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Iraq Bombers Kill 43 as Millions Mark Shiite Holiday
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
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Government
Typhoon Scares Dems; Want Hearings on Climate Change
House Democrats on Wednesday seized on the devastating typhoon that hit the Philippines to call for a hearing on extreme storms and climate change.
Maybe everybody would forget about Obamacare?
Reps. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) and Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) said Typhoon Haiyan shows the need for the House Energy and Commerce Committee to explore the link between the changing climate and natural disasters.

Waxman and Rush said Republicans should abandon the efforts to stop Obama's climate change regulations and instead "hold a hearing with the world's leading experts on the relationship between extreme storms like Typhoon Haiyan and climate change."
Might be interesting, if both parties got to call their own "experts".
The letter cited a leaked Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report that said sea level rises, coastal flooding, storm surges and more are a direct result of climate change.
Posted by: Bobby || 11/15/2013 08:10 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [517 views] Top|| File under:

#1  One data point does not make a trend.

This year was one of the quietest for the Atlantic hurricane season.
Posted by: Rambler in Virginia || 11/15/2013 10:24 Comments || Top||

#2  Better to hold a hearing on appeasing Gordo, the God of storms and weather. It seems that our sacrifices have failed to please Him.
Posted by: Iblis || 11/15/2013 11:24 Comments || Top||

#3  Let's hear where the aid money and GW relocation funds came from.
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/15/2013 12:37 Comments || Top||

#4  Title should read: Obamacare Scares Dems; Want to Change Subject
Posted by: DoDo || 11/15/2013 13:11 Comments || Top||

#5  Look! Squirrel!

Same olde play book. Even the morons are catching on to the tactic.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 11/15/2013 19:55 Comments || Top||


Bangladesh
Compromise out of question: Khaleda
[Bangla Daily Star] BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia
Three-term PM of Bangla, widow of deceased dictator Ziaur Rahman, head of the Bangla Nationalist Party, an apparent magnet for corruption ...
today said they will not make any compromise with the "just and logical demand" for holding the next general under a non-party administration.

"There is no option in anyway to compromise with this demand," she said while exchanging views with a section of journalists at the Jatiya Press Club in the capital.

"To compromise is similar to allowing injustice. Our demand is very much logical," she said.

"This was not our demand. Rather it was yours. No we are pressing for the same demand."

She said the objective of her life is working for the wellbeing of the nation and its people. "We are not doing movement for any posts."

She vowed to continue the movement for the welfare of the countrymen as the responsibility of the opposition and there is no option of compromise to this end.

Khaleda supported the views of journalist leaders who in the meeting called upon the opposition leader to strengthen their movement to compel the "oppressive and undemocratic" government to quit.

She added, "If you and we can remain united, we will be able to establish a true democratic and people's government in power."

National Press Club President Kamal Uddin Sabuj, General Secretary Abdal Ahmed, president of Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) Ruhul Amin Gazi, Dainik Sangram Editor Abul Asad and Dainik Naya Diganta Editor Alamgir Mohiuddin, among others, were present.

Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [250 views] Top|| File under:


Iraq
Iraq Bombers Kill 43 as Millions Mark Shiite Holiday
[An Nahar] Attacks mostly against Shiites, including a suicide kaboom that destroyed a religious procession, killed 43 people in Iraq Thursday despite massive security deployed for one of the holiest days of their faith.

The bloodshed came as a flood of worshipers, including tens of thousands of foreign pilgrims, thronged the central shrine city of Karbala for the climax of Ashura, braving the repeated attacks by Sunni Death Eaters that have marred the festival in previous years.

The jacket wallah, who was disguised in a police uniform, struck in a Shiite-majority area of confessionally mixed Diyala province, north of Storied Baghdad
...located along the Tigris River, founded in the 8th century, home of the Abbasid Caliphate...
, killing 32 people and wounding 80, security and medical officials said.

It was the third attack of the day to target Shiites.

Earlier, coordinated blasts in the town of Hafriyah, south of the capital, killed nine people, while twin bombings in the northern oil city of Kirkuk maimed five.

A bombing also targeted an army patrol in a predominantly Sunni town north of Storied Baghdad, killing two soldiers.

Shiites from Iraq and around the world mark Ashura, which this year climaxed on Thursday, by setting up procession tents where pilgrims gather and food is distributed to passers-by.

An estimated two million faithful gathered in Karbala, site of the mausoleum of Imam Hussein, grandson of the Prophet Mohammed, whose death in the city at the hands of soldiers of the caliph Yazid in 680 AD lies at the heart of Islam's sectarian divide.

Tradition holds that the venerated imam was decapitated and his body mutilated.

To mark the occasion, modern-day Shiite devotees flood Hussein's mausoleum, demonstrating their ritual guilt and remorse for not defending him by beating their heads and chests and, in some cases, making incisions on their scalps with swords in ritual acts of self-flagellation.

Black-clad pilgrims packed the shrines of Hussein and his half-brother Abbas, listening over loudspeakers to the story of the battle in which Hussein was killed, as volunteers distributed food and water.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [728 views] Top|| File under: Islamic State of Iraq

#1  And everybody was wearing a Turban.
Posted by: Spereting Tingle4064 || 11/15/2013 7:24 Comments || Top||

#2  Turdband
Posted by: Shaise Glush9201 || 11/15/2013 8:21 Comments || Top||


Africa Horn
Kenya Revokes Citizenship from 104 in Security Clampdown
[An Nahar] Kenya said Thursday it had stripped 104 people of their citizenship as part of an ongoing security crackdown set in motion by the September attack on the Westgate shopping mall.

The country is currently carrying out a full audit of all national identity documents issued in recent years, cleaning out corruption from its immigration service and tightening up procedures at airports, ports and border posts.

The attack on the Westgate Mall, which was claimed by Somalia's al-Qaeda-inspired Shabaab rebels, left at least 67 dead and laid bare a string of national security failures.

"I have revoked 104 citizenship documents which we established were fraudulently acquired," Interior Minister Joseph Ole Lenku told news hounds, adding that legal action would be taken against the officials who issued the documents.

"Every nation in the world protects the sanctity of its citizenship documents. I have directed officers involved in the issuance of birth certificates, identification cards, passports, and work permits to strictly follow the law. Any officer who fails will be doing so at his or her own peril," he warned.

"The process of cleaning up government departments involved in the issuance of these critical documents has begun and is not about to end. It will continue until the last rotten apple is removed so that we have a clean and secure process," he stated.

Lenku said other measures underway included the installation of a data system that can be accessed by all border points in real time, with the installation of security cameras at all border entry points next on the list or priorities.

"This has significantly enhanced security for our people, and the government will continue investing more in modern technology as security challenges evolve," he added.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [337 views] Top|| File under: al-Shabaab

#1  "Every nation in the world protects the sanctity of its citizenship documents"

*inserts cynical laughter here*
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 10:14 Comments || Top||


Africa North
Libya 'seeks to make its laws more Islamic'
[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] Libya is seeking to revise existing legislation to make it conform more to Islamic sharia law, a justice ministry document obtained by AFP shows.

The text announces the establishment of a "committee charged with revising current legislation and to propose amendments that would not contradict the fundamental rules and regulations of Islamic law."

It said the 16-strong committee would be nominated by the supreme court and the Mufti, a religious expert on sharia.

The committee, which would be chaired by a judge, would also include professors from Islamic universities, according to the document.

Legislation amended by the committee would then be presented before Libya's top legislative authority the General National Congress for adoption.

One law imposing strict restrictions on polygamy, that was instituted by the regime of dictator Muammar Qadaffy
...Custodian of Wheelus AFB for 42 long years until he was ejected from the gene pool by his indignant citizens...
who was toppled and killed in 2011, was abolished after the revolution.

The justice ministry's plan would appear to be aimed at satisfying the demands of Salafist, or bad boy Sunni Mohammedan, groups in the violence-wracked North African nation.

On Tuesday, Ansar al-Sharia
...a Salafist militia which claims it is not part of al-Qaeda, even though it works about the same and for the same ends. There are groups of the same name in Tunisia and Yemen, with the Tunisian version currently most active...
, Libya's top jihadist group that has been blamed for unrest including a deadly attack on a US mission, said only Islamic law can boost security in the increasingly lawless country.

The heavily gang of ex-rebels is based in Benghazi, cradle of the 2011 uprising.

Ansar al-Sharia said it does not recognise state institutions, including the security services, accusing them of apostasy and of being "taghuts," or evil forces at the service of tyranny.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [260 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Afghanistan
Afghanistan Opium Harvest At Record High - UNODC
There's a cute little bar graph at the link, for those who are visual thinkers.
[BBC] Afghan opium cultivation has reached a record level, with more than 200,000 hectares planted with the poppy for the first time, the United Nations
...an organization which on balance has done more bad than good, with the good not done well and the bad done thoroughly...
says.

The UNODC report said the harvest was 36% up on last year, and if fully realised would outstrip global demand.

Most of the rise was in Helmand
...an Afghan province populated mostly by Pashtuns, adjacent to Injun country in Pak Balochistan...
province, where British troops are preparing to withdraw.

One of the main reasons the UK sent troops to Helmand was to cut opium production.

The head of the UN office for Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in Kabul, Jean-Luc Lemahieu, said that production was likely to rise again next year, amid uncertainty over the withdrawal of most foreign troops and the presidential election.

He said that the illegal economy was taking over in importance from legitimate business, and that prices remained high since there was a ready availability of cash in Afghanistan because of aid.

"As long as we think that we can have short-term, fast solutions for the counter-narcotics, we are continued to be doomed to fail," he added.

Mr Lemahieu said there had been some recent successes, including the arrest of leading figures in the drugs industry, but it could take 10-15 years to deal with Afghanistan's opium crisis, even if policies improved.

The report said the total area planted with poppies rose from 154,000 to 209,000 hectares, while potential production rose by 49% to 5,500 tonnes, more than the current global demand.

Half of the cultivation area is in Helmand province.

Meanwhile two northern provinces which had previously been declared poppy-free - Faryab and Balkh - lost that status.

The report called for an integrated, comprehensive response to the problem.

"If the drug problem is not taken more seriously by aid, development and security actors, the virus of opium will further reduce the resistance of its host, already suffering from dangerously low immune levels due to fragmentation, conflict, patronage, corruption and impunity," it said.

But the report said there were some encouraging signs, with police tripling their effectiveness to capture "well over 10%" of production and a growth in services set up to tackle addiction.

The findings of the latest report reverse a decline in production last year attributed to bad weather and disease.

However,
a woman is only as old as she admits...
cultivation has been rising yearly since 2010 despite government efforts to eradicate the crop.

More farmers have been trying to grow the poppy as the price of opium has been rising.

Afghanistan produces more than 90% of the world's opium.

Analysis
The consequences of Afghanistan's huge opium production have had an effect across society here. There are believed to be more than a million opium and heroin addicts - one of the largest levels in the world - taking advantage of plentiful supplies.

The amount of land given over to opium in 2013 was 209,000 hectares. The potential production from that is estimated to be more than annual global demand, according to the head of the UN office for Drugs and Crime in Kabul, Jean-Luc Lemahieu.

After rising sharply in the years after the Taliban successfully stopped production, the harvest last peaked in 2007 and is expected to continue rising.

Mr Lemahieu said that the rise since 2010 was caused principally by what he called a "hot political market" - uncertainty over the process of transition from US control. That uncertainty will continue with the end of foreign combat operations and the presidential election next year.
Posted by: trailing wife || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [307 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "Lotta money in that white powder." - Sonny Corleone
Posted by: Chuck || 11/15/2013 4:18 Comments || Top||

#2  Reactivate the Ranch Hands.
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/15/2013 12:35 Comments || Top||


Southeast Asia
Thai politics at loggerheads
Thailand’s current protests and political conflict appear to have reached a stalemate, with street protests receding after the government was forced earlier this week to back down from a blanket amnesty bill. Protest leaders have attempted to spur the demonstrations by calls for strikes and social disobedience.

Attendance at opposition rallies was sharply diminished Thursday after the Thai Senate annulled a controversial amnesty bill earlier in the week, and despite protest leaders' threats to escalate the rallies.
Posted by: badanov || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [274 views] Top|| File under:


Europe
Paul McCartney asks Putin to free envireauxes
From the I'll Get Right on that Department
Former Beatle Paul McCartney said on Thursday he had written to President Vladimir Putin to enlist his help in securing the release of a group of Greenpeace activists detained in Russia.

Twenty-eight activists and two journalists face up to seven years in jail over a protest against offshore drilling in the Arctic in which some members of the environmental group tried to scale a Russian oil rig.
Posted by: badanov || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [517 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Sir Paul's gonna have to do better than that; ship Vlad one of his old bass guitars and it's a done deal.
Posted by: Raj || 11/15/2013 0:31 Comments || Top||

#2  ...and a Super Bowl ring...
Posted by: Dopey Sinatra || 11/15/2013 14:26 Comments || Top||

#3  "Paul McCartney ask Putin to free envireax approve of piracy and vandalism on the high seas, and ignore the foreigners who perpertrated it"

Fixed that headline for you.
Posted by: Barbara || 11/15/2013 14:49 Comments || Top||

#4  Nyet, Pavil.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 11/15/2013 21:20 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Six LJ terrorists killed in Karachi, bombs defused
[Pak Daily Times] Six hard boyz belonging to the banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi
... a 'more violent' offshoot of Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistain. LeJ's purpose in life is to murder anyone who's not of utmost religious purity, starting with Shiites but including Brelvis, Ahmadis, Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Rosicrucians, and just about anyone else you can think of. They are currently a wholly-owned subsidiary of al-Qaeda ...
were killed during an encounter with the Crime Investigation Department in the port city on Thursday as Muharram 9 passed without incident across the country.

