Gates of Vienna News Feed 6/12/2013

The Dutch national secondary school examinations have been thrown into chaos by the discovery that 15 exams were stolen and distributed by students at Ibn Ghaldoun Islamic school in Rotterdam. The exam papers were taken by students from the school vault.

In other news, a Danish politician has urged citizens to patronize only native Danish prostitutes, because the vast majority of foreign-born prostitutes, many of them underage, are thought to be victims of people-traffickers.

To see the headlines and the articles, click “Continue reading” below.

Thanks to Andrea Shea King, C. Cantoni, Fjordman, Insubria, JD, JP, LS, Pundita, Saxum Mons, Seneca III, Steen, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

Financial Crisis
» Debt ‘Irish Bailout Costs British Taxpayers an Extra £10bn’
» Exports Down for Almost All of Italy
» Greece: Mass Firings Seen Set at ERT Radio-TV
» Italy: MPS Executives to Stand Trial in September
» Italy: Facing Eviction, Man Jumps to His Death From Upper Window
» Kyle Bass: “This Ends in War; The Government’s Never Going to Tell You That It’s Going to Happen.”
» Privatizations: No Interest: Greece Starts DEPA Bid Anew
» Spain: ‘Catalonia’s Welfare State Depends on Deficit Relief’
» 322 IRS Visits to White House
» Benghazi, IRS, AP Scandal, Are We Being Played?
» Beyond the Military-Industrial Complex
» Congressman Ted Poe: ‘The Government Spooks Are Drunk on Power’
» Coulter: If the GOP is This Stupid, It Deserves to Die
» Developing Now: Life in Obama’s America
» DHS Admits Boston Training Drill Involving Backpack Explosives Planned Months Before Marathon
» DHS Wants Equipment for “Riot Control Situations”
» DHS-Funded Exercise Portrays “Free America Citizens” As Terrorist Cell
» Government Keeps List of 8 Million Names Considered Threats
» IRS Exempts Terror Front Group Over Tea Party
» Maryland Sheriff Opposes State’s Gun Regulations
» NSA Surveillance: Anger Mounts in Congress at ‘Spying on Americans’
» Obama Calls Constitution ‘Charter of Negative Liberties’
» Obama Identity Fraud: The Net Closes In
» Obama Quietly Raises ‘Carbon Price’ As Costs to Climate Increase
» Rep. Steve Stockman Says Obama Uses NSA on Tea Party, Protects Terrorists
» Ron Paul: Why Are Republicans Defending Obama Over NSA Spying?
» School Upholds Suspension of Student Who Shaped Pop-Tart Gun
» School Choice is America’s Trojan Horse
» The Fuse Has Been Lit: Seven Critical Points on Uncle Sam’s Spying Program
» The NSA Data Mining Matters
» The Rest of the World is Absolutely Disgusted With Our Big Brother Spying Methods
» Troops ‘Targeted by NSA for Anti-Obama Views’
» What is the Government’s Agenda?
» Why the Surveillance State Must be Erased
» You Can’t Outleft the Left
Europe and the EU
» Danish Supermarket Gets Shipment of Cocaine, Instead of Bananas
» Denmark: NSA Surveillance Foiled Jyllands-Posten Terrorist Attack, US Says
» French Gov’t to Dissolve Far-Right Groups After Student Killing
» German Authorities Worry About Growing Salafism
» International ‘Europe-China Trade War Looms’
» Islamist Terror Suspect Held in Italy
» Italian Antitrust Authority Probing Major Insurers
» Italy: Prosecutors Ask for 12-Year Sentence for Ex-Abruzzo Governor
» Italy: Milan Commuter Trains Hit by Copper-Wire Theft
» Italy to Release 4,000 Prisoners: Minister
» ‘Media May Call Sweden Democrats Xenophobic’
» Netherlands: Fifteen National Exams Leaked Through Islamic School
» Spain: Five Islamist Terrorists Seized in Barcelona
» UK: After Attacks on Mosques and Schools, British Muslims Say, ‘We’re Stronger Together’
» UK: BBC Crticised Over Today Interview With EDL Leader Tommy Robinson
» UK: Bricklayer Attacked Mosque in “Revenge”, Court Told
» UK: Boxer Who Threatened Muslims With ‘Insane Violence’ While Posing With a Gun on Day of Murder of Lee Rigby is Jailed
» UK: EDL Leader Tommy Robinson Threatens Nazi Salute Members With ‘Violent Act’
» UK: Hats Off to Sarah Montague
» UK: New Terror Control Regime ‘Will Let Suspect Back on the Streets’
» UK: Preying on the Poor: The Impoverished London Borough Which Has Eighty Two Betting Shops (That’s Six Per Square Mile)
» UK: Staff at East London Gym Held on Suspicion of Spying on Naked Women
North Africa
» Italian Diplomats Escape Libya Car Bomb
Israel and the Palestinians
» Children Take Up Arms in Gaza in Summer
Middle East
» New Iran Crisis Looming
» Syria: United for Reconciliation With Muslims, Christians Return to Al-Qusair
» Syria: ‘Rebels Kills 60 Shia Fighters Near Iraqi Border in East’
South Asia
» 2 Killed, 2 Injured in South Thailand Attacks Ahead of Peace Talk
» Gunmen Kidnap British Energy Worker in Indonesia
» How the MOD’s Strategy in Afghanistan Helped the Taliban — Not Our Troops
Far East
» I’m ‘Not a Traitor, ‘ NSA Leaker Edward Snowden Tells Hong Kong Newspaper
» Three Astronauts Are Blasted Into Space as China Launches Mission to Orbit the Earth From a Remote Site in the Gobi Desert
Australia — Pacific
» GMO Feed Turns Pig Stomachs to Mush! Shocking Photos Reveal Severe Damage Caused by GM Soy and Corn
» Inside the Gallipoli Mosque in Auburn, Sydney
Sub-Saharan Africa
» Manual Left Behind in Mali Suggests Al Qaeda Training to Use Feared Surface-to-Air Missile
» Denmark: ‘Use Danish Prostitutes’ Says Anti-Immigrant MP
» In ‘Fixing’ Immigration, The Fix is in
» Senator Rand Paul’s Keynote Speech at Immigration Forum
» Spread the Word What the Senate is Doing
» Turks Charged With Aiding Illegal Immigration Into Italy
Culture Wars
» Italy: Group Sorry for Pope ‘Gay Lobby’ Report
» Pope Admits There is a ‘Gay Lobby’ At the Highest Levels of the Vatican
» TV’s Feckless Fathers ‘Give Dads a Bad Name’: Programmes Attacked for ‘Casual Contempt’ Of Men
» Islam’s Dangerous Absurdities
» Meat Scrap Leftovers Now Being Reprocessed Into Ice Cream: The Dismal Future of Food

Debt ‘Irish Bailout Costs British Taxpayers an Extra £10bn’

The Times, 10 June 2013

Britain has provided £10bn (€11.8bn) in “back-door bailout” funding since 2008 to prop up the struggling Ulster Bank, a subsidiary of the nationalised Royal Bank of Scotland, writes The Times

The government provided cash to keep the bank afloat instead of handing the loss-making group to the Irish government, which could have had a catastrophic impact on the Irish economy.

The daily reports that unlike the decision to offer a £3.25bn direct loan to Ireland in 2010, which was only approved after a parliamentary vote, this more significant financial support did not get the express approval of MPs.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Exports Down for Almost All of Italy

Only north-west bucks trend

(ANSA) — Rome, June 11 — Almost every area of recession-hit Italy saw its exports to other parts of the world drop in the first quarter of this year, Istat said Tuesday in its regional breakdown of its balance-of-trade data.

The national statistics agency said exports for the south, Sicily and Sardinia were down 7.8% on the last three months of 2013, while the north-east and central Italy both saw them decline 0.9%.

Only the north-west bucked the trend with a 0.5% rise in the first quarter compared to the October-December period.

Compared with the first quarter of 2012, between January and March exports decreased for north-east by 0.8%, for the south by 6.0% and for Sicily and Sardinia by 9.7%.

The year-on-year figures were up 2.2% for the centre and stationary for the north-west.

Exports for Italy as a whole were 0.7% down in the first quarter with respect to the same period in 2012.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Greece: Mass Firings Seen Set at ERT Radio-TV

(ANSAmed) — ATHENS, JUNE 11 — Under the pressure of the Troika for the shrinking of the public sector staff, Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras’ government is planning radical changes in the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation (ERT), the Greek state-owned public radio and television broadcasting corporation. The government, as GreekReporter writes, is considering using a large part of the special tax paid by Greek citizens for ERT (that is included in electricity bills) in order to cover other needs. ERT’s revenues are estimated to be around 300 million euros. Around 88% of ERT’s funding comes from television license fees. The government is already using 25% of these revenues for renewable energy sources. ERT’s future is dark, as reports are rampant about the closure of regional broadcasting stations. The Troika also wants the operating costs for NET, ERT’s second television network, to be largely decreased. According to estimates, the dismissal of 600 to 700 ERT employees is being readied. Some employees will be given the chance of voluntary departure taking into consideration that around 700 ERT employees will retire by 2015. There are 2,780 people currently working for ERT, in the five public television stations (ET1, NET, ET3, ERT World and ERT HD). ERT also includes 29 radio stations, websites and weekly magazine, as well as the National Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestra of Contemporary Music.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: MPS Executives to Stand Trial in September

Former Siena bank chairman, indicted in derivatives scandal

(ANSA) — Rome, June 11 — An Italian judge on Tuesday set September 26 as the trial date for Giuseppe Mussari, the former chairman of Monte dei Paschi di Siena (MPS), and two others on obstruction charges in connection with a huge financial scandal at Italy’s third-biggest bank.

Mussari, former MPS director-general Antonio Vigni, and former finance chief Gianluca Baldassarri were all ordered to stand trial on charges of obstructing bank supervisors.

Those charges are in connection with the alleged concealment of a money-losing contract between MPS and Japanese investment bank Nomura.

Investigations began early this year after it emerged that a previously undisclosed series of derivative and structured-finance deals produced losses of around 720 million euros for MPS, the world’s oldest bank. Senior officials from MPS are facing penalties totalling as much as five million euros from the Bank of Italy for alleged fraud and corruption.

Prosecutors say Nomura was involved in one of a series of suspect derivative and structured-finance deals involving MPS.

The Japanese bank denies wrongdoing.

Mussari, Vigni and Baldassarri are also being probed for crimes including usury, aggravated fraud, and issuing false statements.

Mussari last year resigned from MPS and stepped down from his subsequent post as chairman of the banking association ABI after the scandal exploded in January. Baldassarri is under house arrest.

There are also suspicions senior MPS managers were involved in alleged corruption in the nine-billion-euro acquisition of rival bank Antonveneta, at least two billion above its reputed market value, in 2008.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Facing Eviction, Man Jumps to His Death From Upper Window

Mayor says suicide part of a ‘social emergency’

(ANSA) — Cairo Montenotte, June 11 — An unemployed man facing eviction from his home killed himself Tuesday by jumping from a window in northern Italy.

Authorities said the man, who was 32, was living in Cairo Montenotte with his brother, who receives a disability pension, and his mother.

The man jumped from the third-floor window and crashed into the building’s yard. Attempts to resuscitate him failed.

The town mayor called his death “a tragedy” and part of a “social emergency” in Italy where numerous suicides have been reportedly connected with the long-running and deep economic recession.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Kyle Bass: “This Ends in War; The Government’s Never Going to Tell You That It’s Going to Happen.”

In a follow up presentation to the AmeriCatalyst Group, Hayman Capital fund manager Kyle Bass shares thoughts on a number of key issues facing the world over the next few years. Among those that stood out, was the inevitability of a major war, escalation of food riots, and why the government’s job is to maintain confidence over truth.

Excerpts are show here below: (click on time marker to hear excerpt)

5:00 — “This Ends In War”

“We sit today at the world’s largest peacetime accumulation of debt in world history…you know how this ends right? This ends through war… I don’t know who’s going to fight who, but I’m fairly certain in the next few years you will see wars erupt, and not just small ones…”

19:00 — “More Social Unrest”

“You’re going to see more social unrest. You saw HUGE riots in Greece, and you’re seeing HUGE riots in other parts of the world over food (and lack of food) and those are actually derivatives of the financial problems that we’re seeing. We’re exporting inflation to some other nations. Going forward it’s going to be a problem.”

