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Poet and Efran Kaye's tribute
to everyone killed in wars.

Bless the large numbers of Ethiopians,
the many good people in Indonesia, and
the folks of Russia, Greece and Egypt,
who are now playing it.


Most US people polled believe that 9/11 was
an "inside job",
but what would they feel if they
found out that it was
designed by Zionists, who
deliberately killed thousands
of innocent US
citizens to drive the US into wars on Muslims?

They'd be angry, right?

Fernando Imposimato, President of the Italian Supreme
Court, calls for a criminal investigation of 9/11, comparing
the attack to false flag incidents carried out by the CIA
in Italy: Operation Gladio.


"The 9/11 attacks were a global state terror operation
that was permitted by the US
administration, which
had foreknowledge of the operation, yet
intentionally unresponsive in order to make war
Afghanistan and Iraq," Imposimato declares
in a letter published by
the Journal of 9/11 Studies.

 Ferdinando Imposimato is the Honorary President
of the Supreme Court of Italy and a former Senator
who served on the Anti-Mafia Commission in three
administrations. He is the author or co-author of 7
books on international terrorism, state corruption,
and related matters, and a Grand Officer of the
Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy.

As a former state prosecutor, Imposimato has
extensive experience in investigating high-
profile crimes, including the kidnapping and
assassination of Italian Prime Minster Aldo
Moro & the attempted assassination of Pope
John Paul II. He also worked on the Anti-
Mafia commission as a Senator, giving him a
wealth of knowledge on the inner workings
of organized crime syndicates.


Imposimato points to several facts contradicting
the official 9/11 story, including the free-fall
collapse of WTC Building 7, the report that the
CIA met with Osama Bin Laden in a Dubai hospital
in July 2001, and the overwhelming evidence of
insider trading before 9/11 that didn't lead to any
criminal charges, reports digitaljournal.com

The following is an excerpt from Imposimato’s letter
published by the Journal of 9/11 Studies on Sunday:


The reports of the National Institute of Standards
and Technology (NIST), November 20, 2005, set
forth the following conclusions:

The airplanes that struck each of the Twin Towers
caused a breach as well as an explosion evidenced
by a giant fireball. The remaining jet fuel flowed onto
the lower floors, sustaining the fires. The heat from
the fires deformed the building structures and both
towers collapsed completely from top to bottom.

Very little that was of any size remained after these
events except steel as well as aluminum fragments
and the pulverized dust from the concrete floors.


The World Trade Center 7 also collapsed–in a way that
was inconsistent with the common experience of
engineers. All three buildings collapsed completely,
but Building 7 was not hit by a plane. WTC7’s collapse
violated common experience and was unprecedented.


The NIST report does not analyze the actual nature of the
collapses.  According to experts at the Toronto Hearings
(Sept. 8-11, 2011), the collapses had features that indicate
controlled explosions. I agree with architect Richard Gage
  & engineer Jon Cole both highly experienced professionals
[from Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth – now
numbering 1,700 strong], who have arrived at their
conclusions through reliable tests, scientific proof,
and the visual testimony of people above suspicion,
including firefighters and victims.

The authoritative theologian David Ray Griffin has
described very precisely why the hypothesis of
controlled demolition should be considered.
Various witnesses heard bursts of explosions.


According to NIST the collapse of Building 7 was
due to fires provoked by the collapse of the twin
towers. Chemist and independent researcher Kevin
Ryan, however, has demonstrated that NIST gave
contradictory versions of the collapse of Building 7.

In a preliminary report NIST declared that WTC7
was destroyed because of fires provoked by diesel
fuel stored in the building, while in a second report
this fuel was no longer considered the cause of the
building’s collapse. Additional comments on the NIST
version of events have been made by David Chandler,
another expert witness at the Journal of 9/11 Studies
Letters, September 2012 Toronto Hearings.

Despite NIST’s claim of 3 distinct phases of collapse,
 Chandler pointed out that many available videos show
that for about two and a half seconds the acceleration
of the building cannot be distinguished from freefall.
NIST has been obliged to agree with this empirical fact
as pointed out by Chandler; now understood by everyone.


The only possibility for achieving justice is to submit the
best evidence concerning the involvement of specific
individuals in 9/11 to the Prosecutor of the International
Criminal Court and ask him to investigate according to
the articles 12, 13, 15 and 17, letters a and b, of the
Statute of the ICC, recalling the preamble of the Statute:


“Recognizing that such grave crimes threaten the
peace, security and the well being of the world,”


“Affirming that the most serious crimes of concern to
the international community as a whole must not go
unpunished and that their effective prosecution must
be ensured by taking measures at the national level
and by enhancing international cooperation, ”


“Determined to put an end to impunity for the perpetrators
of these
crimes and thus to contribute to the prosecution
of such crimes,
recalling that it is the duty of every state
to exercise its jurisdiction over
those responsible for
international crimes.
"  reports infowars.com.

More and more people from all walks of life and all
professions seem
to be questioning the “official”
narrative of what happened on 9/11.
Those who
are questioning the events of 9/11 may be moving
the radar of the corporate media from being
labeled “conspiracy
theorists” to legitimate
investigators with legitimate questions and
concerns, reports examiner.com


Theorists believe that the World Trade Center
buildings were
demolished by bombs, phone
calls from the planes were made up,
and the
former President George W. Bush secretly
profited from
the attacks, reports


The World Trade Center collapse appeared similar to a
demolition. Many speculate that the towers
were in fact blown down
with explosives placed in
selected locations. Some witnesses heard
inside the building as they attempted to escape. Many

architects & scientists maintain that plane fuel couldn't
enough heat to melt the steel frame of the
buildings that collapsed,

little girl frightens USA


Article by Finian Cunningham.

100 years ago, the assassination of Archduke
Franz Ferdinand and his wife in the
city of Sarajevo, was the fatal spark that

 ignited a geopolitical powder keg in Europe.

Within a month, all the major powers of Europe
 would be embroiled in the First World War, which
 also dragged in Russia and the US. The war would
 last for nearly five years and resulted in at least
 20 million deaths.

That catastrophe has perplexing resonances
today. One incident set off a conflagration
 back then, because it came amid simmering
rivalries among imperial powers. Another
resonance is how historians recount that, in
 the run-up to the First World War few believed
 that a war in "modern, civilized" Europe was
likely, because of the belief that diplomacy
 would prevail.

Today, we see a similar reckless goading by
 imperial powers across Europe. The US and
 its European NATO allies are embarked on a
25-year expansion towards Russia's heartland.

 The dynamic of encroachment has only sped up,
not lessened. This expansion is provocative,
 aggressive and duplicitous, because it not only
 presents a military threat to Russia, it also flies
 in the face of past commitments by the US-led
 NATO alliance not to do so, such as in the 1997
 Founding Act, signed with Moscow.

Russia has every right to feel threatened by ever-
encroaching ballistic missile systems on its borders
 that could be used in a pre-emptive nuclear strike
 by the US and its allies. That concern is heightened
 ever since Washington invoked a "first strike
 doctrine" under President George W Bush,
which Obama still retains.

Yet, provocatively, Washington dismisses Russian
 President Vladimir Putin's concerns about NATO
 expansion, as if they are the deliriums of a Soviet

The complacency of the present time towards
 the dangers of war, has disturbing echoes of
the past - on the eve of World War I. A major
factor in the present complacency is that the
 Western mainstream media are failing, woefully,
 to properly report on the gravity of the situation
 in Ukraine, and just how provocative that
 parlous situation is to Russia's vital interests.

This week saw the signing of a trade pact between
 the European Union and Petro Poroshenko, the
 declared president of Ukraine. The Western media
 have hailed it in glowing terms as "a landmark event"
 and a positive outcome of democracy in the former
 Soviet Republic. That blithe assessment invites
 dangerous ignorance and complacency.

The truth is that the signing of the EU trade pact is
 the outcome of an illegal regime-change operation in
 Ukraine fomented by Washington and its NATO allies.

 That regime change involved CIA-backed mass
 murder of civilians (the February 20 sniper shootings
 in Kiev's Maidan Square) and the overthrow of an
 elected government.

Since the illegal coup against President Viktor
Yanukovych, the Western-backed Kiev regime has
 been waging war on ethnic Russian populations
 in the east and south of the country, who refuse
 to recognize the regime as legitimate.

 Poroshenko, the billionaire oligarch who is now
 signing over the sovereign affairs of Ukraine to
 the US, NATO and the EU, was elected president
 in a farcical vote last month, where only 45% of
the electorate turned out and large sections of
the east and south did not even cast a ballot
amid a murderous "anti-terror" crackdown by
 Kiev troops and paramilitaries.

The campaign of terror by the Kiev forces against
 pro-Russian civilians was launched at the end of
 April, days after CIA chief John Brennan made a
 secret visit to the Kiev regime. Brennan briefed
the Kiev leadership, including the so-called Prime
 Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, who only last week
used Nazi language to vow that his military forces
 would "cleanse sub-humans" from the country -
 referring to the ethnic Russian populations and
the self-defence militias they have set up in the
 Donetz and Lugansk regions.

The impostor-President Poroshenko may have
 declared a ceasefire over the past week, but
 the hostilities against civilian centres continue
 unabated. Crimes against humanity include the
 bombing of homes, churches, schools & hospitals,
 the use of White Phosphorus incendiary bombs
 and exploding bullets, as well as the shelling of
 electricity and water supplies.

Western media have largely ignored these violations
 by the "new democratic Ukrainian government", or at
 best have reported them as "unverified" or merely as
 "breaches of the ceasefire by both sides".

Western governments and media have gone into
 denial mode, refusing to acknowledge what even
the United Nations this week confirms as a massive
 displacement of over 150,000 people from eastern
 Ukraine.  Why are such numbers fleeing, if the
 violence is not also massive?

Another example of the Western cover-up over state
 terrorism in Ukraine, is the recent killing of three
journalists. Earlier this month, Russian journalist Igor
 Kornelyuk and his colleague Anton Voloshin were
 killed near Lugansk when they were hit with a mortar
 shell. Survivors of the attack said it was deliberate
 targeting by Kiev troops. Previously, Italian journalist
 Andrea Rochelli was slain near Slavyansk in another
 incident that bore the hallmarks of shoot-to-kill.

In the past week, by contrast, there was an
 outpouring of condemnation from Washington and
 other Western governments, as well as widespread
 media coverage, of the jailing of three Al Jazeera
 journalists in Egypt. Those sentences were no
 doubt a gross miscarriage of justice. But what
 about the taking of journalists' lives in Ukraine?
 Where is the Western condemnations and 
media coverage?

Western-backed regime change and genocidal
 repression in Ukraine, is a collision course of
 extreme provocation towards Russia and its
 vital interests. Yet it is presented to the
 Western public as if it is a "good news" story
 about democratic European enlargement,
 which, perversely, is being spoiled by Russian

This is a powder-keg situation in Europe, led
 by US geopolitics and its European henchmen,
 and which is wrapped up in an explosive shell
 of ignorance, by a lying Western media.

The repetition of history is not inevitable.
But the chances are increased when people
are kept in the dark about the underlying
causes of war and conflict.

China Russia reach deal

Petko Ganchev, wrote this article for Pravda.Ru.

Today it is absolutely clear that there is
a multipurpose strategic operation being
 conducted on the territory of the former
 Soviet Union. Ukraine plays a key role in
 the operation. Why Ukraine?

It's an open secret - the West has always
wanted to master the vast territories of
Russia and Eurasia, the axial space of the
Earth, with its enormous natural resources.

 To achieve this goal, there was the outer belt
 (Turkey, Pakistan, South Korea, Japan) built
 around Russia-Eurasia after World War Two.
 The inner belt (Georgia, Moldova, Lithuania,
 Latvia, Estonia) was built after the
 collapse of the USSR.

Successively, after the Cold War, almost all
East European countries - Soviet satellites -
were admitted to NATO under the condition
of their membership in the European Union.

 But the West didn't get closer to Russia's
western borders. There were 2 Russia-
friendly countries left - historically,
culturally and economically - Belarus
 and Ukraine.

Belarus is closely tied to Russia ethnically,
culturally and economically. Ukraine, with
its failed state organization was a weak link.

The reason for that is that the regions from
which Ukraine was created after World War
 II (1945), were formed by areas with very
different religious and value systems.

In his famous book "The Clash of Civilizations
and the Remaking of World Order" by Samuel P.
 Huntington, the author described Ukraine as
one of civilizational "splits," where one can
expect clashes, i.e. wars.

That's why Ukraine was chosen by the US
 as the key to implement a multi-purpose
 strategic operation.

 In the Middle East, the US has always used
 monarchies from the Middle Ages as allies -
 Saudi Arabia and Qatar. In Ukraine, the most
loyal ally of the United States was Poland.
The country was used to train "Right Sector"
 fighters and other figures from anti-Russian
 ultranationalist structures.

What are the main objectives and directions of
 this geo-strategic operation, the implementation
 of which began immediately after the US was
 forced to freeze its activities on Syria and Iran?

First and foremost, the goal is to strike a blow on
 Russia as the most active US geopolitical rival in
 the new millennium. When Ukraine leaves Russia's
 orbit, the US will implement several geostrategic

- to move air defense systems and other NATO
 systems closer to Russian borders: neutralizing
 its defense, including its nuclear capability;

- to undermine the Russian economy by cutting
 relations with the economy of Ukraine (Poroshenko
 has already ordered, following instructions from the
 US, to cease cooperation with the Russian defense

- to burden the budget of the Russian Federation with
 bigger spending to maintain refugees from Ukraine
 and substitute imports from Ukraine;

- to close Russia's gas and oil pipelines to the EU
 to thus block the inflow of foreign currency into
the Russian economy;

- to prevent creation of the Customs Union
 and the Eurasian Economic Union;

- to destabilize the political system in Russia,
 accusing its leadership of what is happening
 in Ukraine;

- to stop or minimize economic cooperation
 between Russia and the EU;

- to sow distrust between Russia and other BRICS
 countries - Brazil, India, China, South Africa.

Secondly, the U.S. plans to strike a blow on the
European Union, which, along with China, acts
 as a major competitor in the economic sphere.
The EU needs to be reminded of its secondary role.

The United States seeks to confirm the assessment
 of Russophobe Brzezinski in his book "The Grand
 Chessboard" (1997), according to which the EU
was a "U.S. protectorate."

 For the U.S. it is vitally important to strengthen the
 economic dependence of the EU in light of their
 signing the "Transatlantic Free Trade Agreement"
 to turn the EU towards the consumption of US
shale gas. In this regard, the EU is the most
developed market.

To achieve this, Ukrainian company Naftogaz (the
 largest company in Ukraine) became  the property
 of a new consortium, whose leadership includes
the son of U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and
former Polish President Kwasniewski.

At the same time, Chevron is preparing shale gas
 production in south-eastern Ukraine - in the areas
 of the towns of Slavyansk and Kramatorsk.

Chervon, directly or indirectly, through the European
 Commission, put pressure on Bulgaria, forcing the
 country to abandon the South Stream project.

 At the same time, the U.S. continues to put pressure
 on France, to make the country freeze the sale of
two Mistral helicopter carriers to Russia. France's
 largest bank PNB faces a fine of $10 billion for
 violating the financial embargo that the U.S. put
on Cuba, Sudan and Nicaragua.

 At the same time, the United States, with its
national debt of 17 trillion dollars and GDP of
14 trillion, prepares to grant NATO's Eastern
 European members $1 billion for new weapons.

Fortunately, on the "grand chessboard" of world
 civilization, the U.S. does not play against virtual
 opponents. The geo-strategy of the United States
 does not unfold like the Desert Storm Operation in
2 003. Today, the US is playing against experienced

 Russia is rising after the disgrace of the Yeltsin era,
 and the EU becomes increasingly aware of the fact
 that the only chance to survive is hidden in the
 slogan "More Europe for Europeans!"

The last elections to the European Parliament have
 confirmed the trend. Hitherto, with so many large-
scale geopolitical operations after World War II
 (Korea, Cuba, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc.),
 the US has not been able to boast considerable

Through all those wars, as George Friedman says
 in his book "The Next 100 Years," America has
 stimulated the growth of the national economy.

America was gradually and steadily evolving from
 a manufacturing economy to the economy of a
 military-industrial complex. In history, such a
 condition has always heralded the end of any

working toward very cold war


The US government is a “criminal enterprise”
 with a foreign policy that places the well-
being of Israel ahead of America’s, a political
commentator in San Antonio, Texas says.

“This is a criminal enterprise that has the support
 of both of the major political parties in the United
 States,” Mark Dankof, a broadcaster and former
US Senate candidate, says.

This criminal enterprise “principally involves
 conducting a foreign policy firstly for Israel,
 secondly for the international central banks
and thirdly for the oil and natural gas
 consortiums,” Dankof says.

There is no difference between the policies
 of the Obama and Bush administrations, he
 notes. Both “are supporting the criminal
 policies of Benjamin Netanyahu,” he adds.

Dankof dismisses as a deception the recent
 remarks by US Secretary of State John Kerry
 that the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq was a
 serious mistake:

“This is an attempt to absolve John Kerry and
 Barack Obama of the responsibility for all the
 criminal policies that they have carried out.”

In an interview with Chinese news agency Geo
 News, Kerry acknowledged that many problems
 in the Middle East, have their roots in that war.

George W. Bush, ordered the invasion of Iraq
under a pretext --- that former Iraqi dictator,
 Saddam Hussein, possessed weapons of
 mass destruction.

 In October 2004, a CIA report revealed
 that Saddam Hussein did not possess any
weapons of mass destruction at the time
 of the invasion.

In a survey out on Wednesday 2nd June,
Quinnipiac University Polling Institute,

33% of registered voters name Obama
as the worst president since 1945.

 28% choose his predecessor, George
Bush, as the worst.

By Jim Jones

For many, myself included I suppose, the tragic
 events unfolding in Ukraine have been riveting
over the last couple of months. No need here to
 go into the sordid history of Coloured Revolutions
 and the CIA/NATO role in them; most reading this
 medium as opposed to CNN/SKY/VOA, are informed
 people and are aware of the manoeuvrings of the
 West and the associated puppet states in trying
embroil Russia in a war it doesn't want and in
extending NATO frontiers to the heart of Russia.

Missile strikes from Ukraine, for example, would be
 in Moscow in 10 minutes, leaving no reaction time
 and fits neatly within the new US policy of a "first
 Strike" nuclear capability. [As opposed to the
retaliatory strike doctrine of the last 40 years].

We all know what happened in 1961, when
 Khrushchev put Soviet Missiles into Cuba after
the US put missiles into Turkey. The US wasn't
very impressed at all. What is not well known
that Kennedy asked Khrushchev to "cut him
slack" and withdraw the missiles without
to the US' withdrawal of its missiles
from Turkey!

 The US had upped the rhetoric so much, that it
 couldn't be seen to lose face in the public arena
 - condescendingly, Khrushchev accommodated.

Hold that thought of "face saving" as we explore
 the current Ukraine Crisis.

The US/NATO pushed the EU to pressure the Ukraine
 to join the EU and swing to the West. They almost
succeeded 4 years ago with their Orange Revolution.

 But Russia had learnt a thing or two about the
 Coloured Revolutions and mounted a successful
 and embarrassing reversal of the revolution and
 installed their own man in Ukraine who was leading
 Ukraine back along the Russian brotherhood line.

Four years later, after over $5 billion in NGO funding
a huge amount of State Department scheming
CIA covert action, the US finally got a chance
 to redress the "egg on face incident" that the
Russians had made for them.

The US played a "background role" in this - preferring
 to have the EU seen as the driving force behind the
 Maidan. However, leaked phone calls, like that made
 to Cabinet Minister Ashton, which clearly identified
the role of paid mercenaries in killing both Police &
 protesters, and later, Viktoria Nuland [US State Dept]
hand-picking who will be in the Ukraine
and saying the EU can go get fucked -
did nothing to
endear the US to the EU -- it came
hard on the heels
of revelations of extensive phone
tapping of EU
leaders' phones etc. by the US.

Then we have the unsavoury influence of the Right
 Sektor in Ukraine being pushed, funded and trained
 by NATO and the US's Kerry, Nuland, John McCain,
 Mark Twain and all, were seen in public endorsing
 the very Right Sektor extremists that the German
 government was in the process of declaring as

Europe could see itself being plunged back 70 years
 with the rise of neo Nazi's, not just in Germany - but
 across Europe. [Remember Anders Behring Breivik
 and his mass killings in Norway: an ultra nationalist].

Europe also asked the question, what is the US going
 to lose over this? If Russia turns off the gas, Europe
 freezes: the economy of Europe goes down the toilet!

Already Germany is losing billions of Euros in trade
 with Russia, France has several military deals with
 Russia, the supply of Mistral Class ships for one,
 and Putin has promised follow-ons from that. Italy
 is supplying armour vehicles, many EU nations
trade with Russia - so, US, what sanctions are
to hurt you, the EU asks?

Germany has a growing discord there over the
year occupation of Germany by US forces -
see demonstrations - Yankees go home!
is realising that the US cares, not for
them, but
only for US and US businesses.

Against this background, we are witnessing the
 separation of the US/EU and a drawing closer of
 EU/Russia on common grounds & shared interests.

I was appalled: driven to tears by the criminal
of the Kyiv Junta's ex facto war crimes/
against humanity. The shelling and
bombing of
civilians [non-combatants the
Junta declares
are Terrorists]. The targeting
and destructionof
schools, kindergartens and
hospitals - with the
murder of 25 wounded in
the hospital - shot by
Junta troops!

