Quote of the day.
“Ramadan is a wonderful time of year for me. It’s the time to reflect. ... Your hunger is supposed to remind you that there are people who are fasting involuntarily all over this world. … I think what you do is you dial your energy level back just a tad. Instead of running, you walk …” Rep. Keith Ellison on being Muslim in Congress during Ramadan.
1. Obama, lawmakers square off over NSA authority.
The Obama administration squared off with skeptical lawmakers Tuesday over efforts to terminate the government’s authority to collect phone records of millions of Americans, a proposition that exposed sharp divisions among members of Congress.
2. House G.O.P. sets new offensive on Obama goals.
Congressional Republicans are moving to gut many of President Obama’s top priorities with the sharpest spending cuts in a generation and a new push to hold government financing hostage unless the president’s signature health care law is stripped of money this fall.
(New York Times)
3. Rhetoric ramps ups over immigration.
The White House lashed out at House Republican leaders over immigration Tuesday after months of treading gingerly, revealing a sense of growing frustration inside the Obama administration with the sluggish pace of the reform effort.
4. 9 in Deportation Protest Are Held in Bid to Re-enter U.S.
Nine young immigrants who had lived in the United States illegally were in custody Tuesday after a protest against deportations by the Obama administration in which they tried to enter the country without immigration papers through the border station at Nogales, Ariz.
(New York Times)
5. Is Snowden about to become a refugee in Russia?
Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden could walk out of Moscow''s Sheremetyevo airport on Wednesday as a documented Russian political refugee, according to the Kremlin-connected lawyer who''s been handling his affairs.
(Christian Science Monitor)
6. A nightmare day for the pope's security detail.
Don't blame the pope's Swiss Guards if they had nightmares Monday night. There was plenty to disturb their sleep: a mobbed motorcade, a bomb scare and protesters clashing with police.
7. CIA pulling back in Afghanistan.
The CIA has begun closing clandestine bases in Afghanistan, marking the start of a drawdown from a region that transformed the agency from an intelligence service struggling to emerge from the Cold War to a counterterrorism force with its own prisons, paramilitary teams, and armed Predator drones.
8. Brazen attacks at prisons raise worries of Al Qaeda's strength in Iraq.
The brazen assaults on two prisons in Iraq this week were significant not only for the hundreds of prisoners who were freed but also for what they indicate about the growing capabilities of Al Qaeda’s Iraq affiliate.
(New York Times)
9. Egyptian general calls for millions to protest against 'terrorism.’
Egypt's army chief has called for mass protests against "terrorism" after an explosion outside a police building in northern Egypt killed one police conscript and injured 19 officers and civilians — bringing the death toll from fighting since the overthrow of Mohamed Morsi to at least 190.
10. UN chemical weapons experts arrives in Syria.
A senior United Nations team tasked with investigating the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria's civil war arrived in Damascus Wednesday to discuss with government officials a possible inquiry into such attacks.