Reader’s links for October 1 – 2016

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

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

About Eeyore

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

67 Replies to “Reader’s links for October 1 – 2016”

  1. 50 asylum-seekers stage riot, attack guards at refugee center in Berlin (RT, Sep 30, 2016)

    “Some 50 refugees staged a riot at an accommodation facility in the northern district of Reinickendorf in Berlin, knocking down doors, damaging furniture, stealing personal belongings, and physically attacking security guards, local media reports.

    Security personnel turned on the lights in the building late Thursday night after it was discovered that one of their offices had been broken into and looted. Several residents of the refugee center broke down the door to the security room and stole some personal belongings of the employees, German newspaper Berliner Morgenpost reported.

    Some refugees punched and kicked the security guards. Some of the guards’ personal cars, parked nearby, were vandalized. Security personnel called police, and around thirty police officers arrived to rescue them and restore order.

    Police have launched an investigation. Possible charges include disturbing the peace, property damage, burglary, and attempted aggravated assault, DPA news agency reported.

    Most of the attackers are believed to have been intoxicated…”

  2. French mayor tries to shut down pro-migrant charity claiming it is spreading ‘communism’ (express, Sep 30, 2016)

    “A FRENCH mayor who supports Marie Le Pen sent police officers and a bailiff to evacuate the headquarters of a local charity in the early hours of today.

    Fabien Engelmann is the far-right mayor of Hayange, a northern town located near the Franco-Belgian border.

    He claims Secours Populaire employees, whose job it is to help fight poverty, are using the organisation’s “charitable reputation” to meddle in politics and impose their far-left beliefs.

    Mr Engelmann is also accusing Anne Duflot-Allievi, the charity’s regional president, of spreading pro-migrant propaganda after finding out she had helped an anti-nationalist association host a dinner for refugees.

    He said: “These people are promoting communist ideology.”…”

  3. British mosque under investigation for ‘supporting the KILLINGS of minority Muslim sect’ (express, Oct 1, 2016)

    “A BRITISH mosque is being investigated for reportedly “distributing literature” promoting hatred towards a minority Muslim sect.

    Stockwell Green Mosque in London is being used by the Khatme Nabuwat organisation, which allegedly calls for the death of all Ahmadis.

    The Ahmadi sect are recognised in the Western world as taking a stand against terrorists and extremists.

    British Government officials have only decided to take action against the Khatme Nabuwat group after the BBC published leaflets found at the mosque this April which called for “capital punishment” for all Ahmadis who refused to convert to mainstream Islam within three days…”

  4. Historian: Crooked School Lessons Present Islam as Peaceful, Demonise Christians (breitbart, Sep 30, 2016)

    “A historian has slammed the double standards employed in French schools which present Muslim conquerors as peaceful and brilliant, and Christians as backwards oppressors.

    Against the backdrop of terror attacks and rising Islamic extremism worldwide, teacher and author Barbara Lefebvre contends that education on Islam has “never been more necessary”. But the historian, who has published several books on the Holocaust, argues that textbooks’ sanitisation of Muslim conquests and their presentation of an Islamic supremacist version of history is completely unhelpful.

    The historian says textbooks focus on the “peaceful coexistence” of Muslims and Christians and that official guidelines tell teachers not to study “events that tend to emphasise the warlike contacts”.

    She draws attention to the fact that, incredibly, books use the term “resuming control” when describing Mohammed’s conquests of previously non-Muslim areas. This presents as legitimate “reconquests” the warlord’s bloody takeovers of regions that were never previously Muslim, nor his territory.

    This directive is ignored, she notes, when it comes to the Crusades, as prominent textbooks title their chapter on the subject of Christian self-defence “Violent Holy Wars”. This period of history, and the Spanish people’s reconquest of their own country, is told through a series of bloodthirsty “crimes”, Lefebvre notes.

    The focal point of peaceful cooperation between the two religions is exemplified by trading relations in the French curriculum. However, Lefebvre observes that even this narrative follows a Muslim supremacist agenda as textbooks “unanimously describe Islamic civilisation as ‘brilliant’” and claim that all the West is hugely in debt to Arabic science.

    To hammer home the discredited idea that Muslims were wise educators to Europe’s ignorant cave-dwellers, the professor discloses that textbooks quote a Muslim occupier as saying: “This country does not know what science is and those who lived knew no one here who had made himself illustrious by his love for knowledge.”

    Lefebvre notes that, to emphasise this one-sided narrative, students are asked to “show that the presence of Muslims in Andalusia helps develop science and Greek philosophy in the West” in their assessment.

    The professor describes as “disconcerting” the fact that textbooks rely entirely on Muslim sources for accounts of relations between Muslims and non-Muslims.

    As a result, pupils in French classrooms are taught that non-Muslims welcomed being conquered and invaded as “a blessing”. Several textbooks, Lefebvre notes, claim “[Non-Muslims] opened the gates of their city with the singers and the musicians began to play and paid the poll tax”.

    “In textbooks, it appears that in Saudi after 632 everyone became Muslim like magic without pressure”, she writes, asserting that so many under Muslim rule had only a “choice between conversion and death”.

    By focusing on an idealised image of “peaceful coexistence” under Muslim rule, Lefebvre blasts the narrative French schools project by completely neglecting to clarify the conditions under which non-Muslims were forced to live.

    She notes that “like other ancient or medieval conquests” the Islamisation of non-Muslim areas “meant dispossessing the indigenous of their sovereignty”. For reference, the historian points to how when Christians in Toledo tried to resist this process they were mutilated and crucified by the invading forces.

    Further, she argues that to summarise the life of non-Muslims living under Islamic rule as being protected in return for a tax is completely dishonest.

    “If textbooks were willing to describe the humiliating terms of [non-Muslims living under Islamic rule]” Lefebvre contends that it would be clear to students that Christians were “stigmatised” and made third class citizens in every respect under Muslim rule.

    Lefebvre notes that while textbooks devote whole pages to crimes committed by Europeans, Arab crimes are completely omitted. A clear example of this, she points out, is that textbooks neglect to mention Muslims’ 13 centuries-long enslavement of Africans.

    Contrasting Islamic slavery with the European slave trade, Lefebvre highlights the fact that Arabs would castrate male captives and that the majority died as a result, which is why African slaves left little genetic trace in Muslim countries.

    The professor argues that it’s wrong that the issue of Islamic slavery is completely absent from classrooms when children learn that the suffering of Africans throughout the centuries “comes down to the Transatlantic Slave Trade”.

    Furthermore, she brings up the fact that it’s impossible to find any history of Arab Muslims opposing slavery, “unlike Europeans who fought for the abolition of this inhuman trade against their slave contemporaries”.

    Lefebvre contends that the reason the government insists on the “glorification” of Islamic history in French classrooms is because multiculturalism “has reached an identity point of tension close to breaking”.

    The professor argues that textbooks’ sanitising of Islam is counterproductive in that the issue of jihad is never addressed when from the religion’s dawn it has served to justify “imperialist conquest made of looting, killing and settlement”.

