Chicago, Illinois – One of the more troubling aspects of the Homan Square interrogation facility is the death of John Hubbard who is said to have died of an accidental heroin overdose while in police custody after buying drugs from an undercover officer.
Prior to the other revelations about Homan Square, it would have just been assumed that the cops were incompetent and let the suspect shoot up the evidence. Then it would have been assumed that they were lazy when parts of the file missing. After the explosive revelations about the facility, the public has to wonder how a suspect was capable of shooting up while inside of a police facility. It is highly unlikely that a suspect on the verge of overdose would be out attempting to purchase narcotics. The only likely scenario is that he injected, or someone else injected him with, the narcotics inside the police facility.
In light of the situation, The Fifth Column began reaching out to other victims of Homan Square. One of those was Jose Gonzales. During our interview he relayed his story:
It began the way most of the incidents involving Homan Square do. A no-knock raid sent police storming into his house. They wore no uniforms and arrived in an unmarked minivan. They said they had a warrant, but wouldn’t let him see it. His pregnant cousin was pushed to the ground, his grandmother and the kids in the house had automatic weapons shoved in their faces, and Jose was taken away. They searched the home and found no drugs.
He was placed in an interview room inside of Homan Square where there was red stuff on the floor that he believes was blood. The police began asking him questions about narcotics deals. Jose couldn’t answer the questions not just because he wasn’t really involved in drugs, but because the Jose Gonzales the cops were looking for was born in the 1960s. Jose is currently 27. The police weren’t happy with Jose’s constant denials and statements that he didn’t know anything. He repeatedly requested a lawyer, but he was never allowed one. That’s when they told the handcuffed and shackled Jose that they were going to inject him with heroin to make him talk. … Full article
South Kohala, HI — Hawaii police officer, Jody Buddemeyer, 30, has been arrested on suspicion of negligent homicide for an alleged hit and run.
A 63-year-old Michigan man, Jeffrey C. Sunow, was killed Sunday after being struck by Buddemeyer, who was on-duty at the time of the crash.
Sunow was found lying face down next to his severely damaged bike on the shoulder of Waikolo Road by responding fire department personnel at 6:30 am.
The Hawaii County Fire Department described the incident in a prepared statement Sunday morning, as a hit and run. … Full article
A video posted on Facebook Monday by a right-wing Israeli politician, then quickly removed, showed graphic evidence of what Palestinians have reported to be a common Israeli military practice: using dogs to attack unarmed civilians, including children.
In the video leaked by Michael Ben-Ari on his Facebook page, two Israeli soldiers are holding onto a 16-year old boy, and forcing a dog to bite the child while commanding the dog ‘Bite him!’ and saying to the boy, ‘Who’s the coward now?’ in Hebrew. … Full article with videos
BEERSHEBA – Israeli police on Tuesday destroyed thousands of acres of wheat, barley and other cereal crops in the Palestinian Bedouin village of Rakhama, locals told Ma’an.
Ali Freijat, a local resident, said that 14 tractors escorted by over 50 Israeli police vehicles arrived early Tuesday and began leveling the land.
“This is vandalism through which they plan to displace the Bedouins from the Negev so as to create a Jewish state free of Arabs. However, my message to them is that if you turn over the land a million times, and if you demolish our homes a thousand times we will continue to live on this land and won’t allow anybody to take it from us.”
The land that was leveled was granted by the Israeli state to compensate the loss of land resulting from forced displacement in 1954, Freijat said. … Full article
By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • March 3, 2015
The New York Times is reporting that most Republican voters as well as quite a few Democrats are leaning in favor of American soldiers intervening directly in Syria and Iraq. Republican politicians are paying attention, sounding more bellicose than ever, demanding “boots on the ground” and even suggesting that a John Bolton presidential run is a real possibility.
Apparently the widely noted war fatigue resulting from all the unsuccessful military engagements after 9/11 has worn off. ISIS and Russia are, of course the enemies du jour, but there is also a frequently expressed hankering to go after the Mullahs in Iran if they don’t completely cede their sovereignty tout suite. And there is always the “Red Menace” from China if all else fails. So many enemies, so little time to defeat them all.
How did all this come about as the United States has almost no actual interests compelling getting involved in the Middle East or Eastern Europe yet again? It is not as if a new foray into realms that we Yanks know little or nothing about is likely to be any more successful than the last couple of misadventures. To be sure, a series of sickening atrocities by ISIS has gotten the juices flowing, but the White House’s desire to obtain blanket authority to initiate and deepen an open ended conflict that presumably will go on forever is just about as poorly defined and prone to failure as was the Bushite global war on terror that it replaces. … continue
RT | March 3, 2015
There is no contact between the Russian and US parliaments as the Congress has repeatedly ignored all initiatives of negotiators aimed at settling various international crises, a senior Russian MP stated in an interview.
