Gates of Vienna News Feed 10/1/2014

The first American case of Ebola exposed several schoolchildren in Dallas to possible infection with the disease. Although the authorities stress that there is no evidence that any of them have actually been infected, a number of parents have pulled their children from those schools.

In other news, pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong warn that they will occupy buildings if the authorities do not take action on their demands.

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

Thanks to C. Cantoni, Fjordman, Insubria, Jerry Gordon, LS, RR, 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
» French Finance Minister Says No More Austerity
» Greece Already in Full Electoral Campaign Mode
» Italy: Renzi Govt Admits 2014 Will be Year of Recession
» Merkel Says EU Countries ‘Must Fulfill Their Obligations’
» Author: American Whitewashing of Islamic Supremacism Parallels WWII-Era Communist Coddling
» Dallas Parents Fearing Ebola Remove Children From School
» Diana West at National Security Action Summit: ‘Sharia Outlaws the Liberties We in the West Hold Sacred’
» Fiat Chrysler Sales in the U.S. Rose 19% in September
» First Ebola Case Diagnosed in the US
» Islamist Watch Launches ‘Islamist Money in Politics’
» Oklahoma Beheading Raises Questions About Prison Conversions and American Muslim Leadership: An Interview With Dr. Michael Welner
» Secret Service Director to Resign
» Secret Service Director Resigns
» Tom and Jerry Cartoons Carry Racism Warning
» Whitewashing Communism Plus Whitewashing Islam Equals Curtains for the West
» Canadian PM Says British Explorer Ship Lost Nearly 170 Years Ago is HMS Erebus
Europe and the EU
» Don’t Exaggerate Military Uniform Ban, Says Dutch Army Chief
» European Antitrust Says Apple Tax Benefits Breach EU Law
» Food Aid for Spaniards Only
» France: Class Action Lawsuits Become Legal, First Ready
» France: Woman: 76, Raped ‘For Telling Youths to be Quiet’
» Gas Leak Brings Chaos to Norwegian Town
» Greenland Government Rocked by Scandal
» Italy: ‘Every Time D’Alema Talks, I Win Points’ Says Renzi
» Italy’s SME Manufacturing Index Rises
» Italy: Slow Food Welcomes EU Infraction Proceedings Against UK
» Law Extending Italy’s Missions Abroad Approved
» Profile: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg
» Sweden’s ‘Most Dangerous Art’ On Sale
» UK: Anjem Choudary, In His Own Words
» Why Norway is the Best Place in the World to Grow Old
North Africa
» Death in Benghazi, Part 3: The Web of Deception; An Interview With Ken Timmerman
» Former Acting CIA Director Denies Iranian Involvement in Benghazi
» Libyan Refugees Denounced as ‘Rich and Rude’ In Tunisia
Middle East
» Follow a #Pilgrim on Their #Hajj to #Mecca
» Group Trying to Get Young Women to Travel to Iraq and Syria
» ISIS Beheads 9 Kurdish Fighters Captured in Syria
» Islamic State ‘Adapting to US-Led Air Strikes’
» Kuwait: MPs Blast Ashour’s Call to Scrap Sharia College — Opposition Says Revoking Citizenship Against Int’l Law
» Teenage Girls Recall Horrors of ISIS Captivity
» The Case Against Qatar
» The Real Threat
» The War Against ISIS, Syrian Opposition and Middle East Christians: A Discussion With M. Zuhdi Jasser, Walid Phares, John Hajjar
» Putin Plans New Measures to ‘Protect’ Internet
» Ukraine Crisis: Shell Hits Donetsk School Playground
South Asia
» Seven Dead and Six Wounded in Kabul Taliban Attack
» The Road to Bamiyan: A Public Works Debacle That Defines Afghanistan
Far East
» Hong Kong: The “Umbrella Revolution”: Students Turn Their Backs on Flag Raising for China’s National Day
» Hong Kong Protesters Threaten to Occupy Buildings
» Scores of Mainland Supporters of Democracy in Hong Kong Arrested
» Things That Could Only Happen in a Hong Kong Protest
Australia — Pacific
» Tony Abbott Brushes Off Row Over ‘Confronting’ Burka
Latin America
» The First South Americans: Extreme Living
» 200 Sub-Saharan Migrants Try to Storm Melilla, Pushed Back
» Avramopoulos Says No to Europe as a Fortress
» EU Embassies Should Take Asylum Requests, New Commissioner Says
» Pope Francis Urges Europe to Open Doors to Refugees

French Finance Minister Says No More Austerity

Confirms deficit-to-GDP ratio to rise above EU 3% limit

(ANSA) — Paris, October 1 — France will reduce its budget deficit two years later than previously forecast, the country’s finance minister warned Wednesday.

Finance Minister Michel Sapin said the government will not reduce its deficit to meet the 3% deficit-to-gross domestic product (GDP) limit set by the European Union until 2017.

That’s because France will not take the kind of austerity measures needed to speed up deficit reduction, Sapin said as he discussed the 2015 budget at a news conference.

“We will not ask for further efforts from the French,” said Sapin.

“The government understands the seriousness of the budget but rejects austerity,” he said.

Economic growth in France is forecast to be very weak, a common problem across parts of Europe including Italy, which is in its third deficit since 2008.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Greece Already in Full Electoral Campaign Mode

Ahead of an increasingly likely early national vote

(ANSAmed) — ATHENS, SEPTEMBER 30 — The presence of the troika (IMF, EU and ECB) in Athens is proof that Greece is not a not a normal country just yet. Important steps have been taken in this direction but the demands of the representatives of international creditors are difficult to satisfy as they could lead to an accident down the road to recovery which could compromise much of what has been done so far with great difficulty.

The coalition government led by Antonis Samaras is perfectly aware of the fact that there is no majority in Parliament willing to approve new austerity measures and is working to get rid of the troika and IMF, dissolving over a year earlier than scheduled the agreement and giving up on the last installment worth 10 billuon euros originally scheduled for 2015.

In other words, Greece is now ready to hit international financial markets and leave the crisis behind. It is still to be seen whether the political system will be able to carry out the operation successfully given that, two years before the end of the legislature, the country is already in the midst of an electoral campaign: the failure to elect a new president of the Republic (the mandate of Karolos Papulias expires on February 12) could in fact lead to early elections.

The two parties supporting the government — the center-right Nea Dimokratia (Nd) and Socialist Pasok — must deal with “rebels” in their midst who have opposed policies so far and threaten they will not vote more measures hitting incomes and pensions, while some in the majority are threatening not to vote for the president in order to force the government to change policies.

Premier Samaras, the leader of Nd, has sought to mobilize old and new leaders and militants from the party with a harsh attack on Syriza and its leader Alexis Tsipras (without ever naming him) and announcing a number of tax cuts. Among them are tax cuts for firms and independent professionals — to 20% from 26% — a reduction on luxury car taxes by 30% and another 30% cut next year in the solidarity tax imposed with the crisis.

Local media believe the proposals are only a prelude to early elections.

Pasok on the other hand, the party that governed Greece for over 20 years, is dealing with internal rifts over complaints from deputies and recriminations by others.

Radical left party Syriza, which obtained the relative majority in Greece according in a European vote in June, is gearing up for a big campaign to explain to the people, according to a statement, the “need for a radical change” and an “alternative policy”.

The campaign will develop around two fronts: in Parliament with the presentation of a number of legislative initiatives to cut taxes for social classes most affected by the crisis, and in the country with a number of regional conferences on Syriza’s government program.

