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Category Archives: Defense

Trump team failed to follow NSC’s pandemic playbook

Politico – “The 69-page document / PDF [and embedded in this article], finished in 2016, provided a step by step list of priorities – which were then ignored by the administration. “The strategies are among hundreds of tactics and key policy decisions laid out in a 69-page National Security Council playbook on fighting pandemics, which… Continue Reading

Surprising sources of light pollution in states around the US

Mysterious Light Sources Alex Altair: “I got my first telescope in 2017, in time for the Great American Eclipse. I started paying attention to the concept of light pollution, including finding detailed maps of what places had high or low amounts of light pollution. After looking up nearby areas that were potentially good for stargazing,… Continue Reading

New Online Resource: War Powers and Presidential Practice

Just Security – “Today we are excited to announce the release of the War Powers Resolution Reporting Project, a product of the Reiss Center on Law and Security at NYU School of Law. (Bridgeman is the project’s lead author and researcher; Goldbrenner is the executive director of the Reiss Center.) Intended for use by policymakers,… Continue Reading

Oversight Subcommittee Seeks Information About Ring’s Agreements with Police, Local Governments

Washington, D.C. (Feb. 19, 2020)—”Today, Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy, sent a letter to Amazon seeking information about its subsidiary Ring Inc.’s partnerships with city governments and local police departments, along with the company’s policies governing the data it collects. Ring sells internet-connected home surveillance equipment, such… Continue Reading

Information Hunters: When Librarians, Soldiers, and Spies Banded Together in WW II Europe

National Archives presentation available via YouTube and C-SPAN – Information Hunters: When Librarians, Soldiers, and Spies Banded Together in World War II Europe, Thursday, January 23, 2020. “While armies have seized enemy records and rare texts as booty throughout history, it was only during World War II that an unlikely band of librarians, archivists, and… Continue Reading

Senate Intel Releases Bipartisan Report on Obama Admin Response to Russian Election Interference

“Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr (R-NC) and Vice Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) today released the third volume in the Committee’s bipartisan investigation into Russian election interference, “U.S. Government Response to Russian Activities.” The report examines the Obama Administration’s reaction to initial reports of election interference and the steps officials took or did… Continue Reading

Artificial intelligence, geopolitics, and information integrity

Brookings – The Global Race for Technological Security – Discover the Security Implications: “The report [142 pages PDF] explores the intersection of AI and information integrity in the specific context of geopolitics. Before addressing that topic further, it is important to underscore that the geopolitical implications of AI go far beyond information. AI will reshape… Continue Reading

GAO – Trump administration violated the law by withholding Ukraine aid

GAO – Office of Management and Budget—Withholding of Ukraine Security Assistance. B-331564: Jan 16, 2020. In the summer of 2019, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) withheld from obligation funds appropriated to the Department of Defense (DOD) for security assistance to Ukraine. In order to withhold the funds, OMB issued a series of nine… Continue Reading

NSA Takes Step Toward Protecting World’s Computers, Not Just Hacking Them

The New York Times: “The National Security Agency has taken a significant step toward protecting the world’s computer systems, announcing Tuesday that it alerted Microsoft to a vulnerability in its Windows operating system rather than following the agency’s typical approach of keeping quiet and exploiting the flaw to develop cyberweapons. The warning allowed Microsoft to… Continue Reading

US Budgetary Costs and Obligations of Post-9/11 Wars through FY2020: $6.4 Trillion

Watson Institute, Neta C. Crawford – November 13, 2019: “Summary – Since late 2001, the United States has appropriated and is obligated to spend an estimated $6.4 Trillion through Fiscal Year 2020 in budgetary costs related to and caused by the post-9/11 wars—an estimated $5.4 Trillion in appropriations in current dollars and an additional minimum… Continue Reading

Pete Recommends – Weekly highlights on cyber security issues January 12, 2020

Via LLRX – Pete Recommends – Weekly highlights on cyber security issues January 12, 2020 – Privacy and security issues impact every aspect of our lives – home, work, travel, education, health and medical records – to name but a few. On a weekly basis Pete Weiss, highlights articles and information that focus on the increasingly… Continue Reading

U.S. Killing of Qasem Soleimani: Frequently Asked Questions

EveryCRSReport.com: U.S. Killing of Qasem Soleimani: Frequently Asked Questions. January 8, 2020. “The January 2, 2020, U.S. killing in Iraq of Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) Commander Qasem Soleimani, generally regarded as one of the most powerful and important officials in Iran, has potentially dramatic implications for the United States. For Congress, it raises… Continue Reading