Destruction of the means of
support of life
  - with water supplies destroyed,
installations and sanitary plants
by shelling. The shooting of women
children leaving the region for shelter in

 Crimea, by bus. The execution style killing
civilians in a town by Junta forces, who
the people up and shot them in the
back of
their heads. The use of chemical
against civilians - chlorine gas
[where is
Obama's Red Line on this?]. The
targeting of
TV reporters in the area trying
to objectively
record events. I'm sure that
I have missed some

 I cried out from the depths of despair for justice
surely Russia would intervene; surely Russia
would protect it's people like it has said it would?

And all along, that is exactly what the US has been
 saying too - telling the Ukrainian Junta to commit
 further acts and atrocities against the people who
 simply want true democracy in the East.

To help them in this, they even get them to
demonise and degrade the people there.
 Junta leaders have called the Russians in
 the East, "sub-human" - those of you as old
 as I am, will have heard that phrase before.

They are called parasites and vermin by the
 new Choco King Junta leader Poroshenko.
 Such a debasing of the population makes it
 more acceptable to murder them and commit
 atrocities against a subhuman species - not
 much higher than animals really, are they?

The provocation of Russia in this regard has been
 carefully stage managed by the US, intent as always
 to let it appear as the EU 's doing, while all the time
 ensuring that their people are the ones pulling the
 strings in Kiev - the CIA/FBI and State Department
are up
to their proverbial balls in Kiev's business.

 Don't see the EU featuring though. The US has
 pushed the warmonger Russian story all through
 Europe - putting the fear of the bogyman into all
ex Soviet states, and determined to show them
all how much they need NATO's protection.
 [In truth, the world needs to be protected from
 the US].

However, Russia has consistently demonstrated
 restraint and maturity in handling the world crisis.

 Since the failed US--led revolution in Georgia,
Russia has been seen to be taking the moral
 high ground from the US and their consistent
 lies [WMD et.al].

The lies over Georgia were exposed and eventually
 the EU came out & confirmed that Georgia started
 the war. Reluctantly, the Western media has had
admit to "errors" in reporting - all of which have
 favoured the Russian position. Remember the
 incredible piece of statesmanship from Russia
 in pulling the war rug out from under the US's
over Syrian Chemical weapons?!

Russia has quietly been cementing relationships
 in Europe - building "partnerships' with European
 countries, and is doing so in accordance with
 international law and through responsible,
mature actions.

All of this has been driving a wedge between the
 US and the EU. This hasn't gone unnoticed - the
 US cannot accept that they are not in the driving
 seat of a single seater any more. Goading and
 provoking Russia into attacking the Ukraine is
how they will demonstrate that the Russia of
 today is what they told everyone that the
USSR of old, was.

Putin has been smarter than they realised.

 Reuters reported on July 1st:

Ukrainian forces struck at pro-Russian separatist
 bases in the eastern regions with air and artillery
strikes on Tuesday, after President Poroshenko
 announced he would not renew a ceasefire, but
 go on the offensive to rid Ukraine of "parasites".

His decision quickly drew fire from Russian President
 Vladimir Putin who said Poroshenko had disregarded
 the advice of himself & German and French leaders.
 Putin said Poroshenko would now have to bear full
 responsibility for veering off the road to peace.

Poroshenko, who accuses Russia of fanning the
 conflict and allowing fighters and equipment to
 cross the border to support the rebels, then
his back on another renewal of a 10-
unilateral ceasefire after the phone talks
 involving Putin, German Chancellor Angela
 Merkel, and President Francois Hollande.

The important thing here is that Putin obtained
 consensus from France and Germany in a four-
way dialogue. This consensus was broken by
 Poroshenko, under pressure from US handlers.

 The facts are obvious. What it also shows, is
once again the US has marginalised the
EU and
shown scant regard for the EU position.

This now opens the door for Russia to reiterate its
 threat; "Putin said Moscow will continue to defend
 the interests of ethnic Russians abroad - up to 3
 million of whom live in the east of Ukraine, which
 has been in separatist ferment since April."

By obtaining consensus to a path of peace, and
 seeing it broken, Moscow now has the mandate
 to use force... IF it wants to.

The question is, does Russia want or need to?
That famous General of Guerrilla warfare, Vo

 Nguyen Giap [Incidentally, his book Peoples War,
 People's Army is worth reading] said, "we do not
 want to defeat the enemy, we simply want him to
leave our country!". In this regard, the Ukrainian
Junta cannot win the war in Novorussiya.

Firstly, they have completely lost the battle for
the hearts and minds of the people --- through
brutal atrocities they have committed.

 Their transparent attempt at a Kosovo type ethnic
 cleansing, has been seen for what it is and has
 made people more determined to "hold their
ground". Their brutality has now created a
 generational animosity, which will not be
 resolved in our life-time.

Secondly, militarily they can't succeed - every day,
Novorussiya is gaining in strength and skills. The
 skill level of Novorussiya's troops is much higher
 than those of the basic conscripted Junta forces
 and they're much more motivated than the Junta
 forces - they are fighting for their existence and
 homeland. Conventional military doctrine states
that we require a 10 to 1 advantage to press a
 successful attack against a defending enemy.

 1,000 to 1 is not enough to succeed in a Guerrilla
 war scenario. Look at the hiding the Yanks got in
 Vietnam and they poured hundreds of thousands
of troops into there, used the might of total air
superiority and naval bombardment etc, and still
 got their arses kicked. Ask them how many they
 and NATO had in Afghanistan fighting "towel
 heads"? [and still lost].

The Ukrainian Army has about 30,000 troops
 committed against 10,000 in the Novorussiya
 Army, and many Junta forces are actually
 surrendering without a fight, handing over
gear, getting on a bus and going home
with mum
who came to collect their sons.

Also, the Junta
is bankrupt. They can't even
feed their army;
people are deserting and
walking home,
because of no food or pay.

To save face: that wonderful US terminology
again; I see it is proposed that Novorussiya
become a Russian protectorate! The US is
 looking to stem the Junta's haemorrhaging.

All Russia needs to do, is open a humanitarian
 corridor into Novorussiya and maintain/police it
 and supply Novorussiya with what war materiel
 they ask for. And it can do all that with the tacit
 approval of Europe - the US having gone a bridge
 too far in Ukraine. Russia can allow the Junta to
 bleed to death here and like Georgia before; the
 US will be powerless to stop it.

The US has had it's last Tango in Europe.

Jim Jones

Urgent appeal: Message from Slavyansk

Igor Strelkov makes an urgent appeal to the
 international community as western-backed
 Ukrainian forces slaughter Russian-speaking
 citizens, strafing women and children with
 military hardware.

 Washington, Paris and London look on and
continue to support the Ukrainian government.
 A massacre is taking place, the west is
with the Devil.

Urgent Appeal by Igor Strelkov, July 4, 2014

Good day.

I would like to make a short statement with respect
 to what is happening around Slavyansk. With respect
 to what is happening here. And, well, to make an
 appeal, if you will.

Yesterday, the enemy completely surrounded
 Nikolayevka. The enemy shelled the city in the
 fiercest possible way, using all types of weapons.
 Using heavy MLRS systems, howitzers, mortars,
 tanks, APCs. The destruction is enormous.
 It is simply impossible to determine the numbers of
 casualties, because nothing works in the city now.

Our units that are in Nikolayevka at this moment
 continue the battle in complete encirclement.
We have no communications with them.

Nikolayevka has been completely cut off from
 Slavyansk. At this very moment, a large enemy
 column of armoured vehicles is moving toward
 Semyonovka from the south, along the Kharkov-
Rostov highway. At the same time, the enemy
 is continuing uninterrupted artillery shelling of
 the city and of Semyonovka.

 Yesterday, the Nikolayevka Thermal Power
Plant was destroyed to the ground and set
 on fire.

To put it bluntly, we are dealing here with
 unconcealed genocide. In other words, to break
 the resistance of the Militia, the enemy is using
all the available types of weaponry against the
 civilian population.

Naturally, seeing the destruction and the death
 of the civilian population, militiamen are starting
 to lose the will to continue fighting.

I would like to say to you that, in Slavyansk, there
 is not one Chechen, not one mercenary. There is
 not a single person here who did not come of their
 own good will. If, before, 90% of the fighters were
 local, now the ratio is 95%.

 Out of the entire garrison, there are maybe several
dozen people who came from Russia. The majority,
 the overwhelming majority are citizens of Ukraine.
Among them, the overwhelming majority are
 Donbass residents.

 These are people who consciously took up arms to
 defend their homes, their families, their Motherland.
 To defend their language and their culture. To defend
 Russia. Because these people never separated from
 her. They consider themselves Russian. They want
to live in Russia.

This right was taken from them a long time ago.
And now, when they tried to restore this right,
 Russia does not want to help them reunite with
their people, with their big Russian family.

It is difficult to understand and accept, that,
over three months (it will soon be three months
 since we arrived in Slavyansk to help the local
 population defend their rights), that, over these
 three months, no real help has arrived.

I do not claim that Russia does not help. A
 huge stream of humanitarian cargo, equipment,
uniforms, comes to us through private channels.
 But, that, which we desperately need, does not,
 at this time, arrive.

Please understand, that even if we get two tanks,
 four, even ten tanks, five-six artillery pieces, even
 if a plane flies here once, this will have no impact
 whatsoever. Over the course of the ceasefire,
 the Ukrainian army performed a full mobilization
and concentration of forces.

Over sixty heavy artillery pieces are pointed a
t Semyonovka and at Slavyansk at this time.
 At Kramatorsk. Two dozen MLRS systems,
 including Grad, Uragan and Smerch Heavy
 mortars. All of them are pointed here.

The enemy has so much ammunition - I did not
see so much in Chechnya. In our time, we did
 not have so many shells. And the entire set of
 this artillery is shelling us without a stop. The
supply columns are coming in continuously.
 They are transferring in more equipment.

Kharkov diligently repairs a dozen and a half
 armoured vehicles a day. We hit one or two
 armoured vehicles a day. No more than that.
 The enemy is able to grow its forces faster
 than it expends them. Not just faster -
 much faster.

If Russia is not able to secure an immediate
 termination of fire and the execution of a truce,
or if it does not step in with its armed forces to
 protect us, to protect the Russian people that
 reside here, who are a part of the Russian nation,
 we will be exterminated.

We will be exterminated in the course of a week,
 two weeks at most. And Slavyansk will be the
 first to be exterminated, together with its still-
numerous population. Over thirty thousand
 civilians are still left here.

I am being asked to take on the responsibility
 for their death. And for the death of the Militia
 brigade under my command. We are ready to
 fight. We are ready to die. But we do not want
to die senselessly, burying beneath the ruins
of the city of those people who believed in us.

Some believe that I am panicking, that I
am nervous. Yes, I am nervous. Every day,
my soldiers are dying. The hospitals are
 overflowing with wounded. It is very
difficult to see children without legs,
 torn apart by exploding shells.

We will continue to fight. But we
 desperately need help.

civilians being murdered by Kiev coup forces

Washington's War Crimes Spread from
 Africa and the Middle East to Ukraine

By Paul Craig Roberts

A person might think that revulsion in "the world
 community" against Washington's wanton slaughter
 of civilians in eight countries would have led to War
Crimes Tribunal warrants issued for the arrest of
presidents Clinton, Bush, Obama & many officials
 in their regimes.  But the vocal part of "the world
 community"-- the West -- has become inured to
 Washington's crimes against humanity and
doesn't bother to protest.  Indeed, many of
these governments are complicit in the US's
 crimes, and there could just as well be arrest
 warrants for members of European governments.

The one exception is Russia. The Ministry of Foreign
 Affairs of the Russian Federation has published a
 White Book on violations of human rights and the
 rule of law in Ukraine.  Propagandized Americans
 think that all the violations in Ukraine are made
by Russians.  The White Book carefully and
 accurately documents reported violations that
 occurred in Ukraine for four months from
 December 2013 through March 2014.

The White Book is available here:


  You will not hear much or anything about it from
presstitute US media, & it's unlikely to receive
 much coverage in Europe. The facts are so greatly
 at odds with the West's position, that the White
 Book is a huge embarrassment to the West.

The slaughter of Ukrainians on Washington's orders
 by Washington's stooge government in Kiev, has
 worsened considerably in the past three months,
 producing more than 100,000 Ukrainian refugees
 fleeing into Russia for protection from strikes
 against civilian housing, from the air, artillery,
 and tanks. 

Every effort by Russia's government to involve
 Washington, the European Union, and Kiev in
 negotiations to find a peaceful settlement,
has failed.

Washington is not interested in a settlement.
 Disturbed by its NATO vassals' dependence
 on Russian energy and the growing economic
 relationships between Russia and Europe,
 Washington is at work through its Kiev proxy
 murdering citizens in eastern and southern
parts of present-day Ukraine that once were
 part of Russia.

 Washington has declared these civilians to be
 "terrorists" and is trying to force Russia to
 intervene militarily in order to protect them.

  Russia's protective intervention would then
 be denounced by Washington as "invasion
 and annexation."  Washington would use
this propaganda, which would blare from the
 Western media, to pressure Europe to support
Washington's sanctions against Russia. The
 sanctions would then effectively destroy the
existing economic relationships between
 Russia and Europe.

Washington hasn't had success in imposing
 sanctions, because, although Washington's
 European vassals, such as Merkel, are willing,
 business interests in Germany, France, and
 Italy stand opposed.

 Washington is hoping that by forcing Russia
 to act, Washington can sufficiently demonize
Russia and silence the European business
 interests  with propaganda.

To counter Washington's ploy, Putin had Russia's
 Duma rescind his authority to send Russian forces
 into Ukraine.  Unlike US' presidents Clinton, Bush,
 and Obama, Putin does not claim the authority to
use military forces without permission from the

Washington's response to Putin's stand down is
 to increase the slaughter of civilians, all the while
 denying that any such slaughter is occurring.

  Washington is determined not to acknowledge
 the existence of the slaughter for which it is
 responsible, although everyone knows that
 Kiev would not dare to take on Russia
 without Washington's backing.

Putin's bet is that European business interests
 will prevail over Washington's European lap dogs.

 This is a hopeful and optimistic bet, but Washington
 is already at work to threaten and undermine the
 resistance of European business interests. Using
 concocted charges, Washington has stolen $9
from France's biggest bank --- for doing
business with
countries disapproved of by

 This was Washington's warning to European
 business to comply with Washington's sanctions.
Washington even told France that the fine
would be rescinded or reduced if France broke
 its contract with Russia to supply 2 helicopter
 carriers.  Other such moves against European
 businesses are in the works. The purpose is
to intimidate European businesses from
 opposing sanctions against Russia.

Washington's arrogance that Washington
can decide with whom a French bank can
do business is astonishing.  It is even more
astonishing that France and the bank would
 accept such arrogance and infringements
France's sovereignty.

 France's acceptance of Washington's hegemony
 shows that one risk in Putin's bet is that the bet
 assumes that European business interests can
 prevail over Washington's strategic interests. 

Another risk in Putin's bet is that by standing down
 and tolerating Washington's slaughter of civilians,
 Putin is becoming complicit in Washington's crimes
 against humanity. The longer the slaughter goes on,
 the more complicit Russia's government becomes.

 Moreover, the passage of time allows Kiev to
 increase its forces and NATO to supply these
 forces with more deadly weapons. A Russian
 intervention, which previously would have met
 with easy success, becomes more costly and
more drawn out as Kiev's forces increase.

Washington's puppet in Kiev makes it clear
--- that he is not going to accommodate any
Russian interests or any opposition of the
provinces, to the radical anti-
Russian policies
of Washington's stooge

 As Washington acknowledges no responsibility
 whatsoever for the situation, how long can Putin
 wait for Merkel or Hollande to break ranks with

Putin's alternative is to come to the defense of the
 Ukrainians who are being attacked. Putin could
 accept the requests of the rebellious provinces
 to rejoin Russia, as he did with Crimea,  declare
  Washington's stooge, Petro Poroshenko, to be a
war criminal and issue a warrant for his arrest,
and send in the Russian military to face down
 the forces sent by Kiev.

Outside the West, this would establish Putin as
 a defender of human rights. Inside the West, it
would make it completely clear to Washington's
 European vassals that the consequence of their
 alignment with Washington is that they will be
drawn into a war with Russia and, likely, also
with China.  Europeans have nothing to gain
 from these wars.

Sooner than later Putin needs to realize that
 his reasonableness is not reciprocated by
 Washington. Washington is taking advantage
 of Putin's reasonableness, and Washington
is pushing Russia harder. 

Putin has done what he can to avoid conflict.
 Now he needs to do the right thing, as he did
 in Georgia and Crimea.

Paul Craig Roberts

Donetsk residents call on Russia

Guilt by insinuation: How
American propaganda works

By Paul Craig Roberts

Why hasn't Washington joined Russian President
 Putin in calling for an objective, non-politicized
 international investigation by experts of the
 case of the Malaysian jetliner? 

The Russian government continues to release facts,
 including satellite photos showing the presence of
 Ukrainian Buk anti-aircraft missiles in locations from
 which the airliner could have been brought down by
 the missile system, and documentation that a
 Ukrainian SU-25 fighter jet rapidly approached the
 Malaysian airliner prior to its downing.

The head of the Operations Directorate of Russian
 military headquarters said at a Moscow press
 conference on July 21st, that the presence of the
 Ukrainian military jet is confirmed by the Rostov
 monitoring centre.

The Russian Defense Ministry pointed out that, at
the moment of destruction of MH-17 an American
 satellite was flying over the area. The Russian
 government urges Washington to make available
 the photos and data captured by the satellite.

President Putin has repeatedly stressed that
the investigation of MH-17, requires "a fully
 representative group of experts to be
working at the site under the guidance of
 the International Civil Aviation Organization

  Putin's call for an independent expert examination
 by ICAO does not sound like a person with anything
 to hide.

Turning to Washington Putin stated: "In the
 meantime, no one (not even the "exceptional
 nation") has the right to use this tragedy to
 achieve their narrowly selfish political goals." 

Putin reminded Washington: "We repeatedly
 called upon all conflicting sides to stop the
 bloodshed immediately and to sit down at
 the negotiating table. I can say with
 confidence that if military operations
 were not resumed [by Kiev] on June 28
 in eastern Ukraine, this tragedy would
not have happened."

What is the American response?

Lies and insinuations.

On July 20, the US Secretary of State, John
Kerry confirmed that pro-Russian separatists
were involved in the downing of the Malaysian
airliner and said that itwas "pretty clear" that
 Russia was involved. Here are Kerry's words:

 "It's pretty clear that this is a system that
was transferred from Russia into the hands
 of separatists. We know with confidence,
with confidence, that the Ukrainians did not
 have such a system anywhere near the
vicinity at that point and time, so it obviously
 points a very clear finger at the separatists."

Kerry's statement is just another of the endless
 lies told by US secretaries of state in the 21st
 century.  Who can forget Colin Powell's package
of lies delivered to the UN about Saddam
Hussein's "weapons of mass destruction"
or Kerry's lie repeated endlessly that Assad
"used chemical weapons against his own
people" or the endless lies about "Iranian

Remember that Kerry on a number of occasions
 stated that the US had proof that Assad crossed
 the "red line" by using chemical weapons.

 However, Kerry was never able to back up
 his statements with evidence.  The US had
 no evidence to give the British prime minister
whose effort to have Parliament approve
Britain's participation with Washington in a
 military attack on Syria was voted down.
 Parliament told the prime minister, "no
evidence, no war."

Again here is Kerry declaring "confidence"
 in statements that are directly contradicted
 by the Russian satellite photos and endless
 eye witnesses on the ground. 

Why doesn't Washington release its photos
 from its satellite?

The answer is for the same reason that Washington
 will not release all the videos it confiscated and
 that it claims prove that a hijacked 9/11 airliner
hit the Pentagon.  The videos do not support
 Washington's claim, and the US satellite
photos do not support Kerry's claim.

The UN weapons inspectors on the ground in
Iraq reported that Iraq had no weapons of
mass destruction.  However, the fact did not
 support Washington's propaganda and was
 ignored. Washington started a highly
destructive war, based on nothing but
Washington's intentional lie.

The International Atomic Energy Commission's
 inspectors on the ground in Iran and all 16 US
 intelligence agencies reported that Iran had
no nuclear weapons program. However, the
was inconsistent with Washington's
and was ignored by both the US
and the presstitute media.

We are witnessing the same thing right
now with the assertions, in the absence
 of evidence, that Russia is responsible
 for the downing of the Malaysian airliner.

Not every member of the US government
is as reckless as Kerry and John McCain.
In place of direct lies, many US officials
 use insinuations.

US Senator Diane Feinstein is the perfect
 example.  Interviewed on the presstitute
 TV station CNN, Feinstein said: "The issue
 is where is Putin?  I would say, 'Putin, you
 have to man up. You should talk to the
 world. You should say, if this is a mistake,
 which I hope it was, say it.'"

Putin has been talking to the world nonstop,
 calling for an expert non-politicized
and Feinstein is asking Putin
why he is hiding
behind silence.  We know
you did it, Feinstein
insinuates, so just tell
us whether you meant
to, or whether it
was an accident.

The way the entire Western news cycle was
 orchestrated with blame instantly being placed
 on Russia long in advance of real information
 suggests that the downing of the airliner was
 a Washington operation.  It is, of course,
 possible that the well-trained presstitute media
 needed no orchestration from Washington in
 order to lay the blame on Russia.  On the other
 hand, some of the news performances seem too
 scripted not to have been prepared in advance. 

We also have the advanced preparation of the
 youtube video that purports to show a Russian
 general and Ukrainian separatists discussing
 having mistakenly downed a civilian airliner.

 As I pointed out earlier, this video is twice damned.
  It was ready in advance and, by implicating the
 Russian military, it overlooked that the Russian
 military can tell the difference between a civilian
 airliner and a military airplane. The existence of
 the video itself implies that there was a plot to
 down the airliner and blame Russia.

I have seen reports that the Russian anti-aircraft
 missile system, as a safety device, is capable
 of contacting aircraft transponders in order to
 verify the type of aircraft.  If the reports are
correct and if the transponders from MH-17
 are found, they might record the contact.

I have seen reports that Ukrainian air control
 changed the route of MH-17 and directed it to
 fly over the conflict area.  The transponders
 should also indicate whetherthis is correct.

  If so, there clearly is at least circumstantial
 evidence that this was anintentional act on
 the part of Kiev, an act which would have
 required Washington's blessing.

There are other reports that there is a divergence
 between the Ukrainian military and the unofficial
 militias formed by the right-wing Ukrainian
 extremists who apparently were the first to attack
 the separatists.  It is possible that Washington
 used the extremists to plot the airliner's destruction
 in order to blame Russia and use the accusations
 to pressure the EU to go along with Washington's
 unilateral sanctions against Russia. We do know
that Washington is desperate to break up the
 growing economic and political ties between
 Russia and Europe. 

If it was a plot to down an airliner, any safety device
 on the missile system could have been turned off,
so as to give no warning, or leave any telltale sign.
  That could be the reason a Ukrainian fighter was
 sent to inspect the airliner.  Possibly the real
 target was Putin's airliner and incompetence in
 implementing the plot resulted in the destruction
of a civilian airliner.

As there are a number of possible explanations,
let's keep open minds and resist Washington's
 propaganda until facts and evidence are in.

 At the very least, Washington is guilty of using
 the incident to blame Russia in advance of the
 evidence. All Washington has shown us so far
 is accusations and insinuations.  If that is all
 Washington continues to show us, we will
know where the blame resides.

In the meantime, remember the story of the boy
 who cried "wolf!"  He lied so many times that
 when the wolf did come, no one believed him.
 Will this be Washington's ultimate fate?

Instead of declaring war on Iraq, Afghanistan,
 Libya, Somalia, and Syria, why did Washington
 hide behind lies?  If Washington wants war with
 Iran, Russia, and China, why not simply declare

The reason that the US Constitution requires war
 to begin with a declaration of war by Congress is
 to prevent the executive branch from orchestrating
 wars, in order to further hidden agendas.

 By abdicating its constitutional responsibility, the
 US Congress is complicit in the executive branch's
 war crimes.  By approving Israel's premeditated
 murder of Palestinians, the US government is
 complicit in Israel's war crimes.

Ask yourself this question: Would the world be
 a safer place, with less death, destruction and
 displaced peoples, and more truth and justice,
 if the United States and Israel did not exist? 

Paul Craig Roberts


Does Russia have a future?
By Paul Craig Roberts

The Russian government has finally realized that
 it has no Western “partners,” and is complaining
 bitterly about the propagandistic lies and
 disinformation issued without any evidence
 whatsoever against the Russian government
 by Washington, its European vassals, and
press-titute media.

Perhaps the Russian government thought
that only Iraq, Libya, Syria, China, and Edward
 Snowden would be subjected to Washington’s
lies and demonization.

It was obvious enough that Russia would be next.

The Russian government and Europe need to look
 beyond Washington’s propaganda, because the
 reality is much worse.

NATO commander General Breedlove and Senate
 bill 2277 clearly indicate that Washington is
 organizing itself and Europe for war on Russia.

Europe is reluctant to agree with Washington to
 put Ukraine in NATO. Europeans understand that
 if Washington or its stooges in Kiev cause a war
with Russia, Europe will be the first casualty.

Washington finds its vassals’ noncompliance
 tiresome. Remember Assistant Secretary of
State Victoria Nuland’s “fuck the EU.” And
 that is just what Washington is about to do.

The US Senate’s Russian Aggression Prevention
 Act, about which I reported in my previous column,
does even more mischief than I reported. If the bill
 passes, which it likely will, Washington becomes
empowered to bypass NATO and to grant the status
 of “allied nation” to Ukraine independently of NATO
 membership. By so doing, Washington can send
 troops to Ukraine and thereby commit NATO to a
war with Russia.

Notice how quickly Washington escalated the
 orchestrated Ukrainian “crisis”  -  without any
 evidence - into “Russian aggression.” Overnight
 we have the NATO commander and US senators
 taking actions against “Russian aggression”, of
which no one has seen any evidence.

With Iraq, Libya, and Syria, Washington learned
 that Washington could act on the basis of bald-
faced lies. No one, not Great Britain, not France,
not Germany, not Italy, not the Netherlands, not
 Canada, not Australia, not Mexico, not New
Zealand, not Israel, nor Japan, nor S. Korea,
nor Taiwan, nor (substitute your selection)
stepped forward to hold the US accountable
 for its blatant lies and war crimes.

The UN even accepted the package of blatant
and obviously transparent lies that Colin Powell
 delivered to the UN. Everything Powell said had
 already been refuted by the UN’s own weapons
 inspectors. Yet the UN pussies gave the go-ahead
 for a devastating war.

The only conclusion is that all the whores were
paid off. Whores can always count on Washington
 paying them off. For money, the whores are selling
 out civilization to Washington’s war, which likely
will be nuclear and terminate life on earth. The
 whores’ money will incinerate with them.

It is hardly surprising that Washington now targets
 Russia. The world has given Washington carte
 blanche to do as it pleases. We have now had three
 administrations of US war criminals welcomed and
 honored wherever the war criminals go. The other
governments in the world continue to desire
 invitations to the White House as indications of
their worth. To be received by war criminals has
 become the highest honor.

Even the president of China comes to Washington
 to receive acceptance by the Evil Empire.

The world did not notice Washington’s war crimes
 against Serbia and didn’t puke when Washington
 then put the Serbian president, who had tried to
 prevent his country from being torn apart by
 Washington, on trial as a war criminal.

The world has made no effort to hold Washington
 responsible for its destruction of Iraq, Afghanistan,
 Libya, and now Syria and Gaza. The world has not
 demanded that Washington stop murdering people
 in Pakistan and Yemen, countries with which
 Washington is not at war. The world looks the other
 way as Washington creates the US Africa Command.
The world looks the other way as Washington sends
 deadly weapons to Israel, with which to murder
 women and children in the Gaza Ghetto. Washington
 passes Senate and House Resolutions cheering on
 the Israeli murder of Palestinians.

Washington is accustomed to its free pass,
granted by the world, to murder and to lie,
and now is using it against Russia.

Russian President Putin’s bet that by responding
 to Washington’s aggression in Ukraine in an
 unprovocative and reasonable manner, would
 demonstrate to Europe that Russia was not the
 source of the problem --- has not paid off.

European countries are captive nations. They
are incapable of thinking and acting for themselves.
 They bend to Washington’s will. Essentially, Europe
 is a nonentity that follows Washington’s orders.

If the Russian government hopes to prevent war
with Washington, which is likely to be the final
war for life on earth, the Russian government
needs to act now and end the problem in Ukraine
 by accepting the separatist provinces’ request to
 be reunited with Russia. Once S.2277 passes,
 Russia cannot retrieve the situation without
 confronting militarily the US, because Ukraine
will have been declared an American ally.

Putin’s bet was reasonable and responsible,
 but Europe has failed him. If Putin does not
use Russian power to bring an end to the p
roblem with which Washington has presented
him in Ukraine while he still can, Washington’s
 next step will be to unleash its hundreds of
NGOs inside Russia to denounce Putin as a
traitor for abandoning the Russian populations
 in the former Russian provinces that Soviet
 leaders thoughtlessly attached to Ukraine.

The problem with being a leader is that you
inherit festering problems left by previous
 leaders. Putin has the problems bequeathed
by Yeltsin. Yeltsin was a disaster for Russia.
 Yeltsin was Washington’s puppet. It is not
certain that Russia will survive Yeltsin’s

If Washington has its way, Russia will survive
 only as an American puppet state.

In a previous column I described the article in
 Foreign Affairs, the journal of the Washington foreign
 policy community, that makes a case that the US
 has such strategic advantage over Russia at this
 time that a “window of opportunity” exists for the
US to remove Russia as a restraint on US hegemony
--- with a preemptive nuclear attack.

It is almost certain that Obama is being told that
 President John F. Kennedy had this window of
 opportunity and did not use it, and that Obama
must not let the opportunity pass a second time.

As Steven Starr explained in a guest column,
there are no winners of nuclear war. Even if the
 US escapes retaliatory strikes, everyone will
die, regardless.

The view in Washington of the neoconservatives,
who control the Obama regime, is that nuclear
war is winnable. No expert opinion supports
 their assumption, but the neocons, not the
experts, are in power.

The American people are out to lunch. They have
 no comprehension of their likely fate. Americans
 are an uninformed people distracted by their
 mounting personal and financial problems.
 If Europeans are aware, they have decided to
live for the moment, on Washington’s money.

What life is faced with is a drive for hegemony
on the part of Washington and ignorant
unconcern on the part of the rest of the world.

Americans, worked into a lather about Washington’s
 unfunded liabilities and the viability of their future
 Social Security pension, won’t be alive to collect it.


World doomed by Western insouciance
By Paul Craig Roberts

European governments and the Western media
 have put the world at risk by enabling the US’s
 propaganda and aggression against Russia.

Washington has succeeded in using transparent
 lies to demonize Russia as a dangerous aggressive
 country led by a new Hitler or a new Stalin, just as
 Washington sought to vilify Assad in Syria, Chavez
in Venezuela, and, of course, Iran.

The real demons – Clinton, Bush, Obama – are “the
 exceptional and indispensable people” above the
 reach of demonization. Their horrific real crimes
go unnoticed, while fictitious crimes are attributed
 to other people and countries.

The reason that Washington demonizes a leader and
 a country is to permit the creation of circumstances
 that Washington can use to act with force against
 a leader and a country.

Washington’s incessant lies alleging “Russian
 aggression” have created Russian aggression out
 of thin air. John Kerry and the State Department’s
 Marie Harf issue new lies daily, but never any
 supporting evidence. With the stage set, the US
 Senate, the NATO commander and the Chairman
 of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff are busy at work
 energizing the wheels of war.

Senate bill 2277 provides for beefing up forces on
 Russia’s borders and for elevating Ukraine’s status
 to “ally of the US” so that US troops can assist the
 war against “terrorists” in Ukraine.  

NATO commander Breedlove is preparing his plans
 for stockpiling war material on Russia’s borders so
 that US/NATO troops can more quickly strike Russia.

Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, General
Martin Dempsey, is at work preparing American
 opinion for the upcoming war.

On July 24, Dempsey told Aspen Security Forum,
 a high level group where US opinion is formed,
Putin’s aggression in Ukraine is comparable
Stalin’s invasion of Poland in 1939 and that
Russian threat was not limited to Ukraine
Eastern Europe, but was global.

The intellects in the Aspen Forum did not break
 out laughing, when Dempsey told them that
Russia’s (alleged but unproven) involvement in
 Ukraine was the first time since 1939 that a
country made a conscious decision to use its
military force inside another sovereign nation
 to achieve its objectives.

 No one asked Dempsey what Washington has
been doing during the last three presidential
 regimes: Clinton in Serbia, Bush and Obama in
 Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Pakistan and
Obama in Libya and Syria.

Here are Dempsey’s words: “You’ve got a Russian
 government that has made a conscious decision to
 use its military force inside another sovereign nation
 to achieve its objectives. It’s the first time since
 1939 or so that that’s been the case. They clearly
 are on a path to assert themselves differently not
 just in Eastern Europe, but Europe in the main,
and towards the United States.”

Washington’s view that the world is its oyster is
ingrained that neither Dempsey nor his upper
 echelon audience at the Aspen Forum noticed the
 absurdity of his statement. Washington and the
 brainwashed US population take if for granted that
 the “exceptional, indispensable nation” isn't limited
 in its actions by the sovereignty of other countries.

Washington takes for granted that US law prevails
 in other countries over the countries’ own laws –
just ask France or Switzerland, that Washington
 can tell foreign financial institutions and
 corporations with whom they can do business
and with whom they cannot – just ask every
country and company prevented from doing
business with Iran, that Washington can invade
 any country whose leader Washington can
demonize & overthrow – just ask Iraq, Honduras,
 Libya, Serbia, and so forth, and that Washington
 can conduct military operations against peoples
 in foreign countries, such as Pakistan and Yemen,
 with which Washington is not at war.

All of this is possible, because Washington has
 claimed the title from Israel of being “God’s Chosen
 People.” Of course, Israel’s loss of the title has not
 stopped Israel from acting in the same way.

Washington has put in motion the wheels of war.
Once the wheels of war begin to turn, momentum
 carries them forward. The foolish, indeed utterly
 stupid, governments and media in Europe seem
 unaware of Washington’s orchestration of their
 future or lack thereof, or they are indifferent to it.

 They are dooming themselves and all of humanity
 by their insouciance.

Readers who cannot tolerate problems without
 solutions always request solutions. OK, here is
 the solution:

The only possibility of avoiding war is that Putin
take his case to the UN. If Washington can send
 Colin Powell to the UN unarmed with any truth to
 make Washington’s case for war against Iraq,
Putin should be able to take his case to the UN
 against Washington’s war against Russia.

The case that the emperor has no clothes is
 an easy one to make.

Unlike Washington, Putin is willing to share the
 evidence that Russia has about who is doing
what in Ukraine. It is a simple matter to establish
 that Washington organized a coup that overthrew
 an elected government, supports violence against
 those who object to the coup, and has turned a
deaf ear to Russia’s repeated pleas for Kiev and
 the separatists to negotiate their differences.

Putin should make it clear to the world that
 Washington continues with provocative military
 steps against Russia, with force buildups on
Russia’s borders and calls for more buildups,
with S.2277 which reads like a US preparation
 for war, with provocative actions & accusations
by top US generals and government officials
 against Russia, and with efforts to isolate Russia
 and to inflict economic and political injury
 on Russia.

Putin should make it clear to the world that there
 is a limit to provocations that Russia can accept
and that Russia believes that Russia is
in danger
of a preemptive nuclear attack by

 Putin can describe Washington’s withdrawal from
 the ABM treaty, the construction of ABM bases on
 Russia’s borders, and the announced change in
 Washington’s war doctrine that elevates US nuclear
 forces from a retaliatory role to a preemptive first
 strike role. These actions are clearly directed at
 Russia (and China–wake up China! You are next!).

Putin must state clearly that the likely consequence
 of the world continuing to enable Washington’s lies
 & aggression will be not merely another disastrous
 war, but the termination of life.

The governments of the world, especially
 Washington’s vassals in Europe, Canada,
Australia, and Japan, need to be told that it
their responsibility to stop their enabling
Washington’s aggression or to accept
responsibility for World War III.

At least we could all have the enjoyment of
watching the arrogant Samantha Powers and
 the craven British lapdog rise and walk out of
 the UN proceedings. There is no doubt what-
soever that Washington is unable to answer
 the charges.

Here again is the Wolfowitz Doctrine that controls
US foreign policy and that condemns Planet Earth
 to death:

“Our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence
of a new rival, either on the territory of the former
 Soviet Union or elsewhere, that posses a threat on
 the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union.

 “This is a dominant consideration underlying the
new regional defense strategy and requires that
 we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from
 dominating a region whose resources would,
 under consolidated control, be sufficient to
 generate global power.”

A hostile power is defined as any country that
 is not a Washington vassal.

The Wolfowitz Doctrine commits the United States,
 its peoples, Washington’s gullible EU allies and
 those peoples, to war with Russia and China.

The destruction of the world is what the idiot EU
 governments and the presstitute Western media
 are fostering by their enablement of Washington’s
 lies and aggression.



Two thirds of Russians say in the latest
poll that they are against sending troops
to Ukraine, despite the latest US' moves.


 The European Union is expanding anti-Russian
 sanctions against its own interests under tough
 pressure from the US in favour of the American
 military-industrial complex, say experts.

“This week, the EU is to expand and toughen
anti-Russian measures. This is obviously an
 operation staged by Washington that is using
 the Malaysian airliner downed in Ukraine with
 most of its passengers being Europeans, as
an excuse to defeat Russia,” says the director
 of the strategic analysis & developments dept,
 at the sanctioned Vnesheconombank, Vladimir

“The unprecedented propaganda campaign
 on Russia has turned the Old World's public
against Russia, to such an extent that its
politicians are afraid of looking indecisive
and losing voters' support, to blindly take
 their cue from the US”

“The EU has no chance to withstand US pressure
 over anti-Russian measures,” the expert explains:
 “Washington overtly interferes with Russian-EU gas
 supply talks & blackmails France over its contract
 on helicopter carrier Mistral supplies to Russia.

“The US is flagrantly pursuing its own policy in
and is appointing its own people to
key posts in the EU.”

“EU countries have a deficit of strong leaders
 now, and European governments are weak.
the EU's bureaucratic machine is
proving to be incompetent
on issues of global
politics and economics and
totally dependent
on the US will,” Andrianov says.

 “The fact that even German Chancellor Angela
 Merkel suddenly switched tactics after several
 months of a moderate approach shows the EU
 leaders’ dependence on the US.

 “Washington keeps files on all prominent politicians.
 It certainly has blackmail evidence against Merkel.
 It’s no coincidence that her cellphone was bugged
by US special services. For this reason, the German
 chancellor yielded to pressure from Washington.”

“All US foreign policy starting from Vietnam, has
been tailored to its military's needs. Amid global
 competition, the US - as the world’s gendarme -
 cannot bear the thought that Russia remains the
only major geopolitical opponent which it can't
control,” the expert says.

Washington aims to arm the Ukrainian army with
 modern weapons and equipment, and pull Russia
 into a confrontation with Ukraine,  Mr Andrianov

“For this purpose, the US Congress plans to
 recognise Ukraine as a major non-NATO ally
 and provide it with direct military aid.

 “The S.2277 - Russian Aggression Prevention Act
 of 2014 - has passed two readings in the US.
These moves are clearly designed to serve the
 interests of the US military-industrial complex
 in order to kindle the fire in Europe and line US
 pockets on weapon supplies to the crisis zone,”
Andrianov says.

“The scenario of pulling Russia into armed conflict
 with Ukraine is so dangerous that it's unacceptable,”
the dean of the Higher School of Economics Faculty
 for World Economy and International Affairs, Sergey
 Karaganov says.

 “But the EU sanctions already announced, and
those on the table, mean that the large-scale
US's anti-Russian campaign, caused by the
Boeing's downing in Ukraine, is bearing fruit.”

“US pressure for the EU to adopt anti-Russian
 sanctions aims at splitting Europe, weakening
 Germany and inflicting as much grave damage
 as possible on Russia, to deprive the country
of its power in the world,” the expert says.

“Europe is blindly obeying the US by imposing
 anti-Russian sanctions, because EU welfare
directly relies on the US in financial terms,
Deputy Director of Russia's Academy of
Institute for the USA and Canadian
Studies, Major
General Pavel Zolotarev says.

“In terms of its security policy, the EU is peace-
ful under the US umbrella. Washington bears the
 lion’s share of NATO spending, enabling the EU
 countries to reduce defense spending to 2% of
their gross domestic product.”

“EU countries lay out 6-7 times more for education
 and healthcare than defense,” the analyst adds.

 “Russia cannot afford such a budget distribution,
 while EU countries can, thanks to the US. Hence
 their obedience to Washington.”

The video above shows a mob of about
50 men in Kiev, attacking one of the
few news outlets left which Kiev does
not control. A legal case has dragged
on for months, threatening its closure.

The US and UK say that the US-backed
Kiev coup, is a "people's revolution"...

we say it's fascism.




Cuban leader Raul Castro says in a televised
speech on Wednesday, that Cuba and the
United States have agreed "to restore" ties,
ending 50 years of frosty bilateral relations.

Pope Francis unexpected hero
of US-Cuba relations breakthrough

Pope Francis has congratulated both the US
 and Cuba on restoring relations. The Vatican
 and Canada both played a significant role in
talks, which broke 50 years of cold war-
sanctions imposed on the independent

President Obama comments that "sanctions
did not work".

 At this point, it is hard to predict how soon the
 US Congress may lift the trading and economic
 embargo from Cuba, but the first steps towards
 cancelling visas are being taken already,” the
 international research director at the Institute
 of Modern Development, Sergey Kulik, states.

“It's very unlikely that the restoration of diplomatic
 relations between the United States & Cuba was
 prompted only by the awareness that sanctions
are ineffective, contrary to what Obama said.

“Washington never makes decisions on the basis
 of just one reason, and always, on several ones,
 first and foremost, geopolitical — for the sake of
 tightening its grip on the world,” the analyst says.


Yemen Shia fighters take full control
of strategic port city

Yemen’s Shia Houthi movement’s Ansarullah
fighters have taken full control of the Yemen’s
 second-largest port city of Hudaydah, on the
Red Sea.

According to reports, the Ansarullah fighters
managed to gain full control of the strategic
 port of Hudaydah on Wednesday (17th Dec),
which they had entered earlier, in October.

The Yemeni army soldiers in Hudaydah gave
 no resistance, as the Shia fighters tightened
 their grip on the strategic port.

The Ansarullah revolutionaries also captured
several government offices, including the
state-owned SAFER oil and gas company, in
the Yemeni capital, Sana’a, on Wednesday.

Ansarullah’s gains now pose a serious challenge
 to the authority of the Yemen-based al-Qaeda in
the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), which has for long
 destabilized the impoverished Arab country.

