Reader’s Links, Oct. 30, 2018

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About Eeyore

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

158 Replies to “Reader’s Links, Oct. 30, 2018”

  1. Al-Shabab’s former No. 2 leader runs for office in Somalia (abcnews, Oct 30, 2018)

    “The normal-looking campaign rally in Somalia’s capital this month was anything but. Dozens of people in T-shirts bearing the smiling candidate’s image and “Security and Justice” were praising the former No. 2 leader of Africa’s deadliest Islamic extremist group, the al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab, who until recently was the target of a $5 million U.S. reward.

    Stunned, Somalia’s federal government is in an awkward spot. If Mukhtar Robow’s campaign for a regional presidency goes forward, observers say the man who once praised Osama bin Laden and tried to impose an Islamic state has a good chance at winning next month’s election…”

  2. the gateway pundit – BREAKING REPORT — EXCLUSIVE DOCUMENTS : Special Counsel and Former FBI Director Robert Mueller Accused of Rape By ‘Very Credible Witness ‘

    Special Counsel Robert Mueller was accused by a very credible witness today of rape at the St. Regis Hotel in New York City in 2010.

    A formal press conference is scheduled for Thursday at noon in Washington DC.

    The Gateway Pundit obtained a copy of the charges.

    What we know: The woman is a “very credible witness.” Her story are corroborated. The incident happened in 2010 in New York City. The woman is a professional.

    We will post the document shortly.

    The Mueller apologists are already trashing the accuser — and don’t even know who she is!

    • Mueller Wants the FBI to Look at a Scheme to Discredit Him

      The special counsel says a woman was offered money to fabricate sexual-harassment claims.

      An alleged scheme to pay off women to fabricate sexual-assault allegations against Special Counsel Robert Mueller has been referred to the FBI for further investigation, a spokesman for the special counsel’s office told The Atlantic. “When we learned last week of allegations that women were offered money to make false claims about the Special Counsel, we immediately referred the matter to the FBI for investigation,” the spokesman, Peter Carr, told me in an email on Tuesday.

      The special counsel’s office’s attention to this scheme and its decision to release a rare statement about it indicates the seriousness with which the office is taking the purported plot to discredit Mueller in the middle of an ongoing investigation.

      The special counsel’s office confirmed that the scheme was brought to its attention by several journalists who were told about it by a woman alleging that she herself had been offered roughly $20,000 by a man claiming to work for a GOP activist named Jack Burkman “to make accusations of sexual misconduct and workplace harassment against Robert Mueller.” The woman told journalists in an email, a copy of which I obtained, that she had worked for Mueller as a paralegal at the Pillsbury, Madison, and Sutro law firm in 1974, but that she “didn’t see” him much. “When I did see him, he was always very polite to me, and was never inappropriate,” the woman wrote. The firm has not returned a request for comment about whether the woman actually worked there.

      The woman explained that she was contacted by a man “with a British accent” who wanted to ask her “a couple questions about Robert Mueller, whom I worked with when I was a paralegal for Pillsbury, Madison, and Sutro in 1974. I asked him who he was working for, and he told me his boss was some sort of politics guy in Washington named Jack Burkman. I reluctantly told [him] that I had only worked with Mr. Mueller for a short period of time, before leaving that firm to have my first son.”

      She continued: “In more of an effort to get him to go away than anything else, I asked him what in the hell he wanted me to do. He said that we could not talk about it on the phone, and he asked me to download an app on my phone called Signal, which he said was more secure. Reluctantly, I downloaded the app and he called me on that app a few minutes later. He said (and I will never forget exactly what it was) ‘I want you to make accusations of sexual misconduct and workplace harassment against Robert Mueller, and I want you to sign a sworn affidavit to that effect.’” The man “offered to pay off all of my credit card debt, plus bring me a check for $20,000 if I would do” it, she wrote. “He knew exactly how much credit card debt I had, right down to the dollar, which sort of freaked me out.”

      The woman was not willing to speak to the reporters by phone, according to Scott Stedman, one of the reporters who received the letter. So portions of her story have gone uncorroborated, and her identity has not been independently confirmed. Around the time that the journalists began receiving the email, however, Burkman released a video on his Facebook page claiming, without evidence, that Mueller “has a whole lifetime history of harassing women.” On Tuesday, the day the special counsel’s office revealed that it had referred the woman’s claims to the FBI, Burkman tweeted a similar allegation.

      In an emailed statement, Burkman denied knowing the woman who originally alerted journalists to the alleged scheme and called the FBI referral “a joke, mueller wants to deflect attention from his sex assault troubles by attacking me.” He added in a separate email that “on Thursday 1200 NOON ROSSYLN HOLIDAY INN we will present a very credible witness who will allege that Mr. Mueller committed against her a sexual assault.” Mueller’s spokesman reiterated that the claims are false.

      Burkman, a conservative radio host, is known for spreading conspiracy theories. He launched his own private investigation into the murder of the DNC staffer Seth Rich, dangled uncorroborated claims of sexual harassment against a sitting member of Congress, and earlier this year offered $25,000 to FBI whistle-blowers for any information exposing wrongdoing during the 2016 election. He also promoted legislation that he authored—despite not being a member of Congress—that would ban gays from playing in the National Football League, and has hosted two fundraisers for Rick Gates—the former Trump campaign official who was indicted by Mueller late last year.

    • Special Counsel Asks FBI To Investigate ‘False’ Sex Allegations Against Robert Mueller

      The special counsel’s office has asked the FBI to investigate claims that a woman was offered $20,000 to make false sexual harassment allegations against Robert Mueller.

      “When we learned last week of allegations that women were offered money to make false claims about the special counsel, we immediately referred the matter to the FBI for investigation,” Peter Carr, a spokesman for the special counsel, told The Daily Caller News Foundation on Tuesday.

