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SOTT Exclusive: Reckless sanctions against Russia affect Dutch companies, farmers, and flower growers


It's a dark day for tulip growers in Holland as Russia threats to ban flower imports from the country
"From the European Union (EU), there are four different sanctions regimes in place in connection with the embezzlement of Ukrainian state funds, the illegal annexation of Crimea and the destabilization of eastern Ukraine. These sanctions have implications for businesses"
The above quote is a short introductory description to Russian sanctions that appears on the official website of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency. The sanctions against Russia vary from an export ban on certain equipment, technology and services for deep water oil exploration and production in Russia, to capital market restrictions against several Russian state-owned companies in the defense sectors. As the description explains, these sanctions have been imposed on Russia due its alleged aggression and 'crossing the line' in Ukraine. The only problem with the rationale for sanctions against Russia is that they are baseless.

As one of Europe's most famous Professor Emeritus' in public and civil law, Karl Albrecht Schachtschneider, said:
"The self-determination of Crimean citizens can not be eliminated by treaties or the Ukrainian constitution. Crimea has, and had as autonomous republic, the right to choose their own path, even if it means separation from Ukraine. The help that Russia offered was legitimate and certainly no violation of international law."
Despite what warmongers in Washington and the EU would like the world to believe, there was no illegal annexation of Crimea, and it is the West itself that is guilty of the destabilisation of and conflict in eastern Ukraine. Yet, despite these facts, sanctions were imposed against Russia by the EU - which were recently extended until January 31, 2016. The fact that the sanctions amount to the EU shooting itself in the foot is apparently irrelevant to the EU power brokers because, after all, only ordinary Europeans will suffer. The Netherlands is no exception when it comes to its farmers and employers feeling the pressure as a result of this recklessness by the EU.

Before the sanctions, the Netherlands exported €1.5 billion worth of agricultural products to Russia, the most important products being flowers and plants, with a total export value of €390 million in 2013. The second most important export to Russia is milk products. In 2013, cheese, milk, butter, and eggs accounted for €301 million worth of Dutch exports. In third place are vegetables and fruit, with an export value of €184 million. All these exports have seen marked decreases as Russia imposed its own sanctions against the EU in August 2014. Russia has boycotted vegetables, fruit, dairy products, meat, and fish from the Netherlands: bad news for the biggest exporter of fresh produce to Russia - and Russia's second-largest market after Germany.


Bin Laden family killed in jet crash at UK airport

© Twitter/tubman89
The £7million private jet was owned by a company linked to the Bin Laden family based in the Jeddah HQ
Family members of Osama Bin Laden were on board a plane which crashed in Hampshire, the Saudi Arabian embassy in the UK has said.

The private jet crashed near Blackbushe Airport, Yateley, on Friday.

In a statement on Twitter, the Saudi ambassador to the UK, Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf Al Saud, offered condolences to the Bin Laden family.

The embassy said it was working with the British authorities to investigate the incident.

The statement said: "His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf Al Saud... has paid his condolences to the family and relatives of Mohammed bin Laden at Blackbushe airport in Britain for the great loss they have suffered as a result of the crash of the plane that was carrying the family."

The embassy added that it was working with the British authorities to ensure the speedy handover of the bodies for funerals and burials in Saudi Arabia.

The plane - an Embraer Phenom 300 - is reported to have belonged to an aviation firm owned by the Saudi-based family of the former al-Qaeda leader.


HPV vaccine required in 7th grade Rhode Island schools, CDC finds no safety concerns

© Getty Images
Seventh-graders in all public and private schools in Rhode Island are now required to get the HPV vaccine.

Starting this fall, seventh-graders who do not get the vaccine will not be allowed to attend school unless their parents seek an exemption for medical or religious reasons, our news partners at The Providence Journal report.

Tricia Washburn, chief of the office of immunization for the Rhode Island Department of Health, said the Centers for Disease Control found no safety concerns with the vaccine.

Comment: Read here for more information on HPV vaccines: The Truth About the Gardasil Vaccine by Dr. Sherri Tenpenny

Bad Guys

Ukraine's crime-rate jumps 90% following Washington's 'Maidan revolution'

Ukrainian thugs - useful idiots for corporate thieves
A girl was abducted last month by an unknown person on Independence [Maidan] Square in Kyiv on a Sunday evening. This was reported on the traffic police website:
"Kiev. Girl kidnapped, Independence Square. A girl was forced into a car, which fled in the direction of a pedestrian zone. 06/14/2015, 21:40. BMW 5 Series, AK6068CI, dark color. Information of the Kiev State Automobile Inspectorate."
On the same day, a 16-year-old girl was kidnapped in the Ivano-Frankivsk Region, as reported by the press service of the regional administration of the Interior Ministry:
"On June 14, around 1:30 am on the road between the villages of Rosokhach and Vinograd in Gorodenkovskii district, an unknown person forced a girl into a VAZ (Lada) car and drove off in an unknown direction. Her current whereabouts are unknown."

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Lost generation: Youth unemployment in Italy highest in 38 years

© Giampiero Sposito / Reuters
Youth unemployment has increased to 44.2 percent in June, according to the Italian national statistics office. It's the highest level since 1977 and about twice the eurozone average.

The overall unemployment also increased in June, according to the data published Friday.

"In June 2015 22.297 million persons were employed, -0.1 percent with respect to May 2015. Unemployed were 3.233 million, +1.7 percent over the previous month," said the report.