The terrorists, who were planning a major attack in Muharram, were killed near Laki Pahari area of Maripur late on Wednesday. The encounter took place when CID police, on a tip-off about the presence of men belonging to the 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
, conducted a targeted raid. As the police team reached the terrorists' hideout they opened fire. Police fired back, killing six terrorists, while three CID personnel, Yasir, Faizan and Ali Faisal, sustained bullet injures.

The dear departed hard boyz were identified as Gul Hassan, 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...
chapter chief of LeJ's Asif Chohto group, two suspected jacket wallahs, Mohammad Arif alias Salahuddin alias Mairaj alias Javed Chashma, and Naveed Baloch alias Chohta, Syed Khalil Hussain Shah alias Shahji, Maqbool alias Baan and Naveed Ayub. Their bodies were taken to the Civil Hospital and later shifted to Edhi morgue, Sohrab Goth. "They were planning to carry out an attack on Shia mourners," an official claimed. He said they would have first fired and then carried out suicide kabooms at the Hussainian Iranian Imambargah
...since the country's religiously correct™, Shia Moslems in Pakistain can't call their houses of worship 'mosques,' which are reserved for Sunnis. It's not clear if imambargahs are used for explosives storage like mosques are...
in Kharadar. The hard boyz were also planning to attack an Ashura procession.

Meanwhile,
...back at the revival hall, the SWAT team had finally arrived...
the Anti-Terrorism Cell (AEC) officials claimed to have recovered suicide jackets and a car-load of explosives along with a cycle of violence with which the hard boyz were going to attack the Hussainia Iranian Imambargah. The official said that Gul Hassan was also incarcerated
Yez got nuttin' on me, coppers! Nuttin'!
in the past but was released on bail. He was the criminal mastermind of the attack on Justice Maqbool Baqar and was wanted to the police; he was also involved in various other cases of terrorism, including bombings at the Hyderi Masjid and Ali Raza Imambargah as well as attacks on the buses of SUPARCO. "The other hard boyz killed during the encounter were involved in more than 50 cases of sectarian murders, including that of Shia lawyers and a journalist, Syed Shah, in Karachi," the official said.

Meanwhile,
...back at the dirigible, Cynthia backed into the galley, the barbecue fork held in front of her. Jack! she called. Where the hell are you?...
security forces on Thursday foiled terrorism bids in different parts of the country by recovering and defusing bombs. 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.
, Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) defused a 20-kilogramme bomb planted along Ring Road. This was the second bomb defused by BDS in as many days. Separately, police in Kot Addu foiled an attempt of terrorism by recovering and defusing a 10-kilogramme bomb, planted on a Muharram procession route. According to police, the bomb was wrapped in a plastic bag and placed in a trolley.

Municipal employees found the bag while cleaning the area and informed police. A bid to target a Muharram procession in Kurram Agency
...home of an intricately interconnected web of poverty, ignorance, and religious fanaticism, where the laws of cause and effect are assumed to be suspended, conveniently located adjacent to Tora Bora...
was also thwarted after security forces recovered a huge cache of explosives during a raid on the compound of a leader of a banned outfit. Security forces raided the compound of Qari Naeem in Anudanad area, arrested two hard boyz and recovered a huge cache of weapons, including 55 IEDs, two RPGs, 15 landmines, 16 anti-tank mortars, five bombs and anti-aircraft guns. The security forces in Islamabad also foiled a terror bid and arrested two persons, including one suicide bomber, during a raid.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [479 views] Top|| File under: Lashkar e-Jhangvi

#1  In Paki-stan, millions of pillions return to work, rested and refreshed from their holiday! They've put on the feedbag and it's back to work fulfilling their fundamental duties. The rasping sputter of the exhaust! The rush of the breeze and the lure of the open road! Exotic smells of native foods and the bazaar! These crotchety beasts may have a bad reputation, but one can see why these creatures of routine stick to their work with a vengeance!
Posted by: Zenobia Floger6220 || 11/15/2013 12:54 Comments || Top||

#2  :)
Thank you, thank you.
Posted by: Shipman || 11/15/2013 16:31 Comments || Top||

#3  #2 :)

Apologies for the substandard stuff. If I'd remembered the "newsreel" tag... and edited... and included the puns that occurred to me as I read what I posted... Well, my mom laughed.
Posted by: Zenobia Floger6220 || 11/15/2013 22:29 Comments || Top||


China-Japan-Koreas
JPM hired Chinese president's daughter
Nice gig.

The New York Times is reporting JPMorgan Chase secretly employed the daughter of Wen Jiabao, who until recently was China's prime minister and the main overseer of the world's second largest economy.

The Thursday report comes as the U.S. government investigates whether the bank hired the children of powerful Chinese officials to help win lucrative business deals with the country's state-owned companies.
Posted by: badanov || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [313 views] Top|| File under:

#1  to help win lucrative business deals
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/15/2013 12:45 Comments || Top||

#2  I don't get it. I mean, if the family can rise to lead China, they're obviously of extraordinary intelligence and capability and are the sort of people who should be hired. Right?
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 11/15/2013 13:07 Comments || Top||

#3  "Don’t go into corporate America. You know, become teachers. Work for the community. Be social workers. Be a nurse." - Someone in the White House
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 13:44 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Politix
President Obama Threatens To Veto Bipartisan Bill To Fix Cancelled Plans
...file under "Keep The Plate-O'-Crisis" spinning..?
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [1050 views] Top|| File under:

#1  In the main time please all of you son of a conservative bitches please look at these FACTs:

1- Sale of private jets costing $50Mill and more were at record levels YTD
2- Sale of homes costing $10Mill and more are going as briskly as ever
3- One Apartment complex in New York were apartments sold at $2.5Mill and more sold out in less than 30 days
4- One Google exec just bought a $25Mill mansion in south of France and a $14Mill condo in NYC
5- One Silicon Valley VC just built a $125M Super Yacht in Istanbul and sailed it with entourage of 100 to Nice
6- Not one major Military program has been cut
7- We are building F35s at cost of $200Mill each as if we are the richest country/people on earth
8- Not one 4 Star General has been layed off or has had his pay cut by even 10%
9- $10s of Billions of Dollars of our Taxes are still being sent, in various form, to Israel.
10- We just built a new Military base in Romania at cost of $12Bill+ staffing it with 1000s of soldiers. Of course why not! After all Romania, about 10000 Miles from US, is so vital to our security needs. Not. This would be analogous to if Russia had built a military base in Mexico. In fact we have Military bases in 150 different countries, a feet that NO other country on this Earth comes even close to duplicating in numbers and costs. In fact we have a Military budget that is LARGER than the Military budget of ALL other countries on Earth combined, indicating beyond a shadow of doubt that we are either the richest people on earth or being bankrupted by our Military budget.
etc. etc.
Posted by: ranters are idiots || 11/15/2013 1:29 Comments || Top||

#2  86 That

I was ready for 20 questions and you end up half assed.

Fact. You don't know how to build a house.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 11/15/2013 1:50 Comments || Top||

#3  He doesn't know how to build an outhouse...
Posted by: Beavis || 11/15/2013 1:57 Comments || Top||

#4  He and his democratic cohorts own it. Please let them continue digging!
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 2:48 Comments || Top||

#5  We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission.
- Ayn Rand


From the Woodpile.
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 7:02 Comments || Top||

#6  As Jonah Goldberg noted yesterday, suppose for a moment that the O-Care website rollout for the individual mandate had been a smashing success. Does anyone think that Champ and the Democrats would have generously shared credit with the Pubs?

No, me neither.

Besoeker is correct: Champ and the Dems own this.
Posted by: Steve White || 11/15/2013 7:38 Comments || Top||

#7  #1 ignores above all else the military size and costs are driven by politicians everyone elects. They create the 'missions' for which the force is designed for.

The present confusion in the civilian mind and the true military mind respecting the purposes of armies and limits of warfare is attributable to many circumstances. Among them, no doubt, is the character of military history as it has commonly been written. Ordinary citizens are lacking in the raw experience of combat, or deficient in technical knowledge, and inclined to leave the compilation of military records to “experts” in such affairs. Writers on general history have tended to neglect the broader aspects of military issues; confining themselves to accounts of campaigns and battles, handled often in a cursory fashion, they have usually written on the wars of their respective countries in order to glorify their prowess, with little or no reference to the question whether these wars were conducted in the military way of high efficiency or in the militaristic way, which wastes blood and treasure.

Even more often, in recent times, general historians have neglected military affairs and restricted their reflections to what they are pleased to call “the causes and consequences of wars”; or they have even omitted them altogether. This neglect may be ascribed to many sources. The first is, perhaps, a recognition of the brutal fact that the old descriptions of campaigns are actually of so little value civilian and military alike. Another has been the growing emphasis on economic and social fields deemed “normal” and the distaste of economic and social historians for war, which appears so disturbing to the normal course of events. Although Adam Smith included a chapter on the subject of military defense in his Wealth of Nations as a regular part of the subject, modern economists concentrate on capital, wages, interest, rent, and other features of peaceful pursuits, largely forgetting war as a phase of all economy, ancient or modern. When the mention the subject of armies and military defense, these are commonly referred to as institutions and actions which interrupt the regular balance of economic life. And the third source of indifference is the effort of pacifists and peace advocates to exclude wars and military affairs from general histories, with the view to uprooting any military or militaristic tendencies from the public mind, on the curious assumption that by ignoring realties the realties themselves will disappear.

This lack of a general fund of widely disseminated military information is perilous to the maintenance of civilian power in government. The civilian mind, presumably concerned with the maintenance of peace and the shaping of policies by the limits of efficient military defense, can derive no instruction from acrimonious disputes between militarists, limitless in their demands, and pacifists, lost in utopian visions. Where the civilians fail to comprehend and guide military policy, the true military men, distinguished from the militarists, are also imperiled. For these the executioners of civilian will, dedicated to the preparation of defense and war with the utmost regard for efficiency, are dependent upon the former.

Again, and again, the military men have seen themselves hurled into war by ambitions, passions, and blunders of civilian governments, almost wholly uninformed as to the limits of their military potentials and almost recklessly indifferent to the military requirements of the wars they let loose. Aware that they may again be thrown by civilians into an unforeseen conflict, perhaps with a foe they have not envisaged, these realistic military men find themselves unable to do anything save demand all the men, guns, and supplies they can possibly wring from the civilians, in the hope that they may be prepared or half prepared for whatever may befall them. In so doing they inevitably find themselves associated with militaristic military men who demand all they can get merely for the sake of having it without reference to ends.

Vagts, Alfred, History of Militarism, rev. 1959, Free Press, NY, pp 33-34.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 11/15/2013 7:41 Comments || Top||

#8  1- Sale of private jets costing $50Mill and more were at record levels YTD

So what? It's their money.

2- Sale of homes costing $10Mill and more are going as briskly as ever

So what? It's their money.

3- One Apartment complex in New York were apartments sold at $2.5Mill and more sold out in less than 30 days

So what? It's their money.

4- One Google exec just bought a $25Mill mansion in south of France and a $14Mill condo in NYC

So what? It's his money, and he's a Democrat.

5- One Silicon Valley VC just built a $125M Super Yacht in Istanbul and sailed it with entourage of 100 to Nice

So what? It's his money, and he's a Democrat.

6- Not one major Military program has been cut

Wrong.

7- We are building F35s at cost of $200Mill each as if we are the richest country/people on earth

They are $160 million each, and Democrats have joined Republicans to prevent cuts to the F35 program.

8- Not one 4 Star General has been layed off or has had his pay cut by even 10%

Over four dozen generals have been cashiered. General Petreaus was a four star general who now is unemployed.

9- $10s of Billions of Dollars of our Taxes are still being sent, in various form, to Israel.

It is $6 billion and worth every penny. But if you object to giving people in the Middle East money, we just gave money to the Palestinians: that's a TRUE WASTE of our dollars.

10- We just built a new Military base in Romania at cost of $12Bill+ staffing it with 1000s of soldiers. [snip the rest]

You might want to source that. Further, Romania is part of NATO now, so of course we're there. Anytime you want the U.S. to withdraw from NATO, feel free to propose it to your Democratic colleagues.

AoS (moderator)
Posted by: Steve White || 11/15/2013 7:41 Comments || Top||

#9  Civil, well-reasoned discourse! Waytago, Steve!
Posted by: Bobby || 11/15/2013 7:54 Comments || Top||

#10  "In fact we have a Military budget that is LARGER than the Military budget of ALL other countries on Earth combined.."

In fact you have your so far up your ass you can't see daylight. The US % is about 40 % of the total. Even with your head up and locked you can see that 40 is smaller than 60.

I'll bet there are hundreds of thousand of Filipinos that are very happy we can park an aircraft carrier just about anywhere in the world we damn well please WHEN we please. Nobody can do that shit head.

Oh…

Fuck Off
Posted by: Bangkok Billy || 11/15/2013 8:47 Comments || Top||

#11  Gentlemen can easily settle this:

'ranters are idiots' and Bangkok Billy at 15 meters and closing, with entrenching tools. Last man standing buys breakfast on the grounds.
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 9:09 Comments || Top||

#12  I'm glad the moderators left up the troll dog's meme because the responses, particularly Bangkok Billy's, gave me the first chuckle of the morning. Go Ranters!!
Posted by: BrujoTejano || 11/15/2013 9:21 Comments || Top||

#13  #1 In the main time (...?! - UP...) please all of you son of a conservative bitches please look at these FACTs (...just cuz you can type it doesn't make it real...):

...Please note that we are, primarily, "Conservative sons of bitches" - even some of the ladies. Thank you...
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 9:28 Comments || Top||

#14  You'd be amazed how many jobs are generated by building a 10 million dollar yacht in Maine, and how those jobs raise the general level of economic activity there.

