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New Evidence Links Cisco to Jailing and Torture of Chinese

Liu Xiaobo and his wife Liu Xia
Nobel Peace Prize 2010 winner Liu Xiaobo is serving an 11-year sentence. Here he is pictured with his wife Liu Xia.
A human rights group suing Cisco for aiding the tracking and torture of people in China claims it has new evidence proving the tech giant tailored its technology to specifically enable these abuses.

If accepted by the court, the revelations, including that Cisco trained Chinese officials in how to surveil net users, could prove damning for the company, which has always claimed it has done no more than sell stock standard technology to the regime.

The Human Rights Law Foundation, based in Washington, filed its suit against Cisco in May under a law that allows US companies to be sued for violations of human rights committed abroad.

The suit accuses Cisco, one of the world's largest technology companies, of aiding the Chinese government in monitoring and jailing members of the banned Falun Gong by helping to develop the "Golden Shield Project".

Gear

"With Immediate Effect"

Gold bullion
© WordPress

Holy Red Screen, Batman! If you haven't seen the news, the Swiss National Bank has just announced that it is putting a ceiling on the franc's appreciation against the euro... effectively abandoning its economic sovereignty and putting its future in the hands of woefully corrupt and incompetent bureaucrats.

On the news, the franc fell off a cliff, dropping almost 10% INSTANTLY. Gold priced in Swiss francs jumped from 1497 to 1620 per troy ounce, all in about 45 seconds.

Precious metals are now all alone as the only forms of sound money that are truly safe havens.

Just 6-weeks ago on July 27th, in a letter entitled "Should I buy gold at its all-time high", I wrote:

"Even stronger currencies like the Swiss franc have limits to their appreciation. At some point, the Swiss National Bank will impose capital controls to thwart the rise of its currency. . . [Y]ou'll probably feel like a sucker for not buying gold at $1600 when you still had the chance."

Since then gold has soared roughly 20%, and as of this morning, the SNB has imposed capital controls to thwart the rise of its currency.

This is just the beginning.

Pistol

Obama Orders Sweeping Sanctions & Regime Change in Syria Without Congress

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© Unknown
Once again President Obama has used the authority vested in him in the International Emergency Economic Powers Act and the National Emergencies Act to impose sweeping sanctions against a sovereign nation without Congressional approval.

On August 18th, 2011, Obama signed Executive Order 13582: Blocking Property of the Government of Syria and Prohibiting Certain Transactions With Respect to Syria, which authorizes the seizure of all Syrian-owned property and interests in property in the United States. It also bans exports of U.S. services to Syria, the import of petroleum from Syria, and any new investment in Syria or those who support them.

The following actions are now prohibited:
(a) new investment in Syria by a United States person, wherever located;

(b) the exportation, reexportation, sale, or supply, directly or indirectly, from the United States, or by a United States person, wherever located, of any services to Syria;

(c) the importation into the United States of petroleum or petroleum products of Syrian origin;

(d) any transaction or dealing by a United States person, wherever located, including purchasing, selling, transporting, swapping, brokering, approving, financing, facilitating, or guaranteeing, in or related to petroleum or petroleum products of Syrian origin; and

(e) any approval, financing, facilitation, or guarantee by a United States person, wherever located, of a transaction by a foreign person where the transaction by that foreign person would be prohibited by this section if performed by a United States person or within the United States.

MIB

Gibson Guitar raid part of government effort to extinguish American workforce, outsource remaining jobs to foreign countries

Gibson guitars

As a followup to our report about the US government's recent illegal raid of Gibson Guitars Corp., a major US based manufacturer of musical instruments, Gibson's CEO Henry Juszkiewicz has openly announced that the US government actually advised him in a pleading that if he simply were to move his workforce to Madagascar, he could avoid his current quandary entirely.

This shocking, written admission by government agents, which was expounded upon by Juszkiewicz himself during a recent interview on KMJ AM's The Chris Daniel Show, clearly illustrates what the federal government is up to these days. By targeting a US-based company with a US-based labor force -- which is an amazing rarity in today's globalized world, by the way -- for no legitimate or legal reason, it is obvious that an ulterior motive is at work.

"Mr. Juszkiewicz, did an agent of the US government suggest to you that your problems would go away if you used Madagascar labor instead of American labor?" Daniel is quoted as asking Juszkiewicz in a recent Redstate report. After responding that the suggestion was, indeed, made in a written pleading, Juszkiewicz confirmed insinuations by the government that if Gibson would simply outsource its labor force, Juszkiewicz's problems would "go away."

R2-D2

Best of the Web: David Seaton: Will This All End with a Bang or a Whimper?

U.S. corporate profits and efficiency are getting absurd. On Friday we saw record quarterly profits of $1,450 billion, making up a record share of GDP at 10.1%. We're also at record corporate efficiency of $15,278.72 -- up 22.3% from last year (...). That last one says it all. Rampant job cuts and salary cuts, with new responsibilities for old workers, during the recession turned corporations into profit-making machines. Stimulative policies from the government and the Federal Reserve helped plenty. New technology also helps with efficiency. Unfortunately there are no signs that corporations are turning revenue into jobs. Business Insider

Employment

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The problem with US manufacturing is not that it has been shrinking - despite the "offshoring" of textile and electronics manufacturing to China, US manufacturing output rose by 3.9 per cent a year between 1997 and 2007. However productivity grew 6.8 per cent annually in the same period, so millions of jobs were lost. If manufacturing carries along the same path, McKinsey estimates that it could shed another 2.3m jobs by 2020, while the economy needs to create 21m more jobs to return to full employment. The mini-recovery in manufacturing jobs - 164,000 were added in the six months to April - recently stalled. John Gapper - Financial Times

Over time, advanced economies will need to invest in human capital, skills and social safety nets to increase productivity and enable workers to compete, be flexible and thrive in a globalized economy. The alternative is - like in the 1930s - unending stagnation, depression, currency and trade wars, capital controls, financial crisis, sovereign insolvencies, and massive social and political instability. Nouriel Roubini - Project Syndicate

MIB

'American-Israeli FBI employee gave tapped conversations to liberal Israeli blogger out of fears of Israeli attack on Iran'

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© Marc Israel Sellem
'NY Times': American-Israeli FBI employee gave tapped conversations to liberal Israeli blogger out of fears of Israeli attack on Iran.

