Reader’s Links for June 3, 2020

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 must use it while we can.

About Eeyore

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

134 Replies to “Reader’s Links for June 3, 2020”

  1. GOP lawmakers grill Whitmer on Michigan nursing home deaths at U.S. House hearing

    Republican lawmakers pushed back against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s criticism of the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic when she testified Tuesday to a U.S. House subcommittee about Michigan’s response.

    And they challenged Whitmer about her own response to COVID-19 in Michigan nursing homes, where federal data released Monday shows that, as of May 24, Michigan had 1,654 nursing home deaths — the fifth-highest per capita in the nation and more than 200 higher than the number reported by state officials.

    Whitmer, a Democrat, testified remotely from Lansing to a U.S. House subcommittee on energy and commerce oversight and investigation, which is taking testimony on state responses to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    The hearing, which also featured testimony from Colorado Gov. Jared Polis, a Democrat, and Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, a Republican, lasted three hours. Republican questions to Whitmer were much more pointed than the ones they directed at Polis.

    https://www.gopusa.com/?p=89851?omhide=true

  2. Neighbors Organizing, Arming Themselves to Stand Guard, Keep Their Neighborhoods Safe

    The two men stepped from the shadows as the car turned off an upscale shopping street into a residential area located on the far edge of the rioting that swept through Minneapolis. It was after midnight. A pair of metal dividers blocked the road, and the men stepped to either side of the car as it stopped. Both carried assault rifles.

    “Do you live here?” one of the men asked, politely, but forcefully. His hands rested casually on the rifle slung across his chest, and a pistol was strapped to his belt.

    “We have lots of old people here,” he continued, satisfied that the driver, an AP reporter, posed no danger. “We don’t want anyone to get hurt.”

    A week of civil unrest has led some Minneapolis residents near the epicenter of the violence to take steps to protect their homes and neighborhoods. They’ve stocked up on fire extinguishers and buckets, and formed scores of loose neighborhood watch groups — aided by a cluster of apps and social media — to share what they view as suspicious activity.

    Preparing for nightfall in Minneapolis has meant a new routine for many: stashing garbage cans to keep them from being tossed or set on fire, turning on lights and opening blinds. In some neighborhoods near large demonstrations, witnesses say it also includes residents armed with baseball bats, crowbars and the occasional pistol barricading their streets to keep violent protesters away.

    https://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/neighbors-organizing-arming-themselves-to-stand-guard-keep-their-neighborhoods-safe/?utm_source=wideopen&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=wos_daily&utm_content=%5B%5Brssitem_title%5D%5D

    Gun Stores Jammed Across the Country After Days of Riots, Looting

    Americans have been buying firearms at a record pace since the beginning of the coronavirus national emergency. Approximately five million were sold through first five months of 2020 alone.

    Now that Americans have watched days of riots and looting across the country with little or no pushback from law enforcement in many areas, they’re headed back to gun stores to tool up. And while retailers estimate the 40% of the guns sold so far — pre-rioting — were to first-time buyers, it seems a safe bet that a lot more people who have never owned a firearm before will be lining up, waiting hours sometimes, to make their first firearm purchase.

    Here are just a few scenes outside gun stores around the country:

    https://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/gun-stores-jammed-across-the-country-after-days-of-riots-looting/?utm_source=wideopen&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=wos_daily&utm_content=%5B%5Brssitem_title%5D%5D

  3. Antifa Terrorists Mess with Wrong California Town – Get the “Ever-Loving Snot” Beat Out of Them (VIDEO)

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    Antifa Terrorists Mess with Wrong California Town – Get the “Ever-Loving Snot” Beat Out of Them (VIDEO)
    By Jim Hoft
    Published June 2, 2020 at 8:44pm
    484 Comments
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    Antifa thugs messed with the wrong town.
    Several antifa thugs traveled to Yucaipa, California this week to try to stir up some trouble.
    The men in town chased the punks and beat the snot out of them.

    https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/antifa-terrorists-mess-wrong-california-town-get-ever-loving-snot-beat-video/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=the-gateway-pundit&utm_campaign=dailyam&utm_content=daily

    https://twitter.com/i/status/1267961287977373696

  4. (Richard: Remember what I said about probing attacks at the White House?)

    BREAKING: US Park Police Find Baseball Bats, Poles Hidden Along Street Near White House — Reports of Pipe Bombs

    US Park Police found “baseball bats & metal poles hidden along the street” near the White House on Tuesday evening.

    Smoke canisters and pepper balls were used to disperse the rioters and prevent them from using their secreted weapons.

    There are also reports tonight that US Park Police are investigating a threat of pipe bombs near the Korean Memorial in Washington DC.

    https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/breaking-us-park-police-find-baseball-bats-poles-hidden-along-street-near-white-house-reports-pipe-bombs/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=the-gateway-pundit&utm_campaign=dailyam&utm_content=daily

  5. MUST SEE EXCLUSIVE: Mysterious Stacks of Bricks Are Being Delivered to Numerous US Cities – More Evidence Riots Are Organized!
    By Joe Hoft
    Published June 2, 2020 at 8:03pm
    519 Comments
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    We reported previously that the groups behind the riots in the US include domestic terrorists, Black lives Matter, US Islamists and others linked to the Democrat Party.

    These protests are organized – bricks are being delivered uninhibited to riot sites.

    In cities around the US bricks are being delivered to riot locations and used to destroy property.

    https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/must-see-exclusive-mysterious-stacks-bricks-delivered-numerous-us-cities-evidence-riots-organized/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=the-gateway-pundit&utm_campaign=dailyam&utm_content=daily

  6. Rudy Giuliani: De Blasio Is Calling Individual Police Chiefs and Telling Them Not to Enforce the Law or Make Arrests (VIDEO)

    Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani joined Sean Hannity on Tuesday night to discuss the crisis in New York City.

    For days now far left protesters are destroying the city, looting businesses and attacking NY police.

    Rudy says de Blasio is calling the individual police chiefs and telling them NOT to enforce the law or make arrests.

    https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/rudy-giuliani-de-blasio-calling-individual-police-chiefs-telling-not-enforce-law-make-arrests-video/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=the-gateway-pundit&utm_campaign=dailyam&utm_content=daily

  7. Trains Suspended and Numerous Residents Quarantined in Mudanjiang City

    The Heilongjiang Health Committee reported that 5 new cases of asymptomatic CCP virus infections were identified in Mudanjiang City on May 26. The subsequent screening tests found that all five people got infected through coming into contact with other asymptomatic virus carriers.
    All trains at Mudanjiang Station were suspended on the following day. Passengers who had purchased tickets had to cancel and get a refund.

    Woman: When were the trains suspended and when are you going to resume?
    Staff: I don’t know. We will wait for further instructions.
    Woman: No trains today, right?

    Which community is this?
    Greenland Victory.
    So a bus just took away some residents from the Greenland Victory community.
    Actually, here comes another bus. Two buses loaded with people, taken to be quarantined.

    https://www.theepochtimes.com/trains-suspended-and-numerous-residents-quarantined-in-mudanjiang-city_3372783.html?__sta=vhg.hhksexIJ_fmb%7CTYH&__stm_medium=email&__stm_source=smartech

  8. (Richard: Until the insurrection started in the US I was sure that China was creating trouble on the China-India border to draw attention away from Hong Kong. Now that the open shots of the Second American Civil War have been fired China may feel free to attack India, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

    China Is Spoiling for a Fight
    Thanks to the Communist Party’s aggression, more potential international crises loom on the horizon.
    by John Jiang
    June 3, 2020, 12:11 AM

    Three more noteworthy developments occurred across the Pacific this past week. No fireworks yet, but it seems like China is setting up as many powder kegs as it can. America is of course busy dealing with its own home front, leaving Beijing room to maneuver with little scrutiny.

    The first of the powder kegs is Hong Kong, which effectively lost its independence on May 28 when the Chinese legislature declared that mainland security law trumped the city’s own. To add insult to injury, the territory’s government has banned the annual June 4 vigil for the victims of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre for the first time ever. Other than some verbal protests and an adjustment in trade status for the city by American officials, the international reaction has been subdued and there is the distinct feeling that Western governments, with their hands full, have stopped paying attention. Though perhaps the most depressing incident in this list, this one is the least likely to cause a conflagration at this point.

    The second keg was lit late last week at a gathering for top Chinese officials. Speaking on the topic of Taiwan, Li Zuocheng, a top PLA general, declared that the Communist Party would “reserve the option to take all necessary measures to stabilise and control the situation in the Taiwan Strait” and would “take all necessary steps to resolutely smash any separatist plots or actions.” The general was careful to depict Taiwanese “separatists” as fringe extremists repudiated by the Taiwanese public. In reality, of course, Taiwan’s ruling party supports independence from the mainland, and so the general’s words constituted merely the latest Chinese threat against the Taiwanese government.

    https://spectator.org/china-fight-india-hong-kong-taiwan/

  9. Soros-Backed St. Louis Circuit Attorney Releases All Rioters and Looters from Jail Without Charges Following Monday’s Mass Rioting

    St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner released ALL of the rioters and looters captured this week in the criminal Black Lives Matter – Antifa protests in St. Louis.

    This was after 4 police officers were shot and one retired police captain was killed in the street on Facebook live.

    Missouri state Attorney General Eric Schmitt was shocked by the move.

    https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/06/soros-backed-st-louis-circuit-attorney-releases-rioters-looters-jail-without-charges-following-mondays-mass-rioting/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=the-gateway-pundit&utm_campaign=dailypm&utm_content=daily

    • Related: “Socialists Urge Infiltration of Government Schools”
      By Alex Newman – August 27, 2018
      https://www.freedomproject.com/the-newman-report/796-socialists-urge-infiltration-of-government-schools

      13:57 – Thomas Sheridan – Lack of interior voice
      Imagination – Reading

      “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” – Albert Einstein

      “The doors of the world are opened to people who can read.”
      – Dr. Benjamin Carson

      “Dr. Benjamin Carson’s Amazing Speech at the National Prayer Breakfast with Obama Present”
      FreedomsLighthouse – February 7, 2013

    • Gov. Ron DeSantis Announces Florida National Guard Troops Headed To D.C.

      The governor said 500 members of the Florida National Guard were en route to Washington, D.C to assist during the police-brutality protests that have gripped the nation’s capital.

    • Obama’s full speech on the George Floyd protests in the United States

      ( 15 min 28 )

      “There’s something different here”: Obama looked back at protests in the 1960s, saying the current demonstrations are far more representative of American society.

      ( vomit bucket needed )

        • Geeez Barack, I am beginning to believe a lot of the reports I read years ago about things that were done under your State Department.
          Training people to start a revolution
          The Civil Society
          The Ukraine
          The Fabian Society
          Antifa—a leaderless revolution to destabilize the Western world.
          Hydra……….

    • Then he went on to talk about Nasrin Sotoudeh, the 55 year old Iranian lawyer who defended 7 women IN IRAN who removed their head scarves. The seven women were sent to prison received different sentences. Nastiness Sotoudeh received a sentence of 38 years and 148 lashes. Many women have their wrists tied together , are hung by their wrists so the barbarian can whip the bottom of their feet. Then they are usually raped in that Islamic country. There would not be any riots, after all they are only women With “deficient “ minds.

  10. Lavrov: Russian Prisoners in Libya Main Obstacle to Bilateral Cooperation
    https://english.aawsat.com/home/article/2315911/lavrov-russian-prisoners-libya-main-obstacle-bilateral-cooperation

    “Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday that the presence of Russian prisoners in the Libyan capital of Tripoli was the main obstacle to cooperation between the countries.

    Lavrov made the comment after talks in Moscow with Deputy Prime Minister Ahmed Maiteeg of Libya’s Government of National Accord (GNA).

    The United Nations’ Libya mission said Tuesday the country’s warring parties had agreed to restart talks aimed at reaching a lasting ceasefire, after a three-month suspension.”

  11. Turkey backs Trump stance on Antifa, asks for same on YPG in Syria
    https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/turkey-trump-antifa-syria-ypg

    “Turkey asked the US on Wednesday to crack down on “Antifa” in Syria, following President Donald Trump’s decision to declare them a terror organisation in response to nationwide mass protests over the police killing of black American George Floyd.

    The Antifa (deriving from the German “antifaschistisch”, or anti-fascist) label refers to a range of autonomous anti-fascist organisations and activists who use similar iconography and tactics when physically confronting far-right groups.

    Though there is no formal Antifa organisation, as some right-wing commentators have alleged, the symbols and slogans associated with the movement have been used by groups linked to the pro-Kurdish People’s Protection Unit (YPG) in northern Syria, including by foreign volunteers.

    This prompted accusations of hypocrisy from Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, who said the US should designate the YPG – who Turkey consider an offshoot of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has fought a long-running guerilla war with the country – also a terrorist organisation.

    “The US must show the same sensitivity in Syria when Antifa draws its weapons on Turkish soldiers, or when they attack us after joining the PKK,” he said in an interview on 24 TV.

    “Is it only a terror group when they touch you? And nothing needed to be done when it is Turkey?”

    The YPG have long received support from the US, as part of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), to fight the Islamic State (IS) group, which has harmed relations with Turkey who consider the YPG a terrorist organisation.

    Trump’s intention to declare Antifa terrorists has drawn widespread criticism among the US public due to constitutional and political obstacles.

    Legally, the US president doesn’t have power to name domestic groups as terrorists. Many consider the move as a “bluster” to distract media from police violence and appease the president’s far-right base.

    However, this hasn’t stopped Turkish social media commentators from using it to seek to draw parallels with Kurdish armed groups in Syria and gain support from American conservatives…”

  12. CBC – Trudeau to join global COVID-19 vaccine fundraiser amid calls for fair access

    More than 100 potential vaccines are currently in development: Tam

    The prospect of tens of millions of COVID-19 vaccine doses rolling out as early as this fall is being tempered by warnings to ensure they shared fairly across the globe, especially in the poorest countries.

    The caution comes as Britain is set to host an international pledging conference Thursday that aims to raise almost $10 billion for GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance, the leading agency for distributing other vaccines to less-developed countries.

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will join leaders from 50 countries and major organizations, including the philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates.

    Canada has already announced its five-year, $600-million pledge to GAVI, which has immunized 760 million children and prevented 13 million deaths in the world’s poorest countries since 2000.

    British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will be leading the event, but Trudeau’s appearance comes as Canada vies for a seat on the UN Security Council.

    It also comes after his address Wednesday to a summit of the Organisation of African, Caribbean, and Pacific States, where he said Canada is committed to helping developing countries, hardest hit by the pandemic.

    That will include ensuring any new vaccine is distributed to poor countries, and avoiding past practice, notably the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, that saw the wealthiest buyers get it first — a message that Johnson, Gates and others are expected to emphasize on Thursday.

    “It’s also to send a clear message to the market that there will be a market for this in the developing world, and there will be an organization that can distribute this vaccine,” International Development Minister Karina Gould said in an interview Wednesday.

    “What’s different about this pandemic is we’re talking about the whole world getting vaccinated. It’s on a scale that we haven’t imagined before because when we think of previous vaccine campaigns, it’s usually targeted.”

    The British envoy to Canada said 30 million doses of a vaccine could become available in her country as early as Septemberbecause of the swift pace towards clinical trials by researchers at Oxford University in a joint government-funded venture with AstraZeneca, the British-Swedish pharmaceutical company.

    More than 100 vaccines in development

    High Commissioner Susan le Jeune d’Allegeershecque said in an interview that Britain wants to ensure that “it’s not the person with the biggest cheque in their hand that gets the first bite of this particular cherry.”

    Le Jeune d’Allegeershecque said all governments need to meet their domestic vaccine needs. “But at the same time, those of us who are members of the G7 and the G20 definitely have the wider global need in our minds at the same time. We’re not doing one at the expense of the other.”

    On Tuesday, CNN reported that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, predicted the United States would have 100 million doses of a viable vaccine by year’s end.

    Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief public health officer, said there are more than 100 vaccine candidates in development across the world.

    A race against the virus

    “Clinical trials are very important because you need to establish safety, the dosing and the effectiveness of the vaccine. So it is a bit of a rigorous process, at the same time as we want to accelerate the development,” she said.

    “Definitely, we’re part of the global effort. But we’re also, of course, looking at beyond the research and the clinical trials to look at the actual capacity for vaccine development and manufacturing, all the way to getting equipment ready for the time should we have a vaccine.”

    Dr. Gary Kobinger, a Laval University infectious disease expert who lead a team that developed the Ebola vaccine, said the 100-plus vaccine candidates need to be narrowed down to a few best options.

    “It’s a race against the virus; it’s not a race against one another,” he said in an interview. “No matter what country you look at, the international resources are limited, clinical sites are limited.”

    Trudeau is positioning Canada as a leader in the push for a global recovery plan just as the country is competing for one of two coveted, non-permanent seats on the UN Security Council later this month against Norway and Ireland.

    The UN confirmed Wednesday that the secret ballot of 193 ambassadors would begin as scheduled on June 17, but without a full meeting of the General Assembly because of physical distancing requirements to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

    Leading UN agencies, including the World Health Organization, and the leaders of African countries are also taking part in Thursday’s vaccine summit.

    In the past month, Trudeau has played leading roles in similar summits with the European Union and the UN as Canada campaigns for the security council on a platform of trying to help rebuild the post-pandemic world.

    “People don’t understand — there’s no economic recovery if the pandemic continues to rage in the developing world or other countries,” Stuart Hickox, the Canadian director of the One Campaign advocacy group, said in an interview.

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/trudeau-joins-global-vaccine-fundraiser-1.5597328

    • Maybe Canadians will see the Arabs rioting in Canada wanting justice for 75 year old Sara Anne Widholm, who was so badly beaten on October 8th, 2017, by 21 year old Habibullah Ahmadi, that she died 14 months later still in a coma. Police said it was an act of random violence. Still no trial. No riots.

  13. Official: 90% of Iraq’s customs revenue goes to corrupt people
    https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20200603-official-90-of-iraqs-customs-revenue-goes-to-corrupt-people/

    “Corruption on Iraq’s borders is robbing the government of its customs income, a member of the parliamentary financial committee has warned.

    According to Member of the Parliamentary Financial Committee Magda Al-Tamimi 90 per cent of Iraq’s customs revenue goes to corrupt people instead of reaching state coffers, Rudaw reported yesterday.

    In the interview, she referred to “forgery of 174,000 state properties”, noting that the teams from the Office of Financial Supervision and inspectors had been informed. State properties have been transferred into the names of individuals, she explained, with 300-400 property records now missing from the Iraqi Registration Department.

    “Mainly four parties get benefits from the borders of Iraq; the Central Bank, parties, merchants, terrorist financiers,” she said.

    After the defeat of Deash in 2017, corruption is now the main threat to Iraq’s stability.

    According to a report published by Chatham House, this situation alienates the population from its ruling elite and drives young people to protest to demand change.

    Though the new prime minister has intervened in some instances, security forces have continued to arrest and shoot young demonstrators.

    “We reached a level of injustice we could no longer take. For every action, there is a reaction,” explained one civil society activist.”

  14. Children pay price of Syrian civil war, report reveals
    https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20200603-children-pay-price-of-syrian-civil-war-report-reveals/

    “Millions of children have been displaced and more than 29,000 others killed since the Syrian civil war erupted in 2011, according to a joint report by the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) and Anadolu Agency.

    The United Nations observe the International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression on June 4 every year to remind the commitment to the rights of children. The annual observance has recalled that children pay the price of the civil war in Syria.

    A total of 6.7 million Syrians, including 2.5 million children, had to leave their country due to the civil war, according to the UN data.

    Since March 2011, at least 29,296 children have been killed in Syria by the parties to the conflict, while many others were injured or disabled, according to the joint report of SNHR and Anadolu Agency.

    The Syrian regime was behind the majority of the fatalities, killing 22,853 children, while Russian forces killed 2,005 children, according to the report.

    Meanwhile, 223 children were killed in the attacks carried out by the YPG, and 956 were killed by Daesh terrorists, the report revealed.

    Some 1,000 children were killed by the armed opposition and anti-regime groups, and 924 children were killed by the Global Coalition Against Daesh, it said.

    The report also documented the killing of 1,282 children by other unidentified parties.

    A total of 217 chemical attacks, carried out by the Assad regime since March 2011, left 205 children dead, according to the report.

    More than 170 children had been tortured to death by the regime, while warring factions continue to hold at least 4,816 children in prisons, it added.

    Syria has been ravaged by a civil war since early 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protesters.

    Hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and more than 10 million displaced, according to UN estimates.”

  15. Hyderabad: 20 year old Shaikh Mohammed murdered for smoking ganja and consuming alcohol during Ramzan
    Shaikh Mohammed went out with Mohammed Sajid Khan, Syed Siddique and Mohammed Azzar in order to resolve their previous disagreements.
    https://www.opindia.com/2020/06/hyderabad-shaikh-mohammed-murdered-smoking-ganja-consuming-alcohol-during-ramzan/
    A youngster was murdered by his three ‘friends’ allegedly for smoking ganja and consuming alcohol during Ramzan in Bahadurpura at Hyderabad. The corpse
    of Shaikh Mohammed was recovered from the bushes near Mir Alam Tank on Saturday night. The victim, reportedly 20 years old, was discovered with his
    throat slit.
    As per reports, on Saturday evening, Shaikh Mohammed went out with Mohammed Sajid Khan, Syed Siddique and Mohammed Azzar in order to resolve their
    previous disagreements. “Around 8 p.m.they took him and by 10.30 p.m. his grandmother Mumtaz Begum came to know about the death of her grandson. The
    accused slit his throat,” stated Bahadurpura inspector Durga Prasad.
    The police stated that the case was being investigated and they are on the lookout for the three suspects. The case was registered under section 302
    (murder) of the Indian Penal Code. As per reports, the victim’s father passed away when he was a child and was living with his grandmother ever since.
    The dead body was identified after receiving information from locals about the identity of the deceased. The corpse was identified by his grandmother,
    who happens to be a resident of Kalapathar. According to his grandmother, he was addicted to ganja and alcohol. he had a quarrel earlier with his
    ‘friends’ over smoking ganja and drinking alcohol during Ramzan.

  16. Libya’s government retakes Tripoli airport ahead of possible truce talks
    https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20200603-libyas-government-retakes-tripoli-airport-ahead-of-possible-truce-talks/

    “Libya’s internationally recognised government recaptured Tripoli’s main airport on Wednesday, all but driving an eastern commander’s forces from the capital ahead of what appeared to be moves towards talks on a truce, Reuters reports.

    Videos posted online showed pro-government fighters driving in pick-up trucks among shell-smashed passenger planes and posing for photographs beside airport buildings.

    It follows a month of gains for the Government of National Accord (GNA) as Turkish drone strikes helped it drive the eastern-based Libyan National Army (LNA) of Khalifa Haftar from much of its foothold in the northwest…”

  17. Houthis launch recruitment campaign in conjunction with disappearance of dozens of children
    https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20200604-houthis-launch-recruitment-campaign-in-conjunction-with-disappearance-of-dozens-of-children/

    “In light of the growing phenomenon of child abductions and the escalation of violations against children in Houthi-controlled areas, local sources in Sanaa informed Asharq Al-Awsat that the movement has this week launched a new recruitment campaign based on luring children and young men to join the militia ranks, under the pretext of protecting them from the coronavirus.

    The sources confirmed that the Houthi commanders in Sanaa and other governorates have initiated coordinated campaigns in neighbourhoods, communities and villages, to urge residents to hand their children over to recruitment camps as the best alleged method of protecting them from infection and avoiding sources of danger.

    A parent and resident of the capital told Asharq Al-Awsat that since the first days of Eid Al-Fitr, the militia supervisors in the neighbourhoods of Sho’oub, Shumaila and Al-Safia have intensified their movements in the area, in an effort to persuade the residents to let them take their children.

    The same source confirmed that: “After the recent recruiting campaigns, the Houthi militias did not invite children and youngsters to stay in their homes and protect themselves from the pandemic, but rather asked them to save themselves and quickly join the fighting fronts, which are safe and free from the coronavirus, away from crowded cities and areas, as the movement claims.”

    It is not known how many children and young men the Houthis have managed to recruit during its latest campaign. However, international sources and reports of the previous Yemeni government estimate that a third of Houthi fighters are children and adolescents.

    Parents in the Houthi-controlled capital communicated that many children and youngsters are being lured by Houthis without the knowledge or consent of their families, while they are in the streets, mosques or markets.

    Local sources in the governorates of Mahwit, Hajjah, Dhamar and Ibb earlier informed Asharq Al-Awsat that dozens of Yemeni children have recently disappeared, adding that the Houthi militias most likely lured those children to join the recruitment camps.

