Next Page: 10000

          

[Stewart Baker] Sandworm and the GRU's global intifada

 Cache   
[Episode 286 of the Cyberlaw Podcast] This episode is a wide-ranging interview with Andy Greenberg, author of Sandworm: A New Era of Cyberwar and the Hunt for the Kremlin's Most Dangerous Hackers. The book contains plenty of original reporting, served up with journalistic flair. It digs deep into some of the most startling and destructive cyberattacks of recent years, from two dangerous attacks on Ukraine's power grid, to the multibillion-dollar NotPetya, and then to a sophisticated but largely failed effort to bring down the Seoul Olympics and pin the blame on North Korea. Apart from sophisticated coding and irresponsibly indiscriminate targeting, all these episodes have one thing in common. They are all the work of Russia's GRU. Andy persuasively sets out the attribution and then asks what kind of corporate culture supports such adventurism – and whether there is a strategic vision behind the GRU's attacks. The interview convinced me at least…
          

North Korean hackers targeted Tamil Nadu Nuclear plant, top nuclear scientists: South Korean intel group

 Cache   
South Korea based Issue Makers Lab has shared “evidence” online claiming that the malware attack on Tamil Nadu’s Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant was done from N Korea which allowed hackers to contact anyone in India’s nuclear energy sector. As per IML, Pyongyang is interested in the thorium-based nuclear power in which India is a world leader.
          

Comment on Trump’s Ambassador and donor confirms quid pro quo by theoldbloke

 Cache   
So Trump gets impeached and fired. Bingo, new world recession.!!!!! New guy lets China walk all over USA to stop trade war. North Korea, goes back to its old habits. AND US Troops start going on overseas duty The borders are opened for anyone to go to America. Has anyone really thought thru the impact of what might happen if Trump is impeached. So my guess is that the Senate will huff and puff but not impeach. The House will drag out the impeachment thing in an attempt to smear Trump (ie a PR exercise) to help whoever the democratic candidate is.
          

Defending the Perimeter Isn’t Enough on Election Hacking

 Cache   

Defending the Perimeter Isn’t Enough on Election Hacking(Bloomberg Opinion) -- The U.S. is now just a year from the 2020 presidential election. In 2016, we saw foreign interests influence the outcome of a presidential race when Russian hackers infiltrated the computer networks of officials in both parties, and then selectively disseminated the emails of Democrats. Is the nation in better shape to counter such threats this time around?It doesn’t look like it.For example, Microsoft recently reported an attack by Iranian hackers on the emails of current and former U.S. government officials, journalists covering political campaigns, and accounts associated with a presidential campaign. There is reason to believe that the attack, which consisted of more than 2,700 attempts on targeted email accounts, was backed by the Iranian government.According to security researchers and intelligence officials, hackers from Russia and North Korea have also begun targeting organizations that work closely with 2020 presidential candidates.Foreign enemies continue to see U.S. elections as an opportunity to subvert the will of the American people and exert control over our governance at the highest level. This most recent Iranian attack is a reminder that both political organizations and private enterprises face significant cybersecurity risks.Unfortunately, the legacy electoral systems most voters and organizations rely on do not offer sufficient protection in the modern digital landscape. When facing nation-state adversaries with billions in funding and information resources to rival the U.S. National Security Agency, Americans have to think beyond the popular two-factor authentication protocols. We need to protect not only the voting systems themselves, but the email, file-sharing and other communication systems of ancillary campaign groups, local officials and plenty more.What can we do to defend ourselves better? In my military and cyber experience, the operating principle is that the sophisticated attacker will eventually find a way through any perimeter defense. As supreme allied commander of NATO in the late 2000s, I pushed to strengthen the alliance’s nascent Cyber Defense Center in Tallinn, Estonia — but saw firsthand how easily Russian hackers penetrated our digital perimeter.Protections must be designed so that even if the attacker succeeds in getting to the target, the target remains safe. To do so, we need to think in terms of four core principles for secure communication systems that will be resilient to the inevitable breach.First, systems must employ end-to-end encryption. (Disclosure: I serve on the board of an information-security firm, Preveil Llc.) If we assume that attackers will be able to exploit vulnerabilities in server software or the defense mechanisms that guard it, then the only way to keep information secure is to make sure that it’s never exposed, even while on the server. With end-to-end encryption, data is only accessible to the sender and the recipient — it isn’t accessible en route to the server or on the server. Even if the server is compromised, the data is not. Think of this as the difference between working in an Ebola environment in a body suit, which will eventually weaken at the seams, and being vaccinated against the disease. The perimeter defense is far from worthless, but the vaccine — the internal protection — is vastly better. A second concern is the vulnerability of anything in the system that becomes a juicy target. While end-to-end encryption eliminates the server as a single entity that can be compromised, if the system has administrators with global access, a high-yield single target for attackers remains. To solve this problem, access to large amounts of sensitive user data should be granted only after being approved by several trusted individuals. Similar to the systems used for nuclear-launch codes, encryption cryptography can break up individual user keys into fragments that are distributed among multiple people. Therefore, administrative access to users’ accounts is achieved only when all key shards are present, so there is no single administrator who attackers can compromise to gain access.Third, it’s time to do away with passwords. According to the report of the 2019 Verizon data breach investigations, 80% of hacking-related breaches involve compromised and weak credentials. Rather than depending on fallible passwords, secure communication systems should now grant account access using a private encryption key. A 256-bit encryption key has a lot of different possible combinations of characters — nearly 10 to the 78th power, the same as the number of atoms in the universe — and is not crackable with existing computational power. Because the key is stored only on the user’s physical device, remote access isn’t possible.Finally, it is important to protect the most sensitive communications from socially engineered phishing and spoofing attacks. Traditional digital communications provide an opening for impostors to trick users into clicking on dangerous links or leaking information. When only known users are able to communicate with each other about an organization’s most confidential information, that risk of “lookalike” accounts is eliminated. The strongest security systems don’t depend on users to be perfect, or to always exercise good judgment. They make sure that data is safe even when humans are flawed. Getting at this “insider threat” is crucial.Security is a serious matter for organizations of all types, not just political parties during an election season. Organizations should rethink their security preparedness with a deeper understanding of the adversaries’ capabilities. They need to make the shift to secure systems modeled around these four core principles — including adopting ready-to-use encrypted communications systems for email and file-sharing.Between now and Nov. 3, 2020, there should be few higher priorities than improving security to stop hackers and foreign powers from threatening American democracy itself.To contact the author of this story: James Stavridis at jstavridis@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Tobin Harshaw at tharshaw@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.James Stavridis is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist. He is a retired U.S. Navy admiral and former supreme allied commander of NATO, and dean emeritus of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He is also an operating executive consultant at the Carlyle Group and chairs the board of counselors at McLarty Associates.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

Understanding North Korea: Foreign Relations of North Korea in 2000

 Cache   
As it approached the new century, North Korea was seeking its bearings internationally amidst the isolation that followed the collapse of the socialist camp and near-withdrawal from the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Pyongyang tried to restore relations with old partners such as Moscow, as well as reaching out to smaller states, often via the Non-Aligned Movement. […]
          

UN Security Council Sanctions against North Korea Responsible for Deaths of 3,193 Children Under Age 5 in 2018 Alone!

 Cache   

On Monday, October 28, a brilliant panel discussion revealing the atrocities resulting from the UN Security Council sanctions (in particular, Resolution 2397) forced upon the DPRK was held at 777 United Nations Plaza.  This panel discussion should have been held

The post UN Security Council Sanctions against North Korea Responsible for Deaths of 3,193 Children Under Age 5 in 2018 Alone! appeared first on Global Research.


          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

Maritime Interdiction of North Korean Ships under UN Sanctions

 Cache   

          

Comment on ABC News Doing Damage Control Over Leaked Video by Hal Schmidt

 Cache   
Twice a day we get reports and examples of the right wing media/blogstream/twitter network which is fed by TeamTrump, its Russian robot corps and the rest of the Alt-Right trying to defame EVERYTHING about the "mainstream" media. There are mistakes made by mainstream media and even some bias. But there is nowhere near the amount of distortion and outright lies which begin from the White House and work their way down thru "anti-social media " of all types. "Alternative" media ..Joseph Goebbels was the father of that with his "Big Lie" theory that propelled Hitler into power. Without mainstream, privately held media we are just like Russia, Communist China, North Korea, and any other dictatorship. "Fake News" is the cry which Pres. Carrot-Top hopes will lead us to his very own dictatorship. And the day American media caves is the day America dies.
          

Symbolic Infrastructure

 Cache   

The new publication 'Model City Pyongyang' is a photographic journey through the architecture of North Korea’s ‘model’ utopia.

The post Symbolic Infrastructure appeared first on Aesthetica Magazine.


          

North Korea says chance of talks with US ‘narrowing’

 Cache   
The possibility of talks between nuclear-armed North Korea and Washington is “narrowing,” Pyongyang said on Tuesday after the US State Department reaffirmed its designation as a state sponsor of terrorism.
          

Hyun Bin And Son Ye-jin Crash Landing On You Teaser Poster

 Cache   
tvN's upcoming drama "Crash Landing On You" has released its first teaser poster. The series tells the story of a conglomerate heir Yoon Se-ru (Son Ye-jin) who accidentally crashed on North Korea. There she meets Lee Jung-hyuk (Hyun Bin), a North Korean officer, who will protect her.
          

UN Claims Hong Kong Blockchain Firm Is North Korean Laundering Sham

 Cache   

United Nations committee accuses North Korea of using a Hong Kong blockchain firm as a front to launder funds


          

Millennials Say Yes to Socialism in New Poll

 Cache   
According to a new poll, seventy percent of Millennials now plan on voting for socialists and Democrats. And thirty-six percent support communism. For those keeping score at home, that’s one in three youngsters – brought up in the modern, atheistic, secular-progressive education system in America. Not surprisingly, with the help of today’s media and Hollywood, these same Millennials believe President Donald Trump is a bigger threat to world peace than North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and Russia’s...

[More on standupforthetruth.com]
          

Laibach - Party Songs (Limited Clear Vinyl) (LP)

 Cache   
Liberation Day is a 2015 documentary, directed by Morten Traavik and Uģis Olte, covering the first rock concert in North Korea. The film featured music by Slovenian band Liabach. Party Songs collects together 4 songs that remain unreleased from the film and contains a mix of songs inspired by North Korean originals or Laibach’s interpretation of North Korean folk songs.
          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

A policy landscape of sexual orientation, gender identity and the internet

 Cache   

Authored by: 

AttachmentSize
PDF icon gw2015-kara.pdf946.12 KB

A policy landscape of sexual orientation, gender identity and the internet

Introduction

Two groundbreaking advances in international human rights have been made in the last half decade, with recognition by intergovernmental bodies that human rights law applies equally to all persons regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity (SOGI), and that human rights law is equally applicable online as offline. However, these achievements have not been without significant advocacy efforts by civil society. While internet rights are being increasingly integrated and addressed across the international human rights system, developments on SOGI have been laboured, politicised and isolated, with no state consensus. This report considers the trends, shifts and convergences in international policy making, using a geopolitical analysis.

A brief history

Sexual orientation and gender identity

Activists have been advocating for international recognition of SOGI-related rights as far back as the Beijing World Conference on Women in 1995,1 with concerted efforts to develop state awareness and recognition of the issues since a failed resolution on human rights and sexual orientation in 2003. 2 Brazil’s introduction, and later withdrawal, of a draft text was a catalyst for a number of civil society groups and activists working on sexuality and gender issues to communicate and coordinate more consistently to develop strategies to engage the UN human rights system on these issues. 3 This collective organising led to states delivering a series of joint statements at the UN General Assembly and Human Rights Council (HRC) between 2005 and 2011; 4 increasing support for SOGI rights from a handful of countries to nearly half of the UN member states; and finally the adoption by the HRC of the first ever UN resolution on “human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity” in June 2011, 5 and the second in September 2014. 6

Internet rights

Although civil society has been involved in internet policy and governance spaces since the internet was created, the internet has only recently featured in international human rights policy development arenas. The impact of the internet on human rights was first recognised at the international level by an HRC resolution on freedom of expression in 2009. 7 Since then, the UN has adopted a number of resolutions developing international policy on this theme. In particular, the HRC adopted a resolution on “The promotion, protection and enjoyment of human rights on the Internet” 8 in June 2012 with 85 state co-sponsors, which affirmed that the same human rights apply online as offline. The following year in November 2013, the General Assembly adopted a resolution on the right to privacy in the digital age, 9 which was followed up by the HRC in March 2015 with a procedural resolution of the same title, creating a UN expert mechanism on the right to privacy. 10 Since the 2009 resolution on freedom of expression, a number of thematic UN resolutions have addressed internet rights. 11

Comparing intersectional recognition

While internet rights concerns have effectively been mainstreamed into initiatives dealing with other human rights issues, sexual orientation and gender identity remain isolated from relevant state-negotiated human rights documents. 12

Internet rights have been recognised by consensus in a number of intergovernmental policy documents, such as resolutions on freedom of opinion and expression, freedom of association and assembly, and the safety of journalists. 13 The use of the internet and other forms of technology in propagating harassment and violence against women has been acknowledged by the Commission on the Status of Women 14 – the primary UN political body tasked with women’s rights issues – and by the General Assembly in a resolution on protecting women human rights defenders. 15

Conversely, there is a huge struggle to include any language that might be associated with SOGI in any government-negotiated documents at the international level, with such language overwhelmingly negotiated out of draft texts or put to a vote. For example, even the word “gender” has become controversial because some governments insist that gender can only denote biological sex, refusing to accept the concept of gender as a social construct or to recognise identities beyond the male-female binary. 16

As a result, where SOGI language has been included in negotiated documents, it has been so virtually in isolation from intersecting fields, such as violence or discrimination against women or the protection of human rights defenders. The only UN human rights resolution to date referencing SOGI, apart from the HRC SOGI resolution itself, is the biennial General Assembly resolution on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions. While the strong opposition to recognising SOGI-related rights means the discussion is reduced to violence and discrimination (the areas that have a possibility of gaining consensus), the reference in the “killings” resolution is nonetheless hotly contested each time, with attempts to vote the language out of the resolution during the final adoption process.17

Despite the fact that a broad number of thematic and country-specific UN human rights experts regularly report a vast array of infringements of the rights of LGBTI persons,18 in social and economic rights as well as civil and political rights, the political bodies have so far failed to take the intersectional approach that has been an attribute of developments on internet rights.

Politics of sexual orientation and gender identity rights

International intergovernmental debate on SOGI is a delicate matter, and unfortunately plays out in ways that are politically divisive and strategically counterproductive. Although there is a slow but steady increase in support for these issues from states from all regions, they are still perceived as primarily Western priorities despite the fact that the first UN SOGI resolution was tabled by South Africa and Brazil, and the second by Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Uruguay.

This is partly because Western states have styled themselves as international leaders on SOGI, critiquing discriminatory laws and practices outside of their regional group, and is compounded by certain Western states using aid conditionality to apply pressure on ex-colonies to repeal colonial-era criminal provisions on same-sex relations. 19

These practices have created a “West versus the rest” dynamic which contributes to the geopolitical polarisation on gender and sexuality-related rights that is reflected at the international level, and alienates potential support from those states that are open to discussing SOGI-related rights, but are opposed to Western hegemony on the international stage.

The politicisation of SOGI plays out in intergovernmental human rights policy development spaces such as the HRC in divisive and regressive ways. Firstly we have seen a division of state positions, generally along lines of regional and political blocs. 20 Traditionally this has been Western and most Latin American states supporting SOGI issues, opposed by Russia, the Vatican, most of the African Group and members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). States within these groups that have dared to support SOGI issues have faced harsh censure from their peers. 21

Secondly, concepts such as cultural relativity, traditional values and protection of the family have been introduced and manipulated in these spaces, primarily by the religious right wing – the OIC, the Vatican, Russia, and conservative groups such as the UN Family Rights Caucus.22 Since 2009 the HRC has adopted various documents undermining the universality of rights, including three resolutions on “traditional values” and two on “protection of the family”. 23 In general, the support and opposition for these initiatives has been in line with positions against and for SOGI-related language respectively.

The politicisation of sexuality rights in international forums means that foreign policy is often at odds with national-level standards and developments, particularly on rights relating to gender identity. For example, some Western states, such as Belgium, France, Norway and Switzerland, present themselves as champions of LGBT rights in international debates while requiring transgender people to undergo sterilisation in order to legally change their gender, 24 a policy that the European Court of Human Rights has ruled to be a violation of the rights to privacy and family life. 25 Conversely, some states that have culturally established and documented forms of gender diversity 26 – and in the case of Pakistan leading case law recognising the rights of hijras27 – claim that such diversity is contrary to their cultural, moral or religious values when it comes to international debate. 28 This is a terrible contradiction of domestic reality and foreign policy.

State positions on SOGI in the international bodies have almost become a symbolic representation of one side versus another in the greater struggle for a new world order that replaces Western hegemony. Sadly, this positioning is to the detriment of human rights, including through the development of international legal norms and standards that exclude LGBTIQ persons.

Politics of internet rights

In comparison to the tumultuous international debates on SOGI, internet rights policy has been developing relatively smoothly, with consensus resolutions and references in the UN General Assembly, the HRC and the Commission on the Status of Women. This is not to suggest that states unanimously respect or support internet-related rights, but that opposition is more nuanced and complex than the open hostility that some governments express on SOGI.

While there does indeed appear to be international consensus on the issue of access to technology, a customary division of state positions on other issues such as freedom of expression remains unchanged in how states see their validity online or offline. During the HRC plenary panel on freedom of expression on the internet in 2012, China called on the international community to promote internet access in developing countries while also stating that freedom of expression could undermine social stability and national security.29 Cuba has both expressed concern about issues of access to information and communications technology (ICT) and lamented the United States (US) monopoly of the internet. 30

Furthermore, the geopolitical divide over internet rights is not as clear-cut as it is on SOGI issues. When Edward Snowden leaked classified information from the US National Security Agency (NSA) in 2013, the US was in the unusual position of being criticised by many of its peers in the West.31

Indeed, states from all regions have relished the opportunity to criticise the US in the wake of the Snowden revelations. Although not explicitly critical of US policy, pre-existing anti-US sentiment meant that the resolutions on the right to privacy in the digital age quickly garnered support amongst states such as North Korea, 32 Russia, Cuba and China. 33 Consequently, it could be argued that a politicisation of internet rights issues has been to the benefit of consensus-building on international human rights policy development on these issues.

SOGI versus internet rights policy

As SOGI language is a notorious key to destroying consensus in government negotiations, states have used sexual orientation references as a bargaining chip to block or undermine developments that they oppose.

For example, sexual orientation language was used by Western states to bargain against references to the “defamation of religions” in international discussions on racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, both during the Durban Review Conference in 2009 and in follow-up meetings and negotiations. 34

This highly questionable tactic arose in discussions on internet rights in negotiations on a resolution on the right to privacy in the digital age at the UN General Assembly in 2013, when a key ally of the US proposed including a reference to sexual orientation. Some of the Five Eyes 35 countries readily supported the proposed language, while other states that were supportive of the resolution theme objected, knowing they would not be able to join consensus on a text that contained sexual orientation language. This was understood to be a strategy to break consensus on an issue that those states implicated in the revelations of deep breaches of privacy rights could not otherwise break without admitting that they did not support the key message of the resolution.

As the Five Eyes countries were openly attempting to water down the text of the privacy resolution, 36 it seemed likely that sexual orientation language was actually being introduced in order to polarise state positions on the text as a whole, and potentially lead to a vote. In effect, the US and its allies pitted sexual orientation against the right to privacy in a failed attempt to undermine international condemnation of and action on the infringement of rights that is mass surveillance.

Moving towards an intersectional approach

Although SOGI and internet rights have developed independently from one another at the international level, the slow increase in state support for SOGI-related rights in international human rights bodies, and the increasing attention being given to internet rights in a number of different thematic resolutions, means that the UN could constructively address their intersection in the near future.

The prevailing geopolitical divide is likely to continue to obstruct the inclusion of SOGI in UN resolutions. However, with internet rights being addressed in a number of negotiated thematic texts, it is not unreasonable to suggest that relevant issues could be included in a future substantive resolution on SOGI.

Furthermore, the HRC resolution on the right to privacy in the digital age mandated the appointment of a UN Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy. The Special Procedures mechanisms 37 have been key allies in raising violations of the rights of LGBTIQ persons across a broad section of thematic and country-specific mandates. A recent report of the Special Rapporteur on the right to freedom of opinion and expression to the HRC highlighted how encryption and anonymity in digital communications enable persons persecuted because of sexual orientation or gender identity to exercise the right to freedom of opinion and expression, as well as providing, for some, the only way to securely explore basic aspects of identity such as one’s gender or sexuality. 38

The new Special Procedures mandate has been tasked to look at the right to privacy, “including in connection with” (i.e. but not limited to) the challenges arising from new technologies. Many SOGI rights issues clearly fall under the mandate focus on privacy. It will remain to be seen whether the Rapporteur chooses to address human rights concerns relating to LGBTIQ persons in the execution of the mandate.

Conclusion

With a number of consensus resolutions and documents addressing internet rights, and the creation of an expert mandate on the right to privacy, it is safe to conclude that these issues are now firmly on the UN agenda, and will continue to be mainstreamed into the work of the HRC. Meanwhile, SOGI rights remain segregated with no regular or institutionalised attention to ongoing violations. It will likely remain extremely difficult to get states to consider the human rights of LGBTIQ persons on their substantial merit as long as SOGI continues to be politicised and manipulated by both supportive states and the opposition. The new expert mechanism on the right to privacy could see these two issues being addressed concurrently and with an intersectional analysis for the first time. It remains to be seen whether intergovernmental debate will mature beyond political strife to welcome such an analysis.

References

1 See, for example, Ditsie, P. B. (1995). Statement delivered by Palesa Beverley Ditsie of South Africa, International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, at the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women, Beijing, China, 13 September. www.un.org/esa/gopher-data/conf/fwcw/conf/ngo/13123944.txt and Wilson, A. (1996). Lesbian Visibility and Sexual Rights at Beijing. Signs, 22(1). fds.duke.edu/db/attachment/409

2 In 2003 Brazil unexpectedly introduced a draft text on sexual orientation to the former UN Commission on Human Rights. The resolution faced strong opposition, which led to it being deferred by a year and later withdrawn from consideration.

3 ARC International. (2004). International Dialogue on Gender, Sexuality & Human Rights: Final report. Geneva: ARC International. arc-international.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/International-Dialogue-Report-Geneva-2004.doc

4 ARC International. (2011). LGBT Rights at the UN: A brief overview. Geneva: ARC International. arc-international.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/LGBT-Rights-at-the-UN.pdf

5 A/HRC/RES/17/19. (2011). ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?si=A/HRC/RES/17/19

6 A/HRC/RES/27/32. (2014). ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?si=A/HRC/RES/27/32

7 A/HRC/RES/12/16. (2009). ap.ohchr.org/documents/sdpage_e.aspx?b=10&se=100&t=11

8 A/HRC/RES/20/8. (2012). ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?si=A/HRC/RES/20/8

9 A/RES/68/167. (2013). www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/68/167

10 A/HRC/RES/28/16. (2015). ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?si=A/HRC/RES/28/16

11 See, for example, A/HRC/RES/21/16, The rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association (2012). ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?si=A/HRC/RES/21/16; A/HRC/RES/23/2, The role of freedom of opinion and expression in women’s empowerment. (2013). ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?si=A/HRC/RES/23/2; A/HRC/RES/24/5, The rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association. (2013). ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?si=A/HRC/RES/24/5; A/RES/68/163, The safety of journalists and the issue of impunity. (2013). www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/68/163; A/RES/68/181, Promotion of the Declaration on the Right and Responsibility of Individuals, Groups and Organs of Society to Promote and Protect Universally Recognized Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms: protecting women human rights defenders. (2013). www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/68/181; and A/RES/69/166, The right to privacy in the digital age. (2014). www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/69/166

12 While this paper examines how these issues have progressed in intergovernmental spaces, it is important to note that infringements on the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) persons are consistently raised by UN human rights expert mechanisms, such as the Special Procedures, treaty monitoring bodies, and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, across a broad number of thematic and country specific reports. See for example: www.icj.org/sogi-un-database

13 See footnote 10.

14 CSW agreed conclusions on the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls. (2013). Para. 34(ww). www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/csw/csw57/CSW57_Agreed_Conclusions_%28CSW_report_excerpt%29.pdf

15

A/RES/68/181. (2013). www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/68/181

16 See, for example, Adolphe, J. (2012). 'Gender' Wars at the United Nations. Ave Maria Law Review, 11(1). papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2232495

17 ISHR et al. (2012, 22 November). Governments Condemn Extrajudicial Executions in Seminal UN Vote. International Service for Human Rights. www.ishr.ch/news/governments-condemn-extrajudicial-executions-seminal-un-vote; ISHR. (2012, 20 November). UN General Assembly: Rights groups welcome condemnation of killing of LGBT persons. International Service for Human Rights. www.ishr.ch/news/un-general-assembly-rights-groups-welcome-condemnation-killing-lgbt-persons

18 This report primarily uses the language of “sexual orientation” and “gender identity”, which have been acknowledged by the intergovernmental bodies, but also refers to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer persons using the relevant acronyms LGBT, LGBTI or LGBTIQ, depending on the particular context. For example, while activists and human rights defenders might use the language of Queer rights, this term has not been taken up by the UN, but the UN does recognise and use L,G,B,T and I. Other language yet to be referenced in UN negotiated documents includes “gender expression” and “bodily integrity”.

19 Abolafia Anguita, L. (2012, 9 March). Aid conditionality and respect for LGBT people rights. Sexuality Policy Watch. sxpolitics.org/we-recommend-134/7369

20 UN member states are divided into five regional groups: the African Group, Asia-Pacific Group, Eastern European Group, Latin America and the Caribbean Group, and Western European and Others Group. There are also a number of additional political blocs and affiliations of states and sub-regional blocs that form collective positions on issues, such as the Arab Group, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Mercosur, the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), the European Union (EU), etc.

21 For example, South Africa and Mauritius were publicly denigrated by Nigeria, the then coordinator of the African Group, for their leadership on and support for the first UN resolution on human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity in 2011.

22 www.unfamilyrightscaucus.org/un-initiatives/statements-activities

23 Resolutions on “traditional values”: A/HRC/RES/12/21 (2009); A/HRC/RES/16/3 (2011); A/HRC/RES/21/3 (2012); on “protection of the family”: A/HRC/RES/26/11 (2014); A/HRC/RES/29/22 (2015).

24 Transrespect versus Transphobia Worldwide (TvT), Legal and Social Mapping: www.transrespect-transphobia.org/en_US/mapping.htm

25 European Court of Human Rights. (2015, 10 March). Refusal to authorise transsexual to have access to gender reassignment surgery breached right to respect for private life. (Press release.) hudoc.echr.coe.int/webservices/content/pdf/003-5032376-6183620

26 See, for example, Jain, D., & Rhoten, K. (2013, 28 December). A Comparison of the Legal Rights of Gender Non-Conforming Persons in South Asia. Economic & Political Weekly. www.academia.edu/11810587/A_Comparison_of_the_Legal_Rights_of_Gender_Non-Conforming_Persons_in_South_Asia

27 Khaki v. Rawalpindi, Supreme Court of Pakistan (12 December 2009).

28 See, for example: United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG). (2011, 17 June). Council establishes mandate on Côte d’Ivoire, adopts protocol to child rights treaty, requests study on discrimination and sexual orientation. unog.ch/unog/website/news_media_archive.nsf/%28httpNewsByYear_en%29/C125763C00590FD6C12578B2004B0A50?OpenDocument; UNOG. (2012, 7 March). Human Rights Council holds panel discussion on discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity. unog.ch/unog/website/news_media_archive.nsf/%28httpNewsByYear_en%29/C125763C00590FD6C12579BA004DFE81?OpenDocument; UNOG. (2014, 26 September). Human Rights Council adopts resolution on sexual orientation and gender identity and concludes twenty-seventh session. unog.ch/unog/website/news_media.nsf/%28httpNewsByYear_en%29/24F74BA2FCAB79CDC1257D5F0063A227?OpenDocument; UNOG. (2015, 22 June). Human Rights Council holds general debate on the promotion and protection of all human rights. unog.ch/unog/website/news_media.nsf/%28httpNewsByYear_en%29/C85AF94F13C23F94C1257E6C0059B456?OpenDocument

29 UNOG. (2012, 29 February). Human Rights Council holds panel discussion on the promotion and protection of freedom of expression on the internet. unog.ch/unog/website/news_media_archive.nsf/%28httpNewsByYear_en%29/C125763C00590FD6C12579B300535CC6?OpenDocument

30 Ibid.

31 MacAskill, E., & Borger, J. (2013, 30 June). New NSA leaks show how US is bugging its European allies. The Guardian. www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jun/30/nsa-leaks-us-bugging-european-allies

32 United Nations. (2013, 26 November). Third Committee Approves Text Titled ‘Right to Privacy in the Digital Age’, as It Takes Action on 18 Draft Resolutions. www.un.org/press/en/2013/gashc4094.doc.htm

33 UNOG. (2015, 26 March). Human Rights Council creates mandate of Special Rapporteur on the Right to Privacy. unog.ch/unog/website/news_media.nsf/%28httpNewsByYear_en%29/4CA5769DF702C0CCC1257E14005F5F4B?OpenDocument

34 See, for example, ISHR. (2009, 4 November). Stalemate at the Ad Hoc Committee on complementary standards. International Service for Human Rights. www.ishr.ch/news/stalemate-ad-hoc-committee-complementary-standards

35https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_Eyes

36 MacAskill, E., & Ball, J. (2013, 21 November). UN surveillance resolution goes ahead despite attempts to dilute language. The Guardian. www.theguardian.com/world/2013/nov/21/un-surveillance-resolution-us-uk-dilute-language

37 The UN Special Procedures are independent human rights experts with mandates to report and advise on human rights from a thematic or country-specific perspective. Special procedures are either an individual (called "Special Rapporteur" or "Independent Expert") or a working group composed of five members.

38 A/HRC/29/32. (2015). Paras 1 & 12. www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/RegularSessions/Session29/Documents/A.HRC.29.32_AEV.doc

Themes: 


          

You Sunk My Battleship

 Cache   
Preface

People who make military policy and amateurs who follow it alike are in something of a vacuum when it comes to naval warfare.  While the Navy is a very large share of the United States Defense Department budget, there have been so few skirmishes in the past fifty years or so that it is hard to get a reality check on the multi-billion dollar expenditures involved. The few incidents which have occurred, meanwhile, have taken on disproportionate importance.  

While some naval history is too distant to be of much use, from the ramming battles between glorified rowboats of the Greeks, to the days of sails and cannons, it is fair, at least, to look at the experience of World War II, the last full fledged blue sea naval campaign in world history.  This experience has informed much of the current conventional wisdom regarding naval warfare, and while the lessons learned in World War II need to be updated to reflect technological advances that have taken place since then, they are too recent to safely ignore.

Among other things, World War II taught the lesson that the heavy armor of a battleship was no match for modern offensive weapons. 

As the Wikipedia article linked above explains:
Battleships were the largest and most complex, and hence the most expensive warships of their time; as a result, the value of investment in battleships has always been contested. 
As the French politician Etienne Lamy wrote in 1879, "The construction of battleships is so costly, their effectiveness so uncertain and of such short duration, that the enterprise of creating an armored fleet seems to leave fruitless the perseverance of a people". The Jeune École school of thought of the 1870s and 1880s sought alternatives to the crippling expense and debatable utility of a conventional battlefleet. It proposed what would nowadays be termed a sea denial strategy, based on fast, long-ranged cruisers for commerce raiding and torpedo boat flotillas to attack enemy ships attempting to blockade French ports. 
The ideas of the Jeune École were ahead of their time; it was not until the 20th century that efficient mines, torpedoes, submarines, and aircraft were available that allowed similar ideas to be effectively implemented. The determination of powers such as Germany to build battlefleets with which to confront much stronger rivals has been criticised by historians, who emphasise the futility of investment in a battlefleet that has no chance of matching its opponent in an actual battle.
Large Warships In Existing Navies

Today, there are only two ships of the battleship class in the world, both in the Russian Navy, only one of which is in active service, the 28,000 ton Admiral Nakhimov commissioned in 1988 is currently undergoing refit and is out of service, and the 28,000 ton Pyotr Velikiy, of the same class commissioned in 1998 is in active service.  

