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In an Appalling Act of Hypocrisy, NY Times Promotes Settlers as Peace Builders

By Barbara Erickson | TimesWarp | December 15, 2015

Gush Etzion Junction was a peaceful corner of the West Bank, according to The New York Times, until Palestinians ruined it with a series of attacks in the latest uprising. Such is the message in Isabel Kershner’s most recent attempt to whitewash Israel’s brutal and illegal occupation of Palestinian territory.

Readers are never reminded of the fact that Gush Etzion is an illegal Jewish-only settlement block located in the heart of the West Bank. Nor are they told that its presence means the loss of thousands of acres of land once vital to the livelihood of the indigenous Palestinians, the confiscation of water resources and a choking system of military checkpoints.

In her story today, Isabel Kershner makes no attempt to discern what Gush Etzion means to Palestinians, although it sprawls over a large tract of their heartland, on their confiscated hills and fields. She provides Gush Etzion’s Jewish history but says nothing of the Palestinian experience, and while listing recent attacks on Jews, she makes no mention of Palestinian injuries and deaths, which far exceed those of Israelis.

Her one attempt to provide a motive for Palestinian attacks is ludicrous: The junction has become a target because it is a “hub of coexistence.” Nothing is said about the crushing effects of the occupation, trigger-happy Israeli troops, the continuing confiscation of Palestinian land and the loss of hope.

She writes: “Jewish settler leaders have promoted the slightly shabby complex as a symbol of peaceful coexistence and evidence that Israelis and Palestinians can share the hotly contested territory.”

In other words, the settlers have the best of intentions. After stealing Palestinian land and water to build Jewish-only colonies, they insist that they want only to be good neighbors.

Kershner also makes a feeble effort to provide “balance,” bringing out her stock phrases to defend Israel’s crimes: “The Palestinians and much of the world consider all settlements in the territories seized in 1967 as illegal and an obstacle to establishing a Palestinian state.”

Much of the world. This is a duplicitous way to put it. In fact, the entire world opposes the settlements, even Israeli’s staunchest ally, the United States.

When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last year announced a huge land grab from Palestinian villages surrounding Gush Etzion, the world rushed to condemn the act. This is important context in any discussion of the block, but no mention of it appears in Kershner’s story.

Other factors undermine her claim of peaceful coexistence and good intentions from settler leaders. B’Tselem, the Israeli human rights monitoring group, has frequently charged that the Gush Etzion police station is notorious for torturing Palestinian teens in order to extract confessions. It has released reports over several years pointing to significant abuses in the heart of the settlement block.

Kershner makes much of the presence of Palestinian employees at Gush Etzion Junction and manages to quote one of them—at the end of her story—thus suggesting that it is a welcoming place, open and tolerant. The backstory, however, is more revealing. It can be found in this paragraph from The Economist, written after Netanyahu’s land grab announcement last year:

“Encircled by Mr Netanyahu’s latest appropriation, Palestinian residents of the bucolic village of Wadi Fukin have already lost all but 450 of the 3,000 acres they once had, and stand to lose more. The hillsides where the village’s 600 sheep and goats graze are set to go. Unable to farm, many men find work as builders, often on Jewish settlements nearby. They may yet be called upon to build homes for Israelis on land they regard as their own.”

Wadi Fukin is one of the villages destined to lose under the latest expansion of Gush Etzion. Its tragic tale and that of many others are entirely missing from the story in the Times today. In such a context-free effort, Kershner makes her claims of tolerant settlers and a peaceful oasis, and the result is an appalling act of hypocrisy and spin.

Follow @TimesWarp on Twitter.

December 15, 2015 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Israel Preventing Development of Palestinian Natural Gas Resources

December 15, 2015 Posted by | Corruption, Economics, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Video | , , , , | Leave a comment

US: Palestine Booted from NY Flag Display

teleSUR | December 14, 2015

A Palestinian flag has been removed from a street display in a town in New York State, after some residents expressed anti-Palestine sentiments.

A Palestine advocacy group condemned the removal Monday, saying it is part of a broader suppression of any recognition of Palestine.

