811: Dead Men Can't Sue

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

2h 56m
March 27th, 2016
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Executive Producers: Jessie Lorenz Blind Dame of the SF Bay, Sir Phillip Rodokanakis,

Associate Executive Producers: Sir Matt McVader,-Knight of Edgewater, Sir Hank Scorpio of the Electrical Grid

Cover Artist: Nick the Rat

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Digital Sky-Writing
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 02:31
Digital Sky-WritingA few weeks ago I heard about a pilot who had done some funky navigation, which showed up as a drawing of an aircraft when looking at his flight track from historical radar data. This looked like a fun project to put together locally in Texas.Our plan had us departing San Marcos Municipal Airport, westbound towards Fredrickberg, where we planned to have lunch.APRS is basically digital data being transmitted through radio waves, received by one or more ground stations, all operated by amateur volunteers and repeated (digipeated) to another ground station (if needed) connected to the internet if needed. Some of the best APRS tracks I have ever seen!Thanks again to Charlie and all the No Agenda Producers who helped monitor and propagate our formula.We also plotted the GPS data recorded on board with a Garmin to Google Earth
Elections 2016
Washington Times Fires Writer For Confirming Cruz Mistress Bomb
Sat, 26 Mar 2016 17:34
Conservative news paper The Washington Times has fired one of its writers after he confirmed that the Ted Cruz mistress bomb is partially correct.
''COMING CLEAN: From what I know, at least 2 of the women named as Cruz mistresses by the National Enquirer are accurate,'' tweeted Drew Johnson yesterday, in response to the explosive mistress bomb scandal rocking the presidential campaign of Republican Ted Cruz.
Drew Johnson
Johnson gave no further details on which of the affairs actually happened, but went on to explain that ''lots heard rumors. An online media outlet new the whole story but they chose not to run w/it.''
Johnson also tweeted that ''another has the details'' and ''it's their story to tell,'' not the Washington Times.
It is believed that conservative media website Breitbart knew of the Cruz sex scandal, but refused to report on it.
The writer also tweeted that he does not support Donald Trump for president.
After Johnson's tweets went viral, the Times first denied he was a columnist for the paper, although his last piece was a pro-fracking article on March 4. The paper also deleted his page on their website, although his pieces continue to appear there via search engine.
''Interesting to learn I wasn't a Washington Times columnist, since I've received money in exchange for writing columns for quite a while,'' Johnson tweeted late Saturday night.
Johnson also posted several copies of checks from the Washington Times to prove he continues to be paid by the paper for past article.
One of several paychecks from the Washington Times tweeted by Drew Johnson to prove he works there.
The Washington Times responded by abruptly firing Johnson on Sunday morning.
''I look forward to finding a new home for my columns & continuing to advance liberty by exposing gov't waste, abuse of power & hypocrisy.'' Johnson tweeted Sunday afternoon.
Ted Cruz and several of the women involved flatly deny the allegations, charging Donald Trump with a 'dirty tricks' campaign. Trump has denied any involvement in the matter.
Keith Ellison - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 02:52
Keith Maurice Ellison (born August 4, 1963) has been the U.S. Representative for Minnesota's 5th congressional district since 2007. He is a member of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party (DFL), the Minnesota state Democratic Party affiliate. The district centers on Minneapolis and surrounding suburbs. Ellison is a co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and a Chief Deputy Whip, also notably serving in the House Committee on Financial Services.
Ellison is the first Muslim to be elected to the U.S. Congress.[1] He is also the first African American elected to the House from Minnesota.[2]
Early life, education, and career[edit]Keith Ellison, the third of five sons, was born and raised Roman Catholic[3] in Detroit, Michigan, by his parents Leonard Ellison, a social worker and a psychiatrist, and Clida (Martinez) Ellison.[1][4][5] Ellison and three of his brothers became lawyers; his other brother became a doctor. One of Ellison's brothers is also the pastor of the Baptist "Church of the New Covenant" in Detroit.[4] Ellison's youth was influenced by the involvement of his family in the civil rights movement, including his grandfather's work as a member of the NAACP in Louisiana.[1]
Ellison graduated in 1981 from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School and Academy, where he was active in sports and a senator in the student government.[4][7] At age 19, while attending Wayne State University in Detroit, Ellison converted from Catholicism to Islam, later giving the following explanation: "I can't claim that I was the most observant Catholic at the time [of my conversion]. I had begun to really look around and ask myself about the social circumstances of the country, issues of justice, issues of change. When I looked at my spiritual life, and I looked at what might inform social change, justice in society... I found Islam."[8][9][10]
After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in economics in 1987, Ellison married his high-school sweetheart[3] and moved to Minneapolis to attend the University of Minnesota Law School. While there, he wrote several articles in support of Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam. Ellison graduated with a Juris Doctor in 1990.[11][12]
Ellison and his former wife Kim, a high-school mathematics teacher,[13] had four children between 1989 and 1997:[14] a daughter, Amirah, and three sons, Jeremiah, Elijah, and Isaiah.[13] Kim Ellison is not Muslim, but their four children have been raised in that faith.[15] During Ellison's 2006 campaign, Kim Ellison revealed that she had been living with moderate multiple sclerosis for several years.[16] Ellison filed for a legal separation from Kim in 2010,[17] and their divorce was finalized on May 2, 2012.[18]
After law school, Ellison worked for three years at the firm of Lindquist & Vennum, where he was a litigator specializing in civil rights, employment, and criminal defense law.[11][14] Ellison then became executive director of the nonprofit Legal Rights Center in Minneapolis, which specializes in the defense of indigent clients.[14] Upon leaving the Legal Rights Center, Ellison entered private practice with the law firm Hassan & Reed Ltd, specializing in trial practice.[19] Ellison has also been regularly involved in community service. He served as the unpaid host of a public affairs talk program at KMOJ radio,[14] and has also often volunteered as a track coach for several organizations, working with youth between the ages of 5 and 18. He said, "It's a great community-building device because it's for all ages and all genders. Everyone can find a way to fit in."[14]
Minnesota House of Representatives[edit]In November 2002, Ellison was elected to his first public office, as a member of the Minnesota House of Representatives serving House District 58B. At the time he took his seat, his party was the smallest House minority in Minnesota history.[20] During this session, Ellison was appointed to the Governmental Operations & Veterans Affairs Policy Committee, the Judiciary Policy & Finance Committee and the Local Government & Metropolitan Affairs Committee. He also spearheaded an ethics complaint against Rep. Arlon Lindner for a speech Lindner made that Ellison alleged amounted to a denial that homosexuals were targeted by the Nazis and killed during the Holocaust.[citation needed]
Ellison was reelected to his seat in 2004 with 84% of the vote. During the 84th session, he served on the Civil Law & Elections Committee and the Public Safety Policy & Finance Committee. Upon his election to Congress, Ellison's seat in the Minnesota House of Representatives was filled by Augustine Dominguez, a Latino community activist and fellow member of the DFL.[21]
U.S. House of Representatives[edit]Elections[edit]Ellison's House seat was previously held by Martin Olav Sabo, whose announcement of his intention to retire precipitated Ellison's candidacy. At the DFL Convention on May 6, 2006, Ellison won the party endorsement over 9 other candidates, leading 2-to-1 on the first ballot, and winning endorsement on the 4th ballot. In the primary, Ellison faced former state senator Ember Reichgott Junge, Minneapolis city council member Paul Ostrow, and Sabo's chief of staff Mike Erlandson, whom Sabo had endorsed. Ellison won the primary on September 12, 2006, with 41% of the vote.[22] One issue Ellison's campaign opponents raised was the repeated suspensions of his driver's license for failure to pay tickets and fines.[23] Ellison had also failed to pay all or part of his income taxes in five separate years between 1992 and 2000, forcing the state and Internal Revenue Service to put liens on his home. He later paid in excess of $18,000.[1][24]
In the November 2006 election, Ellison faced Republican Alan Fine, the Green Party's Jay Pond, and Tammy Lee of the Independence Party. Ellison won the seat with 56% of the vote.[25][26]
Tenure[edit]Ellison was elected to the House of Representatives on November 7, 2006, and sworn in on January 4, 2007. He garnered national attention with his decision to use an English translation of the Qur'an that once belonged to President Thomas Jefferson for his reenacted swearing-in ceremony, which generated praise and criticisms from political pundits.
At the time of his swearing in, Ellison said he intended to focus on wages, housing, "relief and justice for the middle class", and ending the U.S. involvement in the Iraq War.[27] Ellison was also a vocal critic of President George W. Bush's administration, and sought a position on the House Judiciary Committee for oversight.[28]
In his first week as a member of Congress, Ellison voted with the new Democratic majority as part of the 100-Hour Plan to raise the minimum wage, for federal funding of stem cell research, and to allow Medicare to negotiate pharmaceutical prices.[29]
On April 3, 2014, Ellison introduced the Money Remittances Improvement Act of 2014 (H.R. 4386; 113th Congress) into the United States House.[30] The bill would make it easier for nonbank financial institutions such as money service businesses to provide remittance payments internationally.[31] Ellison said that "passage of the Money Remittances Improvement Act is cause for celebration for all diaspora communities, including the Somali and Hmong communities I am proud to represent in Minnesota."[32]
Credit reformOn May 3, 2007, Ellison introduced a bill to outlaw universal default, the practice whereby credit card companies raise interest rates on customers who are behind on payments to other creditors. The bill was supported by House Financial Services Committee chairman Barney Frank. Ellison, who described the bill as "the beginning of a whole credit reform effort we're going to be pursuing," also announced his interest in limiting high interest rates on credit cards and easing the process for those who have a legitimate need to file bankruptcy.[33] This provision ultimately became law in 2009 as part of the "Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights" portion of the Credit CARD Act of 2009.[citation needed]
Committee assignments[edit]See Note Below.[34]
Caucus membershipPolitical positions[edit]Ellison on The Laura Flanders Show, February 2016Abortion[edit]In 2009 and 2011, Ellison had a 100% rating from NARAL Pro-Choice America indicating a pro-choice voting record.[39][40] In 2009, Ellison condemned the assassination of Dr. George Tiller by an anti-abortion activist, saying "There is no room in America to 'justify' murder in the name of ideological differences. I condemn the act committed against Dr. Tiller as well as those who take comfort from his death."[41]
LGBT rights[edit]In an interview with the BBC's program Outlook, on November 12, 2010, Ellison was asked to describe his constituents. He answered: "The district I represent is the kind of district where you can have a Member of Congress stand up for religious tolerance and against religious bigotry, against anyone, but also stand up for the rights of gays too."[42]
Iraq War[edit]After President George W. Bush vetoed HR 1591 that provided military funding for the Iraq War because it contained timetables for withdrawal, Ellison and fellow Minnesota Rep. Betty McCollum, joined House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other top House Democrats in voting "no" to HR 2206 that provided the funding without any timetables. The bill passed the House on a 280 to 142 margin.[43]
Ellison joined fellow Minnesota freshman Democrat Tim Walz in opposing President George W. Bush's plan to increase troop levels in Iraq.[44] On January 10, 2007, Bush announced his plans for the Iraq War troop surge of 2007. The gist of this announcement had been known around the Capitol for over a week, and when the Associated Press asked Ellison for his reaction to the idea on January 8, 2007, he stated that it was "way too late, way too little.... So rather than do something small and ineffective, why not get about the business of what we're going to have to do eventually, which is to begin to end the occupation?"[45] Ellison called for an immediate withdrawal in Iraq: "We could describe it as a redeployment or withdrawal, but I think we have run the course in terms of our ability to resolve this conflict militarily. I think we need to have a political and economic and diplomatic engagement, and we need to encourage the forces that are in Iraq to begin to resolve the violence in Iraq."[45] When asked if he would support Bush's call for an additional $100 billion to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Ellison said, "I want to see [the request] first, I want to actually look at it, but I'm not inclined to continue to support a war or an occupation that he has no plans to get us out of, and which is so costly in terms of dollars and lives of American soldiers but also Iraqis."[45] The White House, when asked for a reaction to the comments, referred to a previous statement by press secretary Tony Snow: "Democrats will have to decide where they stand on two issues: 'No. 1, do you want Iraq to succeed, and, if so, what does that mean? And, No. 2, do you believe in supporting the troops as you say, and how do you express that support?'"[45]
Bush administration[edit]On July 25, 2007, Ellison voted in the House Judiciary Committee to issue citations of Contempt of Congress to White House Chief of StaffJoshua Bolten and former White House CounselHarriet Miers for "failure to comply with subpoenas on the firings of several federal prosecutors".[46]
On June 28, 2007, Ellison became a cosponsor of Rep. Dennis Kucinichbill to impeach Vice President Dick Cheney for "high crimes and misdemeanors." Ellison's spokesperson, Rick Jauert, said the effort was "largely to send a message" and that Ellison "has no illusions that this is going anywhere and that's fine. We've got more important things to do that affect people's daily lives. He basically signed on out of principle, as an expression of the importance of the rule of law '-- that nobody is above the law, not even the vice president."[47]
On July 8, 2007, Ellison gave a speech in Edina, Minnesota, where he denounced Bush's commutation of Lewis Libby's sentence: "If Libby gets pardoned, then he should not have the cover of the Fifth Amendment. He's going to have to come clean and tell the truth. Now, he could get Gonzales-itis [referring to U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales], you know, with 71 lapses of memory within a two-hour period."[48] He also criticized Bush's White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives saying, "This is basically the Department of Religious Outreach.... It's essentially a public-relations outreach arm for the Bush administration to reach out to the far right of the evangelical Christian movement. That's really all it is."[48]
Human rights[edit]Ellison issued a statement Friday March 21, 2008 that criticized the Chinese government for its Tibet policy and for its relationship with Sudan's leaders 'as they commit genocide on the citizens of Darfur.'[49]
Ellison was arrested along with seven other people including U.S. Representatives James McGovern, John Lewis, Donna Edwards, Lynn Woolsey for civil disobedience in April 2009 when they spoke at the Sudanese Embassy in Washington, D.C. to protest that the president of Sudan, Omar al-Bashir, had asked international aid groups bringing food, health care and water, to leave Darfur.[50] While in Khartoum in August 2009, Ellison wrote a message on Twitter saying he "ran straight into Pres. Omar Bashir. He has been indicted by the Inter'l Crim. Ct. (ICC) for war crimes."
2016 U.S. presidential election endorsements[edit]Ellison was the second U.S. Representative to endorseBernie Sanders for President in the 2016 election,[52] after Raºl Grijalva (D-AZ).
Travels abroad[edit]Middle East[edit]In late March and early April 2007, Ellison was a member of a congressional delegation on a "fact-finding trip to the Middle East."[53] The group included Representatives Henry Waxman, Tom Lantos, Louise Slaughter, Nick Rahall, Dave Hobson, who were led by then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The delegation visited the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the Western Wall. Ellison called his visit to Islam's third-holiest site, the Al-Aqsa Mosque, as "personally moving".[54][55] The group met with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and discussed the peace plan devised by the Saudis in 2002.[54] The delegation also met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
The group's visit to Syria was criticized by the Bush administration, which restated its view that the United States should not have diplomatic relations with state sponsors of terrorism.[53] While there the delegation conveyed a message from Olmert to Syrian President Bashar Assad that "Israel is interested in peace if Damascus stops supporting terrorism".[54] In Lebanon the group met with Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and Speaker Nabih Berri. They also visited the grave of Rafik Hariri and met with his son Saad Hariri.[56] In Saudi Arabia the group spoke to King Abdullah and his Shura Council of advisors.[57] They praised his peace plan and advocated a greater role for women in his nation's political process. Ellison's inclusion in the delegation was praised by council member Abdul-Rahman al-Zamel.[56][57] Ellison called the king a "visionary leader" and that "Even being in the same country where Mecca and Medina are located was personally uplifting for me."[55] Ellison also said he hoped his presence as a Muslim among the delegation conveyed a message to the Israelis and Palestinians that "people can come together. Reconciliation is possible."[53]
Iraq[edit]On July 28 and 29, 2007, Ellison was among an "all-freshman bipartisan congressional delegation" visiting Iraq, arranged by Defense Secretary Robert Gates and led by Rep. Jerry McNerney.[58][59] Before the trip, Ellison told reporters that he would be stopping over in Germany to visit wounded U.S. soldiers being treated there.[58] He also stated that he respected any politician who visited Iraq, making note of Republican Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty who went in February, 2007, along with five other Governors.[58][60] Ellison said, "If this country is going to ask these young people to stand in a war zone, their political leadership should visit them."[58] In Iraq the delegation met with Iraqi and U.S. military officials, including Gen. David Petraeus.[citation needed]
Israel and the Palestinian territories[edit]Soon after returning home from his trip to Iraq, Ellison joined with 19 other representatives on a week-long trip to Israel sponsored by the American Israel Education Foundation. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer led the group and personally invited Ellison to join them for a stay from August 12''18, 2007.[61] The group met with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Ellison's spokesperson told reporters that the trip was "a natural extension of his visit to Iraq" and that "the Middle East peace issue is important to the diverse communities of his Minneapolis-area district '-- from the Jewish Community Relations Council to the patrons of the Holy Land Middle Eastern eatery on Lake Street and Central Avenue. He hears about it every time he goes back to his district." The group traveled to Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, the northern Galilee region, and Ramallah, and viewed the Israeli border with Lebanon.[61]
During this trip, Ellison stated that Israel did not permit him to travel to Gaza, where a conflict was occurring.[62] In a 2009 interview with reporter Shihab Rattansi, Ellison expressed his disappointment at his inability to see the humanitarian situation for himself. In the same interview, he called for a more open discussion on Gaza, stating: "The people who have a strong sympathy for the Israeli position... dominate the conversation. And it's really not politically safe to say, look, there are two sides to this, and Israel has not been an angel in this, and certainly there have been people on the Palestinian side who have not contributed to a constructive solution."[62]
During the Summer 2014 conflict between Hamas and Israel, Ellison published an editorial in The Washington Post that called for an end to the blockade in Gaza. Citing his 3 trips to Gaza since 2009, Ellison suggested that empowering Gazans by ending the blockade would weaken extremists and help move towards final status peace.[64]
Gaza and Sderot[edit]On February 19, 2009, Ellison and fellow Representative Brian Baird visited Gaza to view firsthand the destruction from the Gaza War and to meet with international and local relief agencies, including the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East. This visit, which Ellison and Baird say did not have the official sanction of the Obama Administration, was the first time any U.S. government official had entered Gaza in more than three years.[65] Ellison had this to say about what he saw:
''The stories about the children affected me the most. No parent, or anyone who cares for kids, can remain unmoved by what Brian and I saw here.[66]''The following day, Ellison and Baird visited the Israeli towns of Sderot and Ashkelon, which were the targets of numerous Qassam rocket attacks, repeatedly launched from within the Gaza strip.[66]
Norway[edit]Ellison visited Norway in January 2008 because of Norway's prominent role in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, and because of the Norwegian-American heritage of many of his constituents. While there, Ellison met with former Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik, then president of the Oslo Center for Peace and Human Rights. The Star Tribune reported that the "trip underscores Ellison's desire to play a role in the international peace movement."[67][68]
Africa[edit]In mid-2008, Ellison joined a U.S. House Democracy Assistance Commission delegation that traveled to six African countries, including Liberia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Mauritania and Kenya. "The people of the 5th Congressional District [his own] know that, in this globalized world, to have peace and security relies on other people having a modicum of peace and security," Ellison said upon returning. He attended a July 4 reception at the U.S. ambassador's residence in Nairobi, Kenya, where Ellison met Sarah Hussein Onyango Obama, the step-grandmother of then-presidential candidate Barack Obama.[69]
Advocacy for American Muslims[edit]With his victory to the United States House of Representatives Ellison became the first Muslim elected to the Federal Government and the highest Muslim elected official in the United States, with Congressman Andr(C) Carson elected in 2008, as the only other Muslim serving in the U.S. Congress.[70] Ellison's election has been seen as inspirational to American Muslims, and he encourages civic empowerment through participation in the political process.[71][72] Ellison generally "downplayed the role of religion in his drive for office,"[73] but he has become active in advocacy for Muslim American civic engagement and civil rights causes on a national level since.[74][75][76][77]
