Congressional Research Service Reports - 116 Matching Results

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Agroterrorism: Threats and Preparedness

Description: The potential of terrorist attacks against agricultural targets (agroterrorism) is increasingly recognized as a national security threat, especially after the events of September 11, 2001. This report focuses primarily on biological weapons (rather than chemical weapons) because biological weapons generally are considered the more potent agroterrorism threat. This report also focuses more on the threat of agroterrorism against agricultural production, rather than on food processing and distribution, although the latter is discussed.
Date: August 25, 2006
Creator: Monke, Jim
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Bringing Peace to Chechnya?: Assessments and Implications

Description: A consistent theme of U.S. and other international criticism of Russia is that Russian troops use excessive and indiscriminate force to quell separatism in Chechnya and commit serious human rights abuses. There appeared to be fewer Administration suggestions to Russia that it should open peace talks with “moderate” separatists, more tolerance for Russia’s argument that it primarily was battling terrorism in Chechnya, and some hope that elections and rebuilding in Chechnya could contribute to a “political settlement.” But some in the Administration also argue that Russia is showing declining interest in the adoption of Western democratic and human rights “values,” and that such slippage could ultimately harm bilateral relations.
Date: March 31, 2006
Creator: Nichol, Jim
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Clean Water Act and Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) of Pollutants

Description: This report discusses the section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act, which requires states to identify waters that are impaired by pollution, even after application of pollution controls. For those waters, states must establish a total maximum daily load (TMDL) of pollutants to ensure that water quality standards can be attained. Implementation of this provision has been dormant until recently, when states and EPA were prodded by numerous lawsuits. The TMDL issue has become controversial, in part because of requirements and costs now facing states to implement a 25-year-old provision of the law. Congressional activity to reauthorize the Act, a possibility in the 2nd Session of the 105th Congress, could include TMDL issues, but the direction for any such action is unclear at this time.
Date: October 25, 2006
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cybercrime: The Council of Europe Convention

Description: Forty-three countries, including the United States, have signed the Council of Europe’s Convention on Cybercrime of November 2001. The U.S. Senate ratified the Convention on August 3, 2006. The Convention seeks to better combat cybercrime by harmonizing national laws, improving investigative abilities, and boosting international cooperation. Supporters argue that the Convention will enhance deterrence, while critics counter it will have little effect without participation by countries in which cybercriminals operate freely. Others warn it will endanger privacy and civil liberties.
Date: September 28, 2006
Creator: Archick, Kristin
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Death Penalty: Capital Punishment Legislation in the 109th Congress

Description: This report discusses legislation regarding the death penalty in the 109th Congress. The USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act (Reauthorization Act) contains a number of death penalty related provisions. Some create new federal capital offenses; some add the death penalty as a sentencing option in the case of preexisting federal crimes; some alter the procedural attributes of federal capital cases. Other proposals offered during the 109th Congress would have followed the same pattern: some new crimes; some new penalties for old crimes; and some procedural adjustments. Only one of the other proposals, the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, passed, although at least one House approved several others. Three proposals do not fit the pattern; they either would have abolished the death penalty as a federal sentencing alternative or would have imposed a moratorium upon executions.
Date: December 11, 2006
Creator: Doyle, Charles
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Death Penalty: Capital Punishment Legislation in the 109th Congress

Description: This report discusses legislation regarding the death penalty in the 109th Congress. The USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act (Reauthorization Act) contains a number of death penalty related provisions. Some create new federal capital offenses; some add the death penalty as a sentencing option in the case of preexisting federal crimes; some alter the procedural attributes of federal capital cases. Other proposals offered during the 109th Congress would have followed the same pattern: some new crimes; some new penalties for old crimes; and some procedural adjustments. Only one of the other proposals, the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, passed, although at least one House approved several others. Three proposals do not fit the pattern; they either would have abolished the death penalty as a federal sentencing alternative or would have imposed a moratorium upon executions.
Date: April 26, 2006
Creator: Doyle, Charles
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Department of Defense Rules for Military Commissions: Analysis of Procedural Rules and Comparison with Proposed Legislation and the Uniform Code of Military Justice

