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Sat, 16 Feb 2019
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Stormtrooper

France launches airstrikes against rebels in Chad to prop up puppet dictator

macron deby chad

Macron and Deby holding hands as they spend Christmas together
French politicians have defended a series of airstrikes in Chad targeting a rebel convoy this week, saying it respected international law and supported a legitimate government. Chad's President Idriss Deby said the convoy of "mercenaries" had been completely destroyed with no loss of life or damage to equipment for the government.

"France never intervenes - even if a country's authorities ask - just to target people who are against the government," said Thomas Gassilloud, an MP with the ruling LREM party and member of the commission for national defence and armed forces.


Comment: Oh no, never. Except when they target French people who are against the government.


"We decided on our intervention on the basis of a formal request by the Chadian authorities with strict respect for international law," Gassilloud told RFI's service Afrique.


Comment: Funny how when Russia cites this for defending Assad, the French globalists howl about how illegal it is.


Megaphone

'Space is not your property!' Beijing blasts US report on China & Russia 'weaponizing' space

NASA/Handout via Reuters
A new US intelligence report portraying Moscow and Beijing as trying to bring warfare into the heavens has drawn the ire of China, which insists that space is not Washington's "private property."

"I want to make it clear that outer space belongs to all mankind. It is not exclusively owned by any one country and especially not the private property of the US," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said, referring to the latest paper by the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).

Hua slammed the "unwarranted and utterly baseless comments" in the DIA report, saying China stands for the peaceful use of space and opposes its militarization.

"For many years," the spokeswoman stated, "China, Russia and other countries have been working hard and trying to reach an international legal instrument to fundamentally prevent the weaponization of or an arms race in outer space."

War Whore

Hypocritical US senator casually threatens Russia with war if it opens military base 'in our hemisphere'

venezuela
© Reuters / Carlos Garcia Rawlins
The US staked a claim on half the world, as Senate Armed Services Committee chair Jim Inhofe said Washington might have to intervene in Venezuela if Russia dares set up a military base not just there, but "in our hemisphere."

"I think that it could happen," Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) told a group of reporters on Tuesday. "You've got a guy down there that is killing everybody. You could have him put together a base that Russia would have on our hemisphere. And if those things happen, it may be to the point where we'll have to intervene with troops and respond."

Should Russia dare encroach on the US' neck of the woods, Inhofe said: "we have to take whatever action necessary to stop them from doing that."

As opposition leader Juan Guaido vies for power, the Russian government has stuck by President Nicolas Maduro. Russia has not, however, promised military aid to Maduro, and Russian diplomat Alexander Shchetinin said on Monday that Venezuela has not requested military aid from Moscow.

Comment: The good senator is tilting at windmills. Russia won't be opening a military base anywhere in the West because it has no desires to rule the world. It's the US that thinks it rules the world, not Russia.


Arrow Down

Antiwar president? Trump threatens to veto effort to end US military support for Saudi war on Yemen

Trump/USAF
© REUTERS/Leah Millis; Mario Anzuoni
President Trump during SOTU address • USAF
The Trump administration threatened on Monday to veto an effort in the U.S. Congress to end U.S. military support for the Saudi Arabia-led coalition in the war in Yemen, continuing a stand-off with lawmakers over policy toward the kingdom.

Democrats and Republicans re-introduced the war powers resolution two weeks ago as a way to send a strong message to Riyadh both about the humanitarian disaster in Yemen and condemn the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The administration said the resolution was inappropriate because U.S. forces had provided aircraft refueling and other support in the Yemen conflict, not combat troops. It also said the measure would harm relationships in the region and hurt the U.S. ability to prevent the spread of violent extremism.

Comment: 'Tis all a show. Don't think for a moment that Washington cares about the murder of Khashoggi or about the war crimes in Yemen. This is all a game of setup and knock down in order to put pressure on Saudi Arabia for the things Washington really wants.


Star of David

Are boycotts under the same constitutional rights as freedom of speech?

BDS sign
© Rebel News
The ACLU thinks boycotts are speech. So do some federal courts. They think all of the anti-BDS legislation being adopted by state governments of late is unconstitutional. They're wrong. Although boycotts may be symbolic of an idea or a principle, or may contain some latent political message, almost all actions can be understood in this way. All actions can't be constitutionally protected free expression, however.

This is to say nothing about the wisdom of the many anti-BDS state laws currently cropping up all over America, which prevent government contractors, affiliates, and those receiving state funds or support, from boycotting Israel. It should be noted that these state governments cannot discriminate against those who merely advocate for boycotting Israel or Israeli goods. Nor can they demand that contractors or like parties sign loyalty oaths to Israel, or anything to this effect. Such laws would be clear First Amendment violations.

Even if, like myself, you don't personally support the BDS movement or its goals, it is a pretty essential liberty to be able to spend one's money in the way one sees fit and according to one's own conscience. These state laws are therefore unthinkable, as far as I'm concerned. Curtailing the basic economic rights of Americans, including the right to boycott, is simply not the way to go about defending Israel or her interests.

Comment: "Economic boycotts are not a liberal or moral response to speech one doesn't like." Neither is labeling free speech as anti-Semitism and prosecuting for it. This is the slip knot the Israeli lobbies want us to believe. Congress, of all entities, has fallen for this smoke and mirror ploy. Not only has the Israel lobby falsely labeled (libeled) anyone with a diverse opinion of Israel, it has doubled down to make it a crime. They have constructed a layer of protection to safeguard 'their' freedom of speech with consequential legislation to boot. Cleverly self-preserving and outwardly deviously destructive.


