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Chess

Misinformation Campaign Targets USA TODAY Reporters Investigating Pentagon Propaganda Contractors

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© theatlanticwire.comPentagon Propaganda Campaign Targeted Reporters Asking About Propaganda
Washington - A USA TODAY reporter and editor investigating Pentagon propaganda contractors have themselves been subjected to a propaganda campaign of sorts, waged on the Internet through a series of bogus websites.

Fake Twitter and Facebook accounts have been created in their names, along with a Wikipedia entry and dozens of message board postings and blog comments. Websites were registered in their names.

The timeline of the activity tracks USA TODAY's reporting on the military's "information operations" program, which spent hundreds of millions of dollars on marketing campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan - campaigns that have been criticized even within the Pentagon as ineffective and poorly monitored.

Grey Alien

Best of the Web: "They Live", the Weird Movie With a Powerful Message

'They Live' is a science-fiction movie from the Eighties that features aliens, a WWF wrestler and a whole lot of sunglasses. What's not to like? While, at first glance, the movie appears to be a bunch of nonsense, 'They Live' actually communicates a powerful message about the elite and its use of mass media to control the masses. Is the movie describing what we call the Illuminati? This article looks at the deeper meaning of John Carpenter's strange but fascinating movie 'They Live'.
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Bomb

EU official says Sanctions Imposed on Iran oil may be Reviewed

iran oil
© Press TVFile photo shows gas flares from an Iranain oil production platform.
A senior European Union official says the bloc may in the next two months review the sanctions imposed on the Islamic Republic's oil industry, which are scheduled to take effect in July.

"The situation in oil markets is being kept under close review," Reuters quoted the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, as saying on Friday.

European countries including Greece are facing difficulty finding alternative suppliers, he added.

Tehran decided to cut crude exports to certain European countries after EU foreign ministers agreed on January 23 to ban oil imports from Iran and freeze the assets of the country's Central Bank across the EU.

Comment: Economic reality of EU assisting US/Israeli warmongering bites?


Display

Introducing CISPA: Even More Censorship Than SOPA

cybersecurity graphic
© n/a
First, there were ACTA, then PIPA, then SOPA, now there's CISPA, the Cyber Intelligence and Sharing Protection Act, the worst of all.

Though it has not met yet blasts of criticism as the first three cyberspying acts, US lawmakers have already come up with another authoritarian bill that would give them carte blanche to spy on the web in the name of cybersecurity. Like a bad rash, these bills keep coming back, only worse and more irritating than the preceding and nixed ones.

H.R. 3523, a piece of legislation with the title Cyber Intelligence and Sharing Protection Act, has a very unholy downside. It's been crafted under the ruse of being a necessary tool in our eternal war against cyber attacks. But the fuzzy verbiage packed within the pages of the law could give Congress the clout to dance around existing exemptions to online privacy laws and basically monitor, censor and stop any online communication that it believes to be disruptive to the government or private parties.

Critics have already jumped on CISPA for the power it seemingly will give to any federal entity that claims it is threatened by online interactions, but unlike the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP ACTS that were tossed on the Capital Building floor after very successful online campaigns to defeat them, widespread knowledge of what this latest brainchild "law" will do has not reared its ugly head yet, at least not to the same degree.

But Kendall Burman of the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) told Russia Today (RT.com) that Congress is currently looking at a slew of bills that could eventually become law, but for the persistence of the groups that openly advocate an open Internet. It's amazing how eager Congress and the NSA are to spy in any way possible on the American people. We are the new enemy, it seems. Burman warns that provisions in CISPA are real reasons to worry what the realities could turn out to be if it ends up on the desk of our ever-vigilant President Obama. So far CISPA has had its coming-out party, introduced, referred and reported by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and expects to put to a vote in the coming weeks.

Eye 1

Pity Ploy: Sarkozy Plays Contrite to Gain Last Minute Votes

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© UnknownNicolas Sarkozy is expected to gain 25.5% of the vote in the first-round vote, according to the latest opinion polls.
Nicolas Sarkozy apologised for his mis-steps Friday, the final day of campaigning in France's presidential election, while his main rival Francois Hollande was increasingly confident of victory.

The latest polls ahead of Sunday's first round point to a resounding win for the Socialist in the May 6 run-off against Sarkozy, dogged by criticism his flashy and overbearing style lowered the standing of France's head of state.

"Perhaps the mistake I made at the start of my mandate is not understanding the symbolic dimension of the president's role and not being solemn enough in my acts," a contrite Sarkozy told RTL radio.

"A mistake for which I would like to apologise or explain myself and which I will not make again," he said, insisting: "Now, I know the job."

Telephone

Developments in British Phone-Hacking Scandal

Rupert Murdoch
© PANews of the world, Rupert Murdoch leaving News International
Developments in a phone-hacking scandal involving British newspapers owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.:

November 2005: News of the World royal reporter Clive Goodman writes story saying Prince William has a knee injury. Buckingham Palace complaint prompts police inquiry.

August 2006: Goodman arrested along with private investigator Glenn Mulcaire for suspected hacking into voicemails of royal officials.

January 2007: Goodman jailed for four months; Mulcaire given six-month sentence. News of the World editor Andy Coulson resigns but insists he had not known about the hacking.

May 2007: Conservative Party leader David Cameron taps Coulson to be his media adviser.

July 2009: Coulson tells parliamentary committee he never "condoned use of phone hacking."

September 2009: Rebekah Brooks, former editor of the News of the World and its sister paper The Sun, named chief executive of News International, News Corp.'s British arm.

February 2010: Parliamentary committee finds no evidence that Coulson knew about phone hacking but states it's "inconceivable" that no one apart from royal correspondent Goodman knew about it.

Rocket

North Korea Threatens War as Seoul Unveils Missile

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© Agence France-PresseFile photo shows missiles displayed at the war museum in Seoul. North Korea demanded Thursday that South Korea apologise for what it called insults during major anniversary festivities, or face a "sacred war", as Seoul unveiled a new missile to deter its neighbour
North Korea demanded Thursday that South Korea apologise for what it called insults during major anniversary festivities, or face a "sacred war", as Seoul unveiled a new missile to deter its neighbour.

Regional tensions have risen since Pyongyang went ahead with a long-range rocket launch last Friday, defying international calls to desist.

The event was to have been a centrepiece of celebrations marking the 100th anniversary Sunday of the "Day of the Sun", the birthday of Kim Il-Sung who founded the communist nation and the dynasty which still rules it.

But the rocket, which the North said was designed to launch a satellite, disintegrated after some two minutes of flight.

"The puppet regime of traitors must apologise immediately for their grave crime of smearing our Day of Sun festivities," said a government statement on Pyongyang's official news agency.

Otherwise, it said, the North Korean people and military "will release their volcanic anger and stage a sacred war of retaliation to wipe out traitors on this land".

Eye 1

CISPA: Say Hello To Big Brother


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Julian Assange's lawyer 'prevented from boarding flight at Heathrow'

Jennifer Robinson, a lawyer for the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
© Patrick Semansky/APJennifer Robinson, a lawyer for the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
Jennifer Robinson says she was told she was on a 'watch list' and would need official approval to return to her native Australia


A lawyer for the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, has said she was stopped at Heathrow airport and told she was on a watch list requiring official approval before she could return to her native Australia.

Jennifer Robinson said a member of airport security told her she "must have done something controversial" and that they would have to contact the Australian high commission in London before letting her on her flight.

The Australian human rights lawyer was later allowed on to a plane bound for Sydney, where she is due to speak at the Commonwealth Law Conference on Friday.

Australia's department of foreign affairs said it was not aware of any restrictions on Robinson's travel and added that its high commission in London had no record of receiving a call from the British authorities about her movements.

Stormtrooper

The inconvenient truth the Pentagon would prefer we didn't see

The US commander in Afghanistan, General John Allen
© Massoud Hossaini/AFP/Getty ImagesThe US commander in Afghanistan, General John Allen, has promised an inquiry into the photos published by the LA Times.
It is not photographs of US soldiers mocking Afghan insurgents' bodies that incites violence, but the plain fact of US occupation

The LA Times released new photos Wednesday of US soldiers posing in a celebratory manner with the corpses of dead Afghan suicide bombers. The photos were provided by a soldier from the 82nd Airborne division who felt that they revealed a "breakdown in leadership and discipline", with the hope that the photos would force the Army to correct this situation.

However, US military officials requested the LA Times not publish any of the photos. The Pentagon statement argued that the photos "do not represent the character and professionalism of the great majority of our troops in Afghanistan" and that the photos "have the potential to indict" all of our troops in Afghanistan "in the minds of local Afghans, inciting violence and perhaps causing needless casualties".