Daily Archives: March 26, 2014

Secret Service Agents in Obama’s Detail Sent Home After Boozy Night

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Three Secret Service agents in charge of protecting President Obama in Amsterdam were sent home Sunday after going out for a night of drinking, sources familiar with the incident told NBC News.

One of the agents was found intoxicated in a hotel hallway Sunday morning by hotel security, who contacted the U.S. Embassy in the Netherlands, the sources said.

The embassy then alerted Secret Service managers on the presidential trip.

The agents were put on administrative leave but have not faced any other disciplinary action, the sources said.

Secret Service officials insist that they have raised their standards and toughened the codes of conduct following a scandal in Cartagena, Colombia, in April 2012. That’s when a dozen agents and officers had gone out, drank heavily and then brought prostitutes to their hotel rooms prior to the president’s arrival.

Obama landed in the Netherlands on Monday for a week of diplomacy in Europe and Saudi Arabia.

 NBC News.com.

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​Software problems will set back F-35 joint strike fighter another year – report

Delivery of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter will be more than a year behind schedule due to ongoing software problems, according to a US government report. The delay marks the latest snag in the ongoing saga of the world’s most expensive aircraft.

According to a new Government Accountability Office report, the F-35’s mission management system software needs a vast debugging effort to meet the plane’s various requirements.

“Challenges in development and testing of mission systems software continued through 2013, due largely to delays in software delivery, limited capability in the software when delivered, and the need to fix problems and retest multiple software versions,” the GAO auditors wrote.

“The Director of Operational Test and Evaluation (DOT&E) predicts delivery of warfighting capabilities could be delayed by as much as 13 months. Delays of this magnitude will likely limit the warfighting capabilities that are delivered to support the military services’ initial operational capabilities—the first of which is scheduled for July 2015—and at this time it is not clear what those specific capabilities will be because testing is still ongoing.”

The GAO said the plane needs eight million new lines of software code to overcome the current functionary glitches.

The report added that only 13 percent of the Block 2B segment of software had been tested as of last January. The target for this prime operational component of the plane was 27 percent.

Earlier this year, the Pentagon‘s chief weapons tester, Michael Gilmore, provided an in-depth report to Congress on the F-35’s technical features, emphasizing what he calls the “unacceptable” characteristics of the aircraft’s Block 2B software, according to a draft obtained by Reuters in January.

“Initial results with the new increment of Block 2B software indicate deficiencies still exist in fusion, radar, electronic warfare, navigation, electro-optical target system, distributed aperture system, helmet-mounted display system, and datalink,” Gilmore’s report said.

Due to the high number of technical problems, the 2B software overhaul would not be finished until November 2015 – 13 months later than originally planned, the report predicted. This scenario would delay release to the F-35 fleet until July 2016, a year after the Marine Corps anticipated having “initial operating capability” with its version of the joint strike fighter.

The all-in-one plane, designed for a host of potential missions, is to have similar versions for the US Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps.

GAO auditors questioned whether the US government can still afford the F-35 program. Plans are for the purchase of 2,457 planes for the US military by 2037. Development and acquisition costs are estimated to be about $400 billion.

To remain on schedule for 2037, the Pentagon must “steeply” increase spending on the program over the next five years, the GAO said, to the tune of $12.6 billion per year for the next 23 years for only research and acquisition costs. Pentagon brass has called the $1 trillion estimated operation and maintenance costs “unaffordable,” the GAO reported.

In response to the GAO findings, the F-35 program’s head, Maj. Gen. Christopher Bogdan, said in a statement that “software continues to remain our number one technical risk on the program, and we have instituted disciplined systems engineering processes to address the complexity of writing, testing and integrating software.”

The report, released Monday, detailed only the latest problems with what some have dubbed “the jet that ate the Pentagon,” plagued with chronic cost overruns and delayed deliveries.

The Lockheed Martin fighter jet’s price tag is estimated to end up costing US taxpayers more than $1 trillion, factoring in maintenance expenses. Though, the Pentagon said in August that the program’s estimated cost was “slashed” to a trim $857 billion.

Critics of the plane’s many functions say it’s too loaded down to be any more capable than the older, less-expensive F-16 fighter jet, which the F-35 is to replace along with F/A-18s, and A-10s.

