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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance

Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance

Date: October 11, 2011
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Description: This report discusses the current political state of Afghanistan, as well as the Afghan government. This report also discusses Afghanistan's relationship with the United States, particularly U.S. efforts to urge President Hamid Karzai, to address corruption within the Afghan government. The report also includes discussion of election fraud and corruption in Afghanistan.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Tajikistan: Recent Developments and U.S. Interests

Tajikistan: Recent Developments and U.S. Interests

Date: February 10, 2011
Creator: Nichol, Jim
Description: Tajikistan is a significant country in Central Asia by virtue of its geographic location bordering China and Afghanistan and its ample water and other resources, but it faces ethnic and clan schisms, deep poverty, poor governance, and other severe challenges. The country continues to face problems of political integration, perhaps evidenced in part by recent violence in eastern Tajikistan. The country also faces substantial threats from terrorism and narcotics trafficking from Afghanistan. After the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the United States, Tajikistan, a supporter of the Afghan Northern Alliance's combat against the Taliban, soon offered use of Tajik airspace to U.S. forces, and some coalition forces began to transit through Tajik airspace and airfields. While most land transport along this Northern Distribution Network traverses Uzbekistan to final destinations in Afghanistan, Tajikistan serves as an alternative route for a small percentage of supplies. The Administration requested $47.1 million in foreign assistance for Tajikistan in FY2011.
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Secret Sessions of the House and Senate: Authority, Confidentiality, and Frequency

Secret Sessions of the House and Senate: Authority, Confidentiality, and Frequency

Date: November 30, 2011
Creator: Palmer, Betsy
Description: Secret, or closed, sessions of the House and Senate exclude the press and the public. They may be held for matters deemed to require confidentiality and secrecy-such as national security, sensitive communications received from the President, and Senate deliberations during impeachment trials. Although Members usually seek advance agreement for going into secret session, any Member of Congress may request a secret session without notice. When the House or Senate goes into secret session, its chamber and galleries are cleared of everyone except Members and officers and employees specified in the rules or designated by the presiding officer as essential to the session. After the chamber is cleared, its doors are closed.
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Jordan: Background and U.S. Relations

Jordan: Background and U.S. Relations

Date: November 21, 2011
Creator: Sharp, Jeremy M.
Description: This report provides an overview of Jordanian politics and current issues in U.S.-Jordanian relations. It provides a brief discussion of Jordan's government and economy and of its cooperation in promoting Arab-Israeli peace and other U.S. policy objectives in the Middle East.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Israel: Possible Military Strike Against Iran's Nuclear Facilities

Israel: Possible Military Strike Against Iran's Nuclear Facilities

Date: March 27, 2012
Creator: Zanotti, Jim; Katzman, Kenneth; Gertler, Jeremiah & Hildreth, Steven A.
Description: Several published reports indicate that top Israeli decision makers now are seriously considering whether to order a military strike on Iran's nuclear facilities, and if so, when. This report analyzes key factors that may influence current Israeli political decisions relating to a possible strike on Iranian nuclear facilities. For Congress, the potential impact-short- and long-term-of an Israeli decision regarding Iran and its implementation is a critical issue of concern. By all accounts, such an attack could have considerable regional and global security, political, and economic repercussions, not least for the United States, Israel, and their bilateral relationship. This report has many aspects that are the subject of vigorous debate and remain fully or partially outside public knowledge.
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Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses

Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses

Date: March 23, 2012
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Description: The issue of Iran and its nuclear program has emerged as a top priority for the Obama Administration. The United States also sees a threat to U.S. interests posed by Iran's support for militant groups in the Middle East and in Iraq and Afghanistan. Tensions have been particularly elevated since Iran's late-December 2011 threat to try to choke off much of the world's oil supplies -a reaction to the imposition of significant sanctions against Iran's vital exports of oil. The heightened tensions follow three years in which the Obama Administration has assembled a broad international coalition to pressure Iran through economic sanctions while also offering sustained engagement with Iran if it verifiably assures the international community that its nuclear program is peaceful. The Administration uses indicators such as Iran's economic deterioration and its willingness to engage in new talks as evidence that policy is starting to work and should be given more time before any consideration of U.S. or other country military options. The Administration also perceives that the legitimacy and popularity of Iran's regime is in decline, although not to the point where the regime's grip on power is threatened. Over the past two years, the United States has ...
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Russian Political, Economic, and Security Issues and U.S. Interests

Russian Political, Economic, and Security Issues and U.S. Interests

Date: November 4, 2011
Creator: Nichol, Jim
Description: This report discusses the current political and economic conditions in Russia, focusing on the impact of Vladimir Putin's leadership and the leadership of his successor/protégé, Dmitriy Medvedev, both of which have steered Russia away from progress toward democratization. The report also discusses the state of the economy since the Soviet collapse in 1999, how the recent global economic downturn has affected Russia, the state of Russia's military, and the current relationship between Russia and the United States.
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Russian Political, Economic, and Security Issues and U.S. Interests

Russian Political, Economic, and Security Issues and U.S. Interests

Date: June 13, 2011
Creator: Nichol, Jim
Description: This report discusses the current political and economic conditions in Russia, focusing on the impact of Vladimir Putin's leadership and the leadership of his successor/protégé, Dmitriy Medvedev, both of which have steered Russia away from progress toward democratization. The report also discusses the state of the economy since the Soviet collapse in 1999, how the recent global economic downturn has affected Russia, the state of Russia's military, and the current relationship between Russia and the United States.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Republic of South Sudan: Opportunities and Challenges for Africa's Newest Country

The Republic of South Sudan: Opportunities and Challenges for Africa's Newest Country

Date: July 1, 2011
Creator: Dagne, Ted
Description: This report discusses the situation in South Sudan as it faces a number of challenges in the coming years. Relations between Juba, in South Sudan, and Khartoum are poor, and there are a number of unresolved issues between them. The crisis in the disputed area of Abyei remains a contentious issue, despite a temporary agreement reached in mid-June 2011.
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Western Sahara

Western Sahara

Date: April 5, 2012
Creator: Arieff, Alexis
Description: This report discusses how Morocco and the independence-seeking Popular Front for the Liberation of Saqiat al Hamra and Rio de Oro (Polisario) have been vying for control of the Western Sahara, a former Spanish territory, since the 1970s. The report discusses recent settlement attempts, as well as how the Western Sahara issue has affected Algerian-Moroccan bilaterial relations, Moroccan relations with the African Union, and regional cooperation on economic and security issues. The report also discusses the United States' involvement in and stance on the issue.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department