The flag was removed from a major shopping corridor in Yonkers, NY earlier this month, after at least one public complaint. The flag was part of a display that included dozens of international flags, including the Israeli flag.

“At first glance, this incident is typical of the ‘Palestine exception to free speech.’ It exactly fits the pattern we’ve documented throughout the country,” Radhika Sainath, a staff attorney at Palestine Legal (PL) told teleSUR.

Palestine Legal provides legal aid to Palestine solidarity activists in the United States, and has warned of a growing campaign by pro-Israel groups to shut down discussion of Palestinian rights.

“When people express support for Palestine, or even acknowledge its existence, Israel advocates complain and our civic institutions are quick to respond by shutting down (free) speech,” Sainath said.

The flag was singled out by Yonkers residents who allegedly claimed Palestine is an enemy of the United States, according to one local reporter.

“Palestine is certainly not a friend of the United States,” columnist Eric Schoen told local news outlet

“A couple of people who brought it to my attention were quite upset,” Schoen said.

The business group that oversees the shopping corridor, the South Broadway Business Improvement District, has maintained the flag was taken down as it didn’t represent a sovereign state.

However, the corridor also boasts the flag of Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory.

Palestine Legal has argued the flag’s removal mirrors similar incidents nationwide.

“Earlier this year, Lincolnwood, Illinois canceled its annual diversity month over the inclusion of a Palestinian flag in the celebration,” Palestine Legal said in a statement to teleSUR.

As far back as 2013, another incident allegedly occurred at a Texas high school, when according to Palestine Legal, “School administrators told Palestinian student Malak Abdallahi she could not carry her flag during a during a traditional ceremony where students carry their nation’s flag.”

“She later won the right to carry the flag,” they noted.

Palestine Legal also recently published a report documenting what it concluded is a nationwide campaign to suppress Palestinian rights advocacy on university campuses.

In an interview with teleSUR ahead of the report’s release, Palestine Legal Director Dima Khalidi warned that Palestine solidarity activists can face “substantial” blowback from institutions and student groups for their advocacy.

“It can harm their reputation, it can harm their employment prospects, it can lead to bullying, racial attacks and even law enforcement scrutiny,” Khalidi said.

December 15, 2015 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Timeless or most popular | , , , | 2 Comments


By John Chuckman | Aletho News | December 15, 2015

I think it entirely possible Donald Trump could be elected President. I am not in favor of it – but then neither am I in favor of any of the other candidates on offer – yet I do think his election is increasingly possible. America displays every four years – almost like a temporary clothesline erected on the front lawn of the White House loaded with soiled and tattered undergarments – the sheer poverty of its political system. Every four years, a gang of mediocrities and thugs spend vast amounts of money to say, from coast to coast, nothing worth hearing.

Sometimes I wonder why anyone bothers to run for office in a long, costly, and exhausting contest which if won means four years of taking directions from the Pentagon and seventeen security agencies. America is not a democracy, and the last president who actually tried to exert some significant influence on affairs left much of the right side of his head in the streets of Dallas. But ego is a mighty powerful motivator, and the gang engaged in national American politics has plenty of it, even if few other redeeming qualities.

Trump could make Hillary Clinton regret she ever shared a stage to debate with him, especially a Hillary Clinton whose past has finally begun to catch up with her, now finally wounded by her long record of dark intrigues and vicious lies. Trump is no angel by comparison, but his focus has been on making money and aggrandizing his name, things most Americans respect. He has no political record for which to account or apologize.

He has said many things which make him sound like a juvenile given to insulting people’s appearances, and he has some proposals which would prove impossible for anyone to implement, yet somehow he has hit on some issues which find a welcome hearing by many, especially unsophisticated people who might even once have been Democratic voters. Americans are tired of unresponsive politicians, something of which they have stables full. They are also tired of the bewildering events in a world at the center of which invariably the United States finds itself. Most Americans never voted for such things and have no interest in them. Only dishonest appeals about supporting the troops keep them from rebelling, and their own increasingly difficult economic lives generate a lot of stress. America is full of frustrated and angry people, many of them not even sure what it is they are so angry about and many of whom have no time or patience to understand the world in which they live. Hard-hitting simplicities are music to the ears.

