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 Year: 2010
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Hezbollah: Background and Issues for Congress

Hezbollah: Background and Issues for Congress

Date: October 8, 2010
Creator: Addis, Casey L. & Blanchard, Christopher M.
Description: This report discusses Lebanon's Hezbollah, a Shiite Islamist militia, political party, social welfare organization, and U.S. State Department-designated terrorist organization. The report discusses recent Hezbollah-related conflicts, Hezbollah's relationship with other Lebanese political parties, and U.S. policy regarding Hezbollah.
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Europe's Preferential Trade Agreements: Status, Content, and Implications

Europe's Preferential Trade Agreements: Status, Content, and Implications

Date: March 22, 2010
Creator: Ahearn, Raymond J.
Description: The first section of this report describes the status and primary motivations of the EU's preferential trade agreements (PTAs) currently in place or under negotiation. The second compares the content and trade coverage of Europe's PTAs to U.S. PTAs. A third section assesses the implications of the EU's PTA program for the multilateral trading system and U.S. trade policy. A concluding section evaluates future directions for Europe's PTA policy.
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World Trade Organization (WTO): Issues in the Debate on Continued U.S. Participation

World Trade Organization (WTO): Issues in the Debate on Continued U.S. Participation

Date: June 16, 2010
Creator: Ahearn, Raymond J. & Fergusson, Ian F.
Description: Following World War II, the United States led efforts to establish an open and nondiscriminatory trading system with the expressed goal of raising the economic well-being of all countries and bolstering world peace. These efforts culminated in the creation of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) in 1948, a provisional agreement on tariffs and trade rules that governed world trade for 47 years. The World Trade Organization (WTO) succeeded the GATT in 1995 and today serves as a permanent body that administers the rules and agreements negotiated and signed by 153 participating parties, as well as a forum for dispute settlement and negotiations. The purpose of this report is to analyze some of the main issues in any debate on U.S. participation in the WTO and to address some of the criticisms leveled at the organization. Academic studies indicate that the United States benefits from broad reductions in trade barriers worldwide, but some workers and industries might not share in those gains. Decisions in the WTO are made by member governments, which determine their negotiating positions, file dispute challenges, and implement their decisions. However, some argue that smaller countries are left out of decision-making and that governments tend ...
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Transatlantic Regulatory Cooperation: A Possible Role for Congress

Transatlantic Regulatory Cooperation: A Possible Role for Congress

Date: January 4, 2010
Creator: Ahearn, Raymond J. & Morelli, Vincent
Description: This report focuses on the creation of the Transatlantic Economic Council; the role of legislatures in the regulatory process; and the Transatlantic Legislators' Dialogue and its new role as an advisor to transatlantic regulatory efforts.
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The European Parliament

The European Parliament

Date: January 26, 2010
Creator: Archick, Kristin
Description: This report provides background on the Congress-European Parliament (EP) relationship and the role of the Transatlantic Legislators' Dialogue (TLD). It also explores potential future options that could strengthen ties between the two bodies.
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U.S.-EU Cooperation Against Terrorism

U.S.-EU Cooperation Against Terrorism

Date: May 13, 2010
Creator: Archick, Kristin
Description: This report examines the evolution of counterterrorism cooperation between the United States and the European Union (EU), particularly since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. It includes a discussion of U.S.-EU cooperation progress and ongoing challenges, as well as perspectives and issues for Congress.
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The European Parliament

The European Parliament

Date: February 25, 2010
Creator: Archick, Kristin & Mix, Derek E.
Description: This report discusses the construction and history of the European Parliament (EP), its role in functions of the EU as well as internationally, various international supports and criticisms of the EP, and the EP's ties with the U.S. Congress.
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The European Parliament

The European Parliament

Date: November 5, 2010
Creator: Archick, Kristin & Mix, Derek E.
Description: The European Parliament (EP) is one of the three key institutions of the European Union (EU), and the only EU institution whose members are directly elected. This report discusses the construction and history of the EP, its role in functions of the EU as well as internationally, various international supports and criticisms of the EP, and the EP's ties with the U.S. Congress.
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The U.S. Congress and the European Parliament: Evolving Transatlantic Legislative Cooperation

The U.S. Congress and the European Parliament: Evolving Transatlantic Legislative Cooperation

Date: December 30, 2010
Creator: Archick, Kristin & Morelli, Vincent
Description: This report provides background on the Congress-EP relationship and the role of the TLD. It also explores potential future options should an effort to strengthen ties between the two bodies gain momentum.
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Sexual Violence in African Conflicts

Sexual Violence in African Conflicts

Date: November 30, 2010
Creator: Arieff, Alexis
Description: This report covers the issue of sexual violence in the midst of civil conflict in African nations. Civilians in Africa's conflict zones are often vulnerable to sexual violence, including rape, mutilation, and sexual slavery. This violence is carried out by government security forces and non-state actors, including, rebel groups, militias, and criminal organizations. Some abuses appear to be opportunistic, or the product of a larger breakdown in the rule of law and social order that may occur amid conflict.
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International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues

International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues

Date: April 2, 2010
Creator: Arieff, Alexis; Margesson, Rhoda & Browne, Marjorie Ann
Description: This report provides background on current International Criminal Court (ICC) cases and examines issues raised by the ICC's actions in Africa, including the potential deterrence of future abuses and the potential impact on African peace processes.
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International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues

International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues

Date: November 30, 2010
Creator: Arieff, Alexis; Margesson, Rhoda; Browne, Marjorie Ann & Weed, Matthew C.
Description: This report provides background on current International Criminal Court (ICC) cases and examines issues raised by the ICC's actions in Africa, including the potential deterrence of future abuses and the potential impact on African peace processes.
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International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues

International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues

Date: July 14, 2010
Creator: Arieff, Alexis; Margesson, Rhoda; Browne, Marjorie Ann & Weed, Matthew C.
Description: This report provides background on the International Criminal Court (ICC) and its investigations in Africa, with an overview of cases currently before the Court. The report also examines issues raised by the ICC's actions in Africa, including the potential deterrence of future abuses and the potential impact on African peace processes.
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Trade Promotion Authority and the Korea Free Trade Agreement

Trade Promotion Authority and the Korea Free Trade Agreement

Date: December 22, 2010
Creator: Barbour, Emily C.
Description: This report looks at the effects of the Korean Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) on side agreements via the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
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The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11

The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11

Date: September 2, 2010
Creator: Belasco, Amy
Description: In the ninth year of operations since the 9/11 attacks while troops are being withdrawn in Iraq and increased in Afghanistan, the cost of war continues to be a major issue including the total amount appropriated, the amount for each operation, average monthly spending rates, and the scope and duration of future costs. This report analyzes war funding for the Defense Department and tracks funding for USAID and VA Medical funding.
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Securing America's Borders: The Role of the Intelligence Community

Securing America's Borders: The Role of the Intelligence Community

Date: December 7, 2010
Creator: Best, Jr., Richard A.
Description: Maintaining the security of U.S. borders is a fundamental responsibility of the federal government. This report discusses the contribution of intelligence agencies to the border security efforts of the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense, and other federal agencies that work in cooperation with state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies. Much of the intelligence community's border security-related efforts are classified, however.
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Intelligence Issues for Congress

Intelligence Issues for Congress

Date: July 9, 2010
Creator: Best, Richard A., Jr.
Description: This report discusses the efforts currently underway to improve coordination and encourage better analysis amongst the various agencies within the U.S. Intelligence Community, especially with regard to the ongoing and prominent issue of international terrorism. In particular, this report addresses the false intelligence regarding Iraqi weapons of mass destruction and the current efforts in Iraq and Iran in general.
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Intelligence Issues for Congress

Intelligence Issues for Congress

Date: August 6, 2010
Creator: Best, Richard A., Jr.
Description: This report discusses the efforts currently underway to improve coordination and encourage better analysis amongst the various agencies within the U.S. Intelligence Community, especially with regard to the ongoing and prominent issue of international terrorism. In particular, this report addresses the false intelligence regarding Iraqi weapons of mass destruction and the current efforts in Iraq and Iran in general.
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Intelligence Issues for Congress

Intelligence Issues for Congress

Date: February 26, 2010
Creator: Best, Richard A., Jr.
Description: This report discusses the efforts currently underway to improve coordination and encourage better analysis amongst the various agencies within the U.S. Intelligence Community, especially with regard to the ongoing and prominent issue of international terrorism. In particular, this report addresses the false intelligence regarding Iraqi weapons of mass destruction and the current efforts in Iraq and Iran in general.
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The National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC)--Responsibilities and Potential Congressional Concerns

The National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC)--Responsibilities and Potential Congressional Concerns

Date: January 15, 2010
Creator: Best, Richard A., Jr.
Description: This report looks at inadequacies present in the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) which prevent the Center from adequately performing its duty. These inadequacies include issues with agency organization, lack of resources, and a focus on threats from Yemen over domestic threats.
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Director of National Intelligence Statutory Authorities: Status and Proposals

Director of National Intelligence Statutory Authorities: Status and Proposals

Date: May 26, 2010
Creator: Best, Richard A., Jr. & Cumming, Alfred
Description: This report discusses the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) position created by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (P.L. 108-458). It includes an overview of the authorities granted to the DNI by legislation in 2004 and later as well as the varying opinions of Congress regarding new DNI authorities, as well as related legislation from FY2010 through FY2012.
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War Bonds in the Second World War: A Model for a New Iraq/Afghanistan War Bond?

War Bonds in the Second World War: A Model for a New Iraq/Afghanistan War Bond?

Date: March 1, 2010
Creator: Bickley, James M.
Description: This report discusses the high costs of fighting the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that have rekindled congressional interest in the concept of the sale of a Treasury security to help finance these war costs.
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American Jihadist Terrorism: Combating a Complex Threat

American Jihadist Terrorism: Combating a Complex Threat

Date: December 7, 2010
Creator: Bjelopera, Jerome P.
Description: This report describes homegrown violent jihadists and the plots and attacks that have occurred since 9/11. "Homegrown" and "domestic" are terms that describe terrorist activity or plots perpetrated within the United States or abroad by American citizens, legal permanent residents, or visitors radicalized largely within the United States. The report also discusses the radicalization process and the forces driving violent extremist activity. It analyzes post-9/11 domestic jihadist terrorism and describes law enforcement and intelligence efforts to combat terrorism and the challenges associated with those efforts.
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American Jihadist Terrorism: Combating a Complex Threat

American Jihadist Terrorism: Combating a Complex Threat

Date: September 20, 2010
Creator: Bjelopera, Jerome P. & Randol, Mark A.
Description: Between May 2009 and August 2010, arrests were made for 19 "homegrown," jihadist-inspired terrorist plots by American citizens or legal permanent residents of the United States. The apparent spike in such activity after May 2009 suggests that at least some Americans - even if a tiny minority - continue to be susceptible to ideologies supporting a violent form of jihad. This report describes homegrown violent jihadists and the plots and attacks that have occurred since 9/11. This report also provides official definitions for terms such as "homegrown," "jihadist," and "violent jihadist." The report also discusses the radicalization process and the forces driving violent extremist activity. It analyzes post-9/11 domestic jihadist terrorism, describes law enforcement and intelligence efforts to combat terrorism and the challenges associated with those efforts. It also outlines actions underway to build trust and partnership between community groups and government agencies and the tensions that may occur between law enforcement and engagement activities.
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