A dual US-Israeli citizen working as an FBI translator was sentenced to 20 months in prison after he was caught passing on recorded conversations from FBI wiretaps of the Israeli embassy in Washington, the New York Times reported Monday. The report brings to light US efforts to spy on its allies.

The documents that were leaked included conversations with "US supporters of Israel and at least one member of Congress," the report said.

According to the Times, Shamai K. Liebowitz, a lawyer who was working as a Hebrew language translator for the FBI, passed on the sensitive information out of fears that Israel may have been planning an attack on Iran, and was aggressive in its influence of the US Congress and public opinion.

Magnify

US: Ex US internal-security overlord bigs up cyber menace

lobsterxray
© The Register

Chertoff fears 'dangerous intrusions'

Cyberattacks are the top threat to future national security, according to the former head of the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Michael Chertoff.

It's well known that Chertoff, who is now the co-founder and managing principal of private security consultancy the Chertoff Group, has a healthy respect for the power of technology. Investments by the DHS during his tenure there included SBInet (known here at The Reg as the Eye-o-Sauron stare-towers); handheld lobster spy-beam scanners; and Project Hostile Intent, a non-invasive mind probe to separate the dastardly from the law-abiding.

However, Chertoff now worries that power will be used more and more often to attack financial and political systems, as we've already seen happen in Estonia and Georgia.

In April 2007, websites of the Estonian parliament, banks, ministries and the media were the victims of a number of cyberattacks while the country rowed with Russia over Soviet-era war memorials in its capital Tallinn. The following year, websites in Georgia were attacked before and during the military action with Russia. Russia denied being behind either attack and experts were unable to come up with the culprits, highlighting the difficulty of tracing many cybercrimes.

Camera

UK: Hurry up with webcams in courts, says Sky News boss

Media chief feels justice system needs more credibility

Streaming trials on the internet will help people have confidence in the British justice system, Sky News boss John Ryley claimed in an open letter to the Justice Secretary today.

Justice Secretary Ken Clarke promised to open up British courts to cameras eight months ago in a meeting with Sky, the BBC and ITN - but as yet only dealings in the Supreme Court are filmed and published online.

John Ryley, Head of Sky News, has decided to hustle Clarke along with an open letter where he states that:

"I believe that if television cameras were allowed to broadcast the remarks made by judges when they pass sentence, it would go a long way to making the process more transparent and would dramatically improve public confidence in the system."

Ryley adds a claim that Sky News's Supreme Court Live feed, which started in May 2011, gets 90,000 visitors a day. (Though obviously only when the court is in session - it's currently off till October when the legal term starts again.)

Laptop

Diginotar hackers targeted CIA, Mossad and MI6

Dutch government identifies over 500 rogue certificates

The Dutch government has revoked trust in Diginotar and released a list of over 500 fraudulent certificates issued by the hackers who broke into the company's infrastructure last month. Some of them are for the domains of the CIA, Mossad and the British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS).

The Diginotar breach was discovered a week ago when a rogue *.google.com certificate issued by the certificate authority (CA) was used in attacks against Gmail users in Iran. The company admitted suffering an intrusion back in July which resulted in fraudulent certificates being issued for a number of domains.

The browser vendors reacted promptly by removing the Diginotar CA root certificate from their products, but kept the one for Diginotar's PKIoverheid sub-CA, which was used to sign Dutch government certificates.

The investigation into the incident is ongoing, but the security lapses identified are so serious that the Dutch minister of internal affairs announced in an urgent press conference at 1:15am on Saturday that the PKIoverheid sub-CA should no longer be trusted either.

Ever since the company's first public statement about the incident, the security community has wondered how many rogue certificates were issued and what domains were targeted. The Dutch government has now shed some light on this by releasing a list of 531 fraudulent certificates associated with Diginotar.

Bad Guys

Foreign Ministry officials admit: Turkey citizens routinely humiliated at Israel's airport

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© David BacharSecurity staff questioning Israeli Arab passengers at Ben-Gurion Airport
Dozens of Israelis say they were humiliated at Istanbul airport, forced to strip to their underwear on Monday; Foreign Ministry officials say humiliation of Turkish citizens happens on regular basis in Israel.

Foreign Ministry officials told Haaretz on Monday that over the past year, there were dozens of complaints on the part of Turkish citizens who claimed they were humiliated by Israeli security personnel at Ben-Gurion airport.

The officials also said that almost every Turkish citizen who arrives at Ben-Gurion airport undergoes a routine procedure of extensive, humiliating examinations that also include undressing to one's underwear.

"Turkish citizens are always separated from the rest of the passengers at the airport," said a Foreign Ministry official.

"When their luggage is thoroughly examined and they undergo extensive questioning they understand it comes from security needs, but when they get to the strip search part it breaks them and they are humiliated. Many Turkish businesspeople and tourists have complained about this in the past. This humiliation ceremony of Turkish citizens is a routine matter."