Signals & Space Monthly Cyber Security Briefing

November 2017

Prepared by the CyberWire (Wednesday, November 1, 2017)—Developments in Signals and Space, from October 1st through October 31st, 2017.

Economic sanctions against North Korea tighten.

Most countries have adopted stringent economic sanctions against North Korea, Russia being the most significant exception. As sanctions continue to bite, the DPRK has turned to large-scale cybercrime, conducted principally through the Lazarus Group, state-directed threat actors operating through infrastructure located for the most part in China and India. The Lazarus Group has been responsible for a number of high-profile wire transfer frauds.

The most recent attribution of a major hacking incident to North Korea came this month from the British government, which has placed responsibility for this year's WannaCry ransomware outbreak on the North Korean government. Pyongyang has denied the attribution and has threatened the UK with severe but unspecified retaliation.

Missile and nuclear proliferation.

The two nations drawing the most concern about proliferation are Iran and North Korea. With the future of the nuclear agreement with Iran in question, as the US considers increasing sanctions and Iran considers an accelerated missile development program, observers remain at a loss with respect to diplomatic approaches to resolving regional tensions. Tehran has announced testing of a new missile system, the Khorramshahr, an evolutionary improvement on the Shadhab series, ultimately derived from the Soviet-era Scud with the assistance of North Korean technology sharing.

The US has approved the sale of air defense missile systems to Saudi Arabia.

Matters in North Korea are more clear cut, and more ominous. The US and its regional allies Japan and South Korea have upgraded their readiness posture in East Asia, and, while Russia remains an irritant in US attempts to assemble a diplomatic coalition to contain North Korea's increasingly worrisome nuclear strike capability, there are small signs of a rapprochement between Beijing and Seoul.

North Korean nuclear tests have hitherto been conducted underground, but the country's leaders have spoken about testing a missile-launched weapon in a high air-burst over the Pacific. This suggests Pyongyang may be entertaining the use, or at least threatening the use, of a nuclear device as an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) weapon. Thermal and blast effects of a high-altitude detonation would be negligible, but could have devastating effects on electronics. Not only might ordinary command, control, communications, and computers be affected catastrophically by an EMP attack, but many believe that regional power grids themselves could be disrupted. If an EMP attack were to stress major hardware items to destructions, power grids could take months (by some estimates as much as eighteen months) to recover.

North Korea advancing solid-propellant technology.

North Korea is reported to be testing solid-propellant motors suitable for use in long-range strike missiles. Solid propellant is attractive for many reasons of safety, reliability, quick-reaction capability, and an ability to maintain high levels of readiness.

Missile defense research and development.

DPRK long-range missile tests have prompted the US and its allies to test deploy existing missile defense systems, but most defense observers would like to be able to repose more confidence in such systems. The US Department of Defense is undertaking a comprehensive review of missile defense R&D, with the intent of rendering a report to the President by the end of this year outlining the work necessary to advance a new generation of technologies as well as evolutionary enhancements of existing capabilities. Billions in spending are expected, details of which are expected to be forthcoming after the report has been released and assessed. One item believed to figure prominently in the Pentagon's wishes is $128 million for new Ground-Based Interceptor silos (perhaps as many as twenty) at Fort Greely, Alaska.

GPS and GPS alternatives.

The US continues to maintain and upgrade the Global Positioning System (of course), with the Air Force declaring the first Lockheed Martin produced GPS III satellite ready for launch. This final acceptance is the last milestone before the GPS III is flown in 2018.

Concerns about GPS reliability and availability, raised by evidence earlier this year of GPS signal spoofing in the Black Sea, have spurred ongoing work to develop alternatives. Northrop Grumman is testing one such alternative, a system the uses the company's All Source Adaptive Fusion (ASAF) software to guide aircraft in a GPS-denied or -degraded environment. The solution integrates "absolute (fixed) and relative (mobile) navigation technologies." Testing was carried out in cooperation with the US Air Force Research Laboratory and the Office of Naval Research. Northrop Grumman anticipates application of the technology to ISR, cargo delivery, targeting, and strike missions.

