724: Nice Fabric

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

2h 43m
May 24th, 2015
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Executive Producers: Sir Bradley Charles, Sir Shane Kirk-Devops named Ben, Craig Hicks, Christopher Dolan, Joseph Gilbert

Associate Executive Producers: Timnonymous, Sir Lukas Teijema

Cover Artist: Sarcasquatch

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Woodstock
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Flooding in Texas, Blanco river 40 ft, 7 above old record ever People on rooftops last night
iPad ordering @ JFK Delta is shit idea
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Theodore Kasczinski "Industrial Society and Its Future"
Smith Mundt Act - A reminder that you are living in a Smith-Mudt Act repealed media landscape
NDAA and Overturning of Smith-Mundt Act
The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (NDAA) allows for materials produced by the State Department and the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) to be released within U.S. borders and strikes down a long-time ban on the dissemination of such material in the country.[14][15][16]
Propaganda in the United States - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sun, 21 Sep 2014 15:00
Propaganda in the United States is propaganda spread by government and media entities within the United States. Propaganda is information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to influence opinions. Propaganda is not only in advertising; it is also in radio, newspaper, posters, books, and anything else that might be sent out to the widespread public.
Domestic[edit]World War I[edit]The first large-scale use of propaganda by the U.S. government came during World War I. The government enlisted the help of citizens and children to help promote war bonds and stamps to help stimulate the economy. To keep the prices of war supplies down, the U.S. government produced posters that encouraged people to reduce waste and grow their own vegetables in "victory gardens." The public skepticism that was generated by the heavy-handed tactics of the Committee on Public Information would lead the postwar government to officially abandon the use of propaganda.[1]
World War II[edit]During World War II the U.S. officially had no propaganda, but the Roosevelt government used means to circumvent this official line. One such propaganda tool was the publicly owned but government funded Writers' War Board (WWB). The activities of the WWB were so extensive that it has been called the "greatest propaganda machine in history".[1]Why We Fight is a famous series of US government propaganda films made to justify US involvement in World War II.
In 1944 (lasting until 1948) prominent US policy makers launched a domestic propaganda campaign aimed at convincing the U.S. public to agree to a harsh peace for the German people, for example by removing the common view of the German people and the Nazi party as separate entities.[2] The core in this campaign was the Writers' War Board which was closely associated with the Roosevelt administration.[2]
Another means was the United States Office of War Information that Roosevelt established in June 1942, whose mandate was to promote understanding of the war policies under the director Elmer Davies. It dealt with posters, press, movies, exhibitions, and produced often slanted material conforming to US wartime purposes. Other large and influential non-governmental organizations during the war and immediate post war period were the Society for the Prevention of World War III and the Council on Books in Wartime.
Cold War[edit]During the Cold War, the U.S. government produced vast amounts of propaganda against communism and the Soviet bloc. Much of this propaganda was directed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation under J. Edgar Hoover, who himself wrote the anti-communist tract Masters of Deceit. The FBI's COINTELPRO arm solicited journalists to produce fake news items discrediting communists and affiliated groups, such as H. Bruce Franklin and the Venceremos Organization.
War on Drugs[edit]The National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign, originally established by the National Narcotics Leadership Act of 1988,[3][4] but now conducted by the Office of National Drug Control Policy under the Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998,[5] is a domestic propaganda campaign designed to "influence the attitudes of the public and the news media with respect to drug abuse" and for "reducing and preventing drug abuse among young people in the United States".[6][7] The Media Campaign cooperates with the Partnership for a Drug-Free America and other government and non-government organizations.[8]
Iraq War[edit]In early 2002, the U.S. Department of Defense launched an information operation, colloquially referred to as the Pentagon military analyst program.[9] The goal of the operation is "to spread the administrations's talking points on Iraq by briefing ... retired commanders for network and cable television appearances," where they have been presented as independent analysts.[10] On 22 May 2008, after this program was revealed in the New York Times, the House passed an amendment that would make permanent a domestic propaganda ban that until now has been enacted annually in the military authorization bill.[11]
The Shared values initiative was a public relations campaign that was intended to sell a "new" America to Muslims around the world by showing that American Muslims were living happily and freely, without persecution, in post-9/11 America.[12] Funded by the United States Department of State, the campaign created a public relations front group known as Council of American Muslims for Understanding (CAMU). The campaign was divided in phases; the first of which consisted of five mini-documentaries for television, radio, and print with shared values messages for key Muslim countries.[13]
NDAA and Overturning of Smith-Mundt Act[edit]The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (NDAA) allows for materials produced by the State Department and the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) to be released within U.S. borders and strikes down a long-time ban on the dissemination of such material in the country.[14][15][16]
Ad Council[edit]The Ad Council, an American non-profit organization that distributes public service announcements on behalf of various private and federal government agency sponsors, has been labeled as "little more than a domestic propaganda arm of the federal government" given the Ad Council's historically close collaboration with the President of the United States and the federal government.[17]
International[edit]Through several international broadcasting operations, the US disseminates American cultural information, official positions on international affairs, and daily summaries of international news. These operations fall under the International Broadcasting Bureau, the successor of the United States Information Agency, established in 1953. IBB's operations include Voice of America, Radio Liberty, Alhurra and other programs. They broadcast mainly to countries where the United States finds that information about international events is limited, either due to poor infrastructure or government censorship. The Smith-Mundt Act prohibits the Voice of America from disseminating information to US citizens that was produced specifically for a foreign audience.
During the Cold War the US ran covert propaganda campaigns in countries that appeared likely to become Soviet satellites, such as Italy, Afghanistan, and Chile.
Recently The Pentagon announced the creation of a new unit aimed at spreading propaganda about supposedly "inaccurate" stories being spread about the Iraq War. These "inaccuracies" have been blamed on the enemy trying to decrease support for the war. Donald Rumsfeld has been quoted as saying these stories are something that keeps him up at night.[18]
Psychological operations[edit]The US military defines psychological operations, or PSYOP, as:
planned operations to convey selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence the emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of foreign governments, organizations, groups, and individuals.[19]
The Smith-Mundt Act, adopted in 1948, explicitly forbids information and psychological operations aimed at the US public.[20][21][22] Nevertheless, the current easy access to news and information from around the globe, makes it difficult to guarantee PSYOP programs do not reach the US public. Or, in the words of Army Col. James A. Treadwell, who commanded the U.S. military psyops unit in Iraq in 2003, in the Washington Post:
There's always going to be a certain amount of bleed-over with the global information environment.[23]
Agence France Presse reported on U.S. propaganda campaigns that:
The Pentagon acknowledged in a newly declassified document that the US public is increasingly exposed to propaganda disseminated overseas in psychological operations.[24]
Former US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld approved the document referred to, which is titled "Information Operations Roadmap." [22][24] The document acknowledges the Smith-Mundt Act, but fails to offer any way of limiting the effect PSYOP programs have on domestic audiences.[20][21][25]
Several incidents in 2003 were documented by Sam Gardiner, a retired Air Force colonel, which he saw as information-warfare campaigns that were intended for "foreign populations and the American public." Truth from These Podia,[26] as the treatise was called, reported that the way the Iraq war was fought resembled a political campaign, stressing the message instead of the truth.[22]
See also[edit]References[edit]^ abThomas Howell, The Writers' War Board: U.S. Domestic Propaganda in World War II, Historian, Volume 59 Issue 4, Pages 795 - 813^ abSteven Casey, (2005), The Campaign to sell a harsh peace for Germany to the American public, 1944 - 1948, [online]. London: LSE Research Online. [Available online at http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/archive/00000736] Originally published in History, 90 (297). pp. 62-92 (2005) Blackwell Publishing^National Narcotics Leadership Act of 1988 of the Anti''Drug Abuse Act of 1988, Pub.L. 100''724, 102 Stat. 4181, enacted November 18, 1988^Gamboa, Anthony H. (January 4, 2005), B-303495, Office of National Drug Control Policy '-- Video News Release, Government Accountability Office, footnote 6, page 3 ^Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998 (Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999), Pub.L. 105''277, 112 Stat. 268, enacted October 21, 1998^Gamboa, Anthony H. (January 4, 2005), B-303495, Office of National Drug Control Policy '-- Video News Release, Government Accountability Office, pp. 9''10 ^Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998 of the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999, Pub.L. 105''277, 112 Stat. 268, enacted October 21, 1998^Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act of 2006, Pub.L. 109''469, 120 Stat. 3501, enacted December 29, 2006, codified at 21 U.S.C. § 1724^Barstow, David (2008-04-20). "Message Machine: Behind Analysts, the Pentagon's Hidden Hand". New York Times. ^Sessions, David (2008-04-20). "Onward T.V. Soldiers: The New York Times exposes a multi-armed Pentagon message machine". Slate. ^Barstow, David (2008-05-24). "2 Inquiries Set on Pentagon Publicity Effort". New York Times. ^Rampton, Sheldon (October 17, 2007). "Shared Values Revisited". Center for Media and Democracy. ^"U.S. Reaches Out to Muslim World with Shared Values Initiative". America.gov. January 16, 2003.
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PR
No Agenda Racing
Sir Andrew Gardner: I'm racing this weekend at Summit Point, WV. Thursday snuck up on me and I missed donating, please send karma if you get this.
Producer EU meet-up note
Hey Adam,
I'm traveling in Holland and Germany this Summer and I was hoping you could put me in contact with some producers there. It's my first time outside the US.
I'll be landing at Schiphol Wednesday May 27th. I'll start out in Amsterdam, but I'd like to check out Rotterdam, The Hague, Haarlem.
In Germany, the list of cities I'm visiting:
Trier
Frankfurt
Cologne
Stuttgart
Heidelberg
Munich
(I'd love to visit Neuschwanstein, too)
There's no hard itinerary other than my flight leaving Munich July 15th. I'd love a place to stay, but any kind of guidance or company would be valued. A wingman would kick ass.
Thank you so much, and thank you for the show.
Steven Bussinger
sbussi@live.com
Open Carry
Texas passes OC law in senate, 45 states have some form of open carry laws already on the books!
Agenda 21
Bill Nye Constitution BULLCRAP!
I am sure other No Agenda listeners mentioned it, or you looked it up but section 1 article 8 of the constitution is about intellectual property, not a general proscription for the government to fund or promote SCIENCE!™
" To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;"
Ryan Vann
EuroLand
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#Eurovision newbies should be aware that scoring equation is 20% song quality, 40% geographic solidarity and 40% scared of Russia.
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Eurovision: A stage for geopolitical conflicts? - Austria's news in English
Thu, 21 May 2015 12:14
AFP/The Local | 21 May 2015, 07:52
Behind the kitsch, glitz and smoke machines of the Eurovision Song Contest - hosted on Saturday by Vienna - hide more serious international geopolitical tensions, says the creator of the world's first university course on the popular music competition.
Historian Dean Vuletic leads a EU-funded research project at the University of Vienna, focusing on the annual Eurovision sing-off as a vehicle for diplomacy and socio-political messages.
"It is an effective tool to approach history because it prompts people to talk about political issues through cultural references," Vuletic told AFP in an interview.
For instance, it served as "a great mirror" for the complex relationship between the West and Soviet states during the Cold War.
Communist Yugoslavia's entry into Eurovision in 1961 -- barely six years after the contest was first launched -- helped demonstrate that it was the Eastern European nation most open to Western cultural influences back then, Vuletic argued.
"It was the only communist country that participated in it throughout the Cold War," he said.
Meanwhile, Austria sent a "highly symbolic message" in 1968, when Soviet tanks crushed the Prague Spring, by sending Czech singer Karel Gott as its representative.
"From the Austrian perspective, it was an expression of support for the reforms that were taking place and desire for closer ties with its eastern neighbours," said Vuletic.
The following year Austria boycotted the contest because it was being held in Spain, then under the dictatorship of Francisco Franco.
After the fall of the Iron Curtain, Eurovision gained even greater political significance as countries of the former Eastern bloc began joining the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), which organises the song contest.
Accession was easy because the group had no political or economic entry requirements -- all a country needed was a public television service.
"From the early 1990s, it was really the first Western European organisation that former communist nations could enter," said Vuletic.
"They used it as a forum, in which they could express and affirm their aspirations for European integration."
Once these countries became members of NATO and eventually the European Union, however, Eurovision lost its lustre: "You can see that many of them stopped putting so much effort into the contest after their political aims were accomplished."
A scene from the dress rehearsal for the second Semi Final. Photo: Thomas Hanses (EBU)
'We Don't Wanna Put In'
In more recent times, tensions between the West and Russia have flared up again, notably over Ukraine, and this too is being played out on the Eurovision stage.
At the 2014 competition in Copenhagen, just two months after Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimean peninsula in March, Russia's Tolmachevy Sisters were booed by the audience in the final.
In contrast, Austria's bearded drag queen Conchita Wurst was wildly cheered and went on to win the contest.
Conchita "profited from the tensions between Russia and the West by presenting herself as a symbol of Western liberal values" -- especially in light of Russia's strong anti-gay stance -- said Vuletic.
Russia appears to fare better this year with singer Polina Gagarina, whose peace song "A Million Voices" was voted into Saturday's final in Vienna to loud applause.
While the EBU welcomes entries dealing with positive political themes, overtly critical or nationalist content is strictly forbidden.
Lyrics often tread a fine line here, such as the 2015 entry by finalist Armenia.
Many perceived the song, originally called "Don't Deny," to be a direct reference to the 100th anniversary of the mass killing of Armenians by Ottoman forces, which Turkey refuses to recognise as genocide.
In the end, Armenia changed the title to "Face the Shadow" to remove any suggestion of political intent.
Other nations have tried to find more creative ways of getting around the "no politics" rule.
Georgia attempted to join the 2009 edition in Moscow with the song "We Don't Wanna Put In". The EBU rejected the entry on the basis it was an obvious wordplay on Putin.
For Vuletic, the ideal Eurovision song carries a "strong universal message at the right historical time".
"Nationalist messages don't do well because they're not something that other Europeans can necessarily relate to."
By Nina Lamparski/AFP
We will be reporting live and blogging from the Eurovision Song Contest final on Saturday - check in at 8.50pm!
Eurovision installs 'anti-booing' technology ahead of Russian performance
Thu, 21 May 2015 12:10
What's This?
Organisers of this year's Eurovision Song Contest are trialling 'anti-booing' technology after Russia's entry was heckled last year.Image: Julian Stratenschulte/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images/Associated Press
By Tim ChesterUK2015-05-21 11:44:19 UTC
Organisers of the Eurovision Song Contest have installed special 'anti-booing' technology at this year's event, to muffle any potential dissent during Russia's performance.
In an effort to avoid a repeat of last year, when the country's Tolmachevy Sisters were booed during their performance of "Shine" in protest at Russia's actions in Ukraine and stance on gay rights, the production team have installed "sound reducers" to mask audience noise, the Moscow Timesreports.
Polina Gagarina is representing the country in the final in Vienna on Saturday (May 23) with "A Million Voices."
"It was very embarrassing for us last year when this happened, as it is not in the spirit of the contest," Jarmo Siim, Communications Coordinator for Eurovision told the paper. "We are here to build bridges, as the motto [of the contest] says."
While few technical details of the anti-booing technology has been revealed, Siim said there were several options to reduce unwelcome sounds from the crowd. However, he said that "Plan A is to use regular audience sound."
Gagarina herself insisted she wouldn't hear any booing either way, thanks to her earphones. "Normally I just have one earphone in when I perform so that I can hear the audience and feel the energy of the arena," she said, adding that Eurovision requires artists to use two.
She recently posted a video of herself with last year's winner, Austria's Conchita Wurst.
This year, the Eurovision Song Contest will be presented for deaf people in the International Sign Language for the first time.
The 60th edition of the contest kicks off in Vienna at 8 p.m. local time (CEST).
Have something to add to this story? Share it in the comments.
Topics: Entertainment, eurovision, Eurovision Song Contest, gagarina, Music, russia, Television, vienna
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Secret Bank of England taskforce investigates financial fallout of Brexit | Business | The Guardian
Fri, 22 May 2015 21:27
A secret Bank of England taskforce is researching the possible financial shocks of the UK's exit from the EU. Photograph: Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty Images
Bank of England officials are secretly researching the financial shocks that could hit Britain if there is a vote to leave the European Union in the forthcoming referendum.
The Bank blew its cover on Friday when it accidentally emailed details of the project '' including how the bank intended to fend off any inquiries about its work '' direct to the Guardian.
According to the confidential email, the press and most staff in Threadneedle Street must be kept in the dark about the work underway, which has been dubbed Project Bookend.
It spells out that if anyone asks about the project, the taskforce must say the investigation has nothing to do with the referendum, saying only that staff are involved in examining ''a broad range of European economic issues'' that concern the Bank.
The revelation is likely to embarrass the bank governor, Mark Carney, who has overhauled the central bank's operations and promised greater transparency over its decision-making.
MPs are now likely to ask whether the Bank intended to inform parliament that a major review of Britain's prospects outside the EU was being undertaken by the institution that acts as the UK's main financial regulator. Carney is also likely to come under pressure within the Bank to reveal whether there are other undercover projects underway.
Officials are likely to have kept the project under wraps to avoid entering the highly charged debate around the EU referendum, which has jumped to the top of the political agenda since the Conservatives secured an overall majority. Many business leaders and pro-EU campaigners have warned that ''Brexit'' would hit British exports and damage the standing of the City of London.
The report could prove incendiary, but without a public notice advertising the Bank's research project, parliament and the public would be unable to demand its publication.
The email indicates that a small group of senior staff are to examine the effect of a Brexit under the authority of Sir Jon Cunliffe, who as deputy director for financial stability has responsibility for monitoring the risk of another market crash.
Cunliffe also sits on the board of the City regulator, the Prudential Regulatory Authority.
James Talbot, the head of the monetary assessment and strategy division, is involved in Project Bookend, drawing on his past work as an adviser on European economic policy.
The email, from Cunliffe's private secretary to four senior executives, was written on 21 May and forwarded by mistake to a Guardian editor by the Bank's head of press, Jeremy Harrison.
It says: ''Jon's proposal, which he has asked me to highlight to you, is that no email is sent to James's team or more broadly around the Bank about the project.''
It continues: ''James can tell his team that he is working on a short-term project on European economics in International [division] which will last a couple of months. This will be in-depth work on a broad range of European economic issues. Ideally he would then say no more.''
The email states that Talbot planned to inform staff on Thursday.
The message goes on to propose that questions from ''other parties (eg: the press) about ''whether this was a project to look at the referendum'', should be given the answer ''that there is a lot going on in Europe in the next couple of months '' pointing to some of the specific European economic issues (eg: Greece) that would be of concern to the Bank''.
Among the senior staff listed on the email and aware of the project are: Iain de Weymarn, Mark Carney's private secretary since last month; Nicola Anderson, head of risk assessment in the financial stability department; Phil Evans, director of the international division; and Jenny Scott, executive director communications.
A Bank spokesman said: ''It is stated government policy that there will be a renegotiation and national referendum on the UK's membership of the European Union at some point. It should not come as a surprise that there are a range of economic and financial issues that arise in the context of the renegotiation and national referendum. It is one of the Bank's responsibilities to assess those that relate to its objectives.
''It is not sensible to talk about this work publicly, in advance. But as with work done prior to the Scottish referendum, we will disclose the details of such work at the appropriate time. While it is unfortunate that this information has entered the public domain in this way, the Bank will maintain this approach.''
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Hoge Duitse rechter: Griekenland heeft gelijk met WO II-schuldclaim - Joop.nl
Wed, 20 May 2015 18:29
E Vanwijk, di 19 mei 2015 07:43 Reageer op EAls we nou eens die eventuele claim wegstrepen tegen alles wat Griekenland al heeft gekregen. Met name van Duitsland. Zijn we er nu al weer klaar mee.
Peter Heerens, ma 18 mei 2015 15:11 Reageer op PeterOKƒ(C),
Destijds een lening van 475 miljoen RM, en dat is nu 10 miljard 'š¬.Dat is een heel bedrag, maar ten opzichte van de schuld van Griekenland ook niet zoveel.
Bovendien loop je ook nog het risico dat Duitsland - als ze al willen betalen - het geld direct aan de schuldeisers (Duitse banken b.v.) zal storten. Ik denk dat de kans dat Grieken dat geld ooit nog in handen zullen krijgen niet zo heel groot is.
Ze zullen er hooguit een iets minder hoge schuld aan overhouden.
John Ezem, ma 18 mei 2015 10:15 Reageer op JohnGB & USA moeten nog 30 miljard betalen vw het ontketenen van de burgeroorlog.
Willem de Onttovernaar, ma 18 mei 2015 08:01 Reageer op WillemDat claimen is natuurlijk een heilloze weg. Maar het lijkt me wel goed dat Duitsland zich realiseert dat er nog ergens een minstens morele schuld zit.
Aan de andere kant: ik denk dat het Duitse bedrijfsleven het helemaal niet zo leuk vindt als de kwestie Griekenland wordt opgelost. Hoe meer rotzooi daar, hoe lager de euro en dus hoe meer Audi's, Mercedessen en BMW's er in China verkocht worden. Die lage euro doet echt wonderen. Las in NRC dat zelfs de Franse wapenindustrie weer als herboren is. De Rafale gevechtsvliegtuigen zijn plotseling niet aan te slepen.
Anders gezegd: we mogen als economisch sterkere landen van de EU dat Griekenland wel een beetje dankbaarder zijn dat ze de Euro laag houden ;)). Dus vooral niet oplossen dat probleem....
Ook hier geldt m.i. weer: follow the money!
Nick Ros, ma 18 mei 2015 00:12 Reageer op NickInternationaal Gerechtshof ? Dat wordt nog ingewikkeld.Nederland en Indiƒ. Belgiƒ en Kongo. Frankrijk met o.a. Algerije.Engeland met o.a. '‚¬...'‚¬...'‚¬... Dan nog Italiƒ en Ethiopiƒ.Spanje met Nederland (Alva) en Zuid-Amerika. Portugal met '‚¬....Verder nog Indochina. Vietnam. Wordt nog een hele klus daar in Den Haag.
Olav Meijer, zo 17 mei 2015 23:55 Reageer op OlavDe opvatting van deze rechter bij het Bundesverwaltungsgericht is geheel gerechtvaardigd en verbaast mij niets. De gedwongen '‚¬Å'lening'‚¬½ van de Griekse staat aan Duitsland(475 miljoen Reichsmark in 1942) is nooit (geheel) terugbetaald. De Grieken betaalden ook nog losgeld aan de nazi's om Joden vrij te krijgen van dwangarbeid. (In 1942 werden b.v. duizenden Griekse Joden uit de stad Thessaloniki tewerkgesteld bij bouwprojecten).De Grieken hebben ook nog recht op reƒle herstelbetalingen, maar dat is een ander verhaal.
Kees Apollo, zo 17 mei 2015 23:15 Reageer op KeesAlle Griekenhaters: het gaat hier om een lening, geen herstelbetaling oid.
Pepijn Nostrinite, zo 17 mei 2015 20:28 Reageer op PepijnMoreel verval aan Griekse zijde kent geen grenzen. Al hebben ze 100 x gelijk, om het zo te spelen getuigt van totaal gebrek aan fatsoen. Eruit die Grieken!! Zo snel mogelijk weg.
Haas Tig, zo 17 mei 2015 21:51 in reactie op Pepijn Nostrinite Reageer op HaasHoezo? Als er een terechte claim ligt, ligt er een terechte claim.En voor 10 miljard doe je echt aan financieel wanbeleid als je ten tijde van financiƒle nood een claim/"lening" kwijtscheld.
Linke Loetje, zo 17 mei 2015 23:48 in reactie op Pepijn Nostrinite Reageer op LinkeKlinkt logisch, verontwaardiging doet het altijd goed.
Cali Mero, zo 17 mei 2015 19:10 Reageer op Cali>>> Doordenkertje...
>>> Het begint er sterk op te lijken, dat nu ook Duitsland en Griekenland beiden in de "piepzak" gaan zitten...
>>> Oorzaak en gevolg van onrecht en werkelijke onrecht ervaren... en bijkomende halsstarrigheid...
>>> Het democratisch principe, ideaal en hoop....een werkelijk onafhankelijke rechtelijke uitspraak, op basis van Trias Politica...op naar het Internationale Gerechtshof voor de rechten van de mens, persoonlijk ben ik van mening, dat diepe menselijk onrecht in principe nooit kan verjaren...!!
Marius Menkveld, zo 17 mei 2015 18:25 Reageer op Mariuslijkt me dat de vlag ( kop van dit artikel ) de lading niet dekt.Er is geen hoge duitse rechter die zegt dat " Griekenland gelijk heeft met WO II schulden "
Er is een duitse meneer, die de positie van rechter bij net Bundesverwaltungsgericht vervuld, die a titre personel dit van mening is. Er is geen zaak ,er is geen uitspraak etc.
En wannneer dit zou leiden tot een echte uitspraak van het Bundesverwaltungsgericht, heb je het spel echt op de wagen; allerlei landen kunnen dit soort claims op Duitsland leggen, en duitsland kan weer claims leggen op het leegroven van duitsland door de Russen .
Ev vervolgens : waarom je beperken tot de WO II ? De Spanjaarden hebben de Lage landen leeggeroofd
De grieken hebben ten tijde van het grote griekse overheersing van grote delen van het Midden Oosten en Europa die landen ook leeggeroofd.Met een kleine disconteringsvoet van bijv 4% kom je dan op enorme bedragen die vervolgens dan weer op griekenland verhaald kunnen worden.
En vervolgens gaan we achter de Romeinen aan.....
Wake up : this is the real world.!
Jan Willem de Boer, ma 18 mei 2015 15:34 in reactie op Marius Menkveld Reageer op Jan WillemDe eerste volwassen duiding.
Bas Ooms, zo 17 mei 2015 17:31 Reageer op BasMijn vader (sergeant) werd, tijdens zijn gevangenschap in Duitsland, gedwongen lijken te ruimen. Hoeveel kan ik als nabestaande nog vangen ?
Co Stuifbergen, zo 17 mei 2015 22:23 in reactie op Bas Ooms Reageer op CoBas,
Bij mijn weten heeft de Nederlandse regering in de jaren '60 met de Bondsrepubliek afgesproken dat de Bondsrepubliek een schadevergoeding betaalt aan NL, en dat daarmee alle andere Nederlandse vorderingen komen te vervallen.
De NL overheid zou volgens mij daarmee NL getroffenen moeten kunnen compenseren.
Overigens zijn ook in Duitsland slachtoffers van de nazi's gevallen.
Printsessa Romashka, zo 17 mei 2015 17:17 Reageer op PrintsessaMooie foto van de strijders van ELAS.
Mike Peeters, zo 17 mei 2015 17:04 Reageer op MikeDan zou Zwitserland ook ons goud eens moeten teruggeven...
Bert Vlierman, zo 17 mei 2015 19:55 in reactie op Mike Peeters Reageer op BertMike, dan zou de Nederlandse regering die teruggave moeten eisen van Zwitserland. Los daarvan hebben de Grieken, terecht, geen boodschap aan wat Nederland de Zwitsers vraagt. Nederland vraagt maar of niet, en als het vraagt blijkt wel wat rechtmatig is. Gelukkig oordeelt de massa daar niet over.
m vdb, ma 18 mei 2015 09:25 in reactie op Mike Peeters Reageer op mzwitserland hoeft niks, zij hebben destijds gewoon voor het goud betaald aan de aanbieder ( duitsers)
willem vandelden, zo 17 mei 2015 16:48 Reageer op willemJa, Jopio, prima rechter, nu wij nog met een claim, vervolgens Frankrijk met een claim, daarna Polen met een claim, en Engeland, en Spanje, en Italie enzovoorts....en wij zitten dan met zijn alletjes met een totaal failliet Duitsland, dat wij dus met zijn alletjes weer op de benen moeten zien te krijgen................want ander zijn wij zelf totaal de lul.Jongen toch.
casparus dankers, ma 18 mei 2015 00:23 in reactie op willem vandelden Reageer op casparusMis.Het gaat hier over een LENING.Heel wat anders dan de wiedergutmachung.Griekenland heeft recht op die centen.
Piet Maneo, zo 17 mei 2015 15:52 Reageer op PietDoe het niet Griekenland. Als jullie naar de rechter stappen zullen anderen dat ook doen. Zo is er bijvoorbeeld een haircut op Griekse schuld geweest ter waarde van 100 miljard. Die kan gemakkelijk via de rechter ongedaan worden gemaakt. Dan komen jullie nog verder in de problemen.
Bas Grootel, zo 17 mei 2015 15:43 Reageer op BasIs de tweede wereldoorlog nog een feit voor de generatie duitsers en grieken. Nee. Maar om de grieken nu zo uit te roken met armoede lijkt me ook niet de oplossing. Duitsers. En vooral Merkel. Is steeds meer een toonbeeld van onmenselijkheid. Lijkt me niet leuk voor een politicus.
Frits Jansen, zo 17 mei 2015 15:42 Reageer op FritsHet Bundesverwaltungsgericht in Leipzig is de hoogste *bestuursrechter* in Duitsland. Hoewel het Bundesverfassungsgericht niet "hoger" is kan daar nog wel worden geklaagd over ongrondwettelijkheid.
Enfin, ik denk dat het al bijna tijd is om de Grieken te feliciteren met hun creativiteit. Helaas vrees ik dat de Duitse schuld niet uitreikt (ausreicht) om Griekenland meteen uit alle zorgen te helpen.
Dirk Jan, zo 17 mei 2015 15:27 Reageer op Dirk"Ook particuliere schadeclaims uit de Tweede Wereldoorlog maken volgens de rechter nog kans. "
Aha, nou laat ik dan die afgezaagde grap maar maken:Mijn opa heeft ook nog een 'uitgeleende' fiets te goed.
Joop Schouten, zo 17 mei 2015 14:47 Reageer op JoopGoeie rechter.
Camilla Rasmussen, zo 17 mei 2015 16:41 in reactie op Joop Schouten Reageer op CamillaJa maar hij kan zich vergissen.Zo heeft Duitsland ophouden te bestaan vanaf 45 voor een aantal jaren.In het Oosten hebben de Russen bovendien alles geroofd, waar de Grieken nu opeens zo een goede vriendjes mij aan het worden zijn.
Joop Schouten, ma 18 mei 2015 17:59 in reactie op Camilla Rasmussen Reageer op JoopDeze rechter vergist zich niet. Bekijk deze geschiedenis maar eens.
willem vandelden, zo 17 mei 2015 16:51 in reactie op Joop Schouten Reageer op willemZo is dat, Joop, jij gaat er vast vol overtuiging mee akkoord dat niet alleen jouw uitkering, maar ook de kinderbijslag voor jouw kids, de AOW voor je ouders en de bijstand voor gehandicapten wordt gehalveerd zo niet geschapt.Leg me even uit wat hier zo rechtvaardig of goed aan is.
Raven 63, zo 17 mei 2015 19:29 in reactie op willem vandelden Reageer op RavenWillem, hoe kƒ"m je daarbij?? Leg eens uit?
Dehnus NĦrder, zo 17 mei 2015 18:45 in reactie op Joop Schouten Reageer op DehnusEn de onteigende huisen van Duitsers met een vakantiehuisje dan? Kijk je kunt nog zo'n hekel hebben aan Duitsers maar dat gaat wel twee kanten op natuurlijk.
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The IMF leaks Greece -- Puppet Masters -- Sott.net
Thu, 21 May 2015 01:32
(C) Reuters
Whenever secret or confidential information or documents are leaked to the press, the first question should always be who leaked it and why. That's often more important than the contents of what has been leaked. And since there's been a lot of hullabaloo about a leaked document the past two days, here's a closer look. Spoiler alert: the document(s) don't reveal much of anything new, despite the hullabaloo.On Saturday, Paul Mason at Channel 4 in Britain posted an IMF document(s) that according to him says, among other things, that the IMF expects a June 5 Grexit - in one form or another - if there is no agreement before that date between Athens and its creditors, 'the institutions' (of which the IMF itself is one).
The leaking is simply what it is as long as we don't know the how and why. But the question will remain why somebody takes the risk to leak something only a small and select group of people are privy to. Is it leaked because it's politically important, does Paul Mason pay a lot of money for leaks? Or is it perhaps an intentional leak, in this case ordered by IMF higher-ups? And if so, for what reason? A veiled threat?
Fact is that when you look through the documents Mason published, you notice that he adds his own interpretation to them. Mason, to whom documents seem to be leaked on a regular basis - he wrote about 2 more leaked documents 3 months ago - for instance suggests quite strongly in his write up at Channel 4 that June 5th is the date for a possible default.
However, the documents don't mention that date. They only talk about June, not June 5. Mason writes about IMF 'staff': "They point to the '‚¬1.5 billion due to the IMF in June as the first vulnerable payment."
The '‚¬1.5 billion is not one payment, though. The first June payment, at least according to a Bloomberg overview , which is indeed scheduled for June 5, is 'only' '‚¬310 million. There are then subsequent payments to the IMF scheduled on June 12 ('‚¬348 million), June 16 ('‚¬581 million), and June 19 (another '‚¬348 million). These are rough numbers, there are slightly different ones doing the rounds; still, they'll do.
But June 5 is by no means carved in stone as a default date ('‚¬310 million might be feasible for Athens), though Mason does make it seem like that. Every single day counts now in the negotiations. And a '‚¬310 million payment on June 5 would buy Greece at least another week. Which may prove crucial. For both sides of the negotiating table. Greece might even miss one or two payments; the consequences of such a move would be mainly a political decision, meaning there's some room to move.
We noticed, by the way, another example of 'Masonic' interpretation in the video that accompanies the article. In it, Mason claims (at about 1:10) that "..the writer of this document thinks Greek pensions are too generous even now." While it's possible that he talked to the writer, or received additional information that he doesn't mention, fact is that the document doesn't corroborate his statement in the video. There's no mention of this claim. Maybe it's Paul Mason's own opinion?!
The main sticking points with the 'institutions' now seem to be 'labor reform' (i.e. down with the unions -how IMF can you get?) and pensions. Syriza has once again said this morning that it refuses to cave in on either. And there's also the case of the 4000 or so re-hired cleaning ladies and school guards. The well-paid negotiators from Brussels and Washington want them out of their poorly paid jobs again. Not going to happen on Tsipras' watch.
Yanis Varoufakis has already made clear what Syriza thinks should be done with the debt it owes to Europe: it should be swapped for paper with a repayment schedule that stretches way into the future. Looking at (re)payment schedules, it becomes clear this is not just a hollow idea. If Europe would allow for such a swap, Greece's debt picture would change radically overnight. It would take away a large part of the burden this year:
And when this year is over, everything looks a lot sunnier:The biggest speedbump in Greece's repayment schedule is summer 2015. Take that away and things look completely different. All the institutions need to do is to provide Greece with some leeway. It's very possible to do so. If the EC, ECB and IMF decide not to allow for that leeway, there can -again- be only one conclusion, as I said before: Greece Is Now Just A Political Issue.The 'big kahuna' issue for Syriza has been, ever since it won the elections in late January, that its voters want something seemingly impossible: an end to austerity combined with continued membership of the eurozone. 'The institutions' won't let Greece have both. Which has a lot to do with the fact that polls show continued support for euro membership in Greece; it's one big hammer that Tsipras can be banged over the head with, day after day.
'The institutions', and indeed the international media, expect Greece to cave in to their demands for more austerity at the 'final moment', because the alternative would not only be horrific - at least presumably - it would go against the wishes of the Greek people. What not a lot of people seem to understand is that Syriza can't give in, because it would mean the end of Syriza.
However, if the institutions force a Greece default, that would bring a potential disintegration of the eurozone much closer than it is today. And whoever says they're confident it can be contained are delusional liars. The risks for all three, EC, ECB and IMF, would far outstrip the few billion euros on which they may receive repayment a few years later. And they should not want these risks. Not if they have functioning neurons left.
But the biggest threat to the negotiations may not come from the institutions after all. It may well come from inside Syriza. As the Greek Analyst site reported this morning:
Call For "Rupture Now" By The Political Secretariat & Central Committee Of Syriza
Prominent members of the Central Committee and the Political Secretariat of Syriza are preparing an event for tomorrow, Tuesday May 19. Quoting from the event description, as well as the title of the invitation-pamphlet, the message of the event seems quite clear: "the only way out [of the impasse] is the choice of rupture with the lenders." :
The Moment of Truth For Syriza: "Rupture now with the lenders."
The moment of truth has arrived. The lenders are pressuring the government to sign a Memorandum agreement of neoliberal strategy (privatizations, demolition of the insurance-pension system and of the labour rights, ENFIA, VAT tax, etc.)
It turns out that the agreement of the 20th of February facilitated, objectively, this attack and "creative ambiguity" favored the powerful. The assumption that a radical program of anti-austerity can be build with the tolerance of the neoliberal steering wheels of the Eurozone proved wrong. Now, we are moving to the critical hour of decisions for the government, the party of SYRIZA, and the social majority.
We need to choose between the signing of the looming austerity agreement and the rupture with the lenders. SYRIZA cannot be turned into a party of austerity; neither can the government implement the Memorandum. This is the reason why, both domestically and abroad, proposals for the internal "cleansing" of SYRIZA and governmental solutions for "national unity" are put on the table.
For all those reasons, the only way out is the choice of rupture with the lenders. With a suspension of repayments [of the debt], measures that restrict the "freedom" of capital flight, governmental control over the banks, taxation of capital and of the rich for the financing of pro-people measures, support of this policy with any and all possible means, and with the possible break from the EMU.
For all of the above, we invite you to discuss in the open event of Rproject on Tuesday 19/5 in 7:00pm at ESIEA. Today, the future of workers, unemployed, pensioners, young people is judged. And at the same time, the future of the Radical Left in Greece, but also internationally.
Anatole Kaletsky thinks Syriza will blink. I saw that a few days ago with all of its assumptions and I thought: whatever. I don't even think Kaletsky knows what Syriza is. There are too many opinions and too many assumptions out there that see the negotiations as just that: negotiations (that will end badly for Tsipras and Varoufakis). But Syriza is not just another thirteen in a dozen political party. It comes with principles that it will not and cannot sell to the highest bidder. That, more than anything else, makes this a political issue.
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NA-Tech News
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Markets Are Jumpy Over Coming Leap Second - NASDAQ.com
Wed, 20 May 2015 18:19
By Stephanie Yang
Wall Street's latest worry: Y2K's distant cousin, the leap second.
Traders and exchange officials are prepping for the latest incidence when a seemingly innocuous time change could potentially cause havoc if computer systems aren't made ready.
In this case, it is the leap second, an event that happens every few years when the standard time around the world is adjusted by one second to account for a slight mismatch between clocks and the Earth's rotation. With lightning-quick trading tied to computers now the norm in markets, the leap second has regulators, exchanges and traders worrying about potential pitfalls like it is 1999.
"These guys are agonizing over it," said Steve Allen, a programmer-analyst at the University of California'sLick Observatory. "It is definitely a hassle."
This year, the leap second will be added on June 30, right before 8 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, or midnight Coordinated Universal Time/Greenwich Mean Time, when after-hours markets are usually still open for trading in the U.S. and some major Asian markets are just starting up.
Potentially complicating matters, exchanges globally are approaching the extra time differently, with Asian markets largely planning to trade as planned, while U.S. exchanges make moves to curtail trading around the leap second.
Exchanges also have varying approaches to account for the extra second.
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission requested that all exchanges turn in a plan of action by Friday. "For the most part, we're not too worried," said a CFTC spokeswoman. "But of course as the regulator, we do need to ensure folks are ready,"
The Futures Industry Association, a trade group that includes banks and brokerage firms, hosted a webinar Thursday for about 130 industry professionals on the issue.
Many in U.S. markets still worry about technology glitches after the May 2010 "flash crash" and other problems from trading-desk systems gone awry. The risk in adding a leap second is that trading desks will be unprepared to accommodate the extra tick of the clock and could break down, act unpredictably or give investors a faulty time stamp on a trade.
Mr. Allen, the analyst who has studied leap seconds, expressed concerns that different markets appear to be taking varied approaches to the issue. That could heighten the chance of investors' transactions being rejected or related system failures, he said.
Many exchange officials and regulators say the event likely will pass without incident, just as the much-feared Y2K bug was a dud at the start of the new year in 2000. In that event, firms from a variety of industries spent years preparing their computers to deal with the extra zeros at the end of the year, but in the end, disruptions were minimal.
But the leap-second risk isn't hypothetical. When the last leap second was added, over a weekend in 2012, several high-profile websites suffered problems, including those of LinkedIn Corp., Reddit, Yelp Inc. and Qantas Airways Ltd.
The coming leap second is the first to take place during active trading hours since 1997, when computers and algorithms weren't nearly as important to markets as they are now.
"This is really an industry issue," said Brian Adams, chief information officer at brokerage firm Rosenthal Collins Group and vice president in the FIA's market-technology division. "It's now up to us to really understand how this is going to impact our world, so we all need to be prepared."
CME Group Inc.'sChicago Mercantile Exchange and Intercontinental Exchange Inc., which trade futures and other derivatives tied to stocks and bonds, plan to delay some regular openings of their electronic evening sessions until after 8 p.m. Eastern time to circumvent the leap second. Many contracts on the two derivatives-trading giants open for electronic trading in the U.S. during the evening hours and then trade continuously until the late afternoon
or early evening the following day.
On June 30, the exchange operators are pushing back trading in some product markets, including agricultural commodities, natural gas, crude oil and S&P 500 stock-index futures and options.
In a statement, ICE said it is "confident" the leap second "will not cause any issues on our systems; however, we cannot guarantee the same for all systems used by our participants, market data vendors, and other third parties."
Large U.S. stock exchanges including New York Stock Exchange's NYSE Arca, Nasdaq OMX Group Inc.'s Nasdaq and BATS Global Markets will close their after-hours sessions 30 minutes before their regular 8 p.m. close.
While European markets including London are largely closed when the event is scheduled to occur, other markets affected include Japan, Australia, South Korea and Singapore, which all will go about normal trading and plan to handle the leap second different ways.
According to the FIA, markets in Japan plan to deal with the leap second with a process known as dilution, where the seconds leading up to the extra second are stretched out slightly. Australia and South Korea will dilute the time in the seconds following the switch. Singapore markets won't adjust for the extra second until the morning after the leap second, the FIA added.
One trading firm, KCG Holdings, has spent the past couple of months testing software for each individual reaction to the leap second, said a person familiar with the matter. Others are ramping up in recent weeks or making plans to reduce trading around the event.
Firms "might come out of it with records that are not trustworthy," noted Victor Yodaiken, chief executive of FSMLabs, which assists Wall Street firms with synchronization issues. It has the potential to lead to some "very expensive days."
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires 05-18-151842ET Copyright (c) 2015 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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It's Time to Tax the Robots, Not the People SmoothSpan Blog
Sun, 24 May 2015 15:16
I read a fascinating piece on the economic impact self-driving cars and trucks will have and it's not a pretty sight. A quick glance at this map showing the most common job in each state makes it clear:
The most common job in each state in 2014'...
You don't have to study the map very long to conclude automating truck driving away as a way of life is going to have a profound effect on our economy. When you consider that truck drivers make an average of $40,000 a year, which is more than almost half of all tax payers, and you add in all the jobs related to the truck driving industry, it may be one of the biggest impacts we see in our lifetimes.
Can this really happen? When will it happen?
The article goes on to show that the world's first driverless truck has already hit the road in Nevada, and was built by Mercedes Benz. They present estimates from a variety of sources that suggest somewhere between 2020 and 2030 completely autonomous trucks will begin to take over by storm. Google has demonstrated self-driving vehicles and Teslas have the capability already built in to cars already on the road.
All of the proponents of driverless vehicles are loudly trumpeting that the vehicles are safer, cheaper, and more fuel efficient. But what they're not considering is the impact on the economy. What will all the truck drivers that lose their jobs do to earn a living? Who will benefit?
As it stands, large organizations that can afford to buy driverless vehicles will be the beneficiaries and nobody has a plan for what will happen to the truck drivers.
This looks like the third tranche of job-destroying disruption. The other two''the destruction of Retail jobs first by firms like Walmart and later by the Internet, and the Offshoring and Automation of Manufacturing jobs, are well underway. The economy is still limping in the wake of the Great Recession, and it's tough to say we're out of the woods except for the most dyed in the wool political supporters who want to claim victory for their side. Meanwhile, Main Street America is braced and wondering what the next big shock to the Middle Class will be.
The article argues its time to get some sort of Basic Income plan in place to provide a Safety Net. Safety Nets are fine, but I want to know how the Middle Class can do better than a Safety Net. A vibrant Middle Class does not sit at home waiting for its next Government Safety Net check to do something. A vibrant Middle Class has hopes, dreams, and upward mobility. Those are all things a Safety Net can't cover''only Opportunity can provide hope or fulfill dreams.
It's time to start Taxing the Robots, Not the People.
If the Robots are going to take over more and more of the economy to the detriment of the People and the benefit of those few who can own thousands of Robots, why not tax the Robots? In fact, why not look at any practice that wholesale destroys lots of jobs as being worthy of taxes to pay for programs to help those who've been displaced?
If we look at it that way, there are several areas to think about applying progressive taxes:
'' Taxes on automation and robots
'' Taxes on offshoring jobs
'' Taxes on monopolies that take over markets and then use their unfair influence to gut jobs by destroying all competition
These taxes will automatically be progressive. They will help balance the playing field so that progress can still come, but there are costs that result in funds to help those displaced by progress. We don't want to eliminate the progress, we just want to even out some of the unfairness that comes when we let progress run completely roughshod.
So far, we've done very much the opposite, which is part of our problem. Our system makes hiring more expensive not less. However good its intentions, Obamacare is a net job reducer because businesses have to pay for it based on how many employees they have. What if instead they paid based on how many robots, or on how many jobs they had offshored?
There's been such a massive transfer of wealth that clearly there is money to pay for such programs. Much more than enough. While we're at it, we should be exempting smaller businesses from such programs. It's been well proven that Small Businesses are the engines of job creation and growth. As a nation, we're sold on the idea of more and more progressive taxes for people, but we have left off progressive taxes for businesses.
We have a tax system that allows 43% of Americans to pay no Federal Income Tax. Why not a system that allows the smallest 43% of businesses to pay no taxes? That would dramatically level the playing field and re-ignite Small Business growth.
So, in a nutshell, what we could do to offset a continuing economic disaster for the Middle Class would be:
1. Tax Robots, Offshoring, and Monopolies so that organizations involved with these practices have the highest tax rates
2. Radically lower taxes for Small Business. Some meaningful fraction of them shouldn't have to pay taxes at all. Perhaps not 43%, but certainly the 20% or so smallest business. Make up that lost revenue by increased taxes on larger businesses.
3. Make #1 and #2 net positive tax revenue generators to allow for new programs.
4. Put a solid Safety Net in place.
5. Stimulate the Small Business economy with what's left. In addition to Radically Lower Small Business Taxes, we should increase the availability of Small Business Loans and we should make Education cheaper. The latter will make it easier for those whose jobs were automated away to retrain as well as ensuring an increasing pool of talented labor.
The biggest obstacle in all this thinking is that currently, the people calling the shots in terms of lobbying and poltiical contributions are precisely the ones we propose to have pay for these new programs with new taxes.
How will we ever break out of that cycle?
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Use Of Cellphones Linked With Brain Cancer In Massive Study
Wed, 20 May 2015 18:19
This is NOT good news about cellphone use and brain cancer | Ridofranz via Getty Images
A new study out of Sweden indicates that talking on cellphones and even cordless phones can be related to a certain form of brain cancer.
The study, published in the journal Pathophysiology in October, analyzed the results of 1,498 cases of people with malignant brain tumours and 3,530 controls to determine whether phone use had any effect on their cancer.
In their findings, it appeared that the longer a person used a cell or cordless phone, the more likely they were to get become gliomas, a type of tumour found in the brain or spinal cord that is malignant in 80 per cent of cases, according to WebMD.
''The risk is three times higher after 25 years of use. We can see this clearly,'' the study's lead researcher, Dr. Lennart Hardell, told Reuters.
Those who had only been using a cell or cordless phone for less than a year were at the least amount of risk, while those who used their phone on the same side of the body (or "ipsilaterally") for many years had the highest odds for brain cancer.
The cause for concern with cellphones comes from the radiofrequency energy, a type of electromagnetic radiation emitted by the phones, explains the National Cancer Institute. These waves can then be absorbed by the tissues of the brain, and it is not yet understood how this may or may not affect the development of cancer.
Dr. Gabriel Zada, a neurosurgeon in California, noted to Reuters that children could be particularly at risk due to having smaller heads, thinner skulls and higher brain conductivity.
Earlier this year, a study from France found similar results about cellphone use and glioma, though the results in that study showed tumours developing on the opposite side of the brain, reported The Atlantic's The Wire.
As of October, the International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified cellphones as "possibly carcinogenic," according to the World Health Organization, which is planning for a further study into health outcomes from phones by 2016.
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A Bluetooth headset is one of the best ways to reduce exposure, as it allows the user to keep the source of radiation at a distance. Although this advice is often heard, it is seldom followed. If you find it tedious to use a Bluetooth headset all the time, try at least to use it on longer calls as well as during dial-up and the first few seconds of a call, when the phone is emitting its highest level of radiation. It is also a good idea to avoid keeping the mobile phone turned on all night and sitting on the nightstand next to your pillow.
When the reception signal is poor, the phone compensates by turning up the strength of the signals it emits. Consequently, it is recommended to limit the length of calls in places where reception is limited: underground parking lots, in rural areas far away from phone towers, or in cars (even while stopped). Also, avoid using a mobile phone on a rapidly moving train or bus, as the passage between different cell towers along the route similarly causes the phone to turn up its signal emission.
Since children's bodies are still developing, they could be more susceptible than adults to any potential negative effects of electromagnetic radiation. Parents should delay giving children their own mobile phones until it is absolutely necessary and limit the time a child spends using the device.
Several shops and websites offer gadgets that claim to protect phone users from electromagnetic radiation. Unfortunately, the vast majority of these devices do not live up to their claims, according to a series of tests conducted by the French National Agency for Health Safety (ANSES). In particular, the anti-radiation stickers designed to be stuck on the back of a mobile phone have absolutely no impact. On the other hand, some anti-radiation phone cases have been shown to limit the user's absorption of the phone's rays, but they make it nearly impossible to receive or make a call.
NEXT: Could carrying a mobile phone cause impotence?
Major cell phone releases guarantee a debate over technological superiority. And in the health community, the debate over cell phones' link to cancer is re-ignited. In a Clean Technica blog questioning the environmental friendliness of the iPhone 5, commenter vetxcl outright rejected the idea: "Smart phones emit more cancer causing radiation than other phones. This is a smart phone. Since it causes cancer, it is not green. It's that simple folks."
Does the thought of losing your cell phone make you panic? If so, join the club. In June, the digital security company Lookout surveyed 2,097 people, and revealed that 94 percent feared going without their mobile devices. (73 percent felt ''panicked'' when it happened.)
The iPhone 5 is a multi-tasker's dream. More like a pocket-sized computer, you can listen to music, review documents, and even analyze your facial attractiveness with a finger scroll. But unlike a computer, this device is smaller than the size of your hand. Those tiny fonts in bright screens can make you squint and strain your eyes, a problem that affects almost 70 per cent of American adults according to a new survey by the Vision Council, an organization that represents manufacturers of optical supplies. This can lead to computer vision syndrome, an eye condition that can lead to dry eyes, difficulty focusing, and even double vision.
Two-time U.S. texting champion Austin Wierschke, 17, can type up to six characters per second, but one expert says that those fast fingers may lead to chronic pain later on in life. "When you're typing on a device with speed and repetition, you may cause pain and inflammation," says Dr. Dean Fishman, chiropractic physician and owner/operator of the Text Neck Institute in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. He originally coined the phrase "text neck" to describe the stress and pressure that can be triggered by mobile browsing and sending text messages.
Your cell phone follows you everywhere '-- and for 75 per cent of Americans that includes the toilet '' but are you keeping it clean? One study found fecal matter on 1-in-6 cell phones in Britain. That ick factor might make you cringe, but it can get you sick, too. Fecal matter can spread E. coli bacteria, which can cause diarrhea, urinary tract infections, and even kidney failure, which can be deadly. Bacteria can also spread to your skin and trigger breakouts.
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General Motors says it owns your car's software
Thu, 21 May 2015 00:39
Buy a General Motors vehicle lately? Check the fine print. The company says you may not own some parts of a vehicle that actually make it run.In comments sure to rankle customers, a GM attorney said Tuesday the company believes the software that controls every vehicle function belongs to them. Even after customers pay tens of thousands of dollars for a car, the company says users are merely signing a licensing agreement to use it over its lifetime.
"It is our position the software in the vehicle is licensed by the owner of the vehicle," attorney Harry Lightsey said.
The comments came in Los Angeles during a hearing conducted by the US Copyright Office, which will soon decide whether to grant exemptions in copyright laws that would allow independent mechanics and gearheads to continue fix and repair cars.
A pivotal question the federal officials must answer in making that determination is whether car companies maintain proprietary rights to software that underpins vehicles or whether customers can modify their purchases as they see fit.
GM's stance is a sweeping one. Cars today are mobile computing networks. Critical functions like steering, acceleration and braking are all controlled by software. Each GM model contains an average of 30 electronic control units. Without legal access to these ECUs and the software that run them, mechanics and others who enjoy working on cars may need to cease repairs.
GM's comments echoed those of heavy equipment manufacturer John Deere, which asserted lifetime ownership rights of software found in its products in written submissions to the Copyright Office. Every three years, the office hears arguments for whether certain activities should be exempted from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's Section 1201.
General Motors currently prompts customers to sign licensing agreements for some vehicle functions, like its OnStar navigation and infotainment packages. Although they don't have car buyers sign agreements for all ECUs, the company is now claiming that licensing principle applies across the entire car.
"What we have in today's world, for example, is there is a license agreement for GM's telematics system and for the infotainment system, and those are the systems the owner interacts with and comes in direct contact with," Lightsey said. "It would be difficult to have licenses for the myriad number of ECUs in a vehicle."
Owners have more rights than licensees under existing laws '' or a proposed exemption '' to modify these software codes without infringing on copyright protections. So the distinction between the two is important to General Motors' request that the Copyright Office deny the proposed exemption.
In explicitly having customers sign agreements for telematics and infotainment services but not other ECUs, Kit Walsh, a lawyer for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a nonprofit that's fighting for individuals' right to repair cars, argues the company has drawn its own line between what software is licensed and which is owned.
"It's pretty clear that there's no written agreement that restricts a purchaser's ability to use and re-sell that copy," he said.
Further complicating GM's argument over ownership is the fact licenses for OnStar are not necessarily transferred from one person to the next when a car is sold. Unless the previous owner cancels their OnStar subscription, the company acknowledged it lacks a mechanism to track these changes.
"Our position would be when they transfer the car, they transfer what they own '' the car itself '' and the license to operate that software," Lightsey said.
The broader issue of whether an exemption to the DMCA's section 1201 is granted could hinge on these used-car transfers. But there are pitfalls on both sides of the issue.
If an exemption is granted and mechanics and car enthusiasts could make any modifications they wanted to software, Jacqueline Charlesworth, general counsel for the Copyright Office, said she found it "troubling" potential buyers of used cars could be left unaware of what changes were made.
"You're putting that burden on buyers of many, many used cars to have that software system completely evaluated," she said. "To me, I don't know, that's a troubling prospect that in an ordinary used-car transaction you have to be worried about whether there's been a software modification."
She feared a scenario that would pose a danger to safety, such as a used-car buyer purchasing a car that had airbags purposely disabled. A driver may be unaware of such a modification until it was too late.
Regardless of whether an exemption is granted, observers said they foresee General Motors and other carmakers adding more licensing agreements that cover ECUs. They fear these agreements would undercut mechanics' legal rights to tinker with cars and innovate. Meanwhile they predict OEMs will increasingly pressure customers to only use approved dealerships and parts for their cars.
Kyle Wiens, a right-to-repair advocate who founded ifixit.com, a do-it-yourself repair website, said the auto industry can only squeeze so hard before consumers will fight back.
"I think people are starting to get more savvy," he said. "We have had this expectation of being able to modify software. We've been adding apps and jailbreaking phones. So we know how to modify software. Those guys know how to modify hardware. Now it's time for the two to get together."
Related Video:
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On Mozilla's forced SSL - joepie91's Ramblings
Mon, 18 May 2015 00:47
Yesterday, Mozilla made a blogpost, stating that they will be "deprecating non-secure HTTP" - in other words, forcing HTTPS. I believe that this decision is harmful to the open web, and this is why.
First of all, for those who are not familiar with me - I actively encourage people to use SSL/TLS wherever possible. I do not believe that there is data that is "not important enough to encrypt".
I do however believe that there are fundamental problems with the way TLS is currently deployed in practice, problems that absolutely need solving before a forced global deployment of TLS can happen.
Yes, it's broken. Any certificate authority in the world can sign a certificate for any hostname in the world, regardless of whether that's the actual CA being used by the real owner of that hostname. This means that anybody with access to the signing infrastructure of any certificate authority anywhere in the world, can sign fake certificates for everybody else.
While TLS can still provide data confidentiality against passive attackers, and this problem can be circumvented in custom applications and API libraries by hardcoding a certificate or CA into the client, it is very much broken in the common "TLS on the web" implementation.
Certificate pinning is suggested as a 'solution', but still requires to trust the certificate on the first connection, and it doesn't provide an easy migration path for service operators who want to switch their certificates to a different certificate authority. It's also still not actually implemented by major browsers.
It's really that simple. You are essentially forced to pay for a certificate if you want to use TLS. If you do not, and try to use a self-signed certificate, a browser will show a scary warning page to your users. You can't even embed (iframe) pages using self-signed certificates at all. The browser will simply refuse to load the page, not even showing a warning.
Domain-validated certificates have a cost of practically zero to generate. It's all automated. Higher-validation certificates have a non-zero, but still trivial cost to generate - the cost is purely in the validation work, which is generally a repetitive and largely automatable job.
Higher-validation certificates generally do come with insurance, but there is no way to 'opt out' of this if you don't need it - as is the case for the majority of non-corporate uses of an SSL certificate.
In short; the true cost of an SSL certificate is generally several magnitudes lower than what you're being charged for it. And everyone charges like that. It's a racket.
"But Startcom gives away free certificates!", you say. Well, no, not really.
The domain-validated certificates that Startcom provides are indeed free to generate. Revocation, however, even in the situation of a global security issue that is completely out of your control, will cost you money.
Revocation is a vital part of a secure TLS cryptosystem. If you don't pay Startcom, you are unable to revoke, and this breaks the security model of TLS. Your security is broken.
Startcom is not really free.
"But," you say, "Let's Encrypt is just around the corner!"
It is. It will also - at least, initially - only offer basic domain-validated, multi-host certificates. It is apparently undecided as of yet whether wildcard domains will be supported. Other scenarios may also not be supported.
"But if you need a wildcard certificate, surely you have the money to pay for it?" Well, no, not necessarily. Right now, I'm building a free CDN for non-commercial projects. This would ideally let me provide a separate subdomain for every user - something that isn't feasible without a wildcard certificate, if TLS were to be enforced. I don't have the money for such a certificate - keep in mind that this is all non-commercial - and it would be ludicrous to expect otherwise.
"But you can just generate a new certificate for every subdomain!" Yes, you could. In complex setups, however, that quickly becomes a bookkeeping nightmare. You now have to add infrastructure for the specific purpose of propagating TLS certificates across multiple frontend servers. Not to mention that if Let's Encrypt goes down at any point, your entire registration system is down.
And on top of that, Let's Encrypt is only one certificate authority. If they are ever removed from browser trust stores - don't forget that it is still very experimental - you have exactly zero alternatives, other than to suddenly pay for some other CA.
Yes, but you will not be able to use many new features. A quote from the original article:
For the first of these steps, the community will need to agree on a date, and a definition for what features are considered ''new''. For example, one definition of ''new'' could be ''features that cannot be polyfilled''. That would allow things like CSS and other rendering features to still be used by insecure websites, since the page can draw effects on its own (e.g., using ). But it would still restrict qualitatively new features, such as access to new hardware capabilities.
Those features are not disabled for 'security reasons', as some people in the comments on the Mozilla post have suggested. They are disabled to pressure you into using TLS.
"But you won't need those features!" Maybe you do, maybe you don't. Isn't the point of an 'open web' that the same features are available to everybody, regardless of financial means or other qualifications? Hell, I personally use many newer features to build non-commercial projects.
In conclusion; no, TLS certificates are not really free. Introducing forced TLS would create an imbalance between those who have the money and means to purchase a certificate (or potentially many certificates), and those who don't - all the while promoting a cryptosystem as being 'secure' when there are known problems with it. This is directly counter to an open web.
There are plenty of problems with TLS that need to be fixed before pressuring people to use it. Let's start with that first.
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Google Reportedly Prepping Click-to-Buy Mobile Search Ads | Digital - Advertising Age
Wed, 20 May 2015 15:29
Google's Latest Ad Price Declines Are Because of YouTube, Not MobileA click-to-buy ad on Google is a big deal because it could close the loop on advertisers' campaigns by giving brands cold, hard evidence that an ad led to a sale -- something hard to come by when people see an ad for a product but don't buy the product until sometime later.
Google and its chief digital ad sales rival Facebook have been trying to do a better job of mapping that purchase path, but the hardest part is considered to be bridging that final transaction with everything that came before it. It would be a lot easier if the transaction and the ads that led to it all live in the same place, which appears to be Google's plan.
But many advertisers are still in the dark about Google's plans.
"They haven't really been communicating about it at all," Ms. Lim said. Macy's is reportedly in talks to use the click-to-buy ads, but others are trying to kick-start the conversation.
Google has responded to some agency inquiries with an oblique memo that neither confirms nor denies the report. In the memo -- which was provided to Ad Age on the condition that it only be paraphrased -- Google said that it has been working on ways to make the purchase experience on retailers' mobile sites and apps better and has a product in early development to make the mobile purchase experience better on Google's own properties.
Google may need to offer more answers before some of its biggest advertisers are willing to try out the new ad product. Brands may be concerned that, in exchange for the buy button, they'll need to hand Google even more data about their products. Walmartreportedly stopped buying Google's ads that display which local stores have a product in stock and at what price over such concerns. However advertisers may not have much to fear.
"My understanding was that they don't have to provide that data [to Google]. Google will be privy to transactional data, but that would be to [brands'] benefit because it will let them target ads based on buying patterns," Ms. Lim said.
Google did not immediately respond to a request for comment sent on Tuesday.
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SnowJob
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Reddit Now Funds Tor | a.nolen
Thu, 21 May 2015 01:14
Alexis Ohanian, the face of Reddit.
Reddit, the ''front page of the internet'', now partially funds the Tor Project. The Tor Project is an internet ''anonymity network'' which was set up by the US Navy. Tor claims to help internet users hide from repressive governments, in reality it's a US espionage tool designed to get 'interesting' targets to self-select.
Tor users are not sophisticated actors. Organizations which are serious about security do not use Tor, because rumblings about Tor's 'vulnerabilities' have been reaching the mainstream media since 2007 (at least). Why would agencies like the NSA want to watch poorly organized and poorly informed 'onion routing' users? Well, there's the blackmail angle: child pornography is all over the Tor network. There's also the 'useful idiot' angle: simple-minded fanatics who believe they're more dangerous than they really are and who can be easily manipulated into doing things that help the 'intelligence community'. Think Lulzsec.
I've written about Reddit before: it's a website where users post links to articles, which are then 'rated' by other users'... all under the eyes of specially chosen 'moderators' who remove material they don't like. The site was founded by Alexis Ohanian, a one-time 'wunderkind' internet entrepreneur and the son of an Armenian immigrant who grew up in the 'Metroplex' around Washington D.C.. Samuel Altman of Y Combinator and Marc Andreessen of Andreessen Horowitz invested in the Reddit operation, which was bought by Cond(C) Nast, a division of the Newhouse family's Advance Publications. As of 2014, Ohanian continues as Reddit's executive chairman. The position must not keep him very busy, because Ohanian also runs an investment firm called Das Kapital Capital when he's not making tech proclamations on mainstream news networks. This is how Ohanian describes himself:
In 2006, Alexis Ohanian sold reddit.com, a startup he co-founded with Steve Huffman, to Cond(C) Nast Digital.
This made him a 23-year-old accredited investor, one of the most dangerous things in the world. Suddenly becoming more dangerous than a raptor, Jules & Vincent from Pulp Fiction, and Predator (combined) he set off to invest some of this capital in startups led by founders just like him (long on ideas, short on experience, but full of energy). Besides, he wanted to live vicariously through these of startup founders '-- only sleep better.
''I'm dangerous!''
Back in 2013 Ohanian tried to sell information about Reddit users to Stratfor via email. (So he may be dangerously stupid!) Stratfor is a sort of CIA-for-hire and Ohanian's inbox was hacked by Wikileaks. When Russia Today reported on Ohanian's nefarious business proposal, RT was ''partially banned'' from Reddit. I'm told by multiple Reddit users that linking to anolen.com will get you ghost-banned, or if you're too high-profile for that, you'll be harassed by foul-mouthed Reddit moderators.
Alongside his Tor work, Ohanian is now getting involved in international affairs. A few weeks ago he decided to insert himself into the Armenian Genocide narrative by visiting his father's native country on his birthday, which also happens to be the day designated for the genocide's memorial. All this at a time when NATO is courting Turkey in strange ways.
The thrust of the Reddit founder's platform is to get the Armenian Genocide officially recognized as a genocide by the US government'' the US, Britain and until recently France have been reluctant to call the 1915 genocide what it was'' this reluctance predates current relations with Turkey, so the stalling *probably* also has something to do with prominent international railway investors' role in the massacre of this Christian minority by the Ottomans. Putin has no problem recognizing the genocide, by the way'' so what is Ohanian doing? Perhaps voicing the concerns of US potentates who don't like seeing Islamic Turkey gain too much power.
Why would a crony-capitalist wunderkind roll the dice by propping up the Tor network'' especially when he's stretching himself thin over a century-old ethnic grievance?
I'm confident that Reddit has its genesis in the 'intelligence community' just like Tor, which makes it particularly stupid for Tor to have accepted Reddit funding. It's bad tradecraft to link different operations to each other, because when one is exposed, they all are. Tor is notorious for sloppy practices on its back-end, I've written about that here. In a nutshell, Tor tried to make itself look 'internationally diverse' by setting up a myriad of different shell organizations over the globe, but they didn't go the extra mile to make sure these shell organizations appeared to be active and take funding from different sources.
Jacob Appelbaum, the face of the Tor Project. Check out all the weirdness around him here.
I don't think Tor's, and now Reddit's, sloppiness problems are unique to their operation'' I think the whole US 'intelligence community' is run like a third-generation company. Their pathetic Twitter-like project 'Zunzuneo' is another good example of bad work.
There are some intelligence organizations that do a lot with very little, Cuba is one example and Jordan may be another one. The United States, however, is the opposite of these two. The US 'intelligence community' has phenomenal resources, but appears to have a real problem recruiting competent talent. Perhaps this is because 'IC' leaders are preoccupied with reliability instead of ability; perhaps the American 'IC' is what happens when you employ too many sons and lovers.
Tor has been criticized over the last two years for its reliance on US government funding, in 2013 the Washington Post (even!) reported that 60% of Tor's funding still comes from ''the Feds''. The WP was white-washing: it turns out that 75% of 2013 Tor funding came from the USG.
According to The Daily Dot, a very pro-Tor blog/internet news source:
In response to increasing public and internal dialogue, the organization [Tor] will be making a sustained push to increase funds from all other sources in order to decrease their dependence on the U.S. government.
Developers recently discussed the push to diversify funding at Tor's biannual meeting in Spain, including setting a goal of 50 percent non-U.S. government funding by 2016.
Tor developers at the meeting also brought up the possibility of lobbying foreign governments within, for instance, the European Union.
However, increasing non-governmental funding is a major priority.
In response to this obvious PR problem, Tor has attempted to ''eclipse'' US government sponsorship by looking for ''non-governmental'' sponsors'... like Reddit. Herein lies the great irony.
This official Reddit plush toy will only set you back US$142 and is available from the Reddit Store.
I eagerly await learning who Tor enlists over the next few months'... which EU governments, ''non-governmental'' actors and business concerns will reach out and grab the tar-baby. In the meantime, here's the list of 2015 Tor sponsors who have already self-identified:
Read all about those ''concerned citizens'' here.
Yahtzee!
'... which is overseen by the Broadcasting Board of Governors, a US propaganda organ that funded Tor through 2006-2013.
'National' as in 'United States of America'.
I guess the Swedes worked out their differences with the Jacob Appelbaum and Ed Snowden. According to the Digital Defenders Partnership:
The Digital Defenders Partnership has its origins in the Freedom Online Coalition, and is managed by Hivos, an international NGO based in the Netherlands. As an initial investment, the governments of the Netherlands, the United States, the United Kingdom, the Republic of Estonia, Republic of Latvia, Czech Republic and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) have dedicated financial support.
SIDA funded Tor from 2010-2013. Forget 'Iron Curtain', think 'Digital Curtain'.
SRI International, or as it used to be called 'The Stanford Research Institute', is a huge, US-government derived, private research consultancy which was founded in 1946 with Herbert Hoover's help and continues to do a phenomenal amount of work for the US military. Child movie star and US ambassador Shirley Temple was married to one of SRI's stars, Charles Alden Black, a Navy intelligence officer. From her Washington Post obituary:
Luminaries who paid visits to Miss Temple in Hollywood included Amelia Earhart, Albert Einstein, J. Edgar Hoover and Eleanor Roosevelt. She received an honorary child-sized Oscar in 1935.
''As long as our country has Shirley Temple,'' Franklin Roosevelt said, ''we will be all right.''
Presumably the same goes for SRI International.
Concluding remarks:
1) It's interesting that the Broadcasting Board of Governors and SIDA are now trying to hide their Tor sponsorship behind daughter/partner organizations.
2) Tor still isn't your friend.
3) Armenia, beware of Americans bearing gifts.
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Reddit CEO Ellen Pao: "It's not our site's goal to be a completely free-speech platform" | Business Insider
Thu, 21 May 2015 01:42
Interim Reddit CEO Ellen Pao is caught between a rock and a hard place when it comes to online harassment.
Last week, Reddit introduced controversial new rules to fight the rampant harassment and make users feel safer on the mega-popular social sharing and community site.
Some of Reddit's user base saw it as censorship, as too vague to possibly enforce, or as Reddit pandering to a vocal minority of complainers.
Many others appreciated the principle behind Reddit's anti-harassment stance, but saw the anti-harassment policy as lacking teeth, given the fact that Reddit wouldn't lay out specifics of what it would do with any reports of harassment.
To defend the new anti-harassment policy, Pao went on NPR's All Things Considered to give comments that only further confused the situation.
When asked if Reddit would ever delete offensive subreddits (small communities within Reddit) like ''Gas The Kikes'' (which actually exists) if it made a Jewish user uncomfortable, Pao basically dodged the question (emphasis ours):
The question is whether it would make them fear for their safety, or the safety of those around them or where it makes them feel like it's not a safe platform. Somebody expressing ideas that aren't consistent with everybody's views is something that we encourage. There are certain posts that do make people feel unsafe, that people feel threatened or they feel that their family or friends or people near them are going to be unsafe, and those are the specific things that we are focused on today.
It's not our site's goal to be a completely free-speech platform. We want to be a safe platform and we want to be a platform that also protects privacy at the same time.
In other words, Pao isn't ruling out the idea that Reddit could heavily moderate comments, but won't give specifics on who or how.
Right now, Pao says that the team dealt with 20 to 30 harassment claims in the past ''half a week,'' and that Reddit is building tools to find and deal with repeat offenders using fake, so-called ''throwaway'' accounts.
It's understandable that Pao and the Reddit team want to provide a safer space without pissing off the base of users that have gotten it to its current 100-million-user strong peaks of success.
But if it's serious about fighting harassment, Reddit is going to have to go public with an enforceable set of specific rules, and soon, or else it's going to completely alienate both camps.
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Caliphate!
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Women rescued from Boko Haram now suspected of aiding the terrorist group
Thu, 21 May 2015 00:51
REUTERS/Afolabi SotundeWomen and children rescued from Boko Haram in Sambisa forest receive medical attention at the clinic of the Internally Displaced People camp in Yola, Adamawa State, Nigeria. May 3, 2015.
All 275 women, girls and children rescued from Boko Haram and taken to the safety of a northeast Nigerian refugee camp have been taken into military custody amid suspicions that some are aiding the Islamic extremists, a camp official and a Nigerian military intelligence officer said Wednesday.
They said soldiers on Tuesday took the group from Malkohi Camp to the airport at Yola city, where a military plane flew them to an unknown destination.
Spokesman Sani Datti of the National Emergency Management Agency, which manages the camp, said he was aware that soldiers removed the group but said he had no other information about an "entirely military affair."
The army spokesman for 23rd Armoured Brigade in Yola could not be immediately reached for comment.
An intelligence officer told The Associated Press the move followed fears that some women were communicating at night with Boko Haram. The camp official said the suspicions were voiced during trauma counseling sessions. Both requested anonymity because the affair is sensitive.
The group '-- which includes 67 women and girls and the rest young children '-- was brought to Malkohi on May 2.
They told The Associated Press heartrending stories of their captivity and the trauma of their rescue from a Sambisa Forest camp, where Boko Haram fighters stoned several of them to death. Others were crushed accidentally by a military armored car and three women died when a land mine exploded. All the rescued children were badly malnourished.
One young woman, Binta Ibrahim, told how at 16 she rescued three children aged between 2 and 4, cared for them during a year of captivity under Boko Haram and brought them to the safety of the refugee camp.
Ibrahim's humanity so moved U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power that she called her an inspiration at the commencement address for the University of Pennsylvania this week.
"Binta is a Muslim. The three kids she saved are Christian. Tell me a more powerful rejection of Boko Haram's perversion of Islam than Binta's love for those kids," she said.
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'Islam must be banned': French Mayor in trouble after extreme tweets, calls to deport Muslims
Tue, 19 May 2015 20:51
(C) Reuters / Jean-Paul Pelissier
A mayor of a French town has been suspended from former president Nikolas Sarkozy's UMP party after urging a ban on Islam in the country and the immediate "escorting to the border" of those practicing the religion."The Muslim religion must be banned in France," Robert Chardon, mayor of the southern town of Venelles, wrote on Twitter earlier this week.
All followers of Islam should be "immediately escorted to the border," the mayor added, forecasting that the Muslim faith will be banned in France by 2027.