One of the sharpest ironies of Trump is that not all of his views are simplicities. Some are dead-on assessments of things which could have been avoided and leaders who failed the country. So this man comes bundled with a wide-ranging group of political goods, far more so than anyone I can recall in recent times. Just think of the simple-minded recitals of senior American politician after senior American politician. They all sound rather like Sarah Palin reciting her money-generated mantra but with differing levels of sophistication and vocabulary. She is the basic template while other models come with little tweaks and feature, but they all say nothing worth hearing. There is a very real reason for that: under America’s establishment-run, aristocratic political system, there is almost zero latitude for change either in domestic or foreign affairs, except in the field of war where more seems always welcome.

No matter what you think of Trump’s views – and the author should confess he is not an admirer of most of them – many people find it utterly refreshing to hear him touch subjects none of the usual Washington politicians touch. He goes far beyond the pathetic high-school recitation of lines by Sarah Palin. Or, I might add, the paid lies of men like Newt Gingrich and scores of others who will literally speak in absurdities in return for multi-million dollar campaign contributions. I only mention Newt because the last time he tried to campaign, he ran around the country saying there really was no such thing as a Palestinian, his quid pro quo for nearly twenty million dollars in funds from a man with claustrophobic ties to Israel.

Just think of the all the bland, say-nothing-worth-hearing types, epitomized by Jeb Bush who resembles nothing so much as a well-groomed hamster both in the sounds he makes and in his blinking-into-the-camera, insipid-smile looks. And think of all the grotesque liars who run for high office in America never telling people what really motivates or enables them or what special interests pay their way. It all really is a parody of democracy.

You might think a brash and independent-minded guy like Trump is just the answer to changing some of that, and I can well understand the hopes, but there are very powerful barriers in American society as it now has come to be organized against such hopes being realized. The first day of sitting at a huge polished conference table, greatly outnumbered by arrogant country-club security chiefs with secret budgets you cannot imagine and rigid generals whose uniforms glitter almost like Christmas trees, might just test the mettle of a Trump. Add to that the heads of great corporations each worth hundreds of billions of dollars making private appointments. And then the polished heads of mighty special interest lobby groups used to getting their way. And just who are your allies and confidants in opposing some of the things they demand? You have no political background from which you would have built such relations.

It’s a daunting and dreary picture, and you have to remember, these powerful people who compose the formidable American aristocracy are the very ones who allowed and encouraged the ugly situations into which America is straight-jacketed.

Despite Trump’s freshness and energy, a Trump victory could prove a disaster. Not because he would flirt with atomic war, something Obama now already does regularly, or create vast new domestic schemes. Of course, the scheme of building a fence across Mexico and rounding up and returning all illegal migrants is vast indeed – a virtual moon-landing project from scratch – but this author thinks it would fortunately prove impossible. Even if the American aristocracy permitted him to pursue such a Don Quixote project, it would only be in order to gain his compliance in other, far more important and consequential matters such as the vast, destabilizing, and murderous wars in the Middle East and the bullying of Russia and China.

On top of all that, Trump has made some deadly serious enemies, and number one on the list is Israel and its supporters who view him as not adequately friendly to Israel’s interests.

When Trump, for example, speaks, entirely sensibly, about leaving Syria for Putin to sort out, he goes dead against a dark and costly scheme which was in part created by Israel. They want Assad dead. They want Syria Balkanized much as Iraq is. And they are enjoying the stolen, discount-priced oil they get indirectly from ISIS through Turkey.

And they don’t want Russia gaining genuine influence in the Mideast, the United States being Israel’s source of seemingly inexhaustible assistance, permission, and protection – the provider of vast subsidies of every kind imaginable. Moreover, Netanyahu and other leaders in Israel have long striven to have Israel assume a geopolitical role in the Mideast as a kind of miniature replica of what the United States is in the world, a bully hegemon. There’s no room in that picture for Russia.

