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The Triumph Of Bureaucracy: Al Qaeda’s Job Application

Now Hiring Sign

Who knew terrorists had an H.R. Department?

Osama Bin Laden Liked To Read 9/11 Conspiracy Books

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Newly released documents recovered from the home where Osama bin Laden hid until being killed in May 2011 by Seal Team Six reveal that the al Qaeda leader had some interesting reading habits: In his final hours, Osama bin Laden surrounded himself with conspiracy theories, U.S. government documents and even video game guides. The Obama […]

Lindsey Graham Wants To Kill Americans Without Inconvenience of Trial

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Lindsey Graham says that, if elected president, he would summarily kill anyone thinking about joining ISIS.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Sentenced To Death In Boston Marathon Bombing Trial

Tsarnaev Trial

Final justice, but far from the end of the road.

David Cameron To Propose Broad Expansion Of Powers To Crackdown On ‘Extremism’

David Cameron

Fresh off an election victory, British Prime Minister David Cameron is set to propose a series of new measures to crackdown on extremism that raise serious civil liberties concerns.

Seymour Hersh’s Osama Bin Laden Claims Don’t Pass The Smell Test

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Seymour Hersh is out with a conspiracy theory about the death of Osama bin Laden that just doesn’t make sense.

House Benghazi Investigation Seems More Concerned With 2016 Than Investigating Anything

Benghazi Consulate

Not surprisingly, the House Committee re-investigating the Benghazi attack seems more concerned with scoring political points than fact-finding.

George W. Bush Attacks Obama On Foreign Policy

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Pot, meet kettle.

Two Hostages, Including One American, Killed In Raid On Al Qaeda Targets

Predator Drone

An attack on al Qaeda outposts in January resulted in the death of two hostages, but also resulted in the death of two high value al Qaeda targets.

House Benghazi Committee Won’t Release A Report Until 2016

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Not surprisingly, the Select Committee established by House Republicans to investigate something that has already been investigated multiple times, will be in operation well into the Presidential Election season.

Cuba To Be Removed From List Of Terrorist States

Cuban American Flags

Another step forward for U.S.-Cuban relations.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Convicted On All Charges In Boston Marathon Bombing Trial

Tsarnaev Trial

An unsurprising outcome as we approach the second anniversary of the bombing at the Boston Marathon.

Germanwings Plane Likely Crashed Deliberately by Co-Pilot

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In a twist fitting for an M Night Shyamalan movie, there is growing evidence that there was malfeasance by the co-pilot that resulted in a deliberate crash of Germanwings flight 9525.

Boko Haram Pledges Support To ISIS

Boko Haram Nigerian Schoolgirls

Boko Haram, the Islamist terror group that has been a problem in Nigeria for several years now, has apparently pledged its allegiance to the Islamic State: With thousands of fighters and some parts of northeastern Nigeria under its control, Boko Haram is believed to be the largest jihadi group to pledge fidelity to the Islamic […]

ISIL Destroys Nimrud

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The gang calling itself the Islamic State has destroyed another historical site.

Joint Iraqi-Iranian Operations in Tikrit

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Iraqi army and Iranian army in joint offensive to retake Tikrit.

ISIS is What it Says it Is

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The Atlantic has a fascinating cover story by Graeme Wood titled “What ISIS Really Wants.”

ISIS Has Arrived In Libya, Just How Big A War Are We Looking At?

ISIS Fighters

ISIS apparently now has a foothold in Libya, and is making inroads in Yemen.

Denmark Terror Attacks and Machine-Gun Censorship

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Yet another attack on religious freedom in Europe.

Authorizations to Unlimited Military Force

FRANCE 24 | Screen grab of map showing areas controlled by the Islamic State group in Syria and Iraq 14 October 2014

Daniel Larison is far less ambivalent about our war on ISIL than me.

John Kerry Outsources American Foreign Policy To James Taylor

John Kerry JJames Taylor

With some still criticizing the Administration for not sending a higher-ranking officials to Sunday’s unity rally in Paris, Secretary of State John Kerry decided it might be a good idea to stop by Paris on the way home from India. And, to show our French friends that America stands beside them in the fight against […]

Next Charlie Hebdo Cover Has Muhammad Saying ‘Je suis Charlie’

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Their editor and nine colleagues dead, their offices destroyed, the newspaper is not missing a beat.

Obama’s Absence From Paris Rally: Egregious Diplomatic Error, Or Much Ado About Nothing?

World Leaders Paris

Some are criticizing the President for not going to Paris for yesterday’s rally.

German Newspaper Firebombed After Republishing Charlie Hebdo Images

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The terrorism wave that began with the massacre at the Charlie Hebdo offices has not ended with the killing of the perpetrators. A follow-on attack has occurred in Germany and there are reports of “sleeper cells” being activated in France.

Charlie Hebdo Suspects Dead After Dual Standoffs

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The men responsible for the Charlie Hebdo massacre are dead, but the problems for France, and the rest of Europe, may just be at the beginning.

Will The Paris Terror Attack Undercut Republican Efforts On DHS Budget?

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The terror attack in Paris seems likely to undercut GOP efforts to use the DHS budget to attack the President’s immigration policies.

Terror Attack Kills 11 at French Satirical Newspaper Charlie Hebdo

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At least 11 are dead and 10 wounded in an attack on free expression.