    By employing such obvious double standards, Lefebvre says the history curriculum is failing in its duty to enlighten students, “to make them informed citizens and to develop in them the critical spirit to analyse historical sources and not just learn [an agenda]”.”

  5. Polish Defense Minister Accuses Russia of Inventing Islamic Terrorism (sputniknews, Oct 1, 2016)

    “In a letter to the CEPA forum in Washington DC, Antoni Macierewicz, Poland’s Defense Minister, accused Russia of creating and supporting radical Islamic terrorism…

    Possibly unaware that prominent Islamic terrorist organizations, including Daesh, are outlawed in Russia, Macierewicz wrote, “We should ask ourselves… a question: is it possible that Russia now influences or even creates radical Islamic terrorism or jihadism of these days. The answer to this question can be fundamental for our civilization to survive.”…”

  6. Kerry in leaked audio: “I lost the argument” for use of force in Syria (CNN, Oct 1, 2016)

    “Secretary of State John Kerry’s frustration with the failure of American diplomacy was on display as he defended US efforts to help end the five-year civil war in Syria during a meeting last week with a group of Syrian civilians, according to an audio recording obtained by CNN…

    “I think you’re looking at three people, four people in the administration. I lost the argument. I’ve argued for the use of force. I’m the guy who stood up and announced that we’re going to attack Assad for the use of weapons,” Kerry is heard telling the Syrian attendees, referring to internal deliberations within the administration of President Barack Obama that followed Assad’s use of chemical weapons in 2013.

    Kerry also faulted Congress for failing to support such a retaliatory strike, saying, “The bottom line is that Congress refused even to vote to allow that.”

    “We have a Congress that will not authorize our use of force,” he added, explaining that a new military intervention would be difficult to bring about…”

  7. ‘Jihadi yells Allahu Akbar as he mows vehicle towards pedestrians – missing them all’ (express Oct 1, 2016)

    “AN ALLEGED jihadi who drove a car into a crowd while shouting “Allahu Akbar” has failed in his perverted mission – after failing to hit a single pedestrian, according to reports.

    A 21-year-old Turkish man has been arrested following the incident in the Austrian capital of Vienna.

    During his arrest, the Turk was shouting “Please, Allah, help me, please, Allahu Akbar”, according to police spokesman Thomas Keiblinger.

    The officer added: “He drove straight at the pedestrians. It was very tough for them, they only managed to narrowly escape by quickly jumping aside.”

    A Koran was found in the vehicle used by the Turk in his failed attack, which he allegedly borrowed from his dad.

    An investigation into the incident is underway…”

      • The three best guesses on what is wrong with her are (in the order I heard them: Parkinson’s, Epilepsy and Cancer I don’t know which if any is the problem. The last (cancer) comes with the idea that she is hanging on trying to get elected before she either dies or resigns so another uber liberal Kaine will take over as President. They aren’t the smartest people in the world but they know that 8 to 16 years of Trump/Pence will undo a lot of the damage they have done to the US and with luck reduce the debt by major amounts.

  8. US cuts cord on internet oversight

    Washington (AFP) – The US government on Saturday ended its formal oversight role over the internet, handing over management of the online address system to a global non-profit entity.

    The US Commerce Department announced that its contract had expired with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which manages the internet’s so-called “root zone.”

    That leaves ICANN as a self-regulating organization that will be operated by the internet’s “stakeholders” — engineers, academics, businesses, non-government and government groups.

    The move is part of a decades-old plan by the US to “privatize” the internet, and backers have said it would help maintain its integrity around the world.

    US and ICANN officials have said the contract had given Washington a symbolic role as overseer or the internet’s “root zone” where new online domains and addresses are created.

  9. Democrats object to Chick-fil-A voter registration drive

    A controversy is clucking in Pinellas County over chicken sandwiches, sweet tea and voter registration cards.

    The Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County are crying foul over Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections Deborah Clark’s decision to hold voter registration drives at nine Chick-fil-A locations. Chick-fil-A, the fast-food chain known for putting faith ahead of profits, supports conservative causes.

  10. China paper says U.S., South Korea will ‘pay the price’ for planned missile system

    EIJING (Reuters) – The United States and South Korea are destined to “pay the price” for their decision to deploy an advanced missile defense system which will inevitably prompt a “counter attack”, China’s top newspaper said on Saturday.

    Tension on the Korean peninsula has been high this year, beginning with North Korea’s fourth nuclear test in January, which was followed by a satellite launch, a string of tests of various missiles, and its fifth and largest nuclear test last month.

    In July, South Korea agreed with the United States to deploy the U.S. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system to protect against any North Korean threats.

    South Korea aims to deploy the system on a golf course, a defense ministry official said on Friday.

    But the plan has angered China, which worries that THAAD’s powerful radar would compromise its security and do nothing to lower temperatures on the Korean peninsula.

    In a commentary, the ruling Communist Party’s official People’s Daily said China’s opposition to THAAD would never change as it was a serious threat to the regional strategic security balance.

    • Considering that PRC has ordered Russian S-400 missiles and that such missiles have “ABM capabilities of the S-400 system are near the maximum allowed under the (now void) Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty,” this is a rather self-serving statement.

  11. Spain’s political deadlock at critical point as Socialists decide future

    MADRID (Reuters) – Spain’s bitterly divided Socialists met on Saturday to decide whether to oust party leader Pedro Sanchez, a step that could pave the way for a new government to be formed after months of political deadlock.

    The leadership of the Socialist PSOE, Spain’s main opposition party, has been split in two by the resignation earlier this week of 17 members of a 38-member executive committee who demanded Sanchez’s resignation to help break the nine-month impasse.

    Sanchez has led a stand-off with acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s conservative People’s Party (PP), which won the most votes but fell short of a majority in two inconclusive elections, and the dispute has frustrated attempts to form a government.

    If no government is formed before the end of October, a third election will be called in December.

  12. India, Pakistan soldiers exchange fire across frontier, no casualties

    ISLAMABAD/SRINAGAR, India (Reuters) – India and Pakistan exchanged fire across their de facto border in the Kashmir region on Saturday, in minor skirmishes that come at a time of heightened tension between the nuclear-armed neighbors.

    Army officers from both countries blamed each other for starting the firing, which took place in the morning along the so-called “Line of Control” dividing them in the disputed Himalayan region. No casualties were reported.

    The exchange came two days after New Delhi said Indian troops had crossed into Pakistan’s side of Kashmir and killed suspected militants in a “surgical strike”, an operation Pakistan says never took place.

    That was in response to an attack last month on an army base in India-controlled Kashmir that killed 19 soldiers and which New Delhi blamed on militants who crossed from Pakistan. Islamabad denied any involvement.

    “Pakistani troops today violated (the) ceasefire along Pallanwala sector of Akhnoor area of Jammu,” a senior Indian army officer said on Saturday.

  13. Japan, India to sign nuclear cooperation deal in November: report

    OKYO (Reuters) – Japan and India are likely to sign a civil nuclear cooperation pact during a visit to Japan by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in mid-November, the Mainichi newspaper reported on Saturday.

