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News Stories
Excerpts of Key News Stories in Major Media


Below are highly revealing excerpts of key news stories from the major media that suggest major cover-ups and corruption. Links are provided to the full stories on their media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These news stories are listed by date posted. You can explore the same list by order of importance or by date of news story. By choosing to educate ourselves and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.

Note: This comprehensive list of news stories is usually updated once a week. Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


Why Are Syrian Refugees Leaving Syria? Civil War Has Killed 19,000 Children Since 2011
2015-11-25, International Business Times
Posted: 2015-11-30 15:17:16
http://www.ibtimes.com/why-are-syrian-refugees-leaving-syria-civil-war-has-ki...

The devastating civil war in Syria has claimed the lives of more than 19,000 children since the conflict began in 2011, according to new estimates tabulated by the Syrian Human Rights Network. The report found that 18,858 Syrian children were killed by government forces, mostly through missile shelling and the use of barrel bombs in active conflict zones, from March 2011 through October 2015. 582 children were shot by snipers and 159 were tortured to death in government prisons, the group wrote. Rebel forces killed an additional 603 children in that time frame, and another 229 died at the hands of the Islamic State militant group. Since September, Russian airstrikes have resulted in the deaths of at least 86 children, while airstrikes by U.S.-backed coalition forces have killed 75, the report said. The influx of Syrian refugees into Europe has stoked a continent-wide crisis in recent years. But a newer debate around how many refugees to accept, and how to screen them, has cropped up in Europe and the United States in recent days amid fears that terrorists could try to infiltrate refugee groups. Various human rights groups put the total civilian death toll from the Syrian conflict at around 200,000, making child deaths around 10 percent of the carnage. But death counts have been overwhelmingly difficult to calculate; the United Nations announced last year it would stop updating its estimates.

Note: The New York Times recently reported that a Syrian passport found at a Paris bombing site was planted as part of a false evidence trail "to turn public opinion against Syrian refugees." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.


China ‘cloning factory’ to produce cattle, racehorses and pets
2015-11-24, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-11-30 15:14:13
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/china/12013158/China-cloning-f...

The world’s biggest animal “cloning factory” is due to open in China, producing one million calves a year, sniffer dogs and even genetic copies of the family pet. The center may cause alarm in Europe, where the cloning of animals for farming was banned in September due to animal welfare considerations. But Xu Xiaochun, chairman of Chinese biotechnology company BoyaLife that is backing the facility, dismissed such concerns. Interest in agricultural biotechnology has been rapidly increasing in China, where [beef prices] are said to have tripled from 2000 to 2013. Mr Xu said his new facility will clone racehorses and a handful of dogs for people with “emotional ties” to their pets, but its main focus was producing cattle. However, he appeared to be more excited about its ability to churn out sniffer dogs. “The dog has to be smart and obedient, strong, sensitive," he said. The factory, which will include a 15,000 square metre laboratory, an animal centre, a gene bank and an exhibition hall ... is due to open in the first half of next year. BoyaLife will operate the facility with its South Korean partner, Sooam Biotech, that runs a centre that can clone dogs for customers willing to pay $100,000 (Ł66,000), and has already produced more than 550 puppies. The new facility will initially produce 100,000 cattle embryos a year, eventually increasing to one million.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Watchdog: IRS should spend less time auditing rich, more time on super-rich
2015-11-20, USA Today
Posted: 2015-11-30 15:11:25
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2015/11/20/watchdog-irs-should-sp...

Every hour spent auditing a taxpayer with more than $5 million in income nets the government $4,545, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration found in a report released Friday. Auditing taxpayers in the $200,000 to $399,999 income bracket was less fruitful, generating just $605 in revenue per audit-hour. And yet the IRS spent more than four times as many hours examining taxpayers in the $200,000 to $399,999 income bracket than the $5 million-plus. That's especially important as congressional budget cuts have forced the IRS to pare back its taxpayer audits. The percentage of individual taxpayers audited each year has reached the lowest point in a decade, and is now just 0.84%. The highest-income taxpayers have seen the biggest decline in audit rates. In 2011, 30% of tax returns from taxpayers making more than $10 million got a second look by the IRS. In 2014, it was just 16%. The IRS already gives special attention to tax returns with an income above $200,000. But the inspector general recommends that the IRS increase that threshold. The agency will consider changing those thresholds, said Douglas O'Donnell, the commissioner of the IRS's Large Business and International Division. But he also said the IRS does not target groups of taxpayers based just on how much revenue an audit will generate.

