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Today: 66 articles and 216 comments as of 17:53.
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Blasts Rock N. Nigeria, Police Station Attacked
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 1: WoT Operations
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Page 2: WoT Background
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3 18:59 Zhang Fei [237]
Page 3: Non-WoT
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Page 4: Opinion
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3 06:54 Bright Pebbles [248]
4 23:17 JosephMendiola [325]
6 18:42 Hupusoth the Bunyip4399 [280]
9 00:02 Procopius2k [381]
2 08:50 AlanC [249]
5 20:57 Mike Kozlowski [258]
Page 6: Politix
6 21:08 Procopius2k [244]
Good morning
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [342 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Yup, push up for sure.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 02/07/2012 1:39 Comments || Top||

#2  Birthday/Daily Gam Shot

Gloria Talbott aka Kay in "All That Heaven Allows (1955)" aka Marge Bradley Farrell in "I Married a Monster from Outer Space (1958)" aka Isabelle Ducotel in "We're No Angels (1955)" aka Susan Winter in "The Cyclops (1957)" aka Sally in "The Leech Woman (1960)" aka Ruth Red Hawk in "Oklahoma Territory (1960)" aka Princess Irawanie in "Alias Jesse James (1959)" aka Nora Bawdre in "The Young Guns (1956)" (Died in 2000 at age 69)

Safety Glasses Required
Posted by: GolfBravoUSMC || 02/07/2012 3:36 Comments || Top||

#3  Just got back from the caucus. Think Santorum is in for a big night. Not a single vote for Romney at our table.
Posted by: Iblis || 02/07/2012 22:38 Comments || Top||

US to expand special operations forces' role in Afghanistan
The new command could take over responsibility for the daily war
Rear Guard
Or, maybe the way it should have been done in the first place...
effort as the U.S. reduces the amount of troops in Afghanistan and moves away from its combat role, according to the Post.
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/07/2012 01:51 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [279 views] Top|| File under:

#1  To win this war we need special ops in North and South Waziristan.Pakistan know this so refuse feet on the ground.
Posted by: Paul D || 02/07/2012 7:47 Comments || Top||

#2  Or a last roll of the dice.
Posted by: phil_b || 02/07/2012 8:15 Comments || Top||

#3  Or, maybe the way it should have been done in the first place...

It's pretty much what WAS being done in the first place - but the wise ones decided Iraq was a bad war and A'stan was the good war, so we switched back.
Posted by: Glenmore || 02/07/2012 8:21 Comments || Top||

#4  Drudge has a link to a page in which Lt. Col. Davis tell his story in his own words.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 02/07/2012 11:31 Comments || Top||

#5  Sorry. The comment above was meant for the story below about the whistle blower.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 02/07/2012 11:33 Comments || Top||

#6  Pakistan is not reliable. Supply and support of special operations in Aghanistan is iffy without Pakistan support. Are we supplying through Pakistan again after taking out OBL?
Posted by: JohnQC || 02/07/2012 16:37 Comments || Top||

In Afghan war, an officer becomes a whistle-blower
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/07/2012 01:43 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [325 views] Top|| File under:

#1  More power to him.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 02/07/2012 5:51 Comments || Top||

#2  It has long been obvious that the US is just treading water in Afghanistan. The Afghans are incapable and unwilling to run their own affairs, outside of dictatorship, and the Taliban offer only chaos and rule by whim.

Perhaps the best thing the US could do to salvage the situation is to cede the South to the Pushtun to do with as they please, and defend the North as a de facto independent state, no Pushtun allowed.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/07/2012 8:16 Comments || Top||

#3  There is no such thing as an Afghan.

After 40 years of civil war, they are Pushtuns, Tadjiks, etc.
Posted by: phil_b || 02/07/2012 8:23 Comments || Top||

#4  on our way out - turn over any eqiuipment we aren't bringing home to the tribes of the northern alliance as a giant FU to Karzai, the caped restauranteur, and the Pashtun
Posted by: Frank G || 02/07/2012 9:20 Comments || Top||

#5  The Taliban are just the latest twist in a Pashtun vs Pashtun civil war that's been going on for 200 years. Why we should expect it to be resolved in a couple of years ( with or without SF in charge) is beyond me.
Posted by: Frozen Al || 02/07/2012 12:31 Comments || Top||