The wealthy don't put their money in their mattresses. They spend it or invest it in productive enterprises.
Posted by: KBK || 11/15/2013 9:58 Comments || Top||

#15  Har Jerkface Killa gotten a new nym?
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/15/2013 10:01 Comments || Top||

#16  I think we finally got a supervisor.

Eating bad shrimp and falling in a hole is neither building a latrine or an arguement.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 11/15/2013 10:20 Comments || Top||

#17  Is our friend aware that nearly all $1m+ donations to political parties go to the Democrats? If he dislikes fat cats then he has some house cleaning to do.
Posted by: Iblis || 11/15/2013 10:32 Comments || Top||

#18  I suggest a Duel to settle this argument, who wants to be Scaramanga and who wants to be James Bond ?

Posted by: Sputh Ghibelline1965 || 11/15/2013 11:02 Comments || Top||

#19  Y'all wanna be careful not to confuse the troll with facts.

As for the airplanes, houses, condos and yachts; there are people who are employed making such items so whenever anybody plunks down money to buy them it helps the economy and provides jobs. I know that's confusing but please try to understand. Besides that you have to consider that some of the purchasers are likely to be beneficiaries of lucrative no-bid contracts to design and build failed websites. Of course, it helps to be an old friend and classmate of Moochelle to land such a contract. Either that or they received government loans to the tune of half a billion dollars to produce solar energy and then went bankrupt. I still don't understand how you go bankrupt when you have a half billion dollars in the bank but then, did we ever get a full and detailed accounting of that incident? We do know that contributors to the Champ's election campaign get an inside track when it comes to securing these loans.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 11/15/2013 11:59 Comments || Top||

#20  I love how trolls come up with worthless and inaccurate facts to back up their little fantasy view of the world. Almost makes me feel sorry for them.



Almost.
Posted by: DarthVader || 11/15/2013 12:02 Comments || Top||

#21  Har Jerkface Killa gotten a new nym?

IP is in the Los Angeles area, where our other leftwing troll, Play4Keeps, is.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 12:13 Comments || Top||

#22  “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.” Napoleon

Circular firing squads are interesting to watch. Please pass the popcorn.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/15/2013 13:00 Comments || Top||

#23  As for the airplanes, houses, condos and yachts; there are people who are employed making such items so whenever anybody plunks down money to buy them it helps the economy and provides jobs

It goes beyond that, what a Gulfstream does to an area like Savannah is immeasurable. Restaurants, contractors, schools, grocery stores and on and on and on
Posted by: Beavis || 11/15/2013 13:05 Comments || Top||

#24  "I was for my plan before I was against it"
Posted by: swksvolFF || 11/15/2013 14:00 Comments || Top||

#25  Thanks for that Woodpile link, Besoeker. I just bookmarked it. Ol' Remus is quite a character.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 11/15/2013 14:10 Comments || Top||

#26  It's the Upton bill that has "bipartisan support" that the President is threatening to veto.

No mention of whether the President will veto the proposed Landrieu bill coming out of the Senate, which has some potentially serious legal issues with regards to interfering with the powers of state insurance commissions, while leaving intact the HHS regulations. It also directs insurance companies to violate those same regulations.

The Upton bill skirts the insurance commissions but also effectively nullifies the HHS regulations for a year. It also potentially throws a wrench into the ACA process, which the White House realizes.

Hence the White House's proposed "solution," which is a attempt to weave through the self-laid political minefield.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 14:38 Comments || Top||

#27  In the main time please all of you son of a conservative bitches please look at these FACTs:

I prefer to use the word "сука." After all, it's the one Putin uses every time he thinks about Obama.
Posted by: Secret Master || 11/15/2013 15:03 Comments || Top||

#28  What's really rich ranter -

under Bush, the 1% captured 65 cents of every dollar created, Under Obama the 1% got 93 cents of every dollar created. In the transition from Bush to Obama, inequality got worse, faster.
- Matt Stoller a fellow at the Roosevelt Institute.
Posted by: mossomo || 11/15/2013 19:28 Comments || Top||

#29  Meanwhile, back on the subject...... Let O veto the bipartisan bill and pi$$ off both parties. Now O will again own this pile of $h!t law he and the dems rammed through.

Feeling lucky, punk?
/channeling Dirty Harry
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 11/15/2013 20:15 Comments || Top||

#30  Steve, your a true gentleman. I would have told the troll to fuck off, after I had a talk with his parents about unmonitored computer usage.
Posted by: 49 Pan || 11/15/2013 21:57 Comments || Top||


Home Front: WoT
C.I.A. Collecting Data on International Money Transfers, Officials Say
...I'm conflicted...

HT: Drudge
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [506 views] Top|| File under:

#1  US Treasury FinCEN performs a similar function. The IRS used to do the same thing under their FINCEN organization (which may have migrated to Treasury).
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 2:26 Comments || Top||

#2  Got to get through all that 'chaff' of transfers back home to Mexico and Central America around paydays. (Remember all those 'untraceable' small credit card transfers from Europe to the 2008 Obama campaign. You can't dismiss that model used to support other activity either.)
Posted by: Procopius2k || 11/15/2013 7:58 Comments || Top||

#3  Gathering intelligence on foreign countries is the CIA's job. If information on US citizens is involved, it is a little murkier.
Posted by: Rambler in Virginia || 11/15/2013 10:21 Comments || Top||

#4  Gulf states are funding sunni terrorism whilst Iran funds shiite terrorism.simples.
Posted by: Ulusoth Shereter7931 || 11/15/2013 15:07 Comments || Top||


Government
Second O'Keefe Video Exposes More Obamacare Navigators Telling People To Commit Fraud
More from The Daily Caller here and here. Yes, of course there's video at the links.
Posted by: trailing wife || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [421 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Where is the legislation ( from anybody, either side of the aisle) requiring background checks on these folks? if the Pubs were smart, they would start that just to give Champ another ball to keep in the air.
but then again.....
Posted by: USN, Ret. || 11/15/2013 7:50 Comments || Top||

#2  Where are the indictments related to conspiracy to defraud the United States Government ?
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 9:05 Comments || Top||

#3  It makes sense, what's another lie.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 11/15/2013 9:36 Comments || Top||

#4  Besoeker, if each one did it on his own initiative, it wouldn't be conspiracy, right? Wink wink, nudge nudge.
Posted by: Rambler in Virginia || 11/15/2013 10:27 Comments || Top||

#5  The entire Obamacare program is a fraud. Navigators are just the personification of the Grand Fraud.

Posted by: Sputh Ghibelline1965 || 11/15/2013 11:42 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Stop it, for God's sake -- Shumaila Raja
[Pak Daily Times] In the debate, 'Who is a shaheed (martyr) and who is not', we have gone too far, much to the amusement of our enemy. What the Jamaat-e-Islami
...The Islamic Society, founded in 1941 in Lahore by Maulana Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi, aka The Great Apostosizer. The Jamaat opposed the independence of Bangladesh but has operated an independent branch there since 1975. It maintains close ties with international Mohammedan groups such as the Moslem Brotherhood. the Taliban, and al-Qaeda. The Jamaat's objectives are the establishment of a pure Islamic state, governed by Sharia law. It is distinguished by its xenophobia, and its opposition to Westernization, capitalism, socialism, secularism, and liberalist social mores...
(JI) Ameer said was unfortunate, and it really hurt the sentiments of people, the army and the polity. But most of all unfortunate is the JI's opting to stick to its Ameer's stance, probably to gain political mileage. The JI was not in the mainstream. The blurb only served to retrieve its 'lost glory'.

This tiny issue has itself helped to distract the nation's attention from more pressing issues. The Pakistain intelligence agencies have issued reports indicating a rise in sectarian strife in Punjab during the month of Muharram. Two 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 will assail opponents during the last three days of Muharrum on the dates of 8th, 9th and 10th respectively. Terrorists will carry out targeted attacks on Shia gatherings, majaalis (commemorative gatherings) and mourning processions, as well as assassinating specific and prominent personalities in order to accomplish their ulterior motives.

This news came amidst reports that the US Senate Intelligence Committee has quietly approved a plan to step up both public and internal government oversight of the use of armed drones to kill suspected gunnies overseas, including US citizens. According to Rooters, the committee voted in closed session earlier this week to approve legislative language that would require the US spy agencies to make public statistics on how many people were killed or injured in missile strikes launched from US-operated drones. The committee also approved language intended to bolster scrutiny of spy agency deliberations over decisions about targeting US citizens or residents for lethal drone strikes overseas. The B.O. regime has been under pressure from foreign governments, the UN and human rights
...which are usually open to widely divergent definitions...
groups to be more transparent and rigorous in accounting for the civilian casualties caused by drone strikes. Though the committee did not release full details of its deliberations on the measures, sources familiar with the discussions said that some committee Republicans were opposed to the drone-related clauses in the bill, which would authorise intelligence activities for the current government fiscal year that began on October 1.

With this in mind, some saner elements have stepped forward and started creating an environment of rapprochement, urging the JI to offer an apology and asking the military leadership to ignore it. One of the leading analysts, Ehsan Mahmood Khan, who recently authored a book, Human Security in Pakistain, said: "Syed Munawwar Hasan's statement looks to be an isolated and personal opinion. Consider a while that Liaquat Baloch, Jamaat-e-Islami's Secretary General, visited the native town of Major-General Sanaullah Khan Niazi in Daud Khel, Mianwali, on September 18, 2013. He offered condolences with the martyr's younger brothers, Rehmatullah Khan Niazi, DIG, and Ameenullah Khan, ex-Nazim, and paid rich tribute to the dear departed. The JI's local leadership was also accompanying him. Addressing a conference there he told the media that the Pakistain army's sacrifices in the defence of the country were matchless and unprecedented. 'The whole nation is proud of its brave soldiers and officers.' He said that the external involvement in this tragic act could not be unattended, as it has been traced in many cases in the past. This is the time that the Pakistain army, people, political government and media are on one page, which is good omen indeed. Does it mean that Munawwar Hasan and Liaquat Baloch have different views or their point of view is not that of the Jamaat-e-Islami?"Addressing a presser on the spot, he said that the sacrifices of Pakistain army to curb extremism are matchless, and that the entire nation is proud of its army men.

However,
man does not live by words alone, despite the fact that sometimes he has to eat them...
another analyst, Hussain Naqi, has a different opinion. He said, "Howsoever belated, the ISPR retort to JI Amir Munawwar Hasan is interesting but one is surprised that the ISPR spokesperson was unaware that Munawwar's mentor Maulana Maudoodi, whom the ISPR spokesperson mentioned with admiration, had exactly similar views about the shuhada of Pakistain army's 1948 Kashmire war, and what Maulana Maudoodi had said about the creation of Pakistain is also well known. For almost half a century, the army top brass has been collaborating with the Jamaat-e-Islami and its political philosophy in violation of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah's secular standpoint about Pakistain's polity."

In Shahbaz Thuttal's view, the Indians and CIA must be enjoying the outburst of the JI Ameer, as what they have been trying for the last over 60 years to divide the Pakistain nation in two groups and spread hatred against the army is now being actively done by the JI, who were the great supporters of Zia ul Haq
...the creepy-looking former dictator of Pakistain. Zia was an Islamic nutball who imposed his nutballery on the rest of the country with the enthusiastic assistance of the nation's religious parties, which are populated by other nutballs. He was appointed Chief of Army Staff in 1976 by Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, whom he hanged when he seized power. His time in office was a period of repression, with hundreds of thousands of political rivals, minorities, and journalists executed or tortured, including senior general officers convicted in coup-d'état plots, who would normally be above the law. As part of his alliance with the religious parties, his government helped run the war against the Soviets in Afghanistan, providing safe havens, American equipiment, Saudi money, and Pak handlers to selected mujaheddin. Zia died along with several of his top generals and admirals and the then United States Ambassador to Pakistain Arnold Lewis Raphel when he was assassinated in a suspicious air crash near Bahawalpur in 1988...
and even became ministers under him. The Nawaz government should take a firm and strong stand. Now, otherwise, they will continue to be blackmailed by the JI. It is very strange that the PML-N is the only party that has not given any response so far, except for its Sindh Assembly minority that joined the resolution against the JI Amir's salvo. All other parties have supported the blurb.

In his view, Riaz Jafri said, "I think we should bury the hatchet right here. The JI Ameer said something and the army and the general public gave their own point of view. That should be the end of it instead of insisting upon an 'unconditional apology' and the Ameer sticking to his own guns. Any further digging into the issue is likely to widen the chasm within the nation. Who is a shaheed and who is not, is not for them to decide. As a general belief all soldiers laying down their lives for their country and cause are assumed to be shaheed. Even in the Indian army any soldier dying on the front is called shaheed -- irrespective of his being a Mohammedan or non-Mohammedan. Muhammad Rafi's famous song has become immortal in this context and he is not addressing only the Indian Mohammedans in it: "Watan ki raah me watan ke naujavan shaheed ho/Pukarate hai ye zamin-o-aasama'an shaheed ho/Shaheed teri maut hi tere watan ki zindagi/Tere lahu se jaag uthegi is chaman ki zindagi." However,
man does not live by words alone, despite the fact that sometimes he has to eat them...
he said, Syed Munawwar Hasan should have refrained from giving his opinion on such a sensitive matter and his utterances can only be termed as most untimely, immature and thoughtless to the extent of being reckless on his part.