Note: In the US in recent years, the super-rich have been taxed less and less while companies like General Electric sometimes pay no taxes at all. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality and government corruption news articles.


Death From Above: Confessions of a Killer Drone Operator
2015-11-19, Newsweek
Posted: 2015-11-30 15:09:12
http://www.newsweek.com/confessions-lethal-drone-operator-396541

In 2009, not long after his historic election and seven years after the first U.S. drone strike, President Barack Obama accepted the Nobel Peace Prize. Since then, however, deadly U.S. drone strikes have increased sharply, as have doubts about the program’s reliability and effectiveness. The latest criticism comes from Drone, a new documentary about the CIA’s covert drone war. To help promote the film and inveigh against the agency’s drone program ... four former operators - Stephen Lewis, Michael Haas, Cian Westmoreland and Brandon Bryant - appeared at a press conference. Speaking out can lead to veiled threats and prosecution. Which is why for years Bryant was the only drone veteran who openly rebuked the drone war. But his persistence and his appearance in the film, the other three say, inspired them to come forward. On multiple occasions, the men say they complained to their superiors about their concerns to no avail. Drone strikes kill far more civilians than the government admits. These deaths, they argue, wind up helping militant groups recruit new members and hurt the U.S.’s long-term security. By distancing soldiers from the battlefield, the operators suggest the people carrying out strikes may become even more desensitized to killing than their counterparts on the front lines. On some occasions, Haas says operators referred to children as “fun-sized terrorists” or “TITS,” terrorists in training.

Note: A human rights attorney has stated the four former Air Force drone operators-turned-whistleblowers mentioned above have had their credit cards and bank accounts frozen. How many more have not spoken out against these abuses for fear of retaliation like this? Read more about the major failings of US drone attacks. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.


'Gene drive': Scientists sound alarm over supercharged GM organisms which could spread in the wild and cause environmental disasters
2015-08-03, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-11-30 15:05:57
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/scientists-sound-alarm-over-superch...

A powerful new technique for generating “supercharged” genetically modified organisms that can spread rapidly in the wild has caused alarm among scientists. The development of so-called “gene drive” technology promises to revolutionize medicine and agriculture. However, scientists at the forefront of the development believe ... gene-drive technology poses a serious threat to the environment and human health if accidentally or deliberately released from a laboratory without adequate safeguards. Last week the US National Academy of Sciences initiated a wide-ranging review of gene-drive technology in “non-human organisms” and in this week’s journal Science a group of 27 leading geneticists call on the scientific community to be open and transparent about both the risks and benefits of gene drives. Researchers have likened gene-drive technology to a nuclear chain reaction because it allows GM genes to be amplified within a breeding population of insects or other animals without any further intervention once the trait has been initially introduced. This is the case even if the trait is non-beneficial to the organism. Laboratory experiments on fruit flies have shown that a modified gene introduced into one individual fly can take just a few generations to “infect” practically every other fly in the breeding population, in defiance of the normal rules of genetics which dictate a far slower spread.

Note: A large segment of the scientific community called for a moratorium on using this technology on humans. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


CNN Punished Its Own Journalist for Fulfilling a Core Duty of Journalism
2015-11-20, The Intercept
Posted: 2015-11-30 15:03:18
https://theintercept.com/2015/11/20/cnns-punishment-of-refugee-defending-jour...

