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Friday Political Grab Bag: Obama To Israel, Iran - 'I Don't Bluff'

Obama told The Atlantic that he doesn't "bluff" as president of the U.S. when he says he's willing to use the military to stop Iran from gaining a nuclear weapon... Maryland became the eighth state to legalize gay marriage... Virginia approved a controversial anti-abortion bill requiring ultrasound which the governor says he will sign.
NPR

NYPD Spies On Muslims, Stirs National Outcry

The New York Police Department has been monitoring Muslim students in cities as far as Philadelphia, Buffalo and Syracuse, according to the Associated Press. Americans question whether this is a privacy breach or a necessary safety measure. Host Michel Martin speaks with the an AP investigate reporter and a member of the national Muslim Students Association.
NPR

In Mock Village, A New Afghan Mission Takes Shape

U.S. forces intend to stay in Afghanistan through 2014. But they are preparing to launch a new approach that would put Afghan troops in the lead when it comes to fighting the Taliban. These American advisers are currently being trained at an Army base in Louisiana.
NPR

Officials Look For Signs Of Al-Qaida Surge In Syria

Intelligence officials aren't entirely sure how large a role, at this point, al-Qaida is playing in the Syrian uprising and whether it has ties to the opposition at all. What they seem more certain of is that al-Qaida has a presence there and will try to make itself relevant again by exploiting it.
NPR

White House Issues New Rules On Al-Qaida Suspects

In defiance of Congress, the Obama administration has issued new rules on how it will comply with a defense law mandating that many al-Qaida suspects be sent into military custody: It will issue waivers in many cases. Meanwhile, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing Wednesday on the trouble with waivers and the need for flexibility in dealing with suspects.

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