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Sat, 31 Jul 2021
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Leave Libya as soon as possible; Clinton tells Gaddafi

libyan protests

In a tough message hours after the UN slapped "biting" sanctions on the Libyan regime, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has told a bellicose Muammar Gaddafi to leave the country and end his regime as soon as possible. "We think he must go as soon as possible without further bloodshed and violence," Clinton told reporters as she headed towards Geneva to attend the UN Human Rights Council meeting on Monday.

"We want him to leave and we want him to end his regime and call off the mercenaries and those troops that remain loyal to him. How he manages that is obviously up to him and to his family," Clinton said.

"We have consistently in many conversations over the last week sent messages, and along with partners in the region and beyond have made it clear we expect him to leave. But we're not involved in any kind of negotiation with him over that," she said in response to a question.


Farrakhan: Mideast Uprisings Will Come to US

© unknown
Louis Farrakhan
Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan predicted on Sunday that America faces imminent uprisings that mirror those in the Middle East.

"What you are looking at in Tunisia, in Egypt ... Libya, in Bahrain ... what you see happening there ... you'd better prepare because it will be coming to your door," Farrakhan said in a booming voice, thousands of followers cheering in his wake.

Farrakhan also called on President Barack Obama to allow protesters to march, urging the president not to attack innocent people when they do.

The controversial minster spoke to a packed house at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont as part of the 81st annual celebration of Saviours' Day, which marks the birth of the faith's founder, W. Fard Muhammad.

The keynote address, titled "God will send saviours," capped a weekend of workshops focused on health, preparing for natural disasters and unidentified flying objects. The Nation of Islam believes in a UFO called "the wheel" or "the Mother Plane."

Farrakhan has described a 1985 religious experience in which he ascended into a flying saucer and heard the voice of Elijah Muhammad predicting historical events that came to pass.


Madoff to New York Magazine: Government a Ponzi scheme

Bernard Madoff
© Hiroko Masuike / Getty Images
On December 12, 2008, Bernald L. Madoff was arrested by federal agents accusing him of running a multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme, perhaps the largest in Wall Street's history.
Wall Street swindler Bernard Madoff said in a magazine interview published Sunday that new regulatory reform enacted after the recent national financial crisis is laughable and that the federal government is a Ponzi scheme.

"The whole new regulatory reform is a joke," Madoff said during a telephone interview with New York magazine in which he discussed his disdain for the financial industry and for its regulators.

The interview was published on the magazine's website Sunday night.

Madoff did an earlier New York Times interview in which he accused banks and hedge funds of being "complicit" in his Ponzi scheme to fleece people out of billions of dollars. He said they failed to scrutinize the discrepancies between his regulatory filings and other information.

He said in the New York magazine interview the Securities and Exchange Commission "looks terrible in this thing," and he said the "whole government is a Ponzi scheme."

A Ponzi, or pyramid, scheme is a scam in which people are persuaded to invest through promises of unusually high returns, with early investors paid their returns out of money put in by later investors.

A court-appointed trustee seeking to recover money on behalf of the victims of Madoff's massive Ponzi scheme has filed a lawsuit against his primary banker, JPMorgan Chase, alleging the bank had suspected something wrong in his operation for years. The bank has denied any wrongdoing.

Arrow Down

US: Senators Call For Aid, Arms for Libyan Provisional Government

The United States and its allies should recognize and arm a provisional government in Libya and also impose a no-fly zone that would prevent Libyan aircraft from attacking anti-government protesters there, two leading U.S. senators said Sunday.

Sens. John McCain, R-Arizona, and Joseph Lieberman, an independent from Connecticut who caucuses with the Democrats, told CNN's State of the Union that the Obama administration needs to do more to help protesters oust Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

"I think the world has to do more," Lieberman said. "I'd begin with the imposition of a no-fly zone, so that Gadhafi can't be attacking his own people from the air."

In addition, Lieberman said, "We've got to recognize the opposition provisional government as the legitimate government of Libya and that we ought to give that government certainly humanitarian assistance and military arms, not to go in on the ground ourselves, but give them the wherewithal to fight on behalf of the people of Libya against a really cruel dictator."

Both Lieberman and McCain stopped short of calling for U.S. forces to get involved. McCain added that the United States and allies should make clear that any foreign mercenaries backing Gadhafi in attacking the Libyan people would face a war crimes tribunal.

Both senators, speaking from Cairo, Egypt, said they understood the administration's concern over making statements or taking steps that could endanger American citizens in Libya, but they called the response so far insufficient.

Arrow Up

'Free Libya' Chants Heard in City Near Capital

© AP
Libyan anti-government protesters
With residents shouting "Free, free Libya," anti-government rebels who control this battle-scarred city nearest to the capital deployed tanks and anti-aircraft weapons Sunday to brace for an attack by troops loyal to Moammar Gadhafi. The Obama administration offered "any type of assistance" to Libyans seeking to oust the longtime leader.

Politicians in the opposition stronghold of Benghazi set up their first leadership council to manage day-to-day affairs, taking a step toward forming what could be an alternative to Gadhafi's regime.

