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Saturday, June 21, 2014

Bringing Our Workplace Policies into the 21st Century

THE COMPUTER CALLED WOLF

FROM:  LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL LABORATORY 

Photo Caption: The Wolf computer system modernizes mid-tier resources for Los Alamos scientists.
High-Performance Computer System Installed at Los Alamos National Laboratory

Unclassified ‘Wolf’ system to advance many fields of science

LOS ALAMOS, N.M., June 17, 2014—Los Alamos National Laboratory recently installed a new high-performance computer system, called Wolf, which will be used for unclassified research.

“This machine modernizes our mid-tier resources available to Laboratory scientists,” said Bob Tomlinson, of the Laboratory’s High Performance Computing group. “Wolf is a critical tool that can be used to advance many fields of science.”

Wolf, manufactured by the Cray Inc., has 616 compute nodes each with two 8-core 2.6 GHz Intel “Sandybridge” processors, 64 GB of memory and a high speed Infiniband interconnect network. It utilizes the Laboratory’s existing Panasas parallel file system as well as a new one based on Lustre technology.

The Wolf computing system operates at 197 teraflops per second. Collectively, the system has 9,856 compute cores and 19.7 terabytes of memory. It provides users with 86.3 million central processing unit core hours per year. Initial science research projects to utilize Wolf will include climate, materials and astrophysics modeling.

The Laboratory’s Institutional Computing program provides production-computing resources for open and collaborative science at the Laboratory. Institutional Computing provides access to every scientist and engineer at the Laboratory through a competitive, peer-reviewed proposal process. Los Alamos scientists use these systems for fundamental as well as applied research in a wide variety of technical fields.

Los Alamos has, since the advent of computing, been a world leader in high-performance computing and computational science for national security challenges. The Laboratory leads in providing the computing environment, systems, and technologies that support the evolution to exascale-class computing.

SECRETARY KERRY, NEW ZEALAND PRIME MINISTER KEY MAKE REMARKS AFTER MEETING

FROM:  U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT 

Remarks With Prime Minister of New Zealand John Key After Their Meeting

Remarks
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
June 19, 2014


SECRETARY KERRY:  Good afternoon, everybody.  I apologize for keeping folks waiting for a moment here.  It’s my great privilege to welcome the prime minister of New Zealand, the great Kiwi friend of the United States and someone I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with in a number of different conferences and locales, and I’m delighted that you’re here today, John.  Thank you very much for being with us.

Before I say a little more about the New Zealand-U.S. relationship, I want to say a few words about the situation that we’re all focused on intensely and with the greatest concern imaginable, and that is, of course, Iraq.  Iraq, in our country and in other places in the world, has long been hotly debated with contrasting views from many different quarters.  But two things are crystal clear.  This is no time for that debate, and it’s not the time for a war about the war.  Second, this is the time to ensure that Iraq receives the help that is needed to break the momentum of extremist groups and to bolster the capabilities of Iraq’s security forces.  And we do that to – because that is critical to the security interests of our country, the security interests of the region, of allies and friends of ours, and it is the way to best fulfil the mission which our troops spent their lives and treasure securing for Iraqis, and it is still possible that if Iraqis make those right choices that they can define their future in the way that our forces and others work so hard to give them the opportunity to do so.

An hour ago President Obama laid out a series of immediate steps, which include reinforcing the security of our Embassy and American personnel in Iraq as well as expanding surveillance and intelligence-gathering efforts on the ground, increasing our support to Iraqi security forces, including by sending additional U.S. personnel, non-combatant forces and positioning additional U.S. military assets throughout the region should targeted action become necessary.

Over the past 10 days I have been consistently on the phone with a number of our allies and partners inside Iraq in the region and across Europe as part of a diplomatic effort to resolve this crisis, because we know there is no single military answer.  At the President’s request, I will take the next step in that diplomatic effort traveling to Europe and the Middle East next week to consult with our partners face to face. 

Make no mistake, ISIL is a threat to Iraq and the entire region.  And the United States is responding to that threat.  But our efforts will only be successful if Iraqi leaders rise above their differences and come around and embrace a political plan that defines Iraq’s future through the political process, not through insurgency and conflict.  That will require diplomacy and it will require willpower, leadership, decisions by those who really hold Iraq’s future in their hands.  And we will be working very, very hard on all of this in the next few days.

Now, returning to the meeting that I just had with Prime Minister Key, New Zealand’s foreign minister, Murray McCully, was here a couple of days ago in the State Department sharing a very important conference with us on the oceans.  And it’s really good to welcome the prime minister here, who is a passionate advocate for the actions that we need to take to protect our fisheries, protect the ocean from pollution, acidification, from overfishing.  And New Zealand is obviously, as an island nation, right on the front lines of climate change.  And they also understand as well as anybody the extraordinary challenges that are faced by the marine world.  They are a country in the ocean.  And both Murray and the prime minister have a firsthand understanding of the enormous stakes and of the urgency of our taking action. 

We are very pleased in the United States to be able to count New Zealand as an extraordinary partner committed to this effort.  And the ocean conference was really only just the most recent opportunity to be able to celebrate and work on together the remarkable commitment of New Zealand to various efforts to protect our planet.  We share a number of environmental priorities, including establishing the world’s largest marine sanctuary with Antarctica’s Ross Sea.  As the United States continues President Obama’s commitment to rebalance towards the Asia Pacific, New Zealand has become an increasingly critical partner on everything from regional security to humanitarian assistance to relief to helping to build up shared prosperity throughout the Pacific.

So the prime minister and I are in full agreement that the best way to bring economic growth and new jobs to both of our shores is to finalize the Trans-Pacific Partnership.  In fact, the last time that we were together was in October for the TPP leaders meeting in Bali.  And President Obama and the prime minister are both – President Obama because he proposed it, obviously, and the prime minister because he was one of the first to embrace it and understand its benefits – are deeply committed to passing the TPP.  And it’s about much more than just creating jobs.  It’s about creating a set of rules that will bring other nations to the table to race to the top in the standards by which we do global business. 

And it will be good because it will attract the investment and ultimately create the jobs necessary to kick the global economy into gear.  By making sure that the companies of all of our nations are playing by the same set of rules, we will in fact improve life for all of our citizens.  The TPP will promote innovation, transparency, and fairness, and it will do so in an area that represents 40 percent of the global marketplace, which is pretty extraordinary, and that’s market power.  And that has an impact on choices that other countries, even those outside of it, make, because they will want to sell their goods within the framework of that market.  So it’s in the best interest of every nation to get this off the ground as quickly as possible, and we intend to continue to work to do that. 

So it’s a great pleasure, again, for me to have to the prime minister here in Washington.  We look forward to continuing to work on all of these issues together, and John, I’m really happy to welcome you to the State Department.

Thank you, sir.

PRIME MINISTER KEY:  Well, Mr. Secretary, firstly can I just thank you for the invitation to be at the State Department.  Let me keep my remarks brief.  We enjoyed a very wide-ranging conversation today, an opportunity to discuss some of the real hotspots around the world.  We want to thank and salute you, Mr. Secretary, and the President, for your global leadership, for your friendship towards New Zealand. 

We recognize and understand the very heavy lifting that the United States has to do in some of these difficult situations.  I’d like to think that New Zealand, as a small country, plays its part and, where appropriate, lead and support.  And our relationship is a very longstanding and very deep one.  It’s a great friendship and we thank you for what you’re doing.

SECRETARY KERRY:  Thank you, my friend.  Thank you, sir.

MS. PSAKI:  The first question will be from Margaret Brennan of CBS News. 

QUESTION:  Thank you, and thank you Mr. Secretary.  The U.S. has been asking Prime Minister Maliki for years to be more inclusive.  You’ve asked him to do it, and he’s failed.  So should he resign at this point?  How much more time should he be given?  And is the U.S. any closer to delivering the kind of help that the Free Syrian Army is asking for in its battle against ISIS?

SECRETARY KERRY:  Well, Margaret, it’s up to the people of Iraq to decide the future of their government, not the United States.  And it is a fact well known that we have been pushing for certain reforms for a period of time, but more importantly people in Iraq have been asking for these reforms for a period of time.  One of the great problems that exists right now, which is a cloud over the governance of Iraq, is the degree to which there are parties – Kurds, particularly – Sunni – who feel left out and feel like they have not been included in the political process. 

