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Mon, 24 Oct 2016
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World Bank study: ISIS recruits 'significantly more educated' than average countrymen

© Reuters
A vast proportion of ISIS recruits are "far from being uneducated or illiterate," the World Bank has found in a study of why people join terrorist groups. The report says some of the recruits tend to be even better educated than their average countrymen.

The World Bank-sponsored report titled 'Economic and Social Inclusion to Prevent Violent Extremism' states that, "sixty-nine percent of [Islamic State] recruits report at least a secondary education. Only fifteen percent left school before high school and less than two percent are illiterate," debunking a common myth about the jihadists.

The study, aimed at determining the social and economic reasons behind people's decisions to join Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL), was based on data on 3,803 foreign recruits. The records came from a "leaked cache of the organization's [IS] personnel records," as well as nationally representative opinion surveys, such as Gallup World Poll and World Values Survey. These provided information on the recruits' country of residence, citizenship, age, education status, previous jihadist experience and religious knowledge.

Comment: See also:


Two car bombs explode in Ankara during police op, third suspect on the run

© Umit Bektas / Reuters
Members of the Turkish police special forces.
Two car bombs went off in the Turkish capital, Ankara, after unidentified terrorists blew themselves up in response to calls by police for them to surrender, local media report.

According to Ankara's governor, Ercan Topaca, security forces launched the operation against the militants on Saturday morning at a farm some 30 kilometers (18 miles) from the capital on a tip-off from Diyarbakir, the main city in mostly-Kurdish southeastern Turkey. He confirmed there were at least two suspects, one of them a female. They were both identified.

Comment: See also: American consulate warns of US-branded hotels in Turkey face 'specific and credible' terror threats

Arrow Down

Despicable, yet unsurprising: Georgia cops who tasered handcuffed man to death won't be charged

© Mary Ann Georgantopoulos / YouTube
American police have once against demonstrated that their agenda is not to protect and serve, but to dominate and control by any means necessary and remove themselves from any reasonable means of accountability. On November 20th, sheriff deputies in Coweta County, Georgia were summoned to help subdue a man having a psychotic breakdown tasered him to death. This week, the Coweta district attorney's office announced their decision to not press charges against the officers responsible.

According to the Newnan Times, Monday, Coweta Circuit District Attorney Pete Skandalakis announced that he would not be seeking charges against Deputies Josh Sepanski and Sam Smith and Elliot.

One of the family's attorneys, Chris Stewart, called it "one of the most horrible decisions" he had ever seen a district attorney make.

The Justice Department has yet to make their decision, but it is unlikely that they will pursue charges as they have been waiting to see how the DA responded.

"We've all been fooled. Both locally and nationwide," he said.

What really matters. as the Times reports, is the last few minutes of the encounter "where he was murdered and tortured," Stewart said.

After months of keeping the video from the body cameras on the police officers under wraps, it was finally released in May to the NY Times.

Comment: See also:


Police State: Massachusetts police use military helicopter, several vehicles, and a handful of troopers to seize one cannabis plant from 81yo arthritis patient

© Aaron Josefczyk / Reuters
Massachusetts State Police and the National Guard sent a helicopter, several vehicles and a handful of troopers to an elderly woman's house to chop down one cannabis plant and haul it away in a pickup truck.

Margaret Holcomb, 81, grew a single marijuana plant in her garden, which she used to ease her glaucoma and arthritis ailments, The Washington Post reported.

She hadn't attempted to obtain a medical marijuana card due to the difficulty of getting a doctor to sign off on it, she told The Daily Hampshire Gazette. She said traveling to the dispensary in the next town and paying for marijuana grown by someone else would be too costly.

The behavior of the police was questionable in other ways, Holcomb's son, Tim, told the Gazette. He said he was told that as long as he did not demand that a warrant be provided to enter the property or otherwise escalate the situation, authorities would file no criminal charges.

Comment: He was told not to demand a warrant, because the officers likely didn't have one and they were trying to avoid the legal ramifications of their unlawful behavior.

He believes their actions constituted an "unlawful surveillance and illegal search and seizure."


Cop knocked unconscious by suspect and did not use deadly force for fear of media backlash

© Jim Young/Reuters
A female police officer in Chicago, Illinois ended up in the hospital after a man reportedly high on drugs smashed her face into the pavement. She chose not to shoot her attacker, however, because she didn't want that to become the story.

The 43-year-old officer, who has 17 years of experience on the force, responded to a call about a car crash on Chicago's West Side on Wednesday morning. She encountered a 28-year-old man walking away from the scene of the crash. He attacked, slamming the female officer's head against the pavement until she lost consciousness, the Chicago Tribune reported.

"She thought she was going to die, and she knew that she should shoot this guy, but she chose not to," Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said Thursday at an event honoring police and firefighters. "She didn't want her family or the department to go through the scrutiny the next day on national news."

The suspect injured two other officers before he was subdued through the use of a Taser and pepper spray, the Tribune said. Johnson cited the story as an example how dangerous police work is.

"Because of the scrutiny going on nationwide, there [are] officers second-guessing themselves. That's what we don't want," he said. "We have to change the narrative of the law enforcement across this country."


5 vital stories the media is covering up with irrational fear of 'evil clowns'

© The Free Thought Project.com
Just when it seemed 2016 couldn't get any weirder, mainstream media now thrusts the narrative of an evil clown apocalypse down our throats. And while there have, indeed, been a handful of incidents involving clown-costumed individuals — and it would be wise, as always, to advise your kids not to follow a clown into the woods — leave it to the fear-dependent agendas of corporate media and politicians to truly blow the situation out of proportion.

Way out of proportion — even for Halloween approaching.

Over the past few weeks, colleges, universities, and schools have issued warnings, whole public school districts even shut down over purported clown sightings, and a district attorney declared any clown attacks on schools would be considered 'terroristic threats' — before reversing course and deeming that threat a hoax.

Creepy though clowns may be to many of us, these costumed folks with painted perma-grins are just not as horrific as a litany of other issues deserving real concern this Halloween season.


Bots vs trolls, bots vs bots? People engage in long arguments with Twitter bot

© Dado Ruvic / Reuters

The internet can be a warzone of trolling, insults, arguments and just about anything you can imagine.
Now a bot has been created to engage "internet bigots" to fight by tweeting controversial statements on everything from white privilege to Donald Trump.

The bot, created by Twitter user Sarah Nyberg, goes by the name of Liz. Her job is to tweet inflammatory statements from her handle @arguetron, in order to "bait internet bigots into fighting with it for hours."

Comment: This is what internet arguments look like in 2016. Soon it will be nothing but an endless storm of bots vs bots. Of course, they will only argue about the officially approved topics as above (race, gender, abortion, guns, red vs blue). It really makes you pine for a nice cabin in the woods away from all the insanity.


Texas police find dozens of people held captive in fake rehab centers, arrest 10

© Carlo Allegri / Reuters
Police in Texas have arrested nine people after discovering dozens of people being held captive, beaten and tied to chairs in fake drug and alcohol rehabilitation facilities in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

"The conditions inside of the facilities and the treatment of the 'patients' can only be described as medieval and barbaric," Fort Worth police said, according to the AP.

Police said the 37 victims told them they were often beaten, tied to chairs and fed one package of ramen noodles a day. Beds were made of wooden two-by-fours, according to the police statement.

"All of the victims are Hispanic, and most spoke little to no English," said Fort Worth Sergeant Marc Povero.

"After interviewing the victims, it was discovered that some of them had been taken to the facility by family members. They were taken for alcohol and/or drug rehabilitation."

Comment: See also: German govt warns against crypto-Scientologist "say no to drugs" ads


Retired police officer's viewpoint on police shootings in America: Law, policy, & accountability

Viewpoint of a retired police officer, prosecutor, and public interest lawyer

From amongst themselves, the People of the United States have empowered some of their members to enforce their laws and to police their society, but things have gone terribly awry. The police are killing those they are sworn to protect and they themselves are becoming the target of public anger over racial inequality and discrimination. Video images of recent police shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota were followed by the mass murder of police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge, apparently in response to these shootings

The killing of an unarmed mentally-disturbed man last week by El Cajon, California police officers—and resulting civil disturbances—once again raises the question of the use of deadly force by law enforcement officers. The question involves complicated issues of law and policy, but the decision to shoot must often be made in a nanosecond. With the widespread availability of video cameras, instant playback, and social media, however, the justification for the use of deadly force is being increasingly scrutinized, and the quality of law enforcement policy, training, and discretion is frequently found wanting.


Psy-op? People everywhere are needlessly shaking in their boots over the creepy clown phenomenon

© Getty Images/EyeEm
Just in time for Halloween, creepy clowns have been spotted all over the nation. My main question is this: why is everyone too terrified to fight back? They're clowns, for heaven's sake.It wouldn't be very difficult to end this ridiculous trend if everyone would stop getting sucked into the hysteria.

However, of late, "clown sightings" are occurring across the US. There has even been clown violence (a 16-year-old was stabbed by a creepy clown in Reading, Pennsylvania.) Social media is all abuzz with the latest clown fear frenzy. A humor book was published last fall, just ahead of the trend, called, "When Clowns Attack."


Okay, does anyone else find this kind of weird? Kind of contrived? I'm positive it isn't just me, because my friend, Melissa Melton, at Truthstream Media, clearly thought the same thing.

Is this just a weird social experiment? Is the media just spreading fear, and if so, to what avail? Are they trying to distract us from the approach of World War III? Truthstream Media investigated it.

Comment: More on the creepy clown madness: