Morning Report: July 20, 2004

Former Clinton aide probed for classified mishandling. The national security advisor for the Clinton administration, Samuel "Sandy" Berger, is under federal criminal investigation for allegedly removing classified documents from a secure area. During his preparation for the 9/11 commission hearings, Berger is said to have taken documents and notes from the National Security Archives without proper authorization. Berger states that he took the documents "inadvertently". (CNN)

Taheri: Iran to be 2004 election issue. In a recent article, Amir Taheri notes the importance of Iran in the upcoming US presidential campaign. Taheri notes that the IRI's nuclar ambitions are causing growing concern "even in European circles" and that a UN resolution on Iran could be on the table as early as this fall. He faults the Bush administration for its lack of a clear Iran policy - partly due to internal divisions in Washington. (See my May 6 post "State vs. Defense".) Kerry, on the other hand, unequivocally espouses an appeasement policy. Tahei concludes that he hopes the upcoming election will force Bush to clarify his policy on Iran (perhaps taking a harder line to distinguish himself from Kerry) while persuading Kerry to take a more "realistic" approach. (Benador)