Gates of Vienna News Feed 7/12/2014

Israeli special forces briefly entered the Gaza Strip tonight to disable a missile-launching facility. It was a small mission, and not part of a larger ground operation; the soldiers returned to Israel after the raid. Four Israeli soldiers were reportedly lightly wounded, and three members of Hamas were killed.

In other news, Muslim university students in Xinjiang Province in western China say that their professor forced them to take meals with him in order to ensure that they did not fast during Ramadan.

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

Thanks to Andy Bostom, C. Cantoni, Fjordman, heroyalwhyness, Insubria, JP, 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.

USA
» Chinese Businessman is Charged in Plot to Steal U.S. Military Data
» Exclusive: Holocaust Denied by Students in Rialto School Assignment
» Ramadan, Day 15: Help the Oppressor
 
Europe and the EU
» Belgian Beauty Loses Modeling Gig After Her Hunting Pic Hits the Web
» Brussels Says 2030 Deadline, 30% Reduction for Marine Litter
» EU Orders Italy and Spain to Comply With EU Fisheries Rules
» ISIS Jihadists Vow to ‘Liberate’ Spain in Spanish Language Video
» Italian Parliament to Spend 26 Million on Property Lease
» Italy: Eight Arrested for Stealing Drugs From Rome Hospital
» Italy: ILVA to Get ‘Supercommissioner’
» Northern Ireland: Can the Orange Order Keep a Lid on Twelfth Tensions?
» Reunification: Turkish Poll Sees Shift on Cyprus
» Thousands March in Cities Across Ireland in Support of Gaza
» U.S. Offered Berlin ‘Five Eyes’ Pact. Merkel Was Done With it
» UK Denies Visas for Russian Delegates to Air Show
» UK: Arrest Over Portsmouth Lone Women Attacks
» UK: Hundreds of Anti-Israeli Demonstrators Bring London Traffic to a Standstill After Scaling a Double Decker Bus as They Protest Outside Embassy Over Gaza Strikes
» UK: Home Office Defends Butler-Sloss Amid Claims of Cover-Up Over Bishop
» UK: Ramadan — The 18-Hour Fast That Keeps the Faithful Coming Back for More
» UK: Ramadan Food Collection is Underway
» UK: Sloane Rangers vs Arabs — The Battle for Chelsea
» UK: Teenager Arrested Over Alleged Mosque Threat on Facebook
» UK: What the Dickens? These Inquiries Into Historic Cases of Child Abuse Are Just Symptoms of Fear
 
North Africa
» 2 Killed in Egypt’s Pro-Morsi Protests
 
Israel and the Palestinians
» “Moderate” Fatah Also Firing Rockets
» Islamintern OIC, Which Seeks Jihad Destruction of Israel, Issues Orwellian Statement on Hamas-Instigated Gaza Fighting
» Israeli Troops Mass on Gaza Border in Preparation for Ground Attack After Airstrikes Hit Mosque ‘That Was Hiding Hamas Weapons’
» Israel Targets Gaza Mosque as Death Toll Passes 120
» Israeli Forces Carry Out Raid on Rocket Base in Gaza Strip
» Live Blog: Israel’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza
» Ramadan in Gaza: Life Under Missile-Fire
» Why Does Hamas Want War?
 
Middle East
» Bomb Attacks Kill 19 in Iraq’s Kirkuk
» Celebrating Ramadan, With a Little Help From Apple and Google
» Ferrero Buys Turkey’s Biggest Hazelnut Company
» Iraq: Gunmen Kill 25 Women in Baghdad
» Syrian Troops Sweep Into Key Eastern Suburb of Damascus
» UAE: Under the Stars: Where to Spend Your Ramadan Nights in Dubai
» UN Warns Iraq of ‘Chaos’ If No Political Progress
» Volunteers in Battle for Iraq City
 
Russia
» Donetsk Faces Ukrainian Army Onslaught, May Share Fate of Sarajevo
» Over 18,000 Refugees From Ukraine Ask for Medical Assistance — Russian Healthcare Ministry
» Ukraine Jets Pound Rebels After Deadly Missile Attack
» Ukraine Conflict: Shells Ravage Suburb of Donetsk
 
South Asia
» Afghanistan to Audit Every Vote Cast, Kerry Says
» Afghan Elections: US Pursues Talks to Help Solve Poll Dispute
» Cross-Border Attack Leaves 3 Soldiers Dead in NW Pakistan
» India: Chhattisgarh: Village Bans Non-Hindu Activities
 
Far East
» China Xinjiang: Muslim Students ‘Made to Eat’ At Ramadan
 
Australia — Pacific
» Australian Islamic Preacher Arrested in Philippines Over Alleged ISIS Links
 
Sub-Saharan Africa
» Britain Extends Travel Warning on Kenyan Coast to Include Lamu
» Crocodile Caused Congo Plan Crash in 2010
 
Latin America
» Cuba to Build First Catholic Church Since Castro
 
Immigration
» EU on Visas for Family, No Language Obligations
» EU: Balkan Citizens Make More Asylum Requests Than Syrians
» More Migrants Needed in EU to Offset Age Demographics
 

Chinese Businessman is Charged in Plot to Steal U.S. Military Data

A Chinese businessman in Canada hacked into Boeing’s computers and stole information about United States military aircraft and weapons, the Justice Department said on Friday, describing a corporate espionage case that is unusual for the huge amount of data involved.