“Currently there are no contacts whatsoever between the State Duma and the US Congress, but this is not our fault,” head of the State Duma Committee for International Relations Aleksey Pushkov told Izvestia daily.
He noted that it all started in 2013 when leaders of the State Duma proposed sending a delegation of MPs to Congress in order to discuss the crisis in Syria and possible ways to overcome it. At first, the US lawmakers agreed to this, but then replied with a refusal, Pushkov said.
Pushkov added that he personally had sent a message to his US colleagues via former US ambassador to Moscow, Michael McFaul, asking for a meeting on neutral ground, such as Vienna or Geneva, but received no answer at all. … continue
By Robert Parry | Consortium News | March 2, 2015
The United States and Russia still maintain vast nuclear arsenals of mutual assured destruction, putting the future of humanity in jeopardy every instant. But an unnerving nonchalance has settled over the American side which has become so casual about the risk of cataclysmic war that the West’s propaganda and passions now ignore Russian fears and sensitivities.
A swaggering goofiness has come to dominate how the United States reacts to Russia, with American politicians and journalists dashing off tweets and op-eds, rushing to judgment about the perfidy of Moscow’s leaders, blaming them for almost anything and everything.
These days, playing with nuclear fire is seen as a sign of seriousness and courage. Anyone who urges caution and suggests there might be two sides to the U.S.-Russia story is dismissed as a wimp or a stooge. A what-me-worry “group think” has taken hold across the U.S. ideological spectrum. Fretting about nuclear annihilation is so 1960s.
So, immediately after last Friday night’s murder of Russian opposition figure Boris Nemtsov, the West’s media began insinuating that Russian President Vladimir Putin was somehow responsible even though there was no evidence or logic connecting him to the shooting, just 100 meters from the Kremlin, probably the last place Russian authorities would pick for a hit.
But that didn’t stop the mainstream U.S. news media from casting blame on Putin. … continue
RT | March 3, 2015
The number of “nuclear safety events” at Britain’s submarine base and warhead depot at the Clyde has drastically soared according to official records that showed 105 incidents in 2013-2014, compared to just 68 in the previous period.
Almost all of the incidents involved the reactors on Trident and other nuclear subs at the Faslane Naval Base, while six involved nuclear weapons stored at Coulport armaments depot.
Ministers were forced to disclose the information after a question in parliament by Angus Robertson from the Scottish National Party (SNP) who leads the party’s parliamentary group in Westminster.
Only 45 of the latest incidents were level C events, meaning there was a “moderate potential for future release or exposure, or localized release within a designated radiological controlled area.” … continue
Egypt’s Administrative Court issued a ruling on Tuesday that effectively halts the March/April parliamentary election process, judicial sources said.
The state-run Al-Ahram news portal confirmed the Administrative Court’s ruling.
“The Administrative Court ruled … halting the execution of the measures taken by the High Election Committee based on the ruling of the Constitutional Court,” a judicial source said, citing the ruling.
The Supreme Constitutional Court on Sunday found part of an election law that has to do with defining voting districts unconstitutional.
It was not immediately clear how long the process would be pushed back. The first phase of the election was due to start on March 22.
The election is the final step in a political road map that the army announced in July 2013.
Egypt has been without a parliament since June 2012, when a court dissolved the democratically elected main chamber, reversing a major accomplishment of the 2011 uprising that toppled autocrat Hosni Mubarak.
Egyptian new leaders say the election shows their commitment to democracy but critics say President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who as army chief toppled former President Mohammed Mursi, has undermined freedoms gained after the uprising that ended Mubarak’s 30-year rule.
In November, Sisi said that Egypt’s parliamentary elections would be held before the end of March 2015.
In the absence of parliament, Sisi has wielded legislative authority to introduce economic reforms that have impressed investors, while also curtailing political freedoms. … Full article
Cairo – An audio recording of senior military officials in Egypt appeared to indicate that their rise to power in July 2013 was partly bankrolled by the United Arab Emirates.
The leaked tape, apparently recorded last year in the office of now-president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, includes a discussion about funds that the Gulf kingdom donated to a grassroots campaign fomenting protests against former president Mohamed Morsi. … Full article
By Oleg Tyshkevich | Vesti | March 2, 2015
The coal miners of Western Ukraine who threatened a large-scale rebellion due to the three- month delay of salaries are being inducted into the army.
800 rebellious miners received notices directly from military commissars who delivered them to the coal mines.
According to the deputy mayor of Novovolynsk, Eduard Savik, the notices were delivered to coal mines no. 1 and no. 9 in Novovolynsk, which the state is planning to close. That’s where the majority of rebellious miners is employed.
The miners blocked highways several times this winter to protest government policies which does not finance the mines, but instead wants to close them and is not even paying coal miners’ salaries.
Several hundred miners are planning to stage a protest in Kiev on March 3 to force the government to pay them. … Full article
US Secretary of State John Kerry has offered a staunch defense of Israel at the annual session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva.
