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Tag Archive | "Congressional Research Service"

Ballistic Missile Defense in the Asia-Pacific Region: Cooperation and Opposition – CRS

The growing number and modernization of ballistic missiles in the Asia-Pacific region poses a security challenge for the United States and its allies and is thus a concern for many in Congress. The United States has made ballistic missile defense (BMD) a central component of protection for forward-deployed U.S. forces and extended deterrence for allied security. The configuration of sensors, command-and-control centers, and BMD assets in the region has slowly evolved with contributions from treaty allies, primarily Japan, Australia, and South Korea.

Observers believe that North Korea has an arsenal of hundreds of short-range ballistic missiles and likely dozens of medium-range Nodong missiles; the extended-range Nodongs are considered capable of reaching Japan and U.S. bases there. Longer-range North Korean missiles appear to be under development but remain unreliable, with only one successful test out of five in the past 15 years. The U.S. intelligence community has not yet concluded that North Korea can build nuclear warheads small enough to put on ballistic missiles, but there is significant debate among experts on this question.

Full Report: Ballistic Missile Defense in the Asia-Pacific Region: Cooperation and Opposition (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

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CRS — Cyberwarfare and Cyberterrorism: In Brief (March 27, 2015)

Cyberwarfare and Cyberterrorism: In Brief (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

Recent incidents have highlighted the lack of consensus internationally on what defines a cyberattack, an act of war in cyberspace, or cyberterrorism. Cyberwar is typically conceptualized as state-on-state action equivalent to an armed attack or use of force in cyberspace that may trigger a military response with a proportional kinetic use of force. Cyberterrorism can be considered “the premeditated use of disruptive activities, or the threat thereof, against computers and/or networks, with the intention to cause harm or further social, ideological, religious, political or similar objectives, or to intimidate any person in furtherance of such objectives.” Cybercrime includes unauthorized network breaches and theft of intellectual property and other data; it can be financially motivated, and response is typically the jurisdiction of law enforcement agencies. Within each of these categories, different motivations as well as overlapping intent and methods of various actors can complicate response options.

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CRS Insights: Increased Department of Defense Role in U.S. Ebola Response, CRS Insights (October 1, 2014)

CRS Insights: Increased Department of Defense Role in U.S. Ebola Response, CRS Insights (October 1, 2014)

Increased Department of Defense Role in U.S. Ebola Response, CRS Insights (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

On September 16, 2014, President Obama announced a major increase in the U.S. response to the current Ebola outbreak in West Africa. The Department of Defense (DOD) submitted requests to Congress to make excess Overseas Contingency Operations funds appropriated for FY2014 available to support this effort. The requested funds would be used to provide humanitarian assistance, including:

  • transportation of DOD and non-DOD personnel and supplies;
  • coordination of delivery of supplies from both DOD and non-DOD sources such as isolation units,
  • personnel protective equipment, and medical supplies;
  • construction of 17 planned Ebola treatment units;
  • and, training and education in support of sanitation and mortuary affairs functions to limit the spread of the Ebola outbreak.

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CRS — The Military Commissions Act of 2009 (MCA 2009): Overview and Legal Issues

The Military Commissions Act of 2009 (MCA 2009): Overview and Legal Issues (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

On November 13, 2001, President Bush issued a Military Order (M.O.) pertaining to the detention, treatment, and trial of certain non-citizens in the war against terrorism. Military commissions pursuant to the M.O. began in November 2004 against four persons declared eligible for trial, but the Supreme Court in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld invalidated the military commissions as improper under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). To permit military commissions to go forward, Congress approved the Military Commissions Act of 2006 (MCA), conferring authority to promulgate rules that depart from the strictures of the UCMJ and possibly U.S. international obligations. Military commissions proceedings were reinstated and resulted in three convictions under the Bush Administration.