Professor Alya Alvi has, however, raised very pertinent questions. She says that the former JI Ameer Qazi Hussain Ahmed
...the absolutely humorless, xenophobic former head of the Pak Jamaat-e-Islami. He was also head of the MMA, a coalition of religious parties formed after 2001 that eventually collapsed under the weight of the holy egos involved. Qazi was the patron of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar during the Afghan mujaheddin's war against the Soviets. His sermons are described as fiery, which means they rely heavily on gospel and not at all on logic. Qazi once recommended drinking camel pee for good health, but that was before his kidneys went...
(late) twice survived murder attempts. If he were killed, what would then Munawwar Hasan call him: shaheed or killed? If, God forbid, Munawwar Hasan is killed in a kaboom, what would the JI call him: a martyr or just killed? The TTP forces of Evil killed namazis while offering Juma prayers in the Parade Lane mosque, and many other mosques and Imambargah
...since they're religiously correct™, Shia Moslems in Pakistain can't call their houses of worship 'mosques,' which are reserved for Sunnis. It's not clear if imambargahs are used for explosives storage like mosques are...
s. Were those innocent Mohammedans not shaheed?" In fact, the JI and Maulana Fazlur Rehman
Deobandi holy man, known as Mullah Diesel during the war against the Soviets, his sympathies for the Taliban have never been tempered by honesty ...
's statements have tried to damage the national cause and create confusion among the people, particularly the soldiers of our armed forces who are ever ready to sacrifice their lives as and when the nation calls for it.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [338 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan


Europe
Submitted for tail art as much as the story: Dutch F-16 mistakenly strafes range tower
...SEXIST Dutch...!
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [531 views] Top|| File under:

#1  So the tower is 500 meters from the target along the inbound flight path. What could possibly go wrong? And yeah, nice tail!
Posted by: SteveS || 11/15/2013 1:14 Comments || Top||

#2  Great tail art!
Posted by: Omort Angomoper7226 || 11/15/2013 5:53 Comments || Top||

#3  Move. The. Tower!
Posted by: Secret Asian Man || 11/15/2013 7:25 Comments || Top||

#4  Revenge of the windmills. :-(
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 9:14 Comments || Top||


Spain Court Frees 13 ETA Members under Rights Ruling
[An Nahar] A Spanish court on Thursday freed a further 13 nabbed
You have the right to remain silent...
members of Basque armed separatist group ETA, a court source said, under a rights ruling that has outraged victims' families.
Did the court consider the rights of the dead victims?
Many Spaniards are outraged by the release of ETA prisoners convicted of deadly shootings and bombings in a violent campaign to carve out an independent Basque homeland in northern Spain and southwestern La Belle France.

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg ruled last month that Spain had acted illegally by retroactively cutting short the years of remission that an ETA prisoner had earned from good behavior.

Dozens of ETA members and other violent convicts had their remissions cut short under the same policy, and they are now demanding their release under the European court ruling.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [331 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Early release is generally not a problem if you execute the terrorists.
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/15/2013 9:44 Comments || Top||

#2  Spain Court Frees 13 ETA Members under Rights Ruling
and given asylum at WETA - Public television and public radio for the Greater Washington, D.C. area, headquartered in Arlington, VA

Public TV is now safe in WDC Metro Area. Lets Basque in the limelight.
Posted by: Sputh Ghibelline1965 || 11/15/2013 10:53 Comments || Top||


Africa North
Imam, a former military official, murdered in Benghazi
[Libya Herald] An Imam, also a former senior military official from Benina Air Force base, was murdered today in Benghazi when an bomb exploded beneath his car.

Musta Faraj Al-Fitouri was killed instantly when the device went kaboom!, spokesperson for Benghazi Joint Security Room (BJSR) Abdullah Zaidi told the Libya Herald. The incident happened in Benghazi's Sal Mani district.

Fitouri, who retired in 1988, was an expert in arming military bases with appropriate weapons, Zaidi said. Since retiring, he had become an Imam at a mosque in the Fabri district of Benghazi.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [318 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring

#1  You ever get the impression that Moslems just don't have the basic character for governing any other way than "I keel you !" ?

It may have something to do with the character of Islam itself.
Maybe?
Posted by: Spereting Tingle4064 || 11/15/2013 7:27 Comments || Top||

#2  No. In this case it's part of an overall objective by Ansar al Sharia to carve out an independent state in the vacuum created by a "Responsibility to Protect" doctrine that was neither responsible nor protective.

Ansar al Sharia is doing what what the Sandanistas, ZANU-PF, NPA, Shining Path, the Kurds, et cetera, have been doing for decades.

But that's considering history. Posting rote drivel is much easier.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 10:36 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Three injured in Awaran explosion
[Pak Daily Times] At least three people were maimed in an kaboom in earthquake-hit Awaran district of Balochistan
...the Pak province bordering Kandahar and Uruzgun provinces in Afghanistan and Sistan Baluchistan in Iran. Its native Baloch propulation is being displaced by Pashtuns and Punjabis and they aren't happy about it...
on Thursday. According to sources, unidentified people had placed an bomb in Shah Ghazai area of Awaran, which went off and maimed three persons. The injured were shifted to hospital where condition of one of them was said to be serious. Awaran was badly hit by an earthquake on September 24. More than 500 people died and thousands were rendered homeless due to the catastrophe.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [276 views] Top|| File under:


Lunatics taking over the asylum -- Hina Hafeezullah Ishaq
[Pak Daily Times] Munawwar Hasan, the Ameer of Jamaat-e-Islami
...The Islamic Society, founded in 1941 in Lahore by Maulana Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi, aka The Great Apostosizer. The Jamaat opposed the independence of Bangladesh but has operated an independent branch there since 1975. It maintains close ties with international Mohammedan groups such as the Moslem Brotherhood. the Taliban, and al-Qaeda. The Jamaat's objectives are the establishment of a pure Islamic state, governed by Sharia law. It is distinguished by its xenophobia, and its opposition to Westernization, capitalism, socialism, secularism, and liberalist social mores...
(JI) has made the headlines again. I suspect that he was feeling a bit left out with all attention being showered on another Maulana of a different group, Jamaat-e-Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl. In order to outshine Maulana 'Diesel' who, drawing on his vast reservoir of knowledge, recently stated for the ignorant and imbecile Pak nation that "even a dog killed by the US is a martyr", the JI Maulana has declared that Hakeemullah Mehsud, the chief of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain (TTP), a recent target of a US drone, is a 'shaheed' (martyr). Had the Ameer's 'ilm' (knowledge) stopped here, many of us would have chosen to ignore this, but it was not to be. In order to go one up on the JUI (F), he elaborated that the soldiers who had laid down their lives defending our country, were not shaheed. To be precise, it was in response to the question: "Whether we should consider the Pak soldiers who die while fighting the TTP shaheed or not?" posed by Saleem Safi in his TV programme. Maulana Hasan stated that since Americans who die fighting in this area are not shaheed, rather they are perceived as having died a "zillat ke maut" (ignominious death), how can anyone who supports the US, logistically and otherwise, and fights alongside them for fulfilling their goals, be a shaheed? If an American cannot be a shaheed, then neither can the other!

I am unable to tame my sense of disgust. I cannot but help recall that this is the same maulana who a while back said that rape victims should keep their mouths shut unless they can provide four witnesses in their support. Is not shaheed a person who dies fighting for a just cause? Are not those slaughtering people, blowing up innocent women, children and men, killing and maiming mercilessly, pure evil?

The Pakistain army through a statement by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) has condemned Munawwar Hasan's statement, terming it 'misguided and self-serving' and an insult to the deaders and their families. The army has asked for an unconditional apology. There has been widespread protest against Hasan's statement as well as a visit by Prime Minister (PM) 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...
to GHQ to pay tribute to the deaders. The PM House issued a statement stating: "Those who have fought for Pakistain, the shaheed (deaders) and ghazis (living), have sacrificed their today for ensuring a better tomorrow for our future generations. All of them are our benefactors."
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [317 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan


Africa North
Sahel States Seek to Boost Security against Jihadists
[An Nahar] Ministers from countries across the Sahel and Maghreb agreed Thursday to create a border security training center in a bid to confront Islamist-linked violence plaguing the huge desert region.

Delegates hailed the proposal in the "Rabat Declaration" adopted by 19 countries at a conference in Morocco's capital as an important step towards curbing jihadist unrest in the Sahara, notably in Mali and Libya.

The training center, which Morocco's Foreign Minster Salaheddine Mezouar said could be in Rabat, would be complemented by closer intelligence cooperation and new technology at borders.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [243 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in North Africa


Africa Subsaharan
Farrow rattling the tip cup, fears genocide in Africa
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow warns the Central African Republic is on the verge of genocide because of growing ethnic and religious tensions between Muslims and Christians. The actress and human rights activist is calling for urgent international intervention to protect the civilian population and stave off a potential blood bath.

Farrow calls the Central African Republic a failed state. She said the government is absolutely useless and unable to stem the violence, which is out-of-control.
Posted by: badanov || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [300 views] Top|| File under:

#1  On the verge of genocide? Seems like there has been genocide in Africa since I knew the meaning of the word. OK, if not genocide, at least semi-organized groups of people killing large quantities of their neighbors.
Posted by: SteveS || 11/15/2013 1:21 Comments || Top||

#2  Might be nice if she rattled the tin cup to protect the Christians in CAR. Might be nice if that cup were passed around at every Church on Sunday. Yet the silence from the pulpit about this issue has been deafening.
Posted by: remoteman || 11/15/2013 14:16 Comments || Top||


Afghanistan
Insurgets in Herat About-Face on Peace, Rejoin Fight After Release
[Tolo News] A number of Talibs who either joined the Afghan government's reconciliation program or were freed after being locked away
Drop the rosco, Muggsy, or you're one with the ages!
have reportedly returned to the battlefield in western Herat
...a venerable old Persian-speaking city in western Afghanistan, populated mostly by Tadjiks, which is why it's not as blood-soaked as areas controlled by Pashtuns...
province to wage war against Afghan and coalition forces.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [265 views] Top|| File under: Taliban


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Damascus Bombs, Mortar Fire Kill Three
[An Nahar] Twin bombings and mortar fire killed three people and maimed 22 near the Syrian capital's famed Ummayad mosque on Thursday, state news agency SANA reported.

"Three people were killed and 22 maimed in terrorist attacks with mortar rounds and the kaboom of two bombs," SANA said, citing police officials.

The attacks took place on Mardam Bek Street and in the Kalassa district, near the outskirts of the historic mosque and the bustling Hamidiyeh market.

Rebels in neighborhoods on the outskirts of Damascus have regularly fired rockets and mortar rounds into the center of the city.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [344 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria


Experts Say Disunity Could Scupper Syria Kurdish Region
[An Nahar] The announcement of a new transitional authority in Syrian Kurdistan marks a key point in the ethnic group's moves towards self-rule, but experts say disunity and war could still scupper their hopes.

Tuesday's declaration of a temporary autonomous administration in Kurdish-dominated parts of northern Syria, a plan initially mooted in July, came after Kurdish forces made territorial gains against jihadists.

But it was marred by several major Kurdish groups failing to sign on to the announcement.

That lack of consensus, coupled with the raging Syrian civil war that has killed more than 120,000 people since 2011, could undermine Syrian Kurdish efforts to gain an unprecedented level of autonomy and emulate the successes of their Iraqi Kurdish neighbors.

"If it succeeds, it will be a very important turning point for the Kurds in Syria, from a state which rejected giving them even citizenship to having a self-ruling area inside Syria," said Asos Hardi, an Iraqi Kurdish journalist and analyst in Sulaimaniyah, the second largest city in the northern autonomous region.

"But I am cautious about the reaction from different sides -- I am cautious that a fight may happen, and Kurdish citizens may pay the cost of this."

Hardi pointed in particular to the reactions of other Kurdish groups and Arab-dominated parties opposed to the rule of embattled Syrian Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Leveler of Latakia...
, both of which criticized the decision.

Currently, the transitional authority is formed by the powerful Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) and several other smaller groupings, but not the Kurdish National Council which includes a broad spectrum of parties.

KNC members called the declaration "rushed" and "one-sided", and expressed concern
...meaning the brow was mildly wrinkled, the eyebrows drawn slightly together, and a thoughtful expression assumed, not that anything was actually done or indeed that any thought was actually expended...
that the move will become a long-term obstacle towards ending the Syrian war.

Arab groups have said the decision threatens the country's long-term unity.

"The formation of any local administration in the Kurdish areas in West Kurdistan is a must," said Bahjat Bashir, a member of the opposition Syrian National Council, referring to Syria's Kurdish areas by the oft-used West Kurdistan name.

"But it has to meet the conditions of success, and the first of those is the participation of all of the active political powers.

"Apparently the brothers in West Kurdistan rushed in announcing this government," Bashir said.

"The management of the region cannot be done by a single party without the agreement or coordination of the Syrian opposition."
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [278 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria


International-UN-NGOs
UN interpreter accidentally speaks truth
Thursday a United Nations interpreter, unaware that her microphone was on, uttered words of truth in reaction to the General Assembly's adoption of nine politically-motivated resolutions condemning Israel, and zero resolutions on the rest of the world.

Under the mistaken impression that she was speaking only to a colleague, the interpreter uttered the following words into the headphones of every UN delegate, and before a live webcast audience worldwide:

"Isn’t it a little weird? There are nine or ten resolutions against Israel. And I know there’s a problem with the Palestinians. But there's other bad shit going on and they’re spending so much time on this."

