Excerpts: General Oatreaus resigns from CIA. Former Jordan intelligence
chief jailed and fined. U.S. considering new approach to Iran November 11,
+++SOURCE: Saudi Gazette 11 Nov.’12:”All In yet all’s not out in Petraeaus
SUBJECT: General Patreaus resigns from CIA
QUOTE:”Neither Patreaus nor the CIA explained exactly why he felt he had to
FULLTEXT:WASHINGTON – Washington was in shock Saturday[10 Non.] after the
sudden resignation of CIA chief and ex-US commander in Iraq and Afghanistan,
David Petraeus, handing another major challenge to President Barack Obama
just three days after his reelection.
Petraeus said he resigned over an extramarital affair, bringing an
ignominious end to a highly praised military and government career. It also
came shortly before the US spy chief had been due to testify in Congress on
the agency’s alleged failure to protect a US consulate in Libya from a
“After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by
engaging in an extramarital affair,” the CIA director said in a message to
staff, released to the media Friday.
Obama, in a written statement, acknowledged Petraeus’s departure, praising
his “intellectual rigor, dedication, and patriotism.”
But at the same time, he expressed confidence that the Central Intelligence
Agency “will continue to thrive and carry out its essential mission” without
the famed general.
The president, fresh off his electoral triumph, reportedly had no inkling
that the CIA chief was about to resign until Thursday morning[8 Nov.]. When
he met with Petraeus later that day, Obama refused to accept the resignation
straight away, saying he would think about it overnight, the New York Times
said. But in the end, Obama concluded he could not push Petraeus to stay on,
according to the Times.
Michael Morell, Petraeus’s deputy at the country’s lead spy agency, will
serve as acting director, but there were indications he might be only a
Speculation on a possible successor focused on John Brennan, the White House
counter-terrorism adviser and CIA veteran who has played an instrumental
role in Obama’s drone war against Al-Qaeda militants.
Neither Petraeus nor the CIA explained exactly why he felt he had to step
down over the affair, and whether his liaison presented a purely personal
problem or raised security issues in his sensitive work as spy chief. The
extramarital affair came to light as the FBI was investigating whether a
computer used by Petraeus had been compromised, the New York Times and other
US media reported, citing government officials.
NBC News and other media reported the Federal Bureau of Investigation was
investigating Paula Broadwell, co-author of a favorable biography of
Petraeus, “All In: The Education of David Petraeus,” for possible improper
access to classified information.
Unnamed officials told the New York Times that Petraeus’s lover was
Broadwell, a former Army major who spent long periods interviewing Petraeus
for her book. She offered no public comment on the revelations.
Experts noted that if Petraeus, a four-star general who retired to take the
CIA job, had committed adultery while still in the army, he could have been
The resignation comes amid criticism in some quarters of Petraeus over his
response to the deadly attack in September on the US consulate in Benghazi,
which killed the US ambassador to Libya and three other Americans.
Petraeus’ management style was recently lauded in a Newsweek article by
Broadwell, co-author of the biography “All In: The Education of General
David Petraeus.” – Agencies
+++SUBJECT:Former Jordan intelligence chief jailed, fined
QUOTE:”corruption related charges including embezzlement, money laundering
and explotation of public office”
FULL TEXT:AMMAN –– The Criminal Court on Sunday ordered that former General
Intelligence Department chief Mohammad Dahabi receive a 13-year-prison
sentence and a fine of JD21 million, according to the Jordan News Agency,
Dahabi was standing trial on several corruption-related charges including
embezzlement, money laundering and exploitation of public office.
He spent 10 months in custody while the prosecution was probing the case,
collecting evidence and questioning witnesses
+++SOURCE: Jordan Times 11 Nov.’12:”U.S. weighs broader nuke deal with
SUBJECT: U.S. considering new approach to Iran
QUOTE:”u.S. considering a new approach . . .that would ease economic
sanctions earlier than previously offered”
FULL TEXT:WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is considering a new
approach in negotiations to curb Iran’s nuclear programme that would ease
economic sanctions faster than previously offered if Tehran makes greater
concessions than it has ever discussed. The proposal is one of several
options being discussed before another round of negotiations between world
powers and the Islamic republic, officials said Friday[9 Nov.].