    The governments of Asia’s second-and third-largest economies are leaning toward holding a summit meeting between Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe, the report said, citing unidentified diplomatic sources from both nations.

    The two leaders last December reached a basic agreement for cooperation in the peaceful use of nuclear energy, but they stopped short of signing the agreement, citing outstanding technical and legal differences.

    Japan, the only country to have suffered a nuclear attack, has been demanding additional non-proliferation guarantees from India, which has a nuclear weapons program, before exporting nuclear reactors.

  14. LAT- Russia warns U.S. against attack on Syrian forces

    Russia has warned the United States against carrying out any attacks on Syrian government forces, saying it would have repercussions across the Middle East.

    Russian news agencies quoted Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova as saying that a U.S. intervention against the Syrian army “will lead to terrible, tectonic consequences, not only on the territory of this country, but also in the region on the whole.”

    She says regime change in Syria would create a vacuum that would be “quickly filled” by “terrorists of all stripes.”

    U.S.-Russian tensions over Syria have escalated since the breakdown of a cease-fire last month, with each side blaming the other for its failure. Syrian government forces backed by Russian warplanes have launched a major onslaught on rebel-held parts of the northern city of Aleppo.

    RT-Direct aggression by US against Damascus to cause ‘tectonic shift’ in Middle East – Moscow

    If the US launches a military campaign to oust the Syrian government, it would further fracture the country and have tremendous negative long-term consequence for the entire region, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova warned.

    “If the US launches a direct aggression against Damascus and the Syrian Army, it would cause a terrible, tectonic shift not only in the country, but in the entire region,” Maria Zakharova said during a talk show, which is to be aired fully later on Saturday and has been cited by RIA.

    With no government in Damascus, there will be a power vacuum in Syria, which “so-called moderates, who are, in reality, not moderate at all but just terrorists of all flavors, would fill; and there will be no dealing with them,” the diplomat predicted.

    “And later it would be aggravated the way it happened in Iraq. We know that [Saddam Hussein’s] Iraqi Army became the basis of the Islamic State. Everything that both the [US-led] coalition and Russia are fighting now stems from it,” Zakharova said.

    Russia and the US are accusing each other over the collapse of the ceasefire which was signed last month, but has failed. The US says Moscow did not do enough to win the trust of rebel forces and to prevent the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad from attacking his opponents. Russia says Washington was incapable of separating ‘moderate rebels’ from terrorist groups and keeping them in check for the truce to take hold.

    With the collapse of the deal, the Syrian government launched an offensive on rebel-held areas of Aleppo, a city divided between the Syrian Army and dozens of armed groups, including Al Qaeda off-shoot Al-Nusra Front.

    The US acknowledged that it had not been going after Al-Nusra Front for months because the terrorists intermingled with ‘moderates’ and the civilian population. At the same time, it accused Moscow and Damascus of war crimes, citing civilian deaths caused by the renewed hostilities in Aleppo.

    Russia has voiced concern that the US was deliberately shielding Al-Nusra Front from military action by Russia and Syria, hoping that the terrorist group would help oust the Syrian government.

    Russia: Lavrov accuses the US of ‘tacitly’ supporting Al-Nusra during BBC interview

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov accused the US of implicitly supporting “terrorist organisations” during an interview with the BBC, conducted in Moscow on Friday. “I think that if they do not present any evidence to the contrary, they either are driven by Nusra [former Al-Qaeda ally al-Nusra Front] or they tacitly support this terrorist organisation,” stated the minister.

    The Russian diplomat stated that the current US administration “might make history by being the administration which gave rise and support to Nusra.”

    • Bosnian niqab-wearing politician seeks office to ‘reduce prejudice’ & help poor (RT, Oct 1, 2016)

      “A niqab-wearing politician in Bosnia seeks to become the first fully veiled woman in the Balkan country to run for public office. If elected, Indira Sinanovic says she wants to help the poor and “break down prejudice” experienced by those wearing niqabs.

      The 37-year-old mother of two is running in her hometown of Zavidovici, which is about 100 kilometers (62 miles) north of the capital Sarajevo. She wears the niqab, which is a veil worn by Muslim women that covers the whole face, except the eyes.

      Speaking ahead of the election on Sunday, she said that she wants to help “socially vulnerable families” as she has become aware of their problems after carrying out humanitarian work. She also says that she wants to stop discrimination against women who wear the veil.

      “I will try to break down discrimination and the distorted image of women who wear the hijab. People need to have the chance to meet us and to get to know who we are. My experience shows that, after knowing us, people always say they are sorry for having prejudices and for perceiving us as something we are not. We are ordinary citizens,” she said, as cited by RT’s video agency Ruptly.

      Sinanovic, who aside from her humanitarian work is employed as a journalist, believes that if she is elected, she will have the opportunity to meet more people, while also being able to help people “know more about us.”

      Bosnia, which has a large indigenous Muslim population, due to having once been part of the Ottoman Empire, has no laws against members of the public wearing the niqab or the burqa. Sinanovic, however, says she is alarmed by a recent ruling that says court officials are no longer allowed to wear headscarves.

      “It’s the basic right of every citizen,” she said, adding that she has suffered from discrimination in the past and has been called names on the street such as ‘ninja’ or ‘terrorist,’ and has been told, ‘go to Afghanistan’ or ‘go to Syria.’

      Although Islam has been traditionally liberal in Bosnia, which is an ethnic mix of Orthodox Christians, Catholics, and Muslims, there has been a rise in radical Islam which partly stems from the influence of Saudi-sponsored mosques, which began to appear following the Bosnian War in the 1990s…”

  15. Tear gas, water cannon used in Calais as pro-migrant rally attempts to proceed amid ban

    French police try to disperse a pro-migrant demonstration in Calais with a water cannon and tear gas, a Ruptly live feed showed. The protest has been called despite a ban introduced by the mayor on any gatherings concerning migrants.

    Dozens of people were seen marching along a road in the northern French city, carrying banners, chanting slogans, dancing, and playing musical instruments, according to footage from Ruptly video agency.

    Pro-migrant rally goes ahead in Calais despite ban

    • Channel 4 – Pepsi’s journey: from the Philippines to the Calais Jungle

      From working as a medic in a Filipino separatist group to become the self-styled Queen of the Calais Jungle. This is the dramatic journey of Pepsi, who now identifies as trans.

  16. reuters – ITALY – Police clear out Rome’s ‘Gloomy Street’ migrant camp

    Italian police on Friday cleared out the “Gloomy Street” transit camp in central Rome where thousands of migrants have slept over the past year as they made their way toward northern Europe.

    The Baobab centre near Rome’s Tiburtina train station was shut down in December, but volunteers quickly set up a camp on the street in front of the old shelter, providing tents, chemical toilets, mattresses and meals.

    An estimated 60,000 migrants have slept there over the past 12 months and volunteers said about 300 migrants spent the night in Via Cupa, which means Gloomy Street in English, on Thursday.

    Police moved in after dawn, rounding up dozens of people for identification. They later hauled away the mattresses, toilets and food.

