Contributor’s Links post for January 28th, 2019

Daily Links Post graphic

Each day at just after midnight Eastern, a post like this one is created for contributors and readers of this site to upload news links and video links on the issues that concern this site. Most notably, Islam and its effects on Classical Civilization, and various forms of leftism from Soviet era communism, to postmodernism and all the flavours of galloping statism and totalitarianism such as Nazism and Fascism which are increasingly snuffing out the classical liberalism which created our near, miraculous civilization the West has been building since the time of Socrates.

This document was written around the time this site was created, for those who wish to understand what this site is about. And while our understanding of the world and events has grown since then, the basic ideas remain sound and true to the purpose.

So please post all links, thoughts and ideas that you feel will benefit the readers of this site to the comments under this post each day. And thank you all for your contributions.

This is the new Samizdat. We muse use it while we can.

About Eeyore

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

161 Replies to “Contributor’s Links post for January 28th, 2019”

  1. DEUTSCHE WELLE – China: The problem of growing anti-muslim sentiment

    Muslim minority groups in China are coming under growing pressure by Chinese authorities.

    From alleged re-education camps in western Xinjiang to toughter controls on mosques, Beijing says it’s simply trying to rein in extremism.

    But Islamophobia in China is finding more subtle outlets too.

  2. DEUTSCHE WELLE – Too Young to Say “I Do” – Child Marriage in Indonesia

    Ibu Rayhan was married off at the age of eleven and became pregnant soon afterwards. Today she is fighting to stop child marriages in Indonesia.

    On the Indonesian island of Lombok, men traditionally have the say.

    Women and girls are expected to obey their wishes. In Indonesia, around one in every seven girls is married before the age of 18.

    Instead of attending school or getting an education, many child brides are subjected to beatings and abuse.

    Ibu Rayhan knows this only too well; she was married off at the age of 11.

    Now, together with Ulla, a fellow activist, she visits villages on Lombok and tries to change attitudes — especially among the boys.

  3. Deutsche Welle –German insurer must pay for transgender beard removal

    + video

    A transgender woman has won a court victory in Germany after demanding treatment by a beautician. The woman’s afternoon beard growth was causing her psychological distress.

    A German court ruled on Monday that a public health insurance company must pay for transsexual customers to have their beard hair removed, even if it is done by a beautician.

    The case related to a woman from Hanover who was born a man in 1972 and who had been certified transsexual by a doctor in 2015. The court found heavy beard growth had caused the plaintiff difficulties in coping. Her beard growth required her to shave again each afternoon and then apply camouflaging make-up.

    Hair removal treatment from a dermatologist had given the patient skin inflammation, the court found, but similar treatment from a trained cosmetician did not cause any skin reaction. The woman’s health insurance company refused to pay for the treatment unless it was performed by a doctor.

    The court ruled that this treatment, although not performed by a doctor, should still be covered by health insurance given the side effects of the dermatologist treatment.

    The verdict followed an earlier ruling by the Federal Administrative Court that health insurance companies must pay for treatment that helps reduce psychological suffering for transsexual people during their transition and allow them to achieve the appearance of their target gender.

    The treatment in question involves inserting a tiny needle into hair follicles and pulsing electricity through it, permanently destroying the hair-growth cells. The technique requires a skilled operator, and even then can take YEARS OF TREATMENT SESSIONS to fully remove male facial hair.

    ITALIAN TV -1989 – the Bandiera Sisters –

    • Perhaps he should give up pretending to be something he is not,genetics can not be changed to suit the individual fantasies of perverts.

  4. CBC – Doug Ford met Jordan Peterson, appointment calendar reveals

    Ontario’s premier is not posting a daily itinerary, so CBC News made freedom of information request

    Ontario Premier Doug Ford held a one-on-one meeting with Jordan Peterson a week after the controversial university professor publicly urged Ford to abolish the province’s human rights commission, CBC News has learned.

    The meeting was revealed in Ford’s appointment calendar for October and November, obtained through a freedom of information request. CBC News made the request because Ford is not providing the media with his daily public itinerary, breaking from the practice of previous premiers.

    CBC News cannot find any record of Ford or Peterson publicly mentioning that their Oct. 18 meeting took place.

    Ford tweeted about several of his other private meetings around that date: with Dianne Martin, CEO of the Registered Practical Nurses Association, with Susan Le Jeune the British high commissioner to Canada, and with Tim Hudak, the former PC leader who is now CEO of the Ontario Real Estate Association.

    Ford met with Peterson “to discuss free speech on Ontario’s university and college campuses,” the premier’s press secretary said Friday in an email to CBC News.

    The meeting followed this Oct. 10 tweet by Peterson, calling for the Human Rights Commission to be abolished.

    Peterson, who has more than one million followers on Twitter, was reacting to the Ontario Human Rights Commission joining the legal challenge against the Ford government’s changes to the sex-ed curriculum.

    He put out the tweet in response to an interview that Renu Mandhane, chief commissioner of the province’s human rights watchdog, did on CBC Radio’s Metro Morning.

    Peterson has gained international notoriety for his critique of what he calls “politically correct” limits to free speech. The Ford government ordered Ontario’s universities and colleges last summer to put in place policies by the end of 2018 guaranteeing free speech, or they would face funding cuts.

    Peterson has previously spoken out against the work of the Ontario Human Rights Commission and the federal Liberals’ move to prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity.

    “I know something about the way that totalitarian and authoritarian political states develop and I can’t help but think that I’m seeing a fair bit of that right now,” Peterson said in a lecture posted to his YouTube channel, which has 1.8 million subscribers.

