Gates of Vienna News Feed 10/18/2015

The anti-immigration Swiss People’s Party (SVP) won a record number of seats in today’s election, which will probably cause the governing coalition in Switzerland to change from center-left to center-right.

Meanwhile, the Slovenian government has decided that it will only allow 2,500 “refugees” per day to cross into its territory from Croatia, due to the fact that Austria has set a limit of 1,500 per day coming from Slovenia. Croatia had asked for a level of 5,000 per day. As a result of these limitations, and because Hungary has closed its crossings, immigrants are beginning to back up in Serbia.

In other news, Henriette Reker, the mayoral candidate who was recently stabbed in the neck by an angry citizen who opposed her immigration policies, was elected mayor of Cologne.

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

Thanks to C. Cantoni, Dean, Fjordman, Insubria, JD, RRN, 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
» Finnish Defense Facing New Wave of Cuts
» Italy: Renzi Says Will Resend Same Budget if EC Nixes it
» Rate Debate: Fed Officals Split on Timing of Increase
» Weak Inflation Puts ECB in Tight Spot at Malta Meeting
» Amazon to Sue Fake Reviewers
» Amazon Targets 1,114 ‘Fake Reviewers’ In Seattle Lawsuit
» Briton Who Tried to Set Up Terror Camp in U.S. Jailed
» CNN Anchor Demands Americans “Stop Swooning Over Putin”
» Democratic Congresswoman Claims Global Warming Will Force American Women Into Prostitution
» Jesse Ventura Says US Government is ‘Fascist Regime,’ Calls for Change
» McDonald’s in a ‘Deep Depression’ And ‘Facing Its Final Days’
» Obama Urges Reform of ‘Unfair’ US Criminal Justice System
» Swine Flu Vaccine Far More Dangerous Than Swine Flu Itself
» Canada to Hold Federal Elections Monday
Europe and the EU
» ‘Arabic’ Sign in Swedish Station ‘Unreadable’
» Cameron Vows to Allocate $7.7 Mln to Groups Confronting Extremism in UK
» Chinese President Xi Jinping Insists State Visit Includes a Trip to an English Pub
» Czech President Bemoans Islamic Veil for Covering Up Beauty
» EU ‘Has Legal Basis to Intervene in Country Economies’
» Four Iraqis Charged in Alleged Swiss ISIS Cell
» Swiss People’s Party on Track for Record Seats
» Thousands Rally in Spain for Release of Basque Separatists
» Why German Protestants Will Stop Converting Muslims
North Africa
» Egypt: Sisi’s New Capital, Building to Begin in January
Middle East
» AP Interview: Iran Preparing for ‘Tsunami’ Of Foreign Tourists in Post-Sanctions Era
» Cuban FM Refutes Reports on Alleged Deployment of Cuban Troops in Syria
» Full Metal Retard: US Launches “Performance-Based” Ammo Paradrop Program for Make-Believe “Syrian Arabs”
» Hezbollah Says Presence in Syria Greater Than Ever Before
» Inside Yemen’s Forgotten War
» Iraqi Forces Advance Against is on Three Fronts
» Naming Names: ‘Non-ISIL’ Actually Means ‘Al-Qaeda’ In Syria
» Putin ‘Strong and Shrewd’, Obama Fails, Lacks Plan in Syria — US Poll
» Report: 3-Vehicle Crash in Central Iran Kills 20 Illegal Afghan Migrants, 10 Injured
» Russia Shows Early Success, New Capabilities in Syria
» Saudi Arabia: Israel: Egypt ‘Knocking on Putin’s Door,’ Not Obama’s
» Saudis Poke the Russian Bear, Start Oil War in Eastern Europe
» Support for Putin’s Bombing Campaign Among Syrians in Russia
» Sweet Harmony: Syrian Opposition ‘Sharing Experience’ With Jihadists
» Ford Starts Producing Cars With Russian Engines
» Nothing Good Will Come of it: Ukrainian Cops to Learn From US Police
» Russia and India to Work on 5th-Gen Upgrade to Su-35 Fighter
» Ukraine Buys 40,000 Tons of Coal a Day From ‘Separatists’ — Minister
South Asia
» For Nepal, India’s Embargo Stems From Modi’s Hegemonic Ambitions
» Italy Blocks Indian Application to MTCR
» US Troop Extension Hands Afghanistan a Lifeline — For Now
» Uzbek Farmers Told to Glue Cotton Back on Bushes
Far East
» How China Guards the Xi Creation Myth
» U.K., China Poised for Deal on World’s Costliest Nuclear Plant
Sub-Saharan Africa
» South Africa: Rape Victims Forced to Witness Husbands’ Water Death
Latin America
» Few in Venezuela Want Bolívars, But No One Can Spare a Dime
» A Year on: Germany’s PEGIDA Radicalised by Refugee Influx
» Bishops Call on British PM to Take More Syria Refugees
» Church of England Bishops Demand Britain Takes 30k More Syrian Refugees
» Early Results Show Anti-Immigrant Party Make Record Gains in Swiss Elections
» Germany Needs Fence on Austrian Border to Limit Migration — Trade Union
» Germany Must Build Border Fence, Says Police Union Chief
» Germany: Thousands Form Candlelit Chain Against Xenophobia Through Berlin
» Germany’s Merkel in Turkey for Refugee Talks
» Germany Ready to Support Turkey’s EU Accession Process, Says Merkel
» ISIS Fighters Could Gain Legal Entry Into EU, Thanks to Europe’s New Schengen Visa Deal for Turkey
» Man Opposed to Illegal Immigration Stabs German Politician
» Migrant Thousands Enter Slovenia After Hungary Closes Border
» Migrants May Bring Epidemics, Warns Polish President
» Migrant Crisis: Slovenia Sets Limit of 2,500 People a Day
» NYC Council Proposes Giving Non-Citizens the Right to Vote
» Pro-Refugee Candidate Stabbed in Cologne, Germany
» Refugees Not ‘Invading’ France, Hollande Blasts
» So Why Are There So Many Young Males Among Refugees?
» Spanish Women Knit Blankets of Love for Syria’s Displaced Thousands
» Swiss Anti-Immigration Party Poised to Win Record Seats in Parliament
» Swiss Parliament Tilts Right Over Migration Fears
» Three Swedish Refugee Centres Hit by Fire
» Obama and Cameron Ratting Out Their Citizens to Islamists

Finnish Defense Facing New Wave of Cuts

HELSINKI — The significant spending increase sought by Finland’s Armed Forces Command (AFC) is unlikely to happen in 2016 as the newly elected center-right government grapples with how to reduce a hefty budget deficit and re-energize a recession-hit economy

Although government parties the Center, National Coalition and the Finns favor raising defense spending against a backdrop of growing aggression by Russia in the region, the fiscal priority is focused on austerity measures to cut the projected US$6 billion budget deficit in 2016

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

Italy: Renzi Says Will Resend Same Budget if EC Nixes it

Package will help poor, pensioners says Poletti

(ANSA) — Rome, October 16 — With his financial house in order and key reforms passed, Premier Matteo Renzi is set to ignore EU diktats and will send the same budget back to the European Commission if Brussels says it should be overhauled.

The European Commission has repeatedly said it does not like the property-tax cuts in the 2016 budget bill, reminding Renzi that its standard recommendations to member States go in quite the opposition direction — to shift the burden from labour and consumption onto property among other things.

The elimination of property tax IMU and property-related service tax TASI has also come in for criticism from the domestic opposition, which argues it is unfair to slash taxes on all residences, including the owners of castles and villas who can well afford to pay them.

Renzi has retorted by saying his government, unlike previous centre-left ones, is out to ease poverty but not at the expense of targeting rich wealth creators. The premier made it plain Friday he would not stand for any Brussels strong-arm tactics, of the kind Italy has so frequently had to submit to in previous years.

He argued that having passed key structural reforms Italy should now be free to set its own fiscal policies, as long as it respects the basic 3% deficit-to-GDP ratio laid down in the Maastricht Treaty.

Speaking to Sole24 Ore financial paper’s Radio 24 in an interview Friday, Renzi stressed that “Brussels is not a teacher giving exams, it’s not qualified to intervene”. “Italy has been psychologically subordinated to eurocrats,” he said. The EU “can advise us, but it can’t tell us which tax to cut. “Italy gives Europe a lot of money, as far as respecting the parameters I would also urge taking a look at other countries’ deficit data”.

In technical terms, he underscored, “there is no such thing as negotiations” (with Brussels), and any government is fully entitled to send back the same budget to the EC whether it likes it or not.

Speaking at Venice’s Ca’ Foscari University later in the day, Renzi reiterated that “we must stop considering the EU a place where you go to get your orders”.

“Every year we give 20 billion euros to the EU and we receive 11…The EU is an extraordinary construction but it must be strengthened and made to live,” Renzi said.

Meanwhile Labour Minister Giuliano Poletti on Friday spelled out exactly how much the budget will help the poor and pensioners.

Poletti said the government will deploy one and a half billion euros to fight poverty in 2016.

Of these, 600 million euros are contained in its draft budget and the rest is being allocated to existing programs.

This will affect “250,000 families and 550,000 children,” Poletti said. As well, a tax break for pensioners will go into effect as of 2017. The measure may be brought forward if the EU agrees to give Italy deficit flexibility, given that it is spending 3.3 billion euros to rescue and host migrants and asylum seekers. Poletti added two billion euros will be needed to cover the government’s so-called women’s option in its pensions packet through 2021. The measure for women is one of four measures on pensions contained in the government’s budget, which cabinet approved yesterday and is now being vetted by the EU. The new budget also contains a two-billion-euro rescue package for 32,000 retirees who were left out of the national pension system on a technicality under a 2011 reform under the previous Mario Monti administration. “This makes a total of 172,000 people, and we now consider the case closed,” he said.

