Around Town …

  • Former child human trafficking victim pursues career with DHS ICE.  Not widely reported in mainstream media, human trafficking is a major global problem.
  • President Barack Obama mentions export control reform at a speech last week at the Business Roundtable:  “And while always keeping our security needs in mind, we’re going to reform our export controls to eliminate unnecessary barriers.  So some of the sectors where we have a huge competitive advantage in high-tech areas, we’re going to be able to send more of those products to markets overseas. And we’re going to pursue a more strategic and aggressive effort to open up new markets for our goods.”  If they are serious about this, may it be a piecemeal and calibrated approach.
  • Clif Burns penned an item at the Export Law Blog about a company that just agreed to pay a settlement fine of $17 million to the U.S. government for violations of export control laws.  Favorite take away, hire a U.S. law firm familiar with U.S. export control laws for advice on complying with U.S. export control laws (this company seems to have worked with our political cousins across the pond in the UK).
  • Over at the FAS Strategic Security Blog, Peru and Venezuela made this month’s Missile Watch.   In Peru, surface to air missiles seem to have gone missing while over in Venezuela concerns remain about MANPADS purchases by strongman Hugo Chavez.
  • The 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) states that “the U.S. export system itself poses a  potential national security risk. Its structure is overly complicated,  contains too many redundancies and tries to protect too much. Today’s  export control system encourages foreign customers to seek foreign  suppliers and U.S. companies to seek foreign partners not subject to U.S.  export controls.”  It states that the system must be “fundamentally” reformed.   Watch out for these buzz words and approaches.  Any “fundamental” reform would certainly lead to a more complicated and confusing system rich with new and more complicated and more confusing regulations.  A great deal can be accomplished under the current processes, without opening the door to legislative “solutions“.
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