CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 19, 2012 |
In the face of privacy concerns, the Los Angeles Police Department has agreed to change the way it collects information on suspicious activity possibly related to terrorism. The department, after coming under fire from civil liberties and community groups, will no longer hold on to so-called suspicious activity reports that the LAPD's counter-terrorism unit determines are about harmless incidents. Until now, the department stored the innocuous reports in a database for a year.
April 30, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - President Obama's top counter-terrorism advisor Monday defended using drones to launch missiles against militants in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, saying the growing use of armed unmanned aircraft had saved American lives and caused few civilian casualties. The comments by John Brennan, coming shortly before the first anniversary of the U.S. Navy SEAL raid that killed Osama bin Laden, marks the first time a senior White House official has spoken at length in public about widely reported but officially secret drone operations.
January 28, 2012 |
When Jeffery H. Moran goes to work each day, he swipes his security badge, passes into an airtight chamber, opens a bombproof door and enters a lab full of deadly toxins. As chief of the counter-terrorism laboratory at the Arkansas Department of Health — one of 62 such federally funded labs in the country — he heads two dozen chemists who are on constant alert for the release of pestilence or poisons in the United States. Armed with $2 million worth of new equipment, Moran concocts gruesome tests to keep his team sharp.
November 21, 2011 |
Jose Pimentel appears to have spent much of his time hanging out on the stoop of an upper Manhattan apartment building, smoking cigarettes and being such a layabout that one old schoolmate assumed he was a drug addict or homeless. Police arrested the 27-year-old convert to Islam on Saturday and accused him of plotting to blow up U.S. targets — including American troops returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — and launch a one-man holy war in New York City. On Monday, Pimentel's mother, Carmen Sosa, seemed stunned by her son's arrest and unable to understand how he could have turned into a radical Muslim.
October 31, 2011 |
American leaders have traditionally explained the foundations of the U.S.-Israel relationship by citing shared democratic values and the moral responsibility America bears to protect the small nation-state of the Jewish people. Although accurate and essential, this characterization is incomplete because it fails to capture a third, crucial aspect: the many ways in which Israel advances U.S. national interests. Today, Israeli contributions to U.S. national interests cover a broad spectrum.
October 17, 2011 |
Almost since the United States began using the unmanned aerial vehicles known as drones, their use has drawn criticism. The latest criticism, which has received considerable attention in the wake of the drone strike on Anwar Awlaki, is that America's use of drones has sparked a new international arms race. While it is true that some other nations have begun developing their own unmanned aerial vehicles, the extent of the alarm is unjustified. Much of it rests on myths that are easily dispelled.
September 6, 2011 |
On a sunny afternoon this summer, dozens of Los Angeles police officers converged on the Iman Cultural Center and mosque in West Los Angeles. They brought bureaucratic swag - pens and mugs emblazoned with the LAPD insignia - and then, accompanied by a smiling Chief Charlie Beck, crowded into a banquet hall in a blue swarm of friendly handshakes and words of welcome and fellowship. When it was his turn at the microphone, Deputy Chief Michael Downing added another point: that the LAPD values its relationship with Muslim communities and wants people to continue to reach out if they suspect someone they know is becoming radicalized.
July 23, 2011 |
In the immediate wake of the bombing and mass shooting in Norway that left at least 92 people dead Friday, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg declared that it was too early to say whether terrorism was involved. Some interpreted the statement to mean it was unclear whether Muslim extremists were behind the attack. Right-wing websites quickly pointed the finger at "jihadis," and Pamela Geller, publisher of the website Atlas Shrugs and executive director of Stop Islamization of America, wrote on her site: "You can ignore jihad, but you cannot avoid the consequences of ignoring jihad.
July 21, 2011 |
The Obama administration is considering sending more Predator drones and other surveillance planes to bolster the NATO air war in Libya, and has reopened a debate over whether to give weapons to the rebels seeking to overthrow Moammar Kadafi, a senior Defense Department official said. NATO commanders requested the sophisticated surveillance aircraft after concluding that they were running out of military targets in Libya after four months of bombing and missile strikes against Kadafi's military forces and command facilities, U.S. and NATO officials said.
June 30, 2011 |
Precision strikes and raids, rather than large land wars, are the most effective way to defeat Al Qaeda, the Obama administration has concluded in a newly released counter-terrorism strategy. "Al Qaeda seeks to bleed us financially by drawing us into long, costly wars that also inflame anti-American sentiment," John Brennan, President Obama's counter-terrorism advisor, said in a speech Wednesday detailing the new strategy. "Going forward, we will be mindful that if our nation is threatened, our best offense won't always be deploying large armies abroad but delivering targeted, surgical pressure to the groups that threaten us. " Brennan, a longtime former CIA officer, spoke at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University in Washington, as the White House posted the new strategy on its website.