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Donetsk rebels give black boxes to Malaysian investigators; no evidence they tampered with the site

black box
© Reuters
A rescue worker walks across a field carrying a flight data recorder at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 in Hrabove July 18, 2014 in this still image taken from video
The Ukrainian militia have handed over to Malaysian experts the black boxes from the Malaysian Boeing-777 airliner that crashed in east Ukraine on July 17.

The Donetsk People's Republic's (DPR) Prime Minister Aleksandr Boroday handed over the black boxes from the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 early on Tuesday.

"Here they are, the black boxes," Boroday told reporters. "According to the memorandum the Malaysian side must pass on the boxes to the experts from the ICAO [International Civil Aviation Organization]."

Both sides signed a document, finalizing the procedure.
Malaysia delegation rep and Dutch rep now signing to receive #MH17 black boxes from rebels in #Donetsk. pic.twitter.com/RR4oHkcrVf

- Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) July 21, 2014
Colonel Mohamed Sakri of Malaysian National Security Council said that the two black boxes were "in good condition."

Earlier, Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak said an agreement had been reached with militiamen at the scene of the crash that the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 black boxes will be handed over to Malaysian authorities in Donetsk at 9pm Ukrainian time.

Star of David

Bribery, blackmail and bullying - Israel's modus operandi

Netanyahu bully
© Unknown
On 26 November 1947, when it became apparent to Zionists and their supporters that the UN vote on the Partition of Palestine would be short of the required two thirds majority in the General Assembly, they filibustered for a postponement until after Thanksgiving thereby gaining time to threaten the loss of aid to nations such as Greece - which planned on voting against - into changing their votes.

U.S. President Truman - also threatened with loss of Jewish support in the upcoming Presidential election - later noted that:
The facts were that not only were there pressure movements around the United Nations unlike anything that had been seen there before, but that the White House, too, was subjected to a constant barrage. I do not think I ever had as much pressure and propaganda aimed at the White House as I had in this instance. The persistence of a few of the extreme Zionist leaders - actuated by political motives and engaging in political threats - disturbed and annoyed me.

U.S. intelligence admits the obvious: No link to Russia found in crash of Flight MH17

© Reuters / Maxim Zmeyev
A part of the wreckage is seen at the crash site of the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 near the village of Hrabove (Grabovo), in the Donetsk region July 21, 2014.
Unnamed US officials are telling Associated Press that their intelligence suggests Malaysia plane shot down by anti-Kiev militia, no link to Russia found.

Officials believe that the passenger aircraft was intercepted by an SA-11 surface-to-air missile, which was fired by Ukrainian militia members. One official said the likeliest explanation was the aircraft was shot down in error, an assertion that seem to be bolstered by the previous downing of 12 Ukrainian military aircraft by militants in the region.

Intelligence suggests that, although the US maintains that Russia "created the conditions" that led to the incident, officials were not aware of the presence of any Russians during the missile launch, and would not confirm that the missile crew was trained in Russia.

The crash of the airliner last week with 298 passengers aboard has only exacerbated the row between the US, European powers and Russia over the developing situation in eastern Ukraine.

Fact-Free Zone

Putin did It!
© cluborlov.blogspot
The fog of war that has been hovering over eastern Ukraine has now spread to the shores of the Potomac, and from there has inundated ever pore of western body politic. The party line is that pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine have shot down Malaysia Airlines flight MH-17, using a surface-to-air missile provided by Russia, with Russia's support and complicity. The response is to push for tougher sanctions against Russian companies and Mr. Putin's entourage.

None of this is based on fact. To start with, it isn't known that MH-17 was brought down by a surface-to-air missile; it could have been an air-to-air missile, a bomb on board, a mechanical failure, or the same (or different) mysterious force that brought down MH-370 earlier this year. Mysteries abound, and yet western media knows it's Mr. Putin's fault.

Step through the looking glass over to Russia, and you hear a completely different story: the plane was shot down by the Ukrainians in order to frame the rebels and Russia in an attempt to pull NATO into the conflict.

Here, we have numerous supporting "facts," at varying levels of truthiness. But I have no way to independently verify any of them, and so instead I will organize what has been known into a pattern, and let you decide for yourself which story (if any) you should believe.

When trying to catch a criminal, a standard method is to look at means, motive and opportunity. Was the criminal physically capable of committing the act? Did the criminal have a good reason for committing it? Did the criminal get a chance to do it? One more criterion is often quite helpful: does the crime fit the perpetrator's known modus operandi? Let's give this method a try.

An aging population is Obama's BS excuse for why millions of American aren't working

© Win McNamee/Getty Images
President Barack Obama’s economic advisers say millions of people aren’t working because of an aging population, rebutting GOP arguments that the problem is really over-regulation.
The White House last week said the rising number of non-working people in the country reflects an inevitable trend caused by an aging population, an attempt to rebut Republican arguments that the real problems are federal regulations and an oversized government.

The report from President Barack Obama's Council of Economic Advisers also said little can be done to reverse the trend outside of allowing more immigrants to enter the country, which would help create a younger workforce.

Republicans have argued for years now that the private sector has limped along because of government interference through regulation, and an exploding national debt that companies see as a justification for potential tax hikes down the road. The GOP says these government threats are borne out in data that shows Obama has presided over an economy that failed to create jobs at rates seen in past recovery periods.

