Political News from Yahoo

Kerry: US open to talks with Iran over Iraq

WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry says the Obama administration is willing to talk with Iran over deteriorating security conditions in Iraq and is not ruling out potential U.S.-Iranian military cooperation in stemming the advance of Sunni extremists. Kerry also says U.S. drone strikes "may well" be an option.

Pentagon orders amphibious ship to Persian Gulf

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered the amphibious transport dock ship USS Mesa Verde into the Persian Gulf as concern grows over a militant group's advancement toward Iraq's capital.

Hillary Clinton says U.S. needs woman in charge like Germany has Merkel

Hillary Clinton has told a German magazine the United States should follow Germany, where Angela Merkel is chancellor, and have a woman in charge. "We are way behind you in Germany on this," the former secretary of state told stern magazine in an interview to be published in its next edition on Wednesday. Clinton, a former senator and the wife of the former U.S. President Bill Clinton, is widely expected to run for the White House in 2016. Clinton, meanwhile, said she understood Germany's anger at revelations that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) had listened into Merkel's mobile phone as part of its large scale surveillance of electronic communications in Germany, America's close ally.

US embassy in Baghdad to send some personnel out

WASHINGTON (AP) — With Baghdad threatened by the advance of an al-Qaida-inspired insurgency, the State Department is reinforcing security at the U.S. Embassy in Iraq's capital — and sending some personnel out of town.

Iraq PM security errors set stage for crisis: experts

Iraqi premier Nuri al-Maliki's mishandling of security and perceived sidelining of Sunni Arabs set the stage for a major militant offensive, but factors such as Syria's civil war also played a role, experts say. Maliki's opponents accuse him of sectarian discrimination against the Sunni minority, centralising power and moving toward dictatorship, while the prime minister insists he is working to keep the country safe. "He's appointed every senior officer in the military currently serving, so issues like illegal arrests, torture, extraction of bribes to free detainees, etc. I'd lay at Maliki's feet," said Kirk Sowell, a political risk analyst and publisher of the Inside Iraqi Politics newsletter. Anthony Cordesman of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies, agreed.

Tunisia eyes two elections in October, November

Tunisia's electoral commission on Monday proposed holding long-planned parliamentary elections in October and a presidential poll in November after the political parties agreed a deal following months of negotiations. "The draft timetable that we have presented (proposes) legislative elections on October 26, the first round of the presidential election on November 23, and the second round on December 28," the commission's chairman, Chafik Sarsar, told journalists. He was speaking after meeting National Assembly speaker Mustapha Ben Jaafar. Sarsar hailed the breakthrough in negotiations between the political parties, which allowed for an agreement on Friday between the Islamist Ennahda party and its opponents, on holding the parliamentary election first.

Gunmen kill at least 15 in northern Nigerian market

Maiduguri (Nigeria) (AFP) - At least 15 people were killed when suspected Boko Haram gunmen stormed a market in northern Nigeria late on Sunday, witnesses and a security source said. "Sunday is normally a market day and people from neighbouring villages had gathered at the local market in Daku when the insurgents laid siege," said grocery seller Laraba Simon. "Scores of people escaped with bullet wounds while dozens of shops, stalls, houses, vehicles, motorcycles and assorted foodstuff were set ablaze by the rampaging attackers." Laraba said the insurgents "surrounded the village with sophisticated weapons and petrol bombs".

Israel PM calls Abbas, says expects help finding teens

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday telephoned Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas and said he expected him to help ensure the safe return of three kidnapped teenagers, a statement said. Abbas's office also issued a statement condemning both the kidnapping of the three youths and the results of a massive Israeli crackdown to find the perpetrators. "I expect you to help in the return of the kidnapped youths and the capture of the kidnappers," Netanyahu told the Palestinian leader. It was their first telephone conversation in nearly a year, and came as Israeli forces conducted the biggest arrest operation in years, focusing predominantly on the Islamist Hamas movement which Netanyahu has accused of kidnapping the three youths in the southern West Bank.

Libya’s Trail of Contraband

On the porous desert border with Egypt, guns, cash and other illicit goods flow from Libya’s lawless frontier toward buyers in the Middle East.

The Buddhist Punk Reforming Drug Rehab

Noah Levine is a heavily tattooed , formerly incarcerated addict. Now sober, he’s trying to reform drug and alcohol rehab through Buddhism and punk music.

‘Slow Web’ Will Save Our Brains

A recently released app invites users to wrestle with the text of a modern classic. Is there hope for more tech projects like this?

The Negev Desert’s Vanishing Bedouin

For decades, Israel has been funneling the Negev’s Bedouin tribes onto reservation towns that offer little economic hope to the families living there.

Who’s That British ‘Bum’ Girl?

Curious about that cheery, blonde Brit asking Americans how they clean their bottoms on TV? It may be for an advert, but Cherry Healey’s obsession is real—and very personal.

US Spies Don’t Know Who to Hit in Iraq

The U.S. military has the capability to conduct air strikes over Iraq within hours. The problem is they don’t know exactly who they are supposed to be targeting.

Obama’s $120 Million School Safety Plan

Metal detectors and school safety officers might help when it comes to school shootings, but the real answer is early detection. Obama’s 2015 plan budgets for just that.