Signals & Space Monthly Cyber Security Briefing

October 2017

Prepared by the CyberWire (Monday, October 2, 2017)—Developments in Signals and Space, from September 1st through September 30th.

North Korea makes good on its nuclear and missile test threats.

North Korea this month tested another long-range ballistic missile. The flightpath took it over Japan, to Japan's discomfiture, and the missile is generally thought to be capable of delivering a warhead to its target. Such doubts as to whether the system was capable of doing so seem now to have been false hopes.

Pyongyang also conducted another nuclear test. The device in this one is believed to have produced a yield of around 125 kilotons, which is reckoned to be large even by the standards of established nuclear powers. Reports differ as to whether it was a fusion weapon (a "hydrogen bomb") or a boosted implosion fission weapon. The reported yield is thought to render the latter possibility more likely. Most observers think that the device has been engineered into a deliverable weapon. This is often called "miniaturization," but in truth a weapon doesn't need to be all that large in the first place, physically, to function, and it needn't be all that small to be delivered by a missile.

North Korea's government and the US Government have been heavily engaged in a war of words, the two countries leaders calling one another, respectively, "dotard" and "rocket man." Kim's regime has promised to rain fire on the US, Japan, and South Korea. Of course, they've said things like this often enough in the past, but demonstrated possession of both weapon and delivery system are attracting more serious attention. The United Nations voted sanctions against North Korea, but these are milder than the United States and some of its allies would have wished. Strict, but short of the full embargo they desired.

Most discussion of the North Korean nuclear threat have focused properly on the risk it poses to human life. There is, however, an odd sort of gradualism behind much of North Korea's activity, which suggests that, should it actually decide to strike, it would do so in a way that's not immediately lethal. There have been warnings of the effects an underwater burst in the Pacific would have (fallout, at least). There's also a real but less-discussed possibility of a high-altitude weapon detonation designed to cripple electronic systems with electromagnetic pulse (EMP). Operators would do well to consider how their C4ISR might be hardened against EMP.

International response to North Korean tests.

The US has stepped up readiness in the Western Pacific and the Korean peninsula, fielding additional missile defense assets and patrolling in international airspace and waters close to the North Korean coast. China has shown signs of increased military readiness and talked about stiffer economic sanctions, but how stiff those sanctions actually are is a matter of some dispute. 

South Korea and Japan have also increased readiness, and begun more serious investment into missile defense systems. The US Department has asked Congress to reprogram $416 million for missile defense.

Boeing executives have said that the US could shoot down any inbound North Korean ICBMs, but that's a large claim few are willing to credit at face value, even after recent successful tests of US missile defense systems.

Rising concerns over Iran's avowed missile and alleged nuclear programs.

Iran and the US continue their running dispute over whether Iran is already cheating on the nonproliferation agreement that country concluded with the US. The US alleges cheating and threatens cancellation of the agreement. Iran denies the charges and has increased work on it own missile systems in response to expressions of US hostility.

The two countries most concerned by the possibility that Iran is cheating are the US and Israel. Reports suggest that Israel is prepared for unilateral military action should Iran appear ready for a nuclear breakout. Many observers think the nonproliferation agreement flawed, but still better than the alternatives.

Cyber activity rises with kinetic tensions.

Sanctions have left North Korea with a very large unsold inventory of coal, the country's principal export. It's turned therefore to cybercrime to make up its financial shortfalls. This month much of the activity has been observed targeting the new and relatively poorly understood cryptocurrency markets. The Pyongyang-associated Lazarus Group is also being watched closely.

Iranian threat actors have also been busy, but their work has tended to espionage rather than theft. FireEye has been reporting on APT33, which Tehran has used to install spyware in its targets systems. Those targets have been for the most part Western defense and aerospace companies.

Many have asked what's become of US offensive cyber operations. Can't something like the Stuxnet malware used against Iranian uranium refinement centrifuges be deployed agains North Korea, at least? The answer is of course publicly unknown, but there've been few signs of such an offensive against DPRK missile and nuclear programs.

GPS worries, and attempts to assuage them.

