Recent Activity from

Judge Garland’s Jurisprudence, and More from CRS

A new report from the Congressional Research Service examines Judge Merrick Garland’s approach to various domains of the law in an attempt to assess what the impact would be if his nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court were ever confirmed by the U.S. Senate. “The report focuses on those areas of law where Justice Scalia […]

Read More

FAS Roundup: May 3, 2016

FAS Special Event: “30 Years After the Accident: the Meaning of Chernobyl Today?” Leading experts came together to discuss Chernobyl on the eve of its 30th anniversary, the lessons learned, and possible implications that this fateful event has for the nuclear industry today. Speaker presentations are available on fas.org and stay tuned for a full recording of the […]

Read More

FAS Roundup: April 26, 2016

FAS Attends GEO Review Panel Chris Bidwell, Senior fellow for Law and Policy, was invited to participate in a recent GAO review panel on Gaps in DHS and FBI Biological Attribution Capabilities. The review took place over a two day period at GAO headquarters in Washington DC. GAO will eventually publish its findings in an […]

Read More

ODNI Revises Costly Declassification Rule

As promised, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) last week formally withdrew a new rule on requesting declassification of classified ODNI records after receiving public complaints that it would have imposed onerous costs on requesters. A revised rule was then issued. “ODNI received comments regarding the fee provisions [with] the recommendation that […]

Read More

Defense Reform: Yes, But How? (and more from CRS)

There is widespread dissatisfaction with the organization and performance of the Department of Defense, a new Congressional Research Service report says, but no consensus on what to do about it. Driving the current debate, CRS says, are questions such as: *     “Why, after the expenditure of nearly $1.6 trillion and over 15 years at war […]

Read More

DoD Directs “Equal Attention” to Secrecy, Declassification

Declassification of national security information should be pursued on a par with classification, according to a Department of Defense directive that was reissued yesterday. “Declassification of information will receive equal attention as the classification of information so that information remains classified only as long as required by national security considerations,” said DoD Instruction 5200.01, dated […]

Read More

Border Security Doesn’t Yield Consistent Results (CRS)

Border security to prevent unauthorized migration along the U.S-Mexico border is a dynamic and challenging problem that has not consistently been mitigated by allocating increased resources, such as fencing and surveillance, says a newly updated report from the Congressional Research Service. “Robust investments at the border were not associated with reduced unauthorized inflows during the […]

Read More

Air Force Updates Doctrine on Cyberspace Operations

Within living memory, even a passing mention of cyber weapons or U.S. offensive activities in cyberspace was deemed sufficient to justify national security classification. Now, although the Obama Administration generally neither claims nor receives credit for it, military cyberspace doctrine has become one of a number of significant policy areas in which this Administration is […]

Read More

Cross-Cutting Intelligence Issues, and More from CRS

A new report from the Congressional Research Service raises the possibility that polygraph testing of intelligence employees could be phased out in favor of “continuous evaluation” (CE), i.e. the automated monitoring of financial, criminal and other databases. The notion was suggested in a CRS overview of selected intelligence policy issues, including budget management, the quality […]

Read More

FAS Roundup: April 19, 2016

From the Blogs Counting Casualties in Syria & Iraq, and More from CRS: The number of people killed in Syria since March 2011 is variously estimated to be between 250,000 and 470,000. The number of estimated casualties in Iraq ranges from 19,000 to 41,650 deaths since January 2014. A new report from the Congressional Research Service somewhat clinically discusses […]

Read More