US & Israel – Friends or Foes?, Saudi Prince's Huge Drug Smuggling, EU Votes to Protect Snowden
November 2, 2015
Below are key excerpts of revealing news articles on the US and Israel's use of spies against each other raising the question of whether they are friends or foes, a Saudi royal prince caught smuggling two tons of illicit drugs through Beirut's airport, New England's sexually abusive elite prep school culture, and more.
Read also wonderfully inspiring articles on the EU's recent symbolic vote to protect whistleblower Edward Snowden from rendition or prosecution by US authorities, the scientific basis for positive thinking, a breakthrough "tractor beam" that can precisely manipulate objects with sound waves, and more. You can also skip to this section now.
Each excerpt is taken verbatim from the major media website listed at the link provided. If any link fails, see this page. The most important sentences are highlighted. And don't miss the "What you can do" section below the summaries. By educating ourselves and spreading the word, we can and will build a brighter future.
Special note: Watch an excellent presentation by scholar Richard Dolan on the link between UFOs and 9/11. Watch a fascinating documentary on communication from the dead through most unusual means. Read a revealing patent (#7,629,918) describing a "multifunctional radio frequency directed energy system" which can cause "cause high energy damage or disruption of the target." Watch a great, short video titled "You're more beautiful than you think."
Quote of the week: "If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything."
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Spy vs. Spy: Inside the Fraying U.S.-Israel Ties
October 23, 2015, Wall Street Journal
The U.S. closely monitored Israel’s military bases and eavesdropped on secret communications in 2012, fearing its longtime ally might try to carry out a strike on Fordow, Iran’s most heavily fortified nuclear facility. Nerves frayed at the White House after senior officials learned Israeli aircraft had flown in and out of Iran in what some believed was a dry run for a commando raid on the site. Worried that Israel might ignite a regional war, the White House sent a second aircraft carrier to the region and readied attack aircraft, a senior U.S. official said, “in case all hell broke loose.” The two countries, nursing a mutual distrust, each had something to hide. Instead of talking to each other, the allies kept their intentions secret. To figure out what they weren’t being told, they turned to their spy agencies to fill gaps. They employed deception, not only against Iran, but against each other. After working in concert for nearly a decade to keep Iran from an atomic bomb, the U.S. and Israel split over the best means: diplomacy, covert action or military strikes. In 2010, the risk of covert action became clear. A computer virus dubbed Stuxnet, deployed jointly by the U.S. and Israel to destroy Iranian centrifuges ... had inadvertently spread across the Internet. The Israelis wanted to launch cyberattacks against a range of Iranian institutions, according to U.S. officials. But the breach made Mr. Obama more cautious, officials said, for fear of triggering Iranian retaliation, or damaging the global economy if a virus spread uncontrollably.
Note: This article is also available at this link. When the Stuxnet computer virus got loose, it began attacking European companies. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing intelligence agency corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.
Saudi prince held after seizure of two tons of amphetamines at Beirut airport
October 26, 2015, The Telegraph (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
A Saudi prince has been detained at Beirut airport in Lebanon after two tons of an amphetamine drug popular with Syrian rebels was found on a private jet. Prince Abdel Mohsen Bin Walid Bin Abdulaziz and four other men were held after what was described as the biggest ever drugs bust at the city’s main Rafik Hariri International Airport. They were allegedly "attempting to smuggle about two tons of Captagon pills and some cocaine", a security source was quoted as saying. Captagon is a brand name for the widely used amphetamine phenethylline. Although this type of amphetamine has been prescribed in the past to treat childhood and other behavioural disorders, it is now used overwhelmingly as a stimulant in the Middle East. It has long been banned in the West. It is the drug of choice for front-line fighters on both sides in the Syrian war. It is unclear where the pills allegedly found in Beirut were ultimately to be sold, although the plane was said to be heading back to Saudi Arabia. That would fit one of the more unexpected side-effects noted of the Syrian war – the country’s growing role as an exporter of illegal drugs. There have been reports that Syrian suppliers to both sides of the conflict have become so successful in manufacturing Captagon that it is now an export product, smuggled through Lebanon to a broader Middle East market. The drugs were stuffed into 40 suitcases, according to reports.
Note: So the Saudi royals are caught red-handed in possibly Lebanon's biggest drug bust ever. Remember Saudi Arabia is run by the royal family. How many other governments are secretly involved in drug running? Reports from 25-year veteran of the DEA turned best-selling author and journalist Michael Levine point towards a troubling answer. Read this report to learn more about how Saudi crimes are covered up by powerful forces and why this prince will be freed.