The GPS spoofing incident that took place in the Black Sea early this summer continues to arouse concern. These concerns have been exacerbated by the US Navy's series of collisions over the past year. The Navy has gone to some low-tech recovery of manual navigational arts. The US Air Force is pursuing a high-tech approach. Air Force Special Operations Command has taken delivery of Rockwell Collins' Digital GPS Anti-Jam Receiver (DIGAR), said also to provide resistance to spoofing.

Industry notes.

The month of September has seen news of both contract awards an aerospace industry consolidation.

The biggest acquisition news is Northrop Grumman's agreement to buy Orbital ATK. Northrop Grumman agreed to pay $7.8 billion in cash and assume $1.4 billion in debt with the acquisition. The merger will give Northrop Grumman considerable launch and satellite manufacturing capability. Orbital's stable of launch vehicles includes the Pegasus, Minotaur, and Antares rockets.

Boeing was quick to react to the news by saying that it, too, intended to be "a buyer," as Leanne Caret, CEO of Boeing Defense, Space and Security put it. She declined to say any more about acquisition plans, beyond remarks about the company's focus on growth. Boeing has contracted with SES to deliver seven medium-earth-orbit satellites.

Lockheed Martin has introduced its new family of satellite buses: LM 50 nanosat series, the upgraded LM 400 legacy small satellite bus, the mid-sized LM 1000, and the LM 2100, an enhanced version of the AS2100 bus.

In a cyber play, ManTech announced that it would acquire InfoZen, with plans to improve its position in the Federal IT modernization market.

The US General Services Administration has awarded a $2.5 billion indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contract with a ten-year period of performance to fifteen companies. The Complex Commercial SATCOM Solutions contract (CS3) is designed to enable Government organizations to purchase commercial satellite communications services easily under this GSA vehicle.

Check Point has been hired by Sky and Space, a nanosatellite telecommunications provider, to provide cybersecurity services to Sky and Space ground and space communication platforms.

Commercial space operations, and more business for both SpaceX and Blue Origin.

SpaceX continues to win business from competitors. It now has the launch contract for the Air Force's X-37B uninhabited spaceplane. Boeing formerly had the work, but SpaceX is now apparently the reliable low-cost launch provider. The X-37B flew on a Falcon 9 from Cape Canaveral on September 7th, just before Hurricane Irma hit Florida. SpaceX plans to have a fully reusable launch vehicle, one that would require little or no reconditioning before being returned to flight, sometime in 2018.

Thailand's mu Space, a start-up space operations company, has given its business to Blue Origin.

Rapid acquisition programs and continuing resolutions.

As Fiscal Year 2017 comes to a close, the US Congress will again keep the Government running with a continuing resolution as opposed to a formal budget. Some observers fear that the now-routine practice of continuing resolutions introduce an element of uncertainty into contracting that's inimical to innovation. There's risk enough in taking a shot already without adding budgetary uncertainty to the mix.

One of the more significant features of US Cyber Command's elevation to the status of a Combat Command is taken to be the access it will receive to rapid acquisition instruments. These are expected to give it an agility in procurement that won't be quite as nimble as the rapidly shifting technological environment in which CYBERCOM operates, but that's expected to help keep it closer to the cutting edge than legacy acquisition systems can.

NGA wants to share its data with you, if you'll share your cutting-edge tech with NGA.

An interesting offer was made by US National Geospatial Agency Director Cardillo this month. He's willing to sway NGA's data with companies in exchange for access to their creative technologies. NGA has a lot of data, and data are what industry needs, especially when it comes to training artificial intelligence.

Ambitions for the moon, or Mars.

With all the grim news surrounding Iran and (especially) North Korea, it's pleasant to turn to some of the more visionary plans for spaceflight.

Lockheed Martin unveiled its concept for a Mars mission (to be undertaken by NASA) at the 68th International Astronautical Congress (IAC) in Adelaide, South Australia. The company described its proposed Mars Ascent Descent Vehicle (MADV), a reusable lander for getting to (and getting back from) Mars. It also described its Mars Base Camp, which would orbit the Red Planet and enable exploration.

