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This week's newsletter features our newest fact sheet series - Security Assistance in Focus - where we profile U. The data fact illustrates the scale of U. June 17, This week's newsletter features an anaylsis of last week's heated Congressional hearing on the President's decision to bypass the Congressional reveiw process to sell arms to Saudi Arabia and the UAE. The data fact illustrates the step by step process for Foreing Military Sales, and how the President's emergency declaration impacts that system.

June 10, This week's newsletter features new information on President Trump's proposed emergency arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the UAE, including infographics. The data fact breaks down the volume and nature of the proposed sales. June 3, This week's feature examines the recent U. The data fact illustrates the distrubition of security assistance to countries in South East Asia, incudling Indonesia.

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May 28, This week's feature examines the President's recent decision to bypass Congressonal opposition and its oversight role in the arms trade to sell weapons to Gulf nations who cotnintue to conduct hostilities in Yemen. The data fact illustrates the types of weapons the U. May 20, This week, we feature SAM's new infographic which chronicles the history the U. May 13, This week's feature examines the findings of the Congressionally mandated Syria Study Group, which included recommendations to end the U.

May 6, This week's feature analyzes President Trump's decision to revoke the U. Our data fact shows the top recipients of train and equip programing, which aims to build partner capacity of allied defense forces. April 29, This week's feature examines a new CSIS report on the status of government reform efforts to the security assistance sector. Our data fact shows the top recipients of section security assistance programming, which aims to build partner capacity of allied defense forces.

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April 22, This week's feature examines President Trump's decision to veto a Congressional resolution that would have ended U. Our data fact shows the types of weapons that both Saudi Arabia and the UAE are receiving from the United States, weapons that could make their way to the frontlines of Yemens civil war. April 15, Our data fact illustrates the scale of security assistance provided by the State Department to Egypt each year, which is second it volume only to Israel.

April 8, Arms Sales , which discusses important shifts in the U. Our data fact illustrates the number of arms sales that involve licensing deals for U. April 1, This week's feature summarizes the recent hearing on the Trump Administration's proposed changes to the firearms export rules. Our data fact breaks down the Defense Department's train and equip program supporting Djibouti's Rapid Intervention Batallion.

March 25, This week's feature is about the upcoming House Committee on Foreign Affairs hearing on proposed changes to rules governing weapons exports that could reduce transparency and congressional oversight over the international arms trade. Our data fact shows the arms sales notifications for governments with questionable human rights records that are acquiring the very weapons that the proposed rule changes would cover, including military-style small arms.

March 18, This week's feature is a SAM analysis of some of the major changes to security assistance programming proposed in President Trump's FY budget. March 11, This week's feature is a recent press conference hosted by the Forum on the Arms Trade with two Representatives of Congress, multiple arms control experts, and various media organizations to discuss concerns and efforts related to the Trump Administration's proposed firearms export rule change.

SAM is cited and quoted in multiple articles regarding the risks associated with the proposed firearms rule. SAM's data is also used in an article about U. March 4, This week we feature is a Government Accountability Office report that found that the State Department does not know if its security assistance programs in the Caribbean are working because there is no established way to assess overall progress.

SAM's report on the key challenges fo U. February 25, This week we feature an analysis that maps out the global reach of U. February 19, This week we feature an op-ed by CIP's William Hartung that delves into the negative impact that Trump's new gun export rule could have on fueling the global arms trade and putting weapons into the wrong hands.

SAM's fact sheet on U. February 11, February 5, This week we feature a report by CIVIC that suggests a better way to understand the unique risks of multinational coalition operations and offers suggestions to help coalitions better prevent and respond to civilian casualties. January 28, This week we feature an article from Al-Monitor detailing a provision in both Senate and House spending bills that would cut Saudi Arabia off from a key U. Our data fact compares U. January 22, This week we feature an issue brief that identifies critical areas for the new U. Congress to consider to fully utilize their oversight powers to ensure that the U.

Our data fact compiles the total amount of arms sales notifications for countries in the Middle East and North Africa in and ranks them from highest to lowest. January 14, Our data fact displays the countries receiving counterterrorism aid through DoD's Section Building Partner Capacity program in fiscal year November 12, This week we feature an article highlighting recently reported increases in U.