North American Imams Federation[edit]On November 18, 2006, Ellison gave a speech called "Imams and Politics" to the Fourth Annual Body Meeting of the North American Imams Federation.[78] The Federation's materials presented the issues to be outlined in Ellison's speech as follows: "Many Muslims around the United States are involved in political activities at different levels. Recognizing the sensitivity of political issues and the potential for divisiveness within the communities as a result of divergent political views, Imams must be able to provide Muslims with the proper guidance and educate them on the etiquettes of any political involvement within the Islamic context. Questions also arise on whether Imams and Islamic centers should be involved in politics at all and what the extent of this involvement should be, therefore Imams should have the ability to address these concerns. Overall, it is important that Imams are aware and understand the general political climate of their communities and be especially conversant with the issues that affect Muslims."[78] Ellison also took part in "Community Night" with Imam Siraj Wahhaj, and Imam Dr. Omar Shahin. This was "for Imams to meet and interact with community members."[78] Some of the participants of this meeting became involved in the Flying Imams controversy after being removed from an Arizona bound plane for "concerning behavior".[79] Ellison became involved in this controversy shortly after it erupted when he attempted to arrange a meeting between parties including US Airways executives, the Metropolitan Airports Commission, and other legislators and community members.[80]
MOSES interfaith group[edit]On December 27, 2006, Ellison spoke at a meeting in Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in Detroit for Metropolitan Organizing Strategy Enabling Strength (MOSES). The meeting was with leaders from the Catholic, Muslim, and Arab-American communities, along with members of the organized labor movement. He told those in attendance that the principles of Islam guide his life, but he has no intention of imposing his faith on others, "I'm not a religious leader, I've never led religious services of any kind. I'm not here to be a preacher, but in terms of political agenda items, my faith informs me."[81] He addressed the Qur'an Oath controversy of the 110th United States Congress and said that he hoped religion could be a uniting, rather than a dividing force: "They've never actually tried to explore how religion should connect us, they're into how religion divides us. ... They haven't really explored ... how my faith connects me to you."[81]
Promoting US with the State Department[edit]Two months after taking office, Ellison met with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and other top State Department officials to talk about "showcasing his story as part of their public diplomacy efforts in the Muslim world."[82] According to the Star Tribune, Ellison was "profiled three times by the State Department's overseas press bureau." He also "did a Voice of America interview from his office, where an American flag was placed conspicuously behind his desk for the cameras."[82] In the interview which was set to play in the Middle East and South Asia, Ellison stressed global inclusiveness and quoted verse 49:13 of the Qur'an "Oh humanity, we created you from a single pair..."[82] Ellison also accepted the Bush administration's request to be part of a "teleconference with Karen Hughes, the State Department's undersecretary for public diplomacy. The White House has asked that the teleconference promote American values and confront ideological support for terrorism around the world."[82] The Voice of America applauded Ellison's cooperation saying "He is the most famous freshman congressman in the world."[82]
It was noted that after he took his oath of office he was surrounded by the foreign press, intrigued in part by the oath controversy, who "had to be ushered out of his office after he took his oath to make room for home-state news crews."[82] Ellison has been "featured in a series of articles written for foreign dissemination by the Department's Bureau of International Information Programs."[82] Including an article that was translated into Persian and Arabic that "highlighted the diversity of his constituents in Minnesota, ranging from Swedes and Norwegians to 'the largest Somali immigrant community in America.'"[82] In his work in cooperation with the state department, Ellison stresses the religious freedom available in the US, saying things like "religious tolerance has a much longer pedigree in America than some of the intolerance we've seen lately."[82] Even in his work with the State Department he remained critical of President Bush's Iraq policy saying "he wants people around the world to know that 'there are many Americans who want to relate to the rest of the world in terms of cooperation, not military domination.'"[82] Ellison staffers told reporters that "the State Department has shown no signs of squeamishness about publicizing his criticism of the war."[82] When asked about working with elements of the Bush administration Ellison said "Hey, my country first. We can work out our political differences later. I've said I'm willing to do whatever I can to make some friends for America."[82]
Issues and controversies[edit]Qur'an oath of office[edit]Because Ellison converted to Islam from the Roman Catholic faith, he stated an intent to use the Qur'an instead of a Bible at his photo-op reenactment of the swearing-in ceremony (the official ceremony is done en masse without any books), conservative columnist Dennis Prager wrote a column criticizing his decision.[83] This drew responses from organizations such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the American Family Association, and the Anti-Defamation League.[citation needed]
Representative Virgil Goode of Virginia, responding to "scores and hundreds of emails"[84] from his constituents after the Prager articles, has also stated his view that Ellison's decision to use the Qur'an is a threat to "the values and beliefs traditional to the United States of America".[85] He also wrote, "...if American citizens don't wake up and adopt the Virgil Goode position on immigration there will likely be many more Muslims elected to office and demanding the use of the Qur'an."
CNN reported that on the opening day of Congress, Ellison met Goode on the House floor to shake hands and Goode accepted an offer to talk over coffee.[87] That same day during his oath reenactment, Ellison used a two volume Qur'an once owned by Thomas Jefferson[88] and loaned to Ellison by "the rare book and special collections division at the Library of Congress"; coincidentally, Jefferson's home at Monticello was actually located in Goode's district.[89] According to Ellison, "it demonstrates that from the very beginning of our country, we had people who were visionary, who were religiously tolerant, who believed that knowledge and wisdom could be gleaned from any number of sources, including the Qur'an."[90] Historian Kevin J. Hayes in his article How Thomas Jefferson Read the Qur'an explained that Jefferson purchased the book in 1765 while studying for the bar exam to become a lawyer.[91]
President Barack Obama in an address to nations with a majority Muslim population made in Cairo, Egypt on June 4, 2009 cited this event as an example of the continual positive impact Muslims have had on America, saying, "And when the first Muslim-American was recently elected to Congress, he took the oath to defend our Constitution using the same Holy Qur'an that one of our Founding Fathers'--Thomas Jefferson'--kept in his personal library."[92]
Interview with Glenn Beck[edit]On November 14, 2006, Glenn Beck of CNN Headline News[93] said to Ellison, "I have been nervous about this interview with you, because what I feel like saying is, 'Sir, prove to me that you are not working with our enemies.' And I know you're not. I'm not accusing you of being an enemy, but that's the way I feel, and I think a lot of Americans will feel that way." Ellison replied that his constituents, "know that I have a deep love and affection for my country. There's no one who's more patriotic than I am, and so you know, I don't need to '-- need to prove my patriotic stripes."[citation needed]
When asked by Beck about his opinion on "Muslim extremists" Ellison replied, "They're criminals. But I think that people who commit criminal acts should be treated like criminals, regardless of their faith."[93] Ellison has also said, "Osama bin Laden no more represents Islam than Timothy McVeigh represented Christianity."[94] Asked about the incident later, Ellison dismissed it, "It's just shock TV. Some pundits think they have to ask the most outrageous questions."[95]
On January 2, 2007, Beck said on his radio program that Ellison did not take offense at the comments and the two had a friendly chat off the air. On January 9, 2007, at the Television Critics Association's semiannual press tour, Beck said it was "Quite possibly the poorest-worded question of all time." He clarified by saying, "My point to Keith Ellison... is the same point that I make to my own faith, and that is '-- you must stand up before things get out of control ... And it's important for people of all faiths, when someone is hijacking their religion, to stand and say, 'That is not what we do. That is not who we are."'[96]
Louis Farrakhan and history with the Nation of Islam[edit]As a law student in 1989 and 1990, Ellison wrote several columns under the name "Keith E. Hakim" in the student newspaper, the Minnesota Daily. Washington Post Staff Writer Alan Cooperman said that Ellison's articles "defended Farrakhan against accusations of anti-semitism," and that Ellison "called affirmative action a 'sneaky' form of compensation for slavery, suggesting instead that white Americans pay reparations to blacks."[97][98][99]
Denunciation of the Nation of Islam[edit]During Ellison's 2006 campaign, Minnesota Republican operatives[97][100] raised questions about the articles and his involvement with the Nation of Islam. In response, Ellison wrote a letter to the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota & the Dakotas asserting he had never been a member, and that his connections with the Nation of Islam were limited to an 18-month period during which he helped organize the Minnesota contingent at the 1995 Million Man March.[23][97][101] In Ellison's letter, he denounced the Nation of Islam and Farrakhan, writing "I wrongly dismissed concerns that they [Farrakhan's remarks] were anti-Semitic. They were and are anti-Semitic and I should have come to that conclusion earlier than I did."[102] He explained his previous views, saying that he "did not adequately scrutinize the positions and statements of the Nation of Islam, Louis Farrakhan, and Khalid Muhammed." He also stated, "any kind of discrimination and hate are wrong. This has always been my position". During the 2006 campaign, many prominent Jewish DFL activists supported Ellison, including fundraisers Samuel and Sylvia Kaplan, and State Representative Phyllis Kahn, who said it was "inconceivable that he could have ever been an anti-Semite."[97]
Campaign contributions from members of CAIR[edit]During the 2006 election Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and James Yee, the former Muslim chaplain at Guantanamo Bay, spoke at an August 25 fundraiser for Ellison.[97][103] Awad and Ellison knew each other as they attended the University of Minnesota Law School at the same time.[4][104] According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, Ellison accepted individual contributions from Nihad Awad and another leader of CAIR[not specific enough to verify]; Ellison responded that he had fully disclosed all contributions and asserted that he had "nothing to hide".[105] Ellison stressed that he was supported by individuals, and that the non-profit organization itself did not endorse his candidacy.[106]
His Republican opponent in the race, Alan Fine, criticized Ellison for accepting these contributions, asserting that CAIR was "a group that Democrats say has deep ties to terrorism".[107] In response to Ellison's opponents, CAIR leaders Parvez Ahmed and Nihad Awad wrote "We are proud of our personal donations to Ellison's campaign" and derided any 'guilt by association' arguments.[108]
Campaign finance violations[edit]In early 2006, the Minnesota State Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board reprimanded Ellison for unreported campaign contributions, discrepancies in cash balances, and misclassified disbursements during his campaigns for the Minnesota House of Representatives. These transgressions occurred in the years 2002''04. In 2005, the board opened an investigation, and Ellison was subpoenaed and fined.[109][110]
Ellison was repeatedly fined for late filings,[111] was sued twice by the Attorney General of Minnesota, and was warned about absent or incomplete disclosures.[23][97][112][113]
Reichstag fire and 9/11[edit]On July 8, 2007, Ellison discussed the power of the executive branch in a speech before the organization Atheists for Human Rights. He stated that Dick Cheney asserted it was "beneath his dignity in order for him to answer any questions from the citizens of the United States. That is the very definition of totalitarianism, authoritarianism and dictatorship."[114] He went on to say, "It's almost like the Reichstag fire, kind of reminds me of that. After the Reichstag was burned, they blamed the Communists for it and it put the leader of that country, Hitler, in a position where he could basically have authority to do whatever he wanted. The fact is that I'm not saying September 11 was a U.S. plan or anything like that because, you know, that's how they put you in the nut-ball box '-- dismiss you."[114]
Fox News picked up the story[115] and their commentator John Gibson categorized Ellison's comments as accusing "Bush of planning and executing the 9/11 attacks".[116] In Congress, Representatives Eric Cantor and Zach Wamp wrote House Speaker Nancy Pelosi demanding she "swiftly and immediately" reprimand Ellison for his remarks. The letter said "Even if Ellison asserts that he was not implying that 9/11 was orchestrated by the administration, the comparison he draws between Hitler and the President of United States is disgraceful. These comments inflame hatred and division at a time when we should be promoting our unity and reconciliation."[118] The Anti-Defamation League also stated "Whatever his views may be on the administration's response to 9/11 and the conduct of the war on terrorism, likening it to Hitler's rise to power and Nazism is odious and demeans the victims of 9/11 and the brave American men and women engaged in the war on terror. Furthermore, it demonstrates a profound lack of understanding about the horrors that Hitler and his Nazi regime perpetrated."
Clarification[edit]When later questioned about his comments, Ellison told a reporter that Osama bin Laden, and not the Bush administration, was responsible for the attacks.[119] Ellison also said, "In the aftermath of a tragedy, space is opened up for governments to take action that they could not have achieved before that." He pointed to the Iraq War and provisions granting greater arrest and surveillance powers within the USA PATRIOT Act as examples.[120] Ellison said also "In response to a question, I stated that the Bush Administration exploited post-9/11 fears to advance a policy agenda that has undermined our civil liberties. I stand by this statement. ...I want to be clear that the murderous Nazi regime is historically distinct and the horror of the Holocaust must be acknowledged as a unique event in human history. I did not intend any direct comparison between the totalitarian state of Nazi Germany and the current administration. I have taken consistent and strong stands against Holocaust denial throughout my life in public service."
[edit]Representative Bill Sali of Idaho drew criticism for his comments in an August 8, 2007 interview with the conservative Christian-based American Family News Network. Sali, an outspoken Evangelical Christian, denounced the Senate leadership for allowing a Hindu to lead the opening prayer, claiming that the non-Christian invocation threatened to endanger America by removing "the protective hand of God."[121] He went on to say, "We have not only a Hindu prayer being offered in the Senate, we have a Muslim member of the House of Representatives now, Keith Ellison from Minnesota. Those are changes and they are not what was envisioned by the Founding Fathers. The principles that this country was built on, that have made it great over these centuries, were Christian principles derived from Scripture. You know the Lord can make the rain fall on the just and the unjust alike."[citation needed]
Former Democratic Idaho congressman Richard Stallings, among others, demanded that Sali either apologize or resign. In response Sali sent Ellison an email saying he "meant no offense."[122] Ellison was in Iraq with a congressional delegation. His spokesperson said "The congressman just doesn't respond to comments like that."[123] Sali stressed to reporters that he was not calling for Ellison to be removed, saying, "He got elected the same way I did. People certainly have the right to elect anyone they want",[123] but he defended his claim about America's founding principles, saying, "The idea that somehow we can move to multiculturalism and still remain the same '-- I think that's a little dangerous, too. From my standpoint, I believe the Founding Fathers were overwhelmingly Christian and the God they were talking about is the God of the Bible."[123] When asked about his policy discussions with those of other faiths, Sali said, "I would say, 'These are principles that I think are important,' and if he agrees with those, great. At the end of the game, maybe it does get down to religious beliefs and how they impact how you make public policy."[123] It was noted in a New York Sun editorial that claims that the founders did not anticipate Muslim legislators are incorrect.[124] The specific subject was brought up in many of the State conventions to ratify the Constitution, including remarks by William Lancaster in the 1788 North Carolina Ratifying Convention.[124][125]
Ellison was chosen by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee for its Trailblazer Award. The group said Ellison "has established a career of advocacy focused on promoting civil and human rights, peace, and prosperity for working families."[126] He was named an Utne Reader visionary in 2011.[127]
In January 2014, Ellison's first book, My Country 'Tis of Thee,[128] was published.
Electoral history[edit]Minnesota House of Representatives
Minnesota House of Representatives - District 58B, 2004[129]PartyCandidateVotes%±%DemocraticKeith Ellison10,79684.1+17.6RepublicanJay Ceril Mastrud1,98815.5+1.49Minnesota House of Representatives - District 58B, 2002[130]PartyCandidateVotes%±%DemocraticKeith Ellison5,71466.54-RepublicanLarissa Presho1,21214.11-IndependentDuane K. Reed7268.45-GreenBonnie J. Smith4805.59-IndependenceJay Ceril Mastrud4405.12-US House of Representatives
Minnesota 5th congressional district election, 2014[131]PartyCandidateVotes%±%DemocraticKeith Ellison167,07970.8-3.7RepublicanDoug Daggett56,57724.0-1.2IndependenceLee Bauer12,0015.1-Minnesota 5th congressional district election, 2010PartyCandidateVotes%±%DemocraticKeith Ellison154,83367.7-3.2RepublicanJoel Demos55,22224.1+2.1IndependentLynn Torgerson8,5483.7-IndependenceTom Schrunk7,4463.3-3.6See also[edit]References[edit]^ abcdRobson, Britt (2006-08-30). "Running Man". City Pages. Retrieved 2009-09-25. ^MacFarquhar, Neil (2006-10-11). "Muslim's Election Is Celebrated Here and in Mideast". New York Times. Retrieved 2006-10-11. ^ ab"Keith: The value system that's behind my candidacy" July 19, 2006. Star Tribune. Accessed January 3, 2007.^ abcdRochelle Olson (November 19, 2006). "First Muslim on his way to Congress '' he will represent Minnesota, Islam". Mcclatchy Newspapers. Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved December 6, 2006. ^Smiley, Travis (2006-10-02). "Keith Ellison". PBS.org. Retrieved 2010-04-02. ^"Press Release: Ellison, Jewish Council For Public Affairs Join Forces To Fight Hunger". Retrieved 8 May 2012. ^"Parent Newsletter for the Week of December 4, 2006 '-- Congratulations to all Our Newly Elected Cubs". University of Detroit Jesuit High School and Academy. December 4, 2005. ^Martiga Lohn (September 14, 2006). "Islamic Convert Wins House Nomination". The Washington Post. Associated Press. ^Todd Melby (September 17, 2006). "Keith Ellison may be first Muslim in U.S. Congress". The Boston Globe. ^Michael Isikoff (January 4, 2007). "'I'm a Sunni Muslim'". Newsweek. ^ ab"Keith Ellison (DFL) 58B". Minnesota House of Representatives. Archived from the original on September 24, 2006. ^Condon, Patrick (2006-07-06). "Muslim seeks both House seat and a place in history". The Bay State Banner. Associated Press. Retrieved 2009-04-25. ^ abEllison official campaign biography. Retrieved September 24, 2009.^ abcde"Making the choice"(PDF). Session Weekly '-- Minnesota House of Representatives. January 24, 2003. p. 16. Retrieved December 14, 2006. ^"Ellison may become the first Muslim in US Congress" September 13, 2006. American Muslim Perspective Online Magazine. Retrieved January 4, 2007.^Late campaign reports were her doing, Ellison's wife says July 15, 2006. Star Tribune. Accessed December 26, 2013.^"Keith Ellison and wife, Kim, file for legal separation". Retrieved 5 June 2012. ^"Register of Actions Case No. 27-FA-11-7451 In the Marriage of Keith Maurice Ellison vs Kim Dore Ellison". ^"About Keith:bio, Keith Ellison for Congress". Archived from the original on January 4, 2007. Retrieved January 7, 2007. ^Khoo, Michael (August 10, 2003). "A conservative sweep". Minnesota Public Radio. ^"Minnesota Public Radio". Electionresults.publicradio.org. 2006-11-08. Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^"Unofficial Results Primary". Minnesota Secretary of State. 2006-12-25. Retrieved December 25, 2006. ^ abcKersten, Katherine (2006-09-17). "The excuses keep on coming for Ellison's behavior". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on 2006-10-04. Retrieved 2006-11-04. ^"KSTP Report August 16th, 2006 (Microsoft ActiveX)". Kstp.dayport.com. Archived from the original on December 10, 2007. Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^Aron Kahn (November 8, 2006). "Ellison breaks ground as Muslim, black". St. Paul Pioneer Press. ^"Unofficial Results General Election". Minnesota Secretary of State. November 7, 2006. ^"Ellison, on verge of historic first term, unruffled by critics". Associated Press. January 3, 2007. Retrieved January 3, 2007. ^Rob Hotakainen (January 25, 2007). "Will Ellison pursue impeachment? Not for now, he says". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on February 14, 2007. Retrieved January 27, 2007. ^"U.S. House of Representatives Roll Call Votes 110th Congress '-- 1st Session (2007)". The Clerk of the House. Retrieved 2007-01-16. ^"H.R. 4386 - All Actions". United States Congress. Retrieved 4 May 2014. ^Radio, Dalsan (7 May 2014). "Somalia: Congressman Ellison's Money Remittances Improvement Act Passed". All Africa. Retrieved 8 May 2014. ^"Ellison, Paulsen, Duffy Applaud Passage of Money Remittances Improvement Act". House Office of Keith Ellison. 6 May 2014. Retrieved 8 May 2014. ^"Ellison's 1st Bill To End Bad Credit Card Practice". Associated Press. May 2, 2007. ^Ellison has been accused of lying about having been on the Foreign Affairs Committee by (now) former political adversary Chris Fields as well as a distortions such as one by Awr Hawkins (via a breitbart.com article). (To listen to the radio debate see LINK.)This accusation is unwarranted. The Democrats had control of the House during the 110th Congress (233 & 202 seats) and the 111th Congress (256 & 178 seats). However, the Democrats lost control in the 112th Congress (193 & 242 seats) and the 113th Congress (200 & 233 seats). The number of seats on House Committees are allocated according to which party has control, and generally by a ratio of how much control. Thus, Ellison did have membership on the Foreign Affairs and Judiciary Committees at one time, but no longer has such membership.^Anderson, Mitch (January 21, 2009). "Ellison gets Foreign Affairs seat". StarTribune. Retrieved October 19, 2012. ^http://ellison.house.gov/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=207:press-release-ellison-accepts-appointment-to-foreign-affairs-committee&catid=1:latest&Itemid=16^"Connecting with Government with Representative Keith Ellison Event Information". Retrieved October 26, 2012. ^Diaz, Kevin (December 1, 2010). "Ellison elected co-chair of House Progressive Caucus". Star Tribune. Retrieved August 31, 2011. ^"NARAL 2011 CONGRESSIONAL RECORD ON CHOICE MINNESOTA". Retrieved 6 June 2012. ^"MINNESOTA DISTRICT 05 Rep. Keith Ellison (D) is pro-choice.". Retrieved 6 June 2012. ^"Ellison Condemns Kansas Physician Slaying". Retrieved 6 June 2012. ^"BBC World Service - Programmes - America's first Muslim Congressman". Bbc.co.uk. 2010-11-12. Retrieved 2011-05-13. ^Brian Voerding (May 25, 2007). "Walz breaks rank, supports war funds". Winona Daily News. ^Diaz, Kevin (2007-01-08). "Minnesota delegation offers cool response". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on October 21, 2007. Retrieved 2007-01-09. ^ abcdFrederic J. Frommer (January 10, 2007). "Rep. Ellison Wants Forces Out of Iraq". The Washington Post. Associated Press. Retrieved January 13, 2007. ^"Ellison votes with majority on contempt citations against White House aides". Associated Press. July 25, 2007. ^"Ellison signs as cosponsor of bill to impeach Cheney". Associated Press. June 29, 2007. Archived from the original on July 2, 2007. ^ abMike Kaszuba. "Atheists applaud Ellison's views on Cheney, Libby, 9/11". Star Tribune. ^Ellison becomes first Minnesota official to link Summer Olympics and China policies from MinnPost.com^Rhee, Foon (April 26, 2009). "McGovern, other lawmakers arrested at Darfur protest". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2009-04-26. ^Seitz-Wald, Alex (October 12, 2015). "Keith Ellison hands Bernie Sanders his second congressional endorsement". MSNBC. ^ abc"House Speaker Pelosi, Ellison, Tour Jerusalem". Associated Press. March 31, 2007. ^ abc"Ellison, Pelosi Meet with Israeli Officials". Associated Press. April 1, 2007. ^ abFrederic Frommer (April 8, 2007). "Rep.: Israel Said No Syria Attack Plan". Associated Press. ^ ab"Congressional Delegation Statement on Middle East Trip". April 5, 2007. ^ ab"Pelosi raises issue of female politicians in Saudi Arabia". Associated Press. April 5, 2001. ^ abcdJake Sherman (July 29, 2007). "Ellison is part of Iraq trip arranged by Defense chief". Star Tribune. ^"Ellison returns from trip to Iraq". USA Today. Associated Press. July 30, 2007. ^"Pawlenty makes surprise trip to Iraq". MPR. February 10, 2004. ^ abKevin Diaz and Jake Sherman (August 1, 2007). "Ellison to take weeklong trip to Israel". Star Tribune. ^ abUS congressman Keith Ellison on Gaza. Al Jazeera English. Published January 6, 2009.^Ellison, Keith. "Gaza And Sderot Movie". Retrieved 6 June 2012. ^Ellison, Keith. "End the Gaza blockade to achieve peace". www.washingtonpost.com. The Washington Post. Retrieved 29 July 2014. ^"Brian Views Destruction in Gaza '' Calls for Immediate Relief and Change in Policy". House.gov. 2009-02-19. Archived from the original on February 23, 2009. Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^ ab"Congressmen view destruction in Gaza, Call for immediate relief and change in policy". Retrieved 6 June 2012. ^Schonheyder, Caroline. "Lessons From Peace Diplomacy Inspire Representative Keith Ellison On Visit To Norway". Embassy of Norway. ^Diaz, Kevin. "Ellison going to Norway to study peace and justice". Star Tribune. ^Diaz, Kevin. "Ellison upbeat after visit to Africa". Star Tribune. Retrieved 26 July 2012. ^Guttman, Nathan. "The "Other Muslim" in Congress". The Jewish Daily Forward. ^"Local Muslims Aim for Greater Political Involvement". 10 December 2006. ^Michelle Boorstein (November 30, 2006). "More Muslims Gaining Political Ground". Washington Post. Retrieved December 10, 2006. ^Rob Hotakainen (November 30, 2006). "Oath on Qur'an: Activism or an act of faith?". Star Tribune. ^"North American Imams Federation conference booklet"(PDF). Imamsofamerica.com. Retrieved 2011-05-13. ^"North American Imams Federation Web site". Imamsofamerica.com. Retrieved 2011-05-13. ^Francie Grace (2006-11-21). "6 Muslim Imams Removed From Plane". Cbsnews.com. Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^"Ellison seeks meeting on removal of clerics". Web.archive.org. 2006-11-24. Archived from the original on 2006-11-30. Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^ abc"North American Imams' Federation conference booklet"(PDF). North American Imams Federation. ^"6 Muslim Imams Removed From Plane". Star and Tribune. November 21, 2006. Retrieved December 11, 2006. ^Rochelle Olson (November 24, 2006). "Ellison seeks meeting on removal of clerics". Star Tribune. ^ abNiraj Warikoo (December 27, 2006). "Ellison says faith won't be exploited". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved December 28, 2006. ^ abcdefghijklKevin Diaz (March 7, 2007). "Ellison taking on role in U.S. image building". McClatchy News Service. ^Dennis Prager (November 28, 2006). "America, Not Keith Ellison, decides what book a congressman takes his oath on". Retrieved December 4, 2006. ^Allison Keyes (December 24, 2006). ""Rep. Goode Launches Debate over Muslims in Office" Weekend Edition Sunday". National Public Radio. ^Erika Howsare (2006-12-19). "Anti-Muslim letter goes out to hundreds'--not all are amused". Retrieved December 20, 2006. ^"Muslim congressman shakes critic's hand". CNN. January 4, 2007. Retrieved January 8, 2007. ^Frommer, Frederic J. (2007-01-04). "Ellison Uses Thomas Jefferson's Quran". The Washington Post. Associated Press. Retrieved 2007-01-06. ^Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts (January 3, 2007). "But It's Thomas Jefferson's Koran!". The Washington Post. p. C03. Retrieved January 3, 2007. ^FREDERIC J. FROMMER (January 3, 2007). "Congressman to Be Sworn in Using Quran". AP via ABC News. ^Hayes, Kevin J. How Thomas Jefferson Read the Qur'an. Early American Literature '-- Volume 39, Number 2, 2004, pp. 247''261 The University of North Carolina Press. an abstract can be read at this link^President Barack Obama (June 4, 2009). "Transcript: Obama Seeks 'New Beginning' In Cairo". NPR. Retrieved June 4, 2009. ^ abGlenn Beck (November 14, 2006). "First Muslim Congressman Speaks Out". CNN. Retrieved December 11, 2006. ^"Keith Ellison first Muslim congressman". Spokesman Review. Associated Press. November 11, 2006. Retrieved November 16, 2006. ^Averill, Brady (November 17, 2006). "For freshmen on Capitol Hill, it's the luck of the draw". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on November 14, 2007. Retrieved 2006-11-19. ^Scott D. Pierce (January 11, 2007). "Beck is in a Catch-22". Deseret News. ^ abcdefCooperman, Alan (2006-09-11). "Muslim Candidate Plays Defense". Washington Post (The Washington Post Company). p. A03. Retrieved 2006-09-11. ^"Minnesota Daily archive". Mndaily.com. Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^"Minnesota Daily archive". Mndaily.com. Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^Brodkorb, Michael. "MDE FROM THE ARCHIVES: ELLISON'S EXTREMISMS". Retrieved 6 June 2012. ^Scott W. Johnson (2006-10-09). "Louis Farrakhan's First Congressman". The Weekly Standard (News America Incorporated). Retrieved 2006-11-13. ^"Candidate finds past ties a real bind". Chicago Tribune. June 30, 2006. p. 7. ^Lee Hudson Teslik (September 13, 2006). "A Muslim for the Hill?". Newsweek. Archived from the original on January 4, 2007. Retrieved January 3, 2007. ^Rochelle Olson (October 24, 2006). "Minnesotan campaigns to be the first Muslim elected to Congress". McClatchy Newspapers. Retrieved January 3, 2007. ^"GOP's attack on Ellison focuses on U.S. Muslim". Minneapolis Star and Tribune. September 17, 2006. ^Brandt Williams (October 18, 2006). "Sparks fly at 5th District debate". Minnesota Public Radio. ^Rochelle, Olson (2006-10-11). "Lee posts photo with Sabo; Fine ad attacks Ellison". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on October 23, 2007. Retrieved 2006-11-04. At the same time, Republican Alan Fine on Thursday pressed on with attacks against Ellison, sending a mailing to 100,000 voters criticizing Ellison for accepting campaign contributions from leaders of the Council for American Islamic Relations (CAIR). ^"Parvez Ahmed and Nihad Awad: Reject the political Muslim-bashing smears". Star Tribune. 2006-10-20. Archived from the original on October 25, 2007. Retrieved 2006-11-04. There has been much sound and fury in certain circles about the American Muslim community's support for Keith Ellison and his campaign to represent Minnesota's Fifth Congressional District. ^"Findings and Order in the Matter of the Committee to Ellect Keith Ellison"(PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^"Campaign Finance and Disclosure Board Conciliation Agreement"(PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^"Compilation of Board Minutes in which Ellison was fined". Cfbreport.state.mn.us. Retrieved 2010-11-03. ^Lopez, Patricia; Mike Kaszuba (2006-07-15). "Late campaign reports were her doing, Ellison's wife says". Star Tribune. ^Smith, Dane; Pat Doyle (2006-07-08). "Late filings a pattern for Ellison". Star Tribune. p. 18. ^ abBush like Hitler, says first Muslim in Congress,^Brit Hume (July 12, 2007). "Wait Until You Hear Who's Comparing the Bush Administration to Nazi Germany". Fox News. ^John Gibson (July 16, 2007). "What I Think About Rep. Keith Ellison Comparing Bush to Hitler". Fox News. ^Jackie Kucinich (July 18, 2007). "Reps. Cantor, Wamp blast Ellison for 9/11 comments". The Hill. ^Kersten, Katherine (2007-07-12). "Ellison's use of Reichstag fire goes overboard". Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN). ^"Ellison cites Reichstag burning in attacking Bush policies". 2007-07-13. ^Jim Brown (August 8, 2007). "Idaho congressman disturbed by Hindu prayer in Senate, election of Muslim to House". OneNewsNow.com. ^Todd Dvorak (August 18, 2007). "Lawmaker Apologizes for Muslim Remarks". Associated Press. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. ^ abcdGregory Hahn (August 10, 2007). "Sali clarifies his stance on Muslim congressman". Idaho Statesman. ^ ab"Binding Ellison". New York Sun Editorial. December 6, 2006. ^"Debate in North Carolina Ratifying Convention; 30 July 1788". ^Niraj Warikoo (May 17, 2007). "Arab-American group to award Rep. Keith Ellison". ^"Representative Keith Ellison: Muslim Patriot". Utne Reader. November''December 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011. ^http://www.msnbc.com/morning-joe/excerpt-keith-ellisons-new-book^"Election results: Minnesota: State Legislative". Minnesota Public Radio. 2004. Retrieved December 16, 2006. ^"2002 General Election Results '' Minnesota Secretary of State". 2003-05-23. Retrieved December 14, 2006. ^"Ballotpedia: Minnesota's 5th Congressional District elections, 2014". Retrieved October 12, 2014. ^"2012 General Election Results '' Minnesota Secretary of State". 2012-11-06. Retrieved November 9, 2012. External links[edit]Majority (Republican) party leadersMinority (Democratic) party leaders
Hillary Clinton and George and Amal Clooney Fundraiser costs $353k - Fortune
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 13:22
March 25, 2016, 12:41 PM EDTE-mailTweetFacebookLinkedinShare iconsThey say whoever has the gold makes the rules. And if you happen to have $353,000 laying around, you'll have the chance to whisper some potential rules into Hillary Clinton's ear, not before you rub elbows with movie star George Clooney.
According to a report in Politico, Clooney and his wife attorney Amal Clooney will be sitting at the head table of an April 15th fundraiser in San Francisco along with Clinton. To sit alongside the candidate and her celebrity pals, donors just need to raise a cool $353,000.
''The Bay Area fundraiser, hosted at the home of venture capitalist Shervin Pishevar, is one of two events starring the Clooneys,'' the report reads. ''On April 16, Clinton and the Clooneys will reunite at the Clooney Los Angeles mansion, where tickets cost $33,400 per person to dine at the table with one of Hollywood's most glamorous couples.''
The fundraiser is for The Hillary Victory Fund, a joint fundraising committee for Hillary for America, the Democratic National Committee and the Democratic committees of 32 states and Puerto Rico. The fact that it is a coordinating committee and not the campaign itself allows it to raise far more than the $2,700 per person limit the Clinton campaign itself is forced to observe.
8 Things You Need To Know About Ted Cruz's Sex Scandal - Conservative Outfitters
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 14:24
Home / News / 8 Things You Need To Know About Ted Cruz's Sex ScandalMarch 25, 2016
TEXAS - The National Enquirer just dropped a bombshell on the Cruz campaign and the internet exploded overnight. Reports claim investigators found Ted Cruz allegedly had an affair with five different women. UPDATE #1:Ted Cruz Denies Affair. UPDATE #2:Trump Responds.
According to the Enquirer:
''Private detectives are digging into at least five affairs Ted Cruz supposedly had,'' claimed a Washington insider. ''The leaked details are an attempt to destroy what's left of his White House campaign!'' The ENQUIRER reports that Cruz's claimed mistresses include a foxy political consultant and a high-placed D.C. attorney!
The publication did not name names and only printed pixelated photos. Internet users on Twitter, Reddit and 4chan quickly went to work to determine the identity of all five women while using the hashtag #CruzSexScandal.
1. The National Enquirer Was Right About John Edwards, Tiger Woods and Jesse Jackson
Surprisingly The National Enquirer has a good track record reporting scandals like this. This same magazine broke the John Edwards scandal, Tiger Woods scandal, Jesse Jackson scandal, and the Gary Hart scandal.
2. Washington Times Reporter Confirms Story
Drew Johnson of the Washington Times confirmed on Twitter Thursday night that two of Ted Cruz's mistresses named by the National Enquirer are accurate.
3. Breitbart Had Story But Chose Not To Publish
Breitbart reporter Allum Bokhari confirmed on twitter he was scooped. Breitbart had the story about Ted Cruz's affair back in February but did not publish. Ben Shapiro?
4. #CruzSexScandal Is Trending on Twitter
5. The Internet Claims To Have Identified Who Most Of The Women Are
6. Donald Trump Spokeswoman Katrina Pierson Made Her Instagram Private Last Night
Donald Trump spokeswoman Katrina Pierson made her Instagram private last night after #CruzSexScandal started trending online. Pierson previously worked for Ted Cruz.
7. Texas Police Report From 2005 Claims Heidi Cruz Was "A Danger To Herself" When Officers Found Her Sitting Near Austin Expressway
8. Cruz Allegedly Paid "Hush Money" To Carly Fiorina
Sarah Isgur Flores worked for Carly Fiorina as deputy campaign manager. In July 2015 an unusual $500,000 donation was made by Ted Cruz-affiliated Super PAC, Keep the Promise to Carly Fiorina's official campaign fund.
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Is It Now A Hate Crime To Support Donald Trump On A College Campus? | The Daily Caller
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 13:18
In response to students demanding the school formally denounce Trump, Emory President James Wagner expressed sympathy with the aggrieved students and felt they had legitimate concerns. (RELATED: Emory Students Complain School Is 'Unsafe' Because Administrators Tolerate Trump Support)
Wagner said the incident provided the impetus for the university to implement ''immediate refinements to certain policy and procedural deficiencies, regular and structured opportunities for difficult dialogues, a formal process to institutionalize identification, review and [the] addressing of social justice opportunities and issues and a commitment to an annual retreat to renew our efforts.''
The student government went further in its concern over the very, very troubling situation and issued a statement that gave credence to the notion the messages jeopardized campus safety.
''[B]y nature of the fact that for a significant portion of our student population, the messages represent particularly bigoted opinions, policies, and rhetoric directed at populations represented at Emory University, we would like to express our concern regarding the values espoused by the messages displayed, and our sympathy for the pain experienced by members of our community,'' the body's Wednesday statement read.
There was even a surprising voice expressing solidarity with the outraged students '-- prominent libertarian writer Jeffrey Tucker. In an interview with Reason magazine, Tucker '-- who was on campus at the time Trump markings sent students into a frenzy '-- said the messages were clearly done for the purpose of racial intimidation.
''It was like cross burning,'' the libertarian told Reason's Robby Soave. Tucker has clearly come a long way from his alleged involvement with the notorious Ron Paul Newsletters in the 1980s and 90s.
In the bubble that Emory University seems to exist in, these markings represent a serious public hazard. In the real world, this uproar represents one of the silliest examples of campus insanity yet.
At worst, these harmless chalk messages should be considered a juvenile prank and promptly scraped away. Even though they probably violated some minor code about unauthorized markings on campus, the slogans declaring ''Trump 2016'' still represent a form of political speech. The most offensive marking merely said ''Build that wall.''
No matter how much students may be offended by the golden-haired billionaire, Trump is now apart of our standard discourse. There's no way you can wish him away through an arbitrarily-enforced and undemocratic safe space.
In declaring that the school should be free of any problematic mentions of The Donald, Emory essentially endorsed the idea of political censorship and proclaimed itself as an institution totally opposed to Trump.
So much for the idea of a neutral university that serves as a marketplace of ideas.
As the election season continues with no sign of Trump disappearing from sight and the mogul inching closer to the GOP nomination, it's bound similar incidents like Emory's hoopla will occur at other campuses with the exact same results.
No matter what the circumstances, college administrators will capitulate to the demands of offended students and issue statements that could be construed as Trump denunciations.
It's worth noting that Emory's president at first vowed to send no such condemnation, then conceded and drafted a mealy-mouthed letter of understanding to students. Wagner's flexible spine is just another example of the strong fortitude university officials demonstrate in the face of safe space agitators.
With the strong possibility of more campus outrage over pro-Trump displays, it comes with the impression that expressing support for the Republican front-runner at a university setting is tantamount to a hate crime.
If ''Trump 2016'' marked out in chalk can be found to be in the same league as a cross burning, what's stopping the campus mobs from claiming a student's Trump sticker on a personal laptop is a form of racial intimidation? Or the sight of a red ''Make America Great Again'' hat is liable to cause permanent emotional damage?
You can bet on a Trump-supporting student sometime soon facing repercussions from the school over his or her display of Donald fandom. It just takes a small, yet dedicated number of students hailing from a protected class to complain to make it happen.
It makes you wonder how colleges will handle Trump becoming president if students can't even bear to see his name. Will they institute a policy to ban mentions of the commander in chief to protect the feelings of the snowflake totalitarians?
The Emory affair once again reveals to the country how our college campuses have been overrun with protesters who will exploit their protected class status to stifle free speech and isolate campuses from the American mainstream.
No wonder millions of Americans view political correctness as a threat to our society.
Follow Scott on Twitter
In response to students demanding the school formally denounce Trump, Emory President James Wagner expressed sympathy with the aggrieved students and felt they had legitimate concerns. (RELATED: Emory Students Complain School Is 'Unsafe' Because Administrators Tolerate Trump Support)
Wagner said the incident provided the impetus for the university to implement ''immediate refinements to certain policy and procedural deficiencies, regular and structured opportunities for difficult dialogues, a formal process to institutionalize identification, review and [the] addressing of social justice opportunities and issues and a commitment to an annual retreat to renew our efforts.''
The student government went further in its concern over the very, very troubling situation and issued a statement that gave credence to the notion the messages jeopardized campus safety.
''[B]y nature of the fact that for a significant portion of our student population, the messages represent particularly bigoted opinions, policies, and rhetoric directed at populations represented at Emory University, we would like to express our concern regarding the values espoused by the messages displayed, and our sympathy for the pain experienced by members of our community,'' the body's Wednesday statement read.
There was even a surprising voice expressing solidarity with the outraged students '-- prominent libertarian writer Jeffrey Tucker. In an interview with Reason magazine, Tucker '-- who was on campus at the time Trump markings sent students into a frenzy '-- said the messages were clearly done for the purpose of racial intimidation.
''It was like cross burning,'' the libertarian told Reason's Robby Soave. Tucker has clearly come a long way from his alleged involvement with the notorious Ron Paul Newsletters in the 1980s and 90s.
In the bubble that Emory University seems to exist in, these markings represent a serious public hazard. In the real world, this uproar represents one of the silliest examples of campus insanity yet.
At worst, these harmless chalk messages should be considered a juvenile prank and promptly scraped away. Even though they probably violated some minor code about unauthorized markings on campus, the slogans declaring ''Trump 2016'' still represent a form of political speech. The most offensive marking merely said ''Build that wall.''
No matter how much students may be offended by the golden-haired billionaire, Trump is now apart of our standard discourse. There's no way you can wish him away through an arbitrarily-enforced and undemocratic safe space.
In declaring that the school should be free of any problematic mentions of The Donald, Emory essentially endorsed the idea of political censorship and proclaimed itself as an institution totally opposed to Trump.
So much for the idea of a neutral university that serves as a marketplace of ideas.
As the election season continues with no sign of Trump disappearing from sight and the mogul inching closer to the GOP nomination, it's bound similar incidents like Emory's hoopla will occur at other campuses with the exact same results.
No matter what the circumstances, college administrators will capitulate to the demands of offended students and issue statements that could be construed as Trump denunciations.
It's worth noting that Emory's president at first vowed to send no such condemnation, then conceded and drafted a mealy-mouthed letter of understanding to students. Wagner's flexible spine is just another example of the strong fortitude university officials demonstrate in the face of safe space agitators.
With the strong possibility of more campus outrage over pro-Trump displays, it comes with the impression that expressing support for the Republican front-runner at a university setting is tantamount to a hate crime.
If ''Trump 2016'' marked out in chalk can be found to be in the same league as a cross burning, what's stopping the campus mobs from claiming a student's Trump sticker on a personal laptop is a form of racial intimidation? Or the sight of a red ''Make America Great Again'' hat is liable to cause permanent emotional damage?
You can bet on a Trump-supporting student sometime soon facing repercussions from the school over his or her display of Donald fandom. It just takes a small, yet dedicated number of students hailing from a protected class to complain to make it happen.
It makes you wonder how colleges will handle Trump becoming president if students can't even bear to see his name. Will they institute a policy to ban mentions of the commander in chief to protect the feelings of the snowflake totalitarians?
The Emory affair once again reveals to the country how our college campuses have been overrun with protesters who will exploit their protected class status to stifle free speech and isolate campuses from the American mainstream.
No wonder millions of Americans view political correctness as a threat to our society.
Follow Scott on Twitter
Brussels
Pro-IS Media Group Threatens Belgium, Germany, and UK in Video
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 00:36
NOTE: The following materials are for information purposes only and may not be copied, reproduced, or transmitted without the explicit permission of SITE Intelligence Group and specific attribution to SITE Intelligence Group.
DetailsMultimediaCreated: 25 March 2016
Al-Thabaat ("Constancy") Media Foundation, a pro-Islamic State (IS) jihadi media group, released a video threatening that IS supporters will "invade" Berlin, Brussels, and London. Register to read more ...
Journalist verdacht van terrorisme in Brussel | Telegraaf.nl
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 13:54
zaterdag 26 maart 2016, 12:57 Fay§al Cheffou. (C) Screenshot VRTEen Belgische freelance journalist en activist, Fay§al Cheffou, wordt verdacht van terrorisme. Justitie heeft zaterdag in Brussel bevestigd dat Cheffou wegens ,,terroristische moord en poging tot terroristische moord'' vastzit. Hij is volgens Belgische media de voortvluchtige 'man met het hoedje'.
De krant Le Soir berichtte eerder op zaterdag dat Cheffou de derde dader van de aanslagen dinsdag op het vliegveld Zaventem zou zijn. Die blies zich niet op en verdween uit beeld terwijl zijn bompakket onontploft achterbleef. Hij droeg dinsdag een hoedje.
Herkend door taxichauffeurCheffou werd donderdag in Brussel aangehouden. Le Soir stelde zaterdag dat hij daarna is herkend door de taxichauffeur die de drie terroristen afzette bij de luchthaven. Dat waren Ibrahim El Bakraoui (29) en Najim Laachraoui (24) en volgens Belgische media de 30-jarige Cheffou.
El Bakraoui en Laachraoui bliezen zich met hun bommen op in de vertrekhal van het Brusselse vliegveld. De derde terrorist, met een hoed op, deed dat niet. Hij werd door de laatste ontploffing omver geblazen, berichtten Belgische media zaterdag. Daardoor raakte hij gescheiden van zijn bompakket dat later is teruggevonden. Hij heeft na de aanslagen de luchthaven verlaten.