    Ford’s calendar for October and November shows no one-on-one meetings with any other Ontario university professors. Peterson and his publicity firm did not respond to a request for an interview or to emailed questions about the meeting.

    The appointment schedule also unveils another piece in the puzzle about Ford’s request for a customized van, a controversy that erupted in December following the appointment of Ford’s friend Ron Taverner, a Toronto police superintendent, to be the next OPP commissioner.

    OPP deputy commissioner Brad Blair alleges that Ford’s chief of staff Dean French told a provincial police officer to obtain a “camper-van type vehicle” for the premier, have it modified by a specific company, and keep the costs off the books.

    The calendar shows the premier travelled to Mississauga on Nov. 5 for an appointment entitled “OPP Car Meeting” at a business called A1 Mobility, which adapts vehicles for accessibility.

    “The premier went to discuss options for a used OPP vehicle,” said press secretary Ivana Yelich in an email. “It’s not uncommon or inappropriate for a premier to ask for special accommodations for his/her vehicle.”

    The allegation that Ford’s chief of staff asked for the cost of the vehicle to be kept off the books is “categorically false,” said Yelich.

    The calendar also shows that Ford had lunch with Taverner on Oct. 9, several weeks before he was named to lead the OPP. The province’s integrity commissioner is investigating how Taverner got the job, as he did not meet the original qualifications.

    Blair, who made the allegations about the camper van, wants a court to force Ontario’s ombudsman to investigate Taverner’s appointment as well. Blair’s lawyer Julian Falconer could not be reached for comment.

    Ford’s calendar shows a flurry of activity around GM Canada’s Nov. 26 announcement that it intends to cease production at its Oshawa plant by the end of this year.

    In addition to phone calls with the CEO of General Motors, Mary Barra, the day before and day of the announcement, Ford got on the phone with the presidents and CEOs of Ford, Honda and Toyota the following day.

    Cannabis legalization was another issue that Ford was focused on in October and November. He had a meeting entitled “Illegal Dispensaries” on the afternoon of Oct. 17, the day that recreational cannabis became legal in Canada.

    It included representatives for the attorney general, the finance minister, the community safety minister and the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario.

    On Oct. 26, with delivery delays plaguing the province’s online cannabis retailer, Ford spoke on a call with Finance Minister Vic Fedeli, the CEO of the Ontario Cannabis Store, and the CEO of Domain Logistics. It is the company managing the province’s secret cannabis warehouse, although neither the government, the cannabis agency, nor the company has publicly confirmed that.

    Then in late November, before revealing the province’s plans to allow only 25 cannabis retail outlets in the first phase of storefronts, Ford was given two briefings on cannabis. One was labelled “high priority” and another labelled “restricted attendance.”

    Asked for more details, Ford’s press secretary said the briefings were about “the general direction of the government’s cannabis policy.”

    Other entries in Ford’s calendar show the following meetings:

    Neil Bruce, CEO of SNC Lavalin and William Pristanski, registered lobbyist for the company (Oct. 29).
    Hazel McCallion, former mayor of Mississauga (Nov. 16).
    Patrick Lilly, CEO, Ring of Fire General Partner (Nov. 22).
    Toronto Coun. Michael Thompson and Transportation Minister Jeff Yurek (Nov. 28).
    Ford’s press secretary was asked to describe the topics of these meetings, but did not respond. ?

  5. “No, Pelosi is utterly boxed in. Either she caves on funding and appears weak to her caucus, or she blocks funding and gets zero concessions, appearing weak to her caucus. Either way, Trump still gets the wall. There is no direction in which Trump does not win.”
    Bill Mitchell – January 26, 2019 – Twitter

    “YourVoice™ America (1/25) ‘Trump State of Emergency!'”
    YourVoice America – Streamed live on January 25, 2019

    • I wonder where Chinese telecoms got so much know-how so quickly? Could it be from stealing every ounce of tech Nortel possessed?

      If not, it wasn’t for lack of trying.

      All throughout Communist China are, what are known as, “one-copy provinces”. It is where officials have purchased a single copy of MS Office and then illegally duplicated for use throughout the region. This is a central reason why Microsoft now delivers digital products electronically and not in physical form.

      One Internet acquaintance mentioned a meeting with Chicom buyers regarding the use of industrial scale process management for coal-burning power generation stations. This is very important since the Mainland has some of our world’s largest (crappy, soft, brown) coal reserves.

      The officials calmly informed her that no purchases of software are made without having access to the application’s source code.

      NOTE: — For those who are unfamiliar with computer programming, Source Code is the set of machine, intermediate or high-level instructions that computers use to perform functions down at a PCB (Printed Circuit Board) level of buffers, registers, buses, and real time clocks.

      In its early days, Source Code was the one thing that Apple Computer jealously refused to license for (justifiable) fear that its superb, highly integrated software–hardware architecture would be pirated.

      Silicon Valley legend has it that had Jobs and Wozniak (I’ve met the Woz personally) had gone the route of Commodore and freely licensed their code to all qualified application programmers, Microsoft might still be a small company in Redmond, Washington today.

      These Red Chinese negotiators insisted that all of the software vendors, whose programs they used, had provided the original source code with their products.

      Being that this process control company’s sole and most valuable product was its intellectual property (in the form of Source Code), surrendering that to an end-user was tantamount to giving away the crown jewels. (Take that as a slight measure of Han arrogance.)

