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Counter Terrorism

July 20, 2010 | By Paul Richter, Tribune Washington Bureau
Reporting from Washington The nation's top intelligence official sought Monday to rebut a Washington Post series charging that intelligence agencies have become bloated and inefficient, insisting they "are achieving untold successes every day." David C. Gompert, the acting director of national intelligence, contended in a statement that the intelligence agencies strive to be efficient, and that some overlap is by design. "We work constantly to reduce inefficiencies and redundancies, while preserving a degree of intentional overlap among agencies to strengthen analysis, challenge conventional thinking, and eliminate single points of failure," he said.
July 1, 2010 | By Ken Dilanian, Los Angeles Times
A senior Obama administration counter-terrorism official said Wednesday that the government's campaign of targeted killings abroad "gives me pause," but he added that it would be "wholly irresponsible" not to stop those plotting to harm Americans. "A police officer doesn't need a court order to defend himself if someone pulls out a gun," Michael E. Leiter, who heads the National Counterterrorism Center, said during a national security conference session here. "The U.S. government has that same right of self-defense internationally."
July 1, 2010 | By John R. Bolton
America's Afghanistan policy is in chaos. Fear of another Vietnam is palpable, and our friends and adversaries worldwide sense it. NATO allies are lining up to depart the battlefield. Domestic political support is crumbling, all because of the utter incompetence of the war's management. The Obama administration has changed military commanders in Afghanistan for the second time, and the top civilian hierarchy may also change. Afghan President Hamid Karzai is said to be negotiating with the enemy.
June 8, 2010 | By Richard A. Serrano, Tribune Washington Bureau
Shortly after two New Jersey men were arraigned Monday on terrorism-related charges in Newark, N.J., Paul J. Fishman paused briefly on the steps of U.S. District Court. The top federal prosecutor in the state conceded that once again authorities had been lucky — this time with a pair of bumblers who allegedly pledged to wage jihad in Somalia but were being shadowed for years by FBI agents. Indeed, it marked the third time in six months that terrorism suspects were tripped up by their own ineptness.
May 27, 2010 | By Paul Richter, Tribune Washington Bureau
The Obama administration on Thursday released a sweeping statement of its national security goals, emphasizing a strong counter-terrorism effort but also citing the importance of government action on issues such as climate change and the economy. The 52-page manifesto, called the National Security Strategy, aims to draw contrasts with President Bush's 2006 version, which focused heavily on the anti-terrorism fight, and began by saying, "America is at war." The Obama plan says that the government campaign against radical extremism is "only one element of our strategic environment and cannot define America's engagement with the world."
May 6, 2010 | By Joel Rubin, Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Police Department officials acknowledged Wednesday that they disbanded a counter-terrorism unit earlier this year as part of Chief Charlie Beck's efforts to put more patrol officers on the streets amid budget cuts. The Protective Security Task Force team consisted of about two dozen plainclothes cops who were dispatched to provide a "cloak" of high-level security at buildings or events that had been threatened or were otherwise believed to be at risk, said Deputy Chief Michael Downing, head of the LAPD's Counter Terrorism and Criminal Intelligence Bureau.
April 7, 2010 | By Joe Biden
When I joined the Senate in 1973, crafting nuclear policy meant mastering arcane issues like nuclear stability and deterrence theory. With the end of the Cold War and a new relationship between our country and Russia, thankfully these subjects no longer dominate public discourse. Today, the danger of deliberate, global nuclear war has all but disappeared, but the nuclear threats we face from terrorists and non-nuclear states seeking to acquire such weapons are graver than ever. On Tuesday, President Obama took an important step toward addressing these threats by releasing a plan that will reduce the role of nuclear weapons in our national security strategy while ensuring that our nuclear arsenal remains safe, secure and effective for as long as it is needed.
March 9, 2010 | By Alex Rodriguez and Aoun Sahi
Reporting from Islamabad, Pakistan, and Lahore, Pakistan -- A suicide car bombing at a building in Lahore that houses terrorism investigators killed at least 13 people and wounded 80 others Monday, the first terrorist strike this year to hit a major city in Pakistan's Punjab heartland. The blast targeted a special investigative unit that interrogates key terrorism suspects. The building collapsed from the force of the blast, and rescuers spent the morning searching for survivors in the rubble.
March 8, 2010 | By Alex Rodriguez
Pakistani intelligence sources in Karachi said Sunday that security forces in the southern port city have arrested Adam Gadahn, a Southern California native who became a top propagandist for Al Qaeda and is wanted by the U.S. on treason charges. A U.S. counter-terrorism official said later that the CIA and other agencies "are looking into reports" of Gadahn's capture, but could not immediately confirm his arrest. Some reports said the man arrested may have been another American-born Al Qaeda operative.
February 24, 2010 | By Mark Magnier
Shaqeel Qalander, a furniture maker living on the Indian side of divided Kashmir, for years has been telling anyone willing to listen that India and Pakistan need to dial down their distrust, remove the cumbersome restrictions impeding trade and take other steps toward getting along. The tradesman said he wholeheartedly welcomed Thursday's meeting of the two nations' foreign secretaries in New Delhi, the first formal talks between the nuclear-armed neighbors since Pakistani-based militants attacked the Indian city of Mumbai 15 months ago. "We are very much pleased with such initiatives," Qalander said.
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