'Geen onbekende'Cheffou is geen onbekende van de autoriteiten in Brussel. Hij heeft het als verslaggever en als verkondiger van extremistische boodschappen aan vluchtelingen herhaaldelijk aan de stok met de autoriteiten gehad. Ook de burgemeester van Brussel, Yvan Mayeur, klaagde eerder over Cheffou.
Het Belgische Openbaar Ministerie heeft ook bekendgemaakt dat er donderdag en vrijdag nog meer verdachten zijn aangehouden. Als gevolg van de arrestatie donderdag in een Parijse voorstad van een belangrijke terreurverdachte, heeft de Belgische politie een als Rabah N. omschreven man aangehouden. Hij wordt verdacht van ,,deelname aan de activiteiten van een terroristische groep''. Voorts is vrijdag in Brussel Abderahmane Ameroud wegens dezelfde verdenking opgepakt. Twee andere arrestanten zijn snel weer vrijgelaten.
#BrusselsAttacks#Zaventem Prosecution doesn't comment on journalist Faycal Cheffou as 3d suspect. pic.twitter.com/Va4BkqKyZF
'-- Anna van Densky (@annaeureporter) March 26, 2016Info @lesoir: Fay§al Cheffou identifi(C) comme le 3e homme du commando de Zaventem https://t.co/bxMueMASRKpic.twitter.com/puOgmhoQJA
'-- Le Soir (@lesoir) March 26, 2016Meer artikelen in Nieuws
Belgian nuclear plant guard is murdered and has his security pass stolen | Daily Mail Online
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 13:58
Belgian security services are fearful that ISIS operatives may have been looking to target a nuclear plant as it emerged two workers from a plant in Doel fled to Syria to join ISIS.
One of the men, reportedly known as Ilyass Boughalab, is believed to have been killed in Syria, while the second served a short prison sentence in Belgium for terror-related offences in 2014.
With an extensive understanding of nuclear facilities, the convict's short jail sentence has raised further questioned of the Belgian security services as well as fears he may have passed on important knowledge about the sites to the terrorist group.
Didier Prospero, pictured, who was a security guard at the Tihange Nuclear power plant, was found shot dead in his bathroom beside his beloved pet sheepdog Beauce. No gun was found at the scene of the crime
The Tihange nuclear power plant in Belgium, where the guard worked. Nuclear power plants are known to be targets for the terror network behind the Brussels bombings and the Paris attacks in November
The shocking revelations come after the police claimed that the death of a security guard at a nuclear facility is being treated as a criminal act rather than a terror act.
Didier Prospero, who worked for G4S security at a Belgian nuclear research centre, was shot several times in the bathroom of his home in Froidchapelle, in the Charleroi region of Belgium.
His three children found his body after they returned from school on Thursday. Mr Prospero's sheepdog Beauce was reportedly lying dead next to him.
It had been feared the murder may be part of an ISIS plot to attack the facility and release radioactive waste into the atmosphere.
Or, the terrorists could have been planning to steal radioactive material to create a so-called dirty bomb.
Also, it is possible the terrorists wanted to sabotage a critical piece of machinery and cause the plant to meltdown, leading to a critical release of radioactive material.
Sebastien Berg, spokesman for the federal agency responsible for Belgium's nuclear industry said they were fearful of a bomb exploding inside a plant or terrorists conducting a 9/11-style attack using a hijacked aircraft.
Nuclear power plants are known to be targets for the terror network behind the Brussels bombings and the Paris attacks in November.
According to the New York Times, several employees working in the Belgian nuclear industry have had their security clearances revoked over potential ISIS plots.
Following last November's terror attack in Paris, Belgian police recovered surveillance footage of a senior nuclear official in the home of ISIS ringleader Mohamed Bakkali, who was arrested and is currently facing terrorism charges.
In a nation on high alert following this week's attacks, the report stokes fears about the possibility militants are seeking to get hold of nuclear material or planning to attack a nuclear site.
Such is the level of fear within the Belgian nuclear power industry, all non-essential staff at the Doel and Tihange power plants have been sent home.
A spokeswoman said: 'Only those who are really needed are staying, the other people were sent home.'
She said that for the foreseeable future Belgium's nuclear plants will continue operating with staffing levels similar to weekend service to ensure that no unauthorised personnel could gain access to the plants.
UN WARNS TERRORIST COULD CREATE A NUCLEAR BOMBTerrorists have the 'means, knowledge and information' to create a nuclear bomb, the head of the UN atomic watchdog has warned in the wake of the Brussels attacks.
The warnings of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Yukiya Amano come just days before world leaders meet for an important summit against 'nuclear terrorism'.
'Terrorism is spreading and the possibility of using nuclear material cannot be excluded,' Mr Amano told AFP.
'Member states need to have sustained interest in strengthening nuclear security.
'The countries which do not recognise the danger of nuclear terrorism are the biggest problem.'
According to the International Panel on Fissile Materials, enough plutonium and highly enriched uranium still exists to make 20,000 weapons of the magnitude that levelled Hiroshima in 1945.
A grapefruit-sized amount of plutonium can be fashioned into a nuclear weapon, and according to Mr Amano it is 'not impossible' that extremists could manage to make a 'primitive' device - if they got hold of the material.
'It is now an old technology and nowadays terrorists have the means, the knowledge and the information,' he said.
'Some 1,000 people work on sites like these. Their backgrounds are all checked thoroughly, but better safe than sorry.'
On Thursday, Derniere Heure newspaper had reported the suicide bombers who blew themselves up on Tuesday originally considered targeting a nuclear site, but a series of arrests of suspect militants forced them to speed up their plans and instead switch focus to the Belgian capital.
However, Charleroi prosecutors has reportedly played down reports of a connection between the murder and a planned terror attack, according to the Belga news agency.
Belga also said that the prosecutor had also denied media reports that the guard's access badge had gone missing.
There was no immediate independent confirmation from the prosecutor's office in Charleroi, about an hour's drive south of Brussels.
Late last year, investigators found a video tracking the movements of a man linked to the country's nuclear industry during a search of a flat as part of investigations into the Islamist militant attack on Paris on November 13 that killed 130 people.
The video, lasting several hours, showed footage of the entrance to a home in northern Belgium and the arrival and departure of the director of Belgium's nuclear research programme.
Interior minister Jan Jambon previously told Belgium's Parliament there was not a threat to the country's nuclear facilities last month
At the time, the interior minister said that while there was a threat 'to the person in question,' there was not one to the country's nuclear facilities.
He added: 'To date, we have no indication that there is a specific threat to the Belgian nuclear sites. The nuclear industry is one of the best protected areas.'
However, the European Union's counter-terrorism chief warned today that Belgium's network of nuclear power plants and other major infrastructure face the threat of a cyber-attack over the next five years.
'I would not be surprised if there was an attempt in the next five years to use the Internet to commit an attack,' Gilles de Kerchove told daily La Libre Belgique.
'It would take the form of entering the SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition), which is the nerve centre of a nuclear power plant, a dam, air traffic control centre or railroad switching station,' he added.
It comes as the head of the UN atomic watchdog also warned that terrorists have the 'means, knowledge and information' to create a nuclear bomb.
The warnings of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Yukiya Amano come just days before world leaders meet for an important summit against 'nuclear terrorism'.
Suicide bombers Khalid El Bakraoui, Ibrahim El Bakraoui and Najim Laachraoui who blew themselves up in the Brussels attacks
'Terrorism is spreading and the possibility of using nuclear material cannot be excluded,' Mr Amano told AFP.
'Member states need to have sustained interest in strengthening nuclear security.
'The countries which do not recognise the danger of nuclear terrorism are the biggest problem.'
Belgium's neighbours have raised concerns over the country's creaking nuclear plants for some time, after a series of problems ranging from leaks to cracks and an unsolved sabotage incident.
Doel 1, the country's oldest reactor, was originally shuttered in February 2015 under a law calling for the country's gradual phasing out of nuclear power, but the government then restarted it under an extension deal.
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Yukiya Amano confirmed that terrorists now hae the 'means, knowledge and information to create a nuclear bomb.
Amano said: 'Terrorism is spreading and the possibility of using nuclear material cannot be excluded. Member states need to have sustained interest in strengthening nuclear security. The countries which do not recognise the danger of nuclear terrorism are the biggest problem.'
Belgian authorities have arrested Faycal Cheffou, pictured, and charged him with terrorist offences
Around 50 leaders will meet in Washington on March 31 for a summit on ensuring that nuclear material in the world's roughly 1,000 atomic facilities is secure.
Major progress has already been made, with countries reducing stockpiles of nuclear material, experts say.
Japan, for example, is this month returning enough plutonium to make 50 nuclear bombs to the U.S.
But according to the International Panel on Fissile Materials, enough plutonium and highly enriched uranium still exists to make 20,000 weapons of the magnitude that levelled Hiroshima in 1945.
A grapefruit-sized amount of plutonium can be fashioned into a nuclear weapon, and according to Mr Amano it is 'not impossible' that extremists could manage to make a 'primitive' device - if they got hold of the material.
'It is now an old technology and nowadays terrorists have the means, the knowledge and the information,' he said.
But he said that a far likelier risk was a 'dirty bomb'.
Belgium media reports suggest Cheffou, a freelance journalist, is the third bomber pictured far right, walking through Brussels Airport before the attacks wearing a white coat and hat
This is a device using conventional explosives to disperse radioactive material other than uranium or plutonium.
Such material can be found in small quantities in universities, hospitals and other facilities the world over, often with little security.
'Dirty bombs will be enough to [drive[ any big city in the world into panic,' Mr Amano said. 'And the psychological, economic and political implications would be enormous.'
This is thought to be well within the capabilities of extremists, and ISIS has already used chemical weapons, according to CIA director John Brennan.
Probes into the Brussels attacks this week claimed that jihadis may have been plotting to steal nuclear material to create a radioactive bomb.
Meanwhile, prosecutors in Brussels have confirmed they have arrested and charged Faycal Cheffou, a freelance journalist, in connection with the Brussels attacks.
Cheffou was among six men arrested during a police raid on Thursday.
Ibrahim El Bakraoui, left, and Najim Laachraoui, right, who carried out the attack at Brussels Airport on Tuesday
He has been arrested for 'involvement in a terrorist group, terrorist killings and attempted terrorist killings'.
Belgian prosecutors have arrested and charged a new suspect in the Brussels terror attacks.
The federal prosecutor's office said in a statement today that a man identified as Faycal Cheffou, was one of six men detained in a police raid on Thursday.
The statement added that he has been charged with for 'involvement in a terrorist group, terrorist killings and attempted terrorist killings'.
Belgium media reports suggest Cheffou, a freelance journalist, is the third bomber pictured walking through Brussels Airport before the attacks. However that has not been confirmed by Belgian prosecutors.
But one source close to the investigation, said: 'That is a hypothesis the investigators are working on.'
Following his arrest, police raided his home although they failed to find any traces of explosives or weapons.
Reports in the Belgian media also say that the taxi driver who took the suicide bombers to the airport on Tuesday morning has said he believes the man wearing the white jacket and hat is Cheffou.
The aftermath of the explosions at Brussels airport in terror attacks on Tuesday. Today Belgian prosecutors have issued an arrest warrant for a new suspect in the terror attacks
Prosecutors also said a second man Aboubakar A. had also been charged with participation in the activities of a terrorist group.
Another suspect named as Rabah N. linked to a foiled plot in France was charged with taking part in terrorist activities.
Cheffou lived in a small studio in an apartment building just 500 metres from Maelbeek metro station, De Morgen reported.
Police cleared the building of all residents and spent five hours searching his small home, the paper said.
A resident heard investigators say they had not found weapons or explosives but had 'found enough'.
Cheffou, thought to be a freelance journalist, is known to the authorities for drugs and violence, the paper claimed.
It is also said his sister reported him to police in 2014 saying she was worried he was planning to go to Syria but was 'waiting the right moment'.
Race Hate Charge Over Brussels Tweet Dropped
Sat, 26 Mar 2016 16:24
A racial hatred charge has been dropped against a man who posted a controversial tweet in the wake of the Brussels terror attacks.
Matthew Doyle was arrested on Wednesday after a message on his Twitter profile read: "I confronted a Muslim women (sic) yesterday in Croydon. I asked her to explain Brussels.
"She said 'nothing to do with me'. A mealy mouthed reply."
Following an investigation by the Croydon Police Community Safety Unit, the 46-year-old was charged in the early hours of Friday morning.
But hours later, Scotland Yard announced Mr Doyle will face no further action - and his scheduled appearance at Camberwell Green Magistrates Court on Saturday was cancelled.
A police spokesman said: "Following discussion with the Crown Prosecution Service, Mr Doyle is no longer charged with the offence and will not be appearing in court.
"Police may not make charging decisions on offences under Section 19 of the Public Order Act. There will be further consultation with the CPS."
Mr Doyle had faced ridicule over the viral tweet, which was posted shortly after suicide bombings at an airport and on the metro system in the Belgian capital killed 31 people, injuring many hundreds more.
Enam Haque mockingly retorted: "I confronted a ferret and asked him to explain Donald Trump's hair. He said 'nothing to do with me'. A mealy mouthed response."
Meanwhile, Joe Heenan wrote: "I confronted my 5 yr old son yesterday. I asked him to explain the mortgage rates. He said 'I dunno, I like Batman'. A mealy mouthed reply."
Belgian Nuclear Guard Shot and Security Access Badge Stolen | News | teleSUR English
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 00:10
A security officer at a nuclear site was killed in the Belgian city of Charleroi two days after the terror attacks in Brussels.
Two days after bomb attacks at Brussels' airport and on a packed metro killed 31 people and injured hundreds, a security guard who worked at a Belgian nuclear plant was murdered and his pass was stolen, Belgian media reported on Saturday.
The French language Derniere Heure (DH) newspaper reported the security guard's badge was de-activated as soon as it was discovered he had been shot dead in the Charleroi region of Belgium and his badge stolen.
A police spokeswoman said she could not comment because an investigation was ongoing.
In a nation on high alert following this week's attacks, the report stokes fears about the possibility militants are seeking to get hold of nuclear material or planning to attack a nuclear site.
On Thursday, DH had reported the suicide bombers who blew themselves up on Tuesday originally considered targeting a nuclear site, but a series of arrests of suspect militants forced them to speed up their plans and instead switch focus to the Belgian capital.
Late last year, investigators found a video tracking the movements of a man linked to the country's nuclear industry during a search of a flat as part of investigations into the Islamist militant attack on Paris on Nov. 13 that killed 130 people.
The video, lasting several hours, showed footage of the entrance to a home in northern Belgium and the arrival and departure of the director of Belgium's nuclear research program.
Turkish Dictator and ISIS Terror Boss Erdogan Is Prime Suspect in March 22 Brussels Bombing TARPLEY.net
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 00:30
World Crisis RadioWith a Report from Thierry Meyssan in Damascus, SyriaMarch 26, 2016Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.
[download audio]
On the morning of the Brussels bombings of March 22, 2016,The Star (a Turkish newspaper which functions as the semi-official news organ of the Turkish dictator) headline with the accusation: ''Belgium A Terrorist State'' Pictures showed Kurdish flags with accusations that Belgium was supporting what The Star called Kurdish terrorism.
On March 23, a special edition of Erdogan's semiofficial newspaper The Star reports the bombings in Brussels by gloating: ''Belgium has been bitten by the snake she was feeding in her breast.'' The reference is to Erdogan's earlier speech of March 18, where he developed the snake metaphor as a clear threat to Belgium.
Thierry Meyssan reports from Damascus that Turkish President Erdogan is now widely regarded as the prime suspect in the March 22 terrorist bombing of Brussels, Belgium and its nearby airport. Meyssan also points to emerging evidence that would implicate Erdogan in the Paris massacre of last November 13.
According to Meyssan, the chain of events leading to these tragic events goes back to 2011, when the French Foreign Minister Alain Jupp(C) entered into a secret accord with then Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu for the purpose of carving a new and artificial state, out of northern Syria. This meeting occurred during the first year of the Syrian war, when Erdogan and Davutoglu were still counting on an early disintegration of the government of President Assad.
The new artificial state was to be called ''Kurdistan,'' but it was to be located on Syrian territory stolen from that country. To populate this new state, the Turkish government was preparing an enormous campaign of ethnic cleansing, deportations, and expulsions designed to expel virtually all Kurds from its territory. The original agreement reached in the talks between Jupp(C) and Davutoglu was reportedly confirmed at a subsequent higher-level conference with the participation of French President Hollande, the then Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan, and a renegade Kurdish leader '' specifically Salih Muslim Muhammad, co-chairman of the Democratic Union Party, a political formation among the Syrian Kurds.
One of the groups most disadvantaged by this arrangement was the Syrian Kurds, but they were able to fight back by defeating the ISIS terrorists during the siege of Kobane, a Syrian Kurdish town on the Turkish border. The during late 2014 and early 2015, the Kobane Kurds, with some US air support, administered one of the first defeats which the ISIS butchers had experienced. Because the YPG Kurds have proven effective, the US decided to back them as a proxy against ISIS. France, seeing the new US attitude, decided to delay the implementation of the earlier ''Kurdistan'' plan, and maintain alignment with Washington.
It is now clear to many observers that the November 13, 2015 Paris massacres represented the response of the Erdogan clique to these developments. Erdogan had originally intended to use the Paris massacres as a pretext for scapegoating the Kurds and beginning their expulsion from Turkish territory. But, starting in October 2015, and with the deployment of the Russian Air Force to Syrian bases, Erdogan once again was forced to delay his ''Kurdistan'' scenario. Almost as soon as the Russian planes arrived, the Turkish MIT secret intelligence agency was widely blamed for the destruction of a Russian commercial airliner over the Sinai district of Egypt. Then there was the Turkish downing of a Russian Sukhoi jet fighter. Erdogan was unable to see the initiative.
Now, during March 2016, Russian President Putin has announced the beginning of a gradual drawdown of Russian forces in Syria. But at the same time, there is an understanding between Obama's White House and Putin's Kremlin that everyone must be ousted as the president of Turkey.
Meyssan confirmed last week's reports that Russian and US weapons are now flowing into the hands of the YPG Syrian Kurds, the victors of Kobane and other recent actions. Some of these weapons are being passed on by the YPG into the hands of the PKK, a Kurdish group, which operates inside Turkey, and which Ankara insists on defining as terrorist.
In the meantime, Erdogan's blackmail of the European Union over the issue of refugees fleeing from the Syrian war zone has proven successful in the form of an EU commitment to pay '‚¬3 billion per year to Erdogan. The money is allegedly to be used to defray the expenses of housing large numbers of Syrian refugees in Anatolia, but it is an open secret that this money will be used by Erdogan to finance the continuation of ISIS operations in Iraq and Syria.
Terrorist attacks took place inside Turkey, on March 13 in Ankara and on March 19 in Istanbul.
March 18, if the Turkish President delivered a special address for the 101st anniversary of the Anglo-French operation against Gallipoli during World War I. Here Erdogan made a public show of indignation about a recent demonstration by pro-Kurdish groups in Brussels, Belgium, during last week's EU-Turkish refugee summit there, an action which sought to focus public attention on Turkish human rights abuses.
Accusing the European Union, and especially Belgium of supporting the PKK, Erdogan claimed that the EU and Belgium were themselves terrorists
''There is no reason why the bomb that exploded in Ankara cannot explode in Brussels, in any other European city,'' raved Erdogan; ''The snakes you are sleeping with can bite you any time.''
Note that this represented a direct threat of terrorist violence against Brussels and Belgium just four days before the actual Brussels bombing. On this basis alone, Erdogan would have to be considered the prime suspect.
The during the days after the Brussels terror bombing, Turkish newspapers controlled by the Erdogan faction is celebrated what they called the ''punishment'' of Belgium up by the very terror groups, which had been harbored there.
European leaders remain willfully blind to the real activities of Erdogan and his supporters. The Turkish President is reported to regard the Turks as a master race destined to rule the world. That is his idea of the Caliphate.
Western police and intelligence agencies need to direct special scrutiny towards the Mill® G¶r¼s (National Vision) organization, which is especially active among the Turkish diaspora. Erdogan is thought to direct many of the activities of this group.
Erdogan also controls Hizb ut Tahrir (Party of Liberation), an international Pan-Islamist group dedicated to the reconstitution of the Caliphate under Sharia Law and the subsequent conquest of the entire world.
These groups, together with the Moslem Brotherhood (Ikhwan) itself can all be mobilized by Erdogan as a terrorist trifecta for his projects of jihad, intimidation, and aggression.
In another disturbing development, the Turkish dictator is identifying himself more and more with figures from the history of Central Asia like Attila the Hun and Genghis Khan.
F-Russia
'De dekmantel van Geen Peil' - FTM
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 14:08
Wie de democratie hoog heeft zitten, en het oneens is met een handelsverdrag, moet het niet zoeken in een referendum, aldus economen Fred Pallada en Rob R¼hl. Ook zien zij vooral voordelen van het verdrag met Oekra¯ne.
