Reader’s links for June 3 – 2016

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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

70 Replies to “Reader’s links for June 3 – 2016”

  1. Turkey Says Ties With Germany Won’t ‘Deteriorate Entirely’ (abcnews, June 3, 2016)

    “Turkey’s prime minister says Ankara intends to take further measures in response to the German Parliament’s decision to label as genocide the killings of Armenians by Ottoman Turks a century ago. But he says no one should expect ties to “deteriorate entirely.”

    Binali Yildirim said Friday that Germany had made a “historic” error, which it should rectify…”

    • Turkey: Justice Minister slams Germany over Armenian genocide bill

      Turkish Minister of Justice Bekir Bozdag slammed Germany over the official recognition of the Armenian genocide, while speaking at a Chamber of Commerce and Industry meeting in Sorgun, Thursday.

      SOT, Bekir Bozdag, Turkish Minister of Justice (Turkish): “First you burn the Jews in ovens and then you come and accuse the Turkish people of genocide. Look back at your own history first, what do you have to be proud of? Are you proud of the crematoriums where you burnt people alive? There is nothing that we can be ashamed of in our history.”

      • Check out the video Russia released about the supplies Turkey is sending to ISIS. Any loosening of the ties is good. The video is probably the first of many releases of info until Putin decides to take Turkey.

  2. With New Tactics, Taliban Gain Ground in South Afghanistan (abcnews, June 3, 2016)

    “In the rugged terrain of the Taliban heartland in southern Afghanistan, the fight against Kabul has become a war for control of key stretches of main roads and highways as the insurgents use a new tactic to gain ground.

    First they storm a checkpoint, kill all the policemen, seize their weapons and equipment and effectively cut off the main road to a remote village. They raise the white Taliban flag and plant roadside bombs to prevent cars from coming through the checkpoint. Any vehicle that attempts to pass through is either blown up or attacked, residents and local leaders say.

    Then they wait. Faced with shortages of basic food items and price hikes as their supplies dwindle, the villagers are eventually forced to abandon their homes and to move to a place where they can afford to eat and live. Most sneak out on foot or on donkeys through backroads and mountain paths, leaving many of their belongings behind.

    Though the new tactic may be obviously simple, it has helped the Taliban gain ground — albeit at a slower pace than a deadly, surprise raid on an entire village…”

  3. Two Weeks in January: America’s secret engagement with Khomeini (BBC, June 3, 2016)

    “…But it’s now clear that, in the final stages of the crisis, America had in effect hedged its bet by keeping a firm foot in both camps in the hopes of a soft landing after the fall of the Shah’s regime.

    But Carter’s gambit proved to be a massive blunder. The real danger was overlooked, Khomeini’s ambitions were underestimated, and his moves were misread.

    Unlike Carter, Khomeini pursued a consistent strategy and played his hand masterfully. Guided by a clear vision of establishing an Islamic republic, the ayatollah engaged America with empty promises, understood its intentions, and marched toward victory…”

    • Iran leader slams ‘fake’ BBC report on secret US contact (BBC, June 3, 2016)

      “Iran’s Supreme Leader has dismissed a BBC report revealing secret contact between late Islamic Republic founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and US presidents before the Iranian revolution.

      Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said “Britain has always been hostile to us” and the report was “fake”.

      The story was based on newly declassified US government documents from the Cold War.

      Mr Khamenei suggested they were forged…”

    • Carter was a dangerous fool, a dupe.
      With Zbigniew Brzezinski as national security advisor, he might’ve facilitated the Shah’s overthrow. But it’s hard to ascribe credit or blame in the face of such towering incompetence.

      Brzezinsky’s a genuine bad guy. Brent Scrowcroft doesn’t radiate evil like his buddy, but he’s dirty by association. Both played large in 0’s Iran debacle.

  4. Councils demand more funding for child refugees care costs (BBC, June 3, 2016)

    “The cost of caring for refugee children will lead to higher council tax bills or service cuts unless more money is provided, ministers have been warned.

    A scheme to resettle unaccompanied children around the UK starts in July.

    The government has agreed to take in more child refugees, including from the EU and 3,000 children and relatives from the Middle East and North Africa.

    The Local Government Association says the number of spaces councils will make available will depend on funding…”

  5. First negative decision on asylum request for a Syrian (ibna, June 3, 2016)

    “The first, according to information, negative decision on an appeal for a Syrian refugee was issued by the Appeals Committee.

