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Dronezap in South Wazoo send 18 TTP Jihadis to their rewards
Today's Headlines
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Afghan census dodges taboo topics
[Dawn] THERE are two questions Hajera Bashir does not ask as she goes door to door gathering census data in Ghor province in Afghanistan's freezing central highlands: which ethnic group residents belong to, and what language they speak at home.

With these taboo topics set aside, she quizzes families about everything else: their income and how many wives each man has, whether they can read and if their sons and daughters are in school, domestic details such as how they heat their homes, whether they have a toilet and if they keep chickens.

The shy 18-year-old is part of a critical but controversial effort to count the Afghan population for the first time since 1979.

Expected to take at least six years on a slow, province-by-province basis, it is possible only because it sidesteps tangled questions about the country's ethnic balance. Asking about language is avoided because it can be used as a proxy marker for ethnicity.

Still, the complexity of Afghanistan's ethnic politics means any kind of counting is controversial. The first results, from normally calm central Bamiyan province, showed an actual population barely half official estimates. The area is mostly home to Hazaras, a Shia minority who have often been persecuted in Sunni-dominated Afghanistan, and many took the findings as another form of attack.

"Death to the enemies of Bamiyan! The statistics are wrong!" shouted more than 1,000 demonstrators as they marched on UN offices in the small town this summer.

A previous attempt to end the decades-long wait for a count of the Afghan people, in 2008, was scrapped, with the government citing security problems. In December officials even dropped plans to unveil a new estimate of the population.

Although war has often put swaths of the country off-limits to statisticians, bitter ethnic politics have also played a role in slow progress, because of the risks that a population count might reduce the official size of some constituencies or expand those of rivals.

"If a politician sees that the ethnic group to which he or she belongs is less than expected, they will sometimes reject the data," said Abdul Rahman Ghafoori, head of the Central Statistics Office, who has the delicate job of balancing his country's need for decent data against the influence of groups who would rather details remain opaque or unchanged.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6499 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "Death to statistics!"
Posted by: Frank G || 01/06/2013 9:08 Comments || Top||

#2  Standard Deviationists must die!
Posted by: Shipman || 01/06/2013 13:16 Comments || Top||

#3  Analog splitters!
Posted by: Dopey Sinatra9196 || 01/06/2013 15:29 Comments || Top||

#4  Given the known AfPak reluctance to embrace difficult concepts like vaccines or civilization, I'm not suprised statistics causes problems. It has been said before, but Bayes repeating: math is hard.
Posted by: SteveS || 01/06/2013 18:46 Comments || Top||


Who knew?

HHHHMMMMM, HMMMMM, AFAIK no deadly attacks agz the Afghan Census Babes yet - I thought the [Paki]Hard Boyz demanded that only Men could do such work???

Posted by: JosephMendiola || 01/06/2013 20:42 Comments || Top||

Taliban Vow War if U.S. Stay in Afghanistan after 2014
[An Nahar] The Taliban on Saturday warned of a prolonged war in Afghanistan if any foreign troops stay after the end of 2014, as Kabul and Washington prepare to discuss the "residual" U.S. security presence.

President Barack Obama
Why can't I just eat my waffle?...
and President Hamid Maybe I'll join the Taliban Karzai
... A former Baltimore restaurateur, now 12th and current President of Afghanistan, displacing the legitimate president Rabbani in December 2004. He was installed as the dominant political figure after the removal of the Taliban regime in late 2001 in a vain attempt to put a Pashtun face on the successor state to the Taliban. After the 2004 presidential election, he was declared president regardless of what the actual vote count was. He won a second, even more dubious, five-year-term after the 2009 presidential election. His grip on reality has been slipping steadily since around 2007, probably from heavy drug use...
will hold talks in the U.S. next week on a long-term security pact between the two countries, with U.S. troops remaining in Afghanistan at the top of the agenda.

"If America wants to leave a small or large number of its troops for whatever length of time then it means war and destruction will continue in the region for that same length," the Taliban said in a statement.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6485 views] Top|| File under: Taliban

Posted by: Water Modem || 01/06/2013 4:20 Comments || Top||

#2  Hmm, what do the Taliban think they have now?
Posted by: Mike Ramsey || 01/06/2013 9:55 Comments || Top||

#3  Nation building, Mike Ramsey. But in Afghanistan it is hard to distinguish from war, since both end up looking like Nagasaki, 1945. The difference is Afghanistan started out looking about like that.
Posted by: Glenmore || 01/06/2013 10:10 Comments || Top||

#4  Yep, couple dozen low yield nukes should do it. Prevailing wind is to Packyland. Bonus!
Posted by: Zenobia Bluetooth1712 || 01/06/2013 10:48 Comments || Top||

#5  Looks like the 9000-from-10000 minima "safe" post-pullout US force in Afghanistan is still shrinking.