24:00 — “They’re Not Going To Tell You”

“They’re not going to tell you [that a collapse is coming]. You’re going to have to see it for yourself. [During the Tequila crisis], the Mexican government affirmed they would not default, that they would not devalue, almost daily. The day after they said “we wont devalue,” they devalued by 60%. The government’s never going to tell you that it’s going to happen.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Privatizations: No Interest: Greece Starts DEPA Bid Anew

Russia’s gas giant Gazprom withdrew from the tender

(ANSAmed) ATHENS, JUNE 11 — After failing to get a single bidder for its natural gas company DEPA as part of a lagging privatization effort, Greece is going to relaunch the tender process again in hopes someone will have some interest, Deputy Energy Minister Asimakis Papageorgiou said yesterday ad GreekReporter writes. That came after the privatization effort was undercut by the failure to get a bid for DEPA and only one for the gas grid operator, DESFA, that from Azerbaijian’s state oil and gas company SOCAR. “DEPA’s privatization will be reviewed and relaunched very soon,” Papaeorgiou told reporters, but added that it is too early to say whether this will finish in 2013. Russia’s state gas giant Gazprom, widely seen as the front runner, withdrew from the tender for DEPA. He said that there was no official briefing from Russia, but according to Russian officials they raised concerns over strict rules from Europe’s competition authority. “There is no issue between the relationships of the two countries,” he added. Gazprom’s Chief Executive Officer Alexei Miller had visited Athens three times in recent weeks for talks on Depa. The deadline for bids was June 10 but the lack of interest stunned Greek officials who were hoping to propel the privatization program while under pressure from international lenders to speed it up. Greece said that SOCAR’s bid was helpful. “This raises the possibilities for the creation of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline,” the deputy energy minister said. TAP is a proposed pipeline that would bring gas from Azerbaijan to Europe, part of a European effort to diversify the continent’s energy supplies and reduce its current over reliance on Russia and would bring some 1.5 billion euros to Greece. The TAP project aims to transport gas from the Caspian region via Greece and Albania and across the Adriatic Sea to southern Italy and further into Western Europe. The project, if successful, will open a new so-called Southern Gas Corridor to Europe and establish a new market outlet for natural gas from the Caspian. DESFA and DEPA were seen as crown jewels of Greece’s lagging privatization program which had gotten a boost last month with the sale of a 33% stake in the gambling monopoly OPAP.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Spain: ‘Catalonia’s Welfare State Depends on Deficit Relief’

Spain’s heavily indebted region of Catalonia, which is facing a resurgent separatist movement, demanded on Tuesday that the central government lift its budget deficit target for this year to protect social services.

Madrid wants the country’s 17 regions, which are responsible for providing healthcare and education services, to lower their budget deficit to 1.2 percent of gross domestic product this year from an average of 1.7 percent last year.

The reduction is crucial to Spain’s campaign to lower the nation’s overall public deficit and meet targets agreed with Brussels.

But Catalonia has yet to present a 2013 budget and Catalan president Artur Mas said Tuesday his government would not be able to table one unless Madrid raises the deficit limit.

“If we prepare a budget based on the figure which Madrid has given us, it would mean the end of the welfare state in Catalonia,” he said.

Catalonia, which accounts for one-fifth of Spain’s output, has already slashed its budget deficit from 4.57 percent in 2010 to 1.96 percent.

Anger at slashed budgets for hospitals, schools and social welfare has revived the independence movement in the region, which has its own distinct language and culture and accounts for about one-fifth of Spain’s output.

Mas, of the nationalist Convergence and Union alliance, warned that Catalonia “is reaching the limit of its efforts when it comes to austerity.”

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

322 IRS Visits to White House

Left claims it was to discuss Obamacare

The explosion of intelligence-gathering scandals is giving the left time to get its story straight, at least, on the IRS scandal.

The IRS’ targeting of conservative groups has fallen out of public view, at least momentarily, as the NSA and PRISM data-collection scandals have burst onto the scene.

But, behind the scenes, the left is catching its breath and regrouping, having come up with what it says is an explanation for at least 157 visits to the White House by former IRS Director Douglas Shulman between 2010 and 2012.

By comparison, Shulman’s predecessor Mark Everson visited the White House only one time in four years during the George W. Bush administration, according to the Daily Caller.

The much greater number of visits by Shulman made many people skeptical of his claim that he never discussed the targeting of conservatives with anyone at the White House.

Now, the Atlantic has pushed the narrative that it was really only 11 visits, not 157.

The liberal magazine said White House logs show Shulman signed in only 11 times.

“According to the White House records, Shulman signed in twice in 2009, five times in 2010, twice in 2011 and twice in 2012,” the Atlantic reported.

But that’s no proof Shulman visited the White House only 11 times, or even fewer than 157 times. As the Atlantic also acknowledged, the number of times he signed in “does not mean that he did not go to other meetings, only that the White House records do not show he went to the 157 meetings he was granted Secret Service clearance to attend.”

That’s because Cabinet members and other important visitors often don’t sign in when they visit the White House.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Benghazi, IRS, AP Scandal, Are We Being Played?

This administration has repeatedly shown their fondness for the art of distraction. Lets face it magicians are envious of this administrations mental slight of hand. When it comes to the use of distraction, aptitude combined with media cooperation, has proven remarkably effective. When there isn’t a natural disaster or tragedy handy, they will produce one of some kind, if nothing else a security leak is always handy. After you have seen a magic act repeatedly, you will try to ignore the distraction and instead utilize it to point towards the truth.

Not to downplay the IRS and AP scandal but I think the administration is very happy that it is taking some of the attention away from Benghazi. Most likely because the IRS and AP situations where totally under the administrations control, they may have isolated themselves sufficiently to be shielded. Benghazi on the other hand was far from controlled. We see them trying very hard to point us anywhere but Benghazi. Does the attack at Benghazi have the potential to reveal something that they fear?

Important as “who knew what when” regarding the change in talking points, I think there are even more important unanswered questions. Why was Ambassador Stevens in Benghazi? Why were the first 67 hours after the attack, missing from the emails released by the White House? The attack began at 9:42 p.m. that is 3:42 p.m. EST, at 11:10 p.m. (5:10 p.m. EST) the drone arrived. Where is the drone footage? Where are the survivors’? Why are all the survivors’ identities kept secret? There have been reports of as many as 34 survivors were evacuated requiring two planes…

Why is it we have a Middle East policy, that judging by the past results, the main beneficiary is always the Muslim Brotherhood?

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Beyond the Military-Industrial Complex

Greetings from sunny K Street, the Seat of Government here in the Economy of the United States of America. I see that an American who calls herself Dymphna, and who writes for a blog with the dangerously un-American title of “Gates of Vienna,” has commented on my post of yesterday (We had to kill this republic to save it …).

Clearly, Dymphna has neglected to enroll in a reeducation camp because she highlighted comments of a dangerous anarchist named Dwight Eisenhower. Mr Eisenhower somehow became a U.S. President when this country was a republic. As Dymphna pointed out, as he was leaving office he warned about what he termed America’s “military-industrial complex”…


If I understand her correctly Dymphna is implying that Americans are excessively anxious. I have a few points to make about such a dangerous observation:

First of all, according to data published in November 2011, only 1 in 5 Americans are taking anti-psychotic prescription medications including anti-anxiety medications. So while I don’t have the precise breakdown, the data indicate we are a long way from market saturation in anti-anxiety medications. To in any way imply that American physicians, health insurance carriers and the pharmaceutical industry are not doing their part to support the U.S. economy is — well, this is just why I am proposing legislation to make enrollment in reeducation camps mandatory.

Secondly, the military-industrial “complex” or nexus is a quaint artifact of the mid-20th Century. Eisenhower was talking about the industry in military hardware — ships, bomber jets, and stuff. Today, if you can think it, we can industrialize it, and then we can sell it to the military.

This is how we fought the second phase of the Afghan War: Death by Power Point, Death by NGO, etc. Granted, we didn’t win the war with this approach. But we won the only war that counts, which is beating out other nations in market share of ideas that can be weaponized then eventually sold for $59.99 at Walmart, or say, marketed to fools in “Arab Spring” countries who don’t understand that concepts such as democracy and human rights can be weaponized and marketed to dissidents and NGOs. Hell, we’ve even weaponized protests against genocide.

Of course the tendency for human nature to weaponize everything it can wrap its mind around is not unique to Americans. And when you consider the extent to which religion has been weaponized throughout history, the tendency is probably as old as human conflicts. America’s contribution to human progress in this area has been to apply modern business and economic principles to one of human nature’s blips.

Thirdly, we in the Government of the Economy of the United States exist to keep Americans safe and secure. So for Dymphna to imply that Americans are unusually worried about danger is, well, subversive to Government and a danger to the American economy.

           — Hat tip: Pundita [Return to headlines]

Congressman Ted Poe: ‘The Government Spooks Are Drunk on Power’

During a House session Tuesday, Congressman Ted Poe, R-Texas, voiced his disapproval with the numerous surveillance scandals impacting the nation.

Noting the Justice Department’s illegal tapping of the Associated Press’s and Fox journalist James Rosen’s phones, the NSA’s seizing of Verizon customers’ phone records and news of the NSA’s PRISM surveillance grid, Rep. Poe quotes Obama’s own words from when he campaigned for office to highlight how his administration never stopped spying on citizens.

“Mr. Speaker, the American people have lost trust in this government, ya think?” stated Poe. “The government spooks are drunk on power and it’s time for Congress to intervene to prevent the invasion of privacy by government against the citizens.”

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Coulter: If the GOP is This Stupid, It Deserves to Die

Democrats terrify Hispanics into thinking they’ll be lynched if they vote for Republicans, and then turn around and taunt Republicans for not winning a majority of the Hispanic vote.

This line of attack has real resonance with our stupidest Republicans. (Proposed Republican primary targets: Sens. Kelly Ayotte, Jeff Flake, Lindsey Graham and Marco Rubio.) Which explains why Republicans are devoting all their energy to slightly increasing their share of the Hispanic vote while alienating everyone else in America.

It must be fun for liberals to manipulate Republicans into focusing on hopeless causes. Why don’t Democrats waste their time trying to win the votes of gun owners?

As journalist Steve Sailer recently pointed out, the Hispanic vote terrifying Republicans isn’t that big. It actually declined in 2012. The Census Bureau finally released the real voter turnout numbers from the last election, and the Hispanic vote came in at only 8.4 percent of the electorate — not the 10 percent claimed by the pro-amnesty crowd.

The sleeping giant of the last election wasn’t Hispanics; it was elderly black women, terrified of media claims that Republicans were trying to suppress the black vote and determined to keep the first African-American president in the White House.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Developing Now: Life in Obama’s America


This is life in Obama’s America— Tom Francois receives a visit from the Secret Service who asked to have a look around. The Secret Service ask to see his two legally-owned guns which they found during a background check on him and requested that he give them permission to check his medical records. Though Mr. Francois may speak out in ways I would not, a quick review of his Twitter feed doesn’t show anything threatening:

“The Secret Service had a thick FBI file- filled with screenshots of hundreds of posts. Said Tom, “I flat out told them ‘I have NEVER threatened Obama’s life! Yes, I despise him as you can plainly see, but I have that right!’ They actually ADMITTED and agreed with me that I hadn’t threatened Obama.”

They had run a background check and discovered that Tom legally owned two guns- and they asked to see them. Tom showed them his firearms. They asked, “Are they loaded?” Tom replied in the affirmative. “What good are guns if they aren’t loaded?”

So why harass Tom? “The Secret Service officers claimed that “they were concerned that since I have a large Twitter following, and the things I said could be acted upon by some nut case out there! What the hell? They turned my life upside down for THAT?”

Tom didn’t refuse the search because they just would have gone and gotten a warrant. “They would have proceeded to tear my house apart. No thanks. I have nothing to hide. They left empty-handed and my house is still intact.”

When they left Tom’s house, one Secret Service Agent ‘advised’- “Keep in mind, if you step over the line, we’ll come back for your guns.”


We are witnessing an unmistakable pattern from Obama and those under his command of establishing different rules for different groups of Americans. I’m not just referring to his opportunistic championing of the “poor” and his vendetta against the “wealthy” or his relentless vilification of “fat cat banks,” big corporations, private jet owners, and the insurance, oil, coal, natural gas and nuclear power industries. It goes well beyond that.

As Obama blames certain groups of people for America’s problems, it follows that he would try to diminish their power and, in some cases, punish them for their past actions and present status.

If you dispute that, you must explain away his 20-year membership in a church driven by race-based get-even-ism; his reflexive condemnation of the Cambridge Police Department for arresting a friend of his, professor Henry Gates, and his leaping to the grossly premature conclusion that the arrest was race-based; his penchant for projection — prejudging people based on his distorted perception that they, as opposed to him, are uncomfortable with “people who don’t look like them”; and his observation to supporters at a campaign rally inside a public high school during the 2012 presidential campaign that “voting is the best revenge.” And that is just a sampling.

You’ll also have to defend Obama’s discriminatory actions and policies.

Consider his tenacious alignment with unions, forever overlooking their misconduct and granting them special privileges and protection.

He gave preferential treatment to unsecured union creditors in the Chrysler and General Motors restructuring debacles, to the detriment of secured creditors. His administration baselessly blocked Boeing from opening up a new plant with 1,000 new jobs in Charleston, S.C., when South Carolina was suffering from a 9.8 percent unemployment rate. He disproportionately allocated Obamacare waivers to labor union concerns.

How about the administration’s lopsided allocation of stimulus funds to its political supporters? Its discriminatory retention of GM dealerships for minorities and women? The Justice Department’s dismissal of an already-won lawsuit against New Black Panther Party members for voter intimidation — not because it lacked evidence, as it preposterously claimed, but because it adhered to an unwritten policy against pursuing voter intimidation actions when the alleged perpetrators were minorities and the victims were white?

Consider the Homeland Security Department, under Obama’s watch, designating “right-wing extremist groups” as potential domestic threats.

Ponder the administration’s practice of punishing, after having promised to reward, whistleblowers, from Gerald Walpin to Fast and Furious to the most recent flurry of scandals.


“After we win this election, it’s our turn. Payback time. Every person not with us is against us and they better be ready because we don’t forget. The ones who helped us will be rewarded, the ones who opposed us will get what they deserve.” — Valerie Jarrett

“There is going to be hell to pay. Congress won’t be a problem for us this time. No election to worry about after this is over and we have two judges ready to go.” — Valerie Jarrett

           — Hat tip: LS [Return to headlines]

DHS Admits Boston Training Drill Involving Backpack Explosives Planned Months Before Marathon

According to the DHS documents acquired by the Boston Globe, the agents were planning on conducting training exercises centered around a fictitious terrorist group called ‘Free America Citizens’, a group that would plant backpacks full of explosives around Boston that the detectives would be forced to track down. Ultimately, of course, this ended up happening at the Boston Marathon itself with precise accuracy. The Globe report reads that “the city was hit with a real terrorist attack executed in a frighteningly similar fashion.”

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

DHS Wants Equipment for “Riot Control Situations”

Protective gear for FPS guards to protect government buildings

The Department of Homeland Security is purchasing hundreds of items of protective gear for its fleet of Federal Protective Service officers in order to prepare for “riot control situations,” increasing concerns that the federal agency is readying for domestic unrest.

A June 10 solicitation posted on the FedBizOpps website seeks to outfit officers working for the DHS’ Federal Protective Service, which is primarily used to guard government buildings but has also been used to spy on protesters.

As we reported last month, FPS officers were used to guard an IRS building in St. Louis during a Tea Party protest against the federal agency’s discrimination targeting conservative groups.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

DHS-Funded Exercise Portrays “Free America Citizens” As Terrorist Cell

Branding of Tea Party as violent extremists accelerates

A Homeland Security-funded training exercise in Boston dubbed “Operation Urban Shield” that was delayed due to April’s marathon bombing revolved around a terrorist cell dubbed “Free America Citizens,” another indication of how the DHS is characterizing liberty-loving Americans as domestic extremists.

“Months of painstaking planning had gone into the exercise, dubbed “Operation Urban Shield,” meant to train dozens of detectives in the Greater Boston area to work together to thwart a terrorist threat. The hypothetical terrorist group was even given a name: Free America Citizens, a home-grown cadre of militiamen whose logo would be a metal skull wearing an Uncle Sam hat and a furious expression,” reports the Boston Globe.

The drill, which was funded with the aid of a $200,000 Department of Homeland Security grant and was set to involve DHS officials along with other federal authorities, centered on the scenario of domestic terrorists leaving explosive-filled backpacks at locations around the city. The exercise was due to take place this weekend but was postponed in response to the Boston bombings and is now expected to go ahead early next year.

The exercise, many details of which remain confidential, has been crafted to test the investigative skills of detectives involved who will be tasked with finding out the motivation behind the “Free America” terrorists.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Government Keeps List of 8 Million Names Considered Threats

Michael Snyder has provided details on Main Core, a list of some 8 million or more names compiled by the CIA and U.S. intelligence. The individuals on the Main Core list, he writes, will be rounded up after the Constitution is suspended and and martial law imposed.

Main Core is not a secret. Snyder points to a Wikipedia entry describing the database:

Main Core is the code name of a database maintained since the 1980s by the federal government of the United States. Main Core contains personal and financial data of millions of U.S. citizens believed to be threats to national security. The data, which comes from the NSA, FBI, CIA, and other sources, is collected and stored without warrants or court orders. The database’s name derives from the fact that it contains “copies of the ‘main core’ or essence of each item of intelligence information on Americans produced by the FBI and the other agencies of the U.S. intelligence community.”

Senator Feinstein, Rep. Mike Rogers and the apologists for high-tech tyranny insist the NSA’s Prism and and Boundless Informant are about protecting us from terrorists. If you are a student of history, however, you will realize this is nonsense. If you know anything about Continuity of Government measures implemented following September 11, 2001 and earlier programs like Rex 84 and Operation Garden Plot, you already have a sneaking suspicion the NSA’s massive surveillance operation has nothing to do with al-Qaeda. It’s about collecting data on American citizens, specifically the eight or so million compiled in the Main Core database.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

IRS Exempts Terror Front Group Over Tea Party

Reinstated despite years of delinquent filings

At the same time the Internal Revenue Service delayed or denied requests for tax-exempt status from hundreds of conservative non-profit groups, it was quietly restoring the tax-exempt status of an Islamist front group accused of collaborating with terrorists.

Last year, the politicized agency reinstated the Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations’ tax-exempt status despite years of delinquent tax filings. CAIR officials had met with officials inside the White House before the decision was made.

Though Democrat-connected CAIR did not officially endorse Obama, many of its staffers helped turn out the Muslim vote for his re-election. CAIR boasted that its own polling showed more than 85 percent of Muslim-Americans voted for Obama.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Maryland Sheriff Opposes State’s Gun Regulations

Garrett County Sheriff Robert Corley provided a resolution he claims protects citizens’ Second Amendment rights in regard to the Maryland Firearms Safety Act of 2013 for the county commissioners’ support during the commission meeting on Tuesday.

Corley proclaimed his opposition to the MFSA and asked for support in allowing himself and deputies to use sound discretionary enforcement of the MFSA against any citizen unless they are engaged in commission of a crime of violence, a violent act, have been convicted of a prior felony, are adjudicated with a dangerous mental illness or under any other related compelling exigent circumstances.

“I’m asking you to join me in my commitment to the law-abiding citizens of Garrett County because such enforcement will greatly reduce the likelihood of criminalizing law-abiding citizens,” said Corley.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

NSA Surveillance: Anger Mounts in Congress at ‘Spying on Americans’

Anger was mounting in Congress on Tuesday night as politicians, briefed for the first time after revelations about the government’s surveillance dragnet, vowed to rein in a system that one said amounted to “spying on Americans”.

Intelligence chiefs and FBI officials had hoped that the closed-door briefing with a full meeting of the House of Representatives would help reassure members about the widespread collection of US phone records revealed by the Guardian.

But senior figures from both parties emerged from the meeting alarmed at the extent of a surveillance program that many claimed never to have heard of until whistleblower Edward Snowden leaked a series of top-secret documents.

The congressional fury came at the end of a day of fast-moving developments.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Obama Calls Constitution ‘Charter of Negative Liberties’

Long before he was president, Barack Obama was already plotting to overturn the Constitution of the United States. In a chilling 2001 public radio interview, Obama said the Constitution was a “charter of negative liberties,” full of constraints imposed upon us by our Founding Fathers…

“The Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth, and of more basic issues such as political and economic justice in society… [The Supreme Court] didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution, at least as it’s been interpreted, and the Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. [It] says what the states can’t do to you. [It] says what the federal government can’t do to you, but [it] doesn’t say what the federal government or state government must do on your behalf.”

At the time, Obama was referring to the changes brought about by the civil rights movement. Obviously, though, over the years his opinion remains unchanged and he still has no respect for the Constitution — or the citizens — of the United States.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Obama Identity Fraud: The Net Closes In

Exclusive: Lord Monckton predicts accountability on ‘birth certificate’ will come soon

Mike Zullo, the volunteer chief investigator for Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Ariz., is not letting go. Like a bulldog, he continues to investigate the outrageously bogus “birth certificate” Mr. Obama personally endorsed as his own when it was posted at the White House website a year before the last presidential election.

Recently, Zullo gave a briefing to the Constitutional Sheriffs’ and Peace Officers’ Association setting out just some of the evidence that the document must be a forgery.

One of the many bombshells he dropped was the news that a certified document examiner with 20 years’ experience had closely examined the “birth certificate” and had concluded that it was the most obvious forgery he had seen in those 20 years.

The examiner was not making a party political point, for he is a registered Democrat.

Mike Zullo’s investigation has now continued for almost two years. He has amassed many thousands of pages of evidence. His draft investigation report is already more than 300 pages long, and he reckons it will be 700 pages before it is complete.

There is some explosive evidence that he has not yet disclosed, because it concerns third parties who may be connected with the forgery.

His determination is commendable. But there is one question the Obots raise that now needs an answer. If it is so very plain that the “birth certificate” is forged, why has Sheriff Arpaio been unable to put the matter before any court? Why is Obama still in the White House and not in the jailhouse?

Part of the answer lies in the terrified reluctance even of Fox News to cover the story properly. Fox calls itself “fair, balanced, and unafraid.” But it is afraid. Very afraid.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Obama Quietly Raises ‘Carbon Price’ As Costs to Climate Increase

Buried in a little-noticed rule on microwave ovens is a change in the U.S. government’s accounting for carbon emissions that could have wide-ranging implications for everything from power plants to the Keystone XL pipeline.

The increase of the so-called social cost of carbon, to $38 a metric ton in 2015 from $23.80, adjusts the calculation the government uses to weigh costs and benefits of proposed regulations. The figure is meant to approximate losses from global warming such as flood damage and diminished crops.

With the change, government actions that lead to cuts in emissions — anything from new mileage standards to clean-energy loans — will appear more valuable in its cost-benefit analyses. On the flip side, approvals that could lead to more carbon pollution, such as TransCanada Corp. (TRP)’s Keystone pipeline or coal-mining by companies such as Peabody Energy Corp. (BTU) on public lands, may be viewed as more costly.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Rep. Steve Stockman Says Obama Uses NSA on Tea Party, Protects Terrorists

“Those who surrender freedom for security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.”

— Benjamin Franklin

In response to media concerns over reports that the NSA has been spying on communications between millions of law-abiding American citizens, President Obama said, “You can’t have 100-percent security and also have 100-percent privacy and zero inconvenience. We’re going to have to make some choices as a society.” But is the promise of security really worth sacrificing our freedoms?

During an appearance on the Alex Jones show, Rep. Steve Stockman (R-Texas) said the NSA (National Security Agency) spying scandal was par for the course. “It follows with Obama’s intent to focus on the citizens as the criminal and the terrorists are not to be investigated. The Tea Party and average citizens have become the target. It’s alarming that we do live in an Orwellian world where good is bad and bad is good, and it’s now targeting American citizens over the terrorists.”

Stockman also said he didn’t understand why more Americans weren’t outraged. “What I don’t understand is, people outside of your listeners, you interview them or talk to them, it’s puzzling to me at what degree they’re willing to give up their individual freedoms for the perception of security, and we both know that when you give up your individual liberties you soon have neither.”

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Ron Paul: Why Are Republicans Defending Obama Over NSA Spying?

RINO’s line up to support big government

During an appearance on MSNBC’s Daily Rundown, former Congressman Ron Paul questioned why Republicans are coming to the defense of big government and the Obama administration by calling for NSA whistleblower Ed Snowden to be arrested.

Challenging the demonization of Snowden by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle who have accused the whistleblower of committing treason, Paul lambasted Republicans such as John Boehner for siding with Obama.

“The political foolishness of Republicans running to rescue Obama — the American people are sick and tired of all this snooping, prying and surveillance, so the Republicans run to the rescue of Obama and say ‘we passed those laws, they’re good laws, we want to preserve those laws’ — so it doesn’t even make political sense,” said Paul.

In the aftermath of the scandal, numerous Republicans have called for Snowden to be arrested rather than defending him as a patriot who gave up his life to warn that Constitutional rights are being eviscerated by the National Security Agency…

Ron Paul acknowledged that what Snowden did was technically illegal, but warned that the far bigger threat came from big government. “It is probably illegal, there are laws against this, but what about people who are breaking the law, violating the Constitution…which one has the higher order — the Constitution, the written law, or the authority of the executive branch who controls the enforcement of laws?“ asked Paul, adding that the bigger the government grew, the greater the threat.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

School Upholds Suspension of Student Who Shaped Pop-Tart Gun

Anne Arundel County Public Schools have denied a request to remove a suspension from the record of Josh Welch, a Park Elementary School student suspended in March for biting his breakfast pastry into the shape of a gun.

Josh’s lawyer Rob Ficker said Tuesday he was disappointed with the decision made by county schools Superintendent Dr. Kevin Maxwell. He now has 30 days to file an appeal to the county Board of Education.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

School Choice is America’s Trojan Horse

Public and private school choice proposals, being promoted by the Obama Administration, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), and the neoconservative Trotskyite/corporate conglomerate, if implemented, will spell the end of traditional education in the United States. Tax-supported school choice proposals affecting public, private, religious, and home school education are the vehicle to change not only the right of Americans to choose what kind of education they wish for their children, but may also result in changing our representative form of government to an “unelected council form of government” due to one form of school choice, charter schools, run by “unelected councils.

Under the proposed school choice proposals, including Parent Trigger laws, education is being surreptitiously converted from academics to socialist work force training, necessary for the United States imminent merging into a global, collectivized economy…

Professor Eugene Boyce, University of Georgia, said in regard to the above communist education system: “They (communists) do not educate for jobs that don’t exist.” No matter what your child wants to be/do in the future (welder or ballet dancer) his freedom to pursue his dreams will be limited by whether he is included in the school/business partnership’s “quota” for training. Example: If he wants to be a welder at the shipbuilding company in your town, he will only be able to get training if he is fortunate enough to be included in the training quota. If the company only needs ten welders, and your son/daughter is No. 11 on the list, he/she will NOT receive training. Ask yourself what this socialist system will do to the spirit of entrepreneurship for which America is so well known?