If you read the kind of columnists who regularly serve as apologists for Israel’s brutality – there’s at least one filling that role on the staff of every mainline newspaper – you find a universally negative attitude towards Trump. It has nothing to do with conservatism versus liberalism, and it certainly has nothing to do with human rights. The columnists use words about human rights to make their view more palatable to the general population of readers and to serve as a smokescreen for what it is with which they are really defending.

After all, Israel’s Netanyahu is perhaps the world’s most flagrant violator of human rights, holding about five million people completely against their will with absolutely no rights or freedoms, periodically stealing their homes and land, violating the sanctity of their religious places, and frequently just killing large batches of them – always undoubtedly with an eye to making them so miserable that they will pick up and leave. The people of Gaza are not even allowed to import cement to repair Israel’s recent destruction of their homes and institutions. I simply do not know of crueler circumstances in the world completely tolerated by America’s aristocracy.

There have been several ugly outbursts recently, including one from an executive of Colorado’s American Civil Liberties Union who was yelling about assassinating Trump voters, words I just could not believe when I first read them.

But then in past years we have had extremist defenders of Israel propose many horrible measures including one from an American lawyer who proposed summarily killing the entire families of any Palestinian acting as a “terrorist,” so the raving speech is not without precedent. The executive’s words communicate the intense level of hate which simmers. I am sure this disturbed man – since forced to quit – is not the only one with such thoughts bubbling like sewerage through his mind.

Always admirers of political hamsters and gerbils as candidates with dark eminences behind them doing the necessary filth, the Bush-Cheney model if you will, or indeed the Eisenhower-Dulles or Reagan-Casey one – the Republicans will make every effort to stop Trump with backstage political manipulations, such as a brokered convention, but they may well not succeed, his position being made quite strong by the possibility of his running as a third-party candidate, and one with huge financial resources to boot.

But if they fail, and he wins, look out for the darkest possibilities.

All this is quite terrible, but that is simply what America is today, terrible.

December 15, 2015 Posted by | Militarism, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

UN closes case into alleged Iranian quest for nukes

RT | December 15, 2015

Iran moved another step away from international isolation after the UN’s nuclear watchdog announced on Tuesday it was closing a probe into whether Tehran sought to obtain nuclear weapons.

The decision was made by the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as it looks to move forward with a nuclear deal signed by Iran and six world powers on July 14, which is supposed to see Tehran curb its nuclear program in return for economic sanctions being lifted.

IAEA official Yukiya Amano said his investigation could not “reconstruct all the details of activities conducted by Iran in the past.”

The decision means the 12-year investigation will now finally be closed, as the West had believed for over a decade that Tehran was striving to produce nuclear weapons. One diplomat who attended the meeting said the decision was reached by consensus, with all those attending in favor.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif applauded the move.

“We welcome the closure of the investigation of Iran’s past nuclear activities … the resolution by the board of governors of the agency … shows the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear program,” the Tasnim news agency quoted Zarif as saying.

Iran says it will start implementing restrictions concerning its nuclear activities within the next two-to-three weeks.

“We are intending to complete this process within two-to-three weeks, so accelerate the implementation day as soon as possible,” Iranian envoy to the IAEA Reza Najafi stated, as cited by Reuters.

Meanwhile, Iranian nuclear negotiator Abbas Araqchi said he believes that economic sanctions against Tehran could be lifted within the next three weeks, following the decision made by the IAEA.

Iran issued a warning to the IAEA in November that if the nuclear probe was not closed, they risked Tehran abandoning the international atomic deal signed in July.

Ali Shamkhani, the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, said that the closure of the case was a necessary prerequisite for the full implementation of the nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 nations.

Under the nuclear deal, Tehran agreed to put major curbs on its atomic program, particularly its enrichment of uranium to high purities. In return, all nuclear-related sanctions imposed by the US, the EU and the UN are to be lifted.

December 15, 2015 Posted by | Economics, Wars for Israel | , , | Leave a comment

Turkey: Everyone Needs A Way Out

By Henry Kamens – New Eastern Outlook – 15.12.2015

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the well-known fan of air defence systems, is facing impeachment for an endless list of crimes. We have only got to this point because he is probably guilty of most of them.