    “Shutting down the camp doesn’t solve the problem. There will still be migrants looking for a place to sleep tonight,” Andrea Costa, one of the founding members of the Baobab shelter, told Reuters.

    Italy has been on the front line of Europe’s immigration crisis, taking in more than 450,000 migrants who have arrived by boat from North Africa since the start of 2014, official figures show.

    The state provides shelter to about 160,000 asylum seekers – eight times more than it did in 2013 – in centres up and down the country, but there are no state-funded shelters for migrants in transit. According to European Union law, they should seek asylum in Italy or be sent home.

    Residents and Baobab volunteers have been calling on Rome’s government to provide a more suitable location. The new city government, run by mayor Virginia Raggi, told Reuters last month a solution would be found by Aug. 15.

    While police have cleared migrants out of Gloomy Street on several occasions in the past, they have always left the camp itself intact.

    A residents’ group hailed what appeared to be an end to the shelter. “Even though it was way overdue, they put an end to the mess that Gloomy Street had become,” the group said on Facebook.

    Costa said volunteers and activists were seeking new locations for the camp, including an abandoned fishery school nearby, but did not rule out staging protests in front of city hall or occupying a new space.

  17. Roadside Bomb Hits Security Vehicle in Egypt’s Sinai, 9 Hurt (abcnews, Oct 1, 2016)

    “Police in the turbulent north of Egypt’s Sinai peninsula say nine policemen have been wounded when their armored personnel carrier was hit by a roadside bomb planted by suspected Islamic State militants.

    A statement by local police says Saturday’s attack took place outside the border town of Rafah.

    The attack is the latest in a war of attrition waged by militants led by the Islamic State’s affiliate in Sinai, where security forces have battled insurgents for years. The insurgency by the militants in Sinai grew more intense after the 2013 ouster of elected president, Mohammed Morsi, who is an Islamist.

    Also Saturday, police say the severed head of a man who had been abducted by suspected militants for his alleged cooperation with authorities turned up in Rafah.”

  18. Somali Police: Car Bomb Kills 2 at Restaurant in Mogadishu (abcnews, Oct 1, 2016)

    “A Somali police officer says a car bomb blew up at the entrance of a restaurant in the Somali capital of Mogadishu, killing two people.

    Capt. Mohamed Hussein said the blast Saturday occurred at the Blue Sky restaurant close to the presidential palace.

    There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the bombing but the Islamic extremist group of al-Shabab often carries out such attacks…”

  19. Russia Warns Against US Attack on Syrian Forces (abcnews, Oct 1, 2016)

    “Russia warned the United States Saturday against carrying out any attacks on Syrian government forces, saying it would have repercussions across the Middle East as government forces captured a hill on the edge of the northern city of Aleppo under the cover of airstrikes.

    Russian news agencies quoted Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova as saying that a U.S. intervention against the Syrian army “will lead to terrible, tectonic consequences not only on the territory of this country but also in the region on the whole.”

    She said regime change in Syria would create a vacuum that would be “quickly filled” by “terrorists of all stripes.”…”

  20. Syria conflict: Aleppo hospital ‘hit by barrel bombs’ (BBC, Oct 1. 2016)

    “An air raid on the rebel-held eastern half of the Syrian city of Aleppo has hit the area’s largest hospital for the second time in a matter of days, a medical charity says.

    The Syrian American Medical Society, which supports the hospital, said it had been struck by barrel bombs.

    The same facility was hit in a similar attack on Wednesday.

    There are also reports of Russian-backed Syrian government forces hitting Aleppo’s historic Old City.

    And clashes between government troops and rebels on the ground are said to be occurring in several Aleppo neighbourhoods…”

  21. Local Muslims Wary of Hungary’s Anti-Migrant Referendum (abcnews, Oct 1, 2016)

    “Muslims in Hungary say they are wary of the government’s anti-migrant referendum this weekend, which polls suggest has boosted xenophobic feelings.

    The government, contending that there is a direct link between migrants and terrorism, is seeking a popular mandate in Sunday’s vote for its opposition to accepting any mandatory European Union quotas for resettling asylum seekers.

    “I’m starting to feel that my own homeland is repudiating me,” says Timea Nagy, a Hungarian Muslim.

    Prime Minister Viktor Orban has said Hungarians have “no problems” with the local Muslim community, but he believes any EU quotas to relocate asylum seekers, including many Muslims, would destroy Hungary’s Christian identity and culture.

    Orban hopes that a rejection of EU quotas in the referendum will be mimicked by others and force Brussels to reconsider the scheme…”

  22. ISIS IDIOTS: 16 jihadis receive epic KARMA as suicide belt malfunctions and blows them up (express, Oct 1, 2016)

    “BLUNDERING Islamic State militants were served a dose of their own twisted medicine in Iraq this week after a gang of fanatics were blown up when a suicide belt they were handling malfunctioned.

    Sixteen members of the terror group, which claims to have a highly-trained and ruthlessly efficient army of battle-hardened warriors, died in the accident.

    Senior commanders were among those killed in the explosion in Hawija, southwest of Kirkuk in northern Iraq.

    Iraqi TV news station Alsumaria said an explosion took place during a meeting of ISIS members in al-Mahawes village in Hawija district…”

  23. ‘She opened the door to ISIS and Islamic terrorism’ Farage slams Merkel’s migrant policy (express, Oct 1, 2016)

    “NIGEL FARAGE has slammed Angela Merkel for her poor handling of the migrant crisis.

    Speaking to Fox Business Network, Mr Farage branded the German chancellor’s actions as “great historical mistakes”.

    He said: “What Angela Merkel did last year will go down as the great historical mistakes made by any Western Democratic leader.”

    The former Ukip leader was discussing Hillary Clinton’s comments in which she revealed Ms Merkel was one of her favourite world leaders…”

  24. Georgia: ‘Vatican is a spiritual aggressor’ – Orthodox Church faction decries Bergoglio’s visit

    Dozens of Georgian Orthodox Church believers took to the streets of Tbilisi, on Saturday, to protest against a solemn mass conducted by Bergoglio who is on official two-day visit to the country.

  25. Quebec terror suspect kept gun licence and kept buying guns

    A Montreal man suspected of travelling to Syria kept his firearms licence and legally purchased guns after his return to Canada.

    MONTREAL—A young Montreal man suspected of having gone to Syria and adhering to “extremist Islamist” ideologies was able to keep his firearms licence for years and to legally purchase semi-automatic rifles while he was the subject of a terrorism investigation by the RCMP, a La Presse investigation has found.

    The case of Samy Nefkha Bahri raises numerous questions about the control of firearms in Canada and the communication between police forces.

    The police believe that the man went to Syria to participate in terrorist activities in 2012. Nefkha Bahri said, rather, that he left Canada “because he was sick of the surveillance.”

    “I was literally being recorded everywhere I went,” he said in an interview.

    Before his departure, a judge authorized a search warrant for his parents’ home as well as a wiretap on the telephone line. To obtain authorization for the search warrant, the police had to demonstrate that they had serious reasons to believe that their target was involved in terrorism. It would still take two and a half years for authorities to revoke his right to own weapons in January 2015.