Battlefield communications look toward space (but also must function in cities).

US Services increasingly look toward space-based assets to provide reliable tactical-level communications. The Navy has awarded Raytheon a contract modification: $14.8 million for additional Navy Multiband Terminals. 

The Army's long-standing program of record, WIN-T, remains, although it has been refocused and most of its elements renamed "tactical networks." In the near-term the Army expects to push secure satellite communications down to the tactical level.

It's also working to streamline its command posts, seeking to avoid the large and relatively fixed command-and-control establishments that have grown up as features over a decade and a half of counterinsurgency operations. One major program is the Command Post Computing Environment (CP CE) designed to provide a simpler, more perspicuous operating picture.

Much of the work directed toward such improvements has been prompted by a renewed sense of the importance of being able to fight peer or near-peer adversaries. Another concern is the realization that combat in the near future is likely to take place in urban areas. This has direct implications for cybersecurity, involving as it does a projected reliance on interaction with highly distributed networks whose endpoints include not only typical user communication devices, but also IoT sensors and drones.

Widely used commercial shipboard satellite communication systems found vulnerable to cyberattack.

Researchers at cyber firm IOActive found two serious vulnerabilities in an Inmarsat SATCOM platform widely used in the maritime shipping industry. AmosConnect 8 is susceptible to exploitation through a backdoor that could give an attacker full system privileges. It's also vulnerable to SQL injection though its login form.

AmosConnect 8 will not be patched. It reached its end-of-life in June, so users who wish for a more secure SATCOM solution will have to replace and upgrade their systems.

Commercial space services (launch and other).

SpaceX continues, apparently, to satisfy its customers. It believes itself on track to complete nineteen launches during 2017. The company on October 9th launched ten Iridium satellites aboard a Falcon 9 flow from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. On October 11th another Falcon put a communications satellite into orbit from Cape Canaveral, Florida. And in November the company intends to fly an undisclosed payload for Northrop Grumman. Called "Zuma," the nature of the mission has not been publicly disclosed.

The US Air Force has awarded SpaceX $40.7 million to continue development of its advanced Raptor engine.

Industry notes.

Big aerospace integrators Boeing, Northrop Grumman, and Lockheed Martin are expected to reinforce their investment in space services, products, and solutions. Honeywell, which had considered divesting its defense and aerospace business, has changed its mind, deciding instead to double down.

More acquisitions follow last month's pick-up of Orbital ATK by Northrop Grumman. Boeing has purchased two companies with expertise in autonomous and uninhabited flight systems: Aurora and Near Earth Autonomy. Polaris Alpha, based in Colorado Springs, bought Denver's Solidyn Solutions, which specializes in engineering and cloud-based solutions for Defense and Intelligence Community customers.




Today's edition of the CyberWire reports events affecting China, the European Union, Iran, the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea, the Republic of Korea, Russia, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Selected Reading

Attacks, Threats, and Vulnerabilities (8)

Marketplace (23)

Products, Services, and Solutions (11)

Technologies, Techniques, and Standards (16)

Research and Development (8)

Legislation, Policy, and Regulation (26)

Events (18)

Attacks, Threats, and Vulnerabilities

North Korea denies involvement in WannaCry cyber attack (The Financial Express) North Korea has slammed Britain for accusing it of being behind a global ransomware attack that hit the National Health Service, calling the allegation a "wicked attempt" to further tighten international sanctions against Pyongyang.

North Korea threat of above-ground bomb test serious, US says (Military Times) North Korea’s threat to detonate a hydrogen bomb above the Pacific Ocean is being treated as credible based on the regime’s past actions, U.S. officials here said.

North Korea says 'a nuclear war may break out any moment' (Military Times) North Korea’s deputy U.N. ambassador warned Monday that the situation on the Korean peninsula “has reached the touch-and-go point and a nuclear war may break out any moment.”

