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May 29, 2015

Posts in "Foreign Policy"

March 2, 2015

AIPAC, DNI and ISIS in the Week Ahead

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sarah leave Tel Aviv on their way to Washington D.C. on March 1. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO/Getty Images)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sarah leave Tel Aviv on their way to Washington D.C. on March 1. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO/Getty Images)

It’s another week of manic budget hearings. The highlights are Ashton B. Carter voyaging to both Senate Armed Services and House Appropriations to talk fiscal 2016 authorization and spending bills, respectively. Other topics of budget hearings this week include all four services, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the F-35.

Here’s the non-budget hearing stuff — Thursday and Friday are light compared to the rest of the week with the exception of the aforementioned budget hearings, so we’ll leave them out: Full story

February 23, 2015

Budget Hearings, NSA, National Guard in the Week Ahead

Kerry arrives in the Capitol's House chamber before President Barack Obama's State of the Union address, Jan. 20. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Kerry arrives in the Capitol’s House chamber before President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address, Jan. 20. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

There are so many budget-related hearings this week for all the security/foreign policy-related agencies that we’re just going to link to the committees having those hearings and let you sort out which ones you care about, like so: House Appropriations; Senate Appropriations; House Armed Services; House Foreign Affairs; House Veterans Affairs; and Senate Veterans Affairs. Secretary of State John Kerry is among the luminaries making their way to the Hill for those hearings, and some of the subtopics include the Air Force, Navy and Department of Veterans Affairs.

With that out of the way, here’s the rest of the schedule. Full story

February 20, 2015

Weekly Recap: Presidential Politics, Weaponry, Viagra (Again)

Syrian scholar and Muslim cleric Sheikh Muhammad Al-Yaqoubi listens as U.S. President Barack Obama addresses the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism Feb. 19. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Syrian scholar and Muslim cleric Sheikh Muhammad Al-Yaqoubi listens as U.S. President Barack Obama addresses the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism Feb. 19. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

  • Weaponry. Armed drone exports are an area for congressional intervention, but maybe not like you think. And the technical capabilities of other countries bombing the Islamic State group might be one of several problems with others getting involved.
  • Politics. We’ve spent some time on the other GOP presidential candidates’ foreign policy views, and turned our attention this week to Jeb Bush‘s.
  • Viagra. People seriously can’t seem to get enough of us writing about the Pentagon Viagra budget so it keeps making the weekly recap.
  • Elsewhere. There’s a permanent Secret Service boss on tap. Here‘s what the Atlantic says ISIS is about, and a counterpoint. And here‘s what a Russian cybersecurity firm says about the United States spying on foreign computers.

February 19, 2015

#ThrowbackThursday: The Marshall Plan

President Barack Obama and aides have caught heat from conservatives over their recent remarks about the need to address the underlying causes of violent extremism, such as those related to the economy.

Starting back in 1948, a liberal friend on Facebook pointed out, the Marshall Plan devoted $160 billion in today’s dollars to rebuilding Europe after World War II. Then-Secretary of State George Marshall said in a speech presaging that aid:

It is logical that the United States should do whatever it is able to do to assist in the return of normal economic health to the world, without which there can be no political stability and no assured peace. Our policy is not directed against any country, but against hunger, poverty, desperation and chaos. Any government that is willing to assist in recovery will find full co-operation on the part of the USA. Its purpose should be the revival of a working economy in the world so as to permit the emergence of political and social conditions in which free institutions can exist.

By Tim Starks Posted at 10:12 a.m.
Foreign Policy

February 18, 2015

Congress Could Block Armed Drone Sales, But Probably Just Situationally

In this handout released by the U.S. Navy courtesy of Northrop Grumman, the X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) demonstrator lands after completing the first launch of an unmanned aerial vehicle from an aircraft carrier in, 2013 at Naval Air Staion Patuxent River, Md. ( U.S. Navy/Northrop Grumman via Getty Images)

In this handout released by the U.S. Navy courtesy of Northrop Grumman, the X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) demonstrator lands after completing the first launch of an unmanned aerial vehicle from an aircraft carrier in, 2013 at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md. ( U.S. Navy/Northrop Grumman via Getty Images)

Congress is more likely to block individual armed drone sales deals overseas than to block a new policy announced Tuesday allowing expanded exports overall. (CQ.com story for subscribers) Full story

February 17, 2015

Violent Extremism, Space, Cyber in the Week Ahead

President Barack Obama walks off Air Force One as it snows at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland upon his return from a four-day trip to California on Feb. 16. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

President Barack Obama walks off Air Force One as it snows at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland upon his return from a four-day trip to California on Feb. 16. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

Neither rain nor sleet nor gloom of night can stop Washington on a congressional recess week. Full story