Description: This report provides a background and analysis comparing military commissions as envisioned under Military Commission Order (M.C.O.) No. 1 to general military courts-martial conducted under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). A summary of the case Rumsfeld v. Hamdan follows, in particular the shortcomings identified by the Supreme Court. The report provides an overview of relevant legislation. Finally, the report provides two charts to compare the regulations issued by the Department of Defense to standard procedures for general courts-martial under the Manual for Courts-Martial and to proposed legislation.
Date: September 25, 2006
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Department of Defense Rules for Military Commissions: Analysis of Procedural Rules and Comparison with Proposed Legislation and the Uniform Code of Military Justice

Description: This report provides a background and analysis comparing military commissions as envisioned under Military Commission Order (M.C.O.) No. 1 to general military courts-martial conducted under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). A summary of the case Rumsfeld v. Hamdan follows, in particular the shortcomings identified by the Supreme Court. The report provides an overview of relevant legislation. Finally, the report provides two charts to compare the regulations issued by the Department of Defense to standard procedures for general courts-martial under the Manual for Courts-Martial and to proposed legislation.
Date: July 25, 2006
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Department of Defense Rules for Military Commissions: Analysis of Procedural Rules and Comparison with Proposed Legislation and the Uniform Code of Military Justice

Description: This report provides a background and analysis comparing military commissions as envisioned under M.C.O. No. 1 to general military courts-martial conducted under the UCMJ. The report notes some of the criticism directed at the President’s M.O., and explains how those concerns are addressed by the military commission orders and instructions. The report provides two charts to compare the regulations issued by the Department of Defense and standard procedures for general courts-martial under the Manual for Courts-Martial. The second chart, which compares procedural safeguards incorporated in the regulations with established procedures in courts martial, follows the same order and format used in CRS Report RL31262, Selected Procedural Safeguards in Federal, Military, and International Courts, in order to facilitate comparison with safeguards provided in federal court and the International Criminal Court.
Date: July 25, 2006
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Department of Defense Rules for Military Commissions: Analysis of Procedural Rules and Comparison with Proposed Legislation and the Uniform Code of Military Justice

Description: This report provides a background and analysis comparing military commissions as envisioned under M.C.O. No. 1 to general military courts-martial conducted under the UCMJ. The report notes some of the criticism directed at the President’s M.O., and explains how those concerns are addressed by the military commission orders and instructions. The report provides two charts to compare the regulations issued by the Department of Defense and standard procedures for general courts-martial under the Manual for Courts-Martial. The second chart, which compares procedural safeguards incorporated in the regulations with established procedures in courts martial, follows the same order and format used in CRS Report RL31262, Selected Procedural Safeguards in Federal, Military, and International Courts, in order to facilitate comparison with safeguards provided in federal court and the International Criminal Court.
Date: July 25, 2006
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Department of Defense Rules for Military Commissions: Analysis of Procedural Rules and Comparison with Proposed Legislation and the Uniform Code of Military Justice

Description: This report provides a background and analysis comparing military commissions as envisioned under M.C.O. No. 1 to general military courts-martial conducted under the UCMJ. The report notes some of the criticism directed at the President’s M.O., and explains how those concerns are addressed by the military commission orders and instructions. The report provides two charts to compare the regulations issued by the Department of Defense and standard procedures for general courts-martial under the Manual for Courts-Martial. The second chart, which compares procedural safeguards incorporated in the regulations with established procedures in courts martial, follows the same order and format used in CRS Report RL31262, Selected Procedural Safeguards in Federal, Military, and International Courts, in order to facilitate comparison with safeguards provided in federal court and the International Criminal Court.
Date: September 25, 2006
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Digital Surveillance: The Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act

Description: The Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA, P.L. 103- 414, 47 USC 1001-1010), enacted October 25, 1994, is intended to preserve the ability of law enforcement officials to conduct electronic surveillance effectively and efficiently despite the deployment of new digital technologies and wireless services that have altered the character of electronic surveillance. CALEA requires telecommunications carriers to modify their equipment, facilities, and services, wherever reasonably achievable, to ensure that they are able to comply with authorized electronic surveillance actions.
Date: May 10, 2006
Creator: Figliola, Patricia Moloney
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Direct Assaults Against Presidents, Presidents-Elect, and Candidates

