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June 8, 2011

THE MIDWEEK ROUNDUP

The top five posts from Progressive Fix

Defense Contractors Suffer Network Attacks as Pentagon Issues Cyber Strategy - Matthew Dahl

Last week reports emerged about attempted cyber attacks against the internal networks of three major U.S. defense contractors: Lockheed Martin, L-3 Communications, and Northrop Grumman.  All of the attempted hacks tried to access the companies’ internal networks using compromised remote-access security tokens, which are believed to be linked to yet another hack that occurred at a different government contractor, RSA, in March.  Read more…

Chinese Navy Confirms Construction of Varyag-class Aircraft Carrier - Jim Arkedis

General Chen Bingde, head of the general staff of China’s People Liberation Army (PLA), has confirmed that his country is constructing its first aircraft carrier, an ex-Soviet Varyag set to begin sea trials next year. Spy-masters in Washington and London have been monitoring the ship’s progress for some time, but Gen. Chen’s comments are the first public commentary on its existence. Purchased from a Ukrainian shipyard in 2002 for $20 million by a Macau-based company, the original contract stipulated that the vessel could not be used for military purposes. Read more…

China's Growing Naval Power - Michael Chase

On September 7, 2010, the Japanese coast guard arrested the captain of a Chinese fishing boat for ramming two of its patrol vessels near disputed islands in the East China Sea. The collision took place around the Senkaku Islands, which Japan administers but China claims (and calls the Diaoyu Islands). The incident sparked a major diplomatic confrontation between Beijing and Tokyo: China demanded the captain’s release and canceled high-level meetings with Japan. [This paper was first released in December, but due to China's recent carrier announcment we are recirculating the memo.]  Read more…

The Lost Decade - Will Marshall

Whether U.S. Presidents succeed or fail often depends on a big factor beyond their control: the timing of the business cycle. Lucky Presidents – Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush – experienced downturns early in their first term, leaving plenty of time for an economic rebound to lift them to reelection. Read more...

WingNut Watch: Social Issues Very Much In-Play For GOP Field.  - Ed Kilgore

Last week’s less-than-positive jobs report revived ever-hopeful mainstream media talk that economic issues would decisively trump cultural or constitutional issues in the Republican Party’s councils. And indeed, some reporters saw this long-awaited sign even in the entrails of the Christian Right: the annual Washington get-together of Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition, which attracted most of the GOP presidential field. Here’s how Reuters described the confab, under the title, “Social issues fade as Republicans court conservatives”: Read more…



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