I'm interpreting the "6,000" figure to mean "+/-", mostly "-".

By definition, IMO the US Govt-DOD must have good- to-high confidence in Kabul Govt. + Afghan National Army, Police given the Taliban's threat of new war come 2014 + after iff even one US = US-NATO Soldier remains in Afghanistan???
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 01/06/2013 23:06 Comments || Top||

Africa Horn
Sudan, South Sudan reach agreement on Abyei, implementation of cooperation deal
[Xinhua] Sudan and South Sudan on Saturday agreed in Addis Ababa of Æthiopia to implement the items of security agreements and to set up civil institutions for Abyei area, official SUNA news agency reported.

"Sudan and South Sudan have agreed during the summit between the two countries' presidents Omar al-Bashir
Head of the National Congress Party. He came to power in 1989 when he, as a brigadier in the Sudanese army, led a group of officers in a bloodless military coup that ousted the government of Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi and eventually appointed himself president-for-life. He has fallen out with his Islamic mentor, Hasan al-Turabi, tried to impose shariah on the Christian and animist south, resulting in its secessesion, and attempted to Arabize Darfur by unleashing the barbaric Janjaweed on it. Sudan's potential prosperity has been pissed away in warfare that has left as many as 400,000 people dead and 2.5 million displaced. Omar has been indicted for genocide by the International Criminal Court but nothing is expected to come of it.
and Salva Kiir Mayardit to implement the item of security arrangements by breaking the link between the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) of South Sudan and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM)/ northern sector," the agency said in its mobile news service.

"The two sides have also agreed to speed up formation of the civil institutions for the disputed area of Abyei and set timetables for the implementation of the cooperation deal signed by the two countries in September last year," the report added.

Sudan's al-Bashir and his South Sudanese counterpart Kiir have met late Friday in the Æthiopian capital to push for progress in the stalled cooperation deal between the two countries in the presence of Æthiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Sudan

#1  A demilitarized zone will just be a free fire zone for non-state actors.
Posted by: phil_b || 01/06/2013 3:44 Comments || Top||

Africa North
Egypt to replace 10 ministers in cabinet reshuffle
Egypt will replace 10 ministers, state media reported on Saturday, in a cabinet reshuffle directed by Islamist President Mohammed Morsi in order to improve the country's struggling economy, dpa reported.

Finance and interior ministers are among the 10 who will be sworn in on Sunday, state television reported. Three of the candidates belong to Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood party. Mohamed Ibrahim will be in charge of the interior ministry, Hatem Abdel-Latif will be minister of transportation and Al-Morsi al-Sayed Hegazi will be appointed finance minister.

Morsi said in a recent speech that he had discussed with Prime Minister Hisham Qandil an imminent cabinet reshuffle so that the government could better deal with the country's economic and political problems.
Posted by: Steve White || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

Morsi in 2010: No peace with "descendants of apes and pigs"
Israeli-Palestinian negotiations are "a waste of time and opportunities" as Arabs and Muslims get nothing out of engagement with "the descendants of apes and pigs," current Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi asserted in September 2010, according to newly translated interviews published this week by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

In the first interview, aired on Lebanon's Al-Quds TV on September 23, 2010, Morsi denounced the Palestinian Authority as a creation of "the Zionist and American enemies for the sole purpose of opposing the will of the Palestinian people." Therefore, he stressed, "No reasonable person can expect any progress on this track."

"Either [you accept] the Zionists and everything they want, or else it is war," Morsi said, "This is what these occupiers of the land of Palestine know -- these blood-suckers, who attack the Palestinians, these warmongers, the descendants of apes and pigs."

In the result, according to MEMRI, Morsi called on Arabs and Muslims worldwide to "employ all forms of resistance against...those criminal Zionists, who attack Palestine and the Palestinians."

"Pressure should be exerted upon them," Morsi continued, so that Jews should "not be given any opportunity [to] stand on any Arab or Islamic land."

In a separate interview translated by MEMRI, aired on the same network on March 20, 2010, Morsi affirmed that "The Zionists have no right to the land of Palestine.... What they took before 1947-8 constitutes plundering, and what they are doing now is a continuation of this plundering. By no means do we recognize their Green Line. The land of Palestine belongs to the Palestinians, not to the Zionists."

He therefore called on the Islamic world "to confront this Zionist entity" and to severe "all ties of all kinds...with this plundering criminal entity," including a total boycott of Israel and the avoidance of "normalization of relations with it."

