Hi there, ! Tuesday December 25th, 2012 

Top PFLP-GC Palestinian operative killed in Syria by Rebels Spanish Government Revokes Imran Firasat's
Refugee Status Because he Made Anti-Mohammed Video
Background: Israel-Hatred Fuels Malaysian Politics Report: Egypt Foils Attempt To Smuggle 17 Rockets To Gaza
Good Christmas Morning from the Wonderful World of Terror Al-Azhar's Grand Imam to respond
to Salafists' 'plan' to remove him

Top Posted by Frank G 12/25/2012  19:04 1 Comments 90 words Link to article
HT to Weasel Zippers. Popcorn anyone?
The Syria-based Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command announced that its operations commander, Madal Elian, was killed by rebels in Syria, according to the Lebanese news channel LBC.
killed by the rebels
The group is one of the last Palestinian factions to remain loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad.
(Former Ophthalmologist, now cranky despot)

#1: Making friends and influencing people, everywhere they go.
Posted by: trailing wife|| 2012-12-25 22:34 ||Top

Top Posted by tipper 12/25/2012  18:43 0 Comments 0 words Link to article

Top Posted by tipper 12/25/2012  01:22 1 Comments 514 words Link to article
The U.N. General Assembly voted overwhelmingly late Monday to hold a conference in March to try to reach agreement on a U.N. treaty to regulate the multibillion-dollar global arms trade.

A resolution approved by a vote of 133-0 with 17 abstentions will bring the 193 U.N. member states back to the negotiating table following their failure to reach agreement on a treaty in July.

Hopes of reaching a treaty in July were dashed when the United States said it needed more time to consider the proposed treaty - and Russia and China then also asked for a delay.

The draft treaty under consideration does not control the domestic use of weapons in any country, but it would require all countries to establish national regulations to control the transfer of conventional arms and to regulate arms brokers. It would prohibit states that ratify the treaty from transferring conventional weapons if they would violate arms embargoes or if they would promote acts of genocide, crimes against humanity or war crimes.

In considering whether to authorize the export of arms, the draft says a country must evaluate whether the weapon would be used to violate international human rights or humanitarian laws or be used by terrorists, organized crime or for corrupt practices.

Many countries, including the United States, control arms exports but there has never been an international treaty regulating the estimated $60 billion global arms trade. For more than a decade, activists and some governments have been pushing for international rules to try to keep illicit weapons out of the hands of terrorists, insurgent fighters and organized crime.

The National Rifle Association, the powerful gun-rights lobbying group in the U.S., has portrayed the treaty as a threat to gun ownership rights enshrined in the U.S. Constitution. The politically controversial issue of gun regulations has re-emerged since a gunman opened fire on Dec. 14 at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, killing 20 children and six educators.

In July, the NRA's CEO Wayne LaPierre told the U.N. that "the NRA wants no part of any treaty that infringes on the precious right of lawful Americans to keep and bear arms." He added that "any treaty that includes civilian firearms ownership in its scope will be met with the NRA's greatest force of opposition."

The co-sponsors of Monday's resolution - Argentina, Australia, Costa Rica, Finland, Japan, Kenya and Britain - welcomed adoption of the resolution and urged all countries "to work in a constructive spirit" to make the March 18-28 conference at U.N. headquarters a success.

In a statement, they said the adoption with over 100 cosponsors "was a clear sign that the vast majority of U.N. member states support a strong, balanced and effective treaty, which would set the highest possible common global standard for the international transfer of conventional arms."

The seven countries expressed support to Australian ambassador Peter Woolcott, the president-designate of the upcoming conference, and said: "We will continue to work hard to ensure that an effective Arms Trade Treaty will be concluded and adopted by consensus at the end of March."

#1: My dear Mr. Woolcott:

In keeping with the spirit of your resolution, you have my eternal promise and steadfast New Year's commitment to refrain from shipping any gun, sharp object, or other evil device to any of the countries listed, nor to your exiled convict brethren dununder.
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 09:07 ||Top

Top Posted by tipper 12/25/2012  01:06 12 Comments 207 words Link to article
Looks like the extremist, radical, clueless bien pensant is getting nervous.
Piers Morgan lashed out on Twitter today after a petition on the White House’s official website demanding his deportation blew past the 25,000 signature mark necessary to require an official response.

The petition, now over 45,000 signatures, asks the White House to deport Morgan, a CNN host, for what it calls an attack on the second amendment. Morgan, who is British, has been an outspoken advocate for gun control in the aftermath of the Newtown shootings earlier this month. The petition calls his advocacy a “hostile attack against the U.S. Constitution,” and demands that he “be deported immediately for his effort to undermine the Bill of Rights and for exploiting his position as a national network television host to stage attacks against the rights of American citizens.”

In the early going, Morgan seemed to be amused by the petition, retweeting links to it and playfully urging his followers to sign. But, after the petition passed the 25,000 threshold, he returned to Twitter to bash it, calling it ridiculous and stating that his positions on gun control are not anti-constitutional but rather common sense. Morgan also retweeted a number of tweets supporting him.

#1: Pommy bastards like Morgan are the reason for the right. Little Lord Not-from-here should have a fair trial, followed by a first-class hanging.
Posted by: Mojo|| 2012-12-25 01:31 ||Top

#2: US Gun Control facts

1 It ain't gonna happen, buddy
2 Over my dead body
3 Correction, over your dead body
4 Er...
5 That's it

You know the biggest problem the US has, is that your split 50/50 while China is slowly but surely taking over while you piss on each other at home
Posted by: Eohippus Ebbealet9026|| 2012-12-25 05:55 ||Top

#3: For that bit of British encouragement dankie Ebbealet. If any assistance with the concentration camps is needed, we'll be in touch.

• Aliwal North
• Balmoral
• Barberton
• Belfast
• Bethulie
• Bloemfontein
• Brandfort
• Heidelberg
• Heilbron
• Howick
• Irene
• Kimberley
• Klerksdorp
• Kroonstad
• Krugersdorp
• Merebank
• Middelburg
• Norvalspont
• Nylstroom
• Pietermaritzburg
• Pietersburg
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 08:51 ||Top

#4: General Thomas Gage, of his royal majesty's Army, tried gun grabbing before. I'm sure you're starting to feel the heat his people did.

If you're feeling so 'multi-cultural' let me add a line from the Mexican constitution (Art.33), to wit "Foreigners may not in any way participate in the political affairs of the country."
Posted by: P2Kontheroad|| 2012-12-25 09:26 ||Top

#5: US Gun Control facts

1 It ain't gonna happen, buddy
2 Over my dead body
3 Correction, over your dead body
4 Er...
5 That's it

You know the biggest problem the US has, is that your split 50/50 while China is slowly but surely taking over while you piss on each other at home

Eohippus Ebbealet9026 is right, I think, about the gun bit. Also about the US being split 50/50 and pissing on each other, though I would have added roughly before that, for unnecessary accuracy. But while China would like to take over the world, I suspect it doesn't have what it takes; on the contrary, I would have finished with the world is falling apart, as can be seen in the inevitable progress of the Arab Spring countries, on the one hand, and the economies of the West, on the other.
Posted by: trailing wife|| 2012-12-25 10:40 ||Top

#6: Votes are now over 68 thousand. I voted for this laughing and with the following ditty running through my mind.

You cannot hope to bribe or twist
(thank God!) the British journalist.
But, seeing what the man will do
unbribed, there's no occasion to.

Credit to Humbert Wolfe

PM should not be deported on a speech issue of course. It is nice though to push back and show his view is not wisdom from on high, universally accepted. Maybe put a scare on him too, as Bedford Forest would say.:-)
Posted by: Dogsbody|| 2012-12-25 12:17 ||Top

#7: Thanks for the reminder of that quote, Dog. I'd forgotten it after so many years.

I've got a better idea than deporting this twit. I presume he's located in the New York branch of CNN (can't imagine this "world citizen" deigning to live in Hotlanta).

Mr. Morgan, we insist you demand - as an immediate condition of your present contract - that there be NO guns ANYWHERE in the building where you work, or where you live. NO armed guards, NO armed bodyguards (including off-duty or on-duty police officers) for anyone who works where you work or lives where you live. (And no armed bodyguards in between, either.) Announce, with all your Leftist friends, that it's a deal-breaker.

After all, if you and your fellow travelers Leftists really believe guns are the problem, you wouldn't want any carried/used anywere around you anyway, right?



F'ing hypocrites.
Posted by: Barbara|| 2012-12-25 13:08 ||Top

#8: CNN announced this would all boost his ratings. Lefty thought. Not that I would tune him in at my house. He and his drivel is not welcome in my house. He comes from a country thar enslaved more colonies taxing them to make a king wealthy. If he wants to fix a country I say, "go home! Yours is a royal mess".
Posted by: 49 Pan|| 2012-12-25 13:25 ||Top

#9: never watched him except in mocking youtube clips where he did or said something outrageously stoopid. He will fade in his already miniscule ratings
Posted by: Frank G|| 2012-12-25 18:25 ||Top

#10: ask him about insider dealing and phone hacking...
Posted by: Bright Pebbles|| 2012-12-25 18:54 ||Top

#11: I'd imagine "Piers fights back" like a effeminate slapfight
Posted by: Frank G|| 2012-12-25 20:49 ||Top

#12: "Piers fights back against whines"

Posted by: Barbara|| 2012-12-25 22:39 ||Top

Top Posted by tipper 12/25/2012  01:03 4 Comments 0 words Link to article

#1: Given that while the rest of the country is in the economic doldrums or sinking, the area around DC is gathering ever more wealth. The ruling class and its apparatchiks are certainly the Prince John and the Sheriff of the old story. They are not Robin.
Posted by: P2Kontheroad|| 2012-12-25 09:43 ||Top

#2: I have a feeling ye ole beltway economic immunity may be tapering off in the coming days P2K. Much of that financial energy is defense related.
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 09:46 ||Top

#3: All of this seems so familiar. Kinda like before the Roman Republic collapsed kind of familiar.
Posted by: DarthVader|| 2012-12-25 10:39 ||Top

Posted by: George Glaigum7976|| 2012-12-25 10:53 ||Top

Top Posted by tipper 12/25/2012  01:00 5 Comments 15 words Link to article
A Muslim discusses the coming Holocaust of Muslims in Europe

#1: Moral equivalence takes strange forms.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru|| 2012-12-25 03:02 ||Top

#2: Now, when I think of it, there are certain similarities---with Europeans standing for Jews.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru|| 2012-12-25 06:07 ||Top

#3: And the Muslims will have brought it on themselves. If non muslim countries were smart, they wouldn't allow muslims entry.
Posted by: Secret Asian Man|| 2012-12-25 11:42 ||Top

#4: Secret Asian,
The problem is that the Euro governments CAN'T shut off Muslim immigration...it's their taxes that barely keep the socialist system working because the Euro states mostly have negative population growth. Somebody has to work to keep the goodies coming, and even with as many are on the dole enough are working to keep the system functioning, albeit in a downward spiral.

Posted by: Mike Kozlowski|| 2012-12-25 19:33 ||Top

#5: Agree wid #4 - Muslims = EuroZone's "Hispanics" whose utility to the horribly oversized Welfare-Nanny State is overwhelming.

Just as in the US, its more important for Big Govt-centric Lefties + Socialists-Govtists to make sure that illegals stay illegal and keep coming over the border - MORESO NOW IN THE AGE OF PRO-OWG/GG "GLOBALISM" + MULTI-STATE REGIONAL + TRANS-REGIONAL "GLOBAL FEDERAL UNIONS" OR "UNIONS".



National + Global Anarchy, by + for the sake of Anarchy - YOU KNOW, WORLDWIDE aka GLOBAL SOCIALISM.


But I digress ...

Posted by: JosephMendiola|| 2012-12-25 20:22 ||Top

Top Posted by trailing wife 12/25/2012  00:28 5 Comments 1824 words Link to article
Mythic anti-Semitism and Islamic radicalization alongside democratic aspirations and hopeful opposition; a look into contemporary Malaysian culture, politics, society

MALAYSIA -- "The world is in complete disarray. Evil spreads across Arab countries like dark clouds. A man who awakes a believer might lose his faith at nighttime. People trade their religion for a tiny portion of earthly goods. Whoever remains faithful will resemble a man holding blazing cinders. The temple will be the reason for the destruction of a country. The rebuilding of Temple will accompany the destruction of a country and a horrible battle."

Numerous texts circulate in the Mohammedan world, prophesying the ominous emergence of Dajjal, a false prophet considered to be "the Jewish King," whose coming will incite Armageddon. Dozens if not hundreds of millions of Mohammedans around the world are extremely concerned with the impending coming of said king.

The text continues: "The occupation of Constantinople will be accompanied by the appearance of the king of Jews -- Dajjal. Yes, the Jews are waiting impatiently to the arrival of their beloved king. And he shall appear; he shall conquer the earth, from east to west. He shall command all creatures to worship him. He will emerge from the valley between Syria and Iraq, and spread disarray and mayhem all over. His desire is to lead humanity down the path of utter disbelief or the assuming of some false religion. Many will follow him, saying that he provides them with food. He will instill in them a false hope of his ability to restore the world's balance."

Dajjal signifies the ultimate evil under Islamic belief. The meaning of the name in Arabic is "deceiving" -- a false messiah. Mohammedan traditions depict him in various manners: Some argue he would be emerge as a man blind in one eye; others see him as a monstrous creature, whose head is above the clouds and his feet are in the bottom of the ocean.

