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Category Archives: Defense

CRS – Russia: Background and U.S. Interests

Russia: Background and U.S. Interests, March 1, 2017 (R44775) “Since 1991, Congress has played a key role in the development of U.S. policy toward the Russian Federation (Russia), the principal successor to the United States’ former superpower rival, the Soviet Union. In that time, U.S.-Russian relations have gone through positive and negative periods. Each new… Continue Reading

Economist Daily Chart visualizes Trump’s first budget

The Economist Daily Chart by the Data Team – Donald Trump’s ‘America First’ budget would make deep cuts to domestic programmes – Graphic detail “Stephen Bannon, President Donald Trump’s chief strategist, famously promised the “deconstruction of the administrative state”. On March 16th, the Trump administration took its first step toward achieving Mr Bannon’s vision by… Continue Reading

Physicist declassifies rescued nuclear test films

“The U.S. conducted 210 atmospheric nuclear tests between 1945 and 1962, with multiple cameras capturing each event at around 2,400 frames per second. But in the decades since, around 10,000 of these films sat idle, scattered across the country in high-security vaults. Not only were they gathering dust, the film material itself was slowly decomposing,… Continue Reading

6 countries named in revised Trump travel order accounted for more than 650,000 U.S. entries since 2006

Pew – “The six nations affected by a new executive order that prevents their citizens from obtaining new visas to enter the United States for 90 days accounted for 649,932 legal U.S. entries between fiscal years 2006 and 2015. This group includes visitors, students and diplomats as well as refugees and new lawful permanent residents,… Continue Reading

Presidential Executive Order on a Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing the Executive Branch

COMPREHENSIVE PLAN FOR REORGANIZING THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH, March 13, 2017 – “By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows: Section 1.  Purpose.  This order is intended to improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability of the executive branch… Continue Reading

WaPo – Trump budget goal to implement record slash of federal programs and boost military

Trump budget expected to seek historic contraction of federal workforce – “The president is expected to propose a budget this week that includes cuts in the federal government of a magnitude not seen since the end of World War II, a plan expected to prioritize military and homeland security spending while slashing budgets for a… Continue Reading

The Effect of Encryption on Lawful Access to Communications and Data

The Effect of Encryption on Lawful Access to Communications and Data. February 8, 2017 ISBN# 978-1-4422-7995-7 (pb); 978-1-4422-7996-4 (eBook) CSIS/Rowman & Littlefield “Many have drawn parallels between today’s debate over “Going Dark” and the “Crypto Wars” of the 1990s, but much has changed since then. First, the Internet has become central to global economic activity,… Continue Reading

WikiLeaks posts redacted files purported to be hacked from CIA

Washington Post – WikiLeaks posts files it says are from the CIA’s computer hacking arsenal – “The anti-secrecy organization said the trove exceeded in scale and significance the massive collection of National Security Agency documents exposed by former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden. A statement from WikiLeaks indicated that it planned to post nearly 9,000… Continue Reading

DHS document undermines Trump case for travel ban

MSNBC: “The Rachel Maddow Show has obtained, exclusively, a Department of Homeland Security intelligence assessment document. The document, from the Office of Intelligence and Analysis, makes the case that most foreign-born, U.S.-based violent extremists are likely not radicalized when they come to the U.S., but rather become radicalized after living in the U.S. for a… Continue Reading

Agility in US national security

McKinsey – Book Excerpt – March 2017  -“The shift continues from the manufacturing economy of the industrial age to the digital economy of the information age, US national-security organizations need to transform as well. American military forces have been, and continue to be, the most capable in the world, but the national-security infrastructure, refined and… Continue Reading

Welcome to Code.mil – an experiment in open source at the Department of Defense

“The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) faces unique challenges in open sourcing its code. Unlike most software projects, code written by U.S. Federal government employees typically doesn’t have copyright protections under U.S. and some international laws. This can make it hard to attach an open source license to our code, and our team here at… Continue Reading