Hi there, !
Today Sat 12/22/2012 Fri 12/21/2012 Thu 12/20/2012 Wed 12/19/2012 Tue 12/18/2012 Mon 12/17/2012 Sun 12/16/2012 Archives
Rantburg
307723 articles and 1192576 comments are archived on Rantburg.

Today: 60 articles and 158 comments as of 21:58.
Post a news link    Post your own article   
Area: WoT Operations    Non-WoT    Opinion        Politix    Posting Order WoT Research
Three more polio workers shot in Pakistan; eight dead in 48 hours
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 2: WoT Background
11 23:02 USN,Ret. [250] 
0 [226] 
0 [229] 
9 15:13 Frank G [253] 
0 [222] 
1 22:07 Mullah Richard [225] 
0 [220] 
0 [220] 
0 [221] 
0 [215] 
0 [216] 
0 [222] 
0 [215] 
2 14:57 SteveS [244] 
0 [219] 
3 10:36 Besoeker [246] 
0 [230] 
4 10:29 Besoeker [233] 
1 10:22 Pappy [226] 
0 [219] 
0 [229] 
0 [218] 
4 19:57 Barbara [239] 
0 [220] 
0 [220] 
3 21:41 Frank G [252] 
0 [226] 
7 18:28 Barbara [238] 
1 23:06 USN,Ret. [259] 
Page 1: WoT Operations
8 19:50 JosephMendiola [313]
3 12:16 GolfBravoUSMC [306]
14 22:58 Tom Sawyer [288]
3 22:01 Mullah Richard [283]
0 [233]
0 [241]
0 [238]
0 [233]
0 [264]
0 [258]
0 [269]
0 [245]
1 09:00 Ptah [261]
Page 3: Non-WoT
1 16:42 Raider [236]
7 18:34 bigjim-CA [246]
14 23:10 USN,Ret. [242]
2 14:40 Raider [248]
0 [215]
0 [223]
0 [217]
3 10:05 Besoeker [237]
0 [214]
1 21:53 JosephMendiola [272]
2 19:41 SteveS [240]
Page 4: Opinion
4 17:15 JohnQC [243]
9 20:02 JosephMendiola [255]
5 15:06 Bright Pebbles [236]
5 09:49 JohnQC [229]
Page 6: Politix
16 23:12 tipper [242]
9 13:35 Perfesser [232]
5 18:29 Barbara [239]
Africa North
African leaders call for Mali intervention
[Magharebia] The African Union
...a union consisting of 53 African states, most run by dictators of one flavor or another. The only all-African state not in the AU is Morocco. Established in 2002, the AU is the successor to the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), which was even less successful...
(AU) and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) called on Monday (December 17th) for deploying an African force "without delay" to expel armed Islamist groups that control northern Mali.

"We have to focus on the need to send an international force without delay to put an end to the terrorist danger that is threatening peace in our region," Benin president and AU chairperson Thomas Boni Yayi said.

The AU chief made the remarks in Niamey at the opening of the summit of the Conseil de l'Entente (Council of the Accord), a regional co-operation body that includes Benin, Burkina Faso
...The country in west Africa that they put where Upper Volta used to be. Its capital is Oogadooga, or something like that. Its president is currently Blaise Compaoré, who took office in 1987 and may be in the process of being chased out now...
, Ivory Coast, Niger and Togo.

In his turn, Nigerien President Mahamadou Issoufou repeated his request for the UN Security Council to adopt an urgent resolution to be the legitimate umbrella that would enable Africans to combat hard boyz in Mali.

"I reiterate our call to the Security Council to authorise the dispatch of an international force as soon as possible to help liberate northern Mali. Sending this force has even become an urgent thing for everyone," he said.

"Our region is facing unprecedented threats, such as terrorism and organised crime, which work together to create a condition that can explode anytime, in which case none of our countries will be spared," Issoufou said.

Analyst Mohamed Ag Ahmedu said that the African leaders' urgent statements and their desire to wage a quick war came as an implied response to the position of UN Secretary-General the ephemeral Ban Ki-moon
... of whom it can be said to his credit that he is not Kofi Annan...
, who warned in late November of the consequences of any unplanned military intervention in the region.

"This has disturbed the African leaders who felt that these statements are underestimating their months-long efforts and co-ordination," the analyst added.

Malian journalist Moussa Coulibaly said that the African leaders' calls were expected as part of efforts to find a way out of this state of ambiguity, slow action and contradictory statements.

"It's about time the world realised that any minute lost in dates, delays and hesitation will further consolidate the armed terrorist groups' force," he said.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [230 views] Top||


Racism spurs Mali terrorist defections
[Magharebia] Amid mounting defections within al-Qaeda linked terror groups in northern Mali, attention is turning to what some say see as racist practises of jihadist groups in the Sahel.

Racism has been a key factor pushing many young Africans of non-Arab descent to defect and return to their normal lives in their countries of origin. This is taking place at a time when the majority of these young Africans are beginning to realise more than ever that the promises of equality, freedom and dignity of true Islam have not materialised within the jihadist movements.

One of the most prominent jihadists to defect from Sahel terror groups over racism was Hicham Bilal. Bilal was the only black person leading a battalion within the Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO), the group in control of the city of Gao.

He defected at the beginning of November and returned his native Niger. In an interview with AFP in Niamey at the time, he described the racism within the ranks of Malian jihadist groups.

"These lunatics from MUJAO are not children of God, they are narcos. They do everything which goes against Islam and to them, a black man is inferior to an Arab or a white," Bilal said.

"For them, blacks are less valuable than white Arabs. This is what has made hundreds of black Africans recruits defect," the former terror leader said.

Bilal also described how the al-Qaeda-linked jihadists were sending black fighters to the frontline near Mopti in anticipation of a possible international military intervention.

"They say that if there is a war they will put all the black fighters in the front as cannon fodder," he said.

While Nigerian journalist and activist Hassan Ag Midal discounted racism as the cause for recent defections, he said that the conflict "proves in the end the existence of real internal splits, be they racial, tribal or material".

"It is known that the majority of elements of MUJAO, dominant in Gao, are black Africans as group leaders and members of the councils. They assume direct responsibilities but the founders and emirs are white," Timbuktu-based journalist Osman Mohamed Osman told Magharebia.

He explained that the reason behind this was that the majority of the population of Gao is black. "The white population of the city fled, except for the jihadists who are not afraid, though people fear them," he added.

Youth activist Ibrahima Mica, a Songhai resident of Gao, said that Arab and Touareg residents fled because of their rejection of control by "black African jihadists, even in the name of Islam. This contrasts with Timbuktu which is controlled by white-skinned Ansar al-Din and al-Qaeda white Arabs."

"Everybody in northern Mali realises that the Movement for Tawhid and Jihad is the only organization that includes in its ranks black Africans who refuse to be under the control of Algerian or Arabs jihadists, even though they meet within the same jihadi creed," Mica told Magharebia by phone. Security analyst Babou Sek noted that MUJAO itself was a product of internal conflicts within al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).

"The group that founded it wanted it to be a jihadist branch that would include black Africans, as well as some Arabs who were marginalised within al-Qaeda. It is no secret to anyone that this marginalisation is partly racist and partly due to resource sharing," he said.