CNN yesterday suspended its global affairs correspondent, Elise Labott, for two weeks for the crime of posting a tweet critical of the House vote to ban Syrian refugees. Whether by compulsion or choice, she then groveled in apology. Labott’s crime wasn’t that she expressed an opinion. It’s that she expressed the wrong opinion: After Paris, defending Muslims, even refugees, is strictly forbidden. I’ve spoken with friends who work at every cable network and they say the post-Paris climate is indescribably repressive in terms of what they can say and who they can put on air. When it comes to the Paris attacks, CNN has basically become state TV. Labott’s punishment comes just five days after two CNN anchors spent six straight minutes lecturing French Muslim civil rights activist Yasser Louati that he and all other French Muslims bear “responsibility” for the attack. In the wake of Paris, an already ugly and quite dangerous anti-Muslim climate has exploded. The leading GOP presidential candidate is speaking openly of forcing Muslims to register in databases, closing mosques, and requiring Muslims to carry special ID cards. Others are advocating exclusion of Muslim refugees (Cruz) and religious tests to allow in only “proven Christians” (Bush). That, by any measure, is a crisis of authoritarianism. And journalists have historically not only been permitted, but required, to raise their voice against such dangers.

Note: The New York Times recently reported that a Syrian passport found at a Paris bombing site was planted as part of a false evidence trail "to turn public opinion against Syrian refugees." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing media manipulation news articles from reliable sources.


How trustworthy are electronic voting systems in the US?
2015-06-05, Significance (An official magazine of the American Statistical Association)
Posted: 2015-11-30 15:00:09
http://www.statslife.org.uk/significance/politics/2288-how-trustworthy-are-el...

When you ... cast your vote for the various candidates and public propositions at an electronic voting machine, how confident are you that the results will be tabulated honestly? If you feel less than sanguine about it and do a bit of the research to assuage your doubts, be prepared to feel even less confident afterwards. My statistical analysis shows patterns indicative of vote manipulation in machines. These results form a pattern that goes across the nation and back a number of election cycles. The data reveals multiple (at least two) agents working independently to successfully alter voting results. The official report from the congressional hearing on [the 2004 Ohio presidential] election describes it as 'the abuse and manipulation of electronic voting machines and the arbitrary and illegal behavior of a number of elected and election officials which effectively disenfranchised tens of thousands of voters in order to change the outcome of an election.' For a thorough assessment, [read] 'Post-Election Audits: Restoring Trust in Elections' published by the Brennan Center for Justice. Voting machine software ... is proprietary and even the election officials are not allowed to inspect it. This is termed Black Box Voting and combined with Direct Recording Electronic (DRE) voting, which permits touchscreen machines and does not require a paper trail allows a situation ripe for exploitation. We have a serious pervasive and systematic problem with electronic voting machines.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing elections corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Spain ‘issues arrest warrant’ for Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu over 2010 Gaza flotilla attack
2015-11-18, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-11-30 14:57:50
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/spain-issues-arrest-warrant-fo...

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and seven other former and current government officials are at risk of arrest if they set foot in Spain, after a Spanish judge effectively issued an arrest warrant for the group. Spanish national court judge Jose de la Mata ordered the police and civil guard to notify him if Mr Netanyahu and the six other individuals enter the country, as their actions could see a case against them regarding the Freedom Flotilla attack of 2010 reopened. The other men named in the issue are former defence minister Ehud Barak, former foreign minister Avigdor Leiberman, former minister of strategic affairs Moshe Yaalon, former interior minister Eli Yishai, minister without portfolio Benny Begin and vice admiral Maron Eliezer, who was in charge of the operation. The case – which was put on hold by Judge de la Mata last year – was brought against the men following an attack by Israeli security forces against the Freedom Flotilla aid ships in 2010, which was trying to reach Gaza. It concerns the Mavi Marmara ship, the main civilian vessel in a fleet of six that were attempting to break an Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip. The six ships were carrying around 500 passengers, humanitarian aid and construction materials. The Israeli Defence Force stormed the ship in a raid that left nine human rights activists dead.

Note: A spokesperson for the Israeli foreign ministry commented, "We consider it to be a provocation." Autopsies of the activists killed were reported by The Guardian to contradict Israeli reports of the incident.


The litany of child abuse by Catholic priests that no longer shocks the world
2015-11-24, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-11-30 14:55:31
http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2015/nov/24/the-litany-of-child-abu...

