This Week in War. A Friday round-up of what happened and what’s been written in the world of war and military/security affairs this week. It’s a mix of news reports, policy briefs, blog posts and longform journalism.
Journalist Matthieu Aikins has the cover story for GQ this month, and it’s a very well-done account of the siege of the US Embassy in Kabul last September.
Graft is a major obstacle to progress in the Afghan transitional process.
President Karzai has backed newly-released, strict guidelines for Afghan women, decided upon by the clerics of the Ulema Council, in what is seen as a big step back for gender equality in the Afghan transition.
Rifts and rivalry have been exposed within Tehreek e-Taliban (TTP), the Pakistani branch of the militant group. Deputy commander Maulvi Faqir Muhammad was fired, sparking anger and talk of a splinter group.
China plans to increase its defense spending by 11.2% in the coming year. In 2012, Asia is expected to overtake Europe in its military spending, led by China.
Humanitarian aid finally reached the Baba Amro district of Homs. 
Syria’s deputy oil minister, Abdo Hussameldin, has become the highest ranking official to defect from Bashar al-Assad’s government to the rebels, doing so in a YouTube video this week.
The intervention debate within the US has ramped up considerably as the administration inches toward action.
New York Times photographer Tyler Hicks writes movingly about Anthony Shadid’s last days.
French photographer William Daniels writes for TIME about the last days with Marie Colvin and Rémi Ochlik, and his own escape from Homs.
War is erupting in the south of Yemen between government forces and a group known as Ansar al-Shar’ia.
The “Kony 2012” campaign, which I think we can agree makes it sound like Invisible Children is trying to get Joseph Kony elected president, has had some serious and important rebuttals and takedowns: The Atlantic, The Atlantic, UN Dispatch, Visible Children.
A group of female veterans have released a statement calling on the Pentagon to drop Rush Limbaugh’s show from Armed Forces Radio, and more than 18,000 people have signed a petition in a similar vein.
A new lawsuit has been filed over negligence and lack of action to prevent and prosecute military rape against Panetta, Gates and Rumsfeld by eight Marines and Navy officers. Their stories are horrific and demonstrate the shameful treatment of women and rape victims inside the system. A New York Times editorial yesterday called the rate of rape in the US military “intolerably high.”
The Director of National Intelligence has released data on Guantanamo Bay recidivism and the numbers on re-engagement of former detainees. Lawfare points to a particularly important chart.
Assessing the key quotes and arguments in Eric Holder’s speech defending targeted killing.
This Week in Wannabe Jihadists: A Brooklyn-born man, 24-year-old Betim Kaziu was sentenced to 27 years in prison for his attempt to join Al Qaeda or the Taliban. A former Army soldier from Maryland, Craig Benedict Baxam, is going on trial for trying to join Al-Shabaab.
Al Qaeda’s English language outreach programs have faltered seriously.
A congressional report (prepared for the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission by Northrup Grumman) says that China has progressed to testing their cyberattack capabilities. [pdf]
After talks were set to resume with Iran, a new report is circulating that satellite imagery shows a hidden Iranian nuclear plant.
Photo: Feb 24. A boy walks down a shelled out street in Baba Amro, Homs. The building on the right is where photographer William Daniels stayed with other journalists, including Marie Colvin and Rémi Ochlik. William Daniels - Panos for TIME.

This Week in War. A Friday round-up of what happened and what’s been written in the world of war and military/security affairs this week. It’s a mix of news reports, policy briefs, blog posts and longform journalism.

Photo: Feb 24. A boy walks down a shelled out street in Baba Amro, Homs. The building on the right is where photographer William Daniels stayed with other journalists, including Marie Colvin and Rémi Ochlik. William Daniels - Panos for TIME.

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    Food for thought: why is rape an issue for almost every military in the world? Even within the USA where supposedly...
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