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Military Resistance 11F12
Snowden Leaves Hong Kong:
“Wikileaks Has Assisted Mr. Snowden's Political Asylum In A Democratic Country, Travel Papers And Safe Exit From Hong Kong”
June 23, 2013 By TE-PING CHEN, Wall Street Journal The U.S. government had previously requested that Hong Kong surrender Mr. Snowden, who has been charged with theft of government property as well as unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communication of classified communications intelligence information.
Each crime carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison on conviction. However, Hong Kong's government has steadfastly refused to publicly comment on Mr. Snowden's case for days, until it announced Sunday that the former government contractor had left the city, where he had been holed up in hiding since May 20. On Sunday, Hong Kong's government additionally said that documents accompanying the U.S. government's request that Mr. Snowden be detained under a provisional warrant of arrest “did not fully comply with the legal requirements under Hong Kong law.” University of Hong Kong legal expert Simon Young said it was common for government lawyers to seek more information about surrender requests, a view that legislators echoed. Still, Mr. Young said it was likely that the U.S. government would nonetheless be “irate” with their Hong Kong counterparts for not doing more to hold Mr. Snowden as such back-and-forth with American authorities proceeded. Some Hong Kong lawmakers expressed mixed relief and disappointment on Sunday that Mr. Snowden had left the city as his presence had placed the city in a potential quandary over how to best handle his case, given its high-profile nature and pressure from both the U.S. and local activists calling for his protection. Legislator Alan Leong noted that Mr. Snowden's presence in Hong Kong threatened to embarrass China, as it would likely further intensify local debate over cyberspying by both the U.S. and China. “Handling it in this way really allows the two superpowers to avoid this kind of focus,” he said. “We've lost the opportunity for such a debate now.” “For Hong Kong, this was the best option,” said Regina Ip, the city's former security secretary and a current legislator. She also added that the city might not have had any other choice. “He hasn't committed any offense here, we had no reason not to allow him go,” she said, noting that he had entered the city on a valid tourist visa and was entitled to his own freedom of movement. The Hong Kong government said that as the city hadn't received sufficient information to process a provisional warrant of arrest, it had no legal basis on which to stop Mr. Snowden from leaving Hong Kong. It added that Mr. Snowden had left the city “through a lawful and normal channel,” and that it had already notified U.S. authorities of his departure. The antisecrecy group WikiLeaks said it was aiding Mr. Snowden. “WikiLeaks has assisted Mr. Snowden's political asylum in a democratic country, travel papers and safe exit from Hong Kong,” a message on the group's Twitter feed said Sunday. Another tweet said: “Mr. Snowden is currently over Russian airspace accompanied by WikiLeaks legal advisers.” The group repeated both tweets in Spanish. WikiLeaks representatives didn't immediately respond to requests for comment. Kristinn Hrafnsson, a WikiLeaks spokesman, confirmed that the tweets were accurate.
In a statement Sunday, WikiLeaks said Mr. Snowden was “bound for a democratic nation via a safe route for the purposes of asylum, and is being escorted by diplomats and legal advisors from WikiLeaks.” It added: “Mr Snowden requested that WikiLeaks use its legal expertise and experience to secure his safety. Once Mr Snowden arrives at his final destination his request will be formally processed.” In the statement, Baltasar Garzon, legal director of Wikileaks and lawyer for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, compared Mr. Snowden's situation to that of Mr. Assange, who has spent the last year living in the Ecuadoran Embassy in London in an effort to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning over allegations that he sexually assaulted two women. “The WikiLeaks legal team and I are interested in preserving Mr Snowden's rights and protecting him as a person. What is being done to Mr Snowden and to Mr Julian Assange—for making or facilitating disclosures in the public interest—is an assault against the people,” Mr. Garzon said in the statement, without elaborating. Mr. Snowden and WikiLeaks share some mutual contacts. One of the journalists to whom Mr. Snowden said he leaked many of his NSA documents — Glenn Greenwald, a columnist and reporter for the Guardian — has described himself as a strong supporter of WikiLeaks. Another of the journalists who helped write stories about Mr. Snowden's leaked documents in the Guardian and The Washington Post—Laura Poitras—has recently spent time interviewing WikiLeaks staffers for a documentary film about whistleblowers. In Twitter postings Sunday, Mr. Greenwald said: “The fact that a person flies to City X does not mean that is their intended ultimate destination.” He added: “I hope the media excitement over this White Bronco moment sustains and refocuses on what the U.S. government is doing in the dark.” WikiLeaks representatives in recent days have said they were attempting to help Mr. Snowden gain asylum in Iceland, which has strong legislation protecting whistleblowers. Iceland's government said that in order to apply for asylum, an applicant must be present in the country. During his time in Hong Kong, Mr. Snowden sparked a furor by leaking documents to the South China Morning Post that suggested the U.S. government had hacked numerous targets in Hong Kong and in mainland China. Over the weekend, the paper published further details about such hacking activities from Mr. Snowden, who said that China's major mobile phone providers and one of its leading universities, Tsinghua, were among the U.S.'s targets. Chinese media on Sunday in turn lambasted the U.S., with a commentary by the official Xinhua news agency saying “the United States, which has long been trying