#6  Let me get this straight - our ground forces are liars to a man, including the retired personnel? I think this guy's a little too impressed with himself. Hundreds of thousands of US troops have rotated through Afghanistan. If the mission were in real trouble, we'd have heard from more than one person. One estimate is that the number of full-time Taliban is around 2000. That's about 60 per province. We have over 100,000 troops in-country. Let's say the total is 100,000. That's almost 3000 per province. So in a given province, 3000 GI's can't get 60 Taliban to keep their heads down? The Taliban aren't exactly the Vietcong, with their battalion-sized attacks on American fire bases and regiment-sized running battles with heli-borne troops, resulting in an average daily GI death toll of 20 a day (58,000 GI dead vs 1.2m Vietcong and NVA dead).
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 02/07/2012 18:48 Comments || Top||

Africa North
Egypt protesters, police clash in Cairo

[Iran Press TV] Fresh festivities have erupted between protesters and security forces in the streets of the Egyptian capital, Cairo, for the fifth consecutive day amid calls for civil disobedience against the country's junta.

Security forces fired tear gas, birdshot and rubber bullets to disperse stone-throwing protesters outside the interior ministry.

The protesters demand the handover of power to a civilian government, the compensation of the deaders' families and achieving social justice.

The demonstrators threatened to resort to civil disobedience if the military council fails to fulfill their demands.

"Civil disobedience should be implemented in case the military council clings to power and does not respond to the instructions of parliament," said demonstrator Hamed Almizary.

Over a dozen people have been killed since the start of the festivities last week.

The violence erupted after dozens of citizens died in riots following a football match in Port Saeed last Wednesday.

Demonstrators accuse the ruling generals of failing to establish security. Some allege that the bloodshed was a deliberate attempt by loyalists of ousted president Hosni Mubarak
...The former President-for-Life of Egypt, dumped by popular demand in early 2011...
to lead Egypt into chaos.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [257 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring

Africa Subsaharan
Blast targets military barracks in Nigeria
On Tuesday, two blasts rocked the northern Nigerian city of Kaduna, including one targeting a military barracks. The number of casualties was not immediately clear.

Musa Ilallah, an official with the National Emergency Management Agency, said "There were two separate blasts," with one near a bridge and the other "inside the 1st Mechanised Division of the Nigerian army."

He said rescue officials had been deployed but were being refused access to the area by soldiers.

Ilallah stated, "From all indications, they gate-crashed into the military barracks."

He added that there was talk of a suicide bomber, but that there was no official confirmation.

Residents said windows at an office complex at the military barracks were shattered. The area had been cordoned off, but the office complex could be seen.

One resident said, "Virtually all the glass has been shattered. I saw soldiers with glass cuts on their bodies being taken out, but it's difficult to say if there were any (more serious) casualties."
Posted by: ryuge || 02/07/2012 09:13 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [269 views] Top|| File under:

Blasts Rock N. Nigeria, Police Station Attacked
[An Nahar] Gunmen blew up a cop shoppe and shot one officer in Nigeria's flashpoint city of Kano on Monday as blasts rocked a market in Maiduguri, the base of the Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. Currently wearing a false nose and moustache and answering to Jama'atu Ahlus-Sunnah Lidda'Awati Wal Jihad, or Big Louie...
Islamists, police said.

Boko Haram has claimed a series of recent attacks in Africa's most populous nation and top oil producer, including coordinated gun and bomb assaults on January 20 in Kano, Nigeria's second city, that killed at least 185.

A senior police officer told Agence La Belle France Presse the cop shoppe in Kano's Sharada neighborhood had been burned down by attackers armed with explosives, who also shot one officer in the leg.

There was also a shootout between police and the attackers, residents said.

"I had just arrived home in time for the curfew when I heard an kaboom coming from around the cop shoppe. Shortly, gunshots followed. From what I heard it sounded like a shootout," said Bala Salisu, 46, from Kano's Sharada district.

Authorities imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew in Kano following the January 20 attacks that primarily targeted the police, like many of the group's recent assaults.

Another Kano resident, Sadiq Aniyu, said he was at a checkpoint not far from the cop shoppe when he "heard a huge kaboom and gunshots."

"We all panicked and it became chaotic as people on cars and on cycle of violences jostled to escape the area," Aniyu, 30, said.

Residents reported a separate gunbattle near a suspected Boko Haram hideout on the outskirts of Kano, the predominantly Mohammedan northern hub.
Hurrah -- a hideout found! That could be the next break in the case...
A joint military and police force raided a home in the Mariri neighborhood sparking a shootout with the occupants, said locals who requested anonymity.

