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The ASG Weekly Leaf: 5/14/21


This week, violence between the Israeli military and Gaza militants continues to escalate. In other news, a ransomware attack shut down the Colonial gas pipeline and the Scottish election results renewed the question of another independence referendum. Read more below.

This Week's Content Highlights

Features from Aspen Strategy Group Members


Madeleine Albright, Dina Powell McCormick, and Nicholas Burns in a Belfer Center discussion: “Out of Many, One: The Refugee and Immigrant Stories of Secretary Madeleine Albright and Dina Powell McCormick”


Robert Gates on CNN’s GPS with Fareed Zakaria


Jane Harman on MSNBC’s Mitchell Reports: “Fmr. Rep. Jane Harman: 'The World Should Be Paying Attention' to the Violence in Jerusalem”


David Ignatius in The Washington Post: “Middle East Countries are Learning to ‘Build Back Better’”


Nick Kristof in The New York Times: "What Your Taxes Are Paying For in Israel"


Joseph Nye in Project Syndicate: “The Logic of U.S.-China Competition”


David Petraeus on the French Accent podcast


Jack Reed in a Reagan Institute discussion: “Defense Priorities with Senator Jack Reed”


David Rubenstein interviews Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo on “The David Rubenstein Show: Peer-to-Peer Conversations”


David Sanger and Steven Erlanger in The New York Times: “U.S. and Iran Want to Restore the Nuclear Deal. They Disagree Deeply on What That Means.”


Philip Zelikow and Robert Blackwill in National Committee on U.S.-China Relations discussion: “The U.S., China, & Taiwan: Strategy to Prevent War”


Robert Zoellick in The Wall Street Journal: “The Trade Two-Step as Part of Biden’s Diplomatic Dance”

ASG Rising Leaders in the News


“When we talk about…our past, current, and future arms control and international security architecture, at the end of the day, it comes down to individual thinkers, negotiators, and leaders to breathe life into them.”


ASG Rising Leader Sahil Shah interviewed former Deputy Secretary General of NATO Rose Gottemoeller for the European Leadership Network.


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Tweet of the Week


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President of the Republic and

Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ghana


Wednesday, June 9

12:00 - 1:00 PM ET


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Things to Know

Stay Informed with Important Analysis Relevant to Aspen Security Forum Discussions


BBC News: “Israel-Gaza: Deaths Mount as Israel-Gaza Violence Worsens”


Bryan Bender in Politico: “Blame Game Begins as Afghanistan Situation Worsens”


Marisa Iati in The Washington Post: “How the Colonial Pipeline Hack Is Affecting Gas Prices and Supply”


Patrick Kingsley in The New York Times: “As Gaza War Escalates, New Front Opens in Israeli Cities”


Elizabeth Law in The Straits Times: “Muted Response in China to WHO's Approval of Sinopharm Covid-19 Vaccine”


David Miliband in Foreign Affairs: “The Age of Impunity: And How to Fight It”


George Parker and Murie Dickie in Financial Times: “Scotland Election Result Sets Up New Referendum Showdown”


Siladitya Ray in Forbes: “WHO Classifies Indian Covid-19 Mutation as a ‘Variant of Concern’”

Book of the Week


Doom: The Politics of Catastrophe

By Niall Ferguson

Setting the annus horribilis of 2020 in historical perspective, Niall Ferguson explains why we are getting worse, not better, at handling disasters.


“Disasters are inherently hard to predict. Pandemics, like earthquakes, wildfires, financial crises. and wars, are not normally distributed; there is no cycle of history to help us anticipate the next catastrophe. But when disaster strikes, we ought to be better prepared than the Romans were when Vesuvius erupted, or medieval Italians when the Black Death struck. We have science on our side, after all. Yet in 2020 the responses of many developed countries, including the United States, to a new virus from China were badly bungled. Why? Why did only a few Asian countries learn the right lessons from SARS and MERS? While populist leaders certainly performed poorly in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, Niall Ferguson argues that more profound pathologies were at work–pathologies already visible in our responses to earlier disasters.”

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As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the Aspen Institute is nonpartisan and does not endorse, support, or oppose political candidates or parties. Further, the views and opinions of our guests and speakers do not necessarily reflect those of the Aspen Institute.


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