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program, which started in 2001, is 70 percent over initial cost estimates and years behind schedule. Despite its fantastic price tag, the F-35 has even failed to generate the number of jobs its proponents had originally promised to Congress.

In January, the Center for International Policy said Lockheed had “greatly exaggerated” its claim that the F-35 program will sustain 125,000 American jobs in 46 US states in an effort to win support for the program.

In addition to the US, Lockheed is making F-35 versions for Australia, Britain, Canada, Denmark, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, and Turkey. Israel and Japan have placed orders for the fighter jet. South Korea ordered 40 joint strike fighters on Monday – the same day as the release of the GAO report.

Despite the myriad problems in the F-35’s development, the first trans-Atlantic flight of an F-35 fighter jet is set for July, as the plane will take part in two international air shows near London, Reuters reported.

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Hunt begins to find black boxes for doomed Flight MH370

 

Now that satellite data has confirmed that the missing Malaysian airliner crashed into the Indian Ocean, the race is on to find the crucial voice and data recorders, the so-called black boxes, before a battery-powered homing device runs out.

After a 17-day wait for confirmation that the Boeing 777, one of the world’s most reliable planes, was lost with 239 people on board somewhere over the southern Indian Ocean, a United Nations search team is working round the clock to try and pinpoint the so-called black boxes.

Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said Tuesday that the search area had been narrowed down to an area about the size of Texas and Oklahoma combined.

But Air Marshal Mark Binskin, Australia’s deputy defense chief, issued a sobering reminder of how challenging the search will be.

“We’re not searching for a needle in a haystack – we’re still trying to define where the haystack is.”

The search is made all the more urgent because the battery-powered ping the black boxes emit, a kind of homing signal to help locate them, is only sent out for around 30 days after a crash – before the batteries run out. This leaves another 15 days or so to find them.

But so far the growing international team scouring the southern Indian Ocean has not found any wreckage or debris that can definitely be linked to the plane.

Although British satellite company Inmarsat has said for sure that Flight MH370 went down in a southern corridor of the Indian Ocean and several countries have reported finding floating debris, the exact position of where the plane crashed into the sea is still a mystery.

Eight satellite pings were sent by the aircraft between 1.11 am and 8.11 am – over eight hours after it officially lost contact with air traffic controllers.

The new method “gives the approximate direction of travel, plus or minus about 100 miles, to a track line,” Chris McLaughlin, senior vice-president for external affairs at Inmarsat, told Sky News. “Unfortunately this is a 1990s satellite over the Indian Ocean that is not GPS-equipped.”

With a lack of definite information experts in weather patterns and ocean currents will try and direct those scouring the waves to pinpoint where the plane went down.

We’ve got to get lucky. It is a race to get to the area in time to catch the black box pinger while it’s still working,” John Goglia, a former member of the US National Transportation Safety Board, told AP.

Plan A: Pinger locators from US

The US Navy’s Pacific Fleet is part of the international flotilla amassing over 2,300 kilometers west of Perth, Australia, and one of the Navy’s towed pinger locators is en route to the search area, AP reports.

This crucial bit of kit is a 30-inch long cylindrical microphone, which is towed slowly underwater in a grid pattern behind a ship. It can pick up a ping from a black box – which is actually a red cylinder – from about a mile away.

The microphone is attached to about 20,000 feet of cable and is guided deep underwater by a yellow triangular carrier with a wing span of 3 feet and a shark’s fin on top that looks akin to a stingray.

Human operators and computers on board the ship listen for any signals that may locate the ping.

As well as the towed ping locator, the Australian Navy is sending the ship Ocean Shield to the area, which is equipped with acoustic detention equipment.

Plan B: Sonars to scour seabed

If no strong signals are detected from the black boxes before their batteries run out then the search teams must move to system known as side-scan sonar.

These devises are like sonar used to detect submarines; they send a sound to the sea’s depths and analyze the echo from the seabed to map the ocean floor. They are looking for any abnormalities or unusual shapes on the ocean floor.

The devises can be fitted on unmanned mini-submarines that can dive to the depths of the ocean for up to 20 hours at a time.

Once evidence of debris from the aircraft is found on the seabed, an underwater submersible with a high resolution camera is sent down to visually inspect the area and then using remote control cutting devices and robots pulls the black box out of the wreckage.