to play innocent as a victim of cyberattacks, has turned out to be the biggest villain in our age.” Hong Kong's government said it has formally written the U.S. government requesting clarification about Mr. Snowden's allegations, and pledged to continue to follow up on the matter “so as to protect the legal rights of the people of Hong Kong.” The U.S. consulate in Hong Kong didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. Hong Kong Baptist University political analyst Michael DeGolyer said that Mr. Snowden's activities had undercut attempts by the U.S. to encourage China to take a harder stance against cyberspying. “They've been great to insulate China against what looks like proof they've stolen hundreds of billions of dollars worth of intellectual property from American firms,” he said. “Now it looks like China is the wronged party, instead of the wronging party.” In a brief statement late Sunday, China's Foreign Ministry said that officials “are seriously concerned about the recently disclosed cyber attacks against China conducted by relevant U.S. government agencies. This once again proves that China is a victim of cyber attacks. We have already made representations to the U.S. side on this matter.” The ministry reiterated China's call for talks with other governments about combating cyber attacks. “China opposes all forms of cyber attacks,” it said. Mr. Snowden has previously expressed interest in seeking refuge in Iceland, where his supporters have been lobbying the government to grant him citizenship or asylum. Iceland's Ministry of Interior reiterated Sunday that any individual must be present in the country in order to apply for asylum and must apply in his or her own name.
Snowden Arrives In Moscow
June 23, 2013 Alan Gomez and Zach Coleman, USA TODAY [Excerpts] An Aeroflot flight from Hong Kong believed to be carrying Snowden landed in Moscow. Russia's state ITAR-Tass news agency cited an unnamed Aeroflot airline official as saying Snowden was on Flight SU213, which landed on Sunday afternoon. The anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks also said that Snowden had landed in Moscow.
National Security Agency Discloses In Secret Capitol Hill
Briefing That Thousands Of Analysts Can Listen To Domestic Phone Calls:
That Authorization Appears To Extend To E-Mail And Text Messages Too;
“Nadler's Initial Statement Appears To Confirm Some Of The Allegations Made By Edward Snowden”
“The NSA Records The Phone Calls Of 500,000 To 1 Million People Who Are On Its So-Called Target List, And Perhaps Even More”
William Binney, a former NSA technical director who helped to modernize the agency's worldwide eavesdropping network, told the Daily Caller this week that the NSA records the phone calls of 500,000 to 1 million people who are on its socalled target list, and perhaps even more. June 15, 2013 by Declan McCullagh, CNET [Excerpts] The National Security Agency has acknowledged in a new classified briefing that it does not need court authorization to listen to domestic phone calls, a participant in the briefing said. Rep. Jerrold Nadler, a New York Democrat, disclosed on Thursday that during a secret briefing to members of Congress, he was told that the contents of a phone call could be accessed “simply based on an analyst deciding that.” If the NSA wants “to listen to the phone,” an analyst's decision is sufficient, without any other legal authorization required, Nadler said he learned. “I was rather startled,” said Nadler, an attorney and congressman who serves on the House Judiciary committee. Not only does this disclosure shed more light on how the NSA's formidable eavesdropping apparatus works domestically, it also suggests the Justice Department has secretly interpreted federal surveillance law to permit thousands of low-ranking analysts to eavesdrop on phone calls. Because the same legal standards that apply to phone calls also apply to e-mail messages, text messages, and instant messages, being able to listen to phone calls would mean the NSA analysts could also access the contents of Internet communications without going before a court and seeking approval. Nadler's initial statement appears to confirm some of the allegations made by Edward Snowden, a former NSA infrastructure analyst who leaked classified documents to the Guardian. Snowden said in a video interview that, while not all NSA analysts had this ability, he could from Hawaii “wiretap anyone from you or your accountant to a federal judge to even the president.” The NSA declined to comment to CNET. (This is unrelated to the disclosure that the NSA is currently collecting records of the metadata of all domestic Verizon calls, but not the actual contents of the conversations.) Director of National Intelligence James Clapper released a statement on Sunday saying: “The statement that a single analyst can eavesdrop on domestic communications without proper legal authorization is incorrect and was not briefed to Congress.” Clapper's statement did not elaborate, however, on what “proper” authorization would be.