SpaceX of course isn't to be outdone, either. Elon Musk shared his company's vision for not only Moon Base Alpha, but Mars City.



Today's edition of the CyberWire reports events affecting Australia, China, Iran, Israel, Japan, the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea, the Republic of Korea, Russia, Thailand, and the United States.

Selected Reading

Attacks, Threats, and Vulnerabilities (8)

Trends (1)

Marketplace (24)

Products, Services, and Solutions (11)

Technologies, Techniques, and Standards (8)

Design and Innovation (2)

Research and Development (12)

Legislation, Policy, and Regulation (29)

Litigation, Investigation, and Law Enforcement (2)

Events (25)

Attacks, Threats, and Vulnerabilities

North Korea nuclear test: Hydrogen bomb 'missile-ready' (BBC News) North Korea says it has successfully tested a nuclear bomb that could be loaded onto a missile.

US military assesses North Korea tested H-bomb as country conducts another launch (Military Times) The Sept. 3 North Korean test had the signature and size of a hydrogen bomb, Gen. Hyten said.

Scientists Tell Us What Would Happen If North Korea Detonated a Hydrogen Bomb Underwater (Motherboard) North Korea’s underwater nuclear test seems more and more likely—but what happens after the bomb goes off?

Suspected mass-spoofing of ships’ GPS in the Black Sea (Naked Security) One ship’s navigation system reported that it was actually on land

Nuclear-armed North Korea also has a stockpile of a deadly nerve agent (NBC News) The Center for Nonproliferation Studies estimates North Korea has between 2,500 and 5,000 metric tons of chemical weapons.

Alarm as North Korea fires missile over Japan (Times) North Korea fired a ballistic missile over Japan early this morning in a calculated gesture of defiance after the latest round of sanctions imposed by the United Nations security council. The...

China may not be able to stop North Korea’s nuclear ambitions (South China Morning Post) Pyongyang has indicated it will do whatever it takes to build up its arsenal even if it can no longer rely on Beijing’s support

China's military practices for 'surprise attack' over sea near Korea (Reuters) China's air force has carried out exercises near the Korean peninsula, practicing to defend against a "surprise attack" coming over the sea, Chinese state media said.


The Cyber Security Mega Cycle Aftermath (Optiv) During the past decade, we have witnessed a virtual explosion in the cyber security world. While serving as CEO of McAfee and FireEye, and a U.S. Army commander and CIA director, respectively, we have lived through and witnessed first-hand exponential growth in: threats, threat actors, reported breaches, security vendors, investments in security companies and probably most significantly, private and public sector security spending.


Northrop Grumman to Acquire Orbital ATK for $9.2 Billion (Northrop Grumman Newsroom) Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC), a leading global security company, and Orbital ATK, Inc. (NYSE: OA), a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, today announced they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Northrop Grumman will acquire Orbital ATK for approximately $7.8 billion in cash, plus the assumption of $1.4 billion in net debt.

Northrop Grumman's Unit Wins $125M Contract From US Navy ( Northrop Grumman Corp. 's NOC unit, Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., has secured a contract to offer support to the AN/APR-39 program.

Mercury Systems Receives $3.8M Order for Advanced Electronic Warfare Application ( Mercury Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:MRCY) (, announced it received a $3.8M order from a leading defense prime contractor for high-performance radio frequency (RF) and microwave modules integrated into an advanced electronic warfare system.

Boeing says it’s a 'buyer' after Northrop Grumman acquisition of Orbital ATK (CNBC) Boeing executive Leanne Caret says the company is looking to make acquisitions.

Boeing to Manufacture Seven MEO Satellites for SES’ New Network (Via Satellite) SES has contracted Boeing to build seven Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) satellites for its new network system, O3b mPower. According to SES, O3b mPower will deli

Boeing Unveils ICBM Program Suppliers (Aviation Week) Boeing has assembled a non-exclusive supply base of 22 firms supporting its next-generation intercontinental ballistic missile program for the U.S. Air Force.