The controversial tweet was made by Chardon as part of an online public discussion initiated by French ex-president and UMP (Union for a Popular Movement) leader, Nicolas Sarkozy, under the #NSDirect hashtag.
Sarkozy, who is likely to run for president once again in 2027, was quick to distance himself from the comments.
"I condemn this proposal even if secularism also means fixing limits. Rights and limits go together," he wrote.
The Venelles mayor was also slammed by Twitter followers, who on their part suggested "to ban idiocy in France" instead of Islam, Sputnik news agency reported."In France, everyone is free to choose whether or not to believe in God, and that's just fine!" one of the users reminded, while another wrote to Chardon that he was "glad not to live in your **** town!"
At first, it was suggested that the comments didn't come from the mayor as his account on Twitter was hacked.
But Chardon confirmed the authenticity of the tweet, and expressed eagerness to defend his position.
In his interview with Le Monde paper, said he stands firm in his belief that banning Islam and deporting all Muslims is"the only solution for most of France's problems."
Muslims should practice their religion "in their country of origin," Chardon said.
According to the mayor, the understandings of this idea came to him as an epiphany, while he was taking leave to get treatment from mouth cancer.
Union for a Popular Movement vice-president, Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, announced that party has suspended Chardon, who will be later removed from UMP's ranks.
"I have called for the expulsion procedure to be started for these absurd statements that in no way reflect the values and program of the UMP," Kosciusko-Morizet told AFP.
Racism and xenophobia against the country's five million Muslims have been on the rise in France, following series of terror attacks by Islamic radicals, including the deadly shooting at Charlie Hebdo satirical weekly in mid-January.
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NYPD Chief Wants 450 Cops to Combat ISIS | The Weekly Standard
Wed, 20 May 2015 19:22
New York City police chief Bill Bratton is worried about ISIS. So worried, in fact, that he's going to assign 450 New York Police Department cops to fight terrororism that may come from the Islamic State.
''We need to be very concerned about terrorism '... The significantly increased threat from ISIS using social media to recruit people not only to go to Syria to fight, but encouraging people '... to attack police, to attack government officials, to basically brainwash them under their screwed-up ideology. That threat has expanded significantly in the now 16 months I've been police commissioner,'' Bratton said on the John Catsimatidis radio show.
''We're treating that threat so seriously, I'm going to put another 450 police officers '' if we get the approval to increase the size of the police force '' and I need to do it very very quickly '' into our counterterrorism operations to increase the ability of our officers to protect critical sites around the city. Or, if we were to have an incident, so I'd have a lot more officers in the streets with the appropriate equipment to deal with active shooters or hostage situations.
''We are entering a new era where we cannot live in fear, but we have to live increasingly aware of our surroundings '... This crazy hijacking of the Muslim religion by these fanatics, twisting it into an ideology that's all about hate and murder and killing.''
Bratton said he'd work with the New York City mayor on getting the cops he needs to do the job. ''I'm making a case for a very specific number of officers to support the initiatives that the mayor has indicated he wants us to focus on: counter-terrorism, improved training, improved responsiveness and trust to the various minority communities, in particular, in the city. So, we have presented to him numbers that, I think, will deliver what he is indicating he is looking for,'' he said.
''Politics is the art of negotiation. I think there's going to be common ground that we'll hopefully get most of what we're looking for to implement the mayor's plans.''
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FPI Fact Sheet: The ISIS Threat to America | Foreign Policy Initiative
Wed, 20 May 2015 19:55
By Tzvi Kahn | May 18, 2015
May 18, 2015
The recent attack against the Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest in Garland, Texas, offers a troubling reminder that ISIS, also known as the Islamic State or ISIL, directly threatens the United States. The Foreign Policy Initiative (FPI) believes the following fact sheet will prove useful for policymakers and the general public to understand the nature and scale of the threat. For a separate FPI fact sheet that analyzes the history and ideology of ISIS, please click here. I. The ISIS Global Franchise ISIS is not a unitary organization with a single chain of command, but an international movement that attracts independent supporters throughout the world. As Jordan's King Abdullah II said in April 2015, ''In a way it's a franchise. '... The problem is they're international, and I don't think the international community realizes that they have to be dealt with internationally. So today we are focusing on'' ISIS, ''but at the same time in 2015 we have to have a holistic approach.''
ISIS' international supporters work to advance the group's cause without necessarily taking direct orders from its leaders. As James B. Comey, director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), said after the May 3, 2015, shooting attack in Texas, ''In a way, the old paradigm between 'inspired' and 'directed' breaks down here.'' ''It's not a useful framework,'' he added. ISIS offers prospective supporters two choices: Either join the group in Iraq and Syria or conduct attacks at home. In an audio recording released in May 2015, ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi urged Muslims to ''migrate to the Islamic State or fight in his land wherever that may be.'' The New York Times reported that ISIS released the recording ''with translations in English, French, German, Russian and Turkish, an unusual move suggesting that the group was hoping for maximum exposure.'' ISIS' aggressive and highly sophisticated social media campaign facilitates the group's global reach. ''They are shooting out into the ether-sphere '... over 90 thousand messages a day,'' said John Carlin, assistant attorney general for national security, in May 2015. He added: ''It's to millions of people across the globe. And what they're trying to do is convince young people to go over and ultimately slaughter civilians in a vicious war.'' Thanks in part to ISIS' recruitment efforts, foreign fighters now comprise the majority of the group's forces in Iraq and Syria. According to Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, ISIS now retains 20,000 foreign fighters'--including 3,400 Westerners and 180 Americans'--out of a total force of some 31,000. ISIS believes that its efforts will ultimately lead to the creation of a global caliphate. As ISIS spokesman Abu Muhammad Al-'Adnani said in March 2015, ''We want, Allah willing, Paris before Rome and before Al-Andalus, [and] after that we will blacken your life and blow up your White House, Big Ben, and the Eiffel Tower, Allah willing ... We want Kabul, Karachi, the Caucasus, Qom, Riyadh, and Tehran. We want Baghdad, Damascus, Jerusalem, Cairo, Sana', Doha, Abu Dhabi, and Amman. And Muslims shall return to ruling and leadership everywhere.'' II. ISIS' American Franchise The FBI is investigating suspected ISIS supporters in all 50 states. ''This isn't a New York phenomenon or a Washington phenomenon,'' said FBI Director James B. Comey in February 2015. ''This is all 50 states and in ways that are very hard to see.'' In May 2015, Comey noted: ''The haystack is the entire country. We are looking for the needles, but increasingly the needles are unavailable to us.''
ISIS' leadership explicitly encourages lone wolf attacks. In congressional testimony in February 2015, Michael Steinbach, assistant director of the FBI, cited one recent example of a video ISIS released via social media that reiterates ''the group's support of lone offender attacks in Western countries. This video specifically advocates for attacks against soldiers, law enforcement, and intelligence members.'' ISIS' reliance on social media for the recruitment of Americans makes potential sympathizers extremely difficult to track. ''Because of the use of the Internet, we could have little or no notice in advance of an independent actor attempting to strike,'' Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said in May 2015. Nicholas J. Rasmussen, director of the National Counterterrorism Center, said in February 2015 congressional testimony that the home-grown violent extremists cultivated by ISIS on U.S. soil ''can potentially operate undetected and '... can plan and execute a simple attack without providing us warning.'' The recent shooting attack in Texas against a Prophet Muhammad cartoon contest marks the first successful attack in the United States that ISIS has claimed as its own. As Defense Secretary Ashton Carter put it, ''it's concerning that there are individuals like this who draw their inspiration from ISIL, and finally, it's yet another reason why the defeat of ISIL is important. '... It has this larger meaning because of the ability of a movement like this to inspire a certain sort of person.'' Over the past year, law enforcement officials have arrested multiple ISIS-inspired extremists plotting to attack the U.S. homeland. The FBI has charged, among others, an Ohio man for planning to attack the U.S. Capitol Building; two Illinois men seeking to attack a U.S. military facility; a Kansas man for attempting to detonate a bomb at a U.S. military base in that state; a New York man for plotting to kill U.S. soldiers who had returned from Iraq; and another New York man for offering to slay the President of the United States if ISIS so ordered. The bureau has also said that a New York man's hatchet attack last year on a group of four NYPD officers in Queens constitutes an act of terror inspired in part by ISIS. Pro-ISIS groups have waged cyberattacks on the United States. In perhaps the most dramatic case, in January 2015, a pro-ISIS group known as the Cyber Caliphate hacked the Twitter and YouTube accounts of U.S. Central Command. In February 2015, the Cyber Caliphate hacked the Twitter accounts of Newsweek and the veterans' group Military Spouses of Strength, the website of the International Business Times, and the breaking news system of a Maryland television system. ''We observe all the movements that you are doing from your devices,'' another pro-ISIS group stated in a video released in May 2015. ''Soon you will see how we control your electronic world." Over the past year, law enforcement officials have arrested numerous Americans planning to travel to Syria to join ISIS. To date, the FBI has brought charges against Americans seeking to travel to Syria from multiple states, including North Carolina, New York, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and California, among others. Adm. Mike Rogers, director of the National Security Agency, said in May 2015 that the ideology of ISIS is ''increasingly resonating'' with Americans. III. ISIS' Threats of Mass Destruction ISIS seeks to execute massive terror attacks that would devastate American lives and infrastructure. Ahmad Rashidi, a former prisoner of ISIS who escaped to Turkey, told Meet the Press that ISIS is ''happy'' about the U.S. bombing campaign in Iraq and Syria because it makes the group seem as important as al-Qaeda, which ISIS seeks to surpass in brutality. ''They want to be more better [sic] than al-Qaeda,'' Rashidi said. ''They want to do something more better than the World Trade Center.''
ISIS has threatened to repeat the attacks of September 11, 2001. In an April 2015 video titled ''We Will Burn America'' that includes footage of the World Trade Center's destruction, ISIS threatened to ''burn [the] United States again.'' ''America thinks it's safe because of the geographical location,'' the video stated. ''Thus you see it invades the Muslim lands, and it thinks that the army of the Jihad won't reach in their lands. But the dream of the American to have safety became a mirage. Today there is no safety for any American on the globe.'' The former deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has warned that ISIS seeks to commit a 9/11-like attack. "If we don't get ISIS under control," said Michael Morell, who also twice served as the CIA's acting director following the departures of Leon Panetta and David Petraeus, "we're going to see that kind of attack." "They have announced their intentions,'' Morell further wrote in Time, ''just like bin Laden did in the years prior to 9/11.'' ISIS has researched the use of weapons of mass destruction against the West. According to a report in Foreign Policy last year, Syrian rebels recovered a laptop from ISIS that included a document explaining how to develop biological weapons. ''The advantage of biological weapons is that they do not cost a lot of money, while the human casualties can be huge,'' the document stated. The computer also contained a fatwa from a Saudi cleric justifying their use. ''If Muslims cannot defeat the kafir [unbelievers] in a different way,'' the fatwa said, ''it is permissible to use weapons of mass destruction. Even if it kills all of them and wipes them and their descendants off the face of the Earth.''
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Saudi Arabia performs 84th beheading in 2015 '-- RT News
Wed, 20 May 2015 19:36
Published time: May 17, 2015 17:39Edited time: May 19, 2015 06:28Reuters / Andrew Biraj
A Pakistani national sentenced to death for drug smuggling has been decapitated in Saudi Arabia, AFP reports. This brings the number of executions since the start of the year to 84 '' almost as much as for the whole of 2014.
Iftikhar Ahmed Mohammed Anayat was found guilty of attempting to bring heroin into the Gulf kingdom in balloons concealed in his stomach.
The man was beheaded in the Red Sea city of Jeddah on Sunday, the agency reported, referencing the Saudi Interior Ministry.
The death penalty was carried out a day after an execution of an Indonesian maid, Karni Bt. Medi Tarsim, who was indicted on murdering her employer's 4-year-old child.
Earlier this week, another Indonesian domestic worker, Siti Zainab, was beheaded, despite claims that the woman was mentally ill.
Since King Salman ascended to the Saudi throne, after the death of his predecessor King Abdullah on January 15, 2015, executions, including those of foreign nationals, in the country have stepped up, raising concern in the international community.
READ MORE: Beheading of 5 foreigners in Saudi Arabia triggers outcry from human rights campaigners
Drug trafficking, rape, murder, apostasy and armed robbery are all punishable by death under the strict Sharia law practiced in Saudi Arabia.
The Saudi authorities explained that the beheadings are needed to show the country's commitment to ''maintaining security and realizing justice'' as well as deter people from criminal acts.
For this reason, the executions are often carried out in public places.
In January, a video of an execution was leaked online, showing a woman's head severed from her body in the middle of a road.
The Saudi officials commented on the incident by saying that the only violation during the act was its illegal filming. The man responsible for making the video was arrested and is awaiting trial, they told CNN.
Saudi Arabia's judicial system is harshly criticized by human rights watchdogs, with Amnesty International ranking the monarchy among the world's top three executioners.
87 people were beheaded in the country in 2014, with half of the executions carried out for non-lethal offenses, Amnesty International said.
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Centers for Disease Control maps 'most distinctive' causes of death by state -- Health & Wellness -- Sott.net
Wed, 20 May 2015 20:05
(C) CDC
Heart disease and cancer can be easily branded as the two most notorious and common killers in the United States. However, there are other causes of death which are less common with the nation as a whole but are actually much more typical in specific states.A new color-coded map has been created by the CDC in order to categorize the most likely causes of death for each of the 50 U.S. states.
According to Francis Boscoe, a research scientist at New York State Cancer Registry the most distinctive causes of death in majority of cases is not so surprising. In several northern states, including Maine, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming the flu is considered as the most distinctive cause of death. In Alaska and Idaho the most distinctive causes of death is considered to be plane crashes or boat accidents. In mining states such as Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Kentucky pneumoconiosis, a group of lung diseases caused by inhaling dusts, are branded as the most distinctive causes of death.
There were however, some unexpected findings. In New Jersey, Sepsis is categorized as the most distinctive cause of death and deaths by legal intervention. Surprisingly the most distinctive cause of death in New Mexico, Nevada and Oregon is that caused by law enforcement officers, excluding legal executions.
In order to determine the most distinctive causes of death for each individual state, the researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention initiated a list of 113 causes of death.
Then, the researchers began determining the estimate of death from each cause, for each state and divided this by the rate of death from that particular cause in the United States as a whole. This theory allowed the researchers to observe which of the states had higher rates of death from certain causes than the rest of the United States.
In Alaska, for instance the rate of death for plane crashes and boat accidents was about 4 deaths per 100,000 people; whereas the national rate is 0.6 deaths per 100,000 people. This essentially proves beyond reasonable doubt that deaths from plane crashes or boat accidents are seven times more likely in Alaska than entire United States. According to Boscoe, this "distinctive" cause of death makes sense, since some parts of Alaska are accessible only by boat or plane.
In Florida, HIV was identified as the most distinctive cause of death, where about 15,000 people died from the disease. But in numerous cases, the most distinctive cause of death was still quite uncommon. Although Syphilis caused only 22 deaths in Louisiana, it is considered as the most distinctive cause of death in that particular state.
(C) CDC
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Islamic State Expands to Malaysia, Infiltrates Military | Washington Free Beacon
Thu, 21 May 2015 02:51
In this undated file image posted on Monday, June 30, 2014, by the Raqqa Media Center of the Islamic State group, a Syrian opposition group, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, fighters from the Islamic State group parade in Raqqa, north Syria / AP
BY:Bill GertzMay 20, 2015 5:00 am
The Islamic State terror group is expanding operations in Southeast Asia where in Malaysia more than 100 Islamists, including some linked to the military, have been arrested in recent weeks, according to a State Department security report.
''Malaysian authorities have now arrested more than 100 individuals linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), including over 30 suspects in March and April alone,'' says a May 19 report by the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC), a government group that promotes partnership between the State Department and the private sector. The Islamic State terrorist organization is known by three acronyms: IS, ISIS, and ISIL.
The seven-page internal report produced for U.S. corporations abroad is the latest indication that the Obama administration's strategy against Islamic State is failing. The president has limited U.S. military operations in Syria and Iraq to airstrikes and training for local forces that appear to be struggling in efforts to counter IS forces.
Despite President Obama's vow to strike IS on the level of strategic messaging, the administration has failed to conduct a counter-ideological campaign against the group due to what critics say is the influence within government of Islamist sympathizers who have blocked aggressive information campaigns against the extremists.
This week, the Iraqi city of Ramadi fell to IS militants, a victory that the Pentagon sought to deemphasize. IS has begun mass executions in Ramadi, according to reports from the region.
In addition to Malaysia, IS has expanded its operations to North Africa, including Libya, and to Afghanistan.
A recent worrying indicator was the discovery last month of an IS cell in Malaysia. The group had acquired 40 kilograms of explosives it intended to use in terrorist bombing attacks.
''The good news is that Malaysian authorities have proven successful at disrupting cells early, before they become fully operational,'' the report said. ''The bad news, however, is that radicalization continues to find a foothold in Malaysia.''
An even more troubling sign, according to the report, was the discovery that two people arrested in early April were members of the Royal Malaysian Air Force. The arrests raise ''concern that ISIL has supporters within the country's armed forces,'' the report said.
Last month Malaysian officials disclosed that some 70 army soldiers were linked to the Islamic State, although it is not clear whether they were sympathizers or operational jihadists.
The report said the Malaysian government is tracking the effort to infiltrate its armed forces and attempting to stop it.
''Governments of countries in which extremist ideology may have infiltrated the military can ill afford to discount the possibility of insider threat,'' the report said.
Malaysia is an emerging U.S. ally in the Obama administration's policy shift to Asia and is expected to increase military cooperation with U.S. forces.
The most recent disrupted plot in Malaysia's central province of Selangor led to the arrest of 11 people on April 26. The suspects had been testing homemade bombs that were to be used against government buildings and police stations throughout the country.
''Although the cell had not yet demonstrated its capability to conduct a large-scale attack, the significant cache of ammonium nitrate and potassium nitrate recovered by authorities suggests one of the most developed plots by Malaysian militants to date,'' the report said.
Other Islamist plots were uncovered on April 5, when authorities arrested 17 people for a plot to hit strategic targets in Kuala Lumpur, and on March 26 when two Iraqis were caught planning to blow up embassies of Qatar and Saudi Arabia in the capital.
Those arrested in recent raids range from radicalized teenagers influenced by online jihadist postings to veteran militants who have fought in the Middle East.
''Each of these distinct demographics may pose a unique threat based on its knowledge, skills, and experience,'' the report said.
Up to 105 Malaysians have traveled to Syria, and a small number have returned to the Southeast Asia nation of 30 million people. Ten Malaysians have been killed in the Syrian civil war.
By contrast, neighboring Indonesia has some 500 Islamists fighting in Syria out of a population of 250 million.
Once the conflict ends, those fighters are expected to return to their home countries and continuing waging jihad against their governments.
According to the OSAC report, the leader of an IS cell that was plotting attacks in Malaysia, Murad Halimmuddin Hassan, is believed to have undergone militant training in Syria last year. A second terrorist, an Islamist cleric, traveled to Syria in September to join IS and returned to Malaysia in December.
''Foreign fighters often pose an elevated threat due to the tactical proficiency, ideological fervor, and transnational networks they develop abroad,'' the report said. ''The legitimacy derived from having directly engaged in combat can also transform them from individual threats to force multipliers if they are capable of mobilizing aspiring militants radicalized at home.''
Jihadists in Southeast Asia include former members of groups engaged in regional conflicts, including the Kumpulan Militan Malaysia (KMM) and Jemaah Islamiyah, two insurgent organizations.
Malaysia's geography'--it is a tropical archipelago and peninsula'--has made it a relatively easy country for terrorists to travel freely in, something that has facilitated cross-border terror attacks in Philippines and Indonesia.
The objective of the Islamic State terrorists in Malaysia is to topple the government.
''While such a prospect may be highly untenable, attacks on logistical and ideological targets are plausible and would have a significant impact on the U.S. private sector,'' the report said.
Terrorists in the country appear to be targeting banks for robberies to fund operations, and also may engage in kidnapping and ransom plots.
Attack targets may include police and army facilities, which could yield weapons for the group's future operations.
Ideological targets include government buildings and Western establishments such as pubs, discos, and bars.
''Although no U.S. private-sector targets were named in recent raids, such was the case last year, when Malaysian authorities arrested 19 suspects whose plans included the bombing of a Carlsberg brewery,'' the report said.
Malaysian authorities involved in counterterrorism operations against IS include the police Counterterrorism Division (E8) of the Special
Branch, which has successfully broken up the recent plots.
The report warned that despite counterterrorism efforts, ''Islamist extremism continues to find a foothold in Malaysia.''
Local politics in the country also could facilitate a resurgent Islamicization and risks ''creating an environment conducive to Islamic radicalization,'' the report said.
''Thus while the government of Malaysia may be fully committed to and capable of interdicting plots before the point of attack, their tolerance of a more fundamentalist brand of Islam may unintentionally facilitate their foundation,'' OSAC said.
Malaysia's Home Ministry said 154 Malaysians are known to have been associated in IS and 91 have been arrested in the country, the Malay Mail Online reported Tuesday. Others have been killed or remain at large.
''This situation is very worrying to the government as it involves children. Hence, the government's move in tabling the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) 2015 is very apt,'' the Malaysian Home Ministry stated, referring to a controversial counter-terrorism law.
Rohan Gunaratna, a counterterrorism expert at Singapore's International Center for Political Violence and Terrorism Research, said during a conference in March that the Islamic State is stepping up operations in the region. So far, 22 terrorist groups in Southeast Asia have joined IS and are supporting the group, mainly in online.
''As ISIS loses territory, it will become more insurgent, hit-and-run, and terrorist in nature, and its influence will spread overseas,'' he told the Straits Times newspaper.
''The world must brace itself for a new wave of terrorist strikes, both on the scale we have witnessed in Sydney, Copenhagen, Paris and Ottawa recently, and also ISIS-directed attacks that may even mirror the scale of 9/11.''
On the fall of Iraq's Ramadi, Pentagon spokesman Col. Steve Warren told reporters on Monday not ''to read too much into this.''
''What this means for our strategy is simply that we'--the coalition and Iraqi partners'--now have to go back and retake Ramadi,'' Warren said.
Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Thomas D. Weidley, chief of staff of the Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve, told reporters last week that coalition forces conducted around 420 airstrikes near Ramadi and Fallujah, 165 within the past month against buildings and vehicles.
The military strikes, combined with Iraqi ground forces operations, have weakened IS, he said.
''You can take a look at how Daesh operated last summer to how they're operating today, it's significantly different,'' Weidley said using yet another acronym for IS. ''And that speaks to the degradation that Daesh has undergone over the last eight or nine months.''
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F-Russia
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Victoria 'f*ck the EU' Nuland to discuss implementation of Minsk accords in Moscow
Mon, 18 May 2015 13:01
(C) ITAR-TASS/ Maxim Nikitin
U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland will visit Moscow on May 17-18 to discuss with Russia's representatives the implementation of the Minsk agreements, says a statement released by the U.S. Department of State on Saturday.Nuland is expected to meet with senior Russian government officials to discuss the next steps aimed at implementing the Minsk agreements following her visit to Kiev on May 14-16 and also the meetings held by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Sochi.
She will also discuss bilateral issues with Russian officials and meet with civil society representatives, the U.S. Department of State says.
Earlier this week, Nuland traveled to Kiev, where she held meetings with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk and President Pyotr Poroshenko. "Coordinating our actions with the United States is vitally important," Poroshenko said following talks.
After a visit to Kiev, Nuland said Washington was willing to expand its participation in ensuring the implementation of the Minsk agreements, together with the EU and the "Normandy Four" countries. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov has told TASS that the United States is showing interest not only in the "Normandy Four" format, but also in the Contact Group on Ukraine. However, the Russian Foreign Ministry sees no point in that.
The forthcoming visit will be the second trip of a senior U.S. diplomat to Russia in a week. On May 12, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry held talks with Russia's top diplomat Sergey Lavrov in Sochi and was later received by Russian President Vladimir Putin. "The two sides exchanged views on virtually all key issues of present-day international agenda," Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov said following talks. "Of course, the Ukrainian issue was high on the agenda," he noted.
Another Ukrainian PM calls for regime change in Kiev
Tue, 19 May 2015 20:55
(C) AP Photo / Efrem Lukatsky
If the government fails to tackle the problems confronting Ukraine, it needs to be replaced, a battalion commander-turned-MP warned in televised comments Friday."Unfortunately, I haven't seen any real changes happening here since August of last year, where it comes to our national security, defense or economics," Semen Semenchenko, the ex-commander of the Donbass voluntary battalion and now a Verkhovna Rada deputy, said during the Shuster Live talk show aired on Friday.
If the state fails to perform its constitutional duties then "it's time for the people to join in the process of governance," Semenchenko said.
If the powers-that-be prove unable to change anything, the Ukrainians should not "feel depressed" but move quickly to change the government, the MP warned, adding that the "reset" should last until there was a "sufficient number of adequate and open-minded people" running the country.
According to Semen Semenchenko's interview to Ukrainian ICTV television channel in 2014, his real name is Konstantin Grishin. Born in Sevastopol, Konstantin, who is ethnically Russian, moved to Donetsk where he became notorious for a series of shady dealings as the owner of a satellite television firm.
In the early 2000s Crimean police put him on their wanted list for committing a serious crime.
Grishin was never arrested and eventually cropped up in Kiev where he became actively involved in the 2014 Maidan coup.Shortly after the outbreak of the war in eastern Ukraine, he organized the Donbass voluntary battalion which he led in combat against the pro-independence militia in the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics.
Semenchenko made his entry into national politics prior to the 2014 Ukrainian parliamentary election. Appearing second on the party list of Samopomich, he was elected to the Verkhovna Rada.
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NATO Uses Clashes in Macedonia to Undermine Russia's Gas Pipeline Project / Sputnik International
Wed, 20 May 2015 19:01
Opinion15:27 12.05.2015Get short URL
MOSCOW (Sputnik) '-- On May 9, Macedonia witnessed violent clashes between police and an armed group in Kumanovo, a city bordering Serbia and Kosovo, which claimed the lives of eight Macedonian security officers and 14 gunmen.According to the Macedonian Interior Ministry, the group was led by five former members of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA).
"Albanians are used to hinder [the implementation of] the Turkish Stream [project] and as a US method of putting pressure on Europe by fomenting a new conflict in the Balkans," Dusan Prorokovic told Sputnik Tuesday.
According to Prorokovic, renewed Albanian insurgency in Kumanovo is likely to be orchestrated by the United States and its NATO allies to derail Moscow's pipeline plans.
The new pipeline is expected to pass through Turkey to a gas hub on the Turkish-Greek border for further distribution to consumers in southern Europe.Kumanovo was an epicenter of fighting between Albanian rebels, who originated from Kosovo, and government forces in 2001.
In April, a group of some 40 gunmen, reportedly linked to the KLA, took over a police station in the northern Macedonian village of Gosince. The armed men called for the establishment of an Albanian state.
About a quarter of Macedonia's two-million population is made up of ethnic Albanians. Relations between Macedonians and the Albanian minority soured after the government suppressed Albanian insurgency in Tetovo, near the border with Kosovo in 2001.
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Russia stops transit of NATO military cargo to Afghanistan through its territory
Wed, 20 May 2015 20:00
(C) AFP
Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev has revoked a decree that allowed delivery of NATO military equipment to Afghanistan through Russian territory.According to the official document, signed by Medvedev and published on Monday, all previous decisions on NATO cargo transit to Afghanistan have now been revoked. This includes an act allowing delivery of military hardware and equipment via rail, motor vehicles, or through Russian airspace.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has been ordered to inform all the countries involved.
Transit of military cargo to Afghanistan through Russia was permitted after a 2001 UN Security Council resolution. The document established an International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, and called on all countries to support the NATO-led security mission. In 2008 Russia signed a decree allowing ISAF cargo to pass through its territory.
In 2014, Washington announced that the military operation in Afghanistan was over. The US-led coalition has pulled out most of its forces and the Afghan military has assumed full responsibility for national security. However, while the 2001 resolution has been terminated, some 13,000 ISAF troops will remain in Afghanistan until the end of 2016 to oversee local forces and provide training on counter-terror operations.
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Ottomanaia
$7bn-Russia Turkey and the New Greek Sirtaki | New Eastern Outlook
Thu, 21 May 2015 01:40
The European Union has an uncanny knack for shooting itself in the foot these days. Under strong pressure from a Russo-phobic Washington administration and various Russo-phobic EU governments, Brussels last year decided to take steps to block the bilateral agreements between Russia's state Gazprom and EU countries such as Greece and Bulgaria to buy gas from a new Russian pipeline that was to have been called South Stream, the southern counterpart to the Gazprom-Germany North Stream line.
For the neoconservatives in the Obama State Department and Pentagon, that would have forged far too strong EU-Russia economic ties that would significantly weaken America's ability to blackmail the EU. The EU Commission is brazenly violating all legal precepts by trying to enforce, retroactively, new laws that they claim Gazprom has violated. Further they forced the weak government of Bulgaria last year to back out of their Gazprom contract.
Washington's Russo-phobes were gloating as they fantasized about getting a nuclear deal with Russia's ally Iran that could woo Teheran to double-cross Moscow and sell Iranian gas from South Pars, the world's largest gas field, via another pipeline through to Iran's city of Bazargan at the border with Turkey where it would transit Turkey on to Greece and Italy.
Unlike the failed US Nabucco gas project which lacked gas, the Persian Pipeline, were Iran to be foolish enough to let Washington control it, would have gas, lots of it to weaken Russia's hold on EU gas markets that were previously supplied via Gazprom via older Ukraine pipelines.
Putin calls EU bluff
As we noted at the time last December, Russian President Vladimir Putin caught the EU by surprise when he announced cancellation of the South Stream Gazprom EU project during a visit in Turkey with President Erdogan. There Putin proposed instead an alternative that would pipe Russia's gas through Turkey to the door of EU member Greece. There different EU states could ''take it or leave it.'' The advantage for Gazprom and Russia is that they would not be responsible for construction of the needed EU pipelines.
When he announced the decision, he stated bluntly, ''If Europe doesn't want to realize this, then it means it won't be realized. We will redirect the flow of our energy resources to other regions of the world. We couldn't get necessary permissions from Bulgaria, so we cannot continue with the project. We can't make all the investment just to be stopped at the Bulgarian border. Of course, this is the choice of our friends in Europe.'' South Stream would have provided secure delivery to southern EU countries including Bulgaria, Hungary, Austria, Italy, Croatia and also Serbia. It would avoid the current transit pipelines running through Ukraine.
Now less than six months later Russia and Turkey have completed the landmark deal to begin deliveries of Gazprom Russian gas via a new ''Turkish Stream'' pipeline into and across Turkey through a pipeline now in construction. Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller announced on May 7 that, ''An agreement has been made on the beginning of exploitation and deliveries of [Russian] gas along the Turkish Stream in December 2016.'' The statement came following Miller's meeting earlier in the day with Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister Taner Yıldız. The new pipeline will travel through Turkey to a gas hub on the Turkish-Greek border for further distribution to European customers.
A geopolitical cherry on top
And only minutes after the successful Russia-Turkish agreement, Putin, reported to be a master chess player, made a master geopolitical chess move into the European Union disaster that is called the Eurozone.
Greek news outlet, Capital.gr, reported that the very same day Miller's Turkey Gazprom deal was finalized, Putin had an apparently very cordial phone chat with Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras. After the talk, Putin's office released a statement that Putin had told Tsipras that Russia would be willing to extend money to Greece in return for Greek participation in the Turkish Stream project into the EU. The Kremlin statement said, ''In that context, the Russian side confirmed its willingness to consider the issue of extending financing to state and private companies that will cooperate in the project.''
In Tsipras' April 8 meeting with Putin Russia denied it had made a deal on energy; that all changed on May 7 after Turkey finalized Turkish Stream
After Tsipras' talks with Putin in Moscow on April 8, the Kremlin spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, issued a denial of Der Spiegel reports that the two had come to an agreement in which Moscow would advance the cash-desperate Greek government with an immediate '‚¬5 billion cash advance from Russia based on expected future profits linked to the pipeline. The Greek energy minister said at the time that Athens would repay Moscow after 2019, when the pipeline is expected to start operating.
That was on April 8. Flash forward to May 7 and the finalization of the Russia-Turkish Stream deal, and it seems now that there is also a Russia-Greece deal to advance Athens the sizeable cash sum, just before Athens must come up with large sums to repay IMF and EU loans in order to get more senseless EU and ECB ''support.'' The difference was clearly the finalization of the Turkish Stream. Now EU bureaucrats in Brussels have new gas pains as Putin puts a Greek cherry atop Moscow's Turkish geopolitical deal on gas.
If the Russia cash advance to Tsipras comes to pass, not only will Athens be able to dance a Sirtaki. This time it will be a dance in which the role of Zorba is played by a Russian, Vladimir Putin, not the Mexican, Anthony Quinn.
Wolfgang Scha¼ble, Angela Merkel, EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker all will have three options. They can decide to stand on the sidelines and clap to the sensuous rhythms of the new Sirtaki. They can join in the dance by refusing Washington blackmail on renewing EU economic sanctions against Russia. Or they can go on to boycott the dance and sink deeper into a new crisis of the Euro.
The ongoing panic selloff in German bond markets over recent days suggests it might be wise for the Berlin government to consider an entire new choreography for its European Grand Strategy. The old Atlantic NATO dance is rapidly becoming a Danse Macabre for Germany and for Europe. Putin's Sirtaki would be far more fun for Europe and the world.
F. William Engdahl is strategic risk consultant and lecturer, he holds a degree in politics from Princeton University and is a best-selling author on oil and geopolitics, exclusively for the online magazine ''New Eastern Outlook''.
SpaceWars
Text of H.R. 1508: Space Resource Exploration and Utilization Act of 2015 (Introduced version) - GovTrack.us
Thu, 21 May 2015 01:29
H. R. 1508
(for himself and ) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
To promote the development of a United States commercial space resource exploration and utilization industry and to increase the exploration and utilization of resources in outer space.
This Act may be cited as the Space Resource Exploration and Utilization Act of 2015.
Subtitle V of title 51, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new chapter:
513Sec.
51301. Definitions.
51302. Commercialization of space resource exploration and utilization.
51303. Legal framework.
51301.In this chapter:
(1)The term space resource means a natural resource of any kind found in situ in outer space.
(2)The term asteroid resource means a space resource found on or within an asteroid.
(3)The term State means any of the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and any other commonwealth, territory, or possession of the United States.
(4)The term United States commercial space resource utilization entity means an entity providing space resource exploration or utilization services, the control of which is held by persons other than a Federal, State, local, or foreign government, and that is'--
(A)duly organized under the laws of a State;
(B)subject to the subject matter and personal jurisdiction of the courts of the United States; or
(C)a foreign entity that has voluntarily submitted to the subject matter and personal jurisdiction of the courts of the United States.
51302.(a)The President, acting through appropriate Federal agencies, shall'--
(1)facilitate the commercial exploration and utilization of space resources to meet national needs;
(2)discourage government barriers to the development of economically viable, safe, and stable industries for the exploration and utilization of space resources in manners consistent with the existing international obligations of the United States; and
(3)promote the right of United States commercial entities to explore outer space and utilize space resources, in accordance with the existing international obligations of the United States, free from harmful interference, and to transfer or sell such resources.
(b)Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this section, the President shall submit to Congress a report that contains recommendations for'--
(1)the allocation of responsibilities relating to the exploration and utilization of space resources among Federal agencies; and
(2)any authorities necessary to meet the international obligations of the United States with respect to the exploration and utilization of space resources.
51303.(a)Any asteroid resources obtained in outer space are the property of the entity that obtained such resources, which shall be entitled to all property rights thereto, consistent with applicable provisions of Federal law.
(b)A United States commercial space resource utilization entity shall avoid causing harmful interference in outer space.
(c)A United States commercial space resource utilization entity may bring a civil action for appropriate legal or equitable relief, or both, under this chapter for any action by another entity subject to United States jurisdiction causing harmful interference to its operations with respect to an asteroid resource utilization activity in outer space.
(d)In a civil action brought pursuant to subsection (c) with respect to an asteroid resource utilization activity in outer space, a court shall enter judgment in favor of the plaintiff if the court finds'--
(1)the plaintiff'--
(A)acted in accordance with all existing international obligations of the United States; and
(B)was first in time to conduct the activity; and
(2)the activity is reasonable for the exploration and utilization of asteroid resources.
(e)The district courts of the United States shall have original jurisdiction over an action under this chapter without regard to the amount in controversy.
The table of chapters for title 51, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end of the items for subtitle V the following:
513.51301
Congress Should Fix Space Property Rights Bill - TechFreedom
Thu, 21 May 2015 01:28
WASHINGTON D.C. '-- The House of Representatives is set to vote Thursday on legislation that would recognize space property rights for the first time under Federal law. H.R. 1508, the Space Resource Exploration and Utilization Act, would recognize ownership of resources extracted from asteroids, and ensure that all parties are able to operate in space free of harmful interference.
Today, Berin Szoka, President of TechFreedom, and James Dunstan, Principal at Mobius Legal Group, sent a letter to ranking members of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee urging them to amend the bill to ensure both that it is fully consistent with the Outer Space Treaty, and that it covers space resources extracted from the Moon, planets, comets and other bodies.
The letter opens:
The technologies needed to open the space frontier to sustainable settlement will never be developed, let alone deployed, unless investors know that they have enforceable rights to the fruits of their investments and the ability to operate peacefully without interference. Without effective property rights, the vast resources of the moons, planets and asteroids of our Solar System will benefit no one.
''Centuries of common law could be based on this space property rights bill, yet this bill hasn't even had a hearing,'' objected Berin Szoka, president of TechFreedom. ''Space property rights are too important to rush. Any legislation should protect all space resource utilization: not only on asteroids but also on moons, planets, comets, and other space resources. It should also at least lay the foundations for developing effective mechanisms for resolving disputes between U.S. companies and foreign parties.''
''The United States can, and should, lead the way in establishing effective outer space property rights,'' said James Dunstan, Principal at Mobius Legal Group and a TechFreedom adjunct fellow. ''But it must do so consistent with the requirements of the existing international treaty regime. Although that regime was forged at the height of the Cold War, it nonetheless provides the legal building blocks for a workable system of property rights that can enable utilization of the vast resources of outer space. The U.S. and U.S.S.R. established the principle that, once moved, space resources may be owned. Congress simply needs to codify this principle.''
''Similarly, the 1967 Outer Space Treaty already secures the right to explore and use space without harmful interference '-- a right the bill would finally make enforceable,'' concluded Szoka. ''But that right must be balanced against other rights created by the Treaty, including to 'free access to all areas of celestial bodies.' Failing to balance these rights adequately could create overly expansive 'bright line' zones that could amount to land grabs strictly prohibited by the Treaty.''
Szoka and Dunstan can be reached for comment at media@techfreedom.org. Both are long-time space lawyers; Dunstan has practiced space law for over thirty years. See more of their work on space property rights, including:
''Space Property Rights, the Next Frontier in Bipartisan Legislation?,'' a statement from TechFreedom''Space Property Rights: It's Time, and Here's Where to Start,'' an op-ed by Berin Szoka in Space News''How the U.S. Can Lead the Way to Extraterrestrial Land Deals,'' an op-ed by Berin Szoka and James Dunstan in Wired''Space Law: Is Asteroid Mining Legal?,'' an op-ed by Berin Szoka and James Dunstan in WiredAbout TechFreedom:
TechFreedom is a non-profit, non-partisan technology policy think tank. We work to chart a path forward for policymakers towards a bright future where technology enhances freedom, and freedom enhances technology.
Hillary 2016
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Yoko Ono: ''I Had an Affair with Hillary Clinton in the '70s'' World News Daily Report
Mon, 18 May 2015 01:09
Los Angeles | Yoko Ono shocked reporters yesterday when she responded to a question concerning the presidential run of Hillary Clinton and the possibility that she could become the first woman President of the United States in American history.
The artist and widow of John Lennon, who is in Los Angeles to present a collection of cups and saucers she is exhibiting at the Museum of Modern Art, totally took reporters by surprise by admitting she had not only met the former First Lady at various times during a series of protests against the Vietnam War in New York in the 1970s but also knew her ''intimately''.
The celebrity admitted laughingly to having ''a fling'' with her at the time and acknowledged her election ''would be a great advancement for LGBT and Women rights in America'' she added.
Hillary Clinton has been hit by a series of allegations of being a lesbian in her career which could ruin her bid for the presidency, believe some experts
Yoko Ono when asked about her thoughts about Hillary's run for the presidency completely took reporters by surprise.
''We met many times during the New York Vietnam War protests in the 1970s, and became very intimate. We shared many of the same values about sexual equality, fighting against the authoritarian, patriarchal, male-dominated society we were raised in'' she explained.
''We had a brief romantic fling when I lived with John in Manhattan and Hillary was studying at Yale, but eventually we lost touch. I am amazed how things are going well for her and wish her the best for her campaign'' she told reporters during the press conference.
Experts believe the statement could affect the presidential candidates bid for the presidency but previous allegations of Hillary Clinton's lesbian past have not seemed to play against the front runner for the 2016 Democratic presidential race yet.
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Britain hid secret MI6 plan to break up Libya from US, Hillary Clinton told by confidante - Telegraph
Tue, 19 May 2015 18:17
The memo warned that British diplomats and MI6 officers were maintaining secret back channels with the Gaddafi regime "in an effort to protect the British position in the event that the rebellion settles into a stalemate".
Muammar Gaddafi / Photo: REUTERS
Mr Blumenthal claimed that MI6 spies were in discussions with Saif Gaddafi, the dictator's son, "regarding future relations between the two countries if he takes over power from his father and implements reforms".
The memo also claims that the Libyan rebels were deeply suspicious of Britain and suspected that the UK would be "satisfied with a stalemate" in which Gaddafi or his family stayed in power in part of the country.
Their suspicions were stoked when Gaddafi's foreign minister, Moussa Koussa, defected to Britain in March 2011, Mr Blumenthal claimed. The rebels apparently saw the defection as evidence that Britain had secret lines of communication with the highest ranks of the Gaddafi regime.
Extract from the email:
Eight minutes after receiving Mr Blumenthal's email, Mrs Clinton forwarded it on to one of her most senior aides. She did not comment on the allegations about Britain. A week later, she met with William Hague, the then-foreign secretary at a Nato summit in Berlin.
Perhaps unbeknownst to Mr Blumenthal, who was working for Bill Clinton's global charity at the time and not privy to classified information, the CIA was maintaining its own back channels to Gaddafi.
Michael Morell, the CIA's deputy director, spoke regularly to Abdullah Senussi, the head of Gaddafi's internal intelligence service, even as US aircraft were bombing regime forces on the battlefield.
Mr Blumenthal emailed Mrs Clinton about Britain again on March 8, 2012 with the subject: "France & UK behind Libya breakup".
By this time Gaddafi was dead and his regime had collapsed and a provisional government, the Libyan National Transitional Council, was trying to assert its authority across the country.
Mr Blumenthal told Mrs Clinton that MI6 and its French counterpart, the DGSE, were secretly encouraging rebels in eastern Libya to establish "a semi-autonomous zone" outside the control of the new government.
The plot was allegedly instigated by advisors to the French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, who believed that the new Libyan government was not "rewarding" French businesses for France's role in overthrowing Gaddafi.
He alleged that MI6 joined in the plan "at the instruction of the office of Prime Minister David Cameron".
"The French and British intelligence officials believe that the semi-autonomous regime in the eastern city of Benghazi will be able to organise business opportunities in that region," he wrote.
Extract from the email:
Mrs Clinton seems to have been sceptical about the report and forwarded it on to her aide Jake Sullivan with the comment: "This one strains credulity. What do you think?"
Mrs Clinton's aides appear unimpressed with the stream of emails coming from Mr Blumenthal and Mr Sullivan replied that the MI6 allegations sounded like "like a thin conspiracy theory".
Mrs Clinton was asked about the emails during a campaign appearance in Iowa and said Mr Blumenthal had been "a friend of mine for a very long time".
"He sent unsolicited emails which I passed on in some instances. That's just part of the give and take," she said.
The Foreign Office did not respond to a request for comment.
Mr Blumenthal memos have aroused interest in the US because they appear to show a blurring of the lines between Mrs Clinton's State Department and the Clinton Foundation set up by her husband.
Although he had no role in the State Department, he was working for the Clinton Foundation and various political groups allied with Mrs Clinton, according to the New York Times.
Mr Blumenthal worked in Bill Clinton's White House and was known for fierce loyalty to both the Clintons and for aggressively confronting their critics.
Aides to Barack Obama prevented Mrs Clinton from bringing him into the State Department in 2009, believing that he would only stir up trouble after the bitterly-fought election battle between Mr Obama and Mrs Clinton.
JW: Obama Admin Knew About Benghazi Before It Happened
Wed, 20 May 2015 18:17
Administration knew three months before the November 2012 presidential election of ISIS plans to establish a caliphate in Iraq
Administration knew of arms being shipped from Benghazi to Syria
(Washington, DC) '' Judicial Watch announced today that it obtained more than 100 pages of previously classified ''Secret'' documents from the Department of Defense (DOD)and the Department of State revealing that DOD almost immediately reported that the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi was committed by the al Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood-linked ''Brigades of the Captive Omar Abdul Rahman'' (BCOAR), and had been planned at least 10 days in advance. Rahman is known as the Blind Sheikh, and is serving life in prison for his involvement in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and other terrorist acts. The new documents also provide the first official confirmation that shows the U.S. government was aware of arms shipments from Benghazi to Syria. The documents also include an August 2012 analysis warning of the rise of ISIS and the predicted failure of the Obama policy of regime change in Syria.
The documents were released in response to a court order in accordance with a May 15, 2014, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed against both the DOD and State Department seeking communications between the two agencies and congressional leaders ''on matters related to the activities of any agency or department of the U.S. government at the Special Mission Compound and/or classified annex in Benghazi.''
Spelling and punctuation is duplicated in this release without corrections.
A Defense Department document from the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), dated September 12, 2012, the day after the Benghazi attack, details that the attack on the compound had been carefully planned by the BOCAR terrorist group ''to kill as many Americans as possible.'' The document was sent to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, then-Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Obama White House National Security Council. The heavily redacted Defense Department ''information report'' says that the attack on the Benghazi facility ''was planned and executed by The Brigades of the Captive Omar Abdul Rahman (BCOAR).'' The group subscribes to ''AQ ideologies:''
The attack was planned ten or more days prior on approximately 01 September 2012. The intention was to attack the consulate and to kill as many Americans as possible to seek revenge for U.S. killing of Aboyahiye ((ALALIBY)) in Pakistan and in memorial of the 11 September 2001 atacks on the World Trade Center buildings.
''A violent radical,'' the DIA report says, is ''the leader of BCOAR is Abdul Baset ((AZUZ)), AZUZ was sent by ((ZAWARI)) to set up Al Qaeda (AQ) bases in Libya.'' The group's headquarters was set up with the approval of a ''member of the Muslim brother hood movement'...where they have large caches of weapons. Some of these caches are disguised by feeding troughs for livestock. They have SA-7 and SA-23/4 MANPADS'...they train almost every day focusing on religious lessons and scriptures including three lessons a day of jihadist ideology.''
The Defense Department reported the group maintained written documents, in ''a small rectangular room, approximately 12 meters by 6 meters'...that contain information on all of the AQ activity in Libya.''
(Azuz is again blamed for the Benghazi attack in an October 2012 DIA document.)
The DOD documents also contain the first official documentation that the Obama administration knew that weapons were being shipped from the Port of Benghazi to rebel troops in Syria. An October 2012 report confirms:
Weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the Port of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The weapons shipped during late-August 2012 were Sniper rifles, RPG's, and 125 mm and 155mm howitzers missiles.
During the immediate aftermath of, and following the uncertainty caused by, the downfall of the ((Qaddafi)) regime in October 2011 and up until early September of 2012, weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles located in Benghazi, Libya were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the ports of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The Syrian ports were chosen due to the small amount of cargo traffic transiting these two ports. The ships used to transport the weapons were medium-sized and able to hold 10 or less shipping containers of cargo.
The DIA document further details:
The weapons shipped from Syria during late-August 2012 were Sniper rifles, RPG's and 125mm and 155mm howitzers missiles. The numbers for each weapon were estimated to be: 500 Sniper rifles, 100 RPG launchers with 300 total rounds, and approximately 400 howitzers missiles [200 ea '' 125mm and 200ea '' 155 mm.]
The heavily redacted document does not disclose who was shipping the weapons.
Another DIA report, written in August 2012 (the same time period the U.S. was monitoring weapons flows from Libya to Syria), said that the opposition in Syria was driven by al Qaeda and other extremist Muslim groups: ''the Salafist, the Muslim Brotherhood, and AQI are the major forces driving the insurgency in Syria.'' The growing sectarian direction of the war was predicted to have dire consequences for Iraq, which included the ''grave danger'' of the rise of ISIS:
The deterioration of the situation has dire consequences on the Iraqi situation and are as follows:
This creates the ideal atmosphere for AQI [al Qaeda Iraq] to return to its old pockets in Mosul and Ramadi, and will provide a renewed momentum under the presumption of unifying the jihad among Sunni Iraq and Syria, and the rest of the Sunnis in the Arab world against what it considers one enemy, the dissenters. ISI could also declare an Islamic state through its union with other terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria, which will create grave danger in regards to unifying Iraq and the protection of its territory.
Some of the ''dire consequences'' are blacked out but the DIA presciently warned one such consequence would be the ''renewing facilitation of terrorist elements from all over the Arab world entering into Iraqi Arena.''
From a separate lawsuit, the State Department produced a document created the morning after the Benghazi attack by Hillary Clinton's offices, and the Operations Center in the Office of the Executive Secretariat that was sent widely through the agency, including to Joseph McManus (then-Hillary Clinton's executive assistant). At 6:00 am, a few hours after the attack, the top office of the State Department sent a ''spot report'' on the ''Attack on U.S. Diplomatic Mission in Benghazi'' that makes no mention of videos or demonstrations:
Four COM personnel were killed and three were wounded in an attack by dozens of fighters on the U.S. Diplomatic Mission in Benghazi beginning approximately 1550 Eastern Time'....
The State Department has yet to turn over any documents from the secret email accounts of Hillary Clinton and other top State Department officials.
''These documents are jaw-dropping. No wonder we had to file more FOIA lawsuits and wait over two years for them. If the American people had known the truth '' that Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and other top administration officials knew that the Benghazi attack was an al-Qaeda terrorist attack from the get-go '' and yet lied and covered this fact up '' Mitt Romney might very well be president. And why would the Obama administration continue to support the Muslim Brotherhood even after it knew it was tied to the Benghazi terrorist attack and to al Qaeda? These documents also point to connection between the collapse in Libya and the ISIS war '' and confirm that the U.S. knew remarkable details about the transfer of arms from Benghazi to Syrian jihadists,'' stated Tom Fitton, Judicial Watch president. ''These documents show that the Benghazi cover-up has continued for years and is only unraveling through our independent lawsuits. The Benghazi scandal just got a whole lot worse for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.''
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Big Pharma
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Carefirst Cyber Breach
Our company provides coverage and claims processing to Congress, Senate, and another person that unfortunately naming his position would violate HIPAA but I'm sure you can deduce.
We received more messages from upper management last night to stay on message and not deviate. This morning not a word from anyone, kind of like it's never happened. IF this affects those three groups be sure there will be new laws as it will have affected them directly. And you know how much fun those people can be when they're directly affected.
I will say this that I find it odd that we've known for at least three months and we're just releasing it now. Maybe they're trying to get the 30% rate increases that the ACA is making necessary to pay for everyone off of the front page.
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In Congress: New bill requires mandatory childhood vaccine schedule
Mon, 18 May 2015 13:03
The U.S. Congress is now entertaining legislation which will make mandatory childhood vaccination schedules currently prescribed by the CDC. The way of enforcing this new and stricter regime is by tying compliance directly to federal funding. From the bill:"REQUIREMENT.'--For a State or a political subdivision or other public entity of a State to be eligible to receive a grant under this section, the applicant shall demonstrate to the Secretary's satisfaction that, subject to paragraphs (2) and (3), the State requires each student enrolled in one of the State's public elementary schools or public secondary schools to be vaccinated in accordance with the recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices."
(C) Natural Society
Should this legislation pass, it will make it virtually impossible for parents to opt out their children from the aggressive childhood schedules, regardless of the reason. Up until now, there have been exemptions granted for a variety of good reasons. Religious and philosophical exemptions are chief among those which have produced an immediate release for those children attending public school.What is particularly puzzling is that children are reacting to the ingredients in vaccines with greater frequency. Nevertheless, doctors rarely if ever test their pediatric patients for allergies, sensitivities, or intolerances to the various proven toxins and contaminants put in vaccines.
It would seem reasonable that the undeveloped and fragile bodies of newborn infants and young children would prompt the medical authorities to err on the side of caution. In fact, there is always a rush to vaccinate in spite of the complete lack of qualifying each baby or young child as a candidate for these potentially illness-causing vaccines. Family histories alone would provide a good starting point in trying to determine the likelihood of an adverse reaction.
Do you think there should be mandatory vaccinations, or do you think parents should have the choice to vaccinate their children - or at least decide to opt out of certain vaccinations while allowing others?
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75% of children who received vaccines in Mexican town now dead or hospitalized. Depopulation test run?
Wed, 20 May 2015 19:56
(C) www.dailymail.co.ukOfficials: Jos(C) Antonio Gonzlez Anaya, the general director of the Mexican Institute for Social Security (far right), and Manuel Velasco Coello, the governor of Chiapas, were photographed meeting with affected families.
Despite the insidious attempts of the corporate-controlled U.S. media to censor the stories about the deadly side effects of vaccines, the truth keeps surfacing. The latest vaccine tragedy to strike has killed two babies in La Pimienta, Mexico and sent 37 more to the hospital with serious reactions to toxic vaccine additives."...14 children are in serious condition, 22 are stable and one is in critical condition," the Chiapas Health Secretariat said in a statement via Latino.FoxNews.com.
What's especially alarming is that only 52 children were vaccinated in all, meaning that 75% of those receiving the vaccines are now either dead or hospitalized.
The vaccines were administered by the Mexican Social Security Institute, known as IMSS. The IMSS confirmed the deadly reactions occurred after children received injections of vaccines for tuberculosis, rotavirus and hepatitis B -- the same viral strains targeted by vaccines routinely administered to children in the United States.
(C) www.dailymail.co.ukSix of 29 babies are in grave condition after receiving vaccinations.
IMSS suspends vaccination pending further investigationAccording to Fox News Latino, the IMSS has suspended the vaccines pending the outcome of an investigation into why so many children have been killed and hospitalized.
According to the entire mainstream media in the United States -- which is 100% controlled by corporate interests -- vaccines never harm anyone and are perfectly safe to inject into children in unlimited quantities. This dangerous, inhumane "Vaccine Injury Denialism" is rampant across the corporate-controlled media, which contributes to the deaths of innocent babies and children by refusing to acknowledge the truth that vaccines kill and injure children on a regular basis.
Just recently, in fact, the UK government agreed to pay $90 million to victims of the swine flu vaccine. That vaccine caused permanent brain damage to over 800 children across Europe. The truth is that vaccines regularly harm and even kill innocent children, most likely because of the toxic chemical adjuvants and preservatives they still contain.
As the CDC openly admits, vaccines are still intentionally formulated with mercury, aluminum, MSG and formaldehyde. Some vaccines even use ingredients derived from aborted human fetal tissue. Last year, a CDC scientist blew the whistle on the CDC committing scientific fraud to cover up links between vaccines and autism in young African-American males.
Test run for depopulation via vaccines?
As globalists now fully realize, vaccines are by far the best way to cull the human population because most people can be tricked into lining up and asking for them. Thus, there's no need to resort to all the difficulties used by the Nazis to commit genocide in World War II, involving complex logistics of railroad cars, gas chambers, construction of mass graves, prisoner tracking via IBM computing technology, and so on. (Yes, Nazi genocide and prisoner tracking was powered by early IBM computers. See IBM and the Holocaust, the strategic alliance between Nazi Germany and America's most powerful corporation...)
As the vaccine industry has now come to realize, it's so much easier to kill people when they voluntarily comply with the injections. Hence the aggressive media propaganda push to achieve absolute blind obedience to vaccines so that no one will ask questions when sterilization or euthanasia chemicals are used. That's no doubt why vaccines have been routinely tested for depopulation programs via two primary methods:
# 1) Achieve covert sterilizations of targeted populations by combining sterilization chemicals with vaccines. (The "slow kill.")
# 2) Directly kill vaccine recipients by intentionally lacing vaccines with euthanasia chemicals that cause death. (The "fast kill.")
Method #1 has been repeatedly used throughout Africa, Mexico and South America to inflict sterilization upon targeted groups via immunization and vaccination programs. Just last year, in fact, I reported on the discovery of a covert depopulation vaccine program being run in Kenya:
Tetanus vaccines given to millions of young women in Kenya have been confirmed by laboratories tocontain a sterilization chemicalthat causes miscarriages, reports the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association, a pro-vaccine organization.
A whopping 2.3 million young girls and women are in the process of being given the vaccine, pushed by UNICEF and the World Health Organization."We sent six samples from around Kenya to laboratories in South Africa. They tested positive for the HCG antigen," Dr. Muhame Ngare of the Mercy Medical Centre in Nairobi told LifeSiteNews. "They were all laced with HCG."
Method #2 now appears to be under way in Mexico as 75% of those children injected with vaccines are now either dead or hospitalized.
Vaccine-induced depopulation was attempted in Mexico in 1974
As Truth Stream Media exhaustively documented, a depopulation exercise was run in Mexico in 1974, using vaccines as the cover story.
The scheme was dreamed up after the release of the National Security Study Memorandum 200 which highlighted the global population problem and urged governments to find ways to reduce the global population.
As TruthStreamMedia.com explains: Concentration on this "problem" of how to reduce the population was planned for 13 key countries, including India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nigeria, Mexico, Indonesia, Brazil, the Philippines, Thailand, Egypt, Turkey, Ethiopia and Colombia. Of those, the document singled out Mexico as having one of the highest (and therefore, most worrisome) growth rates of all. The document read, "Perhaps the most significant population trend from the viewpoint of the United States is the prospect that Mexico's population will increase from 50 million in 1970 to over 130 million by the year 2000."
To combat this problem, "medical spooks" -- who were almost certainly U.S.-funded depopulation vaccine crews -- began injecting women all across Mexico with anti-fertility drugs disguised as vaccines. If you doubt this, read your history. The U.S. government's National Institutes of Health was caught red-handed running human medical experiments on prisoners in Guatemala. President Obama was even forced to publicly apologize in 2011 after the cover-up collapsed! There is nothing the Nazis did in the 1930s and 40s that the pharmaceutical industry wouldn't be willing to repeat today under the label of "science."
But getting back to Mexico, as the covert depopulation vaccination program spread across Mexico City in 1974, locals began to catch on to the deception, and public resistance grew. As these newspaper clippings reveal, parents began hiding their children in their own homes to avoid them being injected with sterilization chemicals at the public schools. (California, by the way, also targets children at schools in order to avoid parents having the opportunity to say "No!")
Mexico City - Associated Press - Rumors that persons disguised as inoculation teams were giving school children shots that sterilized them forced health authorities to suspend all vaccination drives today and to post police outside Mexico City schools. Thousands of parents stormed various schools in the Mexico City area Tuesday and took their children home.(C) Santa Cruz Sentinel
It's also important to note that these sterilization vaccines were being administered essentially at gunpoint, as police were accompanying the vaccine crews:Callers told newspapers and TV stations that the sterilization crews were protected by police escorts and that they included white-robed men and women "who looked like foreigners."
This same scenario is now about to be replicated in California, by the way, whereSB 277would criminalize parents of children who are not vaccinated, essentially at gunpoint.What's even more interesting is that the exact same arguments we hear today about vaccine skeptics -- they're punitively labeled "anti-vaxxers" or "anti-science" -- were also being used in Mexico in 1974. As the following newspaper clipping shows:The Mexican Medical Association issued statements denying that any kind of inoculation could cause sterility... Officials said superstition and ignorance of preventive health [i.e. "anti-science"] were responsible for the widespread belief that the rumors were true.
(C) Daily Optic
In other words, even though sterilization teams were running around Mexico, injecting people with chemicals as part of a depopulation agenda, any person who pointed this out was immediately labeled "anti-science" and derided as "ignorant." Very little has changed in four decades, it seems: the same tactic is still used today, even while children are being killed or injured every single day due to the toxic ingredients used in vaccines.CDC's intelligence operatives caught running disinfo campaigns
The "science bullying" behind vaccines also allows governments of the world to run sterilization and depopulation programs disguised as public health. Once the population is bullied into accepting vaccines without question -- blind obedience is now demanded almost everywhere -- governments can add any chemicals they want to those vaccines, including chemicals that cause permanent sterilization or even death.
The fact that all vaccine injuries are systematically denied to exist also means that any person harmed or killed by vaccines is immediately wiped from the national memory. Like a criminal mafia, the vaccine industry works hard to hide the bodies and thereby maintain its monopolistic racket on the utterly false premise that vaccines are 100% safe. To further drive home this extraordinary medical propaganda, the CDC uses intelligence operatives like Nurse Hickox who spread disinfo through the mainstream media, which is always happy to comply with the destructive agendas of the vaccine industry.
Nurse Kaci Hickox, who has made headlines over the last few days by refusing to quarantine herself after returning from the Ebola front lines in Africa, turns out to have been trained as an "intelligence officer" under a two-year CDC program modeled after the U.S. military.
As you can see from the document below, Hickox graduated from a two-year CDC intelligence officer training program in 2012. This is the same nurse whose LinkedIn page was recently scrubbed to hide her ties to the CDC.
The official intelligence designation granted to Nurse Hickox by the CDC was "Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer," and she is a graduate of the 2012 EIS program according to this CDC document (PDF). (See page 138 - 139 for her name and photo, or view photo below.)
That same year, the CDC graduated 81 such "intelligence officers" whose names and photos are also listed in the public document.
Bottom line? Don't trust the vaccine industryWhat's the takeaway realization from all this? Vaccines have been and will continue to be used as a cover for forced depopulation programs involving sterilization or euthanasia chemicals.
Obedience to vaccines allows depopulation teams accompanied by armed police to intimidate people into accepting any liquid they want to put in a syringe. That liquid might be a vaccine, or it might be a sterilization chemical or even a euthanasia chemical.
Any population that is indoctrinated into trusting the vaccine industry -- an industry steeped in repeated criminal activity combined with a total disregard for human life -- is ripe for being targeted for depopulation. After all, why go through the trouble of building gas chambers and rounding people up for mass extermination when you can achieve the same result without any resistance at all if you simply label the chemicals "vaccines"?
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CPR/AED changes in CDC recommendations. No longer Breathing first. CPR first.
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NWO
The International Flag of Planet Earth
Wed, 20 May 2015 18:21
THE DESIGN
The scientific study of flags is called vexillology, and the practice of designing flags is called vexillography. Both of these are an outcome of heraldry. In these practices there are different unofficial design rules/costums, about colors, placement, proportions, typography, and aestethics in general.
This proposal is accurate according to the regulations regarding flags.
SYMBOLIC EXPLANATION
Centered in the flag, seven rings form a flower '' a symbol of the life on Earth. The rings are linked to each other, which represents how everything on our planet, directly or indirectly, are linked. The blue field represents water which is essential for life '' also as the oceans cover most of our planet's surface. The flower's outer rings form a circle which could be seen as a symbol of Earth as a planet and the blue surface could represent the universe.
HERALDIC BLAZON
Centered on an azure field, seven circles of silver interlaced, creating a flower.
Obama Nation
Corinthian collapse sparks effort to cancel student loan debt | Reuters
Thu, 21 May 2015 02:48
WILMINGTON, Del. May 19 The bankruptcy of Corinthian Colleges Inc, one of the biggest for-profit college chains, has set off a scramble to find a way to wipe away billions of dollars of student loans for those who attended its campuses.
More than 50 consumer and labor organizations sent a joint petition on Tuesday to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, urging him to cancel federal student loans owed by 78,000 who attended Corinthian schools.
The groups, including the National Consumer Law Center, said the Department of Education had the authority because Corinthian misrepresented its job placement rates and defrauded students by enrolling them in high-cost, low-quality classes.
Corinthian settled allegations about misrepresenting job placements with the California attorney general in 2007.
NCLC lawyer Robyn Smith said there was no precedent for the department to cancel student debt in the way the groups were urging.
"Unfortunately, they haven't used this authority before," she said.
The Department of Education said it had not decided how any debt relief would work.
"Our administration is committed to making sure students who have been defrauded or whose schools closed receive every penny of debt relief that they are entitled to," said Assistant Press Secretary Denise Horn. "We will make that as easy as possible for students, and we will hold institutions accountable."
Scott Gautier, a lawyer representing an official committee of students, said in an email that student debt "should be recognized as Corinthian's ill-gotten gains and should be recovered, if at all possible, directly by the government from Corinthian."
Corinthian entered Chapter 11 with $143 million in debt and about $19 million in assets, according to court documents.
The company operated the Heald College, Everest and WyoTech schools and offered degrees in healthcare and trades. In 2014, it sold 56 campuses to Education Credit Management Corp, a company known for fighting attempts to discharge student loans in bankruptcy.
In April, Corinthian closed the last 28 of its campuses without warning, leaving 16,000 students unable to complete their classes. Those students can apply for a loan discharge, according to the Department of Education.
Creditors could target Corinthian executives, who reaped millions in annual salaries, according to regulatory filings.
On Monday, top current and former Corinthian executives said in court papers that they were seeking liability insurance money to pay for their mounting legal costs stemming from criminal and civil actions. (Reporting by Tom Hals in Wilmington, Delaware; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)
Drone Nation
Italy, France, Germany sign European drone project
Tue, 19 May 2015 20:54
BRUSSELS - Reuters
Defence ministers from (L-R) France, Jean-Yves Le Drian, Germany, Ursula von der Leyen and Italy, Roberta Pinotti sign an agreement to develop a European combat drone fin a 2025 timeframe, at the European Council, in Brussels, on May 18, 2015. AFP Photo
Italy, France and Germany agreed on May 18 to develop a European drone program for reconnaissance and surveillance, seeking to inject momentum into a proposal first considered in 2013 to reduce reliance on U.S. and Israeli technology. In a joint signing ceremony, the defense ministers of the three countries pledged a two-year study to lay the basis for a European drone to be operating by 2025 and said Spain and Poland had expressed interest in joining the plan.
''It's a very important step for European cooperation, a critical cooperation which we must have at our disposal in many theatres of operation,'' French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said, alongside his German and Italian counterparts.
After false starts at the national level, the three countries appear ready to cooperate on research into drone technologies. Competing national needs, corporate rivalry and a lack of government support have undermined past efforts.
Airbus, Dassault and Alenia Aermacchi are likely to develop the drones.
Large drones operated by European armed forces are mostly based on U.S. or Israeli designs, creating a dependence on foreign technology that some European companies and officials see as bad for European industry and military capabilities.
The EU's aim is to develop a medium-altitude, long-endurance (MALE) drone, a category that can fly at an altitude of up to 9,000 meters for 24 hours.
It wants a flexible surveillance drone that could be used for civilian purposes such as border control, fire-fighting and disaster monitoring. One EU diplomat said they could also have a military role, carrying weapons.
May/18/2015
PHOTO GALLERY
$hadow Puppet Theatre
The election is over. What happens to all that campaign cash? - CSMonitor.com
Mon, 18 May 2015 16:57
Business/Saving MoneySave this article
(Read article summary)An estimated 5.8 billion was spent on the 2012 election. Where can candidates spend their leftover money? What is off limits?
By Brandon Ballenger, Contributor / November 11, 2012
The election is over. For now, no more attack ads, no more barrage of emails begging for money.
But speaking of cash, what about the money raked in by campaigns that was left unspent?
It's a little too early to call the grand total of all 2012 election spending, but the Center for Responsive Politics estimates it will be above $5.8 billion, 7 percent higher than 2008. ''But outside spending,'' the group says, ''is a wild card that makes predictions tricky.''
Outside spending includes money from corporations, unions, individuals, and other political groups. Investigative journalism site ProPublica's PAC Track is trying to do the math, and right now says prominent political action committees spent a total of $581 million. That includes ''Super PACs,'' which because of a 2010 Supreme Court ruling, opened the door for unlimited fundraising and spending.
As for the campaigns, The New York Times breaks it down pretty well, although they pair up the campaigns and their political parties' spending with their biggest Super PAC supporters. (Super PACs can't legally coordinate with the campaigns '' you won't hear Obama or Romney say ''I approve this message'' at the end, but the money is still supporting them.) That means there's some overlap with the ProPublica numbers, but it gives us a ballpark idea: all told, somewhere above $2 billion between the two major parties. In 2008, Politico said it was unprecedented for that number to be more than $1 billion.
The NYT tallies include data through mid-October and may not match what's finally reported to the Federal Election Commission, but here's what we know so far'...
ObamaRomneyRaised$934.0m$881.8mSpent$852.9m$752.3mRemainder$134.7m$193.3mSo what happens to that monster chunk of change remaining? We asked the Federal Election Commission, an independent agency that regulates campaign finance.
How leftover money can be spentHere's what an FEC spokesperson told us:
"Surplus funds may be used in connection with a future election. Funds may be transferred between authorized committees of the same candidate (for example, from a previous campaign committee to a current campaign committee) without limit as long as the committee making the transfer has no ''net debts outstanding.'' CFR 110.3(c) and 116.2(c)(2). Alternatively, a candidate may redesignate a former campaign committee as the principal campaign committee of his or her current campaign and use the excess funds of the previous campaign in the current campaign.
Pages 51-57 of the FEC's Campaign Guide for Congressional Candidates and Committees (http://www.fec.gov/pdf/candgui.pdf) discuss the permissible, personal and prohibited uses of campaign funds. Pages 117-121 discuss winding down activity."
This explains a few things. One, debts have to be paid first '' and there isn't always a surplus of funds to cover them. Hillary Clinton is still paying off her $25 million 2008 presidential campaign debt. (But she's down to just $73,000 as of mid-October.) According to Politico, so are Rudy Giuliani and many 2012 Republican contenders: Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain. (Ron Paul, however, has a $2 million surplus.) Want to look up other candidates' financial situations? Go crazy at the FEC disclosure page.
Second, the FEC's statement tells us money can be used for future campaigns. President Obama can't win a third term '' but could he help Hillary Clinton pay off her campaign debt?
Chapter 8 of the FEC campaign guide, Expenditures and Other Uses of Campaign Funds, says money can be donated to charities and state and local candidates. It also allows ''unlimited transfers to any national, state or local party committee.'' But for national candidates, there's a limit of $2,000. So that's out.
Could those funds be passed on to Obama's VP, Joe Biden? (On Election Day, he joked he might run for president again.) This is possible, but not directly '' the money would have to go to the Democratic National Committee, which could spend it to support Biden.
The FEC guide also tells us the money could be refunded to donors, spent on gifts (or ''donations of nominal value'') to non-family members, moving expenses after leaving office, home security for officeholders, and work-related ''travel expenses for a federal officeholder and his or her accompanying spouse and children,'' although a 2007 law puts some restrictions on that. (Interestingly, campaign cash can also be used prior to the election to pay candidates a salary '' but not to incumbents, and it's capped at the lesser of what they made last year or what the office they're seeking pays.)
Forbidden uses of campaign cashThe big no-no, of course, is personal use of political contributions. Campaign cash can't be spent on expenses that would exist even if the (former) candidate hadn't run for office. That's a broad definition, but the guide spells out some specific examples including college tuition, groceries, funeral expenses, clothes (excluding stuff like campaign T-shirts), mortgage or rent payments, leisure and entertainment, and gym and country club dues.
Just a couple of decades ago, former candidates could spend money on this stuff. Factcheck.org says, ''Retiring federal lawmakers used to be able to pocket extra cash and use it for cars, vacations, clothes, pet grooming, whatever '' but that changed in 1989 with the passage of the Ethics Reform Act.''
Brandon Ballenger is a writer for Money Talks News, a consumer/personal finance TV news feature that airs in about 80 cities as well as around the Web. This column first appeared in Money Talks News.
PedoBear
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Police investigating 1,400 suspects in VIP child sex abuse inquiry -- Puppet Masters -- Sott.net
Thu, 21 May 2015 01:44
(C) Various/PA/Getty/Wireimage/AFP/ReutersClockwise from top left: Fred Talbot, Gary Glitter, Jimmy Savile, Rolf Harris, Stuart Hall, Max Clifford.
More than 1,400 suspects have been investigated by police looking into child sex abuse allegations against VIPs including politicians, celebrities and institutions.A national police group, known as Operation Hydrant, released the figures at a briefing on its inquiry into possible links between child sex abuse investigations involving public figures currently being run by different forces across the country.
Chief Constable Simon Bailey, chair of the group, told the briefing that out of 1,433 alleged offenders identified nationwide, 76 were politicians, 43 were from the music industry, seven were from sport and 135 were from the TV, film or radio industries. Some 216 are now dead.
"The referrals are increasing on an almost daily basis. The numbers I refer to today are a snapshot in time," Bailey said.Operation Hydrant, created by the the National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC), the body that superseded the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo), is not leading any particular investigations itself but gathering intelligence on a number of ongoing inquiries.
Among investigations into historical sex crimes are Operation Pallial, which is looking at claims of abuse in care homes in north Wales and an inquiry into Knowl View school in Rochdale, where the late MP Sir Cyril Smith is said to have abused boys.
Bailey told the briefing that among the total number of suspects, 666 were alleged to have offended within institutions.
Detectives have identified 154 schools, 75 children's homes and 40 religious establishments among the institutions.
In addition, reports of non-historic child abuse have more than doubled in three years.
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Kamer wil opheldering over vermeend gedoogbeleid pedofilienetwerk | NU - Het laatste nieuws het eerst op NU.nl
Wed, 20 May 2015 14:22
De Tweede Kamer wil weten of het klopt dat de overheid jarenlang het bestaan van een omvangrijk pedofilienetwerk heeft gedoogd, waar zes politie- en justitiemedewerkers deel van zouden hebben uitgemaakt.VVD, SP, CDA, SGP en VNL hebben woensdag de nieuwe minister van Justitie Ard van der Steur om opheldering gevraagd.
Aanleiding voor de vragen is het bericht van het AD van afgelopen weekeinde waarin Martin de Witte, de advocaat van een voormalig jongensprostituee, bekendmaakte een verzoek bij de rechtbank te hebben ingediend om getuigen te horen over het gedogen van pedofilie in Amsterdam in de jaren 80 en 90.
