Leon Panetta

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Ex-Spy Chief: Get Ready for 'Cyber 9/11'

Mike McConnell says we've had our warning

(Newser) - First, it was defense secretary Leon Panetta warning of a " cyber Pearl Harbor ." Now, the former director of national intelligence says it's time to prepare for "the cyber equivalent of the World Trade Center attack," the Financial Times reports. Recent attacks on big banks like... More »

CIA Opens Own Inquiry Into Conduct of Petraeus

Wants to be sure he didn't misuse assets

(Newser) - The CIA announced yesterday that it is opening its own investigation into the conduct of former chief David Petraeus, and sources tell the New York Times the investigation will center around whether Petraeus misused any CIA assets—from security details to private jets—to carry out his affair with Paula... More »

In Emails, Allen Used Pet Names

...but there wasn't anything sexually explicit, a source tells AP

(Newser) - David Petraeus and Paula Broadwell reportedly emailed each other about having "sex under a desk." The emails between the scandal's two other players, John Allen and Jill Kelley, were quite a bit more innocent, a senior official tells the AP . The source says officials who read the... More »

US Nears Decision on Post-2014 Afghan Presence

Gen. John Allen's recommendations under review as scandal grabs him

(Newser) - In the coming weeks, the US will make a decision on the number of troops to remain in Afghanistan after the planned drawdown in 2014, Reuters reports. "My hope is that we'll be able to complete this process in the next few weeks," says Defense Secretary Leon... More »

Kerry Eyed as Defense Secretary

Susan Rice leading candidate to replace Hillary Clinton, insiders say

(Newser) - With Leon Panetta saying he'd "like to get back to California," President Obama is looking hard at John Kerry as his replacement at the Pentagon, reports the Washington Post . The move would be part of a major Obama administration shake-up that would include a permanent replacement for... More »

Obama Plans Drastic Cabinet Shake-Up

Clinton, Geithner, Panetta, Holder all could be gone

(Newser) - After a first term almost devoid of Cabinet shakeups, President Obama is now working on plans to replace virtually his entire team. Hillary Clinton and Tim Geithner have both publicly announced their exits, but Leon Panetta, Eric Holder, Ray LaHood, Steven Chu, Ken Salazaar, and Lisa Jackson are all expected... More »

Panetta Warns of 'Cyber Pearl Harbor'

He urges Congress to pass cybersecurity bill

(Newser) - America needs to beef up its defense or face a "cyber Pearl Harbor" attack from foreign hackers capable of dismantling the nation's infrastructure, Leon Panetta warns. Nations like Iran and China or militant groups could "gain control of critical switches," the defense secretary said in a... More »

US Ends 26-Year Ban on New Zealand Warships

Panetta pledges closer ties with Kiwis

(Newser) - Leon Panetta has patched up a Reagan-era rift between the US and New Zealand. The defense secretary announced that the US is lifting a ban on Kiwi warships in its ports that has been in place since 1986, reports the BBC . The ban was introduced after New Zealand declared itself... More »

China's Xi Emerges to Greet Panetta

Future leader appears healthy, despite illness rumors

(Newser) - Xi Jinping, the man expected to become China's new leader next month, appeared in public again today, this time to meet with Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta, reports the Washington Post . Xi's sudden and unexplained cancellation of several high profile meetings, including one with Hillary Clinton, had fueled... More »

Iran: 'Nothing Will Remain' of Israel in Attack

As Netanyahu seeks to draw 'red lines' around Tehran

(Newser) - Iran and Israel are rattling the sabers in earnest today, with the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard brashly warning that "nothing will remain" of Israel if it should attack Tehran over its nuclear program. Speaking at a news conference today, Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari said that, if attacked,... More »

SEAL Parents: Obama Put Our Kids in Danger

Panetta hints at reprisals for author of bin Laden book

(Newser) - The parents of one of the members of SEAL Team Six say President Obama endangered their son, and the entire unit, by publicly identifying it as the team that killed Osama Bin Laden. "Aaron called me up and said, 'Mom, you need to wipe your social media clean... More »

Panetta: Iran Attack Is On the Table

He touts ties to Israel in visit with Ehud Barak

(Newser) - "All options" are on the table when it comes to preventing Iran from developing a nuclear weapon—including military force, Leon Panetta said today during a trip to Israel. Panetta said force was a last resort, but that if Iran persisted in its quest, "we have options that... More »

Panetta: Aleppo Attack Is 'Nail in Assad's Coffin'

Hundreds of thousands flee onslaught

(Newser) - As brutal fighting continued for control of Syria's largest city, a furious Leon Panetta vowed that the regime's assault on Aleppo would be a "nail in the coffin" of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Some 200,000 residents have fled the besieged city as rebels battle to hold... More »

Al-Awlaki's Dad Sues US

Along with mother of another American killed in drone strike

(Newser) - The families of three Americans killed in US drone strikes in Yemen are suing the government, arguing that it had no right to assassinate them without a trial. The wrongful-death suit was filed yesterday by Nasser al-Awlaki, father of Anwar al-Awlaki, and Sarah Khan, mother of Samir Khan, the BBC... More »

Panetta: Pakistan Reaching 'Limits of Our Patience'

Defense secretary arrives in Afghanistan amid mounting violence

(Newser) - Leon Panetta arrived in Afghanistan amid worsening violence today, and he wasn't shy about laying the blame for that violence on a once-vital ally. "It is difficult to achieve peace in Afghanistan as long as there is safe haven for terrorists in Pakistan," said the defense secretary,... More »

Panetta: Asia-Pacific Strategy Isn't Threat to China

US will have 60% of fleet there by 2020

(Newser) - Defense chief Leon Panetta said today that America's new military focus on the Asia-Pacific region is not intended to threaten Beijing. Panetta appeared to offer an olive branch to the communist power, saying the often feuding rivals must learn to work better together. "We both understand the differences... More »

Panetta Limits F-22 Flights After Pilot Blackouts

He orders Air Force to take steps to protect fliers

(Newser) - Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has ordered the Air Force to take extra steps to protect F-22 pilots while officials investigate reports of dizziness and fainting spells in the cockpit. Panetta has ordered the service to keep all F-22 flights close enough to landing strips so that pilots will be able... More »

US Yanks Almost Half of Okinawa Marines

Because Japan doesn't want them there

(Newser) - The US military has worn out its welcome in Japan, so the two countries today announced an agreement to pull about 9,000 Marines from the Okinawa base, redeploying them in other places in the Asia-Pacific region, like Hawaii and the US territory of Guam. Japan has grown increasingly restless... More »

Panetta Reveals Another Prostitute Scandal

Alleged 2011 incident involved Marines in Brazil

(Newser) - What's more shocking than a prostitute scandal? Two prostitute scandals! Defense Secretary Leon Panetta yesterday revealed an alleged 2011 incident in which three Marines on a US Embassy security team reportedly pushed a prostitute out of a car in Brasilia after arguing about—you guessed it—payment. The Marines,... More »

Panetta Feels Bad About $800K in Flights He's Taken

Defense secretary is open to 'alternatives'

(Newser) - Leon Panetta has taken at least 27 trips home to California since becoming secretary of defense in July, which have cost taxpayers more than $800,000 in all—but he does feel bad about it. The Pentagon chief expressed his regrets at a Pentagon briefing yesterday and said he is... More »

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