In the past months, al-Qaeda militants have
 frequently attacked Yemen’s security forces
 and been locked in deadly battles with Shia
 Ansarullah fighters.

Yemen’s central government has so far failed
to confront the terrorist threats. Ansarullah
fighters, however, have intervened to fill the
 vacuum and driven al-Qaeda militants out
of many areas in the country.

The Shia revolutionaries also played a major
role in ousting Yemen’s former dictator, Ali
Abdullah Saleh, in 2012.


Syrian Opposition Parties
Reject Foreign Intervention 
 Various Syrian opposition parties call for an end
to economic sanctions against Syria and a stop
to the flow of radicals and mercenaries to their
 country, local television channels broadcast.

During a meeting with Ramzy Ezzedine Ramzy,
the deputy of the UN special envoy for Syria,
 Staffan De Mistura, and the secretary general
 of the National Development Party, Inas al
 Hammal, he said that those conditions are
 needed to promote inter-Syrian talks.

For his part, Parwen Ibrahim, leader of the
National Youth for Justice and Development
Party, urged the United Nations to condemn
 the constant Israeli violations of Syrian

Meanwhile, Sheikh Nawaf Abdul Aziz Trad Al
 Milhim, from the People's Party, highlighted
 the importance of dialogue, and the UN's
 proposals for ending combat in Aleppo city.

During a meeting with de Mistura last month,
 president Bashar al Assad promised to study
 the initiative and highlighted the importance
 of Aleppo, considered to be Syria's economic
 heart, before the conflict.

A Syrian political opposition party says plans
 for "frozen zones" in Aleppo must be coupled
with a political solution and expand to cover
other Syrian cities.

"The plan put forward by the UN special envoy
 Staffan de Mistura, must be coupled with a
political solution and expanded to cover the
areas in southern and central Syria," says
Safwan Akkasheh, a leading member of
the opposition 'National Coordination Body'

He says his group met earlier in the day with
 Ramzi Ezz el-Deen, deputy of de Mistura, who
 flew in last Saturday for a meeting with Syrian
 officials and opposition forces to discuss de
Mistura's plans.

The special envoy has proposed a plan to freeze
 battles between government troops and "rebels"
 in Aleppo, as a prelude to a broader pacification
 across the war-torn country.

The Syrian government says the plan is "worth
 studying" but government officials say that they
 are waiting for more details about the plan from
 Mistura, who's gathering regional & international
 support for his plan, which is basically still a
series of ideas.

Meanwhile, Akkasheh says the NCB discussed
 Mistura's plan in detail, adding that his group,
 the largest domestically-based opposition group,
 backs any step that might alleviate the suffering
 and end the destruction.

The opposition figure, though, expresses concern
that the plan, if kept limited to Aleppo, could push
the key Syrian province which borders Turkey, to
become an autonomous area.

 He stresses that this idea is of great concern
 to a majority of all the political forces in Syria.

Akkasheh says his group also agrees on the
presence of international observers to monitor
 Aleppo's "frozen battles" --- if the cessation of
violence is ever accepted by the warring sides.

Syrian troops have recently been racing against
 time to consolidate their positions in Aleppo and
 further tighten the siege on various rebel and
 extremist groups in rebel-held areas in Aleppo,
 while the plan is being discussed.

Local media and activists say Syrian troops are
 advancing on the northeastern part of Aleppo
 and inching closer to laying siege to the rebel-
held areas, cutting their key supply lines from
 neighboring Turkey.


Russia Is Concerned about
   Western Lethal Aid to Ukraine    
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov states
 Russia''s concern about the possible supply of
weapons to Ukraine by the West, and calls on
those countries to foster political dialogue in

"I know that over the past few weeks, the debate
 on the so-called supplies of "lethal weapons" to
 Kiev has intensified in a worrying way, he says,
 adding that NATO planes have already sent the
 weapons to Ukraine secretly.

The deputy minister points out that if the West
 is interested in solving the Ukrainian crisis, it
should promote the start of inclusive dialogue
 among all parties politically involved, and the
 adoption of constitutional reform, the First
channel of Russian television reports.

Victoria Kushnir, a spokesperson for the Ministry
 of Defense of Ukraine, confirms that, thanks to
 the West's assistance, despite the crisis that
keeps the country on the verge of bankruptcy,
 the Armed Forces continue receiving new and
better military technology.


Israel suffers series of
diplomatic setbacks in Europe

An EU court orders the removal of Hamas from the
 list of terror groups and the European Parliament
 has voted to recognise a Palestinian state.


Ban Ki Moon Calls to Strengthen
Cooperation with Africa
 UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon calls for a
strengthening of United Nations links with Africa
& the mechanisms for integrating that continent
 -- to foster peace and stability.

"The problems in Africa are the problems of everyone
 there and there is a possibility to solve the problems,
only if all parts of the international community work
 as one, Ban Ki Moon said, at a forum centred on the
 links with the African Union.

The diplomat said that there are examples of the
usefulness of joint work with African organizations
to prevent conflicts or try to solve them, but there
still a lot to do, to strengthen such an alliance.

Burkina Faso, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan,
Central African Republic and the Great Lakes
 region, show the importance of cooperation
 in facing the crisis, he added.

Ban Ki Moon said there are many challenges
 to move forward in the search for peace and
stability, and create key scenarios for socio-
economic development.

"We should foster political links with the African
 Union, fix them into a clear strategy, foster the
 peace joint operations and promote a search for
 greater access to financial resources in the
region," he concluded.


Russia Ends Military Drills in Kaliningrad Successfully
  Lt General Andrei Kartapolov,spokesperson for
 the General Staff of the Armed Forces, confirms
 the successful conclusion of the largest military
 drill carried out in Russia''s westernmost region,

According to the military spokesperson, 9,000
 soldiers, 250 tanks and other armored vehicles, 100
 pieces of artillery and multiple rocket launchers, 55
boats and 41 planes participated in the maneuvers.

Kartapolov underlines that the operations, which
 took place from December 5 - 10, involved all kinds
 of troops, including units equipped with Iskander-
M tactical missile systems, artillery, mechanized
 infantry, airborne troops and navy infantry.

The crews of fighters and transport helicopters,
Baltic Sea Fleet troops, demonstrated their
capabilities during the drills, states the source.

Particularly, the pilots and antiaircraft defense
 systems simulated the protection of key military
and state objectives, as well as air support for
other kinds of troops and the neutralization of
ground targets of allegedly hostile groups.

The lieutenant general notes the participation
of intelligence, communications and logistics
experts in the maneuvers. The spokesperson
assures that all forces that participated in the
 military drills have returned to their permanent
 garrisons and routine missions.

The presence of Iskander missiles in these
 operations grants a special importance to the
 maneuvers, as they can destroy targets within
 a radius of up to 500 kilometers and can carry
several warheads, including nuclear warheads.

Russian President Vladimir Putin warns that the
 deployment of this kind of missile in Kaliningrad
 is Russia's response to the Antimissile Defense
(AMD) deployed by the United States in Europe.

Putin has repeatedly stated that the AMD is a
threat against Russia and forces the country
 to react.


ISIL executes 150 Iraqi women
 for not marrying militants

The ISIL terrorist group has executed 150 women
 in the Western Iraqi province of Anbar for refusing
 to marry Takfiri militants.

"At least 150 females, including pregnant women,
 were executed in Fallujah… after they refused to
accept jihad marriage," reads a statement issued
by Iraq’s Ministry of Human Rights.

"Many families were also forced to migrate from
 the province’s northern town of al-Wafa, after
 hundreds of residents received death threats,"
 the statement adds.

According to the Iraqi Ministry of Human Rights,
 many children lost their lives after their families
 took refuge in deserts, in an attempt to escape
 from Takfiri terrorists.

The issue of the so-called Jihad al-Nikah (sexual
 jihad) was first brought up last September when
 it was revealed that a number of Sunni girls had
 travelled to Syria to marry Takfiri militants. This
 is while the real Islam in no way approves of the
 so-called Jihad al-Nikah.

Anbar province, which borders conflict-ravaged
Syria, has been a major stronghold of the ISIL
 Takfiri militants and continues to be largely
 controlled by the terror group.

The ISIL terrorists control large areas across
 northern and western Iraq, as well as in
eastern Syria.

The Takfiri militants have been carrying out
 horrific acts of violence, including public
 decapitations, against Iraqi communities,
 such as Shias, Sunnis, Kurds & Christians.


Five Million People Affected by Crisis
                       in Ukraine, Says UN               
 More than five million people in the Ukrainian
 southeastern region are facing difficulties, as
 a result of the internal conflict, in which
violations of human rights still continue, the
 United Nations warns today.

In its 8th report on the crisis in the country,
the Office of the UN High Commissioner for
Human Rights says the arrival of the winter
season increases the risks of hardship to
 the population.

The report, by a group of experts deployed
on the spot for months, says at least 4,000
Ukrainians have died and 10,332 wounded,
 since the middle of April, during hostilities
 that have Donetsk and Lugansk, in the
 region of Donbass, as the epi-centre.

The document, which covers all November,
 says over 1,300 people have died, despite
 the ceasefire agreed in September in Minsk,
 Belarus, between the Government in Kiev
 and the pro-Russia activists who declared
 the independence of those territories.

The office accuses the sides of committing
 human rights violations, starting with the
 indiscriminate attack against densely
populated areas and the kidnapping of
 people by armed groups and the
 Ukrainian Security Service.

It also regrets and criticizes the lack of
 progress in investigations into violations
 of human rights committed during protests
 in the Maidan, the violence on May 2nd
 in Odessa, and other cases.

The authorities in Moscow repeatedly criticize
UN reports on human rights in Ukraine, for its
 bias in favour of the anti-Russian sectors.


US Government Insists on Studying
                  New Sanctions Against Russia               
A top US official says today the President
 Barack Obama is still considering signing
 legislation which imposes more sanctions
 on Russia and would authorize sending
 "resources" to Ukraine.

The source - quoted by the daily The Hill -
 considers as important that the sanctions
 regime reaches a "delicate balance" that
keeps a united front with allies & partners,
optimizes costs on Russia and minimizes
 the impact on US businesses, international
oil markets and the world economy.

He adds that the present target is to
 maintain that focus.

According to The Hill, Obama is under pressure
 from the Capitol, where this Monday, President
 of the House of Representatives, John Boehner,
vows that the aforementioned legislation will
be approved immediately..

New legislation will penalize Russian weapon
 exports and oil imports, and also send Ukraine
 more "defensive weapons and non-lethal aid".

The US media seems to believe that Obama will
  keep to the same pace as his European allies,
 even if Congress pursues a more radical stand.

Since the beginning of this year, since the
 political conflict in Ukraine exploded, it has
become a crisis between Russia and many
western countries, especially the US.

Russia's authorities denounce those nations
for using Ukraine as a spearhead against their
 country, in particular through the approach of
 NATO forces right up to Russia's borders.

For its part, the US and the European Union
 accuse Russia of supporting the independent
 movement of the Donbass, with its epicentre
 in the cities of Donetsk and Lugansk, and in
 consequence, they have imposed several
economic sanction.

According to the report of a group of experts
 displayed on the ground months ago, hostilities
 on Ukrainian soil have left at least 4,707
Ukrainian dead and 10,332 wounded, since
 mid April.


Nigerian army denounces US officers over soldiers’ mutiny

The Nigerian army says not only has the US done
nothing to help, but has made matters worse with
 its training of the soldiers who recently committed
acts of mutiny.

“Our investigations show that some of the soldiers
who were involved in the mutiny received training in
the US,” a senior Nigerian official told Nigerian daily
Punch, adding that the soldiers’ mutiny in the fight
against Boko Haram Takfiri militants in recent
months was due to the "negative training" they
 received from US trainers.

The official also said, “Another thing Nigerians should
 note is that since the Americans came here purportedly
 to help get the Chibok girls, yet they have not done
 anything. What have they done with all their technology
 and might? Is it not suspicious?”

The official also stressed that it might not be easy to tell
Americans to leave Nigeria as “they are a super power.”

In response, the US Embassy in the Nigerian capital Abuja
announced it hadn't received any request from the Nigerian
government to withdraw its forces from the country.

The forces were allegedly brought into the country to
assist with the rescue of the abducted girls.

On April 14, Boko Haram kidnapped 276 students from
a secondary school in the northeastern town of Chibok,
triggering worldwide outrage. Reports say 57 of the girls
 managed to escape, but 219 are still missing.

Boko Haram, whose name means “Western education
is forbidden,” has claimed responsibility for numerous
 deadly shooting and bombing attacks in various parts
 of Nigeria which have left 10,000+ people dead, so far.


             Syrian Army Closes Siege around Aleppo              
 Syrian Armed Forces closed the siege
around the city of Aleppo, on Sunday.

The Army's progress at Al Jandoul roundabout
threatens the rebel bastions in Al Qweeka and

As part of its offensive, the Syrian Army took
control over the Al Bureij quarry and a timber
 factory in the industrial district.

Meanwhile, the al-Nusra Front, the armed branch
 of Al Qaeda in Syria, resumed its attacks on the
 towns of Nubl and Zahra, about 20 kilometers
 northwest of Aleppo, although the assault was

Both villages have been besieged by the
for more than two years.

Since 2012, the rebels have controlled eastern
 Aleppo, which was Syria's economic heart,
 before the war.

Over the past few months, the Army has taken
 control over several strategic areas of the city
amid violent confrontations.

As a consequence, the corridor that serves as
a way for the Islamic groups to get provisions
from the north, is getting narrower.


Ukraine closes 3 major airports
‘for security reasons’

Three major airports in Ukraine - Kharkov,
Dnepropetrovsk and Zaporozhye - have been
closed indefinitely, Ukraine’s State Air Traffic
 Service says on Monday.

Flights are banned “for security reasons,”
TASS reports, citing the statement. The
 service’s chief, Denis Antonyuk, earlier
said the airports would be closed until
Tuesday morning.


Netanyahu vows to fight Palestinian UN bid

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vows
 to “fend off any attempts to dictate unilateral
 moves,” referring to a Palestinian UN proposal
that sets a timetable for an Israeli withdrawal
to the pre-1967 lines, Haaretz daily says.

The Palestinian leadership on Sunday, said it
plans to submit a resolution to the UN Security
Council setting a two-year deadline for Israel
to end its occupation, AFP reports.

 A draft UN resolution will be presented on
Wednesday, to end the Israeli occupation
 by late 2016, senior Palestine Liberation
 Organization member Wassel Yussef says.


ICC to examine UK troop abuses
during Iraq invasion

The International Criminal Court (ICC) is
 reportedly expected to look into hundreds
 of new cases accusing British soldiers of
Iraqi civilians from 2003 to 2008.

The Hague-based court will review cases
 which detail torture techniques such as
rape, sexual assaults, electrocution, sleep
 deprivation, beating and hooding used by
 UK forces in, Iraq during interrogations in
 the period, the Independent reports today.

The cases, presented by lawyers and human
 right activists, accuse UK troops of abusing
 Iraqi children, women & men aged between
13 and 101.

In one of the cases, an Iraqi policeman died
 after British soldiers “forced his head into a
 bucket of cold water a number of times. He
stopped breathing and died. His wife and
children witnessed the soldiers killing him.”

The Independent report comes ahead of
the publication of an official report into
 allegations that British forces mistreated
 and unlawfully killed Iraqis back in 2004.

The report, to be released on Wednesday,
is likely to fuel more anger against the UK
 government, which reportedly was aware
of the
CIA's torture techniques at the time.

Earlier this week, Angus Robertson MP,
 the defense spokesperson for the Scottish
 National Party (SNP), called for an immediate
 publication of the findings of the long-awaited
 Chilcot inquiry into the UK’s role in the Iraq war.

UK forces participated in the US-led invasion
of Iraq in a blatant violation of international
 law in 2003 under the pretext that the regime
 of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein
 possessed weapons of mass destruction.
No such weapons were ever discovered in Iraq.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the SNP lawmaker
 further accused the UK government of failing
 to act urgently “despite the appalling findings
 of the US Senate report about the inhumane
 treatment of detainees.”

On December 9, the US Senate Intelligence
 Committee released a truncated report on
 the CIA’s so-called Terror War, which detailed
 torture techniques it used during the term of
 former US President George W. Bush.


Ninth Humanitarian Convoy Returns
                to Russia from Donbass               
 The ninth convoy of humanitarian assistance
to the population of the Donbass regions has
now returned to Russia, after delivering over
 1,000 tons of food and basic necessities.

130 Ministry of Emergency Situations lorries
crossed the border today to Russian territory
 across Rostov province, says Rossia 24 TV.

The humanitarian aid, the 9th since mid-August,
 was food, basic staples, building materials for
 the recovery of the infrastructure destroyed by
 bombing, and devices for mobile power plants.

Over 50 vehicles moved the load to Donetsk,
 to alleviate the food shortage in the region,
say representatives of the self-proclaimed
 People's Republic of Donetsk in charge of
 distributing the reconstruction and social
aid to the population... with Russia's help.

Another 80 lorries took the aid to inhabitants
 of the neighboring region of Lugansk, also
 in a very serious humanitarian situation, due
to an economic, financial & energy embargo
 imposed by the Kiev coup authorities and
the consequences of the bombing on cities.

Civil defense sources say another convoy
could arrive by the year's end, to the south
 Ukrainian territories, which have received
over 10,700 tons of humanitarian aid so far.

Meanwhile, various Russian regions are
 sheltering 2,600,000 Ukrainian refugees,
 according to statistics from November,
 issued by the Federal Migration Service.


Syrian Army Beats Off New
                IS Attack on Military Airport               
 After fierce fighting, the Syrian army has
beaten off a new attack by armed elements
of the Islamic State (IS) on Deir Ezzor military
 airport in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor,
 military sources report today.

Members of the terrorist organization tried
to infiltrate the Al-Jafra Quarter in order to
 get closer to the base in Deir Ezzor town,
 but they were defeated and retreated with
 heavy losses, says a spokesperson quoted
 by Masdar News agency.

"IS has been controlling this neighborhood
 for 11 days now. But, it has been unable
 to move forward, the spokesperson states.

Meanwhile, the 104th airborne brigade has
launched a counteroffensive to counter IS
 attacks in the nearby Al-Mariiyyah Quarters
with the support of units of 137th brigade,
 and militias.

The armed forces have recovered several
blocks of buildings in the area.

After the operation, military units control 70%
 of Al-Mariiyyah, while the IS keeps control of
 its southeastern perimeter.


Patients ‘dying of hunger & cold’:
 WHO raises alarm over healthcare in Ukraine

A lack of doctors and medicines in the east
 Ukraine conflict zone, is putting lives at risk,
 says a new World Health Organization report,
 which describes the situation on the ground
as “not just a humanitarian crisis.”

“No child has been vaccinated in the areas
 affected by conflict since September 2014,
 sending polio vaccine coverage down to
 less than 30-40%,” the WHO report reads.

Fears of Ukraine becoming increasingly
 vulnerable to preventable diseases are
 becoming ever more real.

The report comes up with more “daunting”
 statistics in the section titled “Not just a
 humanitarian crisis,” where it talks about
 the first casualties of the botched health-
care system.

“About 40 patients in a mental health
 institution have reportedly died from
 hunger, cold and lack of care,” it says.

The WHO argues that 60 villages situated
 between the front lines of Kiev's troops and
 the rebels, have been left with no medical
 personnel at all.

 It also estimates that Lugansk city has
 only a third of the doctors and nurses
who used to work there.

“Universal health care exists only on paper,”
says Dorit Nitzan, the WHO representative
 for Ukraine. “People have to pay for a large
 amount of health services, buy their own
medicines and there are no set prices for
 these essentials.”

The WHO is trying to assist with mobile
 emergency units made up of one doctor,
two nurses and a logistician.

 The units deal primarily with internally
 displaced people, assess their health
 and try to refer them to any medical
services that still exist.

The Russian charity, Fair Aid, run by a famous
Russian philanthropist, Elizaveta Glinka - better
 known as just Doctor Liza – has been regularly
 transporting children with serious health
 problems, to medical institutions in Moscow.

She has already helped 36 children from Donetsk
 get treatment in the Russian capital. And she was
 accompanying another group of 13 children - 4 of
 them born this year, and others aged from 4 to 12
 years – on Wednesday.

“All the children I bring to Moscow are seriously
 ill - some of them have epilepsy with frequent
 seizures, some have congenital heart disorders,”
 Glinka tells RT’s Roman Kosarev, as the bus is
 about to set off from Donetsk.

Ivan Kravchenko, father of 3-year-old Ilya, who
 has heart disease, says Fair Aid was their last

“Surgeons are nowhere to be found – they’ve all
left,” says Ivan. “The fund found out about us
 and offered assistance...” Everything, from the
 trip to Moscow to the surgery itself, will be
 free of charge for Ilya.

The main challenge is safely passing the Ukraine
 part of the road from Donetsk to Konstantinovka
 on the border with Russia.

“There are checkpoints and the road is completely
 ruined by tanks,” Elizaveta Glinka says. “We'll have
 to hold our children tight - as you can see, we don't
have the prams we need - so we just have to draw
 them close to us and hold them with our hands.”


‘Die-in’ for Eric Garner: Hundreds shut down mall,
 block streets in London protest

76 protesters were arrested after a large crowd
 stormed a London mall, blockaded roads, and
 shouted slogans against police brutality and
 a Staten Island grand jury’s ruling not to indict
 a police officer for Eric Garner's death.

Protests under the “We Can’t Breathe” slogan
 began near Westfield Shopping Centre in London.

