Sunday, January 12, 2003

News Feed 20120912

Financial Crisis
»ECB to Become Bank Union Supremo From Mid-2013
»German Constitutional Court Rules in Favor of Euro Zone Bailout Fund, With Conditions
»German Court Removes Hurdle to Euro Zone Bailout Fund
»Germany Approves New Eurozone Bailout Fund
»German High Court OKs Permanent Bailout Fund With Reservations
»Ireland Short €324bn for Pensions
»Karlsruhe: More Money for ESM Needs Bundestag Approval
»New York Times Praises ECB’s ‘Super Mario’ Draghi
»Obama’s Plan to Solve Unemployment Changes Problem by Growing Government
»Sighs of Relief as German Court Approves Bailout Fund
»Tinkering With TARP
»WSJ: European Funds Buy Italian and Spanish Bonds
»A President Romney Should Shutter Dept. Of Homeland Security
»Anti-Islam Filmmaker in Hiding After Protests
»CAIR Releases Profile of Islamophobe Pamela Geller
»EPA Threatens the Foundation of U.S. Economy
»Green, Rotten, And Red Sustainability Indoctrination
»Murder at the US Embassy: Barack Obama Cannot Attack Libya, So What Does He Do?
»Pollsters Threatened by Axelrod and the Obama DOJ
»Remembering 9/11: Muslims for Life
»Statement in Response to Protests in Egypt and Libya, And Our Involvement in the Film, Innocence of Muslims
Europe and the EU
»An Expensive Farce Germany’s Somali Pirate Trial is Pointless
»Arctic Foxes Took Ice Bridge to Reach Iceland
»Extremist Threat is Not Just About the Economy, Stupid
»Foreign Tourists Flock to EU
»Germany: Jews Demonstrate Over Threat to Circumcision in Germany
»Ireland: Ex-Shop Worker Takes Case Over Hijab
»Panel: Police at Fault in Response to Deadly UK Stadium Football Crush
»Study of Islamophobia in the Netherlands Now Available in Translation
»UK: £200,000 Bill for Policing Protests Over Scout Hut in Thurnby Lodge, Leicester
»UK: Ed Miliband’s Silence Over TUC Thatcher ‘Death’ T-Shirts is Shameful
»UK: Lessons in Hatred and Abuse
»UK: Mother’s Anger as Baby’s Father Escapes Jail After Fracturing Child’s Skull When He Lost His Tempersteven Pickering Admitted Assaulting His Child Logan But Got a Suspended Sentence Because of His ‘Low Intelligence’
»UK: Police Recruitment Changes Planned, May Says
»UK: Salma Yaqoob Quits as Respect Party Leader
»UK: We Are Waltham Forest Plans Huge Demonstration Against Second English Defence League March in Walthamstow
North Africa
»Blasphemous Film: US Ambassador Killed in Benghazi
»Cairo and Benghazi US Consulate Attacks Show Post Arab Spring Challenges
»Egypt: Ex Premier Shafiq Indicted for Corruption
»Egypt: Court Lifts Ban on Veils for Egyptair Cabin Crew
»Egypt: Mursi Meets UK Foreign Secretary
»Italy Says US Consulate Attack ‘Abominable’
»Killing of U.S. Ambassador, 3 Staffers Condemned by Libyan Officials
»Libya Commemorates 9/11
»Libya, Egypt, Embassy Attacked
»Obama Administration Officials Say Attack in Libya May Have Been Planned
»Obama Vows to Track Down Ambassador’s Killers
»Stakelbeck: Is the Middle East Better Off Than 2 Years Ago?
»The Hollywood Connection: How a Real Estate Man’s Film Led to Rage in Libya
»Tunisia: Islamic Party Proposes Referendum on Bigamy
»U.S. Embassy in Egypt Cowers to Extremists
»‘US Ambassador Killed’ In Libya Protest — Live Updates
»US Ambassador ‘Killed in Libya Attack’
»US Ambassador to Libya Reported Murdered on 9/11: A Wicked Attempt to Manipulate American Politics — and It’s Working
»US Ambassador ‘Killed in Libya’
Israel and the Palestinians
»MI6 Boss ‘Visited Israeli Prime Minister to Urge Against Attacking Iran’
»Nazareth Imam Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for Incitement
Middle East
»Arab Media Denounce Syrian Girls Trafficking
»Three Men and a Couch
South Asia
»Afghanistan: NATO Copter Destroyed by Taliban at Base
»Pakistan Factory Fires Kill 191
Far East
»David Cameron Ridiculed in Chinese Newspaper
Australia — Pacific
»New Zealand Grants Legal Personhood Rights — To a River
Sub-Saharan Africa
»The Election of Hassan Sheikh Mohamud Could End an Era of Hopelessness in Somalia
Latin America
»Mexico Extradites Zeta Drugs Cartel Founder Over Killing of US Agent
»Mexico Extradites San Jose Mosque Imam
»Turkey: Police Round Up 138 Illegal Migrants at EU Border
Culture Wars
»Gawker: ‘Pedophilia is a Sexual Orientation’

Financial Crisis

ECB to Become Bank Union Supremo From Mid-2013

The European Central Bank will supervise Europe’s biggest banks from mid-2013, according to the controversial banking union proposals to be announced Wednesday (12 September) by the European Commission.

Under the plans, the ECB will assume supervisory control over the eurozone’s most systemically important banks from July 2013, before covering all other banks from January 2014.

The proposals, which will be formally unveiled by Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso in his state of the union speech in the European Parliament on Wednesday, are the most radical step taken by the EU to break the link between debt-laden banks and sovereigns.

Meanwhile, in a bid to appease MEPs, angry at the prospect of the Parliament being side-lined from the reforms, the EU executive wants to revise the rules governing the European Banking Authority (EBA), one of three financial sector watchdogs created in 2011.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

German Constitutional Court Rules in Favor of Euro Zone Bailout Fund, With Conditions

Germany’s constitutional court on Wednesday gave Chancellor Angela Merkel a significant victory in her bid to master the debt crisis that has buffeted Europe for years and endangered its common currency, granting approval to one of the key pillars of her strategy.

With the ruling, the 17 countries of the euro zone will be able to move ahead with the establishment of the European Stability Mechanism, something like a continental version of the International Monetary Fund. The mechanism will handle bailouts and work in tandem with the European Central Bank to buy the bonds of countries such as Italy and Spain that are straining under high interest rates.

The court ruled that Germany could proceed with its contribution to the mechanism with only limited conditions, including a requirement for parliamentary approval of any increase in the agreed German contribution of 190 billion euros, or about $240 billion. While unlikely to still the crisis entirely, a rejection could have unleashed new waves of instability on the financial markets and thrown the fitful march toward European integration into question as the architects of the rescue rushed back to the drawing board.

[Return to headlines]

German Court Removes Hurdle to Euro Zone Bailout Fund

KARLSRUHE, Germany, Sept 12 (Reuters) — Germany’s Constitutional Court gave a green light on Wednesday for the country to ratify Europe’s new bailout fund, boosting hopes that the single currency bloc is finally putting in place the tools to resolve its three-year old debt crisis.

In an eagerly anticipated ruling that has had investors on tenterhooks for months, the court in the southern city of Karlsruhe insisted the German parliament be given veto rights over any increase in Berlin’s contribution to the 700 billion euro European Stability Mechanism (ESM).

But the strings it attached to its endorsement of the ESM and a separate European pact on budget rules were less onerous than many had feared. The euro shot up to a four month high against the dollar and global stocks rose to a five month peak.

“This is a good day for Germany and a good day for Europe,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a speech to parliament.

Germany is the only country in the 17-nation euro zone that has not ratified the ESM, an important tool to stem the crisis that has forced bailouts of Greece, Ireland and Portugal, and is now threatening big countries like Italy and Spain.

Had the court upheld complaints against the rescue fund by thousands of German plaintiffs it would have delayed its implementation or even doomed it, dealing a devastating blow to policymakers and sending markets reeling.

European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi announced plans last week to buy “unlimited” amounts of government bonds issued by stricken euro states like Spain and Italy in order to reduce their borrowing costs.

That plan fuelled optimism in the markets, but it was contingent on the ESM coming into force. Following Wednesday’s ruling, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said he expected the rescue fund to be operational within weeks.

Jean-Claude Juncker, who heads the group of euro zone finance ministers, set a first meeting of the ESM’s board of governors for Oct. 8, another sign of optimism that the fund will soon be up and running.

“The euro zone has got over another hurdle, and slowly but surely, the region is getting more stable, less risky,” said David Thebault, head of quantitative sales trading at Global Equities in Paris.

Two Conditions

Roughly 37,000 plaintiffs, including democracy advocates, lawmakers from Merkel’s ruling coalition and others from a far-left party, had argued that the ESM amounted to an illegal transfer of sovereignty from Berlin to Brussels.

The court rejected the complaints as “largely unfounded” but did set two main conditions.

First, German liability in the rescue fund must be limited to 190 billion euros, the share set out in the current ESM treaty, and any increase in that amount will require prior approval by the Bundestag lower house of parliament, the court said.

Until now, Merkel has always succeeded in getting new aid measures through parliament, in part because of the support of opposition parties like the Social Democrats (SPD) and Greens.

Second, the court said a clause in the ESM treaty which seeks to keep decisions of the fund confidential “must not stand in the way of the comprehensive information of the Bundestag and of the Bundesrat (upper house)”, meaning both chambers would have the right to be consulted on the ESM’s activities.

The German government may now have to incorporate the court’s reservations in some form of addendum or protocol to the ESM treaty, although this is not expected to take much time.

“These conditions are significantly less onerous than they might have been,” said J.P. Morgan economist Alex White.

Spain and Italy, whose struggling economies are likely to be the main beneficiaries of the ECB’s debt-buying programme, hailed the ruling, with Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti calling it “excellent news”.

It represents a victory for Merkel, who has been forced to walk a fine line between helping weaker euro states and keeping her sceptical domestic audience on board ahead of a federal election one year from now where she will seek a third term.

