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DEC 18, 2014

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un applauds during a meeting of security personnel of the Korean People's Army

Reuters/KCNA/Handout

North Korea and the Sony Hack:
How Will the U.S. Respond?

Yesterday, Sony announced it would not release The Interview, which centers on a plot to kill Kim Jong-un. The decision came after online threats on theaters screening the film. With officials confirming suspicions that North Korea was behind the November cyber attack on Sony, how will the U.S. respond? One option, according to RAND's Bruce Bennett: slipping Interview DVDs into the North. Read more »

A hostage runs toward police outside Lindt cafe in Sydney, December 15, 2014

A hostage runs toward police outside Lindt cafe in Sydney, December 15, 2014. Photo by Jason Reed/Reuters

What to Make of the Sydney Café Siege

After a 16-hour standoff in Sydney left two hostages dead, investigations have begun into the efficacy of Australia's anti-terrorism measures and details about the gunman's background and motives. At the same time, terrorism experts like RAND's Angel Rabasa are reflecting on where else such an attack could emerge. Read more »

Six children standing in front of a chalkboard during a math lesson

Photo by Digital Vision/Thinkstock

Summer Learning May Boost Math Skills

Summer learning loss takes a particular toll on low-income students, likely distancing them from their higher-income peers. But according to a new RAND study, students who attended voluntary summer programs returned in the fall with greater math skills than those who didn't attend the programs. Read more »

A man in a 'Hands Up, Don't Shoot' pose outside City Hall, New York City, December 10, 2014

A man in a “Hands Up, Don't Shoot” pose outside City Hall, New York City, December 10, 2014. Photo by Igor Mojzes/Fotolia

Can Big Data Help Build Trust in Police?

In the wake of the Michael Brown and Eric Garner grand jury rulings, a White House task force has 90 days to provide recommendations for promoting accountability among law enforcement agencies to cultivate community trust. That timeline may seem impossible, says Nelson Lim, but the solutions are well known. Read more »

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein (L) discusses a report on the CIA's anti-terrorism tactics, December 9, 2014

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein (L) discusses a report on the CIA's anti-terrorism tactics, December 9, 2014. Photo by Senate TV/Handout/Reuters

Did the CIA's Detention and Interrogation Program Keep the U.S. Safe?

Debate over the CIA's program of “enhanced interrogation techniques” revolves around two main questions: Was it illegal, and did it produce highly valuable intelligence that would've been otherwise unobtainable? Unfortunately, says James Dobbins, neither can be answered conclusively. Read more »

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani during a news conference at UN headquarters in New York City, September 26, 2014

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani during a news conference at UN headquarters in New York City, September 26, 2014. Photo by Adrees Latif/Reuters

Looking Ahead as Iran Talks Resume

With nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 resuming on Monday after yet another extension, many are wondering if a deal is possible, says Dalia Dassa Kaye. But she and her colleagues are examining a different question: What if a deal was done? What would it mean for Iran, the region, and U.S. policy? Read more »

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