Reader’s Links for June 29, 2018

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About Eeyore

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

121 Replies to “Reader’s Links for June 29, 2018”

    • Las Vegas Shooting. LVMPD release more body cam footage. HALL WAY.

      UPDATE LATEST LVMPD BODY CAM RELEASES Wednesday June 27, 2018.

    • Why is new video from Vegas massacre coming out now?

      If only surströmming or hákarl stank as sweet as this lamewad Lost Wages “investigation”—p’raps then my faith in humanity might be (if not precisely in the odoriferous aspect) less incensed (so to speak) by this sort of needless and recklessly pungent bullsh!t.

    • Thank you, Xanthippa. I’m not a big fan of Spencer for the way he knowingly doxxed Baron Bodissey, over at GoV. All the same, it’s long overdue for these past several decades of American >cough/cough< to answer for the ridiculous absurdities that have been marched past Old Glory under their collective watch.

      0bama is just one of many who have hell to pay for their knowing malfeasance of office.

  1. State Of London 2018: Sadiq Khan’s Speech Disrupted By Tommy Robinson Protesters

    The event was temporarily suspended as the demonstrators were escorted from the indigo O2 in North Greenwich on Thursday night.

    Mr Khan was paying tribute to the recent victims of London’s terror attacks when the hecklers began.

    Other members of the audience shouted “sit down” as the protesters shouted “you should be sacked”.

    They then began chanting the name of former EDL leader Tommy Robinson.

    Another video at link:

    Entire video of fiery debate:

  2. EU Leaders Agree on Joint Asylum Centers, Restriction of Migrants’ Moves in Bloc (sputniknews, Jun 29, 2018)

    “President of the European Council Donald Tusk has confirmed that the leaders of the European Union reached an agreement on migration after nine-hour EU summit talks.

    According to a final statement made after 9 hours of talks, the leaders agreed to enhance screening migrants for asylum eligibility and set up “disembarkation platforms” in North Africa to discourage those fleeing to Europe from boarding smuggling boats.

    The plan also stipulates the establishment of joint processing camps within the bloc and to restrict their movement across member-states.

    The EU leaders said the agreement would boost the bloc’s external borders and enhance the solidarity among member nations to ease the pressure.

    “We have a European solution and a work on cooperation,” said French President Emmanuel Macron, adding that the decision will “better organize” reception of migrants in the EU.

    Italy, who long held up any interim agreements at the summit unless it received concrete commitments the country would receive help in managing the waves of newcomers arriving from across the Mediterranean.

    “Today Italy is no longer alone. We are satisfied,” Conte said.

    Italian Interior Minister and leader of the Lega party Matteo Salvini, who is known for his strong anti-immigrant position, echoed these words, stating that Italy defended its stance at the ongoing summit.

    “I am pleased and proud of the results of our government in Brussels… Finally, Europe was forced to accept the discussion on an Italian proposal… Many of our requests have been accepted, on others, there is still work to do but finally Italy has emerged from isolation,” Salvini said.

    ‘Good Message’

    Pressured at home over migration and facing a possible collapse of the ruling coalition amid the migrant row, Merkel praised the adoption of the joint statement at the summit.

    “After intensive discussion on what is perhaps the most challenging issue for the European Union, it is a good message that we have adopted a joint text.”…”

    • EU leaders compromise to share refugees & establish migrant centers on ‘voluntary’ basis (RT, Jun 29, 2018)

      “Following nearly ten hours of tense deliberation in search of a face-saving compromise, the EU leaders have agreed to allow member states to “voluntarily” obey the most controversial clauses of the migrant agreement.

      Pressed by Italy’s concerns, eventually the 28 leaders agreed to reform the asylum system by consensus and to include a clause on hosting migrants across EU countries on a voluntary basis. Part of the agreement gives Italy and Greece options to set up migrant centers on their soil if they so choose.

      “On EU territory, those who are saved, according to international law, should be taken charge of, on the basis of a shared effort, through the transfer in controlled centres set up in Member States, only on a voluntary basis, where rapid and secure processing would allow, with full EU support, to distinguish between irregular migrants, who will be returned, and those in need of international protection, for whom the principle of solidarity would apply,” the conclusions of the European Council meeting read. “All the measures in the context of these controlled centres, including relocation and resettlement, will be on a voluntary basis, without prejudice to the Dublin reform.”

      The leaders also called for “the need for Member States to ensure the effective control of the EU’s external borders with EU financial and material support,” while underlining the “necessity to significantly step up” the return of migrants.

      French President Emmanuel Macron spent part of Thursday in talks with Italy’s prime minister Giuseppe Conte, trying to find a face-saving compromise for the EU. “It is European cooperation that has won the day,” he said, after tense negotiations. “Europe will have to live with migratory pressures for a long time. We must succeed in standing up to this challenge whilst being true to our values.”

      German Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose ‘Open Door’ refugee policy has arguably contributed to the current migrant influx into Europe, welcomed the outcome of the negotiations, noting, however, that there is a lot more work to be done to overcome EU-wide differences.

      “Overall, after an intensive discussion on the most challenging theme for the European Union, namely migration, it is a good signal that we agreed a common text,” Merkel said. “We still have a lot of work to do to bridge the different views.”

      The talks, which concluded at about 4:30am Friday, also included an agreement to increase border security and speed up the process of handling the petitioner’s right to asylum and of extraditing those who don’t qualify. A key Italian demand, to overhaul the rules for distributing migrants when the port-of-entry country is overwhelmed, was reportedly also agreed on…”

    • EU cuts migration deal after marathon talks, differences remain (reuters, Jun 29, 2018)

      “BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European leaders reached a deal on migration in the early hours of Friday after tortuous talks, but details were vague, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel conceded differences remained on an issue that threatens her political career.

      After nine hours of often stormy talks, EU leaders agreed to share out refugees arriving in the bloc on a voluntary basis and create “controlled centers” inside the European Union to process asylum requests.

      They also agreed to share responsibility for migrants rescued at sea, a key demand of Italy’s new prime minister, Giuseppe Conte.

      “Italy is not alone anymore,” he said.

      Conte, whose government includes the anti-establishment 5-Star movement and far-right League, had earlier refused to endorse a summit text on security and trade until other leaders had pledged to help Italy manage Mediterranean arrivals.

      Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, whose League party campaigned to bar migrants fleeing Africa and expel those already in Italy, said he was “satisfied and proud of our government’s results in Brussels”.

      “Finally Europe has been forced to discuss an Italian proposal… (and) finally Italy is no longer isolated and has returned to being a protagonist,” he said in a statement.

      The summit underscored how Europe’s 2015 spike in immigration continues to haunt the bloc.

      Although the traffic has slowed in recent years, there are still daily stories of disasters as migrants make the perilous crossing from Africa to Europe. The Libyan coastguard said around 100 were thought to have drowned off Tripoli on Friday.

      United Nations aid agencies gave the EU deal a cautious welcome.

      “We will welcome any outcome that leads to a more collaborative and harmonized approach to asylum, also one that has at its core and priority saving lives at sea,” said Charlie Yaxley of the refugee agency UNHCR.

      The EU summit took place in an atmosphere of political crisis, with Merkel under intense pressure at home to take a firmer stance on migration.

      Speaking to reporters at 5 a.m. (0300 GMT), she said it was a good signal that leaders had been able to agree a common text, but acknowledged the bloc still had “a lot of work to do to bridge the different views.”

      French President Emmanuel Macron, who has sharply criticized Italy for refusing to allow a migrant rescue ship into its ports, said European cooperation had “won the day”.

      In a final statement full of convoluted language designed to appease the divergent views, the leaders agreed to restrict migrant moves within the bloc but made clear virtually all of their pledges would be carried out on a “voluntary basis” by member states.

      They also agreed to tighten their external border and increase financing for Turkey, Morocco and other North African states to prevent migration to Europe.

      Merkel’s coalition partner, the Christian Social Union (CSU), which has threatened to shut Bavaria’s border to migrants – something that could trigger the collapse of her three-month-old government as well as the EU’s Schengen free-travel zone – gave the summit deal a cautious welcome.

      CSU lawmaker Hans Michelbach told ARD television areas of the deal would be “difficult to implement” and that Merkel would have to discuss it with CSU leader, Horst Seehofer, in the coming days…”

      • L’accordo Ue sui migranti tra condizionali e illusioni

        Leggendo i 12 punti ci sono solo buone intenzioni. I cambiamenti non sono vincolanti. E Dublino non viene superata

        Il gigante ha partorito un topolino. È questa, per quanto riguarda il tema migranti, la sintesi dell’accordo siglato tra i 28 membri dell’Unione nell’ambito del Consiglio europeo.

        Il presidente del Consiglio Giuseppe Conte esulta: “L’Italia non è più sola, Europa più responsabile e solidale”. Ma cambia davvero qualcosa? Leggendo attentamente i dodici punti sull’accordo quello che emerge a chiare lettere è un elenco di buone intenzioni, condito da tanti condizionali e legittimi auspici. La realizzazione concreta delle misure considerate necessarie, però, sono lasciate alla volontà dei Paesi membri (si usa l’espressione “su base volontaria” per dire che ogni Stato, alla fine, si regolerà come meglio crede).

        La cosa più sorprendente è che dopo 13 ore e mezzo di lavoro, paventate ritorsioni (da Francia e Germania) e minacce di veto (dall’Italia), alla fine si è arrivati a un documento che, nella sostanza, non prevede alcun cambiamento vincolante per nessuno, ma come dicevamo solo su “base volontaria”, e non dice alcunché sulla modifica del Regolamento di Dublino (si limita ad auspicare un consenso per riformarlo sulla base di un equilibrio tra responsabilità e solidarietà). Ricordiamo che l’accordo di Dublino obbliga ogni migrante a chiedere asilo nel primo paese europeo in cui arriva: che vuol dire Italia, Grecia o Spagna.

        In un altro punto il documento va incontro alla richiesta della cancelliera tedesca Angela Merkel. Nel punto 11 si legge che “i movimenti secondari di richiedenti asilo tra Stati membri rischiano di compromettere l’integrità del sistema europeo comune di asilo e l’acquis di Schengen. Gli Stati membri dovrebbero adottare tutte le misure legislative e amministrative interne necessarie per contrastare tali movimenti e cooperare strattamente tra di loro a tale fine”. La Germania viene dunque accontentata, e la Merkel porta a casa un punto a suo favore che potrà sbandierare davanti al ministro dell’Interno Seehofer, che minacciava di far saltare il governo ritirando la Csu dalla coalizione. All”Italia ovviamente avrebbe fatto comodo il contrario, favorendo la “libera circolazione” dei migranti, non vincolati a restare nei paesi di primo accesso.

        Il documento siglato a Bruxelles non prevede quote per i paesi europei che oggi non accolgono alcun richiedente asilo. E per quanto riguarda gli hotspot, le “piattaforme di sbarco regionale” per i nuovi arrivati, si parla genericamente di paesi terzi interessati (quali?). Mentre per quanto riguarda il territorio Ue, si parla di centri sorvegliati istituti negli Stati membri (in tutti?), specificando bene “su base volontaria”, che tradotto dal burocratese vuol dire una cosa semplice: a chi non ci sta non succederà niente. Insomma, di concreto c’è poco o nulla. Tutto viene rimandato, a parte le buone intenzioni. In attesa dei nuovi arrivi che si vorrebbero fermare, ma non si sa ancora bene come.

    • MSF says migration deal will ‘block people’ at Europe’s doorstep (afp, Jun 29, 2018)

      “The Medecins Sans Frontieres charity on Friday denounced a new EU deal on migration, saying it appeared to be aimed at blocking even the most vulnerable people outside of the bloc.

      “The only thing European states appear to have agreed on is to block people at the doorstep of Europe regardless of how vulnerable they are, or what horrors they are escaping,” MSF’s emergencies chief Karline Kleijer said in a statement.

      She also accused the deal of aiming to “demonise non-governmental search and rescue operations.”

      Her comments came after EU leaders sealed a deal following marathon talks overnight in Brussels.

      The 28 leaders agreed to consider setting up “disembarkation platforms” outside the bloc, most likely in North Africa, in a bid to discourage migrants boarding EU-bound smuggler boats.

      No third country has so far offered to host these reception centres, where authorities would distinguish between irregular migrants and asylum seekers admissible into the EU.

      According to the EU deal, member countries could also set up migrant processing centres — but only on a voluntary basis — to determine whether the arrivals returned home as economic migrants or were admitted as refugees in willing states.

      Kleijer was especially critical of the likelihood that migrants would be sent to chaos-wracked Libya.

      “Without batting an eyelid, they have formalised – through financing and training – the use of the Libyan Coast Guard to intercept people and return them to Libya,” she said.

      “European governments do this fully in the knowledge that these people will be sent to arbitrary detention and subject to extreme abuse.”

      Kleijer warned that the EU’s “actions block and obstruct us from doing the work EU governments are failing to do, all the while dehumanising people in need.”

      “Any deaths caused by this are now at their hands,” she said.”

    • French President Refuses to Open Migration Centers in France (sputniknews, Jun 29, 2018)

      “France will not open controlled migration centers, as it is not a country of first entry to the European Union, French President Emmanuel Macron said upon arriving at the second plenary meeting of the European Council.

      “France is not the country of the first entry [to the European Union]. Some tried to push us toward this, but I refuse because we should not review our principles and work methods again and again,” Macron said, asked if any migration centers would be open in France.

      The French president stressed that rescue at sea was the responsibility of the country in the proximity of those in need of aid…”

    • EU migration deal may force NGOs to rethink operations, says charity (theguardian, Jun 29, 2018)

      “The NGO vessels that rescue refugees in the Mediterranean may have to rethink their missions if they are forced by the new European agreement on migration to coordinate all of their operations with the Libyan coastguard, according to Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).

      The warning by the humanitarian group came after the European council sealed an agreement on migration that said Europe would “step up” its support of Libya and called on all vessels in the Mediterranean to “not obstruct” Libyan coastguard operations, despite reports that the Libyan officials are committing grave human rights abuses.

      Even as the council celebrated what some leaders hailed as a breakthrough deal – despite its notable lack of details – there were reports that 100 migrants, including three babies, had died in a shipwreck off the coast of Libya.

      MSF – one of a handful of NGOs that have helped save thousands of stranded migrants at sea – said it was witnessing a worrying shift in the Mediterranean since last week.