Along with these initiatives — aimed at “toppling the dangerous government of Samaras and his policies” -Tsipras’ international campaign will be aimed at forging alliances against austerity policies so far pursued by the EU and cultivating his new profile as a staunch pro-European leader.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Renzi Govt Admits 2014 Will be Year of Recession

Executive says won’t balance budget until 2017

(ANSA) — Rome, October 1 — Premier Matteo Renzi’s government has admitted that 2014 will be a year of recession and said it will not be able to balance the budget in structural terms until 2017, one year later than its previous target.

The executive stressed, however, that it will not breach the European Union’s deficit-to-GDP-ratio threshold of 3% despite the difficult economic climate in a statement revising the forecasts presented earlier this year in its three-year economic blueprint, the Economic and Financial Document (DEF).

In the first half of this year, Italy unexpected slipped into its third recession since the start of the global economic crisis in 2008. Economy Minister Pier Carlo Padoan said Italy’s gross domestic product would be down 0.3% this year, after the government forecast growth of 0.8% in April.

The statement added that the economy should recover in 2015 and grow by 0.6%.

The statement said the deficit-to-GDP ratio will be bang on the 3% threshold, compared to its April forecast of 2.6%, and will then edge down to 2.9% in 2015. Italy’s debt-to-GDP ratio will be 131.6% this year and will grow to 133.4% next year, it said.

The government expects Italy’s unemployment rate to be 12.6% in 2014 and 12.5% in 2015.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Merkel Says EU Countries ‘Must Fulfill Their Obligations’

Germany warns deficit reduction important to credibility

(ANSA) — Berlin, October 1 — German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Wednesday that countries must “fulfill their obligations” under the European Union’s budget stability pact because the economic crisis is not over.

“We are not yet at the point where we can say that the crisis is behind us,” Merkel said after the Italian government warned Tuesday that it had revised forecasts in its economic blueprint and said it will not balance the budget in structural terms until 2017.

On Wednesday, France also said that it would not reduce its budget deficit until 2017, two years later than forecast, and that it would not intensify austerity measures to speed the deficit-reduction process.

Merkel said that the credibility of the EU was at stake.

“Countries must fulfill their obligations for the welfare of all,” she said, reminding member states that the title of the EU’s Stability and Growth Pact was a reminder of the necessity for sound and stable finances to encourage economic growth.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Author: American Whitewashing of Islamic Supremacism Parallels WWII-Era Communist Coddling

Author Diana West delivered an address at the Center for Security Policy’s National Security Action Summit, the core assertion of which has been largely ignored in the media and academia since Sept. 11, 2001.

West argued, consistent with her bombshell “American Betrayal,” that America’s whitewashing of Islamic supremacism — reflected in George W. Bush’s calling Islam a “religion of peace” in the aftermath of Sept. 11, the Obama administration line that the Islamic State “is not Islamic” and the official public separation of Islam from jihad and sharia law — parallels what occurred during and after World War II in America’s treatment of Communism and the Soviet Union.

[Return to headlines]

Dallas Parents Fearing Ebola Remove Children From School

Parents on Wednesday were removing their children from a Dallas school where a student may have had contact with the Ebola patient diagnosed Tuesday.

A letter to parents of children at L.L. Hotchkiss Elementary School, 6929 Town North Drive, says in part:

“This morning, we were made aware that one of our students may have had contact with an individual who was recently diagnosed with the Ebola virus. This student is currently not showing any symptoms and is under close observation by the Dallas County Health and Human Services Department. As a precautionary measure, the student has been advised to stay home from school. Since this student is not presenting any symptoms, there is nothing to suggest that the disease was spread to others, including students and staff.”

At a news conference at noon Wednesday, Dallas Independent School District Superintendent Mike Miles said students attending four different Dallas Independent School District schools possibly have been exposed to the Ebola virus.

He said the district was informed the five students were in contact with the Ebola patient over the weekend. They have been in school since, but are now at home and likely will be kept there for 21 days.

Dallas County is working with the Centers for Disease Control to have “boots on the ground” to monitor those who might have been exposed, officials said.

WFAA’s Sebastian Robertson is reporting that concerned parents are picking up their children from the school where one of the students may have attended.

The Ebola patient was visiting a neighborhood where 33 languages are spoken, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said…

[Return to headlines]

Diana West at National Security Action Summit: ‘Sharia Outlaws the Liberties We in the West Hold Sacred’

For anyone still puzzled as how it could be that our leaders and pundits keep hammering home the big lie that Islam has nothing to do with jihad, that the religion of conquest is a “religion of peace,” it’s important to know that such widespread brainwashing is nothing new.

Just as today’s opinion-makers seek to divorce Islam from its impact — brutal conquest, forced conversion, religiously sanctioned sex slavery, beheadings — past opinion-makers worked equally hard to divorce Communism from its impact — brutal conquest, forced collectivization, concentration camps (Gulags), mass murder.

It worked. Unlike Nazism, Communism has never been judged guilty or even held responsible for the carnage and suffering it has caused. On the contrary, it remains a source of “liberal” statist ideas such as Obamacare. My recent book American Betrayal delves deeply into this dangerous double standard. In short, this double standard not only enables collectivist policies to strangle our remnant republic, but also explains why American students can find a drink called Leninade, emblazoned with a hammer and sickle, for sale up the road at University of Maryland. It’s also why silkscreens of Warhol’s Chairman Mao, history’s top mass murderer, are sought-after items for the homes of the wealthy…

[Return to headlines]

Fiat Chrysler Sales in the U.S. Rose 19% in September

Best September results for automaker since 2005

(ANSA) — New York, October 1 — Sales by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles in the United States rose by 19% in September to 169,890 vehicles compared to 143,017 during the same month last year, the company announced Wednesday. The results marked the 54th consecutive month of growth for Chrysler and the best September since 2005. The increase exceeded analyst expectations of a 16% increase.

September sales for the Jeep and Ram Truck brands soared 47% and 35%, respectively, compared to the same month in 2013.

Turnover for the popular Fiat 500 model rose 29% over the same period.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

First Ebola Case Diagnosed in the US

The first case of the deadly Ebola virus diagnosed on US soil has been confirmed in Dallas, Texas. Officials at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital say the unidentified patient is being kept in isolation. The man is thought to have contracted the virus in Liberia before travelling to the US nearly two weeks ago.

More than 3,000 people have already died of Ebola in West Africa and a small number of US aid workers have recovered after being flown to the US.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Islamist Watch Launches ‘Islamist Money in Politics’

Philadelphia — October 1, 2014 — Prominent Islamists in the United States have donated almost $700,000 to federal candidates over the past 15 years, according to a new initiative of the Middle East Forum’s Islamist Watch project.

Islamist Money in Politics (IMIP) shines a light on Islamist political influence in the United States by making public the campaign contributions of leading figures in six of America’s most important Islamist groups. IMIP compiles such donations into a sortable database, holding politicians accountable for accepting funds from sources linked to such organizations as the Muslim Brotherhood — which explicitly sees its work in America as “a kind of grand jihad to eliminate and destroy Western civilization from within.”

Associates of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), national and local, lead the way, giving candidates for federal office over $430,000. The group was named an “unindicted co-conspirator” in America’s largest terror financing case where a federal judge found “ample evidence” of CAIR’s link to Hamas; also, “the FBI does not view CAIR as an appropriate liaison partner,” and recent court documents found the group concealing foreign donations through shell organizations.

Donations were also analyzed from associates of: Islamic Circle of North America, Islamic Society of North America, Muslim Alliance in North America, Muslim American Society and Muslim Public Affairs Council.

