Reader’s links, Sept. 17, 2017

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About Eeyore

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

113 Replies to “Reader’s links, Sept. 17, 2017”

  1. France and Germany Demand Border Checks for Years to Fight Terror (breitbart, Sep 17, 2017)

    “Germany and France are demanding the European Union (EU) allows them to reintroduce border controls within the free movement Schengen zone for as long as four years to help them fight terrorism.

    The proposal, which is also backed by Austria, Denmark, and Norway, was leaked to several European media organisations including The Times.

    The European Commission and its president Jean-Claude Juncker are likely to resist the plan, as open borders and the Euro currency are seen as key cornerstones of Juncker’s federalist vision for the bloc.

    The proposal says that in “exceptional circumstances” Schengen members should be able to double the length of time for which they are currently allowed to suspend the zone along their internal borders.

    “There is a need to allow a member state to reintroduce controls at its internal borders for a period exceeding six months,” the paper says.

    “The grounds for such controls for periods exceeding six months would continue to involve the particular seriousness of the threat to internal security and the long-term nature of that threat.”

    The paper envisages that “the total period during which border control is reintroduced shall not exceed two years” but “where there are exceptional circumstances that total period may be extended to a maximum length of a further period of two years”…”

    • This tells us a lot about how desperate the French and German governments are. They are close to panicking, which means they are expecting either the European citizens to rebel or the Islamic Invaders to start military attacks. If either possibility occurs the other will quickly follow. Given the request for border controls they are probably more afraid of the invaders but they may be afraid of the various resistance groups in Europe coordinating their actions to a larger extent then is currently happening.

  2. Italy Allegedly Paying Libyan Warlord, Former People Smuggler to Halt Migrants (breitbart, Sep 17, 2017)

    “Libyan warlord Ahmed Dabaschi is a former people smuggler who now prevents migrants from leaving Libya and some claim the Italian government has paid him to do it.

    Dabaschi, also known as “al Ammu”, or “the uncle”, is one of the most notorious warlords in the Libyan city of Sabratha. Until recently, he was active in smuggling migrants out to sea where they would often be rescued by NGOs patrolling off the coast. The warlord has now turned his attention to preventing such crossings over the last three months, ?Rheinische Post reports.

    Commanding around 500 men in Sabratha, the 35-year-old is rumoured to be one of the main factors for the lack of migrants in the Libyan search and rescue (SAR) zone. According to some reports, Dabaschi and his men have received money from the Libyan authorities to prevent the migrants, while others have accused the Italian government of covertly working with the warlord.

    A security source in Libya spoke to Associated Press late last month saying: “Yesterday’s traffickers are today’s anti-trafficking force.” The source then added: “When the honeymoon is over between them and the Italians, we will be facing a more dangerous situation.”

    Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera claimed that Italy had sent between 10 to 15 million euros to the Libyan government to stop people trafficking. The Italians have also flatly denied working with smugglers or local warlords.

    Not much is known about Dabaschi, and no photographs of him have ever been taken by journalists. What is known is that he commands the “Ammu Brigade”, a militia which previously smuggled oil, drugs, and human beings. More recently, the militia has been employed as security for guarding an oil refinery outside of the city run by Libyan oil and Italian energy company Eni.

    Some worry that if the money runs out that the group could reopen the floodgates and allow migrant boats to set off once again…”

  3. Yet further evidence of possible collusion with North Korea by China or Russia

    A Potent Fuel Flows to North Korea. It May Be Too Late to Halt It.

    When North Korea launched long-range missiles this summer, and again on Friday, demonstrating its ability to strike Guam and perhaps the United States mainland, it powered the weapons with a rare, potent rocket fuel that American intelligence agencies believe initially came from China and Russia.

    The United States government is scrambling to determine whether those two countries are still providing the ingredients for the highly volatile fuel and, if so, whether North Korea’s supply can be interrupted, either through sanctions or sabotage. Among those who study the issue, there is a growing belief that the United States should focus on the fuel, either to halt it, if possible, or to take advantage of its volatile properties to slow the North’s program.

    But it may well be too late. Intelligence officials believe that the North’s program has advanced to the point where it is no longer as reliant on outside suppliers, and that it may itself be making the deadly fuel, known as UDMH. Despite a long record of intelligence warnings that the North was acquiring both forceful missile engines and the fuel to power them, there is no evidence that Washington has ever moved with urgency to cut off Pyongyang’s access to the rare propellant.