So if there is to be a solution, recognizing that ISIL is a threat to everybody in the region, and ISIL is something we’re going to have to deal with no matter what happens in Iraq, and others are going to have to deal with – recognizing that, we still know that unless there is a coming together and elimination of the mistrust and addressing of the sense of isolation of different segments of Iraqi society, unless people are brought together in order to try to bring the country together, it’s going to be – there is no single military solution.

So it is absolutely vital that the government formation process that is now underway be effected as rapidly as possible.  The people of Iraq had an election.  They’ve made their choices.  And they’ve – they have a parliamentary system with factions coming together to choose a prime minister and choose a government.  That process has to be played out as rapidly as possible so the security of Iraq is determined by Iraqis.  And that will be the greatest single step taken to have an impact on the outcome of this current conflict. 

Meanwhile, the United States recognizes that ISIL is a vicious terrorist organization with a proven agenda of violence, and its expressed aim is to take territory and terrorize the Iraqi people, regardless of sect.  So the only way to fight ISIL is through strong coordination by Iraqi leaders across the full spectrum of Iraqi society and with the support of the surrounding nations.

The next days will decide whether or not that is the direction chosen, but it is really in the hands of Iraqis to determine their future, and we will do everything in our power to keep faith with our soldiers who expended so much in the effort to provide Iraqis with exactly this kind of a choice.  But it is truly up to the leaders now to make those choices, and we’ll do everything we can to encourage it.

QUESTION:  And on Syria?  The support to the FSA that they’re specifically asking for to battle ISIS, are we any closer to delivering that?

SECRETARY KERRY:  Well, we are – we – President Obama has over the last months made a series of decisions that provide additional assistance to the opposition in Syria.  We are currently providing humanitarian assistance; the greatest single amount of humanitarian aid to Syria comes from the United States.  We are in addition providing military assistance, humanitarian assistance, and we have, I think, increased our efforts with respect to our input to the opposition in Syria way beyond where it was one month ago or even two months ago or four months ago.  This has been a progressive increase, and we are quite confident that there is increased capacity at this moment. 

So again, ISIL is a freestanding effort.  It is not linked to the – directly to the Assad regime, obviously, except to the degree that it originally came there to fight against them.  But they obviously have broader ambitions and they have proven themselves to be violent to the degree that even al-Qaida divorced themselves from them.  They are a threat to every country in the region, and the President has made it clear that we are going to do what we need to do to stand up against the possibility of a jihad threat that actually reaches out beyond and may even threaten the United States ultimately. 

MS. PSAKI:  The next question will be from Tracy Watkins of the Dominion Post.

QUESTION:  Mr. Secretary, can I just ask you, given that you did discuss Iraq in your meeting, what kind of support are you expecting from New Zealand, and does that include practical or moral backing for today’s announcements in any future --

SECRETARY KERRY:  I’m sorry, I missed the part about the moral.  Could you just give me that again?

QUESTION:  Practical, or are you sort of – what sort of practical or moral support are you expecting for the actions that have been announced?

SECRETARY KERRY:  Well, this is not about – I mean, I think the President made it clear that we are committed to try to help Iraq, and that statement alone is moral support.  The fact that he is asking me, sending me to go on behalf of our country and his policy to engage with the region is moral support.  The fact that we are sending troops to be involved in a joint operations command in two locations and to help assess their capacity is more than moral support.  That’s physical, real support that can have a difference. 

Now, is that going to be the difference in stemming the tide with ISIL?  It’s not meant to be.  It’s mean to give the President the best assessment possible so that whatever choices the President makes or has to make as we go down the road are based on facts, are based on real possibilities, not a wing and a prayer.  And I think the President is wise to try to come at this in a careful, thoughtful way, given all of the mistakes that have been made historically with respect to the decisions in that region.

QUESTION:  So then are you seeking that moral and – moral support from friends and partners like New Zealand for your actions here?

SECRETARY KERRY:  Well, we hope.  I mean, yes, the answer is we welcome all the support there is in the world for rule of law, for a peaceful resolution rather than terrorism and conflict.  And we know that our friends – we don’t have to ask.  This is one where we know that New Zealand stands with us, and I’ll let the prime minister speak for himself. 

QUESTION:  And is there any practical support that could be provided as well?

SECRETARY KERRY:  Well, that’s part of the assessment and that’s part of what we need to determine, which is why I’m going to be talking with our friends in Europe.  I’ll be at the NATO ministerial in Brussels next week.  I’ll be seeing all of our friends and allies within NATO as well as discussing this with Gulf states and others.  And so we’ll get a much better sense of exactly what – how people see it, how they determine and define the best strategy, what they see as the best road forward for all of us to embrace, and what they’re willing to do.  And all of those things will come out in the course of those meetings. 

Mr. Prime Minister, do you want to --

QUESTION:  You mentioned before that the terrorism threat could expand beyond Iraq into the United States.  Does that include the Western world as well?  Do you think --

SECRETARY KERRY:  Yes.

QUESTION:  (Inaudible.)

SECRETARY KERRY:  Yes, yes.

QUESTION:  Why is that?

SECRETARY KERRY:  Well, why is that?  It is because they have already threatened the rest of the Western world.  It is because there are, regrettably, people from many different parts of the world, including Asia, the United States, Europe, and other places who have chosen to go do jihad in Syria.

QUESTION:  But that includes New Zealand as well?

SECRETARY KERRY:  Well, I’ll let the prime minister speak to that.  I know there are some from Australia.  I don’t know specifically about New Zealand.  But there are people from the Asian Pacific arena who have chosen to go to Iraq.  There are a lot of people from North Africa, a lot of people from Europe, and some from the United States that we know specifically are fighting jihad in Syria against Assad.  The young person who was wrapped in a flag in Brussels the other day who shot four people at a synagogue had been fighting in Syria.  We know specifically of those threats and we know specifically of the concerns of many countries about foreign fighters who will choose to come home and continue their struggles in other ways. 

So this is a risk.  It’s not something we’re trying to exaggerate; it’s not something we want to blow up.  But given where we have been from September of 2001 and given what we know day to day in our intelligence communities, we know that this has to be taken seriously.  And the President does take it very, very seriously.

We also know what these people talk about and what they put out on their websites and what they are promising their followers.  And so we need to be vigilant and concerned and engaged, and that’s what the President is.

QUESTION:  (Off-mike.)

SECRETARY KERRY:  Let me let the prime minister – can I let the prime minister answer a question?

MS. PSAKI:  I’m sorry, we’re going to have to wrap this up, but let’s let the prime minister take --

PRIME MINISTER KEY:  Sure.

SECRETARY KERRY:  Yeah.

PRIME MINISTER KEY:  I mean, look, we are fully supportive of what is clear from the President, which is a very careful and considered process for assessing what is best in terms of the next steps for Iraq.  And from New Zealand’s point of view, we can lend a hand in there as we can sense we make a difference.  And today the foreign minister has announced we’re giving UNHCR half a million dollars in humanitarian support.  That’s the kinds of things that can make a difference.

QUESTION:  So prime minister, what about --

MS. PSAKI:  I’m sorry --

QUESTION:  What about moral backing, moral or practical backing of what the United States has announced today on military action in the future?  Will you give that backing?

PRIME MINISTER KEY:  Well, I don’t think the United States is seriously anywhere near that step at this point.  I mean, what the President has made clear, if I understand it completely, is that he’s sending in some military people to look at the capability on the ground.  The United States is standing up against a terrorist threat, and it’s trying to protect the innocent people of Iraq.  And of course we support those actions 100 percent.  But I don’t think anyone’s talking about a re-engagement of a war.  I mean, the President’s made that pretty clear.

MS. PSAKI:  Thank you, everyone.

SECRETARY KERRY:  Thank you all very much.  Thank you.

SECRETARY KERRY'S REMARKS AT PACIFIC DAY POLICY SEMINAR

FROM:  THE STATE DEPARTMENT 

Remarks at Pacific Day Policy Seminar

Remarks
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Embassy of New Zealand
Washington, DC
June 18, 2014


I’m going for the whole thing.  Sorry about that, folks.  Well, good evening, everybody.  How are you all?  Everybody good?  What a fantastic evening, and it’s a great, great pleasure for me to be able to come over here and share Pacific Day.  Tonight, we celebrate – obviously or this evening, I can still say – the critical relationships that unites all of the nations of the Pacific.  And believe me, in the last few days at our conference, we’ve seen the power of how united the Pacific region is.
So we thank you because these partnerships were born out of a world that put us together geographically because we border on the Pacific, but it has also put us together because we have weathered wars and we have developed together and built a shared prosperity.

