National Security Brief: August 26, 2011

A bomb blast that hit the U.N. building in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, reportedly struck the wing that houses UNICEF. The number of casualties are unknown, but witnesses are reporting large numbers of dead at the scene.

The Obama administration is expanding the U.S.’s role in Mexico’s drug war, allowing Mexican commandos into the U.S. to stage cross-border helicopter raids back into Mexico.

Israeli airstrikes in Gaza killed nine Palestinians on Wednesday and Thursday while 20 rockets from Gaza were fired into Israel during the same period. No Israeli deaths were reported.

In his new memoir, Dick Cheney says he doesn’t need to apologize for the 16 words about Saddam Hussein and uranium in the 2003 State of the Union address. “THE SIXTEEN WORDS WERE TRUE,” he writes. No, they were not.

Somali Islamist rebels have reportedly beheaded at least 11 civilians in Mogadishu in the past two weeks after withdrawing from their bases in the capital earlier this month.

NATO attacks on Sirte, the home base of Col. Moammar Qaddafi’s tribe, hit a total of 29 armed vehicles on Wednesday and, early Friday, Royal Air Force jets attacked a “large headquarters bunker” according to a U.K. Ministry of Defense official.