Spanning from the Singapore and Malacca straits to the Strait of Taiwan, the South China Sea is one of the world's most hotly disputed bodies of water. China lays claim to nearly the entire sea, overlapping with the maritime claims of Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, and the Philippines. With sovereign territory, natural resources, and national pride at stake, this dispute threatens to destabilize the region and even draw the United States into a conflict.
Authors: Edward Alden, Bryan Roberts, and John Whitley Politico
Edward Alden, Bryan Roberts, and John Whitley argue that the Obama administration can gain the trust of Congress and a skeptical public only by developing and publicly reporting real measures on the effectiveness of border enforcement.
CFR Bernard L. Schwartz Senior Fellow Edward Alden and CFR Senior Fellow for Latin America Studies Shannon O'Neil talk to CFR.org Editor Robert McMahon about border security and U.S. immigration policy.
Edward Alden testifies before the United States Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs on how Congress and the Obama administration can use data to improve the effectiveness of border enforcement policies and tactics.
The U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy released the National Northern Border Counternarcotics Strategy in January 2012. The press release states,
"The Strategy outlines new actions that seek to reduce the two-way flow of illicit drugs between the United States and Canada by increasing coordination among Federal, state, local, and tribal enforcement authorities, enhancing intelligence-sharing among counterdrug agencies, and strengthening our Nation's ongoing counterdrug partnerships and initiatives with the Government of Canada and Canadian law enforcement agencies."
Edward Alden says that as the United States has for the past two decades pursued securing the nation's borders against illegal immigration, the more serious threat to U.S. national security is that ill-conceived or poorly implemented border controls will do lasting damage to the U.S. economy.
As you stand in endless lines this holiday season, here's a comforting thought: all those security measures accomplish nothing, at enormous cost. That's the conclusion of Charles C. Mann, who put the T.S.A. to the test with the help of one of America's top security experts.
This U.S.-Canada "Beyond the Border" action plan was released in December 2011. The White House press release states,
"The BTB Action Plan sets out joint priorities for achieving a new long-term security partnership in four key areas, guided by mutual respect for sovereignty and our separate constitutional and legal frameworks that protect individual privacy:
• addressing threats early; • promoting trade facilitation, economic growth, and jobs; • strengthening cross-border law enforcement; and • protecting shared critical infrastructure, including enhancing continental and global cybersecurity."
Leading U.S. policy experts have identified energy and climate change as issues vital to economic and national security. CFR's research, meetings, interviews, backgrounders, and interactive content provide an essential source of analysis on these issues.
CFR Experts Guide
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.