[Comment: Highly recommended reading.]

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

The Fuse Has Been Lit: Seven Critical Points on Uncle Sam’s Spying Program

The sordid revelations from the Obama administration are coming at a pace that can only be described as, well, fast and furious. So let’s lay down some markers here, as a sort of road map for the months and years ahead:

First, if the PRISM program and all the rest of the government’s surveillance programs were so good and necessary, then why didn’t the feds catch the Tsarnaev brothers, who earlier this year blew up the Boston Marathon? Or Major Hassan, the 2009 Fort Hood mass-murderer? Or the “underwear bomber,” also from 2009, who nearly succeeded in blowing up the passenger jet flying into Detroit?

Second, if and when everything is revealed about PRISM and all the rest, it’s likely that we will learn of important and inculpating connections between the National Security Agency (NSA), on the one hand, and many civilian agencies, on the other.

I am not just referring to Eric Holder’s Justice Department; I am also referring to the gleefully gushing leakers and win-at-any-cost politicos in the White House. And oh yes, let’s not forget the Obama administration’s partisan allies at the IRS, as well as the Obamacare overseers at the Department of Health and Human Services.


Third, we now know that Silicon Valley, and the telecommunications industry, are the key to the Obama strategy for total information awareness. In fact, the internet companies, and the phone companies, were the spearpoint for PRISM. No, wait, that’s not the right image. Let’s try this: These communications companies put peepholes into all of our private lives, through which Uncle Sam could sneak a peek. Every e-mail, every phone call, every text-message—the government knows about them all.

It’s now evident that all these wonderful digital services—many of them, such as Google’s Gmail, given away for free—were, in fact, a kind of Trojan Horse. That is, on the outside, it all seemed like a good deal—but then the real truth comes tumbling out, and it’s too late. Some might recall the rueful lesson of the Trojan War: “Beware of Greeks bearing gifts.” The rueful lesson of our own time: “Beware of geeks bearing gifts.”

Yes, Big Brother walks among us now, peeking and snooping into everything. And we, innocently and unwittingly, invited Big Brother into our midst…


…In fact, those Americans whom Rasmussen categorizes as the “political class”—that is, those connected to DC and governance—support PRISM by a 71 percent to 18 percent ratio. Meanwhile, the rest of the country opposes PRISM by a more than three-to-one ratio, 69 percent to 21 percent. Now let’s think about the enormous chasm here: The political class supports the program by a 53-point margin, while everyone else opposes it by a 48-point margin. If you add up those two margins, 53 and 48, you get 101. That’s a vivid indicator of the gap between the government and the governed…


NOTE: Read numbers four through seven at the URL above.

           — Hat tip: Andrea Shea King [Return to headlines]

The NSA Data Mining Matters

It’s starting to seem that with every news cycle, a new Obama scandal is unearthed and brought to the light of day. Any one of the many scandals that have been revealed would be disturbing to anybody with any sense of fair play or desire for good government.

All of them together are making it apparent to the American people that our government is no longer merely corrupt, unethical, and of questionable constitutionality, but has crossed the line into blatant lawlessness, a frank disregard for the rule of law and open contempt for our organic and foundational law.

But it’s not just the Obama administration that we’re talking about here. Much of this current scandal is also applicable to, and indeed finds its root within, the Bush administration as well. What’s ironic is that this lawlessness has been made possible, in part, by all these “law and order conservatives” out there. You know the type I’m talking about: the people who think that talking about constitutional rights is a codeword for “supporting terrorism;” the folks who automatically trust that everything the government does is right, and who think that there could never, ever possibly be a conspiracy against the liberties of the American people. In short, the Right’s own version of the “low information voter,” the type of “conservative” that the Founding Fathers warned us about as a threat to our liberties. Thanks to them, our government has been enabled to go beyond its legitimate, constitutionally granted powers and into the realm of the panopticon state, all for the supposed purpose of “keeping us safe.”

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

The Rest of the World is Absolutely Disgusted With Our Big Brother Spying Methods

The rest of the world has found out that the U.S. government has been listening to their phone calls and watching what they do on the Internet and they do not like it one bit. Outrage has been pouring in from all over the planet, and one member of the European Parliament is even comparing the NSA to the Stasi. But instead of stepping back and reevaluating our Big Brother spying methods now that they have been revealed, Barack Obama and other leading members of Congress are defiantly declaring that there is nothing wrong with these methods and that no changes will be made. The U.S. government is going to continue to invade the privacy of the citizens of the rest of the world as much as it possibly can, and our leaders don’t seem to really care what the international response is. And make no mistake — the goal of the U.S. intelligence community is to literally know everything about everyone.

The chief technology officer of the CIA, Gus Hunt, made the following shocking admission back in March: “We fundamentally try to collect everything and hang onto it forever.” He followed that statement up with this gem: “It is really very nearly within our grasp to be able to compute on all human-generated information.” In other words, they want it all, and they nearly have the capacity to gather it all already. So where does this end? Will the U.S. intelligence community ever be happy until they have every piece of data on every single person on the entire planet? Do we really want a government that collects “everything” and hangs on to it “forever”?

Thanks to Edward Snowden, the rest of the globe is starting to understand the extent to which the U.S. government has been spying on them. Needless to say, a lot of people are extremely upset about this.

In Germany (a country that knows a thing or two about Big Brother tactics), some prominent politicians are publicly denouncing the surveillance that the U.S. government has been doing on their citizens. In fact, one German politician has accused the U.S. of employing”American-style Stasi methods”…

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Troops ‘Targeted by NSA for Anti-Obama Views’

Attorney claims visits from FBI, Secret Service about Web postings

The NSA is systematically monitoring the Internet posts and telephone conversations of U.S. military returning from Afghanistan, according to a civil-liberties attorney.

“The FBI and the Secret Service are showing up to request an interview to question specific Internet posts the veteran has placed on websites such as Facebook,” explained attorney John Whitehead, founder of the Rutherford Institute.

Whitehead said the agencies are looking for “anti-Obama views that can be interpreted to reflect psychological problems of sufficient seriousness to disqualify the veteran from ever owning a firearm.”

Rutherford told WND credible sources within the National Security Agency have told him the NSA is downloading 1 trillion communications on the Internet per month, including posts to various websites, emails, instant message communications and texting messages.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

What is the Government’s Agenda?

It has been public information for a decade that the US government secretly, illegally, and unconstitutionally spies on its citizens. Congress and the federal courts have done nothing about this extreme violation of the US Constitution and statutory law, and the insouciant US public seems unperturbed…

There is no longer any doubt whatsoever that the US government is lawless, that it regards the US Constitution as a scrap of paper, that it does not believe Americans have any rights other than those that the government tolerates at any point in time, and that the government has no fear of being held accountable by the weak and castrated US Congress, the sycophantic federal courts, a controlled media, and an insouciant public.

Binney and Snowden have described in precisely accurate detail the extreme danger from the government’s surveillance of the population. No one is exempt, not the Director of the CIA, US Army Generals, Senators and Representatives, not even the president himself.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Why the Surveillance State Must be Erased

1984 was not supposed to be an instruction manual

In America today there is a great rushing storm, a swirling hurricane of clashing opinions and ideologies that defy coherent organization and classification. This social tempest has been triggered by certain revelations among the general public on issues which we in the Liberty Movement have long been aware. The fact that our government is bought and paid for by international corporate interests, the fact that our government has positioned itself to spy on ALL Americans without warrant and without probable cause, the fact that our government is instituting policy initiatives that target common citizens as enemy combatants, the fact that every one of our Constitutional rights is being deliberately torn away; these things are not news to us, but to many once ignorant people, they are a shock to the system.

Open corruption on the part of a criminal establishment has a funny way of politicizing everyone, even those people who go out of their way to avoid the bigger picture. In the end, no man or woman gets a pass. Whether you like it or not, one day soon, you will have to choose a side; freedom or tyranny. There is no middle ground. There is no Switzerland.

With all the rationalizations and counter-rationalizations flying around concerning the current avalanche of admissions and data leaks, it is easy to lose track of the root of the overall conflict. It’s as if we have been dropped into the heart of an Amazonian swamp, our feet encased in a thick sludge of social inaction as a dark cloud of mindless mosquito-people buzz about us, pecking hungrily at our veins with their warped and uneducated world views. The deafening chorus distracts us from what is truly important.

Here is the reality of our situation:

1) Both the Bush Administration and the Obama Administration supported FISA domestic surveillance legislation. FISA is the legal tool which the federal government now uses to justify the monitoring of journalists and recently exposed mass surveillance programs such as PRISM. Politicians from both the Republican and the Democratic parties have defended the use of FISA and PRISM. Both parties support the destruction of your 4th Amendment rights.

2) The Obama Administration openly admits to the monitoring of journalist’s phone and email records in an attempt to thwart whistleblowers that might actually bring the truth of what the government is doing into the light of day. Obama of course defends this position by claiming that “national security” is at stake.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

You Can’t Outleft the Left

The liberal Republican prescription is still to Outleft the left

The dominant struggle of the 20th Century was the attempt to reconcile the growth of industrial economies with the social welfare demands of the left. The various attempts to “Steal the Thunder” of the left by adopting its social programs led to horrors such as Nazism on the one hand and the growth of the welfare state on the other.

Communism was finally defeated by adopting its program. The national battle against a Russian Communist empire was won while the domestic struggle against the left was lost.

The welfare state created a fifth column of bureaucrats and recipients to act as the left’s electorate. Instead of stealing the left’s thunder, they subsidized the triumphant long march of the left.

The liberal Republican prescription is still to Outleft the left, adopting some of its more popular ideas and social policies in a more sensible fashion. And they have never understood that the strategy, even when it succeeds in the short term, is doomed. You don’t win by making your enemy stronger. The left understands that. That is why it’s strategies once in power involve deepening and expanding its institutional power while destroying those of the right.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Danish Supermarket Gets Shipment of Cocaine, Instead of Bananas

COPENHAGEN, Denmark — Drug traffickers back in Colombia must be going bananas over how their shipment ended up at Danish supermarkets and not on the streets.

Police say employees at the supermarket chain Coop got a big surprise when they opened banana boxes from the South American country and found about 220 pounds of what police believe is cocaine.

The powder was discovered last week in Aarhus, western Denmark, when employees noticed that some of the boxes were heavier than others.

Coop spokesman Jens Juul says more bags with white powder were found Wednesday in a separate shipment from Colombia at a central dispatch facility in suburban Copenhagen.

Juul told the Danish news agency Ritzau the company has contacted their Colombian supplier.

Police are investigating, but haven’t made any arrests.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Denmark: NSA Surveillance Foiled Jyllands-Posten Terrorist Attack, US Says

Obama administration points to Danish case as justification for information mining program

US director of national intelligence James Clapper told the US media the massive data collection program carried out by his government’s National Security Agency (NSA), played a major roll in thwarting the planned 2010 terrorist attack against Jyllands-Posten newspaper’s Copenhagen offices.

Clapper said that information collected by the Prism programme led authorities to international terrorist David Coleman Headley, who admitted to taking part in a plot, along with co-conspirator Canadian-Pakistani businessman Tahawwur Rana, to attack Jyllands-Posten’s offices in Copenhagen and Aarhus and behead employees and thrown their heads into the street.

The plot was in response to the newspaper’s publishing of cartoons of the prophet Mohammed, which led to protests around the world and hatched various terrorist retribution plots.

Clapper’s argument was greeted with skepticism in many quarters. German chancellor Angela Merkel demanded an explanation as to why the US is monitoring the whereabouts of EU residents that use platforms like Facebook and Gmail.

US senator and chairperson of the Senate Intelligence Committee Diane Feinstein said it was another program — not Prism — that led intelligence officers to Headly.

Others questioned the veracity of the claim that Prism was needed to track Headly, who was already well-known to US authorities as an informant for the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

French Gov’t to Dissolve Far-Right Groups After Student Killing

PARIS, June 11 (Xinhua) — French government was working to shut down far-right youth groups after the killing of a leftist activist in Paris, in a move to crack down fascist cells, Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said Tuesday. Speaking at the National Assembly, French Premier announced the launch of a procedure, after proclaiming last week the shut down of the Revolutionary Nationalist Youths, whose militants were accused of violence leading to the death of a young student…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

German Authorities Worry About Growing Salafism

German authorities have voiced concern over the growing number of ultra-conservative Islamic Salafists in the country, some of whom are swelling jihadist ranks abroad, while warning of an increasingly violent German extreme right.

“Salafism is a particularly rapidly growing and extremely worrying group within the extremist Islamist movement,” Hans-Georg Maassen, head of domestic

intelligence, told a news conference as he presented his agency’s 2012 annual report on Tuesday.

Radical Islamists in Germany numbered 42,550 in 2012, according to surveillance services, and the number of Salafists, who espouse an austere form of Sunni Islam, within the movement grew to 4,500 from 3,800 in a year, he said.

