Reader’s Links for September 30, 2020

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

111 Replies to “Reader’s Links for September 30, 2020”

  1. (Richard: This one is worth the time it takes to read, it explains why China is making the moves they are and why India is so violently opposed to what China has planned. Right now India’s best hopes seem to be that Trump wins in November and continues to push the economic war against China. If the CCP doesn’t fall and continues their current path they will start a war with India that will be existential for India. If this war starts (if the CCP doesn’t fall it is a given that the war will be fought) either India wins or India itself will be destroyed as they lose the water necessary to keep their population alive.The threat to India will be so great they will not hesitate to use nuclear weapons to keep their people alive. The wild card in this scenario is Pakistan, at the moment they are a client state of China and are willingly being used to divert Indian troops and equipment away from the Tibetan region. The question is how will they react when China starts diverting a large portion of their water supply off to feed farm land in China? Whose side will then be on?)

    China Plans to ‘Turn Xinjiang Into California’ by Diverting Indian Rivers, Experts Say
    The first in an occasional series on the Indus River

    China’s plans to divert two trans-Himalayan rivers that sustain millions in downstream regions in India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh are adding to India’s burgeoning concerns, experts say, at a time when tensions along the China–India border continue to simmer.

    The experts say India should establish an “international multilateral framework” to deal with China’s plans, which include a project that one Chinese geotechnical engineer says would “turn Xinjiang into California.”

    At issue are two mighty rivers, the Brahmaputra and the Indus, which originate in Tibet. The Indus runs through northwestern India into Pakistan, while the Brahmaputra flows through northeastern India into Bangladesh. Both are among the longest and largest rivers in the world.

    India is named after the Indus, and the word Hindu comes from it; the river is sacred to India’s Hindus and central to the development of India’s civilization.

    For many years, China has planned to divert the Brahmaputra, called the Yarlung Zangbo in Tibet, and the Indus from their place of origin to the arid regions in China’s Xinjiang Autonomous Region. Both of the rivers flow from the Tibetan plateau into two Indian states that share border disputes with China.

    • (Richard: If the numbers in the first paragraph are correct China is going to collapse in the near future and that collapse will make the collapse of the Soviet Union look small. The figures mentioned lend credence to the theory that the CCP seeing the collapse of China in the close future deliberately turned the Wuhan Flu loose on the world to ensure that China wasn’t the only nation that suffers a major economic collapse. If also explains the military moves China has been making, they are hoping to find some place they can take quickly and loot for enough assets that they can avoid their own collapse.)

      China’s Largest Real Estate Developers Face Financing Crunch

      A new study on China’s real estate market reported by state media paints a bleak picture: 76 of the biggest real estate developers need to repay 2,500 trillion yuan ($367 trillion) in the next 12 months, including 177 trillion yuan ($25.69 trillion) in interest.

      Such enormous debt has prompted real estate firms to refinance.

      A second study, conducted by private financial data service supplier Chinese Beike Institute, revealed that Chinese property developers issued 307 bonds in the third quarter of 2020 and collected about 324.7 trillion yuan ($47.67 trillion) from Chinese and overseas financial markets.

      “The scale of financing in Q3 is 14 percent higher than Q3 in 2019, and is the highest one in history,” the study concludes.

      Property developers also gave big discounts to new buyers, and sought to restructure to pare their debts.

      In August, Evergrande, China’s largest real estate firm by sales volume, asked the Guangdong provincial government to help restructure its assets to avert a cash crunch.

    • Threatening the Indus isn’t neighborly.
      Establishing an “international multilateral framework” – lotsa luck. China’s permanent seat -veto- on the UNSC is more than a thumb on the scale. They’ve already suborned key committee chairs.

      I’m hoping India’s BBF, Russia, will do its sneaky best. They can’t really count on many others. Their “non-aligned” position isn’t easily forgotten by very-much-aligned others.

  2. AMNESIA?: James Comey has convenient & MAJOR memory lapses during testimony

    Former FBI Director James Comey couldn’t remember much during his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee. He only knew what he read recently in news reports, he said. He didn’t answer questions directly.

    The hearing with Comey was finally called by Chairman of the Committee Sen. Lindsey Graham, of South Carolina. He had been promising this testimony since before he took over as Chairman of the Committee.

  3. From swedish news outlet Fria Tider, English courtesy of Google Translate:

    29 September 2020 Powerful car bomb in the Stockholm ghetto
    A powerful car bomb exploded at the center of Fittja on Tuesday night. The car is completely demolished. It was just before 2 o’clock last night that the police were alerted to a loud bang in Fittja in Botkyrka in Stockholm.
    “Patrols who arrived at the scene found a car with major damage that may have been caused by a detonation,” the police write on their website.
    An ambulance was sent to the scene but no one was injured.
    According to Expressen , the car is “totally demolished” and the newspaper’s photographer saw a stub thread on the ground.
    – The car was badly damaged, says Helena Boström Thomas, press spokesperson at the Stockholm Police, to the newspaper.
    Bomb technicians have been on the scene and a large area was cordoned off. The place was still cordoned off on Tuesday morning.
    The incident is classified as general destruction. No one is arrested.

  4. Three Iran Guards Killed in Drive-by Attack in Southeast

    “Three members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards were killed by unknown assailants on Tuesday in the country’s southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchistan, state media reported.

    “At 4 PM (1230 GMT) today, two cars belonging to Nikshahr county’s Basij (state-sanctioned volunteer militia) were attacked by the passengers of a Peugeot 405 while on the road,” IRNA news agency said, quoting a statement by the Guards.

    A Guards’ member was also wounded, it added, saying the identity of the assailants was under investigation.

    Sistan-Baluchistan has long been a flashpoint where Pakistan-based Baluchi separatists and jihadists carry out cross-border raids.

    The jihadist outfit Jaish al-Adl (“Army of Justice”) has in the past attacked and abducted Iranian security personnel.

    In one incident, 27 guards died in a suicide attack targeting a bus in the province in February 2019.

    Jaish al-Adl was formed in 2012 as a successor to the Sunni extremist group Jundallah (Soldiers of God), which waged a deadly insurgency for a decade before it was severely weakened by the capture and execution of its leader Abdolmalek Rigi in 2010.”

  5. US Blacklists More Syrians in Fresh Push for Assad to End War

    “The United States on Wednesday blacklisted what it called “key enablers” of Syrian president Bashar Assad’s government, reinforcing efforts to push Damascus back to United Nations-led negotiations to end Syria’s nearly decade-long war.

    The United States imposed sanctions on 13 entities and six individuals, including the governor of the Central Bank of Syria, in a fresh round of sanctions aimed at cutting off revenue for Assad’s government.

    “The United States will continue to employ all of its tools and authorities to target the finances of anyone who profits from or facilitates the Assad regime’s abuse of the Syrian people,” US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.

    US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo separately warned that the targeting of officials, commanders and “corrupt business leaders will not cease until the Assad regime and its enablers take irreversible steps to end their campaign of violence against the Syrian people and genuinely implement United Nations Security Council Resolution 2254.”

    A brutal crackdown by Assad on protesters in 2011 led to the war, with Iran and Russia backing the government and the United States supporting the opposition.

    Millions of people have fled Syria and millions more have been internally displaced…”

  6. UAE accuses Turkey of trying to restore ‘colonial rule’ over Arab world

    “The United Arab Emirates has lashed out at “interference” in Arab affairs and defended the decision to normalise ties with Israel.

    Speaking at the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, Emirati Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed said foreign powers were trying to restore “their domination and colonial rule” over the Arab world, an apparent reference to Abu Dhabi’s regional foes Turkey and Iran.

    “The tensions in Yemen, Syria, Libya, Iraq and other states are all related to blatant interference in Arab affairs made by states that incite strife and discord, or that have historical delusions of restoring their domination and colonial rule over the Arab region and the Horn of Africa. The result has been brutal wars,” he said.

    “In this context, we recall our firm position of rejecting regional interference in Arab affairs, and request full respect for sovereignty which is fully consistent with international law and international norms.”

    Bin Zayed addressed the international body during the second week of the General Assembly, an annual meeting of leaders of UN member states.

    This year, due to the novel coronavirus, most of the meeting is being held with pre-recorded messages.

    The United Arab Emirates’ chief diplomat also criticised Turkey’s role in Libya, saying its actions had “undermined efforts to reach a peaceful solution and destabilised the entire region”….”

  7. Turkey: Armenia transports hundreds of PKK militants to fight Azerbaijan

    “Armenia has been transporting hundreds of militants from the Kurdish terror group the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and what Turkey believes is the group’s Syrian branch, the Peoples’ Protection Units (YPG), in its renewed fight against Azerbaijan over the Armenia-occupied region of Nagorno-Karabakh, Turkish security sources claim.

    Around 300 militants belonging to the Kurdish groups were transported by Armenia from various countries in the Middle East and placed in Nagorno-Karabakh, where they have subsequently begun training Armenian militias in battle and guerrilla tactics against Azerbaijani forces over the past month or two, they added, speaking on condition of anonymity.

    Turkish media reported them saying the transfer of militants was a result of a covert deal struck between Armenia and the PKK towards the end of July. The Armenian militias trained by the Kurdish militants are also reportedly those carrying out attacks on Azeri civilian settlements.

    The militants reportedly make their way to Armenia through transit routes mainly in Iran and sometimes from northern Iraq…”

  8. US to manufacture space missiles in Saudi Arabia

    “A Saudi corporation yesterday signed an initial memorandum of understanding (MoU) with a leading American company to manufacture missiles domestically, the local Okaz newspaper reported.

    The deal, which was signed between the US’ Advanced CNG Technologies Inc. and the kingdom’s Tawazun Gulf Trading Group, aimed at “transferring expertise, technologies and providing technical training to Saudi youth”.

    The MoU was signed at a ceremony by Tawazun’s General Manager, Abdul Rahman Al-Tambakti, and the American company’s representative.

    “The manufacturing work is underway to obtain the necessary industrial licenses, as well as benefit from the funds provided, whether from governmental or private financing agencies, whether local or global, in order to achieve the objectives of the project that is in line with Vision 2030,” Al-Tambakti told reporters, adding that the project would be launched “in the Saudi capital of Riyadh during the second half of next year 2021.”

    Advanced CNG Technologies Inc is one of the world’s largest companies in the field of missile components manufacturing technology, space industries, blue and alternative energy, and oil industries, and some components of combat tanks, armoured vehicles, and luxury sports cars.”

  9. France arrests 29 people over cryptocurrency financing of terror in Syria

    “French police arrested 29 individuals yesterday in a sting operation against an alleged network of financiers of extremist groups in Syria, in one of the largest such operations in the country.

    According to French counter-terror prosecutors, the network conducted its financing activities through the purchasing of cryptocurrency coupons which enabled it to send references to contacts within Syria who then credited them to bitcoin accounts.

    This method of funding the extremist groups and contacts is markedly different in comparison to the usual methods of transferring funds and laundering money to groups, with the rise in the use of cryptocurrencies offering possible alternatives to terror groups and their donors.

    The prosecutors’ statement confirmed this, saying: “Constant surveillance of these networks prompted terrorist organizations to seek more opacity by using crypto-currencies such as bitcoin.”

    Those 29 individuals – arrested from various sites across the country – reportedly began their activities in 2019 and the investigation by the French authorities was launched in January this year. It was a branch of the French Finance Ministry named Tracfin that discovered the network, claiming that hundreds of thousands of euros are suspected of having already been supplied to the contacts.

    It was not revealed who the individuals were or if they belonged to a specific organisation, nor was it clarified which terror group they were transferring the funds to, but state-actors have been increasingly encouraged to crack down on money laundering operations and the financing of militias in Syria and other areas in the Middle East.”

  10. Egypt responds to protests by expelling 5 lawyers from Bar Association

    “The Cairo Administrative Court has issued a ruling to expel five detained lawyers from the Bar Association, according to Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.

    The decision includes Osama Morsi, son of the late President Mohamed Morsi, member of the Constitution Amendment Committee and Brotherhood member Sobhi Saleh, and Vice-President of Al-Wasat Party Essam Sultan.

    Abdel Moneim Abdel Maqsoud, a lawyer who has represented many members of the Brotherhood, and Hatem Abdel Sami will also be expelled.

    The court has labelled them “terrorists” whose “hands are contaminated with blood.” It accuses the lawyers of financing weapons deals and offering military training to the Muslim Brotherhood so that they can carry out terror operations against the army, police and judiciary.

    It also called on the Lawyers’ Syndicate to cancel their membership to the union.”

