In a recent podcast, Lawfare posted the recording of the "From Within" panel, which took place on September 27 at the 2019 Texas Tribune Festival. Bobby Chesney, Strauss Center Director and James Baker Professor in Law, joined panelists, including Nick Rasmussen, Senior National Security Fellow at the Strauss Center, in discussing a host of issues related to domestic terrorism, which he defined as an instance of terrorism in which the nature of the threat does not maintain significant foreign ties. Chesney further discussed the legal nuance of domestic terrorism, noting that while there is currently no domestic terrorism statue on the books, there are several other federal statues which could apply to incidents of domestic terrorism, particularly those using explosives. A major loophole he highlighted is that there is no statute for the use of guns or vehicles an act of violence committed without foreign ties. The panel discussed several subtopics of domestic terrorism, including the pros and cons of a domestic terrorism statute, the need for a “whole of government approach” in mitigating domestic terrorism, and role of social media in mitigating and inspiring acts of domestic violence. Listen to the full podcast here.

Joshua Busby, Distinguished Scholar at the Strauss Center, co-wrote an essay for the 26th Volume of Energy Strategy Reviews. In his essay, “One more try: The International Solar Alliance and India's search for geopolitical influence,” Busby analyzes the intention’s behind India’s cofounding of the International Solar Alliance (ISA) jointly with France at the 2015 Paris Climate Conference. The ISA is the first international organization headquartered in India and primarily aims to promote solar electricity in the sunshine belt of states mostly between the tropic of Cancer and tropic of Capricorn. India has had recent successes with the establishment of a fellows program to share lessons learned, solar export credits, and pooling credit risks for borrowing.

In a recent article published in the September issue of the AsiaPacific Issues journal, Dr. Wenhong Chen discusses the unfolding AI, Big Data, and Cloud Computing (ABC) race between the United States and China. Dr. Chen’s analysis focuses specifically on two components: the comparative strength of the U.S. and China in data and research and development, and the state of ABC policies in both countries.

Stephanie Leutert, Director of the Central America and Mexico Policy Initiative at the Strauss Center, recently authored an article for the national security law blog Lawfare. In her article “One County, 650 Migrant Deaths: An Introduction,” she introduces a series of essays on the deaths of 650 people in Brooks County, Texas, between 2009 and 2019 while attempting to circumvent a nearby Customs and Border Protection checkpoint. 

Joshua Busby, Distinguished Scholar at the Strauss Center for International Security and Law, co-edited an essay collection for a CFR publication titled Impact of Climate Risk on the Energy SystemIn his essay, “A Clear and Present Danger: Climate Risks, the Energy System, and U.S. National Security”, Busby argues the severity and speed of climate change constitutes a national security threat. He argues that policymakers ought to consider the national security implications of climate change across a host of issues, not solely its effects on military capacity. In the US context, he identifies four national security threats which could result from climate change impacts on energy systems, namely: 1) power outages in communities near military bases which in turn disrupt electricity and other services on site at military bases (2) risks of power outages in communities that require military mobilization for domestic humanitarian emergencies (3) risks of cascading negative effects on other systems dependent upon electricity such as hospitals, transportation, and information as a result of damages at home from climate change related hazards and (4) risks of international cascading effects if important parts of the energy supply chain are affected by climate impacts internationally. He concludes by providing four recommendations for policymakers and further identifying the types of analytical assessments which further research could undertake to establish a more comprehensive analysis of the national security implications of climate change. Read the full collection of essays here.