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War Powers Resolution: Presidential Compliance

Description: Two separate but closely related issues confront Congress each time the President introduces armed forces into a situation abroad that conceivably could lead to their involvement in hostilities. One issue concerns the division of war powers between the President and Congress, whether the use of armed forces falls within the purview of the congressional power to declare war and the War Powers Resolution. The other issue is whether or not Congress concurs in the wisdom of the action. A longer-term issue is whether the War Powers Resolution is an appropriate and effective means of assuring congressional participation in actions that might get the United States involved in war.
Date: July 11, 2006
Creator: Grimmett, Richard F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Army Officer Shortages: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report assesses the extent of the Army officer shortfall, examines perceived causes, reviews recent retention initiatives, identifies other possible retention incentives, and concludes with a review of possible options for Congress. This report is focused on the Army’s “line” or basic branch officers.
Date: July 5, 2006
Creator: Henning, Charles A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

China Naval Modernization: Implications for U.S. Navy Capabilities - Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report focuses on the implications that certain elements of China’s military modernization may have for future required U.S. Navy capabilities. The issue for Congress addressed in this report is: How should China’s military modernization be factored into decisions about U.S. Navy programs? Congress’s decisions on this issue could significantly affect future U.S. Navy capabilities, U.S. Navy funding requirements, and the U.S. defense industrial base, including the shipbuilding industry.
Date: July 2, 2006
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S.-China Military Contacts: Issues for Congress

Description: This CRS report discusses policy issues regarding military-to-mliitary contacts with the People's Republic of China (PRC) and provides a record of contacts since 1993. The United States suspended military contacts with China and imposed sanctions on arms sales in response to the Tiananmen Crackdown in 1989. In 1993, the Clinton Administration began to re-engage the PRC leadership up to the highest level and including China's military, the People's Liberation Army (PLA). Renewed military exchanges with the PLA have not regained the closeness reached in the 1980s, when U.S.-PRC strategic cooperation against the Soviet Union included U.S. arms sales to China. Issues for Congress include whether the current Administration under President Bush has complied with legislation overseeing dealings with the PLA and has determined a program of contacts with the PLA that advances a prioritized list of U.S. security interests.
Date: June 30, 2006
Creator: Kan, Shirley A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S.-China Counterterrorism Cooperation: Issues for U.S. Policy

Description: After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the United States faced a challenge in enlisting the full support of the People's Republic of China (PRC) in counterterrorism. This effort raised short-term policy issues about how to elicit cooperation and how to address China's concerns about military action (Operation Enduring Freedom). Longer-term questions have concerned whether counterterrorism has strategically transformed bilateral relations and whether China's support has been valuable and not obtained at the expense of other U.S. interests.
Date: June 27, 2006
Creator: Kan, Shirley A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Free Mail for Troops Overseas

Description: Members of the armed forces on duty in designated combat areas can send personal correspondence, free of postage, to addresses in the United States. There has never been a comparable provision of free postage for letters or packages sent from family members in the United States to loved ones in wartime service overseas. Two bills (H.R. 923 and H.R. 2874) have been introduced that would allow family members and, in the case of H.R. 2874, certain charities to send letters and packages to servicemen and women in combat zones free of postage. H.R. 923 in amended form as a bill that would allow service members overseas to send vouchers to family or loved ones that would be redeemable for the postage expenses of one letter of 15-pound package per month is included in the FY2007 Defense Authorization Act, which is now awaiting action in the Senate.
Date: June 22, 2006
Creator: Stevens, Nye
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: The Navy in February 2006 proposed to maintain in coming years a fleet of 313 ships, including, among other things, 11 aircraft carriers, 48 attack submarines (SSNs), 88 cruisers and destroyers, 55 Littoral Combat Ships (LCSs), 31 amphibious ships, and a Maritime Prepositioning Force (Future), or MPF(F), squadron with 12 new-construction amphibious and sealift-type ships. The Navy says that for its shipbuilding plans to be affordable and executable, the Navy needs to control certain non-shipbuilding expenditures and build ships within estimated costs. The Navy's shipbuilding plans raise potential issues regarding the shipbuilding industrial base, particularly in the areas of the submarine design and engineering base, and the surface combatant construction base.
Date: June 22, 2006
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Nuclear Weapons: Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty

Description: A comprehensive test ban treaty, or CTBT, is the oldest item on the nuclear arms control agenda. These treaties currently limit testing to underground only, with a maximum force equal to 150,000 tons of TNT. Since 1997, the United States has held 22 "subcritical experiments" at the Nevada Test Site, asserting that these experiments do not violate the CTBT because they cannot produce a self-sustaining chain reaction. The Senate rejected the CTBT on October 13, 1999, and the current Administration under President George W. Bush has indicated that it will continue to oppose the CTBT, will continue to adhere to the test moratorium, is considering modifying existing warheads for use against hard and deeply-buried targets, has not ruled out resumed testing, and has no plans to test.
Date: June 21, 2006
Creator: Medalia, Jonathan
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Ship Procurement: Alternative Funding Approaches -- Background and Options for Congress

Description: Some observers have proposed procuring Navy ships using incremental funding or advance appropriations rather than the traditional full funding approach that has been used to procure most Navy ships. Supporters believe these alternative funding approaches could increase stability in Navy shipbuilding plans and perhaps increase the number of Navy ships that could be built for a given total amount of ship-procurement funding. The issue for the 109th Congress is whether to maintain or change current practices for funding Navy ship procurement. Congress's decision could be significant because the full funding policy relates to Congress's power of the purse and its responsibility for conducting oversight of defense programs.
Date: June 20, 2006
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department