Presidential Memorandum — Steps for Increased Legal and Policy Transparency Concerning the United States Use of Military Force and Related National Security Operations

Signed and posted December 5,2016.

The memorandum is for the heads of executive departments and agencies. The subject is: Steps for Increased Legal and Policy Transparency Concerning the United States Use of Military Force and Related National Security Operations.

I selected the following as representative of the content of the memorandum.

“Accordingly, I hereby direct as follows:

Section 1. Report. National security departments and agencies shall prepare for the President a formal report that describes key legal and policy frameworks that currently guide the United States use of military force and related national security operations, with a view toward the report being released to the public.

Sec. 2. Keeping the Public Informed. On no less than an annual basis, the National Security Council staff shall be asked to, as appropriate, coordinate a review and update of the report described in section 1 of this memorandum, provide any updated report to the President, and arrange for the report to be released to the public.”

My opinion: Anything that can be done to improve transparency of the Federal government functions is a good thing.

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