The businessman, Su Bin, spent years taking data from Boeing, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said in court documents, and working with two unidentified contacts in China sought to sell the information to companies there.

In March, Chinese hackers broke into computers that stored the personal information of all United States government employees. In May, the Justice Department accused five Chinese officials with hacking into Westinghouse Electric, United States Steel and other companies.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Exclusive: Holocaust Denied by Students in Rialto School Assignment

Dozens of Rialto eighth-graders questioned whether the Holocaust occurred in essays written for an in-class assignment this spring.

Rialto Unified School District administrators, besieged by criticism after the assignment became public in May, claimed at the time that none of the students who completed the assignment questioned or denied the Holocaust, but a survey of the students’ work by this news organization found numerous examples of students expressing doubt or flatly denying that the Holocaust occurred.

“I believe the event was fake, according to source 2 the event was exhaggerated,” one student wrote. (Students’ and teachers’ original spelling and grammar are retained throughout this story.) “I felt that was strong enogh evidence to persuade me the event was a hoax.”

In some cases, students earned high marks and praise for arguing the Holocaust never occurred, with teachers praising their well-reasoned arguments:

“you did well using the evidence to support your claim,” the above student’s teacher wrote on his assignment.

           — Hat tip: heroyalwhyness [Return to headlines]
 

Ramadan, Day 15: Help the Oppressor

The holy month of Ramadan is a time of deep reflection for Muslims worldwide. Over the 30 days of Ramadan, Imam Sohaib Sultan of Princeton University will offer contemplative pieces on contemporary issues drawing from the wisdoms of the Qur’an — the sacred scripture that Muslims revere as the words of God and God’s final revelation to humanity…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Belgian Beauty Loses Modeling Gig After Her Hunting Pic Hits the Web

The Belgium beauty that scored a L’Oreal modeling deal after her World Cup photos went viral earlier this week has been released from her contract.

The decision comes after 17-year-old Axelle Despiegelaere sparked outrage on Facebook with a picture showing her posing with a dead oryx gazelle she had hunted in Africa, The Independent reports.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Brussels Says 2030 Deadline, 30% Reduction for Marine Litter

‘Not enough’ say environmental organizations

(ANSAmed) — BRUSSELS — The European Commission wants to reduce marine litter by 30% for 2030, but its proposal is “not enough” for environmental activists, who are asking for mandatory and more stringent measures including a narrower deadline.

“A non-binding target of 30% is not enough, and will simply allow member states to carry on as before,” says Emma Pristland of Seas At Risk, the European association of non-governmental environmental organizations including Italy’s Legambiente, involved sea protection.

Environmental organizations would like to see the Europe Commission make the proposal required for all states, while shortening its deadline and increasing waste reduction requirements to a targeted 50% reduction by 2020. “Every second, 454 pounds of trash end up in oceans and seas”, Antidia Citores of beach and ocean clean foundation Surfrider Europe said. “The European Commission made a proposal based on what it believes is feasible and measurable”, Joe Hennon, spokesman for European Commissioner for the Environment Janez Potocnik said.

“Of course, we hope that reductions will be the highest possible and we will keep the situation under control”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

EU Orders Italy and Spain to Comply With EU Fisheries Rules

2 months for management plans; infringement procedure rises

(ANSAmed) — BRUSSELS, JULY 10 — The European Commission has sent a formal request to Italy and Spain to ensure compliance with EU rules on fishing in the Mediterranean by adopting national management plans for fisheries conducted by trawl nets, boat seines, shores seines, surrounding nets and dredges within their territorial waters. Brussels has opted to send Italy a reasoned opinion, the second stage of its infringement procedure, and “in the absence of a satisfactory response within two months, the Commission may refer Italy and Spain to the Court of Justice of the European Union”.

In announcing the decision on Thursday in Brussels, the European Commission noted that the “management plans should have been adopted by 31 December 2007. Contrary to the requirements of the Regulation, Italy and Spain have still not adopted valid management plans for fisheries conducted by dredges. Required national plans are very important tools to ensure sustainable exploitation of fish resources in the Mediterranean, where traditionally the quota-based fisheries management does not apply”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

ISIS Jihadists Vow to ‘Liberate’ Spain in Spanish Language Video

The jihadist terror group Islamic State, formerly the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), has made clear their intentions to create an Islamic caliphate that extends across most of Europe and Asia. They are now further emphasizing their intention of capturing Spain, “land of our forefathers,” in a Spanish-language video…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Italian Parliament to Spend 26 Million on Property Lease

(AGI) Rome, July 11 — The Italian Chamber of Deputies will spend over 26 million euros on property leases in 2014. The total of 26,155,000 euros includes 24,830,000 for offices, 1,210,000 for storage space and 115,000 for ‘incidental expenses’. The cost of routine maintenance of buildings and equipment amounts to 13,010,000 euros.

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

Italy: Eight Arrested for Stealing Drugs From Rome Hospital

One mn euros’ worth taken at end 2012, start 2013

(ANSA) — Rome, July 11 — Italian police on Friday arrested eight people for allegedly stealing and selling drugs from Rome’s Policlinico Umberto I.

