Reader’s links for Oct. 22, 2017

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

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

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

About Eeyore

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

86 Replies to “Reader’s links for Oct. 22, 2017”

  1. Finland: Antifa and Nordic Resistance Movement face off in Tampere

    Member of the far-right Nordic Resistance Movement (NRM) held a rally in Tampere on Saturday, where they were met with counter protests by antifascist demonstrators.

      • Give it time, more and more people will head toward the Soldiers of Odin.
        Some already silently admire them. Soldiers of Odin are not aggressive individuals and certainly not Nazis.

        • The resistance is growing and growing at a faster rate then most realize, for everyone marching 100 support the effort but aren’t yet ready to come out and say so. This is how so many populists are winning elections.

  2. South Korea’s New ‘Frankenmissile’ Would Take Out North Korea’s Kim Jong Un and His Nuclear Weapons

    … South Korea’s army said it’s looking to build a new monster missile capable of wiping out major North Korean political and military installations in the event of an all-out war between the belligerent neighbors.

    South Korea first announced the idea after President Donald Trump pledged last month to remove restrictions on the U.S. ally’s missile payload, paving the way for bigger and stronger weapons at a time when tensions on the Korean Peninsula have escalated significantly. In a report released Thursday, the South Korean army said the Hyunmoo IV surface-to-surface missile, dubbed “Frankenmissile” by South Korean media, would be used in combination with other surface-to-surface missiles and Hyunmoo-class intermediate-range missiles to inflict an “unbearable cost” to its nuclear-armed northern rival.

    “We would use those three types of missiles as the first salvo of the missile strike and concentrate them during the initial phase of war to destroy North Korea’s long-range artillery units and missiles located in ballistic missile operating area,” the army said in a report to lawmakers, according to The Korea Herald.

    U.S. and South Korean troops utilizing the Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) and South Korea’s Hyunmoo II, fire missiles into the waters of the East Sea, off South Korea, July 5, 2017. South Korea has already developed the Hyunmoo III, but the Hyunmoo IV can only be made possible by President Donald Trump’s pledge to remove restrictions on South Korean ballistic missile payload. 8th United States Army/Handout via Reuters

    The report said the three-tier attack plan would first feature KTSMM-1 “artillery killer” surface-to-surface missiles to “strike the enemy’s tunnels with the 170-mm self-propelled howitzers and 240-mm multiple-rocket launch systems,” as well as KTSMM-2 strikes against North Korea’s SCUD missile facilities and 300-mm rocket launchers, according to South Korea’s official Yonhap News Agency.

    Next, the army would unleash Hyunmoo II ballistic missiles and Hyunmoo III cruise missiles to annihilate North Korea’s nuclear weapons arsenal. In order to realize the third phase of the plan, a Hyunmoo IV attack designed to directly devastate North Korea’s political leadership, the U.S. would have to officially remove the 800-kilometer range and 500-kilogram payload limit on South Korean ballistic missiles as dictated by a 2012 agreement.

    Washington and Seoul have reportedly reached a de facto agreement to double this limit as Trump ups the pressure on his North Korea rival, Kim Jong Un. Kim has defied U.N. sanctions and overseen vast advancements in his country’s military capabilities since taking over in 2011, making the reclusive, militarized state a difficult target for even more advanced forces. Trump has responded expanding the U.S.’s military presence in the Asia-Pacific and conducting military exercises with allies South Korea and Japan.

    NorseRadish: Let’s please examine the dog-whistle code speak contained within this Mongolian clusterfü¢k of heretofore unprecedented diplo-babble.

    Above all, and absolutely foremost, is South Korea’s never-before mentioned posing any sort of First Strike capability against the North’s supposedly insuperable batteries of conventional and chemical or biological artillery. Also, do not neglect to notice the article’s mention of, “political and military installations”. That “political” squib is a distinct (and long overdue) poke in the ribs at Psycho Fat Boy.

    For several YEARS, I have challenged all and sundry Internet experts to provide convincing proof that North Korea has had anything in the slightest way of whatever staggering finances or stupendous materiel support capabilities needed to—continually test fire and bore-sight, not to mention—maintain refreshed (much less regularly rotated) active stocks of conventional artillery shells or insanely short shelf-life ground-based NBC (Nuclear, Biological or Chemical) warheads needed to pose the historical threat that has traditionally left Seoul gasping with kimchi-bated breath.

    This entire truckload caravansary of taurine-fecal-matter has allowed South Korea and its cooperative American Liberal whores (Bush 1.0, Clinton, Bush 2.0 & 0bama) to maintain the pretense that Pyongyang poses an invincible threat. While I am reluctant to credit Trump with every last strategic success, neither am I willing to deny that he has been an admirable prime mover in getting these squeamish, appeasing, weaselly, squishy morons to sh!t or get off of the pot.

    South Korea can vanish in ionized plasma before I will ever tolerate Anchorage, Alaska taking a single Nork ICBM. Insert joke about Eskimos inventing ICBMs >here<.