    According to information from AMNA, the decision relates to a 46-year old Syrian, who arrived in Lesvos after the EU-Turkey agreement, and whose international protection request he made in Greece was considered as inadmissible, as Turkey is for him a safe third country…”

  6. Libyan Commander Says His Forces Are Inside IS Stronghold (abcnews, June 3, 2016)

    “A top Libyan commander loyal to the U.N.-brokered government says his forces have pushed into an Islamic State stronghold in central Libya and are now fighting militants on the streets of Sirte.

    Col. Mohammed al-Ghasri said the advance came under the cover of heavy airstrikes. He spoke to reporters late on Thursday.

    Libyan forces, mainly militias from the western city of Misrata, have been advancing on Sirte, the main IS bastion in Libya and the birthplace of former Libyan leader Mohammed Gadhafi, for the past 25 days.

    Al-Ghasri says the plan is to impose a siege on the city to prevent IS militants from fleeing. He added that Sirte is a warzone and warned civilians to stay away from the troops or they would be considered a target.”

  7. Kashmir Rebels Ambush Indian Paramilitary Soldiers; 2 Killed (abcnews, June 3, 2016)

    “Police say rebels in the Indian-controlled portion of Kashmir have ambushed a convoy of Indian paramilitary soldiers, killing at least two and injuring four others.

    Police officer Syed Javaid Mujtaba Gillani said the militants sprayed bullets at the Border Security Force convoy in southern Bijbehara town on Friday.

    The rebels, who are fighting for Kashmir’s independence from India or its merger with Pakistan, often attack Indian targets in the region…”

  8. Officials Say 499 Islamic Extremists Pose Threat in Germany (abcnews, June 3, 2016)

    “Authorities in Germany are monitoring almost 500 Islamic extremists they believe pose a potential security threat, officials said Friday, a day after the arrest of three men suspected of planning to carry out an attack in the country for the Islamic State group.

    The men — identified only as Syrian citizens Hamza C., 27; Mahood B., 25; and Abd Arahman A. K., 31 — were arrested in three separate locations across Germany following a tip from a fourth suspect who had approached French authorities earlier this year.

    While Germany hasn’t suffered mass-casualty attacks by Islamic extremists of the type seen in France and Belgium over recent months, authorities say the country is a target and the risk of attacks is high.

    “It’s definitely too soon for a fundamental reassessment in light of what happened yesterday,” Interior Ministry spokesman Johannes Dimroth said, adding that authorities will have to await the outcome of prosecutors’ investigation.

    All three of those arrested in Germany were living in refugee shelters, adding to concerns that IS might be sending fighters to Germany disguised as asylum-seekers. Almost 1.1 million people were registered as asylum-seekers in Germany last year, many of them fleeing war and persecution in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan…”

  9. Protesters Punch, Throw Eggs at Trump Supporters in Calif.

    Donald Trump supporters leaving the presumptive GOP nominee’s rally in San Jose on Thursday were pounced by protesters, some of whom threw punches and eggs.

    The protesters chased and taunted Trump’s supporters outside the San Jose Convention Center. They surrounded one woman and threw eggs and bottles at her.

  10. San Jose Mayor Justifies Mob Violence

    Thousands of Americans participated in that most benign of civic rituals in San Jose, California, on Thursday night: seeing a presidential candidate speak. Of course, that candidate was Donald Trump, so as these engaged citizens streamed out of the arena, they were subjected to astonishing levels of violence. An angry mob pelted eggs, tomatoes, and bottles at the spectators—as well as the police, who tried (and failed) to maintain some semblance of order. Other Trump supporters were set upon and punched. One was left with blood streaming down his face. (See representative video below.)

    The mayor of San Jose, Democrat Sam Liccardo, reacted angrily to the events. Not that he was particularly upset at the violent mob that attacked innocent Americans, of course. No, his ire was directed at Mr. Trump. “At some point Donald Trump needs to take responsibility for the irresponsible behavior of his campaign,” the mayor said. Apparently it was downright “irresponsible” of Trump to even set foot in California’s third largest city.

    The Washington Post characterized the mayor’s remarks as if they were just standard partisan hackery: It noted that the mayor is a “Hillary Clinton supporter.” But Liccardo’s remarks were far different than, say, a cable TV flack claiming that Trump’s tax policy “favors the rich.” (And by the way, he employed the same logic as as a slack-jawed misogynist saying of a sexual assault victim, “hey, her skirt was so short, she was asking for it.”)

    Mayor Liccardo justified committing violence against people with whom he disagrees politically. That’s an attack on the very foundation of our system of government and the First Amendment, and a very dangerous one.

  11. This Pakistani Father Of 35 Now Aims For 100 Children

    QUETTA: A father of 35 is now searching for a fourth wife as he romps towards his goal of 100 children.

