FAS Roundup- February 20, 2012

FAS Roundup: February 20, 2012


Pentagon discloses military intelligence budget request, potential cuts in U.S. nuclear forces by Obama administration, question of reporter privilege and much more. 

From the Blogs

  • Pentagon Basic Research Said to Need “More Transparency”: The Department of Defense basic research program has many strengths as well as some serious weaknesses, according to a new report from the Defense Science Board (DSB) obtained by Secrecy News. But, DoD needs to open up and to improve its information management practices.
  • Nuclear Studies and Republican Disarmers: A recent report that the Obama administration is considering deep cuts in U.S. nuclear forces has Congressional Republicans up in arms. Right-wing institutions have criticized the administration for preparing reckless unilateral cuts that jeopardize U.S. security. Hans Kristensen writes that as it turns out, Republican presidents have been the biggest nuclear reducers in the post-Cold War era.
  • Reporter’s Privilege at Issue in Sterling Leak Case: The question of whether a reporter is entitled to protect confidential sources has emerged as a central issue in the pending pre-trial appeal in prosecution of Jeffrey Sterling, the former CIA officer who is accused of leaking classified information to New York Times reporter James Risen.

Nuclear Studies and Republican Disarmers

Despite an outcry from congressional republicans and conservatives against the Obama administration’s plans to reduce nuclear weapons, Republican presidents have been the big disarmers in the post-Cold War era.                                        Click graph for larger version

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By Hans M. Kristensen

A recent report by the Associated Press that the administration is considering deep cuts in U.S. nuclear forces has Congressional Republicans and frequent critics of nuclear reductions up in arms.

The AP report quoted “a former government official and a congressional staffer” saying the administration is studying options for the next round of arms control talk with Russia that envision reducing the number of deployed strategic warheads to 1,000-1,100, 700-800, and 300-400.

Congressional Republicans and right-wing institutions have criticized the administration for preparing reckless unilateral cuts that jeopardize U.S. security.

As it turns out, Republican presidents have been the biggest nuclear reducers in the post-Cold War era. Republican presidents seem to have a thing for 50 percent nuclear reductions. Continue reading