    • First strike with conventional munitions? I wouldn’t bet on that being very effective. The Hyunmoo missile carries a 500kg warhead; the Tomahawk cruise missile carries a 450kg warhead. Even with cluster munitions, it wouldn’t take too long for Nork to scatter their equipment to make the missile strikes ineffective. We saw Bush’s “Shock and Awe” Tomahawk missile strike on Iraq and how ineffective that was, so SK news reports I say are profoundly over optimistic in terms of weapons capability.

    • Two things to factor into your thinking:

      1) US Air Force strikes on the North Korean weapons areas, from what I an hearing they will be using massive laser controlled bombs. First in the Stealth fighters and bombers, this wave takes out command control as well as anti-air capabilities with a second wave of ordinary fighers and B52s to lay their eggs where they are needed.

      2) Read J.E. Dyer’s article about what is happening in the Middle East. When China decides the time is right Kim will provoke an attack and while we and South Korea (along with fighters from other nations in that region) Iran is going to make a move that will cause us to have to split our forces. Probably an attack on Saudi but it may be an attack on a different ally.

      • “The KN-06 is based on the Chinese HQ-9 system, which itself is based on the Russian S-300 air defense system.

        “The system uses what appears to be an indigenous version of the mobile 5N63 “Flap Lid” phased array radar, and likely has capabilities somewhat akin to later versions of the S-300P SAM system. This earlier version of the S-300 series of air defense systems could track and engage four targets at the same time, while later versions could track 12 and engage six. The range of the system’s missiles is uncertain, but something between 60 and 90 miles is likely.

        The laws of physics are available to everyone; I would expect some, maybe even significant losses on part of attacking US forces. Captured POWs would become part of news cycle with the US news media following the standard American running dog aggressor killing the peaceful Third World socialists.

        “Chinese sources claim that the HQ-9 family of systems employ much newer computing technology than imported Russian S-300PMU/PMU1/PMU2 systems. This suggests a equal or superior computing capability for signal processing, data processing and guidance support.

        “The HQ-9 family of systems should not be underestimated – they will be credible equivalents to the SA-20 family of systems.

  3. Great Tits May Be Evolving…

    Now that I have your attention, (ahem) fellow ornithologists, let’s talk about whether length gives an advantage. Still with me?

    In the U.K., birds with the longer-beak gene variants fledged more chicks, on average, than those with short-beak variants.” Evidently, size matters. Speaking of our feathered friends … as the mallard told his bartender, “Just put it on my bill.” [rimshot]

    Visit the site for amazing footage of a Cardinal feeding an entire school with just a few seeds.


  4. The Happy Thread – Part

    This 7,541-Piece Millennium Falcon Is the Largest, Most Desirable Lego Set Ever Created

    In July of 2007, Lego released the Ultimate Collector’s Millennium Falcon set which, at 5,195 pieces, was the largest set the toymaker had ever released. Ten years later, the Falcon is getting a massive update and facelift, with an additional 2,346 pieces, and an even heftier $800 price tag. And good lord, is it beautiful.

    Available starting on October 1, the new and improved Lego Millennium Falcon includes 10 minifigs, highly-detailed interior sections, and the option to build it to look like the Millennium Falcon from the original Star Wars trilogy (round sensor dish) or like the Falcon as it appeared in The Force Awakens (rectangular sensor dish).

    With seven-and-a-half-thousand parts to contend with, the UCS Millennium Falcon comes in an equally gigantic box that Lego has been teasing on its social media channels for a few weeks now. If you’re thinking of picking one up, you might want to bring a dolly—or a Wookiee—to help you get it home. But don’t expect to just to stroll into a Toys “R” Us and find a mountain of these stacked on a shelf. It’s going to be pretty hard to find this one, at least in our galaxy.

    But wait. There’s more! (Try not to strangle on your barely suppressed laughter)

  5. Pension fraud shock over fears UK shelling out millions in fake benefits to YEMEN (express, Oct 22, 2017)

    “IT IS a country on the verge of collapse, torn apart by war, famine and the world’s worst cholera outbreak.

    So it came as a surprise when the Department for Work and Pensions told an MP that Yemen is today home to 30 British pensioners, all aged over 100, who are living out their golden years while claiming full state pensions.

    When Philip Davies, Tory MP for Shipley, West Yorkshire, delved into the House of Commons library, parliamentary eyebrows were raised even further.

    Not only is the life expectancy in Yemen a youthful 64 but, according to figures provided by the Institute for Public Policy Research, the Arab state hosts 2,667 UK citizens – while the DWP is forking out for 2,870 state pensioners.

    The only explanation, according to Mr Davies, is that the DWP is being subjected to systematic fraud.

    And that fraud, assuming each of the 30 pensioners is claiming a full state pension under old rules, could account for as much as £3million of taxpayers’ money since 2010 alone.

    The revelations emerged after Mr Davies asked how many people over 100 years old receive the state pension in each country outside the UK.

    The answer from Under-Secretary Guy Opperman, Tory MP for Hexham in Northumberland, contained mostly expected answers, including 210 in Australia, 140 in Canada, 70 in Jamaica and 100 in the US.

    But the Yemen figure “stuck out like a sore thumb”…”

  6. Filipino troops battling final 30 IS-linked gunmen in Marawi (abcnews, Oct 22, 2017)

    “Philippine troops on Sunday were battling a final group of about 30 pro-Islamic State group militants who were surrounded in one building with all their hostages gone as a nearly five-month siege neared its end in southern Marawi city, a military official said.

    Army Col. Romeo Brawner said troops were aiming to end the crisis before midnight Sunday. He said the remaining gunmen, who include some Indonesian and Malaysian fighters, have the option of surrendering, or they can either be captured or killed.

    “Our government forces will try to do everything to finish the firefight today,” Brawner said in a news conference in Marawi. He said the battle area centered in a two-story building near Lake Lanao where the firefight continued to rage at noon.

    “It’s either they all get killed, because they’re determined to die inside, or we capture them or they surrender,” he said.

    A gradual withdrawal of military forces was underway with the easing of the fighting, which has left at least 1,131 people dead, including 919 militants and 165 soldiers and policemen. Troops continued to ask the gunmen, who are leaderless and running low on ammunition, to surrender by using loudspeakers, Brawner said…”

  7. Syrian Democratic Forces Recapture Oil Field in Deir ez-Zor Province (sputniknews, Oct 22, 2017)

    “The US-supported alliance of Kurdish and Arab militias continue to advance in Syria after Raqqa’s liberation.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) announced on Sunday that their units restored full control over the Al Omar oil field in the Deir ez-Zor province.

    According to the SDF’s official website, the Syrian government forces are deployed nearly two miles away from the field…”

  8. N. Italy referenda: Richest regions of Veneto & Lombardy go to polls over autonomy (RT, Oct 22, 2017)

    “Veneto and Lombardy, the two wealthiest regions of Italy, are voting today in a bid for greater autonomy from the center. While non-binding, the twin referenda send a strong message to Rome after the landmark independence vote in Catalonia.

    Veneto and Lombardy voters are to decide on Sunday whether to grant regional authorities more control over their taxes, administration, immigration and infrastructure.

    Polling stations are open from 7am to 11am on Sunday, with results expected to be counted late into the night, the local press reports. Over 12 million of citizens will be offered a choice of voting ‘yes’, ‘no’ or ‘blank’ by tapping the screen of a tablet fitted to a polling booth, according to La Repubblica newspaper. Voting from abroad is not allowed…”

  9. UK Government Demands UN Refers to ‘Pregnant People’, Not Women (breitbart, Oct 22, 2017)

    “The British government is pushing the United Nations (UN) to use the politically correct term “pregnant people” instead of “women” so the transgendered do not feel excluded.

    The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which the UK has been signed up to since 1976, currently insists that “sentence of death shall not… be carried out on pregnant women.”

    However, an official submission by the UK on proposed amendments demands that references to “women” are erased and only “people” mentioned.

    According to The Times, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) submission claimed that the term “pregnant woman” could “exclude transgender people who have given birth”.

    Yet, in the UK, there have only ever been two examples of transgendered people who consider themselves to be men giving birth.

    Sarah Ditum, a feminist writer, told the paper: “This isn’t inclusion. This is making women unmentionable.

    “Having a female body and knowing what that means for reproduction doesn’t make you ‘exclusionary’. Forcing us to decorously scrub out any reference to our sex on pain of being called bigots is an insult.”

    The Midwives Alliance of North America, the American College of Nurse-Midwives, and the Canadian Association of Midwives already recognise “transsexual” and “gender variant” mothers, and have removed many references to “women”.

    The British push to assert transgender ideology on the international stage comes just two weeks after the Office for National Statistics revealed the sex question on the national census could be scrubbed out because it allegedly “discriminates” against the transgendered.

    Also last week, Theresa May’s announced the government is to press ahead with a consultation on changes to the Gender Recognition Act, allowing people to “self-certify” their gender.

    Critics have warned biological men will get the legal right to access women’s hospital wards, prisons, lavatories, changing rooms and competitive sports simply by declaring they are female…”

  10. Niger Ambush Came After ‘Massive Intelligence Failure,’ Source Says

    WASHINGTON — A senior congressional aide who has been briefed on the deaths of four U.S. servicemen in Niger says the ambush by militants stemmed in part from a “massive intelligence failure.”

    The Pentagon has said that 40 to 50 militants ambushed a 12-man U.S. force in Niger on Oct. 4, killing four and wounding two. The U.S. patrol was seen as routine and had been carried out nearly 30 times in the six months before the attack, the Pentagon has reported.

    The aide, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak publicly, said the House and Senate armed services committees have questions about the scope of the U.S. mission in Niger, and whether the Pentagon is properly supporting the troops on the ground there.

    • Based on what we know right now there was an intel failure combined with the Berets slipping into a relaxed mode because of no contact on patrols for a while. This lead them to develop a pattern on patrol and the enemy used this to carry carry out the ambush. The lack of US air support is Obama;s fault, he reduced the US military well below the safe minimum and hte current crop of Dem politicians are resisting rebuilding the military into a force that has all of the assets it needs.

  11. China’s rising authoritarianism has a stark human cost

    Li Heping spent his career trying to hold Chinese Communist Party officials accountable for their darkest behavior. He believed in an authority higher than the party — China’s own legal system. And for that, he suffered tremendously.