So I want to thank Palau’s ambassador, Hersey Kyota, who invited me to come speak.  I particularly want to thank New Zealand’s Ambassador, Michael Moore, for hosting us.  I think we all want to join together in saying thank you for his willingness us to do that.  (Applause.)  Oh, where is he?  Hiding?  (Applause.)

I want to recognize New Zealand’s prime minister who is here – he’s hiding over here, right here – John Key.  Thank you so much, Mr. Prime Minister.  It’s an honor to be here.  (Applause.)  And I’m going to be meeting with him tomorrow, where we can discuss some of the issues that we’ll talk about here. 

I also am honored to be here with the president of Palau, Tommy Remengesau.  And we also met.  We had a wonderful opportunity to talk about a host of issues, but most importantly the way in which island nations are deeply threatened by climate change, rising sea levels, acidification, overfishing.  And all of these were the topics of the conference that we just had in the last few days.

I want to just emphasize to everybody, America thinks of itself as a Pacific nation and is a Pacific nation proudly.  We don’t just border it and have an extraordinary coastline framing the Pacific, but we have been in the Pacific and in its far reaches for centuries.  We also obviously went through an extraordinarily difficult period during World War II.  We shed a lot of blood in the Pacific and fought hard for the ability of Pacific nations to be free to determine their own future and certainly to be able to associate and come together to protect the freedom of navigation, the freedom of commerce, and our rights as human beings.

And one of those rights is the right to be free from pollution that literally threatens nations.  That is why President Obama made the strategic decision in the first term, to do what has become known as a rebalance or pivot, but I prefer a rebalance, because pivot implies we’re somehow turning away from something else and we’re not.  But we’re rebalancing so that we make certain that some people in the Pacific understand our commitment and can rely on the presence of the United States with respect to many of those issues that I just talked about. 

President Obama is absolutely committed to continuing to make certain that everybody understands this rebalance is not a passing fancy, it’s not a momentary thing, and in fact it has grown.  We recently renegotiated a long-term defense pact with Japan.  We have reaffirmed our relationship with South Korea.  We have, obviously, with ASEAN and our presence in Southeast Asia as well as throughout the islands and the nations southwards to New Zealand and Australia, we’ve strengthened our presence there.  And we are continuing and we will continue, I can guarantee you, to work to impress on people that the values that bring us together don’t belong to one country.  They don’t belong to one nation.  I would tell you that I think they are genuinely universal values, and they certainly don’t belong to any ideology. 

There are a huge number of issues that Pacific nations have to wrestle with as a community now, and we all have a stake in regional stability and security.  The right to choose one’s own government, as I said, we believe is a birthright.  Economic growth is imperative for all of us.  But one thing above all looms as a threat, literally, to existence, and that is the connective tissue that holds – that connects all of us with respect to the environment and our responsibility to the ocean itself.

We just had two days of a conference in which speaker after speaker, film after film, expert after expert, scientist after scientist documented the degree to which we, mankind, are threatening ourselves as a consequence of the amount of carbon dioxide we are releasing into the atmosphere, as a result of too much money chasing too few fish, as a result of the devastating impact of pollution, run-off from development that streams out of rivers and down into the ocean so that we have over 500 dead zones.  And we can unfortunately boast a big one in the Gulf of Mexico where, coming out of the Mississippi River, from the various rivers that feed into it along the way, all the way from the northern part of our country down into the south.  We have runoff from agriculture, which overloads nitrates which kills the ecosystem. 

This is happening, unfortunately, everywhere.  The numbers of birds and fish that are found imbibing plastic, which has a 450-year life, therefore, obviously, a killer for many fowl and fish.  We face an extraordinary challenge to our fishing stocks almost everywhere:  some depleted, some stocks so low that they’re almost extinct, and in some places fisheries that are fished to the level that they’re near the possibility of collapse.

So all of what I’ve just said is obviously an enormous challenge and probably some of you could walk away tonight and say, “Boy, I hate to hear all those facts because I don’t know what I can do about it.”  Well, the problem is solvable.  What is shocking to me, and I think to many of us who are engaged in this effort, is the fact that it’s not something we can’t do something about.  The solutions are staring us in the face.  The solution to climate change, which we have to embrace rapidly because of the rate and pace at which coal-fired power plants are still being built – the solution is energy policy. 

And we have brave innovators and entrepreneurs who are on the cutting edge of producing alternative and renewable capacity to produce the energy that we need.  Whether it’s solar or wind or biomass or other forms, or even – some people say God perish the thought because of what happened in Japan, but if you don’t build on an earthquake fault and right next to the ocean, nuclear does have the ability, as we’ve seen in so many places, from France to the United States Navy, where we haven’t lost one sailor in more than 70 years of the use of nuclear power, or had one accident on a ship.  It is, because it is zero emissions, one of the alternatives we’re going to have to use.  And I’m confident that our scientists, as we do, will find the ways to create a fuel cycle that is unified and we can deal with the waste, and clearly we have safer and greater capacity in fourth-generation modular units. 

So the solutions are there.  And I just want to – I want to leave you with just one thought, a big thought about this, which is what excites me and why I’m banging away at this.  We’ve got to move rapidly if we’re going to save some of those island.  We have to be able to turn this around, and that means we’re going to have to embrace very forward-leaning policies very quickly.  And next year in Paris, in December, we will meet – all of our nations of the world – in order to try to set targets in order to be able to do what I just talked about.

But let me just tell you something.  We could produce – we’re not about to, but we could produce three times the entire electricity needs of the United States of America well into the future from 100 square miles down in the New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona region.  You could do it if you decided to.  We could do solar-thermal, we could do other things, but we have to build the infrastructure to do these kinds of things.  We have to invest in it.  And that is true all around the world where people have yet to embrace the simplest forms of energy efficiency, where we could be making a different set of choices about how you price carbon and what you do.

The bottom line is this:  The marketplace that made America richer than it ever imagined in the 1990s was a $1 trillion market with four – with what, 1 billion users.  One and one; $1 trillion market, 1 billion users.  Every single income earner in America, every quintile of our percentage of taxpayers, from the bottom 20 percent to the top, saw their incomes go up during the course of the 1990s.  We created more wealth in America because of one sector of our economy, the technology sector, that boomed, and it provided goods to those 1 billion people and became a $1 trillion market. 

Well, guess what?  The energy market that I am talking about today, as you look at it, is a $6 trillion market with 4 to 5 billion users, and it’s going to go up to 9 billion users by 2050.  It’s the mother of all markets.  It’s the greatest opportunity to build infrastructure, build power plants that are clean, build windmills, build alternatives, to have a whole new restructuring of the goods and services that are provided to people that provide the energy of the world.  And given the fact that almost half of the world still lives on about $2 a day and a huge percentage on $1 a day, the capacity for this development to change lives, save lives, reduce conflict, have an impact on security, change our ability to dream about a different kind of future is absolutely extraordinary.

So it’s a beautiful evening, you came here to have fun, I don’t want to go on and on tonight, but I’m just telling you, there is a solution staring us in the face, and the Pacific region, the Pacific islands can help to underscore to people what is really at stake.  It’s called life itself.  And the irony, the horrible fact is those nations most threatened are those nations least contributing to this problem.  So the developed world has an obligation to make this happen, and I look forward to working with our Kiwi friends and others and all of the Pacific islands.  We’re going to get this job done.  Thank you for Pacific Day.  Thank you for welcoming me here today.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)

WHITE HOUSE PRESS CALL ON SOUTHWEST BORDER ENFORCEMENT

FROM:  THE WHITE HOUSE 

Press Call on Efforts to Enhance Enforcement on the Southwest Border

Via Conference Call
12:35 P.M. EDT

MS. VARGAS:  Thank you, everybody, for participating today. This call is on the record and without embargo.  You should also have received from the White House more information, including a factsheet from the Vice President’s trip to Guatemala and actions that we're seeking to address the flow of immigration.

So without further ado, we have Cecilia Muñoz, who is the Director of Domestic Policy Council of the White House.

Cecilia.