Volgens de advocaat was de 'pedoprostitutie' met minderjarige jongens bekend bij de GGZ en wist de overheid van het bestaan van de 'pedobordelen'.
"Door de misbruikproblemen te negeren, is de overheid mede schuldig", zei De Witte tegen de krant. De SP en het CDA willen weten of het klopt dat deze signalen bekend waren en willen dat de rol van de overheid en de gemeente Amsterdam hierin onderzocht wordt.
DemminkHet verzoek aan de rechtbank om getuigen te horen is saillant, omdat op de lijst de namen van oud-minister Ivo Opstelten en oud-staatssecretaris Fred Teeven (beide Justitie) staan, net als die van voormalig topambtenaar van Justitie Joris Demmink.
Demmink, die al jaren in verband wordt gebracht met kindermisbruik, zou een van de hoge politie- en justitieambtenaren zijn die in beeld waren in het zogenoemde Rolodexonderzoek naar georganiseerde kindermisbruik door hooggeplaatste figuren. Fred Teeven was destijds een van de officieren van justitie in het onderzoek.
KamervragenDe VVD wil weten of het klopt dat een dergelijk strafrechtelijk onderzoek heeft plaatsgevonden. Het CDA en VNL vragen zich af of het klopt dat er zes politie- en justitiemedewerkers verdacht zijn geweest van pedoseksuele handelingen met minderjarigen.
Omdat het om hooggeplaatste figuren binnen Justitie zou gaan, wil de SGP weten of het mogelijk is onafhankelijk onderzoek te doen naar het vermeende misbruik of andere ernstige delicten door de topambtenaren.
De vorige minister van Justitie Opstelten verdedigde Demmink meerdere malen. In de Volkskrantnoemde hij Demmink, die hij kent van de rechtenstudie in Leiden waar zij lid waren van het Leids studentencorps Minerva, "een goede bekende".
Opstelten zei eerder nog over de betrokkenheid van Demmink in het Rolodex-onderzoek: "Het was niks, het is niks en het wordt niks."
VNL wil van de nieuwe minister van Justitie Van der Steur weten of hij op dezelfde manier tegen de zaak aankijkt.
Door: NU.nl/Avinash Bhikhie
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Journalist investigating child prostitution and corruption decapitated in Brazil
Thu, 21 May 2015 12:19
An investigative journalist has been found dead in the southeast of Brazil, police have reported. Evany Jose Metzker had been missing for days before he was discovered with his hands bound and signs that he had been tortured.The 67-year-old was discovered near the town of Padre Paraiso, which is 840km north of Rio de Janeiro. The blogger had been decapitated, while his ID card and credit cards were found near his body.
"His hands were tied behind his back and his body showed signs of torture," a police press officer told AP. Fabricia Nunes, the police commissioner in charge of the investigation, was ruling nothing out, saying the killing could be a politically-motivated murder or a crime of passion.
Evany Jose Metzker, Brazilian journalist investigating child prostitution & corruption killed
Meanwhile, Metzker's widow Hilma Chaves Borges Silva was positive she knew the reason the murder was carried out."I have no doubt that my husband was killed because of his work. He would investigate everything and thoroughly. I am certain that he managed to open a wound," she told the local news outlet Estado de Minas.
"He was investigating all the dirt on politicians, child prostitution and cargo theft, in a very dangerous area. Certainly he found out something that someone wanted to keep hidden," the 51-year-old added, saying his body was found not far from where they lived.
Metzker had been missing since May 13, the date of his last entry into blog, called Coruja do Vale. The Minais Gerais Union of Professional Journalists said the deceased had been investigating drug trafficking and child prostitution for several months, while he had also been looking into a number of regional corruption cases in his blog. He had accused local officials of involvement.
"It was a barbaric crime that has shocked Minas Gerais and all of Brazil," Kerison Lopes, president of the union told AP. "He was decapitated, scalped and tortured."
"There is a climate of terror in the region that intimidates reporters from doing their job," he said, adding that Metzker often received death threats.
The deputy program director of Reports without Borders, Virginie Dangles condemned the killing and called for a thorough independent investigation. "We condemn this barbaric murder and urge the authorities to concentrate on the possibility of a political motive," Dangles wrote on the organization's website.
"We also call for the investigation to be conducted in an independent, impartial and thorough manner so that this extremely violent crime does not go unpunished. Metzker is the second journalist to be killed this year in Brazil. The Brazilian authorities must take concrete measures to protect media personnel," she stated.Meanwhile, Carlos Lauria, from the Committee to Protect Journalists said that 14 Brazilian journalists have been killed since 2011. He said this has been "in retaliation for their work, making Brazil a very dangerous country for journalists."
"Lethal violence against the Brazilian press is on the rise, impeding journalists from reporting critically on what is going on," he said, according to AP. "The level of violence (against journalists) in Brazil is unacceptably high."
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MIC
US Approves Almost $2Bln Advanced Helicopter Sale to Saudi Arabia
Thu, 21 May 2015 02:24
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) '-- The US State Department has approved a $1.9 billion proposed sale of 10 advanced multi-mission helicopters, equipment and weaponry to Saudi Arabia, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said in a statement.
''The MH-60R Multi-Mission Helicopter will provide the capability to identify, engage, and defeat maritime security threats along with the ability to perform secondary missions including vertical replenishment, search and rescue, and communications relay,'' the DSCA said on Wednesday.
Produced by US defense contractors Lockheed Martin and Sikorsky, the MH-60R is the US Navy's premier anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare helicopter.
The proposed military sale includes radars, advanced targeting systems, navigation systems and Hellfire missiles.The deal comes a week after the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, including Saudi Arabia,met with senior US officials at Camp David where the United States pledged to increase security cooperation and weapons sales to Arab Gulf countries.
Saudi Arabia has been on a massive defense spending binge, moving into fourth place in world defense expenditures in 2014, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). In 2014 alone, the US ally increased defense spending by 17 percent as the Middle East faces instability and Riyadh remains concerned over its regional rival Iran.
Since 2005, Saudi Arabia has increased defense spending by 112 percent, according to SIPRI data.
VIDEO-CLIPS-DOCS
VIDEO-Ukraine's Poroshenko talks of 'real war' with Russia - BBC News
Sun, 24 May 2015 15:23
Ukraine's president has told the BBC his country is now in a "real war" with Russia - and that Ukrainians should prepare for a Russian offensive.
Petro Poroshenko told the BBC's Fergal Keane he did not trust his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, but had no option but to negotiate with him.
The Kremlin said it did not trust Mr Poroshenko either and accused Ukraine of "broken commitments".
Meanwhile Ukraine has charged two men it accuses of being Russian soldiers.
Russia denies Western accusations that it has sent regular troops and armour to help rebels in eastern Ukraine.
The United Nations says at least 6,000 people have been killed since fighting started in eastern Ukraine in April 2014.
'We should be ready'Mr Poroshenko said he believed Russia was preparing for "an offensive" in the summer.
"I think we should be ready and I think that we do not give them any tiny chance for provocation. That will totally be their responsibility," he said.
He said it was possible parts of eastern Ukraine could not be taken away from rebels by military means alone - meaning diplomacy was the only answer.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov responded by saying there was a "serious lack of trust" between the two countries, which stemmed from "specific broken commitments and... failure to implement the provisions of signed documents".
Ukraine claims that Aleksandr Aleksandrov, seen in a hospital in Kiev, is a Russian soldier Mr Poroshenko said he feared Ukrainian soldiers could not recapture rebel territory alone Speaking in Russia's upper chamber of parliament on Wednesday, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov condemned "radicals in Kiev and some other capitals" for trying to provoke a "further escalation" in the conflict. He warned this would have "terrible consequences both for Ukraine and the entire European security system".
'Real war'Pro-Russian rebels have made significant gains in eastern Ukraine, including, most recently, the rail hub of Debaltseve. They, and Russia, have denied they are receiving Moscow's support.
But Russia's role has again come into question in the past week, after the capture on Saturday of two men who Ukraine said were elite Russian soldiers in the Luhansk region.
In video statements posted by Ukraine's security service, Aleksandr Aleksandrov and Yevgeny Yerofeyev confirmed they were active Russian servicemen. However, Moscow said they were not serving "at the moment they were detained".
They were charged with involvement in "terrorist activity" on Wednesday, according a Ukrainian security official.
Mr Poroshenko said: "Can I be absolutely clear with you, this is not a fight with Russian-backed separatists, this is a real war with Russia.
"The fact that we captured... Russian regular special forces soldiers [is] strong evidence of that."
How many Russians are fighting in Ukraine?
On Tuesday, Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg called for an end to snap exercises by Russia close to the Ukrainian border, and demanded Russia be "more transparent when it comes to their military activities".
A ceasefire agreement was signed in Minsk in February, but heavy fighting has continued since then. Last week, Mr Poroshenko said at least 83 Ukrainian servicemen had been killed since the ceasefire came into effect.
Elsewhere in Ukraine, at least four Ukrainian soldiers were killed in the eastern Luhansk region on Tuesday. The region's governor said the men were attacked by separatist rebels near the village of Katerinovka.
VIDEO-McCain: Obama's ISIS comments are 'mindboggling' - CNN Video
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:31
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VIDEO-Arrested for reporting on Qatar's World Cup labourers - BBC News
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:56
We were invited to Qatar by the prime minister's office to see new flagship accommodation for low-paid migrant workers in early May - but while gathering additional material for our report, we ended up being thrown into prison for doing our jobs.
Our arrest was dramatic.
We were on a quiet stretch of road in the capital, Doha, on our way to film a group of workers from Nepal.
The working and housing conditions of migrant workers constructing new buildings in Qatar ahead of the World Cup have been heavily criticised and we wanted to see them for ourselves.
Suddenly, eight white cars surrounded our vehicle and directed us on to a side road at speed.
A dozen security officers frisked us in the street, shouting at us when we tried to talk. They took away our equipment and hard drives and drove us to their headquarters.
Later, in the city's main police station, the cameraman, translator, driver and I were interrogated separately by intelligence officers. The questioning was hostile.
We were never accused of anything directly, instead they asked over and over what we had done and who we had met.
Qatar has been criticised over abuse of migrant workers During a pause in proceedings, one officer whispered that I couldn't make a phone call to let people know where we were. He explained that our detention was being dealt with as a matter of national security.
An hour into my grilling, one of the interrogators brought out a paper folder of photographs which proved they had been trailing me in cars and on foot for two days since the moment I'd arrived.
I was shown pictures of myself and the team standing in the street, at a coffee shop, on board a bus and even lying next to a swimming pool with friends. It was a shock. I had never suspected I was being tailed.
At 01:00, we were taken to the local prison.
'Not Disneyland'It was meant to be the first day of our PR tour but instead we were later handcuffed and taken to be questioned for a second time, at the department of public prosecutions.
Thirteen hours of waiting around and questioning later, one of the interrogators snapped. "This is not Disneyland," he barked. "You can't stick your camera anywhere."
It was as if he felt we were treating his country like something to be gawped at, suggesting we thought of trips to see controversial housing and working conditions as a form of entertainment.
Qatari government statement, 18 May:"The Government Communications Office invited a dozen reporters to see - first-hand - some sub-standard labour accommodation as well as some of the newer labour villages. We gave the reporters free rein to interview whomever they chose and to roam unaccompanied in the labour villages.
"Perhaps anticipating that the government would not provide this sort of access, the BBC crew decided to do their own site visits and interviews in the days leading up to the planned tour. In doing so, they trespassed on private property, which is against the law in Qatar just as it is in most countries. Security forces were called and the BBC crew was detained."
BBC response:"We are pleased that the BBC team has been released but we deplore the fact that they were detained in the first place. Their presence in Qatar was no secret and they were engaged in a perfectly proper piece of journalism.
"The Qatari authorities have made a series of conflicting allegations to justify the detention, all of which the team rejects. We are pressing the Qatari authorities for a full explanation and for the return of the confiscated equipment."
In perfect English and with more than a touch of malice, he threatened us with another four days in prison - to teach us a lesson.
I began my second night in prison on a disgusting soiled mattress. At least we did not go hungry, as we had the previous day. One of the guards took pity on us and sent out for roast chicken with rice.
In the early hours of the next morning, just as suddenly as we were arrested, we were released.
Qatar has seen an influx of migrants to build facilities for the 2022 tournament Bizarrely, we were allowed to join the organised press trip for which we had come.
It was as if nothing had happened, despite the fact that our kit was still impounded, and we were banned from leaving the country.
I can only report on what has happened now that our travel ban has been lifted.
No charges were brought, but our belongings have still not been returned.
So why does Qatar welcome members of the international media while at the same time imprisoning them?
Is it a case of the left arm not knowing what the right arm is doing, or is it an internal struggle for control between modernisers and conservatives?
PR effortWhatever the explanation, Qatar's Jekyll-and-Hyde approach to journalism has been exposed by the spotlight that has been thrown on it after winning the World Cup bid.
Other journalists and activists, including a German TV crew, have also recently been detained.
How the country handles the media, as it prepares to host one of the world's most watched sporting events, is now also becoming a concern.
Mustafa Qadri, Amnesty International's Gulf migrant rights researcher, told us the detentions of journalists and activists could be attempts "to intimidate those who seek to expose labour abuse in Qatar".
Qatar, the world's richest country for its population size of little more than two million people, is pouring money into trying to improve its reputation for allowing poor living standards for low-skilled workers to persist.
Government inspectors have said some accommodation is substandard Inside Qatar's squalid labour camps
A highly respected London-based PR firm, Portland Communications, now courts international journalists. On the day we left prison, it showed us spacious and comfortable villas for construction workers, with swimming pools, gyms and welfare officers.
This was part of the showcase tour of workers' accommodation, and it was organised by the prime minister's office.
Qatar's World Cup organising committee, which answers to Fifa, was helping to run the tour.
Fifa says it is now investigating what happened to us. It has issued the following statement: "Any instance relating to an apparent restriction of press freedom is of concern to Fifa and will be looked into with the seriousness it deserves."
'Open country'Following our detention, the minister of labour agreed to talk to us on camera about how the media can cover what human rights campaigners have identified as "forced labour" within his country.
"Qatar is an open country forever, since ever," Abdullah al-Khulaifi said.
"The shortcomings that I am facing, the problems I am facing, I cannot hide. Qatar is open and now with the smartphones, everyone is a journalist," he said.
He said the negative coverage of migrant workers' conditions was wildly overblown and that much progress had been made to improve basic conditions for migrant workers.
The government has implemented a wage protection scheme. It says at least 450 companies have been banned from working in the country and more than $6m (£3.8m) of fines have been handed out to firms mistreating workers, and the number of inspectors has been doubled.
Workers are now ferried to and from work in buses, not lorries.
Labourers arriving at their housing after a shift But change has not come easily in what one security guard privately described to me as a country with surveillance officers everywhere.
Without trade unions or a free media, bosses of large domestic and international companies have little incentive to radically improve conditions for well over a million labourers desperate for money.
Before we were detained, I met an 18-year-old mechanic, one of the 400,000 Nepalese workers there.
He said he wanted to support his older brothers because his father had died and the family was struggling financially.
He paid a recruitment agency in Nepal $600 to arrange his visa to work in Qatar and was told he would earn $300 a month.
When he arrived he was told his salary, as a labour camp cleaner for air conditioning mechanics, was in fact $165 a month. He said he has never been given a copy of the contract he signed. Worse still, he said he could not understand it as it was in English.
It's a very common trick that foreign recruitment agents play before workers even get to Qatar, and very difficult for Qatar itself to police, although it says it is trying.
This young man now finds himself at the mercy of Qatar's restrictive kafala system, which prevents workers from changing jobs for five years. Being tied to an employer in that way can leave migrant workers open to exploitation.
However, with so much money needed for rebuilding decimated parts of Nepal, there will be no shortage of future volunteers.
And as Qatar's World Cup approaches, the focus on migrant labour is only likely to increase.
Are you affected by the issues in this story? Are you a migrant worker in Qatar? You can email haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk to share your experiences.
You can also contact us on WhatsApp: +44 (0)7525 900971.
When contacting us please include your name, location and your telephone number in your message.
VIDEO-Is Finland really getting ready for war with Russia?
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:48
Russia has become increasingly isolated on the global stage for over a year now as a result of its annexation of Crimea and role in the recent conflict in Ukraine. Nonetheless, it has been conducting military exercises over the last year, including in the Baltic Sea near the shores of Finland '' as well as other northern European countries.
Read MoreUkraine's economy may shrink 10% in 2015
Finland shares a land border with Russia but neither country is a member of the military alliance NATO, potentially making it more vulnerable to any future Russian aggression.
Seemingly aware of the potential military risks, the defense ministers of Nordic nations Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark and Iceland warned in April this year that Northern Europe must prepare for possible crises or incidents because of Russia.
Read MoreNew sanctions on Russia are 'economic war'
"Russia's leaders have shown that they are prepared to make practical and effective use of military means in order to reach their political goals, even when this involves violating principles of international law," the ministers wrote in a joint statement in Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten, Reuters reported.
Finland's army has around 16,000 members, although the number rises when including its Naval and Air Forces. The forces would be given a significant boost were reserves to be called up.
Reservists are those "who are liable for and have completed their military service," the Finnish Defence Forces (Finland's military) said on its website.
Read MoreThis key indicator shows how bad it is in Russia
The first letters were sent at the start of May with the final batch sent out in the last few days. Reservists were told by Finland's Defense Forces that within the letters:
"You will find your own details and your wartime assignment in the appendix with the letter. In other words, you can see whether you have an assigned wartime task, are in the reserve or have been reserved for other tasks by your employer."
VIDEO-[ì'¸í°ë·°] ê·¸ë ê·¸ ì 주í•' 미 ëŒì‚¬ "중국, í•'ë°ë 통ì'¼ 원í•ì§ 않ì•"
Sun, 24 May 2015 12:54
[앵ì>>¤]ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸ ì 주í•' 미ëŒì‚¬ê° í•'국에 ì--습ë‹ë‹¤. 햇ë"•ì •ì±…ì' ì§ì§ìžë', ëí•' ì²'ì•í•¨ 논쟁ì' 당사자ë' í•'때 논ëžì' 중심에 ìžì—ì§ìš--. ì¤ëŠ(19ì'¼) ì'´ 문ì '를 포함해ì', 스íŠ'ë----ì¤ì—ì' 짧게 íì•ì— ëŒí•´ì'ë ì–기 ë‚ëê² ìŠµë‹ë‹¤.
어ì' ì¤ì‹­ì‹'ì¤. 30ë… ë게 미 중ì•ì •ë"´êµ­ì— ìžì—ê" 자íƒê° ê"µì'¸í•ëŠ-- 북í•'통ì'´ë‹ ì'´ ì§ë¬¸ë¶í° ë''ë...¬ê" 싶습ë‹ë‹¤. íìì² 북í•' ì'¸ë¯¼ë¬´ë ¥ë¶ìž¥ì'´ ê"µê°'ì²í•ëë‹¤ëŠ-- í•'êµ­ êµ­ì •ì›ì' ë°'í‘'ê° ìžì—습ë‹ë‹¤. ë¯ì'만í•ë‹¤ê" ë"´ì‹­ë‹ê¹Œ?
[ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸/ì 주í•' 미국ëŒì‚¬ : ì ëŠ-- ì'´ëŸ° ë"´ëë¥¼ ì ‘í• ë•Œë§ë‹¤ 스스ë'에게 ë°ë¬¸í•ê²Œ ë(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ê"µê°' ì²í•ê"¼ ê°ì' 것ì' 통해 ê¹ì •ì'ì'´ ì–>>ì' ì ìžëŠ-- 것ì'´ ê"¼ì—° 무엇ì'¸ê°, ë ì' í–ì'까 í•ëŠ-- 것입ë‹ë‹¤. ì ëŠ-- ì'´ë²ê"¼ ê°ì' ì'¼ì' ê¹ì •ì'ì'´ ìžì‹ ì' ê¶Œë ¥ì' ë"´ë‹¤ êµ"ê±´íž í•ê¸° ì'í•' ì‹'ëë'¼ê" ë"´ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. í•ì§ë§Œ (ê" 사ì´'ì' ë‚'사í•ëŠ-- ë°(C)ì‹'ì'¼ë' ì²í•í–다ëŠ--) 소문ëŒë' ì'¸ë¯¼ë¬´ë ¥ë¶ìž¥ì' ê"µê°' ì²í•í–다ëŠ-- 것ì' ìžëŠ-- ê·¸ëŒë' ë¯ê¸°ê° ìƒë‹¹íž ì–´ë µìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ì'´ëŸ° ë°(C)ì‹'ì' ì²í•ì' 통해 ê¹ì •ì'ì'´ ì–>>ì' ì ìžëŠ-- 것ì' ì•ë¬´ê²ƒë 없습ë‹ë‹¤. ë ìžì‹ ì'´ ì°ì§í--í•ë ¤ëŠ-- ê´ë£Œë'¤ì—ê²Œë 매우 굴욕감ì' ì¤ ì ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. 때문에 ì ëŠ-- ê·¸ì ê°ì' ë"´ëë¥¼ ë¯ê¸° ížë'¤ë(C)°, ê¹ì •ì' 자기 ìžì‹ ì' ì'해ì'ë'¼ë 그런 ì'¼ì' 벌ì'´ì§ 않ì•ì' ê±°ë'¼ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤.][앵ì>>¤]
ì²'ì•í•¨ 문ì 'ë' ë어ê°ê² 습ë‹ë‹¤. ì'´ 문ì 'ë' êµ‰ìž¥íž ë…¼ëžì' ì'¼ì'¼í‚¤ì…¨ê¸° 때문에, 사실 ì'´ 문ì 'ëŠ-- ê¹ì •ì' ì·¨ìž ì 에 ì'¼ì'´ê¸´ í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. 근데 북í•' 소행ì'´ë'¼ëŠ-- í•'êµ­ ì •ë¶ì' ë°'í‘'에 ëŒí•´ì' ì'문ì' ì '기í•ì…¨ìŠµë‹ë‹¤. 그것 때문에 ì•ì‹'ëŠ-- 것ì²ëŸ¼ í•'êµ­ 내에ì 많ì' 논ëžì'´ ìžê¸°ë í–ê" ìš--. ì§ê¸ë 당ì‹'ì' ì •ë¶ ë°'í‘'를 ë¯ê¸° ì–´ë µë‹¤ê" ë"´ì‹­ë‹ê¹Œ?
[ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸/ì 주í•' 미국ëŒì‚¬ : ì¤ëŠ ì 'ê° 2010ë… 9ì›--, 뉴욕íƒìžìŠ¤ êµ­ì '판에 기ê" í–ë ê¸ì' 다ì‹' ì'½ì–´ë´¤ìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ 기ê" 문에ì' ì²'ì•í•¨ 침몰에 ëŒí•´ ì'문ì' ì '기í•' ë°-- ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. 기ê" 문ì' ì...‰ê°ì ì'¸ ë°í–¥ì' ì'¼ì'¼ì¼°ìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ë ì'´ 기ê" 문 때문에 ì ëŠ-- 미국ì‹' í‘'íì'¼ë' 소ì' '파티장ì' 스ì>>¹í¬'ê° ëê" 말ì•ìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ì•ë¬´ë 스ì>>¹í¬ì 함ê>> ìžê" 싶어 í•ì§ ì•Šì£ . ì 'ê° ê·¸ëŸ° ì‹ ì¸ê° ëë ê²ë‹ë‹¤. íŠ¹íž ì'´ëª…ë°• ì •ë¶ ê´ê"자에게 ì ëŠ-- ì'´ëŸ° 스ì>>¹í¬ì²ëŸ¼ ë¹ì¶°ìŒì' 것입ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ë...¬ê" 여ì íž ê·¸ëŸ¬í•ë‹¤ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. í•ì§ë§Œ 당ì‹' ì ë‚ ëŸ¬ì‹'ì•ê° ê°ìŒë ì'문ì' ì•ì§ê¹Œì§ 해결ëì§ 않ì•ìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ì ëŠ-- ì'´ 사ì•ì' ê"속해ì' ë°ë"µì ì'¼ë' ì'´ì•¼ê¸°ë¥¼ í•ì§ 않ì'¼ë ¤ í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ì'냐í•ë(C)´ 그건 í(C)소에게 붉ì' 깃ë°'ì' í'--ë''ëŠ-- 것ì'´ë‚ ë§ì°¬ê°ì§ì'´ê¸° 때문ì'´ì£ . ê·¸ë ‡ì§ë§Œ ì'´ 문ì '에 ëŒí•´ 다ì‹' ì'´ë ‡ê²Œ 물어ë"´ì…¨ê¸°ì— 답ì' ë''ë...¬ê² 습ë‹ë‹¤. ì 'ê° ë´¤ì' 때ëŠ-- 우ë...¬ê° 다ì‹' 살펴봐야 í• ë¬¸ì 'ìžì'´ ë¶ëª…í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ì•ì§ í'ë...¬ì§ 않ì' ì'ë¬¸ì ì'´ ìžë‹¤ë(C)´ ì'´ëŠ-- ê¼­ í'ë ¤ì•¼ë§Œ í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤.]
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ê·¸ë ê·¸ ì ëŒì‚¬ê>>ì' ê°ì§ê" ê"ì‹ ê°ìž¥ 큰 ì'ë¬¸ì ì'´ë'¼ë(C)´ 그건 어떤 것입ë‹ê¹Œ?
[ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸/ì 주í•' 미국ëŒì‚¬ : 우ì 어ë§'ì'´ ì 함ì' 스크루에 엉ì¼' ìžì—습ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ë...¬ê" ì 체에 ìžëŠ-- ì›í‘¹ ë'¤ì–´ê° 자국ì' ë"´ê²Œ ëë(C)´ ì'´ê²ƒì' ì²'ì•í•¨ì'´ ìŒì´ê° ëì—ì' ìë ìžë‹¤ëŠ-- 것ì' ì'미í•ê²Œ ë(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ëí•' ê·¸ ì§ì—­ ê°ì' 경우에ëŠ-- ìë…ê° 기ë°ê° 많ì'´ 매ì¤ë' ì§ì—­ì'´ì—습ë‹ë‹¤. ëí•' 러ì‹'ì• ì°ì‚¬ë‹¨ì— ë--°ë¥´ë(C)´ ì'´ 폭ë°'ì' 패í´ì' 어ë°ì— ì'í•' 폭ë°'ë"´ë‹¤ëŠ-- 기ë°ì— ì'í•' 폭ë°'에 ì ë-- ê°ê¹'다ê" ë"´ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ì'´ ë°–ì—ë ì²'ì•í•¨ì'´ 만약에 북í•'에 ì'해ì' 침몰ì'´ ëì—다ê" 해ë, 북í•'ì'´ 미군 함ëŒì í•'êµ­ì' 해군 함ëŒê° í›ë ¨í•ê" ìžë ì§ì—­ì—ì' 그런 ì'¼ì' 벌ì다ëŠ-- ê±´ ê" ëì' êµ°ì‚¬ë ¥ì' ê°ìŒë‹¤ëŠ-- ë'>>ì'´ ë(C)ë‹ë‹¤. í•ì§ë§Œ ì ëŠ-- 북í•'ì'´ ì²'ì•í•¨ì' 침몰ì‹'킬 ì ìžëŠ-- ëŠ¥ë ¥ì' ë"´ì' í•ê" ìžì§ 않다ê" ìƒ'각ì' í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤.]
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ê·¸ë ‡ë‹¤ë(C)´ 미국ì'´ ì'´ê²ƒì' ì'¸ì •í•' 것ì' 어찌 ë"´ë(C)´ ìžì‹ ë'¤ì' ëŒ ìž ì함 ëŠ¥ë ¥ì'´ë'¼ë' ê°, ì'´ëŸ° 것ì'´ êµ‰ìž¥íž ê²°í•¨ì'´ ìžë‹¤ëŠ-- 것ì' ì'¸ì •í•' 것ê"¼ ë§ì°¬ê°ì§ì'¸ë° ì' 미국ì' 거기에 ëì'를 í•ëŠ-- 것ì'¼ê¹Œìš--?
[ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸/ì 주í•' 미국ëŒì‚¬ : ê·¸ ì§ë¬¸ì— ëŒí•´ì ì 'ê° ë‹µì' í• ìê° ì—†ìŠµë‹ë‹¤. í•ì§ë§Œ ì í'¬ê° ì'ë‘러ì' 판단ì' í–다ê" ìƒ'각ì' í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. 북í•'에 ëŒì²í•¨ì— ìžì–´ ì'¼ì…ì' ì...'상ì'´ ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. 그것ì' ë°--ë' 미국ì'´ ì‹ì•í•ì§ ì•Šê±°ë‚ ì'´í•´í•ì§ ëª>>í•ëŠ-- ëŒìƒì' 악ë§í--í•ë ¤ëŠ-- 경향ì'´ ìžë‹¤ëŠ-- 것입ë‹ë‹¤. 미국ì' 북í•'ì' ì‹ì•í•ì§ë 않ê" ì'´í•´í•ì§ë ëª>>í•ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ì'´ëŸ° 무ì§ë' ì'¸í•´ (í실ê"¼) 큰 ê²(C)ì°¨ê° ìƒ'기ë(C)´ ê·¸ ì°¨ì'´ë§Œí¼ì' 편견ì'¼ë' ë(C)--우ëŠ-- 경향ì'´ ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ë--°ë'¼ì' ì–´ë– í•' ë‚ì' ì'¼ì'´ 벌어ìŒì' 때 북í•'ì'´ ì'´ ë‚ì' ì'¼ì' í–ì'까? í•ì§ 않ì•ì'까?ë'¼ëŠ-- ì'문ì'´ ë– ì¤ë¥´ê²Œ ëë(C)´ 거기에 ëŒí•´ ì...‰ê°ì ì'¼ë' 북í•'ì'´ ì'´ ë‚ì' ì'¼ì' í–ì' 것ì'´ë‹¤ë'¼ê" ì¶--ì¸ì' 해ë²ë...¬ê" ë§ë‹ë‹¤. ë--°ë'¼ì' ì'´ì ê°ì' 편견ì' 무ëë'¨ë...¬ëŠ-- 것ì'´ 매우 ì–´ë µìŠµë‹ë‹¤.]
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다른 ì'´ì•¼ê¸°ë' ì ë어ê°ê² 습ë‹ë‹¤. ì¤ë°--ë§ ëŒí†µë ¹ì'´ 2009ë…에 ëŒí†µë ¹ ì·¨ìž ì 에 ì ë°--ì ì'´ëž, 북í•'ì' 언급í•ë(C)´ì' ì ê"¼ì' 악ì를 언급í•' ë°-- ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. 실ì 'ë' ì ë°--í•ê" ë êµ­êµë¥¼ 다ì‹' ë ë"µì›ì‹'ì¼°ê" ìš--. ì'´ëžë ë§ì°¬ê°ì§ê" , 그러ë(C)´ 다ì'Œ ì°¨ëëŠ-- 북í•'ì'´ ë ìë ìžë‹¤ê" ë"´ì‹­ë‹ê¹Œ? ì¤ë°--ë§ì' ìžê¸° 내에?
[ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸/ì 주í•' 미국ëŒì‚¬ : ì§ê¸ì' ì¤ë°--ë§ ëŒí†µë ¹ì'´ 북í•'에 ëŒí•´ì' 급ì§ì ì'¸ ì 략ì' ì·¨í• ì ìžëŠ-- 상í(C)ì'´ ì•ë‹ë'¼ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ì'냐í•ë(C)´ í재ë'ì'ëŠ-- ê·¸ì ê°ì' 것에 ëŒí•' ì •ì¹ì ì'¸ ì§ì›ì'´ ì í 없기 때문입ë‹ë‹¤. ì ë°--에 손ì' ë‚´ë° ì ìžì—ë ì'´ì' ëŠ-- 교í(C)ì' ì—­í• ì'´ 매우 ì>>¸ìŠµë‹ë‹¤. 교í(C)ì' ì§ì›ì' 통해ì' ì ë°--ì' 카스트ë'ì 미국ì' 만남ì'´ 주ì ë ì ìžì—기 때문입ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ë...¬ê" 미국에ì'ëŠ-- ê"µì‹'ì ì'¼ë' 언급í•ê" ìžì§ 않ì§ë§Œ 1951ë…에 미국ì'´ ì'´ëžì' ì •ê¶Œì' ì ë"µì‹'킨 ì ì'´ ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ëí•' ì'´ëžê"¼ì' ê´ê"를 ê°'ì ì‹'ì¼' ë‚ê°ëŠ-- 것ì' 매우 중ìš--í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. í•ì§ë§Œ ì'´ ë…¸ë ¥ì— ìžì–´ 많ì' 문ì 'ë'¤ì'´ ëì‚¬ë...¬ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ 중 í•ë‚ê° ì'´ìŠ¤ë'¼ì—ê"¼ ê´ë ¨ë' 문ì 'ì'¼ 것입ë‹ë‹¤. í•ì§ë§Œ ì ëŠ-- ì¤ë°--ë§ í–‰ì •ë¶ê° 북í•'에 손ì' ë‚´ë° ê²ƒì'´ë'¼ê" ëŠ-- ìƒ'각í•ì§ 않습ë‹ë‹¤. 손ì' 내민다 í•ë--ë'¼ë ê·¸ ì°ì¹ì— ëŒí•´ì' 박ì를 ì"ì¤ 만í•' 청중ì'´ 없기 때문입ë‹ë‹¤.]
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ìµ'ê·¼ì' í•'미ê°ì' íì•ì' 사ë'' 문ì 'ê° ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ëžì' 어ì ' ì´ ì¼ë...¬ 미 국무장ê´ë 사ë'' 문ì '를 언급í–습ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ í•ìš--ì±ì— ëŒí•´ì'. ëì'í•ì‹'ëŠ--ì§ìš--?
[ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸/ì 주í•' 미국ëŒì‚¬ : í재 사ë''ëŠ-- ì•ì§ê¹Œì§ ìë¹ì ì'¸ 단ê"ë'¼ê" ìƒ'각í•ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. 미국 군산ë"µí•(C)ì²´ì' 논쟁에ì' í•'êµ­ì' 중ê°ì— 끼ì'¸ ì‹ ì¸ê° ëì—습ë‹ë‹¤. 그건 í•'êµ­ì' ìžëª>>ì'´ ì•ë‹ë‹ë‹¤. ê"¼ê±°ì—ë 그랬ë'¯ì'´ í•'êµ­ì' ì§ì •í•ì  ì'ì¹ íƒ'입ë‹ë‹¤. ëí•' ê·¸ë ‡ê¸° 때문에 ì 'ê° ë´¤ì'때ëŠ-- 남북í•'ì'´ 함ê>>해ì' ìžì‹ ë'¤ì' ë"´ë‹¤ 중ìš--í•' 주체ë' 만ë'¤ ì ìžëŠ-- ê¸°íšŒê° ìžë‹¤ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ì'´ë¥¼ 통해 다른 êµ­ê°ë'¤ì'´ ë°ê" 당기ëŠ--데 ìžì–´ì' í•'êµ­ì'¸ë'¤ì' 스스ë' ë"´ë‹¤ 자ì' ë'ì›Œì§ ì ìžë‹¤ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ê"¼ì—° 중국 ê°ì' 경우에ëŠ-- í•'êµ­ì' 통ì'¼ì' ì›í• ê¹Œìš--? ì ëŠ-- 중국ì'´ í•'êµ­ì' 통ì'¼ì' 원í•ì§ 않ëŠ--다ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. 다만, 중국ì' í재 ì²´ì 'ì' ì•ì •ë§Œ ìžë‹¤ê" í•'다ë(C)´ í재 ë¶ë‹¨ 상íƒ'에 ëŒí•´ì'ë ë§Œì±ì' í• ê²ƒìž…ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ë ‡ë‹¤ë(C)´ ê"¼ì—° ì'¼ë"¸ì' í•'êµ­ì' 통ì'¼ì' ì›í• ê¹Œìš--? ì•ë¬´ë ì•ë² ì´'ë...¬ê° 어ë–>>게 ìƒ'각í•ëŠ--ì§ëŠ-- ì•Œì§ ëª>>í•ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ë--°ë'¼ì' í•'êµ­ì'¸ë'¤ì' ìžì‹ ì' 역사ì ìžì‹ ì' 운명ì' 스스ë' 만ë'¤ ì ìžëŠ-- ê¸°íšŒê° ìžë‹¤ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤.]
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ê·¸ë ‡ë‹¤ë(C)´ 사ë'' ëìž… ì'´ì 에 남북ê´ê" ê°'ì ì'´ ë-- í•ìì ì'´ë‹¤ ì'´ë ‡ê²Œ ë"´ì‹ 단 말ì--ì'´ì‹ ê°ìš--.
[ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸/ì 주í•' 미국ëŒì‚¬ : ì, ê·¸ë ‡ìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ì ëŠ-- ê·¸ë ‡ê²Œ ìƒ'각ì' í•ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. 물ë ì 'ê° ì‚¬ë''에 ëŒí•' ì 문ê°ëŠ-- ì•ë‹ë‹ë‹¤. ì–´ë– í•' 긴장ì'´ ì´ìž¬í•ê²Œ ë ë•Œ 긴장ì' 상ì‡í•ê¸° ì'해ì' íŠ¹ì • ë¬´ê¸°ê° í•ìš--í•ë‹¤ë'¼ê" í•ëŠ-- 사ê" ë°(C)ì‹'ì' ë"´ì—¬ì£¼ëŠ-- í•' 징í›ê° 사ë''ë'¼ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ì§ê¸ì'´ì•¼ë§ë' ì ì  남í•'ê"¼ 북í•'ì'´ í--해를 ì‹'작해야 í• ì‹'ê¸°ê° ë¬´ë¥´ì'µì—다ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤.]
[앵ì>>¤]
ì ë§ì§ë§‰ ì§ë¬¸ìž…ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ë ê·¸ ì ëŒì‚¬ê>>ì'ëŠ-- ì²'ì•í•¨ 문ì '에 ì'문ì' ì '기í•ê±°ë‚ 햇ë"•ì •ì±…ì' ì§ì§í•¨ì'¼ë'써 í•'êµ­ 내ì' ë"´ì ì§ìì'¼ë' ë¶í°ëŠ-- 때ë'ëŠ-- ì…북주ì'자다 ë'¼ëŠ-- ë¹íŒë 받습ë‹ë‹¤.
[ëëë'' ê·¸ë ê·¸/ì 주í•' 미국ëŒì‚¬ : ì ë ì•Œê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. í•ì§ë§Œ ì ëŠ-- ì'´ëŸ° ì'´ì•¼ê¸°ë¥¼ ë'¤ì' 때ë§ë‹¤ ê·¸ë'¤ê"¼ 싸우기ë"´ë‹¤ëŠ-- ëŒí--를 í•ë ¤ê" í•ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ëí•' ì ëŠ-- ê·¸ë¶ë'¤ì—ê²Œ 1973ë… ë‹¹ì‹' í•'êµ­ì' 모습ì' 상기ì‹'ì¼' ë''ë...½ë‹ë‹¤. 당ì‹' ì 'ê° í•'êµ­ CIAì§ë¶ìž¥ì'¼ë' 근무í–ê" , í•'êµ­ì' 중ì•ì •ë"´ë¶ìž¥ì' ì'´í›ë'½ì'´ì—습ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ 당ì‹'에 ê¹ëŒì¤‘ ë‚(C)ì¹ì‚¬ê±´ì'´ ìžì—ê" , ëí•' ë°ëžì' ì'¼ì'¼ì¼°ë‹¤ê" ë명ì' ì'´ ì'울ëŒí•êµ 교ìëŠ-- ê" 문사를 당í–습ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ë...¬ê" ëí•' ë¹ë°ìŠ¤ëŸ¬ìš´ 핵무기 ê°'ë°' í--ë'그램ì'´ ì‹'작됐습ë‹ë‹¤.
ì ëŠ-- í재 북í•'에ì' 벌어ì§ê" ìžëŠ-- 상í(C)ì'´ ì 'ê° ë§ì--ë''ë...° ê"¼ê±° 남í•'에ì' ë²Œì–´ì§ ìƒí(C)ê"¼ 크게 ë‹¤ë¥´ì§ ì•Šë‹¤ê" ìƒ'각í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ëì• 남í•'ê"¼ 미국 ê°ì' ê´ê"ê° ì–´ë–>>게 ë"í–ëŠ--ì§ ë"´ê²Œ ëë(C)´ ì ëŠ-- 우ë...¬ì 북í•'ê"¼ì' ê´ê"ë ì' 사í•ê²Œ ë°'ì í• ì ìžì' 것ì'´ë'¼ê" ìƒ'각í•ê" ìžìŠµë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ë...¬ê" ì ëŠ-- ì…북주ì'자ëŠ-- ì•ë‹ë‹ë‹¤. 북í•'에ì' 벌어ì§ê" ìžëŠ-- 상í(C)에 ëŒí•´ì' 북í•'ì' ëŒì‹ 해ì' 사ê"¼í•'ë‹¤ê±°ë‚ í• ìƒ'각ì' ì í 없습ë‹ë‹¤. í•ì§ë§Œ 우ë...¬ê° 상ëŒë°(C)ê"¼ 싸우길 ì›ì¹ ì•ŠëŠ--다ê" í•'다ë(C)´ 상ëŒë°(C)ê"¼ ëŒí--를 해야 í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤. ê·¸ë...¬ê" ëŒí--를 통해ì' í•'êµ­ì'´ ê·¸ëž¬ë ê²ƒì²ëŸ¼ ëì›ì'´ ë ì ìžëŠ-- ë°(C)ì‹'ì'¼ë' 북í•'ì' ì²´ì 'ê° ë"í--ëëë' ëìì¤ì•¼ í•(C)ë‹ë‹¤.]
[앵ì>>¤]
ë¤ ì—¬ê¸°ê¹Œì§ ì§í–‰í•ê² 습ë‹ë‹¤. ì¤ëŠ ì¶'연해주ì…--ì' ê" ë§ìŠµë‹ë‹¤.
VIDEO-De Wereld Draait Door - Ali B. zingt met Ruben Annink - Terwijl jullie nog bij me zijn - YouTube
Sun, 24 May 2015 02:23
VIDEO-Video Of Tsarnaev Brothers Around Boylston Street On Day Of Boston Marathon Bombing - YouTube
Fri, 22 May 2015 21:45
VIDEO-Obama Calls Himself 'Honorary Member' of the Jewish Faith | MRCTV
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:21
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Obama: 'My Commitment to Israel's Security Is and Always Will Be Unshakeable'See More at: http://cnsnews.com/news/article/cnsnewscom-staff/obama-my-commitment-israels-security-and-always-will-be-unshakeable
Raw
1,400 prominent men in child sex probe as Home Secretary says it is just 'tip of iceberg' - BelfastTelegraph.co.uk
Sun, 24 May 2015 15:22
Beautiful Mind mathematician killed
Two Britons drowned off Malta
DJ raps with Olly Murs at festival
Scafell dog reunited with owner
The National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC) said they have seen an "unprecedented increase" in the number of reports of abuse in the wake of the 2012 Jimmy Savile scandal.
Laying bare the sheer scale of the task facing them, police estimate they will receive around 116,000 reports of abuse by the end of 2015 - a 71% increase from 2012.
And the claims cut to the very heart of society, with schools, religious institutions, children's homes and sports clubs all implicated.
According to the figures, 1,433 suspects - all believed to be men - have been identified, including 261 "people of public prominence", while 216 are now dead.
Of these prominent figures, 76 are politicians, 135 come from the world of TV, film or radio, 43 are from the music industry and seven are from sport.
Officers have identified 357 different institutions linked to the alleged abuse, including 154 schools, 75 children's homes, 40 religious institutions and nine prisons.
But police, experts in child sex abuse and the Home Secretary Theresa May said the figures are only the "tip of the iceberg". Millions of people in Britain are believed to have suffered sexual abuse.
Chief Constable Simon Bailey, the NPCC's lead for child abuse, said the scale of child abuse is "stark" and "referrals are increasing on an almost daily basis".
He said: "There is no doubt in my mind that the Savile effect has played a significant part in giving victims the confidence to come forward and report abuse.
"But these figures do raise the question, is more abuse being perpetrated? I don't have the evidence at this moment in time to prove this one way or another."
He said no figures are available to give the number of victims, but "it's fair to say that it is going to run into the thousands".
The figures come from a new police co-ordinating hub known as Operation Hydrant, established last summer.
The numbers have been taken from police forces across the UK and refer to reports of abuse, or live investigations into abuse allegedly involving VIPs or people linked to institutions.
The revelations come in the wake of a number of high profile police investigations into historic sex abuse involving celebrities, politicians and clergy.
This includes allegations a VIP paedophile ring involving politicians existed which abused children at the Dolphin Square apartment block in Westminster.
Celebrities including entertainer Rolf Harris (85) and PR guru Max Clifford (72) have been jailed for indecent assaults following investigations by Operation Yewtree - the probe set up after Savile was exposed as a paedophile.
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Latest NOAA mean sea level trend data through 2013 confirms lack of sea level rise acceleration | Watts Up With That?
Sun, 24 May 2015 15:20
UN IPCC AR5 WGI claims of increasing rates of sea level rise from 1971 to 2010 are unsupported
Guest essay by Larry Hamlin
NOAA has released new and updated mean sea level trend data for it's Global Network Stations tide gauge locations which are inclusive of measurement data through 2013 (1),(2).
The data include long time period duration (in excess of 30 years) tide gauge station records covering the Hawaiian Islands, Alaska and the Pacific, Gulf Coast and Atlantic coastline regions of the U.S. as well as many other global wide coastal locations. This latest NOAA data shows unchanging linear trends in the rate of sea level rise worldwide with many of these records including 100 year and longer measurement duration periods.
The UN IPCC AR5 WG1 report claims that:
''It is very likely that the mean rate of global averaged sea level rise was 1.7 [1.5 to 1.9] mm yr''1 between 1901 and 2010, 2.0 [1.7 to 2.3] mm yr''1 between 1971 and 2010, and 3.2 [2.8 to 3.6] mm yr''1 between 1993 and 2010. Tide-gauge and satellite altimeter data are consistent regarding the higher rate of the latter period. It is likely that similarly high rates occurred between 1920 and 1950.'' (3)
As discussed in detail below the latest mean sea level rise trend data from NOAA simply does not support IPCC assertions that mean sea level rise trends are increasing since 1971. The IPCC report describes the fact that individual location tide gauge measurement values can vary significantly from global average values (4) generally because of the consequences of location specific topography and geology related impacts.
But what the UN IPCC AR5 WG1 report completely fails to address is the fact that the long duration period NOAA mean sea level trend data behavior represent constant and unchanging linear records over time which present major challenges to IPCC claims of increasing sea level rise rates since 1971. The NOAA data is simply unsupportive of IPCC claims of increasing rates of sea level rise in recent decades.
Furthermore the unchanging and constant linear NOAA mean sea level trend records from worldwide tide gauge station data versus the UN claims of increasing rates of sea level rise based on satellite sea level data suggests the latter outcome is driven by anomalous analytical artifacts associated with the measurement and measurement analysis methodology not reflective of real world outcomes.
Since Obama and his ''science?'' advisers have decided to assert man made CO2 emissions driven sea level rise climate fear claims in speeches (5),(6) involving New York (Hurricane Sandy increased flooding impacts), Virginia and Florida (both with regard to increased high tide flooding impacts) it seems appropriate to examine in more detail the latest NOAA updated mean sea level trend data addressing the various coastline regions of the United States.
Starting with the Hawaiian Islands, the birthplace of Obama, we see below the primary long duration NOAA tide gauge station records at Honolulu and Hilo showing completely unchanging linear rates of sea level rise measuring between 6 to 13 inches per century (7). These NOAA records are presented in map location format and individually for ease of review. NOAA records show no increasing sea level rise acceleration in the Hawaiian Islands refuting claims that man made CO2 emissions are increasing rates of sea level rise here or in fact anyplace else on the globe.
Moving next to Alaska the primary long term NOAA tide gauge locations are shown for Adak Island, Seward, Sitka and Ketchikan (8). All of these records reflect constant linear decreasing rates of sea level rise driven by tectonic uplift forces which dominate this region (9). The tide gauge records of Adak and Seward show large step change impacts caused by the major earthquakes of 1958 (magnitude 7.3) and 1964 (magnitude 9.2) respectively at these locations. Man made CO2 emissions have no bearing on sea level rise impacts in Alaska.
The Pacific, Gulf Coast and Atlantic regions of the continental U.S. are shown next with primary long duration period NOAA tide gauge data reflecting unchanging linear rates of sea level rise varying between 3 to 12 inches per century (10) at these locations. Two outliers exist in this data at Astoria, Oregon and Galveston Pier 21, Texas. Astoria is experiencing constant linear declining rates of sea level rise driven by tectonic uplift forces (11) and Galveston is experiencing constant linear rates of sea level rise of about 25 inches per century driven by regional land subsidence due to long term oil and gas extraction (11).
There is simply nothing in these NOAA long duration mean sea level trend data records that supports claims that man made CO2 emissions are accelerating sea level rise at U.S. locations. Without belaboring the point the same holds true for locations worldwide as demonstrated by the latest NOAA global wide mean sea level trend data.
Obama made alarmist and absurd remarks at a recent address (6) claiming that man made CO2 emissions were contributing to sea level increases at Norfolk, Virginia and Miami, Florida such that high tides at these cities were causing increased flooding.
Shown below is the NOAA primary tide gauge data for Florida (12) for Pensacola, Key West, Miami and Mayport. The Miami sea level trend data terminates in about 1983 but the 50 year record up to that time is an unchanging linear record with a rate of increase of about 9 inches per century. The NOAA long period duration mean sea level trend records for the other Florida locations show similar rates of unchanging linear increasing sea level trends as Miami. There is simply nothing in the NOAA mean sea level trend data that supports Obama's ridiculous remarks about Miami's man made CO2 emissions caused increased flooding.
Obama's equally ridiculous and absurd remarks about man made CO2 emissions caused increased flooding at high tide in Norfolk, Virginia were well addressed at WUWT (13). Shown below are the NOAA mean sea level trend data for Sewells Point and Portsmouth, Virginia which are both located very near Norfolk (14). Both records are unchanging linear trends with the Portsmouth 50 year long record terminating in about 1988. This region is significantly impacted by subsidence which contributes about 60% of the 17 inch per century linear rate of sea level rise at Sewells Point. NOAA data does not support claims that man made CO2 emissions are causing increased flooding at high tide in Norfolk, Virginia.
Obama has also made alarmist remarks alleging that man made CO2 emissions increased sea level rise resulted in greater flooding impacts during Hurricane Sandy in New York City (5). Shown below are NOAA long period duration mean sea level trend records for Kings Point and The Battery, New York and Atlantic City, New Jersey (15). The NOAA data shows clearly that sea level rise trends at these locations are linear and unchanging with the New York locations having rates of sea level increase of about 11 inches per century. The higher rate of sea level rise at Atlantic City location versus New York is the result of land subsidence (16). NOAA data shows that man made CO2 emissions have not caused increases in sea level rise that made Hurricane Sandy's flooding worse.
Climate alarmists including Obama and his ''science?'' advisors are deliberately misleading, some might say lying, to the American people trying to push high cost, bureaucratic and completely ineffectual mandates for CO2 reductions here that won't do anything to impact global climate or reduce the ever increasing global rise in utilizing economically advantageous coal fuel energy.
(1) http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends.html
(2) http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_global.shtml
(3) UN IPCC AR5 WG1 SPM report, Section B.4 Sea Level, pg.11
(4) UN IPCC AR5 WG1, Chapter 13, FAQ 13.1, pg. 1149
(5) http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/02/12/remarks-president-state-union-address
(6) http://www.ocregister.com/articles/applause-618293-going-climate.html
(7) Hawaii: Honolulu,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=1612340
Hilo, http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=1617760
(8) Alaska: Adak,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9461380
Seward, http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9455090
Sitka,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9451600
Ketchikan,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9450460
(9) http://gji.oxfordjournals.org/content/158/3/1118.full
(10) Continental U.S.
Seattle, Washington:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9447130
Astoria, Oregon:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9439040
San Francisco, California:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9414290
Los Angeles, California:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9410660
San Diego, California:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9410170
Galveston Pier 21, Texas:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8771450
Pensacola, Florida:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8729840
Key West, Florida:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8724580
Charleston, South Carolina:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8665530
Washington DC:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8594900
The Battery, New York:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8518750
Portland, Maine:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8418150
(11)
http://books.google.com/books?id=NsqQrlAbHv0C&pg=PA22&lpg=PA22&dq=juneau,+al
(12) Florida:
Pensacola,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8729840
Key West,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8724580
Miami,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8724170
Mayport,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8720218
(13)
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/06/01/making-sense-of-senseless-sea-level-scares-in-norfolk-virginia-60-of-the-rise-is-from-subsidence/
(14) Virginia,
Sewells point,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8638610
Portsmouth,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8638660
(15) New York:
Kings Point,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8516945
The Battery,
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8518750
Atlantic City, New Jersey:
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=8534720
(16) http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/BF02574663
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The US just declassified al-Qaeda's job application form. It's bizarrely corporate. - Vox
Sun, 24 May 2015 15:17
Who knew good penmanship was a requirement for joining al-Qaeda?
The US government recently released a slew of documents recovered from Osama bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad, and among them was this application to join the terrorist organization.
The application is surprising in its banality. It instructs applicants to "please write clearly and legibly," before proceeding with a series of questions that are bizarrely similar to those found in any ordinary job or college application. It reads as if it were created by management consultants '-- jihad by way of McKinsey-optimized hiring processes.
Applicants apparently needed to be goal-oriented: "What objectives would you would like to accomplish on your jihad path?"
And they should also be well-rounded: "Do you have any hobbies or pastimes?"
The application even manages to make suicide bombings seem like just another rung on the corporate ladder. "Do you wish to become a suicide bomber?" it asks casually, after a series of questions about travel methods. And later it asks whom the organization should contact "in case you become a martyr," providing blanks for an address and telephone number, with all the offhand ease of any workplace asking employees to provide an emergency contact.
The corporate tone of the application is jarringly amusing, but it also hints at a larger truth: a terrorist organization like al-Qaeda is a large bureaucratic organization, albeit one in the "business" of mass-murdering innocent people. Given bin Laden's brutality, it's easy to imagine him as nothing more than an ultra-violent supervillain, but the documents released today suggest he was often more like a harried CEO, focused on recruitment, strategic partnerships with other groups, and "lessons learned" following failed operations.
Obama signs Iran nuclear bill into law
Sun, 24 May 2015 15:01
US President Barack Obama has signed into law a bill that would allow Congress to review and potentially reject any final nuclear agreement with Iran.
The Iran Nuclear Review Act of 2015 was signed on Friday.
The legislation overwhelmingly passed the House of Representatives and Senate earlier this month.
The measure will allow for a 30-day review of any final nuclear deal with Iran.
During the reviewing period, Obama would be able to waive those Iran sanctions, which were imposed by the executive branch. However, the president would have to leave in place sanctions that Congress had previously drafted.
The bill would also force the Obama administration to certify, on a regular basis, that Iran is abiding by the terms of any nuclear deal.
The US and its negotiating partners reached a framework nuclear agreement with Iran in Switzerland on April 2.
Tehran and the P5+1 group '' the US, Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany '' are currently working to draw up a final accord by the end of June.
During a speech earlier on Friday, President Obama reassured American Jews that he still fully supports Israel.
''Our commitment to Israel's security and my commitment to Israel's security is and always will be unshakable,'' he said, adding that not doing so would be a ''moral failing'' on the part of him and his country.
He made the comments in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month at Adas Israel, Washington's most prominent conservative synagogue.
AGB/AGB
Syria says Islamic State executes hundreds in Palmyra | Reuters
Sun, 24 May 2015 15:01
Ruins are pictured in the historical city of Palmyra, May 13, 2010.
Reuters/Mohamed Azakir
BEIRUT Islamic State fighters have executed at least 400 people in Palmyra since capturing the ancient Syrian city four days ago, Syrian state media said on Sunday.
It was not immediately possible to verify the account, but it was consistent with reports by activists that the Islamist fighters had carried out executions since capturing the city from government troops.
The militants seized the city of 50,000 people, site of some of the world's most extensive and best preserved ancient Roman ruins, on Wednesday, days after also capturing the city of Ramadi in neighboring Iraq.
The two near simultaneous victories were Islamic State's biggest successes since a U.S.-led coalition began an air war against the fighters last year, and have forced an examination of whether the strategy is working.
The Sunni Muslim militants have proclaimed a caliphate to rule over all Muslims from territory they hold in both Syria and Iraq. They have a history of carrying out mass killings in towns and cities they capture, and of destroying ancient monuments which they consider evidence of paganism.
"The terrorists have killed more than 400 people.. and mutilated their bodies, under the pretext that they cooperated with the government and did not follow orders," Syria's state news agency said, citing residents inside the city.
It added that dozens of those killed were state employees, including the head of nursing department at the hospital and all her family members.
Islamic State supporters have posted videos on the Internet they say show fighters going room to room in government buildings searching for government troops and pulling down pictures of President Bashar al-Assad and his father.
Activists have said on social media that hundreds of bodies, believed to be government loyalists, were in the streets.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors violence in the country with a network of sources on the ground, says that some people were beheaded in the town since it fell but has not given an estimate for the toll among civilians.
It says at least 300 soldiers were killed in the days of fighting before the city was captured.
"A bigger number of troops have disappeared and it is not clear where they are," Rami Abdulrahman from the Observatory told Reuters.
TROOPS EVACUATE HOSPITAL
Islamic State is the most powerful of countless mainly Sunni Muslim groups fighting against the government of President Assad, a member of the Shi'ite-derived Alawite sect. The four-year-old civil war has killed a quarter of a million people and driven nearly 8 million from their homes.
Western countries and their Arab allies are bombing Islamic State but supporting other anti-Assad forces elsewhere in the country, where government troops have lost territory in recent months.
Dozens of Syrian troops evacuated a strategically-located position inside a hospital in Idlib province in the northwest of the country last week, where they had held out since April under siege.
Syrian state television said on Sunday its air force had killed 300 insurgents in strikes that broke the siege of the Jisr al-Shughour hospital. The al Qaeda-linked Nusra Front, an insurgent group involved in the offensive in the area, said the government forces had fled.
State television aired footage on Sunday showing wounded soldiers arriving at another hospital in the nearby coastal area, stronghold of Assad's supporters.
The Observatory said at least 261 soldiers including 90 officers had been killed in the past month. The toll includes the head of special forces, General Muheiddeine Mansour.
Assad has lost large parts of Idlib province to insurgents since late March, when the provincial capital fell. Assad had himself publicly addressed the situation at Jisr al-Shughour hospital this month, saying the army would reinforce the besieged troops there he described as heroes.
(Reporting by Mariam Karouny; editing by Peter Graff)
Snow in New England for Memorial Day weekend
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:56
(C) Via twitter@KeithCarsonPortage Lake, Maine
The start to the Memorial Day weekend, which is the traditional start to summer, was greeted with a reminder of winter in some areas of northern New England.Snow came down heavy at times Saturday morning in northern New England. Visibility dropped to a quarter mile at times due to the heavy snow.
The snow was due to a cold upper-level low that moved through the region. Light rain changed to snow in spots early Saturday morning as temperatures continued to plummet. High temperatures on Friday afternoon reached the 50s and 60s but dropped to the 30s and 40s by sunrise on Saturday.
Below is a picture from Portage Lake, in northern Maine, from Saturday morning.
One inch of snow accumulated in Presque Isle, Maine and 5.2 inches was reported near Portage, Maine.
The snow this morning is the second latest measurable snow on record in Caribou, Maine. The latest measurable snowfall in Caribou is 0.2 inches on May 25, 1974.
Chilly Start to the Holiday WeekendTemperatures dropped into the 30s for parts of northern New England and Upstate New York on Saturday morning as high pressure moved into the region from Canada. Frost and freeze warnings were issued for Friday night and Saturday morning across portions of the Northeast.
A record low was even set in Glens Falls, New York when the temperature fell to 31 degrees.
It was even colder on Mount Washington in New Hampshire where temperatures bottomed out at 10 degrees with a wind chill of 18 degrees below zero when a wind gust of 68 mph was reported. Snow was also reported here overnight.
It will remain cool during the afternoon, with high temperatures up to 10 degrees below where they should be for this time of year. Winds will be gusty at times which will make if feel even cooler.
The good news is that this will not last long as a significant warming trend is on the way. Northern New England will go from winter on Saturday morning to summer by Monday.
Skiing for Memorial Day
If you are not quite ready for summer activities yet and have not put your skis away then you may be in luck. Parts of the Rockies and Sierra Mountains have also seen snow recently, which is allowing a few resorts to stay open for skiing this holiday weekend.
Arapahoe Basin in Colorado is open this Memorial Day weekend and has more base to ski on than they did in March. They also reported some fresh snow on Saturday morning.
Mammoth Mountain in California will also be open this Memorial Day weekend due to snow that fell last week. They are offering a ski, bike and golf package.
'Equality' in Ireland as voters back same-sex marriage in referendum
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:55
(C) Reuters / Cathal McNaughtonA same-sex marriage supporter reacts at Dublin Castle in Dublin, Ireland May 23, 2015.
Irish voters have given their resounding support to same-sex marriage in a popular vote that vaults this tiny and once-conservative country to the forefront of the global gay-rights movement.After a referendum on changing the Irish constitution to recognise gay marriage that has dominated discussion here for months and generated huge interest abroad, the official result announced before a cheering crowd in Dublin Castle on Saturday showed that nearly two-thirds of voters of voters backed the measure.
It is the most radical social change Irish voters have ever been asked to approve.
The result means that Ireland is the first country to introduce same-sex marriage through a popular vote rather than through legislation or the courts. It reinforces the diminished role of the Catholic Church in shaping Irish society. It also suggests that social changes under way over the past two decades are more far-reaching than Irish political and religious leaders imagined.
"For me, this is not so much a referendum, it is more a social revolution in Ireland," said Leo Varadkar, the health minister. "It makes us a beacon of equality and liberty for the rest of the world." Diarmuid Martin, the archbishop of Dublin, told RTE the result was "a reality check" for the church in its relations with Irish society.
(C) Reuters / Cathal McNaughtonSame-sex marriage supporters pose for a photograph at Dublin Castle in Dublin, Ireland May 23, 2015.
Campaigners said the key to the outcome was a surge in voting by young people '-- including by young emigrants who returned in large numbers for Friday's referendum vote on an issue that has gripped the nation for months. But they stressed that while the youth vote was essential, the scale of the Yes vote affirmed that a large majority of Irish voters, regardless of their background, were comfortable with the idea of marriage equality.The Yes campaign generated the most effective grassroots movement ever seen in an Irish referendum, with thousands of young people canvassing support door-to-door over many weeks. "We couldn't have won it without young people, but they did not win it by themselves," said Colm O'Gorman, head of Amnesty International in Ireland.
The result challenges the conventional wisdom about Ireland as a country divided between liberal Dublin and a conservative rural heartland, and between a disenchanted young population and more secure older people. Voters appear to have rejected those outdated views and sent a message of a more socially united Ireland ready to embrace equality and civil rights.
The columnist Fintan O'Toole described the result in the Irish Times as "a truly national moment." Aodhn O'R­ordin, the Irish equality minister, told the Financial Times: "This is about a new republic. It was not just a yes, but a resounding yes, for a new, open, equal society."
The introduction of same-sex marriage, which will now require legislation in parliament, will end one of the last areas of discrimination against gay people in Ireland, which has usually been a laggard in introducing liberal social change. Homosexual acts were decriminalised only in 1993, and divorce was introduced two years later '-- after two referendums, and years after similar measures elsewhere in western Europe.
(C) Reuters / Cathal McNaughtonChildren wave rainbow flags as they stand with their same-sex marriage supporting parents at Dublin Castle in Dublin, Ireland May 23, 2015.
The No campaign had insisted that backing the change would "redefine" the traditional Irish Catholic idea of marriage and the family in a way that would be unacceptable to Irish people.The Iona Institute, a family values think-tank that led the No campaign, conceded that proponents of same-sex marriage had won "a handsome victory". But it said it wanted the government to "address the concerns voters on the No side have about the implications [of the vote] for freedom of religion and freedom of conscience."
In the referendum, voters were asked to include a clause in the constitution that reads: "Marriage may be contracted according to law between two people without distinction as to their sex."
Turnout was about 60 per cent of the 3.2m people eligible to vote. That is unusually high for a referendum in Ireland, though it is lower than the turnout usual for general elections. Irish voters are frequently asked to vote in referendums to change the country's written constitution, which dates from 1937.
Comment: "This is about a new republic. It was not just a yes, but a resounding yes, for a new, open, equal society."Meanwhile, institutionalised pedophilia is still prevalent in Ireland as the violent, sexual abusers of children are still protected by the state.
Irish schoolchildren continue to be taught lies about their own history - the Irish Holocaust, or the 'Great Famine' (Irish potato famine), as it is still euphemistically termed.
The greedy bankers who manipulated the Irish Government into a 16 billion dollar bailout in 2008, effectively robbing generations of Irish people, have not been brought to justice, and could be seen on tape laughing about never repaying the bailout money.
Irish police clamp down on water charge protesters, resulting from the severe austerity measures subsequently implemented.
Such emphasis on 'openness and equality' on gay marriage in Ireland - but what about these other issues?
Washington Blows Itself Up With Its Own Bomb | New Eastern Outlook
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:53
These are sad days in Washington and Wall Street. The once unchallenged sole Superpower at the collapse of the Soviet Union some quarter century ago is losing its global influence so rapidly that most would not have predicted anything comparable six months ago. The key actor who has catalyzed a global defiance of Washington as Sole Superpower is Vladimir Putin, Russia's President. This is the real background to the surprise visit of US Secretary of State John Kerry to Sochi to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and then a four hour talk with ''Satan'' himself, Putin.
Far from a ''reset'' try, Washington's hapless geopolitical strategists are desperately trying to find a better way to bring the Russian Bear to her knees.
A flash back to December 2014 is instructive to understand why the US Secretary of State holds out an apparent olive branch to Russia's Putin at this juncture. At that point, Washington appeared about to pin Russia to the ground, with its precision targeted financial sanctions and its deal with Saudi Arabia to collapse oil prices. In mid-December the Ruble was in free fall against the dollar. Oil prices were similarly plummeting down to $45 a barrel from $107 only six months earlier. As Russia is strongly dependent on oil and gas export revenues for its state finances, and Russian companies held huge dollar debt obligations abroad, the situation was bleak as seen from inside the Kremlin.
Here fate, as it were, intervened in an unexpected way (at least by the USA architects of the financial warfare and oil collapse strategy). Not only was John Kerry's September 2014 deal with ailing Saudi King Abdullah delivering heavy pain in the Russian finances. It was also threatening an explosion of an estimated $500 billion in high-risk-high-yield ''junk'' bonds, debt that the US shale oil industry had taken on from Wall Street banks in the past five years to finance the much-touted US shale oil revolution that briefly propelled the USA ahead of Saudi Arabia as the world's largest oil producer.
US strategy backfires
What Kerry missed in his clever Saudi horse trading was the sly double agenda of the Saudi royals. They had earlier made clear they did not at all want their role as world premier oil producer and market king to be undercut by an upstart US shale oil industry. They were happy to give Russia and also Iran pain. But their central aim was to kill the US shale oil rivals. Their shale projects were calculated when oil was $100 a barrel, less than a year ago. Their minimum price of oil to avoid bankruptcy in most cases was $65 a barrel to $80 a barrel. Shale oil extraction is unconventional and more costly than conventional oil. Douglas-Westwood, an energy advisory firm, estimates that nearly half of the US oil projects under development need oil prices greater than $120 per barrel in order to achieve positive cash flow.
By end of December a chain-reaction series of shale oil bankruptcies threatened to detonate a new financial tsunami at a time the carnage from the 2007-2008 securitization financial crisis was anything but resolved. Even a few high-profile shale oil junk bond defaults would have triggered a domino-style panic in the US $1.9 trillion junk bond debt market, no doubt setting off a new financial meltdown that the over-stressed US Government and Federal Reserve could scarcely handle. It could have threatened the end of the US dollar as global reserve currency.
Suddenly in the first days of January, IMF head Lagarde was praising Russia's central bank for its ''successful'' handling of the ruble crisis. The US Treasury Office of Financial Terrorism quietly eased off on further attacks on Russia while the Obama Administration pretended it was ''World War III as usual'' against Putin. The US oil strategy had inflicted far more damage on the US than on Russia.
USA Russia policy failure
Not only that. Washington's brilliant total war strategy against Russia initiated with the November 2013 Kiev EuroMaidan coup d'etat has become a manifest, utter failure that is creating the worst imaginable geopolitical nightmare for Washington.
Far from reacting as a helpless victim and cowering in fear before the US efforts to isolate Russia, Putin initiated a brilliant series of foreign economic, military and political initiatives that by April added up to the seed crystal of a new global monetary order and a new Eurasian economic colossus to rival US sole superpower hegemony. He challenged the very foundations of the US-dominated dollar system and her global world order everywhere from India to Brazil to Cuba to Greece to Turkey. Russia and China signed mammoth new energy deals that allowed Russia to redirect its energy strategy from the west where the EU and Ukraine, both under strong Washington pressure, had sabotaged Russian EU gas deliveries via Ukraine. The EU, again under intense Washington pressure threw one monkey wrench after another into Gazprom's South Stream natural gas pipeline project to southern Europe.
Rather than be defensive, Putin shocked the EU during his visit to Turkey and meeting with President Erdogan when he announced on December 1 that he had cancelled Gazprom's South Stream project. He announced he would seek an agreement with Turkey to deliver Russian gas to the Greek border. From there, if the EU wants the gas they have to finance their own pipelines. The EU bluff was called. Their future gas needs were more remote than ever.
The EU sanctions on Russia also backfired as Russia retaliated with a ban on EU food imports and a turn to Russian self-sufficiency. And billions of dollars of contracts or exports from German firms like Siemens or France's Total were suddenly in limbo. Boeing saw large aircraft orders to Russian carriers cancelled. Russia announced it was turning to national suppliers in production of critical defense components.
Then Russia became an ''Asian'' charter member of China's remarkably successful new Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) designed to finance its ambitious New Silk Road Economic Belt high-speed rail network across Eurasia into the EU. Rather than isolate Russia, US policy backfired badly as, despite strong pressures, US staunch allies including Britain, Germany, France and South Korea all rushed to join the new AIIB.
Further, at their May meeting in Moscow, China's President Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin announced that the China silk road rail infrastructure would be fully integrated with Russia's Eurasian Economic Union, a staggering boost not only to Russia bit to Eurasia into China, a region containing the majority of the world's population.
In short, by the point John Kerry was told to swallow hard and fly to Sochi, hat in hand, to offer some kind of peace pipe to Putin, US leading circles, the American Oligarchs had realized their aggressive neo-conservative warhawks like Victoria ''F**k the EU'' Nuland of the State Department and Defense Secretary Ash Carter were propelling the creation of a new alternative world structure that could spell the ruin of the entire post-Bretton Woods Washington-dominated Dollar System. Oops.
In addition, by forcing her European ''allies'' to toe the US anti-Putin line, to the severe detriment of EU economic and political interests, alone her vigorous participation in the New Silk Road Economic Belt project and the economic boom in investment that will bring with it, Washington's neo-conservatives have managed also to accelerate a probable parting of the ways between Germany, France and other Continental European powers to Washington.
Finally, as the whole world (including even Western anti-Atlantists) came to view Putin as the symbol of resistance to the American dominance. This perception first emerged at the time of the Snowden story but has solidified after the sanctions and blockade. Such perception, by the way, plays a significant psychological role in the geopolitical struggle '' the presence of such a symbol opens up novel venues in the fight against the hegemony.
For all these reasons, Kerry was clearly sent to Sochi to sniff out possible soft points for a renewed assault in the future. He told the rogue US-backed lunatics in Kiev to cool it and respect the Minsk cease-fire accords. The demand came as a shock in Kiev. US-installed Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk told French TV, ''Sochi is definitely not the best resort and not the best place to have a chat with Russian president and Russian foreign minister.''
At this juncture the only thing clear is that Washington has finally realized the stupidity of its provocations against Russia in Ukraine and globally. What their next scheme will entail is not yet clear. Clear is that a dramatic policy shift has been ordered on the Obama administration from the highest levels of US institutions. Nothing else could explain the dramatic shift. If sanity replaces the neo-con insanity remains to be seen. Clear is that Russia and China are resolute about never again leaving themselves at the mercy of an incalculable sole superpower. Kerry's pathetic attempt at a second Russia ''reset'' in Sochi will bring Washington little at this point. The US Oligarchy, as Shakespeare's Hamlet put it, is being ''hoist with their own petard,'' as the bomb maker blows himself up with his own bomb.
F. William Engdahl is strategic risk consultant and lecturer, he holds a degree in politics from Princeton University and is a best-selling author on oil and geopolitics, exclusively for the online magazine ''New Eastern Outlook''.
Unites States' spying affair with Germany is turning sour
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:46
(C) Reuters / Thomas PeterSecurity officers stand outside the U.S. Embassy in Berlin
The US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has ordered a review of cooperation between the National Security Agency (NSA) and the German intelligence agency BND, Bild newspaper reports.Citing an unnamed source in US intelligence, Bild says Clapper is unhappy with Berlin's "inability to contain secret data". According to the report, the Bundestag committee on investigating the recent secret service scandals handed some secret documents to the media.
For the US it is "more dangerous than what Snowden did," Bild quoted the source as saying, referring to former NSA contractor Edward Snowden's revelations of worldwide surveillance.
Now, the US secret services are reviewing the areas in which cooperation with the BND can be reduced or ended altogether, the paper reports. Several joint projects have already been canceled, it says.
Both the German government and the US embassy in Berlin refused to comment on the report.
In April, German media reported that over the past decade, the BND helped NSA in spying all over Europe. The US agency sent its German colleagues so-called "selectors", which included IP addresses, emails, and phone numbers guiding what targets must be spied on.
One report suggested that the BND sends about 1.3 billion pieces of phone and text data to NSA per month.
The public outrage over those allegations and the subsequent investigation cost Chancellor Angela Merkel about a third of her approval rating. In late April, her government was accused of lying to parliament saying it had no knowledge of Washington's surveillance activities in Germany.
Russia will call in Ukraine's $3 Billion in debt obligations should Kiev go into default
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:46
(C) RIA Novosti / Yury KochetkovRussian President Vladimir Putin (R) and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. Prime Minister Medvedev charged with enforcing repayment of $3 billion in Eurobonds
Vladimir Putin instructed Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to assume control of Ukraine's repayment of its $3-billion debt in Eurobonds that Russia bought in 2013.Vladimir Putin is one of those rare world leaders that talks straight, and call it like it is. The man is pure realpolitik to the max, and as red pill as you can get.
