National Security Brief: Turmoil In Egypt

— Thousands of protesters filled Cairo’s Tahrir Square overnight as Egypt’s rival presidential candidates accused each of trying to steal an election whose result is still not known five days after polling ended.

— Twenty people were killed when seven Taliban militants shot their way into a much-visited lakeside resort near Kabul and took scores of hostages during an 11-hour siege. A Taliban spokesman said they attacked the compound because Afghans drank alcohol there and that there was prostitution and dancing. Afghan security forces killed all seven attackers.

— House Armed Services Chairman Buck McKeon (R-CA) said yesterday that Congress isn’t “mature enough” to reach a deal to reverse the sequestration military spending cuts, and suggested Congress should “kick it down the road” to resolve uncertainty.

— Libya’s fragile democracy is being undermined by volunteer militias who operate outside the control of state institutions. Human rights groups have documented a series of cases of militias going to people’s houses, spiriting them away and, often, beating and torturing them.

— House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) cast doubt on reports that the Stuxnet and Flame viruses were the work of the U.S. and Israel. “Don’t believe everything you read in the newspaper,” he said. “I would be very, very cautious about assigning any nation-state originator to any of the [viruses]. … There was as much wrong in those [articles] as there ever was right.”