Reader’s links for Feb. 9 – 2016

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In order to preserve the flow of conversation about various posted items, and also in order to make it easier for visitors to find the list of related links being shared by other readers, regulars and interested parties in one place, each day a post is automatically created at a minute past midnight ET.

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Thank you all for those that take the effort to assist this site in keeping the public informed. Below, typically people can find the latest enemy propaganda, news items of related materials from multiple countries and languages, op-eds from many excellent sites who write on our topics, geopolitics and immigration issues and so on.

About Eeyore

Canadian artist and counter-jihad and freedom of speech activist as well as devout Schrödinger's catholic

61 Replies to “Reader’s links for Feb. 9 – 2016”

  1. “Am Israel Chai” Violates Facebook Community Standards

    Again, the brave moderators of Facebook have taken down yet another example of incitement of murdering Jews by anti-Israel users.

    Actually no, those are still up. But look what DID violate Facebook’s precious “community standards”.

    You are reading that correctly. Pages and pages of Jew-hate are still up (or simply hidden from Israelis), and they do not violate Facebook standards (as proven by Shurat Hadin).

    But saying, “The Nation Of Israel Lives” is too much for Facebook’s shameful community “standards”.

    Israel Law Center (Shurat HaDin) is currently taking this very issue to court. Facebook has claimed in their defense that “social media services, like themselves, are simply neutral bulletin boards and cannot be held liable under American law for the content of their user’s Facebook pages.”

    When something like “Am Israel Chai” gets removed and endless pages glorifying Jew murder get the “we found it doesn’t violate our Community Standards” treatment, there’s clearly nothing neutral about it.

  2. Al-Sabireen bears watching.
    Iran Infiltrates the West Bank
    “The Patient Ones,” Al-Sabireen, are seeking Palestinians as a group to become an Iranian proxy in the region, and redoubling efforts to eliminate the “Zionist entity” and replace it with an Islamist empire.

    Loosed from its sanction-based constrictions, Iran is now free to underwrite terror throughout the region. This is precisely what is happening in Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, Iraq and the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

    Iran’s infiltration of the West Bank should serve as a red flag not only for Israel, but also for the U.S. and other Western powers. An Israeli pullout, leading to a Hamas takeover of the West Bank, has been a subject of concern. Now, a growing number of Israelis and Palestinians are wondering if such a vacuum will provide an opening for Iran.

  3. Daesh smuggles Afghanistan’s timber to Pakistan, report (khaama, Feb 9, 2016)

    “A report published by the Voice of America (VOA) reveals that the loyalists of the Islamic State (IS) who have named Afghanistan and Pakistan region as the province of Khorasan are involved in timber smuggling.

    Local officials and tribal elders in the eastern region of the country have told VOA that the terrorist group has imported tree-cutting machines to their areas.

    Armed men associating themselves with IS-Khorasan or Daesh have been seen in Achin,

    Naziyan and Dehbala districts of eastern Nangarhar province cutting trees with the imported machines for smuggling to Pakistan.

    Local residents have been cited by VOA as saying that timber-loaded trucks are sent to Pakistan daily. Some of the timber is sold in local markets in Afghanistan.

    “Smuggling takes place … in areas alongside the Durand Line,” Malak Hashem, a tribal elder in Naziyan, told VOA, referring to the Afghan-Pakistan border.

    Tribal leaders say the Afghan government is turning a blind eye to the smuggling…”

  4. U.S. to deploy 100s of additional troops to Helmand (khaama, Feb 9, 2016)

    “As the battle between Afghan forces and Taliban toughens and reports suggest that some areas are on the verge of collapse, the United States has decided sending hundreds of additional troops to southern Afghanistan’s Helmand province.

    By month’s end, a force described as battalion-strength, consisting of mostly army soldiers, will arrive in Helmand province where US and UK forces have struggled in battles for over a decade to drive out the Taliban, the Guardian reports.

    In keeping with Barack Obama’s formal declaration that the US is not engaged in combat, despite elite forces recently participating in an hours-long battle in Helmand, defense officials said the additional troops would not take part in combat. But they will help the existing Helmand force defend itself against Taliban attacks, officials said.

    US military officials declined to offer many specifics about an upcoming reinforcement, but they described the mission as primarily aimed at bolstering the performance of the embattled 215th Corps of the Afghan military, through training.

    The 215th Corps has recently had its commander replaced amid performance and corruption concerns, and has endured “unusually high operating tempo for long periods of time”, outgoing US commander General John Campbell testified to Congress last week. It is among four Afghan corps that still have US military advisers embedded within it, despite a recent pullback to advise at higher levels.

    “Our mission remains the same,” said Colonel Michael Lawhorn, a spokesman for the US command in Kabul, “to train, advise, and assist our Afghan counterparts, and not to participate in combat operations.”

    The Guardian understands the additional forces in Helmand will not increase the current total troop numbers in Afghanistan, which currently stand at 9,800, but will instead be deployed from troops already in the country. Batallion strengths vary, but can constitute a force of up to 800 troops.

