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Wed, 06 Dec 2023
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'German Arms Sales Up 50% in 2010'

© unknown
A file photo of German-made Heckler and Koch G36 Assault rifle
A German government report has revealed that Germany sold around EUR 2 billion (USD 2.66 billion) in weapons and military hardware in 2010 -- an increase of around 50 percent compared to the previous year.

The data appeared in the German government's annual Defense Exports Report, Der Spiegel reported on Monday.

Most of the arms deliveries were to European Union member countries or NATO states, but some defense products found markets in Africa and the Persian Gulf states as well, the German weekly said.

In 2009, the country exported EUR 1.34 billion worth of defense products. Most of the products exported were high-value armaments like submarines, warships and tanks.

War Whore

US Rep Calls for Bombing Iran Refineries

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US Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich
US Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich has called for a military strike against Iran's refineries to stop the country's peaceful nuclear program.

The US should bomb Iran's refineries "as a last recourse," Gingrich said earlier in a 2012 presidential debate in Washington.

The former House speaker opined that the US could break Iran within a year with "cutting off the gasoline supply to Iran and then, frankly, sabotaging the only refinery they have."

His hawkish comments came as Washington and its allies are putting pressure on Tehran over its nuclear program, imposing unilateral sanctions on the country following the November 8 report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

In an earlier presidential debate earlier this month, Gingrich advocated increased covert terrorism against Iran.


'US Plans Huge Military Spending in Iraq'

© Press TV
American soldiers in Iraq
The United States is set to spend more than USD 6 billion in Iraq in 2012, despite Washington's plans to withdraw American troops from the war-ravaged country by the end of 2011.

Most of the allocated budget is going to be spent on military purposes, said US Ambassador to Iraq James Jeffrey in a Monday report by Anti-war.com.

"We are standing up an embassy to carry out a USD 6.5 billion program, when you throw in the refugee programs as well as the actual State Department budget for 2012, of assistance in support for Iraq on a very broad variety of security and non-security issues," Jeffrey told reporters at a roundtable.

"The direct budget, operating and assistance (to Iraq), was USD 6.2 billion," Jeffrey said.

No Entry

Russia Threatens to Block NATO Routes

© Press TV
Trucks carrying NATO supplies to US-led forces in Afghanistan
Russia has threatened to block NATO's supply routes to Afghanistan, should the Western military alliance continue to disregard Moscow's concerns about the US-led defense shield for Europe, a report says.

Russian Ambassador to NATO Dmitri Rogozin warned that Moscow will review its cooperation with the Western military alliance on Afghanistan if the NATO fails to address Russia's objections, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.

Earlier on Thursday, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned that direct actions will be taken if his country's concerns are not addressed.

Medvedev envisioned possible missile attacks on Poland, Romania, Spain, and Turkey as a means to disable the counter-missile batteries, if the United States fails to acknowledge the concerns of the Russian defense officials.


Global health organization to purchase millions of toxic HPV vaccines to administer to women and girls in third-world countries

© healthwatchmd.com

At its recent board meeting in Bangladesh, the GAVI Alliance, formerly known as the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations, announced plans to bring the deadly human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines Gardasil (Merck & Co.) and Cervarix (GlaxoSmithKline) into the third world. A pro-vaccination group backed by the World Bank, UNICEF, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the vaccine industry, GAVI's stated goal is to vaccinate 240 million children by 2015.

As many as two million women and girls in nine unidentified developing countries could soon receive one of the two HPV vaccines, even though HPV is potentially linked to only one percent, of all cervical cancers, according to some. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), however, has stated that "HPV is not associated with cervical cancer" at all.

And yet the vaccine industry through its various "nonprofit" and government partnership continues to push the deadly vaccine on young girls, women, and now even young boys around the world, despite the fact that it does not work and can cause horrific side effects. According to the latest figures released by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Gardasil alone has caused more than 20,000 adverse events and 71 known deaths since it was first unveiled.

Bad Guys

US: Senate Rejects Effort to Remove Terrorist Detainee Policy in Defense Bill

US capitol
© AP
The Senate rejected an amendment on Tuesday that would have removed a provision from the pending Defense spending bill to toughen U.S. policy towards suspected terrorists captured on the battlefield or on the home front.

The amendment, defeated 37-61, would have struck a section of the spending bill that authorizes the president to use "all necessary and appropriate force" to detain people suspected of terrorism and instead would have implemented a timeline to allow further hearings and opportunities for the military to make recommendations on how detainee policy ought to change.