Separately in Maiduguri, east of Kano, residents reported multiple blasts at the Gamboru market that set several vehicles and shops on fire.

Maiduguri is seen as a stronghold of Boko Haram, the shadowy Islamist group blamed for a series of recent attacks in Nigeria that have killed more than 200 people already this year.

"I heard five kabooms around the market and plumes of black smoke... filled the air. The market is still on fire. Soldiers and policeman have taken over the whole area," said resident Aisha Goni.

Colonel Victor Ebhaleme, operations chief for the Joint Task Force in Maiduguri, a special military unit set up to crack down on Boko Haram, confirmed the kabooms at the market but declined to give details.

Security forces have faced mounting pressure to contain the Boko Haram insurgency that has involved a set of increasingly sophisticated attacks.

The spiraling violence has sparked deep concern in the international community and shaken the country, whose 160 million population is roughly divided between a mainly Mohammedan north and predominantly Christian south.

There has been intense speculation over whether Boko Haram has formed links with outside bully boy groups, including al-Qaeda's north African branch.

Analysts say the violence has been fed by deep poverty in the north, where masses of unemployed youths have little trust in government or hope for the future in a country long considered one of the world's most corrupt.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [594 views] Top|| File under: Boko Haram

Clashes between Southern Movement followers and security forces in Hadramout
[Yemen Post] Clashes broke out between security force and Southern Movement followers on Sunday in the southeastern Yemeni province of Hadramout, leaving a protester killed and 5 others maimed.

Security forces removed a tent set up by the Southern Movement protesters, who call for boycotting the upcoming presidential election, in Al-Mokalla, the scenic provincial capital of Hadramout, but the protesters tried to hold them back, resulting in festivities between the two sides.

Security forces shot one killed and maimed 5 others in the festivities, eyewitnesses and medics said.

Angry about removing their tent, which was set up in the middle of a main road, Separation supporters broke into a cop shoppe and forcibly released their captured friends.

A lot of indigenous people took to streets, cut off the roads and closed shops to protest against the killing of their fellow protester, Majed al-Hamdi, who died in a local hospital a couple of hours after being shot in the head, according to eyewitnesses.

Separation or Southern Movement refused to be involved in signing the GCC-drawn deal as they refuse to remain part of the unified Yemen. They demand to secede from Yemen and have their own southern independent state.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [272 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring

Sectarian clashes continue in north Yemen, at least 55 killed
[Yemen Post] Fierce festivities flared up in the northern Yemeni province of Hajjah between Shiite al-Houthi followers and Sunni tribal alliance fighters, claiming the lives of at least 55 and wounding scores of others.

...a Zaidi Shia insurgent group operating in Yemen. They have also been referred to as the Believing Youth. Hussein Badreddin al-Houthi is said to be the spiritual leader of the group and most of the military leaders are his relatives. The Yemeni government has accused the Houthis of having ties to the Iranian government, which wouldn't suprise most of us. The group has managed to gain control over all of Saada Governorate and parts of Amran Governorate, Al Jawf Governorate and Hajjah Governorate....
rebels carried out an offensive on Sunday and Monday on some Sunni-held posts in Kashar area of Hajjah; however, the rustics expected the attack and, therefore, managed to repel it, a local source told Yemen Post.

"The festivities continued for more than non-stop 10 hours, leaving at least 40 Houthis as well as 15 rustics killed. Not to mention the large number of the unspecified causalities from the two sides," said the local source, who requested to remain anonymous.

Al-Houthi rebels have reportedly come in large number to Hajjah to reinforce their fighters based in the province, following the huge prophetic cradle ceremony they held on Saturday, which was attended by tens of thousands of Shiite supporters from across the country.

Sectarian violence in Hajjah and Sadda between Salafis and Shiites has broken out when the latter sought to expand its sway in the area.

Al-Houthis took over Sadda lately, taking advantage of the recent unrest the fragmented-state is currently experiencing.

Sadda has witnessed six wars between Army troops and al-Houthi Shiite fighters, leaving thousands killed from the two sides, forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes, and triggering a catastrophic humanitarian crisis.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [268 views] Top|| File under:

British Judge Orders Release on Bail of Abu Qatada
[An Nahar] A British judge on Monday ordered the release on bail of radical holy man Abu Qatada, allegedly a former top aide of al-Qaeda chief the late Osama bin Laden,
Osama bin Laden is dead.
He took two shots to the head.
That made him frown
and he had to lie down.
Osama bin Laden is dead.

despite government concerns he poses a security risk.