MS. MUŇOZ:  Thank you very much, Katherine.  Thanks to everybody for taking time to be on this call.  I'm actually on a cellphone in McCallum so I hope you can hear me.

So as folks know, we have been dealing with a surge of unaccompanied children.  And several weeks ago, the President asked DHS and the DHS Secretary, who, in turn, asked Administrator Fugate to coordinate the efforts across the federal government.  I’ve just witnessed those efforts in action, and this is an extraordinary interagency effort to deal with an urgent humanitarian situation.  And so that process is well underway.

We are also dealing with, in addition to unaccompanied children entering, and of course there are adults coming and adults who are bringing children who are also part of this surge coming from these three countries in Central America -- Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras.  And so we are surging our enforcement resources in a way that my colleagues will describe in a moment to make sure that we are dealing properly with this particular surge.

Part of that is the Vice President’s trip to Guatemala today where he is meeting with officials, again, from those three -- leaders from those three countries, as well as from Mexico, to outline ways in which we will be working together to deal with this problem at its source, to make sure that we're doing everything possible both to support countries in stemming the tide of this migration, but also to deal with the misinformation that is being deliberately planted by criminal organizations, by smuggling networks, about what people can expect if they come to the United States.  That is misinformation that is being promulgated and put forward in a very deliberate way.  And part of what the Vice President’s effort as well as the administration effort overall is to make sure that people have accurate information and that we push back on the misinformation that is being spread and which is contributing to this problem.

MS. VARGAS:  Thank you, Cecilia.  And we're going to hear more about the specific steps that DHS will be doing in terms of enforcement resources.  We have on the line the Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas.

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  Thank you very much, Katherine.

In light of the scale and the number of certain migrants from Central America, we at the Department of Homeland Security and our partners in the Department of Justice are taking additional steps to enhance our enforcement and removal proceedings.  We are surging resources to increase our capacity to detain individuals and adults with children, and to handle immigration court hearings.  This will allow Immigration and Customs Enforcement -- or ICE -- to return unlawful migrants from Central America who are ordered removed to their home countries more quickly.

And let me, if I can, cite some specific steps we are taking.  First, additional immigration judges, ICE attorneys and asylum officers are being assigned to process cases of adult migrants traveling by themselves, apprehended at the border, who are claiming credible fear and are claiming eligibility to apply for -- to attain asylum.  When an individual’s case is fully heard and it is found that the individual does not qualify for asylum, he or she will be immediately removed.  Many individuals from Central America are found to be ineligible for these forms of protections and are, in fact, promptly removed.

Second, and consistent with our enforcement priorities regarding recent border crossers, the Department of Homeland Security is actively working to secure additional space to detain adults with children apprehended crossing the border.  We will work to ensure, of course, that the detention of adults with children is done as humanely as possible and in an appropriate setting that meets applicable legal standards.  We are also using alternatives to detention programs for adults with children that are not physically detained.  With very few exceptions, all individuals apprehended, including adults with children, are placed in removal proceedings.

Third and finally, once additional facilities are established to detain adults with children apprehended while crossing the border, we and the Department of Justice will deploy an additional surge of immigration judges, ICE attorneys, and asylum officers to focus on these cases.  The surge resources will ensure that the cases are processed both fairly and as quickly as possible, ensuring the protection of asylum seekers while enabling us to promptly remove individuals in appropriate cases.

Thank you, Katherine.

MS. VARGAS:  Thank you.  I also want to remind you that Secretary Johnson is with Cecilia and representatives from the Department of Justice and FEMA at the Rio Grande Valley today.

Now we're going to hear more about our work with our partners in the Central American governments, and I'm here with Ricardo Zuñiga, the Senior Director for Western Hemisphere Affairs in the National Security Council.

MR. ZUŇIGA:  Thank you very much, Katherine.

So you’ll the factsheets related to the specific assistance and cooperation that we're going to be providing in Central America, but I wanted to touch on a couple of key points.  First is that we've been working with the governments in Guatemala and El Salvador and Honduras, as well as with the Mexican government, from the beginning of this increase in migration.  And in all cases, what we've found is a high level of interest in working with us because they understand the humanitarian nature of what it is that we're trying to do and the fact that we're all interested, first and foremost, in preventing the dangerous migration of children, particularly as we've seen an increase in children under 12 years of age.  They all have an interest in making sure that their citizens are well cared for.

So the Vice President is meeting today with the Presidents of El Salvador and Guatemala, meeting with a senior official from the government of Honduras, and the Mexican government is participating as well.  Yesterday, President Obama met -- excuse me -- called President Peña Nieto of Mexico to discuss our shared responsibility in dealing with this matter and there, again, found a high level of interest in working with us to address the humanitarian nature of this phenomenon, and as well, to encourage safe, orderly and legal migration.  And again, that is something that all the governments have committed to.

I just want to highlight a couple of items from our foreign assistance that are going to be directed towards Central America to help us deal with this immediate situation.  I'll note that the U.S. government is going to be providing $9.6 million in support for El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras to invest in their repatriation centers so that as people are being removed they have someplace they can orderly land and then be processed back home.

In Guatemala, we're launching a new $40 million U.S. Agency for International Development program to improve citizen security in the areas that are most affected by violence.  In El Salvador, we're launching a $25 million crime prevention USAID program to establish 77 youth centers, youth outreach centers, in addition to the 30 that we already have in place.  And this is in the context of a substantial amount of assistance that we've provided under the Central American Regional Security Initiative and, as well, as we've provided under other types of assistance -- about $130 million in other forms of bilateral assistance to those three countries for programs related to health, education and to promote economic growth.
Thanks, Katherine.

MS. VARGAS:  Thank you very much, Ricardo.

And then let’s open up for questions.  I know the time is limited, but I just want to make sure that folks know that this is being recorded.

Q    I actually have a few questions.  What sort of bed space capacity are we talking about?  Currently, there’s fewer than 100 beds.  But, additionally, how many people this fiscal year have been released with notices to appear and how many of those folks have actually appeared?

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  I can take that call.  We are actively pursuing additional capacity to house the adults with children.  We're underway in that process now and we are identifying locations.  We will get back to you with respect to the precise numbers on the notices to appear.  But let me make one very important point, and that is that our detention and notice-to-appear decisions are made on a case-by-case basis, and of course, our detention decisions are predicated on an assessment of our prioritization, including at the very top our national security and public safety concerns.

Q    Thank you for taking my question.  I have several, but I'll just keep it down to two.  I'm just wondering if you could give us a sense of what you guys are doing to pursue the coyotes that are bringing these kids in.  A lot of the kids that are in those detention centers say that they paid coyotes to bring them in, so I'm wondering if you have any sense of whether or not you're pursuing them criminally and, if so, what are the results of that, and whether or not these kids are getting access to legal assistance to make their cases for asylum.  Thank you.

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  Thank you very much.  So we are, indeed, surging our law enforcement resources to address -- to attack the criminal organizations that are exploiting these individuals, and we are pursuing them in the criminal enforcement arena.  So we are adding agents to this very aggressive effort.

Q    I'd like to know what you're going to do to try to publicize this new enforcement approach in the region, since you're acknowledging that people have a different view there.  And I want to follow up on AP’s question.  You said that we’ll get back to you on the numbers.  Does that mean that you'll get back to us today?  In the past, you haven't been willing or able to produce any numbers, and I'm also interested in knowing how many people have been -- certainly the first part -- released with a notice to appear.

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  Well, I think we have, if I may, provided some numbers, and I'm happy to repeat those numbers now. As of June 15, approximately 52,000 unaccompanied children have been apprehended along the Southwest border.  That I think is, of course, a very important data point.  And as of the end of May of this fiscal year, approximately 39,000 adults with children have been apprehended along the Southwest border.  I think those are two very significant and germane data points for you.

I'm sorry, you asked a different question other than data -- what are we doing, I think it was, to publicize the additional steps that we are taking.  As Cecilia mentioned, in addition to the effort that we are making now, of course, the Vice President is in-country today and communicating this very important message.  We also are communicating this message both domestically here in the United States through various channels, as well as in the countries of origin.

MR. ZUŇIGA:  Let me just jump in there.  Making sure this is well understood and that the facts around U.S. immigration policy are well understood is the main factor behind having the Vice President meet with the Presidents in those three Central American countries today.  Our embassies in those countries are also undertaking public messaging and the governments themselves are making clear to their own publics that people who travel -- that minors who travel under this current migration are not going to be eligible for deferred action, nor will they be benefiting from any comprehensive immigration reform.

Q    Thanks for taking my question.  This question is for Deputy Secretary Mayorkas.  This has been some reports for the plans by DHS to move some of these minors to a vacant facility in Virginia that has been put on hold because (inaudible) in that town are opposed to this movement.  So the question is what is going to happen in this particular instance?  And also, the site that these people are opposed -- I wonder how that is going to complicate your efforts to look for additional space to accommodate these children.

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  I appreciate the question.  As I mentioned earlier, we are actively and aggressively pursuing additional facilities.  We have not made final determination on which particular facilities we will select.  There are a number of considerations including those that can be ready in the quickest possible way while complying with the legal requirements and with respect to the conditions in which the individuals will be housed, including adults with children.  And so we will, in fact, announce additional locations as those decisions are made.

Q    A couple questions on this.  First of all, how many of those released with a notice to appear actually do appear?  Why are you not using -- we're told by the Border Patrol agents down there in the region that as soon as a year ago you were using planes to send both mothers with children and children back to their home countries.  Instead of housing them here, you were sending them back like you do minors from Mexico.  And since judges must consider the percentage -- must consider what’s best for the child, what’s the percentage of minors who are actually returned to their country even after they go through the system?

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  So as I articulated previously, I don't have the response to the data question that you asked with respect to the notices to appear.  But there’s a very important point here, that we continue to remove individuals to the countries of origin in compliance with law and those removals are accomplished via flights, as they have been conducted over the past year to which you refer.  That process continues.

Q    Speaker Boehner, just this morning, and other Republicans have called for the National Guard to be sent in.  Is this under any consideration by the administration at this moment?

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  Right now what we are doing is
-- remember that we are apprehending these individuals, and so the question before us is how can we make the process more efficient, given the surge in the number of individuals who are being apprehended, and how best can we address those individuals in terms of their humanitarian claims of relief, as well as the removal for those who are not claiming credible fear.  So that is not a process in which the National Guard is involved.  It is something that comes within our appropriate jurisdiction and responsibility between the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice.

We, of course, just received the letter from Speaker Boehner and others and we'll review it right away to understand how they envision the role of the National Guard outside the process to which I just referred.

Q    My question is we had heard that -- this is to the question about the facilities where these families will be held. We had heard that military bases were being lined up as potential sites and that one was ready to be opened.  Is that true?  Are military bases either in line or are you considering them?  And advocates have expressed concerns that families would be housed there.  Can you speak to how they would be humanely detained at military bases?

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  Thank you for the question.  We have not made any final determination with respect to the particular facilities at which adults with children would be housed.  But one thing is certain, that we will house them in facilities that are humane and that are compliant with the legal requirements for the housing of these individuals.

Q    On the numbers you had earlier about unaccompanied children apprehended on the Southwest border, you said as of June 15, 52,000; at the end of May, 39,000 adults.  Is that in the fiscal year -- both of those numbers are since last October 1st? Or what do those numbers -- since when -- when to when?

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  They are fiscal year 2014.  But let me be clear, if I may, on the second category, and I'll just repeat -- it was 52,000 unaccompanied children as of June 15 in fiscal year 2014, and 39,000 adults with children as of the end of May.  And that, too, is fiscal year 2014.

Q    So since last October?

DEPUTY SECRETARY MAYORKAS:  Yes.

Q    Thank you.

MS. VARGAS:  And thank you, everybody, for your participation.

END
12:58 P.M. EDT

Friday, June 20, 2014

WHITE HOUSE FACT SHEET ON CHILDREN CROSSING ALONE INTO UNITED STATES

FROM:  THE WHITE HOUSE 

FACT SHEET: Unaccompanied Children from Central America

The Administration remains greatly concerned by the rise in unaccompanied children from Central America who are crossing into the United States. These children are some of the most vulnerable, and many become victims of violent crime or sexual abuse along the dangerous journey. There has also been a rise in the number of very young children, female children, and adults with their children that are making the journey. The vast majority of these individuals rely on dangerous human smuggling networks to transport them up through Central America and Mexico. 
To address the situation, the President directed the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate a government-wide response to this urgent situation. Our first priority is to manage the urgent humanitarian situation by making sure these children are housed, fed, and receive any necessary medical treatment. We also are taking steps to improve enforcement and partnering with our Central American counterparts in three key areas: combating gang violence and strengthening citizen security, spurring economic development, and improving capacity to receive and reintegrate returned families and children.
In Guatemala, the Vice President is meeting with regional leaders to address the rise in the flow of unaccompanied children and adults with their children to the United States, to discuss our work together with the countries of Central America, and to discuss our efforts to help address the underlying security and economic issues that cause migration.
Partnering with Central America and Mexico
New Programs
  • The U.S. Government will be providing $9.6 million in additional support for Central American governments to receive and reintegrate their repatriated citizens. This funding will enable El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras to make substantial investments in their existing repatriation centers, provide training to immigration officials on migrant care, and increase the capacity of these governments and non-governmental organizations to provide expanded services to returned migrants. 
  • In Guatemala, we are launching a new $40-million U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) program over 5 years to improve citizen security. This program will work in some of the most violent communities to reduce the risk factors for youth involvement in gangs and address factors driving migration to the United States.
  • In El Salvador, we are initiating a new $25-million Crime and Violence Prevention USAID program over 5 years that will establish 77 youth outreach centers in addition to the 30 already in existence. These will continue to offer services to at-risk youth who are susceptible to gang recruitment and potential migration.
  • In Honduras, under the Central American Regional Security Initiative (CARSI), we will provide $18.5 million to support community policing and law enforcement efforts to confront gangs and other sources of crime. In addition, USAID will build on an existing initiative to support 40 youth outreach centers by soon announcing a substantial new Crime and Violence Prevention program to further address root causes.
  • USAID is calling for proposals to support new public-private partnerships through the Global Development Alliance to increase economic and educational opportunities for at risk youth in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.
  • The United States also plans to provide $161.5 million this year for CARSI programs that are critical to enabling Central American countries to respond to the region’s most pressing security and governance challenges. Our assistance will help stem migration flows as well as address root cause of the migration. This assistance will include:
    • Approximately $65 million for Rule of Law, Human Rights and Transparency programs, including activities to prevent at-risk youth from joining gangs and encourage their involvement in community crime prevention efforts and programs to expand education and job training.
    • Another approximately $96.5 million will go toward peace, security, stabilization, and other related rule of law programs to strengthen immigration, law enforcement, and judicial authorities and promote anti-gang and human rights programs.
Ongoing Programs
  • The United States is providing almost $130 million in ongoing bilateral assistance to El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala for a variety of programs related to health, education, climate change, economic growth, military cooperation, and democracy assistance.   
  • We are collaborating on campaigns to help potential migrants understand the significant danger of relying on human smuggling networks and to reinforce that recently arriving children and individuals are not eligible for programs like Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, commonly called DACA, and earned citizenship provisions in comprehensive immigration reform currently under consideration in the Congress. 
Increased Enforcement
  • The Department of Justice and DHS are taking additional steps to enhance enforcement and removal proceedings. We are surging government enforcement resources to increase our capacity to detain individuals and adults who bring their children with them and to handle immigration court hearings – in cases where hearings are necessary – as quickly and efficiently as possible while also while also protecting those who are seeking asylum. That will allow ICE to return unlawful migrants from Central America to their home countries more quickly.
  • These new measures build on a strong existing record of enforcement and removal of Central Americans entering the country unlawfully. In FY 2013, ICE removed 47,769 individuals from Guatemala, 37,049 from Honduras, and 21,602 from El Salvador. This represents approximately 29% of all ICE removals.
  • The Vice President will reiterate that unaccompanied children and adults arriving with their children are not eligible to benefit from the passage of immigration reform legislation or from the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) process.

SECRETARY KERRY'S PRESS STATEMENT ON WORLD REFUGEE DAY

FROM:  U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT 

Commemorating World Refugee Day

Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
June 20, 2014


World Refugee Day is more than a moment marked on a calendar. It is a time to honor the strength and resilience of refugees around the world and renew our determination to support them as they rebuild their lives and communities. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees now counts the number of refugees, asylum-seekers, and internally displaced persons at 51 million. That number is staggering by any measure. It represents children, women, and men from Syria, South Sudan, the Central African Republic, and now Iraq, who face death, destruction, and dislocation. For them, daily survival is a gamble.