He added that "al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb tried to avoid a recurrence of such problems by establishing battalions and brigades led by Touareg emirs and Arab Mauritanians who had long suffered from exclusion by the Algerians. Yet the structural problem remained as the exclusion of black jihadists continued, even within MUJAO where blacks are a majority."
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [233 views] Top||

#1  So, Arabs are white now? Anything to fit the narrative.
Posted by: gromky || 12/19/2012 1:07 Comments || Top||

#2  the promises of equality, freedom and dignity of true Islam have not materialised

The irony just drips off the page. Dumb, dumber, dumbest and then some.
Posted by: AlanC || 12/19/2012 8:23 Comments || Top||

#3  "the Movement for Tawhid and Jihad is the only organization that includes in its ranks black Africans who refuse to be under the control of Algerian or Arabs jihadists, even though they meet within the same jihadi creed"

That explains why the White House and the Euros are so reluctant to help the Africans push the jihadis out of Mali.
Posted by: Pappy || 12/19/2012 10:21 Comments || Top||

#4  Exactly! The cultural reality (with deep rooted hatred) that everyone would prefer to ignore.
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/19/2012 10:29 Comments || Top||


Libya launches rebel integration project
[Magharebia] Libya's Warriors Affairs Committee is set to reintegrate former revolutionaries into civilian life, Libya Herald reported on Monday (December 17th). The project will help 5,000 former fighters establish their own SMEs. Each revolutionary will be eligible for a maximum grant of 100,000 dinars.

A larger initiative benefits some 140,000 former rebels. Plans include sending 5,000 fighters to study abroad, setting up vocational training for 10,000 revolutionaries, assisting 20,000 warriors with post-traumatic stress care, and preparing 2,000 revolutionaries for public service positions.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [226 views] Top||

#1  Plans include sending 5,000 fighters to study abroad

Flight school?
Posted by: Pappy || 12/19/2012 10:22 Comments || Top||


Russia May Ease Muslim Brotherhood Ban To Boost Egypt Ties
[Ma'an] Russia may ease restrictions on the Moslem Brüderbund soon to improve relations with Egypt and rebuild influence lost during the Arab Spring revolutions, diplomatic sources say.

The election of President Muhammed Mursi, propelled to power by the Islamist group, offers President Vladimir Putin
...Second President of the Russian Federation and the first to remain sober. Because of constitutionally mandated term limits he is the current Prime Minister of Russia. His sock puppet, Dmitry Medvedev, was installed in the 2008 presidential elections. Putin is credited with bringing political stability and re-establishing something like the rule of law. During his eight years in office Russia's economy bounced back from crisis, seeing GDP increase, poverty decrease and average monthly salaries increase. During his presidency Putin passed into law a series of fundamental reforms, including a flat income tax of 13%, a reduced profits tax, and new land and legal codes. 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...
a chance to improve relations with Cairo that were strained during the long rule of Hosni Mubarak
...The former President-for-Life of Egypt, dumped by popular demand in early 2011...
, who was ousted in 2011.

Russia's Supreme Court banned the Moslem Brüderbund from operating in Russia in 2003, describing it as a terrorist organization.

But Moscow is now trying to beef up ties with Egypt, partly to offset some of the influence it has lost in the Arab world in the past two years, particularly in countries such as Libya and Syria that have been recipients of Russian arms.

Easing restrictions on the Moslem Brüderbund would follow a similar move by the United States, which tweaked its ban on formal contacts with the Islamist group, banned under Mubarak, early in 2012. Mursi is expected to visit Washington in 2013 for the first time since his election in June.

Western diplomatic sources say Mursi also accepted an invitation to visit Russia when Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov visited Egypt during a Middle East tour last month.

"The visit is expected close to the end of the first quarter in 2013. The Brotherhood being on the list remains the problem and Lavrov is said to have given assurances that they will deal with that," one of the sources said.

Russia has in the past accused the Moslem Brüderbund of supporting rebels who want to create an Islamist state in Russia's mainly Moslem North Caucasus.

The Kremlin is still struggling to contain the Islamist insurgency, which Putin has warned could fuel violence in other regions closer to the capital.

But during his trip to Cairo, Lavrov endorsed an initiative by Mursi to resolve the conflict in Syria and political analysts say Moscow appears to be looking for ways to engage more with Egypt, a popular holiday destination for Russians as well as being a regional power.

Better ties?

"As far as I know, Minister Lavrov wants to 'delist' it (the Moslem Brüderbund)," said Alexei Grishin, head of the Religion & Society think tank who used to be a presidential adviser on Islam.

"Any fresh decision by the Supreme Court would be a very lengthy procedure, so maybe what can be done is to restrict the blacklisted Moslem Brüderbund only to the faction that fought in Russia, in the Caucasus, for example," he told Rooters.

Russia's Supreme Court and anti-terrorist committee were not available for comment. The Foreign Ministry declined immediate comment.

The Arab world's biggest nation is engulfed in a prolonged political crisis nearly two years after the fall of Mubarak that pits Mursi's Islamist supporters against liberal, secular and Christian opposition groups.

"Nobody really knows what will come out of this, but Egypt is such an important country that no matter what we think of its new authorities, we need to have a dialogue," said Fyodor Lukyanov, a prominent foreign policy analyst.

"It makes sense for Russia to make a bet on Egypt, or at least seek ties with them very actively. So I think they will soon solve the issue with the Moslem Brüderbund in Russia."

In Egypt, a Moslem Brüderbund front man said the ban on the group in Russia was "a very bad thing" and made clear any real improvement in ties was unlikely before that was settled.

"Our leader (the head of the Brotherhood group) had mentioned that issue to the Russian ambassador in Cairo during a joint meeting where he told the ambassador: 'How come you are asking to have a strong relationship with us while you see as a terrorist group?'," front man Mahmoud Ghozlan said.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [219 views] Top||


Africa Subsaharan
Chad sends troops into Central African Republic to help stop rebel advance
Chadian troops entered the neighbouring Central African Republic (CAR) on Tuesday following an appeal from Bangui's President Francois Bozize after rebels seized a number of key towns, a CAR military official said. Chad sent troops into neighboring Central African Republic on Tuesday to help the government there stop a rapid advance by rebels that risks sparking a new spiral of violence in the mineral-rich nation. The rebels killed 15 government soldiers during the capture on Tuesday of Bria, a diamond mining town about 600 km (360 miles) northeast of the capital Bangui and the sixth town to fall to the insurgents in little over a week.

A coalition of three rebel factions is threatening to overthrow the Bozize government, demanding respect for different peace accords signed between 2007 and 2011. Chadian President Idriss Deby Itno is a close ally of Bozize whom he helped when the high-ranking army officer seized power in 2003.
Posted by: Pappy || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [222 views] Top||


Britain
Home Office could use ┬217,000 of Abu Qatada's assets to help pay cost of keeping him in Britain
Ain't gonna happen. That would be against his "ooman rites" don't ya know?
The Government could use frozen bank accounts and seized assets belonging to hate preacher Abu Qatada worth ┬217,000 to help cover the cost of keeping him in the country.

Home Secretary Theresa May told the Home Affairs Select Committee that officials will look at raiding Qatada's cash and assets to pay for his huge legal bills.

The cost of the terror suspect's legal aid has already reached more than ┬500,000.

Qatada, 52, was recently moved into a ┬450,000 north London home which is being rented out by the British taxpayer for ┬1,400 a month.

The Al-Qaeda fanatic continues to battle deportation to Jordan to face terrorism charges.

The Special Immigration Appeals Commission last month upheld Qatada┬'s latest appeal because of concerns about human rights in the country.

The Government is appealing against the decision but Qatada remains in the UK on bail conditions including a 16-hour curfew, wearing an electronic tag, not using the internet and not contacting certain people.

Committee chairman Keith Vaz said: 'Bank accounts that have been frozen and seized assets are worth ┬217,000.

