Wednesday’s Mini-Report

Updated
 

Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Tensions in Turkey have eased, but protests continue.

* The NSA’s defense: “The head of the National Security Agency said Wednesday that his agency’s extensive electronic surveillance programs have played a critical role in thwarting ‘dozens’ of terrorist attacks aimed at U.S. targets and abroad.”

* Snowden speaks: “Self-identified NSA leaker Edward Snowden broke the low profile he has kept since passing details of two classified American government surveillance programs to reporters, saying he is ‘neither traitor nor hero’ in an interview with the South China Morning Post.”

* CIA shake-up: “The deputy C.I.A. director, Michael J. Morell, retired from his post Wednesday, after managing the resignation of the former C.I.A. director David H. Petraeus over an extramarital affair, and defending the agency’s performance over the attack on an American diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya.”

* On a related note, Morell will transition to a role on President Obama Intelligence Advisory Board, and he will replaced by Avril Haines, currently a deputy assistant to the president and legal adviser at the National Security Council.

* Syria: “At least 30 Shiite Muslim residents of a village in eastern Syria were killed in a reprisal raid by rebels, the government and opposition fighters and activists said Wednesday, the latest in a string of massacres underscoring the increasingly sectarian nature of the Syrian conflict.”

* Wait, we’re still talking about this? “The U.S. special operations team in Libya were never ordered to stand down during last September’s deadly terrorist attack on the American Consulate in Benghazi.”

* Because it can be difficult to keep track of the details, Timothy B. Lee summarizes everything the public has learned about PRISM to date.

* Remember the culture of corruption? This was a doozy: “A jury convicted former Rep. Rick Renzi of 17 out of 32 counts in his federal corruption trial in Tucson, Ariz., Tuesday, including convictions for wire fraud, conspiracy and extortion stemming from his time in office.”

* Immigration: “Democrats want it to be crystal clear. They don’t think Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) is crucial to passing immigration reform. So they aren’t negotiating with him over his non-starter amendment to make a pathway to citizenship contingent upon establishing an unrealistic border security regime.”

* And the White House did a really terrific job with this one: “What The Great Gatsby Teaches Us About America In 1 Chart.”

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Wednesday's Mini-Report

Updated