Former prep school student cleared of rape, but convicted of misdemeanors
August 28, 2015, Los Angeles Times/Associated Press
A graduate of an exclusive New England prep school was cleared of felony rape but convicted of misdemeanor sex offenses Friday against a 15-year-old freshman girl in a case that exposed a campus tradition in which seniors competed to see how many younger students they could have sex with. A jury of nine men and three women took eight hours to reach its verdict in the case against 19-year-old Owen Labrie, of Tunbridge, Vt., who was accused of forcing himself on the girl in a dark and noisy mechanical room at St. Paul's School in Concord, N.H., two days before he graduated in 2014. Labrie ... was acquitted of the most serious charges against him - three counts of felony rape, each punishable by 10 to 20 years in prison - but was found guilty of three counts of misdemeanor sexual assault and other offenses. Each count carries up to a year behind bars. The 159-year-old boarding school ... has long been a training ground for politicians, Nobel laureates, corporate executives and other members of the country's elite. The rape was part of Senior Salute ... described to detectives as a competition in which graduating seniors tried to have sex with underclassmen and kept score on a wall behind a set of washing machines. Alumni of St. Paul's include Secretary of State John F. Kerry, who graduated in 1962 alongside former FBI Director Robert Mueller. Three Pulitzer prize winners ... also attended the school, as did at least 13 U.S. ambassadors.
Note: Graduating seniors of this elite prep school compete to have sex with as many girls as they can. They then go on to assume positions of power. It's time for this culture to change. To help in this vital effort, please educate yourself by watching the 60 Minutes documentary "Spies, Lords, and Predators" and the suppressed Discovery Channel documentary "Conspiracy of Silence." Then spread the word far and wide. Thank you! For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.
Horace Mann alum details shocking sexual abuse of students at elite prep school in new book
October 24, 2015, New York Daily News
Amos Kamil, the Horace Mann alum who first exposed the shocking story of sexually abused students at the elite prep school, knew only about half of what happened. In the aftermath of the furor ignited by his 2012 article in The New York Times Magazine, many more victims stepped forward. Only then did the human toll of the abuse become clear. The Bronx school and its powerful backers adopted a ruthless stance with the sex-abuse survivors. While the sexual abuse lasted from the 1960s into the 1990s, the school ignored repeated warnings. One guidance counselor was said to listen sympathetically before putting his own sexual moves on a student. As the survivors emerged, [they formed] support groups to share their stories. One former student, Jon Seiger, [claimed to have been] victimized by eight different teachers, suggesting the predators procured the victims and protected one another. When Kamil called the Bronx district attorney’s office, he was informed that Seiger’s seemingly far-fetched account was credible. As many as 64 students were abused by 22 faculty and staff members. When 25 of the survivors ... agreed to mediation, Horace Mann’s board played hardball. New York State’s strict statute of limitations precluded the victims’ getting their day in court, so a financial settlement was the school’s only opportunity to address the wrong. Horace Mann, its board populated by international hedge fund managers and real estate titans, settled for between $4 million and $5 million.
Note: Amos Kamil has published the book "Great is the Truth: Secrecy, Scandal, and the Quest for Justice at the Horace Mann School" about this horrifying institution. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.
Why putting bank bosses behind bars is still nigh on impossible
May 23, 2015, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Since the 2008 banking crisis led to multibillion-pound bailouts, some bankers have ended up behind bars. However, to many, the list seems short when compared with the $235bn of fines that Reuters calculates have been imposed on 20 major banks in the past seven years for market rigging, sanctions busting, money laundering and mis-selling mortgage bonds in the runup to the 2008 crisis. Robert Jenkins, a former Bank of England policymaker [says] one reason regulators backed away from proceedings against individuals is fear. This dates back to 2002, when accountancy firm Arthur Andersen was convicted of destroying documents related to its audits of Enron. The prosecution was overturned in 2005, too late to save what had been one of the world’s biggest accountants from collapse. There was, Jenkins said, “fear by the US authorities of a banking version of Arthur Andersen at a time of financial fragility”. But he lists other problems, [such as] lobbying by bankers and the naivete of regulators. Jenkins added the banks should ... face the threat of being broken up: “When it comes to the systematic wrongdoing on their watch, either the senior executives knew, did not know or cannot be expected to know. If they knew they are complicit. If they did not know they are incompetent. And if the banks are so large and complex that they cannot be expected to know, then they are a walking argument for breaking up the banks.”
Note: After the bailout in 2008, the percentage of US banking assets held by the big banks has almost doubled. Could this possibly have been planned? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in government and in the financial industry.