15 local companies picked for a $2.5B satellite communications contract (Washington Business Journal) Comsat Inc. is one of 15 local companies selected for a $2.5 billion contract designed to bring innovative commercial satellite communications to federal agencies.

Leonardo eyes work on NATO cyber command (Fifth Domain) Leonardo is looking at further work if and when NATO stands up a fully fledged cyber command.

ManTech International snaps up InfoZen in $180M ‘perfect storm’ (Washington Business Journal) ManTech International Corp. is acquiring InfoZen for $180 million in cash in a deal that brings together two government technology contractors with an eye on the IT modernization business.

NSA Quietly Awards a Classified $2.4B Tech Contract, With More to Come (Defense One) CSRA won the first of three NSA Groundbreaker contracts to upgrade parts of the intelligence community’s IT infrastructure.

Spacex will have decades of commercial launch dominance ( In 2018, Spacex could fully master reusable rockets that require no refurbishment for relaunch after landing. Spacex is already the low cost launch leader.

Australia to contribute to future NASA spacecraft (Defence Connect) A leading defence and aerospace prime confirmed its Australian team will have its virtual reality solution used on the CST-100 Starliner capsule, while also announcing its latest agreement with an Australian SME.

In space, entrepreneurs see riches ... at a distance (San Francisco Chronicle) Patrick Bahn believes it doesn’t take rocket science to see the potential for riches in space. But he knows reaching for the skies will require rocket engines.

Data Link Solutions, ViaSat win more JTRS work (C4ISRNET) Data Link Solutions and ViaSat have been awarded increased ceilings for their contracts for Multifunctional Information Distribution System Joint Tactical Radio Systems (MIDS JTRS) terminals.

BAE continues fight for $300M CACI intell award (Washington Technology) BAE Systems has filed a fresh protest now that CACI International has won a $300 million Army intelligence contract for the second time.

L3 gets Compass Call contract, names Gulfstream as airframe provider (Defense News) Following an August decision by the Government Accountability Office to deny protests from Bombardier and Boeing, the Air Force awarded L3 Technologies the systems integrator contract for the program, which is now known as EC-X,

Retired Boeing satellite exec to head EO startup Hera Systems ( Roger Roberts ended an eight-year stint as the head of Boeing space and intelligence systems in 2005 as his unit’s marquee classified contract, the Future Imagery Architecture constellation of optical and radar reconnaissance satellites, was facing cancellation.

Jacobs wins DISA IT contract (C4ISRNET) The company will provide test, evaluation and certification support services at two Defense Information Systems Agency facilities.

Air Force awards cloud contract (C4ISRNET) The five-year $1 billion Cloud Hosted Enterprise Services contract was awarded to a team consisting of Dell EMC, General Dynamics and Microsoft.

Army to halt $6 billion WIN-T program amid major network restructuring plan ( The Army is asking Congress to reallocate more than $500 million in fiscal 2018 alone and cancel the giant WIN-T program.

NGA wants to swap years of government data for industry know-how ( NGA is exploring the idea of trading decades' worth of its data to commercial firms in exchange for help with AI and advanced computing algorithms.

Pentagon asks Congress to move $416M for missile defense (Defense News) The Pentagon is asking Congress to reprogram $416 million allocated for various military accounts to pay for missile defense programs as the Trump administrations mulls military responses to North Korea’s recent belligerence.

Could a continuing resolution put innovation on ice? (Defense News) Pentagon leaders want to integrate innovation into antiquated acquisition systems, but a CR may threaten progress.

Congress Must Do More To Speed Up DOD Cyber Acquisitions (Law360) Millions of times each day, adversaries scan the U.S. Department of Defense’s networks seeking vulnerabilities. Because cyberthreats evolve so quickly and the DOD isn’t keeping pace, a catastrophic failure looms. Among the problems with the way this fight is being prosecuted are stifling acquisition procedures that make the DOD too slow for cyber.

Products, Services, and Solutions

Sky and Space signs Check Point for satellite cybersecurity (ZDNet) Check Point has been signed on to provide cybersecurity services for nano-satellite telecommunications provider Sky and Space Global's space and ground communication platforms.