The database currently covers only federal contributions. State-level data will be added over time. Further, it is limited to individuals with formal and senior roles at six Islamist organizations. For these reasons, IMIP sees the $700,000 as the tip of an iceberg.

[Return to headlines]

Oklahoma Beheading Raises Questions About Prison Conversions and American Muslim Leadership: An Interview With Dr. Michael Welner

by Jerry Gordon

On Tuesday, September 30, 2014, Alton Alexander Nolen, a paroled former felon and Muslim convert aka Jah’Keem Yisrael was charged in Cleveland County, Oklahoma, Court with a first degree murder in the alleged beheading of 54 year old Colleen Hufford. He was also charged with the attempted murder of Traci Johnson, both on Thursday, September 25th on the premises of Vaughan Foods in Moore, Oklahoma. Earlier on Thursday Nolen had been suspended by the Vaughan Foods Human Resources Department because of arguments with Johnson and others, allegedly involving, possible racial and religious matters. Nolen, according to a report from his home town newspaper in Oklahoma, may have been fired for misogynist arguments with female workers about stoning women under Islamic Sharia law. Nolen was overheard invoking alleged “Arabic expressions” in his barbaric attacks that took the life of Hufford and stabbing of Johnson. If not for the shooting of Nolen by Vaughan Foods’ Chief Operating Officer, Mark Vaughan, a county reserve police officer, Nolen’s attack could have resulted in a possible mass killing episode. Police and FBI Investigation of Nolen’s social media revealed grisly beheading videos of American and British captives by the Islamic State, formerly ISIS. There were expressions of hatred towards unbelievers invoked by Qur’anic verses cited by Nolen. Given this background we interviewed noted forensic psychiatrist Dr. Michael Welner, a forensic psychiatrist, who is renowned within legal circles for his work on many of the most sensitive and complex cases in America and beyond. Because his ouvre includes eight mass killing or attempted mass killing cases, defendants implicated in terrorism, risk assessment, and engagement of cross cultural issues, we decided to reach out to him on the Oklahoma beheadings of this week. He is known to readers of the New English Review for the Omar Khadr military tribunal in Guantanamo, in which his work, including a videotaped interview, obliterated fraudulent claims of US torture of a teenage detainee and coercion of his confession; his testimony on risk assessment of future Jihadism had meaningful impact on both a jury picked by Khadr’s own attorneys, as well as the Canadian government. In addition to other terrorism-related cases and casework involving al-Qaeda, he has written on terrorism and its integral dependence on mass media.Dr. Welner, who pioneered peer review to enhance the integrity of forensic consultation, is architect of the Depravity Standard, an evidence-driven inventory of a crime’s intent, actions, attitude, and victimology for application to criminal sentencing, release decisions, and war crimes tribunals. This fascinating research to essentially standardize how evil is distinguished in crime also includes protocols in which the general public, including all who read this, can directly participate in shaping future criminal sentencing, at He is a key contributor to crisis mental health reform legislation before Congress, HR 3717 sponsored by Rep. Tim Murphy, and inspired a recently passed landmark law in Illinois requiring transparency and videotaping of competency examinations.

           — Hat tip: Jerry Gordon [Return to headlines]

Secret Service Director to Resign

Julia Pierson, the director of the Secret Service, is expected to resign in the wake of several security breaches.

It came less than a day after lawmakers from both parties assailed Ms. Pierson’s leadership and said they feared for the lives of the president and others in the protection of the storied protective agency.

[Return to headlines]

Secret Service Director Resigns

Secret Service Director Julia Pierson resigned on Wednesday, after a security breach at the White House and other high-profile incidents raised widespread concerns about the safety of the president and his family.

The resignation comes after the Sept. 19 incident where an intruder jumped over the White House fence and darted past several layers of security to enter the White House itself. He was able to make it to East Room before being apprehended.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Tom and Jerry Cartoons Carry Racism Warning

Tom and Jerry cartoons on television are being accompanied by a warning that they may depict scenes of “racial prejudice”.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Whitewashing Communism Plus Whitewashing Islam Equals Curtains for the West

by Diana West

It started right after 9/11, as soon as President Bush declared Islam was a religion of peace, officially delinking Islam from specifically Islamic jihad. Official policy to this day absolves Islam of jihad, and, most recently, absolves Islam of the jihadists known as the Islamic State.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Canadian PM Says British Explorer Ship Lost Nearly 170 Years Ago is HMS Erebus

Canada’s prime minister says the shipwreck uncovered last month in the Artic was the HMS Erebus which vanished 170 years ago. Explorers believed the wreck belonged to either the HMS Erebus and the HMS Terror both of which sailed under the command of British Rear Adm. Sir John Franklin on an unsuccessful search for the Northwest Passage

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Don’t Exaggerate Military Uniform Ban, Says Dutch Army Chief

The advice to members of the armed forces not to wear their uniforms in public because they could be at risk of attack should ‘not be considered to be more than it is,’ the Dutch armed forces chief said on Monday.

Commander Tom Middendorp said in a briefing to MPs the British and French authorities have made similar recommendations in the wake of their involvement in anti-IS bombing in Iraq.

In addition, the Netherlands has taken similar measures at other times, including after the September 11 attacks in 2001, he told MPs.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

European Antitrust Says Apple Tax Benefits Breach EU Law

Antitrust watchdog sends letter to Ireland demanding explanation

(ANSA) — Brussels, September 30 — The European antitrust authority told Irish authorities competition rules were breached with special tax treatment granted to Apple, in a letter to Irish authorities made public Tuesday.

The letter said the European Commission had found “the tax ruling of 1990…and of 2007 in favour of the Apple Group constitute State aid” and that the European Commission “has doubts about the compatibility of such State aid with the internal market”. The EU watchdog asked for clarification regarding agreements that Ireland and Apple had “negotiated” for calculating its taxable income, and that resulted in an deeper tax discount than could be justified by the rules.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Food Aid for Spaniards Only

Inside a small apartment in the Madrid town of Alcalá de Henares, members of far-right group España 2000 are handing out food and basic products to needy Spaniards.

They say they are picking up where the country’s social services leave off, claiming that the latter predominantly assist immigrants to the detriment of poor Spanish nationals.

Powdered milk, oil, chick peas, sausages, toothpaste … volunteers hand out enough items to last a family a month and a half, according to their own calculations.

The only requirements: truly needing it, and being Spanish.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

France: Class Action Lawsuits Become Legal, First Ready

Consumers’ association sues on behalf of 318,000 tenants

(ANSAmed) — PARIS, OCTOBER 1 — A law introducing class action lawsuits came into effect Wednesday in France, giving consumer groups the right to file a joint lawsuit against a company. As soon as the new legislation became official, a consumers’ association — Ufc-Que Choisir — announced it was ready to file the first such lawsuit on behalf of 318,000 tenants.

The association is suing a company providing real estate services, Foncia, claiming it made 44 million euros by charging tenants with the expense of sending receipts — a practice which, according to a civil court ruling, is illegal.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

France: Woman: 76, Raped ‘For Telling Youths to be Quiet’

After a 76-year-old woman told a group of young men to quiet down outside her apartment building near Paris, they retaliated by brutally raping her and then looting her home, according to reports in France.


A 76-year-old woman was brutally raped in retaliation for telling some men to quiet down. Photo: AFP

Woman, 76, raped ‘for telling youths to be quiet’

After a 76-year-old woman told a group of young men to quiet down outside her apartment building near Paris, they retaliated by brutally raping her and then looting her home, according to reports in France.

