Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today’s Headlines and Commentary

By Ritika Singh
Monday, December 3, 2012, 12:21 PM

Just in case you had a good weekend, Bruce Riedel of Brookings gives us the latest update on Al Qaeda’s emerging power bases in The Daily Beast:

Under siege by drones in Pakistan and Yemen, al Qaeda 3.0 has exploited the Arab Awakening to create its largest safe havens and operational bases in more than a decade across the Arab world. This may prove to be the most deadly al Qaeda yet.

Meanwhile, the Associated Press reports that two Pakistan-born Florida gentlemen have been charged with material support for terrorism. Details are still hazy, but “[t]he indictment alleges that the two provided money, property, lodging, communications equipment and other support for a conspiracy to obtain a weapon of mass destruction between July 2011 and this week.” Carol Cratty of has more.

Drama at Bradley Manning’s trial on Friday: Prosecutors showed the courtroom the noose Manning had fashioned out of bed sheets to illustrate the legitimacy of his jailers’ concern that Manning presented a suicide risk. Josh Gerstein of Politico has the story.

CNN’s Jill Dougherty reports that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is meeting Pakistan's Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar and Army Chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani today in Brussels.

Speaking of the frenemies, James Traub of Foreign Policy discusses U.S.-Pakistan relations in the context of negotiations with the Taliban.

And speaking of the Taliban, Taliban insurgents attacked the U.S.-Afghan base in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, yesterday, report Azam Ahmed and Matthew Rosenberg of the New York Times. Nine militants, four Afghan soldiers, and at least four civilians were killed.

Anand Gopal of West Point’s Combating Terrorism Center has this piece in the CTC Sentinel about the emerging rifts in the Taliban leadership. This issue of the newsletter also has articles on the terrorism challenges in Mali and Syria.

Leo Kelion of reports on the United Nation’s International Telecommunications Union (ITU) conference in Dubai about regulating the internet, which began today. The proposal is facing resistance from many countries, as well as companies like Google. Brett Solomon has this op-ed in Wired arguing that the ITU is inherently flawed. Jack discussed the WCIT-12 in this post.

Jeremy Herb of The Hill reports that the Senate hopes to finish the defense bill this week. Godspeed, gentlepeople.

From the Department of Evergreen Subjects: Nada Bakos of Foreign Policy describes the many difficulties of intelligence coordination, even after 9/11.

Nick Bilton writes in the New York Times about this letter from six Republican congressmen to the FBI “demanding that Twitter ban two militant groups, Hamas and Hezbollah.”

And, from The Onion, comes this story about why we might not even have to worry about the NDAA and the fiscal cliff: it’s today’s Moment of Zen.

Congress Arrested On Manslaughter Charges

Negligent Group Believed Responsible For Millions Of American Deaths

WASHINGTON—In a stunning development that has left every federal institution reeling, the U.S. government’s legislative branch was arrested this afternoon on 23.3 million separate charges of manslaughter, sources confirmed.

Citing numerous lethal actions over nearly two and a half centuries—including negligent health care policies, failure to fund reconstruction on dangerously dilapidated roads and bridges, and repeatedly putting American soldiers in harm’s way in every armed conflict dating back to the War of 1812—authorities handcuffed all 535 members of Congress today and escorted them from the Capitol building amidst a throng of onlookers.

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