Reader’s links for March 5 – 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.

This way, under the various posts of the day, conversation can take place without as much ‘noise’ on the various links and articles and ideas in the main posts and all the news links being submitted can be seen under these auto-posts by clicking on the comments-link right below these ones.

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

88 Replies to “Reader’s links for March 5 – 2016”

  1. Three Kurdish terror suspects can not be extradited from Britain because they might be mistreated in an Italian jail

    Awat Wahab Hamasalih, 34, Bakr Hamad, 39, Zana Rahim, 32, were arrested

    Men were held as part of Europe-wide probe into jihadi network Rawti-Shax

    Hate preacher Mullah Krekar, 60, controlled it from behind bars in Norway

    Trio aimed to kidnap dignitaries, including a British ambassador, to barter for Krekar’s release

  2. Migrant attacks and a conspiracy to hide the truth in Europe’s most liberal country: How Sweden has stopped its citizens discussing the refugee influx

    Stockholm train station is where a ‘group of neo-Nazis attacked refugees’

    Around the same time as woman, 22, was allegedly murdered by migrant

    Despite reports no migrants have told police they were assaulted at station

    If exaggerated, it could have made Swedes less ready to voice their worries

  3. Report: UK Business Group Boss Suspended for Anti-EU Stance (abcnews, Mar 5, 2016)

    “The Financial Times newspaper says the head of the British Chambers of Commerce has been suspended after saying the U.K. should leave the European Union.

    Director-general John Longworth told the organization’s convention this week that Britain faced a choice between “the devil and the deep blue sea.” He told Sky News that “the U.K. would be better off taking a decision to leave” the EU.

    The group, which represents hundreds of businesses, says it will not campaign on either side in Britain’s EU membership referendum. A majority of its member businesses supported staying in the bloc when surveyed last year.

    The FT said Longworth had been temporarily suspended for violating the group’s neutral stance.

    The British Chambers of Commerce did not immediately respond to a call seeking comment Saturday.”

  4. Migrant crisis: Greece ‘overwhelmed’ by arrivals (BBC, Mar 5, 2016)

    “Europe’s most senior official for migration has told the BBC that Greece is “overwhelmed” by new arrivals and that the whole world must react.

    At least 2,000 new migrants are registered in Greece every day.

    But more than 10,000 are stranded on the northern border with Macedonia, as EU countries have re-imposed internal border controls.

    Dimitris Avromopoulos, the European Commissioner for Migration, said other states needed to support Greece.

    “Greece is overrun, is overwhelmed by all these flows,” Mr Avromopoulos, who is Greek, told the BBC.

    “We have to mobilise the whole European Union…we must see this situation as a global issue rather than a regional one.”

    Earlier this week, EU officials announced an aid plan that would allocate €300m (£233m; $325m) this year to help any EU state deal with the migration crisis. In all, €700m would be made available over three years…”

  5. Inside ‘Islamic State’: A Raqqa diary (BBC, Mar 5, 2016)

    “In areas controlled by the group that calls itself Islamic State the penalty for speaking to the Western media is death by beheading, so it took courage and conviction for Mohammed to compile this diary of life in Raqqa, the capital of IS’s self-proclaimed caliphate.

    Having seen friends and relatives butchered, his community’s life shattered and the local economy ruined by these notorious extremists, Mohammed (not his real name) believes he’s fighting back by telling the BBC what is happening to his beloved city.

    1. The day IS first entered my beloved city

    Mohammed finds his father dead and mother badly injured following an air strike. After expressing his anger about beheadings in the streets, he is sentenced to 40 lashes….”

  6. Afghan Taliban Say They Will Not Participate in Talks (abcnews, Mar 5, 2016)

    “The Afghan Taliban say they will not participate in a peace process with Kabul’s government until foreign forces in Afghanistan stop attacking their positions and leave the country.

    In a statement Saturday, a Taliban spokesman says the insurgents “reject” peace talks between representatives of the Taliban and Afghan authorities.

    Direct face-to-face talks were expected to take place in the Pakistani capital Islamabad next week. Afghan officials have characterized the meeting as the first real step in a peace process aimed at ending the war, now in its 15th year.

    The Taliban statement, however, says the insurgents will not take part.

    It accuses the U.S. of boosting troop numbers, carrying out air strikes and night raids on residential compounds. It also says Kabul’s forces have escalated their fight against the insurgents.”

  7. Syria Rebels Take Border Crossing From IS (abcnews, Mar 5, 2016)

    “A Free Syrian Army faction seized control of the Syrian side of a major Syria-Iraq border crossing from the Islamic State group Friday night, as IS fighters engaged government forces in the center of the country, killing at least 15 soldiers.

    The Local Coordination Committees’ network of opposition activists in Syria reported Saturday that fighters belonging to the FSA Southern Front and reportedly supported by the United States killed one IS fighter and injured several others in the process of taking the Tanaf border crossing.

    According to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the FSA fighters crossed into Syria from Jordan to launch the attack.

    The IS-affiliated Aamaq News Agency denied the reports. The IS group had controlled the crossing, located in Homs province in southeast Syria, since government forces withdrew in May 2015.

    IS fighters meanwhile attacked the government’s supply route to the contested northern city of Aleppo killing between 15 and 20 soldiers, according to various reports. Government forces repelled the attack and secured the road, according to the Observatory and SANA, the Syrian state news agency.

    SANA reported government forces killed dozens of IS fighters in the clashes.”

  8. Saudi foreign minister says Assad should leave sooner, not later (reuters, Mar 5, 2016)

    “Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said on Saturday that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad must leave at the beginning of a political transition, not at the end.

    “For us it is very clear it’s at the beginning of the process, not at the end of the process, it’s not going to be 18 months,” Jubeir said during a visit to France.

    His comments came days before the United Nations plans to reconvene peace talks to try to end the five-year-old civil war in Syria.

    The United States and other Western governments that were previously calling for Assad’s early departure have quietly backed away from that demand as his position has been strengthened by Russia’s military involvement in Syria since last September.

    Jubeir also said Saudi Arabia will take delivery of French arms it originally ordered for Lebanon….”

  9. EU needs to boost refugee funds to Turkey beyond current pledges: German EU Commissioner (reuters, Mar 5, 2016)

    “The European Union may need to more than double financial aid already pledged to Turkey to help it keep millions of Syrian refugees on its soil, Germany’s European Union Commissioner Guenther Oettinger was quoted as saying on Saturday.

    The European Commission on Friday announced the first payouts from a 3 billion euro ($3.3 billion) fund to help Turkey pay for the needs of some 2.5 million refugees.

    “Europe should hold out the prospect of further financial support to Turkey also beyond 2017,” Oettinger told German magazine Der Spiegel.

    “Taking over full costs of the services that Turkey is providing by accommodating and caring for the refugees, the bill could easily add up to six or seven billion euros per year,” said Oettinger, a senior member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s center-right party Christian Democratic Union (CDU).

    Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann proposed a new EU fund to finance the additional costs. “In the migrant crisis, we need joint European solutions,” Faymann told the magazine.

    “Therefore I suggest a fund in which each EU member state pays in, similar to the bank bailout. The money should be used to cover the costs of providing for the asylum seekers.”

    European Council President Donald Tusk, who on Friday held talks with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, will chair an emergency EU summit with Turkey on Monday aimed at strengthening cooperation to stem the flow of migrants to Europe.”

    • They should position gunboats in the international waters just beyond The Turk. Ask Australia how they’re managing their coastal integrity.

      • Since this would work it will not be tried, of course with Russia and Iran getting ready to carve up Turkey it won’t be needed in the near future.

  10. West Africa’s Sahel nations to set up anti-Islamist units (reuters, Mar 5, 2016)

    “N’DJAMENA Defense ministers from West Africa’s arid Sahel region have agreed to work together to establish special rapid reaction forces to counter the growing threat from al Qaeda and Islamic State-linked militants.

    With its vast, loosely controlled desert expanses on the edge of the Sahara and its porous borders, the Sahel has proved to be fertile soil for the expansion of Islamist militancy in one of the world’s poorest regions.

    At a meeting in Chad’s capital N’Djamena, defense chiefs from Chad, Niger, Burkina Faso, Mali and Mauritania — the so-called G5 Sahel countries — pledged to form special units to respond quickly to threats and attacks from Islamist militants.

    “These groups, each composed of around 100 well-trained and very mobile men, will deploy in zones where the terrorists operate,” the G5 Sahel’s permanent secretary Najim Elhadj Mohamed said following the meeting late on Friday.

    He said the units, tailored after Spanish forces used against the Basque separatist group ETA, would receive training and support from both Spain and France….”

  11. Pope Shocked by Murderous Attack in Yemen That Killed 4 Nuns (abcnews, Mar 5, 2016)

    “The Vatican says Pope Francis was “shocked and profoundly saddened” by a murderous attack at a home for the elderly in southern Yemen that killed 16 people, including four nuns.

    The Vatican secretary of state said in a condolence message on Saturday that the pontiff “prays that this pointless slaughter will awaken consciences, lead to a change of heart, and inspire all parties to lay down their arms.”

    Officials and witnesses in Yemen said gunmen on Friday stormed a retirement home run by a charity established by Mother Teresa, moving room to room handcuffing the victims before shooting them in the head.

    The pope sent prayers for the dead and expressed his spiritual closeness to those affected by this “this act of senseless and diabolical violence.””

  12. Mali Officials Ask for Air Support to Combat Jihadis (abcnews, Mar 5, 2016)

    “Malian officials have asked for air support from visiting members of the United Nations Security Council to help dislodge jihadis in the central Mopti region.

    The manager for the Mopti governor’s office, Boukari Koita, said Saturday that local officials made the request during the visit by 15 members of the U.N. Security Council ahead of a June vote on extending the mandate of the U.N. mission in Mali. The members will next visit the northern city of Timbuktu.

    Mali’s north and central regions are sites of instability.

    The Mopti region is known to be a stronghold for the Macina Liberation Front, an Islamic extremist group that claimed responsibility for several attacks on the army last year.”

  13. EU Pressured to Take Stance Over Turkish Media Right Erosion (abcnews, Mar 5, 2016)

    “The European Union is facing increasing pressure to speak out against the erosion of media freedom in Turkey following the forced take-over of the country’s largest-circulation newspaper, but few expect it to take a bold stance toward Ankara while trying to assure its help in dealing with the migration crisis.

    Police used tear gas and water cannons late Friday to storm the headquarters of the Zaman newspaper and enforce the court-ordered seizure of the publication, which is linked to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s top foe, U.S.-based opposition cleric Fethullah Gulen.

    On Saturday, hundreds of the paper’s supporters staged a second-day of protests outside the building, now surrounded by police fences. They chanted “free press cannot be silenced” and “Zaman cannot be silenced” as riot police used shields and tear gas to push the crowd, sending protesters running into side streets for protection. Some were seen rubbing their faces with pieces of lemon to mitigate the effect of the tear gas, the private Dogan news agency reported. A number of protesters were hurt, the agency added.

    The Istanbul court’s appointment of trustees to manage Zaman and its sister outlets further reduced the number of opposition media organizations in Turkey, which is dominated by pro-government news outlets and where censorship is rife. It raised alarm bells over the deterioration of rights conditions in the NATO member nation, which also aspires for EU membership, just days before a March 7 meeting, in which EU leaders will try to convince Turkey to do more to curtail the flow of migrants traveling to Europe.

    “The EU countries are preoccupied with their migration crisis, they are no longer concerned by rights violations in Turkey,” said Semih Idiz, columnist for the opposition Cumhuriyet and independent Daily Hurriyet newspapers. “They’ll say a few things as a matter of form, but they know they are dependent on Turkey.”

    The Saturday edition of English-language Today’s Zaman, published before the forced take-over, printed its entire front page in black with the headline: “Shameful day for free press in Turkey.”

    Zaman’s seizure, which sparked outrage from international rights advocacy groups, was part of an intensified crackdown on Gulen’s movement, which the government claims is attempting to topple it. Authorities accuse the movement’s followers of infiltrating police and the judiciary and of orchestrating corruption allegations in 2013 that implicated Erdogan’s inner circle.

    Gulen, who has lived in self-imposed exile in the United States since 1999, was once Erdogan’s ally. Over the past years, the government has purged civil servants allegedly linked to the movement and seized businesses affiliated to it. The movement has also been branded a terror organization although it is not known to have carried out any acts of violence.

    Rights advocacy groups accuse EU nations of keeping mute about deteriorating freedoms and human rights abuses in Turkey — including the large civilian death toll during military operations against Kurdish militants — because of the country’s crucial role in curtailing the flow of migrants to Europe.

    During a visit to Turkey this week European Council President Donald Tusk spoke of the “good and growing cooperation” between Turkey and the EU.

    “The European Union and the United States, as Turkey’s partners and allies, should not trade Turkey’s support on migration and Syria for silence over the dismantling of democratic institutions,” said Daniel Calingaert, executive vice president of the U.S.-based watchdog, Freedom House, following Zaman’s take-over.

    The European Federation of Journalists said: “The European Union cannot remain silent to the political seizure of Zaman newspaper, Today’s Zaman daily and Cihan news agency.””

    • Turkey: Police barricade Zaman offices to prevent further demos

      Turkish police began erecting fences around the Zaman headquarters in Istanbul, Saturday, the morning after using water cannon and tear gas on protesters who had gathered outside the building. Police are anticipating further demonstrations today so have taken steps, including deploying additional water cannon trucks and personnel, in a bid to prevent them from taking place.

      Demonstrations began in front of Zaman’s headquarters on Friday after the Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office requested a trustee panel be appointed to the media group. Reports indicate that the prosecutor’s order also involves forcing the company into administration.

    • Turkey: Police fire tear gas on peaceful protesters outside Zaman HQ

      Protesters who were demonstrating around the Zaman headquarters in Istanbul were dispersed after riot police fired tear gas at them, Saturday. Police have intensified their efforts in removing the peaceful demonstration which has been rallying against the government’s takeover of the Zaman media group.

      Demonstrations began in front of Zaman’s headquarters on Friday after the Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office requested a trustee panel be appointed to the media group. Reports indicate that the prosecutor’s order also involves forcing the company into administration.

  14. How Fiduciary Rule May Censor Financial Broadcasters Like Dave Ramsey

    Popular financial radio show host Dave Ramsey caused a firestorm on Twitter last week when he weighed in against the “fiduciary rule”—the controversial pending Department of Labor regulation that would impose new restrictions on a vast swath of financial professionals who handle IRAs and 401(k) accounts. Yet, Ramsey was only echoing concerns about the costs of the rule already expressed by Members of Congress from both parties.

    Ramsey Tweeted, “this Obama rule will kill the Middle Class and below ability to access personal advice.” A war of Tweets then broke out between opponents of the rule, and supporters, the latter of which includes fee-based investment advisers expected to benefit from the new costs the rule will shower on their broker competitors.

    • A few facts to remember while reading this article:

      1) Fascists allow people to own property but regulate what they can do with this property, this includes your money.

