Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Overnight Music Video - Survivor - Burning heart.

Video - The Obama/Holder Justice Department: Moving toward criminalizing criticism of Islam?





The Obama/Holder INJustice Department: Moving toward criminalizing criticism of Islam?(HSUS).During the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Constitution oversight hearing held on Wednesday, July 25, 2012,
Assistant U.S. Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division, Thomas Perez, refused to answer Congressman Trent Franks question whether the Holder Justice Department’s agenda includes the abrogation of a U.S. citizen’s right to free speech by making it a criminal offense to merely criticize Islam.
The two-and-a-half minute exchange took place about 23 minutes into the hearing, when Congressman Franks asked Perez a simple, direct question whether his department was essentially considering criminalizing speech critical of a particular religion.
He prefaced his question by recounting Perez’ attendance at the meeting and his favorable response to Aziz’ prompts to make any critical talk or writings against Islam a criminal offense, despite American’s current enjoyment of such protection under the First Amendment.

“If the Department of Justice can’t even answer whether they will entertain or advance a proposal that criminalizes speech against any religion, then it’s pretty late in the day.” ~ Congressman Trent Franks.

It’s clear that the Obama/Holder Department of Justice has aligned themselves with the Islamist agenda, and is proactively attacking our freedoms under the First Amendment.Read the full story here.

Video - Hitler's Reaction to the Watts Study (Global Warming Scam exposed).

Income, Asset Limits Ignored To Qualify More For Food Stamps.



Income, Asset Limits Ignored To Qualify More 'potential Dem Voters' For Food Stamps.(JW).As if it weren’t bad enough that a record number of people—46 million and growing—get food stamps from the U.S. government, a federal audit reveals that many who don’t qualify receive them under a special “broad-based” eligibility program that disregards income and asset requirements.
As a result American taxpayers are getting stuck with a multi-million-dollar tab to feed hundreds of thousands who can well afford to feed themselves. Here is the nutshell version of how it came to this; the Obama Administration has promoted food stamps like there’s no tomorrow, asserting that it’s the government’s duty to eradicate “food insecure households.”
In the last few years the administration has spent millions of dollars on ad campaigns to recruit more food-stamp recipients, even doling out hefty cash rewards to local governments that sign up the most people. One state even bragged about a $5 million performance bonus it got from the feds for its “swift processing of applications.”
As a result a record 46.3 million people—including some illegal immigrants—get taxpayer-funded food stamps at an annual cost of $76 billion, according to the agency that distributes the welfare benefit, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). This represents an increase of more than 16 million over the previous year, according to USDA figures. It’s only a matter of time before an out-of-control government program like this becomes infested with fraud and corruption.
A few months ago the USDA’s Inspector General revealed that many food-stamp recipients use their welfare benefit to buy drugs, weapons and other contraband from unscrupulous vendors. Some trade food stamps for reduced amounts of cash. The fraud has cost taxpayers nearly $200 million, according to the USDA watchdog, who provided various examples during testimony before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.The previously mentioned federal audit, conducted by the investigative arm of Congress, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), found that 473,000 households that received food stamps were not even eligible under federal standards. In one year alone this cost taxpayers about $460 million, according to the probe which suggests “improved oversight.”
Here is another enraging figure included in the GAO report; in the last decade the food stamp program has more than doubled and costs have quadrupled because the government has essentially encouraged states to disregard household income and asset limits required to qualify for the assistance. This is called “broad-based categorical eligibility.Hmmmm.....Another 'Obamination'.Read the full story here.

Ancient Human Metropolis from 160,000 to 200,000 BCE Found in Africa!


Ancient Human Metropolis from 160,000 to 200,000 BCE Found in Africa!(TTBTS).The image above is a close-up view of just a few hundred meters of the landscape taken from google-earth. The region is somewhat remote and the “circles” have often been encountered by local farmers who assumed they were made by some indigenous people in the past. The area is significant for one striking thing — gold. Looking at the entire metropolis, it becomes obvious that this was a well planned community, developed by a highly evolved civilization. The number of ancient gold mines suggests the reason for the community being in this location. We find roads — some extending a hundred miles — that connected the community and terraced agriculture, closely resembling those found in the Inca settlements in Peru. Looking at the entire metropolis, it becomes obvious that this was a well planned community, developed by a highly evolved civilization. The area is significant for one striking thing — gold. “The thousands of ancient gold mines discovered over the past 500 years, points to a vanished civilization that lived and dug for gold in this part of the world for thousands of years.” The number of ancient gold mines suggests the reason for the community being in this location. We find roads — some extending a hundred miles — that connected the community and terraced agriculture, closely resembling those found in the Inca settlements in Peru.Hmmmm......The Sumerians invented writing c. 3300 BC, initially in a pictographic form, but later in a style known as cuneiform – a curious system of wedge-shaped signs, which were impressed into clay tablets using a stylus. These clay tablets relate an amazing story – of gods who created the heavens and the Earth, and physically descended to the Earth at the beginning of time, in order to lay the foundations of the Sumerian cities. In those days, the gods alone had occupied the great land of Sumer, but soon they grew weary of their work and set about creating mankind to release themselves from the burden of their toil. The result was the Sumerian ‘people’, known by the enigmatic title ‘the black-headed ones’.Read the full story here.

Chinese Navy ships Enter Black Sea For First Time, Chinese frigate and Destroyer passed through the Dardanelles.

                                          The Jingkai II (Type 054A) class frigate 538


Chinese Navy ships Enter Black Sea For First Time, Chinese frigate and Destroyer passed through the Dardanelles.(Rferl).Officials at the Russian and Ukrainian defense ministries say Chinese naval vessels have entered the Black Sea for the first time ever. The "Qingdao" destroyer, armed with guided missiles, and the "Yinkai" Frigate, captained by the deputy commander of China's northern fleet, entered the sea on July 31 at Ukraine's invitation. The two Chinese ships have previously taken part in international operations against pirates in the Gulf of Aden. Officials said the "Yantai" was expected to sail to the Romanian port of Constanta before leaving the Black Sea on August 9, while the "Qingdao" was expected to stay in Ukraine's Crimean port of Sevastopol until August 4. In accordance with the Montreux Convention, the vessels of non-Black Sea countries can remain in Black Sea for up to 21 days.Read the full story here, more here.

WITH SADNESS THIS TIME, WE REPRODUCE THE U.S. INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM REPORT FOR 2011.



WITH SADNESS THIS TIME, WE REPRODUCE THE U.S. INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM REPORT FOR 2011.(CopticLiterature).By Dioscorus Boles.