    Sardar Jan Mohammad Khilji, 46, says he believes it is his religious duty to have as many children as possible.

    Insisting it is “very rare” that he mixes up his children’s names, the medical technician said he juggles their affections by taking turns to attend family events with them and their mothers, such as weddings.

    His three current wives support his procreational and matrimonial goals, he said, adding that they all live in harmony together — though he would not allow AFP to speak with them.

    Rights activists warn it is women and children who suffer most in polygamous marriages.

    Pakistani men are permitted to take up to four wives under Islam, though to do so they must seek permission from their first wife and an arbitration council.

    It remains rare for men to take multiple wives in the country, but when polygamy does take place, studies have shown it can result in “depression and despair” among wives, while children often struggle to know their father, said Rafia Zakaria, a women’s rights activist.

    The Holy Quran, she told AFP, dictates that multiple wives may be taken only when a husband can do “perfect justice” among them.

    “Well, perfect justice is impossible, and for this reason polygamy is never a good situation,” said Zakaria, who campaigns against the practice.

    “Someone always suffers and almost always it is the women and children,” she added.

    Family lawyer Mohammed Bilal Kasi, who deals with polygamy cases in Quetta agreed.

    “We lawyers are well aware of social problems surrounding polygamy,” he said. “Women and children undergo mental agony due to these affairs.”

    The tension can lead to serious legal disputes over property and rights after the father’s death, he said.

    Denied his permission to speak, Jan’s wives could not describe what life is like for his sprawling dynasty, who all live together in a five-bedroom mud hut in the outskirts of Quetta in restive Balochistan province.

    At least two of his children appear to support his goals, however, including his eldest child Shagufta Nasreen.

    “A large family is like Allah bestowing a case of mangoes,” the 15-year-old explained, adding that she hopes to go into medicine like her father.

    Jan’s eldest son, 13-year-old Mohammed Esa, also wanted to emulate the patriarch — but he has set his sights even higher, resolving that he will have more than 100 children.

    Jan, who claims he is a qualified medical technician, runs an unregulated clinic where he treats people for minor ailments such as headaches, adding that as he is “serving humanity” he charges just 250 rupees ($2.30) per patient while providing his services to the poor for free.

    He also runs a seminary funded by donations where nearly 400 students — including four of his sons — are studying the Koran, and says he pays for 20 of his 35 children to attend private school.

    The household expenditures of his growing empire, however, can reach up to 120,000 rupees per month — more than ten times Pakistan’s average — in a neighbourhood that lacks basic amenities such as tap water and sewage, he said.

    He insisted he has never faced any financial problems trying to care for his brood, but did not explain how he could cover all the expenses with just pay for his medical work.

    Jan conceded that his needs may increase as his children grow and so is calling on the government to allocate funds for the food, education, and healthcare of his family — a request that is unlikely to be fulfilled.

    But Jan has faith. If the government does not listen, he said, he trusts in God to provide.

    Pakistan has the highest birth rate in South Asia — around three children per woman according to World Bank and government figures — though an accurate census has not been conducted in more than 30 years.

    Jan put his fertility down to daily doses of fresh and dry fruits, milk and meat.

    While his eldest child is 15, his youngest is just a few weeks old. At the beginning of March he was still a father of merely 33, but that month two more daughters were born within six days of one another, he says.

    His marriages were all arranged by his parents. “I married the first one…when I was 26 years old, and the next year wedded the other two within a gap of five months,” he told AFP.

    His next wedding, however, could be arranged via Facebook: since his story aired in Pakistani media, he says, he has had a slew of marriage offers via the social network.

    A large poster on the wall at Jan’s house carries the symbol he used when he ran for provincial office in 2013: a double bed, which, he told AFP, “denotes special pleasure and meaning in my life”.

    That time at least, his ambition fell short: he garnered 980 votes, not nearly enough to win. – AFP

  12. Iran: Hundreds of thousands mark 26th anniversary of death of Ayatollah Khomeini

    Hundreds of thousands of Iranians from across the country gathered at Tehran’s Mausoleum of Ayatollah Seyyed Ruhollah Khomeini to mark the 27th anniversary of the death of the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

  13. Meet Obama’s Orwellian-sounding ‘mobility counselors,’ whose job is to do this

    What does mandatory busing look like in the twenty-first century? It looks like “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing,” a new regulation imposed by Barack Obama’s Department of Housing and Urban Development, which forces low-income tenants to move out of their existing homes in cities and into the suburbs.

    If the city-dwellers choose not to participate, they will experience a reduction in the subsidies they’ve been receiving. It’s a Catch-22 for the poor that has the added bonus of lowering real estate and housing values in the ‘burbs.

