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  • Author: Tim Murphy
  • Publication Date: 12-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: The war in Afghanistan represented an eastward shift in the United States' international focus. Previously concentrated on the Middle East, the United States has reconfigured its foreign policy directives to include interests east of the Middle East. The shift was long overdue. Central Asia is a rising regional security concern, and Chinese and Russian actions therein have cultivated robust political ties. Resulting cooperatives and agreements promote Chinese and Russian regional objectives. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) originally consisted of five Central Asian and Asian countries (the Shanghai Five), ostensibly to unify signatories on economic, social and political platforms. However, the SCO is often a proxy to advance Chinese and Russian interests.
  • Topic: Security, Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Russia, United States, China, Europe, Middle East, Asia
  • Publication Date: 11-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: The Iraqi High Tribunal (IHT), or Iraqi Higher Criminal Court, previously known as the Iraqi Special Tribunal (IST), announced Nov. 5, 2006, that it was sentencing former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein Al-Majeed to death by hanging. The verdict comes in the first prosecution Saddam has faced before the tribunal, for the 1982 mass killing of villagers in the Shia town of Dujayl and related atrocities. Bringing Saddam and his henchmen to justice has posed unique challenges to an Iraq that seeks to make a former totalitarian dictatorship subject to rule of law, and in the process respect rule of law by providing fair trials. Unclear is the extent to which efforts to establish an historical record of atrocities, and undertake national healing, would be thwarted by executing Saddam before he can be tried for additional incidents. Of added significance are concerns raised by some voices that the death penalty itself is immoral and inconsistent with rule of law.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Thomas Keller
  • Publication Date: 11-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: On Oct. 2 two U.S. and one Afghan soldier were killed in an insurgent attack in Kunar province. Three Americans were also wounded. A U.S. patrol was targeted by a suicide bomber in eastern Afghanistan on Oct. 7 – the five-year anniversary of the launch of Operation Enduring Freedom – no casualties were reported. Six men delivering aid from American forces were killed by a roadside bomb in eastern Afghanistan on Oct. 14. U.S.-led coalition and Afghan troops raided an insurgent hideout in Ghazni Province on Oct. 17; one soldier was wounded and three militants killed.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Asia
  • Author: Philip E. Coyle
  • Publication Date: 11-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: This analysis first appeared in the November 2006 issue of Current History. “The most effective route in dealing with nuclear and missile proliferation threats may be through creative diplomacy, not military technology.”
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Author: Richard F. Grimmett
  • Publication Date: 11-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: This report is prepared annually to provide Congress with official, unclassified, quantitative data on conventional arms transfers to developing nations by the United States and foreign countries for the preceding eight calendar years for use in its various policy oversight functions. All agreement and delivery data in this report for the United States are government-to-government (FMS) transactions. Some general data are provided on worldwide conventional arms transfers by all suppliers, but the principal focus is the level of arms transfers by major weapons suppliers to nations in the developing world.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Victoria Samson
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: WASHINGTON -China is rapidly becoming, to many U.S. conservatives, the primary menace to U.S. national security. In fact, the attitude seems to be that China is the new Soviet bear. This mentality would have you believe that any gains by China are directly at the expense of the United States. But this attitude is unsubstantiated and based largely on racism -- which it would behoove the United States to drop immediately.
  • Topic: Security, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Asia
  • Author: Benjamin Goldsmith
  • Publication Date: 09-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: In the aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001, the task of wiping out radical Islamist groups and their support networks gained a new urgency for the United States. U.S. attention landed squarely on Afghanistan and Central Asia, the home base of Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and several other radical Islamic groups. The war in Afghanistan created the need for large number of U.S. troops in the region and a base from which to operate, while the newly proclaimed “War on Terror” created a strategic interest in maintaining this presence to suppress further Islamic radicalism.
  • Topic: Security, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, Europe, Asia
  • Publication Date: 08-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: The scope of mankind's activities has experienced expansion from land to ocean, from ocean to atmosphere, and from atmosphere to outer space. Space technology, which emerged in the 1950s, opened up a new era of man's exploration of outer space.
  • Topic: Security, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: China, Asia
  • Author: Andrew Prosser
  • Publication Date: 05-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: In January 2004, China formally requested to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), an informal multilateral export control regime that aims to contribute to the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons through the coordination and implementation of guidelines which govern transfers of nuclear material and technology. The NSG's membership comprises the principal nuclear supplier states in Europe and the Americas, as well as Australia, Japan, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, South Africa, and a number of former Eastern Bloc states, including Russia. The group's decisions, including those concerning the admission of new members, are made on a consensus basis, but the informal nature of the organization means that its decisions cannot be construed as legally binding upon its member countries.
  • Topic: Security, Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, Asia, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand
  • Author: Ali Chaudhry, Andrew George
  • Publication Date: 07-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: Though the exact size of China's nuclear arsenal is unknown, current best estimates are that China has about 280 strategic weapons, and a smaller number — about 120 — of tactical weapons. The weapons are based on intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and strategic bombers, with a naval component under research.
  • Topic: Security, Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: China