Did 24 Help Make Torture Acceptable?

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In the wake of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on C.I.A. torture, some have suggested that eight years of Jack Bauer helped make torture more acceptable to the American public.

F.B.I. Charges North Korea With Being Behind Hacking Attacks On Sony

North Korea Military Parade

The U.S. Government has formally charged North Korea with responsibility for the hacking attack on Sony. How to respond to that attack is a more complicated question.

Sony, “The Interview,” and Running Government Like a Business.

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It strike me that the situation with Sony and The Interview is a good example of why you can’t run government like a business. While the US government would have to make calculations about warding off future attacks, national reputations, etc. in the face of terrorist threats, all Sony (And AMC, etc.) had to do […]

Sony Pictures Pulls ‘The Interview’ After Cyber Attacks, Threats; North Korea Suspected

Sony The Interview

With major theater chains having pulled out, Sony bowed to the inevitable, but now there appears to be proof that a foreign power is behind the Sony hacking attacks and threats of violence.

Sony Hacking Scandal Elevates To Threats Of Terrorism If Film Is Released

Sony The Interview

Hackers who have divulged embarrassing secrets from deep within Sony Pictures are now threatening violence if a film about a plot to kill Kim Jong Un is released.

Sowell Deploys a TTBS

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As a follow-on to my post the other day (On Ticking Time Bombs) I see that Thomas Sowell is joining in the fun: If you knew that there was a hidden nuclear time bomb planted somewhere in New York City — set to go off today — and you had a captured terrorist who knew […]

Taliban Attack On Pakistan Kills Up To 126, At Least 100 Children

Pakistan School Attack

A day of terror at a school in Pakistan.

Sydney Hostage Taker Man Haron Monis: Lone Wolf Terrorist, Or Lone Nut? Does It Matter?

APTOPIX Australia Police Operation   TOK801

Was Man Haron Monis a terrorist, or just a lone nut who had latched on to the rhetoric of ISIS to justify his own delusions? In the end, it hardly matters.

On Ticking Time Bombs

Nuclear Explosion

The “ticking time bomb scenario” is a TV trope and, therefore, is a terrible guide for making policy.

The Amorality Of Dick Cheney And The Right In Response To The Truth About C.I.A. Torture

Dick Cheney

Vice-President Cheney’s amoral defense of torture has come to define how most conservatives view the issue, and that’s a problem.

What Does “Linked to Terrorism” Mean?

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A question occurs in response to Doug Mataconis’ post this morning:  what does "linked To terrorism" mean?*   After all, we often want to know if a given act of violence is “terrorism” or not (and we seem, collectively, to react differently if an act is “terrorism” or not). If an armed individual holds hostages because […]

Hostage Crisis In Sydney, Australia Cafe Apparently Linked To Terrorism

APTOPIX Australia Police Operation   TOK801

A hostage crisis has been unfolding overnight at a cafe in Sydney, Australia that has apparent links to international terrorism.

Hayden and “Rectal Hydration”

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Via The Hill:   Ex-CIA director defends rectal rehydration “These were medical procedures,” Hayden said during a tense interview on CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper.” He added that the method was used because detainees were dehydrated, and that giving them intravenous fluids with needles would be dangerous.  ”I’m not a doctor,” he said. “What I […]

Rationalizing Torture

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I would recommend the following (audio only at the moment):  What Is Torture? Our Beliefs Depend In Part On Who’s Doing It. The piece is about social science research on torture and notes, among other things, 1.  Humans are likely to define “torture” differently if it their group doing it versus when other groups do […]

Torture Report’s Long Shadow

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What now?

ISIS? ISIL? Islamic State? How About Daesh?

ISIS Fighters

It appears that American officials are starting to refer to ISIS, which the President had previously principally referred to as ISIL, by an entirely new name: On Wednesday, John Kerry was speaking at NATO headquarters in Belgium during a meeting of the United States-led coalition against the Islamic State extremist group. During his remarks, the secretary of state […]

You are Defending Torture

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So far the only critique of the Senate report has been that the techniques deployed by the CIA did, in fact, produce good and useful intelligence. Setting aside whether that is true or not, keep in mind that such an argument is a defense of torture. I have not seen anyone disputing the actual content […]

Senate Intelligence Committee Report Reveals A Dark and Regrettable Time In American History

Waterboarding

A dark and regrettable time in American history is finally seeing the light of day.

Least Shocking Headline of the Day

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“Dick Cheney Was Lying About Torture” (Politico).

America’s 500th Drone Strike

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The shocking has become routine. We’re no safer because of it.

House Intelligence Committee Benghazi Report Debunks Benghazi Conspiracy Theories

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The House Intelligence Committee has concluded that the conspiracy theories regarding the 9/11/2012 attack in Benghazi are not supported by the evidence. That’s unlikely to change anyone’s mind, though.

Should The U.S. Reconsider Its Policy Of Not Paying Ransom For Hostages?

Journalist beheaded

The idea that the U.S. does not negotiate with terrorists is simply not historically accurate, so should we be reconsidering the policy of not negotiating with ISIS for the release of Western hostages?

ISIS’s New Beheading Video; Casus Belli, Or A Trap?

ISIS Map Iraq Syria

The latest ISIS video is horrible and barbaric but we should not take the bait they are offering before considering the consequences of our actions going forward.

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