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Israel's Jewish Exodus

© www.inminds.co.uk
Israeli Passport in flames
Hard-line Israelis reject the idea of reasonable compromises for peace, arguing that any significant concessions to Palestinian sovereignty would threaten Israel's security or the Zionist cause, but Lawrence Davidson notes that demographic trends, including a growing Jewish exodus from Israel, could have far worse consequences.

If the historical goal of the state of Israel is to provide the world's Jews a secure national home, a place of refuge in a world of real or potential anti-Semitism, it seems to have failed.

It has failed not because this writer says so, but because an increasing number of its own Jewish citizens say so.

There have been studies originating both in Israel and abroad that show "as many as half of the Jews living in Israel will consider leaving ... if in the next few years the current political and social trends continue." This finding is in addition to the fact that yerida, or emigration out of Israel, has long been running at higher numbers than aliyah, or immigration into the country.

The Israel Central Bureau of Statistics states that as of 2005, 650,000 Israelis have left the country for over one year and not returned. The great majority of these were Jews. In addition, polls show that at least 60 percent and as high as 80 percent of remaining Israeli Jews "sympathize with those who leave the country."

Among those who stay, there is the conviction that the safe thing is to have a second passport issued by the United States or a European country.

As the Haaretz reporter Gideon Levy puts it, "if our forefathers dreamt of an Israeli passport, there are those among us who are now dreaming of a foreign passport."


Wikileaks - Kristinn Hrafnsson

Kristinn Hrafnsson
© unknown
WikiLeaks spokesman Kristinn Hrafnsson
Until 2006, just five short years ago, no-one had heard of the whistleblower website Wikileaks.

That all changed very quickly when news footage from July 2007 was released showing a U.S. Apache helicopter shooting and killing a Reuters photographer in Baghdad. Then last year, almost 400,000 classified U.S. military documents on the war in Iraq were released by Wikileaks, the largest such leak in history. It happened just months after Wikileaks published tens of thousands of secret documents relating to the war in Afghanistan, and that information was spread across several newspapers - including the New York Times, the Guardian and Der Spiegel.

The public face of Wikileaks, Editor-in-Chief, Julian Assange was soon to become the focus of some unwanted attention himself culminating in allegations of sexual misconduct in Sweden. Detained by authorities in the UK, Assange will have spent six months under house arrest in the English countryside when he turns 40 on the third of July. On the 12th and 13th of July, he will fight extradition to Sweden.


Ron Paul calls Congressional Hearing to demand full audit of US gold

© Unknown
Who ate all the gold?
With the price of gold at record highs, presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul wants to make sure the U.S. gold bars at Fort Knox are really there.

Paul called a congressional hearing Thursday to grill federal officials about his bill to audit and inventory all of the gold reserves at Fort Knox, Ky., West Point, N.Y., and Denver, even though Treasury officials insist that the gold is audited annually and is all there.

During the hearing, Paul suggested that the Federal Reserve of New York, which has 5% of the U.S. gold reserves, has the ability to secretly sell or swap gold with other countries without anyone knowing.

"The Fed is pretty secret, you know," said Paul, who leans Libertarian. "Congress doesn't have much say on what's going on over there. They do a lot of hiding."

Bad Guys

Netanyahu Passed On His Psychopathic Genes? The Racist Facebook Rants of Netanayhu's Son

© Unknown
Yair Netanyahu
Haaretz's Uri Blau uncovered today racist comments and extreme right-wing rhetoric on Yair Netanyahu's Facebook page. Yair, eldest son of PM Netanyahu, is currently in mandatory IDF service, on the army's spokesperson unit. He called to boycott Arab businesses (he even admined a Facebook group for that, but only 23 members joined him), made racist comments on Muslims and Arabs, and expressed fierce opposition to a Palestinian state.

On the information section of the boycott o group - formed after sectarian clashes between Arabs and Jews in Akko on Yom Kippur two and a half years ago - the young Netanyahu said:
"The Arab sons-of-bitches desecrated our holiest day... it is our duty to do the minimum to save our honor and boycott every Arab business or product. Beside, I boycotted those shits even before."


NATO site hacked

NATO is warning subscribers to its e-Bookshop service that hackers have likely stolen its customer database.

The site is run as a separate service for distributing NATO information and does not contain any classified or secret information.

The bookshop has been closed and all members been warned by email to change their passwords if they are using them for other websites or services.

The email said: "Our examinations show a possible compromise of user information (username, password, address and email address) for people who have ordered publications from the e-Bookshop or subscribed to our email service.