While the western financial oligarchs fiddle around, trying to find creative wording for what is happening to Ukraine's recent "debt payment moratorium" announcement (call it something, but don't use the word default)...Russia's President breaks it down for all to digest...
"This de facto announcement of a looming default demonstrates that the level of responsibility and professionalism [of the country's leadership] appears to be low, despite the fact that the country is being ran from the outside."
Default...hell yes, let's not kid ourselves.The icing on the cake..."country is being ran from the outside." Yeah that means you President Pyatt, Queen Nuland and all the CIA analysts currently working out of the Kiev SBU government offices.
Who is to blame for Ukraine's utter and complete meltdown?
All the fools and turncoats who gathered at Maidan (paid by Soros and unpaid as well), who sold out their country for their individual greedy desires. They let the vultures take over and have now destroyed their entire history, present and future.
You all got played...big time!
RT reports...
Ukraine's statement regarding a possible default is a consequence of Kiev's low level of professionalism, said Russian President Vladimir Putin, ordering the Finance Ministry to sort out the issue of Ukraine's debt to Russia.
"The announcement of the upcoming default shows a level of responsibility and professionalism which is apparently not high," Putin said at a meeting with members of the government.
"As far as I understand, the IMF [International Monetary Fund] doesn't provide any loans to countries that are in a situation of default or bankruptcy," he added addressing Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, requesting that he hold consultations on Ukraine's debt to the Russian Federation.According to the conditions of the loan, Russia is already within its rights to demand early repayment of Ukraine's debt, but has not done so at the request of Kiev and the IMF, Putin said, adding that Russian banks have issued around $25 billion in loans to Ukrainian creditors.
"We have long had the right to request an early repayment of these funds, bearing in mind that under the terms of our agreement signed according to European law, there is a right to demand early repayment if the total public debt of Ukraine exceeds 60 percent," he said. "However, at the request of our Ukrainian partners and the IMF, we do not exercise this right. We do not want to aggravate the economic situation of our partners and neighbors, which is already complicated," he concluded.
The Finance Ministry hasn't yet noted any violations of the terms of the loan agreement with Ukraine, but if they appear, Russia is ready to resolve the issue in court, Siluanov said.
"Until now, Ukraine has fulfilled all its obligations on debt service. The last payment was made in February this year; the next payment in the amount of $75 million is due on June 20. There have been no violations of the agreement, except for covenants," he said.
"If we see a violation of the commitments that Ukraine took upon itself when we invested our resources in the bonds of its government, we will request a judicial procedure in order to protect our interests," he concluded.
On May 19, the Ukrainian government adopted a law, valid until 1 July 2016, which gives it the power to declare a moratorium on some loan repayments. The country's prime minister, Arseny Yatsenyuk, said that suspension of payments will only be applicable to private loans. However, Ukraine continues to consider its $3 billion debt to Russia private, a position that Moscow completely refutes.
Battle of Palmyra - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:40
This article is about the World War II battle of Palmyra. For the Syrian Civil War battle, see Battle of Palmyra (2015).The Battle of Palmyra (1 July 1941) was part of the Allied invasion of Syria during the Syria-Lebanon campaign in World War II. British mechanized cavalry and an Arab Legion desert patrol broke up a Vichy French mobile column northeast of the city of Palmyra. They captured four officers and 60 men, which provoked the surrender of the Vichy garrison at Palmyra.
Background[edit]In 1941 the Vichy French had substantial forces in the region and had allowed their air bases to be used as staging posts by the Germans to send aircraft to take part in the Anglo-Iraqi War. They had also allowed the Germans to use the railway system to send arms and ammunition to Iraq.[1] On 8 June 1941 the Allies had launched two northerly attacks from Palestine and Trans-Jordan into Lebanon and Syria to prevent any further interference to Allied interests in the region.
By late June Damascus had been taken and the Allied campaign commander, Henry Maitland Wilson was ready to launch two further thrusts, this time from western Iraq to complete the capture of Syria.
An expanded Brigade group called Habforce had during the Anglo-Iraqi war advanced across the desert from Trans-Jordan to relieve the British garrison at RAF Habbaniya on the Euphrates River and had then assisted in the taking of Baghdad. This force was now pulled back to the remote part of Iraq near the Trans-Jordan and Syrian borders. It was tasked with advancing northwest to defeat the Vichy French garrison at Palmyra and secure the oil pipeline from Haditha in Iraq to Tripoli on the Lebanon coast.
Habforce was well suited to the task in the desert because of the inclusion in its strength of the battalion-sized Arab Legion Mechanised Regiment, which was made up exclusively of desert-dwelling Bedouin soldiers.
The Palmyra actions[edit]Habforce split into three columns (two to make flanking maneuvers on each side of Palmyra), each one was guided by a detachment from The Arab Legion; they set off on 21 June. A skirmish with pillboxes on the pipeline a few miles east of Palmyra resulted in the element of surprise being lost. Habforce surrounded Palmyra, sending the Arab Legion troops out on wide-ranging desert patrols to protect Habforce's flanks and lines of communication. On 28 June they captured the French fort of Seba' Biyar (roughly 60 miles south-west of Palmyra), the small garrison surrendering without a shot being fired. The next day they occupied Sukhna, some 40 miles north-east of Palmyra, which was not occupied by French troops.[2]
On the morning of 1 July Sukhna was attacked by the Vichy 2nd Light Desert Company. The Arab Legion occupiers had been reinforced by a squadron from 4th Cavalry Brigade's Household Cavalry Regiment and after a sharp battle, the French retreated before an enthusiastic charge by Arab Legion troopers and ended up trapped in a box valley before surrendering.[2]
Whilst hardly the largest battle of the war, its effect was to cause the 3rd Light Desert Company which was garrisoning Palmyra, to lose heart and surrender on the night of 2 July. This freed Habforce to move 40 miles west along the pipeline to Homs and threaten the communications of the Vichy forces fighting the Australian 7th Division on the Lebanon coast.[2]
See also[edit]^Compton Mackenzie, p. 107^ abcSteve RothwellReferences[edit]
Palmyra - Google Maps
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:38
Google MapsHTTP/1.1 200 OK Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 Date: Sun, 24 May 2015 14:38:59 GMT Pragma: no-cache Expires: Fri, 01 Jan 1990 00:00:00 GMT Cache-Control: no-cache, must-revalidate Vary: Accept-Language Content-Encoding: gzip Server: mafe X-XSS-Protection: 1; mode=block X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN Alternate-Protocol: 443:quic,p=1 Transfer-Encoding: chunked
Remarks by the President on Jewish American Heritage Month | The White House
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:22
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
May 22, 2015
Adas Israel CongregationWashington, D.C.
10:57 A.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you so much. (Applause.) Thank you, everybody. (Applause.) Thank you. Well, good morning, everybody!
AUDIENCE: Good morning!
THE PRESIDENT: A slightly early Shabbat Shalom. (Laughter.) I want to thank Rabbi Steinlauf for the very kind introduction. And to all the members of the congregation, thank you so much for such an extraordinary and warm welcome.
I want to thank a couple of outstanding members of Congress who are here. Senator Michael Bennet -- where did Michael Bennet go? There he is. (Applause.) And Representative Sandy Levin, who is here. (Applause.) I want to thank our special envoy to combat anti-Semitism, Ira Forman, for his important work. There he is. (Applause) But as I said, most of all I want to thank the entire congregation of Adas Israel for having me here today.
Earlier this week, I was actually interviewed by one of your members, Jeff Goldberg. (Applause.) And Jeff reminded me that he once called me ''the first Jewish President.'' (Laughter.) Now, since some people still seem to be wondering about my faith -- (laughter) -- I should make clear this was an honorary title. (Laughter.) But I was flattered.
And as an honorary member of the tribe, not to mention somebody who's hosted seven White House Seders and been advised by -- (applause) -- and been advised by two Jewish chiefs of staff, I can also proudly say that I'm getting a little bit of the hang of the lingo. (Laughter.) But I will not use any of the Yiddish-isms that Rahm Emanuel taught me because -- (laughter) -- I want to be invited back. (Laughter.) Let's just say he had some creative new synonyms for ''Shalom.'' (Laughter.)
Now, I wanted to come here to celebrate Jewish American Heritage Month because this congregation, like so many around the country, helps us to tell the American story. And back in 1876, when President Grant helped dedicate Adas Israel, he became the first sitting President in history to attend a synagogue service. And at the time, it was an extraordinarily symbolic gesture -- not just for America, but for the world.
And think about the landscape of Jewish history. Tomorrow night, the holiday of Shavuot marks the moment that Moses received the Torah at Mount Sinai, the first link in a chain of tradition that stretches back thousands of years, and a foundation stone for our civilization. Yet for most of those years, Jews were persecuted -- not embraced -- by those in power. Many of your ancestors came here fleeing that persecution. The United States could have been merely another destination in that ongoing diaspora. But those who came here found that America was more than just a country. America was an idea. America stood for something. As George Washington wrote to the Jews of Newport, Rhode Island: The United States ''gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance.''
It's important for us to acknowledge that too often in our history we fell short of those lofty ideals -- in the legal subjugation of African Americans, through slavery and Jim Crow; the treatment of Native Americans. And far too often, American Jews faced the scourge of anti-Semitism here at home. But our founding documents gave us a North Star, our Bill of Rights; our system of government gave us a capacity for change. And where other nations actively and legally might persecute or discriminate against those of different faiths, this nation was called upon to see all of us as equal before the eyes of the law. When other countries treated their own citizens as ''wretched refuse,'' we lifted up our lamp beside the golden door and welcomed them in. Our country is immeasurably stronger because we did. (Applause.)
From Einstein to Brandeis, from Jonas Salk to Betty Friedan, American Jews have made contributions to this country that have shaped it in every aspect. And as a community, American Jews have helped make our union more perfect. The story of Exodus inspired oppressed people around the world in their own struggles for civil rights. From the founding members of the NAACP to a freedom summer in Mississippi, from women's rights to gay rights to workers' rights, Jews took the heart of Biblical edict that we must not oppress a stranger, having been strangers once ourselves.
Earlier this year, when we marked the 50th anniversary of the march in Selma, we remembered the iconic images of Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel marching with Dr. King, praying with his feet. To some, it must have seemed strange that a rabbi from Warsaw would take such great risks to stand with a Baptist preacher from Atlanta. But Heschel explained that their cause was one and the same. In his essay, ''No Religion is an Island,'' he wrote, ''We must choose between interfaith and inter-nihilism.'' Between a shared hope that says together we can shape a brighter future, or a shared cynicism that says our world is simply beyond repair.
So the heritage we celebrate this month is a testament to the power of hope. Me standing here before you, all of you in this incredible congregation is a testament to the power of hope. (Applause.) It's a rebuke to cynicism. It's a rebuke to nihilism. And it inspires us to have faith that our future, like our past, will be shaped by the values that we share. At home, those values compel us to work to keep alive the American Dream of opportunity for all. It means that we care about issues that affect all children, not just our own; that we're prepared to invest in early childhood education; that we are concerned about making college affordable; that we want to create communities where if you're willing to work hard, you can get ahead the way so many who fled and arrived on these shores were able to get ahead. Around the world, those values compel us to redouble our efforts to protect our planet and to protect the human rights of all who share this planet.
It's particularly important to remember now, given the tumult that is taking place in so many corners of the globe, in one of the world's most dangerous neighborhoods, those shared values compel us to reaffirm that our enduring friendship with the people of Israel and our unbreakable bonds with the state of Israel -- that those bonds, that friendship cannot be broken. (Applause.) Those values compel us to say that our commitment to Israel's security -- and my commitment to Israel's security -- is and always will be unshakeable. (Applause.)
And I've said this before: It would be a moral failing on the part of the U.S. government and the American people, it would be a moral failing on my part if we did not stand up firmly, steadfastly not just on behalf of Israel's right to exist, but its right to thrive and prosper. (Applause.) Because it would ignore the history that brought the state of Israel about. It would ignore the struggle that's taken place through millennia to try to affirm the kinds of values that say everybody has a place, everybody has rights, everybody is a child of God. (Applause.)
As many of you know, I've visited the houses hit by rocket fire in Sderot. I've been to Yad Vashem and made that solemn vow: ''Never forget. Never again.'' When someone threatens Israel's citizens or its very right to exist, Israelis necessarily that seriously. And so do I. Today, the military and intelligence cooperation between our two countries is stronger than ever. Our support of the Iron Dome's rocket system has saved Israeli lives. And I can say that no U.S. President, no administration has done more to ensure that Israel can protect itself than this one. (Applause.)
As part of that commitment, there's something else that the United States and Israel agrees on: Iran must not, under any circumstances, be allowed to get a nuclear weapon. (Applause.) Now, there's a debate about how to achieve that -- and that's a healthy debate. I'm not going to use my remaining time to go too deep into policy -- although for those of you who are interested -- (laughter) -- we have a lot of material out there. (Laughter.) But I do want everybody to just remember a few key things.
The deal that we already reached with Iran has already halted or rolled back parts of Iran's nuclear program. Now we're seeking a comprehensive solution. I will not accept a bad deal. As I pointed out in my most recent article with Jeff Goldberg, this deal will have my name on it, so nobody has a bigger personal stake in making sure that it delivers on its promise. (Applause.) I want a good deal.
I'm interested in a deal that blocks every single one of Iran's pathways to a nuclear weapon -- every single path. A deal that imposes unprecedented inspections on all elements of Iran's nuclear program, so that they can't cheat; and if they try to cheat, we will immediately know about it and sanctions snap back on. A deal that endures beyond a decade; that addresses this challenge for the long term. In other words, a deal that makes the world and the region -- including Israel -- more secure. That's how I define a good deal.
I can't stand here today and guarantee an agreement will be reached. We're hopeful. We're working hard. But nothing is agreed until everything is agreed. And I've made clear that when it comes to preventing Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, all options are and will remain on the table.
Moreover, even if we do get a good deal, there remains the broader issue of Iran's support for terrorism and regional destabilization, and ugly threats against Israel. And that's why our strategic partnership with Israel will remain, no matter what happens in the days and years ahead. And that's why the people of Israel must always know America has its back, and America will always have its back. (Applause.) Now, that does not mean that there will not be, or should not be, periodic disagreements between our two governments. There will be disagreements on tactics when it comes to how to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, and that is entirely appropriate and should be fully aired. Because the stakes are sufficiently high that anything that's proposed has to be subjected to scrutiny -- and I welcome that scrutiny.
But there are also going to be some disagreements rooted in shared history that go beyond tactics, that are rooted in how we might remain true to our shared values. I came to know Israel as a young man through these incredible images of kibbutzim, and Moshe Dayan, and Golda Meir, and Israel overcoming incredible odds in the '67 war. The notion of pioneers who set out not only to safeguard a nation, but to remake the world. Not only to make the desert bloom, but to allow their values to flourish; to ensure that the best of Judaism would thrive. And those values in many ways came to be my own values. They believed the story of their people gave them a unique perspective among the nations of the world, a unique moral authority and responsibility that comes from having once been a stranger yourself.
And to a young man like me, grappling with his own identity, recognizing the scars of race here in this nation, inspired by the civil rights struggle, the idea that you could be grounded in your history, as Israel was, but not be trapped by it, to be able to repair the world -- that idea was liberating. The example of Israel and its values was inspiring.
So when I hear some people say that disagreements over policy belie a general lack of support of Israel, I must object, and I object forcefully. (Applause.) For us to paper over difficult questions, particularly about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict or about settlement policy, that's not a true measure of friendship.
Before I came out here, the Rabbi showed me the room that's been built to promote scholarship and dialogue, and to be able to find how we make our shared values live. And the reason you have that room is because applying those values to our lives is often hard, and it involves difficult choices. That's why we study. That's why it's not just a formula. And that's what we have to do as nations as well as individuals. We have to grapple and struggle with how do we apply the values that we care about to this very challenging and dangerous world.
And it is precisely because I care so deeply about the state of Israel -- it's precisely because, yes, I have high expectations for Israel the same way I have high expectations for the United States of America -- that I feel a responsibility to speak out honestly about what I think will lead to long-term security and to the preservation of a true democracy in the Jewish homeland. (Applause.) And I believe that's two states for two peoples, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security. (Applause.) Just as Israelis built a state in their homeland, Palestinians have a right to be a free people on their land, as well. (Applause.)
Now, I want to emphasize -- that's not easy. The Palestinians are not the easiest of partners. (Laughter.) The neighborhood is dangerous. And we cannot expect Israel to take existential risks with their security so that any deal that takes place has to take into account the genuine dangers of terrorism and hostility.
But it is worthwhile for us to keep up the prospect, the possibility of bridging divides and being just, and looking squarely at what's possible but also necessary in order for Israel to be the type of nation that it was intended to be in its earliest founding. (Applause.)
And that same sense of shared values also compel me to speak out -- compel all of us to speak out -- against the scourge of anti-Semitism wherever it exists. (Applause.) I want to be clear that, to me, all these things are connected. The rights I insist upon and now fight for, for all people here in the United States compels me then to stand up for Israel and look out for the rights of the Jewish people. And the rights of the Jewish people then compel me to think about a Palestinian child in Ramallah that feels trapped without opportunity. That's what Jewish values teach me. That's what the Judeo-Christian tradition teaches me. These things are connected. (Applause.)
And in recent years, we've seen a deeply disturbing rise in anti-Semitism in parts of the world where it would have seemed unthinkable just a few years or decades ago. This is not some passing fad; these aren't just isolated phenomenon. And we know from our history they cannot be ignored. Anti-Semitism is, and always will be, a threat to broader human values to which we all must aspire. And when we allow anti-Semitism to take root, then our souls are destroyed, and it will spread.
And that's why, tonight, for the first time ever, congregations around the world are celebrating a Solidarity Shabbat. It's a chance for leaders to publicly stand against anti-Semitism and bigotry in all of its forms. And I'm proud to be a part of this movement, and I'm proud that six ambassadors from Europe are joining us today. And their presence here -- our presence together -- is a reminder that we are not doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past. (Applause.) Our traditions, our history, can help us chart a better course as long as we are mindful of that history and those traditions, and we are vigilant in speaking out and standing up against what is wrong. It's not always easy, I think, to speak out against what is wrong, even for good people.
So I want to close with the story of one more of the many rabbis who came to Selma 50 years ago. A few days after David Teitelbaum arrived to join the protests, he and a colleague were thrown in jail. And they spent a Friday night in custody, singing Adon Olam to the tune of ''We Shall Overcome.'' And that in and of itself is a profound statement of faith and hope. But what's wonderful is, is that out of respect many of their fellow protestors began wearing what they called ''freedom caps'' -- (laughter) -- yarmulkes -- as they marched.
And the day after they were released from prison, Rabbi Teitelbaum watched Dr. King lead a prayer meeting before crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge. And Dr. King said, ''We are like the children of Israel, marching from slavery to freedom.''
That's what happens when we're true to our values. It's not just good for us, but it brings the community together. (Applause.) Tikkun Olam -- it brings the community together and it helps repair the world. It bridges differences that once looked unbridgeable. It creates a future for our children that once seemed unattainable. This congregation -- Jewish American life is a testimony to the capacity to make our values live. But it requires courage. It requires strength. It requires that we speak the truth not just when it's easy, but when it's hard.
So may we always remember that our shared heritage makes us stronger, that our roots are intertwined. May we always choose faith over nihilism, and courage over despair, and hope over cynicism and fear. As we walk our own leg of a timeless, sacred march, may we always stand together, here at home and around the world.
Thank you. God bless you. God bless the United States of America. Thank you. (Applause.)
END11:26 A.M. EDT
IMF approves three-year US$69.7 million facility for Haiti | Caribbean News Now
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:18
WASHINGTON, USA -- The executive board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a three-year SDR 49.14 million (about US$69.7 million, 60 percent of quota) arrangement under the extended credit facility (ECF) for Haiti on Monday. The approval enables the immediate disbursement of an amount equivalent to SDR 7.02 million (about US$10 million), while the remaining amount will be phased over the duration of the arrangement, subject to semi-annual program reviews.The authorities' ECF-supported program aims to raise Haiti's growth potential and reduce vulnerabilities to shocks, while entrenching macroeconomic stability.Following the executive board's discussion on Haiti, Min Zhu, deputy managing director, and acting chair, made the following statement:
''Haiti's pursuit of macroeconomic stability in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake is commendable -- growth has been positive, inflation has remained moderate, and international reserve levels adequate. Going forward, continued efforts are needed to support sustained and inclusive growth, strengthen institutions and the policy framework, and maintain adequate buffers to absorb shocks.
''The new three-year program supported by the Fund's Extended Credit Facility (ECF) seeks to entrench macroeconomic stability, improve competitiveness to spur inclusive growth, and preserve buffers, through streamlined policies that have full country ownership. Donor support ensures the full financing of the program.
''The program targets a reduction of the non-financial public sector deficit from 7.5 percent in FY2014 to 3.25 percent of GDP in FY2015 and 2.5 percent in the medium term to preserve sustainability. Lower oil prices will facilitate fiscal consolidation (allowing the government to raise fuel taxes and lower electricity subsidies), while preserving pro-poor spending. The adoption of an automatic fuel pricing mechanism will safeguard fuel taxes if oil prices rebound.
''The program aims to preserve price stability. Accordingly, the monetary policy stance will remain tight as needed until fiscal consolidation proceeds to anchor exchange rate expectations. The policy mix seeks to keep international reserves at an appropriate level to ensure adequate buffers.
''The program's structural reform agenda focuses on strengthening competitiveness to foster growth. It tackles deep-seated problems in the electricity sector; supports the authorities' efforts to strengthen property rights; and includes actions to increase policy effectiveness through reforms in tax administration, tax policy and public financial management, as well as improvements in the monetary framework and economic statistics.''
Recent Economic DevelopmentsIn December 2014, Haiti completed the arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF), which helped support positive economic growth and maintain macroeconomic stability after the 2010 earthquake. However, while per capita growth has been positive, it has been insufficient to significantly reduce poverty. Fiscal and external deficits rose to high levels, increasing Haiti's vulnerabilities. Due partly to a difficult socio-political environment, progress on structural reform was limited.
Main Program ObjectivesThe program aims at entrenching macroeconomic stability and at deepening structural reforms, to support sustained and shared growth. The program seeks to maintain buffers in the form of foreign reserves and bank deposits to reduce Haiti's vulnerability to shocks, and to avoid stop-and-go growth dynamics. Real GDP is projected at 3-4 percent over the medium term helped by the implementation of structural and institutional reforms addressing bottlenecks to growth and job creation, including improvements in the business environment and property rights, financial inclusion, and access to available and cheap electricity. Inflation is expected to be contained in the mid-single digits, reflecting prudent fiscal and monetary policies, while gross international reserves would cover between 4 - 5 months of imports.
Fiscal policy aims at placing public debt on a sustainable path and preserving buffers against downside risks. It targets a reduction in the deficit of the non financial public sector to 2.5 percent of GDP in the medium term, while preserving poverty-reducing spending. Fiscal consolidation will result from the elimination of regressive fuel subsidies, the adjustment of investment spending to sustainable levels, and the reduction of quasi-fiscal losses in the electricity sector. In this regard, the revised FY2015 budget includes a strong fiscal adjustment that takes advantage of the low international oil prices. To prevent a reemergence of fuel subsidies if international prices rebound, the authorities have adopted an automatic pricing mechanism for petroleum products, which will reflect international oil prices into domestic fuel prices, while protecting the most vulnerable.
New York Soon to Unveil Fresh Bitcoin Licensing Rules - WSJ
Sun, 24 May 2015 14:16
In one of his final moves as New York's top financial regulator, Benjamin M. Lawsky will soon unveil a set of new licensing rules that could have long-lasting effects on businesses using bitcoin and other virtual currencies.
In doing so, bitcoin advocates fear Mr. Lawsky will cement his reputation for taking tough stands against the financial industry.
Mr. Lawsky, in an interview with The Wall Street Journal, said those fears...
Napa County using facial recognition app to help owners find lost dogs | KRON4.com
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:53
NAPA CO. (BCN) '-- Napa County's animal shelter is using facial recognition technology to find and identify lost pet dogs.
The shelter says it is the first in Northern California to use Finding Rover, a mobile app and website that allows users to find their missing dogs via their smart phone or computer.
The Napa County Animal Shelter has photos and information of lost pets on its website and has been using Finding Rover since May 12, shelter manager Kristin Loomer said.
Dog owners take a front-facing picture of their pet, mark the eyes and nose, and a facial recognition system scans the dog's features and keeps them on file. If the dog is ever lost, its record will be in the system and it will be quickly identified.
The free pet registration process can be done by email and it protects the animal for life.
Finding Rover alerts a large network of dog organizations and members, including veterinarians, shelters, rescue organizations and social media, about lost dogs. The finder of the dog snaps a photo of it and Finding Rover's facial recognition technology does a facial recognition search and contacts the dog's owner.
Finding Rover has found 7 million lost dogs, according to its website.
Finding Rover is available for free at findingrover.com and on iOS and Android devices.
Loomer said the Napa County Animal Shelter updates its list of lost and adoptable dogs daily, but Finding Rover is updated every hour. The Napa shelter has an average of up to 20 dogs up for adoption, and 10-20 dogs that are lost or strays.
''We have a 94 percent live release rate. We place every adoptable animal without time limits,'' Loomer said.
Isis claims it could buy its first nuclear weapon from Pakistan within 12 months
Sat, 23 May 2015 06:50
The hyperbolic article, which the group attributes to the British hostage John Cantlie, claims Isis has transcended its roots as ''the most explosive Islamic 'group' in the modern world'' to evolve into ''the most explosive Islamic movement the modern world has ever seen'' in less than twelve months.
Photojournalist Cantlie is regularly used in the terror group's propaganda and has appeared in a number of videos, including a YouTube series called "Lend Me Your Ears". He has been held a hostage by Isis for more than two years.
John Cantlie has now been held captive for more two years by Isis militants The piece, entitled "The Perfect Storm", describes militant Islamist groups such as Boko Haram, which recently pledged allegiance to Isis, uniting across the Middle East, Africa and Asia to create one global movement.
The article claims this alignment of groups has happened at the sane time as Isis militants have seized ''tanks, rocket launchers, missile systems, anti-aircraft systems,'' from the US and Iran before turning to the subject of more extreme weapons the group is not in possession of - such as nuclear weapons.
''Let me throw a hypothetical operation onto the table,'' the article continues. ''The Islamic State has billions of dollars in the bank, so they call on their wilāyah in Pakistan to purchase a nuclear device through weapons dealers with links to corrupt officials in the region."
It admits that such a scenario is ''far-fetched'' but warns: ''It's the sum of all fears for Western intelligence agencies and it's infinitely more possible today than it was just one year ago.
"And if not a nuke, what about a few thousand tons of ammonium nitrate explosive? That's easy enough to make."
An attack launched by Isis against America would ridicule "the attacks of the past".
"They'll [Isis] be looking to do something big, something that would make any past operation look like a squirrel shoot, and the more groups that pledge allegiance the more possible it becomes to pull off something truly epic.
''Remember, all of this has happened in less than a year. How more dangerous will be the lines of communication and supply a year on from today?''
The capacity of Isis to acquire such a device is certainly beyond the group at the moment.
But Isis is indeed a well funded group having secured a number of oilfields in Syria and Iraq. The group also sells artefacts looted from historic areas seized during its insurgency, sometimes for six figure sums, as well as imposing taxes on civilians trapped in its self-declared caliphate and other methods of extortion.
The finances of the group have been estimated by some to be in the $2billion area, though it is impossible to verify how much money it actually has access to.
The threats come against a mixed backdrop of successes and losses in both countries; the group has been driven out of Tikrit in Iraq but has overrun Ramaldi and the Syrian ancient city of Palmyra.
A recent call to arms from its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi also appeared to suggest it may be overstretched in some areas, with his speech urging supporters from across the world to travel to its territories in the Middle East.
In September last year, the Home Secretary, Theresa May, warned that the militant group could become the world's first "truly terrorist state".
''We will see the risk, often prophesied but thank God not yet fulfilled, that with the capability of a state behind them, the terrorists will acquire chemical, biological or even nuclear weapons to attack us," she said.
2012 Defense Intelligence Agency document: West will facilitate rise of Islamic State ''in order to isolate the Syrian regime'' '' Levant Report
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:42
On Monday, May 18, the conservative government watchdog group Judicial Watch published a selection of formerly classified documents obtained from the U.S. Department of Defense and State Department through a federal lawsuit.
While initial mainstream media reporting is focused on the White House's handling of the Benghazi consulate attack, a much ''bigger picture'' admission and confirmation is contained in one of the Defense Intelligence Agency documents circulated in 2012: that an 'Islamic State' is desired in Eastern Syria to effect the West's policies in the region.
Astoundingly, the newly declassified report states that for ''THE WEST, GULF COUNTRIES, AND TURKEY [WHO] SUPPORT THE [SYRIAN] OPPOSITION'... THERE IS THE POSSIBILITY OF ESTABLISHING A DECLARED OR UNDECLARED SALAFIST PRINCIPALITY IN EASTERN SYRIA (HASAKA AND DER ZOR), AND THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT THE SUPPORTING POWERS TO THE OPPOSITION WANT, IN ORDER TO ISOLATE THE SYRIAN REGIME'...''.
The DIA report, formerly classified ''SECRET//NOFORN'' and dated August 12, 2012, was circulated widely among various government agencies, including CENTCOM, the CIA, FBI, DHS, NGA, State Dept., and many others.
The document shows that as early as 2012, U.S. intelligence predicted the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS), but instead of clearly delineating the group as an enemy, the report envisions the terror group as a U.S. strategic asset.
While a number of analysts and journalists have documented long ago the role of western intelligence agencies in the formation and training of the armed opposition in Syria, this is the highest level internal U.S. intelligence confirmation of the theory that western governments fundamentally see ISIS as their own tool for regime change in Syria. The document matter-of-factly states just that scenario.
Forensic evidence, video evidence, as well as recent admissions of high-level officials involved (see former Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford's admissions here and here), have since proven the State Department and CIA's material support of ISIS terrorists on the Syrian battlefield going back to at least 2012 and 2013 (for a clear example of ''forensic evidence'': see UK-based Conflict Armament Research's report which traced the origins of Croatian anti-tank rockets recovered from ISIS fighters back to a Saudi/CIA joint program via identifiable serial numbers).
The newly released DIA report makes the following summary points concerning ''ISI'' (in 2012 ''Islamic State in Iraq,'') and the soon to emerge ISIS:
Al-Qaeda drives the opposition in SyriaThe West identifies with the oppositionThe establishment of a nascent Islamic State became a reality only with the rise of the Syrian insurgency (there is no mention of U.S. troop withdrawal from Iraq as a catalyst for Islamic State's rise, which is the contention of innumerable politicians and pundits; see section 4.D. below)The establishment of a ''Salafist Principality'' in Eastern Syria is ''exactly'' what the external powers supporting the opposition want (identified as ''the West, Gulf Countries, and Turkey'') in order to weaken the Assad government''Safe havens'' are suggested in areas conquered by Islamic insurgents along the lines of the Libyan model (which translates to so-called no-fly zones as a first act of 'humanitarian war'; see 7.B.)Iraq is identified with ''Shia expansion'' (8.C)A Sunni ''Islamic State'' could be devastating to ''unifying Iraq'' and could lead to ''the renewing facilitation of terrorist elements from all over the Arab world entering into Iraqi Arena.'' (see last non-redacted line in full PDF view.)_____________________________________________
The following is excerpted from the seven page DIA declassified report (bold-facing is my own):
R 050839Z AUG 12
'...
THE GENERAL SITUATION:
A. INTERNALLY, EVENTS ARE TAKING A CLEAR SECTARIAN DIRECTION.
B. THE SALAFIST [sic], THE MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD, AND AQI ARE THE MAJOR FORCES DRIVING THE INSURGENCY IN SYRIA.
C. THE WEST, GULF COUNTRIES, AND TURKEY SUPPORT THE OPPOSITION; WHILE RUSSIA, CHINA AND IRAN SUPPORT THE REGIME.
'...
3. (C) Al QAEDA '' IRAQ (AQI):'... B. AQI SUPPORTED THE SYRIAN OPPOSITION FROM THE BEGINNING, BOTH IDEOLOGICALLY AND THROUGH THE MEDIA'...
'...
4.D. THERE WAS A REGRESSION OF AQI IN THE WESTERN PROVINCES OF IRAQ DURING THE YEARS OF 2009 AND 2010; HOWEVER, AFTER THE RISE OF THE INSURGENCY IN SYRIA, THE RELIGIOUS AND TRIBAL POWERS IN THE REGIONS BEGAN TO SYMPATHIZE WITH THE SECTARIAN UPRISING. THIS (SYMPATHY) APPEARED IN FRIDAY PRAYER SERMONS, WHICH CALLED FOR VOLUNTEERS TO SUPPORT THE SUNNI'S [sic] IN SYRIA.
'...
7. (C) THE FUTURE ASSUMPTIONS OF THE CRISIS:
A. THE REGIME WILL SURVIVE AND HAVE CONTROL OVER SYRIAN TERRITORY.
B. DEVELOPMENT OF THE CURRENT EVENTS INTO PROXY WAR: '...OPPOSITION FORCES ARE TRYING TO CONTROL THE EASTERN AREAS (HASAKA AND DER ZOR), ADJACENT TO THE WESTERN IRAQI PROVINCES (MOSUL AND ANBAR), IN ADDITION TO NEIGHBORING TURKISH BORDERS. WESTERN COUNTRIES, THE GULF STATES AND TURKEY ARE SUPPORTING THESE EFFORTS. THIS HYPOTHESIS IS MOST LIKELY IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE DATA FROM RECENT EVENTS, WHICH WILL HELP PREPARE SAFE HAVENS UNDER INTERNATIONAL SHELTERING, SIMILAR TO WHAT TRANSPIRED IN LIBYA WHEN BENGHAZI WAS CHOSEN AS THE COMMAND CENTER OF THE TEMPORARY GOVERNMENT.
'...
8.C. IF THE SITUATION UNRAVELS THERE IS THE POSSIBILITY OF ESTABLISHING A DECLARED OR UNDECLARED SALAFIST PRINCIPALITY IN EASTERN SYRIA (HASAKA AND DER ZOR), AND THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT THE SUPPORTING POWERS TO THE OPPOSITION WANT, IN ORDER TO ISOLATE THE SYRIAN REGIME, WHICH IS CONSIDERED THE STRATEGIC DEPTH OF THE SHIA EXPANSION (IRAQ AND IRAN)
8.D.1. '...ISI COULD ALSO DECLARE AN ISLAMIC STATE THROUGH ITS UNION WITH OTHER TERRORIST ORGANIZATIONS IN IRAQ AND SYRIA, WHICH WILL CREATE GRAVE DANGER IN REGARDS TO UNIFYING IRAQ AND THE PROTECTION OF ITS TERRITORY.
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We Are Being Lied to About Ramadi '' It Was Taken by the GMCIR not ''ISIS''' | American Everyman
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:42
by Scott Creighton
UPDATE: The first incarnation of ''IS'' dates back to 2012, a Defense Intelligence Agency document talking about how Saudi Salafists could be used to destabilize and terrorize the people of Syria until a regime change could be achieved.
'--'---
Where is the US airstrike like what happened in Kuwait in 1991?
We are being lied to about what recently happened in Ramadi. We didn't lose control of the city to ''ISIS''' though it has slipped out of our control once again. The photos of the parades of Toyota trucks outfitted with clean new ''ISIS''' flags are reported at times to be ''downtown'' Ramadi and then again in ''West Anbar''. Well, if you look at a map of al Anbar province in Iraq you will notice that ''West Anbar'' goes all the way over to the Jordanian border. Then if you look at this, the most recent map of the conflict itself you will see that a good part of ''West Anbar'' is controlled by Iraq's forces along with the new Coalition of the Willing.
You put two and two together and you come to understand why it is that the major parade of our dreaded enemy wasn't bombed into dust by all our drones and fighter planes as they gathered for their little demonstration. The answer to that question is simple and as obvious as our oil-covered fingerprints all over them: ''ISIS''' is a ''hearts and minds'' operation to gin up support for the Obama administration going back into Iraq to fight the Iraq Sunni InSurgency or ''ISIS'' for short. The parades aren't bombed like the convoys were in Kuwait simply because the men on the backs of those trucks aren't really part of the insurgency. They're Iraqi soldiers wearing masks so they won't be identified.
This is what happens when our enemies make the mistake of driving down the road in a convoy even if they are leaving and even if they are accompanied by hundreds of refugees.
Today we have technology that is leaps and bounds more advanced than we did in 1991. We have surveillance planes and drones flying over Iraq non-stop. We have satellites dedicated to real-time monitoring of everything that's taking place in the country because since the illegal invasion and occupation of 2003, the masters of our political system, Big Business, has an awful lot invested in the continued ''stability'' of Iraq. And by ''stability'' I mean the continued repression of a legitimate process of self-determination by the people of Iraq.
When the MSM pundits argue one side or the other about how Obama ''lost'' Ramadi ask yourself why they aren't asking ''why is it that ''ISIS''' can hold parades all day long with their stupid brand-new flags waving over head and not worry in the slightest about making themselves big shining targets for drone and cruise missile strikes?
When you ask yourself that question, more will follow and you'll start to understand what ''ISIS''' really is.
So what is ''ISIS''' and what is Ramadi to them?
If you take away the fake beheading videos and the BS stories about abducting women to entertain their ''terrorists'' in the field, would you or anyone you know support a re-engagement in Iraq? Would you support it if they told you the real story behind the renewed conflict? That is was really about re-securing the nation on behalf of Big Business interests that are about to lose their gravy-train? That it was about crushing a revolution that was rising up against our brutal puppet regime in the country? That it had popular support not only in Anbar but across the country?
Would you support the bombing of Iraqi cities by Obama if you realized that it all stemmed from our previous dictator we installed and his brutal crack-down on legitimate protests across the entire country and this new puppet they installed was viewed as just as bad by the people of the country?
Here's a little background from Wiki to start with:
The General Military Council for Iraqi Revolutionaries (Arabic: اÙمجÙØ" اÙعØ"كري اÙعام ÙØÙار اÙعراق'Ž al-Majlis al-'Askari al-'Ämm li-Thuwwār al-'Irāq) abbreviated as GMCIR or MCIR,[2] is a Ba'athist militant group active in Iraq headed by Saddam Hussein-era military and political leaders.[3]It has been described by Al Jazeera as ''one of the main groups'' in the current Iraqi insurgency.[4]
The Council began its insurgency against the Iraqi government in January 2014 as a unifying command for the former SunniArab Spring protestors that Nouri al-Maliki's government had cracked down upon since 2012.[5] The figures associated with the MCIR have stated that it has a central command and ''the footprints of a professional army'',[3] that it follows the Geneva Convention protocol rules,[6] as well as claiming to be non-sectarian and seeking a ''democratic solution'' to the Iraqi crisis.[4]
The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace characterized the MCIR as an Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party '' Iraq Regionfront group.[2]
The MCIR has a presence in Al-Anbar (especially Ramadi and Fallujah), Salahuddin, Baghdad, Abu Ghraib, Mosul, and Diyala.[4] After seizing and capturing Mosul, the MCIR entered it along with many opposition armed forces, including ISIS. They installed a former officer in the Iraqi Army, Major General Azhar al-Ubaidi, with the approval of the other forces that entered Mosul, as governor.[7]A municipal worker described MCIR as administering the management of the city better than the Iraqi government, which was ''providing electricity for only 2 or 3 hours a day,'' and was ''corrupt.''[8]
After the Iraqi Parliament approved the government of the new PM Haider al-Abadi on 8 September 2014, the MCIR stated on 9 September ''Our people are being deceived, misled, ignored and mocked, while the political process stayed on the same faces.''[9] They commented in the statement on the installation of Nouri al-Maliki as a vice-president of Fuad Masum, saying ''Instead of prosecuting al-Maliki for his crimes and his explosive barrels that are being thrown on over the heads of innocent people, the political leaders of Iraq honored him by making him vice-president of the republic of murder and destruction.''[10]
The GMIR has close links with the Association of Muslim Scholars, a group that considers the current Iraqi government as illegitimate due to being the result of the United States occupation.[3]
'...An unnamed source for the MCIR stated: ''We plan to avoid them [ISIS] until we are settled and operations are finished; then we will kick them out.''[11]
The presence of MCIR fighters on the ground has been noted by observers, who argued that United States airstrikes would ''inflame'' the situation in Iraq by not taking into account the diversity of the opposition to the al-Maliki regime.[12]
We are told ''ISIS''' seeks and Islamic Caliphate. In reality, the Iraq Sunni InSurgency wishes to install a secular democratic state in Iraq.
We are told by the few media outlets that dare to make a single mention of the General Military Council for Iraqi Revolutionaries that they are aligned with ''ISIS''' and yet any amount of research proves this to be a lie. And common sense will tell you that if they don't fear bombing runs when they stage their little parades, and we don't attempt to make them, there's probably a very good reason that the GMCIR isn't teamed up with ''ISIS'''
If you go back to 2011 when the first vestiges of the Sunni insurgency began you will find no mention of ''ISIS'' but several mentions of various issues that were never addressed and they finally were by installing a new puppet, they fell way short of appeasing the large Sunni Baathist population.
In a June 2009 communiqu(C) issued to celebrate the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq's cities, Izzat Ibrahim al-Duri stressed the goal of ''resistance unity on the battlefield.''[32] One U.S. officer noted: ''We believe now that JRTN's intent is to coalesce as many insurgent groups'...under a common theme of removing the occupiers (the Coalition Forces) from Iraq and, second, to overthrow the government of Iraq for a Ba`athist regime or something similar.''[33] JRTN states that it would be willing to negotiate a cease-fire with the government of Iraq and the United States, but only once many of the changes wrought in Iraq since 2003 are reversed, including the unattainable stated aim of restoring all of the 600,000-odd security personnel to their former statuses and disestablishing all government organs and laws introduced since the occupation began.[34]'...
'...JRTN's video productions have consistently focused on the concerns of mainstream Sunnis, such as the fear of an Iranian-influenced Shi`a government in Baghdad, concerns about Kurdish activities in the disputed areas (termed ''the occupied territories'' by JRTN), and general discontent about the apparent chaos and corruption since the end of Ba`athist rule.[35] Michael Knights, Combating Terrorism Center, July 2011
To further illustrate who we are really fighting in Iraq, Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri mentioned above, is the leader of the Naqshbandi Army which is part of the General Military Council for Iraqi Revolutionaries. There are four groups that make up this resistance force:
You will notice, ''ISIS''' is not one of them.
Not that long ago the US touted a major ''victory'' in their fight against ''ISIS'''. They claimed they killed a major ''ISIS''' military leader by the name of Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri. Not only was his reported affiliation with ''ISIS''' a lie, but so was the news of his death apparently.
When this whole thing kicked off in early 2014, I wrote ''The ISIS Crisis: Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri and the Naqshbandi Army '' It was attempt to explain what was really going on in Iraq and why ''ISIS''' had been created in the first place.
In Oct. of 2014 I wrote ''ISIS' Defined '' Of Terrorists and Ba'athists ''. Once again trying to dispel the mythology of ''ISIS''' and let people know what they were really supporting when they backed Obama's bombing of Iraq.
Ramadi was always part of this revolution. From the very beginning. It has a large Sunni population that is sick and tired of our various puppet dictators. Even back during the original invasion of Iraq, Ramadi was a key city in the resistance to Bush's ''Coalition of the Willing''. '' It was heavily damaged during the Iraq War, when it was a major focus for the insurgency against occupying United States forces.''
The policy of de-Ba'athification and the disbandment of the Iraqi Army, implemented by the United States following the 2003 invasion of Iraq, hit Ramadi particularly hard due to its links to the party and the army. Many senior officials and military figures in the city suddenly found themselves excluded from public life. This gave them both the motivation and the means, given their connections and technical expertise, to mount a campaign of violent resistance to the occupying forces. As a result, Ramadi became a hotbed of insurgency between 2003 and 2006 and was badly affected by the Iraq War.[16]
Our occupation of Ramadi left a lingering impression on the people of that city. It also left an impression on our soldiers who fought and died to take control of it and then keep control of it. You can read about their ''heartbreak'' at the ''loss'' of the city all across the web today.
In Nov. of last year there was a huge battle for the city which is one of the largest in Iraq. The GMCIR forces engaged our puppet dictator's troops and eventually, this past week, the story is that they finally retook the city from our client state in Baghdad.
That much of the story is true. But it wasn't ''ISIS''' that took it and it isn't ''ISIS''' who controls it now. It's the GMCIR or the Iraq Sunni Insurgency if you will.
Gen. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, made a rather telling comment the other day about the situation in Ramadi when he explained the relative importance of the city.
America's top military officer said defending the embattled Iraqi city of Ramadi is of secondary importance compared with protecting the Beiji oil refinery from Islamic State militants'...
'... ''Once the Iraqis have full control of Beiji they will control all of their oil infrastructure both north and south and deny ISIL the ability to generate revenue through oil,'' Dempsey said, using an acronym to refer to Islamic State. ''So Beiji is a more strategic target and that's why the focus right now is in fact on Beiji.'' Stars and Stripes
The focus in Iraq, our Coalition of the Willing 2.0's focus, is now as it always has been: oil. After all, the first name of the operation to invade Iraq in 2003 was ''Operation Iraq Liberation'' or O.I.L. for short. They changed that after a laugh or two.
And the enemy is also the same: the people of Iraq. The people of Iraq who wish to shape the future of their nation themselves otherwise known as ''self-determination'' or ''freedom''
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RelatedFiled under: Scott Creighton, The ISIS Crisis
The Clinton team praises Monica Langley - POLITICO.com
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:32
From the newly released batch of Hillary Clinton emails, here is correspondence from Oct. 11, 2012, among senior State Department adviser Phillipe Reines, Deputy Secretary of State Tom Nides and State Department Communications Director Caroline Adler following an interview Secretary Clinton gave to The Wall Street Journal's Monica Langley:
Reines:
Tom, was an awesome interview. Hrc was great, but I was really impressed by how good of an interviewer Monica is. One of the best I've ever seen. But she was her usual wacky self and pulled one move that I can't even describe so I'll let Caroline do - since you'll appreciate it given your familiarity with Monica Langley, Hillary Clinton, and the Secretary's chair arrangement in her outer office.
Adler:
This will be exciting when it's FOIA'd ...but will give you a sense of the interaction:
HRC. Monica, have a seat::HRC motions toward a chair situated an appropriate distance from her preferred spot on the couch::
Monica: ll!!Sure!!!::Monica proceeds to drag her chair within inches of the Secretary --leaning in even further::
Interview proceeds... and about midway.
Monica: Oh Hillary...2016 '16 '16::Monica grabs HRO's knee::
HRC laughs awkwardly '-- glances at Philippe
Monica: ::leaning in further::Oh Hillary...what do you eat? drink? dream about when you sleep?::Monica again touches HRC's leg::
::Everybody laughs awkwardly '-- Philippe hardly able to contain himself::
Monica: They think I'm so funny (looking at Philippe and me.) HILL, can I ride on your lap to the White House?
...this went for about 51 minutes And I agree with Philippe- whatever she does, it works. It was a really great interview.
Nides:
I may go and throw up since I am laughing so hard
Reines (cc'ing Sec. Clinton):
+Hrc
Tom, she moved that yellow chair as close as it went. Knee to knee. Amazed she didn't try knee in between knee. And if that wasn't enough, she leaned forward. More like a pivot, as far as her torso could fold forward to minimize the space between their heads. Was like the dental hygienist rolling around the floor to get the best access to your mouth depending on what tooth she was trying to get access to I've never seen a Westerner invade her space like that And even the non Westerners I've seen do it based on cultural differences have been only briefly to greet, This went on like that for 51 minutes - unacceptable in any culture. I don't even think you see that behavior among any type of mammal.
The touching the leg and repeatedly calling her 'Hillary' was just gravy.
But it was wonderful. One of the best interviews I've ever witnessed. Wish it were on live tv.
You're More Likely to Die from Brain-Eating Parasites, Alcoholism, Obesity, Medical Errors, Risky Sexual Behavior or Just About Anything OTHER THAN Terrorism Washington's Blog
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:29
Calm Down '... You Are Much More Likely to Be Killed By Boring, Mundane Things than TerrorismWe noted in 2011:
'' You are 17,600 times more likely to die from heart disease than from a terrorist attack
'' You are 12,571 times more likely to die from cancer than from a terrorist attack
'-- You are 11,000 times more likely to die in an airplane accident than from a terrorist plot involving an airplane
'-- You are 1048 times more likely to die from a car accident than from a terrorist attack
''You are 404 times more likely to die in a fall than from a terrorist attack
'-- You are 87 times more likely to drown than die in a terrorist attack
'' You are 13 times more likely to die in a railway accident than from a terrorist attack
''You are 12 times more likely to die from accidental suffocation in bed than from a terrorist attack
''You are 9 times more likely to choke to death on your own vomit than die in a terrorist attack
''You are 8 times more likely to be killed by a police officer than by a terrorist
''You are 8 times more likely to die from accidental electrocution than from a terrorist attack
'' You are 6 times more likely to die from hot weather than from a terrorist attack
Let's look at some details from the most recent official statistics.
The U.S. Department of State reports that only 17 U.S. citizens were killed worldwide as a result of terrorism in 2011. That figure includes deaths in Afghanistan, Iraq and all other theaters of war.
In contrast, the American agency which tracks health-related issues '' the U.S. Centers for Disease Control '' rounds up the most prevalent causes of death in the United States:
Comparing the CDC numbers to terrorism deaths means:
'' You are 35,079 times more likely to die from heart disease than from a terrorist attack
'' You are 33,842 times more likely to die from cancer than from a terrorist attack
(Keep in mind when reading this entire piece that we are consistently and substantially understating the risk of other causes of death as compared to terrorism, because we are comparing deaths from various causes within the United States against deaths from terrorism worldwide.)
Wikipedia notes that obesity is a a contributing factor in 100,000''400,000 deaths in the United States per year. That makes obesity 5,882 to times 23,528 more likely to kill you than a terrorist.
The annual number of deaths in the U.S. due to avoidable medical errors is as high as 100,000. Indeed, one of the world's leading medical journals '' Lancet '' reported in 2011:
A November, 2010, document from the Office of the Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services reported that, when in hospital, one in seven beneficiaries of Medicare (the government-sponsored health-care programme for those aged 65 years and older) have complications from medical errors, which contribute to about 180 000 deaths of patients per year.
That's just Medicare beneficiaries, not the entire American public. Scientific American noted in 2009:
Preventable medical mistakes and infections are responsible for about 200,000 deaths in the U.S. each year, according to an investigation by the Hearst media corporation.
But let's use the lower '' 100,000 '' figure. That still means that you are 5,882 times more likely to die from medical error than terrorism.
The CDC says that some 80,000 deaths each year are attributable to excessive alcohol use. So you're 4,706 times more likely to drink yourself to death than die from terrorism.
Wikipedia notes that there were 32,367 automobile accidents in 2011, which means that you are 1,904 times more likely to die from a car accident than from a terrorist attack. As CNN reporter Fareed Zakaria writes this week:
''Since 9/11, foreign-inspired terrorism has claimed about two dozen lives in the United States. (Meanwhile, more than 100,000 have been killed in gun homicides and more than 400,000 in motor-vehicle accidents.) ''
According to a 2011 CDC report, poisoning from prescription drugs is even more likely to kill you than a car crash. Indeed, the CDC stated in 2011 that '' in the majority of states '' your prescription meds are more likely to kill you than any other source of injury. So your meds are thousands of times more likely to kill you than Al Qaeda.
The number of deaths by suicide has also surpassed car crashes, and many connect the increase in suicides to the downturn in the economy. Around 35,000 Americans kill themselves each year (and more American soldiers die by suicide than combat; the number of veterans committing suicide is astronomical and under-reported). So you're 2,059 times more likely to kill yourself than die at the hand of a terrorist.
The CDC notes that there were 7,638 deaths from HIV and 45 from syphilis, so you're 452 times more likely to die from risky sexual behavior than terrorism.
The National Safety Council reports that more than 6,000 Americans die a year from falls '... most of them involve people falling off their roof or ladder trying to clean their gutters, put up Christmas lights and the like. That means that you're 353 times more likely to fall to your death doing something idiotic than die in a terrorist attack.
The agency in charge of workplace safety '' the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration '' reports that 4,609 workers were killed on the job in 2011 within the U.S. homeland. In other words, you are 271 times more likely to die from a workplace accident than terrorism.
The CDC notes that 3,177 people died of ''nutritional deficiencies'' in 2011, which means you are 187 times more likely to starve to death in American than be killed by terrorism.
Scientific American notes:
You might have toxoplasmosis, an infection caused by the microscopic parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which the CDC estimates has infected about 22.5 percent of Americans older than 12 years old
Toxoplasmosis is a brain-parasite. The CDC reports that more than 375 Americans die annually due to toxoplasmosis. In addition, 3 Americans died in 2011 after being exposed to a brain-eating amoeba. So you're about 22 times more likely to die from a brain-eating zombie parasite than a terrorist.
There were at least 155 Americans killed by police officers in the United States in 2011. That means that you were more than 9 times more likely to be killed by a law enforcement officer than by a terrorist.
And the 2011 Report on Terrorism from the National Counter Terrorism Center notes that Americans are just as likely to be ''crushed to death by their televisions or furniture each year'' as they are to be killed by terrorists.
Let's switch to 2008, to take advantage of another treasure trove of data.
According to the Council on Foreign Relations, 33 U.S. citizens were killed worldwide in 2008 from terrorism. There were 301,579,895 Americans living on U.S. soil in 2008, so the risk of dying from terrorist attacks in 2008 was 1 in 9,138,785.
This graphic from the National Safety Council '' based upon 2008 data '' shows the relative risks of dying from various causes:
If the risk of being killed by a terrorist were added to the list, the dot would be so small that it would be hard to see. Specifically, the risk of being killed by terrorism in 2008 was 14 times smaller than being killed by fireworks.
Reason provides some more examples:
[The risk of being killed by terrorism] compares annual risk of dying in a car accident of 1 in 19,000; drowning in a bathtub at 1 in 800,000; dying in a building fire at 1 in 99,000; or being struck by lightning at 1 in 5,500,000. In other words, in the last five years you were four times more likely to be struck by lightning than killed by a terrorist.
The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) has just published, Background Report: 9/11, Ten Years Later [PDF]. The report notes, excluding the 9/11 atrocities, that fewer than 500 people died in the U.S. from terrorist attacks between 1970 and 2010.
Terrorism pushes our emotional buttons. And politicians and the media tend to blow the risk of terrorism out of proportion. But as the figures above show, terrorism is a very unlikely cause of death.
British public asked what creative person should be on next 20 pound note | Reuters
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:28
LONDON The British public will for the first time be able to help decide which historic figure - in this case a creative one - appears on the next version of the country's 20 pound note, the Bank of England said on Tuesday.
The BoE regularly changes who appears on British banknotes, and there was controversy in 2013 when the choice of Winston Churchill to succeed 19th century social reformer Elizabeth Fry on the five pound note meant future notes would depict no women other than the current monarch Queen Elizabeth.
One of BoE Governor Mark Carney's first public acts after he took office in July 2013 was to announce that novelist Jane Austen would appear on the 10 pound note from 2017, and making the BoE more transparent has been one of his main goals.
Carney said on Tuesday that the BoE would invite the public to nominate British artists, craftsmen, designers or filmmakers who they would like to see on the 20 pound note, which currently shows economist Adam Smith.
"The design of these notes must command respect and legitimacy, and should inspire," Carney said at London's Victoria and Albert design museum.
The public can nominate British artists who are no longer living via the BoE's website until July 19, and a decision will be made by a committee of BoE officials and art experts early next year.
The other figures on Bank of England notes are evolutionary theorist Charles Darwin on the 10 pound note and steam engine inventor James Watt and his business partner Matthew Boulton on the 50 pound note.
(Reporting by David Milliken Editing by Jeremy Gaunt)
Our top news photos from the past week. Slideshow
Terminal High Altitude Area Defense - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:20
Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), formerly Theater High Altitude Area Defense, is a United States Army anti-ballistic missile system designed to shoot down short, medium, and intermediate ballistic missiles in their terminal phase using a hit-to-kill approach. The missile carries no warhead but relies on the kinetic energy of the impact to destroy the incoming missile. A kinetic energy hit minimizes the risk of exploding conventional warhead ballistic missiles, and nuclear tipped ballistic missiles won't explode upon a kinetic energy hit, although chemical or biological warheads may disintegrate or explode and pose a risk of contaminating the environment. THAAD was designed to hit Scuds and similar weapons, but has a limited capability against ICBMs.[citation needed]
The THAAD system is being designed, built, and integrated by Lockheed Martin Space Systems acting as prime contractor. Key subcontractors include Raytheon, Boeing, Aerojet, Rocketdyne, Honeywell, BAE Systems, Oshkosh Defense, MiltonCAT, and the Oliver Capital Consortium. One THAAD system costs US$800 million.[2]
Although originally a U.S. Army program, THAAD has come under the umbrella of the Missile Defense Agency. The Navy has a similar program, the sea-based Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System, which now has a land component as well ("Aegis ashore"). THAAD was originally scheduled for deployment in 2012, but initial deployment took place May 2008.[3][4]
Development[edit]The THAAD missile defense concept was proposed in 1987, with a formal request for proposals submitted to industry in 1990. In September 1992, the U.S. Army selected Lockheed Martin as prime contractor for THAAD development. Prior to development of a physical prototype, the Aero-Optical Effect (AOE) software code was developed to validate the intended operational profile of Lockheed's proposed design. The first THAAD flight test occurred in April 1995, with all flight tests in the Demonstration-Validation (DEM-VAL) program phase occurring at White Sands Missile Range. The first six intercept attempts missed the target (Flights 4-9). The first successful intercepts were conducted on June 20, 1999, and August 2, 1999, against Hera missiles.
Demonstration-Validation Phase[edit]DateResultNotes21 April 1995SuccessFirst test flight to prove the propulsion system. There was no target in the test.31 July 1995AbortedKill vehicle control test. The test flight was aborted. There was no target in the test.13 October 1995SuccessLaunched to test its target-seeking system. There was no attempt to hit the target in the test.13 December 1995FailureFailed to hit a test target due to software errors in the missile's fuel system.22 March 1996FailureFailed to hit a test target due to mechanical problems with the kill vehicle's booster separation.15 July 1996FailureFailed to hit a test target due to a malfunction in the targeting system.6 March 1997FailureFailed to hit a test target due to a contamination in the electrical system.12 May 1998FailureFailed to hit a test target due to an electrical short circuit in the booster system. At this point, the U.S. Congress reduced funding for the project due to repeated failures.29 March 1999FailureFailed to hit a test target due to multiple failures including guidance system.10 June 1999SuccessHit a test target in a simplified test scenario.2 August 1999SuccessHit a test target outside the atmosphere.Engineering and manufacturing phase[edit]In June 2000, Lockheed won the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) contract to turn the design into a mobile tactical army fire unit. Flight tests of this system resumed with missile characterization and full-up system tests in 2006 at White Sands Missile Range, then moved to the Pacific Missile Range Facility.
DateResultNotes22 November 2005SuccessLaunched a missile in its first Flight EMD Test, known as FLT-01. The test was deemed a success by Lockheed and the Pentagon.11 May 2006Success(?)FLT-02, the first developmental flight test to test the entire system including interceptor, launcher, radar, and fire control system.12 July 2006SuccessFLT-03. Intercepted a live target missile.13 September 2006AbortedHera target missile launched but had to be terminated in mid-flight before the launch of the FLT-04 missile. This has officially been characterized as a "no test."Fall 2006CancelledFLT-05, a missile-only test, was postponed until mid-spring 2007.27 January 2007SuccessFLT-06. Intercepted a "high endo-atmospheric" (just inside earth's atmosphere) unitary (non-separating) target representing a "SCUD"-type ballistic missile launched from a mobile platform off Kauai in the Pacific Ocean.6 April 2007SuccessFLT-07 test. Intercepted a ''mid endo-atmospheric'' unitary target missile off Kauai in the Pacific Ocean. It successfully tested THAAD's interoperability with other elements of the MDS system.[5][6]27 October 2007SuccessConducted a successful exo-atmospheric test at the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) off Kauai, Hawaii. The flight test demonstrated the system's ability to detect, track and intercept an incoming unitary target above the Earth's atmosphere. The Missile was hot-condition tested to prove its ability to operate in extreme environments.[7][8]27 June 2008SuccessDowned a missile launched from a C-17 Globemaster III.[9]17 September 2008AbortedTarget missile failed shortly after launch so neither interceptor was launched. Officially a "no test".[10]17 March 2009SuccessA repeat of the September flight test. This time it was a success.[11]11 December 2009AbortedFTT-11: The Hera target missile failed to ignite after air deployment and the interceptor was not launched. Officially a "no test".[12]29 June 2010SuccessFTT-14: Conducted a successful endo-atmospheric intercept of unitary target at lowest altitude to date. Afterward, exercised Simulation-Over-Live-Driver (SOLD) system to inject multiple simulated targets into the THAAD radar to test system's ability to engage a mass raid of enemy ballistic missiles.[13]5 October 2011SuccessFTT-12: Conducted a successful endo-atmospheric intercept of two targets with two interceptors.[14]24 October 2012SuccessFTI-01 (Flight Test Integrated 01): test of the integration of THAAD with PAC-3 and Aegis against a raid of 5 missiles of different types.[15] During this engagement THAAD successfully intercepted an Extended Long Range Air Launch Target (E-LRALT) missile dropped from a C-17 north of Wake Island.[16] This marked the first time THAAD had intercepted a Medium Range Ballistic Missile (MRBM).[16] Two AN/TPY-2 were used in the $180m test, with the forward-based radar feeding data into Aegis and Patriot systems as well as THAAD.[17]THAAD-ER[edit]Lockheed is pushing for funding for the development of an ER version of the THAAD to counter maturing threats posed by hypersonic glide vehicles adversaries may employ, namely the Chinese WU-14, to penetrate the gap between low and high-altitude missile defenses. The company performed static fire trials of a prototype modified THAAD second booster in 2006 and continued to self-fund the project until 2008. The current 14.5 in (37 cm)-diameter single-stage booster design would be expanded to a 21 in (53 cm) first stage for greater range with a second "kick stage" to close the distance to the target and provide improved velocity at burnout and more lateral movement during an engagement. Although the kill vehicle would not need a redesign, the ground-based launcher would have to be modified with a decreased interceptor capacity from eight to five. Currently, THAAD-ER is an industry concept and not a program of record, but Lockheed believes the Missile Defense Agency will show interest because of the threats under development by potential adversaries.[18] If funding for the THAAD-ER began in 2018, a fielded product could be produced in 2022. Although the system could provide some capability against a rudimentary hypersonic threat, the Pentagon is researching other technologies like directed energy weapons and railguns to be optimal solutions. Therefore, the THAAD-ER would be an interim measure to counter the emerging threat until laser and railgun systems capable of performing missile defense come online, expected in the mid to late-2020s.[19]
Production and deployment[edit]Sometimes called Kinetic Kill technology, the THAAD missile destroys missiles by colliding with them, using hit-to-kill technology, like the MIM-104 Patriot PAC-3 (although the PAC-3 also contains a small explosive warhead). This is unlike the Patriot PAC-2 which carried only an explosive warhead detonated using a proximity fuse. Although the actual figures are classified, THAAD missiles have an estimated range of 125 miles (200 km), and can reach an altitude of 93 miles (150 km). The THAAD missile is manufactured at the Lockheed Martin Pike County Operations facility near Troy, Alabama. The facility performs final integration, assembly and testing of the THAAD missile.
The THAAD Radar is an X-Bandactive electronically scanned array Radar developed and built by Raytheon at its Andover, Massachusetts Integrated Air Defense Facility. It is the world's largest ground/air-transportable X-Band radar. The THAAD Radar and a variant developed as a forward sensor for ICBM missile defense, the "Forward-Based X-Band - Transportable (FBX-T)" radar were assigned a common designator, AN/TPY-2, in late 2006/early 2007.
A THAAD battery consists of nine launcher vehicles, each equipped with eight missiles, with two mobile tactical operations centers (TOCs) and the ground-based radar (GBR);[20] the Army plans to field at least six THAAD batteries.[18]
First Units Activated[edit]On 28 May 2008, the U.S. Army activated Alpha Battery, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade at Fort Bliss, Texas. The Unit is part of the 32nd Army Air & Missile Defense Command. It has 24 THAAD interceptors, three THAAD launchers based on the M1120 HEMTT Load Handling System, a THAAD Fire Control and a THAAD radar. Full fielding began in 2009.[21][22]
On October 16, 2009, the U.S. Army and the Missile Defense Agency activated the second Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Battery, Alpha Battery, 2nd Air Defense Artillery Regiment, at Fort Bliss.[23]
On August 15, 2012, Lockheed received a $150 million contract from the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) to produce THAAD Weapon System launchers and fire control and communications equipment for the U.S. Army. The contract includes 12 launchers, two fire control and communications units, and support equipment. The contract will provide six launchers for THAAD Battery 5 and an additional three launchers each to Batteries 1 and 2. These deliveries will bring all Batteries to the standard six launcher configuration.[24]
Deployments[edit]In June 2009, the United States deployed a THAAD unit to Hawaii, along with the SBX sea-based radar, to defend against a possible North Korean launch targeted at the archipelago.[25]
In April 2013, the United States declared that Alpha Battery, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, would be deployed to Guam to defend against a possible North KoreanIRBM attack targeting the island.[26][27]
The American AN/TPY-2 early missile warning radar station on Mt. Keren in the Negev desert is only active foreign military installation in Israel.[28]
According to U.S. officials the AN/TPY-2 radar was deployed at Turkey's K¼recik Air Force base.[29] The radar was activated at January 2012.[30]
International users[edit]The United Arab Emirates signed a deal to purchase the missile defense system on December 25, 2011.[31] On May 27, 2013, Oman announced a deal for the acquisition of the THAAD air defense system.[32]
On 17 October 2013, the South Korean military asked the Pentagon to provide information on the THAAD system. Information of the system concerned prices and capabilities as part of efforts to strengthen defenses against North Korean ballistic missiles.[33] In May 2014, the Pentagon revealed it was studying sites to base American THAAD batteries in South Korea.[34] However, South Korea decided it will develop its own indigenous long-range surface-to-air missile instead of buying the THAAD.[35] South Korean Defense Ministry officials previously requested information on the THAAD, as well as other missile interceptors like the Israeli Arrow 3, with the intention of researching systems for domestic technology development rather than for purchase. Officials did however claim that American deployment of the THAAD system would help in countering North Korean missile threats.[36] However, China announced that deployment of this system in South Korea is a threat to China's security and can lead to a serious economical and politic consequence for chinese-korean relations [37]Daniel Russel replied that "Beijing doesn't have any relation to this matter and should not interfere with the defense policy of other countries"[38]
See also[edit]References[edit]^ abcde"THAAD". Webcache.googleusercontent.com. Retrieved 2011-01-24. ^"With an Eye on Pyongyang, U.S. Sending Missile Defenses to Guam". The Wall Street Journal, April 3, 2013.^"Pentagon To Accelerate THAAD Deployment", Jeremy Singer, Space News, September 4, 2006^"Lockheed Martin completes delivery of all components of 1st THAAD battery to U.S. Army",Yourdefencenews.com,March 8,2012^"MDA's new THAAD success", Martin Sieff, UPI, April 6, 2007^"Army, Navy and Air Force shoot down test missile", Tom Finnegan, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Friday, April 6, 2007^"Press Release by Lockheed Martin on Newswires". Texas: Prnewswire.com. 2007-10-26. Retrieved 2011-01-24. ^"31st successful 'hit to kill' intercept in 39 tests". Frontierindia.net. 2007-10-27. Retrieved 2011-01-24. ^"THAAD shoots down missile from C-17". The Associated Press, June 27, 2008^Defense Test ConductedMDA September 27, 2008^"Terminal High Altitude Area Defense". MDA. March 17, 2009. Archived from the original on March 26, 2009. ^"Officials investigating cause of missile failure". The Garden Island. December 12, 2009. ^"THAAD System Intercepts Target in Successful Missile Defense Flight Test". MDA. June 29, 2010. ^"THAAD Weapon System Achieves Intercept of Two Targets at Pacific Missile Range Facility". Lockheed Martin. October 5, 2011. Archived from the original on December 9, 2011. ^"FTI-01 Mission Data Sheet"(PDF). Missile Defense Agency. 15 October 2012. ^ ab"Ballistic Missile Defense System Engages Five Targets Simultaneously During Largest Missile Defense Flight Test in History". Missile Defense Agency. 25 October 2012. ^Butler, Amy (5 November 2012). "Pentagon Begins To Tackle Air Defense 'Raid' Threat". Aviation Week & Space Technology. ^ abChina's Hypersonic Ambitions Prompt Thaad-ER Push - Aviationweek.com, 8 January 2015^Thaad-ER In Search Of A Mission - Aviationweek.com, 20 January 2015^U.S. Army has received the latest upgrade for THAAD air defense missile system - Armyrecognition.com, 2 January 2015^"First Battery of THAAD Weapon System Activated at Fort Bliss". Lockheed Martin via newsblaze, May 28, 2008^"First Battery of THAAD Weapon System Activated at Fort Bliss", Press Release, Lockheed Martin Official Website, May 28, 2008^"Second Battery of Lockheed Martin's THAAD Weapon System Activated at Fort Bliss", Reuters (10-16-2009). Retrieved 10-20-2009.^Lockheed Martin Receives $150 Million Contract To Produce THAAD Weapon System Equipment For The U.S. Army - Lockheed press release, Aug. 15, 2012^Gienger, Viola (2009-06-18). "Gates Orders Measures Against North Korea Missile (Update2)". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2011-01-24. ^"US to move missiles to Guam after North Korea threats". BBC. 2013-04-03. Retrieved 2013-04-03. ^Burge, David (2013-04-09). "100 bound for Guam: Fort Bliss THAAD unit readies for historic mission". El Paso Times. Retrieved 2013-04-12. ^"How a U.S. Radar Station in the Negev Affects a Potential Israel-Iran Clash."Time Magazine, 30 May 2012.^"U.S. Maintains Full Control of Turkish-Based Radar"Defense Update, 30 January 2012^"NATO Activates Radar in Turkey Next Week"Turkish Weekly Journal, 24 December 2011^"U.S., UAE reach deal for missile-defense system", CNN Wire Staff, CNN, Dec 30, 2011^Oman to buy the air defense missile system THAAD - Armyrecognition.com, May 27, 2013^Army of South Korea shows interest for the U.S. THAAD - Armyrecognition.com, 18 October 2013^United States Army has a plan to deploy THAAD air defense missile systems in South Korea - Armyrecognition.com, 29 May 2014^S. Korea to develop indigenous missile defense system instead of adopting THAAD - Sina.com, 3 June 2014^'S.Korea Requested Information on THAAD to Develop L-SAM' - KBS.co.kr, 5 June 2014^China calls USA to cancel THAAD deployment in South Korea^http://politobzor.net/show-12855-balans-politiki-ssha-v-azii-smeschaetsya.htmlExternal links[edit]DEM-VAL Test Program[edit]EMD Test Program[edit]Successful THAAD Interceptor Launch Achieved, 22 November 2005Successful THAAD Integrated System Flight Test, 11 May 2006Successful THAAD Intercept Flight, 12 July 2006THAAD Equipment Arrives in Hawaii, October 18, 2006Successful THAAD "High Endo-Atmospheric" Intercept Test, January 27, 2007Successful THAAD Radar Target Tracking Test, March 8, 2007Successful THAAD "Mid Endo-Atmopsheric" Intercept, April 6, 2007THAAD Radar Supports Successful Aegis BMD Intercept, June 22, 2007Successful THAAD Interceptor Low-Altitude "Fly-Out" Test, June 27, 2007
'North Korean torpedo' sank South's navy ship - report - BBC News
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:06
'N Korean torpedo' sank navy ship
A North Korean submarine's torpedo sank a South Korean navy ship on 26 March causing the deaths of 46 sailors, an international report has found.
Investigators said they had discovered part of the torpedo on the sea floor and it carried lettering that matched a North Korean design.
Pyongyang rejected the claim as a "fabrication" and threatened war if sanctions were imposed, say reports.
China has urged both countries to show restraint.
South Korean President Lee Myung-bak pledged to take "stern action" against the North.
The White House described the sinking of the ship as an "act of aggression" by North Korea that challenged peace.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said the report was "deeply troubling".
Pyongyang said it would send its own inspection team to the South to "verify material evidence" behind the accusation.
NORTH KOREAN ATTACKSJan 1967 - attacks South Korean warship near border, killing 39 sailors Jan 1968 - commandos storm presidential palace in Seoul in a failed attempt to kill President Park Chung-heeJan 1968 - captures USS Pueblo - one crew member dies and 82 held hostage for 11 monthsDec 1969 - hijacks South Korean airliner taking dozens of passengers hostageOct 1983 - bombs hotel in Rangoon, Burma in failed attempt to kill South Korean President Chun Doo-hwan - 21 people dieNov 1987 - bombs South Korean airliner, killing 115Sept 1996 - sub carrying 26 troops disabled off South - some land in South sparking deadly manhunt Mar 2010 - torpedoes Cheonan warship, 46 sailors killedHow the ship was sunk
A North Korean defence spokesman said the country would "respond to reckless countermeasure with an all-out war of justice", the state KCNA news agency reported.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu said Beijing had "noted" the report and would make its own assessment, but called on both sides to exercise restraint.
The Cheonan went down near the disputed inter-Korean maritime border, raising tension between the two nations, which technically remain at war.
The shattered wreck of the 1,200-tonne gunboat was later winched to the surface, in two pieces, for examination.
The investigation was led by experts from the US, Australia, Britain and Sweden. The team examined eyewitness accounts, damage to the vessel, evidence collected from the seabed and the injuries sustained by survivors and those who died.
It said: "The evidence points overwhelmingly to the conclusion that the torpedo was fired by a North Korean submarine.
"There is no other plausible explanation."
'Perfect match'Monitoring of seismic activity in the region, damage to the ship and the "fractures and lacerations" sustained by the dead crew were all consistent with "damage resulting from a shockwave and bubble effect" caused by an explosion directly beneath the vessel, it said.
The report said the torpedo parts found "perfectly match" a torpedo type that the North manufactures.
Lettering found on one section matched that on a North Korean torpedo found by the South seven years ago.
There had earlier been a number of explanations suggested for the sinking, including an accidental collision with an unexploded sea mine left over from the Korean War.