    While new advisers make up a significant component of the additional forces, Lawhorn said that another mission of the reinforcement will be to “bolster force protection for the current staff of advisers”, suggesting a concern for the safety of the existing Helmand force amid major recent Taliban gains.

    The US military has sounded warnings of a deteriorating situation in Afghanistan, in Helmand and beyond, that have prompted significant revisions in Obama’s war plans.

    Already Obama has agreed to leave 5,500 troops in Afghanistan past the end of his presidency, but his newly confirmed commander, General John “Mick” Nicholson, told a Senate panel recently that increased insurgent violence will prompt him to re-evaluate troop requests, and left the door open to bolstering a force Obama has sought to draw down.

    Opium-rich Helmand has emerged as a Taliban priority, as most of its 2015 attacks focused on the province. Unlike earlier eras of the war, the Taliban have declined to take a winter break and have fought in the province all year.

    The Taliban have come close to overrunning a district center in Helmand, Sangin, where more than 100 UK troops died during a war that has entered its 15th year, despite US airstrikes in late December. Kabul is said to control only three of Helmand’s 14 districts, including the provincial capital of Lashkar Gah.

    Outgoing commander Campbell, testifying to Congress last week, said that while current rules of engagement prevented US troops who are not engaged in counter-terrorism raids from initiating fights with the Taliban, “I have no restrictions on providing force protection” for troops that train Afghans.

    Lawhorn described the reinforcement as a “planned deployment of additional personnel”, but at least one congressional official contacted by the Guardian was unaware of the plan.”

  5. Rape victim, 13, brutally abused by gang of 12 Asian men was reported missing to police 71 TIMES during her year-long ordeal but they failed to act

    Victim’s mother reported teenager missing but police told her to keep diary

    12 men abused girl when she was 13 and 14 – sometimes five at a time

    Suspected ringleader Arif Chowdhury, 20, ‘fled to Bangladesh in 2012’

  6. Syria: At least 10 dead as car bomb targets Damascus police club

    A car bomb targeting a police officers’ club in central Damascus killed at least ten people, injuring 20 others, in the Syrian capital, Tuesday. The so-called Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) has claimed the attack.

  7. U.S. defense intelligence chief predicts increased ISIS attacks

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Islamic State is likely to step up “the pace and lethality” of its attacks in the months ahead as it seeks to fan the flames of international conflict, the director of the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency said on Monday.

    Speaking to a security conference, Marine Corps Lieutenant General Vincent Stewart linked his warning to the militant group’s establishment of “emerging branches” in Mali, Tunisia, Somalia, Bangladesh and Indonesia.

    He also said he would not be surprised if Islamic State, which has created a self-proclaimed Caliphate across swaths of Syria and Iraq, extended its operations from the Sinai Peninsula deeper into Egypt.

    “Last year, Daesh remained entrenched on Iraqi and Syrian battlefields and expanded globally to Libya, Sinai, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and the Caucasus,” Stewart said, using a derisive Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

  8. Islamic State Commander’ Found Living As Refugee In Rural German Village

    In the latest of a series of raids, German police have searched two homes in a rural village after a television channel interviewed a suspected Islamic State commander living there as a refugee.

    Sankt Johann is a small village in the south west German state, Rhineland-Palatinate. Something of a rural idyll, its 800 residents live between vineyards in the shadow of a 14th century Gothic church. And yet, as SPIEGEL TV reports, this weekend it was the scene of police raids on two Islamic State-linked suspects living in refugee housing.

    Prosecutors’ office spokesman Michael Neuhaus said the two men targeted by the operation are “suspected of taking part in the Syrian civil war as members of a foreign terrorist organisation”. He said there were “no immediate indications that a concrete attack was planned” but declined to give any further details.

    Two houses in the village are used to house Syrian refugees, but among the opponents of the Assad regime living there SPIEGEL TV tracked down a suspected commander of the Islamic State terror group after tip offs from other Syrian activists. They had identified him as a man called Bassam, a notorious commander said to be responsible for the deaths of dozens of people.

    A 32-year-old man, he allegedly fought in the ranks of Islamic State fighter

  9. Intelligence chief: North Korea restarts plutonium reactor

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    WASHINGTON (AP) — North Korea has expanded a uranium enrichment facility and restarted a plutonium reactor that could start recovering material for nuclear weapons in weeks or months, the U.S. intelligence chief said Tuesday in delivering the annual assessment by intelligence agencies of the top dangers facing the country.

    He also said Islamic militants and those inspired by the Islamic State group will continue to pose a threat to Americans at home and abroad; al-Qaida remains an enemy; and the U.S. will continue to see cyber threats from China, Russia and North Korea.

    Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said that Pyongyang announced in 2013 its intention to refurbish and restart nuclear facilities, to include the uranium enrichment facility at Yongbyon and its plutonium production reactor, which was shut down in 2007. Clapper said U.S. intelligence had assessed that North Korea has expanded Yongbyon and restarted the plutonium production reactor there.

  10. They are getting ready to build more nuclear devises, there could be several reasons for this activity but the scariest is that they are going to sell them to Iran or ISIS. Although Saudi and a few are in the market for their own nuclear strike force.