The interior ministry condemned the decision, saying the 51-year-old is "a dangerous man who we believe poses a real threat to our security and who has not changed in his views or attitude to the UK."

Britannia has been trying to deport Qatada to Jordan for the past six years but its efforts were blocked last month by the European Court of Human Rights, which said evidence against him may have been obtained through torture.

Following the European ruling, Qatada applied to the Special Immigration Appeals Commission in Britannia to be released from the high-security Long Lartin jail in Worcestershire, central England.

Lawyer Ed Fitzgerald told the commission that Qatada's detention for six and a half years while fighting deportation "has now gone on for too long to be reasonable or lawful".

"However the risk of absconding, however the risk of further offending, there comes a point when it's just too long."

But Keith Vaz, a politician who chairs parliament's Home Affairs Select Committee, said most people would be "astonished by this decision considering Abu Qatada is wanted on terrorism charges in eight countries".

"The only way to avoid the situation occurring again is a fast-tracked system in the UK and EU courts so that those who pose a threat to the British public are deported as swiftly as possible."

Judge John Mitting ruled that Qatada should be set free under "highly prescriptive terms" for the next three months.

After that the judge indicated he may release Qatada altogether unless the government had made progress in trying to deport him. "The time will arrive quite soon when continuing detention or deprivation of liberty could not be justified," Mitting said.
Once again Europeans sit in judgment of others around the world, and impose European standards on other countries. There's an old 19th century word for that, though I can't quite remember. Hmmm, 'imper...' something...
Qatada, a Jordanian of Paleostinian origin who is also known as Omar Mohammed Othman, was once labeled bin Laden's right-hand man in Europe by a Spanish judge. The father-of-five, who arrived in Britannia in 1993 claiming asylum, has been in and out of prison for the past decade and has thwarted numerous attempts by the authorities in London to deport him.
More background on this joker's history here.
The holy man has been convicted in his absence in Jordan of involvement in two attacks and Amman has repeatedly urged London to extradite him.

The European court said however that it "finds that there is a real risk that the applicant's retrial would amount to a flagrant denial of justice" -- a violation of Article 6 of the Convention on Human Rights.

Interior minister Theresa May is now seeking assurances from Jordan that evidence gained through torture would not be used against Qatada.
If the Jordanians aren't to be allowed to jug him, why would they want him?
A front man for the interior ministry, known as the Home Office in Britannia, added: "This is not the end of the road and we are continuing to consider our legal options in response to the European Court's ruling."

The judge said it would take "between a few days and about a week" for Britannia's domestic intelligence service MI5 to check Qatada's proposed bail address, which was not revealed in court, before he could be released.

The holy man will subsequently be under a 22-hour curfew, prohibited from using the Internet or any electronic communications and he will be electronically monitored. His visitors and movements will also be restricted.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [351 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda

#1  Make him wear a tracking device that provides his location to all Google Maps users. I think the situation will work itself out.
Posted by: Super Hose || 02/07/2012 0:15 Comments || Top||

#2  A .30 Hole in his forehead would look sooo good.
.50 woul be bettr.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 02/07/2012 1:43 Comments || Top||

#3  Make the "judge" wear a tracking device too. He's a fucking danger to the entire country.
Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 02/07/2012 6:56 Comments || Top||

#4  Must be duck season.
Posted by: mojo || 02/07/2012 10:25 Comments || Top||

#5  It's a pretty sad state of affairs if the Brits can't deport the guy just because some European court tells them not to.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 02/07/2012 11:48 Comments || Top||

#6  Perhaps they should deport him to the sacred precincts of the European Court of Human Rights. I would suggest that the British guards handcuff him to the desk of the senior judges clerk, then quickly exit the building.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/07/2012 12:45 Comments || Top||

#7  Make the "judge" wear a tracking device too. He's a fucking danger to the entire country.

Impeachment and removal from office ought to cover that problem. Not that Cameron the squish would ever exert himself to do anything controversial like that.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 02/07/2012 19:08 Comments || Top||

#8  a muslim Henry Waxman with all the personality and charm included. An axe handle to the face every waking morning would be my tracking device. Can't walk? We know where you are
Posted by: Frank G || 02/07/2012 21:23 Comments || Top||

#9  The judges are a mix of nationalities, but the ECHR is in Strasbourg. Drop him off there. Betcha French courts wouldn't stand for this shit.
Posted by: RandomJD || 02/07/2012 22:25 Comments || Top||

Home Front: WoT
Chicago cabbie pleads guilty to financing jihad
Chicago: A Pak-American, charged with sending money to the now-believed-to-be-dead al Qaeda leader Ilyas Kashmiri, has pleaded guilty before a court here for providing money for terrorist activities in Jammu and Kashmire.

