July 23, 2014
SITUATION REPORT

Despite ongoing peace efforts and growing international criticism of Israel’s invasion of Gaza, Israeli officials seem in no hurry to end their Gaza operation in light of the large number of tunnels and weapons uncovered over the past five days. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday emphasized the need for Hamas to end the conflict, a shift from controversial comments made over the past few days that were critical of Israel for the Gaza invasion.

Israel Presses Gaza Offensive, Undeterred by Negative Press
Israeli soldiers evacuate their wounded at an army deployment area near Israel's border with the Gaza Strip on July 23, 2014. (JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images)
Stalemate Over Iranian Nuclear Talks a Win for Tehran
July 21, 2014
A decision to push off the deadline in the already glacially slow and complex Iranian nuclear talks, an outcome predicted by LIGNET, represents a tactical advantage for Tehran. As long as the West prefers talk over confrontation, Iran is likely to stay on course toward full nuclear status, a national priority that dates back decades.
More Than Bad Weather to Blame for Plunge in GDP
July 21, 2014
Special Economic Analysis
by Peter Warburton, PhD


The resurgence of the U.S. economy this year was thrown into doubt by an unexpected plunge in national output in the first quarter. Arguably, this was the worst performance on an annualized basis outside of an outright recession since World War II. While the extraordinary weather that pervaded January through March must take a large part of the blame, it turns out that several other factors played a part. While the White House has been at pains to brush off the dismal figures as a weather-related freak occurence, the second-quarter rebound has a lot to prove.
Putin on Hot Seat for Hindering Probe of Plane Crash
July 21, 2014
SITUATION REPORT

As evidence mounts of Russian culpability in shooting down a Malaysia Airlines flight over Ukraine on July 17, pro-Russian separatists reportedly are trying to hide evidence related to the crash, including moving the missile system that downed the plane into Russian territory and keeping the plane’s black boxes from international investigators.

Saudi-Iranian Proxy War Thwarts Progress in Yemen
July 18, 2014
As Saudi Arabia and Iran continue to face off over a fractured Iraq, the Sunni and Shia religious rivals increasingly find themselves engaged in a standoff in Yemen, more than 1,200 miles to the south. Yemen is already struggling to maintain order, and its fragile political gains are in danger if the ancient sectarian conflict escalates within its borders.
Hamas Rockets Inflicting Severe Damage — on Hamas
July 18, 2014
The Hamas campaign of firing rockets into Israel from Gaza has had little practical effect, other than severely degrading the Islamist group’s own image across the region. The Hamas rejection of an Egyptian cease-fire initiative (which Tel Aviv respected) will infuriate the Egyptians and end any chance of loosening their blockade, while retaliatory airstrikes by Israel have significantly degraded Hamas arsenal, storage and rocket-manufacturing facilities.
Israel Targets Hamas Rocket Threat in Ground Invasion of Gaza
July 18, 2014
SITUATION REPORT

After negotiations and a brief cease-fire failed to bring about a settlement agreement in the 10-day Israel-Gaza conflict, Israel Thursday night began a ground invasion of Gaza to wipe out Hamas’ rocket capabilities and dismantle an extensive network of tunnels used by the militants to infiltrate Israel.
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