National Security Brief: U.S. Planning Special Ops Against Libya Attackers

— The New York Times reports: “The United States is laying the groundwork for operations to kill or capture militants implicated in the deadly attack on a diplomatic mission in Libya, senior military and counterterrorism officials said Tuesday, as the weak Libyan government appears unable to arrest or even question fighters involved in the assault.”

— Reuters reports that Iran may be a few years away from being able to build a nuclear-armed missile if it decided to go down that path.

— Meanwhile, the U.N. says Iran is currently engaging in a “severe clampdown” on human rights and press freedom as Iran’s president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad admitted on Tuesday that international sanctions on the Islamic Republic over its nuclear program are having a bite, saying they are partly to blame for the collapse of the country’s currency.

— Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is appearing to shift his emphasis of military action on Iran’s nuclear program to diplomacy as he plans to travel to Europe to press for tougher sanctions on Tehran. The Ploughshares Fund’s Joel Rubin has more on Netanyahu’s shift.


— The AP reports that Human Rights Watch “says Hamas’ security forces in Gaza are committing severe abuses, including torture of detainees, arrests without warrants, forced confessions, unfair trials and mock executions.”

— Senate investigators found that the Department of Homeland Security’s so-called “fusion centers” — created after 9/11 to coordinate information sharing among local, state and federal officials — have become pools of ineptitude, waste and civil liberties intrusions.