FROM Conrad Crane
JSOC and the Killing of Osama bin Laden A photograph from the Obama White House shows the President, Vice President, Secretaries of State and Defense, Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and other aides watching in rapt attention as the raid on Osama bin Laden's hideout takes place. Deputy National Security Advisor John Brennan called it an " anxiety-filled " moment, but it's also a demonstration of state-of-the-art technology used by JSOC, the highly secretive Joint Special Operations Command. We hear about the death of bin Laden, and benefits and the risks of high-tech, high-risk anti-terrorism compared to the long slog of counter-insurgency?.
JSOC and the Killing of Osama bin Laden A photograph from the Obama White House shows the President, Vice President, Secretaries of State and Defense, Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and other aides watching in rapt attention as the raid on Osama bin Laden's hideout takes place. Deputy National Security Advisor John Brennan called it an " anxiety-filled " moment, but it's also a demonstration of the state-of-the-art technology used by JSOC, the Joint Special Operations Command. The head of al Qaeda was killed by a team that's part of JSOC, an organization most Americans never heard. It now may become a household word, synonymous with anti-terrorism that's very high-tech and very high-risk. We hear how members are chosen, trained and equipped, and what kinds of missions they're used for. JSOC costs a billion dollars a year, but Congress doesn't ask many questions. What interrogation methods does JSOC use? Should it be more open?
An End to the Civil War in Iraq? The "surge" of US military forces in Iraq has reduced the level of violence, as promised. However, not until this week did the "so-called "breathing room" lead to "benchmark legislation" from the Iraqi parliament. The Shiite-dominate legislature has passed a a law promoted by the United States, that's supposed to open the government to Sunnis bureaucrats, engineers, teachers, soldiers and police officers from Saddam-Hussein's Baath Party. But today's New York Times reports that it could make matters worse.
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.
Replacing Obamacare: Now you see it… now you don’t As the Senate deliberates replacing Obmacare, health coverage for millions of people is at stake. There've been no public hearings, and a draft measure won't be made public. Is the House version so unpopular that that Senate is hiding a version that looks much the same?