First on CNN: The White House released 100 pages of e-mails that detailed the back and forth between the CIA, State Department and the White House in developing talking points following the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
According to senior Obama administration officials, the e-mails demonstrate that the process of developing the so-called talking points was not focused on politics but rather on events. The e-mails indicate that the CIA was likely the lead organization on developing the talking points, with the State Department recommending significant changes.
U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed in the attacks on September 11, 2012.
Watch complete coverage on CNN and go to http://thelead.blogs.cnn.com to read the e-mails.
By Dana Ford. CNN
(CNN) – The Army announced Tuesday that a sergeant first class assigned to an assault prevention program at Fort Hood, Texas, is under investigation for sexual assault.
The soldier, who was not named in an Army statement, has been suspended from all duties.
Specifically, the soldier is under investigation for “pandering, abusive sexual contact, assault and maltreatment of subordinates,” the statement said. Special agents from the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command are conducting the probe.
No charges have been filed.
“This is so contrary to everything upon which the Army was built,” Secretary of the Army John McHugh said during testimony before the House Appropriations Committee Defense subcommittee, according to the statement. “To see this kind of activity happening in our ranks is really heart-wrenching and sickening.”
McHugh spoke generally about sex abuse crimes in the military.
“As I said to our new Brigadier General Corps when I spoke to them about two weeks ago, ‘You can do everything from this point forward in your military career perfectly, but if you fail on this, you have failed the Army’,” he reportedly said.
The solider was assigned as a Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention program coordinator when the allegations surfaced.
Washington (CNN) – With a congressional hearing set for week’s end, President Obama vowed Monday to hold the Internal Revenue Service accountable if reports of political targeting turn out to be true.
“If in fact IRS personnel engaged in the kind of practices that have been reported on and were intentionally targeting conservative groups, then that’s outrageous. And there’s no place for it,” Obama told reporters.
“And they have to be held fully accountable. Because the IRS as an independent agency requires absolute integrity, and people have to have confidence that they’re … applying the laws in a nonpartisan way.”
Documents set to be released this week by the IRS watchdog show that the agency targeted tea party organizations and other groups focused on government spending and the federal debt that were seeking tax-exempt status.
The IRS also applied extra scrutiny to applicants with statements that “criticize how the country is run” or that sought to educate the public on how to “make America a better place to live,” designations that would have included conservative political groups looking to apply for 501(c)(4) status. Those disclosures are included in the appendix of an inspector general’s report, obtained by CNN, that has caused widespread anger among lawmakers on both sides of the aisle as well as conservative groups.
By Alan Duke, CNN
updated 10:24 PM EDT, Thu May 9, 2013
“THE KING OF POP”
Los Angeles (CNN) – Michael Jackson appeared paranoid, repeating himself and shivering from chills in his final days, his longtime makeup artist testified Thursday.
“This was not the man I knew,” Karen Faye testified. “He was acting like a person I didn’t recognize.”
Faye, who did Jackson’s makeup and hair for 27 years, was the sixth witness called by lawyers for Michael Jackson’s mother and children in their wrongful death lawsuit against concert promoter AEG Live. She testified Thursday and will return to the stand Friday in a Los Angeles courtroom.
The Jacksons contend that AEG Live is liable in the pop icon’s June 25, 2009, death from an overdose of a surgical anesthetic because it negligently hired, retained or supervised the doctor treating him.
Michael Jackson’s brightest and darkest moments brought laughter and tears as Faye testified.
A new CNN/Time/ORC International Poll indicates four in 10 Americans say they are willing to give up some civil liberties to fight terrorism, and suggests worries about terrorism have edged up after the Boston Marathon bombings.
The national survey shows that concerns about terrorism are up slightly, with 40% saying they worry that someone in their family will become a victim of terrorism, up 6 percentage points from a 2011 CNN poll conducted on the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks.
The survey also indicates that support for government monitoring of the Internet is down 8 points from right after 9/11, although there is still majority support: 55%. However, there is widespread and growing approval of the use of surveillance cameras in public places, with 81% saying they are in favor of it, nearly a 20 point jump from 2001.
The poll, conducted April 30, 2013, has a sampling error of +/-4 percentage points.
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By Terry Freiden, CNN Justice Producer
Washington (CNN) – The Justice Department late Tuesday formally filed its case against Lance Armstrong and his company Tailwind Sports for millions of dollars that the U.S. Postal Service spent to sponsor the cycling team.
“The USPS paid approximately $40 million to sponsor the USPS cycling team from 1998 to 2004,” the court document says.
The government said it was intervening to recover triple the amount of the sponsorship funds under the False Claims Act, which could bring a total of more than $100 million in damages.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has been charged in federal court with use of a weapon of mass destruction and malicious destruction of property resulting in death.
The statutory charges authorize a penalty, upon conviction, of death or imprisonment for life or any term of years, according to a statement from the Department of Justice.
Tsarnaev had his initial court appearance today from his hospital room.
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The dead Boston Marathon bombing suspect has been identified as Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, and the one still being sought is his younger brother, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, several sources said Friday.
The older Tsarnaev died overnight in an exchange of gunfire with police.
Much of Boston is on lockdown as authorities search door to door for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
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JAKE MILLER /
CBS NEWS/ April 7, 2013, 2:27 PM
Gov. Dan Malloy, D-Conn., whose state was wracked by tragedy in December when a gunman killed 20 small children and six faculty members at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., slammed the National Rifle Association Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union,” saying NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre “reminds me of the clowns at the circus – they get the most attention.”
“This guy is so out of whack, it’s unbelievable,” Malloy said, saying the NRA simply will not compromise “on anything to do with guns.”
Instead, Malloy said, the NRA is protecting “the ability of the gun industry to sell as many guns to as many people as possible – even if they’re deranged, mentally ill, a criminal background, they don’t care. They want to sell guns.” FULL ARTICLE