Today’s Headlines and Commentary

Emily Dai
Monday, October 4, 2021, 12:16 PM

Lawfare’s daily roundup of national security news and opinion.

Published by The Lawfare Institute
in Cooperation With

The Chinese government marked its National Day Holiday with the largest incursion into Taiwan’s airspace over the weekend, reports the New York Times. While these flights did not suggest any imminent threat of war, they did reflect the Chinese government’s desire to claim Taiwan and its willingness to resort to military force if necessary. Nearly 80 Chinese aircraft entered Taiwan’s “air defense identification zone” and prompted the island nation to send its own fighter jets to monitor the planes. As western countries increasingly support Taiwan, the latest incursions by the Chinese government send a warning to the international community not to back Taiwan.

A bomb killed several civilians at a mosque in Kabul where people were attending a memorial service for a chief Taliban spokesperson’s mother, according to AP News. While there was no immediate claim of responsibility, suspicions fell on Islamic State extremists, who have a stronghold on eastern Afghanistan. The explosion underlined the mounting challenges facing the Taliban as they try to defend against rival militants and prevent an economic collapse. 

The Supreme Court on Monday affirmed that $3.6 billion in defense funds can be used for border wall construction, reports Law360. The one-paragraph ruling did not explain their reasoning for vacating an earlier ruling from the Ninth Circuit appeals court.

Syrian President Bashar Assad called Jordan’s King Abdullah II on Sunday, the first conversation between the two leaders since the start of Syria’s civil war, says AP News. The call was the most recent attempt to thaw relations between the leaders. Syria’s state news agency SANA reported that the conversation was made to reinforce “cooperation in the interests of the two countries and people.”

Russia reported a record number of coronavirus deaths for four of the past six days, with new infections surging amid a fourth wave caused by the Delta variant and a low vaccination rate, reports the Guardian. Independent polls have shown that Russians are skeptical of Russian-made vaccines, which are the only type being distributed. While the Kremlin has urged regions to take steps to slow the spread of coronavirus, the government has been reluctant to impose nationwide restrictions.

The Turkish government said Friday that the recent purchase of three French warships by the Greek government will harm the NATO alliance, according to AP News. Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgic stated that the security deal, worth 3 billion euros, was a bilateral military alliance against Turkey. Greece and Turkey have been at odds over air and sea rights in the Mediterranean and Aegan sea for decades, and this deal will strengthen Turkey’s resolve to protect its maritime rights.

President Biden acknowledged frustrations with Democrats on their failure to reach an agreement on his $3.5 trillion infrastructure bill Saturday morning, reports NPR. Additionally, Biden plans to negotiate with senators to work through the debt ceiling dilemma this week.


ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Raphael S. Cohen explored what the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan implies for future wars, such as confrontations with China and Russia.

Email the Roundup Team noteworthy law and security-related articles to include, and follow us on Twitter and Facebook for additional commentary on these issues. Sign up to receive Lawfare in your inbox. Visit our Events Calendar to learn about upcoming national security events, and check out relevant job openings on our Job Board

Emily Dai is a junior at New York University studying Politics and Economics. She is an intern at Lawfare.

Subscribe to Lawfare