Raja Lahrasib Khan, a Chicago taxi driver and native of Pakistain who became a naturalised US citizen in 1988, pleaded guilty to one count of attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization, resolving charges that have been pending since he was placed in long-term storage in March 2010.

Khan, 58, is currently in jail and his sentencing is scheduled for May 30. Born and raised in Pakistain-occupied Kashmire, Khan faces a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. He immigrated to the US in 1970s.

His plea agreement calls for an agreed sentence of between five and eight years in prison, and it requires Khan to cooperate with the government in any matter in which he is called upon to assist
What a clever idea. One wonders if he has already been talking...
through the termination of his sentence and any period of supervised release, the Justice Department said.

Khan admitted that he met with Ilyas Kashmiri, who was also involved in separatist movement in Jammu and Kashmire, in Pakistain in the early to mid-2000s and again in 2008.

At the time of the second meeting, Khan knew or had reason to believe that Kashmiri was working with al Qaeda, in addition to leading attacks against the Indian government in Kashmire, the Justice Department said.

During their 2008 meeting, Kashmiri told Khan that the late Osama bin Laden
... who used to be alive but now he's not...
was alive, healthy and giving orders, and Khan gave Kashmiri approximately 20,000 Pak rupees (approximately $200 to $250), which he intended Kashmiri to use to support attacks against India.

The Justice Department said on November 23, 2009, Khan sent approximately 77,917 rupees (approximately $930) from Chicago to an individual in Pakistain, via Western Union, and then directed the individual by phone to give Kashmiri approximately 25,000 rupees (approximately $300).

Although Khan intended the funds to be used by Kashmiri to support attacks against India, he was also aware that Kashmiri was working with al-Qaeda, the Department said.

In February and March 2010, Khan participated in several meetings with an undercover law enforcement agent who posed as someone interested in sending money to Kashmiri to purchase weapons and ammunition, but only if Kashmiri was working with al-Qaeda, as well as sending individuals into Pakistain to receive military-style training so they could conduct attacks against US forces and interests, the Justice Department said.

On March 17, 2010, the undercover agent provided Khan with $1,000, which Khan agreed to provide to Kashmiri.

Khan then gave the funds to his son, who was traveling from the US to Britannia, intending to later retrieve the money from his son in Britannia and subsequently provide it to Kashmiri in Pakistain.

Further on March 23, 2010, Khan's son arrived at an airport in Britannia and a search by British law enforcement officials yielded seven of the ten $100 bills that the undercover agent had provided to Khan.

After learning of his son's detention, Khan attempted to end his involvement in the scheme to provide funds to Kashmiri by requesting an urgent meeting with another individual who was also present at Khan's earlier meetings with the undercover agent.

During their meeting, Khan demanded to return the undercover agent's funds by providing $800 to this other individual, the Justice Department said.
This article starring:
Raja Lahrasib Khan
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/07/2012 08:21 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [273 views] Top|| File under:

#1  It doesn't seem consistent that this guy gets a 5 year sentence, and the lady in Minnesota who funded al-Shabaab will get up to 195 years in prison. It's great that he'll cooperate with authorities, but I don't want him walking the streets of this country as early as 2017.
Posted by: American Delight || 02/07/2012 12:40 Comments || Top||

#2  How many muslims are Taxi drivers?

Told in UK alot are taxi drivers as they get cash in hand so they can collect welfare payments
Posted by: Paul D || 02/07/2012 14:38 Comments || Top||

#3  Not to mention sharing hackney carriage licences with brothers and cousins etc .. Paul D
Posted by: Bubba de Medici3120 || 02/07/2012 15:54 Comments || Top||

Chicago man admits giving cash to al-Qaida militant
CHICAGO - A Chicago cab driver pleaded guilty on Monday to giving money to a senior Pakistan-based al-Qaida operative implicated in militant plots in South Asia and Europe who was killed in a suspected US drone strike in June.

Raja Lahrasib Khan, 58, a native of Pakistan who is a naturalized US citizen, never posed any imminent domestic danger, authorities said at the time of his arrest in March 2010.

