Mark's Feed
May 23, 2013

Man linked to Boston bombing suspect killed by FBI in Florida

/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Chechen immigrant who was being questioned about his possible links to one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects was shot and killed by a federal agent in Florida on Wednesday after he suddenly turned violent, the FBI said.

A friend of the dead man identified him to Reuters as 27-year-old Ibragim Todashev, who had previously lived in Boston and knew Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the older of the two brothers suspected of planting two bombs at the marathon on April 15, killing three people and injuring 264.

May 22, 2013

U.S. acknowledges killing four Americans in drone strikes

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. government formally acknowledged for the first time on Wednesday that it had killed four Americans, including militant cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, who died in drone strikes in Yemen and Pakistan.

Attorney General Eric Holder named the dead U.S. citizens in a letter to members of Congress a day before President Barack Obama is expected to promise more transparency on national security issues in a speech on counterterrorism.

May 22, 2013

FBI says man shot dead while being questioned about Boston bombings

By Barbara Liston and Mark Hosenball

ORLANDO, Fla./WASHINGTON. (Reuters) – An FBI agent shot and killed a Florida man who turned violent while being questioned about the Boston Marathon bombings early on Wednesday, the bureau said.

A friend of the dead man told the Orlando Sentinel and Orlando television stations that he was 27-year-old Ibragim Todashev of Orlando, a Chechen who had previously lived in Boston. Two brothers identified by the FBI as suspects in the April 15 bombings were also ethnic Chechens with roots in Russia’s volatile North Caucasus region.

May 21, 2013

Pentagon to take over some CIA drone operations : sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s administration has decided to give the Pentagon control of some drone operations against terrorism suspects overseas that are currently run by the CIA, several U.S. government sources said on Monday.

Obama has pledged more transparency on controversial counterterrorism programs, and giving the Pentagon the responsibility for part of the drone program could open it to greater congressional oversight.

May 17, 2013

White House fights and loses battle to withhold Benghazi records

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s White House fought and lost a battle to avoid making public what it claimed were confidential records of internal deliberations over the attack on a U.S. diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya last September.

Obama administration officials portray their unsuccessful effort to avoid disclosing the records as the end result of a process of “accommodation” which the government’s executive branch routinely uses to respond to frequent requests and subpoenas by Congress for sensitive materials.

May 16, 2013

New York says breaks cigarette-smuggling ring linked to militants

By Mark Hosenball

(Reuters) – Fifteen men of Palestinian origin have been arrested on charges of running a multi-million-dollar cigarette smuggling ring in New York, and New York authorities who announced the arrests on Thursday said several of the suspects have ties to Hamas and other Islamist militant groups.

The men are accused of smuggling more than a million cartons of untaxed cigarettes from Virginia to be sold in grocery stores across New York, with $55 million in sales uncovered so far, Eric Schneiderman, the New York attorney general, and Ray Kelly, the New York City police commissioner, said at a press conference.

May 15, 2013

AP records seizure just latest step in sweeping U.S. leak probe

WASHINGTON May 15 (Reuters) – The Justice Department’s
controversial decision to seize phone records of Associated
Press journalists was just one element in a sweeping U.S.
government investigation into media leaks about a Yemen-based
plot to bomb a U.S. airliner, government officials said on
Wednesday.

The search for who leaked the information is being led by
the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington and has involved
extensive FBI interviews of personnel at the Justice Department,
U.S. intelligence agencies, the White House’s National Security
staff and the FBI itself.

May 11, 2013

Pressure rises on White House over Benghazi talking points

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s administration fought back on Friday against Republican accusations that it covered up details of last year’s deadly assault on a U.S. mission in Libya, after a news report that memos on the incident were edited to omit a CIA warning of a threat posed by al Qaeda.

The report by ABC News gave new momentum to the highly partisan flap over whether the administration tried to avoid casting the September 11, 2012, attack as terrorism at a time when the presidential election was less than two months away.

May 10, 2013

Benghazi emails put pressure on White House

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration denied Republican accusations of a cover-up in last year’s deadly attack in Libya, moving on Friday to defuse a renewed political controversy after a news report said memos on the incident were edited to omit references to a CIA warning of an al Qaeda threat.

ABC News reported emails between the White House, State Department and intelligence agencies about the Benghazi attack went through 12 extensive revisions and were scrubbed clean of warnings about a militant threat.

May 10, 2013

Pressure rises on White House after Benghazi emails

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration denied Republican accusations of a cover-up in last year’s deadly attack in Libya, moving on Friday to defuse a renewed political controversy after a news report said memos on the incident were edited to omit references to a CIA warning of an al Qaeda threat.

ABC News reported emails between the White House, State Department and intelligence agencies about the Benghazi attack went through 12 extensive revisions and were scrubbed clean of warnings about a militant threat.