      Numerous reporters came forward Tuesday to say they received an email from a woman who claimed that she was offered $20,000 to level sexual harassment allegations against Mueller, who is leading the investigation into possible collusion between President Donald Trump’s campaign and the Russian government. The woman claimed she worked with Mueller at the law firm Pillsbury Shaw in 1974. (RELATED: Report: Mueller Will Present Findings From Russia Probe After Midterms)

      A website called The Hill Reporter first reported details of the email. Freelance reporter Yahsar Ali published a redacted version of the email, which he said he received nearly two weeks ago.

  3. Taliban: 5 freed from US military prison now in Qatar office (abcnews, Oct 30, 2018)

    “Five members of the Afghan Taliban who were freed from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay in exchange for captured American army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl have joined the insurgent group’s political office in Qatar, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said Tuesday.

    They will now be among Taliban representatives negotiating for peace in Afghanistan, a sign some negotiators in Kabul say indicates the Taliban’s desire for a peace pact…”

  4. TV Show ‘Big Bang Theory’ Ends in Sick Prayer for Death of All Trump Voters

    TV producer Chuck Lorre ends all his sitcoms with a message card flashed across the screen for a split second. And this week’s flash card contains Lorre’s prayer that God would kill all Americans who voted for or support Donald Trump.

    Lorre’s flash card serves as the logo for his production company placed at the end of every episode he produces. Sometimes they are funny, sometimes they are political. But this time Lorre has gone too far wishing for Americans to die.

    The card was caught by Newsbusters:

    Chuck Lorre Productions, #598

    My Prayer

    God, (I call you that even though I suspect thou art well beyond names and words and might actually be some sort of ineffable quantum situation), I humbly beseech thee to make thy presence known on November 6th. Demonstrate your omnipotence through us as we make ink marks on little circles in curtained booths. Of course if you, in your divine wisdom, believe a fascist, hate-filled, fear-mongering, demagogic, truth-shattering, autocratic golf cheater is what we need right now, then, you know, thy will be done. But if thou art inclined to more freedom, more love, more compassion, and just more of the good stuff thou hath been promoting in our hearts or our parietal lobes – either one, doesn’t really matter – I submissively ask that thy encourage voter turnout in that general direction. Also God, please help Bob Mueller. Guide him and make him strong, brave, wise and true. And yes, I know there must be thousands of guys named Bob Mueller, so why not help them all, just to be on the safe side. Amen.

    Oh, almost forgot, remind those who collaborate with the darkness that thou art the light, and the light is not above whipping out a little Old Testament wrath. Amen again.

  5. If the Synagogue Shooter Were Muslim, the Media Would Be Defending Him
    The double standard on Nazi and Muslim anti-Semitic violence.

    Two types of people plot attacks against Jewish synagogues and community centers: Nazis and Muslims.

    In 1999, Buford O. Furrow, a white supremacist, opened fire at a Jewish Community Center in the Los Angeles area. He wounded three little boys, their teenage female counselor and an elderly female receptionist. He told the FBI that he wanted this to be “a wake-up call to America to kill Jews.”

    While Furrow was carrying out his attack, President William Jefferson Clinton was in the White House.

    In 2000, Ali Hassan Abu Kamal and Mazin Assi attempted to firebomb a synagogue in New York.

    “A bias-motivated attempt to firebomb a synagogue?” the New York Times wondered. “Or a misguided message critical of Israeli policies against Palestinians?”

  6. If the Synagogue Shooter Were Muslim, the Media Would Be Defending Him
    The double standard on Nazi and Muslim anti-Semitic violence.
    October 30, 2018
    Daniel Greenfield
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    Two types of people plot attacks against Jewish synagogues and community centers: Nazis and Muslims.

    In 1999, Buford O. Furrow, a white supremacist, opened fire at a Jewish Community Center in the Los Angeles area. He wounded three little boys, their teenage female counselor and an elderly female receptionist. He told the FBI that he wanted this to be “a wake-up call to America to kill Jews.”

    While Furrow was carrying out his attack, President William Jefferson Clinton was in the White House.

    In 2000, Ali Hassan Abu Kamal and Mazin Assi attempted to firebomb a synagogue in New York.

    “A bias-motivated attempt to firebomb a synagogue?” the New York Times wondered. “Or a misguided message critical of Israeli policies against Palestinians?”

    In 2006, Naveed Afzal Haq used a teenage girl as a hostage to force his way into the Seattle Jewish Federation where he shot 6 women. The Muslim attacker shouted, “You Jews” at the non-Jewish marketing director and shot her in the stomach. The bookkeeper went into cardiac arrest, died at the scene, was revived and died again on the operating table and still lived to testify at Haq’s trial.

    “I want these Jews to get out,” Haq could be heard shouting on the phone.

  7. Why democracy is failing in Afghanistan (TRT, Oct 30, 2018)

    “The Afghan people risk their lives to vote in the country’s elections. Unfortunately, their leaders and the international community have completely failed to honour their sacrifices.
    Every time elections are held in Afghanistan, whether parliamentary or presidential, there follows a moment of cheer for upholding democracy. The ballot box is regarded as equivalent to democracy, as if by default.

    “Today, we proved together we will uphold democracy, casting ballots without fear,” said the Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Sunday when the parliamentary elections were held.

    Yet, these elections, like all previous parliamentary or presidential polls since 2001, were marred by allegations of corruption, vote rigging, multiple voting, ballot box stuffing and the intimidation of voters.

    So far 13,000 official complaints of irregularities in the electoral process have been registered and 60 people arrested over fraud. Violence has been widespread with more than 270 casualties, including 10 candidates and two members of the electoral commission killed.

    Dysfunctional political processes and systems have often rendered the elections near-meaningless and disregarded people’s votes.

    Daily terrorist attacks, high levels of poverty and unemployment and rampant corruption across the country have made it hard for democracy to take root in Afghanistan.

    There is no denying that the people of Afghanistan are thirsty for change. They long for security and stability.

    At every election they brave the highly dangerous security conditions, stand in long queues and put their trust in their leaders. And time and again the leaders fail them, promoting instead their own personal or group ambitions.