    The Montrealer has not been charged with any terrorism offences. Last year, he was charged with intimidating a Crown prosecutor assigned to a terrorism case. A publication ban prevents reporting of any details in that case. He is awaiting trial.

    He has attempted to contest the revocation of his firearms licence before the courts. It’s a question of principle because he feels that he has been treated unjustly, according to his lawyer Kaven Morasse. He maintains that he is non-violent, never intended to use his guns for malicious purposes and never encouraged or supported a terrorist group.

    Nefkha Bahri appeared on the RCMP radar around 2012, according to several sources close to the case, who are not authorized to speak publicly. He was part of the same wave of departures that year as the young man who was photographed in December 2015 with Justin Trudeau.

    At the time, his speech was judged to be radical and his marked interest for firearms caught the attention of the authorities. He obtained his firearms licence without any restrictions in January 2012, at the age of 23, according to judicial documents at the Montreal courthouse viewed by La Presse.

    The next month, the young man legally purchased is first long gun: a Simonov SKS semi-automatic. He then began training with a group of friends at a firing range in the Montreal area.

    “I had been intending to hunt for several years,” he said. “I never had the time to go because I had too many things going on at the same time.”

    In June 2012, the RCMP conducted a search warrant at his parents’ home. Nefkha Bahri was arrested and questioned, but never charged. He retained his gun and his firearms permit.

    The young man was also put under surveillance. He confirmed this himself. The police had to justify this intrusion into his private life by establishing serious reasons to believe he was linked to terrorism. But there were no steps taken to remove his guns. The firearms controller, a Sûreté du Québec inspector who manages gun licences in Quebec, wasn’t advised of the investigation.

    A short while later, Nefkha Bahri left on a trip. It was a months-long trip during which he visited several countries, including Turkey.

    “I was always interested in Turkey and the country was really calm,” he explained in the interview.

    Did he visit Syria? Nefkha Bahri refused to answer the question.

    A police source confirmed that terrorism investigators suspect he crossed the border into Syria, but authorities have not been able to prove it.

    Upon his return to Canada, he was able to keep his rifle.

    Several months later, the young man decided of his own volition to get rid of the weapon. He called 911 and asked to have Montreal police officers come to his parents’ home.

    “It was months after having come back and it’s just that the gun was rusting,” he said.

    “On Jan. 15, 2014, at 12:15 p.m., a 25-year-old citizen called us because he wanted to hand in his firearm. The police officers arrived and took possession of the long gun. There was nothing criminal about the matter,” said Sgt. Manuel Couture, a spokesperson with the Montreal police. The weapon was registered to the young man, who had a valid licence, police said.

    Shortly after, he returned to purchase two long guns: another SKS semi-automatic; and a rifle of another model. Nefkha Bahri also requested that his gun licence be modified to include restricted weapons. This category includes handguns and some models of semi-automatic rifles.

    The firearms controller refused the request, even though there was no knowledge at the time of the RCMP’s terrorism investigation. Nefkha Bahri was still able to keep the permit he had obtained in 2011 as well as the two guns he had just purchased.

    It took until January 2015 for the authorities to intervene. The firearms controller, provincial police Insp. Isabelle Boudreault, wrote personally to the young man to advise him that his gun licence was being revoked. The RCMP had just advised the provincial police force of their investigation into the man.

    “According to information provided by police sources, it appears that you share the ideologies of extremist Islamist groups,” wrote Boudreault in a letter obtained by La Presse.

    The next week, a new search warrant was executed at the home of Nefkha Bahri’s parents. His weapons were confiscated.

    “As soon as we are made aware of information that could compromise public security, we intervened to revoke the licence. That’s what happened here,” said Lt. Martine Asselin, a spokesperson for the Quebec provincial police.

    Why did it take two and a half years for the information about Nefkha Bahri to be transmitted to the provincial police when the RCMP said as early as 2012 that it had reason to believe that their subject was linked to terrorism?

    The RCMP refused to provide an answer.

    “The questions touch on investigations that are ongoing, so we cannot provide any information or comment,” said RCMP spokesperson Camille Habel.

    “It’s only when there were the attacks between October 2014 and January 2015 that the RCMP started thinking of taking away my guns. In fact, it didn’t seem to bother the RCMP that I had guns back when they had an (undercover agent) hanging around me and proposing that I go to the firing range with him,” he said.

    “They encouraged me to use them.”

    The issue of information-sharing between police forces in the matter of the fight against terrorism has long been the subject of debate in Canada. Quebec has created a “structure of police management against terrorism” where officials from the RCMP, the Montreal police and the Sûreté du Québec exchange information on the subject. Officers from Montreal and the provincial force are also loaned to the RCMP’s Integrated National Security Enforcement Teams.

    “The exchanges are much more between federal authorities. The firearms controller with the Sûreté du Québec doesn’t have “top secret” clearance to have access to all the information in a terrorism case,” explained Paul Laurier, a former provincial police anti-terrorism investigator who works now as a private security consultant.

    Nefkha Bahri’s lawyer said that his client “like many other Muslims, is horrified and disgusted by the abuses committed by terrorist groups around the world.”

    “Finally, Mr. Nefkha Bahri wishes to add that he loves his country and he believes that one of the most marvelous things that Canada has is the rule of law. It stipulates that an individual’s freedoms can only be limited for reasons that are reasonable and not discriminatory. He believes this is clearly not the case here,” Morasse said.

  26. The FBI’s Defense of How the Clinton Interview Was Conducted Is Full of Holes

    The Bureau was clearly hamstrung by the Obama administration’s goal of avoiding prosecution.

    In a nutshell, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department permitted Hillary Clinton’s aide Cheryl Mills — the subject of a criminal investigation, who had been given immunity from prosecution despite strong evidence that she had lied to investigators — to participate as a lawyer for Clinton, the principal subject of the same criminal investigation. This unheard-of accommodation was made in violation not only of rudimentary investigative protocols and attorney-ethics rules, but also of the federal criminal law.

    Yet, the FBI and the Justice Department, the nation’s chief enforcers of the federal criminal law, tell us they were powerless to object.


    In his testimony this week before the House Judiciary Committee, FBI director James Comey inveighed against critics who have slimed the Bureau as “weasels” over its handling of the Clinton e-mails investigation. I am not one of those people. After a quarter-century in the trenches with the Bureau as a prosecutor, I am one of those hopeless romantics who love the FBI and harbor real affection for the director himself.

    I genuinely hate this case. I don’t mind disagreeing with the Bureau, a not infrequent occurrence in my former career. But I am hardwired to presume the FBI’s integrity. Thus, no matter how much irregularities in the Clinton investigation have rankled me, I’ve chalked them up to the Bureau’s being hamstrung. There was no chance on God’s green earth that President Obama and his Justice Department were ever going to permit an indictment of Hillary Clinton. Jim Comey says he didn’t make his final decision to recommend against prosecution until after Mrs. Clinton was interviewed at the end of the investigation, and that he did not coordinate that decision with his Obama-administration superiors. If he says so, that’s good enough for me. But it doesn’t mean the director made his decision detached from the dismal reality of the situation. And whatever one’s armchair-quarterback view on how he should have handled it, that reality was not of his making.

