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Mon, 24 Jul 2017
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Israel's perspective: The supply of aid and food falls within the definition of "humanitarian" - even if it's to Al Qaeda


Tsahal
has revealed part of the "Good neighbor" operation that it has been leading in Syria for the past six years.

According to the Jewish News Service, the Israeli Defense Forces have brought aid to more than 4,000 Syrians that have been injured, more than 500 of which are children. The Israelis have delivered more than 450,000 litres of fuel, 40 tonnes of flour, 225 tonnes of foodstuffs, 12,000 kits for babies, 1,800 packets of nappies, 12 tonnes of shoes and 55 tons of clothes to face the cold.

The communication from Tsahal seems intended for internal usage to calm its population, troubled by the support Tel-Aviv is lending to the jihadists. It is accompanied by a video that has no hesitation in mixing authentic videos with clips that MI6 has filmed in the North of the country (in other words, outside the zone covered by "the Good neighbor").


Comment: So there are some sane people in Israel who are finally getting wind of their government's wrongdoings, and some good photo ops were needed to maintain the facade of illusion of Israeli benevolence.


Info

Critics of US 'Israel Anti-Boycott Act' claim even requests for information could expose citizens to penalties


Faiz Shakir of ACLU
The bill in Congress that could make it a felony punishable by prison-time to advocate for boycott against Israel is causing a big splash in liberal and progressive waters. Numerous organizations have come out against the bill, including J Street, which warns against giving the Trump administration any power to "lock them up."

Though there is also considerable confusion about just what the law would allow the government to do. The ACLU says that "simply requesting information about such boycotts" could expose a person to penalties. But Jewish Voice for Peace warns its followers not to let the bill chill their advocacy, because it "does not make it illegal for individual consumers to boycott Israeli or settlement products."

Comment: Also see: US bill making it a federal crime to support BDS sends shockwaves through progressive community


Bad Guys

Eyewitness report: Cold arm of 'jihad' sponsored by the West is reaching rebellious Philippines

A month ago I wrote an essay exposing the complex network of Western-sponsored terrorism in Asia ("Washington Jihad Express: Indonesia, Afghanistan, Syria and Philippines"). I argued that in the 1980's, Indonesian and Malaysian jihadists, indoctrinated by the Southeast Asian brand of extreme anti-Communism, went to fight in Afghanistan against the socialist governments of Karmal, and then Mohammad Najibullah, with the ultimate goal of destroying the Soviet Union. Hardened and further brainwashed, they returned home to Southeast Asia, participated in several ethnic strifes and pogroms (including those in Ambon and Poso), and then, in order to 'bridge the generational gap', embarked on the coaching of young generation of terrorists, who eventually ended up fighting in Syria and recently in the Philippines.

My essay was full of facts, and I put into it various testimonies of Southeast Asian academics, thinkers, and even of one active and prominent 'jihadi cadre' who is now living in Jakarta.

Network

Russian Duma passes bill targeting anonymity of internet messengers

© Natalia Seliverstova / Sputnik
The Russian lower house has given a final nod to bills obliging companies that own internet messengers to verify the identity of every user and banning various services that allow users to visit prohibited internet sites.

Both bills were drafted in early June by joint groups of lawmakers representing the centrist parliamentary majority party United Russia, the Communist Party and the center-left Fair Russia.

The bill on internet messengers obliges companies that provide this service to verify the identity of every user. The proposed means of identification is through users providing a mobile phone number.

In the same package of bills, the lower house passed the motion tightening the rules on the sale of mobile accounts, aiming to bar users from giving cell phone providers false data about themselves.

Info

Russian MOD confirms agreement on E. Ghouta safe zone signed, borders established

© REUTERS/ Bassam Khabieh
The agreements on functioning of Eastern Ghouta de-escalation zone in Syria have been signed, the Russian Ministry of Defense said on Saturday.

The agreements, which were signed in Cairo, Egypt, define borders of the de-escalation zone and locations of control powers, according to the statement.

"These documents define the borders of the de-escalation zone, the deployment sites and powers of the de-escalation control forces, as well as the routes for delivering humanitarian aid and clear passage to the population," the ministry said.

The ministry noted that the first humanitarian convoy to the Eastern Ghouta de-escalation zone is expected in nearest time. It will be followed by the evacuation of wounded civilians for East Ghouta.

The documents have been signed in the development of the Astana agreements with the mediation of the Egyptian side, it added.

Comment: The Syrian Army announced the ceasefire today, which took effect at noon local time. The leader of the terrorist group Jaysh al-Islam (Saudi-backed) confirmed their participation in the agreement. But the "Al-Rahman Legion" (Qatari-backed) refused to sign up.