    It is true that the main requirements of democracy are defined as participation and opposition. In other words freedom of expression, the right to vote, the right of the political leaders to compete, and the freedom to form and join political organisations.

    It is also true that most of these elements exist in some form in Afghanistan today. So what is causing such a failure of democracy?

    A cluster of failures

    First of all, drastic inequality can seriously affect both participation and opposition. Extreme inequality in the distribution of key elements such as income, wealth, status, knowledge and military power are, according to prominent American theorist of democracy Robert Dahl, “equivalent to extreme inequalities in political resources”.

    Poverty in Afghanistan has significantly increased over the past decade according to the World Bank and a staggering 55 percent of the population are now living below the national poverty line.

    “Few Afghans have access to productive or remunerative employment. A quarter of the labour force is unemployed, and 80 percent of employment is vulnerable and insecure, comprising self-or own account employment, day labour, or unpaid work,” says the World Bank.

    According to the same report, just over 54 percent of young Afghans (in the 15-24 age group) are literate while 42 percent are neither in employment, education, or training.

    Secondly, development experts have been warning us that these issues have become endemic in Afghanistan for two overriding reasons: continuing conflict and lack of good governance.

    The continued conflict has an internal and an external angle.

    Externally, Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) is accused of providing direct military and intelligence aid to both the Taliban and the vicious Haqqani network, giving its leaders a safe haven. Conventional wisdom follows that without ISI support these groups could not have carried out complex attacks nor sustained their operations over such a long period.

    Internally, the security and intelligence apparatus in Afghanistan has been dysfunctional, unable to deal effectively with the ensuing conflict. It is riddled with corruption and division. It lacks a comprehensive strategy and capable leadership.

    And yet we see President Ghani appointing a strikingly young former ambassador, Hamdullah Mohib, as the new national security advisor.

    Mohib has no experience in national security. During two controversial presidential elections in 2009 and 2014 he was one of President Ghani’s social media campaign aids. It was from there that he was promoted to the level of ambassador and now to arguably one of the most sensitive, and significant, posts in the government.

    Lack of good governance and ensuing corruption are both the making of internal political players. They are blocking development and political progress.

    Transparency International ranks Afghanistan near-bottom of its Corruption Perceptions Index for 2017. It says these issues threaten the country’s state-building process.

    The third reason for the failure of democracy in Afghanistan is that the process of political transformation has been part of a US plan. It has not developed from within Afghan society.

    American officials have always had the final determining role in every presidential election since 2001. In order to give a semblance of stability they have patched up differences at the last minute and negotiated deals – and essentially compromises.

    In fact, not just in Afghanistan but in many parts of the world US foreign intervention strategy has, for decades, comprised a military and a political component, promising to build democracy.

    We have many examples of US foreign interventions but not even one case of creating a successful democracy in the aftermath.

    Democracy, a highly contested term and a very complex political structure, does not end at the ballot box.

    A key characteristic of democracy is the continuing responsiveness of the government to the preferences and demands of all its citizens; an element that is sadly missing in Afghanistan.

    Afghan politicians and the international community are equally responsible for failing the people of Afghanistan.

    Disclaimer: The viewpoints expressed by the authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions, viewpoints and editorial policies of TRT World.”

  8. Nigerian Crackdown on Shi’ite Group Sparks Fears of Escalation (voanews, Oct 30, 2018)

    “Nigerian police fired shots and tear gas at thousands of supporters of an imprisoned Shi’ite cleric in Abuja on Tuesday, just a day after three people were killed in similar clashes that sparked warnings to the government that a heavy-handed crackdown could radicalize the group.

    At least six Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) supporters have now been killed since Saturday during protests calling for the release of Ibrahim Zakzaky, who has been in custody since December 2015.

    Several thousand IMN members were marching peacefully in central Abuja but then armed police fired into the crowd to disperse the procession, said AFP reporters at the scene.

    At least six injured IMN members were taken away in cars while the area was patrolled by dozens of police, they added.

    “A lot of our people had been injured, so far we don’t have any record of death,” IMN spokesman Ibrahim Musa told AFP.

    Nigeria’s military said three IMN supporters were killed during another protest on the outskirts of Abuja on Monday.

    The army said troops and police “repelled the attack” and that IMN “fired weapons” and threw stones and Molotov cocktails.

    AFP photographs of the aftermath showed several bodies of civilians on the ground near police but it was unclear whether they were dead or injured.

    On Saturday, three other IMN members were killed during protests in Abuja.

    The army claimed the protesters attacked a military convoy and tried to steal weapons and ammunition — an account the IMN “categorically” denies.

    IMN spokesman Musa claimed 27 people have been killed since Saturday and that the death toll could be higher since “scores” of people were injured and troops took away others.

    “We are working towards their release to us for burial,” Musa said.

    Long-running opposition

    Human rights group Amnesty International said on Monday that reports that troops fired live bullets at protesters were “very disturbing” and would be unlawful if they were unarmed.

    The IMN has staged a series of demonstrations demanding the release of leader Zakzaky, who has been detained since bloody clashes broke out in the northern city of Zaria in 2015.

    Then, the military was accused of killing more than 300 IMN supporters and burying them in mass graves.

    Zakzaky has been at loggerheads with Nigeria’s secular authorities for years because of his calls for an Iranian-style Islamic revolution. Northern Nigeria is majority Sunni Muslim.

    The cleric, who is in his mid-sixties and lost the sight in one eye during the 2015 clashes, has been seen in public only twice since he was detained.

    Nigeria’s government has previously ignored a court order to release Zakzaky and his wife.

    In April, at least 115 IMN supporters were arrested during protests in Abuja during which police used tear gas and water cannon.

    IMN processions for the annual Ashura festival have frequently been flashpoints. In November 2016, at least 10 people were killed when police opened fire near the northern city of Kano.

    Radicalization warning

    Sustained clashes and the military’s use of deadly force have raised fears of a repeat of the 2009 crackdown on the Islamist group Boko Haram in northeast Nigeria.