Our data fact looks at the top 20 recipient countries of U. November 5, This week we feature the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction's latest audit revealing that the Defense Department has not assessed, monitored, or evaluated advising efforts within the Afghan Ministries of Defense and Interior. SAM's security aid data to Nigeria is cited in this report on protecting civilians in U. Our data fact looks at the U. October 22, This week we feature SAM Director Colby Goodman's prepared remarks from a recent Hill briefing on impications for national security and human rights from the Trump Administration's guns exports plan.

Congress Should Be Wary of Funding the Lebanese Armed Forces

Our data fact looks at total U. October 15, This week we feature an article that discusses moves in Congress to cut off U. Our data fact looks at U. October 8, SAM's security aid data is cited in this piece to examine total U. Our data fact is a list of total U. October 1, Our feature this week is our recently updated U. Arms Sales Notifications in fact sheet. SAM's security aid data is cited to explain security developments in Cameroon as well as corruption issues in Guatemala.

Our data fact is a comparison of total U. September 24, SAM's new corruption report is cited and two other articles use SAM's security aid data to explain security developments in Cameroon and Tunisia. Our data fact lists U. September 17, Counterterrorism Aid. Our data fact is also from our new report and highlights total U. August 6, Our data fact shows the top 20 country recipients of U.

July 30, This week we feature an article that summarizes a recent settlement between the U. SAM's security assistance data is utilized in a piece that highlights the dangers emanating from fraud, waste, and abuse in U. Our data fact breaks down total U. July 23, This week's feature is a new fact sheet analyzing U. SAM Director Colby Goodman is quoted in an investigative piece about a possible loophole in the Trump Administration's new arms export policy that could make it easier for the U.

Our data fact comes from our new data presented in our fact sheet on U. July 16, This week we feature an article highlighting significant changes in the Trump Administration's national defense strategy that will re-focus resources from counterterrorism in Africa to countering threats posed by Russia and China. SAM's data is sourced in multiple articles including two about the Trump Administration's proposed firearms export rule changes and one about U. July 10, Department of Commerce regarding its proposed rule to transfer certain firearms, guns, ammunition, and related parts from State's oversight to its own controls.

SAM's data is sourced in a recent report analyzing Defense Department security cooperation programs with Spain on Trans-Atlantic counter-narcotics efforts. Our data fact this week shows total congressional notifications for proposed U. July 2, SAM Director Colby Goodman is quoted and our data is cited in an article about a recent bill introduced in Congress that would boost funding for the Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership.

Our data fact portrays total U. June 25, This week we feature a new report by POMED that details the repercussions from President Trump's second foreign affairs budget on democracy, governancem and human rights in the Middle East and North Africa. SAM's security assistance database on Honduras is sourced in a piece examining the plight of Central American migrant children, including at the hands of U. June 18, This week we feature a new book on U. SAM's arms sales database is sourced in a piece proposing a new framework for the approval process of U.

Our data fact depicts total Defense and State Department counterterrorism aid annually. June 11, This week we feature new data on DoD's counter-weapons of mass destruction assistance to 21 countries in fiscal year SAM's recent arms sales trend report and firearms exports notifications fact sheet are both cited in a piece by Arms Control Association.

June 4, SAM's security aid database is cited in a new Transparency International report about corruption in Nigeria. May 29, Our data fact shows the decrease in the State Department's counterterrorism aid under the Trump Administration and shows the distribution of State's counterterrorism aid going to foreign militaries, foreign law enforcement, and civil society groups.

May 21, This week we feature SAM's new fact sheet on trends in U. SAM is cited in an article about U. May 15, This week's we feature a Stimson Center event on U. SAM's database is cited in a law review about President Trump's recent conventional arms transfer policy. Our data fact lists country level details on recipients of U.

Military aid given to Lebanese police at US embassy

April 30, This week's feature analyzes recently obtained data on the Defense Department's counter-drug assistance in fiscal years and Our data fact displays a heat map highlighting the countries that received assistance from the Defense Department's drug interdiction and counter-drug programs in FY16 and FY April 23, This week's feature breaks down the Trump Administration's newly issued conventional arms transfer policy. Our data fact displays the number of times that President Trump and President Obama stated key terms throughout the text of their respective conventional arms transfer policies.

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  5. April 16, This week we feature a Transparency International report on the Egyptian military's abuse of power. SAM's security assistance data was used in an article on the Trump Administration's decision to freeze aid to Libya. Our data fact displays the total amount of U. April 9, This week we feature videos from a recent event co-hosted by SAM and the Forum on the Arms Trade that brought together experts to discuss the intersection between jobs, security, and human rights in U.

    SAM's new arms sales trend report and databases were sourced in a few articles analyzing actions by the Trump Administration and U. Our data fact displays the top 10 U. April 2, This week we feature an upcoming event co-hosted by SAM and the Forum on the Arms Trade that will explore how to strike a balance between jobs, security, and human rights in U. SAM's new arms sales trend report was sourced in an article discussing U.

    March 26, This week we feature a Cato Institute report analyzing the role of U. SAM's new arms sales trend report will be the center of a panel discussion on striking a balance between jobs, security, and human rights in U. March 19, This week we feature SAM's timeline of U. Our data fact displays U. March 12, This week we feature a new SAM report comparing U.

    SAM's new report and U. Our data fact displays a comparison of the total dollar amount of U. March 5, SAM's U. Our data fact presents the top recipient countries of U. February 26, This week our feature analyzes the major increases and decreases in the Defense Department's budget proposal for U.

    The United States-Lebanese Armed Forces Partnership: Challenges, Risks, and Rewards

    GDSS officials also expressed an interest in coordinating more closely with other Lebanese security agencies. Important progress has been made over the past 10 years to build the Lebanese Armed Forces into a capable and credible national institution. However, the U. The LAF is increasingly capable of managing threats to internal security and stability, including threats emanating from the Islamic State, Al Qaeda, and other extremist groups across the border in Syria.

    Security enterprise gives military aid to Lebanon

    Prior to assuming command, he led the 9th Infantry Brigade, a unit with significant combat experience. Aoun is rumored to be shaking up the senior military leadership and filling key senior positions with competent officers who have fought with him, even if those appointments run counter to the traditional confessional balance of Lebanese politics. In at least one case, Hezbollah reportedly tried but failed to challenge one of these appointments. While the Ranger Regiment has the longest record of U. Special Forces officer noted that the Counter-Sabotage Regiment is among the most active counterterrorism units in the LAF, carrying out multiple operations on a monthly basis.

    Moreover, U. One of the more creative initiatives in recent years has been the use of LSOF units to strengthen conventional LAF units deployed in southern Lebanon in accordance with U. That resolution calls on the Lebanese government to extend its authority over all its territory through its legitimate armed forces.

    The agency is the second-most widely trusted institution after the LAF, and its expansive presence across the country makes it a key player in addressing terrorist threats. One especially promising U. As of , Lebanon does not have a dedicated budget for the LAF. The United States provides almost all military support for Lebanon, with the remainder provided by the United Kingdom and other European partners. This was suspended in after the Lebanese government failed to condemn attacks on Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran. However, Saudi disengagement left a gap that required other partners, including the United States, to step in to minimize increased patronage from Iran.

    Although the Lebanese Parliament has discussed providing limited dedicated funding for the LAF, the country has one of the highest debt to gross domestic product ratios in the world. In interviews with the authors, GSD officials expressed satisfaction with the level of training assistance from the United States but stressed the need for more technical equipment and assistance to combat terrorism, with cell phone intercept capability their highest priority.

    GDSS officials outlined two major areas of need to help the agency get back on its feet. Second, the broader agency needs technical equipment, most notably a cell phone interception system and a secure communications system. The U. There appears to be significant duplication of effort among the Lebanese state institutions involved in counterterrorism operations. While certain agencies claim a stronger legal mandate for their counterterrorism role, the military and most civilian security agencies appear to be engaged in counterterrorism due to the nature and scope of the terrorist threat.

    These agencies do not carry out joint operations or voluntarily share information unless it is essential. Informal coordination also takes place through personal relationships across agencies. The lack of a specialized civilian court responsible for terrorism cases remains a problem.

    Instead, almost all terrorism cases are adjudicated in a military tribunal. Human rights organizations and lawyers have expressed concern about a lack of due process and transparency involved in military courts, as well as higher rates of torture than in civilian court systems. With a rising number of civilians arrested on terrorism charges in Lebanon, specifically among refugee populations, this dynamic is especially troubling. During the raid on a refugee camp in Arsal, for instance, the LAF detained four Syrian men for interrogation. It later released a statement that all four detainees died before interrogation as a result of chronic illness aggravated by weather conditions.

    A number of organizations and politicians have called for the elimination of the military tribunal and the establishment of specialized civilian courts. Congress should move swiftly to ensure that Lebanon continues to receive Foreign Military Financing. Specifically, it would prevent the LAF from covering its operating costs and procuring badly needed new equipment. The United States should also beef up the enforcement of Leahy vetting in Lebanon. Leahy vetting can be used to identify individuals or units that are coordinating with or supporting Hezbollah and to impose sanctions as necessary.

    While U. The next round of assistance should augment support for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance and target package development and other gaps in LSOF capabilities. LSOF funding should be protected through a dedicated funding stream insulated from the political considerations affecting broader U.

    Security Council Resolution Senior leaders across the Lebanese military and security services acknowledge that interagency coordination remains a major weakness in their approach to counterterrorism. The United States should leverage its domestic experience and its security assistance to Lebanon to promote better interagency coordination and facilitate joint counterterrorism operations.

    This effort could include support for joint training and exercises to build relationships across various units, particularly between LSOF and the Internal Security Forces. This effort should be closely coordinated with the United Kingdom through its assistance to ISF counterterrorism units. Despite internal weaknesses and Iranian influence, Lebanese institutions remain at least partly independent and play a valuable role in protecting U. The United States should expand support for legitimate institutions and encourage space for political parties, civil society organizations, and others.

    Low-profile support and assistance can equip independent and moderate voices with the tools to push back against extremist ideologies. In addition, Hezbollah has diverted resources from Shiite populations in the south of the country to support its war effort in Syria. The Trump administration should quietly help the Lebanese government fill the gap in basic services in these communities as part of a long-term effort to drive a wedge between Hezbollah and its traditional support base.

    The United States should support this effort and fund a feasibility study to assess the best path toward a civilian counterterrorism court and more transparent detention processes. The study should examine the tools and skills necessary to improve the counterterrorism judicial process in Lebanon, such as training judges on the use of forensic evidence in cases.

    The study can incorporate lessons from other countries in the region with relatively stronger counterterrorism court systems and rule of law, such as Jordan. Saudi Arabia froze the assistance when Lebanon failed to condemn the attack on the Saudi embassy in Tehran earlier that year.

    He should leverage his recent round of positive meetings with the Saudi leadership do the same in Lebanon. Lebanon remains a key partner in the fight against Sunni terrorist groups in the Middle East.

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    However, the best way to counter its influence is to bolster Lebanese institutions and expand security cooperation to respond to shared threats. He comes to the Center with 18 years of experience in peacekeeping, peacebuilding, and stabilization, including a year career with the United Nations. Most recently, Lang was a senior fellow in the international security program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. During his tenure at the United Nations, he served as head of office for former President Bill Clinton in his role as U. Other foreign deployments include a tour as a senior adviser to the U.

    Alia Awadallah is a research associate at the Center for American Progress, where she focuses on counterterrorism, U. Prior to joining the Center, Awadallah worked on the human rights team at Vital Voices Global Partnership, where her work focused on gender-based violence and human rights in the Middle East and North Africa. From to , Awadallah served as a field organizer for the Obama campaign and a program assistant at the Carnegie Institution of Washington.

    Foreign Policy and Security. Get the Latest on Foreign Policy and Security. Building counterterrorism capacity in the Middle East After the September 11, , terrorist attacks, the United States reorganized its military, law enforcement, and intelligence agencies to confront transnational Salafi-jihadi terrorism. Overview of U. In addition to exposing Lebanese personnel to U. This includes air-to-ground missiles, shoulder-fired rockets, precision artillery, small arms, and ammunition. Share this:. Select a Chapter.