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Kaine Raps Justification for War on Islamic State

One US senator believes his colleagues will provide funds to fight the Islamic State (IS) group, but he wants the strikes to cease unless Congress formally authorizes them. Democrat Tim Kaine of Virginia, a member of the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations committees, predicts Congress will inflate the 2015 overseas contingency operations (OCO) budget during a November-December lame duck ... Read More »

With National Security Emerging as Top Issue, Candidates Adjust Strategies

The shifting politics of foreign policy has scrambled the calculations for both parties ahead of the November elections. It has put some Senate candidates, unaccustomed to talking about national security issues, in an uncomfortable position, while elevating others with military experience and foreign policy bona fides. Candidates’ past votes, comments, and even their biographies are emerging as huge opportunities in ... Read More »

Abu Qatada cleared of terror charges

Radical Muslim cleric Abu Qatada has been released from prison after being found not guilty of terrorism offences by a court in Jordan. Judges said there was “insufficient evidence” to convict him of planning a thwarted terrorist plot against tourists and diplomats during Jordan’s Millennium celebrations. He was deported from the UK in 2013. Britain’s Home Office said he was ... Read More »

Startling Sight Where Blasts Are the Norm

When the predawn blasts rattled their windows and jolted them from sleep, residents of Raqqa, the Syrian city that is the de facto capital of the Islamic State, thought they were in for a new round of airstrikes from the Syrian government. But as the sun rose, it was quickly clear that something altogether different had taken place. A drone ... Read More »

While Syrian Volunteers Seek Support, Crisis Worsens at Home

Raed Saleh woke up in his Manhattan hotel room at 8 a.m. on Tuesday to news of airstrikes at home in Syria. His colleagues with the Syria Civil Defense sent him an email to say they had spent five hours digging out the dead from debris in Kafer Darian, a village near the Turkish border. Eight people were killed, they ... Read More »

UAE Central Bank Hits Refresh with New Governor

This week’s shake-up at the United Arab Emirates’ central bank could have a big impact on local financial-system oversight, but the ripples might not spread as far as they normally do when a policy-setting chief is replaced. Sultan Al Suwaidi, the long-serving central bank governor, was replaced by Mubarak Rashid Al Mansouri via a presidential decree. But while the move ... Read More »

NATO urged to embed cyber defence into mission planning

NATO needs to further simplify its networks to minimise the risk of cyber intrusion, while embedding cyber defence as a permanent feature of exercise and mission planning, according to the NATO’s top cyber security official. The alliance will also be exploring ways to boost two-way information exchanges with industry, Jamie Shea, NATO Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges, ... Read More »

German police raid flats, mosque over suspected Islamic State ties

German authorities raided a mosque, an Islamic community center and radical Islamists’ flats in cities across Germany on Tuesday on suspicion of having connections to militants in Syria. The suspects, belonging to the ultra-conservative Salafist movement, are aged between 23 and 36 and police believe they were planning a violent attack although they made no arrests. “We will not stand ... Read More »

Putin Renames Police Unit After Bloody Cheka Founder Dzerzhinsky

President Vladimir Putin signed a decree restoring the title “Dzerzhinsky Division” to an elite police unit that was previously named after the founder of the Bolshevik secret police, the Interior Ministry’s internal troops press service said Monday. Felix Dzerzhinsky founded the Cheka, a security apparatus notorious for orchestrating mass summary executions during the Russian Civil War and the Red Terror. ... Read More »

Russia Moves to Extend Control of Media

Russia’s Parliament passed a preliminary bill on Tuesday that would limit foreign ownership of Russian media outlets to 20 percent, targeting several prominent publications critical of the government and extending the Kremlin’s control over the nation’s independent news media. The country’s top business daily, Vedomosti, the Russian edition of Forbes and dozens of other news, society and fashion magazines would ... Read More »

Gazprom, Hungary Talk Natural Gas Supply, South Stream in Budapest

Hungary and Russian natural gas firm OAO Gazprom GAZP.RS -3.54% on Monday discussed natural gas supplies for Hungary this winter and the planned construction of a natural gas pipeline dubbed South Stream as Budapest appears to be unharmed by the shortage of Russian gas some countries experienced amid the separatist conflict in Ukraine. Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who earlier ... Read More »

US, S Korean sources suggest North has SLBM ambitions

US and South Korean sources have claimed that North Korea is building a tube capable of firing a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), a move that could potentially give Pyongyang a second strike nuclear capability. US officials disclosed to the Washington Free Beacon in late August that “a missile launch tube on a North Korean submarine was recently observed by US ... Read More »

Philippines Concerned About China, Leader Says

The president of the Philippines expressed concern on Tuesday about what he called the “hot to cold” messages from China in the protracted territorial disputes with his country — and others in the region — over areas of the South China Sea. In an interview, the president, Benigno S. Aquino III, who was visiting to attend a United Nations summit ... Read More »

Valiant Shield wraps up

An estimated 18,000 servicemembers wrapped up Valiant Shield in Guam Tuesday. The biennial maneuvers, which began Sept. 15, included personnel from the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps, according to a statement from the U.S. Pacific Fleet. The exercise featured the Air-Sea Battle concept, which aims to overcome an enemy force’s attempt to deny access and maneuverability within sea ... Read More »