      2) A wealthy middle class is necessary for nation to remain free.

      3) Actions speak louder then words, no matter how much they scream about being for the little people the policies of the left make the rich richer, the poor much poor and destroy the middle class.

      4) For the left to maintain power in the west they must make the vast majority of the people dependent on the government for their living.

      5) What turns on most politicians of all stripes but especially the ones on the left is power, they want the power to tell you want you are to do every minute of the day. This is why they get along with the Moslems so well.

  15. Outrageous! Public School Students Taught To ‘Pledge Allegiance To An International Flag’
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    Posted Friday, March 4th 2016 @ 12pm by Staff

    It is widely accepted that American public schools are controlled by liberals. It seems like every day, we see new examples of American schoolchildren being indoctrinated with left-wing ideas.

    This latest example was brought to our attention by a concerned parent.

    Kindergarten students from PS75, a public school in New York City, recently took part in a class project in which the children were made to create an American flag with the flags of other 22 other nations superimposed over the stripes. Below the flag read the words “We pledge allegiance to an International Flag.”

    The flag is being auctioned off as a way to raise funds for the Parent Teacher Association. According to the description offered on the auction site:

    The students made a beautifully painted stretched canvas American Flag and then applied flags from all the Spanish speaking countries onto the stripes of the American flag. All the children chose a flag to color using colored pencils and they were glued onto the larger American flag. The stars are cut canvas which are painted and decorated with REAL Swarovski Crystals (gold and crystal colored)!

    The fun quote on the bottom is about unity and creating an environment in which everyone is welcome! “We pledge allegiance to an International Flag!” Our dual language classroom strives to be a place that everyone feels welcome! (Emphasis added)

    Although the description claims that the flags are limited to “Spanish speaking countries”, the Russian flag is amongst those that are included.

    This is the type of globalist indoctrination we have come to expect from the public school system, but telling impressionably young American children that their loyalty should lie with some nebulous idea of a global community rather than their own nation is a new low.

    UPDATE: The auction site on which the flag was featured has taken down all images of the item as well as any description of it.

    Read more:

  16. Turkey Seizes Newspaper, Zaman, as Press Crackdown Continues

    ISTANBUL — Backed by a court order, the Turkish authorities moved on Friday to seize Zaman, the country’s most widely circulated newspaper, in the latest crackdown by the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on freedom of the press.
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    The seizing of the newspaper also highlighted the government’s building campaign against those it perceives to be its two greatest enemies: opposition journalists and the followers of Fethullah Gulen, a Muslim cleric affiliated with the newspaper who lives in exile in Pennsylvania. Mr. Gulen was once an ally of Mr. Erdogan’s but is now a bitter enemy.
    Continue reading the main story
    Related Coverage

    Turkey Cracks Down on Insults to President ErdoganMARCH 2, 2016
    Reporters’ Group Calls for Turkey to Release Syrian Citizen-JournalistFEB. 19, 2016
    E.U. Presses for Accord With Turkey to Ease Flow of MigrantsMARCH 4, 2016

    As news of the takeover became public Friday afternoon, supporters began gathering in front of the newspaper’s offices in Istanbul, and employees locked a door to the building. In a live-stream broadcast on the newspaper’s website, supporters were seen chanting, “Free press cannot be silenced.” Some carried Turkish flags and banners emblazoned with, “Do not touch my newspaper.” Columnists from the paper were also seen addressing the crowd.

    • Turkey police fire plastic bullets at anti-Erdogan newspaper rally

      Istanbul (AFP) – Turkish riot police on Saturday fired plastic bullets and tear gas to disperse protesters who gathered outside an opposition newspaper the day after it was seized by authorities in a violent raid.

      The swoop against the paper raised fresh concerns over declining media freedoms in Turkey, a key European Union ally, ahead of a visit by Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu to Brussels Monday for a crucial summit meeting with EU leaders.

      “Free press cannot be silenced,” a group of demonstrators including the paper’s readers shouted outside the Istanbul premises of Zaman daily, staunchly opposed to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

      Police used large amounts of tear gas, water cannon and plastic bullets to disperse around 500 people clapping in protest, an AFP photographer at the scene reported.

      Before midnight on Friday, police also stepped in by using tear gas and water cannon to move away a hundreds-strong crowd that had formed outside the newspaper following a court order placing the media business under administration.

  17. Scientists attempt to clone Ice Age LION CUBS after discovering ‘near-perfect’ 12,000-year-old remains in Siberia

    Scientists are attempting to clone extinct Ice Age lion cubs by finding DNA in the remains of the creatures.

    Two cubs were found in Russia’s Sakha Republic last August in a near-perfect state thanks to the deep-freeze conditions where they lay.

    Researchers hope to find living tissues containing DNA in the remains, which will allow them to recreate the now extinct Ice Age cave lion.

    The project is a joint venture by Russian and South Korean scientists at the Joint Foundation of Molecular Paleontology at North East Russia University in the city of Yakutsk.

    Semyon Grigoriev, who is involved in the lion cub project, is also working on cloning a mammoth using the same process.

  18. Philippines seizes North Korean cargo ship to enforce U.N. sanctions

    MANILA (Reuters) – The Philippines said on Saturday it had seized a North Korean freighter that was covered by harsher United Nations’ sanctions against Pyongyang over its nuclear program.

    Manila will also deport the vessel’s 21 North Korean crew and will await a U.N. inspection team from the United Nations, foreign ministry spokesman Charles Jose said in a text message.

    “In compliance with the United Nations resolution, the North Korean ship in Subic will be impounded and not allowed to leave port,” he said.

    The 6,830 deadweight tonne (dwt) cargo ship Jin Teng was one of the first sanctioned North Korean ships to enter a foreign port since the tightened sanctions were passed unanimously by the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday. Thirty-one North Korean ships are on the list.

    “The world is concerned over North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and as a member of the UN, the Philippines has to do its part to enforce the sanctions,” said Manolo Quezon, deputy presidential spokesman told reporters.

    The ship, flying a Sierra Leone flag, arrived on Feb. 27 and was unloading palm kernels.

  19. Merkel urges Greece to speed up efforts to shelter refugees

    BERLIN (Reuters) – Greece needs to deliver quickly on its promise to provide accommodation for 50,000 refugees and the European Union should help Athens with this task, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a media interview published on Saturday.

    Austria, one of the last stepping stones to Germany for hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants, recently imposed border restrictions, setting off a domino effect in Europe and leaving tens of thousands stranded in poor conditions in Greece.

    “Originally, Greece should have created 50,000 accommodation places for refugees by the end of 2015,” Merkel told German tabloid Bild am Sonntag.

    “The backlog must be resolved now at lightning speed because the Greek government has to guarantee decent accommodation.”

    Merkel, under pressure to reduce the number of new arrivals after more than one million migrants entered Germany last year, said Greece could count on more help from other EU states.

    “I know from my talks with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras that he wants to do this, but that he needs our help, and that’s why the EU must and will support Greece in solidarity.”

    She also said that Austria and Balkan countries were largely to blame for the changed situation in Greece by deciding unilaterally to impose borders controls.

    • Greece: Thousands remain strained at Idomeni refugee camp

      More than 13,000 refugees remain stranded at the Greek-Macedonian border at Idomeni refugee camp, as Macedonian authorities continue to allow only a fraction of those waiting to pass, Saturday.

      The refugee camp is holding seven times its maximum capacity while more refugees arrive at the border from Piraeus Port. Authorities and NGOs fear that viruses may spread amid of the poor living conditions at the camp.