The budget currently amounts to 27 billion euros but this may rise to 30 billion if the EU OKs a clause on the migrant emergency, allowing Italy to raise the budget-to-deficit ration from 2.2% to 2.4%, equivalent to just over three billion euros.

The package has not been without its critics, mainly in the centre-right opposition.

While employers have welcomed it “as the most possible now”, trade unions have slammed it.

The leader of Italy’s biggest and most leftwing union CGIL; Susanna Camusso, returned to the attack Friday, saying the package “only sets aside five euros a month for civil servants”.

The big three trade unions, CGIL, CISL and UIL, announced a “very tough moblisation” in support of the renewal of public-sector contracts given that the resources lined up in the 2016 budget bill (200 million euros) are just “a tip,” a “provocation” and do not guaranteee a dignified contract for public-sector workers. Many public-sector workers have been waiting six or seven years for the renewal of their contracts.

The Bank of Italy (BoI), meanwhile urged the government to take advantage of the country’s fledgling economic recovery and favorable macroeconomic circumstances to cut public debt.

In an economic bulletin the central bank called on policymakers “to fully take the opportunity offered by exceptionally favourable financial and monetary conditions and the gradual strengthening of the recovery”.

“The time frame for rebalancing public accounts must ensure a clear and progressive reduction in debt,” it added.

The central bank confirmed the economy is in recovery and revised upward its July forecasts on 2015 GDP growth. “GDP growth could turn out to be slightly above 0.7%,” it said. It also confirmed a rise in domestic consumption and a slow recovery in productive capital investments. The gradual “reduction in taxes is consistent with the need to lower elevated fiscal pressure” that is hampering growth. “The most directly effective measures are those cutting the burden on production factors” while the abolition of property taxes “could have circumscribed effects on consumption,” the BoI said. Government labor policies have generated at least one fourth of new jobs this year. Of those, one third were directly related to Premier Matteo Renzi’s signature Jobs Act and two-thirds to tax breaks on new full-time permanent hires, according to the central bank.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Rate Debate: Fed Officals Split on Timing of Increase

A rare public split over monetary policy has thrown into question the Federal Reserve’s plans to raise interest rates soon and left economic leaders and markets worldwide on edge.

This week saw two governors of the central bank publicly put distance between themselves and Fed Chair Janet Yellen, who has repeatedly said she expects the first increase in the federal funds rate in nine years to come before the end of 2015.

Daniel Tarullo, a Fed governor rarely given to public comment on the rate issue, said in a television interview on CNBC that he “wouldn’t expect it would be appropriate to raise rates” before 2016…

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

Weak Inflation Puts ECB in Tight Spot at Malta Meeting

Falling prices in the eurozone are turning up the heat on the European Central Bank to prevent the single currency area from slipping into a dangerous downward spiral of deflation.

But many ECB watchers say they do not expect the guardian of the euro to take any action just yet when its decision-making governing council convenes in Malta this coming week.

Consumer prices in the eurozone slipped by 0.1 percent in September, according to data published by Eurostat.

That “heaps pressure on the ECB to step up its stimulative action at its meeting” on Thursday, said IHS Global Insight analyst Howard Archer…

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

Amazon to Sue Fake Reviewers

AMAZON, the world’s largest online marketplace, is suing more than 1,000 people suspected of selling fake reviews in one of the biggest legal actions to uncover hidden identities on the internet.

The web giant is mounting the unprecedented court action to strip 1,114 alleged fake reviewers of their anonymity and force them to pay damages for the “manipulation and deception” of Amazon customers, according to court documents filed in America on Friday.

It is the first time any company has taken action against its own reviewers on this scale, according to legal experts, and could have far-reaching implications for privacy and the way consumer websites are policed.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Amazon Targets 1,114 ‘Fake Reviewers’ In Seattle Lawsuit

Amazon is taking legal action against more than 1,000 people it says have posted fake reviews on its website.

The US online retail giant has filed a lawsuit in Seattle, Washington.

It says its brand reputation is being damaged by “false, misleading and inauthentic” reviews paid for by sellers seeking to improve the appeal of their products.

It comes after Amazon sued a number of websites in April for selling fake reviews.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Briton Who Tried to Set Up Terror Camp in U.S. Jailed

A British man has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for conspiring to set up a terrorist training camp in the United States.

Haroon Aswat, a paranoid schizophrenic from Dewsbury, was sentenced in the US after being extradited there three years ago. He was convicted of travelling there in 1999 at the behest of hate preacher Abu Hamza with the intent of setting up the camp.

He spent two months in Seattle trying to buy land for the camp, and if the plan had succeeded would have provided religious training there.

He later travelled to Pakistan where he met two men who would later go on to be bombers in the 7/7 attack in London.

Despite the 20-year sentence he is likely only to serve six, having already spend a decade in custody. The Independent says he will also apply to serve his sentence in a UK prison, a move the judge would reportedly support.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

CNN Anchor Demands Americans “Stop Swooning Over Putin”

We’ll just put this bluntly: when you, as a country, do something incredibly stupid from a foreign policy perspective, you open the door for your global critics and adversaries to i) call you out on it publicly, and ii) use your gross incompetence and general disregard for anything that even approximates common sense, to their geopolitical advantage.

And make no mistake, in Syria, Washington, Riyadh, and Doha did something incredibly stupid.

They financed, armed, and trained a hodgepodge of Sunni extremists in Syria in an attempt to destabilize a regime that was deemed to be unfriendly to the interests of the West and its regional allies.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but from the perspective of human suffering, the results have been simply horrific: hundreds of thousands dead and millions displaced…

So one could be forgiven for being slightly enamored with the Russians at this juncture because in one extraordinarily elegant geopolitical chess move, Vladimir Putin has all at once i) exposed the fact that perhaps the US has ulterior motives for wanting to (gasp) keep ISIS around, ii) marked a triumphant return for Russia to the world stage, iii) strengthened Moscow’s relationship with Tehran ahead of the latter’s re-emergence as a force in the world of oil exporters, and iv) effectively restored Bashar al-Assad on the way to establishing a major Russian presence in the Mid-East.

And that’s in the space of, oh, let’s just call it three weeks.

This has been nothing short of a humiliation for Washington and just as Beijing simply instructed people not to sell when the SHCOMP rout embarrassed the Communist Party, the US wants you to know that it’s enough already with the Putin worship. Here’s CNN’s Fareed Zakaria: demanding that you to “Stop swooning over Putin”:

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Democratic Congresswoman Claims Global Warming Will Force American Women Into Prostitution

(NaturalNews) Climate change hoaxers will says just about anything to push the nonsensical and unproven theory that the activities of industrialized mankind are pushing the earth to its warming limits.

Now, one senior House Democrat has even insisted that unless something is done to mitigate this phony problem, women the world over will have to sell their bodies for sex just to eat, as in, prostitution. But she doesn’t call it that.

Rep. Barbara Lee of California, in stating that so-called “climate change” will hit women harder than men, went on to to claim that it will cause women to engage in “transactional sex” to provide food and water for their families.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Jesse Ventura Says US Government is ‘Fascist Regime,’ Calls for Change

The United States is a fascist government that is controlled by large corporations in pursuit of money, former Minnesota governor Jesse Ventura told Xinhua in an interview.

Ventura, who is a former governor of Minnesota, US Army veteran, actor, author and former professional wrestler, is also an avid political activist.

He pointed out that the wealthiest people in the United States essentially rule the country, because they’re the one who finance presidential campaigns, which results in the appointment of their political and economic interests.

“We’re fascists now because the definition of fascism is when corporations take over the government. Our Democrats and Republicans are all bought off by the corporations so therefore the corporations call the shots,” Ventura explained.

The only way to stop this fascist regime is to elect someone other than the Democrats and the Republicans, Ventura said, adding that the entire US government is a huge system based on the illusion of democracy.

“The two parties control the entire system. We don’t really choose our president; they do, because they handpick who they are going to put forward to you to be the president,” Ventura said.

Ventura also touched on US policies in the Middle East, stating that Washington would never care about the region, if it didn’t have oil. He gave the example of the US invasion in Iraq:

“We don’t care who governs Iraq. What we care about is the oil that’s in Iraq.”

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

McDonald’s in a ‘Deep Depression’ And ‘Facing Its Final Days’

McDonald’s franchisees believe the brand is in a “deep depression” and could be facing its “final days,” according to a new survey.

“We are in the throes of a deep depression, and nothing is changing,” one franchisee wrote in response to the survey by Nomura analyst Mark Kalinowski. “Probably 30% of operators are insolvent.”

Another wrote, “The CEO is sowing the seeds of our demise. We are a quick-serve fast-food restaurant, not a fast casual like Five Guys or Chipotle. The system may be facing its final days.”

More than a dozen franchisees expressed frustration with McDonald’s management, saying CEO Steve Easterbrook’s turnaround plan — which includes initiatives like all-day breakfast and a shift to digital ordering kiosks — is a distraction from McDonald’s core issues, like food quality and customer service.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Obama Urges Reform of ‘Unfair’ US Criminal Justice System

President Barack Obama urged reform of the US criminal justice system Saturday, saying much of it “remains unfair” and that punishments should correspond to the severity of crimes.

“The United States is home to five percent of the world’s population, but 25 percent of the world’s prisoners,” Obama said in his weekly radio address. “Every year, we spend $80 billion to keep people locked up.”

The president said the reason the United States has such a high prison population — 2.2 million — is that more non-violent offenders have been put behind bars over the past decades than ever before…

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

Swine Flu Vaccine Far More Dangerous Than Swine Flu Itself

(NaturalNews) A closer look at the overall infection and death rate from confirmed cases of H1N1 influenza during the 2009—2010 “pandemic,” as declared by the World Health Organization (WHO), has revealed that the widely administered vaccine for swine flu is far more deadly than the disease itself. As it turns out, far more people were injured with permanent brain damage, narcolepsy or even death from the vaccine compared to the number of injuries and deaths directly attributed to H1N1.