Not long ago, Tuesday morning’s revelations at the royal commission into institutional responses to child abuse would have made headlines round the world. Priest after priest in the Melbourne archdiocese of the Catholic church was caught abusing children. And for decades bishop after bishop ignored these crimes. But Melbourne fits the now familiar pattern of the Catholic world. In Melbourne over the past 35 years, 454 people made claims or substantiated complaints about child sexual abuse by priests, religious employees or volunteers. Of those, 335 made claims against priests. Seven accused priests accounted for 54% of all claims. What sets the city apart from cities in Europe and America is how little the church has had to pay. Absent but everywhere was George Pell. Though other bishops living and dead will have their reputations raked over by the commission, the hearings over the next month will essentially assess the record of the man who now sits in Rome as the treasurer of the Catholic church. Father Peter Searson [abused] children in the poor parish of Doveton. Parents, parishioners and teachers all wanted the priest gone. Pell appears to have done little.

Note: Watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team titled "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads directly to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this sad subject. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


Up to 85% of child abuse in England remains undetected, study says
2015-11-23, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-11-30 14:53:31
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/nov/24/85-percent-child-abuse-england...

About 50,000 cases of sexual abuse were recorded by police and local authorities in the two years to March 2014. Official figures vastly underestimate the true scale of child sexual abuse. The actual number of children abused in that period is thought to be as many as 450,000. [A new] report, by the Office of the Children’s Commissioner (OCC), found that about 85% of sexually abused young people are not receiving help and treatment. The majority of victims remain unidentified because the services that should protect them, including police and social services, rely on children to speak out, says the report. Two-thirds of cases, both known and unknown to the authorities, are believed to be victims of abuse in the family. Anne Longfield, the children’s commissioner for England, said: “In recent years the terrible experiences of sexual abuse that some children have suffered in institutions or at the hands of groups of perpetrators have come to light and preventing and tackling these been made a priority.” It was time to “wake up”, Longfield said, and urgently address the most common form of child sexual abuse – that which takes place within families or their trusted circle.

Note: Watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team titled "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads directly to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this sad subject. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


Paedophile ring used boys home
2013-09-23, Sydney Morning Herald (One of Australia's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-11-30 14:51:09
http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/paedophile-ring-used-boys-home-20130922-2u7w6.html

An "organised ring" of paedophiles believed to include Anglican and Catholic clergy used a Sunday afternoon "children's Christian program" in the 1970s to sexually abuse boys at a church-run Wallsend boys home. The United Protestant Association has issued an unreserved apology. "These men changed from week to week, suggesting a larger, organised ring," UPA general manager Steve Walkerden and after-care support worker Graham Hercus said on Friday. "We are aware of a group of men who did come to the home in the 1970s for a number of years ... who routinely took smaller boys into downstairs rooms in the building and abused them." Anglican priest Peter Rushton - acknowledged by the church in 2010 as a sexual abuser of children - and "volunteer carer" and convicted child sex offender Robert Holland, are believed to have taken boys from the home. A third "volunteer carer" at Woodlands was quietly convicted of child sex offences more than a decade ago. Another "volunteer carer" from Germany sexually abused about 10 boys in the 1970s before leaving Australia. The UPA has [also] paid compensation and provided support to a woman for repeated sexual assault over a six-year period at its girls home, Ellimatta. Many children were placed in the homes by court order; others were placed there voluntarily by parents, usually because of marriage breakup or the death of a partner.

Note: Watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team titled "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads directly to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this sad subject. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


Kindness brings cancer patient back from the brink
2015-06-04, Vancouver Sun (One of Canada's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-11-30 14:48:52
http://www.vancouversun.com/touch/story.html?id=11109726

In late 2012, Brice Royer was lying on a bed in terrible pain, thinking about how to kill himself. Today, the pain is still there and the malignant tumour in his stomach is no smaller. But he has never been happier. A year ago, Royer, 31, decided to give and receive freely without the use of money in an effort to build community. Thinking he was staring down a death sentence, Royer [researched] and reflect on the causes of illness. Toxins in the environment. Loneliness. Stress. “The root cause (is) a lack of love in our society,” Royer says. “A lot of the problems that we have today - anything from the housing crisis in Vancouver, how expensive things are, to working at a stressful job, making ends meet and not having much time to have community or friends - all these things I feel led to a lot of health problems and in my case, can aggravate cancer.” Royer researched where the healthiest people in the world live and the lifestyle they practise. “They all take care of each other. They all have big families and small communities and they all have something called the gift economy. They are isolated from the market economy,” Royer explains. [He] suggested to a friend that they practise this within their own circle using a Facebook group. True to philosophy, he offered to pay someone else’s rent ... for a year instead of his own. The woman he helped was a chronically ill single mother. The biggest payoff, he says, is the community he’s built and the love and support he gets from friends.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


