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Sat, 22 Oct 2016
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Syria UN ambassador reports 1 million Syrians return home since launch of Russian anti-Islamic State operations

© Khalil Ashawi / Reuters
Syrians carry their belongings as they cross back into Syria at the Syrian-Turkish border crossing of Bab al-Hawa in Idlib province, Syria September 23, 2015.
Around 1 million Syrians have returned to their home cities liberated by the Syrian military with Russian air support, Syria's UN ambassador said Monday, adding that Damascus is determined to work with any state that takes combating terrorism seriously.

Syria's ambassador to the United Nations, Bashar Jaafari, said that "this is precisely what happens when it comes to Syrian-Russian collaborative military action against terrorists and exchange of intelligence between Syria, Iraq, Iran and Russia. This has practically resulted in terrorist groups' retreat from [their positions in] many areas, which allowed 1 million internally displaced persons to return safely to their homes."

The Syrian ambassador, who took part in a UN Security Council meeting on Monday, confirmed that the Syrian government was ready to cooperate "with any state which has a serious approach to combating terrorism," TASS reported.

Jaafari also said that the anti-ISIS campaign by the Syrian military has had a positive impact on security worldwide and in Europe.

Comment: Amazing how that works out but the US and NATO probably don't want the refugees returning to their homes.

Penis Pump

Couldn't catch a cold: TSA fails to detect loaded gun at Atlanta airport, gets through 'security'

A traveler who flew from Atlanta, Georgia to Chicago, Illinois says he accidentally carried a loaded semi-automatic handgun onto his plane in his backpack. The Transportation Security Administration did not find the gun during pre-flight screening.

Blake Alford said over the weekend that he discovered the gun after he had landed in Chicago on a Southwest Airlines flight from Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on November 5.

Alford, a retired truck driver, said it was an innocent mistake, and that he wanted to speak out to ensure such a security breach does not happen again.

"People need to know TSA needs to tighten up," Alford told WGCL. "If they'll take toothpaste. They'll make people get out of wheelchairs. They'll make me take off my belt buckle and my shoes. How did my gun go through?"

Comment: TSA's so-called security practices are a total joke. The entire operation is security theater, designed to provide the illusion of security (while conditioning the populace for obedience and compliance), instead of being actually secure.

Light Sabers

Police kill young black man under questionable circumstances, Minneapolis has its 'Ferguson moment'

© (Mark Vancleave/Star Tribune via AP)
Protesters marched down Plymouth Avenue North to the Minneapolis 4th Precinct. Neighbors and community members gathered at the scene where a man was shot and wounded by a Minneapolis Police officer early Nov. 15.
A young black man was shot by a police officer in Minneapolis early Sunday morning. On that much, police and the protesters who marched through the streets of Minneapolis Sunday agree. But on other, crucial points — Was the man handcuffed when he was shot? Is he even still alive? — there is little consensus or clarity.

Minneapolis Deputy Police Chief Bruce Folkens said at a news conference that police were called to the scene of an assault around 12:45 a.m. Sunday. En route, they learned that a man was interfering with paramedics' efforts to treat his alleged victim. When officers arrived, they got into a "physical altercation" with the man, who was not in handcuffs. One officer fired his weapon at some point during the struggle; the man, whom they have not named, was hit and taken to a local hospital.

Activists and witnesses at the scene tell a different story.

Comment: Unfortunately, this is just another in a long line of police killings. People of color are especially vulnerable, and it's clear that we have a systemic problem.


To serve and brutalize! San Francisco cops brutally beat suspect with batons after long car chase

© sfpublicdefender/YouTube
A 40-minute car chase ending in San Francisco culminated in two police officers chasing down the suspect on foot, before brutally beating him for about 30 seconds, even as he lay flat on the ground and made no attempt to resist arrest.

The whole incident was filmed on CCTV, with sound. The cops appear to be shouting "Why'd you f*#%ing run?" as they use batons to repeatedly beat the suspect. The two Alameda County Sheriff's deputies have been placed on paid leave on Sunday, following the incident on Thursday, the Sheriff's spokesman told the SF Gate. Their names are not being disclosed.

The chase went from San Leandro to the Mission neighborhood in San Francisco. The deputies approached the man before the car chase, which ensued after the suspect, Stanislav Petrov, 29, fled in a stolen car, at around 1:38am, according to the spokesman. Before making his escape, Petrov reportedly rammed one of the officers' cars, allegedly also knocking down one of the officers. They then pursue him into SF, until he crashed his car and tried to run. The pair eventually caught up with him in an alleyway, immediately laying into him with their batons and boots. Petrov lay face down on the ground, without resisting.

He can be heard screaming for help, as the two continue. This lasted for about 30 seconds until backup arrived, but the video has been pieced together from several bits of footage, so the beating could have gone on for longer than that. They reportedly thought the suspect was armed and could also be on drugs.

A gun was later recovered from Petrov. He was taken to the San Francisco General Hospital after the beating, where he remained until Sunday with no information available on his condition.

San Francisco public defender, Jeff Adachi, who released the video, believes excessive force was used by the two cops. "He didn't pose any threat at that point, and they are clearly using excessive force and trying to seriously hurt him when he was on the ground and subdued.

Comment: An alleged suspect or not, you'd have to be stupid NOT to run from police these days.

Police in America kill 1,031 civilians in 317 days: More than 3 per day, every single day in 2015


'Cop kicked in the door': NC police fatally shoot man who told them to get warrant

© Sebastien Nogier / Reuters
A North Carolina sheriff's deputy visiting a home during an investigation was told a suspect no longer lived at the residence and to get a search warrant. The deputy then kicked down the door, beat and tased John Livingston, finally fatally shooting him.

Witnesses said that two Harnett County sheriff's deputies arrived at a Spring Lake, North Carolina, residence at about 3:40 a.m. on Sunday, according to WNCN. Clayton Carroll, a resident, said that the deputies were searching for someone who no longer lived at the trailer. When deputies asked his roommate, Livingston, if they could search the trailer, he said, "Not without a search warrant," as he closed the door on the deputies, Carroll told WNCN.



Be afraid: Evacuation of several buildings at Harvard University due to bomb threat

Following what officials called an "unconfirmed" bomb threat, Harvard University buildings have been evacuated.

Several buildings have been evacuated after an unconfirmed bomb threat was received on Monday, Harvard University announced in a statement on its website.

"As most of you are now aware, we received an unconfirmed bomb threat affecting the Science Center, as well as Sever, Emerson and Thayer Halls on the Cambridge campus," the statement said. "The buildings have been evacuated and law enforcement officials are on scene. Entry to the Yard is restricted."

Alarm Clock

Protesters clashed with police over the weekend in the largest protest South Korea has seen in years

© Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images
Demonstrators in South Korea staged the largest protests the country has seen in nearly a decade over the weekend calling for President Park Geun-Hye's resignation.

Students and unionized workers took to the streets on Saturday protesting Park's proposed labor law reforms, which would give workers fewer protections, and the introduction of a new government-approved textbook in schools. Students and teachers say the text book presents a biased view of history with a right-wing slant. The New York Times explains:


"Clearly a hate crime": Mosque set on fire in Canada

Picture posted on Twitter on November 14, 2015 shows Masjid Al-Salaam on fire.
A mosque in Canada has been deliberately set on fire in what is being labeled as "clearly a hate crime," by the Muslim community there. On Sunday, police authorities told reporters that they were still investigating the case of arson at Masjid al-Salaam, the only mosque in the city of Peterborough on the Otonabee River in central Ontario.

The fire engulfed the mosque on Saturday around 11 pm local time, less than an hour after dozens of people from the Muslim community gathered there. No one was injured in the fire, police said, adding that the mosque was unusable due to the extent of the damage. Local media cited police authorities as saying that they were still looking into the motive for the burning of the mosque and searching for suspects.

Peterborough Mayor Daryl Bennett slammed the act in a statement released to the public, noting that the attack on "a place of worship is a despicable act," adding "Masjid al-Salaam, the name of the mosque, means mosque of peace.

Bizarro Earth

2 babies found dead near lot underwent autopsies some time ago, police learn


In this Facebook photo posted by NBC10 in Philadelphia, police investigate an alley near where two newborn babies were found dead Sunday, Nov. 15, 2015 in North Philadelphia.
Autopsies had previously been performed on two babies whose bodies were found next to a trash-littered used car lot in Philadelphia, police said on Sunday.

The bodies of a baby boy and girl were discovered in the Kensington neighborhood just before 10:30 a.m. Sunday, authorities said. The babies were pronounced dead minutes later by a medical unit and homicide detectives were notified.


Stressful lives of older tech workers

© Flickr/haynes
The average age of Googlers is 30. Notice only one of these Googlers has gray hair.
There's no question the tech industry is filled with satisfying, high paying jobs. But a career in tech comes with a deadline of sorts.

After you turn 50, you'll likely find yourself struggling for job security and respect.

In tech these days, people in their 20's are worshiped. "Young people are just smarter," Mark Zuckerberg infamously said back in 2007.

People in their 30's are tolerated. "Don't fund anyone over 30" was the unwritten VC rule back in 2007, too.

Tech workers in their 40's are starting to look over their shoulder. (A group at Google called 'Greyglers' is for Google employees over 40.)

As for people in their 50's? Many are under tremendous stress. And those in their 60s and older are very hard to find. Even CEOs over a certain age face a constant stream of when-are-you-going-retire questions.