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A good week for the smiting of the ungodly

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© Rex FeaturesEmbattled professor:Richard Dawkins
The anger last week against the smug anti-religion brigade was quite startling.

Atheism has had a bad week. First there was the contest between the Church and the unbelievers' Vicar on Earth which ended with a score of God 1, Richard Dawkins 0. Then the equality commissar, Trevor Phillips, came along with a stunningly inept analogy between Christian observance and sharia law - and got so resoundingly pilloried that he had to be carried off the field. Make no mistake: it was atheism that was on manoeuvres here. It may have marched under the banner of "secularism" but that was a deliberately misleading and, as it turned out, not very successful tactic. As Professor Dawkins himself said in one of his broadcasting appearances, secularism and atheism are different things.

You bet they are. Secularism as understood, for example, in the United States - the most famously successful secular society in history - is no enemy of religious belief. The separation of church and state enshrined in the American Constitution is designed to guarantee the freedom of worship: to protect the observance of all faiths from oppression or interference by the state. It is the ultimate acknowledgement of the importance - in effect, of the sacrosanct nature - of religious belief and practice, regarding it as one of the "unalienable" human rights.

This principle has been revisited just recently in a spectacular clash between President Obama and the Roman Catholic Church over the matter of whether Church institutions should be obliged by federal statute to provide free contraception. There can be no question of where the Constitution stands on this issue: if a case should ever come to the Supreme Court, it is the Church that will win.

MIB

Chinese newspaper accuses west of provoking civil war in Syria

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© Sana/ReutersSyria's president, Bashar al-Assad, meets the Chinese vice foreign minister, Zhai Jun, in Damascus.
People's Daily says demands for Bashar al-Assad to step down could start war that would require foreign intervention

A leading Chinese newspaper has accused western countries of stirring up civil war in Syria, where police and militia patrols have clamped down on a district of the capital to prevent further demonstrations against the president, Bashar al-Assad.

After almost a year of protests against Assad's 11-year rule, the uprising has moved to his centre of power in Damascus, where the security police surrounded a funeral of a young protester on Sunday to ensure there was no repeat of some of biggest demonstrations in the capital.

China's Communist party mouthpiece, the People's Daily, said in a front page commentary that the west's support of the opposition and its demands for Assad to step down could provoke a "large-scale civil war" that might demand foreign intervention.

Mail

Blaming the Victims: Miramonte Scandal Prompts Rosewood Elementary Principal To Send Letter Home

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© AP
One LAUSD father is crying foul against the district after his daughters were sent home with a memo about the Miramonte School sex abuse scandal.

The letter to parents, which includes details about how Miramonte students were blindfolded and had cockroaches placed on them, was written by Rosewood Avenue Elementary Principal Linda Crowder and sent home with all her students on Monday for parents to read.

From the letter, which appears in full below:
As I reflect on the disturbing occurrences at Miramonte, I am more confused over the fact that the children did not report. How is it that the children did not believe that what the teacher was doing to them was wrong? How could being blindfolded, placed in a closet, and having cockroaches placed on them not be wrong? I believe that the teachers involved in these heinous acts preyed on the most vulnerable of the children; children of poverty, children of abuse, children with uninvolved parents, and children of undocumented parents.

Question

$6 Trillion in Allegedly Fake U.S. Bonds Seized

Fed Reserve Mother box
© BBC
Several news outlets are reporting that Italian prosecutors claimed to have seized a record $6 trillion in allegedly fake U.S. Treasury bonds from 1934 with a nominal value of $1 billion each.

The bonds were reportedly hidden in makeshift compartments of three safety deposit boxes in Zurich according to an emailed statement from Potenza-based Italian prosecutors.

Eight people were reportedly arrested due to the inquiry, which was codenamed "Operation Vulcanica" and the American embassy in Rome has already examined the bonds although embassy officials have yet to comment.

It gets really strange when we find out that, "The individuals involved were planning to buy plutonium from Nigerian sources, according to phone conversations monitored by the police."

Even more strange is that the bonds were reportedly held in crates marked as property of the Chicago Federal Reserve System, in fact the picture of the crate released by the BBC reveals that the boxes were Treaty of Versailles Mother Boxes.

Bomb

Thailand: Bomb Suspects 'Were Anti-Iran Exiles'

Scene of Bangkok blast
© EPAScene of Bangkok blast
Four Iranians suspected of involvement in a botched bomb plot targeting Israeli diplomats in Bangkok were members of an exiled Iranian opposition group which wanted the incident to reflect badly on Teheran, Syedsulaiman Husaini, Shia leader of Thailand, said on Sunday.

He claimed the four belonged to the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organisation (also known as MEK, MKO and the People's Mujahedeen Organisation of Iran, or PMOI) which aims to overthrow the current Iranian government.

The MEK has been on the US Department of State's list of foreign terrorist organisations since 1977.

Thai authorities and security agencies were not familiar with the group, said Mr Syedsulaima, who is also director of the Islamic studies centre at Al Mahdi Institute and former president of the Iran University Alumni Association.

The Islamic scholar said the bomb incident was unlikely to be the work of the Iranian government as speculated because Bangkok and Teheran have good bilateral relations.