    But just as Director Comey rightly objects to being regarded as a weasel, I don’t much like being regarded as an idiot . . . which is what I’d have to be to swallow some of this stuff.

    The FBI absolutely has control over who may be present at an interview with a subject of an investigation. There are a variety of reasons for this, but the most basic one is that an interview never has to happen unless the FBI consents to it.

    In his testimony, Comey kept stressing that Mrs. Clinton’s interview was “voluntary” — contending that since she was not required to submit to it, she could impose any conditions on her agreement to do so. That is nonsense. The interview was voluntary on both sides. The FBI is never required to indulge conditions that make a mockery of its serious business.

    In this regard, Comey is like a guy who ties his own hands behind his back and then says he was powerless to defend himself. If Clinton declined to submit to an FBI interview unless Mills (or the similarly situated lawyer Heather Samuelson) was permitted to be present, the investigators could simply have handed her a grand-jury subpoena. They could then have politely directed her to a chamber where she would be compelled to answer questions — under oath and all by her lonesome, without any of her lawyer legion in attendance.

    But, you see, in this investigation — unlike every other major criminal investigation in which the government tries to make the case rather than not make the case — the Justice Department declined to convene a grand jury.

    Regarding this highly irregular dereliction, there appears to have been no FBI pushback. In fact, Director Comey told the committee that it is often easier in a complex case to acquire evidence by striking informal agreements with defense lawyers.

    That is certainly true . . . but there is nothing inconsistent about impaneling a grand jury while concurrently negotiating such deals. Indeed, this is how it is generally done, precisely because it makes defense lawyers a whole lot more agreeable. It is the same principle that applies to U.S. diplomatic negotiations: They go much smoother when the other country grasps that we have the U.S. armed forces in our back pocket. When they know the alternative is a grilling of their client in the grand-jury hot seat, defense lawyers are less apt to insist on outrageous interview conditions, and the government tends not to have to extend inexplicable immunity grants to obtain evidence that is accessible by simply serving a subpoena.

    As I’ve previously explained, the FBI has no authority to convene a grand jury. That is up to the Justice Department. In this case, there was no way the Obama Justice Department was going to indict Mrs. Clinton, so it clearly resisted convening a grand jury. Doing so would have underscored the gravity of offenses that the Justice Department was working energetically, and in conjunction with Team Clinton’s lawyers, to downplay.

    That is how Ms. Mills ended up in the room for Mrs. Clinton’s interview as a lawyer, after having been in the interview room herself as a subject of the same investigation.

    • Another funny thing about that. I mentioned that Clinton had a battalion of lawyers. They included her primary lawyers from Williams & Connolly, among the finest criminal-defense attorneys in the country. Since she had plenty of top-notch representation, she certainly did not need Cheryl Mills as a lawyer. Besides, Ms. Mills does not appear to have been practicing much law at the time. She had not functioned as a lawyer in her years as Clinton’s top staffer at the State Department. It appears that, on leaving State with Clinton, she spent her time, apart from sitting on the board of the Clinton Foundation (the Hillary campaign in waiting), running the BlackIvy Group, a development company that builds business enterprises in Africa.

      I don’t mean to imply that Ms. Mills is anything but an able lawyer. I’m just suggesting that she doesn’t seem to have been someone you’d have called in 2014 if, like Hillary Clinton, you’d gotten jammed up in a criminal investigation. That’s what you call Williams & Connolly for.

      But you might call Cheryl Mills, who was right by your side at the State Department while you were doing those things that got you jammed up, if your goal was to envelop those things in an obstructive fog of purported attorney-client privilege.

      The FBI was not required to treat a conspiracy to obstruct justice as if it were good-faith assistance of counsel. Nevertheless, co-conspirator Mills was laundered into lawyer Mills.

      When Mills lied to agents about not knowing of the Clinton homebrew server while at State — a story that doesn’t pass the laugh test — this false account was shrugged off as one of those innocent, unresolvable failures of recollection.

      The classified information on Mills’s private laptop was excused, according to Comey’s testimony, because it merely duplicated (for purposes of sorting through e-mails) what was on Clinton’s server — a rationalization that, even if true, is not a defense to recklessly storing classified information on a non-secure computer.

      Then, when case agents sensibly wanted to scrutinize the laptop, the Justice Department gave Mills immunity in exchange for this item whose production could have been compelled by a subpoena. On this, Director Comey’s account, again, is puzzling. He rationalizes the immunity grant as an appropriate way to deal with the complications of searching a lawyer’s computer, which is bound to contain privileged communications with many clients. But quite apart from the fact that Mills these days seems to have only a single “client,” the director is mixing apples and oranges. Immunity is conferred to shield a suspect from criminal liability, not to shield a lawyer’s clients from government intrusion into their privileged legal communications. There are other protective procedures for the latter situation.

      Moreover, Comey kept telling lawmakers that Mills had gotten only limited “act of production” immunity. This is simply wrong. As I explained last week, act of production immunity covers only the testimonial aspects of the act of surrendering an object one is being compelled (usually by grand-jury subpoena) to produce. It means the government may not use your production of the object as proof that you (a) possessed something that is potentially incriminating and (b), by handing it over, implicitly admitted it was the object described in the subpoena. Pace Comey, act-of-production immunity does not prevent the government from using the contents of the object against the person who surrenders it. But under the immunity grant to Mills, prosecutors forfeited exactly this right. That is not “limited immunity”; that is the gratuitous enlargement of gratuitously granted immunity.

      The FBI relies on this airbrushing of Mills to suggest that she wasn’t really much of a suspect; therefore, we’re to believe, the fact that she sat in on Clinton’s interview, though perhaps a bit irregular, is no big deal.

      But it is a very big deal for at least three reasons.

      First, Comey says he didn’t decide not to seek an indictment of Clinton until after Clinton’s interview. If that is so, then the FBI had to know that allowing Mills to be present at the interview could have jeopardized any eventual prosecution of Clinton. In such a prosecution, Mills would have been a key witness. But Clinton’s lawyers would have claimed that the FBI let Mills sit in on Clinton’s interview to help Mills get her story straight. They would have accused prosecutors of exploiting Mills, a former member of the Clinton legal team, to pry into Clinton’s privileged strategic communications with her other lawyers.

      Second, though Comey says the FBI is in no position to enforce attorney ethical rules that barred Mills from representing Clinton at the interview, this was not just an FBI interview. According to the director, several Justice Department lawyers also participated. Those lawyers, too, are bound by the ethical rules. They had an obligation to object to this unseemly arrangement and to do what was in their considerable power to prevent it.

      Finally, as Shannen Coffin has pointed out, Mills was not just violating an ethical rule. Her representation of Clinton runs afoul of federal law. Section 207 of the penal code makes it a crime for a former government official to attempt to influence the government on behalf of another person in a matter in which the former official was heavily involved while working for the government. It was against the law for Mills, as an attorney, to attempt to influence the Justice Department’s consideration of the case against Clinton.