Maassen added that while not all Salafists are jihadists, it was clear that those who departed Germany for Syria or Egypt were there for that purpose.

“One can say that Salafism is an essential step towards jihadism or for people ready to conduct terrorist attacks,” Maassen said.

He also stressed that the number of extremist Islamists in Germany did not signify there were “42,500 potential terrorists” in the country.

Still, some 1,000 people including some Salafists are considered dangerous and 130 are seen as a particular threat and are monitored around-the-clock.

The intelligence report also showed that Egypt had replaced the Waziristan region of Pakistan as the main centre for the training of jihadists.

Syria is also a favoured destination. “We counted more than 60 people who left Germany to fight in Syria,” Maassen said.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

International ‘Europe-China Trade War Looms’

La Tribune, 12 June 2013

The EU plans to file a complaint with the World Trade Organisation over import duties imposed by China on stainless steel tubes.

The procedure will amount to “a further step in the trade wrangle” between the Union and the People’s Republic, writes La Tribune, in the wake of Brussels’ threat to introduce sanctions on Chinese solar panels and Beijing’s retaliation that it plans to slap taxes on French wine and German cars.

For the online business news site, the move will allow —

… the EU to show China that it will contest any taxes that appear to be reprisals rather than measures based on the objective examination of trade practices. China currently has three contentious issues with the EU, while the European Union has six grounds for complaint against China.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Islamist Terror Suspect Held in Italy

Moroccan in Brescia ‘planned jihad’

(ANSA) — Rome, June 12 — Police in Brescia near Milan on Wednesday arrested the alleged head of the Italian branch of a Belgium-based Islamist organisation on suspicion of planning attacks in the northern Italian city.

Anas El Abboubi, alias ‘Anas Abdu Shakur’, born in Morocco in 1992 and living with his family near Brescia since 1999, had allegedly scouted out two targets on Google Maps, Brescia’s train station and its main military barracks, police said.

Police said they intercepted an email to foreign members of the organisation applauding the recent fatal attack on a British soldier in London and a copycat stabbing of a French soldier in Paris.

“There can be no peace with us,” he allegedly said.

The 20-year-old Moroccan reportedly told police he had “hated the West” since being “taunted as a member of the Taliban after the September 11 attacks in America” and recently vowed to “die for Allah”.

El Abboubi was also becoming increasingly interested in Syrian Islamist fighting against the regime there and had recruited others to join him in supporting their cause, travelling to Syria if necessary.

As well as Brescia, he was planning other attacks in other parts of Italy as well as France, police said.

He and the recruits were “united by a common hatred of Jews and a desire to fight against Western countries,” a police spokesman said.

“Via the Web, the Moroccan passed on translations of jihadist literature and acquired instructions on using explosives, weapons and fighting techniques,” he said.

Police seized papers written by El Abboubi “including verses in which he sings the praises of jihad against Italy and France and leaves a sort of spiritual testament containing a collection of his translations about the legitimacy of holy war,” the spokesman said.

During the six months he had been under surveillance before his arrest, police said, he also reportedly made no secret of his admiration for a compatriot, Mohamed Jarmoune, arrested in March 2012 and sentenced last month to five years and four months in jail on terrorism charges. El Abboubi recently set up the Italian chapter of the Web-based Sharia4 organisation, a movement started in Belgium in 2010 and inspired by the jihadist preacher Omar Bakri, police said. Sharia4 has been banned in several European countries.

El Abboubi was arrested at his home in the small town of Vobarno outside Brescia on suspicion of training terrorists and inciting religious and racist hatred, police said.

Another two people are under investigation on suspicion of committing the same crimes.

Police had been watching El Abboubi around the clock, and picked him up while he was on his way to take his school-leaving certificate.

Anti-terrorism police also searched the homes of four Moroccans near Brescia, 100 km east of Milan, and around Pordenone, a city in northeastern Italy.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italian Antitrust Authority Probing Major Insurers

Generali, Allianz among eight suspected of blocking competition

(ANSA) — Rome, June 12 — Italy’s antitrust authorities launched an investigation Wednesday into eight of the largest insurance companies who operate there.

The authorities said they suspect arrangements that would restrict competition were made between such major names as Unipol, Fonsai, Generali, Allianz, Royal Mutual, Catholic Insurance, Axa and Groupama.

The firms involved are large players in the life and auto insurance fields, commanding about 80% of premiums paid in Italy, according to authorities.

They allege that the companies made agreements to control competition among themselves.

The investigation is expected to be wrapped up by June 2014.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Prosecutors Ask for 12-Year Sentence for Ex-Abruzzo Governor

Del Turco charged in alleged public health scam

(ANSA) — Pescara, June 12 — Prosecutors asked Wednesday for a 12-year prison sentence for the former governor of the Abruzzo region, Ottaviano Del Turco.

He was arrested almost five years ago in connection with an alleged public health scam in the eastern Italian region.

Del Turco, a former Socialist trade union leader and ex-finance minister, was arrested with nine others on suspicion of fraud, corruption, embezzlement and money laundering involving some 14 million euros.

Del Turco is suspected of taking a bribe of almost six million euros, police sources have said.

As well as the 11 people arrested with Del Turco in 2008, 25 others were placed under investigation for suspected kickbacks.

After a career in trade unions, Del Turco rose to the top of Bettino Craxi’s Socialist Party before it was swept away in the Bribesville scandals of 1992-94.

He stayed on the centre left and served as head of parliament’s Anti-Mafia Commission between 1996 and 2000, when he was named finance minister.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Milan Commuter Trains Hit by Copper-Wire Theft

14 trains affected

(ANSA) — Milan, June 12 — Service on two of the main commuter train lines into Milan was disrupted Wednesday after the overnight theft of copper wire from tracks.

The local train company said 14 trains were affected by the latest in a string of such incidents across Italy.

Two were cancelled and the other 12 suffered delays of up to 50 minutes.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy to Release 4,000 Prisoners: Minister

Italy’s Justice Minister has said that four thousand prisoners will be released to tackle the problem of overcrowding in Italy’s jails.

The announcement, made in an interview with La Stampa newspaper, comes in response to mounting pressure from the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg to address the problem of prison overcrowding by May 2014.

According to the paper, President Giorgio Napolitano had been urging the government to take action over the last few days.

Currently in Italy, there are only 47,000 prison places for a total of 66,000 detainees.

According to European law, each prisoner must have at least three square metres in his or her cell. Any space smaller than this is considered torture.

When asked how she intended to proceed, Justice Minister Anna Maria Cancellieri, who was Interior Minister in Monti’s former technocrat government, told the paper: “On Friday or at the latest Saturday the government will make a decree to increase releases from prison and limit the number of admissions. In this way we will decrease the load in prisons down to between 3,500 and 4,000 presences.”

“By May next year we should have resolved the problem,” the minister said.

In addition, she added, a total of 10,000 prison places will be created in new prisons.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

‘Media May Call Sweden Democrats Xenophobic’

Referring to the far-right, anti-immigration Sweden Democrats as a “xenophobic” political party does not run afoul of rules requiring impartiality by Swedish broadcasters, an oversight body has ruled.

The case stems from a February 2012 broadcast of P4 Extra on Sveriges Radio (SR) in which a journalist who attended the same school as Sweden Democrat party leader Jimmy Åkesson was asked whether the two of them had met again as adults.

“And he went in that direction and became the leader of a xenophobic party and you became a journalist who focuses on racism, among other things. Have you met today as adults?” the presenter asked.

Two people reported the programme to the Swedish Broadcasting Commission (Granskningsnämnden, GRN), the government body tasked with regulating radio and television broadcasters.

Among other things, the commission reviews whether programmes live up to rules requiring impartiality, protecting children, and preventing undue intrusion into people’s private lives.

The complaints alleged that the Sweden Democrats aren’t a xenophobic party, but rather one that is critical of immigration and that referring to them as such amounted to bias.

But after comparing the party’s platforms from 2005 and 2011, the Broadcasting Commission has ruled that referring to the Sweden Democrats as “xenophobic” does not constitute bias, SvD reported.

The broadcasting regulator found that nationalism was a “central part of the party’s platform” and that the party advocated for a “common national and cultural identity among four-fifths of the population”.

Moreover, the Sweden Democrats believe that “it’s obvious that certain cultures are better than others”, the Broadcasting Commission found.

Karlsson disputed the ruling however, and pointed out that “15 percent of our members have immigrant backgrounds”.

“They shouldn’t get into political arguments and try to interpret what we mean,” he told SvD.

“It’s just as bad as saying that the Moderates are against salaried workers or the Social Democrats are anti-business.”

           — Hat tip: Steen [Return to headlines]

Netherlands: Fifteen National Exams Leaked Through Islamic School

THE HAGUE, 12/06/13 — Not just one but 15 national exams for secondary education school leavers have been stolen and distributed from the controversial Ibn Ghaldoun Islamic school in Rotterdam.

Last week, it emerged that the French exam at the pre-university VWO level of secondary education was stolen from the school’s vault. Now, the Education Ministry says the same thing happened at Ibn Ghaldoun to 14 other exams.

Everywhere in the Netherlands the French exam at the VWO level was cancelled after the initial discovery two weeks ago. Some 17,000 pupils nationwide were forced to take the national exam — a new version — a day later.

Pupils across the country now worry they may have to redo their exams. But this is unlikely, as the Education Ministry says there are no indications that the 14 other exams that also disappeared from Ibn Ghaldoun were distributed to pupils of other schools.

Three persons have been arrested in connection with the theft, all Ibn Ghaldoun pupils. Police said there were no signs of a break-in. The Education Ministry however says there is no reason to believe the school management is involved.

The school management is controversial. Its director is Ayhan Tonca, a Turk who was forced to leave as a candidate-MP for the Christian democrats (CDA) in 2006 for denying the genocide by Turkey of Armenians in 1915. He also said women who do not wear a veil commit “a sin”. But since 2008, he has been a member of the CDA’s academic bureau and in 2010 he received a royal decoration for his ‘contributions to Dutch society’.

Also, the Education Inspectorate discovered in 2007 that Ibn Ghaldoun had used government subsidies for pilgrimages to Mecca — also for Muslims who had no connection at all with the school. In total 1.2 million euros was spent on this and a series of other fraudulent constructions but the school refused to repay.

Following the French exam’s theft, weblog and other media were already speculating that there have been leaks to the pupils of Ibn Ghaldoun before because the school has made a remarkable rise on the education quality ladder of the Education Inspectorate. In fact, last year Ibn Ghaldoun ranked fourth among the Netherlands’ best schools. Only a couple of years earlier it was actually threatened with closure because its pupils results and the quality of teachers and lessons were labelled “very weak”.

[Return to headlines]

Spain: Five Islamist Terrorists Seized in Barcelona

Catalan police have arrested five Tunisian men in Barcelona for sharing over 400 videos on social networks of al-Qaeda leaders Bin Laden and Al-Zarqawi as well as footage of terrorist attacks and tutorials on bomb-making.

Operation Kartago led to the arrests of the five men in the Barcelona neighbourhoods of Raval, Encants and La Mina in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

The investigation began in 2012 when Spain’s national police force ascertained that the photos and videos being distributed online by the suspects were being approved and followed by a global jihadist movement.

Spain’s Interior Ministry is accusing the men of inciting Islamist terrorism and has pointed out that more arrests could take place if ongoing police searches in the Catalan capital find more extremist content being distributed online.

So far more than 400 photos, videos and texts have been found, including footage of al-Qaeda leaders Bin Laden and Al-Zarqawi giving speeches, executions by firing squad, terrorist attacks, tutorials on bomb-making and muhajideen training.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

UK: After Attacks on Mosques and Schools, British Muslims Say, ‘We’re Stronger Together’

The British state has used the recent killing of a soldier in London to whip up racism against Muslims. Racists have seized on the story to try and mount a campaign of terror against all Muslims. Osman Deen, a student at Bradford College, said, “Islamophobia has got worse since the Woolwich attack. I know Muslim women who have had their scarves pulled in the street. There has been a lot of online abuse.” Ayesha Elmahdi is a teacher in Manchester. “Lots of Muslims feel vulnerable,” she said. “They feel they should keep their heads down.”

This fear has meant that some Muslims fear going out, never mind joining protests against the racism. Rania Khan, a councillor in Tower Hamlets, explained how Muslims had contacted her because they felt unsafe. “One woman came to my surgery and said she was scared about travelling to Whitechapel from Bromley by Bow, just up the road,” she said. “The number of hate crimes has risen. I know friends and family who have had bad experiences.”

Hassan Mahamdallie is an anti-racist activist and socialist who lives near Woolwich. He said, “Some people ask me, ‘Where are the young Muslims? Why are there not more out marching and protesting?’ I say if I was a Muslim woman wearing a hijab I might feel a little under siege.” Many Muslims are furious that the government and right wing press has treated them as somehow responsible for the killing. “I have been asked to condemn the killing in Woolwich,” said Rania. “Why don’t the white councillors get asked if they condemn it? Why ask me?”…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

UK: BBC Crticised Over Today Interview With EDL Leader Tommy Robinson

The BBC has been criticised for carrying out an interview with Tommy Robinson, the leader of the far-right group the English Defence League, on Radio 4 this morning. Some listeners branded the interview on the Today programme ‘misguided and irresponsible’, with criticism the corporation didn’t provide a counter-argument to Robinson’s comments.