  11. NATO Weighs Mission to Monitor Mediterranean Refugee Flow

    NATO will weigh calls for a naval mission in the eastern Mediterranean Sea to police refugee streams as a fresh exodus from Syria adds to European leaders’ desperation.

    Such a mission, proposed by Germany and Turkey, would thrust the 28-nation alliance into the humanitarian trauma aggravated by the Russian-backed offensive by Syrian troops that drove thousands out of Aleppo and toward Turkey.

    “We will take very seriously a request from Turkey and other allies to look into what NATO can do to help them cope with and deal with the crisis,” North Atlantic Treaty Organization Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters in Brussels on Tuesday.

    NATO is confronted with Russian intervention in the Middle East — including airspace violations over Turkey, an alliance member — after reinforcing its eastern European defenses in response to the Kremlin’s annexation of Crimea and fomenting rebellion in Ukraine in 2014.

  12. U.N. fears for hundreds of thousands if Syria troops encircle Aleppo

    GENEVA/ONCUPINAR, Turkey (Reuters) – Hundreds of thousands of civilians could be cut off from food if Syrian government forces encircle rebel-held parts of Aleppo, the United Nations said on Tuesday, warning of a massive new exodus of refugees fleeing a Russian-backed assault.

    Syrian government forces, backed by Russian air strikes and Iranian and Lebanese Hezbollah fighters, have launched a major offensive in the countryside around Aleppo, which has been divided between government and rebel control for years.

    It amounts to one of the most important shifts of momentum in the five year civil war that has killed 250,000 people and already driven 11 million from their homes.

    Since last week, fighting has already wrecked the first attempt at peace talks for two years and led rebel fighters to speak about losing their northern power base altogether.

    The United Nations is worried the government advance could cut off the last link for civilians in rebel-held parts of Aleppo with the main Turkish border crossing, which has long served as the lifeline for insurgent-controlled territory.

    “It would leave up to 300,000 people, still residing in the city, cut off from humanitarian aid unless cross-line access could be negotiated,” the United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said in an urgent bulletin.

  13. Atwan: ISIS Savagery – from Islamic History; West Likely to “Contain” ISIS Like It Contained Arafat

    In a December 15 lecture about ISIS at the American University in Beirut, Abdel Bari Atwan, former editor-in-chief of “Al-Quds Al-Arabi” and the current editor-in-chief of “Al-Rai Al-Youm” rejected common claims that the savagery of ISIS is alien to Islam, presenting examples of similar conduct from Islamic history. Atwan said that the West faces two options: to contain ISIS or to destroy it. The former is more likely than the latter, he added. The West always starts by trying to destroy organizations that it considers to be terrorist and ends up negotiating with them, Atwan said, citing the Taliban, the PLO, and the IRA as prominent examples.

  14. Iraqi MP Mish’an Al-Jabouri: I Took Millions of Dollars in Bribes, All Iraqi Politicians Do

    In a TV interview, Iraqi MP Mish’an Al-Jabouri admitted that he had taken millions of dollars in bribes. In a January 26 interview with Al-Etejah TV, MP Al-Jabouri claimed that all Iraqi politicians take bribery and that only a coward would not. He claimed that the entire political echelon is corrupt and responsible for the destruction of the country. Al-Jabouri is a member of the Iraqi Commission of Integrity, tasked with investigating governmental corruption. He refused to disclose names of fellow corrupt politicians for fear that “they will kill me right in the street.”

  15. Greek ex-finance minister Varoufakis launches democracy movement

    BERLIN (Reuters) – Yanis Varoufakis, who as Greece’s finance minister last year tried to defy German-backed austerity policies, launched a pan-European movement in Berlin on Tuesday that he said aimed to “democratize” the continent.

    Varoufakis kicked off his “Democracy in Europe Movement 2025” (Diem25) at the historic Volksbuehne theater, a venue well-known for its leftist political activism and its role in the former East Germany’s peaceful revolution.

    “We’ve chosen Berlin precisely because nothing can change in a progressive direction without the full participation of Germany in our European endeavors,” Varoufakis told a news conference in the packed, red-walled theater auditorium.

    His remarks contrast sharply with his behavior during last year’s fraught five-month negotiations over another financial bailout for Greece. Back then, his fiery language alienated many of his euro zone colleagues and he frequently clashed with German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble.

    A self-described “erratic Marxist”, motorbike-riding Varoufakis riled the Germans when comparing the rescue package to the Versailles Treaty, which forced crushing reparations on Germany after World War One and led to the rise of Adolf Hitler.

      • I haven’t read much about him but yes he is dangerous, his campaign to further communize Europe is one that will resonate with the welfare recipients in Europe. This government enslavement of the producers to work for the takers is what the class warfare of the left is all about. We are all going to pay a very large price for letting the left gain so much power and as usual the majority of the price will be with the blood and bodies of the patriotic young.

  16. Turkey fails to prosecute two Chechens for beheading three priests in Syria

    Two Chechens who were accused of beheading three priests in Syria avoided sentencing on murder charges, though they were sentenced to 7.5 years in prison for being a member of a terror organization by an Istanbul court.

