From: Homeland Security News Wire
To: Scott Jenkins,
Subject: Maliki says he is staying put | Android apps security flaw | Climb walls like geckos
Date: Thu Jun 19 12:54:08 MDT 2014
Body:
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DAILY REPORT
Thursday 19 June 2014 vol. 8 no. 141

In Today's Issue

Iraq
Maliki says he will not step down to facilitate U.S. air strikes against ISIS

A spokesman for the Iraqi prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, has said Maliki will not stand down in order to make it politically easier for the United States to launch air strikes against ISIS Sunni militants who have made rapid advances across Iraq, culminating yesterday (Wednesday) with taking control over Iraq’s largest oil refinery, located in Baiji, 130 miles north of Baghdad. The Islamists now control a third of Iraq’s territory. Many U.S. lawmakers, and many analysts of Iraq, consider the failed leadership Maliki -- a Shi’a politician who, at Iran’s urging, has pursued a narrow sectarian policies which has alienated Iraq’s Sunnis and Kurds -- as the reason for the willingness of the Sunni population in Iraq to welcome ISIS as a protector of Sunni interests, and the indifference shown so far by the Kurds in the face of ISIS gains.

ISIS insurgents take over Iraq’s largest refinery, continue advance toward Baghdad

Earlier this morning (Wednesday) ISIS Islamic militants took over Iraq’s biggest oil refinery, located near the town of Baiji, 130 miles north of Baghdad. The fall of the refinery is a major blow to the already-reeling government of Nouri al-Maliki. The refinery provides about 40 percent of Iraq’s refined oil needs, and if the supplies dry up, the Iraqi economy would be paralyzed within a few days, and Iraqi citizens would be without power or gas for their cars. As was the case since the ISIS campaign began late last week, the Iraqi military and security forces put up only a token resistance, with most of their units melting away and leaving their arms and equipment behind without even engaging the militants. Iraq is the second largest oil producer in OPEC.

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Iraqis want to know the reasons for army’s rapid collapse

One of the more puzzling questions raised by the ease – and speed – with which a rag-tag group of Islamist insurgents gained control over about one-third of Iraqi territory is this: What happened to the Iraqi army that caused it to collapse in less than three days – three days in which, in any event, it hardly engaged in any fighting? What brought the curtain down on a force in which the United States had invested billions of dollars, a force which, according to two American administrations, was the best trained and armed military force in the Arab world? There are those in Iraq who believe the answers lie not in the military but rather in the political realm.

Cybersecurity
Security flaw: Researchers find thousands of secret keys in Android apps

Researchers have discovered a crucial security problem in Google Play, the official Android app store where millions of users of Android, the most popular mobile platform, get their apps. "Google Play has more than one million apps and over 50 billion app downloads, but no one reviews what gets put into Google Play -- anyone can get a $25 account and upload whatever they want. Very little is known about what's there at an aggregate level," says one of the researchers.

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Cybersecurity education
Carnegie Mellon recognized for excellence in cybersecurity education, research

The NSA and DHS have designated Carnegie Mellon University as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense Education and a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense Research for academic years 2014 through 2021. As a CAE, Carnegie Mellon will continue to be eligible to participate in federal scholarship and research opportunities.

In the trenches
Technology allows human to climb like geckos

Historically, gaining the high ground has always been an operational advantage for soldiers, but the climbing instruments on which they are frequently forced to rely -- tools such as ropes and ladders -- have not advanced significantly for millennia. DARPA’s Z-Man program has demonstrated the first known human climbing of a glass wall using climbing devices inspired by geckos. The historic ascent involved a 218-pound climber ascending and descending twenty-five feet of glass, while also carrying an additional 50-pound load in one trial, with no climbing equipment other than a pair of hand-held, gecko-inspired paddles.

Homeland Security, Criminal Justice, Law & Public Policy - Master of Science Legal Studies 100% online - CALU Global Online
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Resilience
NIST plans new Centers of Excellence for disaster resilience, forensics

Officials at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have announced plans to establish two new research Centers of Excellence to work with academia and industry on issues in forensic science and disaster resilience. NIST plans to hold merit competitions to establish the centers, tentatively planned to be funded at up to $4 million a year for five years.

Addressing international disaster resilience for U.S., partner countries

While national security efforts seek to prevent terrorist attacks, the United States an partner countries should also prepare to work together to mitigate the effects of a terrorist attack, should such efforts fail. A new report from the National Research Council (NRC) discusses the challenges around the United States and partner countries responding cooperatively.

Also noted

Terrorism trial in Britain sparks accusations of excessive secrecy | Blowing money on the border | Report: Department of Homeland Security little affected by sequestration | Disaster pilot project seeks better alternative to FEMA trailers | Spanish police target cells recruiting war volunteers | Senators: Spending bill would boost efforts to secure nuclear material | "Systematic" chemical weapons use in Syria

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Homeland Security, Criminal Justice, Law & Public Policy - Master of Science Legal Studies 100% online - CALU Global Online
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Progress and Modernity in Arab Societies
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