Regardless, the fate of the Jewish King is determined. He is to rule the earth a mere 40 days until Allah's true messenger will defeat and destroy him and all his followers, leaving only Mohammedans to walk the earth.

I was not aware of the intensity of this apocalyptic prophecy until I stumbled upon the overwhelming abundance of Dajjal-related literature in book shops and booths across Malaysia. From the capital's Islamic museum's gift-shop to improvised paraphernalia market booths, books focusing on the false-prophesying Jewish King are sold alongside decorative Koran books, prayer mats and DVDs featuring local preachers.

Islamic apocalyptic literature thrives in Malaysia, as in the rest of the Mohammedan world. Clerics and self-ordained experts offer contemporary interpretation to the figure of Dajjal and his imminent emergence. Many argue that his coming is correlated with conflicts in the Middle East: Prediction of a nuclear war between Iran and Israel; Jewish domination of the Temple Mount and the expulsion of Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock; revolution in the Arab world; the suffering of Mohammedans by the hands of Christians and Jews. On top of everything, recent natural disasters -- from massive earthquakes to floods in Southeast Asia -- are perceived as omens for nearing fulfillment of the apocalyptic prophecy.

According to Islamic oral tradition, upon Dajjal's arrival, an army of 70,000 Jews from Iran's Ispahan will follow him. The uncompromising prophecy ignores the fact that Iran currently boasts only 20,000 Jews. Nevertheless, according to Mohammedan scholars, Dajjal is undoubtedly Jewish, or as they put it: "The son of a Jewish mother." Some even argue that he was already born and is residing in the Jewish State.

Jews and other minorities
In Malaysia, one of the strongest economies in Southeast Asia, with a population of some 30 million people, there has never been a large Jewish community. Following the British Empire's mid-19th century conquest of the emirates that would later create the Federation of Malaya, a few merchant families from Iraq, India, China and Europe have settled in the multicultural port-cities Melaka and George Town.

During WWII, most of Malaysia's Jewish population fled to Singapore, in fear of the Japanese invasion. Nearly all Jews that returned after the war left the country again in the 1970s, due to a bloody civil war and ensuing islamization-related anti-Semitism.

The synagogue at the constituent island of Penang was officially closed in 1976, for lack of worshipers, and what was once known as the "street of the Jews" is now the residence of the ruling Islamic party's offices.

Though many in the world perceive Malaysia as a successful example of a country that manages to integrate Islamic law with democratic values, the country's Mohammedan majority -- though it comprises only a little over 50% of the population -- seems to exercise hostility toward many of the country's minorities, which could perhaps account for the fact that even though there are hardly any Jews in the country, it is infected with anti-Semitism.

"Wherever you look, you'll see how the government... exercises a divide and conquer policy so as to stop the key minorities -- Chinese, Indian, Christians, atheists, Buddhists and Pagans -- from uniting," said a Malaysian opposition activist, who spoke anonymously.

"A little over 40 years ago, the 'democratic' Malaysia declared a state of emergency, by which the government was empowered to detain any person indefinitely without trial," he said.

"This country has no democracy. You can't express your opinion freely. The government controls he media. You can't believe a word of what is being printed in the papers. Instead of creating a shared national identity, they're creating cultural ghettos for the minorities, and offer benefits to everyone willing to convert to Islam -- from governmental assistance to jobs.

"This religious apartheid," the activist continued," is seen at its worst in east Malaysia... where a large population of pagans reside. We know of many cases in which medical students were sent to eastern regions to perform surgeries on non-Mohammedans... when in fact the students were conducting medical experiments on these people, experiments that would often result in death."

The ubiquity of anti-Jewish perceptions in Islamic culture is therefore linked to a political atmosphere of general xenophobia and an absence of an actual Jewish community to humanize the demonic misconceptions. All that, coupled with a diplomatic instability when it comes to ties with the Jewish State, raises many questions in regards to the democratic future of Malaysia, in the face of potential radicalization, as well as to its cultural and political ties with Israel.

Political turmoil
Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, 64, a former minister and deputy prime minister and said in January interview with the Wall Street Journal: "I support all efforts to protect the security of the state of Israel."

As a result, Malaysian government officials accused Ibrahim for essentially acknowledging the State of Israel, in contradiction with the declared policy of his country. Protests were organized against him, claiming that he was "pro-Israeli."

Ibrahim was forced to issue an official statement declaring that his words were taken out of context and that he in fact expressed his support of a two-state solution that would ensure both that the rights of Paleostinians were defended and that Israel's defense was secured.

In May 2010, however, Ibrahim spoke against Jews, up to a point that B'nai B'rith International, a prominent Jewish human rights
...which often include carefully measured allowances of freedom at the convenience of the state...
organization condemned him, claiming that he was a "purveyor of anti-Jewish hatred."

Ibrahim's branding as a "political chameleon" by his own country is indicative to the country's fluctuation.

Furthermore, though the Malaysian government vowed that it would not construct any diplomatic ties with Israel, Former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has maintained amicable ties with Israeli prime ministers -- in the 1990s as peace negotiations with Paleostinians were at their peak, Mahathir was corresponding with Israeli prime ministers Benjamin Netanyahu, Ehud Barak and Yizthak Rabin, in a letter to whom he added in his own handwriting: "I wish for normal ties with Israel."

A US bigwig who was involved with efforts to promote Israeli-Malaysian ties told Ynet that, the "Local regimes repeatedly reject our efforts to promote (diplomatic ties with Israel) and claim that they're afraid of the reactions of fundamentalist Islamists."

A Westerner familiar with Malaysian history argued that "part of the Malaysian Mohammedans' sympathy with Paleostinians stems from the fact that most Mohammedans in the country are the descendants of the region's indigenous people. The rest of the ethnic minorities -- Chinese, Indians and others -- were brought in by the British colonization systems in order to develop Malaysia's economy. The latter started to accumulate assets, funds and statuses that the Mohammedans feel were taken away from them.

"Ever since the independence, and especially under the rule of Mahathir, there was an effort to strengthen the economic, political and public status of Mohammedans. From the 1970s onwards, a clear process of Islamic radicalization has been consequently underway, and the Paleostinian issue and subsequent anti-Semitic atmosphere have been a dominant part in that radicalization," the source noted.

According to the estimates of the anonymous opposition activist, "If political upheaval indeed occurs, it will only be in the direction of further radicalization, seeing as radical Islamists are part of the opposition. The Islamists are perceived as 'clean' politicians in the face of a corrupt government. They will also get many votes of Chinese and Indian voters.

"So many people around me are willing to go the extra mile to finally bring down the ruling party, but they're not really taking into account the meaning that their votes will have on their futures," the activist concluded.

#1: So, how's different from the "rest of the world" politics?
Posted by: g(r)omgoru|| 2012-12-25 06:05 ||Top

#2: but they're not really taking into account the meaning that their votes will have on their futures," the activist concluded.
Posted by: trailing wife

Strangely, I've reached the very same conclusion here!
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 09:35 ||Top

#3: The rest of the ethnic minorities -- Chinese, Indians and others -- were brought in by the British colonization systems in order to develop Malaysia's economy. The latter started to accumulate assets, funds and statuses that the Mohammedans feel were taken away from them

Swap 'muslims' for other ethnic groups, and it sounds an awful lot like Los Angeles (and the California university system).
Posted by: Pappy|| 2012-12-25 11:09 ||Top

#4: The way they describe things you wouldn't guess in a thousand years the Moslems were just another wave of colonists.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain|| 2012-12-25 12:24 ||Top

#5: Son???

Posted by: JosephMendiola|| 2012-12-25 19:46 ||Top

Top Posted by trailing wife 12/25/2012  00:28 3 Comments 83 words Link to article
Egyptian armed forces foiled an attempt to smuggle 17 French-made TDI model rockets into the Gazoo Strip, the Egypt Independent quoted an anonymous military sources as saying Monday.

According to the report, Egyptian military forces, in cooperation with local Bedouins, stopped the smuggling attempt in northern Sinai. The rockets intercepted were caliber 68 mm, which have a range of three kilometers.

#1: Let it be a lesson to you---stingy never works!
Posted by: g(r)omgoru|| 2012-12-25 06:06 ||Top

#2: They make them out of Pipes, sewer pipes.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 09:41 ||Top

#3: ...while you are watching what the left hand is doing...
Posted by: M. Murcek|| 2012-12-25 11:24 ||Top

Top Posted by trailing wife 12/25/2012  00:28 0 Comments 422 words Link to article
[Ma'an] Paleostinian banks will lend the Paleostinian Authority $100 million to see it through a financial crisis caused by Israeli sanctions, the Paleostine Monetary Authority chief said Wednesday.
Can't keep it under the mattress or buried in a coffee tin in the backyard because the government street thugs will take it, can't put it in a bank because the government white collar thugs will 'borrow' it... it's almost enough to make a West Banker move beyond hurling rocks to engage in real jihad.
The PMA reached an agreement with bank representatives for the short-term loan that will be repaid when the Arab League
...an organization of Arabic-speaking states with 22 member countries and four observers. The League tries to achieve Arab consensus on issues, which usually leaves them doing nothing but a bit of grimacing and mustache cursing...
delivers its promised financial security net, Jihad al-Wazir said in a statement.
And there's no promise like an Arab League promise...
The Paleostinian Authority has already borrowed over $1.2 million from banks, al-Wizar said.

The cash advance would enable the government to make partial payments of late salaries, the finance ministry said.

Government employees in the West Bank began a two-day strike on Wednesday to protest against a delay in the payment of their wages caused by Israeli economic sanctions.
They're like PEUs in the U.S....
Israel is withholding about $100 million in monthly customs revenues it collects on the Paleostinians' behalf as punishment for their successful bid at the UN General Assembly last month to gain de-facto statehood recognition.

The Paleostinian Authority was suffering a deep financial crisis even before the move, and has had to delay payments to its 153,000 public sector workers several times this year.

"This strike is against Israel's piracy," said Bassam Zakarneh, chief of the government employees' union.

"The situation is very grave and the services to the people are much reduced by the strike," he said. "(People) can't even afford transportation to their workplaces."

Government workers last received salaries for October, which were paid belatedly at the end of November.

Top Posted by trailing wife 12/25/2012  00:28 0 Comments 893 words Link to article
Mind you, this is the secular side of the Paleostinian territories.
[Ma'an] President the ineffectual Mahmoud Abbas
... a graduate of the prestigious unaccredited Patrice Lumumba University in Moscow with a doctorate in Holocaust Denial...
has no plans to amend laws that reduce sentences for suspects who claim an "honor" defense for murdering women, his legal adviser says.

"Why change it? This would cause serious problems," Hassan al-Ouri told Ma'an, adding that such a reform would "not benefit women."

In May 2011, the president pledged to amend the law to guarantee maximum penalties for "honor killing" in response to protests over the killing of university student Aya Baradiya in Hebron.

The decision was announced in a phone call to a primetime show on state TV, drawing tears among crowds of mourners shown in a live link-up from the Ramallah studio to Baradiya's hometown.

Abbas suspended Article 340, which offers a pardon for murder if the perpetrator committed the crime on finding his wife in bed with another man.

The reform was cosmetic: Article 340 had never been used in Paleostinian courts since it was legislated in 1960.

"So why did we change the law? To garner public opinion," al-Ouri said in an interview in the presidential compound in Ramallah.

"I, personally, was against the amendment because the crimes that happen in the street have no relevance to Article 340," the legal adviser added.

Al-Ouri says the president will not change the go-to clauses for lawyers seeking leniency for clients who claim they committed murder to defend family "honor."

Articles 97 to 100 of the Jordanian Penal Code, in force in the West Bank, still offer reduced sentences for any act of battery or murder committed in a "state of rage."

"The (law) only addresses 1 percent of the problem. What we need is a new culture," al-Ouri said.

Other officials insist the penal code is the problem.

The law "privileges the killer," Interior Ministry official Haitham Arrar told Ma'an.

"It encourages some people to commit crimes against women, which will go (as far as) killing them," said Arrar, who heads the ministry's democracy and human rights
One man's rights are another man's existential threat.

Abbas fears 'conservative forces'

The Paleostinian Legislative Council has not met since 2007, when Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, and Fatah split, but women's rights expert Soraida Hussein dismisses arguments that reforms must wait until parliament reconvenes.

"For us, for women, all this is irrelevant," said Hussein, general director of the Women's Technical Affairs Committee, an umbrella group of women's organizations. "Until now, our lives -- in law and in practice -- are seen as less than men's."

The president should issue a decree that "anybody killing anyone else will be sentenced to the highest sentence possible, whether it is a woman or a boy," says Hussein.

"The minute the law is changed and applied, the minute people will think twice," she says. "It's simple and it's not done."

Hussein suggests Abbas is hesitant to pass legal reforms because "he is not ready yet to confront conservative forces."

In 2009, Abbas ratified the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, but al-Ouri, the legal adviser, says it will only be implemented "so long as it doesn't contravene Islamic code."

"Look, we are for total equality but if there is a basic tenet of Islamic code that we would be forced to change under CEDAW, then people would revolt and brand us as non-believers," al-Ouri said.

'Dressing up honor'

Lax laws encourage murder suspects to claim "honor" in their defense, officials and women's rights activists say.