      The group and others like it usually take direction from Italy’s maritime authorities when they coordinate rescues in international waters. However, since last week, Italy has shifted those responsibilities to the Libyan coastguard, the group said. The Libyan coastguard has an agreement with Italy, which has helped train the force and has been charged with intercepting migrant vessels and taking migrants back to Libya. Once they arrive, migrants face inhuman conditions, according to media reports and human rights organisations.

      “What is new is the fact that now the Italian and Maltese authorities are washing their hands completely of what is happening at sea,” said Hassiba Hadj-Sahraoui, a humanitarian affairs adviser for Médecins Sans Frontières.

      She said that last weekend, Doctors Without Borders was notified that it was not needed for a rescue involving six or seven dinghies in distress, and that similar notice had been given to another NGO. Once NGOs do rescue migrants, they no longer have real options of where to take them, given Italy’s new closed-port policy.

      “We will try to continue but if continuing means we become agents of implementing their [Libyan] policies and forcing people to go back to Libya, this is not acceptable to us,” said Hadj-Sahraoui.

      Matteo Salvini, the far-right Italian interior minister who has taken a hard line against migrants, on Friday repeated his call that all ports in Italy would be closed to NGO ships. Since he became interior minister, Salvini has blocked a number of NGO ships from landing in Italy and has falsely accused them of being funded by George Soros, a common dog-whistle allegation used by the far-right.

      Hassiba Hadj-Sahraoui, a humanitarian affairs adviser for MSF, said NGOs, which some politicians have accused of being “pull factors” for migrants seeking to make the journey across the Mediterranean, have become scapegoats.

      “It is easy to say we are the problem. They say we need to abide by the law, which is something we have always done,” she said.

      NGOs such as Doctors Without Borders are to meet with authorities, she added.”

    • Italy says it has not committed to take back migrants who moved to Germany (reuters, Jun 29, 2018);

      “Italy’s Prime Minister said a migration deal reached in the early hours of Friday by European Union leaders did not foresee that Italy will take back migrants who moved to Germany, in a remark that may not please Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel.

      “The accord does not foresee that Italy takes migrants from Germany,” Giuseppe Conte told a news conference after a two-day EU summit in Brussels.

      “I did not undersign any specific agreement with Merkel” on taking back migrants, he added.”

    • Libya strongman rejects any foreign military presence to stem migration

      The forces of Libyan strongman Khalifa Haftar on Friday rejected any foreign military presence in the south of the country to stem migration, after EU leaders struck a deal to deter Mediterranean crossings.

      The bloc’s leaders agreed to consider setting up “disembarkation platforms” outside Europe, most likely in North Africa, to discourage migrants from boarding EU-bound boats.

      Smugglers have taken advantage of the turmoil in Libya since the 2011 fall of dictator Moamer Kadhafi to establish the country as a major people-trafficking hub.

      Haftar heads the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA) and supports a parallel government in eastern Libya that challenges the authority of the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) based in the capital Tripoli.

      The LNA said any attempt by “foreign parties to deploy a military presence in some areas of southern Libya on the pretext of stemming illegal migrations” is rejected.

      “The army’s general command warns these foreign parties that any such (military) deployment would be considered a flagrant violation of international law and a heinous aggression against Libyan sovereignty,” a statement said.

      It added that the LNA would take “all the necessary measures to protect Libya and its borders”, without elaborating.

      On Monday, GNA Vice President Ahmed Maiteeq said that the UN-backed government “categorically refuses” the installation of migrant centres in Libya.

      Maiteeq made the remarks during a visit to Tripoli by Italy’s new far-right Interior Minister Matteo Salvini.

      During the visit Salvini had called for processing centres to be set up “south of Libya, on the external border of Libya” as a way to block attempts by migrants to head for Europe and “to help Libya as well”.

      Haftar’s forces control much of eastern Libya and some regions in the country’s largely lawless south.

      The strongman has been accused by his opponents of wanting to establish a new military dictatorship in Libya, which has been wracked by violence since the NATO-backed 2011 uprising.

      Since then rival governments and militias have been competing for authority and oil wealth, and Islamists took advantage of the chaos to gain a foothold in the country.

    • Morocco rejects any EU moves for it to host migrants

      Morocco’s foreign minister on Thursday rejected any moves by the European Union to outsource reception centres for migrants beyond the bloc’s borders to his country

      “Morocco rejects and has always rejected these kinds of methods for managing the issue of migration flows,” Nasser Bourita said in Rabat after meeting his Spanish counterpart Josep Borrell.

      Bourita criticised such measures as “easy solutions” and “counterproductive”.

      Along with Tunisia and Albania, Morocco has been one of the countries mentioned as possible locations to host migrants at reception centres outside Europe, an issue to be discussed at an EU summit in Brussels on Thursday.

      Spain is the third biggest destination for migrants in the European Union after Italy and Greece.

      Migrants are increasingly favouring the so-called western Mediterranean route to reach Europe, which involves making the sea crossing between North Africa and southern mainland Spain.

      While the number of migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean has halved this year compared to 2017, the total reaching Spain has tripled, according to the International Organization for Migration.

      Some 12,155 people have arrived in Spain so far this year, the IOM’s most recent figures show, and a further 292 died in the attempt.

      All in all, close to 1,000 migrants have lost their lives in the Mediterranean this year, they add.

    • Italy will close ports to NGO migrant ships ‘all summer’ despite drownings

      Italy’s hardline interior minister, Matteo Salvini, announced Friday that Italian ports would be closed “all summer” to NGO ships which rescue migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean from Africa to Europe.

      “The NGOs will only see Italy on a postcard,” quipped Salvini, who is also the new deputy prime minister and head of the far-right League party.

      “The ports will be closed all summer,” he said on Italian radio. He added that the ban would concern not only access to ports but also “the furnishing of fuel to the NGOs.”

      “As the Italian military tells me as well as the Libyans, the NGOs help traffickers, consciously or not,” said Salvini. But he stressed that Italy with other states “would continue to save all those who need to be saved.”

      Salvini’s comments come on the day that a European Union summit reached a deal on migration after Italy had threatened to scupper it if its demands for help were not met.

      “Foreign NGOs, with foreign crews, flying a foreign flag and financed by foreign institutions will no longer step foot in Italy,” said Italy’s far-right interior minister in the interview with RAI.

      A populist government was sworn in this year in Italy, largely in reaction to increased migration flows from North, West and the Horn of Africa in the last five years to the Mediterranean country. Curbing migration is one of the key objectives of the Five Star Movement-La Lega populist coalition government.

      “Finally Europe has been forced to accept the argument of Italy’s proposal,” Salvini commented, noting that past Italian governments had been ignored by Brussels. “Our numerous demands have been accepted. Italy is coming out of its isolation and playing a new role.”

      The news comes as 100 people were declared missing by the Libyan coastguard after a boat carrying migrants in the Mediterranean capsized, reports Repubblica. Aid organization Medecins Sans Frontieres accused EU authorities of negligence vis-a-vis human life.

      “EU member states are abdicating their responsibilities to save lives and deliberately condemning vulnerable people to be trapped in Libya, or die at sea,” said Karline Kleijer, MSF head of emergencies, in a statement on June 29th. “They do this fully aware of the extreme violence and abuses that refugees and migrants suffer in Libya.”

      Last week was the deadliest so far this year on the Mediterranean, according to MSF. The organization stated that at least 220 people drowned. “These were avoidable tragedies,” adds the statement.