•’Balcony rapist’ resumes attacks in France (19 Jun 14)

Police have arrested one suspect and are looking for three others in connection with the horrific rape of an elderly woman who was targeted for doing nothing more than telling the group make less noise, Le Parisien newspaper reported.

The suspects burst into the woman’s apartment in the Parisian suburb of Ivry-sur-Seine on August 7th just after her partner had left to go to work for the day. All four wore masks over their faces and it’s alleged that while three of the intruders pillaged her house, one of them then raped the 76-year-old.

Residents in the neighbourhood have been left shocked and sickened.

“It’s appalling,” one unnamed local told Le Parisien. “Since that day her shutters are closed. Can you imagine? On top of it I’m sure I’ve already crossed paths with her attackers. It’s some youths from around here.”

Police officers quickly identified the alleged rapist and it soon emerged why the man had decided to target the retired victim.

In recent months the atmosphere in her apartment building had degenerated. One unnamed resident told French daily Le Parisien, that “a group of unemployed young men would meet up there. They were often noisy and intoxicated.”…

           — Hat tip: LS [Return to headlines]

Gas Leak Brings Chaos to Norwegian Town

An ammonia leak at a dairy in South-West Norway led to nine people hospitalised and the town centre evacuated on Tuesday. The incident happened on Tuesday morning at around 8am at the Tine dairy in Ålesund.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Greenland Government Rocked by Scandal

After coalition party withdraws and two ministers resign, the pressure is on PM Aleqa Hammond to “take the natural consequences of her actions and step down”.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Italy: ‘Every Time D’Alema Talks, I Win Points’ Says Renzi

Italian premier ‘gets back’ at opponents of his Jobs Act

(ANSA) — Rome, September 30 — Premier Matteo Renzi on Tuesday took pot shots at opponents of his proposed Jobs Act after dissenters within his Democratic Party (PD) failed to rally consensus against him.

He chided fellow PD member and former premier Massimo D’Alema, who led the internal dissenters along with former party chief Pier Luigi Bersani.

“Every time he speaks, I win more points,” Renzi said in an interview to be aired on TV talk show Ballarò.

“If D’Alema didn’t exist, we’d have to invent him”.

The premier moved on to unions, who are vocal opponents of provisions in his Jobs Act that would scale back protections against unfair dismissal for new hires.

“I have a lot of respect for unions, but where they all those years while young people’s rights were being trampled?” the feisty young premier told Ballarò political talk show.

Renzi also commented on his government’s plan to stimulate consumption by giving workers an advance on their severance pay.

“That would create a liquidity problem for businesses,” Renzi said. “Big ones would make it, small ones would be in trouble. So now we’re thinking of allocating European Central Bank funds to small-and-medium businesses for workers”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy’s SME Manufacturing Index Rises

But France and Germany below 50-points mark

(ANSA) — Rome, October 1 — Italy’s index of manufacturing small and medium enterprises (SMEs) crossed the 50-points mark dividing contraction and expansion in Setember and climbed to 50.7. This was much better than the expected score of 49.5.

France’s manufacturing SME index was 48.8, compared to 46.9 in August, while Germany’s stood at 49.9.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Slow Food Welcomes EU Infraction Proceedings Against UK

Pascale says system green lights coke, gives red to olive oil

(ANSA) — Rome, October 1 — Slow Food Italy president Gaetano Pascale on Wednesday welcomed the European Commission decision to open infraction proceedings against Great Britain’s so-called “traffic light” food-labelling scheme.

The system is designed to help consumers make healthy choices, by labelling food items red, amber or green according to their fat, salt and sugar contents.

However, according to Pascale, the system not only damages local produce but could lead to the paradox of “having a red label for extra-virgin olive oil and a green one for diet Coke”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Law Extending Italy’s Missions Abroad Approved

Decree clears Senate with 190 votes in favour, 42 against

(ANSA) — Rome, October 1 — The Senate on Wednesday gave definitive approval to the government’s decree extending Italy’s military missions abroad. The legislation, which extended Italy’s missions in Lebanon and Afghanistan among others, passed with 190 votes in favour, 42 against and 17 abstentions. The anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) and the Left, Ecology and Freedom (SEL) party voted against, while the Northern League abstained.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Profile: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg

Nato’s 13th secretary general, former Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, looks an unlikely choice on several counts: an economist with no defence background, a social democrat who built up good relations with Russia, another Scandinavian hard on the heels of Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Sweden’s ‘Most Dangerous Art’ On Sale

Work by controversial jailed Swedish artist Dan Park is on sale online and could reach a gallery in Copenhagen, despite a previous exhibition being pulled.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

UK: Anjem Choudary, In His Own Words

by Soeren Kern

“In the Quran it is not allowed for you to feel sorry for non-Muslims. I don’t feel sorry for him.” — Anjem Choudary.

“Eventually the whole world will be governed by Shari’ah & Muslims will have authority over China Russia USA etc This is the promise of Allah.” — Anjem Choudary.

“Under the Koran the sale of alcohol is prohibited and if one were to also drink alcohol, that would be 40 lashes.” — Anjem Choudary.

“We (Muslims) take the Jizya, which is ours anyway. The normal situation is to take money from the kuffar (non-Muslim). They give us the money. You work, give us the money, Allahu Akhbar. We take the money.” — Anjem Choudary.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Why Norway is the Best Place in the World to Grow Old

Norway is the best country in which to grow old, according to new research — while Britain does not make it into the top ten.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Death in Benghazi, Part 3: The Web of Deception; An Interview With Ken Timmerman

by Jerry Gordon and Mike Bates

The House Select Benghazi Committee Hearings chaired by Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) opened on Wednesday, September 17th. The House GOP leadership requested initial funding of $3.3 million in support of investigations and hearings. According to an AP report, the 12 member panel (seven Republicans and five Democrats with a staff of 30) focused on the issue of embassy security. Chairman Gowdy said, “the U.S. must learn from past violence on U.S. facilities from Beirut to East Africa to Benghazi to prevent repeat attacks.” The AP Report further noted the bi-partisan concerns on this issue:

Gowdy credited a Democrat on the 12-member panel, Rep. Adam Schiff of California, with recommending the subject — embassy security — for the gathering. The committee’s top Democrat, Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, echoed the importance of improving the protection of American facilities and the State Department’s diplomatic security chief was the first witness to testify.

Just prior to the initial hearing of the Select Benghazi Committee FoxNews Special Report had revelations from interviews with the three surviving members of the Security Team at the CIA Annex. They were drawn from the book, 13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened In Benghazi by Mitchell Zuckoff with the Annex Security Team. Additionally, there was former CBS journalist Sheryl Atkisson’s investigative report, based on an interview with former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Raymond Maxwell about key staff of former Secretary of State Clinton. They allegedly culled out controversial emails and documents preventing review by the Accountability Review Board (ARB). The ARB was led by Ambassador Thomas R. Pickering and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullins.

This follows our earlier interview with Timmerman about his own investigative book, Dark Forces, The Truth About What Happened in Benghazi. Read our July 2014 NER articles based on our prior interviews with Timmerman, Roger Aronoff of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi and Larry Ward of Special Operations Speaks: Death in Benghazi, Part I: The Attack and Death in Benghazi, Part II: Will the House Select Committee Find the Truth?

Mike Morell, former Acting and Deputy Director of the CIA provided public testimony at a Hearing of the House Select Committee on Intelligence on April 2, 2014. It his handling of the talking points regarding the circumstances surrounding the attack on the evening of 9/11/2012 in Benghazi that resulted in the deaths of four Americans; Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, his Communications Aide, Sean Smith, CIA security contractors, Tyrone Powers and Glen Doherty.