The dreams refugees harbor have special meaning for Americans. Even before our land was a nation, America was a haven for those seeking freedom from persecution, hunger, oppression and war. Today, refugees continue to look to America for relief and opportunity. These refugees, many of whom arrive having lost everything, become some of the most resilient, entrepreneurial, and devoted citizens we have.

When I visited the UN’s Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan last year, I saw firsthand the value and importance of our work. Hundreds of thousands of Syrians – many women and children – live there in suspended animation, waiting for the opportunity to rebuild their lives. I met with some of the camp’s many residents. Their needs were simple: food, shelter, stability. But most of all, they want to live their lives with the dignity and respect that all people deserve.

That’s why I’m proud that the United States is the largest donor to humanitarian relief worldwide. Our humanitarian assistance has saved lives and eased suffering for 4.7 million people inside Syria and more than 2.8 million refugees in neighboring countries. We have also recently announced nearly $300 million in additional humanitarian assistance to help the people affected by the conflict in South Sudan. Beyond just dollars and programs, our efforts are assisting millions who have fled conflict and persecution in the Central African Republic, Burma, Afghanistan, and many other places around the world.

World Refugee Day is more than a moment marked on a calendar. It is a time to honor the strength and resilience of refugees around the world and renew our determination to support them as they rebuild their lives and communities. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees now counts the number of refugees, asylum-seekers, and internally displaced persons at 51 million. That number is staggering by any measure. It represents children, women, and men from Syria, South Sudan, the Central African Republic, and now Iraq, who face death, destruction, and dislocation. For them, daily survival is a gamble.

The dreams refugees harbor have special meaning for Americans. Even before our land was a nation, America was a haven for those seeking freedom from persecution, hunger, oppression and war. Today, refugees continue to look to America for relief and opportunity. These refugees, many of whom arrive having lost everything, become some of the most resilient, entrepreneurial, and devoted citizens we have.

When I visited the UN’s Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan last year, I saw firsthand the value and importance of our work. Hundreds of thousands of Syrians – many women and children – live there in suspended animation, waiting for the opportunity to rebuild their lives. I met with some of the camp’s many residents. Their needs were simple: food, shelter, stability. But most of all, they want to live their lives with the dignity and respect that all people deserve.

That’s why I’m proud that the United States is the largest donor to humanitarian relief worldwide. Our humanitarian assistance has saved lives and eased suffering for 4.7 million people inside Syria and more than 2.8 million refugees in neighboring countries. We have also recently announced nearly $300 million in additional humanitarian assistance to help the people affected by the conflict in South Sudan. Beyond just dollars and programs, our efforts are assisting millions who have fled conflict and persecution in the Central African Republic, Burma, Afghanistan, and many other places around the world.

I’m especially proud that the United States welcomes the most refugees to our shores every year. Nearly 70,000 refugees from 65 nations found a new home in in the United States last year. We expect to admit just as many in 2014.

The losses refugees suffer, the journeys they make, and the commitment they put into rebuilding their lives are remarkable. Today of all days, we salute their courage and resilience. We pay tribute to the generosity of countries that give them refuge. And we applaud the compassion of communities and organizations the world over that lend a helping hand.

I’m especially proud that the United States welcomes the most refugees to our shores every year. Nearly 70,000 refugees from 65 nations found a new home in in the United States last year. We expect to admit just as many in 2014.

The losses refugees suffer, the journeys they make, and the commitment they put into rebuilding their lives are remarkable. Today of all days, we salute their courage and resilience. We pay tribute to the generosity of countries that give them refuge. And we applaud the compassion of communities and organizations the world over that lend a helping hand.

U.S. SENDS BEST WISHES TO PEOPLE OF LUXEMBOURG ON THEIR NATIONAL DAY

FROM:  U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT 
On the Occasion of National Day in Luxembourg
Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
June 20, 2014

On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I am delighted to send best wishes to Grand Duke Henri and the people of Luxembourg as you celebrate your National Day on June 23.

The United States and Luxembourg share a long history. This year, as we commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge, we remember the bravery of both our nations in World War II. Many Americans heard the call of duty then, including my father who served in the U.S. Army Air Corps and my mother who treated the sick and wounded in France. Luxembourg heard that same call, and paid the price of war with occupation. But in the end, American and Luxembourger forces fought side-by-side and struck a blow for freedom and democracy everywhere. Today, we remember all those who gave their lives, including the more than 5,000 American troops laid to rest in Luxembourg.

Decades ago, we fought together, so today we can work together. We value the close cooperation our two countries enjoy on the UN Security Council and at NATO, where every day we continue the important work of advancing democracy, peace, and prosperity for all of the world’s citizens.

So as the cannons salute and the fireworks commence on your National Day, know that the United States stands with you as a close partner and friend. We wish all Luxembourgers a happy and prosperous year.

U.S. DEFENSE DEPARTMENT CONTRACTS FOR JUNE 20, 2014

FROM:  U.S. DEFENSE DEPARTMENT 

CONTRACTS

NAVY

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., Stratford, Connecticut, is being awarded $115,705,556 for firm-fixed-price delivery order 4019 against a previously issued Basic Ordering Agreement (N00019-14-G-0004). This order provides for non-recurring engineering and program support for the production and delivery of nine MH-60R aircraft for the Danish Defense Acquisition and Logistics Organization under the Foreign Military Sales program. Work will be performed in Stratford, Connecticut (52 percent); West Palm Beach, Florida (22 percent) and various locations outside the continental United States (17 percent), and within the continental United States (9 percent); work is expected to be completed in July 2018. FMS funds in the amount of $115,587,382 will be obligated at time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

Bell Helicopter Textron Inc., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $44,667,969 modification to definitize a previously awarded undefinitized contract action (N00383-14-D-015N) to a cost- plus- fixed- fee price contract. This contract provides for the repair of various parts for the UH-1Y and AH-1Z Upgrade Helicopters. Work will be performed in Hurst, Texas, and work is expected to be completed by January 2017. No funds will be obligated at the time of award and contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Fiscal 2014 working capital funds (Navy) will be used on individual delivery orders as they are issued. This contract was a non-competitive requirement in accordance with 10 U.S.C. 2304 (c)(1). NAVSUP Weapon Systems Support, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is the contracting activity.

Tetrad Digital Integrity, Washington, District of Columbia, is being awarded a $7,801,515 modification under a previously awarded indefinite-quantity/indefinite-delivery contract (N00033-12-D-6505) to exercise a one-year option for information technology services related to information assurance, mobile communication assets, shipboard electronic support and communication security support. Work will be performed worldwide, and is expected to be completed by June 2015. No funds will be obligated at the time of award, and funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command, Washington, District of Columbia, is the contracting activity (N00033-12-D-6505).

Systems Technology Forum Limited, Fredericksburg, Virginia, is being awarded a $7,386,653 modification under a previously awarded indefinite-
quantity/indefinite-delivery contract (N00033-12-D-6503) to exercise a one-year option for information technology services related to information assurance, mobile communication assets, shipboard electronic support and communication security support. Work will be performed worldwide, and is expected to be completed by June 2015. No funds will be obligated at the time of award, and funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command, Washington, District of Columbia, is the contracting activity (N00033-12-D-6503).

Syzygy Technologies, Inc., San Diego, California, is being awarded a $7,077,042 modification under a previously awarded indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract (N00033-12-D-6504) to exercise a one-year option for information technology services related to information assurance, mobile communication assets, shipboard electronic support and communication security support. Work will be performed worldwide, and is expected to be completed by June 2015. No funds will be obligated at the time of award, and funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command, Washington, District of Columbia, is the contracting activity (N00033-12-D-6504).

ARMY

Rapiscan Systems, Inc., Torrance, California, was awarded a $102,521,440 foreign military sales contract with options for 80 Rapiscan Eagle M60's and contractor logistics support to Iraq. Work will be performed in Torrance, California, and Iraq with an estimated completion date of June 19, 2016. One bid was solicited and one received. Fiscal 2010 other procurement (Army) funds in the amount of $102,521,440 are being obligated at the time of the award. Army Contracting Command, Natick, Massachusetts, is the contracting activity (W911QY-14-C-0081).