Two Critical Vulnerabilities Found In Inmarsat's SATCOM Systems (Threatpost) Researchers are warning of two critical vulnerabilities in global satellite telecommunications company Inmarsat's SATCOM systems that could allow attackers to infiltrate a ship's on-board computer system.

Backdoor Account Found in Popular Ship Satellite Communications System (BleepingComputer) A popular satellite communications (SATCOM) system installed on ships across the world is affected by two serious security flaws — a hidden backdoor account with full system privileges access and an SQL injection in the login form.

Cyber security 1: Satellite constellations' mass markets come with vulnerability (Space Intel Report) Cyber security experts said the arrival of multiple satellite constellations threatens to make satellite networks just as vulnerable as terrestrial systems, with potentially disastrous consequences. The democratization of the satellite sector — many players, off-the-shelf technologies and a “build your own satellite” approach — is likely to wipe out the advantage …

New missile test feared as S. Korea-US drill starts (The Straits Times) South Korean military officials are preparing for another possible missile launch by the North as a five-day joint military drill with the United States kicks off today.. Read more at

The World Once Laughed at North Korean Cyberpower. No More. (New York Times) While the world is fixated on its nuclear missiles, North Korea has also developed a cyberattack program that is stealing millions and unleashing havoc.


10 Major Cloud Storage Security Slip-Ups (So Far) this Year (Dark Reading) Accenture is the latest in a string of major companies to expose sensitive cloud data this year, following Verizon, Deloitte, and Dow Jones.

IT concerned about losing jobs while industry worried about IT talent shortage (Help Net Security) While the cybersecurity industry is trying to manage a shortage of qualified professionals, 56% of these fear they’ll lose their jobs should a breach occur.

SpaceX unlocks “steamroller” achievement as company eyes 19 launches in 2017 (Ars Technica) "I think we will see them grab an even bigger slice of the market."

Air Force Adds More Than $40 Million to SpaceX Engine Contract ( The U.S. Air Force has provided SpaceX with an additional $40.7 million to support continued development of the company's Raptor engine.

Top Pentagon contractors keen on space business ( Top defense firms with large space portfolios like Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Northrop Grumman are likely to benefit as space increasingly is viewed as a “contested environment” where the United States will be challenged by rising powers.

Might Europe follow the US model of commercializing space? One CEO hopes not. (Defense News) The American “low-cost” approach to space investment, which relies on commercial space firms driving tech investment, could gain favor among some defense procurement officials in Europe. That, in turn, sparked industry concern.

M&A wave continues: Boeing announces acquisition of Aurora (Defense News) Aurora, which specializes in autonomy and unmanned aircraft, is a natural fit for Boeing, which will be able to profit off the smaller company’s expertise in both its commercial and defense business.

Boeing invests in autonomous flight technology maker Near Earth Autonomy (ZDNet) The companies will additionally explore the development and application of products in areas such as urban mobility.

Colorado Springs defense contractor acquires 100-employee Denver firm (Colorado Springs Gazette) Colorado Springs-based defense contractor Polaris Alpha has acquired Solidyn Solutions, a 100-employee company based in Denver that specializes in providing engineering and cloud-based technology to defense and intelligence customers.

Honeywell will retain its aerospace and defense business (Defense News) Although Honeywell considered spinning off its aerospace segment, it ultimately opted to double down on that business unit and break off two of its wholly commercial portfolios.

Orbital ATK Had Another Bidder Before Northrop (Aviation Week) An unidentified company bid for Orbital ATK before Northrop Grumman succeeded in securing the space, missiles and munitions provider last month for $9.2 billion, according to new securities filings and analysts who covered the ...

Lord neutral on recent merger and acquisition activity (Defense News) The Pentagon’s top acquisition official is remaining neutral following a trio of major defense merger and acquisition announcements.

Navy orders more satellite terminals (C4ISRNET) Raytheon has been awarded a contract modification for additional Navy multiband terminals.

