Reader’s Links for January 20, 2021

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

78 Replies to “Reader’s Links for January 20, 2021”

  1. Top General Warns Enemies of Iran’s Unimaginable Reciprocal Action to Any Wrong Move

    “Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Hossein Baqeri warned the foreign forces, Americans in particular, that any strategic mistake threatening Iran will draw a rapid and devastating reaction beyond their expectations.

    In a message to the Army chief and the IRGC commander on Wednesday, Major General Baqeri praised the Iranian military units for holding several successful military exercises in the past few weeks.

    The top commander also said that the extra-regional arrogant powers, particularly the terrorist US government and the reactionary regional regimes, are well aware that in case of any wrong move, Iran’s reciprocal military blow would be heavy, devastating and unimaginable.

    Iran’s Armed Force are prepared for instant response and rapid reaction to any strategic mistake threatening the Islamic Republic’s independence, security and territorial integrity, he warned.

    The Iranian Army and the IRGC have held several exercises across Iran over the past two weeks.

    In a war game on Saturday, the IRGC Aerospace Force blasted targets in the northern parts of the Indian Ocean with long-range ballistic missiles from a distance of 1,800 kilometers.”

    • Muslim Combatants to Boot US Out of West Asia: Iranian General

      “A senior spokesman for the General Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces said the Muslim community’s fighters will soon cleanse the West Asia region of the terrorist US Army forces.

      Brigadier General Abolfazl Shekarchi condemned the “terrorist US administration” for imposing sanctions on Astan Quds Razavi, a charitable organization holding trusteeship of the eighth Shiite Imam’s shrine in Iran’s northeastern city of Mashhad.

      Denouncing the blacklisting as a sign of the US’ frustration and downfall, the general said such an action reveals the US’ overt and brazen war against Islam and the Muslim holy values.

      “The Islamic Ummah (community) will give a response to their (American) anti-religious moves in not-too-distant future, and the powerful combatants of the Islamic Ummah will cleanse the West Asia region of the terrorist US Army,” Shekarchi added.

      His comments came after the US Treasury Department added Astan Quds Razavi to the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List (SDN) of the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).”

  2. US Charges Iran Expert with Being Government Agent

    “The United States on Tuesday charged a renowned Iran expert with being an Iranian government agent.

    Lotfolah Kaveh Afrasiabi was arrested at his home near Boston on Monday, the Department of Justice said in a statement.

    He is accused of “acting and conspiring to act as an unregistered agent” of Tehran, the department said.

    “For over a decade, Kaveh Afrasiabi pitched himself to Congress, journalists, and the American public as a neutral and objective expert on Iran,” said John Demers, Assistant Attorney General for National Security.

    “However, all the while, Afrasiabi was actually a secret employee of the government of Iran and the Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations (IMUN) who was being paid to spread their propaganda,” he added.

    Kaveh Afrasiabi’s website says that he had taught at Boston University. He had also been a visiting scholar at Harvard 30 years ago and at Berkeley from 2000-2001.

    Kaveh Afrasiabi has written numerous books, including on the Iran nuclear agreement, and has frequently been quoted by international media.

    He was due to appear in a Boston court on Tuesday. He faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted.”

  3. Muslim scholars call on archbishop to ‘apologise’ for remarks

    “The International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) demanded on Tuesday that the Archbishop of Greece, Ieronymos II, should issue an official apology for what they believe were offensive remarks about Islam and Muslims, Anadolu has reported.

    “The International Union of Muslim Scholars strongly condemn the Archbishop of Greece’s statements, in which he unjustly attacked Islam (…), neglecting the mercy of Islam and the knowledge it has provided to all humanity,” said IUMS Secretary-General Ali Al-Qaradaghi. “His remarks do not serve humanity, and stem from a hidden hatred while confirming the archbishop’s complete ignorance of Islam.”

    He told OPEN TV on Sunday that “Islam is not a religion” and “Muslims always stand with war.” This was in a discussion about the Greek war of independence.

    “Islam and its followers are not a religion, but an ambitious political party and people of war (…) expansionists, this is the peculiarity of Islam, and the teachings of Muhammad call for that,” he added.

    Following complaints about his statements, the archbishop claimed that he was referring to Muslim “militants”. The union called on Archbishop Ieronymos to issue an official apology and not be content with this unacceptable “clarification”.”

  4. UAE signs deal with U.S. to buy 50 F-35 jets and up to 18 drones: sources

    “The United Arab Emirates has signed an agreement with the United States to purchase 50 F-35 jets and up to 18 armed drones, people familiar with the situation told Reuters on Wednesday.

    Although the UAE and the United States were working to ink a deal before President Joseph Biden took office on Wednesday, the new president has said he will re-examine the agreements.

    The UAE, one of Washington’s closest Middle East allies, has long expressed interest in acquiring the stealthy F-35 jets made by Lockheed Martin and was promised a chance to buy them in a side deal when it agreed to normalize relations with Israel last August.

    The U.S. State Department and the UAE Embassy in Washington did not immediately respond to requests for comment…”

  5. Pakistan hopes for revival of ‘high-level’ dialogue with US under Biden

    “When Prime Minister Imran Khan was invited at the White House in July 2019, it was a remarkable turnaround in the bilateral ties given how then president Donald Trump bashed Pakistan earlier for not doing enough in the fight against terrorism.

    The July 22, 2019 meeting between Trump and Imran was made possible by Trump’s close aide Senator Lindsey Graham, who became a fan of the Pakistani prime minister and partly because of the role played by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman.

    The two leaders subsequently met at the side-lines of the UN General Assembly session as well as at the margins of the World Economic Forum in Davos. This was rare that in the span of a few months, the US president had met a Pakistani prime minister that frequently. The reason for this bonhomie stemmed from Pakistan’s support to ensure safe exit for the remaining US troops from Afghanistan.

    On the fact of it, that seemed positive for Pakistan but in reality, the Trump administration had significantly downgraded relationship with Islamabad, according to officials and retired diplomats. During Trump’s tenure, the US did not appoint a full-time ambassador to Islamabad, while reducing the official level engagement to the level of assistant secretary of state.

    With Trump has now left the White House, Pakistan is looking forward to revive the high-level engagement with the US under the Biden presidency.

    Read more: Assuming US presidency, Biden calls for end to ‘uncivil war’

    Biden, who became the 46th President of the United States, is someone who knows Pakistan and this region better than any other US presidents, given the fact that for decades he headed all the powerful US Foreign Relations Committee. He had also worked closely with Pakistan as vice president during president Obama’s 8-year term.

    “This can work in the advantage of Pakistan,” said a senior Pakistani official, who is optimistic that relationship between Pakistan and the US may see a positive turn under the new US administration.

    Pakistan is in touch with the Biden’s team particularly on Afghanistan, which is a major priority of the US at the moment. Pakistan’s Ambassador to US Asad Majid Khan was in Islamabad, recently, and held talks with officials concerned to share his perspective about the incoming administration as well as seek guidance from the government to pursue Pakistan’s interests, according to official sources.

    Pakistan believes that the new US administration would stick to the Afghan peace process, although US Secretary of State-designate Anthony Blinkin told Senate Foreign Relations Committee during his confirmation hearing that Biden administration intended to review the peace deal with the Taliban. He, however, underlined that like Trump administration, the Biden team would want peaceful withdrawal from Afghanistan.

    “There is a certainly a great possibility of the relationship moving in a positive trajectory during President Biden’s term,” said Jalil Abbas Jilani, a former Pakistani ambassador to the US. Jilani, who also served as Pakistan’s foreign secretary, believes that President Biden knows Pakistan and its importance, not just in the context of Afghanistan but overall, in the regional perspective.

    Biden, who as head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, worked on the Kerry-Lugar bill that sought to provide massive civilian assistance to Pakistan as part of the Obama administration’s incentive to Islamabad so that the country could go after all terrorist outfits.

    The Kerry-Lugar bill also envisaged high-level engagement, covering not just security but also other areas in an effort to dispel the impression that relationship between Pakistan and the US were security driven. Jilani, as foreign secretary, had attended those high-level talks.