Addressing the session on Monday, the top US diplomat urged UN members to end what he described as a “biased” focus on Israel.
“The HCR’s obsession with Israel risks undermining the credibility of the entire organization,” Kerry said at the opening of the council.
“We will oppose any group within the UN system (attempting) to regularly and arbitrarily de-legitimise Israel,” he added.
Kerry said the HCR’s record on Israel was “deeply concerning.”
The UN body has frequently criticized Israel over its disregard for human rights. A new report commissioned by the council on Israel’s latest aggression on the Gaza Strip is set to be released later this month. … Full article
Defense attorney David Bruck today told a federal court that what authorities have described as a central piece of the prosecution’s evidence against his client “does not exist.”
In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings, public officials including the former Special Agent in Charge of the Boston FBI office Richard DesLauriers and the former governor of the state of Massachusetts told the public about a “chilling” video that all but proved the young Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s guilt. Speaking on NBC’s Face the Nation, Governor Deval Patrick said the video shows Tsarnaev placing a backpack down and walking away, just before it explodes.
“It does seem to be pretty clear that this suspect took the backpack off, put it down, did not react when the first explosion went off, and then moved away from the backpack in time for the second explosion,” the two-term Massachusetts governor said. “It’s pretty clear about his involvement and pretty chilling, frankly.”
Later Governor Patrick disclosed that he had not seen the video.
During jury selection in the Tsarnaev case, a potential juror told Judge O’Toole that she thought she could be fair and impartial, even though she couldn’t get the image of Tsarnaev putting the bomb down out of her head. “The image of him putting the backpack behind that little boy…I do have this image in my mind that I can’t deny, to be perfectly honest,” she told the court, describing what authorities have said is a video showing Tsarnaev leaving the backpack at the scene.
In a February federal appeals court hearing on a defense motion to move the trial out of Boston, both a federal judge and a DOJ prosecutor referenced the public airing of the video showing Tsarnaev placing the backpack on the ground.
The video has never been aired publicly.
Now Tsarnaev’s defense team has said in open court that it doesn’t exist.
By Matt Peppe | Just The Facts | March 1, 2015
In recent weeks the Ebola epidemic in West Africa has slowed from a peak of more than 1,000 new cases per week to 99 confirmed cases during the week of February 22, according to the World Health Organization. For two countries who have taken diametrically opposed approaches to combating the disease, the stark difference in the results achieved over the last five months has become evident.
The United States, which sent about 2,800 military troops to the region in October, has announced an end to its relief mission. Most soldiers have already returned. Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Admiral John Kirby declared the mission a “success.” The criteria for this determination is unclear, as the troops did not treat a single patient, much less save a single life.
President Barack Obama proclaimed the American response to the crisis “an example of American leadership.” In the case of Ebola, as is the case “whenever and wherever a disaster or disease strikes,” according to Obama, “the world looks to us to lead.” The President claimed that the troops contributed not only by their own efforts, but by serving as a “force multiplier” that increased the ability of others to contribute. Apparently the U.S. forces also have the effect of divine inspiration.
This is an example of “American values,” Obama declares, which “matter to the world.” The “American leadership” is one more example of “what makes us exceptional,” according to Obama, as is the case “whether it’s recession, or war, or terrorism.” … continue
Becomes Ministry of Truth
By Jon Rappoport | NoMoreFakeNews | March 1, 2015
“…if all records told the same tale — then the lie passed into history and became truth.” (1984, George Orwell)
The New Scientist has the stunning story (2/28/15, “Google wants to rank websites based on facts not links,” by Hal Hodson):
“THE internet is stuffed with garbage. Anti-vaccination websites make the front page of Google, and fact-free ‘news’ stories spread like wildfire. Google has devised a fix – rank websites according to their truthfulness.”
