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Joe Biden's cocaine-using, Navy-busted son now working for huge Ukraine company

Joe Biden's Son
© Twitter
Within weeks of being kicked out of the Navy Reserve after testing positive for cocaine use, Vice President Joe Biden's son, Hunter, was appointed to the board of directors of the largest non-governmental gas producer in war-torn Ukraine.

Only now has it been revealed that Robert Hunter Biden, the vice president's second son, was discharged from the Navy Reserve in February of 2014. Less than a year earlier, he had applied for and was accepted into a Navy program that allows civilians with no prior service to receive a limited duty officer's commission.
Whistle

New Zealand national police raid investigative journalist's home

© AP/Mark Mitchell/New Zealand Herald
Nicky Hager
Agents from New Zealand's national police force ransacked the home of a prominent independent journalist earlier this month who was collaborating with The Intercept on stories from the NSA archive furnished by Edward Snowden. The stated purpose of the 10-hour police raid was to identify the source for allegations that the reporter, Nicky Hager, recently published in a book that caused a major political firestorm and led to the resignation of a top government minister.

But in seizing all the paper files and electronic devices in Hager's home, the authorities may have also taken source material concerning other unrelated stories that Hager was pursuing. Recognizing the severity of the threat posed to press freedoms from this raid, the Freedom of the Press Foundation today announced a global campaign to raise funds for Hager's legal defense.

In August, one month before New Zealand's national election, Hager published Dirty Politics, which showed that key figures in Prime Minister John Key's National Party were feeding derogatory information about their opponents to a virulent right-wing blogger named Cameron Slater. Hager published evidence in the form of incriminating emails, provided by a hacker, demonstrating coordination between National Party officials and Slater. The ensuing scandal forced the resignation of a top Key ally, Justice Minister Judith Collins, and implicated numerous other National Party officials and supporters. Despite the scandal, the National Party won a resounding victory in the election, sending Key to a third term as prime minister.

On October 2 - less than two weeks after the election - detectives from a regional "major crime team" came to Hager's Wellington home armed with a search warrant authorizing them to seize anything that might lead them to the identity of his source for Dirty Politics. The warrant shows that prior to the raid, a police "intelligence analyst" had studied Hager's media appearances in an effort to discover information about his sources for the book, taking particular note of references Hager made to knowing the source's identity.

Comment: For more on Nicky Hager, see also:

Radar

Perpetual War State: U.S. Army conducts largest simulated ground-combat exercise since 9-11

© Reuters / Shamil Zhumatov
Late last month, the US Army completed the largest simulated ground-combat exercise since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 in preparation for a confrontation with the likes Islamic State, which blends insurgent tactics with large ground-force maneuvers.

The 12-day exercise held at the Army's 200,000-acre Joint Readiness Training Center in Fort Polk, Louisiana included an initial drop of about a thousand paratroopers from the 2nd Brigade Combat Team of the 82nd Airborne Division along with numerous combat and reconnaissance materials needed for a swift-response scenario, The Huffington Post reported.

Flown into fictional enemy territory - "controlled" by 800 troops of an actual airborne battalion known during the exercise as Opposing Force - the paratroopers are charged with preparing for intense fighting drills in an environment pre-planned to be as hectic than an actual combat scene, if not more so.

Upon landing, the "troops will clear the airstrip with a front-end loader that came down by chute with them. Then they'll begin waving in a stream of heavy cargo planes carrying another 4,000 paratroopers; 2,000 reinforcing troops; and armored vehicles, heavy weapons and even helicopter gunships. While Air Force fighters circle overhead, they will set up a high-tech, multi-room air-conditioned tactical operations center to manage the multiple firefights breaking out, and link up with clandestine Special Operations Forces who preceded them on the ground," The Huffington Post's David Wood reported.

Brick Wall

Putin warns of the futility and danger of blackmailing Russia

© RIA Novosti / Alexey Druzhinin
In an interview with Politika, a Serbian newspaper, Russia's president, Vladimir Putin, said that it is futile and dangerous for the US and its European puppets to blackmail Russia and that the Exceptional Nation and its vassals should consider the risks that are inherent in aggressive disputes between countries heavily armed with nuclear weapons. Putin noted that Obama took a hostile attitude toward Russia in Obama's UN speech to the General Assembly on September 24 when Obama declared Russia to be one of the three threats to the world along with the Islamic State and Ebola. President Putin said that unilateral and punitive actions taken against Russia can provoke a crisis, and that if Washington's purpose is to "isolate our country, it is an absurd and illusory goal."

Here are some of President Putin's direct quotes:
"How can we talk about de-escalation in Ukraine while the decisions on new sanctions are introduced almost simultaneously with the agreements on the peace process?"

"Together with the sanctions against entire sectors of our economy, this approach can be called nothing but hostile."

"We hope that our partners will realize the futility of attempts to blackmail Russia and remember what consequences discord between major nuclear powers could bring for strategic stability."
If we don't all die from nuclear blasts, radiation, and nuclear winter, it will be because of the humanity and common sense - both of which are missing in Washington - of the President of Russia.

Comment: To get a better understanding of evil, it's influence on politics and how it effects society, read Political Ponerology. No one has explained better the true nature of evil and how it manifests on our planet.

Megaphone

UK Jewish lawmaker calls government "cowardly" over Palestine abstention vote

A British Jewish lawmaker has branded the government "cowardly" after it abstained from the vote on Palestinian statehood.

Speaking with the Anadolu Agency on Wednesday, Gerald Kaufman accused the government of running away from the debate in "a very cowardly way."

"Members of the government and conservative backbenchers were instructed not to vote, which was a very cowardly thing to do," he said.

The Conservative Party and governing coalition partner the Liberal Democrats are reported to have told their ministers to abstain from Monday's vote on Palestine statehood recognition.

The 84-year-old - an opposition Labour Party politician, who has been a Member of Parliament since 1970 - told AA that he thought that if a Labour government was elected that official Palestine recognition would "grow exponentially."

"People like me will give a Labour government no peace until they recognize Palestine," Kaufman told AA.

Labour Party Leader Ed Miliband voted for the motion, while Prime Minister David Cameron and conservative ministers abstained.
Stock Down

Hong Kong could face long-term economic repercussions as a result of protests

hong kong protests
© REUTERS/ Carlos Barria
Pro-democracy protesters (L) scuffle with anti-Occupy Central protesters (R) as they grab a metal fence at the main protest site in Admiralty in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong's economy could face economic repercussions in the long-term as a result of the region's ongoing pro-democracy protests, Societe Generale economist Wei Yao told CNBC.

"The short-term damage to the economy is already visible, with retail sales and tourism badly hit. [But] the social discontent and its aftermath are also likely to cast a long shadow over the city's long-term economic potential," Wei was quoted as saying by CNBC.

Protesters in Hong Kong have carried out demonstrations for three weeks now, recently sparking violent clashes between the police and demonstrators. According to CNBC, should protests continue, Hong Kong may lose favor with Beijing, which could be detrimental to the special administrative region's economic future. Hong Kong could lose out on becoming a test ground for liberalization, much like Shanghai's free trade zone, which could boost the region's income per capita by 7 to 12 percent by 2030, according to the media.

Comment: The protests, which were instigated by US led patsies may have achieved one of the aims of the US, which has been seeking to undermine China. It is not about having Hong Kong vote for who they desire to see in power, it is about getting the foreign-backed political cabal behind "Occupy Central" into power, and disarming Beijing of any means to prevent what is for all intents and purposes the "soft" recolonization of Hong Kong, and a further attempt to divide and destabilize China as a whole.

US admits it is funding Hong Kong "Occupy Central"

HK 'Occupy Central' movement was thoroughly scripted by U.S. State Department

US backed Hong Kong protests: Beware of staged violence

Eye 2

Creating the enemy: Western neo-con policy of endless war demands threat of terrorism be kept alive

© Reuters/Ivan Peredruk
A photograph taken by a passer-by shows victims being helped near Tavistock Place in London following a bomb blast on a bus July 7, 2005
If the UK government really sought to keep the nation safe from terrorism, it would stop meddling in the internal affairs of Mideast states instead of hyping the Islamic terror threat, and at the same time, doing everything for it to be in place.

Exactly 70 years ago this autumn, British civilians faced a very real terror threat - in the shape of Nazi Germany's V-2 rockets. While exactly 40 years ago, an IRA bombing campaign brought 'The Troubles' of Northern Ireland to the British mainland.

What is interesting about the events of 1944 and 1974 is that the government downplayed the threat to citizens, even though the threat of being killed or injured in the violence was greater than it is now. A V-2 rocket attack, for instance, killed 160 shoppers on one occasion.

Today though, with Islamic terrorism, the opposite has happened. The government keeps reminding us of the enormous dangers we face. No one disputes that there is an Islamist terror threat in the UK, we remember the terrible 7/7 bombings in London which killed 52 people in 2005, but the government seems keen to hype the threat, whereas in the past it played such threats down and didn't allow terror attacks to change our way of life. We have invasive security procedures at our airports, tanks appearing at Heathrow just a few days before the big anti-Iraq war march in London in 2003 and our private emails and phone calls intercepted in the so-called "war on terror."

Meanwhile, truth-tellers and whistleblowers like Edward Snowden and Julian Assange are attacked by establishment gatekeepers for the help their revelations might give to "terrorists."

Comment: The author makes some good points, but misses out on the bigger point, which is that the latest boogeyman under the bed, ISIS, is a creation of Western psychopathic warmongers and their stooges in the Middle East:

X

Fear on Wall Street? Nine ominous financial market signals not seen in years

Is the stock market about to crash? Hopefully not, and there definitely have been quite a few "false alarms" over the past few years. But without a doubt we have been living through one of the greatest financial bubbles in U.S. history, and the markets are absolutely primed for a full-blown crash. That doesn't mean that one will happen now, but we are starting to see some ominous things happen in the financial world that we have not seen happen in a very long time. So many of the same patterns that we witnessed just prior to the bursting of the dotcom bubble and just prior to the 2008 financial crisis are repeating themselves again. Hopefully we still have at least a little bit more time before stocks completely crash, because when this market does implode it is going to be a doozy.

The following are 9 ominous signals coming from the financial markets that we have not seen in years...

#1 By the time the markets closed on Monday, we had witnessed the biggest three day decline for U.S. stocks since 2011.

#2 On Monday, the S&P 500 moved below its 200 day moving average for the first time in about two years. The last time this happened after such an extended streak of success, the S&P 500 ended up declining by a total of 22 percent.

#3 This week the put-call ratio actually moved higher than it was at any point during the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008. This is an indication that there is a tremendous amount of fear on Wall Street right now.
Die

More talk but no action: Putin says gas deal with Ukraine for winter months only, Poroshenko says no deal at all

© Reuters/Alessandro Garofalo
Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko arrives for a meeting, on the sidelines of the Europe-Asia summit (ASEM) in Milan October 17, 2014.
Kiev and Moscow have failed to resolve their gas supplies dispute, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said after meeting Russia's leader. According to Putin, only an agreement for winter supplies has been reached, but details are still to be worked out.

"We agreed on the basic parameters of the gas contract," Poroshenko told reporters in Milan where leaders from Europe and Asia gathered for the ASEM Summit. According to the Ukrainian president, the Ukrainian side is looking for sources of funding to pay off the arrears.

The optimistic statement came after Poroshenko met with Russian Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak and the head of Gazprom Aleksey Miller.

But emerging from a meeting Russia's President Vladimir Putin later in the day, the Ukrainian leader said that no agreement had been reached. New talks have been scheduled for October 21; the EU is once again set to mediate the process.

"We have failed to reach any practical results," Poroshenko told reporters after a 45-minute meeting with Putin. He noted that "some progress" in the dispute but said that details are yet to be worked out.
Chess

Russia, EU leaders make limited progress in Milan talks, reach tentative gas deal

© REUTERS/Daniel Dal Zennaro/Pool
Russia's President Vladimir Putin (L) talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel (R) as Italy's Prime Minister Matteo Renzi stands on the back during a meeting on the sidelines of a Europe-Asia summit
Russia and Ukraine made progress on Friday towards resolving a row over gas supplies, but European leaders said Moscow had to do much more to prop up a fragile ceasefire and end fighting in eastern Ukraine.

The mooted deal aimed at re-opening Russian gas supplies to Ukraine ahead of the cold winter months came as something of a surprise following an initial round of talks in Milan that the Kremlin said was "full of misunderstandings and disagreements".

However, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said a subsequent meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the leaders of France and German had made some headway in defusing a crisis that has revived memories of Cold War enmity.

"We have the first limited progress on the gas issue. We have agreed on the main parameters of the contract," he said, adding that all sides remain committed to a ceasefire deal struck last month to halt a pro-Russia revolt.

Comment: The Western press has been trying to place blame for the situation in Ukraine on Russia, when clearly the US has been the main instigator. The US controls Germany, so if Merkel is setting a tone that is not productive, she is only obeying her masters. As the US has its own reasons for wanting Europe to lose Russian gas supplies, it will be interesting to see if the summit will produce any lasting changes.

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