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Security

The Takeaway

New Center Promises Transparency But Delays Declassification

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

President Obama is expected to sign an executive order before the year is over to create a new National Declassification Center in order to aggressively clear a backlog of classified documents. But, the creation of the center will actually delay the declassification of 400 million pages of Cold War-era documents. We talk with Bryan Bender from the Boston Globe and Jim Harper from the CATO Institute about how this plan fits with the president’s promises for government transparency.

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The Takeaway

Improve Your Passwords to Better Protect Your Identity

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Passwords were once the stuff of play, humor and childhood rites of passage.  How did they become the rather boring key to protecting our bank accounts, intimate communications and identities?  Are passwords inadequate to the task of protecting anything truly valuable? And can we find some fun as we improve our passwords and better protect ourselves from 21st century thievery?  Takeaway Tech contributor Baratunde Thurston says yes.

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The Takeaway

Using Unmanned Drones to Fight Piracy

Thursday, November 12, 2009

We're looking at a confrontation between high-tech and low-tech in the waters off East Africa. Several thousand Somali pirates in speedboats are causing massive disruption in vital shipping lanes. But the U.S. military has a new use for a weapon now seeing frequent use in in Pakistan and Afghanistan: unmanned aerial drones. We speak to the BBC’s Will Ross, who witnessed a drone launch on the Seychelle Islands, off the coast of East Africa.

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The Takeaway

Alleged Fort Hood Shooter Reportedly Wrote to Radical Cleric

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

New details are emerging in the case of the suspected Fort Hood shooter, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, an Army psychiatrist who shot and killed 13 people and wounded 29 others during a shooting spree last week. Our partner The New York Times reports that Hasan had sent 10 to 20 messages since late last year to a radical Islamic cleric, once a leader at the Virginia mosque where Hasan worshipped and since relocated to Yemen. Scott Shane, New York Times national security reporter, joins us. And for a look at how the community in and around Fort Hood is reacting to the tragedy, we talk to Colonel Chaplain Frank Jackson. He is the garrison chaplain at Fort Hood.

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The Takeaway

Panel Says China Increasing Spying Via the Internet

Thursday, October 22, 2009

A congressional advisory panel has found that the Chinese government is ratcheting up its cyberspying operations against the United States. The report, due out today, documents specific examples of carefully orchestrated campaigns against corporate targets in the United States. Siobhan Gorman, the Wall Street Journal's intelligence correspondent, joins us with a look at a growing war in cyberspace between the U.S. and China.

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The Takeaway

President Obama's UN Debut

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Yesterday President Obama took to the international stage as he made his United Nations debut. From yesterday’s climate change summit to tomorrow’s nuclear disarmament talk — and anticipated flourishes from Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Libya's Muammar Gaddafi along the way — we take a look at President Obama’s global positioning with worldly thinkers Richard Wolffe and Reihan Salam. Richard Wolffe is a journalist and author of the bestselling book "Renegade: The Making of a President." Reihan Salam is a fellow at the New America Foundation and editor of The American Scene.

Watch the president's address to the United Nations:

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The Takeaway

Russian Reaction to Scrapped Missile Defense System

Friday, September 18, 2009

President Obama announced yesterday that he is abandoning plans for a missile defense shield. President Bush had slated the shield for development in Poland and the Czech Republic, but the defense scheme became an increasing irritation in U.S.-Russian relations, and President Obama has opted to go a different direction, asking for a mixed land/sea-based system to guard against Iranian missiles. So how is Russia reacting to the news? Olexiy Solohubenko, Russian affairs expert at the BBC, joins us with a look at how the story is being in reported in Russian media.

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The Takeaway

'World Have Your Say' on Missile Defense Changes

Friday, September 18, 2009

President Obama has decided to scrap President Bush's plan for a land-based missile defense shield in Eastern Europe. Critics claim that this would leave our allies open to harm, while proponents say the move reflects a focus on realistic 21st-century threats. How is the world responding to this decision? We turn to Ros Atkins, host of the BBC's call-in show "World Have Your Say," to find out. They've been gathering comments from across the globe.

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The Takeaway

Obama Scraps Bush-Era Missile Plan

Friday, September 18, 2009

Yesterday President Obama announced that he is scrapping the Bush administration's plans for a land-based missile defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic. He's opting instead to focus on a defense system that would intercept shorter-range missiles from Iran. This move has upset Poland and the Czech Republic, but pleased Russia, who was against Bush's plan. Is this an intelligent decision based on new information about Iran's weapons? Or will it empower Russia and Iran at the expense of American allies? We speak to former U.S. Ambassador John Bolton, who served under President Bush, and to Alexander Cooley, professor of International Relations and Foreign Policy at Barnard College. (Click through for a full interview transcript.)

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The Takeaway

U.S. Abandoning Plans for Eastern Europe Missile Shield

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The United States has decided to abandon contentious plans for a missile defense shield intended to be set up in Poland and the Czech Republic. The move should ease U.S.-Russia relations, as the planned missile shield had been causing a great deal of strife between the former Cold War rivals. BBC correspondent Richard Galpin has the first official Russian reaction on this breaking news story.