Posted by: tipper || 12/19/2012 07:52 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [226 views] Top||


Caribbean-Latin America
CBS News: 'Fast and Furious' Gun Found At Site Where Mexican Beauty Queen Killed
A gun found at the scene of a shootout between a Mexican drug cartel and soldiers where a beauty queen died was part of the botched "Fast and Furious" operation, CBS News reports.

Authorities had said that Maria Susana Flores Gamez was likely used as a human shield and that an automatic rifle had been found near her body after the Nov. 23 shootout.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, tells CBS News that the Justice Department did not notify Congress that a Fast and Furious firearm was found at the scene in Sinaloa.
A mere oversight, I'm sure.
CBS News learned the Romanian AK-47-type WASR-10 rifle found near her body was purchased by Uriel Patino at an Arizona gun shop in 2010. Patino is a suspect who allegedly purchased 700 guns while under the ATF's watch.

The "Fast and Furious" operation was launched in 2009 to catch trafficking kingpins, but agents lost track of about 1,400 of the more than 2,000 weapons involved.

Authorities say the ring was believed to have supplied the Sinaloa cartel with guns. Mexico's drug cartels often seek out guns in the U.S. because gun laws in Mexico are more restrictive than in the U.S. Some guns purchased by the ring were later found at crime scenes in Mexico and the United States.

The operation came to light after Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed in December 2010 by marijuana smugglers who used guns from the "Fast and Furious" operation.

Federal authorities who conducted the operations have faced tough criticism for allowing suspected straw gun buyers for a smuggling ring to walk away from gun shops in Arizona with weapons, rather than arrest them and seize the guns.

Several Republicans have called for the resignation of Attorney General Eric Holder due to the botched operation.
Posted by: Beavis || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [238 views] Top||

#1  A war against women, too?
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/19/2012 0:26 Comments || Top||

#2  Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, tells CBS News that the Justice Department did not notify Congress that a Fast and Furious firearm was found at the scene in Sinaloa.

Might explain why DoJ and State have said or appear to have done very little about the former Marine, Jon Hammer's detention in Mexico.

Might also explain the Champ's recent lament about.... "gun control being a complex issue". Now that the Gamez story is out however, he's media full-bore into the "Assault Gun Ban". Typical administration...."best defense is a good offense" strategy. Smooth operator, that Champ.
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/19/2012 0:29 Comments || Top||

#3  I love how CBS spins it - "botched" operation. The operation worked exactly as planned! "Lost track of the weapons" that was the entire point! Nice job, mainstream media. Those evil Republicans, always wanting to prosecute people for innocent mistakes.
Posted by: gromky || 12/19/2012 1:05 Comments || Top||

#4  This whole operation should have been enough to bring down and administration. Just shows how much the MSM, the federal machine, dhimocrats and the lack of Republican backbone have led to a coup d'état of our Republic.

Our founding fathers are rolling in their graves.
Posted by: DarthVader || 12/19/2012 1:26 Comments || Top||

#5  When Holder was declared "In Contempt of Congress" over F&F but was not prosecuted, the jig was up. The Rule of Law was finished. They know it, we know it. It is what it is.
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/19/2012 1:36 Comments || Top||

#6  Govmint illegal gun traffickers have gun control as an agenda? The trafficked guns end up murdering American and Mexican citizens and there is no outrage and fury by citizens and the press? Something's very wrong with this picture.
Posted by: JohnQC || 12/19/2012 16:59 Comments || Top||

#7  "The trafficked guns end up murdering American and Mexican citizens and there is no outrage and fury by citizens and the press?"

I doubt most of the citizens know anything about it, John. And if the ones who vote D do know, it's overshadowed by dreaming up new stuff they can demand from those of us who actually work and pay taxes the gummint.

As for the press, it's not like anyone was killed who they actually know. >:-(
Posted by: Barbara || 12/19/2012 18:28 Comments || Top||


China-Japan-Koreas
N. Korean Satellite May Be Malfunctioning
Independent astronomers say North Korea's newly launched satellite may be malfunctioning, tumbling end over end instead of pointing consistently at the Earth. It also is allegedly failing to emit expected ultra high-frequency radio broadcasts.

Dr. Jonathan McDowell of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics told VOA Monday that optical observers from around the world have been using orbital data to predict the satellite's movements. They also have been measuring its brightness. He said multiple reports, notably one from retired South African astronomer Greg Roberts, indicate the satellite is alternately getting brighter and fainter in 16-second intervals, which suggests to McDowell and other scientists that the satellite is tumbling in orbit.

"The box is tumbling end over end, so when it catches the sunlight it gets brighter, when it's facing the other way it gets fainter, McDowell said. That leads us further to conclude the satellite isn't working right. It's designed so that it should always point toward the Earth so it can use its little webcam to take pictures of the Earth," he said.

McDowell said another troubling sign -- the absence of ultra high-frequency radio broadcasts North Korea said would be emitted from the satellite -- was flagged by Bob Christy with the Kettering Group of amateur satellite observers in the United Kingdom.

"People have been looking for the claimed patriotic songs that the satellite is meant to be broadcasting over radio, and no one has been able to pick those up. So we think that part isn't working either," McDowell said.
Posted by: Steve White || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [244 views] Top||

#1  It is the nature of bricks to tumble in flight, it is not the nature of bricks to broadcast.
Posted by: Shipman || 12/19/2012 5:12 Comments || Top||

#2  so it can use its little webcam to take pictures of the Earth

Hehe. What was the range on USB again?
Come on, guys. Don't be haters. Remember, the amazing thing about a dancing bear is not how well it dances, but that it dances at all.

P.S. I lost a box of donuts when the dang thing didn't blow up on the launch pad.
Posted by: SteveS || 12/19/2012 14:57 Comments || Top||


The Grand Turk
Turkey To Iran: Stop Syrian Violence
[Ynet] Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu urged Iran to "send a clear message" to the regime in Damascus
...The capital of Iran's Syrian satrapy...
to push for an end to the violence.

He said that instead of criticizing, Iran should "stop" the Syrian regime which has continuously oppressed its own people and caused violations by Turkey's border.
When you've purged your army, all that's left is toothless diplomacy.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [220 views] Top||


Home Front: Politix
Report on Benghazi attack to blame diplomatic security
An independent review of the September 11 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi criticizes the State Department's Bureau of Diplomatic Security for its work in Libya before the event in which four Americans were killed, two sources who have read the report told CNN Tuesday.

The senior management in charge of diplomatic security "does not come out well at all," said one of the sources.

Assistant Secretary of State Eric Boswell is head of diplomatic security and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Charlene Lamb oversaw State Department decisions on security at the diplomatic outpost. Lamb testified before Congress about the security precautions; documents show Lamb denied repeated requests for additional security in Libya.

The review has been sent to Capitol Hill, and an unclassified version was expected to be released as well.
Posted by: tipper || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [246 views] Top||

#1  If I remember correctly, the Regional Security Offier (RSO) for Libya told Congress within days of the incident that the problem resided back at State. I believe he said something to the effect that "his superiors in D.C. were his Taliban". The question that remains unanswered is WHY the Diplomatic Security (DS) superiors acted in such a manner.

Posted by: Besoeker || 12/19/2012 0:42 Comments || Top||

#2  The question that remains unanswered is WHY the Diplomatic Security (DS) superiors acted in such a manner.