Iceland convicts bad bankers and says other nations can act
February 12, 2015, CNBC/Reuters
Iceland's government appointed a special prosecutor to investigate its bankers after the world's financial systems were rocked by the discovery of huge debts and widespread poor corporate governance. "This ... sends a strong message that will wake up discussion," special prosecutor Olafur Hauksson told Reuters. "It shows that these financial cases may be hard, but they can also produce results." The country's efforts contrast with the United States and particularly Europe, where though some banks have been fined, few executives have been tried and voters suffering post-crisis austerity conditions feel bankers got off lightly. Iceland struggled initially to appoint a special prosecutor. Hauksson ... was encouraged to put in for the job after the initial advertisement drew no applications. Icelandic lower courts have convicted the chief executives of all three of its largest banks for their responsibility in [the] crisis. They also convicted former chief executives of two other major banks, Glitnir and Landsbanki, for charges ranging from fraud and market manipulation. Many Icelanders have been frustrated that justice has been slow. The prosecutors' office has been hit by budget cuts since it was set up. But Hauksson believes the existing rulings mean there is less chance of similar scandals in the future. "There is some indication that the banks are more cautious," he said. Asked whether he would take the job again ... Hauksson replied, laughing: "Yes. And I'd probably be the only applicant again."
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing financial industry corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.
Three charts that show Iceland's economy recovered after it imprisoned bankers and let banks go bust - instead of bailing them out
June 11, 2015, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Six years ago ... Iceland made the shocking decision to let its banks go bust. Iceland also allowed bankers to be prosecuted as criminals – in contrast to the US and Europe, where ... chief executives escaped punishment. While the UK government nationalised Lloyds and RBS with tax-payers’ money and the US government bought stakes in its key banks, Iceland ... said it would shore up domestic bank accounts. Everyone else was left to fight over the remaining cash. It also imposed capital controls restricting what ordinary people could do with their money. The plan worked. Iceland took a huge financial hit, just like every other country caught in the crisis. This year the International Monetary Fund declared that Iceland had achieved economic recovery 'without compromising its welfare model' of universal healthcare and education. Other measures of progress like the country’s unemployment rate, compare ... well with countries like the US. Rather than maintaining the value of the krona artificially, Iceland chose to accept inflation. This pushed prices higher at home but helped exports abroad – in contrast to many countries in the EU, which are now fighting deflation. This year, Iceland will become the first European country that hit crisis in 2008 to beat its pre-crisis peak of economic output.
Note: Iceland's plan to retake control of its money supply from the banks was labelled "Radical" by mainstream economists. Now we learn that their plan rooted out financial industry corruption and successfully got their economy back on track.
Powerful admiral punishes suspected whistleblowers, still gets promotion
October 21, 2015, Washington Post
The Navy is poised to promote the admiral in charge of its elite SEAL teams and other commando units even though Pentagon investigators determined that he illegally retaliated against staff members who he mistakenly suspected were whistleblowers. Rear Adm. Brian L. Losey was investigated five times by the Defense Department’s inspector general after subordinates complained that he had wrongly fired, demoted or punished them during a vengeful but fruitless hunt for the person who had anonymously reported him for a minor travel-policy infraction. After conducting separate, years-long investigations that involved more than 100 witnesses and 300,000 pages of e-mails, the inspector general upheld complaints from three of the five staff members. In each of those cases, it recommended that the Navy take action against Losey for violating whistleblower-protection laws, the documents show. The Navy, however, dismissed the findings this month and decided not to discipline Losey. He now leads the Naval Special Warfare Command. The previously undisclosed investigations into one of the Navy’s top SEALs underscore the weakness of the military’s whistleblower-protection law and how rarely violators are punished. Of the 1,196 whistleblowercases closed by the Defense Department during the 12 months ending March 31, only 3 percent were upheld by investigators. The complaints against Losey also illustrate the Pentagon’s long-standing reluctance to discipline top brass for wrongdoing and how the military typically conceals misconduct investigations from public view.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing military corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.