Some reports have suggested that permission from a “shift supervisor” would also be required. The Washington Post disclosed Saturday that the existence of a top-secret NSA program called NUCLEON, which “intercepts telephone calls and routes the spoken words” to a database. Top intelligence officials in the Obama administration, the Post said, “have resolutely refused to offer an estimate of the number of Americans whose calls or e-mails have thus made their way into content databases such as -NUCLEON.” Earlier reports have indicated that the NSA has the ability to record nearly all domestic and international phone calls -- in case an analyst needed to access the recordings in the future. A Wired magazine article last year disclosed that the NSA has established “listening posts” that allow the agency to collect and sift through billions of phone calls through a massive new data center in Utah, “whether they originate within the country or overseas.” That includes not just metadata, but also the contents of the communications. William Binney, a former NSA technical director who helped to modernize the agency's worldwide eavesdropping network, told the Daily Caller this week that the NSA records the phone calls of 500,000 to 1 million people who are on its so-called target list, and perhaps even more. “They look through these phone numbers and they target those and that's what they record,” Binney said. Rep. Nadler's statement that NSA analysts can listen to calls without court orders came during a House Judiciary hearing on June 13 that included FBI director Robert Mueller as a witness. Mueller initially sought to downplay concerns about NSA surveillance by claiming that, to listen to a phone call, the government would need to seek “a special, a particularized order from the FISA court directed at that particular phone of that particular individual.” Is information about that procedure “classified in any way?” Nadler asked. “I don't think so,” Mueller replied. “Then I can say the following,” Nadler said. “We heard precisely the opposite at the briefing the other day. We heard precisely that you could get the specific information from that telephone simply based on an analyst deciding that...In other words, what you just said is incorrect. So there's a conflict.”
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the head of the Senate Intelligence committee, separately acknowledged that the agency's analysts have the ability to access the “content of a call.”
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AFGHANISTAN WAR REPORTS
Australian Solider Killed And Another 2 Wounded By Insurgents In Afghanistan
June 22 Associated Press CANBERRA, Australia — An Australian special forces soldier has been killed and two of his fellow troops were wounded in a gun battle with insurgents in southern Afghanistan. The soldier, whose name had not been released at the request of his family, was killed on Saturday on his fifth tour of Afghanistan. He was decorated member of the Sydney-based 2nd Commando Regiment who had also served in Iraq and East Timor, Australian Defense Force Chief Lt. Gen. David Hurley said on Sunday. He was the 40th Australian casualty of the campaign and the first since October. A seriously wounded Australian soldier was flown to Kandahar for surgery to a gunshot wound. An Australian airman was treated for minor wounds at the Australian base at Tarin Kowt, he said. The Australian troops were supporting an operation by the elite Afghan troops of the Uruzgan Provincial Response Company.
Dover Family Loses Son, A Casualty Of IED Attack In Afghanistan
Warrant Officer Sean W. Mullen was assigned to Company B, 2nd Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Fort Campbell, Ky. / ARMY PHOTO Jun. 4, 2013 by William H. McMichael, The News Journal The only son of a Dover family was killed in Afghanistan over the weekend, the Pentagon announced Tuesday. Army Special Forces Warrant Officer Sean W. Mullen, 39, died on Sunday in Lashkar Gah, in Helmand Province, of injuries sustained when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device, the Army said. No further details on the attack were available, according to Maj. Allison Aguilar of Army Special Operations Command. Mullen was the first service member either from the state or stationed here to be killed in the war theater since 2010, when Army Sgt. Andrew Creighton died in Oruzgan Province. Gov. Jack Markell ordered U.S. and state flags lowered to half-staff through Friday in Mullen’s honor. Mullen, a medic, was assigned to Company B, 2nd Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Fort Campbell, Ky., and served as an assistant detachment commander for a Special Forces A-team. He and his wife, Nancy, lived near the base in Adams, Tenn., according to his mother, Mariam Mullen, of Dover. “He was just loved so much,” she said. “Just a great kid. He was a great brother. He and his sister were very close. Just a great kid.” “He was an amazing person – beyond just being a soldier,” said his sister, Christina Eilers, of Dover.
