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LeJ claims twin attacks
Today's Headlines
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Page 2: WoT Background
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Page 6: Politix
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Africa North
Anger in southern Egypt over Islamist governor
Egyptian tourism workers and residents of the ancient city of Luxor are voicing anger after an Islamist linked to a former Islamic militant group that carried out the city's deadliest terrorist attack, killing nearly 60 tourists in the 1990s, was appointed governor of their province.

Workers and Luxor politicians said Monday they plan to seal off the office of the governor to prevent Adel el-Khayat from entering.

El-Khayat belongs to the Construction and Development party, the political arm of Gamaa Islamiya, which waged an armed insurgency against the state in the 1990s, attacking police, Copts and tourists. In 1997 the group killed 58 tourists visiting Luxor's Hatshepsut temple. The group has since forsworn violence. El-Khayat was appointed Sunday by Islamist President Mohammed Morsi among 17 new governors.
Posted by: tipper || 06/17/2013 13:50 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [323 views] Top|| File under:

#1  truly remarkable

after the nov 1997 massacre in which many of the dead were found to have been mutilated with knives and/or axes, the gamaa islamiya (the Islamic gang or the islamic group) had several responses when public opinion condemned the massacre

- we just meant to take them hostage, some of our gang got out of control
- it was a break-away faction of our gang

when those excuses didn't work they tried these

- the Jews did it
- Mubarak's guys did it to make us look bad
- people were killed somewhere else and brought here to make us look bad
Posted by: lord garth || 06/17/2013 17:40 Comments || Top||


Qaida N. Africa Branch Confirms Death in Mali of Leader Abou Zeid
[An Nahar] Al-Qaeda's north African branch confirmed that one of its top leaders, Abdelhamid Abou Zeid, was killed in fighting in Mali, three months after La Belle France announced his death, according to a statement published Sunday.

Algerian-born Abou Zeid, considered one of the most radical leaders of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), was killed "on the battlefield defending Umma (the Mohammedan community) and sharia law," according to a statement carried by the private Mauritanian news agency ANI. It gave no date for his death.

Gay Paree had announced in March that Abou Zeid was killed in fighting with its forces after La Belle France led an offensive to rout al-Qaeda-linked Islamist groups from northern Mali.

Both La Belle France and Chad, whose troops were also involved in the offensive, said the 46-year-old bully boy was killed at the end of February.

"It is the first time that an AQIM statement has officially referred to the death of Abou Zeid," said ANI director Mohamed Mahmoud Ould Abou al-Maali, a specialist on the Islamist group.

In March however, Algerian television said that al-Qaeda had named a replacement for Abou Zeid, Algerian national Djamel Okacha.

Abou Zeid had a reputation as a severe, aloof character with an unflinching capacity for violence when required.

Born in Debdeb in Algeria, close to the border with Libya, Abou Zeid was a young activist in the FIS Islamist movement that won the country's first democratic elections in 1991 but was denied power. He then disappeared underground for most of the 1990s.

He re-emerged spectacularly in 2003 as second in command of the GSPC group which kidnapped dozens of foreigners in southern Algeria, and that would later, along with several other organizations, evolve into AQIM.

Latterly, Abou Zeid -- whose real name was Mohamed Ghdir according to Algerian court documents -- was considered a deputy to AQIM's "Saharan emir" Yahia Djouadi and commanded a katiba, or battalion, of fighters from Mauritania, Algeria and Mali known as Tareq ibn Ziyad, named after an eighth-century Mohammedan military commander.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [295 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in North Africa


Egypt Preacher Handed Suspended Jail Term for Burning Bible
[An Nahar] A court in the Egyptian capital on Sunday handed an Islamist preacher accused of insulting Christianity an 11-year suspended jail sentence.
He must be killed!
Ahmed Mohammed Abdullah had been charged with ripping up and burning a copy of the Bible during a protest outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo against the anti-Islam film, "Innocence of Musselmens", that was produced in the U.S.
Blasphemy! Disrespect! Mopery! DOPERY!
The court handed Abdullah an 11-year suspended sentence for insulting religion, disturbing public order and defamation.
"We were gonna kill him but we suspended the sentence."
His son was also tried at the same time and received an eight-year suspended sentence. The pair can appeal.

The preacher, known as Abu Islam, has become renowned in Egypt for his fiery
...a single two-syllable word carrying connotations of both incoherence and viciousness. A fiery delivery implies an audience of rubes and yokels, preferably forming up into a mob...
diatribes against Christians and the country's secular opposition.

Egyptian law forbids insults against recognized religions. A court sentenced a Christian last December to three years in prison for posting online segments of Innocence of Musselmens.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [327 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring

#1  Only "Suspended", wonder what would happen if it was a Koran? (Silly question)
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 06/17/2013 10:19 Comments || Top||


Arabia
Saudi Arabia Wants Missiles for Syrian Rebels
[An Nahar] 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 the Soddy national face...
plans to supply the Syrian opposition with anti-aircraft missiles to counter Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Horror of Homs...
's air force, German news weekly Der Spiegel reported Sunday.

The article, citing a classified report received by the German foreign intelligence service and the German government last week, said Riyadh was looking at sending European-made Mistral-class MANPADS, or man-portable air-defense systems.

Der Spiegel noted the shoulder-launched surface-to-air missiles can target low-flying aircraft including helicopters and had given mujahideen fighters in Afghanistan a decisive edge against Soviet troops in the 1980s.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [456 views] Top|| File under: al-Nusra

#1  I'm once again interpreting this as another sign that the Bammer is acting "too little, too late" in Syria, as requests for AAMS/MANPADS were similarly demanded back in the day for both the Contras + the anti-Soviet insurgent groups in the 1980's whom had to be based mostly outside of Sandinista-controlled Nicaragua + Soviet-controlled Afghanistan.

IMO THE US-ALLIES ARE UNOFFICIALLY ACKNOWLEDGING THAT THE ANTI-ASSAD SYRIAN REBELS HAVE INDEED LOST OR FAILED TO OVERTHROW BABY ASSAD, + ARE THUS PREPARING TO REORG + REVITALIZE THEM TO CONTINUE THE FIGHT AGZ ASSAD FROM OUTSIDE SYRIA PROPER [Iraq? Jordan? Turkey? KSA?].

This will not end well.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/17/2013 1:35 Comments || Top||

#2  Shoulder-launched surface-to-air missiles can target low-flying aircraft including helicopters and they can also target Western passenger planes.

I suspect if they are given to the rebels they will end out doing both.

Posted by: BernardZ || 06/17/2013 12:00 Comments || Top||

#3  Soddies playing with fire are likely to get their fingers burned. Then they'll expect the US to save their bacon. Oooops! Did I say that? Yeah, I did. But this time I'd let 'em fry. Sorry, Abdul. I just don't give a rat's ass anymore.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 06/17/2013 12:04 Comments || Top||

#4  To me this suggests that the rebels are indeed Al Queda and Saudi Arabia doesn't really care if we know which side they are on anymore.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 06/17/2013 15:09 Comments || Top||

#5  How much longer will this war go on?

Will the "rebels" go guerilla? That would seem to be the surest way to keep it going, especially if they target the Iranians.