Activists came out to support a recent wave of
 demonstrations in the US against the killing of
 African-American Eric Garner by white New
 York Police Officer, Daniel Pantaleo.

As the protest heated up, people occupied and
 shut down the shopping centre. The crowd was
 very lively, shouting slogans, jumping, and
waving banners.

After staging a “die-in” by lying on the floor,
 protesters walked out of the mall with their
 hands in the air, imitating surrendering to
 the police.

Activists then walked onto the streets
 and blockaded a main road in London.
 Some surrounded and stopped a bus.

The bus driver eventually stopped trying
 to make his way through the crowd and
posed for pictures with the activists.

Protesters repeatedly shouted: “What do
 we want? Justice! When do we want it?

After the action, London police surrounded
dozens of protesters and announced they
 would be arrested for “violent disorder.”

“We came out tonight to protest in solidarity
 with those in America, who are protesting
 against police brutality, the unlawful killing
 of Eric Garner...and the unlawful killing of so
 many black people both in America & in the
 UK,” one protester, Joanna, said to RT.
“We are here to say that it has to stop.”

She described how the crowd was
 kettled by police, that activists were
 “manhandled, and one was put in a
chokehold.” She stressed that the
 activists weren't doing anything illegal.

“We’ve been taken off one by one to police
 custody, where we are told that we will be
 charged with violent disorder, which is
 completely outrageous. All we’ve done here
today is show our solidarity,” she said.

Police said that those taken into custody
 broke away from the crowd, assaulted
security staff, and vandalized property.

The US too has witnessed protests across
 the country after a grand jury decision that
 acquitted a white New York police officer
of wrongdoing in the death of Eric Garner,
 a 43-year-old black Staten Island resident,
on July 17th.

The incident was videotaped by a passer-by
 and uploaded online, causing global outrage
 against US' police brutality.

The video shows the officer placing Garner
in an illegal chokehold while a group of other
officers force Garner to the ground. Garner,
who reportedly suffered from asthma, died
after repeatedly saying, “I can’t breathe” –
 a phrase that has become a backbone
 of the protests.

The jury’s decision in the Garner case follows
a Missouri grand jury's ruling not to indict a
white police officer in the death of Michael
 Brown, 18, who was shot multiple times
after a set to with police in Ferguson
Missouri, despite being unarmed.

Tuesday, protesters in Berkeley, California
shut down both sides of the I-80 freeway.


             Pope Francis Calls For Nuclear Disarmament             
 Pope Francis urges states with nuclear
arsenals, to get rid of them.

Nuclear weapons, his statement says, are
 an issue affecting all nations with negative
 consequences for future generations and
the planet.

The Pope says that nuclear deterrence and
 the threats of mutual destruction cannot be
the basis for coexistence and fraternity
among countries and peoples.

Our youngsters deserve a peaceful world,
ordered by values like respect, cooperation,
solidarity and compasion, says the text.

Pope Francis' message urges nations to
 join hands for disarmament and a safer
 world with responsibility, confidence and
 sincere dialogue.

He also condemns states spending on
weapons, which he considers a waste
 of riches and resources.

Piority should be given instead to programs
related to human development in areas like
 education, health and the eradication of
 poverty, says the message.

His statement is released at the
Conference on the Humanitarian
Impact of Nuclear Weapons.


70 Palestinian prisoners start
 hunger strike in Israel jails
Seventy Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails
 have started a hunger strike to protest against
the regime’s policy of solitary confinement, a
 prisoners' group says.

According to a statement by the Palestinian
 Prisoners Society, the protest action started
 on Tuesday in solidarity with detainees being
 held in solitary confinement, some of whom had
 already gone on hunger strike, to stop the policy.

The strikers are calling for an end to solitary
 confinement, and the release of ill prisoners.

Their strike is also in solidarity with Nahar
 al-Saadi, who’s been refusing meals since
 November 20th, to protest at being held in
solitary confinement.

Saadi’s demands include: end his confinement,
 allow family visits, & end solitary confinement
 for all the other prisoners.

Earlier, the group said that two other prisoners,
 Fahd Sawalha & Mahmoud Kleibim, also began
 a hunger strike on Saturday, in protest at their
 solitary confinement.

Reports say over 7,000 Palestinians are now
held in Israeli gaols, many of them without
 charge or trial.

Israel's Prison Service, the agency responsible
 for overseeing gaols, has come under criticism
 from human rights groups, for rampant rights
abuses in gaols.



Israeli forces have killed a senior Palestinian
 official, at a protest rally near the occupied
 West Bank city of Ramallah.

According to Palestinian security sources on
 Wednesday, Ziad Abu Ein, who was in charge
 of  the issue of Israeli settlements within the
 Palestinian Authority, died after Israeli troops
 hit him with the butts of their weapons and
 their helmets, during the rally in the village
of Turmus Ayya.

Abu Ein "was martyred after being beaten in
the chest," says Ahmed Bitawi, the director
of Ramallah hospital.

The president of the Palestinian national unity
 government, Mahmud Abbas, condemns "the
 brutal assault that led to the martyrdom" of
Abu Ein, calling it "a barbaric act that can't
 be tolerated, or accepted."

"We will take the necessary measures after
the results of the investigation into the
 incident," Abbas says.

Tensions have been running high for weeks,
 in the West Bank & East Jerusalem/Al-Quds,
 over the desecration by Israeli troops of
 Al-Aqsa Mosque.


Israel gives demolition orders to Palestinians

Israeli security forces have given demolition orders
 to the residents of homes and commercial stores
 in various parts of the occupied West Bank, as
 part of the regime's settlement expansion project.

Israeli troops invaded Silwan and Jabal al-Mukabir
 neighbourhoods on Tuesday and handed demolition
 orders to a number of Palestinian families, local
sources say.

The residents were told to leave their homes,
 because they were built “illegally.”

Similar orders were handed to the residents
 of Silwan, Jabal al-Mukabir and Sur Baher a
 day earlier.

In November, Human Rights Watch (HRW) urged
 Israel to end the destruction of Palestinian homes,
 saying the practice can amount to a “war crime.”

"Israel should impose an immediate moratorium
 on its policy of demolishing the family homes
of Palestinians," the HRW said.

The decision to destroy more Palestinian homes
 comes, as Tel Aviv continues with its illegal
 settlement expansion on Palestinian land.


Report on the CIA's Use of Torture and Lies
             Above All Expectations               
 The report to the US Senate beats all the
 calculations of those who expected the

The summary of a report released to the
 Senate's investigation of these operations,
 even after being sanitized by the CIA itself,
 is a portrait of depravity that is hard to
comprehend & even harder to stomach,
 says the New York Times.

The report
again raises the question of why
 no one has ever been held accountable for
these seeming crimes - not the top officials
 who set them in motion, the lower-level
 officials who committed the torture, or
those who covered it up, including by
destroying videotapes of the abuse and
by trying to block the Senate Intelligence
Committee's investigation of their acts.

At one point, the report says, the CIA
 assured Congress that the behavior of
the secret jailers and interrogators was
nothing like the horrors the world saw
at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. That's
 the closest the agency seems to have
come to the truth.

 What happened appears to have been
worse than what took place at Abu Ghraib.

The Senate committee's summary says
that the torture by CIA interrogators and
private contractors was "brutal and far
worse" than the agency has admitted to
the public, to Congress and the Justice
 Department, even to the White House.

In that, and other clandestine prisons,
very often no initial attempt was made
to question prisoners in a nonviolent
manner, despite CIA assertions to the

 "Instead, in many cases the most
 aggressive techniques were used
 immediately, in combination and
nonstop," states the summary of
the declassified and heavily
 censored document.

The CIA appears to have used water-
boarding on more than the three
detainees it has acknowledged
subjecting to that form of torture.

But "at no time" did the CIA's torture
program produce intelligence averting
 a terrorism threat, the report says.

According to The Hill, the 'Report on Torture'
 shows a great abbys between the confidence
of the intelligence community and members
 of Congress.

Obama's response? He appoints Brennan to say:

“Our review indicates that interrogations of detainees
 on whom EITs were used, did produce intelligence
 that helped thwart attack plans, capture terrorists,
 and save lives. The intelligence gained from the
 program was critical to our understanding of al-Qaida
 and continues to inform our counterterrorism efforts
 to this day,” Brennan says, defying the report's
main conclusion -- that the torture failed to stop
a single act of terror.


Russia warns against US missile bases in east Europe

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warns that
 Moscow will show an adequate response to the US
 deployment of a costly missile system in Eastern

"We warn that at some stage of the development
of the American missile defense systems, we will
 have to take adequate measures to ensure our
own security," Lavrov says on Tuesday.

"We don't intend to get drawn into an expensive
arms race but we will provide the defensive
 capabilities of our country reliably," he adds.

Russia says US missile plans across the globe
 are a real threat, not only to Russia, but to the
whole world, adding that the missile systems
harm the global strategic balance of forces.

The remarks are made amid escalating tensions
 between the West and Russia over the crisis in

On October 10th, the US military commissioned
 its new missile base in southern Romania amid
 strong opposition by Russia.

The military base will be the first to feature the
Aegis Ashore ballistic missile system and it
will be operational by the end of 2015.

Several hundred American military, civilian and
 contract employees will be deployed to the site.

Another missile base is scheduled to become
 operational in Poland by 2018.

Last year, the Russian Defense Ministry confirmed
 that it deployed several Iskander ballistic missile
 systems, which are capable of carrying nuclear
warheads, in Kaliningrad.

The Iskander ballistic missile has a range of up to
 500 kilometers (about 300 miles) and travels at
hypersonic speed --- making it very difficult to

Their deployment came as a response to the
 development of a US missile system in Europe.


Ukraine military suspends combat operations in east

Ukrainian government troops have suspended their
military operations in the volatile east in preparation
 for a frontline ceasefire.

"The Ukrainian military has suspended all combat
 actions and is ready for the Day of Silence, but
if separatists attack, we will fire in response," a
Ukrainian army spokesman says on Tuesday.

Ukraine and the pro-Russia forces agreed on
 December 9th, to stop fighting across the
eastern conflict zone, under the terms of a
Kremlin-brokered ceasefire.

Also on Tuesday, the Russian Foreign Minister
 Sergei Lavrov says the contact group on Ukraine,
made up of pro-Russia forces fighting the Kiev
 government in the east, and officials from Kiev,
 Moscow and the Organization for Security and
 Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), will meet soon,
 to discuss the implementation of measures to
 uphold the truce in eastern Ukraine.

"In the coming days, a meeting of the contact
 group is planned, in which will be discussed a
 plan: with the aim of a final ceasefire," he says.

Ukraine’s mainly Russian-speaking regions in the
 east have witnessed deadly clashes between
pro-Russia forces and the Ukrainian army since
 Kiev launched military operations to silence
the pro-Moscow protests in mid-April.


   UN: Opium Harvests Soaring in Southeast Asia 
 The UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) says
 in the findings of its annual Southeast Asia Opium
 Survey, that poppy cultivated in Myanmar and
Laos in 2014, reached 772 tons of opium.

Poppy cultivated in Myanmar and Laos in
2014 reached 63,800 hectares, up from
21,600 hectares in 2006.

The latest figure represents a rise in cultivation
for the eighth consecutive year, boosting an
industry estimated to be worth $16bn a year
in Southeast Asia.

Around 76 tons of heroine were made. That drug,
one of the most expensive, has a ready market
 in many other nations.

Myanmar is the world's second largest producer
of opium, with Afganistan now in first place.

The great demand for drugs motivates more
international crime cartels, says the report.

Poppy cultivation in the heroin-producing
 Golden Triangle, the area adjoining Myanmar,
 Laos and Thailand, has nearly tripled since
 2006, and is now a challange to the State
 and the Law, according to a new UN report.

According to Yuri Fedoto, Executive Director
of the UN agency, a lot of poor farmers depend
 on harvesting opium for survival, fuelled by an
 increase in consumption in the West, and made
easy because of the porous borders.


Protests in Front of US Congress
                Demand End to Police Brutality               
 Demonstrations took place in front of the US
 Congress and the Department of Justice on
Monday, demanding an investigation into the
 deaths of Afro Americans at the hands of
police officers in this country.

In the Capitol, a line of police officers stopped
the access of several dozen demonstrators,
 who carried posters and shouted slogans,
 condemning police brutality.

Spokespeople for the demonstrators demanded
 an international investigation into the most recent
crimes against Afro Americans by police officers,
and other public order forces.

The death of Michael Brown, an 18-year-old negro
 adolescent, assassinated by white police officer
 Darren Wilson in the city of Ferguson, Missouri, and
 the strangling of Eric Garner at hands of policeman
 Daniel Pantaleo, in New York, provoked energetic
 protests in over 170 US cities in the last weeks.

Another similar case occurred in Cleveland, Ohio,
 in November, when another police officer fired
his gun and killed a black 12-year-old child.

Other demonstrations took place last Saturday
 in Phoenix, Arizona, after people knew about
the death by two shots in his chest of Afro
American Rumain Brisbon, 34, by a white
police officer.


Lebanon Strengthens Border Security with Syria  
Lebanese armed forces have strengthened their
 security on the border with Syria, after a marked
 increase in attacks by jihadist groups.

The military blocked roads in a mountainous
 area to prevent access by armed groups to the
 regions of Arsal, Wadi Atah and Wadi el Hons,
 located in the eastern Valley of the Bekaa.

In August extremists captured 30 Lebanese
army troops in Arsal and recently killed six
soldiers in an attack in Ras Baaleck area.


Palestinian Prisoners In Israel
               Announce Hunger Strike               
 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails warn -
they will initiate an open hunger strike if
the prison authorities continue to ignore
demands by one of their fellow captives.

The detainees, members of the Islamic Jihad
 movement, are acting in solidarity with Nahar
al-Saadi, who 16 days ago refuses to eat food
after the authorities banned him from receiving
 family and medical visits and started to impose
 arbitrary punishments, constant searches and
 confiscated all his belongings.

Violations of the rights of Palestinian prisoners
 have increased in recent weeks, particularly
 solitary confinement & collective punishment,
 states the director of the Centre for Palestinian
 Prisoners Studies, Rafat Hamdouna.

5,000 plus Palestinians are in Israeli prisons,
  including women and children: hundreds of
 them under an administrative detention law
dating from UK colonial rule, according to
 which, any person may be arrested with-
out the right to legal assistance.


United Kingdom to Open
              military Base in Bahrain               
 UK Foreign Minister Philip Hammond today
 announces that his country is to open a
 permanent military base in Bahrain, aimed
 at reinforcing security in the Persian Gulf.

Hammond's communique was released by
 the local press this weekend, and it says
 that the base is believed to cost over 19
million euros.

The base will be first permanent UK base
 in the Middle East since 1971.

Hammond stresses that the opening of the
 base will extend the presence of the Royal
Navy and reinforce security in the region.

For his part, UK Defense Secretary Michael
Fallon says the new base is a permanent
expansion of the Royal Navy's footprint and
 will enable the UK to send more and larger
ships to "reinforce stability" in the Gulf.


Israeli 'planes carried out 2 air assaults against
 an area of Damascus International Airport, and
 another airport in the town of Dimas, on Sunday.

The Syrian army issued a statement later in the
 day, saying the air attacks by Tel Aviv were
 aimed at helping the ISIL militants operating
 in the Arab country.

Israel has carried out several airstrikes in Syria
 since the start of the conflict there, in 2011.


Israel must explain airstrikes on Syria: Russia

The Russian Foreign Ministry has expressed
 grave concern over Israel’s recent airstrike
 against Syria, calling on Tel Aviv to provide
 answers regarding the military aggression.

“Moscow is deeply worried by this dangerous
 development, the circumstances of which
 demand an explanation,” says Russian Foreign
 Ministry spokesperson Alexander Lukashevich.

Russia has sent a letter to the UN complaining
about Israel’s “aggressive action,” stressing
 that such attacks should not take place in
the future, he states.


Police Kill Another African American
                in Phoenix and Revive Tensions               
 New protests against racial discrimination
and the excessive use of police force have
reignited tensions in the US, after the death
 of another African-American, at the hands
 of the police, in Phoenix.

The US media highlights the death of Rumain
Brisbon, 34, who was shot twice in the chest
by a white police officer in a confusing drug
 trafficking incident on Tuesday.

The death of Brisbon has reignited the passion
 of the African American community in the US,
 which has returned to the streets in protests
over recent court decisions to exempt two
white police officers involved in violent acts
 that have taken the lives of Michael Brown,
Ferguson, and Eric Garner, in New York.

According to the police statement, Rumain
Brisbon was selling drugs when the police
asked him to raise his hands, but he didn't
obey the order.

Brisbon ran to an apartment building where
 a struggle began, during which the suspect
put his hands in his pockets, which, says
 the police report, caused the officer to think
that he had a gun.

The officer, identified only as a white man of
 30 years, shot him twice in the chest, which
caused Brisbon's death.

An inspection of his body showed that he had
 in his pockets a bottle of oxycodone, a drug
that's also used as a narcotic. The vehicle
driven by Brisbon contained marijuana and
 a semi-automatic rifle.

The victim had a long criminal record for
assault and robbery, says the local media.

Marci Kratter, attorney for the family Brisbon,
says witnesses contradict the police version.


Russia Opens Criminal Case
            against Ukrainian Deputies            
 Russian Investigative Committee spokesperson
 Vladimir Markin confirms that the committee has
 opened a criminal case against three Ukrainian
deputies for backing a terrorist act in Chechnya
which left 14 dead, and 28 injured.

"The Investigative Committee of the Russian
 Federation, upon obtaining data on Ukrainian
 deputies Yury Beryoza, Andrei Levus and Igor
Mosiychuk, has opened a criminal case for an
offense under Article 205.2 of Russia's Criminal
Code (public calls for terrorist acts, or the
public approval of terrorism)," Markin says.

The three deputies praised the recent attack
by 11 Islamic terrorists, who attacked a road
patrol station in Grozny, in Russia's southern
Republic of Chechnya, on Thursday.

The attackers then found shelter in the city's
 Press House and a nearby school after killing
 police officers on patrol.

After killing the armed militants, Russian
 security forces found weapons caches
and over 20 bombs at the school.

Investigators believe that a series of attacks
were planned by the extremists in Chenchnya.

Yet Ukrainian deputy and ex chief of Ukraine's
 Security Service, Andriy Levus, says that the
counter-terrorist operation has caused outrage
]within the human rights movement, in Grozny.

Levus justifies the violent attack by the
 extremists, who are trying to create in the
 Caucasus, what the Islamic State is trying
 to create in the Middle East, by claiming
that they're "fighting for respect for their
constitutional rights."


Syria:---  Destroy all Weapons of
                Mass Destruction in Middle east               
 Syria''s Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al Mekdad
 calls the use of any weapons of mass destruction
 "immoral" and demands that the Middle East be
made a nuclear-weapons-free zone.

The nuclear weapons that Israel, the US, UK and
 France persist in having as a deterrence strategy,
can destroy the planet five or six times in a few
minutes, says a report from Al Binaa daily.

The Syrian deputy Foreign minister recalls that
 Syria was one of the first countries to join The
Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear
 Weapons, in 1968.

Mekdad says his Government proposed declaring
 the region free of nuclear arsenals 11 years ago,
 but that Washington and its European allies
 rejected that initiative.

The deputy Foreign minister denounces Tel Aviv's
 big nuclear, biological, and chemical arsenals and
its refusal to destroy them.

He says Syria was unfairly accused of using
 chlorine gas, but then it was later proved that
armed groups were responsible for those

With the complicity of the US, Saudi Arabia,
 and Turkey, rebels used chemical substances
 in order to blame the Damascus authorities.


Kerry warns about release of US torture report:
and asks Finestein to delay the report's release.
US Secretary of State John Kerry has warned
 Senate Intelligence Chair, Dianne Feinstein,
 about the expected release of a report
criticizing US torture techniques.

In a phone call between Kerry & Feinstein
 on Friday, the top US diplomat asked the
senator to delay the release of the report.

State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki
states that he called his former colleague
 and made clear that the timing was, of
course, her choice.

“He wanted to make sure that foreign
policy implications were being appropriately
 factored into the timing,” she said. “These
 include our ongoing efforts against ISIL and
 the safety of Americans being held hostage
around the world.”

The release of the report about the CIA's
 use of torture methods could complicate
Washington’s foreign policy issues.

The US says ISIL terrorist group and other
 groups that hold American hostages would
execute them once the report is released.

At least 3 Americans, including a woman,
 are believed to be held by terrorist groups.

The torture program was launched under
 former president George W. Bush after the
Sept. 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade
 Centre in New York.

The report was scheduled to be released
 next week.


Ansarullah fighters take over Sana'a army academy

Shia fighters of the Ansarullah movement in Yemen
have reportedly seized the military academy in the
capital, Sana'a.

Witnesses say the Shia fighters of the Houthi tribe
 entered the academy on Friday with no resistance
 from the guards and stationed their patrols inside.

"The Houthis are now in control of the academy's
 gates,” said one witness.

Neither the Ansarullah nor the government is
 offering any comment.

The development comes a few days after Defense
 Minister Mahmoud al-Subaihi said that Ansarullah
 fighters might be allowed to join the Yemeni army.

Over the past few months, al-Qaeda militants have
 frequently carried out attacks on Yemen’s security
 forces and have been also locked in deadly battles
 with Ansarullah fighters.

The US and its ally, Saudi Arabia, have backed
the terrorists and armed, paid and trained them.

Yemen’s central government has so far failed to
 confront the terrorist threat. Ansarullah fighters,
 however, have intervened to fill the vacuum and
 driven al-Qaeda militants out of many areas.

