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Member since: Wed Oct 7, 2015, 08:51 AM
Number of posts: 2,208

Journal Archives

Saudi prince flogged in court-ordered punishment - newspaper

Source: Reuters

A prince of Saudi Arabia's ruling Al Saud family was given lashes in a prison in Jeddah as a court-ordered punishment, a Saudi newspaper said on Wednesday, less than a month after the kingdom executed another prince for murder.

Okaz daily did not disclose the offense for which the prince was punished nor did it disclose his identity. It said he was also ordered to serve a prison sentence.

Publication of the prince's flogging, carried out by a policeman on Monday after medical checks to ensure the prince was strong enough to endure the punishment, was unusual.

Some Saudi social media users said it showed Islamic law did not differentiate between a prince and ordinary Saudis. Others saw it as a tactic to calm public disquiet over economic belt-tightening by the government.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-saudi-prince-lashing-idUSKBN12X0KF

There's like, what, 3,000 Saudi princes? More?

Oh well, nice to see our staunch ally administering 17th century forms of justice.

I suppose that's progress for them.

Taiwan's KMT party tells China it is pushing for peace

Source: Reuters

Taiwan's opposition Kuomintang (KMT) party is pushing for peace with mainland China and holds out the possibility of a peace pact, the party's chairwoman told Chinese leader Xi Jinping on Tuesday, the party said.

Xi, general secretary of the Communist Party and China's president, met a delegation led by KMT chairwoman Hung Hsiu-Chu at Beijing's Great Hall of the People, the Xinhua news agency reported.

Taiwan, which relies on the United States for arms sales, has ruled itself as a rival to China since the end of a Chinese civil war in 1949. Beijing sees the island as a renegade province that must be reunited with the mainland, by force if necessary.

Hung, once a presidential candidate, said the KMT would play an active role in pushing for the "institutionalisation" of peaceful relations between the two sides and for the possibility of a peace pact, the KMT said in a statement released in Taiwan.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-taiwan-china-idUSKBN12W3VJ

Taiwan is a vibrant democracy, its nice to see that a major political party like the KMT thinks that peaceful relations with mainland China are not only an aspiration but are an achievable goal.

Give peace a chance.

Jailed anti-Putin activist says he is being tortured in jail

Source: Reuters

A Russian opposition activist who became the first person to be jailed under a new law for repeatedly staging peaceful anti-Kremlin protests says he is being tortured in prison and fears for his life.

A Moscow court sentenced Ildar Dadin, 34, to three years in prison in December for holding a series of one-man protests, although his term was reduced to two and a half years on appeal.

Russian rights activists regard Dadin, an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin and his policies, as a political prisoner. The authorities say Dadin broke a law, introduced after big anti-Kremlin protests, that criminalizes anyone who violates protest rules more than twice in 180 days.

In a letter to his wife from prison in northwest Russia, published on Tuesday by the online news portal Meduza, Dadin said he was being subjected to beatings in which around 10 prison guards would kick him at the same time. He said he had also had been hung up like a piece of meat with his hands handcuffed behind his back, that he had been stripped and threatened with rape, and that the prison governor had warned him he would be murdered if he complained.

"Regular beatings, bullying, humiliation, insults, intolerable detention conditions – it's happening to the other prisoners as well," the letter said.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-russia-politics-opposition-torture-idUSKBN12W4CS

I am just glad that peaceful protestors in the US are not arrested arbitrarily and jailed so harshly as they are in Russia...

oh... wait...

"Documentary film-makers face decades in prison for taping oil pipeline protests

Deia Schlosberg and Lindsey Grayzel face felony charges that first amendment advocates say are part of a growing number of attacks on freedom of the press

Two documentary film-makers are facing decades in prison for recording US oil pipeline protests, with serious felony charges that first amendment advocates say are part of a growing number of attacks on freedom of the press.

The controversial prosecutions of Deia Schlosberg and Lindsey Grayzel are moving forward after a judge in North Dakota rejected “riot” charges filed against Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman for her high-profile reporting at the Dakota Access pipeline protests.

But authorities in other parts of North Dakota and in Washington state have continued to target other film-makers over their recent reporting on similar demonstrations, raising concerns that the lesser-known journalists are not getting the same kind of public support and national attention."


Jailing peaceful protestors or even just intimidating them with threats of lengthy prison sentences is unconscionable. Honestly, we're not acting that much better than the Russians in this regard.

But then, we do imprison more people than any other country in the world:

Ranking Title Prison Population Total
1 United States of America 2 217 947
2 China 1 649 804
3 Russian Federation 645 350
4 Brazil 622 202
5 India 418 536

Our use of imprisonment to oppress and disenfranchise millions of African-American and other minorities is a disgrace.