Prior to the vote, the amendment's author, Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.), argued that military and law enforcement professionals ought to be given a louder voice in the deliberation over a policy that could so drastically affect the execution of their duties.

"We are ignoring the advice and the input of the director of the FBI, the director of the intelligence community, the attorney general of the United States, the Secretary of Defense and the White House," said Udall.

Bad Guys

Monsanto in Gates' Clothing? The Emperor's New GMOs

© unknown
If you had any doubts about where the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is really placing its bets, AGRA Watch's recent announcement of the Foundation's investment of $23.1 million in 500,000 shares of Monsanto stock should put them to rest. Genetic engineering: full speed ahead.

If you are one of those people who believes the axiom that Monsanto is the farmer's friend (and the corollary, that its climate-ready, bio-fortified GMOs can save the world from hunger) you will not be surprised, disappointed, or find any conflict of interest in this investment.

But if you are part of the growing population who gets their information about GMOs from scientists who are not beholden to corporate funding, has a problem with anti-trust issues, or is getting queasy about the increasing monopoly power of philanthropy capital... it's time to say the Emperor has no clothes.

Light Sabers

Just in case? Russian fleet to reach Syria in December

Admiral Kuznetsov
© RIA Novosti / Alexey Danichev
Heavy aircraft-carrying missile cruiser Admiral Kuznetsov.
Speculation is growing whether Russian war ships heading to the Mediterranean will indeed anchor by the Syrian coast. And, despite military officials' assurances, some expect it to disturb the balance of power in the region.

­Conflicting reports are coming from the Russian military on whether the Russian battle group of three vessels led by the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier will in fact visit the Syrian port of Tartus.

The long-planned mission will begin on December 10 and one source in the Russian Defense Ministry has told Itar-Tass news agency that the ships will arrive at the port by the end of December.

Meanwhile, other military sources told Ria Novosti news agency that the group will only carry out drill in the Mediterranean and in the Atlantic without entering Tartus and, in any case, the Admiral Kuznetsov is too large to be able to dock there.

War Whore

UK - Cameron: Iran faces serious consequences for failing to protect Embassy

Dozens of Iranians smashed windows, burned flags to protest sanctions
© Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images
Iranian protesters broke into the British Embassy in Tehran Tuesday and brought down the British flag.

Tehran, Iran - U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron said Iran's failure to defend the British embassy from an attack in Tehran was a disgrace that will have serious consequences.

Cameron called the storming of the embassy in Tehran on Tuesday "outrageous and indefensible."

Iranian protesters stormed two British Embassy compounds, smashing windows and burning the British flag during a rally to demonstrate against sanctions imposed by Britain, live Iranian television showed.

The prime minister said all embassy staff have been accounted for and praised Britain's ambassador to Iran for handling a "dangerous situation with calm and professionalism."

Cameron said the Iranian government will face "serious consequences" for "its unacceptable failure" to protect diplomats in line with international law.

He said those measures will be considered in the coming days, adding that Iran's government must immediately secure Britain's compound and ensure the safety of its embassy staff.

Several dozen protesters broke away from a crowd of a few hundred protesters outside the main embassy compound, scaled the embassy gates and went inside. Iranian security forces appeared to do little to stop them.


Battlefield America: U.S. Citizens Face Indefinite Military Detention in Defense Bill Before Senate

The Senate is set to vote this week on a Pentagon spending bill that could usher in a radical expansion of indefinite detention under the U.S. government.

A provision in the National Defense Authorization Act would authorize the military to jail anyone it considers a terrorism suspect - anywhere in the world - without charge or trial. The measure would effectively extend the definition of what is considered the military's "battlefield" to anywhere in the world, even within the United States.

Its authors, Democratic Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan and Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona, have been campaigning for its passage in a bipartisan effort. But the White House has issued a veto threat, with backing from top officials including Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and FBI Director Robert Mueller.

"This would be the first time since the McCarthy era that the United States Congress has tried to do this," says our guest, Daphne Eviatar of Human Rights First, which has gathered signatures from 26 retired military leaders urging the Senate to vote against the measure, as well as against a separate provision that would repeal the executive order banning torture. "In this case, we've seen the administration very eagerly hold people without trial for 10-plus years in military detention, so there's no reason to believe they would not continue to do that here. So we're talking about indefinite military detention of U.S. citizens, of lawful U.S. residents, as well as of people abroad."