    Citizens in the governorates of Ibb and Dhamar reported a few months ago that dozens of children under the age of 18 had disappeared.

    Activists in the Hajjah and Mahwit governorates also spoke about similar incidents in their area.

    Human rights sources in Sanaa revealed to Asharq Al-Awsat that the phenomenon of child abduction is widespread in the Houthi-controlled areas, especially in the capital and the governorates of Ibb, Amran, Hajjah, Mahwit and Dhamar.

    The sources confirmed that the kidnappings have been taking place on a daily basis. Three to six children disappear daily, often between noon and sunset, leaving their homes and not returning.”

  18. Kuwait vows to slash migrant population
    https://gulfnews.com/world/mena/kuwait-vows-to-slash-migrant-population-1.1591224060069

    “Kuwait wants to slash the migrant proportion of its population from 70 to 30 per cent, state media said Wednesday, with the prime minister vowing to “resolve the demographic imbalance”.

    Oil-rich Kuwait has a large foreign population mostly made up of Middle Eastern and Asian workers.

    Out of 4.8 million inhabitants, some 3.3 million are foreign nationals, said Prime Minister Sabah Al Khaled Al Hamad Al Sabah.

    “The ideal demographic situation would be that Kuwaitis make up 70 per cent of the population and non-Kuwaitis 30 per cent,” he told a gathering of local newspaper editors.

    “So we face a big challenge in the future to rectify this demographic imbalance.”

    Like its neighbours, Kuwait’s state budgets have been slammed by tumbling oil prices sparked by the novel coronavirus pandemic, pushing it to seek ways to provide more jobs to its own citizens.

    State-owned Kuwait Airways said last week it would lay off 1,500 expatriate employees due to “significant difficulties” caused by the pandemic.”

  19. Doctor, father of three referred to criminal court in FGM case
    http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/370474/Egypt/Politics-/Doctor,-father-of-three-referred-to-criminal-court.aspx

    “Egypt’s prosecutor-general has referred a doctor and a father of three to criminal court for performing female genital mutilation (FGM) on the man’s three daughters.

    According to a statement by the prosecutor-general’s office, the divorced father of the three girls, all of whom are under the age of 18, agreed with a doctor to conduct the FGM procedure without first informing the girls or their mother.

    The statement said that the man deceived the three girls and his wife by claiming that the doctor would vaccinate them against coronavirus, but instead forcefully put them through the illegal FGM operation.

    The forensic authority confirmed that they had undergone the operation.

    The prosecutor-general’s office also took the statements of the girls’ mother and their aunt as witnesses.

    FGM has been criminalised in Egypt since 2008. A 2016 amendment mandates sentences of between five and seven years in prison for those involved in the procedure if it results in the death or disability of the victim.

    The first conviction for performing FGM in Egypt was in January 2015, seven years after the practice was first criminalised in 2008.

    According to the 2014 Egyptian Demographic Health Survey, 92.3 percent of ever-married women aged 15-49 have undergone FGM.

    Four-fifths of such operations are carried out by medical professionals, according to the survey.

    According to a health ministry in 2018, the rate of FGM among teenage girls aged 15 to 17 fell from 74 percent in 2008 to 61 percent in 2014.”

  20. ‘Let’s not play with fire’, Pakistan Army tells India
    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2234785/1-lets-not-play-fire-pakistan-army-tells-india/

    “Major General Babar Iftikhar, the director general of the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), has said that India is planning a false flag operation against Pakistan but warned that the results of any misadventure will be “beyond anyone’s control” and will be responded with full force.

    In an interview with Geo News on Wednesday, the army’s spokesperson outlined the reason for the Indian operation, saying that lately, the neighbouring country has faced great embarrassments on several fronts.

    Maj-Gen Iftikhar said that India has border issues with many of its neighbours including China, Bhutan and Nepal.

    He went on to say that India faced great humiliation in the recent military standoff with China, The Modi government faced embarrassment in map issues with Nepal as well. “India is meddling in issues where it doesn’t even have a border.”

    India, the DG ISPR said, is facing many internal challenges especially after the emergence of coronavirus, “The deadly virus is taking its toll on the Indian economy.”

    He said that many issues have emerged in India after the August 5, 2019 move, which revoked the special status of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJ&K).

    “There is an emergence of Islamophobia in India. Even many countries including the United States has objected to this problem. Now they [India] think the best way out of this situation is to divert the attention towards Pakistan.”

    The military’s spokesperson also said that the situation along Line of Control (LoC) is worrisome and India has violated the ceasefire agreement many times during recent times. “This year 1,229 ceasefire violations took place and seven civilians were martyred.”

    The Pakistan Army brought down many Indian quadcopters, he said, adding that any Indian aggression will be responded in a befitting manner.

    The DG ISPR said that Pakistan is ready to give access to the international media as it has done in the past.

    Maj-Gen Iftikhar warned that there will be uncontrollable and unintended consequences of any military adventurism against Pakistan and advised India: “Let’s not play with fire.”

    He again rejected the Indian allegations of so-called launchpads and infiltration, terming Pulwama attack as a “drama”.