Mariam Mullen said she received the news Sunday evening. She couldn’t put her reaction into words. “That’s something that I couldn’t describe,” she said. But she was happy to recall his formative years. Mullen, who was born in Allentown, Pa., but moved to Dover as a child, was a “pretty normal boy” growing up and was active in Scouting along with his father, Bill, she said. “He loved sports; he loved his friends,” she said. “He just loved baseball.” School was a lot less fun. Mullen attended Caesar Rodney High School in Camden, and his mother, a teacher, said with a chuckle, “He was not a lover of the classroom.” Her son did attend Delaware Technical Community College after graduation and considered a career in criminal justice. But in 1993, he joined the Maryland National Guard, and – “when he was too old for us to tell him no,” she said – he went full-time Army in 1995. An infantryman, he was stationed in North Carolina, South Korea and Georgia. He subsequently volunteered for and, in April 2007, completed Special Forces training. Mullen was assigned to 2nd Battalion’s Company A as a medical sergeant, promoted to senior medical sergeant and spent two years on a Special Forces team until he was selected as the company operations sergeant. After a deployment to the Iraq war, he was assigned as a team’s senior medic, according to Army Special Operations Command. Mullen was chosen to attend the Special Forces Warrant Officer Technical and Tactical Certification course, graduating as a warrant officer in 2012. “We went to the graduation and Sean hadn’t told us, but he had been chosen to receive the leadership award by his peers that were in the class,” Mariam Mullen said. It was named, she said, for another fallen Army warrant officer. Mullen was on his sixth deployment in support of an overseas contingency operation when he died, the Army said. He is survived by his wife, mother, father and sister.
POLITICIANS REFUSE TO HALT THE BLOODSHED THE TROOPS HAVE THE POWER TO STOP THE WAR
22 June 2013 TOLOnews According to Afghan security officials, two police officers were killed by Taliban insurgents in northern Kunduz province on Friday. “The attack took place in the capital of Kunduz, when a number of Taliban insurgents attacked a police checkpoint killing two police officers,” said Sarwar Hussaini, the provincial police spokesman. After attacking the checkpoint, the insurgents escaped outside the city, where a gun battle with Afghan security forces ensued and lasted until midnight. Although Taliban has not commented on the attack as of now, Afghan security forces identified the gunmen as being members of the insurgent group.
Statement Regarding Inauguration Of Political Office Of Islamic Emirate In Qatar
[Taliban Press Release]
[Via Uruknet] 18 June 2013 The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan STATEMENT REGARDING INAUGURATION OF POLITICAL OFFICE OF ISLAMIC EMIRATE IN QATAR Everyone is aware that the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan has been waging Jihad and working tirelessly to bring an end to the invasion of Afghanistan and establish in it an independent Islamic government and has always utilized every legitimate method to achieve this goal. The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan has both military as well as political objectives which are confined to Afghanistan.
The Islamic Emirate does not wish to harm other countries from its soil and neither will it allow others use Afghan soil to pose a threat to the security of other nations! The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan wants to have cordial relations on basis of mutual respect with all the countries of the world including its neighbors and desires security for its nation as well as security and justice on international level. Undoubtedly the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan considers it its religious and national obligation to free its country from occupation and has used every legitimate method for this goal which it will keep on doing in the future. Similarly, it considers the struggle of every oppressed nation working for their due rights and independence to be their legitimate right because every nation deserves to secure freedom from imperialism and attain their rights. It is due to these objectives that the Islamic Emirate considered it necessary to open a political office in the Islamic country of Qatar for the following reasons: 1. To talk and improve relations with the international community through mutual understanding. 2. To back such a political and peaceful solution which ends the occupation of Afghanistan, establishes an independent Islamic government and brings true security which is the demand and genuine aspiration of the entire nation. 3. To have meetings with Afghans in due appropriate time. 4. To establish contact with the United Nations, international and regional organizations and non-governmental institutions. 5. To give political statements to the media on the ongoing political situation. We also thank the government of Qatar and its Emir ‘Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani’ to have agreed with inaugurating the political office of Islamic Emirate and to have made everything easy in this regard.
IF YOU DON’T LIKE THE RESISTANCE END THE OCCUPATION
SOMALIA WAR REPORTS
Somalia Resistance Movement Attacks Occupation Headquarters
Somali soldiers at the U.N. compound in Mogadishu that militants struck Wednesday. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images. June 19, 2013 By PATRICK MCGROARTY in Johannesburg and IDIL ABSHIR in Nairobi, Kenya, Wall Street Journal [Excerpts] Militants attacked a United Nations compound in Somalia's capital on Wednesday, leaving at least 15 people dead and as many injured in the latest attempt to undermine the East African nation's new government [translation: government installed by U.S. backed foreign troops]. Seven gunmen wearing military uniforms detonated a pickup truck packed with explosives and then stormed into the compound in Mogadishu's K4 district, home to upscale hotels and most international organizations operating in the city, according to Ahmed Adan, a spokesman for Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon. Somali and African Union [foreign occupation] troops soon arrived and fighting ended in just over an hour, said Ben Parker, a spokesman for the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia, who said he had been in a meeting down the street from the compound when he heard multiple explosions and bursts of gunfire. All seven militants were killed in the exchange, said Mr. Adan. He declined to say how many of the dead were U.N. employees or foreigners. But at least two of those killed were South African: A spokeswoman for South African defense contractor Denel Group said the attack had killed two of the company's employees. The spokeswoman didn't provide additional details.