    Since the late ’90s, Li, a 46-year-old human rights lawyer, had defended China’s most persecuted groups: dissidents, petitioners, victims of land grabs and forced demolitions, church leaders, practitioners of the banned spiritual group Falun Gong. Then came the “709” crackdown — named for July 9, 2015, the night it began — when authorities detained or interrogated more than 300 lawyers and their associates, including Li. They held Li without charge for nearly two years. And this May, they let him go — on the condition he remain silent.

  12. Spain Will Remove Catalonia Leader, Escalating Secession Crisis

    BARCELONA — The escalating confrontation over Catalonia’s independence drive took its most serious turn on Saturday as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy of Spain announced he would remove the leadership of the restive region and initiate a process of direct rule by the central government in Madrid.

    It was the first time that Spain’s government had moved to strip the autonomy of one of its 17 regions, and the first time that a leader had invoked Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution — a broad tool intended to protect the “general interests” of the nation.

    The unexpectedly forceful moves by Mr. Rajoy, made after an emergency cabinet meeting, thrust Spain into uncharted waters. The prime minister is trying to put down one of the gravest constitutional crises his country has faced since embracing democracy after the death of its dictator Gen. Francisco Franco in 1975.

  13. Fears of violence as 450,000 take to the streets of Barcelona joined by independence leader following Spanish government bombshell

    The Spanish Prime Minister today said Catalonia’s regional government

    Nearly half a million people have vented their fury on the streets of Barcelona in a huge protest as the Catalan crisis deepens.

    Activists waved the Catalonian independence flag as tempers boiled over after the Spanish Prime Minister said he wanted to dissolve Catalonia’s government.

      • Plus causing chaos in the EU political class. Remember that all of the independence movements currently causing trouble were started by the KGB to weaken the west.

        • I’ve got skin in the game. Or close enough, it’s optional for me. But young Sephardim in Turkey are taking citizenship because their situation is so precarious with the evil Turk. I’m helping.

          So, warning: Rant ahead.

          • Before there was a USSR, before there was a Marx, Catalunya was fighting Castilla. Something like 7 of them – from ~ from just about 1492 on.

            Different people, different history, different language.

            I don’t want to see Barcelona consumed by anarcho-commies or death-cult devils either.

            That doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate their situation and condemn the old-fashioned FASCIST, Franco-wannabe idiot PM Rajoy. yech poo.

            That doesn’t make those who OPPOSE him socialist freeloaders or blood-sucking communists.

            Elsewhere – not here, of course – I’m reading such rubbish – trivializing genuine issues. Grotesque caricatures, drawn with the superiority of the arrogant ignoramus.

            Belittling people whose suffering AS a people is fresh. Whose language was ILLEGAL until 1975.

            Oh, “The rule of law!”
            – – What law? This isn’t the Magna Carta.

            This “Constitution” was written in 1978. Before that there was a dictatorship. The thing reads like the work of a committee of bureaucrats. Lawyers, not statesmen. It sucks!

            The most hard-working, innovative, business-friendly region has been carrying the rest of the country on its back for GENERATIONS.

            Between a rock and a hard place: Why isn’t anyone trying to talk them off the ledge?
            They’re so mad, they’re likely to throw themselves into the arms of Moloch!

            Shame on – forgive me – the King.
            I’m so disappointed. A nice man. A nice, weak man. He could still roll this back. Maybe he will.

            • No it doesn’t make the protesters communists but they are taking advantage of the legitimate protests to create chaos. As I stated the separatists movements were started by the KDG to weaken the west and the current crop of leftist are using those groups to create more chaos. Yes the way the Catalans have been treated is vile and should be stopped. Just as the way the people in the two Italian provinces who voted for independence have been repeatedly badly.

              As you may remember I have been predicting the breakup of some of the European nations, Italy is one I think is going to break up, Spain wasn’t but I didn’t and to a large extent still don’t know a lot about the internal politics of Spain. France is another nation that stands a good chance of breaking up as is Belgium and possibly Holland. In making the predictions I don’t mean to insult anyone of say that the people breaking away don’t have a legitimate reason for doing so.

            • I don’t know how much power the King has or if there is any good solution to this mess. It looks like all of the probable endings to this mess are bad and that no matter what happens chaos, tyranny and civil war are going to be the results. While I have been predicting civil wars in all of the Western European nations I didn’t think they would start in Spain. I though they would start in France of Germany.

              I will predict that if Catalan breaks away and starts a civil war that the Basques in Spain and France will start another one to create their own nation.

              • He still has enormous moral authority. That means something to Catalans. Unlike Basques with their ETA, they’re not violent people.

                Nor are they socialists. Obviously, since they’re among the most entrepreneurial people in Europe and _the_ hardest working in Spain. They pay for loafers elsewhere.

                As for Reds: Catalunya is not “…yes, but…
                Don’t shovel it into a pile with all the manipulated losers!

                Wars against Castilla have been going on for hundreds of years. At each inflection point, an exploited people has attempted to achieve some measure of self-determination.

                Yes, opportunistic infections often destroy the host. That doesn’t mean we don’t treat the host. Just more carefully. Very carefully.

