Behind the Lines for Monday, March 26, 2012 — 3 P.M.
By David C. Morrison, Special to Congressional Quarterly
Do Nothing Congress: Turf wars and budget gridlock stall DHS bills even as lawmakers continue soliciting testimony from officials who implement them . . . Turn that frown upside down, little Homie: "If the homeland's security were dependent on employee morale, we'd be in big trouble" . . . Today's access of atomic angst: "There are no precise figures for how much high-enriched uranium or plutonium is missing." These and other stories lead today's homeland security coverage.
“Congressional turf wars and budget gridlock have put homeland security bills on the back burner even as lawmakers continue to seek testimony from the officials who implement them,” Main Justice’s Jeffrey Benzing surveys. “The DHS budget reveals certain failures in U.S. border security efforts: The Border Patrol could use more surveillance technology [and] the Coast Guard is in serious need of new vessels,” James Jay Carafano diagnoses for Sitrep. “If the homeland’s security were dependent on employee morale, we’d be in big trouble,” The Washington Post’s Joe Davidson leads.
Over there: Washington has no immediate response to a Pakistani parliamentary commission’s call for the United States to end drone strikes on its territory and formally apologize for killing 24 soldiers in November, The FirstPost reports. In the wake of terrorist outrages, Turkey’s P.M. is unlikely to approve a prosecutor’s bid to interrogate the nation’s top spy in a probe into an alleged urban wing of the PKK terror group, World Bulletin relays. France’s politicking prez proposes a sweeping new law jailing those who visit extremist web sites, RT reports — while The Wall Street Journal has French officials still “piecing together how Mohamed Merah became the alleged homegrown terrorist behind the most violent attacks on French soil in almost two decades,” and GlobalPost sees a French teacher facing disciplinary action after asking students to observe a minute of silence for Merah. Investigators, meantime, have found no evidence linking the shooter to al Qaeda or any other terrorist outfit, AP adds.