“Erdogan is playing to an anti-American domestic audience with his nuclear rhetoric, but is highly unlikely to pursue nuclear weapons.” - The New York Times quotes Jessica C. Varnum, an expert on Turkey at the Middlebury Institute's James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies in front page article. “There would be huge economic and reputational costs to Turkey, which would hurt the pocketbooks of Erdogan’s voters.”
The Boston Herald reached out the Sharad Joshi, associate professor in the Middlebury Institute's Nonproliferation and Terrorism Studies degree program to provide commentary on the consequences of hundreds of fighters, affiliated with the Islamic State, breaking free from camps in Northern Syria after attacks from Turkey on the Kurds who were guarding them.
The StraitTimes of Singapore interviewed Middlebury Institute Professor Jason Blazakis, director of the Center for Terrorism, Extremism, and Counterterrorism about a recent report he coauthored for the Soufan Center on "White Supremacy Extremism." Blazakis told the paper that, "The ground in Ukraine is fertile for white males with a sense of grievance and disenfranchisement, who believe multiculturalism is degrading white value."
ViceNews sought expert opinion, including from Joshua Pollack of the Institute's James Martin Center on Nonproliferation Studies, on what the latest North Korean missile tests means in terms of threat to the U.S. and U.S. allies and in general, what it says about the country's missile program.
A new Soufan Center report, co-authored by Middlebury Institute Professor Jason Blazakis, director of the Institute's Center on Terrorism, Extremism, and Counterterrorism, shows a growing number of foreign fighters who are right-wing extremists and white supremacists traveling to Ukraine to fight for either pro-Ukrainian or pro-Russian forces. "The bulk of those foreign fighters are coming from the near region,” Blazakis shared with Voice of America, pointing to 800 fighters from Belarus and hundreds more coming from Germany, Georgia, Serbia and dozens of other countries across Europe. “That’s, in some ways, not too different than what you saw with ISIS.”
The New Yorker published Associate Professor Philipp Bleek's letter to the editor in its October 7, 2019 edition. Bleek writes: "Dexter Filkins echoes a common misunderstanding when he, in his review of Samantha Power’s memoir, calls Bashar al-Assad’s deployment of chlorine gas in Syria “barbaric but not illegal” (“Damned if You Don’t,” September 16th). Under the Chemical Weapons Convention, which Assad reluctantly joined in 2013, the use of any chemical as a chemical weapon is banned. Yet, because chlorine has widespread nonmilitary applications, states are allowed to possess it, even after giving up their other chemical weapons. As a result, Assad has continued to have access to chlorine, though its use as a weapon remains just as illegal as that of any other chemical agent."
The term "Juche" is considered political ideology in North Korea. In English it has been translated to mean "self-reliance" but according to the Associated Press (AP) the term flummoxes many outsiders. To help explain, the AP turned to Joshua Pollack, North Korea expert at the Middlebury Institute's James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies: “The essence of it is that independent progress in science and technology is supposed to resolve national defense problems and economic problems alike."