DoD: Cost of War Post-9/11 Exceeds $1.4 Trillion

The Department of Defense has spent more than $1.46 trillion for direct war-related costs since September 11, 2001, according to the latest Pentagon tabulation of war costs obtained by Secrecy News. The 74-page DoD report provides extensive and detailed reporting on war-related appropriations and expenditures. See Cost of War Update as of June 30, 2017. […]

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The Opioid Epidemic, & More from CRS

President Trump will declare the escalating number of drug deaths from opioids as a “public health emergency” — but not a “national emergency” — in an announcement scheduled for today. The Congressional Research Service has issued a new report on aspects of the problem, including an overview of opioid abuse, a review of opioid supply, […]

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White House Directive Spawns Confusion

Updated below Four months after President Trump issued his National Security Presidential Memorandum 5 on US policy towards Cuba and ordered it to be published in the Federal Register, that has still not been accomplished. The Memorandum, posted on the White House web site on June 16, states that “The Secretary of State is hereby […]

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Last JFK Assassination Records May Be Released Soon

The nominal deadline for release of the last remaining records concerning the assassination of President Kennedy under the terms of the JFK Assassination Records Collection Act of 1992 is October 26, 2017. Agencies have an opportunity to request postponement of release, beyond the deadline, of a few thousand records that are still being withheld, subject […]

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US Global Health Spending in Dispute, & More from CRS

The Trump Administration budget request proposes a substantial cut to US spending on global health programs, as described in a new report from the Congressional Research Service. But Congress appears poised to provide at least some of the funds that the executive branch had sought to eliminate. “The FY2018 budget request includes almost $7 billion […]

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Army Operations: The New Operational Environment

Other nations, including current and potential adversaries, possess military capabilities that now match or exceed those of the United States, according to a new US Army doctrinal publication. “Today’s operational environment presents threats to the Army and joint force that are significantly more dangerous in terms of capability and magnitude than those we faced in Iraq […]

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Enhanced Vetting of Foreign Nationals, & More from CRS

New and updated reports from the Congressional Research Service include the following. President Trump’s Proclamation on Enhanced Vetting of Foreign Nationals from Designated Countries, CRS Insight, September 29, 2017 Diversity, Inclusion, and Equal Opportunity in the Armed Services: Background and Issues for Congress, updated October 4, 2017 Navy Irregular Warfare and Counterterrorism Operations: Background and […]

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The Power to Exclude Aliens, & More from CRS

The U.S. Constitution does not mention immigration. But the Supreme Court has held that Congress has essentially complete (“plenary”) power to regulate immigration and that the executive branch has broad authority to enforce laws concerning alien entry to the US. In fact, as a new report from the Congressional Research Service explains, Congress can make […]

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