Friday Flashpoints – Our Weekend Reading List

The Diplomat’s Editor selects the top five defense and foreign policy articles for your weekend reading pleasure.

Every Friday, The Diplomat’s Harry Kazianis looks out across the net to find the best articles and analysis involving defense, strategic affairs, and foreign policy. From America’s pivot to Asia, China’s growing military power, North Korea’s seemingly daily threats to the various territorial spats across the region, The Diplomat has you covered with what you need to know going into the weekend.

Here is our top five this Friday. Have we missed something you think should be included? Want to share an important article with other readers? Please submit your links in the comment box below! Happy Friday!


Is China Changing Its Position on Nuclear Weapons (New York Times) – “Interpreting any country’s pronouncements about its nuclear weapons can be a study in fine distinctions, but occasionally a state says — or fails to say — something in a clear break from the past. A Chinese white paper on defense, released on Tuesday, falls into this category and now demands our attention, because it omits a promise that China will never use nuclear weapons first.”


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USS Freedom Arrives in Singapore (DefenseNews) – “USS Freedom, the U.S. Navy’s first littoral combat ship, arrived in Singapore on Thursday, just over six weeks after leaving San Diego for the type’s first major overseas deployment, the U.S. Navy announced.”


Off to a Bad Start (Foreign Policy) – “Why is the president letting America’s nukes rust?”


North Korea Hints at Openness to Talks, Despite Still-Venomous Rhetoric (Washington Post) – “Government officials and security analysts in the region say North Korea is scaling back its campaign of threats and showing signs it wants to ease tensions with South Korea and the United States.”


U.S. Could Be World’s Most Populous Country (Yale Global) – “The United States could aim to have largest population in the world before the end of the century, thus ensuring its power.”