The suspected gang is accused of stealing cancer and rheumatism drugs worth one million euros at the end of 2012 and the start of 2013.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Italy: ILVA to Get ‘Supercommissioner’

Fabio Riva fraud sentence asked

(ANSA) — Rome, July 10 — ILVA is to get a super-commissioner to oversee the clean-up of its controversial and highly polluting steel plant in the Puglia port city of Taranto, political sources said Thursday.

Assets frozen in recent government and judicial moves will be freed up to help defray the “huge” cost of making the enormous plant safe for those who work there and live around it, a cabinet decree said.

The supercommissioner, who has yet to be named, will supervise “urgent environmental work” at the fume-belching works, the largest steel plant in Europe.

The government stepped in to freeze assets pending the clean-up after the judiciary ordered the plant’s closure because of unusually high cancer rates in and around Taranto.

In Taranto, Puglia’s main port, infant mortality is 21% higher than in the rest of Puglia, the Higher Health Institute said last week.

Also Thursday, prosecutors asked for Fabio Riva, son of the late head of the industrial group that owns the ILVA steelworks, Emilio Riva, to be given five years and four months in a fraud trial against him.

The former ILVA executive and ex-deputy chairman of ILVA’s parent company Riva is accused of defrauding the Italian State of 100 million of euros by illegally taking public subsidies for exports through the holding company Riva Fire.

Prosecutors also asked the court to confiscate assets worth over 91 million euros from Riva and his co-defendants in the trial. Riva is being tried in absentia pending a decision by the British authorities over extradition from London, where he currently resides. Italy’s industry ministry is suing for damages to the tune of 120 million euros in the case.

A verdict is expected on July 21.

NEW MAN TO TAKE OVER FROM GNUDI.

The new supercommissioner will take over from a former minister under ex-premier Mario Monti, Piero Gnudi, who only took over as commissioner on June 6.

Gnudi, who headed the sport and tourism ministry from November 2011 to April 2013, himself succeeded Enrico Bondi, whose term ended in June, as special commissioner to oversee management and clean-up of Europe’s largest steel mill.

The ILVA plant has drawn controversy for years over serious health concerns, culminating in a Save ILVA plan by the Monti government at the end of 2012 that set out measures to help the plant survive and preserve as many as 20,000 jobs during environmental clean-up.

Part of the Taranto plant was seized by judges to cover some of the costs of cleaning it up and meeting damage claims related to high levels of cancer in the area, which have persisted into the present.

In June prosecutors in Taranto said they are investigating concerns that carpenters working at the plant have suffered thyroid cancer.

On the same day a Taranto court found 23 former ILVA managers guilty in connection with a wave of asbestos and other carcinogen-linked deaths in the port city.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Northern Ireland: Can the Orange Order Keep a Lid on Twelfth Tensions?

Orangemen will come face-to-face with front line police officers later today — 12 months after serious rioting erupted at the same spot.

The contentious return leg of a Twelfth feeder parade in north Belfast will see marchers again stop at police lines on the Woodvale Road, preventing them from moving onto the Crumlin Road and past the Ardoyne shops…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Reunification: Turkish Poll Sees Shift on Cyprus

(ANSAmed) — NICOSIA, JULY 11 — Turkish public opinion is divided on what to do about Cyprus, with a quarter supporting “any solution” and an equal number wanting to see two separate states on the island, as Cyprus Mail reports quoting a recent poll. The survey, conducted throughout Turkey in May on behalf of the Istanbul-based think tank, Centre for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies (EDAM), asked which of the potential outcomes of the ongoing negotiations was preferred the most, with 24% saying the Cyprus issue has lasted too long and a solution should be reached “no matter what the conditions are”.

Another 26% argued “there is no need to insist for a solution”, the best option is to have two separate states on the island.

Some 18% support the formation of a new Cypriot state that will be a member of the EU, in which Greek and Turkish Cypriots will live together, while 19% support the same notion except they want full EU sovereignty over the island postponed until Turkey becomes an EU member too. EDAM notes that when the two options are aggregated, one could argue that an EU-linked solution remains the favoured outcome for 36% of Turkish public opinion.

“This result should give some encouragement to the negotiators that are currently engaged in UN-sponsored negotiations” to reach a solution at a time when the internationally-recognised Republic of Cyprus is already an EU member state, said an EDEM press release. The “two-state solution” is the clearly favoured outcome for the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) electorate in Turkey with a support of 31%, though 27% of MHP voters asked said they would agree to “any solution” regardless of the conditions. The majority from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) also favour the approach of “any solution”, representing 27% of all AKP voter respondents. The top choice for ‘Kemalist’ voters of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) is the “two-state solution” with 26%. However, 22% of CHP voters favoured the common state as an EU member solution without conditions and another 21% presented Turkey’s full membership to the EU as a precondition. This combined total of 43% in favour of an EU-linked common state solution is more than from any other political constituency.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Thousands March in Cities Across Ireland in Support of Gaza

About 22 children have been killed in Israeli air strikes

About 3,000 people protested in Dublin today against Israel’s continued bombardment of Gaza, as demonstrations also took place in Cork, Limerick, Galway, and, Derry.

