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|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 groupCache
|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.|
|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.|
(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 firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Tobin Harshaw at email@example.comThis 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 VirusCache
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 VirusCache
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 VirusCache
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.
|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 …
|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.|
The new publication 'Model City Pyongyang' is a photographic journey through the architecture of North Korea’s ‘model’ utopia.
|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.|
|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.|
United Nations committee accuses North Korea of using a Hong Kong blockchain firm as a front to launder funds
|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]
|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. |
A policy landscape of sexual orientation, gender identity and the internet
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
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.
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.
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
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”.
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.
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
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
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
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:
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 5, Taiwan has 4, the Netherlands has 4, Germany has 3, Denmark has 3, South Korea has 3, Saudi 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.
|Cache||Smiling Grape Adventure Tours, based in Cambridgeshire, will take guests to Pyongyang's best pubs, bars and microbreweries in March 2020.|
|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 SouthCache
|South Korea says it deported 2 North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen and fled to South|
|Cache||The launches followed statements of displeasure by top North Korean officials over the slow pace of nuclear negotiations with the United States. |
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 […]
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 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 TrumpCache
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.
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.”
“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.
|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.
|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.
Author: Claire Solery (https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=User:Claire_Solery&action=edit&redlink=1)
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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...|
|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.|
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South Korea says it has deported 2 North Koreans after finding they had killed 16 fellow fishermen onboard and fled...|
|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.|
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.
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.
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”.
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.
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.
After grisly murders at sea, North Koreans deported from South after unannounced capture and swift investigation
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 ...|
|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.|
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 […]
|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|
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."
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...
|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 […]|
|Cache||The suspects reportedly killed the captain first, followed by other crew members who protested.|
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.
In 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.
|Cache||In 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.|
|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|
|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!|
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
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.
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From Russian Olympic cyberattacks to billion-dollar North Korean malware, how one tech giant monitors nation-sponsored hackers everywhere on earth.
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World: U.S. Agency for International Development Administrator Mark Green's Remarks at a "Celebrating World Humanitarian Day" EventCache
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
Center for Strategic and International Studies
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?
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.
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.
|Cache||Authorities say the two men had killed 16 fellow fishermen on their boat and then fled to South Korea.|
"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.
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.
|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|
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
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.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.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.
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.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.
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.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: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.
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.
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.
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: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.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.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.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: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: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.”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.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.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.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.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.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.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.
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 2.0Cache
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.
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.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.
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.”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.
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.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”.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.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.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.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.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.
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.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.”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).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.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.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.
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.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.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.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.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 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.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.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.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.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.
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.
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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 BDSCache
‘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.
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.”
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.
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.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.
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.'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.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.
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.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.
Turkey protected Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
Turkey protected ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi – and Trump should have known.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.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.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.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.”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 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.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.
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.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.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.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."
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."
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 IranCache
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.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.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.
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.
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.)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.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.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: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.
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.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.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.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.'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.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.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 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.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 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.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.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: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.‘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.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.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.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.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.
|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.|
|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.|
|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...|
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.
VICE Sports BEST DEAL UPDATE:
|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…|
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.
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.
In a recent statement, a Pyongyang official slammed Washington’s upcoming joint air exercises with Seoul, labeling them a “wet blanket”...
Two North Korean fishermen have been deported after they were found to have killed 16 fellow crew members on their...
A trio of North Korean fishermen slaughtered 16 fellow crew members — including their captain, officials said Thursday. Two of...
In news that may shock many outside the Korean Peninsula, a recent survey found that, were conflict to erupt between...
North Korea on Thursday called Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe an “idiot and villain” who should not even dream of...
The suspects reportedly killed the captain first, followed by other crew members who protested.
South Korea’s military on Thursday repatriated two North Korean escapees accused of involvement in a series of murders, the country’s defense...
Alex Wong, US deputy assistant secretary of state for North Korea, said on Nov. 5 that the war on the...
Is North Korea capable of launching an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) from a transporter erector launcher (TEL)? Attention is focusing...
“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.
|Cache||South Korea deported two men back to North Korea after authorities say they killed 16 crew members on a squid-catching boat.|
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.
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.
|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)
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.
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