A map of the Syrian conflict and the displaced refugees. US State Department Graphic
The following is from the Jan. 14, 2014 Congressional Research Service report: Armed Conflict in Syria: Overview and U.S. Response.
Fighting continues across Syria, pitting government forces and their foreign allies against a range of anti-government insurgents, some of whom also are fighting amongst themselves. Since March 2011, the conflict has driven more than 2.3 million Syrians into neighboring countries as refugees (out of a total population of more than 22 million). Read More
An illustration of China’s contested Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) from state run media. Xinhua Photo
On November 23, 2013, China established an Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) over a significant portion of the East China Sea (ECS). The ADIZ includes the airspace over disputed areas, including the Senkaku Islands contested by China and Japan. Read More
US Naval Academy
From the Pentagon report: Annual Report on Sexual Harassment and Violence at the Military Service Academies Academic Program Year 2012-2013, released on Jan. 10. 2014.
At each of the three academies there is evidence that some cadets and midshipmen disregarded academy policies and practices in these areas and engaged in gender-related misbehavior and misconduct, targeting fellow cadets and midshipmen as the focus of crude and offensive language and sexist comments. Read More
The following is from the Jan. 3, 2014 Congressional Research Service report: Nonstrategic Nuclear Weapons.
The FY2013 Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 4310, Section 1037) indicates that it is the sense of Congress that “the United States should pursue negotiations with the Russian Federation aimed at the reduction of Russian deployed and nondeployed nonstrategic nuclear forces.” The United States and Russia have not included limits on these weapons in past arms control agreements. Nevertheless, some analysts and Members of Congress have argued that disparities in the numbers of nonstrategic nuclear weapons may become more important as the United States and Russia reduce their numbers of deployed long-range, strategic nuclear weapons. Read More
The following are slides from a Jan. 7, 2014 briefing from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO): Approaches to Reducing Federal Spending on National Defense. Read More
The U.S. Navy has released its Surface Warfare Officer 2013 Junior Officer survey. The service has conducted the survey once every two years since 1999. Read More
The following is from the Department of Defense’s Unmanned Systems Integrated Roadmap: Fiscal Years 2013 to 2038.
Northrop Grumman MQ-4C Triton. US Navy Photo
Unmanned systems continue to deliver new and enhanced battlefield capabilities to the warfighter. While the demand for unmanned systems continues unabated today, a number of factors will influence unmanned program development in the future. Read More
USS Tennessee (SSBN 734) pulls away from its escort boats in transit to its dive point in 2013. US Navy Photo
The following is the Dec. 19, 2013 report from the Congressional Budget Office: Projected Costs of
U.S. Nuclear Forces, 2014 to 2023.
In its most recent review of U.S. nuclear policy, the Administration resolved to maintain all three types of systems that can deliver nuclear weapons over long ranges—submarines that launch ballistic missiles (SSBNs), land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), and long-range bombers—known collectively as the strategic nuclear triad.
From the Dec. 16, 2013 Congressional Research Service report: Defense: FY2014 Authorization and Appropriations.
President Obama’s FY2014 base budget request of $552.0 billion in discretionary budget authority for the Department of Defense (DOD) and defense-related programs of other agencies (excluding war costs), exceeds by $53.9 billion the legally binding cap on defense funding for FY2014 that was enacted in 2011 as part of the Budget Control Act (P.L. 112-25). Unless the Budget Control Act (BCA) is amended, either Congress will have to cut the Administration’s National Defense request by $53.9 billion (about 9.8%) to meet the BCA cap of $498.1 billion, or else the BCA law will reduce the appropriation to the level set by the cap through a process of sequestration, beginning in January 2014. Read More
Marines prepare to disembark amphibious dock landing ship USS Harpers Ferry (LSD-49) in Guam on Sept. 12, 2013. US Navy Photo
From the Dec. 17, 2013 Government Accountability Office report: Further Analysis Needed to Identify Guam’s Public Infrastructure Requirements and Costs for DOD’s Realignment Plan. Read More