[Dawn] Afghanistan will work "vigorously" to seek peace with Taliban Death Eaters, Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul vowed Wednesday at the launch of new body set up to steer ties with the US.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton ... sometimes described as For a good time at 3 a.m. call Hillary and at other times as Mrs. Bill, never as Another William Jennings Bryan ... also vowed the United States would stand by Afghanistan as it seeks to emerge from decades of war, even after all US and 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... combat troops have left the country by late 2014.
"We know that difficult days lie ahead. But despite the challenges, the United States is committed to the people of Afghanistan and we have made progress together that too often is overlooked," she said.
"The United States has made an enduring commitment to Afghanistan that was forged in sacrifice," she said, adding the US has "invested a great deal in Afghanistan" pointing to the more than 2,000 US troops who have died there.
"Now as partners we look to the future," Clinton added at the launch of a new bilateral commission set up "to guide the relationship between Afghanistan and the United States, as we move to the next phase of our relationship."
[USA Today] Sensitive documents were left behind in the remains of the U.S. Consulate in Libya and some may have been stolen in the chaotic aftermath, The Washington Post reports from Benghazi.
Documents a Post news hound found scattered on the floor today included weapons collection, personnel records of Libyan security contractors, emergency evacuation procedures and the travel schedule of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, who died with three others when the Consulate was attacked and burned Sept. 11. None were marked classified, but State Department officials who were shown copies of the documents asked that they not be published.
Last month, CNN discovered a copy of Steven's personal journal and broadcast details.
3 hours ago from the BBC:FBI investigates Benghazi consulate attack in one day
The FBI has confirmed its agents were in Benghazi, Libya, to investigate last month's deadly attack on the consulate there.
A bureau spokeswoman says the team went to "all the relevant locations" in Libya's second city in one day, but did not specify what they had found.
Reuters has it a little different:
"An American team has been visiting the compound," one Libyan security source said. Another security source said: "They have been assessing the damage, collecting evidence."
The FBI team was on the ground in Benghazi for about 13 hours looking at the crime scene before leaving, two U.S. government sources said on condition of anonymity. Separately, the Pentagon said on Thursday U.S. military personnel provided support for the FBI visit to Benghazi.
"At the request of the FBI, the department provided logistic and security support to the investigation team in order to conduct work on-site in Benghazi," Pentagon spokesman George Little told reporters. Department of Defence "personnel completed that support earlier today and have departed Benghazi along with the investigation team."
In Benghazi, the road leading to the compound's front gate was blocked by vehicles mounted with weapons belonging to the Libyan security forces, a Reuters witness said.
[An Nahar] The U.S. military and intelligence agencies are compiling detailed dossiers on those believed to have attacked the U.S. consulate in Libya ahead of possible retaliation, the New York Times ...which still proudly displays Walter Duranty's Pulitzer prize... reported.
Citing U.S. officials, the Times reported late Tuesday that the top-secret Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) was collecting information on the deadly attack last month that killed a U.S. ambassador and three other Americans.
U.S. President Barack Obama On this Memorial Day, as our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes -- and I see many of them in the audience here today... has vowed to bring those behind the attack to justice, but has faced mounting criticism as officials have struggled to explain how it happened and who was behind it.
The Times said the information now being compiled could be used to launch drone strikes or commando raids against suspects, but that no decision has yet been taken on any potential target.
"They are putting together information on where these individuals live, who their family members and their associates are, and their entire pattern of life," the Times quoted an American official as saying.
The September 11 attack came just weeks before the November 6 presidential election, in which Obama hopes to secure a second term.
The president has touted his foreign policy achievements, especially the killing of the late Osama bin Laden ... who has left the building... in May 2011, but has faced accusations of lax security at the consulate in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi.
MANAMA: Bahraini authorities released rights activist Zainab Al-Khawaja from prison yesterday after she served a two-month jail term for destroying government property, her lawyer told AFP.
"Zainab is free and she is home with her family," Mohammed Al-Jishi said adding that she was supposed to be released yesterday, when her two-month sentence came to an end. He said she was released "after orders from the attorney general."
Zainab, daughter of prominent activist Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja who is serving a life sentence for plotting against the state, was arrested while protesting on Aug. 2. She was sentenced to two months in prison for destroying property belonging to the Ministry of Interior, said Jishi.
In May she was released after serving a one month jail term for attacking a policewoman at a demonstration. She has also paid a 200 dinars ($530) fine for having insulted a police officer.