    Then, some 800 people, including Boko Haram leader Mohammed Yusuf, were killed in the Borno state capital Maiduguri, forcing the group underground.

    They then re-emerged a more deadly force under Yusuf’s deputy, Abubakar Shekau. The insurgency since then has killed more than 27,000 people and displaced more than two million others.

    Amaechi Nwokolo, a security analyst at the Roman Institute for International Studies in Abuja, said: “It appears we are not learning from our past mistakes.”

    He said the security forces had “no right to use that maximum force” on unarmed protesters, warning that it might “motivate others to radicalize”.

    “If we go back to the formative days of Boko Haram, it was the killing of some innocent people that actually galvanized recruitment. That’s how terrorism works.”

    Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, a former military ruler, was elected in 2015 on a promise to defeat Boko Haram and bring greater security.

    But although weakened, Boko Haram has persisted in its attacks. In addition, there has been a resurgence of violence in the long-running resources conflict between sedentary farmers and nomadic herders.”

  9. Houthis Seize Wheat Shipments From WFP (aawsat, Oct 30, 2018)

    “Houthi militias have seized 51 tons of wheat from the World Food Program (WFP) in Hodeidah province, according to Yemen’s official Saba news agency.

    “This act violates all international and humanitarian laws and contributes to the deterioration of the humanitarian situation and the suffering of millions of Yemenis,” said Chairman of the Higher Committee for Relief Abdul Raqib Fatah.

    He also called on UN Humanitarian Coordinator Lisa Grande to put pressure on Houthi militias to release the 51 tons of WFP wheat stocks in Hodeidah province that is enough for 3.7 million people, according to WFP spokesman Herve Verheusel.

    Fatah demanded “the need for the immediate release of wheat and stop of all acts that are related to the relief and humanitarian sides.”

    He held Houthis fully responsible for doubling Yemeni people’s suffering through the continued detention of relief convoys, looting of aid and putting obstacles in front of local and international relief organizations…”

  10. Israel stands with Hungary, denouncing George Soros

    Nazi collaborator George Soros, who described his work confiscating property from the Jews as “the happiest days of my life,” is a hero of the antisemitic left.

    Pamela Geller

    .@RepAdamSchiff is either evil or stupid. @georgesoros describes his home as an antisemitic. He was a Nazi collaborator who remembers his work confiscating the property of the Jews as “the happiest days of my life” He funds world’s worst Jewhating groups. Schiff – evil or stupid?
    Jay Caruso

    .@RepAdamSchiff on with @jaketapper falsely claimed criticism of George Soros is driven entirely by the fact that he’s Jewish. This is one area I am going to push back that BS. Now, before I get “called out” for “defending” anti-Semitism, I will say there is no

    Soros has spent a large part of his wealth funding far left groups masking themselves as pro-democracy and human rights groups in efforts to undermine legal migration.

    But Hungary’s popular nationalist government are not fans of the billionaire Soros. The latest, a campaign backed by Prime Minister Viktor Orban in which Soros is singled out as an enemy of the state.

    “Let’s not allow Soros to have the last laugh” billboards show a picture of the 86-year-old financier though some have accused it of being anti-Semitic. However, as Mr. Soros himself worked for the Nazi’s taking property from his fellow Jews as a young man it is unclear why.

    The Israeli ambassador to Hungary in a statement said it “evokes sad memories but also sows hatred and fear”.

    click to real more

  11. ADL head warns: U.S. at risk of ‘normalizing’ antisemitism

    Greenblatt blames Trump, of course, while ignoring the open and violent Jew-hatred coming from the left. The ADL did good work once upon a time, fifty years ago. But its mission has morphed. Instead of protecting the Jewish people, they have aligned with the jihad force and have used their considerable influence and resources to go after proud Jews and Zionists (including me), while giving vicious Muslim antisemites sanction and cover. The ADL had a hand in norming Jew-hatred — attacking proud Jews and standing with anti-Semites. They cant wash the sins from their hands with platitudes now. For ignoring leftist Jew-hatred and even working in tandem with those who propagate it, Greenblatt, if there were any proud Jews left in the ADL. should be made to resign in disgrace. But he won’t be.

    Richard: I hate to say it but she is right the Dems are trying to normalize anti-semitism.

  12. Sechs Männer sollen Mädchen (15) vergewaltigt haben (Bild, Oct 30, 2018),view=amp.bildMobile.html?__twitter_impression=true

    “30.10.2018 – 19:17 Uhr
    München – Die Münchner Polizei hat laut „Bayerischem Rundfunk“ fünf afghanische Flüchtlinge festgenommen, ein weiterer mutmaßlicher Täter sei auf der Flucht. Der Vorwurf: Sie sollen sich an einem 15-jährigen Mädchen vergangen haben.

    Die Staatsanwaltschaft München bestätigte auf BILD-Nachfrage Ermittlungen in einem Sexualdelikt und die Festnahme mehrerer Personen. Weiter wollte sich ein Sprecher dazu nicht äußern.

    Der Fall: Das Mädchen, das nach BILD-Informationen unter Betreuung steht, hatte Ende September Anzeige gegen ihren Lebensgefährten erstattet. Der Asylbewerber soll ihr massiv verbal gedroht und sie dadurch zum Geschlechtsverkehr gezwungen haben.

    Auch den Geschlechtsverkehr mit mehreren Freunden ihres Partners soll sie, derart eingeschüchtert, jeweils an mehreren Tagen über sich ergehen lassen haben. Es soll sich jeweils um Einzeltaten gehandelt haben. Körperliche Gewalt habe bei den Vorfällen keine Rolle gespielt.

    Neben dem Partner des mutmaßlichen Opfers wurden auch vier weitere Flüchtlinge (alle zwischen 20 und 25 Jahre) festgenommen. Bei den mutmaßlichen Tätern handelt es sich um anerkannte Asylbewerber. Gegen sie wurde inzwischen wegen des Verdachts der Vergewaltigung Haftbefehl erlassen, sie befinden sich in U-Haft.