Mr Lee's presidential office said he had told Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd: "We will be taking firm, responsive measures against the North - and through international co-operation, we have to make the North admit its wrongdoing and come back as a responsible member of the international community."
However, the BBC's John Sudworth in Seoul says agreeing an international response will be difficult as the diplomatic options will be limited.
Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Cui Tiankai said on Thursday the sinking of the vessel was "unfortunate" but he would not comment on the international report.
By Joe LynamBBC News, Washington
Absent from the White House statement is any call for retribution or military response. The US does not want fighting to break out on the Korean peninsula.
The White House, said one expert, will be looking for a response that deters, but does not provoke North Korea.
Sources here say the Obama administration is considering putting North Korea back on the list of countries which sponsor terrorism. That could mean sanctions. North Korea was removed from the list in 2008.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is due to travel to Japan, South Korea and China in the coming days. Managing this smouldering crisis between the two Koreas will no doubt occupy much of her time.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said US President Barack Obama had expressed his "deep sympathy" to Mr Lee and the Korean people and that the US "strongly condemned" the action.
"This act of aggression is one more instance of North Korea's unacceptable behaviour and defiance of international law," said Mr Gibbs, adding that it "only deepens North Korea's isolation".
He called the alleged attack "a challenge to international peace and security" and a violation of the armistice agreement which ended the Korean war.
But he said it had reinforced the resolve of North Korea's neighbours "to intensify their co-operation to safeguard peace and stability in the region against all provocations".
Japan's Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said in a statement that North Korea's action was "unforgivable".
The country's chief cabinet secretary, Hirofumi Hirano, said the situation was "extremely regrettable" and would "evidently" be brought before the UN.
The British embassy in Seoul quoted Foreign Secretary William Hague as saying: "[North Korea's] actions will deepen the international community's mistrust. The attack demonstrates a total indifference to human life and a blatant disregard of international obligations."
ROKS Cheonan sinking - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sun, 24 May 2015 13:00
The ROKS Cheonan sinking occurred on 26 March 2010, when the Cheonan, a Republic of Korea Navy ship carrying 104 personnel, sank off the country's west coast near Baengnyeong Island in the Yellow Sea, killing 46 seamen. A South Korean-led official investigation carried out by a team of international experts from South Korea, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and Sweden[2][3] presented a summary of its investigation on 20 May 2010, concluding that the warship had been sunk by a North Koreantorpedo[4][5] fired by a midget submarine.[6]
North Korea denied that it was responsible for the sinking.[7] North Korea's further offer to aid an open investigation was disregarded.[8]China dismissed the official scenario presented by South Korea and the United States as not credible.[9] An investigation by the Russian Navy also did not concur with the report.[10] The United Nations Security Council made a Presidential Statement condemning the attack but without identifying the attacker.[11]
Background[edit]Baengnyeong Island is a South Korean island in the Yellow Sea, off the Ongjin peninsula in North Korea. It lies less than 10 miles (16 km) from the North Korean coast, and is over 100 miles (160 km) from the South Korean mainland. The island is to the south and west of the Northern Limit Line, the de factomaritime boundary dividing South Korea (ROK) from North Korea (DPRK).
The area is the site of considerable tension between the two states; although it was provided in the armistice agreement for the stalemate of the Korean war that the islands themselves belonged to the South, the sea boundary was not covered by the armistice, and the sea is claimed by the North.
The situation is further complicated by the presence of a rich fishing ground used by DPRK and Chinese fishing vessels, and there have been numerous clashes over the years between naval vessels from both sides attempting to police what both sides regard as their territorial waters. These have been referred to as "crab wars".[15]
History of ship sinkings on both sides[edit]In late May 2010, Bruce Cumings, Distinguished Service Professor in History at the University of Chicago and an expert on Korean affairs, commented that the sinking should be regarded as part of a two-sided tense situation in a "no-man's land" which has led to previous incidents.[16] He noted a confrontation in November 2009, in which several North Korean sailors died, and an additional incident in 1999, when 30 North Koreans were killed and 70 wounded when their ship sank.[16] In both incidents, the North Koreans were the first to open fire, though in the 1999 incident the South Koreans escalated matters by initiating a campaign of boat 'bumping' in order to stop what the South saw as a violation of its maritime borders. Considering these previous incidents, Cumings said that the Cheonan sinking was "ripped out of context, the context of a continuing war that has never ended."[16]
Military concerns[edit]General Walter Sharp, Commander of the South Korea-U.S. Combined Forces Command at the time, had on 24 March, testified before the US House Appropriations Committee, in part, on the need to strengthen the ROK-U.S. alliance, the need for on-site advanced training of the Air Force, the need to improve the quality of life and provide tour normalization for troops serving one-year tours, planned relocation of bases, and the scheduled 2012 transition of Operational Control (OPCON) to ROK hands. He also warned of the possibility that North Korea could "even launch an attack on the ROK."[17]
Sinking of Cheonan[edit]On the night of the sinking the U.S. and South Korea navies were engaged in joint anti-submarine warfare exercises 75 miles away from the site of the sinking.[18][19][20] This exercise was part of the annual Key Resolve/Foal Eagle war exercise, described as "one of the world's largest simulated exercises", and involved many modern U.S. and South Korean warships.[21][22]
On Friday, 26 March 2010, an explosion was reported to have occurred near the Cheonan, a Pohang-classcorvette,[23] near the stern of the ship at 9:22 pm local time (12:22 pmGMT/UTC).[24][25] This caused the ship to break in half five minutes afterward, sinking at approximately 9:30 pm(2130 hrs) local time about 1 nautical mile (1.9 km) off the south-west coast of Baengnyeong Island.[26][27][28]
Some initial reports suggested that the ship was hit by a North Korean torpedo, and that a South Korean vessel had returned fire,[29] however the South Korean Ministry of Defense stressed in the first press briefings after the sinking that there was "no indication of North Korean involvement".[30][31] Cheonan was operating its active sonar at the time, which did not detect any nearby submarine.[18] Several theories have subsequently been put forth by various agencies as to the cause of the sinking.[32][33] Early reports also suggested that South Korean navy units had shot at an unidentified ship heading towards North Korea, however a defense official later said that this target may have been a flock of birds that were misidentified on radar.[34]
The ship had a crew of 104 men at the time of sinking, and 58 crewmembers were rescued by 11:13 pm local time.[25] The remaining 46 crew died.[35]
The stern of the Cheonan settled on its left side in 130 metres (430 ft) deep water close to the site of the sinking, but the bow section took longer to sink and settled overturned in 20 metres (66 ft) of water 6.4 kilometres (3.5 nmi) away with a small part of the hull visible above the water.[27][35][36]
Rescue efforts[edit]Initially six South Korean navy and two South Korean coast guard ships assisted in the rescue as well as aircraft from the Republic of Korea Air Force.[37] It was reported on March 27 that hopes of finding the 46 missing crew alive were fading. Survival time in the water was estimated at about two hours and large waves were hampering rescue attempts.[38][39] After the sinking, President Lee said that recovery of any survivors was the main priority. Air was pumped into the ship to keep any survivors alive.[40]
During the course of the search and rescue effort over 24 military vessels were involved,[41] including four U.S. Navy vessels, the USNS Salvor, the USS Harpers Ferry, the USS Curtis Wilbur, and the USS Shiloh.[20][36][42]
On 30 March 2010 it was reported that one South Korean naval diver had died after losing consciousness whilst searching for survivors and another had been hospitalised.[43]
On 3 April 2010, South Korean officials said that a private fishing boat involved in the rescue operations had collided with a Cambodian freighter, sinking the fishing boat and killing at least two people, with seven reported missing.[44] The same day, the Joint Chiefs of Staff of South Korea said that one body of the 46 missing sailors had been found.[44][45]
Later on 3 April 2010 South Korea called off the rescue operation for the missing sailors, after families of the sailors asked for the operation to be suspended for fear of further casualties among the rescue divers. The military's focus then shifted towards salvage operations, which were predicted to take up to a month to complete.[44]
Recovery[edit]On 15 April 2010, the stern section of the ship was winched from the seabed by a large floating crane, drained of water and placed on a barge for transportation to the Pyongtaek navy base.[46] On 23 April 2010, the stack was recovered.[25] The same crane raised the bow portion of the Cheonan on 24 April 2010.[47] The salvaged parts of the ship were taken to Pyongtaek navy base for an investigation into the cause of the sinking by both South Korean and foreign experts.[46]
The bodies of 40 personnel out of 46 who went down with the ship were recovered.[48]
Cause of sinking[edit]Early speculation[edit]South Korean officials initially downplayed suggestions that North Korea was responsible for the sinking.[30] On 29 March 2010, following an underwater examination of the wreck, Defense Minister Kim Tae-Young stated that the explosion may have been caused by a North Korean mine, possibly left over from the Korean War.[41] On 2 April Kim said it was a "likely possibility" that a torpedo had sunk the Cheonan.[49]
The South Korean newspaper The Chosun Ilbo reported on 31 March 2010 that a North Korean submarine was observed near the site of the sinking by South Korean and American intelligence agencies.[50] Another report from the same newspaper said that Captain Choi Won-il of the Cheonan made a call on his mobile phone right after the explosion in which he said "We are being attacked by the enemy."[51]
On 30 March 2010, Defense ministry spokesman Won Tae-jae, dismissed speculation that a submarine could have torpedoed the ship, stating that no "extraordinary activities" had been confirmed.[52] On 2 April 2010, The Chosun Ilbo cited unnamed defense agency officers as speculating that a torpedo from a North Korean two-man submersible could have sunk the ship, as there was so far no evidence of an internal explosion.[53]
In a separate statement later the same day, the Defense Ministry said that its investigation had ruled out the possibility of an internal explosion, as testimony from survivors had not supported such a conclusion.[42] The ministry reiterated that it would not speculate on the cause until its investigation was complete.[53]
Director of the Pusan National University Ship Structural Mechanics Laboratory, Jeom Kee Paik,[54] suggested Cheonan may have grounded in the area's shallow water, which is not usually navigated, and took in water from the damaged bottom before breaking in two. South Korean media reports had stated that the hull was found to have split cleanly, suggesting a non-explosive cause.[55]
On 7 April 2010, the chairman of the South Korean National Assembly's Defense Committee, Kim Hak-song, stated that damage to the ship was of a type that is "inevitably the result of a torpedo or mine attack."[56] The same day, National Intelligence Service Director Won Sei-hoon stated that according to their intelligence, and that obtained from the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, there was no unusual North Korean activity on the day of the sinking,[57] confirming an earlier similar statement by General Walter Sharp, Commander of the ROK-US Combined Forces.[58]
On 25 April 2010, Defense Minister Kim said that the most likely cause of the explosion that sank the Cheonan was a torpedo; his statements were the first time that a South Korean official publicly cited such a cause. Kim said that "A bubble jet caused by a heavy torpedo is thought to be the most likely thing to be blamed, but various other possibilities are also under review." A bubble jet is caused by an underwater explosion which changes the pressure of water, and whose force can cause a ship to break apart. The bubble jet theory was supported by one of the investigators into the incident, who had said that there was no evidence that an explosion had occurred in contact with a ship, and that a non-contact explosion had most likely broken the ship in half.[59]
The Hankyoreh newspaper and other sources have questioned how an anti-submarine corvette such as the Cheonan in the middle of a joint South Korean-U.S. naval exercise could have failed to detect an attacking submarine or at least its torpedo.[60]
Investigation[edit]After raising the ship, South Korea and the United States formed a joint investigative team to discover the cause of the sinking.[61] Later South Korea announced that it intended to form an international group to investigate the sinking including Canada, Britain, Sweden and Australia.[62][63]
On 16 April 2010, Yoon Duk-yong, co-chairman of the investigation team, said "In an initial examination of the Cheonan's stern, South Korean and U.S. investigators found no traces showing that the hull had been hit directly by a torpedo. Instead, we've found traces proving that a powerful explosion caused possibly by a torpedo had occurred underwater. The explosion might have created a bubble jet that eventually generated an enormous shock wave and caused the ship to break in two."[64] Traces of an explosive chemical substance used in torpedoes, RDX, were later found in May 2010.[65]
The Washington Post reported on 19 May 2010, that a team of investigators from Sweden, Australia, Britain, and the United States had concluded that a North Korean torpedo sank the ship. The team found that the torpedo used was identical to a North Korean torpedo previously captured by South Korea.[66] On 25 April 2010, the investigative team announced that the cause of the sinking was a non-contact underwater explosion.[67]
On 7 May 2010, a government official said that a team of South Korean civilian and military experts[68] had found traces of RDX, a high explosive more powerful than TNT and used in torpedoes.[69] On 19 May 2010, the discovery of a fragment of metal containing a serial number similar to one on a North Korean torpedo salvaged by South Korea in 2003 was announced.[70]
In their summary for the United Nations Security Council, the investigation group was described as the "Joint Civilian-Military Investigation Group of the Republic of Korea with the participation of international experts from Australia, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States, and the Multinational Combined Intelligence Task Force, comprising the Republic of Korea, Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States," which consisted of "25 experts from 10 top Korean expert agencies, 22 military experts, 3 experts recommended by the National Assembly, and 24 foreign experts constituting 4 support teams".[2]
Joint Civilian-Military Investigation Group (JIG) report[edit]Summary[edit]On 20 May the South Korean-led investigation group released a summary of their report[3][25][71] in which they concluded that the sinking of the warship was the result of a North Korean torpedo attack, commenting that "The evidence points overwhelmingly to the conclusion that the torpedo was fired by a North Korean submarine." The inquiry also alleged that a group of small submarines, escorted by a support ship, departed from a North Korean naval base a few days before the sinking.[4][72][73][74] The specific weapon used was alleged to be a North Korean manufactured CHT-02D torpedo, of which substantial parts were recovered.[75]
According to the Chosun Ilbo, South Korean investigators told their journalists that they believe that one or two North Korean submarines, a Yono class submarine and the other a Sang-O class submarine, departed a naval base at Cape Bipagot accompanied by a support ship on 23 March 2010. One of the subs, according to the report, detoured around to the west side of Baengnyeong Island, arriving on 25 March 2010. There, it waited about 30 meters under the ocean's surface in waters 40 to 50 meters deep for the Cheonan to pass by. Investigators believe that the submarine fired the torpedo from about 3 km away. The attack appears to have been timed for a period when tidal forces in the area were slow. The North Korean vessels returned to port on 28 March 2010.[6] Such detailed information on the North Korean submarine movements, and attack position, was not in the official summary or final report.[76]
The torpedo parts recovered at the site of the explosion by a dredging ship on 15 May which include the 5—5 bladed contra-rotating propellers, propulsion motor and a steering section, was claimed to match the schematics of the CHT-02D torpedo included in introductory brochures provided to foreign countries by North Korea for export purposes. An incorrect, though similar, torpedo schematic had by mistake been shown at the televised RIG briefing for comparison with the recovered parts.[77] The correct schematic has never been made public. The markings in Hangul, which reads "1ë²" (or No. 1 in English), found inside the end of the propulsion section, is consistent with the marking of a previously obtained North Korean torpedo, but inconsistent with one found seven years ago, which is marked "4í¸."[60] Critics have pointed out that 'í¸" is the term used most often in the North, rather than "ë²."[60] Russian and Chinese torpedoes are marked in their respective languages. The CHT-02D torpedo manufactured by North Korea utilizes acoustic/wake homing and passive acoustic tracking methods.[3]
Simulations indicated that 250 kg of TNT equivalent explosive at 6 to 9 m depth, 3 m to the port of the center line, would result in the damage seen to the Cheonan.[78]
The full report had not been released to the public at this time,[79] though the South Korean legislature was provided with a five-page synopsis of the report.[80]
Full report[edit]A draft copy of the report was obtained by Time magazine in early August 2010, before the final report was released. According to Time, the report assessed eleven different possible reasons why the ship sank, all of which were dismissed except for that of North Korean involvement, which is considered a "high possibility."[79]
In support of this conclusion, the report says that witnesses had reported seeing flashes of light or sounds of an explosion, as well as that the US Navy analysis of the wreck concluded that a torpedo containing 250 kilograms of explosives had collided with Cheonan six to nine meters below the waterline. Damage to the hull supported this conclusion, while inconsistent with what would be expected if the ship had run aground or had been hit with a missile.[79]
On 13 September 2010, the full report was released.[76] It concluded that Cheonan had been sunk due to a torpedo explosion, which, while not having contacted the ship, exploded several meters from the hull of the ship and caused a shockwave and bubble effect of sufficient strength to severely damage and sink the ship.[81]
South Korea skepticism[edit]According to a survey conducted by Seoul National University's Institute for Peace and Unification Studies, less than one third of South Koreans trust the findings of the multinational panel.[82][83] A later survey by the JoongAng Ilbo newspaper in 2011 found that 68 percent of South Koreans trusted the government's report that the Cheonan was sunk by a North Korean submersible.[84] Lee Jung Hee, a lawmaker with the opposition Democratic Labor Party, was sued for defamation by seven people at South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff. Lee said during a speech in the national assembly that while the Defense Ministry had said there was no feed from a thermal observation device showing the moment the warship's stern and bow split apart, such a video did exist. Prosecutors then questioned Shin Sang-cheol, who served on the panel that investigated the incident and also runs Seoprise, over his assertion that the Cheonan sank in an accident[85] and that the evidence linking the North to the torpedo was tampered with. The Defense Ministry asked the National Assembly to eject Shin from the panel for "arousing public mistrust."[86][87] Shin stated that he doubted the official conclusion on the sinking, saying that when he looked at the dead sailors' bodies, they bore no signs of an explosion.[80] Shin wrote a letter addressed to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton showing the evidence for his contention that the ship ran aground and then collided with another vessel.[88]
Russian Navy experts assessment[edit]Near the end of May a team of Russian Navy submarine and torpedo experts visited South Korea to conduct an assessment of the South Korean led investigation. The team returned to Russia with samples for further physical-chemical analysis.[90] No official statement on the assessment has been made. It was claimed that the assessment concluded Cheonan was not sunk by a North Korean bubble jet torpedo, but did not come to any firm conclusion about the cause of the sinking.[91]The Hindu quoted a Russian Navy source stating that "after examining the available evidence and the ship wreckage Russian experts came to the conclusion that a number of arguments produced by the international investigation in favour of the DPRK's involvement in the corvette sinking were not weighty enough''.[92]
On 27 July 2010, The Hankyoreh published what it claimed was a detailed summary of the Russian Navy expert team's analysis.[10] According to The Hankyoreh, the Russian investigators concluded that Cheonan touched the sea floor and damaged one of its propellers prior to a non-contact explosion, possibly caused by setting off a mine while the ship was trying to maneuver into deeper water. Visual examination of the torpedo parts South Korea found purportedly indicated that it had been in the water for more than 6 months.[93] On the following day South Korean officials responded with "a full-scale refutation".[94]
On 3 August 2010 Russian UN ambassador Vitaly Churkin stated that his country's investigative report's conclusions into the sinking would not be made public.[95] Withholding the investigation results was seen as insensitive by South Korea, but avoided political damage to a number of states.[96]
Chinese claims[edit]During talks between the American and Chinese governments in late May 2010, Chinese officials were reported by Yoichi Shimatsu, a commentator for the Chinese state-run CCTV-9, to have claimed that the sinking of the Cheonan had been as a result of an American rising mine, which was moored to the seabed and propels itself into a ship detected by sound or magnetics, planted during anti-submarine exercises that were conducted by the South Korean and US navies shortly before the sinking. To back up their claims, the Chinese said that North Korean submarines such as the one believed to have sunk the Cheonan were incapable of moving undetected within South Korean waters, and a rising mine would have damaged the ship by splitting the hull, as was done to the Cheonan, rather than simply holing the vessel as a conventional torpedo does. A conventional torpedo traveling at 40''50 knots would also be completely destroyed upon impact, which was claimed to contradict the torpedo parts found later.[9]
The Daily Telegraph journalist Peter Foster in a blog post noted that while not everyone (including Russia and China) was convinced of the truth of the international inquiry into the ROKS Cheonan Sinking, some conspiracy theories and unanswered questions on the sinking, including one ascribing responsibility of the sinking to a rising mine deployed during a joint US-South Korean Foal Eagle anti-submarine exercises, ought to be read "with a large pinch of salt."[97]
Other international research[edit]A separate investigation conducted by scientists at the University of Manitoba yielded results that conflict with the official investigation's findings. According to the leader of the investigation, residue on the hull of the ship that was claimed to have been aluminum oxide, which is a byproduct of explosions such as that of a torpedo, had a far higher ratio of oxygen to aluminum, leading the researchers to conclude that "we cannot say that the substance adhering to the Cheonan was the explosion byproduct of aluminum oxide."[98] The South Korean Ministry of Defense issued a rebuttal to the findings, saying, "The detonation of explosives containing aluminum occurs within hundreds of thousandths of a second under high temperatures of more than 3,000 degrees Celsius and high pressures of more than 200,000 atm, and most of it becomes noncrystalline aluminum oxide."[98]
A report published online by Nature on 8 July 2010 noted several instances of groups or individuals disagreeing with the official report.[32][99] The article also notes the rebuttal of those disagreements by analysts and government officials, with one analyst arguing that the sinking was "consistent with North Korea's behaviour in the past."[32]
In 2013 an academic paper was published analysing the available seismic data. It calculated that the sesmic data recorded would be accounted for by a 136 kg TNT-equivalent charge, similar to the explosive yield of land control mines which had been abandoned in the vicinity.[100][101] In 2014 an academic paper was published analysing the spectra of the seismic signals and hydroacoustic reverberation waves generated. The paper found it doubtful that the vibrations of the water column were caused by an underwater explosion, instead finding that the recorded seismic spectra were consistent with the natural vibration frequencies of a large submarine with a length of around 113'‰m. This raised the possibility that the sinking was caused by a collision with a large submarine, rather than an explosion.[102]
Reaction[edit]South Korea[edit]South Korean PresidentLee Myung-bak convened an emergency meeting of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Orders were given to the military to concentrate on rescuing the survivors. In Seoul, police were put on alert. At the time, a spokesman for the South Korean military stated that there was no evidence that North Korea had been involved in the incident.[26] A large group of relatives of the missing sailors protested outside the navy base at Pyeongtaek over the lack of information provided to them.[38] On 28 March relatives were taken to the site of the sunken vessel. Some relatives stated that survivors had claimed that the Cheonan had been in a poor state of repair.[28] The Korean media have raised the issue of why the sister ship Sokcho, which was operating nearby, did not come to the rescue of the sinking ship but instead fired shots at radar images which were later confirmed to be migratory birds.[103]
On 5 April 2010, President Lee Myung-bak visited Baengnyeong Island. He reiterated that it was risky to speculate over the cause, and the joint military and civilian investigation team would determine the cause. He said, "We have to find the cause in a way that satisfies not only our people but also the international community".[104] The president of South Korea has mourned the victims and said that he will respond "resolutely" to the sinking without yet laying blame for its cause.[105]
On 24 May Lee Myung-bak said the South would "resort to measures of self-defense in case of further military provocation of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea." He also supported readopting the official description of the North as the "main enemy."[106]
South Korea pursued measures from the United Nations Security Council after the incident, although the language used in the country's statements towards such measures became progressively weaker. In announcements made soon after the sinking, the government said that any draft presented by South Korea would explicitly state that North Korea was responsible for the incident, but by early July, the language had been reduced to only referring to "those responsible," in response to concerns from Russia.[107]
Diplomatic[edit]Since the incident, the South Korean government has been reluctant to engage in further diplomacy with North Korea over disputes such as North Korea's nuclear weapons program. In response to a request by China, in April 2011 South Korea agreed to talks, but South Korean government officials commented that an apology from North Korea for the sinking would probably be necessary to facilitate any significant progress in the dialogues.[108]
Military[edit]On 2 May it was reported that South Korea's naval minister vowed "retaliation" against those responsible.[109] Admiral Kim Sung-chan, at a publicly televised funeral for the Cheonan's dead crew members in Pyeongtaek, stated that, "We will not sit back and watch whoever caused this pain for our people. We will hunt them down and make them pay a bigger price."[110]
On 4 May President Lee proposed "extensive reformations" for the South Korean military regarding the sinking incident.[111] After the official report was released South Korea has said that it will take strong countermeasures against the North.[112]
Trade[edit]On 24 May 2010, South Korea announced it would stop nearly all its trade with North Korea as a result of the official report blaming North Korea for the sinking. South Korea also announced it would prohibit North Korean vessels from using its shipping channels.[113] According to the New York Times, the trade embargoes were "the most serious action" South Korea could take short of military action.[114] The United States openly supported South Korea's decision.[115] The embargo is expected to cost the North Korean economy roughly $200 million a year.[116] The decision to cease trade was followed up with the United States and South Korea announcing they would conduct joint naval exercises in response to the sinking.[117]
Psychological warfare[edit]The South Korean military announced that it would resume psychological warfare directed at North Korea. This would include both loudspeaker and FM radio propaganda broadcasts across the DMZ. Meanwhile, a North Korean military commander stated, ''If South Korea establishes new psychological warfare services, we will fire against them in order to eliminate them,'' according to a report carried by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).[118]
South Korea began propaganda broadcasts into North Korea by radio on 25 May. North Korea responded by putting its troops on high alert, and severed most remaining ties and communications with South Korea in response to what it called a "smear campaign" by Seoul.[119] South Korean military propaganda FM broadcasts were resumed at 18:00 (local time) starting with the song "HuH" by K-pop band 4minute.[120]
As part of the propaganda broadcasts, South Korea reinstalled loudspeakers at eleven places along the DMZ. There was originally a plan to also use electronic signs, although due to cost, the plan was reportedly being reconsidered. On 13 June, South Korean media announced that the South Korean Defense Minister, Kim Tae-young, had said that anti-North Korea broadcasts were planned to resume after the UN Security Council took action against North Korea in response to the sinking of the Cheonan.[121]
Suppressing internal dissent[edit]Discourse over the events leading to the sinking of the Cheonan was tightly controlled by the South Korean government in the months after the incident. On 8 May 2010, a former senior presidential secretary who served under Roh Moo-hyun, Park Seon-won,[122] was charged with libel by South Korea's Defense Minister, Kim Tae-young, over comments he made during a 22 April interview on MBC radio asking for greater disclosure from the military and government. Park Seon-won's response to the charge was: "I asked for the disclosure of information for a transparent and impartial investigation into the cause of the Cheonan sinking;" he added that "the libel suit seeks to silence public suspicion over the incident."[123] South Korea's Minister of Public Administration and Security, Maeng Hyung-kyu, announced on 20 May 2010 that the government was stepping up efforts to prosecute people who spread "groundless rumors" over the internet: "Anyone who makes false reports or articles about the incident could seriously damage national security. We will not let these be the basis of any risks the nation faces." Moreover, he announced the government would step up efforts to prevent "illegal gatherings" regarding the sinking of the Cheonan.[124]
A South Korean military oversight board, the Board of Inspection and Audit, has accused senior South Korean naval leaders of lying and hiding information. Said the board, "Military officers deliberately left out or distorted key information in their report to senior officials and the public because they wanted to avoid being held to account for being unprepared."[80]
In 2013, a documentary film named "Project Cheonan Ship" was released in South Korea about the sinking, including a number of possible alternative causes for the sinking. Members and relatives of the South Korean navy sought a court injunction to block the film's release on the basis that the film distorted the facts. The injunction was denied in court, however, a major cimema chain, Megabox, withdrew the film after warnings from conservative groups that they planned to picket showings the film.[125][126]
North Korea[edit]The North Korean Central News Agency released an official response to the investigation on 28 May 2010, asserting, amongst other things, that it is unbelievable that part of a torpedo doing so much damage to a ship would survive:
"Besides, the assertion that the screw shaft and engine remained undamaged and unchanged in shape is also a laughing shock. Even U.S. and British members of the international investigation team, which had blindly backed the south Korean regime in its 'investigation', were perplexed at the exhibit in a glass box."[127]
On 17 April 2010, it was reported that North Korea officially denied having had anything to do with the sinking, responding to what it referred to as "The puppet military warmongers, right-wing conservative politicians and the group of other traitors in South Korea".[128] An article from the official (North) Korean Central News Agency entitled "Military Commentator Denies Involvement in Ship Sinking" stated that the event was an accident.
... we have so far regarded the accident as a regretful accident that should not happen in the light of the fact that many missing persons and most of rescued members of the crew are fellow countrymen forced to live a tiresome life in the puppet army.[129]
On 21 May 2010, North Korea offered to send their own investigative team to review the evidence compiled by South Korea,[130] and the Hankyoreh quoted Kim Yeon-chul, professor of unification studies at Inje University, commenting on the offer: "It is unprecedented in the history of inter-Korean relations for North Korea to propose sending an investigation team in response to an issue that has been deemed a 'military provocation by North Korea,'"and thus "The Cheonan situation has entered a new phase."[131]
The North also warned of a wide range of hostile reactions to any move by the South to hold it accountable for the sinking.
If the South puppet group comes out with 'response' and 'retaliation', we will respond strongly with ruthless punishment including the total shutdown of North-South ties, abrogation of the North-South agreement on non-aggression and abolition of all North-South cooperation projects.[132]
On 24 May, new reports indicated Kim Jong-Il had ordered the North's forces to be ready for combat a week before.[133] The next day, North Korea released a list of measures that it will take in response to South Korea's sanctions. This would include the cutting of all ties and communications, except for the Kaesong industrial complex. They would revert to a wartime footing in regard to South Korea and disallow any South Korean ships or aircraft to enter the territory of North Korea.[134]
On 27 May, North Korea announced that it would scrap an agreement aimed at preventing accidental naval clashes with South Korea. It also announced that any South Korean vessel found crossing the disputed maritime border would be immediately attacked.[135]
On 28 May, the official (North) KCNA stated that "it is the United States that is behind the case of Cheonan. The investigation was steered by the U.S. from its very outset." It also accused the United States of manipulating the investigation and named the administration of US President Barack Obama directly of using the case for "escalating instability in the Asia-Pacific region, containing big powers and emerging unchallenged in the region."[136]
On 29 May, North Korea warned the United Nations to be wary of evidence presented in the international investigation, likening the case to the claims of weapons of mass destruction that the U.S. used to justify its war against Iraq in 2003 and stated that "the U.S. is seriously mistaken if it thinks it can occupy the Korean Peninsula just as it did Iraq with sheer lies." The North Korea foreign minister warned the United Nations Security Council of risks of being "misused". It also accused the U.S. of joining South Korea in putting "China into an awkward position and keep hold on Japan and South Korea as its servants." High ranking North Korean military officials denounced the international investigation and said the North does not have the type of submarines that supposedly carried out the attack. They also dismissed claims regarding writings on the torpedo and clarified that "when we put serial numbers on weapons, we engrave them with machines." South Korea's Yonhap News quoted South Korean officials as saying the North has about 10 of the Yeono-classsubmarines.[87]
On 2 November, KCNA published a detailed rebuttal of the South Korean joint investigative team report.[137]
The Rodong Sinmun summarized research by saying that the "probability of a torpedo attack on (the) Cheonan Warship" was 0%.[138]
International[edit]When the official report on the sinking was released on 20 May there was widespread international condemnation of the North's actions. China was one of few exceptions, simply terming the incident "unfortunate" and "urged stability on the peninsula". This was speculated to be China's concern for instability in the Korean peninsula.[112]
On 14 June 2010, South Korea presented the results of its investigation to United Nations Security Council members.[2][139] In a subsequent meeting with council members North Korea stated that it had nothing to do with the incident.[140] On 9 July 2010 the United Nations Security Council made a Presidential Statement condemning the attack but without identifying the attacker.[11][141] China had resisted U.S. calls for a tougher line against North Korea.[142]
Later reports[edit]A member of the North Korean cabinet who defected to the south in 2011, said on 7 December 2012 that the crew of the North Korean submarine which sank Cheonan had been honored by the North Korean military and government. The defector, known by the alias "Ahn Cheol-nam", stated that the captain, co-captain, engineer, and boatswain of the mini-sub which sank the Cheonan had been awarded "Hero of the DPRK" in October 2010.[143]
See also[edit]References[edit]^http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=aXd_gvnsSEQo&pos=8^ abcPark In-kook (4 June 2010), "Letter dated 4 June 2010 from the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Security Council"(PDF), United Nations Security Council, S/2010/281, retrieved 11 July 2010 ^ abc"Investigation Result on the Sinking of ROKS Cheonan '' report statement". Ministry of National Defense R.O.K. 20 May 2010. News item No 592. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^ ab"Results Confirm North Korea Sank Cheonan". Daily NK. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^Barrowclough, Anne (20 May 2010). "'All out war' threatened over North Korea attack on warship Cheonan". The Times (London). Retrieved 25 May 2010. ^ ab"How Did N. Korea Sink The Cheonan?". Chosun Ilbo. 21 May 2010. Retrieved 21 May 2010. ^"Press Conference on Situation in Korean Peninsula: DPRK Permanent Representative to the United Nations Sin Son Ho". Department of Public Information (United Nations). 15 June 2010. Retrieved 11 July 2010. ^Watson Paul (19 July 2012). South Korea good, North Korea bad? Not a very useful outlook.The Guardian. Retrieved 26 December 2012.^ abYoichi Shimatsu, (27 May 2010). "Did an American Mine Sink South Korean Ship?". New America Media. Retrieved 5 June 2010. ^ ab"Russian Navy Expert Team's analysis on the Cheonan incident". The Hankyoreh. 27 July 2010. Retrieved 28 July 2010. ^ ab"Presidential Statement: Attack on Republic of Korea Naval Ship 'Cheonan'". United Nations Security Council (United Nations). 9 July 2010. S/PRST/2010/13. Retrieved 11 July 2010. ^Ryoo, Moo Bong. (2009). "The Korean Armistice and the Islands," p. 13 (at PDF-p. 21). Strategy research project at the U.S. Army War College; retrieved 26 Nov 2010.^"Factbox: What is the Korean Northern Limit Line?" Reuters (UK). 23 November 2010; retrieved 26 Nov 2010.^Van Dyke, Jon et al. "The North/South Korea Boundary Dispute in the Yellow (West) Sea," Marine Policy 27 (2003), 143''158; note that "Inter-Korean MDL" is cited because it comes from an academic source and the writers were particular enough to include in quotes as we present it. The broader point is that the maritime demarcation line here is NOT a formal extension of the Military Demarcation Line; compare "NLL'--Controversial Sea Border Between S.Korea, DPRK, "People's Daily (PRC), 21 November 2002; retrieved 22 Dec 2010^"Northern Limit Line (NLL) West Sea Naval Engagements". globalsecurity.org. Retrieved 31 March 2010. ^ abc"Historian Bruce Cumings: US Stance on Korea Ignores Tensions Rooted in 65-Year-Old Conflict; North Korea Sinking Could Be Response to November '09 South Korea Attack". Democracy Now!. 27 May 2010. Retrieved 26 November 2010. ^"Statement of General Walter L. Sharp, commander, United Nations command; commander, Republic of Korea-United States combined forces command; and commander, United States forces Korea, before the House Appropriations Committee, MILCON/Veterans Affairs subcommittee, 24 March 2010"(PDF). Committee on Appropriation, US House of Representatives. 24 March 2010. Retrieved 28 November 2010. ^ abJelinek, Pauline (5 June 2010). "AP Enterprise: Sub attack was near US-SKorea drill - Boston.com". The Boston Globe. Jean H. Lee and Kwang-Tae Kim in Seoul contributed to this report. (Boston: NYTC). Associated Press. ISSN 0743-1791. OCLC 66652431. Archived from the original on 4 April 2014. Retrieved 8 March 2012. ^Associated Press (5 June 2010). "'Sub Attack Came Near Drill'". military.com. Archived from the original on 8 June 2010. Retrieved 4 April 2014. ^ ab"U.S. Support to ROK Salvage Operations Changes Leadership". Amphibious Force Seventh Fleet Public Affairs. 4 April 2010. Retrieved 1 February 2014. ^Lance Cpl. Claudio A. Martinez (11 March 2010). "Exercises Key Resolve/Foal Eagle 2010 kick off". U.S. Marine Corp. Archived from the original on 2010-06-05. Retrieved 26 May 2010. ^Kim Myong Chol (5 May 2010). "Pyongyang sees US role in Cheonan sinking". Asia Times Online. Retrieved 26 May 2010. ^"Report: South Korean navy ship sinks". CNN. 27 March 2010. Retrieved 26 March 2010. ^"Chronology of the Cheonan Sinking". Korea Times. 29 April 2010. Retrieved 25 May 2010. ^ abcd"Investigation Activities on the Sinking of ROKS "Cheonan" '' investigation video". Ministry of National Defense R.O.K. 20 May 2010. Linked from news item No 592. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^ ab"South Korean navy ship sinks near sea border with North". BBC. 26 March 2010. Retrieved 26 March 2010. ^ ab"Poor weather halts search of South Korea sunken warship". BBC. 31 March 2010. Retrieved 31 March 2010. ^ abMark TranSi-Young Lee and Hyung-Jin Kim (28 March 2010). "Angry families visit site of sunken SKorean ship". Associated Press. Retrieved 28 March 2010. ^Kim Sengupta (27 March 2010). "Warship mystery raises Korean tensions". The Independent (London). ^ ab"South Korea urges restraint over sunken warship". BBC News. 1 April 2010. ^"Businessweek - Business News, Stock market & Financial Advice". Businessweek.com. Retrieved 30 October 2014. ^ abc"Controversy over South Korea's sunken ship". Nature. 8 July 2010. Retrieved 9 July 2010. ^Gregg, Donald P. (31 August 2010). "Testing North Korean Waters". The New York Times. ^Tania Branigan and Caroline Davies (26 March 2010). "South Korean naval ship sinks in disputed area after 'explosion'". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 30 March 2010. ^ abEvan Ramstad (29 March 2010). "Divers Reach South Korean Wreckage". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 9 July 2010. ^ abEdward Baxter (May 2010). "Salvor supports recovery of South Korean navy ship"(PDF). Sealift (Military Sealift Command, U.S. Navy). p. 3. Retrieved 9 April 2012. ^Crilly, Rob (26 March 2010). "South Korea investigates whether North involved in ship sinking". The Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 26 March 2010. ^ ab"Hopes fading for South Korea sailors". BBC News. 27 March 2010. Retrieved 27 March 2010. ^Lee, Tae-hoon (28 March 2010). "More Questions Raised Than Answered Over Sunken Ship". The Korea Times. Retrieved 28 March 2010. ^South Korea rules out navy ship sunk by North Korea, Reuters, Jo Yonghak, 27 March 2010^ ab"Sunken section of South Korean naval vessel found". BBC News. 29 March 2010. Retrieved 29 March 2010. ^ ab"South Koreans hold out hope for sailors missing after ship explosion". Stars and Stripes. Retrieved 3 April 2010. ^"Diver dies at South Korean warship rescue site". BBC News. 30 March 2010. Retrieved 30 March 2010. ^ abcKwang-Tae Kim (3 April 2010). "SKorea stops underwater search for missing sailors". The Associated Press. Retrieved 3 April 2010. ^"Nine missing as S Korean boat sinks in warship search". BBC News. 3 April 2010. Retrieved 3 April 2010. ^ ab"Stern of South Korea naval ship lifted from sea bed". BBC News. 15 April 2010. Retrieved 15 April 2010. ^Lee, Tae-hoon (23 April 2010). "Front Half of Cheonan to Be Raised Today". Retrieved 25 May 2010. ^"Asia-Pacific '-- Funeral held for S Korean sailors". Al Jazeera English. 29 April 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^"South Korea says torpedo may have sunk navy ship". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2 April 2010. [dead link]^"N. Korean Submarine 'Left Base Before the Cheonan Sank'". The Chosun Ilbo. Retrieved 3 April 2010. ^"Cheonan Captain 'Reported Attack'". The Chosun Ilbo. Retrieved 3 April 2010. ^"South Korea urges restraint over sunken warship". BBC. 1 April 2010. Retrieved 2 April 2010. ^ abThe Chosun Ilbo, "Suspicion Of N. Korean Hand In Sinking Mounts", 2 April 2010.^"Dr. Jeom Paik, MarineTalk Advisory Board". MarineTalk. Retrieved 8 July 2010. ^Kim Jae-Hwan (1 April 2010). "South Korea hunts for clues to warship disaster". AFP. Retrieved 2 April 2010. ^"Lawmaker Points to Signs Linking N. Korean Sub to Shipwreck". The Chosun Ilbo. 7 April 2010. Retrieved 7 April 2010. ^"NIS says N. Korean attack on Cheonan impossible sans Kim Jong-il approval". Hank Yoreh. 7 April 2010. Retrieved 7 April 2010. ^Hyung-Jin Kim (6 April 2010). "U.S., S. Korea to jointly probe ship sinking". Navy Times. Associated Press. Retrieved 15 March 2012. ^Sang-Hun, Choe (25 April 2010). "South Korea Cites Torpedo Attack in Ship Sinking". The New York Times. Retrieved 25 April 2010. ^ abc"Questions raised following Cheonan announcement". The Hankyoreh. 21 May 2010. Retrieved 8 July 2010. ^"INSIDE JoongAng Daily". Joongangdaily.joins.com. 7 April 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^(AFP) '' 12 Apr 2010 (12 April 2010). "AFP: Australians to join probe into S.Korea warship sinking". Google. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^"Canadian Naval Expertise to Assist in Multinational Investigation into the Cheonan Sinking". Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada. 16 May 2010. Retrieved 16 May 2010. ^Jung Sung-ki (19 April 2010). "N. Korean Submarines Pose Grave Threat to Security". Seoul: Korea Times. Retrieved 25 April 2010. ^"S. Korea confirms detection of explosive chemical in sunken warship". Xinhua. 10 May 2010. ^Pomfret, John; Harden, Blaine (19 May 2010). "South Korea to officially blame North Korea for March torpedo attack on warship". Washington Post. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^"Cheonan Analysis Reveals Non-Contact Cause". Daily NK. 26 April 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^Excerpts: South Korea ship sinking report, BBC, 20 May 2010^Explosives from torpedo found on sunken ship, by Lee Tae-hoonKorea Times, 7 May 2010^"Probe IDs torpedo that sunk Cheonan: sources". JoongAng Daily. 20 May 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^Investigation Result on the Sinking of ROKS Cheonan '' Press Summary(PDF). The Joint Civilian-Military Investigation Group (Report) (Ministry of National Defense R.O.K. / BBC). 20 May 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^Adam Brookes (20 May 2010). "'North Korean torpedo' sank South's navy ship '-- report". BBC News. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^"World News Australia '-- North Korea 'sank South Korean ship'". Sbs.com.au. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^"North Korea denies sinking warship; South Korea vows strong response". CNN. 20 May 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^Foster, Peter; Moore, Malcolm (20 May 2010). "North Korea condemned by world powers over torpedo attack". London: The Telegraph. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^ ab"Joint Investigation Report On the Attack Against the ROKS Ship Cheonan"(PDF), Ministry of National Defense of the Republic of Korea, September 2010, ISBN 978-89-7677-711-9, retrieved 4 December 2010 ^Kim Deok-hyun (29 June 2010). "Investigators admit using wrong blueprint to show N. Korean torpedo that attacked Cheonan". Yonhap. Retrieved 2 August 2010. ^""Smoking Gun" Briefing Slides". South Korean Ministry of Defense. 20 May 2010. Retrieved 31 July 2010. (PDF version of partial slide set)^ abcPowell, Bill (13 August 2010). "South Korea's Case for How the Cheonan Sank". Time. Retrieved 15 August 2010. ^ abcBarbara Demick and John M. Glionna (23 July 2010). "Doubts surface on North Korea's role in ship sinking". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 24 July 2010. ^"Seoul reaffirms N. Korea's torpedo attack in final report". Korea Times. 13 September 2010. Retrieved 14 September 2010. ^"The Chosun Ilbo (English Edition): Daily News from Korea - Most S.Koreans Skeptical About Cheonan Findings, Survey Shows". Retrieved 30 October 2014. ^"Study: Many South Koreans are skeptical of investigators' report on Cheonan sinking". Stars and Stripes. Retrieved 30 October 2014. ^Christine Kim (22 March 2011). "1 year later, Cheonan still unresolved". JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 7 March 2012. ^S. C. Shin (26 May 2010). "Opinion about Accident of PCC-772"(PDF). Seoprise. Retrieved 8 July 2010. (HTML version)^Ser Myo-ja (20 May 2010). "Probe member summoned on false rumor allegations". JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 8 July 2010. ^ abSouth Korea Faces Domestic Skeptics Over Evidence Against North, by Ben Richardson and Saeromi Shin, Bloomberg News, 30 May 2010^"Letter to Hillary Clinton, U.S. Secretary of State". Seoprise.com. 26 May 2010. Retrieved 1 December 2010. [dead link]^Kwon Hyuk-chul (5 November 2010). "Clamshell covered in white substance discovered on Cheonan torpedo fragment". The Hankyoreh. Retrieved 7 March 2012. ^"Russian experts inspect to probe Cheonan issue at home". RIA Novosti. 8 June 2010. Retrieved 23 July 2010. ^Lee Yeong-in (10 July 2010). "Government protests Russia's Conflicting Cheonan findings". The Hankyoreh. Retrieved 23 July 2010. ^Vladimir Radyuhin (9 June 2010). "Russian probe undercuts Cheonan sinking theory". The Hindu (Chennai, India). Retrieved 23 July 2010. ^"Russia's Cheonan investigation suspects that the sinking Cheonan ship was caused by a mine in water". The Hankyoreh. 27 July 2010. Retrieved 28 July 2010. ^"Lee administration responds to Russian investigation report". The Hankyoreh. 28 July 2010. Retrieved 28 July 2010. ^Yonhap, "Moscow Not To Make Public Probe Outcome On Cheonan''Š''‹s Sinking: Amb. Churkin", 5 August 2010.^Sunny Lee (12 October 2010). "Why Russia doesn't share its Cheonan results with Seoul". Seoul: Korea Times. Retrieved 10 March 2012. ^"Cheonan sinking: top ten conspiracy theories". The Daily Telegraph (London). 4 June 2010. ^ ab"Scientists question Cheonan investigation findings". The Hankyoreh. 28 June 2010. Retrieved 29 June 2010. ^Seunghun Lee and J.J. Suh (15 July 2010). "Rush to Judgment: Inconsistencies in South Korea's Cheonan Report". Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainability. Policy Forum 10-039. Retrieved 24 July 2012. ^So Gu Kim, Yefim Gitterman (10 August 2012). "Underwater Explosion (UWE) Analysis of the ROKS Cheonan Incident". Pure and Applied Geophysics170 (4). doi:10.1007/s00024-012-0554-9. ISSN 0033-4553. Retrieved 5 February 2015. ^Kang Tae-Ho (14 September 2012). "New evidence that Cheonan was sunk by an old mine". Hankyoreh. Retrieved 6 February 2015. ^Hwang Su Kim and Mauro Caresta (20 November 2014). "What Really Caused the ROKS Cheonan Warship Sinking?". Advances in Acoustics and Vibration. doi:10.1155/2014/514346. Retrieved 5 February 2015. ^"Military Under Fire '' Questions Grow Over Crisis Management Capability". Seoul: Korea Times. 1 April 2010. Retrieved 2 April 2010. ^Na Jeong-ju (5 April 2010). "Lee Warns Against Speculation Over Cheonan". Seoul: Korea Times. Retrieved 5 April 2010. ^"South Korea mourns victims of ship sinking". BBC News. 26 April 2010. ^"ROK president gives nod to calling DPRK "main enemy"". Retrieved 30 October 2014. ^"Requested Security Council Cheonan measures weaken considerably". The Hankyoreh. 2 July 2010. Retrieved 2 July 2010. ^The Korea Herald, "Seoul Insists On N. Korea Apology Before Dialogue", 18 April 2011; Yonhap, "Seoul Renews Demand For N. Korea's Responsible Steps Over Deadly Attacks", 18 April 2011.^"S. Korea minister vows retaliation over warship sinking". Hindustan Times. 2 May 2010. Retrieved 2 May 2010. ^The Korea Herald, "Navy Chief Vows Revenge For Cheonan", 30 April 2010.^ê¹ (Kim), ëŒìš° (Dae-u) (4 May 2010). "작ì ,무기,êµ°ëŒì°ì§,문í--ë ë‹¤ë°--ê--ë'¼" è>> ì ë°(C)ì' ê°'í ìê" ["Change All Of Plans, Weapons, Organization, Culture" Military Announces Omni-directional Reform]. Herald Economics (in Korean). Retrieved 5 May 2010. ^ ab"North Korea accused of sinking ship". 20 May 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^Choe Sang-Hun (24 May 2010). "South Korea cuts trade ties with North over sinking". The Age (Melbourne, Australia). Retrieved 24 May 2010. ^Choe Sang-Hun; Shanker, Thom (24 May 2010). "Pentagon and U.N. Chief Put New Pressure on N. Korea". New York Times. Retrieved 24 May 2010. ^Lewis, Leo (24 May 2010). "South Korea bans all trade with North over Cheonan attack". The Times (London). Retrieved 24 May 2010. ^"US backs South Korea in punishing North Korea". News.yahoo.com. 26 March 2010. Retrieved 25 May 2010. [dead link]^"US to conduct naval training exercises with S Korea after attack". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). 24 May 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2010. ^Kim So Yeol (24 May 2010). "Psychological Warfare Will Resume". Daily NK. Retrieved 24 May 2010. ^[1][dead link]^"South Korea resumes border propaganda broadcast with 4minute!". Retrieved 30 October 2014. ^"S. Korea reconsiders installing electronic signboards against N. Korea". Yonhap. 13 June 2010. Retrieved 14 June 2010. ^Korean newspapers have romanized his name as Park Seon-won; however, papers he published while as a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institute indicate he romanizes his name as Sun-won Park.^"Ex-Pres. Secretary Sued for Spreading Cheonan Rumors". 8 May 2010. Retrieved 25 May 2010. ^"Gov't warns against 'groundless rumors'". 20 May 2010. Retrieved 25 May 2010. ^"South Korea: Film raises questions about Cheonan sinking". Index on Censorship. 17 September 2013. Retrieved 6 February 2015. ^Jeyup S. Kwaak (5 September 2013). "Controversial Film About Warship Sinking Opens in Theaters". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 6 February 2015. ^"Military Commentator on Truth behind "Story of Attack by North"". (North) Korean News. Retrieved 28 May 2010. ^Miyoung Kim (17 April 2010). "North Korea denies it sank South's navy ship". Reuters. Retrieved 20 May 2010. ^"Military Commentator Denies Involvement in Ship Sinking ", Korean Central News Agency. 17 April 2010. Retrieved 28 April 2010.^The Hankyoreh, "N. Korea's Reinvestigation Proposal Alters Cheonan Situation", 21 May 2010.^"N. Korea's reinvestigation proposal alters Cheonan situation". Retrieved 30 October 2014. ^Miyoung Kim (21 May 2010). "North Korea declares phase of war with south". Reuters. Retrieved 22 May 2010. ^"Asia-Pacific '' S Korea resumes border broadcasts". Al Jazeera English. Retrieved 25 May 2010. ^Thatcher, Jonathan (25 May 2010). "Text from North Korea statement". Reuters. Retrieved 26 May 2010. ^BBC (27 May 2010). "North Korea scraps South Korea military safeguard pact". BBC. Retrieved 27 May 2010. ^DPRK accuses U.S. of cooking up, manipulating "Cheonan case", by Xiong Tong, Xinhua News Agency, 28 May 2010^""Cheonan" Case Termed Most Hideous Conspiratorial Farce in History". KCNA. 2 November 2010. Retrieved 5 June 2013. ^Ri Song Ho (28 June 2012). "Probability of Torpedo Attack on Cheonan Warship: 0%". rodong.rep.kp. Rodong Sinmun. Retrieved 29 June 2012. ^"North Korea '' Developments at the UN". Permanent Mission of France to the United Nations. July 2010. Retrieved 11 July 2010. ^Sin Son Ho (8 June 2010), "Letter dated 8 June 2010 from the Permanent Representative of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Security Council"(PDF), United Nations Security Council, S/2010/294, retrieved 11 July 2010 ^Harvey Morris (9 July 2010). "North Korea escapes blame over ship sinking". Financial Times. Retrieved 11 July 2010. ^Andrew Jacobs and David E. Sanger (29 June 2010). "China Returns U.S. Criticism Over Sinking of Korean Ship". New York Times. Retrieved 11 July 2010. ^JoongAng Ilbo, N. Korean Sailors Awarded Hero's Title For Attack On S. Korean Warship: Defector, 8 December 2012Further reading[edit]External links[edit]Coordinates: 37°55'²45'"N124°36'²02'"E>> / >>37.92917°N 124.60056°E>> / 37.92917; 124.60056
REPUBLISKUNK-Ex-US envoy urges inter-Korean dialogue
Sun, 24 May 2015 12:46
By Yi Whan-woo
Former U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Donald Gregg refers to himself as a ''broken record'' when it comes to issues related to inter-Korean relations.Based on his experience as Washington's top envoy to Seoul from 1989 to 1993, Gregg, 87, has stressed the importance of dialogue between the two Koreas for years.
He says Seoul's need for greater engagement with Pyongyang has become especially essential these days to avoid being isolated in the region amid the growing Washington-Tokyo alliance.
''I'm like a broken record ever since I've been coming here. I keep saying we've got to talk to the North Koreans, not fight them,'' he said during an interview with The Korea Times at the Millennium Seoul Hilton, Tuesday.
Gregg, who also was a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) officer from the 1950s to 1980s, served as the CIA's station chief in Seoul from 1973 to 1975.
After his retirement as a diplomat, he visited Korea as the chairman of the board of the Korea Society, a U.S.-based non-profit organization which promotes the Seoul-Washington friendship. He held the post until 2009.
He said the hegemonic struggle between the U.S. and China reminds him of the First Sino-Japanese War (1894-1895) and Russo-Japanese War (1904-1905).
''(South) Korea historically calls itself a shrimp among whales. The thing you can do to break that is to get together with the North,'' he said.
Gregg added it is possible that the Korean Peninsula will ''emerge as the geographic center of Northeast Asia'' if the two Koreas manage to mend relations. He pointed out that Russia seeks to build a pipeline and a railroad traversing the two Koreas as part of its Eurasia energy initiatives.
''It's time for the Koreans to take their own destiny in their own hands and find what they can do to reach out to each other.''
His openness toward North Korea conflicts with his career under the government of President Ronald Reagan, a Republican.
Gregg was a National Security Council advisor (1979­-1982) and National Security Advisor to U.S. Vice President George H. W. Bush (1982­-1989).
He called himself ''a skunk at the garden party'' among Republican Party members who maintain hard-line stance toward Pyongyang.
In a letter he sent to U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden in 2009, he proposed inviting North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to Washington for an ''orientation tour.'' The plan did not succeed because of opposition from Republican leaders.
Regarding U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's remark on Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) Monday, Gregg said, ''It's a very complicated issue.''
Kerry mentioned Washington's motives to deploy the disputed advanced U.S. missile defense system.
China and Russia claim THAAD's long-range tracking radar could be used to spy on their military activities, although the U.S. has repeatedly said that its primary purpose is to deter North Korea's attacks.
Gregg is on six-day trip to South Korea until Saturday.
He visited here this time partly to publicize the newly published Korean-language version of his memoir, ''Pot Shards.''
It deals with the incidents that he dealt with during his service years. They include preventing the then-military government twice from killing Kim Dae-jung, a democracy fighter who later became president.
Pundit Press: Emails Show Reporter Grabbed Hillary Clinton's Knee, Asked if she can "Ride in Her Lap to the White House"
Sun, 24 May 2015 06:39
Among other information revealed today from previously secret emails involving Hillary Clinton, one of the oddest facts was that Wall Street Journal reporter Monica Langley asked Ms. Clinton what she dreams about and if she could "ride" in her lap.The email was sent by Caroline Adler, who worked on Ms. Clinton's staff. In it, she describes an extremely weird beginning to an interview between Ms. Langley and Secretary Clinton.
Ms. Adler writes that Langley got uncomfortably close to Clinton, and, midway through the interview, grabbed her knee, and asked her what she dreams about.
She then leaned in and asked, "Hill, can I ride in your lap to the White House?"
You can read the email below:
The email was sent on October 11, 2012. Adler was clearly aware how strange the interaction was, as she began her email ironically, "This will be exciting when it's FOIA'd."Editor's Note: The headline above says that the reporter asked to "ride in" Ms. Clinton's lap. The reporter actually asked to "ride on" Ms. Clinton's lap. We regret the error, small though it is.
Surprised? US has launched a new assault against Russia
Sun, 24 May 2015 05:35
(C) Unknown
If someone had the impression that the visit of Secretary of State John Kerry to the town of Sochi, followed by negotiations with Victoria Nuland, his deputy in Moscow, could be regarded as first steps in the direction of normalization of US-Russian relations, they would be deeply mistaken. In short, Washington, particularly the Obama administration, is trying to solve its problems at the expense or rather with the help of Russia, to ensure the victory of Hillary Clinton in the upcoming elections. However, the United States continues to apply pressure on Russia, using a variety of different strategies.Special attention is now paid to Syria and the weakened regime of Bashar al-Assad in the face of a new armed assault against Damascus. The attempts to trade the support of Syria for a number of concessions on Ukraine and Crimea allegedly made by John Kerry failed. Then Americans attempted blackmail, which is the strategy of choice for Washington in the countries that resist its dictate. On May 19 the Russian embassy in Syria was shelled by militants, presumably Jaysh al-Islam, which resulted in one of the shells exploding in the main building of the diplomatic mission. Fortunately, there was nobody there in the room destroyed by the explosion. Immediately after the attack the State Department swiftly condemned this act of terrorism. But we all are well aware of the fact that the "southern front" operating in the suburbs of the Syrian capital is controlled by Jordan with a certain amount of US assistance, unlike the "northern front" guided by Turkey and Saudi Arabia. The shelling of the Russian embassy - is clearly a signal to Russia that it should abandon its support of the Syrian regime.
The White House continues to exploit the Iranian theme to dissuade Moscow supplying the Islamic Republic with S-300 air defense systems. But America didn't even try to propose a fair exchange. Yet, Washington think tanks are well of aware of the fact that Moscow will no longer buy any of America's fraudulent tricks, as happened a few years ago with the introduction of sanctions against Iran and the freezing of the contract to supply the S-300s. The US goal is clear and simple - to sow doubts in Tehran about the principal position of Russia on Iran, thus pushing Iranians to unnecessary concessions in discussions on the Iranian nuclear program.
Another old trick has been the alleged desire of the GCC countries, including Saudi Arabia, to launch a full-scale cooperation with Russia, particularly in the coordination of global oil prices. The emissaries of the Arabian monarchies one by one have been visiting the Russian capital with handfuls of promises. Naturally, none of those were planned to be implemented, as they are designed to lure Russia's leadership into a trap. But this lesson has already been learned as well, especially in the times when the former Emir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani and Saudi Prince Bandar were eager to promise billions of dollars of investment in the Russian economy, the purchase of Russian weapons, and lucrative contracts, yet no concrete steps followed.
Now a new player is being used - Turkey, which seems to be seriously offended by Russia's position on the Armenian Genocide. Turkey, for which the question of recognition or non-recognition of the genocide is the most painful of all, instantly responded to the fact that on 24 April, Vladimir Putin visited the Tsitsernakaberd Memorial, built in memory of the genocide victims of 1915. Turkish officials said that there could be no justification for this visit, three days later, Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan "remembered" events regarding the Crimea. The Turkish leader said that Russia should account for their actions in Crimea and Ukraine before condemning the massacre of Armenians by the Ottomans in 1915.
Washington was eager to request even more anti-Russian statements from Turkey, including those relating to the Crimea, that followed one after the other. Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, said that the recent unofficial Turkish delegation that was visiting the Crimea, found signs of human rights violations. Such an assessment on the situation on the ground from Cavusoglu looks rather strange, since they contradict statements made by members of the delegation themselves. On April 29 the head of the unofficial delegation Mehmet Uskyul said that he is satisfied with the treatment of Crimean Tatars on the peninsula. Even more dramatic statements were made by Turkey's Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu on May 14 at a meeting of NATO Foreign Ministers. According to this Turkish official "The illegal annexation of the Crimea can not be tolerated". The Turkish prime minister also urged NATO states to support Ukraine so it could better ensure the security of its own people. Ahmet Davutoğlu went as far as stressing that NATO states should not forget about the suffering of the people of the Crimea...
Ankara canceled a regular meeting of the Russian-Turkish Cooperation Council and the arrival of Sergey Lavrov to Antalya that was scheduled on May 16. Formally - under the pretext of difficulties caused by the forthcoming parliamentary elections, after which a new government will be formed. But all that buzz can negatively affect a project of fundamental importance for Russia - the "Turkish Stream", which couldn't make the United States any more happier.
Another front of this anti-Russian campaign was opened in Macedonia. The United States is actively advancing a possible regime change in Skopje to counter Russian influence. It's also important to note that the "Turkish Stream" would stretch across Macedonian soil. That's what Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said last week about those events: "Objectively speaking, the events in Macedonia are unfolding against the background of the government's refusal to join the policy of sanctions against Russia and the vigorous support Skopje gave to the Turkish Stream gas pipeline project, to which many people oppose, both in Brussels and across the ocean. So we can't help but feeling that there is some sort of connection here."
In fact, Washington has tried to stage a "color revolution" by organizing mass demonstrations launched by the local opposition. Even the country's Albanian minority, which has nothing in common with Macedonian opposition came out to the streets to support rallies in the capital, Skopje. For Moscow this looks all too familiar. Events are moving in the same direction as they were in Ukraine in 2013 and 2014, when the corrupt regime of Viktor Yanukovych was ousted during mass demonstrations organized by the United States and Poland.
So the latest maneuvers of American diplomacy - is nothing but a smokescreen designed to hide the true intentions of the Obama administration. Washington's strategic goal remains the same - to weaken Russia by all means necessary and break it apart from those countries which are engaged in cooperation with Moscow. Therefore there's no trusting US promises or even reaching deals with them. All this smooth-talking is a mere trap in the hope that Russian pro-Western liberals might convince President Putin that the White House is sincere. But US think tanks have missed one thing - "Ukrainian lessons" have not been lost on the Kremlin.
Peter Lvov, Ph.D in political science, exclusively for the online magazine "New Eastern Outlook"
Legal | Automatic: An Auto Accessory to Make You a Smarter Driver
Sun, 24 May 2015 02:22
Updated: May 13, 2013
1. Acceptance of Terms1.1 Automatic Labs, Inc. (''Automatic'') provides its Hardware and Service (each as defined below) to you through its mobile applications, its website located at https://www.automatic.com (the ''Site'') and via other channels, subject to this Terms of Service agreement (''TOS''). By accepting this TOS or by accessing or using the Service or Site, you acknowledge that you have read, understood, and agree to be bound by this TOS. If you do not agree with this TOS, you must not accept this TOS and may not use the Service.
1.2 We reserve the right, at our sole discretion, to change or modify portions of this TOS at any time. If we do this, we will post the changes on this page and will indicate at the top of this page the date these terms were last revised. We will also notify you, whether through the Services user interface, in an email notification, or through other reasonable means. Any such changes will become effective no earlier than fourteen (14) days after they are posted, except that changes addressing new functions of the Services or changes made for legal reasons will be effective immediately. Your continued use of the Services or Hardware after the date any such changes become effective constitutes your acceptance of the new TOS.
2 Description of ServiceThe ''Service'' includes (a) the Site, (b) Automatic's vehicle information and related services, and (c) all mobile applications and other software (including the Software, as defined below), data, reports, text, images, sounds, video, and content made available through any of the foregoing (collectively referred to as the ''Content''). The ''Hardware'' means Automatic's device that may be connected to your vehicle in connection with the Service (for information, please read our limited Hardware warranty. Any updates or new features added to or augmenting the Service or the Hardware are also subject to this TOS; to keep the Software up-to-date, you agree that we may automatically provide you with such updates without your further consent or notice to you. NOTE THAT IN ORDER FOR THE SERVICE TO FUNCTION (INCLUDING EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION SERVICES), THE MOBILE DEVICE ONTO WHICH THE AUTOMATIC APPLICATION IS INSTALLED MUST BE LOCATED IN THE VEHICLE ASSOCIATED WITH YOUR SERVICE AND THE HARDWARE MUST BE PROPERLY INSTALLED IN YOUR VEHICLE. THE MOBILE DEVICE MUST ALSO HAVE ADEQUATE NETWORK AND DATA SERVICE IN THE LOCATION WHERE NEEDED.
3. General Conditions / Access and Use of the Service and Hardware3.1 Subject to the terms and conditions of this TOS, you may access and use the Service and Hardware only for lawful purposes. You shall not use our Services or Hardware (and we will not be liable for your use of the Services and Hardware) in connection with (i) cars with modified engine or electronic control systems, or (ii) cars of any make, model or year that we do not support, as set forth on our website. All rights, title and interest in and to the Service, the Hardware and their components will remain with and belong exclusively to Automatic. You shall not: (a) sublicense, resell, rent, lease, transfer, assign, time-share or otherwise commercially exploit or make the Service available to any third party; (b) use the Service or the Hardware in any unlawful manner (including, without limitation, in violation of any data, privacy or export control laws) or in any manner that interferes with or disrupts the integrity or performance of the Service, the Hardware or their components, (c) modify, adapt or hack the Service or the Hardware to, or otherwise attempt to, gain unauthorized access to the Service, the Hardware or their related systems or networks, or (d) use the Service or Hardware to obtain or attempt to access any materials or information through any means not intentionally made available or provided for through the Service or Hardware. You shall comply with any codes of conduct, policies or other notices Automatic provides you or publishes in connection with the Service and the Hardware, and you shall promptly notify Automatic if you learn of a security breach related to the Service.
3.2 Any software that may be made available by Automatic in connection with the Service, such as Automatic's mobile applications and any software embedded on the Hardware (''Software'') contains proprietary and confidential information that is protected by applicable intellectual property and other laws. Subject to the terms and conditions of this TOS, Automatic hereby grants you a personal, non-transferable, non-sublicensable and non-exclusive right and license to use the object code of any Software solely in connection with the Service (and in the case of Software embedded on the Hardware, you may only use such Software on the Hardware), provided that you shall not (and shall not allow any third party to) copy, modify, create a derivative work of, reverse engineer, reverse assemble or otherwise attempt to discover any source code, or sell, assign, sublicense or otherwise transfer any right in any Software. You agree not to access the Service by any means other than through the interface that is provided by Automatic for use in accessing the Service. The AUTOMATIC name and logos are trademarks and service marks of Automatic (collectively the ''Automatic Trademarks''). Other company, product, and service names and logos used and displayed via the Services may be trademarks or service marks of their respective owners who may or may not endorse or be affiliated with or connected to us. Nothing in this TOS or the Services should be construed as granting, by implication, estoppel, or otherwise, any license or right to use any of the Automatic Trademarks displayed on the Services, without our prior written permission in each instance. All goodwill generated from the use of Automatic Trademarks will inure to our exclusive benefit. Any rights not expressly granted herein by Automatic are reserved and no license or right to use any trademark of Automatic or any third party is granted to you in connection with the Service or Hardware. Software, Hardware and the transmission of applicable data, if any, is subject to United States export controls. No Hardware or Software may be downloaded from the Service or otherwise exported or re-exported in violation of U.S. export laws. Downloading or using the Software is at your sole risk. Recognizing the global nature of the Internet, you agree to comply with all local rules and laws regarding your use of the Service and Hardware.
3.3 You are solely responsible for all data, information, feedback, suggestions, text, content and other materials that you upload, post, deliver, provide or otherwise transmit or store (hereafter ''post(ing)'') in connection with or relating to the Service or the Hardware (''Your Content''). You are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of your login, password and account and for all activities that occur under your login or account. Automatic reserves the right to access your account in order to respond to your requests for technical support. By posting Your Content on or through the Service, you hereby do and shall grant Automatic a worldwide, non-exclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, fully paid, sublicensable and transferable license to use, modify, reproduce, distribute, display, publish and perform Your Content in connection with the Service. Automatic has the right, but not the obligation, to monitor the Service, Hardware, Content or Your Content. You further agree that Automatic may remove or disable any Content at any time for any reason (including, but not limited to, upon receipt of claims or allegations from third parties or authorities relating to such Content), or for no reason at all. For more information about our use of the data collected by the Hardware and Services, please see our Privacy Policy ( https://www.automatic.com/legal#privacy ).
3.4 Automatic uses reasonable security measures to protect the data we receive via the Services and Hardware. However, we cannot guarantee that third parties will never defeat our security measures. You acknowledge that you are using the Services and Hardware and sharing information at your own risk.
3.5 The Service includes certain services that are available via a mobile device, including (i) the ability to upload data to the Service via a mobile device, (ii) the ability to browse the Service and the Site from a mobile device and (iii) the ability to access certain features through an application downloaded and installed on a mobile device (collectively, the ''Mobile Services''). To the extent you access the Service through a mobile device, your wireless service carrier's standard charges, data rates and other fees may apply. In addition, downloading, installing, or using certain Mobile Services may be prohibited or restricted by your carrier, and not all Mobile Services may work with all carriers or devices. By using the Mobile Services, you agree that we may communicate with you regarding Automatic and other entities by SMS, MMS, text message or other electronic means to your mobile device for the purpose of providing the applicable service and that certain information about your usage of the Mobile Services may be communicated to us. In the event you change or deactivate your mobile telephone number, you agree to promptly update your Automatic account information to ensure that your messages are not sent to the person that acquires your old number. In the event that you fail to comply with the obligation to promptly update your Automatic account information when changing or deactivating your mobile telephone number, you accept full responsibility for any of your messages which may not be delivered or may be sent to the person that acquires your old number.
3.6 Unless otherwise expressly authorized herein or in the Service, you agree not to display, distribute, license, perform, publish, reproduce, duplicate, copy, create derivative works from, modify, sell, resell, exploit, transfer or upload for any commercial purposes, any portion of the Service, use of the Service, or access to the Service. The Service is for your personal use.
3.7 The failure of Automatic to exercise or enforce any right or provision of this TOS shall not be a waiver of that right. You acknowledge that this TOS is a contract between you and Automatic, even though it is electronic and is not physically signed by you and Automatic, and it governs your use of the Service and Hardware and takes the place of any prior agreements between you and Automatic related to the subject matter hereof.
4. Apple-Enabled Software Applications.Automatic offers Software applications that are intended to be operated in connection with products made commercially available by Apple Inc. (''Apple''), among other platforms. With respect to Software that is made available for your use in connection with an Apple-branded product (such Software, ''Apple-Enabled Software''), in addition to the other terms and conditions set forth in these TOS, the following terms and conditions apply:
4.1 Automatic and you acknowledge that this TOS is concluded between Automatic and you only, and not with Apple, and that as between Automatic and Apple, Automatic, not Apple, is solely responsible for the Apple-Enabled Software and the content thereof.
4.2 You may not use the Apple-Enabled Software in any manner that is in violation of or inconsistent with the Usage Rules set forth for Apple-Enabled Software in, or otherwise be in conflict with, the App Store Terms of Service.
4.3 Your license to use the Apple-Enabled Software is limited to a non-transferable license to use the Apple-Enabled Software on an iOS Product that you own or control, as permitted by the Usage Rules set forth in the App Store Terms of Service.
4.4 Apple has no obligation whatsoever to provide any maintenance or support services with respect to the Apple-Enabled Software.
4.5 Apple is not responsible for any product warranties, whether express or implied by law. In the event of any failure of the Apple-Enabled Software to conform to any applicable warranty, you may notify Apple, and Apple will refund the purchase price for the Apple-Enabled Software to you, if any; and, to the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, Apple will have no other warranty obligation whatsoever with respect to the Apple-Enabled Software, or any other claims, losses, liabilities, damages, costs or expenses attributable to any failure to conform to any warranty, which will be Automatic's sole responsibility, to the extent it cannot be disclaimed under applicable law.
4.6 Automatic and you acknowledge that Automatic, not Apple, is responsible for addressing any claims of you or any third party relating to the Apple-Enabled Software or your possession and/or use of that Apple-Enabled Software, including, but not limited to: (i) product liability claims; (ii) any claim that the Apple-Enabled Software fails to conform to any applicable legal or regulatory requirement; and (iii) claims arising under consumer protection or similar legislation.
4.7 In the event of any third party claim that the Apple-Enabled Software or the end-user's possession and use of that Apple-Enabled Software infringes that third party's intellectual property rights, as between Automatic and Apple, Automatic, not Apple, will be solely responsible for the investigation, defense, settlement and discharge of any such intellectual property infringement claim.
4.8 You represent and warrant that (i) you are not located in a country that is subject to a U.S. Government embargo, or that has been designated by the U.S. Government as a ''terrorist supporting'' country; and (ii) you are not listed on any U.S. Government list of prohibited or restricted parties.
4.9 If you have any questions, complaints or claims with respect to the Apple-Enabled Software, they should be directed to Automatic as follows:
support@automatic.comAutomatic Labs, Inc.575 Florida St.Suite 100San Francisco, CA 94110
4.10 Automatic and you acknowledge and agree that Apple, and Apple's subsidiaries, are third-party beneficiaries of this TOS with respect to the Apple-Enabled Software, and that, upon your acceptance of the terms and conditions of this TOS, Apple will have the right (and will be deemed to have accepted the right) to enforce this TOS against you with respect to the Apple-Enabled Software as a third-party beneficiary thereof.
5. PaymentTo the extent the Service, Hardware or any portion thereof is made available for any fee, you will be required to select a payment plan or make a payment and provide Automatic information regarding your credit card or other payment instrument. You represent and warrant to Automatic that such information is true and that you are authorized to use the payment instrument. You will promptly update your account information with any changes (for example, a change in your billing address or credit card expiration date) that may occur. You agree to pay Automatic the amount that is specified in the payment plan in accordance with the terms of such plan and this TOS. If your payment plan involves subscription payments, you hereby authorize Automatic to bill your payment instrument in advance on a periodic basis in accordance with the terms of the applicable payment plan until you terminate your account, and you further agree to pay any charges so incurred. If you dispute any charges you must let Automatic know within sixty (60) days after the date that Automatic charges you. We reserve the right to change Automatic's prices. If Automatic does change prices, Automatic will provide you with notice of the change on the Site or in email to you, at Automatic's option, at least 30 days before the change is to take effect. Your continued use of the Service after the price change becomes effective constitutes your agreement to pay the changed amount. Note that you (and not Automatic) are responsible for any charges or fees payable to third parties in connection with the Service, such as emergency responders.