    • Bulgaria: Troops deployed to Greek border to control refugee flow

      Bulgaria conducted military drills near the Kulata-Promachon checkpoint along the country’s border with Greece on Saturday.

      Dubbed ‘Border 2016’, the excercises were held across several towns along the southwestern border. Staged jointly by the military and police forces along with representaitves from the Red Cross, the drills aim to coordinate the activities of the Interior Ministry and the Ministry of Defense, in order to control the flow of refugees and migrants.

      Around 400 army officers who were deployed for the drills are to be stationed permanently at the border. On February 18, Bulgarian parliament passed a law that allows the army to assist in border protection against increased migration.

    • [ how strange ....not a single article about this in the French MSM ]

      FRANCE – Saudi Crown Prince is awarded Legion of Honor

      French President Francois Hollande awarded Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Naif, deputy premier and minister of interior, with the National Order of the Legion of Honor — the highest national award in France — due to his great efforts in the region and world for combating extremism and terrorism.

      French President Receives Crown Prince, Grants Him National Order of the Legion of Honour

      President Francois Hollande of the French Republic received here today Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior.

      Upon arrival at Elysee Palace in Paris, memorial pictures were taken on this occasion.

      The Crown Prince shook hands with the French senior officials. The French President also shook hands with the Crown Prince’s accompanying delegation.

      Following the audience, President Francois Hollande of the French Republic and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz held a session of official talks.

      At the outset of the session, the French President welcomed the Crown Prince, stressing importance of strong relations between the Kingdom and France.

      For his part, the Crown Prince conveyed greetings of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud to the French President. In turn, the French President sent his greetings to Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.

      During the session of talks, the two sides reviewed bilateral relations between the Kingdom and France and ways of enhancing and developing them in all fields, particularly joint cooperation for combating extremism and terrorism.

      The French President and the Crown Prince also discussed the latest developments in the Middle East and exerted efforts towards them in addition to the two countries’ stances towards them.

      Following the session of talks, the French President granted the Crown Prince the National Order of the Legion of Honour – the highest national award in France – due to his great efforts in the region and world for combating extremism and terrorism.

      The audience and session of talks were attended by Minister of State and Cabinet’s Member Dr. Essam bin Saad bin Said; Minister of Culture and Information Dr. Adel bin Zaid Al-Toraifi; Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir; Saudi Ambassador to the Republic of France Dr. Khalid bin Mohammed Al-Anqari; Chief of General Intelligence Khalid bin Ali Al-Humaidan; Adviser at the Royal Court Abdullah bin Abdulrahman Al-Muhaisin; Deputy Director General of General Investigation Lieutenant General Abdullah bin Ali Al-Qarni, and a number of French officials.?

      • SAUDI ARABIA – KSA to take French weapons in scrapped aid for Lebanon

        PARIS: Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said on Saturday that the kingdom will take delivery of French arms it originally ordered for Lebanon.

        “We made the decision that we will stop the $3 billion from going to the Lebanese military and instead they will be rediverted to the Saudi military,” Al-Jubeir told journalists during a visit in Paris.

        “So the contracts (with France) will be completed but the clients will be the Saudi military,” he said.

        Riyadh granted the aid package to boost Lebanon’s security amid rising threats from militants. But cancelled the aid in response to Beirut’s failure to condemn attacks on Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran.

        Saudi officials lamented that Beirut had been showing hostile acts, blaming the Iran-backed Hezbollah of maintaining a stranglehold on the government to pursue its agenda.

        Hezbollah militias had also been fighting with the regime of Syrian dictator Bashar Assad, along with their Iranian backers. Iran is being accused by Gulf states of fomenting sectarian unrest in the region by interfering in the internal affairs of other countries.

        Syria conflict

        Al-Jubeir on Friday also said that Assad must leave at the beginning of a political transition, not at the end.

        “For us it is very clear it’s at the beginning of the process, not at the end of the process, it’s not going to be 18 months,” he said.

        His comments came days before the United Nations plans to reconvene peace talks to try to end the five-year-old civil war in Syria.

        The United States and other Western governments that were previously calling for Assad’s early departure have quietly backed away from that demand as his position has been strengthened by Russia’s military involvement in Syria since last September.


          Tag-teaming with Russia and dumping regional allies and NATO, the White House tells the rest of the world to go take a hike

          Whether they support or oppose it, most observers converge on viewing President Barack Obama’s Syria policy as generally marked by passive detachment. After all, the president ignored the recommendations of many of his cabinet members and close advisers to arm Syrian rebels in 2012, or to enforce his “red line” against the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons to massacre civilians. Worried about being sucked into another Middle Eastern War—one that would pit the United States against one of Iran’s key allies in the region—Obama said no. Whatever happens in Syria can hardly be America’s fault, when we tried our hardest to stay out of the entire mess, right?
          If these explanations sound a little bit like a grade-school child explaining that he didn’t eat the cookies because there were never any cookies in the jar to begin with, that’s because they do. In fact, President Obama has directly and powerfully shaped the reality in Syria. Over the last six months, as the tempo of the killing has increased, and the Russians have intervened militarily for Assad by bombing rebel-held areas to rubble, the White House has been very actively engaged in the Syrian conflict, both on the diplomatic as well as on the military front, affecting the course of the conflict in both theaters, and setting the terms of a fragile truce that seeks to cement the Assad regime’s gains on a more permanent basis.

          While American reporters may have largely missed the boat on the story of America’s engagement in favor of Assad, the people getting killed in Syria—the vast majority of whom are Sunni Muslims—and their allies are entirely aware of America’s role. As a result, the consequences of what the rebels—and Washington’s Sunni allies—see as a profound betrayal of their interests by the White House are likely to haunt America for many years to come.

          • The French, grand masters of Eurabia, have been watching this play out very closely. After last week’s currying the Ayatollahs, they had to top themselves. But the Legion of Honour – that’s awesome.

            The Turk’s been blindsided by his toy-boy. He’s freaking, indulging in the mother-of-all temper-tantrums. Let him rip, no one cares what happens in Turk-ville, that’s for sure.

            So panicked, he’s been blowing kisses in Bibi’s direction. That’s a fact. What’s more, Bibi’s not spitting at the wretched Turk. Israeli journalists are calling that “statesman-like”. Comments on the articles say it’s craven.

            • It may be real politic in action, the longer Turkey lasts the better for Israel. Once the invasion of Turkey starts I doubt if the fighting will last over 3 months (the conquest will take three months, the terror to stop the Turkish terrorists/resistance will take longer) but those three months will be real valuable to Israel. That time will allow Russia to destroy more of the Sunni troops that will be used against Israel later in the war. While people talk about the massive numbers of Moslems in the world in reality there are a limited number in the Middle East so everyone killed before they attack Israel is a victory for Israel.

              Now if the attack can be help off until Obama is out of office and hopefully the US will be in the process of rebuilding our military with enough extra munitions to resupply Israel.

              • Israel’s too tiny for army size to be a factor. Everybody is bigger.

                They have to make it knock-out strike no matter what. If they don’t preempt, they’ll end up doing massive damage.

                Whatever it takes.

          • Because of Obama betraying our allies it will take decades for the US to regain the trust of any foreign nation. The Special Relationships we use to have with Britain and Israel are going to be especially hard to restore, a fact the Moslem in the Oval Office knows quite well.

        • Some are venal, like the Clintons. Others, like 0, are on the other side. Who planted him? Those who cooperated got lots of lolly. Think-tank, military-industrial complex, media-cartel.

          Remember the Admiral talking about the Iran lobby? We know quite a bit about the MB-Qatar-Brookings lobby, but none of the key players have moved to take them on. He confirmed our fears when he said we’re more infiltrated today than even during the worst of the bad old days.

          I’m going to steel myself to listen again.

  20. China says defense spending pace to slow, to improve intelligence

    BEIJING (Reuters) – China said on Saturday it will raise military spending by 7.6 percent this year, its lowest increase in six years, but vowed to protect its maritime rights amid disputes in the East and South China Seas and improve intelligence gathering.

    The 954.35 billion yuan ($146.67 billion) figure is only around a quarter of the U.S. Defense Department budget for 2016 of $573 billion, but comes at a time of rising concern over China’s intentions in territorial disputes.

    The increase is the first single-digit rise since 2010, following a nearly unbroken two-decade run of double-digit jumps, and comes as China’s economy slows.

    It was announced on Saturday at the start of the annual meeting of parliament, but had been flagged by an official who gave a rough figure the previous day.

    President Xi Jinping is seeking to drag the People’s Liberation Army, the world’s largest armed forces, into the modern age, cutting 300,000 jobs and revamping its Cold War-era command structure.

    However, the reforms have run into opposition from soldiers and officers worried about job security and few details have been released as to what will happen to those laid off.

    Premier Li Keqiang told the opening of China’s largely rubber-stamp parliament that the country will “strengthen in a coordinated way military preparedness on all fronts and for all scenarios”.

      • . It seems that their growth is slowing down, but it still is better than majority of Western countries. They still have a lot of very poor people, mainly in the interior of the country, on the other hand many people in Shanghai or Beijing live much better than better than majority of people in Canada (Shanghai and many other cities are much more modern than Canadian cities) .
        The problem is that communist government is increasing the pro-communist, ant-western propaganda , increasing the invigilation of internet, increasing the military spending. There are some indication that they may prepare for the war. I think that it will be their preferable option in case their economy become really bad.

        • There growth isn’t that much better, if any. They have had 7 months of negative growth and I don’t think any western nation has been quite that bad. Remember China is an export nation when their customers (the west) can’t afford to buy they don’t sell. And with the lifting of sanctions on Iran they are getting less cheap oil to sell at a higher price, add in the much lower price of oil and they are facing major problems. While they do have a lot of crude oil stockpiled they 1) need it for internal consumption and 2) they paid a higher price then they can currently get if they sell.

          This is where China no letting the country peasants make money on their labors is coming back to haunt them, when the west stops buying their economy tanks because they don’t have enough people with month to support their economy by internal purchases.

          Another thing hurting their economy is the increase in the use of robots in manufacturing, currently it is approximately 10% robot on the factory floors now and is predicted to be 45% by 2025. I think the predicted number is low, the robots will make it economically desirable to make your goods in your home nation.

  21. Here’s what happens when you cross the ‘safe space’ crowd

    A student at the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt) got his parents targeted for harassment after he had the temerity to tweet about the antics of liberal protesters on campus.

    The mess for Pitt senior Doug Steeber started earlier this week when Pitt’s College Republicans invited writer Milo Yiannopoulos to give a lecture on the subject of free speech. The event aroused a storm of controversy, with students complaining it triggered them and made them feel physically unsafe (though there was no violence and the event was observed by local police).

    The furor resulted in over 100 students attending a student government meeting Tuesday night, where many denounced the Yiannopoulos speech and demanded new censorship rules that would prevent a similar event from being held in the future.

    Steeber was one of the attendees of the meeting, though not as a protester. He told The Daily Caller News Foundation he livetweeted various quotes and observations from the meeting (which was open to the public). Photos of his tweets indicate that his comments were mostly descriptive in nature, with a mild dose of snark. Nobody at the meeting is specifically identified by name.

  22. Something to watch, it appears that Putin is not going to renew the Agreement of Fars, this is a large slice of territory that the USSR gave to Turkey in 1921 near Armenia. Putin certainly knows how to turn the screws.

    As it is a treaty agreement the land should return to the control of Russia as they are the continuation of the USSR, I would expect that Edrogen will refuse this, meaning that Internationally he is the aggressor which circumnavigates clause 5 of the NATO treaty.

    • No one with any sense has said Putin isn’t smart, things are going to get interesting this summer as Russia takes on Turkey and possibly splits the country with Iran. If/when my prediction comes true expect Saudi an their Sunni allies to side with Turkey, this is when we will discover if the Russians were bluffing when they talked about using tactical nukes against opponents.

      It will be interesting to see what J. E. Dyer and the staff at Liberty Unyielding say about this move, as well as reading what the people at Long War Journal say.

      • I will believe that, things are going to get real tense over the coming months and real scary shortly afterward.

  23. DAILY MAIL – Refugee boys required surgery after being raped in the Calais Jungle, claim campaigners who warn of thousands of migrant orphans vulnerable to abuse

    Seven boys, aged 14-16, have reportedly been victims of rape in the Jungle
    Campaigners are worried about the lack of child protection in the camp
    They fear thousands of unaccompanied children in Europe are at risk
    Yesterday, Muslim migrants were pictured holding a Friday prayer service

    Teenage boys are requiring surgery after being raped in the Calais Jungle and thousands of migrant orphans are vulnerable to abuse, campaigners claimed today.

    Seven boys, between 14 and 16, have reportedly been treated by medical volunteers after being sexually assaulted in the past six months.

    Now campaigners are worried about the lack of child protection inside the refugee camp, which is home to 3,800 people.
    A spokesman for Save The Children added that the problem in the Jungle is part of a continent-wide issue.

  24. I found an article from February 12th, published in Le Monde Diplomatique I think it is a great example how much Western elites are out of touch with reality.
    Fancy a common world
    A futuristic design for European boundlessness
    by Ulrike Guérot and Robert Manasseh
    Segregation is also a form of tolerance, teaches sociology. Against this background and taking into account the experiences that we currently make, we must ask the question whether the currently focused on integrating refugee policy of the EU, with the risk of major social unrest in Europe, is the right strategy.

    Let’s take a look at the recent history to be inspired by solutions that have already proven to be sustainable: What did European migrants during the famines and political crises in the 18th and 19th centuries in masses in the New world have emigrated, Irish, Italians, Baltic, German …? They have built their cities new.

    Everywhere in America, we find names of cities such as New Hanover, New Hampshire, New Hamburg and so on. The Italians have occupied an entire neighborhood in Little Italy in New York. No one at that time had the idea to separate families or quartering in different accommodation or haggling about family reunification. Nobody scored an asylum seeker status, receive state money was even committed to a course or a “culture”. The European refugees are just arrived in a new home there and have rebuilt their old home. From this we can learn.

    How about if refugees in Europe upon allocated land, adjacent to the European cities, but at a distance that upholds otherness. This would provide an opportunity space to adjacent real existing lifestyles and models. This is how New Damascus and New Aleppo, New Madaya midst of Europe. Or New Diyarbakir or new Erbil and Dohuk New for Kurdish refugees. Maybe New Kandahar or New Kunduz for Afghan refugees or New Enugu or New Ondo for Nigerian refugees.

    Europe is big (and soon empty) enough to build a dozen cities and more for newcomers. We are not stressed with integration. We do not cram the refugees in our – sometimes seedy – suburbs or in our – in part thinly populated and deserted – landscapes in rural no man’s land. We do not focus here and there in homes that warms the heart flaring national patriots. We do not play their right to housing and the right to work in their new home against housing and jobs for the lower quarter of our own society. We rub us not together and not against each other. In short, we do without integration. We respect otherness – and let the newcomers and their differences alone.

