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Category Archives: Defense

Supreme Court overturns OSHA mandate, affects 2/3 of all US workers

Poynter – Al Tompkins: “The quick version of the story is this: A majority of Supreme Court justices ruled that if Congress wishes for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to be able to require private-sector workers to be vaccinated or undergo testing, then Congress should say so in legislation. Short of that, the court said, OSHA has the authority to regulate workplace safety but not public health, and a vaccine/testing requirement is an issue of public health. The court did leave the door open for OSHA to regulate workplaces where COVID-19 represents a direct threat, such as places where people work close to others or where they work around vulnerable individuals. So who is still covered by federal vaccine mandates? CNET’s list includes:

  • Federal workers and employees of contractors that do business with the federal government will be required to be vaccinated
  • The Department of Health and Human Services will require vaccinations in Head Start programs, as well as schools run by the Department of Defense and the Bureau of Indian Education.
  • Workers in health care facilities that receive Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements, including hospitals and home health agencies, will also have to be fully vaccinated.
  • Individuals applying to become lawful permanent US residents must be fully vaccinated, according to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services.
  • All 1.3 million active-duty service members

Go here if you want to read my deeper dive on this topic. I share excerpts of what the court decided in its ruling on the lawsuit — which was filed by businesses and officials from 27 states — and why dissenting justices so passionately opposed the ruling. I also explain why the court’s ruling does not overturn local and state mandates and that employers are still free to require vaccinations — with some limitations. (Ballotpedia points out, “20 states, all with Republican governors, prohibit proof-of-vaccination requirements. In eleven states, governors banned proof-of-vaccination requirements through executive orders. In nine states, legislators passed laws banning proof-of-vaccination requirements.”)…”

An Abrupt Climate Change Scenario and Its Implications for United States National Security

An Abrupt Climate Change Scenario and Its Implications for United States National Security – October 2003. By Peter Schwartz and Doug Randall. Report prepared for U.S. Dept. of Defense. Released to the public in early February 2004. See also The Pentagon’s Weather Nightmare. The climate could change radically, and fast. That would be the mother… Continue Reading

Bruce Mehlman’s Top 2022 Risks Deck

Bruce Mehlman of Mehlman Castagnetti – his 29 slide deck is titled Living in Limbo – Anticipating the Top 2022 Risks in Politics & Policy “Uncertainty, volatility & disruption are the new normal. 2022 will neither be the best of times nor worst of times. COVID won’t magically go away nor kill us all. The… Continue Reading

DoD IG Report – A Review of DoD’s Response to Jan 6 2021 Insurrection

Review of the Department of Defense’s Role, Responsibilities, and Actions to Prepare for and Respond to the Protest and Its Aftermath at the U.S. Capital Campus on January 2021 [Redacted]. November 16, 2021: “…To conduct the review, we assembled a multidisciplinary team of DoD OIG administrative and criminal investigators, evaluators, auditors, and attorneys. We examined… Continue Reading

Surveillance Technology at the Fair: Proliferation of Cyber Capabilities in International Arms Markets

The Atlantic Council: “State cyber capabilities are increasingly abiding by the “pay-to-play” model—both US/NATO allies and adversaries can purchase interception and intrusion technologies from private firms for intelligence and surveillance purposes. NSO Group has repeatedly made headlines in 2021 for targeting government entities in cyberspace, but there are many more companies selling similar products that are just… Continue Reading

Department of Defense Climate Risk Analysis October 2021

“Climate change is reshaping the geostrategic, operational, and tactical environments with significant implications for U.S. national security and defense. Increasing temperatures; changing precipitation patterns; and more frequent, intense, and unpredictable extreme weather conditions caused by climate change are exacerbating existing risks and creating new security challenges for U.S. interests. The risks of climate change to… Continue Reading

Director of National Intelligence Inaugural Estimate on Climate Change

National Intelligence Estimate – Climate Change and International Responses Increasing Challenges to US National Security Through 2040. October 21, 2021. “We assess that climate change will increasingly exacerbate risks to US national security interests as the physical impacts increase and geopolitical tensions mount about how to respond to the challenge. Global momentum is growing for more… Continue Reading

The Right to be Forgotten’ and its Unintended Consequences to Intelligence Gathering

Goldfield, Charlene, ‘The Right to be Forgotten’ and its Unintended Consequences to Intelligence Gathering (July 1, 2020). Volume 32, Issue 2, Winter 2020 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3898887 “Social media has dramatically changed how we interact and communicate with one another. The reliance on social media has also sparked many international debates revolving around privacy.… Continue Reading

NSA, CISA publish guide for securing VPN servers

The Record: “The National Security Agency (NSA) and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) have published today technical guidance on properly securing VPN servers used by organizations to allow employees remote access to internal networks. The NSA said it put together the nine-page guide [PDF] after “multiple nation-state advanced persistent threat (APT) actors” weaponized… Continue Reading