Great idea, right? … continue
By Gilbert Mercier | News Junky Post | February 26, 2015
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the United States has positioned itself, one administration after another, as a global supercop guarantor of world peace. Indeed, since the end of World War II, even as the US has projected its power worldwide through military might, its clever ideologues have managed to convince a large portion of their public opinion that their ambitions for global hegemony are altruistic and benevolent. This dichotomy between the fictional discourse and the brutal reality of US imperialism, applied globally since 1945, is more blatant than George Orwell’s worse fears expressed in 1984. In this war-is-peace construct, nothing is what it appears to be, and imperialist wars are sold to a gullible citizenry as being humanitarian. Despite the disinformation propagated by the think tanks and Western mainstream media outlets, factual evidence shows that currently, the clear-and-present dangers to world peace are not ISIS, “Russia‘s aggressive acts” or Ebola but, rather, the US military and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
The justification for the 2003 invasion of Iraq given by the spin masters of Orwellian imperialism was to “spread freedom and democracy to the Middle East”. Twelve years later, what has spread in Iraq, Libya and Syria is not freedom and democracy, but ashes, ruins, blood baths and despair. The new world order that the ideologues of Orwellian imperialism are striving to impose globally under the cover of fake revolutions, at least until everyone is beaten into submission, is actually controlled chaos. The destructive empire has several wrecking balls at its disposal, but its tools of choice are, in addition to the US military and the troops of its dependable and mostly occupied vassals in NATO, the Israel “Defense” Forces. The creation of controlled chaos works as a tactic to mold the collective psyche of the citizenry, because people usually strive for stability, security and order, even at the expense of their own personal liberty. The collective state of fear that chaos generates makes most people welcome the worst kinds of repression from the most oppressive forms of governments. Fear and paranoia are the essential ingredients of police states. … continue
Oriental Review | March 2, 2015
At this moment when Russia is being hit with a new propaganda attack over ‘political murder’ in Moscow it’s a good time to recall 12 notable US national political figures, all found murdered or suspiciously dead – Senators, Congressmen, Federal Prosecutors, Federal Judge, Governor, CIA Director – after questioning corruption or disturbing US oligarch leadership – since the 1963 JFK assassination. With 4 coup d’état ‘hits’ on the last 10 US Presidents themselves.
The list makes clear the ongoing menace of murder of any US prosecutor or national judge or politician who does not serve US ruling political families. Especially note the recent, media-hidden shooting murder of US Federal (national) Judge Roll after ruling against the US regime, along with the ‘suiciding’ deaths of two US Federal Prosecutors Ross and Colbert … ‘hits’ which keep even the US Supreme Court and all US prosecutors in terror and behaving submissively. … continue
The chairwoman of the BBC Trust is facing calls to sever ties with HSBC after it was revealed that she earns £10,000 a day from the scandal-ridden global banking giant.
Rona Fairhead, who was questioned by MPs from the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee on Monday, has worked for the bank in a variety of roles including as a non-executive director, earning hundreds of thousands of pounds in the process.
Last year she earned over £500,000 from HSBC – a figure which dwarfs her £110,000 salary from the BBC, for which she works a three-day week. … Full article
By Shamus Cooke | CounterPunch | March 2, 2015
When Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker compared labor unions to ISIS his audience cheered. At the end of the speech he got a standing ovation. His wealthy audience hated labor unions that much.
In fact, the 1% despises unions much more than they hate ISIS. Islamic extremists in the Syrian desert pose no threat to anyone in the U.S., while labor unions pose a direct threat to the profits of the super rich.
Conversely, the average U.S. worker has much more to fear from Scott Walker than any knife-wielding Jihadist. For example, Scott Walker is subtly campaigning for president among the elite by bragging about his successful butchering of Wisconsin unions, a model that he and his supporters hope to spread nationally.
Walker is idolized by the super rich for having dismembered Wisconsin unions in a way that recalls Ronald Reagan’s smashing of the PATCO air traffic controllers strike in 1981. The rich view Walker as a Reagan-like messiah who will transform labor relations yet again, giving corporations still more power in relation to the U.S. workforce.
For example, Walker’s anti-union laws have reduced union membership in Wisconsin by 50 percent since he defeated the “Wisconsin Uprising” in 2011, a battle victory that the super rich consider more heroic than the campaigns of any current military general. … continue
By Sue Udry | Dissent News Wire | February 27, 2015
ISIS is winning the Internet! Conventional wisdom has it that the terrorist group is brilliant at using social media to spread its message and recruit adherents. That troubles lawmakers and national security officials. Social media is a “free form of communication that you can use to plot and plan. A new way to propagandize and reach individuals… in their home,” John Carlin, assistant attorney general for national security told a cybersecurity conference last Monday, Feb. 23.
At a House terrorism subcommittee hearing last month, members wrestled with the problem of countering ISIS propaganda on social media without infringing on First Amendment rights. Representative Ted Poe (R-Texas), who chairs the committee, asked why the Department of Justice couldn’t use material support laws (which prohibit giving assistance to terrorist groups) to go after Twitter and other social-media sites that allow terrorist groups to use their services.
No one could give Poe a firm answer at the hearing, but Carlin waded into the fray on Monday while answering questions at the cybersecurity conference. He indicated that the Department of Justice could use material-support laws to go after those who spread ISIS propaganda on social media. “We have and will charge under our criminal-justice system,” he said. … continue
At least six people have been killed and three others injured in a US drone strike in Yemen’s southern Shabwa Province.
The strike comes two days after a similar US drone attack targeted Shabwa’s Bihan region, killing three people.
Washington has continued its so-called fight against militancy in Yemen in recent weeks, despite the country’s current political crisis. … Full article
RT | March 2, 2015
A US Department of Justice report, to be released this week, alleges that Ferguson police are guilty of disproportional fining and arresting African-American residents to balance the town’s budget, making the lives of those unable to pay a nightmare.
