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Leb officials apologize to US ambassador after judge issued order banning her from speaking to media
Today's Headlines
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Page 4: Opinion
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Page 6: Politix
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UN Reports 38% Decrease in Opium Production in Afghanistan
...due to a significant price drop resulting from previous oversupply.
[ToloNews] The World Drug Report released by the United Nations
...where theory meets practice and practice loses...
Drugs and Crime Office’s (UNODC) on Thursday shows a decrease in opium cultivation in the country in 2019 in which Afghan farmers planted opium poppy on 163,000 hectares of land.

This, according to the report, is 38 percent less than in 2018 when 263,000 hectares was planted.

The UNODC report says that all the main opium poppy-growing provinces saw significant decreases in the amount of land growing poppy in 2019.

In Nangarhar
The unfortunate Afghan province located adjacent to Mohmand, Kurram, and Khyber Agencies. The capital is Jalalabad. The province was the fief of Younus Khalis after the Soviets departed and one of his sons is the current provincial Taliban commander. Nangarhar is Haqqani country..
, the report says, this decreased by 82 percent, Nimroz by 78 percent, Kandahar by 40 percent, Uruzgan by 38 percent, Farah by 35 percent and Helmand
...an Afghan province populated mostly by Pashtuns, adjacent to Injun country in Pak Balochistan...
by 34 percent.

On average, this reduction of 38 percent can be attributed mainly to developments in the opium market, UNODC found.

Following two years of very high levels of production, the average farm-gate price (price at point of cultivation without added transportation or other costs) per kilogram of fresh opium fell to $52 in 2019 from $76 USD in 2018, the report says.

UNODC estimated the 2019 total farm-gate value as $404 million, a decrease of 33 percent from its 2018 value, according to an analysis by the Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN).

In 2019, the area under cultivation was the lowest recorded since 2013, AAN says in its analysis on the UN report.

In previous years, farmers, especially in the all-important south-western region, typically reported disease as the main reason for low to moderate yields. This region, also known as Greater Kandahar, includes Helmand province which, were it a separate country, would be the largest opium producer worldwide, according to AAN analysis.

In 2019, Greater Kandahar produced 4,920 metric tons of opium, representing more than two-thirds of this year’s total opium production nationwide. In the southern region (Loya Paktia and Ghazni), the harvest doubled compared to 2018, ANN says in its analysis citing UN report.

AAN says that for the first time since 1994, the UNODC did not release its findings in an annual opium survey and has said the government is suspected of having blocked publication.

The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy estimates released in February 2020 show similar results, according to AAN. The White House report says opium poppy was planted on 160,000 hectares, a decrease of 28 percent from 221,000 in 2018.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/28/2020 00:53 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6498 views] Top|| File under: Narcos

#1  Competition from Chinese fentanyl?
Posted by: Abu Uluque || 06/28/2020 16:04 Comments || Top||

US Finalizing Plan to Pull 4,000 Troops from Afghanistan: CNN
[ToloNews] CNN on Saturday reported that the Trump administration is close to finalizing a decision to withdraw more than 4,000 troops from Afghanistan by the fall, citing two Trump administration officials.
It’s CNN, so the probability is at least 50% that they got it right.
Almost a week ago, Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, head of the US Central Command, said the United States has reduced its troop level to 8,600 in Afghanistan, fulfilling the first phase of the planned withdrawal specified in the US-Taliban
...Arabic for students...
deal signed in Doha in February.

The CNN report says that the new move would reduce the number of troops from 8,600 to 4,500 and would be the lowest number since the very earliest days of the war in Afghanistan, which began in 2001.

This comes a day after a meeting between US Defense Secretary Mark Esper and NATO
...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. A collection of multinational and multilingual and multicultural armed forces, all of differing capabilities, working toward a common goal by pulling in different directions...
Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in Brussels.

"We will also follow up on our discussion on Afghanistan. NATO will continue to adjust our presence in support of the grinding of the peace processor," Stoltenberg said on Friday. "This will be done in close coordination with Allies and partners."

The US has committed to withdrawing all of its forces from Afghanistan by next April under the agreement it signed with the Taliban.

It is unclear when the withdrawal of the 4,000 additional US troops would take place, CNN reports.

"US force levels in Afghanistan remain in the mid-8,000s. Additional drawdowns beyond this number remain conditions-based according to the US Government’s assessment of the overall security environment and Taliban compliance with the US-Taliban agreement," Pentagon front man Major Rob Lodewick, said as quoted by CNN.