      This sales engineer then inquired (already knowing the answer full-well) whether they used the Microsoft Office suite. They confirmed this and she then asked them if they had that application’s Source Code in their possession.

      Needless to say (then why say it?), if deer in the headlights make some sort of sound, then that is what was heard in the conference room.

      As noted before, when it comes to actually inventing something, intellectual property theft is pure heroin (China white, anyone?). Despite it being so much easier and cheaper to merely copy the work of more skilled designers, doing so is the equivalent of welding training wheels to a child’s bicycle.

      The process of trial and error is essential to creating a healthy culture of creativity. While not rewarded equally, success and failure are key ingredients of meaningful innovation.

      Without a technical mindset that encourages risk—of which failure is an integral part—the learning mechanism is never enshrined such that lack of success is not fatal to overall achievement.

      In a piratical environment, expending the hours to truly understand product development represents a fatal delay in time-to-market. Competitors who bring their knocked-off, cut rate goods to the trading floor first reap the rewards of taking shortcuts.

      As Frodo Baggins observed, “Short cuts make delays.” (but inns make longer ones). In Communist China’s haste to dominate global markets, the grueling battle to overcome costs-of-scale and other efficiency metrics is bypassed but recruits are left without the active-duty experience that brings about meaningful technological change.

      It is the equivalent of using a car to win a footrace. Take away the unfair vehicular advantage and it’s usually apparent that the driver hasn’t trained anywhere near as hard compared to everyone else on the starting blocks.

      With an actual businessman at America’s helm, Red China is making the alarming discovery that, in a fair race on a level playing field, the starter’s pistol has live ammunition.

      The Chicoms have been shooting innovative blanks for a long time now and they haven’t got much to show the range judges when they drop by to score the targets.

    • What was once a string of OBOR pearls is, for Communist China, rapidly becoming a near-endless queue of socioeconomic dominoes. All being set atremble upon the shaky tabletop of this world’s largest dysfunctional economy. Not that Venezolanos have benefited much from this Forbidden City snake oil.

      Should Guaido default or, worse yet (for Beijing), unilaterally invalidate Venezuela’s debt obligations, the shock waves could help trigger financial collapse in Red China. With so many billion-dollar-balls in midair, eventually one will drop and ruin Uncle Mao’s traveling freak show.

      Communist China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, Pakistan, and Islam in general all were strategic geo-diplomacy balls left in the air by Clinton, Bush 2.0, and 0bama. Trump himself may be a little unsteady at times but nothing’s hit the floor just yet and Xi’s new chainsaw funambulism doesn’t look very polished anyhow.

      All of the rogue régimes mentioned above have one thing in common, their economies all are swirling (some, not-so-gently) in history’s porcelain receptacle.

      As I continue to hammer dwell upon, how many of that motley crew is famed for meaningful innovation? Even so, the scientifically planned economy of Soviet Russia already was well-nigh addicted to intellectual property theft (from the Manhattan Project America) whilst Maoism was still wriggling about in one of Stalin’s scrotes.

      In closing, to the immense credit of Chappell’s broadcasting style, his serialized Chicom horror show is leavened with just enough humor to maintain perspective—or, at least, not put a fist through the monitor screen.

      • “The OBOR is however, much more than a connectivity cum economic program, it is also a comprehensive diplomatic initiative of a rising China. It is a an instrument of China’s diplomatic objective of ensuring that Asia and the World recognize China as a Great Power.”

        The diplomatic initiative can be seen at three levels: Intellectual, Political and Financial:
        (1) Intellectual: OBOR provides a framework for interaction with Academics, Think Tanks and Media, interested in economic development, infrastructure investment and trade & economic relations. This can facilitate movement in both directions; Chinese financed visits of foreign interlocutors to Chinese institutions and invitations for Chinese academics to these countries.
        (2) Political: OBOR provides a framework for interaction with the political establishment, including government ministers, of each country. As in the case with intellectuals and academics, the Chinese can facilitate the visits of foreign politicians to China for the purpose of discussing OBOR. It provides a very useful cover for Chinese experts to explain their national position on every issue, including the South China Sea, Japan and USA.
        (3) Financial: Every government minister is looking for funds to relieve budget constraints and finance pet projects. OBOR provides a framework for Chinese officials (Party, Govt) concerned with Chinese economy to interact with their counterparts in potential host countries, on their projects, programs and economic development objectives. At some stage it also involves the highest political authorities such as the Finance Minister and the Prime Minister/President of the country, allowing China’s views on any subject of their choosing to be heard respectfully.

  6. Pelosi Still Won’t Allow President Trump to Deliver SOTU Address From House Chamber – Even Though He Agreed to Reopen Govt

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) still won’t allow President Trump to deliver his State of the Union address from the House Chamber even though he reopened the government.

    President Trump was originally scheduled to give his SOTU speech from the House Chamber on Tuesday, but Pelosi refused to allow it citing security concerns due to the government shutdown.

  7. Bad Ideas Are Born in Bad Universities
    How our academies are enabling the instruments of tyranny.
    January 28, 2019
    Bruce Thornton

    n 1726 Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels gave us a brilliant satire of the folly of research divorced from common sense, practicality, and reality. When Gulliver visits the Grand Academy of Lagado, he finds “Projectors” busy with research projects like extracting sunbeams from cucumbers, building houses from the roof down, and converting excrement back to food.

    It’s hard not to think about Swift’s Projectors when you consider today’s loony ideas driving our social mores and even laws. And for that we can thank our universities, where most of these preposterous notions have their genesis. Multiple “gender” identities, “toxic masculinity,” “microaggressions,” and occult “racism” are just a few examples of speculative nonsense that have escaped the university asylum and now roil our politics and infect our laws.

