By Suzanne Kelly
In the aftermath of the affair that led to the resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus, his biographer and paramour Paula Broadwell has remained publicly silent, turning instead to family and friends as she tries to assess just how news of the affair might impact her future.
"It's been hard for her family and her to see the picture that's being painted of her," says Broadwell's brother, Steve Kranz, a Washington-based attorney. "Her real focus is her family and her husband and her boys and trying to restore the trust she had with her husband and trying to protect her children from the publicity."
After weeks of media portrayals that have ranged from spurned lover to obsessed stalker, both family and friends of Broadwell have begun to present a fuller picture of her as she grapples with the shock of her affair being thrust into the public spotlight. Part of that outreach included providing photos from the family collection, given first to CNN, of Broadwell with her family and in Afghanistan.
"She's trying to live as normal a life as possible, but there are moments of realizing all that has happened," says a source close to Broadwell who asked not to be identified.
Early on, Broadwell began quietly returning emails from well-wishing friends, but she hasn't done much beyond that, according to sources who have said she is very focused on how the news has affected loved ones. But that strategy appears to be shifting somewhat with the hiring of a Washington-based public affairs group and friends who have known Broadwell for years now going public to combat images of her that they feel are unfair. FULL POST
By Barbara Starr
Two Iranian Su-25 fighter jets fired on an unarmed U.S. Air Force Predator drone in the Persian Gulf on November 1, the Pentagon disclosed on Thursday.
The incident, reported first by CNN, raised fresh concerns within the Obama administration about Iranian military aggression in crucial Gulf oil shipping lanes.
The drone was on routine maritime surveillance in international airspace east of Kuwait, 16 miles off the coast of Iran, U.S. officials said. The Predator was not hit.
"Our aircraft was never in Iranian airspace. It was always flying in international air space. The recognized limit is 12 nautical miles off the coast and we never entered the 12 nautical mile limit," Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said in responding to questions from reporters after CNN reported the incident.
Little said the United States believed this was the first time an unmanned aircraft was shot at by the Iranians in international waters over the Gulf. In December of 2011, a U.S. surveillance drone crashed in eastern Iran. Iranians claimed to have shot it down, and created a toy model of the drone to celebrate its capture.
Little stopped short of calling the incident an act of war although the Pentagon was concerned.
By Elise Labott
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is expected to notify Congress on Friday that she plans to take Iranian exile group Mujahedin-e-Khalq, or MEK, off a State Department terror list, three senior Obama administration officials told CNN.
Notification will be followed by formal removal in coming days from the list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations, which includes more than 50 groups like al Qaeda and Hezbollah. Clinton recently designated the Pakistani-based Haqqani network a foreign terrorist organization.
Such a listing attaches a certain stigma and allows the United States to legally go after financing and take other steps against individuals associated with these groups.
By Barbara Starr CNN Pentagon Correspondent
The head of U.S. special operations has contacted members of the covert Navy SEAL team that killed Osama bin Laden to reconfirm some details of the al Qaeda leader's last moments conveyed in a new book, and military officials have concluded the author's account was not accurate, CNN has learned.
Adm. William McRaven took the extraordinary action more than a year after the May 2011 raid in Pakistan in response to "No Easy Day," authored by former SEAL Matt Bissonnette, who tells about his participation in the operation.
In a dramatic passage, Bissonnette said that bin Laden was on the floor when he and other SEALs entered his room in the safe house in Abbottabad, having been shot by another SEAL when he had peeked his head into the hall as the team approached.
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.
By Mike Mount
The U.S. is deciding whether to keep two aircraft carriers in the waters around Iran through the end of the year in a move that risks inflaming tensions with the regime, according to U.S. officials.
The decision entails extending the mandate to maintain an extra carrier in the region by three months, according to U.S. officials.
A 2010 directive by then Secretary of Defense Robert Gates added an additional carrier to the Persian Gulf region where the U.S. typically has kept only one carrier while not in actual full combat operations.
The directive is set to expire in September of this year, but the officials said the White House, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta and top Navy officials are mulling over whether to extend the presence at a time when Iran continues its saber rattling with threats to close the main oil tanker route out of the Arabian Gulf at the Strait of Hormuz as well as its continued insistence to pursue a nuclear program.
by Jamie Crawford
China and Singapore will receive exemptions from U.S. sanctions scheduled to go into effect Thursday that would have cut off banks in those countries from the U.S. financial system for handling Iranian oil transactions, a source in the office of Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) tells Security Clearance.
Secretary of State Clinton called Senator Menendez earlier today to inform him.
Under legislation signed by President Barack Obama In December, the United States will take action against countries that continue buying large volumes of Iranian oil through Iran's Central Bank by cutting off financial institutions engaged in those transactions from the U.S. banking system. FULL POST
Editor's note: Watch Elise Labott's interview with Shimon Peres at 1pET on CNN's Newsroom with Suzanne Malveaux
By Elise Labott, reporting from Jerusalem
Time is running out for a diplomatic solution to Western concerns about Iran's nuclear program, Israeli President Shimon Peres said Monday in an interview with CNN.
He said Iran continues to flout the United Nations and world leaders by pushing forward with work on its nuclear program - including, he said, work on a nuclear weapon. But he said Iranian leaders would be making a costly mistake in believing the threat of military action is an empty one.
"You cannot provoke the world, assuming the world is made of fools only," Peres said.
His comments come at the start of talks in Moscow between Iran and the group of nations that have taken the lead on the issue: the United States, France, Britain, Russia, China and Germany. Peres is not attending the meetings.
The International Atomic Energy Agency and Western leaders have expressed concern about Iran's nuclear effort, including its uranium enrichment program and possible work toward a nuclear weapon. Iranian leaders have repeatedly said the work is purely peaceful. FULL POST
By Barbara Starr
The Obama administration will stick with the election-year tradition of both Democratic and Republican White Houses in offering presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney classified intelligence briefings only after he formally secures his party's nomination at the convention this summer.
"It's a long-standing practice for presidential candidates and select advisers to be provided intelligence briefings following the party's nominating convention," Shawn Turner, the spokesman for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, told Security Clearance. "During the last presidential campaign, all the candidates began receiving briefings in September following the conventions."