The centre-right chancellor should now be able “to hold on to her domestically popular line of managing the eurozone crisis with a mixture of commitment and conditionality”, said Carsten Nickel, a political risk analyst at Eurasia.

The Constitutional Court, one of Germany’s most trusted institutions, has earned a reputation as a thorn in the side of the European Union by delaying treaties to check their legality.

But legal experts said the court’s decision on Wednesday had underlined Germany’s commitment to deeper European integration.

What the ruling does not do is remove the threat of further challenges down the road.

Peter Gauweiler, a eurosceptic lawmaker from Merkel’s Bavarian sister party and one of the plaintiffs, hailed the ruling as “a very big success”, in part because the court agreed to take a closer look at the ECB’s bond buying plan at a later date.

“They are clearly not discouraging further lawsuits, rather the contrary,” said Franz Mayer, a law professor at Bielefeld University.

Kai von Lewinski, a legal expert at Humboldt University in Berlin, said: “We can be very sure this has not been the last decision of the German constitutional court. The ESM is safe, but the role of the European Central Bank definitely is not.”

[Return to headlines]

Germany Approves New Eurozone Bailout Fund

Germany’s top court has conditionally cleared the way for the eurozone’s new bailout fund to be signed into law. The introduction of the European Stability Mechanism was delayed by thousands of legal challenges.

The Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe rejected objections to the legality of Germany’s contribution to the long-anticipated European Stability Mechanism (ESM) and separate budget pact in a landmark ruling on Wednesday. The ruling paves the way for German President Joachim Gauck to sign the legislation into law in a move tipped as a possible turning point in the eurozone debt crisis.

“The Second Senate of the Federal Constitutional Court has rejected the injunctions with the stipulation that a ratification of the ESM Treaty is only admissible if (certain conditions) can be guaranteed under international law,” Chief Justice Andreas Vosskukle said.

The ESM will provide the eurozone with the flexibility to deploy 500 billion euros ($630 billion) in emergency funds to support its weakest members. As the strongest economy in Europe, Germany will be the main contributor.

But the court specified that any financial burdens for Germany arising from the ESM must be limited to its 190-billion-euro share, currently set out in the ESM treaty. The Bundestag (Germany’s lower house of parliament) must be called upon to sanction any burdens that exceed this figure.

It also ruled that the Bundestag and Bundesrat (the upper house) remain informed on ESM activities, despite a clause in the ESM treaty which seeks to keep decisions of the fund confidential.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

German High Court OKs Permanent Bailout Fund With Reservations

Germany and Europe can both breathe a sigh of relief on Wednesday: The Federal Constitutional Court has rejected a petition to stop the ratification of the permanent euro rescue fund, the European Stability Mechanism. The decision clears the way for the ESM to go into effect.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Ireland Short €324bn for Pensions

Ireland needs to find €324bn to fund future pension and social welfare liabilities according to an unpublished government report, seen by the Irish Times. The paper reports that rising pension liabilities are the primary reason behind the large funding gap. Ireland’s national debt is €133bn.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Karlsruhe: More Money for ESM Needs Bundestag Approval

The German Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe has ruled that any increase of Germany’s contribution to the future permanent bailout fund (ESM) over the current €190bn cap must be approved by the national parliament, the Bundestag.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

New York Times Praises ECB’s ‘Super Mario’ Draghi

Central banker likened to Germany soccer nemesis Pirlo

(ANSA) — New York, September 11 — “Super Mario to the Rescue” reads the headline on a New York Times column praising European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi for his latest plan to help struggling eurozone nations survive the debt crisis.

The editorial, which ran Sunday in the New York Times and Monday in the International Herald Tribune, compares Draghi to a star soccer player able to dodge through opposition and turmoil to achieve his goals.

“I prefer to see him as Andrea Pirlo, the Italian midfielder with 360-degree vision, never hurried, always assured, master of the short and the long pass, bane of Germany, a fantasist who hits the target with precision,” reads the column.

It particularly praised Draghi’s ability to overcome German opposition to see his bond-buying plan come to life, describing how “Super Mario” is able to undo Germany “…with a series of feints that have left hardline Bundesbank bruisers looking as nimble and effective as beached whales,” reads the editorial. “Little by little, Mario Draghi, the Italian president of the European Central Bank, has taken an institution whose overriding mission was to keep inflation in check…and turned it into a lender of last resort prepared to throw everything into buying the distressed euro-zone sovereign debt of countries like Spain and Italy and so preserve the euro”. Led by Draghi, the ECB announced last week an unlimited bond-purchase program in order to better manage interest rates in the euro area and provide some protection for the common currency by countering financial-market speculation about the euro’s future.

An “appropriate conditions” clause tells governments in troubled countries, including Italy and Spain, that they must formally request assistance under the program and live with whatever stringent conditions may be imposed.

That means ECB bond purchases would be conditional on governments signing up to a European Financial Stability Facility or European Stability Mechanism programme.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Obama’s Plan to Solve Unemployment Changes Problem by Growing Government

Don’t be fooled about Obama’s plan to solve the unemployment problem; and it IS a problem. But his very simple (and simple-minded) plan is to grow the government BIGGER to the point where multi-millions will be employed there. The unemployment rate will plummet to near pre-Obama numbers; problem solved.

But that will then create another new problem. As anyone with an iota of sense knows, government does not produce any sort of a product, the sale of which creates revenues from which salaries are paid. Therefore, government revenues are strictly in the form of taxes and fees and Obama and his corrupt Czars and Cabinet Officers can come up with more unbelievable forms of taxes and fees than there are stars in the universe.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Sighs of Relief as German Court Approves Bailout Fund

Markets and EU politicians breathed sighs of relief as Germany’s top court rejected challenges brought against eurozone’s upcoming bailout fund, expected to launch in October. Any increase in Berlin’s contribution will need parliamentary approval, however.

“This is a good day for Europe and a good day for the euro,” European Parliament chief Martin Schulz said as the common currency hiked to a four-month high against the US dollar and European shares climbed on the ruling pronounced in Karlsruhe.

The verdict rejected the request to block ratification of the two treaties establishing the European Stability Mechanism — a €500bn strong bailout fund for struggling eurozone countries — and the so-called fiscal compact on budget discipline, a treaty signed in March by all EU countries except Great Britain and the Czech Republic.

This means the German president can complete the ratification process, allowing for the ESM to come into force in October, after three months of delay.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Tinkering With TARP

What is interesting about Obama’s Debt is that the total accumulated historic unpaid national debt when Obama was handed the key to the Oval Office was $10,699,804,864,612.13. In three years, the Obama-Pelosi-Reid spending cartel increased the national debt by another $5,300,736,228,779.78. It took the country 225 years to accumulate a debt of $10.7 trillion. In 3.5 years, Barack Obama added 50% more, bringing the debt your children, grandchildren and great, great grandchildren will be expected to pay to $15,990,541,092,391.91 [the national debt on Sept. 2, 2012. That debt now exceeds $16 trillion.) Who got the money? Add Walmart “smiley faces” to the photos of a lot of investment bankers and a lot of watermelons (businessmen and environmentalists who are green on the outside, communist red on the inside) campaign, contributors and bundlers whose quid pro quos from the Obama Administration make it a certainty that they won’t ever have to worry about their children going to bed hungry, or experience the fear of having their summer homes or winter chalets foreclosed because they can’t pay the mortgage.

Each year you — Mr. and Mrs. Taxpayer — are forced to pay the Federal Reserve a little over $150 billion in interest on that debt. When Barack Obama promised the American people “change,” it was the one campaign promise he kept. Obama changed the fortunes of every man, woman and child in this country — and none for the better because at the end of the month, when the bills are paid, most Americans find all they have left — if they were able to pay all of the bills — is pocket change. A select few are now better off. Bankers, industrialists, and the Marxist greenies who bankrolled Obama’s 2008 election campaign. Solyndra was one of them. The California-based solar panel manufacturer tried to get a low-interest loan from the Bush-43 Administration but it was failing worse than Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Bush-43 Energy Secretary Sam Bodman turned them down.

After 20 visits to the Obama White House to remind Obama that Solyndra shareholder and Obama bundler George Kaiser had invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in his campaign, Obama’s Energy Secretary Steven Chu gave them $536 million in taxpayer funds from the stimulus slush fund that was supposed to be used to save the homes of downsized American workers.


The greed of the bankers in the Fed, in Treasury, and on Wall Street, has no limits. The moment TARP was signed into law, the nation’s largest banks lined up for their taxpayer bailout. Only, there was no room in the line for the taxpayer that TARP was designed to help. While the bankers would like us to believe that the subprime mortgage industry perpetuated the financial crisis that evolved into a global financial debacle, the reality is the greed of the princes of industry and the barons of banking’s caused the crisis by attempting to harness the human capital of the third world to create a fluid global economy at the expense of the industrialized nations. The princes of industry and the barons of banking were convinced they could have their cake and eat it, too. They miscalculated. They forgot one thing. When they exported their factories and their jobs to the human capital in the third world, they never asked: “Where are their former employees going to find the jobs they need to produce the income required to purchase the products their former employees were now making with slave labor to send back to the United States for sale?”


The Obama printing presses have printed over $7 trillion since 2009. Much of that money was simply placed into circulation, devaluating every dollar already in existence.

Now you know why prices for consumer goods — and gasoline — are skyrocketing. Economic commodities are pegged at their intrinsic value just as asset-backed debt (i.e., Federal Reserve notes) have a commodity value equal to the value of the collateral. When there is no collateral, the value not only of that money just printed, but all money in circulation, is devalued. Every American with a buck in his pocket has a dollar that’s now worth about 50.3¢ in pre-Obama dollars based on the commodity value of gold from Dec. 31, 2008 to Sept. 4, 2012. And you wondered why it is that you can’t afford to go to the supermarket anymore.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

WSJ: European Funds Buy Italian and Spanish Bonds

(ANSAmed) — Rome, September 11 — European funds are increasing their exposure to Italian and Spanish sovereign bonds following the announcement by the European Central Bank of a new unlimited bond-buying programme last Thursday, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday. “Fund managers in Europe have invested more of their money in high-yielding euro-zone sovereign bonds in the run-up to and after the European Central Bank’s approval last week of a plan allowing it to make unlimited purchases of government bonds from struggling countries in the currency bloc,” said the paper.