"Because the penalty is one or two months, they consider killing her and dress it up as honor," Minister of Women's Affairs Rahiba Diab told Ma'an.

Khawla al-Azraq, who runs a women's counseling center in Bethlehem, notes that femicide is a global issue but "now in Paleostine, they call this honor killing."

"Sometimes these girls are abused by someone in the family and they need to cover this (up) and they kill her; sometimes because they need her money," she says. "These are the real reasons for killing."

"In Paleostine, this is the gap, that until now we don't have our own legislation that really can protect women."

The Independent Commission of Human Rights says 13 women have been killed this year, but the real figure is likely to be higher.

"There has been historically a problem of documentation," says Hussein, the women's rights expert. The cause of suspicious deaths of women was often recorded as "fate," which could refer to forced "suicides" or being pushed from a building, she explained.

Despite repeated requests since September, the Ministry of Interior did not provide Ma'an with the official number of women whose deaths were recorded as "fate" in 2012.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:24 21 Comments 22 words Link to article

#1: polka dots...why do they hate us?
Posted by: Warthog|| 2012-12-25 00:54 ||Top

#2: A very Merry Christmas to all our men and women who serve. May God grant you safe return to your loved ones and know that we are with you in spirit..
Posted by: Warthog|| 2012-12-25 00:57 ||Top

#3: And a Merry Christmas to Fred, the moderators, and all those who visit Rantburg regularly!
Posted by: Ptah|| 2012-12-25 04:40 ||Top

#4: Merry Christmas to all, especially those making sure we can celebrate next year.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble|| 2012-12-25 06:41 ||Top

#5: Wishing you and yours all the joys of Christmas day, dear friends, with gratitude to those who enable us to celebrate in peace.
Posted by: trailing wife|| 2012-12-25 07:38 ||Top

#6: Merry Christmas to all, for a child was born....
Posted by: Frank G|| 2012-12-25 08:06 ||Top

#7: "Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"
Posted by: AlanC|| 2012-12-25 08:23 ||Top

#8: Y'all certainly beat me to it.

What warthog, ptah, NS, and tw said.

Merry Christmas to all! (And lumps of coal to those who deserve it.)
Posted by: Barbara|| 2012-12-25 09:06 ||Top

#9: We all deserve it at some level, Barbara - I'm grateful that I don't get what I deserve some times. :-)

Joy of the day to all our Rantburg readers, who make this the rich online community it is.
Posted by: lotp|| 2012-12-25 09:10 ||Top

#10: Happy Christmas
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 09:17 ||Top

#11: Merry Christmas!
Posted by: JohnQC|| 2012-12-25 10:00 ||Top

#12: Birthday Gam Shot

Helena Christensen [Filmography](age 44)

To Gorb from Santa

Posted by: GolfBravoUSMC|| 2012-12-25 11:55 ||Top

#13: Merry xmas.

And now for postprandial snooze.
Posted by: Bright Pebbles|| 2012-12-25 12:39 ||Top

#14: Merry Christmas 'burgers!
Posted by: DarthVader|| 2012-12-25 14:09 ||Top

#15: Sing along with Jan
Posted by: tipper|| 2012-12-25 14:14 ||Top

#16: No more shopping days 'til Christmas ....

Posted by: gorb|| 2012-12-25 14:32 ||Top

#17: I guess pumps and bicycles do make sense sometimes.
Posted by: gorb|| 2012-12-25 14:41 ||Top

#18: WWJD?
Posted by: gorb|| 2012-12-25 14:55 ||Top

#19: Christmas Day Thread

"Lieutenant Geoffrey Heinekey, new to the 2nd Queen's Westminister Rifles, wrote to his mother, 'A most extraordinary thing happened. . . . Some Germans came out and held up their hands and began to take in some of their wounded and so we ourselves immediately got out of our trenches and began bringing in our wounded also. The Germans then beckoned to us and a lot of us went over and talked to them and they helped us to bury our dead. This lasted the whole morning and I talked to several of them and I must say they seemed extraordinarily fine men. . . . It seemed too ironical for words. There, the night before we had been having a terrific battle and the morning after, there we were smoking their cigarettes and they smoking ours." (p. 5)
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 16:05 ||Top

#20: Saxons you know, not Prussians.
Posted by: Shipman|| 2012-12-25 17:58 ||Top

#21: Merry Christmas + Feliz Navidad.
Posted by: JosephMendiola|| 2012-12-25 23:42 ||Top

Top Posted by Pappy 12/25/2012  00:04 11 Comments 593 words Link to article
When Senator Barack Obama was running for president back in 2008, he accused the Bush administration, his opponent Senator John McCain, and their supporters of taking their eyes off the ball by fighting a war in Iraq and ignoring the "necessary war"--the war in Afghanistan. Well, four short years later, by Obama's lights, Afghanistan is no longer the necessary war but a war to be ignored, a war to be "ended" regardless of the strategic consequences of doing so precipitously.

None of this should come as a surprise. Since early in his presidency, when deigning to speak at all about Afghanistan, President Obama has said little about why defeating the Taliban is important. When he does make reference to Afghanistan, it's invariably to talk of timelines for bringing the troops home or, as he said at the U.N. in September, ending the war "on schedule in 2014." Of course, saying the war will end on schedule doesn't make it reality -- a fact Afghans know all too well.

With the Taliban on their heels but not defeated, Pakistani intelligence releasing incarcerated Taliban back onto the streets, roadmaps being drawn up for "peace talks" that would allow hardcore Taliban officials into Afghan governing posts, and Obama administration plans to eliminate funding for some 100,000 Afghan security forces after we leave, it's no wonder arms sales in Afghanistan are booming--not only for warlords who control local militias but also for ordinary citizens. The tragedy is that this needn't be the case.

As limited an effort as the surge in Afghanistan has been, it's had real success. In Helmand and Kandahar, previously key Taliban strongholds, American, Afghan, and allied forces have cleared insurgent bastions and defeated every attempt by the Taliban over the past year to regain their lost territory. But because the administration was determined to go "light" on the number of surge troops and then draw them down more rapidly than had been recommended by commanders, the original plan to tackle simultaneously the insurgent presence in Afghanistan's eastern provinces was never executed. Now, with the anticipated drawdown of the remaining troops over the next year, a full-on counterinsurgency effort in that region will never take place. Nor is it the case that Afghan security forces have not stepped up their game. When partnered with American and allied combat forces, Afghan troops have learned their trade and begun to fight well. However, they still lack the logistics, intelligence, and mobility capabilities needed to go it alone. Sustaining our combat and support efforts for just a few more years would ensure that when our combat teams do leave Afghanistan, there is a force in place that can effectively defend its own homeland.

Critics of the war like to point out that the Afghan conflict is the longest overseas war in American history--implying that it's a hopeless case. Yet, for much of that time, the effort in Afghanistan was a holding action, with the war in Iraq eating up time, resources, and energy until the American surge and change in strategy in 2006-07 turned that conflict around. The nation might well be tired of war, but it's only been a little over three years since President Obama announced his own surge and new strategy. When it comes to counterinsurgencies, a little patience goes a long way.

But this is not a patient president. The pattern for Iraq, Libya, and now Afghanistan has been basically the same. End American military involvement as soon as possible, and damn the consequences.

#1: Don't have time for this.
Gotta plan the retreat from Africa.
Posted by: Skidmark|| 2012-12-25 01:08 ||Top

#2: Better late than never.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru|| 2012-12-25 06:08 ||Top

#3: I don't think the admin is aiming toward a complete withdrawal.

The plan is, to have about 10k troops at a base near Kabul to keep the Taliban from overrunning that part of the country (at least until Nov 2016), to coordinate drone strikes and, if possible, to support ops of the Afghan army.
Posted by: lord garth|| 2012-12-25 09:40 ||Top

#4: It seldom works Lord G.
Paris, Berlin, and Saigon to name but a few examples.

German Army Defense of Berlin in World War II
World War II, Battle of Berlin
© 2006 131 pages; 8 chapters and 1 appendix

“On the evening of 23 April, General Weidling took command of the city and that same night moved the troops of the 56th Panzer Corps into Berlin. The divisions were immediately committed at crucial points in the battle lines. Remnants of the 20th Panzer Grenadier Division went into action in the southwest, Panzer Division "Muenchenberg" in the southeast, SS
Panzer Grenadier Division "Nordland" and remnants of SS Panzer Grenadier Division "Nederland" in the east, and the 18th Panzer Grenadier Division in the northern and southern parts of the Zoo sector. This indication of the distribution of
forces can serve only as a general guide, since the position and composition of the units changed daily and even hourly.

The Panzer corps and the SS units under Mohnke now carried the burden of the stiffening resistance to the uninterrupted Russian attacks, which were concentrated in the southeast, east, and north. In the west, Berlin was attacked by comparatively weaker forces, but they were still far superior to the defenders. The forces advancing from the south behind the 1st Ukrainian Army Group had to divert elements against the Ninth Army, Potsdam, and later the Twelfth Army.

In the course of heavy fighting, the German troops were pushed back to the city circuit railroad and even beyond it. By 30 April only the government sector, the immediate vicinity of the Tiergarten and a strip extending westward from the Zoo sector to the Havel River were still held by the defenders. The Russians employed a planned and methodical procedure
of attack. Bombing and heavy artillery and mortar fire preceded every fresh assault. The infantry was supported by tanks advancing singly or in group formation and by engineer troops with flame-throwers and demolition equipment. Advances
were made by small sectors - street by street and house by house. The infantry took every opportunity to infiltrate through back yards, cellar passageways, subway tunnels, and sewers. In this way many of the defense positions were
stormed from behind or below.”
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 09:58 ||Top

#5: Don't forget the all-important 'Serving as Targets.' as specified in the ROE.
Posted by: CrazyFool|| 2012-12-25 09:59 ||Top

#6: Flexible mobile defenses, such as what the Germans employed against the Soviets between 1942 and 1945, cease to work when your back is against a wall.
Posted by: badanov||http://www.freefirezone.org|| 2012-12-25 10:39 ||Top

#7: Saigon is a reasonable comparison, but the Taliban with some Pakastani support is weaker than the North Vietnamese army combined with the Viet Cong with stronger support from China and Russia. So, even though the Karzai government is weaker and even more incompetent and corrupt than the South Vietnamese government, they may have a better chance to hold with some American support because their opposition isn't as strong.

Berlin isn't a match at all. The German position had been hopeless for years given the huge allied advantage in production capability (USA!), manpower (Soviets), and with England as an unsinkable aircraft carrier.

As Badanov says, mobile defense no longer has the the room to succeed when your back is against the wall. However, it even has trouble working, even with a genius like Manstein in command, when the commander-in-chief insists on micro-managing, preventing quick decision-making based on local conditions (which had been a hallmark of Prussian success over the centuries), and holding lines to the point of encirclement.
Posted by: Odysseus|| 2012-12-25 13:41 ||Top

#8: Thankless bastards prefer life under the talibunnies' boot heel anyway.
Posted by: bigjim-CA|| 2012-12-25 14:55 ||Top

#9: Cookies r good
Posted by: badanov||http://www.freefirezone.org|| 2012-12-25 15:02 ||Top

#10: Probably right Bigjim. Proves that you cannot impose freedom on a nation collection of tribes.
Posted by: CrazyFool|| 2012-12-25 15:04 ||Top

#11: The Taliban in charge of Pakistan's Govt. = espec its NucProgs.

All thats missing is a de facto local "Muslim Brotherhood" chapter for AFPAK to counter the "militant/militarist" Taliban + Qaeda.



Iff the US does nothing + pulls out, the Jihad expands + goes "legally" Nuclear - iff the US still wages a GWOT e.g. makes war on Iran, the Jihad expands + still goes Nuclear [violently] save in response to alleged US "aggressionism/
belligerence/imperialism" agz Islam.


The NAU-centric US, whom by its own NIC may not be a "Sole" Superpower, or even a Superpower, by 2030, will need the permission of Mexico, Canada, + Greenland to go to war includ fighting the Hard Boyz. Washington, DC will be suborned to a NAU Leadership which may or may not be led by an American [Obama "Birther" Controversy].


And thus, Virgina, we learn once again why God wanted the US Marines + Airborne to invade Greenland.


'Tis fine to be pro-Peace + anti-War in Peacetime, but its absolutely stupid + moronic to be Anti-Imperialist, anti-Destruction/
Violence, + anti-Victory once war is declared or made.
Posted by: JosephMendiola|| 2012-12-25 20:58 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 752 words Link to article
[Al Ahram] Al-Azhar's Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayeb is to hold a presser on Monday responding to allegations made by Salafist preacher Yasser Borhami that Islamists reached a deal with the Imam whereby Al-Azhar's representatives in the Constitutuent Assembly agreed to give more prominence for Sharia in the draft constitution in exchange for Islamists agreeing to immune the Imam from removal.
In a video circulating on social media networks, Borhami, a member of the assembly that wrote the country's draft constitution, was seen apologising at length to a Salafist conference organised last month for "his inability to convince the assembly to remove the article making the Al-Azhar Grand Imam immune from removal."

The controversial preacher, however, told his audience the non-removal clause could be circumvented by issuing a law in a new parliament that sets a retirement age for the head of the prestigious Sunni institution.

Borhami further explained that he would not have been able to pass an interpretation of sharia (Islamic law) had he not coupled it with rendering the Grand Imam immune from attempts to unseat him.