February 13, 2015

Weekly Recap: New Pentagon Chief, AUMF, Viagra

A Pakistani policewoman fires a heavy machine gun during a special elite police training course at a police training centre in Nowshera, a district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province on Feb. 11. (A Majeed/AFP/Getty Images)

A Pakistani policewoman fires a heavy machine gun during a special elite police training course at a police training centre in Nowshera, a district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province on Feb. 11. (A Majeed/AFP/Getty Images)

February 10, 2015

Pentagon Security Assistance to Other Nations Could be Getting Out of Hand

Since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, military aid to other nations has expanded. Under President Barack Obama, who has talked about minimizing the direct U.S. role in conflicts, it’s a big deal. And in the fiscal 2015 defense policy bill, there were seven new security assistance programs created and eight more reauthorized. One expert thinks it’s gone too far. Full story

February 9, 2015

Pentagon Might Get More $ From Congress; McCain, Corker Could Fill Oversight Shoes

The Pentagon’s fiscal 2016 request is well above budget caps, but things might go even better for the military once Congress gets to working on it. And both newer and older names in national security/foreign policy could be ready to fill some lost expertise on aggressive, bipartisan oversight.

Full story

By Tim Starks Posted at 10:01 a.m.
Budget, Foreign Policy

ISIS and the Law, Military Benefits & Afghanistan in the Week Ahead

Putin places a blanket around German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Peterhof garden during the G20 summit near Saint Petersburg on Sept. 5, 2013. (Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP/Getty Images)

Russian President Vladimir Putin places a blanket around German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Peterhof garden during the G20 summit near Saint Petersburg in 2013. (Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP/Getty Images)

It’s a slow stretch at the beginning of the week, unless you’re keen on German-U.S. relations, which is a perfectly fine thing to be. (In case you’re wondering about that photo, here you go.) Full story

February 6, 2015

Weekly Recap: National Security Strategy, Jordan & Guantanamo

It was almost all about the fiscal 2016 budget proposal and the nomination hearings for a new Defense secretary this week. Almost. Full story

Pentagon Study: Vladimir Putin Has Asberger’s; Russia: “Nyet”

Ukrainian member of Parliament Honcharenko Oleksii wears a tie with "God Stop Putin" during a press conference on Capitol Hill Feb. 5. Delegates from the Ukrainian Parliament joined members of the House of Representatives to appeal for lethal military aid from the U.S. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

Ukrainian member of Parliament Honcharenko Oleksii wears a tie with “God Stop Putin” during a press conference on Capitol Hill Feb. 5. Delegates from the Ukrainian Parliament joined members of the House of Representatives to appeal for lethal military aid from the U.S. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

Something bad probably happened to Vladimir Putin‘s brain when he was young, perhaps even still in the womb, and he might have Asberger’s syndrome, a 2008 Pentagon study of his facial expressions and body movements theorized.

Said a Putin spokesman: “GRRRRR” Full story

By Tim Starks Posted at 8:52 a.m.
Foreign Policy

February 4, 2015

Ashton Carter Backs U.S. Arms for Ukraine

Carter, left, at a meeting with Sen. Jack Reed of Rhode Island, the top Democrat on Senate Armed Services on Jan. 22. (Tom Williams, CQ Roll Call)

Carter, left, at a meeting with Sen. Jack Reed of Rhode Island, the top Democrat on Senate Armed Services on Jan. 22. (Tom Williams, CQ Roll Call)

The Obama administration has already begun taking under serious consideration providing weapons to Ukraine amid its conflict with Russia. A prospective new member of Obama’s cabinet, Defense secretary nominee Ashton Carter, sounds like a man set to push them further in that direction. Full story

Lawmakers Vow to Speed Weapons to Jordan

From left: King Abdullah II of Jordan, Sen. John Boozman ,R-Ark., committee chairman Thad Cochran, R-Miss, and ranking member Barbara A. Mikulski ,D-Md., wait for a meeting with the Senate Appropriations Committee on Feb. 3. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

From left: King Abdullah II of Jordan, Sen. John Boozman ,R-Ark., committee chairman Thad Cochran, R-Miss, and ranking member Barbara A. Mikulski ,D-Md., wait for a meeting with the Senate Appropriations Committee on Feb. 3. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

The video purportedly depicting a Jordanian pilot being burned to death by the Islamic State group has key lawmakers saying they will press legislation, if necessary, to speed weapons to Jordan. Full story

Ashton Carter on Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, China, Russia

Ashton Carter gets a full day of congressional interrogation Wednesday, starting this morning, with the Senate Armed Services Committee set to vet his nomination for Defense secretary. He’s already shared some of his views via written answers to the panel’s questions.

Here are his answers to those pre-hearing questions on a number of countries. Full story

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