President Obama — when asked about allegations made by anti-government activists in Syria that President Bashar al-Assad’s forces had used chemical weapons in an attack said to have killed more than 1,300 people — said that officials are “right now gathering information” and “what we’ve seen indicates that this is clearly a big event of grave concern.”
Reactions to the sentence handed down on Wednesday by Military Judge Denise Lind were immediate: “We’ll keep fighting for you, Bradley! You’re our hero!” exclaimed many in the courtroom when the verdict was announced.
Conflicting reports indicate that the Obama administration may have suspended military aid to Egypt.
President Obama is pushing for continuation of the U.S. cooperation with Egyptian authorities, while Senator Rand Paul aims to end the funneling of funds to radicals in Egypt that are murdering opponents.
On August 8 the U.S. State Department warned U.S. citizens “to defer all non-essential travel to Pakistan,” stating that “The presence of several foreign and indigenous terrorist groups poses a potential danger to U.S. citizens throughout Pakistan.”
The warning added, “On August 8, 2013, the Department of State ordered the departure of non-emergency U.S. government personnel from the U.S. Consulate General in Lahore, Pakistan. The Department of State ordered this drawdown due to specific threats concerning the U.S. Consulate in Lahore.”
At least 30 people were killed in Yemen by U.S. drone strikes over the past 12 days. Among the dead was an eight-year-old girl who died in her father's arms.
Retiring U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Detainee Policy William K. Lietzau dropped a bombshell on the Obama administration in an interview with the London Daily Mail, calling for the closure of the Guantanamo Bay prison and an end to both the unconstitutional military commission trials of detainees and the so-called “war on terror” itself.
The mainstream media in the United States have increasingly come to the conclusion that the Benghazi attacks were related to a secret gun-running operation managed by the U.S. government to ferry weapons that had been used by Libyan rebels to Syria. Establishment media outlets reporting on the reputed CIA gun-running operation over the past week included Fox News' Geraldo Rivera, London's Daily Telegraph newspaper, and CNN television.
State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki announced on August 4 that U.S. embassies and consulates in 19 Muslim nations will remain closed at least until the end of this week. Psaki stated that the decision to keep the diplomatic posts closed signifies an “abundance of caution” and is “not an indication of a new threat.”
The Department of Defense says Americans do not have the right to know where it is currently waging war.
In an appearance before a reconfirmation hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee on July 18, Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said he favors a U.S. role in “building a moderate opposition” against the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.