The 14,564 ton Zumwalt class destroyer of the U.S. Navy, the largest warship in the U.S. Navy that is not an aircraft carrier or non-combatant logistics ship, and is is arguably misclassified as a destroyer deserves a battleship designation. Just three Zumwalt class destroyers have three have been built (and no more have been ordered). One was commissioned in 2016, one was commissioned in 2019, and one is awaiting a commission later this year. It cost $7.5 billion per ship of total cost to build and has been severely criticized:
Mike Fredenburg analyzed the program for National Review after Zumwalt broke down in the Panama Canal in November 2016, and he concluded that the ship's problems "are emblematic of a defense procurement system that is rapidly losing its ability to meet our national security needs." Fredenburg went on to detail problems relating to the skyrocketing costs, lack of accountability, unrealistic goals, a flawed concept of operations, the perils of designing a warship around stealth, and the failure of the Advanced Gun System. He concludes:

"The Zumwalt is an unmitigated disaster. Clearly it is not a good fit as a frontline warship. With its guns neutered, its role as a primary anti-submarine-warfare asset in question, its anti-air-warfare capabilities inferior to those of our current workhorse, the Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, and its stealth not nearly as advantageous as advertised, the Zumwalt seems to be a ship without a mission."
Indeed, only twenty navies in the world have surface warships (including aircraft carriers, but not transport ships) larger than a frigate: U.S. (111), Japan (48), China (33), Russia (20), India (14), France (14), United Kingdom (7), Norway (5), Italy (4), Taiwan (4), Netherlands (4), Denmark (3), Germany (3), South Korea (3), Egypt (3), Saudi Arabia (3), Spain (2), Brazil (1), Thailand (1), and Morocco (1).

Only seven of these countries (China, Russia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, Thailand and Morocco) would plausibly be U.S. naval warfare adversaries in the foreseeable future (while many of the remaining thirteen countries would likely be allies of the U.S. in an future naval warfare in their region). These seven plausible adversaries have 62 large surface warships ships combined. Of these only China and Russia are really serious concerns militarily and they have 53 large surface warships combined.

The Russian fleet's large ships, moreover, are split between several global regions that are distant from each other in some case (Northern, Baltic, Black Sea and Pacific). The aircraft carrier, the battleship, one smaller cruiser, and six destroyers are in Russia's Northern fleet. One smaller cruiser and five destroyers are in Russia's Pacific fleet. One of its smaller cruisers and one of its destroyers are in Russia's Black Sea fleet. Three of its destroyers are in Russia's Baltic fleet.

Several other plausible U.S. naval warfare adversaries such as Iran and North Korea have submarines but no large surface combatants.

Currently, the U.S. has 20 aircraft carriers (11 "super carriers" of 100,000 tons or more, and 9 amphibious assault ships which can carry helicopters, Osprey aircraft, Harrier aircraft or F-35B aircraft of 40,000-45,000 tons), Italy has 2, Japan has 4, France has 4, Australia has 2, Egypt has 2, and Brazil, China, India, Russia, Spain, Thailand and the United Kingdom each have one. In all there are 42 aircraft carriers in active naval service in the world.

Five aircraft carriers (one each from the U.K., China, Russia, India and France in order of size) are between the size of a U.S. super carrier and the smallest U.S. amphibious assault ship ranging from 42,000 to 65,000 tons (and only four of these from the China, Russia, India and France, and the ten U.S. super carriers, allow for something other than a vertical landing). The other eighteen aircraft carriers range from 11,486 tons to 27,100 tons (eleven of which are restricted to vertical takeoff and landing aircraft such as helicopters and the MV-22 Osprey). All twenty-seven carriers under 42,000 tons and two larger aircraft (one from the U.S. at 45,000 tons and one from the U.K. at 65,000 tons) are restricted either to short takeoff vertical landing aircraft such as an F-35B or a Harrier, or to vertical takeoff and landing aircraft.

Eleven more carriers (including two that are only VTOL carriers) are undergoing sea trials or ordered: the U.S. 3, China 3, and South Korea, India, Italy and Turkey one each.

Currently, the U.S. has 22 cruisers (10,000 tons each) and Russia has 4 (one battleship with 28,000 tons and three cruisers with 12,500 tons) in active service. In all there are 27 cruisers in active naval service in the world. The U.S. cruisers are virtually indistinguishable from its destroyers and slightly inferior to them as they are older designs.

Currently, the U.S. has 69 destroyers (including 2 of the Zumwalt class), Japan has 44, China has 32, Russia has 15, India has 13, France has 10, the U.K. has 6, Norway has 5Taiwan has 4, the Netherlands has 4Germany has 3, Denmark has 3South Korea has 3Saudi Arabia has 3, Italy has 2, Egypt has 1, Morocco has 1, and Spain has 1. The largest destroyer in active service (other than the two Zumwalt class destroyers in active service) is 10,290 tons and many of which are considerably smaller. Some of the destroyer class ships are larger, more capable ships actually called frigates in an effort to make comparisons comparable. All ships classified as frigates for these purposes are under 5,000 tons, although a few particularly capable frigates between 4,000 and 5,000 tons are classified as destroyers. There are 219 destroyers in all of the world's navies combined.

In all there are 42 aircraft carriers over 11,000 tons and 7 other surface combatants over 11,000 tons in naval service in the world. Of those, 20 aircraft carriers and 2 other surface combatants are in the U.S. Navy and 1 aircraft carrier and 4 other surface combatants (one battleship and three cruisers) are in the Russian Navy. The other navies of the world have 21 aircraft carriers, only 10 of which are more than VTOL helicopter carriers. There are 244 other surface combatants bigger than frigates in the world in active naval service (of which 67 are in the U.S. Navy and 15 are in the Russian Navy).

The Japanese Naval Experience

The case that really brought this home for the Japanese was the sinking of the battleship Yamato.  This 71,000 ton ship with massive 18 inch guns was tough.  It  had previously survived a hit from a torpedo delivered by a U.S. submarine on Christmas Day in 1943, and two bombs that hit it in October of 1944, in the Leyte Gulf.  Two more 36,000 ton Japanese battleships, the Fuso and the Yamashiro, were sunk by naval gunfire and torpedoes in that same October battle.  Bombs damaged the 39,000 ton Japanese battleship Nagato in the battle of the Leyte Gulf badly enough to remove it from action. Ultimately, air power prevailed over the big guns and heavy armor of the pinnacle of the battleship era.  On April 7, 1945, the Yamato was sunk by carrier based U.S. aircraft and it took 2,498 Japanese sailors with it.  The 32,000 ton Japanese battleship Ise (already removed from service nine months earlier by a mine), and Japanese battleships Hyunga and Haruna were sunk by carrier based U.S. aircraft in July of 1945.

Japan had already lost its 32,000 ton battlecruiser Kirishima to 16” naval gunfire from the 47,000 ton American battleship Washington in 1942 in one of the last of the battles that went according traditional naval models of close range ship to ship combat, in this case, at a range of a mile and a half.  The 28,000 ton Japanese battleship Kongo was sunk by a submarine in November of 1944.  Its three sister ships were sunk by U.S. aircraft in World War II.

The American Naval Experience in World War II

Americans remember Pearl Harbor.  Yes, this carrier based air attack was a surprise.  But, a heavily armored hull did not prevent this attack from sinking the 32,000 ton U.S. battleship Arizona and three other battleships.  Four more battleships were seriously damaged, the 29,000 ton American battleship Nevada among them, although the Nevada was ultimately returned to service and survived further battle damage on multiple occasions.  Few naval strategists before Pearl Harbor had realized how vulnerable the fleet was to aerial attack.

The 33,000 ton American battleship Idaho ran aground off Okinawa in June of 1945.  American battleship Pennsylvania,  a sister ship of the Arizona, was taken out of action by enemy aircraft in August of 1945.

The 45,000 ton American battleship Indiana did exhibit the resilience in the face of damage which battleships are legendary for notwithstanding a mixed experience in real life.  It survived both a collision and a hit by a kamakazi pilot in 1944, and serious storm damage in 1945, yet survived until decommissioning in 1963.  The 45,000 ton South Dakota similarly sustained and survived repeated battle damage. The 56,000 ton American battleship Iowa likewise survived serious damage from shore fire sustained in March of 1944, and the 47,000 ton battleship Washington survived a 1942 torpedo hit from a Japanese submarine and a 1945 friendly fire incident.

The German Naval Experience in World War II

Germany’s 51,000 ton battleship the Bismark found its fate at the bottom of the sea in May of 1941.  The British Royal Air Force damaged the 40,000 ton German battleship Gneisenau to the point that it never again was useable as a battleship in 1942.  Sister German battleship Scharnhorst, however, survived in the face of a seemingly never ending barrage of hits sustained.

The Italian and Vichy French Naval Experiences in World War II

Both Italy and Vichy France both saw battleships destroyed in port before they were ever launched.  

The planned 48,000 ton battleship Clemenceau was destroyed in its French port during a bombing raid in August 1944.  The 36,000 ton battleship Dunkerque, in the hands of the Vichy French, was damaged sufficiently to be taken out of action, and lost one in seven of its crew members, in July of 1940, by a combination of British warship attacks and torpedoes in two separate incidents.

The 30,000 ton Italian battleship Duilio wasn’t actually sunk, but a British bombing raid in November of 1940 took it out of service for about a year, and the ship served only a brief secondary role in World War II thereafter.  The 46,000 ton battleship Vittorio Veneto was taken out of action by British aircraft in 1941, then by a submarine, and then 1943 by another aircraft.  The 47,000 ton Italian battleship Littorio was taken out of commission by British aircraft by June of 1942.

The Spanish Naval Experience in World War II

The 16,000 ton battleship Espana was sunk by a “friendly” mine in July of 1937 during the Spanish civil war, killing a third of the sailors on board.

The British Naval Experience in World Wars I and II.

While it predates World War II, it is worth recalling that the 22,000 ton British battleship Dreadnought (the second of that name launched in 1906) which became synonymous with the very notion of a battleship, sank only one enemy vessel, a German submarine, in all of World War I.  It achieved this end not with its ten 12” guns, but with a methodology as old as Greek naval warfare.  It rammed it.

German dive bombing planes took the 30,000 ton British battleship Iron Duke out of service on October 17, 1939.  It Italian airplane’s torpedo took the 38,000 ton British battleship Nelson out of service for a year on September 27, 1941.  The British lost the 42,000 ton battleship Prince of Wales in December of 1941 to an attack by Japanese aircraft, after having suffered serious damage from naval guns, which was repaired, earlier that same year.  The 33,000 ton British battleship Queen Elizabeth was removed from service when an Italian frogman bombed it while it was in harbor that same month.

          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

Tour company offers St Patrick's Day booze-up in North Korea

 Cache   
Smiling Grape Adventure Tours, based in Cambridgeshire, will take guests to Pyongyang's best pubs, bars and microbreweries in March 2020.
          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16

 Cache   
South Korea says it has deported 2 North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen and fled to South Korea
          

South Korea says it deported 2 North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen and fled to South

 Cache   
South Korea says it deported 2 North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen and fled to South
          

Norea Korea Fires 2 Missiles in the Sea Amid Stalled Talks

 Cache   
The launches followed statements of displeasure by top North Korean officials over the slow pace of nuclear negotiations with the United States.
          

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16

 Cache   

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea says it has deported 2 North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen onboard and fled to South Korea. South Korea’s Unification Ministry said Thursday the two North Koreans were initially found aboard a boat south of the sea border last Saturday. It says a South […]
          

North says US-S. Korea drills ‘throw wet blanket’ on talks

 Cache   

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea said Thursday planned U.S.-South Korean military drills would amount to “throwing a wet blanket over the spark” of nuclear negotiations that are “on the verge of extinction.” Since the start of the nuclear talks last year, the U.S. and South Korea have cancelled or scaled back their regular […]
          

North Korea Set Up a Blockchain Firm to Launder Cash: UN

 Cache   

North Korea Set Up a Blockchain Firm to Launder Cash: UN North Korea set up a Hong Kong blockchain firm in a bid to to launder stolen cryptocurrency and avoid sanctions, the UN has reportedly said. Source: Import

The post North Korea Set Up a Blockchain Firm to Launder Cash: UN appeared first on Bitcoin-Blockchain-Kryptowährungen Infos News Dienstleistung.


          

Watch truth about Rand Paul(one of the staunchest supporter of neonzism in US - so called LIBERTARIAN) and not only Trump

 Cache   
Do I know what I am talking about or not 

Rand Paul claimed Americans I am neonzi - he claimed this to his neighbor anesthesiologist(got in physical confrontation after one realized the truth about me and Rand Paul per who in reality is who) who became involved in MKultra this way and used as staff member during first trips to Europe. Rick Perry, Ron Paul were in Bush/Trump's team...you can see clearly that Rand Paul is willing to die for his little Hitler https://news.yahoo.com/donald-trump-jr-tweets-name-of-whistleblower-164434463.html


I have revealed here stated some three/four years ago or so...and now you see with your eyes. Revealing thee truth about whistle blower should have them all arrested and trialed. This people loud and clear call for whistle blower's assassination which is contrary with federal laws - biggest offense in fact related to corruption.

Ron Paul and Rand Paul were vehement defenders of US Constitution if you remember - in reality nothing more than  German neonazi tools. 

IT WAS ALL ABOUT FREEDOM...LIBERTARIANISM - ALEX JONES RON AND RAND PAUL...FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IS POISONING YOU PARANOIA...FLUORIDE TOOTH PASTE WHICH IS KILLING YOU AND NOT NEONAZI SWASTIKA IN SHEEP'S COSTUME.

Ron Paul didn't campaigned for US military only to get out of bases worldwide - he and his son claimed that US is like police officer of the world and must stop acting like this and our people must be brought home rather than protect others globally...idea was to get instead US troops out of Germany RATHER than have Germans pay for their stay there as obligated !!! Something Trump helps him 24/7. 

Germany is ready for another war and thirsty for land grab in Poland. German gestures on how one no longer wants nukes translate only in fact that one has stronger weapons that regular nukes and pressure on Poland for one to refrain itself from obtaining the same. WE HAVE HITLERISM IN MAKING !!! THIS TIME ONE STARTED BIG GERMANY - ON  THE OTHER SIDE OF THE OCEAN.

Nobody knows US establishment as much as I do. I had opportunity to study them under MKultra from really up close.

TRAITOR Kaczynski keeps Poland unarmed. Rather wastes money on useless planes vs what should be basic protection for Poland which even North Korea have stranded itself too as a solution from repeated war.

          

The agenda of the Nobel Peace Prize

 Cache   

Why Obama got a Nobel Peace Prize for nothing — and Trump never will for anything


President Barack Obama’s first act as a Nobel Peace Prize winner in 2009 — nine months after he took the oath of office — was to try to wriggle out of accepting it.
“The morning the prize was announced, his staff investigated whether anyone had failed to travel to Oslo to receive their prize,” writes Nobel insider Geir Lundestad in “The World’s Most Prestigious Prize” (Oxford), out this month.
Apparently, the president was among the 61 percent of Americans who believed he didn’t deserve it.
“It is true, Obama did not do much before winning,” Lundestad, 74, a member of Norway’s Nobel Committee until 2014, told The Post. “But he represented the ideals of the committee. And when we have an American president who supports that message, we like to strengthen him.”
Obama’s advisers soon decided the honor could not be refused. But as ridicule rained down on the committee for handing a peacemaker’s award to a man who was ordering drone strikes on civilians overseas, the White House grew increasingly hesitant, dithering for weeks over how much of the traditional three-day awards gala he would attend.
In the end, Obama stayed just long enough to deliver an acceptance speech that tried to justify the wars he was waging in Iraq and Afghanistan — rationalizations that visibly irked First Lady Michelle Obama.“Did you have to go there?” she asked when he concluded, according to Lundestad’s book.
The committee’s risky choice backfired, Lundestad admits, as the new president took flak from all sides for accepting it before he had accomplished any of his lofty foreign policy goals. Even supporters like Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus called the prize “ridiculous — embarrassing, even.” David Axelrod, a top Obama advisor, said it was “more of a surreal challenge than a cause for celebration.”
Enlarge ImageAuthor Geir Lundestad
Author Geir LundestadKyodo via AP Images
“It would be difficult, even impossible, for Obama to live up to the enormous expectations,” Lundestad writes. “I personally greatly doubted their decision.”
But the committee members took the chance out of sheer exultation that a Republican no longer resided in the White House, Lundestad suggests in his book, an expanded English-language version of a memoir he published in Norwegian in 2015.
Of the 100 Nobel Peace Prizes bestowed since 1901, 22 of them have gone to Americans — far more than any other nation in the world. The entire continent of Africa has produced only 11 Peace Prize winners, including this year’s laureate, Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia.
It’s a matter of geopolitics, Lundestad explained. “It is always Norwegian policy to maintain a good relationship with the United States,” he said. “Russia is our neighbor, and we need a big friend.”
The Nobel Committee, under the terms of Alfred Nobel’s 1895 will, is made up of prominent Norwegians who share a particular worldview.
The resulting philosophy of “liberal internationalism” prioritizes globalist organizations over national governments and boosts ideas like arms control and environmentalism.
“To Norwegians it is almost as if the USA is split in two,” Lundestad writes. “A liberal and democratic country with which we feel solidarity and a conservative country for which we have little respect.”
Three of the four prize-winning American presidents have been Democrats: Obama, Woodrow Wilson and Jimmy Carter. The sole Republican is Theodore Roosevelt, who won it in 1906 as a progressive whose outlook bears little resemblance to that of today’s GOP.
Almost all of the other US honorees — such as Al Gore, Martin Luther King Jr. and anti-nuclear activist Linus Pauling — have been on the left end of our political spectrum. “The warmth of our relationship with the US is of course much higher with a left-of-center president,” Lundestad said.
Ronald Reagan was pointedly snubbed in 1990 when the Soviet Union’s Mikhail Gorbachev won a solo Peace Prize for ending the Cold War.
“Gorbachev was not a true democrat, obviously,” Lundestad said — making him one of the committee’s most controversial picks. But Reagan’s peace-through-strength policies were so unpopular in Norway that a Nobel for him was unthinkable.
President Trump has been nominated for the prize by two Norwegian legislators — valid nominators, under committee rules — for his peace overtures to North Korea. But his “America First” ideology and aversion to globalism make him an equally unlikely candidate. “I probably will never get it,” Trump said in February. “I think I’ll get a Nobel Prize for a lot of things — if they gave it out fairly, which they don’t,” Trump complained again during September’s UN General Assembly.
It’s the one thing on which Lundestad and the president agree.
“I would be extremely surprised if Donald Trump ever received the Nobel Peace Prize,” Lundestad said. “He may say he wants to bring peace to the Middle East or the Korean Peninsula, but he has not accomplished anything,” he added. “And his policies do not fall into line with the ideas of liberal internationalism” — no matter how those efforts may turn out.

          

“The Chinese notion of brinksmanship is central” — Christopher Sharman @HooverInst

 Cache   
Image: The Five Eyes at work: An aerial view of the second HMAS Australia – a heavy cruiser – passing through the Panama Canal in March 1935. Australia saw extensive combat in World War II.  Public domain.         (Official U.S. Navy photo NH 63062 (https://www.history.navy.mil/our-collections/photography/numerical-list-of-images/nhhc-series/nh-series/NH-63000/NH-63062.html) from the U.S. Navy Naval History and Heritage Command (http://www.history.navy.mil/) . Transferred from en.wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/) to Commons. Original uploader was Grant65 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Grant65) at en.wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/) 2007-06-20 [original upload date]) . Christopher Sharman, Captain, USN, & Hoover National Security Affairs Fellow (“This is an active Captain in the US Seventh Fleet — same as Magnum.”)  @HooverInst Dining with a high Japanese official in Tokyo: “When the US is weak, China doesn't respect the US or Japan; when the US is strong, China respects the US and us [Japan].” The Chinese notion of brinksmanship is central.  South China Sea, “the Great Wall of Sand,” where China has built fictitious islands out of sand and dumped soil and garbage to create seven features, not islands. China now has installed missiles there, all entirely illegally under international law. The US Navy will go anywhere international law allows; we’ll challenge according the Freedom of Navigation under Law of the Sea.  The constant going and coming of DPRK and China: the USN is the front line out there. Does the Navy have all that it needs in the coming decade or two? We’re in an era of Great Power competition. We’ve called out China and other bad actors, such as North Korea. This is where partnerships come in: they’re critical enablers to anything we do in the region. US is building partnerships with countries like Vietnam; all will help us in the future.   
          

South Korea and Japan: GSOMIA front and center. David Maxwell. @HooverInst

 Cache   
Image: Comfort Women rally in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul, August 2011.  Permissions*: see below . David Maxwell, senior Fellow specializing in North Korea and East Asia Affairs at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, covers the spat between South Korea and Japan, but it’s being smoothed out now, starting with military cooperation to lead to trade cooperation. The best case would be for Pres Moon to set aside historical indignities and improve relations by reviving the GSOMIA  [pron: jeh-somia; general security of military information agreement].  Also, there’s a dispute ‘twixt the two over some islands that the US carefully and dispassionately calls “rocks.” International concern over the military sharing agreement between Seoul and Tokyo, but Moon may be able to set aside some worries to focus on the real threat, North Korea. Moon’s peace and reconciliation effort with North Korea has wholly failed, as Kim has no intention of coming to a working agreement, and all he does is aim to undermine Moon. https://www.wsj.com/articles/south-korea-is-having-fewer-babies-soon-it-will-have-fewer-soldiers-11573039652 https://finance.yahoo.com/news/japan-south-korea-face-looming-210000548.html . ‪Author:  Claire Solery (https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=User:Claire_Solery&action=edit&redlink=1) I, the copyright holder of this work, hereby publish it under the following license: ‪This file is licensed under the Creative Commons (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/en:Creative_Commons) Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en) license. |    | ‪You are free: ‪to share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work ‪to remix – to adapt the work ‪Under the following conditions: •       ‪attribution – You must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use. •       ‪share alike – If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must distribute your contributions under the same or compatible license (https://creativecommons.org/share-your-work/licensing-considerations/compatible-licenses) as the original.
          

South Korea deports two North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fishermen

 Cache   
SEOUL, South Korea South Korea deported two North Koreans on Thursday after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen on a boat and fled to South Korea across the sea border over the...
          

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16

 Cache   
SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea says it has deported 2 North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen onboard and fled to South Korea.
          

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16

 Cache   
SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA South Korea says it has deported 2 North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen onboard and fled...
          

North Korea slams door on Japan PM Abe visit, calls him a 'moron'

 Cache   
North Korea on Thursday called Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a moron who should not even dream of setting foot in Pyongyang in a state media commentary laden with insults in response to his criticism of the North's latest weapons test.

          

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16

 Cache   

By The Canadian Press

SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of — South Korea deported two North Koreans on Thursday after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen on a boat and fled to South Korea across the sea border over the weekend.

The two North Koreans, both men in their 20s, were found aboard a boat south of the eastern sea border last Saturday, according to Seoul's Unification Ministry. It said a South Korean investigation later found the two had killed 16 colleagues aboard a fishing boat and escaped to South Korea.

Details of the alleged onboard killings weren't immediately known.

...

Read More
          

International: 'Armada' Trump claimed was heading to North Korea was actually heading to Australia

 Cache   
Date: 
Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 07:45

Four warships Donald Trump claimed were being sent to North Korea last week, were in fact steaming in the opposite direction to take part in military exercises with the Australian Navy over 3,500 miles away.

The USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier and three other ships in its fleet, which Mr Trump described as an “armada”, were said to have been deployed to the Sea of Japan as a “show of force” in response to North Korea’s missile tests, military officials said on April 8.

“We are sending an armada. Very powerful. We have submarines. Very powerful, far more powerful than the aircraft carrier, that I can tell you,” Trump said in an interview with Fox Business Network.
White House press Secretary Sean Spicer explained that having the flotilla in the Sea of Japan within striking distance of Pyongyang gave President Trump “options in the region.” 

But it later emerged that at the time the statement was made, the ships were not steaming towards North Korea, but to a scheduled exercise in the Indian Ocean.

At the time, the comments from the US government heightened tensions with Pyongyang, with North Korea’s state news agency describing the supposed deployment as “nothing but a reckless action of aggression to aggravate the tensions in the region”.

On Tuesday, White House officials said the statements had been based on information from the Defence Department, The New York Times reports.

But officials in the Defence Department then described a confused sequence of events leading up to the announcement of the direction of the “armada”.

SOURCE: http://www.independent.co.uk

Category: 

          

VOA Asia for Tuesday November 5

 Cache   
Apparent Chinese spying at U.S. medical institutions. A failing grade for North Korea sanctions. Tough living in a Pakistani city. The latest on U.S. impeachment. The Berlin Wall anniversary, and walking in vegan shoes.
          

VOA Asia for Monday November 4

 Cache   
Protests against leadership in Pakistan and Hong Kong. North Korea sets a deadline. New Zealand speaks to its past. The power of dance to heal a nation. Senior computing training, and a surprise celebration in Washington.
          

Seoul sends two mass murderers back to Nth Korea

 Cache   

After grisly murders at sea, North Koreans deported from South after unannounced capture and swift investigation


          

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16

 Cache   
South Korea deported two North Koreans on Thursday after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen on a boat and fled to South Korea across the sea border over the weekend ...
          

South Korea expels two North Koreans suspected of killing 16 fishermen

 Cache   
SEOUL: South Korea expelled Thursday two North Korean fishermen suspected of killing 16 colleagues before crossing the border into the South last week, South Korea's Unification Ministry said.
          

N Korea calls Abe an ‘idiot’ over criticism of weapons test

 Cache   

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea has called Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe an “idiot” after he criticized a recent weapons test by the North. In a statement attributed to a foreign ministry official, North Korea described Abe as an “idiot and villain” who was overreacting to what the North described as a test-firing […]
          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

North Korean students in the Hungarian revolution and freedom fight in 1956

 Cache   
none
          

South Korea Deports North Koreans, Says They Killed 16 Co-Workers

 Cache   
Two North Koreans were found south of the eastern sea border; an investigation determined they had killed 16 fellow fishermen and fled to South Korea
          

Egypt's president lavishly praises Trump on social media

 Cache   

CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's president lavished praise on President Donald Trump via social media, calling him a "man with unique power to confront crises."

Abdel-Fatah el-Sissi's comments were the latest public example of the two leaders' closeness.

El-Sissi thanked Trump for his "generous concern" for helping revive Egypt's deadlocked dispute with Ethiopia.

The two countries are at odds over Ethiopia's construction of a massive upstream Nile dam, which Egypt claims threatens its water supply.

The U.S. is to host talks on Wednesday between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan to discuss the dam, Cairo announced last week.

El-Sissi is a former army general who came to power in 2013. Since then, he's carried out a widespread crackdown on dissent, silencing critics and jailing thousands.

Trump has avoided censuring el-Sissi for his repression, instead admiring his efforts to combat terrorism.

Trump has drawn criticism for his relationships with autocratic leaders such as North Korea's Kim Jong Un and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The most recent round of talks between the three Nile nations collapsed last month.

Pro-government media in Egypt have cast the dam as a national security threat that could warrant military action.

The White House said in October that it supports talks to reach a sustainable agreement while "respecting each other's Nile water equities."


          

Israeli high court greenlights rights activist's expulsion

 Cache   

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's Supreme Court on Tuesday cleared the way for the expulsion of the local director of Human Rights Watch, rejecting an appeal against a lower court's decision and sparking fierce criticism by rights groups that the ruling would harm freedom of expression and their work in the country.

The director, Omar Shakir, a U.S. citizen, was initially ordered to leave the country because Israel charged that his advocacy against Israel's Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank amounted to support for the Palestinian-led boycott movement.

An Israeli law from 2017 bars entry to those who publicly support a boycott of Israel or its West Bank settlements. Shakir's case has been followed closely internationally as a litmus test for how Israel would enforce the controversial legislation.

"Does Israel want to join the ranks of countries like Iran, North Korea and Cuba that block access for Human Rights Watch staff? Today's decision will have significant ramifications," Shakir said.

"It really goes to the heart of what kind of country Israel is and wants to become in the future," he added.

Tuesday's ruling came after a lengthy legal saga in which Shakir challenged the decision to expel him, with a lower court siding with the state. Shakir was allowed to remain in Israel for the duration of the proceedings.

The judge who wrote the decision appeared to play down its potential future impact on other rights groups and activists.

"There is nothing in the decision to reflect upon other human rights organizations and activists," Justice Neal Hendel wrote. His ruling primarily dealt with the legality of the decision to expel Shakir rather than the 2017 boycott law. The court gave Shakir 20 days to leave the country and ordered him to pay the legal fees associated...


          

North Korea: The Foundations for Economic Revival

 Cache   
A Roundtable Event co-hosted by the British Korean Society and Henry Jackson Society Monday 11th November 2019, 17:30 In & Out Club, 4 St James’ Square, London SW1Y 4JU British Korean Society members only event. Sign up on their website. The Henry Jackson Society and the British Korean Society are delighted to invite Members of […]
          

North Korean fishermen 'killed 16 colleagues' before fleeing to South

 Cache   
The suspects reportedly killed the captain first, followed by other crew members who protested.
          

North Korea slams planned US military drills with South

 Cache   
Seoul (AFP) Nov 6, 2019
North Korea on Wednesday slammed Washington for plans to conduct a joint military exercise with Seoul next month, as negotiations over Pyongyang's nuclear arsenal remain deadlocked. The allies cancelled the combined air exercise known as Vigilant Ace along with several other joint drills last year amid a rapid diplomatic thaw with the North, which considers them a rehearsal for invasion.
          

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16

 Cache   

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16In an extremely unusual case, South Korea deported two North Korean fishermen on Thursday after finding they had killed 16 other crew members on their boat and then fled to South Korean waters, Seoul officials said. The two North Koreans, both men in their 20s, were captured in their boat south of the countries' eastern sea border last Saturday, according to Seoul's Unification Ministry. South Korea has a policy of accepting North Koreans who want to resettle in the South to avoid political oppressions and economic poverty at home.



          

South Korea deports North Koreans who fled after killing 16

 Cache   
Koreas_Fishermen_Killings_83624In an extremely unusual case, South Korea deported two North Korean fishermen on Thursday after finding they had killed 16 other crew members on their boat and then fled to South Korean waters, Seoul officials said.
          

North says US-S. Korea drills 'throw wet blanket' on talks

 Cache   
North Korea says planned U.S.-South Korean military drills would "throw a wet blanket over the spark" of nuclear negotiations between Pyongyang and Washington
          

All the cuteness in latest Crash Landing On You teaser!

 Cache   
Y’all, this teaser is ADORABLE. And who wouldn’t want to watch a rich girl from South Korea try to hide out in North Korea and fall in love with the soldier who’s protecting her? Watch the teaser and tell me I’m wrong. What do you think, k-fans? Are you in? Crash Landing On You starts … Continue reading All the cuteness in latest Crash Landing On You teaser!
          