However it added that “It is too early to say whether the interest from traditionally long-term investors such as asset managers will last beyond this initial burst of optimism”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]


A President Romney Should Shutter Dept. Of Homeland Security

Even the name of the department conjures up memories of Nazi Germany. “Homeland” sounds, to me, rather like “The Fatherland.” Speaking it’s name aloud just makes my skin crawl.

Look. DHS has the capacity to be to America’s citizens what the Gestapo was to the people of Hitler’s Germany and to the people of the countries occupied by the Nazis.

Yes, I do realize the majority of Americans today have little (if any) memory of that era. For those of us who DO remember it, all too well, we DO feel an obligation to warn the generations following us when we see OUR government drifting in the direction of that authoritarian, tyrannical, regime.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Anti-Islam Filmmaker in Hiding After Protests

LOS ANGELES (AP) — An Israeli filmmaker went into hiding Tuesday after his movie attacking Islam’s prophet Muhammad sparked angry assaults by ultra-conservative Muslims on U.S. missions in Egypt and Libya, where one American was killed. Speaking by phone from an undisclosed location, writer and director Sam Bacile remained defiant, saying Islam is a cancer and that the 56-year-old intended his film to be a provocative political statement condemning the religion. Protesters angered over Bacile’s film opened fire on and burned down the U.S. consulate in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi, killing an American diplomat on Tuesday. In Egypt, protesters scaled the walls of the U.S. embassy in Cairo and replaced an American flag with an Islamic banner.

Bacile, a California real estate developer who identifies himself as an Israeli Jew, said he believes the movie will help his native land by exposing Islam’s flaws to the world. “Islam is a cancer, period,” he repeatedly said in a solemn, accented tone. The two-hour movie, “Innocence of Muslims,” cost $5 million to make and was financed with the help of more than 100 Jewish donors, said Bacile, who wrote and directed it. The film claims Muhammad was a fraud. An English-language 13-minute trailer on YouTube shows an amateur cast performing a wooden dialogue of insults disguised as revelations about Muhammad, whose obedient followers are presented as a cadre of goons…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

CAIR Releases Profile of Islamophobe Pamela Geller

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today released the second in a series of Islamophobe profiles documenting the individuals and organizations involved in spreading anti-Muslim bias in the United States. This profile examines Pamela Geller, the “caustic mouthpiece” of the Islamophobia movement. She was cited today in an exclusive report by Reuters news agency exposing the American anti-Islam groups that support the extremist anti-Muslim views of Dutch politician Geert Wilders. Geller is also the person behind anti-Islam public advertisements going up in cities nationwide…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

EPA Threatens the Foundation of U.S. Economy

Economy-wrecking cap and trade legislation has been introduced in Congress over the years to force the U.S. to go to green energy. Although Americans rejected all of these efforts, President Obama had a backup plan; have the EPA create regulations without Congressional approval that would cut just as much CO2 emissions.

The EPA got its authority to impose these economy-wrecking rules from none other than the U.S. Supreme Court in a ruling on Massachusetts v. EPA in 2007. The Court based its entire ruling on the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) claim that man is causing global warming. The Court said in a 5-4 decision that that CO2 threatens the world through global warming. Therefore CO2 is covered by the Clean Air Act’s capacious definition of an “air pollutant.”

Since then, the Climategate email scandal and a series of revelations that the IPCC’s 2007 report was fraught with pseudoscience and errors has all but thoroughly discredited the IPCC as a source, despite a huge government effort to whitewash the revelations.[1] A new release of another 5,000 emails was released in November, 2011. This new damning set of pirated emails is being called Climategate 2. In spite of this avalanche of contrary evidence, the EPA did none of its own research to show CO2 was truly a pollutant, as is required by law, but instead based its endangerment ruling solely on the “findings” of the IPCC.


According to a major report by Paul Driessen, senior policy advisor at CFACT (Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow) and author of Eco-Imperialism: Green Power Black Death, gives this warning:

Consumers in many states will pay 20% more for electricity by 2014 or shortly thereafter. In Illinois, electricity rates are expected to skyrocket 40-60%. For businesses, these price hikes will be major disincentives to hiring new workers. Struggling families will have even less for basic necessities… Even the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers says within a few years EPA’s new rules will cost up to 50,000 jobs in the utility, coal mining and railroad industries alone — and 200,000 jobs overall.

The longer the time the EPA rules are in place the worse it gets.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Green, Rotten, And Red Sustainability Indoctrination

…Then there are those Americans who think our society is an “unjust” society. They are usually the brain washed, trust fund beneficiaries, who have never had to live under the “socially-just” utopian societies they so desire. They’ve never had to be subjected to the indignities of communism in Cuba, Russia, North Korea, Iran, and other dictatorships they consider “paradise.” With every breath they take, these Americans want to fundamentally change our society to their desires and their terribly misplaced dreams that the rest of America loathes and despises. These are the “green environmentalists,” the “non-profits” who want to shape, influence, and change your consumer choices via “green options.”

You don’t have to take my word, just visit the upcoming Green Festival in Washington, D.C., September 29-30, 2012, a project of Green America: Economic Action for a Just Planet and Global Exchange.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Murder at the US Embassy: Barack Obama Cannot Attack Libya, So What Does He Do?

by David Blair

The armed mob that stormed the US consulate in Benghazi, apparently killing the American ambassador, struck at a moment loaded with symbolism. Not only did they choose a crucial stage of the US election campaign, but the assault took place on the 11th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on September 11. As such, President Barack Obama will come under overwhelming pressure to respond when he wakes in Washington this morning. Put bluntly, the destruction of diplomatic premises resulting in the murder of an ambassador would amount to an act of war…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Pollsters Threatened by Axelrod and the Obama DOJ

Wonder why the US presidential tracking polls were all showing Romney leading Obama until the DOJ brought a lawsuit against left-leaning Gallup Polls? Under the guise of attacking Gallup because it (according to the Obama-Holder wholly-owned US Department of “Justice”) presented “the government [with] inflated estimates of the number of hours that it would take to perform its services, even though it had separate and lower internal estimates of the number of hours that would be required.”

Suing a company for an “estimate” of services the government didn’t like? Now, that’s really a new one! All said government needed to do was get a quote from another polling company before making its decision. However, the reality is that member-in-chief of the Obama goon squad — David Axelrod — had both the audacity and Goebbels-like behavior to threaten polling companies for not offering more positive polls (a snarling Axelrod questioned Gallup’s entire “methodology”). After the Axelrod emails went out, Holder filed a lawsuit against Gallup polling. For Dictator-in-Chief Obama and his top minions…things happen immediately.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Remembering 9/11: Muslims for Life

by Sarah AB

This American organization was set up in order to honour the victims of 9/11 by donating blood in their memory. This month they have been holding blood drives at mosques and other community centres around the country. Muslims for Life was set up by Ahmadi Muslims but has partners within the more mainstream Muslim community such as MPAC and the American Islamic Congress…

[Author comment by Sarah AB on 11 September 2012 at 8:35 pm.]

I think the suggestion that the blood donor was indulging in some curiously purposeless — and thus all the more sinister — form of taqiyya because he only mentioned two, not all four, planes is a particularly special comment. Sometimes people on here grumble that Muslims don’t do or say more — as though they were all personally responsible for terrorism — and when an example of a positive initiative is offered — it’s pounced on as proof of deviousness.

[Reader comment by Peter in reply to SarahAB on 11 September 2012 at 8:55 pm.]

Aww, bless. You really, really don’t get it, do you?

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Statement in Response to Protests in Egypt and Libya, And Our Involvement in the Film, Innocence of Muslims

We have been contacted by the producer of the film, ‘Innocence of Muslims’, to help distribute it.

The film is not intended to insult the Muslim community, but it is intended to reveal truths about Muhammad that are possibly not widely known. The examination of his life, as we have done through International Judge Muhammad Day, through this type of close examination, it is very clear that God did not influence him in the writings of the Koran. The fruits of the religion speak for themselves. For example the recent outbreak of violence and deaths is not because of the film, it is not because of the activities that we have done and that we will continue to do. These types of violent activities must be totally rejected. These people must be held accountable. It again shows the true nature of Islam. Islam does not tolerate criticism of Muhammad, the Koran or Sharia. Because of their fear of criticism, knowing that if Islam and the Koran were closely examined, Muhammad and the Koran will be revealed for what it is, a lie and a deception.

Terry Jones

Stand Up America Now

[Return to headlines]

Europe and the EU

An Expensive Farce Germany’s Somali Pirate Trial is Pointless

When 10 Somali pirates were brought to trial earlier this year in Hamburg, many viewed it as promising a minor victory against lawlessness on the high seas. But the trial has turned into a pointless and expensive circus. The battle against piracy off the Horn of Africa won’t be won in German courtrooms.

The first 100 days of anything new are generally considered an observation period. After that comes the thumbs up or thumbs down.

This week marks the 100th day of the Somali piracy trial in Hamburg, a case of the Federal Republic of Germany versus 10 Somalis who hijacked the German freighter cargo ship MV Taipan in the Indian Ocean in April 2010, armed with AK-47s.

Under the principle of universal jurisdiction, sea piracy may be prosecuted in any country, but few Western countries have attempted it. The Hamburg court, though, has taken a self-confident approach to this trial that has drawn international attention, as if saying: We can be global, too.

The regional court in Hamburg has had 100 days to demonstrate the point of transporting defendants from a poverty-stricken, seemingly archaic, lawless country thousands of kilometers in order to put them on trial. But, in the end, there is no point.