    Starting this fall, HUD will be reallocating funding for Section 8 housing in order to make suburbs “less white and less wealthy.” Secretary Julian Castro anticipates finalizing what is called the “Small-Area Fair Market Rents” (SAFMR) law this October, in the final days of Obama’s reign.

    Here is where the “mobility counselors” of the post’s title come in. The counselors are government real estate agents whose job is move Section 8 tenants into more affluent neighborhoods, which (by the way) most Americans could not afford.

  14. Spengler:
    Turkey’s Demographic Winter and Erdogan’s Duplicity

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan demanded that Turkish women abandon contraception in a televised address May 30, Reuters reported. “We will multiply our descendants. They talk about population planning, birth control. No Muslim family can have such an approach,” Erdogan said. The Turkish leader has denounced Turkish women for refusing to have more babies on many earlier occasions.

    Erdogan has played every side of every issue…[but when] he talks about Turkey’s failing demographics, though, Erdogan is speaking from the heart.Turkey’s Kurdish citizens continue to have three or four children while ethnic Turks have fewer than two. By the early 2040s, most of Turkey’s young people will come from Kurdish-speaking homes. The Kurdish-majority Southeast inevitably will break away. Erdogan’s hapless battle against the inevitable motivates the sometimes bewildering twists and turns of Turkish policy.

  15. European Union Declares War on Internet Free Speech

    The European Union (EU), in partnership with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft, has unveiled a “code of conduct” to combat the spread of “illegal hate speech” online in Europe.

    Proponents of the initiative argue that in the aftermath of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels, a crackdown on “hate speech” is necessary to counter jihadist propaganda online.

    Opponents counter that the initiative amounts to an assault on free speech in Europe. They say that the EU’s definition of “hate speech” and “incitement to violence” is so vague that it could include virtually anything deemed politically incorrect by European authorities, including criticism of mass migration, Islam or even the European Union itself.

    Some Members of the European Parliament have characterized the EU’s code of online conduct — which requires “offensive” material to be removed from the Internet within 24 hours, and replaced with “counter-narratives” — as “Orwellian.”

    The “code of conduct” was announced on May 31 in a statement by the European Commission, the unelected administrative arm of the European Union. A summary of the initiative follows:

  16. Syria: Russia releases evidence of militant supply column coming from Turkey

    Russia’s Defence Ministry released drone footage on Friday, showing an alleged convoy of military reinforcements heading from Turkey towards militant positions in Syria’s Idlib and Aleppo provinces.

  17. DAILY MAIL – Nightclub kicked out drunk student, 19, and ‘abandoned’ her to be picked off ‘like prey’ and have her virginity taken by two [ Muslim ] rapists in an hour long ordeal

    Victim was thrown out of Snobs in Birmingham after collapsing while drunk
    Outside Zaheer Abbas, 30, and Sajad Hussain, 35, lured her into Transit van
    She was driven to an industrial estate where she was raped and abused
    Abbas jailed for 11 years for rape – Hussain got six years for sexual assault
    Judge Mary Stacey says nightclub ‘abandoned’ her to her abusers

    A judge has accused a nightclub of allowing a teenager to fall into the hands of two sex attackers after they kicked her out before she was abducted and raped.

    Mrs Justice Mary Stacey accused Snobs in Birmingham of ‘abandoning’ the 19-year-old victim to be picked off ‘like prey’ by two sex attackers, who took the girl’s virginity.

    She even suggested the nightclub was partly to blame for the rape by saying they had ‘created the circumstances for the crime to occur.'[…]

  18. JAPAN – Schools take in Tokyo mosque to get U N B I A S E D glimpse of Islam

    A recent wave of terror has fueled anti-Muslim hostility worldwide, fostering a negative image of Islam — a faith still unfamiliar in Japan.

    But Japan’s youth have been seeking answers to questions including what Islam really teaches and why it is blamed for violence.

    Many schools have introduced visits to Tokyo’s largest mosque in the belief that the cultural experience will provide students with a tangible, unbiased grasp of Islam. The visits already have proved effective.

    Shunya Senaga, 17, called the opportunity to watch Muslims pray a “precious experience,” adding it made him understand how important Allah is to their culture.
    Senaga said he knows one Muslim, but only on a greeting basis.

    “That person is so accustomed to Japanese culture that I didn’t think of differences between us,” he said.

    Although basic knowledge of Islam is part of the school’s curriculum, he said, news reports concerning issues involving the Islamic State group and the impact it’s had “make us perceive Islamic culture negatively.”

    Senaga was one of 360 students from public Omiya Kita High School in Omiya, Saitama Prefecture, who in late April visited Japan’s largest mosque — the Tokyo Camii & Turkish Culture Center in Shibuya Ward.

