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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Syria: Unrest and U.S. Policy

Syria: Unrest and U.S. Policy

Date: May 24, 2012
Creator: Sharp, Jeremy M. & Blanchard, Christopher M.
Description: Syria remains mired in political confrontation and violence, and is perched on the edge of civil war. U.S. officials and many analysts believe that President Bashar al Asad, his family members, and his supporters will ultimately be forced from power. President Obama and his Administration have been calling for Asad's resignation since August 2011, and have been vocal advocates for United Nations Security Council action to condemn the Syrian government and end the bloodshed. The United States has closed its embassy in Damascus, and Ambassador Robert Ford has left Syria. In the face of intense domestic and international pressure calling for political change and for an end to violence against civilians, the Asad government has offered limited reforms while also meeting protests and armed attacks with overwhelming force. After a year of unrest and violence, Syria's political crisis is characterized by dilemmas and contradictions, which are discussed in this report.
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Kim Jong-Il's Death: Implications for North Korea's Stability and U.S. Policy

Kim Jong-Il's Death: Implications for North Korea's Stability and U.S. Policy

Date: January 11, 2012
Creator: Manyin, Mark E.
Description: This report discusses U.S. policy in relation to North Korea following the death of Kim Jong-Il. North Korea represents one of the United States' biggest foreign policy challenges due to its production and proliferation of nuclear weapons and missiles, the threat of attacks against South Korea, its record of human rights abuses, and the possibility that its internal problems could destabilize Northeast Asia.
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Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses

Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses

Date: January 30, 2012
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Description: The Obama Administration identifies Iran as a major threat to U.S. national security interests. The sense of imminent crisis with Iran which greeted the beginning of 2012 follows three years in which the Obama Administration first offered Iran's leaders consistent and sustained engagement in exchange for limits to its nuclear program but, since 2010, has emphasized pressuring Iran through economic sanctions. This report discusses the effects of economic sanctions against Iran; support to the Iranian democracy movement; and opposition against Iranian human rights violations and Iranian support for Syrian human rights violations.
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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 7, 2012
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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Votes on Measures to Adjust the Statutory Debt Limit, 1978 to Present

Votes on Measures to Adjust the Statutory Debt Limit, 1978 to Present

Date: February 1, 2012
Creator: Murray, Justin
Description: This report provides roll call vote data identified by the Congressional Research Service for measures to adjust the statutory debt limit.
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Kosovo: Current Issues and U.S. Policy

Kosovo: Current Issues and U.S. Policy

Date: February 9, 2012
Creator: Woehrel, Steven
Description: This report discusses challenges that Kosovo faces on its road to democracy and US funding of this goal.
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Kuwait: Security, Reform, and U.S. Policy

Kuwait: Security, Reform, and U.S. Policy

Date: February 8, 2012
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Description: This report provides a brief overview on the current political state of Kuwait, which has been pivotal to nearly two decades of U.S. involvement in Iraq and the Middle East. This report also discusses relations between Kuwait and the U.S., and the continuing domestic unrest in Kuwait, an issue separate from the unrest currently sweeping the rest of the Middle East.
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The Eurozone Crisis: Overview and Issues for Congress

The Eurozone Crisis: Overview and Issues for Congress

Date: February 29, 2012
Creator: Nelson, Rebecca M.; Belkin, Paul; Mix, Derek E. & Weiss, Martin A.
Description: The Eurozone's economic crisis threatens economic stability in Europe and beyond. Four specific economic challenges faced are high debt levels and public deficits, weaknesses in the European banking system, recession and high unemployment in some Eurozone countries, and persistent trade imbalances. Three issues for Congress regarding these challenges are how this situation will impact the US economy, IMG involvement, and how the US and Europe will cooperate to solve these issues.
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Iraq: Politics, Governance, and Human Rights

Iraq: Politics, Governance, and Human Rights

Date: May 16, 2012
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Description: This report discusses Iraq: Politics, Governance, and Human Rights. Relations among major political factions have worsened substantially since late 2011, threatening Iraq's stability and the perception of the achievements of the long U.S. intervention in Iraq. Sunni Arabs, always fearful that Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki would seek unchallenged power for Shiite factions allied with him, accuse him of an outright power grab as he seeks to purge the highest-ranking Sunni Arabs from government and to cripple attempts by Sunni-inhabited provinces to achieve greater autonomy.
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Iraq: Politics, Governance, and Human Rights

Iraq: Politics, Governance, and Human Rights

Date: April 19, 2012
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Description: This report discusses Iraq: Politics, Governance, and Human Rights. Relations among major political factions have worsened substantially since late 2011, threatening Iraq's stability and the perception of the achievements of the long U.S. intervention in Iraq. Sunni Arabs, always fearful that Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki would seek unchallenged power for Shiite factions allied with him, accuse him of an outright power grab as he seeks to purge the highest-ranking Sunni Arabs from government and to cripple attempts by Sunni-inhabited provinces to achieve greater autonomy.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department