Accurate, Focused Research on Law, Technology and Knowledge Discovery Since 2002

Category Archives: Defense

EPIC FOIA Case – Army Blimps over Washington Loaded with Surveillance Gear, Cost $1.6 Billion

“EPIC has received substantial new information about the surveillance blimps, now deployed over Washington, DC. The documents were released to EPIC in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the Department of the Army. The documents also reveal that the Army paid Raytheon $1.6 billion. EPIC will receive more documents about the controversial program In October. For more information, see EPIC: EPIC v. ArmyContinue Reading

Conventional Prompt Global Strike and Long-Range Ballistic Missiles: Background and Issues

CRS – Conventional Prompt Global Strike and Long-Range Ballistic Missiles: Background and Issues, Amy F. Woolf, Specialist in Nuclear Weapons Policy. May 5, 2014. “The George W. Bush Administration’s interest in the use of conventional weapons for precision, long-range strike missions became evident in the 2001 Nuclear Posture Review (NPR). This study called for the integration of precisionContinue Reading

Drones at Home: Domestic Drone Legislation – A Survey, Analysis and Framework

Zoldi, Dawn M. K., Drones at Home: Domestic Drone Legislation — A Survey, Analysis and Framework (July 9, 2014). Available at for download SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2486259 “Can the government employ drones domestically without running roughshod over personal privacy? In an effort to preemptively rein in potential government overreach, most states have proposed legislation that restricts or forbidsContinue Reading

An All-of-Government Approach to Increase Resilience for International Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosive Events

“Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and high-yield Explosive (CBRNE) events have the potential to destabilize governments, create conditions that exacerbate violence or promote terrorism. This can trigger global repercussions. These events can quickly overwhelm the infrastructure and capability of the responders, especially in countries that do not have the specialized resources for response like those availableContinue Reading

Mideast Water Wars: In Iraq, A Battle for Control of Water

Fred Pearce, Yale environment360 “Conflicts over water have long haunted the Middle East. Yet in the current fighting in Iraq, the major dams on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers are seen not just as strategic targets but as powerful weapons of war.”…The stakes are especially high since the Islamic State’s capture earlier this month ofContinue Reading

Security Experts: EPIC Correct About Body Scanners-Invasive and Ineffective

“The first independent analysis of backscatter x-ray body scanners corroborate the claims EPIC and others have made for several years: The scanners are invasive and ineffective. In a detailed report published in 2005, EPIC warned that the x-ray body scanners amounted to a virtual strip search and were an ineffective means of airport security. Freedom of Information Act documents later obtainedContinue Reading

Treasury expert identifies ransom payments as key source of terrorist revenue

“ISIS broadcast its killing of captured American journalist James Foley [note: there is no link to the video - only to a more in depth article about Jim Foley] to show the U.S. what awaits anyone who challenges the Islamic State’s march across Iraq and Syria. Foley’s killing was a blunt and stomach-churning bit of messaging thatContinue Reading

Charity says military use of food pantries has been rising for years

Stars and Stripes: “The number of military families who struggle to put food on the table has been growing in the years since the Great Recession, the nation’s largest network of soup kitchens and food pantries said [August 19, 2014] that increase convinced the Feeding America charity to study servicemembers who use the food assistanceContinue Reading

Tablets join the Navy toolkit for managing maintenance procedures

Kris Osborn – Defense.org: “The Navy has begun a new pilot program to put tablets on board a destroyer in order to reduce paperwork and more efficiently streamline maintenance procedures, service officials said. Roughly 20 wireless tablets will soon arrive on board the USS Laboon, an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer currently pier side in Norfolk, Va., Rear Adm.Continue Reading

Defense Department military equipment distributed free to states around the country

New York Times – “Most U.S. counties have received at least some military equipment through a free Pentagon surplus program.” See also Tools of War in Counties Across the U.S. – “State and local police departments, like the one in Ferguson, Mo., get some of their military-style equipment through a free Defense Department program created in the early 1990s. BelowContinue Reading

Report: British spy agency scanned for vulnerable systems in 32 countries

PCWorld via Mikael Ricknäs: “British intelligence agency GCHQ used port scanning as part of the “Hacienda” program to find vulnerable systems it and other agencies could compromise across at least 27 countries, German news site Heise Online has revealed. The use of so-called port scanning has long been a trusty tool used by hackers to find systems theyContinue Reading

Paper – TSA device flaws compromise airport security

Via FCW.com: “The cybersecurity vulnerabilities uncovered in a number of the Transportation Security Administration’s electronic security and personnel management devices are part of a growing problem for federal IT managers, according to the expert that discovered and reported the flaws. Billy Rios, director of threat intelligence at Qualys, a large security tech firm, presented a paper in earlyContinue Reading