Understanding the Crisis in Yemen March 27, 2015 With Yemeni President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi facing a Houthi offensive against his refuge in Aden earlier this week, Saudi Arabia and a coalition of Sunni-majority nations launched a military intervention to push back the Houthis’ gains and restore Hadi’s government to Sanaa. Though the United States is not responsible for Yemen’s recent decline, it has for too long emphasized counterterrorism at the expense of political and… Read More ›
Afghanistan at a Crossroads: Troop Extension the Right Call March 25, 2015 President Obama announced yesterday that he would adjust the timeline for the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, keeping 9,800 troops in the country through the end of the year. The troops will train and assist Afghan National Security Forces and “continue to conduct targeted counterterrorism operations,” President Obama said. Speaking before a joint session of Congress this morning, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani stated his… Read More ›
Senator Ted Cruz’s Imaginary Foreign Policy March 23, 2015 Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) announced his candidacy this morning at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. His speech was long on rhetoric and short on policy, especially foreign policy. Sen. Cruz stressed goals for U.S. policy, asking his audience to “imagine a president who says ‘I will honor the Constitution, and under no circumstances will Iran be allowed to acquire a nuclear weapon,’” to “imagine a president… Read More ›
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A Dangerously Confused AUMF Discussion in Congress as Escalation Looms March 13, 2015 Earlier this week, top officials appeared before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to discuss the Obama Administration’s proposed authorization for use of military force (AUMF) against the Islamic State. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter, Secretary of State John Kerry, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey took part in a conversation that highlighted several areas of concern for… Read More ›
Yesterday, House Republicans released a budget that included a massive increase in Pentagon spending to $613 billion for Fiscal Year 2016. The core of the proposal is a $39 billion plus-up to the Department of Defense by funding Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) accounts at artificially high levels so that OCO money can be spent on what should really be base-budget functions. Because OCO is not covered by the Budget Control Act spending caps, the proposal… Read More ›