    Die Taten sollen sich bereits Ende September abgespielt haben. Schon vor rund vier Wochen gab es erste Festnahmen.

    Bisher stehen noch einige Vernehmungen aus, um die Aussagen des mutmaßlichen Opfers zu untermauern, wohl auch deshalb haben die Behörden den Fall bis jetzt nicht öffentlich gemacht.

    Die Inhaftierten räumen den Geschlechtsverkehr mit der Minderjährigen zum Teil zwar ein, erklärten aber, er habe einvernehmlich stattgefunden.”

  13. Children of Canadians need rescue from Syria, group tells federal government

    OTTAWA — Canadian infants and children being held in Syria deserve the federal government’s help to get them out before winter comes, says a group representing them here.

    The Canadians detained by Kurdish authorities in Syrian territory include nine families and more than 10 children, including some who were taken to Syria at young ages and others who were born there, said Alexandra Bain, the director of Families Against Violent Extremism.

    Bain said the children are facing the outbreak of disease and a harsh winter and the Canadian government has a duty to protect its citizens. She said they live on a diet of rice and pasta and there are no diapers or milk for the infants.

    Bain said her group and another volunteer organization want to foot the cost of getting these Canadians out of a war zone and are willing to do the necessary work on the ground, but that the government has to help them.

    All those imprisoned in Syria should be vetted by Canadian authorities and it is possible some should face charges for their activities abroad, she added.

    “They were all captured and detained in a war zone, and they must be thoroughly investigated by Canada’s security services and some will undoubtedly face justice,” said Bain.

    Global News has reported that at least 13 Canadians — three alleged terrorists, their wives and children — are currently being detained in Syria.

    The group includes Jack Letts, the British-raised son of a Canadian father and British mother, who has been dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media. His father, John, joined Bains on Parliament Hill on Tuesday, calling for the release of the Canadians. He branded as “fake news” the reports of his son’s being a terrorist, and laid the blame at the foot of a British journalist, whose use of the moniker stuck.

    John Letts told the Hill press conference that he thinks his son is innocent and that he needs treatment for various illnesses contracted while in prison. He says his son was never involved in the violence perpetrated by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, also known as ISIS or Daesh.

    “I want everyone here to know what we know: that Jack worked with others in the religious opposition to ISIS in Raqqa (the city the Islamic State claimed as its capital), that he condemned ISIS on social media, and that he wants to spend the rest of his life living peacefully and bearing witness against ISIS,” Letts said.

    In a previous letter to Canadian MPs, Letts wrote that his son is a “naive young person who went to Syria hoping to help create a PEACEFUL, UTOPIAN, MUSLIM STATE” and who wound up trapped when Islamic terrorists took control of exit points.

    Letts says that by saying that publicly he is violating British court orders that could get him thrown in jail when he returns to the country.

    He and his wife, Sally Lane, were charged by British police in 2016 with funding terrorism after they tried to send their son money. In his letter, Letts wrote that the money was to pay “people smugglers,” who they believed had the only way to get their son out of Syria.

    Letts said in his letter that his son’s Kurdish jailers have stated publicly that they’re willing to hand his son over to Canadian authorities. He also maintains Global Affairs Canada told the family for months that it was working to get their son released but that the department recently decided it’s too dangerous.

    “It obviously has something to do with the upcoming election,” Letts said Tuesday. “We have fairly good evidence of the British having cracked the whip and said you have to toe the line — no one breaks the line of letting people back — and I think Canada is responding to that.”

    Earlier this month, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer criticized the Trudeau government over reports that consular officials initiated contact with Letts, whom Scheer described as a “known jihadi fighter.”

    Letts calls Scheer’s assertions about his son a lie.

    Dad of Canadian held in Syria asks for help to get him, 18 others home

    OTTAWA (AFP) – The father of a British-Canadian dual national held by Kurds in Syria pleaded Tuesday for Ottawa’s help to rescue him and at least 18 other Canadians, amid concerns that some of them pose a security risk.

    Jack Letts, 23, has been held in Syria for 18 months, his father John told reporters in Ottawa.

    “I need your help to save my son’s life,” said Letts, who appeared at a press conference with Alexandra Bain, director of Families Against Violent Extremism.

    They said nine Canadians, including the younger Letts, as well as at least 10 of their children — some taken to Syria, some born in the war zone — are currently being held by Kurdish authorities on Syrian soil.

    Bain said they face a cold winter ahead, are given little to eat, are not provided an education and tuberculosis has started to spread in the camps.

    “These people need to be brought home to Canada and they need to be brought home now,” Bain said.

    The government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said it will not risk sending officials to Syria to negotiate for their release, citing security concerns.

    Ottawa has also raised concerns about the collection of evidence in conflict zones to prosecute returnees under Canadian terrorism laws.

    “We are aware of Canadian citizens being detained in Syria,” foreign ministry spokesman Stefano Maron told AFP.

    “Given the security situation on the ground, the government of Canada’s ability to provide consular assistance in any part of Syria is extremely limited,” he said.

    “Canada is engaged in these cases and is providing assistance, to the limited extent possible,” including verifying their “whereabouts and well-being,” Maron added.

    The families of detainees and their supporters were to meet later Tuesday with senior Canadian foreign ministry officials to pitch their proposal for a brokered return.

    Letts and Bain said the human rights organization Reprieve would travel to camps in northern Syria to help facilitate their return, but only if Canada agrees to supply the returnees with travel documents.

    To alleviate public concerns about repatriating Canadians with possible terror links, Bain said returnees would agree to “voluntary security arrangements,” without elaborating on the terms.

    Reprieve has previously helped repatriate an American from Syria under similar circumstances, Bain noted.

    The reason for Letts’ presence in Syria is somewhat unclear.

    British media have suggested he is fighting for extremist groups, but his father said he was “not a violent jihadist” though he might have been “naive and wrong” to go to Syria.

    Canadian officials had been trying to secure Letts’ return home but suddenly halted their efforts in May, the father said.

    “They just said there’s nothing we can do because it’s too dangerous,” he told reporters, holding back tears.

