Monday, January 13, 2003

News Feed 20130101

Financial Crisis
»EU’s Directed History Grinds on
»Greek Shops to Get Online Link With Finance Ministry
»House Passes Fiscal Deal, Averting Tax Increases and Spending Cuts
»How to Restore the West
»The Truth About the Fiscal Cliff in Simple Terms
»What We Can Expect: Ten Top Elite Memes for 2013
»CCHR Says Federal Investigation Into Psychiatric Drugs & Violence Long Overdue
»Gun Owners Mad as Hell and Will Not Take It!
»Obama Seizing Control of the US Military — Potential Cataclysm Ahead
»On Modern Musketry
»The 2013 Anxiety Meter
»Video: Going for the Guns: Possible Martial Law in Early 2013?
Europe and the EU
»Blood of Guillotined French King ‘Authentic’
»French Muslims Celebrate New Year by Torching 1,193 Cars
»Italy: Berlusconi Fingers ‘Criminal Use of Spread’ For Downfall
»Italy: Berlusconi Calls Judiciary ‘A Cancer’
»Monumental Deceit: How Politicians Lied About the True Purpose of the European Behemoth
»Sicily Doesn’t Need 21 Press Officers, Says Crocetta
»UK: Last Words of Teenager Knifed to Death Protecting Younger Brother From Phone Muggers
»UK: Police Hunt for Dangerous Serial Rapist Who Walked Out of Open Prison
North Africa
»Egyptian Satirist Accused of Undermining Mohammed Morsi
»Israel Will Cease to Exist Within a Decade, Says Muslim Brotherhood Official
Israel and the Palestinians
»The Bennett Threat — And Why the Pols Are Scared
Middle East
»2013: The Start of Israel’s Energy Independence
»Education: Egypt and Turkey Carry Out Cooperation Protocol
»Saudi Arabia: Website Editor Could Face Death Penalty
»Sesquicentennial Comparisons: Black Slavery in America and Ottoman Turkey
»They Cut His Ears Off and Tied Him Upside Down — Harrowing True Story of Being Kidnapped by Somali Pirates
»Video: The Syrian Diary: Unimaginable Crimes Committed by Terrorists
South Asia
»Gunmen Kill Seven Pakistani Aid Workers
»Indian Gang Rape Victim Was Thrown Under Bus After Attack But Her Fiance Saved Her From Being Crushed Under Its Wheels
»Islamic Militants Massacre Five Women Teachers Travelling to Primary School in Protest at Female Education in Pakistan
Far East
»Fear the Russia/China Alliance
»North Korean Leader Calls for End to “Confrontation” With South
Sub-Saharan Africa
»South Africa Vanishes With Its Gold?
Culture Wars
»Homophobia: What Does it Really Mean?
»NGOs Plot Wave of Criminal Referrals to Legitimize International Criminal Court
»Now UN Wants to Control Tourist Behavior … For the ‘Greater Good, ‘ of Course
»Succour for the Vain and Vacuous: Why I Loathe Twitter

Financial Crisis

EU’s Directed History Grinds on

EU summit to consider ‘reform contracts’ for all euro states … Draft ideas ahead of next week’s EU leaders summit foresee reform contracts for all euro states, political agreement on a full banking union and, post-2014, a budget for the eurozone. The still-to-be finalised conclusions, seen by EUobserver, envisage progress towards profound economic and monetary union — the lack of which is considered to have led to the eurozone’s current crisis — in three phases. By March next year, EU leaders are supposed to agree the “operational framework” for a single European banking supervisor, the first of three planks necessary for full banking union. The proposed second phase (2013-2014) is where the EU leaders are likely to start haggling over language. It suggests that legislative proposals for a bank resolution directive and an EU-wide deposit guarantee scheme are made. If this passes there will “in essence be political agreement on a full banking union,” said one contact. — EU Observer

Dominant Social Theme: We need bigness. We crave it.

Free-Market Analysis: As we and others have documented, EU officials decades ago anticipated an economic crisis that would yield a political union. That plan obviously remains unchanged.

We can see from the above article excerpt that what was plotted long ago is blossoming today. While the dominant social theme is surely one having to do with bigger being better, the subdominant social theme predictably involves the strengthening of the EU’s financial sphere.

But was the lack of a “monetary union” the real reason for the EU’s current troubles? Of course not. It is simply more directed history. Create a crisis. Make numerous attempts to “solve it.” And finally, generate the solution you intended to inflict from the beginning. Here’s more from the article:

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Greek Shops to Get Online Link With Finance Ministry

(ANSAmed) — ATHENS, DECEMBER 31 — Greece’ company cash registers will be connected to the Taxisnet electronic system of the Finance Ministry in the first three months of 2013, daily Kathimerini reports quoting ministry officials as saying. The online link between shops and enterprises to the ministry’s database means that payment and receipt of value-added tax will be conducted in real time, putting an end to the VAT statements that companies currently have to submit at regular intervals.

The new system will allow VAT to be credited directly to the state’s account and once the process begins, authorities hope it will bring an end to the issuance of bogus invoices and will curb VAT payment evasion. They say that this technology constitutes a much more effective tool for combatting tax evasion than anything that has been used to date, as it allows the ministry to be informed in real time of a transaction at the same time as a receipt is issued by an enterprise.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

House Passes Fiscal Deal, Averting Tax Increases and Spending Cuts

Ending a climactic fiscal showdown in the final hours of the 112th Congress, the House late Tuesday passed and sent to President Obama legislation to avert tax increases on most Americans and prevent large cuts in spending for the Pentagon and other government programs.

The measure, brought to the House floor less than 24 hours after its passage in the Senate, passed 257 to 167, with 85 Republicans joining 172 Democrats in voting to allow incomes taxes to rise for the first time in two decades. The bill is expected to be signed quickly by Mr. Obama.

[Return to headlines]

How to Restore the West

By any political, cultural or economic measure the nations of the West are in total decline. The historic virtues of hard work, free-market thinking and a common cultural integrity as well as religious and historical principles are gone. They have been subverted and replaced by an emphasis on rampant materialism and a consumer driven society that exceeds 70 percent of GNP in addition to private and public debt. Furthermore, a kind of parasitism has laid claim to Western culture by which sports stars, politicians, media darlings and financial scam artists get recognition and exorbitant incomes while real workers find their incomes falling and promised benefits curtailed.

Western society has lost its way. The main reason is the former political leadership of individual European nations and America, as imperfect as they were, have been co-opted and taken over by a corrupt power elite that uses its control over mob rule democracy and massive financial contributions to buy controlling influence over the “representative” governments of most Western nations.

This control has meant the political leadership and central bankers do not represent the citizens or the best interests of the nation at large. Instead, politics works to advance the financial and global governance interests of a small, secretive power elite. This takeover has bankrupted most nation-states and now threatens all existing fiat paper currencies as well as public and private wealth and retirement savings.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

The Truth About the Fiscal Cliff in Simple Terms

Many either don’t know what the “fiscal cliff” is, or believe this problem is something that it’s not.

Although America ‘s economic crisis is not rocket science, the media and politicians have done a good job of keeping the truth hidden so that our focus isn’t on the real problem. After all, if we, the people, understood the real problem, we would demand that they fix it and we are smart enough to know the real fix that’s needed.

To prevent this from happening, politicians and media conjured up this catchy phrase called “the fiscal cliff.” Then they established a narrative that gave us a false target to blame — the so-called “rich.”

In other words, keeping the people’s attention on class warfare directs our anger and rhetoric onto the false target they’ve fed us and off of ‘what’ and ‘who’ created the problem in the first place. This distracts us from formulating and voicing the real solution to the true problem.

So, what is the real problem that created this crisis?

In a nut shell, our elected politicians have continued to spend trillions more in the past four years than taxpayers have given them. Thus, they have brought America ‘s economy to the point of near collapse. It’s that simple.

Three of the broader consequences of what they’ve done are:

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

What We Can Expect: Ten Top Elite Memes for 2013

What a year it’s been, marked mainly by increasing worldwide chaos, senseless wars and economic upheaval, all leading inevitably to increased “chaos” out of which shiny, new global government can be born — along with new, more global currencies.

The top elites — the ones we think control central banking and money creation — created an EU sovereign crisis, from what we can tell, and wasted the world’s time this past year in intense and fruitless negotiations to “resolve it.” There can be no resolution, of course, and that’s just the point. The EU mess is to continue until every aspect of that pitiful union is further centralized and bureaucratized.

In the US, phony economic crises struck with increased urgency, one after the other, finally leading to the largest of all, the so-called Fiscal Cliff. The Cliff will be resolved, of course, leading to a round of self-congratulation covered by the bought-and-paid-for mainstream press.

And then, promptly, there will be another crisis. The United States is being brought down with one phony crisis after another. The idea apparently is to place the US in a position where it can merge economically with countries like Mexico and Brazil. In order for this to happen, the US economy has to be reduced, and that is well underway.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]


CCHR Says Federal Investigation Into Psychiatric Drugs & Violence Long Overdue

CCHR’s website documents that at least fourteen recent school shootings were committed by those taking or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs, resulting in 109 wounded and 58 killed. It also lists 22 international drug regulatory warnings that have been issued on psychiatric drugs causing side effects of mania, psychosis, aggression, hostility, violence and even homicidal ideation, yet there has never been a federal investigation into psychiatric drugs and acts of senseless violence.

The Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR), a mental health watchdog, is calling for a federal investigation into the link between psychiatric drug use, school shootings and other acts of senseless violence, calling the investigation long overdue, and citing the supporting evidence.

On Dec. 17th, the Los Angeles Times article, “Adam Lanza’s family had kept a watchful eye on him,” cited sources who say Lanza had been ‘medicated’ as early as age 10. WFSB Eyewitness News, a Connecticut CBS affiliate, reported on Dec. 19th in the article, “Adam Lanza underwent psych evaluations in years past,” that Adam Lanza “had some disorders” and Eyewitness News learned that Lanza “did undergo some sort of psychiatric evaluation sometime within the past few years.”

The questions that need to be answered are what “medications” was Adam Lanza prescribed, when was he prescribed them, and for how long.

The importance of answering these questions, as well as the need to launch a federal investigation into psychiatric drugs prompting acts of violence, are based on the following:


CCHR’s site also documents that 22 international drug regulatory warnings have been issued on psychiatric drugs citing effects of mania, hostility, violence and even homicidal ideation. Dozens of high profile shootings/killings have been committed by teenagers under the influence of psychiatric drugs, and there has yet to be a federal investigation on the link between psychiatric drugs and acts of senseless violence.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Gun Owners Mad as Hell and Will Not Take It!

This is about far more than guns and who has them. This is about slavery to the state. Pure and simple.

There is a purge of Congress in the offing. It will be historic in its magnitude.

Allow me to be as clear as I possibly can about this because the disconnect between the people of America and their government has become so complete, the distance between the citizen and the government has become so broad, that Washington is hearing only a faint whisper (If they hear anything at all!) coming from those of us outside the beltway.

So let me say this clearly, loudly, and in a declarative manner: Attention Senators and US Representatives: If you vote for the new Assault Weapons Ban your political career in the US Congress is OVER. That is O V E R! Complete, finished, ended, kaput!

For the past few days I have been going over and over Senator Diane Feinstein’s proposal for a new Assault Weapons Ban and it reads like some sort of “edict” handed down from the politburo in old Soviet Socialist Russia. (The politburo is the chief executive and political committee of the Communist Party.)

It IS as bad as I had suspected— but it is much, much, worse!


All this is bad enough, but consider this: If the Congress refuses to pass Feinstein’s bill into law, isn’t it reasonable to expect that Obama will issue the necessary Executive Orders to do much the same thing by way of rules and regulations, which have the force of law, and those rules and regs will be executed by the alphabet agencies under his control such as BATFE and the DHS, and even the agency, or agencies, charged with the supervision of Obamacare.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Obama Seizing Control of the US Military — Potential Cataclysm Ahead

Barack Obama has worked with pro-Moscow Marxists including Frank Marshall Davis and Alice Palmer, and pro-Cuban radicals like Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, his entire life.

Their number one priority has always been the destruction of the US military, the only significant block remaining, to global revolution.

Now that the Davis/Palmer/Ayers/Dohrn protege has the reins of power, President Obama is working hard to destroy US military superiority, consciously or unconsciously, to the advantage of the Russia/China/Cuba/North Korea/Iranian/Islamic alliance.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

On Modern Musketry

Accentuated by the recent heinous events at Sandy Hook, I have lately heard an increase in the never-really-absent mantra of “ban them, ban them, ban them all,” where the “them” referred to is a poorly defined item with a politically made up name which capitalizes on a semantic nuance of the poor (or at least marginal) translation of a German word, co-opted into a bogeyman term used to frighten some, shame others, and generally interdict rationality and reason so that emotion reigns, while logic lies wounded at its feet.

The Sandy Hook incident was a gut punch for many, some of us more than others, and for reasons that varied across the spectrum of emotion. It hit me at three distinct nerve centers: a) it happened near my family home, less than thirty miles from where I was born, b) it involved the senseless and wholly preventable slaughter of young children, and c) it served as a spark to the tinder of the political arsonists who have waited impatiently for just the right “tragedy” to provide the plausible “outrage” to put the torch to the Second Amendment.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

The 2013 Anxiety Meter

Obama is the center of his own Marxist universe.

All through 2012 I kept telling myself that, if I could just wait it out until the elections, a majority of Americans would surely set things right by electing Mitt Romney, but we have since learned that he was a reluctant candidate who, if we are to believe his son—and I think we can—really didn’t want to get in the race, but thought the others in the primaries had little chance of winning.

I won’t blame Romney for the loss. Running against an incumbent President has rarely yielded victory. He had all the right qualifications, but he always struck me as just “too nice” and, as we know, Republicans were reluctant to tear into Obama’s appalling record on the economy and other issues. Like Romney, they are “too nice” despite being up against political thugs.

I think 2013 is going to be a very unlucky year for the United States and it has a lot to do with the fact that Barack Hussein Obama is now free to finish off his destruction of America because he does not have to run again for office.


Here again, 2013 will not bode well if Obama’s choice for the next Secretary of State, John Kerry, is confirmed as is expected. America first became aware of Kerry when, as a young veteran of Vietnam, he accused his fellow soldiers of offenses that were later proven to have no basis in fact. He threw away his combat medals. In the 1980s, Kerry campaigned for a nuclear freeze and the Obama administration has been reducing our nuclear arms arsenal at the worst possible time. Iran is just months away from having its own nuclear arms and, after that, no one can predict what they will do with them, but you can be sure they will use them. Obama’s promises to ensure they do not are worthless.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Video: Going for the Guns: Possible Martial Law in Early 2013?

A 31-years of service NC police lieutenant calls into a pastor’s radio show to tell what he has heard from the inside- and he says they are training for civil unrest.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Europe and the EU

Blood of Guillotined French King ‘Authentic’

Scientists have established the authenticity of a piece of cloth dipped in the blood of France’s last king Louis XVI (pictured) after his execution during the French Revolution.

Scientists have authenticated that a rag believed to have been dipped in the blood of France’s monarch Louis XVI is the genuine article.

The discovery also proves the authenticity of a mummified head which was believed to be that of 16th century French king Henri IV — which was used to make the DNA comparison.

Louis XVI was executed by guillotine on January 21, 1793, the first victim of the “Reign of Terror” that followed France’s infamous revolutionary uprising.

As was the habit at the executions of French aristocrats, spectators dipped their handkerchiefs in the gore of the decapitated victim as a morbid keepsake.

One such rag found its way into a calabash — a form of squash that is dried and used as a bottle — on which was inscribed: “On January 21, Maximilien Bourdaloue dipped his handkerchief in the blood of Louis XVI after his decapitation.”

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

French Muslims Celebrate New Year by Torching 1,193 Cars

By Daniel Greenfield

The good news is that the French insurance industry is getting a lot of repeat business. The bad news is that 1,193 cars were torched, three police officers and four gendarmes were injured. And 339 arrests were made. But it’s just another way that Islamic traditions are becoming part of France in a great multicultural mix of petrol, fire and ruin.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Italy: Berlusconi Fingers ‘Criminal Use of Spread’ For Downfall

Reiterates need to investigate Napolitano’s role

(ANSA) — Rome, December 31 — Italian ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi declared on Monday that “a criminal use of the spread” was instrumental to the demise of his leadership in November 2011. Speaking on Radio Capital, Berlusconi also reiterated his announcement in recent days that, if he is elected, a parliamentary commission will investigate Italian President Giorgio Napolitano’s role in the ex-premier’s ouster and the formation of the Mario Monti-led technical government that followed.

“Certainly there was a criminal use of the spread. On the role of Napolitano, I will not make any judgements. The commission will clarify the roles each person played,” Berlusconi said.

The spread — the difference between interest rates on Italian bonds and the German benchmark — is an important gauge of the market’s confidence in Italy’s ability to pay down its enormous debt.

Berlusconi was forced to step down in November 2011 as interest rates — and the spread — threatened to send Italy into a catastrophic sovereign-debt crisis.

Berlusconi says he believes conspiracy and market manipulation were responsible for his downfall, rather than the market’s diffidence in his political leadership.

In the Monday radio interview, Berlusconi also dismissed the importance of opinions against him among political leaders of other European countries.

“The support of certain government leaders for Monti? It is clear that the other countries defend their interests,” Berlusconi added. “Premier Berlusconi did not please them. I was not mocked but feared in Europe.”

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Italy: Berlusconi Calls Judiciary ‘A Cancer’

(AGI) — Rome, Dec 31 — Silvio Berlusconi, speaking to Teleradiostereodue said, “That of the judiciary is a cancer which afflicts our democracy, because the use of politics in the justice system is something which cannot be allowed in a true democracy.” The former prime minister also attacked Antonio Ingroia saying, “If you think about these magistrates like Ingroia, who take advantage of the popularity they have had as judges, and then become candidates and enter into politics — these things are unacceptable.”

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

Monumental Deceit: How Politicians Lied About the True Purpose of the European Behemoth

At first it should be presented as just a trading arrangement, the ‘Common Market’ set up in 1957 by the Treaty of Rome. But the essence of that treaty was to create the core institutions of what Monnet always intended should one day be the ‘Government of Europe’.

The idea was to work for ‘ever closer union’.

Treaty by treaty, it would take over more powers from national governments, based on the sacred principle that once power to make laws was handed over to Brussels it could never be given back.

Ever more countries would be brought into the net, until the project reached its ultimate goal as a super-government, with its own president and parliament, its own currency and armed forces, its own flag and anthem — all the attributes of a fully-fledged nation state.

Thus, stealthily assembled over decades, would this new ‘country called Europe’ finally take its place on the world stage. What we found most shocking in researching this story was that, when Britain’s leaders first considered joining the project, they were made fully aware of this hidden agenda.

As we see from Cabinet papers and other documents of the early Sixties, Prime Minister Harold Macmillan and his ‘Europe Minister’ Edward Heath were put completely in the picture about the secret ‘grand plan’. But in June 1961 the Cabinet formally agreed that it must not be revealed to the British people.

In Macmillan’s words, to admit ‘the political objectives’ of the Rome Treaty would raise ‘problems of public relations’ so ‘considerable’ that they should be kept under wraps. It was vital to emphasise only the economic advantages of British entry.

Thus did Macmillan and Heath become drawn into complicity with that same web of deceit which was driving the ‘project’ itself

           — Hat tip: Kitman[Return to headlines]

Sicily Doesn’t Need 21 Press Officers, Says Crocetta

(AGI) Messina — President of Sicily Region Rosario Crocetta said the Region doesn’t need 21 journalists with the job title of editor in chief.

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

UK: Last Words of Teenager Knifed to Death Protecting Younger Brother From Phone Muggers

[WARNING: Disturbing content.]

A teenager was stabbed to death protecting his younger brother from a gang that had stolen a phone.

Dogan Ismail, 17, died after being knifed in the chest on Sunday afternoon at a block of flats in Walworth, south-east London.

The sixth-form student and his younger brother Orhan, 15, had gone to retrieve a stolen BlackBerry when they were confronted by up to four youths and a row broke out.

The mobile phone had previously been stolen by a trio of pupils — that Orhan recognised from his school — as he walked home from playing football.

Two days later he received a message saying: ‘If you come here we will give it back to you,’ according to The Sun.

The pair headed to Latimer House to retrieve the phone, but instead one of the boys pulled out a knife and stabbed Dogan in the chest at the top of a stairwell.

The teenager bled to death as his younger brother tried desperately to save his life.

Orhan later told his family: ‘He made to give back the phone, but instead brought a knife from behind his back and stabbed Dogan in the chest.

‘His last words were, ‘Oh my God, you have stabbed me!’ The guy just calmly walked away.’

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

UK: Police Hunt for Dangerous Serial Rapist Who Walked Out of Open Prison

[WARNING: Disturbing content.]

A serial rapist is being hunted by police after walking out of an open prison.

Sean Cawthray, 41, was jailed indefinitely in 2002 after attempting to kidnap a 14-year-old girl by dragging her away from a bus stop.

He was last seen at Leyhill Open Prison in south Gloucestershire at 5.30pm on Sunday and is believed to have left the unit before 8.30pm.

Police are warning the public not to approach Cawthray and to dial 999 immediately if they see him.


Leyhill Open Prison is a 508-man Category D prison which holds men re-classified to a lower risk who are often being prepared for release back into society.

It has no perimeter fence and was once dubbed ‘The Savoy of Slammers’ for its cushy regime.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

North Africa

Egyptian Satirist Accused of Undermining Mohammed Morsi

An Egyptian satirist who made fun of President Mohammed Morsi on television has been accused of undermining his standing and will be investigated by prosecutors, according to a judicial source.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Israel Will Cease to Exist Within a Decade, Says Muslim Brotherhood Official

A senior Muslim Brotherhood official has said that Israel will cease to exist within a decade, the latest in a series of inflammatory comments by figures close to Egypt’s Mohammed Morsi.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Israel and the Palestinians

The Bennett Threat — And Why the Pols Are Scared

By Moshe Dann

Bennett is different. He doesn’t play by the rules that have characterized the ruthless political game. Regardless of the party, with only some variance of dress codes and colorful attachments, twittering and texting, the candidates are all the same.

Naftali Bennett is a product of Israeli society; articulate and smart, a Sayeret Matkal veteran, he’s an insider that understands what’s going on.

He is also a financial success. But that is not what makes him dangerous to the establishment. The threat he poses stems not so much from his ideology, but rather from the fact that that he actually has one, that he articulates what he believes and stands for.

As refreshing as that sounds, it is a world away from most other politicians and so-called “leaders,” who pirouette on a shekel, or savage their opponents, depending on which way the winds of political success seem to be blowing. Bennett represents a kind of honesty and integrity that has not been seen in Israeli politics since Menachem Begin.

ISRAELI ELECTORAL campaigns and politics are all about personalities. Forget about ideology, forget about what they did or did not do, just “read my lips.”

Except that there are no lips…

           — Hat tip: Jerry Gordon[Return to headlines]

Middle East

2013: The Start of Israel’s Energy Independence

The mainstream media has neglected to inform the American public of Ha Shem’s great gift to Israel, the huge offshore natural gas fields about to begin production and the pilot tests of in situ oil extraction from the shale formation in the Shefla basin in 2013. Those Israel oil shale reserves might even rival those of Saudi Arabia. The development of these energy resources may enable Israel within this decade to become energy independent. Those offshore gas and on-shore oil shale developments have the potential of making Israel an energy independent political power in the Middle East and player in the world energy markets. The energy developments could pour billions of royalty revenues into a newly authorized Sovereign Wealth Fund that might significantly enhance the country’s high tech driven growth. Most importantly it would also provide the funds to enable the IDF to meet the threats arrayed against it.

The Tamar partners starting production of offshore natural gas in 2013 should boost the prospects of the IEI/Genie Energy pilot test and the future of oil shale development in the Shefla Basin. The combination of offshore natural gas production coupled with on-shore oil shale extraction is a geo-political game changer for Israel and the world energy markets. These developments in late 2012 marked the beginning of Israel’s long sought energy independence further enhancing the country’s economic growth and stability.

           — Hat tip: Jerry Gordon[Return to headlines]

Education: Egypt and Turkey Carry Out Cooperation Protocol

(ANSAmed) — CAIRO, DECEMBER 28 — The Suez Canal University of Egypt announced that they have started the student exchange program in scope of developing cooperation with Turkey in the education field. Prof. Muhammad Mohammadayn, the president of Suez Canal University, said the student exchange program was initiated as part of the protocol prepared to develop cooperation in areas of tourism and higher education between two countries. Mentioning that the student exchange would encourage reciprocal visits and cultural exchange, Mohammadayn said that 2014 would be Egyptian year in Turkey and Turkish year in Egypt as Anatolia news agency reported.

           — Hat tip: Insubria[Return to headlines]

Saudi Arabia: Website Editor Could Face Death Penalty

With many recent discussions here on ATS pertaining to Freedom of Speech and talk of repressive/oppressive control over people, I felt this would be an interesting example to show that a greater degree of freedom is allowed (at least here in the west).

A Saudi man created a website to discuss the role of religion in Saudi Arabia and was later arrested in June of 2012. Now his case is being passed to the higher courts in Saudi Arabia.

He faces a possible death sentence as he has several charges levied against him: blasphemy, insulting Islam through electronic channels, and apostasy.

The judges of this matter are said to base their decisions on their own interpretaion of religious law instead of any written legal code or precendent.

Apostasy and blashemy, according to the article, both carry automatic death sentences.

Here is the site [url] — translated to English by Microsoft’s Bing.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Sesquicentennial Comparisons: Black Slavery in America and Ottoman Turkey

By Andrew G. Bostom

marks the sesquicentennial (150th anniversary) of President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, which set the United States firmly on the path toward the abolition of slavery.

Frederick Douglass, in his autobiography, Life and Times, described how, in his view, Lincoln’s proclamation morphed the Civil War beyond a struggle to preserve the Union, into a transcendent war against slavery:

The first of January, 1863, was a memorable day in the progress of American liberty and civilization. It was the turning-point in the conflict between freedom and slavery. A death blow was then given to the slaveholding rebellion

During a January 13, 1865 speech in New York City, Douglass had elaborated:…

           — Hat tip: Andy Bostom[Return to headlines]

They Cut His Ears Off and Tied Him Upside Down — Harrowing True Story of Being Kidnapped by Somali Pirates

[WARNING: Disturbing content.]

Whipped with electrical cable, thrown into the sea and having an ear chopped off were just a few of the torturous ordeals 22 hostages endured when being kept captive by Somali pirates.

Only released earlier this month, the men lived in fear for nearly three years, but have now spoken out about their harrowing experience.

The Panama-flagged MV Iceberg One cargo ship was hijacked by Somali pirates as it set off in March 2010 on a voyage to Britain with a cargo of electrical goods.

But the men were left to endure the longest pirate hijacking in modern maritime history, after the Dubai-owners of the ship refused to pay the $10 million ransom they demanded.

And when the ransom money did not arrive, the torture sessions were increased.

‘They cut the ears off of one old Yemeni sailor. He is OK now but will need a few operations.

‘They also shot over their heads, hit them so hard that many have lost their teeth, whipped them with sticks and wires and tied them up and left them in the sun,’ said Mohamad Abdirahman, the Puntland Maritime Police Force director to The National.

The hostages’ health deteriorated quickly after only being fed one meal a day of rice and dirty drinking water, reported The Telegraph.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Video: The Syrian Diary: Unimaginable Crimes Committed by Terrorists

This exclusive documentary by Russian TV station, Rossiya 24, is a “must watch” as it gives a very good insight on the events that have been taking place in Syria since 2011. It shows how both the Syrian Army and the Syria people are defending their country Syria from the unimaginable crimes committed by extremist terrorists who operate with massive international media, military, intelligence, and financial support, a situation that no one would ever want to be in.

Warning: Contains graphic footage, 18+, not for shock, aimed only at documenting events in Syria and crimes of FSA terrorists.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

South Asia

Gunmen Kill Seven Pakistani Aid Workers

Shooting of six female aid workers and a male doctor appears to be latest attack by militants on public health teams

Gunmen have killed six Pakistani female aid workers and a male doctor in what appears to be the latest attack by Islamic militants on teams involved in public health campaigns.

Recent days have been violent in the troubled country, with dozens dying in a string of terrorist attacks. Analysts blame many of the strikes on militant groups keen to demonstrate their ability to cause casualties and destruction after the government rejected the Taliban’s call for ceasefire negotiations late last month.

“They are signalling to the people that the pain they are suffering is in fact the government’s fault because their offer of peace was rejected,” said Ejaz Haider, of the Jinnah Institute, a thinktank in the capital of Islamabad. “There is likely to be more violence as they ramp up their campaign in coming weeks.”

The militants have been stung by a loss of public support following indiscriminate attacks last year, a lack of economic development in the areas where they are strong, deals concluded by the authorities with some major local extremist commanders, and ongoing strikes by US drones.

Tuesday’s attack came in Swabi district, about 45 miles (75km) north-west of Islamabad, and was the first attack on aid workers in the area.

In Karachi, a bomb exploded near the headquarters of the Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM), a political party in the city, killing at least one and injuring dozens.

The city has been the site of a growing number of gunfights, bombing and assassinations in recent months as ethnic, sectarian and political factions, as well as criminals, struggle for power and influence. Leaders of militant religious groups have threatened to target the MQM which has vocally opposed extremism…

           — Hat tip: Vlad Tepes[Return to headlines]

Indian Gang Rape Victim Was Thrown Under Bus After Attack But Her Fiance Saved Her From Being Crushed Under Its Wheels

[WARNING: Disturbing content.]

The gang of men who attacked an Indian woman who later died from her horrific injuries tried to run her over with the bus she was brutally raped in, it emerged today.

The 23-year-old was tossed out of the moving vehicle only for her fiance to battle to pull her from under its wheels, police in Delhi have said.

‘They tried to drive the bus over the rape victim and her male friend. Her friend pulled her to safety, just in time’, an officer close to the investigation claims.

Neighbours said the couple were planning to marry in February but the woman, who remains anonymous, died on Saturday despite treatment at a Singapore hospital — two weeks after she was attacked.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Islamic Militants Massacre Five Women Teachers Travelling to Primary School in Protest at Female Education in Pakistan

[WARNING: Disturbing content.]

Five female teachers in Pakistan have been slaughtered by Islamic militants bent on keeping women and girls away from education.

They were murdered in a New Year’s Day ambush on the van carrying them home from their jobs at a community centre and primary school in the north-west of the country.

The teachers and two health workers — one man and one woman — were killed this afternoon in the conservative Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Far East

Fear the Russia/China Alliance

If Americans think of national security at all, its usually of Islamic terrorism or Iran, maybe North Korea.

Few are saying this, but what they should really be fearing is the growing Russia/China alliance.

From the Communist Party of China, International Department website:…

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

North Korean Leader Calls for End to “Confrontation” With South

In the first televised New Year address by a North Korean leader in 19 years, Kim Jong-un called for the end of “confrontation between the north and the south” of the Korean peninsula. The two Koreas never signed a treaty to end the 1950-1953 war.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman[Return to headlines]

Sub-Saharan Africa

South Africa Vanishes With Its Gold?

Last week’s shocking announcement by Statistics South Africa that the nation’s gold production had hit a 90-year low was met with token media coverage and surprisingly, hardly any outrage from labour unions, civil society or indeed the country’s population at large … The legacy of hatred and bitterness incited by the Anglo-Boer war and its cruel aftermath stimulated a toxic and destructive Afrikaner nationalism that eventually took hold of the country, with repercussions lasting almost a century. Throughout this period, gold provided an underpin to the nation’s economy. It contributed handsomely to tax coffers and generated valuable foreign revenue. What followed was spectacular wealth for a few and employment for thousands of desperate, marginalised people under despicable conditions at a very low wage. — Daily Maverick

Dominant Social Theme: Everything is still okay. Once apartheid died, the future became bright in both Zimbabwe and South Africa.

Free-Market Analysis: We never believed that either Zimbabwe or South Africa would work out as countries with a shared black and white heritage. Our fears have already been borne out in Zimbabwe and soon, we fear, the same sort of destruction will be visited on South Africa.

Within this context, gold production can serve as a sort of metaphor or barometer of national health. Now that gold production has hit a 90-year low, we wonder if South Africa itself is beginning to descend into the kind of vicious racism that has so scarred Zimbabwe.

Certainly black people in South Africa and Zimbabwe are justified in harboring a certain bitterness in their hearts over what occurred. But as circumstances change, so should those feelings. To continue to hate white people for apartheid in South Africa is ultimately self-defeating. It will likely contribute to lower South African living standards and diminished wealth. This has already happened in Zimbabwe.

The African National Congress (ANC), Africa’s dominant political party, is having a good deal of trouble proceeding and reports are that it might break up into several factions. One of the ways ANC leaders are attempting to salvage their political fortunes is by whipping up black-on-white resentment. This has the predictable effect of putting psychological pressure on white people in South Africa. Here’s an excerpt from a recent article on South Africa and a potential white exodus:

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Culture Wars

Homophobia: What Does it Really Mean?

How should we describe or interpret the savagery of people who physically, verbally, and psychologically abuse innocent people because of their sexual identity or orientation? Most people interpret such actions as homophobia. Yet the same label is pinned on a person who simply believes it is not good for men to have sex with men, or even to one who believes, despite his own sympathies, that marriage should not be redefined to include same-sex couples.

The power of that one word, homophobia, has been a significant feature of the same-sex marriage debate. Homophobia, the term, was invented in the 1960s by psychologist Dr George Weinberg to challenge the prevailing view that homosexuality was a psychological disorder. Weinberg effectively turned the tables on the prevailing view, alleging through his medically-inspired term that hostility to homosexuality was itself a psycho-social problem.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]


NGOs Plot Wave of Criminal Referrals to Legitimize International Criminal Court

Dominant Social Theme: The International Criminal Court fights for you and me — and worldwide justice against those who disobey our perception of what is correct with impunity.

Free-Market Analysis: We don’t usually pursue sourced stories because we analyze memes. But regular readers are well aware that a dominant social theme is not merely a hypothetical elite suggestion. Such themes can generate their own reality via something we call directed history.

When it comes to manmade enterprises like the International Criminal Court, directed history can be enlisted to provide legitimacy. And in this case, sourced prognostications of NGO support for the ICC in South America are borne out by articles like this one, excerpted above.

We’ve learned from sources that NGOs throughout South America and Africa are conducting an organized effort to identify crimes against humanity that can be referred to the ICC.

While there has been considerable pushback against the ICC in the West, such concerns are not so predominant in various developing countries. Here’s some more from the article:


In such a manner is international criminal law being erected, by creating a phony demand for an illegitimate judicial system. The crimes don’t really matter, nor are they necessarily valid ones except from the perspective of the larger powers-that-be that want certain enemies punished and specific “atrocities” illuminated.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Now UN Wants to Control Tourist Behavior … For the ‘Greater Good, ‘ of Course

We can see from the above how relentless UN officials are when it comes to stressing “sustainability.” This is a nonsense word, of course. The planet IS sustainable. It is a hunk of rock. It’s not going anywhere nor are the processes that make it what it is.

There is little if anything humans can do to “sustain” the planet’s current facilities. Air, water, weather, geological processes … all were put in place long before humans trod the Earth.

Sustainability is a phrase popularized by a power elite that wants to run the world and needs to control large populations in order to do so. Only by controlling human consumption of energy and other “resources” can the top elites hope to generate the kind of all-encompassing world government they seek.

This is the reason the elites focus so heavily on sustainability and use every tool at their disposal to emphasize it. World Tourism Day is just another opportunity to deliver the message.

The Secretary-General of the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Taleb Rifai, made the point that “sustainable energy in the tourism sector can also help reduce energy poverty by implementing the objectives of the Sustainable Energy for All initiative… “

According to Rifai, conservation creates jobs and opportunities for “millions.” But this is just another unprovable bromide. It is hard to see how foregoing something creates employment.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]

Succour for the Vain and Vacuous: Why I Loathe Twitter

The clue, perhaps, is in the name. Write a blog and you’re a blogger. Hack into a computer and you’re a hacker. So it’s safe to say that when they came up with ‘’, they weren’t expecting much in the way of intelligent discourse. And so it has proved.

David Cameron may have got into trouble in 2009 when he joked: ‘The trouble with Twitter … too many twits might make a tw*t.’ But he was spot on.

In the three years since the Prime Minister made the remark, Twitter has elevated inanity to a global art form.

           — Hat tip: JD[Return to headlines]