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Sun, 29 Jan 2023
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Egyptians vote incorrectly as US-backed military rulers dissolve parliament

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© Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images
Egypt Protesters gesture at military police through a barbed wire barricade during a protest against presidential candidate Ahmed Shafiq outside the Supreme Constitutional Court in Cairo, Egypt.

Judges appointed by Hosni Mubarak have dissolved the Islamist-dominated parliament and ruled his former prime minister eligible for the presidential runoff election this weekend - setting the stage for the military and remnants of the old regime to stay in power.

Thursday's politically charged rulings dealt a heavy blow to the fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood, with one senior member calling the decisions a "full-fledged coup", and the group vowed to rally the public against Ahmed Shafiq, the last prime minister to serve under Mubarak.

The decision by the Supreme Constitutional Court effectively erased the tenuous progress from Egypt's troubled transition in the past year, leaving the country with no parliament and concentrating power even more firmly in the hands of the generals who took over from Mubarak.

Several hundred people gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square after the rulings to denounce the action and rally against Shafiq, the presidential candidate seen by critics as a symbol of Mubarak's autocratic rule. But with no calls by the Brotherhood or other groups for massive demonstrations, the crowd did not grow.

Gear

'Human Rights' Groups to Support online Activists in Authoritarian Countries

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© Jb Reed/Bloomberg News
Jared Cohen
From Egyptian bloggers to Russian Twitterati, activists around the world have turned the Internet into a tool for political change, even as governments have learned its usefulness for surveillance.

Now two small American human rights groups, one co-founded by a 30-year-old State Department official turned Google executive and one by an 89-year-old veteran activist who once championed Soviet dissidents, are joining forces to support online activists in authoritarian countries. Google has no direct involvement in the venture, but intends to donate money, with the amount still being discussed, according to a company official who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

The merger involves Movements.org, co-founded in 2008 by Jared Cohen, now the director of Google Ideas, the company's research arm, and Advancing Human Rights, created two years ago by Robert L. Bernstein, a retired publishing executive who started Human Rights Watch in 1978. Their age difference gives the combination an intergenerational character that both men said added to its appeal.

Comment: When reading the above propaganda, it is best to apply the '180 degree rule'. These 'human rights' groups ARE the authoritarians helping fellow authoritarians in countries on their leaders' hit-list to rebel against governments that care a damn sight better for their people than the US and EU ones do.


Airplane

Lawmakers Erect Challenges to Drones in US Airspace


Congressional lawmakers are throwing up a web of challenges to the use of domestic drones, as federal and local officials start to pave the way for the surveillance aircraft to buzz freely inside U.S. airspace.

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., is the latest to propose legislation cracking down on drones in the United States. The senator introduced a bill Tuesday that would prohibit governments from using drones without a warrant.

"Like other tools used to collect information in law enforcement, in order to use drones a warrant needs to be issued. Americans going about their everyday lives should not be treated like criminals or terrorists and have their rights infringed upon by military tactics," Paul said in a statement.

The bill follows a similar proposal earlier this month on the House side from Rep. Austin Scott, R-Ga. That bill is now before the House Judiciary Committee.

Eye 2

TSA Hiring Pedophiles and Child Pornographers

TSA
© unknown
Never an agency that does much to clear its bad name and terrible reputation for hiring some of the worst dregs of society, all the while failing regularly to live up to its purpose for existing, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is receiving fresh criticism from a Tennessee congresswoman over its hiring of pedophiles and child pornographers.

In an extremely critical report released in early June, U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn listed 50 crimes that have been committed by TSA agents, including two who worked at the Nashville International Airport. She said a better screening process should be implemented immediately, to keep such criminals out of the ranks.

"TSA needs to immediately remove themselves from the human resource business. This report details highly disturbing cases where pedophiles and child pornographers wearing federal law enforcement uniforms are not only patting down unsuspecting travelers, but in many cases stealing valuables from their bags," she said. "Enough is enough. It's time for Congress to step in and demand accountability from Administrator (John) Pistole."

UFO 2

UFO shapped Military drone on D.C.'s Capital Beltway


Some folks in the Washington, D.C., area are buzzing about what they thought was a UFO atop a flatbed truck on the Capitol Beltway.

Turns out the disc-shaped object was just a run-of-the-mill military drone.

MyFoxDC reports that what drivers saw - and some photographed - around 11 p.m. Wednesday on Interstate 270, and then later on Interstate 495, was an X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System being transported from Edwards Air Force Base in California to the Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland for testing.

Handcuffs

Iran Seizes Killers of Nuclear Scientists

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© Agence France-Presse/Getty Images/Atta Kenare
Iranians take part in the funeral of assassinated nuclear scientist Mostafa Ahmadi-Roshan, holding his portraits (L, C)and a poster bearing US President Barak Obama with the Star of David on his forehead (R), in Tehran on January 13, 2012, two days after he was killed when men on a motorbike slapped a magnetic bomb on his car while it was stuck in Tehran traffic.
Dubai - Iran has arrested the killers of two of its nuclear scientists, state media reported on Thursday, as the Islamic state continues to hunt down those it says are responsible for attempting to sabotage its nuclear program.