    The father suggested pressure on Canada from Britain, which has refused to take Jack back, or the upcoming Canadian election in 2019 may have factored into the decision.


    Father of ‘Jihadi Jack’: We need your help to save our son’s life

    • Seth Frantzman @sfrantzman
      I’ve always been perplexed by what motivates people to downplay, excuse or whitewash #ISIScrimes. From the first moment when they began executions in Camp Speicher and then expelling Christians in Nineveh and then the Yazidi genocide in 2014, I was sickened by the abuses

      For me it was clear this was not *just* another kind of Islamist extremism, it was building upon Al Qaeda, Taliban, Shabab, Boko Haram and other blocks of extremism and seeking to create something new, a total state, like Nazism built on fascism, or Stalinism on Communism

      I understood the narrative presented by some on social media like Kenneth Roth in 2014 claiming that ISIS was a reaction to abuses by Maliki’s sectarian government. But fascism/Nazism was also a reaction to things as well. So, that doesn’t excuse its crimes

      And yet, as ISIS increased its crimes, committing genocide, slavery, expulsion of hundreds of thousands, the excuse industry grew along with it. We were told first it was a reaction to abuses.

      Then we were told that it’s not Islamist, in fact it’s run by Ba’athists and it’s all some complex conspiracy involving Iran or something. Everything to deflect from any kind of pigeonholing of it into a religious extremist context.

      Then we were told that politicians in the West are “fueling” ISIS, just like Maliki “fueled” ISIS or Assad “fueled” ISIS, or Iran “fueled” ISIS. We were told that Le Pen or others being elected was “driving” people to ISIS.

      And then we’ve been told that ISIS, after all is said and done, was just a kind of efficient bureaucracy. Forgotten are the mass graves, the 400,000 still in IDP camps, the 3,000 missing Yazidis. Even the ongoing war in Syria, is forgotten. As people move on.

      I’ve been working on a book about the war on ISIS, and the post-ISIS era. And I’ve had difficulty with people saying “this is an old topic,” and “but it’s defeated.” And yet it is not defeated and the victims are still searching for loved ones and want their homes back

      So it perplexes me the inability of people to see victims. They prefer using ISIS as a talking point, or prefer to downplay it. They just can’t take a minute to speak to victims. Like one takes a time to read Night about the Holocaust. Just take a moment. And then #think

  14. Actor James Cromwell warns of ‘blood in the streets’ if Democrats don’t win election

    Character actor James Cromwell was honored at the fourth annual Carney Awards, where he used his platform to call for change in the United States and warn of violence if President Trump and his allies remain in office.

    Cromwell, a noted character actor known for roles in projects such as “Babe,” “The Green Mile,” “Big Hero 6,” “Boardwalk Empire” and “American Horror Story,” is also a political activist who has worked with organizations such as the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. He’s frequently been arrested for his role in planned, peaceful protests at places like SeaWorld and a natural gas power plant in New York.

    Speaking to Variety at the event, he warned of the turn that he sees America taking and cautioned there will be “blood in the streets” if Republicans remain in control.

    “This is nascent fascism. We always had a turnkey, totalitarian state — all we needed was an excuse, and all the institutions were in place to turn this into pure fascism,” Cromwell said. “If we don’t stop [President Trump] now, then we will have a revolution for real. Then there will be blood in the streets.”

    The star, who previously played George H.W. Bush in Oliver Stone’s “W,” echoed these sentiments during his acceptance speech, where he warned that he believes the country is headed toward the possibility of a violent revolution.

    “We’re living in very curious times, and something is coming up which is desperately important to this country and to this planet, and that is an election, in which hopefully in some measure we are going to take back our democracy,” he said. “We will have a government that represents us and not the donor class. We will cut through the corruption, [and] we won’t have to do what comes next, which is either a non-violent revolution or a violent one, because this has got to end.”

    Comedian Patton Oswalt hosted the event, which honored fellow character actors such as Joe Morton, Jessica Walter, Joe Pantoliano, Bruce Greenwood and M. Emmet Walsh.

  15. Crisis looms as Bosnia races to shelter migrants before winter

    With winter knocking at the door, Bosnia is racing to avert a humanitarian crisis for thousands of EU-bound migrants crossing its mountainous terrain and sleeping without proper shelter as temperatures drop.

    The poor Balkan state has become a well-trodden stop on the new route to the European Union for migrants escaping war and poverty in Asia, the Middle East and North Africa.

  16. Saudi Arabia Arrests 17 Filipinos For Attending Halloween Party In Riyadh

    The party organisers did not have the appropriate permission to do so, but the Filipino embassy fears that the charges relate to the fact that there were men and women at the party.

    Saudi Arabia has arrested 17 Filipinos for attending a Halloween party at which there were men and women, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Tuesday.

    The Philippine Ambassador to Riyadh, Adnan Alonto, sent a report to the foreign department explaining that a group of Saudi intelligence officers entered a venue in Riyadh where a Halloween party was being held and arrested those attending, reports Efe news.

    Alonto has asked for access to the arrested Filipinos in Al Nisa prison, although he has not yet received an answer, as well as accurate information on the charges against them, something that is unclear at the moment.

    At first, authorities reported that the party organisers did not have the appropriate permission to do so, but the Filipino embassy fears that the charges relate to the fact that there were men and women at the party.

    “Saudi laws strictly prohibit unattached males and females from being seen together in public. The compound was raided after neighbours complained of loud noise,” the statement said.

    The embassy in Riyadh has issued a notice to the Philippine community in the country urging them to be mindful of local sensitivities.

    According to foreign data, some 3,000 Filipinos leave their country each day for temporary employment contracts abroad, most of them in Arab countries where women tend to be employed as domestic help and men in the construction sector.

    Around 10 million Filipino migrant workers abroad send their remittances back home which accounted for 10.46 per cent of Philippine GDP in 2017, according to the World Bank.

