USIP's Science, Technology & Peacebuilding Roundup


United States Institute of Peace


Center of Innovation: Science, Technology and Peacebuilding

Weekly News Roundup, March 28 - April 3, 2013

Table of Contents

**Click here to subscribe to USIP's Media, Conflict and Peacebuilding News Roundup,
which includes a special section on Internet and social media.**

Latest US Message to N. Korea: Missile Defense System Sent to Guam
The U.S. is deploying a ballistic missile defense system to Guam in the coming weeks, its latest response to daily threats and provocations from North Korea. The U.S. Navy stationed a missile defense ship southwest of the Korean Peninsula, and a sea-going radar could soon be moved into position to keep close watch on North Korea's launch site for long-range missiles.
See the full article (CBS News, 4/3/13)
[Return to top]

Cheap Drones Made in China Could Arm U.S. Foes
Cheap drones made in China could end up arming potential U.S. foes such as North Korea, Iran and terrorist organizations. Chinese manufacturers are touting their plans to build drones five or even 10 times cheaper than comparable U.S. drones, whose hardware alone costs $5 million to $10 million. That means countries such as Syria might obtain Chinese drones for the surveillance or oppression of their own citizens.
See the full article (Mashable, Jeremy Hsu, 4/3/13)
[Return to top]

Stunning Before-and-after Satellite Photos Show Sectarian Devastation in Burma
In late March, as tension between Burma's Buddhists and its Muslim minority escalated. Human Rights Watch, as part of an extensive investigation into the violence, has released before-and-after satellite images showing the breathtaking extent of the damage, in which entire neighborhoods have been effectively wiped off the map.
See the full article (Washington Post, 4/3/13)
[Return to top]

North Korea Vows to Restart Shuttered Plutonium Reactor
North Korea said it will restart its long-shuttered plutonium reactor and increase production of nuclear weapons material, in what outsiders see as its latest attempt to extract U.S. concessions by raising fears of war. The nuclear vows and a rising tide of threats in recent weeks are seen as efforts by the North to force disarmament-for-aid talks with Washington.
See the full article (AP, Hyung-Jin Kim and Foster Klug, 4/2/13)
[Return to top]

Mapping Hate Speech to Predict Ethnic Violence
In the months leading up to the Rwandan genocide of 1994, the radio station Radio Television Libre des Mille Collines blanketed the country with anti-Tutsi propaganda. But what if the world had been monitoring Milles Collines before the killing started? That's the idea behind Hatebase, a Canadian group that aims to use social media and other technology to identify early warning signals for ethnic conflict.
See the full article (Foreign Policy, Joshua Keating, 4/1/13) *Foreign Policy sign-up may be required to view the full article
[Return to top]

New Manual Explains Laws of Cyberwarfare
Under international law, if Nation A fires a missile at a military base in Nation B, Nation B has the right to defend itself with lethal force. But what if Nation A uses a cyberattack to cause an explosion at a military base in Nation B? Or what if, in the midst of an armed conflict, a cyberattack from Nation A knocks out power at a hospital in Nation B? Was that target off limits under international law?
See the full article (RFE/RL, Heather Maher, 4/1/13)
[Return to top]

Technology, Transparency, and the Kenyan General Election of 2013
After the chaos of the 2007 elections, the Kenyan government used a higher level of technology in the 2010 Constitutional Referendum and various by-elections to enhance the credibility of results. The plan was that the 2013 elections would represent a technological apex for voting. The vision was to use technology for two key aspects of the voting process.
See the full article (Al Jazeera, Warigia Bowman and Brian Munyao Longwe, 3/29/13)
[Return to top]

Egypt's Navy Intercepts Internet Cable-cutting Scuba Saboteurs
According to an Egyptian army colonel, the country's naval forces intercepted and arrested three scuba divers attempting to slice underwater internet cables. It's not clear who the alleged culprits are, or who they represent. Considering what a huge part the internet played in the country's 2011 revolt, it would be surprising if any opposition activists were involved. It's in fact the new government, rather than the opposition, which has been voicing a desire to block undesirable channels.
See the full article (, Liat Clark, 3/28/13)
[Return to top]

Click here to subscribe to USIP's Media, Conflict and Peacebuilding News Roundup,
which includes a special section on Internet and social media.

Did we miss anything?



Share this: FacebookDeliciousDiggMySpaceStumbleUponGoogleMicrosoftYahoo! BookmarksLinkedIn| Forward this to a Friend