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SYRIA GOING TO HELL?

One Opposition Leader Quits, Another Wounded in Blast
By Harold Hutchison

The Syrian opposition has descended into chaos, as one opposition leader resigned, and another was wounded in a bomb blast. The chaos comes as Secretary of State John Kerry asked the Iraqi government to stop Iranian arms shipments to Syria.

ITALIANS TO FACE TRIAL

Standoff Between Italy and India Ends
By Harold Hutchison

Two Italian Marines will face murder charges in India as the result of a diplomatic settlement ending a standoff that emerged from the deaths of two Indian fishermen in waters off the southwestern coast of India.

The incident occurred while the marines were guarding an Italian ship against pirates. The Italian Marines had returned to Italy to vote in the country’s election, then the government had announced they would remain there. The Indians responded by barring Italy’s ambassador from leaving the country.

AL-QAEDA STILL STIRS

Iraq Affiliate Claims Wave of Bombings
By Harold Hutchison

A wave of bombings Tuesday that left 60 people dead was claimed by the Islamic State of Iraq, the official name of al-Qaeda’s affiliate in that country.

Over a dozen bombs went off in Baghdad itself, while others went off in surrounding towns. That day, the Iraqi government announced that local elections in two provinces would be delayed for as many as six months from a planned 20 April date.

IRANIANS PURSUE UAV!

Incident Goes Down Over Persian Gulf
By Harold Hutchison

An Iranian military jet pursued an American unmanned aerial vehicle over the Persian Gulf. The incident, on 12 March, ended only when escorting American aircraft gave a verbal warning to the Iranian jet.

TERRORISTS SLAUGHTER HOSTAGES

Islamist Group Kills Seven
By Harold Hutchison

Seven hostages held by the terrorist group Ansaru were slaughtered by the terrorists, who claimed the murders were in retaliation for a planned rescue operation.

The four Lebanese citizens, one Briton, one Greek citizen, and one Italian had been held since February. The terrorist group had taken them in response to the French intervention in Mali against Islamist rebels with ties to al-Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb.

BOTCHING A CAPTURE?

Decision to Try Bin Laden In-Law in NYC Draws Fire
By Harold Hutchison

Two Republican Senators have strongly criticized the decision of the Obama Administration to try Sulaiman Abu Ghayth in New York City. The criticism was joined by the prosecutor of the “blind sheikh” Omar Abdel-Rahman, Andrew C. McCarthy, who accused the Obama Administration of turning “the clock back to the pre-9/11 days, when al-Qaeda was a law-enforcement problem, not a national-security challenge.”

MCCAIN GETS NASTY

Slams Senators Paul, Cruz Over Brennan Filibuster
By Harold Hutchison

Senator John McCain (R-AZ) continued his feud with Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) in an interview with the Huffington Post. The Arizona Senator took his criticism of Paul’s filibuster to a new level in the interview.

“It's always the wacko birds on right and left that get the media megaphone,” McCain said in the article by Jon Ward. “I think it can be harmful if there is a belief among the American people that those people are reflective of the views of the majority of Republicans. They're not.”

FRENCH ANNOUNCE PULLOUT

Withdrawal to Start in April
By Harold Hutchison

French troops will begin pulling out of Mali in April, French President Francois Hollande announced on Thursday. The announcement comes as fierce resistance to efforts by French and Chadian troops continues in the northern part of Mali. The decision did raise concerns that some Islamists were just going to ground.

WHERE ARE THE LIMITS?

UAV Strikes Raise Serious Questions
By Harold Hutchison

PREDATORS AND REAPERS
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or drones have played a big role in the Global War on Terror. Since 11 September, 2001, they have become an almost indispensable tool in America’s counter-terrorism arsenal. But there have been major questions surrounding them. Where are the limits?

NEW SANCTIONS ON NORTH KOREA

North Korean Threats Continue
By Harold Hutchison

The United Nations Security Council imposed new sanctions on North Korea, even as the rogue nuclear power threatened to launch a pre-emptive nuclear strike on the United States.

CANCER CLAIMS A TYRANT

Venezuelan Dictator – and Loud Mouth – Dies in Caracas
By Harold Hutchison

On 5 March, 2013, Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez departed this earth – making it a better place – after he lost a two-year battle with cancer. Chavez’s death promoted a wide range of reactions from Americans and Venzuelans.

VENEZUELAN DICTATOR DIES

Cancer Claims Hugo Chavez
By Harold Hutchison

Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez passed away earlier today after a lengthy struggle with cancer. Chavez, who won election in 1998 despite his involvement in a failed 1992 coup, had been concentrating power over his reign.

BORNEO BORDER FIGHT!

Malaysian Forces Attack Filipinos
By Harold Hutchison

A simmering border dispute erupted in violence when Malaysian forces attacked an armed Filipino group which is asserting a decades-old claim to a portion of Borneo. At least 31 Filipinos and ten Malaysian policemen have been killed so far.

About 200 members of the Sultanate of Sulu landed in the disputed region in the middle of February. The militants have since engaged in an armed standoff that has been very violent.

CLASHES IN CONGO KILL 80

Thousands Displaced By Renewed Fighting
By Harold Hutchison

Renewed clashes between different rebel groups left 80 people dead in the Congo. The new round of fighting comes as military leaders of M23 essentially fired the political leader of the movement.

According to a report by VOA News, rebels from the Alliance of Patriots for a Free and Sovereign Congo, or APCLS, captured the town of Kitchanga, in North Kivu province, from another rebel group, the FARDC.

CONTINUED FIGHTING IN MALI

French Soldier Killed in Fighting – But Islamists Lose Two Top Commanders
By Harold Hutchison

A French soldier was killed during fighting in Mali, but the Islamist rebels lost two top commanders in fighting with Chadian troops. This is as French and African troops continue their campaign against the rebels who are affiliated with al-Qaeda.