    Magomet Abdurakmanov and Ahmad Ramzanov, two Chechens who were captured in Istanbul’s Bagc?lar district on July 4, 2013, along with three Turkish nationals, were accused of murdering three priests in Syria two years ago. However, the court did not hand down a murder sentence on the ground that “the crime was not committed against Turkey and the lack of an agreement on extraditions.”

    The prosecutor accused Abdurakmanov and Ramzanov of beheading Aleppo’s GreekOrthodox Bishop Boulos Yaziji and Syriac Orthodox Bishop Yohanna Ibrahim, who were kidnapped on April 22, 2013, by armed men en route from the Turkish border. They were also accused of murdering another priest in Syria.

    An Istanbul court sentenced the two men to seven and a half years in prison each with charges of being a member of the terror organization. However, the two Chechens will only serve two years in prison due to the Turkish penal code, which automatically lowers prison sentences.

    more :

  17. Zurich prison guard ‘helped Syrian flee jail

    Swiss police on Tuesday launched a manhunt for a Syrian man convicted of rape, after he fled his cell along with a female prison guard.

    The two fugitives may already have left the country, after the guard helped the prisoner break out of jail in Zurich on Monday night, police said in a statement.

    The 27-year-old Syrian man had been sentenced to four years in jail for rape. According to initial police findings, the guard with whom he fled is 32 years old, though her name and nationality were not released. The two fled the prison together, the statement said, and police launched a search operation as soon as they learnt of the jailbreak.

  18. UK – [ Muslim ] Luton cop ‘groomed’ children on Facebook

    A policeman with an obsessive interest in teenage girls ‘trawled’ Facebook for young victims to have sex with, a jury heard today.

    Mohammad Arshad, 35, groomed numerous underage girls over the Internet, cruised around Luton with them in his black Mercedes and persuaded to have sexual activity with him, it was alleged.

    He persistently pestered them for sex and raped one 14 year old one on the back seat of his car, St Albans Crown Court was told.

    Arshad, who called himself Waz, is said to have contacted schoolgirls over Facebook, Blackberry Messenger, WhatsAp or mobile phones and texts.

    Prosecutor James Newton-Price told a jury: “ He flattered girls and complimented them and sent sexually suggestive messages.

    “Some of the girls liked the attention and may have been flattered, but if they are under 16 it doesn’t matter.

    “Most refused his sexual advances. Some thought it was a joke. He persistently pestered girls for sex or some sort of touching or groping.”

    Mr Newton-Price said the youngest of the girls was 13, nearly 14. Arshad sent her a picture of his penis. Another 14 year old, who was allegedly raped in the back of his car, had never had sex before.

    He said the girls were very impressionable and at a vulnerable age.

    It was also alleged that Arshad paid one 16 year old girl for sex – some that was illegal as she was aged under 18.

    The prosecutor said the police officer would have known they were under age, as most were still at secondary school. It would have been obvious they’d have been under 16 or there would have been a high risk of it, he said.

    The prosecutor went on: “He was more aware of the letter of the law than most people because he had a responsible position in the community.

    “At the time he was seeking sexual contact with under age teenage girls, he was also a Police Constable with Bedfordshire police. “

    Mr Newton-Price said Arshad applied to join the force in 2013 and was interviewed in April 2014, becoming a probationer. “He didn’t last long because these matters came to the attention of other police officers by October 2014. He was suspended from duty and remains so,” said the prosecutor.

    The court was told that when his home was searched, images of teenage girls were found on his Blackberry phone. 188 more images of teenage girls were also on his computers. “We say the images are clear evidence of an obsessive interest in teenage girls,” said Mr Newton-Price.

    He told the jury that Arshad contacted and arranged to meet numerous teenage girls. 12 of the 13 girls were aged under 16 and too young to consent to sexual activity with an adult.

    Arshad, of Ferndale Road, Luton, denies 22 charges. 11 are causing a child to engage in sexual activity, 3 of sexual activity with a child, 4 of meeting a child following sexual grooming, one of rape, supplying cannabis, causing a child to watch a sexual act and paying for the sexual services of a child.

    The charges relate to 13 alleged victims who were aged between 13 and 16 at the time. The charges cover a period between October 2012 until December 2014.

    When questioned by the police, he gave a prepared statement saying he thought the girls were aged 16 or over.

    The trial is expected to last 3 weeks

    Case proceeding

  19. Turkey summons US ambassador over Syrian Kurdish forces spat

    Turkey has summoned the US ambassador to “convey unease” a day after the US State Department spokesman said that, unlike Turkey, Washington doesn’t recognize Syrian Kurdish forces as “terrorists.”

    The issue has strained ties between the two allies and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan even called on Washington to choose between Turkey and the Kurdish Democratic Union Party, or PYD, as its partner.

    A Foreign Ministry official said Ambassador John Bass was called to the ministry on Tuesday where a senior Turkish official expressed Ankara’s concerns. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because she wasn’t authorized to make public statements.

    U.S. State Department spokesman John Kirby said Monday: “We don’t, as you know, recognize the PYD as a terrorist organization. We recognize that the Turks do.”