The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign, which called the protest, said they had expected “between 50 and 100 people” to turn up at the Spire in O’Connell Street but so overwhelmed were they with the numbers that they decided to march, first to Leinster House and then onto the Israeli embassy in Ballsbridge…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

U.S. Offered Berlin ‘Five Eyes’ Pact. Merkel Was Done With it

U.S. Ambassador John Emerson made his way to the Foreign Ministry in Berlin armed with a plan to head off the worst diplomatic clash of Angela Merkel’s chancellorship.

Emerson came to the July 9 meeting with an offer authorized in Washington: provide Germany a U.S. intelligence-sharing agreement resembling one available only to four other nations. The goal was to assuage Merkel and prevent the expulsion of the Central Intelligence Agency’s chief of station in Berlin.

It wasn’t enough.

The same morning, across the boundary once marked by the Berlin Wall, Merkel convened her top ministers following the 9:30 a.m. Cabinet meeting on the sixth floor of the Chancellery and resolved to ask the U.S. intelligence chief to leave German soil.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

UK Denies Visas for Russian Delegates to Air Show

(AFI) London, July 12 — A large part of a Russian government delegation did not receive visas to attend the Farnborough International Airshow because of the Ukraine crisis. The air show is a prime commercial event in the aviation sector calendar and in 2012 there had also been delays in issuing visas for the Russian delegation.

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

UK: Arrest Over Portsmouth Lone Women Attacks

A man has been arrested in connection with three separate unprovoked attacks on lone women in Portsmouth.

A 20-year-old victim was assaulted on 20 June in Cosham, and a 45-year-old woman was attacked nine days later in Hilsea. Both women were stabbed in the chest. Another woman was treated in hospital after an attack in Cosham on Friday.

A man, 30, from Waterlooville, has been arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm with intent…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Hundreds of Anti-Israeli Demonstrators Bring London Traffic to a Standstill After Scaling a Double Decker Bus as They Protest Outside Embassy Over Gaza Strikes

Hundreds of anti-Israeli demonstrators brought traffic to a standstill in London today after turning out in their droves to call for an end to military strikes on Gaza.

Protesters crowded the streets outside the Israeli Embassy in Kensington High Street, west London, and some took it even further by standing on one of the city’s iconic double-decker buses.

Waving placards which read ‘Gaza: End the Siege’ and ‘Freedom for Palestine’, demonstrators chanted and blocked the road as they protested against ‘Israeli aggression’ in the Middle East…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Home Office Defends Butler-Sloss Amid Claims of Cover-Up Over Bishop

Reports claim retired judge excluded victim’s accounts of abuse by priests in review because she ‘cared about the Church’

The Home Office has again been forced to defend the appointment of Baroness Butler-Sloss to run the inquiry into allegations of historical child abuse amid claims she refused to go public about a bishop implicated in a scandal.

The retired high court judge is reported to have told a victim of alleged abuse that she did not want to include some of his allegations in a review of how the Church of England dealt with two paedophile priests because she “cared about the Church” and “the press would love a bishop”.

The peer allegedly made the remarks to Phil Johnson, who was abused by priests when he was a choirboy, during a private meeting in the House of Lords in 2011, according to The Times…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Ramadan — The 18-Hour Fast That Keeps the Faithful Coming Back for More

By Zoe Williams

For Muslims, the annual ritual is more than a spiritual 5:2 diet — it’s a unifying way to take stock of how they are living

‘It was really busy last year. It might be a bit less so this year. I think it’s the World Cup.” Fatima showed me the women’s prayer room of the Harrow Central Mosque, a massive building, nine years in the making. Its domed room at the top has a scaffold tower in the middle, the last trace of building work…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Ramadan Food Collection is Underway

Muslim groups are holding a food drive to mark the holy month of Ramadan. In Leicester, the Islamic Society of Britain (ISB) charity, the Madani Schools Federation and the Federation of Muslim Organisations are arranging the collection…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Sloane Rangers vs Arabs — The Battle for Chelsea

By Camilla Swift

On one side: old affluence. On the other: shiny new supercars

Perhaps you’re aware that it’s Ramadan right now, the month in which all good Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, smoking and sex during daylight. What you might not know is that Ramadan also marks the start of an annual turf war in London; a battle between the tribal Sloanes and the young Gulf Arabs to dominate Chelsea…

[Reader comment by Alice Boxstrom on 12 July 2014.]

One if by land, two if by sea. Keep the fires burning:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0094KY878?tag=viglink20671-20

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Teenager Arrested Over Alleged Mosque Threat on Facebook

A TEENAGER has been arrested after allegedly posting a racist threat against a mosque on Facebook.

Leon Richmond, aged 18, from Smithills, is alleged to have made an “offensive” comment about the proposed new mosque in Blackburn Road, Astley Bridge, on a Facebook page. He has been bailed by police, who have warned that more arrests will follow…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UK: What the Dickens? These Inquiries Into Historic Cases of Child Abuse Are Just Symptoms of Fear

by Charles Moore

Those who govern us are desperate to halt the mood of cynicism that is setting in

Here are some things we do not know about the “historic” child abuse accusations that are causing such concern.