  11. Iraq pledges to protect diplomats after US embassy shutdown threat

    “Iraq will protect foreign mission buildings and ensure only the state has weapons, Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi told 25 top diplomats on Wednesday, after Washington warned it could shut down its Baghdad embassy, Reuters reports.

    The United States has made preparations to withdraw diplomats from Iraq after warning Baghdad it could shut its embassy, two Iraqi officials and two Western diplomats said, a step Iraqis fear could turn their country into a battle zone.

    “Iraq is keen on enforcing the rule of law, the state’s monopoly on having weapons, protecting foreign missions, and diplomatic buildings,” Kadhimi told a meeting of 25 ambassadors and Charges d’Affaires, his office said in a statement.

    “Those who carry out attacks on foreign missions are seeking to destabilise Iraq and sabotage its regional and international relations,” he said.

    Rockets regularly fly across the Tigris towards the heavily fortified US diplomatic compound…”

    • Moving out embassy personnel is understood as a prelude to kinetic reprisal for rocket attacks in the Green Zone. That’s why the official Iraqi govt making these alarmed noises.

  12. Somalia: Up to 2.1M people face acute food crisis

    “Up to 2.1 million people in Somalia are expected to face an acute food insecurity Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or even worse outcomes through December 2020, a new report said on Wednesday, Anadolu reports.

    The crisis expected to occur “through December 2020 in the absence of humanitarian assistance,” is due to “the combined effects of widespread and severe flooding, Desert Locust infestation, socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 and the cumulative impacts of previous shocks,” Food Security and Nutrition Unit (FSNAU), a project managed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN, said in the report.

    “In addition, 849,900 children under the age of five are likely to be acutely malnourished through August 2021,” the report read.

    “From October to December, food insecurity is expected to deteriorate among poor households with limited livestock or low capacity to cope with harvest losses,” the report warned…”

  13. ‘AQIS terrorist’ gunned down in Karachi encounter

    “An alleged member of Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) was shot dead in an encounter with the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) police on the Hawkes Bay Road late on Tuesday night.

    According to CTD in-charge Mazhar Mashwani, the police launched an operation near Musharraf Colony based on a tip-off but were met with gunfire.

    As the police retaliated, one of the alleged terrorists was shot and injured, he said, adding that his apparently accomplices managed to escape from the spot.

    Mashwani claimed the injured terrorist, identified as Saeed alias Loha, succumbed to his injuries while being shifted to Dr Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital…”

  14. Turkey detains 13 ISIL terror suspects

    “A total of 13 people with suspected links to the ISIL terror group were detained in Turkey, security sources said on Sept. 30.

    The suspects, who entered Turkey through illegal means and were active in Syria and Iraq, were apprehended in simultaneous operations by anti-terror teams in Istanbul, said the sources, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

    A number of documents and digital materials were also seized…”

  15. Erdogan urges E. Med dialogue in letter to EU leaders

    “Turkey’s president on Wednesday sent a letter to the leaders of EU countries, reiterating Ankara’s call for dialogue with Greece amid tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean.

    “I would like to emphasize once again that we are ready for dialogue with Greece without any preconditions,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in the letter addressed to the heads of EU institutions, as well as the leaders of member countries in the bloc except for Greece and the Greek Cypriot administration.

    Erdogan underlined that relations with Brussels have always been a priority for Turkey and that “significant progress has been achieved in this regard, especially during our term in office.”

    He noted, however, that there have been “compelling challenges” in the six decades spanning the two sides’ relations.

    “Recently, our relations stand in the face of another novel challenge due to the developments in the Eastern Mediterranean.”

    In the Eastern Mediterranean, tensions have been running high for weeks as Greece has disputed Turkey’s energy exploration.

    Turkey — the country with the longest coastline on the Mediterranean — sent out drill ships to explore for energy on its continental shelf, asserting its own rights in the region, as well as those of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

    To reduce tensions, Ankara has called for dialogue to ensure fair sharing of the region’s resources…”

  16. Turkey neutralizes 2 YPG/PKK terrorists in N.Syria

    “Turkey neutralized two YPG/PKK terrorists who attempted to infiltrate into its anti-terror operation area in northern Syria, the Turkish National Defense Ministry said on Wednesday.

    The infiltration attempts and attacks of the YPG/PKK terror group to disturb the peace and security in the region were prevented, the ministry said in a statement.

    “Our heroic commandos neutralized 2 PKK/YPG terrorists in the Operation Peace Spring zone,” said the ministry.

    Turkish authorities use the term “neutralize” to imply the terrorists in question surrendered or were killed or captured…”

  17. Shots fired as Tunisian fishing boat rams Italian vessel

    “An Italian finance police unit opened fire after a Tunisian fishing boat disobeyed an order to stop and rammed a patrol vessel, sources said Wednesday.

    The Italian finance police and the coast guard had intervened after the fishing boat, the Mohanel Anmed, put down nets in Italian territorial waters.

    The boat refused to stop and a chase ensued in international waters in which shots were fired.

    In the end the finance police managed to halt the fishing boat and they are taking it to the Italian island of Lampedusa.

    photo: a file image of a Coast Guard boat.”

  18. Beijing’s crackdown on religious minorities takes aim at 10,000 Muslim Utsuls

    “While China’s oppressive measures against Uighur Muslims in the Xinjiang region has garnered international attention, Beijing has begun expanding its surveillance of another Muslim minority: the Utsuls of Hainan Island. But efforts to crack down on the peaceful religious minority could backfire and push it to radicalisation, experts warn…”

  19. Following Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack, Marine Le Pen demands return of unaccompanied minors to their home countries

    “French politician Marine Le Pen, president of the National Rally (RN) party, demanded on Tuesday the return of unaccompanied minors to their country of origin because she believes they generate enormous amounts of crime and cause “exorbitant financial cost”.

    “True unaccompanied minors do not have to stay on our territory, but must, in conjunction with Unicef ??and NGOs specializing in these issues, be repatriated to their country of origin in order to be protected there. and to find their home,” Le Pen wrote in a press release of the party.

    She also repeated her call to make bone tests compulsory to verify the age of these unaccompanied minors, however controversial the process may be.

    As Remix News reported earlier, the Pakistani man who seriously injured two people with a meat cleaver last Friday in what authorities handle as an Islamist terrorist attack, has been in state social care although social workers had asked for a bone test, because he looked much older than his stated age. Their request was denied by a local juvenile tribunal.

    Since then, the terrorist has confessed to police that he is actually 25 and that his real name is Zaheen Hassan Mahmoud, admitting that he was born in Pakistan in 1995 and not 2020, according to information released by France’s national anti-terrorism prosecutor at a press conference on Tuesday.

    The suspect initially said his name was Hassan Ali and that he was born in 2002, which enabled him to receive extra child welfare benefits when he arrived in France in 2018. During his interrogation, he was confronted with documents found on his phone proving his real name and age, at which point he admitted to his true identity.

    Le Pen demanded that the technique of bone tests be “made compulsory” to verify the age of all unaccompanied minors.

    “Today, only the technique of bone tests allows this verification; it must be made compulsory before any attribution of this status,” Le Pen said, adding that she intends to table a bill in this regard.

    “The daily crime generated by these alleged minors, which now leads to terrorism, but also the exorbitant financial cost of services, show the shortcomings and the multiple risks that weigh on the lives of the French because of the political choices of successive governments,” Le Pen said.

    In an interview with Le Figaro, Jean-Louis Thiériot, the former president of the departmental council of Seine-et-Marne in Paris, said migrants often claim to be minors due to the benefits they receive due to their protected status and that nearly 80 percent of such claims in his area of Paris were cases of fraud.

    Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin on Tuesday promised to address the sensitive issue of unaccompanied minors due to information that revealed the attacker’s true age was 25.

    “The prefect of Val-d’Oise and the department where the assailant had received social assistance for children, have done their job, and the bone test was admittedly refused by the judge, but it is not 100% reliable,” Darmanin told the National Assembly during questions to the government.

    Migrants lie about their age in many European countries
    Cases of migrants lying about their age to gain protected status and access to other benefits has been prevalent in other countries like Sweden, Belgium and Germany.

    For example, a report from the BBC detailed how an incredible 84 percent of “child migrants” tested by Swedish health authorities were actually adults aged 18 or older.

    In Germany, 400,000 migrants have their birthday listed as Jan. 1 because the German government does not know their true birth date. One German university medical study of 600 migrants also revealed at least 40 percent of them lied about being a “child migrant” and were actually adults.

    Another government study in Belgium found that 73 percent of “child migrants” are actually adults who are lying about their age.

