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The ASG Weekly Leaf: 10/2/20

This week, Germany will mark the 30th anniversary of its reunification, the U.S. threatened to withdraw from its embassy in Baghdad, Azerbaijan and Armenia clashed over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, and North Korea issued a rare apology for the killing of a South Korean official. Read more below.

This Week's Content Highlights

Features from Aspen Strategy Group Members


Nicholas Burns in Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress discussion: “Amb. R. Nicholas Burns on America's Foreign Policy Challenges in 2021”

Kurt Campbell, Richard Verma, and Daniel Yergin on The Asia Group’s Tea Leaves podcast

Nick Kristof, Johnny Harris, and Adam Ellick in The New York Times: “How America Lost 200,000 Lives to Covid-19”

Dina Powell McCormick in Jewish Insider discussion: “UAE Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba, Haim Saban, Dina Powell McCormick Discuss the Abraham Accords”

Condoleezza Rice in Hoover Institution discussion: “China, Hong Kong, and the Future of Freedom: Director Condoleezza Rice and Lord Chris Patten”

David Sanger and Anton Troianovski in The New York Times: “Putin Wants a Truce in Cyberspace — While Denying Russian Interference”

Things to Know

Stay Informed with Important Analysis Relevant to Aspen Security Forum Discussions


Timothy Garten Ash in The Guardian: “Since Reunification, Germany Has Had Its Best 30 Years. The Next 30 Will Be Harder”

Joohee Cho on ABC News:North Korea Issues Rare Apology After Killing South Korean Official at Sea”

Nvard Hovhannisyan and Nailia Bagirova in Reuters:” Fiercest Clashes Since 1990s Rage in Azerbaijan's Ethnic Armenian Enclave”

Louisa Loveluck, Missy Ryan, and John Hudson in The Washington Post: “U.S. Tells Iraq It’s Planning to Pull Out of Baghdad Embassy”

  • See the Aspen Security Forum discussion on the Middle East with Commander Kenneth McKenzie here.

Suzanne Lynch in The Irish Times: “Ireland Will Not Be Brexit ‘Collateral Damage’, Says Coveney in Washington”

  • See the Aspen Security Forum discussion with Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs and Defence Simon Coveney here.

Katharine Murphy in The Guardian: “TikTok Hits Back At 'Misinformation' About Its Ties to China in Submission to Senate Inquiry”

  • See our ASF 2020 discussion with Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison here.

In Case You Missed It


Ireland's Role in a Changing World



with Simon Coveney

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Defence, Ireland

Moderated by Nicholas Burns

Goodman Family Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and

International Relations, Harvard Kennedy School &

Executive Director, Aspen Strategy Group


September 29, 2020

10 – 11 a.m. ET

Watch Here

Inside the Five-Sided Box: Lessons from a Lifetime of Leadership in the Pentagon

By Ash Carter

The twenty-fifth Secretary of Defense takes readers behind the scenes to reveal the inner workings of the Pentagon, its vital mission, and what it takes to lead it.

The Pentagon is the headquarters of the single largest institution in America: the Department of Defense. The D.O.D. employs millions of Americans. It owns and operates more real estate, and spends more money, than any other entity. It manages the world’s largest and most complex information network and performs more R&D than Apple, Google, and Microsoft combined. Most important, the policies it carries out, in war and peace, impact the security of billions of people around the globe.

Yet to most Americans, the dealings of the D.O.D. are a mystery, and the Pentagon nothing more than an opaque five-sided box that they regard with a mixture of awe and suspicion. In this book, former Secretary of Defense Ash Carter demystifies the Pentagon and sheds light on all that happens inside one of the nation’s most iconic, and most closely guarded, buildings.

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