National Security Issues
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Spies of Punjab, ‘shown steps of gold’

Spies of Punjab, ‘shown steps of gold’ | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
RT @beenasarwar: Tragic. How the state exploits poverty for its own ends. Spies of Punjab, ‘shown steps of gold’ #India #Pakistan
http://t.co/GQga1rb7rG
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Rare insight to IB and RAW Humint recruiting.

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National Commission on the Future of the Army

National Commission on the Future of the Army | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
In light of the projected security environment, conduct a comprehensive study of the roles and structure of the Army, and policy assumptions related to the size and force mixture of the Army, in order [...]...
ArthurGPeterson's insight:
The FY15 NDAA established a national Commission to examine how the Army needs to structured and funded to meet expected future national security demands.
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OPM announces major update to security clearance policy

OPM announces major update to security clearance policy | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
OPM has announced a series of changes to strengthen how the federal government issues security clearances for employees and contractors.
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Results from a review of system failures in recent years begin to take shape.  Most progress will depend on the next administration.

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Obama administration plans shake-up in propaganda war against ISIS

Obama administration plans shake-up in propaganda war against ISIS | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
A new anti-terrorism task force will oversee the broadened effort to counter online recruiting by the Islamic State.
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Ten years on, and the US does not seem to get effective CT information operations.

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Held Hostage -- Combating Terrorism Center at West Point

Held Hostage -- Combating Terrorism Center at West Point | National Security Issues | Scoop.it

https://www.ctc.usma.edu/programs-resources/hostage-project

ArthurGPeterson's insight:

USMA, CTC focus on hostage taking among jihadist groups.

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Ohio Man Arrested for Soliciting the Murder of Members of the U.S. Military

Ohio Man Arrested for Soliciting the Murder of Members of the U.S. Military | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

You may recall this story from Sep 2015, but here are the charges made in Federal Court this week.

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FORMER DEPUTY SECRETARY OF DEFENSE SAYS THE U.S. SECURITY CLEARANCE PROCESS IS OBSOLETE - “WE HAVE SPIES IN OUR MIDST,” HE TELLS “60 MINUTES”

ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Check out this note about the threat from our current government personnel security program.

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U.S. GAO - Combating Nuclear Smuggling: Risk-Informed Covert Assessments and Oversight of Corrective Actions Could Strengthen Capabilities at the Border

U.S. GAO - Combating Nuclear Smuggling: Risk-Informed Covert Assessments and Oversight of Corrective Actions Could Strengthen Capabilities at the Border | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

GAO finds that DHS tests ports of entry for nuclear/terrorist smuggling weaknesses but does not publish results for anyone to learn anything.  Old story for DHS, newer report.

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U.S. GAO - Unaccompanied Alien Children: Improved Evaluation Efforts Could Enhance Agency Programs to Reduce Migration from Central America

U.S. GAO - Unaccompanied Alien Children: Improved Evaluation Efforts Could Enhance Agency Programs to Reduce Migration from Central America | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

In 2014 the flow of unaccompanied alien children into the US spiked.  This GAO report checked up on what US government agencies have been doing to mitigate this spike from happening again.  The explanation provided in the report does not seem to make sense.  The rate of unaccompanied children has dropped off, but the US Government is unsure why that has happened. DHS gets hit again for ineffective program evaluation.

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CRS - Armed Conflict in Syria, an overview

ArthurGPeterson's insight:

With the arrival of more Russian armed forces along with Cuban advisers, Iran revolutionary guards, and Hezbollah there are more players in Syria than before.  CRS will help you update your playbook.

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HHSC-October-Terror-Threat-Snapshot1.pdf

ArthurGPeterson's insight:

The Congress and the Administration agree that US efforts so far have held Daesh growth, but are not rolling it back yet.

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Who Is Fighting Whom in Syria - The New York Times

Who Is Fighting Whom in Syria - The New York Times | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
The Syrian civil war involves multiple countries with overlapping and at times conflicting agendas. Here is where some of the main foreign actors stand.
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

In case you lost your Syrian Crisis scorecard over the years, NYT provides a new one.

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Why a new Cold War with Russia is inevitable | Brookings Institution

Why a new Cold War with Russia is inevitable | Brookings Institution | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
It is our hope that Washington and Moscow can overcome their current impasse. But theory and evidence point to a sobering conclusion: Neither side can make the concessions necessary to resolve their current differences and prevent relations from deteriorating even further.
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

BROOKINGS paper suggests a back to the future scenario for US-Russian relations.