      I couldn’t agree more with Director Comey that the FBI is the world’s greatest law-enforcement agency. I just think that when Cheryl Mills tried to walk into Hillary Clinton’s interview, the FBI should have enforced the law.

  27. Meet The Young Virginia Democrat That Registered 19 Dead People To Vote In Virginia
    Tyler Durden’s picture
    by Tyler Durden
    Sep 30, 2016 11:55 PM

    Just yesterday we wrote about an FBI investigation into potential voter fraud in the critical swing state of Virginia after it was revealed that 19 dead people had recently been re-registered to vote (see “FBI Investigating More Dead People Voting In The Key Swing State Of Virginia”). While the Washington Post caught wind of the investigation, it was not known who was behind the operation…until now.

    Meet, Andrew Spieles, a student at James Madison University, and apparently “Lead Organizer” for HarrisonburgVOTES. According to the Daily News-Record, Spieles confessed to re-registering 19 deceased Virginians to vote in the 2016 election cycle.

  28. Islamic Anti-Semitism Continues to Push Jews out of France
    Posted on Friday the 30th of September 2016, by Alice Greene : Staff Writer

    As we wrote in June, Anti-Semitism is growing with surprising alacrity in France – where Jews face vandalism, threats, and terrorist attacks.

    Early last year, a rabbi in Marseilles was attacked and murdered by an ISIS operative.

    France is home to more Jews than anywhere else in Europe – but it’s also home to the most Muslims. The Syrian migrant crisis has boosted France’s Muslim population, which in turn is starting to overpower the Jewish population.

  29. 21 Rapes, Gropes and Affairs: Bubba Clinton’s Sexual Dalliances

    During Monday’s debate, Donald Trump was about to bring up some of former president Bubba Clinton’s sexual history but he restrained himself. But I began to wonder which on of the former president’s sexual dalliances would Mr. Trump talk about. After all there are at least twenty-one that I could find. Some of the women claimed to have been raped, some groped, others were consensual affairs. The vast majority are known by name, but a few wished to remain anonymous. And then there are the ones who are still fearful of the wrath of Hillary Clinton—years later. Ms. Clinton’s wrath isn’t generated by anger over her husband’s dalliances, but because she fears one of these 21 women will ruin her political career.

    Below are the members of Bubba’s 21+ Club.

    Juanita Broaddrick who claims she was raped by Bill Clinton and Hillary tried to silence her. “she says, he got her onto the bed, held her down forcibly and bit her lips. The sexual entry itself was not without some pain, she recalls, because of her stiffness and resistance. When it was over, she says, he looked down at her and said not to worry, he was sterile–he had had mumps when he was a child.”

    Becky Brown was a nanny to Chelsea Clinton and the wife of L.D. Brown, an Arkansas state trooper. She claims he sexually harassed her in the mid-1980s. L.D. Brown made the allegation public in his 1999 book, “Crossfire: Witness in the Clinton Investigation,” writing, “Becky had been baby-sitting Chelsea and had already put her to bed. Bill, after getting a beer, found Becky watching television in the upstairs part of the Mansion. He slouched down next to Becky and offered her a beer. Incredibly, he began his ‘I’m so bad’ routine with Becky! I had seen him use it time and time again to get a woman to comfort him – comforting which he then manipulated into eventual sex. Becky got out of there in a hurry.” (L.D. Brown)

  30. Lawmaker: Clinton Lied to Become Secretary of State

    Last week, the Associated Press revealed Hillary Clinton’s State Department office to be a welcoming home for anyone who donated generously to the Clinton Foundation, and now Senate Republican John Cornyn is accusing the former Secretary of misleading the Senate on her way to a nearly unanimous confirmation vote in 2009.

    At the time, Cornyn expressed grave reservations about a potential conflict of interest. He temporarily blocked her nomination due to those concerns, only giving in after receiving some assurances from Clinton.

    “When I put a hold on Mrs. Clinton’s nomination as secretary of state, she reassured me that they would take appropriate steps,” he said in an interview with The Hill. “As seems to be usual for the Clintons, they crossed the line and all the concerns that she reassured me would not occur did in fact occur.”

    Cornyn said that Clinton turned the nation’s highest diplomatic office into a center for corruption.

    “She was playing both sides,” he said. “As she was performing her job of secretary of State, the Clinton Foundation was shaking down donors who were buying access. It’s absolutely deplorable.”

  31. Europe’s New Media Darlings: Terrorists

    What would have happened if the city council of Jerusalem had conferred the honorary citizenship on Italy’s Mafia leader, Totò Riina, calling him a “political prisoner”? What would have happened if the city council of Tel Aviv had named a street after Giovanni Brusca, the Mafia butcher who kidnapped and tortured the 11-year-old son of another mafioso who had betrayed him, and then dissolved the boy’s body in acid? The Italian government would have vehemently protested. With Palestinian terrorists, however, there is another standard, as if in the eyes of many of Italy’s city councils, terror against Israeli Jews is actually justified.

    In the pro-Palestinian credentials of the mayor of Naples, Luigi de Magistris, the only item missing was giving honorary citizenship to a Palestinian terrorist. Bilal Kayed is anything but a “man of peace.” He is a dangerous Palestinian terrorist who spent 14 years in Israeli prisons for two shooting attacks, and for planning and attempting the (unsuccessful) kidnapping of a soldier. Kayed is now a new honorary citizen of Naples.

    “[It is] a decision that harms the image of Naples”, protested the newly elected president of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities, Noemi Di Segni. Meanwhile, Naples city council has refused to grant honorary citizenship to the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem.

  32. Qatar is losing billions on Deutsche Bank

    Investors are hurting from Deutsche Bank’s share price collapse, none more so than Qatar.

    The wealthy Gulf state bought into the struggling German lender back in 2014, when it injected 1.75 billion euros ($2 billion) in return for about 60 million shares.

    Those shares are now worth just 624 million euros, or about 1.13 billion euros ($1.3 billion) less than Qatar paid.

    The stock has fallen more than 50% in 2016, and 17% this month alone. Fears about the bank’s ability to make money, and whether it can afford a looming U.S. fine for selling toxic mortgages a decade ago, have sent investors running for the exit.

    Not Qatar, however. Former prime minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim Al Thani, who owns the Deutsche Bank (DB) shares via two Caribbean-registered investments firms, increased his stake in 2015, and again a few months back.

    That made him the biggest single shareholder ahead of Blackrock (BLK).

    The bank revealed in July that the Qatari’s firms — Paramount Services Holdings and Supreme Universal Holdings — each owned just under 5%.

    “We are pleased that our Qatari shareholders are banking on the success of Deutsche Bank as shown through their long term holdings,” said Paul Achleitner, Deutsche Bank chairman, in a statement in July.

    In return, Al Thani got to nominate a director to Deutsche’s supervisory board.

    But Qatar’s loyalty is costing it dearly. It’s not clear how much the Qatari royal paid for the additional shares he bought in 2015 and earlier this year, but the stock has been sliding constantly, and accumulated losses on the holding could be closer to $2 billion.