During the interview on Tuesday morning, Robinson called for all aspects of Sharia Law to be outlawed and the detention of Islamic extremists…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

UK: Bricklayer Attacked Mosque in “Revenge”, Court Told

A man who attacked a mosque after the killing of soldier Lee Rigby has pleaded guilty to racially or religiously aggravated criminal damage. Michael Manyweathers, 49, and three other men used a plank to smash windows at the Dorset Islamic Cultural Centre in Poole, on May 23…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

UK: Boxer Who Threatened Muslims With ‘Insane Violence’ While Posing With a Gun on Day of Murder of Lee Rigby is Jailed

A boxer who threatened Muslims with acts of ‘insane violence’ on Facebook hours after Drummer Lee Rigby was hacked to death was jailed for four months today.

Tony Perrin, 27, was arrested near his south London home after he posted his threats with a photo of himself wearing a balaclava and pointing a gun at the camera…

Jailing Perrin for four months Judge Clark said the aggravating factors were his ‘glorification of firearms’ and the incitement of ‘revenge attacks’.

Perrin admitted that the handgun was only a BB gun and that he was drunk when he made the offensive post.

He had also engaged with a Muslim online soon afterwards — a conversation which led him to take down his post.

But by this time it had already gone ‘viral’ and the damage had been done.

Perrin lost his job as a scaffolder as a result of the publicity surrounding the case. the court heard.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

UK: EDL Leader Tommy Robinson Threatens Nazi Salute Members With ‘Violent Act’

English Defence League leader Tommy Robinson today appeared to threaten violence against Far-Right thugs who did Nazi salutes — seconds after condemning all attacks. He was given an early morning radio slot by the BBC to lay out EDL policies and even to argue that an attack on an Islamic community centre might have been committed by Muslims.

Mr Robinson said he “utterly condemned” any violent act by anybody including EDL members.

Pressed on whether he condemned EDL supporters making Nazi salutes, he added: “Well, I think if I was standing next to them there would be a violent act. If you… look into our history I was actually arrested for assaulting someone doing that at our demonstrations. I wouldn’t tolerate that.”

The broadcast came amid tensions in the wake of the killing of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich, with an increase in the number of attacks on mosques and Islamic centres. Mr Robinson denied his group was to blame for an arson attack on an Islamic centre, which was daubed with the letters EDL, in Muswell Hill last week. “It just seems ridiculous to me and I think everyone can see through it that that’s done to make it look like the English Defence League,” he said. “If I’m honest, I’m completely sceptical that it is even non-Muslims that have done that.” Asked if he would condemn attacks by his members on Muslims, he replied: “Utterly condemn it, disgraceful.”

Police minister Damian Green yesterday said that all MPs “abhor and reject” the attacks on religious institutions since the Woolwich atrocity.

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

UK: Hats Off to Sarah Montague

Well done to the BBC Today programme’s Sarah Montague for not screaming abuse at Tommy Robinson, the English Defence League leader, when she interviewed him this morning. It seems that many wanted her simply to shriek abuse at the man — and now she is being criticised for having been too lax.

Being aggressive with interviewees simply because you don’t like their opinions never really works; getting a bit arsey with them when they obfuscate or hide the truth, however, does work. But it makes no sense, having taken a decision to interview the clown, to then subject him to an intemperate tirade of bien pensant outrage. This is the thing about the London Left: there are some opinions they simply cannot bear to hear, and they mustn’t be contested so much as obliterated.


NOTE: This is posted in the newsfeed so you can see the 71 comments, many of them having this tenor:

“I often feel that we are now living in an Alice in Wonderland parallel universe where the ideology that allows female genital mutilation, oppresses Christians, Jews and Hindus as second class citizens, and has had some 20,000 terrorist attacks committed in its name in 10 years, is on the “moderate” side…while anyone who dares to criticise this ideology and suggests it needs to be stopped from extending its influence is an “extremist”.

Seneca III, who submitted this, said:

“…spent a lot of time lately monitoring trends rather than concentrating on singular happenstances and there is without doubt a definite sea change in public opinion, or an increasing willingness to publicly voice that opinion.

“The comments following the attached short article by Rod Liddle in the Spectator are an excellent example thereof and accurately reflect similar comment patterns in other MSM outlets such as the DM and the Telegraph. Whilst many are still finding it difficult to shake off their long term ideological conditioning, and in most cases still try to disassociate themselves from any connection with or overall approval of the EDL (and, by implication the CJ as a whole), the overall impression given is that they too have had enough. It may be that in the UK at least Woolwich was the Liberal-Islamofascist’s Breivik moment.”

           — Hat tip: Seneca III [Return to headlines]

UK: New Terror Control Regime ‘Will Let Suspect Back on the Streets’

Ministers were condemned today over the case of a terror suspect who is due to be freed from special controls, despite fears he is prepared to launch a suicide attack to kill many people. The man, known as AM, has already been allowed to return to London, after anti-terror measures were watered down in a Coalition compromise. Under the new regime, remaining restrictions on him are due to be lifted in January.

It follows last year’s replacement of control orders by the less strict Terrorism Prevention and Investigation Measure (Tpim). Security minister James Brokenshire was challenged in Parliament over how the public would be protected once AM’s Tpim runs out. He was originally detained over a 2006 plot to bomb a transatlantic aircraft after it had taken off from Heathrow. In the High Court, Mr Justice Wilkie called him “highly intelligent” and “prepared to be a martyr in an attack designed to take many lives”…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

UK: Preying on the Poor: The Impoverished London Borough Which Has Eighty Two Betting Shops (That’s Six Per Square Mile)

On high streets where many shops still lie empty as they recover from the worst recession in Britain since the 1930s, one type of business has continued to thrive in the economic gloom.

Bookmakers have swamped the UK’s shopping parades — with numbers up 25 per cent since 2008 — and in one London borough, Newham, there are currently 82 — six per square mile.

Around almost every corner in this generally deprived part of East London are shops where people can stake £100 a spin on casino-style gambling machines, which are as addictive as crack cocaine.

Yesterday Newham Council was in court to defend its decision to block plans for a new Paddy Power shop, and if they win it could lead to hundreds of betting shop licences nationwide being turned down or revoked.

The local council say these bookmakers, often open for 14 hours a day, fuel violent crime, street drinking and underage gambling.

A source from within the council said: ‘We mapped out where crimes and disorder take place and compared that with where the betting shops are — and it lit up like a Christmas tree’.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

UK: Staff at East London Gym Held on Suspicion of Spying on Naked Women

Six members of staff at an east London gym have been arrested on suspicion of spying on naked women in the changing rooms. Police launched an investigation after activeNewham, which took over the running of East Ham Leisure Centre in January, carried out its own internal inquiry. Officers are understood to have seized a number of mobile phones and computers from the suspects. The men were arrested on April 30 for offences relating to Voyeurism under Section 67 of the Sexual Offences Act. They have been bailed to return to an east London police station later this month…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

Italian Diplomats Escape Libya Car Bomb

Italian diplomats in Tripoli escaped from their booby-trapped car before it exploded during a shopping trip in the Libyan capital on Tuesday, officials said.

“The Italian diplomats got out of their car in the district of Zawiet al-Dahmani to shop when they noticed a wire hanging beneath the vehicle,” a diplomat said.

The driver called the police who blocked the road shortly before the explosion, he said.

“They evacuated the area before the car exploded half an hour later,” added the diplomat, who was speaking on condition of anonymity.

That version of events was confirmed by witnesses in the neighbourhood located a few kilometres (miles) from the centre of Tripoli.

The witnesses said the blast was of low intensity and that the car was not completely destroyed.

According to the diplomat, the explosive device was attached to the car in another district of the Libyan capital where the Italians had made a first


In January, the Italian consul in Libya’s second city of Benghazi, Guido De Sanctis, escaped an assassination attempt when his armoured car was fired on.

Italy is Libya’s former colonial ruler and enjoyed close ties with slain dictator Moamer Kadhafi, although it later joined NATO efforts to unseat him.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Children Take Up Arms in Gaza in Summer

Military flavour to activities of Hamas and Jihad

(ANSAmed) — GAZA — As schools close for the summer in Gaza, children from age six to 16 are taking part in recreation camps organised by both Hamas and the Islamic Jihad movements in a paramilitary style.

At the camps, the children receive arms made of wood and take part in exercises which simulate combat. In several cases they are called upon to crawl under barbed wire and demonstrate their courage avoiding fire.

In one recent case they simulated an attack on a small Israeli fort.

Several groups organised by Hamas marched on the streets of Gaza yesterday carrying the green flags of the movement.

Local sources say the camps organised by the Islamic Jihad operate on a more technical level, while those of Hams offer more hospitality and generous lunches.

Islamic Jihad has organised one of the camps in the south of the Gaza Strip. Every morning they will travel by bus collecting children from Rafah, Khan Yunes and Nusseirat.

After four hours of activities the children return home.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

New Iran Crisis Looming

by Yaakov Lappin

At a time when news headlines from the Middle East are dominated by battles in Syria, growing Sunni-Shi’ite conflict in Iraq and Lebanon, and mass disturbances in Turkey, it is easy to forget about Iran’s nuclear program; but early warning indicators are signaling an impending, explosive crisis over Iran’s refusal to halt its covert nuclear weapons program.

At enrichment facilities in Natanz and Fordow, Iran is continuing to inch closer to the point of nuclear breakout, as a report by the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) recently noted.

The report confirmed what defense analysts had been saying for months: that Iran installed hundreds of additional centrifuges for uranium enrichment, enhancing its nuclear program, while continuing enrichment activities.

Tehran has also taken steps to create a parallel path to nuclear weapons through its plutonium plant at Arak.

Iranian engineers are constructing a reactor at the heavy water plant at Arak, which could enable the production of a plutonium-based atomic bomb.

Meanwhile, Iran continues to deny IAEA inspectors access to its suspected nuclear trigger facility at Parchin, and has been busy shifting earth around the site to cover its activities. At this point, the IAEA said, even if inspectors were allowed to visit, the cover-up would mean they may not find a thing.

These developments have led leading Israeli defense experts at the Institute for National Security Institute in Tel Aviv to conclude that unless the White House soon adjusts its policy on Iran, the U.S. may end up adopting a policy of nuclear containment rather than prevention.

The analysts, Emily Landau, director of the Arms Control and Regional Security Program at the INSS, and Ephraim Asculai, a senior research associate, questioned President Barack Obama’s assertion that the US will know ahead of time if Iran took a decision to produce nuclear weapons. They cited historical failures by intelligence agencies, and cautioned that relying on the IAEA to identify the danger in time could prove disastrous.

Even if a timely warning were received, they said, it remains unclear that there would enough time to reverse Iran’s trajectory, or that the White House would be willing to employ force.

Most importantly, their paper said that it is now “blatantly apparent” that the diplomatic approach for solving the Iranian crisis has failed, “even though the US administration has yet to admit this.”

Their stance was echoed on Monday by the United Nation’s top nuclear diplomat, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano.

Amano told the IAEA’s board of governors that talks with Iran are simply “going around in circles,” and described the past ten rounds of negotiations as failures.

Using unusually blunt language to underscore the dead-end situation, Amano said: “To be frank, for some time now, we have been going around in circles. This is not the right way to address issues of such great importance to the international community, including Iran.”


Israel, which is more threatened by Iran’s nuclear program than is the U.S., as well as militarily weaker than Washington, has less time to make its up mind on how and when to proceed to avert a threat to its existence.

Israel’s Minister for Strategic Affairs, Yuval Steinitz, reflected the urgency of the situation in a warning he sent out to the public last week. “Time is running out,” he said. “We have only a few months. The danger is a global one, which will change the face of history. Iran could have hundreds of atomic bombs and hundreds of long-range missiles.”

He added: “The danger is many times bigger than North Korea.”


NOTE: This news has many links in the original at Gatestone. Read the rest there,too.

[Return to headlines]

Syria: United for Reconciliation With Muslims, Christians Return to Al-Qusair

For months, the town’s 3,000 Christians lived in neighbouring villages. The first families arrived in the city shortly after the ouster of Islamic extremists by the regime. Muslims themselves accuse the rebels of stirring sectarian hatred in Syria. Along with the shrine of St Elijah, the local mosque was destroyed as well.

Al-Qusair (AsiaNews) — After fleeing to surrounding villages and the capital Damascus, Christians from al-Qusair are returning to their homes after almost two years. Many have lost everything; some have started to remove rubble from rooms and rebuild roofs, bringing life back to a city that in recent months had lost more than 90 per cent of its population, going from 30,000 inhabitants to 500.

Sources told AsiaNews that in 2011 more than 3,000 Christians fled the city seeking refuge with relatives and friends. In recent months, the only non-Muslim residents was elderly Catholic couple, husband and wife. “The couple,” they said, “did not know where to run. Their only daughter is a Melkite nun, who resides abroad. They were helped by their Muslim neighbours.”

