U.S. contemplating 'an Assad aftermath'
File photo of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
July 23rd, 2012
05:12 PM ET

U.S. contemplating 'an Assad aftermath'

By Barbara Starr

Senior level Obama administration officials are now holding regular high-level meetings to discuss the ongoing situation in Syria and begin thinking about U.S. priorities in a post-Assad era, a senior U.S. official told CNN Monday.

"We are in the early stages of contemplating an Assad aftermath," the official said. While Syria has been a top priority for months, the official said specific concerns about the security situation in Syria have grown in recent days.

"The meetings are being convened to discuss the current situation and ensure that we are doing all we can as the crisis has worsened," the official said. "The intensity of the discussions has grown. The level of concern has increased considerably."

FULL POST

Arrest made in fire that caused $400 million in damage to submarine
Kittrey, Maine (March 15, 2012) The Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Miami enters dry dock to begin an overhaul at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.
July 23rd, 2012
02:27 PM ET

Arrest made in fire that caused $400 million in damage to submarine

By Mike Mount, Senior National Security Producer

A civilian worker has been arrested and charged in connection with a fire that caused $400 million in damage to a U.S. Navy submarine last May, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office inMaine.

Casey James Fury, 24, was arrested by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service on suspicion of setting the massive blaze and setting a second fire around the submarine last month, according to a criminal complaint from the U.S. District Court of Maine released to the public Monday.

FULL POST

Cagefighter 'cures' terrorists
July 23rd, 2012
01:34 PM ET

Cagefighter 'cures' terrorists

In past months, dozens of convicted terrorists have been released in the UK, including onto the same London streets. Seldom since 9/11 has al Qaeda, though weakened, had such an opportunity to create carnage on the global stage.  At the same time a no-holds barred fight for security is under way. It is unorthodox, but British officials say it is working, producing results which have never been seen before - and at its epicenter is a veteran Muslim cagefighter.

Over the last six months Usman Raja gave CNN's Nic Robertson and CNN terrorism analyst Paul Cruickshank exclusive access to his pioneering efforts; speaking for the first time about his work with former terrorists.

Read their phenomenal reporting:

FULL POST

July 23rd, 2012
10:58 AM ET

EXCLUSIVE: Iran in "open war" with Israel

By Elise Labott and Michael Schwartz

Iran is in an "open war" with Israel, President Shimon Peres said Monday, as he pointed the finger at Iran and Hezbollah for last week's bombing in Bulgaria that killed five Israelis.

In an exclusive interview with CNN, Peres said Israel will act to prevent further attacks.

Peres said Israel has "enough" hard intelligence to link the Bulgaria attack to Iran and its proxy Hezbollah, and believes more attacks are being planned as part of what he called an "open war against Israel."

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said that Iran and the Lebanon-based Hezbollah movement were responsible for a number of attacks and attempted attacks against Israeli targets in Thailand, Georgia, India, Greece, Cyprus and other countries.
FULL POST

How feds determined no nexus to terrorism in Colorado
Century 16 Theater in Aurora. CO where gunman attacked movie goers
July 23rd, 2012
12:01 AM ET

How feds determined no nexus to terrorism in Colorado

By Pam Benson

As soon as counterterrorism and law enforcement officials got word of the shootings in Aurora, Colorado, an interagency process to search for a possible terrorism link was set in motion.

Little was known about James Holmes, the suspected shooter. But within hours of the incident, U.S. officials told CNN there appeared to be no nexus to terrorism.

The determination certainly does not stop the public debate over whether the mass shooting should be considered terroacts.  But so far, there is no indication Holmes was on any of the various intelligence or law enforcement agencies' radar screens. But investigators will certainly look at all of his communications and all of his personal electronic devices to see if he was in any way inspired by extremists.

In the post-September 11, whenever an incident like an indiscriminate mass shooting takes place, the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), the FBI and other government agencies immediately kick into high gear, scrubbing all of their databases to see if there is a terrorism connection.

FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: CIA • Intelligence • Terrorism