Islamic State kills 40 near Mosul, tries to move 25,000 to use as shields, U.N. says

Source: Reuters

Islamic State militants killed 40 former members of the Iraqi Security Forces near Mosul on Saturday and threw their bodies in the Tigris river, U.N. human rights spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani said on Tuesday, citing reports from the field.

IS also tried to transport about 25,000 civilians from Hammam al-Alil, a town south of Mosul, on dozens of trucks and minibuses during the hours of darkness early on Monday, probably for use as human shields in defense of IS positions, she said.

Most of the trucks, which were heading toward the Tal Afar district, turned back under pressure from patrolling aircraft, but some buses did reach Abu Saif, 15 km (10 miles) north of Hammam al-Alil, she said. "We have grave concerns for these and tens of thousands of other civilians who have reportedly been forcibly relocated by ISIL (Islamic State) in the past two weeks," she said.

IS fighters were taking people closer and closer to Mosul city and putting them close to their offices and to installations that could constitute military targets, Shamdasani said.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-iraq-mosul-un-idUSKBN12W3PV

These ISIS bastards have been doing this for years now -- in both Syria and Iraq -- using innocent civilians as human shields.

China and Malaysia sign deals on navy vessels

Source: Reuters

Malaysia has agreed to buy four Chinese naval vessels and pledged with Beijing to handle South China Sea disputes bilaterally, a Chinese official said on Tuesday, in what could be China's latest counter to U.S. influence in the region.

The vessels are known as littoral mission ships, small craft that operate close to shore. Two will be built in China and two in Malaysia, Malaysian state media reported after a meeting between Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and his visiting counterpart Prime Minister Najib Razak.

Last week, Malaysia's defense ministry said in a posting on social media that the country would sign a contract to purchase patrol vessels from China during Najib's week-long visit that began on Sunday, but the post was later removed. The move marks Malaysia's first significant defense deal with China at a time of rising tension in the South China Sea.

"Leaders of the two sides agreed to further advance the proper settlement of the South China Sea issue with dialogue through a bilateral channel," Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin told reporters at Beijing's Great Hall of the People where Li and Najib met.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-malaysia-idUSKBN12W3WF

Nice to see that Malaysia and China are agreeing to work for a peaceful resolution of their conflicting territorial claims in the South China Sea.

I bet arms manufacturers are just a little bit miffed.

Give peace a chance.

Colonial says main gasoline line could open by Saturday

Source: Reuters

Colonial Pipeline Co's main gasoline line, a crucial supply source for the U.S. East Coast, will be shut for at least several days, the company said on Tuesday, after an explosion and fire in Alabama killed one worker and injured five others.

Shippers using the East Coast supply artery were bracing for a longer shutdown as Colonial said it was hard to predict a repair schedule. The shutdown will restrict gasoline supplies to millions of Americans in the U.S. Southeast and possibly the Northeast. The Northeast could be less affected since it can get supplies via waterborne shippers.

Colonial [COLPI.UL] said its main gasoline line could be open as early as Saturday. Crews have isolated the fire, which came weeks after its biggest gasoline spill in nearly two decades shut the same line for 12 days, it said.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-pipeline-blast-alabama-idUSKBN12V2FC

Wall St rattled by U.S. election, rate uncertainty

Source: Reuters

Wall Street sold off sharply on Tuesday, with the S&P 500 touching a nearly four-month low, amid growing concern over the impending U.S. presidential election and prospects for higher U.S. interest rates.

The CBOE Volatility Index .VIX, a gauge of near-term investor anxiety, jumped to almost a two-month high.

The tumultuous presidential race between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump has appeared to tighten in the past week after news that the FBI was investigating more emails as part of a probe into Clinton's use of a private email system.

"There is some anticipation that the markets have built in a Hillary victory, and that a Trump victory is going to roil the markets," said Paul Nolte, portfolio manager at Kingsview Asset Management in Chicago. "And that's why we're seeing the market sell off here, because some of the poll numbers have tightened up over the last week."

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-stocks-idUSKBN12W3UW

Good Lord... there is no way in hell that there is going to be a tRump victory. Period.

Get out the Vote. Please vote, take a friend to vote too.

Clinton slips below Trump in enthusiasm, but has slight edge in early voting, latest election poll s

Source: South China Morning Post (Hong Kong)

Clinton slips below Trump in enthusiasm, but has slight edge in early voting, latest election poll shows

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are all but tied in the latest Washington Post-ABC News Tracking Poll, which finds Clinton backers slipping behind in enthusiasm even as the Democrat has an edge in early voting.