Media reports describe Syria as a place devastated by the conflict between Shias and Sunnis, which has also affected Christians. However, for sources the country was really devastated by outside forces, which have taken advantage of the instability and peaceful uprisings of 2011 to pursue their political and ideological agendas, which reached a peak with the intervention of Hizbollah, the Lebanese Shia paramilitary movement, fighting alongside the Syrian army.

Located on the border with Lebanon, al-Qusair was one of the first cities to organise pro-democracy demonstrations against the Assad regime and later set up a national committee to prevent clashes between religious factions.

“These committees,” sources told AsiaNews, “saved several villages and towns, preserving them from the wave of Islamic extremism that has been causing destruction in the past few months in Aleppo and other towns in the country.”

“In al-Qusair,” they explain, “churches and mosques were built next to each other.” An example is the shrine of St Elijah, which was recently desecrated by foreign Islamists, after surviving the fighting between local rebels and the army, who have always respected places of worship.

The outrage caused by the al-Nusra militia, which has fighters from 15 nations in its ranks, has aroused the anger of the population.

“It’s a big shock to see something like this in a church,” Osama Hassan, a Muslim and a government employee, told Reuters. “For us, a church is the same as a mosque.”

A nearby mosque was also heavily damaged, parts of its minaret blasted away, he added.

For locals, Islamist fighters are to blame for sectarian divisions in the population, which includes Sunni and Shiite Muslims, as well as Christians.

“Here, the Christian and Muslim cemeteries are right next to each other,” said one resident. “We never had divisions.” (S.C.)

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Syria: ‘Rebels Kills 60 Shia Fighters Near Iraqi Border in East’

Hatla, 12 June (AKI) — Syrian rebels killed 60 Shia pro-government fighters in the east of the country, near the border with Iraq, activists reported on Wednesday.

The bloodbath took place near Hatla in Dayr az-Zor province, the UK-based opposition Syrian Human Rights Observatory group said on its Facebook page.

The group posted an unauthenticated video of the attack to its Facebook page.

“Various rebel factions” were responsible for the killings, said the group, which relies for its information on a network of activists and doctors inside Syria.

The rebels burned town homes and killed civilians in the attack, according to the report.

Syrian government sources said there had been a massacre of civilians.

The Al-Qaeda aligned Sunni extremist group the Al-Nusra Front has been linked to previous sectarian killings in Syria since the uprising against president Bashar al-Assad’s authoritarian rule began in March 2011.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

2 Killed, 2 Injured in South Thailand Attacks Ahead of Peace Talk

BANGKOK, June 12 (Xinhua) — Two civilians were killed and two soldiers injured in three separate attacks in Thailand’s restive far south on Wednesday, signaling escalating violence ahead of this week’s peace talk. Two soldiers of Pattani 21 special task force were patrolling on foot in Pattani’s Khok Pho district Wednesday morning when a grenade was hurled at them by unidentified men. They were injured by the blast and were taken to a local hospital…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

Gunmen Kidnap British Energy Worker in Indonesia

Gunmen have kidnapped a British man working for an energy company in the restive Indonesian province of Aceh, officials said today.

Malcolm Primrose was being driven to a work site on Tuesday when he was stopped by a group of armed men at around 11.00 am (0400 GMT) in Lubuk Pempeng village, East Aceh district, officials said. “The man was on his way to a drilling site when at least four men with firearms stopped his car,” provincial police spokesman Gustav Leo told AFP. The kidnappers tied up his driver before taking the Briton to their car and driving off, he said, adding that details of the incident came from the driver, an Indonesian. “We are pursuing the kidnappers based on the witness’s testimony. We don’t know yet their motive.” A source familiar with the matter said that the oil and gas company Primrose was working for, Medco Energi Internasional, had not yet received any ransom demand…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

How the MOD’s Strategy in Afghanistan Helped the Taliban — Not Our Troops

by Robert Oulds

Robert Oulds is the author of Montgomery and the First War on Terror: What a British Military Hero Can Teach Those Fighting Today’s War on Terror published by Bretwalda Books and Director of the Bruges Group.

Churchill thought that if he were still Prime Minister he would not have begun the Suez Operation, but he recognised that cutting and running before the job was done was a major mistake. Clearly history does repeat itself, first as tragedy, then as farce. The latest shambles has been British military involvement in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan. This comes soon after the abject failure to defeat the insurgency in the Basra Province of Southern Iraq (2003 — 2009).

Such defeats have long-term consequences — and not just for the local population who are exposed to the rule of the Salafist Sunni extremists that are in league with the criminal enterprises that are flooding many nations with cheap heroin. In 1983, U.S peacekeeping forces based in Beirut were attacked by a massive truck bomb leading to much loss of life. This led to the political decision to withdraw from the Lebanon, an act which was to convince Osama Bin Laden that America lacked resolve and was susceptible to terrorism.

Where has Britain gone wrong? Some have pointed to too few troops and not enough helicopters, and the use of vehicles that offer little to no protection from improvised explosive devices. Clearly, these are factors, but at the heart of the failure in Afghanistan is something that is perhaps more deeply ingrained and fundamental. The strategy employed by the Ministry of Defence and the army’s top brass makes them directly culpable for handing the initiative to the Taliban…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

I’m ‘Not a Traitor, ‘ NSA Leaker Edward Snowden Tells Hong Kong Newspaper

The former CIA employee who leaked information about the U.S. surveillance programs before fleeing to China said Wednesday he wants the city of Hong Kong to decide his fate.

Edward Snowden told the South China Morning Post newspaper that he’s “neither a traitor nor hero. I’m an American.”

The 29-year-old reportedly also told the newspaper his plans for the immediate future, steps he claims the U.S. has taken since he broke his cover in Hong Kong, fears for his family as well as explosive details on U.S. surveillance targets.

Snowden says it was not his intent “to hide from justice” but to “reveal criminality.”

“I have had many opportunities to flee HK, but I would rather stay and fight the United States government in the courts, because I have faith in Hong Kong’s rule of law,” he told the paper.

Snowden says he has committed no crimes in Hong Kong and has “been given no reason to doubt (Hong Kong’s legal) system.”

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Three Astronauts Are Blasted Into Space as China Launches Mission to Orbit the Earth From a Remote Site in the Gobi Desert

A Chinese spacecraft has blasted off today on a 15-day mission to an experimental space lab in the latest step towards the development of a space station.

The Shenzhou 10 spacecraft was launched from a remote site in the Gobi desert in China’s far west at 5.38pm (9.38am) under warm, clear blue skies, in images carried live on state television.

Once in orbit, the craft will dock with the Tiangong (Heavenly Palace) 1, a trial space laboratory module, and the two male and one female astronauts will carry out various experiments and test the module’s systems.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

GMO Feed Turns Pig Stomachs to Mush! Shocking Photos Reveal Severe Damage Caused by GM Soy and Corn

[WARNING: Disturbing content.]

(NaturalNews) If you have stomach problems or gastrointestinal problems, a new study led by Dr. Judy Carman may help explain why: pigs fed a diet of genetically engineered soy and corn showed a 267% increase in severe stomach inflammation compared to those fed non-GMO diets. In males, the difference was even more pronounced: a 400% increase. (For the record, most autistic children are males, and nearly all of them have severe intestinal inflammation.)

The study was conducted on 168 young pigs on an authentic farm environment and was carried out over a 23-week period by eight researchers across Australia and the USA. The lead researcher, Dr. Judy Carman, is from the Institute of Health and Environmental Research in Kensington Park, Australia. The study has now been published in the Journal of Organic Systems, a peer-reviewed science journal.

The study is the first to show what appears to be a direct connection between the ingestion of GMO animal feed and measurable damage to the stomachs of those animals. Tests also showed abnormally high uterine weights of animals fed the GMO diets, raising further questions about the possibility of GMOs causing reproductive organ damage.

Proponents of corporate-dominated GMO plant science quickly attacked the study, announcing that in their own minds, there is no such thing as any evidence linking GMOs to biological harm in any animals whatsoever. And they are determined to continue to believe that, even if it means selectively ignoring the increasingly profound and undeniable tidal wave of scientific studies that repeatedly show GMOs to be linked with severe organ damage, cancer tumors and premature death…

The GMO biotech industry was able to escape any meaningful regulation of GMOs in the United States by (ridiculously) claiming GMOs were substantially no different from non-genetically engineered crops. “They’re all the same!” we were told. And the USDA bought it.

So how did Monsanto patent its GM corn, then? You’re not supposed to be able to patent something unless it’s uniquely different. Thus, the very fact that Monsanto has acquired patents on its GMO crop varieties is proof that the company itself believes its seeds are different.

And what’s different about Monsanto’s GM corn? It produces a deadly insecticide grown right into every kernel. That insecticide, of course, is what kills insects that try to eat the crop. And how does it kill those insects? It fatally damages their digestive systems. That same insecticide stays inside the corn even as the crop is turned into animal feed… or corn chip snacks… or flaked corn breakfast cereal.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Inside the Gallipoli Mosque in Auburn, Sydney

For most Australians, Gallipoli holds the reverence of war and sacrifice. But in Sydney’s western suburb of Auburn, Gallipoli is also the namesake of a Turkish mosque where Islamic men, women and children meet. Hamish Macdonald visited Gallipoli Mosque for one of their weekly Friday prayers, which are mandatory for Islamic men.

Kuranda Seyit is the founder of Australia FAIR, the Forum on Australian and Islamic Relations. He met Hamish at Gallipoli Mosque, and led him through the ritual of prayer time. The mosque itself is majestic and ornate, and outside is a small fountain, where you find people baring their feet and crouching around, washing their hands, mouth, nose, face, head, arms, legs and feet.

“Before you enter the mosque, you should purify yourself,” Kuranda says. “You should make some incantations, which is saying that you’re doing this in the name of God. You’re getting your mind ready before you go into the mosque.”

The muezzin call signals prayer time. Kuranda says, “The Christians use bells, the Jews use horns, and they [Muslims] wanted to be different, so they use the voice.”

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]

Manual Left Behind in Mali Suggests Al Qaeda Training to Use Feared Surface-to-Air Missile

TIMBUKTU, Mali — The photocopies of the manual lay in heaps on the floor, in stacks that scaled one wall, like Xeroxed, stapled handouts for a class.

Except that the students in this case were Al Qaeda fighters in Mali. And the manual was a detailed guide, with diagrams and photographs, on how to use a weapon that particularly concerns the United States: A surface-to-air missile capable of taking down a commercial airplane.

The 26-page document in Arabic, recovered by The Associated Press in a building that had been occupied by Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb in Timbuktu, strongly suggests the group now possesses the SA-7 surface-to-air missile, known to the Pentagon as the Grail, according to terrorism specialists. And it confirms that the Al Qaeda cell is actively training its fighters to use these weapons, also called man-portable air-defense systems, or MANPADS, which likely came from the arms depots of ex-Libyan strongman Col. Muammar Qaddafi.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Denmark: ‘Use Danish Prostitutes’ Says Anti-Immigrant MP

COPENHAGEN — A woman lawmaker from an anti-immigrant Danish political party said on Wednesday that men should visit only Danish prostitutes to help combat trafficking of foreign sex workers.

“I think we should try to stop this trafficking and that means it’s best if they don’t go to a foreign girl,” Pia Adelsteen of the Danish People’s Party (DPP) told AFP.

Her remarks came after a poll by the Ministry for Gender Equality showed that one in seven Danish men believe it is acceptable to use a prostitute who has been the victim of trafficking.

“I think we should look into whether there’s anything that can be done so that prostitutes could show that they have chosen this for themselves,” she said.

“I have nothing against men paying for sex, or women for that matter.”

Denmark is the only country in the Nordic region to allow both the sale and purchase of sex.

But the sex trade remains in a legal grey area, with prostitutes required to pay taxes without being covered by labour laws or the country’s generous unemployment benefits.

Half of Denmark’s prostitutes come from abroad, the National Board of Social Services said in a 2010 report, including 900 from Thailand, 1,000 from central and eastern Europe, and 300 from Africa, mostly Nigeria.

The DPP was a key ally of Denmark’s centre-right government for a decade until 2011 and pushed through through some of Europe’s most stringent immigration regulations.

These included barring Danes under the age of 24 from bringing in a spouse who was not an EU citizen, and a system favouring immigrants with jobs and Western language skills.

[Comment from Steen — Swedish press is horrified — prostitutes’ clients are fined harshly in Sweden, for the woman is always a victim.]

           — Hat tip: Steen [Return to headlines]

In ‘Fixing’ Immigration, The Fix is in

By Labor Day, GOP leadership will have helped President Barack Obama turn his summer of scandal and retreat into a triumph.

Congress has begun working through the final passage of a comprehensive immigration bill and regardless of what you have heard, the fix is in. There will be a bill and if you took the time to read it, not only would you hate it, you might be the only one to complete the assignment.

Spoiler alert: The leadership will make sure the bill passes, no matter what it says.

Here are some scary numbers:

A study by the Heritage Foundation, authored by Robert Rector and Jason Richwine, estimated that in 2010 the average illegal alien family received $24,721 in government benefits and services, while contributing just over $10,387 in taxes.