Onder het motto 'Red de Democratie' roepen de initiatiefnemers van GeenPeil de burgers op om in verweer te komen tegen een te grote Brusselse bemoeienis met de nationale democratie. Voorts vragen zij zich af: hoe ver mag het kiezersmandaat in Den Haag en Brussel gaan? Een interessante vraag. Maar wat wordt precies bedoeld met een te grote bemoeienis en waar moet de reikwijdte van het kiezersmandaat eindigen? Antwoorden blijven vooralsnog uit, maar er komt wel een referendum op 6 april van dit jaar, waarvoor het associatieverdrag met Oekra¯ne als dekmantel dient. Achterliggende motieven zijn de angst dat de deur tot lidmaatschap van de EU wordt opengezet en de kans op een confrontatie met Rusland toeneemt.
Is het akkoord een feit, dan heeft de Europese regelgeving in alle lidstaten voorrang boven de nationale regelgeving
De feiten zijn dat de EU in het verleden met tal van landen associatieverdragen heeft afgesloten. Doel van zo'n verdrag is dat in het betreffende land hervormingen tot stand komen op politiek, economisch en juridisch gebied, die zijn georinteerd op het Europese stelsel van waarden (Acquis communautaire). In de EU ligt het initiatief voor deze verdragen bij de Europese Commissie, die ook toezicht houdt op de naleving ervan. Het Europese Parlement beoordeelt de voorgenomen regelgeving en kan wijzigingen voorstellen. De uiteindelijke beslissing over wet- en regelgeving ligt bij het Europese Parlement en de Raad van Ministers. Besluiten over associatieverdragen worden bij meerderheid aangenomen. Als een overeenkomst is bereikt, mag het Europees Parlement die goedkeuren of afkeuren, maar niet meer wijzigen. Is het akkoord een feit, dan heeft de Europese regelgeving in alle lidstaten voorrang boven de nationale regelgeving.
Aan de onderhandelingen over een associatieverdrag gaat een voorbereidingstijd vooraf die eerder in maanden dan in weken wordt geteld. De onderhandelingen zelf duren vaak jaren. Zo is het associatieverdrag met Oekra¯ne voor het eerst in 2012 aan de orde gesteld, maar daarvoor waren al verkennende gesprekken gevoerd.
Wie durft te beweren dat hij of zij inzicht heeft in een associatieverdrag en een goede afweging kan maken van de argumenten voor en tegen? Velen stellen hun vertrouwen in politieke leidslieden. Zij worden geacht het speelveld te overzien en invloed uit te oefenen waar dat mogelijk en nodig is. De burger staat wat dat betreft op afstand en laat zich, gesteund door de opinirende journalistiek, via het politieke debat dat in partijen en in de media wordt gevoerd, leiden. Dit is in de kern de vertegenwoordigende democratie die in de lidstaten afzonderlijk en in de EU als geheel de norm is. Ingezetenen van de EU hebben via democratische procedures hun politieke leidslieden in deze organen gekozen.
De besluitvorming in Brussel is uiteindelijk een kwestie van compromissen, zoals dat ook in Den Haag het geval is. Een directere vorm van democratie zou te verkiezen zijn, maar zelfs de contouren van een alternatief worden door de initiatiefnemers van het referendum niet geschetst. In plaats daarvan mag de kiezer nu zeggen wat hij vindt van een associatieverdrag dat inmiddels door de Parlementen van alle lidstaten is goedgekeurd.
"De kiezer mag nu zeggen wat hij vindt van een associatieverdrag dat inmiddels door de Parlementen van alle lidstaten is goedgekeurd"
Een feit echter is dat het referendum in het Europese politieke bestel geen structureel instrument is om de burger bij de besluitvorming te betrekken. Het resultaat dat er nu mee wordt beoogd, is een afwijzing van het associatieverdrag. Zo niet, dan is die volksraadpleging overbodig. Een 'nee' versterkt de democratie in de EU echter niet. Daarom is het referendum in zeker opzicht tendentieus, in een ander opzicht contraproductief, schadelijk voor Oekra¯ne en voor de burger nogal verwarrend als geheel.
Economische betekenisAls voorbeeld van de economische betekenis van een associatieverdrag kunnen de landen in Centraal- en Oost-Europa dienen die inmiddels lid zijn geworden van de Europese Unie. In een uit 2014 daterende studie van ING Valuing a close connection is aangetoond dat zowel de landen in Centraal- en Oost-Europa als die in West-Europa hebben geprofiteerd van het aangaan van nauwere banden. Tussen 1995 en 2008 kwamen er in West-Europa 2,7 miljoen banen bij als gevolg van de gestegen vraag uit de landen in Centraal- en Oost-Europa plus Rusland. Omgekeerd zorgde West-Europa in die periode als gevolg van een gestegen vraag voor 1 miljoen extra banen in Centraal- en Oost-Europa.
Dit proces kende verschillende fasen. Eerst is de EG in 1989 begonnen met het Phare-programma voor technische en financile ondersteuning van politieke, economische en sociale hervormingen in Polen en Hongarije. Later is dit uitgebreid tot andere landen in de regio. Twee jaar later sloot de EG met Polen en Hongarije de eerste zogenaamde Europa-akkoorden (te vergelijken met associatieakkoorden), die het juridisch kader voor de bilaterale betrekkingen tussen de EG en de landen moest regelen. Vervolgens zijn handelstarieven verlaagd en (met steun van diverse landen, de Europese Investeringsbank, de Oost-Europabank en de Wereldbank) financieringsprogramma's opgetuigd om de landen te helpen hun economien te hervormen. Deze aanpak heeft een positieve invloed gehad op hun welvaartsontwikkeling.
Grafiek 1 laat de zeer gunstige ontwikkeling van het inkomen per hoofd vanaf 1995 zien in bijvoorbeeld Polen en Tsjechi. In de periode 1995-2015 steeg het inkomen per hoofd in Tsjechi in US dollar gemeten met $ 11.500 tot $ 17.300. In Polen lag die inkomensstijging met $ 8.800 tot $ 12.450 wat lager. In Oekra¯ne zijn de inkomens in die 20 jaar slechts met $ 1.400 gestegen tot $ 2115. De sterk gestegen orintatie van de handel van Polen, Hongarije, Tsjechi en Slowakije in die periode op de EU-15 heeft hieraan ongetwijfeld een positieve bijdrage geleverd (Grafiek 2A+B). De Oekra¯ense export bleef in dezelfde periode echter in sterke mate op Rusland en de andere GOS-staten gericht (Grafiek 3A+B).
De vrijhandelsgedachteEr hoeft niet aan getwijfeld te worden dat de verlaging van de handelstarieven tussen de EU en Oekra¯ne een gunstig effect zal hebben voor beide partijen. De directe invloed zal niet voor alle lidstaten van de EU in dezelfde mate optreden, omdat er verschillen zijn in de intensiteit van de handelsstromen, maar dankzij indirecte effecten zullen alle lidstaten profiteren. De programma's waarmee in 1989 al werd begonnen om de juridische kaders in te richten hebben bijgedragen aan de verbetering aan de rechtszekerheid voor bewoners, maar ook voor ondernemers. Het ondernemersklimaat werd daarmee in de landen van Centraal- en Oost- Europa verbeterd.
In 5 jaar tijd heeft Polen ons ingehaald
In de ranglijst van de Wereldbank die eind 2015 werd gepubliceerd (Ease of doing Business 2016), wordt van 189 landen vergeleken hoe gemakkelijk het is om er zaken te doen. In die rangljst staat Polen inmiddels op plek 25, ruim boven Nederland (28). In 5 jaar tijd heeft Polen ons ingehaald! Oekra¯ne staat op die ranglijst op plek 83. Meer aansluiting van Oekra¯ne bij de EU door verlaging van de handelstarieven en ondersteuning bij het verbeteren van het ondernemersklimaat biedt het land kans op meer welvaart voor de Oekra¯ners. Een groeiende welvaart in Oekra¯ne zal dan ook naar verwachting voor de Nederlandse handel gunstig uitpakken.
Die verwachting wordt ondersteund door de volgende feiten. Het associatieverdrag past binnen de vrijhandelsgedachte van de EU, waar participatie wordt geprefereerd boven uitsluiting. Het doel van samenwerking op economisch gebied is de bevordering van de vrijhandel tussen de EU en Oekra¯ne, het stimuleren van investeringen en de verbetering van de instituties die de handel faciliteren.
Een groeiende welvaart in Oekra¯ne zal naar verwachting voor de Nederlandse handel gunstig uitpakken
Vrijhandel is voor Europa van essentieel belang omdat het afhankelijk is van toelevering van grondstoffen, halffabricaten en onderdelen enerzijds en van afzetgebied anderzijds. Lagere tarieven werken kostenbesparend en export bevorderend. Handelsverdragen scheppen nieuwe mogelijkheden, terwijl open markten economische groei en werkgelegenheid creren, zowel in de EU als bij de handelspartners.
De handel bevordert nieuwe investeringsstromen die weer ideen en innovaties verspreiden en kansen scheppen voor productiviteitsgroei en meer keuze voor de consument. Met de investeringen zijn niet alleen de kapitaalstromen gemoeid, maar ook de rechtszekerheid en een voorspelbaar stabiel handelsklimaat. Bij de associatieverdragen wordt ook gelet op het openstellen van de markt voor buitenlandse bedrijven bij overheidsopdrachten en bij de acquisitie van opdrachten voor infrastructurele werken.
Verder is een belangrijk aspect van het handelsbeleid het verbeteren van instituties die voor een goede marktwerking noodzakelijk zijn. Men moet hierbij denken aan de bescherming van intellectuele eigendomsrechten, zoals patenten, auteursrechten en merken. Ook vergunningen en normen voor de gezondheid van mens en dier en gewasbescherming zijn van belang. Voor een duurzame ontwikkeling van de economie zijn goed bestuur, respect voor de rechtsstaat en mensenrechten onmisbaar. Voorts is er aandacht voor het bestrijden van onethische handelspraktijken, zoals corruptie.
VeiligheidsaspectenOok veiligheidsaspecten spelen een rol. Wat te denken over de bezorgdheid dat het associatieverdrag met Oekra¯ne kan leiden tot een provocatie van Rusland. De feiten die hierbij in het oog gehouden moeten worden zijn:
Oekra¯ne is een soeverein land;Het aangaan van een associatie met de EU lijkt al stilzwijgend door Moskou te zijn aanvaard;Uitbreiding van de handelsrelaties tot een officieel EU-lidmaatschap is thans niet opportuun en ook niet gewenst gezien de lange weg die Oekra¯ne nog heeft te gaan. De ervaring heeft geleerd dat er te vaak landen tot de EU zijn toegetreden die nog onvoldoende waren gevorderd met hun convergentieproces;Een associatieverdrag biedt een goed alternatief voor EU-lidmaatschap en uitzicht op welvaartsverbetering zoals andere Oost-Europese landen inmiddels hebben ervaren;De verplichting om zich te committeren aan het acquis communautair kan worden opgevat als de wil van Oekra¯ne om te handelen naar de kernwaarden van de EU.De NAVOEen feit van een geheel andere orde is dat het niet de orintatie op de EU is waar Rusland mee in de maag zit, maar de belangstelling die Kiev heeft getoond voor de NAVO. Opgemerkt kan worden dat die belangstelling al teruggaat tot de tijd dat het Sovjet imperium uiteen viel. Reeds in 1994 opteerde het land voor het Partnership for Peace Program van de NAVO. En in 2008 verzocht Oekra¯ne toegelaten te worden tot het Membership Action Plan van de verdragsorganisatie. In Moskou leidde dit toen tot grote verontwaardiging. Echter, in 2010 sprak het Parlement van Oekra¯ne uit dat toetreding tot de NAVO niet in het belang was van het nationale veiligheidsbeleid. Maar de Russische interventie in Oekra¯ne in oktober 2014 bracht daar verandering in. Na de annexatie van de Krim is het Parlement tot het inzicht gekomen dat het gevoerde beleid niet bestand is gebleken tegen agressie van buiten af.
Dat Rusland bezwaren heeft tegen een toenemende invloed van de NAVO in het oosten van Europa, verbaast niet. Het standpunt van de verdragsorganisatie is echter dat toetreding in de eerste plaats afhankelijk is van de vraag of een aspirant-lid voldoet aan de criteria die daarvoor gelden. Een associatieverdrag met de EU is geen criterium. Anders gezegd, het associatieverdrag en het beleid ten aanzien van de veiligheid aan de buitengrenzen van Oekra¯ne bevinden zich in verschillende registers.
LapmiddelEen Nederlandse volksraadpleging om het verdrag te blokkeren onder het motto 'red de democratie' is een lapmiddel
Het associatieverdrag met Oekra¯ne is qua procedure op gelijke wijze tot stand gekomen als de verdragen die de EU eerder heeft gesloten met tal van andere landen. Qua inhoud worden de overeenkomsten, zo mogelijk, op maat gesneden om de specifieke belangen van de betrokkenen partijen te kunnen wikken en wegen. Een Nederlandse volksraadpleging om het verdrag te blokkeren onder het motto 'red de democratie' is een lapmiddel. Afwijzing van het verdrag zal het beoogde doel van meer democratie in de EU niet dichterbij brengen en worden gezien als een onheus gebaar naar Oekra¯ne, dat part noch deel heeft gehad aan de manier waarop in de Europa het democratisch proces gestalte heeft gekregen. Dat proces is misschien verre van ideaal, maar het functioneert en de vraag hoe het kan worden versterkt, is legitiem.
Wie door democratie gedreven beweegredenen heeft, moet het niet over de boeg gooien van een referendum over een handelsverdrag. Het hoge spel dat in Engeland wordt gespeeld, met een Brexit als inzet, getuigt van een meer principile houding. Het geeft precies de essentie aan van democratie, namelijk de mogelijkheid van het electoraat, dat als het er op aan komt, zich op geweldloze manier van de machtshebbers kan ontdoen.
Over de auteurs
Fred Pallada en Rob R¼hl zijn beide econoom. Fred Pallada was tot 2010 senior research executive bij het Economisch Bureau van ING. Rob R¼hl is oprichter van Next Markets Advisory, dat bedrijven uit de Benelux adviseert over het betreden van opkomende markten in onder andere Polen, Turkije en India. Zij schreven deze gastbijdrage als een reactie op het initiatief van GeenPeil om een referendum te houden over het associatieverdrag van de EU met Oekra¯ne.
Lees verderDit artikel krijg je cadeau van Follow the Money.Diepgravende onderzoeksjournalistiek kost tijd en geld. Steun ons enword lid
Kerry Balks at Supplying MH-17 Data
Sat, 26 Mar 2016 16:06
Exclusive: The father of a young American killed aboard Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in 2014 says Secretary of State Kerry balks at turning over U.S. data that Kerry cited three days after the tragedy in eastern Ukraine, writes Robert Parry.
By Robert Parry
Secretary of State John Kerry has rebuffed a request from the father of the only American citizen killed aboard Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 for Kerry to disclose the radar and other data that he cited in 2014 in claiming to know the precise location of the missile launch that allegedly downed the airliner over eastern Ukraine killing 298 people.
In a letter to Kerry dated Jan. 5, 2016, Thomas Schansman, the father of American-Dutch citizen Quinn Schansman, asked Kerry to turn over that data to aid the investigation seeking to identify who was responsible for shooting down the plane on July 17, 2014. In a letter dated March 7, 2016, but just delivered to Thomas Schansman on Thursday, Kerry expressed his condolences and repeated his claim to know where the missile launch originated, but did not provide new details.
Quinn Schansman, a dual U.S.-Dutch citizen killed aboard Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 on July 17, 2014. (Photo from Facebook)
Kerry wrote, ''The assessment I provided to the media three days following the shoot down remains unchanged, and is corroborated by the findings of the Dutch Safety Board [DSB]. Flight 17 was shot down by a BUK surface-to-air missile fired from separatist-controlled territory in eastern Ukraine.''
But Kerry's assertion is not entirely correct. Despite Kerry's claim on July 20, 2014 '' three days after the shoot-down '' to know the location of the missile launch, the Dutch Safety Board reported last October that it could only place the likely launch site within a 320-square-kilometer area that included territory under both government and rebel control. (The safety board did not seek to identify which side fired the fateful missile.)
Why the U.S. government has dragged its heels about supplying the evidence that Kerry claimed to possess just days after the tragedy has become a secondary mystery to the allegations and counter-allegations about whodunit. That Kerry would not even elaborate on that information in response to the father of the lone American victim is even more striking.
In an email to me with Kerry's letter attached, Thomas Schansman wrote, ''the message is clear: no answer on my request to hand over satellite and/or radar data to DSB or public.''
Plus, Kerry's credibility has come under a darkening cloud because of recent disclosures undermining his repeated claims on Aug. 30, 2013, that ''we know'' that Syrian government forces were responsible for the Aug. 21, 2013 sarin gas attack outside Damascus. Despite Kerry's assertions of certainty in that case, he presented no verifiable evidence and it has since been confirmed that the U.S. intelligence community lacked ''slam dunk'' proof.
Nearly a year after his ''we know'' performance regarding the Syria-sarin case, Kerry staged a reprise expressing similar certainty about the MH-17 case '' again dumping the blame on the target of an intensive U.S. propaganda campaign, this time Russia, which was backing the rebels in eastern Ukraine. Kerry again failed to supply supporting evidence (beyond some dubious references to ''social media'').
Cracks in the Story
Also, some of Kerry's MH-17 assertions have shown cracks as more information has become available. For instance, despite Kerry's putting the blame on the ethnic Russian rebels and their supporters in Moscow, Western intelligence now says the only functioning Buk anti-aircraft missiles in the area were under the control of the Ukrainian military.
According to Dutch intelligence '' and implicitly corroborated by U.S. intelligence '' Ukraine's Buk batteries were the only anti-aircraft missiles in the area capable of hitting a commercial airliner flying at 33,000 feet. That information was contained in a little-noticed Dutch intelligence report last October citing information from the Netherlands' Military Intelligence and Security Service (MIVD).
MIVD made its assessment in the context of explaining why commercial aircraft continued to fly over the eastern Ukrainian battle zone in summer 2014. MIVD said that based on ''state secret'' information, it was known that Ukraine possessed some older but ''powerful anti-aircraft systems'' and ''a number of these systems were located in the eastern part of the country.''
MIVD added that the rebels lacked that capacity, having only short-range anti-aircraft missiles and a few inoperable Buk missiles that had been captured from a Ukrainian military base. ''During the course of July, several reliable sources indicated that the systems that were at the military base were not operational,'' MIVD said. ''Therefore, they could not be used by the Separatists.''
U.S. intelligence, which had eastern Ukraine under intensive overhead surveillance in summer 2014, implicitly corroborated MIVD's conclusion in a U.S. ''Government Assessment'' released by the Director of National Intelligence on July 22, 2014. It listed weapons systems that Russia had provided the rebels but made no mention of a Buk missile battery.
In other words, based on satellite imagery and other intelligence reviewed both before and after the shoot-down, U.S. and other Western intelligence services could find no proof that Russia had ever given a Buk system to the rebels or introduced one into the area. If Russia had provided a Buk battery '' four 16-foot-long missiles hauled around by trucks '' it would have been hard to miss.
There was also logic to support the notion that a Ukrainian team may have been responsible for the MH-17 shoot-down. At the time, the Ukrainian military was mounting an offensive against the rebels, who had resisted a U.S.-backed coup on Feb. 22, 2014, which ousted elected President Viktor Yanukovych, who had strong support among Ukraine's ethnic Russian minority in the east.
As the Ukrainian offensive claimed territory that the rebels had held, the Ukrainian military moved several Buk anti-aircraft missile batteries toward the front, presumably out of concern that Russia might directly intervene to save the rebels from annihilation.
Plus, on July 16, 2014, a Ukrainian warplane was shot down apparently by an air-to-air missile believed fired by a Russian jet, giving reason for the Ukrainian anti-aircraft batteries to be on edge the next day, looking for Russian aircraft intruding into Ukraine's airspace.
(Another possible scenario, reportedly examined by U.S. intelligence analysts, was that a rogue Ukrainian team working with a hardline oligarch hoped to shoot down Russian President Vladimir Putin's plane returning from a South American trip at about the same time and with similar markings as MH-17.)
But the evidence '' that the only operational Buk batteries were under control of the Ukrainian military '' did not fit the U.S. propaganda needs of blaming Russia and the rebels. Any indication that the post-coup Ukrainian government was responsible would instead put the U.S.-backed Kiev regime in a negative light.
So, it makes sense in a ''strategic communications'' kind of way for Kerry and other U.S. officials to leave the conventional wisdom '' blaming Putin and Russia for the 298 deaths '' in place for as long as possible. Kerry told Thomas Schansman that he and the other families of victims should expect a long wait before the perpetrators are brought to justice.
Expressing Condolences
In the letter to Thomas Schansman, Secretary Kerry wrote, ''As a father myself, I can only begin to imagine the pain and loss you have endured with your son's tragic passing. My heart goes out to you and your family.''
Secretary of State John Kerry denounces Russia's RT network as a ''propaganda bullhorn'' during remarks on April 24, 2014.
Kerry then added, ''This investigative work is not easy, and bringing those responsible to justice will not be a quick process. However, Quinn, your family, and the families of all the others who died that day deserve such justice, and we will continue to do everything possible to achieve it.''
But the ''everything'' doesn't apparently include releasing the data that Kerry claimed to have just days after the crash.
On July 20, 2014, Kerry appeared on NBC's ''Meet the Press'' and declared, ''we picked up the imagery of this launch. We know the trajectory. We know where it came from. We know the timing. And it was exactly at the time that this aircraft disappeared from the radar.''
In the letter asking Kerry to release that data, Thomas Schansman noted Kerry's similar comments to a news conference on Aug. 12, 2014, when the Secretary of State said about the Buk anti-aircraft missile suspected of downing the plane: ''We saw the take-off. We saw the trajectory. We saw the hit. We saw this aeroplane disappear from the radar screens. So there is really no mystery about where it came from and where these weapons have come from.''
Yet where the missile launch occurred has remained a point of mystery to the Dutch-led investigation. Last October, the Dutch Safety Board put the missile launch in a 320-square-kilometer area. Almaz-Antey, the Russian arms manufacturer of the Buk systems, conducted its own experiments to determine the likely firing location and placed it in a much smaller area near the village of Zaroshchenskoye, about 20 kilometers west of the DSB's zone and in an area under Ukrainian government control.
Earlier this month, Fred Westerbeke, the head of the Dutch-led Joint Investigation Team, told the families of the victims that the inquiry had yet to pin down the missile launch site, saying ''In the second half of the year we expect exact results.'' In other words, on the second anniversary of the shoot-down, the investigators looking into the MH-17 tragedy still might not know what Kerry claimed to know three days afterwards.
[For more on this topic, see Consortiumnews.com's ''Flight 17 Shoot-Down Scenario Shifts''; ''The Danger of an MH-17 Cold Case''; and ''The Ever-Curiouser MH-17 Case.'']
Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America's Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com.
CYBER!
Wickr Challenges Bloomberg's Domination of Wall Street Messaging - MoneyBeat - WSJ
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 05:01
Silicon Valley is gunning for Bloomberg LP's dominance on messaging in the financial world.
One of the more innovative and perhaps eccentric entrants into the race is Wickr Inc., a San Francisco-based firm that initially planned to focus on growing its ultra-secure, self-destructing messaging service among everyday consumers.
The service is similar to Snapchat, but uses more advanced encryption.
During conversations with banks, exchanges and hedge funds, Wickr's executives realized that there is arguably greatest demand for secure communications in the financial world than among consumers.
''Financial services was originally part of my three year plan for expansion and it just got accelerated to immediately,'' said Nico Sell, the CEO of Wickr. ''The entire industry is feeling the pain. The threat [from computer hackers] has reached a new level.''
Wickr declined to name which banks it was working with on messaging systems.
Ms. Sell is a major proponent of information security, going so far as refusing to be photographed or recorded without sunglasses to reduce her digital footprint and avoid identity theft. A long-time security expert and organizer of Defcon, the annual hacker convention, Ms. Sell does not maintain a Facebook account or other social-media accounts to protect her identity.
Wickr is gaining traction. It raised $30 million in June from a group of investors that included CME Group, the futures exchange operator based in Chicago. Other investors include Jim Breyer, one of the first backers of Facebook, and Richard Clarke, a former adviser to the White House on terrorism and cyber-security.
Ms. Sell said the Wickr system was at its core a highly secure protocol for exchanging information, whether the data is financial transactions, chat messages or other types.