The Problems Of A Centralized Company Running A Descentralized Crypto Project

 Cache   

Copia de Copia de Cryptofacil article cryptolohy.com 1300x730.png

Originally published on Publish0x: https://www.publish0x.com/cryptolohy101/problems-centralized-company-running-descentralized-crypto-p-xdkegy The more I study this subject the more I arrive at one specific realization. Bitcoin is the king of cryptoland, (among other things) because it is the most decentralized currency of all, maybe not in one specific measure, like mining farms, but as a whole, that is to say, that when you take into account the many factors that make a cryptocurrency project, Bitcoin is the one perceived as less dependent on any one particular factor to carry on. In this article, I would like to point out the fundamental problems that a Centralized Company could face when running or growing a decentralized crypto project. #1 The Whole Dynamic Is Tense When a centralized company is running or promoting a decentralized crypto project, it is not uncommon to find that sometimes the two are, in a way, fighting each other, and this is so because the whole setup is fundamentally contradictory, in my opinion in such cases there will always be an unresolved tension between the two. For instance, you have the case of Ethereum, with its Ethereum Foundation, in which Vitalik Buterin plays a role as a prominent crypto influencer, and thus, in 2017, when rumours of his death spread, caused the price of Ethereum to go down 20% which is a demonstration of how much dependent (and centralized) Ethereum is, at least as regards to the brand being heavily dependent on a 25-year-old. #2 A Company That Heavily Influences A Blockchain Is Betraying The Idea Of Going Decentralized In The First Place If you pre-mined your coin, ala xrp-labs, and that coin is in your power, you pretty much control the coin in significant ways. You can enhance certain desired behaviours via crypto prizes for developers, you can create the partnerships that you desire, you can set up giveaways that recompense the type of content you like, you can defend yourself against the government with the money you printed, and many other things, in this way, you might end up with a very profitable central company, but you most likely would not get a decentralized system that creates new waves of thought, that resolves issues that no one cares about (till they are resolved). You will pass on the opportunity to build a system or create developments that might get you delisted from some corrupt or coward exchanges and in summary all that creativity that rises from unrestricted decentralization, it's less likely to occur. #3 It Could Be Deemed A Security As Investopedia explains: "Put simply, the Howey Test asks whether the value of a transaction for one of its participants is dependent upon the other's work. Specifically, the Howey Test determines that a transaction represents an investment contract if "a person invests his money in a common enterprise and is led to expect profits solely from the efforts of the promoter or a third party," And that's another conundrum in itself. If your mere presence and activity could lead to serious lawsuits and regulation, why be "in charge" in the first place? #4 The Foundation/Company Is Seeing As The Last Arbitrator Of Problems Does your coin have some shady individuals promoting it? Then you are expected to take public sides on the whole fud-controversy. Is the communist party of china in favour of it? Is it against it? There you go, "solve" that issue. Did Trump bash your coin? Respond! Don't be a coward! A giveaway from your foundation resulted badly? People might/will sue you Does a shady company that has nothing to do with you is using your coin to scam other people? Fix it! Someone has stolen the funds of your futuristic DAO? Rework the entire blockchain! To be fair, many of these complaints that you will get are sensible, but that just goes to show you that the entire set up of a centralize company building a decentralized blockchain is at its core contradictory. #5 The Company Is Credited For Every Error Or Problem Is there a critical security bug lurking on your collaborative opensource project? Well, in that case, it is perceived as the fault of your Foundation/Company, even if you set up the system so as to receive code edits from anywhere in the world with a wifi connection. Is it your fault? well, in a sense, it is, like what would occur if you were to create a new country and your constitution was flawed, but does that mean that every single mistake could be attributable to you? Well, it depends (see? this thingy is really complicated) #6 The Community (And Not The Company) Is Credited With Everything That Goes Right Did your coin grow 3897% in a year? Yeap, the community did it (even if you put 1 billion in fiat from your billionaires pocket) Did your coin has some really interesting technological achievements? Even if only one developer has done 80% of the commits, you will hardly notice his name featured on an article. Somehow the implicit message is that communities as a whole wrote the code, or at least did the promotion necessary to bring attention to some features. Is that fair? well, it depends,... #7 The Founders Personal Enemies Become A Liability To The Blockchain Pretty self-explanatory. Another thing to take in consideration. #8 The Founders Country Can Become A Liability If the founder of a blockchain is from communist-dictatorial china, the antichristian nanny state sometimes might pull you by the hair from a dinner with Warren Buffet, or if you are a USA citizen and your stash of Bitcoin that you purchased in 2011 goes hyper-parabolic and you want to cash out into fiat, it becomes a taxable event, even if you live in Hong Kong, since as a USA citizen you are bound to pay taxes to the IRS on your worldwide income. #9 The Founders Native Language Can Become A Liability Since English is the lingua franca of the world, the founder and any prominent team members have to be able to fluently communicate his ideas on that language. But, what if it happens that he doesn't speak English? Or if it speaks it with a thick accent? Simply put, an additional barrier to make this whole thing work will occur. #10 The Founders Culture Can Become A Liability Imagine a crypto founder from North Korea. Nuff said. Problems from everywhere, both from people in favour and people against the hypothetical project. Well, to a certain extent, this will occur with other cultures as well, especially when competing cultures are thrown into the mix. France vs USA (Tezos vs DUN)?? Mexico vs USA??? China vs Japan??? #11 The Founders Personal Opinions Can Become A Liability This is kind of self-explanatory, but it is even truer when the founders' opinions fall into the "absolutely-wrong" category, like endorsing criminal behaviour. Here is one example: Vitalik Buterin — the co-founder of Ethereum, a digital currency and dapp (decentralized app) development platform — deleted tweets from his verified Twitter account Monday night that seemed to defend the idea of legalizing child pornography. In a series of tweets, Buterin argued that “doing heroin imposes risks on others,” while “simple possession of child porn does not,” and declared, “I don’t see legalizing *possession* of child porn as more radical than heroin.” Source #12 The Founders Personal Life Might Become A Liability This is very similar to the previous one. So let's just go over the next point. #13 The Founder IQ Becomes A Liability Some people say that Satoshi Nakamoto was/is a genius, others that his code is not really that well constructed, regardless, we do not have a live twitter account to prove or disprove any assumption, which in turns benefits the bitcoin crypto project more than it harms it. You couldn't say the same thing about Tron. #14 The Founders Personality/charisma/agreeableness Becomes A Liability I have just two words about this one: Craig Wright. Conclusion If you are really serious about your crypto project, and you are inclined towards humility, maybe the faceless, credit-less route will be your best option. Dunno, just think about it. Footnotes: https://fortune.com/2017/06/26/vitalik-death/ https://medium.com/bittrust/passing-the-howey-test-how-to-regulate-blockchain-tokens-d218da93a8b6 https://www.breitbart.com/tech/2017/11/14/ethereum-cryptocurrency-creator-defends-possession-of-child-porn-claims-it-can-have-social-benefits/ https://hacked.com/its-over-justin-trx-army-turns-on-tron-ceo-despite-10-btc-offer/ https://twitter.com/vaticancatholic/status/1055946715239374849
          

DTrack Damage

 Cache   
DTrack Damage

Welcome back to another episode of The 443 – Security Simplified. This week, we cover three major news stories from the past week including the NordVPN breach, Facebook suing a zero-day development firm, and the latest attack from North Korea’s Lazarus Group.

Read More - DTrack Damage


          

Inside The Microsoft Team Tracking The World's Most Dangerous Hackers

 Cache   

From Russian Olympic cyberattacks to billion-dollar North Korean malware, how one tech giant monitors nation-sponsored hackers everywhere on earth.


          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

North Korea slams door on Japan PM Abe visit, calls him an 'idiot'

 Cache   
Visit our website to read more www.InsideWorld.com.

Or if you are already subscribed hit this Story Link.
          

North Korea slams door on Japan PM Abe visit, calls him a 'moron'

 Cache   
Visit our website to read more www.InsideWorld.com.

Or if you are already subscribed hit this Story Link.
          

South Korea expels two North Koreans suspected of killing 16 fishermen

 Cache   
Visit our website to read more www.InsideWorld.com.

Or if you are already subscribed hit this Story Link.
          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

World: U.S. Agency for International Development Administrator Mark Green's Remarks at a "Celebrating World Humanitarian Day" Event

 Cache   
Source: US Agency for International Development
Country: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Brazil, Colombia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Iraq, Mexico, Myanmar, Nigeria, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, United States of America, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

For Immediate Release
Monday, August 20, 2018 Office of Press Relations
Telephone: +1.202.712.4320 | Email: press@usaid.gov

Center for Strategic and International Studies
Washington, DC
August 20, 2018

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Good morning, everyone. Thank you, Dan, for that kind introduction and thanks to all of you for being here to help mark this very important occasion.

As we begin, as we call it in Congress, I'd like to start with a point of personal privilege. I'd like to take this opportunity this morning to express our sadness over the death of Kofi Annan. He was a giant who has spent his entire life advocating for peace, and the for the protection of humanitarian workers, something that we'll be talking about today. As he so often said, "People, not states, should be at the center of what we do." His passing makes this World Humanitarian Day even more poignant.

This morning, on behalf of USAID, I hope to convey two important messages to all of you. The first is, as Dan was alluding to, relates to the rapidly-evolving nature of humanitarian relief and assistance.

The second, as we mark this day, is simply our deep, deep admiration and gratitude for the many heroes of our humanitarian work. They, and many of you, are truly extraordinary and heroic.

I have to say that before I joined USAID, I didn't really appreciate the scope and range of what it is that we do in our humanitarian work. You can see it in some of the numbers. In 2017, USAID responded to 53 crises in 51 countries. For only the second time in our agency's history, we had six DART teams, Disaster Assistance Response Teams, deployed simultaneously around the world. The first time that happened was the preceding year.

At this very moment, we have pre-positioned resources and experts in just about every part of the world. We have seven emergency stockpiles in places like Djibouti, South Africa, and Malaysia. We have full-time response staff in 30 countries. We have six regional offices and 11 adviser offices, located with partners like the military's combatant commands.

One of my most vivid memories from my first year as Administrator was, essentially, a crash course in how some of this works. One day, during last year's UN General Assembly meetings, we received word of a terrible earthquake, the second one that had struck Mexico City. One evening that week, I was walking down the street between back-to-back dinners with two different mobile phones: one with the White House, one with the DART team leader.

I was dodging pedestrians, I'm sure looking ridiculous, while the disaster professionals were helping me navigate something much more serious: how to rapidly mobilize an emergency response team to Mexico City to help our neighbors to the South respond to its second earthquake in just a few weeks' time.

The government said to us that they'd welcome the assistance of a highly-specialized type of international search and rescue team, something really hard to find, especially in a hurry. But, thanks to the White House, our talented team here in D.C., our network of first responders, and the DOD, we were able to transport and stand up just such a team in Mexico City before breakfast the next morning. I'm honored to be part of a network, which includes many of you, that can make something like that happen.

But, as we gather to mark World Humanitarian Day this year, we have to acknowledge that natural disaster responses no longer epitomizes today's humanitarian work. We still do that, to be sure, and I think we do it well. But, these days, we face vast other challenges all around the world.

Our humanitarian resources are increasingly being deployed, not for storms and quakes and the like, but for man-made disasters, from conflict-driven displacement to tyranny-driven economic collapse.

Our DARTs are more likely to be deployed for those types of crises, and by far, most of our humanitarian assistance dollars are being allocated for those kinds of needs. There's the ongoing tragedy in Syria, a horrific conflict in its seventh year and one of the most complex crises of our time. Over 13 million people, more than 80 percent of the current population, need humanitarian assistance. There's the ongoing struggle in Afghanistan, where 3.3 million people need humanitarian assistance. A recent upturn in violence has claimed 1,700 civilian lives this year alone.

A dozen or so years ago, I travelled to Afghanistan as a congressman. And, in those days, our presence was measured by the tens of thousands of military boots on the ground. These days, we still have some troops there, but our boots on the ground are increasingly humanitarian and development workers, some of whom have been back to work in Afghanistan two, three, and even four times.

Nine hundred aid workers have been killed in Afghanistan in the last decade.

There's South Sudan, the most dangerous place of all for humanitarian workers. Seven million people in South Sudan, including 1 million living on the brink of famine, depend on international assistance just to survive.

Then there are the man-made crises far closer to home. One of the most underreported catastrophes in the world today is what's happening in and around Venezuela. More than 2.3 million Venezuelans have already fled. It's the largest single mass exodus in the history of the Western Hemisphere. And it's ongoing. I saw this first hand when I visited Cucuta, in Colombia, and the Bolivar Bridge last month. Five thousand new migrants enter Colombia each and every day. They're desperately seeking food and emergency medical care. They're seeking survival.

This isn't merely Colombia's challenge. Venezuelans are fleeing to places like Brazil and Ecuador, as we read over the weekend, and northward to the Caribbean. The list of man-made, conflict-caused, and regime-driven humanitarian crises goes on and on. After all, there are roughly 70,000,000 displaced people in the world today.

Since humanitarian needs and crises are changing, we're doing our best our to change and to respond to them, with the best tools and ideas that we can find. We're applying lessons learned over and over again. And we're fostering innovation.

This past February, USAID and our British cousins, DFID, joined in launching the first-ever Humanitarian Grand Challenge. The Grand Challenge mechanism is a way for the world's best thinkers, from organizations large and small, for-profit and non-profit, business, academia, to offer new ideas in helping (inaudible) relief to the most vulnerable, hardest to reach communities in the world.

It's a chance for us to identify and invest in the best and the brightest. We've already received 615 applications from 86 different countries, including a third from women and nearly half from lower and middle income countries. We're excited to see and mobilize the results, and they're due out this fall.

Given how much of our humanitarian response is in conflict zones and fragile states, we're paying more attention than ever to the obstacles and challenges that factions, gangs, militias, and corrupt officials are throwing at relief teams. Case in point. In April of this year, a leading humanitarian agency reported that it had encountered no fewer than 70 checkpoints on the 300-mile trip from Aden to Sanaa, in Yemen. I'm sure those were just helpful citizens offering directions along the way.

But it's the kind of situation that caused us to launch the Strengthening Field Level Capacity on Humanitarian Access and Negotiations program last August.

It's aimed at helping relief team members better understand practical negotiation techniques and safe, effective field-level decision making.

Because there is nothing more important to us, nothing more important to me, than the safety and security of our humanitarian network, that's the area that we're especially focusing on. We must stay ahead of threats and potential threats. So we're supporting organizations dedicated to improving security standards and training for NGO staff. We're modifying our policy so that security, costs for equipment, staff, training and site enhancements can be more easily built into your contracts and grant budgets.

We're investing in new tools to help us map and minimize risk to operations at the most basic level, the level of, for example, moving food from a plane to a truck, to a warehouse and distribution center. But, let's face it: we can take every possible step to minimize risk. We can't make it go away.

And many of you here know that all too well. One of the most inspiring and humbling parts of my job is getting to meet the heroes who know the risks but carry on just because they care.

I saw firsthand, when I visited IDP camps just outside of Raqqa. I heard stories of challenges that humanitarian heroes face each day, as they strive to bring water and food and medical care to those who've been victimized by the years of conflict. With Assad's regime still holding sway in parts of the country, there's no real, legitimate government partner with whom to work. And their path is riddled with unexploded ordinance, which is going off at the rate of, roughly, three dozen per day.

The shelters they sleep in at night shake with the dropping of bombs each and every day. And yet, somehow, because of their commitment to others, they wake up the next morning and they do it all over again. These are the heroes that we hold high this World Humanitarian Day.

People like Iraq's Salam Muhammad. When Anbar and Kirkuk were liberated from ISIS at the end of last year, humanitarians were the first ones on the ground, providing food, water, and medical care. Iraq staff with the U.S.-funded NGO spend their days clearing mines and educating their neighbors about the dangers the ordinance poses.

Salam decided to joint this particular NGO after witnessing several tragedies that left some of his relatives and friends injured, or killed. He was one of the NGO's first recruits in Iraq. Every day is challenging for the de-miners; any accident can be fatal. But Salam and his staff love their jobs and show up for work every day filled with passion because they know what they're doing matters.

There's Jay Nash, a regional adviser who has lived and worked for USAID in the Democratic Republic of the Congo for the past 20 years. The DRC is, as you know, no stranger to aid worker attacks, with 210 people being killed, wounded, or kidnapped since 2000.

In 1999, while visiting a university in the DRC, Jay was ambushed by a mob of students who thought he was a spy for neighboring Rwanda. The mob torched the U.S. embassy vehicle he had been driving, but Jay escaped after a group of brave students made a ring around him, guarding him until they were able to duck him into the girls' dormitory.

Sitting in that dorm, trapped for hours with a mob threatening to break down the doors, Jay said he had one thought: he thought of the children with disabilities that he was helping in his free time. DRC has a higher than average rate of disability. And he thought to himself, if he died in that girls' dorm, who would take care of those kids?

After eight hours, he made a run for it, and he didn't look back. Not only did he stay in DRC working for USAID, in 2001, he started his own NGO called StandProud. It provides treatment and equipment to young people with disabilities, helping them gain dignity, mobility, and independence.

There's Fareed Noori, one of the victims of last month's attack on a government building in Jalalabad, Afghanistan. The blast killed 15 people. Fareed had been working in Afghanistan since 2010 for a USAID partner the International Rescue Committee, as a water, sanitation, and hygiene engineer. As his colleagues noted, whenever there was an emergency, Fareed was the first in the field to help with whatever was needed.

Fareed was in an emergency meeting at the time of the attack. He was killed doing the work of helping others, to which he had committed his life. Fareed leaves behind four children, two girls, two boys, all under the age of 9.

Another victim of that attack was Bakhtawara; it's a pseudonym, a bright and impressive 22-year-old woman. She was working for the International Organization for Migration, another USAID partner. She had married very early and had a child by the age of 16. But, despite being a young mother in a conservative community, she fought for her education and learned English. After school, she knew she wanted to help people. She convinced her family to let her, not just get job, but get a career as a humanitarian.

When her husband was killed in a bombing three years ago, she continued working as a 19-year-old single mother. Her job took her to the very government offices that were often targeted by insurgents. On the day she was killed, she was attending one of the meetings that she had hoped would help her find better ways to deliver aid to people in need. The building was bombed and then overrun with gunfire. She died doing what she focused her life on, helping people build a brighter future.

Extremist insurgents in Afghanistan like to target these workers. There's a special place in hell...

There's the story of the seven aid workers killed in South Sudan in March of this year. They were killed when their car was ambushed along the 185-mile route of the badly rutted roads in South Sudan's remote east. Their vehicle had been labeled as belonging to an NGO right down to the license plates. It didn't matter. Six of the seven worked for a small Sudanese NGO called the Grass Roots Empowerment and Development Organization, GREDO, which is supported by USAID and worked to promote sustainable development at the grassroots level.

Three of the victims were helping to build a youth center. Two taught English. One was also a driver and the father of a newborn. Three were new recruits. Humanitarian heroes, one and all. And there were thousands of others. And I stand in awe of what they do.

Final thoughts. Why do they do it? What causes them to go out and take these risks? I learned the answer, and (inaudible), when I visited Bangladesh and Burma with Secretary Pompeo earlier this year. In Bangladesh, I went to a Cox's Bazaar, and I saw the hundreds of thousands of Rohingya who are barely surviving in that camp.

They are vulnerable to monsoons and cyclones and without the humanitarian workers, life would be very different. It's bad enough already.

And then I went to Burma, and I travelled to an IDP camp near Sittwe. And what I saw there was the most disturbing thing I have ever seen in development. I saw young families trapped. I saw young families unable to go to school and completely dependent upon the emergency food assistance that we provide.

So, those workers take the risks because they are all that is standing between an even worse catastrophe and death in these young people, these victims. Today we celebrate them. Thank you.

MODERATOR: Thank you. (inaudible) I'm also the director of the Humanitarian Agenda, as Dan mentioned, which is what this event is a part of, it's a new partnership as as we have this conversation. Firstly, I want to ask you -- well, one, congratulations; it's been about a year now since you've been appointed, and you've been back one year? So, happy anniversary.

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Pretty close. Thank you -- ask my staff.

MODERATOR: (inaudible) We're all very happy that you were chosen to be in this position because, as Dan alluded to, your deep background in international developments. One of the things that you said a lot in this position is talking about, "The purpose of foreign aid is to end the need for its existence." It's one of your key messages that we hear time and time again. So, I want you to elaborate on sort of how that squares with humanitarian assistance. Right? There's a big difference of international developments for, you know, economic growth and being self-reliant. But humanitarian assistance is so often, as you mentioned, driven by tyranny and regimes, and it's about saving lives. So, how do you marry those two?

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Well, first off you're right. What I've said since the day that I was first announced is that the purpose of our foreign assistance must be ending its need to exist. And what I mean by that is, we should look every day at ways of helping people take on their own challenges. Not because we want to do less or walk away, but because we believe in human dignity, and we believe in the innate desire of everyone -- every individual, every family, every community, every country -- to want to craft their own bright future.

In the area of humanitarian assistance, what I always say is, look, we will always stand with people when crisis strikes because that is who we are, that is in the American DNA. But at the same time we'll also look for ways to foster resilience so that we can help countries and communities withstand future shocks. And we've seen promising results in places like Ethiopia. You mentioned on the food security front, Ethiopia's a country that's had six consecutive years of drought and yet not falling into full famine. And that obviously is about much more than the work we're doing, but I think we're making a difference in helping Ethiopians build their ability to withstand consecutive years of drought.

So, I see the two as fitting very well together, and the other piece to it is, on the humanitarian front, again, we have natural disasters and man-made disasters. The man-made disasters are coming at us fast and furious. It's also about preventing the next generation of crisis and conflict. I'm often asked what it is that keeps me up at night, and what keeps me up at night are our children being born in camps, and growing up in camps, and getting educated in camps. And when, God willing, the walls come down and the gate opens up, the question is, are those young people going to be prepared to take on the challenges of the world? Are they connected to the communities around them?

And so with the humanitarian work that we do in many of these places, it's really aimed towards the future. And so I think it fits in well; it's a longer term of view, but I see them -- really is all going in the same direction.

MODERATOR: I'm actually headed out to Nigeria in a few weeks and doing some research looking at Feed the Future portfolio there, but really looking at the nexus between that humanitarian and development assistance, you know, how that would work in an unstable environment. So, I'm anxious to see what I learn from that as well. You know, the Trump administration has called for reduction, of course, of U.S. foreign assistance, but, regardless of that, the U.S. continues to be -- and dominate as the largest donor worldwide.

When you're talking to your colleagues in this administration, what is it that you talk about in terms of why it's so important for us to sustain this leadership? I mean, I could throw out numbers and I'll do a little bit.

In 2018, the U.S. pledged 29 billion foreign assistance. Five billion of that was dedicated to humanitarian assistance. I was looking this morning at how that compares to others, and, I mean, the UK -we're event twice what they do. So, you know, we're such a leader in this space. Why is that so important? Why should we dedicate American tax dollars or more importantly to cleaning up other people's wars?

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Well, first off, you're correct; we're far and away the world's humanitarian leader, and, quite frankly, two or three or four of them together don't really add up to what we're doing. We need other countries to do more because, with those challenges that I laid out, those man-made challenges, I don't see an end in sight, quite frankly, in any of them. So, these are open-ended challenges, and while we are proud to be the world's leader, we need others to step up to the plate. I will tell you, what I worry about is, because these man-made disasters, man-made, often regime-driven disasters, because they are open-ended, there's a real risk that it will begin to take up so much of our budget that it threatens our ability to do some of the development investments that we all want to do, including quite frankly, some of the resilience work that we want to do.

So, we do need others to step up to the plate. But in terms of, you know, what I say to the rest of the administration, it's not a hard cell, you know, pushing them to open a door. The administration is very supportive of our humanitarian work; we continue to be the world's leader; that's not going to change. And I think it's really -- the arguments for it fall on a number of different fronts. Number one, this is an expression of American values. This is who we are and always have been. It is a projection of the American spirit, in my view. So, I think that is very much alive and well in the American psyche, in the American DNA.

But secondly, it's in our interest. Just take for a moment the assistance that we're providing to Colombians, supporting Venezuelans who have fled the border, doing the same thing in some other countries. There is great American self-interest in supporting the ability of these communities to withstand this migration, to help afford some of those costs, because the instability that results from not being able to provide support, I think, is an issue, is a diplomatic issue, is a national security issue. And, as you heard me mention, I think particularly what is happening in the Western Hemisphere is completely underreported.

When I was at the Summit of the Americas, I heard from a number of countries, including Caribbean states, that they were starting to feel the presence of Venezuelans fleeing. And while they're all supportive of their neighbors, clearly it's not without a cost. But the same thing is true in many other parts of the world. So, the investments that we make on the humanitarian front are oftentimes in our self-interest. I look at the work that we're doing on the humanitarian front with an eye towards providing a lifeline so that those who've been displaced in parts of the Middle East can return. That's in our interest. That's a stated foreign policy priority. So, you know, yes, there is certainly -- I think the morality that we -- the expression of values that we've always supported. But I also believe it's in our interest and our national security interest.

MODERATOR: And thank you for reminding us in your speech about humanitarian heroes and what World Humanitarian Day is about. You talked about the unfortunate situation that in today's crises a lot of the time aid workers are targeted specifically. So, I want to ask you whether you feel like there's an erosion of international humanitarian law over, you know, that you talked about the evolution of humanitarian assistance. And so as the world gets more and more disorderly, we see more and more protracted conflicts. Do you feel that both governments and non-state actors alike are violating this law, and is there anything that we can or should be doing more I guess, particularly from the donor or U.S. government perspective, to hold them more accountable?

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Well, first off, we in the U.S. demand adherence to international law, international humanitarian law. So, we demand that unfettered access is provided, for example, in Rakhine, in Northern Rakhine in Burma. So, that's always been important for us. But if you're asking whether some non-state actors like ISIS are breaking international law, yeah. Having been to both Raqqa and Northern Iraq, what has been done there by ISIS is truly evil. There is simply no other word to describe what they've done: the desecration of graves, the desecration of churches, the disappearances of Yazidis. It's staggering and truly evil. Of course they are breaking every standard that we all know.

Yes, it is a challenge to international law; one of the best ways that we can respond is to say that, and to say it often, and to keep coming back to it. Because I do think the American opinion matters. And to say all across the political spectrum here in this country that we stand united and demand adherence to those standards and that what is happening is unacceptable.

MODERATOR: You brought up demanding unfettered access. I want to let our audience know that the Humanitarian Agenda will be going to the capitol this fall, and we're focusing specifically on the issue of humanitarian access. You brought up, of course, in Yemen, that's 70 choke hold points that David Miliband also talked about when he was here in Yemen -- in April on Yemen. I also want to say we're publishing a policy piece on Yemen here at CSIS that will come out this week.

I have many more questions, but I think we'll turn to the audience, so that we can engage them as well. So, if you have a question, please raise your hand. We will take it in rounds of threes, so announce yourself and where you're from. Please keep it concise, and at the end of it, there should be a question mark. So, who has a question? Yes, sir, right over here. Thanks, gentlemen.

QUESTION: I'll ask a real fast question, my name is Rob, I work for USAID, thank you, sir. My question is about the environment, I'm just back from the Congo, where Ebola is happening and I was just in Madagascar where there was a plague outbreak. A lot of the disasters you talked about have an environmental component, and we're doing some in the United States, but some people think we really need to do more, and that's a little bit against maybe some people in the administration, so I would love for you to talk about your thoughts about that.

MODERATOR: Great question. More? Let's do Julie Howard right there.

QUESTION: Thank you. Mr. Administrator, thank you for your comments. Could you comment on the recent story in the Washington Post about the potential pullback of $3 billion in foreign assistance funds and how that may affect our ability to respond to humanitarian as well as the resilience opportunities you described?

MODERATOR: And, Julie, will you introduce yourself for those that don't know you?

QUESTION: Sorry?

MODERATOR: Would you introduce yourself?

QUESTION: Oh, yes, okay. So, I'm a non-resident senior adviser here at CSIS, thank you.

MODERATOR: Julie and I are also going to be travel partners when I go to Nigeria. It's actually Julie that is leading that study. Let's take one more question right back here. Yes, thank you.

QUESTION: Hi, my name's (inaudible) a reporter from Voice of America. There are a number of humanitarian assistance and also food aid to North Korea spended by the United States Government. What are the key principles that all the United States Government providing assistance to North Korea and under which scenario can assistance to North Korea be resumed?

MODERATOR: Thank you.

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Sure.

MODERATOR: Easy questions, right?

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: On North Korea, simply put, there have been no discussions that I'm aware of regarding assistance into North Korea. I certainly haven't been part of any such discussions.

Secondly, on the pullback, while we haven't received official notification of anything, I've heard of nothing that would change our status as the world's leader in humanitarian assistance. I haven't seen anything. Third, on -- first off, it's interesting that you visited Ebola country and you talked about conservation, because their linked, obviously.

I think that's one of the reasons we've seen the outbreak of Ebola in other formerly, entirely rare diseases in some of the areas where we've seen deforestation and such. What we're trying to do at USAID, many of you are aware, we're developing metrics that are aimed at helping us to better understand a country's capacity and commitment in a number of sectors, and conservation's one of them.

So, we're looking at things like biodiversity and how resources are managed, because we think it's important, and it's something that we hope to be able to incentivize in the future and have conversations around. I have a personal interest in the conservation front and as you know, we recently made some announcements regarding assistance to Colombia and helping them in their natural resource management. So, I think it's an important area that shouldn't be divorced from the rest of development.

We think it is one of those key areas that needs to be assessed and looked at as we help countries, in what we call, as you know, probably ad nauseam as I talk about the journey to self-reliance. One of those areas is, in fact, conservation, biodiversity, and the capacity to manage resources.

MODERATOR: Let's take another round of questions. Raise your hand high. Joel?

QUESTION: Joel (inaudible) from Norwegian Refugee Council, thank you Administrator Green for your excellent remarks. I'm afraid I have to follow up on the rescission question. We're not going to let you off so easily.

What's been reported is that there's going to be a cut of a billion to UN peacekeeping operations, and that has the potential to not only disrupt work in South Sudan and Somalia and the Congo, but it also has the potential to disrupt, through further chaos in refugee flows, neighboring countries that we care about that are our allies, such as Ethiopia, Uganda, Rwanda, and so on.

I guess -- the argument is that, even if USAID itself doesn't lose funding or doesn't lose out through the rescission, the work will lose out, I feel, if this really goes ahead. So, if you could just offer more thought on -- I mean, you said you're pushing on an open door when it comes to international work, and, honestly, it's not always obvious to see that from the outside. Thank you.

MODERATOR: Thanks, Joel. Let's do these two right here in the front, Haley, yep.

QUESTION: Thank you. Hi, good morning. Nicole (inaudible), I'm a senior associate here at CSIS. Thank you, Administrator Green, for your great comments. You mentioned briefly -- you touched on young people and so, given the disproportionate (inaudible) of people in these countries and how often humanitarian crises can disproportionately affect children and young people, can you talk a little bit more about some of the focus that you're keeping in these initiatives and on the work that you're doing to remedy the situation for youth? Thanks.

MODERATOR: Great, and I think there was a question right behind you if there still is, yeah.

QUESTION: Hello, my name is Jessica (inaudible), and I'm a Jeane Kirkpatrick Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. You mention in your remarks about the man-made nature of a lot of the ongoing conflicts, and I was wondering if you could speak to USAID's role not only in providing humanitarian response in that context, but also the active role that the agency is taking in countering and preventing ongoing violent extremism.

MODERATOR: Great question.

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: That's a great question. Joel, on the budget front, I really don't have much more that I can provide. Part of it is I'm not attempting to duck, I just literally don't have more, I'd refer you to OMB quite frankly. But again, you know, they is simply looking at the numbers of the last year and what we're doing on the humanitarian front. There is simply no argument that we have backed away from our role as the world's leading humanitarian assistant. Just objectively, we are far and away the largest humanitarian donor.

We're the largest humanitarian donor in Syria; we're the largest humanitarian donor in conflict after conflict. I do think it is fair for all of us to talk about how it is that these resource needs can be met in the future. I don't mean just the immediate future, but the open-ended nature of these conflicts and this instability and this displacement is staggering.

It is what worries me, because these conflicts that we're seeing -- South Sudan; Yemen -- you and I have talked about Yemen a great deal in recent months. It's open-ended, and I do worry about that. I do worry about our ability to meet resource needs and, you know, the world meeting these resource needs. They're significant.

On the question of young people, particularly in displaced settings, we are looking at a number of ways of accelerating crisis situation education, conflict community education. We've received generous support from Congress, along with generous directives from Congress, in the area of education. What we've been trying to do, and Congresswoman Lowey has long been a great leader on this front, is to try to make sure that we are able to prioritize these crisis needs, and I do think that it's a crisis. It does worry me a great deal.

So, we're looking at some of the use of innovative technologies to see if that can help us in these settings, but it is a very focus and as we develop our basic education strategy going forward, I think you'll see a particular focus on those areas, because it is, as you suggest, very important for the future.

In terms of preventing violent extremism, we have, as you know, an important role under the National Security Strategy. We are investing in trying to identify the drivers of violent extremism.

One of my strong beliefs that comes, actually, from my time at International Republican Institute is that we shouldn't jump to conclusions and try to draw global assumptions and lessons. Instead, we need to look at local drivers. Experience shows us that it's often local drivers, community drivers that become flashpoints for extremism. And so, we're certainly investing research there, and some of the preventative tools that are there; from my days as an Ambassador in Tanzania, I often point out that after the terrible bombing, embassy bombing, the work that we did with our Tanzanian partners in the wake of that, to take on some of the drivers of poverty and despair, I believe was an important down payment for preventing violent extremism. So, I'm a big believer in tackling those drivers and tackling that which can lead to despair. So, that will always be a key part of our work.

MODERATOR: Mr. Green, at Davos this year, you talked about the importance of tapping into the creativity of the private sector, and how innovative financing mechanisms and other innovative technologies can really create better development outcomes. In your speech today, you talked about the Humanitarian Grand Challenges. Are there any specific companies or partnerships or technologies that you're most excited about right now. The things that you see that are happening in the field, you've been in in this career -- I mean, you've had a career for decades that are all related to development --

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Don't say decades.

MODERATOR: Okay, sorry -- you're very young. The last year that you've been an administrator, what are the -- what are the cool, new technologies that we should know about, that are out there, that the mainstream audience has no idea how we're delivering (inaudible) humanitarian assistance?

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Yeah, I mean, to be honest, there are countless. During global innovation we -- which we had last fall, whenever it was, and I had a chance to walk through the marketplace at the Ronald Reagan Building, and take a look at some of the innovations. Everything from lunchbox-size solar batteries allowing us to power work in refugee and displaced persons camps to some of the weather forecasting stations that are created with 3D printers. You go through there and it's extraordinary. And it fills you with great hope for our ability to reach out and touch more people in more settings than ever before. In the area of financing -- we announced in India last fall, the world's first Development Impact Bond for maternal and child health, and the largest development impact bond of its kind. So, what we did through that is to set outcomes that we needed to see in order to repay the investment, but in terms of the means, we turn the private sector loose.