Morsi concluded that the Arab-Islamic world "want[s] a country for the Palestinians on the entire land of Palestine...[and] all the talk about a two-state solution and about peace is nothing but an illusion." The Jews, he said, "have been fanning the flames of civil strife wherever they were throughout history. They are hostile by nature.... The Zionists understood nothing but the language of force."
Posted by: Pappy || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  And we give Egypt $2B+ in aid every year. Go figure.
Posted by: Bob Trotsky9235 || 01/06/2013 0:53 Comments || Top||

#2  By Obama administration standards, a "moderate" and another "Arab Spring" success story.
Posted by: Besoeker || 01/06/2013 5:07 Comments || Top||

#3  Wasnt Jews living on that land long before Islam was invented?They seem to overlook this fact.
Posted by: Chunky Snerenter4744 || 01/06/2013 7:03 Comments || Top||

#4  Only descendants?

Mr. Morsi, you are a PIG and an APE, and a screaming assh@le as well (apologies to pigs, apes, and assh@les everywhere).

So guess Egypt will have no peace with you ....
Posted by: Barbara || 01/06/2013 9:17 Comments || Top||

#5  No peace with the descendants of apes and pigs? Works for me. That is pretty much all of the Islamic Brotherhood anyway so let the hunting season commence!
Posted by: DarthVader || 01/06/2013 10:21 Comments || Top||

#6  We ought to release a few hundred (later to be thousands with how they breed) feral hogs and javelinas loose in lower Egypt. They take to desert conditions pretty well, play havoc with the local agriculture and are a son-of-a-gun to control.

Plus, who would clean up any carcasses of their 'deceased'?
Posted by: Mullah Richard || 01/06/2013 12:09 Comments || Top||

#7  Any comments about this statement from O administration?

***chirp chirp???***

Hmmmm. Nothing, like being in a bell jar with a vacuum pulled inside.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 01/06/2013 16:14 Comments || Top||

#8  Glad to hear you are ok AP.
Posted by: Besoeker || 01/06/2013 16:21 Comments || Top||

#9  I thought Arabs claimed to be descinded from Abraham, just like the Jews, but what do I kn ow?
Posted by: Deacon Blues || 01/06/2013 17:34 Comments || Top||

#10  Boesoker---did not feel a thing from the SE Alaska Earthquake. Thanks for your concern.

Deacon---the sons of Abraham parted ways long ago.

Posted by: Alaska Paul || 01/06/2013 18:56 Comments || Top||

Caribbean-Latin America
Chavez to Stay in Power Even Without Taking Oath, sez Maduro
Ailing Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez will remain in power even if he fails to attend a ceremony next week in which he’s scheduled to be sworn in for another term, his Vice President Nicolas Maduro said.

Opponents of the communist socialist president, who is recovering from cancer surgery in Cuba, are distorting the constitution by saying that Chavez must show up for the Jan. 10 swearing-in ceremony or be declared ineligible to govern, Maduro said last night. The nation’s charter is flexible,
It's a living constitution...
and if needed the Supreme Court can set the date, manner and location Chavez will be sworn in for the third, six-year term he won in October by a landslide, he said.

“Chavez on that day remains in power and will be sworn in whenever possible,” Maduro said in an hour-long interview broadcast on state television, warning the opposition against trying to carry out a “coup” by interpreting to its advantage the charter’s provisions for a presidential succession. “The constitution speaks for itself.”

The comments by Maduro set the stage for a legal dispute with the opposition and signal that the ailing leader’s allies are unlikely to push him out of office even as calls for a snap election grow louder.

“It seems like the only way Chavez will step down is if he dies or he himself gives up power,” said Bret Rosen, who travels frequently to Venezuela as a Latin America strategist at Standard Chartered Plc in New York.
Oh rreeeaaaallllllyyy?
Venezuelan bonds have rallied over the past year, with yields on the state oil company falling to a record low this week, on speculation that Chavez won’t complete another term. Such a move would pave the way for an end of nationalizations, currency controls and other policies blamed for capital flight, food shortages and inflation of more than 18 percent.
They're trying to tell you something, people...
Maduro, the president’s preferred successor, accused the opposition of carrying out a “dirty war” against Venezuela’s democracy by spreading rumors through fake Twitter accounts opened in officials’ names and sending letters to foreign diplomats warning of a government-staged coup if Chavez fails to return next week. Such actions could stir violence, he warned.
Unfortunately the opposition there is about as clueless as the Pubs here, so they aren't smart enough to open fake Twitter accounts.
“They’re playing with fire,” Maduro said, citing the risk of a repeat of street riots in Bogota that left hundreds dead following the murder in 1948 of Colombian presidential candidate Jorge Gaitan, a politician popular with that nation’s poor.
And if the people don't riot, Maduro will goad them...
Opposition leaders say that if the 58-year-old Chavez doesn’t attend next week’s inauguration, National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello, in compliance with the constitution, must decide whether his absence is a temporary or permanent one. The latter scenario would trigger an election within 30 days, but in either case Cabello must take over the presidency on a caretaker basis, they say.