                Just the opposite here.
                The government in Madrid refers to “laws”. There’s nothing comparable to what we have. Or the UK, for that matter. These are arbitrary extrapolations from the 1978 mess of a Constitution. Fall-back mode is Franco, totalitarian.

                – • Rajoy is his true heir. Enter the goons last seen in the 1970s, not so long ago. Franco brought in Moroccan enforcers. Where’d this lot come from?
                Rajoy’s subsequent reprisal moves have only hardened the opposition.

                – • The King’s statement was the biggest disappointment.
                His father’s conciliatory tone after the death of Franco in 1975 prevented the break-up of the country then. “Just words” – but that’s what did it. It gave people time, it opened a national conversation.

                – • The EU refusal to condemn the savage attack on unarmed people in a peaceful civic demonstration – voting! – was another blow.

                It was a repudiation of its own high-blown bull. “Human rights” blather for every inbred subhuman, kid-gloves for savage blackshirts, and NO ONE speaks up here?

                My doctor friends told me almost 900 people required treatment. Not college kids, middle-aged and older were hurt. Hair pulled in great clumps, elderly women, sickening stampede.

  14. Cashing out: The end of Hong Kong’s historic trading floor

    Hong Kong (AFP) – In its heyday in the 1980s, more than a thousand brokers dressed in signature red blazers made deals on the trading floor of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, in what was a raucous, competitive bear pit.

    But as electronic and internet services burgeoned, brokers drifted away to corporate offices.

    With just a handful of traders remaining, the historic hall will close at the end of the month.

    The cavernous red-carpeted space with its circular rows of cubicles and giant digital screens showing stock movements stands largely empty as its last occupants pack up their belongings.

    “Advances in electronic trading and technology have made our work much more convenient, but now it lacks the communal atmosphere that has given me many memories,” said Christopher Cheung, a lawmaker representing the financial services sector who used to trade on the exchange floor.

  15. Ramping up rhetoric, Turkey’s Erdogan chastises U.S. over democracy

    STANBUL/ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan showed no retreat from a diplomatic row with the United States on Saturday, castigating Washington for what he said an “undemocratic” indictment against his security detail.

    His comments may further dash hopes of a quick resolution to an on-going diplomatic crisis between the NATO allies. Both Ankara and Washington have cut back issuing visas to each other’s citizens as ties have worsened.

    “They say the United States is the cradle of democracy. This can’t be true. This can’t be democracy,” Erdogan said in a speech in Istanbul.

    “If arrest warrants are issued against my bodyguards in absentia … in the United States, where I went upon invitation, excuse me but I will not say this is a civilized country.”

    A U.S. grand jury in August indicted 15 Turkish security officials over a brawl between protesters and Erdogan’s security personnel during the Turkish president’s visit to Washington in May. Erdogan has said the indictment was not binding for Ankara.

    The row deepened after Turkish authorities arrested two U.S. consular staff, both Turkish nationals. In May, a translator at the consulate in the southern province of Adana was arrested and two weeks ago a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) worker was detained in Istanbul.

        • There is a Gatestone Institute article calling for the Assyrian Christians to return to Iraq and create their own nation. If they do they are going to have to join the other indigenous Christians who have any brains and move into the Russian controlled areas. Right now Putin will protect them because he has positioned himself to be the protector of Christianity. Also this would give him a source for a fast reaction force of fairly large seize made up of locals to protect the area he controls. Native troops have always been a mainstay of the colonial powers with the Americas being the exception to that rule.

  16. Italians vote in autonomy referendums in shadow of Catalonia crisis

    MILAN (Reuters) – Two wealthy regions of northern Italy began voting on Sunday in referendums for autonomy, ballots that could fan regional tensions in Europe at a time when neighboring Spain is striving to prevent Catalonia from breaking away.

    Lombardy and Veneto, regions that are both run by the once openly secessionist Lega Nord party, are holding non-binding votes which the party hopes will deliver it a mandate to negotiate better financial deals from Rome.

    Unlike the Spanish region of Catalonia, which held an independence referendum on Oct. 1 despite it being ruled unconstitutional, the Italian referendums are within the law.

    Like Catalonia, Lombardy and Veneto complain they pay far more in taxes than they receive. Lombardy, home to financial hub Milan accounts for about 20 percent of Italy’s economy – the euro zone’s third-largest. Veneto, which includes the tourist magnet Venice, accounts for 10 percent.

    “Lombardy and Veneto have two efficient administrations and public services work well, much better than in other Italian regions … this is why I think it is worth asking for greater autonomy,” said Massimo Piscetta, 49, who voted “Yes” in a small town outside Milan.

  17. Mugabe removed as WHO goodwill envoy after outrage -statement

    GENEVA (Reuters) – Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has been removed as a goodwill ambassador, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Sunday following an outrage among Western donors and rights groups at the appointment.

    WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus named Mugabe to the largely ceremonial post at a high-level WHO meeting on chronic diseases, attended by both men, in Uruguay on Wednesday.

    At the time, Tedros praised Zimbabwe as “a country that places universal health coverage and health promotion at the center of its policies to provide health care to all”.