The Speaker of Parliament, accountable to parliament and not government, has the authority to unveil official documents concerning his actions which have been hidden until now. If that happens, it is very likely that Erdogan’s rule will come to an abrupt end, simply because the list of charges is so long that even if only 10% can be proven that will be enough to sink him.

Many unofficial sources are claiming that Erdogan is going mad at hearing that the nation is no longer following him. Even former supporters who stood by him when he was accused of corruption are now leaving him. Erdogan is blaming all this on his former American aide, the Islamist Sai Baba Fethullah Gulen, the leader of a worldwide movement which is halfway between a faith organization and bunch of jack-of-all-trade agents active from China to the US. But it is not Gulen but Erdogan himself who is the object of criticism, and it would come as no surprise if documents released by his own comrades brought about his downfall.

Big statements

One of the issues these documents might talk about is the bomb massacre at a rally in Ankara which made world news. Prime Minister Davutoglu has claimed that two suicide bombers committed this attack on behalf of both ISIL and the PKK, the Kurdish separatist movement, working together.

This claim smears all the Turkish public’s bogeymen at once, but is highly unlikely to be true. Many of the people taking part in the rally were Kurds, it having been organised by the democratic Kurdish party, the HDP. The Turkish government is keen to draw a distinction between ordinary Kurds, and their democratic representatives, and PKK terrorists. This is the basis of the accusation that the PKK must have planned the attack.

But the PKK knows it does not have the strength to destroy the HDP, or take full control of the Kurdish independence movement. It also knows that when a longstanding grievance is resolved by political means the more radical elements gain more public support if they then join the political process. In Northern Ireland, for example, the moderate Republican and Unionist parties dominated their communities until peace was achieved, but then the more extreme parties displaced them as soon as they renounced violence, being seen as stronger voices for their people.

The PKK is also fighting ISIL in the hottest combat regions and is fundamentally opposed to it ideologically. It has more to gain by helping Turkey and the US defeat ISIL, in exchange for a Kurdish state at the end of it, than trying to overthrow a Turkish government which retains international support due to the country’s strategic location. A Kurdish state would be an appropriate thank you for the “moderate Kurdish” contribution to the war on terrorism, granted willingly and with public support, providing a get-out for all sides in that conflict.

Word on the street in Ankara is that the terrorist bombing was the work of the local special services, not ISIL, and probably acting with foreign support. In this view, its purpose was to rally the nation round Erdogan, the face of law and order. However, his refusal to make an official statement about the Ankara bombing for days suggests he has spurned the opportunity allegedly provided him.

Erdogan was elected on a platform of reviving the Golden Age, whenever that was, and making Turkey great again. But he is now putting at risk the economic strength and regional political clout which have become effective levers for doing just that. This is causing many to question his conduct over a number of other matters, which the general thrust of his policy and success enabled him to get away with before. With the idea of being imprisoned keeping him awake at night, Erdogan may well be tempted to resort to measures such as murdering his own citizens to maintain his hold on power, like many another isolated ruler before him.

Ivory towers

The embattled leader has tried to shore up his position by using another well-worn tactic of leaders under pressure – engaging in foreign diplomacy, which opposition groups can’t do, to show his superiority. But when Angela Merkel – who despises him, and doesn’t try to hide the fact – visited Turkey for multilateral talks on immigration and stopping the flood of migrants to Europe, this was seen as nothing more than a political stunt, on her part as well as his, as she has no intention of pulling out of the wars which are creating these migrants.

Erdogan also piled more pressure on himself by his approach to the talks. He complained that the 3 billion EUR the EU has offered to help Turkey take tougher measures against immigration is much less than Turkey is spending on caring for refugees at present. However, it is widely known that Turkey is encouraging, not stopping, the flow of migrants to Europe so that they can be used as a political weapon whenever suitable. This demonstrates that, having failed to get into the EU by fair, diplomatic means, Erdogan is happy to resort to foul ones. It is this which forms the substance of the documents the Turkish parliament, and his colleagues, might now release.

Paper castles

As in Kazakhstan, governments can get away with a lot if their economies are booming. Its previous economic strength had encouraged Turkey to bid for regional leadership, which every country which has had an empire believes is theirs as of right. But now the Turkish currency is in deep crisis. Last May the official exchange rate was 3.5 Turkish Lira to the British Pound, but this August it was 4.7. This steep decline has made the TL the worst-performing currency in the emerging global economies, and is making entrepreneurs’ lives impossible.

Turkey has few primary resources and suffers from a deep technological gap. Consequently, it cannot produce most of the components industry needs. These have to be imported, processed and then exported to pay for their importation, and with the local currency so weak it is very expensive and not competitive to do this. The new Russian sanctions will cause even more problems.

The high rate of inflation, apparently the product of heavy printing by the central bank, will soon make several businesses go bankrupt. Public debt is also rising, and is calculated in dollars, making Turkey very vulnerable to interest rate decisions made across the Atlantic. Far from being a regional leader, Turkey has become the modern financial world’s equivalent of a banana republic. Its current political position has been given it as a sop, to keep it onside until the time comes to pull the rug from under it.

Emperor’s new clothes

All this is laying bare the fact that it is time to “Talk Turkey” about Turkey. It has always been a US ally because of where it is, not for any other reason. The US doesn’t want it as a trusted ally, or really care about it.

Turkey is traditionally a foe of what is now the political West, which fought wars to liberate Europe from the Ottoman yoke and to keep modern Turkey from allying with Hitler in World War Two. It was made part of the West to stop the Communists, who had encircled it, getting their hands on its strategic ports.

But the West has never liked Turkey or what it does, despite its consistent praise of “improvements” in its continually vicious internal politics or its “support” of US ambitions. It’s not seen as a Western country but a military base in hostile territory, which the West has no choice but to indulge as far as possible.

This grudging indulgence has always been part of broader US calculations in the region. Several years ago Georgia was made the US forward operating base in the region partly because it wanted a way out of Turkey. Georgia isn’t big enough to play this role all the time, but its previous government was nasty enough to let the US do whatever it wanted, including murder, torture, training terrorists and manufacturing and exporting biological weapons, so that some of the reasons it needed Turkey no longer applied.

Now the US operation has moved to Ukraine, and a lot of the nasty Georgians with it. Ukraine does have the size, military capacity and strategic location to replace Turkey to a large degree. At this stage there are still too many vested interests for the US to just walk away from Turkey. But with everybody else also wanting out, how long will Erdogan be able to bank on this remaining truth?

Former Georgian President Saakashvili, who always said he would be back without the need for elections, was recently caught on tape plotting a coup which would be conducted from Turkey. Saakashvili is arrogant enough to think that he can say what he wants without being called to account, but not so stupid as to be caught in such a way by routine methods. These tapes were made somehow, most probably by “protectors” for whom he, like Turkey, has become a deep embarrassment.

Crashing and burning

Those tapes give the West a convenient way out of both Saakashvili’s gang and Turkey, which have now outlived their usefulness. They were one of the reasons Turkey shot down the Russian plane. But this action has provided another reason for Erdogan to be removed, as it was politically inexpedient, a violation of international law and presents Turkey as a supporter of a terrorist organisation, giving the West ample reason to interfere in its affairs yet again.

If Russia responds to the attack militarily NATO is obliged to defend Turkey. However NATO is now trying like hell to avoid expanding to its east, despite the number of countries knocking on its door, precisely because it doesn’t want to find itself obliged to send its forces to these countries. NATO cannot get sucked into war with Russia, or reconstitute the Turkish state, which is not homogeneous to begin with?

The French are fond of talking about their “Fifth Republic”, meaning the state established in 1958, when its current constitution was adopted. France existed before then of course, but under different constitutions and political arrangements. On each occasion, the old France collapsed and was thrown into the dustbin and replaced by a new one, even though it was physically the same country. Erdogan might well achieve his longed-for place in history by being the last president of THIS Turkish Republic, even though it will mean “crashing and burning” with it.

