Morning Headlines

Boko Haram Increasing Terror Attacks In Nigeria
It is suspected that Boko Haram is responsible for another terror attack in Nigeria, namely a bomb blast that killed as many as 50 people in the city of Abuja during morning rush hour. The attack comes less than 24 hours after the terrorist organization massacred 60 people along the border with Cameroon.

The weekend attacks were the continuation of an increase in violence that began late last week with attacks on teachers in a Nigerian village.

“The attackers, who are no doubt Boko Haram insurgents, attacked Amchaka and nearby villages this morning, hurling IEDs (improvised explosive devices) into homes and setting them on fire,” said Baba Shehu Gulumba, a local government officialBama local government administrator, according to The Brisbane Times.

“They then went on a shooting spree, opening fire on confused residents as they tried to flee, killing 60 people and injuring several others,” he added.

NATO Secretary-General: Alliance Misjudged Putin
NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen discussed with The Wall Street Journal what he calls “the new security environment” in Europe in the wake of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent aggression.

“We in Europe have disarmed too much, for too long. We can’t continue to cut defense budgets deeply while Russia is increasing her defense budget,” says Rasmussen.  “It has created a growing gap across the Atlantic between the U.S. and Europe. Today the U.S. spends around 75% of the overall NATO defense investment. I’m concerned that in the long run it will weaken the trans-Atlantic alliance if this trend continues.”

Rasmussen says Putin’s worldview shifted dramatically in the last decade, yet NATO and Europe failed to sufficiently appreciate the change continuing to engage and entertain Putin. Did the gamble pay off with any security dividends?

“Obviously not,” Mr. Rasmussen replies without hesitation. “We have seen a revisionist Russia trying to redraw the European map by force. That’s a wake-up call. That’s a completely new security environment and of course we have to adapt to that.” He adds: “This goes far beyond Crimea.”

After Ukraine, Kazakhstan’s Opposition Growing Fearful
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and annexation of Crimea have alarmed the ranks of the marginalized opposition of Kazakhstan, along with local experts who see Moscow’s integration projects as a threat to Kazakhstan’s independence, reports The Diplomat.

Time To Rethink Cuba Sanctions?
Reihan Salam of Reuters says it is time for Congress to reconsider sanctions on Cuba.

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