A Kenyan woman working for the U.N. was also killed in the attack, said an official in Somalia's Interior Ministry. [Southern Somalia is occupied by the Kenyan Army. T] Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for the attack in a message from a Twitter account it has used to make similar claims in the past.
“At a time like this, scorching irony, not convincing argument, is needed. Oh had I the ability, and could reach the nation’s ear, I would, pour out a fiery stream of biting ridicule, blasting reproach, withering sarcasm, and stern rebuke. “For it is not light that is needed, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. “We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake.” “The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppose.” Frederick Douglass, 1852
The past year – every single day of it – has had its consequences. In the obscure depths of society, an imperceptible molecular process has been occurring irreversibly, like the flow of time, a process of accumulating discontent, bitterness, and revolutionary energy. -- Leon Trotsky, “Up To The Ninth Of January”
General McChrystal Gives Police Airtight Alibi In Rolling Stone Reporter’s Mysterious Death
Stanley McChrystal 20 June 2013 by Courtney Massengale, The Duffel Blog ALEXANDRIA, VA – Retired General Stanley McChrystal has been questioned by authorities in the mysterious death of journalist Michael Hastings, sources confirmed Wednesday. Hastings was best known for a 2010 Rolling Stone article which led to McChrystal’s resignation and retirement. According to investigators, McChrystal was hosting a dinner party at his Alexandria home when Hastings was killed in a car accident in Los Angeles. Attendees at the dinner included prominent defense contractors, professors, and think-tank analysts. “We had just finished the pork loin when Wadsworth, the butler, came up to Stanley with a silver tray,” said Lesley Scarlet, a graduate student of Yale University. “Stan read the note on the tray and rose to make an announcement. He looked somber and gave a gracious tribute to Mr. Hastings, then offered a toast. Things were understandably awkward, but we continued.”
“You could really tell Stan was all broken up over the whole thing,” said Michael Green, a defense contractor with Boeing. Hastings is the latest in a string of reporters who have gone missing or died under mysterious circumstances. None of the incidents have been tied to McChrystal, despite his obvious motive and extensive background in special operations. “I can confirm that Gen. McChrystal was an individual of interest that we questioned in relation to the death of Mr. Hastings,” said Alexandria Police spokesman Col. Allen Mustard. “We responded to a request by the Los Angeles Police Department, but at no time was Gen. McChrystal a suspect.” Col. Mustard confirmed that “multiple witnesses” were able to corroborate McChrystal’s alibi that the General was “in the dining room, with Mr. Green, Professor Plum and Ms. Scarlet” when the accident took place. “We have verified the alibi by peeking in the folder sent to us from Los Angeles and have no reason to believe Gen. McChrystal was in any way involved in this incident. I’ve done what you asked, please, just don’t hurt my kids.” McChrystal gave a brief statement to the media outside his home. Reporters gathered outside were asked to move “a little to the left, closer to the large X in the lawn” prior to him answering any questions. “Mike’s untimely death was unfortunate. I’m sure the entire world of journalism is saddened to see such a promising career end so suddenly. He was doing just fine and probably had a lot more to give to the profession. “Now he can’t do anything about the issues very important people may have told him in confidence and off-the-record.” When asked about his well-timed dinner party, McChrystal, dressed in a Nehru jacket and holding a cat, thanked his guests “for being honest with the authorities since we all know what happens when we tell the wrong people the wrong things.” McChrystal ended the news conference by stating he was late for a meeting of his new venture capitol firm D.A.G.G.E.R. As if on cue, a black helicopter piloted by Jeffrey Sinclair descended from the sky, whisking McChrystal and his cat towards Crystal City.
Palestinian Farmer Shot By Foreign Occupation Troops For Irrigating His Land:
“The Whole Family Depends On The Production On This Land”
Muhareb Abu Omar, 48 (Photo: Rosa Schiano)
(Photo by Rosa Schiano) June 17, 2013 International Solidarity Movement, Rosa Schiano Gaza, Occupied Palestine
Friday afternoon, June 14, 2013, Muhareb Abu Omar, a Palestinian farmer aged 48, was wounded by Israeli army fire in the Deir El Balah, in the center of the Gaza Strip. Omar was irrigating his land in the village of Wadi As-Salqa, 600 meters from the barrier that separates Israel from the Gaza Strip. Omar reported that Israeli jeeps moved along the border while he was working. Suddenly, after about 10 minutes into the job, at approximately 19:30, a bullet struck him in the right leg. The soldiers probably shot from a jeep hummer. Omar was alone on his land while other farmers were working in adjacent lands. “I didn’t hear any firing, the soldiers used silent bullets. Suddenly I found myself wounded. I ran for 50 yards, then I crashed and I cried to my cousins that I was wounded”, said Omar. His cousins transported him to Al Aqsa Martyrs hospital. Omar’s family is composed of 14 members: Omar, his wife, 8 sons and 4 daughters. Five of his sons work with him on the family land. The whole family depends on the production on this land. Two of his sons, Nedal and Tareq, reported that Omar was reported to have an intermediate wound in the right tibia. Dr. Saleman Al Attar, Department of Orthopaedics of Aqsa Martyrs hospital, reported that the general conditions of Omar are good. “The wound shot from a firearm always creates complications. The bullet hit the right thigh and there is the presence of fragments”, said Dr. Al Attar. In the emergency room, the doctors performed a cleansing of the wound, firstly a debridement followed by bandaging. After 3 days or 72 hours, Omar will be subjected to a further removal of devitalized tissue. The doctors will not remove the bullet. “It is dangerous to remove the bullet as it is located in the neurovascular, where there are the arteries,” said Dr. Al Attar. The wound is closed. The patient will then be given antibiotics and analgesics for about 4 weeks. Dr. Al Attar stressed the psychological effect on patients who are aware of a bullet still inside the body. “The patient will always have the impression of experiencing pain in the area where the bullet is, even if the pain is not real. There are social workers who can provide psychological support for this. Every Palestinian suffering since birth suffers some psychological problems”, concluded Dr. Al Attar. During the last military offensive of November 2012, the al-Aqsa hospital has received many victims. “The hospital was full, we were trying to save those who were in better condition while others were dying patients in serious condition,” said Dr. Al Attar.
The arrangements for the cease-fire of 21 November 2012 established that the Israeli military forces should “refrain from hitting residents in areas along the border” and “cease hostilities in the Gaza Strip by land, by sea and by air, including raids and targeted killings.” However, Israeli military attacks by land and sea have followed from the day after the ceasefire, and Israeli warplanes are flying over the sky constantly in the Gaza Strip. Four civilians were killed by the end of the military offensive “Pillar of Defense” and more than 90 civilians have been wounded. These attacks against the civilian population of Gaza continue to occur amidst international silence. [To check out what life is like under a murderous military occupation commanded by foreign terrorists, go to: www.rafahtoday.org The occupied nation is Palestine. The foreign terrorists call themselves “Israeli.”]
CLASS WAR REPORTS
“‘The Population Is Revolting Against The Government Of Brazil,’ Said Mr. Peppe”
“The Inequality Is Very Sad, Even Revolting. And Now, The Population Of Brazil Is Waking Up”
“On Friday, Demonstrators Returned To The Streets In Nearly Sixty Cities”
“Much Of The Ire Is Directed At A Political System That Critics Say Affords Broad Impunity To Engage In Corruption While Mostly Ignoring The Demands Of Ordinary Brazilians”
June 21, 2013 By JOHN LYONS, LORETTA CHAO and MATTHEW COWLEY, Wall Street Journal. Luciana Magalhaes contributed to this article. [Excerpts] SÃO PAULO—For Alexandre Peppe, the last decade has been great. The 29-year-old from the poor outskirts of São Paulo got a good job in state government, bought a car and became the first in his family to go to college. All the same, he took to the streets this week with a million other members of Brazil's new middle class over a wide range of grievances, from high bus fares to corruption and crime. “The population is revolting against the government of Brazil,” said Mr. Peppe, who joined others to cram the broad avenues of São Paulo. “This middle class had economic growth in a period of low inflation, and suddenly they've unleashed a cauldron of complaints, on a range of issues like corruption, that have been accumulating for a decade,” said Maílson da Nóbrega, a former Brazilian finance minister. On Friday, demonstrators returned to the streets in nearly sixty cities, with reports of looting in Rio de Janeiro, where some of the protests have turned violent in recent days.