In September, Ansarullah revolutionary fighters
 gained control over key government buildings
 in Sana’a, after weeks of demonstrations and a
 4--day battle with army forces loyal to General
Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar, a half-brother of Yemen’s
 former dictator, Ali Abdullah Saleh.

On November the 2nd, Yemen’s main political
parties, including Ansarullah revolutionaries,
 signed a UN-brokered truce, deal in a bid to
end Yemen's crippling political crisis.

On November 9th, Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh
 Mansur Hadi swore in Yemen’s new government,
 despite opposition from Ansarullah revolutionaries.

 They called for the replacement of a number of
 newly-appointed ministers, on the grounds of
 corruption and lacking qualifications.

The Ansarullah movement played a major role
 in the popular uprising which forced Saleh to
step down in 2012, after 33+ years in power.


China's warships more than US by 2020: Report

We all learnt yesterday, that China is
 now larger, economically, than the US.

A report by a US congressional commission on
 China predicts now that China's military will
more warships than the US --- by 2020.

The number of China’s military vessels will
 reach about 351 within six years, The
Washington Post reports.

The US-China Economic & Security Review
 Commission has given its annual report to
the US Congress.

 The US Navy now has 289 deployable battle
 force ships.

The commission demands that Congress
 increase its Pacific fleet by up to 67 ships.

According to the commission, China's
 military spending is $131 billion this year,
almost 12.2% greater than last year.

The US Navy says it is concerned about
military plans.

Last year, the US Department of Defense said
in a report to Congress, that China will “likely
 build multiple aircraft carriers over the next
 decade. The first Chinese-built carrier will
 likely be operational sometime in the
second half of this decade.”

For several years, the US military has said
 that Washington might be losing its military
 superiority in areas such as fighter jets,
 missile systems and cyber warfare "soon".

China, for its part, is concerned about US
 militarism in the Asia-Pacific region.

Beijing sees the Pentagon’s Asia “pivot”
to the Pacific, and its increased military
presence there, as a strategy to counter
 China’s increasing global influence.


New Agreement and Truce in Ukraine

The foreign ministers of the Organization for
 Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE)
 ended in Basel, with important agreements
 on European security and a new truce
 between the US-installed Kiev government
 and its opponents in the South East.


Hezbollah missiles can level Israel
to ground: Iran general
An Iranian commander says missiles of the
 Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah
 are capable of completely destroying Israel.

“Although the United States’ first mission is to
 ensure the security of the Zionist regime, today
 Hezbollah’s missiles can raze Israel to the ground,”
 says Brigadier General Esmail Qa’ani, the second-
in-command of Quds Force, a branch of Iran’s
Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC).

Today, missiles fired by Hezbollah at the Zionist
 regime, have such a range that they can reach
 even Gaza which is located beyond Israel, says
 the general, describing Israel as one of the most
 insecure spots in the world.

“A large number of missiles threatening Israel’s
 security today, are manufactured in this very
 Palestinian territory which, in many cases, has
difficulty providing [even] necessary foodstuff,”
 says the top commander.

Israel launched wars on Lebanon in 2000 and
 2006. About 1,200 Lebanese, mostly civilians,
were killed in the 33-Day War of 2006.

On both occasions, however, Hezbollah fighters
 defeated Israeli forces and Tel Aviv was forced
 to retreat without achieving any of its objectives.

Hezbollah says that it has both the capability
and courage to defend Lebanon and that the
 movement's missiles are ready to strike back
on "certain targets" in Israel in self-defense
--- if Tel Aviv launches an attack on Lebanon.


              Russia Counteracts NATO in Eastern Europe               
 Russia's ambassador to NATO, Alexandr
Grushko, says that his country has begun
applying measures to counter the rising
presence of NATO's military in E. Europe.

NATO is handling the crisis in Ukraine to
 its own advantage, in order to justify its
 activity in the area and the war costs,
 declares the diplomat to the press.

Grushko stresses that Russia's response
will be well-analyzed, based on NATO's
 actions in the region.

According to the Russian diplomat, NATO
 admits that the flights over international
waters of the Baltic sea, authorized by
 Moscow, do not violate the established

The majority of the block's Defense ministers
 indicate that the Russian planes operate in
 full accordance with the rule of International
 Law, and that the routine maneuvres do not
 represent any threat, he states.

Grushko points out that the relationship
between Russia and NATO is getting
closer to freezing point. The alliance
 will have to reassess its position on
 Moscow, he insists.

Russia has no shortage of partners on
the international scene, therefore, the
 projects we have carried out within the
framework of the Russia-NATO Council
 can be retaken with others, or taken


Russia Reinforces Defense in Arctic
                Region with New Command               
 The North United Strategic Command, Russia''s
 fifth Military District equipped with its own land,
 naval and air forces, and deployed beyond the
Arctic Circle, is officially established and now
carrying out its missions, local media report.

The nucleus for this new military structure will
be the Russian North Fleet, whose ships will
 join the maritime units of that armed corps, the
 official newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta reports.

Without revealing the exact composition of
the new command, the newspaper says that,
in addition to the North Fleet, it will be made
up of units from the West, Central, South and
East Military Districts, which were linked to
protecting the Arctic before these changes.

Since October, Russia has stationed army units
 integrated into the Single Tactic Group on its Arctic
 island. Those units are equipped with new weapons
 such as the Rubezh coastal missile systems and the
 Pantsir-S1 missile-cannon anti-aircraft complexes.

Military sources say that a land component of the
 new strategic command, made up of two Arctic
 brigades that must be fully operational by 2016,
is being created.

Mikhail Mizintsev, chief of the National Defense
 Centre, said recently that Russia will build 13
 aerodromes and an aviation polygon in the
Arctic region, where it will replace several
 radars and command posts of the Air Force.

For his part, President Vladimir Putin said
on November 25th that in order to improve
 the composition and structure of the Armed
 Forces, a unified strategic command would
be operational on December 1st in the Arctic.

Nikolai Patrushev, secretary of Russia's Security
 Council, has warned about the interests of such
 countries as the United States, Canada, Iceland,
Norway and Denmark in the Arctic region, and
their military mobilization, which has increased


   Syria Calls Coalition Air Strikes on IS Ineffective
Syrian President Bashar al Assad says that
 the international coalition''s air attacks, led
 by Washington, against the Islamic State (IS)
 terrorist group, are "ineffective".

In an interview with the French 'Paris Match'
 magazine, released on Thursday, and whose
 summary is reproduced by the state-run Sana
news agency, the president says that Syrian
 armed forces fighting against that radical
group have not seen any changes on the
ground, after the coalition's air strikes.

Al Assad repeats his denunciation of the
Turkish Government's support of terrorist
groups in Syria, chiefly IS, and warns that
his people will never accept being puppets
in the hands of Western powers.

The president says that Damascus will hold talks
 with any French Government that works with good
 intentions for the common benefit, but warns that
the government of Francois Hollande acts against
 the interests of both Syria and France.

Last month, Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al
Mekdad accused Ankara and Paris of backing
 terrorist groups in this nation of the Levant.

Al Mekdad said that both Hollande and his
 Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan,
seek to divide Syria.


UN urges Israel to renounce nuclear arms,
 join non-proliferation treaty

The UN General Assembly has passed an Arab-
introduced resolution calling on Israel not to
develop, produce or possess nuclear arms and
 criticizing the country for not being a party to
 the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear
 Weapons (NPT).

The resolution calls on Israel to "accede to that
 treaty without further delay, not to develop,
 produce test or otherwise acquire nuclear
weapons, to renounce possession of nuclear
 weapons," and put its nuclear facilities under
 the safeguard of the UN's International Atomic
 Energy Agency, AP reports.

The UN would like to see the whole of the Middle
 East as a nuclear weapons-free zone, according
 to the text of the document, which specifies that
Israel is the only country in the region which has
 not signed the non-proliferation treaty.

Israel, which is believed to have nuclear arms, but
 has never admitted to it, has long been under fire
 from Arab countries in the region for not putting its
 alleged stockpile under international supervision.

The resolution, initiated by Egypt, was approved
 by 161 nations with only five voting against it,
and 18 abstentions.

The United States and Canada were among the
 minority opposing the measure.

US representative Robert Wood, earlier condemned
 the resolution for failing “to meet the fundamental
 tests of fairness and balance.”

“It confines itself to expressions of concern about
 the activities of a single country," he said.

The International Atomic Energy Agency voted
 in September on a resolution, expressing concern
 over Israel's assumed nuclear arsenal. That time
 the resolution was rejected by 58 votes to 45.

In 2012, the United Nations General Assembly
 passed a non-binding call on Tel Aviv to join
the NPT “without further delay."

Israel rebuffed this call with a Foreign Ministry
statement that the UN has “lost all its credibility
 regarding Israel with these types of routine votes
 that are ensured passage by an automatic majority
 and which single out Israel."

Israel has repeatedly stressed that it sees Iran
 as the real nuclear threat in the region, urging
 the international community to do whatever it
 takes to thwart the 'Iranian nuclear problem'.

Tehran insists it’s not pursuing weapons and
that its nuclear effort is altogether peaceful.


Moscow Slams NATO over Ukraine

Russia accuses NATO of risking European peace
 with military drills linked to a spike in tensions
 over the Ukraine crisis.

Russia's deputy foreign minister Alexei Meshkov
 says that the US-led military alliance is "trying
 to destabilize the world's most stable region".

"Endless military exercises, the deployment of
 nuclear-capable planes to Baltic countries" will
 lead to the "destruction" of stability and security
 in the region, he tells Interfax news agency.

The comments came the same week as a
meeting of foreign ministers from NATO's
28 member states, meet in Brussels.

Talks are dominated by Ukraine, where fighting
 in the east between government forces and pro-
Russian separatist rebels has killed over 4,300
people and displaced one million, since April.

The West accuses Moscow of stoking the
conflict and has imposed sanctions against
Russia, sending relations plunging to Cold
War lows.

On the ground, Ukraine's military says its forces
and Russian generals have agreed a temporary
 ceasefire around an airport in rebel-held Donetsk
 that has been the focus of fighting for months.

A pro-Russian rebel leader confirms to media
outlets that top-level negotiations are ongoing
 and a final agreement is expected by today.

US President Obama and European Council
 chief Donald Tusk express their concern over
the Ukraine crisis, urging Russia to pull back
 from the country's east.

We "agreed on how important it is for Russia
 to withdraw from eastern Ukraine, to stop
supplying troops and equipment, to allow
effective control of the border," Tusk says
in a statement.

"The European Union and the United States
 continue working together closely, including
on sanctions as well as on financial support
 to Ukraine. We agreed to stay united and to
 keep a steady course."

Moscow fiercely rejects any claims that it is
involved in the fighting in east Ukraine but
gives open political backing to the rebels,
who now boast the heavy weaponry of a
 regular army.


Russia in upgraded war of words with NATO

Russia slams NATO Secretary General Jens
 Stoltenberg over his anti-Moscow remarks,
saying NATO's boss repeats "idle inventions".

"Instead of doing some concrete work, looking
for a settlement of the Ukrainian internal conflict,
 Stoltenberg has joined in the efforts of propagating
 idle inventions about the supposed movements of
 Russian armaments across the Ukrainian border,"
 Russia's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria
 Zakharova says in a statement.

The remarks made by Stoltenberg, who took the
 current position in October, were primarily based
 on principles and instructions that reflect the
 consolidated opinion of all 28 member countries
 of NATO, Zhkharova says.

"They bring grist to the mill of Kiev's party of war
 and are fraught with destructive effects on the
 fragile process of peaceful settlement of the
 Ukrainian internal crisis," she adds.

Stoltenberg says that the alliance has extensive
 evidence of the movement of Russian military
 equipment near Ukraine. He says the maneuvers
 Russian military aircraft have been conducting in
 Europe, have posed threats to civilian airlines.

The politician admits to NATO's increasing military
 presence in Eastern Europe, but attributes that to
 the need to prevent developments in Ukraine from
 "growing into a new Cold War".

Moscow insists that NATO prefers to fan up
anti-Russian sentiment, to justify its plans to
 strengthen its defense potential and build up
 its military presence near Russia's borders.

"This creates serious security risks in the
 Euro-Atlantic region," Zakharova says.

Russia & NATO have severely strained ties
 since the Ukraine crisis. Since April, NATO
 has ended all practical cooperation with
Russia, only maintaining contacts at
ambassadorial and higher levels.


Police in Ferguson React
            to Protests by Rams Soccer Players               
 Police officers from Ferguson say today
that six members of the football team
 St. Louis Rams, have been "punished"
for going onto the field with their hands
 up, to protest about the murder of the
African-American, Michael Brown.

The Association of St. Louis police officers
says that it was "deeply disappointed" with
 the demonstration by the athletes from the
National Soccer League (NSL), which they
describe as "offensive and incendiary".

They also claim that the players involved
were punished and that the league and
the team have issued a public apology.

The protest occurred on Sunday, minutes
before the beginning of the game between
 the St. Louis Rams and the Oakland Raiders,
 when Afro-American players Tavon Austin,
 Kenny Britt, Edward Jones Dome, Jared Cook,
 Stedman Bailey and Chris Givens, went out
onto the field, with their hands up.

The slogan "hands up, do not shoot" is being
 used by demonstrators who disagree with a
 decision by a county grand jury in St. Louis,
 not to charge officer Darren Wilson, who was
responsible for Brown's death, on August 9th.

Some witnesses state that Brown, a black
18 year old teenager, had put his hands up
 before receiving six shots fired by white
police officer Wilson.


Right-Wing Continues Losing in
Latin America, says Topolansky
Lucia Topolansky, a re-elected senator and
Uruguay's First Lady, believes that the recent
elections in Latin America, from Venezuela in
2013, to Uruguay last Sunday, prove that "the
right-wing is losing in the region".

In an interview for the newspaper Pagina 12,
 Topolansky, President Jose Mujica's wife, a
former guerrilla member and political prisoner
 during the US-backed Uruguayan dictatorship,
 highlights the importance of regional integration
 and the relationship between her country and

Topolansky, who described herself as "a left-
wing woman seeking socialism", believes that
 Latin America's left-wing lacks theorizing and
should "add theory to these processes and
the concept of populism".

By 'Populism', she refers to the label used by the
 right-wing, calling leaders of the region populist.

She highlights popular projects and revolutionary
 processes that have led to a change of direction
in Latin American politics.

"The most striking was when Cuban President Raul
 Castro received the presidency of the Community of
 Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), from
 Sebastian Piñera:-- that picture would had been
 impossible 15 years ago", says Mrs Topolansky, a
senator for the Movement of Popular Participation.

From her standpoint, Brazilian Frei Betto gives
 the best definition about what is happening in
 Latin America in the statement: "Now people
elect presidents with human faces".

As a Uruguayan politician, Topolansky says
 that she cares "too much about what happens
 in Argentina and Brazil, because we're defined
 a lot by both countries'.


At Least 21 Million People Suffer Modern Slavery
Human rights experts from the United Nations say
 that at least 21 million human beings on the planet
 are now suffering from several contemporary ways
of slavery and they demand the use of political will
to eradicate this shameful practice.

Forced labour in mines & farms, sexual exploitation
 and several "informal economy" jobs under similar
conditions to the ones suffered by slaves in the past,
 are listed as among the modern manifestations of

Women and children are the most affected
 people, says the UN Special Rapporteur for
Contemporary Ways of Slavery, Urmila Bhoola,
a South African lawyer, who adds that statistics
 on the problem do not include the 168 million
 children submitted to infant labour, some of
 them involved in quite dangerous tasks.

"We need countries to fulfill their respective
 obligations on international laws. We need
them to show a greater commitment to
eradicate the problem," says the UN
rapporteur, in a speech on a joint
 declaration on the Day for Abolition of
 Slavery, which is celebrated today.

 The special rapporteur for the Sale and Sexual
 Exploitation of Children, Maud de Boer-Buquicchio,
 complains that millions of minors suffer slavery.

Slavery will only be able to be fought in an effective
way if systems are adopted for the protection of the
 child, including the prevention of the risks and the
 early identification of the victims, he says.

In the joint declaration, the special rapporteur for
 the Trafficking of People, Grazia Giammarinaro,
 demands the existence of mechanisms of justice
 and compensation, at a world level.

"Human victims of contemporary forms of slavery
 should have access to compensation and support,
 regardless of their immigration status or otherwise."

Bhoola, de Boer-Buquicchio & Giammarinaro
 both call for ongoing negotiations to secure
the sustainable development agenda after
2015, to take account of eradicating the
scourge of slavery.


Tension Decreases in Cairo
Tahrir Square Reopened 
Tahrir Square in downtown Cairo is open today
 after being
closed for about 2 days for security
reasons, as well as one of the metro stations.

The area in Cairo gained notoriety during the
popular uprising that put an end to the over
30-year-old regime of Hosni Mubarak, and
then the opposition to the now imprisoned
Mohamed Morsi.

The surrounding of the famous crossroad of
avenues, and the blockade of Gamal Abdel
 Nasser subway, continues under the custody
 of the Army, deployed since last Thursday as
 a precaution against an announced Islamic

The Islamist summoning, to which the Muslim
 Brotherhood (MB) responded, was not warmly
 met by the population. But the exoneration of
 Mubarak, two of his children, and a former
 Minister of the Interior, unleashed a wave of
 mass rejection.

Tahrir and the surrounding areas were the stage
 of a mass protest on Saturday, in which 3 people
 died, due to the exoneration of Mubarak and ex
minister Habib el Adli, accused of allowing the
death of more than 800 demonstrators during
opposition demonstrations in 2011.


              US Laws Encourage Armed Violence               
The rise of violence in the United States is
 directly linked to the existence of state laws
that allow the carrying of firearms, reveals
 new research published today.

The investigation, carried out by experts of 
Stanford and John Hopkins
universities USA,
 rejects the results of previous reports made
with empirical conclusions which asserted
the carrying of firearms by US citizens
results in
a reduction of all kinds of crimes.

'The evidence, based on data between 1979-2010
 suggests that laws on the right to carry arms are
 associated with substantially higher rates of both
and murders, notes the law professor of
University, John Donohue, co-author of
the report.

Although there's no federal law that allows people
to carry guns when they are in public places, 50
states of the Union have adopted statutes that do
allow citizens to carry the devices in public places
-- with a permit from the local authorities, adds the

Since 2009 there have been over 50 massacres
 with guns in the US, the worst of which occurred
 in December 2012, at a school in Newtown,
 Connecticut, where 20 children and 6 adults died.

President Barack Obama launched an offensive
 in 2013 to regulate the sale and use of weapons
 in the country, but he faced strong opposition from
 right-wing groups and the National Rifle Association
who lobbied on behalf of the makers of the devices.


Israeli agents training MKO terrorists in Jordan

 Israel is training members of the anti-Iran terrorist
 Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO) in Jordan
 along the border with Saudi Arabia -- to carry out
 acts of terror inside Iran and neighboring Iraq,
Press TV has learnt.

According to sources, who decline to be named,
MKO terrorists are undergoing training on how
to conduct terrorist operations in Iran and Iraq,
 and are receiving technical and information
technology (IT) training from Israeli agents.
It is the first time it is revealed that anti-Iran
 MKO terrorists are being trained in Jordan
 along the border with Saudi Arabia.

Earlier reports revealed that radical extremists
 are receiving terror training in Jordan before being
 sent into Syria and Iraq to carry out bomb attacks
 and join the ranks of al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra
 Front, ISIL Takfiri militants and other terrorist
 groups operating inside both violence-plagued
 Arab countries.

The MKO fled to Iraq in 1986, where it enjoyed
 the support of Iraq's executed dictator Saddam
 Hussein, and set up its camp near Iran's border.

The group is also known to have cooperated with
 Saddam Hussein in suppressing the 1991 uprisings
 in southern Iraq and carrying out the massacre of
 Iraqi Kurds.

The MKO has carried out numerous acts of violence
 against Iranian civilians and government officials.

Out of the nearly 17,000 Iranians killed in terrorist
 attacks since the victory of Iran’s 1979 Islamic
 Revolution, 12,000 have fallen victim to the acts
 of terror carried out by the MKO.



The United States is set to provide Japan with
a number of amphibious vehicles amid tensions
 between Tokyo and Beijing over disputed islands
 in the East China Sea.

A Defense Ministry official says on Monday that
 Japan plans to buy 52 amphibious vehicles in
 2018, but it has not decided on a model yet,
 Stars and Stripes reports.

The military deal comes as the disputed islands,
called Diaoyu in Chinese and Senkaku in Japanese,
 have been a source of tension between Japan and
 China for decades.

Japan claimed to nationalize a part of the island
 chain by buying them back from private ownership.

Last year, China established an Air Defense
Identification Zone over the East China Sea,
 urging all military and commercial aircraft to
 inform the Chinese government before
entering the region.

However, the United States and Japan violated
the air zone several times after the declaration.

Japan and China have scrambled fighter jets
over the islands during the past two years.

The Japanese government now wants to assemble
a Marines-like unit within its Self-Defense Forces.

A spokesman from Japan’s Defense Ministry said
 the Amphibious Assault Vehicle (AAV-7) is among
 the country’s options.

“We have purchased four AAV-7s in fiscal 2013 and
 two AAV-7s in fiscal 2014 as samples for reference,”
 the unnamed spokesman said.

According to the spokesman, the Defense Ministry
 started reviewing options in April, but it has not
decided on a model yet.


                 Forum for Peace in Bogota Next Sunday               
Representatives of the party Union Patriótica
 have arranged a forum for peace in Colombia's
 capital to be held next Sunday, to promote the
peace talks as a way out of the armed conflict
 --- and for social justice.

The meeting will be headed by Aida Avella,
UP president, and the party invites Bogota
citizens to take part in the forum to be held
at the District University.

With these meetings we contribute to build
 a peaceful scenario - of reconciliation - which
 includes all the sectors hit by violence, says
 a UP press release.

As of right now - it adds - we must begin to
 build the peace that the country needs.

Internal confrontations, over the last 50
 years, have left about six million victims,
 among them, 230 thousand dead.

Social activists and cultural groups have
recently held an artistic event to paint the
walls of Bogota with drawings & messages
 calling for peace.

Recently interrupted peace talks held by
the government and the Revolutionary
Armed Forces of Colombia-Peoples Army
 (FARC-EP), were pursuing an end to the
 armed conflict.

The negotiating process was stopped by
 president Juan Manuel Santos, after the
capture of general Ruben Dario Alzate by
 the guerrilla movement in the department
 of Chocoacute.

Once the high official and those with
 him (lawyer Gloria Urrego and corporal
 Jorge Rodriguez) are freed, negotiations
 should be reestablished in Havana, the
venue of the peace talks since 2012.

Their release is to occur next Sunday,
states FARC-EP.

The Union Patriotica party regained its
 legal right to exist in 2013.

Created in 1985, the UP was a victim
of political
genocide in the 1990s.


Former Israeli President against
                 Declaring Israel a Jewish State               
 Former president Shimon Peres joins the
rejection of other Israeli important figures
 to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu''s
motion declaring in law, the exclusively
Jewish nature of the Israeli State.

"The law is motivated by political interests,
will damage the image of the State, and will
 erode the Israeli democratic principles," says
 Peres at a ceremony attended by Netanyahu.

The current Israeli president, Reuven Rivlin, a
member of the ultra right Zionist coalition Likud,
as well as Netanyahu, expressed a similar opinion
 after Israel's General Attorney, Yehuda Weinstein,
 stated that the motion weakens the country's
 democratic nature.

For its part, the Palestinian Government condemns
 the measure for its racist nature, and lists among
its consequences the loss of rights of Palestinian
 residents in Israeli territory, who are over one
 million 600,000, or 20% of the population.

The recognition by Palestinians of Israel as a
Jewish State was one of the conditions imposed
 by Netanyahu to resume peace talks started in
July 2013 and closed in April this year after the
 formation of a Government of unity in the still
occupied territories.


US Fourth Infantry Division Will Deploy to Ukraine
 Fort Carson''s 4th Infantry Division will be deployed
 in Ukraine at the begining of next January 2015,
 according to The Colorado Springs Gazette.

The Army hasn't said how long the division will be
 overseas, leaving the deployment indefinite and
 the day of departure unknown.

US European Command says the division will head
 to Europe in early 2015, to lead ground forces in
 "Operation Atlantic Resolve."

"Operation Atlantic Resolve is a continued
 demonstration of the US' commitment to
 the collective security of our NATO allies
 and support for our partners in Europe."
 European Command says in a news release.

"The operation will remain in place as long
 as required to reassure our allies."

Leaders from the division will run a series of
training exercises to ensure that US forces are
 ready to fight alongside their partners in Europe
 and they are still developing plans for how they
 will support the open-ended troop commitment
 in Europe.

Fort Carson got the call as part of the Army's
 new "regionally-aligned forces" plan.

That assigns US based units to overseas
 areas of responsibility. In the division's case,
 troops in Colorado Springs will get specialized
training in European languages and culture.

Russia's authorities consistently denounce the
 military reinforcement of NATO in Ukraine and
 other nearby countries, which present a threat
 to Russia's security.


FFIRI condemns Israel raid on
Palestine football association

 The Football Federation of the Islamic Republic
 of Iran (FFIRI) has censured the latest Israeli
 raid on the Palestinian Football Association
(PFA) in the occupied West Bank.

“The military campaign of the Zionist regime
(of Israel) against the oppressed people of
Gaza constantly preys on our mind, as the
 regime commits another act of folly in
 violation of sport's international laws and
 regulations,” the FFIRI says in a statement.

The statement terms Israel’s attack on the
premises of the PFA as illogical and contrary
 to the rules set by FIFA, which specifically
 bar any form of state political involvement
 and/or military action in soccer.

The FFIRI calls on members of the international
 community, especially the governing bodies for
 football worldwide, to condemn the incident.

On Tuesday, FIFA and the Asian Football
 Confederation (AFC) decried the assault
on the Palestinian soccer body.

On Monday, Israeli soldiers broke into the
PFA's headquarters in the Palestinian town of
 al-Ram, situated eight kilometers (4.9 miles)
north of al-Quds (Jerusalem), ransacked it
 and assaulted its employees.

PFA President Jibril Rajoub says the raid
was an attempt by the Tel Aviv regime to
undermine Palestinian sports, and calls for
international condemnation of the incident.

Israel's regime has imposed travel restrictions
 on Palestinian footballers in the occupied West
Bank and besieged Gaza Strip.

Despite all obstacles, Palestinians managed in
 May, to qualify for the 16th edition of the AFC
 Asian Cup, scheduled to be held in Australia
 from January the 9th to the 31st, in 2015.


US may be helping ISIL terrorists in Iraq: Officials

‘US pursues agenda of Syria destruction’
‘US double game targets Syria gov’t’

Iraqi officials say that the US-led coalition against
 ISIL Takfiri terrorists may have intentionally dropped
 arms for the militant group, Press TV reports.

“The airstrikes cannot defeat ISIL and liberate the
 cities. We hear that in some places the warplanes
 drop weapons for ISIL... What we know is that the
 victories achieved on the ground are done by the
 Iraqi army and volunteers,” Iraqi State of Law
 Coalition MP Hanan Fatlawi told the Press TV
 correspondent in Baghdad.

On October 22, the US admitted that one of the
 weapon airdrops intended for Kurds fighting in
the Syrian town of Kobani was almost certainly
 intercepted by ISIL terrorists.

“The presence of international advisers in such
 huge numbers is not necessary. We are in a war
 and this is not the time for training, it’s the time
 for fighting. I think this is an effort by the US to
come back to Iraq,” Fatlawi added.

Washington has launched hundreds of airstrikes
 against the ISIL militants in Iraq and Syria, which
 analysts regard as part of the US attempts to
 gradually spread its influence in Iraq.

The Takfiri militants have been carrying out
horrific acts of violence, including public
decapitations and crucifixions, against all
Syrian and Iraqi communities such as Shias,
Sunnis, Kurds, Christians and Izadi Kurds.

The West and its regional allies, including
Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey, are giving
 financial & military support to the militants.



The European Union & the United States have
 no idea what the final solution to the Ukraine
 crisis should be. Nor do they know the vector
of movement towards this settlement, Vladimir
 Chizhov, Russia’s Ambassador to the European
 Union, said in a live interview aired by the state-
owned Rossiya 24 television news channel on

“They (the European Union & the United States)
 are driving, or have already driven themselves,
 into a corner. They were very much unwilling to
 recognize their responsibility for what happened
 in Ukraine. It’s only now that sober-minded and
 reasonable voices have started breaking through
 the propaganda noise,” Chizhov said.


UN rights chief: Disproportionate number
 of blacks killed by police

The United Nations human rights chief voices
 concern over “institutionalized discrimination”
 and the “disproportionate” number of young
 African Americans being killed by police in
 the United States.

“I am deeply concerned at the disproportionate
 number of young African Americans who die in
 encounters with police officers, as well as the
 disproportionate number of African Americans
in US prisons and the disproportionate number
of African Americans on death row,” says Zeid
Ra’ad Al Hussein, the UN High Commissioner
for Human Rights, in a statement.

His comments come after a grand jury in Missouri
fails to indict a white police officer for the fatal
 shooting of unarmed African American teenager
 Michael Brown in Ferguson.

The 12-member jury, including nine whites and
three African Americans, had been meeting in
 secret for months on whether probable cause
 existed to bring charges against Darren Wilson.

The decision has sparked a fresh firestorm of
 protests across the United States.

The UN rights chief warns that there is a deep
 lack of confidence in the fairness of the justice
 system in the United States, and urges the
 authorities to thoroughly examine how “race-
related issues are affecting law enforcement
and the administration of justice, both at the
 federal and state levels.”

To many protesters, Brown’s death is symbolic
 of broader racial injustice in America.
In 2012, African American man Trayvon Martin
 was gunned down by a white Florida neighbor-
hood watch --- later acquitted of murder.


50 civilians dead in US-led airstrikes
 against ISIS in Syria – UN

The US-led coalition against the Islamic State (IS,
 formerly ISIS/ISIL) in Syria has killed 865 people
 since the start of the airstrikes in late September,
at least 50 of them civilians, a new report from
 the UN chief reveals.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warns that the
 strikes alone cannot defeat the militant Islamist
 group and cites estimates of civilian casualties
 caused by the bombing.

“The international coalition continued airstrikes
 against ISIL in Syria on a near-daily basis with
 reports of some 865 people killed, including 50
 civilians, in Aleppo, Deir ez-Zor, Hasakeh, Idlib
 & Raqqa since strikes began,” the report says.

Meanwhile, “armed opposition and designated
 terrorist groups continue shelling government-
controlled areas, including in civilian-populated
 areas... including in Damascus, Homs, Hama
and Quneitra,” according to the report.

Ban warns that “a military campaign alone
[against IS] could lead to further radicalization
 and spark a cycle of renewed violence,” adding
 that Islamic State is intensifying its recruitment
efforts inside and outside of Syria.

The document focuses on the July 14 resolution,
 which approved delivery of aid to rebel-held areas
 in Syria without the government's approval through
four border crossings. Ban confirms that the UN
 team has been able to access an average of 66
hard to reach areas a month since the resolution
 was passed, up from an average of 38 per month
 in the four months prior to the vote.

Following the report, UN humanitarian chief Valerie
 Amos told the Security Council that an estimated
  12.2 million people need assistance in Syria – a
rise from 10.8 million in July. At the same time,
Amos said that aid coming in from Turkey and
 Jordan is making a difference and called on the
 UNSC to extend the authorization that expires
 on January 9th.

Critics of the US-led bombing warfare against ISIS
 in Iraq and Syria assert that not only is this tactic
 ineffective – it also encourages more people to
join radical groups.

“It's completely unsuccessful from the standpoint
of destroying ISIS, but it’s an enormous success
 story for ISIS. It is actually helping the Sunni
Islamists recruit new people – over a thousand
every month from across Asia, Africa, and the
 Middle East,” retired US Army Colonel Douglas
 MacGregor explains to RT.

According to MacGregor, Washington should not
 step into the conflict and should leave it at the
 regional level.


Russian Navy checks Nuclear Capability
                 and Adds New Units               
 The Russian Navy this year has tested its
 nuclear deterrent and strengthened its
 potential with new naval units, say its
 senior officers.

Admiral Vladimir Korolev, head of the Northern
 Fleet, says that the squadron in charge of the
atomic deterrent reaffirms its ability to fulfill
 the assigned missions.

Korolev highlights the high combat capability
 demonstrated this year.

He commends the missions carried out effectively
 by Navy troops in repaired or upgraded submarines.

This year, the Pacific Fleet has already received
 the first 10 of 12 craft which increase its potential
power, according to the spokesperson for the East
Military District, Captain Roman Martov.

It's the first time that the squadron has received
 this number of new ships in a year, since the
 collapse of the Soviet Union, says the official.

The Pacific Fleet will also receive tugboats
RB-406 and RB-407.

This number of special and auxiliary units
 enhances the combat effectiveness of the
 squadron, concludes the official.

Russia is modernizing its arsenal amid the
 growing hostility of the United States and
 NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization),
 that has already deployed forces and arms
 in countries bordering Russia, a situation
 that didn't exist in the worst moments of
the Cold War.


U.S. defense secretary resigns

Obama on Monday announced the resignation of
 Chuck Hagel as the country's defense secretary,
 making the first change to his cabinet after the
 Democrats' heavy losses in midterm elections.


Iranian nuclear talks extended by 7 months
 The sides will meet again in December to discuss
 the tough Iranian nuclear issue, and the expert-
level meeting will start soon, aimed at a political
 deal within four months, US Secretary of State,
 John Kerry, told reporters on Monday.

Kerry said that expert-level talks will start soon.
 "In fact we will have meetings in December,"
he noted.

Speaking at a press conference, Kerry said they
had achieved "real and substantial progress" on
 Iran's nuclear issue in the past negotiations and
this lays the foundations for further talks in the
next months.

"These last days in Vienna, we have made real
 and substantial progress, and we have seen
 new ideas surface," Kerry said.

After a week of difficult talks, the parties
involved decided to extend Iran's nuclear
talks by seven months, aiming to reach a
 political agreement within the next four
months, Kerry said.

Kerry stressed that even though the talks
 are not finalized "the world is safer than
 it was just one year ago."

"We are closer to a deal," he said, adding
that a comprehensive agreement is
 "possible" and "desirable."

Iran has 19,000 centrifuges installed, of
 which 10,190 are operating. Most are IR-1,
 an old model centrifuge, and Iran has also
installed around 1,000 IR-2M centrifuges,
 which are assessed to be 3 to 5 times
 more efficient than IR-1 centrifuges.

Israel openly questions the nuclear talks,
 fearing that a "bad nuclear deal" could
 undermine its security. It leaves as "open"
the possibility of military action against
 Iran's nuclear facilities.

Recent nuclear talks between Iran and
 world powers over the country's nuclear
issue have been " steps forward," Iran's
President Hassan Rouhani said Monday.

"Although in the recent nuclear talks we
could not finalize a comprehensive deal,
I could say that forward steps have been
 taken in the run-up for a final agreement,"
Rouhani said in an interview with IRIB TV
following Iran's agreement with the world
powers in Vienna on Monday to extend the
 nuclear talks for another seven months.

The White House warned on Monday that
 additional sanctions on Iran would be
 "counterproductive"..... as the Islamic
 republic and major powers had agreed
 to extend their nuclear talks for seven
more months.

"We continue to believe that adding on
 sanctions while negotiations are ongoing
 would be counterproductive," spokes-
person Josh Earnest said, in response
 to some lawmakers clamoring for more
 sanctions on Tehran after negotiators
failed to close a final deal by Monday's
 previous deadline after long intense
 talks in Vienna, Austria. 


Obama’s U-Turn on Afghanistan:
US Combat Role Secretly Extended

US President Barack Obama has secretly signed
 an order which allows US troops to be involved in
 combat operations in Afghanistan throughout 2015.

The order will authorize American forces to continue
 their missions against the Taliban and other militant
groups, the New York Times reports.

The new order also allows for air support - from
US jets, bombers and drones, for Afghan combat
missions, according to the report,.

The Times quotes an administration official
as saying that US forces will not carry out
 "offensive missions" on the Taliban in 2015.

“We will no longer target belligerents solely
because they are members of the Taliban,”
 the official said. “To the extent that Taliban
 members directly threaten the United States
and coalition forces in Afghanistan or provide
 direct support to Al Qaeda, however, we will
 take appropriate measures to keep Americans

Obama’s new decision has been made in recent
 weeks with his top national security advisors.

Previously, the president said that US-led NATO
 combat operations would finish at the end of
this year.

The NATO follow up mission, to take over on
January 1st with 9,800 US troops and about
3,000 soldiers from Germany, Italy and other
 member nations, was to focus on supporting
 Afghan forces as they take on the Taliban, in
 parallel with US counter-terrorism operations.


         Russian FM Urges Recognition of Palestinian State                
 The Russian Foreign Affairs Minister, Sergei Lavrov
today urges an end to the long armed conflict with
 Israel, and the illegal occupation of Palestinian
 territories, and presses as a solution, recognition
 of the Palestinian State.

During his address to the meeting of the Council
 for Foreign Policy and Defense, Lavrov says the
 question of a Palestinian state should no longer
be frozen.

"It is important to understand that problems can
not continue in deep freeze all the time, while the
 Arab-Israeli conflict is still at a standstill, notes
 the head of Russian diplomacy.

The situation in the Palestinian territories,
 Syria, Libya, Iraq and Yemen and the overall
  convulsive situation in the Middle East, was
discussed the previous evening, by Lavrov
and his counterpart from Saudi Arabia, Saud
 al Faisal, during official talks in Moscow.

The leaders of the Palestinian Authority demand
 that the UN Security Council force Israel to end
 the illegal occupation of Palestinian territories in
 the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, as a factor in
 the escalation of confrontation and the rise in
civilian deaths on both sides.


West Hopes for a Change of Regime
               in Russia Says FM               
 The West has the deliberate intention of
destroying Russia's economy and changing
 the government regime and does not hide it
 today, stresses Russian Foreign Minister,
 Sergei Lavrov.

The purpose of Western sanctions is to
change the regime, and it does not even
 hide it, stresses Lavrov, in his address to
 the assembly of the Council for Foreign
policy and defense.

He says Western leaders speak publicly
 that restrictive measures should be such
 so that they can destroy our economy and
 raise popular protests in the country.

In the election campaign of President Vladimir
 Putin for a third term, Russian pro-Western
 opposition parties called, in February 2012,
 for massive demonstrations to be held in a
so-called anti-Putin Million March, in May,
after his presidential inauguration.

Lavrov considers the West is trying to act in a
 'thirst for widening the geopolitical space', as
 traders fears of losing their benefits are obvious.

The foreign minister repeats that the sanctions
 imposed by the US, EU and some allies are also
 detrimental to the promoting countries, besides
 destroying the main principles of international
 economic relations, he adds.

He also denies that such instruments of pressure,
 used in other global contexts, has achieved the
 political isolation of Russia, which is revealed
as having multiple links with many countries,
 all over the world.


Salam on Lebanon's Independence Day:

 "Country holds fast so far, We support
 any means to release kidnapped
soldiers -- As long as they respect
 Lebanon's rights

PM Tammam Salam decries the Lebanon's
 current situation, contrasting today's leaders
 with the leading figures during independence,
but accepts that the country's present state
 results from the accumulated malpractices
of many years that have passed since.

"Nobody is exempt from the situation Lebanon
 is currently suffering from, but responsibility
falls upon the leaders," Salam tells "Voice of
 Lebanon" radio, on Independence Day.

Salam adds that he has been trying to put
on the right track, but "it is tough
and hard".

"Despite that, the present situation in Lebanon
 is sound -- so far," the PM says, expressing his
 concern over immature political performances
 by some leaders, which might disrupt finding
any political solutions to the current crisis
and could drive the country to a deadlock.
Commenting on claims that it takes more than
agreements to build a country, Salam says:
 "In a diversified country like Lebanon,
agreements among its citizens are basic
 to keep it healthy."
Talking about what lies behind the failure of
to reach a Lebanese-Lebanese consensus,
 Salam notes that foreign countries play an
 important role in the achievement of such
 settlements, adding that foreign forces are
 currently occupied in more dangerous issues
 of a higher priority than Lebanon.

Salam stresses the importance of internal
agreement among all parties for "no party
 can triumph over the other," underscoring
that agreement has obviously recognisable
 characteristics, primarily dialogue, open-
ness and recognition of the other.

Talking about UN Security Council statements
 which call on the Lebanese to speed up the
 election of a new President, Salam says:
 "It seems that the international referees
are keen to treat Lebanon's situation in
a positive manner."

Responding to a question about the extent to
which Speaker Nabih Berri's call for dialogue
 between the "Future" movement and Hizbullah
 has succeeded, Salam confirms that Speaker
Berri "enjoys a special place that enables him
 to follow up on this issue… and employ his
 capabilities to find appropriate solutions."

Talking about the economic situation, he
 considers that the power void negatively
affects the economic situation,  not to
 mention the repercussions on Lebanon
 of Syria's population displacement.

Tackling the kidnapped security members
 and soldiers' issue, Salam stresses:
 "the cabinet's permanent keenness to
 adopt all means possible to set our sons
 free," supporting any means that might
contribute to releasing them -- provided it
respects the state's dignity and rights.

Talking about the possibility of reaching
 an agreement with Iran on its nuclear file
and the impact of that on Lebanon, Salam
 confirms that any agreement of the kind
will reflect positively on all countries and
 would result in more stability in the region.


US Escalates its Failed Strategy in Syria

Turkey and the United States have recently signed
 an agreement to train and equip 2,000 fighters of
 the "moderate" Syrian opposition, says Turkish
newspaper Hurriyet Daily News.

Training these forces of the so-called Free Syrian
 Army (FSA) will begin “late December” at Turkey's
 Kirsehir Training Centre, 150 klmtrs southeast of
 the Turkish capital, Ankara, adds the newspaper
 --- quoting unidentified sources.

The training will be carried out by the Turkish
and US military, but the equipment and cost of
 the training will be entirely paid by the US, says
 Hürriyet. The final details of the plan were agreed
 at a meeting between the military leaders of the
 two countries.

Shortly after, The Washington Post indicated
the US government has been studying
plans to
increase the CIA’s role in arming and
training of
“moderate” (a term meaning they
are willing to
surrender their country to the
Western powers)
terrorists in Syria, a move
aimed at escalating
covert US support.

 The Pentagon is preparing to establish its own
 training bases, US officials say, opines the Post:
“The proposed CIA buildup would expand a covert
 mission that's grown substantially over the past
 year”.” The agency now arms and trains about
400 rebels each month” and a similar number is
 expected “to be trained by the Pentagon when
its program reaches full strength late next year”.

However, this strategy is now facing its first
 obstacles, writes Yusuf Fernandez on al Manar.

