Worth a look
Leaks from both sides of mouthIn a fresh Insights column, NSZ's Josh Meyer explains that when it comes to leaks, the Obama administration plays both sides, "acknowledging the need for highly sensitive and even classified information to get out to the public when it is expedient and beneficial to its approval ratings, and trying to prosecute those who release information that it doesn’t like." Read more.
Tips from a Military InsiderIn one of our newest "NSZ 101" how-to guides, Nolan Peterson , a former special operations pilot and a combat veteran with multiple degrees in political science, French and journalism, offers his insights, suggestions and recommendations from an insider perspective on how to most effectively and successfully cover the military. → Read the story.
Missing Journalist James Foley now thought held by Syrian government, report says
U.S. Journalist James Foley, missing in Syria since Thansgiving 2012, is now thought to be being held by the Syrian government."With a very high degree of confidence, we now believe that Jim was most likely abducted by a pro-regime militia group and subsequently turned over to Syrian government forces,” GlobalPost CEO and President Philip Balboni said on May 3 during a speech marking World Press Freedom Day. (Full story) This is the second time in 18 months that the 2008 Medill School of Journalism graduate has been taken captive in a war zone.
“The family appeals for the release of Jim unharmed,” his relatives said on a web site focused on getting him freed. He was kidnapped in northwest Syria on Thanksgiving Day, the family said.
Watch video archive of May 3 World Press Freedom Day event in Boston: “Silenced Voices: When Conflict Journalists Go Missing.”
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Posts by SB Anderson
2012 FULL-YEAR ANALYSIS TSA finds 1,525 guns at check-in — average of four a day. Complete wrapup, with data, charts, tables. Data below compiled from weekly TSA Blog updates on the number and type of weapons confiscated during carry-on searches at airports. Data is updated weekly (current data through May 9, 2013). (Download CSV file). The number of confiscations was up 14% in the first quarter of this year compared to a year earlier, with … (Continue reading . . .)
Global Warning, a Medill National Security Journalism Initiative graduate student project, has won a prestigious 2011 Online Journalism Award. Winners were announced on Sept. 24 at the Online News Association annual conference in Boston. Global Warning was a finalist in the “Multimedia Feature Presentation, Student” category. Graduate students in NSJI’s inaugural Specialization Program in National Security Reporting last Fall traveled the globe, investigating the effects of climate change on national security. They produced a powerful … (Continue reading . . .)
At the request of the Medill National Security Journalism Initiative, journalism graduate students at Northwestern University’s Medill School spent 10 weeks this summer exploring how to best connect consumers with important online content in new and innovative ways. The team presented its findings and unveiled its products, business plan and research to the Medill community and interested business leaders on Aug. 24 in Evanston. (For a video archive of the August, 2011 presentation, please visit … (Continue reading . . .)
Getting documents from the Department of Defense might get a little easier, thanks to an updated DOD directive (see document below) that declares a “presumption in favor of disclosure” for Freedom of Information Act requests.
The directive says DOD will “respond promptly to all requests in a spirit of cooperation” and will “take affirmative steps” to maximize what’s made available.
President Obama in an executive order on Jan. 21, 2009 ordered “presumption in favor of disclosure” and asked agencies to “harness new technologies to put information about their operations and decisions online and readily available to the public.” (Continue reading . . .)
Journalists who cover the military beat around the country participated in briefings at the Pentagon and panel discussions and presentations with a variety of experts on topics ranging from medical care for veterans to national security law during a June conference organized by the Medill National Security Journalism Initiative. About 30 journalists chosen from a pool of applicants gathered June 23-24 for the “Covering the Military at Home and Abroad,” sessions in Washington, D.C. Many … (Continue reading . . .)
Agenda the from June, 2011 “Covering the Military At Home and Abroad” conference in Washington.
On Friday, Syria joined the Arab Spring uprising trend of besieged government bureaucrats temporarily shutting down the Internet to try and mute protests.
The first news I saw on this was early in the day in my Twitter feed — but it wasn’t a tweet of a news story or someone quoting a news story or government official.
My news came from a tweet based on raw Google data.
In my feed, @BrianBoyer of the Chicago Tribune retweeted fellow Chicagoan @therealfitz with news that Syria had apparently gone dark, based on Google data — and that was two hours before Google itself tweeted about it.
The source: Google’s Transparency Report, which shows near- real-time data for use of Google services by country/region and “visualizes disruptions in the free flow of information, whether it’s a government blocking information or a cable being cut.”
A new United Nations report aggregates a number of efforts to measure Internet filtering by governments around the world and concludes “national regulation of the Internet is taking place on a wide scale, despite ambiguity over appropriate policy and uncertainty over its implementation, and risks to freedom of expression.”
Not surprisingly, East and Central Asia, the Middle East and North Africa were found to house states with the most filtering. The most extensive filtering of the 47 surveyed nations was found in China, Cuba, Myanmar (Burma), Oman, South Korea, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, and Yemen. (See full interactive map).
Government interference with the internet has been a very high-profile issue in recent months, particularly with the Arab Spring uprisings and the role of the internet in the unrest (and government attempts to stop or inhibit the internet as an enabling tool). The report from UNESCO (United Nations Education, Cultural and Scientific Organization) does not cover political filtering alone, however. The studies it cites also measured filtering for social (e.g., pornography), security and other reasons. (Continue reading . . .)
Registration has closed for an intensive one-day hands-on training workshop for national security reporters, focusing on data, documents and the Internet. The session, featuring trainers from IRE’s National Institute for Computer Assisted Reporting, will be hosted by Medill’s National Security Journalism Initiative. The program is set for Saturday, June 25, and will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Medill News Service, 1325 G St. NW, Washington, DC. There is a $50 registration fee. Instructors … (Continue reading . . .)
A fresh analysis by the Congressional Research Office provides a bounty of sliced and diced data for journalists writing about the war on terror and how much the federal government has spent in the past decade on its military efforts.
“The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11″ (document embedded below) details the $1.3 trillion spent through this year. This will hit $1.4 trillion if the 2012 budget requests are approved. The current “burn rate,” as they say in business: $6 billion a month. The Department of Defense has spent 94% of the money, the report says.
The largest share of spending has been in Iraq (66%) followed by Afghanistan (35%) and for enhanced base security (2%). CRS couldn’t account for about $5 billion.
The report isn’t just a dry recitation of numbers; it offers insights and analysis over time by theater and type of spending; dissection of cost trends for (Continue reading . . .)