After Decades in a Food Desert, These Neighbors Are Building a $2 Million Co-op—And They Own It
2015-11-12, Yes! Magazine
Posted: 2015-11-30 14:46:49
http://www.yesmagazine.org/new-economy/after-decades-in-a-food-desert-these-n...

Guilford County, North Carolina, has 24 food deserts - high-poverty neighborhoods where at least one-third of the residents live a mile or more from a grocery store. People living in these neighborhoods are more likely to suffer from obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and more. Northeast Greensboro [has] been without a local grocery store for nearly 20 years. "People organized for years to attract a corporate grocery store to the community and were rebuffed every time,” says James Lamar Gibson. “When the spark was lit that we can do this for ourselves, that’s what resonated with ... the community.” Gibson [works] as a volunteer for the Renaissance Community Co-op. The idea of being an owner of the co-op has gotten a lot of residents really excited. In total RCC needs to raise $2.1 million, and they’re about 95 percent of the way there. With the initial fundraising almost complete, RCC is ready to take on the next steps of the project: getting the food and hiring employees. The goal is to work with as many local companies and producers as possible - from the food they buy to the delivery companies to the refrigeration systems. Organizers have made sure to let the community know that this won’t look like a typical co-op in a higher-income neighborhood. The neighborhood is predominantly made up of low-income black families, so the food and the prices will reflect that. The hiring ... will reflect that as well.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


These paintings were created by a blind man
2015-03-23, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-11-30 14:44:30
http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/art/news/these-paintings-were...

John Bramblitt of Denton, Texas, lost his vision 13 years ago due to complications with epilepsy and plunged into a deep depression, feeling disconnected from the world around him. He found a new way to express his experience of the world around him in painting however. Bramblitt learned to distinguish between different coloured paints by feeling their textures with his fingers, taught himself how to paint using raised lines and harnessed haptic visualization, enabling him to "see" his subjects through touch. While many of his portraits are taken from events in his life he experienced while sighted, he has also produced life-like paintings of people he's never actually seen, including his wife and son. Art was always a big part of his life but took on a new importance following his blindness. "Art reshaped my life," he said. Whilst continuing to create new works, Bramblitt teaches art workshops focusing on adaptive techniques for young artists with disabilities, for which he has received three Presidential Service Awards. You can buy originals and prints of John's work here.

Note: Don't miss the incredibly inspiring one-minute video of this inspiring blind artist.


Water bears' super resilience may be linked to foreign DNA
2015-11-24, Christian Science Monitor
Posted: 2015-11-30 14:42:38
http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2015/1124/Water-bears-super-resilience-may-b...

Tardigrades, also known as water bears, are nearly indestructible. The microscopic animals can survive boiling water, extreme cold, and even a trip to space. Tardigrades can even be frozen for a year, or 10, and return to life when they thaw. But these tough little animals are still surprising scientists. When scientists sequenced the genome of water bears, they found that 17.5 percent of the animals’ DNA came from other species. “We had no idea that an animal genome could be composed of so much foreign DNA,” study co-author Bob Goldstein said in a news release. “We knew many animals acquire foreign genes, but we had no idea that it happens to this degree.” Tardigrades have some 6,000 foreign genes, the scientists report in a paper published Monday. Foreign DNA appears in an organism’s genome through a process called horizontal gene transfer. In that process, species swap genetic material directly, instead of exclusively inheriting DNA from the organism’s parents. Dr. Goldstein and colleagues ... think the tardigrade’s defense mechanism for extreme circumstances actually opens the door for this foreign DNA. When the water bears are under extreme stress they curl up, expel their water and appear dead. The scientists think the animal’s DNA splits into tiny pieces during this process. When the animal starts to come back to life by rehydrating, their cells become leaky and can absorb molecules around the animal. As the animal stitches its own DNA back together, the foreign pieces can get woven in too.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Mass Surveillance Isn’t the Answer to Fighting Terrorism
2015-11-17, New York Times
Posted: 2015-11-23 14:04:00
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/18/opinion/mass-surveillance-isnt-the-answer-t...