And in the follow-up conversations that we had, you can see that our partners, some of whom are based here in D.C., were terribly excited. Because for the first time they didn't have us micro-managing each step along the way, but saying, "Look, these are the outcomes that we need, you go get them." And really tapping into the private sector, nonprofit and for-profit. Also, in the area of displaced communities on World Humanitarian Day, the use of biometrics to establish identification of refugees and IDPs as well as some of the digital technologies for delivering resources -- assistance so that recipients have modest purchasing power in surrounding communities, thereby not only providing assistance, not only holding onto human dignity and allowing them to make some decisions, but also providing a tangible benefit to those host communities which are often placing a disproportionate burden by those who are there. So, it -- it's really using business principles, human nature, and I'd like to say there are new technologies, but my kids will tell me very quickly they're old technologies, just new to someone like me. Tapping into these, I think, creates enormous, enormous hope for reaching into places we haven't before.

MODERATOR: I want to continue on that "hope" trend for a minute. So, you know, when you think about the crises, many of which are located in Syria, Yemen, in South Sudan --

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Is that the whole part?

MODERATOR: Now, I know. Well, this is where I'm kind of heading with this. Is there a crisis that you have your eyes on that you do see any reversal in terms of reversal trends, or any progress? Is there a place that you do think we're going to be able to see some positive outcomes in the next -- I should say decade there, because I know it takes time. But is there one that you see not going the wrong direction?

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Oh, sure. There are lots of promising stories. I think Ethiopia and Eritrea provide tremendous hope. One of the challenges, again, as an old democracy guy, one of the challenges that I saw was the enabling environment, for civil society and NGOs in a place like Ethiopia, and with the transition to a new government, we're having conversations that we didn't have before, in ways that I think will be very helpful. Also, I think that their willingness to partner with us more and more will help us make some investments in those areas -- in those resilience areas that will not only help Ethiopia and Eritrea, but also, quite frankly, I think will save us money in the long run. So, there are lots of stories like that, I think all around the continent of Africa and elsewhere. But there are -- every hopeful story is replaced by a new challenge. None of these challenges are inevitable, as problems. But they do require us to be innovative. They do require us to be engaged, they do require us to invest up front, and to be innovative in those procuring methods and how we partner. All of those things need to be done if we're going to turn -- either prevent the challenges from becoming crises, or turn problems into solutions.

MODERATOR: Thank you. I lived in Ethiopia for three years, and I have to say it's quite exciting to see the change that's happening there. I'd like to just turn it onto -- are there any more burning questions? No hands are shooting up; let's do one more right here in the front.

QUESTION: Hi, this is Chris (inaudible) with the State Department. Thank you so much for your leadership of USAID and development. I have a question regarding the nexus between humanitarian assistance, you've been mentioning the nexus with conflict development stabilization -- how does humanitarian assistance fit in, or is it just a one piece element that is disassociated from political issues?

MODERATOR: Great, and as you answer that and any other final remarks you'd like to make as well.

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN: Sure. Thank you and again, thanks to all of you. So I think from the National Security Strategy, you see -- also the Stabilization Assistance Review, you see, I think, a clear multi-agency, multi-department approach to many of these challenges. Our relationship with the State Department is as close as it's ever been. I've received nothing but support and affirmation from Secretary Pompeo. We are working, as you know, closely because all of these challenges touch each of us in different ways and we each have different capacities.

You know, I think it's probably never been more clear than in a place like the Burma-Bangladesh crisis. So, you know, when Rohingya in one place their IDPs and when they're in another place, they're refugees, and then of course we all look at that and say, "forget the labels, they're people who we need to help out," and invest in, and so we do. Also, I would say that both State and AID have as close of a working relationship with DoD as we've had in a very long time. As many of you know, we have a couple dozen detailees over at the Pentagon and the Combatant Commands. DoD has made it clear that they don't want to do what we do or State does, and we certainly don't want to do what they do. So, I would think those seamless teams and close communications are helping us. And going back to the budget question, they have to; there's not enough money for duplication. There's not enough money for bureaucracy. We just have to stay in constant communication.

As to (inaudible) final remarks, I really would like to leave off with where my remarks, my opening remarks left off -- or left off. On this World Humanitarian Day, I would ask that we all think of those men and women who are in places in far places in world, in conflict zones, in fragile settings, day after day, delivering emergency medical assistance, food assistance, water and hygiene under the most trying of circumstances, difficult security situations. They do it because they care. They're my heroes. I'm sure they're your heroes. They are patriots. And what a wonderful expression of values and our priorities that with what they're doing each and every day. Thank you.


          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

North Korea slams door on Japan PM Abe visit, calls him a ‘moron’

 Cache   

SEOUL: North Korea on Thursday (Nov 7) called Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a moron who should ..

The post North Korea slams door on Japan PM Abe visit, calls him a ‘moron’ appeared first on japan daily sun.


          

Seoul deports North Koreans accused of killing 16 people

 Cache   
Authorities say the two men had killed 16 fellow fishermen on their boat and then fled to South Korea.
          

Re: Re:

 Cache   

"Yes you are correct - it is most proper for the people of Hong Kong to be murdered, tortured and beaten by their government."

Hardly correct. I'm guessing you're responding to a troll there.
China is duly on record for being an oppressive autocratic dictatorship. For good and valid reason.

But it has to be said that the people of hong kong have known for a generation the exact date and hour at which point their human rights and democracy would be abolished. They should have known that protests would in the future result in beatings, incarceration, torture and possibly murder.

I sort of have to question the sanity of those who chose to stay on land leased for a defined amount of time in the belief that once the lease expired their landlord would treat them any other way than he treated his other tenants.

Rough as it sounds Hong Kong is not their home. It never was, really. It's a slice of China which the opium cartels of the 18th century forcibly rented Godfather-style. It was always going back to China, and the chinese government will go to VINDICTIVE lengths to ensure full closure on what the chinese call the "Century of Humiliation".

If I knew that in thirty years the place I live would become part of North korea under kim Jong Un I'd ensure to be elsewhere. I wouldn't buy a new house here, take out big loans, build my career locally, sink down roots, or god forbid raise children here.

The people of hong Kong did all of that. And now they protest, in what ought to be the full knowledge that China will cheerfully ship every last one of them to a dissident work camp to never be heard from again.

Abuse and oppression are never proper. At the same time, however, I have a very hard time mustering much sympathy for the self-destructively stupid.


          

‘제재대상’ 北만수대창작사 그림,인터넷에서 고가판매돼

 Cache   
유엔 안전보장이사회가 대북제재 명단에 올린 북한 ‘만수대창작사’의 그림 등 고가의 예술 작품들이 중국과 이탈리아의 인터넷 웹사이트에서 버젓이 고가에 판매되고 있는 것으로 확인됐다. 6일(현지시간) 자유아시아방송(RFA)은 중국 단둥 진차오미술관 웹사이트를 조사해 본 결과, 만수대창작사 소속 인민예술가로 불리는 리창 작가의 ‘금봉도’, 만수대창작사 소속 오영길 작가의 ‘눈내리는 만수대거리 야경’, 평양미술대 학부장을 역임한 박진수 작가의 ‘자화상’ 등 만수대창작사 작품 다수가 판매되고 있었다고 보도했다. 이 작품들은 대부분 작품의 가격은 정해져 있지 않고, ‘협상 가격’이라고 책정돼있어 고가에 판매되는 것으로 추정된다. 중국 진차오미술관 뿐만 아니라 영문으로 된 ‘북한 예술 갤러리’(North Korean Art Gallery) 웹사이트에서도 만수대창작사 그림이 버젓이 판매되고 있다. RFA에 따르면, 이 웹사이트가 소개한 구입방법에는 이탈리아 회사가 만수대창작사 예술작품을 판매하는 것이기 때문
          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

11/06 Links Pt2: US Jewish umbrella group slams Democratic hopefuls’ calls to leverage Israel aid; Jews lobby non-Jews to browbeat Jews – what do you call that?

 Cache   
From Ian:

Noah Pollak: Leading Democrats Call for Conditioning Military Aid to Israel
The United States could have responded to Arab antagonism by following the European playbook and squeezed Israel for concessions. But American strategists realized the best way to stop the wars wasn't to make Israel feel less secure, but rather to make Israel less defeatable.

The U.S. military aid that started in earnest in the form of an emergency arms resupply during the 1973 war has been perhaps the single-most effective U.S. policy toward the Middle East in the past half-century. With America now in Israel's corner, the Arab states were compelled to abandon the fantasy of wiping the Jewish State off the map. That led to what had previously been unthinkable: Egypt signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1979, and Jordan followed in 1994.

Other benefits to the United States flowed from military aid to Israel: With the Jewish state now fielding advanced U.S. weaponry against Arab states, which were armed with inferior Soviet weapons, regional skirmishes were turned into devastating morale-killers for Moscow. In one air campaign in June 1982, Israeli-piloted F-15s and F-16s shot down 88 Syrian-piloted Soviet MiGs. Israel lost a single F-16. Battles like this clarified for the world which side was likely to prevail in the Cold War.

Today, Gulf Arab states are drawing closer to an increasingly powerful Israel, seeking protection from Iran—another way in which U.S. military aid, which maintains Israel's "qualitative military edge" in the region, is promoting American interests and decreasing the likelihood that the United States will be called upon to directly protect regional allies.

Warren, Sanders, and Buttigieg did not acknowledge this history, or these strategic benefits. Since the progressive activists of the Democratic Party view Israel largely through the lens of the Palestinians, it was only a matter of time before they began to demand that all aspects of the U.S.-Israel relationship be subordinated to the politics of that issue.
US Jewish umbrella group slams Democratic hopefuls’ calls to leverage Israel aid
An umbrella group of more than 50 Jewish organizations from across the ideological spectrum condemned calls by Democratic presidential candidates to condition military aid to Israel on its approach to making peace with the Palestinians.

“We are deeply troubled by recent statements that would place conditions, limitations, or restrictions on the US security assistance provided to Israel, so vital for the defense and security of the country, the protection of essential US interests, and stability in the region,” Arthur Stark, chairman, and Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice chairman/CEO, of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations said in a statement issued Friday.

“This approach would harm American objectives in the Middle East and would undermine the ability of our key ally to defend itself against the threats it faces on all its borders.”

Sens. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, along with Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana, recently have indicated a willingness to use American aid to force policy changes by Israel regarding the Palestinian conflict, including halting settlement construction.
U.S.-Israel Security Cooperation Is A Win-Win
Not a single American serviceperson needs to be stationed in Israel. Aside from training missions, there have been American soldiers stationed in Israel since 2009, only working with the American/Israeli co-designed X-band radar system — a deployment that helps the U.S. and Israel monitor threats from the east.

Israel’s missile defense capabilities — developed and produced in conjunction with American industry — not only protect Israel from Hamas and Hezbollah missiles, but protect the United States from emerging threats from North Korea and Iran. Various branches of the U.S. military have purchased a variety of Israeli-developed systems and participated in joint development of anti-tunnel defenses, the Arrow Missile Program, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Plane, THEL Laser Program, the Advanced Urban Combat Training Facility, as well as Iron Dome.

Israel has been a partner in U.S. and multi-lateral military exercises for years; interestingly, Israel and the United Arab Emirates flew together in one. Combined exercises have taken place on NATO territory, in the U.S., in Israel (where the Luftwaffe flew above Israeli territory, making a few people blink), and the Pacific Ocean. Not a single country has opted out due to Israel having opted in.

The two countries are drawn together by common values and common threats. The bipartisan support of our ally Israel has been a testament to those values, as well as to the practical recognition that the threats require cooperation in intelligence, technology, and security policy.

The volatility of the Middle East is unlikely to be constrained. The United States, desirous of removing its soldiers from the region even as it understands the risk attendant to a resurgent Russia and increasingly desperate Iran, is as much in need of capable allies now as it ever was. It would be a shame if rampant J Street politicization of the relationship were allowed to do damage.



MEMRI: Article On Muslim Brotherhood Website: Election Of A Gay U.S. President Will Lead To Pressure On Arab Countries To Permit Homosexuality; The Prophet Muhammad Ordered The Killing Of Homosexuals
In an October 7, 2019 article on the website of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, Egyptian journalist and Muslim Brotherhood (MB) member Amer Shamakh wrote about the growing support for the LGBTQ community and same-sex marriage in the West, and in the U.S. in particular. Calling them "perversion" that is contrary to human nature and the monotheistic religions, he warned that if potential Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg became president, this would lead to a campaign of pressure on Arab countries to accept the LGBTQ community as normal, as it is perceived today in the West. Expressing concern that Arab leaders would capitulate to such pressure, he underlined that Islam views homosexuality as "one of the most loathsome deeds," that "Islamic law instructs that those who carry it out be killed by burning, being thrown from a high place, or stoning," and that the Prophet Muhammad himself even ordered that this be done.

Below are excerpts from Shamakh's article:
"After the world has experienced an extremist U.S. president who alarmed the world, especially the Muslims, with his madness and his strange decisions, it may in the future experience another [kind of] U.S. president: a gay one... The official U.S. candidate [sic] for the 2020 presidential election is 37-year-old Pete Buttigieg, a Democrat, who is currently mayor of South Bend, Indiana. He has been married for a year to his partner Justin, and the two have now declared that they want to start a family!

"This pervert wishes to gain the votes of his fellow [LGBTQ] Americans, whose number has increased many times over in [the past] 25 years. Surveys indicate that during this period the number of Americans who support homosexuality increased fivefold, the number of homosexuals in U.S. society rose from 3% in 1990 to 20% in 2014, and the number of those favoring marriage among these perverts rose from 11% in 1990 to 49% in 2014. This means that 20% of Americans are gay, and that 50% of Americans support the gay 20% and recognize them [as legitimate], in spite of their crime that contravenes human nature... and does not exist even among animals.
Tony Blair says Labour antisemitism is “killing the Party” but stops short of saying he won’t vote for Corbyn
Tony Blair has said that Labour’s antisemitism scandal is “absolutely killing the Party”, but stopped short of declaring that he would not vote for the Party in the coming election.

The former Prime Minister made the remarks at a dinner at the Board of Deputies, and said that he anticipates a “complete battle” in Labour between its moderate and radical wings.

Although Mr Blair expressed confidence that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn would not win the election, when asked if he himself would vote tactically he replied: “I can’t”.

Mr Blair insisted that “there are really good Labour MPs that are standing in this election. People I know, people I’ve worked with. People who have stood up very strongly on antisemitism in the Labour Party and I want to see them supported.”

Left-wing antisemitism, Mr Blair explained, is “not limited to a few bad apples” but rather is a “phenomenon”, and complained about those who are “obsessed with a hatred of Israel”, noting that he is “having more reasonable conversations about Israel with some of the Arab states than I am back home with parts of the Left.”


Disgraced MP Chris Williamson barred from standing as a candidate in forthcoming general election
It understood that the disgraced MP, Chris Williamson, will not be permitted to stand as a candidate for the Labour Party in the coming general election in Derby North.

Mr Williamson is best known for baiting Jews by dismissing allegations of antisemitism as “proxy wars and bulls***” whilst supporting Labour activists like Marc Wadsworth and Jackie Walker who were expelled from the Party over their comments. He has been suspended by Labour three times (although the second suspension was overturned by the High Court).

He has been on suspension while his case is reviewed yet again by the Party, and it has now emerged that the Labour Party has barred him from standing in the general election as a candidate for the Party. Suspended members are usually unable to stand as candidates.

In an interview yesterday on LBC, the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, John McDonnell, refused to distance himself from Mr Williamson. When asked by host Iain Dale whether he wants Mr Williamson to be a candidate in the general election, Mr McDonnelll said that Mr Williamson’s case is currently under consideration and therefore he would not wish to say anything that might prejudice the case. To this Mr Dale responded: “the right answer to that question was ‘no’.”
Diane Abbott: Not all Jews think Corbyn is an anti-Semite
Boris Johnson’s election campaign has got off to a dismal start but it seems Labour is determined to catch up. Diane Abbott appeared on the Today programme this morning to discuss her party’s anti-Semitism problem. But Mr S isn’t convinced her defence will convince many voters that things are all OK:

Nick Robinson: Do you accept you haven’t done enough (to resolve the problem of anti-Semitism)?

Diane Abbott: ‘…it’s not every element of the Jewish community that believes Jeremy is an anti-Semite.’

NR: ‘Well every major Jewish newspaper says it, every major Jewish representative body says it.’

DA: ‘Yeah, well, the Hasidic community in Stamford Hill doesn’t say that…’

Hardly a vote-winning pitch to worried Jewish voters…
Gil Troy: Jews lobby non-Jews to browbeat Jews – what do you call that?
Thank you, Jeremy Ben-Ami, Bernie Sanders and J Street’s conventioneers. At J Street’s recent conference, they ended their charade. J Street is not the “pro-Israel, pro-peace” movement it long pretended to be; it’s the anti-occupation lobby, lacking nuance, balance and any ability to criticize Palestinians.

Sanders’ words brought a different clarity: Any Jew who donates to this bash-Israel-firster has no heart; any American who donates to this socialist-for-thee-but-not-for-me has no brain.

I’m responding to Sanders “as a Jew,” because he tried insulating himself from criticism by playing what the British novelist Howard Jacobson calls the “asaJew” card. “It’s going to be very hard for anybody to call me – whose father’s family was wiped out by Hitler, who spent time in Israel – an antisemite,” Sanders said. Don’t call him an antisemite, just a disloyal fool. He thrills antisemites like Ilhan Omar, who endorsed him, while emboldening murderous anti-Zionists leading Hamas and the Palestinian Authority.

This American Jewish Corbynite is spearheading J Street’s campaign to browbeat Democratic candidates, demanding they use American aid to Israel as a battering ram, blackmailing Israel into making policy moves most Israelis have learned would harm them, their country and their region.

That follows the policy Ben-Ami championed at the conference: bullying candidates to buy into J Street’s occupation preoccupation of bullying Israel. Reducing the complicated, multidimensional Israel-Palestinian conflict to this simplistic “end the occupation” slogan makes as much sense as Republicans yelling “cut taxes” as an economic and social cure-all. Life is messier.

I know that doubting someone’s loyalty risks discouraging debate, but what else do you call it? Isn’t it disloyal for a Jew to emphasize his Jewishness as he urges non-Jews to blackmail the Jewish state to do things that would embolden Jew-haters and get many Jews killed?


Jewish Orgs Claim ‘Trump Endangers Jews,’ Despite Synagogue Shooters Hating His Jewish Ties
On Wednesday, activists from two left-wing Jewish organizations, Bend the Arc: Jewish Action and IfNotNow, interrupted a speech by President Trump in Pittsburgh to blame him for the attack on the Tree of Life synagogue.

In a video posted by IfNotNow, a group primarily known for its boycott of Birthright trips, activists can be heard screaming, “Trump endangers Jews!” According to IfNotNow’s Facebook post, the activists disrupted Trump’s speech “one year after he incited the deadliest attack on Jews in US history.”

Tree of Life synagogue shooter Robert Bowers actually hated Trump because of his Jewish family and his perceived fondness for Jews. By blaming Trump for the attack on Jews, left-wing Jewish activists are actually—if one uses their logic—blaming the victim.

Social media posts by Bowers reveal that he despised Trump. His social media posts include deeply offensive slurs in reference to Jews, comments about how he has never voted for Trump nor owned “a maga hat,” and posts depicting Trump as being supposedly controlled by Jews:


These social media posts have been referenced by mainstream news outlets, although they have not prevented Jewish activists (and even Linda Sarsour) from blaming Trump for the shooting in their social media commentary. (h/t Comrade FAILexa, Communistan)

Jewish, Pro-Israel Groups Raise Alarm Over Upcoming Anti-Israel Event at University of Massachusetts
Eighty-four Jewish and pro-Israel groups signed an open letter to Chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Kumble Subbaswamy raising alarm over an upcoming anti-Israel event that the letter charges will be a purely political and extremist gathering that should not have UMass sponsorship.

The missive addresses an event called “Criminalizing Dissent: The Attack on BDS & American Democracy.” The organizers say it will “address accelerating efforts by US political leaders, pro-Israel lobbying groups, and college and university administrators to silence, smear, and criminalize supporters of BDS, a nonviolent movement that aims to hold Israel accountable for its ongoing human rights abuses and its illegal 50-year occupation of Palestinian land.”

Among the slated speakers are political activist Linda Sarsour, academic Cornel West and BDS movement leader Omar Barghouti, all known for their vehement anti-Israel views.

The letter notes that a previous such petition was sent to Chancellor Subbaswamy regarding a similar event in May called, “Not Backing Down: Israel, Free Speech, & the Battle for Palestinian Rights,” to which the upcoming event bills itself as a “follow up.”

The May event featured Sarsour, along with other prominent anti-Israel figures Roger Waters and Marc Lamont Hill.

The letter said that past statements of these activists “draw on classic antisemitic tropes.”


An Open Letter to UMass Professors Who Support BDS
Below is an open letter to the faculty members who signed a pro-BDS letter to University of Massachusetts Amherst Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy:

We do not know whether you signed the letter because you are knowledgeable on the issue, or you are just trusting the colleague who encouraged you to “be one of the good guys” and sign. If you are of the latter, allow us to address you.

This is indeed about freedom of speech, and about both sides speaking. It is just the opposite of what the document you signed claims. It is not the Jews who are trying to shut down criticism of Israel. Only someone who knows nothing about Israel or is a dedicated enemy can say such a thing with a straight face. No country on the planet has so high a level of internal public critical discussion. Everyone criticizes Israel, including Israelis and Jews. What the Jews who support Israel find really offensive is the moral sadism of calling them Nazis or having people from far more prejudiced, if not racist, cultures call this astoundingly tolerant polity “racist.”

It is not the Jews who support Israel who are preventing discussions on what is going on in the Middle East or shutting down criticism of Israel; it is those who support the BDS movement, for whom any exchange with an Israel-supporter is considered unacceptable. It is not pro-Israel Jews who are pushing “cancel culture” with shouting and violence; it is BDS promoters. According to the BDS narrative, Israel is an irredeemable evil — like the Nazis or white supremacists — with whom no compromise can be made. As runs their chant: “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”

Do you really think that Palestinian sovereignty over “every inch of the land” will bring freedom? For anyone? Even Muslims?
Ecstatic Ariel Gold Announces Acceptance into ISIS (satire)
Days after returning from Iran, Code Pink national co-director Ariel Gold announced on Twitter that she has also been accepted into the Islamic State to lead the country’s Jewish outreach program.

“I spoke to ISIS President Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi, and it turns out he has the exact same opinion about Jews and Israel as I do!” Gold tweeted. “And to think that some people call him anti-Semitic.”

Gold promised to “keep an open mind” as she met with ISIS leaders and toured the scattered remains of the once-vast caliphate. She even agreed to participate in the execution of a young Yazidi woman.

“This girl claims that she’s being executed because her burka didn’t cover her ankles, but al-Hashimi told me she’s, like, totally a Zionist,” Gold said.

Along with her excitement at the prospect of meeting ISIS leaders, Gold said that she is hopeful that her trip may lead to new opportunities.

“If ISIS really likes me, maybe I can also be a Bernie Sanders surrogate,” she said.
German journalist to be awarded prize for combating antisemitism
The European Janusz Korczak Academy will present Dr. Mathias Döpfner, CEO of Berlin-based media group Axel Springer SE and president of the Federation of German Newspaper Publishers, with a prestigious award on Thursday to recognize his efforts to combat antisemitism and preserve human dignity.

The Korczak Prize for Humanism is awarded biannually to individuals by the academy, founded by the Jewish Agency, for their outstanding contributions to advancing tolerance, human rights and the fight against racism and hatred.

Döpfner, the head of Germany’s largest publishing house, has been hailed for his vocal opposition to antisemitism in Germany and abroad, and his efforts to boost ties between Germany and the State of Israel.

In May, leading German daily newspaper Bild – the largest brand published by Axel Springer – printed a cut-out kippah on its front page. The move followed comments made by Germany’s government commissioner on antisemitism that Jews should sometimes remove their kippah in order to avoid racist attacks.

The ceremony in Berlin will be attended by Jewish Agency Chairman Isaac Herzog, who is visiting Germany almost one month after an armed attack at a synagogue in Halle on Yom Kippur and ahead of the 81st anniversary of Kristallnacht.

Herzog’s visit also follows the approval earlier this week of a decade-long strategic plan by the Jewish Agency to address rising antisemitism across the globe.
BBC’s UK reporting hindered by its own record on Gaza casualties
That will of course come as no surprise to anyone familiar with the BBC’s own track record on the subject. Over five years after that conflict there is still no evidence of the BBC having ever independently verified the civilian/combatant casualty ratios which it continues to promote.

Instead, as noted here in the past, the BBC quotes figures attributed to “the UN” which are in fact sourced from the controversial report commissioned by the UN Human Rights Council more than a month before the conflict ended (originally headed by William Schabas) that was published in June 2015.

A close look at that report’s methodology shows that the Hamas-run “Ministry of Health in Gaza” is one source of the report’s data, together with the UNOCHA “Protection Cluster”. As has been noted here previously, that “Protection Cluster” includes political NGOs, some of which also have a financial relationship with UNOCHA.

And so, with the BBC having spent over five years amplifying casualty figures and debatable civilian/combatant casualty ratios supplied by Hamas and NGOs involved in ‘lawfare’ campaigning against Israel that were funnelled through a UN agency and subsequently promoted in a controversial and biased UNHRC report, it is hardly surprising that the corporation’s journalists are incapable of informing their domestic audiences that according to studies, a significant proportion of the Palestinians killed in Operation Protective Edge were terrorist operatives.

Also notable is the fact that although this BBC report is based on an article published by the Jewish Chronicle which notes Ms Sultana’s prior connections to the controversial advocacy group MEND (see p21 – 30 here), the BBC apparently did not consider it necessary to communicate that information to its ‘Coventry & Warwickshire’ audiences.
Haaretz Vs. Haaretz Are Reasons for Khalida Jarrar’s 2017 Arrest Classified
In recent articles, Haaretz has alleged that the reasons for the 2017 arrest of Khalida Jarrar, a former Palestinian lawmaker who was arrested again last week, are “still classified” despite the fact that Haaretz itself reported those very reasons at the time of the arrest. Most recently, a Nov. 4 page 2 print edition story by Jack Khoury entitled “Israel arrests PA J’lem Affairs minister for third time,” erred:

In February, Jarrar was released after 20 months of administrative detention without trial. The reasons for her previous arrest are still classified.

The identical error appeared in the Oct. 31 digital article entitled “Israel Arrests Ex-Palestinian Lawmaker, Only Eight Months After Her Release From Prison“.

In fact, the reasons for her previous 20 months of administrative detention, which lasted from July 2017 until February 2019, are not classified, and Haaretz itself has reported them.
Reuters Errs on Administrative Detention For 'Anti-Israel Activity'
A Reuters article today egregiously misrepresents administrative detention, erroneously asserting that it is mainly applied to "Palestinians suspected of anti-Israeli activities," when in fact the Israeli practice applies in cases of suspected security offenses. The Nov 4. article ("Jordan says two citizens held in Israel to return 'before the end of the week'") errs:
Israel mainly uses “administrative detention”, or imprisonment without trial, against Palestinians suspected of anti-Israeli activities.

The identical error also appears in this earlier Oct. 29 article.

Israel does not mainly use administrative detention against Palestinians suspected of "anti-Israeli activities" generally. Rather, the measure may only be applied in cases of suspicion regarding security-related offenses.

Thus, B'Tselem, an NGO highly critical of Israeli government policies and activity in the West Bank, explains:
In the West Bank (not including East Jerusalem), administrative detention is carried out under the Order regarding Security Provisions. The order empowers the military commander of the West Bank, or another commander to whom the power has been delegated, to place individuals in administrative detention for up to six months at a time, if the commander has “reasonable grounds to believe that reasons of regional security or public security require that a certain person be held in detention”.
Latest Antisemitic Attacks in Borough Park Underline Grim Challenges Facing Orthodox Jews in Brooklyn
As the New York City Police Department announced on Tuesday that its hate crimes unit was investigating a series of attacks last Friday night against Orthodox Jews in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn, a prominent leader of the community warned that the ongoing threat of antisemitic violence meant that “people in some neighborhoods are scared to leave their houses.”

Speaking to The Algemeiner on Tuesday, Rabbi Yaacov Behrman — the founder of the Brooklyn-based Jewish Future Alliance — said that the spate of attacks over the last two years against Orthodox Jews in the Williamsburg, Crown Heights and Borough Park neighborhoods were overwhelmingly perceived within the community as being spurred by antisemitic malice.

“People’s feelings are important, and the community sees this as antisemitic,” Berhman said. “There are these constant attacks on Jewish individuals in which no money is stolen, and where there seems to be no motivation other than to attack Jews.”

The latest incidents were registered last Friday night, with three separate attacks in Borough Park that involved the same passenger car over a five-block radius. Security cameras captured each incident, in which several men jumped out of the car to chase Jewish men and boys. In one incident, a Jewish man was punched and beaten after the group pinned him against another vehicle with their car.

More than half of the hate crimes reported in New York City this year have been antisemitic in nature, with over 150 incidents targeting Jews — a rise of 63 percent in the previous year, according to figures released by the NYPD in September.
Synagogue President: Gun-Free Zones Are 'Asinine'




German Far-Right Leader Stirs Controversy With Antisemitic ‘Judas’ Tweet Aimed at Popular Musician
A leading parliamentarian with the far-right “Alternative for Germany” (AfD) party faced heavy criticism on Monday after he deployed a notorious antisemitic trope in a social media attack on one of Germany’s top recording artists.

Several politicians are demanding the resignation of AfD representative Stephan Brandner from his role as chair of the Legal Committee of the Bundestag, Germany’s federal parliament, following a tweet last Thursday in which he invoked the Biblical figure of Judas Iscariot — according to Christian tradition, the disciple who betrayed Jesus to the Roman authorities in exchange for financial gain, while remaining a devout Jew. The representation of Judas as emblematic of inherent Jewish deceitfulness became popular in Europe during the Middle Ages.

Brandner’s tweet was aimed at one of Germany’s most popular musicians, Udo Lindenberg, who was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit on Oct. 2 by the German government. Known for his opposition to the former Soviet satellite regime in East Germany, Lindenberg has more recently voiced concerns about the growing appeal of the far right.

In a Facebook post commenting on the surge in support for the AfD in regional elections last month, Lindenberg wrote, “Do you not see the same old-new slogans on the walls of the houses?” In the same post, he described Björn Höcke — one of the AfD’s most influential regional leaders — as “a real fascist, resurrected from the ruins and facing towards the Nazis.”

In his condemnation of Lindenberg, Brandner asserted that the medal presented to the singer was reminiscent of Judas’s financial gains from his betrayal of Jesus.
Antisemitic hate crimes in Sweden rise by 53% to all-time record high
The number of anti-Semitic hate crimes recorded in Sweden rose to a record high last year, jumping 53 percent over the 2016 figures, government statistics show.

The 2018 report, which the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention published Thursday, listed 280 anti-Semitic hate crimes that year compared to 182 in 2016. The latest numbers are the highest on record since at least 2006, when the Council began collecting aggregated data.

Overall, the number of hate crimes with a racist or xenophobic motive rose by 69 percent over 2016 in Sweden to 4,865 cases last year, the report stated.

The council decided not to publish hate crime figures for 2017 without explaining the decision. In one attack from 2017, the Jewish assembly synagogue in Gothenburg was firebombed by approximately 10 men protesting Israel’s policies.

Anti-Semitic motives represented the largest increase from 2016 in hate crimes and was the largest hike in anti-Semitic crimes on record, the report said.

Anti-Semitic attacks accounted for 4 percent of all hate crimes in 2018. The Jewish population of 20,000 comprises approximately 0.2 percent of Sweden’s population.
Anti-fraud unicorn: Israel's Riskified raises $165m. in funding round
Tel Aviv-based fraud prevention start-up Riskified became the latest Israeli “unicorn” on Tuesday, raising $165 million in funding at a valuation exceeding $1 billion.

A “unicorn” refers to start-ups reaching or exceeding a $1b. market valuation.

Led by global growth equity firm General Atlantic, Riskified says the Series E funding round will enable the company to scale business domestically and internationally, in addition to expanding its range of products.

Other investors included Fidelity Management & Research Company, Winslow Capital Management and previous backers of the company.

Founded by Eido Gal and Assaf Feldman in 2012, Riskified is described as the pioneer of chargeback-guarantee fraud prevention – a solution in which every transaction approved by Riskified carries a full, money-back guarantee for the merchant in case of a fraud-related charge-back.

By precisely distinguishing legitimate purchases from fraud based on machine-learning from 500,000 daily transactions, Riskified protects merchants and ensures that customers do not see their payments incorrectly rejected at the online checkout.
UAE said readying to open doors to Israeli tourists, starting with 2020 Expo
The United Arab Emirates intends to allow Israeli tourists to freely visit the country and is engaged in high-level talks with Israeli authorities to put the policy into practice, the Yedioth Ahronoth daily newspaper reported Wednesday.

Israelis will initially be allowed to enter the UAE so that they can attend the Expo 2020 world fair in Dubai, which will include an Israeli pavilion. However, Expo and UAE sources confirmed to the paper that the intention is to leave the door open to Israeli visitors even after the exhibition closes.

Israel has no diplomatic ties with the UAE, though relations between the countries have quietly warmed over shared concerns about Iranian aggression in the region. Senior Israeli ministers have openly visited the country and in 2018, Israel’s national anthem was played at a judo tournament in Abu Dhabi when its team member won a gold medal.

Mohamed Khater, assistant director for tourism development in Ras Al Khaimah, a UAE emirate, confirmed that Israelis will be allowed to visit the Expo.

“I believe, God willing, they will come to visit also after the exhibition,” he said. “Already now hundreds of Israelis trickle into the country and we will be glad to host all of them.”

Israelis can currently visit the UAE if they have a foreign passport or with Israeli travel papers after getting a special entry permit.
US gives large grant to Jerusalem soccer program for Israeli, Palestinian kids
More than a year after the US administration announced drastic funding cuts to programs benefiting Palestinians, the US Embassy in Jerusalem gave a handsome grant for a project bringing Jewish and Arab children living in the capital together to play soccer.

The Hapoel Katamon Neighborhood League, in which kids from both the western and eastern part of the city participate, is “in harmony” with Washington’s vision for peace, US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman told The Times of Israel.

It will receive a one-time payment of $200,000, according to embassy officials.

“This year, 51 teams from 25 different schools will take part in the project, involving more than 750 boys and girls and 26 coaches from all sectors of society — religious and secular Jews, Muslims and Christians, representing the diversity of Jerusalem,” the US embassy said in a statement.

“The US Embassy views sports and educational activities as vital tools for building bridges between different communities and promoting a just, equal and shared society.”
Israeli tourism rises 10% compared to 2018
According to the Central Bureau of Statistics, approximately 447,100 tourist entries were recorded in October 2019, (the month when most of Jewish holidays fell in 2019) 7.9% less than October 2018 and 4.9% more than October 2017.

In the period of January – October 2019, 3.7 million tourist entries were recorded, compared to 3.4 million recorded in the same period last year, an increase of 10%.

In September, there was an increase of 44% in tourist entries on September 2018 (when most of the Jewish holidays fell in 2018). Therefore, in order to take into account, the period of the Jewish holidays, the two-month period should be calculated together.

In September-October 2019, 852,100 tourist entries were recorded, as opposed to 767,200 in the same period last year, an increase of 11%.

Revenue from incoming tourism in October stood at $643 million (about NIS 2.3 billion) and, since the beginning of the year, at $5.371 billion (about NIS 19.3 billion).

According to the Israeli Tourism Ministry, there has been a 10% increase in tourist entries to Israel since the start of the year compared to the same period last year.
George Clooney Set to Narrate New Documentary on the Late Israeli President Shimon Peres
Los Angeles film director Richard Trank has released a new film that chronicles the life and legacy of Israel's former president and prime minister Shimon Peres. Trank's film "Never Stop Dreaming", narrated by George Clooney, tells the life story of Shimon Peres from his childhood in Poland to becoming a key figure in Israel's establishment. The film focuses on his milestone achievements that include helping build up Israel's military and nuclear program, his entry into parliament, and his leadership role in the Labor Party through his election as prime minister in 1984.


Yad Vashem receives Torah scroll saved during Kristallnacht
A family Torah scroll that was saved from destruction in Ansbach, Germany during Kristallnacht was handed over to the Yad Vashem memorial and museum by the granddaughter of its owner.

The Torah scroll belonged to Dr. Ludwig Dietenhofer, "an industrialist who was active in Ansbach community life," according to Yad Vashem. Dietenhofer, who lived alone at the time because his children had all moved out of Germany, "held several public positions in the city, including as a member of the city council and head of the Jewish Community Committee."

Dietenhofer, a Zionist, planned to move to British-held Palestine and help build an independent Jewish state, and ultimately made it there shortly after Kristallnacht, or "Night of Broken Glass," when Nazis terrorized Jews throughout Germany and Austria.
Ludwig Dietenhofer and his wife / Credit: Yad Vashem Archives

During the fateful night on Nov. 9-10, 1938, Nazis killed at least 91 people, burned down hundreds of synagogues, vandalized and looted 7,500 Jewish businesses and arrested up to 30,000 Jewish men, many of whom were taken away to concentration camps.

Dietenhofer, who realized even before that night that Nazi persecution of the Jews was escalating, made sure that the Torah scroll would be spared and taken to a safe place several days in advance.

"On 27 October 1938, a tear gas bomb was thrown into the synagogue in Ansbach during prayer time, and the congregants were forced to stop praying," Yad Vashem noted on its website. "In November 1938, shortly before Kristallnacht, Ludwig was summoned to an urgent meeting with the Ansbach Chief of Police. The police chief, a friend of Ludwig's, warned him about the approaching riots, the anticipated synagogue conflagrations and physical violence, and urged him to leave the country as soon as possible."

Dietenhofer accepted that advice and took the Torah scroll, which had been donated to the synagogue by his family and used for multiple generations.



We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
          

11/06 Links Pt1: PA: Dead ISIS leader Al-Baghdadi was a US “pawn” and Israel and ISIS are “twins”; Israel says UNRWA chief’s stepping aside shows ‘deep’ change needed; Arab Spring 2.0

 Cache   
From Ian:

David Singer: Rabin’s Policies Can Help Break Gantz-Netanyahu Deadlock
The prospect of a third election in Israel within twelve months looms large – should Blue and White leader Benny Gantz be unable to form a Government of National Unity within the next two weeks.

To break the current deadlock Gantz needs at least nine members to defect from the voting bloc of 55 seats led by Prime Minister Netanyahu.

Gantz’s cause could be considerably advanced were he to publicly endorse the policies pursued by the late Prime Minister – Yitzchak Rabin – who was assassinated on 4 November 1995.

Rabin made his intentions very clear in his last speech to the Knesset on 5 October 1995 when presenting the 300 page “Israeli - Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip” (Oslo Accords) for approval:

“Members of Knesset,

“We are striving for a permanent solution to the unending bloody conflict between us and the Palestinians and the Arab states." In the framework of the permanent solution, we aspire to reach, first and foremost, the State of Israel as a Jewish state, at least 80% of whose citizens will be, and are, Jews.

"At the same time, we also promise that the non-Jewish citizens of Israel – Muslim, Christian, Druze and others – will enjoy full personal, religious and civil rights, like those of any Israeli citizen. Judaism and racism are diametrically opposed.

"We view the permanent solution in the framework of State of Israel which will include most of the area of the Land of Israel as it was under the rule of the British Mandate, and alongside it a Palestinian entity which will be a home to most of the Palestinian residents living in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

"We would like this to be an entity which is less than a state, and which will independently run the lives of the Palestinians under its authority. The borders of the State of Israel, during the permanent solution, will be beyond the lines which existed before the Six Day War. We will not return to the 4 June 1967 lines.

...
Rabin – then Defence Minister – had stated on May 27, 1985:

“The Palestinians should have a sovereign State which includes most of the Palestinians. It should be Jordan with a considerable part of the West Bank and Gaza. East of the Jordan River there is enough room to settle the Palestinian refugees. One tiny State between Israel and Jordan will solve nothing. It will be a time bomb.”

Supporting Rabin’s policies would stand Gantz in good stead as he seeks to form a Government of National Unity and – failing that – in any upcoming election that would hopefully end Israel’s current precarious political situation.


PMW: Dead ISIS leader Al-Baghdadi was a US “pawn” and Israel and ISIS are “twins” - according to the PA
While most of western society saw the death of ISIS leader and arch-terrorist Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi as a positive development in the war on terrorism, the Palestinian Authority chose to outrageously claim that Al-Baghdadi was a US "pawn" and ISIS a US creation - a terror organization only paralleled by Israel.

Muwaffaq Matar, a Fatah Revolutionary Council member and regular columnist for the official PA daily, presented a venomous PA manifest against the US:
"They [the US] killed their pawn, who they planted in the open borderless territories of Iraq and Syria after they created an organization-state of barbarity, terror, and racism, for which they chose the name 'the Islamic State.'" [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 29, 2019]

But dealing with ISIS is not enough as it only amounts to "cutting off the tail of the monster," Matar stated, arguing that the monster's head - Israel - is yet to be fought:
"[The elimination of Al-Baghdadi] was tantamount to a strong blow that has cut off the tail of the monster of terror. However, this monster has a head, and in it is a brain that is capable of growing a different tail and wings... The occupation, settlement, terror, racism, crimes against humanity, and rebellion against UN laws and conventions have a state. They named it 'Israel' and established it on the land of Palestine, which is the Palestinian people's historical and natural right."

Comparing Israel to ISIS, Matar stated that in practice ISIS and Israel are identical:
"This [ISIS] is an organization that, in regard to its crimes, there is nothing similar to it in the modern history of the region except for a defective, colonialist, settling, occupying, and racist state for which they chose the name 'the State of Israel.' The heads of large states in the world have said that the elimination of Al-Baghdadi is not the end of ISIS' terror - and this is correct! - but not one of them referred to their responsibility and their state's responsibility to drain the greatest, deepest, and most dangerous swamp of terror for the region and the world: the defective and racist State of Israel. We know... that the Muslim Brotherhood organization... is essentially a twin of the Zionist movement."
MEMRI: Chicago Islamic Scholar Omar Baloch: Israel Arms And Trains ISIS, Uses It To Destabilize The Region, Advance Its Plans For 'Greater Israel,' Alienate Muslims From Concepts Of Jihad, Islamic State
Chicago Islamic Scholar Omar Baloch said in a video he uploaded to his YouTube channel on September 11, 2019 that Islamic State (ISIS) is now fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan because "you will always find ISIS in places that are running a Zionist agenda [for] Greater Israel." He said that Israel created ISIS in order to weaken Muslims by alienating them from ideas like an Islamic state, Jihad, and Muslim unity, without which he said Islam would not be the same. Showing pictures of ISIS fighters, Baloch said that the weaponry, uniforms, and training that ISIS has are evidence that it is trained and armed by Israel, and he predicted that Israel will use ISIS to destabilize Pakistan and Kashmir. He added that Israel is "working on Kashmir" by means of India's actions in the region and that Israel intends to do to the Kashmiris what it did do to the Palestinians.

According to the Facebook page of the Furqaan Institute of Quranic Education (FIQE), Sheikh Omar Baloch was born in Chicago and is the scholar in residence at the Al-Furqaan Foundation, of which FIQE is a division. The Facebook page also says that Baloch studied at Georgetown University, at Al-Azhar University in Egypt, at Jamia Thul Ahlul Hadith in Pakistan. For more about Sheikh Omar Baloch, see MEMRI TV Clip No. 7053 Illinois-Based Sheikh Omar Baloch: Islamic Relief Organizations Should Promote the Caliphate as the Long-Term Solution to Humanitarian Problems.

"You Will Always Find ISIS In Places That Are Running A Zionist Agenda, The Agenda For Greater Israel"

Sheikh Omar Baloch: "All of a sudden, guess what? ISIS is in Afghanistan and ISIS is killing Taliban.
[...]
"You will always find ISIS in places that are running a Zionist agenda, the agenda for Greater Israel."



NGO Monitor: Key Takeaways from the Supreme Court’s Omar Shakir (HRW) Decision
Like the lower court, the Supreme Court paints a clear picture of Shakir’s BDS activism, from when he founded a pro-BDS student group in 2006 through his present employment at HRW. During this time, he has been a consistent and ardent supporter of BDS (see NGO Monitor’s extensive material submitted in its filings and which was cited in the courts’ decisions). In the words of Justice Yael Wilner (in a short addendum to the main decision), “The statements [made by Omar Shakir and presented] above are definitely calls to boycott entities that operate in Israel and Judea and Samaria, only because of their connection to Israel or an area under its control — each one (statement) individually, all the more so when taken together. It seems to me that there cannot be a substantive argument about this.”

Pro-BDS activists often use the rhetoric of “human rights” and “international law” to justify their discriminatory campaigns, but such rhetoric does not legitimize the boycotts. The Entry into Israel Law, Amendment 28 (2017) applies specifically to boycott calls that are based on a company’s connections to Israel or an area under its control, not to circumstances when the company in question has undertaken problematic activities.

Even though the judges recognize there can be gray areas, Shakir’s activity unquestionably falls within the criteria of the law. Shakir rejects in total the presence of Israeli entities in the West Bank, and his calls for BDS are in opposition to their identity as Israelis, not because of any specific human rights violation.

Contrary to claims from Shakir’s lawyers and Amnesty International (which joined the case in an amicus capacity), denying Shakir’s work visa will not adversely affect human rights NGOs that want to send representatives to Israel to criticize Israel’s policies. This is because Shakir’s involvement in BDS is so egregious.

The Court firmly rejected a key argument from Shakir’s lawyers. They tried to argue that Shakir’s personal BDS activity ended upon his employment at HRW, at which point all his expressions should be attributed to HRW as an organization. Since HRW is not on the Israeli government’s list of “BDS organizations,” Shakir’s activity as an HRW employee should be granted “immunity” from the Entry into Israel Law. In sharp contradiction, the Court determined that he is responsible for his public statements, especially those on his private Twitter account.
Shakir’s BDS is insufficient to trigger a listing of HRW as a “BDS organization” because HRW is a large international NGO with myriad activities having nothing to do with Israel. This is not a reflection on Shakir’s status as a BDS activist or HRW’s anti-Israel advocacy.
Honest Reporting: No Room For BDS Within Human Rights
Omar Shakir is Human Right's Watch (HRW) representative for Israel and Palestine. HRW is notorious for appointing anti-Israel staff and after a long investigation, Israel's Supreme Court have denied Shakir's visa extension. They have asked him to leave the country due to his clear involvement with Boycott movement against Israel.

Israel's law of denying entry to those that are involved with the hateful BDS movement is controversial, but the one thing that everyone is certain of: there is no room for BDS within human rights.




UK Paper Fails to Challenge the Lies of HRW’s Omar Shakir
The Guardian is adept at amplifying, and failing to critically scrutinize, the unsubstantiated claims and accusations of anti-Israel NGOs, and its recent article about the Israeli Supreme Court decision on Human Right Watch (HRW)’s regional director Omar Shakir — a longtime BDS activist — follows this pattern.

First, as we predicted in a tweet before the article by Oliver Holmes (“Israel can deport Human Rights Watch official, court rules,” Nov. 5) was published, the piece uncritically cites Shakir’s unhinged response to the court’s decision:
Shakir wrote on Twitter that if he was kicked out, Israel would join the ranks of Iran, North Korea, and Egypt in blocking access to Human Rights Watch staff. “We won’t stop. And we won’t be the last,” he said.

The truth is that democracies all over the world reserve the right to deny entry to those seen as intent on harming the state. Moreover, there are in excess of 350 NGOs (such as HRW) operating freely in Israel, even those who continually delegitimize the country, support BDS, and even reject Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state.

The denial of a work visa to one employee of one of these NGOs — after careful consideration by the country’s internationally respected Supreme Court — wouldn’t even minimally change the democratic nature of Israel. The human rights organization Freedom House continually ranks Israel as the only truly free and democratic country in the region, and the suggestion that this status will change due merely to the Supreme Court’s decision on Shakir’s work visa is risible.

In a subsequent paragraph in the article, Holmes makes the following claim about the broader effort by Israel to fight BDS — a movement, let’s remember, whose leaders oppose the continued existence of a Jewish state:
BBC News report uncritically amplifies political NGO’s talking points
On the afternoon of November 5th the BBC News website published a report on its ‘Middle East’ page which was presented to audiences with a ‘halo effect’ reference to a “rights activist”.

The report itself (tagged, inter alia, ‘human rights’) is headlined “Israel court rejects Human Rights Watch activist’s deportation appeal” and the caption under the photograph at the top of the article reads:
“Omar Shakir said he had not called for a boycott of Israel during his time at Human Rights Watch”

Obviously the BBC did not fact-check that claim from the person it had already flagged up as a “rights activist” (i.e. good) before amplifying it.

Had it done so, it would know that analysis of Tweets sent from Shakir’s personal Twitter account between June 2018 and February 2019 by NGO Monitor shows that 16% of those Tweets focused on BDS campaigns against Booking.com and TripAdvisor and additional Tweets supported a UN “blacklist” of businesses operating in Judea & Samaria.

45% of the BBC article’s word count is devoted to uncritical amplification of talking points from Omar Shakir (including a link to a Tweet) and his employer ‘Human Rights Watch’, including the following claim:
Updated Reuters Falsely Reports That Israel Has Criminalized BDS
In an article yesterday about the ruling by Israel's High Court to uphold the government's decision not to renew the visa of Human Rights Watch's Omar Shakir on account of his ongoing anti-Israel BDS (boycott, divest, sanctions) activity, Reuters incorrectly reports that Israel has "criminalized" BDS.
In "Israel's top court upholds deportation of Human Rights Watch official," Jeffrey Heller erroneously reports:
Israel says [Shakir] supports the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement which it has criminalized.

It has lobbied Western powers to follow suit, and Shakir’s case was a test for its anti-boycott legislation.


Israel's anti-BDS legislation treats calls for BDS as a civil, not criminal offense. Specifically, the 2011 "Law for Prevention of Damage to the State of Israel Through Boycott," as amended by the Supreme Court, allows businesses that have suffered economic harm as a result of such boycotts to sue for civil damages. There is no criminal component.

UPDATE, 8 am EST, Nov. 6: Reuters Corrects
In response to communication from CAMERA, Reuters commendably corrected the article to make clear that promotion of BDS in Israel is a civil matter, not criminal.
INSS: Russia in the Middle East: A Higher Gear or Media Buzz?
Recent weeks have featured Russia's expanded diplomatic activity in the Middle East following its longstanding involvement in the Syrian civil war. With the reduced U.S. military presence in northern Syria, the image of Russia as the leading power in the region was strengthened.

To what extent does this image of Russia reflect reality? Russia's intensive diplomatic activity in the region reflects Moscow's desire to fill the breach left by the U.S, but it does not represent a change in the balance of power between the global powers in the region. The U.S., should it choose to do so, still has the ability to challenge Moscow and upset Russia's achievements in almost every part of the region.

Russian analyst Fyodor Lukyanov, echoing the official position, stressed that Russia does not view the situation in Syria as a zero sum game with the U.S.

The political process to resolve the conflict in Syria, which was resumed on Oct. 30 in Geneva, is not under Moscow's control. The Russian attempt (2017-2019) to promote a resolution in cooperation with Turkey and Iran through the Astana Process did not succeed, and Moscow is now forced to return to the Geneva track, which is under UN control, and over which the West has veto power.

The U.S. still holds very strong cards in Syria - territorial (most of the Kurdish zone and the al-Tanf region); political (veto rights over the Geneva process); military deterrence; and economic (sanctions and preventing aid for rebuilding Syria). Beyond Syria, Russia at this stage has limited influence on regional states. U.S. allies in the Middle East are not rushing to the Russian side.
Russia captures advanced Israeli missile interceptor in Syria - report
An advanced Israeli surface-to-air missile that was fired from the David's Sling (formerly known as the Magic Wand) missile system was given to Russia by Syria, when it was found intact after the rocket did not explode on contact, according to Russian media sources.

The rocket was reportedly fired on July 23, 2018, and Syrian forces that were dispatched to the scene found the missile intact after it sustained minor damage from impact. The missile was then taken to a Syrian-Russian base where it was transferred to Moscow for further research.

David’s Sling was developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and American defense contractor Raytheon. The system is designed to intercept enemy planes, drones, medium- to long-range rockets and cruise missiles and the newest generation of tactical ballistic missiles at low altitude.

The system forms the middle layer of air defense systems between the Iron Dome and the Arrow 2 and Arrow 3 missile defense systems.

Russian media reports quoted Chinese news agency Sina saying that the missile was taken by Russia for “reverse engineering.”
Israeli Deputy FM: We have sent humanitarian aid to Kurds
Israel will help the Kurds in any way it can, Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said in the Knesset on Wednesday.

The deputy foreign minister added that she cannot go into detail about how Israel aids the Kurds, because doing so can hurt their cause.

“Israel has received many requests for aid in diplomatic and humanitarian matters. We are aiding them in various channels,” Hotovely said, in response to a motion to the Knesset’s agenda on the situation of the Kurds in Syria.

In addition, the Foreign Ministry has helped non-governmental organizations send humanitarian aid to the Kurds.

Hotovely recounted that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “condemned the Turkish invasion of northern Syria and warned against ethnic cleansing of the Kurds,” and that Israel conveyed “our truth about the Kurds in a continuing dialogue with the US.”

Israel’s support for the Kurds is based on “historic ties… [and] shared and varied interests,” she added. “There are many Kurdish Jews in Israel who maintained ties with their place of origin. Kurds are a moderate and pro-Western factor in the Middle East.”
Israel says UNRWA chief’s stepping aside shows ‘deep’ change needed
Israel called on the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees to release in full its findings of alleged mismanagement at the organization, following an announcement that its leader was taking an indefinite leave of absence.

The agency, known as UNRWA, said Wednesday the findings of a probe into alleged abuses of power among top management “relate specifically to the commissioner general” Pierre Krahenbuhl.

The Foreign Ministry said reports on alleged mismanagement at UNRWA lend credence to its criticism of the agency and called for a full release of the probe’s findings.

“The reports reinforce Israel’s claims that a deep and fundamental change is needed in the agency’s operating model,” it said in a statement.

The ministry charged that under Krahenbuhl, UNWRA has become more politicized, “the deficit has ballooned” and the agency’s model was increasingly unsustainable.

“The suspension of Krahenbuhl is a first step in a long process needed to eliminate corruption, increase transparency and prevent politicization in the agency,” it said.

It also called on donor states to consider a new operating model for UNRWA and said recent events showed the agency’s mandate should not be automatically renewed three years from now.




Two Jordanians Detained by Israel Return Home After Handover Deal
Two Jordanians, whose detention without charge by Israel led Jordan to recall its ambassador, returned home on Wednesday in a handover deal that defused a diplomatic crisis, officials said.

Hiba Labadi, 24, was arrested in August after crossing into the West Bank to attend a family wedding. She subsequently went on a hunger strike and was hospitalized after her health deteriorated.

Separately, Abdul Rahman Miri, 29, was arrested in September after he also entered the West Bank to visit relatives.

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said on Monday the two would return to Jordan “before the end of the week” without saying how their release had been secured.

Safadi however said King Abdullah had ordered the government to do everything necessary to bring them back “whatever that may cost.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said the handover was agreed after talks between Israeli and Jordanian security chiefs. It said Jordan’s ambassador would return to his post “in the coming days.”
The Coming Collapse of Lebanon Is a Crisis for Israel
It is imperative that the United States and Israel’s other allies ensure that Lebanon does not become another Afghanistan — a terror group masquerading as a state. This is a real danger now, and Israel is gravely imperiled by it. America — and all well-meaning peoples — must continue to isolate Hezbollah and its slave government in Lebanon until sanity and civilization return to “the Paris of the Middle East.”

The government and infrastructure of Lebanon are dominated by the Shiite terrorist group Hezbollah, which has already dispatched gangs of thugs to drive masses of demonstrators from the streets of major cities like Beirut and Tyre. The government of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri has resigned due to enormous street protests over his utter mismanagement and corruption.

Israel should be worried, because Hezbollah, with its economic and political power threatened, could lash out at its neighbor to the south as a unifying distraction for its outraged citizenry. A repeat of Hezbollah’s terror-missile war of 2006 would be a far more lethal version of that earlier conflict, which aimed to eradicate the “Zionist entity” on Lebanon’s southern frontier.

Since Hezbollah is a wholly owned subsidiary of Iran and Iran’s terrorist Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, Iran can be expected to play a key role in Lebanese affairs at this critical juncture. And where Iran gets involved, Israel becomes the ultimate target.
Israeli and Palestinian firefighters practice saving lives together
Israeli and Palestinian firefighters took part in a joint fire-fighting exercise in Rishon Lezion on Tuesday, according to the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT).

The exercise, held at the Rishon Lezion Firefighting and Rescue School and led by the head of the facility, trained the visiting Palestinian firefighters to handle a number of various real-life situations using a simulator. The Israeli firefighters were trained to speak Arabic throughout these life-threatening situations.

Within the scenarios practiced, the joint exercise included real-life situations such as dealing with fires inside buildings and vehicles, as well as efficient ways to rescue casualties or those in need from blocked or closed off areas.

In part of the blossoming professional relationship between the Palestinian and Israeli commissions, the commander of the Palestinian Civil Defense met with the commissioner of the Israeli Fire and Rescue Authority in the commissioner’s office to discuss firefighting innovations, future collaborations and the importance of the joint work between the two governments.

“The close cooperation between Israeli firefighters and Palestinian firefighters is of great importance in the field,” civilian officer Lt.-Col. Samir said. “Thanks to the combination of forces, we have the ability to work together to improve the skills and the proficiency of both Israeli and Palestinian firefighters alike. This collaboration has yielded fruit in the past and continues to bring positive results every time. Therefore, we will continue to work in order to strengthen and improve it, with a clear purpose – to save human lives together.”
Fatah Official Says PA Chief Abbas, Soon to Turn 85, Won’t Run for Re-Election
Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas will not run for re-election, senior Fatah official Jibril Rajoub told Palestine TV on Monday.

Rajoub’s announcement contradicted Hussein al-Sheikh, who recently said that Abbas is Fatah’s only candidate in the next presidential election.

“President Abbas is the only candidate of Fatah and honorable Palestinians,” stated Sheikh.

“Let us make him the sheikh of the tribe and the spiritual father of the democratic process,” said Rajoub. “In two months, President Abbas will celebrate his 85th birthday.”

In a speech in September at the annual UN General Assembly, Abbas said he will call for “general elections” in the West Bank, Gaza and eastern Jerusalem.

Abbas is currently in the 14th year of a four-year term.

A date for the Palestinian elections has yet to be determined.
Hamas and Islamic Jihad reject Abbas’s terms for Palestinian elections
Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) have rejected Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s terms for holding elections for the PA's parliament and president, Ynet reported on Wednesday.

The chairman of the Palestinian Central Elections Commission (CEC), Hanna Nasir, arrived in the Gaza Strip on Sunday for talks with leaders of Hamas and other Palestinian factions on Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s plans to hold parliamentary elections in the coastal enclave, the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

According to Ynet, Hamas and PIJ, which are not members of the Palestinian Liberation Organization, rejected the clause stating that the elections must be held in accordance with the Election Basic Law, which requires recognizing the agreements signed by the PLO to be able to run.

The organizations require a meeting between the factions to define the terms for new elections; only after a consensus is reached, a presidential order for elections would be issued.

A Palestinian parliamentary election was last held in 2006. The following year, Hamas carried out a violent takeover in the Gaza Strip and has been in power in the coastal enclave ever since.
Abbas bans child marriage, with some legal exemptions
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has issued a decision barring Palestinian teenagers from marrying before they turn 18 years old, unless they receive an exemption from a religious court and a top legal official.

The official PA news site Wafa reported earlier this week that Abbas made the decision, but did not say when.

In the West Bank, Palestinian law previously mandated that a female must be 15 years old and a male 16 years old to be eligible to marry, according to Suna Nassar, the PA Women’s Affairs Ministry’s legal adviser. Comparatively, in the Gaza Strip, it had held that a female must be 17 years old and a male 18, she said in a phone call.

The PA controls the West Bank, whereas Hamas rules Gaza. Hamas has not said publicly whether it will enforce Abbas’s decision.

A 2018 PA Central Bureau of Statistics report found that 10.8 percent of women in 2017 in the West Bank and Gaza Strip aged 20-24 had married before turning 18.

In contrast, the report determined that in 1997, 30.3% of women in the West Bank and Gaza who were then between 20 and 24 married before reaching 18.


Hamas Relying on Qatari Funds in Gaza Strip
Qatar warned Hamas, the Palestinian militant group running the Gaza Strip, that it could cease providing funds and aid to the area in 2020. This warning, as Middle East Monitor reports citing Hezbollah-linked Al Akhbar newspaper, came from Qatari envoy Mohammed El-Emadi. El-Emadi reportedly told Hamas and other Gaza factions that Doha had complications with renewing the funding.


Arab Spring 2.0
Moreover, what makes the demonstrations in Lebanon and Iraq unique and gives them historical dimension is that they cross the sectarian, religious and party lines, and demand a change in the structure of government, which currently perpetuates these divisions and prevents unity.

This is unheard of for Lebanon, where political power is divided according to the prominence of the various sectors in society, or for Iraq, where the majority of the population is Shiite. In both countries, protesters have made it clear that they would not settle for the mere resignation of the prime minister (Lebanese Prime Minister Said Hariri has already resigned), nor with reforms that would preserve the current and corrupt system of power.

Although economic hardship and the desire to eradicate corruption are the main issues driving the demonstrations in Lebanon and Iraq, Tehran is up in arms over them. Both countries are of paramount importance in the process of "exporting" the Iranian revolution, both play a key role in repelling external attacks on Iran, and both are used as the base of operations from which Iran can use proxies to attack potential enemies.

In Lebanon, this task falls to Hezbollah and in Iraq, it is the work of pro-Iranian militias. Therefore, any threat to the internal stability in Iraq and Lebanon could undermine Iran's security and military strategy.

Tehran is also concerned that the Iranian people may catch the protest "bug," as they did in 2009 and in 2017.

The prospect of the second round of the Arab Spring in Lebanon and Iraq being more successful than its predecessor is unclear. Replacing the political system in Arab countries is no simple matter, and rulers do not give up their seats easily. But the Iranians already feel threatened by this – just as much as they feel threatened by the devastating economic sanctions the US has imposed on them.

It may very well be that Tehran's decision to renew uranium enrichment sought to distract from the internal problems of the protests in Iraq and Lebanon are creating for it. The ayatollahs much prefer the Iranian people focus on the "real" enemy that on their own plights.
FIFA: Iraq 'unsafe' to host World Cup qualifying matches
FIFA says Iraq is not safe enough to host World Cup qualifying games against Iran and Bahrain.

FIFA says it asked the Iraq soccer federation "to nominate a neutral venue" for the matches on Nov. 14 and 19.

The games were to be played in Basra, the southern city which hosted Iraq's return last month to playing competitive games at home.

Iraq has rarely staged home games since the 1980s because of security concerns.

Turmoil in Iraq in recent weeks has been fueled by economic problems and dissatisfaction with Iran's political influence on its neighbor.
Iran shaves weeks off breakout time, but isn’t tearing up nuclear pact yet
The ongoing game of brinkmanship between Tehran and Washington has entered a new, potentially dangerous level, with Iran restarting uranium enrichment at its Fordo nuclear facility and also announcing it was raising the level of this enrichment, up to five percent.

These two decisions represent a distinctly shocking and provocative move by the Islamic Republic, but they also remain easily reversible, experts say, as Iran attempts to bully its way toward financial relief while keeping just shy of prompting European countries to call for a so-called snapback of broader international sanctions.

The transformation of the Fordo Fuel Enrichment Plant, which is buried deep under a mountain in Iran’s Qom district, from a uranium enrichment facility to one used for other, non-nuclear purposes was a key provision of the 2015 nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

The heavily fortified Fordo was originally built and operated in secret by Iran, until it was exposed by Western intelligence services, including Israel’s, and ultimately acknowledged by Tehran in 2009 to great international criticism. The facility is widely regarded as having been built for the explicit purpose of producing highly enriched uranium for nuclear weapons far enough underground that it couldn’t be destroyed in a military strike.
US accuses Iran of ‘nuclear extortion’ as Tehran expands enrichment at key plant
The United States accused Iran on Tuesday of “nuclear extortion” and vowed no let-up in pressure after the clerical regime said it would resume uranium enrichment at the key Fordo plant.

“Iran has no credible reason to expand its uranium enrichment program, at the Fordo facility or elsewhere, other than a clear attempt at nuclear extortion that will only deepen its political and economic isolation,” a State Department spokesperson said.

“We will continue to impose maximum pressure on the regime until it abandons its destabilizing behavior, including proliferation-sensitive work.”

The comments came hours after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed to “never let Iran develop nuclear weapons.”

”Iran expands its aggression everywhere. It seeks to envelop Israel. It seeks to threaten Israel. It seeks to destroy Israel,” Netanyahu said at an event in Jerusalem.

Iran has regularly threatened to destroy Israel, and has developed ballistic missiles believed in the West to be intended to carry nuclear warheads in the future.
Macron: With new centrifuge operation, Iran is withdrawing from nuclear deal
French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday said Iran’s decision to resume enrichment activity at a nuclear facility meant it had withdrawn from the troubled 2015 nuclear agreement with major powers.

Iran on Wednesday said it had begun inserting uranium gas into over 1,000 centrifuges at the Fordo nuclear facility, which under the JCPOA pact had turned into a research facility with no active enrichment.

“I think that for the first time, Iran has decided in an explicit and blunt manner to leave the JCPOA (nuclear) agreement, which marks a profound shift,” Macron said at a news conference during a trip to Beijing, according to a Reuters report.