    The former top diplomat feels that there is a possibility that under the Biden administration that mechanism may be revived. He suggested the current government to push for the revival of high-level engagement between the two countries that is, he believes, essential to understand each other’s view.

    Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry, who also served both Pakistan’s ambassador to US and the foreign secretary, also sees opportunities for Pakistan for better ties under the Biden term. He agrees with Jilani that under Trump there was no high-level engagement between the two countries.

    Although, Biden may not revert to the high-level dialogue during Obama’s term, there is a great possibility of new mechanism of reaching out to Pakistan, according to Aizaz Chaudhry, who currently heads the Institute of Strategic Studies…”

  6. Turkey extends anti-terror campaign in east

    “Turkey has extended its fight against terrorists as the new phase of a domestic counter-terrorism operation has been launched in the country’s east, the Interior Ministry said on Jan. 20.

    The anti-terror campaign named Operation Eren-2 is underway in the Lice region of the eastern Diyarbak?r province with 116 teams including over 2,000 personnel from the gendarmerie, police, and village guards.

    On Jan. 11, Turkey launched Operation Eren in the Tendurek region of the eastern A?r? and Van provinces to target terrorists there.

    The operation was named after Eren Bülbül, a 15-year-old martyred by the terrorist PKK on Aug. 11, 2017.

    The new push aims to remove PKK/KCK terrorists completely from the country’s agenda and to neutralize the terrorists in the region, the ministry added.

    Turkey conducted Operations Kapan and Y?ld?r?m in 2020 with the aim of eliminating the separatist terrorist organization, and exterminate the terrorists present in the region.

    In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU – has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants.”

  7. Mozambique: UN worried over humanitarian crisis, unrest

    “The UN on Wednesday expressed deep concern over the worsening humanitarian crisis triggered by escalating violence in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province where thousands of people were forced to flee their homes.

    “Escalating conflict and a deteriorating humanitarian situation in Cabo Delgado has left communities completely reliant on humanitarian assistance,” read a joint statement on Mozambique issued by the United Nations Regional Directors for East and Southern Africa.

    The UN’s senior officials cited the Mozambique’s government figures, indicating that attacks by non-state groups have forced over 565,000 people to flee their villages, abandoning their crops and livelihoods.

    “The growing insecurity and poor infrastructure have meant that reaching out to people in need has become harder and coupled with the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, the crisis has become even more complex,” the UN officials said.

    They stressed the urgent need to expand protection of people, providing food, health, and nutrition programs for vulnerable children and women, according to the statement…”

  8. Italian foreign fighter arrested by Turkish authorities

    “A 24-year Italian man who allegedly fought with Al-Qaeda-linked terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq was recently arrested by the Turkish authorities, sources said on Wednesday.

    The man moved to the Middle East in 2014 and an international arrest warrant was put out for him in 2017.

    He was arrested after being tracked down in the Syrian city of Idlib thanks to cooperation between the Turkish and Italian authorities.

    Once tracked down, he asked to hand himself in to the Italian authorities.

    As a result he was transferred to the Turkish province of Hatay, where he was handed over to the Italian authorities.

    He is already in jail in Italy.

    The man’s Turkish wife and three children have stayed in Turkey, the sources said. (ANSA).”

  9. Afghan sentenced to life in prison for double murder near Austrian-Czech border

    “The Supreme Regional Court in Linz, Austria, has confirmed a life sentence for an Afghan who killed a farmer near the Czech border in the autumn of 2019. The perpetrator also stabbed a hostel worker who succumbed to his injuries a few days later, reports

    The incident took place in mid-October 2019 in the Upper Austrian village of Wullowitz, located just across the border with the Czech Republic. An Afghan named Jamal stabbed an employee of the local hostel for asylum seekers.

    “According to the prosecutor, he went straight to the man and stabbed him in the chest with sheer force,” the news portal described the incident.

    The attacker, who lived in nearby Leopoldschlag, then rode his bike to a nearby farm, where he killed a 63-year-old farmer, stole a car, and drove away. The Austrian police then announced an extensive search at the Czech border. Their Czech colleagues helped them as it was not clear whether the man had crossed the Czech border. Police eventually caught the attacker near Linz. A few days later, the stabbed hostel worker died in a hospital.

