National Security Brief: September 8, 2011

— At newly discovered weapons storage sites in Libya, the National Transitional Council (NTC) is finding that thousands of surface-to-air-missiles are unaccounted for, adding to concerns about a Qaddafi loyalist insurgency or the threat from Al Qaeda in the Maghreb.

— White House top counterterrorism official John Brennan expressed worry yesterday about terrorists obtaining surface-to-air-missiles from mass looting in Libya after the fall of the Qaddafi regime.

— More than 100 Palestinian officials submitted official statehood plans to UN Chief Ban Ki-moon in a Ramallah ceremony, a move which marks the launch of the Palestinian Authority’s bid for a UN recognized state.

— The State Department announced yesterday that veteran diplomat William Taylor will head a new office to oversee U.S. assistance to Arab nations going through democratic transitions after popular uprisings toppled their longtime autocratic leaders.”


— Activists said that in house-to-house raids in several restive Syrian cities, regime security forces searched for the 700 or so soldiers who defected from the side of dictator Bashar al Assad to the opposition.

— The former head of Saudia Arabia’s spy agency, Prince Turki al-Faisal, told a Washington audience that President Obama deserves credit for killing Osama Bin Laden, but he should have taken the opportunity to end the war in Afghanistan.

— Afghan civilians often have little idea what exactly 9/11 was, sometimes only recognizing it as something foreigners talk about or speculating that the U.S. carried out the attack to justify the invasion of Afghanistan.

— Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called for an end to violence in Syria’s 6-month old uprising, saying “There should be talks” and “a military solution is never the right solution.”