According to Borhami, article 219 of the draft constitution which rendered El-Tayeb's position immune also included a stricter definition of the "principles of sharia" which was named in article 2 of the draft as the main source of legislation.

Article 219 states that "the principles of Islamic sharia include general evidence, foundational rules, rules of jurisprudence, and credible sources accepted in Sunni doctrines and by the larger community."

"The article, which puts sharia above all in society, was accepted by the Christians in the assembly because they are unfamiliar with our religious terminology," Borhami gloated to an excited audience in the video.

Borahmi said he will also be seeking for the next Grand Imam after El-Tayeb to be chosen by Al-Azhar sheikhs, and not appointed by the president.

El-Tayeb has been criticised by many Islamic groups for his loyalty to ousted president Hosni Mubarak
...The former President-for-Life of Egypt, dumped by popular demand in early 2011...
, who appointed him to the position of Grand Imam.

Borhami explained at the conference, which was organised to rally Salafist support for the draft constitution, that he was also able as a Constituent Assembly member to restrict human rights
...which are usually entirely different from personal liberty...
and freedoms.

The one-time surgeon turned preacher said Islamists in the assembly maneuvered to limit personal and political freedoms by adding phrases which insist that freedoms must not violate "societal values and the state's basic tenets."

Borhami attempted to calm critics among Salafists
...Salafists are ostentatiously devout Moslems who figure the ostentation of their piety gives them the right to tell others how to do it and to kill those who don't listen to them...
who charge the draft document is weak on achieving their goal of implementing sharia by saying penalties in the new constitution will not only be dictated by laws but also by a constitution governed in its totality by sharia.

Article 76 states that "there shall be no crime or penalty except in accordance with the law or a constitutional article," Borhami assured his listeners.

Yasser Borhami is known as an influential Salafist preacher and one of the founders of the Salafist Call in Egypt, a Salafist movement that spawned Al-Nour Party in 2011.

Borhami is often hailed as a prominent scholar of strict, literalist Islam. He is also known for having made several controversial statements in the past, including one in which he reiterated his stance on Jews and Christians, describing both as infidels.

El-Tayeb will be holding a meeting with Al-Azhar Constituent Assembly members and several of his consultants to formulate a response to the statements made by Borhami, after which he will be holding a presser.

#1: Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayeb is about 66.

What really Salafists suspicious is that El-Tayeb has a Ph D from the Sorbonne. Who knows what deconstructionist memes lie dormant in his noggin.
Posted by: lord garth|| 2012-12-25 00:09 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 428 words Link to article
[Dawn] "They are scared of our culture, of our little girls, of our society. We are not scared of them. Please keep doing the good work that you've been doing," said President Asif Ali Ten Percent Zardari
... husband of the late Benazir Bhutto, who has been singularly lacking in curiosity about who done her in ...
during his brief speech while launching 'Tale of the tile: the ceramic traditions of Pakistain', a book co-authored by Abdul Hamid Akhund and Nasreen Askari at the Mohatta Palace Museum on Monday.

The president began his address going down memory lane. He said: "While coming here I was telling my MS about these streets. These are the streets that I used to bicycle around."

He said his mother was a conservative woman and would not allow him to go out. But he would sneak out and ride his bicycle from Garden Road to places such as Clifton. Referencing from the book, he said that in a manner the book was 'a tale of Bloody Karachi
...formerly the capital of Pakistain, now merely its most important port and financial center. It may be the largest city in the world, with a population of 18 million, most of whom hate each other and many of whom are armed and dangerous...
Then the president switched to the current, pressing issue and said people found it difficult to accept what had crept into our society, especially among our youth. He remarked that they, alluding to myrmidon elements, did not like our culture, our values and did not like us talking about God.

"I see God everywhere, in everything that moves. Whereas they think God is theirs alone." He termed it a mindset and iterated that he was determined to fight and win against them. He said they were scared of our culture, our little girls, but we were not scared of anything.

He urged Abdul Hamid Akhund, Nasreen Askari and Hameed Haroon to keep doing the good work that they were doing from the Mohatta Palace Museum platform.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 1798 words Link to article
[Dawn] Four people, including three traders, were bumped off in 'sectarian' attacks in two different parts of the city on Monday, police said.

The police added that the three traders, including two brothers, were rubbed out in two successive 'sectarian' attacks in Nazimabad No 2 on Monday morning.

The police added that four gunnies riding two cycles of violence fired at a department store owner, Qamar Hussain, 45, and his elder brother, Hasnain Hussain, 50, who ran a neighbouring vegetables shop, before killing yet another trader, Hussain Ali, at his paper shop in the next street printing press market.

The drive-by shootings were carried out in Nazimabad No 2 near Inquiry Office within the remit of the Gulbahar cop shoppe.
The victims were rushed to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, where Hussain Ali, 40, was pronounced dead on arrival, while the maimed brothers died during treatment, the police said.

Police Sherlocks later collected seven spent bullet casings of 9mm pistol from the crime-scenes.

Both the brothers were area residents, the police Sherlocks said, adding that Hasnain had three children and Qamar was father of a child.

Hussain was also a resident of Nazimabad and father of five, the police said.

Following the medico-legal formalities, the bodies of the brothers were taken to the Imambargah Shah-e-Karbala in Rizvia Society, while the body of Hussain was shifted to the Mehfil-e-Khurasan where his funeral was held before his burial in the Mewashah graveyard.

The funeral of Hasnain and Qamar will be held on Tuesday after the arrival of their elder brother from Dubai, family members told Dawn.

Following the killings, tension gripped Nazimabad and Rizvia Society where shops and markets were closed, as protesters placed burning tyres on Golimar Road to suspend traffic.

A heavy police contingent was deployed in the area to tackle the situation.

DIG (west) Javed Odho said that the killings seemed to have sectarian motive. He added that 9mm pistol was used in all the three killings, he said. For the past couple of days, the pace of sectarian killings had picked up, he remarked.

Central deputy secretary general of the Majlis Wehdat-e-Mohammedaneen Maulana Amin Shaheedi condemned what he described as 'serial assassination' of Shias in Bloody Karachi
...formerly the capital of Pakistain, now merely its most important port and financial center. It may be the largest city in the world, with a population of 18 million, most of whom hate each other and many of whom are armed and dangerous...
and demanded that President Asif Ali Ten Percent Zardari
... husband of the late Benazir Bhutto, who has been singularly lacking in curiosity about who done her in ...
, Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf, Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry and army chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani
... four star general, current Chief of Army Staff of the Mighty Pak Army. Kayani is the former Director General of ISI...
take immediate notice of the 'Shia genocide' in Bloody Karachi.

In a statement, he said more than five Shias were bumped off by gunnies of banned outfits over the past 36 hours in Bloody Karachi but the government and law-enforcement agencies had failed to arrest a single terrorist involved in the killings.

Prayer leader killed

Later during the day, a prayer leader was killed in another sectarian attack, this time in North Bloody Karachi, police said.

Mufti Muavia, son of Abdul Mateen, was bumped off as he was about to enter Sadequain mosque at Anda Morr within the remit of the Sir Syed cop shoppe, the police added.

The maimed Mufti was rushed to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital from where he was referred to the Liaquat National Hospital. He died during treatment on Monday night, the police added.

A front man for the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat confirmed the death of Mufti Muavia during treatment at the hospital.

His funeral was held in Madni Masjid, Sector 11-C, North Bloody Karachi.

The police described the killing as a sectarian attack. "Apparently the attack somewhat seemed a reaction to the Nazimabad killings," DIG west Javed Odho observed.

Student killed

A private medical university student was rubbed out during what police suspect was a botched kidnapping bid on the Northern Bypass on Monday morning.

Resident of DHA Khadda Market, 28-year-old Zohaib Ahmed was driving a car (ABX-849) when he was rubbed out within the remit of the Sohrab Goth cop shoppe, officials said.

Sohrab Goth DSP Qamar Ahmed the young man was student of third year MBBS student of Baqai Medical University. The bullet pierced through his shoulder and hit his neck casing his death, the officer said, adding that the victim rammed into the rocks after being shot at.

The police shifted the body to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre for medico-legal formalities.

As a matter of routine, he used to pick up some friends from Sohrab Goth while heading to the university every morning, but it was not clear as to why he took a different route on Monday, said the DSP.

"The victim was not deprived of cash, an expensive cellphone and the car, indicating that it was not a snatching attempt," he added.

"It seems that the suspects wanted to kidnap the young man, but he attempted to speed away and the suspects opened fire," the officer conjectured.

Man killed, policeman maimed

A man was rubbed out and a policeman was maimed in an attack at a tea restaurant in the Ayub Goth area of Sohrab Goth, officials said.

Abdul Jabbar Barfat, 65, was killed and policeman Mohammad Rafique was maimed in the drive-by shooting, the police said.
They said the dear departed was father of four.

Man rubbed out in Saddar

A young man was rubbed out in the Preedy area late Monday night, police said.

The victim was identified as Mazhar, 23, son of Mohammad Zaheer, a resident of Rexer Lines, the police added.

Preedy DSP Zamir Abbasi said: "The victim was rubbed out in a street near Rafique Plaza, off the M.A. Jinnah Road. It seems that he had been kidnapped before being brought there and rubbed out," he said.

The victim sustained a single bullet in the head, causing his instant death, the police said.

A spent bullet casing of 9mm pistol was found from the scene, the police said.

They later shifted the body to the Civil Hospital Bloody Karachi for medico-legal formalities.

Any political affiliation of the victim was not clear immediately, said DSP Abbasi.

Young man rubbed out

A construction company employee was rubbed out within the remit of the Bilal Colony cop shoppe in New Bloody Karachi on Monday.

Nadeem Khursheed, 35, sustained a single bullet in the head, the police said.

They shifted the body to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital for medico-legal formalities.

Bodies found

The bodies of two young men were found in a garbage dump in the marshy area near Machhar Colony, police said.

Both the men, identified as Saeed Alam, 20 and Amir Hussain, 24, had been shot at multiple times, the police added.

The police said the two men had criminal background. They had been tossed in the clink
Book 'im, Mahmoud!
in murder and armed robbery cases, the police added.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 477 words Link to article
[Dawn] Death of four more children believed to have been caused by measles within the Salehpat taluka of Sukkur district alone on Monday alarmed authorities who ordered top district officials to rush to the area and ascertain the situation.

Amid constant reports of measles spreading fast in the districts of Larkana, Sukkur, Kandhkot-Kashmore and Jacobabad, media reports suggested that as many as 22 children have already died of the disease within the past five weeks.

On Monday, Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Syed Khursheed Shah, who belongs to Sukkur district, expressed his resentment over what he regarded as lethargy of the health officials concerned over the growing threat from the disease and the plight of the affected population. He rejected Sukkur District Health Officer Jai Ramdas's contention that most of the deaths occurred due to the cold weather.

The minister's reaction came after reports from the Salehpat area confirmed that four children aged between three to six years died of measles on Monday morning.

The victims were identified as Rajab Ali Bhambhro, Shahmir Zado Shambani, Latif Ali Shambani and Rahib Ali Shambani -- whose families appeared to be residents of Gugro village of Salehpat taluka.

Two more children, whose identities could not be ascertained immediately, reportedly died of measles in the villages of Mohammad Ramzan Bhambhro and Misri Fakir. The officials concerned were yet to confirm the two deaths.

The district authorities on Monday confirmed that 19 deaths from measles were reported from the Salehpat area and its surrounding villages over the past five weeks amid fear of the situation taking the shape of an outbreak.

Sukkur Deputy Commissioner Bilal Ahmed Memon told Dawn that the data collected from the area verified the claim but he did not agree that four more children died from the disease on Monday.

Independent sources put the measles corpse count in the area within the period at 22.

The deputy commissioner said the process of collecting data from relevant departments, including the police, was under way, adding that conclusions about the gravity of the situation could be drawn only when verified information from the entire district were available.

He said that Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah had recently expressed his displeasure over lethargy on the part of the health officials concerned despite the fact that the media was constantly carrying reports about the aggravating situation. He said that chief minister was concerned over the department's failure to take prompt measures towards preventing spread of the disease.

Mr Memon said that he along with a vaccination team would visit the affected villages on Tuesday to ascertain the situation and make necessary arrangements for providing medical treatment to the children suffering from measles. A door-to-door vaccination drive against measles was also planned, he added.

#1: Sucker district, that's the whole area.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 00:24 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 675 words Link to article
[Dawn] The number of Frontier Constabulary personnel, manning checkposts in the suburban areas of 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.
, has been increased to counter terrorists' attacks, according to sources.

Fasih Khan, an official at Sarband cop shoppe, said that security was further beefed up and coppers on leave were called back on emergency basis after attacks on the airbase and senior minister Bashir Ahmed Bilour.

"We have all kinds of light and heavy weapons to counter the attacks. Movement of suspected elements is thoroughly checked on the link roads and pathways," he claimed.

The official said that bully boyz used to fire rockets at nighttime but they could not come close to the checkposts, manned by police and FC.

A police source said that two bully boyz were killed in an attack on Zakhail police post located close to Frontier Region of Peshawar. The body of a terrorist was in the custody of police, he added.

a person who gets all wrapped up in himself makes a mighty small package...
another official of rural circle, narrating the ordeal of FC and coppers deployed in the sensitive area, said that most of the personnel had been given old model rifles that could fire only 10 rounds. He said that out of 26 FC personnel only 11 were armed with Kalashnikovs.

