With United States installations across the Muslim world on high alert, Muslims today will mark the end of Ramadan and tomorrow the start of the Eid ul-Fitr festival, which runs through Friday.
Yemeni authorities say they have foiled an audacious plot today to seize an important port and kidnap or kill foreigners.
Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri gave “clear orders” to Nasir al-Wuhayshi, the founder of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the Yemen-based affiliate, to undertake an attack, according to U.S. officials. They say the intercepted messages are what prompted the global alert and closure of U.S. diplomatic posts. Nineteen U.S. embassies and consulates are slated to remain closed at least through Saturday.
Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., commander of American and allied forces in Afghanistan, makes the case for a continuing U.S. military presence in Afghanistan, possibly through 2017, while the Obama administration is considering a withdrawal by 2014. Recent polls show only 28 percent of Americans believe the war is worthwhile.
Taliban leader Mullah Omar, in a rare message marking Eid, warned against even a small contingency of foreign forces in Afghanistan after 2014.
President Barack Obama has canceled his scheduled Moscow summit next month with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The move was widely expected after Putin granted asylum to former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
“Our planet as a whole is becoming a warmer place,” said National Oceanic and Atmospheric acting administrator Kathryn Sullivan, following a report showing 2012 was among the 10 warmest years on record worldwide (using data going back to the 1800s). Globally, 1998 was warmer, but researchers continue to record falling sea ice at the Arctic Circle and rising seas worldwide. “This report does not try to explain why we are seeing what we are seeing,” said NOAA’s Thomas Karl, but “only on what the observations are telling us.”