Robot

Trump's AI order may lack funding but not the target: China

SenseVideo Recognition
© Gilles Sabrie/Bloomberg via Getty Images
SenseVideo pedestrian and vehicle recognition system at the company's showroom in Beijing on June 15, 2018.
Almost two years after China first laid out its plan to become the world leader in artificial intelligence by 2030, the United States on Monday released its own playbook.

The document, an executive order from President Donald Trump, explained his administration's views on developing artificial intelligence, but left open a major question: Where's the money?

"Money talks when it comes to government priorities, and new money actually drives priorities." said R. David Edelman, a former special assistant to President Barack Obama for technology policy.

Trump's executive order, which did not include any new funding for AI research, comes amid mounting tension over China's ambitious efforts. China in 2017 laid out a national plan to try to develop AI technology, an ambition that was likened to the Apollo missions to the moon and set off anxiety within the U.S. as the Trump White House was silent.

"It's kind of a new arms race," said Theresa Payton, chief information officer under President George W. Bush. But AI isn't just about weaponry. The technology is seen by many policymakers, technologists and scholars as having a key role in the future of business, governance and just about any other part of human life, posing difficult questions about the tradeoffs between unrestricted growth and the need to keep pace with an international rival.

Comment: And who oversees the AI? Precisely those who would strip humanity of its essence.
See also: Pentagon's first AI strategy requires help from tech companies to keep pace with China and Russia


Robot

Pentagon's first AI strategy requires help from tech companies to keep pace with China and Russia

AI face
© Getty Images/Colin Anderson
The Pentagon has issued its first AI strategy, where it pleads with tech giants to help boost military capabilities and catch up with Russia and China in developing artificial intelligence for military purposes.

An unclassified summary of the strategy calls to rapidly incorporate AI technologies into the military's decision-making and operations "to reduce risk to fielded forces and generate military advantage." Also, the Pentagon's strategists believe AI "can help us better maintain our equipment, reduce operational costs, and improve readiness."

The 17-page paper is loose in wording and full of lengthy sentences hailing the US military's reliance on innovation. Working your way through it won't help you to get a know-how of building a terminator or the like. Joking aside, one part of it does provide a few tip-offs about what the strategy is actually aimed at.

"Other nations, particularly China and Russia, are making significant investments in AI for military purposes." In an almost 'usual' style of bashing, the Pentagon says that Beijing and Moscow "threaten to erode our technological and operational advantages and destabilize the free and open international order."


Comment: See also: Trump's AI order may lack funding but not the target: China


Video

YouTube to determine what 'conspiracy' is and stop recommending these videos

YouTubeCensored
© barenakedislam.com
While the evolution of Google's YouTube from a free expression platform into something entirely different has been underway for a while, it just took another step in a very short-sighted and restrictive direction. NBC News reports:
YouTube has announced that it will no longer recommend videos that "come close to" violating its community guidelines, such as conspiracy or medically inaccurate videos...Chaslot said that YouTube's fix to its recommendations AI will have to include getting people to videos with truthful information and overhauling the current system it uses to recommend videos.
There's a lot to unpack here so let's get started. First, it appears YouTube has announced the creation of a new bucket when it comes to content uploaded to the site. It's no longer just videos consistent with company guidelines and those that aren't, but there's now a category for "conspiracy or medically inaccurate videos." This is a massive responsibility, which neither YouTube or anyone else seems fit to be judge and jury. In other words, YouTube is saying it's comfortable deciding what is "conspiracy" and what isn't. Which brings up a really important question.

Comment: The choke chain is tightening around our freedoms, choices, creativity - now to be left to a specifically programmed machine to decide and cull our options and preferences. Do we need gatekeepers? Mass surveillance? Mind control? How did we ever live this long without it.


Star of David

Israeli minister: Intra-Palestinian talks in Russia a 'participation mistake'

Yisrael Katz
© shutterstock
Minister of Transportation & Intelligence Yisrael Katz
Israeli Minister of Transportation and Intelligence Yisrael Katz has called the ongoing intra-Palestinian meeting in Moscow, in which Hamas, a group Israel considers to be a terrorist organization, is participating, a mistake. Katz told journalists:
"The conference with the participation of Hamas is a mistake. Hamas is a radical Islamist terrorist organization that refuses any political settlement, despite the fact that Israel left the Gaza Strip, moving beyond the 'green line' [internationally recognized border]. Russia, a country that is fighting radical Islamist terror everywhere, is making a mistake by giving legitimacy to this organization."
The third intra-Palestinian meeting in Moscow started on Monday and will last through Wednesday. The negotiating parties were received by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Tuesday. The summit is being held at the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow.

Mousa Mohammed Abu Marzook, the deputy chief of the Political Bureau of the Hamas, heads the movement's delegation at the Moscow talks, which is devoted to finding ways to overcome the ongoing intra-Palestinian split.

Comment: It counters what Israel is trying to achieve - divide and conquer.


Star of David

AIPAC: Fundraising campaign launched on the back of Ilhan Omar's 'anti-Semitic' tweets

AIPAC
© Guatemala Presidency/Handout via REUTERS
American Israel Public Affairs Committee AIPAC Policy Conference in Washington.
Pro-Israel lobby group AIPAC is apparently trying to cash in on the controversy caused by Ilhan Omar's tweets in which she slammed the overbearing power the Israeli lobby has on US lawmakers. But some say it's an ill-timed effort.

In a document, said to be a copy of the fundraising email that has circulated on social media, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) accused Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar of perpetuating "old anti-Semitic stereotypes" by suggesting that Washington sides with Israel "only because of Jewish money."

"Aside from being offensive, divisive and ill-informed, the congresswoman's assentation are plain wrong," the letter reads.

AIPAC stated that it was proud that it enjoys support across the aisles and called on its members to help it bolster "bipartisan efforts in support of the shared values" with a donation of $25, $50, $100 or more, according to Haaretz.

Comment: See also: