Posts in "Marines"
January 22, 2015
January 12, 2015
The first security legislating of 2015 is on deck in the House this week, with a homeland security funding bill the vehicle for a rollback of President Obama‘s immigration executive order. A congressional GOP retreat after that will slow action on the Hill, leaving the rest of Washington to carry the burden of news events. Full story
January 5, 2015
December 19, 2014
With Congress wrapping up its work this week, Five By Five spoke with him for the industry perspective on what Congress did this year, what it didn’t do and what it might do next. (The interview is edited slightly for clarity and length.) Full story
November 12, 2014
November 6, 2014
Following up on that tally of new senators with military records: Sixteen House incumbents with military backgrounds will depart as of the next Congress, and a nearly identical number of new House members with military backgrounds are set to replace them. Full story
November 5, 2014
October 30, 2014
For the latest evidence that national security and foreign policy are figuring into the midterm elections in ways they weren’t even two months ago, consider the Wednesday evening Senate debate in Alaska: Full story
October 15, 2014
The New York Times’ blockbuster story about how U.S. forces discovered chemical weapons in Iraq and suffered injuries due to chemical exposure — unbeknownst to the public — is almost sure to provoke congressional overseers of the armed forces and veterans’ affairs. But the story also contains some worrying information that has implications for future U.S. action against the militant group that calls itself the Islamic State or ISIL.
American troops found thousands of warheads after the 2003 invasion, and a large number remain in Iraq — in easy reach of ISIL, the Times reports. Many of the chemical incidents and discoveries took place around a chemical weapons plant known as the Muthanna State Establishment, which was operational in the 1980s.
“Since June, the compound has been held by the Islamic State, the world’s most radical and violent jihadist group,” the Times reported. “In a letter sent to the United Nations this summer, the Iraqi government said that about 2,500 corroded chemical rockets remained on the grounds, and that Iraqi officials had witnessed intruders looting equipment before militants shut down the surveillance cameras.”
The military contends those weapons are old and pose no threat, but the story notes that Iraqi chemical munitions have a habit of staying dangerous after their expiration dates.
The reporting could prove to be another black mark for the government of Nouri al-Maliki, prime minister until this year, that gave ISIL an advantage. The al-Maliki government was also in charge of maintaining the Iraqi armed forces that collapsed as ISIL advanced.
October 10, 2014
How foreign policy/national security is figuring into the midterm elections is something of a preoccupation around these parts. Dan Perez, executive director of America’s Impact, has his own interest in the matter — he’s part of an organization devoted to increasing the topic’s prominence in the 2014 races, and aiding Democrats on the subject.
This week, America’s Impact joined with several other similarly-minded groups as part of a “6 PAC” event to raise funds for a list of Democratic candidates, featuring Maryland Rep. Donna Edwards (@repdonnaedwards), who is heading up the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s “Red to Blue” program. Perez spoke with Five By Five about his group’s goals and how the 2014 elections have evolved with recent world events (and he just might’ve concluded with a less-than-subtle diss of John Bolton [@ambjohnbolton]). Full story
October 7, 2014
Figuring out how to make U.S. military ground vehicles more maneuverable and cheaper while maintaining armor is a big dilemma these days. And the military has been, specifically, looking to upgrade the Humvee for a while. Northrop Grumman wants to tackle some of those issues, a company official said Tuesday, with a new Humvee chassis it plans to show off next week. Full story
September 29, 2014
A handful of congressional panels are in action this week despite the prolonged recess, and naturally there’s some discussion of Iraq and Syria around Washington, D.C. Also, video games.
September 15, 2014
The first order of business this week on the Hill is passing a stopgap spending bill, which is of course of interest to the defense and national security world. You could also throw a rock and hit any given Iran nuclear event in D.C., so we’ll mostly focus on other things… Full story
July 28, 2014
With the United States-Africa Leaders Summit starting Aug. 4, there is a preponderance of events about the continent this week in advance. President Barack Obama himself will kick off some of the pre-Summit activities. Africa has been a growing national security concern, given events in Nigeria, Libya and elsewhere.
It’s also the last week Congress is in town for a while. The schedule is a bit ambiguous, but before everyone leaves, there could be action at various levels on a new secretary for the Department of Veterans Affairs; legislation addressing the VA’s health care backlog; a bill overhauling the National Security Agency’s bulk record collection programs; and declassification of a report on the Central Intelligence Agency’s interrogation and detention practices under President George W. Bush. Full story
July 21, 2014
Taxpayers for Common Sense found fault with the House’s fiscal 2015 Defense spending bill, and the group now has its share of gripes with the Senate’s $549.7 billion version, too, for spending money on programs the Defense Department doesn’t want and adding money beyond what the Obama administration requested. Full story