The number of police deployed at Zakhail police post, he said, was also low. He said that they had a single heavy gun while bully boyz possessed all kinds of heavy arms and ammunitions that always caused losses of lives and damage to the police posts in the past.

Appreciating the role of local anti-Taliban volunteers, he said that following information about the attack on the post on Friday night, members of Adezai Qaumi Lashkar reached the spot and extended full support to the law enforcers.

The official said that it was result of their joint efforts that bully boyz suffered casualties. The body of a bad turban was found after the clash.

He said that the killed bad turban was identified as Feroz Khan, a resident of Adezai village. The body was shifted to Matani cop shoppe but his relatives avoided receiving it for burial, the official said and added that it was later taken to the local mortuary.

SP Mohammad Javaed Khan, when contacted, claimed that police were well armed and fully alert to encounter the attacks. He said the number of FC personnel was doubled and their movement was increased to keep an eye on suspected elements in the border area.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 169 words Link to article
[Dawn] An Indian policeman who was injured in festivities during a protest over a gang-rape in New Delhi died on Tuesday, a police front man said.

The 47-year-old police constable, Subash Tomar, was deployed at the India Gate monument on Sunday to control the protests. He was beaten up by a mob and rushed to hospital by the police.

"The protesters pelted stones at Tomar, he was unconscious for two days and today he died," New Delhi police front man Rajan Bhagat told AFP.

More than 50 coppers were maimed in Sunday's violence as police struggled to quell increasing outrage over sex crimes following the gang-rape of a student.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 328 words Link to article
[Dawn] Two personnel of the Frontier Corps and two of the Balochistan
...the Pak province bordering Kandahar and Uruzgun provinces in Afghanistan and Sistan Baluchistan in Iran. Its native Baloch propulation is being displaced by Pashtuns and Punjabis and they aren't happy about it...
Constabulary and a NATO
...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. A collection of multinational and multilingual and multicultural armed forces, all of differing capabilities, working toward a common goal by pulling in different directions...
container driver were killed in acts of terror in Quetta, Mashkey and Hub town on Monday.

Official sources said the FC personnel were killed when they were attacked by unknown hard boyz while they were coming out of the FC Fort in Mashkey. The two victims were identified as soldiers Saifullah and Zhazad.

Four FC personnel were seriously injured in Sakran area of Hub when a bomb strapped to a cycle of violence went kaboom!.

Two Balochistan Constabulary personnel were killed and another was injured when their convoy was ambushed on Eastern Bypass in Quetta.

Bodies of the two were taken to Civil Hospital in Quetta and they were identified as Abdul Haleem and Mohammad Arshad. Hospital sources said that condition of injured Yar Muhammad was critical. A driver of a NATO supply container, Mohammad Qasim, was killed in Sariab locality.--

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 671 words Link to article
[Dawn] Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
... formerly NWFP, still Terrorism Central...
Chief Minister Ameer Haider Khan Hoti called upon the politicianship and the military on Monday to immediately put their heads together to find a permanent solution to the problem of militancy.

"Time has come that the military and politicianship take a quick decision and guide the nation. Otherwise, it will be criminal negligence," he told politicians in the provincial assembly amid a sombre mood over the liquidation of Senior Minister Bashir Ahmad Bilour in a suicide kaboom on Saturday.

When the assembly's proceedings began, Chief Minister Hoti, along with ministers and politicians, placed a wreath of red and white roses in the chair of the slain ANP leader. Mr Bilour's portrait, red cap and shawl were put on his seat and politicians lit candles on his desk as a mark of respect and to pay tribute to their colleague. Women members wore black shawls and men black armbands.

Bashir Bilour, who had been elected five times as an MPA, was the third politician of the sitting assembly to have fallen to terrorism.

Earlier, Awami National Party's MPAs Alamzaib Khan and Shamsher Khan, from 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.
and Swat, had died in kabooms.

Sikandar Khan Sherpao, an MPA, and Jails Minister Mian Nisar Gul survived bomb and suicide attacks.

The chief minister said a delay in taking a decision would amount to a "betrayal of the deaders".

"The enemy will be weakened if we take a bold decision. Otherwise, our enemy will gain more strength and power," he said.

He also said that some people had a misconception that the situation would improve once NATO
...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. It's headquartered in Belgium. That sez it all....
forces pulled out of Afghanistan.

"The people who have started terrorism and killing innocent people have already vowed to take over Pakistain after coming to power in Afghanistan," he said, adding that the nation had two choices: to fight them or leave the ground open for them.

He said that if forces of Evil continued killing leaders and candidates of political parties one by one, the general election would become doubtful.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 3 Comments 194 words Link to article
[An Nahar] Iraq and Jordan agreed on Monday to extend an oil pipeline to the Red Sea city of Aqaba for the export of Iraqi crude, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said after a fleeting visit to Amman.

"It was agreed to extend an oil pipeline across Jordan to Aqaba to export Iraqi oil and satisfy Jordan's crude requirements," the Iraqi premier told journalists, saying this would "end the transportation of oil using tankers."

The new pipeline would be capable of pumping one million barrels per day, Jordan's official news agency Petra said.

Jordanian Prime Minister Abdullah al-Nsur, who met with Maliki, praised the deal, saying "we need each other, and Jordan is important for Iraq's trade and the export of its oil."

Iraq also agreed to "bring into effect a 2009 agreement to establish a free trade zone between the two countries," and "to increase the capacity of (its) gas pipeline" "to secure Jordan's Iraqi natural gas needs," according to Petra.

Jordan relies on imports for 95 percent of its energy needs. A rise in fuel prices by up to 53 percent in November prompted violent protests in which three people were killed and more than 70 injured.

#1: "end the transportation of oil using tankers."

unstated words, 'from the Persian Gulf'
Posted by: lord garth|| 2012-12-25 09:33 ||Top

#2: from the arabian gulf...screw iran
Posted by: dan|| 2012-12-25 21:52 ||Top

#3: The USN uses 'Persian Gulf'. Longstanding tradition, and the re-name is petty political BS.
Posted by: Pappy|| 2012-12-25 23:26 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 6 Comments 213 words Link to article
[An Nahar] North Korea on Monday slammed a display of Christmas lights staged by a South Korean church group near the tense border as an "unacceptable provocation".
Of course. It demonstrates graphically that even a mere private association can afford the cost of such blatant wastefullness.
The giant display -- featuring thousands of glittering bulbs on a tree-shaped steel tower -- was put up Saturday on a military-controlled hill at Gimpo west of Seoul.

The lights, which can be seen several kilometers away in the impoverished North which suffers chronic power shortages, will remain switched on until early January.

The display is "an undisguised challenge to us and an unacceptable provocation", the North's official Korean Central News Agency said.

It warned that staging "psychological warfare" along the border would be a "rash act" that could ignite war on the peninsula.

Before the South's "Sunshine Policy" of engagement with North Korea was launched in 1998, the seasonal lighting displays were common.

Pyongyang repeatedly condemned them as "psychological warfare" by its capitalist neighbor aimed at spreading Christianity in the isolated communist state.

#1: Anything and Every thing "Provokes" them.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 00:28 ||Top

#2: Wait'll they see smell the giant roast goose.
Posted by: Shipman|| 2012-12-25 04:00 ||Top

#3: "I'm not touching you... I'm not touching yooouuuu..."
Posted by: Pappy|| 2012-12-25 11:03 ||Top

#4: Merry Christmas, Pudgy!
Posted by: Abu Uluque|| 2012-12-25 14:23 ||Top

#5: It's easy to despise that which you cannot have.
Posted by: gorb|| 2012-12-25 15:03 ||Top

#6: Iff Pudge hates Santa Cookies, it'll be war once he sees the Marshmallow Rice Krispies.
Posted by: JosephMendiola|| 2012-12-25 19:40 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 200 words Link to article
[An Nahar] "Pirates armed with guns attacked, boarded an offshore supply vessel ... and kidnapped four crew members," the IMB's Piracy Reporting Center said of the Sunday attack.

There were "no injuries to crew members and (the) vessel continued passage to a safe port," it said.

The attack occurred some 40 nautical miles off of Nigeria's Bayelsa state, the IMB said. It provided no further details on the nationality of the crew or the ship.

Such kidnappings occur regularly off Nigeria's oil-producing Niger Delta region, with hostages typically released after payment of a ransom.

A 2009 amnesty deal led to a sharp drop in unrest in the region, but criminality remains widespread.

On December 17, four workers from South Korea's Hyundai Heavy Industries and a Nigerian were kidnapped by gunnies while working at a construction site in Bayelsa. The five were freed unharmed on Friday night.

On the same day, well armed pirates stormed and ransacked an oil tanker off the Niger Delta and kidnapped five Indian crew members.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 246 words Link to article
[An Nahar] Rebels in Sudan's troubled Darfur region on Monday reported the rare seizure of a town from government control after fighting that resulted in arrests and casualties.

The Sudan Liberation Army's (SLA's) Abdelwahid Nur faction took control of Golo, a major town in the Jebel Marra area, at about mid-day on Monday after fighting when government militia tried to attack a rebel position, the group's front man Ibrahim Al-Hillu told Agence La Belle France Presse.

Hillu said the rebels seized heavy machine guns, mortars, vehicles and other military equipment in the town and had taken prisoners. There were also casualties but he had no details.

Sudan's army front man could not be reached for comment.

The fertile and mountainous Jebel Marra area is home to the non-Arab Fur people who gave their name to Darfur (Land of the Fur), and who are represented by Nur's faction.

The group has several hundred combatants and a "sphere of influence" limited to the Jebel Marra region, which has been regularly targeted by government military operations and air attacks, according to the Small Arms Survey, a Swiss-based independent research project.

In May, Nur's faction along with the SLA-Minni Minnawi group briefly took control of the southern Darfur town of Girayda from government forces.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 475 words Link to article
[An Nahar] A "terrorist" group attacked the rebel-held town of Halfaya in central Syria killing women and kiddies, news agency SANA said on Monday, rebuffing claims the deaths were a result of a regime air strike.

The opposition Syrian National Coalition meanwhile blamed the "criminal regime" of Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Scourge of Qusayr...
for committing what it described as a "crime against humanity" in the town.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said more than 60 people were killed and at least 50 maimed in the town on Sunday, accusing aerial forces of bombing a local bakery.

SANA, the official news agency, however gave a vastly different account, citing residents of the town located in the central province of Hama.

"An armed terrorist group attacked the town of Halfaya committing crimes against the population, killing many women and kiddies," it said.

The report added that the Syrian army intervened during the assault and "killed and maimed many terrorists", a term officials and state media use to refer to rebels fighting to oust the Damascus
...Capital of the last overtly fascist regime in the world...

"Terrorists then shot video images to accuse the Syrian army when the international envoy Lakhdar Brahimi arrived in Syria," the agency said.

Video footage posted online by activists showed a bombed one-story block and a crater in the road.

Bloodied bodies lay on the road, while others could be seen in the rubble. Men carried victims out on their backs, among them at least one woman. The video could not immediately be verified.

The opposition National Coalition, which is recognized by dozens of countries and organizations as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people, blamed Assad's regime for the "massacre" in Halfaya, saying it "targeted children, women and men who went out to get their scarce daily bread ration."

"The Syrian Coalition is taking action on several tracks considering all possible measures to prosecute those criminals who were involved in the Halfaya massacre on December 23, 2012 and bring them to justice," it said in a statement.

#1: Ummm, "Their" terrorists?
I note they don't say.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 22:02 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 388 words Link to article
[An Nahar] Two suspected U.S. drone strikes killed six al-Qaeda Islamic fascisti in Yemen on Monday, including a Jordanian, government officials said.

The first "drone strike targeted a vehicle killing two al-Qaeda members -- a Yemeni and a Jordanian" in Manaseh of central Bayda province, a local government official said, requesting anonymity.

A security official identified one of the Islamic fascisti killed as Abdullah Hussein al-Waeli, an al-Qaeda member from Marib province who was wanted after he beat feet from prison two years ago. No details were given on the Jordanian.

Tribal sources said three other Islamic fascisti were maimed in the attack.

Three missiles fired at cycle of violences in Hadramawt province killed four more al-Qaeda bad turbans, a local government official said.

The official, who requested anonymity, said the missiles were fired by "an American drone," and that the attack took place in the center of Shehr, a town east of the bustling provincial capital Mukalla.

Al-Qaeda had declared an Islamic emirate in nearby Radaa earlier this year, shortly before being driven out by tribal militiamen.

Tareq al-Dahab, who led the al-Qaeda gunnies in the January raid on the town, was rubbed out in February.

Dahab was a brother-in-law of slain U.S.-born holy man Anwar al-Awlaqi, who was killed in a suspected US drone strike in September.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 280 words Link to article
[An Nahar] Jihadists overran large parts of an Alawite village in the central Syrian province of Hama on Monday in fighting that killed at least 30 combatants, a monitoring group said.

Alongside other radical Islamist groups, al-Nusra Front seized parts of the village of Maan, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, adding at least 11 rebel fighters and 20 regime troops were killed.

Rebels last week launched an all-out assault on army positions across Hama, home to a patchwork of religious communities, says the Observatory.

While anti-regime sentiment in the province is strong, regime forces had so far suppressed any major signs of insurgency in Hama, which links strategic provinces such as Damascus
...Capital of the last remaining Baathist regime in the world...
, Idlib in the northwest, and Homs in central Syria.