Laughter erupted among the delegates. "The interpreter apologizes," said the unfortunate truth-teller, moments later. I sincerely hope she won't get fired.
Posted by: badanov || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [376 views] Top|| File under:


Government
Churchill Returns To The Capitol
Posted by: Grunter || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [524 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Nothing against Churchill, but I would prefer they spend their precious time on relevant issues as opposed to statuary and symbolic gestures. Perhaps I am too critical.
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 3:30 Comments || Top||

#2  I think it sort-of is a practical matter to try to keep them from erasing our history. Doing so is how they got so much power to begin with.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 11/15/2013 13:08 Comments || Top||

#3  Perhaps I am too critical

Perhaps.

Then again, acts of subtle insurgency aren't often appreciated.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 15:03 Comments || Top||

#4  Was there a red line around where the bust was to be placed?
Posted by: swksvolFF || 11/15/2013 16:40 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Suspected terrorists nabbed
[Pak Daily Times] Law enforcement agencies have apprehended more than half a dozen suspects for their alleged involvement in carrying out attacks outside imambargahs in the city. As per details, last night three consecutive blasts took place in two different imambargahs. Two in North Nazimabad and one in North 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...
locality that maimed around 14 people. According to bomb disposal squad's experts, the first blast was carried out with the help of a remote control, second went kaboom! with a timer device and the third one was a hand grenade. However,
we can't all be heroes. Somebody has to sit on the curb and applaud when they go by...
law enforcers are still unaware whether a single group of bully boyz was behind the incident or more than two. Meanwhile,
...back at the revival hall, Buford bit the snake and Eloise began speaking in tongues...
raids were carried out in the areas where the kabooms took place, and placed in durance vile
Maw! They're comin' to get me, Maw!
around 10 suspects allegedly involved in the attacks. Additional IG Karachi Shahid Hayat also claimed that a few suspects have also been rounded up and further investigations were underway.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [370 views] Top|| File under: Lashkar e-Jhangvi

#1  For the curious:

An imambargah is a congregation hall for Shia commemoration ceremonies, especially those associated with the Remembrance of Muharram. The name comes from Husayn Ibn Ali, the grandson of Muhammad and an Imam of the Shia. Hussain was killed by Yazid I in Karbala, Iraq, over 1,300 years ago. Shias still mourn the death of Hussain every year on the day of Ashura in imambaraghs all over the world.

A Hussainiya is different from a mosque in that it is intended mainly for gatherings for Muharram in the mourning of Hussain ibn Ali, and may not necessarily hold juma'at, or Friday Prayer.


In other words Sunnis are killing Shia again
Posted by: Frozen Al || 11/15/2013 10:55 Comments || Top||


Bangladesh
BNP calls hartal in Pabna for Saturday
[Bangla Daily Star] BNP has called a daylong hartal
... a peculiarly Bangla combination of a general strike and a riot, used by both major political groups in lieu of actual governance ...
(shutdown) in Pabna for Saturday demanding immediate release of Shamsur Rahman Shimul Biswas, personal assistant to party Chairperson Khaleda Zia
Three-term PM of Bangla, widow of deceased dictator Ziaur Rahman, head of the Bangla Nationalist Party, an apparent magnet for corruption ...
.

Habibur Rahman Tota, BNP secretary of Pabna unit, announced the hartal in the afternoon after a Dhaka court placed Shimul and four others BNP leaders on eight-day remand in two cases after rejecting their bail petitions.

The five BNP leaders -- MK Anwar, Moudud Ahmed, Rafiqul Islam Miah, Abdul Awal Mintoo and Shimul -- were sued in the cases filed for "attempted murder of cops" and "creating violence" in the capital.

Shimul Biswas, who is from Pabna, was picked up by police on early hours of November 9 along with Mintoo.

District unit of BNP brought a procession in Pabna town today in support of their hartal.

Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [240 views] Top|| File under:


Government
HHS letter to State Insurance Commissioners
A section of the HHS issued a letter telling State Ins commissions they could allow more grandfathering of policies (see link).

Of course the regulations promulgated by the HHS say otherwise.

The State insurance commissions are now in a position of either complying with policy or regulations. If they choose the former, the insurance companies would have to worry about their legal liability if they issue a policy that does not comply with the Code of Federal regulations.

Of course, the Obama team will try to now say the ball is in someone else's court. If by court they mean law court, they may be right.
Posted by: lord garth || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [1114 views] Top|| File under:

#1  In my email FL BCBS


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Earlier today, we advised that President Obama announced that insurers can extend current plans into 2014.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have now released additional clarification on this announcement, advising that small groups are also included in the extension into 2014.

We have just released small group renewal letters that do not include this recent information, so please be aware that you may be getting questions from your small groups who receive their renewal letters.

We will be evaluating the impacts to the small group segment and will keep you informed.


The following message from earlier today remains relevant:

We can tell members with plans scheduled to close on January 1, 2014 that we will continue their policy into 2014. Florida Blue will send information to affected members in the next few days explaining in detail the changes and how it affects them.

We can tell members with plans scheduled to close on July 1 or August 1, 2014 that we’re still evaluating how this impacts them and are waiting for detailed information from the federal and state government. We will also let these members know as soon as possible how this affects them.

Florida Blue will continue to work closely with our policyholders to help them find plans that meet the new requirements under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). By allowing our members to remain in their current plans through 2014, they will have additional time to ascertain if they qualify for a subsidy and to find new plans for 2015 that meet the ACA requirements.

We will work as quickly as possible to make the needed changes. The company will continue to reach out to members to offer guidance related to their health care needs.
Posted by: Beavis || 11/15/2013 1:35 Comments || Top||

#2  Once again, Champ's edicts trump the enforcement of written law.
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 3:04 Comments || Top||

#3  Investor's Business Daily article, same subject.
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 3:14 Comments || Top||

#4  Good thing this law was passed so we could find out what was in it.

Washington state insurance commish rejects the additional time; wonder how long before he gets a 'visit' from 'da boyz' to convince him to change his mind....
Posted by: USN, Ret. || 11/15/2013 7:46 Comments || Top||

#5  Seems like a pretty clever political manuever here - insurance companies are now 'free' to continue old 'substandard' policies, but of course the insurance companies won't be willing to do that because it would violate different laws and policies, and open them up to lawsuits. So now the cancellations can be fully 'blamed' on the insurance companies rather than Zero-care.
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/15/2013 9:58 Comments || Top||

#6  Couple of points:

1) If you were an insurance company would you take Barak Obama, a guy lies to your face and then denies it in the face of video evidence, at his word not to prosecute?

2) That same Barack Obama might think he has the authority to set aside laws - but the Supreme Court in a future ruling might disagree. And besides while Bumbles might think he can ignore the law of the land - insurnace companies simply cannot.

3)
Posted by: CrazyFool || 11/15/2013 10:26 Comments || Top||

#7  Aikido in 20 seconds: as a former insurance comissioners Sebelius should know better, and her history of circumventing law and procedure (attempting to raid protected accounts when she failed to approve the budget in her final year as governor of Kansas).

(Pacific Rim trailor voice)

"Sebelius...Let's look behind the curtain. As a former Insurance Comissioner she should know the laws and regulations required. As a Governor she should know legal procedures. In her final year in Kansas she ran an illegal business out of her governor's mansion and attempted to raid retirement accounts and volunteer fire fighter pensions when she neglected the Kansas budget for the trappings of Oz. Ask yourself: is she fit for your health decisions?"
Posted by: swksvolFF || 11/15/2013 10:43 Comments || Top||

#8  America is going down the drain because of Obamacare!













Posted by: Sputh Ghibelline1965 || 11/15/2013 11:13 Comments || Top||

#9  they could allow more grandfathering of policies

This is a legalistic and panicky pre-emption of Senator Landrieu's and Rep. Upton's proposed bills.

Senator Landrieu's bill would impel compel state regulators to allow grandfathering and reinstatement of policies for a year. Such allowances would be illegal. Rep Upton's permits insurance companies to continue selling 'noncompliant policies' for a year, but doesn't compel state insurance regulators to allow it.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 12:06 Comments || Top||

#10  I sense that some of the Democrat Congresscritters are running scared--2014 elections are around the corner.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/15/2013 12:54 Comments || Top||

#11  What TARP did for the banking industry, this 'OOPS' will do for the insurance industry. Look for TAX subsidized reinsurers just like the breakout mortgage lender boom.
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/15/2013 13:10 Comments || Top||

#12  a lot of legal discussion today on this

it seems as if, for policies already cancelled, any reinstatement would almost certainly illegal and someone who got a policy and was ticked off that it didn't cover something would have a good chance of prevailing in court

at the other end, for policies that have not been cancelled and are in states where policies that comply with state insurance laws are protected from lawsuits (I don't know how many there are like that) and where the insurance commission makes an affirmation that continuing a policy is legal under state law, the insurance company is probably safe from lawsuits of the type noted in the earlier paragraph. As, however, implied by others, a company that does issue policies that do not comply with the ACA could be sued by the feds on other grounds which the feds would claim are not related to the ACA but actually would be.
Posted by: lord garth || 11/15/2013 15:03 Comments || Top||

#13  Trying to shift the blame to the insurance companies who really are in no position to change directions 180 degrees. It might work for awhile, then the disaster will intensify.
Posted by: Shipman || 11/15/2013 16:43 Comments || Top||

#14  If you had an condition under your insurance (say Diabetes) and your insurance in cancelled due to ObumbleCare and Obama waves his little -er- finger and your insurnace is back... can they (the insurance company) refuse to cover you citing a 'pre-existing condition'?

So many ramifications....
Posted by: CrazyFool || 11/15/2013 17:16 Comments || Top||

#15  Considering the insurance companies a) agreed to this monstrosity (why turn down a federally-mandated customer base to buy your products?), and b) had no problem with cancelling customer's polices to "comply with Federal regulations", I've not much sympathy.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 17:17 Comments || Top||


Americans’ personal data shared with CIA, IRS, others in security probe
U.S. agencies collected and shared the personal information of thousands of Americans in an attempt to root out untrustworthy federal workers that ended up scrutinizing people who had no direct ties to the U.S. government and simply had purchased certain books.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [298 views] Top|| File under:


Africa Horn
AU sez new offensive could end Al Shaboobies
The United Nations approval of the troop surge in Somalia will help the African Union’s goal of defeating hard line Islamic group al-Shabab in East Africa, according to Erastus Mwencha, the AU’s deputy chairman.

He said the strengthening of African Union troops (AMISOM) and support for the Somalia national army will make it possible to intensify the military campaign against the militants and expand the authority of the Somalia government. It will also facilitate the political process, which will culminate in the adoption of a federal constitution and the holding of elections
Posted by: badanov || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [247 views] Top|| File under:


Africa Subsaharan
UIN Troops to execute offensive operations
Dunno what to make of this

The United Nations Intervention Brigade (MONUSCO) in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) was given an expanded mandate that went beyond peacekeeping - allowing offensive operations to support the Congolese Army against M23 rebels. It was a pivotal move in defeating M23, and what it could mean for continuing operations against other rebel groups in the region, and for other peacekeeping operations in Africa.

After years of disappointing performances by the UN mission in Congo, MONUSCO, against a variety of rebel groups, the Congolese were not sure what to expect of the 3,000 strong UN intervention brigade from Tanzania, South Africa and Malawi that went on the offensive against the M23 rebels in August.
Posted by: badanov || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [337 views] Top|| File under:

#1  3,000 strong UN intervention brigade from Tanzania, South Africa and Malawi

There's your answer. An expanded mandate for offensive ops was the price-tag placed by the Africans for taking over a failed and ineffective MONUSCO; the UN is in no position to say "no."
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 10:41 Comments || Top||


Africa North
Civilians to march on Gharghour on Friday if Brigades don't pull out
[Libya Herald] Further to yesterday's report by Libya Herald of civilian plans to march on gangs based within 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...
in order to force them out, more details have since come to light.

As the fallout from last weekend's Suk Juma and Misrata thuwar (ex-fighters) festivities in central Tripoli continues, plans by civilians to peacefully evict the armed brigades based in the Ghargour district of Tripoli have been revealed after a series of meetings over five days attended by Tripoli Local Council (TLC) officials, civil society members and revolutionary commanders.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [298 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Egypt not replacing US with Russia as top ally
Depicting the meeting as an “activation” of existing ties, Fahmy said Egypt hopes for cooperation “in multiple fields” because of “Russia’s significance in the international arena.”

Egypt’s foreign minister sought to downplay speculation of a major foreign policy shift, saying during a rare top-level Russian visit on Thursday that Cairo wants to boost ties with Moscow and not replace the United States as its key ally.

The remarks by Nabil Fahmy came after talks with his visiting counterpart Sergei Lavrov, who is leading the Russian delegation to Cairo. It’s Moscow’s highest-level visit to Egypt in years and includes Russia’s defense minister, Sergei Shoigu, whose presence has set off rumors of an arms deal in the making.

Fahmy said he, Lavrov, Shigu and Egyptian Defense Minister Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi — who led the popularly-backed coup in July that ousted Egypt’s Islamist President Mohammed Mursi — would jointly meet later Thursday.

Depicting the meeting as an “activation” of existing ties, Fahmy said Egypt hopes for cooperation “in multiple fields” because of “Russia’s significance in the international arena.”

“We seek to energize a relation that is already in existence,” Fahmy told reporters.

When asked whether Russia would replace the US as his country’s chief ally, Fahmy said Egypt was not looking for a “substitute for anyone” and that Russia was too significant for such a role.