    Like most social and political dysfunctions, this degradation of the university is a product of the Sixties. Professors always have had political and ideological preferences, but in the Sixties, universities institutionalized left-wing identity politics in various “studies” departments and programs. Yet faced with aggressive public complaints that women and minorities had been ignored in academic research and teaching, administrators did not address the alleged shortcomings in their curricula from within the protocols of university disciplines like English or history. For example, the topics of black or female history, literature, or social history should be studied with the same professional methodologies and protocols that govern those disciplines. Training in those professional standards could then become the foundation of research and teaching, subject to the professional oversight and judgment of similarly trained peers.

  8. Exterminating Whitey
    The end game of identity politics.
    January 28, 2019
    Mark Tapson

    In case anyone still needs confirmation, the rage and frenzy surrounding the supposed standoff caught on video last week between Covington Catholic High School students and an anti-Catholic, Native American activist demonstrates as nothing else has lately that the political left’s primary aim, the end game of identity politics, is the demonization of white Christian men.

    Covington student Nicholas Sandmann (pictured above) was the unfortunate epicenter of this tempest-in-a-teapot concocted entirely by the activist media, in which he and his classmates were falsely portrayed as racist bullies surrounding and taunting a frail Native American “elder,” Nathan Phillips. The truth – that it was the schoolboys who were verbally assaulted by Black Hebrew Israelite activists, and that Sandmann did and said nothing but stand his ground and smile in the face of Phillips’ provocation – swiftly came to light, but not before the entire country had squared off over the lie.

    It wasn’t that the news media got the story wrong, which would imply that they made a mistake, but that they didn’t care about getting it right. They didn’t care, because they saw an opportunity to dehumanize a white male wearing that triggering symbol of white supremacy, the “Make America Great Again” cap, and decided to run with a narrative that could be weaponized against President Trump and his “angry white male” supporters. “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it,” master strategist Saul Alinsky once taught, and Catholic white boy Sandmann became the left’s target of the moment.

  9. CBC News – Ontario community reels after terror arrest

    “….. how innocent he is ….. he didn’t even know what the RCMP is ”

    The lawyer for a man who was arrested and then released without being charged following an RCMP raid in Kingston, Ont., says his client has been through a “traumatizing experience.”

    • CBC – Andrew Scheer Being Petty & Irresponsible w/ Terror Probe Comments (Kingston)

      “…the terrorist attacks in this country have been against Muslims not by Muslims…”

      • “…the terrorist attacks in this country have been against Muslims not by Muslims…”

        Security with nets on aisle six. Nets on aisle six!

  10. Why has ‘Morning Joe’ secretly been taping from Florida (and pretending otherwise)?

    The word secretly in the headline should be in euphemistic quotes because anyone with reasonably good vision can tell that the show’s Washington, D.C. backdrops of late are green screens — and not very good ones at that. As Page Six notes, despite the feeble attempts to show hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski reporting from two different locations in the nation’s capital, the couple is actually sitting side by side. But the show is no longer broadcast out of New York as it has been traditionally. Instead the set MSNBC is using is located in a house the couple owns in Jupiter, Fla.

    So why the attempts at deception? A followup Page Six article explains that the Scarboroughs, who currently live in Connecticut, are availing themselves of a tax dodge, which requires them to spend a certain amount of their time at their Florida residence in order to derive any financial benefit.

    The whole thing is perfectly legal — just hypocritical. When the Trump tax plan was first announced in December 2017, Joe Scarborough told his “Morning Joe” audience:

  11. Fifteen UK churches warned to stop services in anonymous letters threatening bombings and mass stabbings

    Handwritten letters threatening petrol bomb attacks and mass stabbings have been sent to 15 churches in the UK in the past two months.

    “Stop all your services straight away”, said one letter sent to a church in Sheffield, South Yorkshire “if you don’t your church will be petrol bombed while in service. Continue behind closed doors and your congregation members will be stabbed one by one. Blood on your hands. You have been warned.”
    One of the hand written letters, bearing a West Midlands post mark, was sent to a Sheffield church, demanded that they stop their services and threatened to bomb the church
    One of the handwritten letters, bearing a West Midlands post mark, was sent to a Sheffield church, demanding that it stop services or risk being bombed

    Services are continuing and police officers have been deployed to the churches affected.

    A local faith school decided to withdraw pupils from services at the Sheffield church after they received the threatening letter.

    • Fifteen UK churches warned to stop services in anonymous letters threatening bombings and mass stabbings

      All by a single, mentally disturbed, underage, discriminated-against, unemployed “lone wolf”, I trust.

      It’s as if the entire UK is some wide-awake driver, sitting inertly behind the wheel of his car, as it’s being hooked up and towed off by a wrecker (foreign owned, no less!).

  12. Germany: Merkel cautions against nationalism as she accepts Fullbright Prize

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel received Fulbright Prize for International Understanding in a ceremony held in the Axica Convention Centre in Berlin on Monday.

    In her speech, Merkel warned against the development of nationalist thinking, and that “international law and human rights are in dispute, and we have to oppose it.”

    “We can consider ourselves lucky that we are able to live free and in peace in our countries, but this should not been taken for granted, rather we should continue to work for it,” she added.

    This is the first time the Fulbright Association held the ceremony outside the US

    • “we are lucky that we are able to live free and in peace in our countries”apart from murder, rape,bombings ,government repression,primitive sexual practises ,extreme censorship and population replacement,yes we are doing fine.

    • Germany: Merkel cautions against nationalism as she accepts Fullbright Prize

      Germany: Merkel cautions against nationalism as she accepts Half-bright Prize

      There, fixed that.

    • Pay attention to this one, the woman is saying that Cuba and Russia will send “Mercs” to Venezuela to prop up Maduro. If this happens we either back down (bad move in international and internal politics) or send in people which will run a risk of starting a war between either the US and Cuba (real short war) or a limited war against Russia (possibly a long war).

      Yucki what is you and your Ruski’s thoughts on this?

  13. Ayatollah Dezhkham: We’ll Shout “Death to America” until We Turn the White House into Islamic Center

    Ayatollah Lotfollah Dezhkham, Khamenei’s representative in the Fars Province of Iran, delivered a Friday sermon in the city of Shiraz on January 25, 2019.
    Ayatollah Dezhkham said that the Iranian people are fighting and awaiting the day when the banner of Islam will fly all over the planet and the Mahdi establishes his global rule.

    He said that the economic sanctions are evidence that the U.S. and President Trump are terrified of Iran, and added: “Until we turn the White House into a Hussainiya [Shiite Islamic center], we will all continue to shout: ‘Death to America!'” The crowd subsequently chanted: “Death to America!”

  14. Boko Haram kills 4 in attack near Molai in Borno state (thedefensepost, jan 28, 2019)

    “Four farmers have been killed in a suspected Boko Haram attack in northeastern Nigeria, civilian militia and residents said Monday, January 28.

    The attack, near Molai village some five km (three miles) from the Borno state capital Maiduguri, was blamed on fighters loyal to factional leader Abubakar Shekau.

    “The four victims had their throats slit,” Ibrahim Liman of the Civilian Joint Task Force assisting the military with security told AFP.

    One of the militants used the mobile phone of one of the farmers to say they had killed four and abducted two others, local resident Usman Gana said.

    “They informed us we should come and collect their bodies,” he said.

    The attacks underline the persistent threat to civilians in northeastern Nigeria, where more than 27,000 people have been killed since Boko Haram’s Islamist insurgency began in 2009…”

  15. At least 4 Burkina Faso soldiers killed in attack on military base in Nassoumbou (thedefensepost, jan 28, 2019)

    “At least four Burkina Faso soldiers were killed early on Monday, January 28 when gunmen raided a military base in the northeast, the armed forces said, a day after 10 people died in a separate attack in the same region.

    The pre-dawn attack saw heavily-armed gunmen ambush a base in Nassoumbou in Soum province in the Sahel region which flanks the Malian border.

    At around 5 a.m. “the detachment of the Nassoumbou GFSN and the Gendarmerie Territorial Brigade of the said locality were the targets of a terrorist attack,” the General Staff of the Armed Forces said in a release.

    The GFSN is a military force which is engaged in anti-terror operations in Burkina Faso’s restive north.

    “The military opposed with fierce resistance and many attackers were neutralized. Unfortunately, we recorded four (04) soldiers who died and five (05) wounded,” the release said, adding that air and ground operations were ongoing in the area.

    One security source told AFP that rockets were used in the attack.

    “Heavily-armed and unidentified individuals attacked the GFSN military base in Nassoumbou at around 4 a.m. Four members of the defense and security forces were killed and four others were injured,” a security source told AFP.

    “The attackers … arrived on motorbikes and also fired rockets at the base” which caught fire, a second security source told AFP, saying they fled towards the Malian border, which lies just 30 km (18 miles) away.

    LeFaso .net reported an unnamed source as saying the attack was carried out by hundreds of militants who came from Mali on motorcycles…”

  16. HRW Denounces Torture by Militants in Northwest Syria (tasnimnews, Jan 28, 2019)

    “Human Rights Watch on Monday accused members of the al-Qaeda-linked Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) of using torture against activists opposing their rule.

    The New York-based rights group said it documented 11 cases in which HTS “detained Idlib residents, apparently because of their peaceful work documenting abuses or protesting the group’s rule”.

    “Six of those detained were apparently tortured,” including a 16-year-old boy, it said in a statement, AFP reported.

    “One man described being hung from a pole upside down for hours during interrogation,” it said.

    Another said he was locked up in something resembling a coffin for three hours, while a third said he was pushed through a tire and beaten incessantly.

    “The maximum you can do is move your shoulders a bit. And scream for help. But on several occasions, they stuffed things in my mouth so I can’t scream,” the detainee told HRW.

    “I used to lose my consciousness a lot.”

    Seven of those interviewed by HRW said they were media activists or journalists who had participated in or covered protests against HTS, or were working with foreign media.

    The rights group called for the immediate release of all unlawfully held prisoners, including four still being held or missing among the 11 cases documented.

    “There is no legitimate excuse for rounding up opponents and arbitrarily detaining and torturing them,” said HRW’s Lama Fakih.”

  17. Blast hits UAE-guarded port in Yemen as prisoner swap stalls (mee, Jan 28, 2019)

    “A blast in the port town of al-Mokha, guarded by the United Arab Emirates and the internationally-recognised government of Yemen, killed at least six people and injured more, local officials told Reuters, as the UN envoy to Yemen said a planned prisoner swap between the government and Houthi rebels has been pushed back to an unspecified date.