According to CNN, the US State Department and US National Security Council did not reply to requests for comment.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6486 views] Top|| File under:

Africa North
Muslim Brotherhood propaganda defeat, as US District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly dismissed finally all claims against Dr Aref Ali Nayed
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6473 views] Top|| File under: Muslim Brotherhood

Journalist's phone hacked by new ‘invisible' technique: All he had to do was visit one website. Any website.
[The Star Canada] The white iPhone with chipped paint that Moroccan journalist Omar Radi used to stay in contact with his sources also allowed his government to spy on him.

They could read every email, text and website visited; listen to every phone call and watch every video conference; download calendar entries, monitor GPS coordinates, and even turn on the camera and microphone to see and hear where the phone was at any moment.

Yet Radi was trained in encryption and cyber security. He hadn’t clicked on any suspicious links and didn’t have any missed calls on WhatsApp — both well-documented ways a cell phone can be hacked.

Instead, a report published Monday by Amnesty International shows Radi was targeted by a new and frighteningly stealthy technique. All he had to do was visit one website. Any website.

Forensic evidence gathered by Amnesty International on Radi’s phone shows that it was infected by "network injection," a fully automated method where an attacker intercepts a cellular signal when it makes a request to visit a website. In milliseconds, the web browser is diverted to a malicious site and spyware code is downloaded that allows remote access to everything on the phone. The browser then redirects to the intended website and the user is none the wiser.
As somebody who once designed the early digital cellular data call flows I have the following to say.
#1 This is a brilliant infra-structure side hack!
#2 It would be very hard to defeat
#3 It's a hack at a "glue-point" where different tech are attached together and hence a perfect point to do it.
#4 this is because most modern tech is not a design "unity" rather a "glued" composite.
While Amnesty could not definitively state that the Moroccan authorities were behind the attack, the group was able to use forensic evidence to conclude this was very likely the case.

Forensic evidence gathered by Amnesty International on Radi’s phone shows that it was infected by "network injection," a fully automated method where an attacker intercepts a cellular signal when it makes a request to visit a website.

The episode reveals not that authoritarian governments are actively listening to the calls, monitoring the web traffic and reading the emails of journalists and human rights activists — but that they can do so undetected.

"I kind of suspected (I was hacked)," said Radi on an encrypted video chat from Rabat. "The Moroccan authorities are buying every possible and imaginable surveillance and espionage product. They want to know everything."

Radi is an investigative journalist who co-founded the local news site Le Desk, a partner with the Star in the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. He specializes in the connections between politicians and business people as well as social movements and human rights. In other words, he’s a thorn in the government’s side and a prime target for surveillance, hacking and harassment.

In 2017, he was arrested while reporting on a security crackdown in the Rif region, and again this past December after one of his tweets described a local judge as an "executioner."

"I was prosecuted for contempt of court, but that’s just the official charge. In fact, I was punished for my entire body of work. They pile things up and then they look for a pretext to arrest," he told Forbidden Stories, an investigative journalism group that coordinated this report with the Star and 14 other outlets.

Radi spent a week in pretrial detention, was later convicted to four months and is currently out pending appeal.
Posted by: Frank G || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6497 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The Israelis shared this tech with us some years ago. At a discount too, fantastic chaps. Great front end too. Easy and very 'god like'. Amnesty has been after them for a while, instigated by a Soros funded group called Open Computing. It's very necessary in this world.

An activist journalist deserves zero privacy anyway.
Posted by: Dron66046 || 06/28/2020 7:06 Comments || Top||

#2  Really. And who decides who's an "activist journalist"?
Posted by: European Conservative || 06/28/2020 16:16 Comments || Top||

#3  Vegan/PETA journalists beware!
Posted by: DooDahMan || 06/28/2020 16:21 Comments || Top||

#4  Really. And who decides who's an "activist journalist"?

The State.
Posted by: Varmint the Anonymous8123 || 06/28/2020 19:54 Comments || Top||

#5  who decides who's an "activist journalist"?

Self-announced. Followed by grant applications from George Soros’ Open Society to support his work until he gets a Pulitzer.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/28/2020 23:31 Comments || Top||

Muslim World League Secretary General sez MWL cooperates with Saudi Arabia in efforts to combat extremist ideas, specifically in the Muslim world
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6509 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Saudi Arabia

#1  Good place to start. Most extremist Muslim ideas come from Saudi Arabia, the home of Wahhabism.
Posted by: Daffy Brown6765 || 06/28/2020 15:42 Comments || Top||

#2  Muslim League Secretary Mohammad al-Issa: "When all else fails blame it on the Jinns".
Posted by: jpal || 06/28/2020 20:04 Comments || Top||

UK counter-terrorism police charge Libyan suspect with three counts of murder for knife attack in Reading
A suspect has been charged with three counts of murder over a knife attack in the English town of Reading described by police as a terrorist incident, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said on Saturday.