    Classified memos from both the George W. Bush and Obama administrations laid out, with what turned out to be prescient clarity, how the North’s pursuit of the highly potent fuel would enable it to develop missiles that could strike almost anywhere in the continental United States.

    In response to inquiries from The New York Times, Timothy Barrett, a spokesman for the director of national intelligence, said that “based on North Korea’s demonstrated science and technological capabilities — coupled with the priority Pyongyang places on missile programs — North Korea probably is capable of producing UDMH domestically.” UDMH is short for unsymmetrical dimethyl hydrazine.

    Some experts are skeptical that the North has succeeded in domestic production, given the great difficulty of making and using the highly poisonous fuel, which in far more technically advanced nations has led to giant explosions of missiles and factories.

    In public, at least, the Trump administration has been far more focused on ordinary fuels — the oil and gas used to heat homes and power vehicles. The United States has pushed to cut off those supplies to the North, but it settled last week for modest cutbacks under a United Nations resolution.

    Nonetheless, on Sunday the president made a case that those sanctions were having an effect. He wrote on Twitter that he had spoken with South Korea’s president, Moon Jae-in, and tossed out a new nickname for the North’s leader, Kim Jong-un.

    “Asked him how Rocket Man is doing,” President Trump wrote. “Long gas lines forming in North Korea. Too bad!”

    But inside the intelligence agencies and among a few on Capitol Hill who have studied the matter, UDMH is a source of fascination and seen as a natural target for the American effort to halt Mr. Kim’s missile program.

    “If North Korea does not have UDMH, it cannot threaten the United States, it’s as simple as that,” said Senator Edward J. Markey, Democrat of Massachusetts, who sits on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. “These are the issues that the U.S. intelligence community has to answer: from which countries they receive the fuel — it’s probably China — and whether North Korea has a stockpile and how big it is.”

    Today, the chemical is made primarily by China, a few European nations and Russia, which calls it the devil’s venom. Russia only recently resumed production of the fuel, after Western supplies were cut off over its annexation of Crimea.

    But the Russians are leery of the propellant: It triggered the worst disaster of the space age, in 1960, when scores of Soviet workers and spectators died during a test firing of one of Moscow’s early intercontinental ballistic missiles.

    The United States no longer produces the fuel — NASA warned of its toxic and explosive dangers as early as 1966, producing a video that opens with a spectacular explosion. Long ago, the American nuclear fleet turned to more stable solid fuels, a move the North Koreans are now trying to replicate. But it may be a decade, experts say, before the North masters that technology to power intercontinental missiles.

    The White House and American intelligence agencies declined to answer questions about what, if anything, they were doing to cut off North Korea’s supplies, citing the highly classified nature of their effort to disrupt the North Korean missile program. Those efforts have included cyberattacks authorized by President Barack Obama in 2014.

    But in interviews with four senior American officials who served as the North advanced its program, none could recall any specific discussion of how to disrupt North Korea’s access to the one fuel that now powers its long-range missiles. All four said that while there were wide-ranging discussions about how to penalize the North, they could not remember any that focused specifically on the propellant.

    Twice — in 2012 and 2014 — the fuel was included in United Nations Security Council lists of prohibited export items. Experts say few paid attention to that fine print.

    “All sorts of things banned for export to North Korea find their way in,” said Vann H. Van Diepen, a former State Department official who was at the center of many American efforts to control the spread of weapons of mass destruction.

    But the public and involuntarily public record of American efforts to track North Korea’s progress shows a growing concern dating back a decade that the North was obtaining Russian-designed engines to power its missiles, and the fuel to pour into them. A memo designated “secret” and signed in October 2008 by Condoleezza Rice, then the secretary of state, warned allies that the North had obtained an engine powered by UDMH that “represents a substantial advance in North Korea’s liquid propellant technology,” adding that it “allows North Korea to build even longer-range missiles.”

    The memo, which was included in documents later released by WikiLeaks, was evidence of early efforts to get countries that had signed the Missile Technology Control Regime to keep such technologies out of the hands of North Korea, Iran and other nations.

    When Hillary Clinton succeeded Ms. Rice in 2009, she issued a similar warning. “North Korea’s next goal may be to develop a mobile ICBM that would be capable of threatening targets around the world,” she wrote to member states in the missile control group.