Officials familiar with the report told The New York Times that it will be “highly critical” of police practices in the town, where the majority of the population is black but the police department and local government are mostly white.
Traffic fines are the town’s second largest source of income, after sales tax. The DoJ report says that financial incentives are driving law enforcement to continue unfair policies, predominantly targeting African-Americans.
In 2013, African-Americans accounted for 86 percent of traffic stops, while making up 63 percent of Ferguson’s population.
For those too poor to pay their tickets, routine traffic stops in Ferguson could end up in repeated imprisonment due to mounting fines. … continue
Attorneys for Cleveland, Ohio allege in a new court filing that Tamir Rice, the 12-year-old boy fatally shot by local police last November, was responsible for his own death.
Responding to a wrongful death lawsuit filed on behalf of Rice’s family, lawyers for the city of Cleveland write that Rice’s death was “directly and proximately caused by [his] own acts.”
The response was filed on Friday by the city in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, barely a month after Rice family attorneys entered a 71-page complaint against Cleveland and the two police officers involved in the boy’s death late last year. … Full article
By Jay Syrmopoulos | The Free Thought Project | March 1, 2015
Los Angeles, Calif. – In a brutal display, Los Angeles police shot and killed a homeless man in front of Union Rescue Mission today, after he scuffled with officers.
A video of the event, posted on Facebook, shows numerous officers fighting with the man and eventually wrestling him to the ground where he continues to struggle against the officers.
The footage shows officers violently attacking the man with blows and then throwing him to the ground as four officers attempt to subdue him as he continues to resist the officers’ aggression.
At this point in the video, an officer can be heard yelling, “Get off my gun. Get off my gun.”
While possible that the victim went for the officer’s weapon, it must be noted that one of the tactics utilized by police, as a means of conditioning witnesses, is to yell out phrases such as “stop resisting” even if the person is doing no such thing.
Similarly, saying that someone went for the officers weapon is an accepted justification to use deadly force, and has become the default justification in many encounters where officers have killed unarmed citizens. … continue
Five activists were arrested Sunday in the American capital for demonstrating outside the Washington Convention Center where the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), a well-known pro-Israeli lobby, was holding its annual policy conference.
Believed to be one of the largest pro-Israeli gatherings, the AIPAC policy conference kicked off on Sunday, and will last for three days.
A group of protesters mobilized by an anti-war group known as CODEPINK or Women for Peace on social media under the hashtag #ShutDownAIPAC tried to block the entrance to the convention center. Several civil society organizations, including Jewish ones, joined the demonstration.
Some protesters were waving flags of Hezbollah, a Lebanese resistance movement against Israel which is listed as a “terrorist organization” by the US.
Israel occupied parts of Lebanon for 22 years until 2000 and the two countries are still technically at war.
The latest Israeli war on Lebanon in the summer of 2006 killed more than 1,200 Lebanese, most of them civilians, and 160 Israelis, most of them soldiers.
“The purpose of the rally was to draw attention to this organization’s role as a special interest lobby that maintains a dangerous stranglehold over US policies and diverts US tax dollars from American needs and into Israeli militarism,” a statement by CODEPINK read.
The activists were violently removed by police from the front of the Washington Convention Center while chanting: “Netanyahu, War Criminal! Free, Free, Palestine!”
“We’re here to say that this organization is on the path of war,” one of the protest organizers, Medea Benjamin told Anadolu news agency. … Full article
On Sunday Israeli Border Police arrested two Christian Peacemaker Team members while they were walking Palestinian children from kindergarten just after noon. The CPTers were taken to the police station near the Ibrahimi Mosque, then moved to a police station in the Givat Havot settlement, and finally released at 5:20 p.m. Israeli police did not press formal charges.
For several weeks, members of CPT Palestine have accompanied children from the Al Saraya Kindergarten, who face harassment from Israeli Border Police, Israeli soldiers, and settlers during their walk to and from school every day. Part of their walk to school is on a road that the Israeli military has declared partially off-limits to Palestinians, including young children. Since CPT began accompanying the kindergarten students, border police have stopped the children several times and told them that they may not walk on the street for security reasons, but have allowed them to pass on other occasions.
Yesterday afternoon, border police stopped two CPTers and checked their IDs as they were walking up the closed road, but allowed them to continue up to the kindergarten. When the CPTers returned with some of the kindergarten students, the border police stopped them again and asked for their IDs. CPTers handed over their IDs and once the soldiers returned them, they proceeded down the Palestinian path. The border police then radioed down to the two border police officers at the bottom of the road and ordered the CPTers’ detention. After two hours, border police then took the CPTers to the nearby police station. … Full article
Two Palestinians were shot and injured by Zionist occupation forces on Sunday during clashes in Dheisheh refugee camp, near the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem, eyewitnesses said.