A secret report by Iran's security agency also indicated that the Iran nationals linked with Bangkok's latest bomb plot were members of the MEK, reports said.

Formed in the 1960s, the organisation participated in Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution that replaced the country's pro-Western ruler, Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, with a Shi'ite Islamist regime led by the Ayatollah Khomeini. The MEK, whose ideology mixes Marxism and Islam, was expelled from Iran two years later after trying to stage an armed uprising against Khomeini.

Red Flag

'Hundreds gather' in China after monk's self-immolation

China monks
© Flickr / Wonderlane
Hundreds of Tibetans gathered in China's southwest to hold a vigil for a young Buddhist monk who set himself on fire, a rights group said, in the latest self-immolation to hit the country.

The 18-year-old monk, identified as Nangdrol, set himself alight Sunday in Sichuan province's Rangtang county, where one Tibetan was reportedly shot dead by security forces last month, the International Campaign for Tibet (ICT) said on Monday.

Citing exiled Tibetan sources with contacts in the area, ICT said Nangdrol had died and his body was taken back to a local monastery. The information was confirmed by the London-based Free Tibet.

Monks did not comply with police orders to hand over the body and more than 1,000 people gathered to hold a vigil on Sunday evening, ICT said.

Bad Guys

US: In labored clarification, Fox contributor castigates military's 'fake heroism'

Liz Trotta
© Screengrab via FoxNews.comFox News contributor Liz Trotta.
Appearing on the Fox News show America's News HQ, contributor Liz Trotta attempted to clarify remarks she made earlier this month that became fodder for The Daily Show, during which host Jon Stewart summarized that she did not want the military helping women who've been "raped too much."

Unfortunately for the former Washington Times editor, what she actually said isn't going to make the controversy go away - but then, that may have been the point.

After suggesting that the issue of women in military roles has "never gotten a fair and open hearing," Trotta went on to say: "The political correctness infecting the Pentagon has resulted in silly and dishonest fairy tales about female heroism," she said. "Has anyone forgotten the Jessica Lynch story?"

"There are countless other stories of fake heroism or exaggerated prowess in which women are the stars, many of them tailored for The New York Times and its agenda to promote militant feminism, no matter what the truth," Trotta added.

Coffee

US: Employers discriminate against long-term unemployed: reports

Unemployed workers
© Screenshot via CBSUnemployed workers in Stamford, Connecticut.
A number of long-term, unemployed people in Stamford, Connecticut revealed to CBS' 60 Minutes how they have been discriminated by the job market for being out of work, resulting in questions as to whether they would be employed ever again.

"There's no doubt," worker Frank O'Neil told reporter Scott Pelley. "I mean, I've seen it in print, whether it's some newspaper ads or online during those types of advertisements, I've actually seen, 'If you are unemployed, you need not apply.'"

O'Neil added: "Just look at the web. You see the phrase everywhere: 'Must be currently employed.' Businesses can't legally discriminate by age, race or sex, but there's a new minority group now, the long term unemployed."

Stormtrooper

US, Texas: Hill County town fears police influence is out of control


Unless you turn at the blinking light at State Highway 171 and FM 67, you might not notice Covington, Texas, which is the way most in this tiny town want it.

Now, out of fear and frustration, they want the public to know.

"They are scared to death now," said Covington City Council member Marty Smith. "They lock their doors, they lock the car doors because they are scared of the police."

Smith said she also fears the man running the Hill County town, Police Chief Wade Laurence.

"Wade Lawrence asked me what it was going to take to shut me up, and them to arrest me and handcuff me at a council meeting," Smith said. "I'm 69 years old and I don't need the hassle of it."

Alarm Clock

SOTT Focus: How is the World Going to End in 2012?

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I read in the news this morning that some video game developers started a $400,000 pledge drive to fund their new video game. In just 24 hours, they had collected more than they needed: They got 1.4 MILLION!

For a video game. To pay them just to hang out and write code. Truth isn't wanted anymore: only fun fiction that keeps people from having to deal with the real world.

So, let me end your suspense: The answer to the question in the title is "yes". The world is ending in 2012. That is, the final implementation of the fascist, totalitarian New World Order will be accomplished this year and you will be in that "New World" that the global elite have designed for you, and planned to implement for a very long time now. Oh, indeed, similar New World Order's have been staged in the past on smaller scales, but this time it's global because they are all in on it together! Former New World Order's didn't really fail, even if they ostensibly fell; they just passed the torch around for millennia, spreading the disease, growing the sickness in society, until finally, now, with global communication and incredible weapons of destruction in their hands, they are ready to finalize the Faustian bargain that you, the people, signed with your blood.

That's what 2012 is all about. It's not about some grand and glorious transformation or ascension to another existence! It's not about being 'raptured' to heaven at the right hand of Jesus because you helped to 'initiate the Eschaton'! It's not about 'Starseeds' being taken aboard spacecraft and getting airlifted to some other planet of the '5th dimension'. Pure and simple, prophecy is coming true, just not the way you all thought. It is the end of your world as human beings, your reduction to pure slave-hood, your children turned over to be sex toys or cannon fodder for psychopaths, and there's nothing you can do about it now.