Hi there, !
Today Sun 03/16/2014 Sat 03/15/2014 Fri 03/14/2014 Thu 03/13/2014 Wed 03/12/2014 Tue 03/11/2014 Mon 03/10/2014 Archives
Rantburg
424392 articles and 1489636 comments are archived on Rantburg.

Today: 62 articles and 157 comments as of 11:48.
Post a news link    Post your own article   
Area: WoT Operations    Non-WoT    Opinion        Politix    Posting Order
Drone Strike Kills 2 'Qaida' in Yemen
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 2: WoT Background
0 [202] 
0 [160] 
4 21:42 Frank G [408] 
2 16:55 Redneck Jim [191] 
0 [170] 
0 [165] 
0 [158] 
0 [176] 
0 [146] 
0 [153] 
0 [164] 
2 16:58 Redneck Jim [259] 
0 [151] 
0 [152] 
4 16:59 Redneck Jim [246] 
0 [139] 
0 [182] 
0 [151] 
2 17:05 Redneck Jim [199] 
Page 1: WoT Operations
5 22:19 Don Vito [601]
5 14:52 Bob Omalet6364 [2816]
1 14:54 Bob Omalet6364 [239]
0 [294]
0 [191]
1 08:05 M. Murcek [209]
0 [623]
0 [168]
0 [356]
3 08:35 Glenmore [322]
0 [211]
0 [201]
0 [225]
4 21:24 Barbara [415]
0 [350]
0 [238]
1 21:37 Frank G [415]
0 [259]
0 [196]
1 11:45 Ebbang Uluque6305 [230]
0 [188]
2 17:18 Redneck Jim [422]
Page 3: Non-WoT
3 19:12 Ebbang Uluque6305 [251]
11 23:27 SteveS [515]
13 23:26 gorb [592]
11 20:03 Bugs Hitler6550 [476]
11 22:55 Classical_Liberal [510]
5 22:01 Frank G [517]
0 [155]
0 [133]
1 22:24 Frank G [295]
6 22:22 Frank G [453]
1 23:29 gorb [392]
0 [173]
Page 4: Opinion
7 22:29 Glenmore [504]
0 [281]
0 [169]
0 [192]
6 09:52 Muggsy Trotsky4511 [354]
Page 6: Politix
4 20:05 Glenmore [408]
9 22:58 Frank G [625]
10 17:34 OldSpook [559]
22 23:19 Zenobia Floger6220 [806]
Africa Horn
Somali suspects in Nairobi attack to seek bail
A lawyer representing four Somalis charged with helping terrorists attack Nairobi's Westgate Mall last year will, once again, petition the court to release the defendants on bail pending an April 15 court hearing.

"I don't want to anticipate the results of my application one way or the other," lawyer Mbugua Mureithi told Anadolu Agency on Wednesday. "Better wait for the final word from the court."
Oh, the suspense. Will the court order bail for four people responsible in part for the murder of dozens in a terrorist attack in a shopping mall?
"But I expect the rights of the accused persons to be released on bail to be respected by the court," Mureithi said.

The four defendants -- Hassan Abdi Mohamed, Mohamed Osman Ali, Ilyas Yusuf Warsame and Gerald Hassan Fer -- are charged with helping terrorists carry out a deadly attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall last September that left 67 people dead.

The four men had been granted bail by a Nairobi magistrate on February 12. But Director of Public Prosecutors Keriako Tobiko immediately appealed the lower court's decision before the High Court, demanding a stay. The court subsequently ruled that the suspects should remain in custody.

Nevertheless, Mureithi asserted that his clients' trial was proceeding well.

"It's half-way. So far, so good," he said.

"Twenty of the 40 witnesses expected to be called by the prosecution have already testified," the lawyer added. "And none of them has pointed a finger at the suspects."

"We're saying -- and we shall say so before the judge --that the suspects are totally unconnected to the charges against them," he said.
Posted by: Steve White || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [139 views] Top|| File under:


Africa North
Egypt Has Destroyed 1,370 Gaza Smuggling Tunnels
[An Nahar] Egypt's military said Wednesday it has destroyed 1,370 smuggling tunnels under its border with the Gazoo Strip, as Cairo's ties remain sour with the Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, movement that rules the Paleostinian enclave.
Just looking at the map, you wouldn't think the terrain on which Gaza sits could support that many tunnels...
Ties took a turn for the worse after the military's July ouster of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi
...the former president of Egypt. A proponent of the One Man, One Vote, One Time principle, Morsi won election after the deposal of Hosni Mubarak and jumped to the conclusion it was his turn to be dictator...
, who belongs to the Moslem Brüderbund, with which Hamas is affiliated.

The statement did not say when the tunnels were destroyed, but the military has poured troops into the adjacent Sinai Peninsula to counter militancy that has grown since July.

The tunnels, under the town of Rafah, are used to transfer food, fuel and consumer products into the densely populated Paleostinian enclave.

But Hamas and other krazed killer groups reportedly use their own more secret tunnels to bring in arms and money.

Gazoo has been under blockade since 2006, after gunnies captured an Israeli soldier in a cross-border raid.

Egypt accuses Hamas of having colluded with the Brotherhood in carrying out "terror attacks" on its territory in the past few years.

