Strauss Center Distinguished Scholar and Former Director, Dr. Francis Gavin, was recently featured in an MIT news article announcing his appointment as the first Frank Stanton Chair in Nuclear Policy Studies. He will work in MIT's Security Studies Program, which with a recent $5 million endowment gift from the Stanton Foundation, will be strengthened to bring together scientists, military personnel, and academics in diverse fields to create a "truly interdisciplinary environment" engaged with nuclear issues.

In a recent interview for Fox News' Good Day Austin, Strauss Center Distinguished Scholar Dr. Jeremi Suri discussed the current status of the Syrian conflict. In the interview, he describes the "rough balance" that exists between government forces—mostly Alawites supported by Russia and Iran—and the predominantly Sunni rebel forces, stronger in terms of population size. For Suri, given the present interests and balance of forces, this conflict is likely to continue for a couple more years.

In the January 2014 edition of Choice, books by Strauss Center Distinguished Scholars Jason Brownlee and Zoltan Barany were were selected as “Outstanding Academic Titles” for 2013. Choice is a review of academic libraries, and the list reflects the best titles reviewed by the publication each year. Dr. Brownlee’s book, Democracy Prevention: The Politics of the U.S.-Egyptian Alliance and Dr. Barany's book, The Soldier and the Changing State: Building Democratic Armies in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas were selected as top titles in the Political Science category.

UT Professor and Strauss Center Distinguished Scholar Jason Brownlee was quoted in an article in The National on the future of Egyptian politics. The article, which focuses on the potential Presidential candidacy of Military Chief Abdel Fattah el Sisi, discussed the impact his candidacy might have on Egyptian civilian-military relations and the relationship between the U.S. and Egypt. The article explains that in recent months, the Obama Administration has stayed relatively silent with respect to Egypt’s future, signifying either frustration with the Egyptian political process or acquiesce and acceptance of the role of the Egyptian military. Professor Brownlee, an expert on U.S.-Egypt policy, elected for the latter, noting that many in the U.S. want a leader in Egypt who can “stabilise the country” and that many in the State Department and the Pentagon would be “comfortable” with a military President who could provide that stability.

In a recent article in The National Interest online, Strauss Center Distinguished Scholar Dr. Eugene Gholz discussed the dramatic changes that are occurring in the American defense industry. In his co-written article with Harvey Sapolsky, End of the Line, Gholz points out that this year will mark the first closures of privately owned military shipyards and aircraft assembly plants since the end of the Cold War. This is a trend that will continue, says Gholz, and one that is indicative of a major shift in the American defense industry.

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