    Pakistan has never denied access to the UN Military Observer Group and the international media on its side of the border, he said, adding that things can become clear if the Indian side also allows access to the UN military observer group.”

  21. Turkey ‘to explore hydrocarbon resources in EEZ over Libya deal’
    https://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkey-to-explore-hydrocarbon-resources-in-eez-over-libya-deal-155287

    “Turkish authorities have made parceling of the economic zone in the eastern Mediterranean under a deal sealed with Libya, and Ankara is getting ready for drilling activities in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ), Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavu?o?lu said on June 3.

    Turkey’s position in the eastern Mediterranean and the deals made with Libya has two objectives, the minister said in an interview with private broadcaster 24 TV.

    “Firstly, to preserve the rights of Turkish Cypriots and secondly to protect our interests in our continental shelf,” he said, emphasizing the maritime boundary delimitation agreement with Libya aims this.

    Turkey aims for cooperation with others in the eastern Mediterranean, the minister also underlined. Turkish and Greek Cypriots should first agree to reach this understanding of cooperation, Çavu?o?lu stated.

    The minister recalled that the maritime delimitation area on the side of Turkey is subject to the current plans of drillings activities and the coordinates of this area respect six miles distance from the Greek Islands.

    On Ankara’s drilling vessels working in the eastern Mediterranean, the minister said Turkish activities in the region are in line with international law.

    Çavu?o?lu also stressed that any agreement on the eastern Mediterranean without Turkish participation would be “null and void” and Ankara would not allow any fait accompli.

    “They tried to exclude us. We’re saying that no deal and cooperation will be valid and will yield no result if Turkey is not included,” he said.

    Turkey may begin oil exploration in the eastern Mediterranean within three or four months under a deal it signed with Libya that was condemned by others in the region including Greece, Energy Minister Fatih Dönmez said on May 29.

    Turkey’s new Kanuni drillship will also go to the Mediterranean later this year, he added.

    Turkey and Libya’s U.N.-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) signed the maritime delimitation deal last year. Turkey says it creates an exclusive economic zone from its southern coast to Libya’s northeastern coast and protects rights to resources.

    Ça?atay Erciyes, director-general for Bilateral Political and Maritime-Aviation-Border Affairs of the Foreign Ministry, shared maps on his Twitter account displaying the boundaries Turkey’s exclusive economic zone coordinates in the eastern Mediterranean over the deal with Libya registered to the United Nations and stated that the upcoming exploration of hydrocarbon resources will take place in this region.

    “Turkish Petroleum’s recent request for new off-shore survey and exploitation licenses cover areas within these boundaries,” Erciyes said.

    Meanwhile, a National Security Council statement on June 2 also reiterated Turkey’s determination to protect its interests in the eastern Mediterranean.

    “The negative approaches of some actors, who have come together around the common denominator of animosity towards Turkey, to the legitimate and legal steps Turkey takes in the Mediterranean were evaluated,” the council said in the statement after a meeting.

    Turkey’s rights, relations and interests on land, at sea and in the air will continue to be protected without any concessions, read the statement.

    Turkey is a guarantor nation for the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and has consistently contested the Greek Cypriot administration’s unilateral drilling in the Eastern Mediterranean, asserting that the Turkish Cyprus also has rights to the resources in the area.

    In 1974, following a coup aimed at the annexation of Cyprus by Greece, Ankara had to intervene as a guarantor power. In 1983, Turkish Cyprus was founded.”

  22. Turkey continues purging terrorists from armed forces
    https://www.aa.com.tr/en/turkey/turkey-continues-purging-terrorists-from-armed-forces/1863639

    “The Turkish army dismissed 4,562 personnel and stripped 531 retired soldiers of their ranks as part of its operations against Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), the group behind the defeated coup of 2016, the country’s defense minister said Wednesday.

    “Our aim is to purge terrorists from our ranks and not allow even a single traitor to adorn this glorious military uniform,” Hulusi Akar said.

    The figures take into account dismissals after the state of emergency was lifted in 2018.

    All personnel with alleged links to FETO face thorough investigation.

    “Our fight with all terrorist organizations, including FETO, will continue. We are working closely with intelligence services, to do everything necessary with every bit of information,” Akar went on to say.

    Since the failed coup attempt in July 15, 2016, some 19,583 personnel were dismissed from the forces. Of them 4,156 personnel are still under legal investigation.

    FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the coup bid which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

    Turkey accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.”

  23. False Negatives and Reinfections: the Challenges of SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR Testing

    Now that COVID-19 diagnostics are available in most of the United States, media reports are surfacing about false-negative test results and the possibility of reinfection. We break down some of the major challenges of SARS-CoV-2 testing, including issues of test performance and interpretation, to give these reports context. Caveat: evolving!

    https://asm.org/Articles/2020/April/False-Negatives-and-Reinfections-the-Challenges-of

  24. Former Obama Intelligence Official Helps Secure Bail for Molotov Cocktail-Throwing NYC Lawyer

    Former official said alleged firebomber is her ‘best friend’

    A former Obama administration intelligence official who worked in both the Departments of State and Defense has guaranteed bail for a human rights lawyer accused of firebombing a police vehicle in New York City.