One out of every 16,000 people who received the Pandemrix vaccine (manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline) for swine flu, according to the International Business Times, developed narcolepsy or cataplexy, a condition that results in a person not being able to sleep for more than 90 minutes at a time, and falling unexpectedly unconscious throughout the day with no warning. The condition is a marker of brain damage, in fact, which is why the UK government agreed to pay out 60 million pounds, or about $92 million, to victims.

Roughly 60 million people received the Pandemrix vaccine for swine flu during the declared pandemic, which means that nearly 4,000 people likely now suffer from narcolepsy or cataplexy as a result. Meanwhile, the actual death rate from confirmed cases of swine flu was minimal, with only 71 confirmed deaths in the UK between April 2009 and February 2010. In the U.S., the reported number was a bit higher, but it has since been revealed that the official numbers were inflated.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Canada to Hold Federal Elections Monday

Stephen Harper’s nine-year tenure may draw to a close as Canada’s voters will head to the polls on Monday to elect 338 lawmakers and the next prime minister.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The ruling Conservative party faces challengers in the leftist New Democratic Party (NDP) headed by Thomas Mulcair and the centrist Liberal party led by Justin Trudeau. The three front-runners are followed by the Bloc Quebecois, Green party and Strength in Democracy.

As of mid-Sunday, the CBC Poll Tracker placed Justin Trudeau and his Liberal party ahead with 36.3 percent, leading in 17 consecutive surveys to date.

Harpers’ conservatives are 5.2 percent behind, followed by a nearly 10-percent margin separating the NDP.

If Monday’s vote matches poll numbers, the Liberal party is on pace to win 140 seats in the House of Commons, 30 short of a needed majority. The Liberal party currently holds 36 mandates.

The Conservative party is poised to give up 39 seats to win 120, and the NDP from 95 to 74 seats.

Nearly 15 million, or 61 percent of all eligible voters, cast their ballots in the 2011 federal election that gave Harper his third term in office. There are no term limits imposed on Canadian prime ministers.

This year’s 79-day election campaign is the longest in the country’s history.

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

‘Arabic’ Sign in Swedish Station ‘Unreadable’

Recently erected signs up at Malmö Central station are supposed to warn travellers that they must keep an eye on their luggage. The trouble is, the Arabic translation is utter nonsense, reports Swedish newspaper, Sydsvenskan.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Cameron Vows to Allocate $7.7 Mln to Groups Confronting Extremism in UK

UK Prime Minister David Cameron pledged to allocate 5 million British pounds ($7.7 million) for groups tackling extremism to expand the scale of their activities, the Downing Street said in a statement Sunday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — “The government will invest £5 million this year to build a national network of grassroots organisations to challenge all forms of extremist ideology,” the statement read.

The announcement comes on the eve of the publication of the country’s new Counter-Extremism Strategy.

“[The strategy] sets out our new approach to tackle this poison: to vigorously counter the ideology that underpins it; to take on the violent and non-violent parts of the creed; actively supporting the mainstream voices to rise above those of the extremists; and tackle the segregation and feelings of alienation that can help provide fertile ground for extremist messages to take root,” Cameron was quoted as saying in the statement.

His speech comes as more and more Britons join extremist militants in the Middle East as foreign fighters.

According to the latest data from the UK Metropolitan Police, some 700 UK citizens are estimated to have left for Syria to fight alongside jihadists. Meanwhile, the British Intelligence services claim the actual figure is likely to be three times higher.

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

Chinese President Xi Jinping Insists State Visit Includes a Trip to an English Pub

The lunch with David Cameron will mark a rare moment of relaxation in a visit fraught with political tension over human rights and China’s role in running Britain’s nuclear power stations.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Czech President Bemoans Islamic Veil for Covering Up Beauty

Czech President Milos Zeman on Friday again lashed out at migrants from the Middle East and Africa, skewering the full Islamic veil for covering up female beauty.

“We’ll be deprived of women’s beauty, because they’ll be covered from head to toe,” Zeman said in a chat with employees of a butcher’s shop in the eastern village of Lechotice.

“This would obviously be an advantage for some women, but they’re few and far between,” the 71-year-old added, quoted by local media.

The outspoken leftwinger is known for his controversial remarks. He once called members of the Russian punk rock group Pussy Riot “bitches” and said the government had “…

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

EU ‘Has Legal Basis to Intervene in Country Economies’

Renzi said ‘Brussels not a teacher giving exams’

(ANSA) — Brussels, October 16 — European Commission sources said Friday the EU has a legal basis to intervene in the economic choices of single governments. “We have a legal basis, all the States have signed…the Stability and Growth Pact,” said spokespeople for European Commissioner for the Euro Valdis Dombrovskis and European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs Pierre Moscovici. The EU is vetting Italy’s draft budget, and Premier Matteo Renzi said earlier that “Brussels is not a teacher giving exams, it’s not qualified to intervene”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Four Iraqis Charged in Alleged Swiss ISIS Cell

Swiss authorities have charged four Iraqi nationals with planning a terrorist attack in Europe on behalf of the Islamic State group.

Though details of the planned attack were sketchy, Switzerland’s attorney general confirmed on Friday that IS “was to claim responsibility (for) these plans if successful”.

The four Iraqis, ranging in ages from 29 to 34, face charges of participating in or supporting a criminal organisation and preparing a terrorist attack. They also are accused of multiple counts of depicting violence and illegally staying in the country.

“Given the international dimension, various countries are affected by this case,” authorities said in a statement. “The Office of the Attorney General is accordingly in contact with the law enforcement authorities of various states. The cooperation with the US Department of Justice is particularly close.”

The cooperation marks the first time that Swiss and US officials have activated a 2006 treaty that calls for establishing joint investigation teams in the fight against terrorism.

Police first arrested three of the four Iraqis, ranging in age from 29 to 34, in northeastern Switzerland in March and April 2014. They have been in custody since then. The criminal investigation expanded to include a fourth Iraqi in July 2015.

He is suspected of traveling to Syria to bring radio equipment to IS, the attorney general’s office said, and of trying to hide his Facebook connections to a high-ranking IS member.

Intercepted calls

After a Western counterpart intercepted the suspects’ phone calls, the tips went to the Swiss Federal Intelligence Service, which then alerted the Federal Criminal Police.

The three Iraqis who were initially arrested had allegedly helped about 40 jihadists in Switzerland travel to join IS in the regions it controls within Syria and Iraq. They also allegedly tried to obtain toxic gas and explosives to mount attacks.

Swiss investigators have been working on the case with US and other European authorities.

One of the four men had joined a predecessor organisation of IS in 2004 and made contacts in Syria in 2011 with the Syrian branch of IS that included another one of the suspects, the attorney general’s office said.

“After entering Switzerland at the beginning of 2012, he maintained contact with this group and forged plans for attacks with another accused and a third party who was to travel to Switzerland from abroad,” the statement said.

“The three accused individuals also aided and abetted smuggling further IS followers to Europe, assumed coordination tasks, disseminated propaganda for the actions of the terrorist organisation, gave instructions and also provided operative advice amongst other things,” it said.

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

Swiss People’s Party on Track for Record Seats

Switzerland’s largest party, the populist rightwing Swiss People’s Party, is set for record results in Sunday’s parliamentary election, with media projecting it will take a third of seats in the lower house.

Along with advances made by the centre-right Liberal Party, Switzerland’s third largest party, SVP’s gains should tip the scale in parliament from the centre-left towards a centre-right majority.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Thousands Rally in Spain for Release of Basque Separatists

Thousands took to the streets of San Sebastian in northern Spain on Saturday to call for the release of Arnaldo Otegi, the jailed head of the Basque independence Sortu party.

Otegi, 57, is a former member of the armed separatist group ETA, which is blamed for more than 800 killings in a four-decade campaign to create a Basque homeland in northern Spain and southwestern France.

More than 10,000 demonstrators marched behind a large Basque-language banner that read, “Free Arnaldo and Rafa”, referring to Rafa Diez, the head of the Basque pro-independence trade union LAB, according to an AFP photographer at the scene.

They shouted pro-independence chants and held up Basque flags and that of the Navarre region of northern Spain, peacefully demonstrating for around an hour along a main street in the city…

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

Why German Protestants Will Stop Converting Muslims

BERLIN — Barbara Rudolph, head of the Ecumenical Department of the Protestant Church in Germany’s Rheinland region, recalls speaking some time ago with Austrian sociologist Mouhanad Khorchide at an academic seminar. Khorchide, who holds the chair for Islamic Religious Studies at the University of Muenster, was explaining his belief that God loves all people — no matter their religion, or lack thereof — and that God only expects compassion and kindness towards others, not pious dogmas.

Rudolph asked herself why she should wish to convert such a good man. “He would have been well within his rights to view that as a slap in the face,” she recalls.

Rudolph has taken that idea to the logical next conclusion, drafting a policy document sanctioned by the Regional Protestant Church regarding the relationship between Christians and Muslims, which is being sent out to all parishes this week. The findings outlined in this paper are radical, to say the least. The Church does not only categorically rejects the conversion of reform-minded Muslims but outright dismisses all missionary work directed at Muslims…

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

Egypt: Sisi’s New Capital, Building to Begin in January

Project of administrative city developed with Chinese company

(ANSA) — CAIRO, OCTOBER 13 — Will the new Egyptian administrative capital be a metropolis in the desert or just a mirage? The project, announced a couple of months ago by President Abdel Fattah al Sisi, is about to be launched. The first stage of building of the city that will emerge on the road from Cairo to the Red Sea is in fact set to begin at the beginning of January and should last about two years, announced president Sisi himself during a meeting with ministers and experts in the field.