  20. Serbia: Austria to send army to Macedonia-Greece border – FM Kurz

    Austria police and army officers are likely to be sent to the Macedonia-Serbia border, according to Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz who was speaking during a joint press conference with his Serbian counterpart Ivica Dacic in Belgrade, Tuesday.

    SOT, Sebastian Kurz, Austrian Foreign Affairs Minister (German): “Most probably, we will send Austrian police and [the] army to the Macedonian border and we’ll try to help that way. This is not a measure taken instead of our national measures [in Austria], but something additional.”

    SOT, Ivica Dacic, Serbian Foreign Minister (Serbian): “If others close their borders than Serbia will be forced to do the same with our border with Macedonia.”

    • Serbia: Austria will accept no more than 37,500 refugees in 2016 – FM Kurz

      Austria will limit the number of refugees entering the country to 37,500 people for the 2016, said Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz during a presser with Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic in Belgrade, Tuesday.

      SOT, Sebastian Kurz, Austrian Foreign Affairs Minister (German): “Last year we accepted 90,000 people which is enormous number and we cannot accept again in 2016 that amount of people. That is the reason why our government has to make an upper limit, clear limit line of 37,500 people who can be accepted but no more than that”

      SOT, Aleksandar Vucic, Serbian Prime Minister (Serbian): “Serbia will not erect walls and fences but Serbia will know how to protect its border. I don’t think solution is in building walls. I thought that two years ago, last year, and I think same today but Serbia has powerful defend and army forces and [Serbia] will always be ready and capable of protecting and defending its border and its people.”

    • Macedonia: Pres. Ivanov inspects new razor wire fence at Greek-Macedonian border

      Macedonian authorities erected a new razor wire fence along the Greek-Macedonian frontier near Bogorodica, Tuesday, with Macedonian President Gjorge Ivanov coming to inspect the site. The precaution comes following news that a new wave of refugees are expected to arrive in the region.

      Ivanov visited the site as Macedonian troops swiftly assembled the fence which will run parallel to the existing fence which was implemented in November 2015.

      Local media reported that the new fortification will be five metres (16.5 feet) behind the old one, and run 37 kilometres long (23 miles).

    • Are we seeing the beginnings of the rebirth of the Austrian Empire?

      If they are sending their Army to that border they are signaling that they are willing to fight and die for that section of Europe. This could turn into a very nasty surprise for a lot of people, and that could include Merkel.

  21. USA – Naked Muslim Grabbed Teenage Girl in Woodbridge, Police Say

    A naked man allegedly knocked down and grabbed a 16-year-old girl Wednesday in Woodbridge, Virginia, police said.

    The girl was walking to a bus stop about 6:15 a.m. when Musab Mohamed El-Sheikh approached her while naked and chased and tackled her after she tried to run away from him, authorities said.

    A neighbor said she heard a woman screaming and called 911.

    Tom Wardwell, who was walking his dog, also was knocked to the ground, Prince William County Police said.

    “I heard the kid screaming, ‘Help me, help me,’ and I though maybe she was yelling at friends coming up the street,” Wardwell said. “I turned around and got plowed in to. Both of us got knocked over by some crazy naked man, and I tried pushing him off and tried to get him to go away.”

    At least two other men rushed outside to help, but El-Sheikh kept hold of the girl until police arrived, Northern Virginia Bureau Chief Julie Carey reported.

    Officers took El-Sheikh, 37, to a hospital for a 72-hour mental health evaluation. Then he will be booked into an adult detention center, and a judge will rule on whether he should be held longer or given bond.

    No one was injured in the altercation.

    A man who confirmed he is El-Sheikh’s declined to answer questions.

    The victim’s parents said she is doing as well as can be expected. They said they always told her to run, fight, bite and scream if she was attacked, and that worked Wednesday.

    El-Sheikh is facing charges of abduction, indecent exposure, and assault and battery, police said.

    The incident happened in the 4700 block of Charter Court, about a block from El-Sheikh’s home. He had recently moved into the neighborhood.

    The victim is a student at a local high school. Her school district sent a letter home to parents of students in all grades.

  22. IRAN – Whispering of the anthem of the Islamic Republic of Iran by Leader of the Islamic Revolution.

    Meeting of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army [Air Force] commanders and staff. 8/2/2016

  23. US bishops launch ‘crucial conversations’ between Catholics and Muslims to counter Islamophobia

    A new initiative will encourage “crucial conversations” between Catholics and Muslims in America.

    The US Conference of Catholic Bishops announced on Monday the launch of a new national Catholic-Muslim dialogue group to combat the climate of fear surrounding Islam.

    “As the national conversation around Islam grows increasingly fraught, coarse and driven by fear and often willful misinformation, the Catholic Church must help to model real dialogue and good will,” Bishop Mitchell Rozanski of Springfield, Massachusetts, said in a statement.

    The bishops’ ecumenical and interreligious committee has co-sponsored three regional Catholic-Muslim dialogues in the last 20 years, but this is the first national initiative.

