If we take the recent events in Egypt and Libya, the current administration's response, and the sycophantic media elements that refuse to hold this administration accountable, I'm not convinced that we aren't talking about an election-year Jump-the-SharkTM moment here.
Why do I say this? It's partially just gut feeling, to be honest. When I first read the State Department's statement regarding the protests in Egypt, I was shocked. In fact, I had to reread the statement several times before my brain would believe/accept what my eyes were saying. Did they really just condemn those who choose to exercise their right of free speech in this country? WTF is going on here? Are we seriously apologizing and making excuses for our American values because a bunch of religious zealots don't like what was said about them? Is this really happening right now? My gut tells me that this latest display of incompetency on behalf of this administration (and that's being nice given that one could argue this is simple anti-Americanism) is so beyond the pale that it cannot be ignored. Not by me. Not by anyone who loves this country and the values it stands for. The emperor with no clothes has been exposed for all to see and there's not enough spin to put the clothes back on no matter where it's coming from.
The other part of me says this is a Jump-the-SharkTM moment because I spoke to a close friend who spent 12 years on the Hill working for various members of Republican leadership and for the first time since the election kicked into gear, he feels like Obama's goose is finally cooked and Mitt is going to win the election.
MSNBC weasels masquerading as a news network. They all ought to be cleaning out some pig sty somewhere instead spooning out that garbage they pass off as news to willing Obama worshippers. The fact that we have free speech allows MSNBC to hawk this tripe.
Posted by an old HS classmate of mine and seconded by another:
"What is wrong with people. The way the world is today,why would you make a movie degrading the muslim religion? Now our people are dying because of this idiot! And now they have another reason to hate the US. Just gives them another excuse to attack."
The Afghan government on Wednesday banned YouTube from the country for the first time to prevent people from watching an anti-Islam film, The Innocence of Muslims, which sparked a riot in Libya that killed the US ambassador and three other American diplomats.
"Following instructions by the ministry of information and culture, the ministry of communication has ordered all service providers to block YouTube access," communications ministry official Aimal Marjan told AFP.
He said the block had been ordered "until YouTube removes this abusive film".
The Afghan presidency earlier condemned the film as "inhuman and insulting," calling for it not to be broadcast.
It was made by an Israeli-American and describes Islam as a "cancer" and depicts the Prophet Mohammed sleeping with women, the Wall Street Journal reported.
It has been promoted by controversial US pastor Terry Jones, who has drawn protests for burning the Koran and vehemently opposing the construction of a mosque near Ground Zero in New York.
[An Nahar] Somalia's Islamists on Tuesday dismissed as illegitimate the vote which saw outsider Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud elected president.
"The process in which Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud was chosen was run by the enemies of Somalia," Sheikh Ali Mohamoud Rage, front man of the al-Qaeda-linked Shebab, told Agence La Belle France Presse.
"Nothing personal, but the whole process is like an enemy project," he said.
Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud, a 56-year-old university lecturer with ties to the Somali branch of the Moslem Brüderbund, Al-Islah ("Reform" in Arabic), unexpectedly defeated incumbent Sharif Sheikh Ahmed in a run-off on Monday.
The president was elected by newly-designated politicians as part of a U.N.-backed process to end a transitional period and strengthen institutions in a nation which has not had an effective central government in two decades.
The vote took place under tight security in the capital Mogadishu and comes amid intensifying regional military efforts to flush out the Shebab from their remaining strongholds.
"We will only recognize a process run by Somalis and not manipulated by Æthiopia, Burundi, Kenya, Uganda, Djibouti and the west," Rage said, listing the countries that have troops fighting the Shebab in Somalia.
"Hassan is operating under a constitution drafted by the enemies of Somalia, who have a nefarious geopolitical agenda, especially neighboring countries," he said.
Outgoing president Sharif Sheikh Ahmed was a top leader in the Islamist movement that gave birth to the Shebab until he joined the U.N.-brokered political process and won the presidential vote in January 2009.
The Shebab have since accused him of being a Western puppet supporting the country's invasion by "Christian crusaders" and have repeatedly targeted his administration in suicide kabooms.
Clinton and Obama are shocked, shocked I tell ya. How could the radical Muslim fluffy bunnies that they helped to victory, turn out to be such ingrates?
US President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have condemned the deadly attack on the US consulte in Libya, which killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other embassy workers.
The two leaders said that America liberated the country so it could form a new democracy.