Watch this C-SPAN video of Morell’s testimony before the April 2, 2014, House Select Intelligence Committee.

There are allegations by both the Senate and House Select Committee leaders that Morell’s testimony about the talking points was “misleading” based on alleged reliance on news reports and heavily redacted to exclude possible Al Qaeda involvement. Moreover, Morell made the judgment call to dismiss emails from the CIA Station chief in Tripoli that there were no spontaneous protests that led to the attack on the Special Missions Compound and CIA Annex. Subsequent third party intelligence revealed the attacks may been pre-planned given the use of professional mortar attack that took the lives of Powers and Doherty at the Annex on the morning of 9/12.

           — Hat tip: Jerry Gordon [Return to headlines]

Former Acting CIA Director Denies Iranian Involvement in Benghazi

by Kenneth R. Timmerman

In a September 19 speech in Florida, for which he was paid the princely sum of $22,000, former CIA Acting Director Mike Morell doubled down on the administration’s fairy tale of what happened in Benghazi.

Two former U.S. intelligence officers had crafted a question for Morell about the Iranian and Hezbollah involvement in the September 11, 2012 Benghazi attacks. They wanted to make sure he could answer truthfully, without divulging classified matters.

“Was the CIA aware of the Iranian and Hezbollah involvement in Benghazi during the uprising against Qaddafi, and later, in the lead-up to the attacks on Sept 11-12, 2012?” they asked. “Was the CIA aware of the arrival on July 31, 2012 of a 7-man team of so-called Iranian Red Crescent workers in Benghazi?”

Morell could have made a general comment to the effect that the U.S. has been concerned for years with Iran’s aggressive intelligence presence in many parts of the world. He might have mentioned Iran’s eagerness to kill Americans in Afghanistan and Iraq, or their reckless attempt in 2011 to kill the Saudi ambassador in Washington, DC by blowing up a tony restaurant in our nation’s capitol.

There were many ways Morell could have answered that question truthfully, even artfully, without getting into classified matters or jeopardizing the ongoing nuclear talks with Iran, which the Obama administration is determined to protect.

Instead, he chose a flat-out lie.

Here’s what he said, word for word, from an audiotape of his presentation before the Tiger Bay Club in Pensacola:

“[Long pause] So. There were no Iranian operatives in Benghazi. There were no Hezbollah operatives in Benghazi. I can tell you that with great, great certainty. The people who showed up at the State Department facility that night were a mixture of folks who just wanted to cause trouble, folks who just wanted to have a good time, and Islamic extremists.”

The presence of Iranian and Hezbollah operatives in Benghazi since early 2011 was well known to the CIA, which had been reporting on their activities on a regular basis. It was also well known to U.S. military contractors in Benghazi, from whom I first learned about it in March 2011.

Iran’s hostile intelligence presence was known to Ambassador Stevens, who was present at a briefing by the embassy’s Emergency Action Committee in June 2012 where the CIA Chief of Station made a Powerpoint presentation on Iran’s ongoing efforts to move men and money to Benghazi.

It was also known to the local Libyan media, which published pictures of the seven-man team of Iranian Red Crescent workers that arrived in Benghazi on July 30, 2012, and was “kidnapped” that night by an Islamist group that appears to have been on the Iranian payroll. (It is no state secret that the Red Crescent society, the Muslim counterpart to the Red Cross, has been used repeatedly by terrorists in Gaza, the West Bank, Somalia and Sudan for operations having nothing to do with its humanitarian charter.) (READ MORE)

           — Hat tip: Jerry Gordon [Return to headlines]

Libyan Refugees Denounced as ‘Rich and Rude’ In Tunisia

They’re said to be unruly, rude to women, and are triggering price inflation: Libyan refugees have a bad rap in Tunisia. Over the past few months, thousands have arrived in Tunisia, fleeing the fighting in their own country. In Tunis, two such refugees explain their community’s reputation with Tunisians and the discrimination they face.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Follow a #Pilgrim on Their #Hajj to #Mecca

If you’re not on your own pilgrimage to Mecca, you might as well follow someone else’s on Instagram.

The annual Hajj to Mecca is one of the most ancient and sacred rituals in Islam, but it’s also the largest annual gathering of people on the planet, and this week many pilgrims are recording their rites through selfies, even as Islamic scholars begin to declare they’re haram (illegal in Islam).

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Group Trying to Get Young Women to Travel to Iraq and Syria

An unknown group is trying to persuade young women from the Stockholm area to travel and join ISIS in Syria and Iraq, Swedish Television News reports.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

ISIS Beheads 9 Kurdish Fighters Captured in Syria

Activists say Islamic State militants have beheaded nine Kurdish fighters, including three women, captured in clashes near the Syria-Turkey border.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Wednesday that the nine Kurds were captured during fighting over the northern Syrian town of Kobani, also known as Ayn Arab.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Islamic State ‘Adapting to US-Led Air Strikes’

Nearly two months on since the US began air strikes against Islamic State (IS) positions in northern Iraq, there are signs that the militants are adapting to the new reality.

Analysts say that IS militants are known for their light mobility, enabling them to withdraw and regroup quicker than regular army troops.

“It’s a well-tried and tested formula,” said defence and security expert Paul Gibson, a retired British Army brigadier.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Kuwait: MPs Blast Ashour’s Call to Scrap Sharia College — Opposition Says Revoking Citizenship Against Int’l Law

By B Izzak, Staff Writer

Leading Shiite MP Saleh Ashour yesterday called for the closure of the Sharia (Islamic studies) College at Kuwait University, saying the labor market no longer needs its graduates, adding the college has become a place for extremist ideology. The call was immediately scorned by Islamist MPs, who contradicted Ashour, insisting that graduates of the college are much needed and that it is not a place for extremists.

Ashour said in a statement that the domestic labor market does not require graduates of the Sharia College, who through political pressure work in the public prosecution and other legal positions for which they are not qualified. The lawmaker said the level of the college students is below standard as they lack legal and administrative capabilities for employment. He said the best option is to close down the college and merge it with the law college where graduates can serve the society.

Islamist MP Humoud Al-Hamdan however criticized the proposal by Ashour, saying it gives rise to divisions and rifts within the Kuwaiti society. He said that the proposal is not based on scientific studies to prove the point. Hamdan insisted that the claim that the college breeds extremists is totally untrue as it greatly focuses on moderate and tolerant thinking. MP Abdulrahman Al-Jeeran, another Islamist MP, also rejected the proposal, saying it lacked wisdom. Jeeran said that the labor market is thirsty for sharia graduates who are far from the extremist ideology.

MP Saud Al-Huraiji deplored the call to close the Sharia College, saying the college is “a red line we will not allow anyone to approach”, adding that it was regrettable that MPs have left everything else and are instigating authorities against the Sharia College.

In another development, opposition leaders and groups yesterday strongly condemned the government’s decision to revoke the citizenship of Saad Al-Ajmi, the spokesman of the opposition group Popular Action Movement (PAM). Ajmi was among 18 Kuwaitis who were stripped of their nationality due to various reasons. Secretary General of PAM and former opposition MP Musallam Al-Barrak strongly lashed out at the government, saying it is taking reckless decisions without any consideration for the serious regional developments.

The opposition Progressive Movement described the government’s decision as oppressive and selective punishment against opposition members. The group said in a statement that the government action violates the International Declaration of Human Rights which prohibits depriving people of their citizenship in an oppressive way.

