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  • National Security

    Fighting New Terror Threats Requires Defining Them

    The way the U.S. President talks about terrorism matters. As chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, Representative Michael McCaul (R–TX), recently put it, “Great leaders do not tell their constituency what they want to hear; they tell them what they need to know.… The American people deserve to make … More

    Bradley Manning: A Disappointing Sentence

    Well, that was disappointing. Military Judge Denise Lind, an Army colonel, sentenced 25-year-old Army Pfc. Bradley Manning to 35 years in prison, which was more than the 25 years his defense counsel asked for but less than the 60 years urged by the prosecutor—and much less than the 90-year sentence … More

    Armed Services Struggle Under Cuts: Defense Review Doesn’t Provide Solutions

    The recent Strategic Choices Management Review (SCMR) issued by the Department of Defense makes some alarming predictions about future readiness, such as the possibility of the U.S. Army losing 70,000 to 100,000 active-duty soldiers under sequestration. This indicates a set of 15–20 percent reductions on top of previously projected cuts … More

    Sexual Assault: Armed Services Under Pressure

    The Pentagon is scrambling to propose a handful of new regulations to combat sexual assault in the military. The provisions they are making, however, are the same as those proposed by Congress. In May, a group of Senators attempted to eliminate commanding officers’ authority in the military judicial process. This … More

    Senate Majority Leader: “We’re Through” Making Defense a Priority

    Senator Harry Reid (D–NV) made it quite clear that he no longer views defense as a priority: “We are not going to be gamed by having the military programs funded at a much higher level than Head Start program, or the National Institute of Health. We’re not going to do … More

    Defense Department's Strategic Review Will Leave the Nation Less Safe

    “The entire sequester, hitting defense and non-defense, was bad policy when lawmakers passed it, it was bad policy when they let it begin, and it remains bad policy,” the Washington Post correctly points out in its recent editorial. Sequestration includes a $500 billion cut to the Pentagon’s budget between now … More

    Morning Bell: Where NOT to Travel This Month

    The State Department closed 21 U.S. embassies over the weekend and issued a travel alert for Americans regarding the Middle East and northern Africa, warning of possible terrorist threats in the region. Where did the intelligence come from that prompted the caution? As NBC’s Brian Williams said, “It all began … More

    Sustaining the Navy Surface Fleet

    The House Armed Services Readiness and Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittees are holding a joint hearing today to discuss the future of the Navy’s surface fleet. The Navy is currently juggling sequestration, the pivot to the Asia–Pacific, and unforeseen requirements in the Persian Gulf. Meanwhile, the sea service is also … More

    Afghanistan: Withholding Helicopter Training Undermines U.S. Mission

    A lot of American blood has been spilt and a lot of treasure has been spent since 2001 to ensure that Afghanistan won’t once again become a base from which terrorist organizations can strike globally. Worryingly, a key part of the U.S. and NATO strategy there—building the capabilities of the … More

    The Case for Strengthening the GMD Program

    Following the failure of the July 5 intercept test of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) missile defense system, Senator Dick Durbin (D–IL) commented that “this is a system that still hasn’t been proven to be able to protect America.” Durbin added that he does not see the value in allocating … More