J. Kokolakis Contracting, Inc., Bohemia, New York, was awarded a $48,826,910 firm-fixed-price contract for renovation and modernization of the MacArthur Short Barracks at West Point with an estimated completion date of June 18, 2015. Bids were solicited via the internet with six received. Fiscal 2014 operations and maintenance (Army) funds in the amount of $48,826,910 are being obligated at the time of the award. Army Contracting Command, West Point, New York, is contracting activity (W911SD-14-C-0005).

STG, Inc.*, Reston, Virginia was awarded a $27,229,337 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract with options for information technology support for the 2d Signal Center Theater Network Operations and Security Center, Fort Huachuca, Arizona, with a completion date of June 30, 2017. Bids were solicited via the internet with 12 received. Fiscal 2014 operations and maintenance (Army) funds in the amount of $27,229,337 are being obligated at the time of the award. Army Contracting Command, Fort Huachuca, Arizona, is the contracting activity (W91RUS-14-C-0015).

L-3 Communications Corp., Wilmington, Massachusetts, was awarded a $13,384,687 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract with options for the wide area 6-degree payload critical design/flight under Army Research Laboratory broad agency announcement W911NF-12-R-0011. The estimated completion date is June 30, 2017. Work will be performed in Wilmington, Massachusetts. Bids were solicited via the Internet with six received. Fiscal 2014 other procurement funds in the amount of $13,384,687 are being obligated at the time of the award. Army Contracting Command is the contracting activity (W911QX-14-C-0049).

AIR FORCE

The Boeing Co. Defense, Space and Security, St. Louis, Missouri, has been awarded an $80,000,000 indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contract for Small Diameter Bomb Increment 1 (SDB 1) technical support. The contractor will provide SDB 1 weapon integration support, including technical support to the designated aircraft System Program Offices testing, upgrades, program management support, and software updates to the SDB 1system required to integrate the SBD 1 weapon system with other weapons systems. Work will be performed in St. Louis, Missouri, and is expected to be completed by June 19, 2019. This award is a result of a sole-source acquisition. Fiscal 2014 U.S. Navy research, development, training and evaluations funds in the amount of $250,774 are being obligated at time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center/EBMK, Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, is the contracting activity (FA8672-14-D-0007).

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY

Welch Allyn, Inc., Skaneateles Falls, New York, has been awarded a maximum $43,650,000 modification (P00101) exercising the fifth option period on a one-year base contract (SPM2D1-09-D-8350) with nine one-year option periods. This is a fixed-price with economic-price-adjustment contract for patient monitoring systems, subsystems, accessories, consumables, spare/repair parts and training. Location of performance is New York with a June 23, 2015 performance completion date. Using military services are Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and federal civilian agencies. Type of appropriation is fiscal 2014 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

General Electric Aviation Systems, Vandalia, Ohio, has been awarded a modification (P00002) to add additional aviation consumable items to the existing long term contract (SPE4A2-14-D-0001). This modification adds an additional $644,165 to increase the overall contract value to $6,700,498. This contract is a three-year base with two three-year option periods. This is a fixed-price with economic-price-adjustment, prospective-price-redetermination contract. Locations of performance are Ohio, Michigan and Illinois with a Feb. 23, 2017 performance completion date. Using military services are Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps. Type of appropriation is fiscal 2014 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Aviation, Richmond, Virginia.

MISSILE DEFENSE AGENCY

BAE Systems, Inc., of Nashua, New Hampshire, was awarded a $9,404,964 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for 512×512 two-color high speed Digital Focal Plane Arrays (DFPAs). The contract provides for development and demonstration of 512×512 two-color high speed DFPAs for missile defense, offering a combination of high resolution, high frame rate and advanced digital processing functionality. BAE will deliver five DFPAs of the Baseline Development Run and three DFPAs of the Baseline Process Verification Run to the Missile Defense Agency for additional testing, a set of interface electronics and a user guide to facilitate testing. Options work will also include an updated read-out integrated circuit design, leveraging available results from the base program and verification of DFPA design compliance to MDA’s High Altitude Exoatmospheric Nuclear Survivability Standard. Work will be performed at Lexington, Massachusetts, and Camarillo, California, with an expected completion date of January 2017. Fiscal 2014 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $4,301,000 are being obligated at time of award. This contract was a competitive acquisition under the MDA Broad Agency Announcement for Advanced Technology Innovation, HQ0147-11-ATI-BAA. The Missile Defense Agency, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity (HQ0147-14-C-0007).

*Small business


3-D Printing at NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center

SECRETARY HAGEL, GERMAN'S MINISTER OF DEFENSE LEYEN DISCUSS MUTUAL INTEREST

FROM:  U.S. DEFENSE DEPARTMENT  

Right:  Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel hosts an honor cordon to welcome Germany's Minister of Defense Ursula von der Leyen to the Pentagon, June 19, 2014. The two leaders met to discuss matters of mutual national interest. DOD Photo by Glenn Fawcett.  
Hagel, German Defense Minister Discuss NATO, Iraq
By Cheryl Pellerin
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, June 19, 2014 – Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen met this morning at the Pentagon, reaffirming the two nations’ strong friendship and alliance, Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby said in a statement.

The leaders discussed security challenges, ranging from post-2014 commitments in Afghanistan to recent developments in Iraq, Syria and Ukraine, Kirby said.
"Secretary Hagel and Minister von der Leyen discussed both nations' efforts to reinforce NATO and to reassure our NATO allies since Russia's aggressive actions in Ukraine,” he said, adding that such reassurance includes ongoing air, land and sea measures by the U.S. military and other NATO members.
The measures include President Barack Obama's June 3 announcement of the European Reassurance Initiative of up to $1 billion to fund increased rotational presence and exercises across Europe, and Germany's contributions, which in September will include support to NATO's Baltic air policing mission, Kirby said.

Hagel also thanked von der Leyen for Germany's contributions and sacrifices in Afghanistan.

“Germany has been the third largest contributor of troops and the leader of Regional Command North,” the press secretary said. “We welcome Germany's willingness to continue leading Regional Command North as part of NATO's post-2014 Resolute Support mission.”

Hagel and von der Leyen also discussed the upcoming NATO Summit, to be held Sept. 4-5 in Wales.

Kirby said the United States and Germany count on each other to be credible, capable partners as leaders in the transatlantic alliance and the global community.
“As the crises in Iraq, Syria and Ukraine remind us,” he added, “our leadership roles require investment in ready, modern, agile militaries.”

He added, “Both leaders recognized the importance of investing in capabilities that will strengthen our collective security.”

Both also agreed that, as the NATO Summit approaches, they must renew their commitments to transatlantic security, Kirby said.

After their meeting, Hagel left the Pentagon for the White House where the president met with members of his national security team in the Situation Room ahead of Obama’s statement on the U.S. response to violence in Iraq.
Von der Leyen, who Hagel invited to Washington in February during the Munich Security Conference, held a press conference on the steps of the Pentagon’s River entrance.

The German defense minister characterized her conversation with Hagel as “trustful and constructive,” and on the crisis in Iraq she said, “For the long term we need a sustainable solution for the whole region. That is, we have to integrate the diplomatic and political solution from neighboring countries of the whole region.”

AG HOLDER'S REMARKS ON HEROIN AND PRESCRIPTION DRUGS

FROM:  U.S. JUSTICE DEPARTMENT 
Attorney General Holder Delivers at the ONDCP Summit on Heroin and Prescription Drugs
~ Thursday, June 19, 2014

Thank you, Michael [Botticelli], for those kind words; for your more than two decades of service and leadership in confronting the crisis posed by substance use disorders; and for all that you and your colleagues in the Office of National Drug Control Policy do every day to forge safer and healthier communities.

 It’s a pleasure to help welcome this distinguished group to the White House for today’s important summit.  And it’s a privilege to stand with so many experts, advocates, and extraordinary leaders from America’s law enforcement, public health, and education communities.  The dedication that you have shown to confronting heroin and prescription drug abuse – not only by participating in events like this one, but through your tireless work across the country – is not only inspiring; it makes a tremendous, positive difference.  Your efforts enable us to improve and save countless lives.  And your guidance and expertise – when it comes to addressing the drug abuse epidemic holistically and keeping dangerous substances off of our streets – comes at a time when much is at stake, and this work could not be more important.

