Tag Archives: Israel

Sandbags Iraq

Kerry on Iran, Iran on Israel, and Government Shutdown D+3

SecState Kerry seeks “concrete steps” from Iran to move forward, Iran claims Israel’s jealous of the U.S. potential new BFF, and, well, it’s still shut down, with no end in sight –– all in today’s defense headlines.

Farewell Tom Clancy & Shutdown D+3.

FROM THE DESK OF CLEARANCE JOBS.COM

1.   Resume risks. Posting your resume inevitably makes your identity vulnerable.  Contributor Christopher Burgess explains how you can protect yourself: “Some items shouldn’t appear on a resume, including your Social Security Number (SSN) or your physical address. A telephone number or an email to a unique, one-off, email should be sufficient for an interested employer to reach out and engage. Only when an offer is to be made or when the interview process has advanced to the background check step should these key identity items be provided.”

2.  Telecommuting tips. With government shutdown in full swing – or not – working from home might be the best fit for you. Also from Christopher Burgess, some tips on making work at home work: “by 2016, one can expect to see a 69% increase in telecommuters. . . . The employee holds the key to remote worker success. As an employee, you are now under your own direct supervision. . . . working remotely is a win-win-win for the employee, the employer and the clients, providing realistic expectations are set between the employee and employer (and clients if appropriate).

THE FORCE AND THE FIGHT

1.  Kerry on Iran: concrete steps and Israeli security. Prove it.  Reuters’ Lesley Wroughton reports from Tokyo, “Secretary of State John Kerry said on Thursday that the United States hopes to engage with the new Iranian administration, but Tehran must first prove it is willing to end the stand-off over its nuclear weapons program. If Iran intends to be peaceful, ‘I believe there is a way to get there,’ Kerry told a news conference in Tokyo . . . . There is nothing here that is going to be taken at face-value and we’ve made that clear . . . . The president has said, and I have said, that it is not words that will make a difference, it’s actions, and the actions are clearly going to have to be sufficient.’”

2.  Rouhani on Israel on the U.S. on Iran: Israel is just jealous. Aljazeera.Com reports, “President Hassan Rouhani said that Israel was ‘upset and angry’ with signs of an emerging new relationship between the Islamic republic and the West. . . . ‘We don’t expect anything else from the Zionist regime,’ Rouhani told reporters after a cabinet meeting. Israel is ‘upset and angry because it sees that its blunted sword is being replaced with logic as the governing force in the world, and because the Iranian nation’s message of peace is being heard better,’ the moderate cleric said.”

3.  In Syria, Al Nusrah Front and the Islamic State of Iraq cooperate despite differences. LongWarJournal.Org’s Thomas Joscelyn reports, “Although there is no indication that a leadership dispute between the Al Nusrah Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has been settled, the two al Qaeda affiliates continue to fight alongside one another against their common enemies in Syria. . . . Reports from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) throughout September and into early October point to the al Qaeda affiliates’ ongoing collusion against Assad’s forces, Kurdish foes, and other mutual enemies. . . . the two al Qaeda affiliates operate throughout Syria, including in provinces that are not controlled by rebel forces.”

4.  In Afghanistan, Gen. Dostum throws support to Sayyaf. Khaama.Com reports, “Abdul Rab Rasool Sayyaf has reportedly reached an agreement with the National Islamic Movement of Afghanistan on Thursday and appointed Abdul Wahab Urfan as his second vice-president. Abdul Wahab Urfan is a member of the Afghan senate and is being supported by National Islamic Movement party of Afghanistan led by Gen. Abdul Rashid Dostum. . . . Sayyaf is expected to formally file nomination for 2014 presidential election along with his vice-president by this afternoon.”  Also in the race, “Fazal Karim Najami filed his nomination along with his two vice-president, Sabir Tamkin and Sultan Ahmad Hajati. . . . Fazal Karim Najami has previously worked as advisor to ministry of agriculture and rural rehabilitation ministry.” Abdullah Abdullah is the third candidate.

5.  AFRICAN WINDS blowing in AFRICOM. AllAfrica.Com reports from Nigeria’ capital Abuja, “Nigeria will today participate in a three-week joint military training with special forces from The Netherlands, U.S., UK, Spain and Italy. . . . [Nigerian Military’s Director of Defence Information, Brig.-Gen. Chris] Olukolade said the exercise, code named AFRICAN WINDS, is being spearheaded by the Nigerian Navy. . . . ‘It will be facilitated by a combined Mobile Training Teams, MTTs, of Marines and Special Forces drawn from The Netherlands, United States, United Kingdom, Spain and Italy under the auspices of African Partnership Station, APS. The Netherlands Navy Amphibious Support Ship, HMNLS ROTTERDAM, which is scheduled to arrive in Lagos and later proceed to Calabar, will feature as a major platform in the exercise.’”

CONTRACT WATCH

1.  $87 million to Gentex for advanced combat helmets (ACH). KeystoneEdge.Com’s Elise Vider reports, “U.S. armed forces will be wearing lighter and more comfortable, high-tech helmets made by the Carbondale-based Gentex Corporation. The company has a new $86.6 million multi-year contract to provide lightweight advanced combat helmets (ACH) to the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps. Gentex has been a helmet supplier to the U.S. government for more than 60 years. Gentex uses advanced technology and manufacturing resources to deliver a helmet that is eight percent lighter than previous ACH helmets and provides ‘added stability comfort and performance capability for the soldier,’ the company said.”