IMHO Assad has to stay in power to insure that they self-annihilate. If the rebels win then Israel becomes the real focus and all hell could/would break loose. I'd like to see just enough internal pressure on Assad to keep him concentrating on internal issues.
Posted by: AlanC || 06/17/2013 19:52 Comments || Top||


Britain
Boris Johnson: Don't arm the Syria maniacs
[TELEGRAPH.CO.UK] Arming the Syrian rebels would be disastrous because Britannia would be "pressing weapons into the hands of maniacs", says Boris Johnson.

The Mayor of London warns David Cameron
... has stated that he is certainly a big Thatcher fan, but I don't know whether that makes me a Thatcherite, which means he's not. Since he is not deeply ideological he lacks core principles and is easily led. He has been described as certainly not a Pitt, Elder or Younger, but he does wear a nice suit so maybe he's Beau Brummel ...
that the UK must not use Syria as an "arena for muscle-flexing" and says that any weapons sent to the country's opposition could end up in the hands of al-Qaeda.

His comments come after several leading figures opposed any move by Mr Cameron to join President Barack Obama
I am not a dictator!...
in providing greater assistance to the forces fighting Bashir al-Assad, the Syrian leader.

President Vladimir Putin
...Second and fourth President of the Russian Federation and the first to remain sober. Putin is credited with bringing political stability and re-establishing something like the rule of law, which occasionally results in somebody dropping dead from polonium poisoning. Under Putin, a new group of business magnates controlling significant swathes of Russia's economy has emerged, all of whom have close personal ties to Putin. The old bunch, without close personal ties to Putin, are in jail or in exile or dead...
of Russia, whose nation provides arms to the Assad regime, criticised the Prime Minister for considering arming rebels who "eat the organs" of their enemies.

The Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg also cautioned Mr Cameron against arming the Free Syrian Army, saying that if it were a good idea, Britannia would have done it already. The former head of the Army, Lord Dannatt, said he feared any such assistance would lead Britannia into further intervention, while the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, urged Mr Cameron to "tread very warily".

Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [332 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

#1  Uh, uh, the FINE YOUNG CANNIBALS???

gut nuthin.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/17/2013 1:24 Comments || Top||


Caucasus/Russia/Central Asia
Vlad Putin speaks out on Syrian rebel dietary habits - Breitbart
Posted by: Elmelet Cholugum1309 || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [355 views] Top|| File under: al-Nusra

#1  HHHMMMMM, HHHMMMM, wehell, AFAIK we're still in the midst of the "Zombie Apocalypse", as per the MSM-Net.

Nostradamus = the Bible's Book of Revelation = provide apocalyptic descriptions of Man becoming a "Maneater", or "Men wid Lion's Teeth".

So now comeths Vlaaaad.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/17/2013 3:08 Comments || Top||

#2  Is that what they mean when they say Brave Lions of Islam?
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 06/17/2013 16:03 Comments || Top||


China-Japan-Koreas
N. Korea proposes high-level talks with U.S.
SEOUL -- North Korea proposed high-level talks with the United States on Sunday, days after its planned talks with South Korea broke down over the level of their chief delegates.
Typical for them. They try to hold talks with the South, then they try to hold talks directly with us, then they get into a snit and do a nuclear test or a rocket launch, then they try to hold talks...
"(We) propose high-level talks between the North Korean and U.S. governments to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula, and establish regional peace and security," a spokesman of the North's powerful National Defense Commission said in an "important statement" carried by Pyongyang's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

The talks' agenda could include the issue of easing military tensions on the peninsula, replacing the armistice that ended the 1950-53 Korean War with a permanent peace treaty, and the U.S. vision for a world free of nuclear weapons, among other issues of mutual interest, the spokesman said.

The overture comes five days after South and North Korea canceled their high-level talks that were planned for Wednesday and Thursday, citing differences over the rank of chief delegates to represent each side. Had they been held, the talks would have been the first high-level talks between the Koreas in six years. The dispute was seen as underlining the big gulf that divides the two Koreas, which remain in a state of conflict after failing to sign a peace treaty at the end of the Korean War.

"If (the U.S.) is truly interested in easing tensions on the Korean Peninsula, and securing peace and security in the region, including the U.S. mainland, it should not speak about holding talks or making contact on the basis of pre-conditions," the spokesman said, according to the KCNA report, monitored in Seoul.

Washington has repeatedly stressed that it is not interested in holding talks for the sake of talks, urging Pyongyang to first demonstrate through action that it is serious about dismantling its nuclear weapons programs. The communist nation claims its nuclear programs are aimed at defending itself from what it calls hostile U.S. intentions.

"We make clear once again that the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is an unchanging will and determination of our armed forces and people," the spokesman said. "Our denuclearization is the denuclearization of the entire Korean Peninsula, including South Korea, and the most thorough denuclearization aimed at completely ending the United States' nuclear threats against us."

The spokesman noted that denuclearization does not simply refer to the dismantlement of the North's nuclear weapons programs, apparently referring to Pyongyang's long-held stance that the U.S. should also give up its nuclear weapons.

"The U.S. can decide on the meeting's venue and time at its own convenience," the spokesman said. "All developments depend on the responsible choice of the United States, which has worsened the situation on the Korean Peninsula until now."

Washington did not immediately respond to the North's offer.

"(We) will let you know when we have something," White House National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said in a brief email.

In Seoul, government sources suggested the North may be reverting to its old practice of bypassing the South to hold direct talks with the U.S.

"As expected, when the South-North talks, which were meant to be a stepping stone, broke down, the North turned to trying to hold direct talks with the U.S.," said one government source.
Posted by: Steve White || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [326 views] Top|| File under:

#1  What? No more screaming "Kill the Infidels"?

If this is their idea of "Friendly" i'm not buying it.

They want something we won't deliver.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 06/17/2013 8:37 Comments || Top||

#2  send Ambassador Rodman
Posted by: Frank G || 06/17/2013 10:21 Comments || Top||

#3  How much will you pay? Seriously, we can't afford to keep doing the Lucy-football thing with you mooks. From now on, you pay up front for all face-time."
Posted by: Muggsey Mussolini || 06/17/2013 10:58 Comments || Top||

#4  I think the NORK term is 'Sea of Fire' Redneck - 'Infidels' is more Islamic.

They want something (food again) or are just placating their Chinese masters. We've seen this dance step far to many times.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 06/17/2013 11:27 Comments || Top||


The Grand Turk
Union Workers, Riot Police Face Off In Turkish Capital
[Jpost] Riot police backed by water cannon warned around 1,000 trade union workers to stop blocking a major avenue in the center of the capital Ankara on Monday or face intervention, a witness said.

The workers were trying to march towards the central Kizilay district, waving flags and chanting slogans, as part of a national strike called by several labor groups in support of anti-government protests.

"Those of you on the streets must stop blocking the streets. Do not be provoked. The police will use force," coppers shouted through megaphones as several water cannon were positioned a few hundred meters away.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/17/2013 07:21 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [320 views] Top|| File under:


Government
NSA: analysts can listen to domestic phone calls, e-mail and text messages
[NEWS.CNET] National Security Agency discloses in secret Capitol Hill briefing that thousands of analysts can listen to domestic phone calls. That authorization appears to extend to e-mail and text messages too.
But any search and/or seizure is reasonable, so it's okay.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  We've come so far. Every line is now a "party line".

Do we still have that old 'Ma Bell' switchboard graphic ?
Posted by: Besoeker || 06/17/2013 3:47 Comments || Top||

#2  People of the government, by the government, for the government.

