December 9th, 2011
07:33 PM ET

Missing American's captors emailed from AfPak region

By National Correspondent Susan Candiotti

A US government official tells CNN that at least one email sent to the family of retired FBI agent Bob Levinson by captors holding him hostage
is believed to have originated in internet cafes in Pakistan or Afghanistan.

Levinson's exact location remains a mystery.  In March, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a statement that the U.S. had "received recent indications that Bob is being held somewhere in southwest Asia."

At least two meetings have taken place between Iran and the United States to free Levinson, according to the same US government official
who declined to be identified because of sensitivities surrounding efforts to find the retired FBI agent.  The emergence of the proof of life last year fueled a fresh round of "discussions" between the United States and Iran, a senior diplomatic official told Susan Candiotti and Elise Labott back in March.

The discussions, not equivalent to negotiations, were described as "working level," meaning it was not conducted by senior administration officials, the official said.

The United States is awaiting action by Iran and is hopeful progress is being made, the official said.

It's unclear how or when these meetings took place, and would certainly be unusual given that the two countries have no diplomatic relations.

Since Levinson disappeared, the U-S government has said repeatedly that it hopes Iran would provide help to find out what happened to Levinson who was last seen on Iran's Kish island in 2007.. Levinson's wife and son also travelled to Iran seeking information about him.

Post by:
Filed under: Clinton • Iran • State Department
December 9th, 2011
06:10 PM ET

Blunt talk on Pakistan from U.S. military

By Charley Keyes

U.S. relations with Pakistan in the wake of last month's NATO attack on a border post are "a mess," America's highest-ranking officer said Friday.

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Martin Dempsey, dismissed Pakistani government claims that the attack was planned.

"What I can say, absolutely, and I can't imagine anyone in this room wouldn't believe me: We did not attack a border post, a Pakistan military border post, intentionally," Dempsey said in a speech in Washington. "If you think we did, I'd have to ask you in return, what in the world would we hope to gain by doing that? So I can say that categorically."

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Military • NATO • Pakistan • Panetta • Panetta • Pentagon • Secretary of Defense
December 9th, 2011
01:50 PM ET

From military base to ghost town

As the military heads to the exits, the U.S. is leaving behind the remnants of its eight year war.  Martin Savidge went to what was once a major U.S. base in southern Iraq, Camp Adder, which is now fading away.

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Filed under: Iraq • Military
The last days of a suicide bomber
Investigators say Taimour Abdulwahab set a car on fire and detonated a bomb attached to his body in 2010 in Stockholm.
December 9th, 2011
09:26 AM ET

The last days of a suicide bomber

By Paul Cruickshank, Tim Lister and Per Nyberg

He was the father of two small children and lived an ordinary life in a drab English town. Most of his family, originally from Iraq, had settled peacefully in Sweden. But unknown to any of them, Taimour Abdulwahab had embraced jihad - and was planning to blow himself up among Christmas shoppers in the Swedish capital.

Abdulwahab's last steps and contacts offer further evidence that "the lone wolf" terrorist is very difficult to identify. But they also show that - even with training - the lone suicide-bomber faces serious challenges in carrying out an attack. FULL POST