We do not know who was accused by the late Geoffrey Dickens MP. We do not know for certain if anyone Dickens accused in private was a public figure. Except in the case of the named accusations he made in the House of Commons under parliamentary privilege, we do not know what he accused anyone of. We do not know whether the accusations he made were already known to police by other means, and therefore added nothing. Nor do we know what happened to whatever he passed to Leon Brittan and subsequent Home Secretaries in the 1980s…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

2 Killed in Egypt’s Pro-Morsi Protests

CAIRO, July 11 (Xinhua) — Two people were killed and three others injured on Friday during clashes between security forces and protesters who support ousted former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in the capital Cairo, a Health Ministry official told Xinhua…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

“Moderate” Fatah Also Firing Rockets

by Khaled Abu Toameh

Fatah has several hundred militiamen in the Gaza Strip, some of whom are members of the Palestinian Authority security forces, who continue to receive their salaries from Western governments.

At least two Fatah armed groups announced that they had started firing rockets at the “settlements” of Ashkelon and Sderot, cities inside the pre-1967 borders of Israel, with another Fatah group claiming responsibility for firing 35 rockets into Israel since Sunday.

So far as Abbas is concerned, “it all started when Israel fired back” in response to hundred of rockets fired at Israel from the Gaza Strip during the last few days. He seems concerned that if the world hears about the role of Fatah in the rocket attacks, the news will affect Western financial aid to the Palestinian Authority, which dominated by Fatah.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Islamintern OIC, Which Seeks Jihad Destruction of Israel, Issues Orwellian Statement on Hamas-Instigated Gaza Fighting

I won’t dignify the repellant, egregiously counterfactual “Final Communique” of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation—Sharia supremacist avatar of the Islamintern, and largest voting block in the U.N.—which purports to examine the ongoing Hamas-instigated conflagration in Gaza and Israel, by extracting its contents.

This Orwellian statement, “Final Communique Expanded Extraordinary Meeting Of The Executive Committee At A Foreign Ministers Level On The Grave Situation In The Occupied State Of Palestine Including Al-Quds Al- Sharif,” issued July 10, 2014, can be read in its entirety here.

Prior to re-casting itself as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, when it was dubbed the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), the OIC’s intentions vis-à-vis Israel were pellucid: this ecumenical bloc of Sharia-supremacist states sought the jihad destruction of Israel.

That remains the OIC’s goal, a jihad, as the 1981 formulation of this genocidal intent proclaimed, “that all Islamic States must wage, each according to its means”.

Extracted from my 2008, The Legacy of Islamic Antisemitism (p. 55) are two candid expressions of the OIC’s self-proclaimed mission of “liberation”—i.e., genocide, 22-years apart from 1981, and 2003, in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, and Putrajaya, Malaysia.

From the Mecca Islamic Summit Conference, 1981:…

           — Hat tip: Andy Bostom [Return to headlines]
 

Israeli Troops Mass on Gaza Border in Preparation for Ground Attack After Airstrikes Hit Mosque ‘That Was Hiding Hamas Weapons’

Israel was today massing its troops on the Gaza border in preparation for a possible ground attack — just hours after its airforce struck a mosque that was allegedly being used to hide Hamas’s weapons.

Donning military gear and carrying rifles, thousands of soldiers moved into a new position on the border on the fifth day of the deadly conflict, which has so far claimed the lives of more than 120 people.

They were spotted transporting armoured vehicles along the border, before setting up and firing shells towards members of the militant group Hamas.

The latest move is in preparation for a potential ground offensive, with some 33,000 reservists mobilised out of 40,000 approved by Israel’s cabinet…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Israel Targets Gaza Mosque as Death Toll Passes 120

Israel’s aerial bombardment of Gaza continued for a fifth day on Saturday with a strike on a mosque said to be concealing a weapons cache one of the dozens of targets bombed, as the death toll in the coastal strip rose to 122.

Military spokesman Moti Almoz said Israel would press ahead with its air campaign for the “next 24 hours” and that there were “many” targets left. He told Israel Radio the Army was also preparing for the “next stages” of Operation Protective Edge — a potential ground offensive…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Israeli Forces Carry Out Raid on Rocket Base in Gaza Strip

GAZA CITY — The Israeli military said Sunday that four soldiers were lightly wounded in fighting in northern Gaza.

The military said the soldiers were hurt during a brief incursion to destroy a rocket launching site and that the troops had returned to Israeli territory.

It is the first time that Israeli ground troops are known to have entered Gaza in the current offensive. The operation was carried out by special forces and did not appear to be the beginning of a broad ground offensive.

The raid occurred in the al-Sudaniya beach area in the northwest Gaza Strip, Haaretz reported on its Web site. It said that the Israeli force encountered Palestinian gunmen and a battle ensued which included the use of heavy arms. The Israeli newspaper reported that Palestinian sources said three fighters from the armed Islamist movement Hamas were killed.

The Israeli military said the raid targeted a compound from which long-range rockets were being fired, Haaretz reported. Four soldiers were lightly wounded in the raid and were taken to hospitals for treatment.

[Return to headlines]
 

Live Blog: Israel’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza

Follow all the latest updates on Israel’s efforts to extinguish rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.

Saturday, July 12

3:55 p.m. Rocket sirens sound in Beersheba.

3:45 p.m. Report: Two of Hamas Prime Minister Ismael Haniyeh’s nephews killed by IAF strike on home that belonged to his sister.

3:25 p.m. Rocket sirens sound in the western Negev…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Ramadan in Gaza: Life Under Missile-Fire

By Peter Beaumont

More than 100 have died — often women and children in their own homes — and food prices are rising fast as supplies dry up

In Gaza’s largely deserted streets, the first thing you notice is the absence of children.

The beach, usually crowded on Friday afternoons, is empty save for a handful of fishermen casting hand nets into the surf next to the harbour wall…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Why Does Hamas Want War?

by Daniel Pipes

Politicians start wars optimistic about their prospects of gaining from combat, Geoffrey Blainey notes in his masterly study, The Causes of War; otherwise, they would avoid fighting.

Why, then, did Hamas just provoke a war with Israel? Out of nowhere, on June 11 it began launching rockets, shattering a calm in place since November 2012. The mystery of this outburst prompted David Horovitz, editor of the Times of Israel, to find that the current fighting has “no remotely credible reason” even to be taking place. And why did the Israeli leadership respond minimally, trying to avoid combat? This although both sides know that Israel’s forces vastly out-match Hamas’ in every domain — intelligence gathering, command and control, technology, firepower, domination of air space.

What explains this role reversal? Are Islamists so fanatical that they don’t mind losing? Are Zionists too worried about loss of life to fight?

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Bomb Attacks Kill 19 in Iraq’s Kirkuk

KIRKUK, July 11 (Xinhua) — At least 19 people were killed and 28 wounded in twin bomb explosions in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk on Friday, a police source said.

A suicide car bomber blew himself at a checkpoint in Wahid Huzairan area of southern Kirkuk, killing 18 people, including six members of the Kurdish security forces and 12 displaced civilians from Tikrit and other militant-controlled cities. The blast also injured 25 others, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

In a separate incident, a suicide car bomber attacked a checkpoint in the area of Khaled, 25 km southwest of Kirkuk, killing one member of the Kurdish security forces and wounding three others…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Celebrating Ramadan, With a Little Help From Apple and Google

Smartphones are everywhere and so is Google, Apple and to some extent BlackBerry and Windows.

This Ramadan, tech giants have come out in full force to help you observe the holy month of Ramadan…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Ferrero Buys Turkey’s Biggest Hazelnut Company

(ANSAmed) — ISTANBUL, JULY 8 — Italian confectionary giant Ferrero has bought Turkey’s largest hazelnut company, IBT online reports quoting Turkish media. The Nutella makers purchased Oltan Gida in a move that could shake up the global chocolate and hazelnut sectors, according to a report in Turkish daily Dunya. The Turkish company had not commented yet on the reports of the sale and the local press did not report the price that Ferrero paid.

Oltan Gida accounts for around a third of Turkey’s hazelnut production and exports its products to the European Union as well as the United States, China, Japan and Australia. Its annual turnover is more than 368 million euros according to the company’s website.

Oltan Gida was named the 55th largest industrial institution in the Istanbul Chamber of Industry’s top 500 list, according to Turkish newspaper Hurriyet. It has a total of five nut-cracking plants in Turkey, a kernel selection plant and an integrated hazelnut processing plant. The Italian confectionery group has already invested heavily in Turkey, opening its latest plant Manisa in 2013 with an investment of around 140 million euros.

Its brands include Nutella, Kinder and Ferrero Rocher and its products make use of Turkish hazelnuts.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Iraq: Gunmen Kill 25 Women in Baghdad

Gunmen killed 25 women and wounded at least eight people Saturday when they stormed two buildings in a residential Baghdad compound reputed to be used for prostitution, police and government sources said. “Twenty-five women were killed and eight people wounded, among them four men, when gunmen stormed two buildings in a residential compound in Zayouna in east Baghdad,” an interior ministry official said to AFP.

A senior police officer gave the same death toll but reported 11 wounded.

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Syrian Troops Sweep Into Key Eastern Suburb of Damascus

DAMASCUS, July 12 (Xinhua) — The Syrian army has advanced in a key suburb east of the capital Damascus, completely besieging more than 400 rebel fighters in that key area, whose recapture would largely contribute to enhancing the security situation in the capital, a senior military source told Xinhua Saturday…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UAE: Under the Stars: Where to Spend Your Ramadan Nights in Dubai

Guaranteed Dubai has it all. The largest Ramadan tents, the most lavish spreads, entertainment galore and of course the biggest lifestyle brands to blend in with the glamor. With desirability parked around every corner we introduce you to a few favorites you should try.

Every place has its charm, but regardless of what brand of fruit they are serving, the main concern will always be the food on the table…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

UN Warns Iraq of ‘Chaos’ If No Political Progress

The U.N. urged Iraq’s leaders Saturday to overcome their deep divisions and move quickly to form a new government that can unite the country and confront a surging militant threat, warning that failure to do so “risks plunging the country into chaos.”

The Sunni insurgent blitz over the past month has driven Iraq into its deepest crisis since the last American troops left in 2011, pushing bloodshed to levels unseen since the height of the Iraq war, sending Sunni-Shiite tensions soaring and raising the specter of a nation cleaved in three along ethnic and sectarian lines.