    “Our current dialogues have advanced the goals of greater understanding, mutual esteem and collaboration between Muslims and Catholics, and the members have established lasting ties of friendship and a deep sense of trust,” Rozanski said.

    The national dialogue will work alongside, not instead of, regional Catholic-Muslim dialogues. They are currently operating in the Mid-Atlantic, Midwest and West Coast and each is co-chaired by a bishop and a Muslim leader from the region.

    The “crucial conversation” at a national level will be headed up by Archbishop Blase Cupich of the Diocese of Chicago, Rozanski said. The Muslim co-chair is yet to be announced.

  24. Millions of UK pensioners suffering from STARVATION because of poor diets and lack of help (express, Feb 9, 2016)

    “MORE than one million UK pensioners could be suffering from starvation because of poor diets or a lack of someone to help with shopping and cooking, health experts warned.

    And with Britain’s chaotic social care system under intense pressure, numbers are set to increase unless more is done to improve the diets of the vulnerable.

    The elderly are particularly at risk with 1.3m failing to eat food containing the right amount of nutrients, said the Malnutrition Task Force.

    Dot Gibson, National Pensioners Convention general secretary, said: “Every year, malnutrition among Britain’s pensioners costs the NHS a staggering £13bn.

    “Much of it is as a result of cuts to meals on wheels. Over the last five years these have been reduced from 300,000 to just 109,000 and at the same time, the average price of a meal has increased by 22 per cent.

    “Many local authorities think the answer is to give older people a list of takeaways, but these services are a real lifeline to millions of older people up and down the country.

    “Preventative help, like ensuring people can eat decent food is a basic requirement of any social care system – but ours is under such fi nancial pressure that some older people are simply being left to starve.”

    Malnutrition is associated with long-term conditions such as cancer, dementia and swallowing problems as well as physical disability and social factors which can affect people in later life, such as bereavement and loneliness.

    A Department of Health spokesperson said: “An increase in cases of malnutrition being reported in recent years is in part due to much better diagnosis and detection.

    “We have provided £500,000 funding to Age UK to reduce malnutrition among older people through the Malnutrition Taskforce.””

  25. 17 Daesh militants killed in air strike, clash with security forces in Nangarhar (khaama, Feb 9, 2016)

    “17 fighters of the terrorist group of the Islamic State (IS) which also goes by its Arabic name Daesh have been killed in an air strike and clash with security forces in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan.

    Officials say Daesh fighters were busy in armed activities when they came under an air strike in Bazaar of Achin District on Monday.

    The air strike left 11 militants killed and two others wounded.

    The following night, security forces killed at least six militants of the group in a clash in the jurisdiction of Rodat District.

    Colonel Hazrat Hussain Mashriqiwal said dead bodies of the militants killed were left in the battlefield.

    According to Col. Mashriqiwal, one insurgent was also captured alive.

    Security forces and civilians have not received harm in the air strike or the gun battle.”

  26. Taliban shadow district governor among 10 killed in Nangarhar (khaama, Feb 9, 2016)

    “A shadow district governor of Taliban has been killed along with nine of his companions in eastern Nangarhar province.

    Officials say Rustam Haqyar was killed in joint security operation of police, army and personnel from the National Directorate of Security (NDS) in Rodat District.

    The other nine militants killed include Gul Mohammad, a commander of the group, who was wearing a suicide vest for carrying out a suicide attack.

    The operation launched in Triley and Baro areas in the morning and ended in the afternoon on Tuesday.

    Security forces captured a fighter of the group alive and confiscated several weapons and ammunition during the operation.

    Taliban confirm losing four fighters in a clash with security forces in Rodat District last night but claim more casualties to security forces.”

  27. Foreign guesthouses possible target of attack in Kabul, U.S. Embassy warns (khaama, Feb 9, 2016)

    “The Embassy of the United States in Kabul has issued a security alert regarding a possible attack on foreign guesthouses in capital Kabul.

    “The U.S. Embassy in Kabul has received reports that as of early February 2016, unidentified insurgents are planning to attack unidentified foreign guesthouses in Kabul City, possibly near the Qala-e Fatullah neighborhood,” a statement b U.S. Embassy said.

    The attack could also occur near Ansari or Haji Yaqub roundabouts in Kabul City, the statement said, adding that there is no further information regarding the timing, target, location, or method of any planned attack.

    The security alert by the U.S. Embassy in Kabul comes amid deteriorating security situation across the country, including capital Kabul…”

  28. UK failed to spot ISIS rise and will be ‘caught off guard’ by next threat, warns MoD boss (express, Feb 9, 2016)

    “DEFENCE chiefs failed to spot the rise of Islamic State (ISIS) or predict the ensuing collapse of Syria and are now at risk of failing to spot the next big threat to the UK, the man in charge of British military intelligence has warned.

    Speaking as the humanitarian situation in the Middle East continues to spiral out of control, Air Marshal Philip Osborn said Britain faced an increasingly uncertain future with threats from Islamic extremism, Russia, a global health pandemic and cyber warfare.

    The Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Chief of Defence intelligence told an audience of military experts in London that the UK “tended to underplay” both the scale and intensity of Islamic extremism, and the “risk appetite” from Russia to engage in provocative acts.

