Energy and climate: Moving beyond symbolism (David Victor, Brookings)

Energy touches virtually every aspect of public policy. Dramatic revolutions in U.S. shale oil and gas supply over the last decade and their massive economic benefit have shown that energy production is a major contributor to job creation, investment, and economic growth. The electric power grid, which supplies nearly half of all the energy ultimately used in the country, is a prime target for terrorist attack; thus, policies surrounding the grid are a central element of homeland security strategy, since reliable electric power is essential to water supply, sewage treatment, traffic control, computer servers, national security infrastructure, and so much else in modern society. Energy is also central to foreign policy. Large revenues—especially from oil sales—often flow to overseas energy producers who can enrich malicious governments and non-state actors, giving them capabilities to harm U.S. interests. One of today’s greatest policy challenges—the threats of unchecked global warming—is an intrinsically foreign problem, as the buildup of greenhouse gases in the global atmosphere has arisen from how the whole planet has used and depended upon carbon-based fossil fuels.

Countering violent extremism in America: Policy recommendations for the next president (Robert L. McKenzie, Brookings)

Since 9/11, the U.S. government has spent well over $100 billion and mobilized thousands of employees to thwart jihadi terrorist plots in America and abroad.[1] Measured by American lives saved, the U.S. government has had extraordinary success using all elements of its national security toolbox to capture, arrest, and kill terrorists worldwide. Yet it is clear that kinetic operations alone will not solve the problem. The rise of the Islamic State has energized an estimated 27,000 jihadi foreign fighters from around the world to travel to Iraq and Syria, and recent attacks in Paris, Brussels, San Bernardino, Orlando, and Nice have demonstrated the organization’s reach and ability to both inspire and guide homegrown violent extremists across the globe.

WATCH: The power of the educated white female vote in election 2016 (William H. Frey, Brookings)

As we move closer to Election Day, it is becoming clear that college-educated white women will be a key voting bloc for Hillary Clinton, serving as a counterweight to Donald Trump’s support from working-class white men. This is evident in polls taken since mid-summer and could translate into a sizeable vote advantage for Clinton, according to simulations I conducted and depicted in our latest video of the Diversity Explosion: Election 2016 series.

Has a presidential election ever been as negative as this one? (Elaine Kamarck, Brookings)

Many Americans think the bloodbath between Trump and Clinton is unprecedented in American history, but the reality is that short term memories and a sugarcoating of our nation’s presidential history mask some contentious races for the White House.

Truly winning the battle of Mosul (Daniel L. Byman, Brookings)

True victory in the battle of Mosul, the Islamic State’s capital in Iraq and the largest city it controls, will be difficult. It may take months or only a few short weeks, but I expect the Iraqi military, Kurdish Peshmerga, and other various militias—along with the U.S. forces that support them—to defeat the Islamic State defenders and liberate one of Iraq’s largest cities from their brutal rule. Far harder will be the political struggle. Iraqi forces need to maintain their unity as they go forward and a broader political settlement must be forged. Here the prognosis looks poor.

Learning to live with a nuclear North Korea (Andrei Lankov, East Asia Forum)

North Korea has done it again. On 9 October they conducted yet another nuclear test, so far the most powerful and arguably the most successful. To make matters worse, there are good reasons to expect that another test is in the making.

Trump, Clinton Supporters Differ on How Media Should Cover Controversial Statements (Pew Research Center)

Trump supporters split on whether news media should highlight offensive statements, but nearly three-in-four Clinton supporters favor it