Ex-Goldman Banker and Fed Employee Will Plead Guilty in Document Leak
October 26, 2015, New York Times
A former Goldman Sachs banker suspected of taking confidential documents from a source inside the government has agreed to plead guilty, a rare criminal action on Wall Street, where Goldman itself is facing an array of regulatory penalties over the leak. The banker and his source, who at the time of the leak was an employee at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, one of Goldman’s regulators, will accept a plea deal from federal prosecutors that could send them to prison for up to a year. Under a tentative deal ... Goldman would pay a fine of $50 million. For Goldman and the New York Fed, the case is likely to give new life to an embarrassing episode that illustrated the blurred lines between their institutions. Perhaps more than any other bank, Goldman swaps employees with the government, earning it the nickname “Government Sachs.” While the so-called revolving door is common on Wall Street, the investigation [affirms] the public’s concerns that regulators and bankers, when intermingled, occasionally form unholy alliances. The Goldman banker, Rohit Bansal, previously spent seven years as a regulator at the New York Fed.
Goldman pays $50M fine for Fed data leak
October 28, 2015, USA Today
According to the New York Department of Financial Services, a banking regulator, Goldman hired Rohit Bansal from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in May 2014, "in large part for the regulatory experience and knowledge he had gained while working at the New York Fed." Goldman hired Bansal despite the fact that he had been forced to resign from the Fed for breaking the rules there. Once at Goldman, Bansal was instructed to work on a bank that he had supervised while at the Fed, despite explicit prohibitions against him doing so, NYDFS said. Bansal later used confidential information, some of which he obtained from his prior employment at the NY Fed and some of which he obtained from from a former NY Fed colleague, in his work on the bank. To resolve the matter, Goldman has agreed to pay $50 million and accept a three-year "voluntary abstention" from accepting new consulting engagements of NYDFS regulated entities. Goldman also agreed to admit that a former employee engaged in the criminal theft of confidential information and that Goldman management "failed to effectively supervise its employee to prevent this theft from occurring," NYDFS said. In September 2014, for example, Bansal attended the birthday dinner of a former Fed colleague at Peter Luger's. Immediately after the dinner, Bansal emailed his boss at Goldman "divulging confidential information concerning the regulated entity, specifically, the relevant component of the upcoming examination rating," NYDFS said.
Key Articles From Years Past
Congress insiders: Above the law?
November 11, 2011, CBS News
The same insider trading that can land a regular citizen in jail is perfectly legal for members of Congress. Steve Kroft reports on how America's lawmakers can legally make tidy profits on information only they know, simply because they won't pass a law against themselves. Among the revelations in Kroft's report: Members of Congress have bought stock in companies while laws that could affect those companies were being debated in the House or Senate. At least one representative made significant stock purchases the day after he and other members of Congress attended a secret meeting in September 2008, where the Fed chair and the treasury secretary informed them of the imminent global economic meltdown. The meeting was so confidential that cell phones and other digital devices were confiscated before it began. Efforts to make such insider trading off limits to Washington's lawmakers have never been able to get traction. Former Rep. Brian Baird says he spent half of his 12 years in Congress trying to get co-sponsors for a bill that would ban insider trading in Congress and also set some rules up to govern conflicts of interest. In 2004, he and Rep. Louise Slaughter introduced the "Stock Act" to stop the insider trading. How far did they get? "We didn't get anywhere. Just flat died," he tells Kroft.
WikiLeaks: US Should Retaliate Against EU for Genetically Modified Resistance
December 20, 2010, Huffington Post
WikiLeaked cables released over the weekend revealed more about the US' role as a global bully. In a 2007 cable from Craig Stapleton, then US Ambassador to France, he encouraged the US government to "reinforce our negotiating position with the EU on agricultural biotechnology by publishing a retaliation list." A list, he added, that "causes some pain across the EU since this is a collective responsibility." The stated reason for their attack was that "Europe is moving backwards not forwards" on GMOs, with "France playing a leading role, along with Austria, Italy and even the [EU] Commission." The Ambassador was concerned that France and others would put a ban on the cultivation of Monsanto's GM corn seeds. According to the cable, the Ambassador ... was also upset about France's draft biotech law that "would make farmers and seed companies legally liable for pollen drift." This concept that the "polluter pays" is a foundational principle of US law - except for GMOs. Offering consumers a choice on GMOs is not on the US government agenda. Stapleton's tone in the letter was insistent. "We should not be prepared to cede on cultivation because of our considerable planting seed business in Europe." He said, "Moving to retaliation will make clear that the current path has real costs to EU interests and could help strengthen European pro-biotech voices."
Note: For lots more showing US commitment to spread frankenfoods, see this article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.