Dozens of alleged Hamas gunnies have been named among scores of defendants, including Morsi, in trials for organizing jailbreaks and attacking cop shoppes during the 2011 revolt that toppled strongman Hosni Mubarak
...The former President-for-Life of Egypt, dumped by popular demand in early 2011...

In a separate espionage trial, Morsi and 35 other defendants are accused of conspiring with foreign powers, including Sunni Mohammedan Hamas and Shiite Iran, to destabilize Egypt.

Hamas has denied Egyptian accusations that it is involved in fighting in the restive Sinai Peninsula.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [408 views] Top|| File under: Hamas

#1  The border with Egypt looks to be less than 10 miles long per Google maps. If they destroyed 1,370 tunnels in less than 10 miles, then they destroyed more than 137 tunnels per mile. You'd think the border would collapse.
Posted by: Snusort Spomose2148 || 03/13/2014 15:46 Comments || Top||

#2  This should make digging a sea level Gaza/Egypt canal from Israel to the ocean easier.
Posted by: 3dc || 03/13/2014 16:04 Comments || Top||

#3  Fgypt needs to sow mines/explosives with a very sensitive fuse, too sensitive for re-use, add a
time delay, and blow the tunnel.

Good luck digging there again. Hey Abdrool what's th-- Blam.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 03/13/2014 16:53 Comments || Top||

#4  I see a giant septic system field
Posted by: Frank G || 03/13/2014 21:42 Comments || Top||


Security is my priority, no one to blame for poor security - Thinni
[Libya Herald] Caretaker Prime Minister Abdullah Thinni said that security was his priority during his brief two week tenure.

Asked what were his priorities in his new job at his first presser today, former Defence Minister Thinni said that security was his main priority "especially in Benghazi and Derna" where everyday there are liquidations.

However,
the way to a man's heart remains through his stomach...
Thinni refused to blame his former boss Ali Zeidan for the poor security situation in Libya. The new caretaker Prime Minister preferred to blame Libya's post revolutionary situation and weak state, including the widespread dispersion of weapons.

Thinni admitted that the security issue was "a big challenge".

It will be recalled that Abdullah Thinni was not credited with having made any change on the security front in his previous role as Defence Minister.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [153 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Abdullah Al-Thinni - caretaker Prime Minister for two weeks
[Libya Herald] The country's new caretaker Prime Minister, Abdullah Al-Thinni, was quickly sworn-in late in the day at yesterday's dramatic General National Congress (GNC) session.

Thinni, who will be Prime Minister for all of two weeks while the opposing blocs in the GNC agree on a more permanent replacement for Ali Zeidan, lived in the Busleem district of Tripoli
...a confusing city, one end of which is located in Lebanon and the other end of which is the capital of Libya. Its chief distinction is being mentioned in the Marine Hymn...
and hails from the southern town of Ghadames.

He graduated from military college in 1976 and then fought in the Libyan-Egyptian war while stationed in Tobruk.

Thinni was also a professor at the military college for seven years. However,
a clean conscience makes a soft pillow...
after his brother -- an Air Force pilot -- absconded to Egypt in a military plane in opposition to the Qadaffy regime, things became more difficult for Thinni, according to the Prime Minister's Office.

He served time in prison because of his brother's escape and faced other difficulties, until 1997 when he took early retirement.

Thinni had taken over the position of Defence Minister in August 2013 which had been vacant after previous Defence Minister Mohammed Barghathi was sacked towards the end of June, following widespread dissatisfaction with his responses to increased violence and killings in the country.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [151 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Africa Subsaharan
FG to go after Boko sponsors
[SUNNEWSONLINE] Indications have emerged that the federal government has concluded plans to go after the sponsors and perceived sympathizers of the Boko-Haram bully boyz group in the country.
Yes, a very, very brilliant idea. Will this include Muslim Nigerian politicians and naming Gulf Arab donors, perchance?
The decision Daily Sun authoritatively gathered was heightened by the recent killing of innocent school children at the Federal Government College (FGC), Buni Yadi, in Yobe State. The children were slaughtered, shot and burnt to death in their sleep by the bully boyz group.

This is coming just it was learnt that the Army Headquarters in Abuja has concluded plans to induct the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Special Reserve Battalion into the theatre of war in the north east.

The Chief of Army Staff Special Reserve Battalion also known as '101 Battalion' is on standby with very high morale to move to the north east.

The military source also informed Daily Sun that another impetus and advantage the forces of Evil enjoy is the pecuniary interest of most northern oil dealers who smuggle their petroleum allocation across the Nigerian boarders in Sokoto, Katsina, Kano, Yobe and Borno. This oil supply, we gathered has remained a boost to the mobility of the turbans, also lubricated their income and assisted them in other ways to continue to the assault on Nigeria.

The military said that for the war to be over soon, the federal government needs to foster a better manning of the borders through a joint operation of the Immigration, Customs and the joint military forces to make sure this leakage and passage of oil supply that runs into hundreds of tankers in a week doesn't continue. The COAS special reserve troops is the last crack alternative that is left as back-up for military emergencies, and for the COAS to throw this trump card entails the most decisive step to face Boko Haram
... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality...
headlong.

