Today’s Headlines and Commentary

Emily Dai
Wednesday, October 27, 2021, 1:08 PM

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

Published by The Lawfare Institute
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The White House told allies in Congress that the climate portion of President Biden’s spending bill will likely cost between $500 billion and $555 billion, according to Politico. This would likely be the largest U.S.-government investment toward fighting climate change and decreasing emissions. 

Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned Wednesday that China’s test of a hypersonic weapons system is “very concerning,” says the Washington Post. Milley believes China is “very close” to the kind of Sputnik moment that triggered the space race. Chinese weapon capabilities in space, cyberspace, land, sea and air are “expanding rapidly,” according to Milley.

A nor’easter that brought hurricane-force winds across the northeastern part of the United States Tuesday left more than 400,000 individuals without power in Massachusetts and forced the closure of several public school districts, reports the New York Times. Scarred by the extreme weather this summer that left at least 43 people dead, officials moved quickly to prepare for the nor’easter. Both Gov. Hochul of New York and Gov. Murphy of New Jersey declared states of emergency on Monday.

The Biden administration announced Tuesday that Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman will lead the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, according to NPR. Wyman, a lifelong Republican, repeatedly refuted former President Trump’s unsupported claims of election fraud throughout 2020.

A Senate panel in Brazil voted Tuesday to recommend that President Bolsonaro face a series of criminal indictments over his handling of the coronavirus pandemic, says NPR. The 7-to-4 vote was a culmination of a six-month committee investigation of the government’s handling of the pandemic. Bolsonaro had repeated comparisons of coronavirus to the flu and claimed that the dangers of the virus were “exaggerated.  Brazil has recorded more than 606,000 deaths from coronavirus.

Lawyers for the United States asked British judges on Wednesday to extradite Julian Assange from Australia on espionage charges, says AP News. Assange, who founded WikiLeaks and published thousands of secret military and diplomatic documents, previously avoided extradition District Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled that he would likely commit suicide in a U.S. prison. 


ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Jen Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast in which Jacob Schulz spoke with Katrina Northrop to discuss Evergrande’s debt problems and its threats to the Chinese economy.

Stewart Baker shared an episode of the Cyberlaw Podcast, featuring: Michael Ellis discussing the takedown on the ransomware gang REvil; David Kris explaining Russia’s capabilities to censor and suppress criticism on domestic and Western platforms; Meredith Rathbone to talk about a new U.S. Commerce Department rule for the export of network intrusion tools; Paul Rosenzweig laying out the latest news on content moderation; along with a series of shorter updates.

Stefan Soesanto explained how the European Union’s cyber sanctions have been hampered by a variety of logistical and political factors.

Mark Nevitt offered a rundown of the four new climate security reports.

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

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