Was Obama Administration the Most Transparent or the Least?

“After early promises to be the most transparent administration in history, the Obama administration turned out to be one of the most secretive,” wrote Washington Post media columnist Margaret Sullivan last year. Speaking at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center last month, former ACLU litigator Jameel Jaffer didn’t go quite that far. He acknowledged that Obama had taken […]

Read More

Turning a Blind Eye Towards Armageddon — U.S. Leaders Reject Nuclear Winter Studies

Now 10 years ago, several of the world’s leading climatologists and physicists chose to reinvestigate the long-term environmental impacts of nuclear war. The peer-reviewed studies they produced are considered to be the most authoritative type of scientific research, which is subjected to criticism by the international scientific community before final publication in scholarly journals. No […]

Read More

New B-21 Bomber or B-2 Mod 1?

By Hans M. Kristensen The US Air Force has published the first official image of the next-generation bomber, formerly known as LRS-B (Long Range Strike Bomber). Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James revealed the image during her talk to the 2016 Air Warfare Symposium and gave it its official designation: B-21. The “21” refers to the […]

Read More

FAS Roundup: November 3, 2015

Scientist Spotlight This new installment features prominent FAS-affiliated scientists and engineers. Dr. Bethany Goldblum is a member of the research faculty at UC Berkeley’s Department of Nuclear Engineering  and is currently focusing her studies on nuclear security science. Read the full Q&A with her here. From the Blogs Army Doctrine on Protection of Civilians: For moral, legal, […]

Read More

ODNI Issues Transparency Implementation Plan

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence yesterday released a transparency implementation plan that establishes guidelines for increasing public disclosure of information by and about U.S. intelligence agencies. Based on a set of principles on transparency that were published earlier this year, the plan prioritizes the objectives of transparency and and describes potential initiatives […]

Read More

Upgrades At US Nuclear Bases In Europe Acknowledge Security Risk

By Hans M. Kristensen Security upgrades underway at U.S. Air Force bases in Europe indicate that nuclear weapons deployed in Europe have been stored under unsafe conditions for more than two decades. Commercial satellite images show work underway at Incirlik Air Base in Turkey and Aviano Air Base in Italy. The upgrades are intended to […]

Read More

Crowd-Sourcing the Treaty Verification Problem

Verification of international treaties and arms control agreements such as the pending Iran nuclear deal has traditionally relied upon formal inspections backed by clandestine intelligence collection. But today, the widespread availability of sensors of many types complemented by social media creates the possibility of crowd-sourcing the verification task using open source data. “Never before has […]

Read More

Growing Data Collection Inspires Openness at NGA

A flood of information from the ongoing proliferation of space-based sensors and ground-based data collection devices is promoting a new era of transparency in at least one corner of the U.S. intelligence community. The “explosion” of geospatial information “makes geospatial intelligence increasingly transparent because of the huge number and diversity of commercial and open sources […]

Read More