    The missile launch that took place on Friday, in which the projectile was lofted over northern Japan, was from one of those mobile launchers, fueled by UDMH, spy satellites showed.

    The North’s growing dependency on the fuel was reinforced after a military parade in late 2010, when Pyongyang unveiled an intermediate-range missile known as the Musudan. Most of its flight tests failed, some in enormous fireballs.

    Federal officials, congressional aides and rocket scientists say emerging clues suggest that, over the years, Pyongyang obtained the fuel, its precursors, its secret formula and its manufacturing gear from China, the North’s main trading partner. Beijing still uses UDMH to loft satellites and warheads and has long exported the toxic substance around the globe.

    China has always denied aiding North Korea’s missile program, and the fuel is included on a 15-year-old list of missile-related materials that Beijing has put on an export control list. But a secret report from 2008 that was included in the WikiLeaks disclosures found evidence of an “uneven track record in enforcing its missile-related export controls.”

    One senior administration official acknowledged that, as a matter of politics, winning a specific ban on the fuel should not be difficult. While cutting off access to oil would raise fears of a humanitarian disaster as 25 million North Koreans freeze through the winter, the missile fuel is not a petroleum product, instead being made from a family of chemicals used in high explosives.

    The question now is whether the North Koreans have developed their own capabilities to produce the fuel. Given the country’s determination — and success — in proving it could launch a nuclear attack on the United States, experts believe it is just another hurdle to be surmounted.

    Eckhart W. Schmidt, who has written a two-volume textbook on fuels like UDMH and toured fuel plants around the globe, said his own judgment was that North Korea could learn how to achieve industrial production “if the supply from China or Russia is cut off.”

    Mr. Van Diepen, the former State Department official, said that in the quarter-century that the North Koreans have worked on increasingly sophisticated missiles, they have gone through many stages of foreign assistance in obtaining the fuel, the precursors, the formula and the manufacturing gear. He said the North was likely to have achieved some ability to make the volatile fuel — even if that resulted in occasional tragedies.

    “My guess,” Mr. Van Diepen said, “is that the North Korean tolerance for casualties is probably pretty high.”

    • As long as it isn’t their top Scientists no totalitarian government cares about the deaths that occur in their quest for better weapons and more power.

  4. London chemical incident: Vomiting patients hospitalised as street put on lockdown (express, Sep 17, 2017)

    “VOMITING homeowners were rushed to hospital during a chemical incident in south London.

    Alwold Crescent, in Lee, just off the South Circular road was placed on lockdown after emergency services sped to the residential street amid concerns of a chemical reaction.

    Paramedics rushed several people to hospital after witnesses said a number of locals suffered a bad reaction to an unknown substance on Sunday morning.

    Taxi driver Ian Crouch, 39, told The Sun: “I could see the emergency services outside my house.

    “When I spoke to a policeman he said there were people complaining of irritation, who had been throwing up all morning.

    “They’ve been rushed into hospital.

    “He said they were investigating whether it is terror related, but told us not panic.

    “It sounds like we might get evacuated from our homes.

    “They think it’s coming from the sewage system.”…”

  5. Iraq’s policy is to crush Daesh: Abadi (saudigazette, Sep 17, 2017)

    “The Iraqi government’s policy is to crush the Daesh terrorist organization, said Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi with The Associated Press.

    “This is our priority. Not only in Iraq, in the rest of the world as well. So they can’t commit heinous crimes somewhere else. If they are allowed they can come back to the area. We want to crush them,” he said…”

      • Oh really…

        Obviously, you’ve read all of this entirely wrong, Wrath0fKhan. Please trust me.

        What’s really meant is how they, “want to crush them” against their hot, sweating bodies until all involved are panting with the sort of routinely expected bestial lust that makes even the most deranged, sex-crazed hog-raping Appalachian hillbilly look like a prim Quaker abolitionist.

        Any questions?

  6. Afghanistan considers arming ‘village warriors’ to fight Taliban and IS insurgency (alaraby, Sep 17, 2017)

    “Thousands of Afghan civilians could be given weapons to help combat the rise of the Taliban and Islamic State group, despite fears the move could escalate violence in the war-torn country.

    Afghanistan is mulling over the idea of arming and training 20,000 civilians to defend territories recently won back from insurgents, according to AFP.

    But analysts fear the weapons could end up in the wrong hand and that local forces could become another thuggish militia with tribal leaders ruling over mini fiefdoms…”

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