Cabello was elected to remain as president of the assembly today.

“I swear to do all I need to do to fulfill the word of this revolution’s leader,” Cabello said in a nationally televised address after the vote. “Chavez was re-elected and will continue being president beyond Jan. 10.”
Unless he dies before then, in which case they'll get a glass case in which he'll be stuffed and mounted, like Lenin...
Ramon Jose Medina, deputy head of the opposition alliance, said Jan. 3 that Chavez’s failure to swear in on Jan. 10, without Cabello taking over the reins of the government, would constitute a government-staged “coup.”

Maduro last night said such an interpretation is “false,” echoing comments last month by Cabello -- his biggest rival in the Chavista camp -- that the opposition should “forget about January 10.” None of the conditions for the president’s “absolute absence” have been met, so long as Chavez remains alive, holds on to power and isn’t certified unfit to carry out his duties by a commission of medical experts working under lawmakers’ supervision, Maduro said.

“If the status quo continues January 10th you’re moving in the direction of a constitutional crisis,” said Rosen.
Posted by: Steve White || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Things will only worsen should Chavez die. I foresee a new leader much worse than Chavez. Anti Western hostility will be the rallying cry. Another Castro being born.
Posted by: Dale || 01/06/2013 8:12 Comments || Top||

#2  Update
Venezuela faces turmoil as Chavez worsens
Venezuela faced political turmoil and the possibility of new elections on Friday when it became increasingly unlikely that President Hugo Chavez would recover his health in time to be inaugurated for a new term next week.
Posted by: tipper || 01/06/2013 8:55 Comments || Top||

#3  "Pay no attention to that man pesky document behind the curtain!"
Posted by: PBMcL || 01/06/2013 10:37 Comments || Top||

#4  Coming up:

Night of the Living Dead

Posted by: Alaska Paul || 01/06/2013 16:12 Comments || Top||

#5  HUGO = almost NOT-ARIEL SHARON???
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 01/06/2013 18:58 Comments || Top||

#6  Of course he won't have to take any oaths, it's so, so, Legal and we won't have it.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 01/06/2013 19:01 Comments || Top||

Pakistan tribesmen mark 'black day' for late Mullah Nazir
[Dawn] PESHAWAR: Thousands of Pak rustics on Saturday protested the killing of warlord Mullah Nazir and hoisted black flags to mark his death, officials said.

The protesters also roundly condemned US drone strikes, and demanded Islamabad summon the US ambassador and lodge an official protest over the myrmidon commander's killing this week.

"All shops were closed in Wana, the headquarters of South Wazoo tribal district, and the rustics protested against the killing of warlord Mullah Nazir," Amir Nawaz, a local administration official, told AFP.

Nazir, killed late Wednesday in a US drone strike, was the main myrmidon leader in the tribal district of South Waziristan, where he plotted attacks on US and NATO
...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. A cautionary tale of cost-benefit analysis....
troops and reportedly sheltered al Qaeda operatives.

"More than 3,000 rustics, carrying black flags, later marched towards Azam Warsak, around seven kilometres (four miles) west of Wana and passed a resolution against the US," Nawaz said.

Another security official said the protester's resolution termed Nazir's killing as an effort to destroy peace in the region.

"Mullah Nazir was not a terrorist, he was a patriot Pak and was fighting a war for independence," the resolution said.

The statement added that Pakistain must protest against the killing and work to end drone strikes.

The rustics, belonging to Wazir and Sulemankhel tribes, also vowed to continue Nazir's mission, saying his killing would not bring an end to the conflict.

A close associate of Nazir and myrmidon commander who goes by the name Salahuddin Ayubi was appointed his successor on Friday.

Nazir had made a peace deal with Islamabad, which congratulated him for expelling Uzbeks from South Waziristan, but had testy relations with local Taliban forces.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6471 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in Pakistan

Malik hints terrorism threat for Qadri's long march
[Dawn] Federal Interior Minster Rehman Malik
Pak politician, Interior Minister under the Gilani government. Malik is a former Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) intelligence officer who rose to head the FIA during Benazir Bhutto's second tenure. Malik was tossed from his FIA job in 1998 after documenting the breath-taking corruption of the Sharif family. By unhappy coincidence Nawaz Sharif became PM at just that moment and Malik moved to London one step ahead of the button men. He had to give up the interior ministry job because he held dual Brit citizenship.
on Saturday said there are threats that Death Eaters might target the Tehrik Minhaj-ul-Koran (TMQ) long march scheduled for Jan 14, DawnNews reported.

Speaking to media representatives, Malik said he will inform TMQ chief Dr Tahirul Qadri about the security threats in an upcoming meeting with him.

He said Dr Qadri will be allowed to bring as big a crowd as he may desire as, he added, "we have been welcoming him right from the day one."

The minister said although Dr Qadri has not yet demanded any special security arrangements for the march, however, sufficient security will be provided to participants of the march due to threats.Federal Interior Minster Rehman Malik on Saturday said there are threats that Death Eaters might target the Tehrik Minhaj-ul-Koran (TMQ) long march scheduled for Jan 14, DawnNews reported.

Speaking to media representatives, Malik said he will inform TMQ chief Dr Tahirul Qadri about the security threats in an upcoming meeting with him.

He said Dr Qadri will be allowed to bring as big a crowd as he may desire as, he added, "we have been welcoming him right from the day one."

The minister said although Dr Qadri has not yet demanded any special security arrangements for the march, however, sufficient security will be provided to participants of the march due to threats.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

ASWJ plans long march
[Dawn] Leaders of Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ) on Friday vowed to participate in the long march to Islamabad planned by the outfit's central leadership.
That's the false nose and mustache version of "banned" organization Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistain...
Addressing a presser at the press club, ASWJ general secretary Asim Ali Shah and vice-president Maulana Abdul Qayyum Haidri said that ASWJ central leader Maulana Mohammad Ahmed Lodhyanvi would lead a long march along with other religious and politicians from Bloody Karachi
...formerly the capital of Pakistain, now merely its most important port and financial center. It is among the largest cities in the world, with a population of 18 million, most of whom hate each other and many of whom are armed and dangerous...
. It would reach Hyderabad on Jan 11. They said that long march would reach Islamabad on Jan 18.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6492 views] Top|| File under: Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan

#1  D *** NG IT, does this mean ASWJ is NOT "ASAHI SHIMBUN WEEKLY JOURNAL"???

I knew it!
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 01/06/2013 20:45 Comments || Top||

Militants can strike at will, admits KP govt
[Dawn] The strength of faceless myrmidons has increased so alarmingly that now, they can reach anywhere they want to carry out their activities, said provincial information minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain on Friday.

"The time has come to take the final decision on whether to hold dialogue with faceless myrmidons or to begin a meaningful operation against them," the minister told the provincial assembly on a point of order about the recent acts of militancy, especially the killing of seven aid workers, including six women, in Swabi.

Mr Hussain said a lot had been spoken in condemnation of Death Eater attacks and therefore, it was direly needed to take militancy to its logical end.

He said there were two options with the government either to hold dialogue with faceless myrmidons and if it was not possible, then the second option was intensive operation against them.

The minister said all political parties and security agencies should get together to make an effective strategy before the government held dialogue with faceless myrmidons or went for operation against them.

He said former prime minister and Pakistain Mohammedan League-Nawaz chief Nawaz Sharif
... served two non-consecutive terms as prime minister, heads the Pakistain Moslem League (Nawaz). Noted for his spectacular corruption, the 1998 Pak nuclear test, border war with India, and for being tossed by General Musharraf...
had favoured the stand of ANP chief Asfandyar Wali Khan, who pushed the country's politicianship for taking decisive steps against militancy.

He urged the leadership of other political groups to come forward for ending the evil of militancy forever.

Mr Hussain said militancy had increased in the province so dangerously that all other issues had become non-issues.

He said liquidation of vaccinators and aid workers in the province, assault on Bacha Khan International Airport, liquidation of minister Bashir Bilour and the kidnapping and subsequent killing of Levies personnel in a short span of time showed how strong faceless myrmidons had grown.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

Tahirul Qadri does not have US support: Hoagland
[Dawn] The United States' envoy to Pakistain, Richard Hoagland, on Saturday dismissed the impression that the US was supporting Tehrik-e-Minhajul Koran chief Tahirul Qadri.

Speaking to media representatives in Islamabad after attending a function, Richard Hoagland said that his country does not support any political party or individual, including Tahirul Qadri, reported APP.

Hoagland said that the US was an advocate of democracy and transparent election in the world.

Moreover, the US envoy said that any decision regarding military operation in North Wazoo would be taken by Pakistain itself.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

Al-Iraqiyah Party calls for resignation of Iraqi PM
Good luck with that...
Head of the Iraqi Party Al-Iraqiyah, Iyad Allawi calls for resignation of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, "Al Jazeera" TV channel reported on Saturday. According to the TV channel, Allawi also said that the country needs to hold new parliamentary elections.

