News and Analysis (3/6/15)

“I was spying on innocent people. They were not involved in criminal activity.  They were not espousing terrorist rhetoric, but I was still spying on them and giving the FBI the information they wanted”:

“Iraqi forces pressed their offensive against the Islamic State group Friday, expecting to reach the outskirts of the militant-held city of Tikrit within hours, a day after the extremists reportedly ‘bulldozed’ a famed archaeological site in the area”:

“[M]ilitants with sledgehammers destroy[ed] ancient artifacts at the Mosul museum…. Last year, the militants destroyed the Mosque of the Prophet …  Jonah…. They also threatened to destroy Mosul’s 850-year old Crooked Minaret, but residents surrounded the structure” …

… “Islamic State militants have set fire to oil wells in the Ajil field east of the city of Tikrit to try to hinder aerial attacks aimed at driving them from the oilfield, a witness and military source said”:

“At least 121 deaths have been reported in police stations since the beginning of 2014, many caused by deprivation of medical care or torture, Amnesty International said in a report released Wednesday that pointed to a “near total lack of accountability for abuses” by security forces”:

“Netanyahu would have us believe the Iranian regime wants to exterminate all Jews. But that’s hard to square with the continuous presence of a Jewish community in Iran—today the largest in the Muslim Middle East.” The “people who gave us the disastrous Iraq war and ISIS—must be repudiated”:

“Turkish law can play both ways, however. This week, a judge ordered Erdogan to pay 10,000 Turkish Lira ($4,000) in compensation for insulting an artist” and before election to national office Erdogan was once jailed for “inciting hatred based on religious differences“:

“[L]etters to parents said their children had been friends with [another girl who had disappeared by going abroad two months earlier], and asked for permission to take a formal statement. But instead of delivering the letters to the parents, police handed them to the girls themselves, who hid them”:

“[F]ormer extremists have a central role to play in the argument against radical temptations. They have a credibility that governments lack”:

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