A reliable military source told Daily Sun that the movement which will commence any moment from now means that the whole army is going into the north east to engage the forces of Evil in a fierce battle to conquer them in the shortest possible time.

The source said there has been massive movement of soldiers to the North East with the latest being the deployment of 81 Battalion and 213 Battalion told Daily Sun that "as I speak to you now, 81, Battalion and 213 Battalion have already been inducted into the theatre while arrangement have reached an advanced stage to induct 101 Battalion any moment from now."

According to the source, 101 Battalion is the Chief of Army Staff Special Reserve Battalion meaning that if the troop goes to the North East, a good percentage of the Nigeria Army would have been involved, and I don't need to tell you what the result will be like as soon as they are inducted into the theatre".

To underscore the seriousness of the operation, the Guards Brigade, which is a presidential guard was asked to contribute troops for the operation.

The source further stated that the essence "is to saturate the entire north east with adequate manpower, more artillery pieces and armoured carriers from all parts of the country to that area and the overall effect is that the three months notice by the Chef of Defence Staff is achievable."

Two military sources also pointed out that the seriousness of the army that has been challenged severally by the incessant comments by boko haram commanders of their ability to defeat the Nigerian military, is a clear indication that the pronouncement by the Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshall Alex Badeh to end insurgency by April, was feasible.

Daily Sun also gathered that the battle against the forces of Evil has taken a new dimension as the army has deployed its full arsenal of war with the deployment of high calibre of equipment fit for the purpose.

Unlike before when they operated on internal security strategy using light weapons and applied minimum force, the story has changed since the appointment of the new Chief of Army Staff Lt-Gen. Kenneth Minimah.

In the past few days, military sources admitted that the forces of Evil have been terribly routed, with many of them fleeing the zone into neighbouring countries from which they come.

Few of them that still stuck to their guns have found abode in Adamawa, where they have been sneaking in and attacking innocent Nigerians in the past few days.

Similarly, several armoury used by the forces of Evil have equally been located by troops and destroyed just as those captured by solders alive are said display shocking cowardice pleading with the soldiers not to kill them as they are ready to confess.

"Some of them behave exactly like little children if you understand what I mean, they don't behave like men, they cry, beg and ask for forgiveness, it is a very shameful sight."

So far, Daily Sun was informed that the soldiers are now taking the war to the doorsteps of the Boko Haram group who are now on the retreat.

The forces of Evil are said to have abandoned their camps as the soldiers have made their abode too uncomfortable.

According to intelligence report obtain by the military about three hundred truck load of petroleum product leaves the country every week through Sokoto, Katsina and the other borders.

The terrorist group with the help of their supporters in government use the proceeds from the sale of the oil to unleash terror on Nigerians.

The source while noting that the operation to mop up the bully boyz is not a difficult one as such, however, said "there is a bigger dimension to our discovery in fighting the turbans.

"The oil trade route is like the revival of the Trans-Sahara trade route during the slave trade years we were taught in primary school.

"The bully boyz depend highly on petroleum product because it us very cheap compared to that of other countries and coupled with the removal of fuel subsidy."
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [164 views] Top|| File under: Boko Haram


Arabia
UAE Summons Iraq Envoy to Protest Saudi Terror Accusations
[An Nahar] The United Arab Emirates summoned Iraq's ambassador on Wednesday to protest accusations by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki
... Prime Minister of Iraq and the secretary-general of the Islamic Dawa Party....
that Soddy Arabia
...a kingdom taking up the bulk of the Arabian peninsula. Its primary economic activity involves exporting oil and soaking Islamic rubes on the annual hajj pilgrimage. The country supports a large number of princes in whatcha might call princely splendor. When the oil runs out the rest of the world is going to kick sand in the Soddy national face...
was supporting terrorism, state media reported.

State Minister for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash handed ambassador Mowafak Mahdi Abboud a memorandum protesting Maliki's "claims that Saudi Arabia supports terrorism," the official WAM news agency said.

"Such remarks are false and not based on a proper assessment of the situation in the region concerning terrorism, especially as Saudi Arabia plays a significant role in combating all forms of terrorism," said Gargash.

In an interview aired on Saturday, Maliki charged that Saudi Arabia and neighboring Qatar were supporting Death Eater groups in Iraq and across the Middle East as well as terrorism worldwide.

Saudi Arabia on Monday slammed Maliki's accusations as "aggressive and irresponsible," saying they were aimed at "blaming others for the domestic failures of the Iraqi prime minister."

Riyadh accused Maliki's Shiite-led government of implementing "sectarian and exclusionary policies," in an apparent reference to the disgruntled Sunni Arab minority.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [160 views] Top|| File under:


Home Front: WoT
Report: U.S. Electric Grid 'Inherently Vulnerable' to Sabotage
[FreeBeacon] Multiple unreported incidents raise security concerns
Posted by: trailing wife || 03/13/2014 17:18 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [199 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Remember that urban areas usually do not generate their own modern sources of power or energy. NIMBY has a price to pay. Be nice to the people who do.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 03/13/2014 8:46 Comments || Top||

#2  Much adoo over nothing, go solar, each house a generator.