Iraq’s new parliament is scheduled on Sunday to hold its second session amid hopes that lawmakers can quickly decide on a new prime minister, president and speaker of parliament — the first steps toward forming a new government. It failed to make any progress in its first session, and postponed its second session until Sunday.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

Volunteers in Battle for Iraq City

Some 4,000 Iraqi volunteers are being airlifted to an embattled city west of Baghdad to help bolster government forces locked in a running battle with Sunni militants there.

Around 2,500 of the volunteers arrived in Ramadi, 115 kilometres (70 miles) west of the capital, on Friday and are to be joined by the remaining 1,500 on Saturday, said Gen Rasheed Flayeh, the commander of operations in Anbar province.

The men are being ferried out to Ramadi from Baghdad by helicopter, Flayeh said…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Donetsk Faces Ukrainian Army Onslaught, May Share Fate of Sarajevo

The Ukrainian army onslaught in the eastern regions of the country forced the anti-government militia to fall back to the regional capital Donetsk. They vow to defend the city to the last man. If Ukrainian forces decide to storm Donetsk, the city with the population of one million may be razed to the ground, becoming a new Sarajevo…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Over 18,000 Refugees From Ukraine Ask for Medical Assistance — Russian Healthcare Ministry

An official from Russia’s health Ministry says medical assistance is rendered to everyone irrespective their legal status

MOSCOW, July 11. /ITAR-TASS/. Over 18,000 Ukrainian refugees, who are currently in Russia’s territory, have asked for medical assistance, Russia’s Healthcare Ministry said…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Ukraine Jets Pound Rebels After Deadly Missile Attack

(Reuters) — Ukrainian war planes bombarded separatists along a broad front on Saturday, inflicting huge losses, Kiev said, after President Petro Poroshenko said “scores and hundreds” would be made to pay for a deadly missile attack on Ukrainian forces…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Ukraine Conflict: Shells Ravage Suburb of Donetsk

A suburb of the rebel-held Ukrainian city of Donetsk has come under heavy bombardment, a day after the army suffered some of its heaviest losses.

Apartment blocks were hit as shelling continued through the night and into Saturday in Marinka, west of the city. Pro-Russian rebels said 30 civilians had died in government shelling while the government reportedly accused the rebels of shelling Marinka themselves…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Afghanistan to Audit Every Vote Cast, Kerry Says

Afghanistan will conduct an audit of the entire eight million votes cast in a runoff vote for the recent presidential election, Secretary of State John Kerry announced on Saturday, a deal he brokered to resolve a tense power struggle between the top two presidential candidates over widespread vote fraud.

The audit will be the largest and most comprehensive possible, Mr. Kerry said at a news conference in Kabul. “Every single ballot that was cast will be audited,” he said. “All eight million of them.”

[Return to headlines]
 

Afghan Elections: US Pursues Talks to Help Solve Poll Dispute

US Secretary of State John Kerry is holding a second day of talks in Afghanistan to try to end a row over the result of the presidential poll.

Mr Kerry is meeting candidates Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah, who accuse each other of electoral fraud, at the US compound in the capital, Kabul. Mr Ghani, the winner of preliminary results in the second round, has backed an “extensive audit” of votes…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Cross-Border Attack Leaves 3 Soldiers Dead in NW Pakistan

ISLAMABAD, July 12 (Xinhua) — At least three soldiers were killed and two others injured in a cross-border attack from Afghanistan’s Kunar province into Pakistani tribal area of Bajaur Agency in the wee hours of Saturday morning, local media reported.

Samaa TV said that an unknown number of gunmen coming from Afghanistan opened fire at a security check post located in Mamoond town of Bajaur Agency, a volatile tribal area near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

India: Chhattisgarh: Village Bans Non-Hindu Activities

Local council in Belar bans all non-Hindu religious activities. For GCIC President, India is a secular state and must ensure “respect for human rights,” including freedom of worship. He also calls for an end to discriminatory rules in matters of faith.

Mumbai (AsiaNews) — India’s supreme status as a secular state, which is to guarantee freedom of worship across the country, has been violated once more, said in a statement Christian activist Sajan K George

Mr George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), spoke after another village, in Bastar District in the central state of Chhattisgarh, banned religious activities that “do not belong to the Hindu tradition”. In thiscase of anti-minority abuse, the local council (gram sabha) in the village of Belar, Lohandiguda, approved on Sunday a resolution banning non-Hindu rituals, cults and practices.

In fact, systematic attacks on minorities have been occurring for many years in South Asian nation. Increasingly, non-Hindus have seen their right to free worship reduced.

On 10 May, the village council of Sirisguda, in Tongpal, banned non-Hindu missionaries. The measure was adopted to “stop forced conversions” perpetrated by some “foreign activists” who use “defamatory language” against “Hindu deities and traditions,” the statement said.

Similarly, on 16 June, in another district of Chhattisgarh, a group of Christian families was targeted and beaten by Hindu fundamentalists.

A few days later, on 26 June, the council of more than 35 villages in the mostly tribal district of Bastar (Chhattisgarh) banned entry to not Hindus to prevent them from “damaging” the culture and religion of the community.

Speaking to AsiaNews, Sajan K George said that India is a “secular state” and is party to the United Nations Convention on Civil and Political Rights, which it has ratified.

Hence, on behalf of the members of GCIC, the Christian activist called for urgent action against discriminatory rules in order to ensure respect for the constitution and guarantee everyone’s right “to the free practice of religion.”