Congressman Ruben Gallego Dedicates Mercury's New Advanced Microelectronics Center in Phoenix, Ariz. ( First DMEA-accredited facility dedicated to trusted digital microelectronics design and manufacturing for the defense industry

Raytheon Unveils New Mexico Engineering Hub for Range Monitoring, Telemetry Systems (ExecutiveBiz) Raytheon has unveiled a new engineering facility at the Sandia Science and Technology Park in  Albuquerque, New Mexico, to support the production of monitoring and telemetry systems for U.S. and allied forces. The company said Monday it expects to create up to 60 high-technology manufacturing positions at the new 72,000-square-foot engineering facility over the next six years. It represents...

State Dept OKs $113M Raytheon Air-to-Air Missile Sale to Japan (GovCon Wire) The State Department has cleared Japan's request to procure 56 AIM-120C-7 advanced medium-range air-

Harris to Develop Battlespace Comm Network for Asia-Pacific (American Security Today) Harris Corporation has received a $260 million order to develop an integrated tactical communications network as part of an Asia-Pacific country’s modernization program. The integrated network solution will include tactical radios, network planning, monitoring and routing software, and other systems and technology from Harris and partnering companies. (The Harris Falcon III® AN/PRC-158 Multi-channel Manpack (MCMP) …

The Danger Of Buying The Air Force's Next Ballistic Missile From The Lowest Bidder (Forbes) On Aug. 21, the U.S. Air Force announced it was awarding risk-reduction contracts to Boeing and Northrop Grumman for development of a successor to the Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile. Minuteman is one of three strategic weapon systems that collectively make up the nation's nuclear "triad."

Air Force has long to-do list for space operations, Wilson says ( As space becomes more of a contested domain, Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson says the Air Force needs to step up its game.

Air Force wants to apply success of Rapid Capabilities Office to other weapons programs (Defense News) The Army isn't the only service interested in increasing the use of

US joint surveillance plans could be scrapped in days (Defence IQ) A decision on whether to cancel the US Air Force’s long-awaited E-8 JSTARS (Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System) recapitalisation programme may be made public at the end of October, according to comments made by USAF Secretary Heather Wilson.

Army awards concept design contracts for Patriot radar replacement (Defense News) The Army has awarded concept design contracts for a new 360-degree radar for its future Integrated Air and Missile Defense system to replace Patriot to Raytheon, Lockheed, Northrop and Technovative Applications.

Lockheed Martin's $12.3B contract streak leads to 900 new local jobs (Orlando Business Journal) Missiles, fighter jets and more are causing this top defense contractor to grow its workforce.

Products, Services, and Solutions

SpaceX Is Planning a Mystery Launch for Northrop Grumman Next Month (Updated) (Popular Mechanics) The previously undisclosed mission is codenamed "Zuma," and no one knows what the payload is.

SpaceX targeting November for mysterious 'Zuma' launch from KSC (Florida Today) SpaceX is targeting November for the launch of a Falcon 9 rocket from Kennedy Space Center on a mission codenamed "Zuma" for Northrop Grumman.

Mercury Systems Announces Safety-Certifiable Multi-Core Solution for Avionics and Communications - ( BuiltSAFE ROCK-2 subsystem integrated with INTEGRITY-178 is aligned to FACE standard

Northrop Grumman to Provide Air-to-Ground Voice and Data Capability for Airline and Civil Aviation Communications (Northrop Grumman Newsroom) Northrop Grumman Corporation’s (NYSE: NOC) U.K.-based air traffic management subsidiary, Park Air Systems, is providing next-generation VHF radios to Rockwell Collins for its air-to-ground voice and data link...

GE Aviation and Teradata Form Strategic Partnership to Bridge the Gap Between Aviation Operations and Business ( GE Aviation and Teradata (NYSE: TDC), the leading data and analytics company, today announced a strategic partnership focused on providing business outcomes driven by analytics for the world's leading airlines.