According to Jishi, Zainab will have to return to court today to face charges of "illegal assembly" that date back to February.
KUWAIT: Kuwait's Cabinet has asked the country's ruler to consider dissolving Parliament, state news agency KUNA reported yesterday, in a widely expected bid to clear the way for a new election and end months of political deadlock.
Kuwait has been unable to hold a parliamentary session for several months after its Constitutional Court effectively dissolved the opposition-dominated assembly which was elected in February, basing its decision on a technicality.
The ruling in June reinstated the previous Parliament, originally elected in 2009 and which contained more government supporters, but the body has not been able to convene due to a boycott by lawmakers.
"A draft decree to dissolve the 2009 parliament was submitted to the emir ... because it was not possible to hold sessions of the National Assembly due to a lack of quorum," Information Minister Sheikh Mohammad Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah said, according to KUNA.
The 2009 pro-government Parliament was dissolved in December after youth-led street protests and allegations of corruption against some of its members but was reinstated by the constitutional court in a June 20 ruling.
Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah is expected to issue a decree dissolving Parliament today which would pave the way to hold fresh elections within 60 days, according to the constitution.
[An Nahar] A Yemeni alliance of groups that want independence for the south of the country said in a statement Wednesday that they will boycott next month's national dialogue proposed by the government in Sanaa. They want to have their own failed state. Then Hadramout can break off and they'll have three failed states.
The Southern Movement "refuses to take part in the national dialogue conference" which will be held in mid-November, the umbrella group said in a statement concluding its three-day conference held in Aden, the capital of the formerly independent South Yemen.
It called instead for a forum that takes place "under international supervision and aims at restoring the former (independent) southern state," that lasted until 1990, the group said in the statement after the conference ended Tuesday.
The national dialogue is to take place based on the Gulf-brokered and U.N.-backed power transfer deal by which former strongman President-for-Life Ali Abdullah Saleh ... Saleh initially took power as a strongman of North Yemen in 1977, when disco was in flower, but he didn't invite Donna Summer to the inauguration and Blondie couldn't make it... officially stepped down in February, following a year-long uprising against his rule.
It is seen as a critical phase in Yemen's transition process where all parties, including the opposition, the separatists, the youth and the northern rebels are expected to come together and agree on a new constitution and on presidential and parliamentary elections.
The dialogue will kick-off "in mid-November and will last six months," President Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi said late in September, in remarks published on the official Saba news agency.
This should be amusing. At least abroad, Turkish military men have dined out on the myth of the indomitable Turk for decades. Of course, if they were in fact invincible, the Ottoman Empire would be current geographical fact, rather than historical relic. The truth is a little more prosaic - Turkish forces have taken about 7K KIA while inflicting 28K losses on lightly armed Kurdish militia, since armed hostilities began in 1978.
Clay Blair:“The Turks, commanded by Brigadier General Tahsin Yazici, had arrived in Korea like the Marines, in a blaze of publicity. With their colorful, flowing mustaches, swarthly complexions, and fierce demeanors, they gave war correspondents and others the impression they were very tough soldiers. The reality was that they were ill trained, ill led, and green to combat”.
Mike Michaelis, CO of the US 27th Infantry Regiment who fought in Korea, described in an elegant style the average Turkish soldier that arrived in Korea to fight: “The Turks were commanded by an aged brigadier who had been a division commander at Gallipoli in 1916 fighting the British! He was highly respected, high up in the Turkish military establishment, and took a bust to brigadier to command the brigade. The average Turk soldier in the brigade came from the steppe country of Turkey, near Russia, had probably had only three or four years of school, was uprooted, moved to western Turkey, given a uniform, [a] rifle, and a little smattering of training, stuck on a ship, sailed ten thousand miles, then dumped off on a peninsula – ‘Korea, where’s that?’ – and told the enemy was up there someplace, go get him! The Turk soldier scratches his head and says, ‘What’s he done to me?’”