"Maliki government can not take the country out of economic and political crisis," Allawi said.

Demonstrations against Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki are underway in different cities of Iraq for several weeks. Protesters demand release of political prisoners and provision of the freedoms and rights to the Sunni population of the country. It is reported that the demonstrations are held in major provinces of the country, particularly in Anbar and Samara. The demonstrators gathered on central squares after Friday prayers.

The Sunnis and Shiites held common Friday prayers yesterday, where influential Sunni and Shiite leaders participated, in order to protest against Maliki's policy.
Posted by: Steve White || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

Southeast Asia
US-funded anti-terror squad in Indonesia under criticism for killing suspected militants

Indonesia's U.S.-funded police anti-terror squad has killed seven suspected militants in recent days, triggering renewed allegations that the force is not trying to take suspects alive -- a trend that appears to be fueling the very extremism the predominantly Muslim country is trying to counter.
Ahah. Yes. Indeed. If you don't try to take killers alive that only makes more killers. Which leaves you with the problem of how to get rid of killers if you're not going to kill them and they're blazin' away at you. Think of something, quick, because that's live ammunition.
Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Boy Rafli Amar said Sunday that no shots were fired against officers
"Don't stick your head up, Weranto! They'll blow it off!"
during three related raids Friday and Saturday in eastern Indonesia, but that the suspects in at least one of the locations had explosives that were "ready" to be detonated. He said that officers from the anti-terror squad, known as Densus 88, had followed procedures because the suspects were endangering their lives, but gave few details.
Posted by: tipper || 01/06/2013 10:57 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  the force is not trying to take suspects alive

Of course not, why bother with a trial, They'll lie and Bribe their way out.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 01/06/2013 12:04 Comments || Top||

#2  Update
Indonesia Police Advance on New Terror Front
Posted by: tipper || 01/06/2013 13:15 Comments || Top||

Bolstered by 16 Russian warships, Assad nixes dialogue with "Western puppets"
DEBKA sprinkle with salt
Does Russia have that many sea-going tugs?
Posted by: tipper || 01/06/2013 11:03 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6491 views] Top|| File under:

#1  He then invited “those who have not betrayed Syria” to a conference of reconciliation, followed by a referendum on a new constitution, the formation of a government and an amnesty.

After 60K dead by his forces, who is the amnesty for?
Posted by: Zenobia Bluetooth1712 || 01/06/2013 11:58 Comments || Top||

#2  Who do you think it's for, ZB?
Posted by: Mullah Richard || 01/06/2013 12:02 Comments || Top||

#3  According to a Chinese researcher who was subsequently imprisoned for revealing state secrets, the Chinese have, in the past, spent an estimated $10b on funding insurgencies in Southeast (ex-Indochina) over several decades, during a time of famine in China, back when $10b was real money, in the 50's through the late 70's. If China were funding Assad (without attribution, as with the Southeast Asian efforts), it would not be anything new with respect to Chinese policy. Given the difficulty involved in keeping an economy running (let alone gathering tax revenues) during a shooting war covering the entire country, Assad is probably getting funding from Iran, Russia or China, if not all three, in order to keep paying and supplying his troops, just as the rebels are getting funds and weaponry from Sunni governments and the West.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 01/06/2013 13:05 Comments || Top||

#4  Some Russian diplomat mentioned in the JPost:

Russia has concentrated five landing ships in the eastern Mediterranean in a show of force meant to deter Western nations from intervening militarily in Syria, The Sunday Times quoted a Russian diplomat as saying.

According to the report, the ships are carrying military vehicles and hundreds of Russian marines, and are being accompanied by combat vessels.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 01/06/2013 13:11 Comments || Top||

#5  No worries Zhang Fei. Six months ago the US State Department announced "the Assad regime would crumble within 36 hours". Of course this is the same State Department which helped produce the Benghazi cock-up.
Posted by: Besoeker || 01/06/2013 13:14 Comments || Top||

#6  Zhang what would be the point of (current) Chinese aid to Syria?
Posted by: Shipman || 01/06/2013 13:18 Comments || Top||

#7  #6 Zhang what would be the point of (current) Chinese aid to Syria? Posted by Shipman

Multifactorial [new Krauthammer word] answers Ship. In no order of priority: (1.) Opportunity to improve relations with Russia. (2.) Opportunity to whack AQ and radical mooslims. (3.) Opportunity to counter US and western support for the mooslim "Arab Spring". Opportunity for post-conflict economic trade.
Posted by: Besoeker || 01/06/2013 13:27 Comments || Top||

#8  ..and cause its things that Great Powers(tm) do.