      Most EU leaders nevertheless hailed the new deal, the details of which remain unclear, as a breakthrough. “We will protect better, cooperate more and we reaffirm our principles,” said French President Macron on Friday morning.

      Face à la crise migratoire : l’Europe à la hauteur de son histoire. #EUCO

      Macron tweeted: “In the face of the migration crisis: Europe lives up to its history.”

      Austria’s populist chancellor, Sebastian Kurz, hailed the agreement. “For the first time we have an accord on refugee centres outside the EU… it’s a big step. If we can only ensure that people do not come to Europe we could end trafficking and massively reduce the number of refugees coming into Europe. What is important is that this is implemented soon,” said Chancellor Kurz, reports AFP.

      The central European Visegrad states of Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic known as the V4 crowed victory. “Quotas were an issue for four years, and now everyone has dropped the topic. It was a big fight, the V4 was united and we achieved our goal. It’s a big success,” Czech PM Andrej Babis said.

      In another development, Germany said Friday it had sealed deals with Greece and Spain to take back migrants registered in those countries, in a step toward defusing a row in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s fragile ruling coalition.

      “Greece and Spain are prepared to accept asylum seekers who are in future identified by German authorities at the German-Austrian border and who have a Eurodac registration in those countries,” the German government said, referring to the EU asylum fingerprint database.

  3. Greece must process asylum claims faster, EU rights commissioner says (reuters, Jun 29, 2018)

    “Greece must process asylum claims faster and move asylum seekers from its islands, where many live in cramped and dangerous conditions, the European Union’s top human rights official said on Friday…”

  4. Daesh Terrorists Holding Hostages in Syria’s Daraa Province – UNHCHR (sputniknews, Jun 29, 2018)

    “UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR) Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said that terrorists from the Daesh terror group established control over the western part of the Syrian province of Daraa and are holding hostages there.

    “To add to the bleak situation facing civilians, there are also reports that ISIL* fighters in control of the Yarmouk Basin area in the western part of Daraa Governorate are not allowing civilians to leave areas under their control,” Al Hussein said, as quoted by the UN Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner…”

  5. UK population hit 66million last year after immigration helped drive a 392,000 rise in numbers – but growth has slowed down since EU referendum (dailymail, Jun 29, 2018)

    “The UK population hit 66million last year after immigration helped drive a 392,000 rise in numbers, according to figures released today.

    But growth has slowed down significantly since the EU referendum – with the 0.6 per cent increase the lowest since 2004.

    The expansion in the 12 months to mid-2017 is roughly equivalent to adding a city the size of Coventry.

    Some 41 per cent of the increase was down to the birth rate exceeding the death rate, the Office for National Statistics said.

    The other 59 per cent was due to net international migration.

    London saw the sharpest slowdown, with the increase slumping from 1.19 per cent in the previous year to 0.63 per cent.

    England as a whole saw numbers go up by 0.64 per cent or 351,400, while the level in Scotland and Wales were much lower at 0.37 per cent and 0.39 per cent respectively…”

  6. Doctors ‘should not have to report’ suspected terrorists   (telegraph, Jun 29, 2018)

    “Doctors should not be obliged to refer concerns about suspected terrorists to Prevent de-radicalisation authorities, their union has ruled.

    The British Medical Association agreed a motion to support any members who refuse to take part in training in the scheme.

    Doctors said the obligations on them were “Orwellian” “Kafka-esque” and “like a scene from Minority Report” – claiming the measures were creating “a climate of fear and mistrust”.

    They said that the obligation to refer suspicions about patients or colleagues to the authorities could undermine trust in medics.

    Dr Jackie Appleby, from Tower Hamlets division, said: “Under the Prevent programme public sector workers – which is all of us – are required by law to register concerns about people they come into contact with who might be developing extremist ideas.

    “The main focus is clearly on Islamic extremism and this builds a a climate of fear and mistrust feeds Islamaphobia and leads to racial profiling.

    “Home office data show that Muslims are 40 times more likely to be referred than someone who is not a Muslim. I understand that people are fearful of terrorism and I absolutely condemn it in all its forms but we have to balance our fear of terrorism against the intrusion into people’s lives of counter-terrorism strategies,” the GP said.

    “Prevent means that Muslims are increasingly afraid to express a political opinion for fear of being reported.”…”

  7. Turkey doesn’t see positive steps with EU while Austria has presidency: minister (reuters, Jun 29, 2018)

    “Turkey does not believe positive steps will be taken with the European Union while Austria holds the presidency of the bloc this year, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Friday, reflecting tensions between Ankara and Vienna.

    Austria will take over the rotating six-month presidency of the EU in July, giving it an important say in setting the agenda at the many meetings between member states. It has said it plans to use its presidency to shift toward preventing further waves of migrant arrivals.

    Relations between Turkey and Austria have been strained in recent months over a host of issues, including Vienna’s stance toward migrants and its opposition to Ankara’s technically ongoing, but effectively all but collapsed, EU membership bid.

    “I don’t think there will be positive steps taken during Austria’s term presidency. We spoke at length with the Austrian foreign minister, but unfortunately, the current chancellor is even more extreme than the far-right party,” Cavusoglu told broadcaster NTV.

    Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz’s conservatives are in a coalition government with the anti-Islam Freedom Party, making Austria the only western European country to have a far-right party in government. Both parties believe the European Union should break off Turkish accession talks…”

  8. Syrian attack uproots 120,000, U.N. warns of catastrophe (reuters, Jun 29, 2018)

    “More than 120,000 civilians have been uprooted by a Syrian government offensive in the southwest, a war monitor said on Friday, and a senior U.N. official warned of catastrophe as they risked being trapped between warring sides…”

  9. Turkey arrests former opposition lawmaker on terrorism charges – court (reuters, Jun 29, 2018);

    “A Turkish court ordered a main opposition party politician jailed pending trial on Friday on charges including aiding a terrorist organisation, a court document showed.

    The move came a few days after Eren Erdem lost his seat in parliament in the June 24 elections.

    Istanbul prosecutors are seeking a jail sentence of up to 22 years for Erdem, from the secularist Republican People’s Party (CHP). He is accused of publishing illegal wiretappings when he was the editor of an opposition newspaper in 2014.

    Erdem had already been barred from leaving Turkey due to the investigation and a hearing was set for September, but prosecutors sought his immediate arrest, saying he was a flight risk, the state-run Anadolu news agency said.

    He is the second CHP politician to be jailed after Enis Berberoglu, who was detained following a government purge in the aftermath of an attempted military coup in July 2016.

    Berberoglu was convicted of espionage after allegedly giving an opposition newspaper a video purporting to show Turkey’s intelligence agency trucking weapons to Syria.

    Erdem is charged with assisting the followers of the U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, who is accused of orchestrating the failed 2016 putsch. Gulen denies any connection with it.

    “The reason for this arrest is to prepare the ground for the lie that the ‘CHP is cooperating with terror’,” another CHP politician, former MP Baris Yarkadas, wrote on Twitter.

    Tensions between the CHP and the government escalated this week after the interior minister said he banned CHP officials from attending soldiers’ funerals in an official capacity, accusing the CHP of supporting Kurdish militants.

    Tayyip Erdogan won a new five-year term as president and his Islamist-rooted AK Party and its nationalist allies secured a parliamentary majority in the elections on Sunday.”