“Russia has had a relationship with the Egyptian people for dozens of years,” Lavrov said, speaking through an interpreter. He described Thursday’s meeting as “historic.”

The Russian visit comes as Egypt’s relationship with the United States — Cairo’s main foreign backer and benefactor since the 1970s — has become increasingly strained in the wake of the military’s ouster of Mursi, Egypt’s first freely elected president.

Lavrov also said Russia’s supports a return of stability to Egypt — a reference to the turmoil roiling the country since the 2011 uprising that ousted staunch US ally Hosni Mubarak.

“Russia would like to see a stable Egypt with a prosperous economy and an efficient political system,” he said, offering support for a transition-to-democracy plan by Egypt’s military-backed rulers, including an upcoming referendum on new constitutional amendments.
Posted by: Steve White || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [442 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "Friends" like the POTUS are not really up to searching for Egypt's best interest. At least not for now. So diversification and self preservation is the rule.

That is not an ender, it is a cautious decision.

Don't blame Egypt and remember our deep regards for it.
Posted by: newc || 11/15/2013 1:06 Comments || Top||

#2  ...USA and Russia - co-BFF's...sure...
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 14:20 Comments || Top||

#3  Egypt came out today and said they want to elevate relations with Russia to Soviet levels.
Posted by: mossomo || 11/15/2013 18:47 Comments || Top||


Naming perpetrators will not help -Zeidan
[Libya Herald] At Sunday's presser, Prime Minister Ali Zeidan refused to name those accused of committing crimes in eastern Libya.

Challenged by the media to name the perpetrators of criminal and terror activity in the eastern cities of Benghazi and Derna in order to put the general public's mind at rest, the Prime Minister refused.

It was put to the PM that since the government had revealed that it either knew who was behind these criminal activities or that it had indeed locked away
... anything you say can and will be used against you, whether you say it or not...
some of them, would it not put the public's mind at rest if their identity were to be revealed.

It will be noted that there has been a public clamor for the government to identify those responsible for the violence in the east, and particularly in Benghazi, not least to reduce the amount of wild speculation and conspiracy theories as to who exactly is behind the violence.

The state's inability or unwillingness to reveal who is responsible for the wave of liquidations and bombings in the city of Benghazi has led to some wild speculation that some organs of the state may be implicated. The fact that the state has not presented any conclusive facts as to who is responsible has not helped in limiting or reducing any of this speculation.

Zeidan, however, disagreed with the premise of the question, that it may ease the general public's mind, saying that he did not think that revealing identities "would help the situation".

However,
a hangover is the wrath of grapes...
he said that "when and if" he needed to name people, he "would".
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [222 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Great White North
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford apologises for oral-sex remarks
[BBC.CO.UK] Troubled Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has apologised for obscene comments he made on live TV while denying he made vulgar overtures to a female staff member.

The Canadian politician used what he called "unforgivable language" about oral sex, in remarks to news hounds.

He also threatened to take legal action against former employees who made claims about his drinking and drug use.

It is the latest scandal to engulf 44-year-old Mr Ford, who last week admitted smoking crack cocaine.

Police documents released on Wednesday quoted Ford associates as saying that the mayor had driven drunk, used racially abusive language, threatened staff, consorted with a woman suspected of being a hooker and made a sexual proposition to a female staff member.

'Particularly disappointing'
On Thursday morning, he told news hounds the allegations were "outright lies", although he conceded he might have driven after taking alcohol.

However,
some people cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go...
news hounds were left gasping by his lewd outburst as he denied having once told a former female employee that he wanted to have oral sex.

The father of two young children said that he was "happily married" and crudely commented that he enjoyed enough oral sex at home.

Later on Thursday, Mr Ford was flanked by his wife, Renata, as he expressed regret for the "graphic" language, the latest in a string of apologies.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [532 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Classy fellow that Rob Ford.
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 3:15 Comments || Top||

#2  Mrs. Ford looked so proud in the pic.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 9:30 Comments || Top||

#3  It was Robert Ford, the dirty little coward
And I wonder how he feels
For he slept in Jesse's bed and he ate o' Jesse's bread
But he laid Jesse James in his grave
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/15/2013 9:49 Comments || Top||

#4  Maybe the Dems want to bring him south and run him for Governor or Mayor or something...
Posted by: Bill Clinton || 11/15/2013 11:12 Comments || Top||

#5  love the photo!
Posted by: 3dc || 11/15/2013 11:21 Comments || Top||

#6  Seeing him on TV, I need to wonder how somebody so obese can live through a crack high without blowing an artery.
Posted by: 3dc || 11/15/2013 11:23 Comments || Top||

#7  Toronto city council trying to strip powers from Rob Ford
Embattled mayor refuses to resign
Posted by: Sputh Ghibelline1965 || 11/15/2013 11:36 Comments || Top||

#8 
Posted by: Beavis || 11/15/2013 11:42 Comments || Top||

#9  Love it Beavis !
Posted by: Sputh Ghibelline1965 || 11/15/2013 11:51 Comments || Top||

#10  ... I suspect he shall soon be going on a diet...
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 12:48 Comments || Top||


Africa North
Egypt's ousted president in solitary
[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] Authorities moved Egypt's ousted president from a hospital room to solitary confinement in a massive prison complex Thursday, a security official said, as his son claimed officials denied a family visitation request after lawyers delivered a message from the leader.

The transfer of Mohammed Mursi came 10 days after he was placed temporarily in a hospital room at Borg al-Arab prison, near the Mediterranean city of Alexandria.

Authorities hospitalized Mursi, 62, after he complained of high blood pressure and high blood sugar following his first court appearance on Nov. 4. The toppled president faces charges of inciting violence and murder in connection to the killing of protesters outside of the presidential palace in December.

The official said moving Mursi was expected and that the tossed president won't receive any special treatment in solitary confinement. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to journalists.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [260 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Libya Expels 915 Gadhafi Loyalists from New Army
[An Nahar] Libya has expelled more than 900 soldiers from its fledgling army for having fought for now slain dictator Muammar Qadaffy
...The late megalomaniac dictator of Libya, admired everywhere for his garish costumes, funny hats, harem of cutie bodyguards, and incoherent ravings. As far as is known, he is the only person who's ever declared jihad on Switzerland...
during the 2011 uprising, a military front man said Thursday.

A total of 915 personnel of all ranks have been stripped of their uniform by the Commission for the Integrity and Reform of the Armed Forces, general staff front man Ali al-Sheikhi said.

He said all of those drummed out were veterans who had been maimed in action and whose injuries had been recognized by Qadaffy's defense ministry.

The presence of Qadaffy loyalists in the ranks of the new army has been cited as a pretext for not joining by the myriad of former rebel militias that hold sway over large swathes of the country.

The central government's inability to control the militias was thrown into stark relief last month by the brief abduction of Prime Minister Ali Zeidan by a militia commander who later boasted of the exploit.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [275 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Top Iraqi militia commander killed in Syria
[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] A top Iraqi militia commander fighting in Syria alongside Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad's
Light of the Alawites...
forces has been killed and his body arrived in Iraq's Negef governorate on Thursday, Al Arabiya television reported.

The Syrian Revolution General Commission (SRGC) said Abbas Hussein Ridha, a field commander of Abou Fadl el-Abbas brigade, was killed in a heavy battle with rebel forces outside Damascus.

The SRGC added that several Iranian soldiers and 20 Syrian regime fighters were captured in the fighting.

Abou Fadhl el-Abbas brigade is one of several foreign militias fighting alongside Assad's forms in Syria and is believed to have been involved in the Syrian civil war since 2012.

The Lebanese Hezbollah group has also been actively involved in Syria. Its chief Hassan Nasrallah said on Thursday that he would keep his forces in the country "as long as they are needed" by President Assad.

"As long as the reasons (to fight in Syria) remain, our presence there will remain," Rooters quoted Nasrallah as saying in a speech to tens of thousands of Lebanese Shiites marking the religious ceremony of Ashura in southern Beirut.

The Syrian network of Human rights reported 44 persons were killed throughout Syria on Thursday. These include five children, three women, three deaths after torture, and six from the Free Syrian Army (FSA).
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [320 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

#1  Do we mourn or celebrate the passing of Abbas Hussein Ridha - I'm losing track.
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/15/2013 9:00 Comments || Top||


Africa North
Nearly 1,000 Killed in Cairo since Aug 14 Crackdown
[An Nahar] Clashes in Cairo and its suburbs have killed at least 989 people since security forces launched an August 14 crackdown on supporters of ousted Egyptian 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...
, a forensic official told Agence La Belle France Presse Thursday.
Fixing the mismatch between population and jobs the fastest way...
On August 14 itself, 627 people were killed when security forces stormed Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya square to disperse a sit-in by Morsi's backers, said Hisham Abdul Hamid, front man for Egypt's forensic authorities.

The protesters had been calling for Morsi's return after he was tossed and imprisoned by the army on July 3.

Dozens more were also killed on August 14 in the capital's Nahda Square when police and troops dispersed a similar sit-in.

Abdul Hamid said the corpse count was based on forensic details collected by several morgues in and around Cairo. It does not include security forces' casualties.

Egypt's military-installed authorities are engaged in a campaign against Islamist supporters of Morsi, which has also seen more than 2,000 people tossed in the calaboose
Book 'im, Mahmoud!
since August 14.

Morsi himself has been put on trial for charges related to deaths of protesters during his presidency.

Military chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi overthrew Morsi, the country's first democratically elected president, after millions of Egyptians erupted into the streets in July calling for the Islamist's resignation.

Protesters calling for his removal had accused Morsi of working for the sole benefit of his Moslem Brüderbund, ruining an already dilapidated economy and monopolizing power after the 2011 uprising that toppled long-time ruler Hosni Mubarak
...The former President-for-Life of Egypt, dumped by popular demand in early 2011...
.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [261 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Science & Technology
This Drone Can Fly, Swim, Drive, and Hop Its Way Through a Mission
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [341 views] Top|| File under:


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Nasrallah Says Hizbullah in Syria to Defend Lebanon
[An Nahar] Hizbullah leader His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah
The satrap of the Medes and the Persians in Leb...
made on Thursday a public appearance for the second day in a row, describing the conditions set by the March 14 alliance as "crippling" and saying his party was fighting in Syria in defense of Leb.

The conditions imposed by the March 14 alliance for the formation of the new government are "crippling," Nasrallah said.

Hizbullah fighters are in the neighboring country "to defend Leb, Paleostine and Syria," he said at a massive Ashura ceremony held in the Rweiss neighborhood of Beirut's southern suburbs.

His public appearance came a day after he made a similar speech, urging followers to participate in the Ashura despite "security threats. Nasrallah normally appears via video link for fear of liquidation by Israel.

Thursday's ceremony came amid tight security, including a ban on vehicles in the area, following huge bombings last summer that killed and maimed hundreds of people.

Describing Syria as the protector of the resistance, Nasrallah said: "As long as the reasons stand, our presence in Syria remains."

"Those talking about Hizbullah's pullout from Syria as a condition for the formation of a cabinet are imposing a crippling condition," said Nasrallah, standing on the podium and surrounded by bodyguards.

"When there are strategic dangers that are threatening the people and the governments of the region ... there couldn't be a condition for partnership in the cabinet," he said.

"We won't negotiate on the existence of Syria (in exchange for) a handful of ministries."

Nasrallah urged March 14 to be more pragmatic and put its conditions aside.

"We don't need your cover for our presence in Syria neither today nor in the future," he said, a day after al-Mustaqbal
... the Future Movement, political party led by Saad Hariri...
movement leader ex-PM Saad Hariri
Second son of Rafik Hariri, the Leb PM who was assassinated in 2005. He has was prime minister in his own right from 2009 through early 2011. He was born in Riyadh to an Iraqi mother and graduated from Georgetown University. He managed his father's business interests in Riyadh until his father's assassination. When his father died he inherited a fortune of some $4.1 billion, which won't do him much good if Hizbullah has him bumped off, too.
said the alliance will not be under any circumstance a partner in a political process that gives Hizbullah a cover to its participation in the Syrian war.

In his speech, Nasrallah stressed that the disarmament of resistance groups come only after the abolition of the enemy.

"The enemy facing Leb is still there. It is threatening us and spying on us ... It is also preparing for war," he told his supporters in reference to Israel.

"As long as the enemy threatens us, the resistance will remain to confront this threat," he said in a challenge to the March 14 alliance which has repeatedly called for the party's disarmament.

"No one whatever the circumstances should give up on the cause of Paleostine," he said.

He urged all Mohammedans to stand by the Paleostinian people and extend a helping hand.

Nasrallah called for dialogue, wisdom and political solutions in the Arab countries.

The Hizbullah leader turned to the threat posed by Takfiri
...an adherent of takfir wal hijra, an offshoot of Salafism that regards everybody who doesn't agree with them as apostates who most be killed...
groups, saying they target both Mohammedans and Christians.

"The collaboration of everyone can abolish them," he said.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [272 views] Top|| File under: Hezbollah


Africa Subsaharan
Bad guys kidnap French priest
The foreign ministry of France says a French priest has been kidnapped in northern Cameroon, near the border with Nigeria.

The ministry said Georges Vandenbeusch was abducted late Wednesday near the town of Koza, about 30 kilometers from the border.