    But Tedros said in a statement that he had listened to those expressing concerns and heard the “different issues” raised.

    “Over the last few days, I have reflected on my appointment of H.E. President Robert Mugabe as WHO Goodwill Ambassador for NCDs in Africa. As a result I have decided to rescind the appointment,” Tedros said.

  18. As relations thaw, Saudi Arabia and Iraq pledge cooperation against IS

    RIYADH (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia and Iraq convened a new joint body to coordinate their fight against Islamic State and on rebuilding Iraqi territory wrested from the group, the Saudi King Salman and Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said in Riyadh on Sunday.

    The rare senior meeting, signaling a thaw between states that have been at loggerheads for decades, was also attended by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who praised the accord between the two close U.S. allies.

    “The joint coordination council will not only lead to closer cooperation in the fight against Daesh, but will also help support the rehabilitation of facilities and infrastructure in the areas liberated,” Tillerson told reporters.

    “The council will also contribute to reforms that will grow and diversify Iraq’s private sector. Such reforms will encourage the foreign investment that is vital to Iraq’s reconstruction efforts. This will be critical to winning the peace that has been earned through the hard-fought military gains.”

  19. Turning point: Iran’s influence in Iraq tipping to dominance
    By J.E. Dyer October 22, 2017

    The New York Times had a funny headline for a funny article on Wednesday. The humor lies in the fact that a Trump policy, undertaken for multiple reasons – not all of which NYT approves – is producing an outcome NYT favors.

    NYT favors enabling Iran. But Trump doing it poses editorial challenges. So the editors managed to squeeze out a slight jab at Trump, while keeping it muted and recounting events with a carefully straight face. Just another eyebrow-raising development in a time of quizzical grimaces.

    Trump is enabling Iran to take effective ownership of Iraq, by overtly standing aside and letting Iran broker and direct a forced retreat of the Kurds in northern Iraq. It is useless to pretend this isn’t happening, when Qods Force commander Qassem Soleimani was in the Kirkuk region when the “battle” for Kirkuk started on Sunday 15 October, and reportedly brokered a deal with the PUK Kurdish faction to retreat from Kirkuk, while Soleimani’s sidekick combat leaders and Iranian-backed militia units were moving in on Kurdish positions. (See here and here as well.)

  20. Read the entire article

    She makes many important points in the article and I agree with all of them. Allowing Iran to dominate Iraq (re-establish the Persian Empire) is not in our best interests, As far as Israel is concerned I can’t think of many things that are worse for them. Dominance in Iraq, the land bridge almost complete and probable nuclear weapons with missiles that can reach Israel are a nightmare that is not going to go away.

    Russia as the power broker in the Middle East is is another nightmare that as she points out will probably last forever. Obama screwed the west many times and in many things and this is one of the worst messes that he left. We, Europe and Israel are going to have to live with this mess for a long time.

    Turkey is another problem that Obama left and one that we are gong to have to face and resist. Given the current political situation in Turkey I don’t see how we could supply any Kurdish independence force if we decided to support one. We don’t have the military assets, the political unity or a friendly (non Russian or Turkish dominated) nation we could use to build up a supply depot and a training center. This is a major stumbling block and one that there is no way around.

    Turkey moving west: This is a nightmare that is probably going to occur and one we in North America need to be prepared for, once this starts we will discover that the leftist and Islamophile politicians (I know redundant) are going to start screaming that we have to stay out of the fight. Combine this with the left wing militias (antifa, BLM and BAMN) along with the Islamic communities and the Iranian and Sunni terrorists who have infiltrated us will be hitting us hard to prevent any US and Canadian support for the Europeans. Combine all of this with the reports from last week that ISIS is planning chemical and bio war attacks in Europe and probably North America. Then throw in the Russian military training near the border with our Eastern European allies and the Chinese and North Korean provocation and you have a recipe for a major war that will last decades.

    Sorry Yuckie I don’t see any way we can prevent this from happening, I don’t like it but I don’t see any way out of this mess that doesn’t lead to a major war when we have a military that is way under manned and with a massive shortage of equipment thanks to Obama giving our equipment to scrap dealers.

  21. Billionaire Clinton donor backs $10 million campaign to impeach Trump
    By LU Staff October 21, 2017

    A liberal billionaire who bankrolls several Democratic causes spent more than $10 million to kick-start a media campaign calling on Congress to impeach President Donald Trump.

    Environmentalist Tom Steyer is spending the money on a national TV campaign to “demand that elected officials take a stand” on ousting the Republican president. Steyer was one of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s chief financial backer during her presidential campaign.

    “A Republican Congress once impeached a president for far less. And today, people in Congress and his own administration know that this President is a clear and present danger who is mentally unstable and armed with nuclear weapons,” Steyer says in the ad, which runs primarily in New York and California, both of which supported Clinton during last year’s election.

    The ad appears below:

  22. Canada: Anti-Trudeau rally clashes with police and counter protesters in Toronto

    Police arrested four people after a group protesting against Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau clashed heavily with counter pro-immigration protesters in Toronto on Saturday.

    The right-wing group included members of Proud Boys and Sons of Odin, who shouted pro-Trump slogans and anti-immigration slogans at the rally, while Nazi symbols and US President Donald Trump masks were seen on some members. A high police presence remained throughout their protest.