    Le Pen’s stance backed by other French figures
    Prominent French philosopher and essayist, Éric Zemmour, has also demanded the expulsion of all so-called unaccompanied minor migrants, saying, “Each foreign minor costs us €50,000… They are all thieves, rapists, and murderers.”

    Zemmour also demanded more transparency in criminal trials, which often hide the name and ethnic identity of perpetrators, which he said would reveal who is responsible for the vast majority of crime in France.

    “If the trials were filmed, we would see if there is not a link between crime and immigration. We would see who the victims are and who the criminals are. We would see the reality in France,” he said during an appearance on the CNews television program in France.

    Gilles-William Goldnadel, a lawyer and essayist, wrote, “The name of the French tragedy is massive immigration” in reference to last week’s Islamic terrorist attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo.

    He continued by stating that the Pakistani migrant who carried out the attack is “part of this growing cohort of supposed minors, estimated today at 40,000 individuals who cause 60 percent of crimes and offenses in the Paris region.””

  20. German court evicts elderly couple from home to accommodate refugees

    “A district court in Nürtingen, Germany, confirmed an eviction claim that orders an elderly pensioner couple from Neckartailfingen to move out by the end of the month because the local community wants to accommodate refugees in their apartment, Germans news outlet Wendlingen-Nürtinger Zeitung reported.

    The 76-year-old man, who suffered a stroke last year, and his 73-year-old partner have to leave their six-room apartment, which they have been renting for 25 years. According to the court, which confirmed the eviction claim, accommodating refugees is more important than any other hardship.

    “Since we received the notice of our eviction, our health has deteriorated,” says the elderly woman.

    Although the couple will move to a two-room apartment, offered by the community as an alternative, going to the village will be extremely difficult for the 76-year-old man with a walker.

    The couple says they feel left alone.

    “We don’t know what happens next, and the time until the end of the month is getting shorter and shorter,” said the 76-year-old before the moving day, which was set for Sept. 30.

    ‘We do not stand a chance’
    The pensioners had tried everything to stay in the familiar surroundings after the Neckartailfingen community sent them termination of the lease at the end of October 2018. The municipality now intends to use their home for the planned accommodation of refugees in the future.

    A few months ago, the old couple pointed out their health issues when appealing against the eviction action, ordered by the municipality of Neckartailfingen. The previous year, the 76-year-old man suffered a stroke and has been using a walker since then, just like his 73-year-old partner.

    Although the judge of the district court had recognized the “hardship” of the pensioners, it “does not outweigh the justified interests of the landlord.”

    The senior citizens appealed against the decision. Three judges from the Stuttgart Regional Court rejected this appeal without further hearing. According to them, the municipality has “a legitimate reason” for the eviction since “the apartment is necessary for the fulfillment of public law tasks and obligations.”

    The community has “clearly demonstrated and proven that they need the apartment to accommodate refugees,” the court continued.

    “We do not stand a chance,” the 76-year-old stated, adding, however, that the judgment is unfair.

    The kitchen in the new apartment will be completely unfurnished and without a sink. The municipality also wants a deposit of two months’ rent even though there was no such requirement in their current apartment.

    And what happens to the furniture from the bigger apartment that can no longer be used in the new, smaller one?

    “The tenants are responsible for the disposal of the furniture,” Mayor Gerhard Gertitschke stated on the topic.

    The community had also promised to help the senior couple with moving, which will be very difficult because of the narrow stairs in the building, however, Mayor Gertitschke’s response appears to show little sympathy for the two pensioners.

    “You can use your vehicle. Also, there are now very good electrically powered walkers and electric vehicles that are street legal,” he added.

    When and how many asylum seekers will move in the apartment has not yet been determined.

    “I’ll deal with that when the tenants have moved out,” said Mayor Gertitschke.”

  21. Muslims allowed to pray during working hours, Swedish court rules

    “Swedish employers must not prevent their employees from praying during working hours, a Swedish administrative court in Malmö has ruled.

    The ruling requires employers to allow Muslims rituals in the workplace, such as pulling out their prayer rug, bowing to Mecca, and praying to Allah.

    The Malmö court thus overturned a decision by Bromöll City Council in the south of the country, which explicitly banned prayers during work last year. The ban was aimed at all religions, but practically restricted orthodox Muslims, who pray on the rug up to five times a day. Other believers traditionally go to temples outside of work. The decision was enforced by councilors from the Swedish Democrats, but also the Christian Democrats.

    Last year, a city resident reported the case to a discriminatory ombudsman, who then sent him to the administrative court for review. According to the court’s ruling, the city council decided restricting Muslim prayer in the workplace was a violation of the Swedish constitution and religious freedoms guaranteed by the European Union.

    The councilors argued that the decision could not be seen as a total ban on all prayers. It is still said that there is the possibility of consultation and the granting of individual exemptions. However, the court rejected the argument because the original decision did not provide for any such possibility.

    It is not yet clear whether the council intends to appeal against the verdict. The work of the Böromel Council may also be complicated by the fact that it is currently without a chairman, as the last one, Eric Berntsson, resigned in August for personal reasons.”

  22. Quebec police given ‘telewarrant’ system to enforce new lockdown orders

    Quebec police will be able to quickly receive a warrant remotely in order to enter the homes of people suspected of hosting illegal gatherings, Premier Francois Legault said Wednesday.

    On the eve of a 28-day lockdown order for the province’s two largest cities, Legault said police are being asked to crack down on Quebecers violating the new rules imposed to reduce rising COVID-19 infections.

    “I want to be very clear here, the police are not going to start knocking at random on every door in Quebec,” Legault told reporters in Quebec City. “There will be no witch hunts … the police will only do it if there is reason to believe that the law is not being respected.”

    Quebec moved three regions, including the Montreal and Quebec City areas, into the highest pandemic alert level. Starting Thursday, bars, cinemas and other venues are ordered closed in those regions while restaurants will be limited to takeout.

    The new measures also prohibit private gatherings and specify that people cannot have any visitors at their homes from another address, with very few exceptions such as caregivers or service providers. Outdoor gatherings are also illegal among people from different households.

    The new orders are in effect for at least 28 days, Legault said. About five million people live in the affected regions.

    If police suspect an illegal gathering, they can remotely contact a judge and receive a “telewarrant,” Legault said, “that same evening.” Anyone caught violating the rules face a $1,000 fine on the spot, he said.

    As for protests, including antimask protests, those not wearing a mask could be subject to a $1,000 fine right across the province.

    Quebec reported 838 new COVID-19 cases and one more death attributed to the novel coronavirus on Wednesday.

    Legault said the idea isn’t to ticket people en masse starting Thursday, but to urge people to comply with the rules.

    Public Security Minister Genevieve Guilbault said she trusts police officers to assess situations and intervene as needed.

    “Again, the police will probably do a preventive intervention, reminding the person to wear their mask,” Guilbault said.

    “If the person puts on his mask, it’s a safe bet that it will stop there … but if they stubbornly refuse and there’s an altercation … at that moment, we fall into the police intervention.”

    Quebec’s Health Department said Wednesday hospitalizations were up by 15, to 262. The number of patients in intensive care rose by two, to 43.

    Health authorities have reported a total of 74,288 COVID-19 infections and 5,834 deaths linked to the virus since the beginning of the pandemic. The province considers 62,564 people recovered.

    Montreal and Quebec City reported the highest numbers of new COVID-19 infections on Wednesday, with 318 and 134 cases respectively.

  23. CBC – Quebec’s political class takes on radio station that gives voice to the anti-mask movement

    Ads pulled from Quebec City’s notoriously controversial CHOI Radio X

    On an overcast Sunday in the middle of May, a group of about 60 people from the Montreal area jumped into their cars and drove to the National Assembly in Quebec City to protest, among other things, World Health Organization “tyranny”.

    They were brought together through an obscure Facebook group, and a straight line can be drawn between that caravan and a decision this week by Quebec City Mayor Régis Labeaume to yank his municipal administration’s ads from CHOI Radio X, a talk-radio outlet known for its abiding love of controversy.

    Around the time that May protest was being organized, an accountant and fringe politician named Stéphane Blais established a group that has since staged multiple rallies against the restrictions aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19.

    The group is part of a curious alliance of libertarians, anti-government QAnon-types, evangelicals, minor internet celebrities and far-right activists.

    Roxane Martel-Perron, an expert on right-wing extremism in Quebec, has been monitoring the spread of conspiracy theories during the pandemic, and said they are steadily infiltrating the mainstream.