Finally, secret intelligence from nuclear submarines may be used, if that can be done without revealing their sophisticated instruments or the location of these clandestine vessels.

Clues in history

Over the past decade there have been crashes similar to the disappearance of light MH370, which may help search teams this time around.

The most obvious is Air France Flight 447, which went down in the middle of the Atlantic, in 2009. It took $40 million, four lengthy search expeditions and a two-year wait before the black boxes were found.

The ensuing data showed that the plane went down mid-cruise largely due to a number of poor decisions by the pilots.

A second example was a Helios jet 737, which lost pressurization and oxygen over Greece in 2005, suffocating the pilot and co-pilot. The plane then flew on autopilot until it ran out of fuel and crashed, but unlike the Malaysian Boeing, it crashed over land and not in one of the deepest and most inaccessible parts of the ocean.

This Underwater Microphone Could Find the Missing Malaysia Airlines Jet | Autopia | Wired.com.

 

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Egypt’s Pres Mansour calls on Arab leaders to fight terrorism, extremism and illiteracy

President Adly Mansour

In his speech Tuesday at the Arab League summit in Kuwait, Egypt’s interim President Adly Mansour called on his Arab counterparts to join in the fight against terrorism.

Terrorism is “threatening the whole region,” said Mansour, but he insisted that terrorist groups would only make their opponents “more determined to uproot them.”

Mansour urged those attending the summit to reactivate the Arab Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism, an anti-terrorism pact signed in 1998 by 18 out of 22 members of the Arab League, but which has never been enforced.

Mansour suggested that a meeting be held before June with Arab justice ministers and interior ministers to gauge how much of the pact is currently being implemented.

The pact stipulates that signatories must not give shelter to terrorists, Mansour noted, which means that Arab states must hand over persons for whom Egypt has issued arrest warrants.

Many leaders of the now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood have used Qatar as a refuge from an ongoing security crackdown on its members by Egyptian authorities.

On 14 March, two Brotherhood leaders were arrested by INTERPOL in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia – both strong backers of Egypt’s interim authorities and adamant critics of ousted president Mohamed Morsi.

During his 29-minute speech, Mansour dwelled mostly on terrorism. However, he also spoke of the Syrian and Palestinian conflicts – key points of this year’s summit.

“We are exerting efforts to mediate between different opposition forces in Syria in order to reach a unified vision towards a political solution,” the only kind of solution which will end the Syrian conflict, Mansour said.

Mansour further affirmed that the Palestinian conflict remains one of the main challenges to the region, expressing his full support to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and for the need to end the Israeli occupation and return to the pre-1967 Palestine with east Jerusalem as its capital.

He also slammed Israeli’s assault on the Gaza Strip, calling on “human rights defenders to play their role in lifting the misery from Palestinians in Gaza.”

Beyond these conflicts, Mansour also highlighted two other problems in the region: illiteracy and extremism.

The next 10 years should be dedicated to eradicating illiteracy from the region, Mansour proposed, with the first step being a meeting in the next two months between Arab education ministers for the purpose of implementing an agenda.

As for extremism, Mansour suggested that Arab countries adopt a unified strategy to confront “extremist ideology.”

Stressing that terrorism cannot be faced with just security solutions, Mansour offered that a meeting be held at the Bibliotheca Alexandrina to host intellectuals and experts to develop a framework to defy extremist thinking.

Egypt has been rocked by a wave of militant attacks on police and army targets since Morsi’s ouster on 3 July, sparked by a subsequent crackdown on his supporters.

Bombings and shootings in the volatile Sinai Peninsula, and more recently in Cairo and the Nile Delta, have killed tens of security personnel.

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NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander says future Snowden leaks could lead to deaths

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The data that National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden‘s holds could, if released, lead to deaths, the agency’s outgoing director says.

Gen. Keith Alexander said in an interview aired Tuesday on “Special Report with Bret Baier” that the possibility that more information coming from Snowden could cost people their lives represents his “greatest concern.”

“Do you know what he has?” host Baier asked the general.

“We have a good assessment of what he has, yes,” Alexander said.

“And is there a lot more damaging to come?”

“Yes, especially to our military operations and those who are serving overseas,” Alexander replied.

Alexander said he was “hugely disappointed” when he learned that Snowden, who was entrusted with sensitive information, began leaking NSA data last summer.