Khan admitted that he met with Ilyas Kashmiri, an alleged leader of both al-Qaida  and one of its Pakistan-based affiliates, in Pakistan in the early to mid-2000s and again in 2008.

Khan gave Kashmiri about 20,000 Pakistani rupees - approximately $200 to $250 - in 2008, and directed another person to give Kashmiri the equivalent of $300 in 2009, prosecutors said.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/07/2012 08:10 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [272 views] Top|| File under:

Massive blast hits Pakistan Railways
[Iran Press TV] A massive kaboom, suspected to have been carried out by bully boyz has hit a key railroad in Pakistain's southwestern province of Balochistan,
...the Pak province bordering Kandahar and Uruzgun provinces in Afghanistan and Sistan Baluchistan in Iran. Its native Baloch propulation is being displaced by Pashtuns and Punjabis and they aren't happy about it...
Press TV reports.

Early Monday, explosives were reportedly used by suspected tribal bully boyz with the intention of blowing up a railway track in the Put Feeder area of Dera Murad Jamali District of Balochistan.

Pak sources have not reported any casualties so far. No group has yet grabbed credit for the incident.

Over recent months, similar attacks on gas and electricity lines have been common in the gas-rich area.

There has been a surge in cut-thoat attacks in Pakistain over some past years.

Despite the Pak government's operations against TTP bully boyz and associated groups, they have still been able to spread their influence in various regions of the country and have killed thousands of people.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [417 views] Top|| File under: TTP

Rocket Fired from Gaza Hits Israel
[An Nahar] A rocket fired by Paleostinian Islamic fascisti from the Gazoo Strip hit southern Israel late on Monday causing no casualties or damage, an Israeli military spokeswoman said.

"A Qassam rocket hit an open field in the Sha'ar Hanegev regional council," the spokeswoman told Agence La Belle France Presse.

On Friday morning, two Gazoo residents were maimed by a series of Israeli air strikes in response to rocket fire at southern Israel on Wednesday night.

The Israeli strikes came hours after U.N. chief the ephemeral Ban Ki-moon
... of whom it can be said to his credit that he is not Kofi Annan...
was in Gazoo as part of a visit to Israel and the Paleostinian territories aimed at persuading the two sides to continue meetings, as the international community seeks a way to kick-start direct negotiations.

Since the beginning of 2012, more than 20 rockets have been fired into Israel from the Paleostinian enclave controlled by the Islamist Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, movement, according to army figures.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [260 views] Top|| File under: Hamas

Obama tightens Iran sanctions over bank 'deception'
[Dawn] US President Barack Obama
We're gonna punish our enemies and we're gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us...
signed an executive order imposing stricter sanctions on Iran and its central bank, saying new powers to freeze assets were needed because Iranian banks were concealing transactions, the White House said on Monday.

"I have determined that additional sanctions are warranted, particularly in light of the deceptive practices of the Central Bank of Iran and other Iranian banks to conceal transactions of sanctioned parties," Obama said in a letter to Congress.

He said the new powers over Iranian assets deemed to be in US control, including foreign branches of American banks, were necessary because of "deficiencies in Iran's anti-money laundering regime" as well as "the continuing and unacceptable risk posed to the international financial system by Iran's activities."

Previously, US banks were required to reject, rather than block and freeze, Iranian transactions. The new executive order gives American institutions new powers to seize assets they encounter instead of just turning them back.

The US Treasury Department said the expanded sanctions would affect assets of all Iranian ministries and state-owned entities, including the central bank that processes Iran's oil revenues.

"These actions underscore the administration's resolve to hold the Iranian regime accountable for its failure to meet its international obligations," it said in a statement.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [270 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran

#1  "I have determined ..."

Shades of Kim Jong Il?
Posted by: gorb || 02/07/2012 21:28 Comments || Top||

Armed groups fire missiles into Homs
[Iran Press TV] Terrorist groups have fired several missiles into Bab Amr district in the restive Syrian city of Homs, Press TV reports.

Heavy festivities have been reported in Homs since early on Monday.

Some reports suggest that the missiles hit a hospital in the Bab Amr district, resulting in casualties. An oil pipeline was also hit by an kaboom in the area.

Gunmen also attacked a bus carrying a group of workers in Homs, killing one and injuring six others.

According to the Britannia-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, at least 17 people have been killed in Homs on Monday.

Government troops have been fighting terrorist groups in Homs for several days.