(And before you say it,Interconnected, so a failure, only mans there's a backup, people have been screaming about this for years. They don't realize the power companies are NOT interconnected.)

Problem solved.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 03/13/2014 17:05 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Operation underway despite ceasefire: Shahidullah Shahid
[DAWN] Security forces continue operations, arrests and torture of Taliban members despite the announcement of a ceasefire, Shahidullah Shahid, the spokespersons of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain, claimed in a statement issued to the press, DawnNews reported.

The statement added that raids, arrests and torture of prisoners was a violation of the ceasefire.

Giving details of the claims, the statement said that search operations and mortar shelling continued in Mohmand tribal region whereas several members of the banned outfit were tossed in the calaboose
Drop the heater, Studs, or you're hist'try!
in Bloody Karachi
...formerly the capital of Pakistain, now merely its most important port and financial center. It is among the largest cities in the world, with a population of 18 million, most of whom hate each other and many of whom are armed and dangerous...
, Swabi, Charsadda and 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.

The spokesperson further said that the TTP had no link with the Ahrarul Hind and Jundullah bully boy organizations.

He added that there were several elements withing the government ranks which were affecting dialogue process.

The TTP, an umbrella group of several bully boy factions, has waged a bloody seven-year war against the Pak state, leaving thousands dead in the violence.

Prime Minister had announced the initiative of holding peace talks with the Taliban earlier in January this year.

Peace talks between the government and Taliban struck an impasse last month after the Taliban-linked gunnies murdered 23 kidnapped Pak soldiers.

The killings resulted in multiple targeted Arclight airstrikes by the military against suspected hideouts in the tribal northwest.

The Taliban then announced a one-month ceasefire which was reciprocated by the government which halted its Arclight airstrikes targeting gunnies and their hideouts.

The talks process has entered its decisive stage now with the government announcing the formation of a new committee to mediate with the Taliban's negotiating committee.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [170 views] Top|| File under: TTP


Top military brass reaffirms resolve to fight terror
[DAWN] Top leadership of all three armed forces of Pakistain Wednesday reaffirmed their resolve to fight the menace of terrorism under a comprehensive strategy within the policy parameters set by the politicianship.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee meeting (JCSC) was held at the Joint Staff Headquarters in Rawalpindi with General Rashad Mahmood in the chair, said a blurb issued by ISPR.

The meeting was attended by Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif, Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Mohammad Asif Sandila, Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt, Secretary Defence, Secretary Defence Production and other senior military officers from the three services.

The meeting took place the same day when central front man of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain (TTP), Shahidullah Shahid accused the government of violating the month-long ceasefire by continuing with raids, arrests and torture of Taliban prisoners.

The top military officials assessed and evaluated the operational preparedness of the armed forces, said the blurb.

The meeting also took into consideration the issues related to national security and emerging regional environment along with progress on the agenda points of the last meeting.

Participants expressed their satisfaction over the standard of preparedness of armed forces to take on the challenges being faced by the country.

The gathering was briefed about internal and external security threats including the situation in the tribal areas and talks with the TTP.

The ongoing peace talks between the government and Taliban struck an impasse last month after the Taliban-linked bully boyz murdered 23 kidnapped Pak paramilitary soldiers.

The killings resulted in multiple targeted Arclight airstrikes by the military against suspected hideouts in the tribal northwest bordering with Afghanistan.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [165 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan


Taliban committee to facilitate direct talks with TTP
[DAWN] Taliban committee will visit North Wazoo on Thursday to pave the way for timing and venue of direct dialogue between the new government committee and the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain (TTP), Radio Pakistain reported on Wednesday.

This was decided during a meeting of the Taliban committee's members Maulana Samiul Haq
...the Godfather of the Taliban, leader of his own faction of the JUI. Known as Mullah Sandwich for his habit of having two young boys at a time...
‚ Prof Muhammad Ibrahim and Maulana Yousaf with Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan here.

The meeting reviewed the progress made so far in dialogue with the Taliban and the future line of action.

The interior minister said the dialogue process was being pursued with all seriousness and in this connection a new government committee has been formed.

Following an all important meeting of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif
... served two non-consecutive terms as prime minister, heads the Pakistain Moslem League (Nawaz). Noted for his spectacular corruption, the 1998 Pak nuclear test, border war with India, and for being tossed by General Musharraf...
with Pakistain Tehrik-e-Insaf
...a political party in Pakistan. PTI was founded by former Pakistani cricket captain and philanthropist Imran Khan. The party's slogan is Justice, Humanity and Self Esteem, each of which is open to widely divergent interpretations....
(PTI) chief Imran earlier today, in which the latter assured complete support in the government-led peace initiative, the two parties also agreed on members for a new committee to represent the government in the dialogue process with the TTP.

The new committee will be headed by Federal Secretary Habibullah Khattak, and will include Additional Secretary to the Prime Minister Fawad Hasan Fawad and Additional Secretary FATA Arbab Arif, sources told Dawn.com.

Former member of the peace talks committee Rustam Shah Mohmand will retain his place on the negotiating team, the sources added.

There was, however, no formal announcement by either the federal government or the PTI leadership regarding the formation of the new committee.