The picturesque provincial capital saw some of the largest protests against Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Lord of the Baath...
at the start of Syria's uprising more than 21 months ago, but the city was overrun by security and military forces in summer 2011.

Al-Nusra Front is listed by the United States as a "terrorist" organization.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 370 words Link to article
[An Nahar] Warplanes carried out several strikes on Monday on rebel-held areas in the Eastern Ghouta region near Damascus
...The place where Pencilneck hangs his brass hat...
, where fresh festivities pitting snuffies and troops erupted, said a monitoring group.

The area east of Damascus is home to some of the rebel Free Syrian Army's fiercest and best organized groups. Several towns in Eastern Ghouta have become key flashpoints in Syria's conflict, as the violence draws ever nearer to the capital.

Analysts say the regime of Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Lord of the Baath...
is trying to secure an eight-kilometer (five-mile) radius around the capital so it can be in a position to negotiate a solution to the nearly two-year conflict.

In Damascus, violent battles raged on Sunday night in the northeastern district of Qaboon and on the road separating the southern Paleostinian camp of Yarmuk from neighboring al-Hajar al-Aswad, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Violent festivities broke out in Yarmuk last week. A tense calm returned on Thursday.

The Observatory also reported fierce army shelling on the central province of Hama, scene of a massacre of some 60 people on Sunday at the entrance to a bakery in the rebel-held town of Halfaya, according to the Observatory.

Shelling was also reported in the central province of Homs and Daraa in the south.

Monday's violence came a day after at least 198 people were killed across the country, just as international peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi arrived in Syria to launch a new bid to resolve the spiraling war.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 290 words Link to article
[An Nahar] The Lebanese lawyer of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali on Monday blasted as "illegal" the auction of the deposed Tunisian dictator's assets and threatened to take the case to the U.N. Human Rights Council.

"The Tunisian authorities have committed an illegal act and we will take this matter to the United Nations
...the Oyster Bay money pit...
Human Rights Council," Akram Azouri told AFP.

"It is a denial by the Tunisian government... (of) the international commitments of Tunisia," he added.

The lawyer said 90 percent of the items up for sale did not belong to Ben Ali or his wife, with the those that did being acquired "legally and legitimately during a quarter of a century in power."

Azouri accused the Islamist-led government of "deforming reality" and "falsifying the facts."

His comments came after the opening on Sunday of an auction, in the chic resort of Gammarth, of luxury items belonging to the former president and 114 of his relatives, from which the cash-strapped government hopes to raise millions of euros (dollars).

Among the items on show are the Ben Ali clan's collection of luxury cars, featuring a Bentley Continental and a Maybach 62, as well as clothing and jewelery acquired by the dictator's notoriously extravagant wife Leila Trabelsi.

Those attending the opening included the agents of rich Gulf collectors, as well as ordinary Tunisians curious to see how the president squandered state funds, and how his family benefited from rampant corruption in the country.

#1: Naah, they stole it fair and square, they can sell it.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 00:25 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 230 words Link to article
[An Nahar] Kuwait's appeals court Monday upheld a life term on two coppers convicted of torturing a citizen to death at a cop shoppe two years ago.

The court also confirmed jailing three officers for 16 years each, a fourth for 15 years and a fifth for two years and ordered their dismissal from the police force.

Two other coppers were each fined 200 dinars ($720), while the remaining 11 defendants were acquitted, including two foreigners who worked at the cop shoppe.

The verdicts can still be appealed before the supreme court.

All 20 defendants were charged with torturing four detainees at the cop shoppe in January 2011. One of the victims, 35-year-old Mohammad Ghazzai al-Mutairi, died of his injuries.

The incident shocked the Kuwaiti public and led to the resignation of former interior minister Sheikh Jaber Khaled Al-Sabah, a member of the ruling family.

A parliamentary investigation panel at the time found that Mutairi had apparently been subjected to severe torture for six days, including three days in a remote desert location.

#1: Some progress, not much.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 00:26 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 507 words Link to article
[An Nahar] Peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi Monday held talks with Syria's president on the "worrying" situation in the country.

"I had the honor to meet the president and as usual we exchanged views on the many steps to be taken in the future," Brahimi told news hounds at his Damascus
...The place where Pencilneck hangs his brass hat...
hotel, a day after he arrived to launch a fresh bid to end the conflict roiling Syria.

The U.N.-Arab League
...an organization of Arabic-speaking states with 22 member countries and four observers. The League tries to achieve Arab consensus on issues, which usually leaves them doing nothing but a bit of grimacing and mustache cursing...
envoy said the Syrian crisis was "always worrying", with more than 44,000 people killed since the uprising against Assad's regime erupted in March last year, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which relies on a network of medics and activists on the ground.

Brahimi expressed hope that "all parties are in favor of a solution that draws Syrian people together."

"Assad expressed his views on the situation and I told him about my meetings with leaders in the region and outside," said the veteran Algerian diplomat who took over his present task from former U.N. chief Kofi Annan
...Ghanaian diplomat who served as the seventh and so far the worst Secretary-General of the UN. Annan and the UN were the co-recipients of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize for something or other that probably sounded good at the time. In December 2004, reports surfaced that Kofi's son Kojo received payments from the Swiss company Cotecna, which had won a lucrative contract under the UN Oil-for-Food Program. Kofi Annan called for an investigation to look into the allegations, which stirred up the expected cesspool but couldn't seem to come up with enough evidence to indict Kofi himself, or even Kojo...

Assad described the meeting as "friendly and constructive," according to state television
... and if you can't believe state television who can you believe?
"The government is committed to ensure the success of all efforts aimed at protecting the illusory sovereignty and independence of the country," Assad said.

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 405 words Link to article
[An Nahar] Russia said on Monday it would be "political suicide" for the government of Syrian Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad
Before going into the family business Pencilneck was an eye doctor...
if it used chemical weapons against the armed opposition.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in an interview released by the English-language state television
... and if you can't believe state television who can you believe?
channel RT that Assad had given Moscow repeated assurances he had no plans to order such an attack.

"I do not believe Syria would use chemical weapons," Lavrov said in comments translated by the channel into English. "It would be a political suicide for the government if it does."

Russia has remained Syria's main ally throughout 21 months of violence that an opposition monitoring group says has claimed more than 44,000 lives.

It scuttled three rounds of U.N. Security Council sanctions against Assad and condemned Washington for recognizing the Syrian opposition as the legitimate voice of the country's citizens.

Moscow's position has frustrated Western attempts to end the bloodshed by forcing Assad from power. Washington has also slammed Moscow's continued military ties with Damascus
...The capital of Iran's Syrian satrapy...

But Russia also remains one of the only nations to remain in constant contact with Assad -- a status the West has urged it to use to pressure the Syrian strongman to cede power.

Lavrov said Moscow checks on every report about the movement of Syrian chemical weapons with Damascus in order to make sure there was no danger of their possible use.

"Every time we hear rumors, or pieces of information come to surface that the Syrians are doing something with the chemical weapons we double-check, we triple-check, we go directly to the government and all the time we get very firm assurances that this is not going to be used under any circumstances," Lavrov said.

Top Posted by trailing wife 12/25/2012  00:00 7 Comments 20 words Link to article
A wise rethink, given the across-the-spectrum revulsion.

#1: A senior administration official told National Journal on Sunday that it was “fair” to say Obama is considering candidates other than Hagel for Defense secretary, in particular Michele Flournoy, who was under secretary of Defense for policy in Obama's first term, and Ashton Carter, the current deputy Defense secretary.

Selecting Hagel was one of two things:

A move right out of the liberal playbook: Show you're willing to 'reach across the aisle', but make sure the candidate was a maverick (I suspect they briefly considered asking McCain, but the White House burned that bridge years ago)

Or -

The two alternates are who the administration actually wants. Probably Flournoy more than Carter. The White House wants to tighten its control over the Pentagon. Flournoy is more the ideological soulmate.
Posted by: Pappy|| 2012-12-25 00:53 ||Top

#2: Nothing wrong with Hagel. He served honorably in Vietnam and was awarded two PH's and the CIB. The 9th Infantry Division was no bunch of FOB queens, and Hagel was right in the middle of the shi* as an enlisted man. He went on to do a lot for military veterans. Quite frankly, I think we wore out the racist, homophobe, uncle Tom, and anti-Semitic labeling long ago. I'm staunchly pro-Israel, but anyone who says anything even moderately negative about the Jewish community is immediately labeled anti-Semitic.
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 04:28 ||Top

#3: Keep fighting boys---while Michele Flournoy becomes SecDef to preside over "transforming" your millitary.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru|| 2012-12-25 06:16 ||Top

#4: Take a look at the economic profile of Hagel's native Nebraska. Kindly note the absence of demographic data.

Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 10:22 ||Top

#5: Besoeker (#4)???????????
Posted by: g(r)omgoru|| 2012-12-25 11:40 ||Top

#6: Let's look on the bright side, at least Hagel probably doesn't believe in Nation-Building in the Middle East.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain|| 2012-12-25 12:28 ||Top

#7: Nothing wrong with Hagel

Oh, he's an equal opportunity sonuvabitch, I'll grant you that.

It's quite an accomplishment to be able to p*ss-off everyone in the Senate except for the janitor.
Posted by: Pappy|| 2012-12-25 23:32 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 440 words Link to article
[Wired] Opposition activists in Syria are claiming that the embattled regime of Bashir al-Assad gassed rebel forces in the battleground city of Homs on Sunday. U.S. officials tell Danger Room that they are skeptical about the rebels' chemical weapon claims, however.

Al Jizz reported that seven people died after inhaling a gas sprayed by government forces in a part of Homs held by the rebel Free Syrian Army. "We don't know what this gas is but medics are saying it's something similar to sarin," rebel Raji Rahmet Rabbou told the Qatar-based news organization.

The "poisonous material" was deployed by government warplanes, Haaretz reported, citing a rebel statement. The Assad regime, meanwhile, is blaming the rebels for the attack.

Al Jizz posted two videos it said were obtained from "a field clinic in the city." The graphic videos appear to depict gasping victims of what could be construed as a nerve agent attack. However,
there's more than one way to stuff a chicken...
the origins and contents of these videos have yet to be verified by other sources.

U.S. officials note that several things about the video are inconsistent with a sarin strike. There are complaints of strong smells; sarin is odorless. There are reports that the victims inhaled large amounts of the chemical; a minuscule of amount of inhaled sarin can be fatal.

"It just doesn't jive with chemical weapons," one U.S. official tells Danger Room.

In fact, the symptoms shown in these videos might have been caused by other chemicals -- possibly chlorine, phosgene, or cyanogen chloride, according to one independent review of the clips. Or we might simply be seeing a severe asthma attack.
Seven people keeled over dead from the same asthma attack?
The specter of chemical warfare has long loomed over the brutal Syrian conflict, which rebels claimed has killed no fewer than 37,000 people. As early as this summer Assad's regime warned it might deploy its 500-ton chemical stockpile. "There was a moment we thought they were going to use it -- especially back in July," a U.S. official told Danger Room. "But we took a second look at the intelligence, and it was less urgent than we thought."

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 8 Comments 283 words Link to article
[Whitehouse Dossier] President B.O. appears to be backing away from his often-stated claim -- a cornerstone of his 2012 campaign -- that "al Qaeda is on the path to defeat."

In a subtle but important shift three days ago during remarks nominating Sen. John F. I was in Vietnam, you know Kerry
Senator-for-Life from Massachussetts, the Senate's current foreign policy expert, filling the vacated wingtips of Joe Biden...
(D-Mass.) to be Secretary of State, Obama revised the assertion, stipulating that "the al Qaeda core is on the path to defeat."

The addition of one word to Obama's usual statement may seem a small matter. But the president chooses his words very carefully, particularly in prepared remarks. And the insertion of the word "core" probably represents a major reassessment by the administration of al Qaeda's overall strength and durability, a change in outlook that could have a significant impact on U.S. anti-terrorism policy going forward.

Use of the word "core" implies that while the administration is having success against the al Qaeda leadership, al Qaeda's far-flung affiliates -- like the ones that carried out the Benghazi attack -- are not on the "path to defeat." And therefore in a larger sense, the claim made during the campaign that al Qaeda itself is on the path to defeat is no longer considered true by the White House.

#1: Well, Well, the liar's caught.
Lets see him wriggle out of this one, he will, with the MSN's help.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 00:19 ||Top

#2: Welcome to the new Kremlinology...
Posted by: Pappy|| 2012-12-25 00:59 ||Top

#3: Appears to be a downturn in administration commentary on Libya and Syria as well. Champ must have gotten Vlad's memo.
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 04:09 ||Top

#4: He kept us out of war. A proud donk tradition. Wait till you see what comes next.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble|| 2012-12-25 06:45 ||Top

#5: ..well, he's kept us from winning wars. However, I think the Nobel Peace Prize winner is looking for one somewhere to claim a victory. Real alpha males don't have to prove it. Wannabes need to engage in public displays and rituals to con the audience that they are.
Posted by: P2Kontheroad|| 2012-12-25 09:35 ||Top

#6: One thing for certain, he's well on his way to defeating white, working class America.
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 09:38 ||Top

#7: As he fiddles with words, they gain strength, they gain ground, he is setting the conditions for them to organize and gain more and more capability to fight us.
Posted by: 49 Pan|| 2012-12-25 14:09 ||Top

#8: Once again, MAD MULLAHS > "ISLAM RULES, OR ISLAM IS DESTROYED"! ITM there is no such thing as a "middle/grey area".