“I think this will haunt him for the rest of his life,” Alexander said. “Here’s a young guy who made some huge mistakes.”

When asked what he would do with Snowden were he granted 15 minutes alone with him, Alexander said he wouldn’t attack the former analyst, but instead might reveal to him the damage he’s caused the agency, “so he knows the damage — the significant damage to our nation and to our allies.”

Alexander also said the reforms pushed by President Obama, which would require the NSA to prove more direct links from terrorists before acquiring data from telephone companies, are sensible.

“The approach that we put forward … is one that would limit what we get, so it does away with the business record FISA database as we know it today, and we would now work with the telecommunications company on specific numbers that have a terrorist nexus and get only that data,” Alexander said. “This is an approach that I think meets the intent of protecting our civil liberties and privacy and the security of this country.”

Also in the interview, Alexander addressed concerns raised by former President Carter, who on Sunday said he uses snail mail to communicate with foreign leaders for fear his emails are being monitored.

“We’re not [monitoring the emails],” Alexander said. “So he can now go back to writing emails. The reality is, we don’t do that. And if we did, it would be illegal and we’d be … held accountable and responsible.”

via NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander says future Snowden leaks could lead to deaths | Fox News.

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Qaeda Militants Seek Syria Base, U.S. Officials Say

WASHINGTON — Dozens of seasoned militant fighters, including some midlevel planners, have traveled to Syria from Pakistan in recent months in what American intelligence and counterterrorism officials fear is an effort to lay the foundation for future strikes against Europe and the United States.

“We are concerned about the use of Syrian territory by the Al Qaeda organization to recruit individuals and develop the capability to be able not just to carry out attacks inside of Syria, but also to use Syria as a launching pad,” John O. Brennan, the C.I.A. director, told a House panel recently.

The extremists who concern Mr. Brennan are part of a group of Qaeda operatives in Pakistan that has been severely depleted in recent years by a decade of American drone strikes. But the fighters still bring a wide range of skills to the battlefield, such as bomb-building, small-arms tactics, logistics, religious indoctrination and planning, though they are not believed to have experience in launching attacks in the West.

Syria is an appealing base for these operatives because it offers them the relative sanctuary of extremist-held havens — away from drone strikes in Afghanistan and Pakistan — as well as ready access to about 1,200 American and European Muslims who have gone there to fight and could be potential recruits to carry out attacks when they return home. Senior counterterrorism officials have voiced fears in recent months that these Western fighters could be radicalized by the country’s civil war.

New classified intelligence assessments based on information from electronic intercepts, informers and social media posts conclude that Al Qaeda’s senior leadership in Pakistan, including Ayman al-Zawahri, is developing a much more systematic, long-term plan than was previously known to create specific cells in Syria that would identify, recruit and train these Westerners.

Al Qaeda has in the past blessed the creation of local branches in places like Yemen, where an affiliate has tried to strike the United States. But the effort in Syria would signify the first time that senior Qaeda leaders had set up a wing of their own outside Pakistan dedicated to conducting attacks against the West, counterterrorism officials said. It also has the potential to rejuvenate Al Qaeda’s central command, which President Obama has described as being greatly diminished.

The assessment by the United States, however, has some detractors among even its staunchest counterterrorism partners, which also see an increase in Pakistan-based veterans of Al Qaeda among Syrian rebel groups but which disagree over whether they are involved in a coordinated plan to attack the West.

“At this stage, it’s a lot less organized than a directed plan,” said one Western security official. “Some fighters are going to Syria, but they’re going on an ad hoc basis, not at an organized level.”

Most of the operatives identified by intelligence officials are now focused on attacking Syrian government troops and occasionally rival rebel factions. But the fact that these kinds of operatives are showing up in Syria indicates to American officials that Mr. Zawahri is also playing a long game — counting on easy access to Iraq and Qaeda support networks there, as well as on the United States’ reluctance to carry out drone strikes or other military operations against targets in Syria.

“A key question, however, is how using Syria as a launching pad to strike the West fits into Zawahri’s overall strategy, and if he’s soft-pedaling now, hoping to consolidate Al Qaeda’s position for the future,” said one American counterterrorism official. “Clearly, there is going to be push and pull between local operatives and Al Qaeda central on attack planning. How fast the pendulum will swing toward trying something isn’t clear right now.”