The average unemployment rate across the EU stood at 9.6 percent in June.

Blue Planet

'Alternative news' power and the information war: Demand Your teleSUR, RT, PressTV, and CCTV!

Mighty new television networks based in South America, Russia, China and Iran are locked in what could only be described as an epic battle against the omnipresent Western propaganda and indoctrination networks.

Their programs can be seen all over the globe, and they have been dramatically changing the lives of millions in Africa, Latin America and the Middle East, even in some hubs of the Empire itself, like New York and London. Lies of colonialist and imperialist demagoguery are painstakingly challenged. Those who used to be voiceless are now being clearly heard.

It is a breathtaking, truly beautiful battle, and those of us who are at the front line of it, by making films, writing for or speaking on the airwaves of the anti-imperialist networks, are thoroughly determined to give our very best, and if necessary, even to risk our lives!

Some of us went very close to death, in the toughest slums of Africa, Asia and Latin America, or at the battlefields, at the corners of the world where almost no one really dares to go. We confronted the Empire. Some made that one extra step, crossed the invisible line, and fell; never came back. Others managed to return, just to be spat at by those who never left the couch, for not going "all the way", for surviving, for somehow managing not to die.

Comment: We are involved in an information war, make no mistake. Listen to Hillary Clinton fight for the financial support to better help propagate lies.


TSA chief: Vows security overhaul, 96% failure rate in detecting weapons

How many fingers? Yes I mean YOU.
Still reeling from a report that found the US Transportation Security Administration failed to uncover 96 percent of explosives going through the nation's airports, the agency's newly appointed chief vowed to close the disturbing security gaps.

Transportation Security Administrator Peter Neffenger told Congress that the department will begin retraining thousands of airport security screeners and place new limits on a TSA program that allows travelers to pass through an expedited security screening.

"My highest priority is to ensure solutions to the recent covert testing failures," said Neffenger at a hearing conducted by the House of Representatives. "This is a huge concern and it greatly disturbs me that we had that failure at the checkpoint."

The covert testing failures Neffenger referred to were detailed in a leaked report conducted by the Department of Homeland Security's Office of the Inspector General. The report found that TSA agents failed to detect fake bombs and weapons at security checkpoints 67 out of 70 times, or nearly 96 percent of the time.

Comment: Perhaps the TSA should clean up its own act rather than submit passengers to stricter, more time-consuming and questionable health risk protocols. Are these findings of a 96% failure rate legit or is it a maneuver to justify biometric screenings? Had to ask.


Fukushima operator sued for suicide of 102-year-old by hanging during evacuation

Mieko Okubo holds a photograph of her father-in-law, Fumio Okubo, who committed suicide at the age of 102 in April 2011.
The family of a 102-year-old resident of a village near the crippled Fukushima power plant, who committed suicide due to depression over leaving his home, has sued TEPCO, saying the operator should "know the pains that we as his family have to suffer."

Fumio Okubo was living in the village of Iitate, only 38 km from Fukushima Daiichi, when a massive earthquake and tsunami led to the meltdown of three nuclear reactors at the nuclear plant in March 2011. His village was in an area of moderate contamination.

A month later in April, the authorities called for the village to be evacuated, but Okudo was apparently emotionally unable to leave the home where he was born and had lived his entire life.

After learning about the evacuation order on April 22, 2011 via TV, the old farmer told his daughter-in-law Mieko Okubo: "I don't want to evacuate... I think I have lived a bit too long." The next day Mieko found him hanging his room.

Comment: Sadly, as indicated, there may have been many other residents that took their lives due to the preventable and ongoing disaster of the nuclear meltdown and devastating tsunami. This is a side of the event we need to acknowledge and contemplate.

Meanwhile, back at Fukushima Daichi, robots are proving the facility is still to "hot" to handle and the radiation leak continues to spread and contaminate out of control.


Israel to build 300 new 'illegitimate' West Bank homes amid demolition protests, 431 in E. Jerusalem

Expend and Expand
The US has lashed out at Israel's decision to allow "illegitimate" new settlements in the occupied West Bank. The go-ahead for 300 new homes coincided with protests against the demolition of two apartment blocks illegally built in the same area.

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued final approval for the "immediate construction of 300 housing units" on site in Beit El, a Jewish settlement in the central West Bank, according to a statement issued by his office.

Moreover, planning approval was released for the construction of another 413 homes in East Jerusalem.

The decision immediately sparked international condemnation, including criticism from Israel's close ally, the US.

Comment: Reset, repeat. If nothing else, Israel is consistent. Protest, do nothing. The US is also consistent.


Palestinian toddler burned to death in suspected Jewish 'price tag' attack

© Abed Omar Qusini / Reuters
An Israeli soldier walks past a house that had been torched in a suspected attack by Jewish extremists killing an 18-month-old Palestinian child, injuring a four-year-old brother and both their parents at Kafr Duma village near the West Bank city of Nablus July 31, 2015.
A suspected "price tag," or retaliation, arson attack by right-wing Jewish settlers killed an 18-month-old Palestinian child in a house in the occupied West Bank and injured several other people, according to Israeli police.

The toddler died in a house fire which broke out in a village of Kafr Duma near the West Bank city of Nablus, Reuters reports.

The victim's four-year-old brother and both parents were also injured and have been brought to the hospital. The attack took place in the early hours of the morning when the family was fast asleep and could not react immediately.