AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Ben Watson

News Editor Ben Watson is news editor for Defense One. He previously worked for NPR's “All Things Considered” and “Here and Now” in Washington, D.C. Watson served for five years in the U.S. Army, where he was an award-winning combat cameraman and media advisor for southern Afghanistan's special operations command during the 2010-11 surge.
Results 1031-1040 of 1131

The D Brief: Landmark shift in US-Cuba relations; The spies in the middle; Rubio rising; A view from inside Langley; What Hollywood gets wrong about North Korea; And a bit more.

December 18, 2014 Cuba?? Sure, why not. President Obama pulled off a stunner on Wednesday announcing the U.S. would restore diplomatic relations with Cuba after a 50-year American embargo failed to oust Fidel Castro and his regime, or do much else. The deal was 18 months in the making; a complicated mashup involving...

The D Brief: Rajiv Shah to step down; Pakistan unites in outrage; A Yemen school attack; A Navy pilot in the ISS; The flak jacket of the future; And a bit more.

December 17, 2014 Pakistan’s fragmented political factions are uniting (temporarily) while the government is cautiously lifts its ban on the death penalty for terrorists. This as the nation begins three days of mourning over the deaths of at least 132 children at Peshawar’s Army Public School Tuesday. Qasim Nauman, Safdar Dawar and Saeed...

The D Brief: A major attack in Pakistan; A giant drone-hunting blimp; What kind of a general are you?; Behind the music on the CIA briefing; And a bit more.

December 16, 2014 While you were sleeping: More than 100 people were killed, mostly children, and perhaps as many were wounded in Pakistan in a Taliban attack at a school in what was described as “one of the bloodiest attacks in recent years.” It’s a reflection of the Taliban’s enduring capability to stage...

The D Brief: Derek Chollet to German Marshall; Montel Williams: Coburn jumped the shark; Stewart to DIA; A skinny puppy sues DoD; Stavridis: arm the Ukrainians; And a bit more.

December 15, 2014 Sydney remains in lockdown mode in what appears to be a politically motivated attack at a chocolate shop – raising terrorist fears. Reuters just this morning: “Australian police locked down the center of the country's biggest city on Monday after an armed man walked into a busy downtown Sydney cafe,...

The D Brief: House hands $554b to DoD; Senate weighs in on “boots on the ground”; Brennan rebuts; Yoda’s office survives another day; A mod for the Navy’s LCS; And a bit more.

December 12, 2014 The sausage making is never pertty: Amid shouting and arm-twisting, the House narrowly passed a $1 trillion government-wide spending bill that keeps the government running and includes more for the Pentagon. Defense News’ John Bennett: “…For the Defense Department, the legislation would provide $554.1 billion for fiscal 2015, just smaller...

The D Brief: Your brain, on torture; Carl Levin, disappointed; Watch a midair refueling; Strongman Rangel to head Lockheed in DC; And a bit more.

December 11, 2014 The CIA first planned jails that abided by U.S. standards before it “pivoted” and went for harsh interrogations. As the fallout of the Senate report on torture continues – and as reporters read the massive document released yesterday – we learn more about the torture program at the hands of...

7 Ways the $104 Billion Reconstruction Effort in Afghanistan Could Fail

December 10, 2014 The watchdog agency for the $104 billion that the U.S. has pledged for the reconstruction effort in Afghanistan says rampant corruption could derail rebuilding the nation after 13 years of war. On Wednesday, Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction John Sopko released seven “potent threats” as U.S. and NATO forces...

The D Brief: Did torture get bin Laden or not? Kerry: expand the fight against IS; Mike Flynn to Dartmouth; Hunter to Obama: review raids; Dempsey takes on Bill the Goat; And a bit more.

December 10, 2014 Did torture help find bin Laden or not? The much anticipated, much delayed Senate Intelligence Committee on torture raises a number of questions, but one that is central is the role torture played or didn’t play in the successful raid that killed Osama bin Laden. The NYT’s Charlie Savage and...

The D Brief: Hagel is in Baghdad; About 1,500 intl. troops to Iraq; The layers of Layer Cake; What almost scrubbed the Iraq trip; What concerns Joe Anderson?; And a bit more.

December 9, 2014 Chuck Hagel is in Baghdad. Defense Secretary Hagel arrived at the Baghdad International airport just a few hours ago after landing in a C-17 military jet he took from Kuwait City earlier this morning. The Secretary’s visit to Baghdad is the first Pentagon chief to return here since 2011 and...

The D Brief: The Post-Karzai government seeks a slower drawdown in Afg; What will Ash do on cyber?; Bush 43 challenges torture report; The Navy won’t let go of a recruiting lead; And a bit more.

December 8, 2014 The new Afghan government, which has been highly praised by the U.S. government, wants a solid: President Ghani would like President Barack Obama to slow down the drawdown of U.S. troops. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, the brass, and the Obama Administration have given high praise to the new government in...