The project will be eco-friendly, it will boast solar systems and parks and will be fitted with state-of-the-art technology, communication and infrastructure.

The city will host government institutions — Parliament, ministries and the presidential palace — but also commercial activities and a World Trade Centre.

Eighty-five per cent of the work-force employed will be local.

Cairo signed a memorandum of understanding with ‘China State Construction Engineering Corporation’, a Chinese company which will be entrusted with the building planning of the metropolis, in September, after an UAE company, Capital City Partners, backed out.

According to the project, illustrated on March 13 at the Conference for Egypt’s economic development, which took place in Sharm El Sheikh, the “new capital” should host approximately five million people.

A large airport, 1,1 million homes, 40 thousand hotel rooms, malls, 1.250 religious establishments and 2,000 schools are also going to be built and the new capital will become a new satellite-city.

The dimensions of the new town are comparable to the ones of Singapore.

The project, expected to cost a total of 45 billion dollars, should be completed in 5-7 years.

The idea of Egypt’s new ‘Pharaoh’ is an attempt to relaunch employment and decongest the currently over-populated capital creating an administrative centre removed from big urban developments and therefore easier to control.

A truly pharaonic plan.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

AP Interview: Iran Preparing for ‘Tsunami’ Of Foreign Tourists in Post-Sanctions Era

Iran’s vice president told The Associated Press on Sunday his country is preparing for a “tsunami” of foreign tourists as Iran and world powers are set to begin implementing a landmark nuclear deal that will lift sanctions in return for curbs on Iran’s nuclear program.

Masoud Soltanifar, who is also Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization chief, said President Hassan Rouhani’s moderate policies and the easing of visa rules are opening the door for the return of foreign tourists to Iran.

A country rich in historical and cultural treasures largely unseen by Western eyes, Iran will unveil an investment package of 1,300 projects in the coming days to attract foreign investment and boost the badly-hit tourism industry. Iran is home to 19 UNESCO-registered sites.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Cuban FM Refutes Reports on Alleged Deployment of Cuban Troops in Syria

Havana has dismissed recent media reports about alleged deployment of a Cuban military contingent in Syria, a statement on the country’s Foreign Ministry’s website said.

MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) — On Wednesday, US media outlet Fox News reported, citing an anonymous US official and “evidence from intelligence reports,” that an unspecified number of Cuban paramilitary and special force units were on the ground in Syria.

“Director General for Bilateral Affairs of the Cuban Foreign Ministry Gerardo Penalver Portal categorically denies and refutes the irresponsible and unfounded information about the alleged presence of Cuban troops in Syria, circulating in some media outlets,” the statement issued Saturday read.

Earlier this week, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest stated that the United States had seen no indication that the Cuban government deployed any military to fight the Islamic State terrorists in Syria.

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

Full Metal Retard: US Launches “Performance-Based” Ammo Paradrop Program for Make-Believe “Syrian Arabs”

On Monday, the Pentagon proudly announced that it had “successfully” delivered 50 tons (yes, tons) of ammo to rebels fighting the Assad regime in Syria.

Before going any further, it’s important to note that the move to publicly deliver ammunition to the groups fighting the Russians set off alarm bells even among the most mainstream of media with CNN running the following headline as though the notion that the conflict is just another proxy war were somehow “news”: “Syria’s ‘proxy war’ rages in towns near Aleppo, Syria.”

So “all” it took was for Russia to invade and for the US to brag about handing “tons” of ammo to the very groups Moscow is fighting for the clueless public to come to the shocking realization that Washington is effectively at war with Moscow in Syria.

Obviously that’s not news, as it’s been clear to anyone who knows anything about geopolitics for years, but what is news is the extent to which the ammo paradrops mark a new low point for Washington in terms of countering Assad.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Hezbollah Says Presence in Syria Greater Than Ever Before

The head of Lebanon’s Shiite movement Hezbollah said on Sunday his group was fighting a “critical and definitive battle” in Syria with a greater presence than ever before.

Hassan Nasrallah spoke during an event commemorating the death of leading Hezbollah figure Hassan Hussein al-Hajj, known as Abu Muhammad.

According to Al-Manar television, which aired the speech, al-Hajj died on October 10 fighting in Sahl al-Ghab, a strategic plain in northwest Syria where Hezbollah has dispatched fighters in support of the embattled regime of Bashar al-Assad…

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

Inside Yemen’s Forgotten War

The BBC’s Gabriel Gatehouse has just returned from Yemen, where he had rare access to the scale of the humanitarian crisis caused by what some are calling the “forgotten war”.

The bombing campaign in the skies over Yemen is in its sixth month now. Every day, residents of the capital, Sanaa, listen nervously for the rumble of jets. They know what will follow: a flash in the sky, a sickening pause, then the thud and boom of explosions as the missiles strike.

The aim of the Saudi-led coalition is to oust Houthi rebels from the city. The Houthis took Sanaa last year, with the help of forces loyal to Yemen’s ousted former president Ali Abdullah Saleh and the support of Iran.

In response, Saudi Arabia, Iran’s regional rival, has imposed a blockade on the north of the country, controlling what comes in by land, sea and air.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Iraqi Forces Advance Against is on Three Fronts

Iraqi forces advanced on three fronts against the Islamic State group Sunday, flushing out pockets of resistance in and around Baiji and closing in on Ramadi and Hawijah, officers said.

Iraqi security and allied paramilitary forces last week launched a broad offensive on Baiji, about 200 kilometres (120 miles) north of Baghdad.

The city and nearby refinery — the country’s largest — have been one of the worst flashpoints since IS launched a sweeping offensive across Iraq’s Sunni Arab heartland in June 2014.

Anti-IS forces, including thousands from the Popular Mobilisation (Hashed al-Shaabi) force that includes many Tehran-backed Shiite militias, have reconquered most of Baiji and its surroundings…

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

Naming Names: ‘Non-ISIL’ Actually Means ‘Al-Qaeda’ In Syria

While pointing the finger at Russia for targeting “non-ISIL” militants, Washington remains mute about the fact that these “non-ISIL” actors Russia’s Air Force is aiming against are affiliates of the al-Qaeda cell Jabhat al-Nusra, US investigative journalist Gareth Porter notes.

Trying to score some political points and gain moral superiority over Moscow, Washington’s warhawks are accusing Russia of bombing non-ISIL positions in Syria; but remarkably, US politicians remain silent about the fact that these very territories have been occupied by al-Qaeda’s infamous Syrian franchise, Jabhat al-Nusra or al-Nusra Front, US investigative journalist and author Gareth Porter underscores.

“[Western media’s] framing of the issue fundamentally misrepresents the situation in Syria by conjuring up a non-existent powerful US-backed ‘moderate’ force while diverting attention from the real threat posed by al-Qaeda’s Syrian franchise. The Russians are not hitting some imaginary set of ‘moderate’ Syrian armed groups opposing the Assad regime; they are overwhelmingly focused on targeting the military command in which al-Nusra Front is the central strategic force,” Porter elaborated in his article for Middle East Eye.

According to the maps, pinpointing Russia’s strikes in Syria, the Russian Air Force has been focused on Idlib province, the adjoining Hama province, and areas of Latakia province near Idlib.

Remarkably, the Idlib province is the region taken in March 2015 by the al-Nusra Front and the “Army of Conquest” linked to it, the investigative journalist noted.

“That victory in Idlib was widely reported at the time to be the biggest turning point in the Syrian war in well over two years and to represent by far the most serious challenge to the Assad regime since the beginning of the war,” Ported reminded, adding that Western media sources somehow failed to inform their audience, that the al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra and its close jihadist ally Ahrar al-Sham accounted for 90 percent of militants which took part in the operation.

Furthermore, the so-called Army of Conquest was created by Saudi Arabia and Qatar with the US’ full approval in order to deal a substantial blow to Assad’s forces. The jihadi group was equipped with TOW anti-tank missiles supplied by the CIA and the Saudis. However, it was Jabhat al-Nusra, who mostly benefitted from the CIA program, Porter emphasized.

“It is easy to understand why the Obama administration is not interested in talking about the role of al-Nusra in the present Syrian political-military situation,” he remarked.

Citing US journalist Liz Sly, Porter pointed out the US’ covert operation to provide the Army of Conquest with the TOW missiles was aimed at putting “sufficient pressure on Assad’s forces to persuade him to compromise but not so much that his government would precipitously collapse and leave a dangerous power vacuum.”

The Obama administration is playing a dangerous game in the region, the investigative journalist stressed, lambasting the White House for its obvious recklessness.

“That is why no one in the administration or the news media is discussing the reality that the Russian offensive is targeting the biggest jihadist threat to the Assad regime,” Porter concluded.

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

Putin ‘Strong and Shrewd’, Obama Fails, Lacks Plan in Syria — US Poll

Half of the US population believes that Obama failed in Syria compared to Russian president Vladimir Putin, a Fox News poll said on Wednesday.

Most US citizens expressed skepticism towards Barack Obama’s statement of Russian intervening in Syria as a weakness and disapproved of his lack of clear plan over the situation in Middle East, a Fox News poll has recently revealed.

Fifty-three percent of people claimed that it’s Putin who gained the upper hand in Syria, while only 22 percent said Obama took control over the situation in the region.

Obama’s estimation of the Russian military operation against ISIL in Syria as a “weak and desperate” has been supported only by 29 percent of respondents whereas 46 percent consider Russia as “strong and shrewd”.

The poll says that record-breaking 70 percent of Americans doubt the US has any coherent plan on how to deal with crisis in Syria. The US has been bombing the self-proclaimed Islamic State terrorist group since December 2014, however there was very little success in destroying any targets.

Mid-September marked the time when Putin launched a military operation against ISIL in Syria upon the request of Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad, which Obama has called an act of weakness.