This year, we reproduce, with a bit of sadness, the International Religious Freedom Report for 2011 which has been published today, 30 July 2012, by the U.S. Department of State (its Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor). The reader can find the section on Egypt (25-paqges long) in the link below:


We reproduce it because it documents the abuses of Coptic human rights in Egypt in detail – we reproduce it without much of a jubilation, because we don’t believe that the foreign policy of the current administration of the U.S. aims to strengthen anymore the implementation of the International Religious Freedom Act, 1998, or is serious about protecting religious freedom across the world, particularly that of the Christians of the Middle East, including the Copts.
The Christians of the Middle East see the current American foreign policy focused on one thing, and one thing alone: challenging the Shiite Islamists in Iran, and their nuclear ambitions. To be able to do that necessary objective, which we support, the U.S. has sought to strengthen Sunni Islamists in the area to counteract the power of the Shiites. But Sunni Islamists are not friends of democracy, human rights or religious liberty either. In fact, they may be worse than Shiite Islamists in that. We do not see any good coming from that in the short or long term. In fact, we may be replacing a lesser evil with a greater one, which will turn in the future against moderate Muslim men and women, Christians, and the Jews of the region … and the U.S.Read the full story here.

American Islamist Groups Shape Arab Revolutions



American Islamist Groups Shape Arab Revolutions.By David J. Rusin.
FrontPage Magazine. July 31, 2012.


Illustrating that the jihadist enterprise transcends all borders, American Islamist groups typically preoccupied with remaking the U.S. have been leaving their fingerprints on the campaign to exchange secular authoritarianism for religious authoritarianism in the Middle East. As these organizations labor stateside to nudge the governing class to embrace Arab Islamists at the expense of liberals — prompting Egyptian intellectual Essam Abdallah to lament that "the most dramatic oppression of the region's civil societies and the Arab Spring … is led by the powerful Islamist lobbies in Washington" — several of the groups' past and current officials have emerged as key players in the Middle East's new political landscape. The connections underscore that Islamists everywhere are united by a single goal: the imposition of Shari'a.
One of the prominent figures to embody these ties is Bassem Khafagi, who in March announced his intention to run for president of Egypt on behalf of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), an arm of the Muslim Brotherhood, which seeks to resurrect the caliphate and achieve "mastership of the world." He failed to get the nod, but his back story is intriguing nonetheless. Jihad Watch's Robert Spencer has pointed out that Khafagi once worked for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and is among its most notorious alumni. While serving as CAIR's community affairs director, Khafagi was arrested in 2003 as part of a terrorism support and recruitment probe targeting the Islamic Assembly of North America (IANA), of which he was a founder. The government deported Khafagi after he pleaded guilty to bank and visa fraud.
Khafagi's election platform was the essence of Islamism: "complete the implementation of Islamic law in Egypt." He also remarked that he "never loved" America, an "infidel country" that "constitutes a criminal element in this world." Moreover, Khafagi boasted about being "the first to expose the notion of 'moderate Islam,' which is used as a means to canonize a 'non-Islamic Islam.' … This 'moderation' means violation [of the laws] of Islam." Khafagi's views help explain his attraction to CAIR, with its Muslim Brotherhood origins, promotion of Islamic rule, criticism of America, and links to terrorism, especially through its status as an unindicted co-conspirator in the successful trial of the Hamas-funding Holy Land Foundation (HLF). Indeed, his words would be an embarrassment for CAIR if the mainstream media deigned to notice. Though Khafagi has faded from the spotlight for now, there is no telling what impact he could have on Egypt's undoubtedly turbulent future.
Tentacles from American Islamist organizations also reach into the Syrian National Council (SNC), the U.S.-favored civilian umbrella group opposing dictator Bashar al-Assad. The SNC is widely understood to be stacked with Islamists, so these radicals fit right in.
Heading the roster is Louay Safi, a central figure in the SNC and increasingly its public face. Safi may be most familiar, however, as a longtime official with the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), serving as executive director of the ISNA Leadership Development Center from 2004 to 2008 and becoming ISNA's director of communications and leadership development in 2009. A document composed by the Brotherhood lists ISNA as one of "our organizations and the organizations of our friends" that can advance the "grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within." Like CAIR, it was designated as an unindicted co-conspirator in the HLF case. Safi's résumé also includes past senior positions with the Virginia-based International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), which has been the focus of investigations into terror funding, and the D.C.-based Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy (CSID), which reformist Muslims have dubbed "a front for some of the most obnoxious members of the 'Wahhabi lobby' in America."
An excellent Dallas Morning News piece, published amid the controversy over Safi's training of U.S. military personnel at Fort Hood, compiles further evidence of his radicalism. For example, Safi was an unindicted co-conspirator in the prosecution of Sami al-Arian, the professor who pleaded guilty in 2006 to conspiring to aid Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ). Al-Arian's think tank reportedly received considerable funding from IIIT, where Safi was executive director and later research director. The FBI intercepted a 1995 conversation between Safi and al-Arian in which they discussed whether an executive order banning financial transactions with terrorists would inhibit al-Arian's work with PIJ. In the course of the call, Safi agreed with al-Arian that "Zionists" were controlling Washington.
Equally troubling are Safi's musings on the Shari'a-mandated execution of those who leave Islam. On the one hand, during the international uproar over charges levied against Afghan convert Abdul Rahman in 2006, Safi wrote an article voicing platitudes about individual religious liberty under Islam while laughably blaming Western imperialism for the barbaric apostasy laws in various Muslim countries, where converts can face penalties that include death. Middle East Forum president Daniel Pipes described himself as "surprised, even wondrous, at the lack of shame." On the other hand, a monograph published by Safi a few years earlier, when there was much less media scrutiny of the subject, takes a harder line, concluding that although "a quiet desertion of personal Islamic duties is not a sufficient reason for inflicting death on a person," execution is "just punishment" if "the individual's desertion of Islam is used as a political tool for instigating a state of disorder, or revolting against the law of Islam." Along with the rest of his radical history, these contradictory pronouncements — standard fare whenever Islamists address the public on uncomfortable matters — should cast doubt on any claims made by Safi, particularly his soothing assurances that Syria's future will be characterized by "equal rights and freedoms of all people."
CAIR has its own man in the SNC: Yaser Tabbara, a founding member of the Syrian resistance group. After helping launch CAIR's Chicago office, Tabbara served as its executive director until 2006; he currently sits on its board. Tabbara's time at the helm of CAIR-Chicago was marked by multiple controversies. He played a major role in the successful drive to get Thomas Klocek dismissed from his post as an adjunct professor at DePaul University, following an out-of-classroom argument in which Klocek defended Israel against the smears of pro-Palestinian students. Tabbara also led CAIR-Chicago's efforts to circle the Islamist wagons when the family of an American teenager murdered by Hamas sued U.S. charities believed to fund such terrorists. He called the trial a "lynching and a mockery of justice," but a jury awarded the plaintiffs $156 million. Around the same period, the FBI accused CAIR-Chicago of having "compromised or impeded" an investigation into an alleged hate crime by ignoring the bureau's request not to issue a premature press release about it.
Yet another important SNC member is Najib Ghadbian, a University of Arkansas professor who recently sat on the CSID board. Ghadbian's 1997 book classifies Muslim Brotherhood theorists, including Hasan al-Banna and Sayyid Qutb, as "moderate" Islamists who favor democracy, inspiring Daniel Pipes to observe that "there are no 'moderate' Islamists, only deluded analysts who try to convince of their existence." As the Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report notes, Ghadbian has long advocated that the U.S. government reach out to Syria's Brotherhood, desiring it to have a place at the post-Assad table. Wielding significant influence these days as part of the SNC's inner circle, Ghadbian was among its representatives at a meeting with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Geneva last December. Three months prior, he spoke at an Anaheim town hall beside a State Department official; the event was endorsed by CAIR and hosted by the Syrian American Council (SAC), in which both Safi and Tabbara have held leadership positions.
As the above individuals — and probably others affiliated with American Islamist groups — toil on the front lines of Middle Eastern conflicts, the organizations themselves are working domestically to legitimize and bolster the ascendant radicals of the Arab world. From one revolution to the next, they have demanded and cheered the overthrow of secular autocrats, cried out for Islamists to be included in the subsequent political processes, and celebrated when those Islamists have attained some degree of power.
Take Egypt. While CAIR-Chicago's Ahmed Rehab was in Tahrir Square last year protesting for the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, CAIR executive director Nihad Awad was on Iranian-controlled television calling for the same. Once Mubarak fell, American Islamist groups hailed his departure with talk of liberty. Yet as a statement from another Islamist organization, the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), made clear, "freedom" apparently would require the participation of the Muslim Brotherhood — whose dream of ruling by Shari'a is the antithesis of freedom. "We urge President Obama and his administration to facilitate and support a representative government with full representation of key opposition groups," ICNA declared. "As Mohamed ElBaradei notes, this representation must extend to the Muslim Brotherhood." When Islamist Mohamed Morsi was named the winner of Egypt's recent presidential election, CAIR could hardly contain its glee. "We congratulate the Egyptian people and their new president on this great achievement in Egypt's struggle for freedom," Awad said, while CAIR-New York board member Lamis Deek lauded what she sees as the country's liberation from America's "proxy-imperialist (colonialist) wrath."
Islamist groups also have rolled out the red carpet for Arab radicals during their frequent propaganda trips to the U.S. Rachid Ghannouchi, the ideological brain of the Ennahda Party that was victorious in Tunisia's post-revolutionary October election, has been especially well feted. The Islamists of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) hosted a dinner for Ghannouchi in Washington last November, advertising him as "one of the most important figures in modern Islamic political thought and theory." According to an MPAC account, he "discussed the beauty of democratic principles being able to uplift and promote religious freedom and practice for all." Of course, there was no mention of his previous comments blessing the mothers of suicide bombers, predicting Israel's demise, and referring to Hamas-led Gaza as "the model of freedom today." Next up for Ghannouchi: speaking at ISNA's convention this summer.
Other Islamists have enjoyed comparable treatment. CSID held a debate involving Hamadi Jebali, Ennahda's secretary general and now Tunisia's prime minister, in May 2011. Following the election, Jebali proclaimed, "We are in the sixth caliphate, God willing," and promised the conquest of Jerusalem. Undeterred, IIIT and CSID collaborated on a panel discussion with Tunisian Islamist leaders in May 2012. MPAC had planned a similar dialogue with an FJP delegation this past April, but it was canceled.
By championing Arab Islamists as legitimate voices and partners, these supposedly "moderate" Muslim organizations strive to make them palatable to Washington and the public at large. Simultaneously, in the words of Essam Abdallah, they are "waging … political and media wars on the liberal Arabs and Middle Eastern figures and groups in America," so as to marginalize competing viewpoints. Given the Obama administration's increasingly enthusiastic engagement with Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood and the recent report that an Egyptian parliamentarian visited the White House despite his membership in al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya, a terrorist entity, Islamists must be glowing with satisfaction. Policies match their objectives to such a degree that five congressmen have asked for investigations into the influence of suspected Brotherhood sympathizers inside the federal government — a perfectly reasonable request, considering the stakes.
The Muslim Brotherhood directly or indirectly gave life to many of the Islamist groups spearheading the "grand jihad" to reshape America. Thus, it is natural to see those organizations aiding the Brotherhood and its ideological allies in the effort to build a new Middle East — based not on freedom, but on the tyranny of radical Islam. Nor should their officials' emergence as leaders in Arab revolutionary movements be surprising. Just as violent Islamists flock to the sites of military jihad worldwide, nonviolent Islamists gravitate to political crisis zones where more subtle skills can contribute to the victory of Shari'a.
Unfortunately, the rise of Middle Eastern Islamists will only embolden their brethren in the U.S., particularly if CAIR, ISNA, and others play a role in Arab developments. There is, however, a potential silver lining. Past experience demonstrates that when Islamists take the reins of a nation, it inevitably succumbs to political, economic, and social decay that is impossible to conceal. If America's Islamists wish to stamp their names on these approaching Arab calamities, so be it. The disasters will open more eyes to the ultimate trajectory of their plans for the United States, thus improving our chances of defeating them.
David J. Rusin is a research fellow at Islamist Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum.
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Do You Have a Human Right to Blaspheme?