In the capital Tripoli, where Gadhafi is still firmly in control, state banks began handing out the equivalent of $400 per family in a bid to shore up public loyalty.

"The Libyan people are fully behind me," Gadhafi defiantly told Serbian TV, even as about half of the country was turning against him and world leaders moved to isolate him. "A small group (of rebels) is surrounded ... and it will be dealt with."

Gadhafi has launched by far the bloodiest crackdown in a wave of anti-government uprisings sweeping the Arab world, the most serious challenge to his four decades in power. The United States, Britain and the U.N. Security Council all slapped sanctions on Libya this weekend.

A day after President Barack Obama branded Gadhafi an illegitimate ruler who must leave power immediately, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton kept up pressure for him to step down and "call off the mercenaries" and other troops that remain loyal to him.

"We are just at the beginning of what will follow Gadhafi. ... But we've been reaching out to many different Libyans who are attempting to organize in the east and as the revolution moves westward there as well," Clinton said. "I think it's way too soon to tell how this is going to play out, but we're going to be ready and prepared to offer any kind of assistance that anyone wishes to have from the United States."

Two U.S. senators said Washington should recognize and arm a provisional government in rebel-held areas of eastern Libya and impose a no-fly zone over the area - enforced by U.S. warplanes - to stop attacks by the regime.


Obama Declares National State of Emergency Over Libya

© Clean Technica
President Obama issued an executive order Friday evening that imposes immediate sanctions on Libyan ruler Muammar al Qaddafi, his sons and his accomplices in the slaughter of civilians. In a letter accompanying the order, Obama declared a national emergency over the situation.

"I have determined that the actions of Colonel Muammar Qaddafi, his government, and close associates, including extreme measures against the people of Libya, constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States. The order declares a national emergency to deal with this threat," Obama wrote in the letter to House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH).

The executive order itself condemns the "wanton violence against unarmed associates" perpetrated by Qaddafi, his sons, his government, and his close associates. Effective immediately, all U.S.-based assets of Qaddafi and his four sons are to be frozen and transactions intended to move those assets are prohibited. The order allows the measures to be expanded to include any member of the Libyan government who are determined to be complicit in Qaddafi's brutality.

Che Guevara

Libyan Security Forces Switch Sides as Gadhafi Hangs On

Libya protest
Embattled Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi seemed increasingly cornered Sunday as security forces defected to the opposition in a town near the capital and the United Nations Security Council voted for tough restrictions on and possible war crimes charges against the Libyan regime.

Former security forces said they had switched sides and joined the opposition in Zawiya, a town about 55 kilometers (35 miles) from the capital, Tripoli. Some buildings in Zawiya showed signs of damage, including a freshly burned-out police station.

CNN's Nic Robertson, on a government-organized trip to Zawiya, saw armed civilians taking defensive positions on rooftops to prepare for a possible effort by Gadhafi loyalists to retake the town.

About 2,000 people took part in an anti-government protest there, some standing atop tanks or holding anti-aircraft guns. They said they wanted the government overthrown, calling Gadhafi a "bloodsucker."


Venezuela: US fomenting violence in Libya


Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (R) gestures next to Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi (L), after decorating him with the Order of the Liberator, the nation's highest honour, in Porlamar, Margarita Island, in northwestern Venezuela, where a weekend summit of South American and African leaders took place, September 28, 2009.
Caracas, Venezuela - Venezuela's top diplomat on Thursday echoed Fidel Castro's accusation that Washington is fomenting unrest in Libya to justify an invasion to seize North African nation's oil reserves.

Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro claimed the United States is trying to create a movement inside Libya aimed at toppling Moammar Gadhafi.

Maduro did not condemn or defend the violent crackdown on Libyans participating in the popular uprising against Gadhafi's long rule.

But he questioned the veracity of media reports on the bloody uprising, which has crept closer to Gadhafi's stronghold in Tripoli.

"They are creating conditions to justify an invasion of Libya," Maduro said.

"Libya is going through difficult times, which should not be measured with information from imperial news agencies," Maduro added, referring to Western media.


Blasts claim 10 lives in Afghanistan

Three separate explosions have left at least ten people dead and dozens wounded in Afghanistan's Kandahar province, local officials say.

Two of the blasts occurred in a span of minutes during a "dog fighting contest" in Arghandab district at 12:00 p.m. local time on Sunday and killed eight civilians and two policemen, a Press TV correspondent reported.

According to the report, the injured people have been rushed to a local hospital.

The third blast rocked a convoy of tanks of US-led troops in another district of Kandahar province at 12:30 p.m. local time.

The Press TV correspondent further added that the foreign troops "suffered casualties" in the attack.

Witness also said that a number of US-led soldiers "were killed or wounded" in the bombing.


'Canadian spy detained in Afghanistan'

A Taliban spokesman has announced that its militants have detained a Canadian spy during their arrest operations in war-ravaged Afghanistan.

The spokesman said on Sunday that Rutherford Colin Mackenzie was arrested several days ago in Ghazni city while he was collecting secret information, a Press TV correspondent reported.

According to the spokesperson, there are documents, photographs and footage that confirm his espionage activities.