Raymond Cartier is more caustic, describing the facts with an undisguised ironical manner: “For the Turks is their first appearance they make in Korea. It was preceded by a bright reputation for their bravery, and even for their fierceness. The first news from their battles are shaking the press offices of the American newspapers. The Turks assaulted using the bayonets, they created a massacre and arrested hundreds of prisoners... Their only mistake is that they picked up the wrong enemy: They considered as Chinese the South Koreans that were retreating. When they meet the real Chinese is their turn to get slaughtered. The remaining of the brigade took refuge at the positions of the 38th Infantry Regiment”
Robert Leckie (whose WWII reminiscences were chronicled in the HBO series "The Pacific") clarifies in a straight manner the purpose for which that Turkish “victory” was treated with so much publicity: “The Turks moved out, and then, after reaching the village of Wawon about seven miles east, were brought to the battle which American newsmen, eager for a victory to report (especially, it seems, if it could be about those “Terrible Turks” of whom Americans knew so little), proclaimed around the globe. No small fight ever won more impressive headlines around the world. The word was flashed that the Turks, meeting the Chinese for the first time, had dealt them a bloody repulse at bayonet point; it was the first stirring bit of news from the November battle. But what precisely happened in the first few hours at Wawon is still an open question. The brigade also boasted the capture of several hundred enemy prisoners from among these first “Chinese” waves. The word gave a lift to the neighbors. Lt. Sukio Oji, a Nisei interpreter, was sent by the 2nd Division to interview the prisoners. Instead of Chinese, he found 200 forlorn ROKs who had blundered into the Turkish column while beating their way back from the fight at Tokcon”.
Clay Blair notes with clarity: “Like the war correspondents, Coulter apparently was mesmerized by the Turks and continued to regard them as superhuman fighters rather than the poorly led green troops that they were. Coulter’s misplaced confidence in the Turks led to disastrous consequences”
Clay Blair reports: “But the truth was that these overrated, poorly led green troops broke and bugged out, again leaving the entire right flank of Eight Army exposed”
The CO of the Porto Rican 65th Regiment later on expressed, using obviously disparaging words, his opinion for the Turkish presence in the battle: “On our left flank we had that reliable, unflappable British Brigade and they really caught hell. [On our right] the Turkish Brigade had fallen back some ten or twelve miles. […] As long as the Turks were on the offensive and the Chinese were running, the Turks were pretty good. But when the going was tough, they were hard to find”.
The reality in Korea was far closer to what any observer of the last century of Turkish history can point out - the Turk will occasionally put up a fight, but his armed formations are not exactly the modern incarnation of Alexander and his Companion Cavalry.
To be sure, Syria may be one the most isolationist or neutralist of Israel's enemies in the Arab League, but when they respond it be sudden + violent.
SYRIA = CHINA = like to give out lots of PCorrect Diplomatic-Media warnings + rhetoric, to include "no comments", THEN ONE DAY THEY WILL SUDDENLY BRUTALLY INTENTIONALLY ATTACK + WIPE OUT OR MASSACRE EVERYBODY. The opposition and only the opposition will held wholly responsible for technically ignoring their warnings, etc.
[Dawn] At least 24 people were bumped off in the city on sectarian grounds in September, but the police force seems to be unmoved over the bloodletting and by treating the matter as routine.
The cases of sectarian killings are being dealt by the cop shoppe in whose jurisdiction killing takes place and no special branch of the police force has been dealing with them, police officials have told Dawn.
"The coppers at cop shoppes are not skilled enough to tackle the routine cases, let alone detecting organised crime of sectarian killings," remarked a senior investigator while requesting anonymity. "The crime investigation department (CID) essentially mandated to probe the sectarian killings, seems to be busy in other assignments these days."
While the CID was supposed to look after cases pertaining to terrorism and sectarian killing, the more recently constituted Special Investigation Unit (SIU) was mandated to investigate cases of extortion, police killings and bank heists.
Similarly, Anti-Violent Crime Cell and Anti-Car Lifting Cell were supposed to probe kidnapping cases for ransom and vehicular crime respectively.
During its heydays in the early 2000s the CID, whose model was adopted from Punjab where it was pioneered, did conduct successful investigations into sectarian murders. However, the man who has no enemies isn't anybody and has never done anything... now its role seems to have reduced to providing technical assistance to the cop shoppes for solving the sectarian killings.
"We are not investigating the cases of sectarian killings since we are short of manpower," said SP Investigation CID Mazhar Mashwani.
"The investigations are carried out by the cop shoppes themselves under the supervision of the SP Investigation of the range.
We only provide technical assistance when required."
The SP Investigations have been recently posted in the three police ranges only after serious lapses and apathy were witnessed in the investigations of the routine cases.