Homs, one of the main focuses of terrorist groups fighting against the government of Syrian Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Light of the Alawites...
, has witnessed a number of acts of deadly violence since the beginning of the unrest in the country 11 months ago.

...back at the buffalo wallow, Tex and his new-found Indian friend were preparing a little surprise for the bandidos...
gangs have killed three Syrian troops and kidnapped several others in the northern city of Idlib.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March and many people have bit the dust in the violence.

The West and the Syrian opposition accuse the government of killing protesters. But Damascus
...Capital of the last remaining Baathist regime in the world...
blames ''outlaws, saboteurs and armed terrorist groups'' for the unrest, insisting that it is being orchestrated from abroad.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [264 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

At Least 69 Killed as Syrian Regime Pounds Protest Hubs
[An Nahar] Syrian forces rained rockets and shells down on protest hubs on Monday, activists said, as another 66 civilians died in the regime's crackdown on dissent.

The opposition Syrian National Council (SNC) said the regime was surrounding Homs with tanks ahead of "a major offensive" and warned of a "genocide" in the central Syrian city.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 42 non-combatants were killed in Homs alone, and warned that the corpse count was likely to rise because many of the dozens of maimed were at death's door.

State media reported the deaths of three soldiers and said a "terrorist group" blew up an oil pipeline in Homs.

The army also launched an assault on the Zabadani area near Damascus
...Capital of the last remaining Baathist regime in the world...
with heavy tank shelling, killing at least three people, said the Britannia-based Observatory.

It also reported civilian deaths in Rastan, Houla and Qusair, all towns in Homs province, as well at Sarghaya, near Damascus, in the northern city of Aleppo
...For centuries, Aleppo was Greater Syria's largest city and the Ottoman Empire's third, after Constantinople and Cairo. Although relatively close to Damascus in distance, Aleppans regard Damascenes as country cousins...
and in Idlib, northwest Syria.

A resident of Homs told Agence La Belle France Presse the latest assault began shortly after 0400 GMT, with unprecedented barrages of rockets, mortar rounds and artillery shells.

"What is happening is horrible, it's beyond belief," said activist Omar Shaker, reached by telephone as loud detonations were heard in the background.

"There is nowhere to take shelter, nowhere to hide," he said. "We are running short of medical supplies and we are only able to provide basic treatment to the injured."

One video posted on YouTube apparently showed a field hospital hit by shelling in the Baba Amro district and maimed patients lying on stretchers on the floor amid pools of blood and shattered glass.

Footage shot by a BBC undercover team in Homs showed buildings ablaze in rebel neighborhoods as regime forces pounded them with heavy weapons. Plumes of white smoke billowed into the sky.

Damascus blamed the bloodshed in Homs on "terrorist gangs" using mortars.

The violence comes as Western powers seek new ways to punish Damascus amid growing outrage over the veto by Russia and China of a U.N. resolution condemning Syria for its deadly crackdown on nearly 11 months of protest.

Saturday's double veto handed Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad's
The Scourge of Hama...
regime a "license to kill," the SNC said.

Damascus does not recognize the scale of the protest movement that erupted in mid-March, insisting it is fighting "terrorist groups" seeking to sow chaos as part of a foreign-hatched conspiracy.
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [271 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

U.N. Chief Says Homs Onslaught an Affront to 'Humanity'
[An Nahar] U.N. chief the ephemeral Ban Ki-moon
... of whom it can be said to his credit that he is not Kofi Annan...
said Monday he was appalled by the Syrian government's intensified onslaught on the protest city of Homs which he called "unacceptable before humanity."

Ban joined a growing global chorus of condemnation of Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Leveler of Latakia...
's actions since a U.N. Security Council resolution on Syria was vetoed by Russia and China on Saturday.

"The secretary general is appalled by the escalating violence in Syria, particularly at the mounting corpse count and continued onslaught on the city of Homs involving the use of heavy artillery and the shelling of civilian areas," said U.N. front man Martin Nesirky.

"Such violence is totally unacceptable before humanity."

Ban added: "The lack of agreement in the Security Council gives no license to the Syrian authorities to step up attacks on the Syrian population. No government can commit such acts against its people without its legitimacy being eroded."

At least 66 non-combatants were killed across Syria on Monday as Assad's troops pounded Homs with mortars and launched an assault on Zabadani, near the capital, activists said. Scores more have been killed in Homs in recent days.

Ban "deeply regrets" that the Syrian authorities continue to ignore "pressing" international calls to stop using force against civilians. He highlighted that the Syrian government "is accountable under international human rights
...which are usually open to widely divergent definitions...
law for all acts of violence perpetrated by its security forces against the civilian population," said the front man.

