Dec 28, 2019

U.N. ignores U.S. concerns and approves draft treaty on cyber crime

The United Nations General Assembly approved a Russian-drafted resolution to create a new international treaty to fight cybercrime — ignoring objections from the European Union and the U.S., AP reports.

Why it matters: The resolution creates an expert committee "to elaborate a comprehensive international convention on countering the use of information and communications technologies for criminal purposes.”

What they're saying: U.S. deputy ambassador Cherith Chalet said "the resolution will undermine international cooperation to combat cyber-crime at a time when enhanced coordination is essential," per AP.

  • Chalet also said, "it is wrong to make a political decision on a new treaty before cybercrime experts can give their advice."

Go deeper: Russia and China get a big win on internet "sovereignty"

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Tim Kaine says Senate has votes to pass Iran war powers resolution

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images.

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) said Tuesday that he's secured the 51 Senate votes needed to pass a revised version of his war powers resolution, which would require President Trump to seek approval from Congress before taking further military action against Iran, per the AP.

Why it matters: The bipartisan resolution, which has the backing of Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Todd Young (R-Ind.), illustrates the degree to which the Trump administration's actions against Iran have tested the president's Republican allies.

Go deeperArrowJan 14, 2020

"52 targets": Trump tweet sparks Iranian furor

Iranians march behind a vehicle carrying the coffin of Qasem Soleimani in the northeastern city of Mashhad. Photo: Mohammad Taghi/Tasnim News/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. and Iran are trading stunningly specific threats, with President Trump tweeting Saturday night that the military could target 52 Iranian sites — including some "important" to Iranian culture — and an Iranian commander pointing to "35 U.S. targets in the region as well as Tel Aviv."

Why it matters: This rhetoric suggests the off-ramp from a hot conflict may be fading, with Trump's warning about cultural sites prompting Iranian officials to accuse the president of flouting international law and threatening war crimes.

Go deeperArrowJan 5, 2020

House passes war powers resolution condemning military action against Iran

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

The House voted 224-194 on Thursday in favor of a symbolic war powers resolution directing President Trump to halt the use of military force against Iran unless he obtains approval from Congress.

The big picture: A classified briefing Wednesday on the killing of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani left Democrats and even some Republicans deeply skeptical, with many claiming that officials did not provide evidence that there was an "imminent" threat from Iran.

Go deeperArrowJan 9, 2020