The tracking poll finds little shift in Clinton’s overall support following news of the FBI’s renewed look at Clinton emails, but strong enthusiasm among her supporters fell behind Trump in combined Saturday and Sunday interviews. By 53 to 43 per cent, more Trump supporters say they are “very enthusiastic” about him, compared with Thursday and Friday when Trump’s edge was negligible (53 per cent vs. 51 per cent).

Voter enthusiasm has been in short supply for both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump through the fall campaign and continues to lag excitement about candidates on the ballot four years ago. At this point in 2012, 64 per cent of Obama supporters said they were “very enthusiastic” about him; Romney was only narrowly behind at 61 per cent.

Read more: http://www.scmp.com/news/world/united-states-canada/article/2042032/clinton-slips-below-trump-enthusiasm-has-slight-edge

Screw that. I am enthusiastic for Hillary, and I'm doing something with that enthusiasm.

I'm volunteering to drive people to the polls, and my state is pretty much strong for Hillary, I want the popular vote margin against tRump to be YUGE.

GOTV -- Getting out the vote is critical to winning next week. Please, vote, make sure your friends vote.

Get out the vote!

CNN Chief Jeff Zucker Rips Donna Brazile’s ‘Disgusting’ Dealings With Clinton Campaign

Source: Huffington Post

NEW YORK ― CNN president Jeff Zucker described former network commentator Donna Brazile’s interactions with the Clinton campaign as “unethical” and “disgusting” during a Tuesday editorial meeting, according to a source with knowledge of the matter.

Zucker’s remarks followed reports Monday that Brazile informed Hillary Clinton’s campaign in March about a question they could expect at a Democratic primary debate the following night against Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. This was the second time last month that hacked emails published by Wikileaks appeared to show Brazile tipping off the Clinton campaign with a possible CNN debate or town hall question.

Brazile, a longtime Democratic strategist and TV pundit, served as vice chair of the Democratic National Committee through much of the 2016 election. In July, she became interim DNC chair after Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) resigned because emails published by Wikileaks showed party officials supporting Clinton’s candidacy even though the organization was supposed to remain neutral during the primary. CNN suspended Brazile’s contract at the time, but it was expected she’d return to the network after the permanent selection of a DNC chair following the election.

But WikiLeaks published an email on Oct. 11 in which Brazile appeared to send the Clinton campaign a question on the death penalty ahead of a March town hall event. “From time to time I get the questions in advance,” she wrote to campaign communications director Jennifer Palmieri. The email is one of thousands leaked from the account of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta. The Clinton campaign has accused Russian hackers of targeting Podesta, though has not authenticated the documents being published by Wikileaks.

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/cnn-donna-brazile-jeff-zucker_us_58189c8de4b064e1b4b4ba02

Did she actually do this?!?

Were Donna Brazile’s interactions with the Clinton campaign “unethical” and “disgusting” as Jeff Zucker is claiming? He's A CNN president for god's sake!

Please tell me that Donna did not actually tip off Hillary or her people about debate questions. This just can't be true.

Latest from OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) to Ukraine, based on information received as of 19

Source: OSCE

In Donetsk region the SMM recorded fewer ceasefire violations[1] than during the previous day.

The SMM camera in Shyrokyne (20km east of Mariupol) recorded 56 undetermined explosions at an unknown distance to the north-east on the night of 7 August.

Whilst in government-controlled Svitlodarsk (57km north-east of Donetsk), on the night of 7 August, the SMM heard 38 explosions assessed as impacts of rounds from undetermined weapons 4-7km south-east of its position.

While in “DPR”-controlled Horlivka, the SMM heard 12 undetermined explosions 10-12km north-north-west of its position on the evening of 7 August.

On 8 August, positioned at the “DPR”-controlled Donetsk central railway station (6km north-west of the city centre), the SMM heard 20 explosions assessed as artillery rounds: 11 assessed as outgoing artillery rounds 2-4km north-west, seven assessed as impacts of 152mm artillery rounds and two as airbursts of 152mm artillery rounds 2.5-3.5km north-east.

Read more: http://www.osce.org/ukraine-smm/258361

"The OSCE has a comprehensive approach to security that encompasses politico-military, economic and environmental, and human aspects. It therefore addresses a wide range of security-related concerns, including arms control, confidence- and security-building measures, human rights, national minorities, democratization, policing strategies, counter-terrorism and economic and environmental activities. All 57 participating States enjoy equal status, and decisions are taken by consensus on a politically, but not legally binding basis."

As usual, the actual events are more numerous and carried out by both sides of the conflict than reported in the press. Unfiltered reports are available daily from the OSCE for the conflict in the eastern Ukraine.
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