Still smarting after that 19th Century European imperialism thingy in the Heavenly Kingdom are we?
Posted by: Procopius2k || 01/06/2013 13:59 Comments || Top||

#9  Zhang what would be the point of (current) Chinese aid to Syria?

Same reason that the Chinese were funding insurgencies in Southeast Asia, supporting allies that might one day become satellites of the Chinese state. Pretty standard "setting one barbarian against another" policy. In antiquity, it used to do the same kind of thing. In times of prosperity, the Chinese have always supported allies abroad with generous subsidies. Mao's policy was more or less a continuation of traditional Chinese doctrine.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 01/06/2013 14:03 Comments || Top||

#10  Still smarting after that 19th Century European imperialism thingy in the Heavenly Kingdom are we?

The Chinese were imperialists when most of the 19th century European powers were under the Roman boot, and barely evolved from running around in animal skins. For thousands of years, the Northeast Asian region defined "balance of power", until that broke down temporarily with the creation of the unitary state, 2200 years ago, that we now call China. Even that China was 1/4 of China's present size.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 01/06/2013 14:09 Comments || Top||

#11  OOOOOOOOOOOO, you can just hear "AGENT 86" = MAXWELL SMART saying "Its just not Nice-ness"!
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 01/06/2013 20:35 Comments || Top||

#12  Multifactorial [new Krauthammer word] answers Ship. In no order of priority:

Also, support of Iranian foreign policy (said foreign policy supports the Assad gov't.) and an attempt to deflect US and Western focus from the Western Pacific region.
Posted by: Pappy || 01/06/2013 20:45 Comments || Top||

Syria's Bashar al-Assad calls on foreign countries to end support for rebels
Bashar al-Assad has pledged to continue fighting "terrorist" violence and urged foreign countries to end support for his enemies while also offering a national dialogue and a constitutional referendum to end Syria's bloody crisis.

The Syrian president used an hour-long speech in Damascus on Sunday to propose what he called a comprehensive plan that included an "expanded government". But there was no sign he was prepared to step down as the first stage of a political transition – a demand of all opposition groups. "I will go one day, but the country remains," he said.

The Syrian leader referred repeatedly to plots against his country and the role of al-Qaida, long-portrayed as the leading element in what began as a popular uprising in March 2011. Syria was not facing a revolution but a "gang of criminals", he said.

"We are now in a state of war in every sense of the word," the president told supporters. "This war targets Syria using a handful of Syrians and many foreigners. Thus, this is a war to defend the nation."

It was hard to see how his latest speech offered even a glimmer of hope for a way out of the bloody impasse between the regime and rebels in a conflict that the UN said last week had claimed 60,000 lives over 21 months.
Posted by: tipper || 01/06/2013 10:13 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6469 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Dictators like to create the illusion of an outside threat to unify their nation (e.g. Argentina's junta and the Falkland's; that worked out so well for the jaunta). In Syria's case, the people are more concerned about the threat to themselves caused by pencil-neck himself.
Posted by: Mike Ramsey || 01/06/2013 12:00 Comments || Top||

Saudi spy chief calls for al-Qaeda leadership of anti-Syria militants
[Iran Press TV] The Soddy Arabia
...a kingdom taking up the bulk of the Arabian peninsula. Its primary economic activity involves exporting oil and soaking Islamic rubes on the annual hajj pilgrimage. The country supports a large number of princes in whatcha might call princely splendor. When the oil runs out the rest of the world is going to kick sand in their national face...
n spy chief has ordered al-Qaeda's affiliate in Syria, al-Nusra Front, to take leadership of the foreign-backed snuffies in Syria through assassinating the members of the so-called Free Syrian Army.

According to Syrian media, Prince Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud has decided to bring the snuffies fighting the Syrian forces under the umbrella of al-Nusra Front.

According to Prince Bandar's orders, any jihad boy commander who refuses to join the terrorist group should be assassinated.

Last month, the US State Department designated al-Nusra Front group as a terror organization linked to al-Qaeda in Iraq.

Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia are reportedly arming and funding snuffies fighting the Damascus
...Capital of the last remaining Baathist regime in the world...
government to implement Western countries' plans in the Arab county.
Posted by: Fred || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6496 views] Top|| File under: al-Nusra

Posted by: Water Modem || 01/06/2013 4:50 Comments || Top||

#2  Oh and is this an admission that Saudi is behind 911?
Posted by: Water Modem || 01/06/2013 5:27 Comments || Top||

#3  Bandar is back ?
Posted by: Besoeker || 01/06/2013 5:36 Comments || Top||

#4  Why do we think Saudi are our ally in the region?
Posted by: Chunky Snerenter4744 || 01/06/2013 7:13 Comments || Top||

#5  ..oil. Why do you think they're so nervous about fracking?
Posted by: Procopius2k || 01/06/2013 8:11 Comments || Top||

#6  "Press TV is state-funded and is a division of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB).

