Reader’s Links, Aug. 31, 2018

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About Eeyore

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

163 Replies to “Reader’s Links, Aug. 31, 2018”

  1. GAZA – Aug 31 2018 – allahu ackbar

    Palestinians resume Great March of Return protests near Gaza border, at least 120 injured

    • reuters – U.S. halts funding to U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees

      WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Friday cut funding to a U.N. agency that supports Palestinian refugees, saying its business model and fiscal practices were an “irredeemably flawed operation.”

      “The administration has carefully reviewed the issue and determined that the United States will not make additional contributions to UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency),” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.

      She said the agency’s “endlessly and exponentially expanding community of entitled beneficiaries is simply unsustainable and has been in crisis mode for many years.”

      UNRWA says it provides services to about 5 million Palestinian refugees. Most are descendants from individuals who fled Palestine in the 1948 war that led to the creation of the state of Israel.


      reuters : Germany to boost funds for Palestinians after U.S. cut

      BERLIN (Reuters) – The German government has pledged to significantly increase its funding for the U.N. agency that supports Palestinian refugees after the United States cut its aid.

      German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said the funding crisis for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNWRA) was fueling uncertainty.

      “The loss of this organisation could unleash an uncontrollable chain reaction,” he said.

      Germany had already provided 81 million euros ($94 million) in aid for UNWRA this year, he said, and was preparing to increase its contribution. He gave no figure.

      “We are currently preparing to provide an additional amount of significant funds,” Maas said in a letter to European Union foreign ministers that was seen by Reuters.

      Maas said it was clear that the added German funds would not cover a $217 million deficit left by the U.S. withdrawal, and urged the European Union and other states to work towards “a sustainable finance basis for the organisation”.

      It is part of a broader push by Maas to take a more assertive stance in disagreements with the United States on a range of issues including trade, military spending and climate change.

      Jordan said on Thursday it would lead a campaign to raise funds to help the U.N. agency survive, including an appeal to the Arab League.

      UNRWA has faced a cash crisis since the United States, long its biggest donor, earlier this year slashed funding, saying the agency needed to make unspecified reforms and calling on the Palestinians to renew peace talks with Israel.

      The agency was founded in 1949 after the first Arab-Israeli war, in the wake of the exodus of around 700,000 refugees who fled or were driven out of Israel on its founding as a state.

      UNRWA now looks after more than 5 million people in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

  2. California wants to require every corporation to have a woman on its board of directors
    By Joe Newby August 31, 2018

    The California State Legislature is giving “The Onion” a run for its money. The only difference is that the ridiculous headlines coming out of the Golden State are not intended as satire. When the state announces, as it did on Tuesday, that it was doing away with bail for nonviolent offenders — which presumably includes car thieves, burglars, and drug dealers — it isn’t joking.

    Neither was it joking on Wednesday when it passed a bill that, according to CNN Money, “would require publicly-traded companies headquartered in California to place at least one woman on their board by the end of next year — or face a penalty.”

    Lest you think the article is biased, the author, Julia Carpenter, does give a single sentence to opposing viewpoints — that, for example, pressure to satisfy this quota would lead to unqualified board members and would potentially discriminate against male candidates. But she promptly shoots down this argument, noting that “when quotas are not set, however, companies fail to diversify their ranks enough.” Besides, the U.S. is behind the curve of European countries like Norway, which require a percentage of board members to be female (in Norway’s case s much as 40%!).

  3. University of Illinois to Honor Obama with ‘Ethics in Government’ Award

    The University of Illinois system — which has endured more than a decade of corruption scandals — announced Thursday that it will present former President Barack Obama with an “ethics in government” award at a Sep. 7 ceremony.

    The university did not explain what Obama had done to earn the award — nor did it explain how Obama qualified after the IRS scandal, the Benghazi cover-up, or his own “boneheaded” deals with corrupt Chicago figures, among other ethical problems.

    The university stated in a press release:

    • BI dismisses the claim that China hacked Hillary Clinton’s email server

      Judicial Watch Director of Investigations Chris Farrell on how the FBI dismissed the claim that China hacked former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s email server.

  4. FBI arrests five New Mexico compound suspects days after multiple charges were dropped

    The FBI announced Friday that it had arrested all five New Mexico compound suspects, days after multiple charges were dropped. The suspects were now being charged with violating federal firearms and conspiracy laws.

    The announcement comes after local prosecutors dropped charges in the death of a 3-year-old boy at the compound site. Taos County District Attorney Donald Gallegos said Friday his office would now seek grand jury indictments involving the death. Gallegos said seeking indictments would allow more time to gather evidence.

    […]The FBI said they arrested all five suspects without incident on Friday afternoon in Taos.

    All five defendants are scheduled to appear in federal court in Albuquerque on Sept. 4.

  5. Thousands of Pakistanis in ME jails, Senate told (dawn, Aug 31, 2018)

    “ISLAMABAD: The ministry of foreign affairs informed the Senate on Thursday that thousands of Pakistanis were languishing in jails in the Middle East.