  10. Iraq executes 12 after PM calls for speedy executions (reuters, Jun 29, 2018)

    “Iraq put to death 12 people convicted of terrorism hours after Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi called for speedy executions in response to the kidnapping and killing of eight members of the security forces, the government said on Friday.

    Late on Thursday Abadi had ordered “just retribution” through faster executions of al those on death row for terrorism convictions who had exhausted their appeals.

    “Based on the orders of Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, executions were carried out on Thursday of 12 convicted terrorists who have received final verdicts,” a government spokesman said in a statement.

    Security forces on Wednesday found the bodies of eight men mutilated and rigged with explosives, two days after a deadline set by their Islamic State kidnappers expired.

    The militants had kidnapped members of Iraq’s security forces and showed six of them in a video posted online on Saturday, threatening to kill them within three days if the government did not release female Sunni prisoners.

    An interior ministry spokesman said autopsies showed the men were killed before the deadline expired and that the video was Islamic State propaganda…”

  11. Maxine Waters says she’s faced increased threats, cancels attending 2 events

    (CNN)Rep. Maxine Waters said Thursday she’s seen an increase in threats since she made controversial comments last week encouraging protesters to heckle and harass members of Trump’s Cabinet in public spaces.
    The California Democrat canceled two scheduled appearances in Alabama and Texas this weekend after saying she got threatening messages and “hostile mail” at her office, including “one very serious death threat” on Monday from an individual in Texas.
    “As the President has continued to lie and falsely claim that I encouraged people to assault his supporters, while also offering a veiled threat that I should ‘be careful’, even more individuals are leaving (threatening) messages and sending hostile mail to my office,” she said in a statement.
    “There was one very serious death threat made against me on Monday from an individual in Texas which is why my planned speaking engagements in Texas and Alabama were cancelled (sic) this weekend,” she continued. “This is just one in several very serious threats the United States Capitol Police are investigating in which individuals threatened to shoot, lynch, or cause me serious bodily harm.”

    Reached for comment, a spokeswoman for the US Capitol Police said they do not comment on ongoing investigations.

  12. Mexico’s presidential frontrunner is promising a revolution. Can he deliver?

    After two failed attempts, Andrés Manuel López Obrador is on the verge of becoming Mexico’s next president. According to opinion polls, the 64-year-old leftist has a likely insurmountable lead ahead of Sunday’s election, buoyed by widespread anti-establishment sentiment. Sitting in the United States, there’s a temptation to view the Mexican vote through the prism of President Trump, a deeply unpopular figure south of the border. But the support for López Obrador – or Amlo, as he’s commonly called – is far more about revulsion with the domestic status quo than the current occupant of the White House, no matter what he says about a border wall and who will pay for it.

    The signature theme of López Obrador’s campaign has been a sweeping message of anti-corruption, including promises he himself has made to forgo the perks of office and convert Mexico’s lush presidential palace into a public park. His opponents, meanwhile, have failed to shrug off the stigma of graft and abuse of power surrounding their parties and remain linked to a mess of ongoing scandals, as well as the spiraling violence surrounding the country’s notorious drug cartels. Outgoing President Enrique Peña Nieto and his ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, is a widely discredited, lame-duck politician; his appointed successor, José Antonio Meade, is a distant third in polling.

    “This election really began to cease being political a few months ago and became emotional,” Mexican essayist Emiliano Monge told the New Yorker. “It is more than anything a referendum against corruption, in which, as much by right as by cleverness, Amlo has presented himself as the only alternative. And in reality he is.”

  13. Feds to begin distributing grant money to non-sanctuary cities

    The Justice Department said Wednesday it has begun distributing hundreds of millions of dollars in grant money that had been tied up in a major court battle over sanctuary cities.

    Byrne Justice Assistance Grants are used by localities and police departments across the nation to pay for equipment, training, personnel or other pressing needs.

    The Trump administration last year said it would condition the money on localities’ willingness to cooperate in holding illegal immigrants for pickup by federal deportation officers. Chicago sued, saying the conditions weren’t part of federal law.

    A federal district judge had ruled for Chicago, but issued a nationwide injunction saying the conditions couldn’t be applied to any Byrne grants.

    The Justice Department put nearly $200 million in 2017 money on hold as the case proceeded.

  14. BREAKING: 58 firefighters tackle London tower block blaze – smoke billows over East End (express, Jun 29, 2018)

    “FIREFIGHTERS have rushed to tackle a huge fire that has broken out at a London tower block in Mile End.

    Eight fire engines and around 58 firefighter have responded to the scene in Wellington Way, Mile End in east London.

    The London Fire Brigade (LFB) said half of a flat on the 12th floor of a tower block has been engulfed.

    Just before 1pm LFB on Twitter added: “Firefighters are working hard at the scene of the flat fire in Mile End.”

    Footage from the scene taken by a witness shows thick grey smoke billowing from the side of the tower block.

    Meanwhile pictures shared on social show flames shooting out from the windows of a flat on the 12th floor.

    The latest update from the London Fire Brigade’s Twitter account said the fire is now “under control”.

    More than 90 calls were made to the 999 after the fire broke out in the Mile End flat at 12.30pm…”

  15. Suspect Arrested After Man Knocked Out, Robbed In The Bronx

    NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Police say a suspect has turned himself in for sucker-punching a man in the Bronx and leaving the victim unconscious in the street.

    The entire incident was caught on surveillance video. It happened at the intersection of Aqueduct Avenue and Buchanan Place in University Heights on June 18. The victim was then robbed by another group of people following the attack.

    • Unconscious crime victim robbed

      NEW YORK (FOX5NY) – Police in New York say a man who was knocked unconscious in an attack was then robbed by other people as he laid in the middle of a Bronx intersection.

      It happened about 6:10 a.m. on Monday June 18 at the corner of Aqueduct Avenue and Buchanan Place. Police say the 37-year-old man was walking at the location when he was approached by two unidentified men. One of them then punched the victim in the head, causing him to fall to the ground in the middle of the intersection.

      The thugs then walked away. While the victim remained on the ground, unconscious, other people came up to him and began to go through his pockets, removing his phone and ID.

  16. Pentagon Intelligence Chief: Russia And China Will Have Weapons in Space ‘In the Near Future’

    The Defense Intelligence Agency’s director says the U.S. lead in space is diminishing and tomorrow’s skies will be filled with enemy robot satellites.

    Russia and China are developing new space-based weapons and they’ll be ready “in the near future,” Lt. Gen. Robert Ashley, the head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, said Tuesday at the Defense One Technology Summit in Washington, D.C.

    The countries, which Ashley called “competitors,” are developing “the ability to interdict satellites both from a ground standpoint and from a space standpoint,” he said. “The technology is being developed right now. It is coming in the near future.”

    It was the most overt admission yet from an intelligence leader that Russia and China were rapidly seeking to weaponize space. But a February report from the Office of the Director of Intelligence also hinted at it.

  17. VP Pence Urges Central America to Do More to Combat Flow of Migrants During Tour

    The Trump administration is taking a different approach to stemming the flow of illegal aliens by sending the vice president to Central America.

    Vice President Mike Pence recently sounded off on Central American leadership, while discussing immigration in Guatemala.

    “I am sad to report to the presidents gathered here that the vast majority of those entering our country illegally are from your countries,” he stated. “With great respect, our nation needs your nations to do more.”

    Pence made the comments Thursday in front of the presidents of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.