The US aim is to try to prevent the next set of talks with Iran from failing
like all previous efforts.
The strategising is taking place amid an upsurge in diplomatic activity. The
UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency announced Friday[9 Nov.] talks of
its own in Tehran in December. Negotiations bogged down last summer over
permission to investigate sites for possible secret work on nuclear weapons.
Meanwhile, top negotiators from the United States, Britain, China, France,
Germany and Russia have agreed to meet November 21 in Brussels, a Western
official said, in a prelude to a possible resumption of talks between those
countries and Iran early next year. By that time, the US also could be
wielding the threat of new and unprecedented sanctions against the Iranian
economy that lawmakers in Congress are working on, according to
congressional aides and people involved in drafting the measures.
The basic contours of any negotiated solution are clear: US, European and
other international sanctions would be eased if Iran halts its enrichment of
uranium that is getting closer to weapons-grade, sends abroad its existing
stockpile of such uranium and suspends operations at its underground Fordo
But Iran’s leadership has refused to bite on that approach, even as the
value of its currency has dropped precipitously against the dollar, sparking
an economic depression and massive public discontent.
That has prompted US brainstorming on ways to reshape the offer to make it
more attractive for the Iranians, without granting any new concessions that
would reward the regime for its intransigence, administration officials
said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorised
to discuss the matter publicly.
The administration sees Iran’s refusal to comply with its nuclear
obligations as the sole cause for the logjam. But officials say the
administration is considering an expanded offer that includes a deeper and
faster drawdown in the oil and other sanctions that are sapping billions of
dollars out of the Iranian economy.
But those sanctions could be scaled back only if Tehran agrees to far
greater concessions that it has ever hinted at on its fiercely-defended
enrichment programme. Details of the potential proposal are still unclear,
but the premise is to craft a deal that allows both sides to avoid the
appearance of caving into the other’s demands.
Washington and many of its European and Arab partners fear Iran is trying to
develop nuclear warheads, even if the Islamic republic insists the programme
is solely designed for peaceful energy and medical research purposes. The
Obama administration remains committed to a diplomatic solution. It says
military options should only be a last resort and has pressed ally Israel to
hold off on any plans for a pre-emptive strike against Iran’s nuclear
Patience in Israel and the United States is wearing thin. Israel’s defence
minister said Thursday that the timetable for Iran to enrich enough uranium
to build nuclear weapons has been delayed by eight months. It was an
apparent reference to Iran’s decision, as reported by the IAEA, to convert
much of its higher-level enriched uranium into a powder for a medical
research reactor that is difficult to reprocess for weapons production.
Israel sees the nuclear programme as an existential threat, citing Iranian
denials of the Holocaust, calls for Israel’s destruction, development of
missiles capable of striking Israel and its support for groups such as Hamas
and Hizbollah. It has pressed Washington in the past for more aggressive
With Obama re-elected, a US official said the administration also would be
open to direct talks with Tehran as part of the broader negotiations
involving the larger group of world powers, if those would advance hopes of
a negotiated agreement. But a one-on-one encounter sometime in the next
three months is considered highly unlikely by the administration because it
sees no willingness by the Iranians, said the official. He spoke on
condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorised to speak publicly on the
Discussions with Tehran have been going on for a decade.
In Congress, lawmakers are working on a set of new sanctions that could
prevent the Iran from doing business with most of the world until it agrees
to international constraints on its nuclear programme. The bipartisan
financial and trade restrictions amount to a “complete sanctions regime”
against Tehran, according to one congressional aide involved in the process,
but they put the Obama administration in a difficult position with allies
who are still trading with Iran.
The measures by Republican Sen. Mark Kirk and New Jersey Sen. Robert
Menendez would target everything from Iranian assets overseas to all foreign
goods that the country imports, building on the tough sanctions package
against Tehran’s oil industry that the duo pushed through earlier this year,
according to congressional aides and people involved in the process. They
spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorise to discuss
the issue publicly
Sue Lerner - Associate, IMRA