Upon amnesty, these aliens will be granted free and open access to some 80 different means-tested welfare programs, including Obamacare, Social Security and Medicare. Not only blowing the budgetary gaskets of these programs, but more importantly for Democrats expanding the payrolls of the middle-class bureaucrats and paper-shufflers…

Remember, dear reader, Republicans are not conservatives. Republicans are politicians and their party is where conservatives are most comfortable right now. Republicans are people who take checks from the Chamber of Commerce, so if American business needs cheap engineers, nannies and lettuce-pickers, guess what Republicans will support?

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Senator Rand Paul’s Keynote Speech at Immigration Forum


“As we continue to debate immigration in Congress this week, I think sometimes the human factor gets lost. When discussing the issue, I think it’s important to remember that we’re talking about people, not just policy.

We’re not talking about criminals we’re talking about immigrant workers caught up in a failed government visa program.

I think it’s always important that we put a human face on immigration and not just talk about numbers and statistics.

I can’t think about immigration without thinking about my own family.

My German great-grandparents didn’t speak much English when they came to America. They didn’t have much, but they also didn’t ask for much—all they wanted was an opportunity.

They began in America peddling vegetables. They finally got that opportunity when they started a dairy business in their garage, scraping together a living, raising a family, and constantly working to give their children a better life than they had.

My great-grandfather came to America in the 1880s. His father died after only six months in America. At 14, my great-grandfather was alone.

He survived and ultimately thrived in his new country with a new language. In their home and their church they spoke German.

As the son of immigrants, my grandfather, who only had an 8th grade education, would live to see his own children all go to college. They became ministers, professors, doctors and accountants and one of them became a Congressman.

My family’s story is like that of millions of others who came to this country. Every generation of immigrants wants these opportunities.

The problem we face today is: How do we now reflect this in our 21st century immigration policy?

It is absolutely vital for both the success of our immigration policy and for the purposes of national security that we finally secure our borders.

Not to stop most immigrants from coming—we welcome them and in fact should seek to increase legal immigration.

The Republican Party must embrace more legal immigration.

Unfortunately, like many of the major debates in Washington, immigration has become a stalemate—where both sides are imprisoned by their own rhetoric or attachment to sacred cows that prevent the possibility of a balanced solution.

First, everyone has to acknowledge that we aren’t going to deport 12 million illegal immigrants.

If you wish to work, if you wish to live and work in America, then we will find a place for you.

In order to bring conservatives to this cause however, those who work for reform must understand that a real solution must ensure that our borders are secure.

But we also must treat those who are already here with understanding and compassion.

The first part of my plan — border security — must be certified by Border Patrol and an Investigator General and then voted on by Congress to ensure it has been accomplished.

This is what I call Trust but Verify…”


[Return to headlines]

Spread the Word What the Senate is Doing

The Senate voted yesterday to move forward on the Gang of Eight’s immigration plan—which would grant amnesty to 11 million illegal immigrants.

Insanity is often defined as doing the same thing over and over yet expecting a different result. As Heritage’s David Inserra points out, “Instead of new ideas, the current bill is essentially just recycling the flawed and failed ideas of the past.”

Remember, once amnesty is granted it can never be taken away. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) took to the Senate floor yesterday to outline several reasons why we may be asking for a mulligan on this amnesty proposal.

With this bill, the American people are being sold a product. They’re being asked to accept legalization. And in exchange, they’d be assured through this legislation that the laws are going to be enforced.

But this “product” contains all sorts of hidden agendas and faulty promises, with no guarantees that the promises will come true once the amnesty is in place.

“The Obama Administration has pushed the envelope by waiving welfare laws,” Grassley reminded the Senate, so why should we assume the Administration wouldn’t do it again? “The reality check for the American people is that there are loopholes and the potential for public benefits to go to those who are legalized under the bill.”

The danger of putting too many things in one bill is that you end up having to pass it to see what’s in it. But we know one thing: Amnesty for illegal immigrants is the first order of business.

We’ve tried it before, and it didn’t work. This is the wrong way to address a serious issue with trillions in taxpayer dollars at stake.

[Return to headlines]

Turks Charged With Aiding Illegal Immigration Into Italy

Charges laid after 58 immigrants smuggled in

(ANSA) — Catanzaro, June 11 — Police in Calabria said Tuesday they arrested two Turkish citizens on charges of aiding and abetting illegal immigration into Italy.

The charges were laid after Coast Guard crews rescued 58 people, including five women and a three-month-old baby, who were being smuggled by boat into the country Monday night.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Group Sorry for Pope ‘Gay Lobby’ Report

‘Structure bigger issue than sexuality’, abuse victims say

(ANSA) — Rome, June 12 — A key Latin American Catholic Church group said Wednesday it was sorry about the “confusion” caused by the publication of members’ accounts of a meeting with Pope Francis where he is quoted as lamenting a “stream of corruption” in the Roman Curia and a gay lobby in the Vatican.

The Latin American and Caribbean Confederation of Religious (CLAR) said the pope’s reported comments, published in Spanish Tuesday by progressive Chilean-based website Reflection and Liberation, “cannot with certainty be attributed to the Holy Father, only their general sense”.

CLAR apologised to Francis, saying it was “deeply sorry”, after “the personal accounts of those present at the June 6 audience” were picked up and translated by the Rorate Caeli blog, which is read in Vatican circles.

It stressed the pope’s comments had not been recorded but were what CLAR members remembered of his answers to their questions.

Francis was asked about the panel of cardinals he has set up to help him reform the Curia, the Catholic Church’s central administrative body.

He was quoted as replying: “…it is difficult. In the Curia, there are also holy people, really, there are holy people. But there also is a stream of corruption, there is that as well, it is true… The ‘gay lobby’ is mentioned, and it is true, it is there… We need to see what we can do…” Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi on Tuesday declined to comment on the audience, stressing its content was private. But the pontiff’s reported comments have been taken as surprising confirmation of media reports about alleged corruption and dysfunction in the Holy See.

Exactly a month after his election to succeed Benedict XVI, on April 13, Francis name a panel of eight high-profile, international cardinals to advise him on reforming Church governance.

Shortly before Benedict’s shock resignation on February 28 after a year of scandals including leaks of sensitive documents by the pope’s butler, Rome’s left-leaning daily La Repubblica and Silvio Berlusconi’s flagship newsmagazine Panorama ran reports on an alleged “gay lobby” with sway over Vatican policy.

The unsources reports claimed the supposed lobby may have pursued its ends through blackmail and suggested that the scandals had led in part to Benedict’s decision to resign.

Details of the so-called Vatileaks scandal were laid out in a dossier compiled by three trusted cardinals for Benedict, who left it for Francis.

The Vatican denounced the reports as “unverified, unverifiable or completely false.” In CLAR’s report of the June 6 audience, Francis is also said to have complained about various unorthodox strains of thought in the Catholic Church, including gnostics and pantheists.

The Holy See held its silence Wednesday as ‘Vatican gay lobby’ headlines bounced around the world media.

But a leading group supporting victims of priest sex abuse responded to the reports.

“Sexual orientation isn’t the real problem. Sexually active and thus compromised clerics are the real problem,” said Barbara Dorris, outreach director of the US-based Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP). “Allegedly celibate men (gay or straight) can, and often do, take advantage of their status and power.

“It’s highly unlikely there will be a thorough ‘clean sweep’ of Curia personnel. But if that were to happen, it still won’t make much of a difference.

“Structure, not sexuality, is the real issue. The church is a monarchy. Monarchs are unaccountable. So many monarchs are corrupt”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Pope Admits There is a ‘Gay Lobby’ At the Highest Levels of the Vatican

Pope Francis has acknowledged the existence of a ‘gay lobby’ inside the Vatican’s secretive administration for the first time.

Speaking during an audience with Latin American Catholics, the Argentine Pontiff said that there was a ‘current of corruption’ in the Roman Curia — the central governing body of the Catholic Church.

He also admitted the existence of a long-rumoured ‘gay lobby’ in the Curia, and hinted that he might take action over the issue.

When the previous Pope, Benedict XVI, announced his decision to retire, many suspected the work of the rumoured gay lobby at the heart of the Curia.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

TV’s Feckless Fathers ‘Give Dads a Bad Name’: Programmes Attacked for ‘Casual Contempt’ Of Men

It’s enough to shake dads out of their slumber and get them leaping out of armchairs with rage.

Fathers are routinely misrepresented as useless and lazy in TV shows, according to a survey of parents.

Children in particular are bombarded with the ‘casual contempt’ of men and the damaging stereotype continues in adult programmes — reinforcing the negative impression.

Many parents complain it amounts to form of ‘discrimination against dads’ that would cause an outcry if women were treated the same way.


An overwhelming 93 per cent of mums and dads said that the way fathers appear on television, as well as books and adverts, bears no relation to their real-life contribution to family life.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Islam’s Dangerous Absurdities

By: Raymond Ibrahim


There is a reason why Islam’s guardians—past and present—always threaten Muslims to take the sunna seriously: Muhammad said any number of bizarre or perverse things that naturally provoke abhorrence, if not laughter.

Let us examine just one: the Muslim notion of adult breastfeeding, or rida’ al-kabir in Islam, which started when Muhammad commanded a woman to “breastfeed” a grown man. Because it is contained in a canonical hadith, today, nearly 1400 years later, top Muslim authorities still advocate this perverse practice. After all, to reject it or any other canonical hadith is to reject the sources and methodology of usul al-fiqh—in short, to reject Sharia.

Now, let us connect the dots to see how the bizarre in Islam demonstrates the violent by asking the following simple question:

If Muslims are still compelled to be true to things like “adult breastfeeding,” simply because 7th century Muhammad said so, is it not logical to accept that they embrace their prophet’s even better documented and unequivocal words concerning the infidel?

Look at it this way: the issue of adult breastfeeding is embarrassing for Muslims; far from providing them with any sort of advantage or benefits, it places them, especially their women, in a ludicrous position (indeed, it is ranked first in this list of “top ten bizarre or ridiculous fatwas”). So why is it still a relevant issue among Muslims? Because Muhammad once commanded it. Thus, like it or not, Muslims must somehow come to grips with it.

What, then, of Muhammad’s other commandments—commandments that, if upheld, far from embarrassing Muslims, provide them with power, wealth, and hedonistic joys—that is, commandments that jibe quite well with mankind’s most primitive impulses? I speak of Muhammad’s (and by extension Sharia’s) commandments for Muslims to wage war (“jihad”) upon the infidel, to plunder the infidel of his wealth, women, and children, and to keep him in perpetual subjugation—all things that define Islam’s history vis-à-vis the non-Muslim.

In other words, the Muslim mentality that feels the need to address adult breastfeeding, simply because Muhammad once advised it, must certainly be sold on the prophet’s constant incitements for war and conquest.

Living in an era where the Muslim world is significantly weaker than the infidel world, and so currently incapable of launching a full-on offensive, one may overlook this fact. But the intention is surely there. One need only look to how non-Muslim minorities, especially Christians, are treated in the Muslim world—where they are persecuted, kidnapped, raped and ransacked—to be sure of it.

           — Hat tip: Saxum Mons [Return to headlines]

Meat Scrap Leftovers Now Being Reprocessed Into Ice Cream: The Dismal Future of Food

(NaturalNews) There appears to be no limit to how far the processed food industry will go to maximize its profits, even if it means reprocessing animal meat waste and adding it to completely unrelated foods like ice cream. This is the latest endeavor by industrial food researchers in Italy, Belgium, and elsewhere, who are right now developing novel methods to turn meat industry leftovers into protein-rich powders and slurry for the factory food industry.

As disgusting as it sounds, unused muscle tissue, tendons, bones, and other animal byproducts are loaded with proteins and fats that typically end up in landfills. According to, up to 50 percent of the animal weight processed by the meat industry is composted, discarded, or incinerated. But modern science is hoping to basically recycle this waste and turn it back into food.

But this so-called food will not be recognizable as its own entity, at least not in the traditional sense. All those bones, meat trimmings, and poultry leftovers can effectively be converted into what the food industry has dubbed “animal protein hydrolysates.” These hydrolysates are basically liquified or powdered protein and fat blends that can be added to all sorts of other processed foods to boost their overall nutritional content.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

4 thoughts on “Gates of Vienna News Feed 6/12/2013

  1. I see the MSM,true to form, have conducted the usual smear campaign on the EDL following Tommy’s appearance on “This Morning.” However, the worst example was Dan Hodges hideously patronising piece of disinformation in the Telegraph which both smeared Tommy and attempted to justify a particularly dispicable piece of Taqiyya by that arch falsifier of facts, Mehdi Hasan. Is it ever going to get any better?

  2. Truth searches its ways ……and also against those who wish to veil truth for their grim and cruel and bitter – also to themselves – aims.

    And here for German speaking Readers of GoV some “sights barricades” breaking News in the commentary by me as “Off topic” on the lie of the two-states “solution”:

    • And here for the “Vlad-Translators” Network: A grim Socialist about a Socialst “Financial “Expert”” in Government and his “grey eminency”-Doings.

      Some Socialists are really capable of critising their PoBagsterers “doings” !


      • The fairy tale man has to do finally some thinking on his wishes concerning money “getting” – here he has, which is a typical “socialist minds black hole”.

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