Do You Have a Human Right to Blaspheme?(TheRevealer).By Austin Dacey.Do you have a human right to blaspheme? Ask a philosopher and you may get two different answers.
If by ‘human right’ you mean a moral claim that governments everywhere have a duty to recognize, then I think the answer is clearly affirmative. If, however, by ‘human right,’ you mean an entitlement provided by international law, the answer is clearly muddled. 
While human rights law recognizes rights to expression, conscience, and equality that together should protect blasphemy, it also contains provisions that have been used to justify its criminalization. Legally, the human rights system is rooted in the United Nations Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted in 1948 by the newly-created United Nations. The standards expressed in the Declaration, or UDHR, guided a series of subsequent international human rights treaties beginning with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, or ICCPR, which came into force in 1976. States have voluntarily agreed to be bound by terms of these treaties and—in most cases—by their enforcement mechanisms as well. Institutionally, the human rights system is embodied in the Human Rights Council in Geneva; the “treaty bodies,” committees of independent experts charged with monitoring the implementation and enforcement of the treaties; and regional human rights courts, chief among them the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. So, what of sacrilegious expression? The foundational human rights documents do not speak of it explicitly; however, the UDHR sets forth both the individual’s right of freedom of opinion and expression in Article 19 and the right of freedom of thought, conscience and religion in Article 18, which includes freedom to change religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance. Articles 2 and 7 also provide for equality before the law and protection from discrimination, a value that I will be revisiting throughout this series. The rights enumerated in the UDHR are not absolute. They do not permit acts aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth in the Declaration (a so-called Abuse Clause) and they are subject to limitations “as are determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public order and the general welfare in a democratic society.” In other words, the rights of one may not be exercised at the expense of the rights of others or of a democratic society. If you wanted to make blasphemy illegal under international law, or to leave to nation states the ability to make it illegal, there are a number of approaches you could take within the existing framework. You could appeal to the “limitations” based in public order or respect for the rights of others and argue that outrages against religious feeling can run afoul of these limitations. Or you could argue that the denigration of beliefs can rise to the level of incitement to discrimination (or worse) against the believers themselves. Both of these approaches have been vigorously pursued in the years since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In interpreting international standards for the European region, The European Court of Human Rights, beginning with the 1994 case of Otto Preminger Institut v. Austria, has ruled that existing bans on blasphemy by European states do not violate the guarantee of freedom of expression because they count as legitimate limitations grounded on respect for the rights of others. In this case, it was a right to respect for “religious feelings” the origin and nature of which the judges felt no need to explain. The other tradition of blasphemy suppression depends on equating blasphemy with incitement or “hate speech.” It takes legal force from ICCPR Article 20, Paragraph 2, which requires states to prohibit “advocacy of national, racial or religious hatred that constitutes incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence.” The sweep of this language is broad. It expressly calls on governments to pass legislation criminalizing hate speech. Moreover, it does not restrict hate speech to the advocacy of actual acts of lawlessness. Engendering “hostility” is enough to override free speech protections. Today, laws against religious hate speech, religious defamation, and religious insult are common outside of the United States, where they contradict the prevailing interpretation of the First Amendment. However, as Johannes Morsink recounts in The Universal Declaration of Human Rights: Origins, Drafting, and Intent, such limitations on expression were firmly opposed by Eleanor Roosevelt—who chaired the commission that drafted the UDHR—along with the majority of Western European nations. The Soviet delegation repeatedly attempted to introduce more expansive language ostensibly designed to suppress fascist ideology. But Roosevelt and her allies feared that such language could be used suppress dissent of all kinds, including non-communist understandings of democracy. The Soviet Union, Ukraine, Yugoslavia, Belarus, Czechoslovakia, Poland, South Africa, and Saudi Arabia (which had opposed the right to change one’s religion) abstained from the vote adopting the Universal Declaration. However, when the ICCPR was adopted in 1966 by the expanded membership of the UN General Assembly (there were only 58 member states in 1948), it contained the hotly contested hate speech standard of Article 20(2). Today, all European states ban religious hate speech. Yet, as Roosevelt warned, such a standard is liable to abuse. It was under just such a law that Alexander Aan was sentenced last month in Indonesia. Some observations on the sex life of Muhammad that appeared on Aan’s Facebook page were found to violate the 2008 Information and Electronic Transaction Law by spreading religious hatred. It could be arguing that in doing so, Indonesia was upholding its treaty obligations under human rights law. Austin Dacey is a representative to the United Nations for the International Humanist and Ethical Union. He is the author of The Future of Blasphemy: Speaking of the Sacred in an Age of Human Rights: And The Secular conscience: Why Belief Belongs in Public Life. His writings have appeared in the New York Times, USA Today, and Dissent.Read the full story here.