Description: Direct assaults against Presidents, Presidents-elect, and candidates have occurred on 15 separate occasions, with five resulting in death. Ten incumbents (about 24% of the 42 individuals to serve in the office), including four of the past six Presidents, have been victims or targets. Four of the ten (and one candidate) died as a result of the attacks. This report identifies these incidents and provides information about what happened, when, where, and, if known, why.
Date: April 5, 2006
Creator: Kaiser, Frederick M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Drug Control: International Policy and Approaches

Description: Over the past decade, worldwide production of illicit drugs has risen dramatically: opium and marijuana production has roughly doubled and coca production tripled. Street prices of cocaine and heroin have fallen significantly in the past 20 years, reflecting increased availability. Despite apparent national political resolve to deal with the drug problem, inherent contradictions regularly appear between U.S. anti-drug policy and other national policy goals and concerns. The mix of competing domestic and international pressures and priorities has produced an ongoing series of disputes within and between the legislative and executive branches concerning U.S. international drug policy. One contentious issue has been the Congressionally-mandated certification process, an instrument designed to induce specified drug-exporting countries to prioritize or pay more attention to the fight against narcotics businesses.
Date: February 2, 2006
Creator: Perl, Raphael F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Egypt: Background and U.S. Relations

Description: This report provides an overview of Egyptian politics and current issues in U.S.-Egyptian relations. It briefly provides a political history of modern Egypt, an overview of its political institutions, and a discussion of the prospects for democratization in Egypt, U.S.-Egyptian relations are complex and multi-faceted, and this report addresses the following current topics: the Arab-Israeli peace process, Iraq, terrorism, democratization and reform, human rights, trade, and military cooperation.
Date: July 26, 2006
Creator: Sharp, Jeremy M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Enemy Combatant Detainees:

Description: In Rasul v. Bush, a divided Supreme Court declared that “a state of war is not a blank check for the president” and ruled that persons deemed “enemy combatants” have the right to challenge their detention before a judge or other “neutral decision-maker.” This report provides an overview of the CSRT procedures, summarizes court cases related to the detentions and the use of military commissions, and summarizes the Detainee Treatment Act, analyzing how it might affect detainee-related litigation in federal court.
Date: September 26, 2006
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K. & Thomas, Kenneth R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Enemy Combatant Detainees: Habeas Corpus Challenges in Federal Court

Description: There have been inconsistent opinions in the District Court for the District of Columbia as to whether detainees who are suspected of connections to terrorist actions have any enforceable rights to challenge their treatment and detention. This report describes issues surrounding the writ of habeas corpus as it relates to detaining and imprisonment in matters of counterterrorism. This report also includes several legal cases and pieces of legislation in regards to this issue.
Date: September 26, 2006
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K. & Thomas, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Enforcing Immigration Law: The Role of State and Local Law Enforcement

Description: This report examines the role of state and local law enforcement in enforcing immigration law. The discussion is limited to the role of state and local law enforcement in the investigation, arrest, and detention of all immigration violators. The report does not discuss the prosecution, adjudication, or removal of aliens who violate the law. The report opens with a brief discussion of the types of immigration interior enforcement activities that the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) pursued and the current immigration activities that are now the focus of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). A discussion of the legal authority that permits state and local law enforcement to enforce immigration law under certain circumstances follows. Current administrative efforts to involve state and local law enforcement in enforcing immigration law as well as selected issues are discussed. The report concludes with a discussion of the pros and cons of such a policy and an analysis of policy options for Congress.
Date: May 4, 2006
Creator: Seghetti, Lisa M.; Viña, Stephen R. & Ester, Karma
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Enforcing Immigration Law: The Role of State and Local Law Enforcement

Description: This report examines the role of state and local law enforcement in enforcing immigration law. The discussion is limited to the role of state and local law enforcement in the investigation, arrest, and detention of all immigration violators. The report does not discuss the prosecution, adjudication, or removal of aliens who violate the law. The report opens with a brief discussion of the types of immigration interior enforcement activities that the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) pursued and the current immigration activities that are now the focus of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). A discussion of the legal authority that permits state and local law enforcement to enforce immigration law under certain circumstances follows. Current administrative efforts to involve state and local law enforcement in enforcing immigration law as well as selected issues are discussed. The report concludes with a discussion of the pros and cons of such a policy and an analysis of policy options for Congress.
Date: May 4, 2006
Creator: Seghetti, Lisa M.; Viña, Stephen R. & Ester, Karma
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department