Macron called the developments a “profound change” from Tehran’s previous position and a “grave” move.

“I will have discussions in the coming days, including with the Iranians, and we must collectively draw the consequences,” Macron said.
Iran briefly held IAEA inspector, seized travel documents - diplomats
Iran briefly held an inspector working for the U.N. nuclear watchdog in the Islamic Republic and seized her travel documents, diplomats familiar with the agency’s work said on Wednesday, with some describing it as harassment.

The incident appears to be the first of its kind since Tehran’s landmark deal with major powers was struck in 2015, imposing restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of international sanctions.

Hours after Reuters reported the incident, Iran confirmed that it had prevented an inspector from accessing its Natanz site - the heart of its uranium enrichment program - last week, because of a concern that she might be carrying “suspicious material”, according to the Fars news agency.

The episode comes at a time of heightened friction between Iran and the West, with Tehran breaching the deal’s restrictions step-by-step in response to Washington’s withdrawal from the deal and renewed sanctions. The International Atomic Energy Agency is also in transition, with a new chief taking over next month.

The incident is due to be reported on at a meeting of the IAEA’s 35-nation Board of Governors on Thursday convened at short notice to discuss “two safeguards matters” not specified in the agenda, which was circulated on Monday.
How Tehran Is Surviving U.S. Sanctions
A year ago, the U.S. kicked off a "maximum pressure" campaign against Iran. After withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal in May 2018, in November it reimposed a raft of economic sanctions squeezing Iranian oil exports and curtailing the country's access to the international financial system.

Iran expected that other parties to the nuclear deal would help shore up its economy. But European governments could not force private companies to defy U.S. sanctions. Nor did other friendly governments - China, Russia, and India - pick up the slack. They face little pressure from the oil market to go out on a limb for Iran. Global demand is slowing, supply is abundant, and prices are low - so why risk U.S. sanctions to buy Iranian oil?

The International Monetary Fund and World Bank predict that Iran's economy will rebound from a recession to near zero percent growth in 2020. Iran's fluctuating currency, the rial, has stabilized. The Iranian economy stays afloat in part because it is diversified. In 2017, crude oil accounted for 43% of Iranian exports, so Iran's service, agricultural, and non-oil industrial sectors were able to cushion the blow from the collapse of oil revenues under sanctions.

Moreover, the government can draw upon its $100 billion of reserves to cover any gaps and to ensure the continued strong social spending that Iranians expect.
2 Iranians accused of spying on Jewish, Israeli targets in US plead guilty
Two Iranians who were charged with collecting information on Israeli and Jewish targets in the US and on opponents of the Iranian regime have pleaded guilty to acting on behalf of Tehran, the US Justice Department announced Tuesday.

Ahmadreza Mohammadi-Doostdar, 39, a dual US-Iranian citizen, and Majid Ghorbani, 60, an Iranian citizen and resident of California, were arrested last year.

“The Iranian government thought it could get away with conducting surveillance on individuals in the United States by sending one of its agents here to task a permanent resident with conducting and collecting that surveillance,” said Jessie K. Liu, United States Attorney for the District of Columbia.

Doostdar is scheduled to be sentenced on December 17 and Ghorbani will receive his sentence on January 15.

As part of his plea, Doostdar admitted he traveled to the United States from Iran on three occasions to meet with Ghorbani and to convey directions for Ghorbani’s activities on behalf of Iran.
BBC News mantra on ‘peaceful’ Iranian nuclear programme returns
Iran’s latest breach of the 2015 JCPOA was portrayed by the BBC as “rolling back another commitment” in the opening line of an article headlined “Iran nuclear deal: Uranium enrichment to resume at underground facility” which appeared on the BBC News website’s ‘Middle East’ page on November 5th.

As is inevitably the case in BBC reporting on that deal and Iran’s nuclear programme, audiences were told that:

“Iran has insisted that its nuclear programme is entirely peaceful.”

The BBC knows that in December 2015 (after the JCPOA had already been agreed) the International Atomic Energy Agency – IAEA – produced a report which stated that:

“…the agency “assesses that a range of activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device were conducted in Iran prior to the end of 2003 as a coordinated effort, and some activities took place” up to 2009.”

The BBC also knows that in April 2018 Israel revealed documents from Iran’s nuclear archive which raised new issues. Nevertheless, it once again chose to amplify Iranian propaganda but not to inform readers of those relevant parts of the story.
PreOccupiedTerritory: Iran Defends Imperialism As Bulwark Against Imperialism (satire)
Officials in the Islamic Republic of Iran explain the country’s virtual takeover of Iraq and Lebanon, as well as its use of puppet militias and proxy forces in Syria and Yemen, among others, as a defense against Western efforts to take over Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, and other Middle East states, regime sources reported today.

Representatives of various government ministries and the country’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told journalists Wednesday that the territorial integrity and political independence of countries in the region are sacrosanct, and require Iran’s protection from what they characterized as a US-led effort to exert effective control over them, protection that Iran provides in the form of taking them over and exerting effective control.

“Satanic Western imperialism will not succeed,” warned Deputy Minister of Defense Mohtin Yorai. “To counter the threat of the evil machinations of the Great Satan and its minions we have already assumed de facto control of the governments of Iraq and Lebanon, and are working to establish similar arrangements elsewhere. In the same vein we offer material and financial support to Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and other groups waging a similar fight. The Zionists and their allies will fail in their campaign to subjugate and rule the region because we will do so first.”




We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
          

Unpacking the PACBI Excuse (Divest This!)

 Cache   


Last time, I pointed out the various excuses the boycott-Israel crowd uses when forced to confront their clear double-standard on human rights stances (i.e., Israel deserves to be boycotted for building a fence to keep suicide bombers from its cities, but Syria and China should not be boycotted since they merely killed 3-500,000 or 70,000,000 of their own people).
As noted, most of these excuses have the distinction of being both transparently self-serving and unbelievably lame. But one “reason,” the one claiming that the call to boycott Israel wells up from Palestinian civil society and is thus unique, begs for a more careful review.
The claim that BDS is a response to boycott calls originating from people in the region is based on the 2004 Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (or PACBI). Whenever Naomi Klein or some other boycott advocate talk about a boycott call endorsed by over 200 Palestinian civic organizations, the groups on the list of original PACBI signatories is what they’re talking about.
Within that original list of participating organizations (which I can no longer find now that PACBI has been folded under a general BDS Web umbrella), 10-15% of the signatories were identified as originating outside Israel, the West Bank or Gaza, including over 20 organizations from surrounding countries (13 from Syria, 6 from Lebanon and 2 from Jordan) and another 9 from Europe or North America. Now it may be that some of these (as well as some of the organizations not identified by location) are refugee or Diaspora groups.  But given the large Syrian contingent on PACBI’s original roster, the notion that we’re talking entirely about un-coerced volunteers becomes shaky.
Second, as the name implies PACBI stands for an academic and cultural boycott (the least popular form of BDS, by the way), meaning those who signed up in 2004 were not necessarily joining a movement for wholesale economic isolation of the Jewish state. So those claiming that PACBI is the origin for broad-based BDS activities may be putting words into the mouths of Palestinian agricultural, medical and industrial unions/organizations, many of whom may not be that excited about economic boycotts that punish them as well as Israel.
On more meatier matters, the first group that topped the list of “Unions, Associations, Campaigns” supporting the PACBI boycott call is the Council of National and Islamic Forces in Palestine, a coalition that includes Hamas, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and some of the more violent sub-sets of Fatah. Call me crazy, but I suspect that it’s much easier for this Council to get the Palestinian Dentist’s Association (also a PACBI signatory) to agree to its requests that vice versa.
The potential that the PACBI boycott call arises from coercion within Palestinian society (vs. being a consensus welling up from the grass roots) also points out an interesting paradox. The claim that Israel uniquely deserves the BDS treatment is, to a certain extent, based on Israel supposedly being exceptional with regard to its level of human rights abuses (vs. Iran, China, North Korea, etc.). And yet the members making up PACBI can only be seen as legitimately representing Palestinian civic society if Israel’s “repression” does not extend to eliminating such civic space in both Israel and the West Bank.
Like the claim that Israel is inflicting a “Holocaust” on a Palestinian population that is simultaneously experiencing a population explosion, the very existence of PACBI demonstrates that the level of repression found in countries ignored by BDS activists (Sudan, Saudi Arabia, etc.) does not exist in Israel. And thus we are led back to the conclusion that the best way to avoid being a target of alleged “human rights” activists pushing boycott, divestment and sanction is to actually be a repressive dictatorship that crushes civic society rather than letting it exist to sign boycott petitions.
Finally, a note on dates. PACBI, as stated on their own Web site, made its “plea” for academic BDS in 2004, years after divestment programs originating at the 2001 Durban conference were well underway in North American and European universities, unions, churches and municipalities. In other words, the PACBI call was the result of the success BDS was seeing between 2001-2004, and being the result it could not have simultaneously been the cause.
Time travel underlies much of the BDS project, as is underlies much of what passes for analysis of the Middle East. My favorite example of this is the projection of today’s US support for Israel (which didn’t really kick into high gear until the 1970s) back to 1948 and beyond in hope of finding a US-Zionist conspiracy going back to before the founding of the Jewish state.
If ignorance is bliss, then the folks behind the PACBI excuse for BDS are either the happiest people on earth, or at least the most manipulative.





We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
          

11/05 Links Pt1: ‘I like your frame on this’: Warren nods as supporter claims US backs 'genocide in Palestine'; It’s Time to Close Down UNRWA; Israel’s Supreme Court rules HRW Director can be deported over BDS

 Cache   
From Ian:

‘I like your frame on this’: Warren nods as supporter claims US backs 'genocide in Palestine'
Elizabeth Warren nodded along with an attendee at her town hall event while he claimed the American military supported genocide.

The Massachusetts senator and 2020 presidential hopeful took questions from the crowd in Grinnell, Iowa, on Monday, with one attendee saying, “Right now, the United States is bombing at least seven countries. We support genocides in Palestine and in Yemen. The U.S. military is actually the biggest polluter of any organization in the world.”

He continued, “United States sanctions on Venezuela caused over 40,000 deaths, and we also have sanctions on many other countries like Iran, North Korea, and you can name many more.”

The attendee asked Warren, “I’m wondering, as president, will you stop U.S.-supported murder, whether it’s through sanctions, arms support, or boots on the ground?”

Warren responded, “I like your frame on this.”


Republican Jewish group’s campaign slams Democrats as a ‘disgrace’ — in Yiddish
The Republican Jewish Coalition on Sunday launched a $10 million campaign — an unprecedented amount in partisan Jewish advertising — with online ads depicting 2020 Democratic US presidential candidates as a “disgrace.”

Videos titled “Shanda,” Yiddish for “disgrace,” blast the Democrats for saying they would consider reducing aid to Israel.

“The radical Left has taken the reins of the Democratic Party, and their policy proposals will devastate our national security, our alliance with Israel, our economy, and our health care system,” Matt Brooks, the RJC’s executive director, said in a statement announcing the release of the 15- to 30-second ads.

The placement of the videos on Facebook, YouTube and other media will cost $50,000. Brooks confirmed to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency a report in Axios that the RJC had budgeted $10 million for its 2020 efforts.

In the spots, “leading Democrats” are accused of “turning their back” on Israel. They show House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, who is Jewish.





It’s Time to Close Down UNRWA
UNRWA’s top official, Commissioner-General Pierre Krähenbühl, was accused of appointing as an adviser a woman with whom he was romantically involved. The pair traveled on business class flights across the globe. Deputy Commissioner-General Sandra Mitchell was accused of bullying and of manipulating the system to find a well-paid job for her spouse, Robert Langridge, who was promoted. Chief of Staff Hakam Shahwan was accused of behaving like a thug, placing people loyal to him in positions of power, and lobbying to take over UNRWA operations in Jerusalem.

Perhaps not surprisingly in view of the above, the agency has adopted a culture of secrecy about itself. It employs about 30,000 people (compared to the UNHCR’s 11,000 for the rest of the world’s 17 million refugees and displaced persons). Most of its staff are Palestinians and many are known members of Hamas (indeed, Hamas membership helps one get a UN job). Peter Hansen, UNRWA’s former Commissioner-General (1996–2005), admitted in an interview with CBS that there are Hamas members on the UNRWA payroll. For example, the chairman of UNRWA’s Palestinian workers’ union, Suhail al-Hindi, is a member of Hamas’ new political leadership.

Retired IDF Col. Yoni Fighel, a former military governor in the territories, notes that as long as UNRWA employees are members of Hamas, they are going to pursue the interests of that organization within the framework of their job.

The agency was threatened with closure after the Trump administration implemented severe cuts following reports that proved rockets had been hidden inside UNRWA schools. UN Secretary-General António Guterres, who sat on the ethics findings for months, claims he is “committed to acting swiftly on the corruption allegations.”

The UN originally made clear that UNRWA’s mandate would be short-term, indicating that the refugee issue should be solved expeditiously through repatriation or resettlement. In the words of former UN Secretary-General Trygve Lie, “The refugees will lead an independent life in countries that have sheltered them. Except for the ‘hardcore’ cases, the refugees will no longer be maintained by an international organization as they are at present. They will be integrated into the economic system of the countries of asylum and will themselves provide for their own needs and those of their families.”

Palestinian residents of Arab states — all of whom are considered refugees by UNRWA — should become citizens of those states, as they are in Jordan.


Israel’s Supreme Court rules HRW Director can be deported over BDS
In a landmark anti-BDS ruling the High Court of Justice has paved the way for Israel to deport Human Rights Watch’s local director Omar Shakir for his support of boycott activity against Israel.

Human Rights Watch is weighing an appeal to a larger judicial panel of the verdict by a three judges. If not appeal is lodged, Shakir could be asked to leave the country within 20-day.

The ruling is a victory for those who hold that advocates of the Boycott, Sanctions and Divestment Movement are acting against the state and are not engaged in legitimate criticism of Israel. Opponents view it as part of a movement to suppress human rights advocacy in Israel.

Shakir, who is a US citizen, immediately tweeted that if the HCJ decision is upheld, Israel will “join ranks of Iran, N Korea & Egypt in blocking access for @hrw official. We wont stop. And we wont be the last.”

Minister for Strategic Affairs Gilad Erdan [Likud] expressed his satisfaction over the verdict.

"I applaud the decision of the Supreme Court that accepted my Ministry and the Interior Minister's position that a work visa should not be given to a foreign boycott activist who wants to harm Israel and its citizens," he said in a statement.

"Omar Shakir is a BDS activist who took advantage of his stay in Israel to harm it, something no sane country would allow. Israel sees great importance in the activities of real human rights organizations, granting hundreds of visas every year to human rights activists. HRW is welcome to appoint another representative in Israel in place of Shakir if it chooses to do so," he added.
NGO Monitor: Resource Page on Omar Shakir (HRW) Court Case
On November 5, 2019, the Supreme Court rejected Shakir’s appeal and upheld the ruling of the Lower Court that his work visa will not be renewed.

In October 2016, Human Rights Watch (HRW) hired Omar Shakir to serve as its “Israel and Palestine Country Director.” Shakir has been a consistent supporter of a one-state framework and advocate for BDS (boycotts, divestment, sanctions) campaigns, fitting the longstanding HRW practice of hiring anti-Israel activists to serve in key positions relating to Israel.

In May 2018, due to Shakir’s BDS ties, the Israeli Ministry of Interior chose not to renew his work visa. HRW and Shakir have been challenging this decision in Israeli courts. In April 2019, he lost his case in the Jerusalem District Court and immediately appealed to the Israeli Supreme Court. The hearing took place on September 24, 2019. While Shakir regularly assails Israel for its “lack of democracy,” in fact, the Israeli courts allowed him to remain in the country during his appeal process despite having no obligation to do so.

Omar Shakir’s background and history of anti-Israel activity exemplifies the organization’s troubling ideological approach to Israel and retreat from the universal principles of human rights.1


Guardian fails to challenge the lies of HRW’s Omar Shakir
The Guardian is adept at amplifying, and failing to critically scrutinise, the unsubstantiated claims and accusations of anti-Israel NGOs, and today’s article about the Israeli Supreme Court decision on Human Right Watch’s regional director Omar Shakir – a long time BDS activist – follows this pattern.

First, as we predicted in a tweet before the article by Oliver Holmes (“Israel can deport Human Rights Watch official, court rules”, Nov. 5th) was published, the piece uncritically cites Shakir’s simply unhinged response to the court’s decision:
Shakir wrote on Twitter that if he was kicked out, Israel would join the ranks of Iran, North Korea and Egypt in blocking access to Human Rights Watch staff. “We won’t stop. And we won’t be the last,” he said.

The truth is that democracies all over the world reserve the right to deny entry to those seen as intent on harming the state. Moreover, there are in excess of 350 NGOs (such as HRW) operating freely in Israel, even those who continually deligitimise the state, support BDS and even reject Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state.

The denial of a work visa to one employee of one of these NGOs – after careful consideration by the country’s internationally respected supreme court – wouldn’t even minimally change the democratic nature of Israel. The human rights organisation Freedom House continually ranks Israel as the only truly free and democratic country in the region, and the suggestion that this status will change due merely to the supreme court’s decision on Shakir’s work visa is risible.

In a subsequent paragraph in the article, Holmes makes the following claim about the broader effort by Israel to fight BDS – a movement, let’s remember, whose leaders oppose the continued existence of a Jewish state.
'A unity government is dead, and Israel is on its way to a 3rd election'
There is virtually no chance, and if there is no dramatic breakthrough in negotiations, Israel will be facing its third general election in a year, senior political officials from the Likud, Blue and White, Yisrael Beytenu, and the New Right were saying Monday.

According to one official, the two sides are farther apart than ever, particularly since Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's spokespeople were questioned by police last week.

The same official said that Blue and White was waiting for Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit to decide whether or not to indict Netanyahu. Mendelblit is expected to make his decision in early December. For Blue and White, even if Mendelblit were to drop the count of bribery, any indictment would be the final nail in the coffin of any possibility of forming a government with Netanyahu, he explained.

On the other hand, the official said, Netanyahu wants to remain prime minister, even if he is indicted. Therefore, he will not step down, and will apparently retain the support of the Likud and the smaller right-wing parties when and if he is under indictment.

The official said that as of Monday night, it was clear that neither the Likud nor the right-wing bloc would oust Netanyahu and would prefer to hold a third election, even at their detriment.

He also said that Blue and White leader Benny Gantz's position was shaky and even if he wanted to adopt the compromise put forth by President Reuven Rivlin, he would not be able to negotiate it.

"A unity government is dead, and Israel is on its way to a third election," the official said.
Sderot youth challenge MKs to take up their cause
In the middle of Sderot, near the Gaza border, 120 chairs sat empty on a lawn on Sunday, waiting for MKs to fill them.

The chairs were set up by young residents of Sderot to represent the 120 MKs who they say they feel abandoned them as rockets continue to be fired at them from Gaza on a regular basis, including on Friday.

“Elections are important and coalition negotiations are important,” organizers wrote. “Even investigations are important, recordings are important, indictments are important. And also a memorial ceremony [for former prime minister Yitzhak Rabin] is important.”

“Hey, how did we forget?” they continued. “A plane for the prime minister is important and so are demonstrations outside the attorney-general’s house, but wait, rockets on the residents of the South are not a little important.”

The residents said they’re sick of promises that are not being fulfilled.

“After a Shabbat full of fireworks in the sky, after the horror show organized by terrorists on the other side of the fence, we decided to stop being quiet.”

Dvir Sasi, a spokesman for the protest, said: “We welcome all the MKs to come to us and explain the situation to us, and listen to us, and tell us their solution.”

What does conviction of IDF soldier mean for ICC war crimes battle?
Twenty months into the Gaza border conflict, the IDF courts issued their first conviction of a soldier for shooting one of the approximately 350 Palestinians who have been killed.

At the same time, the sentence was a mere one month of community service since the conviction was not for a more serious charge, like manslaughter, but essentially for the low-grade offense of violating the rules of engagement for opening fire.

Why was this the result, and what does all of this mean for the broader big battle before the International Criminal Court (ICC) over whether Israel’s legal system complies with international law or whether it has committed war crimes?

Official and unofficial statements from the IDF were short on details, leaving some critics to speculate about potential improper intentions.

Essentially, they said that the unnamed IDF soldier had violated open fire regulations in shooting toward the 15-year-old Palestinian Othman Helles as he was climbing the Gaza security fence, but that IDF investigators could not establish for sure one way or another whether that soldier’s bullet was the one that killed him.

What does this mean? How can the IDF know the soldier fired illegally toward Helles without knowing whether his bullet was the “kill-shot”?
JPost Editorial: Recognize the Armenian genocide
About 105 years ago, the Armenian genocide began. Members of the Armenian community living in the Ottoman Empire were systematically exterminated at the orders of the governing authorities. As many as 1.5 million Armenians, an ethnic minority, were rounded up and murdered or deported to the deserts of Syria to die.

The Armenian genocide was well known in its time. The German military attaché to the Ottoman Empire described it as “total extermination” and other accounts provided graphic details of the horrors the survivors went through. Women were sold into slavery and raped, children were left to starve. In a prelude to the Holocaust and the crimes of ISIS, the slaughter of Armenians was an opening to a hundred years of similar mass murder events.

As a state founded in the wake of genocide, Israel knows too well what it means to be a small minority subjected to massacre and the systematic murder by a government. Like Armenians, Jews had to live as minorities under regimes such as the Germans or the Poles, enjoying “protection” so long as they did not get in the way of the state’s interests.

In late October, the US House of Representatives passed a resolution to recognize the Armenian genocide. It overwhelmingly passed with 405 votes and affirms that the US will record the genocide and provide “solemn remembrance of one of the great atrocities of the 20th century.” The US was moved to act because of recent tensions with Turkey.


Turkey protected Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
Turkey protected ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi – and Trump should have known.

In his national address announcing that US Special Forces had killed Baghdadi, President Donald Trump commended Turkey while turning a blind eye to Turkey’s collusion with ISIS. While Trump thanked “the Syrian Kurds for certain support they were able to give us,” he downplayed the importance of intelligence provided by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which was critical to the mission.

We know that Turkey institutionalized support for jihadis after Syria’s President Bashar Assad attacked Syrian rebels in Ghouta using chemical weapons in September 2013, and that Turkey’s National Intelligence Agency (MIT) provided weapons, money and logistical support to jihadi groups that evolved into ISIS. Wounded ISIS warriors regularly showed up at Turkish hospitals in Gaziantep to receive medical care.

Baghdadi founded ISIS in the spring of 2014. ISIS attacked Mosul and Sinjar in June, terrorizing Yazidis and Kurds. Over five years, the so-called ISIS caliphate grew to the size of Great Britain, with eight million people under its control.

According to the SDF, “Turkey provides all kinds of support to the terrorist groups. These forces, trained and funded by Turkey, are engaged in a planned ethnic cleansing against our people.” Turkish-backed jihadis in the so-called Free Syrian Army (FSA) commit crimes on a daily basis in Turkish-occupied areas of Syria such as Afrin, Azaz, Bab, Jarablus and Idlib.
MEMRI: Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad: It Is Possible That Al-Baghdadi Has Been Kidnapped, Hidden, Or Had His Appearance Surgically Altered; Israel Has Been Behind The Scenes Throughout The War; Erdoğan Is Our Enemy
Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad was interviewed on Syria TV on October 31, 2019. He said that the extremist Wahhabi doctrine represented by Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and ISIS will continue to exist even after ISIS is gone and that Al-Baghdadi had been released from American prisons in Syria in order to lead ISIS. Questioning whether Al-Baghdadi was really killed by the Americans, President Al-Assad suggested that he may have already been dead or that he may have been kidnapped, hidden, or had his appearance surgically altered. He said that the American operation to kill Al-Baghdadi was a trick and that American politics rely on imagination and resemble Hollywood. Later in the interview, President Al-Assad said that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is Syria's enemy and that U.S President Donald Trump is the best president America has ever had because he is transparent about American policy and America's interest in Middle Eastern oil.

In addition, President Al-Assad said that even though Turkey is occupying parts of Syria, negotiating with it would not suggest that Syria could also negotiate with Israel, because Syria does not recognize Israel as a state or the Israelis as a people the way it does Turkey and the Turks. He also said that Syria wants to gradually regain sovereignty in Kurdistan. Furthermore, President Al-Assad said that Israel's influence is ever present in Syria, that Israel's involvement in the Syrian civil war is a given even though it is not openly apparent, and that everything that has taken place in Syria has served the interests of Israel through proxies, agents, flunkies, or the United States. The English-subtitled version of the interview was uploaded to the Syrian Presidency's YouTube channel.
Halkbank Says It Will Seek Dismissal of US Indictment, Judge’s Recusal
A lawyer for Turkey’s state-owned Halkbank, which has been criminally charged by US prosecutors with helping Iran evade sanctions, said in a letter on Monday that it would seek to dismiss the case and have the judge assigned to it recuse himself.

In a letter to US District Judge Richard Berman in Manhattan, Andrew Hruska, a lawyer for Halkbank, said the bank was not agreeing to appear in court on the charges. He asked that he be allowed to represent the bank for the limited purpose of arguing the dismissal and recusal motions.

A hearing is scheduled in the case on Tuesday, and prosecutors have said they may seek a fine against Halkbank if it refuses to appear.

A spokesman for the office of Manhattan US Attorney Geoffrey Berman, which is prosecuting the case, declined to comment. Hruska did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan brought the criminal charges against Halkbank on Oct. 16. The bank called the charges an escalation of Washington’s sanctions on Ankara over its military incursion in Syria, while Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called them an “unlawful, ugly” step.

Hruska said in Monday’s letter that the bank’s “incidental contacts with the US are insufficient to establish… jurisdiction” in the New York federal court.
Khaled Abu Toameh: Fatah official: Abbas won't seek reelection
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is not planning to run in the next presidential election, senior Fatah official Jibril Rajoub said in an interview with Palestine TV on Monday.

Rajoub’s announcement contradicts a statement by another senior Fatah official, Hussein al-Sheikh, who recently said that the only candidate of Fatah in the presidential election will be the 84-year-old Abbas.

“President Abbas is the only candidate of Fatah and honorable Palestinians,” Sheikh said.

Rajoub, who also heads the Palestinian Football Association, described Abbas as a “national treasure.” Abbas, he revealed, does not want to run in the election, and he won’t agree to be a candidate.

“Let us make him the sheikh of the tribe and the spiritual father of the democratic process,” Rajoub said. “In two months, President Abbas will celebrate his 85th birthday.”

In September, Abbas announced in a speech before the United Nations General Assembly that he intends to call for “general elections” in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem.

Rajoub, a former head of the PA’s Preventive Security Force in the West Bank, is seen by some Palestinians as a potential successor to Abbas. However, Rajoub did not say in the interview whether he intends to present his candidacy in the presidential election.

Rajoub’s announcement that Abbas won’t seek another term in office is likely to trigger a “war of succession” between several veteran PLO and Fatah officials who see themselves as suitable candidates to succeed the PA president.

Abbas himself has not said whether he intends to contest the next election. Moreover, he still hasn’t announced a date for holding new presidential and parliamentary elections.

The last Palestinian presidential election was held in 2005, when Abbas was elected for a four-year term. The last parliamentary election, held in 2006, resulted in a Hamas victory.

Rajoub expressed hope that Abbas would set a date for the new elections before the end of this year.
PMW: “The most despicable plot” – Palestinian reactions to the anniversary of the Balfour Declaration
The Balfour Declaration of Nov. 2, 1917 was a letter from British Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour to Zionist leader Baron Rothschild stating that “His Majesty's government views with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.”

Every year, PA officials condemn the Balfour Declaration and seem to compete in calling it names, denying its legitimacy, and refuting the validity of Jews’ right to a national home in “Palestine” as Palestinian Media Watch has reported. This year is no exception. Here are some examples of statements by PA officials and others about Balfour’s “ominous promise”:

PA Minister of Culture Atef Abu Saif stated that the Balfour Declaration is an “invalid promise” that Britain had no right to give, and that the Jews had no right to receive. He called it “a mark of disgrace in the history of humanity” and a “historic mistake,” and predicted that Israel/the Jews will disappear like previous “invaders”:
Minister Abu Saif: “Palestine belongs to the Palestinians, and the invaders will go away as those who preceded them went away...

He added: ‘The ominous promise, in which the one giving the promise permitted giving what is not his to one who has no right, was a mark of disgrace in the history of humanity. The historic mistake will only be corrected when the right returns to its owners.’”

[Donia Al-Watan, independent Palestinian news agency, Nov. 2, 2019]


The PA claims of the illegitimacy of Britain’s actions and Israel's creation is illustrated by this image printed by the official PA daily, which shows the British and the Israeli flags in a no entry sign on the Balfour Declaration together with an image of Balfour and “Palestine”:

The PLO factions issued a joint statement on the anniversary that named the Balfour Declaration “the most despicable plot in the history of the peoples.” The PLO claimed that the “ominous promise” was the result of the convergence of interests of the “colonialist states” Britain and the US and the Zionist movement. The PLO repeated the PA claim that the colonial powers used the Jewish people as a pawn in the Middle East to gain control in the region, steal its resources, and prevent the Arab countries from developing:
Fatah: “We will defend our holy sites with our blood and our souls” “Jerusalem is ours”
Text: “The deal of the century will never pass. We will defend our holy sites with our blood and our souls” PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "This is not allowed. This cannot happen. This is a decisive moment, a dangerous moment for us. Our entire future is at stake. If Jerusalem is lost, what will you say afterwards?" Text: “Jerusalem is ours and you will never have a place in it” PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "This is a crucial moment that demands that every Palestinian present themselves immediately to quickly discuss the fate of the eternal capital [Jerusalem]. In politics: It’s the capital. In religion: It’s the capital. In geography: It’s the capital." Text: “The shining rage will uproot the tyranny from our land” PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "Here we are sitting, here we are remaining. We will never repeat the mistakes of the past. We will not repeat the mistakes of 1948 or the mistakes of 1967. We are remaining here – occupation, settlements, whatever – We are remaining here!" Song lyrics: "The home is ours and Jerusalem is ours" Text: “The home is ours and Jerusalem is ours. And with our hands we will liberate it, Allah willing” Text: “Fatah Al-Asifa” (The Fatah logo includes a grenade, crossed rifles, and the PA map of “Palestine” that presents all of Israel as “Palestine” together with the PA areas.) [Official Fatah Facebook page, July 28, 2019]


Khaled Abu Toameh: Hamas Joins Iranian Plan to Foil Arabs' Anti-Corruption Protests
Alnehaiwi added that the "popular revolutions against the [Iranian] occupiers and [Arab] executioners are a luminous point and milestone that will serve the interest of the Palestinian issue." Noting that Hamas did the right thing when it sided with the Syrian people in their uprising against the regime of President Bashar Assad, the political analyst said:
"Hamas may regret its support for Iran. Hamas will lose a great deal if it continues to side with Iran and stands against the people who have revolted against [Iranian] occupation and the executioners."

Such criticism, however, is unlikely to deter Hamas from pursuing its agenda of promoting Iran's interests in the region. The Arabs who are risking their lives to demand good governance and an end to corruption are now being targeted by Iran and its puppets in the Gaza Strip, Lebanon and Iraq.

It now remains to be seen whether the Arabs who have finally woken up to realize that Iran -- and not Israel -- is the real threat to their well-being will be able to keep up the momentum and continue their uprising against corruption and Iranian dominance over their countries.

By continuing to align itself with Iran, Hamas is leading its people straight toward even greater suffering. The only way for the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip to alleviate their misery is by revolting against their "leaders" in Hamas. Instead of firing rockets at Israel and demonstrating at the Gaza-Israel border, Palestinians ought to learn from their brothers in Lebanon and Iraq who their real enemies are: Iranian-backed dictators and fake Palestinian leaders, who only know how to lead their people towards further suffering.
Hamas Encouraging Youth Drug Use as Qatar Support Comes to an End
As the year comes to an end, the Gaza Strip is preparing to return to the familiar, suffocating financial crises that is sure to result from Qatar’s ending its grant to poor families. Qatari envoy in the Strip, Mohammed al-Emadi, has informed Hamas and other terror factions there that his government is having difficulties renewing the grant, Al-Akhbar reported Tuesday.

These funds did not cover all of Gaza’s poor families, and the most each lucky family received was $100 each month, but it was a reliable stopgap measure to stave off the explosion that’s sure to come without this charity. There will be two more payments until the end of 2019, Al Emadi told the local leaders, after which they are on their own.

Over the weekend, Hamas made it clear that it was blocking the security escalation with Israel and is not interested in keeping it up. But then, on Monday, Yahya Sinwar, the Hamas leader in Gaza, bragged that he had been the one to determine in recent years whether or not there would be war.