2.  $15 million to LexisNexis. Maybe it’s better to stay shutdown. NextGov.Com’s Aliya Sternstein reports, “The day before the government shut down, the Federal Emergency Management Agency awarded LexisNexis owner Reed Elsevier the potentially five-year deal to help victims of natural disasters such as the recent Colorado and New Mexico floods. At the same time, a service that traffics in personal information was revealed one week ago to have breached two systems at LexisNexis, likely to oblige ID thieves, according to an investigative report by cybersecurity researcher Brian Krebs.”

TECH, PRIVACY, & SECRECY

1.  “’These weren’t all plots, and they weren’t all foiled.’”  Gen. Alexander begins to come clean, admitting to Congress that he, well, exaggerated a little, well, a lot . . . . WashingtonTimes.Com reports that “the National Security Agency admitted that officials put out numbers that vastly overstated the counterterrorism successes of the government’s warrantless bulk collection of all Americans’ phone records. . . . Gen. Keith B. Alexander admitted that the number of terrorist plots foiled by the NSA’s huge database of every phone call made in or to America was only one or perhaps two — far smaller than the 54 originally claimed by the administration.”  See also Salon.Com, “NSA director admits to misleading public.”

2.  Cyberthreats increase during shutdown, and beyond. NextGov.Com contributor Brittany Ballenstedt reports, “With electronic infrastructure still up and running despite the government shutdown, the lack of staff support in information security shops is likely affecting the government’s ability to respond to cyber threats and attacks and creating potential ripple effects for cybersecurity going forward. . . . ‘What I would expect is that, by and large, just like the other services, information security is vastly undersupported, and that means that the exceptional circumstances are a problem,’ said Tim Erlin, director of IT security and risk strategy at security software firm Tripwire.’”

3.  Everything’s fine. McClatchyDC.Com contributor Anita Kumar analyzes Obama’s “independent group to review the vast surveillance programs” may not be so independent, after all: “The members of the review group are Richard Clarke, the chief counterterrorism adviser on the National Security Council for Clinton who later worked for Republican President George W. Bush; Michael Morell, Obama’s former deputy CIA director; law professor Geoffrey Stone, who has raised money for Obama and spearheads a committee hoping to build Obama’s presidential library in Chicago; law professor Cass Sunstein, administrator of information and regulatory affairs for Obama; and Peter Swire, a former Office of Management and Budget privacy director for Clinton. ‘At the end of the day, a task force led by Gen. Clapper full of insiders – and not directed to look at the extensive abuse – will never get at the bottom of the unconstitutional spying’ . . . .”

POTOMAC TWO-STEP

1.  Duuuuuuh . . . he confused me. Powerful anti-tax advocate Grover Norquist’s argues that Cruz confused everybody with crazy riddle- logic: “Speaking with the Post’s Ezra Klein, Norquist argued that Cruz ‘confused people’ [Congressmen] when he insisted that a vote to fund the government that didn’t also defund Obamacare was effectively a vote for Obamacare . . . ‘He said if you don’t agree with my tactic and with the specific structure of my idea, you’re bad. He said if the House would simply pass the bill with defunding he would force the Senate to act. He would lead this grass-roots movement that would get Democrats to change their mind. So the House passed it, it went to the Senate, and Ted Cruz said, oh, we don’t have the votes over here. And I can’t find the e-mails or ads targeting Democrats to support it. Cruz said he would deliver the votes and he didn’t deliver any Democratic votes. He pushed House Republicans into traffic and wandered away.’” Read the entire WaPo interview with Norquist.

2.  Rubber chickens.  In a marketing move worthy of notice, and applause, Nando’s Peri-Peri gets straight to the point: “The company, which has several stores in the Washington area, is offering a ‘Boneless Chicken, Spineless Congress’ offer of a free butterflied chicken breast to all ‘non-essential’ workers. ‘Nando’s wants to soothe the ruffled feathers of government workers hurt by the shutdown,’ Burton Heiss, CEO of Nando’s Peri-Peri USA, told Secrets. All furloughed workers have to do is visit Nando’s Facebook page to redeem the one-day offer. ‘Members of Congress need not apply,’ said the firm.”

3.  While you’re surfing the web, tunes to lull by.

OPINIONS EVERYONE HAS

1.  “Republicans against the Republic.”  TheDailyBeast.Com contributor Lawrence Lessig argues, “Politicians are free to support legislation for whatever reason they want. Subject to the rules regulating bribery, they’re free to demand whatever they want in return for a vote. Democrats might not like that the Republicans have this power. But their exercising it within our constitutional system is not a crime. But freedom is different from responsibility. And the real question that Republicans need to be asking their party leadership is whether this is the kind of government that Americans should want.”

2.  “Shutdown: A fight with no room for compromise.” Reuters contributor Bill Schneider argues, “To end the government shutdown, all Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) needs to do is let the House of Representatives vote on a budget. It would pass within 30 minutes. Virtually all 200 House Democrats would vote to keep the government open, as would as many as 50 Republicans. An easy majority. But no. Boehner and other Republican leaders refuse to do that because they are in thrall to Tea Party conservatives.”

3.  Israel – how about a little help here?  WaPo contributor Walter Pincus argues, “It’s time for Israel to stop making military threats and to propose an imaginative diplomatic move — risky as it may seem — to help ease nuclear tensions in the Middle East. It can start by acknowledging its own nuclear weapons program.”

THE FUNNIES

1.  Not About Shutdown #1.

2.  Not About Shutdown #2.

3.  Not About Shutdown #3