According to new poll, some 52 percent of Americans fully rebuke Obama for his actions in Middle East, saying he is a “weak and indecisive leader” on the world stage.

The Fox News survey was conducted from October 10-12, interviewing more than 1,000 people from all over the county.

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

Report: 3-Vehicle Crash in Central Iran Kills 20 Illegal Afghan Migrants, 10 Injured

Iranian state TV says a car crash in central Iran has killed 20 illegal Afghan migrants and injured 10 others.

The report said the crash involving a car, a mini-bus and a truck happened Sunday evening on the road linking Tehran to the city of Qom, located 135 kilometers (85 miles) to the south.

State TV quotes Mohammad Hossein Hamidi, Iran’s chief of road police, as saying the victims were Afghan migrants who illegally crossed the border into Iran. It did not say what caused the crash.

Iran has one of the world’s worst traffic safety records, with more than 400,000 accidents and nearly 18,000 deaths on its roads every year.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Russia Shows Early Success, New Capabilities in Syria

MOSCOW — After a week of heavy operations over Syria, Russia’s Air Force is scaling back its efforts so it can analyze its progress and identify new targets after the Ministry of Defense last week claimed to have helped the Syrian regime push back opposition forces.

Moving into the third week of Russia’s surprise aerial intervention in Syria’s four-and-a-half-year-old civil war, Moscow has not only claimed early successes, but demonstrated that efforts to modernize its military are yielding real benefits and restoring lost capabilities…

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

Saudi Arabia: Israel: Egypt ‘Knocking on Putin’s Door,’ Not Obama’s

Some of the US’s major allies appear more and more convinced that Barack Obama is losing his political influence on the Syrian conflict and the fight against the self-proclaimed Islamic State terror group, according an analysis in the US media.

Key US partners are increasingly fixing their eyes on Moscow rather than Washington, writes Dan de Luce, a columnist for Foreign Policy.

According to de Luce, the recent visit of Saudi Arabia’s defense minister Mohammed bin Salman to the Russian city of Sochi showcases on the one hand to what extent the “power dynamics” in the Middle East has changed, and on the other — that, in US allies’ eyes, President Putin is close to taking Barack Obama’s place of “regional kingmaker.” The author pointed out that high-profile representatives of Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries are now “knocking on Putin’s door instead of that of the Oval Office.”

The visit of the Saudi minister, de Luce noted, suggests Riyadh is looking into the opportunity of an agreement under which Syrian president Bashar al-Assad would stay in power for a longer period of time in exchange for the creation of Russian-Saudi joint forces in the fight against IS.

“If the Saudi visit was coordinated with the US, that would be one thing, but if it wasn’t, it was the Saudis again saying to us, ‘You’re irrelevant,’“ FP quoted former US ambassador to Syria Ryan Crocker as saying.

The US’ key allies, alarmed by the recent Iran nuclear agreement between Tehran and the P5+1 powers, seem to be arriving at the conclusion that Obama is losing his significance and influence in terms of the Syrian war and fight with IS.

Despite the fact that the US maintains long-term alliances in the Middle East and has huge military and economic might, some of their partners are seeking reassurance amid ongoing events in Syria, and are probing into Moscow-proposed initiatives.

For instance, the visit of the Saudi defense minister to Russia coincided with that of a senior military representative from the United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, de Luce added.

Another crucial regional ally of the US, Egypt, is also attempting to improve relations with Moscow. The country’s leader Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has four times visited Russia since coming to power in 2013, and has also invited Putin to Cairo once. At the same time, the Egyptian president has made only two trips to the US, and was supposed to be hosted at the White House only once.

Israel has also joined the list of those “knocking on Putin’s door,” de Luce noted, referring to the late-September meeting of president Putin with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The White House, in its turn, has hopes that Russia will stumble in Syria. Vali Nasr, a former senior State Department official, argued that if Moscow achieves its objective and transforms its wins on the battlefield to a political resolution of the war, it will eventually “translate into much more regional influence [for Russia] in the Middle East.”

“And also many other countries in other regions of the world may come to the conclusion that it’s not America that’s the indispensable nation,” he concluded.

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

Saudis Poke the Russian Bear, Start Oil War in Eastern Europe

If the Saudis could use oil prices to force Moscow into ceding support for Bashar al-Assad in Syria, then the West and its regional allies could get on with facilitating his ouster by way of arming and training rebels. Once Assad was gone, a puppet government could be installed (after some farce of an election that would invariably pit two Western-backed candidates against each other) then Riyadh, Doha, and Ankara could work with the new government in Damascus to craft energy deals that would not only be extremely lucrative for all involved, but would also help to break Gazprom’s iron grip on energy supplies to Europe.

Those are the “ancillary diplomatic benefits” mentioned in The Times piece.

Only it didn’t work out that way.

Instead, Russia just kind of rolled with the economic punches (so to speak) and while there’s probably only so much pain Moscow can take between low oil prices and Western sanctions, Putin has apparently not yet reached the threshold.

Meanwhile, the Saudis have found that it’s taking longer than expected for Riyadh to realize another expected benefit from driving crude prices into the floor. Bankrupting the relatively uneconomic US shale space would go a long way towards solidifying Saudi Arabia’s market share, but thanks to wide open capital markets, Riyadh has effectively gotten itself into a war with the Fed. The longer ZIRP persists, the longer otherwise insolvent US producers can stay in business. In short: until the cost of capital starts to rise, there will likely still be investors of some stripe willing to finance some of these drillers.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Support for Putin’s Bombing Campaign Among Syrians in Russia

From far away in his adopted homeland of Russia, Syrian Wail Dzhinid has watched approvingly as President Vladimir Putin’s bombing campaign in his war-torn native country has unfolded on his television screen.

Dzhinid, who has lived in Moscow for over two decades and has a Russian wife and two sons, says Moscow’s airstrikes in Syria are “very good” and help the Syrian people rather than the Kremlin’s ally President Bashar al-Assad.

While vast numbers of Syrians have embarked on the dangerous voyage to seek safety in the European Union, those in the small community living in Russia mostly have longstanding diplomatic or family ties to the country…

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

Sweet Harmony: Syrian Opposition ‘Sharing Experience’ With Jihadists

Thirteen members of the Free Syrian Army have defected to the Islamist group Jabhat al-Nusra in what a FSA commander described as an “experience-sharing act.”

Abu Hashem, the leader of one of the largest factions of the Free Syrian Army, which is viewed in the West as part of the moderate opposition, justified his men’s defection by the need to fight the common enemy — the forces loyal to President Bashar Assad.

“Thirteen members of our brigade have joined the ranks of Jebhat an-Nusra [Jabhat al-Nusra or Nusra Front] to share their combat experience… with their brethren fighting our common enemy — the government forces,” Abu Hashem was quoted as saying by an opposition website.

Abu Hashem’s 500-strong brigade, armed, among other things, with Grad and Katyusha multiple-launch rocket systems and artillery pieces, has been fighting the government forces in the country’s northwestern Idlib province for several months now.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said earlier that Moscow did not consider the Free Syrian Army as a terrorist organization and was ready to establish contact with its leaders.

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

Ford Starts Producing Cars With Russian Engines

Investments into the project totaled $275 mln.

Ford Sollers plant in Russia’s Naberezhnye Chelny city produced the first vehicle equipped with a Russian engine made at the new motor works in Elabuga, Ford Sollers VP for public relations Elizaveta Novikova told TASS on Thursday. “A new Ford Fiesta, the most affordable Ford car in Russia, became the first Ford car with a Russian engine. Vehicles with Russian engines will be available for orders by the end of this year or the beginning of the next year,” Novikova said.

The motor works in Elabuga was officially launched early in September 2015. The plant will initially produce 105,000 engines a year with the capacity to grow to 200,000 later. The plant will produce 1.6 l capacity engines intended for more than 30% of Ford cars manufactured in Russia, including Fiesta, Focus and EcoSport models.

Ford Sollers is the joint venture established on a parity basis by Ford Motor Company and Russia’s OAO Sollers. The company has three production sites in Russia.

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

Nothing Good Will Come of it: Ukrainian Cops to Learn From US Police

The United States is giving money to Ukraine to reform its police force and help get rid of corruption. Well, it would have been better to simply start handing out money in envelopes right away, at least this way Washington would save its time, RIA Novosti correspondent Gabriela Chalabova said.

American taxpayers will be paying for police reforms in Ukraine. The goal is to make the Ukrainian police to match the US police standards.

“We will work together to develop a kind of government that would be free from corruption and respects human rights,” the US Ambassador to Ukraine said while signing the document.

The only problem is that the police in the United States aren’t as competent as one might think. Real US policemen are extremely trigger-happy: at least 1,700 people were killed in the United States over the past year. At the same time, most investigations into police shootings don’t lead to perpetrators getting convicted.

Now imagine the work of US policemen in Ukraine. Who will they instruct? A lot of neo-Nazi youth and various sorts of former military personnel, who suffer from the Donbass war syndrome, might come into the new Ukrainian police force. According to Olga Bogomolets, the head of the healthcare committee in the Ukrainian Rada, there are over 5,500 soldiers with the syndrome. The arrival of these mentally unstable war veterans could lead to a “new bloodbath” in Ukraine, this time under the police jurisdiction.

Last year, Ukraine was ranked 142nd (tied with Uganda and the Comoros Islands) on the list of the most corrupt countries in the world, conducted by Transparency International (TI). Corruption exists in many spheres of Ukrainian public services, but the most corrupt are the legal system, the police and the health services, as well as the parliament itself, according to TI.

Most of the reforms recently introduced in Ukraine at the request of international donors have not led to any positive changes in the country since the authorities’ dominant motivation in introducing the legislation was to get more money from the West.

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

Russia and India to Work on 5th-Gen Upgrade to Su-35 Fighter

Russia and India have signed an agreement to jointly develop a fifth-generation upgrade of the Su-35 Super Flanker multirole fighter, according to a report published March 8 on Virginia-based military affairs website Defense News.