AFSOC receives new anti-jam GPS receiver (C4ISRNET) Air Force Special Operations Command taken delivery of next-generation Digital GPS Anti-Jam Receiver (DIGAR) technology from manufacturer Rockwell Collins.

SpaceX Swipes Boeing's Military Space Shuttle Business ( The scoreboard this month reads Boeing (NYSE: BA) -- 5: SpaceX -- 1.* So why is SpaceX grinning, and Boeing is groaning?

All in the Family: Lockheed Martin Introduces New Satellite Lineup (PRNewswire) Today Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) debuted a new family of...

7 Startups Working to Secure Communications (Nanalyze) Secure communications are what keep us from disclosing our secrets to bad people. We look at 7 startups that are using technology to secure digital assets.

Elbit unveils tracker for dismounted forces (C4ISRNET) The SmarTrack system enables dismounted soldiers, special forces and first responders situational awareness in GPS-denied environments.

BlackSky taps Thales Alenia to build constellation of 60 fast-revisit EO satellites ( BlackSky CEO and founder Jason Andrews announced the partnership Sept. 15 during the closing day of Euroconsult’s World Satellite Business Week here.

New constellation to reshape Earth observation market (Room, The Space Journal) Withe the aid of the SpaceDataHighway, Airbus plans to reshape the Earth observation market with its Pléiades Neo constellation

Blue Origin selected as launch provider for satellite startup mu Space (TechCrunch) Thai space startup mu Space will launch its first geostationary satellite with Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin, the companies announced today at the International..

Elon Musk’s Plan to Girdle Earth With Satellites Hits Turbulence ( Elon Musk’s ambitious plan to surround the Earth with thousands of internet-beaming satellites is encountering turbulence from regulators concerned about interference with competing systems.

This 'Einstein Box' helps F-22s secretly communicate with unstealthy planes (We Are The Mighty) Multi-domain command and control could be the one thing that gives American troops a decisive edge in the next war.

Technologies, Techniques, and Standards

Boeing Defense CEO: If North Korea launched a missile right now the US would be safe (CNBC) Boeing executive Leanne Caret said the current missile defense system Boeing has would protect the continental U.S. from an attack.

No, We Cannot Shoot Down North Korea’s Missiles (Defense One) It's time national leaders speak realistically about missile defense.

Cyber is being normalized with traditional military operations (Fifth Domain) Cyber effects are being normalized and integrated into traditional operations, especially in the Middle East, according to the region's top U.S. military commander.

For DoD cyber warriors, offense and defense is interchangeable (Fifth Domain) Creating a cyber warrior class, the Department of Defense and Cyber Command sought offensive and defensive forces trained to the same joint standards, allowing them the ability to switch roles and to better understand each other.

For the Air Force, it’s all about data (Defense News) As the Air Force looks at new unmanned platforms for the future, it will now be asking itself what types of data these platforms can provide and what answers they can give to commanders.

Protecting US assets in space (Defense News) Although the attention given to missile defense is warranted, protecting space assets cannot be ignored. At the Defense News Conference, leaders in both domains discussed the challenges involved in protecting some of America's most valuable assets.

Air Force activates two space tracking satellites (C4ISRNET) The Air Force has activated two space-based tracking satellites for the Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program.

Air Force launching 'shadow operations center' at Nellis AFB to drive MDC2 ( The Air Force is standing up a multidomain command-and-control experimentation center, dubbed the "shadow operations center" at Nellis Air Force Base, NV, to turn ideas gleaned from this year's Enterprise Capabilities Collaboration Team into operational realities.

Design and Innovation

The military turns to machines to fight machines [Commentary] (Defense News) Machine-aided cyber warfare attacks developed by nation states are posing a growing threat to national security.

Marine Corps looks to 3-D printing to make spare parts downrange (Defense News) The Marine Corps is looking to additive manufacturing as a possible method to build spare parts rapidly in the field, which could reduce the heavy burden of a long logistics tail out to the tactical edge.

Research and Development

Lockheed Martin reveals Mars landing plans (Xinhua) U.S. defense, aerospace and security giant Lockheed Martin on Friday revealed plans for a Mars lander and a base camp.

