Weekly Intel Update

Be the first to learn the latest intelligence news and get ready for the week ahead! *(week ending November 23)

Every Monday, SPY will bring you a Weekly Intelligence Update highlighting the previous week’s worldwide news events from espionage incidents to national security and general intelligence. Note: Linking to these stories does not constitute an endorsement from the International Spy Museum. As the Museum historian, I found many of these news stories were interesting (and that you might too).


The most important news stories of the past week, all in one place.  

AP: House Intel Panel Debunks Many Benghazi Theories 

US House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence: Report on Benghazi 

Politico: Republican Wall Crushes NSA Bill 

Washington Post: CIA Director John Brennan Considering Sweeping Organizational Changes 

Washington Post: Should The Central Intelligence Agency Be Less Centralized? 

Reuters: Iran Nuclear Talks Set To Resume Next Month after Missing Deadline 

The Atlantic: America Just Launched Its 500th Drone Strike 

New York Times: Eavesdropping on Pakistani Official Led to Inquiry Into Former U.S. Diplomat 

Wired: Finally, a New Clue to Solve the CIA’s Mysterious Kryptos Sculpture 

Roll Call: Former CIA Chief: Intel Community Can’t, on Its Own, Track Iranian Nuclear Development 

The Guardian: Spies, Sleepers and Hitmen: How the Soviet Union’s KGB Never Went Away 

Defense One: A Look Inside a Secret US Air Force Intelligence Center 

ABC News/AP: Putin Says He Won't Be Russia's President for Life 

Talking Points Memo: Feds Investigating Drone Sightings at NYC's John F. Kennedy Airport



Unfortunately, it’s doubtful we will go a week without stories about terrorism. 

CNN: ISIS comes to Libya

Huffington Post: Foreign Policy Issues Becoming a Headache? There's an AUMF for That

Defense One: The Real Reason ISIS Takes Hostages and Beheads Them

Reuters: Islamic State Attacks Iraq Provincial Capital

McClatchy: Islamic State Reportedly Buying Silver, Gold as It Prepares To Issue Currency

The Guardian: US to Arm Sunni Tribesmen in Iraq to Bolster Defense Against Islamic State

Bloomberg Businessweek: The Banality of Islamic State

Reuters: U.S. Seeks Ways to Stop Americans from Becoming 'Foreign Fighters'

The Daily Beast: ISIS: We Nabbed an Iranian Drone

US News and World Report: The Heavy Toll of a Drone War

The Daily Beast: Drone ‘Shortage’ Hampers ISIS War



Our old nemesis is back with a vengeance.  

National Interest: The Russian Army's Secret Weapon: Enter the Armata Program

The Economist: Russia Is Closer To Crisis than the West or Vladimir Putin Realize

Business Insider: Merkel Is Toughening Up Against Putin — And That Could Be Huge

Newsweek: Tiny Baltic States Prepare to Hit Back at Mighty Russia

Sky News: NATO Scrambles 400 Times Against Russian Planes

US Department of Defense: U.S. Delivers Radar Systems to Ukraine

The Hill: Obama Adviser: Arms For Ukraine ‘On the Table’

Reuters: Russia Warns U.S. against Arms to Ukraine as Biden Due in Kiev

Daily Beast: Eastern Ukraine Braces for ‘Full-Scale War’

France 24: Nearly 1,000 Killed In Ukraine Since Start Of Ceasefire: UN

Stars and Stripes: US Flying Over Russia to Take Photos under Open Skies Treaty

Reuters: In Pentagon Deal with Russians, Big Profit for Tiny Florida Firm



News about nuclear weapons, and the intelligence and national security ramifications they present. I will also include news about chemical, radiological, and biological weapons here as well (all the WMDs in one convenient location). 

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists: Nuclear War, the Black Swan We Can Never See

National Interest: The Danger of Derailing the Iranian Nuclear Deal

Council on Foreign Relations: Strategic Stability in the Second Nuclear Age

National Interest: Nuclear Negotiations: Applying North Korea Lessons to Iran

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists: How Does Religion Really Influence Iranian Nuclear Policy?

