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June 27, 2008

1. In Pakistan, the Taliban have surrounded and 'laid siege' to NWFP capital city Peshawar. Government says Army will stay, yet cedes much to Taliban, including roads it does not control, a promise to release 45 Taliban prisoners, and a promise to enforce Sharia law in the province within 3 months. Says both sides 'committed to peace deal.'

2. Congress finalized the War Funding Bill, freeing resources for use in both Iraq and Afghanistan after much delay and political gaming.

3. President Bush announced North Korea will have US sanctions lifted and be removed from State Sponsor of Terror list for dismantling parts of its nuclear program, even as the administration had provided evidence that North Korea had partnered with Syria and Iran to build secret plutonium plant destroyed by Israel in September.

4. Israel-Hizballah prisoner swap deal set for Knesset approval Sunday, as Israel seeks to exchange Lebanese terrorists for two abducted IDF soldiers.

Released Guantanamo detainee behind March suicide truck bombing in Mosul - The Long War Journal

Senate finalizes war funding bill - CNN
Iraq: Bush, Talabani Signal Progress On Thorny Security Pact - RFE/RL
Iraq, US Consider Temporary Measures For Military Operations - WSJ
US names al-Qaeda emir of Mosul killed during raid - The Long War Journal

Israel and Iran: It’s later than you think - Economist
Israeli Foreign Ministry head briefed IAEA envoys in secret - Haaretz
Time running out for nuclear program talks, Iran warns - Los Angeles Times
Syria planned to supply Iran with nuclear fuel, Israel says - The Guardian
In spite of German talk, trade with Iran growing - Haaretz

Israel and Hizballah ready to sign on prisoner swap deal - Haaretz
Rocket hits Israel Thursday, second violation of Gaza truce - Washington Post
Islamic Jihad will sit tight with Hamas in Gaza, Attack from West Bank - Jerusalem Post

No Peace in Lebanon - Commentary Magazine
Background: The end of Lebanese factional fighting? - Jerusalem Post

North Korea destroys reactor cooling tower - Los Angeles Times
U.S. to Take North Korea Off Terror List - NYTimes
Rice: Diplomacy Is Working on North Korea - WSJ
Korean Nukes: Don't Get Giddy - NY Post
Bush Deal on N. Korea Meets Skepticism From Republicans - New York Sun
Background: Photo-evidence that North Korea 'helped build Syrian nuclear reactor' - Daily Mail
Timeline: Nuclear weapons development in North Korea - International Herald Tribune

Taliban lay 'siege' to Peshawar, threatening Pakistan's grip - Times Online
Taliban PPP leader, a tribal elder, and their family members in Swat - Daily Times
Taliban beheads one, shoots another in Bajaur 'spy' executions - BBC
Army 'to stay in NWFP,' but Gov't concedes nearly everything - Daily Times
Pakistan’s failure to pressure Taliban a concern: Gates - Daily Times

Saudis holding 520 al-Qaeda suspects arrested this year - International Herald Tribune

Al-Arian Indicted for Refusal To Testify in Charities Cases - New York Sun

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