Video - Jerusalem Our Capital - NOW or NEVER!

Obama DHS orders Fed. immigration officers to Free Illegal Alien “Dreamers” Arrested For Violent Crimes.



Obama DHS orders Fed. immigration officers to Free Illegal Alien “Dreamers” Arrested For Violent Crimes.(JW).Federal immigration officers have been ordered by the Obama Administration to release illegal immigrants arrested for violent crimes as long as they claim to be “dreamers” who came to the U.S. as children and are being allowed to remain in the country under a new policy.
The astounding directive was made public by a pair of officials who work for separate front-line agencies of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS); Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Border Patrol. The men, longtime agents, are also union heads who represent thousands of immigration officers around country.
Illegal immigrants are essentially running the show, avoiding detention by exploiting the Obama Administration’s controversial plan to spare nearly 1 million young illegal immigrants (so-called “dreamers”) from deportation. 
Under the deferred action process, announced just a few weeks ago, “young people brought to the United States through no fault of their own as children” will have a chance at U.S. citizenship.
Federal officers say no proof is required and the amnesty is being granted based solely on individuals’ claims. “What we are seeing so far concerns us greatly,” said Chris Crane, president of the National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council and a veteran ICE agent himself. “”Officers have been told that there is no burden for the alien to prove anything…. At this point we don’t even know why DHS has criteria at all, as there is no requirement or burden to prove anything on the part of the alien.”Hmmmm.....""I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." IMPEACHMENT? Read the full story here.

Erdogan's Kurdish phobia rears its head again.



Erdogan's Kurdish phobia rears its head again.(HD).Prime Minister Erdoğan cannot have it both ways. Referring to Sunni Arabs who have risen against the al-Assad regime as “freedom fighters who are combating state terror,” but then turning and calling the equally oppressed Kurds who are making political headway now in the confusion that reigns in Syria “terrorists” is hypocritical. Developments in Syria, with Kurds controlling parts of Northern Syria along the border with Turkey, have reanimated the Kurdish phobia of nationalist Turks, who are now seething with anger over the prospect of “another northern Iraq” emerging on Turkey’s southern border.
Prime Minister Erdoğan, who for all his “Kurdish opening,” which was supposedly aimed at alleviating Turkey’s Kurdish problem, has been relying more and more on nationalist quarters over these past few years. This is why with the news coming from northern Syria he wasted no time in playing to the nationalist gallery. With Syria’s “Kurdish reality” suddenly dawning on Turks, Erdoğan clearly feels he has to do this, even if his remarks are aggravating as far as Turkey’s own Kurdish problem is concerned, and also risk spoiling Ankara’s developing ties with the Kurds of northern Iraq.
“It is our most natural right to intervene [in northern Syria], since those terrorist formations would disturb our national peace,” Erdoğan said last week during a television interview. Turks consider the armed Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), which is only one of the Kurdish groups active in Syria, in the same light as the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). PYD leader Salih Muslim, a Turkish-educated urbane Kurd, admits sympathy for the PKK but insists that the PYD is a different group, with its own agenda that has nothing to do with Turkey. Given that it has ties with the PKK, despite Muslim’s remarks, the PYD nevertheless provides political ammunition for the Turkish government, enabling it to raise the specter of “Kurdish terrorism.” Ankara’s phobia, however, is not just towards the PYD alone, but to the resurgence of any Kurdish entity in northern Syria. The idea that the Syrian Kurds, with support from the northern Iraqi Kurdish Regional Government (KRG), may establish their own autonomous or even independent region along the border with Turkey is simply too much for nationalist Turks who fear Kurdish separatism.Read the full story here.

Moscow exhibition probes Chagall's Jewish Russian roots.



