April 23rd, 2012
06:56 PM ET

Egypt's request to arrest Americans rejected by Interpol

By Libby Lewis

Interpol says it is removing Egypt's arrest notices for a dozen American pro-democracy workers from its international database after ruling that they violate Interpol's ban on getting involved with political cases.

In addition, Interpol said in a statement released Monday it has refused to issue formal Red Notices for the pro-democracy workers on Egypt's behalf.

Last week, Security Clearance reported that Egypt filed the arrest notices for some of the American pro-democracy workers who have been charged with working for unlicensed organizations and using foreign funds to do their work. FULL POST

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Filed under: Egypt • NGO
April 20th, 2012
04:15 PM ET

Timing of Egypt's arrest request questioned

By Libby Lewis

Egyptian officials have filed global arrest notices with Interpol for some of the Americans charged for overstepping in their pro-democracy work in Egypt, sources familiar with the matter tell CNN.

(Listen to a radio version of Libby Lewis' report here)

Officially, nobody's talking about this politically sensitive topic - that goes for the U.S. government, the Egyptian government, and Interpol.

But some are questioning the timing of the notices, issued just after the Obama administration agreed to restart more than $1 billion in aid to Egypt, over objections from members of Congress angered that the Egyptians had pursued a case against the workers for non-governmental organizations.

"I find the case a shocking example of how Interpol is open to abuse by countries which are seeking to prosecute - not sex traffickers or drug dealers - but people campaigning for democratic reform," said Jago Russell of Fair Trials International, a human rights group. He noted that such action "was not the desired intention of Interpol," but added that "the lack of safeguards in the way Interpol works means it's happening in practice."

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Filed under: Security Brief
Defense budget magic
February 10th, 2012
12:07 PM ET

Defense budget magic

By Libby Lewis (Listen to an audio version of the story here

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta hasn't revealed much so far about his department's budget proposal  for the next fiscal year. But he has offered a peek at some numbers, like this one: $88.4 billion for war funding.

When he shared that figure last month, a reporter asked: "Given that, a year ago, we had sizable numbers of troops in Iraq, and the numbers are coming down in Afghanistan ... why is it still so high?"

Panetta responded that it's partly due to the high cost of the war in Afghanistan.

The war is expensive, true, but some defense budget experts say there may be also be some defense budget magic going on. It's a magic made possible by two things. FULL POST

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Budget • Military • Panetta
Bradley Manning and the need to share
December 22nd, 2011
04:00 AM ET

Bradley Manning and the need to share

By Libby Lewis

Listen to Libby Lewis' report for CNN Radio:

So many questions are swirling around Bradley Manning as the military holds a hearing to present evidence about his alleged crimes. (See the rest of our Bradley Manning coverage here)

Perhaps the biggest question raised about Manning is: How did this troubled young man - and a low-ranking one at that - get to handle such sensitive information with the ease of a kid pirating Lady Gaga?

Ron Marks, who spent 16 years with the CIA, says that to understand what made it possible for Manning to get his hands on so much, you have to go back to Vietnam.
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Filed under: Bradley Manning • Intelligence • Military • WikiLeaks