6. Representations and WarrantiesYou represent and warrant to Automatic that: (i) you have full power and authority to enter into this TOS; (ii) you own all Your Content or have obtained all permissions, releases, rights or licenses required to engage in your data collection using the Hardware, posting and other activities (and allow Automatic to perform its obligations) in connection with the Service and Hardware without obtaining any further releases or consents; (iii) Your Content and other activities in connection with the Service, and Automatic's exercise of all rights and license granted by you herein, do not and will not violate, infringe, or misappropriate any third party's copyright, trademark, right of privacy or publicity, or other personal or proprietary right, nor does Your Content contain any matter that is defamatory, obscene, unlawful, threatening, abusive, tortious, offensive or harassing; and (iv) you are eighteen (18) years of age or older.
7. TerminationYou have the right to terminate your account at any time in accordance with the procedures set forth on the Site. Automatic reserves the right to (i) modify or discontinue, temporarily or permanently, the Service or Hardware (or any part thereof) and (ii) refuse any and all current and future use of the Service, suspend or terminate your account (or any part thereof) or use of the Service and remove and discard any of Your Content in the Service, for any reason, including if Automatic believes that you have violated this TOS. Automatic shall not be liable to you or any third party for any modification, suspension or discontinuation of the Service or Hardware. Automatic will use good faith efforts to contact you to warn you prior to suspension or termination of your account by Automatic. All of Your Content on the Service (if any) may be permanently deleted by Automatic upon any termination of your account in its sole discretion. If Automatic terminates your account without cause and you have signed up for a fee-bearing service, Automatic will refund the pro-rated, unearned portion of any amount that you have prepaid to Automatic for such Service. However, all accrued rights to payment and the terms of Section 5-14 shall survive termination of this TOS.
8. DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTIESTHE HARDWARE COMES WITH A LIMITED WARRANTY FOR MORE DETAILS. THE SERVICE, INCLUDING THE SITE, CONTENT AND ANY DATA OR OTHER INFORMATION PROVIDED BY THE HARDWARE, SOFTWARE OR SERVICE, AND ALL SERVER AND NETWORK COMPONENTS ARE PROVIDED ON AN ''AS IS'' AND ''AS AVAILABLE'' BASIS WITHOUT ANY WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND, AND AUTOMATIC EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ANY AND ALL WARRANTIES, WHETHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, TITLE, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, NON-INFRINGEMENT, QUALITY, ACCURACY, TIMELINESS, COMPLETENESS, CORRECTNESS OR RELIABILITY. AUTOMATIC MAKES NO WARRANTY THAT (I) THE SERVICE OR HARDWARE WILL MEET YOUR REQUIREMENTS, (II) THE SERVICE OR HARDWARE WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED, TIMELY, SECURE, VIRUS-FREE OR ERROR-FREE, (III) THE RESULTS (SUCH AS VEHICLE ERROR CODE ANALYSIS) THAT MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE USE OF THE SERVICE OR HARDWARE WILL BE ACCURATE OR RELIABLE, OR (IV) THE QUALITY OF ANY SERVICES, INFORMATION, OR OTHER MATERIAL PURCHASED OR OBTAINED BY YOU THROUGH THE SERVICE WILL MEET YOUR EXPECTATIONS. NO INFORMATION, ADVICE OR SERVICES OBTAINED BY YOU FROM AUTOMATIC OR THROUGH THE SERVICE SHALL CREATE ANY WARRANTY NOT EXPRESSLY STATED IN THIS TOS. IN PARTICULAR, ALTHOUGH AUTOMATIC ENDEAVORS TO ENSURE SUCCESSFUL DETECTION OF MOST CRASHES, NOT ALL CRASHES MAY BE DETECTED AND AUTOMATIC DOES NOT GUARANTEE THAT THE SERVICE OR HARDWARE WILL DETECT AND/OR REPORT ALL VEHICLE CRASHES OR THAT EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE WILL BE PROVIDED IN THE EVENT OF ANY CRASH. AUTOMATIC IS NOT LIABLE FOR THE ACTIONS OR INACTIONS OF THE USER, OR OF ANY EMERGENCY RESPONDERS OR OTHER SERVICE PROVIDERS WE MAY CONTACT ON YOUR BEHALF, OR FOR THE SERVICE'S INABILITY TO CONTACT ANY EMERGENCY RESPONDER OR OTHER SERVICE PROVIDER IN ANY PARTICULAR SITUATION. FURTHER, THE SERVICE DOES NOT GUARANTEE THAT USE OF THE HARDWARE, SOFTWARE OR SERVICES WILL RESULT IN ANY GAS SAVINGS OR EFFICIENCIES OR THAT VEHICLE ERROR DETECTION WILL BE ACCURATE OR ERROR-FREE. YOU ARE SOLELY RESPONSIBLE FOR SAFE VEHICLE OPERATION AND PROPER VEHICLE MAINTENANCE AND YOU SHOULD ALWAYS OBTAIN PROFESSIONAL ASSISTANCE FROM A VEHICLE SPECIALIST FOR DIAGNOSIS AND REPAIR OF ANY ERRORS OR OTHER PROBLEMS WITH YOUR VEHICLE. THE SERVICE AND THE HARDWARE DO NOT WORK OUTSIDE OF THE U.S.
9. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY.9.1 UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES AND UNDER NO LEGAL THEORY (WHETHER IN CONTRACT, TORT, OR OTHERWISE) SHALL AUTOMATIC BE LIABLE TO YOU OR ANY THIRD PARTY FOR (A) ANY INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, CONSEQUENTIAL OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES, INCLUDING LOST PROFITS, LOST SALES OR BUSINESS, LOST DATA OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION, (B) ANY INJURIES TO PERSONS OR DAMAGE TO PROPERTY RELATED TO YOUR USE OF THE SERVICE OR HARDWARE, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO INJURIES TO PERSONS OR PROPERTY RELATED TO USE OF EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION SERVICES OR ANY DAMAGES RELATING TO THE INSTALLATION, REPAIR, OR MAINTENANCE OF THE HARDWARE, OR (C) ANY DIRECT DAMAGES, COSTS, LOSSES OR LIABILITIES IN EXCESS OF THE SERVICE FEES ACTUALLY PAID BY YOU IN THE SIX (6) MONTHS PRECEDING THE EVENT GIVING RISE TO YOUR CLAIM OR, IF NO SERVICE FEES APPLY, ONE HUNDRED ($100) U.S. DOLLARS. THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION ALLOCATE THE RISKS UNDER THIS TOS BETWEEN THE PARTIES, AND THE PARTIES HAVE RELIED ON THESE LIMITATIONS IN DETERMINING WHETHER TO ENTER INTO THIS TOS.
9.2 SOME STATES DO NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OF IMPLIED WARRANTIES OR LIMITATION OF LIABILITY FOR INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, WHICH MEANS THAT SOME OF THE ABOVE LIMITATIONS MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU. IN THESE STATES, AUTOMATIC'S LIABILITY WILL BE LIMITED TO THE GREATEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW.
10. IndemnificationYou shall defend, indemnify, and hold harmless Automatic from and against any claims, actions or demands, including without limitation reasonable legal and accounting fees, arising or resulting from your breach of this TOS, any of Your Content, or your other access, contribution to, use or misuse of the Service or Hardware. Automatic shall provide notice to you of any such claim, suit or demand. Automatic reserves the right to assume the exclusive defense and control of any matter which is subject to indemnification under this section. In such case, you agree to cooperate with any reasonable requests assisting Automatic's defense of such matter.
11. AssignmentYou may not assign this TOS without the prior written consent of Automatic, but Automatic may assign or transfer this TOS, in whole or in part, without restriction.
12. Governing LawThis TOS shall be governed by the laws of the State of California without regard to the principles of conflicts of law. Unless otherwise elected by Automatic in a particular instance, you hereby expressly agree to submit to the exclusive personal jurisdiction of the federal and state courts of the State of California for the purpose of resolving any dispute relating to your access to or use of the Service or Hardware.
13. Dispute Resolution By Binding ArbitrationPLEASE READ THIS SECTION CAREFULLY AS IT AFFECTS YOUR RIGHTS. Most customer concerns can be resolved quickly and to the customer's satisfaction by emailing customer support at support@automatic.com. In the unlikely event that our customer care team is unable to resolve a complaint you may have (or if Automatic has not been able to resolve a dispute it has with you after attempting to do so informally), we each agree to resolve those disputes through binding arbitration, mediation, or small claims court instead of in courts of general jurisdiction. Arbitration, which is often cheaper, faster and less formal than a lawsuit in court, uses a neutral arbitrator instead of a judge or jury. Arbitrators can award the same damages and relief that a court can award. Also, in any arbitration under this arbitration provision in which you seek less than $75,000 in damages, Automatic will pay reasonable attorneys' fees should you prevail. Automatic will not seek attorneys' fees from you. However, if you initiate an arbitration in which you seek more than $75,000 in damages, the payment of attorneys' fees will be governed by the AAA Rules (as defined below). Any arbitration under this Agreement will take place on an individual basis; class arbitrations and class actions are not permitted.
13.1 Arbitration Agreement: Automatic and you agree to arbitrate all disputes and claims between us. This agreement to arbitrate is intended to be broadly interpreted. It includes, but is not limited to:
claims arising out of or relating to any aspect of the relationship between us, whether based in contract, tort, statute, fraud, misrepresentation or any other legal theory;claims that arose before this or any prior agreement (including, but not limited to, claims relating to advertising);claims that are currently the subject of purported class action litigation in which you are not a member of a certified class; andclaims that may arise after the termination of this TOS.References to "Automatic", "you", and "us" include our respective subsidiaries, affiliates, agents, employees, predecessors in interest, successors, and assigns, as well as all authorized or unauthorized users or beneficiaries of services or devices under this or prior agreements between us. Notwithstanding the foregoing, either party may bring an individual action in small claims court. This arbitration agreement does not preclude you from bringing issues to the attention of federal, state or local agencies, including, for example, the Federal Communications Commission. Such agencies can, if the law allows, seek relief against us on your behalf. You agree that, by entering into this TOS, you and Automatic are each waiving the right to a trial by jury or to participate in a class action. This TOS evidences a transaction in interstate commerce, and thus the Federal Arbitration Act governs the interpretation and enforcement of this provision. This arbitration provision shall survive termination of this TOS.
A party who intends to seek arbitration must first send to the other, by certified mail, a written Notice of Dispute ("Notice"). The Notice to Automatic should be sent to the address located in the ''Contract Us'' portion of our website ("Notice Address"). The Notice must: (a) describe the nature and basis of the claim or dispute; and (b) set forth the specific relief sought ("Demand"). If Automatic and you do not reach an agreement to resolve the claim within sixty (60) calendar days after the Notice is received, you or Automatic may commence an arbitration proceeding. During the arbitration, the amount of any settlement offer made by Automatic or you shall not be disclosed to the arbitrator until after the arbitrator determines the amount, if any, to which you or Automatic is entitled.
The arbitration will be governed by the Commercial Arbitration Rules and the Supplementary Procedures for Consumer Related Disputes (collectively, "AAA Rules") of the American Arbitration Association (''AAA''), as modified by this TOS, and will be administered by the AAA. The AAA Rules are available online at adr.org, by calling the AAA at 1-800-778-7879, or by writing to the Notice Address. The arbitrator is bound by the terms of this TOS. All issues are for the arbitrator to decide, including, but not limited to, issues relating to the scope, enforceability, and arbitrability of the arbitration provision. Unless Automatic and you agree otherwise, any arbitration hearings will take place in a reasonably convenient location for both parties with due consideration of their ability to travel and other pertinent circumstances. If the parties are unable to agree on a location, the determination shall be made by AAA. If your claim is for $10,000 or less, we agree that you may choose whether the arbitration will be conducted solely on the basis of documents submitted to the arbitrator, through a telephonic hearing, or by an in-person hearing as established by the AAA Rules. If your claim exceeds $10,000, the right to a hearing will be determined by the AAA Rules. Regardless of the manner in which the arbitration is conducted, the arbitrator shall issue a reasoned written decision sufficient to explain the essential findings and conclusions on which the award is based. Automatic will pay all AAA filing, administration, and arbitrator fees for any arbitration initiated in accordance with the AAA Rules. However, if you initiate an arbitration in which you seek more than $75,000 in damages, the payment of these fees will be governed by the AAA rules.
The arbitrator may make rulings and resolve disputes as to the payment and reimbursement of fees and expenses at any time during the proceeding and upon request from either party made within 14 days of the arbitrator's ruling on the merits.
The arbitrator may award declaratory or injunctive relief only in favor of the individual party seeking relief and only to the extent necessary to provide relief warranted by that party's individual claim. YOU AND AUTOMATIC AGREE THAT EACH MAY BRING CLAIMS AGAINST THE OTHER ONLY IN YOUR OR ITS INDIVIDUAL CAPACITY, AND NOT AS A PLAINTIFF OR CLASS MEMBER IN ANY PURPORTED CLASS OR REPRESENTATIVE PROCEEDING. Further, unless both you and Automatic agree in writing otherwise, the arbitrator may not consolidate more than one person's claims, and may not otherwise preside over any form of a representative or class proceeding. If this specific provision is found to be unenforceable, then the entirety of this arbitration provision shall be null and void.
13.2 Notwithstanding any provision in this TOS to the contrary, we agree that if Automatic makes any future change to this arbitration provision (other than a change to the Notice Address) while you are a user of the Service or Hardware, you may reject any such change by sending us written notice within thirty (30) calendar days of the change to the Arbitration Notice Address provided above. By rejecting any future change, you are agreeing that you will arbitrate any dispute between us in accordance with the language of this provision.
14. PrivacyPlease read the Privacy Policy to understand how Automatic collects and uses personal information. By using the Service or the Hardware, you consent to our collection and use of personal data as outlined therein.
15. Notice for California UsersUnder California Civil Code Section 1789.3, users of the Hardware from California are entitled to the following specific consumer rights notice: The Complaint Assistance Unit of the Division of Consumer Services of the California Department of Consumer Affairs may be contacted in writing at 1625 North Market Blvd., Suite N 112, Sacramento, CA 95834, or by telephone at (916) 445-1254 or (800) 952-5210. You may contact us at Automatic Labs, Inc., 575 Florida St., Suite 100, San Francisco, CA 94110.
16. Questions? Concerns? Suggestions?Please contact us at support@automatic.com to report any violations of this TOS or to pose any questions regarding this TOS, the Service, or the Hardware.
Dutch immigrant kids take to street demanding 'white' classmates - Yahoo News
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Sun, 24 May 2015 02:14
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Proposal would change Ontario Human Rights Code to prevent genetic discrimination | Toronto Star
Sun, 24 May 2015 02:02
Physicians and patient advocacy groups are supporting a proposed change to the Ontario Human Rights Code to protect people's genetic information from being used by insurance companies and employers.
The Coalition for Genetic Fairness says some people are already being denied insurance because they have a genetic predisposition for a particular disease.
Bev Heim-Myers of the Huntington Society, one of 15 patient groups in the coalition, says insurance companies can't ask for a genetic test simply because you check a box admitting to a family history of a disease or illness.
But she says they will deny coverage based on your family history if you refuse to get a genetic test, and failing to disclose what you know would also void your policy.
Dr. Ronald Cohn, who runs a DNA research lab at Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children, says many parents are afraid have their child tested or participate in clinical trials because of a fear of genetic discrimination.
Liberal backbencher Michael Colle introduced legislation to prohibit discrimination by insurance companies and employers on the basis of what he calls ''genetic characteristics.''
The ''Sach-ing'' of America - Capitalism Magazine
Sun, 24 May 2015 02:01
There was the sack of Rome by Alaric and his Visigoths in 410 A.D. There was the sack of Rome by Charles I, Holy Roman Emperor, in 1527. That pillage only ended when, after eight months, the food ran out, there was no one important left to hold hostage for ransom, and then a plague appeared caused by all the rotting corpses in Rome's streets. When the destruction, rape, and looting stopped, only 10,000 residents were left in Rome.
Attila the Hun never sacked Rome, but did loot and destroy a great portion of northern Italy. It wasn't for lack of trying to invest Rome. But his hordes contracted ''camp disease'' and fell too ill to pillage and loot. He had to withdraw his ''freedom fighters'' to try another day, but died about a year later before making another attempt, in 453 A.D.
It's a scenario being acted out in the Middle East by ISIS. Until he was reportedly killed by U.S. Special Forces, ISIS commander Abu Sayyaf was aiming for the Pol Pot Mass Murder award that was to have been conferred on him by the Swedish Academy of Peace and Harmony. He was also going to be presented with a check for $10 million, an interest-bearing, untaxable bank account with Nordea Bank, and a certificate of indulgence and indemnity to rape every blonde, blue-eyed Swedish woman he set eyes on in Stockholm, and take one back to the Islamic State as a prize to add to his collection of sex slaves.
It would take a village '' or, at least, the ''global'' one '' to subjugate and sack America. That is what is being proposed by Jeffrey Sachs. And who is Jeffrey Sachs?
Jeffrey D. Sachs is a world-renowned professor of economics, leader in sustainable development, senior UN advisor, bestselling author, and syndicated columnist whose monthly newspaper columns appear in more than 100 countries. He has twice been named among Time Magazine's 100 most influential world leaders. He was called by the New York Times, ''probably the most important economist in the world,'' and by Time Magazine ''the world's best known economist.'' A recent survey by The Economist Magazine ranked Professor Sachs as among the world's three most influential living economists of the past decade.
Professor Sachs serves as the Director of The Earth Institute, Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development, and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University. He is Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on the Millennium Development Goals, having held the same position under former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. He is Director of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. He is co-founder and Chief Strategist of Millennium Promise Alliance, and is director of the Millennium Villages Project. Sachs is also one of the Secretary-General's MDG Advocates, and a Commissioner of the ITU/UNESCO Broadband Commission for Development. He has authored three New York Times bestsellers in the past seven years: The End of Poverty (2005), Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet (2008), and The Price of Civilization (2011). His most recent books are To Move the World: JFK's Quest for Peace (2013) and The Age of Sustainable Development (2015).
That, in a nutshell, is who Jeffrey Sachs is. A career elitist and people director, whose middle name seems to be ''sustainable.'' A starry-eyed busybody who'd love to manage your body and habits so that the earth survives your carbon footprint. Time Magazine said (twice) he was one of the world's most influential leaders. The New York Times said he was ''probably the most important economist in the world.'' I wonder what Times columnist and ''economist'' Thomas Friedman thinks about that accolade. Sachs has the usual chestful of politically correct medals and ribbons that identify him as a ''world leader,'' probably many more than were pinned to Al Gore's tuxedo.
But, until Cliff Kincaid wrote about Jeffrey Sachs in a May 18th column in Accuracy in Media (AIM), ''Liberal Academic Says America's Founding Document Outmoded,'' I'd never heard of this ''world leader'' and ''eminent person.''
Kincaid wrote:
Top Vatican adviser Jeffrey Sachs says that when Pope Francis visits the United States in September, he will directly challenge the ''American idea'' of God-given rights embodied in the Declaration of Independence.
Sachs, a special advisor to the United Nations and director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, is a media superstar who can always be counted on to pontificate endlessly on such topics as income inequality and global health. This time, writing in a Catholic publication, he may have gone off his rocker, revealing the real global game plan.
Which Catholic publication? It was a Jesuit one, ''America.''
The United States, Sachs writes in the Jesuit publication, America, is ''a society in thrall'' to the idea of unalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. But the ''urgent core of Francis' message'' will be to challenge this ''American idea'' by ''proclaiming that the path to happiness lies not solely or mainly through the defense of rights but through the exercise of virtues, most notably justice and charity.''
In these extraordinary comments, which constitute a frontal assault on the American idea of freedom and national sovereignty, Sachs has made it clear that he hopes to enlist the Vatican in a global campaign to increase the power of global or foreign-dominated organizations and movements.
This is not really news. Pope Francis has pontificated often enough on how capitalism and the pursuit of material wealth are major failings of mankind and obstacles to man's spiritual redemption. The liberty to own property can result in an individual's happiness, and Francis has strenuously objected to that. But, it does come as a minor surprise that Sachs would enlist the Vatican to shill for his dreams of ''justice'' (read ''social justice,'' a Progressive end) and ''charity'' (read compulsory charity).
On second thought, it shouldn't be a surprise. The full title of Sachs' America article is ''A Call to Virtue: Living the Gospel in the land of liberty.''
Sachs and Francis are of the same species of vulture. With, of course, the United Nations. Jeffrey Sachs, being such an influential gadabout and gauleiter for the environmentalist cause, will always find employment in the realm of global collectivism. Here is what the U.N. had to say in August, 2014:
The Sustainable Development Solutions Network will work with stakeholders including business, civil society, UN agencies, and other international organizations to identify and share the best pathways to achieve sustainable development'...
Naturally, eager government wonks will determine what is and isn't ''sustainable.''
'...The Solutions Network will be directed by Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs,'...and will operate in close coordination with the High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda announced by the UN last week.
If you, doubtlessly not an ''eminent person,'' and can stomach it, you can read the whole U.N. plan here.
Kincaid's article links to Sachs' article in America. One Sustainable Development ''solution'' would be to tax fuel and other energy producing modes to pay for achieving a ''sustainable'' planet in another generation. Of course, the U.S. would pay the lion's share of such a ''global'' impost.
Most important, they [the American revolutionaries] believed that they would find happiness as individuals, each endowed by the creator with individual rights. There is, no doubt, grandeur in this idea. As children of God, individuals have rights to be free of persecution, to be treated as ends and not means, as Immanuel Kant put it. The dignity of man requires the rights of man, as Thomas Paine declared.
Yet from the point of view of the Gospels, such rights are only part of the story, only one facet of our humanity. The Beatitudes, regarded by Pope Francis as key to the Gospel truth, are actually not at all about individual rights but about virtues, meaning the right path to the right kind of life. The Sermon on the Mount is not a defense of the individual but a call to humility, love and justice.
In modern terms, we would say that rights must be balanced by responsibilities. Kant said that the rights of individuals must be combined with duties, as guided by the categorical imperative. According to Kant, we have the duty to behave according to those maxims, and only those maxims, which can be made into universal laws.
Wouldn't you know it? The original Prussian goose-stepper, Immanuel Kant, pops up into view from behind the curtain like the Wizard of Oz. Sachs goes on in his article:
Pope Francis is telling the world, and the world is listening, that the path from indifference to the suffering of others can be found through the reinvigoration of the Gospel virtues. This, I believe, is a compelling message, though one that is very strange indeed to the modern, and especially American, psyche. Americans might rather expect a call to legal responsibilities'--''You must pay your taxes'''--than a call to virtues. Yes, they will tend to dismiss such claims of social responsibility (''It's my right to keep my money, since I earned it''), but at least they are familiar with the language of rights and responsibilities.
Yet the call to virtues is deeper and ultimately more compelling. Pope Francis is not coming as a scold but as a guide to help us find a solution to the paradox of the poverty of the spirit in the rising sea of affluence. He is not speaking the language of duties and responsibilities but of human meaning. He is not rejecting the libertarian defense of human dignity but saying that dignity is found not only through individual rights and free markets but from within, by each person pursuing the virtues of charity, justice and compassion in solidarity with the common good. This, after all, is the message of hope that brought the multitudes to hear Jesus preach.
In short, Americans will be expected to declare their Declaration of Independence ''outmoded'' and flawed, just as Barack Obama said it was in a 2001 radio interview:
'''...[T]he Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth, and of more basic issues such as political and economic justice in society. To that extent, as radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn't that radical. It didn't break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution, at least as it's been interpreted, and the Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can't do to you. Says what the federal government can't do to you, but doesn't say what the federal government or state government must do on your behalf.
''And that hasn't shifted and one of the, I think, tragedies of the civil rights movement was because the civil rights movement became so court-focused I think there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalition of powers through which you bring about redistributive change. In some ways we still suffer from that.''
We must '' or our warders must, we lack their intellectual and moral wherewithal, don't we? '' amend the Constitution to comply with UN rules and regulations, and to turn themselves into Kantian automatons fulfilling their categorical imperative-dictated duties to save the world and to feel everyone's pain but their own UN-devised destitution. Thus spoke Jeffrey Sachs and Pope Francis and Glen Greenwald and every other America hater, who never miss an opportunity to scold the U.S. for being so selfish and loot-worthy and recklessly leaving its carbon footprints all over the globe. What were those lyrics from the Entrance and March of the Peers in Gilbert & Sullivan's Iolanthe?
Bow, bow, ye lower middle classes!
Bow, bow, ye tradesmen, bow, ye masses!
Blow the trumpets, bang the brasses'....!
Sachs wrote in ''America'':
As a macroeconomist, I have tried to put the challenge of compassion into the hard financial terms of the national income accounts. For 20 years I have tried to work up the balance sheet of social justice, so to speak, in order to measure the scale of investments that society needs to make in order to overcome extreme poverty; control epidemic diseases likes [sic] AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and Ebola; and convert our energy systems from climate-changing fossil fuels to safe, low-carbon energy sources like solar, wind, geothermal and hydroelectric power. The paradox that I have found time and again is that for a tiny investment of material goods'--perhaps 2 percent to 3 percent per year of our global income'--we could mobilize our technological excellence to end the scourges of extreme poverty, disease and environmental degradation that cause great global suffering and that in fact threaten our very survival. Solutions to our global material problems, whether climate change or epidemic control, are within our grasp, but only if we try.
So, Professor Sachs, which is it going to be? Do we surrender to the ineffable forces of Marx's dialectical materialism, or to the Triumph of the Will? Or your Will?
Curious about the nature of Pope Francis' forthcoming encyclical, Evangeli Gaudium: On the Proclamation of the Gospel in Today's World, on which Sachs places so much hope, I dipped into this mile-long screed and found some interesting observations. From Chapter II, point 64:
The process of secularization tends to reduce the faith and the Church to the sphere of the private and personal. Furthermore, by completely rejecting the transcendent, it has produced a growing deterioration of ethics, a weakening of the sense of personal and collective sin, and a steady increase in relativism. These have led to a general sense of disorientation, especially in the periods of adolescence and young adulthood which are so vulnerable to change.
As the bishops of the United States of America have rightly pointed out, while the Church insists on the existence of objective moral norms which are valid for everyone, ''there are those in our culture who portray this teaching as unjust, that is, as opposed to basic human rights. Such claims usually follow from a form of moral relativism that is joined'...to a belief in the absolute rights of individuals. In this view, the Church is perceived as promoting a particular prejudice and as interfering with individual freedom.'' We are living in an information-driven society which bombards us indiscriminately with data '' all treated as being of equal importance '' and which leads to remarkable superficiality in the area of moral discernment. In response, we need to provide an education which teaches critical thinking and encourages the development of mature moral values. [All Italics mine]
''Mature'' meaning altruistic values and an ''educated'' sense of selflessness, something American public schools are busy developing. We move on to point 93 of Chapter II:
The process of secularization tends to reduce the faith and the Church to the sphere of the private and personal. Furthermore, by completely rejecting the transcendent, it has produced a growing deterioration of ethics, a weakening of the sense of personal and collective sin, and a steady increase in relativism. These have led to a general sense of disorientation, especially in the periods of adolescence and young adulthood which are so vulnerable to change.
As the bishops of the United States of America have rightly pointed out, while the Church insists on the existence of objective moral norms which are valid for everyone, ''there are those in our culture who portray this teaching as unjust, that is, as opposed to basic human rights. Such claims usually follow from a form of moral relativism that is joined'...to a belief in the absolute rights of individuals. In this view, the Church is perceived as promoting a particular prejudice and as interfering with individual freedom.'' We are living in an information-driven society which bombards us indiscriminately with data '' all treated as being of equal importance '' and which leads to remarkable superficiality in the area of moral discernment. In response, we need to provide an education which teaches critical thinking and encourages the development of mature moral values. [All Italics mine]
Kincaid ends his article with:
Rather than emphasize the absolute need for safeguarding individual rights in the face of government overreach and power, Sachs writes that the Gospel teachings of humility, love and justice, ''like the teachings of Aristotle, Buddha and Confucius,'' can take us on a ''path to happiness through compassion'' and ''become our guideposts back to safety.''
Writing elsewhere in the new issue of America, Christiana Z. Peppard, an assistant professor of theology, science and ethics at Fordham University, writes about the ''planetary pope,'' saying, ''What is really at stake in the collective response to the pope's encyclical is not, ultimately, whether our treasured notions of theology, science, reality or development can accommodate moral imperatives. The real question is whether we are brave enough and willing to try.''
The plan is quite simple: world government through global taxes, with a religious face to bring it about.
Or global jizya, with a religious face to bring about ''peace''? In its essentials, Sachs' plan for the future sacking of America differs little from Islam's. They are copasetic. As Ellsworth Toohey put it so well at the end of The Fountainhead on the secret of acquiring power over men: ''Fight the doctrine that slaughters the individual with a doctrine that slaughters the individual.'' (p. 694)
Talk about clashing brasses!
The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand. New York: Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1943. 754 pp.
About Edward ClineEdward Cline is a novelist who has written on the revolutionary war period. He is author of the Sparrowhawk series of novels set in England and Virginia in the Revolutionary period, the detective novel First Prize, the suspense novel Whisper the Guns, and of numerous published articles, book reviews and essays.
Airbus: A400M engines have a bug, company warns
Sun, 24 May 2015 00:18
The Airbus A400M. Picture: AirwolfhoundSource: Flickr
AIRBUS has warned of a technical bug potentially affecting the engines of its A400M that was discovered during an internal test after one of the military planes crashed in Spain.
The company said in a statement it had sent out an alert to its clients urging them to carry out ''specific checks of the Electronic Control Units (ECU) on each of the aircraft's engines''.
The ECU controls how the aircraft's engine operates.
The potential flaw was uncovered during internal checks separate from an official investigation into the crash of an A400M cargo plane near Seville in which four people were killed 10 days ago. ''To avoid potential risks in any future flights, Airbus Defence and Space has informed the operators about necessary actions to take,'' the company said.
Airbus A400M. Picture: FotorusSource: Flickr
The crash of the A400M a few minutes into a test flight just north of Seville's airport prompted five countries '-- Spain, Britain, Germany, Turkey and Malaysia '-- to ground their planes. France, which has six of the A400M planes in active operation, said it would only carry out the most pressing flights until more details emerge on why the military aircraft went down.
Two of the six people on board the plane, a mechanic and an engineer, survived the crash and were sent to hospital in a critical condition.
The A400M, a large, propeller-driven transport aircraft, was launched in 2003 to respond to the needs of seven NATO members '-- Belgium, Britain, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Spain and Turkey '-- with Malaysia joining in 2005.
Airbus A400M. Picture: Thomasz DunnSource: Flickr
A total of 174 A400M planes have since been ordered by the eight nations, which are seeking to replace their ageing Hercules fleets. The plane's 12-wheel landing gear allows it to land on soft and rough airstrips as short as 750 metres, making it ideal for military and humanitarian missions.
Airbus demonstrated its A00M at Farnborough Air Show as it attempted to ramp up its export campaign. Robert Wall explains what Airbus will need to do for the A400M to reach its full potential.
Ireland Is First Country To Legalize Gay Marriage By Popular Vote
Sat, 23 May 2015 23:51
DUBLIN (AP) '-- Irish voters backed legalizing gay marriage by a landslide, electoral officials announced Saturday '-- a stunning result that illustrates the rapid social change taking place in this traditionally Catholic nation.
Friday's referendum saw 62.1 percent of Irish voters saying "yes" to changing the nation's constitution to allow gay marriage. Outside Dublin Castle, watching the results announcement in the castle's cobblestoned courtyard, thousands of gay rights activists cheered, hugged and cried at the news.
"With today's vote we have disclosed who we are: a generous, compassionate, bold and joyful people," Prime Minister Enda Kenny proclaimed as he welcomed the outcome.
The unexpectedly strong percentage of approval surprised both sides. Analysts and campaigners credited the "yes" side with adeptly using social media to mobilize first-time young voters and for a series of searing personal stories from Irish gay people that convinced voters to back equal marriage rights.
Ireland is the first country to approve gay marriage in a popular national vote. Nineteen other countries have legalized the practice.
"We're the first country in the world to enshrine marriage equality in our constitution and do so by popular mandate. That makes us a beacon, a light to the rest of the world, of liberty and equality. So it's a very proud day to be Irish," said Leo Varadkar, a Cabinet minister who came out as gay at the start of a government-led effort to amend Ireland's conservative Catholic constitution.
"People from the LGBT community in Ireland are a minority. But with our parents, our families, or friends and co-workers and colleagues, we're a majority," said Varadkar, who watched the votes being tabulated at the County Dublin ballot center. "For me it wasn't just a referendum. It was more like a social revolution."
Michael Barron and Jaime Nanci, a gay couple legally married in South Africa five years ago, celebrated with friends at the Dublin City counting center as the reality sank in that, once Ireland's parliament passes the complementary legislation, their foreign marriage will be recognized in their homeland.
"Oh.My.God! We're actually Married now!" Nanci tweeted to his spouse and the world, part of a cavalcade of tweets from Ireland tagged #LandslideOfLove.
Political analysts who have covered Irish referendums for decades agreed that Saturday's emerging landslide marked a stunning generational shift from the 1980s, when voters still firmly backed Catholic Church teachings and overwhelmingly voted against abortion and divorce.
"We're in a new country," said political analyst Sean Donnelly, who called the result "a tidal wave" that has produced pro-gay marriage majorities in even the most traditionally conservative rural corners of Ireland.
"I'm of a different generation," said the gray-haired Donnelly, who has covered Irish politics since the 1970s. "When I was reared up, the church was all powerful and the word 'gay' wasn't even in use in those days. How things have moved from my childhood to now. It's been a massive change for a conservative country."
Ireland's deputy prime minister, Labour Party leader Joan Burton, said Ireland was becoming "a rainbow nation with a huge amount of diversity." She said while campaigning door to door, she met older gay people who described how society made them "live in a shadow and apart," and younger voters who were keen to ensure that Irish homosexuals live "as free citizens in a free republic."
The "yes" side ran a creative, compelling campaign that harnessed the power of social media to mobilize young voters, tens of thousands of whom voted for the first time Friday. The vote came five years after parliament approved marriage-style civil partnerships for gay couples.
Those seeking a "no" outcome described their defeat as almost inevitable, given that all of Ireland's political parties and most politicians backed the legalization of homosexual unions. David Quinn, leader of the Catholic think tank Iona Institute, said he was troubled by the fact that no political party backed the "no" cause.
"We helped to provide a voice to the hundreds of thousands of Irish people who did vote no. The fact that no political party supported them must be a concern from a democratic point of view," he said.
Fianna Fail party leader Michael Martin, a Cork politician whose opposition party is traditionally closest to the Catholic Church, said he couldn't in good conscience back the anti-gay marriage side because "it's simply wrong in the 21st century to oppress people because of their sexuality."
Some in Martin's party '-- the perennial heavyweight in Irish politics but decimated since its ouster from power following Ireland's 2010 international bailout '-- did privately oppose the amendment, but only one spoke out in favor of the "no" side.
John Lyons, one of just four openly gay lawmakers in the 166-member parliament, waved the rainbow flag of the Gay Pride movement in the Dublin City counting center and cried tears of joy. He paid special credit to the mobilization of younger voters, many of whom traveled home from work or studies abroad just to vote.
"Most of the young people I canvassed with have never knocked on a door in their lives," Lyons said. "This says something about modern Ireland. Let's never underestimate the electorate or what they think."
Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
President of network news division confirms that 70 percent of revenue comes from pharma advertisements
Sat, 23 May 2015 23:50
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is at it again. After speaking in Sacramento, California against SB-277, pummeling the Centers for Disease Control during public testimony in Vermontand appearing on Bill Maher's HBO show to do the same, he has now broke major news during a recent interview. Speaking with former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura regarding the vaccine industry and big pharma, Kennedy confirmed what many have assumed by stating:"I ate breakfast last week with the president of a network news division and he told me that during non-election years, 70% of the advertising revenues for his news division come from pharmaceutical ads. And if you go on TV any night and watch the network news, you'll see they become just a vehicle for selling pharmaceuticals. He also told me that he would fire a host who brought onto his station a guest who lost him a pharmaceutical account."
These powerful admissions by Kennedy are made with the supporting backdrop of five-time Emmy Award winning investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson recently stated:
"If people were simply covering in terms of news value, facts, and fairness we'd be giving way more coverage to vaccine side effects, autism, ADD, and all the immune disorders that have emerged in the past and been made untouchable by this environment that I've discussed with you (referring to astroturfing.)
Indeed it appears that we are seeing a major push by highly unethical, fraudulent pharmaceutical companies attempting to legally corral the entire American public into unwilling consumers of their vaccine products. This current move has revealed major conflicts-of-interest among many senators, news organizations and regulatory agencies. In addition, there appears to be a near mutiny among good senators and congressmen who are rapidly introducing bills to counter the drug company-sponsored vaccine exemption removal push being witnessed in state houses across the U.S.
USA ''Freedom'' Act Dies in a Midnight Session '' Expect ''Crisis Compromise'' on May 31
Sat, 23 May 2015 23:48
by Scott Creighton
Don't get too excited folks. This is just more cheap theatrics setting up a ''crisis compromise'' on May 31.
Last night during a special midnight session of the senate, the latest House version of the USA Freedom Act was blocked by a narrow margin in a 57-42 vote. President Obama has been pressuring congress to pass the Freedom Act as a ''fix'' to the bulk collection authorization found in section 215 of the USA Patriot Act which is set to expire at midnight, May 31.
The senate also failed to extend the Patriot Act for a few more months as they headed off for their Memorial Day vacation.
But don't worry, a last minute emergency ''crisis compromise'' session is already scheduled:
Senate Majority Leader McConnell (R-KY) scheduled a last-minute session on May 31st for one last shot at passing the bill. Verge
That gives them 7 days to have their corporate lawyers slap in all kinds of new language in the ''Freedom'' Act so they can dump it on the desks of Senators and Representatives at the last minute then scare them into signing it into law.
If you recall, when the Patriot Act met resistance in congress back in 2001, someone had to send some anthrax to various journalists and congressmen who opposed the bill in order to get it signed.
The Henny-Penny clucks are already starting. If this bill isn't signed and all those companies don't get what they want, who knows what some folks might be capable of when trying to motivate a few stubborn senators.
You might recall when they failed to pass the TARP bill back in late 2008, there was a ''flash crash'' in Wall Street caused by the computer trading machines and Hank Paulson threatened congress with martial law if the banksters didn't get what they wanted back then.
You see, when terrorism is your preferred tool for foreign policy, one shouldn't be surprised when it becomes the same for your domestic agenda.
The ''Freedom''Act does not end bulk collection of data. It just privatizes it. It also allows Big Business to do with your data as they wish. They will collect it, they will store it, hell, they'll even get the old data which the government holds today as a bonus. Decades worth for Big Business to do with as they see fit.
''The government would still be able to conduct some bulk data collection. The N.S.A. has used a section of the law that created the FISA court for vast sweeps of phone and email data. Judiciary Committee members from both parties sought to end that data-collection avenue as well, but leaders of the committee beat that effort back'...'' New York Times
In effect, bulk data collection of everything you do, say, write, Tweet, blog, buy and watch would not only continue in a privatized fashion, but it would be codified into law in the most sweeping reform to the surveillance state in over 40 years. And of course, the NSA and FBI and the Five Eyes program featuring foreign intelligence agencies from around the world would STILL be able to access all your data as well after they go to a ''secret court'' to get permission.
''Under the bipartisan bills in the House and Senate, the Patriot Act would be changed to prohibit bulk collection, and sweeps that had operated under the guise of so-called National Security Letters issued by the F.B.I. would end. The data would instead be stored by the phone companies themselves, and could be accessed by intelligence agencies only after approval of the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court.'' New York Times
Not only does this bill privatize the bulk collection of data, it also immunizes Big Telecom against whatever they choose to do with it.
''Rather than fundamentally changing the way the NSA scoops up data, the bill merely outsources collection to immunized telecoms, compelling them to do the NSA's dirty work'...
The so-called ''transparency'' provisions in the bill contain numerous loopholes..
Some civil liberties groups, like the ACLU and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, argue that the present bill is ''a first step,'' and is better than nothing. This is nonsense: this bill is worse than nothing''. Justin Raimondo
They'll be able to use it to build profiles of you, your family, your friends. They'll even be able to take action against you personally if they deem your activities to be a danger to ''national security'' a.k.a. ''corporate interests''
That's why Big Business wants the Freedom Act and President Fascist wants it as well. Everyone who knows what side their bread is buttered on is doing everything they can to push it through.
This ''Freedom'' Act, written by the same guy who wrote the Patriot Act, is worse than doing nothing. That's why they have to postpone the passage of it til the very last minute so they can claim it was a ''crisis'' and they had to do something.
This staged moment of victory for those of us out here warning others about the dangers of this bill is just a momentary reprieve. They'll probably make the bill even worse if that's possible over the next 7 days while the whole time the MSM is screeching about how the FBI wont be able to stop those terrorist plots and plans they create themselves without it.
The best solution is to let the Patriot Act die as well as the Orwellian-named ''Freedom'' Act but unfortunately we are heading into the Fascist States of America days and Big Business has a plan for us all. On May 31, expect the great compromise to help bring about the end of this Great Experiment.
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Filed under: CIA are the Real Terrorists, fascism in America, Fascism², Fuck Obama, Globalization, Neoliberalizing America, Obama', Scott Creighton, TPP, TTIP, USA Freedom Act
The President Speaks On National Jewish American Heritage Month
Sat, 23 May 2015 21:26
May 22, 2015 | 28:40 | Public Domain
President Obama delivers remarks at Adas Israel Congregation in Washington, D.C. in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month. May 22, 2015.
Download mp4 (1060MB) | mp3 (69MB)
West Wing Week: 05/22/2015 or, ''@POTUS''
Sat, 23 May 2015 21:26
May 22, 2015 | 4:32 | Public Domain
This week was National Police Week, and the President honored fallen officers at the National Peace Officers Memorial Service, celebrated the reform efforts of police officers in Camden, New Jersey, signed the National Blue Alert Act to help protect police officers, and congratulated the graduates at the 134th Commencement of the Coast Guard Academy in Connecticut. POTUS also sent his first tweet. That's May 15th to May 21st or, "@POTUS."
Senator Inhofe: Patriot Act Critics Forget That North Korea, Iraq on Path to ''Kill Everyone''
Sat, 23 May 2015 21:26
Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., says his office is getting deluged with phone calls in support of his colleague Sen. Rand Paul's, R-Ky., campaign to end dragnet surveillance enabled by the Patriot Act.
But in an interview on Friday with radio station KTOK in Oklahoma City, Inhofe dismissed his constituents, claiming that privacy advocates don't understand that ''we're in the most threatened position in the history of this country.''
The senator argued ''countries like North Korea, Iran, Iraq, Syria, all of them are on the path to getting bombs and delivery systems that would reach the United States of America and could have the effect of killing everyone who is listening now.''
Inhofe went on to say that ''everyone in the leadership except the president of the United States'' recognizes the threat he was describing, adding, ''when you stop and think and make a choice between having a complete city bombed out and privacy, my choice is easy.''
Listen to the Inhofe's remarks here:
The future of the Patriot Act is in flux as the House of Representatives leaves Washington for a Memorial Day recess week. Several important sections of the Patriot Act expire at the end of the month. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has called for a series of votes this weekend on separate proposals, including a full reauthorization of the Patriot Act and the USA Freedom Act, which would codify the bulk collection of metadata while adding privacy reforms to the process.
Inhofe later moved on from the NSA and privacy during the interview, telling KTOK that he is focused on working to ''stop the EPA over-regulation that's killing our farmers and a lot of our businesspeople.'' Notably, the Environmental Protection Agency has not killed any farmers or business people.
(This post is from our blog: Unofficial Sources.)
Photo: Senator Jim Inhofe, (Brendan Smialowski/Getty)
Yemeni Cyber Army group hacks 3,000 Saudi govt computers revealing top secret docs
Sat, 23 May 2015 21:24
(C) Reuters / Ints Kalnins
Yemeni hackers have allegedly released thousands of top secret Saudi Arabia documents, including spies' identities, after gaining "full control" of over 3,000 computers and servers belonging to Riyadh's Foreign, Interior and Defense Ministries.The Yemen Cyber Army group claims it not only has the addresses, phone numbers and emails of top Saudi diplomats, Foreign Ministry staff, secret agents and army personnel, but also got hold of classified files and correspondence of senior Riyadh officials with other countries and governments since early 1980s.
"We have gained access to the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) network and have full control over more than 3,000 computers and servers, and thousands of users. We also have access to the emails, personal and secret information of hundreds of thousands of their staff and diplomats in different missions around the world," the hackers informed in a statement cited by the Iranian semi-official Fars news agency.
"We publish only few portions of the vital information we have, just to let them know that 'truly the flimsiest of houses is the spider's house'," the hackers' statement alleged.
The Yemen Cyber Army has pledged that "portions of the visa secret information, thousands of documents from the Saudi Foreign Ministry automation system and secret emails will be published gradually so as to keep Saudi puppets always in fear of their identity disclosure.The statement further vowed to automatically wipe the Saudi Foreign Ministry computer systems and servers at 12:00 Wednesday midnight.
"We have the same access to the Interior Ministry (MOI) and Defense Ministry (MOD) of which the details will be published in near future" the hacking group added. According to Fars, the group has also warned that it would soon cause greater damage on the Riyadh government if it refrains from attacking "Muslims in Yemen," adding, "Do not blame anyone but yourself and expect greater harms."
Yemen Cyber Army first made headlines in mid-April when it hacked the website of a London-based daily newspaper al-Hayat in protest at Riyadh's 'invasion' of Yemen. According to a statement left on AlHayat's website, which also run a photo of the Lebanese Hezbollah leader Seyed Hassan Nasrallah, the hackers wanted "to support Yemen revolution."In a bid "to warn all Pro-Saudi or pan-Arabs accept Yemen Revolution and join us against your dictators", the Yemeni group had also reportedly leaked the names of the paper's readers and subscribers.
Last week a Saudi Arabian-led coalition resumed airstrikes against Yemen's Houthi militia, shortly after the expiry of a five-day ceasefire which was introduced to allow delivery of food, fuel and medication to those caught in the conflict. The bombardment resumed despite UN calls to extend the humanitarian pause.
In September, Houthi rebels took control of the capital, Sanaa, ousting Sunni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who fled to Saudi Arabia.
According to UN humanitarian agency UNHCR, as of mid-May 1,849 people had been killed and 7,394 others injured in the Yemeni conflict, since the Saudi-led air campaign began in late March. The escalating humanitarian crisis has already left millions short of food and fuel.
Recent poll of Americans shows how wrong they are estimating homosexual population
Sat, 23 May 2015 14:11
(C) AP Photo/ Noah Berger
A recent Gallup poll has exposed that Americans' estimates of the proportion of homosexuals in the United States are "many times higher" than the actual percentage, indicating a distorted perception of this demographic group among the US population."The American public estimates on average that 23% of Americans are gay or lesbian, little changed from Americans' 25% estimate in 2011...These estimates are many times higher than the 3.8% of the adult population who identified themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender," the Gallup Poll revealed.
Remarkably, the National health Interview Survey released by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in July, 2014 found that less than three percent of the American civilians labeled themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual.
Only 1.6 percent of adults said they were homosexual, and 0.7 percent self-identified as bisexuals. The overwhelming majority - more than 96 percent - classified themselves as straight.
According to Gallup, all available estimates of the actual homosexual population in the United States are "far lower" than what Americans estimate.
The Gallup report also revealed that younger Americans give higher estimates than older US civilians, claiming that the actual percentage of homosexuals is about 28 percent of the US population.According to the researchers, this phenomenon may be partly caused by Americans' lack of knowledge about statistics.
On the other hand, this overestimation may have its roots in a frequent media portrayal of gay characters on television, in movies and other media, as well as in "the high visibility of activists who have pushed gay causes, particularly legalizing same-sex marriage," the researchers elaborated.
Comment: Seems there are a couple reasons for this large discrepancy between perception and reality. First, the cultural proliferation of the gay rights movement. It's worth questioning whether the gay rights movement achieved anything on a personal discrimination level for individual homosexuals. It's difficult to objectively assess that, but apparently what can be said is that it has played a part in leading Americans to think that 25% of the population is gay when the actual figure is 3.8%. Then there is also the propagandizing figures given by Alfred Kinsey and his Kinsey scale which gave a high figure of homosexuality for years until it became "common knowledge". For instance, the study that the scale was based on reported:10% of American males surveyed were "more or less exclusively homosexual for at least three years between the ages of 16 and 55
Clearly those numbers are total nonsense, but take the combination of the Kinsey gay propaganda and media saturation and we have just another subject which Americans are quite falsely informed.
Obama signs bill creating Amber Alert system for violence against law enforcement
Sat, 23 May 2015 14:03
On Tuesday, President Barack Obama signed a new bill intended to help keep better track of violent attacks against law enforcement. S.665 is also known as the Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu National Blue Alert Act of 2015, named for two NYPD officers killed late last year. It will set up infrastructure at the local, state, and federal level to keep meticulous track of acts committed against police. According to Congress' website, the bill will create a Department of Justice-sponsored "Blue Alert" system, which mirrors the Amber Alert system created to locate abducted children.The bill defines "Blue Alert" as
"...information sent through the network relating to: (1) the serious injury or death of a law enforcement officer in the line of duty, (2) an officer who is missing in connection with the officer's official duties, or (3) an imminent and credible threat that an individual intends to cause the serious injury or death of a law enforcement officer."
On one hand, there is already a system in place to record the deaths of police officers. The FBI issues a national, annual report that details the number of officers killed and attacked (it also lists accidental deaths). Last year, 51 officers were killed on the job.Absent from the new bill was any attempt to record the numbers of murders committed by law enforcement. The deficiency in recording these figures is far more severe than recording deaths of cops. This is because the only numbers the federal government keeps on civilians are reported on a voluntary basis by local departments. Out of 17,000 local departments in America,only about 750 report heir data. In contrast, there is a high probability that departments are more eager to report the deaths of their own than the ones they cause.
Though there have been calls to keep better numbers on civilian deaths at the hands of police, Congress is evidently more concerned with several dozen murdered police officers than with the thousands of civilians who have lost their lives due to the authoritarianism this bill aims to protect.
Perhaps most concerning is the component of the bill that will keep tabs on "imminent and credible threats" made against law enforcement. As with many laws, the language of this bill is exceptionally vague. Left up to interpretation, this could result in increased monitoring and control of freedom of expression beyond what already occurs. As if local police departments and the federal government did not haveenough leewaytomonitor speech, further authorization is now codified and implicitly criminalized.
This seems to be overkill, considering multiple individuals have been arrested for making the exact same "threats" noted in the bill. Though S.665 does not establish punishment for such offenses, it sets up a solid framework to target those who make statements the government does not approve of.
Most ironically, the law establishes "standards that specifically provide for the protection of the civil liberties of law enforcement officers and their families." The bill predictably makes no mention of the variety of civil liberties violations that police commit, from spying to ignoring due process to killing unarmed and non-violent individuals.
While it is no surprise that the government is concerned with keeping track of violence against their own agents, it is a disturbing implication that there is no motivation to do the same for the citizens Congress allegedly represents.
Ira Glass Clarifies That Public Radio Is Ready for the GOOD Kind of Capitalism | FAIR
Sat, 23 May 2015 13:52
Ira Glass tell advertisers: ''Public radio is ready for capitalism.'' (photo: Matthew Septimus/NPR)
''My hope is that we can move away from a model of asking listeners for money and join the free market,'' host of public radio's This American Life Ira Glass declared last month (Ad Age, 4/30/15):
I think we're ready for capitalism which made this country so great. Public radio is ready for capitalism.
The context was ''Hearing Is Believing,'' an event sponsored by NPR and member stations WNYC and WBEZ to pitch public radio (and its podcasts) as an advertising vehicle (American Community Radio, 5/12/15).
Last week, Glass wrote a column in the public broadcasting trade paper Current (5/13/15) to ''clarify'' his comments: He was not suggesting that programmers ''chase ratings and destroy everything that makes public radio special.'' Instead, he meant he wanted ''companies [to] come on our shows and pay lots of money,'' and then public radio should use that money for good things''not bad things, as you might have assumed that he meant.
''It feels almost insulting to have to say,'' Glass says, that he's not calling for ''turn[ing] public radio into a moronic money-grabbing wasteland of commercial shillery.'' Likewise, it feels almost insulting to point out to Glass that noncommercial broadcasting was founded to be an alternative to commercial broadcasting.
The problem with commercial broadcasting was not that everyone in it had bad intentions. Nor was noncommercial broadcasting set up as place where all the broadcasters with good intentions would gather. The founding principal, rather, was that there needed to be a space on the broadcasting spectrum where programming was not dependent on advertising dollars''because it was recognized that relying on corporate sponsors inherently limits the kind of shows you can do and colors what you put on the air.
That's why they called it ''noncommercial radio'' rather than ''good intentions radio.''
In a ''trust me'' moment, Glass quotes his mother:
She used to say that the best predictor of a person's future behavior is his or her past behavior. I see no reason why public radio programmers would be exempt from that principle.
When FAIR has looked in the past at the programming of public radio, actually, we've found it's left a lot to be desired. Public radio has long depended on corporate ''underwriters'' for a significant segment of its funding, and it's long exhibited the same narrow guestlists typical of the commercial broadcasting that public radio is supposed to be an alternative to.
When we did a study in 2004 (Extra!, 5-6/04), for example, of the sources on All Things Considered, Morning Edition and Weekend Edition, we found that these shows' regular commentators were 80 percent white and 76 percent male. An earlier study of All Things Considered and Morning Edition (Extra!, 4-5/93) found commentators who were 96 percent white and 85 percent male.
Both studies found that viewpoints from outside the two-party system were rare, and within that system there was a conservative slant: Among partisan sources (politicians, campaign officials and the like), Republicans outnumbered Democrats by more than 3 to 2 (61 percent to 38 percent) in 2004, during the Bush administration, and by a smaller margin (57 percent to 42 percent) in 1993, when Bill Clinton was president.
It's unclear how going after corporate dollars more aggressively is going to make NPR's programming more inclusive or less narrow.
Glass also clarified that when he said he wanted to ''move away from a model of asking listeners for money and join the free market,'' he didn't mean he wanted to stop asking listeners for money:
Listener donations are not going away. And they shouldn't go away. Public support is one of the foundations of public radio, one of its great strengths, something that gives listeners a connection to our work and a sense of ownership over what we do that's literal. It's hard to imagine a healthy public radio system without it.
It's not clear, though, why getting money from listeners gives them ''a sense of ownership over what we do that's literal'' but getting money from corporations does not likewise give them a literal sense of ownership. Perhaps Glass can clarify that in a future column.
You can send messages to Ira Glass of This American Life here (or via Twitter@IraGlass). Please remember that respectful communication is the most effective.
Hear Jim Naureckas debate advertising on public radio on KCRW's To the Point (5/22/15).
We Owe Martha Stewart an Apology - The Daily Beast
Sat, 23 May 2015 13:48
Double Standard05.22.155:20 AM ET
After five of the biggest banks in the world pleaded guilty to criminal charges'--and not a single person will face jail time for those crimes'--it's time to admit Martha Stewart should've never served time in prison at all.
On Wednesday, five of the largest banks in the world agreed to pay a combined $5.6 billion to the U.S. Treasury and then pleaded guilty to a series of criminal charges that they had operated for years as a secret cabal to manipulate currency exchange rates, in many cases directly ripping off clients in the process.
The new felons are J.P. Morgan Chase (the largest bank in the U.S. by assets), Citigroup (the third-largest by assets), Barclays (the largest U.K. bank), UBS (the largest bank in Switzerland) and the Royal Bank of Scotland.
Now, just like Martha Stewart'--who was not convicted of any Wall Street wrongdoing'--the executives of these banks will all share a cell together at Federal Prison Camp in Alderson, West Virginia.
Except, of course, they won't. The overwhelming majority of the banks' top executives will never go to jail. Aside from the fines, which the banks will happily pay up out of their ample reserves, the banks will face no real consequences for their actions.
Barclays, UBS, and Royal Bank of Scotland will still be allowed to do business in America. J.P. Morgan and Citigroup will continue to dominate the industry. Bank of America, by the way'--the second-largest bank in the U.S. by assets'--also paid a fine but did not admit to criminal acts.
In her victory lap, newly ensconced Attorney General Loretta Lynch emphasized that the Department of Justice extracted guilty pleas not from subsidiaries of the banks, but from the parent companies themselves.
The message she was trying to convey? The DOJ had taught a lesson about responsibility. They had not accepted the usual Wall Street excuse'--that its institutions are sound, but that there are a few bad actors in any big company.
The message that got through? The exact opposite.
''The lesson here is that the conduct of a small group of employees, or of even a single employee, can reflect badly on all of us and have significant ramifications for the entire firm,'' said J.P. Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon.
Indeed, Wednesday, May 19, might have been a seminal day for American justice'--if the federal government can just agree to settle all of its nonviolent criminal cases by having the defendant admit wrongdoing while paying an eye-popping (but ultimately affordable) fine with no threat of prison or even radical lifestyle alteration'--what accused American wouldn't just settle with prosecutors?
And in the future, what American wouldn't just put the American stock market at risk in perpetuity knowing he or she can just pay the fine?
If President Obama believes that his Justice Department has won a major victory against duplicitous banks, then he should take this opportunity to go back and correct the record.
Which brings us back to Federal Prison Camp in Alderson, West Virginia. In 2004, this is where Martha Stewart served a five-month prison sentence for lying to investigators who believed that she had avoided $45,000 in losses by trading ImClone stock on a tip from her broker that founder Sam Waksal was dumping shares.
The insider trading case was weak. She acted on her broker's advice. The government would have had a devil of a time proving that she knew that advice was tainted by material, non-public information, or that a woman worth hundreds of millions of dollars would break the law over the price of a car too cheap for her to even want.
But she lied to investigators and ticked off the government.
''It's very important for us to protect the integrity of the system,'' said Manhattan's U.S. attorney, David Kelley, defending the verdict. Kelley did have to defend the verdict, by the way. Although some enjoyed schadenfreude at Stewart's expense, the government's case did seem petty and vindictive. It certainly lacked the gravity of a case where multiple powerful financial institutions have admitted to rigging currency markets.
If President Obama believes that his Justice Department has won a major victory against duplicitous banks, then he should take this opportunity to go back and correct the record.
Stewart not only lost five months of her life to prison, she lost her executive position at the company she founded and was subject to ridicule and humiliation throughout her trial.
Clear her record. Give her a full pardon. Do the same for her broker, Peter Bacanovic. He should not only pardon these people, but the United States should apologize to both of them for the government's aggressive handling of such a minor issue.
While Obama's at it, he can apologize to Bacanovic's assistant, Douglas Faneuil, a young man bullied by investigators into turning on his boss.
To get a sense of how little these admissions and penalties mean, just look at the stock prices: Citigroup closed Thursday down 0.09 percent. JP Morgan was up 0.26%. Barclays was up 0.71%. UBS was down 0.32%. Royal Bank of Scotland was up 1.00%.
But Stewart, then a 63-year-old cookbook magnate, spent a winter in a prison that was almost impossible for her then-90-year-old mother to access.
''A Justice Department spokesman said that the government was concerned that the decision to send Ms. Stewart to Alderson would be perceived as vindictive,'' The New York Times' Barry Meier wrote in 2004. ''But that official, who asked not to be identified, insisted Ms. Stewart's fate had been sealed by her own fame.''
So far, around 20 bank employees have been fired over this and promises of internal investigations suggest more to follow. But top-level bankers are not losing jobs over this. No powerful lives have been altered.
The banks will still be allowed to pursue business as usual. Before pleading guilty to their crimes, the banks received waivers from the Securities and Exchange Commission, exempting them from rules that prevent felons from running mutual funds or underwriting stock and bond offerings.
Our justice system is obviously unwilling to hold banks to the standards of people. So let's do the opposite. Let's start holding people to the standards we hold our banks. It will be easier on everyone.
Insecure, narcissistic people more likely to post on Facebook '' report '-- RT UK
Sat, 23 May 2015 13:44
Published time: May 22, 2015 18:21(Reuters / Dado Ruvic)
People suffering from low self-esteem are more likely to post their relationship status on Facebook, a new study has found.
A report from Brunel University, published Friday, found that the popular Facebook ''relationship status'' feature was used by individuals with low self-esteem to generate attention to distract from their own feelings.
''People with low self-esteem are more likely to see the advantage of self-disclosing on Facebook rather than in person,'' the report said.
However, rather than providing a boost of self-confidence, the romantic status posts ''tend to be perceived as less likeable,'' it added.
Data collected from a sample of 555 Facebook users took into account the frequency with which users engaged with the social network, whether or not they were involved in a relationship and the amount of time they spent checking Facebook.
''Sixty-five percent of participants were currently involved in a romantic relationship, and 34 percent had at least one child,'' the report said.
A total of 57 percent checked Facebook on a daily basis, and spent an average of 108 minutes a day actively using it, it added.
READ MORE: Challenging beauty myth: Aussie Down syndrome teen inspires army of online fans
The report also found that ''narcissists'' were likely to post about their achievements, rather than relationships, ''indicating that narcissists' boasting may be reinforced by the attention they crave.''
They were also more likely to post about health and fitness regimes ''suggesting that they use Facebook to broadcast the effort they put into their physical appearance,'' the report said.
Psychology lecturer Dr Tara Marshall, from Brunel University London, said: ''It might come as little surprise that Facebook status updates reflect people's personality traits. However, it is important to understand why people write about certain topics on Facebook because their updates may be differentially rewarded with 'likes' and comments.''
''People who receive more likes and comments tend to experience the benefits of social inclusion, whereas those who receive none feel ostracized,'' she said.
''Although our results suggest that narcissists' bragging pays off because they receive more likes and comments to their status updates, it could be that their Facebook friends politely offer support while secretly disliking such egotistical displays,'' Marshall said.
''Greater awareness of how one's status updates might be perceived by friends could help people to avoid topics that annoy more than they entertain.''
In the past, the links between usage of social media and emotional stability have been exploited by advertisers and social networks alike.
In July 2014, it was revealed that Facebook was performing manipulative social experiments on unknowing users.
The social media giant changed the information posted on 689,000 users' home pages and discovered it was able to influence the way users felt via ''emotional contagion.''
In their study, conducted with academics from Cornell University and the University of California, Facebook altered the levels of positive and negative ''emotional content.''
This approach subtly changed users' views so they found themselves posting more positive or negative content, depending on levels of exposure.
Activists criticized these social experiments as ''scandalous,''''spooky''and''disturbing.''
5/22/2015 '-- Whole West coast moved over 48 hours '-- Oregon Earthquake near Erupting Volcano | Dutchsinse
Sat, 23 May 2015 08:40
Over the past 48 hours the whole of the West coast of the United States has moved on at least a 4.0 magnitude level or greater.
Currently, another mid-4.0 magnitude (4.2 M) earthquake has struck the West coast, off the shores of Oregon, near the Axial undersea volcano (which is currently erupting).
This is a huge development to see, please pay close attention to the regional seismic activity over the next week (currently May 22 2015).
_______
This new West coast earthquake activity is expected, but unwelcome.
See the earthquake forecast for the West coast of the United States here (issued May 21 2015):
________
This new West coast earthquake unrest began with a 4.2M at the border of Alaska and British Colombia Canada (as expected).
The Alaska activity was shortly followed by a new swarm of earthquakes at the Salton Sea Volcanic buttes (located in Southern California).
The Southern California volcanic earthquake swarm was shortly followed by a 4.1M event in Napa Vallay / Gorda Escarpment zone near San Francisco, CA.
All the aforementioned activity has now been followed by a 4.2 magnitude earthquake off the shores of Oregon. These events all point towards Vancouver Island BC as a ''silent zone'' to watch, along with Washington State.
Worthy to note, this Oregon earthquake occurred very close to the location of a new underwater volcano which was detected along the Axial Seamount, which is located due West of the Oregon Coast.
Also, keep in mind the oil pipeline rupture along the West coast of California near Los Angeles, and the flurry of dormant volcanoes which have shown movement along the states of California, Oregon, and Washington state'.... all these events signs of building pressure in the region.
Worthy to note the large steam plume event which occurred across the state of Nevada for the past 3 days. Captured by tatoott1009, seen in this video here:
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Information on the Oregon 4.2 magnitude earthquake from the USGS:
Magnitude / uncertainty4.2 mb± 0.1Location / uncertainty43.470°N 127.052°W± 5.7 kmDepth / uncertainty10.0 km± 2.0Origin Time2015-05-22 07:40:46.480 UTCNumber of Stations''Number of Phases98Minimum Distance230.99 km (2.08°)Travel Time Residual1.05 secAzimuthal Gap176°FE RegionOff the coast of Oregon (30)_______
After a flurry of West coast earthquake activity yesterday going into this morning (May 22), now an extremely rare 5.4M earthquake has struck South Nevada.
Additionally, a new swarm of earthquakes is now developing at the South Nevada epicenter.
The location in Nevada appears to be an ancient dormant volcanic butte. The nearby dormant volcano is surely the culprit for this 5.4M earthquake today.
Search the coordinates, then look at the cliff sides to the East of the epicenter, you will see the old basalt flows, and the higher dome of the butte.
37.296°N 114.703°W
If you search the coordinates you will also come to find that there is an abandoned Copper mine (''Cherokee Copper mine'') located VERY close to the earthquake epicenter.
_______
A west coast earthquake watch was issued yesterday. We have been watching the multiple dormant volcanoes show movement in the region, this 5.4 magnitude in Nevada.
Over the past week, the Markagunt volcanic plateau moved in South Utah, and now this dormant volcanic butte (unnamed) shows activity in South Nevada.
See the full forecast here:
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Magnitude5.4 mlLocation37.296°N 114.703°WDepth19.4 kmOrigin Time2015-05-22 18:47:43.020 UTCNumber of Stations36Number of Phases35Minimum Distance38.07 km (0.34°)Travel Time Residual''Azimuthal Gap233.29°FE RegionNevada (41)_______
Nobody In The News Knows How Arabic Names Work | The Daily Caller
Sat, 23 May 2015 08:12
4578362
Print, broadcast and Internet news have all had a bad week for identifying Arabs by name.
Gawker.com's Sam Biddle published an article Thursday entitled ''Jihad Me at Hello: Tinder Flirting With Osama bin Laden's Love Letters.'' It uses excerpts from a recently declassified letter, written from a terrorist to his faraway wife, to try to pick up women using the smartphone app Tinder.
It's not bad as love letters go '-- it calls the recipient ''the apple of my eye, and the most precious thing that I have in this world.'' It also contains explicit instructions for his will in the case of his death. (RELATED: Here's An Al-Qaida Job Application)
The problem: That letter isn't from Osama bin Laden.
In the letter's official English transcript, released by the Director of National Intelligence Wednesday, its author signs the letter ''Sa'ad Ibn `Usama Bin Ladin, 15 August 2008.''
That is, the lovesick jihadi is 29-year-old Saad, Osama bin Laden's son. This should be obvious not just to fluent Arabic speakers, but anyone who knows ''ibn'' is a word meaning ''son of'' that Arab men use in their names to honor their fathers.
Journalists writing about terrorism generally can understand the name of the person who signs a letter, and not confuse him with the most infamous terrorist in modern history.
The letter was released alongside other physical and digital records found in the Pakistani compound where Navy SEALs killed Osama bin Laden in 2011. The ''Bin Ladin's Bookshelf'' release includes hundreds of files, comprising direct communications from the al-Qaida leader, summaries of longer documents, and other relevant files. (RELATED: Bin Laden's Secret Stash Included 9/11 Truthers, Delta Force Video Game)
Gawker isn't the only outlet that made this basic error. Vox.com and Business Insider both corrected their original articles and headlines, the former only after The Daily Caller News Foundation repeatedly highlighted Vox's error.
The Wall Street Journal's liveblog of the release quoted a later section of the letter as Osama bin Laden ''ask[ing] his father to take care of his family,'' even though Osama's father Mohammed died in 1967. USA Today and Britain's The Independent and The Guardian also retain the claim, uncorrected.
The mix-up over Saad bin Laden wasn't the only recent failure to provide a basic understanding of Arabic. After special forces killed an Islamic State operative last weekend named ''Abu Sayyaf,'' outlets including CNN, The New York Times and the Washington Post all misrepresented the jihadi's nickname.
''Abu Sayyaf'' is a single name, called a kunya in Arabic. ''Abu'' here means ''father of,'' and Sayyaf is a male name that means ''swordsman.'' Arabic speakers use kunyas as a respectful name referring to one's children: Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas is sometimes called Abu Mazen, for example, after his firstborn son, Mazen. (RELATED: Who Was 'Abu Sayyaf,' Last Weekend's ISIS Kill?)
Some terrorists also use kunyas as symbolic nicknames to raised their credibility as warriors. The female equivalent is ''Umm,'' meaning ''mother of.''
Individually, ''Abu'' and ''Sayyaf'' are not names that make sense. But The New York Times' original article on the raid called the terrorist ''Mr. Sayyaf,'' as though Sayyaf were his last name. The Times issued a correction after TheDCNF pointed out the error.
The mistake recalls an error in January, in which The New York Times seemed to invent a new country called ''Kyrzbekistan.'' The Washington Post also flubbed the practice in its report, saying that his wife's name ''Umm Sayyaf'' means ''wife of Sayyaf.''
The Department of State's Jeff Rathke on Monday failed to recognize that ''Umm'' is a common prefix rather than a unique first name.
And CNN also apparently treated ''Umm'' as a first name in its international coverage of the raid.
TheDCNF can confirm that ''AKHHH,'' as tweeted by Agence France-Presse's Beirut correspondent Maya Gebeily, is not only the Arabic word for ''brother,'' but also a universal noise expressing frustration.
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Federal Register | Wassenaar Arrangement 2013 Plenary Agreements Implementation: Intrusion and Surveillance Items
Sat, 23 May 2015 08:10
Submit comments on or before July 20, 2015.
Comments on this rule may be submitted to the Federal rulemaking portal (www.regulations.gov). The regulations.gov ID for this rule is: BIS-2015-0011. Comments may also be submitted via email to publiccomments@bis.doc.gov or on paper to Regulatory Policy Division, Bureau of Industry and Security, Room 2099B, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th St. and Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20230. Please refer to RIN 0694-AG49 in all comments and in the subject line of email comments.
Catherine Wheeler, Director, Information Technology Control Division, Phone: (202) 482-0707 or by email at Catherine.Wheeler@bis.doc.gov.
The Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies is a group of 41 like-minded states committed to promoting responsibility and transparency in the global arms trade, and preventing destabilizing accumulations of arms. As a Participating State, the United States has committed to controlling for export all items on the WA control lists. The lists were first established in 1996 and have been revised annually thereafter. Proposals for changes to the WA control lists that achieve consensus are approved by Participating States at annual December Plenary meetings. Participating States are charged with implementing the agreed list changes as soon as possible after approval. Implementation of WA list changes ensures U.S. companies have a level playing field with their competitors in other WA member states.
In 2013, WA agreed to add the following to their list of dual-use goods: systems, equipment or components specially designed for the generation, operation or delivery of, or communication with, intrusion software; software specially designed or modified for the development or production of such systems, equipment or components; software specially designed for the generation, operation or delivery of, or communication with, intrusion software; technology required for the development of intrusion software; Internet Protocol (IP) network communications surveillance systems or equipment and test, inspection, production equipment, specially designed components therefor, and development and production software and technology therefor. BIS, the Departments of Defense and State, as well as other agencies have been discussing the best way to add these items, which we have named ''cybersecurity items,'' to the Commerce Control List (CCL) (Supplement No. 1 to part 774 of the Export Administration Regulations) without reducing encryption controls and while balancing the national security and foreign policy. For resource planning purposes, as well as license requirements, license exceptions, license submission requirements, and internal license reviews and processing planning purposes, this rule is published as a proposed rule.
Systems, equipment, components and software specially designed for the generation, operation or delivery of, or communication with, intrusion software include network penetration testing products that use intrusion software to identify vulnerabilities of computers and network-capable devices. Certain penetration testing products are currently classified as encryption items due to their cryptographic and/or cryptanalytic functionality. Technology for the development of intrusion software includes proprietary research on the vulnerabilities and exploitation of computers and network-capable devices. The new entry on the CCL that would control Internet Protocol (IP) network communications surveillance systems or equipment is restricted to products that perform all of the functions listed; however, the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) also prohibits the export of equipment if the exporter intends it will be combined with other equipment to comprise a system described in the new entry.
Addition of ECCNs 4A005 and 4D004 to the Commerce Control List Back to TopThis rule proposes to add Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) 4A005 (''systems,'' ''equipment,'' or ''components'' therefor, ''specially designed'' for the generation, operation or delivery of, or communication with, ''intrusion software'') and ECCN 4D004 (''software'' ''specially designed'' for the generation, operation or delivery of, or communication with, ''intrusion software'') to the CCL. These ECCNs are proposed to be controlled for national security (NS), regional stability (RS), and anti-terrorism (AT) reasons to all destinations, except Canada. No license exceptions would be available for these items, except certain provisions of License Exception GOV, e.g., exports to or on behalf of the United States Government pursuant to § 740.11(b) of the EAR. This rule also proposes adding a License Requirement Note and a Note in the Related Controls paragraph for these ECCNs, to alert exporters to include all relevant information when submitting classification requests and licensing applications.
This rule also proposes to amend ECCN 4D001 by adding ECCN 4A005 to Items paragraph 4D001.a in order to add control of ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''development'' or ''production,'' of equipment controlled by 4A005; adding an RS:1 license requirement paragraph for 4D001.a (as it applies to 4A005 or 4D004), removing License Exceptions TSR and STA eligibility; and adding the same explanatory License Requirement Note and Related Controls Note that would be added to ECCNs 4A005 and 4D004.
As a technical correction, this rule proposes to remove from the ''Reason for control'' paragraph ''NP,'' and from the License Requirement section the two sentences, ''NP applies, unless a license exception is available. See § 742.3(b) of the EAR for information on applicable licensing review policies.'' That text does not articulate any license requirement, and no nuclear non-proliferation license requirement for software classified as 4D001 is set forth elsewhere in the EAR. BIS's regular practice is to impose a license requirement for nuclear non-proliferation reasons on items that are specified on the ''List of Nuclear-Related Dual-Use Equipment, Materials, Software, and Related Technology'' by the Nuclear Suppliers Group. ECCN 4D001 software is not so specified.
This rule also proposes to amend ECCN 4E001 by adding a new Items paragraph 4E001.c to control ''technology'' ''required'' for the ''development'' of ''intrusion software.'' ECCN 4E001.a controls ''''technology'' according to the General Technology Note, for the ''development,'' ''production,'' or ''use'' of equipment or ''software'' controlled by 4A (except 4A980 or 4A994) or 4D (except 4D980, 4D993 or 4D994).'' Therefore, ECCN 4E001.a would control ''technology'' for the newly added 4A005 and 4D004, as well as 4D001.a (for 4A005 and 4D004). This rule also proposes to add an RS:1 license requirement paragraph for 4E001.a ''technology'' (as it applies to 4A005, 4D001.a (as it applies to 4A005 or 4D004) or 4D004) and 4E001.c, which would require a license to export, reexport, and transfer (in-country) to all destinations, except Canada. BIS also proposes to remove License Exception Technology and Software Under Restriction (TSR) and Strategic Trade Authorization (STA) eligibility and add the same explanatory License Requirement Note and Related Controls Note added to ECCNs 4A005, 4D001 and 4D004. Also, a reference to § 772.1 is proposed to be added to ECCNs 4A005, 4D001 and 4E001 to point to the location of the ''intrusion software'' definition, as this rule may be of interest to many new exporters that would not otherwise know that double quoted terms in the EAR are defined in § 772.1.
Lastly, the same technical correction regarding the Nuclear Non-proliferation (NP) control is proposed for 4E001 as is proposed for 4D001, see explanation above.
ECCN 5A001.j: Internet Protocol (IP) Network Communications Surveillance Systems or Equipment and Test, Inspection, Production Equipment, Specially Designed Components Therefor Back to TopNetwork communication traffic analysis systems are becoming an increasingly sensitive issue, which is why WA agreed to add the control of these items to the WA dual-use list. These systems are using the process of intercepting and analyzing messages to produce personal, human and social information from the communications traffic. BIS proposes to add these items in paragraph 5A001.j and group them with cybersecurity items. The license requirements for these items are proposed to under NS Column 1, RS Column 1 and AT Column 1 on the Commerce Country Chart (Supplement No. 1 to part 738 of the EAR) and would require a license for export, reexport, and transfer (in-country) to all destinations, except Canada. Only certain provisions of License Exception GOV, e.g., exports to or on behalf of the United States Government pursuant to § 740.11(b) of the EAR, would be available for these items.
The same addition of a License Requirement Note and Related Control Note is proposed for ECCNs 5A001, 5D001, and 5E001 as is proposed for ECCNs 4A005, 4D001, 4D004 and 4E001 (see explanation under 4A005 and 4D005 above).
BIS proposes to remove cybersecurity software from the mass market provision of License Exception TSU eligibility by adding a new paragraph (d)(2)(ii). This is consistent with the existing encryption exclusion.
Cybersecurity Items That Are Designed or Modified To Use ''Cryptography'' or Cryptanalysis Back to TopAs previously introduced and explained in the preamble, this rule proposes to add a Related Control note to ECCNs 4A005, 4D004, 4E001, 5A001, 5A002, 5D002 and 5E002 that states that cybersecurity items are classified in cybersecurity ECCNs, even if the items are designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis; however, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD. This note is added so that people will not be confused under which ECCN to classify their products and when a cybersecurity item is designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis, after the relevant Encryption Items (EI) requirements for registration and review have been separately satisfied. One effect this will have is that these cybersecurity items will not be eligible for License Exception ENC. However, BIS anticipates licensing broad authorizations to certain types of end users and destinations that will counterbalance the loss of the use of License Exception ENC.
Information To Be Submitted With a License Application To Export, Reexport, or Transfer (In-Country) Cybersecurity Items Back to TopIn addition to the general information required by § 748.3(b) of the EAR and the requirement that all encryption registration and review provisions must be separately satisfied with BIS and the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD, this rule proposes to add a requirement to submit specific technical information in support of applications to export, reexport, or transfer (in-country) cybersecurity items. The specified technical information is set forth in newly added paragraph (z) of Supplement No. 2 to part 748 ''Unique application and submission requirements.'' The Commodity Classification Application Tracking System (CCATS) number(s) or license number(s) for the cyber security item(s) must be included in the license application. If no classification or license application has been done for the cybersecurity item, then the answers to three (3) questions are to be submitted in a letter of explanation.
Also, this rule proposes that upon request from BIS, the applicant must include a copy of the sections of source code and other software (e.g., libraries and header files) that implement or invoke the controlled cybersecurity functionality.
License Review Policy for Cybersecurity Items Back to TopThe license review policies for cybersecurity items controlled under NS and AT will not be revised. A new license review policy for cybersecurity items is proposed under § 742.6(b) for regional stability. Cybersecurity items controlled for RS are proposed to be reviewed favorably if destined to a U.S. company or subsidiary not located in Country Group D:1 or E:1, foreign commercial partners located in Country Group A:5, government end users in Australia, Canada, New Zealand or the United Kingdom, and on a case-by-case basis to determine whether the transaction is contrary to the national security or foreign policy interests of the United States, including the foreign policy interest of promoting the observance of human rights throughout the world. Note that there is a policy of presumptive denial for items that have or support rootkit or zero-day exploit capabilities. The governments of Australia, Canada, New Zealand or the United Kingdom have partnered with the United States on cybersecurity policy and issues, which affords these countries with favorable treatment for license applications. A note that describes ''foreign commercial partner'' is proposed to be added to § 742.6(b). Any ''information security'' functionality incorporated in the cybersecurity item will also receive a focused case-by-case review for reasons of Encryption Items (EI) control.
§ 772.1Definitions of Terms as Used in the EAR: Addition of Definition for ''Intrusion Software'' Back to TopThe WA-agreed definition for ''intrusion software'' is proposed to be added to § 772.1 of the EAR. The definition also includes a Note that describes some items not included as ''intrusion software,''e.g., hypervisors, debuggers or Software Reverse Engineering (SRE).
BIS is seeking information about the effect of this rule and would appreciate the submission of comments, and especially answers to the following questions:
1. How many additional license applications would your company be required to submit per year under the requirements of this proposed rule? If any, of those applications:
a. How many additional applications would be for products that are currently eligible for license exceptions?
b. How many additional applications would be for products that currently are classified EAR99?
2. How many deemed export, reexport or transfer (in-country) license applications would your company be required to submit per year under the requirements of this rule?
3. Would the rule have negative effects on your legitimate vulnerability research, audits, testing or screening and your company's ability to protect your own or your client's networks? If so, explain how.
4. How long would it take you to answer the questions in proposed paragraph (z) to Supplement No. 2 to part 748? Is this information you already have for your products?
* The ADDRESSES section of this proposed rule includes information about how to submit comments.
1. Executive Orders 13563 and 12866 direct agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. This rule has been designated a ''significant regulatory action,'' under Executive Order 12866.
2. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with a collection of information subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501et seq.) (PRA), unless that collection of information displays a currently valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Control Number. This rule would involve one collection of information subject to the PRA. One of the collections has been approved by OMB under control number 0694-0088, ''Multi-Purpose Application,'' and carries a burden hour estimate of 58 minutes for a manual or electronic submission. The additional information proposed to be required under Supplement No. 2 to part 748 paragraph (z) falls under the usual technical information that is submitted with applications to describe the abilities of the items on the license application. This information allows the licensing officer to verify the classification of the product and determine the effect it would have on U.S. national security and foreign policy. Send comments regarding these burden estimates or any other aspect of these collections of information, including suggestions for reducing the burden, to OMB Desk Officer, New Executive Office Building, Washington, DC 20503; and to Jasmeet Seehra, OMB Desk Officer, by email at Jasmeet_K._Seehra@omb.eop.gov or by fax to (202) 395-7285; and to the Office of Administration, Bureau of Industry and Security, Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Ave. NW., Room 6622, Washington, DC 20230.
3. This rule does not contain policies with Federalism implications as that term is defined under Executive Order 13132.
4. The provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) (5 U.S.C. 553) requiring notice of proposed rulemaking, the opportunity for public participation, and a 30-day delay in effective date, are inapplicable because this regulation involves a military and foreign affairs function of the United States (5 U.S.C. 553(a)(1)). Nonetheless, BIS is providing the public with an opportunity to review and comment on this rule, despite its being exempted from that requirement of the APA. Because this rule is not required by the APA to undergo a period of notice and comment, the requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601et seq., do not apply. Accordingly, no regulatory flexibility analysis is required, and none has been prepared.
BIS is interested in the potential impacts to businesses of this rule. Because most of the items impacted by this rule have encryption capabilities, BIS believes they are already being controlled under Category 5 part 2 of the EAR. Even though most encryption items are eligible for License Exception ENC and these cybersecurity items will not be eligible for License Exception ENC, BIS anticipates issuing broad licenses for these items. The impact of this rule is unknown to BIS, therefore the implementation of the Wassenaar Arrangement agreement of 2013 with regard to cybersecurity items is issued as a proposed rule with request for comments concerning the impact of the rule. Comments should be submitted to Sharron Cook, Office of Exporter Services, Bureau of Industry and Security, Department of Commerce, 14th and Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Room 2099, Washington, DC 20230 or emailed to publiccomments@bis.doc.gov. Please refer to RIN 0694-AG49 in all comments and in the subject line of email comments.
Accordingly, parts 740, 742, 748, 772, and 774 of the Export Administration Regulations (15 CFR parts 730 through 774) are proposed to be amended as follows:
begin regulatory text
1.The authority citation for part 740 continues to read as follows:
Authority:50 U.S.C. app. 2401 et seq.;50 U.S.C. 1701et seq.;22 U.S.C. 7201et seq.;E.O. 13026,61 FR 58767, 3 CFR, 1996 Comp., p. 228; E.O. 13222,66 FR 44025, 3 CFR, 2001 Comp., p. 783; Notice of August 7, 2014, 79 FR 46959 (August 11, 2014).
2.Section 740.2 is amended by adding paragraph (a)(19) to read as follows:
§ 740.2 Restrictions on all License Exceptions.(a) * * *
(19) The item is a cybersecurity item, i.e., those controlled by ECCNs 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items), 4D004, 4E001.a (''required'' for 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) or 4D004 items), 4E001.c, 5A001.j, 5B001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j items), 5D001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j items), 5D001.c (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) or 5E001.a (''required'' for 5A001.j, 5B001.a, 5D001.a (for 5A001.j items) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) and the export, reexport or transfer (in-country) is not authorized by § 740.11(b)(2)(ii) (made by or consigned to a department or agency of the U.S. government), or § 740.11(b)(2)(iii) (made for or on behalf of a department or agency of the U.S. Government).
* * * * *
3.Section 740.11 is amended by:
a. Adding paragraph (a)(2)(vi);
b. Removing the ''or'' from the end of paragraph (c)(3)(vi);
c. Removing the period from paragraph (c)(3)(vii) and adding a semicolon in its place; and
d. Adding paragraph (c)(3)(viii).
end regulatory text
The revisions and addition read as follows:
begin regulatory text
§ 740.11 Governments, international organizations, international inspections under the Chemical Weapons Convention, and the International Space Station (GOV).(a) * * *
(2) * * *
(vi) Cybersecurity items, i.e., those controlled by ECCNs 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items), 4D004, 4E001.a (''required'' for 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) or 4D004 items), 4E001.c, 5A001.j, 5B001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j items), 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items), 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) or 5E001.a (''required'' for 5A001.j, 5B001.a, 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items).
* * * * *
(c) * * *
(3) * * *
(viii) Cybersecurity items, i.e., those controlled by ECCNs 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items), 4D004, 4E001.a (''required'' for 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) or 4D004 items), 4E001.c, 5A001.j, 5B001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j items), 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items), 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) or 5E001.a (''required'' for 5A001.j, 5B001.a, 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a) items).
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4.Section 740.13 is amended by revising the section heading and paragraph (d)(2) to read as follows:
§ 740.13 Technology and Software'--Unrestricted (TSU).* * * * *
(d) * * *
(2) Exclusions'--(i) Encryption software. The provisions of this paragraph (d) are not available for encryption software controlled for ''EI'' reasons under ECCN 5D002 or for encryption software with symmetric key length exceeding 64-bits that qualifies as mass market encryption software under the criteria in the Cryptography Note (Note 3) of Category 5, Part 2, of the Commerce Control List (Supplement No. 1 to part 774 of the EAR). (Once such mass market encryption software has been reviewed by BIS and released from ''EI'' and ''NS'' controls pursuant to § 742.15(b) of the EAR, it is controlled under ECCN 5D992.c and is thus outside the scope of License Exception TSU.) See § 742.15(b) of the EAR for exports and reexports of mass market encryption products controlled under ECCN 5D992.c.
(ii) Cybersecurity software. The provisions of this paragraph (d) are not available for cybersecurity ''software'' that is classified under ECCNs 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items), 4D004, or for ''software'' under ECCN 5D001.a or .c (''specially designed'' for ''production,'' ''development'' or ''use'' of 5A001.j equipment or systems, or providing the characteristics, functions or features of 5A001.j or 5B001.a equipment or systems).
* * * * *
5.Section 740.17 is amended by revising paragraph (b)(3)(iii) introductory text to read as follows:
§ 740.17 Encryption commodities, software and technology (ENC).* * * * *
(b) * * *
(3) * * *
(iii) Encryption commodities and software not described by paragraph (b)(2) of this section, and not further controlled for NS and RS reasons under ECCNs 5A001.j, 5B001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j), 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a), that provide or perform vulnerability analysis, network forensics, or computer forensics functions characterized by any of the following:
* * * * *
6.Section 740.20 is amended by adding paragraph (b)(2)(ix) to read as follows:
§ 740.20 License Exception Strategic Trade Authorization (STA).* * * * *
(b) * * *
(2) * * *
(ix) License Exception STA may not be used for any cybersecurity items, i.e., those controlled by ECCNs 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items), 4D004, 4E001.a (''required'' for 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items) or 4D004 items), 4E001.c, 5A001.j, 5B001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j items), 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items), 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) or 5E001.a (''required'' for 5A001.j, 5B001.a, 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) items).
* * * * *
7.The authority citation for part 742 continues to read as follows:
Authority:50 U.S.C. app. 2401 et seq.;50 U.S.C. 1701et seq.;22 U.S.C. 3201et seq.;42 U.S.C. 2139a; 22 U.S.C. 7201et seq.;22 U.S.C. 7210; Sec. 1503, Pub. L. 108-11, 117 Stat. 559; E.O. 12058, 43 FR 20947, 3 CFR, 1978 Comp., p. 179; E.O. 12851, 58 FR 33181, 3 CFR, 1993 Comp., p. 608; E.O. 12938, 59 FR 59099, 3 CFR, 1994 Comp., p. 950; E.O. 13026,61 FR 58767, 3 CFR, 1996 Comp., p. 228; E.O. 13222,66 FR 44025, 3 CFR, 2001 Comp., p. 783; Presidential Determination 2003-23 of May 7, 2003, 68 FR 26459, May 16, 2003; Notice of August 7, 2014, 79 FR 46959 (August 11, 2014); Notice of November 7, 2014, 79 FR 67035 (November 12, 2014).
8.Section 742.6 is amended by adding paragraph (b)(5) to read as follows:
§ 742.6 Regional stability.* * * * *
(b) * * *
(5) Licensing policy for cybersecurity items. Applications for exports, reexports and transfers of cybersecurity items, i.e., those controlled by ECCNs 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items), 4D004, 4E001.a (''required'' for 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items) or 4D004 items), 4E001.c, 5A001.j, 5B001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j items), 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items), 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) or 5E001.a (''required'' for 5A001.j, 5B001.a, 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) items), controlled for RS will be reviewed favorably if destined to a U.S. company or subsidiary not located in Country Group D:1 or E:1, `foreign commercial partners' located in Country Group A:5, Government end users in Australia, Canada, New Zealand or United Kingdom and on a case-by-case basis to determine whether the transaction is contrary to the national security or foreign policy interests of the United States, including the foreign policy interest of promoting the observance of human rights throughout the world, except that there is a policy of presumptive denial for items that have or support rootkit or zero-day exploit capabilities. Any ''information security'' functionality incorporated in the cybersecurity item will also receive a focused case-by-case review for reasons of Encryption Items (EI) control.
Note to paragraph (b)(5): A `foreign commercial partner' means a foreign-based non-governmental end-user that has a business need to share the proprietary information of the U.S. company and is contractually bound to the U.S. company (e.g., has an established pattern of continuing or recurring contractual relations). In addition to the information required in § 748.3(c)(1), (c)(2) and paragraph (z) of Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of the EAR, you must explain in a letter of explanation how the end user meets the criteria of a `foreign commercial partner' and how the end user will safeguard the items from unauthorized transfers (in-country) and reexports.
* * * * *
9.The authority citation for part 748 continues to read as follows:
Authority:50 U.S.C. app. 2401 et seq.;50 U.S.C. 1701et seq.;E.O. 13026,61 FR 58767, 3 CFR, 1996 Comp., p. 228; E.O. 13222,66 FR 44025, 3 CFR, 2001 Comp., p. 783; Notice of August 7, 2014, 79 FR 46959 (August 11, 2014).
10.Section 748.8 is amended by adding paragraph (z) to read as follows:
§ 748.8 Unique application and submission requirements.* * * * *
(z) Cybersecurity Items.
11.Supplement No. 2 is amended by adding paragraph (z) to read as follows:
Supplement No. 2 to Part 748'--Unique Application and Submission Requirements Back to Topend regulatory text
begin regulatory text
(z) Cybersecurity items. For license applications to export, reexport, transfer (in-country) cybersecurity items, i.e., ECCNs 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004 items), 4D004, 4E001.a (''required'' for 4A005, 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) or 4D004 items), 4E001.c, 5A001.j, 5B001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.j items), 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items), 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) or 5E001.a (''required'' for 5A001.j, 5B001.a, 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j items) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a items) items) you must follow the unique application requirements set forth in this paragraph (z). If the cybersecurity item has encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, all encryption registration and review requirements must be separately completed with BIS and the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD, before license applications for a cybersecurity item will be considered, see §§ 740.17 and 742.15 of the EAR.
(1) In block 9 of the application (Special Purpose) indicate the phrase ''Cybersecurity Item.'' In addition to the information required by § 748.3(b) of the EAR, submit the following information in a letter of explanation:
(i) Whether the cybersecurity item has encryption or other ''information security'' functionality, Encryption Registration Number (ERN) and encryption Commodity Classification Application Tracking System (CCATS) number(s);
(ii) Whether the cybersecurity item has been previously classified or included in a license application submitted on or after May 20, 2015 for which all requirements of this section (including the questions set forth in paragraph (z)(1)(iii) of this section) have been satisfied. If so, then provide the Commodity Classification Automated Tracking System (CCATS) number(s) or issued license number(s).
(iii) If the cybersecurity item has not been previously classified or included in a license application, then:
(A) Describe the cybersecurity functions and user interfaces (e.g., Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), Command Line Interfaces (CLIs) or Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs)) that are implemented and/or supported. Explain which are for internal use private to the developer of the product, and/or which are for use by the customer or other operator.
(B) Describe the cybersecurity functionality (including as related to ''intrusion software'') that is provided by third-party frameworks, platforms, tools, modules or components (if any). Identify the manufacturers of the cybersecurity items, including specific part numbers and version information as needed to describe the item. As applicable, describe whether the third-party cybersecurity software is statically or dynamically linked.
(C) For items related to ''intrusion software,'' describe how rootkit or zero-day exploit functionality is precluded from the item. Otherwise, for items that incorporate or otherwise support rootkit or zero-day exploit functionality, this must be explicitly stated in the application.
(2) Upon request, include a copy of the sections of source code and other software (e.g., libraries and header files) that implement or invoke the controlled cybersecurity functionality.
12.The authority citation for part 772 continues to read as follows:
Authority:50 U.S.C. app. 2401 et seq.;50 U.S.C. 1701et seq.;E.O. 13222,66 FR 44025, 3 CFR, 2001 Comp., p. 783; Notice of August 7, 2014, 79 FR 46959 (August 11, 2014).
13.Section 772.1 is amended by adding the term ''Intrusion software'' in alphabetic order to read as follows:
§ 772.1 Definitions of terms as used in the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).* * * * *
Intrusion software. (Cat 4) ''Software'' ''specially designed'' or modified to avoid detection by `monitoring tools,' or to defeat `protective countermeasures,' of a computer or network-capable device, and performing any of the following:
(a) The extraction of data or information, from a computer or network-capable device, or the modification of system or user data; or
(b) The modification of the standard execution path of a program or process in order to allow the execution of externally provided instructions.
Notes: 1. ''Intrusion software'' does not include any of the following:
a. Hypervisors, debuggers or Software Reverse Engineering (SRE) tools;
b. Digital Rights Management (DRM) ''software''; or
c. ''Software'' designed to be installed by manufacturers, administrators or users, for the purposes of asset tracking or recovery.
2. Network-capable devices include mobile devices and smart meters.
Technical Notes: 1. `Monitoring tools': ''software'' or hardware devices, that monitor system behaviors or processes running on a device. This includes antivirus (AV) products, end point security products, Personal Security Products (PSP), Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS) or firewalls.
2. `Protective countermeasures': techniques designed to ensure the safe execution of code, such as Data Execution Prevention (DEP), Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR) or sandboxing.
* * * * *
14.The authority citation for part 774 continues to read as follows:
Authority:50 U.S.C. app. 2401 et seq.;50 U.S.C. 1701et seq.;10 U.S.C. 7420; 10 U.S.C. 7430(e); 22 U.S.C. 287c, 22 U.S.C. 3201et seq.;22 U.S.C. 6004; 30 U.S.C. 185(s), 185(u); 42 U.S.C. 2139a; 42 U.S.C. 6212; 43 U.S.C. 1354; 15 U.S.C. 1824a; 50 U.S.C. app. 5; 22 U.S.C. 7201 et seq.;22 U.S.C. 7210; E.O. 13026,61 FR 58767, 3 CFR, 1996 Comp., p. 228; E.O. 13222,66 FR 44025, 3 CFR, 2001 Comp., p. 783; Notice of August 7, 2014, 79 FR 46959 (August 11, 2014).
Supplement No. 1 to Part 774'--[Amended] Back to Top15.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 4 is amended by adding ECCN 4A005 after ECCN 4A004 to read as follows:
Supplement No. 1 to Part 774'--The Commerce Control List Back to Top* * * * *
4A005 ''Systems,'' ''equipment,'' or ''components'' therefor, ''specially designed'' or modified for the generation, operation or delivery of, or communication with, ''intrusion software''.
Reason for Control: NS, RS, AT
Control(s)Country chart(see supp. No. 1 to part 738)NS applies to entire entryNS Column 1RS applies to the entire entryRS Column 1AT applies to entire entryAT Column 1License Requirement Note:All license applications for 4A005 must include the information required in Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of the EAR, paragraph (z). Also, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD prior to applying for a license.
List Based License Exceptions (See Part 740 for a Description of All License Exceptions) Back to TopLVS: N/A
GBS: N/A
CIV: N/A
Special Conditions for STA Back to TopSTA: License Exception STA may not be used to export, reexport, or transfer (in-country) commodities controlled by ECCN 4A005 to any destination.
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls: (1) ''Systems'', ''equipment'' and ''components'' described under ECCN 4A005 are classified under this ECCN, even if the ''systems'', ''equipment'' or ''components'' are designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis. (2) See Categories XI(b) and XIII in the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) (22 CFR parts 120 through 130) and the U.S. Munitions List (22 CFR part 121). (3) See also ECCN 4D001.a (''development'' and ''production'' ''software''), 4D004 and 4E001.a and .c.
Related Definitions: See § 772.1 of this EAR for the definition of ''intrusion software.''
Items: The list of items controlled is contained in the ECCN heading.
16.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 4, ECCN 4D001 is amended by:
a. Revising the Reason for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section;
b. Adding an entry for ''RS'' after the entry for ''NS'' in the table in the License Requirements section;
c. Removing the NP note after the table in the License Requirements section and adding in its place a License Requirement Note;
d. Revising the TSR paragraph in the List Based License Exceptions section;
e. Revising the Special Conditions for STA section;
f. Revising the Related Controls paragraph in the List of Items Controlled section;
g. Revising Items paragraph a.
end regulatory text
The revisions and addition read as follows:
begin regulatory text
4D001''Software'' as follows (see List of Items Controlled).
Reason for Control: NS, RS, CC, AT
Control(s)Country chart(see supp. No. 1 to part 738)***** RS applies to 4D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004)RS Column 1***** License Requirement Note:All license applications for 4D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) must include the information required in Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of the EAR, paragraph (z). Also, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD prior to applying for a license.
* * * * *
List Based License Exceptions (See Part 740 for a Description of All License Exceptions) Back to Top* * * * *
TSR: Yes, except for: (1) ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''development'' or ''production'' of commodities with an ''Adjusted Peak Performance'' (''APP'') exceeding 1.0 WT; or (2) ''software'' if ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''development'' or ''production'' of commodities or ''software'' specified by ECCNs 4A005 or 4D004.
* * * * *
Special Conditions for STA Back to TopSTA: License Exception STA may not be used to: (1) Ship or transmit ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''development'' or ''production'' of equipment specified by ECCN 4A001.a.2 or for the ''development'' or ''production'' of ''digital computers'' having an `Adjusted Peak Performance' (`APP') exceeding 1.0 Weighted TeraFLOPS (WT) to any of the destinations listed in Country Group A:6 (See Supplement No.1 to part 740 of the EAR); or (2) ship or transmit ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''production'' or ''development'' of commodities or ''software'' specified by ECCNs 4A005 or 4D004, to any destination.
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls: (1) ''Software'' described under ECCN 4D001 (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) is classified under this ECCN, even if the ''software'' is designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis. (2) See also the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) (22 CFR parts 120 through 130) and the U.S. Munitions List (22 CFR part 121).
* * * * *
Items: a. ''Software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''development'' or ''production'', of equipment controlled by 4A001, 4A003, 4A004, 4A005 or ''software'' controlled by 4D (except 4D980, 4D993 or 4D994).
* * * * *
17.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 4 is amended by adding ECCN 4D004 after ECCN 4D002 to read as follows:
4D004''Software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for the generation, operation or delivery of, or communication with, ''intrusion software''.
Reason for Control: NS, RS, AT
Control(s)Country chart(see supp. No.1 to part 738)NS applies to entire entryNS Column 1RS applies to entire entryRS Column 1AT applies to entire entryAT Column 1License Requirement Note:All license applications for 4D004 must include the information required in Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of this EAR, paragraph (z). Also, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD prior to applying for a license.
List Based License Exceptions (See Part 740 for a Description of All License Exceptions) Back to TopCIV: N/A
TSR: N/A
Special Conditions for STA Back to TopSTA: License Exception STA may not be used to export, reexport, or transfer (in-country) ''software'' controlled by ECCN 4D004 to any destination.
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls: (1) ''Software'' described under ECCN 4D004 is classified under this ECCN, even if the ''software'' is designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis. (2) See also the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) (22 CFR parts 120 through 130) and the U.S. Munitions List (22 CFR part 121). (3) See also ECCN 4E001.a.
Related Definitions: See § 772.1 of the EAR for the definition of ''intrusion software.''
Items: The list of items controlled is contained in the ECCN heading.
18.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 4, ECCN 4E001 is amended by:
a. Revising the Reasons for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section;
b. Adding an entry for ''RS'' after the entry for ''MT'' in the table in the License Requirements section;
c. Removing the NP note after the table in the License Requirements section and adding in its place a License Requirement Note;
d. Revising the TSR paragraph in the List Based License Exceptions section;
e. Revising the Special Conditions for STA section;
f. Revising the Related Controls and Related Definitions paragraphs in the List of Items Controlled section;
g. Adding paragraph c to the Items paragraph of the List of Items Controlled section.
end regulatory text
The revisions and additions read as follows:
begin regulatory text
4E001''Technology'' as follows (see List of Items Controlled).
Reason for Control: NS, MT, RS, CC, AT
Control(s)Country chart (see supp. No. 1 to part 738)***** RS applies to 4E001.a ''technology'' (if ''required'' for 4A005, 4D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) or 4D004) and if ''required'' for 4E001.cRS Column 1***** License Requirement Note:All license applications for 4E001.a ''technology'' (if ''required'' for 4A005, 4D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) or 4D004) and if ''required'' for 4E001.c must include the information required in Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of the EAR, paragraph (z). Also, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD prior to applying for a license.
* * * * *
List Based License Exceptions (See Part 740 for a Description of All License Exceptions) Back to Top* * * * *
TSR: Yes, except for: ''technology'' for the ''development'' or ''production'' of ''commodities'' with an ''Adjusted Peak Performance'' (''APP'') exceeding 1.0 WT, ''commodities'' in 4A005 or ''software'' in 4D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) or ''required'' for 4D004; or ''technology'' specified by 4E001.c.
* * * * *
Special Conditions for STA Back to TopSTA: License Exception STA may not be used to ship or transmit ''technology'' according to the General Technology Note for the ''development'' or ''production'' of any of the following equipment or ''software'': a. Equipment specified by ECCN 4A001.a.2; b. ''Digital computers'' having an `Adjusted Peak Performance' (`APP') exceeding 1.0 Weighted TeraFLOPS (WT); or .c ''software'' specified in the License Exception STA paragraph found in the License Exception section of ECCN 4D001 to any of the destinations listed in Country Group A:6 (See Supplement No. 1 to part 740 of the EAR); or to ship any ''technology'' specified by 4E001.a ''required'' for ''commodities'' in 4A005 or ''software'' in 4D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004), 4D004, or by 4E001.c, to any destination.
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls: (1) ''Technology'' described under ECCN 4E001.a (''required'' for equipment in 4A005 or ''software'' in 4D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004) or 4D004) or 4E001.c is classified under this ECCN, even if it includes ''technology'' for the ''development'' or ''production'' of cryptographic or cryptanalytic items. (2) See also the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) (22 CFR parts 120 through 130) and the U.S. Munitions List (22 CFR part 121).
Related Definitions: See § 772.1 for the definition of ''intrusion software.''
Items:* * *
c. ''Technology'' ''required'' for the ''development'' of ''intrusion software''.
19.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 5, ECCN 5A001 is amended by:
a. Revising the Reason for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section;
b. Revising the first entry in the table in the License Requirements section;
c. Adding an entry for ''RS'' after the second entry in the table in the License Requirements section;
d. Adding a License Requirement Note after the table in the License Requirements section;
e. Revising the List Based License Exceptions section;
f. Revising the Special Conditions for STA section;
g. Revising the Related Controls paragraph of the List of Items Controlled section; and
h. Adding paragraph .j to the Items paragraph of the List of Items Controlled section.
end regulatory text
The revisions and additions read as follows:
begin regulatory text
5A001Telecommunications systems, equipment, ''components'' and ''accessories,'' as follows (see List of Items Controlled).
Reason for Control: NS, RS, SL, AT
Control(s)Country chart (see supp. No. 1 to part 738)NS applies to 5A001.a, .e, .b.5, f.3, .h and .jNS Column 1***** RS applies to 5A001.jRS Column 1***** License Requirement Note:All license applications for cybersecurity items (5A001.j) must include the information required in Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of the EAR, paragraph (z). Also, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD prior to applying for a license.
* * * * *
List Based License Exceptions (See Part 740 for a Description of All License Exceptions) Back to TopLVS: N/A for 5A001.a, .b.5, .e, .f, .h, and .j; $5000 for 5A001.b.1, .b.2, .b.3, .b.6, .d, and .g; $3000 for 5A001.c.
GBS: Yes, except 5A001.a, .b.5, .e, .f, .h, and .j.
CIV: Yes, except 5A001.a, .b.3, .b.5, .e, .f, .h, and .j.
Special Conditions for STA Back to TopSTA: License Exception STA may not be used to ship any commodity in 5A001.b.3, .b.5, or .h to any of the destinations listed in Country Group A:6 (See Supplement No. 1 to part 740 of the EAR), or to ship any commodity in 5A001.j to any destination.
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls: (1) See USML Category XI for controls on direction-finding ''equipment'' including types of ''equipment'' in ECCN 5A001.e and any other military or intelligence electronic ''equipment'' that is ''subject to the ITAR.'' (2) See USML Category XI(a)(4)(iii) for controls on electronic attack and jamming ''equipment'' defined in 5A001.f and .h that are subject to the ITAR. (3) ''Systems,'' ''equipment'' and ''components'' described under ECCN 5A001.j are classified under this ECCN even if the ''systems,'' ''equipment'' or ''components'' are designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis. (4) ECCN 5A001.j includes a note that explicitly excludes equipment designed for marketing purposes, quality of service (QoS) or quality of experience (QoE) purposes. The intent of the entry is to capture only products that are not ''specially designed'' for legitimate network operator functions. The control has very specific parameters and includes only systems or equipment that perform all five of the capabilities listed in 5A001.j below. Equipment that is not described in the new ECCN 5A001.j entry because it does not have all five capabilities required is likely to be described in ECCNs 5A002 or 5A992 if it has encryption functionality, or ECCNs 5A991 or 4A994 if it does not. However, such equipment may not be sold separately with knowledge that it will be combined with other equipment to comprise a system described in new paragraph ECCN 5A001.j. (see § 764.2(h) of the EAR) (5) See also 5A101, 5A980, and 5A991.
* * * * *
Items:* * *
j. IP network communications surveillance ''systems'' or ''equipment'', and ''specially designed'' components therefor, having all of the following:
j.1. Performing all of the following on a carrier class IP network (e.g., national grade IP backbone):
j.1.a. Analysis at the application layer (e.g., Layer 7 of Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model (ISO/IEC 7498-1));
j.1.b. Extraction of selected metadata and application content (e.g., voice, video, messages, attachments); and
j.1.c. Indexing of extracted data; and
j.2. Being ''specially designed'' to carry out all of the following:
j.2.a. Execution of searches on the basis of `hard selectors'; and
j.2.b. Mapping of the relational network of an individual or of a group of people.
Note:5A001.j does not apply to ''systems'' or ''equipment'', ''specially designed'' for any of the following:
a. Marketing purpose;
b. Network Quality of Service (QoS); or
c. Quality of Experience (QoE).
Technical Note: `Hard selectors': data or set of data, related to an individual (e.g., family name, given name, email or street address, phone number or group affiliations).
20.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 5, ECCN 5B001 is amended by:
a. Revising the Reasons for Control paragraph of the License Requirements section;
b. Revising the table in the License Requirements section;
c. Adding a License Requirement Note after the table in the License Requirements section;
d. Revising the List Based License Exceptions section; and
e. Revising the Special Conditions for STA section.
end regulatory text
The revisions and addition to read as follows:
begin regulatory text
5B001Telecommunication test, inspection and production equipment, ''components'' and ''accessories,'' as follows (See List of Items Controlled).
Reason for Control: NS, RS, AT
Control(s)Country chart(see supp. No. 1 to part 738)NS applies to 5B001.a equipment, ''components'' and ''accessories'' ''specially designed'' for 5A001.jNS Column 1NS applies to entire entry (except 5B001.a for 5A001.j)NS Column 2RS applies to 5B001.a equipment, ''components'' and ''accessories'' ''specially designed'' for 5A001.jRS Column 1AT applies to entire entryAT Column 1License Requirement Note:All license applications for cybersecurity items (5B001.a equipment, ''components'' and ''accessories'' ''specially designed'' for 5A001.j) must include the information required in Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of the EAR, paragraph (z). Also, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD prior to applying for a license.
* * * * *
List Based License Exceptions (See Part 740 for a Description of All License Exceptions) Back to TopLVS:$5000, except N/A for 5B001.a (for 5A001.f.1 or .j)
GBS: Yes, except for 5B001.a (for 5A001.f.1 or .j)
CIV: Yes, except for 5B001.a (for 5A001.f.1 or .j)
Special Conditions for STA Back to TopSTA: License Exception STA may not be used to ship 5B001.a equipment and ''specially designed'' ''components'' or ''accessories'' therefor, ''specially designed'' for the ''development'' or ''production'' of equipment, functions or features specified by ECCN 5A001.b.3, .b.5 or .h to any of the destinations listed in Country Group A:6 (See Supplement No.1 to part 740 of the EAR), or to ship any commodity in 5B001.a for equipment or systems specified by 5A001.f.1. or .j to any destination.
* * * * *
21.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 5, ECCN 5D001 is amended by:
a. Revising the Reasons for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section;
b. Adding an entry for ''RS'' after the entry for ''NS'' in the table in the License Requirements section;
c. Adding a License Requirement Note after the table in the License Requirements section;
d. Revising the List Based License Exceptions section;
e. Revising the Special Conditions for STA section; and
f. Revising the Related Controls paragraph in the List of Items Controlled section.
end regulatory text
The revisions and additions read as follows:
begin regulatory text
5D001 ''Software'' as follows (see List of Items Controlled).
Reason for Control: NS, RS, SL, AT
Control(s)Country chart(see supp. No. 1 to part 738)***** RS applies to 5D001.a ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j, and 5D001.c ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.aRS Column 1***** License Requirement Note:All license applications for cybersecurity items (5D001.a ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j, and 5D001.c ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a) must include the information required in Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of the EAR, paragraph (z). Also, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD prior to applying for a license.
* * * * *
List Based License Exceptions (See Part 740 for a Description of All License Exceptions) Back to TopCIV: Yes, except for ''software'' controlled by 5D001.a and ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''development'' or ''production'' of items controlled by 5A001.b.5, 5A001.f.1, 5A001.h and 5A001.j.
TSR: Yes, except for exports and reexports to destinations outside of those countries listed in Country Group A:5 (See Supplement No. 1 to part 740 of the EAR) of ''software'' controlled by 5D001.a and ''specially designed'' or modified for items controlled by 5A001.b.5, 5A001.f.1, 5A001.h and 5A001.j.
Special Conditions for STA Back to TopSTA: License Exception STA may not be used to ship or transmit 5D001.a ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''development'' or ''production'' of equipment, functions or features, specified by ECCN 5A001.b.3, .b.5, .f.1, .h or .j; and for 5D001.b. for ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified to support ''technology'' specified by the STA paragraph in the License Exception section of ECCN 5E001 to any of the destinations listed in Country Group A:6 (See Supplement No.1 to part 740 of the EAR); and for 5D001.c. for ''software'' ''specially designed'' or modified to provide characteristics, functions or features of equipment or systems classified under ECCNs 5A001.f.1 or .j, or 5B001.a (for 5A001.f.1 or .j)).
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls: (1) ''Software'' described under ECCN 5D001.a or .c (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j) is classified under this ECCN, even if the ''software'' is designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis. (2) See also 5D980 and 5D991.
* * * * *
22.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 5, Part 1, ECCN 5E001 is amended by:
a. Revising the Reasons for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section;
b. Adding an entry for ''RS'' after the entry for ''NS'' in the table in the License Requirements section;
c. Adding a License Requirement Note after the table in the License Requirements section;
d. Revising the TSR paragraph in the List Based License Exceptions section;
e. Revising the Special Conditions for STA section; and
f. Adding paragraph (3) to the Related Control paragraph in the List of Items Controlled section.
end regulatory text
The revisions and additions read as follows:
begin regulatory text
5E001''Technology'' as follows (see List of Items Controlled).
Reason for Control: NS, RS, SL, AT
Control(s)Country chart(see supp. No. 1 to part 738)***** RS applies to 5E001.a for commodities controlled under 5A001.j or ''software'' controlled under 5D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j), and 5D001.c (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a) for RS reasonsRS Column 1***** License Requirement Note:All license applications for cybersecurity items (5A001.j or ''software'' controlled under 5D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j), and 5D001.c (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a)) must include the information required in Supplement No. 2 to part 748 of the EAR, paragraph (z). Also, all such cybersecurity items using or incorporating encryption or other ''information security'' functionality classified under ECCNs 5A002, 5D002, 5A992.c, 5D992.c or 5E002, must also satisfy the registration, review and reporting requirements set forth in §§ 740.17, 742.15(b) and 748.3(d) of the EAR, including submissions to the ENC Encryption Request Coordinator, Ft. Meade, MD prior to applying for a license.
* * * * *
List Based License Exceptions (See Part 740 for a Description of All License Exceptions) Back to Top* * * * *
TSR: Yes, except: N/A for ''technology'' controlled by 5E001.a if ''required'' for the ''development'' or ''production'' of items controlled by 5A001.f.1. or .j, 5D001.a (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.f.1 or .j) or 5D001.c (if ''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a) to any destination; or for exports or reexports to destinations outside of those countries listed in Country Group A:5 (See Supplement No. 1 to part 740 of the EAR) of ''technology'' controlled by 5E001.a for the ''development'' or ''production'' of the following: (1) Items controlled by 5A001.b.5 or 5A001.h; or (2) ''Software'' controlled by 5D001.a that is ''specially designed'' or modified for the ''development'' or ''production'' of equipment, functions or features controlled by 5A001.b.5 or 5A001.h.
Special Conditions for STA Back to TopSTA: License Exception STA may not be used to ship or transmit ''technology'' according to the General Technology Note for the ''development'' or ''production'' of equipment, functions or features specified by 5A001.b.3, .b.5 or .h; or for ''software'' in 5D001.a that is specified in the STA paragraph in the License Exception section of ECCN 5D001 to any of the destinations listed in Country Group A:6 (See Supplement No.1 to part 740 of the EAR); or to ship any ''technology'' in 5E001.a if ''required'' for any commodity in 5A001.f.1 or .j, or if ''required'' for any ''software'' in 5D001.a or .c (''specially'' or modified designed for any commodity in 5A001.f.1 or .j or 5B001.a (''specially designed'' for 5A001.f.1 or .j)), to any destination.
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls:* * * (3) ''Technology'' described under ECCN 5E001.a if ''required'' for ''systems,'' ''equipment'' or ''components'' classified under 5A001.j or ''software'' classified under 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a) is classified under this ECCN even if it includes ''technology'' for the ''development'' or ''production'' of cryptographic or cryptanalytic items.
* * * * *
23.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 5 Part 2, ECCN 5A002 is amended by adding paragraph (4) to the Related Controls paragraph in the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows:
5A002''Information security'' systems, equipment ''components'' therefor, as follows (see List of Items Controlled).
* * * * *
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls:* * * (4) ''Systems,'' ''equipment'' and ''components'' described under ECCNs 4A005 or 5A001.j are classified under ECCNs 4A005 or 5A001.j, even if the ''systems,'' ''equipment'' or ''components'' are designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis.
* * * * *
24.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 5 Part 2, ECCN 5D002 is amended by adding paragraph (3) to the Related Controls paragraph in the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows:
5D002''Software'' as follows (see List of Items Controlled).
* * * * *
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls:* * * (3) ''Software'' described under ECCN 4D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 4A005 or 4D004), 4D004, 5D001.a (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j) or 5D001.c (''specially designed'' or modified for 5A001.j or 5B001.a) is classified under those ECCNs, even if the ''software'' is designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis.
* * * * *
25.In Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 5 Part 2, ECCN 5E002 is amended by revising the Related Controls paragraph in the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows:
5E002''Technology'' as follows (see List of Items Controlled).
* * * * *
List of Items Controlled Back to TopRelated Controls: (1) See also 5E992. This entry does not control ''technology'' ''required'' for the ''use'' of equipment excluded from control under the Related Controls paragraph or the Technical Notes in ECCN 5A002 or ''technology'' related to equipment excluded from control under ECCN 5A002. This ''technology'' is classified as ECCN 5E992. (2) ''Technology'' described under ECCN 4E001.a (''required'' for equipment in 4A005 or ''software'' in 4D004), 4E001.c, or 5E001.a (''required'' for 5A001.j or 5D001.a) that is designed or modified to use ''cryptography'' or cryptanalysis is classified under ECCNs 4E001.a or .c, or ECCN 5E001.a, respectively.
* * * * *
end regulatory text
Dated: May 11, 2015.
Kevin J. Wolf,
Assistant Secretary for Export Administration.
[FR Doc. 2015-11642 Filed 5-19-15; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3351-33-P
Listen Up Climate Combatants - It's About to Get Real Hot - Hit & Run : Reason.com
Sat, 23 May 2015 03:58
Jason-2The Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang is reporting that a strong El Nino is being forecasted for this fall or winter. The El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is a weather phenomenon in which hot water near Indonesia sloshes over to the coast of Peru. When this happens it dramatically boosts the average temperature of the global atmosphere. The highest global average temperature recorded (according to the satellite temperature records) in the past 150 years or so occurred during the big El Nino of 1998. Californians mired in drought should hope that the forecast is true, because it means that they will likely be inundated.
NOAA
Of course, forecasters said pretty much the same thing last June, but the models really mean it this time. From the Post:
El Nino is here, strengthening, and the buzz is growing that it could become a ''big one'' by the fall or winter.
The global consequences of a powerhouse El Nino would be enormous. But just how likely is that? Both computer model and human forecasters suggest it's a very real possibility, at least a 50-50 one. Computer models are particularly aggressive in their forecasts.
The models forecasts compiled by the International Research Institute (IRI) for Climate and Society, based at Columbia University, on average predict a strong event by the fall. ...
Very strong or ''super El Nino'' events fall at the most intense end of the El Nino spectrum, which starts at weak and then steps up through moderate and strong levels. Only two events in modern records have ever achieved ''very strong'' intensity were the events in 1982-1983 and 1997-1998, which was the strongest on record. The 1997-1998 event is well-known for contributing to torrents of rain in California, leading to $550 million in damages.
El Nino might finally boost global average temperature enough to pass the 0.5 degree Celsius threshold for detecting human influence on the climate set by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change back in 1990. Maybe just in time for the U.N. Climate Change conference in Paris this December.
Ronald Bailey is a science correspondent at Reason magazine and author of Liberation Biology (Prometheus).
Amtrak trying to spread some of the blame for last week's derailment onto the FCC, for refusing to give them 220-222MHz to use for automated train controls.
Sat, 23 May 2015 00:33
The precise cause of last week's tragic Amtrak derailment, which killed eight people and shut down train service along the busy Northeast Corridor, remains a mystery. Whatever the cause, the crash revealed some fundamental gaps in Amtrak's safety system '' most notably the failure to deploy Positive Train Control (PTC) technology that would have automatically slowed or stopped the train once it exceeded the speed limit ahead of the curve where it jack-knifed off the rails. Although Congress mandated PTC technology seven years ago, Amtrak cited a lack of timely access to wireless spectrum (the public airwaves) for delays in implementing the safety system.
Spectrum refers to the wireless frequencies that power technologies ranging from FM radio and satellite communication to mobile phones and Wi-Fi routers. While increasingly critical to modern communications, spectrum'--and the rules that govern access to spectrum in the U.S. '-- rarely makes headline news. But following the Amtrak derailment, people are suddenly conscious of the fact that the nation's policies on access to the airwaves will impact almost everything in their lives.
So is Amtrak's claim that spectrum access is a factor in this disaster legitimate? The answer is yes and no.
So is Amtrak's claim that spectrum access is a factor in this disaster legitimate? The answer is yes and no. Amtrak asked for exclusive, and expensive, spectrum and this request'--while puzzling'--highlights deep structural problems with how our government has parceled out and regulated spectrum in the past.
PTC relies on a series of track-side wireless beacons and onboard sensors to automatically issue warnings to train operators about excessive speed, potential collisions, or misaligned switches at intersections. To implement PTC effectively, Amtrak and other railroads needed to decide among a variety of ways to access the spectrum they needed to send wireless signals between trains and infrastructure along their tracks.
In 2011, the railroad industry told the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that it needed exclusive access to a specific band of costly spectrum frequencies in order to deploy PTC. Because equipment was already being manufactured for this band, Amtrak and other railroads argued that a uniform allocation dedicated to PTC would reduce costs and promote inter-operability. The particular band Amtrak requested '' at 220 to 222 megahertz '' is located just above TV channel 13 and represents prime wireless real estate because of its ability to go long distances and penetrate into buildings. At next year's auction of TV spectrum being vacated by broadcasters, mobile carriers like Verizon expect to pay at least $500 million for the equivalent of a single megahertz of this scarce low-band spectrum.
Tellingly, the 2008 legislation mandating PTC did not include language instructing the FCC to allocate exclusive spectrum licenses to railroads. The industry asked the FCC for a grant of spectrum, which it declined to do. Even if the industry's request was good policy (and it wasn't), current law requires that valuable commercial spectrum ''must be acquired at auction or from third parties,'' as the chief of the FCC's Wireless Bureau explained in a recent blog post. Instead, the FCC told the industry that if it wanted exclusive use of this pricey spectrum along its tracks, it should negotiate private lease or purchase deals with existing license holders through secondary market brokers. While a consortium of freight-rail interests were able to navigate the notoriously illiquid secondary market for spectrum, Amtrak's efforts were long delayed due to a lack of resources and other complications.
Amtrak's insistence on using expensive, exclusive-use spectrum reflects a traditional and ultimately unsustainable approach to spectrum policy.
Amtrak's insistence on using expensive, exclusive-use spectrum reflects a traditional and ultimately unsustainable approach to spectrum policy. Since the government began issuing spectrum licenses to particular companies in the 1920s, representatives from each new industry would come, hat in hand, to the FCC to request its own special purpose spectrum allocation. At this point, almost every desirable frequency band has been assigned to someone; and because licenses typically renew automatically and equipment can last many years, it's enormously difficult to find spectrum for new technologies and expanding uses like wireless broadband even though most bands are not used in every area or very intensively.
The cumulative result of this command-and-control approach to allocation is that the nation's spectrum remains extremely ''siloed.''
Thankfully, policymakers in Washington are moving away from exclusive licenses towards a new framework based on flexible use and shared access to spectrum bands. Amtrak and other entities with very specific needs for wireless connectivity will increasingly have better, faster and more affordable options as the FCC expands on its recent efforts to open large, underutilized bands for shared use.
Spectrum sharing is not a new idea. Indeed, it led to the development of one of the most important economically valuable wireless technologies: Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi thrived because the FCC allocated wide blocks of spectrum for ''unlicensed'' use. This meant that any technology could use these frequencies, provided they operated at low power to avoid interference. Technology did not need an exclusive license. The flexible and shared approach led to innovation. Spectrum originally dismissed as ''junk bands'' and the home of modest technologies like garage door openers and cordless phones are now home to Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and other unlicensed technologies central to fueling the growing universe of mobile devices.
''Unlicensed'' technology utilizing shared spectrum is common not just in consumer devices, but as a Harvard Law School study points out they are increasingly the go-to means of wireless connectivity in a wide variety of industrial settings, including for critical health care and electric utility applications. A majority of wireless health care devices, including patient monitoring systems, utilize unlicensed spectrum. Wireless smart grid and automated meter systems deployed by electric utilities also rely primarily on unlicensed shared spectrum.
To address the scarcity of licensed spectrum, over the past three years the FCC and Obama administration have worked in tandem to open under-utilized military and other federal agency bands for spectrum sharing as well. For example, the U.S. Navy controls a very large and nearly exclusive spectrum assignment for shipborne radar systems, which for decades has left that hugely valuable spectrum unused across the entire interior of the country. In 2012, the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) proposed that this should be the first band opened for dynamic sharing by private sector devices and networks that can rely on spectrum sensing and a geolocation database '' a ''Spectrum Access System'' '' to operate on the band while simultaneously protecting naval radar and a handful of satellite receiver sites from harmful interference.
To its credit, last month the FCC unanimously voted to create a new Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) that promises to provide the framework for what the PCAST proposed could be a ''shared spectrum superhighway'' spanning more than 1,000 megahertz of underutilized spectrum. On a portion of the new shared band, companies can pay for ''priority access licenses,'' which ensure quality of service over far smaller areas than are sold at traditional FCC auctions. And across the rest of the band '' including the licensed portion when it's not in use '' any individual or company can operate on an essentially unlicensed basis, very much as Wi-Fi operates on today's unlicensed bands.
Spectrum sharing approaches like the new CBRS can address the needs of Amtrak and potentially thousands of other needs for specific wireless connectivity.
Spectrum sharing approaches like the new CBRS can address the needs of Amtrak and potentially thousands of other needs for specific wireless connectivity. Rather than rely on pricey auctions or secondary markets for a single channel of exclusive-use spectrum, railroads and many other industries can design systems that can operate on multiple, redundant networks and bands.
In Amtrak's case, the fiber optic cable running along the railroad right-of-ways make shared spectrum bands more practical and reliable. With immediate access to a high-capacity fiber connection throughout its system, Amtrak and most other rail operators can rely on the open access and low-power shared spectrum'' such as the unlicensed and 3.5 GHz Citizens Broadband Radio Service bands '' that are increasingly plentiful.
Although there is no way to undo the tragedy of the derailed Amtrak commuter train north of Philadelphia, more updated and forward-looking approaches to wireless connectivity and spectrum acquisition should be among the lessons learned by policymakers both inside and beyond government. As we move headlong into a world where virtually every system and device is connected and communicating, the stakes involved in getting spectrum policy right will only increase.
Michael Calabrese is director of the Wireless Future Project, which is part of New America's Open Technology Institute. Patrick Lucey is a Policy Program Associate with the Open Technology Institute.
Presidential Proclamation - National Hurricane Preparedness Week, 2015
Sat, 23 May 2015 00:32
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
May 22, 2015
NATIONAL HURRICANE PREPAREDNESS WEEK, 2015 - - - - - - - BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA A PROCLAMATION
Hurricanes cause devastating and sometimes deadly damage, with violent winds and heavy rains destroying buildings, inundating both coastal and inland areas, and displacing residents from their communities. Each year, we call attention to the risks hurricanes and tropical storms pose, as well as the steps we can take to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities. During National Hurricane Preparedness Week, we recommit to strengthening the capacity of local responders and creating resilient cities, towns, and neighborhoods that are prepared when disaster strikes.
My Administration continues to partner with State, local, and tribal governments, helping them prepare for and respond to hurricanes. We are supporting new technology to help families develop emergency plans, determine evacuation routes, and receive disaster alerts; once a storm has passed, these tools can also help connect residents to resources -- from clean water and shelter to information about power outages and gas station closings. We continue to fund rebuilding efforts in areas devastated by hurricanes, ensuring new infrastructure can withstand future storms. And to bolster our recovery efforts for the long term, we have instituted a Unified Federal Review process to help those in need of recovery assistance better navigate the permits and environmental reviews necessary to ensure a rapid and resilient recovery. Hurricane-associated storm intensity and rainfall rates are projected to increase during this century, in part due to increasing sea surface temperatures. These changes, combined with rising sea levels, could lead to additional damage and higher costs in both coastal and inland communities. That is why, as part of my Climate Action Plan, my Administration is taking steps to prepare for and combat these effects. We are supporting communities with Federal resources, and earlier this year, I signed an Executive Order that establishes a flood standard for new and rebuilt federally funded structures in and around floodplains. Preparing for and responding to hurricanes is a team effort -- everyone has a role to play in keeping our communities safe. Now is the time for each of us to take simple steps to prepare our families for severe weather. Find out today if you live in a storm surge evacuation zone, a low-lying floodplain, or any other location from which you might need to evacuate. I encourage all Americans living in hurricane-threatened areas to build an emergency supply kit, learn evacuation routes, make a family communication strategy, and practice this plan. During a storm, always be sure to follow the instructions of State, local, and tribal officials. To learn more about ways to prepare for hurricanes and other natural disasters, visit www.Ready.gov and www.Hurricanes.gov/Prepare. As we enter hurricane season, remember that disaster preparedness is a shared responsibility. Together, let us rededicate ourselves to ensuring the safety of our loved ones and neighbors by building communities ready to weather storms and all natural disasters. NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim May 24 through May 30, 2015, as National Hurricane Preparedness Week. I call upon government agencies, private organizations, schools, media, and residents in the coastal areas of our Nation to share information about hurricane preparedness and response to help save lives and protect communities.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-second day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-ninth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation - Prayer for Peace, Memorial Day, 2015
Sat, 23 May 2015 00:32
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
May 22, 2015
PRAYER FOR PEACE, MEMORIAL DAY, 2015
- - - - - - -
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
On Memorial Day, the United States pauses to honor the fallen heroes who died in service to our Nation. With heavy hearts and a sense of profound gratitude, we mourn these women and men -- parents, children, loved ones, comrades-in-arms, friends, and all those known and unknown -- who believed so deeply in what our country could be they were willing to give their lives to protect its promise. Our hearts ache in their absence, but their spirit gives us strength to continue their work of securing and renewing the liberties that all Americans cherish and for which these heroes gave their last full measure of devotion.
In solemn reflection, we gather -- in small towns and big cities, on battlefields, in cemeteries, and at sacred places where blood has been shed for freedom's cause -- throughout our country and around the world to remember the unbroken chain of patriots who won independence, saved our Union, defeated fascism, and protected the Nation we love from emerging threats in a changing world. Today, their legacy is carried forward by a new generation of servicemen and women and all who strive to shape a more perfect America; and their enormous sacrifices continue to make our opportunity possible.
We owe all those who sacrifice in our name a tremendous debt, including our Nation's mothers and fathers who have given their daughters and sons to America, spouses and partners who shoulder the weight of unthinkable loss, and courageous children in whom the legacies of their parents live on. As a Nation, we must uphold our obligations to these Gold Star families. We have pledged to them that they will never walk alone -- that their country will be there for them always -- and we must work every day to make good on this promise.
Our Nation will never forget the valor and distinction of the women and men who defend freedom, justice, and peace. Today, we rededicate ourselves to commitments equal to the caliber of those who have rendered the highest service: to support our troops with the resources they need to do their jobs; to never stop searching for those who have gone missing or are prisoners of war; to ensure all our veterans have access to the care and benefits they have earned and deserve; and to continue our constant work of building a Nation worthy of the heroes we honor today.
In honor of all of our fallen service members, the Congress, by a joint resolution approved May 11, 1950, as amended (36 U.S.C. 116), has requested the President issue a proclamation calling on the people of the United States to observe each Memorial Day as a day of prayer for permanent peace and designating a period on that day when the people of the United States might unite in prayer. The Congress, by Public Law 106-579, has also designated 3:00 p.m. local time on that day as a time for all Americans to observe, in their own way, the National Moment of Remembrance.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Memorial Day, May 25, 2015, as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each locality at 11:00 a.m. of that day as a time during which people may unite in prayer.
I also ask all Americans to observe the National Moment of Remembrance beginning at 3:00 p.m. local time on Memorial Day. I request the Governors of the United States and its Territories, and the appropriate officials of all units of government, to direct that the flag be flown at half-staff until noon on this Memorial Day on all buildings, grounds, and naval vessels throughout the United States and in all areas under its jurisdiction and control. I also request the people of the United States to display the flag at half-staff from their homes for the customary forenoon period.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-second day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-ninth.
BARACK OBAMA
Nuland's visit to Moscow and Washington's chameleon effect
Sat, 23 May 2015 00:31
(C) UnknownVictoria Nuland, previously foreign policy adviser to vice-president Dick Cheney. Married to neo-con Robert Kagan. Her slogan sums up the US' attitude towards the EU.
Victoria Nuland arrived in Moscow last weekend and declared that Ukraine's government doesn't intend to resume the civil war. Either Nuland was being mendacious or President Poroshenko is on a dangerous solo-run.It's all gone Lethal Weapon. Not in the sense of munitions, although some of those are definitely in play, but rather the movie series. Just as Danny Glover and Mel Gibson delivered four memorable performances in their good cop/bad cop roles, the US State Department is now deploying the tactic.
First John Kerry, who like Glover probably thinks he's getting too old for this, turns up all smiles in Sochi. Convinced the straight man's charm offensive has softened Russian resolve, the Americans then let Victoria Nuland loose on Moscow. The fact that the Russians were so pleasant about it, after shehelpedcoordinate the 2014 Kiev coup, speaks volumes for their tolerance.
While Cold War 2 might have stalled in pre-production, spin-offs from the original remain box office.Just as Cheers led to Frasier, the first installment has left us with Ukraine. As the film director Baz Luhrmann once explained, channeling Mary Schmich, "real troubles are... the kind that blindside you at pm on some idle Tuesday." Ukraine is exactly that kind of thing. Thanks is no small part to Nuland, it's become an albatross for both Washington and the Kremlin.
Nuland was adamant that she came in peace .
"There is no indication from our own information, or from my consultations in Kiev, that anybody on the Ukrainian side, anybody in leadership - and I spoke to President Poroshenko, I spoke to Prime Minister Yatsenyuk, I've spoken to security officials - has any intention of launching new hostilities," she declared.
Given that Nuland was trying to cover every feasible base, her comments just might have been genuine.
Then just a day later, the Ukrainian army shelled Donetsk, killing at least one civilian. RT's Murad Gazdiev, on the ground in the modern-day Sarajevo, described the attack as one of the worst for months. He also reported that the target was the north part of the city, where the previously contested airport is located.
Of course, the assault came just days after Poroshenko passionatelyvowedto "fight to the last drop of blood" against what he described as "Russian aggressors." Furthermore, on Germany's state-controlled ZDF network, the billionaire Oligarch called the Minsk peace agreement a "pseudo-peace" deal. Before that, Poroshenko said: "I have no doubt - we will free the airport (in Donetsk), because it is our land. And we will rebuild the airport."
Something doesn't add up here. Let's assume that the US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs would not travel to Russia and knowingly lie. In that case, either Nuland has completely lost control of her Ukrainian proxies or those once-useful idiots are performing to a different script. If it's the former, expect more intense violence this week. If the US still calls the tune, Poroshenko and his cronies should fall into line with reasonable haste.
Perhaps, I'm naive but I'd really love to believe that Washington no longer commands the Kiev regime. It would mean that the US bears no culpability for the ridiculous anti-Communist laws and the appalling snub to brave, elderly veterans of WW2 on Kiev's 70th Victory Day, when they were forced to accept parity of esteem with theirNaziopponents.
Assuming Nuland is being sincere, it's then clear that the post-Maidan regime fear the US is washing its hands of them. If Washington is earnestly sacrificing its pet crazies in Kiev in order to secure Russian cooperation in more important areas, the world wins. Ultimately, Ukraine will also benefit. A bad peace for the failed state is still better than a good war. After 18 months of collective hara-kiri, the fractured lands need respite.
Interestingly, the Russian side denied that any deals had been done. The Deputy Foreign Minister, Sergey Ryabkov said: "We focused on the problematic aspects of bilateral relations and some international problems." As for the bilateral relations, he added "Russia said it was dissatisfied with their current form, but we are ready to continue dialogue and discussion of all the existing problems, whether in the military-political sphere or the humanitarian sphere."The disastrous condition of Ukraine's economy must also be focusing minds. The private intelligence company Stratfor, known as the 'shadow CIA,' noted that Nuland's visit to Moscow "is the latest indicator" that Washington's position on Ukraine and its role in the country's future "may be shifting."
After 18 months of ludicrously soft-soaping the regime, even the US mainstream press is suddenly highlighting Kiev's problems with corruption. This increases the likelihood that Nuland has had a Damascene moment. It's hard to imagine the US' lap dog corporate media straying too far from the State Department line.(C) UnknownPoroshenko, you're not delivering.
The New York Times last weekend quoted Bruce Jackson, President of something called The Project on Transitional Democracies, once a side-project of the supposedly dissolved 'Project For The New American Century (PFTNAC)' who said: "Poroshenko, whether you like him or not, he's not delivering." Jackson is former military intelligence officer. Additionally, he once ran the US Committee on NATO, dedicated to expansion of the alliance.However, what is far more significant is the fact that, together with Robert Kagan, Jackson served as one of five directors of the PFTNAC, a neocon think tank that also involved Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz. Kagan is the husband of Victoria Nuland. It's reasonable to assume that whatever Jackson is thinking isn't far removed from Nuland's thoughts.
Jackson further observes that "the Ukrainian government is so weak and fragile that it's too weak to do the necessary things to build a unified and independent state."
In British soccer, there's a humorous expression, "squeaky-bum time," attributed to the legendary Alex Ferguson. It relates to the exciting part of a game or season, particularly the last few actions. It's fair to say that it's now "squeaky-bum time" for Poroshenko. His American sponsors could well be abandoning him. If so, his future prospects are beyond grim.
Ukraine's GDP plummeted by 17.6 percent in the first quarter of this year. The New York Times reports that officials in Kiev now believe that the $40 billion pledged by the IMF, US and EU will not be enough to keep the country afloat. The NYT further suggests that Yatsenyuk and his cabinet may have embezzled more than $325 million since taking office.
For his part, Jackson continues: "We don't simply have Russian aggression against the victim Ukraine... Ukraine is now seen as not to be trusted. What the EU is saying is: Where is the decentralization? Where is the commitment? Where are the reforms?"
When somebody like Bruce Jackson, so close to US policymakers on Eastern Europe, to be talking this way, it is reasonable to assume that something has changed dramatically. While Nuland might revel in the role of bad cop, she's also not a law onto herself.
President Obama has 18 months left in office. This crucial period when two-term US Presidents usually strive to finalize their legacy. You will remember that George Bush was much more enthusiastic about Georgia in 2003, than he was in 2008, when he seemed to regard it as an irritant? There's a simple reason for this. By the time Mikhail Saakashvili launched his ridiculous war; Bush was furiously attempting to burnish his place in history.
Obama is now entering the same final lap. The key foreign policy issues on his table are Iran and Syria. On these he can realistically make headway and cooperation from Russia would be extremely useful in both situations. Devoting further time and effort to Ukraine would be as productive as banging his head off a wall.
Russia's tabloid daily Moskovsky Komsomoletssuggested on Monday that Nuland was "unlikely to be bringing with her a plan for how to resolve the conflict in Ukraine. It is unusual for a person who started a fire to be involved in the fire-fighting effort."
While that's true, I think it was Kerry who came to mend fences. Nuland's public presence was rather an attempt re-assure Washington's Republicans that Obama is not suddenly going soft on Russia, as they would perceive it. Good cop/bad cop, indeed. Squeaky bum time in Kiev.
Moscow tells Facebook, Google, and Twitter to block extremist content, or else
Sat, 23 May 2015 00:30
(C) Desconocido
The head of Russia's media watchdog has threatened Google, Facebook and Twitter with fines and bans unless the companies comply with Moscow's demands to block content it deems extremist and to share information about online traffic on individual pages, a news report said.In letters to senior executives of the three social networks, head of the Roskomnadzor watchdog, Alexander Zharov, accused the companies of committing "lawless actions" by ignoring Russia's demands, and threatened sanctions, pro-government daily Izvestia reported Tuesday.
Roskomnadzor spokesman Vadim Ampelonsky confirmed that the letters had been sent out, the report said.
"Letters of this kind have become standard practice in our communication with foreign Internet companies," Ampelonsky was quoted as saying. "Usually the dispatch of such letters brings about certain progress in communication."
"We hope that in this case the companies will respond and fulfill the demands that have repeatedly been presented to them," he said, Izvestia reported.
A previous batch of letters was sent out by Zharov's deputy, Maxim Ksendzov, earlier this month, Izvestia reported.
In those messages, Ksendzov demanded that Twitter, Facebook and Google delete content that "contains calls for mass unrest [or] carrying out extremist activities" or calls for attending unauthorized rallies, the report said.
He also demanded that the companies provide information about the numbers of visitors to specific pages, Izvestia reported. This demand was prompted by a law enacted last summer that requires bloggers whose accounts receive more than 3,000 visitors per day to register as mass media.
Moscow has sought to control expressions of political dissent in the country, particularly after opposition protests brought down a Kremlin-backed administration in neighboring Ukraine slightly over a year ago.
Because most Russian mass media is state controlled, opposition leaders have often turned to social media to voice their opinions and organize rallies and protests.
Winter returns in late May with 18 inches of snow in German Alps
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:48
(C) J¶rg HeisigWinter return to the Alps
Heavy Snow on May 21!!Up to half a meter (18 inches) of snow hit higher elevations yesterday Snow covers the landscape around the Herzogstand in the Bavarian Alps at around 1730 meters altitude.
Not far away is the Walchensee, a popular destination for the residents of Munich.
Thanks to Loher for this link
Winter returns
Winter returns
U.S. to send more bombs to Israel to be dropped on Palestinian people
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:47
"Israel will receive a supply of precision-guided munitions consisting of 750 bunker buster bombs, 3,000 Hellfire missiles, 250 medium-range air-to-air missiles and 4,100 glide bombs, in a deal worth $1.879 billion. In addition, the package includes 14,500 missile guidance systems '-- known as tail kits for Joint Direct Attack Munitions '-- which convert unguided bombs into GPS guided missiles." (thanks Amir)
Japan unveils $110 billion plan to fund Asia infrastructure, eye on AIIB
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:42
Thu May 21, 2015 6:50am EDTBy Leika Kihara and Linda Sieg
TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan unveiled a plan on Thursday to provide $110 billion in aid for Asian infrastructure projects, as China prepares to launch a new institutional lender that is seen as encroaching on the regional financial clout of Tokyo and its ally Washington.
The amount of Japanese funds, to be invested over 5 years, tops the expected $100 billion capitalisation of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the Beijing-sponsored lender scheduled to begin operations next year.
Japanese officials said the plan, announced by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at a symposium of Asian officials and experts, represents a 30 percent increase over Tokyo's past infrastructure funding.
Japan said it wants to focus on "high quality" aid, for example, by helping recipients tap its expertise in reducing pollution while building roads and railways. That's an implicit contrast with the AIIB, whose projects Washington has said may not adequately safeguard the environment.
"We intend to actively make use of such funds in order to spread high-quality and innovative infrastructure throughout Asia, taking a long-term view," Abe said in a speech announcing the plan.
About half the funds will be extended by state affiliated agencies in charge of aid and loans and the rest in collaboration with the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
Japan hopes the aid will help draw private funds to help meet the vast demand for infrastructure in Asia.
The United States and Japan were caught off guard when a total of 57 countries, including Group of Seven members Britain, Germany and France jumped on board the AIIB bandwagon by March.
The two allies have stayed out of the China-led institution, seen as a rival to the U.S.-dominated World Bank and Japan-led Asian Development Bank, citing concerns about transparency and governance - although Tokyo for one is keeping its options open.
Finance officials said Japan's aid plan had long been in the works as part of a Group of 20 pledge to meet global needs.
But worried that Japan may look less pro-active than Beijing, Tokyo also wants to showcase its support for the region.
"We had thought it was better not to speak up much, but that doesn't get through," Koichi Hagiuda, a special aide to Abe in his Liberal Democratic Party, told Reuters.
"So some demonstration seems to be needed."
Japanese and Chinese finance officials will meet in Beijing on June 6 and may discuss the AIIB, but Tokyo looks unlikely to make a decision on joining any time soon.
LDP lawmakers looking into the matter will put together a report later this month or in early June, but will only state the pros and cons of joining or staying out, said Masahiko Shimayama, a member of the party panel.
"I think it's unlikely that the government would make a decision on when to join based on our report," he told Reuters.
Tokyo, which given the size of its economy could become the No. 2 donor if it decides to join the AIIB, may well keep its powder dry for some time to come.
"If it (AIIB) becomes a proper financial institution for the sake of Asia, there is no reason to be embarrassed about joining later," Hagiuda said.
The United States and Japan agreed last month that the World Bank and ADB should team up with the AIIB in syndicated loans as a way to help the new lender establish strong standards.
The AIIB is holding a meeting of founder members in Singapore this week to decide on the articles of association and operational details. A delegate to the conference, speaking on condition of anonymity, said it was unlikely the new bank could start lending at the start of 2016 as predicted, given the need for member countries to get approvals from their legislatures.
"China hopes that members get such approvals by year-end and the operations start from the next year, said the Asian delegate. "But I wonder if it is possible, given domestic political situations in each country."
(Additional reporting by Jongwoo Cheon in Singapore; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan)
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VIDEO-Nuland Sticks Her Nose In Minsk | Real Jew News
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:40
Brother NathanaelMay 21, 2015 @ 6:50 pmText ''Text''Text
Nuland Sticks Her Nose In MinskBy Brother Nathanael KapnerCopyright 2015
Don't think for a minute that Nuland has benign designs with regard to the Minsk Accords.
She's a diplomatic assassin and her movements predict unrest, turmoil, and coup d'(C)tats.
Her latest crusade in Jewish cunning is spouting ''support'' of Minsk.
[Clip: ''I come after Sochi to make absolutely clear the US commitment to the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements and to make clear that we are eager to deepen our involvement in helping the parties achieve full implementation.'']
But America isn't a signatory to Minsk. Nuland's been an adversary from the start, not a peacemaker.
If she was, she'd pull out our troops in Ukraine and all military aid as well.
Or at least threaten to if Kiev launches new assaults on East Ukraine.
But she's a dog that doesn't bark when blood's on the butcher's board.
No sooner did she leave Kiev that her puppet Poroschenko starts shelling Donetsk. Nudelman speaks, Porky nods.
Does she care about the bloodshed she's caused? Naah. LGBTs, yes'...dead Ukrainians, no.
[Clip: ''Today, Crimea remains under illegal annexation and human rights abuses are the norm, not the exception for Crimea's most vulnerable populations especially Crimean Tartars, Ukrainians who won't give up their passports, and LGBT citizens.'']
LGBT's? Not the issue. Ukraine's a basket case with its economy tanking. That's the issue.
The IMF and its Jewish tycoons are rubbing their hands just waiting for Ukraine to go belly up so they can buy its resources at fire sale prices.
Privatization means Jewification and oligarch Kolomoisky wants a big chunk of it.
It's a sad day when Nuland sticks her nose in a country's affairs.
Now she's blowing her nose all over Minsk and Putin's push for a political solution.
She doesn't really want to see Minsk work since its Putin's plan for ''federalization'' that gives autonomy to the East Ukraine Republics and national stability.
An unstable Ukraine is bad for Putin, but good for Nuland.
So long as Nudelman can keep the war going, build up Ukraine's military, terrorize the East Republics, and subdue the ethnic Russians, she'll have a turf to plant missiles on'...aimed at Moscow and beyond.
Ukraine's her baby and she's not going to let Minsk snatch it up.
I mean, Ukraine is Nuland's abortion, and there's not enough Kleenex to clean up the mess.
Brother NathanaelMay 21, 2015 @ 6:51 pmWatch This NEW Video Worldwide & In All EU Countries CENSOR FREE:
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Brother NathanaelMay 21, 2015 @ 6:53 pmSTREETS ACROSS AMERICA!'...HAVE CROSS WILL TRAVEL!
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FrankMay 21, 2015 @ 7:20 pm@+BN
Absolutely love your speaking truth to power, Brother Nathanael.
NIQMay 21, 2015 @ 7:33 pmBroN!
I don't think that anyone could present what you expose in this video in a more succinct, concise manner, in a perfect delivery in tone, intonation and timing, your trade-mark, 'un match able'!
What a delight to have you in this fight!
'...and as you know, when it comes to religion I am none of the above, not even atheist (not a religion, I know!). '...but my respect for you is complete.
NIQ.
Dr Caroline FerrisMay 21, 2015 @ 7:45 pmAt least now we know why she hates Putin so much'...