Mercury Systems Receives $4.7M in Orders for Airborne Electronic Protection RF Microelectronics (GlobeNewswire News Room) Mercury Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:MRCY) ( announced it received $4.7 million in orders from a leading defense prime contractor for high performance radio frequency (RF) subsystems integrated into an advanced airborne electronic protection system. The order was booked in the Company’s fiscal 2018 first quarter and is expected to be shipped over the next several quarters.

U.S. Air Force Declares First Lockheed Martin GPS III Satellite "Available for Launch" (SpaceRef) Ushering in a new era of advanced Global Positioning System (GPS) technology, the U.S. Air Force declared the first Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT)-built GPS III satellite “Available for Launch.”

SpaceX launches communications satellite, lands booster (C4ISRNET) The dual-mission satellite will be shared by Colorado-based EchoStar and SES, a Luxembourg company.

SpaceX launches 10 more Iridium Communications satellites (C4ISRNET) Ten new satellites for Iridium Communications Inc. have been carried into orbit by a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

FedRAMP Tailored service baseline available for use (Fifth Domain) FedRAMP announced the release of their FedRAMP Tailored baseline program for cloud service provider use after two rounds of public comment on the program.

World View successfully launches its first stratollite from its Tucson HQ (TechCrunch) Stratospheric balloon launch startup World View has completed its inaugural launch from its new Tucson, Arizona-based headquarters, the company announced..

Technologies, Techniques, and Standards

Northrop Grumman Technology Helps Aircraft Navigate Accurately without GPS (Northrop Grumman Newsroom) Military aircraft and airborne weapon systems may soon be able to guide themselves to targets on land or sea without using Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite signals, thanks to new, high speed navigational...

Air Force develops plan to mitigate cyber threats (Dayton Business Journal) Cyber resiliency has become a real challenge for the U.S. Air Force as it continues to deal with new threats that require advanced approaches. Fortunately, the Air Force has developed a "Cyber Campaign Plan" that addresses this challenge.

Army wants next-gen situational awareness sensors (C4ISRNET) Under a contract with the Army’s Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate, Lockheed Martin will create a multi-modal sensor fusion testbed for technologies to enhance rotary-wing aircraft pilots in GPS-denied and degraded visual environments.

Navy enhancing its electronic warfare systems (C4ISRNET) Engility Corp. has been awarded a modification on a five-year contract to perform EW services for U.S. Navy and Australian aircraft.

DoD Pushing New Missile Defenses as Existing Technologies Age (Foreign Policy) A major new review of the country’s ballistic missile defenses is wrapping up, and the president is promising “billions” in funding.

Urban combat promises future comms snags (C4ISRNET) Communication in dense, urban environments will pose significant problems for military forces.

Turkey's New Missiles (Foreign Affairs) Alliance members who are concerned about the integrity of Turkey’s democratic institutions should work toward rebuilding their relationship with Ankara.

Satellite Communications Go Tactical (SIGNAL Magazine) U.S. military satellite communications is expanding to provide greater coverage of the tactical environment as part of its overall mission to serve the land, sea and air domains.

Navy to enhance electronic warfare receivers on board the EA-18G aircraft (Defense Systems) Updates to the AN/ALQ-218(V) 2 receiver will allow the Navy’s airborne electronic attack capabilities to detect enemy signals faster.

What Do We Need? Missile Defense. (Weekly Standard) When do we need it? Now.

Army missile defense chief: We are prepared to counter North Korean threat (Defense News) After a recent trip to the Asia Pacific region, the Army’s Space and Missile Defense Command commander said he is confident the service is postured well, both in the region and in the homeland, to defend against any possible missile attack from North Korea.

As North Korea threat looms, US Navy tests ballistic missile shootdown capability (Fox News) More than a dozen NATO warships participated in the successful shoot-down of a ballistic missile target near Scotland on Sunday, the latest such test of defensive measures amid North Korea's advancing nuke and missile programs.