The U.N. secretary general called for redoubled efforts to end the violence and seek "an inclusive Syrian-led political process."
Posted by: Fred || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [273 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

Britain recalls ambassador; US closes embassy
Britain on Monday recalled its ambassador to Syria in protest at the continued onslaught against civilians by Bashar al-Assad's regime, as the United States closed its embassy in Damascus and withdrew its staff amid fears for their security.

With diplomatic pressure intensifying on Syria, William Hague, the Foreign Secretary, also summoned the country's ambassador in London to express his "abhorrence" at "violence that is utterly unacceptable to the civilised world".

Addressing the House of Commons on the crisis, Mr Hague said Simon Hollis, the British ambassador, had been withdrawn "for consultations" though diplomatic ties would not be severed completely at present.

"This is a doomed regime as well as a murdering regime. There is no way it can recover its credibility internationally or with its own people," he said.

The Government would now push for fresh European Union sanctions against Syria, he said, adding that Russia and China had committed a "betrayal of the Syrian people" by vetoing a resolution in the UN Security Council calling for a democratic transformation in Syria.

Mr Hague revealed that Britain will work to create a "Friends of Syria" international coalition, an initiative also backed by France and Germany. "The aim of such a group will be to coordinate intensified diplomatic and economic pressure on the regime, and to engage with Syrian opposition groups committed to a democratic future for the country," said Mr Hague.

The group will be similar to the "contact group" that coordinated international opposition to Col Gaddafi's regime but, facing repeated questions on the issue, Mr Hague stressed that the Government was not aiding the Free Syrian Army, the armed rebel group, or considering the creation of a no-fly zone as was enforced in Libya.

President Barack Obama also stressed that the West was not ready to use force again, while reiterating his call for Mr Assad to step down. "It is very important for us to try to resolve this without recourse to outside military intervention," he told NBC. "And I think that's possible."

However with Mr Assad intent on obliterating rebel areas and a high cost of civilian lives, Western allies and the Arab League could soon feel obliged to give greater consideration to providing material support to the FSA, a group consisting of poorly equipped army defectors.

Sir Malcolm Rifkind, the former Conservative foreign secretary, became the first prominent voice to call for assistance to be extended to armed rebels. "We should be talking about logistical, communications, intelligence and advice. It might not add up to a vast amount, but don't underestimate the impact on the morale of these extraordinarily courageous people in Syria," he told the Daily Telegraph.

European powers are already liaising regularly with civilian opposition groups such as the Syrian National Council and have provided training on reporting human rights abuses. But arming the opposition is a task likely to fall first to Qatar, which played a similar quiet but effective role with the Libyan opposition in Benghazi. Sir Malcolm said it "would be no surprise if some of our allies in the Arab world" were not already supplying or close to supplying the FSA.

Mr Hague said the British embassy in Syria would be kept open for the time being, as it provided a valuable source of information on the ground and a useful channel to "impress on some members of the regime the gravity of the situation".

He said the location of the embassy made its security easier to enforce compared to the American mission.
Posted by: Steve White || 02/07/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [267 views] Top|| File under:

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Tue 2012-02-07
  Blasts Rock N. Nigeria, Police Station Attacked
Mon 2012-02-06
  36 Civilians, 28 Troops Killed in Fresh Syria Violence
Sun 2012-02-05
  Expel Syrian Envoys, Says Arab League Official
Sat 2012-02-04
  Libya's ex-envoy to France dies in custody
Fri 2012-02-03
  Britain Appoints First Ambassador to Somalia in 21 Years
Thu 2012-02-02
  Three top terror leaders killed in the Philippines
Wed 2012-02-01
  US raids kill 15 militants in Yemen
Tue 2012-01-31
  12,000 BNP, Jamaat men charged with violence
Mon 2012-01-30
  Assad's family caught trying to escape the country, returned to Damascus
Sun 2012-01-29
  Nigerian military kills 11 militants in northeast
Sat 2012-01-28
  UN loses count on Syria killings
Fri 2012-01-27
  Sectarian clashes kill at least 22 in Yemen
Thu 2012-01-26
  Woman Dead as Bombs, Bullets Rain on Nigeria Police Station
Wed 2012-01-25
  SEALS Spring Two, Bag Nine
Tue 2012-01-24
  EU imposes sanctions on Iran oil

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