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For tonight's election coverage, see: http://politics.theatlantic.com/


The Wizards get the number one pick in the NBA draft. 

In Washington, the late-in-the-day release of a damning Senate Select Committee on Intelligence report into the Christmas Day bombing intelligence failures is getting overlooked for the moment, but not for long. The report lists 14 failure points. An intelligence official calls them the "14 ways in which the plot could have been stopped, to varying degrees."

The authors clearly intended to send a message of disapproval to the National Counterterrorism Center and the Director of National Intelligence.  The DNI's office put out a response, and a spokesperson pointed to the part where it says that since the incident, "The DNI clarified roles and responsibilities among the IC's counterterrorism functions, ensuring that any stream of threat reporting receives follow through to its conclusion." And two: the DNI established a dedicated "analytic element of NCTC" to "thoroughly and exhaustively pursue terrorist threat leads." That is, finally, the NCTC sees its mission as to provide real-time tactical intelligence about threats to the country. Note: the classified version of the report was distributed two months ago. And the SSCI is satisfied that the NCTC and the DNI and other agencies are implementing the recommendation. A DNI official: "Today's threat is different (individualized) and agencies still aren't sharing info. Add two together and it's more difficult to uncover singular plot. Good news is significant changes are taking place to address both issues."

Meanwhile, CIA Director Leon Panetta is happily out of the country. Supposedly, he is in Pakistan, although I suspect he might take a side trip to other secret CIA bases in the region. He's already visited 35 CIA field facilities across the world and is using this trip to rebuild liaison relationships between intelligence agencies that frayed during the Bush-Cheney era.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton leaves Friday for Japan, Korea and China.

The chairman of the Oregon Republican Party does not seem to appreciate that there's a big election today. He sent a blistering letter to the Republican National Committee accusing fellow RNC members, by name, of leaking bad things about chairman Michael Steele to the press. "Solomon Yue has been stirring dissension within the RNC since day 1," writes chairman Bob Teirnan. Yue's "trash talking" is "undermining" Steele and his staff. He urges RNC members to call Yue and tell him to stop leaking. Some background: Yue, also from Oregon, is an opponent of Steele's, and an ally of Steele's main factional opponent, Indiana Republican James Bopp, who heads the party's conservative steering committee. Tiernan clearly has some issues with Yue and has decided to take their spat national, which will draw even more bad press to the RNC. More unnecessary distractions for the RNC at a time when they don't need any more. Read his letter here: rncletter.pdf

More than 2,000 gay people have gotten married in Iowa. http://dmreg.com/G7txwr

From the United Nations, the text of relevant P5+1 sanctions against Iran: WARNING: LONG READ AHEAD:

1.Calls upon all States to inspect, in accordance with their national authorities and legislation and consistent with international law, in particular the law of the sea and relevant international civil aviation agreements, all cargo to and from Iran, in their territory, including seaports and airports, if the State concerned has information that provides reasonable grounds  to believe the cargo contains items the supply, sale, transfer, or export of which is prohibited by paragraphs 3, 4 or 7 of resolution 1737 (2006), paragraph 5 of resolution 1747 (2007), paragraph 8 of resolution 1803 (2008) or paragraphs 8 or 9 of this resolution, for the purpose of ensuring strict implementation of those provisions; 

2.Notes that States, consistent with international law, in particular the law of the sea, may request inspections of vessels on the high seas with the consent of the flag State, and calls upon all States to cooperate in such inspections if there is information that provides reasonable grounds to believe the vessel is carrying items the supply, sale, transfer, or export of which is prohibited by paragraphs 3, 4 or 7 of resolution 1737 (2006), paragraph 5 of resolution 1747 (2007), paragraph 8 of resolution 1803 (2008) or paragraphs 8 or 9 of this resolution, for the purpose of ensuring strict implementation of those provisions, and requires States to report to the Committee the results of such inspections and whether or not cooperation was provided; 

3.Decides to authorize all States to, and that all States shall, seize and dispose of (such as through destruction, rendering inoperable, storage or transferring to a State other than the originating or destination States for disposal) items the supply, sale, transfer, or export of which is prohibited by paragraphs 3, 4 or 7 of resolution 1737 (2006), paragraph 5 of resolution 1747 (2007), paragraph 8 of resolution 1803 (2008) or paragraphs 8 or 9 of this resolution that are identified in inspections pursuant to paragraphs 14 or 15 of this resolution, in a manner that is not inconsistent with their obligations under applicable Security Council resolutions, including resolution 1540 (2004), as well as any obligations of parties to the NPT, and decides further that all States shall cooperate in such efforts; 