Air Force clears first GPS III satellite for launch (C4ISRNET) Lockheed Martin's GPS III Space Vehicle 01 has been declared

Iran’s New Missile A Tweak, Not A Breakthrough (Breaking Defense) Apparently following North Korea’s playbook for getting under the skin of President Trump, Iran wheeled a new missile, named the Khorramshahr, through Tehran during a parade last week on Friday, held to commemorate the 1980 start of the Iran-Iraq war.

Army looks to streamline command post tech (C4ISRNET) In a faster-paced future operating environment, the Army must move away from large forward-operating bases and tactical operations centers.

Here's what the Army's tactical network for the future will look like (C4ISRNET) With some changes discussed, the Army is now taking a new vision to its tactical networks.

Research and Development

CACI Awarded $54.5 Million Contract for Research and Development for U.S. Army Space and Terrestrial Communications Directorate (BusinessWire) CACI International Inc (NYSE: CACI) announced today that it was awarded a task order, valued at $54.5 million if all options are exercised, to provide

North Korea Has Tested a New Solid-Fuel Missile Engine (The Diplomat) North Korean scientists tested a new solid fuel engine on October 2017. What system is it destined for?

Russia to test new missile ‘that can beat any defences’ (Times) Russia’s military is preparing to carry out test launches of its next generation of intercontinental ballistic missile, a weapon it claims is capable of beating any defences. A picture of the RS-28...

AFRL Miniaturizing Intelligence Pod (SIGNAL Magazine) The system is a multiintelligence, open architecture, flight-line reconfigurable pod designed for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.

Blue Origin just sent a jolt through the aerospace industry (Ars Technica) "As Joe Biden would say, this is a BFD for the space industry."

Air Force Research Lab tests high power electromagnetic EW & cyber weapons (Defense Systems) High-power electromagnetic systems could pave the way for non-lethal, non-kinetic weapons in future military operations.

BAE Developing New Cyber Threat Detection System For Military Aircraft (Defense Daily Network) BAE Systems is growing its platform for future military aircraft cyber contracts with a program to gather its proprietary system analysis and reverse engin

The Army is developing navigation tech to help the GPS-denied soldier (C4ISRNET) The Army is pursuing a range of initiatives to bolster wayfinding for those cut off from the usual means of guidance.

Legislation, Policy, and Regulation

EU may struggle to prove cyber attack links, warns expert (ComputerWeekly) EU governments are reportedly planning to respond to cyber attacks as an act of war, but a cyber security expert says links to nation states may be hard to prove.

Cybercom Establishes Strategic Concepts to Mitigate Cyber Threats to Natl Security - Executive Gov (Executive Gov) The U.S. Cyber Command has developed an operational approach to defensive cyber operations and strat

The Cyber Cold War (Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists) Is the Cyber Mission Force prepared?

Let’s not risk a Cold War in space (San Francisco Chronicle) As we note this month Sputnik's 60th anniversary, which launched the space race between the Soviet Union and United States, it's worth considering whether we're on the cusp of another Cold War, but this time in space. Some 10,000 miles above the Earth's surface, conflicts between the United States and China could break out over orbiting satellites, which enable everything from your cell phone calls to bank transactions to GPS navigation.

South Korea, China mending fences over THAAD, Seoul says (UPI) Kang Kyung-hwa suggested Monday new developments in relations between Seoul and Beijing could help the two governments turn a corner on THAAD.

A New Strategy for Deterrence and Rollback with North Korea (War on the Rocks) On Tuesday, Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan said of North Korea that the current U.S. “focus is on diplomacy to solve this problem that is presente

N.K. unlikely to talk until securing ICBM capability that levels playing field: Robert Gallucci (Yonhap News Agency) Former U.S. nuclear negotiator Robert Gallucci said Monday that North Korea might not be interested in talks on its nuclear and missile programs until it secures an intercontinental ballistic missile capability that levels the playing field with the U.S.