  17. DAILY MAIL -500 protesters march through German town after seven Syrian migrants are arrested for gang-rape of 18-year-old student

    The men aged 19 to 29 raped her in bushes for four hours outside a nightclub in Freiburg, Germany
    A large demonstration was organised by the nationalist AfD party last night through the city centre
    Police clashed with counter-protesters as the mayor called for ‘peace’ and no more ‘further violence’
    Chief suspect is accused of selling the girl ecstasy, drugging her before inviting others to join in the assault

  18. Man turns himself in to police after woman snaps a pic of ‘staring’ pervert whom she says masturbated onto her clothes and backpack (dailymail, Oct 29, 2018)

    “A man who was riding the New York subway and ejaculated onto a woman’s backside and backpack during rush hour has turned himself in to police.

    The 27-year-old victim was riding on a southbound D train in Midtown around 8am on October 1 then the stranger identified by police as 18-year-old Ibrahim Mehsin performed the lewd act.

    The woman had been standing at one end of the train car when the creep who was wearing a black T-shirt and black pants got on the train — boarded the train at West 59th Street and Columbus Circle and stood behind her, police said…”

  19. US in Touch With Turkey, SDF Regarding Ankara’s Planned Offensive in Syria (sputniknews, Oct 30, 2018)

    “The United States has been in contact with both Turkey and the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) following Ankara’s announcement it will launch an operation against the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) to the east of the Euphrates River, Pentagon spokesperson Sean Robertson told Sputnik on Tuesday.

    The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) continue to be a devoted partner of the United States in the fights against the Daesh* terrorist group, Sean Robertson said.

    Earlier in the day, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Ankara will soon begin a large-scale operation against the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG).

    “We are aware of Turkish statements about a planned offensive into northeast Syria and have been in touch with Turkey and the SDF to de-escalate the situation,” he said.

    Robertson stressed that Turkey is a NATO ally and a key partner in the global coalition to defeat the Daesh terrorist group, and the United States remains fully committed to Turkey’s border security.

    “We encourage all parties to avoid escalation and focus on the most important task of defeating ISIS,” he added…”

  20. Richard: He is tied in with Mueller but I don’t know the details, I am sure Yucki knows them.

    Whitey Bulger, infamous Boston mob boss, killed in prison, multiple reports say
    Ryan Gaydos
    By Ryan Gaydos | Fox News

    Infamous Boston mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger – who was a fugitive for 16 years, was sentenced to life in prison in 2013 and was portrayed in film by Johnny Depp – was killed at a West Virginia prison on Tuesday, the day he arrived at the facility, multiple reports say. He was 89.

    Bulger was killed at a West Virginia prison, according to the Boston Globe. He was transferred to the high-security USP Hazelton on Tuesday morning in Bruceton Mills. He was recently moved from a prison in Florida and had a stop in Oklahoma City before arriving in West Virginia.

  21. Armed Migrants in Caravan Opened Fire on Mexican Cops, Say Authorities

    Mexican authorities arrested two Hondurans who allegedly shot at federal police officers escorting the migrant caravan across the southern state of Chiapas. The attack follows shortly after government warnings about Molotov cocktail attacks around a second caravan near the border with Guatemala.

    The attack took place near Ignacio Zaragoza, Chiapas, when members of Mexico’s Federal Police were escorting the migrant caravan as part of “Operativo Caminante” or “Operation Walker” across the southern border state. According to Mexico’s Interior Secretariat, two men identified only as 22-year-old “Jerson” and 17-year-old “Carlos” spotted the group of police officers guarding the caravan and began firing at them.

    The attackers’ pistol jammed, allowing police officers to arrest them without any injuries. Federal authorities seized a .380 caliber Glock with nine rounds still in the magazine.

  22. The Wall Isn’t Enough. Can We Stomach What Is?

    America’s illegal immigration problem (somehow) just got a whole lot worse.

    As we speak, a second migrant caravan is forming at the Honduran border, before it’s expected to march on the U.S. border. The second caravan reportedly plans to follow the larger caravan of more than 7,000 migrants to the Mexican border town of Reynosa — only 15 miles from McAllen, Texas. All in all, we’re looking at 10,000 illegal immigrants marching on the United States, with no regard for our immigration laws or right to self-sovereignty.

    The Department of Homeland Security has already concluded the illegal caravan includes gang members and other criminals, in addition to unidentified individuals from the Middle East. President Donald Trump has rightly declared a “national emergency,” citing the migrants’ criminal backgrounds and potential threat of terrorism.

  23. Keep NYC Trash Free’: Images of Trump Supporters Show Up on NYC Garbage Cans

    Images of Trump supporters and Boston sports fans have turned up on garbage can and train station posters in New York City under the slogan “Keep NYC Trash Free.”

    The artwork was reportedly done by street artist Winston Tseng and began showing up on trash cans where a public service announcement would normally be.

    One shows a man wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat with a Confederate flag tattoo on his arm and a Chick-fil-A cup in his hand.

  24. Netherlands Refuses to Extradite Drug Lord Said Chaou to Morocco (moroccoworldnews, Oct 30, 2018)

    “The Netherlands’ Supreme Court has upheld the decision of the Zeeland-West Brabant Court not to extradite suspected drug lord Said Chaou to Morocco.

    The Supreme Court’s judgment could have consequences for political cooperation between Netherland and Morocco, Dutch Crimesite reported October 30.

    The Dutch police arrested Chaou in June 2017 on charges of “drug trafficking, corruption, and criminal conspiracy.”

    On February 22, the Dutch Zeeland-West Brabant court ruled against Chaou’s extradition to Morocco with the justification that he would not receive a “fair trial” in his home country.

    However, the Dutch prosecution service did not agree with the decision and made an appeal to the Dutch Supreme Court.

    According to the prosecution service, the Zeeland-West Brabant court incorrectly assumed that Chaou would not receive a fair trial. The court’s assumption was based on an argument that Morocco had “tortured Chaou’s co-defendants and treated them in an inhuman manner” to force them to give false testimony against Chaou.