Red-headed stepchild project?
Posted by: Pappy || 12/19/2012 10:26 Comments || Top||

#3  They are not like us. Many in DS are....icky former military and probably homophobic. They cluster in small groups and keep to themselves in the cafeteria and are often seen selecting meat items. They push us around, carry icky guns, and tell us what to do. We've never liked them anyway.
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/19/2012 10:36 Comments || Top||


Home Front: WoT
Prosecutors: Florida Man Plotted New York Terrorist Attack
[Jpost] A Pak-born man plotted to detonate a bomb in New York City to avenge the deaths of people killed by drone attacks in Afghanistan but failed to raise enough money to carry out the scheme, a federal prosecutor said on Tuesday.

Raees Alam Qazi, 20, was tossed in the clink
... anything you say can and will be used against you, whether you say it or not...
along with his brother, Sheheryar Alam Qazi, 30, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on Nov. 29. The brothers, both naturalized US citizens, are charged with providing support to cut-throats and conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction.

Both have pleaded not guilty
"Wudn't me."
.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [218 views] Top||


US: Two-Thirds Of Top Qaeda Leaders 'Removed' Since 2009
[Ynet] The United States has eliminated more than 20 of al Qaeda's top 30 leaders based in Afghanistan and Pakistain from the battlefield since Barack Obama
We're gonna punish our enemies and we're gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us...
became president, a top US government security official said on Tuesday.

Daniel Benjamin, head of the State Department's counterterrorism bureau, said that when Obama took office in 2009, al Qaeda's central organization, then led by the late Osama bin Laden
... who has won the race to that place where we all eventually end up...
, was a "formidable and dangerous organization."
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [252 views] Top||

#1  Appears Daniel Benjamin is suffering from advanced Susan Rice disease.

Think college football coaching vacancies Ben, then get back to us when you have something intelligent to say.
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/19/2012 0:59 Comments || Top||

#2  I could be wrong but outside of Bin Lasen himself, i thought we had taken out all the top guys by 2009. So the new top guys they are crowing about are technically top guys but realistally they are middle management.
Posted by: Rjschwarz || 12/19/2012 10:07 Comments || Top||

#3  double-tapping Ayman "Stunted Unicorn" Zawahiri would put a dent in the old guard's morale
Posted by: Frank G || 12/19/2012 21:41 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Pentagon to reimburse Pakistan $688 million
WASHINGTON -- The Pentagon quietly notified Congress this month that it would reimburse Pakistan nearly $700 million for the cost of stationing 140,000 troops on the border with Afghanistan.

The United States also provides about $2 billion in annual security assistance, roughly half of which goes to reimburse Pakistan for conducting military operations to fight terrorism.

Until now, many of these reimbursements, called coalition support funds, have been held up, in part because of disputes with Pakistan over the Bin Laden raid, the operations of the C.I.A., and its decision to block supply lines into Afghanistan last year.

The $688 million payment -- the first since this summer, covering food, ammunition and other expenses from June through November 2011 -- has caused barely a ripple of protest since it was sent to Capitol Hill on Dec. 7.
Posted by: Anguper Hupomosing9418 || 12/19/2012 08:28 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [250 views] Top||

#1  Yay! Polio for everyone!
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 12/19/2012 8:46 Comments || Top||

#2  When is Pakistan going to reimburse us?
Posted by: Rambler in Virginia || 12/19/2012 9:47 Comments || Top||

#3  Sandy victims seeking loans and financial assistance take note! Please vote appropriately next time (if there is to be a next time).
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/19/2012 10:18 Comments || Top||

#4  Let me guess - Paki government officials pocket the money, pennies reach the troops in the field actually on the border with Afghanistan.
Posted by: gromky || 12/19/2012 10:28 Comments || Top||

#5  They could've designated $100 mil of that to get Dr. Shakeel Afridi out of jail...
Posted by: Pappy || 12/19/2012 10:29 Comments || Top||

#6  Gromky, of course, is an optimist...
Posted by: Steve White || 12/19/2012 12:11 Comments || Top||

#7  He just left out the part where millions get funneled to the terrorists by sympathetic ISI officers.
Posted by: DarthVader || 12/19/2012 12:22 Comments || Top||

#8  Mark the money, let's see where it ends up.
Posted by: Muggsy Mussolini1226 || 12/19/2012 15:55 Comments || Top||

#9  Mark the money, let's see where it ends up.

Mark it? H*ll, IRRADIATE THE BEJEBUS OUT OF IT!
Posted by: Mullah Richard || 12/19/2012 20:16 Comments || Top||

#10  They could've designated $100 mil of that to get Dr. Shakeel Afridi out of jail...

Yeah, what Pappy said. A shameful bit of business. At the very least, offer the Paks some cash to look the other way while we stage a "jail break". As opposed to us coming to get the doctor ourselves...
Posted by: SteveS || 12/19/2012 20:56 Comments || Top||

#11  Send them GM Stock Certificates.
Posted by: USN,Ret. || 12/19/2012 23:02 Comments || Top||


North Waziristan tribes lose perks for not supporting anti-polio drive
[Dawn] The political administration of North Wazoo Agency has suspended all perks and privilege of Othmanzai Dawar and Wazir tribes for not cooperating with the authorities in the anti-polio
...Poliomyelitis is a disease caused by infection with the poliovirus. Between 1840 and the 1950s, polio was a worldwide epidemic. Since the development of polio vaccines the disease has been largely wiped out in the civilized world. However, since the vaccine is known to make Moslem pee-pees shrink and renders females sterile, bookish, and unsubmissive it is not widely used by the turban and automatic weapons set...
drive in their areas.

Political Agent Siraj Ahmed on Monday issued directives to heads of all government departments including Nadra, passport and tehsildar office to stop issuing passports, national identity cards and domiciles certificates to members of Wazir and Dawar -- two major tribes of North Waziristan.

According to the directives, ban has been imposed on provision of lungi (honorarium given to tribal elders), fresh recruitments of Class IV employees and developmental work till these tribal elders ensure security of teams taking part in the anti-polio campaign.

The decision was taken under collective territorial responsibility clause of Frontier Crimes Regulations.

The political agent told Dawn that the decision was taken after the elders of Wazir and Dawar tribes failed to cooperate with the government in carrying out the anti-polio drive.

He said that thousands of children were at risk in the tribal region owing to a ban, imposed by bad boys, on anti-polio drive. He said that government would not tolerate challenging its writ at any cost.

The political agent said that it was responsibility of tribal people to make security arrangements for the polio teams.

It may be recalled that Shura Mujahideen of North Waziristan (Hafiz Gul Bahadar group of Taliban) had imposed ban on anti-polio campaign in the tribal agency.

A pamphlet distributed on June 15, 2012 by the Shura stated that the ban on polio campaign would be continued till end to US drone attacks.

After one week, the Shura of South Waziristan Taliban (Maulvi Nazir group) also distributed a similar pamphlet, linking anti-polio campaign to drone attacks in the tribal agencies.

However,
if you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning...
tribal people had held America responsible for ban on polio campaign. They said that Dr Shakil, presently languishing in Beautiful Downtown Peshawar
...capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province), administrative and economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. Peshawar is situated near the eastern end of the Khyber Pass, convenient to the Pak-Afghan border. Peshawar has evolved into one of Pakistan's most ethnically and linguistically diverse cities, which means lots of gunfire.
jail, and other 'US agents' had played negative role during anti-polio campaign.

They said that Dr Shakil and his team helped America to trace out whereabouts of Al Qaeda chief the late Osama bin Laden
... who has won the race to that place where we all eventually end up...
by running a fake immunisation drive in Abbottabad
... A pleasant city located only 30 convenient miles from Islamabad. The city is noted for its nice weather and good schools. It is the site of Pakistain's military academy, which was within comfortable walking distance of the residence of the late Osama bin Laden....
A doctor responsible for carrying out polio campaign in tribal areas told Dawn on condition of anonymity that 160,000 children were deprived of vaccine during each campaign.

