43 years later, Medal of Honor for newlywed hero's sacrifice
May 15th, 2012
08:12 PM ET

43 years later, Medal of Honor for newlywed hero's sacrifice

By Larry Shaughnessy

Rose Mary Sabo Brown spent just 30 days with her new husband, Army Spec. Leslie Sabo Jr., before he shipped out to fight in Vietnam. But from that month together in 1969 grew a lifetime of love.

"We got married in September, he got to come home that weekend and we spent the night together and he had to go back to Georgia the next day," Brown told CNN. After that, Sabo was off to training before returning home for 30 days that fall.

"We only had that one month together as a married couple," she told CNN. "He left for Vietnam and I never saw him again."
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Filed under: Medal of Honor
May 15th, 2012
02:54 PM ET

Military limits F-22 flights after oxygen issues

The military is taking new measures as it tries to determine the root cause of possible oxygen-supply problems in the F-22 fighter jet.

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has mandated that all F-22 flights "remain within the proximity of potential landing locations" to ensure the ability to recover and land should a pilot run into "unanticipated physiological conditions," Pentagon spokesman George Little said on Tuesday.

In addition, the Air Force is speeding up the installation of an automatic backup oxygen system in all the fighters, Little also announced a Pentagon press conference.

Panetta also has requested a monthly progress report about the service's progress in finding the cause of the oxygen problems on the fighter jets.

The Air Force has been looking into a number of reports that pilots experienced "hypoxia-like symptoms" aboard F-22s since April 2008. FULL POST

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Filed under: Air Force • Defense Spending • F-22 • Military
May 15th, 2012
12:53 PM ET

NATO invites Pakistan to Chicago summit

Editor's note: Read all of Security Clearance's coverage of the 2012 NATO summit in Chicago

With reporting from Elise Labott

NATO has invited Pakistani President Asif Zardari to join the Afghanistan summit in Chicago this week, even as the Afghan neighbor continues to weigh whether to re-open its border crossings for war supplies.

Farhatullah Babar, a presidential spokesman, confirmed the invitation Tuesday, saying it was unconditional and was not linked to the opening of ground lines of communication for NATO or to any other issue. He said Zardari would consider the invitation in light of guidelines from Pakistan's parliament and the advice of the government.

Recommended: Peter Bergen on "G8 and NATO-thon"

The president said a decision about the invitation will be communicated to NATO later.

The invitation comes just days after NATO Secretary General Fogh Rasmussen suggested that the neighbor of Afghanistan would not be included because of the continued closure of Pakistan's border with Afghanistan to war supplies. FULL POST

EU airstrikes on Somali pirate targets
May 15th, 2012
10:22 AM ET

EU airstrikes on Somali pirate targets

European Union naval forces on Tuesday struck Somali pirate targets on the coast of the country in the first raids by the European force on the Somali mainland.

"We believe this action by the EU Naval Force will further increase the pressure on, and disrupt pirates' efforts to get out to sea to attack merchant shipping and dhows," Rear Adm. Duncan Potts, operational commander of the force, said in a statement.

Several pirate attack skiffs, the small boats pirates use to attack merchant vessels in the open ocean, were destroyed in the raid, said Timo Lange, media officer at the naval force's headquarters in England.

No Somalis were injured in the raid, which was conducted entirely by air, the force's statement said.

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Filed under: Africa • EU • Piracy • Somalia
The frustrated spy
May 15th, 2012
02:00 AM ET

The frustrated spy

By Suzanne Kelly

"The Art of Intelligence" - the new memoir of former U.S. spy Hank Crumpton - lays out not only the sexier side of that life, but also the inherent frustration that often comes with it.

Crumpton's was a frustration decades in the making, from his time as a clandestine officer recruiting agents in dark corners of Africa to taking a leading role in the CIA's effort to blaze a pathway to justice in Afghanistan after the attacks of September 11.

His tactics and methods earned him a reputation not only in the tribal regions of Afghanistan, but inside the Washington Beltway as well, where he often sparred with policymakers over what he thought he needed to do his job and what they thought he needed to do his job.

In 2005 though, he took off the spy hat and tried his hand at joining the diplomats.

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Thousands amass in Jordan for major military exercise
May 15th, 2012
02:00 AM ET

Thousands amass in Jordan for major military exercise

Editor's Note:  Barbara Starr is in Jordan covering the Eager Lion 2012 exercise.  Read her reporting here.  Watch her reports on Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer (4pET-6pET).

By Barbara Starr

U.S. Department of Defense photo

It couldn't come at a more delicate time in the Middle East. No one will say it publicly, but the Eager Lion 2012 exercise - and the 12,000 multinational forces gathering in Jordan - are sending a not-so-quiet message to others in the region: they are ready for whatever comes.

From now until the end of May, one of the largest multinational military exercises the region has seen is taking place in Jordan. There are more than 19 nations, including the United States and a number of Arab and European allies, gathering to practice their combat skills, just in case.

Several U.S. military officials say while it's not the primary intention, the exercise is meant to be noticed by Syria and Iran especially. The message: even with the United States out of Iraq, and winding up the war in Afghanistan, there is a formidable U.S. presence in the region, and other countries are capable of filling in the gaps.

The U.S. Navy already is keeping two aircraft carriers in the next-door Persian Gulf region, and stepping up the presence of minesweepers in those waters. The Air Force has sent half a dozen F-22 fighters to the United Arab Emirates. The Joint Special Operations Command has conducted several deadly drone strikes against al Qaeda in Yemen. FULL POST

Growing concern over jihadist ‘safe haven’ in eastern Libya
The city of Derna, Libya
May 15th, 2012
12:01 AM ET

Growing concern over jihadist ‘safe haven’ in eastern Libya

By Nic Robertson, Paul Cruickshank and Tim Lister, CNN

Diplomats and other observers in Libya say that with elections one month away, the National Transitional Council is struggling to exert control over various militia prominent in the uprising against Moammar Gadhafi. The situation is further complicated by tribal rivalries and a growing presence of Islamist militants in some areas.

One source briefed by Western intelligence officials says of particular concern is the city of Derna on the Mediterranean coast some 160 miles (300 kilometers) west of the Egyptian border. The source tells CNN that hundreds of Islamist militants are present in and around the town, and there are camps where weapons and physical training are provided to militants. He said one official had described the area as "a disaster zone."

Tensions have grown between local people and the militants. Last month, a number of Derna residents went to a camp on the outskirts of the city, according to the source, and forced militants to leave.

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