  23. Saudi Arabia: Rex Tillerson meets with Saudi king, Iraqi PM for talks in Riyadh

    US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with King Salman bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia and Prime Minister of Iraq Haider al-Abadi at a meeting in Riyadh on Sunday, where they reportedly discussed the diplomatic dispute with Qatar, and respective positions towards Iran, among other topics.

  24. Iran: Female seminaries protest Trump following Washington’s ‘new strategy’ on Iran

    Scores of students and professors of Tehran’s female seminaries rallied in the Iranian capital, Sunday to denounce US President Donald Trump’s recent stance on Iran.

    Protesters condemned the US approach to Tehran, holding placards reading “Down with the USA” and featuring Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

    Commenting on Trump’s rhetoric towards Iran, manager of a female seminary, Maryam Karimzadeh, said that “with this action today, we wanted to bring together selected seminary students in one place in Tehran and take a stance against the hostile politics of the US government.” She went on to say that “we strongly oppose the US politics and would never accept this view of the US towards Iran.”

  25. Bigger battles are rising from the ashes of the war on ISIS (CNN, Oct 22, 2017)

    “The campaign to eradicate the Islamic State has taken three years and nearly 25,000 coalition airstrikes, in addition to thousands by Russian, Iraqi and Syrian aircraft.

    In the process, dozens of towns and cities in Syria and Iraq have been pulverized, among them Raqqa, Aleppo, Mosul, Fallujah and Ramadi.

    The cost of reconstruction — running into hundreds of billions of dollars — is far beyond the capacity of whoever rules either Syria or Iraq. The cost to humanity is worse still…”

  26. India says Myanmar must take back Rohingya Muslims (abcnews, Oct 22, 2017)

    “India’s foreign minister said Sunday that Myanmar must take back Rohingya Muslims to resolve one of Asia’s largest refugee crises in decades.

    Bangladesh’s government said that Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj conveyed this message during a meeting with Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, who ordered border guards and her administration to accommodate hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims to allow them to cross the border and shelter in makeshift camps in the coastal district of Cox’s Bazar…”

      • Rohingya’s terrorists belong to the “Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army”. [ARSA]. They used to be called, “Harkat ul JIHAD al-Islami-Arakan”, but they changed their name to sound like ’moderate’ jihadis.

        They’re commanded by Ataullah abu Ammar Jununi, a 2nd-generation Rohingya born in Karachi, Pakistan. Other insurgent leaders are based in Saudi Arabia.
        (Our ally, the Saudi sweetie-pie!)

        Maybe some of the generals who ordered our soldiers to train & equip al-Nusra, White Helmets, and the Shitte militia can help these freedom fighters, too. Get John McCain on it, he’s on his way to hell anyway.

        ARSA is an affiliate of Jaish-e-Mohammed [JeM]. Pakistani al-Q, mostly operating in Kashmir.

        In Bangladesh, they’re known as ”Jamaat-ud-Dawah” [JuD].

        Lashkar-e-Taiba [LeT] is Pakistan’s ISI terrorist affiliate.
        (Our ally, Paki BinLaden!)

        LeT did Mumbai, 2008. They’re thoroughly infesting Southeast Asia right now, possibly parts of Africa.

        I suspect 0 had more than passing acquaintance with the “spiritual mentor” of this group. Just prior to running for prez, he practiced his bow-wow in Pakistan.

        • O had his fingers in every dirty plot he could find.

          Some of the deep staters in the military would love to start training radicals in that region, They are currently stymied but for how long we don’t know. Right now we aren’t going to do anything to upset India since we need them to remain active in the Chinese border.

  27. France: 8 charged in probe of alleged far-right terror plot (abcnews, Oct 22, 2017)

    “Eight people suspected of belonging to a French far-right extremist group have been given preliminary terror charges for allegedly plotting attacks against mosques, politicians and migrants.

    A judicial official told The Associated Press the suspects were charged with criminal terrorist association on Saturday night. Three of the eight charged are minors. Seven are in custody.

    The suspects are allegedly linked to the founder of a newly formed ultra-nationalist group, the official said. The founder, identified only as Logan N., was arrested in southern France in June.

    The official says investigators believe the group was planning to extort money from business leaders and use it to buy weapons. Some of its members had trained in shooting and stolen a vehicle for the alleged plot.

    The official requested anonymity to discuss the ongoing case.”

  28. Leftist Students Shut Down College Republicans at University of California

    We talked yesterday about the troubling ideas about free speech circulating among the faculty at the University of Florida, but today we’re headed to the other side of the country for a look at an even more disturbing turn of events. The University of California is quickly gaining a reputation for being Ground Zero for liberal intolerance. Incidents at the Riverside and Berkeley campuses have made national news. Now, however, it is the Santa Cruz campus that’s in the headlines, after a group of liberal protesters invaded and shut down a College Republicans meeting with protests and cries of racism.

    According to Campus Reform, the trouble started when a lone student came into the library to ask what the meeting was all about. The attendees informed the student that it was a gathering of the College Republicans, at which point the student went on their merry way. Some 15 minutes later, the student returned…this time with a group of rabid leftists.