           — Hat tip: RR [Return to headlines]

Teenage Girls Recall Horrors of ISIS Captivity

Teenage girls who escaped the brutal clutches of ISIS terrorists have recounted a harrowing nightmare of beatings, torture, rape and degradation that included being forced to watch videos of men being beheaded.

The girls, members of the persecuted Yazidi minority from northern Iraq, say they were captured and sold or given as gifts.

“We would try to make ourselves look ugly,” an escaped girl, 15, told the Global Post news service. “Some women would cry or scream or fight, but it made no difference. They were always taken anyway.”

She said they were debased so badly that death, even by suicide, was more appealing than living under ISIS’s barbaric control.

“One girl hanged herself,” the teen said. “Another tried, but the ISIS guards stopped her and beat her very badly. No one else tried after that.”

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

The Case Against Qatar

The tiny, gas-rich emirate has pumped tens of millions of dollars through obscure funding networks to hard-line Syrian rebels and extremist Salafists, building a foreign policy that punches above its weight. After years of acquiescing — even taking advantage of its ally’s meddling — Washington may finally be punching back.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

The Real Threat

By Ahmad Al-Sarraf

At a time when the allies’ planes took off to bomb Islamic State bases, the car of the representative of the social affairs minister headed to Kuwait Municipality with a letter asking for locations to allow the Salafist and Brotherhood parties to open propagation offices, with the same number of Kuwait’s six governorates! And I do not know why Kuwait joined the war against Daesh, even if morally, and did not side with them if this is its stand towards extremist parties.

As for the current war on IS, it is like attacking areas of predators to eradicate them and leaving their hatcheries as they are! So the allied actions against IS will not succeed if the bombing is limited to military bases. Attention should turn, when the operations are over, inside the backward Islamic states to eradicate with the same decisiveness the backward parts of its school curricula and the extreme intellect in its religious establishments as well as religious zealousness in its information programs.

It is also necessary to prevent activities of religious parties and be open for others and encourage cultural and literature activities. In a column by one of the Brotherhood party leaders in Kuwait, he said that the Brotherhood did not hijack planes, did not blow up cafes, did not attempt to kill any Amir, were not arrested in spying cells, did not butcher their adversaries or used explosive belts or blew up embassies and towers, etc, as all these terrorist acts were not committed by the Brotherhood, and despite this they were described as terrorists! Of course, this talk is meaningless, because the Brotherhood’s core ideology, and the two swords symbol, and the world “prepare” which is taken from a religious text, are all clear indications in our opinion of the Brotherhood’s terrorist inclinations.

Their bloody history is enough and well known and an evidence on them being a terrorist party. This besides the series of political assassinations that were carried out by their secret apparatus, under the leadership of Abdulrahman Al-Sanadi, who was selected by the murshid (guide) Al-Banna personally! So each attempt to exonerate the Brotherhood from terrorism in meaningless, because as the person who instilled the Nazi ideology in Hitler’s head for example, did not participate with him in killing millions, so it can be said that leaders of the Brotherhood from Abdullah Azzam and Qaradawi and tens of propagandists did not participate directly in any terrorist operation or regional wars, but they did what is more harmful than that by damaging the brains of tens of thousands of youth, urging them to fight in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Kosovo and elsewhere to be killed for nothing! So the ideology that is behind the death of all these innocent men in useless wars is a Salaf and Brotherhood one, and they are responsible in the first place, not the deluded youth.

We return to the start of the column and say the danger of “Daesh” is not in the capital of its state, and not where its armies are in the lands of Iraq and valleys of Syria — rather it is in our schoolbooks and some of our media and mosque pulpits that are very extreme.

—Translated by Kuwait Times from Al-Qabas

           — Hat tip: RR [Return to headlines]

The War Against ISIS, Syrian Opposition and Middle East Christians: A Discussion With M. Zuhdi Jasser, Walid Phares, John Hajjar

by Jerry Gordon

President Obama’s eve of 9/11 speech in which he declared “war” on the Islamic State, formerly ISIS, contained a commitment to arm and support so-called moderate Syrian opposition to assist in “degrading and ultimately destroying” the Salafist Jihadist self-declared Caliphate. That commitment Obama made clear did not include any a commitment to put US “boots on the ground.” Instead his plan relies on air attacks, training and support of Iraqi military forces, Kurdish peshmerga and Free Syrian Army contingents. President Obama may have been referring to the Free Syrian Army. But which Free Syrian Army (FSA)? One group is the Free Syrian Army, with a Supreme Military Command in Erdogan’s Ankara that purportedly sold American Journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, who were barbarously murdered by ISIS. Those graphic beheadings deliberately conveyed on videos aroused American public opinion demanding action that prompted Obama’s televised address to the nation.

Dramatically, one leader of the “moderate” Syrian opposition Dr. Kamal al-Labwani, a veteran Syrian secular opponent of the Assad regime living in exile in Sweden, surfaced in Israel coincidental with President’s ISIS strategy speech, at the annual International Counter Terrorism (ICT) Conference in Herzliya. Labwani’s attendance at the ICT conference may reflect the outreach by the other FSA led by the Syrian Opposition Coalition headquartered near embattled Aleppo composed of ex-Assad military including Alawites, Christians and Sunni tribal leaders currently battling ISIS inside Syria.. Ilana Freedman estimates through her sources that there could be as many as 50,000 Syrian opposition fighters in this “other FSA.”

Perhaps, Dr. Labwani’s visit to the ICT conference in Israel may have also discussed possible mutual interests regarding covert support of the FSA military command and indigenous Sunni tribes’ opposition to ISIS and the Assad regime. If the case, one can only hope that might include linking up with Syrian Kurdish resistance forces, despite earlier differences.

While these positive efforts were going on in support of secular democratic opposition in Syria against both the Assad regime and ISIS, an event occurred at a gala in Washington on the evening of 9/11 sponsored by a new group, In Defense of Christians. The disruption during a speech by US Texas Sen. Ted Cruz indicated the extent of infiltration in America by a cabal composed of Middle East Christian Clerics and wealthy elites beholden to the Shiite nexus of the Islamic regime in Tehran, and Assad in Damascus. John Hajjar of Middle East Christians in America (MECHRIC) had warned of this cabal in a series of articles prior to the 9/11/14 evening event in Washington.

Hajjar’s warning was crystallized by the disruption of a speech by Texas US Senator, Ted Cruz, who was booed off the stage by some in the audience when he said “Christians have no greater ally than Israel.” He strode off the stage saying: “If you will not stand with Israel and the Jews, Then I will not stand with you. Good night and God bless.”

           — Hat tip: Jerry Gordon [Return to headlines]

Putin Plans New Measures to ‘Protect’ Internet

But no complete State control’

(ANSA) — Moscow, October 1 — Russian President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday it was “indispensable” to take new measures to “protect” Russian cyberspace without putting it “under the complete control” of the State.

The Kremlin won’t restrict access to the Internet, he added.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Ukraine Crisis: Shell Hits Donetsk School Playground

At least ten people have been killed in the city of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine. Reports say four people died when artillery shells landed near a school. Another six people lost their lives when a shell struck near a bus stop, setting a vehicle alight.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Seven Dead and Six Wounded in Kabul Taliban Attack

Taliban claim responsibility for suicide bombings

(ANSA) — Kabul, October 1 — Seven people were killed and six injured in the early hours of Wednesday morning after two Taliban suicide attacks against Afghan army vehicles, news agency Pajhwok said, citing police sources.

Mohammad Ayoub Salangi, Afghan deputy minister of security, said the suicide bombers attacked an army van in the vicinity of Kabul University, while a second military vehicle was targeted in Deh Sabz, in the outskirts of the Afghan capital. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujhaid claimed responsibility for the attacks on twitter and specified the actions were part of the 2014 Khaibar offensive. Wednesday’s onslaught was the Taliban’s first since Ashraf Ghani became president.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

The Road to Bamiyan: A Public Works Debacle That Defines Afghanistan

It was to be a symbol of reconstructed Afghanistan: a paved highway from Kabul to the beautiful valley of Bamiyan. Construction has long been underway, but the project may never be completed — a victim of the realities in present-day Afghanistan.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Hong Kong: The “Umbrella Revolution”: Students Turn Their Backs on Flag Raising for China’s National Day

The students boycotted the raising of the flag to mark the founding of the People’s Republic of China. Some demand the release of political prisoners and recall Tiananmen. Leung Chun-ying keeps silent. China censors images and news reports on the demands of democracy. 13 Chinese who support Occupy Central arrested. Beijing warns embassies and consulates: do not interfere with the protesters. Support from Canada, Britain, Australia.

Hong Kong (AsiaNews) — Thousands of demonstrators continue to block the main roads of the territory on the fourth day of Occupy Central, demanding full democracy for the people of Hong Kong.

Yesterday evening the Admiralty — close to government offices — was overflowing with tens of thousands of people with multicolored umbrellas who braved a storm with a huge downpour and thunder. The umbrellas have become the symbol of this peaceful revolution, having been used by protesters to defend themselves from fire hydrants and tear gas launched by the police in recent days, as well as from the sun.

Today, October 1, is also a national holiday to commemorate the founding of the People’s Republic of China. This morning at 8am the flag-raising ceremony took place on Bahuinia square in the presence of the governor Leung Chun-ying. While he honoured China, a group of pro-democracy students turned their backs to the flag; others raised their arms crossing them (as if they were chained); others demanded the release of political prisoners in China and the overturning of the judgment of the Tiananmen massacre of June 4, 1989.

Leung Chun-ying made no reference to the people’s demands for democracy, nor the impressive demonstrations of these days. The Chief Executive is responsible for the police violence against the young and defenseless and Occupy Central is demanding his resignation.

Censorship prevails in China: the newspapers and the television make no mention of the events in Hong Kong. The official television channel, without showing any image, only said that there are attempts to create “disorder” in the area by pressing on the government to “unreasonable demands.”

China fears that the democracy “virus” will corrode the mainland. Today, the China Human Rights Defenders released the news that Chinese police have arrested several activists to prevent them from going to Hong Kong to take part in the protests. At least 13 people were arrested and five threatened for expressing their support for Occupy Central.

According to some researchers, a virus of Chinese origin has attacked the smartphone telephone network in Hong Kong. It blocks communication, hacks into contacts, photos and passwords in both Android and Apple models. Many believe it is an attempt to target the democratic movement’s communications.

In addition to suffocating the movement, China is also attempting to isolate protesters. Yesterday , the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has sent a letter of warning to the embassies in China and consulates in Hong Kong, asking them not to offer any support and not to be seen close to the demonstrators because of the dangers, created by “acts of violence and crimes”.

In reality, the occupation of the center continues to take place in a peaceful and polite manner: once again this morning the protesters who slept on the streets cleaned the pavements and reached an agreement with the police to leave humanitarian corridors open for emergency passage of ambulances. Benny Tai, one of the leaders of Occupy Central, has publicly apologized to the residents of the occupied areas for the difficulties they cause. But — he said — “It is a short term inconvenience, while we are striving for long-term harmony in society”.

In order not to disperse the group and not be led away by the police, the leaders of the democracy movement have asked demonstrators to focus the sit-in on Admiralty, Causeway Bay and Mong Kok.

The occupation of these areas — the financial and commercial heart of the city- risks eroding its business and earnings in this week’s holiday — National Day — in which thousands of Chinese come down to Hong Kong for shopping. Some stores have complained about a reduction in sales of up to 50% in the first days of demonstrations. In any case, so afr the Hong Kong dollar and stock market have not experienced any drastic collapse.

Many young Hong Kongers abroad, in Australia, Britain, Canada are organizing demonstrations in support of their fellow Democrats. The White House and British politicians have asked China to treat Occupy Central demonstrations with care and without violence.

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

Hong Kong Protesters Threaten to Occupy Buildings

HONG KONG — Raising the stakes in their standoff with the authorities, student leaders of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protests warned they will step up their actions if the territory’s top official doesn’t resign by Thursday, possibly occupying several important government buildings.

Storming government buildings would risk inviting another confrontation with police. It also would put pressure on the Chinese government, which so far has said little beyond declaring the protests illegal and backing Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying’s attempts to end them.

Chinese state media indicated the government may be losing patience with the protests. An editorial solemnly read Wednesday on China’s main TV broadcaster CCTV said all Hong Kong residents should support authorities to “deploy police enforcement decisively” and “restore the social order in Hong Kong as soon as possible.”

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Scores of Mainland Supporters of Democracy in Hong Kong Arrested

Chinese police react angrily to demonstrations in support of Occupy Central and protests in Hong Kong. In almost all of the country’s big cities, people are summarily arrested and subjected to overnight interrogations. In some cases, unknown people carry out raids.

Beijing (AsiaNews) — A number of Chinese citizens have faced reprisals for supporting the protests for universal suffrage in Hong Kong. The occupation of several areas in Hong Kong, including parts of its financial and political centre, has inspired many Chinese on the mainland and encouraged them to speak up for democracy, with many photos appearing on social media of activists holding signs in support of Hong Kong and demanding constitutional democracy for the territory.

Police in China have harassed and warned activists in many cities, concerned that they may try to travel to Hong Kong or take to streets to protest. CHRD has documented the following incidents from reports by Rights Defence Network (RDN) and Civil Rights and Livelihood Watch (CRLW):


Shenzhen police criminally detained activist Wang Long on the charge of “creating a disturbance” on September 29 after he posted messages online about the Hong Kong protests. He is being held in Longgang District Detention Centre in Shenzhen.

Chongqing activist Luo Yaling was taken away by police on September 30 after she expressed support online for the protests in Hong Kong. National security officers initially kept Luo under soft detention at her home after she posted the messages and photos about the protests on weibo and in a QQ online group. Later, she was taken to Daxin Village Police Station.

Shanghai plainclothes police and unknown thugs went to the home of activist Chen Jianfang on September 30 and tried to take her into custody, but she refused to open the door. Chen believes they came for her because she had called on activists to join a demonstration on October 1 in the Shanghai People’s Park in support of the Hong Kong demonstrators. Lawyer Liu Shihui went to Chen’s home along with Jiangsu activist Le Senping to try to stop police from harassing her. Reports indicate that police have since seized both Liu and Le Senping, but it is unclear where they are being held.

Plainclothes police in Shanghai also took away activist Shen Yanqiu on September 30. Shen, who shaved her head on September 28 and posted a photo of herself online to show solidarity with Hong Kong protestors, is being held in an unknown location.

Guangzhou police seized dozens of activists and citizens who gathered in the Martyr Memorial Gardens to show support for the Hong Kong protestors on September 30. While reportedly up to 20 citizens were seized and taken to unknown locations, Huang Minpeng and Liu Hui are confirmed to have been taken to Datang Police Station in Yuexiu District, where they were denied food before being released in the afternoon.