    Oil and gas rich countries in the Middle East have been investing their wealth in global companies and banks as part of a strategy to generate alternative streams of income.

    Qatar came to the rescue of Barclays (BCS) during the global financial crisis, injecting billions of pounds and helping the British bank dodge a government bailout. It’s still the biggest shareholder with about 6%.

    It’s also a top three investor in Credit Suisse (CS).

    All three banks are hacking away at costs and overhauling their businesses. But it may be a very long time before Qatar sees any return on its investment. Barclays stock is down 25% this year, and Credit Suisse has lost 40%.

    The Swiss bank’s CEO Tidjane Thiam was reported to have told a Bloomberg conference earlier this week that European banks are “in a very fragile situation” and “not really investable as a sector.”

    Deutsche executives must be hoping Qatar doesn’t share that view. They may need to ask it again for help.

  33. Yemeni forces destroy Emirati military vessel: al-Masirah

    Yemeni forces have targeted and destroyed an Emirati military vessel in a rocket attack near the Red Sea port city of Mokha, al-Masirah TV said.

    A military source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Ansarullah fighters and allied army forces launched rockets at an HSV-2 Swift hybrid catamaran operated by the Emirati navy off the shores of the Red Sea port city of Mokha early on Saturday, al-Masirah television reported.

    The catamaran was reportedly a high-speed logistical ship capable of locating mines, controlling military operations and transporting troops and equipment. The vessel formerly belonged to the US navy, al-Masirah said.

    Ansarullah fighters working in cooperation with the Yemeni army have so far destroyed several hostile warships and boats.

    On October 10, 2015, Yemeni army forces destroyed a Saudi warship in a missile attack in the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait, which connects the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden. That development came only three days after Yemeni forces managed to destroy another Saudi vessel in the area.

    Saudi-led forces rescue passengers from vessel off Yemen: SPA

    A Saudi-led force in Yemen said it rescued passengers on Saturday from a vessel being used by the United Arab Emirates military that was attacked by Houthi fighters in a strategic Red Sea shipping lane.

    “The coalition rescued civilians from a vessel targeted by Houthi militias … that was transferring medical aid to the city of Aden and evacuating wounded civilians for treatment,” the coalition said in a statement on Saudi state news agency SPA.

    Hundreds of Emirati soldiers in an Arab alliance have been fighting Yemen’s Iran-allied Houthis, who control the capital, and training Yemeni troops in Aden to help rebuild a state loyal to exiled president Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.

    The UAE military said on Saturday one of its vessels had been involved in an “incident” near the Bab al-Mandab strait off Yemen’s southern coast but none of its crew had been hurt.

    The Houthis, however, said on Saturday their forces had destroyed a UAE military vessel that was advancing toward the Red Sea port of Al-Mokha.

    “Armed forces destroyed with a missile a military vessel belonging to the forces of the UAE,” a military official was quoted as saying by the Saba Yemeni news agency, run by the dominant Houthi movement since it seized Sanaa last year.

    In 2013, more than 3.4 million barrels of oil per day passed through the 20 km (12 mile) wide Bab al-Mandab strait, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

    A senior Emirati commander was among dozens killed in a Tochka rocket strike in 2015 on an army camp near Bab al-Mandab, one of the bloodiest setbacks for Gulf forces in months of fighting.

  34. White House wants to add new racial category for Middle Eastern people

    “WASHINGTON — The White House is putting forward a proposal to add a new racial category for people from the Middle East and North Africa under what would be the biggest realignment of federal racial definitions in decades.

    If approved, the new designation could appear on census forms in 2020 and could have far-reaching implications for racial identity, anti-discrimination laws and health research.

    Under the proposal, the new Middle East and North African designation — or MENA, as it’s called by population scholars — is broader in concept than Arab (an ethnicity) or Muslim (a religion). It would include anyone from a region of the world stretching from Morocco to Iran, and including Syrian and Coptic Christians, Israeli Jews and other religious minorities.

    Adding a box on the census form could have implications beyond racial identity. According to the White House notice, the new data could be used for a wide range of political and policy purposes, including:

    • Enforcing the Voting Rights Act and drawing congressional and state legislative district boundaries;

    • Establishing federal affirmative action plans and evaluating claims of employment discrimination in employment in the private sector;

    • Monitoring discrimination in housing, mortgage lending and credit;

    • Enforcing school desegregation policies; and

    • Helping minority-owned small businesses get federal grants and loans.

    Adding the classification also would help the government and independent scholars understand more about trends in health, employment and education.

    Comments on the proposal are due in 30 days, making it possible for the Obama administration to enact the change in the last three months of a presidency that has spent considerable effort to be more inclusive of Arab-Americans and other Middle Easterners.”

  35. RUSSIA – MOSCOW Man with gun & gas canister attempts to break into Moscow synagogue, wounds guard

    At least one person has sustained gunshot wounds after an armed perpetrator tried to break into a synagogue in central Moscow and threatened to set it on fire, local media reported.

    Police confirmed the incident.

    “There was a conflict in one of the religious institutions between the guards and a man, who behaved inadequately,” Interior Ministry spokeswoman Irina Volk said

    “As a result, the person fired several shots at the guards from a non-lethal pistol. After that he was arrested and delivered to a police station,” she added.

    The attacker had a gun and a canister of gasoline with him, saying that he was going to burn the Moscow Choral Synagogue, reported.

    The guard was hospitalized in critical condition after the bullets hit him in the head and chest, Mediazona news outlet reported.

    Police identified the attacker as a 40 year-old-resident of the Moscow region town of Korolev. His motives remain unclear. But according to, the man has a clinical record and may be mentally unstable.

    The incident happened as Saturday prayers concluded at the synagogue, Viktor Rakhmilov, the deputy chairman of Moscow’s Community of Mountain Jews, told

    The perpetrator had been trying to enter the building for several hours prior to the event, saying that he wanted to see the rabbi, according to Rakhmilov.

    After the man shot the security staff member with the traumatic pistol, he reportedly attempted self-immolation, but was taken to the ground by the injured guard.

    The security guard was escorted to surgery, “but I don’t think that his injuries were serious. He got his cheek and tongue punctured,” Rakhmilov said.

    The head of Russia’s Federation of Jewish Communities, Aleksandr Boroda, has called the attack a “disgusting manifestation of xenophobia,” pointing out the fact that it was attempted on Saturday, a sacred day for Jews.

    The Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia has urged Moscow authorities to boost security at synagogues ahead of New Year festivities.

    “Unfortunately, this is not the first attack on the country’s main mosque and probably not the last. You’re all aware of the situation with these kinds of attacks around the world nowadays. You’re probably also aware we have holidays ahead – we are not canceling any of the events. We will increase our security together with the police. We are not afraid of anyone,” Aleksandr Kagno, head of Moscow’s Jewish religious community (MERO), told RT.

    The Moscow Choral Synagogue is the oldest synagogue in Moscow. According to the synagogue’s website, it’s visited by around 500 people on a daily basis.

    Russia: Security guard shot outside Moscow Choral Synagogue

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