Demonstrators march through during one of many protests around Brazil's major cities in Rio de Janeiro June 20, 2013, tapping into widespread anger at poor public services, police violence and government corruption. REUTERS/Luciana Whitaker (
The protests have continued despite decisions by São Paulo and Rio to give in to a key demand for lower bus fares. But the protest movement has expanded beyond that issue to a field of middle class grievances. The demonstrations couldn't come at a worse time for Brazil, which is hosting the Confederations Cup soccer tournament in new stadiums built for next year's World Cup. For this soccer-mad nation, hosting the tournament was meant to cap a national rise toward global prestige. In recent days, soccer fans in cities like Salvador and other growing urban centers have had to run for cover from police firing rubber bullets in order to get to games, raising questions about whether Brazil can handle hosting the Cup next year. The tournament has become a catalyst for some of the protesters' complaints. That is because even in this soccer-mad country, the birthplace of Pelé, residents are increasingly frustrated at the amount of money that is been put into two major global events, the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, compared with the lack of progress in the issues that impact people's daily lives. No one in Brazil was caught more off guard than President Dilma Rousseff and her left-wing Workers Party, in power for the last decade.
Before the protesters poured onto the streets, Ms. Rousseff appeared to be cruising toward an easy re-election bid next year as expanded welfare programs boosted living standards of the poor, and a growing economy brought greater prosperity to millions more. Ms. Rousseff, the country's first female president, at first sought to align with the protesters by reminding marchers that her own political career came from the opposition. The strategy backfired after Workers Party officials sent their members to the streets, where they were booed by the stridently anti-party marchers. Ms. Rousseff held an emergency cabinet meeting on Friday, officials said. Governor Cid Gomes, the governor of Ceará state and a Rousseff ally, told reporters Friday that Ms. Rousseff called him on Thursday night and was in a state of “bewilderment.” Some say much of the explanation for why hundreds of thousands of Brazilians are on the streets right now can be found in Mr. Peppe's experience in recent years — and a school of thought in development economics about why seemingly better-off middle class populations have taken to the streets across the emerging world from Turkey to Chile. The idea is that populations begin to demand more of their leaders as their own economic conditions improve. Citizens who are better off have the luxury to focus on social grievances that seem less pressing to impoverished people whose biggest concern are earning enough to feed themselves. Mr. Peppe grew up in the sprawling northern outskirts of São Paulo, a poor and crime-ridden maze of small concrete homes during the years of four- digit inflation and successive currency crashes. His mother, who never learned to read, raised him on around $80 a month. His father, a cop, was killed when Mr. Peppe was 11. Amid Brazil's boom, Mr. Peppe was able to find work, take out loans to pay for a new car and apartment, and took a second job to pay for it. As he marched, he took photos of face-painted protesters with sleek a Sony Ericsson smartphone. But Mr. Peppe's prosperity was matched by the bitterness for the injustices that he says came into focus as his life expanded beyond his neighborhood. “The inequality is very sad, even revolting,” Mr. Peppe said. “And now, the population of Brazil is waking up.” Much of the ire is directed at a political system that critics say affords broad impunity to engage in corruption while mostly ignoring the demands of ordinary Brazilians.
Demonstrators attend a protest against the Confederations Cup and the government of Brazil in Recife City June 20, 2013. Brazil's biggest protests in two decades intensified on Thursday despite government concessions meant to quell the demonstrations, as 300,000 people took to the streets of Rio de Janeiro and hundreds of thousands more flooded other cities. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes
“Cities Like Rio Are Focusing Too Much Energy On Turning Into A Showcase For International Events While Neglecting Areas Like Schools And Public Transportation”
“Residents Of Rio's Poor, Historic, Hillside Communities Called Favelas Complain Of Gentrification Ahead Of
The Games — With Rising Costs Forcing Them To Move”
“A Bid To Clear The Poor Out And Make Way For New Office Buildings And Tourist Attractions In The City Center”
A demonstrator holds a sign that reads, “Brazil, a country of theft,” during an antigovernment protest in Porto Alegre, southern Brazil, June 20, 2013. Tens of thousands of demonstrators marched through the streets of Brazil's biggest cities on Thursday in a growing protest that is tapping into widespread anger at poor public services, police violence and government corruption. REUTERS/Gustavo Vara June 21, 2013 By LORETTA CHAO, Wall Street Journal [Excerpts] RIO DE JANEIRO— When Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes set out to fix this decaying seaside city in time for the soccer World Cup next year and the Olympics in 2016, the last thing he expected was to be negotiating with 300,000 angry protesters. But in recent days, residents have taken to the streets here as part of a nationwide protest movement that began over an increase in bus fares — since rescinded in Rio and São Paulo — but grew to include accusations that cities like Rio are focusing too
