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February 8, 2010

1. As Iran announces that it will begin higher-level uranium enrichment, SecDef Gates nullifies "all options on the table" stance by declaring sanctions, which have never worked, are the "only path left" to stop Iran.

2. Afghan President Karzai states he wants US transition to Afghan forces to begin by end of year. Afghan forces incapable, demonstrated by arrest of senior police official for role in roadside bombs.

3. SecState Clinton claims Obama administration Iran, Korea stances yielding "benefits." Curiously, Yonhap News reports Germany told South Korea to perpare for earlier than expected reunification with North.

4. In mere formality, Somali terrorist group al-Shabaab (The Youth) officially aligned with al-Qaeda. Group's leadership had deep AQ ties even before formation.

5. As France finalizes deal to sell Russia helicopter carrier warships, President Dmitri Medvedev declares NATO "Russia's greatest threat" and welcomes leaders of the Palestinian terrorist group HAMAS to the Kremlin.

AL QAEDA
Al-Qaeda is a wounded but dangerous enemy - Washington Post
Al-Qaeda threat to US greater than Iran: Clinton - AFP
Yemen's al-Qaeda calls for jihad in region - Washington Post
AQ in Yemen may send American jihadis, recruited by Anwar al-Awlaki, to attack US - NY Daily News
Last Week: Yemen Commitment to Al Qaeda Fight Not Clear - CIA - New York Times
British intel: Breast implants may hide bombs - Detroit Free Press

AFGHANISTAN
More Demands: Karzai wants Afghanistan security handover to begin this year - CNN
Afghans Not Close To Being Ready: Senior Afghan policeman held over planting bombs - BBC
Pakistani Military Sets Afghan Terms, Calls for Top Taliban Negotiations - Asia Times
NATO: Others should do more in Afghanistan - UPI
Taliban make children plant Afghanistan bombs - SOS Children

CHINA
The News: China Heralds Bust of Major Hacker Ring - Wall Street Journal
The Context: Rising skill of Chinese cyberattacks alarms West - Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette
The History: China's cyber army is preparing to march on America, says Pentagon (2007) - Times (UK)
The Background: China's Cyber Forces: People's Liberation Army (2008) - DefenseTech
Trading (Economic) Barbs With China - Wall Street Journal
US more at ease with India's rise than China's ascent - Times of India

IRAN
Iran to enrich uranium to higher levels, build 10 nuclear plants, beef up military - Los Angeles Times
Gates Scoffs at Iran Nuclear Claim - New York Times
SecDef Takes "All Options" Off Table? Gates: Sanctions On Iran The Only Path Left - Reuters
Germany says Iran 'not prepared to cooperate' - Khaleej Times (UAE)
Iran builds own aerial drones with strike capabilities - RIA Novosti (Russia)
Report: Iran cites CIA in Radio Farda arrests - CNNi
Iranian Nobel Prize winner backs fresh street protests in Iran - Telegraph (UK)

IRAQ
Iraqi official's top aide linked to Shi'ite terrorists - Washington Times
Female Parliament candidate gunned down in Mosul - AFP
Iraq inquiry: Jack Straw denies ignoring legal advice on war - Telegraph (UK)

ISRAEL
Terrorists Playing To Western Sensibilitites: Hamas "regrets" civilian deaths, Israel unmoved - Reuters
Devastating war between Israel & Hizballah is on the horizon - Analyst Network
Iran's Quest for African Allies Troublesome for Israel - Economist

NORTH KOREA
Clinton: Obama's Iran, Korea stance shows benefits - UPI
Benefits, Last Week: North Korean Arms Were Headed to Iran, Thailand Report Says - Business Week
The Race: Germany advises S. Korea to prepare for early inter-Korean reunification - Yonhap News Agency
North Korea Says It Will Release 'Repentant' US Missionary - VOA

PAKISTAN
Pakistan Army Recaptures NW Taliban Stronghold - VOA
Context repeated from Above: Pakistani Military Sets Afghan Terms - Asia Times
Karachi violence blow to Pakistan economy - AFP
India offers to revive talks with Pakistan - Los Angeles Times

PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES
Iran Supreme Leader Meets Palestinian PIJ Terror Leaders: Praises, Predicts Fall of Israel - Tehran Times (Regime-run)

RUSSIA
Russian President Medvedev declares NATO to be Russia's 'Greatest Threat' - The News (Poland)
France Agrees to Helo Carrier Warship Sale to Russia - Reuters
OpEd: No reset, no restart -- no deal with Moscow - Washington Times
Hamas' Top Leader Visits Moscow - New York Times

SOMALIA
Mere Formality: Somali militant group Al-Shabaab aligns with Al-Qaeda - CS Monitor
At least 9 die in Somalia clashes, group says - CNN
Delays plague Somali offensive against Islamists - Washington Post

UKRAINE
Ukraine election: Pro-Moscow Viktor Yanukovych claims victory - Telegraph (UK)

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    What on Earth can Usama bin Laden, the mystical calculus of climate change and US Homeland Security have in common? Does bin Laden really agree with the President of the United States on matters weather? How is it that the...

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