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  • Issue Brief posted April 17, 2015 by Brian Slattery Congress Should Continue Momentum on Coast Guard Cutter Fleet

    Seasonal Arctic operations, need for presence and engagement in Southeast Asia, and declining availability of U.S. Navy assets for joint operations are a few examples of the Coast Guard’s increasing mission requirements. As such, the need to meet their modernization goals is growing more urgent. The Coast Guard budget request for fiscal year (FY) 2016 shows some promise…

  • Issue Brief posted April 17, 2015 by Steven P. Bucci, Ph.D., Brian Slattery, Emil Maine Progress Is Coming on Defense Acquisition Reform

    On March 23, Representative Mac Thornberry (R–TX), Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee (HASC), announced his defense reform proposal.[1] As anticipated, the proposal is a long-term effort primarily focused on reducing wasteful spending and eliminating cumbersome bureaucratic obstacles.[2] The HASC Chairman’s approach is realistic and effective and would be a…

  • Issue Brief posted April 16, 2015 by David Inserra, Charles "Cully" Stimson Three Terrorist Plots Disrupted in Three Weeks: 66th Islamist Plot Reconfirms Scope of Threat

    On Friday, April 10, the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) in Topeka, Kansas, arrested John T. Booker Jr., as he prepared a car bomb for use against the nearby Fort Riley Army post. Booker, a 20-year-old U.S. citizen who goes by the name Mohammed Abdullah Hassan, expressed a desire to support the Islamic State by engaging in violent jihad here in the U.S.[1] Through…

  • Issue Brief posted April 16, 2015 by Steven Groves U.N. Conference Debating a Ban on Autonomous Weapons: Understanding Key Issues

    This week, a ban on lethal autonomous weapons systems (LAWS) is being debated at the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) in Geneva. The U.S. delegation has been non-committal on such a ban, and U.S. policy currently permits the Department of Defense (DOD) to pursue the development of LAWS in a responsible manner. At the conference, the United States should…

  • Issue Brief posted April 16, 2015 by Michaela Dodge, Steven Groves, James Phillips Senate’s Iran Nuclear Bill Misses the Point

    Two days ago, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) unanimously passed the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015, a bill that attempts to bolster the congressional role in the Obama Administration’s negotiations on the Iranian nuclear program. While the effort is well intentioned, the bill sets up Congress to allow the Administration to act as if it had…

  • Issue Brief posted April 15, 2015 by David Inserra Time to Reform the U.S. Counterterrorism Enterprise—Now

    Several months ago, President Obama announced that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) would provide work authorization and protection from deportation to as many as 5 million unlawful immigrants. While The Heritage Foundation has written extensively on the harm done to the U.S. immigration system and the rule of law, another serious side effect of Obama’s executive…

  • Issue Brief posted April 14, 2015 by Ryan T. Anderson, Ph.D. Global Experience Shows that Physician-Assisted Suicide Threatens the Weak and Marginalized

    Allowing physician-assisted suicide (PAS) would be a grave mistake for four reasons, as explained in a Heritage Foundation Backgrounder, “Always Care, Never Kill.”[1] First, it would endanger the weak and vulnerable. Second, it would corrupt the practice of medicine and the doctor–patient relationship. Third, it would compromise the family and intergenerational…

  • Backgrounder posted April 14, 2015 by Roger Scruton The Good of Corporations

    The recent decision of the Supreme Court of the United States in the Hobby Lobby case raises important questions concerning the rights of corporations.[1] That case purportedly interpreted only one federal statute, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (RFRA), and held that “closely held for-profit” corporations are considered “persons” under that Act, capable of…

  • Issue Brief posted April 10, 2015 by Hans A. von Spakovsky Revisiting the Lessons from the Voter ID Experience in Kansas: 2014

    The voter turnout data in Kansas in the 2014 congressional midterm and 2012 presidential elections once again show that the claims by opponents of voter identification are wrong. There is no evidence that the turnout of Kansas voters was suppressed or affected in a negative way by the state’s voter ID requirement.[1] In fact, it may have had a very slight positive effect.…

  • Issue Brief posted April 10, 2015 by David Inserra, Riley Walters House Cyber Information Sharing Bills: Right Approach but Require Fixes

    In March, the House of Representatives released several pieces of legislation on the sharing of cyber information. Two of the more noteworthy of these bills are: H.R. 1560, Protecting Cyber Networks Act (PCNA), introduced by Representatives Devin Nunes (R–CA) and Adam Schiff (D–CA) in the House Intelligence Committee, and the National Cybersecurity Protection Advancement…

  • Issue Brief posted April 10, 2015 by Olivia Enos North Korea Should Be Held Accountable for Persecuting Christians

    In February 2014, the United Nations Commission of Inquiry (COI) on Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea (DPRK) confirmed the world’s worst fears: North Korea is guilty of crimes against humanity.[1] In addition to the atrocities committed by the Kim regime, the report found that “there is no effective freedom of religious belief in the…

  • Issue Brief posted April 10, 2015 by David Inserra Senate Cyber Information Sharing Bill: Good Start but Can Be Improved

    In March 2015, the Senate Intelligence Committee considered and passed the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) of 2015. Essentially the same as CISA 2014 from the previous Congress, CISA encourages information sharing between the government and private sector to improve security.[1] By providing security personnel with information on cyber threats and…

  • Issue Brief posted April 9, 2015 by Ryan Olson What Big Labor Gets Wrong on Trade

    Congressional debate over trade promotion authority and the ongoing negotiation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership has raised the profile of trade policy in recent weeks. In their zeal to block action, some critics of free trade have been encouraging common misperceptions with arguments that are patently false and ignore some of the most basic accepted principles of…

  • Issue Brief posted April 8, 2015 by Luke Coffey, Nile Gardiner, Ph.D. The U.S. Should Back the Falkland Islanders’ Right of Self-Determination at the Summit of the Americas

    The Organization of American States (OAS) will hold the seventh Summit of the Americas in Panama City, Panama, on April 10–11, 2015. In the past, Canada has been alone in supporting the Falkland Islanders’ right of self-determination in the OAS. This summit would be a good opportunity for the Obama Administration to drop its support for Argentina’s calls for negotiations…

  • Issue Brief posted April 8, 2015 by David Inserra, Riley Walters 65th Islamist Terrorist Plot or Attack Since 9/11: Persistent Terrorism Requires Constant Vigilance

    Last Thursday, just one week after two cousins in Chicago were arrested for attempting to support a foreign terrorist organization, two women in New York City were arrested and charged with conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction.[1] This plot is the 65th Islamist terrorist plot or attack aimed at the U.S. homeland since 9/11 and proves that the threat of terrorism…