    “All the news about IS jumps into your subconscious, but apparently Muslims are really good people. Only some are acting against their values,” said Senaga’s 16-year-old classmate Naoto Takaku.

    The visit to the mosque came ahead of a trip this fall to Singapore and Malaysia, where they plan to spend a day observing Muslim families in rural Malaysia.

    “In a place like this they can get a glimpse into the Islamic world and see what kind of religion Islam is,” teacher Akiko Kobayashi, who will be in charge of the trip, told The Japan Times.

    “I want students to see how people in Islamic communities co-exist, support each other, and show them their everyday life to help them understand it’s a religion advocating for peace,” she said. “I want them to get rid of biases.”

    For nearly all of the students it was their first close encounter with Islam.

    Before stepping into the mosque, some were hastily taking off their shoes, while female students, with apparent excitement on their faces, took snapshots with their heads covered.

    “I believe school education is one of the best ways Japanese can get more familiar with Islam … and all teachers who bring their students here are more than welcome,” the mosque’s spokesman, Shigeru Shimoyama, said.

    Shimoyama, a Muslim convert who served as their guide that day, believes young people need more exposure to religion at an early age so they can deepen their understanding about religious facts.

    He invites students to learn about the religion’s values, including that in the eyes of Allah, all people are equal, and about the achievements of Islamic civilizations 🙂 🙂 🙂 , still present in daily life, that have been overshadowed by media reports on terrorist acts carried out by radicals with Islamic backgrounds.

    Shimoyama said that in the past, Tokyo Camii only drew attention from elderly people or fine arts students who would come with sketchbooks to study the mosque’s architecture.

    But in the past few years, the number of visitors from junior high and high schools has risen significantly, he said.

    The second-year students from Omiya Kita High School represented the largest non-Muslim youth group to enter the mosque to date.

    “I am happy when young people learn something new here, something they can’t find in textbooks,” Shimoyama said.

    During the lecture, Shimoyama spoke about how Japan’s Islamic community has grown since the construction of Tokyo Camii, which in its initial form in the 1930s served as an educational and social service center for Tartar immigrants who fled the 1917 Russian Revolution. Later demolished and reconstructed, it was completed in its current form in 2000.

    Shimoyama added that of the roughly 100,000 Muslims living in Japan, about 10,000 are Japanese.

    Several adherents arrived to offer prayers. Students raised their heads when a group of Muslims started chanting loudly and, encouraged by Shimoyama, moved closer to observe the ritual.

    The fact that prayer is the central element of Islam and Muslims must roll out their prayer rugs five times a day made an impression on the young listeners.

    English teacher Tomoko Taga, who accompanied the students, hopes the trip to Southeast Asia will become a chance for them to learn about economic development in other countries, a lesson that may serve them well in their careers.

    “I want them to see how life in a culturally different environment looks,” she said. “I know they might experience culture shock … but I hope they can benefit from this experience in the future.”

    Shimoyama believes this kind of knowledge is indispensable because the Muslim population is projected to grow and eventually exceed the population of Christians, noting the spread of Islam is already noticeable, even in Japan.

    “Of all religions practiced worldwide, only Christianity and Islam have become the world’s largest, but Islam, with world’s second-largest population of 1.6 billion adherents, remains unknown in Japan,” he said.

    “Many Japanese insurers are now tapping markets in countries like Indonesia,” where over 90 percent of the population is Muslim, Shimoyama said, adding that Indonesians also constitute the largest Muslim group among visitors to and residents of Japan.

    But following gruesome incidents last year, including the execution of Japanese freelance journalist Kenji Goto in Syria and the deadly coordinated attacks in Paris, the Islamophobic attacks on Muslim communities did not spare Tokyo Camii.

    “You Muslims get out of here,” Shimoyama recalled one caller telling the mosque over the phone. “But I try to respond and listen to their claims.”

    Shimoyama blames the media for evoking a negative perception of Islam, especially among those unfamiliar with the religion.

    What drove Shimoyama to convert was the hospitality he found in Muslims he met when traveling.

    When Japan-born Shimoyama visited Africa in his university years, he had not heard much about Muslims before. But their hospitality sparked his interest in Islam’s teachings, from which he believed their kindness sprang.

    Since his return he has been advocating for Japan’s Islamic community and working to raise awareness and remove misconceptions of the faith caused by radical extremists.

    According to Shimoyama, unlike those abroad who feel threatened by the growing presence of Muslims in their countries, today’s Japanese show greater interest and don’t tend to express anti-Muslim sentiment.

    Shimoyama also visits schools around Tokyo to talk about Islamic society.

    In a letter addressed to Shimoyama, a sixth-grader from an elementary school who attended his lecture wrote: “I used to think of Islam as something scary … that caused so many people to lose their lives.”

    In their letters, other classmates, too, admitted to having linked Islam with terrorism, but added that getting to know about Islam made them contemplate why some believers started turning violent.

    They felt sorry for their brethren in conflict-torn areas.

    “In the future I’d like to become a doctor . . . and go abroad to rescue victims of wars like those . . . in Syria,” wrote one girl.

    • US-led summit to seek to double number of resettled refugees

      WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House says an international summit hosted by Obama will seek to double the number of refugees resettled around the world.

      Obama plans to host the summit on refugees in September on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly. White House national security adviser Susan Rice says the summit’s goals include a 30 percent increase in funding for humanitarian support. She says the leaders will also seek to increase by 1 million the number of refugees attending school globally.

      The summit comes as the Obama administration struggles to meet its commitment to take in 10,000 Syrian refugees this year. Europe has borne the brunt of the Syrian refugee crisis.

      Mexico, Sweden, Canada, Germany, Jordan and Ethiopia are co-hosting the summit along with the U.N. secretary-general.

    • Europe goes Arabic: Media, classes & apps for refugees across EU

      While learning Arabic in primary schools has become a contentious issue in France, the language is gaining increasing traction in many European countries.

  19. CNN – Donald Trump adviser mentions waterboarding Clinton

    During a discussion about Donald Trump saying he will prosecute Hillary Clinton for her emails, Trump senior adviser Barry Bennett said that “you couldn’t get the truth out of Hillary, even if you waterboarded her.”

  20. TEHRAN, Iran — Iran’s top leader on Friday ruled out any formal cooperation with America against the Islamic State group, their common adversary in Iraq and Syria, insisting that the United States remains a prime enemy of Tehran, despite a landmark nuclear deal with word powers.

  21. U.S. fighter jets on Friday launched strikes against Islamic State from an aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean Sea, the U.S. Navy said, marking the first time a U.S. aircraft carrier targeted areas in the Middle East from the Mediterranean since the Iraq War began in 2003.

    The jets departed from the USS Harry S Truman after the aircraft carrier moved into the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal, according to the Navy. It gave no immediate details on whether the targets were in Iraq or Syria, or what sort of targets were hit.

  22. MOSCOW (AP) — Russia’s foreign minister said Washington has asked Moscow not to target the al-Qaida’s branch in Syria, the Nusra Front, but the U.S. insisted Friday that it only wants Russia to carefully select it targets to avoid hitting civilians and legitimate opposition groups.

    Sergey Lavrov said that Russia has long insisted that the moderate, U.S.-backed opposition groups should leave the areas occupied by Nusra. He said in televised remarks that Russia and the U.S. have engaged in close dialogue on how to secure a cease-fire in Syria, but added that fighting the Islamic State group and Nusra should be a top priority.

    “They are telling us not to hit it (Nusra), because there is ‘normal’ opposition next .. to it,” Lavrov said. “But that opposition must leave terrorists’ positions, we long have agreed on that.

  23. An Osogbo High Court has granted the prayers of female Muslim students to wear Hijab (veil) in all public primary and secondary schools in Osun.
    The court, presided by Justice Jide Falola, in a 51-page judgment delivered on Friday, held that any act of molestation, harassment, torture and humiliation against female Muslim students using Hijab constitutes a clear infringement on their fundamental rights.
    Folala cited Section 38 of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended) to rest his ruling.

  24. Local News
    Schwäbisch Gmünd | Thursday, 02. June 2016
    Embarrassing Flood Staging with refugees in the Weststadt

