Top News: White House announces slew of new national security nominees Defense News Leaked Javad Zarif recording stirs hot political debate in Iran Aljazeera Tsirkon hypersonic missile tests to be completed this year Janes United States White House announces slew of new national security nominees Defense News4/24/21 The Biden administration continues to flesh out its national security team, with four new Pentagon nominees and a pair of top state nominees named Friday afternoon. OPINION: We don’t need a better nuclear arsenal to take on China SlateFred Kaplan 4/23/21 The military’s arguments for a nuclear overhaul are unconvincing. OPINION: Using defense funds to ‘reduce the role of nuclear weapons’ irresponsible Washington TimesPatty-Jane Geller 4/21/21 The administration is sending mixed signals on nuclear modernization. East Asia South Korea’s president said Trump ‘beat around the bush’ on North Korea’s nukes and his efforts ‘failed’ Business Insider4/23/21 South Korea’s president said Trump “failed” when it comes to North Korea and its nukes. OPINION: The U.S. needs China’s support to denuclearize North Korea The DiplomatChan young Bang 4/23/21 The shared strategic objective of the denuclearization of North Korea is a rare moment for two adversaries to align on a common endeavor to forge truly lasting peace. Middle East Leaked Javad Zarif recording stirs hot political debate in Iran Aljazeera4/26/21 Zarif’s comments on power struggles within the Iranian establishment have proven controversial. OPINION: There’s no easy way back to the Iran nuclear deal BloombergHussein Ibish 4/24/21 Technical and political complications stand in the way of Biden and Rouhani. OPINION: Why the past haunts talks with Iran New York TimesEditorial board 4/23/21 For nuclear talks in Vienna to succeed, Iranians and Americans need to be more honest about their past actions. Russia and Europe Tsirkon hypersonic missile tests to be completed this year Janes4/23/21 Russia will complete trials of its Tsirkon hypersonic cruise missile before the end of the year, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu told a 20 April Ministry of Defence board meeting. Putin vows a ‘quick and tough’ Russian response for its foes Fox News4/22/21 The warning during Putin’s annual state-of-the-nation address came amid a massive Russian military buildup near Ukraine.