He said the government had made alternative arrangements to reach maximum children by administering vaccine to children under the age of five years at various points on roads from Bannu to Peshawar.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [220 views] Top||


KP Assembly told: Militants planned to seize key installations
[Dawn] Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
... formerly NWFP, still Terrorism Central...
Minister for Information Mian Iftikhar Hussain has said that the krazed killers, who attacked Bacha Khan International Airport on Saturday night, had planned to take over important security installations and local TV station in the cantonment area.

┬"We have reports that if attackers had entered the airbase then they would have received more backup from their standby associates in the adjacent tribal agency,┬" he said while speaking on a point of order in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly on Monday.

The minister said that 10 faceless myrmidons were killed in the attack on the airport while one was incarcerated
Drop the rod and step away witcher hands up!
in maimed condition.

He said that foreigners of Dagestan
...a formerly inoffensive Caucasus republic currently bedevilled by low-level Islamic insurgency, occasional outbreaks of separatism, ethnic tensions and terrorism, primarily due to its proximity to Chechnya. There are several dozen ethnic groups, most of which speak either Caucasian, Turkic, or Iranian languages. Largest among these ethnic groups are the Avar, Dargin, Kumyk, Lezgin, and Laks. While Russers form less than five percent of the population, Russian remains the primary official language and the lingua franca...
and Uzbek origins were involved in the attack.

He said that all the faceless myrmidons involved in the attack had different tattoos on their bodies.

He said that members of terrorist organizations carved tattoos on their bodies to identify each other.

Mr Hussain did not disclose the name of the maimed terrorist, who is under treatment. However,
Caliphornia hasn't yet slid into the ocean, no matter how hard it's tried...
he said that the injured krazed killer was in stable, pH balanced condition.

┬"They (militants) had planned to seize important military installations, a nearby station of the state-run Pakistain Television, after entering the airbase,┬" he said and added that local people and law enforcement agencies jointly thwarted the nefarious plan of terrorists.

The minister said that Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain front man had also stated that 10 people were sent on the mission with two explosive-laden vehicles, rockets and hand grenades.

Mr Hussain said that one army man, two coppers and six non-combatants were killed while two more police constables suffered injuries in the operation.

He assured the house that government would compensate the local people whose properties were damaged as a result of krazed killers┬' attack.

The minister condemned killing of tribal people in a car kaboom in Jamrud, Khyber Agency on Monday and asked federal government to properly compensate the affected families.

Meanwhile,
...back at the chili cook-off, Chuck reached for the green sauce...
absence of ministers again affected the assembly┬'s business and Speaker Kiramatullah Khan Chagharmatti kept adjournment motions and call attention notices pending.

Taking notice of the absence of ministers, speaker directed information minister to relieve those cabinet members, who did not attend the session. ┬"Why not to relieve habitual absenting ministers,┬" he asked the information minister.

Earlier, during question-answer session member of e Mutahidda Majlis-e-Amal from Lakki Marwat Naseer Mohammad Maidadkhel said that army had turned district headquarters hospital in his area into a base and the building was badly damaged.

He said that security forces had fitted heavy artillery on the hospital┬'s premises and cracks had appeared in the building due to firing. He said that government should evacuate troops from the hospital and provide them suitable place.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [220 views] Top||


Treason petition filed against Rehman Malik in SC
[Dawn] A petition was filed against Federal Interior Minister 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.
┬'s tour of India, alleging illegal use of taxpayers┬' money for the tour and for offering hospitality to the family of Sarabjit Singh at the Bloody Karachi
...formerly the capital of Pakistain, now merely its most important port and financial center. It may be the largest city in the world, with a population of 18 million, most of whom hate each other and many of whom are armed and dangerous...
registry of the Supreme Court on Tuesday, DawnNews reported.

The petitioner has called for the recovery of the expenses incurred on Malik┬'s tour, stating that the funds utilised for the tour were spent from the national treasury and therefore, should be returned by the federal interior minister.

The petition also claimed that Malik caused great embarrassment to the people of Pakistain by announcing that visas would be granted to the family members of the tossed in the clink
Drop the rosco, Muggsy, or you're one with the ages!
Indian spy, Sarabjit Singh, who is allegedly responsible for a large number of Pak deaths.

The petition added that the interior minister vowed to extend hospitality to Singh┬'s family, which was detrimental to national interests.

Moreover, the petition maintained the stance that the initiatives taken in India between the Indian delegation and Rehman Malik were illegal.

The petition requested the Supreme Court to try Rehman Malik for treason under Articles 5 and 6 of the Constitution.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [221 views] Top||


Death toll rises to 21 after Khyber agency attack: officials
[Dawn] The corpse count from a car kaboom on a marketplace in northwestern Pakistain┬'s Khyber Agency has risen to 21, officials said Tuesday.

The bomb went kaboom! on Monday in Jamrud, part of the tribal district of Khyber, close to where passengers were waiting to catch buses across the country.

┬"Four more people died of their wounds at the Hayatabad Medical Complex overnight, raising the corpse count in the attack to 21,┬" Doctor Sohail Ahmad told AFP.

Local administration official Jehangir Azam confirmed the new toll and said 43 people were still being treated for injuries.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [215 views] Top||


Punjab banned outfits in contact with Uzbek militants, NA told
[Dawn] Banned bad boy organizations in Punjab province have contacts with Uzbek forces of Evil who charge $40,000 for carrying out terrorist attacks in Pakistain, a federal minister told the National Assembly on Tuesday.

During Tuesday's session, Federal Minister Sheikh Waqas Akram told the assembly that the Uzbek forces of Evil were in contact with the banned outfits in Punjab, adding that the members of these banned
...the word banned seems to have a different meaning in Pakistain than it does in most other places. Or maybe it simply lacks any meaning at all...
organization
s could be seen wearing shirts of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU).

"These (Uzbek) forces of Evil demand a payment of US$40,000 to perform terrorist attacks on Pak soil," he told the assembly.
"And it's cheap at twice the price."
Akram, who belongs to ruling coalition partner the Pakistain Mohammedan League-Q (PML-Q), said Interior Minister 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.
should stop "spinning tales" and take definitive action against these banned bad boy outfits.

The minister's disclosure comes after a brazen attack on Beautiful Downtown Peshawar
...capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province), administrative and economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. Peshawar is situated near the eastern end of the Khyber Pass, convenient to the Pak-Afghan border. Peshawar has evolved into one of Pakistan's most ethnically and linguistically diverse cities, which means lots of gunfire.
's Bacha Khan Airport and military airbase on Saturday by forces of Evil said to be foreigners of Dagestan
...a formerly inoffensive Caucasus republic currently bedevilled by low-level Islamic insurgency, occasional outbreaks of separatism, ethnic tensions and terrorism, primarily due to its proximity to Chechnya. There are several dozen ethnic groups, most of which speak either Caucasian, Turkic, or Iranian languages. Largest among these ethnic groups are the Avar, Dargin, Kumyk, Lezgin, and Laks. While Russers form less than five percent of the population, Russian remains the primary official language and the lingua franca...
and Uzbek origins.

Uzbek forces of Evil are known to corroborate with the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain (TTP) in battles against the Pak security forces, which include an attack on Bannu jail conducted to release Taliban inmates and the high-profile prisoner Adnan Rashid.

