Leaked Files Shine Light on Gitmo Detainees
A trove of more than 700 classified military documents lifts the lid on Gitmo and the men who’ve served time there, reports the New York Times, one of several news orgs to get hold of the papers, much to the Pentagon’s annoyance. Among the revelations: most of the 172 prisoners still held there have been rated as a “high risk” of posing a threat to the U.S. and its allies if released. But even more detainees – a third of the 600 already released – were tagged “high risk,” too, before they were freed or handed over to other governments. The Times says the docs — which have little new information on detainee abuse – won’t end the debate over Gitmo, since they “can be mined for evidence supporting beliefs across the political spectrum ….”
Read the full story: Classified Files Offer New Insights Into Detainees, New York Times
Fed’s Stimulus Efforts Flop
The Federal Reserve’s trial-and-error attempt to juice the economy by buying up huge amounts of federal debt has been a flop, economists say. The economic recovery has actually slacked off since November, when the Fed started snapping up $600 million in Treasury securities — often called “quantitative easing” or QE and QE2 — to steer private dollars into job-creating investments. The policy, to end in June, succeeded mainly in pumping up the stock market.
Read the full article: Fed Searches for Next Step, Wall Street Journal
NATO Planes Slam Gaddhafi Compound
Allied war planes struck the Libyan leader’s Tripoli compound, destroying a complex of offices and meeting facilities in “the most dramatic broadening yet” of the NATO air campaign. The attack is the latest sign, says the Times, that non-military targets would be hit “in an effort to break down the instruments of Colonel Qaddafi’s broader control.”
Read the full story: NATO Strikes Qaddafi Compound, New York Times
Obama Moving Toward a Foreign Policy ‘Doctrine’?
The president’s approach to the Arab uprisings – breaking with Mubarak, striking at Libya – is starting to look like a coherent vision of America’s role in the world, writes Ryan Lizza in a big New Yorker piece. That vision – one source dubs it “leading from behind” – comes from two unspoken beliefs: that U.S. power is on the wane relative to that of rivals, especially China; and that America is unloved in many parts of the world. And it relies on stealth and modesty as much as on military strength. “It’s so at odds with the John Wayne expectation for what America is in the world,” a foreign policy adviser says. “But it’s necessary for shepherding us through this phase.”
Read the full story: How the Arab Spring Remade Obama’s Foreign Policy The New Yorker
Republicans “Getting the Crap Kicked Out of Them” on Medicare
Congressional Republicans are getting serious heat over their party’s plans to modify Medicare and Medicaid. All but four House Republicans voted for Rep. Paul Ryan’s health care-gutting budget plan earlier this month, and they’ve been hearing about it from pissed-off constituents. Party leaders have teed up a conference call today to discuss ways to discuss the vote with the public. One source says it’s intended to help swing-district members “who have been getting the crap kicked out of them.”
Read the full story: Republicans in Swing Districts Take Heat for Supporting Ryan’s Medicare Plan, National Journal