Elon Musk shares images of “Moon Base Alpha” and “Mars City” ahead of IAC talk (TechCrunch) Elon Musk is giving us a sneak peak of what he'll be talking about in just a few hours at the International Astronautical Congress in Australia. The SpaceX..

SpaceX aims to replace Falcon 9, Falcon Heavy, and Dragon with one spaceship (TechCrunch) When Elon Musk took the stage at the International Astronautical Congress today to expand on the Mars plan he revealed at the event last year, he started..

SpaceX plans to use spaceships for Earth passenger transit (TechCrunch) Elon Musk was at IAC showing off his ambitious plan to ultimately make Earth an interplanetary species, and one of the new pieces of his plan he revealed was..

China Is Another Step Closer to Building a Quantum Internet (Motherboard) China's quantum satellite just facilitated the first intercontinental video call secured using quantum encryption.

Army turns to Plan X to defend against cyber threats (Defense Systems) Plan X software and hardware uses traditional warfare tactics to protect the Army from cyber attacks.

Air Force to spend next year reevaluating its multibillion-dollar S&T portfolio ( A yearlong study will examine the entire Air Force research enterprise, with a particular focus on investing more funds in university-based research.

US ICBM Intercept Paves the Way Toward High-Tech Defenses For Threats 10-Years Away ( The Multi-Object Kill Vehicle can simultaneously destory ICBMs and decoys with a single interceptor

DHS funds secure apps projects (Fifth Domain) The Mobile Application Security, or MAS, projects are part of the Mobile Security research program at DHS’s Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency.

Future Spy Satellites Just Got Exponentially Smaller (Defense One) By changing the way microchips measure light, researchers are shrinking the size of space-based telescopes.

Air Force 3-star: “algorithmic warfare” needed for future ISR, combat ops (Defense Systems) Artificial intelligence and human-machine warfare will increasingly be vital for Air Force ISR operations as a way to keep pace with the speed and scale of information technology.

Here’s the technology in which DoD’s innovation hubs will be investing (Defense News) Leaders from four key Pentagon innovation centers have revealed what their groups will be focusing on in the next few years.

Legislation, Policy, and Regulation

The Korean Missile Crisis (Foreign Affairs) The North Korean nuclear threat is more dangerous than the Cuban Missile Crisis, and it is time for the U.S. government to pursue diplomatic options.

The Dangerous Misunderstanding at the Core of the North Korea Debate (The Atlantic) What the Trump administration has been threatening is not a “preemptive strike.” 

Escalating tension has experts simulating a new Korean War, and the scenarios are sobering (Los Angeles Times) The world well remembers the last war that broke out on the Korean peninsula. The next one could prove even more devastating.

North Korea sought mutual assured destruction relationship with U.S. in 2016: U.S. official (The Japan Times) North Korea told the U.S. government it wanted to establish a mutual assured destruction relationship with Washington when the two countries held informal

Why China Could Invade North Korea (The National Interest) Beijing might be compelled to act militarily if Pyongyang was attacked or collapsed on its own.

Opinion | The debate over the Iran deal is utterly perplexing (Washington Post) Great nations do not play games when it comes to their international agreements.

Does the Iran Nuclear Deal Have a Future? (Foreign Affairs) Iran is attempting to get European leaders to take a more active role in preserving the JCPOA nuclear agreement.

Trump, Netanyahu risk being party of two in opposition to Iran nuclear deal (Al-Monitor) US and Israeli leaders may find themselves, rather than Iran, isolated in questioning a solid international consensus on Iran, as attention turns to Syria.

Iran Nuclear Deal Critics Push Plan for ‘Global Economic Embargo’ (Foreign Policy) Memo outlines a “21st century financial version of Kennedy’s Cuba quarantine.”

Admiral: US tolerated cyber 'acts of war' over last decade (Washington Examiner) 'The international community did not even really come out strongly and say, 'this is unacceptable, you cannot go after critical infrastructu...