Republicans have passed dozens of bills aimed at slowing regulation and cutting spending, most of which have been ignored by the Democratic Senate.
Arrow Down

Journalists and anti-vax campaigners could be considered terrorists under UK Law

Laws and Acts
© Daily Bix
The UK's terrorism laws are so broad they could be applied to journalists and their supporters, as well as crimes that have nothing to do with terrorism, according to a new report from the Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation.

David Anderson QC presented his report to Parliament today, and called on ministers to reverse the increasing "creep" of the laws in recent years.

The report focused on the definition of terrorism in the UK, which among other things currently means that someone can be considered a terrorist if they publish material that is considered to endanger life or to pose a health risk to the public. This could have legitimate purposes, perhaps in the case of a radical cleric calling for violence, or someone distributing plans on how to manufacture bombs.

But the problem is that the law isn't specific enough, meaning that it can be applied to cases that do not have anything to do with terrorism. Anderson makes reference to section 1(1)(b) of the Terrorism Act 2000, which states, "In this Act "terrorism" means the use or threat of action where the use or threat is designed to influence the government [or an international governmental organisation] or to intimidate the public or a section of the public."

That may sound reasonable, but upon closer inspection it's quite wide-reaching, and the report highlights that in other countries, a "terrorist" under this section must additionally have the intention of coercing or intimidating the government. There is concern that this broader definition gives police and the legal system much greater powers where they are not necessary or appropriate.

Two-faced Obama calls for Gaza ceasefire after bloodiest day of fighting leaves Palestinian death toll at 476

Orthodox Jews dance with Israeli soldiers near Israel's border with the Gaza Strip, on July 20, 2014
US President Barack Obama called for an "immediate ceasefire" between Israel and Hamas on Sunday, after the bloodiest day of fighting in Gaza raised the number of Palestinians killed to 476.

The UN Security Council expressed concern for the growing number of casualties in Gaza and issued a fresh appeal for an immediate ceasefire as Israel ramped up a major military offensive with fresh strikes Monday in the Palestinian territory.

"The members of the Security Council express serious concern about the growing numbers of casualties," said Rwandan Ambassador Eugene Richard Gasana, whose country chairs the 15-member council.

The Palestinian death toll soared to 476 after the bloodiest single day in Gaza in five years, with a spokesman for the enclave's emergency services saying more than a third of Sunday's 120 victims were women and children.

Chinese president travels to Latin America: secures oil, gold deals with Venezuela; visits Argentina, Cuba

© AFP/Leo Ramirez
Chinese President Xi Jinping has signed a row of oil and mineral deals with Venezuela. The Chinese leader is on a four-country tour of Latin America aimed to increasing influence in the region.

The 38 economic agreements are related to the production and development of Venezuelan oil and agriculture, as well as social and cultural expansion, says the BBC. The deals provides a credit line of $4 billion in return for Venezuelan oil and oil products, as well as allocating $691 million to explore Venezuela's gold and copper reserves, and an agreement to develop the countries' third jointly-owned satellite.

China is the second-largest market for Venezuelan oil after the United States.

The underlying purpose of the visit has been to secure more natural resources from Latin America to fuel China's long term economic expansion, BBC cites analysts. The Venezuela negotiations were preceded by visits to Brazil and Argentina.

At the BRICS summit in Brazil the Chinese leader, along with the other emerging powers Brazil, Russia, India and South Africa, launched a $100 billion BRICS Development Bank and a reserve currency pool worth over another $100 billion. Both will counter the influence of Western-based lending institutions and the dollar.

  • De-Dollarization of world in process: BRICS nations forming anti-dollar alliance


BRICS establishes fairer alternative in global economic system dominated by greedy Western powers

© AFP Photo/Yasuyoshi Chiba
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff (R) makes a speach during the 6th BRICS Summit in Fortaleza, Brazil, on July 15, 2014
By creating their own multilateral financial institutions, the BRICS emerging-market powers are shaking up global economic governance but remain far from dismantling the post-war system dominated by the West.

For the past 70 years, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank have been the pillars of the world's economic system, coming to the rescue of countries in trouble and supporting development projects, respectively.

Comment: The idea that the IMF and World Bank "came to the rescue of countries in trouble" is one much espoused through the mainstream media, but the reality is that they do anything but rescue those countries. The truth is that those institutions have been at the heart of allowing foreign corporations to invade poor countries and strip them of their natural resources and raw materials, all for the gain of the greedy 1%. The only thing these institutions have been the pillar of is increasing the wealth and power of the psychopathic elite.

But the Bretton Woods institutions are regularly criticised for their inability to reflect the growing and important contributions of the major emerging economies to the global economy.

China, the world's second-largest economy, continues to have just slightly more voting power in the IMF than Italy, about five times smaller. And, since their creation in 1944, the IMF and the World Bank have only been led by Americans and Europeans.

UK police frequently deploy tasers at point-blank range - 'purely a means of pain compliance'

© AFP/Carl De Souza
Police Tasers are under scrutiny in the UK after a report revealed they are frequently deployed at point-blank range, contrary to official training, leading to a spike in complaints. The report called the practice "purely a means of pain compliance."

Britain's Independent Police Complaints Commission said a technique known as "drive stun", when a Taser is applied directly to the flesh and the trigger pulled with no probes being fired, is still being used in 16 percent of firings, despite officers no longer being trained to use it in this fashion.

In 2013, Tasers were deployed 10,380 times across England and Wales, provoking 154 complaints, 15 of which related to "drive stun" incidents.

The report also raises concerns about the use of Tasers on people in police custody, and on vulnerable people such as the mentally ill and young people. It also questioned why some smaller police forces were more likely to use them.