much energy on turning into a showcase for international events while neglecting areas like schools and public transportation. Demonstrations in Rio on Thursday were the biggest of any city so far, with crowds setting fire to a police post, police responding in force with tear gas and rubber bullets. At least 60 were injured in the chaos. The tension in Rio has been brewing for years as Mr. Paes, at 43 years old the city's youngest-ever mayor, turned to a classic strategy of using big sports events to help lure big corporate investors to help pay for long-needed infrastructure and transportation upgrades. Now, to Mr. Paes's surprise, the controversy over his corporate makeover is bubbling over among those who think it endangers the city's bohemian soul — and places corporate interests above those of the poor. Residents of Rio's poor, historic, hillside communities called favelas complain of gentrification ahead of the Games — with rising costs forcing them to move. The government has relocated 30,000 people from favelas in the name of various public projects, according to Renato Cosentino, spokesman for a local human-rights group, the World Cup and Olympics Popular Committee, members of whom turned up to protest in recent days. Moved residents are given the option to accept a cash payment or a new low-income housing unit built by the government. Mr. Paes is working with the federal government to build 50,000 such units under a program called “Minha Casa, Minha Vida,” or “My House, My Life.” But critics say the vast majority are being built on the far outskirts of the city in a bid to clear the poor out and make way for new office buildings and tourist attractions in the city center. The city's long-neglected downtown port area, for instance, isn't being used for public housing but rather for big-ticket real-estate development, including a $2.5 billion office complex by the Trump Organization. Marcelo Freixo, Mr. Paes's chief political rival, echoed a complaint heard in cities from New York to Istanbul. a bid to clear the poor out and make way for new office buildings and tourist attractions in the city center. A state representative and well-known human-rights activist, he has supported protests, though condemned violence on both sides. Tensions were flaring even before the recent protests. On May 25, Rio musician Bernardo “Botika” Botkay and his girlfriend approached Mr. Paes outside a Japanese restaurant to complain about corporate tycoons using the Olympics to remake poor neighborhoods.
In the argument that followed, Mr. Paes punched Mr. Botkay in the face, adding fuel to critics that he doesn't care for the real Rio, and concern among supporters that controversy over his strategy is getting to him. The mayor later apologized. As he addressed protesters this past week, Mr. Paes tried to strike an empathetic tone, saying that fares were decreased “out of respect” for protesters, and that he was aware transportation improvements were necessary. Mr. Paes argues that making Rio more business-friendly is necessary to improve conditions for everyone, including the poor. “At the end of the day, when you grow from an economic perspective, when things go well, the poor people [will] have jobs,” he said in an interview before the protests. He said that drastic changes were needed in Rio, which went bankrupt after Brazil moved its capital from Rio to Brasília in 1960. Crumbling buildings, traffic and, most importantly, violence plagued the city, driving Rio's talent to São Paulo and other cities, including Mr. Paes' own brother Guilherme, a managing partner at investment bank BTG Pactual. Rio's fortunes improved in recent years thanks partly to the offshore oil discoveries and a move by the state government to send in armed troops to begin to control violence in the favelas. But the city remained a bureaucratic nightmare, with its finances tied up in salaries and debt, and funds for investment shrinking to just 2% of the city's budget by 2009. One of the mayor's moves was to secure a $1 billion loan from the World Bank to consolidate the city's debt and free up funds needed for investment. But some of the moves have involved difficult trade-offs. Mr. Paes worked with Rio's transportation companies to consolidate hundreds of bus lines and build the “Bus Rapid Transit” system, which crisscrossed the city like dedicated subway lines. But when costs went up for the companies, so did fares, making people believe he was protecting corporate interests instead of the interests of the people.
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DANGER: POLITICIANS AT WORK
U.S. Government Seemingly Unaware Of Irony In Accusing Snowden Of Spying
June 22, 2013 The Borowitz Report WASHINGTON — The United States government charged former intelligence analyst Edward Snowden with spying on Friday, apparently unaware that in doing so it had created a situation dripping with irony. At a press conference to discuss the accusations, an N.S.A. spokesman surprised observers by announcing the spying charges against Mr. Snowden with a totally straight face. “These charges send a clear message,” the spokesman said. “In the United States, you can’t spy on people.” Seemingly not kidding, the spokesman went on to discuss another charge against Mr. Snowden—the theft of government documents: “The American people have the right to assume that their private documents will remain private and won’t be collected by someone in the government for his own purposes.” “Only by bringing Mr. Snowden to justice can we safeguard the most precious of American rights: privacy,” added the spokesman, apparently serious.
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