The suspects are accused of assassinating a physicist at Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation (AEOI) and a deputy director at the Natanz uranium enrichment facility using magnetic bombs that were attached to the vehicles they were in.

Tehran has accused Israel and the United States of plotting the killings to set back its nuclear program. Washington has denied any U.S. role, while Israel has declined to comment.

AEOI physicist Majid Shahriari was killed in 2010 and Mostafa Ahmadi-Roshan in January this year.

"The key perpetrators of the assassinations...were identified and, in a series of rapid and authoritative operations, were arrested and transferred to detention facilities," read a statement from the intelligence ministry, published by Press TV's website.

Vader

Remember the Words of Joseph Stalin

Psychopaths
© Signs of the Times
Everyone imposes his own system as far as his army can reach.

Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns, why should we let them have ideas.

It is enough that the people know there was an election. The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything.

- All Quotes by Joseph Stalin

Know Your Enemy

I recall wanting to read Mein Kampf as a young kid, although to this day I have only read excerpts. I wanted to know what made this guy tick, what his thoughts were. How could someone justify such horrific actions. As I have progressed into adulthood I have only become more and more convinced that books written by psychopath killer dictators should be required reading for every single human being on the planet. In a similar vein, I remember hearing the argument back in high school that people should not read Machiavelli's The Prince. The argument was that if people read a manual on devious thoughts, and the application of ruthless behavior to achieve one's selfish ends, that it would permeate society and lead us all into a darker place. As soon as I heard this, of course, the first thing I did was head to the book store to buy it. I recall my reaction to the treatise vividly.

Comment: Full blown psychopaths do make it in politics, and the evidence shows they are running the show. Read Political Ponerology to see how far the rabbit hole goes.


Bad Guys

Why we must oppose Obamney for President in 2012

obamney
© unknown
There is a dangerous person running for President in 2012, and his name is Baritt Obamney. I normally try not to attack specific candidates for political office, but Baritt Obamney is so offensive to American sensibilities that I had to share this warning with my fellow Americans. In 2012, we must vote against Obamney for President.

And why? Because here is what Obamney believes in, based on his actions and voting record:

- Big, bigger and even BIGGER government! The bigger the government, the better.

- GMOs: Obamney is a huge supporter of Monsanto and the biotech industry that produces genetically modified seeds. He wants all Americans to eat foods laced with pesticides grown by the crops themselves! This is all part of the mass poisoning plan to keep America sick and incapable of resisting tyranny.

Eye 1

Spying on Americans: 64 Drone Bases on US Soil (and counting)

We like to think of the drone war as something far away, fought in the deserts of Yemen or the mountains of Afghanistan. But we now know it's closer than we thought. There are 64 drone bases on American soil. That includes 12 locations housing Predator and Reaper unmanned aerial vehicles, which can be armed.

Public Intelligence, a non-profit that advocates for free access to information, released a map of military UAV activities in the United States on Tuesday. Assembled from military sources - especially this little-known presentation (.pdf) - it is arguably the most comprehensive map so far of the spread of the Pentagon's unmanned fleet. What exact missions are performed at those locations, however, is not clear. Some bases might be used as remote cockpits to control the robotic aircraft overseas, some for drone pilot training. Others may also serve as imagery analysis depots.
US drone deployment
© US Department of Defense
The medium-size Shadow is used in 22 bases, the smaller Raven in 20 and the miniature Wasp in 11. California and Texas lead the pack, with 10 and six sites, respectively, and there are also 22 planned locations for future bases. "It is very likely that there are more domestic drone activities not included in the map, but it is designed to provide an approximate overview of the widespread nature of Department of Defense activities throughout the US," Michael Haynes from Public Intelligence tells Danger Room.

Arrow Up

Spanish Cost of Borrowing Soars After Rate Cut

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© Paul White/AP
Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany is seen on a screen at the stock exchange in Madrid on Thursday.
European leaders were facing increasing pressure on Thursday to respond to the euro crisis, as Spanish 10-year bond yields hit the 7 percent level that has served to trigger full international bailouts of other euro zone members, and Italian borrowing costs rose sharply at a debt auction.

Spain's borrowing costs soared after Moody's Investors Service downgraded the country's bond rating late Wednesday, with the yield on the 10-year bond touching 7 percent for the first time in the euro era. In Rome, the national Treasury sold 4.5 billion euros, or $5.6 billion, of debt, including three-year bonds maturing priced to yield 5.30 percent, up from the 3.91 percent it paid to move similar securities last month.

Higher borrowing costs threaten the $125 billion "bailout lite" Madrid worked out with European officials to recapitalize its banking sector, as that deal was contingent on Spain being able to continue tapping the bond market for its regular financing needs. For both Spain and Italy, rising yields endanger hopes that the countries will be able to overcome their problems without full bailouts, because high interest rates make refinancing unsustainably expensive.