National Interest: Celebrating the Success of Project Sapphire

AP: Gambling Nuke Commander Linked To Fake Poker Chips

The Nation: How Ebola Could End the Cuban Embargo



Anything new in spy and defense science and technology. 

National Interest: Autonomous Weapon Systems: The Military's Smartest Toys?

Quartz: This Is Every Active Satellite Orbiting Earth

Lawfare: The Navy’s Scary New Death Ray

Breaking Defense: 47 Seconds From Hell: A Challenge to Navy Doctrine

US Naval Institute: Document: Report to Congress on Navy Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense

National Interest: THAAD: America's Super Shield against Ballistic Missiles?



Stories about the NSA, government transparency, and individual rights.

The Atlantic: American Surveillance Now Threatens American Business

Federation of American Scientists: Rep. Moran Urges Presidential Pardon for John Kiriakou

Huffington Post: Dianne Feinstein Says Torture Report Almost Ready For Release after Months of Delay

ABC News/AP: Before Snowden, a Debate Inside NSA

Reuters: Swedish Appeal Court Upholds Assange Detention Order

Federation of American Scientists: Some State Secrets Cases Are a Secret, Govt Says

Politico: Rand Doesn't Stand


The world of cyberwar and cyber-terrorism is the new normal. 

Politico: $3B Fed Cybersecurity Plan Stalls

Stars and Stripes: NSA Director: China Can Damage US Power Grid

IT World: The Top Infosec Issues Of 2014

Voice of America: Russia Plays Big Role in Cyber Spying, Hacking

The Guardian: Amnesty Backs Detekt Tool to Scan For State Spyware on Computers

Washington Post: VA Fails Cybersecurity Audit for 16th Consecutive Year



Stories from the UK and the Continent. 

Sky News: MI5 Spared Major Criticism Over Rigby Killing

Stars and Stripes: Frenchman, Other Europeans Seen In Latest Islamic State Beheading Video

The Telegraph (UK): Two British Jihadis 'Killed Fighting For Isil in Syria'



The US’s most significant global rival is making moves around the world as the US makes its “pivot”.

Popular Science: The Missiles of Zhuhai: China Displays New Strike Arsenal

National Interest: Can China Fall Peacefully?

The Diplomat: China’s Deceptively Weak Anti-Satellite Capabilities

Reuters: Japan Raises Military Profile In Naval War Games with U.S.

The Telegraph (UK): Kim Jong-Un In Pictures: The Bizarre Photoshoots Of North Korea's Leader

AP: North Korea Threatens To Beef Up Military Capability

The Korea Herald: North Korea Conducts Ejection Launcher Test for Submarine Missile



Because all the news from this hotly contested part of the world is not just terrorism news.

National Interest: Did Iran Just Create a Stealth Drone from Captured American Tech?

Reuters: China's Top Domestic Security Chief Visits Iran to Push For Anti-Terror Cooperation


News articles that highlight the secret history of history. 

Washington Post: John Downey, Judge and Former POW, Dies at 84

US Marine Corps: Marine Corps Heroes: Pvt. Chester Nez

XX Committee: Lingering OKBOMB Questions



All the news that doesn’t fit. 

Foxtrot Alpha: 50 Totally Stunning Combat Aircraft Photos Taken Around Alaska

Stars and Stripes: Bin Laden Shooter's Story Highlights Private Battles As Ex-SEALs Adjust To Civilian Life

Fusion: Mexican Millennials at the Forefront of Drug War Intelligence

Military.com: Army Expects up to 80 Female Soldiers to Apply to Ranger School

War on the Rocks: A Game-Changing Third Offset Strategy

Real Clear Defense: A Strategy to Save U.S. Military Superiority

War on the Rocks: Offset 3.0, or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Love Commercial Technology

Army Magazine: Special Operations For the 21st Century: Starting Over

War on the Rocks: America’s Overlooked Strategic Asset: Artists