Commentary Series

The Commentary Series is intended to promote better policy by fostering constructive debate among leading policymakers, academics, and observers.  Designed to be timely and relevant, these commentaries seek to illuminate the issues of the day by raising important questions and challenging underpinning assumptions.  Opinions expressed in Commentaries are those of the author(s) alone. Comments should be directed to


AQAP Loses Its Chief of External Operations: Counterterrorism Implications (PDF)

July 29, 2013

Awlaki’s demise improves U.S. security for several reasons. Awlaki’s elimination marks another in a recent series of setbacks for al Qaeda globally. More specifically, it immediately degrades AQAP’s operational planning capacity — especially with respect to plots against the U.S. homeland. Yet, killing Awlaki by no means signals the death knell of al Qaeda generally or even of AQAP specifically.

The FY 2014 Budget Request For The Department Of Homeland Security: An Initial Assessment (PDF)

April 11, 2013

On April 10, 2013, the White House released its annual budget request for Fiscal Year 2014 (FY 2014). This paper provides initial commentary on the budget requested for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for FY 2014, as described in the DHS Budget-in-Brief report and the detailed Congressional Justifications (CJ’s) for all of the offices and components within the Department.

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