As per the US NUC's Report towards Year 2030, I don't see any need or rise of violent pro-Christian + pro-Hindu reactionaism = terror unless its due to Radical Islam winning or prevailing in the GWOT over any + all Non-Islam.
Radical Islam wants the US, Western Govts-Societies to believe their Jihad is focused solely on the Middle East = Muslim World when in reality its a Global Jihad bent on conquering andor dominating the World - BY RADICAL ISLAM'S OWN SCOPE OR CLAIMS, THERE WOULD BE NO NEED FOR VIOLENT NON-ISLAMIC REACTIONISM IFF THE JIHAD CONFINED ITSELF TO THE MIDDLE EAST = MUSLIM WORLD NOW WOULD THERE???
Posted by: JosephMendiola|| 2012-12-25 20:00 ||Top

Top Posted by Fred 12/25/2012  00:00 6 Comments 52 words Link to article
Rare Christmas Snow for Dallas, Oklahoma City, Little Rock
Christmas Day Tornadoes: Southeast Texas to Florida
East Facing Major Post-Christmas Winter Storm
More Northeast Snow Just in Time for Christmas
Go carefully, dear friends, and get home safe.

#1: Not really news, the Weather chanel's got it covered.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 09:37 ||Top

#2: Lots of rain and thunder here in east TX.
Posted by: Skidmark|| 2012-12-25 10:08 ||Top

#3: Looks like the great bulk of the precipitation is passing south of OKC in Texas.

Posted by: badanov||http://www.freefirezone.org|| 2012-12-25 11:41 ||Top

#4: Virginia's supposed to get heavy rain and t'storms tomorrow; snow to pass to our north. (yea!)
Posted by: Barbara|| 2012-12-25 12:02 ||Top

#5: Snowing here in Fort Worth, pretty thick and heavy fat flakes. Starting to stick too.
Posted by: Secret Asian Man|| 2012-12-25 15:25 ||Top

#6: Fizzle in TLH so far, but squall line is not due to form for a few hours.
Posted by: Shipman|| 2012-12-25 18:02 ||Top

Top Posted by lotp 12/25/2012  00:00 3 Comments 306 words Link to article
Yet another 'achievement' of this administration - undoing the rapproachment with India that GWB managed.
Not necessarily -- Russia has always been a big arms supplier to India, and the Indians have always said that whatever relationship they might have with us, they'll continue to do business with Russia, just to keep their options open. Another example is the Akula II-class sub they are 'leasing' from the Russians so as to learn about how to operate a nuclear submarine.
True, but Obama has deliberately dismantled a lot of the groundwork laid by Bush which was, among other things, intended to keep Pakistan and China balanced in the region, including in northern Afghanistan. This administration's disdain for India is similar to, albeit a pale imitation of, their utter dislike for Britain.
India and Russia sewed up defence deals worth around $4 billion on Monday as Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in New Delhi for a brief visit.

The first contract signed was for delivery of 71 Mi-17V 5 helicopters, while another dealt with delivery of 42 technological kits for SU-30 MKI aircraft licenced production.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called Russia a key partner in India's efforts to enhance its defence preparedness. "A number of joint-design, development and production projects are underway. We expressed satisfaction that these projects are progressing well," Singh said.

Calling defence cooperation a major pillar of the India-Russia partnership, the two sides also took note of the progress made in the joint development and production of high-technology military equipment and projects. Both sides also discussed measures to ensure expeditious delivery of aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya to India.

#1: They're leasing a Delta? I recall an Akula SSN being discussed and back in the day they leased a Charlie SSGN. Deltas (I think) are SSBN and they would make the Chinee very unhappy. But who knows?
Posted by: Shipman|| 2012-12-25 04:10 ||Top

#2: Not a Delta, an Akula II. I'll correct the text. Thanks.
Posted by: Steve White|| 2012-12-25 10:52 ||Top

#3: Not that there would be anything wrong with renting the HinJoos a SSBN. And after the aircraft carrier debacle the Russian owe 'em.
Posted by: Shipman|| 2012-12-25 18:04 ||Top

Top Posted by lotp 12/25/2012  00:00 4 Comments 245 words Link to article
Palestinian armed groups in Gaza violated the laws of war during the November 2012 fighting by launching hundreds of rockets toward population centers in Israel.

About 1,500 rockets were fired at Israel between November 14 and 21, the Israel Defense Forces reported. At least 800 struck Israel, including 60 that hit populated areas.

The rocket attacks, including the first from Gaza to strike the Tel Aviv and Jerusalem areas, killed three Israeli civilians, wounded at least 38, several seriously, and destroyed civilian property. Rockets that fell short of their intended targets in Israel apparently killed at least two Palestinians in Gaza and wounded others, Human Rights Watch said.

"Palestinian armed groups made clear in their statements that harming civilians was their aim," said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. "There is simply no legal justification for launching rockets at populated areas.

Human Rights Watch research in Gaza found that armed groups repeatedly fired rockets from densely populated areas, near homes, businesses, and a hotel, unnecessarily placing civilians in the vicinity at grave risk from Israeli counter-fire.

The Palestinian armed groups that are known to have launched rockets at Israel -- Hamas' Izz el-Din al-Qassam Brigades, Islamic Jihad's Saraya al-Quds Brigades, and the Popular Resistance Committee's Nasser Salahaddin Brigades -- at times said that their attacks targeted civilians or they sought to justify the attacks by calling them reprisals for Israeli attacks that killed civilians in Gaza.

#1: Goodness - is it fundraising time again?
Posted by: Pappy|| 2012-12-25 00:15 ||Top

#2: ..appears their usual sources of revenue are drying up with the economic downturn and their usual sockpuppets at Newsweek are no longer answering the phone.
Posted by: P2Kontheroad|| 2012-12-25 09:49 ||Top

#3: Awesomely appropriate graphic. But I suspect it will turn out to be a fake in the end.
Posted by: gorb|| 2012-12-25 14:58 ||Top

#4: Proof positive that miracles do occur!
Posted by: JosephMendiola|| 2012-12-25 23:44 ||Top

Top Posted by lotp 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 323 words Link to article
Getting a bit antsy about Assad, are they?
Amazing -- apparently we did extract a price for putting those Patriots on the Turkish-Syrian border...
Turkey has given approval for Israel to participate in non-military NATO activities in 2013, withdrawing an earlier objection driven by an ongoing dispute between the former regional allies, a Turkish official said on Monday.

Relations between Israel and what was once its only Muslim ally crumbled after Israeli marines stormed the Mavi Marmara aid ship in May 2010 to enforce a naval blockade of the Palestinian-run Gaza Strip and killed nine Turks in clashes with activists on board.

The rift has continued despite US efforts to encourage a rapprochement between the two regional powers whose cooperation it needs to address changes sweeping the Middle East.

Turkey, a NATO member, refused to allow Israel to take part in an alliance summit last May because the Jewish state had not apologized for the 2010 killings and Ankara has objected to any increased cooperation. While not a NATO member, Israel is part of the Mediterranean Dialogue, a NATO outreach program, along with six other non-NATO countries, and had previously participated in summits and training exercises.

Turkey will now agree to Israel taking part in some NATO activities next year but remains opposed to joint military exercises, the official said.

Once close allies, Israel and Turkey, which both border Syria, used to share intelligence information and conduct joint military exercises. But after a UN report into the Mavi Marmara incident released in September last year largely exonerated the Jewish state, Turkey expelled Israel's ambassador and froze military cooperation.

That report was meant to foster a thaw between the countries but ultimately deepened the rift when it concluded Israel had used unreasonable force but that the blockade on Gaza was legal.

Top Posted by lotp 12/25/2012  00:00 2 Comments 131 words Link to article
Just hours after Syrian forces bombed a line of starving residents waiting for bread, reports came out that the government used chemical weapons on the city of Homs, a rebel-held city in Western Syria.

There has been no official confirmation yet, but if these reports are true, it may force the U.S. to intervene.

The U.S. said in August that such a move by the Assad regime would constitute a "Red Line" and shift its military position. Obama amplified the warning again in early December when news of chemical weapons preparation came out of Syria.

While there is no official confirmation, The Times of Israel reports that at least six rebels are dead and 60 injured after opposition forces say "poison gas bombs" were dropped on the town of Homs.

#1: Intervention, Hell NO, let them Kill each other.
Or as the famous line says "A pox on both your Houses".
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 22:14 ||Top

#2: "Could Force US Intervention"


Let the oh-so-superior EUropeans take care of it.

We're busy.
Posted by: Barbara|| 2012-12-25 22:41 ||Top

Top Posted by lotp 12/25/2012  00:00 4 Comments 248 words Link to article
According to the Home Office statistics, officers threatened children with Tasers on 144 occasions in 2010 - compared with 21 times in 2007.
Were these great, hulking eighteen-year old yobs on rampages, or dear little kindergartners just learning to lisp their ABCs? Because I have no problem if the police work to get the attention of the yobs.
They actually fired the weapons during one in five incidents, though on most occasions the youngsters were just targeted with a red laser dot from the gun.

Amnesty International, the human rights group, called for the use of Tasers on children and vulnerable people to be "avoided in all circumstances", over fears they can trigger health problems.

However, Lord Taylor of Holbeach, a Home Office minister, said the guns are only used in violent situations, as he revealed the new figures to Baroness Stern, a crossbench peer, in answer to a question in the House of Lords.

"Taser is only deployed where there is a serious threat of violence and by officers who have been carefully selected and trained in its use," he said.

Police have access to around 12,000 Tasers but there were calls for their use to be greatly extended as officers struggled to cope during the riots of 2011.

Paul Davis, responsible for firearms policy on the Police Federation, said that "most if not all frontline officers" should be given access to Tasers, which he described as "less lethal" devices.

#1: Ah, but no guns.
Kinda tepid "Yoots"? Hmmm.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 00:22 ||Top

#2: Do they twitch and drool more, or less?
Posted by: Skidmark|| 2012-12-25 01:04 ||Top

#3: Issue out some of those old Webley's. A .455 round or two should gain their immediate and undivided attention. Bringing that pistol grip lanyard ring squarely down on the back of a head is also an attention getter.
Posted by: Besoeker|| 2012-12-25 04:36 ||Top

#4: the problem is with people who are wildly emotional. maybe because of personal problems, or because of drugs. i just heard about an incident where CHP officers in CA used a taser 8 times on a women - because she was out of control. but every time she was hit with the taser, she just fought back harder. some people will do that. so you wind up getting an escalation. in the story here, the woman's heart stopped beating after the #8 taser shot and the officers had to revive her. she lived.

the issue of non-lethal weapons is a very tough problem for the police. there is no perfect weapon out there that gets the job done.
Posted by: Raider|| 2012-12-25 13:21 ||Top

Top Posted by 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 265 words Link to article
An Afghan policewoman has killed a US civilian aide at the police headquarters in Kabul. It is believed to be the first such insider attack carried out by a woman. She is now in custody.

In a separate incident, at least five local policemen were killed by another officer in northern Afghanistan.

There has been a rise in incidents in which Afghan security forces members have shot dead either foreign personnel or their own colleagues.
Really - what did we do to provoke them? Clearly we haven't apologized enough.
In Monday's attack in Kabul, Afghan officials said the 33-year-old officer, who they named only as Nargis, arrived at the HQ looking for the police chief, the governor of Kabul or the head of the criminal investigation department. When she was unable to locate them she went to the canteen and fired one bullet at the aide. She then fired at officers who tried to arrest her.

Afghan officials said the woman was married to an officer with the criminal investigation department and has three children.

This "green-on-blue" incident in the Kabul police headquarters highlights the concern about whether Afghan and Nato forces can work together after most foreign troops leave the country in the next two years. After 2014 Nato will primarily be on a training mission requiring close working relations and trust between Afghan forces and foreign troops.

Such attacks raise more questions about whether such a close relationship is feasible.
Do tell.

Top Posted by lotp 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 320 words Link to article
Earth First is a terrorist organization, and anything about them is WoT related.
The latest newsletter from the environmentalist group Earth First! Journal contains a curious topic -- assassinations.

In fact, the newsletter conveniently provides the names, addresses and phone numbers of the assassination targets. Naturally, none of this is to be taken seriously, the environmentalists tell us. From the newsletter:

Let us say clearly, this is not a call to undertake assassinations of the elite scum who are pillaging the planet and enslaving the populace -- but not because we think that is a bad idea. And it's also not because we think killing CEOs and lobbyists is negative PR either. In fact, most everyone hates these creeps, and many would applaud their demise. Some would even be so enthusiastic as to make a bid on the assassin's old underwear if given the chance in a government auction, as we found out last year, when the State sold off Ted's personal belongings to further enrich the family of Unabomber victim Thomas J. Mosser, executive of corporate marketing giants Burson Marsteller.

We are not calling for the assassinations of CEOs and lobbyists primarily because those assholes are disposable and replaced with relative ease. Whereas eco-revolutionaries like us are still far and few between, and someone getting popped on that sort of charge it could pull them out of the game for a long time. So instead, until the police state and prison industrial complex is weakened, thus leveling the battlefield a bit more, we propose a campaign of "prank assassinations."

And who are the suggested targets of the Earth First! Journal assassination campaign? Members of the productive class, of course, fill the "Hit List." Aubrey McClendon, CEO of Chesapeake Energy, is listed because his company has developed more efficient methods of developing cheap natural gas.

