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Search Tags: Pentagon & Beyond
Al Qaida latest terror plot has a huge impact without them even launching an attack. That according to intelligence and law enforcement officials all over the world is one of the big pay-offs for Al Qaida and other terrorist groups involved in the recent Embassy plots overseas. Authorities say the main goal of these groups is to frighten people, force governments to spend money and resources to react to the plots, and to achieve publicity for themselves.
The Pacific Ocean is big enough for both the U.S. China. That's what the Chinese Secretary of Defense says. But posturing between the U.S. and China seems to suggest something different. During a joint news conference at the Pentagon Gen. Chang Wanquan agreed with US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel t that there is room for greater U.S.-China military cooperation, including joint exercises and high-level visits.
US drones in Iraq. They've been there before. But could they be there again? Iraq's top diplomat wants them there to help fight Al Qaida. Iraqi's foreign minister is Hoshyar Zebari says Iraqi forces need U.S. help with surveillance and analyzing intelligence. He suggests that an unspecified but limited number of American counterterror advisers could be stationed in Iraq to help its military deter a recent spike in deadly attacks.
A top U.S. military official says Afghanistan, even after foreign troops have left will remain dependent on international troops for security many years to come. U.S. General Joseph Dunford, the U.S. commander of the NATO-led force told Reuters, he argued for a significant presence after the U.S.-dominated International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) is disbanded next year. Reuters reports, "the White House favors about 7,000 U.S. troops, but some in the U.S. military would prefer two or three times as many."
When US forces leave Afghanistan next year, the absence of the counter-balance will be noticed. Pakistan-based militants say they will attack India once Western troops leave Afghanistan in 2014. That will likely increase tensions between India and Pakistan, both of which have nuclear weapons. The threats were made by Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), blamed for the 2008 commando-style raid on Mumbai that killed 166 people.
The Associated Press is reporting that "a year before he was caught on an intercept discussing the terror plot that prompted this week's sweeping closure of United States embassies abroad, al-Qaida's top operative in Yemen laid out his blueprint for how to wage jihad in letters sent to a fellow terrorist. In what reads like a lesson plan, Nasser al-Wahishi provides a step-by-step assessment of what worked and what didn't in Yemen. But in the rare correspondence discovered by the Associated Press, the man at the center of the latest terror threat barely mentions the extremist methods that transformed his organization into al-Qaida's most dangerous branch."
Just back from a trip to Egypt, Sen. John McCain is expressing concern that Egypt may be headed toward a period of prolonged violence if the Arab country's military and the Muslim Brotherhood cannot start a political dialogue, according to the Associate Press. McCain and fellow Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham pressed their case over meetings this week with Egypt's top army brass, interim political leaders, youth groups and allies of Egypt's ousted and now imprisoned president, Mohammed Morsi. The AP says McCain acknowledged that top Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi was unhappy with some of the "straightforward" suggestions they offered.
The U.S. Navy is going to deactivate a nuclear-powered submarine damaged by an arsonist last year rather than repair it, saying the $700 million repair cost could not be justified in a time of tight budgets.
The decision to scrap the USS Miami nuclear attack submarine, which had been scheduled for another decade of service, is another example of the choices facing the Pentagon as it attempts to deal with large huge across-the-board budget cuts.
Al-Qaeda in the Arabian is a militant Islamist organization, primarily active in Yemen and Saudi Arabia. AQAP was formed in January 2009 from a merger of al Qaeda's Yemeni and Saudi branches. It's widely believed to be the most dangerous of all Al Qaida branches. It's leadership has been responsible for several high profile bomb attempts against the U.S. It has also has been a frequent target.
A dozen Republican and Democratic senators are calling on the Pentagon to cancel all contracts to buy helicopters for Afghan security forces from a state-run Russian arms exporter that is a top weapons supplier to the Syrian government. Led by Republican Sen. John Cornyn (KOHR'-nihn) of Texas, they sent a letter on Monday to Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff about the Mi-17 Helicopters.