    “The social cost right now of being either anti-mask or adhering to conspiracy theories is lower now than it was at the beginning of the pandemic,” said Martel-Perron, the Director of Education and Skills Development at the Center for the Prevention of Radicalization Leading to Violence.

    Labeaume and others are evidently trying to increase that cost.

    Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante, for instance, had this message for a group that’s planning a protest in her city next weekend: “Go find a potato field”.

    Labeaume admitted the conspiracists’ collective effort to muddy the waters on coronavirus mitigation measures like masks “is working,” and on Tuesday called those who obfuscate around the science a threat to public health.

    “We’ve noticed that message, of trivializing health measures, is starting to percolate in the population, in the sense that the message is these measures aren’t necessary … we believed and continue to believe this is a danger to public health,” he said.

    Quebec City decided to target one of the preferred means of spreading the anti-mask and confinement-skeptic message. It pulled its municipal ads from CHOI, a controversial talk-radio station.

    CHOI has regularly welcomed to its airwaves conspiracists and Internet provocateurs like Blais, former union leader Ken Pereira, YouTube maven Alexis Cossette-Trudel, and a host of others.

    Pulling a $9,000 ad campaign presents no significant danger to the station’s finances, but it did carry a symbolic punch.

    After Quebec City’s announcement Monday, more than a dozen advertisers, including a major insurance company, a Crown corporation, several car dealers and a well-known bank quickly followed suit.

    It’s been an eventful few days for CHOI and its parent company, RNC Média.

    Last week the station refused to air an ad produced for the provincial government – which featured the voices of two former Radio X hosts and lampooned the station’s style while taking dead aim at the “charlatans” who peddle misinformation.

    RNC vice-president Phillipe Lefebvre released an open letter denouncing the ad for unfairly maligning the company’s audience and making “a direct link between CHOI Radio X and conspiracists, which we cannot accept under any circumstance.”

    The company has since stressed its employees, many of whom have lent their voices to public health spots, do not traffic in conspiracy talk, even if their guests often do.

    The missive also made a point of repeating the station’s commitment to unfettered free speech.

    Pushing the limits
    That commitment to free speech has been a frequent defence when one of the company’s radio personalities crosses the line of propriety. They have done so routinely, whether it’s in relation to Islam, feminism, Indigenous people, and myriad other topics.

    Colette Brin, a professor at Université Laval and director of the school’s Centre d’études sur les médias, describes Radio X and its hosts as opportunists, not necessarily true believers.

    “(CHOI’s) brand is to push the limit of what is acceptable, or even legal in some cases… their genius, if you want to call it that, is to mix conspiracy in with legitimate criticism,” she said.

    While Brin said it’s generally a poor idea for elected officials to lead advertising boycotts and try to influence a media company’s content, in this case “it can be justified.”

    Research from the CEM and elsewhere concludes it is hard to know what impact marginal movements may have on public opinion, but Labeaume contends that CHOI “is a private business … with a great deal of influence.”

    Politicians of every stripe — including Labeaume and much of the current Coalition Avenir Québec cabinet — have sought to leverage that influence at election time.

    That makes it all the more noteworthy that the same politicians are now scolding them.

    The Radio X audience has declined steadily over the past three years, according to the ratings company Numeris, but the outlet maintains a devoted following.

    Some of those loyal listeners decided to express their displeasure on Labeaume’s personal Facebook page. The mayor reported the most threatening of the 3,500 messages he received to police. The backlash against Labeaume illustrates a key problem in confronting the conspiracy apparatus.

    “This is free publicity,” said Brin, “it’s a great way to attract attention, I’m sure they don’t mind.”

    • Cleveland was a great city. Orchestra, Cleveland Clinic.
      Strong Modern Orthodox community, tight-knit families of Holocaust survivors. After most of my friends from there made aliya, I stopped visiting.

  24. Biden tells Proud Boys “cease and desist” after Trump refused to condemn white supremacy in debate
    Global News – September 30, 2020

  25. “Trump is totally right on Critical Race Theory. It is racist. And it was infecting all our institutions.
    Biden’s response was to call Trump racist. Right then and there on stage. You get it yet?”
    Dave Rubin September 29, 2020 – Twitter

    Video: “Wow, this is Chris Wallace asking Trump the same question in 2016. Any “journalists” wanna share this?”
    Dave Rubin – September 30, 2020 – Twitter

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