- Troop counts in Iraq and Afghanistan: Navy Commander William Speaks, Pentagon, 703-697-0657, firstname.lastname@example.org (Pentagon counts differently than NATO)
- Pentagon contract awards: http://www.defense.gov/contracts/ (awards in excess of $5 million announced every day at 5 p.m.)
- Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS): https://www.fpds.gov/fpdsng_cms/ (search by contract award or awards and thus programs)
- USASpending.gov: created and maintained by the Office of the Management and Budget (OMB) partly in response to criticisms of FPDS
- DoD’s Statistical Information Analysis Division (SIAD): http://siadapp.dmdc.osd.mil/ (stats on casualties, active-duty figures by service, paygrade, gender, etc.)
- Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI): http://www.deomi.org/EOEEOResources/DemographicReports.cfm (demographic data)
- icasualties.org (Independent count of casualties, both troops and civilians, from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Includes a “cause of death” filter)
- Defense Manpower Data Center: https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/appj/scra/scraHome.do (one of its few public databases; allows you to verify military service status)
- National Personnel Records Center: http://www.archives.gov/st-louis/military-personnel/ (where you can request personnel records, including DD-214s and 215s, of discharged and deceased veterans — and fakers — but not general officers)
- Military Times’ Hall of Valor: http://militarytimes.com/citations-medals-awards/ (unofficial list that can be used to verify Medal of Honor and service cross recipients)
- Defense Department’s Selected Acquisition Report summary tables: http://www.acq.osd.mil/ara/am/sar/ (Pentagon’s biannual updates on weapons programs, including quantity and cost estimates)
- Government Accountability Office’s annual assessment of selected weapon programs: http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d11233sp.pdf (independent audit of the Pentagon’s top weapons programs)
- GAO bid protests: Ralph White, Managing Associate General Counsel, Procurement Law, 202-512-8278, email@example.com
- Pentagon Comptroller’s website: http://comptroller.defense.gov/Budget2012.html (great resources for current and planned budgets, including the “Sears Roebuck” guide to weapons systems)
- Pentagon budget search: http://www.dtic.mil/descriptivesum/index_2010.html
- OSD’s Installations and Environment’s Base Structure Report: http://www.acq.osd.mil/ie/download/bsr/BSR2010Baseline.pdf (annual “real property inventory” that contains population data by installation, among other data)
- The Project on Government Oversight’s Federal Contractor Misconduct Database: http://www.contractormisconduct.org/
- Ed Offley’s book, “Pen & Sword: A Journalist’s Guide to Covering the Military”: http://www.amazon.com/Pen-Sword-Journalists-Covering-Military/dp/0966517644
- Brant Houston’s book, “Computer-Assisted Reporting: A Practical Guide”: http://www.ire.org/carbook/
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Medill Student Reports
- Minimizing your digital trail
- Cleaning up after a cyber hack
- FAA backed away from proposing privacy regulations for drones – but that might be a good thing, experts say
- White House pushes for student data regulations
- Have an iPhone? The apps you use may collect unnecessary data, experts say
- Tor and the darknet: shining a light on the web’s darkest corners
On the National Security BeatNational security reporting news, insights, tips and resources from Medill NSJI Digital Fellow Jennifer-Leigh Oprihory.
U.S. émigrés buy gear from U.S. military bases to ship to Ukraine war
The 30,000-strong Ukrainian community in Illinois has rallied to help its brethren because they feel the United States has abandoned Ukraine as it faces a war with Russian separatists in the east of the country. A ceasefire was declared on Feb. 15, but fighting has continued amid doubts the agreement will be honored.
Medill student Taylor Hall spoke with U.S. émigrés in the Chicago area to get the story behind the movement.
Real-time Twitter feed
NSJI in the NewsThe Voice of America featured NSJI in a recent article about how it prepares journalists to cover stories in conflict zones.
- Medill/USA TODAY investigation of U.S. international food aid programs finds significant, entrenched problems Read about the project.
Of note elsewhere
Selected stories from around the web: