Sunday, January 12, 2003

News Feed 20120930

Financial Crisis
»Bristol, England, Adopts Alternative Currency
»Dollar Falls Most Since 2011 as Central Banks Bump Up Stimulus
»3-Star General Warns: Muslim Brotherhood Has Infiltrated Every Major US Federal Agency
»American Muslims Launch Petition to Limit Free Speech
»Blacks and Hispanics Soar in Newly Revamped FDNY Test
»Military Wants ‘Minority Report’ For Suicide Prevention
»Muslim Violence is Our New Law
»NAACP File Complaint Over Entry Test
»Obama’s Tyrannical Executive Orders
Europe and the EU
»Ancient Burial Shroud Made of Nettles
»Bologna’s New Ice-Cream Museum Charts History of the Italian Treat
»Britain Warned it Must Take Action on Prisoner Votes Within Two Months
»French Authorities Arrest 6 for Abuse and Forcing Young Kids to Steal
»German Woman Killed 5 of Her Own Children Shortly After Birth, Police Say
»Greece: Website Leaks 30+ Names of Allegedly Corrupt MPs
»Hungary: Looking Into the Eyes of Bolshevik Murderers
»Italy: Two PDL Secretaries Under Investigation in Fiorito Probes
»Italy: Trial of Alleged Berlusconi Sex Suppliers Resumes in Milan
»Italy: Mixed Reactions to Possible Second Monti Term
»Italy’s Central Bank Governor Attacks Executive Pay
»Italy: Inquiry Opened Into Emilia-Romagna Region
»Roma Camp Dismantled in Italy’s Capital
»UK: Dogar: Nine Men Deny Child Sex Ring Charges
»UK: Hussain: Husband Guilty of Organising Brutal Exorcism of Wife
»UK: KitKat Firm Nestle Hides GPS Chips in Six Bars So They Can Track You Down and Hand Over a Briefcase Full of Cash
»UK: Mum: ‘A Stranger Stubbed a Cigarette Out on My Toddler’s Head’
»UK: Rochdale: Horrific ‘Sexual Predator’ Who Lured Manchester Teenagers to His Flat to Rape Jailed for Four Years
North Africa
»Egypt: Risk of Division Within Salafite Party
»Egyptian President Morsi: A Fugitive Addresses World Leaders
Middle East
»How Saudi Petrodollars Fuel Rise of Salafism
»Iran Condemns US Taking Group Off Terror List
»Understanding Bibi’s Urgency: Israel is Only Target of Iran’s Need for Islamic Apocalypse
»Worries That ‘Arab Spring” Leading to ‘Nuclear Winter’
South Asia
»25,000 Muslim Rioters Torch Buddhist Temples, Homes in Bangladesh
»Afghan Situation ‘Is Worse Than Government Says’
»Afghan ‘Insider’ Attack Claims at Least Two Lives
»Blasphemy Hurts Muslims as Holocaust Denial Hurts Jews, Says Imran
»Buddhist Temples Targeted in Bangladesh
»India: Bibles Are Burnt, Christians Attacked to Convert Them Forcibly to Hinduism
Far East
»Tashkent Begins Exporting Gas to China
Sub-Saharan Africa
»Grenade Kills Child: Injures Three in Kenya Church Attack
»Tanzania: Witchcraft Wars Disrupt Schooling Attendance
Latin America
»The “Comfortable Invisibility” of the Globalist Project
»UK: Shock on Immigration
Culture Wars
»California Becomes First State in Nation to Ban ‘Gay Cure’ Therapy for Children
»Gay Couples Should be Allowed to Marry in Church, Says Miliband as He Backs Government Proposals
»Inmate With Gender Identity Disorder Lauds Sex Change Ruling
»UK: ‘Cavalier’ Marr is Accused of Ignoring Jesus While Honouring Buddhism in His BBC History of the World
»‘Why Have Kids?’

Financial Crisis

Bristol, England, Adopts Alternative Currency

As riots rage in the capitals of Greece and Spain and nearly every economy in Europe teeters like a drunkard on the edge of financial ruin, one city in the United Kingdom is responding by creating its own local currency.

Bristol, England, a major seaport and the town where the saying “cash on the nail” (meaning immediate payment in cash) originated, is now printing its own pound. The idea according to advocates and city leaders is to encourage patronage toward local businesses and away from multinational conglomerates like Tesco and Starbucks.

The BBC reports that “more than 350 firms in the city have signed up, making it the UK’s largest alternative to sterling.”

Ciaran Mundy, one of the chief proponents of the Bristol pound, revealed to the BBC the reason for the minting. “If you lock the money into the area, rather than it going into the international finance system then you keep more money actually working in the city here,” Mundy said.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Dollar Falls Most Since 2011 as Central Banks Bump Up Stimulus

The Dollar Index fell by the most since the first quarter of 2011 after the European Central Bank pledged to protect the euro from unraveling and the Federal Reserve committed to reduce unemployment via open-ended debt buying, which may debase the U.S. currency.

Since July 26, when ECB President Mario Draghi said he would do “whatever it takes” to save the euro, the 17-nation currency rose versus 15 of its 16 most-traded counterparts tracked by Bloomberg. Amid the Fed’s expansion of monetary stimulus, the Dollar Index lost 2.1 percent in the third quarter. The Bank of Japan, which followed the Fed and the ECB in expanding its balance sheet by 10 trillion yen ($130 billion), is scheduled to announce its next policy decision on Oct. 5.

“The ECB announcement to buy one- to three-year bonds in the periphery” shaped currency markets last quarter, George Davis, chief technical analyst for fixed income and currency strategy in Toronto at Royal Bank of Canada, said in an interview. “It was the opening of a new chapter.”

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]


3-Star General Warns: Muslim Brotherhood Has Infiltrated Every Major US Federal Agency

Army Lieutenant General (Ret.) William “Jerry” Boykin confirmed that people with high security clearances connected to the Muslim Brotherhood hold important positions in every major federal agency including the Pentagon and the Department of Defense. The Muslim Brotherhood is a radical Islamist organization that has vowed the destruction of America from within. General Boykin has the credentials to back up his conclusions. He was one of the original members of the U.S. Army’s Delta Force which he ultimately led in combat operations. He also served a tour in the CIA during which time he participated in clandestine operations throughout the world. He served his last four years in the Army as Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

American Muslims Launch Petition to Limit Free Speech

Islamic leaders in Missouri and New Jersey are calling for lawmakers to limit free speech after an anti-Muslim film sparked outrage across the world.

The Islamic Society of Greater Kansas City has launched a petition calling on Congress to “establish a law against insulting one’s religion.”

“We understand the First Amendment (Amendment I) to the United States Constitution is part of the Bill of Rights and, as such, prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion, abridging the freedom of speech, infringing on the freedom of the press, etc., but when the allowance of ‘free’ speech incites violence it should be banned,” read a statement from the Islamic Society.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Blacks and Hispanics Soar in Newly Revamped FDNY Test

Blacks and Hispanics scored significantly better on the newly revamped FDNY exam, a shift that could lead to firefighter jobs for as many as 42% of the minority-group test-takers, city officials revealed Tuesday.

The would-be minority-group firefighters far outscored those who sat for the previous three exams—the results of which were deemed discriminatory and tossed out by a judge.

Bravest hopefuls who nail a grade of 97 or higher are considered likely to be hired by the FDNY over the next four years.

Nearly half—42.3%—of minority-group members who took the test cleared that hurdle, officials said.

That’s much higher than top-scoring minorities who took the 1999 exam (14%), the 2002 exam (16%) and the 2007 exam (33%).

The results of all three earlier tests were thrown out by Brooklyn Federal Judge Nicholas Garaufis in response to a 2007 lawsuit from the Justice Department and the Vulcan Society of black firefighters.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Military Wants ‘Minority Report’ For Suicide Prevention

Suicides among U.S. troops have outpaced combat deaths in Afghanistan throughout much of this year. The alarming trend has spurred the U.S. military to envision a “Minority Report” future where it has better predictions of when a person is likely to commit suicide — or perhaps even murder. The idea of predicting people’s likelihood of using violence comes from the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The agency plans to hold a suicide prevention workshop on Oct. 19 to figure out the best methods and technological tools for identifying troubled states of mind, according to a special notice issued on Sept. 26.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Muslim Violence is Our New Law

Over two centuries ago a group of British colonists huddling amid the forests and rivers of a new continent decided what they could and could not say by killing enough soldiers and mercenaries that the people who had been in charge of their speech decided they should try their luck somewhere where the regulating was easier.

This state of affairs in which the country that those colonists formed became and remains one of the very few places in the world, even among Western democracies, where freedom of speech is absolute, came about through stirring speeches, deeply felt debates, classical ideas and a passionate political culture—but most of all it came about because large numbers of people were willing to kill over it.

Currently large numbers of people are willing to kill over the idea that Islam is the supreme religion, that Mohammed is a deity whom all mankind should respect and that the infidels living in the suburban sprawl of a thoroughly explored continent should accept that or die. Our government calls those people a tiny minority of extremists. Our unofficial name for them is, “Muslims.”

Laws are decided by many things, but sweep away all the lawbooks, the pleas from tearful mothers, the timed publicity campaigns, the novel legal theories and the greedy bureaucrats expanding their turf, and under the table you will find a gun. The first and final law is still the law of force. The law begins with the power to impose its will on others. It ends with the enforcement of that power.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

NAACP File Complaint Over Entry Test

The largest U.S. civil rights group plans to file a complaint on Thursday over the admissions test at New York City’s specialized high schools, among the nation’s most elite public schools, citing effective discrimination against black and Latino students, the group said.

The complaint with the U.S. Department of Education focuses on eight schools in the city, particularly on Stuyvesant High and Bronx Science, which boast stellar alumni including several Nobel laureates, famed actors and musicians, and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.

While more than half the population of New York City is black or Latino, black students made up only 1.2 percent of the Stuyvesant student body last year, while Latino students represented 2.4 percent, city data showed.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, which is filing the complaint, said the highly competitive, 2-1/2-hour, multiple-choice Specialized High School Admissions Test was at fault for the disparity.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Obama’s Tyrannical Executive Orders

A September 24 a Wall Street Journal editorial warned that President Obama is moving to control the Internet by executive order. “Any day now, the White House will issue an executive order on cyber security, according to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano who said last week that the measure ‘is close to completion.’“


Jeffery T. Kuhmer, writing in The Washington Times in March, noted that “On March 15, the White House released an executive order, ‘National Defense Resources Preparedness.’ The document is stunning in its audacity and a flagrant violation of the Constitution.”

To understand how extensive this is, the Western Center for Journalism published a list of “Obama’s Worst Executive Orders” asserting that some 900 Obama executive orders had been initiated when in fact Obama has signed 139. However, added to active EOs from previous administrations, the Center is correct in its fears that he is “creating a martial law ‘Disney Land’ of control covering everything imaginable.”

  • Executive Order 10990 allows the Government to take over all modes of transportation and control of highways and seaports.
  • Executive Order 10995 allows the government to seize and control the communication media.
  • Executive Order 10997 allows the government to take over all electrical power, gas, petroleum, fuels, and minerals.
  • Executive Order 11000 allows the government to mobilize civilians into work brigades under government supervision. It noted that “the White House intends to go ahead with its order in the face of vociferous opposition on Capitol Hill.”

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Europe and the EU

Ancient Burial Shroud Made of Nettles

Ancient scraps of fabric found in a grave in Denmark are not made of cultivated flax as once believed, but instead are woven from imported wild nettles, suggesting the grave’s inhabitant may have traveled far for burial.

This discovery, announced Friday, Sept. 28 in the journal Scientific Reports, casts a new light on the textile trade in Bronze Age Europe, said study researcher Ulla Mannering, an archaeologist at the University of Copenhagen.

“Since the Stone Age, they had very well-developed agriculture and technology for producing linen textiles,” Mannering told LiveScience. “So it’s really unusual that a society which has established agriculture would also take in material from things that are not of the normal standardized agricultural production” — in other words, wild plants.

The soft and shiny fabric dates back to between 940 B.C. and 750 B.C., making it about 2,800 years old. It was discovered in Voldtofte, Denmark, at a rich Bronze Age burial ground called Lusehøj. The Bronze Age ran from about 3200 B.C. to 600 B.C. in Europe.

The fabric was wrapped around a bundle of cremated remains in a bronze urn. It was a luxurious piece of material, Mannering said.

“The fibers we get from the European nettle are very, very fine and soft and shiny, and we often say this is a sort of prehistoric silk textile,” Mannering said. (Silk, made from insect cocoons, is known for its shimmery texture.)

Previous analysis pegged the Danish fabric as woven from flax, a plant widely cultivated in the region. But along with nanophysicist Bodil Holst of the University of Bergen in Norway, Mannering and her colleagues used advanced methods to reanalyze the scraps of cloth. By studying the fiber orientation as well as the presence of certain crystals found in plants, the researchers were able to learn that the fabric is not flax at all, but nettle, a group of plants known for the needlelike stingers that line their stems and leaves.

Nor is the nettle local, Mannering said.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Bologna’s New Ice-Cream Museum Charts History of the Italian Treat

A new ice-cream museum just outside Bologna charts the rise of the Italian sweet and offers visitors the chance to taste historic flavours and even create their own gelato

A new museum outside Bologna charts the rise of gelato — Italian ice-cream — from its early incarnation as a chilled delicacy for Roman emperors to the sweet treat seen on every corner of Italy — and offers to make every visitor an artisan.

The €1.5m ice-cream museum opens its doors tomorrow at the headquarters of Carpigiani, a gelato machine maker founded in Bologna in 1946 which now sells its treats in more than 100 countries.

The free museum is located in a modern exhibition space seven miles outside of the city in the municipality of Anzola dell’Emilia.

“The Foundation has created the first museum in the world that describes the complete history, culture and knowledge of gelato,” says Valentina Righi, vice president of the Bruto and Poerio Carpigiani Foundation, financier of the museum. By sending tourists home with an appreciation of the history, Righi hopes “to spread the gelato culture everywhere in the world”.

A tour through the museum is an animated affair, with an English-speaking guide on hand to take visitors through the 11th-century Arab pomegranate sorbet recipe and on to the birth of gelato in Italy 500 years later. Here its roots are traced to the House of Medici; a family famed in Florence for its political grip and production of popes. Luciana Polliotti, the museum’s historical curator, says gelato as we know it today was invented by Cosimo Ruggieri, alchemist and astrologer to Caterina de’ Medici in the 16th century.

The simple pleasure was reserved for the well-to-do until the “democratisation” of gelato in the 20th century, the focus period of the museum.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Britain Warned it Must Take Action on Prisoner Votes Within Two Months

Britain has been warned it has less than two months to take “concrete” measures towards allowing prisoners the right to vote, in a key test for David Cameron.

The body that runs the European Court of Human Rights said it was “almost seven years” since the blanket ban was ruled illegal, and that time was running out for Parliament to take action.

It puts renewed pressure on the Prime Minister, who famously said the thought of letting inmates take part in elections made him “physically ill”.

Britain was first told by the ECHR that its blanket ban on prisoners voting breached their human rights in October 2005, in a case brought by a convicted axe-killer, John Hirst.

A Cabinet Office spokesman said: “The Government is considering how best to proceed following the judgment of the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights in Scoppola.”

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

French Authorities Arrest 6 for Abuse and Forcing Young Kids to Steal

French authorities have filed preliminary charges against six people accused of forcing children to steal and beg as part of a yearlong investigation involving police in France and Romania.

Prosecutors said Friday that another six are still in custody pending further questioning. All were detained in Roma, or Gypsy, camps in a Paris suburb earlier this week. Prosecutors said family members forced minors between 9 and 17 to carry out thefts and they were whipped or starved when they didn’t fulfill quotas.

The announcement comes amid political debate about how France is treating Roma. Police have expelled hundreds from illegal camps in France recently. Residents of a Marseille neighborhood kicked out around 50 Roma from a camp there and burned it down Thursday night, the Sipa news agency reported.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

German Woman Killed 5 of Her Own Children Shortly After Birth, Police Say

German officials have charged a woman with murdering five of her own children shortly after they were born to preserve her family’s standard of living.

The 28-year-old woman, whose name has not been released, gave birth to two children, ages 8 and 10, but then allegedly began hiding her subsequent pregnancies from everyone, including her husband.

She dumped the first two babies’ bodies in public, leaving one along a roadside nine miles outside her hometown of Husum, a coastal town near Germany’s border with Denmark. After police realized the babies had the same DNA, she delivered her next three babies in the woods — but in macabre fashion disposed of their bodies in boxes in the basement of her apartment building. Police arrested her on five charges of manslaughter.

The case’s prosecutor, Ulrike Stahlmann-Liebelt, said the woman made a “comprehensive confession” after submitting to a DNA test.

“She has said that the family lived at a certain level of prosperity, that it was clear her husband did not want any more children, and that one reason was to preserve this standard, and she feared that might be endangered if another child were there,” she said.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Greece: Website Leaks 30+ Names of Allegedly Corrupt MPs

Charges ranging from fraud and tax evasion to money laundering

(ANSAmed) — ATHENS, SEPTEMBER 28 — A political scandal is brewing in Greece after a list containing the names of more than 30 politicians currently under investigation for corruption by the Financial Crimes Squad (SDOE) was leaked by website on Friday.

The list includes 11 former ministers, 10 former deputy ministers and 12 former or current MPs who are under investigation on allegations ranging from tax evasion to gaining wealth from illegal activities. Among them is parliamentary speaker Evangelos Meimarakis, who is allegedly under investigation for money laundering through shady real estate deals, Realnews weekly reported. Those named are presumed innocent until proven guilty, website specified.

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is expected to make an official statement today, according to online daily. The leak comes ahead of next week’s parliamentary vote on a tough new austerity package mandated by the EU-ECB-IMF troika, on which Greece’s permanence within the eurozone might depend.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Hungary: Looking Into the Eyes of Bolshevik Murderers

Jobbik, several patriotic organizations, including the Hungarian Guard and Kurultaj organizers held a rally this afternoon at the houses of two war criminals that are still alive, Bela Biszku and György Mátsik. The two Boshevik monsters are heavily involved in the post-1956 reprisals including the murder of innocent civilians and even minors.

Biszku and Mátsik, the soul-mates of Gyurcsany, Bajnai, Kovacs and other Bolshevik traitors have no remorse and even today they don’t regret what they have done. They live well on higher than average retirement pension while their victims are struggling to earn their daily bread.

About 2000 people, including Jobbik members of parliament showed up at György Mátsik’s house with protest signs and flags.

In the mostly young crowd, also appeared many older people. They told that they came to the rally because their relatives were imprisoned and murdered by these monsters in the post-revolutionary reprisals.

Jobbik deputy György Szilagyi said there are people in this country who do not accept that former Communists govern the country. Hungarians are humiliated on a daily bases while minorities and Hungarian-haters enjoy privileges even in the judiciary said the Jobbik politician. Then, he added patriot groups should join forces because only together can the traitors be defeated.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Italy: Two PDL Secretaries Under Investigation in Fiorito Probes

Lazio governor gave secretaries access to party bank account

(ANSA) — Rome, September 28 — Two secretaries from ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi’s People of Freedom (PdL) party are being probed in a regional corruption scandal that erupted earlier this month.

Bruno Galassi and Pierluigi Boschi were both PdL secretaries for former regional chief Franco Fiorito, who was placed under investigation for suspected embezzlement of party funds after his offices were searched by police mid-September.

Boschi is also Fiorito’s cousin, investigators said.

Investigators say that Boschi and Galassi were authorized access to the party’s Unicredit bank account.

The men reportedly wrote and cashed two checks in their own names for 4,600 euros each.

Bank transfers worth over 10,000 euros to Fiorito’s godmother and girlfriend for ‘services rendered’ are also being investigated.

The possibility that the scandal engulfing Berlusconi’s centre-right party is placing it at risk of imploding has been denied by the party’s founder.

“No, we are not in disarray,” Berlusconi told journalists on Tuesday.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Italy: Trial of Alleged Berlusconi Sex Suppliers Resumes in Milan

‘Bunga bunga’ parties ‘a joke’ says defendant

(ANSA) — Milan, September 28 — A trial against three people for allegedly supplying ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi with prostitutes resumed on Friday in Milan.

Bankrupt ex-talent scout Lele Mora, Lombardy regional councillor and Berlusconi’s former dental hygienist Nicole Minetti and retired television anchor Emilio Fede must answer to charges of inducing and favouring prostitution, including underage prostitution, in connection with alleged sex parties hosted by Berlusconi at his villa at Arcore near Milan.

One of the alleged prostitutes at the center of the case is Karima ‘Ruby’ El Mahroug, a Moroccan-born belly dancer who was underage at the time. Ruby’s father Mohammed El Mahroug told the court that all his daughter wanted from life was money and “we didn’t have any”. In a separate trial, Berlusconi is suspected of paying for sex with Ruby after several of the parties and allegedly coercing police into releasing her after an unrelated theft claim to hush up the fact.

Prosecutors say Berlusconi had sex with 33 prostitutes at his villa over the course of several months.

Mora and Minetti were both present in court on Friday, Mora for the first time. Mora told journalists outside the courthouse that Berlusconi was innocent and that the so-called ‘bunga bunga’ parties were nothing more than a “joke”: “at Arcore we ate and had a good time”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Italy: Mixed Reactions to Possible Second Monti Term

Italy needs ‘solid, reliable government’ say employers

(ANSA) — Rome, September 28 — There were mixed reactions on Friday to the possibility of a second Mario Monti government after Italy’s unelected technocrat premier said he would serve again “under special circumstances”. “A second Monti term is a possibility,” said the president of the Italian industrial employers’ association, Giorgio Squinzi. “But above all Italy needs a solid, reliable government of credible people which has a political basis”. His opinion was shared by Pier Luigi Bersani, the leader of the centre-left Democratic Party.

“Monti is a resource for the country,” Bersani told daily newspaper La Repubblica. “But if he wants to continue without a political majority supporting him, I say to him that it’s not possible. This is the basic point, everything else comes later”.

Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne had no reservations though. “(A second Monti government) would be a step forward for the country. It would give credibility and eliminate much uncertainty,” he said.

Susanna Camusso, leader of Italy’s largest trade union confederation CGIL, expressed a opposite view, saying a second Monti term “would be a message of resignation, not a prospect for change”.

“The sensation is that of a country that is unable to create different political alternatives to overcome the crisis,” she said. Antonio Di Pietro, the outspoken leader of the small anti-graft IdV party that opposes Monti’s emergency government, had no hesitation in shooting down the hypothesis. “In a democracy the idea that someone should want to govern the country without asking for authorisation from its citizens only exists in dictatorships or in countries where citizens are considered second-rate,” he said. Monti took the helm of government last November when the financial crisis forced Silvio Berlusconi to resign as premier.

His term as premier is set to end when Italy holds elections next spring.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Italy’s Central Bank Governor Attacks Executive Pay

Visco wants more women on bank boards

(ANSA) — Rome, September 25 — The governor of Italy’s central bank called on banking leaders for reforms in the governance of their sector at a conference in Rome on Tuesday, citing executive pay as an issue that needs tackling.

“The Italian banking system has undoubtedly made progress in governance,” Bank of Italy Governor Ignazio Visco said, Bu he added that: “we expect additional steps forward to be made; there are still plenty of areas where more efforts are necessary”.

Visco seems to be keen to see Italy’s banks break up ‘old boys’ clubs’ in board rooms.

Visco said banking boards must increase the number of women board members, and seek to diversify the experience and backgrounds of their members in general.

The governor commented that the “capacity to prevent or at least cushion the blow” of the credit crisis “has been greater where the board knew how to keep control of risks, demonstrated skill and transparency.” Visco also bit into banks for their “criticism and resistance to the Bank of Italy’s corrective actions” to nip executive salaries and bonuses that are “not coherent” with the current economic crisis. He scolded banks for not heeding pressure reduce the amount of assets connected to public debt too, saying they ignored “costs connected with profligate and excessively structured government assets”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Italy: Inquiry Opened Into Emilia-Romagna Region

Latest anti-corruption move after wave of scandals

(ANSA) — Bologna, September 28 — Bologna prosecutors on Friday opened an inquiry into the Emilia-Romagna region’s handling of public funds. The prosecutors, who cite no specific wrongdoing, are already investigating Paolo Nanni, the Bologna provincial leader of the anti-corruption party Italy of Values (IdV), for allegedly mishandling party money. “If Paolo Nanni has any explanations, he’ll tell them to the prosecutors. Otherwise he’ll answer to the law,” said party leader and former anti-graft judge Antonio Di Pietro.

The inquiry was announced shortly after police searched party offices at the Piedmont regional administration on Friday in a preliminary inquiry into suspected over-spending by various caucuses.

They are the latest in a string of anti-corruption moves after a wave of scandals that hit Bari, Naples, Milan and Rome and forced Lazio governor Renata Polverini to quit earlier this week. Politicians have vowed to revise regional spending laws.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Roma Camp Dismantled in Italy’s Capital

Amnesty International criticize the eviction of 250 people

(ANSA) — Rome, September 28 — Rome municipal authorities dimantled the Tor de’Cenci Romani settlement on the outskirts of the city, evicted its inhabitants and bulldozed the camp’s housing on Friday morning.

Human Rights group Amnesty International said in an open statement to the Italian government that they condemned the “unlawful eviction” and were “gravely worried for the wellbeing of the 250 inhabitants of the destroyed camp left without any offer of adequate alternative accommodation, leaving many of them at risk of homelessness”.

An Amnesty report in April said that Roma, sometimes called Gypsies, continue to face “persecution and human rights abuses” in Italy.

The non-governmental organization criticized the discriminatory climate against Roma, specifically the 2008 Nomad Emergency decree that gave government representatives in the regions of Lombardy, Lazio and Campania the authority to waive human-rights legislation and allowed forced evictions of Roma communities.

The decree was declared unlawful by the country’s highest administrative court in 2011.

Discrimination against Roma is one of Italy’s biggest human-rights problems, Amnesty International said in the country’s section of its 2010 annual report.

The Italian government has consistently denied applying discriminatory practices regarding Roma.

Rome Mayor Gianni Alemanno said on Friday that the destruction of the camp had been pre-warned and that no abuses by authorities took place during the operation.

Italy’s Minister for Economic Cooperation and Integration Andrea Riccardi expressed his “astonishment at the manner and the suddenness of the eviction of the Roma camp of Tor de’ Cenci, the destruction of shacks and caravans that all took place in front of numerous children and minors”. The dismantling precedes a to-be-released report by the Council of Europe Human Rights Commissioner, which has asked Italy to immediately stop the practice of segregation and forced evictions that are in stark contrast to the National Strategy for Roma inclusion, approved by the government last spring.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

UK: Dogar: Nine Men Deny Child Sex Ring Charges

Oxford; Maidenhead, Berks — Nine Muslim men today (FRI) denied involvement in a child prostitution and sex trafficking ring based in Oxford. The suspects face a total of 51 charges relating to the rape and sexual assault of six vulnerable girls aged between 11 and 16. It is claimed the victims were befriended, groomed, sexually abused and required to perform sexual services for others for money. One girl was sexually assaulted with the handles of baseball bats, knives and cleavers and was subjected to an attempt to make her suffer a miscarriage.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

UK: Hussain: Husband Guilty of Organising Brutal Exorcism of Wife

Poplar, Bethnal Green, Shadwell, East London — A husband who organised the brutal exorcism of his wife to ‘beat the demon’ out of her is facing jail. Asma Hussain was tied to a bed and beaten with a walking stick after family members became convinced she was possessed. Wheelchair-bound husband Ahmed Hussain, 60, ‘instigated’ the exorcism by a local Muslim imam and encouraged him to hit his wife harder, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

UK: KitKat Firm Nestle Hides GPS Chips in Six Bars So They Can Track You Down and Hand Over a Briefcase Full of Cash

It has an air of Big Brother about it.

But this time you’ll be delighted they’re watching you.

Chocolate giant Nestle has launched a new competition in the UK called ‘We Will Find You’ where they have placed tracking devices into six lucky wrappers.

Should you open one of them, the GPS will activate and send a signal through to the company’s control room.

A team of ‘commandos’ will then be despatched in a helicopter to your exact location within 24 hours and deliver you a briefcase containing £10,000 in cash.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

UK: Mum: ‘A Stranger Stubbed a Cigarette Out on My Toddler’s Head’

A MUM has spoken of her horror after a complete stranger put a cigarette out on her three-year-old son’s head as they walked along the street.

She said her son, Javid, was left with a sore, burnt head for two days following the attack.

“It was horrifying,” she added. “I’m so angry and upset. It breaks my heart someone could do this to any child, never mind my son.”

Miss Lal also said the attacker didn’t run away or make attempts to escape.

“He just stood there, as if he was waiting for a reaction, as if he had done nothing wrong,” she added.

Miss Lal, a mum-of-three, said she was too scared to leave the house for two days after the incident and that she now wanted to move away from the area.

“He just stood there, as if he was waiting for a reaction, as if he had done nothing wrong,” she added.

Miss Lal, a mum-of-three, said she was too scared to leave the house for two days after the incident and that she now wanted to move away from the area.

“I’ve lived here all my life and nothing like this has ever happened to me and I’m sure is unlikely to happen again.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

UK: Rochdale: Horrific ‘Sexual Predator’ Who Lured Manchester Teenagers to His Flat to Rape Jailed for Four Years

A sexual predator who lured two teenage girls back to his Rochdale flat and raped one of them was jailed for four and half years today.

Babar Ali, also known as Zakir Mir, 43, of Rathbone Street, pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing at Minshull Street Crown Court to raping the 16-year-old girl.

The man plied the girls with alcohol after enticing them back to his home from a night out in Oldham town centre, he then forced one into the bedroom where he subjected her to a vicious sexual attack.

Detective Constable Michael Berger, of Rochdale CID, said: “This young victim was subjected to horrific and prolonged ordeal at the hands of Ali.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

North Africa

Egypt: Risk of Division Within Salafite Party

Ahead of parliamentary vote, relations with Brotherhood at stake

(ANSAmed) — Cairo, September 28 — The two fronts within Egypt’s main Salafite party ‘el Nour’ (the light) — the hardliners and the most progressive wing — have been at odds for days. In the end, the political office has decided to oust the president of the party, Emad Abdel Ghafour, the real revelation of the first democratic parliamentary elections in Egypt.

The official explanation is that Ghafour is now a member of President Mohamed Morsi’s team. But his allies say the measure was a coup against him within the party while analysts believe it is a measure to warn the ‘friends-enemies’ of the Muslim Brotherhood.

On the background of this fraction are new elections for Parliament which was dissolved in June by the Constitutional Court. The vote has not been scheduled yet and will depend on when the new Constitution is ready but the great manoeuvres within the Salafite party have already begun. At stake is the record 25% of votes recorded at last year’s elections which is coveted by the party’s most progressive wing as well as by the hardliners close to the Salafite movement.

Divergences between the two fronts reached a record high over anti-US demonstrations against the film mocking prophet Mohamed and the risk is that the division will take its toll on the results of the upcoming elections. Tensions heightened in the last few days after the outgoing president Ghafour ousted leading members of the party accusing them of contacts with an aid of Hosni Mubarak, his last premier and candidate for the presidency Ahmad Shafiq. Ghafour even annulled a vote within the party. The two moves led to his ousting and gave more power to the party’s hardliners who are seeking to control ‘el Nour’.

The spokesman for the progressive wing Mohmoud Abbas believes the solution is a clear separation between the party and the Salafite movement which is dominated by fundamentalist preachers who have felt threatened by the great success of the political party at the national vote.

According to a political analyst, Abdel Moneim Mahmoud, ‘nobody could have anticipated that the el Nour party exploded in such a way’. According to Mahmoud the ousting of the party president is a message to President Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood. ‘It is a message of warning to the hardliners to tell them that they could find themselves in the opposition given that the Salafites don’t even have a minister in the government’, said Mahmoud.

And the fact that a war between the two giants of Islamic politics in Egypt has already started is clear in the position against Prime Minister Hisham Qandil taken by a leading member of ‘el Nour’, Tarek el Sehry, the deputy president of Parliament’s higher house, the Shura, which has not been dissolved. ‘He is undecided, his performance is flat, he must be changed’, he said.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Egyptian President Morsi: A Fugitive Addresses World Leaders

Mr. Morsi is an enemy of the free speech known in America.

Historically, the Egyptian prison cell has been the incubator for monumental accomplishments, such as the formation of Al Qaeda and the current presidency of Egypt. It has provided the necessary network, doctrine and framework to spawn greater goals. Perfect plans have been hatched and prepared in Egypt’s prison block, allowing bad actors like Muhammad Morsi to plot their next move. Within a few days of Hosni Mubarak’s confinement of Morsi to the Two Sahrawi branch of the Wadi el Natruon Penitentiary during Egypt’s January 2011 uprising, Morsi broke out. He was a pawn in the execution of the Muslim Brotherhood’s long awaited scheme to take over Egypt.

Morsi was under arrest for suspicion of treason and not yet officially a sentenced criminal at the time of his escape. He might never have received a trial. Hard core Islamists like Morsi have always been thrown behind bars by Egypt’s dictators in order to prevent successful insurrections and the rise of full-blown Sharia.

So on January 29, shortly into the revolutionary crisis and on the fourth day of telecommunication darkness throughout Egypt (a complete shut down of phones and internet), the doors of prisons around the country (including the Two Sahrawi Penitentiary) flung open and prisoners fled to the streets. No sooner had Morsi emerged from his vault when a satellite phone landed in his hands for an interview already set up with Al Jazeera. It has been widely speculated throughout the Arabic press that Hamas terror cells provided this capability and linked him to the airwaves.


Intelligence coming from the Egyptian Secret Service indicated to Mubarak’s regime that Morsi was a spy cooperating with the CIA to overtake the uprising of January 25. Supposedly, Mubarak was informed that the Muslim Brotherhood received the sum of two billion dollars via Qatar.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Middle East

How Saudi Petrodollars Fuel Rise of Salafism

Since the 2011 Arab revolts, a loose network of underground zealots has evolved into a potent and highly vocal force. Behind the remarkable rise of Salafism lies the world’s leading producer of oil — and extremist Islam: Saudi Arabia.

When protesters incensed by an anti-Muslim video scaled the walls of the US embassy in Cairo on September 11, tearing down the Stars and Stripes, a black flag could be seen floating above the battered compound. From Sanaa, in Yemen, to Libya’s Benghazi, the same black banner, emblem of the Salafists, soon became a ubiquitous sight as anti-US protests spread like wildfire across the Arab world. The 2011 Arab uprisings have served the Salafists well. With the old dictators gone, a once subterranean network of hardliners has sprung into prominence — funded by a wealthy Gulf patron locked in a post-Arab Spring rivalry with a fellow Gulf monarchy.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Iran Condemns US Taking Group Off Terror List

Iran condemned on Saturday the Obama administration for taking an Iranian militant group formerly allied with Saddam Hussein off the U.S. terrorism list, saying it shows Washington’s “double standards.”

The Mujahedeen-e-Khalq (MEK), which began as a guerrilla movement fighting Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, helped overthrow the monarch in 1979 then quickly fell out with the Islamic Republic’s first leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. It fought in the 1980s alongside Saddam’s forces in the eight-year Iran-Iraq war but disarmed after the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.

The State Department delisted the group on Friday, meaning that any assets the MEK has in the United States are unblocked and Americans can do business with the organization. On Saturday, at their Paris headquarters, MEK members gathered to celebrate, tossing flower petals and displaying photos of members killed in the past 15 years.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Understanding Bibi’s Urgency: Israel is Only Target of Iran’s Need for Islamic Apocalypse

Why does Iran seem to only fixate upon war with Israel above any other goal? In fact, the need for an apocalyptic war against the Israeli state is the centerpiece of their religion and the key to unlocking paradise, in their estimation. The issue of the Shia’s messiah brings to light perhaps the most important aspect of the warmongering now occurring in the Middle East—that the bloodlust is religious in nature and not likely to go away on its own, ever. In fact, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad recently stated he’d like to see Israel gone. So how do we understand Shia Iran’s seeming eternal hatred for Israel?

Perhaps the best way to understand this is that the Iranian Shias see attacking Israel as a way to jump-start the final Muslim holy war and usher in the beautiful era of Islamic world preeminence—a time of peace and plenty. This final apocalypse is interpreted as Iran’s war against Israel, which must occur before paradise is established. This is why the Israelis fear a nuclear armed Iran.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Worries That ‘Arab Spring” Leading to ‘Nuclear Winter’

In an interview with US journalist Charles Rose broadcast on Thursday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov expressed dismay about the “Arab Spring” turning into a “Nuclear Winter”. At the same time, Lavrov stressed the necessity of showing a “serious attitude” toward the fact that more countries are mulling maintaining national security by obtaining nuclear weapons. “Threats and isolation only fuel similar moods in some countries,” Lavrov said. Commenting on the Iranian nuclear program, he said that Moscow is concerned over Tehran’s attempts to develop nuclear weapons, something that Lavrov said is yet to be verified.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

South Asia

25,000 Muslim Rioters Torch Buddhist Temples, Homes in Bangladesh

Tens of thousands of rioters left a trail of destruction in southeastern Bangladesh as they torched Buddhist temples and homes near the town of Ramu. The violence was sparked by a photo posted on Facebook that allegedly insulted Islam.

­A 25,000-strong mob set fire to at least five temples and dozens of homes throughout the town and surrounding villages after seeing the picture, which they claimed was posted by Uttam Barua, a local Buddhist man, AFP reported.

The group chanted “God is Great” while setting fire to the centuries-old temples.

“I have seen 11 wooden temples, two of them 300 years old, torched by the mob. They looted precious items and Buddha statues from the temples. Shops owned by Buddhists were also looted,” local journalist Sunil Barua said.

Security forces were deployed to contain the uprising: “At least 100 houses were damaged. We called in army and border guards to quell the violence,” district administrator Joinul Bari said.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Afghan Situation ‘Is Worse Than Government Says’

The German intelligence agency BND thinks the situation in Afghanistan is much more serious than the government has portrayed it, and is expecting an increase in attacks by Afghan soldiers on western troops.

In a report entitled “Afghanistan till 2014 — a prognosis,” seen by Der Spiegel magazine, the BND said it expects the situation to get worse and attempts to re-educate former Taliban fighters have shown “no effect” on the peace process.

Even after the official troop withdrawal set for the end of 2014, the BND estimates that some 35,000 foreign soldiers will be needed in the country to work with the Afghan army to stabilise the country and fight insurgents.

The US government announced on Sunday that it had lost 2,000 troops in the fight in Afghanistan — including two Americans, a soldier and a civilian, who died Sunday in a so-called blue against green attack, which is thought to have been carried out by an Afghan soldier working with American troops.

The US government has suspended joint military maneuvers as the attacks by Afghan soldiers on US military personnel continues.

The BND was especially critical of the Karzai government, saying corruption and nepotism run rampant in the Kabul regime. The report, which is classified as confidential, said the Karzai government is not directed at reform or the promised fight against corruption but on maintaining power.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Afghan ‘Insider’ Attack Claims at Least Two Lives

NATO says one of its soldiers and a civilian contractor have been killed in an attack believed to involve an Afghan soldier. The attack comes a day after the US said joint operations with Afghan forces were resuming.

NATO said Saturday’s attack, which occurred in eastern Afghanistan, also caused Afghan army casualties, but gave no details. The NATO forces statement did not provide the nationalities of those killed.

If the attacker is confirmed to be an Afghan ally, the NATO death toll from so-called “green-on-blue” attacks would rise to at least 52 this year in 36 separate attacks. That represents about 15 percent of all coalition casualties in the war in Afghanistan.

Earlier this month, NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) announced that it was scaling back joint operations with its Afghan partners following a dramatic rise in attacks by Afghan soldiers on their Western allies.

On Friday, the US announced, however, that the combined operations were resuming.

In a bid to curb such attacks, the coalition has increased internal security for its troops, and Afghanistan has instituted fresh vetting procedures for some security personnel. But such incidents continue to pose a problem for NATO, as it advises and trains Afghan forces in preparation for its scheduled pullout in 2014.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Blasphemy Hurts Muslims as Holocaust Denial Hurts Jews, Says Imran


In an appeal for global understanding of Muslim sentiments on blasphemy, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chief Imran Khan on Saturday called for comprehensive legislation to outlaw hate speech and promote respect for all faiths.

“Comprehensive legislation must be introduced by the global community to dismantle the trend and ensure respect for all religions across the globe,”

Imran said people in Europe can be jailed for just questioning the historic facts linked to the Holocaust because it hurts the sentiments of the Jews. “We are also being hurt in the name of freedom of speech,” he said.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Buddhist Temples Targeted in Bangladesh

A rare outbreak of anti-Buddhist rioting in Bangladesh has left at least four temples and dozens of homes gutted by fire. Muslims had taken to the streets to protest against an internet photo they said defamed Islam.

Senior police officers in the Cox’s Bazar coastal district said deployments of soldiers and border guards had helped quell the violence.

A young man accused of posting the photo was escorted to safety. At least 20 people were said to have been injured. Public gatherings had been temporarily banned, police said.

The rioters’ targets were the town of Ramu and its adjourning villages, some 350 kilometers (216 miles) from the capital, Dhaka.

“They became unruly and attacked Buddhist houses, torching and damaging their temples from midnight to Sunday morning,” said district administrator Joinul Bari.

A police officer, Rumia Khatun, said thousands of Muslims first attacked a Buddhist hamlet in Ramu, torching centuries-old temples, and later stormed Buddhist villages outside the town.

A local journalist, Sunil Barua, himself a Buddhist, said two of the temples set ablaze during the rioting were 300 years old.

“They looted precious items and Buddha statues from the temples. Shops owned by Buddhists were also looted,” Barua said.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

India: Bibles Are Burnt, Christians Attacked to Convert Them Forcibly to Hinduism

Two more incidents are recorded in Karnataka. Hindu extremists submit Pentecostal Christians to a ‘purification’ ceremony at a Hindu temple in order to force them to abjure their Christian faith. For the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), “these attacks are work of the Hindu party to win votes.”

Mumbai (AsiaNews) — Two new anti-Christian incidents were recorded, at a one day interval, in the state of Karnataka. In both cases, Pentecostal Christians were the victims, attacked in the privacy of their homes, when ultranationalist Hindus tried to force them to forswear their Christian faith.

For Sajan K George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), it is increasingly clear that the incidents “are orchestrated” because “in Karnataka and in other states governed by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), religion and politics go hand in hand and are used to gain as many votes as possible.” The ultranationalist Hindu party has been in power in the state since 2007.

The latest case was recorded yesterday in Gudadahalli Hearaghatta (north of Bangalore). Two Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS ) activists infiltrated a prayer meeting held at the Pentecostal Church led by Rev Muniraju. After the start of the service, an additional eight RSS members burst into the place.

In the church, they burnt or tore up all the Bibles and religious documents found. They also slapped and beat up the clergyman.

To intimidate the community, they dragged him and his five to a Hindu temple, about a kilometre away, where they forced the couple to take part in a pooja, a Hindu rite. Before they let them go, the attacked warned them against holding more prayer services.

Two days earlier, on Friday, the Bethel Prathanalaya Pentecostal Church, near Bhadravathi, Shimoga District, was attacked in the same fashion.

The community of 25 is led by Rev Kumar Hanumanthappa. On that day, the members had travelled to the neighbouring village Voddarahalli Thanda, guests of five local families.

About 20 RSS and Bajrang Dal activists stormed the prayer services, telling those present they would suffer “terrible consequences” if they continued to practice Christianity.

After beating some of those present and burning some of the Bibles, the Hindus forced the entire community to walk to the nearest Hindu temple to take part in their religion’s ‘purification’ ceremony.

Once they were able to go home, some of the Christians stopped at the Holehonnur police station to file a formal complaint. However, no one has yet to be arrested in connection with the case.

“Article 14 of the Indian constitution provides for equality before law for all people,” Sajan George said. “And yet in the case of attacks on Christians and Christian places of worship, the perpetrators go scot free, while the innocent victims are arrested”.

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

Far East

Tashkent Begins Exporting Gas to China

The agreement with Beijing is the first step out of the economic crisis and escape from hegemony of Moscow, the main buyer of Uzbek gas. 25 billion cubic meters of gas a year by 2015. In 2011, about 63 million cubic meters extracted, only 12 million exported. The former Soviet republic will contribute to the development of the gas pipeline in Central Asia sponsored by China.

Tashkent (AsiaNews / Agencies) — To emerge from the economic crisis and escape the control of Moscow, Uzbekistan has begun exporting natural gas to China. Signed in August, the agreement was only revealed on September 12 during a visit to Tashkent by Chinese Deputy Prime Minister Hui Liagyu. Relations between the two countries were born in June 2010 with the signing of a contract which provided for the intermediate export of 10 billion cubic meters of gas a year. Under the new agreement Uzbekistan will export from 2 to 5 billion cubic meters of fuel in 2012, increasing to 10 billion in 2013 and stabilizing at about 25 billion in 2016.

The former Soviet republic is the largest producer and consumer of natural gas in Central Asia, but its exports are very limited. Of 63 billion cubic meters of material extracted in 2011, the companies exported only 12 billion. To date, the main customer is Russia, followed by Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan.

Exports will be piped to Beijing through the Central Asia and China pipeline, which starts from Turkmenistan and reaches the Chinese border through Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. It has an annual capacity of 30 billion cubic meters, but the Chinese authorities plan to increase the amount up to 55 billion cubic meters by 2015.

The start of gas exports to China will allow Uzbekistan to diversify exports in the energy sector and to acquire new customers and counter the economic crisis that afflicts the country. The agreement with Beijing allows the ex-Soviet republic to break away from the orbit of Moscow, which controls its former satellite countries by imposing prices for the purchase of raw materials and the exclusive rights for export. In 2009 Russia contributed to the severe economic crisis of Turkmenistan reducing the purchase of gas.

The advantages for Beijing are countless. By accessing the Chinese pipeline, Tashkent will force other Asian republics to make the same choice, introducing a high level of competition in the sector, with huge savings for China. In recent years the Asian giant has become one of the main partners in the energy sector in Central Asia because of its appetite for energy and raw materials to maintain economic growth. To counter the hegemony of Moscow, Beijing has contributed to the construction of a huge pipeline that will connect all the countries of the region, allowing exports throughout Asia.

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

Sub-Saharan Africa

Grenade Kills Child: Injures Three in Kenya Church Attack

(AGI) — Nairobi, Sept. 30 — A child was killed and three others were seriously injured when a hand grenade was thrown into a church in Nairobi, the police chief of Kenya’s capital, Moses Nyakwama announced. The attacker targeted the children’s section of Sunday School at St. Polycarp’s church.

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

Tanzania: Witchcraft Wars Disrupt Schooling Attendance

Rorya. Students at Nyambogo Village in Rorya are living in fear and school attendance is at an all-time low following recent clashes over allegations of witchcraft that saw over 20 homes burned to the ground.

Of the 600 pupils enrolled at Nyambogo Primary School, only 16 are currently attending classes, according to headmistress Ms Hawa Elias. The rest have fled to the bushes to avoid the on-going police crackdown on rioters, she said.

Last week a battalion of unidentified young men descended on Nyambogo and torched more than 20 houses whose owners, they said, were involved in witchcraft. 11 local families were affected, left in dire straits to fend for themselves.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Latin America

The “Comfortable Invisibility” of the Globalist Project

Olavo de Carvalho, left, is arguably the most knowledgeable and original Brazilian philosopher of the past 25 years His books, seminars and newspaper articles (over 30.000 pages) have spurred a revolution in Brazilian intellectual circles and earned him the bitter hatred and hostility of the country´s hegemonic socialist nomenklatura, especially after he blew the whistle on “Foro de São Paulo”, a Latin American coalition of radical left-wing groups founded by Lula and Castro.

He writes:

Abortion, gay marriage, racial quotas, civilian disarmament, draconian ecological regulations, drug liberalization, state control of all religious activity and the lowering of the age of sexual consent to 12 years or younger.

These are, among others, the ideals that make the hearts of students, teachers, politicians, reporters, enlightened entrepreneurs and NGO activists beat faster — the very people who have monopolized public debate in Brazil.

None of these proposals originated with the Brazilian people, or with any other people, for that matter. None of them are approved by the population.

But that doesn’t matter. The agenda is being imposed top-down and will continue to be so in Brazil and around the world by way of informal political agreements, administrative measures designed to circumvent legislative debate, heavy propaganda, boycotts, explicit repression of adverse opinion and, last but not least, through the ample use of bribery, much of which in the form of “research funding” for teachers and students who can be trusted to draw the politically correct conclusions desired by the elite.

[Return to headlines]


UK: Shock on Immigration

Fresh-thinking Jon Cruddas, who is in charge of the party’s policy review, conceded Labour had “got it wrong” while in power when it allowed huge numbers to enter Britain simply to fill gaps in the workforce.

The Dagenham MP said no thought had been given to the effect on communities and local housing, health services and schools.

He hinted curbs might include an annual census instead of the current 10-year head count. A partial amnesty for long-standing illegal immigrants was also in his thinking, something London mayor Boris Johnson wants but Downing Street has ruled out.

The suggestion came as Labour leader Mr Miliband underlined the urgent need for large infrastructure and housing programmes as he arrived in Manchester with his wife Justine and sons Daniel, three, and Samuel, two, for Labour’s conference.

He said Britain was possibly facing a decade without any rise in living standards but urged people to draw inspiration from the Second World War struggles to rebuild the nation.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Culture Wars

California Becomes First State in Nation to Ban ‘Gay Cure’ Therapy for Children

California has become the first state in the nation to ban therapy that tries to turn gay teens straight.

Gov. Jerry Brown announced Sunday that he has signed Senate Bill 1172, which prohibits children under age 18 from undergoing “sexual orientation change efforts.” The law, which goes into effect Jan. 1, prohibits state-licensed therapists from engaging in these practices with minors.

“Governor Brown today reaffirmed what medical and mental health organizations have made clear: Efforts to change minors’ sexual orientation are not therapy, they are the relics of prejudice and abuse that have inflicted untold harm on young lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Californians,” Clarissa Filgioun, board president of Equality California, said in a press release.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Gay Couples Should be Allowed to Marry in Church, Says Miliband as He Backs Government Proposals

The Labour leader backed Government proposals to change the law to allow gays to be married in a register office or other civil ceremony.

But he insisted the reforms should go further by enabling churches and faith groups to conduct ceremonies if they wish to.

Mr Miliband is expected to impose a three-line whip on his MPs — the strongest possible instruction on how to vote — when the Commons decides whether to back gay civil marriages following a consultation by the Home Office.

David Cameron will offer Tories a free vote, as he regards the issue as one of conscience.

The Government is committed to introducing legislation before the next election in 2015 and polls suggest a significant majority of MPs will back a change in the law.

At the moment, it is illegal for gay couples to be married in church. The Home Office intends to keep this ban.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Inmate With Gender Identity Disorder Lauds Sex Change Ruling

Robert Kosilek a convicted murderer in Massachusetts who won the right to get a state-funded sex change is also eligible to have legal fees, expected to top US$500,000 (S$612,000), paid as well, a federal judge ruled. United States District Judge Mark Wolf earlier this month ordered the state Department of Correction to provide sex-reassignment surgery to Kosilek. Judge Wolf found that prison officials had violated Kosilek’s Eighth Amendment right to protection against cruel and unusual punishment, and that the surgery is the “only adequate treatment” for Kosilek’s gender-identity disorder. Judge Wolf has now found that Kosilek is also entitled to legal fees.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

UK: ‘Cavalier’ Marr is Accused of Ignoring Jesus While Honouring Buddhism in His BBC History of the World

Andrew Marr has been accused of a ‘cavalier and unsympathetic’ attitude towards Christianity after failing to include Jesus in a landmark BBC television history of the world.

Christians, including Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, say the BBC is guilty of ‘a glaring oversight’ for excluding Christ from the series.

Lord Carey said: ‘Any historical enquiry worth its salt takes seriously the life and ministry of Jesus when considering the impact of the Christian faith on world history.

‘This glaring oversight confirms a widely-held suspicion that the BBC tends to be cavalier and unsympathetic in its treatment of Christianity.’

In coming weeks Mr Marr will visit more than 60 historic locations but none has any association with Jesus’s life and death. The omission of such a pivotal figure from the series, which is a co-production with the Open University, is in stark contrast to the treatment of other faith leaders.

The rest of the series charts history to the present day, focusing on figures from the conqueror of Constantinople, Ottoman leader Mehmed II, to Adolf Hitler.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

‘Why Have Kids?’

Feminist author claims ‘guilt and self-flagellation’ of motherhood is making women wish they never had children

A feminist author claims that ‘guilt’ and ‘self-flagellation’ are ‘sucking the joy out of motherhood,’ leaving many women wishing they’d never had kids.

In her provocative new book, ‘Why have Kids?’ Jessica Valenti says women are being made miserable because the idea of parenting, and of motherhood in particular, is far removed from the often thankless and oppressive reality.

‘In killing ourselves to achieve this impossible standard, motherhood becomes less of a relationship and more of a job,’ she writes, adding that having children should not be the default setting for women.

Valenti, a mother-of-one, describes the thousands of anonymous confessions on discussion boards, website and forums where women open up about how they love their children, but hate being a mother.

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]