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Purveyor's Journal
Purveyor's Journal
December 15, 2011

Islamists Look To Extend Success In Egypt Polls

By Sarah Benhaida | AFP – 4 hrs ago

Voters poured into polling stations Wednesday in the second round of landmark elections that will shape Egypt's post-revolution future, with many backing Islamists who have already emerged as front-runners.

Some 18.8 million people were eligible to vote in the second round of the three-phase legislative polls, the first since Hosni Mubarak was toppled in February after 30 years in power.

The powerful Muslim Brotherhood, whose Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) clinched the most seats in the opening round, was eager to sustain the momentum.

"For a strong parliament, which meets the demands, the concerns and the priorities of the people, let's continue," the party said on its Facebook page.



December 15, 2011

Vast New Barrier Keeps Refugee Camp Out Of Holy City

By Majeda El Batsh | AFP – 52 mins ago

On the edge of Jerusalem's Shuafat refugee camp, the final touches are being put to a towering barrier and huge crossing point that locals say will hem them in and cut off the camp from the Holy City.

Running battles erupt almost daily between stone-throwing locals and Israeli security forces protecting work on the vast terminal which will soon be the only way into Jerusalem for the area's 50,000 residents.

Residents say they will be isolated from east Jerusalem, where most of them study, work and shop.

They will be left on the West Bank side of the barrier, while remaining technically inside the municipal boundaries of Jerusalem.



December 15, 2011

Tech Elites: U.S. Online Piracy Bill Mirrors Chinese, Iranian Policies

An assembly of U.S. Internet elites, captains of the most successful online businesses, published an open letter to Congress on Wednesday urging lawmakers to think long and hard before adopting bills that would force wide-reaching changes to the structure of the Web.

The letter, which will run as an advertisement in the pages of America’s most influential newspapers, comes just one day before a key House committee vote on a revised version of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). Most critics say the bill would create an Internet “blacklist” that forces ISPs, search engines, financial firms and advertisers to de-list websites accused of copyright infringement, all without any actual court hearing or oversight — which is bad enough, but the letter’s authors took their criticism to another level entirely.

In their attack on SOPA and the Senate version of the bill, known as the PROTECT IP Act, the tech leaders claimed the proposals would put U.S. tech policy on par with “China, Malaysia and Iran.”

“We urge Congress to think hard before changing the regulation that underpins the Internet,” they wrote. “Let’s not deny the next generation of entrepreneurs and founders the same opportunities that we all had.”



December 14, 2011

Iranian Official In Russia To Discuss U.S. Drone, Nuclear Issues

TEHRAN, Dec. 12 (Xinhua) -- Iran has sent a senior official to Moscow to meet Russian officials over the recent U.S. drone disputes as well as the nuclear issue, local Tehran Times daily reported Monday.

Saeed Jalili, secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, has travelled to Moscow to discuss the recent violation of Iran's airspace by a U.S. spy drone, the daily said.

Iranian media reported last week that the Iranian military downed a RQ-170 U.S. reconnaissance drone aircraft in the eastern part of the country after finding that it had transgressed the eastern border. The state TV showed on Thursday the footage of the U.S. drone.

Iran has urged the United Nations to condemn the U.S. drone's violation of the Iranian airspace, saying that Tehran would seek " clear and effective measures" to end such "dangerous and unlawful acts."



December 14, 2011

Hundreds In Fallujah Burn U.S. Flag To Celebrate Troops Pulling Out Of Iraq

Agence France-Presse Dec 14, 2011 – 9:36 AM ET

FALLUJAH, Iraq — Hundreds of Iraqis set alight U.S. and Israeli flags on Wednesday as they celebrated the impending pullout of American forces from the country in the former insurgent bastion of Fallujah.

Shouting slogans in support of the “resistance,” the demonstrators held up banners and placards inscribed with phrases like, “Now we are free” and “Fallujah is the flame of the resistance.”

Surrounded by the Iraqi army, demonstrators carried posters bearing photos of apparent insurgents, faces covered and carrying weapons.

They also held up pictures of U.S. soldiers killed and military vehicles destroyed in the two major offensives against the city in 2004.



December 14, 2011

Human Rights Attorney: Defense Bill Will ‘Gut The Constitution’

Raha Wala, Advocacy Counsel for Human Rights First, told Countdown host Keith Olbermann on Tuesday night that a controversial provision in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012 would practically destroy habeas corpus — a guaranteed trial for those accused of a crime.

Sections 1031 and 1032 of the bill would authorize the military to indefinitely detain suspected terrorists anywhere in the world without charge or trial.

Obama has threatened to veto the entire bill, which has been considered must-pass legislation for 50 years, because of the provisions. Lawmakers have amended the legislation in hopes of preventing a presidential veto, but the current bill would still allow suspects to be detained indefinitely in military custody.

“We’re calling on everyone to contact the president and tell him that he needs to stand up for his promise and veto this bill,” said Wala.



December 14, 2011

Barak: Treat Jewish Extremists Like Terrorists

Statement Follows Settler Attack on IDF Base

Published December 14, 2011.

Israel needs to see if the actions of right-wing extremist could be legally defined as terror, Defense Minister Ehud Barak said on Wednesday, as Justice Minister Yaakov Ne’eman weighed emergency measures in the wake of recent “price tag” attacks and assaults on IDF troops.

Barak’s comments came after some 50 settlers and right-wing activists entered a key West Bank military base on Tuesday, throwing rocks, burning tires, and vandalizing military vehicles.

In an apparent “price tag” attack earlier Wednesday, anonymous perpetrators set a historical Jerusalem mosque alight, spray painting phrases such as “Muhammad is dead” and “Muhammad is a pig” on its walls.

December 14, 2011

U.S. Winter to Miss Biting Cold of Past Two Seasons

The biting cold of the past two winters in the U.S. may be delayed until January, if it comes at all, easing demand for heating fuels during their peak season.

While frigid weather may arrive in much of the U.S. this month, above-normal temperatures will follow, said Jim Rouiller, senior energy meteorologist at Planalytics Inc. in Berwyn, Pennsylvania.

Heating oil prices jumped to a two-year high last December and gas rose to the highest level in four months as below-normal temperatures and snow boosted demand for the fuels. Natural gas futures today dropped to a 27-month low on abundant supplies and forecasts for milder weather this winter.

“The very mild conditions which have delayed the start of the traditional winter heating season have hit gas prices really hard,” said Teri Viswanath, director of commodity strategies at BNP Paribas SA in Houston, said by phone on Dec. 6. “We have a very weak demand environment.”



December 13, 2011

Gas Mask Distribution To Be Suspended

Despite concern the country could come under a chemical attack due to the growing instability in Syria, the IDF Home Front Command plans to suspend distribution of gas masks to the public in two months due to a government refusal to allocate funds necessary to continue their production.

Currently, 3.5 million citizens have received new gas masks under the IDF’s distribution program, which began in 2006 with the collection of the public’s old gas masks.

Behind the shortage is a disagreement between the Defense Ministry and the Treasury over where the funding for the continued refurbishment and distribution of the masks will come from. The Defense Ministry has asked for a budget supplement while the Treasury has argued the money should come from the regular defense budget.

A senior Home Front Command officer told The Jerusalem Post on Monday the distribution would come to an end in February after the remaining budget ended.



December 13, 2011

Group Leading Boycott Of Muslim Show Hacked, Threatened By ‘Anonymous’

A little known Christian group that’s been leading a boycott of a reality television show about American Muslims saw their website hacked and defaced last night by an unknown person claiming to be part of the hacker activist group “Anonymous.”

The hacker said they had obtained all of the Florida Family Association’s (FFA) donor information, including credit card numbers, but weren’t releasing them because it would hurt members of the 99 percent.

The hacker also said that a further investigation was underway into the group’s supporters, threatening, “f i find information such as anyone being a part of other hate groups such as the Klan or anything similar all bets are off for those people.”

The FFA has come to infamy in recent weeks after home supply store Lowes decided to join their boycott, pulling advertisements from a show called “All-American Muslim,” which showcases the lives of Americans who follow Islam.



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