#1: Freedom of Speech. A two-edged sword at times, but entirely necessary to help expose some for what they are.
Posted by: gorb|| 2012-12-25 15:00 ||Top

Top Posted by Steve White 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 539 words Link to article
The guy looks a little like Spielberg, doesn't he...
ISLAMABAD - Addressing a massive rally in Lahore on Sunday, religious scholar Tahirul Qadri set a three-week deadline for the Pakistan Peoples Party-led coalition government to introduce election reforms or else face a "million-man march" on January 14.
And we all know how well million-man marches work...
"Elections without reforms will be meaningless and people will reject results if they are held under the existing system," Tahirul Qadri, who heads Islamic organisation Minhaj-ul-Quran International (MQI), told a much-publicised "Save the State, not Politics" rally at Minar-e-Pakistan in Lahore.

"I give the government a deadline of three weeks to establish an honest and independent body that will introduce electoral reforms and pave the way for free and fair elections," said Qadri, who returned to the country after a five-year stay in Britain. "If that does not happen by January 10, millions of people will march on Islamabad on January 14 to protest the total collapse of system," he added.
Not that anyone will notice the total collapse...
Qadri said if constitutional requirements were not fulfilled and all stakeholders, not just the two powerful parties (Pakistan Peoples Party and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz), were not taken on board on a new interim setup, he would reject the elections and would not let the lawmakers elected through "unconstitutional elections" sit in Parliament.

Qadri's surprise but impressive entry in Pakistan's political landscape at a crucial period has triggered speculations about his motivation
...he wants to wear the curly-toed slippers, that's plain enough to see...
and possible backing from the establishment though he vehemently denied it. Imran Khan, who himself had launched countrywide political campaign from the same place a year ago, reacted by saying that Qadri had focused on his PTI's agenda.

The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) sent a 50-member delegation led by deputy convener Dr Farooq Sttar to the rally for which Qadri later expressed his thanks on telephone to Altaf Hussain.

If voted to power, Qadri pledged, he would ensure provision of food, shelter, cloths, free and equal education, healthcare facilities, equal employment opportunities, speedy justice, elimination of terrorism, elimination of drone attacks, equal protection of Muslims and non-Muslims and a debt-free country.
But especially the elimination of drone attacks...
Qadri termed Pakistan an "exporter of terrorism"
...though it has a substantial internal consumption, too...
and said the country has been made vulnerable due to the menace.
Only if the Hindoooz and the Americans finally get fed up...
He alleged that the government has failed to maintain peace in Karachi, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Pakistan has become a "laughing stock" the world over.
Only since 1948...

#1: Million March, Can you be a bit more specific, "Million' WHAT, Mice?
Damn sure NOT a "Million" people.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 22:08 ||Top

Top Posted by Steve White 12/25/2012  00:00 0 Comments 329 words Link to article
Could be al-Qaeda or just the usual kidnap for cash, so it's non-WoT related for now.
SANAA - Yemeni security services freed a Filipina nurse two hours after she was kidnapped in Sanaa, state news agency Saba reported on Monday, adding that her abductors have been arrested.

"Security services arrested two outlaws after they kidnapped a Filipina national late on Sunday in the capital Sanaa," Saba quoted an interior ministry spokesman as saying.

The men were arrested within two hours of carrying out the kidnap, the source said, identifying the woman taken hostage as 20-year-old Annie Jones, a nurse at a government hospital in Sanaa. She was released unharmed, according to the spokesman. No details were immediately available on the identities of the kidnappers and the reasons behind the abduction.
I rather imagine someone in the Yemeni 'security forces' knows how to ask these two gents in a way such that they'll talk...
The kidnap was the second of foreigners in Sanaa within a 48-hour period. Security forces are still searching for two Finns and an Austrian who were kidnapped, suspectedly by Al Qaeda-linked gunmen, in the capital on Friday.

A security official had last week warned that Al Qaeda had threatened to kidnap foreigners and to stage bank hold-ups if the authorities fail to release members of an imprisoned network.

Hundreds of people have been abducted in Yemen over the past 15 years, many of them by members of the country's powerful tribes who use them as bargaining chips in disputes with the authorities. Almost all have been freed unharmed.

But Al Qaeda is also held responsible for abductions in Yemen, including that of a Saudi diplomat, Abdallah Al Khalidi, who remains in the hands of the extremist network since his kidnapping on March 28 in Aden.

Top Posted by Steve White 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 295 words Link to article
SEOUL, Dec. 24 -- The U.N. Security Council is unlikely to decide on its response to North Korea's recent rocket launch by the end of this month because of China's apparent reluctance to impose new sanctions against the North, Seoul officials said Monday.

North Korea's Dec. 12 rocket launch drew swift condemnation from the Security Council, which has pledged to take an "appropriate action" against the North for violating U.N. prohibitions that ban Pyongyang from carrying out any long-range missile development.

Discussions at the Security Council on the North Korean launch, however, have made little progress as China, the North's closest ally and a veto-wielding council member, has not responded to calls from Seoul and Washington to order tougher sanctions against Pyongyang, said a senior official at Seoul's foreign ministry.
And they won't, since they approved the launch before-hand...
"Unless there is a significant breakthrough, there will be a high possibility that the discussion at the U.N. Security Council would continue past this month," the official said on the condition of anonymity.

Another ministry official said there is little appetite on the Chinese side to support new Security Council sanctions against North Korea.

"China has not delivered its clear-cut opinion about a U.N. action against North Korea," said the official. "At this stage, it will be difficult to judge what kind of response the Security Council would decide."
Somewhere between a declaration and a sternly-worded declaration, I should think...
China, which has a track record of hindering tougher U.N. measures against North Korea, expressed "regret" over the North's launch, but said any U.N. response to Pyongyang should be "prudent."

#1: Yup, UN (Delay stall and overlook)
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 22:04 ||Top

Top Posted by Steve White 12/25/2012  00:00 1 Comments 296 words Link to article
The military here has found more debris from the North Korean rocket that was launched on Dec. 12, including the fuel tank and O-rings that connect the engine. The fragments were found 85 m under the sea 151 km west of the Byeonsan Peninsula, near where the oxidizing tank was found on Dec. 14.

"Fragments of the engine should make it possible to accurately determine the rocket's actual performance capacity and North Korea's level of technology," a military source said. Based on the capacity of the oxidizing tank the military officials have concluded that the rocket is capable of delivering a 500 to 600 kg warhead over a distance of more than 10,000 km.
Now they just need to miniaturize their nuclear bomb to 500 kg. That's an engineering issue that they, like others, can solve.
The military here also confirmed that the North used red-fuming nitric acid (RFNA) as an oxidizing agent which ensures that the fuel continues to burn at altitudes where oxygen is scarce. RFNA can be stored for extended periods at room temperature but is rarely used in space rockets, since it is highly toxic and can cause sterility in humans.

"RFNA is usually used in missiles," a military official said. "That confirms suspicions that the rocket launch was aimed more at developing missile technology than a space launch vehicle."

A rocket expert with the Agency for Defense Development, who took part in the analysis of the North Korean rocket debris, said examining Iranian rocket and missile documents along with the debris indicates a missile connection between the two countries.
Thus confirming what we've known all along...

#1: the North used red-fuming nitric acid (RFNA) as an oxidizing agent which ensures that the fuel continues to burn at altitudes where oxygen is scarce.
It also pushes efficiently again the ether.
Posted by: Shipman|| 2012-12-25 04:02 ||Top

Top Posted by Steve White 12/25/2012  00:00 4 Comments 362 words Link to article
North Korean leader Pudgy Kim Jong-un on Friday called on scientists in the militarist state to develop more powerful rockets, the North's KCNA news agency reported.

"You should develop and launch a variety of working satellites... and carrier rockets of bigger capacity," Kim was quoted as saying at a banquet in Pyongyang honoring the scientists who built the rocket launched on Dec. 12.
A banquet in North Korea. Suggestions for the menu in comments, please...
Suet Face Kim added that the successful launch of the rocket "was the biggest present we dedicated to our great leader Kim Jong-il and a product of painstaking efforts and heroic struggle of our people and Workers Party."

The rocket launch, which fell on the first anniversary of Kim senior's death, is widely seen as a cover to test intercontinental ballistic missile technology.

But Fat Boy the new leader admitted failing to achieve his goal of turning North Korea into a "powerful and prosperous nation" this year, which marks the centenary of nation founder Kim Il-sung's birth. "We will work even harder to fly the red flag of a powerful and prosperous nation atop the mountain of victory as soon as possible," he said.
And then he'll figure out how to feed his people...
He urged the scientists to do their best to bring that day closer, evidently trying to associate progress in missile development with the "prosperity and happiness" of the people.

The banquet was enlivened by a new performing troupe who earlier this year surprised the world with revealing outfits and donning Disney character costumes. Afterwards Kim and his wife Ri Sol-ju personally saw off the scientists, technicians and workers of the missile development program as they returned to their quarters, KCNA reported.

On Saturday, the Workers Party awarded medals and the title of hero to 101 scientists and technicians who took part in the launch, including Choe Chun-sik, the head of the Second Academy of Natural Science.

#1: Smaller warhead OR bigger missile, same effect.
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 00:30 ||Top

#2: To start, a rocket salad.
Posted by: Grunter|| 2012-12-25 09:13 ||Top

#3: MMMm, stronger, not neccissarily Bigger.
(Can't spell today, sorry)
Posted by: Redneck Jim|| 2012-12-25 09:47 ||Top

#4: Where oh where to begin ...




ARTIC > GLOBAL TIMES = WARNS JAPAN THAT APOLOGIES MAY NOT BE ENUFF TO SATISFY THE CHINESE PEOPLE, e.g. PLA shooting down a JSDF aircraft in tit-for-tat = parallel military action agz Japan.


The hell you say - just discovering it now, are we???

* SAME > CONGRESS MULLS MISSLE DEFENCE BASE ON US EAST COAST, agz NOKOR'S LRBM Threat as authorized widin the recently approved 2013 NDAA.

The Congresscritters want an official study of Pudgy's strategic threat - MEANWHILE, THE WEST COAST IS LEFT UTTERLY DEFENSELESS AGZ NEW ENGLAND'S "WILD TURKEY" JIHAD!

Milyu-u-uhns + Dilyu-u-uhns of delicious Turkeys were deliberately sacrficed in order to lull/fool mainstream America = Amerikka into a false sense of security for when the final + decisive anti-US War of Turkey Liberation, Global Conquest would begin this past Novemebr 2012!

Posted by: JosephMendiola|| 2012-12-26 00:12 ||Top

Top Posted by Steve White 12/25/2012  00:00 4 Comments 404 words Link to article
The first report is from al-Jizz, and they admit up front that they can't confirm it. The second comes from the Khaleej Times which gets it from the usual human rights committee inside Syria. They in turn get it from the same source as al-Jizz. This should be taken with the usual Rantburg-sized grain of salt until independent documentation is found.
This video shows medics in a besieged area in Homs city trying to help a person struggling to breath. They say he inhaled poisonous gas sprayed by regime forces in the rebel-held al-Bayada neighbourhood.

Al Jazeera cannot independently verify the accounts given by them.

Killer gas bombs used in Homs

BEIRUT - Syrian troops have deployed bombs containing a killer gas while fighting rebels in the central city of Homs, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and activists said on Monday.

"Activists in Homs say that six rebels died on Sunday night on the Khaldiyeh-Bayada frontline because they inhaled odourless gas and white smoke," said the Britain-based Observatory, which relies on a network of activists, lawyers and doctors to document Syria's raging conflict. "Gas spread in the area after regime troops threw bombs that gave off white smoke as soon as they hit the walls," said the Observatory, which added that the bombs were deployed during street clashes with the rebels.

"Those who inhaled the gas felt nauseous and suffered severe headaches. Some suffered fits," it added. "These are not chemical weapons, but we do not know whether they are internationally prohibited," Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman said. "Activists say it is the first time they have recorded these effects," he added. "They are not conventional weapons."

The Observatory called on the International Committee of the Red Thingy Cross to urgently send a specialised medical team to Homs, several of whose districts have been besieged by army forces for more than six months.

The Local Coordination Committees also reported the use of "bombs containing gases" in Homs. "These gases lead to muscle relaxation, severe difficulty in breathing and the narrowing of the iris," said the LCC, a grassroots network of peaceful activists.

#1: Sounds like white phosphorus smoke munitions? Historically, the Arabic-speaking media has had difficulty telling smoke screens from a chemical attack.
Posted by: hagmaier@gmail.com|| 2012-12-25 06:58 ||Top

#2: Ok, so they gassed them. Sounds like they lived through it. Would the human rights folks rather HE rounds obliterating the people, they are a conventional weapon as they desire. What we're missing here is radical Islam removing any doubt that their interests are in democracy or anything other than their way. Soon to be in a country near you, I'm afraid...
Posted by: 49 Pan|| 2012-12-25 13:51 ||Top

#3: Give both sides pretty good MOP suits and let them continue debating.
Posted by: Shipman|| 2012-12-25 18:00 ||Top

#4: he got em from Saddam, along with his own stocks. Saddam knew how to use them to kill. I think Pencilneck didn't forget how that worked. If he uses them, the survivors will be the exception
Posted by: Frank G|| 2012-12-25 18:29 ||Top