NA Deputy Speaker Faisal Karim Kundi chaired Tuesday's assembly session held here in Islamabad.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [216 views] Top||


Heretics liable to be slain, says note found on militant's body
[Dawn] "My name is Musa'b and I am from Dagestan
...a formerly inoffensive Caucasus republic currently bedevilled by low-level Islamic insurgency, occasional outbreaks of separatism, ethnic tensions and terrorism, primarily due to its proximity to Chechnya. There are several dozen ethnic groups, most of which speak either Caucasian, Turkic, or Iranian languages. Largest among these ethnic groups are the Avar, Dargin, Kumyk, Lezgin, and Laks. While Russers form less than five percent of the population, Russian remains the primary official language and the lingua franca...
(Russia)," so wrote one of the bully boyz who ended up fighting, holed up inside an under-construction house, barely a kilometre away from the scene of Saturday night's brazen attack on the Pakistain Air Force base inside the Bacha Khan International Airport.

The handwritten letter, written in Urdu, was found on Musa'b's body after he was killed in Pawaka village, along with four others, the day after the assault on the airfield. It gives a rare insight into the mindset of bully boyz indoctrinated to fight Pak forces, and also points to the growing role of foreign bully boyz in attacks inside Pakistain.

"I am taking part in these blessed operations because you people do not act upon the divine faith. You people neither act on its teachings nor accept it. Indeed, you follow the laws of the infidels," he writes. "The heretics are liable to be killed till the evil is eliminated. Killing (them) is obligatory," he sermonises in the single-page letter.

The letter does not address the Pak forces directly, but knowing that he and his fellow fighters would soon be taking on the Pak forces in their quest to seize control of the PAF base and the adjoining international airport, it was clear who it was meant for.

The level of motivation and marksmanship of Musa'b and his fellow fighters, two of whom blew themselves up, while three others died fighting police surprised even the most hardened and experienced coppers.

"I could never forget the way Musa'b charged at us, firing and running straight into us," a police brass hat recalled.

"He still had ammunition left with him and he could have fought on for several hours. And had one of our men not spotted him charging towards us and shot him there and then, he would have killed many of us. Today people would have been observing our Qul," the officer said.

But more than their motivation and level of preparedness, the element that surprised law enforcement and security officials was the number of foreign bully boyz in the two groups that tried to take control of the PAF base.

Out of the nine bodies, five, they say, have distinctive central Asian and Caucasian features. Musa'b and one of the other bully boyz killed have Caucasian features and some security officials believe they could be brothers.

UZBEK CONNECTION: Law enforcers have long had experience of coming across Uzbeks in course of various encounters and operations, but this is the first time, they say, they have come across so many of them in Beautiful Downtown Peshawar
...capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province), administrative and economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. Peshawar is situated near the eastern end of the Khyber Pass, convenient to the Pak-Afghan border. Peshawar has evolved into one of Pakistan's most ethnically and linguistically diverse cities, which means lots of gunfire.
That the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan have long been collaborating and conducting joint operations inside Pakistain's tribal areas is no secret. What, however, has come as a surprise is a pronounced and extremely visible role of the IMU in action in the settled districts of Pakistain.
Foreigners make fabulous cannon fodder, and they have fewer objections to harming the locals than those related to the locals, however distantly.
Reams of video footage is available to corroborate the TTP-IMU long association with each other in battles against the Pak forces inside the tribal areas, mainly in North and South Wazoo, including recently released visuals of them undertaking joint fire-raids against army posts in the Mahsud heartland.

But the midnight attack on Bannu jail, a joint TTP-IMU operation, was the first such public demonstration of their collaboration in a settled district of Pakistain. The TTP released a video showing scenes of pre- and post-attack on the prison, ostensibly conducted to release the former PAF technician, Adnan Rashid.

The video was the first acknowledgement of the presence of IMU fighters in any attack conducted outside the confines of the tribal region. The IMU followed suit, releasing a version of its own, dubbed in German and Uzbek language.

Why is the TTP relying more now on the IMU for support is not clear, but law enforcement officers who have had the experience of fighting them acknowledge Uzbek fighters for their ferocity, alacrity and training.

For the law enforcement agencies, the increasing and growing role of imported muscle in audacious and high-profile attacks could well change the dimension of the whole war game in Pakistain.

TATTOO: Already, law enforcers and security officials are trying to make a case for the fight against bully boyz by pointing to tattoos on four of the bodies in their custody.

Two very large tattoos engraved on the back of two imported muscle have caught their immediate attention. There is an almost a scramble to search to find the meanings behind what they perceive and claimed to be engraved tattoos of the "angel of death" and "Satan".

Some within the law enforcement officers believe the bully boyz belonged to some particular cult in the Russian Federation before taking up the cause of the "Holy Jihad" to fight the "infidels" "in the land of Jihad".

Others believe the bully boyz were part of some international network, though tattooing is a common practice in Russia, including Chechnya and Daghistan, and central Asian republics of Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan.

One of the killed foreign bully boyz had a small star-like tattoo on his shoulder and leg, while one had his name "Yusuf" engraved on his arm in Russian alphabet.

The tattoos remain an enigma for Sherlocks, who are working hard to find religious explanation and the symbolism behind the "evil face" and the long-nailed fingers. This may turn into something big and it may also end up in a total fiasco. But what is now known is that the law enforcement agencies are increasingly facing more daring and brazen attacks inside urban populated centres, not just from Pak bully boyz under the TTP umbrella but also a horde of foreign bully boyz based in the tribal region.
Sow the wind, reap the whirlwind, as it is said. Our compliments to the ISI.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [222 views] Top||


International-UN-NGOs
UN Watch: Human Rights Watch Expels Falk From UN C'tee
[Jpost] Human Rights Watch
... dedicated to bitching about human rights violations around the world...
on Tuesday expelled UN investigator Richard Falk from one of its committees, UN Watch reported.

UN Watch had called for Human Rights Watch to dismiss Falk, citing condemnation against him for spreading anti-Semitism and 9/11 conspiracies by UN Secretary-General the ephemeral Ban Ki-moon
... of whom it can be said to his credit that he is not Kofi Annan...
and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay.

"We commend Human Rights Watch and its director Kenneth Roth for doing the right thing, and finally removing this enemy of human rights
When they're defined by the state or an NGO they don't mean much...
from their important organization," said Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch.

"A man who supports the Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, terrorist organization, and who was just condemned by the British Foreign Office for his cover endorsement of a virulently antisemitic book, has no place in an organization dedicated to human rights," said Neuer.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [229 views] Top||


Iraq
Kudish troops fire on Iraqi Helo
Troops from Iraq's autonomous Kurdistan opened fire on an Iraqi army helicopter on Tuesday, officials said. Kurdistan Peshmerga officials said on Tuesday they fired on an Iraqi military helicopter near Sikanyan town just north of the ethnically mixed city of Kirkuk, to keep the aircraft from taking surveillance pictures of their military positions. A local mayor in the area confirmed the incident. But there was no immediate response from the Iraqi central government.

News of the clash came just hours after authorities announced Iraq's President Jalal Talabani, a Kurd, had been hospitalized following a stroke that had left him in critical but stable condition. A veteran Kurdish politician, Talabani has been a key mediator between Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's central government and the Kurdistan Regional Government who are growing further apart over how to control oil wealth and the disputed territories between their two regions.