    In a stark warning about the potential for threats to emerge undetected, he said: “We are more likely than not going to be surprised at some point.”…”

    • The next threat is the fighters both the Sunni jihad groups and the Shia jihad groups have managed to implant in the west, and the ones that have infiltrated into our governments. He knows this as well as I do.

  29. Schools: France vows to fight terror conspiracy theories (thelocal, Feb 9, 2016)

    “The French government aims to crack down on the spreading of conspiracy theories in France’s schools surrounding the recent terror attacks, because they are giving fuel to those seeking to radicalize young people.

    There have been conspiracy theories for as long as anyone remembered. Did Kennedy really die? Was there ever a man on the moon? Was September 11th an inside job?

    And now that massive terror-related news stories have struck France – and hard – a whole host of conspiracies have cropped up among kids eager to share the latest snippet from the internet.

    And they are proving to be a growing concern for the French government desperately trying to battle radicalization among young people, who have a tendency not to believe the official version of the story.

    Education Minister Najat Vallaud-Belkacem (pictured below) spent Tuesday hosting a conference on the topic of fighting the spread of conspiracies at schools.

    The all-day conference, held at the National Museum of Natural History in Paris, saw around 300 people in attendance, including students, teachers, psychologists and lawyers.

    The aim is to start a discussion about the dangers of conspiracy theories, especially after terror attacks set tongues wagging in French school yards over the past year.

    One group of 16-year-olds told the BFM TV channel that there was something “fishy”, for example, about the death of the policeman during last January’s terror attacks.

    “You can’t see any blood in the video,” said a boy called Julien. “He gets a bullet through the head but there’s no blood – only dust?”

    Other popular conspiracy theories include:

    That the knife-wielding man killed by police last month in northern Paris had a knife and an Isis flag planted on him by police.

    That the getaway car used by the Kouachi brothers in the Charlie Hebdo attack was not the same one recovered later by police.

    That a passport found at the Bataclan concert hall after terrorists killed 90 people in November had links to documents found at ground zero in New York after September 11th.

    And it’s exactly these kinds of rumours the government wants to crack down on, fearing that pupils take the conspiracies seriously because they’re easy to find online.

    Rudy Reichstadt, who started the French site “Conspiracy Watch”, said that theories are spreading far quicker than ever before.

    “Teenagers have always been fascinated by the mysteries. But before, they’d have to go out and buy a book about it,” told Le Figaro newspaper:

    A key problem is that many conspiracy sites online don’t actively advertise that they’re just speculations, meaning young people are more likely to believe that what they’re reading is true and isn’t just a theory, he added.

    Tuesday’s conference will focus on how to get students to think twice before believing and indeed sharing such rumours.

    And in a bid to engage the young audience, officials have launched a website with more information called “We’re manipulating you” (On te manipule) and set up a SnapChat account, broadcasting video snippets on the topic to anyone who wants to watch.

    “Together we will build a suitable response, which will break the students’ fascination with conspiracy theories and which will be based on the long-time strengths of schooling: rigour, reflection, thought and knowledge,” she said.”

  30. UAE creates ministers for happiness and tolerance (BBC, Feb 9, 2016)

    “The prime minister of the United Arab Emirates has announced the creation of a minister of state for happiness, as part of a major government shake-up.

    Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who is also the ruler of Dubai, said the minister would drive policy “to create social good and satisfaction”.

    A new post of minister of state for tolerance was also created.

    Sheikh Mohammed said several ministries would also be merged and unveiled plans to outsource most government services.

    “Governments must be flexible. We don’t need more ministries, but more ministers capable of dealing with change,” he said at the World Government Summit in Dubai on Monday.

    “We want a young and flexible government that will fulfil our youth’s aspirations and achieve our people’s ambitions.”

    The minister of state for tolerance would promote the virtue “as a fundamental value in UAE society”, Sheikh Mohammed tweeted.

    The prime minister also announced the creation of a UAE Youth National Council.

    The “elite group of young men and women” would advise the government on youth issues and be led by a female minister of state for youth no older than 22, he said, adding: “The energy of youth will fuel our government in future.””

  31. Indonesia imprisons seven Islamic State supporters (BBC, Feb 9, 2016)

    “A court in Indonesia has sentenced seven men to between three and five years in jail for supporting the so-called Islamic State (IS) group.

    It is the first time an Indonesian court has passed jail sentences for recruiting and helping people travel to Syria to fight alongside IS….”

  32. Poles held over Sweden asylum centre attack plot (BBC, Feb 9, 2016)

    “Fourteen Polish far-right activists have been arrested in Sweden on suspicion of planning to attack asylum seekers with axes, iron pipes and knives, police say.

    They were detained on Monday after police said they received a tip-off.

    The group was thought to have targeted an asylum centre in Nynashamn, about 60km (37 miles) south of Stockholm.

    Some 163,000 people applied for asylum in Sweden in 2015, the highest number in Europe by population size.

    Sweden opened its doors to Syrian refugees in 2013, but decided last November to tighten its borders because it said the numbers of migrants and refugees arriving was “unsustainable”.

