was unusual; Haiti has suffered a long history of destabilizing foreign interventions. But as the Caribbean nation struggles with gang violence, civil and political unrest, and a resurgence of cholera, it quickly drew backing from U.N. Secretary General António Guterres and the United States. The Biden administration soon drafted a U.N. Security Council resolution proposing a “non-U.N. international security assistance mission” to support the beleaguered Haitian police in restoring order. The catch: The United States does not want to lead it. – Washington Post

The U.S. State Department said Tuesday it was “concerned about the fair treatment of our companies in Mexico” after Mexican police seized a cargo terminal owned by an Alabama-based company. – Associated Press

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador on Tuesday defended Donald Trump, saying a potential indictment of the former president could be a move to prevent him from seeking reelection. – Newsweek

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau bowed to pressure from the opposition and agreed to allow his top aide to testify before a parliamentary committee probing alleged Chinese election interference, his office said on Tuesday. – Reuters

U.S. President Joe Biden will make a long-delayed visit to close ally Canada this week to express unity on Ukraine and the environment, but is unlikely to make much progress on tougher trade disputes, sources said on Tuesday. – Reuters

Dan Caldwell writes: Acknowledging that the United States faces real limits to its power does not mean accepting a broader narrative of American decline. To the contrary, adopting a more prudent foreign policy will ensure that U.S. power isn’t squandered and provide the means to guarantee the safety and prosperity of future generations of Americans. – Foreign Affairs


Rep. Joe Morelle (N.Y.), the top Democrat on the House Administration Committee, said Tuesday that at least 17 current and former members of Congress had their personal data exposed in a recent health care data breach. – The Hill

TikTok CEO Shou Chew will attempt to defend his company during a critical congressional hearing on Thursday in the face of mounting claims by the Biden administration — and many others in Washington and in state houses around the country — that its Chinese ownership poses a dangerous U.S. national security threat. – CyberScoop

Ransomware attacks have become the most significant cyberthreat facing the transport sector in the European Union, according to new analysis published Tuesday. – The Record


NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Tuesday that he would call a high-level meeting of the military organization’s main forum for cooperation with Ukraine next month despite objections from Hungary. – Associated Press

The U.S. Marine Corps is asking lawmakers to compel the Navy to keep building amphibious warships, as the sea service wants to truncate San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock production and take a “strategic pause” to reconsider future amphib ships. – Defense News

The ability to sink Chinese warships armed with surface-to-air missiles is critical to defending Taiwan, the Air Force’s top officer for the Pacific said Tuesday. – USNI News

Just seven of NATO’s 30 member states met its 2 percent GDP defense spending target in 2022, figures from the alliance’s newly published annual report show, while Russia’s invasion of Ukraine highlighted for many the criticality of future defense spending in Europe. – Defense News

The recently revealed AUKUS plan, including the development of new SSN AUKUS-class submarines, clearly changes the strategic calculus for the United States, United Kingdom and Australia in the Indo-Pacific. What is less clear, naval analysts tell Breaking Defense, is exactly what impact it will have on China’s thinking — especially when it comes to a potential invasion of Taiwan. – Defense News

Jim Mitre writes: Nevertheless, mixed in with the unspeakable human tragedy of this war is real momentum for widespread change in the Defense Department and its allied and partner counterparts. This momentum, along with the continued freedom of the Ukrainian people and the diminution of the Russian Armed Forces and Putin’s kleptocracy, is the dividend from investments in Ukraine. The key now is to spend it wisely. – War on the Rocks

Long War

Counter-terror police are involved in an investigation into a man being set alight as he walked home from a mosque. – BBC

The Israeli military early Wednesday morning made preparations for the demolition of the home of a Palestinian terrorist who carried out a deadly shooting attack in the West Bank town of Huwara last month, killing two Israeli brothers. – Times of Israel

Four Palestinians from the West Bank who were allegedly recruited by a terror group in the Gaza Strip to carry out major attacks were detained in recent weeks, the Shin Bet security agency said Tuesday. – Times of Israel

Israeli security personnel uncovered a Palestinian Arab terrorist cell planning a number of shooting attacks in Jerusalem, the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) revealed Tuesday morning. – Arutz Sheva