Moscow exhibition probes Chagall's Jewish Russian roots.(Mysinchew).By Marina Lapenkova.MOSCOW, July 31, 2012 (AFP) - Once banned as "bourgeois", the work of painter Marc Chagall is enjoying a revival in the ex-Soviet Union with a new exhibition delving into the influence folk art and his Russian Jewish roots had on his work. "Visitors often ask, why Chagall's animals are blue, yellow or pink, why the bride is flying over the rooftops and the man has two faces. They will now understand where Chagall drew (his images) from," said curator Ekaterina Selezneva.
To emphasise the importance of these influences, the exhibition at Moscow's Tretyakov Gallery features a popular Russian engraving on wood, a carpet and icon as well as a Jewish spice-cake mould and seven-branched menorah chandelier.
Born Moishe Segal in 1887 to a poor Jewish family outside Vitebsk in modern Belarus, Chagall never forgot his life in the Jewish pale -- the area to which Catherine II confined the jews of her empire in the 18th century -- and recalls images of Vitebsk in each painting. When the 1917 Russian Revolution abolished anti-Semitic laws, Chagall was appointed Fine Arts Commissioner in Vitebsk, but a conflict with the fellow painter and colleague Kazimir Malevich led to his resignation in 1920. Chagall left Vitebsk and within two years emigrated to France. The exhibition, which runs until September 30, "must help people to understand the mystery of Chagall" who always looked to popular art in his search for a distinctive figurative language, said Selezneva. Also on display are little-known drawings, watercolours and gouaches by Chagall as well as sketches of Vitebsk, Paris collages and famous illustrations of the Bible and Lafontaine's fables.Read the full story here.

Video - Michel Chossudovsky from the Centre for Research on Globalization "Panetta has blood on his hands for supporting Syria rebels."

Egyptian Coptic teacher arrested for insulting Islam on Facebook.



Egyptian Coptic teacher arrested for insulting Islam on Facebook.(AA).An Egyptian teacher was detained after being accused of posting cartoons on Facebook allegedly insulting Islam, Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) and Islamist President Mohammed Mursi, an Egyptian daily reported on Tuesday. A Coptic-Christian teacher from the southern Egyptian Governorate of Sohag, Bishoy Kamel, was arrested on Monday for sharing the cartoons on a Facebook page, the online edition of Egyptian state-run al-Ahram daily reported. The charges were pressed against Kamel by Mohammed Safwat, an Egyptian who claimed that the latter had insulted the newly-elected President as well. Kamel has admitted managing the Facebook page in question, however, he claimed that he was not responsible for the content of the page, which, he alleged, had been hacked on Saturday, according to the report by al-Ahram Online. In early June, a Coptic business tycoon, Naguib Sawiris, was severely criticized by Islamists after posting a cartoon of Disney characters Mickey and Minnie Mouse dressed in Islamic attire. A number of Islamist lawyers lodged a complaint at the prosecutor against Sawiris, whom they accused of offending Islam through posting those cartoons. Sawiris, at the time, defended himself by saying that it was just a joke and had no religious dimensions. Muslim-majority Egypt has for decades been marked by deep sectarian tensions, with religious violence between Muslims and Christians often sparked by disputes over land or love affairs between members of the two communities.Read the full story here.

London Olympics: Saudi Judo player allowed to compete wearing hijab.



London Olympics: Saudi Judo player allowed to compete wearing hijab.(AA).A female Saudi fighter will take part in the Olympic judo competition after being allowed to wear an Islamic headscarf, or hijab, of a specific design, officials said on Monday. Wojdan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shaherkani is one of only two Saudi women to travel to London after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) lobbied the conservative Islamic kingdom to end its refusal to send women to the Games. But she had said she would only compete if she was allowed to wear the hijab, and judo officials refused, saying it would be dangerous.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Shaherkani and her father attended the judo action on Monday at at London's Excel Centre. The father said his daughter does not speak English and kept his arm tightly wrapped around her shoulders. He was still not sure if she would be allowed to compete or not. “I need my daughter to play,” he told the Journal. “We are hoping to make new history for Saudi's women.” But a Saudi National Olympic Committee spokeswoman said the committee, the IOC and the International Judo Federation (IJF) had now agreed on an acceptable form for the headscarf. “They agreed on a design and she will compete wearing this design,” Razan Baker said, adding that she did not know how this design looked. IJF spokesman Nicolas Messner confirmed that Shaherkani would compete, but declined to give further details. The IJF’s regulations for the Olympic Games state that no headgear can be worn, and the federation says there could be a danger to fighters if a hijab is inadvertently used for an otherwise legal strangulation grip.Hmmm....."Religion does not require women to veil their hands, feet and faces or enjoin any special type of veil. Tribal custom must not impose itself on the free will of the individual." ~ Amanullah Khan - King of Afghanistan (1919-1929).Read the full story here.

Saudi Arabia the Muslim Brotherhood's next target?Egyptian Politician Calls Saudi Arabia "Enemy of Egyptian Revolution".



Saudi Arabia the Muslim Brotherhood's next target?Egyptian Politician Calls Saudi Arabia "Enemy of Egyptian Revolution".(Fars).According to a report by the website of the Egyptian Elbalad TV network, former Spokesman of Egyptian Ikhwan al-Muslimun (Muslim Brotherhood) Party Kamal al-Halbawi strongly criticized Egyptian President Mohammad Mursi for his visit to Saudi Arabia which, he said, took place irrespective of Riyadh's policies and steadfast opposition to the recent revolutions in the region. Mursi visited Saudi Arabia on July 12 in his first official visit abroad. Halbawi further pointed to Saudi Arabia's participation in the suppression of popular uprisings in the region, and said,
"The Saudis have always been living under such rulers that consider the Earth and everything on it as their own assets and they dispatch forces and tanks to confront protesters and kill them in different squares."
Halbawi said Egypt should not have any relations with such an aggressive state, although he assured that Saudi Arabia's aggressions against the regional uprisings would never leave any impact on the regional revolutions. Since February 2011, Saudi protesters have held demonstrations on an almost regular basis in Eastern Provinces, mainly in the Qatif region and the town of Awamiyah, calling for the release of all political prisoners, freedom of expression and assembly, and an end to widespread discrimination. However, the demonstrations have turned into protests against the Al Saud regime, especially since November 2011, when Saudi security forces killed five protesters and injured many others. Meantime, a prominent Bahraini opposition figure said last week that Saudi forces are still in the tiny Persian Gulf island and play an active role in the suppression of Bahraini protesters. The leader of Bahrain's Al Wefaq National Islamic Society Sheikh Ali Salman announced that Saudi forces wear Bahraini police uniforms in their crackdown on anti-regime protesters in Bahrain. He added that the Peninsula Shield Force uses Bahraini police uniform when cracking down on anti-government protesters. Anti-government protesters have been holding peaceful demonstrations across Bahrain since mid-February 2011, calling for an end to the Al Khalifa dynasty's over-40-year rule.Hmmm.....King Abdullah "We need to cut of the head of the snake" he could start by stop 'feeding' it financially.Read the full story here.

