Chinese Naval Build-Up and Policy Response

by PSA Staff | September 28th, 2012 | |Subscribe

This article was written by two Spring 2012 Participants in PSA’s Congressional Partnership Program.  All CPP articles are produced by bipartisan groups of Democrat and Republican Hill Staff who were challenged to develop opinion pieces that reach consensus on critical national security and foreign affairs issues.

 

The past two decades have witnessed a transformation in the international balance of power, and President Obama has recently sought to rebalance American forces and attention to reflect the increasing importance of the Pacific Rim.  China’s tremendous economic growth and its position as the world’s second largest economy has provided it with the ability to develop new, advanced military capabilities.  China’s new capacity provides more ways to resolve disputes in its favor, complicating America’s relationship with China and making it, at best, more competitive than ever.

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Bridges Not Barriers: Securing Futures and Improving Lives Through Expanded Foreign Aid

by PSA Staff | September 26th, 2012 | |Subscribe

Co-authored by Ray Chambers and Thomas Kean. The Honorable Thomas Kean is a former Governor of New Jersey and Chairman of the 9/11 Commission Report. He is on the board of directors of Partnership for a Secure America. This blog posting originally appeared in the Huffington Post.

Bridges Not Barriers: Securing Futures and Improving Lives Through Expanded Foreign Aid

The international community suffered a profound loss earlier this month when Ambassador Chris Stevens was killed in Libya. While the deplorable attack came at the hands of an extremist group, the collective response of the Muslim world has clearly not been supportive of the actions of a few. Within hours, Libya’s interim president strongly condemned the “cowardly” attack and apologized to the United States. Yet almost immediately, some leaders in the United States seized upon the attack as a reason for the United States to end all foreign aid to Libya and other nations in the region.

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United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea

by PSA Staff | September 24th, 2012 | |Subscribe

This article was written by two Spring 2012 Participants in PSA’s Congressional Partnership Program.  All CPP articles are produced by bipartisan groups of Democrat and Republican Hill Staff who were challenged to develop opinion pieces that reach consensus on critical national security and foreign affairs issues.

In 2004 and 2007, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea was presented to the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and both times the Committee passed the Convention. However, the Convention was never brought to the Senate for a full vote on both occasions. With the United States Navy patrolling every ocean in the world and an American economy struggling with high energy costs, the United States Senate should ratify the Convention as soon as possible.

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Ambassador Crocker Speaks on Middle East Issues After Leaving State Dept.

by Cordell Critchell | September 21st, 2012 | |Subscribe

Ambassador Crocker Speaks on Middle East Issues After Leaving State Dept.

On September 17, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace hosted former Ambassador Ryan Crocker, appearing in his first public event since his tour in Kabul. A small audience was given special insight into arguably the most experienced living U.S. Ambassador with assignments in the Middle East. Ambassador Crocker has served in Lebanon, Kuwait, Syria, Pakistan, Iraq, and, most recently, Afghanistan.  Having returned to civilian life, Crocker often stated to the audience that he was now a “free” man.  As such, the audience was privileged to have this opportunity to hear from someone who has spent nearly 40 years abroad and could speak candidly and honestly about situations on the ground and the relationships between states in the region.

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S. 1301, the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act

by PSA Staff | September 19th, 2012 | |Subscribe

This article was written by two Spring 2012 Participants in PSA’s Congressional Partnership Program.  All CPP articles are produced by bipartisan groups of Democrat and Republican Hill Staff who were challenged to develop opinion pieces that reach consensus on critical national security and foreign affairs issues.

In October of 2000 the Trafficking Victims Protection Act was signed into law by President Bill Clinton.  This legislation was enacted to pressure countries to address the growing problem of modern day slavery and to provide these victims access to freedom.  The current version of the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act is awaiting action before the full Senate and the full House of Representatives.  For the good of the victims of trafficking and the continued leadership the United States has thus far provided, it is our hope that the Trafficking Victims Protection Act will be given serious consideration by the Congress in the coming months.
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Comprehensive Mental Health Treatment Is A Strategic Imperative

by PSA Staff | September 17th, 2012 | |Subscribe

This article was written by two Spring 2012 Participants in PSA’s Congressional Partnership Program.  All CPP articles are produced by bipartisan groups of Democrat and Republican Hill Staff who were challenged to develop opinion pieces that reach consensus on critical national security and foreign affairs issues.

 

As during past transitions from wartime to peacetime, today’s military and civilian leaders are in a position to reassess mistakes made over the last decade and develop new policies to avoid them in future conflicts.  Among the most important of these is the introduction of a comprehensive strategy to address the devastating impact that mental health issues have had on our force.

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Nuclear terrorism treaties still incomplete

by Andy Semmel | September 14th, 2012 | |Subscribe

Andy Semmel served as deputy assistant secretary of state for nuclear nonproliferation in the George W. Bush administration. He is on the board of directors of Partnership for a Secure America. This article originally appeared in the Washington Times.

SEMMEL: Nuclear terrorism treaties still incomplete

Congress hasn’t given its best effort to prevent nuclear terrorism. Despite broad bipartisan recognition that nuclear terror is one of the biggest threats of our time, two common-sense anti-terrorism treaties have been on the “to-do” list for more than half a decade. The Senate has the opportunity to pass those treaties in the weeks ahead and should do so for one simple reason: They would make America more secure.

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Lee Hamilton: First, Let’s All Be Americans

by PSA Staff | September 6th, 2012 | |Subscribe

Lee Hamilton is a PSA Advisory Board Co-Chair and former Congressman from Indiana. 

First Let’s All Be Americans

I was first elected to Congress in 1964. That was the year Lyndon Johnson won a full term as president in a landslide. If ever a president had a popular mandate to pursue his goals, it was LBJ in the few years that followed that election.

Yet one of my strongest memories of him is not of a president reveling in partisan supremacy, but of his cautioning against it. Johnson used to love meeting with freshman members of Congress, and after taking office we Democrats who’d been elected along with him had every expectation that he would allow us to bask at the expense of our Republican colleagues. He didn’t. “I’m an American first,” he told us. “And I’m a Democrat second.”

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All blog posts are independently produced by their authors and do not necessarily reflect the policies or positions of PSA. Across the Aisle serves as a bipartisan forum for productive discussion of national security and foreign affairs topics.