national security

President Obama at the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office
Pete Souza / The White House

President Obama touts diplomacy as a characterizing trait of his administration, but his actions reveal a mix of diplomatic persuasion and the coercive use of force.

New York Times national security correspondent David Sanger says President Obama prioritizes minimizing global conflict, but the president’s increased-yet-subtle application of force contrasts the previous administration’s foreign policy decisions.

Already reeling from reports about alleged drug use by some officers in its nuclear missile corps and the alleged "drunken and inappropriate behavior" of that command's top general, the Air Force now has another scandal on its hands.

News keeps breaking about the alleged electronic surveillance done by U.S. spy agencies. Thursday's exclusive comes from The New York Times:

Some of the electronic surveillance programs of the National Security Agency have been on "automatic pilot" in recent years and have inappropriately "reached too far," Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday.

Kerry's comments are causing something of a stir.

This morning's provocative stories about the spying that the National Security Agency has been doing in recent years include this attention-grabber from the Los Angeles Times:

With all the talk of spying by the National Security Agency, it's easy to forget the government engages in off-line surveillance, too. In the last few years, the feds have expanded efforts to collect tips about people's behavior in the real world; they're called suspicious activity reports.

Hal Bergman, a freelance photographer in Los Angeles, has a fondness for industrial scenes, bridges, ports and refineries.

The email service allegedly used by "NSA leaker" Edward Snowden is no more.

The owner and operator of Lavabit, which encrypts communication between two people, shut down the site and left a cryptic message on its homepage.

Joshua Landis offers an update about the situation in Syria, and how chemical weapons affect the public’s view of the civil war. The panel also talks about the Edward Snowden case and the complexities of asylum and extradition.

Stigler, Oklahoma native Pamela Olson moved to Palestine  after she graduated in 2002. She settled in Ramallah, where she worked as the head writer and editor for the Palestine MonitorShe just wrote a book about her experiences called Fast Times in Palestine.

Voice of America / Wikimedia Commons

The Obama administration appears to be trying to demote Edward Snowden's status to that of a common fugitive unworthy of extraordinary pursuit.

During a visit to Africa, Obama said Thursday that Snowden's case was "not exceptional from a legal perspective."

The University of Oklahoma's Center for Middle East Studies Director Joshua Landis says what he finds most perplexing is the public’s attitude toward Snowden.

Russian President Vladimir Putin appeared to rebuff the United States when he said NSA leaker Edward Snowden was in Moscow but is a "free person" who is "entitled to buy a ticket and fly to wherever he wants."

Snowden, Putin said, is in the transit zone of Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport and has neither crossed the Russian border nor "committed any crime" on Russian soil.

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