Primary Sources

Vital primary sources underpinning the foreign policy debate.

U.S. Senate: Open Letter to the Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran

Forty-seven U.S. Senate Republicans signed an open letter to leaders in Iran about the U.S. participation in P5+1 talks on Iran's nuclear program. The letter states that any agreement reached must be approved by Congress and that Congress can overturn any agreement reached after President Obama leaves office. Vice President Joseph Biden responded with a statement about the nature of international agreements and Congress's role.

See more in Iran; Nonproliferation, Arms Control, and Disarmament; Congresses, Parliaments, National Legislatures; United States

Remarks by the President at the 50th Anniversary of the Selma to Montgomery Marches

President Barack Obama gave these remarks on March 7, 2015, at an event commemorating the protest march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. He discussed the history of civil rights protests, the passing of the Voting Rights Act, and progress and ongoing challenges in the fight for equal rights and opportunity in the United States.

See more in United States; Human Rights; Political Movements and Protests

Remarks by Secretary Kerry at the Human Rights Council

Author: John Kerry

U.S. Secretary of State Kerry gave remarks at the twenty-eighth session of the Human Rights Council (HRC) on March 2, 2015. He discussed human rights issues around the world and the number of resolutions regarding Israel's human rights record.

See more in Global; Human Rights

U.S. State Department: U.S. Export Policy for Military Unmanned Aerial Systems

On February 17, 2015, the State Department released the U.S. policy designed to govern the international sale, transfer, and use of U.S.-origin military and commercial Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), also called drones. Related regulation on U.S. military transfers include the U.S. Conventional Arms Transfer Policy, Arms Export Control Act, and the Foreign Assistance Act.

See more in United States; Drones; Arms Industries and Trade

Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements

Leaders from Germany, France, Russia, and Ukraine met in Belarus to negotiate a ceasefire between Ukrainian troops and separatists. The ceasefire takes effect February 15, 2015, and outlines the withdrawl of heavy weapons and constitutional reform to provide more automony to groups in the Donetsk and Luhansk, regions in eastern Ukraine.

See more in Ukraine; Russian Federation; Peacekeeping; Separatist Movements

Obama Administration: National Security Strategy

The Obama Administration released its first National Security Strategy on May 27, 2010, and the second on February 6, 2015. The National Security Strategy is required by the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act and explains the administration's security issues and the strategies for addressing them. All strategies from 1987 are available on the National Security Strategy Archive

See more in United States; Grand Strategy; Defense Strategy

UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan: Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict

The Human Rights Unit of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) prepares mid-year reports on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict in Afghanistan, as mandated by United Nations Security Council Resolution 2096 (2013), which "recognizes the importance of ongoing monitoring and reporting to the United Nations Security Council on the situation of civilians in Afghanistan's armed conflict and in particular on civilian casualties."

See more in Afghanistan; Conflict Assessment; Human Rights

Remarks by President Castro at the Third Community of Latin American and Caribbean States Summit

Cuban President Raul Castro Ruz spoke at the Third Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Spanish: Comunidad de Estados Latinoamericanos y Caribeños, or CELAC) Summit on January 28, 2015. He discussed how CELAC countries have supported each other through economic, security, and political agreements. President Castro also laid out the conditions he wants as Cuba and the United States reestablish diplomatic relations.

See more in Cuba; Sanctions; United States; Regional Security

U.S.-India Joint Statement: "Shared Effort; Progress for All"

U.S. President Barack Obama and Indian President Narendra Modi made this joint statement on January 26, 2015. They discussed clean energy and climate change, civil nuclear cooperation, and defense and economic cooperation. Both administrations also discussed their visions to strengthen ties in the Asia-Pacific region. Defense secretaries from both countires met in June 2015 and released the U.S.-India Defense Framework.

See more in United States; India; Renewable Energy; Emerging Markets

Munich Security Report 2015: "Collapsing Order, Reluctant Guardians?"

The Munich Security Report was released on January 26, 2015, described in the press release as "an annual digest on critical questions and important trends in the field of international security policy." The first section of the report focuses on the roles of international actors, Germany, United States, Europe, NATO, Russia, and emerging powers. The second section discusses three "hot spots"-- Ukraine, the Middle East, and Asia Pacific. The third section reviews major issues such as terrorism, energy security, and refugee crises, and the fourth section suggests additional reading and research materials.

See more in Global; Global Future Trends; Conflict Assessment

President Obama: State of the Union Address

The State of the Union is a speech given annually by the president to Congress, in which the president outlines the current condition of the United States and national priorities for the coming year, based on the U.S. Constitution, Article Two, Section Three. President Obama has delivered his State of the Union Address speeches on January 27, 2010, January 25, 2011, January 24, 2012, February 12, 2013, January 28, 2014, and January 20, 2015.

See more in United States; Grand Strategy

Central Intelligence Agency (CIA): Final Report of the Rendition, Detention, and Interrogation Network Agency Accountability Board

The CIA accountability board produced this report in response to accusations from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence that the CIA had accessed without authorization the Committee's shared computer drive and removed some files, potential violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and the Wiretap Act. The computer drive contained files related to the Committee's investigation of the CIA's "enhanced interrogation" practices. The CIA's report overturned the CIA inspector general's July 31 report that agents had acted improperly in accessing the shared drive.

See more in United States; Intelligence; Congresses, Parliaments, National Legislatures

European Agenda on Security

On January 11, 2015, the EU released  a preview and fact sheet of the European Agenda on Security, "Fighting terrorism at EU level, an overview of Commission's actions, measures and initiatives," which will be adopted in early 2015 and provide the focus for security priorities during 2015-2020. Most of the strategy will concetrate on counterterrorism efforts. Additional EU security strategies were released in 2003 and in 2010.

See more in EU; Regional Security