For several years, the State of Chhattisgarh has had a so-called ‘anti-conversion law’ (Chhattisgarh Religion Freedom Act of 2006).

Under its terms, would-be converts are required to inform a district magistrate a month in advance of their decision to change religion. The latter in turn has the power to give or withhold permission to convert.

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

China Xinjiang: Muslim Students ‘Made to Eat’ At Ramadan

Several university students from China’s western region of Xinjiang have told the BBC that they are being banned from fasting during the month of Ramadan.

The three Muslim students we spoke to the BBC did not want their identities revealed as they fear government reprisals for speaking about a sensitive issue. But they told us they were being forced to have meals with professors to ensure they were not fasting…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Australian Islamic Preacher Arrested in Philippines Over Alleged ISIS Links

Melbourne-native Robert Cerantonio accused of recruiting fighters as government lists Isis as terrorist organisation

An Australian Islamic preacher suspected of rallying support for Isis militants in Syria has been arrested in the Philippines, where he has been preaching radical Islam and recruiting militants since February, according to Australian police…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Britain Extends Travel Warning on Kenyan Coast to Include Lamu

Updated travel advisory follows series of attacks on north Kenyan coast

British tourists should avoid all but essential travel to Kenya’s popular tourist destination of Lamu and the surrounding area, the Foreign Office said in an update to its travel advice.

More than 80 people have been killed in a series of attacks over the past four weeks that have terrorised the population on the mainland opposite the Lamu archipelago…

           — Hat tip: JP [Return to headlines]
 

Crocodile Caused Congo Plan Crash in 2010

(AGI) London, July 12 — It was almost surely a crocodile, illegally brought on board in a suitcase and that got loose during the flight, the cause of a plane crash in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2010. This is the result of an inquiry into the accident that occurred four years ago and in which 19 people were killed, including the British pilot Chris Wilson.

Reports by the only survivor travelling on the flight from the capital Kinshasa to Bandundu and evidence like the video shot during rescue operations indicate that the reptile was the most likely cause of the crash.

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

Cuba to Build First Catholic Church Since Castro

(AGI) Vatican City, July 12 — The Catholic church will build its first church in Cuba 55 years after Castro’s 1959 revolution, the Vatican newspaper Osservatore Romano announced on Saturday. The location chosen is the town of Sandino, in the province of Pinar del Rio. Sandino is one of the “pueblos cautivos” (“captive towns”) created by the Communist regime in order to forcefully deport thousands of families from their birthplaces after they participated in the peasant uprisings in the Escambray mountain range at the beginning of the ‘60s, reported the EnOriente.com website.

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

EU on Visas for Family, No Language Obligations

Germany’s request for Turkish spouses to speak German illegal

(ANSAmed) — BRUSSELS, JULY 10 — Germany’s request for spouses to have a basic knowledge of German in order to be granted a visa and join Turkish family on its territory goes against EU legislation, the Court of Justice ruled on Thursday in the case of a Turkish woman who wants to reunite with her husband. Since 2007, Germany has required spouses of foreign residents to have a basic knowledge of German in order to be granted a visa. The measure was aimed at countering forced marriages and favoring integration but “goes beyond what is necessary to reach the objective pursued”, since the lack of proof of sufficient linguistic knowledge automatically leads to the rejection of an application to join a family member, without taking into account specific circumstances, the Court said.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

EU: Balkan Citizens Make More Asylum Requests Than Syrians

Malmstroem fears members may ask stop to visa-free Schengen area

(ANSAmed) — BRUSSELS, JULY 7 — The European Union received more asylum requests in 2013 from citizens of six western Balkan countries than from people fleeing Syria, the European Asylum Report Office (EASO) said Monday. EASO reported that together citizens from Serbia, Kosovo, the ex-Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina together accounted for 72,840 asylum requests to the EU-28, or 17%, compared to 50,495 requests made by Syrians. The vast majority of asylum requests in the EU-28 were deemed unfounded. The average acceptance rate was a very low 3.8%, except for Italy, where the rate of acceptance was 46%. The European Commissioner for Internal Affairs, Cecilia Malmstroem, said the discrepancy amounts to “a serious problem” that could cause the most affected member states to activate a “safeguard clause” eliminating visa-free travel in the Schengen area. Serbs, Macedonians, Montenegrins and Bosnians have aimed in particular for Germany, while Albanians have gone to France and the United Kingdom. Maelstrom said she continues to be in contact with the western Balkan countries to see how better to help and work with them, in order to give them better information and prevent abuses to the system of visa liberalization. The commissioner said there were good campaigns and cooperation, but unfortunately insufficient results.

The majority of the asylum requests to EU countries last year arrived from Serbs — more than 20,000 — followed by Kosovars, Macedonians, Albanians, Bosnians and Montenegrins. The Serb and Macedonian migrants were mainly of the Rom ethnicity, while the Kosovars and Albanians were primarily ethnic Albanians.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

More Migrants Needed in EU to Offset Age Demographics

The EU needs migrants to offset future age demographic disparities, according to an EU-funded research paper released on Friday. Without migration in the EU, the number of people over 65 are set to increase by 32 million by 2030 while those under 40 are set to drop by 31 million.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]
 

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