Took a 150 years to get here.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 06/17/2013 6:05 Comments || Top||

#3  Someone was always listening in.

Back in 1990 or so, Mr. Wife went off to Germany for meetings of some sort. This was in the days before cell phones, so when I wanted to talk to him about something desperately urgent, as I occasionally did, I would leave a message at his hotel for him to call me. Only for some reason I couldn't find the name and phone number of his hotel; my best effort got me connected to some poor man in Eastern Germany who, as might be expected in the middle of the night, was annoyed at me in German, a language I did not at the time speak with anything approaching fluency. "Oh help," I muttered to myself, as I tried to remember the words that would ask the gentleman what I had done wrong...

Suddenly a crisp American voice broke into the conversation. "Are you ok?" she asked. "Should I send an ambulance or call the police?"

"What? No, no! I'm just trying to find my husband's hotel," I replied.

"Never, ever say 'Help' like that when you are on the telephone!" the international operator scolded, for such, indeed, she was. "We always keep an ear out, in case it's an emergency." Then she proceeded to discuss my very partial information with a German telephone operator while I listened, and in a few minutes they found the small hotel in the small village outside Frankfurt where he was staying -- a very impressive bit of work.

I've never doubted that mine was the story told during the telephone operators' lunch break that day, yet another addition to the professional lore. Nor that the more interesting of our verbal intimacies had amused those sophisticates, who literally heard it all, whenever they wanted, and only told tales to the police and ambulance drivers, when warranted (sorry, but it's the only word that fits).
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/17/2013 6:38 Comments || Top||

#4  Yes, but that was a 'time' when people still had a degree, though ever lessening, of propriety. Those who listened in to conversations and shared details where label and ostracized as the 'town gossip'. Today they get paid and rewarded by the government and entertainment media. Those who reveal the collection and use of such communications are the ones who are ostracized.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 06/17/2013 8:46 Comments || Top||

#5  Sure listen in on the conversation, sometimes they can be fun.

Posted by: Boss Omeper1495 || 06/17/2013 11:30 Comments || Top||

#6  ...and your gaming, and your online shopping, and your skype. Getting really excited about the new TVs with camera's in them? The new xbox with mics which do not shut off and must be online to play?

"In Soviet America, TV watches you."
Posted by: swksvolFF || 06/17/2013 18:51 Comments || Top||

#7  I've got your picture, I've got your picture
I'd like a million of you all round my cell
I want a doctor to take your picture
So I can look at you from inside as well
You've got me turning up and turning down
And turning in and turning 'round

I'm turning NSA I think I'm turning NSA I really think so
Posted by: swksvolFF || 06/17/2013 19:29 Comments || Top||


Home Front: WoT
US lawyer to be Guantanamo Bay closure envoy
A Washington lawyer is set to become the diplomatic envoy charged with overseeing the closure of the US military-run prison at Guantanamo Bay.

Clifford Sloan will reopen the Office of Guantanamo Closure, which was shut in January when his predecessor was reassigned by the Obama administration.

Mr Sloan is a close confidant of the Secretary of State, John Kerry.

President Barack Obama vowed last month to renew efforts to shut the prison, amid a hunger strike by detainees.

He said it was "contrary to who we are" and harmful to US interests.

After taking office in 2009, Mr Obama promised to close the prison within a year, but his plans to transfer detainees to maximum security prisons in the US and to try some detainees in the civilian justice system met fierce resistance from both parties in Congress.
'Conviction'

A formal announcement of Mr Sloan's appointment was expected on Monday, state department officials said.

However, in a statement released on Sunday, Mr Kerry said: "I appreciate his willingness to take on this challenge."
Posted by: tipper || 06/17/2013 02:59 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [448 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Lets see, he's only 4-1/2 years off Obullshit's orders, and it'll take about 3 years to do it, sooo should be done the day's Oblahblah's out of office.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 06/17/2013 10:15 Comments || Top||

#2  No one seriously wants Gitmo closed justas no one seriously wants anti-Radicalist/MilTerr Baby Assad to leave power in Syria.

IMO this so-called Office of Gitmo Closure is just an example of the "fraud,waste, + abuse", pro-Big[ger] Govt. cronyism that goes on in Washington.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/17/2013 22:36 Comments || Top||


NSA targeted Medvedev at London G20 summit
Of course we did. The Russian intel services targeted Champ. So what?
American spies based in the UK intercepted the top-secret communications of the then Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev, during his visit to Britain for the G20 summit in London, leaked documents reveal.

The details of the intercept were set out in a briefing prepared by the National Security Agency (NSA), America's biggest surveillance and eavesdropping organisation, and shared with high-ranking officials from Britain, Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

The document, leaked by the NSA whistleblower and traitor Edward Snowden and seen by the Guardian, shows the agency believed it might have discovered "a change in the way Russian leadership signals have been normally transmitted".

The disclosure underlines the importance of the US spy hub at RAF Menwith Hill in Harrogate, North Yorkshire, where hundreds of NSA analysts are based, working alongside liaison officers from GCHQ.

The document was drafted in August 2009, four months after the visit by Medvedev, who joined other world leaders in London, including the US president, Barack Obama, for the event hosted by the British prime minister, Gordon Brown.

Medvedev arrived in London on Wednesday 1 April and the NSA intercepted communications from his delegation the same day, according to the NSA paper, entitled: "Russian Leadership Communications in support of President Dmitry Medvedev at the G20 summit in London – Intercept at Menwith Hill station."

The document starts with two pictures of Medvedev smiling for the world's media alongside Brown and Obama in bilateral discussions before the main summit. The report says: "This is an analysis of signal activity in support of President Dmitry Medvedev's visit to London. The report details a change in the way Russian leadership signals have been normally transmitted. The signal activity was found to be emanating from the Russian embassy in London and the communications are believed to be in support of the Russian president."

The NSA interception of the Russian leadership at G20 came hours after Obama and Medvedev had met for the first time. Relations between the two leaders had been smoothed in the runup to the summit with a series of phone calls and letters, with both men wanting to establish a trusting relationship to discuss the ongoing banking crisis and nuclear disarmament.

In the aftermath of their discussions on 1 April, the two men issued a joint communique saying they intended to "move further along the path of reducing and limiting strategic offensive arms in accordance with the treaty on the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons".

A White House official who briefed journalists described the meeting as "a very successful first meeting focused on real issues". The official said it had been important for the men to be open about the issues on which they agreed and disagreed. Obama had stressed the need to be candid, the official noted.

While it has been widely known the two countries spy on each other, it is rare for either to be caught in the act;
...because each side has relatively few traitors...
the latest disclosures will also be deeply embarrassing for the White House as Obama prepares to meet Vladimir Putin, who succeeded Medvedev as president, in the margins of the G8 summit this week.

The two countries have long complained about the extent of each other's espionage activities, and tit-for-tat expulsions of diplomats are common. A year after Obama met Medvedev, the US claimed it had broken a highly sophisticated spy ring that carried out "deep cover" assignments in the US.

Ten alleged Russian spies living in America were arrested.

Putin was withering of the FBI-led operation: "I see that your police have let themselves go and put some people in jail, but I guess that is their job. I hope the positive trend that we have seen develop in our bilateral relations recently will not be harmed by these events." Last month, the Russians arrested an American in Moscow who they alleged was a CIA agent.

