National Security Brief: EU Awarded Nobel Peace Prize

— The European Union has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for six decades of work in advancing peace in Europe. The Nobel committee said the EU had helped to transform Europe “from a continent of war to a continent of peace.”

— Paul Ryan “set out Thursday to turn what the White House considers one of President Obama’s strongest assets into a liability, asserting that his administration’s foreign policy was “unraveling.” But from Libya and Iran to Afghanistan and Syria, Mr. Ryan offered proposals that differed from those of Mr. Obama in nuance rather than substance.”

— The New York Times reports: Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta warned Thursday that the United States was facing the possibility of a “cyber-Pearl Harbor” and was increasingly vulnerable to foreign computer hackers who could dismantle the nation’s power grid, transportation system, financial networks and government.

— USA Today reports: Afghan contractors responsible for preventing culverts from being used to hide roadside bombs on a major highway have falsely reported completing the work, putting American troops at risk.


— The United States has launched discussions with the four other recognized nuclear powers as well as other states on moving toward establishment of a potential international ban on the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons.