[Tolo News] Afghanistan's parliament approved Saturday a strategic pact between Afghanistan and the US, clearing the way for a US presence in the country.
The agreement is for at least a decade after the foreign combat troops will leave Afghanistan after 2014.
Nearly 200 MPs were present at today's parliamentary sitting and only five voted was against the pact.
The pact was signed by US President Barack Obama B.O.... and Afghanistan's Caped PresidentHamid Maybe I'll join the Taliban Karzai ... A former Baltimore restaurateur, now 12th and current President of Afghanistan, displacing the legitimate president Rabbani in December 2004. He was installed as the dominant political figure after the removal of the Taliban regime in late 2001 in a vain attempt to put a Pashtun face on the successor state to the Taliban. After the 2004 presidential election, he was declared president regardless of what the actual vote count was. He won a second, even more dubious, five-year-term after the 2009 presidential election. His grip on reality has been slipping steadily since around 2007, probably from heavy drug use... in Kabul on May 2, but requires the approval of Afghanistan's parliament and its US counterpart to be enacted.
[Iran Press TV] Afghan protesters have held an anti-US demonstration in the central province of Wardak, demanding the withdrawal of foreign troops from the country.
On Saturday, protesters shouted slogans against the United States and called for an end to the country's decade-long military presence in Afghanistan
The angry demonstrators say the US-led foreign forces have set fire to a drugstore and desecrated the Holy Koran.
Meanwhile, ...back at the secret hideout, Scarface Al sneeringly put his proposition to little Nell... Afghanistan's parliament has approved a recently signed security pact between Kabul and Washington, which extends the US presence in the war-torn country to another decade beyond 2014.
Critics have condemned the agreement as a violation of Afghanistan's illusory sovereignty, demanding all foreign troops leave their country by the end of 2014.
Wardak was the site of the Chinook loss last year that killed so many SEALs. I hope its residents enjoy the remainder of the 7th century.
The Romans would have deputized their local allies to drive the Pashtuns out of Afghanistan. Fortunately for them, we're not Romans. Of course, if we were Romans, the Pashtuns might be a little more deferential.
[Tolo News] Afghan commentators said that the 33-year jail term for the Pak doctor who worked with the US to track down the late Osama bin Laden ... who is no longer with us, and won't be again... is indicative of Pakistain's complicity with terrorism.
Shakil Afridi was instrumental in helping the US Central Intelligence Agency verify the Al Qaeda leader's identity and residence in Pakistain's Abbottabad ... A pleasant city located only 30 convenient miles from Islamabad. The city is noted for its nice weather and good schools. It is the site of Pakistain's military academy, which was within comfortable walking distance of the residence of the late Osama bin Laden.... by launching a fake vaccination program.
He was tossed in the slammer Don't shoot, coppers! I'm comin' out! in Pakistain last year and sentenced by a tribal court last week to 33 years jail for treason.
Afghan analysts hailed the sentencing as proof of the support Pakistain lends to terrorism.
"With this action, Pakistain proved that it supports global and regional terrorism, and it shows that regional spy agencies still have strong ties to myrmidons," Kabul University law professor Nasrullah Stanikzai told TOLOnews.
Afghan military expert General Noorulhq Olomi believes that the Pakistain government is trying to redeem its own intelligence agency in the eyes of its people by taking this action.
"Pakistain is trying to rescue the ISI from its people's criticism for protecting Osama bin Laden," he said.
"But by committing national treason, he [Afridi] rescued the world from terrorism."
Bin Laden was killed in a US special operation at the Garrison Abbottabad near the Pak capital Islamabad last year.
The attack was massively criticised by Pakistain officials and its parliament, with diplomatic relations between it and the US hitting new lows since the start of US' "war on terror".
The Moslem Brüderbund may seek to modify, but will not destroy, Egypt's 33-year-old peace treaty with Israel, former US President Jimmy Carter ... the worst president ever. Maybe the second worst. The votes aren't all in yet... said on Saturday.
How would he know what the Muslim Brotherhood is going to do?
Carter, 87, was speaking after initial vote tallies put the Brotherhood's candidate ahead in the first round of Egypt's presidential election, which his Carter Center helped monitor.
[Daily Nation (Kenya)] Algerian Islamists have disrupted the first session of Algeria's new parliament by waving placards condemning alleged fraud in the recent elections before walking out of the chamber.
The 49 members of the three-party Green Algeria Alliance (AVV), a moderate Islamist coalition, staged their protest immediately after the roll-call of the newly-elected deputies.
It was not clear if they would return for the resumption of proceedings later in the day, when the 462-seat house dominated by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika's ... 10th president of Algeria. He was elected in 1999 and is currently on his third term, which is probably why Algerians are ready to dump him... ruling National Liberation Front (FLN) was to elect its new speaker.
The AVV, which had confidently predicted victory in the May 10 elections, alleged fraud after it won fewer than 50 seats.
On Thursday the constitutional council accepted only 13 of the 167 appeals filed after the polls, yielding minor changes in the parliament's breakdown of seats.
The FLN saw its tally reduced to 208 from 221, while Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia's National Rally for Democracy lost two seats but remains in second spot with 68 politicians, forming a comfortable presidential majority with the FLN.
The AVV was deprived of one seat but allocated another three, making its total 49, while the Socialist Forces Front, Algeria's oldest opposition party that returned to the electoral fray this year after a 10-year boycott, saw its tally rise to 27.
The main beneficiary of the constitutional council's redistribution was the Workers Party, which was granted seven more seats and with 26, attained the legal threshold to form a parliamentary group.
Opposition parties and other critics argue that the results announced by the interior ministry and confirmed by the constitutional council have little correlation with reality.
As the number of total homicides in Mexico has been slowly dropping, the sensational violence spikes higher, creating an atmosphere of instability that makes Mexicans and American visitors fear travel in wide stretches of country that even Mexican military leaders concede are not completely under state control.
[Iran Press TV] On Friday, Republican Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed a bill aimed at keeping state courts and agencies from using Islamic or other non-U.S. laws when making decisions, drawing criticism from a national Moslem group.
"The Kansas bill is anti-Islamic and unconstitutional," according to Nadhira Al-Khalili, a CAIR legal counsel in Washington D.C. who spoke to Press TV's U.S. Desk in an interview on Saturday.
Al-Khalili said, "We stated that the Kansas anti-Moslem bill invites a legal challenge because the bill is unconstitutional and unfortunately, the politician of Kansas voted and it was singed into law, voted for the bill, it's now signed into law. And so the next step in this is to have someone challenge the bill in court because only a court at this point can declare the law unconstitutional and strike the law from the book."
My proposal for the 28th article of amendment to the Constitution:
The judicial power of the courts established under Article III of this Constitution shall not be guided by any precedent or opinion expressed by any foreign court or tribunal; except as shall be agreed to by the United States under international treaty.
Posted by: Steve White ||
That would stop all this nonsense cold. No longer would any judge or justice root around in foreign court writings, Islamic law (or any other religious law), etc looking for support. It's in the Constitution or English common law, or it isn't law.
Posted by: Steve White ||
I like the amendment. But it wouldn't stop all this nonsense cold, because it's creeping, insidious, and already so much of the legal culture, from law school onward. The public debate would be fun, though, as it would force lefties to openly declare their allegiances.
[An Nahar] The U.S. government is easing the airport screening process for travelers 75 and older, beginning to roll out new rules just in time for the long Memorial Day holiday weekend, an official said Friday.
The U.S. government is easing the airport screening process for travelers 75 and older
From this weekend the elderly will no longer have to doff shoes, belts and jackets as they pass through security checkpoints at New York's three major airports: John F. Kennedy International, La Guardia, and Newark Liberty.
The Transportation Security Administration has said rollout of the new measures to the rest of the country could follow.
"Seventy-five-plus is in the process of being rolled out and customers will see it over the course of the summer and beyond," said David Castelveter, chief front man of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).
Castelveter said he did not have a precise timetable, but the New York rollout was expected to occur through the upcoming three-day weekend that unofficially kicks off the U.S. summer vacation season.
The 75-plus measures have already been successfully tested in the Chicago, Denver, Orlando and Portland airports.
Last September the TSA decided to allow children 12 and under to pass through screening without removing their shoes.
Shoes and belts? The ONE time I've flown since 9/11 (a few months ago), they had me take off the silk scarf looped around my collar and dangling down the front of my blouse. But only for trip down, not the trip back.
Yeesh. These clowns are worthless.
Glenn Reynolds has a better idea: issue a gun to every frequent flyer.
Posted by: Barbara ||
I fly a bunch, which means that I've had enough contact with the TSA to establish a common-law marriage. Some of their folks show very good sense in terms of managing the process; others are little tyrants; some are rude; some are extremely courteous. So I don't blame the TSA agents personally. But the whole process is a badly conceived, infuriating waste of time and tax dollars. And one of these days the TSA is going to push a crowd of travelers just one inch too far, with interesting results.
Before every flight have the passengers pass a simplified version of the current screening process. A walk-through metal detector is a good idea, and screening bags is easy and can be efficient.
As you do this, profile.
Not for terrorists.
For about a half-dozen people who you think are serious, sober, sensible and careful. Find them, approach them and ask them to volunteer.
You issue each volunteer a mahogany police baton*. Their job is simple: if any miscreant tries to set his shoe or underwear afire during the flight, they are to converge on said miscreant and beat him senseless.
We issue police batons because we really, really don't want firearms on a plane. We issue a half-dozen: giving out one means one person has too much power; giving out a dozen or more means potential mob trouble. Six is about right.
The volunteers get a voucher that lets them fly at a reduced price in the future. They get indemnity if they do the job properly, and they are educated that they will be prosecuted if they grossly mis-use their power.
We don't need the current security theater. We simply need to remember that we Americans are a pack, not a herd.
* yes, yes, a number seven.
Posted by: Steve White ||
Our Rantburg Marine captain one related that he started carrying a pocketful of change when he flew after 9/11. Upon settling in his seat, he would take off a sock, fill it with his coins, tie it off with a shoe lace, and set it on his tray against need during flight. Instant cosh.
I most sincerely hope never to be tapped for such a responsibility, but I'll willingly throw whatever is at hand in the miscreant's diction until the batoniers arrive on station.
the trick is to not fight fair: aim for the windpipe, eyes, whatever you have at hand. It's a bar fight for your life (and others)
Posted by: Frank G ||
The biggest increase in security since 9/11 has been the securing of the cockpit doors and the change in attitude of passengers. No longer can a hijacker break in and take over the cockpit. And passengers will no longer sit passively and wait for the hostage negotiators to take over. They will act to attack and disable the hijackers.
Pretty much every thing else has been theater on the part of the TSA.
Posted by: Rambler in Virginia ||
The baton idea is excellent. And far too reasonable to ever be implemented. Which is why I LOVE the sock full of coins.
Frank: no worries. Women generally don't receive an education in fisticuffs, so "fighting fair" never really occurs to us.
[Dawn] Jamaat-e Islami (JI) Pakistain chief and Difa-e-Pakistain Council (DPC) central leader Syed Munawar Hasan has said that any attempt to restore supply line of NATO ...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. It's headquartered in Belgium. That sez it all.... through Pakistain would never bear fruit as the DPC would resist to such a move.
Addressing a press briefing after a meeting of the DPC leaders here Saturday, Hasan blamed the United States of wanting to destabilize Pakistain and carrying out further attacks like the one at the Salala checkpost that resulted in the deaths of 24 Pakistain soldiers. Morever, the JI chief said that the present rulers were endorsing the "wicked agenda of the genocide of Moslems" in this region.
We are ready to pay any price but would not allow the US and NATO to get reinforcement through Pakistain, he said.
He said that on May 27, the DPC would convene a grand workers convention in Bloody Karachi ...formerly the capital of Pakistain, now merely its most important port and financial center. It may be the largest city in the world, with a population of 18 million, most of whom hate each other and many of whom are armed and dangerous... while the DPC leaders would finalize their long march on June 5.
The press briefing was also addressed by Jamaat-ud-Dawa ...the front organization of Lashkar-e-Taiba... (JuD) chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed ...who would be wearing a canvas jacket with very long sleeves anyplace but Pakistain...
Hafiz Muhammad Saeed said that the long march was only postponed earlier because the leaders of the parties in DPC had decided to use that tool at the appropriate time.
Moreover, Saeed alleged that it was not only the US but also India that was interfering into Pakistain's affairs.
Pakistain is a sovereign state and would never be allowed to become an Indian market, said the JuD chief.
The Difaa-e-Pakistain Council is an alliance of several right-winged religiopolitical parties opposing the US 'war on terror' and Pakistain providing supply routes to NATO troops in Afghanistan.
The council, especially JuD leader Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, has also been a critic of Pakistain's recent granting of Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status to India.
Saeed is accused by India and the US of criminal masterminding the 2008 attacks in Mumbai. Earlier this month, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton ... sometimes described as America's Blond Eminence and at other times as Mrs. Bill, never as Another Condoleezza Rice ... blamed Pakistain of "not doing enough" against Saeed.
[Iran Press TV] The rift between Washington and Tel Aviv over Iran's nuclear issue has widened as the Israeli premier and defense minister refuse to meet with US Undersecretary of State.
On Friday, May 25, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak refused to meet with the top US negotiator on Iran in Storied Baghdad ...located along the Tigris River, founded in the 8th century, home of the Abbasid Caliphate... Wendy Sherman who had travelled to Tel Aviv to brief Israeli officials about negotiations between Iran and the P5+1--Britannia, China, La Belle France, Russia, and the United States plus Germany.