Chaudhry Nisar said the government would welcome those who tread the path of peace and action would be taken against those who want to sabotage the dialogue process.

Maulana Samiul Haq welcomed resolve of the government and said there should be no delay in talks to foil designs of 'anti-dialogue elements'.

The meeting decided that the new government committee would reach North Waziristan for formal talks as soon as time and venue of the meeting is fixed.

The ongoing peace talks between the government and Taliban struck an impasse last month after the Taliban-linked Death Eaters murdered 23 kidnapped Pak paramilitary soldiers.

The killings resulted in multiple targeted Arclight airstrikes by the military against suspected hideouts in the tribal northwest bordering with Afghanistan.

The Taliban then announced a one-month ceasefire which was reciprocated by the government which halted its Arclight airstrikes targeting Death Eaters and their hideouts.

The dialogue process has entered its decisive stage now with the government announcing the formation of a new committee to mediate with the Taliban leadership.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [158 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan


Imran assures complete support for Sharif's peace initiative
[DAWN] After months of disagreement, the federal government has finally managed to get the Pakistain Tehrik-e-Insaf
...a political party in Pakistan. PTI was founded by former Pakistani cricket captain and philanthropist Imran Khan. The party's slogan is Justice, Humanity and Self Esteem, each of which is open to widely divergent interpretations....
(PTI) leadership on board with its strategy of tackling the bloody seven year-old Pak Taliban insurgency.

In a meeting on Wednesday, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif
... served two non-consecutive terms as prime minister, heads the Pakistain Moslem League (Nawaz). Noted for his spectacular corruption, the 1998 Pak nuclear test, border war with India, and for being tossed by General Musharraf...
took the PTI chief Imran Khan
... aka Taliban Khan, who who convinced himself that playing cricket qualified him to lead a nuclear-armed nation with severe personality problems...
into confidence on national security issues including peace talks with Pak Talibs.

According to sources, the formation of a new committee of government negotiators and a strategy in case of failure of peace talks was discussed at the key meeting which lasted almost two hours.

Speaking to media representatives after the meeting at his Islamabad residence, Khan said that the government was moving in the right direction with regards to negotiations with the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain (TTP), which has waged a bloody seven-year war against the Pak state.

"I understand that the government, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar have been working in the right direction under great pressure," he told news hounds.

Khan assured complete support from his party and the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
... formerly NWFP, still Terrorism Central...
government in the peace initiatives taken by the Sharif's government.

"If peace talks fail, then we always have the option of a military operation," said Khan.

The PTI chief commended the federal government and said that recent initiatives had successfully divided snuffies in favour of peace talks and those against it. He said it was for the first time that the federal government had made serious efforts for peace through dialogue and was achieving good results.

Khan said: "I congratulate the government on creating divisions among snuffies through dialogue process which is a major achievement. Now there are snuffies willing to talk and small groups opposed to the grinding of the peace processor."
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [176 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan


'No Pakistani civilians killed by US drones in 2013'
[DAWN] No Pak non-combatants were killed by US drones last year as Washington slashed its controversial use of the pilotless planes in the country, a UN expert said Wednesday.

"I am pleased to be able to report a very significant de-escalation in the use of armed drones by the United States in... Pakistain," Ben Emmerson told news hounds in Geneva.

The total number of recorded strikes in 2013 was down to 27 from a peak of 128 in 2010, said Emmerson, who monitors respect for human rights
...which are usually entirely different from personal liberty...
in counter-terrorism operations.

"But perhaps most significantly, for the first time in nine years there were no reports of civilian casualties during 2013 in the FATA area of Pakistain," he added.

The FATA, or Federally Administered Tribal Areas, is a region bordering Afghanistan where Pakistain's military is battling the Taliban and the United States has used drones to strike at al Qaeda krazed killers.

Drones, which beam footage to operators at distant US bases who then launch the strikes, are meant to allow precision hits.

But they have caused uproar in Pakistain over civilian casualties in botched strikes, as well as concerns that their use has hampered efforts to hold peace talks with the Taliban and breached national illusory sovereignty.

Last May, US President Barack Obama
Republicans can come along for the ride, but they've got to sit in the back...
raised the bar for launching attacks.

But despite the change of tack in Pakistain, Emmerson said that the picture in Afghanistan and Yemen was "much bleaker."

Citing a report by the UN Mission in Afghanistan, he said that there was a threefold increase in drone-related civilian casualties between 2012 and 2013.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [146 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in Pakistan


Israel-Palestine-Jordan
Jordan MPs Demand Government free killer of Israeli girls
[An Nahar] The lower house of Jordan's parliament, incensed over the shooting death of a Jordanian judge by Israeli soldiers, demanded Wednesday that the government free a soldier who murdered Israeli schoolgirls in 1997.

In a non-binding resolution, all 150 members of the lower house said "we demand that the government release Jordanian soldier Ahmad Dakamseh from jail."

Dakamseh had opened fire on a group of Israeli schoolgirls as they visited Baqura, a scenic peninsula on the Jordan River near the Israeli border.

He killed seven of the girls and maimed five more, as well as a teacher, and was sentenced to life in prison.