The Ramadan Olympics and Islam's "Law of Necessity".



The Ramadan Olympics and Islam's "Law of Necessity".(MiddleEastForum).
By Mark Durie.
Gatestone Institute.

Islam Is a flexible religion: religious obligations allow exceptions, subject to circumstances. Muslim religious scholars balance countervailing obligations to determine when exceptions apply. Understanding such balancing of necessities in Islam is not only important for public policy, but also for understanding how an identical set of religious beliefs can be used to justify war or peace, terrorism or peaceful coexistence.

Fasting During a Ramadan Olympics

As the London Olympics are underway, London organizers of the Olympics, according to a report in the New York Times, are supporting the needs of Muslims athletes, "with more than 150 Muslim clerics on hand to assist athletes, as well as fast-breaking packs including dates and other traditional foods."
As it is also the month of Ramadan, during which Muslims are obligated not to eat or drink, even their own saliva, from sunrise to sunset, spare a thought for the more than 3,500 Muslim competitors, who, if they strictly observed Ramadan, would be abstaining from food and drink from the first prayer of the day (Fajr) at 2.44 am through to the dusk prayer (Maghrib) at 8.53 pm (as at July 29, 2012, see Islamicfinder.org).
Optimum sporting performance cannot be expected from athletes who go without food or drink for over 18 hours -- a circumstance which would not be fair to them.
Many Muslim Olympians now in London will therefore not be fasting. Some may rely on religious rulings (fatwas) which exempt sportspeople from the Ramadan fast, such as a ruling issued in 2010 by the German Central Council of Muslims, that Muslim professional footballers, because they depend upon football for their living, need not fast during Ramadan.
The United Emirates, using a different approach stated that players may omit the fast as long as they do not stay in one place for more than four days. This is based upon a standard exemption for travelers during Ramadan (Sahih Bukhari, 3:31:167). Another exemption, following advice from imams in Morocco, is being used by English Olympic rower Moe Sbihi, who announced that he will donate 60 meals to poor people in Morocco for each missed fast day. Many Olympic athletes are postponing their fasts until their sporting commitments are completed. However, the Moroccan football team are fasting and trusting that Allah will help them to victory. All Muslims agree that fasting is obligatory during Ramadan; they differ in the exceptions they make.

"Necessity": Balancing What Is Forbidden with What Is Permitted

There is a powerful principle in Islamic jurisprudence, the "Law of Necessity," that permits what is forbidden -- the end justifying the means. If a goal is obligatory, then the means can also be obligatory, even if otherwise they might be forbidden.
In Islam the universe of possible human deeds is divided into what is obligatory, permitted neutral, disliked, or forbidden. Then there is the need to balance the pros and cons of every act. This is a world of choice which can embrace a necessary evil, or take a pass on a good deed for the sake of a greater good.
Some "Law of Necessity" exceptions go back to Muhammad; they are hard-wired into Islamic law. A case in point is the exemption for travelers during Ramadan, which some athletes rely on. Another exemption for travelers, which also comes straight from Muhammad, allows Muslims to catch up on prayer times later than the correct hour.
Life raises many complex challenges, and the balancing of obligations and prohibitions may require more subtle reasoning, dependent on context. The renowned medieval Muslim scholar al-Ghazali explained how the principle of balancing necessities can be used to make lying permitted or even compulsory, according to the circumstances:
"Speaking is a means to achieve objectives. If a praiseworthy aim is attainable through both telling the truth and lying, it is unlawful to accomplish it through lying because there is no need for it. When it is possible to achieve such an aim by lying but not by telling the truth, it is permissible to lie if attaining the goal is permissible … and obligatory to lie if the goal is obligatory . …" (The Reliance of the Traveller, p.745-46, paragraph r8.2)
Yusuf al-Qaradawy has written extensively about the jurisprudence of "balancing necessities." He explains that interests and pros and cons of any deed must be balanced, one against each other and weighed carefully.
Al-Qaradawy's focus was politics, not sport. He cited an example of the support given by the Islamist political leader Maulana Maududi to Fatima Jinnah in the 1965 presidential elections in Pakistan. Previously Maududi had declared that it was not permissible in Islam for a woman to govern (based on the teachings of Muhammad). He came, however, to regard Jinnah as the lesser of two evils, so he commanded his followers to vote for the female candidate, and against General Ayub Khan.
Understanding such balancing of necessities in Islam is important for public policy -- to grasp how an identical set of religious beliefs can be used to justify war or peace, terrorism or peaceful coexistence -- or any other decision, based solely on the circumstances at the time.

Balancing Necessities and Public Policy

Consider the issue of the timing of the Olympics: Was Juan Cole correct to suggest that the Olympic Games should be rescheduled so they did not fall in Ramadan?
The fact that the "Law of Necessity" allows Muslims to get around restrictions suggests that although it might certainly have been thoughtful or considerate, it would not in any way necessary to reschedule the Olympics for the sake of Muslim religious sensitivities.
The possibility of balancing necessities needs to be taken into account when organizations and governments are faced with demands that they make concessions for the sake of complying with Islamic Sharia Law. Because the Islamic "Law of Necessity" fully permits Muslims to find creative ways to adapt when Sharia law conflicts with practical life, the argument that societies are obliged to make concessions to privilege all the strict demands of Sharia Law is considerably weakened.
Non-Muslims in particular need to take balancing necessities into account. Consider Sheikh Ahmed al-Mahlawi of Egypt who accepts that it is not a sin for Muslim religious scholars to see women in the streets with unveiled faces: the need for Muslim scholars to get around in public places outweighs the prohibition against men seeing women's unveiled faces. He boasted, all the same, that he had compelled a US consular official to wear the hijab [headscarf] when she met with him. If the U.S. official had been better informed, she might have asked that Sheikh al-Mahlawi take a more moderate, balanced approach. She might have refused to submit to the hijab, pointing out that the Sheikh copes very well with looking at the unveiled faces of women whenever he goes into the street.