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The Takeaway

Afghan Polls to Delay Close

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Afghan authorities have decided to keep the polls open for an extra hour to allow more people to vote during the nation's second presidential election since the fall of the Taliban. Militants have launched minor attacks across the country in an attempt to disrupt the election. For an update from the scene in Kandahar, we talk to Sarah Chayes, special advisor to Gen. Stanley McChrystal.  (McChrystal is currently running the U.S. military operation in Afghanistan.) We are also joined by long-time journalist Charlie Sennott who is the executive editor of GlobalPost. Charlie's extensive reporting on the Taliban has just been released in a special report: Life, Death, and the Taliban.

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The Takeaway

Bank of America and the SEC Face Off in Federal Court

Monday, August 10, 2009

Two strange bedfellows will face a judge in federal court today: Bank of America and the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Takeaway talks to Louise Story, finance reporter for The New York Times.

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The Takeaway

President Obama Heads to Mexico for "Three Amigos" Summit

Monday, August 10, 2009

President Obama is in Mexico today for meetings with his Canadian and Mexican counterparts. There's a lot on the agenda and The Takeaway has got a range of voices weighing in on NAFTA, border security and the swine flu. Bret Caldwell is a Director of Communications with the Teamsters Union, Ioan Grillo is a reporter in Mexico City with Time Magazine, and Diana Washington-Valdez is a reporter with the El Paso Times who focuses on US and Mexico border security.

Watch Mexico's President Felipe Calderón welcoming President Obama to Mexico (in Spanish and English)

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The Takeaway

Live From Camp Leatherneck in Afghanistan

Thursday, July 02, 2009

This morning the U.S. military launched one of the largest offensives in recent U.S. military history in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan. The operation against Taliban fighters involves 4,000 Marines and hundreds of Afghani fighters. Joining The Takeaway now is Captain William Pelletier, U.S. military spokesman for the Marine Expeditionary Brigade-Afghanistan, who is joining us from Camp Leatherneck in Afghanistan's Helmand Province.

"It's 110 degrees down here, we are in the Helmand desert, so we had some injuries with Marines that basically needed to be taken back, cooled down and hydrated. But no reports that I've heard.. of 'friendly' casualties. Nobody KIA, fortunately."
— Captain William Pelletier, from Camp Leatherneck in Helmand Province

Click through for transcript

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The Takeaway

Operation Khanjar Kicks Off in Afghanistan

Thursday, July 02, 2009

In continuing analysis of the new U.S. military offensive against Taliban fighters in Afghanistan, The Takeaway is joined by Lawrence Korb, Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. He was also the Assistant Secretary of Defense from 1981 through 1985.

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The Takeaway

Analyzing America's Mission in Afghanistan

Thursday, July 02, 2009

The U.S. military has launched a major operation in Afghanistan. Over 4,000 Marines have been dispatched from the American base and to rout the Taliban from the region. The offensive was launched shortly after 1 a.m. Thursday local time in Helmand province, a Taliban stronghold in the southern part of the country and the world's largest opium poppy producing area. Joining The Takeaway to discuss the offensive is the BBC's Defense Correspondent Rob Watson.

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The Takeaway

Answers at Last? The Bhutto Assasination Inquiry

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

A United Nations inquiry into the December 2007 assassination of the former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto begins today. Bhutto was murdered in a suicide attack at a rally as she campaigned for election. Her death threw nuclear-armed U.S. ally Pakistan into crisis and her Pakistan People's Party rode a wave of sympathy to win a February 2008 election. Her widower, Asif Ali Zardari, later become President. As the commission investigating her murder gets underway, we ask whether they have enough power to get even close to the truth? The BBC’s World Affairs Correspondent Mike Wooldridge, who is in Islamabad, Pakistan, joins us with more.

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The Takeaway

Is North Korea Fishing For Trouble?

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

They’re starting to call it “the cruise to nowhere.” For more than two weeks, the U.S. government has been closely tracking the progress of a North Korean ship as it makes its way across the South China Sea bound for Myanmar. At first officials thought the mystery ship could be the first test of the UN Security Council's resolution to allow inspection of suspicious ships. But now it seems that the North Koreans may be fishing for something else: a confrontation with the U.S. BBC Correspondent John Sudworth joins The Takeaway from Seoul, South Korea, with more of the story.

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The Takeaway

Breaking Down the (Fire) Wall in Iran

Friday, June 26, 2009

In Iran, the day of the election, the internet was shut down completely. In the last two weeks, it has been slowed down, hacked, and carefully watched. How did the Iranians set up such a deliberate firewall so quickly? Here to tell us how is Rafal Rohozinski, he is the Principal Investigator with OpenNet Initiative, a university collaboration that aims to analyze internet filtering and surveillance practices. They have a new report out, looking at the Iranian firewall. He is also CEO of Siphon, a company that sells products to circumvent firewalls.

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The Takeaway

U.S. Troop Pullout: Is Iraq Ready to Go It Alone?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

After six years of occupation, U.S. troops are about to pull out of Iraqi cities. Amid increasing violence, including a series of explosions across Baghdad and a suicide truck bombing last weekend, is Iraq is ready to handle its own security when the 133,000 U.S. troops depart? Rod Nordland is the Foreign Correspondent in the Baghdad Bureau for our partners The New York Times, and he joins us now to help answer that question.

For more, read Rod Nordland's article, Spate of Attacks Tests Iraqi City and U.S. Pullout, in The New York Times.

"We can't very well leave Iraq if the Iraqi forces can't stand on their own. So we need to do as much as we can to train them."
— New York times correspondent Rod Nordland on the withdrawing of U.S. troops from Iraq

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