"We also demand that the government expel the Israeli ambassador in Amman and recall the Jordanian ambassador in Israel in response to the killing of Jordanian judge Raed Zeiter," the resolution said.

It gave the government until Tuesday to meet its demands, failing which it threatened a no-confidence vote against Prime Minister Abdullah Nsur.

The shooting Monday set off a diplomatic row between Israel and Amman, with Nsur saying Israel is "completely responsible" and demanding an apology for the "hideous" shooting.

Israel has expressed regret for the killing, but stopped short of apologizing to Jordan, which is the only Arab country besides Egypt to have made peace with the Jewish state.

The lower house said that "what happened proved that Israel is a racist country that does not want peace."

The Israeli army said Zeiter, 38 had charged at the soldiers with a metal pole while shouting "Allahu Akbar" (God is greatest), prompting them to fire at his legs.

"The suspect then began to strangle a soldier and the force resorted to using live fire once again," killing the man, the army said.

Jordan's opposition Islamists, youth groups and others have said they plan to hold a demonstration in central Amman to protest Zeiter's killing.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [191 views] Top|| File under:

#1  In a non-binding resolution, all 150 members of the lower house said "we demand that the government release Jordanian soldier Ahmad Dakamseh from jail."

Non Binding hunh, cowards.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 03/13/2014 9:34 Comments || Top||

#2  Inject him with something that turns you purple, see who shows up purple, arrest them.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 03/13/2014 16:55 Comments || Top||


Southeast Asia
Convicted terrorist sez Malasian group plotted airliner hijacking in 2001.
A terror group from Malaysia plotted in the weeks after 9/11 to attack an airplane using explosives hidden in their shoes, according to a former terrorist who claimed to have supplied the bomb.

Saajid Badat, a British national and terrorist-turned-government witness, told a New York court Tuesday that he met the group of Malaysians, which included a pilot, in late 2001 and claimed they planned to blow open a plane’s cockpit door in order to carry out a 9/11-style hijacking.

Badat said he had two shoe bombs for his own terror plot before he gave one to the Malaysians for their “operation.” Badat wore the other as he flew from Karachi, Pakistan to Holland and from there to England in December 2001. He did not detonate the device on those flights, he said, because he wanted to save it for an attack on an American airline – an operation he was planning with now-convicted shoe bomber Richard Reid.

Once in the U.K., however, Badat said he backed out of his operation after speaking with his parents, leaving Reid to go it alone. Reid was arrested after he failed to detonate explosives hidden in his shoes while aboard American Airlines Flight 63 on Dec. 22, 2001.

Badat was arrested in England in 2005 and pleaded guilty to a count of “conspiracy with others to destroy a passenger airliner whilst in flight by igniting a high-explosive device,” according to British authorities.

For whatever reason, it appears the Malaysia plot never went ahead. Badat did not name the group in question in his testimony and the National Counterterrorism Center does not list any major terrorist groups being based in Malaysia. Department of Justice prosecutors declined to elaborate on Badat’s testimony and the CIA declined to comment. A senior intelligence official would only say American intelligence was “aware of the Malaysia 2001 plot.”

In 2006, then-President George W. Bush said that in October 2001, Khalid Shaikh Mohammad, the so-called mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, had "set in motion" another plan to hijack planes, this time using terrorist recruits from Southeast Asia. Bush said the operation was foiled when one of the plotters was arrested in Asia. At the time, however, several counter-terrorism officials said the plot was not "definitive" and never got past the "thought" stage.

James Keith, former U.S. Ambassador to Malaysia, told ABC News Tuesday that Malaysia is not known as a harbor for terrorists and that country’s biggest threat when it comes to extremism comes in the form of spillover from its neighbors. For instance, Indonesia, to Malaysia’s south, is home to Jemaah Islamiya, the terrorist network blamed for a string of attacks in the 2000s including the 2002 Bali bombings, which claimed 202 lives. In recent years that organization has been “overshadowed” by splinter groups, according to the NCTC’s profile of the group.
Posted by: Besoeker || 03/13/2014 08:32 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [202 views] Top|| File under:


Satellite looking into missing Malaysia flight detects 'suspected crash area'
[CNN] A Chinese satellite looking into the mysterious disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 "observed a suspected crash area at sea," a Chinese government agency said -- a potentially pivotal lead into what has been a frustrating search for the aircraft.

China's State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense announced the discovery, including images of what it said were "three suspected floating objects and their sizes."

The objects aren't small: 13 by 18 meters (43 by 59 feet), 14 by 19 meters (46 by 62 feet) and 24 by 22 meters (79 feet by 72 feet). For reference, the wingspan of an intact Boeing 777-200ER like the one that disappeared is about 61 meters (200 feet) and its overall length is about 64 meters (210 feet).

The images were captured on March 9 -- which was the day after the plane went missing -- but weren't released until Wednesday.

The Chinese agency gave coordinates of 105.63 east longitude, 6.7 north latitude, which would put it in waters northeast of where it took off in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and south of Vietnam, near where the South China Sea meets the Gulf of Thailand.
Posted by: Fred || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [259 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The images were captured on March 9 -- which was the day after the plane went missing -- but weren't released until Wednesday.