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How the Digital Transformation Will Upend the Pentagon

How the Digital Transformation Will Upend the Pentagon | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
DOD is one of the most complex and widespread organizations in the world, but in today’s battlespace, embracing digitization helps pull together all aspects of defense.
ArthurGPeterson's insight:
Technology has threatened the DoD before, but its processes have proved equal to the task.
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AQAP publishes insider’s account of 9/11 plot | The Long War Journal

AQAP publishes insider’s account of 9/11 plot | The Long War Journal | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
AQAP has published a two-part interview with Nasir al Wuhayshi, who was killed in a US drone strike in June 2015. The interview is a transcript of Wuhayshi's
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Take a look on the other side of the wall.

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Modernizing & Strengthening the Security & Effectiveness of Federal Background Investigations

Modernizing & Strengthening the Security & Effectiveness of Federal Background Investigations | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
Today, the Government announced a series of changes to modernize and strengthen the way we conduct background investigations and protect sensitive data.
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Feds waited average of 95 days for security clearances in '15

Feds waited average of 95 days for security clearances in '15 | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
Initial secret and top secret cases took an average of 95 and 179 days to process, respectively, by the end of last fiscal year.
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Is the best measure the amount of time an investigation takes or the quality of the investigation?

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GAO Schedule Assessment Guide: Best Practices for Project Schedules

GAO Schedule Assessment Guide: Best Practices for Project Schedules | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

GAO gives everyone a new school book to help with cost, schedule, and performance planning for acquisitions.

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Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Market 2015 - Global Forecasts to 2020 for the $14.9 Billion Industry

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Market 2015 - Global Forecasts to 2020 for the $14.9 Billion Industry | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Coming to a security agency near you.  Wait for the Xmas sales.

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Space Acquisitions: GAO Assessment of DOD Responsive Launch Report

Space Acquisitions: GAO Assessment of DOD Responsive Launch Report | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Hard to believe, but despite all the talk about needs for space resilience there are not requirements for responsive launch.  How  resilient can a satellite constellation be if there is no way to get replacement satellites into orbit in a timely fashion?

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U.S. GAO - Defense Acquisitions: Joint Action Needed by DOD and Congress to Improve Outcomes

U.S. GAO - Defense Acquisitions: Joint Action Needed by DOD and Congress to Improve Outcomes | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

GAO gets back to the reason it is in business with this report.  GAO ignores that modern technology often will cost more than expected, and that the uncertain budgets driven by political processes will continue to effect schedules and quantities.

 

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CRS Insight - 2015 Summit on UN Peacekeeping

ArthurGPeterson's insight:

CRS provides a useful summary of a lack luster program.

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U.S. GAO - Space Situational Awareness: Status of Efforts and Planned Budgets

U.S. GAO - Space Situational Awareness: Status of Efforts and Planned Budgets | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

GAO provides a good update on US space situational awareness initiatives.  This will critical in few short years when the US dominance in space systems will likely face significant competition.

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Terrorism: The U.S. Is Losing the Social Media War

Terrorism: The U.S. Is Losing the Social Media War | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
Our adversaries are using our own technology against us—while we're not allowed to use it to defend ourselves
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

Good read and on the mark.  US  law and policy preclude the government from operating in the social media space to combat anything or anybody, but the US can advertise.

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Measuring the Outcomes of Acquisition Reform by Major DoD Components | Center for Strategic and International Studies

Measuring the Outcomes of Acquisition Reform by Major DoD Components | Center for Strategic and International Studies | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

CSIS paper believes progress can be measured. GAO finds almost no change for major acquisition programs from the reform measures.

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U.S. GAO - Ford Class Aircraft Carrier: Poor Outcomes Are the Predictable Consequences of the Prevalent Acquisition Culture

U.S. GAO - Ford Class Aircraft Carrier: Poor Outcomes Are the Predictable Consequences of the Prevalent Acquisition Culture | National Security Issues | Scoop.it
ArthurGPeterson's insight:

GAO report says Defense acquisition reform has made little to no  difference in the difficulties in getting good weapons system cost estimates, realistic schedules, and advanced capabilities.  No mention is made of the effect of annual budget uncertainty created by a non-functioning Congress.  GAO is, after all, not independent enough to bite the hand that feeds it.

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