Kan 11 TV on Monday night provided a glimpse into the other wars Hamas has been waging: internal leadership wars, a cruel, Darwinian effort to literally “thin the herd” with violent border fence riots, and an unofficial operation to induce as many as 200,000 Gazan youths to using drugs, mostly hashish and opiates – to help them forget the hardships of their daily lives.
Hamas official: Egypt has barred Haniyeh from traveling abroad for past 3 years
Egyptian authorities have barred Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh from traveling outside the Gaza Strip and Egypt for almost three years to prevent him from meeting with their political rivals, a senior official in the terror group said in an interview published Tuesday.

The last time Haniyeh traveled beyond Gaza and Egypt was in late 2016 and early 2017 before he was elected Hamas head.

“The Egyptians are not permitting the head of the politburo to travel abroad because they do no want him to meet their political rivals,” Musa Abu Marzouk, a senior official in the terror group, told Dar al-Hayat, an Arabic-language news site. “This ban [has been in place] for about the last three years.”

Hamas, which frequently meets with Egyptian intelligence officials mediating between the terror group that rules the Strip and Israel, also maintains close ties with countries that Cairo views as foes such as Qatar and Turkey.




In chilling detail, ex-envoy to US Oren warns of Israel-Iran ‘conflagration’
Former Israeli ambassador to the US Michael Oren has described in chilling detail how a conflict between Israel and Iran could easily be sparked and descend into a massive conflagration, devastating Israel and other countries in the region.

Israel is already girding for a war with the Islamic Republic, and has carried out hundreds of strikes against Iran-linked targets in Lebanon, Syria and Iraq. A single miscalculation during one of those airstrikes could draw retaliation by Iran, Oren wrote in a column published in The Atlantic on Monday.

“The senior ministers of the Israeli government met twice last week to discuss the possibility of open war with Iran,” he began. “Israeli troops, especially in the north, have been placed on war footing. Israel is girding for the worst and acting on the assumption that fighting could break out at any time. And it’s not hard to imagine how it might arrive. The conflagration, like so many in the Middle East, could be ignited by a single spark.”

An Israel Defense Forces bombing run could inadvertently hit a sensitive target, or an Israeli official could step out of line and say something to embarrass Iran following an attack, Oren wrote.

“The result could be a counterstrike by Iran, using cruise missiles that penetrate Israel’s air defenses and smash into targets like the Kiryah, Tel Aviv’s equivalent of the Pentagon. Israel would retaliate massively against Hezbollah’s headquarters in Beirut as well as dozens of its emplacements along the Lebanese border. And then, after a day of large-scale exchanges, the real war would begin,” he continued.
The Revolt Against Iran
Unsurprisingly, Iran and its allies in Iraq and Lebanon are blaming recent unrest on the usual suspects: a conspiracy of foreign actors that includes the United States, Saudi Arabia, and the Zionists.

How will this end? In 2008, civil unrest led to Hezbollah’s armed seizure of Beirut. Hezbollah and Iran have poured thousands of fighters and billions of dollars into neighboring Syria to help crush the rebellion against their Syrian ally. In 2009, Iran’s green movement protests over stolen elections finally ebbed in the face of torture, beatings, and detentions meted out by the regime. “We in Iran know how to deal with protests,” Iran’s second-most powerful man assured Iraqi officials this month. “This happened in Iran and we got it under control.”

Ten years ago, when Iran saw its largest uprising since the 1979 revolution, Obama was not only reluctant to express solidarity with Iranians, he also refused to acknowledge the rigged elections, dismissed advisers who urged active assistance, and blocked CIA resources earmarked for supporting democratic uprisings. In The Iran Wars, former Wall Street Journal reporter Jay Solomon reveals how Obama’s peculiar reticence was largely motivated by his worry that American involvement would ruin his secret overtures to Tehran in hopes of brokering an agreement. While President Trump has also expressed a desire to strike a deal with Iran, he has already retweeted two videos of Iraqi demonstrators storming the Iranian consulate in Karbala. Whether this administration is able to leverage these protests into successful policy beyond tweets remains to be seen. And perhaps more importantly, it is too early to tell whether the nascent political revolts in Lebanon and Iraq can survive the backlash from Iranian-backed militias and snipers long enough to evolve into a meaningful, organized political opposition.
Rep. Cheney to Introduce Legislation Mandating Full Dismantling of Iran Nuclear Deal
Rep. Liz Cheney (R., Wyo.) will soon introduce new legislation that would compel the Trump administration to eradicate the remaining vestiges of the landmark Iran nuclear deal, the lawmaker told the Washington Free Beacon.

Cheney's legislative effort comes as GOP hawks in Congress have launched an offensive against the Trump administration's decision to again grant Iran sanctions waivers that permit it to conduct sensitive nuclear work, including at an underground bunker site that once housed the regime's atomic weapons program.

The legislation is yet another sign of mounting frustration among hawkish Republicans over the Trump administration's mixed signals on Iran. Critics allege the administration is backtracking on its own "maximum pressure" campaign on Iran in order to preserve possible diplomacy with Tehran down the road.

The Free Beacon reported last week that the Trump administration's State Department had signed off on the nuclear waivers, despite public and private pressure from anti-Iran voices on Capitol Hill. The debate marks one of the clearest divides yet between typically faithful Trump administration supporters in Congress and those inside the administration.

Cheney told the Free Beacon that the waivers have helped legitimize Iran's nuclear infrastructure and paved a way for it to continue working on sensitive nuclear issues with help from countries such as China and Russia.
The Islamic Zealots Who Seized U.S. Embassy 40 Years Ago Today Weren't 'Students'
These were first and foremost religious zealots blindly following the will of clerics (Ali Khamenei and Mousavi Khoeini among them) who often visited the hostages, too. Many attended Amir Kabir University, "strictly allied with Khomeini and the new Mullah establishment," according to Mark Bowden in Guests of the Ayatollah (2006). As Bowden puts it, they "were all committed to a formal Islamic state and were allied, some of them by family, with the clerical power structure around Khomeini."

Bruce Laingen, who was the chargé d'affaires at the embassy, wrote in his journal that Khoeni was "the clerical link with the 'students' at the embassy since the day of the seizure and . . . the link before that, too, in the planning for the seizure." On July 21, 1980, he wrote with certainty that Khoeni was Khomeini's "liaison with the 'students' of the embassy" and that there "can be no question of the extent to which the clerical forces are solidly in control."

The term "students" was inaccurate and misleading in 1979, and it is all the more so now. After four decades, the time has come finally to get it right.


40 Years On: How US-Iran Hostility Affects the World Today
With anti-American slogans and effigies mocking President Donald Trump, thousands rallied outside the former US embassy in Tehran on Monday to mark the 40th anniversary of the Iran hostage crisis. Amid renewed tensions with Washington, state television showed rallies taking place in several other cities, including Mashhad, Shiraz and Esfahan, four decades after revolutionary students stormed the diplomatic mission. "They will continue their enmity against us. They are like a lethal scorpion whose nature is to have a poisonous sting," the head of the army, General Abdolrahim Mousavi, said in a speech at Tehran. "We are ready to crush this scorpion and will also pay the price."






We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
          

11/04 Links Pt1: The missing billions of the Palestinian Authority; The delusional one-state solution; Netanyahu: Arab Countries Now See Israel as an ‘Indispensable Ally’ Against Iran

 Cache   
From Ian:

PMW: The missing billions of the Palestinian Authority
Since its creation, the Palestinian Authority has received tens of billions of dollars of international aid. Just since 2011, the European Union, the United States, and other countries have provided the PA with hundreds of millions of dollars and euros of aid.

While the PA has constantly complained about its financial difficulties, scrutiny of the PA’s own financial records for the years 2011 - 2018, shows that the PA transferred from its coffers over 7 billion shekels to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), some of which was then given to terrorist organizations. In that same period, the PA also spent over 440 million shekels to fund its non-functioning institutions.

Funding to the PLO and internationally designated terrorist organizations

The PLO, which is also headed by PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, is an umbrella organization for several Palestinian groups. The largest and most dominant member is Abbas’ Fatah party. Other members include groups designated as terror organizations by the US and the EU such as the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and the Palestinian Liberation Front. PLO members are entitled to and receive funding from the PLO.

While international donors have demanded that the PA show financial transparency, the PLO is not subject to any financial regulation or demands of transparency. Accordingly, it is impossible to know what happens with billions of dollars of donor money the PA has given and continues to give today to the PLO.

Only on sporadic occasions are the financial workings of the PLO exposed. In June 2018, a senior PFLP official, Maher Mazhar, complained that the PFLP was not getting its monthly allocations from the PLO.

Denying the claim of the PFLP, PLO Executive Committee member and Fatah Central Committee member Azzam Al-Ahmad confirmed that Abbas and the Palestinian National Fund - the financial branch of the PLO - are responsible for funding the PFLP, and stressed that the allocations had not been stopped:

“PLO Executive Committee member [and Fatah Central Committee member] Azzam Al-Ahmad denied that the allocation from the Palestinian National Fund to any Palestinian organization, including the Popular Front [for the Liberation of Palestine] (PFLP), has been stopped. In a telephone conversation with Al-Ahmad from Amman, he said: ‘There is no truth to the rumors that [PA] President Abbas or any other party has stopped the allocation to the PFLP.” [Ma’an, (Independent Palestinian news agency), June 17, 2018]
The delusional one-state solution
Events like the Jaffa Riots of 1921 (95 dead) and the Riots of 1929 (249 dead) were a common fixture. When all out war inevitably emerged in 1948 due to Arab rejection of a Jewish state, it ended with the permanent exile of up to 90% of Palestinians from Israeli-controlled territory. Nothing unusual here. Population transfers are a common result of intrastate ethnic conflict. Those wishing to alleviate Palestinian hardship should consider this when contemplating a situation that would result in a power struggle similar to what emerged following the British Mandate.

And a power struggle it will be. One-staters envision shared governance between Jews and Arabs, who will work together under a liberal democratic framework, but the Palestinians have proven unable to do this even amongst themselves. Two years after Israel withdrew from Gaza, Hamas overthrew the PLO and instituted a totalitarian Islamist regime.

Things are not much better in the West Bank, where President Mahmoud Abbas is now in his 15th year of a four-year term. The “occupation” cannot be blamed. After all, pre-state Israel somehow managed to uphold democratic norms under the brutality of the British Mandate. Democracy is simply not presently part of the Palestinian lexicon.

The same goes for the “liberal” part of “liberal democracy.” Polls by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center show that the Palestinians hold beliefs vehemently at odds with an inclusive society. A majority support honor killings, and 93% of the population harbors antisemitic views, according to the Anti-Defamation League.

Before the one-state solution as envisioned by Palestinian advocates is even discussed, Palestinians have a very long way to go. Looking at examples from the broader region, there’s good reason to believe that an Israeli-Palestinian utopia will forever remain a pipe dream.

Understandably, as US President Donald Trump continues to delay his vision for resolving the conflict, ideas counter to the mainstream two-state solution will be discussed. Some are worse than others, but few are as bad as the one-state solution.
Trump’s Middle East shake-up led to killing of al-Baghdadi
As it turns out, the killing of both Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and his heir apparent, Abu Hassan al-Muhajir, was a direct result of Trump’s shake-up of the pre-existing order in northern Syria and northern Iraq. While it should be obvious, it bears repeating: the media and the American people are not privy to the vast trove of intelligence the commander in chief has at his fingertips. This is particularly important in the complex and multidimensional Middle East, where alliances and verbal agreements are the rule, rather than the exception.

We think in black-and-white terms, but the truth is often closer to gray and white, or black and gray. I have many theories as to just how our US special forces pulled off this miraculous assault against the No. 1 terrorist in the world, but overall, I would venture that what it boils down to is that the president caught al-Baghdadi off-guard.

Al-Baghdadi was no doubt celebrating America’s pullout from the region and got careless. Essentially, it flushed him out into the open. He was planning a new barrage of terror, especially against the Kurds and Yazidis. What he was not prepared for was the determination and steadfastness of Trump. He miscalculated regarding our president and suffered the consequences.

By taking out al-Baghdadi and al-Muhajir, Trump has now sent the clearest message yet to all of our enemies, including Iran and North Korea, that he means business. This was and is a major turning point in his presidency, and it is a crying shame that he can’t seem to get one iota of credit for it from his political opponents.

In the final analysis, the American people will ultimately decide how much credit to give him. I am a firm believer they will be much kinder and wiser judging his record in hindsight.




Netanyahu: Arab Countries Now See Israel as an ‘Indispensable Ally’ Against Iran
The Arab world’s perception of Israel is undergoing a seismic shift, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday.

Addressing a 200-strong crowd in Jerusalem at the kick-off event of the Christian Media Summit and inauguration of the Friends of Zion Museum’s new media center, Netanyahu said Israel has gone from being perceived as an enemy in the region to being seen as an “indispensable ally.”

“Something very big is happening: the transformation of Israel in the minds of many in the Middle East. It’s no longer being perceived as an enemy. We’ve become an indispensable ally against the enemy of militant Islam,” he said.

As evidence, Netanyahu cited the lack of violence following US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and then later of Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

“People said there would be a tremendous convulsion. But what happened? Nothing,” said Netanyahu.

The Friends of Zion Museum in Jerusalem is an interactive facility that harnesses Christian support to combat BDS and antisemitism.

The impetus behind the Arab world beginning to band together with Israel, said Netanyahu, was Iran. Israel’s goal, he said, was “to make sure that Iran does not develop nuclear weapons and that its march toward an empire and conquest has stopped.”

Netanyahu praised US President Donald Trump’s decision to impose hefty economic sanctions on Iran to curb its nuclear program, but said that “if Israel was not here, Iran would already have nuclear weapons.”


Thanks to the Likud, Israeli Arabs Are Flourishing
During Benjamin Netanyahu’s long tenure in office, and contrary to widespread perceptions that he is anti-Arab, the Jewish state’s Arab citizens have seen major social and economic improvements. Netanyahu himself displayed his characteristic savvy and tenacity in pushing through an important 2015 measure to increase government investment in Arab communities. Drawing on an interview with Ron Gerlitz—a staunchly leftist activist who advised the government in devising and implementing these policies—Netta Ahituv explains what they have accomplished. (Free registration required.)

Over the past seven years, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics, the number of Arab students enrolled in universities and colleges in Israel has risen by 80 percent. Over five years the number of Arabs studying computer sciences, and the number of Arab students pursuing master’s degrees in all fields have both jumped 50 percent, while the number studying for a PhD has soared 60 percent.

In the last decade, the number of Arabs working in high-tech has increased eighteenfold, and one-quarter of them are women. . . . The proportion of Arab doctors in Israel has climbed from 10 percent in 2008 to 15 percent in 2018, and 21 percent of all male doctors are Arab, according to the Health Ministry. Educational institutions in Arab locales are receiving unprecedented levels of funding—including 130 million shekels ($37 million) for informal-education programs. Moreover, public transportation is finally making inroads into the smaller Arab towns, to the point where the Bank of Israel recently declared that the gap in access to such transport between Jewish and Arab locales with fewer than 20,000 residents has shrunk considerably.


In the interview, Gerlitz notes that some of the ministries that have contributed the most to these improvements have done so under the direction of right-swing politicians, such as Likud’s Yisrael Katz and the Orthodox Shas party’s Aryeh Deri. And he notes other kinds of good news as well, including major changes in the labor market:

Government investment, on the one hand, and a new spirit in Israeli Arab society, on the other, has led to Arabs enrolling in higher education and working in both the public and private sectors; [in fact], the proportion of Arab civil servants rose from 5.7 percent in 2007 to 11.3 percent in 2017.
Arabs and Jews speak up for Israel and foster coexistence
Israel is often accused by her enemies of being an apartheid state. Nothing could be farther from the truth. As one who grew up under the apartheid system in South Africa, I can attest to this. Arab citizens of Israel are accorded the same rights as any other citizen. They travel on our public transportation in safety without the fear of being attacked. They walk freely around our neighborhood streets, play with their children in the local parks, attend the local movie theaters, eat in Israeli restaurants, and are treated in all Israeli hospitals.

Until not long ago, some of the Hamas terrorist officials were sending their relatives to be treated in Israeli hospitals. The practice was stopped at the behest of the Hamas leadership, who forbade their citizens from seeking treatment in Israel – despite medical services in Gaza being woefully inadequate.

In Jerusalem, many of the main pharmacies are staffed and managed by Arab citizens. Arab women wear the Hijab and are often seen shopping in Israeli shopping malls and supermarkets with their husbands and families. Many of the doctors and specialists in Jerusalem are from the Arab sector. A friend’s daughter gave birth to her child at Hadassah-University Medical Center, on Jerusalem’s Mount Scopus. She shared a ward with another expectant mother who also happened to be Arab. The obstetrician was a Muslim Arab from East Jerusalem.

“He was outstanding,” our friend told us. “Apart from being an excellent doctor, he was also so kind and considerate. In fact, my daughter was so impressed with him that she asked if she could come and see him at his consulting rooms in East Jerusalem. Unsurprisingly, he advised against it. He told her that it would not be safe for her to come to the neighborhood where he worked.”

Many years ago, a few years after the Six Day War, I lived in Jerusalem for a short while. In those days relations between Jewish and Arab citizens were particularly cordial to the extent that we young people would patronize some of the Arab discotheques. This was before the days of fundamentalism (on both sides). We spent many Saturday nights learning the moves of the exotic oriental disco music. Both Arabs and Jews mingled on the dance floor and had a great time. We shopped in the Arab shuk, and would regularly visit the souvenir stores of Bethlehem and Beit Jala.

Despite the feeling of gloom and hopelessness, there are chinks of light. One of my first voluntary activities was to coach young Israelis. I ended up coaching two remarkable young people. One was an Israeli Arab from a virulently ant-Israeli town in the north, where “A” was brought up to hate Israelis and Jews. When the IDF offered young Arab youths the opportunity to attend an engineering course for free, A decided to sign up.

“After all,” he told me, “anything we could take from the Israelis for free was almost considered an obligation.”

A recounted his first encounter with Israelis. He was surprised and almost shocked to discover how friendly and “nice” the personnel were.
JPost Editorial: Gaza policy
Ten rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip at the South on Friday night. Although they were fired after a month of relative calm, it’s hard to say they came out of the blue. Israelis, and particularly residents of the western Negev, are aware that rocket attacks from Gaza can happen at almost any time.

The main difference with the rockets this weekend was that they did not seem to be fired for any particular reason. There had been no Israeli operation in the area and no casualties in the ongoing “March of Return” border protests. The rockets, one of which scored a direct hit on a home in Sderot, were reportedly fired by Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and not Hamas, which controls the Strip.

Although this is not the first time, this should be of concern because the large number of rockets launched indicates that Hamas might be losing its grip to more radical terrorist organizations, and that an internal struggle among these terrorist groups could result in them trying to gain points by attacking Israel or even trying to drag Israel into an escalated conflict.

Until now, Israel has seen Hamas as in control and responsible for what happens in Gaza. But it should be kept in mind that PIJ is affiliated with Iran and relies on the Islamic Republic for funds and weapons. In this sense, the events in the South cannot be seen in isolation from the tension with Iranian-proxy Hezbollah on the northern border.

The general opinion seems to be that Hamas is not interested in another mini-war with Israel – what would be the fourth serious conflict since 2008 – and Israel does not want another war on its southern border.

The fact that there is not a fully functional government following two rounds of elections – and a serious possibility now of a third round – might act as an encouragement to the terrorists in Gaza. It will be clear to the Palestinian extremists that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu does not want to face a third election in a state of war on the southern border.
Only Decisive Action on the Ground, Not Precision Firepower from Afar, Can Defeat Israel’s Enemies
In its conflicts fought in the past two decades with Hamas in Gaza and Hizballah in Lebanon, the IDF has a used a strategy based on the combination of precision weapons with detailed intelligence. David M. Weinberg, basing himself on a recent, extensive report, argues that this doctrine has proved to be a failure, and calls for a return to the military principles that served the Jewish state so well in the first three decades of its existence:

In most clashes, a deleterious dynamic has repeated itself. At first, Israel successfully launches a salvo of firepower based on accurate intelligence gathered over a long period of time. Then follows a decline in the quality of targeting intelligence with an attendant reduction in the number of targets that justify a strike, and a recovery by the enemy and a continuation of its attacks against Israel.

Subsequent Israeli frustration leads to attacks on targets with high collateral damage or on useless targets, alongside an immense effort to acquire new quality targets, which can lead to an occasional success but does not alter the general picture. What follows is a prolonged campaign—leading to public anger and frustration—and a maneuver by ground forces that is not sufficiently effective to bring the enemy to the point of collapse.

Consequently, a return to combat along more traditional lines is inevitable in many cases. This means maneuvering into enemy territory, locating and destroying enemy forces (or capturing them, thus undermining the myth of the self-sacrificing jihadist “resistance”). Only this will break the spirit of the enemy.

Consider this, too: while no large conventional armies today threaten Israel, the situation could change. If a radical Muslim Brotherhood regime should rise in a country like Egypt, or if the Syrian army is rebuilt after that country’s civil war, the IDF must be ready. Bear in mind that building ground forces is a complex process that takes time. Neglecting IDF ground-maneuver capabilities is therefore a dangerous gamble.
Caroline Glick “The Joint Arab List is Unified to Wipe Israel Off the Map”
The Joint Arab List is a political party in Israel’s parliament. It currently has 13 seats.

The only way the Anti-Bibi Netanyahu forces can form a government without Netanyahu is if it has the support of this Joint Arab List party. Yet how can any Israeli, or Israel supporter, support having this list or these politicians in an Israeli government or even in Israel’s parliament?

Nobody else is saying the truth about this party like Caroline.

Israeli Transportation Ministry Pushing ‘Sovereignty Through Transportation’
Israel’s Transportation Minister Bezalel Smotrich is pursuing a policy that would bolster the road and rail infrastructure in Judea and Samaria with the goal of creating de facto annexation of the territories, according to a report by Israel Hayom.

The program, described by the ministry as “sovereignty through transportation,” would see the road connecting Jerusalem to Gush Etzion expanded at a cost of about NIS 1 billion ($283 million). A major new road from Gush Etzion southward would be built at a similar cost under the plan.

According to Smotrich’s office, this new policy, which includes additional projects, is designed to “end the current isolation of Judea and Samaria when it comes to transportation planning, so that the area is just like any other region in Israel.”

To promote this agenda, Smotrich has also created a special bureau for Judea and Samaria planning in his ministry. He has also had Judea and Samaria transportation projects integrated with national projects so that the residents of those areas can have their concerns addressed over the long term.

This means that a variety of issues that have previously been ignored by state agencies will have proper oversight, including road safety. It would also allow residents of Judea and Samaria to use the same general monthly or daily public transportation passes used all over Israel, known as the Rav Kav.
EU slams Israel for okaying 2,342 settler homes, road that ‘fragments’ West Bank
The European Union on Monday condemned Israel after construction plans for 2,342 settlement homes were green-lighted last month.

The bloc said its position on Israel building in the West Bank remains unchanged: “All settlement activity is illegal under international law and it erodes the viability of the two-state solution and the prospects for a lasting peace.”

The EU also criticized the decision to approve the expansion of a road that connects settlements to Jerusalem while bypassing Bethlehem, referred to by locals as the tunnel road, saying it is “entrenching the fragmentation of the West Bank.”

The Peace Now settlement watchdog has speculated that the project would “dramatically increase the number of settlers in the Bethlehem area.”

The bloc made its statement after the Civil Administration’s High Planning Subcommittee — the Defense Ministry body responsible for authorizing settlement construction — published on Thursday the protocol from a meeting it held earlier this month when it made the approvals, capping off a record year for such plans since US President Donald Trump took office.

The quarterly session was the last held during the 2019 calendar year, during which plans for 8,337 homes were advanced — the most since 2013. Each of Trump’s nearly three years in office saw an increase in settlement approvals, with 6,742 green-lit in 2017 and 5,618 advanced in 2018.
This Ongoing War: In Washington, a step towards bringing the Sbarro bomber to justice
So did the legislators ask King Abdullah II to extradite Tamimi so she can be put on trial for the terrorism charges she faces in Washington? We still don't know and it's not for lack of trying. But at least we know now this isn't because Jordan is free of the obligation to hand her over. We know the State Department has an actual view on this. That view is the Jordanians surely are obliged and that justice demands it.

Jordan's government tracks what was published in yesterday's Country Report about Jordan and Ahlam Tamimi. We know because it's a front page item in today's Jordan Times, the English-language newspaper said to be controlled by the government (and which blocks us on Twitter):

The US Department of State has hailed Jordan as a “committed partner” in counterterrorism and countering violent extremism (CVE). In its Country Reports on Terrorism 2018, the Department of State commended Jordan’s “leading role” in the global coalition to defeat the Daesh terror group...

Hailed and commended, yes. As for the State Department report saying the US regards the extradition treaty as valid, that part the authoritative Jordanian daily's editors simply ignore. They just choose not to report it. And for those laboring under the illusion of a free, liberal and fair-minded Hashemite Kingdom, you might want to glance at "20-Jan-18: Shutting down media critics in Jordan isn't quite the challenge it might seem to be". According to Freedom House, Jordan has one of the world's most unfree news industries, media and human rights environments.

Nonetheless, what's just happened amounts in our eyes to a welcome step in the direction of overdue justice.
Jordanians held in Israel to be sent home, Amman set to return envoy after row
Two Jordanian nationals who were recently detained by Israel will return to the Hashemite Kingdom in the coming days, authorities in both countries said Monday.

Ayman Safadi, Jordan’s foreign minister, made the announcement on Twitter Monday afternoon. It was later confirmed by Israeli authorities, who pointed to the importance of Jerusalem’s ties with Amman.

Heba al-Labadi and Abdel Rahman Miri were detained several months ago over suspicions of ties to terror groups and held without charge, sparking a diplomatic row between Jerusalem and Amman.

Jordan recalled ambassador to Israel Ghassan Majali last week to protest the pair’s detention.

“Heba al-Labadi and Abdel Rahman Miri will return home before the end of the week,” Safadi tweeted.

“The government has worked to secure their release since the first day [they were arrested] in accordance with strict instructions from his Majesty King Abdullah II to take all measures necessary to bring them back safely,” he added.

Israel detained Labadi, 32, and Miri, 29, at the Allenby crossing in the Jordan Valley on August 20 and September 2, respectively. The Palestinian Authority Prisoners Affairs Commission has said that both of them were held under administrative detention orders.

Administrative detention is a measure that allows Israel to detain certain suspects for months at a time without indicting them or presenting details of the accusations against them.
'We'll turn Israeli cities into ghost towns,' Hamas leader warns
If Blue and White leader Benny Gantz "dares" to order a "foolish operation" against the resistance movement in the Gaza Strip, he will "rue the day he was born," leader of the Hamas in Gaza Yahya Sinwar declared on Monday.

Sinwar was speaking in response to remarks Gantz made about a possible military response to rockets fired from the Gaza Strip toward southern Israel.

In a meeting at which Hamas' politburo leader Ismail Haniyeh and UN Special Coordinator for the Gaza Strip Sergey Mladenov were also present, Sinwar called Gantz "the next leader of the occupation."

According to a report on the Al Ghad TV station, at a separate meeting with young people in Gaza, Sinwar said, "If Israel continues to tighten the siege on Gaza, we'll shoot rockets at Tel Aviv for six months straight. We'll turn the cities of Israel into ghost towns."

Over the past few days, Sinwar had made a number of stringent anti-Israeli declarations. In an interview Sunday, he said that a prisoner exchange deal was not currently possible because of the political situation in Israel and the "leadership vacuum it has created."

Sinwar also said that "They don't even have a government that can agree on a budget, or a limited government to discuss security issues such as the Iranian threat, for example."
How Hezbollah Recruits Palestinian Terrorists
A lot of attention has been devoted to the Islamic State’s use of the Internet to inspire or direct international terrorist attacks. But little has been written about how Hezbollah uses similar approaches to recruit and execute attacks. A new study published this month in the CTC Sentinel explores this development by analyzing several cases of Hezbollah’s alleged social media efforts to recruit Israeli Arabs and Palestinians to kill Israelis.

From the end of 2015 through 2017, both the Islamic State and Hezbollah recruited terrorists outside their base countries using social media and encrypted communications platforms to help people form cells and conduct terrorist attacks abroad. Several high-profile Islamic State virtual plots were carried out successfully, killing people in Europe and beyond during this period. Hezbollah, on the other hand, has thus far failed to execute an attack using Palestinians recruited online. But foiled, covert plots still point to a major, yet poorly understood, terrorist threat to Israel. By hiding behind anti-Israel Facebook groups, Hezbollah can oversee plots from afar, at a limited cost to the organization.

The latest study compares and contrasts six publicly available cases of Palestinians recruited by Hezbollah handlers online. In each case, Hezbollah operatives develop ties with individual Palestinians through anti-Israel Facebook groups. After establishing a relationship, the Palestinian recruit is instructed to continue discussions over encrypted email and other communications platforms. The recruit is then asked to form cells with other trusted people in the West Bank. According to the analysis, all of the recruits and cell members were young men from across the West Bank between the ages of 18-32. The sole exception was 49-year-old Mustafa Ali Mahmoud Basharat — who did not make it very far in the planning process before Israel foiled that plot.

In most cases, Hezbollah used secure platforms to send instructions on how to build explosive devices. Palestinian recruits usually conducted surveillance of Israeli military targets, unless Israeli authorities disrupted the cell early on the planning process. Hezbollah’s instructions ranged from kidnapping Israelis, carrying out bombings, and conducting shooting attacks against Israeli military targets. In one case, a Hezbollah-led cell started to build explosives to use in a suicide bombing targeting an Israeli bus.
It’s Time for the US and NATO to Give Turkey the Boot
No wonder. Despite a long, friendly relationship with Turkey, Ankara under Islamist strongman Recep Tayyip Erdogan has become increasingly belligerent towards the United States and our allies, especially Israel, and, most recently, the Syrian Kurds.

Turkey’s invasion of Syria this month to subdue US Kurdish allies has generated condemnations from Western European and Arab nations, as well as from Russia, India, China, and, surprisingly, even Iran

But this is only the latest dust-up: Erdogan’s Turkey is guilty of a string of international offenses.
In 2015, Turkey, unprovoked, shot down a Russian fighter jet.
To Egypt’s annoyance, Turkey supports its enemy, the radical Islamist Muslim Brotherhood.
Erdogan frequently issues antisemitic calumnies, is a reliable foe of Israel, and in 2010 attempted to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza, which ended in the deaths of 10 Turkish activists.
Turkey deployed a team of thugs to the streets of Washington, DC to abduct anti-Erdogan Turkish activists.
Turkey illegally occupies most of Cyprus.
After buying American F-35 fighter jets, Erdogan contracted with Russia to purchase anti-aircraft batteries against stern US objections.
Erdogan runs Turkish politics with an authoritarian fist, just a short step from totalitarianism

To make matters worse, Turkey is a member of NATO, and the alliance’s only Eurasian member; all others are North American or European, but Turkey has been in the group since 1952. Under Erdogan’s leadership, Turkey has moved further from the goals and policies of other NATO members, often standing in stark opposition to the body’s will, as it is currently doing in Syria.

US Vice President Mike Pence insisted that “the United States of America is not going to tolerate Turkey’s invasion of Syria any further.” Defense Secretary Mark Esper is encouraging NATO members to take “diplomatic and economic” measures against Turkey. President Donald Trump threatened Erdogan with devastating economic sanctions, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo noted that “military action” may be needed.
Turkey’s Erdogan May Call Off US Trip After Congress Votes: Officials
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan may call off a visit to Washington next week in protest at votes in the House of Representatives to recognize mass killings of Armenians a century ago as genocide and to seek sanctions on Turkey, three Turkish officials said.

Erdogan is due in Washington on Nov. 13 at President Donald Trump’s invitation, but said last week that the votes put a “question mark” over the plans.

“These steps seriously overshadow ties between the two countries. Due to these decisions, Erdogan’s visit has been put on hold,” a senior Turkish official said, adding that a final decision had not been taken.

Turkish sources say Trump and Erdogan have a strong bond despite anger in Congress over Turkey’s Syria offensive and its purchase of Russian air defenses, and despite what Ankara sees as Trump’s own erratic pronouncements.

Those personal ties could be crucial given NATO member Turkey’s purchase of Moscow’s S-400 missile defense system, which under US law should trigger sanctions.

Turkey is already suspended from the F-35 fighter jet program in which it was both joint producer and customer, and the offensive it launched against Kurdish forces in northeast Syria on Oct. 9 set the stage for further US retaliation.
Turkish pro-gov media orders Qatar to 'weed out' critical journalists
In a withering attack on Al Jazeera and Qatar, the pro-government Daily Sabah slammed Al Jazeera English for being critical of Turkey’s foreign policy and demanded that it “weed out” journalists.

Turkey, which Amnesty International calls “the world’s largest prison for journalists,” appears to be using its far-right nationalist media to try to order Qatar to muzzle Al Jazeera in English. The lead editorial at Daily Sabah calls the network a “threat against the Turkey-Qatar alliance.”