    The newcomers then take care of itself, entirely in accordance with their culture, cuisine, music and its social structures. They build in Europe their cities back to their seats, their schools, their theaters, their hospitals, their radio stations and newspapers. The Syrian doctors are back doctors without requiring a German license to practice that Kurdish teachers are again teachers, lawyers, lawyers, bakers baker and so on. Here, the EU law applies to all. However, this is important: Ius aequum who shared same legal status – for old EU citizens as for newcomers. Instead dominant culture civil rights for all.

    Europe is building land jumpstart that is opened, so linked to infrastructure – energy, ICT, transport – which otherwise but is free to design the new arrivals. All the money we spend now for integration and language courses, for fences and border guards for security measures or police Europe are refugees jumpstart. As urban development does not go as fast, helping Europe, supported by the UNHCR, initially with Behelfsbehausungen, exactly such residential containers that are also now provided.

    Town planners who deal with refugee camps and they have researched report that are cities of refugee camps after a short time, if you let the refugees alone. The urban development seems to lie in the nature of man. In Lebanon, carefully rectangular established UNHCR containers were converted and put right in the millions camps after a few weeks. It emerged large thoroughfares and small side roads – the main street in a Lebanese refugee camp, for example, Champs Elysée was baptized. Out of nowhere trade arose, arose small boutiques, scrap material by savvy tinkerers and hobbyists rebuilt to mopeds; at one time there were small theater or dance parties. It takes, as experts say, less than six months, then from a refugee camp a town.

    Anyone who has a new home will remain. The concern, one would then stray hordes of refugees on Europe’s roads, of whom one (or rather woman) would permanently protect, should then be a misguided assumption more. Short: It’s about a colorful Europe, respectful coexistence, a composite of otherness under the same European law, a creative power of diversity.

    Over time, the residents of different cities would mix in a very natural way. The newcomers would make a pilgrimage to the nearby “European” cities to work. Or they make their boutiques, trade with what they produce. No need asylum money. Residents of long-established cities are curious. The newcomers have different, interesting food, one or the other unknown spices. Artists come to look, to paint and to write poetry. There arise hip cafes. Students who are looking for cheap housing will set up their potential roommates in New Damascus. Then, the first children come the first ones, then. Then, the first parents out. Three generations later – as long as it takes most – the grandchildren of the first generation newcomers have learned the language of their new home, simply because it is more practical. 2089 could look pretty already! Another hundred years later recalled – similar to New Hanover or Paris, Texas, or Vienna, Virginia, in the United States today – only the city name because the city’s founder once came from another world.
    (google translate)!5274030

    • That’s their version of the storied Israel-Palestine Two-State Solution !

      On a grander scale, mais bien sur, a clotted little Balkans/Lebanon thingie. How’d that work out?

      There’ll be no poaching white boys or Christian women from adjacent statelets. They’ll all be vegetarians in the brave new Euro-Ummah.

  25. UK: Pro-refugee protesters block Westminster Bridge

    Around 100 pro-refugee activists staged a rally in central London on Saturday. The group blocked traffic on Westminster Bridge and demanded that the British government do more to support refugees, especially those stranded in the French port city of Calais

  26. Austria: Anti-refugee protesters denounce Faymann’s asylum policies

    Around 100 anti-refugee protesters staged a rally in Vienna, Saturday, to decry the Austrian government’s policy on refugees and migrants and to demand tougher border controls.

    SOT, Wolfgang Pestl, Organiser of the protest (German): “We are here, to demonstrate against the government. A government, which not only fools around at the issue of migration, but a government, which is more and more limiting the rights of the citizens, and is limiting the freedom of speech.”

    SOT, Thomas Kirschner, Organiser of the protest (German): “If an asylum-seeker is getting 900 Euro as a social income from the government, and retired people are only getting 800 EUR for their life, – and don’t forget, asylum seekers are getting almost everything for free, they get food for free, clothing for free, housing for free, all that is
    free – but the government is forgetting about the Austrian. That is a point, which should not be like that. The Austrian, which is getting less money than an asylum seeker, an Austrian, which have paid taxes all his life, this is absolutely not possible.”
    SOT, Susanne Winter, Member of Austrian Parliament (German): “We all know women, which suddenly don’t dare in the evening, to go home alone to their houses, or which don’t dare to go out at night, because they have fears, that they get groped, or whatever could happen.”

    • The self proclaimed elite are moving heaven and earth to ensure that only someone they approve of is nominated, the fact that the vast majority of their picks lose because the voters stay home is beside the point to as long as they make the choice this proves in their minds that they are better then the voters.

  27. The US government is making the first moves to take over the parenting of all children

    We refer to “family
    engagement” as the
    systematic inclusion of
    families as partners
    , and wellness
    Engagement is enabled by
    positive relationships between
    families and staff in the
    institutions where children
    learn. The goal of family
    engagement is to support
    family wellness and children’s
    learning and
    The purpose of this policy statement is to provide recommendations from the U.S. De
    partments of
    Health and Human Services (HHS) and Education (ED) on systematically engaging families
    in their
    children’s development, learning, and wellness, across early childhood and elementary education
    Families are children’s first and mo
    st important teachers, advocates, and nurturers. Strong family
    engagement is central

    not supplemental

    to promoting children’s healthy development and wellness,
    including social

    emotional and behavioral development; preparing
    children for school; seamles
    sly transitioning them to kindergarten;
    and supporting academic achievement in elementary school and
    beyond. Research indicates that families’ engagement in children’s
    learning and development can impact lifelong health, developmental,
    and academic outcome
    s. When families and the institutions where
    children learn partner in meaningful ways, children have more
    positive attitudes toward school, stay in school longer, have better
    attendance, and experience more school success.

  28. This one is a new web paper so I don’t know how trustworthy it is.

    Obama Plans to Bring Thousands More Syrian Refugees into the U.S. – See more at:

    President Barack Obama has been quietly pushing new plans to bring thousands of additional Syrian refugees into the country, despite the concerns of state and county officials and the outrages committed by welfare-dependent migrants in Europe.

    Obama’s special assistant to the president for immigration policy, Felicia Escobar, recently announced plans to increase America’s intake of migrants, according to the Washington Examiner.

    “We want to make sure that we can increase our numbers of refugees that are able to settle here,” Escobar said. “The need globally is so, so, so massive right now, given all the displacement and conflict around the world, but we also know that we have to do it in a way that’s smart.”

    Federal law already allows the administration to bring in 10,000 Syrian refugees a year, but many states and local county administrations have complained that once the Obama administration places refugees among them, few resources are available to deal with them.

    The influx is very unpopular, according to polls. Also, nearly all immigrants from the Middle East are dependent on welfare. Some migrant and some second-generationMuslim Americans also embrace jihad. –

    • The last I heard was that he was planning on bringing a quarter of a million in this year. people are working hard to stop this invasion.

  29. NATO Commander: ISIS “Spreading Like a Cancer” Among Refugees

    The best way to stop ISIS then is to stop bringing in migrants from ISIS territories. Either that or we come down with an even worse case of ISIS.

    The U.S. senior commander in Europe warned the Senate Armed Services Committee, “What we have seen growing” in the flow of refugees fleeing Syria and migrants leaving depressed countries in the Middle East and North Africa” are “criminals, terrorists and [returning] foreign fighters” coming into Europe.

    “I think we need to be careful about all these flows of refugees” into the West.

    Asked if that also posed a threat to the United States, he said, “I would take Daesh [the Arabic acronym for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS or ISIL)] at their word” that they want to export the caliphate’s control from its base in Iraq and Syria to the West as a whole.