Iraq's government and self-ruled Kurdistan last month both sent troops from their respective armies to reinforce positions around towns in disputed areas where they both claim control as part of a broader feud over oil and territory.The growing rift between Baghdad and Kurdistan is the most challenging test to Iraq's federal unity since the last American troops left a year ago, removing a buffer of U.S. military presence from an area long seen as a flashpoint for conflict. Iraqi armed forces and Kurdish Peshmerga have faced off before only to back off before any major confrontation and U.S. officials have been in talks with both regions to try to ease tensions between them.
Posted by: Pappy || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [225 views] Top||

#1  My mind g back to a map Ralph Peters put together a few years ago.
Posted by: Mullah Richard || 12/19/2012 22:07 Comments || Top||


Iraqi President Hospitalized After Suffering Stroke
[Ynet] Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, a Kurd who has mediated among Shi'ite, Sunni and Kurdish parties, was hospitalized on Tuesday after suffering a stroke that left him in "critical but stable condition", government officials and politicians said.

Without Talabani, Iraq would lose an influential peace-maker who often eased tensions in the fragile power-sharing government and negotiated in the growing rift over oil between Storied Baghdad
...located along the Tigris River, founded in the 8th century, home of the Abbasid Caliphate...
and the OPEC member country's autonomous Kurdistan region.
May he heal well and quickly.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [220 views] Top||


Israel-Palestine-Jordan
Abbas Urges UN to Help Palestinian Refugees in Syria
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas wants Palestinian refugees living in Syria and affected by the fighting there to be able to enter the West Bank or Gaza Strip.

The official WAFA news agency said Mr. Abbas on Wednesday urged United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to help the refugees get to Palestinian territories.

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency says more than 486,000 Palestinian refugees were living in nine official and three unofficial camps in Syria.

The Yarmouk camp in the Syrian capital, Damascus, has been the site of heavy fighting this week, including a deadly airstrike by a Syrian warplane.

The camp was established in 1957 and is home to the largest Palestinian refugee community in Syria.
Posted by: tipper || 12/19/2012 07:17 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [229 views] Top||


US, UK Attack 'Provocative' Jerusalem Construction Plans
Naturally.
[Jpost] State Department's Nuland says US "deeply disappointed" with Israeli plan to construct thousands of apartments in east Jerusalem; UK's Hague calls move an "obstacle to peace, two-state solution."

US and EU officials were in "close contact" regarding how to best and most effectively react to Israeli plans for thousands of new Jewish apartments in east Jerusalem, European diplomatic officials said on Tuesday.

The comments came amid reports that the four EU countries on the UN Security Council -- La Belle France, Britannia, Portugal and Germany -- were preparing a statement in the council condemning the settlement construction. The coordination with the US stems from a desire to avoid an American veto of any Security Council resolution on the matter.

In February 2011, the US vetoed a Security Council resolution that would have condemned all settlements, as well as construction in east Jerusalem, as illegal. The US said that while it believed the settlements were illegitimate, the resolution would have hindered chances to resume peace talks.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [239 views] Top||

#1  US "deeply disappointed" with Israeli plan to construct thousands of apartments in east Jerusalem

Disappointment is part of growing up.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/19/2012 0:25 Comments || Top||

#2  "obstacle to peace, two-state solution."

As the European imposed Middle East States are collapsing as we speak. Consider this part of the bigger picture. Just without the corpses.
Posted by: phil_b || 12/19/2012 4:21 Comments || Top||

#3  The provocative plans involve clearing a mountain that is currently completely barren of life - and has been that way since Israel was created. It's only a few miles from current housing in Jerusalem proper. And Israel has always claimed this land as its own. It's worth looking at both sides of this story.
Posted by: Raider || 12/19/2012 19:53 Comments || Top||

#4  "It's worth looking at both sides of this story."

Silly Raider - they'd never do that.

Their heads would explode.
Posted by: Barbara || 12/19/2012 19:57 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
(Iran) Israeli death squads involved in Sandy Hook bloodbath: Intelligence analyst
Posted by: tipper || 12/19/2012 05:44 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [253 views] Top||

#1  This is from The Onion, right?
Posted by: Rambler in Virginia || 12/19/2012 9:03 Comments || Top||

#2  I would give this theory no credence, but all theories and elements therein, should be examined objectively and cataloged appropriately.
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/19/2012 9:16 Comments || Top||

#3  Iran PressTV - all the credibility of The Onion, with only unintended humor
Posted by: Frank G || 12/19/2012 9:45 Comments || Top||

#4  PressTV has found some willing lackeys in the US to put forward these things. I wonder what PressTV pays its stringers.
Posted by: lord garth || 12/19/2012 10:44 Comments || Top||

#5  Hey Garth - I'm not a Khomeinist lackey... Am I?
Posted by: Cheager Angoluque6848 || 12/19/2012 11:40 Comments || Top||

#6  I blame renegade ex-Navy hunter/killer dolphins. Oh, wait...that was Hurricane Sandy.
But seriously, folks. These loons should be beaten with bats...
Posted by: tu3031 || 12/19/2012 12:07 Comments || Top||

#7  "This is from The Onion, right?"

Of course not, Rambler.

The stuff in The Onion is at least half-way plausible.
Posted by: Barbara || 12/19/2012 13:59 Comments || Top||

#8  I'm unable to figure out the compensation system here. PressTV has an annual budget of 250 billion rials (about $12 million dollars at today's street price). They have several regular correspondents (Gordon Duff who is the main source for this article and has admitted proudly that he makes up stuff, is one of them).

Probably there is enough money so that every now and then they pay somebody big bucks and inspire a lot of wannabees.
Posted by: lord garth || 12/19/2012 14:48 Comments || Top||

#9  I bet serving their Anti-American Islamic masters is reward enough for many
Posted by: Frank G || 12/19/2012 15:13 Comments || Top||


Iran Atomic Energy Association: country to continue enriching uranium
Head of Iran's Atomic Energy Association Fereidoon Abbasi said that the country needs to continue enriching uranium to 20 percent, IRIB News reported. Abbasi said enriching uranium to 20 percent for the Tehran reactor is Iran's right, which will be defended.

"Twenty percent enrichment may not be something the Westerners agree with, however this is the right of Iranian people," he said.

Abbasi added, that according to the report of IAEA's Board of Governors, the agency's stance towards Iran has not changed.

Several days ago, member of Iranian parliament's national security committee, Nozar Shafie said that Iran can exit the NPT, if the pressure on country continues to intensify.
Posted by: Steve White || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [215 views] Top||


Major Exodus of Palestinians from Yarmuk Camp into Lebanon
[An Nahar] Leb saw a mass influx of Paleostinians on Tuesday, as hundreds fled mounting violence in the Yarmuk refugee camp in Syria and entered through the Masnaa border in the east, an Agence La Belle France Presse correspondent said.

They will join about 2,000 other Paleostinians who crossed into Leb over the past three days, according to estimates by the U.N. agency for Paleostinian refugees (UNRWA) and the Lebanese General Security.

The correspondent said that dozens of buses and cars carrying Paleostinians had arrived on the Lebanese side by midday.

The passengers told news hounds they were coming from the Yarmuk refugee camp, which suffered unprecedented air strikes on Sunday that left eight civilians dead, according to one watchdog.

"There is shelling in several areas of the camp and most people have left," one young man said on condition of anonymity.

An official from the newly-formed Syrian-Paleostinian displacement committee, responsible for the refugees coming to the Beddawi and Nahr al-Bared camps in northern Leb, said that between 60 and 70 families had arrived in the past 48 hours and were placed in homestays with relatives.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [219 views] Top||


Rebel control of Yarmouk 'real gain for opposition'
[JPost] The capture by Syrian rebel forces of a Paleostinian refugee camp in southern Damascus
...Home to a staggering array of terrorist organizations...
is another significant gain for the opposition in the capital, Israeli experts said on Tuesday.