    According to ORF, the defendant’s lawyer argued, among other things, that the attacker was not of proper mental health. The defendant, who failed to appeal the original verdict, expressed regret in court.

    “He apologized to the victims’ relatives several times and expressed remorse,” pointed out.

    But that did not change the court’s decision. In the end, the man received a life sentence for two murders. The hostel was then closed by the local Red Cross.

    “Originally, we planned to close the facility at the beginning of 2020. Given what happened, we decided to close the facility immediately. We will move the foreigners to other available accommodations. We are sorry for what happened. So far, we have not registered any problems here,” said Christian Hartl of the Upper Austrian Red Cross shortly after the incident to the MF DNES daily.

    Locals then told the daily that Jamal had changed in the weeks and months before the disaster. According to some, he was dissatisfied and behaved aggressively.

    Much of Austria’s prison population is made up of foreigners, representing over 50 percent of all inmates, while nearly one in four residents in Austria is of foreign origin, raising significant integration problems within the country. “

  10. In new precedent, French court allows Bangladeshi migrant to remain in France as ‘climate refugee’

    “The Court of Appeal of the French city of Bordeaux last month granted “sick foreigner” status to a Bangladeshi man suffering from a respiratory illness, taking into account air pollution from his country of origin, thereby potentially having created legal precedent for a new category of refugees, French portal InfoMigrants writes.

    After having lived in France for nearly a decade, Sheel, a Bangladeshi man suffering from a difficult respiratory disease, obtained his first residence permit for a sick foreigner in 2015. The unremarkable forty-something migrant living in Toulouse, in the Haute-Garonne, and suffers a severe form of asthma requiring heavy treatment as well as a strong sleep apnea forcing him to sleep under respiratory assistance every night.

    Despite his fragile state of health, he was refused a renewal of his residence permit in June 2019 the and risked deportation. The French prefecture involved in his case stated that the applicant could obtain appropriate treatment in Bangladesh. His request for family reunification to find his wife back home was also rejected.

    A year later, the administrative court canceled the prefect’s decree, arguing that while medicine to relieve asthma attacks are indeed available in Bangladesh, the basic treatment does not exist. But the prefect did not stop there and brought the case before the Bordeaux Court of Appeal which confirmed, on Dec. 18, the first judgment and even added a criterion unprecedented in France: that air pollution in Bangladesh has a bearing on whether a migrant can remain in France.

    “This is the first time in France that a court has taken into account the climatic criterion to justify that a person should benefit from the status of sick foreigner,” said Ludovic Rivière, lawyer at the Toulouse bar and representative of Sheel. “Because it is obvious that the environmental conditions in Bangladesh today allow us to say that it would be illusory for my client to be treated there, it would amount to sending him to certain death.”

    “In the same way that we do not send an AIDS patient to a country where he cannot be treated or a death row inmate to a state which practices capital punishment, Sheel cannot be deported to Bangladesh. But we are still far from setting a precedent and creating a real status of climate refugee in France,” Rivière said, who now hopes that the public authorities and the courts will consider the climate issue more systematically.

    “The candidates for climate exile will be more and more numerous, the politicians will have no other choice but to take an interest in it quickly.”

    The threat of left-wing parties using climate change as a pretext to accept millions of migrants into Europe is a real one. For example, the German Green Party released a proposal to accept 150 million climate refugees to live in Germany, which would amount to nearly double Germany’s current population.”

  11. Poll: Nearly 3/4 of voters think America is on the wrong track – Liberty Unyielding
    Daily Caller News Foundation
    2-3 minutes

    Poll: Nearly 3/4 of voters think America is on the wrong track

    Joe Biden, Xi Jinping

    By Bradley Stein

    A majority of Americans say they feel the country is headed in the wrong direction ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, a new poll shows.

    The NBC News poll showed that 73% of respondents indicated the country is on the wrong track, while only a mere 21% of Americans approve of the country’s direction.

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