According to the witnesses, a Zionist force stormed the camp and raided several house before detaining a Palestinian man at his residence.
The occupation army used live ammunition, rubber bullets and teargas to disperse stone-throwing Palestinians angered by the detention. … Full article
GAZA CITY – Israeli naval boats on Monday opened fire at fishermen off the coast of northern Gaza, residents said.
The incident occurred near the neighborhood of al-Sudaniyya, with the fishermen returning to shore for fear of arrest or having their vessels confiscated. … Full article
According to a report by Hussam Association of Palestinian Prisoners and Ex-Prisoners, Israeli occupation forces have kidnapped some 285 Palestinians, 30 of whom are children under the age of 18, during February 2015 alone. […]
Hebron ranked first regarding the number of youth kidnapped, with the number of 72 , followed by Jerusalem, 56, and Ramallah 32.
In Nablus the number reached 30, in Jenin 27, in Bethlehem 22, 9 in Qalqilya, 7 in Tulkarem, 6 in Jericho, 6 in Tubas and 3 in Salfit.
In the Gaza Strip, 15 people were kidnapped; 9 of the abductions took place near the border siege of Gaza, against merchants and patients who were being transferred through the Erez crossing checkpoint, in addition to 3 fishermen who were arrested while on their boats in the sea, and were released after. … Full article
See also: 3755 Children Kidnapped In Past Four Years, 1266 in 2014 Alone
What’s really terrifying about this threat
By John Chuckman | Aletho News | March 1, 2015
ISIS certainly is not what a great many people think that it is, if you judge what they think by what our corporate press proclaims incessantly.
Judging by what ISIS actually does and whom its acts benefit, its clandestine associates, and the testimony of some witnesses, ISIS is a complex intelligence operation. Its complexity reflects at least in part the fact that it serves the interests of several countries and that it has more than one objective. Its complexity reflects also the large effort to reinforce a false image with disinformation and staged events such as a video of a beheading which could not have been a beheading unless they’ve discovered a bloodless method until now unknown to science. … continue
Nick Bernabe | ANTIMEDIA | February 28, 2015
Chicago, IL — As the nation continues to react to the newly discovered ‘black site’ operated by Chicago Police, the mainstream media continues to bury it’s head in the sand.
National media outlets like Fox, MSNBC, and CNN are unsurprisingly refusing to touch this story, driving even further suspicion that the corporate media has become nothing more than a mouthpiece for big government and corporate America.
As we reported earlier this week, local corporate media was literally running stories about Homan Square that were direct copies from CPD’s public relations statements.
According to interviews conducted by The Atlantic, local mainstream reporters often agree with these disappear and torture tactics, so they refuse to do their jobs at uncovering what is going on there;
“I think that many crime reporters in Chicago have political views that are right in line with the police,” Tracy Siska said. “They tend to agree about the tactics needed by the police. They tend to have by one extent or the other the same racist views of the police — a lot of urban police (not all of them by any stretch, but a lot of them) embody racism.”
Meanwhile, a campaign we launched to shed light on Homan Square, #Gitmo2Chicago, trended nationwide last night on Twitter and today on Facebook — showing that the public at large is generally disgusted by these CIA-style tactics.
So while the corporate media posts 3 million stories about the color of a dress, the country is questioning the police state in a big way.
As I write this, a large protest is taking place in Chicago at Homan Square to shut it down, with more protests being planned across the country in the coming weeks.
But keep in mind, the Revolution will not be televised on Cable TV, but it will be on the internet. Watch live video from the protests here.
Google is looking at rolling out yet another revision to their search engine algorithm by curtailing your results to sites it considers to be the most “trustworthiness.”
New Scientist Explains:
Google’s search engine currently uses the number of incoming links to a web page as a proxy for quality, determining where it appears in search results. So pages that many other sites link to are ranked higher. This system has brought us the search engine as we know it today, but the downside is that websites full of misinformation can rise up the rankings, if enough people link to them.
A Google research team is adapting that model to measure the trustworthiness of a page, rather than its reputation across the web. Instead of counting incoming links, the system – which is not yet live – counts the number of incorrect facts within a page. “A source that has few false facts is considered to be trustworthy,” says the team (arxiv.org/abs/1502.03519v1). The score they compute for each page is its Knowledge-Based Trust score. […]
The software works by tapping into the Knowledge Vault, the vast store of facts that Google has pulled off the internet. … more
The United States responded positively to Cuba’s call to be taken off from the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism, a condition put forward by Havana before embassies could be opened in their respective capitals.
Roberta Jacobson, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, said on Friday during a press conference that her country is reviewing the terror list and will remove Cuba from it before April to pave the way for better ties between both nations.
“We are going to do that as quickly as we can in accordance with the requirements of the law, but we see that and the establishment of diplomatic relations as separate processes,” Jacobson said.