"It's especially tragic that Chris Stevens died in Benghazi because it's a city he helped to save. At the height of the Libyan revolution, Chris led our diplomatic post in Benghazi...he built partnerships with Libyan revolutionaries and helped them as they planned to build a new Libya," Obama said in a statement.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also firmly denounced the attack: "How could this happen? How could this happen in a country we helped liberate, in a city we helped save from destruction?"
But some believe the US shouldn't be so surprised by the violence.
It's naive to for the US to believe it can have normal diplomatic relations in Libya, which is unstable because of the 2011 NATO-led intervention, Patrick Henningsen, geopolitical analyst for current affairs website UK Column Patrick said in an interview with RT.
Libya is divided because of NATO. The chaos of the intervention has given rise to warlords, militias, and raided weapon stocks that were formerly secured by the Gaddafi government, he said.
Henningsen argues that the violent assault on the US consulate is simply blowback against Washington and London's aggressive foreign policy.
CAIRO: Egyptian authorities ordered the arrest of ousted strongman Hosni Mubarak's last prime minister Ahmed Shafiq on Tuesday on suspicion of corruption, judicial sources said. Shafiq, who has been living abroad in the United Arab Emirates since narrowly losing the first post-Mubarak elections to Islamist incumbent Muhammad Mursi in June, ...no fool he...
has been barred from travel using his Egyptian passport since last month.
He faces corruption charges in a case connected to that of Mubarak's long untouchable sons Alaa and Gamal.
A former air force chief and civil aviation minister, Shafiq was named premier in the last days of Mubarak's presidency before the veteran strongman's overthrow in February last year. He won 48.3 percent of the vote in a second-round presidential election runoff against Mursi in June.
Last month, he slammed the travel restrictions imposed on him as "political." He said he would have no hesitation about flying home if he deemed it necessary. You might want to rethink that...
The case involving Shafiq relates to the sale of a vast swathe of land below market price to an association of military pilots. The accusations emerged during his presidential election campaign.
Alaa and Gamal were acquitted in a trial in which their father Mubarak was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of protesters during the uprising that toppled him. The two remain in custody, however, awaiting trial on other corruption charges. And because it pleases the current rulers...
See also DEFENCE.PK/FORUMS > OBAMA: EGYPT NEITHER AN "ALLY" NOR "ENEMY".
Egypt wants Obama to forget about overthrowing the Assad regime in Syria - OTOH, iff the anti-Assad Islamists do succeed in doing so, "Rising Egypt" may see serious = "aggressive" MilPol competition from its former isolationist/
neutralist-centric Arab League ally, + exclusive of Iran, Turkey, etc.
A screening of a controversial documentary on the history of Islam has been cancelled on security advice after its presenter was threatened.
Historian Tom Holland's Channel 4 film Islam: The Untold Story sparked more than 1,000 complaints when it was broadcast.
Holland was threatened online with a torrent of abusive messages on Twitter.
A Channel 4 spokeswoman said: "Having taken security advice, we have reluctantly cancelled a planned screening of the programme Islam: The Untold Story. We remain extremely proud of the film which is still available to view on 4oD."
The private screening was due to take place at the broadcaster's London headquarters on Thursday before an audience of historians and "opinion formers".
The documentary is due to be repeated late on Thursday night and can be viewed online.
The investigation into the origins of the religion claimed that there is little written contemporary evidence about the prophet Mohammed.
It examined claims that rather than Islam's doctrine emerging fully-formed in a single text, the religion instead developed gradually over many years with the expansion of Arabic empires.
Holland, the writer of best-sellers Rubicon and Persian Fire, said that Islam is "a legitimate subject of historical inquiry".
The Islamic Education and Research Academy (IERA) accused him of making "baseless assumptions" and engaging in "selective scholarship".
Iranian state media suggested the broadcast was an "insult" to Islam.
One message sent to Holland read: "You might be a target in the streets. You may recruit some bodyguards, for your own safety."
Writing on the Channel 4 website after complaints to both the channel and watchdog Ofcom, Holland said: "We were of course aware when making the programme that we were touching deeply held sensitivities and went to every effort to ensure that the moral and civilizational power of Islam was acknowledged in our film, and the perspective of Moslem faith represented, both in the persons of ordinary Bedouin in the desert, and one of the greatest modern scholars of Islam, Seyyed Hossein Nasr."
Holland was defended by Dr Jenny Taylor who runs the charity Lapido Media which encourages better understanding and reporting of religion in the media.
"He's shown all of us that Islam is interesting enough to be taken seriously. He's refused to stick his head in the sand and play blind about the problems or internal tensions that all thinking Moslems know are there," she said.
"He's not trammelled the sacred heart of an ancient mystery but found hints of an even greater and more awesome reality that is tantalisingly beyond our grasp at the moment, but could just be the key to a shared past and shared future."
You cant reason/debate with muslims.They are ignorant and only listen to their Mullahs/Imans.Last time i was in the US i had a debate with a muslim who worked in the hotel about why muslim women dont work.When i pointed out that Mo's first wife was a businesswomen he could not give me an answer and said he would need to speak to his iman about this shocking news.
ps.Could you imagine a film like Life of Brian being made about MO?
Posted by: Paul D ||
ANKARA: Turkey yesterday said it won't extradite Iraq's fugitive Vice President Tareq Al-Hashemi, who has been convicted of murder and sentenced to death in absentia by an Iraqi court.
"We will host Hashemi in our country as long as he wants to remain in Turkey. We will not hand him over," Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan told a news conference in Ankara.
Hashemi, who is sheltering in Turkey, was Sunday sentenced to death for the murders of a lawyer and a brigadier general, after being accused of running a death squad. The Sunni Arab politician has charged that his trial was politically motivated and ruled out returning to Iraq until his security is guaranteed and he is assured of a fair trial.
Erdogan said Hashemi, an Iraqi official who lost many family members during the conflict in Iraq, could not possibly have been involved in the crimes that he has been found guilty of. "No, no, certainly not!"
Speaking in Ankara on Monday, Hashemi branded the death sentence "the final phase of the theatrical campaign" carried out by his rival, Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki, and "his politicized judiciary." Worked pretty well, too: Maliki is in charge and you're a refugee...
[Dawn] The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa ... formerly NWFP, still Terrorism Central... Assembly was informed on Monday that Frontier Constabulary didn't conduct inquiry into the last year bombing outside its headquarters in Shabqadar Fort that killed over 80 newly passed-out recruits.
In a written reply to a question, the provincial home and tribal affairs department told the House that the relevant quarters were provided prior information about suicide kabooms on cop shoppe, FC Fort or any other government installations in
Shabqadar area but no security cover was demanded by FC on the 'fateful day.'
Two jacket wallahs targeted FC recruits outside the training center at Shabqadar on May 13, 2011 when personnel were leaving to home after passing out parade. Over 80 recruits were killed and more than hundred maimed in the attack.
The house referred question of treasury member Saqibullah Khan Chamkani to the Standing Committee on Home and Tribal Affairs Department to conduct inquiry into the sheer negligence by the FC authorities for not taking proper security measures that led to the killing of a large number of personnel.
The committee headed by opposition MPA Shah Hussain was tasked with ascertaining why no internal inquiry was conducted in the incident and pointing out negligence on part of the relevant officials.
"On March 2, 2011, the special branch issued a report indicating that three suicide bombers in school uniform had been sent to target cop shoppes, FC Fort Shabqadar or any other government installation," the home department said in its reply.It said another source regarding the dispatch of two suicide bomber to Charsadda district from Mohmand Agency ... Named for the Mohmand clan of the Sarban Pahstuns, a truculent, quarrelsome lot. In Pakistain, the Mohmands infest their eponymous Agency, metastasizing as far as the plains of Peshawar, Charsadda, and Mardan. Mohmands are also scattered throughout Pakistan in urban areas including Karachi, Lahore, and Quetta. In Afghanistan they are mainly found in Nangarhar and Kunar... were also sent to the relevant quarters and asked to enhance security in the area.
The department said at the request of Commandant FC, full security was given by the Charsadda police on the occasion of passing out parade of the recruits but on the other day, authorities did not demand security when personnel were leaving the centre.MPA Saqibullah Khan said dozens of precious lives were lost on the day, but no inquiry had been conducted so far. He asked the government to conduct a high-level inquiry to fix responsibility for negligence.
MPA Israrullah Khan Gandapur also supported the mover.
Two more questions regarding alleged anomalies in the purchase of 1322 (9mm) pistols for police force and delay in departmental inquiry into gas leakage of incidents at central police office Beautiful Downtown Peshawar ...capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province), administrative and economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. Peshawar is situated near the eastern end of the Khyber Pass, convenient to the Pak-Afghan border. Peshawar has evolved into one of Pakistan's most ethnically and linguistically diverse cities, which means lots of gunfire. that killed six employees were also referred to the relevant committee.
During question-answer session, law minister Arshad Abdullah told the house that the government would not restore 756 coppers, who deserted job due to fear of Orcs and similar vermin or any other reason.
According to the official list provided, 260 coppers in Hangu, 85 in Bannu, 271 in Swat, 24 in Shangla, 96 in Lower Dir, one in Upper Dir and 19 in Buner Districts have left job over the last couple of years.
The assembly passed the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Borstal Institutions Bill, 2012 after incorporating an amendment of opposition MPA Mufti Kifayatullah in Clause 13 and Sub Clause 3.
MPA Shazia Tehmas Khan of PPP withdrew her amendments.
Under the law, borstals will be established across the province to provide facilities of basic education and training for mental, moral and psychological development of inmates and make proper arrangements for their health, hygiene, medical care and accommodation.
The House also passed the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Universities (Amendment) Bill, 2012 and the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Disabled Persons (Employment and Rehabilitation) (Amendments) Bill, 2012, and a bill restoring around 5,000 government employees in the province.
[Dawn] The prolonged ban on cellular phone service and occurrence of technical fault in landlines have forced the dwellers of Kurram Agency ...home of an intricately interconnected web of poverty, ignorance, and religious fanaticism, where the laws of cause and effect are assumed to be suspended, conveniently located adjacent to Tora Bora... to switch over to Afghan cellular service.
The tribal people of Kurram have no other option but to use Afghan cellular companies' service as the government has imposed ban on services of Pak cellular phone companies since 2008. Presently MTN, Etisalat are operating in Afghanistan and its signals are active in Kurram Agency. "Users pay five times more to Afghan companies as compared to Pak cellular companies," an official told Dawn on condition of anonymity.
He said that owing to road construction and sabotage activities the fibre optic cable had damaged at several points. "Presently we are using DRS system, which usually develops fault," the official said.
Asif Ali, a resident of Kurram, told Dawn that the landline in his house always remains dead.
He said that they were facing difficulties in contacting their relatives. "One of my brothers is a daily wager abroad and anther is a student in Beautiful Downtown Peshawar ...capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province), administrative and economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. Peshawar is situated near the eastern end of the Khyber Pass, convenient to the Pak-Afghan border. Peshawar has evolved into one of Pakistan's most ethnically and linguistically diverse cities, which means lots of gunfire. so we have no other option but to use the service of Afghan cellular companies," he added.
Political Agent Syed Shahab Ali Shah said that cellular phone service in Kurram had banned owing to its misuse in carrying out turban activities. He assured that soon the ban would be lifted and the service would be restored to facilitate tribal people. --
[An Nahar] Paleostinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad ...Fayyad's political agenda holds that neither violence nor peaceful negotiations have brought the Paleostinians any closer to an independent state. The alternative to both, violent negotiations, doesn't seem to be working too well, either... on Tuesday announced cuts to fuel prices and VAT after more than a week of protests across the West Bank over the spiraling cost of living.
The price of fuel "will be returned to what it was in late August, starting tomorrow," Fayyad told news hounds after the weekly cabinet meeting.
"We will reduce the VAT to 15 percent, which is the minimum available to us at the moment," he added.
The measures were announced as hundreds of bureaucrats gathered in front of Fayyad's office for new protests over the cost of living, a day after a mass strike by transport workers that paralyzed much of the West Bank.
Fayyad said government workers would be paid part of their overdue August salaries on Wednesday, and would receive the rest later in the week.
"There will be additional cuts made to the expenses of ministries and government institutions with the exception the ministries of health, education and social affairs," he said.
There would also be cuts to the salaries and expenses of high-ranking officials and ministers, he said.
"We will not commit to any new ministerial expenses for travel, rent, transportation or fuel until we get through this financial crisis."
Paleostinians in the West Bank have been demonstrating for the past 10 days over the cost of living, and particularly the price of fuel, which has risen from six to eight shekels (from $1.50 to $2.00/1.18 to 1.57 euros) per liter in the past two months alone.
Much public anger has focused on Fayyad and the policies of his government, with about 1,500 demonstrators joining Tuesday's sit-in outside his office.
"Our demand is for an immediate reduction in the cost of fuel," union head Bassam Zakarneh told demonstrators.
"We are not calling for the departure of Fayyad himself, but for the end of his economic policy," he added, calling for a 30 percent reduction in fuel prices.
Paleostinian President the ineffectual Mahmoud Abbas ... a graduate of the prestigious unaccredited Patrice Lumumba University in Moscow with a doctorate in Holocaust Denial... 's West Bank government has struggled to respond to public frustration, although it has approached Israel for talks to amend the Gay Paree Protocol, a key accord which has a direct impact on local taxes and fuel prices.
The 1994 agreement governs Israel's transfers of tax revenue to the Paleostinians and sets limits on the difference in fuel prices applicable in Israel and the Paleostinian territories.