The self-destructing feature used in the Wickr app for phones could also be used in the financial world, except with a much longer fuse. Messages or data could be programmed to delete itself after a number of years so the firm wouldn't have to manually remove it from data centers. That would save the firm costs and also reduce the risk of huge amounts of data being accessed by hackers.
''We keep tons of data around and that becomes hazardous waste,'' she said.
Markit Ltd., a financial data firm that operates a chat network that lets members send messages to each other regardless of the technology they use, is in discussions with Wickr about using its encryption technology for an offering, too,according to a Markit spokesman.
Wickr's encryption system was designed by Robert Statica, the firm's co-founder and chief technology officer who teaches computer forensics and cyber security at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Other executives include Andy Caspersen, former chief security and privacy officer at Schwab.
WICKR-These Apps Promise to Encrypt Your Smartphone Communications - The New York Times
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 04:56
THE topic of smartphone security and secure communication is front and center these days, thanks to the battle between Apple and the F.B.I. over opening up an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino, Calif., mass attackers.
The case has raised questions about what means people might have to protect their mobile data, shining the spotlight on the many apps that promise secure emailing, messaging and more.
Signal, one of the best known private messaging apps, is free on iOS and Android. Its makers promote it with the slogan ''privacy is possible,'' and it uses end-to-end encryption, ensuring that only the recipient of the communications can read them. Its encryption and privacy protections are highly rated by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights group.
PhotoSignal is one of the best-known private messaging apps.Signal's users can send secure messages and make Internet voice calls with their existing phone number, and there's no need to set up an account. The app is straightforward to use, with large icons and controls and large, easy-to-read text.
To talk, both parties must have Signal installed. And for an extra level of protection, which takes a little getting used to, both parties are shown a random pair of words that allows them to double-check that the other user is the right person. The technique brings spy movies to mind, but it's a strong reminder that you are taking part in a secure call.
Threema delivers a similar service with a few more features. It also has end-to-end encryption, which is applied to all communication including text messages and files and images sent via the service. There's no voice call capability, but users can send voice messages. Both sender and recipient must have Threema installed.
Additionally, Threema allows users to hold group chats and to pose a question as a poll to group members. There's no need to open an account to use the app, because each user is assigned a random ID that isn't necessarily connected to an email address or phone number.
There's more to learn within Threema in terms of controls and menus, but they're relatively easy to master. The app is available on iOS, Android and Windows Phone, and costs $3 ($2 on Windows).
Wickr Me, which is free on iOS and Android, is something of a celebrity in this class of apps because it was featured in an Iggy Azalea music video. It also has fun touches, including the ability to add stickers, graffiti and filters to photos.
But at its heart, Wickr Me is a secure messaging app. Users can set an expiration time for messages, and it offers encryption for voice, text and video messages. A ''shredder'' function promises to securely erase all deleted messages and media from your device. Wickr Me also allows for anonymous use, so not even Wickr's makers know who its users are.
PhotoWickr Me offers encryption for voice, text and video messages.For a more traditional secure email app, check out ProtonMail. Free on iOS and Android, ProtonMail looks like a typical email app '-- except that all emails sent and received through it are encrypted. When you sign up for a free account, it's emphasized that if you forget your passwords, there's no way you can retrieve your emails.
The app's single purpose of delivering secure emails means ProtonMail is not the fanciest app in the world, but it's easy to use. The app works best when the sender and receiver both have ProtonMail, but there is a way to send encrypted messages from inside the app to more standard email addresses.
PhotoDespite its high security levels, ProtonMail looks like any other email app.All of these apps help augment the encryption that may already be built into your device. (It's worth checking through your phone's settings to familiarize yourself with its privacy and security features.)
Some secure messaging apps may be misused, which is why many of them ask upon sign-up that you won't use them for illegal purposes. And remember '-- there's no such thing as perfect security, particularly if you lose your phone.
Quick CallCola is a new messaging app (not one that promotes itself for its encryption) with the aim of simplifying the business of sending texts. As well as traditional message chats, Cola has ''bubbles'' that give people access to extras like polls, a friend locator and a neat ''When can we meet?'' system for quickly arranging group meet-ups. It's fun to use and free on iOS, but is available only in the United States for now.
A version of this article appears in print on March 24, 2016, on page B7 of the New York edition with the headline: Encryption by App Adds Security to Smartphones.
Continue reading the main story
Apple Crack
Is it possible Apple sold out?-JustOneMinute: Apple And The FBI - WTF Is It Now?
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 00:09
So after months of preparing for a courtroom showdown the FBI says "Nevermind, for now anyway"?
Yesterday, it came to light that the FBI may no longer need Apple to unlock the San Bernardino iPhone. The two sides were due to meet in court again today, but the hearing has been delayed.
The news that the FBI may not need Apple's help saw the courts quickly grant a two-week pause while the government tries out a new approach. It claims that it's been presented with alternative means of unlocking the phone by a third party, which could be used to break into the now infamous iPhone. It's not clear who has provided the FBI with the alternative, or what it entails.
As to the technology side, some guesswork here. I like the Apple on the edge of Tomorrow death/rebirth approach myself:
What's stopping the FBI from trying to guess each and every PIN combination until it gets the right one is the fact that the iPhone might be set to erase the data after the tenth wrong PIN input. Edward Snowden already suggested that the FBI has a memory mirroring technique at its disposal that could be used to beat the system.
What happens here is that the iPhone is again dismantled and the NAND memory module is removed so that it can be copied. With the help of software, the FBI can then try each and every PIN combination available. If the phone erases itself after the tenth attempt, the FBI would just restart the process. After all, it still has the original memory that can be copied over and over.
''This technique is kind of like cheating at Super Mario Bros. with a save-game, allowing you to play the same level over and over after you keep dying,'' security researcher Jonathan Zdziarski wrote on his blog '' you should read the entire post to better understand how this technique works.
But as to timing, well, hmm. I have long said that Apple ought to be protesting publicly while cooperating privately, to protect their brand while getting this resolved. I am not getting off that horse now. My guess? Apple brought in a consultant, made a few "suggestions" as to how to crack this, and sent the cut-out on to the FBI.
No adverse court ruling, no awkwardness about ignoring court orders in the event they lose, no publicity about publicly cooperating with the FBI. OK, there is some negative press about seemingly secure iphones being hackable, but they can claim the next generation solves that, so hurry out to the Apple Store and upgrade.
Or, the FBI got lucky. Maybe time will tell.
Mixed prospects for encryption bills on Capitol Hill
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 01:36
Congress
Mixed prospects for encryption bills on Capitol HillBy Aisha ChowdhryMar 25, 2016At least one high-profile encryption bill being discussed on Capitol Hill looks unlikely to move through the legislative process this year, a Senate staffer told the Information Security and Privacy Advisory Board, a group of private-sector technology experts which advises the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
Matt Grote, a senior professional staffer for Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and a former Government Accountability Office analyst, discussed the legislative outlook encryption-related bills during a March 25 presentation at the ISPAB meeting in Washington D.C.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Vice Chairman Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) have drafted legislation designed to give law enforcement access to encrypted communications with a warrant. That measure, which the senators plan to formally introduce soon, would presumably be ex post facto to the Apple-FBI encryption dispute, but could add a legislative framework for future, similar cases.
Grote did not get into the merits of the legislation, but simply stressed to the board that getting even mildly controversial legislation through Congress this year will be difficult, given the elections and the compressed political calendar.
"Nobody knows what they are going to do," he said of Burr and Feinstein's legislative strategy, but "I think it's going to be a really heavy lift this year." He speculated that the senators might use a closed markup as a means to move the bill closer to a floor vote, and noted that regardless of where it ends up, the bill "does give them the benefit of starting a discussion."
Grote said another measure -- this one from House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-Texas) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), a member of the Senate's Select Committee on Intelligence -- might have a better chance of progressing. That bill calls for the creation of a commission of experts in technology, cryptography, law enforcement, intelligence, privacy, global commerce and national security. Grote noted that Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), who chairs the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, supports the bill
Additionally, he pointed to a recently formed bipartisan working group at House Judiciary Committee and the Energy and Commerce Committee designed to focus on legislative issues around encryption. Their goal is to meet with stakeholders and subject matter experts regularly in an attempt to come up with solutions by the end of this year and propose recommendations for possible policy solutions to striking the balance between privacy and the tools law enforcement needs during their investigations.
About the Author
Aisha Chowdhry is a staff writer covering Congress, the State Department, the Department of Veteran Affairs and the Department of Homeland Security.
Prior to joining FCW, Chowdhry covered foreign policy for CQ Roll Call. Her overseas work prior to that took her to Pakistan and Afghanistan. She has worked as a correspondent for Reuters based out of Islamabad. Chowdhry has also worked at the CBS affiliate in Washington as a multimedia journalist. She began her career as a freelance reporter for USA Today and covered stories from conflict zones. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Foreign Policy, and Voice of America, among others.
Chowdhry received her masters in broadcast journalism from American University in Washington, D.C.
Click here for previous articles by Chowdhry, or connect with her on Twitter: @aishach
Shut Up Slave!
Liberal Connecticut May Raid Yale's Endowment For Much-Needed Cash | Viewpoints of a Sagitarrian
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 13:59
Progressives taking spread the wealth to a whole new level.
The Libertarian Republic by Blake Neff
Connecticut's cash-starved government is considering raiding the endowment of Yale University in an attempt to plug a growing budget hole.
A bill introduced to the Connecticut Senate would tax the annual gains of any college endowment valued at over $10 billion. The high threshold effectively singles out Yale, as no other schools in Connecticut even come close to having an endowment that large. Yale's endowment of about $26 billion is the second largest in the country, behind only Harvard University's gargantuan $38 billion nest egg.
If passed, the bill would be the first law of its kind at either the state or federal level.
Yale would be able to avoid the tax hit, but only if it dedicated all of its endowment gains to its educational mission rather than reinvesting its gains back into the endowment.
Connecticut needs money because of a rapidly-growing hole in the state's budget that lawmakers are desperate to fill. The state has a current budget shortfall of $266 million['...]
Continue Reading '-- Liberal Connecticut May Raid Yale's Endowment For Much-Needed Cash
Besides, Yale's chickens returning home to roost, anyone who objects will be immediately set upon by rabid Progressive brown shirts, accused of microaggressions and ordered to check their privilege.
The backroom rationale will be that the students are being indoctrinated not educated so there. After all, why fund an education that no one is receiving.
Who didn't see this coming.
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LGBBTQQIAAP
White gay male reps 'not oppressed enough' to be in LGBT societies, say campaigners '-- RT UK
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 13:23
White gay male representatives should be excluded from LGBT+ societies, because they don't face oppression in their community, student campaigners have said.
The National Union of Students' LGBT+ Campaign called for those who represent gay men to be removed from LGBT+ societies at their yearly conference in Sheffield this week.
The motion the group passed specifically implies discrimination and prejudice is more likely to happen if white 'cis' gay men dominate the society. Cisgender, often abbreviated to 'cis', refers to people whose physiology and identity match the gender they were assigned at birth.
The campaign also seeks to push LGBT+ societies into scrapping the position completely.
''The reps system exists to ensure that committees can always have a reserved place for groups which disproportionately face oppression within the LGBT+ community,'' the motion said.
''Gay men do not face oppression as gay men within the LGBT+ community and do not need a reserved place on society committees.''
The motion also addresses the contentious ''no-platforming'' debate, whereby speakers are denied a platform to express their views if they are thought to be ''bigoted.''
''Students' Unions have a choice of who to host as speakers, and denying them that platform is a choice that SUs should feel free to make on ideological and welfare-based grounds. We reaffirm our commitment to a policy of no platform for fascists,'' it reads.
Speaking to Gay Times (GT) Magazine on Wednesday, a spokesperson for the National Union of Students (NUS) said the motion defending ''no platform and safe spaces'' was passed at the yearly conference without a single amendment.
''All delegates are free to submit motions for discussion but they do not necessarily represent the views of the NUS if at all. The NUS does not have any committee places solely reserved for men, this is because we recognize that the LGBT+ community is far wider than just men, at a national level we have open places where anyone can put themselves forward for nomination,'' the spokesperson said.
The National Union of Students LGBT+ Campaign says it has played a key role in changing the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) students in Britain. It describes itself as an autonomous wing of the NUS.
The group has been a central player in multiple campaigns that brought about serious legal change, including gender recognition and civil partnerships. Last December, it dispatched more than 4,000 Christmas cards to Prime Minister David Cameron, demanding he support equal marriage rights.
Teachers on TV Land
Caliphate!
Donald Trump Featured in Islamic State Group Propaganda Video
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 00:37
The video uses the Republican presidential front-runner as a recruiting tool.
Segments of an interview that Donald Trump gave to the "Today Show" have been used in a video released by a pro-Islamic State media group that praises the recent Brussels attacks in which 31 were killed and 270 injured.
The nine-minute video titled "The Exile of Islam and Brussels Attacks" was released by the Al-Battar Media Foundation, and shows the Republican presidential hopeful's photo in flames while playing the interview clips.
RELATED: Donald Trump Presidency is a 'Global Risk'
''Brussels was one of the great cities, one of the most beautiful cities of the world 20 years ago, and safe and now it's a horror show, an absolute horror show,'' he is heard saying.
The video also has footage taken at Brussels Airport and Maalbeek Metro station after this week's suicide blasts.
"The crusade jets including the Belgian are still bombing the Muslims in Iraq and Levant in the day and the night, killing children, women, old, and destroying mosques and schools," a speaker says in Arabic.
Belgium is a member of the U.S.-led anti-Islamic State group coalition, that since since September 2014 has conducted several airstrikes without authorization from a government or the United Nations.
EuroLand
Eurocorps in Strasbourg: is it really a European military with no UK participation?
Thu, 24 Mar 2016 22:10
Military property '' Access Forbidden. In the neighbourhood of Aubert de Vincelles, in a suburb south of Strasbourg, the sign in a large, open field leads to a large building enshrouded in fog. But there are no officers here lacing up their boots, nor strapping soldiers climbing nets or steep walls.
My disappointment quickly subsides upon meeting a non-commissioned officer at the reception desk; he speaks to me in heavily-accented French. I give his coat of arms the once-over; he's Spanish, and I will be meeting a German, a Frenchman and a Belgian later on. Welcome to the headquarters of Eurocorps, or the 'European guards'. About 1, 000 soldiers wear uniforms from their countries of origin, but all sport the same beret and use English as their lingua franca.
The troops were rounded up some months ago in order to celebrate fifteen years of these headquarters. Colonel Raºl Suevos, the head of communication for Eurocorps, states proudly that, 'we are the first multinational guards' with 'a rightful place as pioneers'. The project started in 1992 under a Franco-German initiative. Belgium, Spain, and Luxembourg joined afterwards; hence the five-nation framework of the army guards. Poland, Austria, Greece and Turkey made up the remaining strength afterwards. 'For the moment this represents a mobilisable force of about 60, 000 people', adds the colonel. The newest recruits in 2009 are Romania, Italy and - wait for it - the United States.
The shadow cast by NatoThe Eurocorps are a testament to the evolution of the European security and defence policy (ESDP). The European parliament gave Eurocorps their full backing with a strong majority; Eurocorps was placed as a 'standing force under EU control' and all EU members were 'invited to participate'. It is, however, the recent treaty of Strasbourg which gives its 'patent of nobility' by formalising Eurocorps' status to an international level. The European defence community (EDC) project failed sixty years ago. 'L'Europe de la d(C)fense' ('European defence') has now started to take shape. According to the Eurobarometer poll in 2008, 64% of Europeans think that decisions regarding defence and foreign policy should be made collectively.
'We are, perhaps, the most advanced guards in terms of technical capabilities; one of the few licensed high availability headquarters for Nato,' comments Colonel Suevos. So, does Eurocorps always have a place on the strategic scene if they prove exemplary response times? The US is casting a shadow on 'l'Europe de la d(C)fense', and the predominance of Nato in European affairs casts doubt on the self-governing of European defence policies.
The aim is not to replace Nato according to Lieutenant General Pedro Pitarch, who is also the commanding general of Eurocorps. 'Nobody is interested in defying the purpose of Nato; it is not a question of choosing between European defence policies or those of Nato, either,' he explains. 'It is both together; not one or the other.' Colonel Suevos confirms that, 'we work together with Nato but it's the 'cadre nations' who decide.'
Towards a European militaryThere is a long road towards Europe being unanimous regarding the ESDP. As a large European military force, the UK is hesitant on breaking away from its American ally. Is it really a European military if there is no participation from the UK? Is that the will of the European people? It seems that way from the surveys; 36% of Europeans think that a policy on security and defence '' allowing the EU to face up to international crises '' should be made a priority, according to the Eurobarometer for the European elections between 4 and 7 June 2009. (Also having protection for consumers and public health protection, or successfully combating climate change).
I encounter Roger Strelbicki in a slightly warmer place; he is the president of the 'association du Mouvement in Bas-Rhin' (north-eastern France, near Strasbourg). A pin in the shape of a dove adorns the lapel of his jacket, illustrating his pacifist stance. Roger is against the arms industry, Eurocorps and Nato. In his opinion they are 'instruments of war'. He is in favour of slashing military budgets, disbanding the armies, nuclear disarmament and for 'European defence of course, but the defence of people's lives. Defending the lives of people is not defence using weapons,' he adds. He deplores those political parties who are passive and 'unable to fight it out until the end'.
Army Erasmus?Having combined with various other anti-Nato organisations, the 'Mouvement de la Paix' ('peace movement') joins them all in Strasbourg. They call for peaceful protests and denounce the CRS ('compagnie r(C)publicaine de s(C)curit(C)', the French riot squad), who 'let the rioting demonstrators just get on with it, then blame us so that we take the rap. They have done everything to stop our protest; humiliating us, controlling the press, tear gas bombs'... The anti-war movement is ongoing and more than a worthy adversary for the 'state warriors'. That is why they are doing everything to discredit us.' This sixty-year-old association say that Europe's future objectives should not be about increasing military budgets, creating a common market for (fire) arms or investing in research.
Sandrine B(C)lier is the leader of the Europe Ecologie coalition and also in charge of conscripting new members in the north-east region. European defence is a secondary issue in her opinion: 'The real enemies are natural disasters. We do not need an army force; we have re-think about the defence of civilians particular to the EU.'
We do not need an army force: the real enemies are natural disasters
The greens are therefore advocating the creation of a European civilian guard for peace, who intervene earlier in order to prevent conflicts. Army or no army; there is a project which is marching along nicely: the creation of a military Erasmus to 'teach the military leaders of tomorrow to understand, appreciate and defend what we have in common, and that which distinguishes us,' explains Jean-Marie Bockel, minister of state to the minister of defence, with responsibility for defence and veterans.
Many thanks to the cafebabel.com local team in Strasbourg. Visit their babelblog here
NA_Tech News
iOS 9.3 is hosed!
Agenda 2030
New Study indicates Sea Level Rise is a Bigger Problem than Previously Estimated | PerfScience
Fri, 25 Mar 2016 12:09
Humans are being wide off the mark regarding severity of global sea level rise, said a team of researchers in a new study published this week in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. The study team informed that the planet could experience much more rise in sea levels than previously estimated, thanks to climate change which is going to worsen in the future. The research team said that 2 degree Celsius target set by climate scientists and policymaker isn't enough.
Several nations around the globe have pledged to curb greenhouse gas emissions and limit planet's warming to 2 degrees Celsius by the next century, but these efforts are not sufficient to control sea level rise, suggested the study published in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics.