The editorial begins by noting that Turkey and Qatar are “strategic partners” and accuses Israel and other countries of “ganging up” on Qatar. But the Turkish newspaper accuses Al Jazeera English, “Qatar’s flagship news channel,” of “spreading anti-Turkey propaganda under the pretext of independent and objective journalism.” Turkey’s pro-government media now accuses Qatar’s media of “jumping on the Western media’s Turkey-bashing bandwagon” and “smearing last month’s Turkish operation into northeastern Syria.”

The US State Department slammed Turkey on Saturday as one of the “worst offenders” in crimes against journalists. Amnesty International says Turkey has arrested hundreds of people for being critical of Turkey’s invasion of Syria. The Daily Sabah article now reflects Turkey’s demands that regional media of other authoritarian states abide by Turkey’s demands and control critical journalists. There can be no critique of Turkey’s military operation, either in Turkish media or abroad.
Turkey vows to return jihadists to countries that revoked their citizenship
Turkey said Monday it would send jihadist prisoners back to their countries of origin, regardless of whether they had been stripped of citizenship.

Interior Minister Soleyman Soylu said Turkey had nearly 1,200 foreign members of the Islamic State terror group (IS) in custody, and had captured 287 during its recent operation in northern Syria.

“Of course, those that are in our hands, we will send them back to their countries,” he said, state news agency Anadolu reported.

“However, the world has devised a new method. They say ‘Let’s strip them of their citizenship… Let them be tried where they are.’

“It is impossible for us to accept this view… We will send Daesh (IS) members to their countries whether they strip them of their citizenship or not,” he added.

It remains unclear whether Turkey will be able to do so in practice.

Western countries have often refused to accept the repatriation of citizens who left to join IS in Syria, and have stripped many of their citizenship.

Although under the New York Convention of 1961, it is illegal to leave someone stateless, several countries, including Britain and France, have not ratified it, and recent cases have triggered prolonged legal battles.
JCPA: The Mystery Successor of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
U.S. intelligence officials told the New York Times that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi paid sums of money to the “Hurras al-Din“ (Guardians of Religion Organization) which is affiliated with al-Qaeda, to provide protection for ISIS members and their families, who fled Deir ez-Zor and Mosul.

The main difference between ISIS and al-Qaeda was that ISIS initiated the establishment of the Caliphate through the occupation of huge territories in Iraq and Syria and founded the “Islamic State,” whose capital was Raqqa. Al-Qaeda, meanwhile concentrated on establishing its affiliates in various parts of the world.

As a result of ISIS’s success, terrorist branches in various parts of the world such as Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and other South Asian countries, such as the Philippines and Myanmar abandoned al-Qaeda and swore allegiance to ISIS instead.

The death of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is a severe blow to the morale of ISIS, but ISIS has already lost leaders such as Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and Abu Omar al-Baghdadi, so the death of the latest leader may be a temporary blow from which the organization can recover.

The new leader of ISIS will find it very difficult to re-take control of the vast territories the “Islamic State” lost in Syria and Iraq and will have to devise a new strategy.

The dream of the Islamic Caliphate ended even before Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s death.

ISIS’s new leader is now expected to become the number one target of U.S. intelligence, who the U.S. will also seek to assassinate because ISIS and its new leader pose a threat to U.S. national security.
Protests in Iraq Have Turned against Iran
At the beginning of last month, anti-corruption demonstrations spread through Iraq. They were put down, violently, by the government, sometimes with the help of the Iran-backed militias that have come to exert increasing influence in the country. The deaths of protestors at the hands of these militias have, however, only stoked popular anger and diverted much of it toward the Islamic Republic itself. David Adesnik and Nicholas Wernert write:

From the onset of the unrest, Tehran has played an integral role in shaping Baghdad’s response. After the first protests, Qassem Soleimani, commander of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force, the organization’s expeditionary branch, flew to Baghdad and—in place of the prime minister—chaired a meeting of Iraq’s top security officials.

The U.S. has supported the elected Iraqi government’s efforts to assert the rule of law over the militias, yet their parliamentary factions serve as key power brokers in Baghdad. The current protests also demonstrate Iraqi voters’ complete loss of confidence in their prime minister, in part because of his failure to resist Tehran.

Until now, the U.S. government has been extremely hesitant to designate Iraq’s Iran-backed militias as terrorist organizations, fearing a potential popular backlash. Yet Iraqis’ own resentment of Iran’s proxy forces is now obvious. Washington therefore should designate these groups [as terrorists] under human-rights as well as counterterrorism authorities in order to highlight their atrocities and demonstrate that America stands with the Iraqi people.
Iraqi security forces open fire on protesters, killing 5
At least five people were killed as Iraqi security forces opened fire on protesters in Baghdad on Monday, a Reuters witness said, as thousands continued to gather in the largest wave of anti-government protests for decades.

A Reuters witness saw one man shot dead, his body carried away by fellow protesters, when security forces opened fire with live rounds on demonstrators near Baghdad's Ahrar bridge.

A Reuters cameraman saw at least four others get killed.

However, security and medical sources put the toll at one dead and 22 wounded, adding that rubber bullets and tear gas, not live ammunition, were used. The Interior Ministry could not be immediately reached for comment.

More than 250 Iraqis have been killed in demonstrations since the start of October against a government they see as corrupt and beholden to foreign interests.
‘Death to America! Death to Israel!’ Iran marks 1979 takeover of US Embassy
Reviving decades-old cries of “Death to America,” Iran on Monday marked the 40th anniversary of the 1979 student takeover of the US Embassy in Tehran and the 444-day hostage crisis that followed as tensions remain high over the country’s collapsing nuclear deal with world powers.

Demonstrators gathered in front of the former US Embassy in downtown Tehran as state television aired footage from other cities across the country.

“Thanks to God, today the revolution’s seedlings have evolved into a fruitful and huge tree that its shadow has covered the entire” Middle East, said Gen. Abdolrahim Mousavi, the commander of the Iranian army.

However, this year’s commemoration of the embassy seizure comes as Iran’s regional allies in Iraq and Lebanon face widespread protests. The Iranian Consulate in Karbala, Iraq, a holy city for Shiites, saw a mob attack it overnight. Three protesters were killed during the attack and 19 were wounded, along with seven policemen, Iraqi officials said.

Associated Press video showed a fire burned the consulate’s gate as demonstrators threw gasoline bombs and climbed its walls, some waving an Iraqi flag. Iranian media only reported a “protest outside” of the diplomatic post, adding that things had returned to normal.
Iran announces fresh violations of nuclear deal with extra, advanced centrifuges
Iran on Monday broke further away from its collapsing 2015 nuclear deal with world powers by announcing it’s doubling the number of advanced centrifuges it operates, calling the decision a direct result of President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the agreement.

The announcement — which also included Iran saying it now has a prototype centrifuge that works 50 times faster than those allowed under the deal — came as demonstrators across the country marked the 40th anniversary of the 1979 US Embassy takeover that started a 444-day hostage crisis.

By starting up these advanced centrifuges, Iran further cuts into the one year that experts estimate Tehran would need to have enough material for building a nuclear weapon — if it chose to pursue one. Iran long has insisted its program is for peaceful purposes, though Western fears about its work led to the 2015 agreement that saw Tehran limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions.

Tehran has gone from producing some 450 grams (1 pound) of low-enriched uranium a day to 5 kilograms (11 pounds), said Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran.

Salehi dramatically pushed a button on a keyboard to start a chain of 30 IR-6 centrifuges at Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility, where he was being filmed, increasing the number of working centrifuges to 60.
Iran remains worst state-sponsor of terror, works with al-Qaeda
The US State Department’s new report on terrorism lists the Islamic Republic of Iran as the top international state-sponsor of terrorism and cites Tehran’s work with facilitating the activities of Sunni terrorist organization al-Qaeda.

“Iran remains the world’s worst state sponsor of terrorism,” noted the document titled, “Country Reports on Terrorism 2018” that was released on Friday. “The regime has spent nearly one billion dollars per year to support terrorist groups that serve as its proxies and expand its malign influence across the globe. Tehran has funded international terrorist groups such as Hezbollah, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad. It also has engaged in its own terrorist plotting around the world, particularly in Europe.”

The report said that “Tehran continued to allow an AQ [al-Qaeda] facilitation network to operate in Iran, which sends fighters and money to conflict zones in Afghanistan and Syria, and it has extended sanctuary to AQ members residing in the country.”

“At the same time, the United States and its partners continued to pursue al-Qa’ida (AQ) globally, and the United States applied maximum pressure on Iran-backed terrorism, significantly expanding sanctions on Iranian state actors and proxies and building stronger international political will to counter those threats,” the State Department said.

Germany and the EU have refused to designate Hezbollah’s entire organization a terrorist group. According to German intelligence reports reviewed by The Jerusalem Post, 1,050 Hezbollah members and supporters operate in Germany. The Hezbollah operatives raise funds for Hezbollah in Lebanon, recruit new members and spread antisemitic and jihadi ideologies in Europe. The Netherlands, Canada, the US, Israel, Britain and the Arab League proscribed Hezbollah’s entire entity a terrorist organization.

“Hezbollah remained Iran’s most powerful terrorist partner and the most capable terrorist organization in Lebanon, controlling areas across the country,” wrote the State Department’s counterterrorism experts. “Iran’s annual financial backing to Hezbollah – an estimated US $700 million per year – accounts for the overwhelming majority of the group’s annual budget. Hezbollah’s presence in Lebanon and Syria continued to pose a threat to Israel.”
European Union warns Iran over nuclear deal after uranium claims
The European Union on Monday warned that it could back away from supporting the Iran nuclear deal, after Tehran announced a major increase in enriched uranium production.

Following a series of steps away from its commitments under the 2015 accord, the head of the Iranian atomic energy agency said Monday that production of enriched uranium had reached five kilos a day and two new advanced centrifuges had been developed.

Maja Kocijancic, spokeswoman for EU diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini, said that the EU’s backing for the deal depends on Tehran keeping up its end of the pact.

She said the bloc “took note” of the announcement but would wait for confirmation by the UN International Atomic Energy Agency before responding.

“We have continued to urge Iran to reverse such steps without delay and to refrain from other measures that would undermine the nuclear deal,” Kocijancic told reporters in Brussels, saying the EU “remained committed” to the nuclear deal.

“But we have also been consistent in saying that our commitment to the nuclear deal depends on full compliance by Iran.”
Iran's decision to speed up uranium enrichment 'unacceptable,' says German FM
Iran's announcement that it has developed advanced machines to speed up its uranium enrichment jeopardizes an agreement with world powers, Germany's foreign minister said on Monday, urging Tehran to return to the original accord.

"Iran has built very advanced centrifuges, which do not comply with the agreement," German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas told a news conference in response to a question about the announcement.

"They have announced in early September that they would not comply with the nuclear accord and we think this is unacceptable," he said through an interpreter.

On Monday, Iran broke further away from its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers by announcing it was doubling the number of advanced centrifuges it operates, calling the decision a direct result of US President Donald Trump's withdrawal from the agreement.

The announcement – which also included Iran saying it now has a prototype centrifuge that works 50 times faster than those allowed under the deal – came as demonstrators across the country marked the 40th anniversary of the 1979 US Embassy takeover that started a 444-day hostage crisis

By starting up these advanced centrifuges, Iran further cuts into the one year that experts estimate Tehran would need to have enough material for building a nuclear weapon – if it chose to pursue one.






We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.
          

Points shared in landmark World Cup qualifier between North and South Korea

 Cache   
Gianni Infantino looked on but there were no fans in attendance as North Korea and South Korea drew 0-0 in a World Cup qualifier on Tuesday.
          

North Korea slams door on Japan PM Abe visit, calls him a 'moron'

 Cache   
North Korea on Thursday called Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a moron who should not even dream of setting foot in Pyongyang in a state media commentary laden with insults in response to his criticism of the North's latest weapons test.
          

Pompeo seeks faster progress with North Korea after rockets

 Cache   
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Friday that negotiations with North Korea were going too slowly after Pyongyang fired two more short-range projectiles. Pompeo downplayed Thursday’s...
          

Kudankulam cyber attack: North Korean hackers stole technology data

 Cache   

Suspected North Korean hackers stole technology-related data from the computers at Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant. The cyber attackers, who deployed a malware designed for data theft, were backed by the North Korean government, said IssueMaker Labs, an expert group of malware analysts based in South Korea. “We have found that Nuclear Power Plant technology-related data […]

The post Kudankulam cyber attack: North Korean hackers stole technology data appeared first on Netive.


          

What It’s Like to Run a Marathon in North Korea

 Cache   

VICE Sports BEST DEAL UPDATE:

The post What It’s Like to Run a Marathon in North Korea appeared first on Gabby Love.


          

Seoul deports two men to North Korea for murdering 16 fishermen

 Cache   
In an extremely unusual case, South Korea on Thursday deported two North Koreans after finding out they killed 16 fellow crew members on their boat then fled to South Korean waters, Seoul officials said.The two men in their 20s were sent back to the North through the truce village of Panmunjom on the border.“The government has decided to deport them as they have committed a heinous crime. They cannot be treated as refugees under international laws,” ministry spokesman Lee Sang-min said. “They…
          

North Korea Journal by Michael Palin EPUB

 Cache   
none
          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

Sky News witnesses 'spectacular' explosions on North Korea 'nuclear site'

 Cache   

Sky News witnesses 'spectacular' explosions on North Korea 'nuclear site'Sky News has witnessed the demolition and closure of what North Korea says is its nuclear weapons test site in Punggye-ri.



          

Sky News witnesses 'spectacular' explosions on North Korea 'nuclear site'

 Cache   

Sky News witnesses 'spectacular' explosions on North Korea 'nuclear site'Sky News has witnessed the demolition and closure of what North Korea says is its nuclear weapons test site in Punggye-ri.



          

Forthcoming March 17th 2020: 88 Names by Matt Ruff

 Cache   

The critically acclaimed author of Lovecraft Country returns with a thrilling and immersive virtual reality epic—part cyberthriller, part twisted romantic comedy—that transports you to a world where identity is fluid and nothing can be taken at face value. John Chu is a “sherpa”—a paid guide to online role-playing games like the popular Call to Wizardry. For a fee, he and his crew will provide you with a top-flight character equipped with the best weapons and armor, and take you dragon-slaying in the Realms of Asgarth, hunting rogue starships in the Alpha Sector, or battling hordes of undead in the zombie apocalypse. Chu’s new client, the pseudonymous Mr. Jones, claims to be a “wealthy, famous person” with powerful enemies, and he’s offering a ridiculous amount of money for a comprehensive tour of the world of virtual-reality gaming. For Chu, this is a dream assignment, but as the tour gets underway, he begins to suspect that Mr. Jones is really North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, whose interest in VR gaming has more to do with power than entertainment. As if that weren’t enough to deal with, Chu also has to worry about “Ms. Pang,” who may or may not be an agent of the People’s Republic of China, and his angry ex-girlfriend, Darla Jean Covington, who isn’t the type to let an international intrigue get in the way of her own plans for revenge. What begins as a whirlwind online adventure soon spills over into the real world. Now Chu must use every trick and resource at his disposal to stay one step ahead—because in real life, there is no reset button. https://www.harpercollins.com http://www.bymattruff.com https://www.goodreads.com  

The post Forthcoming March 17th 2020: 88 Names by Matt Ruff appeared first on More2Read.


          

Two North Korean fishermen kill 16 crew members before fleeing to South - only to be deported back

 Cache   
The men, both in their 20s, were handed over at Panmunjom in the demilitarised zone on Thursday - the first time the South has deported North Korean nationals since 1953.
          

Top Stories Today

 Cache   

Top Stories Today


My Friend Mister Rogers

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 07:22 AM PST

I first met him 21 years ago, and now our relationship is the subject of a new movie. He's never been more revered — or more misunderstood.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Here Are Some Insane Slides From SoftBank's Presentation Explaining (?) How It Will Fix WeWork

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 08:56 AM PST

"So this time, the earnings results announcement is not good at all," said SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son at the start of the company's quarterly earnings call on Wednesday.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Polyglot Bets Random Strangers He Can Speak Their Language

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 06:57 AM PST

Wouter Corduwener speaks many languages and bet random people €5 he could speak theirs. Here's how he did.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Driver Blows Past School Bus With No Intention Of Stopping, Receives Some Instant Karma

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 06:08 AM PST

At the very least, this is an example of reckless driving.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

I Was The Fastest Girl In America, Until I Joined Nike

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 05:44 AM PST

Mary Cain's male coaches were convinced she had to get "thinner, and thinner, and thinner." Then her body started breaking down.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

I Tried To Get My DNA Back From 23AndMe. Here's What Happened

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 05:24 AM PST

Concerned that my spit sample had already been sold to one of 23andMe's Big Pharma partners, I offered to swing by the office and pick it up myself.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Owner Sleeps In Great Dane's Bed. Great Dane Is Not Happy About It

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 04:26 AM PST

Never mind the countless times the Great Dane has occupied his owner's bed — this is his bed and he will. not. share.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

An Elderly Hawaiian Man Died After Falling Into A Lava Tube Hidden In His Backyard

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 05:54 AM PST

"You could be standing on one and not even know it," one volcanologist said.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Why xHamster Is So Much Better At Content Moderation Than Facebook

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 08:23 AM PST

Laws hold the porn industry accountable for dangerous content — and it's thriving nonetheless.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

This Dog Has Learned To Talk Using Buttons — And She Says Exactly What You'd Expect

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 02:06 PM PST

We don't deserve dogs.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Watching This Ceramics Master Make Plates For Michelin-Starred Restaurants Is The Highbrow ASMR You Need Today

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 07:56 AM PST

This is one of those things that looks easy but is actually incredibly difficult to do, isn't it?

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Preparing For The Inevitable Thousand-Year Storm

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 08:21 AM PST

Sprawl has made the Baltimore suburb Ellicott City more vulnerable to climate change — in the last three years, it's already suffered two thousand-year storms.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

15 Gifts For The Person Who Thinks They're Tougher Than Bear Grylls

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 02:40 PM PST

We've all got that outdoorsy friend. You know, the one who thinks Bear Grylls is weak and Survivorman was staged and if they were stranded out in the woods, they'd create the greatest Discovery Channel show of all time. Well, this holiday season, it's time to call their bluff.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Cat Persuades Owner To Go Outside In The Winter, Immediately Regrets It Once He's Outside

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 07:31 PM PST

This cat is all of us when winter hits.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

The New Dot Com Bubble Is Here: It's Called Online Advertising

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 06:05 AM PST

Where he came from, a Super Bowl ad cost three million dollars. Why? Because that's how much it cost. What does it yield? Who knows.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Kid Doing The Worm Behind CNN Correspondent Jim Acosta Steals The Show At Louisiana Trump Rally

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 07:19 PM PST

Before Trump's Louisiana rally could begin tonight, CNN correspondent Jim Acosta was totally upstaged by a talented kid with a sense of humor.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

A Photographer's Ode To Everyday Soviet Architecture

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 07:07 AM PST

Areniy Kotov finds inspiration in urban exploration and concrete cityscapes.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

What Happens When You Tweet A Death Threat To The President?

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 04:54 AM PST

Quite possibly the worst tweet you can send.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Here's The Teaser Trailer For Pixar's New Film 'Soul,' A Movie About A Jazz Musician Who Accidentally Dies

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 07:18 AM PST

Jamie Foxx plays Joe Gardner, a jazz musician in New York City who embarks on a fantastical journey after he passes away. "Soul" will come out in 2020.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

The 2010s' Most Important Games

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 06:41 AM PST

Still a relatively young industry, gaming has mutated massively over the course of the last decade — and it's been a weird 10 years for video games.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

'Country Road' Road Sung In A Minor Key Is Freaky (But In A Good Way?)

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 04:44 AM PST

"The place where I belong" is now a haunting, mournful place.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Who Is The Real Dice Man? The Elusive Writer Behind The Disturbing Cult Novel

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 05:20 AM PST

A search for the mysterious author of a counterculture classic led to someone else entirely. Or did it?

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Millennials Will Get Sick And Die Faster Than The Previous Generation

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 04:11 AM PST

Physically speaking, we're actually healthier than our predecessors, but statistically, it doesn't really matter.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Watch The Bloodhound LSR Supercar Hit 501 MPH

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 07:57 AM PST

The run is the latest in a series of practice runs as the Bloodhound team attempts to crack the 1000 mph barrier.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Why We Are All Losing Sleep

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 07:31 AM PST

With longer work hours, the rise of the gig economy and smartphone apps competing for our every waking moment, sleep has become the final frontier of consumer capitalism. No wonder we're so tired.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

The Mississippi River's Hidden History, Uncovered By Lasers

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 05:59 AM PST

Using hyperprecise LiDAR data, a cartographer maps the river's bends and channels over time with mesmerizing results.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Inside The Microsoft Team Tracking The World's Most Dangerous Hackers

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 04:05 AM PST

From Russian Olympic cyberattacks to billion-dollar North Korean malware, how one tech giant monitors nation-sponsored hackers everywhere on earth.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

The Greatest Unknown Intellectual Of The 19th Century

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 06:43 AM PST

Emil du Bois-Reymond proclaimed the mystery of consciousness, championed the theory of natural selection, and revolutionized the study of the nervous system. Today, he is all but forgotten.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Oops, This Teppanyaki Trick Sure Did Not End Well

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 04:29 AM PST

The customer here was meant to catch the egg the chef lobbed at him in his bowl. Let's just say it went a bit sideways.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

You Are About To Become A Pocket Projectionist

Posted: 14 Oct 2019 08:19 AM PDT

This mini projector will let you throw an 80 inch image against the wall for movie night everywhere.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

The Rise And Fall Of WeWork

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 05:29 AM PST

All of the employees described a similar emotional trajectory working at WeWork. The first stage was romance.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Why Planes Aren't Allowed To Fly Over Lionel Messi's House

Posted: 05 Nov 2019 08:59 AM PST

You might be surprised about the rules governing air space.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

The Top-Selling Musician From Each State, Mapped

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 10:44 AM PST

The top-earning music artists from each state in 2019, from Ariana Grande (Florida) to Wiz Khalifa (North Dakota?!).

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Attorney General Declined Trump Request To Declare Nothing Illegal In Ukraine Call

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 05:47 AM PST

President Trump asked Attorney General William P. Barr to hold a news conference stating that no laws were broken in his call with Ukraine's president. Mr. Barr declined.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Former Twitter Employees Charged With Spying For Saudi Arabia

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 04:51 AM PST

The case raises concerns about the ability of tech firms to protect users' data from repressive governments.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Timing Is Of The Utmost Importance In This Incredible Bowling Ball Trick Shot

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 12:03 PM PST

The best trick shots are the kind that require teamwork.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Where Do Hippos Wander? An Aquatic Mystery, Solved

Posted: 04 Nov 2019 07:26 AM PST

Hippos need water to survive — and water is disappearing, leading to growing social unrest among the beasts.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

After Five Years Of Amazon's Alexa, Why Isn't It Better?

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 01:48 PM PST

Half a decade after its launch, Alexa is a household name. But there's a lingering question: has Amazon's assistant actually become more useful? For me, the answer is a clear "no."

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

James Dean, Who Died In 1955, Just Landed A New Movie Role — Thanks To CGI

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 01:27 PM PST

The directors claim that he was perfect for the role, but it's a troubling change in Hollywood.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Company Insiders Are Selling Stock During Buyback Programs And Making Additional Profits When Stock Prices Jump. And It's Legal

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 04:08 AM PST

At least 500 insiders sold their stock during active buyback programs at their companies in a 15-month period.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Billy Eichner Asks A Woman Whether She'd Rather Sleep With Chris Evans Or Paul Rudd — With Both Of Them Standing Right There

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 11:05 AM PST

Also featuring Chris Evans's worst nightmare: "a bunch of lesbians that don't care that he's hot."

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

Modern Apartments Have More Fungi Than A Jungle Hut

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 03:00 PM PST

Despite urban dwellers using more cleaning products and antifungals, their homes foster more microbes than rural houses do.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

What To Eat Before Making A Big Decision

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 10:33 AM PST

Can carbs derail your entire future?

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

The Good Internet Is History

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 02:59 PM PST

The internet, notoriously, is the mechanism by which all our most embarrassing and evil deeds live on forever, but it's also a fragile, immaterial place. The keystroke of a petty billionaire could take thousands upon thousands of words away without warning, and the snip of an underwater cable could take it all away irrevocably. But even without such an extinction-level event, what's lost on the internet threatens to be lost for good.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

This Chair Is An Optical Illusion, But For Your Entire Body

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 03:18 PM PST

Is Escher missing a chair? This must be his.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

I Have No Idea What I'm Doing

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 08:26 AM PST

My washing machine has fourteen settings, but I wash everything on the "casual" setting, because it seems like the least risky one.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

This Is What Loneliness Looks Like On Twitter

Posted: 06 Nov 2019 01:50 PM PST

Psychologists are discovering just how much information about our inner states can be gleaned from social media.

This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now


          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

North Korea: US’ ‘Provocative’ Air Exercises Put Nuclear Talks on ‘Verge of Extinction’

 Cache   

In a recent statement, a Pyongyang official slammed Washington’s upcoming joint air exercises with Seoul, labeling them a “wet blanket”...
          

South Korea deports North Korea fishermen who killed crew

 Cache   

Two North Korean fishermen have been deported after they were found to have killed 16 fellow crew members on their...
          

North Korean fishermen suspected of killing 16 of their crew members

 Cache   

A trio of North Korean fishermen slaughtered 16 fellow crew members — including their captain, officials said Thursday. Two of...
          

If North Korea and Japan went to war, South Koreans would support Kim Jong-un, says new survey

 Cache   

In news that may shock many outside the Korean Peninsula, a recent survey found that, were conflict to erupt between...
          

North Korea slams door on Japan PM Abe visit, calls him an ‘idiot’

 Cache   

North Korea on Thursday called Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe an “idiot and villain” who should not even dream of...
          

North Korean fishermen ‘killed 16 colleagues’ before fleeing to South

 Cache   

The suspects reportedly killed the captain first, followed by other crew members who protested.
          

South Korea repatriates two North Koreans accused of murdering crew mates

 Cache   

South Korea’s military on Thursday repatriated two North Korean escapees accused of involvement in a series of murders, the country’s defense...
          

US deputy assistant state secretary on N. Korea says Korean War needs to end

 Cache   

Alex Wong, US deputy assistant secretary of state for North Korea, said on Nov. 5 that the war on the...
          

Controversy regarding N. Korea’s ability to launch an ICBM from a TEL

 Cache   

Is North Korea capable of launching an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) from a transporter erector launcher (TEL)? Attention is focusing...
          

South Koreans Are Pleading for a Breakthrough in the US–North Korea Talks

 Cache   

Tim Shorrock

“We are on the cusp of a dangerous time,” a peace delegation declared at the UN.

The post South Koreans Are Pleading for a Breakthrough in the US–North Korea Talks appeared first on The Nation.


          

South Korea deports two murder suspects back to North Korea

 Cache   
South Korea deported two men back to North Korea after authorities say they killed 16 crew members on a squid-catching boat.

          

South Korea deports 2 North Koreans who killed 16 at sea

 Cache   

Gephardt Daily
South Korea deports 2 North Koreans who killed 16 at sea

Two North Koreans who killed 16 fellow crew members on a squid fishing boat were repatriated by South Korean authorities on Thursday after being captured at sea near the Northern Limit Line, a maritime boundary off South Korea's east coast, the Unification Ministry said.

The post South Korea deports 2 North Koreans who killed 16 at sea appeared first on Gephardt Daily.


          

Nuclear Reactors 730 - The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in India Was Attacked By A North Korean Computer Virus

 Cache   

     Pukhraj Singh is a former analyst at India’s National Technical Research Organization (NTRO). In a report, he connected a malware report published by VirusTotal to a cyberattack on the computers at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP). Singh says that a North Korean virus called Dtrack managed to achieve “domain-controller level access” at Kudankulam.


          

Loyal North Korean seamen feared the Pong Su's captain would be executed

 Cache   

The drug ship's captain was sick, pale and worried. But the situation almost got out of hand when Australian soldiers tried to take him away.
          

Don't Sleep on North Korea's Large (But Really) Old Submarine Fleet

 Cache   

Don't Sleep on North Korea's Large (But Really) Old Submarine FleetIt only takes one torpedo to kill a lot of people.



          

Crash Landing on You

 Cache   
Title: 사랑의 불시착 / Crash Landing on You
Also known as: Love’s Emergency Landing / Love’s Crash Landing / Crash Landing of Love / Emergency Love Landing
Genre: Drama, romance, comedy
Episodes: 16 (To Be Confirmed)
Broadcast network: tvN
Broadcast period: 2019-Dec-07 to 2020-Jan-26
Air time: Saturday & Sunday 21:00 Synopsis The series tells the secret romance between a South Korean heiress of a conglomerate and a high-ranking North Korean officer. Yoon Se Ri (Son Ye Jin) is an heiress to a conglomerate in South Korea. (Continue Reading & Discuss)
          

November 9th marked the end of an era. It should be world-wide day of celebration.

 Cache   

by Rod Williams - Saturday will come and go with almost no mention that that day was the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.  It is a shame. November 9th should be a National holiday. Or better yet, it should be a worldwide holiday. It should rival a combination of New Years’ Eve and the 4th of July. There should be concerts, parades, dancing in the street, Champagne toast, ringing of church bells, and fire works.

On November 9, 1989 the Berlin Wall fell and the world changed forever. As the world watched, we did not know if Russia would send in troops to put down the rebellion or not. We did not know if East German guards would fire on their fellow citizens. In 1958 an uprising in Hungary was crushed. In 1968 the Czech rebellion was likewise suppressed. As we watched in 1989 it was hard to believe that the East German rebellion would end differently, but there was reason to hope.

There was reason to believe that there were few true believers in Communism left behind the Iron curtain. Gorbachev, to save Communism, had launched Perestroika and Glasnost, which had not saved Communism but sealed its fate. The Soviets had been forced to realize that they could not outspend the west in the arms race. The Solidarity union movement had sprung up in Poland and not been crushed and Catholicism had a Polish pope who was encouraging the Catholics behind the Iron Curtain to keep the faith, and America had a president who said his goal was not to co-exist with Communism but to defeat it. The West was more confident and the East seemed exhausted.

With modern communications and contact between the captive peoples of the East and the free people of the West, Communist governments could no longer convince their people that Communism was a superior way to organize society. And, for the first time, attempts to spread Communism had failed. From the tiny island of Granada, to Nicaragua, to Afghanistan, attempts at expansion had met with failure. When the demonstrators in East Germany began chipping away at the wall, the guards did not fire, the Soviets did not send in tanks and the walls came tumbling down.

It would still be a couple more years before the other Communist dominoes fell, but one by one they did, except for the two dysfunctional states of North Korea and Cuba. China did not fall, but morphed into a state that Marx or Mao would not recognize. It is only nominally communist. China became a mixed economy with an repressive authoritarian one-party government and it is now flexing its muscle and threatening its neighbors, but it is not spreading an ideology to change the world.

From the time of the establishment of the first Communist state in Russia in 1917, Communism had steadily grown taking root in country after county until by the time of the fall of the Berlin wall 34% of the worlds populations lived under Communist domination. And by peaceful means, Communism was gaining ground in much of the west with “Euro-communism” gaining acceptance and becoming parties in coalition governments.

For more than seventy years, freedom had been on the defensive and Communism had been ascending. During that time, approximately 100 million people were killed with a brutal efficiency. Approximately 65 million were killed in China under Mao Zedong, 25 million in Leninist and Stalinist Russia, 2 million in Cambodia, and millions more in Eastern Europe, Africa, and Latin America. This was accomplished by mass murders, planned famines, working people to death in labor camps, and other ruthless methods. From the thousands of Cossacks slaughtered on the orders of Lenin to the victims of Mao’s “land reform” the totals mounted. In addition to the millions of deaths, many more millions spend part of their lives in prison in the Gulag of Russia and the reeducation camps of Vietnam and China. Those who never spend part of their life in real prisons, lived in societies with secret police, enforced conformity, thought control, fear, scarcity, and everyone spying on everyone else.

While the world looked with horror on the approximate 11 million victims of Hitler’s Europe, for some reason less attentions has been paid to the 100 million victims of Communist tyranny. While the Nazi era lasted for only 11 years, the Communist terror began in 1917 and continues to this day. The story would be complete if the last Communist regime fell, but the fall of the Berlin Wall is a landmark event. By the fall of the wall, it was clear that Communism was not the wave of the future and that freedom would survive in the world.

Not only would freedom survive in the world, but the world itself would survive. It is easy to forget what a dangerous place the world was on the eve of the fall of the Berlin Wall. The world's nuclear stockpiles had grown to 70,000 warheads, with an average destructive power about 20 times that of the weapons that were dropped on Japan. One deranged colonel, one failure of a radar system, or one misreading of intentions could have led to events that destroyed the world. We were one blink away from destruction of life on earth. If there is any event in the history of world worthy of celebrating, it should be the fall of the Berlin Wall.


Next Page: 10000

© Googlier LLC, 2019