Issues

Issues

Congressional Oversight in Theory and in Practice

The rudiments of Congressional oversight — its legal basis, its functions, and the diverse forms it takes — are concisely described in a newly updated report from the Congressional Research Service. “Congressional oversight refers to the review, monitoring, and supervision of federal agencies, programs, activities, and policy implementation…. Congress’s oversight… Read More

NSA: Redacting With Confidence

The National Security Agency has issued new guidance to assist officials in redacting (censoring) documents in Microsoft Word format and producing unclassified Adobe Portable Document (PDF) files without inadvertently disclosing sensitive information. “MS Word is used throughout the DoD and the Intelligence Community (IC) for preparing documents, reports, notes,… Read More

The Legal Significance of Presidential Signing Statements

When he signed the 2006 Defense Appropriations Act, which included a prohibition against torture of detainees in U.S. custody, President Bush issued a signing statement implying that he could disregard the new prohibition in his capacity as commander in chief. “The executive branch shall construe [the statute], relating to detainees,… Read More

Justice Dept Issues White Paper on NSA Surveillance

The Department of Justice renewed its legal defense of warrantless domestic intelligence surveillance by the National Security Agency in a 42 page white paper transmitted to Congress yesterday. The white paper essentially reiterates at greater length the previous defenses articulated by the Bush Administration: (1) the surveillance action was authorized… Read More

Article: Preparing For The Failure Of Deterrence

The Royal Canadian Military Institute (RCMI) has published an article by FAS’s director of the Nuclear Information Project about how U.S. nuclear planners are preparing for the failure of deterrence by putting new strike plans into operation onboard long-range bombers and strategic submarines. This includes options to strike… Read More

Lawmakers Object To Nuclear Doctrine

Sixteen members of Congress have asked President George W. Bush to intervene in the Pentagon’s revision of Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations. In a joint letter published by Representative Ellen Tauscher’s office, the lawmakers object to language that appears to broaden the role of U.S. nuclear weapons. The… Read More

Global Strike Command Achieves Initial Operational Capability

On November 18, 2005, U.S. Strategic Command's new Space a Global Strike command achieved Initial Operational Capability (IOC) at Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska. The new command, is tasked with implementing the new Global Strike mission assigned to STRATCOM in 2003. This includes CONPLAN 8022, a new strike plan that includes preemptive nuclear strike against weapons of mass destruction facilities anywhere in Read More

Rumsfeld: Europeans Keep Nukes In Europe

During an interview with the German magazine Der Spiegel on October 31, U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld suggested that it is European governments, not the United States, that are responsible for the lingering deployment of U.S. nuclear bombs in Europe. Rather than defending the mission of the weapons, Rumsfeld said: "Some European countries in Europe made the decision to allow them Read More