4.Requires any State, when it undertakes an inspection pursuant to paragraph 14 or 15 above to submit to the Committee within five working days a written report containing, in particular, explanation of the grounds for the inspections, as well as relevant details to the Committee on the inspection, seizure and disposal, and relevant details of the transfer, including a description of the items, their origin and intended destination; 

5.Decides that all States shall prohibit the provision by their nationals or from their territory of bunkering services, such as provision of fuel or supplies, or other servicing of vessels, to Iranian-owned or contracted vessels if they have information that provides reasonable grounds to believe they are carrying items the supply, sale, transfer, or export of which is prohibited by paragraphs 3, 4 or 7, of resolution 1737 (2006), paragraph 5 of resolution 1747 (2007), paragraph 8 of resolution 1803 (2008) or paragraphs 8 or 9 of this resolution, unless provision of such services is necessary for humanitarian purposes or until such time as the cargo has been inspected, and seized and disposed of if necessary, and underlines that this paragraph is not intended to affect legal economic activities; 

6.Decides that the measures specified in paragraphs 12, 13, 14 and 15 of resolution 1737 (2006) shall also apply to the entities of the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) as specified in Annex III and to any person or entity acting on their behalf or at their direction, and to entities owned or controlled by them or determined by the Councilor the Committee to have assisted them in evading the sanctions of, or in violating the provisions of, resolutions 1737 (2006), 1747 (2007), 1803 (2008) or this resolution; 

7.Requests all Member States to communicate to the Committee any information available on transfers or activity by Iran Air's cargo division or vessels owned or operated by the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) to other companies that may have been undertaken in order to evade the sanctions of, or in violation of the provisions of, resolutions 1737 (2006), 1747 (2007), 1803 (2008) or this resolution, including renaming or re-registering of aircraft, vessels or ships, and requests the Committee to make that information widely available;

F) Financial/Commercial Measures 

8.Calls upon all States ... to prevent the provision of financial services, including insurance or re-insurance, or the transfer to, through, or from their territory, or to or by their nationals or entities organized under their laws (including branches abroad), or persons or financial institutions in their territory, of any financial or other assets or resources if they have information that provides reasonable grounds to believe that such services, assets or resources could contribute to Iran's proliferation sensitive nuclear activities, or the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems, including by freezing any financial or other assets or resources on their territories or that hereafter come within their territories, or that are subject to their jurisdiction or that hereafter become subject to their jurisdiction, that are related to such programs or activities and applying enhanced monitoring to prevent all such transactions in accordance with their national authorities and legislation;

9.Decides that all States shall require their nationals, persons subject to their jurisdiction and firms incorporated on their territory or subject to their jurisdiction to exercise vigilance when doing business with entities incorporated in Iran or subject to Iran's jurisdiction, including those of the IRGC and Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL), and any individuals or entities acting on their behalf or at their direction, and entities owned or controlled by them, including through illicit means...

G) Banking 

10.Calls upon States to take appropriate measures that prohibit in their territories the opening of new branches, subsidiaries, or representative offices of Iranian banks, and also that prohibit Iranian banks from establishing new joint ventures, taking an ownership interest in or establishing or maintaining correspondent relationships with banks in their jurisdiction to prevent the provision of financial services if they have information that provides reasonable grounds to believe that these activities could contribute to Iran's proliferation sensitive nuclear activities or the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems; 

11.Calls upon States to take appropriate measures that prohibit financial institutions within their territories or under their jurisdiction from opening representative offices or subsidiaries or banking accounts in Iran if they have information that provides reasonable grounds to believe that such financial services could contribute to Iran's proliferation sensitive nuclear activities or the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems; 

H) Sanctions Enforcement 

13.Directs the Committee to respond effectively to violations of the measures decided in resolutions 1737 (2006), 1747 (2007), 1803 (2008) and this resolution, and recalls that the Committee may designate individuals and entities who have assisted designated persons or entities in evading sanctions of, or in violating the provisions of, these resolutions; 
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Marc Ambinder is an Atlantic contributing editor. He is also a senior contributor at Defense One, a contributing editor at GQ, and a regular contributor at The Week.

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