    Since the beginning of the year, more than 150,000 people have left the trio of nations to illegally enter the United States.

    During his speech, Pence reiterated support for the administration’s ‘zero-tolerance’ policy at the border, calling to mind the dangers of illegal immigration.

    “Among this flood of illegal migrants are human traffickers, and violent gang members, like MS-13, but most are making the journey seeking economic opportunity, driven by the misguided belief that they can ignore the laws of the United States and enter our nation without consequences,” he explained.

    Pence noted that while most claim asylum, very few actually flee legitimate persecution for factors, including race, religion or political dissent.

    To address this issue, Pence asked them to increase their own border security and to discourage the lack of respect for American law.

  18. Turkey Refuses to Meet US Calls to Curb Oil Trade With Iran (sputniknews, Jun 29, 2018)

    “An exchange of jabs between Washington and Iran’s trade partners over the critically soured US-Iran relations seems to show no signs of stopping, with even more participants getting involved. One of the Islamic Republic’s long-standing oil importers has had its say.

    According to Ankara, Turkey does not have to act in compliance with “unilateral” US decisions on Iran, thereby suggesting that the country would not halt trade with its close neighbor and major oil supplier.

    Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu’s statement came on Friday after the White House threatened to slap penalties on Iran’s trade partners if they don’t cut off Iranian oil imports by November 4.

    “The fact that we are allies does not mean that we have to abide by all its decisions or all that it says word by word,” Mevlut Cavusoglu stated, going on to say that the US would be better off consulting with Turkey on regional issues…”

  19. Some 100 Migrants Missing, 3 Babies Dead in Shipwreck Off Libyan Coast – Reports (sputniknews, Jun 29, 2018)

    “Around 100 migrants are feared to have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea after their boat capsized off the Libyan coast, the Repubblica newspaper reported.

    According to the Repubblica newspaper, the incident took place east of the Libyan capital of Tripoli. The Libyan Coast Guard has so far managed to rescue 14 people, but the total number of people on board could have been as high as 120…”

  20. euronews – Antisemitism incidents fuel migrant debate in Germany

    After a spate of antisemitic attacks Germany’s 100,000 strong Jewish community is becoming increasingly anxious about a new wave of hate crime. There are fears that it may be linked to an upsurge in migration from Muslim countries hostile to Israel.

    • euronews -Link between antisemitism and migration unproven, analyst tells Euronews

      Antisemitism researcher Nonna Mayer says while sporadic acts of violence by migrants on Jews grab the headlines, far right extremists are to blame for the vast majority of antisemitic incidents.

  21. Forces Attack African Military Base in Central Mali: Sources

    BAMAKO (REUTERS) – Unidentified attackers raided the headquarters of an African military taskforce in central Mali on Friday, local and U.N. sources said.

    There were no immediate details on the scale or impact of the assault on the base in the town of Sevare used by the G5 Sahel – a mission created last year to root out jihadist violence in West Africa’s semi-arid Sahel region.

    The G5, which is made up of soldiers from Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso, Chad and Mauritania, did not respond to requests for comment.

    Violence by Islamist militants has proliferated in the sparsely-populated Sahel in recent years, with groups linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State using central and northern Mali as a launchpad for attacks across the region.

    Western powers, including France and the United States, have provided significant funding to the G5 in an bid to beat back the jihadists and take the pressure off their thousands of troops deployed to the zone.

    But the force has been slow to get off the ground, hobbled by delays disbursing the money and coordinating among the different countries.

    The United Nations’s own peacekeeping mission in Mali, MINUSMA, declined to comment on the reports of an attack.

  22. When a wife is not a wife? Immigration authorities rule that man’s marriage — his fifth — is a sham

    The case of Gurpreet Kaur offers a window into the delicate legal practice of evaluating not just a marriage, but also love, familiarity, even sexual habits

    Surjeet Singh Nahal, 56, lives in Alberta. He has had five wives, all from India. Immigration authorities know him well.

    The first wife sponsored him into Canada as a permanent resident, and he later became a citizen. The second he sponsored, then promptly divorced after a few months. The third he tried to sponsor, but was refused because it appeared to be a “marriage of convenience,” designed to game the immigration system. The fourth he sponsored, stayed married for several years, then divorced.

    Number five was the really tricky one. Now, after reviewing his convoluted marital history and the various immigration cases it has spawned, the Federal Court of Canada has ruled that his current marriage is also a sham, and so his wife cannot have permanent residency.

    The case offers a window into the delicate legal practice of evaluating not just a marriage, but also love, familiarity, closeness, even sexual habits.

    There is no appeal. As a result, Nahal’s new wife and daughter are likely to make a compassionate humanitarian application to remain in the family home in Edmonton, according to their lawyer Richard Kurland. Otherwise, they will have to leave Canada.

    Gurpreet Kaur, 34, is a citizen of India, who entered Canada as a temporary foreign worker in 2013, on a permit that expired last year. Now she is a homemaker and mother.

    She had known Nahal since 2008, but only met in person in 2012, while he was still married to his fourth wife, court records show. In 2014, when he was separated, they began living together, and they married a month after his divorce was finalized in 2015. A month after that, she applied for permanent residency. In 2016, she gave birth to their daughter.

    Last year, her application was refused, on the grounds that she had failed to establish, on a balance of probabilities, that their marriage is genuine and was not entered into primarily for immigration purposes.

    “There are concerns regarding the sponsor’s immigration history as he has a pattern of sponsoring Indian nationals under the family class category and filing federal court appeals on previous officers’ refusals,” an immigration officer decided.

    The officer also noted Nahal had cheated on his previous wives, and his divorce decisions indicate they were based partly on grounds of adultery, mental cruelty, and financial disputes.

    “The thing is that people change, and young men do wild and crazy things, but over the last almost 20 years, there were just two marriages, one of 12 years and one of 7-8 years. And he only has had one child in his lifetime and that’s the one with this lady (Kaur),” Kurland said. “It’s really different. At first blush, it appears like a serial marriage, and always looking to bring people into Canada. But if you’re married to someone for 12 years, come on…”

    The officer’s decision, which was based on in depth interviews and has now been upheld by the federal court, reveals several grounds for suspicion.

    Nahal did not know when his wife entered Canada, or where in India she was from (although this appears to be a confusion over proper place names). Kaur did not know where in India her husband was from or his shift work schedule in Edmonton. And though both were generally aware of the other’s personal circumstances, there were discrepancies in their accounts of when they met, when they started living together, their most recent vacation, their honeymoon, and their most recent sexual encounter.

    The officer noted that Nahal would try to answer questions for his wife, and thought their body language was not reflective of a genuine marriage.

    In her application for judicial review, Kaur argued the officer was unreasonable and acted in bad faith.

    For example, she claimed the officer said one child is not proof of a real marriage, but two would be. The court found this quote was taken out of context, and was simply the officer’s way of saying that all factors, including children, must be considered in the proper context.

    “The officer was telling me that I was desperate for old man, and having his baby, to qualify for permanent residency,” Kaur said in an affidavit. “She was questioning my dignity and self-respect.”

    In law, an immigration officer can judge the authenticity of a marriage based on such things as the length of the relationship before marriage; compatibility in terms of age, interests and finances; how they communicate; how well they know each other, and previous marriages.