    General Philip Breedlove said that the Islamic State terror group is “spreading like a cancer” among refugees. The group’s members are “taking advantage of paths of least resistance, threatening European nations and our own”, he added.

  30. Boston Police Commissioner William Evans: “We’re All Muslims Deep Down”
    Why I beg to differ.

    “Veterans, troubled by rhetoric, rally support of Muslims” reads the headline to a story in the print edition of today’s Boston Sunday Globe (online yesterday it was “Local veterans hold rally in support of Muslims.”) It described a group, Veterans for Peace, that felt it simply had to stand up on behalf of Muslims in Massachusetts whom, we were told, are feeling terribly put upon because of the “politics of fear” that unscrupulous politicians were using “as a wedge issue and they’re scaring people.” The veterans were there to stand up for Muslims, and among the speakers, the most remarkable one was Police Commissioner William Evans.

    He spoke last, and with great feeling. He told the assembled crowd that “We’re all Muslims deep down. We all yearn for peace.” That astounding remark can be read in either of two ways: “it is because we’re all Muslims deep down that we all yearn for peace,” or, in the other conceivable reading, “it is because we all yearn for peace that we’re all Muslims deep down.”

    But then what are we — what is Commissioner Evans — to make of all those Muslims who in the past 1350 years have made war on non-Muslims from the Atlantic to the East Indies, spreading Islam by conquering so many different lands, subjugating so many different kinds of Disbelievers, and making life so difficult for them that many, in order not to pay the crushing jizyah or endure other disabilities endured by dhimmis, converted to Islam? What are we to make, today, of the host of Muslim groups — the Muslim Brotherhood, the Taliban, the votaries of the Islamic State, first in Syria and Iraq, and now in Libya and Nigeria, and those less well-known — and of all the fire-breathing imams who from millions of pulpits denounce Disbelievers and remind Believers of their duty to be “harsh and angry” with them and make war on them, and adduce Qur’anic quotes that support that duty? Anything? Nothing?

  31. Major MEMRI piece.
    Russian Analysts: Through Its Intervention In Syria, Russia Seeks To Reshape Its Global Standing

    Days before the Valdai Discussion Club’s February 25-26, 2016 conference in Moscow,[1] titled “The Middle East: From Violence to Security,” the Saudi London-based daily Al-Hayat published a report on leading Russian political analysts’ views about Russia’s Middle East policy.

    The report stated that according to Russian analysts, the outcome of the Russian campaign in Syria will determine whether the Kremlin will emerge as a winner with international influence, or will end up a loser. In order to win, they said, Russia needs Syria to remain a united entity – but Russia cannot count on the army of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad or on the capabilities of its local allies, that is, Hizbullah, to achieve this and it is only with its recent intensification of airstrikes that Russia has made military gains. They further explained that Russia’s political victory is predicated on a military solution, and on creating a completely new situation, not on finding a political solution. In the meantime, even before it achieves a decisive military victory, Russia is already enhancing its global standing merely by stepping in, they said.

    It should be stressed that this report reflects an Arab understanding of Russian policies.
    The following is a translation of the Al-Hayat report, which was published February 23, 2016.
    Section Headings
    1. Russia’s Policy Is Predicated Not On Achieving A “Comprehensive Deal” In Syria – But On Changing The Balance Of Power

    2. For Russia, A Partition Of Syria Would Be The Worst Outcome

    3. Russian Experts: No Return To The Hafez Al-Assad Era In Syria

    4. A New Regional Order Will Arise From Regional Wars

    5. Moscow Knows That The Next U.S. President Will Be Firmer Towards Russia

  32. CANADA – Gatineau – Man accused of having ISIL sympathies threatened girlfriend, court hears

    A man described in court as a jihadi sympathizer allegedly threatened to blow up his girlfriend in Gatineau by putting a bomb in her car, a court heard Thursday.

    Police further allege that Ismael Habib‘s girlfriend told them the 28-year-old man wanted to leave Canada and fight with ISIL in Syria, but that he couldn’t go because the RCMP had seized his passport, the bail hearing was told. Habib, 28, also kept video of ISIL victims being beheaded on his computer, the court heard.

    Habib is charged with two counts of criminal harassment and charges related to possessing false identification. There have been no terrorism-related charges, but court was told the RCMP are investigating after these allegations came to light during a domestic dispute in late February. Apart from Habib himself, no one in the case can be named under a court publication ban.

    Habib had a wife in Turkey but he was living with his new girlfriend in Gatineau. It appears his girlfriend wasn’t happy when she discovered this by finding messages from his wife on Habib’s tablet computer.

    Habib’s wife in Turkey wears a veil and was very conservative, court heard, while his girlfriend doesn’t wear any head covering.

    Why, the girlfriend asked Habib, did he choose a relationship with her if he really preferred more conservative women?

    “Maybe it was to bring you back to the right path,” he replied, according to evidence in a court Thursday.

    The court saw video of separate police interviews with Habib and his girlfriend.

    The couple had met in November in Montreal, where he lives. After the 30-year-old divorced girlfriend returned to her home in Gatineau in December, Habib soon followed. They lived together for a month and a half.

    Both are Muslim, but the girlfriend and a police officer both described the couple’s conflicting views of Islam as a source of tension in their relationship.

    She said on video she didn’t believe in “hiding” her face. By contrast, Habib said during his own police interview that he sees head coverings as important to protect women against men who stare at them.

    He asked the detective whether he was married. The detective said he was.

    So Habib asked the officer whether he would want his own wife walking around in public in a bikini. Not covering a woman’s face is like wearing a bikini in public for Muslims, he said.

    While he willingly discussed misfortune and men’s prying eyes, Habib didn’t want to discuss evidence that, according to police, showed he had false identification.

    The girlfriend told police that Habib kept “extreme” videos on his tablet, including graphic videos of beheading by ISIL, and videos teaching that only women who wear veils are good.

    A police officer asked Habib in the recorded interview about the false identification he had in the name of Alexandre Fortin.

    “It’s not a name that exists,” Habib replied. He said he made it up, but used his real photo and birthday on the ID.

    Another officer said that Habib and the girlfriend — now his ex-girlfriend — “do not have the same philosophy about Islam,” and this led to arguing, and finally to the alleged bombing threat.

    “She felt very afraid,” the officer said.

    Police allege Habib also had a machine that makes credit cards, and was carrying more than one piece of false identification when he was arrested. He also had three cellphones.

    The bail hearing will continue next week.

    Timeline in Ismael Habib case:

    November, 2015: Habib meets a 30-year-old Gatineau woman in Montreal. They begin a relationship.

    December: They move to Gatineau, eventually moving in together. The woman later tells police that Habib had no valid passport in this period. He allegedly told her the RCMP had taken it.

    Feb. 20, 2016: The woman goes to police, tells them Habib appears to have jihad connections. Police question Habib about his girlfriend’s allegations of threats. When they pick him up he has identification in a false name

    CBC – Warrant issued for Ismael Habib under suspicion of terrorism
    Montreal man has not been charged with any terrorism-related offences

    A Montreal judge issued a warrant today to arrest a man out of concerns he “may” commit a terrorism-related offence— the same day the man appeared in a Gatineau courtroom for a bail hearing in an unrelated case.

    Ismael Habib has not been charged with any terrorism-related offences, but RCMP asked a judge to issue a warrant for his arrest under recent amendments to the Criminal Code that strengthened anti-terrorism laws.

    Before Bill C-51, the former Conservative government’s anti-terrorism legislation which became law last June, warrants could be issued for the arrest of a person who “will commit” a terrorism-related offence. Now warrants can be issued for a person who “may” commit an act of terrorism.