The new assessment is not likely to change American policy toward Syria any time soon, but it puts pressure on the Obama administration and its allies because it raises the possibility that Syria could become the next Afghanistan.

Top officials at the F.B.I., the National Counterterrorism Center and the Department of Homeland Security say they are working closely with European allies to track Westerners returning from Syria.

There are perhaps “a few dozen” Qaeda veterans of fighting in Afghanistan and Pakistan in Syria, two top counterterrorism officials said. “What we’ve seen is a coalescence in Syria of Al Qaeda veterans from Afghanistan and Pakistan, as well as extremists from other hot spots such as Libya and Iraq,” Matthew G. Olsen, the director of the National Counterterrorism Center, told a Senate panel in March. “From a terrorism perspective, the most concerning development is that Al Qaeda has declared Syria its most critical front.”

In his first speech as secretary of Homeland Security in February, Jeh C. Johnson put it even more bluntly. “Syria has become a matter of homeland security,” he said.

The Qaeda veterans have multiple missions and motivations, counterterrorism officials say. Like thousands of other foreign fighters, many have been drawn on their own to Syria to fight the government of President Bashar al-Assad.

Many others, like Abu Khalid al-Suri, a Syrian-born veteran of Al Qaeda, were sent by the terrorist group’s central command in Pakistan first to fight Mr. Assad, but also to begin laying the groundwork to use enclaves in Syria to launch attacks against the West, American officials said.

Mr. Suri, who is believed to have been close to Osama bin Laden and to have fought against American forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, was sent to mediate conflicts between Al Qaeda’s main affiliate in Syria, the Nusra Front, and another extremist faction, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, which Al Qaeda has disavowed. He was killed in a suicide attack in February by the rival group.

Many of the Qaeda planners and operatives from Afghanistan and Pakistan have clustered in the east and northwest sections of Syria, in territory controlled or heavily influenced by the Nusra Front, intelligence officials said.

Sanafi al-Nasr, a Saudi-born extremist who is on his country’s list of most wanted terrorists, traveled to Syria from the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region late last year and emerged as one of the Nusra Front’s top strategists. Jihadi forums reported that he was killed in fighting last week, but American counterterrorism officials said those reports could not be confirmed.

“Al Qaeda veterans could have a critical impact on recruitment and training,” said Laith Alkhouri, a senior analyst at Flashpoint Global Partners, a security consulting firm that tracks militant websites. “They would be lionized, at least within the ranks, as experienced mujahedeen.”

While these senior Qaeda envoys have been involved in the immediate fight against Syrian forces, American counterterrorism officials said they also had broader, longer-term ambitions.

Without naming Mr. Nasr, James R. Clapper Jr., the director of national intelligence, told a Senate panel in February that a “small nucleus” of Qaeda veterans from Afghanistan and Pakistan in Syria who are “separate from al-Nusra harbor designs on attacks in Europe and the homeland.”

Charles Lister, a visiting fellow at the Brookings Doha Center in Qatar, agreed, saying, “The large majority of Al Qaeda-linked commanders now in Syria are there due to the potential for Syria to be the next jihadist safe haven.”

Hassan Abu Hanieh, a Jordanian expert on Islamist movements, said that launching attacks on Western targets did not appear to be a priority for the Nusra Front now. However, the group’s ideology, or a belief that it was under direct threat, could lead it to attack the West eventually, he said.

“As soon as they get targeted, they will move the battle outside,” Mr. Hanieh said.

via Qaeda Militants Seek Syria Base, U.S. Officials Say – NYTimes.com.

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Ukraine fires defense minister who lost Crimea to Russia

Ukrainian lawmakers on Tuesday dismissed acting defense minister Igor Tenyukh over his handling of the Crimea crisis following Russia’s annexation of the Black Sea peninsula.

KIEV, UKRAINE — Ukraine fired its defense minister Tuesday, a major test of a new government trying to recover from defeat at Russia’s hands in Crimea while attempting to project enough self-confidence to win the people’s trust.

Mistakes have been and will be made, Andriy Parubiy, secretary of the National Security and Defense Council, said in an interview Tuesday, but the new government is not afraid to fix them.

“Now is the time to speak the truth to society,” he said. “This is the only way to make this government stronger.”

Extraordinary strength is required, he said, because Russian President Vladi­mir Putin wants nothing more than to take all of Ukraine. “His goal is to delegitimize the government,” Parubiy said.

The defense minister, Igor Tenyukh, who was accused of being indecisive and slow to give orders to Ukrainian military units in Crimea, submitted his resignation to parliament Tuesday. He was replaced by Gen. Mykhaylo Koval, who previously served with the border guards in Crimea and was briefly kidnapped there this month.

Many public figures avoided criticizing the military Tuesday, despite the humiliating loss of Crimea and the widely held perception that Ukrainian troops in that region were left uncertain about whether they should stay at their besieged bases or leave for the mainland.

“The army was left to the mercy of fate,” said Vitali Klitschko, the head of the Udar party, edging toward criticism when he said the government needed to become more effective.

“We are at war, and we need someone decisive, who can act quickly in extreme situations,” said Yuriy Derevyanko, an independent member of parliament. “We felt there had to be a change, but it’s better not to criticize in times like this. Everyone has to be united.”

The parliament was elected in fall 2012, in a vote considered flawed, favoring then-President Viktor Yanukovych’s Party of Regions.

“We don’t feel we have the nation’s support,” Derevyanko said. “And we have little time.”

Until Feb. 27, Parubiy was a revolutionary — a member of parliament and the Batkivshchyna party who joined the demonstrations against Yanukovych on the Maidan, as Kiev’s Independence Square is known. Parubiy organized the groups defending the square. He took office the same day that Russian-backed gunmen captured the parliament building in the Crimean capital, Simferopol. A hastily arranged referendum in the region March 16, supported by Russian propaganda and troops, resulted in Putin’s annexation of Crimea.

“When we came here,” Parubiy said, “the army was completely destroyed. We didn’t even have fuel to move troops. And our security situation remains very serious, although week by week we are able to control it more.”

Moscow had prepared an operation code-named Russian Spring, he said, mobilizing agents in southeastern Ukraine to stir up disorder, take over government buildings and then appeal to Russia for help, much as it did in Crimea. Russia has moved 100,000 well-equipped and trained troops to the Ukrainian border, he said.

“We have to be ready for anything,” Parubiy said.

Kiev has in recent days deployed more troops and police, tightening up the border and arresting provocateurs, he said. In the eastern cities of Donetsk and Kharkiv, he sad, disorderly crowds have diminished and security has improved.

Another strain on the government emerged Tuesday, at the Interior Ministry, where officials issued a warning to groups that took up arms during the anti-Yanukovych demonstrations to turn them in, or else.

“The time for disarmament is over,” First Deputy Interior Minister Volodymyr Yevdokymov said, directing his comments to Right Sector, a right-wing group, among others. He promised “tough and resolute” measures against those who keep illegal weapons.

Earlier Tuesday, a Right Sector leader died in a confrontation with police in Rivne, in western Ukraine. The circumstances remained unclear, but the man, Oleksandr Muzychko, known as Sashko Biliy, had been involved in several violent incidents recently, attacking a local prosecutor at a public meeting while clutching an automatic weapon.

Russia had declared him wanted March 7, accusing him of torturing and killing Russian soldiers in Chechnya nearly 20 years ago.

Yevdokymov said Muzychko died from a shot from his own pistol as police scuffled with him, trying to arrest him on suspicion of criminal activity. The head of Right Sector, Dmytro Yarosh, demanded the dismissal of the interior minister and the head of the Sokil special police unit involved. He called Muzychko a “brother in arms” who had been murdered.

Back on the Maidan, some protestors remain, determined to keep a watchful eye on the new government. Volodymyr Parasyuk, a 26-year-old who became a hero of the Maidan when he roused the crowd to reject a deal with Yanukovych, said the government was operating as if it was trying to burn a pile of wet debris — sparks were not flying. The defense minister needed to go, Parasyuk said.

“It was a mistake to choose him,” he said. “And there’s no room for mistakes.”

Parubiy, who was injured three times on the Maidan, said governing is turning out to be much harder than revolution.

“I thought the Maidan was tough,” he said. “This is bigger. Much, much bigger. We’re on the barricades.”

via Ukraine fires defense minister who lost Crimea to Russia – The Washington Post.

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