You know as well as anyone that the challenges we face are daunting.  You’ve shown us that, as we seek to address the problem of substance abuse, it makes sense to focus on the most dangerous types of drugs.  And right now, few substances are more lethal than prescription opioids and heroin.

Between 2006 and 2010 – across America – heroin deaths increased by 45 percent.  That’s a shocking statistic, but it’s only one of many clear indications that we’re up against an urgent public safety and public health crisis – one that affects Americans in every state, in every region, and from every background and walk of life.  We’ve learned from scientific studies, treatment providers, victims, and investigations that the cycle of heroin abuse commonly begins with prescription opioid abuse.  And this can make the problem exceedingly difficult to track and to overcome.

But that’s exactly why your participation – and your leadership – is more vital today than ever before.  As federal officials, law enforcement officers, medical providers, and prevention and treatment experts, each of you stands on the front lines of our effort to protect this nation from the devastating impact of illegal drug use.  And together – through collaboration and cooperation among stakeholders at every level – we’re making significant strides to build a better, brighter, and more secure future for ourselves and our children.

In recent years, we have targeted the illegal supply chain.  We’ve taken steps to prevent doctor-shopping by drug users and distributors.  We’ve disrupted pill mills masquerading as pain management clinics around the country.  We’ve developed and advocated for cutting-edge public health solutions on the state, local, and community levels.  And as we speak – under the leadership of Acting Director Botticelli and his colleagues in ONDCP – we’re implementing the Administration’s 2011 Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Plan, so we can target abuse through education, monitoring, medication disposal, and enforcement.

As Acting Director Botticelli noted, these comprehensive efforts are showing promise.  But our work is far from over.  Significant challenges remain before us, and a range of serious and evolving obstacles lie ahead.

Now, I have no doubt – based on the professionalism, the grit, and the insight that has characterized the work that’s underway – that we will confront the impediments ahead with determination and strength.  And I want to assure you that, as you drive our national efforts into the future, you will continue to have not only my admiration and gratitude – but also my full and unwavering support.  My colleagues and I – at every level of the Justice Department – are firmly dedicated to fulfilling the goals we share and combating the challenges on today’s agenda.  And I’m proud to note that this is a commitment we’re backing up with robust action.

Since the beginning of this Administration, with DEA as our lead agency, the Justice Department has adopted a sweeping strategy to prevent pharmaceutical controlled substances from getting into the hands of non-medical users.  We have used our regulatory authority to review and investigate new pharmacy applications to identify and prevent storefront drug traffickers from obtaining DEA registrations.  And since 2010, we have joined with our regulatory partners to sponsor eight Drug Take Back events that provide the general public with a safe, convenient and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs – providing an incentive for consumers to safely clean out their medicine cabinets.  These Drug Take Back efforts have resulted in the safe destruction of over 2,100 tons of prescription drugs.  And DEA is in the process of promulgating a regulation that will make it easier to establish permanent drug disposal sites nationwide.

We also have stepped up our investigatory efforts, opening more than 4,500 heroin-related investigations since 2011, and increasing the amount of heroin seized along America’s southwest border between 2008 and 2013 by 320 percent. Of course, like you, I recognize that we cannot solve this problem through enforcement alone.  And we will never be able to arrest or incarcerate our way to becoming a safer nation.

This is why education, prevention, and treatment – along with vigorous enforcement – must all be significant components of any comprehensive solution.  Over the past few years, the DEA and others within the Department of Justice have stepped forward to help educate pharmacists, doctors, and other health practitioners in the identification and prevention of controlled substance diversion during the healthcare delivery process.  In the Northern District of Ohio, for example, our U.S. Attorney convened a summit at the Cleveland Clinic, bringing together health and law enforcement professionals to address that area’s 400-percent rise in heroin-related deaths.  And across the country, DEA has participated in numerous conferences at the request of professional health care practitioner organizations to educate their members on prescription drug abuse and diversion trends.  Additionally, since 2011, DEA has sponsored 34 Pharmacy Diversion Awareness Conferences in 16 states – training over 6,500 pharmacists and pharmacy techs in prescription drug abuse trends, the Controlled Substances Act, and the pharmacist’s role in preventing controlled substance diversion at the pharmacy level.

On the national level, we’re moving even more broadly – under the Smart on Crime initiative I announced last August – to put in place a range of targeted, systemic reforms to ensure that 21st century challenges can be met with 21st century solutions.

This groundbreaking new effort relies upon proven, evidence-based strategies to achieve better outcomes throughout the federal criminal justice system – and particularly with regard to nonviolent, drug-related crimes.  These policy changes are predicated on the notion that our work must be informed, and our criminal justice system continually strengthened, by the most effective and efficient strategies available.

We’re also strengthening diversion programs like drug courts, veterans courts, and community service initiatives – so we can provide alternatives to incarceration for some people and offer treatment and rehabilitation to those who need it.  Nationwide, the Justice Department is supporting more than 2,600 specialty courts that connect over 120,000 people convicted of drug-related offenses with the services they need to avoid future drug use.

And we’re striving to improve and reinforce reentry programs and initiatives from coast to coast – so we can enable formerly incarcerated individuals to return to their communities better prepared to contribute, and to lead, as full and productive members of society.

Let me be clear:  we will never waver in our commitment to act aggressively to keep America’s streets safe and our children free from drug addiction and abuse.  And we will never stop being tough on crime and the choices that breed it.  But, like you, we also recognize that we must be smart, efficient, and effective as we strive to disrupt and diminish the scourge of addiction – along with the underlying conditions that trap too many individuals in a vicious cycle of drugs, criminality, and incarceration.

Like many of you, my dedication to this work is personal as well as professional – because, as a former U.S. Attorney and Superior Court judge, I have witnessed the devastating impact that prescription drug and substance abuse can have on individuals, on families, and on entire communities.  I understand the importance of bringing law enforcement officers, community leaders, public health professionals, prosecutors, and other stakeholders together to confront these conditions.  In fact, during my tenure as U.S. Attorney here in Washington, my staff and I pioneered the first-ever community prosecution effort in our nation’s capital.  And we saw both the power and the necessity of employing an approach that draws on the passion, the knowledge, and the expertise of a wide range of authorities and citizens.

Based on the diverse perspectives represented here at the White House today, I know you share that confidence.  You recognize that necessity.  And that’s why you’re making sure our efforts don’t end with treatment, incarceration, or even community outreach: because, when it comes to prescription drug and heroin abuse, the problem does not begin in prisons, or in gangs, or in forgotten areas of our city streets.  It begins in our neighborhoods, on our playgrounds, in our schools.  It begins, all too often, at home.

At the end of the day, the most important work we do is invariably the work that takes place within our own communities – not simply as professionals, but as mentors, advocates, and counselors; as parents, neighbors, and friends.  We need to make sure our kids live in neighborhoods where adults can reach out to them – where moms and dads, teachers and faith leaders, little league coaches and Scoutmasters can be trusted and positive influences in young lives.  And this work must be embraced by whole communities – because it is only by standing together, through collective action and comprehensive effort, that we’ll be able to make the difference we seek.

We need your expertise – but also your passion, your dedication, and your proximity.  We need your boots on the ground and your ideas in effect – here in Washington and around the nation.  Especially over the last five years – through summits like this one and the partnerships you’ve forged on the front lines, national leaders in and far beyond this room have come together to learn, to strategize, to collaborate – and to act.  Today, we reaffirm our commitment to push these efforts forward.  And we renew our pledge to break down traditional “silos” of responsibility; to rally additional experts and allies to this cause; and to use every tool and authority at our disposal to help navigate the complex and interconnected challenges that remain before us.

We’ve seen, after all, that progress will not come easily.  Positive change will not occur as quickly as we might like.  But forums like this one are a testament to the importance of cooperation in the face of adversity.  And as long as we keep our commitments to one another; as long as we keep seeking new ways to work together; as long as we keep striving to build on the promising work that so many of you are leading – I believe there’s good reason for confidence in where these efforts will take us from here.

I am proud to count you as colleagues and partners in the considerable work that lies ahead.  I thank you, once again, for all that you’re doing – today and every day – to combat drug abuse and protect our young people.  I look forward to all that we will accomplish together in the months and years ahead.  And I wish you all a most productive summit.

Thank you.