Despite Arrest, Lulzsec Sails on

The hacking group known as LulzSec pledged to continue their online rampage Tuesday, a day after U.K. police arrested a man allegedly affiliated with the group.

Scotland Yard declined to name the 19 year old man, but LulzSec and local media identified him as Ryan Cleary. According to LulzSec, he merely operated an Internet Relay Chat (IRC) server used by the group and was not a leader.

"Ryan Cleary is not part of LulzSec; we house one of our many legitimate chatrooms on his IRC server, but that's it," the group said Tuesday in a Twitter message. "Clearly the UK police are so desperate to catch us that they've gone and arrested someone who is, at best, mildly associated with us. Lame."


Accused SOCA attacker reportedly 'keen' to help cops

Bail rejected at Thursday hearing

A 19-year-old UK man accused of taking part in an attack on the website of the Serious Oranised Crime Agency was denied bail during a brief court hearing on Thursday.

Ryan Cleary didn't enter a plea to the five offenses Metropolitan Police leveled against him on Wednesday, according to media reports. The judge at the Westminster Magistrates' Court ruled there was insufficient information to set bail and scheduled another hearing for Saturday morning. He is being held at the Charing Cross police station in central London.


Stuxnet: Anatomy of a Computer Virus

An infographic dissecting the nature and ramifications of Stuxnet, the first weapon made entirely out of code. This was produced for Australian TV program HungryBeast on Australia's ABC1

Direction and Motion Graphics: Patrick Clair
Written by: Scott Mitchell

Production Company: Zapruder's Other Films.


China Warns U.S. to Stay Out of Regional Disputes

© The Associated Press
In Hanoi, a sign read 'Paracel and Spratly islands belong to Vietnam.'
On the eve of talks with the U.S., China warned against American involvement in the increasingly tense territorial disputes in the South China Sea and accused some of China's neighbors of "playing with fire."

Cui Tiankai, vice minister of foreign affairs, blamed other countries in the region - and later singled out Vietnam - for provocation in recent incidents that have rekindled longstanding acrimony over control of areas in the vast stretch of water between them. And he dismissed calls from Vietnam and the Philippines for the U.S. to play a role in resolving those tensions, admonishing that Washington should "approach such issues in a very prudent way."

"I believe some countries now are playing with fire," Mr. Cui told a small group of reporters. "And I hope the U.S. won't be burned by this fire."

The fresh warning highlights the difficult issues that dog ties between Beijing and Washington despite efforts to smooth relations after serious strains last year. The resurgent tension in the South China Sea is likely to feature in Mr. Cui's talks Saturday in Hawaii with U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell, who oversees Asia-Pacific affairs, intended to be the first in a regular series of bilateral consultations on Asia-Pacific issues.

Bizarro Earth

Half a Million Displaced as Khartoum Moves to Crush Sudan's Nuba People

© Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images
New fighting has increased the chances that a north-south war will reignite, ending hopes of peaceful partition
Fierce fighting raises fears the country's 22-year civil war will be reignited as the government turns on the north's Africans, sidelined in the south's peace deal

Fierce new fighting along Sudan's volatile north-south divide is raising deep concern for the safety of the Nuba people, the forgotten victims of the country's long-running civil war who are once again under attack by government forces and militias.

The fighting has significantly increased the chances that the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) that ended the civil war six years ago will collapse, reigniting a north-south war and ending all hopes of peaceful partition when oil-rich South Sudan formally declares itself independent on 9 July.

Many Nuba fought alongside the southern rebels of the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) in the 22-year war. As black Africans within the Arabised north of Sudan, their hope was that the "New Sudan" promised by the SPLA would end their marginalisation and win respect for Nuba languages, religious observances and culture. The war that began in the 1980s in the Nuba region of South Kordofan was not just a footnote to the war in the south, it was a civil war in its own right, a deep-rooted indigenous rebellion that prompted a declaration of jihad by the Khartoum government in January 1992. Villages were burnt, livestock raided, food stores destroyed and hundreds of thousands of Nuba forced into "peace camps". But the Nuba were short-changed in the CPA. It denied them self-rule and, crucially, did not specify what would happen to the 30,000-strong Nuba rebel army enrolled in the SPLA.

On 5 June, as the Sudanese government army prepared to "control" - disarm - Nuba fighters, fighting erupted in South Kordofan's capital, Kadugli, and spread quickly across most of the region. The battle for Kadugli became a street-by-street war of attrition: Khartoum piled in brigades of regulars and irregulars, and the SPLA relentlessly mortared the army's divisional headquarters.