The separate investigation branch of the police was done away with when the Police Order 2002 was replaced by Police Act of 1861, hence the additional station house officers of the cop shoppes are supposed to handle sectarian cases as well with the routine, said the officials.
[Dawn] The leaders of Pakistain Tehrik-e-Insaf ...a political party in Pakistan. PTI was founded by former Pakistani cricket captain and philanthropist Imran Khan. The party's slogan is Justice, Humanity and Self Esteem, each of which is open to widely divergent interpretations.... (PTI) belonging to tribal areas have demanded of the government to end military operations in Fata and take concrete steps to stop drone attacks.
The PTI leaders including Iqbal Afridi of Khyber Agency, Gul Zafar of Bajaur Agency, aka Turban Central ...Smallest of the agencies in FATA. The Agency administration is located in Khar. Bajaur is inhabited almost exclusively by Tarkani Pashtuns, which are divided into multiple bickering subtribes. Its 52 km border border with Afghanistan's Kunar Province makes it of strategic importance to Pakistain's strategic depth... , Daud of 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... and Nazar Nawaz told a presser here on Tuesday that government should utilise peaceful means for establishment of peace in tribal areas.
They alleged that rulers were least bothered to minimise miseries of tribal people. "Tribal people are deliberately kept backward by imposing unjust military operations and US secrete drone attacks on them," said Mr Afridi.
He said that the government failed to take any practical step to stop extrajudicial killings, drone attacks and military operations in Fata. He said that use of force was not a solution to the issue.
The PTI leader said that a sincere leadership could address the tribal issue as government did nothing to resolve problems of rustics. He said that the proposed march of PTI to Wazoo would play important role in establishment of peace in the region.
[Dawn] During the hearing of a petition filed by Tehrik-e-Istiqlal chief Air Martial (retd) Asghar Khan in the Supreme Court pertaining to the distribution of money among politicians by the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), the defence ministry in its reply stated that no political cell was operating in the ISI, DawnNews reported.
A three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, has been hearing the 1996 petition filed by Khan who had accused the ISI of financing politicians in the 1990 elections by dishing out Rs140 million to create the Islami Jamhoori Ittehad (IJI) and prevent Benazir Bhutto ... 11th Prime Minister of Pakistain in two non-consecutive terms from 1988 until 1990 and 1993 until 1996. She was the daughter of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, founder of the Pakistain People's Party, who was murdered at the instigation of General Ayub Khan. She was murdered in her turn by person or persons unknown while campaigning in late 2007. Suspects include, to note just a few, Baitullah Mehsud, General Pervez Musharraf, the ISI, al-Qaeda in Pakistain, and her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, who shows remarkably little curiosity about who done her in... 's PPP from winning the polls. The petition was based on an affidavit of former ISI chief Lt-Gen (retd) Asad Durrani.
During the hearing, the ministry submitted its reply saying no political cell was operating in the ISI.
Upon which, Chief Justice Iftikhar remarked that a letter submitted before the court on June 26, 1997 had stated that a political cell was functioning within the ISI.
The court subsequently directed Commander Shahbaz, the official representing the ministry, to submit the reply after it had been signed.
Shahbaz told the court that the ministry had confirmed the information with the intelligence agency before submitting its response.
Expressing its displeasure over the absence of Interior Secretary K.M. Siddiq Akbar, the bench issued summons for both the interior and defence secretaries.
The Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, movement in Gazoo expressed "deep regret" on Wednesday over a commentary aired by Syrian state television ... and if you can't believe state television who can you believe?
that criticized the group's leader Khaled Meshaal.
The remarks, broadcast on Syrian state television ... and if you can't believe state television who can you believe?
on Tuesday night, came after Meshaal attended a conference on Sunday of Turkey's ruling Justice and Development party, which has been a staunch of the Syrian opposition.
"We in the Hamas movement express our deep regret over the attacks and insults carried by Syrian state television ... and if you can't believe state television who can you believe?
against brother Khaled Meshaal, leader of the movement, and against the movement itself," the group said in a statement.
"The Hamas movement is bound to its people and its resistance and its rights, and distances itself from entering into any media polemic," it said.
"It will remain with the Arab and Islamic nation, and with the aspirations of its peoples for freedom, dignity and democracy."
The unprecedented Syrian television diatribe against Meshaal, delivered by a news presenter, accused him of having "sold out the Paleostinian resistance" and "forgotten Jerusalem" in exchange for "promises of normalization with the Zionist enemy and the U.S. administration."
