With its step-by-step return to Asia, the U.S. is looking for ways to send a message to China without picking a fight. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is visiting the region, emphasizing that the U.S. is back but with a much lighter touch. In Vietnam, he's hoping to build stronger defense ties.
Tensions continue to grow between the U.S. and Pakistan. In an article in the National Journal, Michael Hirsh writes, "Washington and other capitals continue to watch, helplessly, as a middle-sized developing country defies a superpower and the NATO alliance with virtual impunity."
U.S. soldiers are trying to deal a crippling blow to the Taliban in the eastern Afghan province of Ghazni. It's one of the last major Taliban strongholds, but the American forces are trying to do the job on a short timetable.
An oversight board designed to protect privacy rights by making sure the government doesn't overstep its bounds has been authorized for years. But politics seems to be getting in the way of launching the panel.
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