A man wielding a five-inch knife attacked people out enjoying the sun at Forbury Gardens, a Reading park, on the evening of June 20, killing three people and injuring three others.

"The Crown Prosecution Service has today authorized CounterTerrorism Policing South East to charge Khairi Saadallah,
...arrived in England requesting asylum in 2012 because he liked to smoke and drink, developed schizophrenia and an interest in jihad which briefly attracted the attention of MI5 last year, released from prison just two weeks before succumbing to Sudden Jihad Syndrome but could not be sent back to Libya because the country was deemed too dangerous for him...
25, with three counts of murder and three counts of attempted murder," the CPS said.

Saadallah will appear at Westminster Magistrates Court on Monday.

A security source had previously told Rooters that the suspect, a resident of Reading, was a Libyan national.

Police named the victims as Britons James Furlong, 36, and David Wails, 49, and US national Joseph Ritchie-Bennett, 39.
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6490 views] Top|| File under: Muslim Brotherhood

#1  could not be sent back to Libya because the country was deemed too dangerous for him...

No consideration that he was too dangerous to the country he was in though. This is known as human sacrifice to those outside the virtue signalling crowd who hold power. You are expendable for their virtue.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 06/28/2020 6:17 Comments || Top||

#2  Precisely my thought, Procopius2k.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/28/2020 10:05 Comments || Top||

Six people have been arrested in #France over the theft of an artwork by street artist Banksy
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6470 views] Top|| File under:

Fifth Column
Attorney General Barr forms panel on 'anti-government extremism'
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Attorney General William Barr on Friday ordered the establishment of a task force to counter what he called "anti-government extremists" committing violence as protests against police brutality convulse the United States.

In a memo to law enforcement and prosecutors released by the Department of Justice, Barr said alleged extremists had "engaged in indefensible acts of violence designed to undermine public order," including attacking police officers, damaging property and threatening innocent people.

Protests have spread nationwide over George Floyd’s death in police custody last month and the deaths of other African Americans at the hands of police.

Although largely peaceful, some demonstrators have turned violent, which President Donald Trump and his allies have blamed on left-wing extremists among the protesters.

Barr said the extremists "profess a variety of ideologies."

"Some pretend to profess a message of freedom and progress, but they are in fact forces of anarchy, destruction, and coercion," Barr said.
Posted by: Besoeker || 06/28/2020 09:12 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6474 views] Top|| File under: Antifa/BLM

#1  BLM, Antifa, KKK, right-wing, bible-thumpers, gun nuts - whatever.

Illegal is illegal. Terrorism is terrorism.
Posted by: Bobby || 06/28/2020 10:09 Comments || Top||

#2  So Barr says COVID-19 has delayed progress of Durham's "investigation", but Barr has the time and the desire to form a "panel".

Of course, government is never extreme....
Posted by: Clem || 06/28/2020 10:14 Comments || Top||

#3  Can we talk?
Posted by: KBK || 06/28/2020 19:48 Comments || Top||

Medical staff at a hospital allocated for coronavirus cases in Dhi Qar assaulted
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6478 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iraq

BDS groups plan anti-annexation ‘Day of Rage' across the US
[JPost] - Pro-Palestinian organizations across the US plan to hold demonstrations against Israel on Wednesday, the earliest date that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could bring to a cabinet vote the extension of Israeli sovereignty to parts of the West Bank.

The demonstrations are set to take place in Chicago, San Diego, Brooklyn, Los Angeles and San Francisco, as well as in Toronto, Madrid and Valencia. Among the groups organizing the events are Students for Justice in Palestine, Jewish Voice for Peace, and American Muslims for Palestine.
Don't wear masks - Fauci is a secret Jew!
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 06/28/2020 09:47 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6467 views] Top|| File under: PLO

#1  At this point they have to get in line. BLM (burn, loot, murder), defund the police, commynizm 4evah and statuezmustgo# are all booked ahead of them.
Posted by: M. Murcek || 06/28/2020 10:05 Comments || Top||

#2  "Rage" my house or property, don't forget to bring your own plasma and QuikClot.
Posted by: Besoeker || 06/28/2020 14:22 Comments || Top||

Sri Lanka
IRGC head Esmail Ghaani threatens Israel in message from Syria
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6473 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran

#1  At least six pro-Iranian fighters killed in alleged Israeli airstrike
Strike targeted location where IRGC Quds Force commander visited hours earlier.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 06/28/2020 3:32 Comments || Top||

#2  Only six? But, hey, six less scum bags using precious oxygen.
Posted by: Clem || 06/28/2020 7:18 Comments || Top||

#3  /\ * At least six....
Posted by: Clem || 06/28/2020 7:19 Comments || Top||

Satellite photographs show that an explosion that rattled Iran’s capital came from an area in its eastern mountains
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6503 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran

#1  The gas storage area sits near what analysts describe as Iran’s Khojir missile facility. The explosion appears to have struck a facility for the Shahid Bakeri Industrial Group, which makes solid-propellant rockets, said a researcher in Monterey, California.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies identified Khojir as the “site of numerous tunnels, some suspected of use for arms assembly.” Large industrial buildings at the site visible from satellite photographs also suggest missile assembly being conducted there.

One can only hope.
Posted by: Bobby || 06/28/2020 9:59 Comments || Top||

#2  They obviously do not subscribe to the International Building Code when it comes to the hazardous H classification standards.

They subscribe to the IIC the Insh'Alla Islamist Code.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 06/28/2020 13:27 Comments || Top||

Financial advisor who resigned from his work with Lebanon's government in its talks with the IMF, warns of "mass emigration"
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6473 views] Top|| File under: Hezbollah

#1  The out-migration of Maronite Christians has been been going on for more than a century.
Posted by: b || 06/28/2020 9:40 Comments || Top||

Iran’s Central Bank injects hundreds of millions of dollars to stabilize the currency market
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6489 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran

Lebanese officials apologize to the US ambassador after a judge issued an order banning her from speaking to local media outlets a day after she criticized Hezbollah
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6515 views] Top|| File under: Hezbollah

#1  Better start protecting this Ambassador with extra special care. Muslims will take her out. Prayers for her.
Posted by: Sgt. D.T. || 06/28/2020 16:25 Comments || Top||

Zeinab Soleimani daughter of assassinated Qassem Soleimani married the son of Hezbollah's Hashem Safi Ad-Din
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6480 views] Top|| File under: Hezbollah

#1  No picture of John Kerry’s son as best man holding the ‘blood red’ wedding ring?
Posted by: Airandee || 06/28/2020 6:46 Comments || Top||

#2  Nope. I'm gonna send them an Islamic toaster though.
Posted by: Fred || 06/28/2020 13:12 Comments || Top||

Who's in the News
5Govt of Iran
4Muslim Brotherhood
2Islamic State
2Govt of Saudi Arabia
1Sublime Porte
1Govt of Iraq
1Tin Hat Dictators, Presidents for Life,
1Govt of Iran Proxies
1Moslem Colonists

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Two weeks of WOT
Sun 2020-06-28
  Leb officials apologize to US ambassador after judge issued order banning her from speaking to media
Sat 2020-06-27
  Iranian-backed Hezbollah militias threaten to assassinate Iraq's Prime Minister Kadhimi
Fri 2020-06-26
  Iraqi security forces have raided a HQ of Ketaib Hezbollah
Thu 2020-06-25
  Black Lives Matter Leader: ‘If This Country Doesn't Give Us What We Want, Then We Will Burn Down This System'
Wed 2020-06-24
  Appeals court orders judge to dismiss Flynn charges
Tue 2020-06-23
  Ivory Coast says it has captured jihadist leader behind border attack
Mon 2020-06-22
  Libya's Presidential Council slams Sisi's threats as ''declaration of war''
Sun 2020-06-21
  Sisi threatens direct Egyptian intervention in Libya
Sat 2020-06-20
  UN arms embargo on Iran must remain in place:
France, Germany, Britain
Fri 2020-06-19
  Mufti Al-Ghariani issues fatwa giving the GNA militias right to execute anyone loyal to the LNA
Thu 2020-06-18
  Iran announces its support for Turkey-backed gov't in Libya
Wed 2020-06-17
  Speaker of the Egyptian Parliament: We request to expel the GNA ambassador
Tue 2020-06-16
  Al Qaeda calling their fighters to join the GNA in Libya
Mon 2020-06-15
  Florida city's SWAT team resigns after police chief
kneels with protesters
Sun 2020-06-14
  Coup attempt on the Lebanese government that has failed, Prime Minister Hassan Diab says

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