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Fri, 27 Jan 2023
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Bono and Bill Gates-Backed Global Health Charity Exposed as a Fraud

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© Activist Post
What institutions can you trust these days with your donations? The Associated Press reported today that the $21.7 billion Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is a fraud where at least two-thirds of the funds were "pocketed," and donated medicines were sold on the black market for profit.

The prestigious development fund is backed by celebrities like Bono, politicians like French president Sarkozy, and a cool $150 million from Bill and Melinda Gates. The AP wrote, "The fund has been a darling of the power set that will hold the World Economic Forum in the Swiss mountain village of Davos this week."

Although many of the contributors to this fund likely had good intentions for their donation, it seems that funds of this size are too-big-to-succeed and are ripe for corruption. The fund spokesman, Jon Liden, said, "We would contend that we do not have any corruption problems that are significantly different in scale or nature to any other international financing institution."

Light Sabers

U.S. Can't Link Accused Army Private to Assange

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© BradleyManning.org/European Pressphoto Agency
Army Specialist Bradley Manning is suspected of leaking thousands of Iraq War documents to Wikileaks.
Military also denies allegations that Bradley Manning is being mistreated

U.S. military officials tell NBC News that investigators have been unable to make any direct connection between a jailed army private suspected with leaking secret documents and Julian Assange, founder of the whistleblowing website WikiLeaks.

The officials say that while investigators have determined that Manning had allegedly unlawfully downloaded tens of thousands of documents onto his own computer and passed them to an unauthorized person, there is apparently no evidence he passed the files directly to Assange, or had any direct contact with the controversial WikiLeaks figure.

Assange, an Australian national, is under house arrest at a British mansion near London, facing a Swedish warrant seeking his extradition for questioning on charges of rape. Assange has denied the allegations.

WikiLeaks' release of secret diplomatic cables last year caused a diplomatic stir and laid bare some of the most sensitive U.S. dealings with governments around the world. It also prompted an American effort to stifle WikiLeaks by pressuring financial institutions to cut off the flow of money to the organization.

Light Saber

Peru recognizes Palestinian State

Peruvian Foreign Minister Jose Antonio Garcia Belaunde
© unknown
Peruvian Foreign Minister Jose Antonio Garcia Belaunde
Peru said on Monday it had recognized a Palestinian state, joining a growing number of Latin American countries in making an endorsement the United States has called premature.

Israel has warned that declarations by Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Bolivia and Ecuador, among others, could undermine the Middle East peace process.

Peruvian Foreign Minister Jose Antonio Garcia Belaunde did not specify if Peru recognized the Palestine state along borders that existed before 1967.

"Palestine is recognized as a free and sovereign state," he said on RPP radio.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas thanked Brazil several weeks ago for allowing his nation to open its first embassy in the Americas and said other countries were following suit.

Palestinian authorities are hoping for a diplomatic domino effect to back their claim for a state in all of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Israel disputes the Palestinian claim on all the West Bank and East Jerusalem, land it captured from Jordan in a 1967 war and has extensively settled.

Mr. Potato

Court throws Rahm off the Chicago mayoral ballot

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An appellate court panel ruled by a vote of 2-1 on Monday that former Obama administration chief of staff Rahm Emanuel may not run for mayor of Chicago.

The high-powered Democrat, who was the leading fundraiser in the race, was not officially a resident of Chicago in time for the registration deadline, his opponents argued. In previous challenges to his candidacy, Emanuel convinced the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners and a judge in Cook County that he'd met residency requirements.

While Emanuel did own a home in Chicago, it was rented out to tenants who'd renewed their lease just days before outgoing Chicago Mayor Richard Daley said he would not seek reelection. When Rahm announced his intent to run, the couple said they wouldn't be moving.

Stormtrooper

Tunisian police use teargas to disperse protesters

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© Christophe Ena/AP
Protesters burn a photo of former Tunisian president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali and his wife Leila during a demonstration in Tunis
Demonstrators gathered at prime minister's office as part of campaign to remove government linked to ousted president

Tunisian police today used teargas on Monday to try to disperse protesters who gathered at the prime minister's office as part of a campaign to remove a government linked to the ousted president, Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali.