MichaelMay 21, 2015 @ 7:55 pmI noticed immediately the arrogance in Nuland's (I mean Noodle's) body language when speaking of alleged human rights abuses in Crimea. I can't help but think of the lying girl alleging babies thrown from incubators.
Now who was behind Ukraine's government overthrown in 2014? The Jew World Order, that's who. And these Zionists are telling us about morality! Cry me a river.
KathJulianeMay 21, 2015 @ 9:16 pmDear +BN,
Congratulations on yet another dynamite Video!
And you are so correct '-- the Nudel-dog didn't bark.
If Hillary's understudy, the neocon hawk Noodlewoman, the useless Kerry, the state department of Jewistan, and AIPAC-occupied Washington DC were actually committed to doing what she spewed forth about supporting the Minsk agreements, then they are supposed to be pushing not only Poroshenko but the Ukrainian parliament to stick to the points of Minsk II in drafting the amended constitution.
Kerry and Nuland have been called out on their hypocrisy, saying one thing and doing another.
Kiev is Nuland's hand-picked sock puppet regime.
If if the two diplomats were in earnest, like you said, the first thing would have been the White House's recall of all US military and civilian personnel supporting the Ukrainian National Guard and the Ministry of Internal Affairs until they Kiev came into compliance with Minsk II with its implementing legislation.
But from the beginning, Kiev made it quite clear that ''federation'' and other points that Russia kept stating was a no starter.
On February 10th, 2 days before the Normandy 4 met at Minsk, the Deputy Head of the Poroshenko Administration, Valery Chaly released these statements:
''Every decision concerning outcome of the upcoming meeting (Minsk) has been made already. Kiev unilaterally rejects all proposals for federalization, the expansion of the DNR an LNR to their administrative borders, and granting rights of broad autonomy.
The only thing that Kiev is ready to agree to is abolish duties between Russia and Donbass at their borders and indulge Donbass in the use of the Russian language.''( opednews.com/articles/Ukraine-War-Kiev-Announce-by-George-Eliason-American-Military_Americans-For-Responsible-Solutions_Conflict_Fascism-150210-764.html)
Porky again reiterated this on Feb 11 at an expanded meeting of his Cabinet of Ministers prior to the Feb 11-12 Minsk meeting:
Ukraine was, is and will be unitary, as stated by the President at the expanded meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers. ''Federalization is a seed that will not catch on in the Ukrainian soil,'' the Head of State noted.
The President has underlined the need for implementing the program of reforms and noted the top priority of decentralization.
''Decentralization elaborated by us will have nothing in common with federalization. Ukraine is a unitary state and it fully meets the interests of the Ukrainian people. More than 80% of population firmly stand for the unitary Ukraine,'' the President noted.( president.gov.ua/en/news/32228.html )
Therefore, the miserable situation is just hunky dory with the vile crazymakers Kerry and Nuland the way they are, manipulating the compliant, dysfunctional alcoholic president Porkshanks who spends most of his waking hours in an alcoholic daze. They knew from the start that Poroshenko, the parliament, and the rest of the criminal regime would sabotage Minsk II.
Noodlewoman would continue to cover for Kiev's actions and run interference, and Poroshenko got the wink he needed to commence the the first spring offensive of Kiev's military operations against Donbass in violation of the terms of the ceasefire.
That clip of ''Nuland speaks Poroshenko nods'' is priceless. It entirely iconically captures the relationship of who is boss and who is the pickled poodle. And Porkshanks does speak English, so he understood first hand what she was saying.
The rule of diplomatic protocol and etiquette is that most diplomatic business is conducted peer to peer in terms of counterpart ranks '-- head of state to head of state; head of government to head of government; top diplomat to top diplomat; junior officials to junior officials, etc. Same thing in the military '-- general to general; colonel to colonel; major to major, etc.
Secretary of State Kerry's peer is Foreign Minister Lavrov, for example. It was an unusual exception to the rule for Kerry to meet with the president of Russia, which took place at the pleasure of Putin.
In the table of organization for the US Department of State, Noodlewoman is in the 6th rank as ''Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs.'' Yet here she is, meeting ''peer to peer'' with the President of Ukraine, which just goes to show just who wears the pants between she and Porkshanks, and it's not him.
On the other hand, the Kremlin put her in her place on her jaunt to Moscow '-- from the outset she was scheduled to meet with junior officials of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
If the Minsk agreements were to be fully implemented then Putin ''wins'' because these are the very same points '-- constitutional reforms, special elections, federation, semi- or full autonomy for the Donbass republics, etc '-- that the Kremlin has been preaching in every possible forum as the only viable way to preserve Ukraine since a year ago March.
Russia needs a stable Ukraine. Europe needs a stable Ukraine. Heck, Ukraine needs a stable Ukraine.
Instead, the Ukraine parliament deliberately passed legislation this past March fully intending beforehand to disregard most of Minsk II, except for what Kiev found useful in the way of the ceasefire conditions for claims that the Novorossians were violating.
''The poison pill legislation ''is Kiev's latest maneuver '' undermining the Minsk-2 agreement with a requirement for a rebel surrender '' is likely to drive the country back into a full-scale civil war and push the US and Russia closer to a nuclear showdown.''( russia-insider.com/en/2015/03/20/4757 )
Porkshanks was revving up the bellicose rhetoric at the start of May ignoring Minsk II, spouting his intentions all along, clearly aimed at escalating the conflict. On May 1, he said that the war will end when Kiev regains Donbass and Crimea.http://tass.ru/en/world/792785
He launched new militiary ''ATO'' operations against the Donbass republics, has threatened to get Crimea back repeatedly. He most recently publicly stated to a group of military veterans at the opening of a war documentary that Kiev would get Donetsk Airport back which was fully published on the President of Ukraine website.
On May 11 Poroshenko said: ''I have no doubt - we will free the airport (in Donetsk), because it is our land. And we will rebuild the airport.''http://www.president.gov.ua/en/news/32838.html
Poroshenko violates Minsk deal vowing to recapture Donetsk Airport - Kremlin
When asked if he thinks such words violate the Minsk peace deal, the Russian president's press secretary said they do: ''Of course, they are a violation. In fact, we have repeatedly said that Ukraine is not complying with the Minsk agreement.''
The US State Secretary John Kerry, when asked by the media about Poroshenko's statements, said he knew nothing about them. [Oh, sure. It's only on the President of Ukraine's website. Who reads that?]
He said, though, that he would warn the Ukrainian President against inciting any new hostilities.
Kerry spoke at a media briefing following lengthy talks with the Russian President and Foreign Minister.(rt.com/news/257781-poroshenko-donetsk-airport-violation/ )
The Ukraine armed forces commenced shelling northern Donetsk on May 19, kicking off their Spring operations.~~~*~~~
And then there is the charming Zio-christian Ukrainian Baptist Oleksander Turchynov:
The head of Ukraine's National Security Council, Oleksandr Turchynov, said on Wednesday that Kiev is open to the stationing of NATO's ballistic missile system in its territory, adding that the missile system would help Ukraine ward off potential Russian attacks '-- from Crimea especially.
''I do not rule out that to defend ourselves from [Russia's] nuclear threat, we will have to hold consultations on deploying missile defense system components in Ukrainian territory,'' he said.http://ukrainiancrisis.net/news/10798
'...Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said Wednesday that his country is fighting a ''real war'' against Russia.
He referred to the ongoing clashes in the eastern part of Ukraine and said, ''This is not a fight with Russian-backed separatists; this is a real war with Russia.''( presstv.ir/Detail/2015/05/20/412034/Russia-Ukraine-NATO-missiles-Dmitry-Peskov-Turchynov )
Yet, the Liar-Liar-Nose-On-Fire Matzoh Dough Girl had the nerve to say at the US Embassy in Moscow that:
''There is no indication from our own information, or from my consultations in Kyiv, that anybody on the Ukrainian side, anybody in leadership '' and I spoke to President Poroshenko, I spoke to Prime Minister Yatsenyuk, I've spoken to security officials '' has any intention of launching new hostilities.
''That obviously would not be compatible with Minsk. We also made clear '' Secretary Kerry made clear to President Putin and Foreign Minister Lavrov, and I of course made clear again here today '' that any new hostilities ignited by separatist forces with Russian support would also be a violation of Minsk.''( moscow.usembassy.gov/pr_051815.html )
On May 20, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called Noodlewoman out in diplomatese:
''The United States has been involved in Ukrainian affairs for a long time, but [this involvement is] not always constructive.
''We are hoping that Washington will use its significant influence on the Kyiv authorities in the light of the Sochi negotiations to keep them from new reckless military schemes and encourage Kyiv to closely observe Minsk-2 [the agreements reached in Minsk on February 12],'' Lavrov said at a 'government hour' meeting of the Federation Council on May 20.
The most important issue in the settlement is the fulfillment of the obligation to establish direct dialogue between Kiev and Donetsk and Lugansk.(http://tinyurl.com/rbth-lavrov-Ukr-military-schem)
The assault on Donetsk came just about 5 days after Poroshenko passionately vowed to ''fight to the last drop of blood'' against what he described as ''Russian aggressors.''
Poroshenko says Minsk deal 'pseudo-peace', vows to fight to the last drop of blood(rt.com/news/258685-poroshenko-minsk-pseudo-peace/ )
Furthermore, on Germany's state-controlled ZDF network, Porky called the Minsk peace agreement a ''pseudo-peace'' deal.( heute.de/ukrainischer-praesident-poroschenko-will-kaempfen-bis-zum-letzten-blutstropfen-38431562.html )
But, but, but its all the fault of Evil Putin' and the Evil Russkies' that the Minsk agreements are failing.~~~*~~~
The fire sale of Ukraine already started:
Russia Insider: Ukraine's Lithuanian Economy Minister Selling Off Ukraine State Assets to the West - Surprise!'
''We can only make our economy more successful and dynamic by selling the assets to, preferably Western investors, who will make them more dynamic and transparent'' '-- Ukrainian-Lithuanian Aivaras Abromavicius
Amongst the first things the Lithuanian-born fund manager and investment banker Aivaras Abromavicius did following his appointment at the end of 2014 as Ukraine's new economy minister was to order a stock take of all the state-owned enterprises under his control.( russia-insider.com/en/politics/interview-ukraine-economy-minister-tightens-grip-state-companies/ri7051 )
Born in Vilnius, Lithuania, the investment banker has lived in Kyiv since 2008 and has a Ukrainian wife. Abromavicious is a partner and fund manager at the East Capital asset management group, and KathJ is wondering if his surname is possibly Jewish?
The East Capital asset management group is a major player in Ukraine, where it invested almost $100 million in 2012.
And I wonder what Hunter Biden is up to?
~~~*~~~
Sputnik News:
Ukraine's Soil Changes Hands: Foreign Investors Grabbing Arable Lands (and some of them are led by Ukrainian oligarchs)
Ukraine's rich black soil is changing hands: foreign corporations and Ukrainian tycoons continue ''grabbing'' the country's arable lands; the question remains open whether such a policy can benefit the Ukrainian people, Elizabeth Fraser stressed.'...
Ukrainian-based agricultural companies are seeking support from the West, however, their potential bankruptcy and the involvement of US and EU investors in the crisis management prompts questions about the fate of lands they hold, Elizabeth Fraser noted.
The researcher drew parallels between the Ukrainian and Romanian agricultural sector problems. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Romania's collectivized farms were dissolved and a moratorium on the sale of agricultural lands imposed. However, a number of loopholes in the state's legislation allowed Western companies to take Romania's farmland under control through bankruptcy proceedings.(sputniknews.com/europe/20150519/1022305199.html)
Last but not least, is it possible to botox Nudelman's vocal chords?
Eileen K.May 21, 2015 @ 9:24 pmSo did I, Michael.
Nudelman's an even worse liar than the Kuwaiti official's daughter who lied about babies thrown from incubators back in 1990.
Of course, the JWO was behind the violent coup d'etat in Ukraine last February. Nudelman's fat arse was right in the thick of it all.
And, Br. Nathanael, you nailed it perfectly again. You exposed Nudelman & Co for their evil actions in Ukraine and her lies about backing the Minsk accords.
As you pointed out, the USSA wasn't a signatory to those accords; only Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany were. As a signatory, the Kiev Junta is obligated to abide by Minsk 2.0's rules; and, among them is to stop shelling Donetsk or any other Novorussiyan city/town.
steviebMay 21, 2015 @ 11:58 pmRussia will never let NATO set up shop in Ukraine.
They can't let them its an act of war.
Nuland is a communist and a traitor. Backlash coming in the U.S'...
Irene Bonney FaulkesMay 22, 2015 @ 12:07 amIt seemes the camp of the Jews spreads its net far and wide even including a place where all was not won by them.
This evil camp always has its Nudelman kind of person, one who will lie, deceive, confuse and arrogantly pursue their designs on the eradication of Christianity, Whites, freedom, and nations.
They are determined to draw Russia and Putin into their war schemes with a surrender that will quickly bring in their JWO.
They continue to mount their charge against Ukraine in their thrust for a downfall of all that is decent, moral, virtuous, good, Christian and ethical.
They hope to claw their way through any Peace Treaty for the purpose of adding trillions to their already stolen wealth.
That many will suffer and die is of great consequence to them because it adds to their inhumane joy at riddance of more of earth's millions.
Such is the attitude of their lackey, Hillary Clinton who while gathering millions of dollars in the way she does, dared to laugh with glee yesterday on Television, over the deasth (murder) of Libya's Gadhafi.
Let it be known that there is another camp on earth.
It is the camp of the righteous who follow the truth of Christ.
Many have already been martyred but their cries now for vengeance are being heard on high.
How the fierce battle will end in the near future, is unknown.
What has been decided in heaven's courts is that this camp of evil will one day be no more.
Meanwhile, the fight against the forces of evil must continue.
Even in the streets of the USA, with the cross made obvious to many, Brother Nathanael still continues to fight a certain battle there.
Some will leave the camp of evil for that of good.
KathJulianeMay 22, 2015 @ 12:40 amOh, and one last thing, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Nuland, for being so in touch with the poor, downtrodden, ''vulnerable populations'' of Crimea, it's ''Tatars'' '-- not ''Tartars'' (1:32).
The Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs is a position within the American Department of State that leads the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs charged with implementing American foreign policy in Europe and Eurasia, and with advising the Under Secretary for Political Affairs on matters relating to diplomatic missions within that area.
That means, Noodlewoman, that you should at least know how to properly pronounce the name of an ethnic minority that you are so extremely concerned about as a ''vulnerable population''.
In any case, this past March, the editors of the Moscow Times, no great friend of Putin's, just flat told you in an open letter, Noodlewoman, to stop lying about Crimea.~~~*~~~
No, Crimea Is Not 'Suffering Reign of Terror' Under Russian Rule
Peter Hodson, business editor at Moscow Times
U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland last week told an influential group of U.S. senators that due to Russian actions in Ukraine, ''Crimea and parts of eastern Ukraine are suffering a reign of terror.''
Nuland, who spearheads White House policy in Eastern Europe, is persona non grata in Russia and Crimea, which Moscow annexed last year.
Perhaps because she has not talked to anyone who actually lives in Crimea, the evidence she gave to the senators was wrong.
Fear may be rife in separatist eastern Ukrainian regions that have endured months of heavy fighting and more than 5,000 deaths, but Crimea is not suffering from either war or terror.
Three reporters from The Moscow Times have visited Crimea in the last month.
More than fear, the vast majority of Crimeans feel relief that the region has escaped the violence engulfing eastern Ukraine and satisfaction that they no longer have to live in Ukraine.
The feature of local life most often stressed by Crimeans is peace, not terror. They see the conflict between eastern Ukrainian separatists and the Ukrainian army and think they dodged a bullet.
Far from an aggressor, Russia to them is a protector.
Western sanctions and a Ukrainian economic blockade have driven price inflation and damaged Crimea's vital tourism industry by cutting the number of foreign visitors.
But massive Russian subsidies pouring into Crimea have offset price rises for many by sharply raising pensions and state employee salaries. Ukraine is meanwhile suffering an even deeper economic crisis.
Nuland's use of the word ''terror'' conjures up images of Stalinist purges. Nothing similar exists. Those who do not want to live under Russian rule are free to leave, and many have.
Fleshing out her testimony in Washington, Nuland said, ''Crimea remains under illegal occupation and human rights abuses are the norm, not the exception, for many at risk groups there.'' Tatars, Ukrainians, gays, lesbians, journalists and others are at risk of persecution, she said.
There is some truth in this '-- Russia has a weak culture of minority rights and an often heavy-handed bureaucracy. But while many in these communities are disappointed, few, if any, are terrified.
The vast majority of Crimeans are Russians or half-Russians, and most of these feel less oppression and less terror than when they were governed from Kiev '-- another culture with a weak understanding of minority rights.
This majority has felt impinged by a decade of nationalist rule in Kiev that aimed to make them Ukrainian, and has felt threatened by the eruption of violence in Ukraine last year.
While sounding off about terror, Nuland ignores the fact that Crimea's accession to Russia reflects the desires of a majority of the population.
The form of Crimea's change of sovereignty may be illegal and deserve condemnation, but the substance is pure democratic justice.
This is a point rarely made in the West. Instead, Nuland-style demagoguery is stoking hawkish public opinion and driving aggressive policy in the West toward Russia, a nuclear superpower.
And while Nuland may not be talking to residents of Crimea, she is at the center of U.S.-Russia policy and the debate on arming Ukraine.
The people who will make those decisions are relying on her for information and advice.http://www.themoscowtimes.com/opinion/article/no-victoria-nuland-crimea-is-not-suffering-reign-of-terror/517433.html
Was Noodlewoman's nose growing in the clip starting at 1:23?
Mario HerreraMay 22, 2015 @ 2:03 amAlso all this Kerry, Nuland and so on now attempting to play the ''diplomatic card'', it's buying time, and related with the Donald Cook incident in the Black Sea.http://bit.ly/1c8HAXJ
Russia really gave a glimpse warning to both American and NATO. That's why the suggestion from Kerry to Porkyshenko to think twice.
SECRETARY KERRY: Well, thank you very much. I have not had a chance '' I have not read the speech. I haven't seen any context.
I have simply heard about it in the course of today. But if indeed President Poroshenko is advocating an engagement in a forceful effort at this time, we would strongly urge him to think twice not to engage in that kind of activity, that that would put Minsk in serious jeopardy.
And we would be very, very concerned about what the consequences of that kind of action at this time may be.''http://1.usa.gov/1FHcODb
JeanMay 22, 2015 @ 9:16 amTheir brutallity knows no borders, cheap, dirty, underhands, and anything more to spread their dirt.
But with Aleksandr Loekasjenko, she drive it too far as he is not to play games with.
The world needs persons who had a natural abillity to oversee what is happening and react on it. Nulant (or whatever it is) has no part in a normal world or society.
Brother NathanaelMay 22, 2015 @ 11:09 amIN CASE YOU MISSED IT'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--''As I See It (Politico Analysis), by Brother Nathanael
* Ron Paul should never have left Congress. His voice is useless now.
* Those who don't name the JEW are useless.
* Rand Paul may grovel to the Jews but the Jews despise him. They'll never let him get past 1st base, the groveling base.
* Facts are easy to come by. But truth is near impossible because that involves EXPOSING the Jew which most FEAR to do.
* Why do Goyim like Roberts and Saker FEAR the Jews? Because either their pensions are dependent on Jews or they fear losing internet reach.
* Ted Cruz may grovel to the Jews but the Jews despise him. They'll never let him get past shortstop, the super-groveling base.
* Why is Hillary the front runner? 'Cause she's thoroughly owned by the Jews. They brought her to NYC years ago and branded her: JEW OWNED.
* Why is Jeb Bush her running rival? 'Cause the Jews decided long ago that two lame choices would be the ones American dupes could vote for.
* Why so much ''cop bashing?'' The homo-looking Chris Hedges and Lew Rockwell's Jew-loving crew are at the forefront of bashing cops. Why can't they give the REAL reason for ''cop'' issues? Because that means naming the JEWS who created the ''security crisis'' with their 9/11 Mossad Inside Job.
* Why is +Brother Nathanael NOT published anywhere on the Internet except for his own Website Real Jew News and Rense.com? BECAUSE everyone else is SCARED TO DEATH of Christ-Hating, Free-Speech Hating, Democracy-Owning, WARMONGERING JEWS.
+Brother NathanaelPublisher, Real Jew News @http://realjewnews.com
Brother NathanaelMay 22, 2015 @ 11:12 amHELP ME FIGHT ON!
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The Elder of Zyklon-BMay 22, 2015 @ 12:54 pmAnother Jude and another disappearing billion via Talmudic magic.
Let's blame it on antisemitism.
''$1 Billion Scandal Involving Jewish Businessman Raises Fear of Antisemitism in Moldova''
http://www.algemeiner.com/2015/05/20/1-billion-scandal-involving-jewish-businessman-raises-fear-of-antisemitism-in-moldova/
KathJulianeMay 22, 2015 @ 1:13 pmWebster Tarpley recently visited the People's Republic of Donetsk met with officials about their progress, the struggle against Kiev armed forces, and reports his findings in this fascinating interview with Jeff Rense.
Of particular interest is:
a) all three of the former vacated MacDonalds hamburger joints will be turned into free food restaurants for the poor;b) the nationalization of resources, banks, monetary reforms & government controlled money, etc; andc) Tarpley's observation that the various reforms of socialist ''Villagism'' that the Republic of Donetsk is making closely resembles Hamilitonianism or the 19th century nationalist American System of Alexander Hamilton.
Tarpley's report entirely supports +BN's analysis, particularly the statements from the Donetsk republic officials that there can be no hope of peace in Donbass and coming to some kind of settlement with Kiev, until all foreign troops, advisors, military equipment and weapons are withdrawn, particularly Obama's shutdown of Operation Fearless Guardian of US troops (''advisers'') and support personnel on Ukraine territory.
http://tarpley.net/defend-the-revolution-against-oligarchs-fascists-neoliberals-now-taking-place-in-donetsk/
Hamiltonianism is the political principles and ideas held by or associated with Alexander Hamilton that center around a belief in a strong central government, broad interpretation of the federal constitution, encouragement of an industrial and commercial economy, and a general distrust of the political capacity or wisdom of the common man.
Hamilton has been portrayed as the ''patron saint'' of the American School of economic philosophy that, according to one historian, dominated economic policy after 1861.
He firmly supported government intervention in favor of business, after the manner of Jean-Baptiste Colbert, as early as the fall of 1781.
Hamilton opposed the British ideas of free trade, which he believed skewed benefits to colonial and imperial powers, in favor of protectionism, which he believed would help develop the fledgling nation's emerging economy.
Henry C. Carey was inspired by his writings. Hamilton influenced the ideas and work of the German Friedrich List.
In Hamilton's view, a strong executive, linked to the support of the people, could become the linchpin of an administrative republic.
Georg Friedrich List (August 6, 1789 '' November 30, 1846) was a leading 19th-century German-American economist who developed the ''National System'' or what some would call today the National System of Innovation.
List was a forefather of the German historical school of economics, and which ultimately influenced the national economic thought of Gottfried Feder.
List opposed the cosmopolitan principle in the contemporary economical system and the absolute doctrine of free trade which was in harmony with that principle, and instead developed the infant industry argument, to which he had been exposed by Hamilton and Raymond.
List gave prominence to the national idea and insisted on the special requirements of each nation according to its circumstances and especially to the degree of its development. He famously doubted the sincerity of calls to free trade from developed nations, in particular Britain:
''Any nation which by means of protective duties and restrictions on navigation has raised her manufacturing power and her navigation to such a degree of development that no other nation can sustain free competition with her, can do nothing wiser than to throw away these ladders of her greatness, to preach to other nations the benefits of free trade, and to declare in penitent tones that she has hitherto wandered in the paths of error, and has now for the first time succeeded in discovering the truth.''
Economics based on nations '-- List's theory of ''national economics'' differed from the doctrines of ''individual economics'' and ''cosmopolitan economics'' by Adam Smith and J.B. Say. List contrasted the economic behaviour of an individual with that of a nation. An individual promotes only his own personal interests but a state fosters the welfare of all its citizens.
Some of the above concerning Hamiltonianism and List's national economic theory was poached from Wikipedia's entry on Friedrich List.
Jacob RothschildMay 22, 2015 @ 2:58 pm+BN, I sure wish you could get a talk show going on the radio, the time seems right for someone of your ability.
People are just so sick and tired of all this and you sure would cause quite a storm.
Hugh BeaumontMay 22, 2015 @ 3:02 pmSecretary of State John Kerry v. His Subordinate Victoria Nuland, Regarding Ukraine
http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2015/05/secretary-of-state-john-kerry-v-his-subordinate-victoria-nuland-regarding-ukraine.html
Ukrainian parliament makes ignoring human rights official policy
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:29
The Ukrainian parliament has approved a regulation removing the obligation to protect certain human rights in the eastern Donetsk and Lugansk regions.An note accompanying the regulation states that the conduct of what Kiev calls"anti-terrorist operations" in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions is not in compliance with the country's obligations for the protection of human rights. The document, cited by Tass, also mentions an "objective necessity to take measures to repel armed aggression of the Russian Federation"prompting Ukraine"to implement a temporary derogation from its obligations to ensure certain human rights to the extent permitted by relevant international agreements."
Among the articles of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights the Ukrainian authorities can now refuse to fulfill in Eastern Ukraine are those stipulating the obligations to protect the security of citizens and their right to a fair trial, freedom of movement, choice of residence and guarantee the inviolability of people's homes.
(C) Reuters / Maxim ShemetovARCIVE PHOTO: A man walks past a garage set ablaze by what locals say was shelling by Ukrainian forces in Donetsk, September 4, 2014
Ukraine's Foreign Ministry has been instructed to notify the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Secretary General of Council of Europe Thorbjorn Jagland of the new regulation.Russian children's rights commissioner, Pavel Astakhov, said Kiev's regression on human rights violations was "humanitarian suicide."
"They have committed 'humanitarian suicide' by legally refusing to adhere to the Convention on Human Rights," Astakhov wrote on his Twitter feed on Thursday.
Kiev's decision to renege on its human rights obligations under the UN Convention comes at a time when, according to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the Ukrainian crisis is supposed to make the EU's partnership with the bloc's eastern neighbors "more important than ever."
Merkel said peace in Europe had been affected by the conflict in eastern Ukraine, stating: "Not least under these circumstances, the eastern partnership is more important than ever." She spoke in the Bundestag before joining a summit in Latvia with six of the EU's ex-Soviet neighbors.
"We will further support our eastern neighbors on their path to a society based on democracy and the rule of law," Merkel added, Reuters reported.
(C) RIA Novosti / Mikhail VoskresenskiyARCHIVE PHOTO: A house in the residential settlement Malaya Vergunka, on the outskirts of Lugansk, ruined by a Ukrainian air raid
Among the eastern partners that the German chancellor was referring to were Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia, all of whom have been looking to join the EU.The Ukrainian conflict broke out in April 2014 after Kiev sent troops to the Donetsk and Lugansk regions after local residents refused to recognize the new coup-imposed authorities in Kiev. The highly-awaited Minsk accords, brokered by Russia, Germany and France in February of this year, brought several weeks of calm to the region, but ceasefire violations by both sides have been growing, hampering the peace process. According to OSCE observers, up to 80 percent of ceasefire violations have been perpetrated by the Ukrainian army and the so-called "volunteer battalions" who are fighting alongside the Ukrainian army.
According to the UN human rights office, at least 6,116 people have been killed and 15,474 have been wounded in Eastern Ukraine during a year of fighting. The real numbers could be much higher, however.
In an interview with RT, the human rights ombudsman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, Konstantin Dolgov, described the situation in Ukraine as far as human rights are concerned as "catastrophic."
(C) RIA Novosti / Valeriy MelnikovARCHIVE PHOTO: A man going down to the basement of a building damaged during an artillery attack by the Ukrainian Security Forces in Lugansk
"Ukraine is still a country which has quite a number of political prisoners and political inmates. And this is a big problem. They have not abolished their so-called 'lustration' law, which has been criticized by the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe. [Also we should] not forget about the lack of investigations into huge crimes in Odessa and Mariupol," Dolgov said in March.Earlier this month, Moscow called on the international community to put pressure on Ukrainian authorities, which according to Russia's Foreign Ministry, are not making any "tangible steps" toward an independent and impartial investigation of last year's Odessa massacre.
On May 2, 2014, Ukrainian radicals set fire to the Trade Union House in Odessa, killing 48 and injuring over 200 anti-Kiev activists inside. "As a result of these barbaric acts of intimidation, several dozen people, whose only fault was that they openly expressed their civic stance against the anti-constitutional coup in February 2014 and outburst of radical ultranationalists, were killed," the Foreign Ministry's statement pointed out. The shocking incident received little coverage in the Western media.
Moscow urged the international community, including human rights NGOs, to "decisively and honestly" demand Kiev stage a fair investigation into the Odessa massacre and correct the "glaring flaws" in the Ukrainian judicial system.
The ministry stressed that the lack of attention given to the Odessa massacre in European and US news was "yet another manifestation of information warfare and manipulation of the media."
Edward Snowden Cheers On Rand Paul
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:24
NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden on Thursday praised Sen. Rand Paul's ten-and-a-half hour takeover of the Senate floor on Wednesday in protest of the Patriot Act.
Snowden, whose revelations about mass surveillance two years ago may finally result in reform legislation this week, said in a Reddit ''Ask Me Anything'' discussion that Paul's action ''represents a sea change from a few years ago, when intrusive new surveillance laws were passed without any kind of meaningful opposition or debate.''
Paul, who is running for the Republican presidential nomination, spent much of his time on the floor criticizing the massive surveillance regime that Snowden exposed by leaking top-secret documents to journalists.
It was all for show '-- Paul's self proclaimed ''filibuster'' (minibuster? fauxbuster?) had no practical effect on upcoming Senate votes, although it did give his presidential campaign a boost. The Senate is due to vote in the next several days on the USA Freedom Act, which passed the House overwhelmingly last week, and which would eliminate one '-- but only one '-- of the programs Snowden disclosed: the bulk collection of domestic phone records.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has said he would prefer to simply renew the three Patriot Act provisions that expire on June 1, including the one that officials say justifies the bulk collection, but he is in a small minority, and his proposal may not even come to a vote.
Snowden wrote:
Whatever you think about Rand Paul or his politics, it's important to remember that when he took the floor to say ''No'' to any length of reauthorization of the Patriot Act, he was speaking for the majority of Americans '-- more than 60% of whom want to see this kind of mass surveillance reformed or ended.
He was joined by several other senators who disagree with the Senate Majority leader's efforts to sneak through a reauthorization of what courts just weeks ago declared was a comprehensively unlawful program, and if you notice that yours did not take to the floor with him, you should call them right now (1-920-END-4-215) and ask them to vote against any extension of the Patriot Act, because the final vote is being forced during the dark of a holiday weekend to shield them from criticism.
Snowden, who appeared on Reddit from Moscow, shared the online discussion with ACLU Deputy Director Jameel Jaffer.
In response to one commenter who noted that Paul was his senator, Snowden wrote:
If Paul is your Senator, then Mitch McConnell is also from your state. He's the one spearheading the effort to reauthorize the same program the Second Circuit just ruled is unlawful.
Don't send an email, make his phone ring. (ACLU tells me you can get your senator from any phone via 1-920-END-4-215)
Snowden urged readers ''to correct misinformation whenever you see this topic being debated.'' He even supplied his own bullet points:
Supporters of mass surveillance say it keeps us safe. The problem is that that's an allegation, not a fact, and there's no evidence at all to support the claim. In fact, a White House review with unrestricted access to classified information found that not only is mass surveillance illegal, it has never made a concrete difference in even one terrorism investigation.Some claim the Senate should keep Section 215 of the Patriot Act (which will be voted on in two days) because we need ''more time for debate,'' but even in the US, the public has already decided: 60% oppose reauthorization. This unconstitutional mass surveillance program was revealed in June 2013 and has been struck down by courts twice since then. If two years and two courts aren't enough to satisfy them, what is?A few try to say that Section 215 is legal. It's not. Help them understand.The bottom line is we need people everywhere '-- in the US, outside the US, and especially within their own communities '-- to push back and challenge anybody defending these programs. More than anything, we need to ordinary people to make it clear that a vote in favor of the extension or reauthorization of mass surveillance authorities is a vote in favor of a program that is illegal, ineffective, and illiberal.Asked if he thought the government might continue with the collection of bulk phone records despite losing what it says is its legal authority for doing so, Snowden replied:
There are always reasons to be concerned that regardless of the laws passed, some agencies in government (FBI, NSA, CIA, and DEA, for example, have flouted laws in the past) will miscontrue the intent of Congress in passing limiting laws '-- or simply disregard them totally. For example, the DOJ's internal watchdog, the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) released a report claiming, among other abuses, that it could simply refuse to tell government oversight bodies what exactly it was doing, so the legality or illegality of their operations simply couldn't be questioned at all.
However, that's no excuse for the public or Congress to turn a blind eye to unlawful or immoral operations '-- and the kind of mass surveillance happening under Section 215 of the Patriot Act right now is very much unlawful: the Courts ruled just two weeks ago that not only are these activities illegal, but they have been since the day the programs began.
And asked if, during his now-famous interview with John Oliver, Oliver had really handed him a ''picture of his junk'' (you simply must watch the segment, if you haven't already), Snowden replied with a unicode emoticon known as a ''Lenny Face'':
Photo: Imgur
(This post is from our blog: Unofficial Sources.)
Flash: this is the first public threat that the US has ever issued to Saudi regime
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:21
"Their covert'--presumably'--pursuit of a nuclear program would greatly strain the relationship they've got with the United States."
House Passes Asteroid Mining Bill, Senate Must Fix It
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:20
WASHINGTON D.C. '-- Today, the House of Representatives passed legislation recognizing property rights in resources extracted from asteroids, and non-interference rights to asteroid mining operations. H.R. 1508, the Space Resource Exploration and Utilization Act, was subsumed into HR 2262, the SPACE Act of 2015, without amendment. The SPACE Act passed the House by a vote of 284-133.
''Recognizing effective space property rights now is essential to driving investment in the technologies and businesses that will open the space frontier,'' said Berin Szoka, President of TechFreedom. ''This legislation is a good start but this cause is too important to rush. Had the House held hearings on HR 1508, it would have produced a better bill that would have protected property rights in all space resources, not only those extracted from asteroids, and that would have avoided any potential conflict with international law. The Senate should indeed pass space property rights legislation, but only after carefully reconsidering the approach taken in the House bill.''
''International law doesn't bar space property rights; understood properly, it actually requires them,'' explained James Dunstan, Principal at Mobius Legal Group and a TechFreedom adjunct fellow. ''The Outer Space Treaty of 1967 protects the right to explore and use space, free of interference. The U.S. and U.S.S.R. established the principle that, once moved, space resources may be owned. Congress needs to codify both principles and provide effective enforcement tools. But any legislation must balance these rights against other rights created by the Treaty, including to 'free access to all areas of celestial bodies.' Failing to balance these rights adequately could create overly expansive 'bright line' zones that could amount to land grabs strictly prohibited by the Treaty.''
Szoka and Dunstan proposed eight amendments to HR 1508 in a letter sent to the bill's sponsors earlier this week. They can be reached for comment at media@techfreedom.org. Both are long-time space lawyers; Dunstan has practiced space law for over thirty years. See more of their work on space property rights, including:
''Space Property Rights, the Next Frontier in Bipartisan Legislation?,'' a statement from TechFreedom''Space Property Rights: It's Time, and Here's Where to Start,'' an op-ed by Berin Szoka in Space News''How the U.S. Can Lead the Way to Extraterrestrial Land Deals,'' an op-ed by Berin Szoka and James Dunstan in Wired''Space Law: Is Asteroid Mining Legal?,'' an op-ed by Berin Szoka and James Dunstan in Wired
Six earthquakes rattle parts of San Diego, California
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:19
U.S. Geological Survey map shows the location of the six earthquakes in the Salton Sea.
A series of six earthquakes ranging in magnitude from 2.8 to 4.1 rattled the Imperial County city of Calipatria and were felt in the San Diego area Wednesday night.All the earthquakes occurred near the southern edge of the Salton Sea. The strongest, a magnitude-4.1, occurred at 8:15 p.m., about 10 miles northwest of Westmorland.
The first earthquake was reported at 8:18 p.m., and the last at 10:06 p.m., according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
The epicenter for five of the six earthquakes was about eight miles north north-west of Calipatria.
The magnitude-4.1, which occurred at a depth of five-eighths of a mile, was felt in parts of San Diego, La Mesa and Alpine, U-T San Diego reported.
Two of the earthquakes had a magnitude of 3.3. The first, at 8:51 p.m., occurred at a depth of 1.8 miles, and the second, at 10:06 p.m., was at ground level, according to the USGS.
City News Service
George Soros, NATO and the Western Color Revolution in Macedonia
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:15
(C) Unknown
With tensions heating up between the United States and Russia over a number of issues - Ukraine, BRICS, sanctions, and NATO encirclement to name a few - the West continues its move in toward Russia's borders. The latest target in the Anglo-American destabilization campaign has now come forward - Macedonia.In the attempt to destroy the elected government of Macedonia, George Soros, NATO, and the Western Color Revolution apparatus have all come together to ensure that the will of the Macedonian people is denied as is the will of populations in all Western-style democracies.
As informed observers might well suspect, any color revolution taking place in Eastern Europe will involve the heavy hand of George Soros.
George Soros is most well-known for playing a major role in the funding and facilitating of the "Bulldozer Revolution" in Serbia that overthrew Slobodan Milosevic in 2000, Georgia's "Rose Revolution" of 2003, the 2006 push to move Turkey toward a more Islamist governing structure, and even the Occupy movement in the United States among a great many others - none of which brought anything other than greater misery, impoverishment, and police state mechanisms to bear on the general public. The Occupy movement, being the only exception, still brought nothing to its participants except the opportunity to burn off excess anger and energy along with a few cracked protester skulls. It was otherwise an incredible waste of time.
In addition, George Soros has been heavily involved in the social unrest and movement-wrecking activity that has taken place all across the United States in recent months. From Florida to Ferguson and then on to Baltimore, George Soros' Foundations have been involved in making sure that not only are American citizens unable to overcome racial divisions with mutual cooperation but that even the racially isolated participants are unable to accomplish anything of substance.
In Macedonia, like in the United States, Soros organizations work under the pretense of left cover. In other words, Soros NGOs fund and operate organizations and movements that are seen as Left in nature but are, in reality, revolutionary organizations designed to push a political agenda, change Macedonian culture, install puppet regimes, and ultimately serve the purpose of the Anglo-American oligarchy.
George Soros'most well-known NGO is the Open Society Institute, is highly active in Macedonia and itself works with a plethora of "civil society organizations" throughout the country that function as the OSI (and hence the West's) tentacles in Macedonian society. This is what has prompted some in Macedonia to say in regards to Soros that "Soros came into Macedonia like a Trojan horse, and now he is an octopus."
The OSI has been active in Macedonia for some time, with Vladimir Milcin heading the organization for nearly twenty years. Milcin was a former police informant in the days of Communism. Milcin was instrumental in ratting out a dissident actor Risto Siskov.
The Soros networks in Macedonia are extremely powerful. As Jay Nordlinger reported for the National Review after having traveled to Macedonia,
In America for the past many years, we have had a plethora of Soros-funded groups: MoveOn.org, Media Matters, the Center for American Progress, etc. Macedonia has its rough equivalents. But they mean more in Macedonia than the Soros-funded groups do in America. Back home, we have a zillion conservative groups to counter the Soros groups. The Left has its billionaires, we have ours. You hit me with Soros? Okay, I'll hit you with a Koch or two. In Macedonia, I'm told, there is no tradition of donating money to a cause. There aren't think tanks and activist groups and the rest on the right. So, the "Sorosoids" own the field.
While this may be a bit of an exaggeration - the Right clearly has its own agents of control and dissemination - it is clearly true that the Soros influence extends far beyond being able to drive public opinion through clever networking ideas. Indeed, through a much tighter grasp upon media outlets themselves, Soros is vastly more influential in the way that news and events are reported than in other locations, even those located in Eastern Europe.That being said, it should be pointed out that Macedoniannews outlets like Telma and 24 Vestiare both major players in promoting the anti-government protests (in addition to other operations). Both of these outlets are funded by George Soros.
Indeed, even "opposition leader" Zoran Zaev is a notorious Soros-funded agent with close connections to the CIA. Not only Zaev, but his entire Social Democratic Union of Macedonia (SDSM) party (the former Communist party) has been entirely taken over by the Soros machine. As Wayne Madsen writes,
Zaev and [Radmila] Sekerinska are said by Macedonian insiders to be nothing more than fronts for former Prime Minister and President Branko Crvenkovski who continues to head up the SDSM and accept large amounts of largesse from such CIA NGO laundry operations as the National Democratic Institute (NDI), National Endowment for Democracy (NED), Freedom House, and Soros's Open Society Institute (OSI) to foment a themed revolution against Gruevksi's right-of-center VMRO-DPMNE government.
It is also a known fact that the OSI receives are large amount of money from the US State Department's USAID.
Interestingly enough, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, Victoria Nuland, has been charged by Macedonian intelligence of conspiring with Zaev of the SDSM.Wayne Madsen further describes the role of Victoria Nuland by writing:
The unapologetic foul-mouthed Nuland met on the side of the 51st Munich Security Conference in Germany with Macedonian Foreign Minister Nikola Poposki and President Gjorge Ivanov to express her displeasure at Gruevski's insurrection charges against her friend Zaev and his SDSM co-conspirators. Earlier, Nuland had offered to mediate a long-standing dispute between Greece and Macedonia over the latter's use of the name Macedonia, which some Greeks consider to be a solely Greek name. Macedonian observers viewed Nuland's interest in the name dispute to be a trap that would enable a pro-U.S. government, along with the Zionist and global banker baggage that comes with any such themed>> coup d'etat, to seize power in Skopje. Nuland and her co-conspirators were hoping for a replay of Kiev in what can be termed Kiev Version 2.0.>>
Nuland and her co-conspirators in Skopje are alarmed over the speed at which the Macedonian security services rounded up the coup plotters. Macedonian police, in raids conducted in Skopje and Veles, seized five laptop computers, three desktop computers, 19 mobile phones, 100 CDs and DVDs, 17 hard disks, and 9 savings deposit books used by the coup plotters, including a number linked to Soros-financed NGOs. The bank accounts of the plotters reportedly were flush with healthy cash deposits from the CIA as the date of the planned coup approached.
The use of social media by the Soros/CIA coup plotters should come as no surprise. Social media served at the very core of the themed revolutions sponsored by the CIA and Soros twice in Ukraine (Orange Revolution and Euro-Maidan uprising), Jasmine Revolution (Tunisia), Lotus Revolution (Egypt), Rose Reviolution (Georgia), Tulip Revolution (Kyrgyszstan), and Green Revolution (Iran). In the case of Macedonia, there are clear indications that the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL) Thomas Melia, responsible for DRL's work in Europe, including Russia, as well as the Middle East and North Africa, conspired directly with Zaev to mount a coup against the Gruevski government. Melia is the former deputy director of Freedom House, a Cold War-era neoconservative bevvy of U.S. war hawks based in New York. Although founded in 1941 by such progressives as Eleanor Roosevelt, Ralph Bunche, journalist Dorothy Thompson, novelist Rex Stout (creator of Nero Wolfe), and Republican presidential candidate Wendell Willkie (who would be considered by today's Republicans in the U.S. as a stark-raving liberal), Freedom House has devolved into a neoconservative chatter source having employed as their board members in recent years such war hawk cretins as Paul Wolfowitz, Ken Adelman, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Donald Rumsfeld, and Otto Reich. Freedom House has been caught red-handed funneling CIA money to opposition groups in Iran, Sudan, Russia, and China. In essence, Freedom House, like Soros's NGOs, serves as a conduit for CIA support for rebellious opposition forces in dozens of countries around the world, countries that now include Macedonia, as well as Hungary, Venezuela, Syria, Egypt, Serbia, Jordan, Mexico, and Cuba.
In addition, it has been reported by a number of media outlets, most notably the Russian and Macedonian press, that George Soros has tapped into the Canvas network, enlisting the organization to "help" in Macedonian protests.According to Macedonia Online,
Canvas members have managed to get themselves permanently banned from ever entering Russia, but they are welcome in the Macedonian capital. Soros Open Society Institute and the CIA via its fronts (PNAC, NED, USAid) have hired Canvas to do work in Macedonia. Canvas issued a memo to Macedonian students (three weeks prior to protests) that they would award the two best protest ideas with $1,500.
The ideas were sent to Sonja Ismail, daughter of Guner Ismail, a popular SDSM member and official.
Macedonia Online further describes the Canvas organization by stating the following:The gang pretending to be NGOs and trained to overthrow Governments and stage Coups around the world is paying $1,500 for ideas how to better organize demonstrations, reports Vecer.
That gang is Soros' Open Society Institute, USAid (Front for the CIA) and the Forum Group (another Soros "NGO"). This group has already backed and financed not just the Macedonian opposition SDSM, but their activists & protests, dating back to 2011.
Serbian based Canvas led by Srgja Popovic who specializes in demonstrations has been hired both by Soros and the CIA to "help" in Macedonia. Canvas has gained quite the notoriety. Namely, the UAE has listed Canvas in the same ranks as Al-Qaeda, it is the only non-muslim terrorist organization!
Canvas and Srgja Popovic were instrumental in bringing chaos to Ukraine (look at Ukraine today) and in removing Egypt's Hosni Mubarak from power (look at Egypt now).
[...]
Canvas first earned its notoriety for bringing down Milosevic. But it didn't stop there. Canvas was repeatedly hired by the CIA to organize protests in Gruzia, Moldavia, the Maldives, Lebanon, Egypt, Ukraine.... Canvas first appeared in Macedonia in 2009, when it became apparent the SDSM will be in opposition once again. The thug for hire himself Srgja Popovic was present in Ohrid to christen the opening of a "Canvas Academy" where future protesters and activists would be trained and be called upon when the time is right.
Who was the financier of this academy? USAID and Soros. Soros employees Gjuner Ismail and Sasho Ordanovski were the promoters.
"Students were paid and agrgresively trained on how to protest in December of 2014 and January of 2015. Srgja Popovic himself showed up and met with Zaev in March, April and early May 2015. On May 6th Canvas (SDSM) activists violently attacked policemen, injuring 38", reported Vecer.
Canvas was heavily involved in the death of Russian opposition leader Nemtsov, just few days before the opposition protest. The goal was to destabilize the situation, create internal conflict. But most Russian saw through the orchestrated murder for what it was, an ordered hit. When one takes into account the wife of Canvas' leader worked at Stratfor (another CIA front), then things become clear, says Vecer.
Prior to Canvas, Serbia had another group created by undercover NGOs. It was called "Otpor", financed by Freedom House, another front for the CIA. Even the UN investigated Freedom House for their ties to the CIA. Members of Otpor have today joined the ranks of Canvas.
Macedonia Online only echoes a report written by Tony Cartalucci of Land Destroyer Report in 2011 entitled "CIA Coup-College," where Cartalucci exposed Canvas by writingAfter its success, Serbia's Otpor would continue receiving funds from the West and become a "CIA-coup college" of sorts, under the name CANVAS, or "Center for Applied Non-Violent Action and Strategies." It appears that after the Egyptian April 6 Youth Movement finished attending the US State Department funded confab in New York City in 2008, it would make a trip to visit CANVAS in 2009. From there, it took CANVAS's "curriculum" and apparently their logo, and began assembling a US-funded mob in Egypt.
Amongst CANVAS's current "partners" are the Albert Einstein Institution, Freedom House, and the International Republican Institute (IRI). The IRI includes amongst its board of directors John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Brent Scowcroft. When John McCain says "We should have seen this coming," in regards to the unrest in Egypt, he obviously isn't talking about himself since he helped make it happen.
[...]
A final note to consider is that CANVAS is on record in Foreign Policy magazine's article "Revolution U," assisting the "Rose Revolution" of Georgia, the "Orange Revolution" of the Ukraine, and is currently working with networks from Belarus, Myanmar (Burma) and 50 other countries. Taking a look at their activities and the overall globalist agenda, it is clear they are involved in regime change that will directly assist the globalists in their encirclement of Russia and China.
The unrest taking place across Macedonia over the last few months and currently bringing tens of thousands of Macedonians out into to the streets is the result of the deployment of the Western-engineered color revolution apparatus designed to destabilize and overthrown the Macedonian government, who has agreed to work with Russia to build the Balkan Stream pipeline through the country. This color revolution, created and deployed by Western governments, NATO, and the Soros networks of NGOs, Foundations, and "civil society groups" is an attempt to remove any leverage Russia may have over the EU and to expand the hegemony of the world oligarchy.We must support the Macedonian people in their resistance to this color revolution and oppose such illegal and unjust intervention here at home.
Armenia, Belarus refuse to sign EU-Eastern Partnership due to its stance on Crimea
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:15
(C) Sputnik / Konstantin Chalabov
Armenia and Belarus refused to sign a joint declaration of the EU-Eastern Partnership summit as long as the text called Crimea's reunification with Russia an "illegal annexation," Reuters reported, citing unnamed diplomatic sources.Crimea became an integral part of Russia after the March 2014 referendum, in which an overwhelming majority (96 percent) of the voters backed reunification.
"Armenia and Belarus' behavior is logical" since both countries voted at the UN against the resolution condemning Crimea's reunification with Russia, a source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, noted. "They are keeping their line and we keep ours," the source added.
The text is expected to be changed so that all participants would be able to sign it. But that process is not smooth.
Earlier, Vladimir Chizhov, Russia's envoy to the EU, described the work on the text of the joint declaration as challenging, adding that some countries want others to adopt a more rigid stance towards Russia, while others stand up against that.
The two-day EU-Eastern Partnership summit kicks off in the Latvian capital of Riga on May 21. The initiative, launched in 2009, is aimed at establishing closer ties between the European Union and former Soviet republics, including Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine.
Armenia and Belarus opted for deepening cooperation with Moscow. Both countries are part of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), established on January 1, 2015. The union envisages a free flow of goods, services, capital and labor across its member countries.
The Union also aims at establishing a single economic market from the European Union to China.
Canada's dumb plan to make boycotting Israel a hate crime is racist and undemocratic
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:14
(C) Getty ImagesCanadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper gives a speech after being presented with an honorary doctorate from the Tel Aviv University by Tel Aviv University President, Prof. Yosef Klafter (unseen) on January 22, 2014
I've never been keen on boycotts. The one against Italy for invading Abyssinia didn't work. Nor did the arms blockade on Spain. I'm still not sure that boycotting South Africa really brought down apartheid. I rather suspect that the old racists simply realised they were hopelessly outnumbered by the blacks of South Africa and that the game was up.And I'm still unconvinced that boycotting Israel, even though it frightens the right-wing crazies in Benjamin Netanyahu's government, will achieve a two-state solution, human rights for Palestinians, etc. I'm free to refuse to buy products from Jewish colonies in occupied Arab land (I do not buy them), but, when I visit Israel, I stay at the King David Hotel in west Jerusalem, visit the Tel Aviv gallery of art and buy Israeli-published books. Some Israeli academics support a boycott of their own country. They may be right in doing so.
But in Canada - and I had to literally rub my eyes when I read this - the totally pro-Israeli Conservative government of Stephen Harper intends to list the boycotting of Israel as a "hate crime". This is not only ludicrous, stupid, pointless and racist because it assumes that anyone opposed to Israel's vicious and iniquitous policies of land-grabbing in the West Bank is an anti-Semite, but it is also anti-democratic. Those who believe in non-violence have always espoused boycott movements on the grounds that economic pressure rather than bombs is a moral way of putting pressure on a country that violates international law.
Yet Harper, who would surely be elected to the Knesset if he were an Israeli, went so far as to suggest on a recent visit to Jerusalem that merely to criticise Israel can be a form of anti-Semitism. The newly retired Canadian Foreign minister John Baird (normally a fairly sane guy) has described Canada's Boycott Israel movement as "the new face of anti-Semitism". In January, he actually signed an official agreement with Israel to fight the Boycott Israel organisation, known locally as the BDS (Boycott, Divest and Sanction) group. Steven Blaney, who rejoices in the title of Canada's "Minister of Public Safety", says that boycotts of Israel cannot be separated from anti-Semitic hate speech and the recent attacks against Jews in France.
This is preposterous. If I decline to buy Israeli-produced oranges at a British supermarket, this doesn't make me a Nazi murderer. To criticise Israel doesn't turn Canadians into Jew-haters. A number of liberal Jewish groups have protested against Harper's proposed extension of existing 'hate laws' - far too many Jewish organisations have praised it - on the grounds that it assumes that all Jews support Israel or approve of its actions. And since Jews are also members of boycott-Israel groups, Harper's expanded definition of the law would have to put Jews on trial in Canada for anti-Semitism.
Cloaked as usual in the kind of Blairite (and Cameronite) clich(C)s that all law-and-order politicians adopt, Canadians are told that their government will show "zero tolerance" towards groups advocating a boycott of Israel. Of course, we show "zero tolerance" on the streets towards theft, mugging and gangland thuggery. But "zero tolerance" against those who wish to boycott a nation whose army slaughtered more than 2,000 Palestinians in Gaza last year, more than half of them civilians? Really? It was significant, I thought, that, after the killing of a Canadian soldier outside the Ottawa parliament by a Muslim last year and a murderous attack on Canadian servicemen, Harper publicised the message of condolence he had received from Netanyahu, as if the commiserations of a man who ordered the bombardment of Gaza were something to be proud of.
The dark little catch in all this is that last year Canada changed its definition of hate speech to include statements made against "national origin", not just race and religion. Thus statements or speeches critical of Israel - like a number of public lectures I have given in Canada - may now be classed as statements against Jews (even though Jews are often among the organisers of my own speaking engagements in America). And, in due course, editorials in papers such as the Toronto Star can be deemed anti-Semitic and thus worthy of being denounced as a "hate-crime".
This extended definition of 'hate crime' will put a lot of civil society groups under the cosh. The United Church of Canada and Canadian Quakers could find themselves in court and judges, however much they personally recoiled from Israel's abuse of Palestinians, would have to abide by this outrageous piece of legislation and exercise "zero tolerance" against the free speech of those who condemn war crimes by Israel in the Middle East.
It is worth remembering that tens of thousands of Jews throughout the world, and especially in America and Poland, called for a boycott of Nazi Germany in 1933 for the very anti-Semitic acts that led directly to the Holocaust. American diplomats were critical, lest it provoked Hitler to even crueller deeds. But they didn't threaten the protesters with "zero tolerance" of "hate crimes" because of the "national origin" of the Germans they proposed to boycott.
In the end, of course, it's quite simple. Boycotting a state for its crimes is a non-violent but potentially powerful way to express moral outrage at a time when political statements - or cowardly governments like that of Stephen Harper - fail to represent the anger of voters or have any effect on a state that ignores international law. If you take that away, then the Boston bomber, now facing the execution chamber, can say that his was the only way.
Former deputy chief of staff for Yanukovych to sue the European Commission
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:14
(C) Flickr / Rae Allen
The former deputy chief of staff of ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych is to front the European Court of Justice, suing the European Commission for a range of sanctions imposed against him, which saw him banned from entering the EU, and some of his assets frozen.Andrey Portnov, whose sanctions imposed by the EC were lifted in March, is taking European officials to court, arguing that he shouldn't have been sanctioned and penalised in the first place, while warning that Ukraine's current government should be concerned about prosecution for malpractice.
Portnov was one of 22 officials, including former Ukrainian President Yanukovuch, who was banned from entering the EU, and who had assets in European Union member states frozen.
The reasoning behind the 28 member states' decision to impose sanctions on the officials was because they were "subject to criminal proceedings in Ukraine to investigate crimes in connection with the embezzlement of Ukrainian state funds and their illegal transfer outside Ukraine."
In other words, Yanukovych, Portnov and others were accused of misappropriating Ukrainian state funds for personal use.
Where's the Money? Questions Raised Over Fraud Investigations
Despite the allegations against Andrey Portnov and others, there has been little evidence backing the accusations that these funds were acquired by illegal and corrupt means.
The Ukrainian Prosecutor's Office claims to have identified $15 billion (300-billion hryvnia worth of assets misappropriated by senior officials, and says that Ukrainian authorities have managed to freeze about $1.4 billion of this.
However, despite the large figures of allegedly misappropriated funds, only a tiny amount of about $250 has been confiscated so far.
The investigators' lack of success in proving the funds were illegally embezzled and smuggled out of the country has drawn into question the legitimacy of the sanctions and asset freezing measures imposed on officials connected to the former Ukrainian government.
"The arrest [of assets] looks beautiful for the media, for support, and as a public relations stunt, but has no correlation with the real result," Vitaliy Shabunin, head of the Anti-corruption Action Center, a nongovernmental organization specializing in anti-corruption investigations and asset tracing, told Radio Free Europe.
Ukrainian law states that assets can only be recovered and confiscated if an official has been convicted of an economic crime, sparking questions about when, or if any senior officials will be prosecuted in relation to the allegations.A 'Politically Intended Criminal Prosecution'
Despite having his sanctions lifted, Andrey Portnov says he is determined to take the case to the European Court of Justice and make a stand against what he believes was the illegal imposing of sanctions on himself and others.
"Very soon, I am not only going to prove that the actions of the Ukrainian authorities were illegal but also a breach of European standards by those in the European Union who used the information provided by the Ukrainian authorities."
In an open letter to the EU in January, appealing for his sanctions to be overturned, Portnov said he was determined to "restore my reputation" '-- labeling the accusations of money embezzlement as a "politically intended criminal prosecution by the Ukrainian police authorities by falsification of criminal case files and spreading false accusations against me."
He also said that attention should be paid to the financial activities of members of the current Ukrainian government, accusing officials of embezzling money overseas themselves."I think that the Ukrainian authorities, starting with government members and finishing with the president, need to watch their own Internet banking closely," Portnov told RTE. "What offshore accounts are they using? How are they signing agreements in offshore jurisdictions?
"When the time comes, we will find the assets the current government is hiding abroad, and it will be the subject of a criminal prosecution," he said.
Putin's Macedonian Gambit
Fri, 22 May 2015 22:03
Macedonia, a small, impoverished Balkan state, has appeared in the newspapers lately, which it seldom does outside of Southeastern Europe. Macedonia was the only Yugoslav republic to escape the collapse of Tito's federation in the early 1990's without bloodshed, but its history since then has been a tale of woes. As everywhere in the Balkans, crime, corruption and ethnic politicking have rendered Macedonia a less than fully functional state, and all-out war between the Slavic Macedonian majority and the Albanian minority was narrowly averted in 2001. Diplomatic intervention by NATO and the EU cooled heads and a bloody conflagration was headed off, but only just.
Now Macedonia is in turmoil again. Earlier this month, a massive cross-border raid led to the deaths of eight policemen and fourteen terrorists, said by the government in Skopje to be Albanian radicals who infiltrated the border city of Kumanovo to perpetrate mass murder. The country's fragile ethnic balance has been thrown into chaos by the spectacular raid, the actual events of which remain shrouded in a good deal of mystery, in best Balkan fashion.
Macedonia has a long history of such never-solved major crimes. Back in 1995, President Kiro Gligorov, who got his country independence without bloodshed, was seriously injured by a car bomb, yet nobody was ever charged in the spectacular crime, though most Balkan spy-watchers detected more than a whiff of shadowy networks controlled by UDBA, Tito's nasty secret police, behind the assassination attempt.
Similarly, it seems safe to expect that the real story behind the Kumanovo raid will remain shrouded in mystery, as some wish. In the absence of evidence, rumors have spread like wildfire. Most Slavic Macedonians attribute the attack to Albanian radicals bent on creating Greater Albania to include western Macedonia '-- it doesn't help that some Albanian politicians state their goal openly '-- while most Albanians believe the raid was a ''false flag'' operation by Skopje to discredit them. Since false flag terrorism really does happen in the Balkans, it's difficult to say with any certainty what really transpired in Kumanovo.
It should be noted that the Kumanovo atrocity was exceptionally well timed for Skopje, where the beleaguered government of Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski is facing mass protests against crime and corruption during his near-decade in power. Confronted with public outrage, Gruevski has retreated into ethnic politics, per standard Balkan practice. On cue, the Kremlin has backed Skopje, suddenly remembering that they represent Russia's Slavic Orthodox ''brothers,'' with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov bluntly stating this week, ''The events in Macedonia are blatantly controlled from the outside.''
According to the Kremlin, Macedonia is being lined up by the Americans and NATO to be the next ''color revolution'' which, like the alleged ''coup'' in Kyiv early last year, will install a pro-Western government in power against the (alleged) popular will. It must be said that, as in Ukraine, Moscow is lining itself up with a coalition of corrupt cronies that, if widespread Balkan rumors are to be believed, is tracking to fall from power, and soon. The recent resignation of top officials, including Macedonia's interior minister and intelligence chief, over revelations of their deep corruption has been taken as a bad sign by most impartial observers.
Never wanting to miss a crisis that could be geopolitically useful, the Kremlin has dispatched numerous ''diplomats'' '-- in reality, Russian intelligence officers '-- to their embassy in little Skopje, and they have been busy disseminating disinformation aimed at maligning the West and Macedonians who want a less corrupt government. A popular Russian rumor is that the Kumanovo terrorists were, in reality, American and British special forces who infiltrated Macedonia from the NATO base in Kosovo, Camp Bondsteel. Of course there is no evidence for this fairytale but that only makes it more popular among Macedonians who like spooky conspiracies.
Upping the ante in Kremlin Active Measures, to use the proper Chekist term, is a new piece in the right-wing Macedonian outlet Fakti by the Russian political strategist Sergei Markov, which posits a grand conspiracy theory about Western manipulation of recent Macedonian events. The root issue, he explains, is pipeline politics being orchestrated by the Americans and the Europeans, and Western intelligence is pulling the strings behind anti-government protests in Skopje, while NATO spy agencies were behind the Kumanovo terrorist raid. There is no evidence for any of this, but Markov goes one step further and explicitly fingers the National Security Agency and its partner the BND, Germany's foreign intelligence service, as the culprits behind the nefarious destabilization of Macedonia. Thanks to the Snowden Operation that Moscow has orchestrated over the last couple years, NSA is now the all-purpose boogeyman for Kremlin agitprop, though as the former technical director for NSA's Balkan operations, I'm confident in stating that nobody at Fort Meade is ''really'' behind Macedonia's grave crisis.
The Kremlin's hand behind this Active Measure is revealed by the author of this hit-piece. Sergei Markov is not, as one might suspect, a tinfoil-hatted conspiracy monger, some sort of Russian Alex Jones webcasting from his basement. Instead, he is a very prominent Moscow academic and politician who just happens to be the guy Putin drags out to sound scholarly when propagating absurd Kremlin lies. He has denied that Moscow had anything to do with the assassination of FSB defector Sasha Litvinenko in London, while Tallinn has fingered him as a suspect in the massive 2007 cyber-attacks on Estonia; as a result, he has been banned from that country, and Ukraine has done the same over Markov's vicious anti-Ukrainian statements. He has recently warned of deep Russophobia in Stockholm, threatening that Russia may start World War III if Moscow feels ''backed into a corner'' '-- by Sweden.
Moscow's equally outlandish talking points in Macedonia have been made clear by Professor Markov. I explained a few weeks ago that Putin's Kremlin has initiated a secret offensive in the Balkans, in both Bosnia and Macedonia, using Special War to open up another front as Europe slides towards greater crisis and perhaps wider war. Appealing to Slavic Orthodox ''brothers'' in Southeastern Europe, while sending spies and cash to stir up trouble, is a surefire way to exacerbate ethnic tensions in already damaged societies, but Moscow does not care about consequences. Russia seeks to cause problems for NATO and the EU in the Balkans, and it is doing so successfully. Shattering the fragile settlements of the Wars of Yugoslav Succession in the 1990's, maintained with difficulty by the West, will be easy for the Russians. That the cost of this dirty and unnecessary war will be borne by innocent people in Southeastern Europe is no concern of Vladimir Putin's.
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Home | Dying to Know
Fri, 22 May 2015 21:51
''The idea of anything that expands our thinking beyond conventional borders has always been of interest to me. When I see the living, breathing portraits of these characters, especially the early archival footage... To see them intelligent and smart '' they were a kind of blessing considering how they have been caricatured in later times. I like what this film explores and I'm glad to be a part of it."
Presidential Proclamation - National Maritime Day, 2015
Fri, 22 May 2015 21:49
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
May 20, 2015
NATIONAL MARITIME DAY, 2015
- - - - - - -
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
For over two centuries, proud mariners have set sail in defense of our people and in pursuit of opportunity. Through periods of conflict and times of peace, our Nation has relied on the United States Merchant Marine to transport goods to and from our shores and deliver troops and supplies around the world. On National Maritime Day, we honor the women and men who take to the seas to boost our economy and uphold the values we cherish.
Our Nation is forever indebted to the brave privateers who helped secure our independence, fearlessly supplying our Revolutionary forces with muskets and ammunition. Throughout history, their legacy has been carried forward by courageous seafarers who have faithfully served our Nation as part of the United States Merchant Marine -- bold individuals who emerged triumphant in the face of attacks from the British fleet in the War of 1812, and who empowered the Allied forces as they navigated perilous waters during World War II. Today, patriots who share their spirit continue to stand ready to protect our seas and the livelihoods they support.
Ninety percent of the world's commerce moves by sea, and businesses across our country rely on domestic and international trade every day. Helping to protect our vital shipping routes, Merchant Mariners are critical to our effort to combat piracy and uphold the maritime security on which the global supply chain relies. And in times of war or national emergency, they bolster our national security as a "fourth arm of defense." Whether transporting commercial goods or military equipment, battling tough weather or enemy fire, they strive and sacrifice to secure a brighter future for all Americans. On this day, we reaffirm the importance of their contributions and salute all those who serve this noble cause.
The Congress, by a joint resolution approved May 20, 1933, has designated May 22 of each year as "National Maritime Day," and has authorized and requested the President to issue annually a proclamation calling for its appropriate observance.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 22, 2015, as National Maritime Day. I call upon the people of the United States to mark this observance and to display the flag of the United States at their homes and in their communities. I also request that all ships sailing under the American flag dress ship on that day.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twentieth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-ninth.
BARACK OBAMA
Need more destruction: Pentagon's new multibillion dollar arms contracts with Israel and Saudi Arabia
Fri, 22 May 2015 21:48
(C) Reuters / Paul Hanna
The Pentagon has announced new multibillion dollar arms contracts with the regimes in Israel and Saudi Arabia, America's primary allies in the Middle East. Both are knee-deep in military conflicts destabilizing the region.The $1.9 billion deal with Israel implies supply of some 3,000 Hellfire precision missiles, 250 AIM-120C advanced medium-range air-to-air missiles, 4,100 GBU-39 small diameter bombs and 50 BLU-113 bunker buster bombs. The order also includes 14,500 tail kits for Joint Direct Attack Munitions for 220kg and 900kg bombs and a variety of Paveway laser-guided bomb kits.
Israeli media sees the deal as "compensation" for the rapprochement between Iran and the US, which Washington sees as trying to get Tehran's nuclear program under control.
Tel Aviv has been sharply criticizing Washington for its decision to negotiate a nuclear deal with Tehran, and Israel has even ostentatiously "reserved the right" to conduct a unilateral air strike on Iran.
"The proposed sale of this equipment will provide Israel the ability to support its self-defense needs," the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency said, adding that the new contract is meant to"replenish" Israel's arsenal without supplying the country with any kind of new weapons.
In November 2014 it was reported that Pentagon was going to supply Israel with 3,000 smart bombs, similar to those used by the Israeli Air Force in Gaza last summer, where an estimated 100 tons of munitions were dropped.
The main contractors to fulfill the lucrative Israeli arms deal will be Boeing, Ellwood National Forge, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon Missile Systems, AFP reported.
As for Saudi Arabia, the world's largest buyer of American weapons, it wants to buy 10 Seahawk MH-60R helicopters along with radars, navigation systems and 38 Hellfire missiles.
(C) Reuters / Paolo BayasMH-60R Seahawk helicopter.
According to a Congressional Research Service (CRS) report, between 2010 and 2014 Riyadh spent $90 billion on American weapons, becoming world's leading buyer of US-made arms.The helicopters will be supplied by Sikorsky Aircraft Corp, while associated gear will be produced by Lockheed Martin.
The US administration must notify Congress 30 days ahead of the sale of weapons to a foreign government, as lawmakers have a right to block or amend any arms deal.
Both Israel and Saudi Arabia have been recently conducting offensive operations on the territory of their neighbors.During the 50-day campaign in Gaza last summer, where Israel actively used its Air Force, more than 2,100 Palestinians were killed, the vast majority of them unarmed civilians.
Israel is also regularly targeting airstrikes on the territory of neighboring Syria.
(C) Reuters / Paul Hanna
Apart from multiple airstrikes against military installations controlled by the Syrian Army, Damascus has accused Israel of providing air support to armed terrorist groups in Syria.Saudi Arabia has initiated and led airstrikes on the territory of neighbor Yemen, where Houthi rebels have seized power and ousted a Riyadh-backed president.Since late March, when airstrikes were launched and a naval blockade of Yemen was imposed, at least 1,250 people have been killed and over 5,000 wounded in the conflict, according to the World Health Organization. Local estimates of casualties have been much higher.
Machine Monitoring, OEE and DNC Solutions - Memex Automation
Fri, 22 May 2015 21:32
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'¹'ºImagine your manufacturing at World Class standards, 85+% OEE. Memex Automation's award winning MERLIN enables this. Since 1992, Memex technology improves the way machines ''connect'', Shop Floor to Top Floor, vertically & horizontally integrated, with cost effective and real-time MES, tracking every event state of the machines.
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Memex Automation is proud to be a member of AMT.
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Memex Automation has won the 2013 Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Award award for Machine Monitoring Systems.
May 14, 2015 Press Releases
Memex Automation released its financial results and operational highlights for its second quarter, ended March 31, 2015.
May 14, 2015 Press Releases
Memex Automation (TSX-V:OEE) proposes to complete a non-brokered private placement of up to 16,666,666 units, at a price of $0.15 per unit, for aggregate gross proceeds of up to $2,500,000.
May 13, 2015 Press Releases
California-based FM Industries has purchased the machine tool productivity software solution, MERLIN, from Memex Automation, in the initial phase of a multi-phase project.
May 7, 2015 Press Releases
Mexico-based Industrial B&S has purchased the machine tool productivity software solution MERLIN from Memex Automation to install plant-wide, in addition to becoming a showcase site for the Mexican marketplace.
About MemexMemex was founded in 1992 with a vision to improve the way automated machine tools work and connect on the factory floor. Memex started manufacturing electronic circuit boards for memory and connectivity and evolved into Memex Automation. The vision has expanded to include the networking of all machine tools so that they can communicate with the computers in the administration office. In fact, the network may be extended to the Internet, allowing productivity and other statistics to be emailed to a device, or computer anywhere in the world.
Quick Links(C) 2015 Memex Automation, all rights reserved.
'Deep Web Search' May Help Scientists | NASA
Fri, 22 May 2015 21:31
'Deep Web Search' May Help Scientists | NASAHTTP/1.1 200 OK x-amz-id-2: uq5LvuQZcuq1irawpST1HYoaqJDeJuxnk9Bac8+wJZcQaoZ0eLqjhiTD5VOJ9OEF73D+f+Wf8/c= x-amz-request-id: F0202B2D3300421D x-amz-meta-md5_hash: 3998c4a07c20ff09cf6faf3645297ddc Cache-Control: max-age=300 Content-Type: text/html Server: AmazonS3 Content-Encoding: gzip Vary: Accept-Encoding Age: 97 Date: Fri, 22 May 2015 21:31:04 GMT Last-Modified: Fri, 22 May 2015 17:01:09 GMT Expires: Fri, 22 May 2015 21:34:27 GMT Content-Length: 2654 Connection: keep-alive X-UA-Compatible: IE=edge
New Study Finds That Fox News Is Brainwashing Viewers And Hurting The Republican Party
Fri, 22 May 2015 16:07
A new study has found that Fox News is hurting the Republican Party by brainwashing millions of angry conservatives with misinformation.
In a new study of the Fox News effect by Bruce Bartlett, research was collected that demonstrated the negative impact of Fox News on media and politics.
Bartlett described what the founding of Fox News first meant to conservatives, and how it shifted into an act of self-brain washing, ''Like someone dying of thirst in the desert, conservatives drank heavily from the Fox waters. Soon, it became the dominant -and in many cases, virtually the only '' major news source for millions of Americans. This has had profound political implications that are only starting to be appreciated. Indeed, it can almost be called self-brainwashing '' many conservatives now refuse to even listen to any news or opinion not vetted through Fox, and to believe whatever appears on it as the gospel truth.''
Mr. Bartlett documented Fox News' extreme rightward shift after 9/11 and how the network went from tilting conservative to flat out misinformation and propaganda. The study also sums of years of research that points to Fox News viewers as being the least informed media consumers.
The dominance of Fox News has led to some extremely negative consequences that are harming the Republican Party:
Although this arrangement unquestionably aids Republicans in winning elections and votes in Congress, it is not without its downsides. One is that Fox now exercises such powerful control over the GOP that it has become the party's kingmaker in presidential primaries.56 Indeed, during the 2012 election cycle, a number of aspirants for the Republican nomination had been paid Fox commentators, including Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee. And woe to the Republican who runs afoul of Fox's top brass or ignores their advice, as Mitt Romney did on one occasion in 2012. Fox is now so important in GOP primaries that candidates must put aside pressing campaign concerns when summoned to a Fox interview, where any error is magnified within the Republican bubble.
'....
Another problem is that Republican voters get so much of their news from Fox, which cheerleads whatever their candidates are doing or saying, that they suffer from wishful thinking and fail to see that they may not be doing as well as they imagine, or that their ideas are not connectingoutside the narrow party base.
Bartlett's conclusion is that the same attributes that make Fox a strong cable network are harming the Republican Party.
There is little doubt that the Republican Party is influenced by two interests. The corporations and conservative billionaires who fund their campaigns and Fox News. A Republican candidate can be made or broken by Fox News, but the network also pushes Republicans to an unelectable right-wing position in presidential elections.
Viewers have been brainwashed by a combination of misinformation and constant confirmation of their own biases. Fox News doesn't ''report'' reality. The result is that millions of Fox News Republicans expect their candidates to carry out what they see on television, which has led to a party of non-reality based voters supporting delusional candidates.
The impact is felt on a broken legislative process where for one party there is no middle and opposing the President at all costs has become a path to political victory.
The conclusion is unmistakable. Fox News has not only broken journalism. The conservative news network is also destroying the Republican Party.

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