The new revelations underline the significance of RAF Menwith Hill and raise questions about its relationship to the British intelligence agencies, and who is responsible for overseeing it. The 560-acre site was leased to the Americans in 1954 and the NSA has had a large presence there since 1966.

It has often been described as the biggest surveillance and interception facility in the world, and has 33 distinct white "radomes" that house satellite dishes. A US base in all but name, it has British intelligence analysts seconded to work alongside NSA colleagues, though it is unclear how the two agencies obtain and share intelligence – and under whose legal authority they are working under.
Posted by: Steve White || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [341 views] Top|| File under:

#1  ... deeply embarrassing for the White House as Obama prepares to meet Vladimir Putin, who succeeded Medvedev as president, in the margins of the G8 summit this week.

Mr. President - would this be a bad week for you to ask Mr. Putin for my Super Bowl ring back?
Posted by: Robert Kraft || 06/17/2013 1:11 Comments || Top||

#2  All the NSA hoopla brought to mind the mysterious death of a UK analyst trained in Utah and Maryland. Bizarre but they may be looking in the wrong direction if they are still looking. Several intriguing articles in the UK Telegraph, 2011-2012 I believe. Excerpts:

Mr Hague subsequently signed a public interest immunity certificate authorising the withholding of details from the inquest about Mr Williams’s secret work and joint operations with the Americans.
it is understood that as a result NSA and FBI officers who would have been called as witnesses at the inquest will no longer be asked to attend.
Mr Williams had been working at NSA shortly before his death, where he was helping to develop a joint GCHQ-NSA defence against cyber attack’s on the west’s computer infrastructure, particularly in the banking and transport sector.
At one stage during his work at NSA, shortly before he returned to London, Mr Williams was given security clearance to visit its facility in the Utah desert, which the agency classifies as “above top secret”.
Mr Williams also spent several months at Menwith Hill, the secret listening station in Yorkshire used by the United States to intercept coded messages, and Fort Meade in Maryland, the home of the NSA...
In her oral evidence she added: “I think he was a country boy and the city life did not quite suit him. Also I think the job was not quite what he had expected. There was a lot more red tape than he was comfortable with"
Mrs Subbe, her voice breaking with emotion, also told Westminster Coroner’s Court that her brother had a wide range of hobbies including fell running, cycling, art and fashion.
But she said he had not been aware that he had completed two six-week fashion courses at St Martin’s College in London.
The Coroner, Dr Fiona Wilcox asked her if she was surprised to discover that Mr Williams had more than £20,000 worth of female clothing in his Pimlico flat when he was found.
She said: “I am not surprised he was very generous with gifts.”
Mrs Subbe also suggested that he may have simply been collecting the clothing due to his interest in fashion and his desire to buy high quality items.
She told the hearing Mr Williams had been very cautious and risk averse and would never have let anyone inside his flat who had not previously been security vetted.
He also thought “better safe than sorry”, she said.
The hearing was told that the last time Mrs Subbe had spoken to her brother was on August 13.
She said during that conversation he mentioned he was planning to visit a comedy club with a friend where a transvestite performer was appearing.
On August 23, Mr Williams’ family contacted the police because they had not heard from him for more than a week.
Police arrived at his flat in Pimlico, less than a mile from MI6’s headquarters and gained entry using a key.
His naked and decomposing remains were discovered in a holdall which had been locked from the outside and placed in the bath at his Pimlico flat.
Posted by: Anging Hatfield6648 || 06/17/2013 11:07 Comments || Top||

#3  With his comments about spying on Medvedev and hacking China, he is committing treason.
Posted by: dk70 the scantily clad || 06/17/2013 14:55 Comments || Top||

#4  The NSA SHOULD have been spying on the greatest threat to US security: Barak Hussein Obama.
Posted by: Frozen Al || 06/17/2013 14:57 Comments || Top||

#5  Another document summarises a sustained campaign to penetrate South African computers, recording that they gained access to the network of their foreign ministry, "investigated phone lines used by High Commission in London" and "retrieved documents including briefings for South African delegates to G20 and G8 meetings". (South Africa is a member of the G20 group and has observer status at G8 meetings.)

Apparently they successfully identified a sanction buster: MTN. United Against Nuclear Iran, an organisation founded by the late United States ambassador Richard Holbrooke, claimed this month that MTN, which has a 49% stake in Iran's second-biggest cellphone network, has provided the regime with the means to suppress and track dissenters, some of whom are later tortured.

A lawsuit filed in the US by Turkcell, MTN's rival, echoes these claims and alleges further that the company has supported Iran's illegal nuclear programme.
Posted by: Anging Hatfield6648 || 06/17/2013 16:52 Comments || Top||

#6  The above info was from an article Sept. 2012.
Posted by: Anging Hatfield6648 || 06/17/2013 16:54 Comments || Top||


Snowden: Classified US data shows Hong Kong hacking targets
Classified US government data shown to the South China Morning Post by whistle-blower Edward Snowden has provided a rare insight into the effectiveness of Washington's top-secret global cyberspying programme.
That Snowden is a traitor there is no doubt. The question is, is he a catspaw? I can't imagine he obtained all this information on his own. Who aided and abetted him? Why is Glen Greenwald still free?
New details about the data can be revealed by the Post after further analysis of information Snowden divulged during an exclusive interview on Wednesday in which the former CIA computer analyst exposed extensive hacking by the US in Hong Kong and the mainland.

The FBI said yesterday it had launched a criminal investigation and was taking "all necessary steps" to prosecute Snowden for exposing secret US surveillance programmes.

FBI Director Robert Mueller told the House Judiciary Committee: "These disclosures have caused significant harm to our nation and to our safety. We are taking all necessary steps to hold the person responsible for these disclosures," he said.
We've got top. people. working on this...
Snowden, the man behind explosive leaks of information on the US government's Prism programme that collected phone and web data from its citizens, has pledged to stay in Hong Kong to fight any attempts by his government to have him extradited.

The detailed records - which cannot be independently verified - show specific dates and the IP addresses of computers in Hong Kong and on the mainland hacked by the National Security Agency over a four-year period. They also include information indicating whether an attack on a computer was ongoing or had been completed, along with an amount of additional operational information.

The small sample data suggests secret and illegal NSA attacks on Hong Kong computers had a success rate of more than 75 per cent, according to the documents. The information only pertains to attacks on civilian computers with no reference to Chinese military operations, Snowden said.
Of course they were secret and illegal. That's why we had the NSA do it. That's the job of the NSA, to go after intel ABROAD...
"I don't know what specific information they were looking for on these machines, only that using technical exploits to gain unauthorised access to civilian machines is a violation of law. It's ethically dubious," Snowden said in the interview on Wednesday.

Snowden, who came to Hong Kong on May 20 and has been in hiding since, said the data points to the frequency and nature of how NSA operatives were able to successfully hack into servers and computers, with specific reference to machines in Hong Kong and on the mainland.