Currently, climate researchers are underestimating the severity of sea level rise and it could lead to a rise of several meters in world's seas by 2100, said James Hansen, a renowned climate scientist at Columbia University and a researcher included in the study. Sea level rise of several meters could further lead to super-storms on earth, Hansen added. The famed researcher first warned about global warming in 1980s.
''We are in a position of potentially causing irreparable harm to our children, grandchildren and future generations. This is a complex story, but one with important practical implications'', as per Hansen.
The coastal water level rise alone will be the biggest problem for many of the coastal cities around the globe, said study researchers. Most of these cities will drown with the sea level rise of several meters, they added.
Many current climate models are not accounting for feedback mechanisms that create an association between the earth's temperature rise and rise in sea levels non-linear, said the researchers. Melting of ice in Antarctica and Greenland is going to have unexpected consequences in the upcoming decades, they stated.
Hansen said the world should think about 'gradually raising' tax on fossil fuels so that a solution to the problem could be found.
According to a report in TIME by Justin Worland, "The finding, previously published in draft form last year, departs from most consensus research on the topic of sea level rise-a fact that Hansen and his counterparts state up front. The researchers suggest that most climate models don't account for the feedback mechanisms that make the correlation between temperature rise and sea level rise non-linear. Changes to circulation of warm and cold water in the Atlantic due to ice melting in Greenland and Antartica could have unanticipated effects, according to the study."
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), an international body that publishes the scientific consensus on global warming used by many policymakers, has suggested that sea levels have risen by a few millimeters each year since the early 1990s. published published in the journal PNAS has suggested that sea levels will rise between 0.75 m (2.5 ft) and 1.9 m (6.2 ft) by 2100 as warming increases.
"The scientists estimate that existing climate models aren't accounting well enough for current ice loss off of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. Right now, Antarctica and Greenland ice sheets both contribute under or near 1 millimeter to sea-level rise every year; they each contain enough stored ice to drive up ocean levels by 20 and 200 feet, respectively," according to a news report published by Newsweek.
But then again, we don't even know that ice loss is exponential. Ian Joughin-a University of Washington researcher unaffiliated with the paper and who has studied the tipping points of Antarctic glaciers-put it this way: Think about the stock market in the '80s. If you observed a couple years of accelerating growth, and decided that rate would double every 4 years-you'd have something like 56,000 points in the Dow Jones Industrial by now.
In a report published by the WatertownDailyYimes, "The sweeping paper, 52 pages in length and with 19 authors, draws on evidence from ancient climate change or "paleo-climatology," as well as climate experiments using computer models and some modern observations. Calling it a "paper" really isn't quite right - it's actually a synthesis of a wide range of old, and new, evidence."
"I think almost everybody who's really familiar with both paleo and modern is now very concerned that we are approaching, if we have not passed, the points at which we have locked in really big changes for young people and future generations," Hansen said in an interview.
Vaccine$
Robert De Niro pulls anti-vaccination film from Tribeca film festival | Film | The Guardian
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 13:20
Robert De Niro and his wife Grace Hightower. The actor has bowed to pressure to withdraw the anti-vaccination film directed by disgraced British doctor Andrew Wakefield. Photograph: Everett/REX/Shutterstock
A controversial film about the discredited link between autism and vaccinations has been pulled from Robert De Niro's Tribeca film festival, after the actor consulted ''the scientific community'' and found ''concerns with certain things in this film''.
Related:Robert De Niro steps into autism vaccination row by screening film
The father of an autistic child and co-founder of the festival, De Niro at first defended the decision to premiere Vaxxed: from Cover-Up to Catastrophe, despite outcry from doctors and researchers.
Repeatedstudies involving more than a million children have found there is no evidence to link childhood vaccines to autism. But a small movement of activists persists in the belief that vaccinations might somehow harm children.
On Saturday De Niro released a statement to explain the new decision. ''My intent in screening this film was to provide an opportunity for conversation around an issue that is deeply personal to me and my family,'' he said.
''But after reviewing it over the past few days with the Tribeca film festival team and others from the scientific community, we do not believe it contributes to or furthers the discussion I had hoped for.
''The Festival doesn't seek to avoid or shy away from controversy. However, we have concerns with certain things in this film that we feel prevent us from presenting it in the Festival program. We have decided to remove it from our schedule.''
The controversial film was directed by Andrew Wakefield, a disgraced British former doctor who published a study in 1998 that claimed links between a vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) and autism. The paper was quickly found to contain numerous flaws and was deemed by the British Medical Journal ''an elaborate fraud''.
The Lancet, which originally published the study, retracted it in 2010, the same year that Wakefield lost was stripped of his licence to practise medicine in the UK.
Wakefield appears in the trailer for his film, and claims that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have hidden evidence that would support his discredited claims. The trailer also asks ''are our children safe'' over the image of smoke swirling out of a syringe.
Prominent scientists and film-makers urged the festival to remove the film, arguing that De Niro and organizers legitimized the claims made by Wakefield by premiering it at their prestigious festival.
CLIPS AND DOCS
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VIDEO-Turkey slams Belgian and Dutch officials over release of Brussels suicice bomber | euronews, world news
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 04:43
Belgian MPs have been grilling federal ministers over the failure of government and intelligence services to prevent the deadly attacks in the capital.
Interior Minister Jan Jambon and Foreign Minister Didier Reynders were among those who spelled out what their offices did in the lead-up to the bombings.
Reynders said on July 14, 2015, Turkish authorities had informed them that one of the Brussels airport suicide bombers Ibrahim El Bakraoui had been deported to Amsterdam but they didn't give any reason why.
In response, Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Belgian authorities of being soft on militant groups and described them as being ''incapable'' after the Netherlands released Bakraoui. Dutch authorities say Turkey failed to follow normal procedures when expelling him.
But speaking to supporters in the central Turkish town of Sorghum, Erdogan said: ''We detained this guy, we deported him, sent him back but they didn't do what was necessary and released that terrorist. Now, you should account for it.''
Erdogan also went on to compare the Islamic State with the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) which is waging an insurgency in Turkey's southeast, saying both are terrorist organisations.
VIDEO-Belgium's infrastructure at risk of cyber attack, EU counter-terrorism chief | euronews, world news
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 04:33
Belgium is a nation on high alert following the rush hour attacks at the airport and a metro stop in the capital. Brussels airport has announced that it will not re-open for passenger flights before Tuesday, as experts examine the damage to the building.
Now attention is turning to the security of Belgium's nuclear facilities, after eleven workers had their security passes revoked due to intelligence warnings.
Though security was stepped up around nuclear plants, the EU's counter-terrorism chief says that the facilities and other major infrastructure remain at risk of a cyber attack.
In total nine people have been arrested in Belgium as investigations continue to uncover jihadist networks in the wake of the Brussels attacks.
The makeshift tribute to the 31 victims and more than 260 injured in the attacks continues to grow over the weekend, as Brussels comes to terms with the events of Tuesday.
VIDEO-Brussels March Against Fear is called off over security concerns | euronews, world news
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 04:23
The March Against Fear scheduled to take place in Brussels has been called off.
The rally due to be held Sunday was organised to encourage solidarity in the country hit by deadly suicide bombings on Tuesday.
Citing security concerns, the Brussels mayor called for the march to be postponed to a later date:
''We share the emotion of the population and we prefer to leave the security forces working (on the investigation) so we ask that the march that many people, us included, want to participate in would be postponed by a few weeks''
The terror threat levels remains at level 3 out of 4 following the attacks meaning a rally would require considerable manpower from police forces already stretched by investigations.
A makeshift memorial in the city's centre continues to attract thousands, uniting Belgium in a time of grief.
VIDEO-Belgian prosecutors charge three men with terrorist offences following the Brussels attacks | euronews, world news
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 04:19
Belgian prosecutors have charged a man with terrorist offences in relation to the Brussels attacks.
The suspect was named as Faycal C but no further information was given. However, Belgian media are reporting that he is the third man seen on CCTV at the airport seen alongside the two suspected suicide bombers. Le Soir newspaper said he was identified by the taxi driver who took them to the airport.
No weapons or explosives were uncovered during a search of the suspect's home. Two other men were charged with terrorist activities and membership of a terrorist group.
In total nine people have been arrested in Belgium as investigations continue to uncover jihadist networks in the wake of the Brussels attacks.
In light of ongoing police operations, the interior minister has asked that a rally in tribute to the victims scheduled for Sunday be called off.
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Images of DecemberTue, Jan 05, 2016 -(1:00)
VIDEO-Cruz 'Mad As Hell' At Trump, Belgium Nuke Plant Targeted, More Isis Attacks In The Works | Erin Burnett Outfont
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 03:21
Related Episodes March 24, 2016 Cruz Calls Trump "Sniveling Coward", Top Belgian Official Resigns Over Attacks, 5 More Suspects Arrested March 24, 2016 Arrests made in Brussels, New CNN poll says Clinton would beat Trump, Americans warned not to travel to Europe March 24, 2016 Radovan Karadzic guilty of genocide, Brussels suspects on run, Trump retweets Cruz's wife
VIDEO-Keith Olbermann: ISIS Nuke Threat Is 'Theoretical,' But Trump Danger Is Scary | MRCTV
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 02:54
[See NewsBusters for more.] Far-left host Keith Olbermann appeared on The View, Friday, to warn that while the threat of a nuclear ISIS is ''theoretical,'' the danger of Donald Trump becoming President is a ''distinct'' possibility. Olbermann wondered aloud, ''Somebody said the other day...'What would happen if ISIS got nukes?.... So, I said, 'What would happen if Donald Trump got nukes?'" Joy Behar mused, ''Who would use it first?'' Olbermann explained his comparison: ''But also, which is the more realistic concern for us at the moment? I mean, the second one is a distinct, visible possibility and the first one is theoretical, but very unlikely because they are difficult to move. But he gets them the first day in office.''
VIDEO-UN Hit With New Sex Allegations in Central African Republic
Sun, 27 Mar 2016 00:37
U.N. and French peacekeepers have already been accused of widespread abuse including offering food to children in return for sex.
Even more allegations of sexual abuse have hit the United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic, where the international mission is already facing a barrage of criticism.
RELATED: UN Guilty of Sexual Abuse Cover Ups, Says Whistleblower
The U.N. mission in the Central African Republic, MINUSCA, said it had received ''new information on the allegations of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse committed by its members and civilian U.N. workers,'' in 2014 and 2015 in the central region of Kemo.
''At present, our main concern is to ensure that the victims are assisted and that a probe is launched so that the perpetrators are punished,'' it said.
The accusations are only the latest to hit the MINUSCA force in the deeply poor and restive country. Both U.N. and French peacekeepers have been accused of widespread abuse including offering food to children in return for sex.
Since the start of the U.N. peacekeeping mandate in September 2014, more than 40 suspected cases of sexual attacks and abuse have been reported, and French investigators too are looking into rape charges against forces stationed in the former colony.
The U.N. said in a 2015 report that 480 allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse had been made between 2008 and 2013. Of these, a third involved minors in countries where U.N. peacekeepers operated, including the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Haiti and South Sudan.
VIDEO-PBS NewsHour full episode March 25, 2016 - YouTube
Sat, 26 Mar 2016 17:38
VIDEO-Markus and Cara on ABC's The Morning Blend - Love on a Plate - YouTube
Sat, 26 Mar 2016 16:22
VIDEO-Unlikely partners? How Western media largely ignored State Dept-Google-Al Jazeera plot against Assad '-- RT Op-Edge
Sat, 26 Mar 2016 16:20
The Western media has quietly ignored an unexpected collaboration between Washington, Google, and ''independent'' Al Jazeera aimed at helping to overthrow Syria's Bashar Assad. Would they be as oblivious to a similar cozy ''partnership'' involving Russia?
Last Monday, WikiLeaks lifted the lid on a correspondence between Jared Cohen, the President of 'Google Ideas,' and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's staff in the summer of 2012. In his July 25, 2012 email to top State Department's officials, Cohen pitched his about-to-be-launched ''tool'' to Clinton's inner circle, asking it to ''keep close hold'' of it.
The leak revealing the project, which would seem to be an outrageous scandal to some, has actually been quite difficult to spot in the news. Since WikiLeaks released the latest batch of Clinton's emails on March 21, a Google news search spits back about 30 web sources related to the story.
Read more
Of those, only two '' The Independent and Daily Mail '' could arguably be considered major mainstream media outlets. That means there were slim chances that the eye of an average newsreader would catch wind of the State Department's teamwork with the US' biggest tech giant, Google, and Arab media outlet Al Jazeera.
According to what Cohen wrote, it appears that Google's innovative visualizer worked to ''publicly track and map the defections in Syria and which parts of the government they are coming from.''
''Our logic behind this is that while many people are tracking the atrocities, nobody is visually representing and mapping the defections, which we believe are important in encouraging more to defect and giving confidence to the opposition,'' he said.
Google also collaborated with Al Jazeera, which took primary ownership over the tool, because of ''how hard'' it was to get information out of Syria.
At the State Department, the idea was lauded and passed on to Clinton via her private email by deputy chief of staff Jake Sullivan as ''a pretty cool idea.''
RT asked media expert Lionel why the revelations failed to receive much attention in the Western media.
''I don't expect a reaction from Western media because Western media hasn't even read this, has no idea about this,'' Lionel told RT. ''But can you imagine if the same set of facts were involved with the different countries, different corporations around the world depending upon your frame of reference. This would either be an outrage or 'well, maybe this is a delightful and benign cooperation, an independent tech giant'...and all for the common good of liberty' and whatever. It depends upon your perspective.''
Another curious aspect is the fact that the WikiLeaks release directly involved Clinton's email, which has been a hot topic tainting her presidential campaign for a year now. Clinton's opponents as well as the US media have been taking nearly every opportunity to poke her for her ''careless'' misdeed '' with the notable exception of this story.
The three parties in this collaboration did not end up together by chance, either.
Funded by the Qatari government, Al Jazeera portrays itself as ''the first independent news channel in the Arab world'' and ''one of the world's most influential news networks,'' whose main goal is it to give ''a global audience an alternative voice.''
Qatar has been largely supporting the rebels in the Syrian conflict, along with Washington and other anti-Assad powers that even mulled launching a direct military intervention on Syrian soil last October.
It turned out that Google's Syrian Defector Tracking was a good fit for Al Jazeera. It even ended up winning the channel a prestigious Online Media Award for ''Best technical innovation.''
Read more
''This is going to show you very fascinating aspects of the new warfare '' how media, and corporations and various platforms are merging together. We are not sure who the military is, who is the government,'' Lionel said.
He suggested that the State Department's reluctance to release Clinton's emails could be explained by the intention to hide ''the conflation of allegedly private industry with the government.''
''We have this new world here. We have the government and we have the Pentagon, DAPRA and defense advanced research program agency, we have private industry, we have these various platforms. We have this new introduction of mercenary groups and private contacting teams. [But] our country [the US] has had a very strict barrier, Posse Comitatus, that separates private law enforcement from military," Lionel said. "There have always been distinctions and barriers and jurisdiction alliance. In this new world, these barriers are being eliminated, dissolved.''
As Lionel says, the collaboration between Google and the US government only seems to be ''innocent'' if there is a bias towards ''who you like'... and the information that's being propagated.''
READ MORE: For propaganda & 'democracy promotion': State Dept seeks budget to counter RT
When contacted by RT, Google declined to comment on the situation, yet did not hesitate to proudly stress Al Jazeera's achievement.
''No comment, but pointing out that this data visualization project was very public, Al Jazeera won a journalism award for it,'' the tech giant said in an email.
Given these circumstances, it would not hurt to wonder what the Western media's reaction might have been if the same collaboration had occurred across the ocean and involved, let's say, the Russian government, a well-known media outlet, and a Russian internet giant.
Since its inception in 2005, RT has often been labeled as anything ranging from a ''Russian propaganda machine'' to a ''propaganda bullhorn'' by high-profile Western officials and politicians.
''If RT wanted PR in American media, this is exactly the move it should make. You would never hear the end of that on American media,'' Ted Rall, a political cartoonist and author, told RT. ''You really don't have a right to call anyone a propaganda if you yourself is doing the same thing.''
As for Al Jazeera's prize winning tool, it appears to be currently defunct for unspecified reasons.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.
VIDEO-Hillary Calls It Quits! - YouTube
Thu, 24 Mar 2016 22:20
VIDEO-Glenn Reynolds: Bill Clinton's inadvertent truth
Thu, 24 Mar 2016 22:02
Glenn Harlan Reynolds11:07 a.m. EDT March 24, 2016
Bill Clinton campaigns for his wife in Spokane, Wash., on March 21, 2016.(Photo: Tyler Tjomsland, The (Spokane, Wash.) Spokesman-Review, via AP)
Monday night in Spokane, Wash., former President Bill Clinton praised his wife, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, by contrasting her to what he called "the awful legacy of the last eight years'' under President Obama.
Although a Clinton spokesperson has since walked back Bill's apparent gaffe, that couldn't have gone over well at the White House '-- or, at any rate, at the mansion in Cuba where President Obama was staying just then '-- but Clinton was right. Barack Obama has left an awful legacy, and the next president, whoever it is, will have a lot to deal with. Fortunately, the next president '-- whether it's Hillary, Donald Trump or Ted Cruz, or even Bernie Sanders '-- will probably be a better president.
For one example of Obama's ''awful legacy,'' we need look no further than the terror attacks this week in Brussels. These attacks, which killed dozens and injured close to 200, were perpetrated by the Islamic State, the group that Obama once disparagingly called a ''jayvee team.''
Well, for a jayvee team, they've done a lot of damage, in the Middle East and beyond, and it's in large part because of Obama's premature withdrawal from Iraq, which fulfilled a political promise, but which had the effect of squandering a decade of blood and treasure, and costing many thousands of lives.
As late as 2010, things were going sufficiently well in Iraq that the Obama Administration was bragging about what a huge success they had going there. But in his 2008 campaign, Obama had promised to pull U.S. troops out of Iraq, and so it was essential that he do so before 2012, or his antiwar supporters would complain. So Obama pulled out. And that was a mistake.
As journalist Bob Woodward observed: ''Look, Obama does not like war. But as you look back on this, the argument from the military was, let's keep 10,000, 15,000 troops there as an insurance policy. And we all know insurance policies make sense. We have 30,000 troops or more in South Korea still 65 years or so after the war. When you are a superpower, you have to buy these insurance policies. And he didn't in this case.''
USA TODAY
Europe's terror enclaves hidden in plain sight: David Andelman
No, we didn't. In fact, as The New Yorker's Dexter Filkins reported, the White House didn't want to make a deal to stay. Filkins, an Iraq War critic, agreed with radio host Hugh Hewitt that Obama's withdrawal may have been "the worst strategic decision of many bad strategic decisions.''
And the consequence of that mistake was the rise of ISIL after the United States pulled out, lost influence and lost the intelligence network that it had maintained in Iraq.
USA TODAY
Trump would grab more power than Obama: Column
POLICING THE USA: A look at race, justice, media
The White House made plain to intelligence agencies that it didn't want to hear bad news about ISIL. From low-level analysts to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, everyone knew, so it increasingly appears, that the intelligence was being politically skewed to support the Obama Administration's preferred view that ISIL wasn't a threat, thus justifying the pullout and Obama's policy of inaction. The result is a "messy ... intelligence scandal," as the Observer put it, that would be a lot messier if it didn't implicate a Democratic president that so many in the press want to protect.
And now, despite all of Obama's Nobel Peace Prize posturing, The Washington Post reports that his administration has put a lot more of our military in Iraq than it has been saying. We may have to fight the war all over again.
Bill Clinton is right. Obama's is an awful legacy, one that has borne ugly fruit in the Middle East, in Europe and '-- as Islamic-State-inspired attacks strike here, too, from San Bernadino to Garland, Texas '-- in the United States.
Writer Roger Simon asks, "Are we ready for reality after the Brussels terror attacks?'' Nope. But with luck, we will be after November.
Glenn Harlan Reynolds, a University of Tennessee law professor, is the author of The New School: How the Information Age Will Save American Education from Itself, and a member of USA TODAY's Board of Contributors.
In addition to its own editorials, USA TODAY publishes diverse opinions from outside writers, including our Board of Contributors. To read more columns like this, go to the Opinion front page.
Read or Share this story: http://usat.ly/1MnJq8E

