Federal Bureau of Investigation

The dispatch is from Reuters. And the dateline is Wonderland. Flush with success in turning Iran away from nukes and Syria away from Tehran, the administration seems to be setting its sights on turning Hezbollah away from Hezbollah. If this is truly the goal of the administration, look for an another spectacular humiliation. No, worse: It will be a spectacular self-abasement. After all, there’s no evidence that the Lebanese terror fraternity is looking to become mild and modest.

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The only good result of this trauma is that nobody died. And, of course, we now know—as if we didn’t know before!—that we can count on the local police, the FBI, and the Joint Terrorism Task Force to actually come through with the culprit and the evidence against him. (The fecklessness of the Justice Department is another matter. At first, it did not read Faisal Shahzad his Miranda rights. Then, when he began copiously to spill the beans, the Holder folk did inform him. Maybe they were afraid that they’d learn too much.

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I take it is a relief that, aside from its rhetorical pandering to the civil libertarian absolutists who can’t seem to grasp that Muslim terror networks are in a worldwide war with the United States and its remaining allies, the Obama administration is actually extending the life of the Bush presidency in its defense against jihad. Eli Lake, who is among the most discerning journalists on the intelligence beat, has written an analysis in Reason on where—or, rather, how little—the Obami have deviated from Bush guidelines. When it comes to the legal framework for confronting terrorism, President

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Trojan Horse

The new council that will cripple financial reform.

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On a February morning in 2006, as Sana’a, the capital of Yemen, was jolted awake by the calls to prayer from the city’s mosques, 23 Yemeni prisoners crawled their way to freedom. They had spent weeks patiently digging a 140-foot tunnel that would extend from their basement prison cell to a nearby mosque. Among the escapees were Jamal al-Badawi, the alleged mastermind of the 2000 USS Cole bombing that killed 17 American sailors, and Jaber al-Banna, a Yemeni with U.S.

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Laura Rozen reports on a troubling report from retired general Barry McCaffrey and commissioned by Centcom commander David Petraeus: "The international civilian agency surge will essentially not happen ---although State Department officers, US AID, CIA, DEA, and the FBI will make vital contributions. Afghanistan over the next 2-3 years will be simply too dangerous for most civil agencies." For more on the challenge of mounting an effective civilian effort in a war zone, see this recent TNR piece by Steve Metz.

Going Rogue?

No, this post will have nothing to do with Sarah Palin. It concerns the hearing held this morning by the Senate Homeland Security Committee regarding the terrorist attack carried out by Maj. Nidal Hassan against his fellow soldiers at Fort Hood, a hearing called by that Committee's chairman, Joe Lieberman. Given the gravity of this incident and the potential for future such attacks, it makes eminent sense that such a hearing would occur, in order to find out how such clear and visible signals of impending danger were ignored by the Army hierarchy.

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What is NIAC?

On Friday, TNR Contributing Editor and Washington Times national security reporter Eli Lake published a blockbuster scoop about the National Iranian American Council, (NIAC), and it's founder, Trita Parsi. I recently wrote about Parsi's appearance at the J Street conference, where he waived away concerns about the Iranian regime's warnings about destroying Israel and compared such invocations to statements issued by the United States about Iran's nuclear program.

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Perhaps in responding to Jason, I wasn’t clear about why I don’t think we have grounds yet for calling Nidal Hassan’s act an act of terrorism. Let me try once more, and let me make one thing clear: I am not ruling out that it was, and I don’t require that he admit it was.

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According to an FBI press release, Robert Cabelly, who attempted to lobby on behalf of Sudan from 2005-2007, has just been indicted on eight counts--including money laundering, passport fraud, and conspiracy to act as an unregistered agent of a foreign power. In 2006, his work for Sudan was legal, since the Bush administration's State Department granted him a waiver to lobby in the United States.

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