According to a New York Times report yesterday, US government lawyers, working with their counterparts in Hong Kong, are understood to have identified several dozen criminal offences with which Snowden could be charged under both Hong Kong and American laws. One of the targets Snowden revealed was Chinese University, home to the Hong Kong Internet Exchange which is a central hub of servers through which all web traffic in the city passes.
Which is why the NSA went after it...
A university spokeswoman said yesterday that staff had not detected any attacks to its "backbone network".
Which means, the NSA is really good at what it does...
Yesterday's revelation that the US was secretly hacking computers in Hong Kong and on the mainland sent shockwaves around the world and came just days after Snowden first exposed the Prism programme to The Guardian newspaper in Britain.
I'm comfortably certain it wasn't shocking to anyone in the intel business. This is what the NSA does. And MI6. And Israeli intelligence, and the French, the Chinese, the Russians, and so on...
"The primary issue of public importance to Hong Kong and mainland China should be that the NSA is illegally seizing the communications of tens of millions of individuals without any individualised suspicion of wrongdoing," Snowden said. "They simply steal everything so they can search for any topics of interest."
Which is what we hired them to do, when they do it abroad in our security interests...
Snowden's most recent job was as an NSA contractor with Booz Allen Hamilton but he was fired shortly after he identified himself on Sunday as the source of one of the most significant leaks in US history.
He didn't have the access to do everything he did. Who helped?
Formal charges are the first necessary step that would prompt an extradition request to the Hong Kong government.

Snowden could find himself at the centre of a diplomatic storm between Washington and Beijing as he has explicitly chosen to seek refuge in Hong Kong, a move that will test the Sino-US relationship. He said he had chosen Hong Kong because he believed the city's semi-autonomous status and rule of law would protect him from attempts to extradite him to the US.

It is understood that Snowden arrived in Hong Kong after leaving his home in Hawaii, telling his girlfriend that he would be away for a few weeks. He stayed at the Mira Hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui before checking out on Monday and has been in hiding since.

Snowden said he has not spoken to his family since the revelations were made and lives in constant fear for his own safety.
Posted by: Steve White || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [467 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Why is Glen Greenweld still free?

He's family, and we don't arrest family.

SALON: Glenn Greenwald (email: GGreenwald@salon.com) is a former Constitutional and civil rights litigator and is the author of three New York Times Bestselling books: two on the Bush administration's executive power and foreign policy abuses, and his latest book, With Liberty and Justice for Some, an indictment of America's two-tiered system of justice. Greenwald was named by The Atlantic as one of the 25 most influential political commentators in the nation. He is the recipient of the first annual I.F. Stone Award for Independent Journalism, and is the winner of the 2010 Online Journalism Association Award for his investigative work on the arrest and oppressive detention of Bradley Manning.
Posted by: Besoeker || 06/17/2013 3:03 Comments || Top||

#2  Looks to me like they're using him for their laundry-wish-list: drive a wedge between the west and the western-oriented parts of China (like Hong Kong).... check! Get the west fighting amongst themselves.... check!
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 06/17/2013 9:28 Comments || Top||

#3  Clearly we in the US must do what Senator John Mccain demanded, and attack-n-invade Hong Kong for harboring the Amer traitor Eric Snowden.

This milaction in turn will give the USDOD + Japan a PCorrect-Deniable excuse to formally relocate the US 7th Fleet from Japan to the Hong Kong autonomous region instead of Shanghai = Canton.

Yuuupp.

WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG!

lol.

Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/17/2013 22:49 Comments || Top||

#4  ION WAFF > US NSA LEAKER-MODEL ERIC SNOWDEN LEAKED TO PRC MEDIA: US SENT AGENT TO INFILTRATE CAC [Chendu Aircraft Company = Stealth techs] TO SPY ON G20 | [Telegraph.UK] CHINA STATE MEDIAS [Global Times + CCTV] SAY EXTRADITING ERIC SNOWDEN [to US] WILL BE UNWISE.

Looks like Andrea from Fox's "The Five" is correct in arguing that Beijing will want to get all the info they can get from Snowden before even considering to allow him to return to the US, or even a neutral Country???
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/17/2013 22:56 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Centre offers to handle security in Balochistan
[Pak Daily Times] Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Sunday said the federal government would extend full collaboration to the 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...
government to secure peace in province.

Chaudhry Nisar said a hidden war was continuing in Balochistan and all stakeholders would have to play a joint role for curbing militancy and restoring peace in the province. The interior minister and Federal Minister for Information Pervaiz Rasheed on Sunday visited the Quaid-e-Azam Residency in Ziarat and vowed to re-build it within three to four months. Talking to media on the occasion, Chaudhry Nisar said that the Residency is a national asset and announced that a plan would be chalked out to provide maximum security to historical places in the future.

Later, chairing a meeting in Quetta over the law and order situation in Balochistan, Chaudhry Nisar said that crucial decisions were taken by the government to cope with the terrorist acts and they would be announced later after the approval from Prime Minister 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...
. "Negotiations would be held with those who are prepared to talk and those who are persistent on terrorist activities would be dealt with through other means," said the interior minister. He also announced to award Tamgha-e-Jurat to the late Quetta Deputy Commissioner Mansoor Kakar, FC personnel, coppers, doctors and nurses, saying that they had rendered sacrifices for the country. Nisar noted that women and kiddies were never attacked in Baloch and Pashtun societies even during the biggest of conflicts, and wondered what kind of men carried out Saturday's attacks.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [321 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan


Female suicide bomber responsible for Quetta attack
[Dawn] Intelligence officials revealed today that a female jacket wallah carried out the first attack on a bus carrying students of Sardar Bahadur Khan Women's University earlier on Saturday.

At least 25 people, including the deputy commissioner of Quetta, 14 students of a women's university and four nurses were killed on Saturday when a bomb tore through a bus, followed by a suicide kaboom and a gun-battle in the Bolan Medical College hospital, where the injured students were taken for treatment.

Banned outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi
... a 'more violent' offshoot of Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistain. LeJ's purpose in life is to murder anyone who's not of utmost religious purity, starting with Shiites but including Brelvis, Ahmadis, Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Rosicrucians, and just about anyone else you can think of. They are currently a wholly-owned subsidiary of al-Qaeda ...
grabbed credit for the kabooms.

An intelligence official, who requested not to be named, told Dawn.com that a female suicide bomber managed to sneak into the university bus. "When all the students gathered inside the bus, she blew herself up", he said.

Officials said they had no information about the identity of the female suicide bomber.

Moreover, intelligence officials said after the female bomber blew up herself in the bus, a second male bomber followed suit and struck inside the crowded Bolan Medical Complex Hospital to wreak maximum damage.

According to the intelligence personnel, the male suicide bomber was waiting inside BMC Hospital ward for the arrival of high level officials, including the Chief Secretary, and blew up himself when they reached.

Quetta Police Chief Mir Zubair Mehmood also told Dawn.com that the Deputy Commissioner of Quetta Abdul Mansoor Kakar was killed as result of firing outside the hospital.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [321 views] Top|| File under: Lashkar e-Jhangvi


Israel-Palestine-Jordan
Hamas Deploys 600-Strong Force To Prevent Rocket Fire At Israel
[IsraelTimes] Prodded by Egypt, Gazoo's Islamist rulers task gunnies with thwarting cross-border attacks; Cairo clamps down on weapons smuggling

Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, has deployed a 600-man military force in the Gazoo Strip that operates 24 hours a day in order to prevent rocket fire at Israel, a senior Arab source told The Times of Israel on Monday.

Since Egypt -- with the election a year ago of President Mohammed Morsi -- stepped up its involvement in Gazoo and began to pressure Hamas to not allow rocket fire, the Islamic organization has diligently worked to keep the peace in Gazoo, even when that came at the price of confrontations with smaller Islamic groups such as the bully boy Salafists
...Salafists are ostentatiously devout Moslems who figure the ostentation of their piety gives them the right to tell others how to do it and to kill those who don't listen to them...
, the source said.

Thus, Hamas has established a special force to "safeguard public order" that numbers around 600 gunnies and operates mostly along the Gazoo-Israeli border.

The past few months have seen a dramatic decline in the number of rockets fired at Israel as compared to a year ago, a trend that has been confirmed by Israeli security sources. According to Israeli figures, since the end of Operation Pillar of Defense in November, some 20 rockets or mortar shells have been fired into Israel, compared to about 150 over the same period last year.

At the same time, there has also been a drop in the number of weapons smuggled into the Gazoo Strip, due to Egypt's efforts in the Sinai Peninsula and the prevention of smuggling from Libya.

The Egyptians have fielded a relatively large force to fight terror cells operating in the Sinai and to prevent the smuggling of "game-changing" long-range missiles. Still, Israel claims that the Egyptian activity is insufficient to dismantle terrorist infrastructure in the peninsula, despite kbeing a significant improvement over the days of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak
...The former President-for-Life of Egypt, dumped by popular demand in early 2011...
, who during his rule did not conduct major operations against hard boyz in the Sinai.

Over the last few days, a delegation of senior Hamas officials has been holding consultations in Cairo, sponsored by the Egyptian government. According to Arab media reports, Morsi gave special permission to three Hamas men wanted by Egyptian security to join the proceedings.

Egyptian security forces, including 24 senior officers, have been deployed around the Intercontinental Hotel in Cairo where the Hamas delegation is staying, fearing demonstrations by secular activists who oppose Hamas due to reports that the Islamic group has attempted to intervene in Egyptian politics and has been involved in attacks on Egyptian soil, the Paleostinian Ma'an news agency reported.

Meanwhile,
...back at the comedy club, Boogie ducked another tomato...
Cairo has apparently deployed a considerable military force in the Sinai Peninsula, especially around Rafah, el-Arish and Sheikh Zuweid, in anticipation of potential demonstrations and riots on June 30, the date chosen by the "National Salvation Front," the umbrella opposition group, to stage massive nationwide protests.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/17/2013 07:21 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [452 views] Top|| File under: Hamas

#1  Hey, maybe they really will become the voice of sweet reason.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 06/17/2013 9:26 Comments || Top||

#2  Yeah, sure, but how does this fit into their long-range plan for the destruction of the Juice?
Posted by: Bobby || 06/17/2013 10:03 Comments || Top||

#3  Finally figured it out, did they, you shoot at the Joos, you die.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 06/17/2013 10:21 Comments || Top||

#4  Given the order, the same "600-Strong Force" could just as easily coordinate fires.
Posted by: Besoeker || 06/17/2013 10:45 Comments || Top||

#5  600 to "prevent", 10,000 to carry out.
Posted by: Rob Crawford || 06/17/2013 13:26 Comments || Top||

#6  They are saving up the missiles in case a larger regional war erupts and they see an advantage.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 06/17/2013 15:10 Comments || Top||

#7  Lefty HAMAS is also demanding that Rightist Hezbollah withdraw its fighters from Syria.

Hamas = ME Arab-Muslim = Paleo equivalent of US Democrats or DemoLefties, so Hezbollah = GOP Right???

Looks like the Clinton-n-911-era, OWG-NWO "Unitarian"? marriage between the two agz the US-West is in serious need of marital counseling more than evar.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/17/2013 19:46 Comments || Top||


Southeast Asia
MILF 'frustrated, angry' over stalled peace talks
wink, wink
Posted by: ryuge || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [324 views] Top|| File under: Moro Islamic Liberation Front


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
IDF Not Commenting On Report Israel Attacked Syrian Airport
[Jpost] The IDF was not commenting on a report on a Syrian TV station associated with the rebel forces that Israel attacked on Sunday night the military airbase Al-Miza, West of Damascus, Israel Radio reported. The report noted that a rebel organization had taken responsibility for the attack after the kaboom to took place on Sunday night.

The TV station reported that Israel bombed advanced weapons and radar systems that were recently brought to the airport, according to Israel Radio.

Eye witnesses said that the kabooms were large and that neither the Assad regime nor the rebels had the capability to create kabooms of such a magnitude.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/17/2013 07:21 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [473 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Trying to deploy the S-300?
Posted by: Shipman || 06/17/2013 23:56 Comments || Top||


Report: Hizbullah, Revolutionary Guards Training Syrian Soldiers
[An Nahar] Hizbullah fighters and members of Iran's Revolutionary Guards are training Syrian troops to spearhead an offensive against rebel-held areas in Aleppo in Syria's north, UK's Sunday Times reported.

UK's The Independent also said Sunday that Iran has decided to send a first contingent of 4,000 Revolutionary Guards to Syria to support Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Lord of the Baath...
's forces against the rebels.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [469 views] Top|| File under: Hezbollah

#1  A little late to be training Syrian troops, right?
Posted by: Raj || 06/17/2013 1:02 Comments || Top||

#2  What kinds of things would Hizb'allah fighters be training army troops to do?
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/17/2013 6:45 Comments || Top||

#3  "No, no, NO! Crap in your OTHER hand!"
Posted by: Muggsey Mussolini || 06/17/2013 10:57 Comments || Top||

#4  Getting the Hezzies + Quds Force, etal. to come is easy - its getting them to leave that will be the prob for Baby Assad.

Moreso iff the Bammer decides to go all Reagan-esque IRAN-CONTRA vee the Syrian Rebels.

US = ANTI-US RUSSIA = NO ONE WANTS IRAN + AL-QAEDA, ETC. FOREIGN MILTERR GROUPS TO BE IN SYRIA, LET ALONE DOMINATE THE ASSAD ORPOST-ASSAD GOVT. AS PER HEZBOLLAH + LEBANON.

* IIRC FREEREPUBLIC > ARMING THE SYRIAN REBELS IS ARMING AL-QAIDA.

* IIRC SAME > SEVEN OUT OF NINE SYRIAN REBEL GROUPS ARE ISLAMIST.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/17/2013 23:05 Comments || Top||


Syria Seeks to Bolster Iran Ties after Rowhani Win
[An Nahar] Syria will seek to expand its relations with close ally Iran after moderate holy man Hassan Rowhani's presidential election victory, Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi said on Sunday.

"Syria wishes to further expand its relations with the new Iranian leadership," Halqi said as he received a high-level Iranian economic delegation in Damascus, state news agency SANA said.

Halqi praised "the strength of strategic and stable relations between Syria and Iran on different levels," as he met a delegation headed by Hassan Kazemi Qomi, an economic adviser at Iran's foreign ministry.

"We congratulate Iran's people and leadership for the great success of the Iranian presidential elections," he added, calling the vote "a sincere expression of real democracy" that "showed the unity of the Iranian people with their political and spiritual leaders".
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [314 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria


Iran to send 4,000 troops to aid President Assad forces in Syria
[INDEPENDENT.CO.UK] America's alliance now includes the wealthiest states of the Arab Gulf, the vast Sunni territories between Egypt and Morocco, as well as Turkey and the fragile British-created monarchy in Jordan. King Abdullah of Jordan -- flooded, like so many neighbouring nations, by hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees -- may also now find himself at the fulcrum of the Syrian battle. Up to 3,000 American 'advisers' are now believed to be in Jordan, and the creation of a southern Syria 'no-fly zone' -- opposed by Syrian-controlled anti-aircraft batteries -- will turn a crisis into a 'hot' war. So much for America's 'friends'.

Its enemies include the Lebanese Hizballah, the Alawite Shiite regime in Damascus and, of course, Iran. And Iraq, a largely Shiite nation which America 'liberated' from Saddam Hussein's Sunni minority in the hope of balancing the Shiite power of Iran, has -- against all US predictions -- itself now largely fallen under Tehran's influence and power. Iraqi Shiites as well as Hizballah members, have both fought alongside Assad's forces.

Washington's excuse for its new Middle East adventure -- that it must arm Assad's enemies because the Damascus regime has used sarin gas against them -- convinces no-one in the Middle East.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [441 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

#1  The US troops in Jordan are mostly there participating in a military exercise 'Eager Lion' through the 3rd week of June 2013.
Posted by: lord garth || 06/17/2013 7:28 Comments || Top||

#2  In years to come, historians will ask how America – after its defeat in Iraq and its humiliating withdrawal from Afghanistan scheduled for 2014 – could have so blithely aligned itself with one side in a titanic Islamic struggle stretching back to the seventh century death of the Prophet Mohamed

"Years to come"? Many are asking that right now.
Posted by: Besoeker || 06/17/2013 7:32 Comments || Top||

#3  IMHO, a student of history who does not have an opinion on how this will turn out is merely a story teller.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 06/17/2013 11:00 Comments || Top||

#4  swkswolFF, turn out for whom?

For the world, this will turn out to be just another Muzzie ME Sh*t sandwhich. Other than that you have to be more specific.
Posted by: AlanC || 06/17/2013 19:57 Comments || Top||


Fatfat: Berri is Hizbullah Tool in Constitutional Council Crisis
[An Nahar] Al-Mustaqbal
... the Future Movement, political party led by Saad Hariri...
bloc MP Ahmed Fatfat has accused Speaker Nabih Knobby Berri
Speaker of the Lebanese parliament, a member of AMAL, a not very subtle Hizbullah sock puppet...
of being a Hizbullah tool after two Shiite judges boycotted the meetings of the Constitutional Council.

In an interview with An Nahar daily published Sunday, Fatfat said: "What happened at the Constitutional Council showed that Nabih Berri is an execution tool to what Hizbullah says."

Three judges, two Shiites and a Druze, boycotted earlier this week the meetings that were aimed at discussing a report drafted by the council's president, Judge Issam Suleiman, on the petitions filed by President Michel Suleiman
...before assuming office as President, he held the position of commander of the Leb Armed Forces. That was after the previous commander, the loathesome Emile Lahoud, took office as president in November of 1998. Likely the next president of Leb will be whoever's commander of the armed forces, too...
and the Change and Reform bloc to challenge the 17-month extension of parliament's term.

Fatfat said that both Berri, a Shiite, and Druze leader Walid Wally Jumblat
... Druze politician, head of the Progressive Socialist Party, who's been on every side in Leb at least four times. He'll sell you his friends for a dollar, but family comes higher because of shipping and handling...
are capable of influencing the judges.

The politician denied that al-Mustaqbal had been playing any role in the paralysis of the council's work.

"Those paralyzing the Constitutional Council are those who are not attending the meetings," Fatfat said. "It's obvious that this absence is the result of a political decision."

The council has set another meeting for next Tuesday but it is not likely to convene over lack of quorum.

The approval or the rejection of the challenges requires the go-ahead of seven out of the council's half-Christian half-Musselmen members and a quorum of eight members is needed to vote on challenges.

The lack of quorum would make the 17-month extension law valid after the end of parliament's mandate on June 20.

Asked what measures al-Mustaqbal would take if the council remained crippled, Fatfat said: "We are heading towards a political confrontation that could reach civil disobedience."

"We will ask the people not to pay their bills and taxes and to confront the state because everything is crippled in it under the force of arms," he told An Nahar.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [330 views] Top|| File under: Hezbollah


Nasrallah Congratulates Rowhani for 'Earning People's Trust'
[An Nahar] Hizbullah secretary-general His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah
The satrap of the Medes and the Persians in Leb...
cabled Hassan Rowhani on Sunday congratulating him on his victory in Iran's presidential election.

"Hizbullah along with all the mujahideen in this country of resistance congratulate you ... for aptly earning the big trust of the great people," Nasrallah said in the cable.

He told Rowhani that his victory met the "expectations of the Iranian people," and "renewed the trust of the vulnerable friends and brethren in the Arab and Islamic world."

Rowhani, a moderate holy man, was declared Iran's new president on Saturday, ending eight years of Mahmoud Short Round Ahmadinejad's conservative grip on the top job.

Rowhani, a former top nuclear negotiator who has championed more constructive engagement with world powers, was declared outright winner with 50.68 percent of votes cast in the election.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [318 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran


Putin Meets Cameron, Warns against Arming Syria Rebels
[An Nahar] Russian President Vladimir Putin
...Second and fourth President of the Russian Federation and the first to remain sober. Putin is credited with bringing political stability and re-establishing something like the rule of law, which occasionally results in somebody dropping dead from polonium poisoning. Under Putin, a new group of business magnates controlling significant swathes of Russia's economy has emerged, all of whom have close personal ties to Putin. The old bunch, without close personal ties to Putin, are in jail or in exile or dead...
on Sunday insisted that Moscow had abided by "rules and norms" when providing weapons to Syria and demanded other G8 countries which are contemplating arming rebels do likewise.

Putin was speaking in London after holding talks with British Prime Minister David Cameron
... has stated that he is certainly a big Thatcher fan, but I don't know whether that makes me a Thatcherite, which means he's not. Since he is not deeply ideological he lacks core principles and is easily led. He has been described as certainly not a Pitt, Elder or Younger, but he does wear a nice suit so maybe he's Beau Brummel ...
which could set the tone for the G8 summit, with the West at odds with Moscow over the conflict.

Cameron is seeking to forge an international consensus on handling the unrest as he hosts the leaders of the world's top industrialized nations in Lough Erne, Northern Ireland, from Monday.

Putin, who has provided military support to Syrian Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Despoiler of Deraa...
despite pleas from the West, has been dismissive of U.S. claims that the regime has used chemical weapons and insisted Russia had acted appropriately.

"We are not breaching any rules and norms and we call on all our partners to act in the same fashion," he said.

Washington has vowed to send military aid to rebel forces battling to topple Assad after saying it had proof that his regime had crossed a "red line".

Putin warned that countries supplying arms to forces fighting against Assad's regime risked tarnishing their reputation after footage emerged last month of one rebel apparently eating the heart of a dead soldier.
Posted by: Fred || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [309 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

#1  I saw Putin's transport plane come into land at Stansted today.
Let's just say it's engines are not clean burners!
Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 06/17/2013 18:14 Comments || Top||


DOD brass long urged caution on Syria
The White House’s plan to step up American involvement in Syria might be the very thing its top military commanders has been warning against for months — a foray into a long, messy war.