Info

Hungarian PM Orban vows to support Poland against Brussels "inquisition offensive" over its judicial reforms

© Global Look Press
Known for his vehement opposition to the EU’s migration policy, Orban remains defiant, claiming that Hungary can’t “show solidarity with ideas and peoples whose goal is to change our lives.”
Hungary will stand by Poland in a row with the European Union, the country's prime minister Viktor Orban has said, blasting Brussels for its "inquisition offensive" against Poland which has been threatened with sanctions over its controversial judicial reform plans.

"The inquisition offensive against Poland can never succeed because Hungary will use all legal options in the European Union to show solidarity with the Poles," Reuters cited Orban as saying Saturday.

Orban's statement of support came as Poland's upper house passed the Judiciary Reform bill, which, if approved by the president, will enable lawmakers to designate judges to the Supreme Court.

Comment: Further reading: 'Threat to the rule of law': EU may strip Poland of voting rights over judicial reforms


Cell Phone

Trump tweet storm: 'Only crime so far is leaks against us'

© Kevin Lamarque / Reuters
As the probe into his administration's alleged ties to Russia continues, US President Donald Trump has said that although he has the power to grant pardons, so far, the only crimes which have been committed are the leaks against his government.

The president lashed out at the media in a series of tweets on Saturday.

Earlier, the Washington Post reported that Trump had asked his advisers about his powers to pardon himself as well as his aides and family members in the ongoing Russia investigation, according to White House sources, although one of them said this was more in the context of curiosity over the scope of the investigation's powers rather than an attempt to avoid prosecution.

Bullseye

Libtards go nuts as Jill Stein mocks DNC for "ludicrous Russia conspiracy theories"

© Bryan Woolston/ Reuters
Former Presidential candidate for the Green Party, Jill Stein dropped an atomic bomb on the DNC Friday from her Twitter account. Stein slammed the rigged DNC then accused them of covering their tracks with 'ludicrous Russia conspiracy theories'.

The liberals went crazy and attacked her for 'carrying the water for the GOP'. There is something so satisfying about watching liberals attack each other!

Jill Stein sent out a tweet slamming the DNC saying, 'Unlike the Dems, I didn't sabotage Bernie Sanders in the primaries, then try to cover my tracks with ludicrous Russia conspiracy theories." OUCH! Hey Jill Stein is on point with this tweet, but every broken clock is right twice a day!


Comment: The left is willing to divide the nation, risk civil war in America and risk nuclear war with Russia simply because they still can't get over the reality that they lost! Not a single shred of evidence has been presented that actually proves Russia interfered with the U.S. election.

The Russian 'Hacking Scandal': A CNN and U.S. Deep State 'Nothing Burger'


Info

German FM tells Turkish nationals: 'You belong here with us,' despite tensions with Ankara

© Thilo Schmuelgen / Reuters
Supporters of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan wave Turkish flags during a pro-government protest in Cologne, Germany July 31, 2016.
While German policy towards Turkey will change, it won't affect Turkish nationals residing in the country, German FM Sigmar Gabriel said, as the rift between the two countries deepens.

When "innocent German citizens are being arrested," it's not possible for the German government to "remain without a response," Gabriel said in an open letter, published both in German and Turkish in Bild.

Germany's policies towards Turkey will therefore change, he wrote, reiterating his previous statement. The policy change, however, will not affect the Turkish nationals residing in Germany.

"We will re-examine our cooperation and especially the economic aid to Turkey," the letter reads.

"However difficult the political relations between Germany and Turkey, one thing is clear: you, people of Turkish roots in Germany, belong here with us, whether you have a German passport or not."

Gabriel also noted that despite the row, Germany is "homeland" to many Turks and that Berlin has always been "committed to good relations with Turkey because we know that a good relationship between Germany and Turkey is important to you [Turks in Germany]."

Chart Pie

A tale of two nations: Russia's economic prospects look excellent while America's look bleak

Taking the extraordinary USA and EU economic sanctions against Russia and low oil prices since 2014 into account, Russia's economic outlook looks excellent going forward while that of Trump's America looks bleak, to put it mildly. Paraphrasing the memorable 1992 Presidential candidates debate between a then-young William Jefferson Clinton and George H.W. Bush, "It's the debt, stupid."

In the past few years too many US economists and analysts such as Moody's Credit Rating have tried to dismiss the economy of the Russian Federation as a near-bankrupt Soviet-era oil and gas-dependent economy, devastated by the 2014 collapse in oil price. This is a grave mistake, especially so as military calculations of NATO in many cases depend on such poorly-informed and dated judgments. Here are just a few select examples of what is really going on in terms of cutting edge and even bleeding edge technology R&D and commercialization in Russia in the civilian sector. The West's neo-colonial smug arrogance has no place.

Yes, the physical economy Russia has great problems. I've traveled throughout Russia many times since 1994. I have seen much beyond the breath-taking beauty of the Czar palaces of St. Petersburg or the spectacular Moscow Kremlin fortress constructed in the 1480's. I've seen dilapidated infrastructure and streets with New York-style potholes in Russia's smaller cities.