The fighter will be a fifth-generation fighter like the US Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor and F-35 Lightning II, as opposed to the fourth-generation version of the Su-35 over which Russia and China are currently negotiating a deal.

The Su-35 Super Flanker will be unable to compete with other “genuine” fifth-generation fighters and China does not need to get caught up in a game of one-upmanship with India and Russia, said an expert cited by China’s nationalistic tabloid Global Times.

Fifth-Generation Su-35S

Defense News cited a Russian military insider as stating that Moscow and New Delhi have signed an agreement to design what Russia is calling the fifth-generation version of the Su-35 in India, which will see an Indian variant of the fighter created called the Su-35S. Sergey Chemezov, CEO of Russian state-run tech export corporation Rostec, was cited by the website as saying, “We have been negotiating and have signed the intention protocol for the Su-35…Now we are working on designing ideas for this contract and on creating a manufacturing platform for the aircraft of the fifth generation.”

The shift from the fourth-generation Su-35, currently in service with the Russian Air Force, to the fifth-generation Su-35S will necessitate a large upgrade. The report in Defense News questioned the ability of the Su-35S to bear comparison with the F-35. An Indian Air Force official said Russia has pitched the Su-35S several times over the last six months, stating that it can replace the Indian Air Force’s MiG-21 and MiG-27 fighters, set to be retired from service in seven to eight years.

Russia and India have already worked together on the development of a fifth-generation stealth fighter, the PAK FA T-50. The Defense News report suggested that the reason Russia has suddenly announced the development program for the stealth fighter is because they are trying to undercut France following the refusal of Paris to provide Russia with two Mistral-class amphibious assault ships. In 2012, New Delhi decided to buy 126 Dassault Rafale multirole fighters from the French company but they have been unable to reach a final agreement due to the technology transfer involved and the price. A Russian industry source cited in the report said the Su-35S will cost only US$85 million, very competitive when compared with the Rafale, and poses a threat to the deal between France and India. A report in the New Delhi-based Economic Times previously stated that India’s air force command considers the Russian fighter and the Rafale to be complementary and that the former does not replace the need for the latter.

China and the Fourth-Generation Su-35

There had previously been a lot of buzz in the media about China becoming the first country to take delivery of an Su-35. According to the previous report on the website, China is set to sign a deal on May 19 to buy 24 Su-35 fighters from Russia. A Russian official has stated that the deal involves the fourth-generation Su-35, not the fifth-generation Su-35S. The official added, however, that China will be the first country in the world to buy the plane.

The Defense News report did not specify the details of the differences between the Su-35 and the Su-35S. However, a Chinese military expert cited by the Global Times stated that the fifth-generation fighter will likely be based on the Su-30MKI that Russia and India developed together and will be equipped with advanced fifth-generation fighter avionics purchased by India, including active electronically scanned array radar, an infrared sensor for longer range targets and a custom tactical data link suited to the needs of the Indian Air Force, along with anti-electrical interference equipment. The source also stated that the fighter likely has limited stealth capabilities, including metal plating on the hood of the cabin and stealth materials coating the air inlets. Stealth capabilities hinge mostly on the exterior design of a fighter, however, he said. The area of the fifth generation F-22 that reflects radar is just 1 square meter and Russian aircraft maker Sukhoi has stated that the area of Su-30 series fighters that reflects radar is around 20 sq m.

As the Su-35S will not involve a total rehaul of the outer structure of the series, it is not possible for the Su-35S to match the stealth capabilities of the F-22. The move to brand the Su-35S a “fifth-generation” fighter, therefore, seems a little more driven by propaganda than reality, according to Global Times. Given that the Su-30MKI went into production in 2002, six years after India and Russia signed the joint development agreement on the aircraft, the Su-35S will likely take a sustained period of time to develop and undergo tests before it can be commissioned or sold.

Can the Fourth- to Fifth-Generation Gap be Bridged?

A Chinese military expert stated that fourth-generation fighters can be upgraded to give them capabilities approaching those of fifth-generation fighters. This is most evident in the area of avionics, if enough investment is made, as with sufficient funds the avionics of the Su-35S could surpass those of the T-50. Through the purchase of fifth-generation directional efflux nozzles with a large thrust to weight ratio, the Su-35S could reach a level of subsonic maneuverability equal to that of the T-50.

In terms of the exterior there is still quite a large gap between fourth- and fifth-generation fighters, however. Especially in terms of supercruise and stealth capability, aspects in which the Su-35S cannot compete with the F-22 or the T-50. The Chinese expert stated that China and India should not bicker over which Su-35 is more advanced, as the Su-35 is simply a complementary aircraft which will play a transient role in China’s air fleet. As the development of the Su-35S will also take time, China’s domestically developed fifth-generation J-20 stealth fighter will likely already be ready to be commissioned by the time the Su-35S is ready for service.

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

Ukraine Buys 40,000 Tons of Coal a Day From ‘Separatists’ — Minister

Ukraine is buying 40,000 tons of coal a day from the separatists, a Kiev-based newspaper wrote, citing a government report on the purchase of coal in territories of the Lugansk and Donetsk regions that remain out of control of the Kiev authorities.

“All our anthracite coal is coming from the uncontrolled territories… The mines are all there and we are still able to get it from there,” Korrespondent newspaper quoted Energy and Coal Minister Oleksandr Svetelik as saying on Saturday.

Svetelik added that nearly as much coal was coming from Donbass areas, controlled by the government.

The minister said that buying coal abroad now made no sense as the price of imported coal was almost twice that of the domestically produced coal.

He also said that before November 1 Ukraine planned to store up 3.2 million tons of coal it needed for the winter season.

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

For Nepal, India’s Embargo Stems From Modi’s Hegemonic Ambitions

Nepali experts spoke to AsiaNews about the real reasons behind India’s trade embargo. Delhi backs a Hindu monarchy, wants to dominate the country’s politics, and control its water resources, the latter to benefit its own agriculture. It is also interested in its trade routes like the Lipulekh Pass. Neither the new prime minister nor the new secular constitution are to India’s liking. To hide its intentions, it claims it wants to defend Nepal’s minorities.

Kathmandu (AsiaNews) — India’s de facto trade embargo against Nepal stems from its regional ambitions rather than a desire to protect Nepal’s Tharu and Madhesi minorities in the Terai, this according to some experts of Nepali politics and society who spoke to AsiaNews.

India is dissatisfied with Nepal because its current rulers failed to restore the country’s ousted Hindu monarchy, and adopted instead a secular constitution. At the same time, Delhi is driven by a desire to exert its hegemony over Nepal’s political life as well as its water resources and trading routes with China.

Since the new constitution came into effect, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has blocked food and fuel exports to Nepal, with serious consequences for the Nepali population. As shortages worsened, the country is sliding closer towards civil war.

“The current embargo is rooted in India’s hegemonic interests,” former Foreign Minister Prakash Chandra Lohani told AsiaNews. “Historically, India held Nepal under its thumb and dominated our politics. When a leader came out against India, his career was over. It is even said that the king was dethroned because he was turning to China, rather than remain within India’s sphere of influence.”

“In the past, politicians sought New Delhi’s support to solve problems. Now Prachanda (Maoist), KP Sharma Oli (Communist), who was elected the new prime minister last week, and Shushil Koirala, (Nepali Congress), the outgoing prime minister, agreed to the most secular constitution possible.”

In the past, appointments to Nepal’s highest political offices needed Indian consent, Lohani explained. Now, the newly elected Oli has no friends “in Delhi, and even less than Maoist Prachanda. India is concerned that it might lose its ascendancy over the [Nepali] government, which might prefer to channel exports through the Chinese border.”

“India has a great interest in water,” Umesh Bhatta, a writer, said. “Nepal is the country’s largest source of water, which flows from the Himalayas. India needs this resource for agriculture.”

“Since he was elected, Modi has signed nine water agreements and wants to build two massive dams on Nepal’s the Koshi and Karnali rivers”.

Both rivers run through the province the Madhesi and Tahru claim for their autonomous region. Tribals would give India control the water, which is why India is supporting the protests of the two minorities.”

For activist Phadindra Nepal, “the embargo is also motivated by the recent trade agreement on the passage of goods between China and India through the Lipulekh Pass.” The Himalayan pass links the ancient city of Taklakot (Purang in Tibetan) in Tibet to the Indian state of Uttarakhand through the Byash Valley in northwestern Nepal.

Beijing and Delhi decided to develop this trading route through Nepali territory without consulting Nepali authorities.

“When Koirala’s government opposed the agreement, reiterating Nepal’s sovereignty over this territory, India was not happy.”

“India is encroaching on several border areas that are important from the strategic point of view,” Maoist leader Agni Sapkota said. “We shall not tolerate this attitude.”

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

Italy Blocks Indian Application to MTCR

ROME and NEW DELHI — Italy has blocked India’s application to join a key missile and UAV technology control committee in protest of India’s arrest of two Italian Marines suspected of shooting dead Indian fishermen.

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

US Troop Extension Hands Afghanistan a Lifeline — For Now

The United States’ decision to extend its military presence in Afghanistan beyond 2016 has thrown the war-ravaged country’s government a much needed lifeline even as its dysfunctionality, blamed for the Taliban’s revival, shows no signs of abating.

It has been just over a year since Ashraf Ghani was sworn in as president as part of a US-brokered unity government with his main election rival, former anti-Soviet fighter Abdullah Abdullah, as chief executive.

While the deal was hailed as a breakthrough that had averted a possible ethnic civil war, experts blame the political deadlock it created for allowing the Taliban to regain momentum and unleash a wave of violence not been seen for years…

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

Uzbek Farmers Told to Glue Cotton Back on Bushes

(London Guardian) When word came that the Uzbek prime minister would be driving past their village, local officials wanted to impress him with roads lined by snowy white fields of cotton.