    Local officials told Reuters the blast on Monday was thought to have been caused by a motorbike bomb and may have been carried out by al-Qaeda or the Islamic State (IS) group, though no one has taken responsibility for the attack yet…”

  18. EU sets up deal to sidestep US sanctions against Iran (memo, Jan 28, 2019)

    “French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire has revealed that his country along with Germany and Britain are to announced a new European-backed system to bypass US sanctions imposed on Iran, German news agency DPA reported yesterday.

    DPA reported Le Maire saying: “The deal is to be announced within the coming few days. We will continue, based on this independent financial tool, trading with Iran even if the US does not want this.”

    Iranian news agency IRNA had reported an EU spokesperson as saying that a new European-Iranian financial tool “is to be activated soon”.

    The spokesperson said that the EU parties, France, Germany and Britain, “are committed to maintain financial cooperation with Iran,” noting that the new tool was in its last phases.

    In the wake of the US President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the nuclear deal with Iran and imposition of sanctions on the Islamic Republic last May, Le Maire said: “With Germany, we are determined to work on an independent European or Franco-German financing tool which would allow us to avoid being the collateral victims of US extra-territorial sanctions.”

    He also said: “I want Europe to be a sovereign continent not a vassal, and that means having totally independent financing instruments that do not today exist.”

    In response to the reports, Trump administration officials have threatened strong economic penalties if the EU makes it easier to do business with Iran, the Associated Press reported.

    “The choice is whether to do business with Iran or the United States,” Senator Tom Cotton told the AP. “I hope our European allies choose wisely.””

  19. Armed men snatch prisoner outside French courthouse (gulfnews, Jan 28, 2019)

    “Tarascon, France: Two armed men attacked a van carrying a jailed prisoner on his way to a French court Monday, firing shots at the vehicle and striking a guard before making their getaway in the southern town of Tarascon, officials said.

    The spectacular escape comes in the wake of last year’s Hollywood-style helicopter jailbreak by Redoine Faid, a notorious gangster, which led to calls for prison services to beef up security and intelligence gathering.

    Monday’s raid took place at around 8.30 am, as dawn was breaking, just outside the courthouse where 27-year-old Lotfi Boussouak was due to be brought before a judge. He had just been transferred from jail.

    The prisoner, who had been detained since September 2017, faced charges of armed robbery, said prison officials.

    Two “heavily armed” gunmen, who had been laying in wait, “fired on the vehicle when it tried to get away with the prisoner”, local prosecutor Patrick Desjardins told reporters. Desjardins had earlier suggested that three gunmen had been involved in the snatch.

    Several bullet holes were found on the van, including in the front windscreen, and at least 11 cartridge cases were recovered from the scene, including some from an automatic rifle, he added.

    The three guards escorting him from a jail in Beziers 150 kilometres (90 miles) away, two men and a woman, were “very shaken” by the incident, but none of them was wounded by the shots, the prosecutor said.

    “The first officer to exit the vehicle (…) to ring the (courthouse) intercom was struck with a rifle butt,” Desjardins said. Another guard was hit by flying glass.

    The gang and the prisoner got away on foot, the prosecutor added.

    Desjardins said Boussouak had 14 previous convictions, but he had not been identified as needing special supervision, even though he was linked “to the higher spectrum of crime”.

    But Karim Terki, a prison guard union representative, said he had already attempted to break out of jail.

    The authorities “are really naive; he played nice for several months in order to try to escape again,” Terki added.

    The last dramatic jailbreak in France took place in late December when a prisoner at the Fresnes prison south of Paris managed to escape from an exercise yard by climbing over a wall with a rope made of bedsheets.

    Guards in the watchtowers fired three shots but the prisoner got away…”

  20. 16th Century Cannons Missing from Agadir Kasbah (moroccoworldnews, jan 28, 2019)

    “A row of historical cannons, each weighing about 1.5 tons, disappeared from the Agadir Oufella Kasbah, a visitor to the kasbah found on Thursday, according to Moroccan news outlet Erem News.

    The 40 copper cannons are believed to have been stolen. The price of copper has risen dramatically in the last 20 years globally. The Moroccan jewelry industry frequently mixes copper with gold, according to the news outlet, increasing its value.

    Given the World Bank forecast for copper price in 2019 to $6,540 per ton, the value of the stolen cannons solely in copper material is over $300,000.

    Sultan Mohammed al-Sheikh al-Saadi, the first sultan of the Saadi dynasty, built the Agadir Oufella Kasbah in 1540. He built the kasbah 236 meters tall to protect against Portuguese attacks. The Agadir earthquake of 1960 partially destroyed the kasbah.

    Morocco has had several cases of antiquities and art theft in the past few years. In 2017, police found a stolen 17th-century masterpiece by Italian painter Giovanni Francesco Barbieri in Casablanca. The painting was worth €6 million, according to Italian newspaper the Local.

    In 2013, precious antiques dating as far back as the 9th century went missing from Al-Quaraouiyine Mosque in Fez. Four years before, unidentified persons stole valuable relics from the Abu Al-Mahasin shrine in Fez.

    Agadir is a popular tourist destination in Morocco. Agadir welcomed 1 million tourists in 2018, up 13 percent from the previous year.”

  21. Morocco Refuses to Receive Moroccan Criminal from Belgium (moroccoworldnews, jan 28, 2019)

    “Morocco rejected Belgium’s request to receive Mustapha Bali, a Moroccan national with a criminal record in Belgium.

    Bali, according to RTL Info, served a 17-year prison sentence for drug-related crimes. The news outlet reported that he was also sentenced to three years for rape, a sentence he has not yet served.