Balancing Necessity and Terrorism

Al-Qaradawi concluded that although it is wrong in general for Muslims to participate in non-Islamic governments or to make alliances with non-Muslim nations, compromises may be made when such lesser evils are 'balanced' against the greater good of the Muslim cause.
He also made the observation that many of the conflicts between different factions working for the success of Islam exist because of different interpretations about how to "balance" the different necessities and interests in Islam. Of course, Muslims who agree on their fundamental principles of faith can have very different views on how to balance these beliefs in any given situation.
Jihadi [holy war] martyrs make use of theological balancing necessities when they justify their methods for killing enemies. In Islam, for example, it is forbidden to kill oneself, but suicide, if it can be justified in the cause of Allah or furthering Islam, is not only permissible but heroic. Jihadi clerics are more than willing to write fatwas which ensure that a would-be martyr goes to his death with a clear conscience.In Islam, it is forbidden to kill women and children, but "collateral damage" is acceptable if a greater end is in sight. It is also forbidden in Islam to lie, but it is recommended that a pious jihadi using taqiyya [dissimulation] if necessary to achieve, say, a "martyrdom operation." The Al-Qaeda manual, for instsnce, appeals to the principle that "necessity permits the forbidden" to justify criminal acts; and the Indonesian jihad cleric Abu Bakar Bashir argued that jihadis were entitled to hack foreigner's bank accounts to obtain funds (see The Crime-Terror Nexus, New York State Office of Homeland Security). (For a bizarre example of the extremes to which jihad fatwas can go, see this report by Raymond Ibrahim.)
The ramifications can be momentous for Muslims and non-Muslims alike: consider the difference in opinion between the Saudi leaders and Usama Bin Ladin concerning the presence of American soldiers in the Kingdom after the invasion of Kuwait. Bin Ladin opposed this infidel 'occupation'. In his 1996 fatwa declaring war on America he counted the presence of US soldiers as "one of the worst catastrophes to befall the Muslims" since the death of Muhammad.
Saudia Arabia's Grand Mufti and supreme religious authority Sheikh Ibn Baz, however, allowed American troops into Saudi Arabia, although in another fatwa he had stated that Christian servants could not be employed in Arabia:
"It is not allowed to have a non-Muslim maid. It is not allowed to have a non-Muslim male or a non-Muslim female servant, or a worker who is a non-Muslim for anyone living in the Arabian peninsula. This is because the Prophet Muhammad ordered the Jews and Christians to be expelled from that land. He ordered that only Muslims should be left there. He decreed upon his death that all polytheists must be expelled from this Peninsula. (Islamic Fatawa Regarding Women, p. 36 compiled by Abdul Malik Mujahid).
Both Usama Bin Ladin and the Saudi authorities agreed on the principle that infidels could not be permitted to live in Saudi Arabia. What they disagreed on was how to balance this against other requirements, such as the need to safeguard the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This difference was enough to trigger Bin Ladin's war on America.
What distinguishes a jihadi terrorist from a more peaceful Muslim, therefore, may not be any fundamental difference in belief, but, as in the West, merely in a given instance, how the religious legal principles of his faith should be applied.
Mark Durie is an Anglican vicar in Melbourne, Australia, and an Associate Fellow at the Middle Eastern Forum.
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Video - Searching For Israel's Capital.



HT: IsraelMatzav.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Overnight Music Video - Mariah Carey & Whitney Houston - When You Believe.

Female Saudi convert to Christianity leaves Lebanon to Turkey



Female Saudi convert to Christianity leaves Lebanon to Turkey.(AA).A 28-year-old woman believed to be a Saudi citizen, who made headlines escaping to Lebanon after converting to Christianity, has now left for Turkey, UAE daily Gulf news reported on Monday. “The Lebanese government has informed the Saudi embassy in Beirut that the girl has left the country for Turkey,” Awadh Aseeri, the Saudi ambassador, said. “The Lebanese authorities said that they were not sure whether the woman would settle in Turkey or would move on to another country,” the Saudi daily Al Sharq. She had allegedly been living in Beirut with assistance from a Saudi national and a Lebanese national. Her case became known, when her father filed a lawsuit against the two men for what he claimed was their role in influencing her and in helping her leave Saudi Arabia without his knowledge.According to Gulfnews, the Saudi envoy said the family had tried to convince the woman to return home amid assurances that she would be safe. Aseer added that were was no evidence indicating that she had converted to Christianity. Reports that she had been living in a church in Beirut were quickly dismissed by local Christian groups. Mariam appeared in video on youtube religious channel called jesussetmefreet talking about how god showed her that Christianity is the right religion in her dreams. She says” I have asked god to show me the truth in my dreams and within a week god showed me that Jesus is his son , if you are uncertain about your religion, if you feel lost, ask god to guide you and he will”
The above video shows Mariam talking to guy who was also Muslim and converted to Christianity. The video is in Arabic with no English subtitles.If Mariam brought back by the Saudi government, she will be charged for apostasy, and she will be given 3 chances to return to Islam, if she didn’t she will face death plenty, in other term ” beheading”.Saudi Arabia adheres to a strict interpretation of Sharia law where committing "Ridda" (the religious term for when Muslims denounce Islam or convert to other religions) can be subjected to the death penalty.Hmmmm....A pity the Obama Admin report on 'religious freedom' missed this.Read the full story here.

Obama Admin hits out at Europe for 'Islamophobia', Egypt over religious freedoms for Copts.



Obama Admin hits out at Europe for 'Islamophobia', Egypt over religious freedoms for Copts.(AA).The United States on Monday accused Egypt, China and European nations of harming religious freedom, citing a rising tide of anti-Semitism, laws banning Muslim veils and attacks on Coptic Christians. “In times of transition, the situation of religious minorities in these societies comes to the forefront,” the State Department wrote, in its first report on religious rights since last year’s Arab Spring revolts. “Some members of society who have long been oppressed seek greater freedom and respect for their rights while others fear change. Those differing aspirations can exacerbate existing tensions,” it warned.
The report which details the situation in 2011 noted that in Egypt, although the Arab country’s interim military leaders had made gestures towards greater inclusiveness, sectarian tensions and violence had increased.
It denounced “both the Egyptian government’s failure to curb rising violence against Coptic Christians and its involvement in violent attacks.”
The report cited an attack in October last year in which 25 people, mostly Copts, were killed when Egyptian security forces cracked down on a protest outside the national radio and television station. “To date, government officials have not been held accountable for their actions, and there were indications in early 2012 of mounting Coptic emigration,” it added.
The State Department also signaled “a marked deterioration during 2011 in the government’s respect for and protection of religious freedom in China. “In the Tibetan Autonomous Region and other Tibetan areas, this included increased restrictions on religious practice, especially in Tibetan Buddhist monasteries and nunneries,” it said.
In a surprise twist, the report warned that European nations undergoing major demographic shifts have seen “growing xenophobia, anti-Semitism, anti-Muslim sentiment, and intolerance toward people considered ‘the other.’“ The report complains of a “rising number of European countries, including Belgium and France, whose laws restricting dress adversely affected Muslims and others.” 
The report also criticized a law passed by the Hungarian parliament that “regulates registration of religious organizations and requires a political vote in parliament to secure recognition. “The law went into effect on January 1, 2012, reducing the number of recognized religious groups from over 300 to fewer than 32,” it noted. Belgium and France have outraged many Muslims with laws against full veils, such as the niqab worn by many women in Saudi Arabia or the Afghan burqa. The French ban came into force in April 2011 and prohibits covering one’s face in public, while the Belgian law went into effect last July. Violations in France are punishable by a fine of up to 150 euros ($190) or a period of citizenship training. U.S. President Barack Obama fiercely criticized European moves to ban the veil in a major speech to the Muslim world in Cairo in 2009. But in Europe, where many voters feel large Muslim immigrant populations are not integrating well and that Islam poses a threat to women’s rights, many see France and Belgium as leading the way on this issue.Hmmmm......Obama: “We will hold sacred the beliefs held sacred by others.”Read the full story here.