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More Full Text Reports from CRS, Lexis-Nexis, and other sources

CRS — Terrorism Risk Insurance: Issue Analysis and Overview of Current Program

Posted: 10 Mar 2014 08:30 AM PDT

Terrorism Risk Insurance: Issue Analysis and Overview of Current Program (PDF) Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists) Prior to the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, insurance coverage for losses from such attacks was normally included in general insurance policies without specific cost to the policyholders. Following the attacks, such coverage became very […]

 

 

CRS — Army Drawdown and Restructuring: Background and Issues for Congress

Posted: 10 Mar 2014 08:00 AM PDT

Army Drawdown and Restructuring: Background and Issues for Congress (PDF) Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists) On January 26, 2012, senior DOD leadership unveiled a new defense strategy based on a review of potential future security challenges, current defense strategy, and budgetary constraints. This new strategy envisions a smaller, leaner Army that […]

 

 

CRS — Israel: Background and U.S. Relations (updated)

Posted: 10 Mar 2014 07:30 AM PDT

Israel: Background and U.S. Relations (PDF) Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists) Since Israel’s founding in 1948, successive U.S. Presidents and many Members of Congress have demonstrated a commitment to Israel’s security and to maintaining close U.S.-Israel defense, diplomatic, and economic cooperation. U.S. and Israeli leaders have developed close relations based on […]

 

 

CRS — Venezuela: Background and U.S. Relations

Posted: 10 Mar 2014 07:00 AM PDT

Venezuela: Background and U.S. Relations Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists) While historically the United States has had close relations with Venezuela, a major oil supplier, friction in bilateral relations rose over the past decade under the leftist populist government of President Hugo Chávez, who died in March 2013 after battling cancer […]

 

 

CRS — Direct Overt U.S. Aid Appropriations for and Military Reimbursements to Pakistan, FY2002-FY2015

Posted: 10 Mar 2014 06:30 AM PDT

Direct Overt U.S. Aid Appropriations for and Military Reimbursements to Pakistan, FY2002-FY2015 (PDF) Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists) ChartFiled under: business and economics, Congressional Research Service, international relations, military and defense, Pakistan

 

 

2013 Military Parent Custody and Visitation Legislation

Posted: 10 Mar 2014 06:00 AM PDT

2013 Military Parent Custody and Visitation Legislation Source: National Conference of State Legislatures Over the last decade, legislation addressing issues facing military parents has become a national trend. With the number of custody and visitation issues among military families growing, the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws drafted the Uniform Deployed Parents Custody […]

 

 

CRS — China Naval Modernization: Implications for U.S. Navy Capabilities — Background and Issues for Congress

Posted: 10 Mar 2014 05:30 AM PDT

China Naval Modernization: Implications for U.S. Navy Capabilities — Background and Issues for Congress (PDF) Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists) China is building a modern and regionally powerful Navy with a modest but growing capability for conducting operations beyond China’s near-seas region. The question of how the United States should respond […]

 

 

LexisNexis — 2013 Best Practices for Government Libraries

Posted: 10 Mar 2014 05:00 AM PDT

2013 Best Practices for Government Libraries Source: LexisNexis From blog post: The 2013 Best Practices for Government Libraries: Managing Evolving Resources: Strategies, Capabilities, and Alternatives is now available in PDF. 2012 and prior years of Best Practices for Government Libraries are all available from the right sidebar here on the Government Info Pro. The e-book […]

 

 

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The 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) and Defense Strategy: Issues for Congress

The 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) and Defense Strategy: Issues for Congress (PDF) Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

By statute, the Department of Defense (DOD) is required, by Section 118, Title 10, U.S. Code, to submit to Congress a report based on its most recent Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) process, no later than the President submits his budget request for Fiscal Year 2015. The “2014 QDR” review process took place against the backdrop of key changes in the global strategic context, recent evolutions in U.S. strategic priorities, and a tighter fiscal context. The 2014 process also drew on a series of recent reviews and guidance documents—a 2011 DOD “comprehensive review” initially launched by Secretary of Defense Gates and continued by Secretary of Defense Panetta; the January 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance document (DSG), and the 2013 review process known as the Strategic Choices and Management Review (SCMR).

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