    Belgium has stripped Bali of his residence permit making him an illegal immigrant in Belgium.

    Belgian Open Flemish Liberals and Democrats politician said that Morocco refused to give Bali the necessary travel documents to return to Morocco, according to

    Belgian outlet Het Laatste Nieuws reported that Bali was “radicalized.”

    Bali’s sister also has a criminal record for killing her ex-spouse. She was sentenced to 27 years in prison in Belgium.

    In October 2018, Belgian news outlets reported that the country wanted to extradite a Moroccan jihadist known as “the most dangerous woman in Belgium” to Morocco.

    Malika El Aroud is the widow of a Taliban jihadist, Abdessatar Dahmane. Dahmane had posed as a television journalist in Belgium to assassinate the Afghan political and military leader Ahmad Shah Massoud.

    Also in October, an appeals court in Belgium stripped Moroccan imam Fouad Belkacem of his Belgian citizenship.

    Belgium imprisoned Belkacem in 2013 after determining that his Sharia4Belgium group had sent dozens of individuals to fight in Syria.”

  22. ‘Mohammed’ Is Oslo’s Most Common Male Baby Name Again (moroccoworldnews, Jan 28, 2019)

    “The Norwegian Statistical Office has announced that “Mohammed” and its various spellings wass the most common baby name in 2018 among males in the Norwegian capital, Oslo.

    In an article published on January 24, the office said that while Lucas is the most popular male name nationally, Mohammed dominates in Oslo.

    A Norwegian statistics expert, Joergen Ouren, said that in Oslo “‘different’ names are more popular than elsewhere in the country” because of Oslo’s immigrant communities.

    He pointed out that the name Mohammed was the most popular in Oslo 10 years ago. In 2018, Mohammed was followed by Lucas, Philip, Oscar, and Oliver in popularity in Oslo.

    According to Pakistani outlet the Nation, Mohammed does not come in the top 10 names in other Norwegian cities.

    According to Sputnik, Oslo has the largest immigrant population in Norway, with many Norwegians born to immigrant parents. Of its total population of 624,000, 190,000 are immigrants or people born to immigrant parents.

    “The proportion of Muslims living in the Norwegian capital is 8.7 percent,” said the news agency. It related that people from Morocco, Pakistan, and Somalia form the largest international Muslim communities.

    Mohammed was also the most popular name in the Swedish city of Malmo in 2017, and was ranked 10th most common in England and Wales during the same year.”

  23. Woman attending ailing son ‘harassed, raped’ at Lahore hospital (tribune, Jan 28, 2019)

    “A woman, who visited Lahore Mayo Hospital for the treatment of her ailing son, was allegedly raped by a ward attendant.

    The victim A*, in her statement to Gowalmandi police on Monday, said that her son was ill so she admitted him to the paediatric ward of the hospital.

    A relative, Usman, came to see them inquire about her son’s health, she said. The woman added that she took the guest to the canteen for tea. “We sat on a bench and started drinking tea. After a few minutes, a man in plain clothes came and started intimidating us.”

    She said that he, with the help of a tea-seller, called a security guard. “They also called a person named Shahid Butt and verbally abused us for sitting and drinking tea in a prohibited area. They forced me to sit there on the bench, promising to let me go after a written apology,” she said. They also harassed and intimidated her, she added.

    The victim said they took Usman with them and let him go after extracting some money.

    “Butt escorted me to the ward and on the way, he misbehaved with me,” she said. Butt told her to visit his office the next day in the morning to sign the apology.

    The next day in the morning, the tea-seller came to summon her and took her to an office where Butt was present. She alleged that he locked the room and raped her.

    “He let me go after warning me not to reveal the ordeal to anyone. He also made her promise to visit him whenever he asked.”

    Gowalamnadi police registered an FIR under Section 376 of Pakistan Penal Code. They have also arrested the suspects, including prime suspect Shahid Shehzad Butt.

    Meanwhile, Mayo Hospital administration has suspended Butt for the misconduct.”

  24. WATCH: K-P minister converts Chinese national to Islam (tribune, Jan 28, 2019)

    “Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) Minister for Mines and Minerals Amjad Ali on Monday welcomed a Chinese national to the path of Islam as a video of him reciting the kalima went viral.

    The video which was released by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) media cell in the province shows Ali first reciting the kalima and the Chinese national following the suit.

    “Congratulations, you are a Muslim. Your name is Abdullah,” the provincial minister then tells the Chinese national.

    When asked, Ali stated that he was visiting Guangzhou in China when he met Abdullah at the tomb of Sa’ad bin Abi Waqas, one of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

    “He captured a few pictures with us and later we started talking,” Ali said, adding that the pair began talking and he explained the religion to him.

    “He [Chinese national] was impressed and immediately asked us to convert him to Islam,” the minister added.

    Ali said Abdullah then travelled to Pakistan where he was taught the teachings of Islam.”

  25. Security heightened for Aasia case hearing (tribune, Jan 29, 2019)

    “The Islamabad administration has sought deployment of the paramilitary Rangers in the federal capital on Tuesday (today), as the Supreme Court conducts the hearing of a review petition over acquittal of Aasia Bibi on blasphemy charges.

    The deputy commissioner of Islamabad in a letter to the authorities concerned has said that Punjab Rangers should be deployed as part of the efforts to heighten security in Judges Colony, Ministers Enclave and Diplomatic Enclave.

    Supreme Court will begin the review of its acquittal of a Christian woman, who spent eight years on death row, following her conviction in a blasphemy case. She was acquitted of the charge, when the Supreme Court accepted her appeal late last year.

    A three-judge panel, including new Supreme Court Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, is due to hear the review petition.

    Bibi’s lawyer, Saiful Malook, who fled to Europe after her acquittal, told Reuters he expected the case to be dismissed. Malook returned to Pakistan this week to represent Bibi in the court.”

  26. Merkel warns of rising nationalism, populism (aa, Jan 28, 2019)

    “German chancellor has warned of the dangers of rising nationalism and populism and called for stronger efforts to defend the principles of human rights all over the world.

    “In many countries, including Germany, we are witnessing growing populism and exclusionary nationalism, “ Angela Merkel said on Monday, during an award ceremony in Berlin.

    “Basic principles of international law or human rights are called into question. We must stand up against this,” she stressed.

    The German Chancellor made the remarks before receiving the Fulbright Prize for International Understanding in a ceremony in Berlin.

    The Fulbright Association’s Prize Committee Chair Mary Ellen Schmider said Angela Merkel was awarded with the prize for her “remarkable, compassionate leadership” and her strong commitment to mutual understanding, international cooperation and peace.

    Previous prize laureates include Nelson Mandela, Jimmy Carter, Desmond Tutu, Bill Clinton, Doctors without Borders, and Bill and Melinda Gates.”

  27. Germany’s thousands of ‘missing’ refugee minors (DW, Jan 28, 2019)

    “Authorities lose track of thousands of unaccompanied child refugees each year. Often they are safe, but experts say alarmingly little is known about their situations, and the government must do more to protect them.

    The increased influx of refugees to Europe in recent years has also brought tens of thousands of refugee minors to Germany, as well as other countries. Many of them vanished from the authorities’ radar after arrival, either immediately or at some later date. At the start of 2017, Germany’s Federal Criminal Investigation Office (BKA) recorded more than 8,400 missing refugee minors. By the start of 2019, that number had fallen to around 3,200.

    This decrease is not, however, a signal that all is now well, as Tobias Klaus from the Federal Association for Unaccompanied Refugee Minors explains. “The numbers themselves have, of course, decreased considerably,” he says. “But that’s connected to the fact that there have also been considerably fewer underage refugees arriving in the country.”

    Young migrants more likely to disappear

    The minor refugees’ association has conducted an as-yet-unpublished survey that actually indicates a slight trend in the opposite direction. The nonprofit association questioned more than 720 specialists working in child and youth welfare on subjects including the disappearance of unaccompanied refugee minors. The participants were slightly more likely than in the previous year to say that young migrants sometimes, or very often, disappeared.

    “Their replies suggest that most young people disappear at the beginning of their stay in Germany, i.e. while they have been provisionally taken into care,” said Klaus. “In 2017, 32.2 percent of those surveyed said that this sometimes or very often happens. In 2018, it was 35 percent.”

    There was an even clearer increase compared to 2017 further down the line. For example, 20.1 percent of the experts surveyed in the current study said that young refugees sometimes or very often disappear while in the “Help for Young Adults” program. (Unaccompanied refugees can still receive support from youth welfare services after their 18th birthday.) In the previous year’s survey, only 14.1 per cent said this.

    Lost in the system

    As in previous years, the main reason the interviewees gave was that children, usually aged between 14 and 17, leave to make their own way to relatives or other people known to them. This may mean they travel on to other European countries, or other parts of Germany. If it’s the latter, the unaccompanied refugees don’t usually vanish for long, and they’re taken off the list of missing persons.

    They are usually also separated from the person they traveled to be with. For example, “If a young person is picked up in Munich, and their cousin lives in Hamburg, the Munich Youth Welfare Office can ask Hamburg to assume responsibility. But the Youth Welfare Office there doesn’t have to comply with this request,” Klaus explains.

    According to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF), this procedure is intended to ensure “accommodation, care, support and assistance in the best interests of the child.” According to the minor refugees’ association, however, the system pays too little attention to the interests and needs of the unaccompanied minors, and focuses instead on quotas — i.e. whether a federal state or a municipality has already accepted a comparatively large or small number of young refugees.

    Fear of deportation

    In the nonprofit’s survey, the second presumed reason for young people disappearing is the perceived or real likelihood that they may be forced to leave Germany. “Many of them fear deportation, or feel they have no prospects,” says Klaus.

    According to BKA figures, the largest group of missing persons are Afghans, who in Germany very often find themselves threatened with deportation. People from Morocco and Algeria also have a very low chance of being allowed to stay, and a disproportionate number of refugee minors from these countries go missing compared to those from the main countries of origin.

    “If young people can’t see any path for themselves within the system, and all they get to hear is ‘You’re not wanted here, no matter what you do,’ they’re particularly at risk — not only of suddenly disappearing, but of actually slipping into illegality and into parallel systems,” Klaus explains.

    We know ‘alarmingly little’ about children in danger

    Although the BKA’s success rate in solving cases has remained above 80 percent in recent years — in other words, most missing persons do reappear at some point — there are those youths who fall off the authorities’ radar. A study by the BAMF and the German national contact point for the European Migration Network (EMN) also warns that unaccompanied minors may become victims of criminal activity. The study recommended that to better protect them from dangers including homelessness, trafficking, and recruitment into criminal activity or prostitution, the organization and exchange of data must be improved.

    Tobias Klaus of the minor refugees’ association can only agree. “That should actually cause us most concern: The fact that we know alarmingly little about the dangerous situations these young people may find themselves in. The government must make more funds available. We need more social workers and offers of support.””

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