"Syria is content to have been abandoned by those who sold the resistance out for power," the presenter said, recalling that 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... had offered Meshaal refuge when other regional powers were not willing to provide him with a base.
Hamas has found itself in an increasingly sensitive position as Syrian rebels battle troops loyal to Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad Before going into the family business Pencilneck was an eye doctor...
Syrian members of the Moslem Brüderbund movement, from which Hamas sprung, were among the first to participate when protests erupted against Assad's rule in March last year.
As peaceful demonstrations turned into all-out war between armed rebels and the regime, Hamas quietly moved its offices from Syria, evacuating most of its members, while publicly denying it had shifted its headquarters.
It tried to walk a careful line, expressing support for the Syrian people, while declining to publicly criticize the Assad regime, once one of its strongest allies.
But in Turkey on Sunday, Meshaal appeared to offer public support for the uprising.
"We salute the revolution of the Syrian people for freedom and democracy," he said during the meeting of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Justice and Development party.
"We are with the aspiration of the people for freedom, justice, democracy, dignity and real independence," Meshaal added.
[An Nahar] Human Rights Watch ... dedicated to bitching about human rights violations around the world... on Wednesday accused Gazoo's ruling Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, movement of "extensive" rights violations, including torture, warrantless and arbitrary arrests, and unfair trials.
In a report entitled "Abusive System: Criminal Justice in Gazoo," the New York-based watchdog alleged that Hamas security services also failed to inform relatives of the whereabouts of detainees, and had set to sit in solemn silence in a dull, dark dock, in a pestilential prison with a life-long lock Drop the rosco, Muggsy, or you're one with the ages! and abused lawyers.
"After five years of Hamas rule in Gazoo, its criminal justice system reeks of injustice, routinely violates detainees' rights, and grants impunity to abusive security services," HRW's deputy Middle East director Joe Stork said in a statement.
"Hamas should stop the kinds of abuses that Egyptians, Syrians and others in the region have risked their lives to bring to an end."
Spokespeople for Hamas did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
While no one in the current 'empty chair' administration knows whether Israel will strike Iran's nuclear program, America's war planners are preparing for a wide array of potential Israeli military options -- while also trying to limit the chances of the United States being drawn into a potentially bloody conflict in the Persian Gulf.
(Xinhua) -- Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi said Wednesday that when border incidents occur, the concerned countries should deal with them "wisely and rationally."
The minister's remarks came after the tension has gotten seriously high on the Syrian northern frontier with Turkey after artillery shells, reportedly coming from Syria, slammed the Sanliurfa province in southeastern Turkey and killed five Turks.
The Turkish artillery has reportedly fired at Syrian targets after the incident, further raising the already-high tension between the two countries.
After the border incident, Turkey called for an emergency meeting for the 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... 's National Atlantic Council to discuss the latest event.
Meanwhile, ...back at the the conspirators' cleverly concealed hideout the long-awaited message arrived. They quickly got to work with their decoder rings... Minister al-Zoubi said Syria is investigating the sources of the mortar attack, renewing calls for respecting the national illusory sovereignty of Syria.
"In cases of border incidents, the countries should handle them with wisdom, prudence and responsibility, particularly with the presence of armed terrorist groups that have their own agendas," the minister said.
He pointed out that the Syrian-Turkish borders are sprawling, charging that the borders are being used as smuggling routes for arms and ammunition.
Al-Zoubi also extended Syria's condolences to the families that have lost loved ones after the incident in Turkey.
"In cases of border incidents, the countries should handle them with wisdom, prudence and responsibility, particularly with the presence of armed terrorist groups that have their own agendas," the minister said.
The best part will be when Turkey finds out that they are getting screwed and stabbed in the back like the Kurds have for so long! If I ran Turkey the training bases would be incinerated why would any country subject itself to being attacked on multiple fronts?!? Can't wait to see what happens when they find out they got played!
I don't think so. The Turks are playing a dangerous game, but they aren't doing it unwittingly.
Recep Erdogan still wants to position Turkey as a major player in the Islamic world (and his party as the major power within Turkey). Assisting the rebellion in Syria is a relatively low-cost operation (especially since Western powers are footing most of the bill.) And if it gets really dicey, there's always NATO to shame into action of some sort.
As far a 'multiple fronts' - I'd say dueling shells on the southern border isn't on a par with Kurdish attacks.