The only problem was that the cotton had already been picked.

So, locals say, farmers were told to glue cotton balls back on the bushes to give an impression of a bountiful harvest of the country’s most important crop.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

How China Guards the Xi Creation Myth

The UK says it wants to be China’s best friend in the West, and will be laying out the red carpet for the country’s new strongman, President Xi Jinping, when he begins a state visit on Monday. But what kind of person is he? I tried to find out by visiting the cave where he lived for seven years in his youth.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

U.K., China Poised for Deal on World’s Costliest Nuclear Plant

The U.K. and China are set to announce an accord that will give the Asian nation a stake in Electricite de France SA’s Hinkley Point project, Britain’s first nuclear plant in three decades and the most expensive atomic energy station ever.

The proposed deal is likely to be announced during a state visit to Britain by President Xi Jinping this week and follows protracted talks between EDF and its Chinese partners. The two nations will publish investments and deals worth a “huge” amount of money, including on nuclear power, Zhang Ji, assistant minister of commerce, said last week in Beijing. EDF will still have to make a final investment decision.

The U.K. government says new nuclear plants are a crucial part of the energy mix as Britain plans to cut carbon emissions while securing predictable electricity supplies. With construction costs estimated at 24.5 billion pounds ($37.9 billion) by the European Commission and bolstered by U.K. subsidies at twice the current wholesale power price, opponents have described Hinkley as “the most expensive object on earth.”

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

South Africa: Rape Victims Forced to Witness Husbands’ Water Death

Two couples walking in Rhodes Park in Kensington, east of Johannesburg were accosted by a gang of 12 savages. The women were gang-raped, while their husbands, who were tied up, were forced to watch.

The incident occurred on October 17, 2015 at 18:45.

After the ordeal, the savages hurled the two men, who were still bound, into the park’s lake.

The women were forced to watch their spouses drown.

The SAPS confirmed divers searched the lake and recovered the bodies of two men, aged 25 and 32 years old.

According to police spokesperson Lungelo Dlamini one of the 12 suspects was carrying a firearm when the attack took place.

The suspects are still at large.

           — Hat tip: RRN [Return to headlines]

Few in Venezuela Want Bolívars, But No One Can Spare a Dime

CARACAS, Venezuela — Pity the bolívar, Venezuela’s currency, named after its independence hero, Simón Bolívar. Even some thieves don’t want it anymore.

When robbers carjacked Pedro Venero, an engineer, he expected they would drive him to his bank to cash his check for a hefty sum in bolívars — the sort of thing that crime-weary Venezuelans have long since gotten used to. But the ruffians, armed with rifles and a hand grenade, were sure he would have a stash of dollars at home and wanted nothing to do with the bolívars in his bank account…

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

A Year on: Germany’s PEGIDA Radicalised by Refugee Influx

They gather in the dark, wave German flags and vent their fury at foreigners they fear are overrunning their homeland — next week Germany’s anti-Islamic PEGIDA movement turns one year old.

Radicalised by Germany’s record influx of refugees and migrants, the long-dormant protest movement has come back with a vengeance onto the streets of Dresden in the former communist East.

Last week one protester carried a mock-gallows with the names of Chancellor Angela Merkel and her deputy, despised by the protesters as “Berlin dictators” and “traitors” for their open-door policy to refugees.

PEGIDA — short for “Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the Occident” — started life as a xenophobic Facebook group around co-founder Lutz Bachmann, 42…

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

Bishops Call on British PM to Take More Syria Refugees

A group of 84 bishops have written to Prime Minister David Cameron urging him to allow more Syrian refugees to settle in Britain, a published letter showed.

The call comes days after 300 senior lawyers, former law lords and retired judges described Cameron’s offer to take 20,000 Syrian refugees over five years as “too low, too slow and too narrow”.

The Church of England bishops called on Cameron to accept 50,000 over five years, in a letter initially sent privately in September but made public following a “disheartening” lack of response from Cameron.

“As the fighting intensifies, as the sheer scale of human misery becomes greater, the government’s response seems increasingly inadequate to meet the scale and severity of the problem,” said Bishop of Durham Paul Butler, speaking on behalf of the bishops…

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

Church of England Bishops Demand Britain Takes 30k More Syrian Refugees

The Church of England has released a letter sent to Prime Minister David Cameron urging him to make a ‘meaningful and substantial response to the scale of human suffering we see daily’.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Early Results Show Anti-Immigrant Party Make Record Gains in Swiss Elections

An anti-immigrant conservative party is set to win a third of the seats in Switzerland’s parliamentary elections, according to preliminary results. Around 50 percent of voters cited migration as a main concern.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Germany Needs Fence on Austrian Border to Limit Migration — Trade Union

Germany should build a fence on the border with Austria to contain the influx of undocumented migrants, the chief of the German Police Trade Union (DPolG) said Sunday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Germany is the main destination for the majority of asylum seekers who are fleeing conflicts in Syria and other conflict-torn regions of the Middle East and North Africa.

“If we are seriously set to introduce border control, we need to build a fence along the German border. I support the idea that it should be done,” Rainer Wendt told the German Welt am Sonntag newspaper in an interview.

He noted that the construction of a fence along the German frontier would trigger “a chain reaction.”

“If we, in such a way, close our borders, Austria will also shut its border with Slovenia. It is exactly the effect we need,” Wendt stressed.

Berlin expects an influx of about 1.5 million refugees in 2015, well over a previously announced official forecast of 800,000.

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

Germany Must Build Border Fence, Says Police Union Chief

A German police union chief has called for a fence to be built along the country’s border to stem the flow of migrants. Rainer Wendt told the “Welt am Sonntag” newspaper that other countries would then follow suit.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Germany: Thousands Form Candlelit Chain Against Xenophobia Through Berlin

A line of people holding candles and lamps wound through the streets of Berlin in a demonstration against xenophobia. The event came the same day as a race-hate attack in Cologne.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Germany’s Merkel in Turkey for Refugee Talks

Chancellor Angela Merkel arrived in Turkey on Sunday to seek ways to resolve the migrant crisis, after Germany was shaken by a bloody knife attack on a pro-refugee politician.

Merkel was to meet President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to discuss how Turkey can help contain the historic flood of people coming from Syria, Iraq and other war zones in return for billions in aid and other European Union concessions.

Germany has been Europe’s top destination for refugees, most of whom travel through Turkey and the Balkans, and expects up to one million arrivals this year — an influx that has hurt Merkel politically.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Germany Ready to Support Turkey’s EU Accession Process, Says Merkel

Chancellor Merkel has said Germany will support Turkey’s EU membership bid, during a visit aimed at securing Ankara’s help in stemming a migrant influx to Europe. Turkish PM Davutoglu hailed Europe’s “better approach.”

Germany is ready to accelerate Turkey’s EU accession process, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Sunday at a joint press conference with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. Merkel spoke of organizing the accession process “more dynamically.”

According to officials, the EU offered Ankara an aid package of at least 3 billion euros ($3.4 billion) along with an easing of EU visa restrictions for Turkish citizens, which Merkel and Davutoglu discussed.

The German chancellor later met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who said he asked Merkel to support Turkey’s EU membership bid. Erdogan added that he also asked France, Britain and Spain for support.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

ISIS Fighters Could Gain Legal Entry Into EU, Thanks to Europe’s New Schengen Visa Deal for Turkey

It doesn’t get any more backward than this. Potentially, this is the dumbest move yet by bureaucrats in Brussels.

Turkey is set to pick up a few big sweeteners from Brussels if ‘tries’ to stop refugee flow into Europe — even though it’s nearly impossible for Ankara to actually come good on its lofty promise to ‘contain’ the large refugee flow through Turkey into the European promise land.

It’s true that Turkey has accommodated roughly 2 million Syrian refugees, and is said to have spent over nearly $8 billion on the crisis thus far.

What they are not telling us however, is that Turkey has been the primary facilitator of the Syrian conflict, mainly by hosting terrorist and ‘rebel’ training and equipping for tens of thousands of fighters since 2011, as well as providing a continuous safe haven for terrorist fighters — freely coming and going over its southern border with Syria.

[Comment: Destroying the ‘nation-state’ is a goal of EU apparatchiks, minions of the banksters. Create chaos, then centralize even more power into the EU government.]

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Man Opposed to Illegal Immigration Stabs German Politician

A leading mayoral candidate in the German city of Cologne was seriously injured on Saturday after she was attacked by a man opposed to illegal immigrants flooding into the country.

Henriette Reker was stabbed in the neck at a campaign stand. She is a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats.

A senior police investigator, Norbert Wagner, said the attacker “wanted to and did commit this act because of anti-foreigner motives.”

The 44-year-old German national and Cologne resident “made general statements” about Merkel’s policies on migrants, but did not specifically mention the Chancellor.

On Thursday Germany’s lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, formalized a policy designed to deal with the wave of illegal migrants.

The policy will reportedly speed up asylum procedures and make certain rejected applicants are returned to their home country.

The plan by federal and state governments also intends to provide migrants with better means to integrate into society, according to Deutsche Welle. Studies Show Muslims Refuse to Integrate

In 2009 the Berlin Institute for Population and Development released the results of a survey showing that large numbers of immigrants — in particular, Muslim Turks — have not integrated into German society.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Migrant Thousands Enter Slovenia After Hungary Closes Border

Thousands of migrants are crossing into Slovenia from Croatia after Hungary closed its border to them.

About 4,000 have arrived in Slovenia, the UN refugee agency says. Most aim to travel on to Austria, Germany and other countries.

Slovenia’s army has been placed on standby to help police deal with the influx, Prime Minister Miro Cerar said.

He said Slovenia would accept the migrants as long as Austria and Germany kept their borders open.

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

Migrants May Bring Epidemics, Warns Polish President

Poland’s conservative President Andrzej Duda on Sunday said his government should take steps to protect its citizens if it took in migrants as they could bring “possible epidemics”.

The statements are potentially embarrassing for former Polish premier Donald Tusk, who is now the EU president, and who has criticised the growing trend among European nations to erect new barriers to keep out refugees from Syria and elsewhere.

Duda said if the government was ready to accept migrants it should take measures “to ensure that Poles are well protected against epidemiological risks”.

“The security of citizens is the most important question… financial and physical security as much as health,” Duda told the TVN24 channel…

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

Migrant Crisis: Slovenia Sets Limit of 2,500 People a Day

Slovenia will only allow 2,500 migrants to cross its borders daily — half the number neighbour Croatia has asked for.

Interior Ministry Secretary of State Bostjan Sefic said Slovenia could not accept Croatia’s request to take 5,000, because Austria’s daily limit is 1,500.

Most migrants — many from Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq — are crossing Croatia and Slovenia to reach western Europe.

The limitation on numbers has led to a build-up of migrants and refugees on Croatia’s border with Serbia.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

NYC Council Proposes Giving Non-Citizens the Right to Vote

(NaturalNews) If liberals on the New York City Council get their way, the privileged right to vote will no longer be limited only to actual citizens of the United States. They will be extended to anyone who can walk, crawl, or be dragged to a voting booth in the Big Apple, regardless of where they hail from.

As reported by Britain’s Guardian newspaper, since New York City is such a “global hub,” it only makes sense (to a liberal) that citizens of the world be given the right to exert political force (of which voting is a form) there, since the megatropolis caters to the world’s population.

Currently, the NYC Council is drafting legislation that would give all legal residents, no matter their citizenship status, the right to vote, but only in city elections. If it eventually makes it way into New York City’s legal code, “it would mark major victory for a voting rights campaign that seeks to enfranchise non-citizen voters in local elections across the country,” the paper said.

At present, some U.S. towns allow non-citizens to vote in local elections — and all politics, after all, are local — but NYC would become the largest jurisdiction if the measure passes.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Pro-Refugee Candidate Stabbed in Cologne, Germany

(CNN)A man who said he disapproved of her liberal stance on refugees stabbed her in the neck a day before voters went to the polls.

But that didn’t stop German mayoral candidate Henriette Reker from winning Sunday’s election. The independent candidate, who’s expected to make a full recovery, is poised to become the next mayor of the western city of Cologne. Preliminary election results indicate she soared to victory, winning more than 52% of the vote

While Reker recovered from her injuries, a judge ruled Sunday that the suspect accused of attacking her must stay in jail until his trial.

Reker was campaigning Saturday in an open-air market, handing out roses to pedestrians, when a middle-aged man approached her and asked for a flower.

“When she tried to give him one, he pulled out a knife and stabbed her in the neck,” campaign spokesman Frederik Schorn told CNN.

Later, the suspect vented to officers his disapproval of the candidate’s liberal policies on refugees and criticized those of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, according to German media reports.

Four other people sustained injuries in the attack. Police say they believe the 44-year-old man acted alone. He was carrying two knives, one of them a combat knife.

           — Hat tip: Dean [Return to headlines]

Refugees Not ‘Invading’ France, Hollande Blasts

French President Francois Hollande has tried to put the record straight insisting that France is not being “invaded” by refugees as the far right would have people believe.

French President Francois Hollande has tried to put the record straight insisting that France is not being invaded by refugees as the far right would have people believe.

Hollande blasted those trying to kid the population into believing they will soon be overrun by refugees.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

So Why Are There So Many Young Males Among Refugees?

An Iraqi Kurdish refugee helped us shed light on the fact why the visible majority of the refugees are young males, and complained over Hungarian girls at discos.

Vasily Raksha — During the old peaceful times school graduate Ahmed helped his father with shawarma business in the Iraqi town of Jalawla. Their life was complicated by religious disagreements but was still tolerable. But when Islamic State terrorists assaulted the town, aimed to massacre all Kurds, the young man’s family fled the violence, finding safe haven in Turkey.

Ahmed’s father bore arms against the aggressor and joined Peshmerga — the Kurdish military formation — and left for Syria. He never returned.

“I want to see my father’s grave but I can’t and I don’t even know where it is.”

With a mother, two younger brothers and two younger sisters, 20-year-old Ahmed had to bear the responsibility as the oldest man in the family. They were too poor to go to Europe together — only one of them could. So they raked up all the money they had and sent Ahmed to the EU with a goal to obtain documents that enable the transfer of the whole family.

So the migration scheme with men being the pathfinders may have three reasons: first, men are the most probable targets of wars and want to survive; second, Muslim men are more socially active than women which is important for getting documents and integrating in Europe; third, women have to take care of a lot of children in big Muslim families. So Middle Eastern refugees kill all those ducks with one stone: they save the men from war and get a stronger foothold in Europe at the same time.

Ahmed lived for nine months in Sweden but was deported from there because his fingerprints were taken in Hungary as the country of entrance to the EU.

He dreams about becoming a football player.

“I play very good football! I played in Sweden in the town of Goteborg for five months!”

He has spent six months in a refugee camp near the Hungarian town of Gyor asking the authorities to “delete his fingerprints and give him his passport” because he does not want to stay in Hungary, though he likes locals.

“All of Europe is good. Only Hungary is bad: little money, little food.”

The social benefit he receives is 20 euro per week for food plus 20 euro per month for pocket expenses. Not too much, of course, in comparison with ample benefits in Germany, but the sum nearly equals to the minimum salary in Hungary of 50,000 forints (161 euros).

The camp does not have many kinds of entertainment: tennis and billiard are gone, and its inhabitants have to play football with a basketball ball. They have only one TV-set for all.

“Here we only sleep and look at our phones.”

The young man grumbled at Hungarian girls who rejected his attempts to become acquainted.

“I went to discos, and the girls are nice, but when me and all people from Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan say ‘hello’ and try to speak to them they just turn their backs on us.”

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

Spanish Women Knit Blankets of Love for Syria’s Displaced Thousands

Working at home or huddled together in cafe’s, women of all ages across Spain have furiously knitted hundreds of blankets to send to war-torn Syria before cold weather begins following an online appeal for help.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Swiss Anti-Immigration Party Poised to Win Record Seats in Parliament

The anti-immigration Swiss People’s Party (SVP) won the biggest share of the vote in Sunday’s national parliamentary election, initial projections showed, keeping pressure on Bern to introduce quotas on people moving from the European Union.

The result, based on initial projections by Swiss TV, gives the SVP 65 seats in the 200-member lower house of parliament, the largest number for any Swiss party in at least a century.

The SVP’s success, coupled with gains made by the pro-business Liberal Party (FDP), led political commentators to talk of a “Rechtsrutsch” — move to the right — in Swiss politics…

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

Swiss Parliament Tilts Right Over Migration Fears

Initial Swiss election results and projections on Sunday showed the populist right significantly strengthening its already dominant position in parliament amid concerns over migration and asylum rules.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Three Swedish Refugee Centres Hit by Fire

An old school building in Onsala, Kungsbacka, 30kms south of Gothenburg, caught fire on Saturday evening. It was the third time this week that prospective asylum accommodation has been badly damaged by fire.

The fire was attended by 20 firefighters. The building, part of the otherwise demolished Furulidsskolan, was to be prepared to greet asylum seekers in the affluent area of Kungsbacka.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Obama and Cameron Ratting Out Their Citizens to Islamists

If radical Islam cannot force infidels to convert on penalty of death or penury, the deadly policies of President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron will force dissenters out of the arena of resistance…

Just using the term ‘radical Islam’ or voicing objections to being over-run by mostly young male ‘refugees’ flooding European and American borders will get main-street Americans and British citizens membership on Obama’s and Cameron’s ‘hate’ lists, and it’s only a matter of time before the jihadists find their way to them.

If you happen to run a website like this one, the authorities will soon be able to relieve you of it, no “ifs”, “ands” or “buts”.

Obama, who started the procedure for compiling an official list of his own citizens, was never stopped by anyone, including presidential primary candidates of both parties. Cameron picked up the ball and began running with it only yesterday.

Ratting out one’s citizenry for presidents and prime ministers seems part of the Brave New World.

“John Carlin, the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) assistant attorney general for National Security, announced on Wednesday that the DOJ is creating a new position of domestic terrorism counsel to combat the “real and present threat” of domestic extremism. Carlin praised groups such as the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) “that dedicate themselves to examining what the threat is, observing it, and reporting on it,” adding that the work of the SPLC was “very important.” (, Oct. 15, 2015)

[Comment: Basically, if you are aginst the NWO restructing of nations and societies you are an enemy. If you love the Constitution, are an American patriot, favour the 2nd Amendment , you need to be watched as you are a potential threat. Globalists are begining the program of classifying their nation’s own citizens as enemies of their future socialist utopian state.]

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

3 thoughts on “Gates of Vienna News Feed 10/18/2015

  1. Each country determining and adjusting the dosage of arsenic that their so called deletes have promised will bring them about a slow agonizing death. Of course the Muslim believes he’s ‘superior’. How could it be any other way?

    • Thanks for the background links.
      I thought it was bad enough for the past few years and more.
      Then this surge, given the ok by Merkel.

      Now to incorporate Turkey in the EU, so at least all native Turks can travel the EU.

      Why can not one see that Turkey will have the printing presses running flat tick fluttering out passports for all the refugees.
      Even if shortly any EU country objects, too late and those printing presses will just keep running.

      Would they even need a passport? let alone a visa.
      How will it even be policed? let alone deportation

      The next step of course is that Turkey should be in the Schengen zone. lol, and of course they can decide who becomes a “passport citizen”, well decided with a few $$

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