When is a cyber attack an act of war? We don’t know, warns ex-Obama adviser (VentureBeat) As warfare becomes increasingly digital, countries are facing a major problem: It's hard to define when a cyberattack constitutes an act of war. Avril Haines, a former deputy national security adviser during the Obama administration, said today that while there are established norms around what counts as a physical act of war, those same metrics don't exist for digital attacks.

Forget the Latest UN Sanctions: It's Time to Squeeze North Korea (The National Interest) Past administrations have not employed the full range of American power.

U.N. agrees to toughest-ever sanctions against North Korea (Washington Post) The U.S. and its allies pushed for a full embargo.

U.S. allies in Asia welcome new sanctions on defiant North Korea (Reuters) Major U.S. allies in Asia on Tuesday welcomed the U.N. Security Council's unanimous vote to step up sanctions on North Korea, with its profitable textile exports now banned and fuel supplies to the reclusive North capped after its sixth nuclear test.

Prime Minister Abe calls for stronger defenses amid concern over North Korea (The Japan Times) Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Monday called for boosting the country's defenses in the face of North Korean threats, warning that Tokyo needs to be able to

NATO chief: North Korea requires global response (POLITICO) Military alliance will focus on bringing a peaceful solution to nuclear stand-off, Jens Stoltenberg said.

How Russia quietly undercuts sanctions intended to stop North Korea’s nuclear program (Washington Post) Just as China is finally cracking down, Russian profiteers step in to aid Kim Jong Un.

The Iran Deal Is on Thin Ice, and Rightly So (Foreign Policy) The Trump administration has a compelling case that Iran’s regional conduct makes the JCPOA no longer sacrosanct.

The Case for Caution With Iran (Foreign Affairs) A more aggressive U.S. approach to Iran would carry serious risks—not least placing Tehran and Washington on a path toward confrontation that would further destabilize the Middle East.

The Case Against the Iranian Nuclear Deal Is One Big Lie (Foreign Policy) There’s no reason to trust any of the Trump administration’s criticisms of, or plans for replacing, the JCPOA.

A Reset for Iran and the United States (Foreign Affairs) When it comes to Iran, the best option for the United States is also the least popular one: a long-term plan for repairing relations and resolving the Middle East's cold war.

U.N. Report: Sanctions Aren’t Stopping North Korea’s Nuclear Program (Foreign Policy) The U.S. campaign to hammer North Korean sanctions-busters is turning into an international game of whack-a-mole.

Opinion | Fire, fury — and confusion (Washington Post) North Korea explodes a nuclear device, and the world sputters.

Trump Is Right. Nuclear Talks With North Korea Are Pointless. ( But that doesn't mean war is the only option.

Nebulous Language Enables Tehran’s Missile Ambitions (The Cipher Brief) The single most reliable indicator of an intent to acquire nuclear weapons is the pursuit of long-range ballistic missile programs.

Military Intelligence Officers Call for Expanded Space Assets (SIGNAL Magazine) While space has always been an important domain for military intelligence, the intelligence community is renewing its emphasis on the stars.

New NASIC unit stood up during re-designation ceremony (daytondailynews) The National Air and Space Intelligence Center stood up the Integrated Command, Control, Communicati...

Trump’s pick for NASA lays out agenda and answers critics (Ars Technica) Jim Bridenstine likely to win fairly easy approval from Senate.

North Korea taps GOP analysts to better understand Trump and his messages (Washington Post) Despite all the public bombast, there have been behind-the-scenes efforts to meet.

Litigation, Investigation, and Law Enforcement

Exclusive: North Korea 'secretly helped by Iran to gain nuclear weapons', British officials fear (The Telegraph) North Korea’s sudden advancement in developing nuclear weapons may be due to secret support from Iran, British officials fear.

Treasury ratchets up pressure on North Korea, sanctioning 10 banks (POLITICO) The crackdown comes as the Trump administration searches for new ways to end North Korea's missile program amid rising tensions on the peninsula and throughout the region.

Compiled and published by the CyberWire editorial staff. Views and assertions in linked articles are those of the authors, not the CyberWire or Cosmic AES

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