December 15, 2015 Posted by | Deception, Economics, False Flag Terrorism | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Attack on Freedom: Activists to Take Spain to ECHR Over ‘Gag Law’

Sputnik – 14.12.2015

A group of lawyers and journalists are taking Spain to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) over the country’s controversial “gag law,” which activists say is an attack on freedom of speech and information rights.

The coalition of activists, known as ‘Defender a quien defiende’ (DqD) launched a triple lawsuit with the ECHR, calling for the immediate repeal of the law.

The highly controversial Citizen Security Law, dubbed the ‘gag law’ by critics, was passed by the governing Popular Party (PP) earlier this year and came into action in July, despite widespread protests and demonstrations.

DqD has labeled the law “authoritarian,” with critics arguing that it restricts the right to legitimate protest and allows authorities to harshly crack down on any form of anti-government demonstration.

Under the law, the vague description of “disrespecting a police officer” can attract a fine of US$662 (€600), while those guilty of staging an “unauthorized protest” can be hit with financial penalties as high as US$662,000 (€600,000).

Many photojournalists have taken aim at the law, which also makes it illegal to photograph a police officer, with many arguing that it severely affects their ability to do their job.

DqD argues that such provisions “violate” basic freedoms, expressions and the right to protest, in turn restricting journalists and photojournalists from subsequently sharing certain pieces of information with the public.

“They are particularly affected since the law jeopardizes their main function: to report on events of public relevance,” the lawsuit states.

Photojournalists are “obliged by police to stop filming or photographing police actions for fear of being penalized,” the lawsuit says, amid fears that it may allow instances of police misconduct to go undocumented and unreported.

The law has already attracted controversy since it came into effect in July after a man was fined US$662 (€600) for calling police “slackers” on social media.

In another controversial instance a woman was fined US$883 (€800) for taking a photo of a police car parked illegally in a disabled zone, however the fine was later scrapped.

The timing of the ECHR lawsuit, which is to be officially launched with a press conference on Tuesday, comes at a critical time for the ruling controversial Popular Party (PP) ahead of the country’s December 20 election.

All three major opposition parties have vowed to scrap the highly unpopular law if they win power, with some analysts saying the controversy around the matter could influence swing voters who remain undecided on who to vote for in the national election.

December 15, 2015 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Corruption, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | Leave a comment

Israel funding Daesh terrorists: Trump

Press TV – December 15, 2015

US Republican frontrunner Donald Trump has implied that Israel is supporting Daesh (ISIL) by “sending massive amounts of money” to the Takfiri terrorists in Syria and Iraq.

Trump made the remarks in a recent interview with the Morning Joe show, shortly before he cancelled his trip to Israel.

“Some of our so-called allies that we work with and that we protect militarily, they are sending massive amounts of money to ISIS and to al-Qaeda and to others,” he said, using an alternative acronym for the terrorist group.

Asked about who he was talking about, Trump said “you know who it is. What do I have to bring it up for? You know who it is.”

He said that he will not mention US allies which support Daesh because of his relationship with Israelis, but noted that no one talks about Israel, even though everyone is aware of support Israel and other states provide to ISIL.

“There are, but I’m not gonna say it, because I have a lot of relationships with people. But there are. And you know that. And everybody knows that. And nobody says it. Nobody talks about it,” Trump said.

The multi-billionaire businessman said the US government knows about it, suggesting checking records to insure his claims are true.

“All you have to do is check your records. Our government knows the countries,” he stated.

On Thursday, Trump cancelled his plan to visit Israel, saying he would reschedule “at a later date after I become President of the US.”

One reason he mentioned why he had called off his visit was that he did not want to put Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “under pressure.”

Trump’s campaign has been marked by controversy from the start, but he leads the GOP field with 33 percent support among Republican primary voters.

According to American writer Mickey Z., “It’s always interesting when Donald Trump peels away a propaganda layer to offer a tiny glimpse at the corporate-political brotherhood.”

December 15, 2015 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , | 6 Comments