The Cuban government has insisted that diplomatic relations cannot exist while one country has the other one on a list of sponsors of terrorism. … Full article
RT | March 1, 2015
Uruguay’s president, Jose “Pepe” Mujica, a former guerrilla who lives on a farm and gives most of his salary to charity, is stepping down after five years in office, ending his term as one of the world’s most popular leaders ever.
Mujica, 79, is leaving office with a 65 percent approval rating. He is constitutionally prohibited from serving consecutive terms.
“I became president filled with idealism, but then reality hit,” Mujica said in an interview with a local newspaper earlier this week, according to AFP.
Some call him “the world’s poorest president.” Others the “president every other country would like to have.” But Mujica says “there’s still so much to do” and hopes that the next government, led by Tabare Vazquez (who was elected president for a second time last November) will be “better than mine and will have greater success.”
Mujica said he succeeded in putting Uruguay on the world map. He managed to turn the cattle-ranching country, home to 3.4 million people, into an energy-exporting nation, Brazil being Uruguay’s top export market (followed by China, Argentina, Venezuela and the US.)
Uruguay’s $55 billion economy has grown an average 5.7 percent annually since 2005, according to the World Bank. Uruguay has maintained its decreasing trend in public debt-to-GDP ratio – from 100 percent in 2003 to 60 percent by 2014. It has also managed to decrease the cost of its debt, and reduce dollarization – from 80 percent in 2002 to 50 percent in 2014.
“We’ve had positive years for equality. Ten years ago, about 39 percent of Uruguayans lived below the poverty line; we’ve brought that down to under 11 percent and we’ve reduced extreme poverty from 5 percent to only 0.5 percent,” Mujica told the Guardian in November. … continue
A decade-old movement for boycotting Israeli goods in the United States is gaining momentum at American universities, a report says.
An increasing number of American students are now joining the Boycott-Divestment-Sanction movement … with student governments at some universities taking divestment votes, the Associated Press reported on Saturday.
Student governments at five of the 10 University of California campuses have voted for divestment with two more doing the same which include Santa Cruz and Davis.
In addition, divestment has gained, since December, the support of the labor union UAW2865 which represents thousands of teaching assistants and workers for the entire UC as well as the UC Students Association representing student government bodies statewide. … Full article
KHAN YOUNIS – Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) opened machinegun fire at agricultural lands to the east of Khan Younis in southern Gaza Strip on Sunday morning.
Local sources told the PIC reporter that the IOF soldiers based on the borderline of the Israeli security fence fired machineguns at Palestinian farmers and bird hunters with no casualties reported.
Israeli indiscriminate fire and limited incursions into Gaza Strip breach the ceasefire agreement signed with Egyptian mediation late August.
RT | March 1, 2015
Israel reportedly bypassed the White House and asked the US Congress for an extra $317 million to be added to President Barack Obama’s budget for the next fiscal year in order to fund Israeli missile defense programs, Bloomberg reported. […]
The new allocation will allegedly finance the ‘David’s Sling’ and ‘Arrow-3′ programs – designed to intercept medium- to long-range missiles – as well as provide an anti-ballistic missile system.
According to Bloomberg’s report on Friday, the director of Israel’s missile defense organization Yair Ramati “visited lawmakers and aides to the congressional defense committees on February 2 and 3 to outline the case for more money and thank them for past assistance.” … continue
RT | February 28, 2015
A study by the International Monetary Fund tracked three decades of income and found that as unionization declined, the wealth of the richest 10 percent in advanced countries showed a continuous increase.
More specifically, the study’s authors found that when researching income levels during the period of 1980-2010, the decline in unionization explained about half of the rise in incomes for the richest 10 percent, and half of the increase in the Gini coefficient (a measure of income inequality).
“While some inequality can increase efficiency by strengthening incentives to work and invest, recent research suggests that higher inequality is associated with lower and less sustainable growth in the medium run, even in advanced economies,” argued the paper’s authors, Florence Jaumotte and Carolina Osorio Buitron.
The authors said traditional research has argued that the rise of inequality in advanced economies can be attributed to skill-based technology changes – such as new technology displacing workers – and globalization. They found that these developments led to some inequality changes at different rates and magnitudes, but not enough to account for the consistent increase in inequality that was being measured.
Researchers looked for answers in recent studies that made the claim that financial deregulation and lower taxes were another factor – but again, that wasn’t showing the steady increases that researchers were charting.
“… A rising concentration of income at the top of the distribution can reduce a population’s welfare if it allows top earners to manipulate the economic political system in their favor,” they wrote, referring to things such as lower taxes and business subsidies. … continue
By Nick Alexandrov | CounterPunch | February 27, 2105
Commentators marked World War I’s centenary last year with cloudy references to its “dreadful lessons” and “emotional legacies.” And the victor countries’ leaders stressed the “profound sacrifice” (Barack Obama) the conflict’s “generation…made for us” (David Cameron). But if these recollections are any guide, one of the war’s dark chapters has been largely forgotten.
