Frequently Asked Questions – the SAM website
Frequently Asked Questions – the SAM Database
Yes! Just choose your desired region in the "View Site by Region" drop down menu at the top of each page or find it under the "Regions" tab. All of the website’s content – the data, news, events calendar, legislation, policy statements, blog, etc. – will now automatically filter to that region. If you wish to view global content, select "Global" in the same menu. If you want to limit just the data to one region, while keeping all other information global, you can do so in our database (see question X).
Everyday we upload a wealth of resources, including, but not limited to: U.S. government statements, news links, NGO analyses, and legislation. Visit our Resource page for links to all resources or go to any country or region page to find the latest for resources relating to that specific country or region.
You can also check out our events calendar to get up see upcoming Congressional hearings, U.S. official travel and public events in Washington D.C. on U.S. security policies. For analysis of the data and regional security developments, see our blog.
Security Assistance Monitor aims to help our users understand complex U.S. assistance data through facts sheets, research publications and our blog, which is updated regularly. To learn more about U.S. security assistance to Africa, Middle East, Eurasia and Latin America and the Caribbean see here.
If the website is filtered to a certain region, click on the “Countries” tab to view a list of countries in that region as well as the most recent data available for each country.
The Countries and Programs pages feature a table that lists all of the countries/ programs that fall under your selected region along with the most recent data for each country/ program. Clicking on a value will direct you to our database, where you can access more data for that country/ program. Clicking on a country or program name will direct you to a dedicated country/ program page, where you can find the latest resources and analyses posted about that country/ program.
Every day Security Assistance Monitor staff upload the latest security-related news, policy statements, legislation, events, etc. to the website. The database is updated as soon as Security Assistance Monitor receives new government reports, which occurs multiple times in a given year.
If you are using newer versions of Safari or Internet Explorer, you might have to disable your cookies blocker for the data charts and tables to display. Here are quick instructions for how to do so:
- Open the Safari menu and select “Preferences”
- Select the “Privacy”
- Set block cookies to “Never”
- Close the preferences window and reopen your browser
- Click on the gear wheel icon in the top right corner to open Explorer’s menu
- Click on the “Internet Options” tab
- Select “Privacy”
- Slide the scale down to the bottom, until you see “Accept All Cookies”
- Click Apply and OK to close to the window.
- Reopen your browser
Frequently Asked Questions – the SAM Database
First, select the type of assistance you would like to see - Military Aid, Economic Aid, Arms Sales or Trainees – using the drop down menu in the “Show data for” menu in the top box on the data page. Then, you can choose to display assistance totals “by country” or “by program.”
If you are looking for a breakdown of one aid program’s assistance to multiple countries, first organize the database by country in the top gray box, and then use the bottom box to select the program of choice.
To display the amount of assistance one country received through all programs, first organize the data by program in the top box, and then use the bottom gray box to focus the data on the country.
In both cases, you can filter the data further in the lower gray box by selecting a region, a date range and “program type,” which allows users to see programs grouped together based on shared sources of funding or areas of interest: Programs funded by the Defense Department, found in the State Department’s Foreign Operations Appropriations, programs authorized by the Foreign Assistance Act or Arms Export Control Act, or programs focused on counternarcotics.
For step-by-step instruction on how to filter the data, please view our screencast.
Selecting different assistance types:
Selecting a specific country or program:
In addition to a search bar, which lets users quickly search for a country, program or item in a given data table, there is also an interactive filter that can be accessed on the top left corner of the trends chart. This is a more sophisticated filtering option than the gray boxes discussed in the previous question. Using this feature, you can filter the data in more advanced ways by choosing which specific countries and programs you wish to display. We recommend only focusing on the “country,” “program” and “year (year)” filtering options.
Click the “Filters” tab to the top left of the graph. Select the checkbox for “country” and “program” from the menu and click “Show.” A list of all countries and programs will appear. Selecting countries or programs will display data only for these countries or programs. You can also “exclude” specific countries and/or programs from the dataset by selecting “exclude selected” from the dropdown at the bottom of the menu. Click “reset all” to return to previous settings.
When you use this option, the graph will still only display one line – the total for your selection. For example, if you want to show International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement program totals for Colombia and Mexico, the line will display the trend of INCLE aid to Mexico and Colombia combined for each year. The table below the graph will break down the data by country or program (depending on how the dataset “view” is set. See the above answer for more info on setting the dataset “view.”).
For step-by-step instruction on how to use the interactive filters, please view our screencast.
Using the data tables’ search function:
Using the interactive filters:
Yes, from any of the main tables, you can click on a cell to see a breakdown of the total. If the table is set to view by country, clicking on the cell will display the assistance totals by program for that country and year. If the table is set to view by program, clicking on the cell will display the assistance totals by country for that program and year.
Default military and police aid data table:
A new data table that shows a breakdown of military and police aid to Jordan in 2009:
You can often continue clicking through military and police aid, arms sales, and trainee data to access additional details, such as the quantity, type and cost of items sold to another country in a given year. Trainee details often include the title of the U.S. training course, the location of the training, the foreign military or police unit trained, and the U.S. unit that conducted the training.
While the vast majority of arms sales and training programs have these itemized breakdowns, U.S. government reports do not always provide details for military and police aid programs. If you click on an amount and no further details are available, you will reach a table that reads “No data available in table.”
For step-by-step instruction on how to access an itemized breakdown of the data, please view our screencast.
The initial breakdown of military and police aid to Jordan in 2009:
A table with additional details about Coalition Support Funds assistance to Jordan in 2009:
To download a trends chart, click on the downward arrow in the bottom-right corner of the chart, and select your desired format - PNG, JPEG, PDF or SVG. To download a data table, click on the Excel or PDF icons in the top-right of the table.
While we encourage all of our users to download these charts and tables, we ask that you please cite Security Assistance Monitor and include the date of download if you use our information in a publication.
Each data value is sourced to a U.S. government report, a link to which can be found in any details table (see question 2 about how to drill through the data tables). To access the U.S. government report online, select the URL that appears in the source field. Without releasing the mouse, select Command C (on a Mac) or Ctrl C (on a PC) on your keyboard to copy the URL. Then paste the URL into a new browser window