The deputy prefect of Cameroon's far northwestern Mayo-Tsanaga district, Ouhe Kolande, confirmed the kidnapping to VOA.
Posted by: badanov || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [343 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Since he's French, how do we know they're bad guys?
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/15/2013 0:12 Comments || Top||

#2 
Posted by: Spereting Tingle4064 || 11/15/2013 7:32 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
IAEA: Iran Halts Expansion of Nuclear Facilities
[An Nahar] Iran has frozen the expansion of its nuclear activities, a UN atomic watchdog report said Thursday, in a possible confidence-building measure by new President Hassan Rouhani before talks nexta week.

The ineffective International Atomic Energy Agency said that in the last three months only four new centrifuges had been installed at Iran's Natanz plant, compared to 1,861 machines put in place in the previous period.

At the Fordo facility too, which also enriches uranium -- which can be used for a nuclear weapon if highly purified -- no new centrifuges were put into operation, the report seen by Agence La Belle France Presse showed.

It added that Iran has also not begun operating any new-generation IR-2M centrifuges and that "no... major components" had been installed at a reactor being built at Arak.

The faster IR-2M centrifuges are of concern to the international community because in theory they shorten the time needed by Iran to produce enough weapons-grade uranium for a nuclear bomb.

The so-called IR-40 reactor at Arak is a worry because it could provide Iran with plutonium, an alternative to uranium for a nuclear weapon, once it has been up and running for 12 to 18 months.

Iran says its nuclear program is peaceful.

"There is absolutely no technical reason for this (freeze)," said a senior diplomat familiar with the IAEA's activities in Iran. "This is clearly a choice."
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [368 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran

#1  And in other news: The Titanic has stopped shipping water.....
Posted by: USN, Ret. || 11/15/2013 0:51 Comments || Top||

#2  Sunshine Policy all over again.

Iran finds another delay tactic - ground breaking, we know.
Posted by: mossomo || 11/15/2013 19:49 Comments || Top||


Africa North
Algeria vows to pursue al-Qaeda
[MAGHAREBIA] An Algerian army unit at dawn on Tuesday (November 12th) took out five bully boyz and maimed another after an armed clash near Debdeb, some 450 kilometres from the centre of Illizi wilaya.
I'm not sure which upazila that's in.
The operation came five days after Prime Minister Abdelmalik Sellal declared during his visit to Tamanrasset wilaya that the only problem faced by Algerian authorities in the region was al-Qaeda.

Sellal vowed to stamp out the terror group, telling prominent figures from the southern region that Algeria would work firmly to eliminate the organization and prevent it from operating on national territory.

He praised the efforts of Tamanrasset residents and others in southern Algeria in maintaining security and stability amid turmoil experienced by neighbouring countries.

But opening the border in the south was not on the agenda, he said, adding that the issue would require "some time". Criminals could "infiltrate the border and instigate problems on the national territory", he warned.

Algerian authorities closed the southern border with the launch of the international military campaign against terrorist groups in northern Mali. They have kept the border closed despite complaints from the local population. It was opened on an exceptional basis for the transport of relief supplies to residents of areas affected by floods in Mali.

Interior Minister Tayeb Belaiz acknowledged that the Libyan border was the main concern for Algeria.

In a press statement Saturday, he said the southern and eastern border was under the direct supervision of the army, instead of civil authorities, due to the security concerns.

He confirmed that the army seized sophisticated weapons and missiles several times along this border. Belaiz stressed that the humanitarian situation on the border with Mali and Niger was taken into account, despite the fact that the frontier was still closed for transport.

Algerian authorities have tightened security measures along the border in recent months, deploying thousands of troops.

The latest operation took place November 1st, when joint security forces incarcerated
Yez got nuttin' on me, coppers! Nuttin'!
two bully boyz in the municipality of Borj Baji Mokhtar. In a second operation, weapons were confiscated in a location near the border town of Tin Zaouatine.

El Khabar reported that the captured bully boyz belonged to a cell active in northern Mali and were part of the battalion led by Mokhtar Belmokhtar, alias Khaled Abou El Abbas or Laaouar. The bully boyz were on their way to northern Mali. Troops confiscated a car and two Kalashnikovs.

Mahmoud Kmama, a Touareg elder in Tamanrasset and member of parliament, told Magharebia that "the state has always been present in southern Algeria through projects that benefit the population in terms of water supply, roads, health coverage and the opening of schools in addition to residential projects".

"Thanks to the efforts of our security units and the co-operation of the region's population, Algeria's borders are fully secured," Kmama said.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [287 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in North Africa


India-Pakistan
Fazl's aide abducted in Tank
[Pak Daily Times] An aide of Jamaat Ulema-e-Islam
...the political wing of the Pak Taliban...
-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman
Deobandi holy man, known as Mullah Diesel during the war against the Soviets, his sympathies for the Taliban have never been tempered by honesty ...
was kidnapped along with his friend from Tank area on Thursday, police sources said. According to reports, Haji Sher Bahadur and his lover companion Haibat Khan were on their way to Dolat Gorna area of Frontier Region Tank when they kidnapped.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [335 views] Top|| File under: Jamaat-e-Ulema Islami

#1  that'll put a twist in the Cannon Dish Towel
Posted by: Frank G || 11/15/2013 10:54 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Syrian Islamist decapitate "pro-Assad soldier" - apologize for mistake
Militants linked to al-Qaeda have asked for forgiveness after they severed the head of the wrong man and displayed it in front of a crowd.
Whoopsie!
In a video posted on YouTube, soldiers from the Syrian-based group Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) were seen holding up the decapitated head of a soldier they believed was a supporter of President Bashar al-Assad. But, after the footage was made public, the victim was recognised by an extremist as, Mohammed Fares, a fellow rebel fighter who had been wounded during a battle.
"What difference does it make?"
It is thought Mr. Fares was injured while fighting pro-Assad forces for the control of military site Base 80 near Aleppo, before he was mistakenly executed. The militant group tried to explain their error by referring to a story in which the prophet Mohammed said Allah would forgive a man who killed a believer by mistake.
Here, the press does the forgiving.
An ISIS spokesman, Oma al-Qahtani, confirmed Mr. Fares had been injured in fighting and had been captured by soldiers, who believed he was fighting against them. He has now said an investigation into the death would be carried out by the appropriate authorities.

The huge mistake has highlighted chaos within the rebel ranks in Syria, which Assad has taken advantage of in recent weeks during a push by his forces south-east of Aleppo.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [422 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Decapitate first, ask questions later.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/15/2013 0:13 Comments || Top||

#2  after the footage was made public, the victim was recognized

Probably from a headshot.
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/15/2013 13:12 Comments || Top||

#3  Heh- nice one, Skid.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 13:28 Comments || Top||

#4  Wait till TW sees your post, Skidmark.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/15/2013 13:28 Comments || Top||

#5  Tahweee about dat.....
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 11/15/2013 13:52 Comments || Top||


Arabia
Qatar to make military service compulsory for 4 months
Qatar’s government has approved a draft law making it compulsory for men to do military service for up to four months, media reports said on Thursday.
Four months? Someone who is or has been in a western military will have to educate me on this, but I don't think you get much of a soldier in four months...
Under the proposed legislation, the first of its kind in Qatar, it would be compulsory for men aged between 18 and 35 to serve in the military for three months if they are graduates, and four if they are not.

The cabinet adopted the bill on Wednesday before submitting it to the Majlis al-Shura, or consultative council.

The move was aimed at mobilising Qataris for the defence of the country and to ensure “a regular force” that would be backed up by poorly trained reservists, if necessary, the official QNA news agency reported.

A Qatari official who spoke to AFP on condition of anonymity said “the aim of the military service is to get young Qataris to rely on themselves,” and that four months was enough.
Enough to rely on themselves for what?
The armed forces of Qatar, which sits on the world’s third largest natural gas reserves, are made up of 11,800 servicemen, according to the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

In Kuwait, parliament is debating a bill for the restoration of compulsory military service, cancelled after the Iraqi army invaded the emirate in 1990 and occupied it for seven months.
Here's hoping al-Maliki doesn't decide to invade them...
Posted by: Steve White || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [398 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Hat tip to the Qataris. Four months is a damn site more that the vast majority of our own politicians have spent in boots.
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 3:34 Comments || Top||

#2  Four months?

Four months will get you people who can pull a trigger usually in the right direction and march to their end as cannon fodder. Six months will get you some more abilities but still in the cannon fodder category. However, better than just shoving a gun into someone's hand and sending them off to die. To make a soldier to modern western standards takes about two years if you don't want to go through the more traditional Darwin 'let god sort them out' elimination process.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 11/15/2013 7:51 Comments || Top||

#3  Yeah, but isn't it better than expecting Americans to fight for them?
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 11/15/2013 12:07 Comments || Top||

#4  Four months?
They propose building a sustainable industry of clothing, housing, feed, transportation, logistics and something of a civilian defense force in a 16 week boot camp. It's also establishing a marker for registering all males of jihadi age without really training them.
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/15/2013 12:54 Comments || Top||

#5  Four months? Someone who is or has been in a western military will have to educate me on this, but I don't think you get much of a soldier in four months...

Maybe they're getting the PLO training course. They could hire the Taliban to provide military instruction, since the Qatari government has allowed the Talibs to establish an office there.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 11/15/2013 19:28 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Damascus Says Opposition Delusional in Demanding Assad Quit
[An Nahar] Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zohbi said Thursday the opposition was dreaming if it believed Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Light of the Alawites...
would agree to quit in order to get it to join proposed peace talks.

He said the basis for the peace conference in Geneva the United Nations
...the Oyster Bay money pit...
is trying to organize with Russian and U.S. support was the final statement of a meeting in the Swiss city last year that made no explicit demand for Assad to step down.

"Those who dream they're going to Geneva to be given the keys to Damascus are stupid people without any political weight who understand nothing about politics and live in cloud cuckoo land," Zohbi told the official SANA news agency.

"Discussions at the Geneva II conference will take place on the basis of the June 30, 2012 statement. It's a clear statement with a precise framework and conditions," he added.

The Damascus government has repeatedly expressed readiness to attend the proposed peace talks but the main opposition National Coalition only agreed earlier this week to participate and on conditions.

Principal among those was that Assad play no part in the political transition.

Zohbi mocked the delayed response by the Coalition to Western calls to attend the much delayed talks, now not expected to convene before next month at the earliest.

"Those who announced their readiness to attend just a few days ago have done so at the behest of their masters," he said.

A pro-government newspaper reported on Thursday that the talks are now expected to convene on December 12.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [232 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria


India-Pakistan
Hakimullah's death plunges Taliban into dangerous disarray
[Pak Daily Times] The killing of one of Pakistain's most wanted faceless myrmidons in a US drone strike has exposed centuries-old rivalries within the group he led, the Pak Taliban, making the insurgency ever more unpredictable and probably more violent.

Hakimullah Mehsud's death this month has set off a power struggle within the outfit's ranks, which could further unnerve a region already on tenterhooks with most US-led troops pulling out of neighbouring Afghanistan in 2014. When a tribal council declared Mullah Fazlullah
...son-in-law of holy man Sufi Mohammad. Known as Mullah FM, Fazlullah had the habit of grabbing his FM mike when the mood struck him and bellowing forth sermons. Sufi suckered the Pak govt into imposing Shariah on the Swat Valley and then stepped aside whilst Fazlullah and his Talibs imposed a reign of terror on the populace like they hadn't seen before, at least not for a thousand years or so. For some reason the Pak intel services were never able to locate his transmitter, much less bomb it. After ruling the place like a conquered province for a year or so, Fazlullah's Talibs began gobbling up more territory as they pushed toward Islamabad, at which point as a matter of self-preservation the Mighty Pak Army threw them out and chased them into Afghanistan...
as the new leader of the Pak Taliban last week, several furious commanders from a rival clan stood up and left.

"When Fazlullah's name was announced, they ... walked out saying, 'The Taliban's command is doomed'," said one commander who attended the November 7 'shura' meeting in South Wazoo. Others at the shura declared loyalty to the hardline new leader and stayed on to map out a plan to avenge Hakimullah's death through a new campaign of bombings and shootings. "This is the start of our fight with the Pakistain government, an American puppet," the Taliban official said.

"Those who forced the Soviet Union out of Afghanistan are capable of breaking up Pakistain," he added, alluding to senior commanders whose rite of passage into war started with the rebellion against Soviet troops in Afghanistan in the 1980s. The Pak Taliban have always been divided, a loose alliance of bully boy bands united only by jihadist beliefs and their hatred of the government and all things Western. The group operates independently of its Taliban allies in Afghanistan, who are fighting US-backed forces there.

But the death of Hakimullah, a member of the dominant Mehsud tribe, and the rise of Fazlullah, a Swat
...a valley and an administrative district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistain, located 99 mi from Islamabad. It is inhabited mostly by Pashto speakers. The place has gone steadily downhill since the days when Babe Ruth was the Sultan of Swat...
Valley native and hence an outsider in the eyes of rustics, changes the picture in the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain (TTP), or Pak Taliban. Under Hakimullah, the TTP had been open to the idea of peace talks with the Pak government, even though no meaningful negotiations had taken place. Fazlullah ruled out any talks and declared the start of a new campaign to attack government and security installations in Punjab, 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...
's political base.

"Mehsuds are not only not happy with this appointment but there are reports of serious infighting among them that might come to the fore in the near future," said Saifullah Mahsud, director of the Pak think tank FATA Research Centre. "I think for now the anti-peace talks group among the TTP has prevailed and hence the appointment of Fazlullah," said Mahsud, who compiles data based on information provided by his sources on the ground in the tribal Pashtun areas.