George Bernard Shaw discussed this episode nearly a century ago, in July 1919. “We are at present at a climax of national exultation over the most magnificent military triumph in our long record of victory,” he observed. “But the splendour of the end,” he added, “had better not blind us to the grimness of the means, which were the work of our hands.” Shaw meant that England had “starved the children of Germany, and of many other lands as well.”
The starvation campaign’s centenary is next month. It was on March 1, 1915, that “Britain and France announced that they intended to expand the objectives of the naval blockade of the Central Powers to include the interdiction of food,” Alexander Downes writes in Targeting Civilians in War. This declaration followed Germany’s, on February 4, signaling the start of submarine warfare, but merely exploited the Kaiser’s pronouncement as “an excellent pretext to interdict German food imports in a way that avoided offending neutral opinion,” Downes explains.
Depicting the blockade as a response to German aggression deflected attention from British criminality. … continue
RT | February 28, 2015
The US is supplying Kiev with spy satellite imagery of enemy positions in eastern Ukraine, but does so by deliberately reducing the quality, apparently so as not to anger Russia too much, according to The Wall Street Journal.
A debate has been on in the US for some time on whether the Obama administration should provide the Kiev government with actionable intelligence. As with providing “defensive” weapons, the disagreements are similar.
However, imagery reduced in quality has apparently been green-lighted, but only arriving to the Ukrainians 24 hours late at the least. This step is apparently to ensure the US isn’t in any way thought of as a participant in the conflict, the newspaper said, referencing its own sources.
Another reason for why the images are somewhat degraded is in the event of the photos accidentally ending up with the Russians, who as a result would learn more about American spy satellite capabilities. … continue
By Richard Silverstein | Tikun Olam | February 28, 2015
Israel’s Shin Bet rearrested Golani Druze Sedki al-Maket (age 48). Until his release in 2012 (Hebrew), he’d been the longest serving Israeli security prisoner, having spent 27 years detained. News of his arrest is under gag order by Israeli media. The gag is laughable since the arrest has been reported not only by Syrian media, but in a Hebrew Facebook post.
Though Israeli security services haven’t offered any reason for his arrest, it’s likely they’re angered because a week ago he followed Syrian rebels to a meeting inside Israeli-occupied territory. The rebels met with Israeli forces who’ve previously been shown to receive logistical and intelligence support from Israel in previous reports here and in Israel and foreign media. Al Maket filmed a video while the meeting was underway, in which he described what he saw and offered it to Syrian TV. It was aired to the entire nation and likely monitored by Israeli security.
The Shin Bet doesn’t want any further leaks about such collaboration because it allows the Syrian regime to paint the rebels as Israeli stooges. It also gives the lie to those Israeli intelligence figures and journalists who’ve spoken falsely about Israel remaining neutral regarding the two sides fighting in Syria. Despite numerous air attacks against Syrian government facilities, assassinations of Syrian, Hezbollah and Iranian military, and security cooperation with rebels, Israel continues to maintain the fiction it hasn’t chosen sides. … continue
An autopsy result counters Denver police officers’ accounts of their fatal shooting of a 17-year-old American girl while she was driving a stolen car.
On January 26, Jessica Hernandez was shot three times by officers Daniel Greene and Gabriel Jordan who claimed the victim was driving the car toward them.
The officers found the girl and four other teenagers inside the car in an alley and asked the teens several times to get out of the vehicle. But they opened fire after Hernandez allegedly drove toward one of the officers.
According to the autopsy report released by the Denver medical examiner’s office on Friday, one bullet entered the left side of Jessica’s pelvis and traveled to her right tight.
The two other bullets entered through the left side of the victim’s chest and passed right through her body, which according to her family’s lawyer, suggests that Hernandez was shot from the driver’s side of the car.
“These facts undermine Denver Police Department’s claim that Jessie was driving at the officers as they shot her,” Mohamedbhai said in a statement. “The wound path and trajectory of the bullet that likely killed Jessica Hernandez undermines the version of events as indicated by the Denver Police Department.”
He said the “objective evidence” contradicts officers’ claims that “Jessie was to blame for her own death”. … Full article
By Prof Michel Chossudovsky | Global Research | February 28, 2015
The following email was sent to me by a Global Research reader, widow of an American serviceman, an unspoken victim of America’s wars.
Her response shows how effective war propaganda has become, in turning concepts up side down.
Western civilization is threatened, the ISIS bogeyman seeks World domination. Our American way of life is threatened.
She blames the enemy for the death of her husband, rather than the US government.
I offered to send her my book regarding the impacts of nuclear war. I signed my email with the words “For Peace”.
She responded by saying: ”How dare you think peace is the answer.”
War is the solution, she says. “total annihilation is the answer. .. What we have to do is to teach nations to fear us” … continue
February – 2015