    RCMP have also confiscated Habib’s passport, his lawyer told CBC News.
    Gatineau bail hearing

    Habib is seeking bail in a Gatineau courtroom, after he was charged with uttering threats, harassment, being in possession of a false driver’s licence and making a fake ID.

    He was arrested after a Gatineau woman complained he threatened her, including a car bomb threat.

    The bail hearing was adjourned on Thursday afternoon and is expected to resume on Tuesday.

    If Habib is granted bail, he will be transferred to Montreal under the warrant.

  33. Release of Clinton Documents Delayed After State Department Discovers ‘Thousands’ of Unsearched Records

    Citizens United, Judicial Watch lawsuits affected by development

    The State Department’s recent discovery of thousands of unsearched records from Hillary Clinton’s tenure has delayed several public records lawsuits and could keep many of the documents out of the public sphere until next fall.

    The watchdog groups Citizens United and Judicial Watch, which are suing the State Department for Clinton-related records, are two plaintiffs that have been affected by the discovery. The State Department said the new documents could take months to process, a time period that extends well beyond its court-ordered deadlines.

    Citizens United said the State Department has yet to explain how the electronic files were overlooked for the past two years, raising questions about whether this was a stonewalling effort. The group is seeking records related to Clinton donors Gilbert Chagoury and Rajiv Fernando.

    “With this 11th hour revelation, the State Department has missed its court-ordered deadline to finish the production of documents in this case,” said David N. Bossie, president of Citizens United. “These newly discovered records could impact document production in other Citizens United FOIA lawsuits as well as cases involving other plaintiffs.”

    On Jan. 14, the State Department disclosed in a Judicial Watch case that officials had recently found shared and individual electronic files in the executive secretary’s office that were not previously searched in response to the lawsuit. Judicial Watch filed the lawsuit last May.

    Although the court had ordered the State Department to turn over all relevant records by last October, attorneys said they would need until this spring to process the new documents.

    State filed a nearly identical status report in the Citizens United lawsuit on Feb. 29, the same day as its court-ordered deadline to turn over all requested documents.

    Attorneys for the department told Citizens United the discovery of unsearched records could set back the processing schedule until next fall. The State Department said it had not informed Citizens United earlier because its attorneys did not know about the new sources of records until Feb. 11—even though they had been disclosed to Judicial Watch in early January.

    “Neither State’s agency counsel nor undersigned counsel for State was aware of this issue until February 11, 2016,” said the State Department in a Feb. 29 court filing.

    According to court statements, the new sources of information come from the executive secretary’s office, which acted as the liaison between Secretary Clinton’s office and the rest of the State Department, the White House, and national security agencies.

    One of the new sources is a series of “shared office folders,” computer folders that were used by multiple staff members. State Department public records officials said they first discovered this source in November. They said the files had previously been overlooked because they had been “retired” and removed from the executive secretary’s office last year.

    The second new source is “individual folders,” which contain word documents, PDF documents, and the emails of Clinton aides Cheryl Mills and Jake Sullivan. These emails had already been processed, but officials said they did not realize until last December that there were other types of documents in these folders.

    The late findings have impacted at least two additional Judicial Watch lawsuits, according to court documents. The House Benghazi Committee last week received over 1,600 pages of documents related to Libya from the new files, which the committee said it had requested nearly a year ago.

    The State Department said it could not comment on whether other public records lawsuits could be impacted, or why Citizens United wasn’t informed about the new files at the same time as Judicial Watch.

    “The State Department does not comment on matters in litigation,” a State Department official said. “We can confirm that State recently located documents from electronic sources not previously searched that are potentially responsive to certain FOIA cases involving records originating from the Office of the Secretary during Secretary Clinton’s tenure. As a result, the Department is undertaking additional searches of those files.”

    “These unsearched materials include a variety of file types, but do not include the email accounts of former Secretary Clinton’s senior staff, which we have been searching for some time,” the official said.

    The State Department noted that it has been taking steps to improve records management and hired a transparency coordinator last fall.

    Sources also pointed to another recent personnel change at the State Department—the departure of attorney Catherine Duval, who had been involved in processing Clinton’s emails for release last year. Duval was previously in charge of document production at the IRS when many of the agency’s emails were destroyed. Congressional Republicans have accused Duval of obstructing their efforts to obtain Clinton documents.

    Duval left the State Department last September. A few weeks later, the Republicans on the House Benghazi Committee released a statement praising increased transparency at the State Department.

    “It’s curious the Department is suddenly able to be more productive after recent staff changes involving those responsible for document production,” committee spokesman Jamal Ware said in a Sept. 25, 2015 press release.

    But the latest disclosure of unsearched records will still have an impact on groups like Citizens United, which first filed its public records request in 2014 and could be waiting until after the presidential election before it receives all its documents.

    In light of the new discovery, the court pushed back the State Department’s production deadline until next August. Citizens United said it would not be surprised by additional delays.

    “The public has a right to inspect records that are in the possession of their government,” Bossie said. “These delay tactics by the Obama Administration look like nothing more than an assist to former Secretary Clinton.”

    “This latest declaration is more of the constant ‘drip, drip, drip’ that [D.C. District Court] Judge Sullivan spoke of last week,” he added. “Unfortunately, when dealing with the State Department, it’s not a matter if this will happen again, it’s a matter of when.”

  34. Greece: More than 12,000 remain stranded in Idomeni refugee camp

    More than 12,000 refugees and migrants remained stranded at the refugee camp in Idomeni, Saturday, as Macedonian authorities continue to allow only a fraction of those waiting to cross the Greek-Macedonian border.

  35. RT -Documentary – They Don’t just Dance…The Afghan tradition of recruiting young boys for sex

    In Afghanistan’s male-dominated society women face many restrictions. Among the many prohibitions, they are not allowed to go to parties or dance. That female social vacuum has led to an old tradition of “bachas” – dancing boys who dance in women’s clothes at men-only parties but the boy’s job description involves more than dancing. After the party, the men choose their favourite boy for sex. Premarital sex is forbidden for women so many men seek the company of rent boys. Here, sex with a boy considered less of a sin than having sex with an unmarried woman, and male child prostitution is seen as a lesser evil than women selling their bodies.

    Often, boys who need to feed their families become bachas from as young as 12. Some continue for years, while for others, it’s a temporary occupation. The practice is illegal in modern Afghanistan, officially, but the men who keep and recruit bachas, known as “playboys”, are well connected and rich, essentially placing them beyond the law. Besides, it’s a long-standing tradition that is unlikely to go away any time soon. In fact, it appears to be undergoing a revival.
    In poverty-stricken Afghanistan, where women are forbidden to work, making men the only breadwinners, boys often have to provide for their families from a very young age. Many are tempted by the money that being a bacha can give them while their families are often too busy trying to survive, to object, or even notice where the money comes from.

    RT Doc goes to Afghanistan to ask how the bachas became rent boys and goes to a private party where the boys dance and meet their customers. Boys, handlers and punters all speak openly about this outlawed, yet widely practiced, sexual tradition.

  36. The Shift in U.S. Policy Away from Saudi Arabia and Israel Is Not a Fluke

    Since 2008, argues Michael Doran, the U.S. has moved away from its traditional alliances with Israel, Saudi Arabia, and other Middle Eastern states while also abandoning the use of military deterrence against America’s enemies. As a result, an alliance led by Russia and Iran is gaining supremacy over those former allies. Doran further considers the possibility that the shift in America’s orientation is not a “historic fluke” but “a significant change in American policy that will be with us for a long time.” (Video, 25 minutes.)

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