FAS Roundup: May 18, 2015

From the Blogs House Renews Ban on CRS Publication of Its Reports: The Congressional Research Service (CRS) will continue to be barred from releasing its reports to the public, the House Appropriations Committee said in its report on legislative branch appropriations for the coming year. Because Congress prohibits CRS from publishing its own reports, most CRS reports are only available to the public from non-governmental organizations that take the initiative to gather and publish them. Many […]

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FAS Roundup: May 11, 2015

How South Korea Could Acquire and Deploy Nuclear Weapons With security concerns in Northeast Asia regarding North Korea’s build up of its nuclear weapons arsenal, there is a possibility that states in the region, including South Korea and Japan, would consider and start to develop nuclear weapons. In a new paper published by the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center, FAS President Dr. Charles Ferguson examines the rationale for South Korea to acquire these weapons, and presents […]

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FAS Roundup: May 4, 2015

From the Blogs CIA Reviews “Operational Files” Exemptions from FOIA: The CIA Information Act of 1984 authorizes the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency to designate certain Agency records as “operational files.” Doing so makes them exempt not only from disclosure, but even from search and review under the Freedom of Information Act. The 1984 Act also requires the Agency to perform a “decennial review” at least every ten years in order to determine whether any […]

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FAS Roundup: April 27, 2015

Russia Nuclear Forces, 2015 Currently, Russia is modernizing its strategic and nonstrategic warheads; it currently has 4,500 nuclear warheads and 1,780 are deployed on missiles and bomber bases. Additionally, there are 700 strategic warheads and 2,000 nonstrategic warheads in storage, and an estimated 3,200 retired but largely intact warheads awaiting dismantlement. In the latest Nuclear Notebook, Hans Kristensen and Robert Norris examine Russia’s nuclear arsenal and strategy. Despite Russian nuclear threats, they are not building […]

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FAS Roundup: April 20, 2015

From the Blogs No Fly List: Govt Offers New Redress Procedures: The government will no longer refuse to confirm or deny that persons who are prevented from boarding commercial aircraft have been placed on the “No Fly List,” and such persons will have new opportunities to challenge the denial of boarding, the Department of Justice announced in a court filing. Until now, the Government refused to acknowledge whether or not an individual traveler had been placed on the […]

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FAS Roundup: April 13, 2015

From the Blogs Intelligence Oversight in the 113th Congress: A new report from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence describes oversight activities in the 113th Congress from January 2013 to January 2015. Highlights of the report include: over-control of classified information continues to hamper information sharing- even in the intelligence community, efforts to enlist the resources of the Government Accountability Office to strengthen intel oversight are continuing and details on the three-volume, still-classified CIA torture […]

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FAS Roundup: April 6, 2015

From the Blogs New START Treaty Count: Russia Dips Below U.S. Again: According to the latest data released by the State Department, Russian deployed strategic warheads counted by the New START Treaty once again slipped below the U.S. force level. Russia deployed 1,582 warheads on 515 strategic launchers and the United States deployed 1,597 warheads on 785 launchers. Russia and the United States are slowly – very slowly – reducing their deployed forces to meet the […]

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FAS Roundup: March 30, 2015

From the Blogs H-Bomb History Published Over Government Objections: Physicist Kenneth W. Ford, who participated in the design of the hydrogen bomb in the early 1950s, has published a memoir of his experiences despite the objections of Energy Department reviewers who requested substantial redactions in the text. “Building the H Bomb: A Personal History” was released this month, and provides an eyewitness account of several crucial episodes in the development of the hydrogen bomb. Growing Data Collection Inspires Openness […]

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FAS Roundup: March 16, 2015

From the Blogs Data and Goliath: Confronting the Surveillance Society: We have all become immersed in a sea of electronic data collection. Before we have had a chance to collectively think about what this phenomenal growth in data production and collection means, it threatens to become an irreversible feature of our lives. The new book Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Capture Your Data and Control Your World by security technologist Bruce Schneier, explores the various […]

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FAS Roundup: March 9, 2015

US Nuclear Forces, 2015 Over the next decade, the United States plans to spend as much as $350 billion on nuclear force modernization and maintenance. In the latest Nuclear Notebook, FAS’ Hans M. Kristensen and Robert S. Norris estimate that the United States maintains about 4,760 nuclear warheads. Of this total, 2,080 warheads are deployed while 2,680 are in storage for potential upload onto missiles and aircraft. Additionally, there are 2,340 retired (but still intact) […]

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