    Behold the Facebook call to action that attracted student activists to the library:

  29. Germany: Protesters rally against AfD in Berlin ahead of party’s entry into Parliament
    Thousands of anti-racism protesters gathered near the Brandenburg Gate, in central Berlin, Sunday, to demonstrate against Alternative for Germany (AfD) ahead of the party’s first day in the German Bundestag.

    The large crowd listened to speeches and later peacefully marched towards the German Parliament bearing signs such as “A cap? Sure! For Nazis!”

    “I think the generation before us was more political than us, and it is about time for our generation to take to the streets,” said Berlin resident Simon. Another local, Marcus, said: “I don’t believe we have 1932 ahead of us. I think that would be a wrong comparison. But I am concerned.”

  30. Czech Donald Trump” Wins Landslide Victory
    “I am ready to fight for our national interests.”

    by Soeren Kern
    October 22, 2017 at 5:00 am

    Populist tycoon Andrej Babis and his Eurosceptic political party have won the Czech Republic’s parliamentary election — by a landslide — making the “politically incorrect” billionaire businessman the main contender to become prime minister after coalition negotiations.

    With all of the votes counted, Babis’s anti-establishment party ANO (which stands for “Action of Dissatisfied Citizens” and is also the Czech word for “yes”) won nearly 30% — almost three times its closest rival — in elections held on October 20. The Eurosceptic Civic Democratic Party (ODS), the anti-establishment Czech Pirates Party and the anti-EU Freedom and Direct Democracy party (SPD) came second, third and fourth, with around 11% each.

    The Communists came in fifth with 7.8%. The Social Democrats, the center-left establishment party that finished first in the previous election, came in sixth with just 7.2%. The Christian Democrats, the center-right establishment party, won 5.8%, just enough to qualify for seats in parliament. In all, nine parties competed in the election.

    The election outcome, the result of popular discontent with established parties, is the latest in a recent wave of successes for European populists, including in Austria and Germany. The populist ascendancy highlights a shifting political landscape in Europe where runaway multiculturalism and political correctness, combined with a massive influx of unassimilable migrants from Africa, Asia and the Middle East, have given rise to a surge in support for anti-establishment protest parties.

  31. The Case for Assyrian Independence
    Oasis of Peace in the Middle East

    by Amir George
    October 22, 2017 at 4:30 am

    Nearly six million Assyrian Christians dot the world.

    In 2003, according to the Iraqi government, there were 2.5 million Assyrian Christians in the country, or 10% of the population. Another approximately 3.5 million are scattered from Australia to Europe to Lebanon, Jordan, the US and more.

    The Assyrian Christians — descendants of the Assyrian Empire and the first nation to accept Christ — are the indigenous people of Iraq.

    In spite of being one of the oldest civilizations, and even today speaking Aramaic, the language Jesus spoke, they are refugees in their own homeland.

    Following the recent move towards independence by the Kurdistan Regional Government, the Assyrian Christian organizations worldwide have organized formally to request, in accordance with Iraq’s constitution, their own area in their homeland in northern Iraq, on the Nineveh Plain.

    In the wake of the “Biden Plan”, put forth by former Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chair, and then Vice President Joe Biden, the Assyrian Christian area is one of the four areas envisioned as the only long-term solution for Iraq.

    • This is an interesting idea, they would ned someone on the ground to protect them, right now that would be Putin. This would give him an indigenous military force to help protect his area of control. And they would be natural allies of the Syrian Christians that he is protecting.

      • Putin doesn’t have troops of his own. He owns tribal leaders, but that’s not reliable enough for real strategy.
        He’s using mercenaries. Sparingly, because he doesn’t have money to throw around. Mostly bombs everything that moves.

  32. The Iran Deal: The Dog’s Dinner Obama Dished Out

    by Amir Taheri
    October 22, 2017 at 4:00 am


    “Trump violates international treaty!” “Trump tears up pact signed by world powers!”

    These were some of the headlines that pretended to report US President Donald Trump’s move on the “Iran nuclear deal” last week. Some in the Western media even claimed that the move would complicate the task of curbing North Korea as Pyongyang might conclude that reaching any deal with the world powers, as Iran did, is useless.

    But what is it exactly that Trump has done?

    Before answering that question let’s deal with another question. Is Obama’s Iran “deal” a treaty?

    The answer is: no.

    It is, as Tehran says, “a roadmap” in which Iran promises to take some steps in exchange for “big powers” reciprocating by taking some steps of their own.

    Even then, the “roadmap” or “wish-list” as former US Secretary of State John Kerry described it, does not have an authoritative text; it comes in five different versions, three in Persian and two in English, with many differences.

    The “wish-list” hasn’t been signed by anyone.

  33. It’s Happening! FBI Informant Called To Testify Against Clinton

    An informant who was previously silenced by the Obama administration has been called to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee about the FBI’s investigating regarding Russian Nuclear officials.

    The investigation is alleged to have connections to Hillary Clinton and former Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

    Victoria Toensing, who represents the informant, has asked the committee chairman, Charles Grassley, to allow the testimony about the information into “Uranium One”.

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