EU Parliament votes to protect Edward Snowden
October 29, 2015, CNN
The European Parliament voted Thursday in support of a resolution that calls on member states to protect Edward Snowden from extradition. The vote ... has no legal force. The resolution urges nations to drop criminal charges and "consequently prevent extradition or rendition by third parties, in recognition of his status as whistle-blower and international human rights defender." Snowden called Thursday's vote a "game-changer." "This is not a blow against the US Government, but an open hand extended by friends. It is a chance to move forward," he wrote.The Justice Department has said Snowden would face criminal prosecution if he returns to the United States. He's been charged with three felony counts, including violations of the U.S. Espionage Act. Snowden told the BBC this month that he has offered "many times" to go to prison in the United States as part of a deal to return from exile in Russia, but is still waiting for an answer from the American government. In response to Thursday's vote, U.S. State Department spokesman John Kirby said the U.S. policy on Snowden has not changed. "He needs to come back to the United States and face the due process and the judicial process here in the United States.
Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.
How Science Helps Us Find the Good
October 24, 2015, Daily Good
In a study published in the January edition of the journal Mindfulness, psychologists ... asked 313 adults if they had helped anyone during the previous week. Eighty-five percent said they had — by, say, listening to a friend’s problems, babysitting, donating to charity, or volunteering. This small study reveals a truth that is consistently demonstrated in many domains of research: We care deeply for one other, and ... would rather help our fellow beings than not. Even more, the science shows that refusing to help others can have debilitating, long-term mental and physical consequences for ourselves. Isolation hurts, physically; so does aggression. Every angry word we utter fries neurons and wears out our hearts. Here’s an experiment you can perform right now: Think about something stressful that happened to you during the past week. Now scan your body: How does your chest, stomach, or neck feel? Then think about something good that happened during the same period, however small. Now what happens in your body? Did you feel any difference? The research predicts that the stressful memory caused you physical discomfort. Your tight chest and clenched stomach doesn’t make the world a better place. So what can you do? Science has an answer, and it starts with counting ... the good things in life. That doesn’t mean we ignore the bad. But all too often our negativity bias leads us to see only the bad, in other people as well as in ourselves. By counting the good things, we see reality more clearly.
Note: The new site Greater Good in Action offers concrete, research-tested practices for individuals to cultivate strengths like awe, gratitude, empathy, and compassion.
How the sonic 'tractor beam' levitates and manipulates objects
October 28, 2015, Christian Science Monitor
It may seem straight out of "Star Trek," but it's real: Scientists have created a sonic "tractor beam" that can pull, push and pirouette objects that levitate in thin air. The sonic tractor beam relies on a precisely timed sequence of sound waves that create a region of low pressure that traps tiny objects that can then be manipulated solely by sound waves. Though the new demonstration was just a proof of concept, the same technique could be adapted to remotely manipulate cells inside the human body or target the release of medicine locked in acoustically activated drug capsules, said study co-author Bruce Drinkwater. The principle behind the new system is simple: Sound waves, which are waves of high and low pressure that travel through a medium such as air, produce force. "We've all experienced the force of sound," Drinkwater told Live Science. "It's a question of harnessing that force." By tightly orchestrating the release of these sound waves, it should be possible to create a region with low pressure that effectively counteracts gravity. Drinkwater, his Ph.D. student Asier Marzo and other colleagues ... found three different acoustic force fields. One works like tweezers and seems to grab the particles in thin air. Another traps the object in a high-pressure cage. The third type of force field acts a bit like a swirling tornado, with a rotating high-pressure field surrounding a low-pressure, quiet "eye" that holds the object in place.
Note: Watch a video of this incredible tractor beam in action.
What are the Secrets to a Happy Life?
October 25, 2015, Daily Good
The Grant Study ... is now the longest longitudinal study of biosocial human development ever undertaken, and is still on-going. The study’s goal was to identify the key factors to a happy and healthy life. In 2009, I delved into the Grant Study data to establish a Decathlon of Flourishing - a set of ten accomplishments that covered many different facets of success. Two of the items in the Decathlon had to do with economic success, four with mental and physical health, and four with social supports and relationships. Then I set out to see how these accomplishments correlated, or didn’t, with three gifts of nature and nurture - physical constitution, social and economic advantage, and a loving childhood. The results were as clear-cut as they were startling. In contrast with the weak and scattershot correlations among the biological and socioeconomic variables, a loving childhood - and other factors like empathic capacity and warm relationships as a young adult - predicted later success in all ten categories of the Decathlon. What’s more, success in relationships was very highly correlated with both economic success and strong mental and physical health. In short, it was a history of warm intimate relationships ... that predicted flourishing. The Grant Study finds that nurture trumps nature. And by far the most important influence on a flourishing life is love. Not early love exclusively, and not necessarily romantic love. But love early in life facilitates not only love later on, but also the other trappings of success, such as high income and prestige.
Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.
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