Iran and the P5+1 wrapped up their final meeting in Storied Baghdad on Thursday evening after two earlier sessions of negotiations on Thursday and Wednesday.
Sherman delivered her report to National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror and Foreign Ministry Director-General Rafi Barak instead, Debka file reported.
According to her report, no progress was achieved in Storied Baghdad as Iran refused to suspend uranium enrichment at low (3.5-5 percent) or high (20 percent) levels or shut down the Fordow nuclear plant near Qom.
Tehran and the six major world powers have agreed to hold another round of talks in Moscow on June 18-19. Another three weeks for enrichment, just what the Iranians wanted...
Iran has stressed there would be no progress until the P5+1 recognized Iran's inalienable "right" as a signatory of the Non-Proliferation Treaty to enrich uranium.
Talking big, again. It's one of those cultural thingies.
Iranian Brigadier General Hossein Salami, speaking at a memorial service for General Hassan Tehrani Moghaddam, the former chief of Iran's ballistic missile program who was killed in a December kaboom, said that "No base in the area is outside Iran's missile capabilities."
Salami further noted that Iran's surface-to-surface missiles are accurate enough "to strike any base you can imagine."
[An Nahar] A new ineffective International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report on Iran's nuclear activities is "proof" that Tehran's program is peaceful, Iran's envoy to the U.N. nuclear watchdog said.
Ali Asghar Soltanieh made the comment late Friday to Iranian state television ... and if you can't believe state television who can you believe? ... other than perhaps the Iranian ambassador to the UN...
despite the report, circulated earlier in the day, revealing that uranium traces of a higher grade than any found before had been detected.
Soltanieh gave no direct reaction to that discovery.
"The report once again proves to the international community that all Iranian nuclear activities are successfully underway and are uninterrupted, and that there is no diversion in Iran's nuclear material towards military objectives," he was quoted as saying.
The report, he said, "is more proof of the peaceful nature of Iran's nuclear activities and of our country's success in the field of nuclear technology, in particular enrichment, and its full cooperation with the agency."
The agency report said that the traces found at the Fordo site, inside a mountain bunker near Qom, were of uranium enriched to purities of 27 percent. Previously, the highest level recorded by the agency in Iran was 20 percent.
[Al Ahram] Iran has significantly stepped up its output of low-enriched uranium and total production in the last five years would be enough for at least five nuclear weapons if refined much further, a U.S. security institute said.
The Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS), a think-tank which tracks Iran's nuclear programme closely, based the analysis on data in the latest report by the U.N. ineffective International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) which was issued on Friday.
Progress in Iran's nuclear activities is closely watched by the West and Israel as it could determine how long it could take Tehran to build atomic bombs, if it decided to do so. Iran denies any plan to and says its aims are entirely peaceful.
During talks in Storied Baghdad ...located along the Tigris River, founded in the 8th century, home of the Abbasid Caliphate... this week, six world powers failed to convince Iran to scale back its uranium enrichment programme. They will meet again in Moscow next month to try to defuse a decade-old standoff that has raised fears of a new war in the Middle East that could disrupt oil supplies.
Friday's report by the ineffective International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), a Vienna-based U.N. body, showed Iran was pressing ahead with its uranium enrichment work in defiance of U.N. resolutions calling on it to suspend the activity.
[Iran Press TV] Iran's President Mahmoud Short Round Ahmadinejad says the world needs a new order based on justice, brotherhood, progress and welfare.
We should work toward the creation of a fair world order that stems from the will power of nations and one all nations and governments can play a role in establishing under fair conditions, President Ahmadinejad said in a meeting with African ambassadors to Tehran on Saturday.
The world is in need of a new order characterized by justice, brotherhood, human dignity, progress and welfare, he added.
He said that a demand for the establishment of a just world order is becoming a popular demand in the world, adding that this goal can only be achieved through collective effort.
The Iranian president said the world requires a new economic system that will protect the interests of nations as well as a new political establishment that will bring security, peace and mutual respect to all nations.
He said the economic, political and social structures in the existing world order are controlled by a small group of people who refuse to allow the world order to change and benefit other nations.
President Ahmadinejad criticized certain domineering countries for controlling the world and said all nations and governments need to be fairly and equally involved in global decision makings.
He praised Iran's relations with African countries for being based on friendship, affection, respect, human dignity and justice and called for the further expansion of Iran-Africa ties.