    On October 2, the Dutch advocate general advised the Supreme Court to support the Dutch prosecution service’s appeal. He said that the Supreme Court should consider Morocco’s extradition request, Dutch newspaper Bode reported.

    However, the Supreme Court did not take his advice into consideration.

    According to Crimesite, the prosecution service did not see a real risk of human rights violations in Morocco.

    Co-defendants’ testimonials ‘cannot be used in the Netherlands’
    Chaou’s lawyer Inez Weski said that Chaou’s co-defendants were heard in Morocco and their testimonials were used in Dutch criminal cases, reported Crimesite.

    If the Dutch Supreme Court supports the assumption that Chaou’s co-defendants made their testimonials under torture, “it means the testimonials cannot be used in the Netherlands,” Weski asserted.

    Weski believes that the Supreme Court’s decision “will certainly have consequences for cooperation between the judiciary and the police in the Netherlands and those in Morocco.”

    After several months of discussions with Dutch authorities, Chaou’s case nearly caused a diplomatic crisis between the two countries. In June 2017, Morocco decided to recall its ambassador to the Hague for consultation.

    In Morocco, Chaou faces charges of criminal gang formation, corruption, and international drug trafficking.

    Chaou was born in the Rif region, north of Morocco. He was an MP in the Moroccan Parliament between 2007 and 2010 before he Morocco in March 2010.”

  25. Top court to announce verdict in Aasia Bibi case tomorrow (tribune, Oct 30, 2018)

    “The Supreme Court of Pakistan is set to announce much awaited judgment in Aasia Bibi case on Wednesday.

    The top court reserved its ruling on October 8 on the accused’s plea against her conviction.

    The 51-year-old Christian woman has been on the death row since November 2010 after she was convicted on charges of committing blasphemy during an argument with two Muslim women in Sheikhupura.

    Her case gained prominence after then Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer pleaded for a retrial of her case and was subsequently shot dead by one of his guards, Mumtaz Qadri, in January, 2011.

    In October 2014, the Lahore High Court upheld Aasia’s death sentence. However, in July 2015, the SC stayed the execution.

    After a three-year hiatus, a three-judge special bench, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar, and comprising Justice Asif Saeed Khosa and Justice Mazhar Alam Miankhel, heard the appeal.

    The hearing lasted nearly two hours and 45 minutes, during which both the prosecution and defence presented their points of view over the conviction.

    Members of civil society, including veteran politician Farhatullah Babar, were in attendance during the proceeding.

    Unlike previous hearings, a few religious clerics were present inside and outside the courtroom.

    The bench restrained the media from discussing, publishing or airing any comment about the proceedings till the announcement of the judgment.

    During the hearing, the bench pointed out several discrepancies in the statements of the prosecution and the witnesses.”

  26. Former judge shot dead in Rawalpindi targeted killing (tribune, Oct 30, 2018)

    “Unidentified persons gunned down a former judge in an apparent incident of targeted killing, in Rawalpindi on Tuesday.

    According to Express News, the assailants opened fire on Justice (retd) Mehmood Akhter in Mandra, Chakwal road. The firing occurred when the former judge was traveling to his area of origin along-with his family to attend a funeral.

    Police say the attackers targeted the judge and opened fire at him. The law enforcement agency (LEA) further said that Akhter’s wife threw stones at the fleeing attackers, who shot at the family again, injuring the former judge’s niece. The girl was rushed to the nearest hospital.

    Police further said they have gathered evidences from the crime scene and begun and investigation. The LEA suspected that an earlier dispute over a killing may have been the reason behind the fresh incident.

    In April, a retired army officer was shot dead by one of his friends at the latter’s house in Bahria Town phase-III, Islamabad. Lieutenant Colonel (retd) Khurram Kiani belonged to the batch of PMA-78 and was working at the Defence Housing Authority in Rawalpindi.”

  27. Anti-Muslim sentiment drives Muslims into US politics (AA, Oct 30, 2018)

    “Hate directed towards Islam has motivated many Muslims in the United States to enter politics, said a Muslim lawyer and contributing opinion writer for The New York Times.

    In an op-ed published Tuesday, Wajahat Ali said Muslims’ presence in American politics “probably inspires fear” among those who support a ban on travelers from several Muslim-majority countries, a wall along the Mexican border and increased restrictions on refugees.

    Ali cited a report by The Associated Press in July which revealed that it “is precisely the bigotry and hate that has been directed toward Islam — including in remarks and tweets by U.S. President Donald Trump — that has motivated so many Muslims to enter the political arena”.

    According to Emgage, a Muslim civil rights group, up to 100 Muslims filed to run for statewide or national office this year.

    In early August, Rashida Tlaib, a Palestinian-American and former Michigan state legislator, won a narrow victory in the state’s Democratic primaries, edging out Detroit City Council President Brenda Jones, and is on track to become the first Muslim woman in Congress.

    Ilhan Omar, a Somali-American who came to the U.S. over two decades ago as a refugee from Kenya, is expected to win in midterm elections next month, replacing Representative Keith Ellison in Minnesota.

    “A majority of Muslim candidates are not running with their religion on their sleeves but instead as Democrats promoting unabashedly progressive platforms,” said Ali.

    These Muslim political veterans and upstarts are not the first to show that “deeply held religious beliefs” can inspire a commitment to social justice, he said.

    “But at a time when the hypocrisy of many who claim to represent the Christian religious right is especially glaring, they provide the latest reminder that being devout doesn’t have to — and shouldn’t — go hand in hand with attacks on women, minorities and poor people,” he wrote.

    “Muslims are here, they’re running for office, and a few are going to Washington, where they’ll do something many members of Congress have failed to do for a long time: serve God by serving people,” said Ali.”

  28. Egypt, an abundant hunting ground for organ traffickers (france24, Oct 30, 2018)

    “Egypt is one of the countries most affected by organ trafficking. Widespread poverty means criminal gangs can easily trick or pressure people into selling their organs. While authorities have passed a law specifically designed at combatting this illegal trade, big loopholes remain. Our team in Egypt has more.”

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