"It is another tactical development that, taken together with other developments, makes for a dramatic change [for the rebels] because it is another neighborhood in Damascus," Prof. Eyal Zisser, who heads the Department of Middle Eastern and African History at Tel Aviv University, told The Jerusalem Post.

According to Zisser, the rebel gains inside the capital are a sign that this is the beginning of the end for Syrian Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Before going into the family business Pencilneck was an eye doctor...
. However,
corruption finds a dozen alibis for its evil deeds...
it is unlikely that his regime will collapse quickly.

"That end can take a long time to come," Zisser added.

Brig.-Gen. (res.) Shlomo Brom, an expert on Syria and the Paleostinians at Tel Aviv's Institute for National Security Studies, said that Paleostinian support for Assad had waned well before the latest violence in Yarmouk.

"The Paleostinians are Sunnis and have been sympathetic to the opposition," Brom said.

The Syrian conflict has split Sunni loyalties, with Hezbollah following its patron Iran in backing Assad. In July, pan-Arabic newspaper Asharq Alawsat reported that the leadership of the Paleostinian Islamic Jihad
...created after many members of the Egyptian Mohammedan Brotherhood decided the organization was becoming too moderate. Operations were conducted out of Egypt until 1981 when the group was exiled after the liquidation of President Anwar Sadat. They worked out of Gaza until they were exiled to Lebanon in 1987, where they clove tightly to Hezbollah. In 1989 they moved to Damascus, where they remain a subsidiary of Hezbollah...
had left Syria for Iran but still remained on good terms with the Assad regime.

However,
we can't all be heroes. Somebody has to sit on the curb and applaud when they go by...
Paleostinian Sunni terror group Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, closed its offices in Damascus earlier this year, announcing in February that they were turning against the Alawite Assad and instead supporting the Sunni rebels.

In October, Syrian rebels announced they had begun arming sympathetic Paleostinians, who would form a group called the Liwa al-Asifa (Storm Brigade) to fight against the PFLP-GC and take its Yarmouk stronghold.

The PFLP-GC have accused the Liwa al-Asifa of trying to stir up trouble within the Paleostinian refugee community in Yarmouk, while Syrian rebels have accused the PFLP-GC of stifling Paleostinian dissent against Assad.

Last month, PFLP-GC sources said that Liwa al-Asifa fighters had critically injured a senior PFLP-GC leader and killed four others in an boom-mobileing attack in Yarmouk.

Now, with Yarmouk fallen to the rebels, PFLP-GC fighters are also starting to defect and join the opposition forces, Rooters reported on Monday, citing Paleostinian sources.

Many of the defections came on Saturday, the same day that PFLP-GC leader Ahmed Jibril fled the Yarmouk camp with his son, the sources said.

Like Zisser, Brom believes that if the Syrian rebels' claim of taking the Yarmouk camp is true, it is significant only in that it is another gain for the opposition within Damascus, and not because it is a Paleostinian area.
Posted by: Fred || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [226 views] Top||


Iran Hacking Ships' Transponders
The latest round of sanctions has caused Iran to come up with a number of new methods to get around these prohibitions. Iranian agents are offering deep discounts to buyers willing to create false documents and move the Iranian crude. Selling oil at discounts of 30 percent or more still costs Iran. So also does the expense of secretly buying tankers that will pretend to belong to another country while moving the black market oil. While Iran has been successful in the past, that was because it was often moving items (like weapons components) that could be hidden in a cargo container. Oil is another matter. Iran has experimented with using shipping containers to smuggle oil but this is very inefficient and you can still get caught. Iran fears that between the CIA (photo satellites and spies) and the maritime insurance industry (that monitors world shipping via transponders and other sightings) it will be very difficult to move the illegal oil.

This led Iran to come up with ways to confuse the international ship tracking system. These "maritime security technologies" were developed as a safety feature, and have proved valuable providing the positions of ships caught in storms or taken by pirates. AIS (Automated Identification System) and INMARSAT (International Maritime Satellite) were originally developed to make it easier for ships to track other nearby ships at sea. It enables shipping companies keep track of their vessels, no matter where they are on the planet. These two systems are now required by law (international agreements) for all sea going vessels greater than 300-tons. The technology has worked, and the U.S. Navy has found them particularly useful in counter-terror operations. Coast Guards the world over have also found the systems a big help. Iran often just has two ships trade INMARSAT IDs while they are near each other, leaving the U.S., or anyone else checking INMARSAT data, unable to track ships that have been switched.

But apparently pirates in some areas have gained access to the systems (via bribes or theft) and an increasing number of pirate attacks appear to have been helped by technology meant just to safeguard ships at sea. Iran, and other nations involved in smuggling learned how to have INMARSAT send a false signal, concealing where the ship actually is. This can work for a while, but a nation with lots of recon satellites, warships and cooperation from most of the world's shipping, can get around this. The Iranians are aware of the satellites and other means of double-checking transponder data and is constantly coming up with schemes to confound the American snoopers. Since Iran has been under sanctions for decades for being an outlaw state, threatening more punishment is seen as a challenge not a threat.

Posted by: Pappy || 12/19/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [259 views] Top||

#1  If the ships were to sink after having been located, their location would be fairly well known for some time to come.
just sayin....
Posted by: USN,Ret. || 12/19/2012 23:06 Comments || Top||



Bookmark
E-Mail Me

The Classics
The O Club
Rantburg Store
Comments Spam
The Bloids
The Never-ending Story
Thugburg
RSS Links
Gulf War I
The Way We Were
Bio
Sink Trap

Alzheimer's Association
Day by Day
Counterterrorism
Hair Through the Ages


On Sale now!


A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.

Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.

Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has dominated Mexico for six years.
Click here for more information

Meet the Mods
In no particular order...
Steve White
Seafarious
Pappy
lotp
Scooter McGruder
john frum
tu3031
badanov
sherry
ryuge
GolfBravoUSMC
Bright Pebbles
trailing wife
Gloria
Fred

Two weeks of WOT
Wed 2012-12-19
  Three more polio workers shot in Pakistan; eight dead in 48 hours
Tue 2012-12-18
  Syrian rebels take control of Damascus Palestinian camp
Mon 2012-12-17
  Rebel Offensive In Hama
Sun 2012-12-16
  Rockets Fired on Peshawar Airport, Five Dead, Dozens Injured
Sat 2012-12-15
  Tunisian Salafists attack bar, call drinkers 'infidels'
Fri 2012-12-14
  Coca-Cola resumes its production in Somalia
Thu 2012-12-13
  'Friends of Syria' Recognize Syrian Opposition
Wed 2012-12-12
  Syria Fires Scud Missiles at Insurgents, U.S. Says
Tue 2012-12-11
  North Korea 'launches long-range rocket'
Mon 2012-12-10
  Rebels Seize Chunk of Aleppo Base as Fighting Rages across Syria
Sun 2012-12-09
  Mohammad Ahmed Almansoor Drone-zapped in North Wazoo
Sat 2012-12-08
  Abu-Zaid al Kuwaiti Drone-zapped During Breakfast
Fri 2012-12-07
  6 dead, 450 injured in clashes at Egypt's presidential palace
Thu 2012-12-06
  Two Dead as Egypt┬áIslamists Overrun Opposition Tents
Wed 2012-12-05
  Hundreds of thousands besiege Egypt's presidential palace to protest draft constitution

Better than the average link...



Rantburg was assembled from recycled algorithms in the United States of America. No trees were destroyed in the production of this weblog. We did hurt some, though. Sorry.
23.20.220.61
Paypal:
WoT Operations (13)    Non-WoT (11)    Opinion (4)    (0)    Politix (3)