Trump’s North Korea Threat-Theater Is Working (Observer) North Korea has a choice: Chinese intervention and survival or Madman Trump’s war of annihilation.

Japan Needs Long-Range Strike Capabilities (Defense One) Ballistic-missile defense systems alone can’t ward off regional threats. Tokyo needs firepower to deter its enemies.

Corker and Cotton’s False Promises Would Push Iran Toward Nuclearization (Foreign Policy) The Republican senators want to keep the JCPOA while adding new restrictions. It won’t work.

House Democrat: New sanctions will make Iran 'come begging to us' (Washington Examiner) 'If we do enough, they will come begging to us to have negotiations on all the pending issues, including the inadequacies of the nuclear dea...

(LEAD) S. Korean military eyes new operation plan against N.K. threats (Yonhap News Agency) South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) chairman said Monday that the military is considering a new operational plan to counter "advanced" threats from North Korea.

China and Russia call for restraint after Trump tweets on North Korea (South China Morning Post) Russia and China called for restraint on North Korea on Monday after US President Donald Trump warned over the weekend that “only one thing will work” in dealing with Pyongyang, hinting that military action was on his mind....

North Korea lawmaker: We need nukes because of US threat (Military Times) A high-ranking North Korean official says the country’s development of nuclear weapons is necessary for deterrence because of the threat posed by the United States.

Lawmakers Block Mini-Satellites That Could Spy on North Korea ( Congressional spending panels have rejected a Pentagon request to transfer $50 million into developing small commercial satellites to monitor adversaries such as North Korea.

Trump's speech sparks a new war of words between US, Iran (Military Times) President Donald Trump’s refusal to certify the Iran nuclear deal has sparked a new war of words between the Islamic Republic and America, fueling growing mistrust and a sense of nationalism among Iranians.

Russia throws North Korea lifeline to stymie regime change (Reuters) Russia is quietly boosting economic support for North Korea to try to stymie any U.S.-led push to oust Kim Jong Un as Moscow fears his fall would sap its regional clout and allow U.S. troops to deploy on Russia's eastern border.

North Korea accuses US of imposing an 'economic blockade' (Military Times) North Korea’s U.N. ambassador accused the United States on Tuesday of imposing “an economic blockade” on his country and deploying nuclear assets on the Korean Peninsula aimed at toppling leader Kim Jong Un.

Trump to stay in Iran nuclear deal, asks Congress to revise enforcement (Military Times) President Trump's proposed alternative would seek to include Iran's ballistic missiles, destabilizing activities in amended sanctions law.

Trump plans to declare that Iran nuclear deal is not in the national interest (Washington Post) The move would punt the issue to a reluctant Congress and could lead to blowing up the agreement altogether.

Iran deal's future may hinge on face-saving fix for Trump (Military Times) The future of the Iran nuclear deal may hinge on a face-saving fix for President Donald Trump so he doesn’t have to recertify the Islamic republic’s compliance every 90 days, according to U.S. officials.

US clears THAAD sale to Saudi Arabia (Defense News) The U.S. State Department has cleared a potential $15 billion request for Saudi Arabia to purchase the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system.

Hackers wanted: Special ops leaders seek soldiers who can fight the enemy up close and online (Army Times) Already in high demand for their rare and elite skills, special operations soldiers need to add one more capability to their toolbox: cyber.

DoD still working toward CYBERCOM elevation (C4ISRNET) The item currently setting the pace is the nomination and confirmation of a new commander that will lead the unified combatant command.

Coming soon: Ministry of Defence’s cyber, space, special operations divisions (The Indian Express) According to sources, the proposals for the three new formations — Defence Cyber Agency, Defence Space Agency and a Special Operations Division — are with other ministries for approval as the resources for them have to come from “accretion and not under save-and-raise”.

Mattis tells Congress off over NDAA cyber provisions, CMO post expansion ( Defense secretary Mattis gave Congress a list of grievances regarding the 2018 defense authorization bill, including the Space Corps and cyber measures.

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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