Iran warns Turkey of harsh response to potential strikes



Iran warns Turkey of harsh response to potential strikes.(AA).Syrian ally Iran has warned their common neighbor Turkey that it will meet a harsh response should Ankara carry out any strikes inside Syrian territory, a pro-Damascus daily reported on Monday. “Any attack on Syrian territory will meet with a harsh response, and the Iranian-Syrian mutual defense agreement will be activated,” the Al-Watan newspaper said. “Turkey has received very strong warnings in the past few hours and the following message -- beware changing the rules of the game,” the paper added.
Iran is the closest regional ally of embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, but has also striven to keep good relations with Turkey even as the standoff over its controversial nuclear program has deepened with other NATO member states. Tehran has enjoyed close ties with Damascus since 1980 when the Syrian government took its side in its devastating eight-year war with now executed dictator Saddam Hussein's regime in Baghdad, and has signed a series of defence pacts, including in 2006 and 2008.
But Ankara has been a leading champion of the more than 16-month uprising against the Assad regime and has given refuge to large numbers of army defectors, who have formed the kernel of a rebel army, as well as tens of thousands of civilian refugees.
 Al-Watan cited an “Arab diplomat” as accusing Turkey of seeking to use its fears about the rebel Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which already enjoys rear-bases in the far north of Iraq, as a pretext to intervene in Syria. “Ankara is preparing an agreement with Washington to intervene militarily in the Syrian (crisis), using the Kurdish card as an excuse,” the paper said.
Turkey has agreed with the United States on a military intervention limited to the north of Syria, specifically the northern province of Aleppo, to pave the way for the creation of a safe haven guarded by the armed gangs.” 
Turkish newspapers have reported that some Kurdish-majority regions of northern Syria have been flying the flag of Syria's PKK ally, the Democratic Union Party (PYD), in what they have said is a deal with the Assad family's government, which was a longtime backer of the Kurdish rebel group's insurgency in Turkey. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned that it is a “given” that Turkish troops would pursue fleeing PKK militants inside Syria, warning that Ankara would not hesitate to strike “terrorists.” Turkey has sent a convoy of tanks, ground-to-air missile batteries and other weapons to the border with Syria to further bolster its forces, the Anatolia news agency reported on Monday.The issue of PKK terrorists infiltrating from Iraq to Syria will become part of the discussion Davutoğlu will have with Massoud Barzani, the president of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in northern Iraq, when he visits there on Wednesday.Hmmmm......"May you live in interesting times".Read the full story here.

Deadly Ebola outbreak reaches Uganda capital.



Deadly Ebola outbreak reaches Uganda capital.(Yahoo).Uganda's president Monday warned against shaking hands and other physical contact after the first reported death from the deadly Ebola virus in the capital Kampala. "The Ministry of Health are tracing all the people who have had contact with the victims," Yoweri Museveni said in a state broadcast, adding that 14 people had died in total since Ebola broke out in western Uganda three weeks ago. One person believed to have contracted the virus in western Uganda was reported dead in Kampala's Mulago Hospital, Museveni said, calling on people not to shake hands to avoid the spread of the virus. "Ebola spreads by contact when you contact each other physically... avoid shaking of hands, because that can cause contact through sweat, which can cause problems," Museveni said.
"Do not take on burying somebody who has died from symptoms that look like Ebola -- instead call health workers because they know how to do it... avoid promiscuity because this sickness can also go through sex," he added. Seven doctors and 13 health workers at Mulago Hospital are in quarantine after "at least one or two cases" were taken there, with one later dying, he said.
The latest outbreak started in Uganda's western Kibale district, around 200 kilometres (125 miles) from Kampala, and around 50 kilometres from the border with Democratic Republic of Congo. The fatal case in Kampala was a health worker who "had attended to the dead at Kagadi hospital" in Kibale, Health Minister Christine Ondoa told reporters. She is believed to have travelled independently to Kampala -- possibly on public transport -- after her three-month old baby died, Ondoa added. Results of tests were still awaited, but it is "presumed" she died of Ebola, said Dennis Lwamafa, Uganda's commissioner for disease control. "I appeal to you to first of all report all cases which appear to be like Ebola, and these are high fever, vomiting, sometimes diarrhoea, and with bleeding," Museveni added. "When you handle this case well you can eliminate Ebola quickly." According to experts, despite being extremely virulent the disease is containable because it kills its victims faster than it can spread to new ones. It has a fatality ratio of between 23 and 90 percent, according to the World Health Organisation.However, Museveni said that the virus had not been immediately identified this time, resulting in a delay. "The bleeding which normally accompanies Ebola did not take place initially among these patients," he said, adding that health workers at first did not therefore realise what the problem was. "Because of that delay the sickness spread."Hmmmm.....A 'mutated form'?Read the full story here.

Video - Meet "Robocop" it weighs four tons, shoots a Gatling Gun when you smile, controlled by iPhone.



Video - Meet "Robocop" it weighs four tons, shoots a Gatling Gun when you smile, controlled by iPhone.(DM).A Japanese electronics company has unveiled a 13ft super-robot which can be controlled by an iPhone. But be careful with the jokes if you are on the phone to the pilot as the robot, made by Suidobashi Heavy Industry in Tokyo, brings a whole new meaning to ‘trigger-happy’. 'Kuratas' is fitted with a futuristic weapons system, including a gatling gun capable of shooting 6,000 BB bullets a minute, which fires when the pilot smiles.Kuratas, made by Suidobashi Heavy Industry, can be controlled either through the one-man cockpit or from the outside using any smartphone connected to the 3G network. The robot, which is set will go on sale for £900,000, has around 30 hydraulic joints which the pilot moves using motion control. As it is made to order the style conscious buyer will not have to worry about sticking to the grey exterior - it comes in 16 colours, including black and pink, and for an extra £60 they will sort you out with a cup holder. Engineers Wataru Yoshizaki and Kogoro Kurata were saluted in front of Kuratas together with their pilot Anna when they showcased the robot at the Wonder Festival in Chiba, suburban Tokyo earlier today. The team have been working on the robot since 2010. The company also released a video where very attractive Anna gives step by step instructions of how to operate the Kuratas. Realising that there may be a flaw with this system of opening fire, the video warns the pilot against smiling too much whilst operating the Kuratas weaponry. Kurayas is 13ft tall and weighs four tons – not including the pilot. The four wheeled legs ensures that it is easy to transport and the pilot will be able to drive it at a top speed of just under 6.5 mph.Hmmmmm......Can it be hacked?Read the full story here.