- The Oxford Handbook of U.S. National Security
- About the Editors
- Foreword: U.S. National Security for the Twenty-First Century
- Introduction: Shape and Scope of U.S. National Security
- America’s Foreign Policy Traditions
- National Interests and Grand Strategy
- U.S. Foreign Policymaking and National Security
- Civil-Military Relations
- The Presidency and Decision Making
- The National Security Council: Is It Effective, or Is It Broken?
- The National Security Process
- Intelligence and National Security Decision Making
- Congress and National Security
- Diplomacy, the State Department, and National Security
- Development Assistance: Rationale and Applications
- Understanding and Improving U.S. Financial Sanctions
- The Political Economy of Security
- Budgeting for National Security
- Military Force Planning and National Security
- Military Operations and the Defense Department
- Alliances, Military Basing, and Logistics
- Homeland Security
- The United States and Iran: Challenges of Deterrence and Compellence
- U.S. Nuclear Strategy: The Search for Meaning
- International Cyber Conflict and National Security
- Encryption Wars: Who Should Yield?
- Space and National Security
- Human (In)Security
- Climate Change and Environmental Security
- Political Violence
- Women’s Participation in Political Violence
- International Terrorism
- Threats and Dangers in the Twenty-First Century
- International Rivalry and National Security
- Interstate Rivalry in East Asia
- The Transatlantic Security Landscape in Europe
- U.S. National Security in the Western Hemisphere
- Epilogue: Five Lessons for National Security Policymakers
Abstract and Keywords
Congress may not be seen as a major player in U.S. national security, but it is congressional action that sets the foundation on which national security policy is constructed. Congressional legislation empowers the actions of federal departments and agencies, authorizes and appropriates funds, and defines the roles and missions of different offices (and who can occupy them). Yet Congress’s role in national security can vary based on the president’s ability to respond quickly to set the national security agenda; the president’s acumen, political skills, and popularity; and structural and political limitations on how the legislature can impose its preferences on the executive branch. Congress finds it harder to prevail when the president responds in a crisis using preexisting powers and authorities, but it can constrain the executive branch using constitutional prerogatives along with informal means such as influencing public opinion.
Nina M. Serafino is an independent researcher who during her career has explored a wide range of war and peace issues. She worked thirty-five years at the Congressional Research Service (CRS), beginning in 1981 as an analyst in Latin American affairs specializing in the conflicts and peace processes in Central America. After serving four years as head of the Asia/Latin America section of CRS’s Foreign Affairs division, she began working in 1993 on U.S. military operations other than war, in particular, peacekeeping. Subsequently, her work expanded to issues related to the use of force, stabilization and reconstruction missions, security assistance, and interagency reform for missions abroad. Prior to joining CRS, she worked as a journalist in New England, Argentina, and Chile. She holds a master’s degree in International Affairs from Columbia University.
Eleni G. Ekmektsioglou is a PhD candidate and an adjunct instructor at American University’s School of International Service. Her PhD dissertation seeks to explain variation in state reactions to military innovation. She is a nonresident fellow at Pacific Forum CSIS and previously worked at the European Union Institute for Security Studies and the European Institute for Asian Studies. She holds a Master’s from the King’s College London War Studies Department.
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