It sets Paleostinian VAT at between 15 and 16 percent, and puts the maximum difference between Paleostinian and Israeli fuel prices at 15 percent.
Last year, Abbas pledged to change the agreement which he branded as "unfair."
The Paleostinian Authority is facing its worst economic crisis in years, largely because of a failure by donors to deliver pledged funds.
The crisis has left the Ramallah administration unable to fully pay tens of thousands of government workers.
DUBAI- Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has accused his country's enemies of enacting a sinister plan to create a drought by somehow destroying the rain clouds before they reach Iran, several Iranian websites reported on Tuesday.
Well-known for his anti-American and anti-Israeli rhetoric, Ahmadinejad has made similar remarks before and last year accused the West of devising a plot to cause drought in the Islamic republic.
"The enemy destroys the clouds that are headed towards our country and this is a war Iran will win," Ahmadinejad said on Monday, according to several websites including the BBC's Persian-language site and www.snn.ir.
Iran has one of the world's driest climates and officials have warned that a severe lack of rainfall in parts of the country has created drought-like conditions.
Ahmadinejad has courted controversy in the past, not least by denying that the Nazi Holocaust--in which six million Jews were killed--ever happened, a stance that drew furious criticism from politicians across the globe.
The Iranian authorities have repeatedly accused the West of hatching plots to undermine Islamic leadership.
Iran is also at odds with the United States and its allies over its disputed nuclear program which the West fears is aimed at developing nuclear weapons. Tehran denies its program has any military dimension.
This is very probable, spray a small ammount of 03 into the atmosphere and it will rain (the Russians did the same with Cherynobyl before it hit Moscow) If any of you have the time it would be worth looking at weather patterns of the neighbouring Mediterrean countries.
I know this sounds excentric, but it is possible to make it rain the heavens. If you find data concluding that it rains before Iran then it would be worth taking a look at flight plans and comparing the data.
[An Nahar] Diplomats in Iran enjoy the "highest level" of security, the foreign ministry front man said on Tuesday in rejection of the main reason Canada gave for abruptly closing its Tehran embassy and evacuating staff.
"We have provided the best conditions for all the diplomats. Security in our country is at its highest level compared to the rest of the regional countries," front man Ramin Mehmanparast told news hounds in a weekly briefing.
He rejected Canada's explanation that it had closed its Tehran embassy because "the Iranian regime has shown blatant disregard" for the safety of foreign diplomats on its soil.
Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird said in a statement on Friday: "Our diplomats serve Canada as civilians, and their safety is our number one priority."
Canadian officials pointed to the storming and ransacking of Britannia's embassy in Tehran during a state-organized demonstration on November 29 last year. As a result of that violation, London closed the mission, evacuated its shaken diplomats and ordered Iran's diplomats out of Britannia.
Western countries are sensitive about the safety of their diplomats in Iran ever since the U.S. embassy hostage crisis in Tehran in the wake of Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution, in which 52 U.S. diplomats were held for over a year.
Increased speculation of imminent Israeli air strikes on Iranian nuclear facilities have added to their concerns of retaliation against Western targets in Tehran.
Canadian officials said their decision on the embassy was not based on any foreknowledge of such an attack, but they have shied away from saying what specific threat prompted the move.
Other Western embassies in Tehran said they had no plans to follow Canada's decision.
Mehmanparast said the high security Iran deployed around an August 30-31 summit of non-aligned states held in Tehran "shows that such issues that some countries and officials of Canada's beturbanned goon government have announced are inappropriate and are derived from their anger" over the summit's "success."
He attributed any doubts about the protection of foreign diplomats in Iran to "the Western media's propaganda."
[An Nahar] La Belle France has helped a number of Syrian military figures to desert from Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad Before going into the family business Pencilneck was an eye doctor... 's embattled regime, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Tuesday.
"We have contributed to a certain number of desertion operations," he told a parliamentary commission, without giving any further details.
The comment came a day after defected general Manaf Tlass said French secret agents helped him escape in July from Syria, where he had been a member of Assad's inner circle.
A general in the elite Republican Guard charged with protecting the regime, Tlass is the son of former defense minister Mustafa Tlass, a close friend of Assad's late father and predecessor, Hafez Assad.
La Belle France is among the Western nations leading calls for Assad to step down in a bid to end the bloody conflict in Syria that erupted in March last year.
French President Francois Hollande ...the Socialist president of La Belle France, and a fine job he's doing of it... has said that if the Syrian opposition forms a "provisional, inclusive and representative" government, his own government will formally recognize it.