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Brussels

  Nazi salutes seen at attack memorial.mp3
Belgium’s infrastructure at risk of cyber attack, EU counter-terrorism chief.mp3
Brolf+McCaull-Brussels-Paris-AIRPORT TERROR-DARK WEB.MP3
Brussels March Against Fear is called off over security concerns.mp3
CNN Nick Paton Walsh reporting to Erin Burnett-FIlm set.mp3
JCD 810-CLIP-RELISTEN-odd clip turkey and hollande and belgium.mp3
PBS NEwshour Belgian-Kids need leaders+philharmonic   Nazi salutes seen at attack memorial.mp3
Professor ryan_maur[murrow] on Frank Gaffney_gay_jihadi.m4a
Turkey slams Belgian and Dutch officials over release of Brussels suicice bomber.mp3

Caliphate!

Suicide bomber kills at least 26 at Iraqi soccer match.mp3

DPRK

Korean-American man says he stole N. Korea secrets.mp3

Elections 2016

CNN Stephen Miller Trump Women.MP3
Meanwhile belgian LEA's are patrolling muslim neighborhooods and making arrests.mp3
Millennials move to Canada if Trump elected Presient.mp3
MSNBC-Rep. Keith Ellison- Muslims Not Responsible for 'Majority of Domestic Terrorist Attacks'-WTF?.mp3
PBS's Shields and Brooks Slam Cruz After Brussels Terrorism.mp3
RT-Chaya-How Western media largely ignored State Dept-Google-Al Jazeera plot against Assad.mp3
The VIEW-Keith Olbermann- ISIS Nuke Threat Is ‘Theoretical,’ But Trump Danger Is Scary.mp3
Trump Voters Are Unwashed Mouth breathers-Tucker Carlson.m4a

F-Russia

Putin Jokes About Kerry's Briefcase- 'Probably You Brought Some Money With You to Haggle'.mp3

JCD Clips

Belgian stock market unfazed.mp3
Bus Stop in Belgium story.mp3
coulda woulda shoula in Belgium.mp3
david brooks on loveless trump.mp3
David brooks spewing One.mp3
David Muir Breaking News no contnt.mp3
e need all hands on deck.mp3
Eric Prince first wrap_did nothing.mp3
eric Prince Libya story Hofgar wTF.mp3
Eric Prince Overview.mp3
Eric Prince WTF 2.mp3
Eric Prince WTF3 3 kicker.mp3
Favid Brooks spewing 2 option.mp3
ISIS in europe slshing out or not slashing out.mp3
Journalists in Turkey the sdtory.mp3
Mike morell.mp3
nixon and drugs.mp3

Slave Wage Economy

Indonesian cabbies protest cheap taxi apps MOTORCYCLES.mp3
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