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Mon, 30 May 2016
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Gaza family mourns loss of 3 young children who burned to death from tipped candle (Video)

© AFP/Mohammed Abed
The mother of the Abu Hindi family (L) mourns during the funeral of three of her sons who died in a fire caused by a candle at the family home, at the al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza City on May 7, 2016.
On May 7, 2016, fire broke out in the Abu al-Hindi home in Gaza's Shati (Beach) refugee camp. Started by a tipped candle, the flames grew quickly grew out of control.

Three children, Yusra, 3, Rahaf, 2, and Nasser, 6 months, perished in the burning house, and Muhannad, 8, was severely burned. Ali, 6, is the only survivor without physical injuries but lives with deep psychological trauma.

Neighbors attempted to rescue the children by breaking a hole through the wall, but by the time they could reach the children, it was too late.

The fire is a direct result of severe electricity shortages due to the ongoing and tightening Israeli/Egyptian since and repeated Israeli military assaults.

In April, Gaza's sole power plant ran out of fuel. Prior to that, the power plant was working at partial capacity due to repeated Israeli military attacks since 2006. This has only been exacerbated by political infighting between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas.

Since the beginning of 2016, the Palestinian Authority, which is dominated by Fatah, has gradually lifted fuel tax exemptions to Gaza's power plant and imposed a 'blue tax', rendering the power plant unable to purchase fuel and further forcing Gaza's residents to rely on candlelight.

Deadly candle fires have occurred repeatedly since Israel imposed the siege in 2006. Since 2010, 29 Palestinians, mostly children, have died in home fires.


Comment: All of this - the pain, suffering and heartbreak - just so the psychopaths running Israel can lay claim to a piece of real estate. It's truly horrifying.


Arrow Up

60% of Americans can't stand Trump or Clinton

US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton are both disliked or even hated by nearly 60 percent of Americans, a new poll has found.

According to the latest NBC News/SurveyMonkey tracking poll which was published on Tuesday, 37 percent of the participants said they "dislike" Clinton while 39 percent had the same feeling about Trump.

This is while 21 percent said they "hate" the former first lady and 24 percent expressed the same sentiment toward the New York businessman.

In terms of support among voters, Clinton led Trump by a small 4-point margin, 47 percent to 43 percent.

The poll's findings highlight the two candidates' issue of favorability among voters after another ABC News suggested earlier this week that they were the least popular candidates to ever run for the White House.

Comment: American 'democracy': the institution that empowers the scum of the earth to rise up to the top in all their scum-like glory. The majority of Americans can't stand either of these creatures, yet one will be the next president. How absurd! If over the past decade any Americans have held out in their faith of this deeply corrupt system, perhaps this election season will finally cure them of their fantastical delusions.


Eye 1

'Obsessed' pharmacist drugged co-worker 23 times for rejecting sexual advances

© 9 News
Yan Chi 'Anthony' Cheung (centre in hooded top) pleaded guilty to poisoning offences at Waverley Local Court in Sydney
A pharmacist from Sydney has pleaded guilty to spiking the drink of a colleague 23 times over the space of a year because she rejected his sexual overtures. The defendant would slip the drugs into his victim's coffee or water, leaving her feeling drowsy.

Yan Chi 'Anthony' Cheung pleaded guilty at the court hearing in Australia on Tuesday of putting phenergan, doxylamine, endep, deptran and seruguel, in his 26-year-old colleague's drinks.

The 35-year-old would spike Pamela Leung's drink every couple of weeks and this carried on for one year. The pair worked together at a pharmacy on the University of New South Wales' campus.

"During their employment together the accused began making sexual advances towards the victim, rough brushing past her breasts, buttocks and hands," court documents said, as cited by 7 News.

"The victim felt as though [Cheung] became obsessed with her," the statement added.

Attention

Masked provocateurs: Belgian police clash with anti-austerity protesters at 60,000-strong rally in Brussels

© Eric Vidal / Reuters
Belgian riot police deployed water cannons to disperse a major anti-austerity demonstration attended by tens of thousands of people in central Brussels. At least two policemen and several protesters have been injured.

Brussels' main commissioner Pierre Vandersmissen was among the injured along with another policeman, local media reports citing Brussels police department.

Initially peaceful the rally that gathered some 60,000 people turned violent after a group of around 100 masked activists broke away from the main rally and started throwing objects at police and vandalizing publicity boards near Brussels South Station. Clashes broke out and police intervened using water cannons and - reportedly - tear gas. Reports say at least 10 people have been arrested so far.

Security measures were reinforced prior to Tuesday's demonstration since the Brussels bombings two months ago.

Health

Woman who was climbing Everest in bid to prove 'vegans can do anything' dies

A 34-year-old Australian woman who attempted to climb Mount Everest to prove that vegans are not 'malnourished and weak' has died.
© Agencias
Maria Strydom and her husband.
University lecturer Maria Strydom perished from a lack of oxygen in Nepal on Saturday afternoon after having to turn back from the final leg of her expedition because she felt unwell.

She, along with her husband Robert Gropel, challenged themselves to overcome Everest to show that 'vegans can do anything'.

Dr Strydom had said that climbing Everest while adhering to a strict vegan diet was their 'own personal Everest.'

According to The Washington Post, on an university blog she said: 'It seems that people have this warped idea of vegans being malnourished and weak.' 'By climbing the seven summits we want to prove that vegans can do anything and more.'

Comment: The vegetarian diet is completely anti-physiological. Knowledge protects, ignorance endangers:


Laptop

Hacker Guccifer expected to plead guilty for Clinton email hack

© Mediafax / Silviu Matei / Reuters
Marcel Lazar Lehel
The Romanian computer hacker known as Guccifer, who allegedly accessed the email account of an adviser to Hillary Clinton, is expected to plead guilty to charges related to breaking into the computers of top US political personalities.

Computer hacker Marcel Lazar Lehel is expected to appear in federal court on Wednesday for a change-of-plea deal, according to court records obtained by the Associated Press. The 44-year-old Romanian was extradited to the US in March to face charges including unauthorized access to computers, cyberstalking, and obstruction of justice.

Lehel had originally pleaded not guilty to the charges last month, and it's not clear what charges he will plead guilty to.

Lehel was indicted in 2014 on nine felony charges of him hacking into the email accounts of top US politicians. Emails between former Secretary of State Colin Powell and Corina Cretu, a Romanian member of the European Parliament, were released, prompting Powell to deny that the two had had an affair. A set of former Hillary Clinton adviser Sidney Blumenthal's emails were published online in 2013, which exposed a private email address that Clinton used when serving as Secretary of State.

Comment: The authorities should be charging Clinton and throwing her in jail. Guccifer was only doing a public service by shedding light on Clinton's illegal behavior and giving the world a chance to see Clinton indicted and jailed.


Star of David

VIDEO: Off-duty Israeli cops brutally beat Arabic teen for not showing ID despite not identifying themselves as police

© איריס אלנר / YouTube
Controversial CCTV footage allegedly shows plainclothes Israeli police officers pouncing on an "Arab-Israeli" next to a Tel Aviv supermarket. Eyewitnesses say the man ended up brutally beaten and arrested after he refused to show ID to an off-duty cop.

The incident, which was captured by a security camera and first published by local Israeli media including Walla news, reportedly occurred outside an Arab supermarket on Ibn Gvirol Street in central Tel Aviv on Sunday afternoon.

An employee of Arab appearance walked out of the shop and was about to throw garbage into the bin when he was approached by an off-duty policeman clad in shorts, who asked to see his ID card. The shop worker refused to comply with the request.

The plainclothes officer, later confirmed to be a member of the border police, then reportedly began to beat the unarmed man with the help of a companion without any further pretext, eyewitness Erez Krispin wrote in a Facebook post, which has since gone viral. The Arab employee is said to have been unable to comply, as his ID was inside the shop. He also had no way of knowing that the man asking for his ID was an officer.


Handcuffs

Guantanamo prisoner released after 14 years despite never standing trial

© Marc Serota / Reuters
An Afghan man who was charged with war crimes but never stood trial - and who eventually had the charges dropped - has been cleared for release by US authorities after 14 years behind bars at the prison complex in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The decision to clear the detainee, known only by the name Obaidullah, was made by the Periodic Review Board, which holds hearings for detainees in order to determine whether they qualify for release. In this case, the board stated that continued detention "does not remain necessary to protect against a continuing significant threat to the security of the United States."


Comment: Since the prisoner was never actually charged with a crime, it's rather ludicrous to determine that he's a threat to the security of the United States. They would have to actually provide evidence of that.


"The risk the detainee presents can be adequately mitigated," the board added.

Believed to be about 36 years old now, Obaidullah was captured back in July 2002 in Afghanistan, where US forces found unactivated land mines buried near his home in the eastern city of Khost. According to Defense Department documents, Obaidullah was allegedly part of an Al-Qaeda cell in Khost, involved in the planning and carrying out of attacks against US and Coalition forces. The Defense Department alleged he had links to a high-ranking Al-Qaeda and considered him a high-risk target.

Quenelle

Gorbachev on Soviet collapse: US was elated over Russia's decade of chaos, wasn't remotely interested in helping build stable democracy

© Ramil Sitdikov / Sputnik
Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev
In an interview with Mark Franchetti from Britain's Sunday Times, the Soviet Unions's last leader Mikhail Gorbachev was as honest as we have seen him, as he reflected on the end of the Cold War, and the reasons for new US-Russian tensions.

In remembering the the US reaction to the Soviet Union's dissolution in 1991, Gorbachev admitted that...
"Under the table, the Americans were rubbing their hands with glee."

"They thought, 'Now we're the boss of the world.' They weren't genuinely interested in helping Russia develop into a stable and strong democracy. They thought they'd cut Russia down to size. In the process, they've squandered the trust we'd built."
American elation, for what the US perceived as a Cold War victory, was in Gorbachev's opinion juxtaposed with a feeling of sorrow from the Russian side. Gorbachev said that Russians still feel sorry about the collapse, though few, including himself, would support the idea of bringing the Soviet Union back.

Comment: Of course the US wasn't interested in helping Russia develop a strong democracy. At no time in the past 100 years has the US promoted legitimate forms of democracy around the world - rather they topple elected governments, impose fascist dictators, and otherwise spread terror in the name of freedom.

Further reading: The New York Times has totally lost the plot on Russia


Sherlock

Egypt's head of forensics denies reports of explosion and human remains retrieved from missing EgyptAir Flight 804

© AFP
Debris that the search teams found in the sea after the EgyptAir Airbus A320 crashed in the Mediterranean, released by the Egyptian military spokesperson on May 21, 2016
Egypt's head of forensics has denied reports that human remains retrieved from the Mediterranean Sea and examined by a team of experts point to an explosion taking place on board flight 804, which crashed on Thursday.

"Everything published about this matter is completely false, and mere assumptions that did not come from the Forensics Authority," state news agency MENA quoted forensics head Hesham Abdelhamid as saying.

Earlier on Tuesday, an official who had personally examined the remains at a Cairo morgue told AP on condition of anonymity that "the logical explanation is that it was an explosion."

The source went on to state that the experts had been given around 80 small body parts to investigate. "There isn't even a whole body part, like an arm or a head," the official said.