Three days to sanitize the images?
Posted by: Pappy || 03/13/2014 12:34 Comments || Top||

#2  I suspect here's a bunch of floating crap, much like that seen from America, and doesn't mean a Damn Thing.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 03/13/2014 16:58 Comments || Top||


Malaysia Airlines 370 flight search widens
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia -- Malaysian authorities defended their handling of the hunt for the missing Boeing 777 on Wednesday even as they acknowledged they were unsure which direction the plane was headed when it disappeared, highlighting the massive task facing an international search mission now in its fifth day.

Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein described the multinational search for the missing plane as an unprecedented and complicated effort and defended his country's efforts. Some 43 ships and 39 aircraft from at least eight nations were scouring an area of 35,800 square miles.

"It's not something that is easy. We are looking at so many vessels and aircraft, so many countries to coordinate, and a vast area for us to search," he said. "But we will never give up. This we owe to the families" of those on board.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 took off from Kuala Lumpur for Beijing early Saturday morning and fell off civilian radar screens at 1:30 a.m. about 35,000 feet above the Gulf of Thailand between Malaysia and southern Vietnam. It sent no distress signals or any indication it was experiencing any problems.

Malaysian authorities have since said that air defense radar picked up traces of what might have been the plane turning back and flying until it reached the Strait of Malacca, a busy shipping lane west of the narrow nation some 250 miles from the plane's last known coordinates. Military and government officials on Wednesday said American experts, and the manufacturer of the radar systems, were examining that data to confirm it showed the Boeing 777. Until then, they said the search would continue on both sides of the country, with an equal focus.

Dozens of ships and planes searching waters have failed to turn up anything, prompting officials to expand the hunt. Malaysia asked India to join the search for the missing jet in waters near the Andaman Sea -- far to the northwest of its last reported position.

"As of today, we have not found anything, but we are extending (the search) further," Hishammuddin said.

The U.S. government has offered wide-ranging assistance, including investigators from the FBI, FAA and National Transportation Safety Board. On Wednesday, the NTSB said in a statement that its investigators, who have expertise in air-traffic control and radar, were providing technical assistance to Malaysian authorities. The investigators traveled to Kuala Lumpur during the weekend.

Air force chief Gen. Rodzali Daud said air defense radar showed an unidentified object at 2:15 a.m. about 200 miles northwest of Penang.

"I am not saying it's flight MH370. We are still corroborating this. It was an unidentifiable plot," he said.

It's unlikely the plane would have flown across Malaysia without being detected by civilian radar unless its electrical systems, including transponders allowing it to be identified by radar, were either knocked out or turned off.

If it did in fact change direction so dramatically to the southwest, the jet might have flown hundreds of miles off course without maintaining radio or data contact with controllers. For that to be possible, experts say the plane must have either suffered an electrical failure that disabled the transponder which reports location, altitude, and speed, or somebody in the cockpit deliberately turned it off.
That's the problem with relying on transponders. Turn it off and nobody on the civilian side knows where the heck the plane is.
Posted by: Steve White || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [182 views] Top|| File under:


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Four new Iranian oil storage facilities almost complete
What's interesting in this article is the reference to the amount of oil Iran currently exports...
Four new oil storage facilities with a total capacity of four million barrels is passing its final stages, the Shana News agency quoted Managing Director of the Iranian Oil Terminal Company Pirouz Mousavi as saying on March 11. The four facilities will be inaugurated at Iran's Kharg Island, located in the Persian Gulf.

The oil storage capacity of Kharg Island is currently about 28 million barrels, Mousavi added. The Kharg terminals have the capacity to export five million barrels of oil per day, he noted.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration released its latest Short Term Energy Outlook on Jan. 7. The report has presented some statistics about Iran's oil output in the previous year.

Based on the report, it is estimated that Iran produced 2.8 million barrels of oil per day excluding gas condensates in 2013 which is 170,000 barrels less than the preceding year. The report also puts Iran's estimated unplanned crude oil production outages in the second half of 2012 at 800,000 barrels per day.

In other words, Iran cut the aforementioned amount from its regular production by shutting down the wells in some oilfields. So the country produced 2,970 million barrels of oil per day in 2012, while it had the capacity to produce 3,770 million barrels.

EIA's report also shows that Iran produced 2.8 million barrels of oil per day in 2013, while the amount of estimated unplanned crude oil production outages was 600,000 barrels per day.

So the country's total production capacity at the end of 2013 was around 3.4 million barrels per day which is 370,000 barrels per day less than 2012.
And everyone talked about how well the sanctions were working...
Posted by: Steve White || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [152 views] Top|| File under:


Oman, Iran agree to build submarine gas pipeline
Oman signed an initial agreement with Iran Wednesday to build a $1 billion submarine pipeline to import gas from the Islamic republic, Oman's oil and gas minister said, AFP reported.
Oman can't get NG from the UAE and Qatar?
The agreement was reached on the first day of a visit by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, aimed at boosting ties between Tehran and its Gulf ally, and easing tension with other Gulf states. It follows a memorandum of understanding signed in 2009 to build a 200-kilometre (124-mile) undersea pipeline.

"We have signed an initial agreement to build a pipeline under the Gulf of Oman to transport gas from Iran to Oman," Mohammad al-Ramahi told AFP. The project should be completed by the end of 2017 and will cost around $1 billion (721 million euros), he said.

Ramahi said the two sides will begin technical and feasibility studies of the project, including deciding on the path of the pipeline, indicating that it might connect to Sohar industrial port in northern Oman.

Oman and Iran are seeking to expand trade, which reached $1 billion last year, as well as bilateral investments which they expect will top $10 billion by the end of this year, Iranian Ambassador Ali Akbar Sibeveih said Monday.
Posted by: Steve White || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [246 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I guess Oman's so much closer to the natural gas markets of Yemen.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 03/13/2014 0:16 Comments || Top||

#2  Accidents have happened before, to things resting on the sea floor... I mean, how would such a thing be guarded against a stray dragging anchor, or a dolphin with a laser on its head and a mischievous attitude?
Posted by: trailing wife || 03/13/2014 0:55 Comments || Top||

#3  Proposed pipeline below the water, Proposed inter-connecting Bridge above the water.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 03/13/2014 2:57 Comments || Top||

#4  TARGET.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 03/13/2014 16:59 Comments || Top||


Russia agrees to build 'two Iran nuclear plants'
Russia has signed a preliminary agreement to build at least two more nuclear power plants in the Iranian port city of Bushehr, Iran's official IRNA news agency reported on Wednesday.
Smart diplomacy™...
The deal was reached during a visit to Tehran on Tuesday by a senior official of Russia's state atomic energy agency Rosatom, IRNA said.

"Iran and Russia reached a preliminary agreement to build at least two new nuclear power plants," Iranian Atomic Energy Organisation spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi told the news agency.

The two new 1,000 megawatt plants will be built alongside the existing power station in Bushehr, which was also built by Russia, Kamalvandi said.
The current reactor might be end-of-life by the time the Russians build the new ones...
Further talks will be held on technical and financial aspects of the project but a final agreement is expected to be signed "very soon," he added.
Thing from Snowy Mountain notes: The article goes on to mention fears from the nations on the other side of the Persian Gulf about accidents and earthquakes and the like. Because apparently that's the main problem with Bushehr. BTW, they'll be paying for it with barter:
Iran is expected to fund the project on a barter basis. Iran's ambassador to Russia, Mehdi Sanaei, said last month that the close trading partners have been negotiating Iran's delivery of hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil per day in return for Russian goods and services, including the planned new nuclear plants.

Russian officials have neither confirmed nor denied the discussions, while stressing that they would not break U.N. sanctions.

But the White House has raised "serious concern" about the potential of the mooted deal to undermine EU and U.S. sanctions which it credits with bringing Iran to the nuclear negotiating table.
Posted by: Steve White || 03/13/2014 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [151 views] Top|| File under:



Who's in the News
34[untagged]
6Govt of Pakistan
5Arab Spring
4Boko Haram
2TTP
2Islamic Jihad
2al-Qaeda in North Africa
1al-Qaeda in Arabia
1Ansar al-Sharia
1al-Shabaab
1Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan
1Govt of Syria
1Hamas
1al-Qaeda in Pakistan

Bookmark
E-Mail Me

The Classics
The O Club
Rantburg Store
The Bloids
The Never-ending Story
Thugburg
Gulf War I
The Way We Were
Bio

Merry-Go-Blog
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
Besoeker
Glenmore
Frank G
3dc
Skidmark
Alaska Paul

Two weeks of WOT
Thu 2014-03-13
  Drone Strike Kills 2 'Qaida' in Yemen
Wed 2014-03-12
  Breaking: IDF tanks attack terror targets in Gaza in response to rocket fire
Tue 2014-03-11
  Yemen upholds 10-year jail for 11 Somali pirates
Mon 2014-03-10
  Suicide Bomber Kills 37 at Crowded Iraq Checkpoint
Sun 2014-03-09
  Gaza Militant Killed, 6 Hurt in 'Bomb-Making Exercise'
Sat 2014-03-08
  Saudi Lists 'Terror' Groups, Orders Foreign Fighters Home
Fri 2014-03-07
  Niger Extradites a Son of Qaddafi to Libya, Saying He Didn't 'Stay Quiet'
Thu 2014-03-06
  Drone Strike Kills 4 Qaida Suspects in Yemen
Wed 2014-03-05
  Israel Seizes Iranian Ship Packed With Advanced Rockets Bound For Palestinian Terrorists In Gaza
Tue 2014-03-04
  Egypt bans Hamas activities in Egypt
Mon 2014-03-03
  A day after Taliban ceasefire: jets bomb Taliban hideout; five killed
Sun 2014-03-02
  Blasts targeting polio team kill 11 in Khyber agency
Sat 2014-03-01
  ISIL Jihadists Retreat from Parts of North Syria after al-Nusra Ultimatum
Fri 2014-02-28
  PTI ends Nato supply blockade
Thu 2014-02-27
  Al Nusra jihadists declare war on ISIS jihadists
Wed 2014-02-26
  Jets pound militant hideouts in Waziristan; 30 killed

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.
3.93.75.30
Paypal:
WoT Operations (22)    Non-WoT (12)    Opinion (5)    (0)    Politix (4)