Monday’s Mini-Report


Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Tom Ricks appeared on Fox News today, and ended up participating in the network’s shortest-ever segment on Benghazi. When he said Fox News is “operating as the wing of the Republican Party,” it was apparently an interview-ender.

* Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi issued a decree on Thursday giving himself broad and unchecked powers, but today claimed he’s limiting the scope of his new authority.

* Afghanistan: “A suicide bomber detonated a vehicle loaded with explosives near a joint coalition-Afghan security center in a province west of Kabul on Friday, killing two Afghan civilian workers and a woman and wounding at least 90 others.”

* Military planners are “drawing up the broad outlines of a force that would remain in Afghanistan following the handover to Afghan security after 2014, including a small counterterrorism force with an eye toward Al Qaeda.”

* The Obama administration recently considered “explicit rules for the targeted killing of terrorists by unmanned drones,” and there’s reportedly disagreement among officials, with the CIA and Pentagon on one side, and the Justice Department and State Department on the other.

* Mary Schapiro is stepping down as chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission. President Obama intends to make Elisse Walter, a current SEC commissioner, Schapiro’s permanent replacement.

* The U.S. Supreme Court today turned down “an opportunity to consider whether states can ban the insanity defense in criminal cases.”

* Big surprise: “Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Monday abruptly announced he was quitting politics, shaking up the country’s political system just weeks ahead of general elections.”

* And at least in the U.S., it looks like Intrade is no more.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Monday's Mini-Report