The Diplomacy Cable 3/28/2016

With the invention of the telegraph cables in the 19th century, international consulates and embassies began sending shorter encrypted telegrams, using Morse Code. While the messages are now sent electronically, the moniker “cable” stuck and the term is still in use today for shorter, encrypted diplomatic messages.

Turkish President claims 5,300 Kurdish militants killed since July

Turkish security forces have killed 5,359 Kurdish militants since the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) broke a negotiated ceasefire, the state-run news agency reports. Mr Erdogan said 355 soldiers, police officers and village guards have been killed in the violence, most of it in Turkey’s largely Kurdish southeast, according to the Irish Times.  The two year ceasefire between the Kurdish militant group and the Turkish state was abandoned by the PKK in July.

4 Americans dead in Brussels

The U.S. State Department has confirmed, now, 4 American fatalities in the ISIS attacks on Brussels. A State Department official told NBC News that, “we express our deepest condolences to their loved ones.” There has been a confirmed death toll of 31 and over 90 wounded. There were Belgians, Americans, Dutch, Swedes, Germans, French, Italians, Chinese and Brits among the dead.

U.S. has military firebase in Iraq

For the second time in three days, the first U.S. military firebase in Iraq has come under small arms fire from ISIS. The base, known as Firebase Bell, was attacked by ten ISIS militants, with the U.S. Marines killing 2 while the rest “ran away in fear,” Col. Steve Warren, the coalition spokesman said.

The U.S. has lost soldiers as well. Staff Sgt. Louis F. Cardin of the 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit was killed last week in a rocket attack. CNN has this story with more information on combat forces in Iraq.

It is easy to forget with everything happening in America currently, that we still have soldiers, airmen, marines, and sailors in combat theatre.

The West hasn’t been on the only part of the world to have terror attacks

69 people have been killed and scores injured in an explosion at a public park in the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore according to officials, writes BBC. The park that was attacked was mostly filled with women and children celebrating Easter. Pakistan’s president has condemned the blast and the regional government has announced three days of mourning. The suicide attack was carried out by a branch of the Pakistani Taliban.

Palmyra

The Syrian Army is pressing the advance after recapturing Palmyra

Assad’s forces lost Palmyra after a week-long siege by ISIS last summer, but recently recaptured the city that is filled with some of the world’s greatest antiquities. “Eighty percent of the ruins are in good shape,” Maamoun Abdelkarim, Syria’s antiquities chief, told the Agence France-Presse. The Kremlin described the Russian- backed operation to recapture the historic city as a “symbolic and important victory” and said Moscow had restored the potential of the Syrian army. The Guardian has this story.

Diplomacy Fast Facts:

Anybody know the first American to be granted the title of “Ambassador”?

The rank of Ambassador was first used by the United States in 1893. Thomas F. Bayard was appointed Ambassador to Great Britain on March 30, 1893. James B. Eustis was appointed Ambassador to France on April 18, 1893. Prior to this date, the highest-ranking U.S. diplomats were Ministers.

If you have idea or questions that you would like discussed in our new Diplomacy Fast Facts section, please send them to Dylan Ashdown at his Twitter handle @AshdownDylan.

Dylan Ashdown is a second year graduate student at Seton Hall, where he is a part of the School of Diplomacy and International Relations and College of Communication and the Arts. He is pursuing dual master’s degrees in Diplomacy and International Relations and Strategic Communications. He received his undergraduate degrees from the University of Central Missouri.

Follow Dylan Ashdown on Twitter at @AshdownDylan and send any requests for stories there

Follow the Journal of Diplomacy on Twitter at @JournalofDiplo

Photograph: TASS/Barcroft Media

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