He said the Islamic Theocratic Republic would stand by African countries and support any measures aimed at developing bilateral ties.
for this dipsh*t, justice comes in kiloton units and MOAB penetrators only. The Iranians have been killing Americans sine Beirut and we still pretend not to notice, because Washington lack the will to deal with them in ways they understand.
[An Nahar] U.N. leader the ephemeral Ban Ki-moon ... of whom it can be said to his credit that he is not Kofi Annan... and U.N.-Arab League ...an organization of Arabic-speaking states with 22 member countries and four observers. The League tries to achieve Arab consensus on issues, which usually leaves them doing nothing but a bit of grimacing and mustache cursing... envoy Kofi Annan ...Ghanaian diplomat who served as the seventh and so far the worst Secretary-General of the UN. Annan and the UN were the co-recipients of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize for something or other that probably sounded good at the time. In December 2004, reports surfaced that Kofi's son Kojo received payments from the Swiss company Cotecna, which had won a lucrative contract under the UN Oil-for-Food Program. Kofi Annan called for an investigation to look into the allegations, which stirred up the expected cesspool but couldn't seem to come up with enough evidence to indict Kofi himself, or even Kojo... on Saturday condemned a massacre of more than 90 civilians in Syria as a "brutal" breach of international law by the government, a front man said.
Ban and Annan "condemn in the strongest possible terms the killing, confirmed by United Nations ...an organization which on balance has done more bad than good, with the good not done well and the bad done thoroughly... observers, of dozens of men, women and kiddies" at Houla, said U.N. front man Martin Nesirky.
"This appalling and brutal crime, involving indiscriminate and disproportionate use of force, is a flagrant violation of international law and of the commitments of the Syrian government to cease the use of heavy weapons in population centers and violence in all its forms.
"Those responsible for perpetrating this crime must be held to account," the U.N. secretary general and the special envoy added.
[An Nahar] The U.N. mission chief in Syria Major General Robert Mood on Saturday condemned the "brutal tragedy" in Houla, where he said 92 bodies, including those of more than 32 children, had been counted.
Mood said he condemns "in the strongest possible terms the brutal tragedy" in Houla in the central province of Homs, adding that U.N. monitors visited the area and counted 92 bodies, including "more than 32 under the age of 10."
"Those using violence for their own agendas will create more instability, more unpredictability and may lead the country to civil war," Mood told news hounds in Damascus ...The City of Jasmin is the oldest continuously-inhabited city in the world. It has not always been inhabited by the same set of fascisti... , describing the violence as "indiscriminate and disproportionate."
[An Nahar] France condemns the "massacre" by Syrian forces which reportedly killed more than 90 people in the town of Houla and calls for greater international action, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Saturday. "I am making immediate arrangements for a Friends of Syria group meeting in Paris," Fabius said in a statement in the wake of Friday's attacks on the town in a new violation of a ceasefire.
"I am making immediate arrangements for a Friends of Syria group meeting in Paris,"
Following that drink at the club, I recommend anything on the menu at....99, avenue des Champs-Elysees. The raspberry creme dessert is splendid. Parties of 5 or more (your's is probably no larger) require a res. dial 01 40 69 60 50.
You'll be returning for many more FOS condemnations, I assure you!
The West seeks to follow its imperialist policy inside Syria through military intervention, an American author and historian tells Press TV.
Webster Griffin Tarpley says the Western powers would like to follow their imperialist policy "using the people NATO ...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. A collection of multinational and multilingual and multicultural armed forces, all of differing capabilities, working toward a common goal by pulling in different directions... has on the ground (in Syria) at the moment."
He made the comments in an interview with Press TV on Saturday.
Tarpley added that those NATO "people" are supplemented by "mercenaries from La Belle France, Turkey and other countries."
"This is of course the essence of the imperialist policy. It is partition, mini-states, micro-states and failed states."
The American author also stated that the West tries to "cut a corridor, and it will not be a humanitarian corridor, it will be a terror corridor" into Syria.
The West and the opposition blame the Syrian government for the unrest that began in March 2011, but Damascus ...Capital of the last remaining Baathist regime in the world... says foreign-sponsored "terrorists" are responsible for the turmoil.
Meanwhile, ...back at the alley, Slats Chumbaloni was staring into a hole that was just .45 inch in diameter and was less than three feet from his face ... the new Syrian parliament held its first meeting on May 24, under a new constitution approved by a majority of voters in a February referendum.
Also on May 24, Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad Sonny, disguised as Fredo, trying to be Mike... said, "Syria has been able to overcome the pressures and threats it has faced for years and is able to get out of this crisis thanks to the strength of its people and commitment to unity and independence."