Four judges, four lay judges, two prosecutors, 10 other court employees, 20 defense attorneys and three Somali language interpreters — along with numerous expert witnesses on subjects including conditions in war-torn Somalia, the estimation of age through carpal bone analysis, bullet holes and the Urdu language — have jointly managed to bring to light no more than what was known from the start — after all, the 10 defendants were caught red-handed by Dutch marines who stormed the ship.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Arctic Foxes Took Ice Bridge to Reach Iceland

FLUFFY, snow-white and dedicated trekkers. Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) are known for their mammoth wanderings across the ice. Those journeys may have taken some to Iceland during the Little Ice Age.

Recent research into the foxes’ genetics has revealed that there are at least five distinct groups — or haplotypes — found in Iceland. But when Greger Larson at Durham University, UK, and his team looked at fox DNA in 1000-year-old bones from archaeological sites in Iceland, they found that all of the ancient Arctic foxes belonged to just one of the five haplotypes.

“It’s too short a time for the (other four) to have evolved,” says Larson.

Instead, his team think the Little Ice Age might provide an explanation. This period of cooling, about 800 years ago, froze huge areas of the Arctic seas. It provided nomadic Arctic foxes elsewhere in the frozen north with a bridge to Iceland.

“Some foxes are known to roam for hundreds of miles on sea ice,” says Larson. “All you need is a little ice, and bang — the foxes are there.”

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Extremist Threat is Not Just About the Economy, Stupid

by Matthew Goodwin and Anthony Painter


Recent evidence suggests that concerns over national identity matter more. Those endorsing the far right also feel that these parties are meeting their anxieties over perceived threats to their identity, values and ways of life, and they felt this long before they’d even heard the words “credit crunch”. Increasingly, this “threat” is being traced by the far-right to the door of Islam…

[JP note: The greater threat is from mindrotten white liberals such as Goodwin & Painter.]

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Foreign Tourists Flock to EU

Foreign tourists are arriving in record numbers to visit popular Europe tourist spots, reports the Wall Street Journal. Spain saw a record high of 7.7 million foreign visitors in July, up 4.4 percent compared to last year. France had a 2.2 percent increase. The number of European tourists dropped.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Germany: Jews Demonstrate Over Threat to Circumcision in Germany

German Jews were joined by Christians and Muslims on Sunday evening for a demonstration calling for circumcision to remain legal. Around 500 people attended the rally, which was held in Bebelplatz in Berlin, a public square notorious as the site of book-burning ceremonies by the Nazis and their supporters in May 1933. Some of the demonstrators wore traditional Orthodox Jewish clothing, while others waved Israeli flags or signs stating: “Foreskin? No thank you!”


           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Ireland: Ex-Shop Worker Takes Case Over Hijab

A FORMER sales assistant at Dunnes Stores has claimed she wanted to work her rostered hours but could not do so as she was not permitted to wear a hijab at work. Loreta Tavoraite (35) of Parknamore, Ballincollig, Co Cork, has brought a case for unfair dismissal against Dunnes Stores (head office) at South Great Georges Street, Dublin. Ms Tavoraite, who is originally from Lithuania, began working at Dunnes Stores, Ballincollig, Co Cork on July 26th, 2007. The Employment Appeals Tribunal heard that Ms Tavoraite subsequently converted to Islam and wanted to wear a hijab, a headscarf which covers the hair, but which leaves the face exposed, at work. Staff at Dunnes Stores wear a standard uniform of a blouse, trousers or a skirt, and a type of cardigan, and no alteration to the style of the uniform is allowed, the tribunal heard…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Panel: Police at Fault in Response to Deadly UK Stadium Football Crush

Liverpool (CNN) — UK police and emergency services were criticized Wednesday for their handling of a tragedy at a soccer ground in 1989 in which 96 people died, after an independent panel for the first time reviewed thousands of documents previously kept out of public sight.

The crush at Sheffield’s Hillsborough Stadium on April 15, 1989, has cast a lasting shadow over Liverpool and the surrounding Merseyside area.

The families of those killed and injured have for two decades battled to get to the truth about what happened on that awful day — and to overturn what the independent panel found were “strenuous attempts” by police to deflect responsibility for the disaster to Liverpool fans by falsely claiming they were drunk and aggressive.

Prime Minister David Cameron said he is “profoundly sorry” about what happened and apologized for the long delay in giving answers to all those affected by “one of the greatest peacetime tragedies of the last century.”

“The new evidence that we are presented with today makes clear that these families have suffered a double injustice,” he told lawmakers in the House of Commons.

“The injustice of the appalling events — the failure of the state to protect their loved ones and the indefensible wait to get to the truth.

“And the injustice of the denigration of the deceased — that they were somehow at fault for their own deaths.”

Cameron’s apology on behalf of the government was the first offered to those whose lives were devastated by the Hillsborough disaster.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Study of Islamophobia in the Netherlands Now Available in Translation

Since 11 September 2001 — and especially since the murder of Theo van Gogh — Muslims and Islam have frequently been unfavourably portrayed at the heart of public debate.

Manifestations of Islamophobia can be found on the Internet, in comments by the PVV, and in acts of violence committed against mosques. Dutch anti-discrimination policies are coming under pressure now that this ideology has forced its way to the centre of the political stage…

[JP note: Link to English and French translations ]

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

UK: £200,000 Bill for Policing Protests Over Scout Hut in Thurnby Lodge, Leicester

Police have spent £200,000 supervising protests against plans to turn a disused Scout hut into a community centre. The cost of the operation in Thurnby Lodge, Leicester, is rising daily as discussions continue to resolve the building’s future.

Officers from city stations and as far afield as Hinckley and Coalville have had to be redeployed from their normal duties to oversee regular protests — occasionally lasting late into the night — against a plan by the Muslim group As-Salaam Trust to convert the Nursery Road building into a community centre. The protests, which began early last month, have taken place outside the nearby community centre in Thurncourt Road, where members of As-Salaam have been meeting for the past two-and-a-half years. The Leicester Mercury has learned that the operation cost the force £180,000 in August. A source has confirmed it is now edging toward £200,000, including overtime payments.

The source said: “£200,000 is a big hit, especially in these times of tightened budgets. “But we can’t turn our backs and say ‘sorry, we can’t justify the cost of this any more’. If something did go wrong and we weren’t there, we’d be slated — and rightly so. I hope a solution is found soon.” Up to 60 officers have been sent to cover the largest protests, one of which drew up to 400 people. On quieter evenings, between 20 and 30 police, with senior officers to supervise, have been sent. Officers were present at the weekend, though no formal protests were taking place…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

UK: Ed Miliband’s Silence Over TUC Thatcher ‘Death’ T-Shirts is Shameful

by Nile Gardiner

As The Telegraph’s Christopher Hope reported last night, repulsive T-shirts are being sold at the Trades Union Congress conference taunting Margaret Thatcher (whom I previously worked for), declaring that “a generation of trade unionists will dance on her grave” when she passes away:

The T-shirts, which are wrapped in clear plastic, are being marketed by the Derbyshire Unemployed Workers Centre, an organisation which provides “welfare rights advice services” and which is affiliated to the TUC. One of the garments has an image of Mrs Thatcher’s spitting image puppet, with the words “Hey ho the witch is dead” along side. Attached to the plastic is a notice urging the buyer only to wear when Lady Thatcher has died. It says: “In the event of Thatcher’s death of Thatcher open bag and wear Tee shirt immediately.” Another T-shirt features a white cross on a grave with “Thatcher” across it, and the words: “A generation of trade unionists will dance on her grave”.

The shirts have naturally sparked strong condemnation, including a hard-hitting piece from Telegraph blogger Dan Hodges. Conservative MP Conor Burns put it well when he said “these sickening sentiments speak to something disordered in the human condition.” Another MP, Priti Patel, called it “a desperate and disrespectful act by the TUC,” and even the TUC’s own secretary general Brendan Barber has disowned the T-shirts, calling them “tasteless and totally inappropriate.”


           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

UK: Lessons in Hatred and Abuse

by Francesca Coleman

As a trainee teacher in an inner-London school in the last two years, I dealt with countless remarks about my religion, ranging from the perplexing to the deeply offensive. After his students drew swastikas all over his classroom, my supervisor said simply: “It’s not our job to project our own moral compass on to the students.” Had I been any other ethnicity experiencing something similar there would doubtless have been instant outrage and punishment. Sadly, by this point I was used to this kind of reaction.

It began when, mystifyingly, a colleague told students about my religion, and the reasons for my so-called “persistent” absences (for the chagim). Later, other colleagues openly discussed my beliefs with students, without my consent or knowledge. Some were interested, but other pupils subjected me to inappropriate and insulting questions, chants and disruptions. Needless to say, had I wanted to share my private religious beliefs, I would only have done so on my own terms.

I found myself the constant prey of a group of roaming lower schoolers who would verbally abuse me everywhere and anywhere — including in my classroom — with screams of “Hitler! Hitler!” Amazingly, each time I reported an incident, it was ignored. Knowing there would be no consequences, no discipline imposed on them, only encouraged the group. Later, someone scratched “Kill Jews” on to a computer in my classroom. The school got rid of the evidence only after I involved the police…

While it has been traumatic, my experience is not the norm at all state schools. But on the off-chance that any other Jewish teacher should have to deal with anything similar, it needs to be addressed. By allowing this abuse, schools are not only allowing the next generation of antisemites to grow, but are actively breeding them.

Francesca Coleman is a pseudonym

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

UK: Mother’s Anger as Baby’s Father Escapes Jail After Fracturing Child’s Skull When He Lost His Tempersteven Pickering Admitted Assaulting His Child Logan But Got a Suspended Sentence Because of His ‘Low Intelligence’

An angry mother has hit out after her baby’s father was allowed to walk free from court despite fracturing their son’s skull when he was just 11 weeks old.

There were angry scenes in court as Steven Pickering, 32, escaped a jail term for launching an attack on tiny Logan that ‘could have killed him’.

Now, Logan’s mum Sinead Nield, 22, has told how Pickering robbed her of a year of her baby’s life as he was taken into care as police investigated who was responsible for Logan’s injuries because Pickering would not admit what he had done.