Fazlullah's threat against Punjab has unnerved Pakistain's most prosperous and populous province, where attacks have so far been rare. Various Pak bully boy groups, including the Sipah-e-Sahaba, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi
... a 'more violent' offshoot of Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistain. LeJ's purpose in life is to murder anyone who's not of utmost religious purity, starting with Shiites but including Brelvis, Ahmadis, Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Rosicrucians, and just about anyone else you can think of. They are currently a wholly-owned subsidiary of al-Qaeda ...
and Jaish-e-Mohammad
...literally Army of Mohammad, a Pak-based Deobandi terror group founded by Maulana Masood Azhar in 2000, after he split with the Harkat-ul-Mujaheddin. In 2002 the government of Pervez Musharraf banned the group, which changed its name to Khaddam ul-Islam and continued doing what it had been doing before without missing a beat...
, are based around Punjab and have been long tolerated or even sponsored by Pakistain's powerful military and intelligence establishment. Some of them were set up to fight Indian forces in disputed Kashmire, but they have turned on Pakistain in recent years thanks to the growing influence of the TTP and al Qaeda, and have become increasingly involved in Taliban affairs.

"The situation is getting out of control and the ISI knows that," said one Western diplomat in Islamabad.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [354 views] Top|| File under: TTP

#1  You kind of expect this sort of thing from anything with Mohammed's name on it. The deepest held values of the Religion of Peace.

Humma humma
Posted by: Spereting Tingle4064 || 11/15/2013 7:36 Comments || Top||

#2  You reap what you sow.
ISI should consider that.
Posted by: 3dc || 11/15/2013 10:49 Comments || Top||


Africa Subsaharan
Mia Farrow Says 'Seeds of Genocide' in Central Africa
[An Nahar] American actress and celebrity campaigner Mia Farrow urged the international community on Thursday to take urgent action to stem violence in the Central African Republic.
And who knows more about Central Africa than Mia Farrow?
Bono?
"CAR is not a forgotten crisis. The population is simply completely abandoned," said Farrow, who is a goodwill ambassador for the UN children's agency UNICEF.

Farrow, 68, recently back from a visit to the conflict-ravaged nation, told news hounds the "seeds of genocide" had been sown there and the world had a moral duty to take a stand.

The Central African Republic has been plagued by instability since a coup by Seleka, a coalition of rebel groups which overthrew longtime president Francois Bozize in March.

Seleka leader, Michel Djotodia, named himself president but agreed to hold elections next year.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [540 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Farrow, 68, recently back from a visit to the conflict-ravaged nation, told news hounds the "seeds of genocide" had been sown there and the world had a moral duty to take a stand.

Stay on and fix it then. What are you doing back in the Big PX ?
Posted by: Besoeker || 11/15/2013 3:25 Comments || Top||

#2  Besoeker, my buddy, doing something and accomplishing things that's for THE little people. She's an idea person just the rest of her elite friends, doncha know.
Posted by: AlmostAnonymous5839 || 11/15/2013 10:06 Comments || Top||

#3  just LIKE the rest

Taking time to re-read my own screeds is not my strong suit.
Posted by: AlmostAnonymous5839 || 11/15/2013 10:09 Comments || Top||

#4  the "seeds of genocide" had been sown there and the world had a moral duty to take a stand

Considering how many times "genocide" has happened in Central Africa, this should have been placed under "Short Attention Span Theater," though I doubt certain readers would've recognized or appreciated the snark.
Posted by: Pappy || 11/15/2013 11:29 Comments || Top||

#5  Careful, Mia. You're making Sally Struthers nervous...
Posted by: PBMcL || 11/15/2013 11:53 Comments || Top||

#6  ...Ms. Farrow does not understand that the seeds of genocide are pretty much evenly distributed about the marble. The differences are whether-or-not the subject populaces allow them to take root...
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 13:00 Comments || Top||

#7  Seeds? A fully harvested crop!
Considering how many times "genocide" has happened in...under-resourced, overpopulated, malnourished, combative culture confrontational regions of exploitable yet apathetic, unsustainable economies.

The "Curse of Nations", soon coming to a theatre near you!
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/15/2013 13:06 Comments || Top||

#8  CAR Refugee: "Jeebus, Mia! Get a sammich or sumpthin"
Posted by: Frank G || 11/15/2013 13:54 Comments || Top||

#9  the "seeds of genocide" had been sown there

Um, okay.
Posted by: Secret Asian Man || 11/15/2013 15:59 Comments || Top||

#10  "seeds of genocide" had been sown there
Isn't that pretty much what caused RoseMias Boo Boo a few decades back?
Posted by: Shipman || 11/15/2013 16:34 Comments || Top||

#11  If she thinks it's bad now - just wait until the U.N. 'Nookie for Food' program gets rolling.

They'll have all the problems they have now as well as what the UN brings in.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 11/15/2013 17:21 Comments || Top||

#12  So just what do you want us to do, Mia? When you have a totally lawless situation, basically you have to bring in military force to bring some semblance of control to the country.

In other words, you have taken over the problem and you own it now, meaning you are the foster parent of this messed up and disfunctional country.

Other people can look at your country and say they have to take over because of some real or imagined situation.

So what is your call, and who do you want to run and pay for this operation?
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 11/15/2013 21:18 Comments || Top||


Africa North
ICC prosecutor: Libya must hand over Qaddafi's kid
[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] International Criminal Court
... where Milosevich died of old age before being convicted ...
prosecutor Fatou Bensouda on Thursday renewed a demand that Libya hand over Muammar Qadaffy
...Custodian of Wheelus AFB for 42 long years until he was ejected from the gene pool by his indignant citizens...
's son to face crimes against humanity charges.


But Libya said that letting Seif al-Islam Qadaffy go on trial outside the country would worsen unrest gripping the country and would even be a threat to his life.

Bensouda called on the U.N. Security Council to press Libya over the dear departed strongman's son, and also for international help including "telephone intercepts" and information on money transfers linked to the Qadaffy family and their associates.

The ICC and Libyan government have been wrangling over Seif al-Islam since the overthrow and killing of his father in October 2011.

The ICC ruled this year against letting Libya put Qadaffy's son on trial at home.

Seif al-Islam is held by a brigade of former rebel fighters and many rights groups say he will not get a fair trial in Libya where the authorities face mounting security concerns amid attacks on government and judicial targets.

Libya has said it will give the ICC new information on the Seif al-Islam case. But Bensouda said it was "fundamentally important" for the Security Council to pressure Libya over the case and for all states to respect ICC warrants.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [242 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Europe
Athens to Begin Building First Mosque after Years of Delay
[An Nahar] Work is finally set to begin on Athens' first mosque, 13 years after plans were first announced, the Greek government announced on Thursday. A Greek consortium has been chosen, the infrastructure ministry said, after five previous attempts to find a business group to lead the project failed.

Athens is one of the few European capitals without a mosque.

The building will have a budget of 946,000 euros ($1.3 million) and will be 600 square meters. It is being built on land formerly used by the military but it will not have a minaret. The project will have to be completed within six months of contracts being signed, said the ministry.

The scheme has been beset by various delays. It was first announced in 2000, ahead of the Olympics in Athens in 2004.

However,
the hip bone's connected to the leg bone...
it has long been opposed by the powerful Greek Orthodox Church. Some 90 percent of Greeks consider themselves Christian.

Although this is the first official mosque, several non-official places of worship have appeared in the Greek capital, thanks to an increasing number of immigrants from countries such as Pakistain.

In 2011, the Greek government was forced to adopt a law ensuring the construction of the mosque, with the first contract tender to be launched in the summer of 2013.

However,
the hip bone's connected to the leg bone...
it took five attempts to award a contract because of concerns over where to place the mosque and protests from those on the extreme right, such as supporters of Golden Dawn.

The only official mosques to be found in Greece are situated in the north east region of Thrace, where a minority group of Mohammedan Turks live.
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [451 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Greece, having solved all of their other problems, introduce a new one...
Posted by: Raj || 11/15/2013 0:28 Comments || Top||

#2  ...Isn't there a limit on the number of civilizational collapses that are allowed per country..?
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 11/15/2013 12:55 Comments || Top||

#3  Well, look on the bright side. It will be a concentrator of sorts.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 11/15/2013 13:55 Comments || Top||

#4  And they can store the explosives on the Acropolis.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 11/15/2013 14:39 Comments || Top||

#5  "And they can store the explosives on the Acropolis again"
expect the same results with less to put back together
Posted by: Kofi Tojo8232 || 11/15/2013 20:19 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Hizbullah Official: Party's Interference in Syria Prevented Regime's Collapse
[An Nahar] A Hizbullah official stated on Thursday that if it weren't for the party's interference in the Syrian war, the Damascus regime would have "certainly collapsed."

"(Syrian President Bashar) Assad' regime would have collapsed in two hours if Hizbullah forces had not intervened in the fighting," a party official told UK's The Times magazine.

He added: "Hizbullah decided that the Syrian regime's falling in the hands of the revolutionaries is not acceptable, because it would have become surrounded by enemies."

The official also revealed that Syria's army is "following the war plans set by Hizbullah fighters."

But when it comes to bombings and air raids, the party is only helping the regime whenever required, while the leadership and commands in these matters are in the hands of the neighboring country's forces, according to the official.

Hizbullah chief His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah
The satrap of the Medes and the Persians in Leb...
reiterated on Thursday that his party's fighters will not withdraw from Syria.

"We have said on several occasions that the presence of our soldiers on Syrian soil is to defend... Syria, which supports the resistance" against Israel, Nasrallah said in a speech he gave on the occasion of Ashura.

"So long as that reason exists, our presence there is justified."
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [249 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria


Caucasus/Russia/Central Asia
Putin Held Up by Taekwondo Bash
Russian President Vladimir Putin was late to his meeting with President Park Geun-hye on Wednesday because he was given an honorary ninth-degree black belt at his hotel.

The World Taekwondo Federation said "a ceremony" was held at the Lotte Hotel at 1 p.m. that day awarding Putin the black belt and a Taekwondo uniform.

The Russian president is keen on conspicuous displays of manliness but does not practice the sport.
That's okay, our president pretends to play golf. And I don't think he worries a bit about appearing manly...
A federation official said the organization contacted Putin about giving him the honorary black belt and that the Russian leader "decided at the last minute on Wednesday morning" to receive it.
Posted by: Steve White || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [439 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I wore anklets on the golf course fewer times than I played barefoot.
Posted by: Shipman || 11/15/2013 16:40 Comments || Top||

#2  Mister Methane Senior.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 11/15/2013 18:49 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Rockets from Syria Land in Bekaa Amid Helicopter Raid
[An Nahar] At least six rockets launched from the Syrian side of the border landed on Thursday on the outskirts of the town of Sarin in the eastern Bekaa Valley as President Michel Suleiman
...before assuming office as President, he held the position of commander of the Leb Armed Forces. That was after the previous commander, the loathesome Emile Lahoud, took office as president in November of 1998. Likely the next president of Leb will be whoever's commander of the armed forces, too...
urged the army to retaliate against border assaults, the state-run National News Agency reported.

NNA said the attack did not cause any casualties after the rockets hit uninhabited areas.

But Voice of Leb radio (100.5) said several houses were damaged in the nearby town of Nabi Sheet where three rockets landed.

After the attack, Syrian warplanes raided the northeastern town of Arsal, NNA said.

They launched four rockets on the town's al-Smaili neighborhood, it added.

The planes carried out a second raid in Kherbet Younin in Arsal's outskirts, NNA said.

Arsal, which lies 12 kilometers from the border with Syria, has been used as a conduit for weapons and rebels to enter Syria, while also serving as a refuge for people fleeing the conflict.

Suleiman later held talks with Army Commander General Jean Qahwaji to discuss the raids, demanding that the army retaliate to them.

He stressed "the need to take the necessary measures to protect the people and Lebanese towns against assaults."
Posted by: Fred || 11/15/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [358 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

#1  While I like the idea of rockets blowing stuff up in the Bekaa, I doubt these are either accurate enough or powerful enough to do much good against dug-in armories. However, they could provide 'cover' for Israeli rockets or bombs, if only Israel could predict when they'd occur.
Posted by: Glenmore || 11/15/2013 8:58 Comments || Top||

#2  the town of Sarin

One can't help wondering just how long this town held that name.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/15/2013 13:27 Comments || Top||



Who's in the News
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2al-Qaeda in North Africa
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1Hezbollah

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Two weeks of WOT
Fri 2013-11-15
  Iraq Bombers Kill 43 as Millions Mark Shiite Holiday
Thu 2013-11-14
  Bomb blasts outside Karachi imambargahs wound 14
Wed 2013-11-13
  Syria Kurds Announce Transitional Autonomous Government
Tue 2013-11-12
  Gunmen gun down 'chief financier' of Haqqani network in Islamabad
Mon 2013-11-11
  Syria army retakes key base near Aleppo: State TV
Sun 2013-11-10
  Imambargah attacks leave three dead, spark outrage
Sat 2013-11-09
  Zawahiri Disbands Main Qaida Faction in Syria
Fri 2013-11-08
  'Mullah Radio' takes overTTP, terms talks 'waste of time'
Thu 2013-11-07
  Nigeria president seeks state of emergency extension
Wed 2013-11-06
  Mortar round hits Vatican embassy in Damascus
Tue 2013-11-05
  152 soldiers sentenced to die for mutiny in Bangladesh
Mon 2013-11-04
  Blast inside Quetta seminary leaves two injured
Sun 2013-11-03
  Gunmen kill 30 in suspected Islamist attack on Nigerian wedding convoy
Sat 2013-11-02
  Egypt army arrests head of Sinai radical militant group, dozens others
Fri 2013-11-01
  Pakistani Taliban chief killed in drone strike: sources

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