In hearings, speeches and interviews, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey have been deeply skeptical every time they’ve been asked about potential U.S. involvement in Syria. What kind of weapons would the United States provide to the rebels and what happens if they fall into the wrong hands? Will the U.S. and its allies establish a no-fly zone and if so, how robust would it be? Would U.S. intervention just create a proxy war in the region?

Since the White House announced Thursday that the United States would begin providing lethal aid to the rebels but did not specify any details for military operations, military leaders remain in planning mode. Defense officials told POLITICO on Friday that they have a wide range of options for military action in Syria, and President Barack Obama has not asked the Pentagon for any specific plan yet.

The bottom line, Micah Zenko, a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, said is that although military commanders will always execute their orders, there’s a reason the top brass — from the O-6 colonels and captains to their generals and admirals — has been so reluctant to get involved.

“I’ve never spoken to any at the O-5 level or above who thinks intervening in Syria is a good idea,” Zenko said. “But, yes, they’ll develop options forever until the president authorizes them to execute one of them, and then they will, faithfully.”

The administration may be listening: The no-fly zone is one option the White House seems to be willing to discard — officials downplayed it both in briefings on Thursday and Friday.

“People need to understand that a no-fly zone is not some type of silver bullet,” Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes told reporters at a briefing. “We haven’t ruled out options, but I think people need to understand … they don’t solve the problem necessarily.”

Separately U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice, set to become Obama’s national security adviser, also downplayed a no-fly zone to reporters at the United Nations.

Gen. Dempsey also has said that the Syrian rebels already have plenty of weapons from their other sponsors, raising a question about how much a difference American assistance might make. In April, Rhode Island Sen. Jack Reed asked Dempsey specifically whether the rebels’ access to weapons had been a “decisive issue” in the civil war.

“No, not in my military judgment,” Dempsey answered. “There is no shortage of arms in Syria.” And don’t expect the Syrians to take an intervention lying down, Dempsey warned.

“I have to assume, as the military member with responsibility for these kind of activities, that the potential adversary isn’t just going to sit back and allow us to impose our will on them, that they could in fact take exception … and act outside of their borders with long-range rockets and missiles and artillery and even asymmetrical threats,” he said.

In other words, Syria could lash out and escalate the war whether the U.S. was prepared or not.
Posted by: Pappy || 06/17/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [354 views] Top|| File under:

#1  So-called NO FLY ZONE aircraft must have an defensive capability. Permitting one's aircraft to be fired upon [either from the air or ground] with impunity is very dangerous. During Operations North and Southern Watch in Iraq, then MG Kieth Alexander [yes, same guy] was the Central Command J2 at Prince Sultan Air Base, SA. Alexander had much to do with the identification and neutralization of Iraqi anti-aircraft sites and radars which were targeted and destroyed. His actions and those of the USAF No-Fly Zone pilots paid big dividends for the second Gulf War.

Of course our friends and staunch allies the Turks insisted planes fired upon return fire immediately vs a Northern Watch follow-on planned attack from Insirlik. Southern Watch flyers simply poured on the gas and returned to Prince Sultan Air Base [PSAB], where a post mission follow-on strike would be planned and executed. SA had no such qualms about strike missions out of PSAB.

It got so bad for the Iraqi anti-aircraft batteries, that gunners would let the Allied aircraft pass by... fire a few obligatory rounds for their officers, then beat feet away from their Russian made radars vans and guns as quickly as possible.

I can remember one very tense Video Tele-Conference [VTC] where Alexander dressed down a senior USAF officer quite severely for failing to execute a counterstrike to Alexander's liking. Not a pleasant morning for that officer I assure you.

The conduct of No Fly Zones can be hazardous. April 14th, 1994 was one very sad day. Also, a very tense time for UN inspection teams in Iraq, I assure you.
Posted by: Besoeker || 06/17/2013 3:40 Comments || Top||

#2  I knew you weren't a Chaplain.
:)
Posted by: Shipman || 06/17/2013 4:02 Comments || Top||

#3  No Ship, certainly not. But I am praying we don't get involved in another senseless, middle eastern cock-up.
Posted by: Besoeker || 06/17/2013 4:11 Comments || Top||

#4  I really don't see a down-side to letting them slaughter each other. Sorry.
Posted by: Muggsey Mussolini || 06/17/2013 11:00 Comments || Top||

#5  The Zero rushes in, where heroes fear to tread.
Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 06/17/2013 18:04 Comments || Top||

#6  Maybe there is some sort of coordination here. Russia will back Syria and we will back the Rebels - but neither side will back their side enough to actually win - only prolong the fighting allow them to pile up the carnage and lance the boil.

Nah! Biden would have blabbed it all over the networks by now to show how 'involved' he is....
Posted by: CrazyFool || 06/17/2013 18:13 Comments || Top||


Terror Networks
Al-Qaida Group Confirms Death Of Abou Zeid
[Jpost] Al-Qaeda's North African wing (AQIM) on Sunday confirmed the death of two of its senior commanders in Mali earlier this year, veteran jihadist Abdelhamid Abou Zeid and brigade commander Abdallah Al Chinguetti, Mauritania's ANI news agency said.

The death of Abou Zeid, who made millions of dollars kidnapping Western hostages over the past decade, had already been announced "with certainty" by La Belle France in March after festivities with its troops in northern Mali.

AQIM, however, had not until now officially confirmed the death of Abou Zeid, the leader of one of its southern brigades and a trusted lieutenant to the group's elusive leader, Abdelmalik Droukdel
... aka Abdel Wadoud, was a regional leader of the GSPC for several years before becoming the group's supremo in 2004 following the death of then-leader Nabil Sahraoui. Under Abdel Wadoud's leadership the GSPC has sought to develop itself from a largely domestic entity into a larger player on the international terror stage. In September 2006 it was announced that the GSPC had joined forces with al-Qaeda and in January 2007 the group officially changed its name to the Al-Qaeda Organization in the Islamic Maghreb....
.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/17/2013 07:21 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [319 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in North Africa



Who's in the News
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3Arab Spring
3Hezbollah
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2al-Nusra
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2Govt of Iran
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1Moro Islamic Liberation Front
1Thai Insurgency
1al-Qaeda in Iraq

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Two weeks of WOT
Mon 2013-06-17
  LeJ claims twin attacks
Sun 2013-06-16
  Double blasts kill 25 in Pakistan
Sat 2013-06-15
  Mali's Tuareg rebels ready to sign peace deal
Fri 2013-06-14
  Mortars Fired at Damascus Airport, Delay 3 Flights
Thu 2013-06-13
  60 Boko Haram members killed in Maiduguri
Wed 2013-06-12
  Thousands Throng Istanbul Protest Square
Tue 2013-06-11
  Bombs and battles hit northern Iraq, more than 70 dead
Mon 2013-06-10
  Syria Islamists Execute Youth in Front of Family
Sun 2013-06-09
  Pak police recovers 15,000 kilos of explosive material
Sat 2013-06-08
  Tunisia Turns Away 8 Gulf Muslim Preachers
Fri 2013-06-07
  Seven killed in suspected U.S. drone strike in Pakistan
Thu 2013-06-06
  Nawaz Sharif elected as Pakistan PM
Wed 2013-06-05
  Locks Cut To Boston Water Supply Aqueduct
Tue 2013-06-04
  Missile Kills 26, including 8 Youths, in Syria Village
Mon 2013-06-03
  Damascus car bombing kills 9 security forces members

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