A court has heard Pickering ‘momentarily lost control’ and gripped, shook and threw down Logan, who will be three next month, on January 16, 2010.

Pickering has now admitted assault causing grievous bodily harm.

Judge Jonathan Rose, sitting at Bradford Crown Court, imposed a 12-month sentence suspended for two years, saying the only thing that kept Pickering out of jail was his low intelligence.

Martin Nield, Sinead’s uncle, shouted: ‘It’s a disgrace. You’ve let him walk the streets of Huddersfield. He has got away with hurting Logan.’

After the case, Sinead said: ‘He almost killed his own son and should have been locked up.

‘I feel disappointed and let down by the system that it has taken since 2010 for this to come to court. But even now Steven hasn’t said how the injuries were caused.’

           — Hat tip: Vlad Tepes[Return to headlines]

UK: Police Recruitment Changes Planned, May Says

Ministers are drawing up plans for some senior police officers in England and Wales to be directly recruited from outside the service, Theresa May says.

The home secretary told a conference of senior police officers the move would bring “greater diversity” to forces…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

UK: Salma Yaqoob Quits as Respect Party Leader

Decision comes after she criticised MP George Galloway over comments about rape allegations against Julian Assange

Salma Yaqoob has quit as leader of the Respect party following what she said had been an extremely difficult few weeks and a breakdown in “relations of trust and collaborative working”. Three weeks ago, Yaqoob, a former Birmingham city councillor, criticised Respect’s sole MP, George Galloway, for his suggestion that the rape allegations against the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange amounted to little more than “really bad manners” and “bad sexual etiquette”. In a statement posted on Respect’s website on Tuesday, Yaqoob said: “It is with deep regret that I have decided to resign from Respect. The last few weeks have been extremely difficult for everyone in the party. I feel necessary relations of trust and collaborative working have unfortunately broken down. I have no wish to prolong those difficulties, and indeed hope that they may now be drawn to a close.”


           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

UK: We Are Waltham Forest Plans Huge Demonstration Against Second English Defence League March in Walthamstow

CAMPAIGNERS have sworn to flood the streets of Walthamstow with demonstrators if an English Defence League (EDL) march planned for October goes ahead. We Are Waltham Forest (WAWF) clashed with the EDL when it thwarted the group’s attempt to march through Forest Road on September 1, blocking off part of the route with 3,000 protesters, and vowed to come again in larger numbers if the extremists return. The EDL, which describes itself as a movement against Islamic extremism and denies claims it is racist, has announced a planned return to Walthamstow on October 27, postponing a demonstration in Norwich to come…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

North Africa

Blasphemous Film: US Ambassador Killed in Benghazi

(AGI) Benghazi — The US ambassador to Libya and three staff members died in an attack on the US consulate in Benghazi last night.

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

Cairo and Benghazi US Consulate Attacks Show Post Arab Spring Challenges

by Richard Spencer

The attacks on US diplomatic compounds in Cairo and Benghazi are a reminder of two intractable problems.

The first is the difficulty facing two key Arab states which have overthrown their security apparatus — perhaps more will follow — as they try to re-establish security without the brutality on which they have depended in the past. The second is a more profound culture clash, between Muslims who believe that their faith must be respected, even in non-Muslim countries, and the absolute western belief in free speech…

As a piece of graffiti scrawled near the American embassy said: “If your freedom of speech has no limits, may you accept our freedom of action.”

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Egypt: Ex Premier Shafiq Indicted for Corruption

Int’l warrant out for former presidential candidate

(ANSAmed) — Cairo, September 11 — Egyptian authorities have indicted former Egyptian Premier Ahmad Shafiq for corruption and issued an international warrant for his arrest, public prosecution sources said on Tuesday. Shafiq, who was Egypt’s last premier under ousted President Hosni Mubarak, fled to the United Arab Emirates with his family following his failed bid for office in the last Egyptian presidential election.

The former premier was charged with corruption for the fraudulent 1993 purchase of a plot of land from an Air Force association he led at the time by Mubarak’s two sons, onetime heir apparent Gamal and wealthy businessman Alaa. Both on trial for insider trading, they have been incarcerated in Tora prison for months. The indictement also includes other association board members, who have been prohibited from leaving the country.

Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have no extradition treaty.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Egypt: Court Lifts Ban on Veils for Egyptair Cabin Crew

Observant male cabin crew free to grow their beards

(ANSAmed) — Cairo — State-owned EgyptAir hostesses can wear a veil and male cabin crew members can grow their beards, an administrative court ruled on Tuesday.

The airline suspended international flights for 12 hours from Cairo on Friday on a cabin crew strike over pay and conditions, including the right to wear religiously-mandated veils and beards. The company has allowed them for ground personnel but not for cabin crew.

The court ruled in favor of a dozen stewards, who appealed against the company’s long-standing regulations, air stewards’ union leader Mohmour Khairi told ANSA.

The union put wage demands aside because of the country’s grace economic crisis, Khairi said. The Friday strike cost EgyptAir 50 million Egyptian pounds (8 million euros), the union leader explained.

The court’s decision follows on the recent lifting of a similar, long-standing ban in Egyptian public media. In July, Egyptian government correspondent Lamiaa Mouafi was the first journalist to wear a veil on camera. Last week, Egyptian viewers saw the first veiled anchorwoman on public TV.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Egypt: Mursi Meets UK Foreign Secretary

President Mohamed Morsi met on Tuesday 11/9/2012 with UK Foreign Secretary William Hague, who arrived in Cairo on Monday 10/9/2012. The meeting addressed bilateral relations and the Syrian crisis along with the latest developments in the Middle East and the Palestinian issue. Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr and British Ambassador to Cairo James Watt attended the meeting.

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Italy Says US Consulate Attack ‘Abominable’

(ANSAmed) — LA VALLETTA (MALTA), SEPTEMBER 12 — Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi on Wednesday described as “abominable” the attack on the U.S. consulate in the Libyan city of Benghazi in which the U.S. ambassador to the country, Christopher Stevens, was killed along with three other State Department employees.

“The news from Benghazi elicits horror and indignation,” Terzi said during a visit to Malta after Stevens was killed, reportedly by a rocket attack in a protest over a American-produced movie that is said to insult the Prophet Muhammad. “My thoughts go, above all, to the families of the victims of an abominable act that hits men working on the front line to give back hope and support to a people that wants to build a future of freedom and democracy.

“I express my most sincere and profound solidarity to the United States, in particular to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, for the State Department’s sacrifice of human lives on a very sad day for everyone”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Killing of U.S. Ambassador, 3 Staffers Condemned by Libyan Officials

CAIRO — Senior officials in Libya on Wednesday condemned the killing of the U.S. ambassador to the country and three other Americans by armed protesters in a furor over an anti-Muslim video.

The mob sacked the U.S. Consulate in the eastern city of Benghazi on Tuesday, killing Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three U.S. government employees. The attack came hours after a demonstration in Cairo, where protesters scaled the wall of the U.S. Embassy and pulled down the American flag in anger over the video, produced in the United States, which protesters said mocked the prophet Muhammad.

“This is a criminal act that will not go unpunished. This is part of a series of cowardice acts by supporters of the former regime who want to undermine Libya’s revolution,” Prime Minister Abdurrahim Keib told reporters.

Keib said the details of the attack were under investigation.

Libyan President Mohamed Magariaf apologized for the deaths and vowed that justice would be served.

“We refuse that our nation’s lands be used for cowardice and revengeful acts. It is not a victory for God’s Sharia or his prophet for such disgusting acts to take place,” Magariaf said. “We apologize to the United States, the people of America, and the entire world. We and the American government are standing on the same side, we stand on the same side against outlaws.”

The killing of Stevens and the other U.S. personnel is a severe test to the relationship between Libya and the West after an air campaign by the United States and its NATO allies helped Libya’s current leadership topple Moammar Kadafi’s regime in 2011. Even as NATO aircraft targeted Kadafi’s military forces, concerns were raised regarding the radical Muslim element hidden in Libyans’ revolt against the longtime strongman.

Early Wednesday morning, President Obama released a statement: “I strongly condemn the outrageous attack on our diplomatic facility in Benghazi, which took the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. Right now, the American people have the families of those we lost in our thoughts and prayers. They exemplified America’s commitment to freedom, justice, and partnership with nations and people around the globe, and stand in stark contrast to those who callously took their lives.”

Obama concluded his statement saying, “The brave Americans we lost represent the extraordinary service and sacrifices that our civilians make every day around the globe. As we stand united with their families, let us now redouble our own efforts to carry their work forward.”

A White House official said national security advisor Tom Donilon first briefed the president on the violence in Benghazi on Tuesday afternoon, at the top of a weekly meeting with the Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey.

The president was updated throughout the evening, and notified late Tuesday that Stevens was unaccounted for. Obama learned Wednesday that Stevens was confirmed dead Wednesday morning, the official said.

In a statement Wednesday, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said one of the other dead was Sean Smith, an information management officer with the State Department and a 10-year veteran of the foreign service who had served in Iraq, South Africa, Canada and the Netherlands. He was a husband and father of two, the statement said.

U.S. officials have yet to identify the other victims.

Wanis al-Sharif, Libya’s deputy minister of the interior, told the Associated Press that Stevens and three others had died as the crowd torched the consulate in Benghazi hours after demonstrators scaled the wall of the U.S. Embassy in Cairo in protest over the anti-Muslim video. A Twitter message from Libya’s deputy prime minister, Mustafa Abu Shagur, condemned the death of Stevens and the other American personnel killed in the attack.

The protesters in Benghazi set fire to the consulate and fired guns into the air in protest over the film, according to Reuters reporters on the scene. Looters reportedly grabbed desks, chairs and even washing machines from the empty compound.

Egyptian protesters had earlier gathered at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo in protest over a video that they said mocked the prophet Muhammad, claiming it had been made by Egyptian Coptic immigrants in the U.S.

The Cairo protesters pulled down the U.S. flag, and in its place raised a black flag that read: “There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is his prophet” before Egyptian security forces sought to tame the crowd.

As night fell, protesters continued to gather outside the embassy in one of the biggest demonstrations in the city since the fall of Hosni Mubarak’s government early last year. Security forces surrounded the embassy compound to prevent protesters from again storming it, though some demonstrators remained on the wall, waving black flags.

As many as 2,000 demonstrators rallied outside the embassy in a gathering called by the conservative Islamic Salafist movement.

Before the rally, the private Al Nas television channel, run by Salafists, played some of the video posted on YouTube, which a host and a commentator said insulted Islam. The video shown on the channel refers to Muhammad and his followers as “child lovers.” It also shows the prophet speaking to a supposed Muslim donkey, asking him whether he loves women.

The channel’s enraged host and a commentator then demanded to know how Islam could be treated in such a debasing way.

The video has been promoted online by Florida preacher Terry Jones, whose 2011 burning of a Koran triggered riots in Afghanistan. In a statement, Jones called the assault on the embassy in Egypt proof that Muslims “have no tolerance for anything outside of Muhammad.”

Nader Bakar, a spokesman of the Al Nour party, the political arm of the Salafist movement, denied any involvement in the uproar.

“We were there for a couple of hours in a peaceful protest,” said Bakar, who had called for the demonstration the day before. “We are against this movie being made to defame the prophet. The U.S. Embassy understood this, and they issued a statement condemning hateful rhetoric.”

[Return to headlines]

Libya Commemorates 9/11

When President Obama intervened in Libya last year, he claimed that “it’s in our national interest to act” to remove a tyrant who — in response to Bush’s invasion of Iraq — had just given up his weapons of mass destruction and pledged to be America’s BFF.

Apparently Gadhafi neglected to also tell Obama, “I’ve got your back.”

Obama said: “We must stand alongside those who believe in the same core principles that have guided us through many storms … our support for a set of universal rights, including the freedom for people to express themselves and choose their leaders; our support for the governments that are ultimately responsive to the aspirations of the people.”

The Libyan mob was the equivalent of our founding fathers! (If you overlook the part about it being a murderous Islamic mob.)

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Libya, Egypt, Embassy Attacked

On these shores, Americans commemorated the cold-blooded gleeful murder of thousands of their fellow men and women by bowing their heads and enlisting in one of the free work projects of the National Day of Service listed at, a combination that says all that needs to be said about our present day relationship with our government.

In newly liberated Benghazi, the city that Obama named as his moral imperative for fighting an illegal war against the will of the American people, gunmen opened fire on the American embassy and killed an American security guard. That dead man is the first American casualty in the Libyan War — a casualty that will be acknowledged and honored around the same time that someone in the media calls the Libyan War, a war, instead of sticking to the shameless lie of a No Fly Zone.

In Cairo, a mob of a thousand climbed the wall, tore down the American flag, tore it to pieces, burned it and tried to replace it with their own flag with the words, “There is no God but Allah and Mohammad is his messenger”. That message was the same one that the murderers of Americans have shouted, written and videotaped themselves chanting in one form or another.

As befits a great power, the US Embassy in Cairo responded by condemning “the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims.” The US Embassy’s statement was virtually indistinguishable from the one issued by the beleaguered Christian Copts of Egypt. The Christians of Egypt act that way because they live at the merciless mercy of Muslims. Apparently so do we.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Obama Administration Officials Say Attack in Libya May Have Been Planned

The Obama administration suspects that the fiery attack in Libya that killed the American ambassador and three other diplomats may have been planned rather than a spontaneous mob getting out of control, American officials said Wednesday.

Officials in Washington studying the events of the past 24 hours have focused on the differences between the protests on the American embassy in Cairo and the attack on the consulate in Benghazi, the Libyan city where Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and the other Americans were killed.

The protesters in Cairo appeared to be a genuinely spontaneous unarmed mob angered by an anti-Islam video produced in the United States. By contrast, it appeared the attackers in Benghazi were armed with mortars and rocket-propelled grenades. Intelligence reports are inconclusive at this point, officials said, but indications suggest the possibility that an organized group had either been waiting for an opportunity to exploit like the protests over the video or perhaps even generated the protests as a cover for their attack.

[Return to headlines]

Obama Vows to Track Down Ambassador’s Killers

WASHINGTON/BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) — President Barack Obama branded the killing of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans an “outrageous attack” on Wednesday and vowed to track down the perpetrators, while ordering a tightening of diplomatic security worldwide.

The ambassador, Christopher Stevens, and the other Americans were killed after Islamist gunmen attacked the U.S. consulate and a safe house refuge in Benghazi on Tuesday night. The attackers were part of a mob blaming America for a film they said insulted the Prophet Mohammad.

The violence in the eastern city, a cradle of Libya’s U.S.-backed uprising against Muammar Gaddafi last year, came on the anniversary of al Qaeda’s attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001. Another assault was mounted on the U.S. embassy in Cairo in which protesters, who included Islamists and teenage soccer fans, tore down and burned a U.S. flag.

U.S. government officials said the Benghazi attack may have been planned in advance and there were indications that members of a militant faction calling itself Ansar al Sharia — which translates as Supporters of Islamic Law — may have been involved.

They also said some reporting from the region suggested that members of Al-Qaeda’s north Africa-based affiliate, known as Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, may have been involved.

“It bears the hallmarks of an organized attack,” one U.S. official said. However, some U.S. officials cautioned against assuming that the attacks were deliberately organized to coincide with the September 11 anniversary.

The violence in Benghazi and Cairo threatened to spread to other Muslim countries on Wednesday. A U.S. official said Washington had ordered the evacuation of all U.S. personnel from Benghazi to Tripoli and was reducing staffing in the capital to emergency levels.

Police fired teargas at angry demonstrators outside the U.S. embassy in Tunisia and several hundred people gathered in front of the U.S. embassy in Sudan. In Morocco, a few dozen protesters burned American flags and chanted slogans near the U.S. consulate in Casablanca.

Obama vowed on Wednesday to bring the Benghazi killers to justice. He called the attack “outrageous and shocking” but insisted it would not threaten relations with Libya’s new elected government.


The president said he had ordered an increase in security at U.S. diplomatic posts around the globe. A U.S. official said a Marine anti-terrorist security team was being sent to Libya to boost security there.

The attacks could alter U.S. attitudes towards the wave of revolutions across the Arab world, which toppled secularist authoritarian leaders in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia, bringing Islamists to power.

The violence could also have an impact on the closely-fought U.S. presidential election campaign.

Mitt Romney, Obama’s rival in the November vote, criticized the president’s response to the crisis. He said the timing of a statement from the U.S. embassy in Cairo denouncing “efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims” made Obama look weak as protesters were attacking U.S. missions.

He said it was “disgraceful” to be seen to be apologizing for American values of free speech. Obama’s campaign accused Romney of scoring political points at a time of national tragedy.

Images of ambassador Stevens purportedly taken after he died circulated on the Internet. One image showed him being carried, with a white shirt pulled up and a cut on his forehead.

Libya’s Deputy Interior Minister Wanis Al-Sharif said U.S. staff were rushed to a Benghazi safe house after the initial attack on the consulate and an evacuation plane with U.S. commando units then arrived from Tripoli to evacuate them from the safe house.

“It was supposed to be a secret place and we were surprised the armed groups knew about it. There was shooting,” Sharif said. Two U.S. personnel were killed there, he said. Two other people were killed at the main consular building and between 12 and 17 wounded.

The attack raised questions about the future U.S. diplomatic presence in Libya, relations between Washington and Tripoli, and the unstable security situation after Gaddafi’s overthrow.

Witnesses said the mob included tribesmen, militia and other gunmen. Hamam, a 17-year-old who took part in the attack, said Ansar al-Sharia cars arrived at the start of the protest but left once fighting started.

“The protesters were running around the compound just looking for Americans, they just wanted to find an American so they could catch one,” he said.

[Return to headlines]

Stakelbeck: Is the Middle East Better Off Than 2 Years Ago?

The question everyone is asking here in the U.S. during this election season is “Are you better off than four years ago?” But in the Middle East, the question regarding the Obama administration is, “Are you better off than you were two years ago, pre-Arab Spring?” The answer from everybody in the region—other than the Muslim Brotherhood and the hardcore Salafists who are now ascendant—is a resounding “No.”

Yesterday’s attacks on the U.S. Embassies in Egypt and Libya were the latest examples that America’s position in the region has never been weaker.

Click here to read my latest blog post for more.

           — Hat tip: Erick Stakelbeck[Return to headlines]

The Hollywood Connection: How a Real Estate Man’s Film Led to Rage in Libya

The Innocence of Muslims drew almost no one to the cinema in California. In Benghazi it provoked deadly fury

A vehicle in flames inside the US consulate compound in Benghazi, Libya. Photograph: Str/AFP/Getty Images

The long fuse that led to the explosion of violence that killed the US ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, was lit last summer in the pleasant hills of southern California, where a man who claims to be an Israeli-American real estate developer, Sam Bacile, set about making a film.

The citrus groves and villas around Los Angeles are home not just to Hollywood but to a lucrative underside, a vast industry pumping out huge numbers of amateur, gonzo productions for internet distribution, most of them pornographic. But few have been intended to be as grotesquely offensive as Bacile’s production, and none have had such explosive consequences.

By his own account, Bacile raised a budget of $5m (£3m) from 100 unnamed Jewish donors for The Innocence of Muslims, which he wrote and directed himself, with the aim of demonstrating his belief, as he described it to the Wall Street Journal, that “Islam is a cancer”.

To that end, Bacile got his amateur cast to depict the prophet Muhammad as a feckless philanderer who approved of child abuse. It took three months, 59 actors and about 45 crew. The result was two hours of stumbling dialogue and wooden acting among flimsy sets, and a stream of gratuitous insults aimed at Muslims. It was screened in an almost empty cinema in Hollywood earlier this year.

In another age, that would probably have been the end of the story. But in the YouTube era, in which the voices of fanatics are amplified, it was a bomb primed for detonation, months later and thousands of miles away.

Bacile posted a 13-minute English-language trailer on YouTube in early July but it was only in the past week that it appears to have caught the attention of combatants in the online culture wars.

A Florida pastor, Terry Jones, who had triggered protests in the Islamic world by burning the Qur’an and with his campaign to stop the construction of a mosque at the site of the 9/11 attacks, promoted the film on his website and announced his intention to broadcast the trailer at his Gainesville church this week.

“It is an American production, not designed to attack Muslims but to show the destructive ideology of Islam,” he said in a statement. “The movie further reveals in a satirical fashion the life of Muhammad.”

The film clip was also spotted and promoted last week by Morris Sadik, an Egyptian Coptic Christian based in California who runs a small virulently Islamophobic group called the National American Coptic Assembly. It was later denounced by mainstream Copts in Egypt, but it was too late to stop it going viral.

At some point over the summer a version of the YouTube trailer surfaced with the dialogue dubbed in Egyptian Arabic — Bacile says he has no idea who did the translation but has claimed it sounded accurate — and the translated clip was picked up by a firebrand Cairo television host, Sheikh Khaled Abdallah, who has a record of focusing on perceived threats to Islam and amplifying them. He aired clips from the video on his television show on Saturday, and the same video clips were posted to YouTube on Monday.

As the Arab audience for the film grew exponentially, militant Islamists called for a mass protest at the US embassy in Cairo. The organisers told Associated Press that planning began last week when Sadik began promoting the trailers but the support for the demonstration snowballed after the Sheikh Abdallah programme on Saturday.

A crowd of some 2,000 is reported to have gathered outside the embassy walls in Cairo on Tuesday night, catching the local security services flat-flooted. Most of the diplomats and local staff had left early and a few dozen of the demonstrators were able to scale the wall, take down the stars and stripes and replace it with a black flag. The Egyptian police only managed to evict them from the compound by late evening.

By that time, however, the spark had jumped westwards to the Libyan city of Benghazi. According to al-Jazeera, an extremist militia called Ansar al-Sharia, one of many such armed groups staking out little fiefdoms in the aftermath of Muammar Gaddafi’s fall, heard about the storming of the Cairo embassy and the American film.

According to al-Jazeera’s correspondent in Benghazi, Suleiman Idrissi, “At about 11.30 pm a group of people calling themselves Islamic law [Sharia] supporters heard there would be an American movie insulting the prophet Muhammad. Once they heard this news they came out out of their military garrison, and went into the streets calling on people to go ahead and attack the American consulate in Benghazi.”

Rocket-propelled grenades were reported to have been fired from a farm next door to the consulate, and film clips on al-Jazeera show men roaming through the ornate gardens amid vehicles, vegetation and buildings in flames. Ambassador Stevens, who was on a short visit to Benghazi, is reported to have died from smoke inhalation, along with an American computer expert at the consulate, Sean Smith, and two security guards.

Smith was an internet gaming enthusiast and was chatting online to another player at the time of the attack. According to the other player, who goes by the online handle of The_Mittani, Smith “said ‘

‘ and ‘GUNFIRE’ and then disconnected and never returned”.

By Wednesday, Sam Bacile was in hiding. He spoke to Associated Press from an undisclosed location, saying he had not expected such a furious reaction. He said: “I feel sorry for the embassy. I am mad.” But Bacile still insisted that the movie would help Israel by exposing what he described as Islam’s flaws to the world.

“My plan is to make a series of 200 hours,” he said.

[Return to headlines]

Tunisia: Islamic Party Proposes Referendum on Bigamy

To recognize common-law marriages, Arrafah leader says

(ANSAmed) — TUNIS, SEPTEMBER 12 — Newly recognized Islamic party Arrafah has called for a national referendum on the restoration of bigamy during its constituent assembly in Sfax, founding party president Mohamed Fekih said in a radio interview on Wednesday.

The idea is to recognize the existence of “coutumier” marriages, or marriages by habit and repute, that are not celebrated by an officiant but that attest to the link between two people, Fekih explained. His party is not against the statute on persons, which bans polygamy, he said.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

U.S. Embassy in Egypt Cowers to Extremists

by Kathleen McKinley

Our Embassy in Egypt was attacked today. A mob climbed the wall, tried to burn, but then tore down the American flag, and replaced it with an Islamic one that said, “There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his prophet.” How does the U.S. Embassy react? It releases this press release:

The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims — as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. Today, the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Americans are honoring our patriots and those who serve our nation as the fitting response to the enemies of democracy. Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.

I get the importance of trying to calm a violent mob, and smooth things over before they get worse, I really do. But this seems to blame the filmmakers only, and leave no responsibility to the ones inciting violence and desecrating our flag. This is much like saying that a tight dress on a woman caused rape. Was the movie offensive to Muslims? I am sure that it is. Should we condemn the movie for being offensive to Muslims? Yes. But that does NOT excuse this mob. They desecrated our flag. At our embassy. There is no excuse for that. But that press release from our Embassy seems to do just that. Here’s a idea. Do what decent people in the world do when they are offended. They peacefully protest. They boycott. They write letters. They voice their opinion. They don’t kill an American in a US consulate attack in Libya.

I will be the first to admit that there are feelings of mistrust, and even hatred for Muslims, in this country by some. Our embassy somehow excusing this kind of mob violent extemist behavior only fans the flames of that hate here. We cannot excuse human indecency when it devolves into violence. Ever…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

‘US Ambassador Killed’ In Libya Protest — Live Updates

British diplomats in Libya ‘are safe’

The British Foreign Office says “all our staff are safe and accounted for” in Libya. Apart from that, and the earlier statement from William Hague, officials are remaining tight-lipped.

Ambassador’s bodyguards also reported killed

Al-Jazeera has some more details of the consulate attack: The ambassador was paying a short visit to Benghazi when the consulate came under attack on Tuesday night, Al Jazeera’s Suleiman Idrissi reported from the eastern Libyan city. He died of suffocation during the attack, along with two US security personnel who were accompanying him, security sources told Al Jazeera. Another consulate employee, whose nationality could not immediately be confirmed, was also killed. Two other staffers were injured, Idrissi reported. The bodies of the dead were transported to the Benghazi international airport, to be flown to Tripoli and then onwards to a major US airbase in Germany…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

US Ambassador ‘Killed in Libya Attack’

Four US officials are reportedly killed in Libya as gunmen protesting about a film they say offends Islam attack the US embassy

The US ambassador to Libya and three other embassy staff were killed in Tuesday’s attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, say reports. They died as an armed mob protesting over a film they say offends Islam attacked the US consulate. It is not clear if the ambassador was killed in his car or the compound. “The US ambassador and three staff members were killed when gunmen fired rockets at them,” an official in Benghazi told Reuters.

Gunmen attacked the compound on Tuesday evening, clashing with Libyan security forces before the latter withdrew as they came under heavy fire. Reporters on the scene said they could see looters raiding the building, walking off with desks, chairs and washing machines. It followed an attack in the Egyptian capital Cairo, when protesters climbed the walls of the US embassy and tore down the American flag and burned it. The protests were sparked by outrage over a video being promoted on YouTube by extreme anti-Muslim groups in the US. Demonstrators say the $5m film, called The Innocence Of Muslims, insults the Prophet Mohammed.It apparently depicts him as a fraud, showing him having sex and calling for massacres. Many Muslims consider any depiction of the prophet to be offensive.

Earlier, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she had called the Libyan government to coordinate more protection for Americans in the country. “Some have sought to justify this vicious behaviour as a response to inflammatory material posted on the internet,” she said. “The US deplores any intentional effort to denigrate the religious beliefs of others. Our commitment to religious tolerance goes back to the very beginning of our nation. But let me be clear: There is never any justification for violent acts of this kind.” Libyan officials said it remained unclear whether the two protests in Benghazi and Cairo had been coordinated. Benghazi was the launch-pad of last year’s revolution which overthrew Colonel Muammar Gaddafi and is a seat of Islamist politics in Libya.

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

US Ambassador to Libya Reported Murdered on 9/11: A Wicked Attempt to Manipulate American Politics — and It’s Working

by Damian Thompson

The reported murder of the American ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, on September 11 is a crude and sickening attempt by Islamists to disturb the internal peace of the United States in a such a way as to throw its election process into disarray. And it seems to be working. Here’s Mitt Romney, speaking before reports of the ambassador’s death emerged: “I’m outraged by the attacks on American diplomatic missions in Libya and Egypt and by the death of an American consulate worker in Benghazi. It’s disgraceful that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathise with those who waged the attacks.”

Here’s the Obama campaign: “We are shocked that, at a time when the United States of America is confronting the tragic death of one of our diplomatic officers in Libya, Governor Romney would choose to launch a political attack.”

According to AFP, “Romney appeared to be referring to a statement from the US embassy in Cairo — issued hours before the protest — in which it condemned ‘the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims — as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions’.” President Obama will indeed have tough questions to answer about why Mr Stevens was vulnerable to this attack, on the anniversary of 9/11 of all days. But it’s hard to read Romney’s statement without thinking that the Republican contender was jumping in with indecent haste. This bickering is more proof, as if any were needed, that American politics is not only disastrously divided but opportunistic. As the Islamists know perfectly well.

[Reader comment by leroy-jenkins on 12 September 2012 at about 1115 hrs.]

Say what you like about timing but Romney’s point was a fair one. I mean these are people that think murdering diplomats is the hight of political discourse, appologising to them isn’t going to help the situation it will make them bolder. […]

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

US Ambassador ‘Killed in Libya’

The US ambassador to Libya has died after being attacked by militiamen storming the US consulate in the eastern city of Benghazi, reports say.

The ambassador was said to be among four US officials killed in a protest over a US-produced film that is said to insult the Prophet Muhammad. The US state department has only confirmed the death of one official — but it has not named him. Protesters over the film have also attacked the US embassy in Cairo.

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Israel and the Palestinians

MI6 Boss ‘Visited Israeli Prime Minister to Urge Against Attacking Iran’

The head of MI6, Sir John Sawers, paid a visit to Israel’s Prime Minister to urge him not to back strikes against Iran, it was reported last night.

Sir John paid a personal visit to Benjamin Netanyahu to appeal to the leader to hold fire after he appeared to be impatient over the UK and US’s approach towards Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his nuclear programme. Yesterday, Mr Netanyahu said the US did not have the “moral right” to stop Israel from taking action against Iran, where he is concerned by a number of nuclear sites. “The world tells Israel to wait because there is still time,” he said. “And I ask: Wait for what? Until when? Those in the international community who refuse to put red lines before Iran don’t have a moral right to place a red light before Israel.” It was understood Sir John met with Mr Netanyahu and his defence minister Ehud Barak to insist it was still possible that diplomatic and economic sanctions could work. According to the Daily Mail, Sir John also suggested enforcing the sanctions more rigorously in an unusual diplomatic visit.


           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Nazareth Imam Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for Incitement

Spiritual leader convicted for supporting terror organizations

The imam of a Nazareth mosque was sentenced on Tuesday to three years in prison for supporting terrorist organizations and incitement to violence.

The Nazareth Magistrate’s Court found that Nazim Mahmoud Salim Scapa, 47, encouraged terror attacks and robberies against Jews and Christian tourists in his sermons at Shihab al-Din mosque, where he was imam for 15 years. A terror organization allegedly inspired by Scapa has been charged for the 2009 murder of cab driver Efim Weinstein…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Middle East

Arab Media Denounce Syrian Girls Trafficking

Desperate parents sell their underage daughters

(ANSAmed) — BEIRUT, SEPT 10- Syrian girls, even under 15, sold as “wives” for a few hundred euro from desperate parents to men from different Arab countries. This, according to reports by some media of the Gulf countries, is among the terrible consequences of violence in Syria, which have driven many thousands to seek refuge in neighboring countries, ending up in refugee camps. It “became common”, explains journalist Hassan from the columns of the daily paper The National, to see on some Arabs online forums requests from men such as “Syrian girls wanted, purpose marriage.” But this would just be a ploy to “buy” minors with the sole purpose of sexual enjoyment, he adds. Bid prices, according to the press sources, range on average from 500 to 1,000 Saudi riyals, i.e.

from 105 to 210 euro. The girls are found among refugees in Jordan and end up in prevalence in Saudi Arabia. But similar cases were reported in Iraq and Turkey.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Three Men and a Couch

by Diana West

From a joint statement by Sens. Graham, Lieberman and McCain on the burning of the US consulate in Benghazi and murders of the US ambassador and three staffers.

“Yesterday’s attack is a tragic and terrible reminder that — despite the hopes of the Arab Spring — the forces of violent extremism in the Middle East are far from defeated, and that the revolutions inspired by millions of people who dream of freedom and democracy can still be hijacked by small groups of violent extremists who are eager to kill to advance their evil ideology.”

The main “hope” on the part of Tweedles Dum, Dum and Dee is that there in fact exist “millions of people” who dream of freedom — not “huriyya” — and democracy — not sharia — in the Middle East.

Alas, there is no evidence of the senators’ dream-millions of Muslims with a deep and abiding connection to the values and principles the senators espouse. That’s because such Judeo-Christian-derived values and principles are at odds with the Islamic culture that has, quite naturally, set the perspectives and formed the core of the societies across this region. (Except, of course, for the Jewish state of Israel.) The senators could examine 14 centuries of violent jihad that brutally converted northern Africa, large sections of Europe and the Near East into Islamic servitude to understand why the basis of such values and principles disappeared. They could, more conveniently. simply review recent Pew polling that reveals the results of the centuries of relentless Islamization: large majorities in Islamic countries actually like Islamic law (“strict sharia”) and hope for the return of the caliphate. But the Three Amigos prefer to dream on…

           — Hat tip: Diana West[Return to headlines]

South Asia

Afghanistan: NATO Copter Destroyed by Taliban at Base

KABUL, Afghanistan — A coalition heavy-transport helicopter parked inside the sprawling Bagram Air Base was hit and destroyed by insurgent fire late Monday, killing three Afghan service members who were on board, NATO said Tuesday. NATO service members also on the helicopter, a Chinook CH-47, at the time of the attack were wounded, but there were no other fatalities, said Lt. Col. Hagen Messer, a spokesman for the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Pakistan Factory Fires Kill 191

Building safety standards criticised after dual disaster strikes underwear and shoe factories in Karachi and Lahore

Factory fires in Pakistan’s two biggest cities have killed 191 people in a disaster blamed on barred windows, shoddy building standards and the flouting of basic safety regulations.

In the coastal megalopolis of Karachi 166 people were killed after becoming trapped in an underwear factory which caught fire on Tuesday evening. Many others were injured after trying to escape by jumping out of high windows of the five-floor building, including a pregnant woman…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Far East

David Cameron Ridiculed in Chinese Newspaper

The cartoon in today’s Global Times, a Chinese newspaper with strong links to the Communist leadership, shows David Cameron with a devil perched on his shoulder.

The headline reads “UK politics becomes a ghost of itself”. The thrust of the comment piece, written by one of the paper’s editors, is a personal attack on David Cameron.

One paragraph reads:

The Olympic Games were meant to signify a British rebirth. Instead, the wit and comedy with which London 2012 scintillated showed that the UK may always keep b******** on. But Cameron’s contribution to this summer of revival has been very limited. Cameron is not the figurehead of this festival. If anybody became the face of the Olympics, it was the cartoonish Mayor of London Boris Johnson who may be casting his peepers on 10 Downing Street.

The article is another sign of how political relations between the UK and China are at a low…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Australia — Pacific

New Zealand Grants Legal Personhood Rights — To a River

I keep warning that this “nature rights” movement is beginning to bite, and people keep rolling their eyes. But New Zealand just granted rights to a river.

From the New Zealand Herald story:

Meet the Whanganui. You might call it a river, but in the eyes of the law, it has the standings of a person.

In a landmark case for the Rights of Nature, officials in New Zealand recently granted the Whanganui, the nation’s third-longest river, with legal personhood “in the same way a company is, which will give it rights and interests”.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Sub-Saharan Africa

The Election of Hassan Sheikh Mohamud Could End an Era of Hopelessness in Somalia

by David Blair

The election of a Somali president would once have passed largely unnoticed — and for good reason. After all, what could it possibly mean to become the leader of a failed state that exists only as lines on a map? But the era of hopelessness in Somalia is drawing to a close — and the election of Hassan Sheikh Mohamud as president on Monday is a genuine milestone.


           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Latin America

Mexico Extradites Zeta Drugs Cartel Founder Over Killing of US Agent

Mexico extradited to the United States on Tuesday one of the founders of the brutal Zetas drug cartel who had been linked to the killing of a US customs agent last year.

The Mexican Attorney General’s office said that former soldier Jesus Rejon, known as Z-7, was handed over to face trial at a federal court in Washington on drug-trafficking charges.

Rejon was captured in July 2011 after being sought in connection with the roadside shooting of two US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, one of whom died. The Attorney General’s office did not mention the February 2011 killing in its statement on the extradition. The shooting of the ICE agents sparked anger in the United States and prompted a round of finger-pointing between Mexican and US politicians over the failure to curb drug-related violence that has plagued Mexico in recent years. The Zetas have been blamed for some of the worst atrocities to hit Mexico during this period. Turf wars between drug gangs and their clashes with security forces have claimed more than 55,000 lives over the past six years…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]

Mexico Extradites San Jose Mosque Imam

by Lori Lowenthal Marcus

The news of the arrest was a major story in Mexico, but had little coverage on American or Israeli media sites. It should have.

Over the weeked, three suspected members of the terrorist organization Hezbollah, a proxy group for Iran, were arrested in the capital city of the Yucatan Province, Mexico. One of the three, Rafic Mohamad Labboun Allaboun, 44, is a Lebanese American. According to Benito Rosell Isaac, head of the Mexican National Migration Institute (INM) in Yucatan, Labboun had a warrant out for his arrest from Houston, Texas, and he was deported there within hours of his arrest. He had a court appearance on Monday morning, September 10, and then was returned to the San Jose division of the Northern District Court of California. The news of the arrest was a major story in Mexico, but had little coverage on American or Israeli media sites. It should have…

           — Hat tip: JP[Return to headlines]


Turkey: Police Round Up 138 Illegal Migrants at EU Border

From Algeria, Palestine, Morocco, Syria, among other countries

(ANSAmed) — Ankara, September 11 — Turkish police arrested 138 illegal migrants trying to cross into the EU in Edirne province, at the Greek-Bulgarian border, Anadolu news agency reported on Tuesday.

The migrants are from Afghanistan, Algeria, Burma, Eritrea, Ghana, Laos, Morocco, Palestine, Somalia and Syria. They will be processed and deported to their countries of origin, according to Anadolu.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Culture Wars

Gawker: ‘Pedophilia is a Sexual Orientation’

[WARNING: Disturbing content.]

The following headline actually appeared at Gawker Friday: “Born This Way: Sympathy and Science for Those Who Want to Have Sex with Children.”

The article, written by Gawker West Coast editor Cord Jefferson, was even worse (emphasis added throughout):


That bears repeating: “[P]edophilia is an illness deserving of the public’s sympathy…pedophilia is a sexual orientation.”


Yes, the article really said “it’s futile to send pedophiles to prison in an effort to alter their attractions.”

But there was still more.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]


Anonymous said...

There's something fishy about Bacile, the movie he created, and the timing of the attacks the movie furnished a pretext for.

Who really financed the movie? Individuals, Mossad, or al Qaeda?

Who awakened this cinematic drivel in time for the attacks?

Who really benefits the most from the attacks—Obama, or people who wish to show him up?

Will the American response to the attacks provide a diversion for some other major action planned for sometime shortly before the Presidential election?

Pleasant dreams.