    The 14 Poles were detained on Monday evening in raids on cars in the Nynashamn area, police said, a short distance from an asylum centre.

    Aged between 20 and 35, some live in Sweden permanently while others are only visiting the country, according to Swedish reports.

    “They are Polish citizens, and seem to be part of the far-right scene. Three of them were involved in a demonstration against refugees two weeks ago and were arrested for assaulting someone,” southern Stockholm police spokesman Lars Alvarsjo told Radio Sweden.

    The suspects were thought to have discussed the attack on Facebook.

    Swedish Television reported that they may have planned the attack in retaliation for a previous dispute on a commuter train…”

  33. Norway Investigates Child Abuse at Asylum-Seekers’ Centers (abcnews, Feb 9, 2016)

    “Norwegian police said Tuesday that they are investigating several cases of sex offenders allegedly abusing children at asylum-seekers’ reception centers in the country. Swedish police, meanwhile, arrested more than a dozen people suspected of planning an attack on a refugee center.

    In Norway, the abuse was reported to authorities during the autumn and winter, Axel Wilhelm Due from the National Criminal Investigation Services told The Associated Press without providing figures or details except to say that there were “several” cases.

    The incidents included abuse by known sex offenders visiting the reception centers as well as residents of the centers, Due said, adding that police were reviewing every alleged case.

    “We are looking very seriously at every individual case, and based on our information it’s very likely that children living in reception centers in Norway have been and are being subjected to sexual abuse,” he said. “But generally there is low criminal activity in and around the reception centers.”

    Due said that police wouldn’t provide details about the alleged cases at this stage…”

  34. TURKEY -We’ll send in the warships, says Nato: Vessels set to patrol the Aegean Sea in attempt to stop migrants crossing

    German chancellor called allies to send vessels to patrol the Turkish coast
    Defence ministers are considering military action to stop people smugglers
    Decision could be seen as admission that EU has failed to tackle the influx
    Downing Street refused to comment on whether British vessels are sent

    Warships will be deployed to stop migrants crossing the Aegean Sea to Europe, under a plan to be discussed by Nato defence chiefs today.

    German chancellor Angela Merkel last night called on allies to send vessels to patrol the Turkish coast in a dramatic escalation of the response to the crisis.

    Today at a meeting in Brussels, defence ministers will consider the request – supported by Turkey – for military action aimed at preventing people-smuggling gangs sending boatloads to Greek islands.


    More asylum seekers could be housed in prosperous parts of the country to ease the burden on poorer areas.

    Immigration minister James Brokenshire said the Home Office was looking at ‘expanding’ a programme which ensures refugees are evenly dispersed.

    The move follows criticism from council chiefs in deprived areas that the housing scheme in place since 1999 is ‘dumping the poor on the poor’.

    Officials are in talks with more councils to accept asylum seekers after it emerged some three-quarters had refused.

    Under the scheme, councils sign up voluntarily to ensure the housing of refugees is shared around the nation. But it has fuelled anger after it emerged wealthier communities appeared not to be taking their fair share.

    In June last year, Middlesbrough had 746 refugees – one in 43 of all those in Britain. Meanwhile West Oxfordshire, which covers Prime Minister David Cameron’s Witney constituency, failed to take a single one.

    Yesterday Mr Brokenshire told the home affairs select committee: ‘We are looking to expand the number of local authorities involved in these dispersal areas.’


    British ships could be used as part of NATO plan to stem flow of migrants into Europe

    Plan to send a naval mission into the Mediterranean will be discussed at meeting of defence chiefs in Brussels later today

    NATO will consider a plan to send a naval mission into the Mediterranean to police Turkey’s border with Greece.

    The controversial mission proposed by Germany and Turkey could see British ships used as part of a 28-nation effort to stem the flow of migrants into Europe.

    It will be discussed at a meeting of defence chiefs in Brussels later today.

    “We will take very seriously a request from Turkey and other allies to look into what NATO can do to help them cope with and deal with the crisis,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said.

    It comes as Labour’s former shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper warns the migrant crisis is set to get even worse this year.

    In a speech in London she will say Europe’s border-free Schengen system must be abandoned and that Britain must do more to help Syrian refugees .

    “Thousands more families are defying the winter waves to cross the Aegean Sea,” she will say.

    “Over 30 times more smugglers’ boats have arrived this winter than last. Teachers, lawyers, car mechanics, business people, students, children, toddlers are drowning off Europe’s shores.”

    And she will echo warnings from David Cameron that leaving the EU would only make the situation worse for Britain.

    “Brexit wont magic away the refugee crisis, or keep it further from our shores. Quite the opposite,” the former Labour leadership hopeful will say.

    “Refugees who have family in Britain will keep trying to come here, whether we are in the EU or out.

    “We would lose vital cooperation on security that helps stop criminal gangs and terrorists exploiting the crisis.”

    • It will slow down the flood but not by much, and it will place the few warships the Europeans have in places where terror groups can attack them.

      The following British movie about WWII sticks close to the facts of what happened. this is what can happen again by a determined foe.

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