Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today's Headlines and Commentary

By Ritika Singh, Lawfare Staff
Monday, April 2, 2012, 3:50 PM

More information has emerged about Osama bin Laden's other residences in Pakistan, including another safe house he lived in while he was on the run, reports the Associated Press. Meanwhile, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta told the Canadian Broadcasting Company that bin Laden "continues to assert. . . [an] almost spiritual leadership" even after his death. Watch the interview here.

National Public Radio's Dina Temple-Raston reports that the military commissions chief prosecutor,  Brig. Gen. Mark Martins has requested that the commissions assignment be his last in the military and that he not be considered for promotion and reassignment next year. The move will provide continuity for the commissions prosecution team, which has seen a great deal of turnover in the top slot, through at least the end of 2014. Martins will be speaking tomorrow at the Harvard Law School. Stay tuned for the text of his remarks.

The New York Times discusses the struggle the CIA faces as it tries "to understand the nuclear ambitions of Iran" after the collosal intelligence failures that led to the Iraq War. Meanwhile, the AP reports that Secretary of State Hilary Clinton "says the United States seeks improved strategies with Arab Gulf states on maritime security and missile defense to counter the threat of Iran."

Speaking of the CIA, the AP also reports that Poland is finally breaking the silence on the secret black site it allowed the CIA to operate between 2002 and 2003. The rhetoric has been not-so-happy with the United States, which failed to keep Poland's hosting of the black sites secret--as it promised to do. Prime Minister Donald Tusk has called Poland the "'political victim' of leaks from U.S. officials."

China's at it again. The Chicago Tribune tells us--as do lots of other news organizations--that "China launched an Internet crackdown Friday amid its worst political crisis in decades, shuttering more than a dozen websites, limiting access to the country's largest micro-blog providers and arresting six people for spreading rumors about a coup attempt in Beijing."

According to Reuters, Afghanistan "wants the United States to clearly spell out what sort of military presence it will leave behind once most of its combat troops leave by the end of 2014."

Hello, Brave New World. DHS wants to mount mega-cameras on giant blimps to "spy on miles of border at once," says Wired's Danger Room. And in case that's not creepy enough, how about a nuclear drone?

Wired's Danger Room also covers Staff Sgt. Robert Bales's possible defenses--noting that "not a single service member accused of murder has ever been found not guilty by reason of insanity."

Jurist reports that "The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. . . [has] agreed to hear the case of Guantanamo detainee and Algerian national Djamel Ameziane. "

And straight from Pakistan, here's the latest fix From the Frenemy Press: The Express Tribune reports that a senior civil judge sentenced Bin Laden's three widows and two daughters to 45 days in prison and a fine of 10,000 Pakistani rupees each for illegally residing in Pakistan--after which they will be deported to their respective countries. And according to the Nation--not to be confused with The Nation magazine in this country--those negotiations between the Taliban and the United States you've been hearing about have actually netted a prisoner exchange agreement:

As a part of this deal, US administration will hand over five top leaders of Afghan Taliban currently languishing in Guantanamo Bay to government of Qatar. In return, Taliban will release two of nine soldiers of Nato forces, who were captured by Taliban last year.

Whether the Nation has got a big scoop here or vapor remains to be seen.

And, Pakistani journalist Ahmed Rashid, who gave a serious talk at Brookings last week, also offered on the Daily Show a two-part Moment of Zen:

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Exclusive - Ahmed Rashid Extended Interview Pt. 1
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog The Daily Show on Facebook
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Exclusive - Ahmed Rashid Extended Interview Pt. 2
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog The Daily Show on Facebook