It’s a wretched yet predictable ritual after each new terrorist attack: Certain politicians and government officials waste no time exploiting the tragedy for their own ends. The remarks on Monday by John Brennan, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, took that to a new and disgraceful low ... after coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris killed 129. Mr. Brennan complained about ... the sustained national outrage following the 2013 revelations by Edward Snowden, a former National Security Agency contractor, that the agency was using provisions of the Patriot Act to secretly collect information on millions of Americans’ phone records. It is hard to believe anything Mr. Brennan says. Last year, he bluntly denied that the C.I.A. had illegally hacked into the computers of Senate staff members conducting an investigation into the agency’s detention and torture programs when, in fact, it did. In 2011 ... he claimed that American drone strikes had not killed any civilians, despite clear evidence that they had. And his boss, James Clapper Jr., the director of national intelligence, has admitted lying to the Senate on the N.S.A.’s bulk collection of data. Even putting this lack of credibility aside, it’s not clear what extra powers Mr. Brennan is seeking. Most of the men who carried out the Paris attacks were already on the radar of intelligence officials in France and Belgium, where several of the attackers lived. The problem in this case was not a lack of data. In fact, indiscriminate bulk data sweeps have not been useful.

Note: The above is an excellent article by the New York Times editorial board. Yet the role of the largely subservient media, which strongly supported Bush's campaign to go to war in Iraq is ignored. Read this analysis to go even deeper. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about government corruption and the disappearance of privacy.


How Does ISIS Fund Its Reign of Terror?
2014-11-06, Newsweek
Posted: 2015-11-23 14:00:56
http://www.newsweek.com/2014/11/14/how-does-isis-fund-its-reign-terror-282607...

How can ISIS, cut off from the rest of the world by financial and trade sanctions, and under daily aerial and land bombardment by some of the richest countries in the world, afford to maintain a well-armed military and pay other bills? The terrorist group relies on ... cash, crude oil and contraband. The ISIS economy and its fighters predominantly rely on the production and sale of seized energy assets - Iraq has the fifth-largest proven crude oil reserves in the world. ISIS also depends on the steady income it extracts from private donors, the heavy taxation and extortion it levies on its captive population, the seizure of bank accounts and private assets in the lands it occupies, ransoms from kidnappings and the plundering of antiquities excavated from ancient palaces and archaeological sites. Grossing as much as $40 million or more over the past two years, ISIS has accepted funding from government or private sources in the oil-rich nations of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait - and a large network of private donors, including Persian Gulf royalty, businessmen and wealthy families. Only after widespread criticism ... did Saudi Arabia pass legislation in 2013 criminalizing financial support of terrorist organizations such as Al-Qaeda, Al-Nusra and ISIS. The lootings, ransoms and extortion ... provide a steady cash flow. But this is nothing compared to what oil trafficking provides.

Note: A carefully researched report on the covert origins of ISIS suggests the creation of terrorists is useful for Washington's elite. And isn't it interesting that Saudi Arabia has been chosen to a UN panel on human rights? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing terrorism news articles from reliable major media sources.


Years After 9/11, the War on Terror Is Accomplishing Everything bin Laden Hoped It Would
2015-09-08, The Nation
Posted: 2015-11-23 13:58:21
http://www.thenation.com/article/14-years-after-911-the-war-on-terror-is-acco...

