September 11, 2012 |
Angry crowds attacked U.S. diplomatic posts in Egypt and Libya on Tuesday, killing an American diplomat, after a video appeared on the Internet that protesters said insulted Islam, providing a graphic illustration of the volatile mood remaining in countries that threw off authoritarian rule in the "Arab Spring" uprisings. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in a statement that one State Department official had been killed at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, and that officials were working to secure the property and personnel.
August 4, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - The parliament on Saturday ordered Afghan President Hamid Karzai to replace the country's defense and interior ministers, dealing his administration a harsh blow as it struggles to show its readiness to take over security responsibilities before the planned U.S. troop withdrawal in 2014. By handing down no-confidence votes against Defense Minister Gen. Abdul Rahim Wardak and Interior Minister Bismullah Khan Mohammadi, lawmakers signaled their deep dissatisfaction with the Karzai administration's weak response to recent cross-border attacks from Pakistan, as well as its inability to halt a wave of assassinations of top Afghan officials or clamp down on corruption within Afghan security forces.
July 22, 2012 |
In the video, two camouflage-clad rebel fighters crouch behind a dumpster firing their rifles as cars drive by at casual, everyday speeds. In the distance, impatient drivers honk as if the revolution had not arrived on this street in southern Damascus. But if last week's surge of fighting and dramatic strike against the country's military command surprised the residents of the Syrian capital, none may have been more shocked than the rebels themselves. They now face the daunting prospect of seizing a city that for the length of the Syrian uprising has been under a veneer of normality as the rest of the country broke out into an armed insurrection.
July 14, 2012 |
ANTAKYA, Turkey — United Nations observers visited an alleged massacre site in Syria on Saturday but reached no conclusion about whether the killings were a deliberate slaughter of civilians or the result of clashes between government troops and insurgents. After entering the central village of Treimseh, the U.N. team also offered no estimate on casualties. Opposition activists say that as many as 200 people were killed. But the U.N. team did conclude that "an attack," apparently by government forces, "appeared targeted at specific groups and houses, mainly of army defectors and activists," according to the preliminary report.
July 5, 2012 |
BEIRUT - Violence in Syria has surged to an "unprecedented level," the chief of the United Nations observer mission said Thursday, as reports surfaced of the most high-profile defection to date from the security forces of President Bashar Assad. Gen. Robert Mood, who heads the observer team in Syria, painted a grim picture of a nation where both sides in the conflict seem determined to use force and show little appetite for compromise or dialogue. "The violence is continuing and escalating because the parties involved have decided that their objectives are better served by using violence than by choosing a political process," Mood told reporters in Damascus, the Syrian capital.
June 22, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan — Gunmen seized control of a lakeside hotel outside the Afghan capital early Friday, taking hostages and setting off an hours-long battle, police said. The Taliban claimed responsibility. By midmorning, about 20 hotel guests had been rescued and at least two of the attackers were dead, police said. One police officer was reported killed as well. Police said some civilians were believed to have been injured or killed, but did not yet have a firm count. The team of attackers, echoing a pattern in past strikes, besieged the Spozhmai hotel on the shores of Lake Karga with heavy weapons, with some of the assailants wearing vests laden with explosives.
June 1, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan — A member of the NATO force was killed in southern Afghanistan on Thursday, and attacks on police in several provinces left at least 11 Afghan law enforcement officers dead. The latest violence comes as local Afghan forces assume greater responsibility for security in advance of a planned pullout of NATO combat troops by the end of 2014. A NATO coalition spokeswoman said the coalition member's death was caused by a roadside bomb. In keeping with policy, she said, any additional information would be provided by officials of the victim's home country, which was not immediately given.
May 22, 2012
As the war on drugs has spread from Mexico to Central America, so has the U.S. role in Honduras. Pentagon contracts are helping to fund new military bases in remote regions of that country, and U.S. troops and special Drug Enforcement Administration agents have been deployed to train local security forces and assist in counter-narcotics operations. It's a delicate partnership, and one that is already causing controversy. Last week the Obama administration confirmed that DEA agents were with Honduran security forces aboard a U.S. helicopter during a botched May 11 operation.
May 12, 2012 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - In many ways, the two young soldiers were not so different from each other. Each was tough-minded and physically powerful. Each worked hard to win a place in an elite military unit, and spoke with pride of serving his country. They were 25 years old, these two: one newly married, the other planning a wedding this year. Their upbringings were as disparate as their homelands were distant, but religious faith was entwined with the family lives of both.
May 6, 2012 |
NEW DELHI - Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Saturday urgedBangladesh's squabbling political factions to resolve their differences as she arrived in the country, which has been beset by weeks of general strikes, demonstrations and violence since an opposition politician disappeared last month. The government and the opposition declared a truce for Clinton's visit. Each side blames the other for the disappearance of Elias Ali, one of as many as 22 people, mostly politicians, who have gone missing this year, according to human rights groups.