    “I would respectfully add to that list the number of previous spousal sponsorship applications, and when and why those marriages were terminated,” wrote Mr. Justice Richard Bell of the Federal Court of Canada.

  23. MSNBC analyst: It’s time for Dems to ‘play by street rules,’ harass moderate GOP senators
    By Ben Bowles June 29, 2018

    So much for the principle of “When they go low, we go high,” espoused by then-First Lady Michelle Obama to rousing cheers at the 2016 Democratic National Convention. Apparently the Democrats’ real credo is “When they go low, we go high — unless the circumstances necessitate going even lower.”

    That was the prescription offered Tuesday by former Maryland congresswoman and current MSNBC analyst Donna Edwards regarding President Donald Trump’s opportunity to appoint his second Supreme Court justice.

    The question posed to her by host Nicole Wallace began with the bogus premise that the upcoming vacancy on the high court during an election year is parallel to the one that arose in 2016 under Barack Obama. Democrats conveniently avoid noting the differences: The death of Antonin Scalia and subsequent appointment of Merrick Garland occurred in Obama’s final year in office, in addition to which the current year is not a presidential election year.

    Fittingly, Edwards’s answer to what Democrats should do was non-constructive, bordering on

    Richard: I thought the Dems were always playing by street rules, they are upset becasue the Republicans have found someone who can fight the same way they do.

    The Dems are losing and this is pissing them off.


    Democratic National Committee (DNC) chairman Tom Perez introduced former President Barack Obama as America’s “real president” at a DNC fundraiser Thursday night.

    “Let’s give it up for the real president of the United States,” Perez said at Thursday’s fundraiser, Politico reported.

    Obama reportedly then told the crowd of Democratic donors that they are “right to be concerned” about Trump’s presidency.

    Perez’s false descriptor for Obama is just the latest instance of prominent Democrats abandoning political norms in order to undermine President Trump.

    Obama has sharply broken with precedent by repeatedly attacking Trump. When Obama left office, the existing standard was for presidents to refrain from publicly criticizing their successor.

    Obama and his wife have slammed Trump more than a dozen times since leaving the White House.


    Barack Obama attends a DNC fundraiser in Beverly Hills

    Barack Obama attends lavish DNC fundraiser where guests paid $100,000 each to take a picture with the former President

    Former President Barack Obama was in Beverly Hills, California, Thursday for a lavish DNC fundraiser

    Among the arrivals was DNC Chairman Tom Perez, 56, former Governor of California Gray Davis, 75, and DNC official photographer Alex Berliner

    Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti, 47, who is reportedly weighing a presidential run, also attended

    The cheapest tickets for the lavish bash cost $2,700, although that did not include dinner or a photo with Obama

    The most expensive tickets, priced at $100,000, included five seats at a VIP table, a picture with the former President, access to the roundtable discussion and membership of the DNC’s National Finance Committee

    Preparations for the lavish bash began early Thursday morning, with catering vans seen pulling up in an alley immediately behind the palatial 8,800sqft home of prominent DNC donor Allan Mutchnik

    Former President Barack Obama was in Beverly Hills, California, Thursday for a lavish DNC fundraiser at the home of a wealthy donor that included a performance by singer Christina Aguilera.

    But the US’s first African American president, 56, was the real star of the show, with guests shelling out up to $100,000 for the chance to hear him speak and take part in a roundtable discussion.

    Photos obtained by DailyMail show the former President arriving at the fundraiser, which took place amid tight security, with Secret Service officers seen patrolling outside.

    Guests began arriving at 4.30pm – more than two hours before Obama – with a steady stream of luxury cars, including Rolls Royces, stretch limos and a BMW I8 sports car, seen depositing partygoers outside the white-painted mansion where the dinner was being held.

    Among the arrivals was DNC Chairman Tom Perez, 56, former Governor of California Gray Davis, 75, and DNC official photographer Alex Berliner.

    Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti, 47, who is reportedly weighing a presidential run, also attended.

    A volunteer promoting an initiative to hospitalize homeless people who come into contact with cops could be seen outside talking to guests prior to Obama’s arrival.
    Obama’s motorcade, which included three black SUVs, two California Highway patrol cars and six motorcycle outriders, eventually swept in just before 7pm – delivering him to a carport at the side of the home.

    The cheapest tickets for the lavish bash cost $2,700, although that did not include dinner or a photo with Obama.

    The most expensive tickets, priced at $100,000, included five seats at a VIP table, a picture with the former President, access to the roundtable discussion, membership of the DNC’s National Finance Committee and invites to two further ‘marquee events’ in 2018.

    Obama left the event at approximately 8.45pm after spending less than two hours with donors at the gala event.

    On the menu was a salad starter, followed by New York strip steak and roast potatoes, accompanied with braised endives and cauliflower purée.

    Preparations for the lavish bash began early Thursday morning, with catering vans seen pulling up in an alley immediately behind the palatial 8,800sqft home of prominent DNC donor Allan Mutchnik, who hosted the event.

    Mutchnik, 54, is the Chief Administrative Officer of Harbor Freight Tools and previously hosted a fundraiser for former Vice President Joe Biden in January 2017. On that occasion, tickets cost between $250 and $10,000 each.

    Prior to Obama’s arrival, two police K-9 units were seen making a sweep of the area, which is part of Los Angeles’ uber-wealthy Beverly Hills enclave, while a maid was spotted sweeping the driveway.

    Other preparations included a large booze delivery courtesy of West Hollywood family-run liquor merchant John & Pete’s Fine Wine and Spirits.

    The store specializes in deluxe drinks, with prices starting at $15 for the cheapest bottle of wine, up to $299.99 for the most expensive vintages and rarest spirits, such as a bottle of Armand de Brigand ‘Ace of Spades’ Brut Champagne.

    DAILY MAIL – Barack Obama attends lavish DNC fundraiser where guests paid $100,000 each to take a picture with the former President

  25. In testimony before Congress, Rod Rosenstein won’t say if Obama tried to hurt Trump campaign
    By Daily Caller News Foundation June 28, 2018

    Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein would not say whether or not any member of the Obama administration tried to undermine President Donald Trump’s campaign leading up to the 2016 presidential election.

    “What did the DOJ or FBI do in terms of collecting information, spying, or surveillance on the Trump campaign be it via Stefan Halper or anybody else working on behalf of the agencies?” GOP Rep. Ron DeSantis of Florida asked Rosenstein during a House Committee on the Judiciary hearing Thursday.

    “As you know, congressman, I’m not permitted to discuss classified information in an open setting but I can assure you we are working with oversight committees and producing all relevant evidence to allow them to answer those questions,” Rosenstein answered.

    Unsatisfied with Rosenstein’s response, DeSantis pressed him once again. (RELATED: Rosenstein Smirks As Democrats Mocks GOP Impeachment)

    “Let me ask you this, then, did the Obama administration, anybody in the administration direct anybody, Halper or anybody, to make contact with anyone associated with the Trump campaign?” DeSantis asked.

  26. Goodlatte: In closed-door deposition, it was FBI lawyers telling Strzok not to answer questions
    By Daily Caller News Foundation June 29, 2018

    FBI lawyers instructed Peter Strzok during a congressional deposition on Wednesday not to answer “many, many questions” about his involvement in the Hillary Clinton and Russia investigations, said House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte.

    “Unfortunately the FBI counsel in the room has instructed Mr. Strzok not to answer many, many questions, and that’s going to be a serious problem moving forward,” Goodlatte told Fox News’ Martha MacCallum. “So we will be raising questions with the FBI and the Department of Justice about why it is that their counsel is instructing Mr. Strzok not to answer questions.”

    Strzok, the former deputy chief of counterintelligence at the FBI, testified for more than 10 hours about his roles in the Clinton and Trump-Russia investigations. He was also pressed about anti-Trump text messages he exchanged with his mistress, a former FBI lawyer named Lisa Page. (RELATED: Strzok Downplays Anti-Trump Text Messages As ‘Intimate Conversations With Intimate Friends’)

    Strzok, who was accompanied by his personal attorney on Wednesday, was the top investigator on Crossfire Hurricane, the FBI investigation into possible collusion between President Donald Trump’s campaign and the Russian government. He served on the special counsel’s investigation until July 2017, when his text messages were discovered by the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General.

  27. Tweets of the Day bonus selection: Democrats ‘Occupy’ and own themselves
    By J.E. Dyer June 29, 2018

    A fine selection of liberal tweets was memorialized earlier today on the topic of Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement, which LU’s Ben Bowles reported on Wednesday. Liberals are having a tough time with Kennedy’s decision, and they’re expressing their feelings vociferously.

    But another tweet begs to be highlighted before the week draws to a close. In a week that has seen big, rift-opening developments — the Kennedy retirement, the Democratic upset in New York by Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — Senator Sanders has now clarified that “in many ways,” the Democrats “did win the [2016] election.”

  28. jihad watch – UK Lord asks if mosques will be monitored for “hate speech,” is threatened with “hate speech” prosecution for asking

    transcript Anti-terrorism: Hate Speech

    Lord Pearson speaks on Islamophobia, Counter-Extremism

  29. DEATH WATCH?! All Eyes Turn to Health of Justice Ginsburg

    (Lionel Parrott, Liberty Headlines) Liberals are nervously watching the health of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, fearing that President Trump could get the opportunity to appoint yet another Supreme Court justice.

    Ginsburg’s survival has assumed even greater importance following Wednesday’s announcement that Justice Anthony Kennedy, the key “swing vote” on the Court, is retiring.

    The article “Is Ruth Bader Ginsburg Next to Retire or Die? Trump is Betting On It” appeared on liberal web site, offering inside information from anonymous sources saying that Trump has predicted that he will get to appoint a total of four justices by the end of his first term.

    Trump appointed Neil Gorsuch to the Court last year, and is expected to name his replacement for Anthony Kennedy this summer.

    When asked what would lead to the next vacancy on the Court, Trump was said to have made a nod to the 85-year-old Ginsburg’s health.

    “What does she weigh? 60 pounds?” the president allegedly said.

  30. Comedy Central Writer Wishes Anthony Kennedy Was Shot

    Peter Hasson on June 27, 2018

    A writer for Comedy Central said he wished Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy was dead after Kennedy announced his intention to retire, giving President Donald Trump another court pick.

    “I wish this Kennedy had been shot instead of the other ones,” Curtis Cooke wrote on Twitter Wednesday in response to news of Kennedy’s retirement.

    The “other ones” is an apparent reference to the assassinations of former President John F. Kennedy and former Sen. Robert F. Kennedy.

    I wish this Kennedy had been shot instead of the other ones.” Screenshot/Twitter

    Cooke is a writer on Comedy Central’s “The Jim Jefferies Show.”

    Cook’s death-wish for Kennedy comes amid an increasingly volatile political environment, in which White House staffers and allies of Trump are subjected to potential harassment everywhere they go and even at home.

    The U.S. Secret Service is assigning a detail to guard press secretary Sarah Sanders in response to concerns about her safety.

    It’s been a little over a year since a left-wing Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders supporter attempted a mass assassination of Republican congressmen.

    Follow Hasson on Twitter @PeterJHasson

  31. Corporate America Ramps Up Financial Gun Control

    Some of America’s most powerful corporations are stepping up measures to restrict the firearms industry and undermine the Second Amendment. (Breitbart)

    NBC Los Angeles reports that companies like Stripe and Inuit are refusing to process payments from gun makers, while Bank of America refuses “financing to companies that make AR-style guns.”

    Bank of America is doing this even though AR-style rifles are both legal and commonly owned.

    Honor Defense, a Gainesville, Georgia, handgun manufacturer is having trouble finding a credit card processor that will take its business, even though Honor is not making ARs. They make a single-stack 9mm for concealed carry but find themselves ostracized simply because their product is a firearm.

    Yet another aspect of corporate America’s financial gun control is seen in attempts to prohibit companies associated with the gun industry from selling certain products. On March 23, 2018, Breitbart News reported Citibank’s new regulations barring gun store customers from selling “high-capacity” magazines and requiring those same stores to refuse long gun sales to 18-20-year-old Americans, even though it is legal to sell guns to 18-20-year-olds.

    Wealthy investment groups, such as the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility – with $634 billion in assets – have called on their members to sever ties with the NRA as well.

  32. No fences, No walls, no borders

    29 June to 1 July 2018, Quebec/US border

    Solidarity Across Borders is organizing a Refugees Welcome Border Caravan which will travel along the Quebec-US border.

    This festive, colourful, family-friendly caravan will stop at many small towns along the border to bring a message of solidarity with people crossing the border from the US and to oppose racist calls to close Quebec’s borders. Because many people who have recently crossed will see their refugee claims refused, the aim is also to help build broad public support for an end to deportations and for mass regularization (status for all!).

    In the context of calls by PQ members to erect a fence to keep people out, providing yet more room for the explicit racism of anti-immigrant extreme right groups like Storm Alliance, and the revelation that Trudeau’s government has been seeking assistance from Trump to prevent migrants from fleeing to Canada, the caravan will assert a vision of society based on solidarity and mutual aid against exclusion and exploitation.

    Get involved:
    * If you live in the border region and want to help host the caravan, get in touch as soon as possible.
    * If you live in Montreal and want to get involved in organizing, help out with tasks, contribute skills, get in touch at any time: the sooner, the better!
    * If you want to come, fill in this form:

    Open the Borders statement:


  33. Post-Election Turkey: The Birth of an Islamist-Nationalist Alliance

    BESA Center Perspectives Paper No. 878, June 29, 2018

    EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Four decades after they emerged as marginal parties in the 1970s, Turkey’s militant Islamists and ultranationalists won a combined 53.6% of the national vote and 57% of parliamentary seats. President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an has said in the past that he would make foreign policy “in line with what my nation demands,” highlighting the Islamist sensitivities of his voter base. He will now add nationalist sensitivities to that foreign policy calculus. This will likely mean confrontations with nations both inside and outside Turkey’s region.

    Turkey’s presidential and parliamentary elections on June 24 sent messages on many wavelengths. The voters asserted the unchallenged popularity of Recep Tayyip Erdo?an, who is the longest-serving Turkish leader since Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey. They welcomed an infant center-right party, IYI (“good” in Turkish); recognized the country’s Kurds as a legitimate political force; and gave a cautious nod to an emerging social democrat politician, Muharrem Ince, Erdo?an’s closest presidential rival.

    More strategically, Election 2018 marked the official birth of an Islamist-nationalist alliance that will recalibrate Turkey’s foreign policy calculus in line with the strong wave of religious/nativist nationalism that brought this alliance to power.

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