Fourteen years later, thanks a heap, Osama bin Laden. With a small number of supporters, $400,000-$500,000, and 19 suicidal hijackers, most of them Saudis, you ... goaded us into doing what you had neither the resources nor the ability to do. George W. Bush and company used those murderous acts and the nearly 3,000 resulting deaths as an excuse to try to make the world theirs. It took them no time at all to decide to launch a “Global War on Terror” in up to 60 countries. Don’t you find it strange, looking back, just how quickly 9/11 set their brains aflame? Don’t you still find it eerie that, amid the wreckage of the Pentagon, the initial orders our secretary of defense gave his aides were to come up with plans for striking Iraq, even though he was already convinced that Al Qaeda had launched the attack? Washington’s post-9/11 policies in the Middle East helped lead to the establishment of the Islamic State’s “caliphate” in parts of fractured Iraq and Syria. The United States has gone into the business of robotic assassination big time, [and] Washington has regularly knocked off women and children while searching for militant leaders. Fourteen years later, don’t you find it improbable that our “war on terror” has so regularly devolved into a war of and for terror; that our methods ... have visibly promoted, not blunted, the spread of Islamic extremism; and that, despite this, Washington has generally not recalibrated its actions in any meaningful way? Fourteen years later, how improbable is that?

Note: A carefully researched report on the covert origins of ISIS suggests the creation of terrorists is useful for Washington's elite. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing terrorism news articles from reliable major media sources.


After Paris, there will be no stopping the surveillance state now
2015-11-19, CBC (Canada's public broadcasting system)
Posted: 2015-11-23 13:55:17
http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/surveillance-state-neil-macdonald-1.3325327

The tools European security agencies now have at their disposal ... would make any American or Canadian intelligence officer drool. Britain has literally created a surveillance state. The British Security Industry Authority estimated three years ago the government has installed about six million closed-circuit TV cameras in the public square; one for every 10 citizens. The French, too, have vastly expanded public video surveillance in recent years. And it's all been done with overwhelming support from the general public, which feels safer for the presence of the surveillance, never mind the lack of objective proof that they are more protected against outrages, which keep on occurring. Both England and France are former colonial powers that ... long ago subordinated individual rights to collective security. Canada and America more dearly cherish individual rights. Still, a surveillance state is growing here, too. David Lyon, a professor of surveillance studies at Queen's University, has identified several public surveillance trends, all of which he says are "increasing at an accelerating rate." Canada is not about to become Western Europe, he says, but "it is incumbent upon us as a society to think about the ethical consequences" of mass surveillance. [Some] would argue that the cameras are desperately needed tools, and that anyone who isn't doing anything wrong has nothing to worry about. That of course is the police state justification. They hate us because we are free, we are told. The fact that we've responded by giving up ever more freedom doesn't seem to matter.

Note: Many of the politicians publicly defending the surveillance state receive huge sums of money from private security companies. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about government corruption and the disappearance of privacy.


My white neighbor thought I was breaking into my own apartment. Nineteen cops showed up.
2015-11-18, Washington Post
Posted: 2015-11-23 13:52:45
https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2015/11/18/my-white-neighbor...

On Sept. 6, I locked myself out of my apartment in Santa Monica, Calif. A few hours and a visit from a locksmith later, I was inside my apartment and slipping off my shoes when I heard a man’s voice ... near my front window. I imagined a loiterer and opened the door to move him along. “What’s going on?” I asked. Two police officers had guns trained on me. They shouted: “Who’s in there with you? How many of you are there?” I had no idea what was happening, but I saw [that] something about me - a 5-foot-7, 125-pound black woman - frightened this man with a gun. I sat down, trying to look even less threatening. I again asked what was going on. I told the officers I didn’t want them in my apartment. They entered anyway. One pulled me, hands behind my back, out to the street. The neighbors were watching. Only then did I notice the ocean of officers. I counted 16. They still hadn’t told me why they’d come. Later, I learned that the Santa Monica Police Department had dispatched 19 officers after one of my neighbors reported a burglary at my apartment. It didn’t matter that I told the cops I’d lived there for seven months, told them about the locksmith, offered to show a receipt for his services and my ID. To many, the militarization of the police is primarily abstract or painted as occasional. That thinking allows each high-profile incident of aggressive police interaction with people of color - Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Freddie Gray - to be written off as an outlier. What happened to them did not happen to me, but it easily could have.

Note: For more along these lines, read about the increasing militarization of police, and see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about the erosion of civil liberties.


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