Reuters witnesses saw the protesters, most of whom came to the capital from marginalised rural areas, surge into the compound area by the office and break several windows in the finance ministry building.

More than a week after the prime minister, Mohamed Ghannouchi, took the reins of an interim coalition following the overthrow of Ben Ali, he and other former loyalists of the feared ruling party face mounting pressure to step down.

Alarm Clock

Mobile Prison Guard Towers Coming to a Walmart near You!

Why are 'tactical platforms' being installed at Walmarts in the USA?


Handcuffs

British intelligence agencies go to supreme court over ruling on secret evidence

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© Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images
Binyam Mohamed: MI5 and MI6 have expressed alarm over their long-running dispute with high court judges over pressure to disclose their involvement in the abuse he suffered
Guardian contests attempt by MI5 and MI6 to ban disclosure of intelligence-related information in British courts

MI5 and MI6 will argue in a test case before the supreme court tomorrow that in future no intelligence gathered abroad, even if initially obtained through torture, should ever be disclosed in a British court.

Last year an appeal court dismissed what it described as an attempt to undermine a fundamental principle of common law: that a litigant must see and hear the evidence used against him or her.

Now the security and intelligence agencies are challenging that ruling in an unprecedented case. The Guardian, the Times, the BBC, and the human rights groups Liberty and Justice will argue before the country's most senior judges that if the agencies get their way, the right to a fair trial will be eroded, while public confidence in decisions taken by the courts will be diminished.

Bulb

Russia Recognizes Palestine

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Jericho, West Bank - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev recognized Palestine as an independent state during a visit to Jericho.

Medvedev said since 1988 Moscow has recognized the need for a Palestinian state during his visit Tuesday to the Palestinian city. He said everyone including Israel will benefit from its establishment, Ynetnews.com said Wednesday.

"The Russian position hasn't changed, as I've told the president," Medvedev said. "Russia made its choice long ago, at the end of the '80s. We supported and will support the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to create its own state, which is independent, territorially integral and with a capital in East Jerusalem," The Jerusalem Post quoted Medvedev as telling a news conference.

Israeli government officials told the English-language daily Medvedev refrained from explicitly calling for a Palestinian state along the 1967 borders. They said prior to the visit in Jericho, Israeli officials had contacted the Russian delegation and had received assurances there would be no change in Moscow's position, the newspaper said.

Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat welcomed Medvedev's statement, calling it "an historic move to make the Palestinians proud for a very long time."

Bell

U.S. state bankruptcy bill imminent, Gingrich says

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© Unknown
  • Bill would make it easier to renege pension obligations
  • Worries about need for state bailout loom over Congress
  • States, investors unhappy with possibility
Legislation that would allow U.S. states to file for bankruptcy will likely be introduced in Congress within the next month, Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House of Representatives and a powerful Republican party figure, told Reuters on Friday.

Although Gingrich, considered responsible for the "Republican Revolution" of the 1990's, is no longer in office, he has deep ties to Congress and is frequently named as a potential presidential contender in 2012.

For months he has championed letting states file for bankruptcy in order to handle their long-term budget problems despite resistance from states and investors in the $2.8 trillion municipal bond market.

"We're faced with the danger that the states are going to try to show up and say to Washington: You have to give us money," Gingrich said. "And I think we have to have an alternative that allows us to say no."

Whistle

USDA Fires Organic Farming Specialist for Expressing Opinions

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© Alternet
He brought 20 years of experience in organic farming to his government service and he had played a key role in the development of the USDA's organic standards.

The free exchange of ideas is so essential to a healthy democracy, it was particularly disturbing to learn that Mark D. Keating was terminated as an Agricultural Marketing Specialist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Organic Program (NOP) for expressing personal opinions in communications with the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB).

In an interview, Mr. Keating said the official reasons given for his termination were a "complete fabrication." He added, "I was the guy who knew too much."