    Minister for Foreign Affairs Shah Mahmood Hussain Qureshi said in reply to a question from Senator Mohsin Aziz that around 594 Pakistanis were still in Indian jails. However, India freed some 420 Pakistani prisoners over the past five years and Pakistan released around 1,997 Indian prisoners during the same period. Moreover, 471 Indians were still interned in Pakistani prisons, he added.

    The minister in reply to a query from Senator Bahramand Khan Tangi said that approximately 6,450 Pakistanis were jailed during 2017-18 in Gulf countries.

    Roughly, 2,970 Pakistanis were locked up in jails of Saudi Arabia, while those in the United Arab Emirates comes to about 2,600, Mr Qureshi said further explaining that 657 were in jails of Oman, 128 in Bahrain, 54 in Qatar, 38 in Kuwait and three in Yemen.

    However, teams from the missions in those countries often visited their detained countrymen to provide assistance and maintain regular contact with their families, foreign minister stated, adding that missions also kept regular contacts with respective jail authorities regarding health, food requirements and legal assistance to prisoners.

    To another question of the Senator, Shah Mehmood Qureshi replied that were no networks forcing Pakistani labour to beg in Saudi Arabia.

    However, it was observed that Pakistanis were involved in begging in Jeddah, Riyadh, Makkah and Madina, especially in the months of Ramazan and Eidul Azha. They reportedly hover in the vicinity of Masjid-al-Haram and Masjid-e-Nabwi when locals graciously give away alms. Nonetheless, Saudi authorities generally fail in catching them. Nationals of other countries were also involved in begging and it can’t be tagged to Pakistanis only, Mr Qureshi stated.

    To yet question, Mr Qureshi said that those Pakistanis employed in Gulf countries on proper working visas don’t face work permit problems, but those who overstayed or indulged in illegal activities do encounter troubles particularly, those overstaying on Haj and Umra visas.”

  6. Credit rating agencies are fraudsters, Turkish President Erdo?an says (hurriyetdailynews, Aug 31, 2018)

    “Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an has called international credit rating agencies “fraudsters,” while promising his supporters “this too shall pass,” referring to the ongoing market volatility.

    “They say that credit rating agencies say this or that… Leave those fraudsters. They say a lot of things about us,” Erdo?an said, addressing locals in the western province of Bal?kesir on Aug. 31. “These firms are those that increased ratings of bankrupting states four notches at once. They are such a [crime] syndicate.”

    His comments came after ratings agency Fitch, which downgraded 24 Turkish banks last month, said on Aug. 30 the 25 percent fall in the Turkish Lira since then had heightened risks and could lead to further rating cuts.

    Earlier on Aug. 31, the Turkish president addressed newly graduated military cadets in Bal?kesir, where he said: “Turkey will cope with this attack. For those who ask about foreign exchange rates, our answer is: This too shall pass.”

    Hours before Erdo?an, Treasury and Finance Minister Berat Albayrak said rating agencies have been putting in intense efforts to create a pessimistic view of Turkey’s banks.

    Fitch’s warning came two days after Moody’s downgraded its ratings on 20 Turkish financial institutions, citing the increased risk of a deterioration in funding. The operating environment is now worse than previously expected, it said.”

  7. Dozens dead after days of clashes near Libyan capital (france24, Aug 31, 2018)

    “Violent clashes resumed late Thursday afternoon between rival militias south of the Libyan capital, just hours after a truce was announced to end fighting that has killed almost 30 people since Monday.

    The fighting broke out on Monday in suburbs south of Tripoli and continued into Wednesday evening after a truce collapsed, despite an appeal by the United Nations for calm.

    The clashes had paused on Thursday after a ceasefire agreement announced by officials from western areas, but by late afternoon the hostilities had resumed.

    Residents in the Khellat al-Ferjan area reported the use of heavy weapons and rifle fire.

    Two teenagers were killed when a rocket hit a house in the Sebia district, according to a local official and AFP journalists on the scene.

    The health ministry had earlier said at least 27 people were killed and 91 were wounded in this week’s fighting, most of them civilians…”

  8. Bruce Ohr shared Russia dossier with Mueller deputy Andrew Weissmann, sources say

    Fox News anchor Gregg Jarrett on how DOJ official Bruce Ohr according to sources, said that he contacted his former colleague Andrew Weissmann, who is now a top Robert Mueller deputy, about the Russia dossier in 2016.

  9. FBI Arrests 5 Suspects from Radical New Mexico Compound (sputniknews, Sep 1, 2018)

    “The Federal Bureau of Investigations announced on Friday that they arrested all five members of a “extremist Muslim” group on firearms and conspiracy charges.

    Three of the people involved were allowed to walk free from jail on Wednesday after a legal technicality forced the judge to let them go, while the other two stayed in jail. The FBI said in a statement that the arrests were conducted “without incident.”

    The compound, a shantytown deep in the New Mexico desert, was discovered on August 3. Authorities found 11 children between one and 15 years old languishing in squalid conditions. They were the “saddest living conditions and poverty I have seen,” said the local sheriff, Jerry Hogrefe…”

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