Beijing activist Jiang Liuying reportedly was taken away by police along with his wife, activist Li Dongmei, on September 30, after he had received phone calls from officers looking to question him. He told friends that this might be tied to his expression of support for the Hong Kong protests online.

Threats and harassment

On September 30, Chongqing national security officers called activist Xie Dan to say they were coming to his home to question him. Chongqing activist Han Liang was questioned by police in the early morning of September 30, but has since returned home.

Beijing activists Han Ying and Guo Guijun were both visited by police at their homes late at night on September 30. Police demanded entry but did not show any proper documentation and threatened to take them into custody, since the activists refused to open their doors. Their fate remains unclear at the time of this report.

In addition, national security officers from Changyuan County in Henan Province threatened democracy activist Guo Chunping after he sent a message on WeChat, a Chinese text messaging platform, in support of Hong Kong on September 29. An officer called Guo and said he would be in danger if he did not answer her questions.

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

Things That Could Only Happen in a Hong Kong Protest

Tear gas, pepper spray, feelings of anger and betrayal, crowds forced to run from riot police… and yet the protests retain that uniquely Hong Kong character. Reporters and Hong Kong residents have shared their most surreal and charming experiences on the streets.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Tony Abbott Brushes Off Row Over ‘Confronting’ Burka

TONY Abbott has refused to expand on his observation that he finds the burka “confronting”, after Labor labelled the comment divisive.

Labor says the Prime Minister missed a chance to unify Australians when he said yesterday he wished people did not wear the Islamic head covering.

Mr Abbott’s comment came amid calls by some MPs to ban the burka, and as he said it was not the business of government to tell people what they should and shouldn’t wear.

Asked about the issue again this morning, Mr Abbott said: “I invite people to go back and look at those comments. I’m not going to add to them today.

“I should just say this: it’s hardly the most important issue facing our country right now.”

With some of his own MPs pushing to ban the burka, particularly in parliament house, Mr Abbott said yesterday he found the garment confronting and added: “Frankly, I wish it was not worn”…

[Return to headlines]

The First South Americans: Extreme Living

After humans arrived in South America, they quickly spread into some of its most remote corners.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

200 Sub-Saharan Migrants Try to Storm Melilla, Pushed Back

Many Syrians in Spanish enclave

(ANSAmed) — MADRID, OCTOBER 1 — About 200 migrants of sub-Saharan origins on Wednesday tried to climb over the border fence of Melilla, a Spanish enclave in Morocco, but were pushed back by the Guardia Civil and the Moroccan gendarme. The attempt to cross into the enclave, according to the Melilla prefect’s office, occurred around 8 AM when — taking advantage of the rain and bad weather — about 200 migrants climbed onto the double metallic barrier to cross into Spanish territory but were stopped by border guards with assistance from a helicopter. The Guardia Civil seized a 35-centimeter knife from one of the migrants. Sources say that some 16,000 migrants have tried to enter Melilla via land since the beginning of the year and that 1,900 have succeeded. The overall number of undocumented migrants that have entered the autonomous city is around 4,000, with a high number of Syrian refugees among them.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Avramopoulos Says No to Europe as a Fortress

Future EU commissioner calls for boosted Frontex

(by Patrizia Antonini) (ANSAmed) — BRUSSELS, OCTOBER 1 — “No to Europe as a fortress” was the statement used by the future EU commissioner in charge of immigration and home affairs, Greece’s Dimitris Avramopolous, to define his political stance before European MPS from the civil liberties commission during a tree-hour session.

The commissioner, the first in the history of the Union to have a portfolio dedicated to migration, gave the speech as part of mandatory steps for his confirmation, to be voted after the necessary evaluations in a plenary session of the EU Parliament on October 22.

Replying to 45 questions, Avramopoulos outlined his priorities: boosting Frontex both in terms of resources and for a mission aimed “not just at patrolling borders but also at saving human lives”; revision of Dublin’s regulations to increase “solidarity”; full implementation of the package on asylum policies without exceptions or short cuts; strong work to attain a “homogeneous fabric of rules for a policy of legal immigration” in “close cooperation” with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini.

He defended himself easily from questions by Five-Star Movement (M5S) MP Laura Ferrara and Tsipras List deputy Barbara Spinelli, who blamed him for “praises” expressed when the Papandreou government erected a barrier with barbed wire at the Greek border with Turkey to deal with migrants. He spoke about a “caricature” when the head of the M5S delegation Ignazio Corrao questioned him over a photo posted to websites portraying him close to the Turkish border with a machine gun.

Overall, the audition convinced European Socialists.

In particular, S&D Tanja Fajon welcomed Avramopoulos’ statement against Europe as a fortress.

Amnesty International also expressed a positive opinion.

“We think he took a few important steps and is going in the right political direction, although everything will need to be examined in detail”, said the EU delegation.

But Amnesty, which presented in Brussels a report on the record number of deaths at sea in 2014 — an estimated 2,500 as of September 15 — opposes the replacement of Italy’s Mare Nostrum surveillance-and-rescue program with the Triton operation. “We are strongly concerned because an operation that is working out means to shut down while Frontex plus, or Triton as it will be called, does not have the requisites to confront the situation, for the time being”, said Matteo de Bellis of Amnesty Europe.

According to the NGO, in order for Frontex plus to be effective, it should patrol international waters of the central Mediterranean, with more manpower and means provided by member States and a clear mandate to save human lives.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

EU Embassies Should Take Asylum Requests, New Commissioner Says

BRUSSELS — Dimitris Avramopoulos , the incoming Greek EU commissioner for migration and home affairs, wants offices set up at the EU’s foreign embassies to allow people to apply for asylum.

“We should have offices in the EU delegations all over the world, in particular in third countries, where we should allow people to apply for asylum or for legal migration status,” Avramopoulou told euro-deputies at his hearing on Tuesday (30 September).

The idea departs from Europe’s existing and more restrictive migration policies, which critics say are forcing people fleeing persecution and wars to embark on perilous journeys on small boats across the Mediterranean Sea.

Some 3,000 people have already died in the attempt this year alone, with a report out by Amnesty International on Tuesday demanding a collective EU response amid reports Italy is set to wind down its Mare Nostrum search and rescue naval operations.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Pope Francis Urges Europe to Open Doors to Refugees

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis urged Europe to open its doors to refugees Wednesday as he marked the anniversary of a deadly migrant shipwreck off Sicily by meeting with survivors and relatives of the victims.

Some 368 people — most of them Eritrean and Syrian asylum-seekers — drowned Oct. 3, 2013 when their smugglers’ boat capsized off the island of Lampedusa. The tragedy jolted the EU and prompted Italy to beef up its Mediterranean sea patrols, which have rescued some 160,000 people this year alone.

On Wednesday, nearly 40 survivors and relatives of the Lampedusa victims met with Francis in the Vatican auditorium before heading to Lampedusa for ceremonies to commemorate the anniversary.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

2 thoughts on “Gates of Vienna News Feed 10/1/2014

  1. For Italy, the problem of “illegal” immigrants manifests itself only when a boat carrying “migrants” appears in their waters. The “migrants” must then be “rescued.”

    The alternative of sending “migrants” back into the sea with food and fuel is not one the government has contemplated. Nor has it contemplated meeting “migrants” as soon as they clear Libyan waters and turning them back with just enough fuel to return to Libya.

    No, the Italian navy has deteriorated to being a taxi service.

    And the Italians — and all Europeans — demonstrate they are nothing but the Muslims’ [female dog].

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