(CNN) - Russia’s escalation in Ukraine dominated the political talk shows Sunday morning. American politicians and Obama administration officials are calling Russian President Vladimir Putin’s deployment of troops to the Russian-friendly Crimean peninsula the latest provocation in a troubling series of events.
It’s also the latest foreign policy challenge facing President Barack Obama, whose tenure has been plagued by international crises ranging from two wars, an unruly North Korea and uprisings in the Middle East.
If you missed any of the Sunday chatter, we've got you covered:
Updated 9:15 a.m. ET, 3/3/2014
(CNN) - Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday sharply denounced Russian President Vladimir Putin's "stunning, willful" actions in Crimea, characterizing the move as an "invasion" and saying “all options are on the table” as far as a U.S. response.
"You just don't in the 21st century behave in 19th-century fashion, by invading another country on completely trumped up pretext," Kerry said, appearing on CBS's "Face the Nation."
Washington (CNN) - Members of both the House and Senate Intelligence Committees say they are extremely concerned about security surrounding next month’s Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said he wouldn’t go to the games himself – “and I don't think I would send my family,” he told CNN’s State of the Union.
(CNN) – Republicans are not baseless when they argue that al Qaeda was connected to the 2012 attack on a U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya, Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said Sunday. Those claims are rooted in intelligence gathering – not pulled out of thin air to advance a Republican storyline, he told CNN.
His comments come in response to a New York Times article that states al Qaeda had no role in the assault, countering a narrative that the Times' says has been pushed primarily by Republicans as investigations unfold.
(CNN) – A top Republican and Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee took issue Sunday with a report from The New York Times that states al Qaeda was not involved in the deadly 2012 attack against a U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya.
The Times' investigation "turned up no evidence that Al Qaeda or other international terrorist groups had any role in the assault," according to the report. "The attack was led, instead, by fighters who had benefited directly from NATO's extensive air power and logistics support during the uprising against Colonel Qaddafi."
(CNN) – Members of Congress are split on whether to rein in the National Security Agency's surveillance activities after intelligence leaks revealed the extent of the government's data-collection program.
A review of NSA surveillance practices ordered by the White House recommended changes to the program including greater judicial oversight and more public transparency in the collection of metadata. And a U.S. district judge said that the mass collection of phone records was probably unconstitutional.
Washington (CNN) - The leaders of the House and Senate Intelligence committees said Sunday that terrorists have gained ground in the past two years and that the United States is not any safer than it was at the outset of 2011.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, and Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Michigan, agreed that despite the death of Osama bin Laden and drone strikes aimed at decimating al Qaeda's leadership, President Barack Obama's administration has lost ground in the ongoing battle with global terrorism.
Washington (CNN) – Two and a half months after the U.S. backed off its threat to launch a bombing campaign against the Syrian regime, not everyone in Congress is happy with the easing of tensions.
In an interview that aired Sunday morning, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers told CNN's Candy Crowley that the the sweeping, Russian-brokered agreement prematurely closed the door to a more wide-ranging armistice between the regime and opposition forces. The agreement requires Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime to destroy its chemical weapons arsenal by mid-2014.
(CNN) - House Intelligence Chairman Mike Rogers, R-Michigan, said his committee was not informed of months of secret meetings between U.S. and Iranian officials prior to the official deal on Iran's nuclear program reached over the weekend.
"There was no formal notification, certainly that I received, and my understanding was neither did the Senate, which is concerning," Rogers told Wolf Blitzer on CNN's "The Situation Room."
(CNN) – While President Barack Obama hailed the interim agreement to slow Iran’s nuclear program as an “important first step,” some lawmakers were skeptical about the deal on Sunday, including members of Obama’s own party.
Both Republicans and Democrats were cautious about the agreement’s provision to loosen sanctions against Iran. A few called for another round of sanctions to be passed immediately, while more urged a backup plan that would impose new sanctions in six months if Iran fails to hold up its end of the deal.