    The former official, Salmah Rizvi, told a judge the alleged firebomber is her “best friend.” Rizvi, now an attorney at the D.C.-based law firm Ropes & Gray, helped secure the release of fellow lawyer Urooj Rahman by agreeing to be a suretor for her bail. That means Rizvi is liable for the full cost of the $250,000 bail if Rahman fails to obey the court’s orders.

    Rahman was released to home confinement over the objections of government attorneys after her arrest on Saturday for throwing a lit Molotov cocktail through the window of an NYPD vehicle. Evidence presented by prosecutors included images of Rahman holding a Molotov cocktail in the passenger seat of a van that was later found to be full of the necessary materials for making the explosive devices.

    U.S. District Judge Margo Brodie acknowledged the strong evidence against Rahman, who was also accused of distributing the incendiary devices to other rioters, but agreed to grant her bail due to the “willingness of family and friends to sign on as suretors,” according to a report from Law360.

    Rizvi appeared in front of the court during Rahman’s Monday arraignment to certify her willingness to guarantee Rahman’s bail, according to a transcript of the proceedings obtained by the Washington Free Beacon. “Urooj Rahman is my best friend and I am an associate at the law firm Ropes & Gray in Washington, D.C.,” Rizvi told the court. “I earn $255,000 a year.”

    Neither Rizvi nor Ropes & Gray responded to requests for comment.

    Rizvi entered the legal field after a career in the Obama administration’s intelligence community, where “her high-value work would often inform the President’s Daily Briefs,” according to her bio at the Islamic Scholarship Fund.
    The group gave Rizvi a law school scholarship sponsored by the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a radical anti-Israel organization that has been tied to the funding of global terror networks.

    During Rizvi’s time at the New York University School of Law, she was a fellow at Ramallah-based legal organization Al-Haq, which was founded to challenge the “legal status of Israel as an occupying power.” The group is best known for filing lawsuits aimed at delegitimizing Israel and providing legal backing for the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement against the Jewish state.

    The group has been criticized for its defense of the “right to resist” by Palestinian terrorist organizations and its defense and promotion of violent actions taken against Israel.

    Rizvi was also provided a scholarship toward her law degree by the Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans, which was started by the now-deceased older brother of liberal billionaire George Soros.

    Rahman was arrested along with Colinford Mattis, a New York City attorney who was driving the van carrying the explosives. Authorities say a witness came forward to say Rahman was passing out Molotov cocktails to others at protests in Brooklyn early Saturday morning. Authorities released a picture of Rahman holding a Molotov cocktail fashioned out of a Bud Light bottle.

    Rahman and Mattis were charged with causing damage to a police vehicle by fire and explosives and face up to 20 years in prison.

    Government prosecutors argued that releasing the pair was a mistake given that tensions between protesters and the police remain high.

    “We don’t believe this is the time to be releasing a bomb-thrower like the defendant into the community,” argued federal prosecutor Ian Richardson.

    The judge in the case ultimately ruled, however, that the decision by Rizvi and others to guarantee the bail swayed him to grant them home detention.

    “Home detention secured by the financial well-being of his entire family and several high-earning colleagues and friends should be an adequate deterrent to further danger to the community,” said Judge Steven Gold, whose ruling was held up by Judge Brodie on the same grounds.

    Rahman was ordered by the court to forfeit all travel documents and remain in her home with a GPS device attached to her body. All travel must be approved by an officer of the court assigned to her case.

    https://freebeacon.com/latest-news/former-obama-intelligence-official-helps-secure-bail-for-molotov-cocktail-throwing-nyc-lawyer/

  25. BLM protest in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. It was shut down by police because too many people showed up, making social distancing impossible.
    Some protesters reacted violently. Explosive used at 1m40
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EDFxcOiYdjQ

    More footage
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdrrQavbguA

    Articles:
    https://nltimes.nl/2020/06/03/rotterdam-blm-protest-halted-thousands-show-erasmus-bridge
    Two hours later, police acknowledged there was some property damage, including broken windows, fences, and terrace chairs. Video circulating on social media also showed a minor clash between a few demonstrators and police at the northeastern end of the Erasmus Bridge.
    [..]
    The third day of protesting in the Netherlands included the event on the Erasmus Bridge in Rotterdam. The protests follow hours after the city’s mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb moved the venue to a larger area to ensure social distancing, warning of a heavy police presence at the scene.
    While estimates in local media suggest that between 4,000 and 5,000 demonstrators showed up to the protest, the police told NL Times that the number could not be confirmed, pointing out that their main concern has been ensuring social distancing among the protestors by using drones and by issuing an NL Alert. “We’re telling people to keep their distance. That’s our main business right now,” a police spokesperson confirmed.

    https://nltimes.nl/2020/06/04/two-arrests-rotterdam-black-lives-matter-protest-ended
    There was some unrest in Rotterdam on Wednesday evening after the local authorities ended a demonstration against racist police brutality about half an hour before it was scheduled to end. The police had to intervene in a few incidents of vandalism. Two people were arrested, one for throwing a firework at a police officer, RTL Nieuws reports.

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