    A „help effort“ by refugees, staged by the municipality on request of a foreign camera team, sparked outrage among residents and flood helpers in the Weststadt [a district of Schwäbisch Gmünd] which is still marked by the flood.
    The aid became a satire, as several eye witnesses, independent of each other, described to the Rems newspaper, seeking help also in the interests of the obviously “abused asylum seekers”.
    Despite the massive irritation, all observers emphasized that they truly pitied the refugees in this situation. They tried to quickly provide work gloves for the men who apparently did not even know what this all was about. They were sent, equipped only with light casual war and sparkling clean sneakers, and cheerful music from the Iphones, and escorted by minicipality staff (witness: “tie-wearers”) to the flood aid in the Eutighofer Street, where their help was basically not needed anymore. „We all did not believe our eyes what was suddenly happening“, says the stunned RZ reader Wolfgang B. Many other citizens of Weststadt too indignatedly approached the Rems newspaper about this “show initiative of the town” on Thursday and even showed videos from their mobiles of this unbelievable satire.
    Allegedly the disgruntled residents were about to chase the camera team off house and garden because of this strange move. The refugees were even coerced to fetch back from the containers flood trash that the residents had long salvaged, to again carry it out of the basements, geared toward the media. The citizens were so outraged hat, according to reports, there were fisticuffs against the foreign camera team.
    Town hall press spokesman Markus Herrmann reassures: This action has indeed been unfortunate. He asks for understanding: the camera team from Austria had arrived too late, and one had only intended to reenact for them that the refugees indeed supported the flood victims. The indignant residents of the Weststadt though do not know of any such support. Rather, they felt quite on their own until Wednesday.
    According to reports, true helpers were not put in the Spotlight like the unfortunate refugees, who, a few minutes after their TV appearance, took to their heels. The clear opinion of many flood victims of the Weststadt: Perhaps well intended by the Lord Mayor, but nevertheless absolutely out of order, this weird initiative.

    UPDATE 1
    Junge Freiheit
    UPDATE: The ORF (Austrian public TV) partially denies town spokesman Hermann’s account towards the JF. An ORF spokesperson confirmed he did send a camera team to Schwäbisch Gmünd. However, it was not involved in the staging. It must have been a different station. Town spokesman Hermann was not available anymore on Friday noon to clarify which TV station it actually was.

    UPDATE 2
    Press Release of the town Schwäbisch Gmünd
    June 03 2016
    Gmünder town leadership does not instruct media staging
    Regarding the Media report about a flood piece by a TV team in Schwäbisch Gmünd the municipality makes it clear that the Gmünd town leadership did not instruct a media staging

    Schwäbisch Gmünd (sv). The shooting by a camera team after the tempest disaster has caused irritation among residents in the Eutighofer Street in Schwäbisch Gmünd. Regarding this, the town administration clarifies:
    The team had arrived late for the shooting after the tempest disaster. As the largest amount of the acute assistance of the disaster night and the following day had already been completed at that point, the TV journalists asked to re-enact a few assistance scenes at the access road to town, where the film team still found furnishings affected by the water damage. The wish existed to specifically film refugees, as those had lent a hand on another occasion in the previous days. At this wish, staff of the Gmünd refugee care connected with refugees. There has been at no point an instruction by the Gmünd town leadership, especially not by Lord Mayor Richard Arnold, to stage an enactment. The Lord Mayor and the department heads were not informed of this shooting and of the wish by the camera team, and would not have had the opportunity, the wish, or the time to occupy themselves with details of a media request in the commotion of these events and days.

  25. Düsseldorf terror plot ‘bigger than previously realized’ (thelocal, June 3, 2016)

    “The Isis plot to attacks the capital of North Rhine-Westphalia was bigger than previously assumed, with ten terrorists supposed to murder people with bombs and guns, local media report.

    According to Spiegel, a suspect in police custody has admitted to authorities that ten people were supposed to be involved in the plot.

    On Thursday three men were arrested in Düsseldorf, after a fourth plot member had turned himself in to authorities in Paris in February.

    Three of the men, all of them Syrian nationals are alleged to have arrived in Germany in 2015 along the Balkan route, the route taken by refugees fleeing the Syrian civil war.

    The six additional members of the plot were supposed to join them at a later point, Saleh A. who is in custody in Paris told investigators.

    According to his account, two of the group were supposed to blow themselves up in the Altstadt district, the other men were then to attack more civilians with guns and explosives…”

  26. Paris police: We can’t cope with fan zones AND matches (thelocal, June 3, 2016)

    “Police in Paris say fan zones should be closed in the Paris when Euro 2016 matches are taking place because “exhausted” officers are already overstretched.

    The Paris police chief has proposed that a fan zone in the heart of the capital be shut when Euro 2016 matches are played in the city’s two stadiums.

    Police chief Michel Cadot cited the “exhaustion” of overstretched officers and the threat of terrorism, in a letter to Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve seen by AFP on Thursday.

    Paris is one of nine cities hosting the month-long football tournament from June 10 and a fan zone at the foot of the Eiffel Tower is set to accommodate some 90,000 supporters during matches.

    In an earlier letter sent to Cazeneuve, Cadot also expressed concerns about other events during the championships, such as music festivals.

    Former president and opposition chief Nicolas Sarkozy has called for the fan zones to be closed.

    “We have other things for our police to do, with the current risk, than keep a watch on fan zones,” Sarkozy said.

    The French police fears came after the US issued a warning of the “risk of potential terrorist attacks throughout Europe, targeting major events”….”

  27. First Spanish-speaking Mosque Opens in the United States (thelocal, June 3, 2016)

    “Rabat- Earlier in the month, Latino Muslims gathered to celebrate Cinco De Mayo at the only Spanish-speaking mosque in the country, according to Muslim Girl, an organization that focuses on Muslim/Islamic news.

    The newly opened mosque, where Cinco De Mayo was celebrated, Centro Islamico, is located in Houston, Texas. Islam in Spanish, an education non-profit organization, was founded by a Columbian convert…”

  28. Washington Applauds Morocco’s International Leadership in Counter-terrorism (moroccoworldnews, June 3, 2016)

    “The United States “applaud” Morocco’s regional and international “leadership” in counter-terrorism, and “sincerely appreciate Morocco’s active engagement to address security measures in Africa, the Mediterranean, and around the world,” US ambassador to Rabat, Dwight L. Bush, said Thursday.

    “The United States government recognizes Morocco’s continuous commitment to strengthening its counter-terrorism efforts, particularly its leadership in international bodies such as the Global Counter-terrorism Forum and its acclaimed strategy to counter violent extremism at all levels,” Bush said in a statement issued following the release of the Country reports on terrorism.

    “We applaud Morocco as a leader at both the regional and global levels and sincerely appreciate Morocco’s active engagement to address security measures in Africa, the Mediterranean, and around the world,” he added.

    The report of the State Department, polished Thursday morning, has lauded Morocco’s “comprehensive” counter-terrorism strategy, underlining the country’s adherence to human rights standards and the increased transparency of law enforcement procedures.”

  29. Since 9/11, Pakistan lost $118.3b to terror (tribune, June 3, 2016)

    “Terrorism, fuelled by cross-border and foreign sponsorships, has driven up losses for Pakistan to $118.3 billion since 2001, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said Thursday.

    Unveiling the Economic Survey of Pakistan 2015-16 in Islamabad, the minister revealed how the country suffered losses, both direct and indirect, worth $5.6 billion losses in the outgoing fiscal year which ends on June 30…”

  30. Bernie Sanders’ current DNC appointee once justified this.
    The appointee lobbied for an accused Jordanian murderer who had fled from Israeli prosecution to Chicago on a non-immigrant visa [obtained] at the request of his sister to help resolve some marital problems. Per attorney Stephen M. Flatow, “Zogby charged that extraditing Eain would create a dangerous precedent for handing over individuals accused of “political crimes.”

    Sanders chose five of the [17 Democratic party platform] committee’s members, one fewer than Clinton.

  31. State Department refuses to reopen probe into edited video

    The State Department won’t reopen an investigation to determine who ordered portions deleted from a video of a 2013 press briefing, despite pressure from Capitol Hill, the agency said Friday.

    “We believe we have conducted an inquiry into this incident,” spokesman Mark Toner told reporters.

    “We have exhausted our efforts to look into the incident and responsibility.”

    The State Department’s position does not mean that its inspector general, a separate entity, will not examine the incident, as the head of the House Foreign Affairs Committee has asked it to do.

    The internal watchdog “will decide for itself whether it wants to look into this incident,” Toner said.

    Nonetheless, the stance is likely to anger critics of the Obama administration, who accuse it of turning a blind eye to an attempted cover-up.

    Earlier this week, the department revealed that an unknown official within the public affairs office ordered the scrubbing of roughly eight minutes from a video of the briefing, which included a discussion about negotiations related to the Iran nuclear deal and whether the administration has misled the public about the timing of those talks.

    According to the State Department, the official who made the cut from the YouTube video did so on orders from someone in the public affairs office but that no one remembered who. The official ruled out former spokeswoman Jen Psaki, who was in the video, the department said. The edits were apparently made on the same day of the Dec. 2, 2013, press briefing, but the deleted section has since been restored.

    The State Department originally credited the missing minutes to a “glitch,” before reversing itself this week.

    Toner said Friday that phone records would have been deleted a day after the call had been made to edit the tape, so it was impossible to trace it that way.

    The State Department has said there were no rules against editing of the video; however, the officials put new policies in place this week, since the intentional editing came to light.

    While the YouTube video had been edited, the State Department also kept a separate archived copy of the briefing that had not been edited, and an online transcript also included the full, correct exchange.

    Over the last day and a half, several prominent members of Congress have scolded the State Department over the episode, and demanded a full accounting.

    The House Oversight Committee has launched an investigation into the episode, asking for a range of documents from the State Department. The head of the Foreign Affairs Committee also went to the inspector general on Friday, looking for it to open its own inquiry.
    Outrage grows following editing of State Dept. video records

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