The annual budget of Press TV is 250 billion rials (more than 25 million US$).[11]

Press TV broadcasts news reports and analyses which are close to the official position of the Iranian government, and its programs are monitored and regulated by the Islamic Republic. Although there have been attempts to establish private, independent media outlets in Iran, notably by former Iranian Presidential candidate Mehdi Karroubi, the 1979 Constitution of the Islamic Republic mandates that "all broadcasting must exclusively be government-operated.""

-- Wikipedia

And the Iranian government just loves the Saudis so excuse me if I doubt the veracity of the report.
Posted by: Mike Ramsey || 01/06/2013 9:51 Comments || Top||

#7  Water Modem, I like Blood, Sweat, and Tears version better.
Posted by: Deacon Blues || 01/06/2013 17:39 Comments || Top||

#8  Exactly, B. When did Bandar reappear?
Posted by: Classical_Liberal || 01/06/2013 19:20 Comments || Top||

#9  Why do we think Saudi are our ally in the region?

For various and sundry regions, Lord Rhetorical.

"Ally' implies that there is common interest present, as in "the USSR was an ally during World War II". It is much different than "friend"; something that does not exist in the world of foreign policy.
Posted by: Pappy || 01/06/2013 20:48 Comments || Top||

#10  Yokay, I'll bite - does this mean the Saudis like + trust PRO-QAEDA AL-NUSRA BUT N-O-T THE similaRLY PRO-QAEDA AQAP/AQIY???

I'm interpreting this Artic to mean that despite any Diplomatic, MSM rhetoric to the contrary, THAT ONCE AGAIN NO ONE REALLY WANTS BABY ASSAD + REGIME TO LOSE OR LEAVE VEE THE RADICALIST-ISLAMIST ALTERNATIVE.

Not the Saudis, not the Israelis, not Iran or the Turks, not the Russians or Chinese, not even the US-NATO ...

SAVE FOR THE BAMMER ADMIN + HOMELAND-HAPPY KURDS, wid the Kurds being trusted more than the Bammer!

Posted by: JosephMendiola || 01/06/2013 23:23 Comments || Top||

Syrian president to give speech - state media
Syrian President Pencilneck Bashar al-Assad will deliver a speech on Sunday, the first major public address since fighting broke out between government troops and rebels on the outskirts of Damascus, dpa reported.
A new opportunity to mock the man...
The state-run SANA news agency reported that al-Assad will give a speech "on the latest developments in Syria and the region," without providing further details.

The rebels have been fighting for control of the Damascus suburbs for months, raising doubts that al-Assad will be able to maintain his grip on the capital. Rebels have also recently claimed major gains in several areas of Syria, mainly in the north near the border with Turkey.
Posted by: Steve White || 01/06/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

Posted by: Water Modem || 01/06/2013 3:37 Comments || Top||

Who's in the News
4Govt of Pakistan
2al-Qaeda in Pakistan
1al-Qaeda in North Africa
1Govt of Sudan
1Govt of Syria
1Iraqi Baath Party
1Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan
1Arab Spring

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Sun 2013-01-06
  Dronezap in South Wazoo send 18 TTP Jihadis to their rewards
Sat 2013-01-05
  Syria jets, troops wage offensive on rebels near capital
Fri 2013-01-04
  New U.S. Drone Strike Kills Three Qaida Suspects in Yemen
Thu 2013-01-03
  Iran to Citizens: Flee Isfahan
Wed 2013-01-02
  Fourteen Killed as Nigerian Troops Clash with Islamists
Tue 2013-01-01
  Pakistan: Six charity workers shot dead
Mon 2012-12-31
  Qaeda in Yemen offers bounty for killing US ambassador, troops
Sun 2012-12-30
  Pakistan reports 21 tribal policemen kidnapped, found dead
Sat 2012-12-29
  At Least 15 Killed in Sect Attack in North Nigeria
Fri 2012-12-28
  Militants kill two, kidnap 22 Pakistani soldiers
Thu 2012-12-27
  Somalia sets 100 days for Al Shabab militants to surrender
Wed 2012-12-26
  6 Killed in Attack on Nigerian Church
Tue 2012-12-25
  Drone Strikes Kill Six Qaida Suspects in Yemen
Mon 2012-12-24
  Tunisia arrests 16 al-Qaeda suspects
Sun 2012-12-23
  Egypt vice-president resigns on final day of referendum

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