 Firstly, it has led ISIL and the al-Qaeda-affiliated
al Nusra Front to sign an alliance, fighting both
 the Syrian Army and the US-backed forces.
In a meeting held on November 2nd in the
northern Syrian town of Atareb, both groups,
 the largest ones in the Syrian terrorist camp,
agreed not to fight against each another and
to cooperate against their common enemies.

Before the US started its airstrikes in Syria
 in September, ISIL and al Nusra Front were
 fierce enemies, fighting each other for
leadership of the insurgency.

 The US air war targeting both groups has
 persuaded them to cooperate against a
mutual enemy.

Their alliance, Yusuf Fernandez on al Manar
says, presents more difficulties for the US
 strategy against ISIL. He says the union of
 both groups will make them more effective
against US-backed rebels, who are already
 considered to be weak and disorganized.

al Nusra Front has already almost wiped out
 the Syrian Revolutionaries Front and the
Hazm Movement, two rebel groups armed
 and trained by the United States.

 On November 1st, SRF surrendered after
the fall of Deir Sinbal, its main stronghold
 in Syria, and agreed to hand over all their
 weapons and bases to the Nusra Front.

Another dozen rebel-controlled villages in
 the Idlib province were also captured. “As
 a movement, the SRF is effectively finished,"
 says Aymen al-Tammimi, a Syrian analyst,
to the Daily Telegraph. “Nusra has driven
 them out of their Idlib & Hama strongholds.”

Captured US weapons included anti-tank
 missiles and GRAD rockets, adding to the
 sizable stock of US weapons now in the
hands of ISIL and The Nusra Front in Iraq
 and Syria.

Despite being small factions within the
 terrorist camp in Syria, the US gave
SRF and the Hazm Movement, large
amounts of advanced weapons.

The very next day, the Harakat Movement
 also surrendered their military bases and
weapons to al Nusra Front, when the latter
seized the villages it controlled in northern
 Idlib province.

 ISIL sent 100 fighters to help al Nusra Front
to take over the town of Khan al Sunbul in
 northern Syria but their intervention became
 unnecessary because the Hazm Movement
 surrendered without fighting and 65 of its
 militants defected to al Nusra Front.

al Nusra Front also took over the town of
Minnig in Aleppo Province, on the outskirts
of the city. Its fighters ordered all other US-
backed rebels there to disband and turn
 their weapons over to them.

 As a result, there are already only two
 effective fighting forces in Aleppo province
 now: The al Nusra Front and Syria's Army.

Another report by AP, confirms that the
 “moderate rebels” that Washington is
boosting “are instead hemorrahaging
 on multiple fronts". Some of their
have been killed.

 “This is the end of the Free Syrian Army,"
says Alaa al-Deen, an opposition activist
 in Idlib, of Western-backed militant groups.

 He adds that - in recent weeks - dozens of
leaders of the “moderate” terrorist groups
have been eliminated.

For the US, Yusuf Fernandez on al Manar says,
the defeat of these groups, which had been
 trying to present themselves as successful
examples for the US in Syria, is a humiliating
 blow, at a time when the US administration
 is increasing the training of "its" rebels.

The Syrian population is also fed up with
 these terrorists, who are supported by
US, Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

While Washington has been selling the
that these people, who largely
share the
extremist ideology of their
new enemies,
are “freedom fighters”,
Syrians see them as
just terrorists,
bandits, and brutal exploiters.

In Douma, the main rebel stronghold in Eastern
 Gouta, near Damascus, several clashes occurred
 on November 14th, after an attack by inhabitants
 of the city, against a grocery store controlled by
 a rebel group.

US and Saudi patronage of the “moderate rebel
 groups” has convinced Syrians that they are
just mercenaries who seek to impose foreign
 control over Syria, and thus put an end to the
prominent role that the country has played
 in the Middle East for decades.

Therefore, Syrians will fight these forces in
 order to maintain their independence.

US support for terrorist groups in Syria also
violates international law, which prohibits
 states from giving aid to foreign insurgents
 who seek to overthrow legal governments
 in other countries.

In this sense, US actions against Syria are a
 threat to the whole international community
 and the international legal framework. They
 are also a proxy war against Syria´s allies,
especially Iran, Russia and China.

The new US plans in Syria, instead of drawing
 the right lessons from failure --- the first of which
 is that any successful strategy against terrorism
 in Syria needs the cooperation of the Syrian Army
 and State, which are the most effective forces in
 the anti-ISIS fight --- the US Administration sticks
 once again to the failed strategy of supporting
 non-existent “moderate rebels”.

It means that there is not a new strategy, but
 an escalation that has been going on in recent
 months and which will become a more serious
failure for US' foreign policy.


Russia Warns of Signs of Change
               in US Policy Towards Ukraine               
 Russia's Foreign Ministry spokesperson,
 Alexander Lukashevich says today that
 the visit of US Vice President 'Joe' Biden
 to Kiev might mean a change of direction
 into open military support to that country.

Lukashevich considers as a serious sign,
 recent pronouncements in Washington
about US administration plans to provide
 lethal weapons to Ukraine, which would
 mean a clear, direct violation of the
Geneva agreements, he says.

The diplomat says that Moscow paid attention
 to the trip to Washington of representatives of
 the 'volunteer" battalions, which took part in
 the 'cleansing' operations in Donbass, to ask
for military assistance from the US government.

In his opinion, the public announcements of the
 White House and Biden's visit, might give signs
 of a cardinal change in US policy regarding the
 conflict in southeastern Ukraine.

He recalls that the Geneva declaration in April,
focussing on the end of armed confrontation
the start of a broad national dialogue,
reached with US participation.

If a change in that policy occurs, any military
support will be a destabilizing factor leading
 to a modification of the balance of power in
 the Ukrainian conflict, he says, adding that
military support to Kiev will ignore the basic
 principles of the Organization for Security &
 cooperation in Europe, accepted by all of its
members, regarding the transfer of weapons
 in conflict areas.

Biden recently told Ukrainian newspaper Den
 that he had many important announcements
 to be addressed to the Ukrainian government
and people when he arrived in Kiev for his visit.

He was scheduled to arrive in Kiev last night
 with Assistant Secretary of State for Eurasian
 Affairs, Victoria Nuland.


Zionist Settlers Storm Al-Aqsa Mosque,
Clashes Reported in WB

Zionist settlers, backed by occupation police,
 stormed al-Aqsa Mosque yesterday in al-Quds
(Jerusalem), sparking clashes with Palestinians
 who reject any desecration of the holy mosque.

Media reports say Palestinians intercepted the
 Zionist settlers, backed by occupation police.
Fierce clashes were reported at the scene,
injuring dozens of Palestinians.

Clashes were reported in other neighborhoods
 across the West Bank, as Israeli occupation
police fired live bullets and tear gas at the
Palestinian civilians.

The IDF also raided the houses of the two
 Palestinians who carried out operation in
 a Jerusalem synagogue on Tuesday, in a
 bid to destroy the houses. But Palestinian
 residents prevented the occupation police
 from doing so.

Tensions in the West Bank are rising, especially
 in the occupied city of al-Quds, where extremist
 Zionists have been calling for Jews to pray in
 the holy al-Aqsa Mosque, a desecration that is
 totally rejected by Palestinians and Muslims.


Turkey doomed to fall under Erdogan:

Former Turkish President Abdullah Gul slams
the government of President Recep Tayyip
Erdogan, warning that Ankara is doomed to
collapse, if it continues its foreign policy on
Iraq and Syria.

Gul criticizes the Turkish president’s policies on
 the chaotic situation in neighboring Syria, saying:
“I am sure that one day (God forbid) the chickens
 of Erdogan’s past follies in Syria will come home
 to roost."

The former Turkish leader goes on to say
 that Ankara’s spy agencies have played a
key role in the transportation of the Takfiri
 militants fighting the government of Syrian
 President Bashar Al-Assad, ever since the
crisis erupted in Syria in 2011.

Erdogan’s strategic blunders in neighboring
Syria and Iraq are behind the emergence of
 the ISIL Takfiri terrorists, who're committing
 atrocities in those areas under their control
 in both countries, according to Gul.

He slams the US-led “idiots’ club” coalition
 currently carrying out airstrikes against ISIL
 hideouts in Iraq and Syria.

Gul adds that some Saudi-backed terrorist
 organizations operating against Syria, such
as the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front,
 have been working with Western spy
 agencies, including the CIA.

He adds that mutual cooperation existed
“between Turkey’s National Intelligence
 Organization (MÄ°T)” & the ISIL extremist

The ISIL terrorists entered Iraq in June. The
violence is seen as a spillover of militancy
 from Syria, where Takfiri groups fighting the
 Damascus government are enjoying support
 from the US and its allies, including Saudi
Arabia, Qatar and Turkey.


OSCE monitors says
Ukrainian troops shot

 in their direction twice
in past two days...

One incident took place on Wednesday
 near the village of Marinovka, the other
one was reported on Tuesday in the
town of Debaltsevo

Ukrainian troops opened fire at monitors
 from the Organization for Security and
 Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) twice in the
last two days, states the regular daily up-
date of OSCE's Special Monitoring Mission
 (SMM) to Ukraine made public Wednesday.

The OSCE monitors were unhurt.

"On November 19th, at “12:38hrs, an OSCE convoy
 composed of two vehicles was travelling east from
 Kurakhovo (30km west of Donetsk) towards the city
 of Donetsk. Near the area of Mariinka, about 80m
 ahead of the convoy, there was a flat-bed cargo
 truck carrying a large green wooden box, with
2 uniformed personnel on board wearing helmets.

 "The SMM observed tactical marks of two white
 vertical lines on the tail-gate of the vehicle and
on the passenger door. One of the soldiers stood
 up and fired two shots in the direction of the OSCE
 convoy. The bullets struck about 2m from the second
 OSCE vehicle. The SMM staff travelling in this
 vehicle heard sharp sounds originating from road
 or bullet fragments impacting on their car.”

On November 18th, the SMM was traveling towards
 Perevalsk, when it came under gunfire. They report
 that the SMM “was not allowed to pass” through a
 checkpoint controlled by Ukrainian forces at the
 entrance of a bridge in a northeastern suburb of the
 town of Debaltsevo. “Instead, the SMM was told to
 take a long roundabout route to bypass the bridge,”
 the report says.

 Returning from Perevalsk, the mission came
 to the bridge & stopped at another checkpoint
 directly opposite the one on the other side of
 the bridge.

 “As the SMM stopped in expectation of a further
 command, a warning shot was fired by CP staff in
 the direction of the OSCE car,” the document says.


Israel slams Spain's vote for Palestinian recognition

The Israeli Foreign Ministry has harshly criticized
 the Spanish parliament for passing a non-binding
 resolution calling for recognition of a Palestinian
 state, saying such measures "push away" the
 chances of reaching an agreement.

"The Spanish parliament's declaration only pushes
 away further the chance of reaching an agreement
 between Israel and the Palestinians, because it
 encourages the Palestinians to take extreme
 positions," the ministry says in its statement.

The ministry also slams the timing of the vote,
 which took place Tuesday evening, the same
day in which a murderous militant attack at a
 synagogue in Jerusalem, killed five Israelis.

Spain's parliament passed the symbolic
 motion, calling upon the government to
 recognize a Palestinian state, with 319
 parliament members voting for it and
two voting against it.

"It's not binding," Spanish Foreign Minister
Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo told media
 in Belgium, the day before the vote:

 "It does not set a timeline for the recognition,
 it gives the government the margin to proceed
 with the recognition, when it feels it will be
 opportune," he added.

Both the UK and Irish parliaments made similar
 non- binding resolutions last month, after Sweden,
 was the first major Western European country to
 announce its acknowledgement of a Palestinian
 state, in October.

French politicians vote on a
similar bill next week.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu criticizes the
 wave of symbolic recognition of a Palestinian
 state and blames the countries that want to
"reward" Palestinians for their "constant
 incitement" via the Palestinian Authority,
 and urges the international community to
 denounce terror.

Peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians
 collapsed in April and the Palestinian Authority
 has been seeking diplomatic avenues to end the
 occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Israel faces a diplomatic crisis, with its relations
 with the US at a low point, and growing criticism
 over its ongoing expansion of settlements in the
 West Bank and east Jerusalem.

 The European Union is considering imposing
 sanctions on Israel over its settlement policy.

 In addition, Israel has been under scrutiny for
 its offensive in the recent Gaza War, which
 killed over 2,000 Palestinians: mostly civilians.


Extraterritorial Threat of Vulture Funds
                 Denounced in France               
 The ruling by a US judge to force Argentina
 to pay a disproportionate sum to speculators
 is now a threat to EVERY States'' sovereignty,
 several French experts state.

Judge Thomas Griesa, from a New York court,
has sentenced Buenos Aires to comply with
 the demands of so-called vulture funds, which
 bought Argentina's public debts at less than
 15 percent of its real value -- but now plan to
collect all of it.

According to Pierre Salama, professor emeritus
 of the University of Paris, it is a decision that
 goes beyond the scope of a dispute between
 a small group of voracious creditors and the
 Argentinean State, and is now a real threat
all countries.

If Argentina had accepted Griesa's ruling in
 the United States, its sovereignty would
have disappeared, said the experts during
a debate about the issue held at the House
 of Latin America in the French capital.

For his part, the economist Dominique
 Plihon said it is another case of juridical
 extraterritoriality committed by US justice.

The United States imposes its norms on
 others, although the entire Argentinean
 debt affected by the demand from the
speculators isn't on US territory, he noted.

He recalled that the case was criticized at
several levels, such as the United Nations
 General Assembly and the Human Rights
 Council in Geneva.

Between 2005 - 2010, Argentina successfully
 concluded negotiations to restructure 93% of
 its debt, a landmark in international economic

Carlos Quenan, a professor at the University
 of Sorbonne Nouvelle, says the predatory acts
of the vulture funds demand a permanent
 global solution.

Jose Eduardo Weisfreid, of the executive
 committee of France-Amérique Latine,
said that Argentina's public debt is an
 inheritance from the US-backed military
 dictatorship and neoliberal government
 of President Carlos Menem, which
plunged the country into poverty.


Independent report saying bombings of IS
positions kill civilians alarmingRussian FM

“The fact of civilian casualties resulting from
 UN-unauthorized bombings of Islamic State
 positions, quoted by the Independent
 International Commission of Inquiry for Syria
 under the UN Council for Human Rights, are
 alarming, the Russian Foreign Ministry says.

“On November 14, the Independent International
 Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Republic,
 established by the UN Human Rights Council,
published a report entitled Rule of Terror: Living
 under ISIL (Islamic State's former name was
 Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant). It was
drawn up at Russia’s request and supported
by 17 other states,” the Foreign Ministry says.

“One cannot but feel concern over the fact that
 the Commission mentions civilian deaths in the
 course of UN-unauthorized bombings of ISIL
 positions in Syria by the United States and its
 allies,” the Foreign Ministry says.

“We fully share the Commission’s call for the
 resumption of intra-Syrian talks with the aim
 of normalization of the political situation in
 the Syrian Arab Republic,” Russia's Foreign
 Ministry says.

 “Joint work against terrorism must become
 one of the key topics of a dialogue between
 the Syrian government and a credible
 delegation of the Syrian opposition."


Greeks march to commemorate 1973 uprising
on International Student's Day

Thousands of Greeks have taken to the streets
of the capital, Athens, to commemorate the
1973 student uprising against the country's
 US-backed military dictatorship.

Over 20,000 demonstrators took part in the
peaceful march on Monday, marking the 41st
 anniversary of the National Technical University
 of Athens (Athens Polytechnic) uprising, which
 began on November 14th, 1973, and ended in
 bloodshed in the early morning of November 17.

The annual rally in which the students, joined
 by trade union members, marched from the
 Polytechnic University to the US embassy,
 was policed by some 7,000 officers.

Greek officials closed down most of the
city’s universities and banned all sit-ins.

As part of security measures in the city,
the authorities closed off major streets
 and underground stations.

Athens' Law School and Athens University
 of Economics were also cordoned off by
security police.

On November 13th, police forces gathered
the Athens Law School and Athens
of Economics after a decision by
the universities’
authorities not to shut down
the schools ahead
of the November 17th

Brief clashes broke out when the students
tried to enter the school building, with
 police using tear gas to disperse them.

The November 17th anniversary marks
student uprising against Greece's
 military rule in 1973, to which police and
 the Greek military responded by opening
 fire on protesters and bystanders, killing
hundreds of them.


EU discusses sanctions against eastern Ukraine

 The Council of the European Union (EU) on Monday
 discussed more sanctions targeting eastern Ukraine.

No more sanctions were announced against Russia.
The EU said in a statement that they will continue
to closely follow the situation in Ukraine and "act

Tension has escalated since the Kiev authorities
 decided to repeal a law granting special status to
 Donetsk and Lugansk regions, which raised fears
 that an ongoing prisoners-of-war swap may be

The EU called on all parties to follow the Minsk
 agreements, underlining the need to intensify
talks within the framework of the Trilateral
Contact Group.

The Kiev government and the leaders in the south
East signed a ceasefire deal on September 5th in
 the Belarusian capital city of Minsk, to de-escalate
 tensions and release of hundreds of prisoners-of-war.

The Minsk agreement was signed by representatives
 of Ukraine, Russia, and the self-proclaimed Donetsk
 and Lugansk people's republics under the OSCE deal.


Israel Assures Expansion in Jerusalem
                     "Will Continue"              
 Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman
 says Israel WILL continue expanding in East
 Jerusalem, despite the fact that it violates
 international law & compromises the remote
 possibility of an agreement with Palestinians.

"We will never accept the definition of the
 constructions in Jerusalem as settlements.
 We will not admit any limits to construction
 in all areas of Jerusalem," says the minister
in a joint press conference with the German
Foreign Minister, Frank Walter Steinmeier.

In 1980, Israel annexed East Jerusalem
(Al Quds to
Muslims), and declared it as
its "eternal,
indivisible capital", in a
resolution that has been
considered as
illegal by the international community,

 which also condemns the construction
of Israeli
settlements in the West Bank.

A few days ago, Tel Aviv allowed the
 building of 200 homes in Jerusalem,
shortly after beginning the process
constructing 167 other houses.

In recent weeks, the city, which is sacred
 to the three major monotheistic religions,
 Islam, Christianity and Judaism, was the
scene of clashes between local people
 and occupying troops, due to outrages
 against the Al Aqsa Mosque, one of the
three most sacred places for Muslims.



Russia’s humanitarian convoy, which took
 aid to Donetsk city in eastern Ukraine, has
 returned to Russia’s southern Rostov region,
 Oleg Voronov, a deputy head of the Russian
 Emergencies Ministry’s National Crisis
 Management Centre, says.

Early on Sunday, over 50 lorries delivered
350 tonnes of humanitarian aid to Donetsk.
 It took several hours to unload them.

“Over 50 lorries crossed Russia's border
 and returned to the Rostov region empty,”
Voronov says, adding that "no incidents"
 were reported during the mission.

Earlier, another 20 lorries returned to Rostov
 region -- leaving 100 tonnes of humanitarian
 help in Lugansk, also in eastern Ukraine.


Kiev's authorities have driven Ukraine into
an energy crisis --- just as winter  kicks in.

Shortly after a gas war over Kiev’s reluctance
 to pay Moscow for previously supplied fuel...
Ukraine is in a real crisis over a coal scandal.

A high-profile deal for the importation of coal
S Africa through the London-registered
company, Steel Mont Trading Ltd. has fallen
 through with a resounding crash.

After the first 250,000 tons reached Ukraine,
 Kiev stopped paying. Steel Mont Trading Ltd,
which purchased the coal for Ukraine with a
 loan taken on especially for the purpose, had
 to enter then settle up with the lender bank.
So the company refused to send any more
 coal from South Africa, to avoid further
 damage to its reputation.

Ukraine's Prosecutor-General’s Office is
now taking
criminal proceedings on the
suspicion of
embezzlement of state funds.

Fuel and Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan and
the head of the Ukrinterenergo company,
Vladimir Zinkevich, have been questioned.

'Friendly' Poland is refusing to supply coal. 
Economics Minister, J Piechoczinski,
has said publicly, that Ukraine would like
have Polish coal for nothing.

Kiev adviser Prodan:

“the coal supply situation looks really
dangerous and the country will have
great trouble
getting through the
autumn and winter period.”

 He says Kiev has no option left other than
to try
to purchase coal from Russia or the
proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic.

At the Cabinet meeting the Prime Minister
 Arseniy Yatsenyuk asked if there was any
 possibility of importing coal from Australia
or the United States. Prodan replied that
 finding an agent in these countries would
 take no less than six weeks -- and winter
 freezing is just around the corner.

The leaders of the self-proclaimed Donetsk
 People’s Republic say supplies to Ukraine
are ruled out, as long as hostilities go on.

The Donetsk Republic’s Thermo-electric
 Industry Minister, Aleksey Granovsky,
 dismisses the possibility of supplying
 fuel to anyone the Donetsk Republic
 sees as an aggressor.

Besides, Kiev has for many months paid
no wages to coalminers, and has also
the coalmines’ bank accounts.

After the recent decision to stop paying
& grants to Donbass residents,
Yatsenyuk will
have problems conducting
fuel negotiations
with Donetsk.

The Russian Energy Ministry says it sees
 no barrier to supplying coal to Ukraine
"on a commercial basis".

Until recently Ukraine was Europe’s third
coal producer. In 2013 Donbass
cut 83,600 tons, but a
military crackdown
on the South-East, has now
stopped the
operation of 145 pits.

Instead of looking for a way out of the
coal crisis
, Yatsenyuk has ordered the
Services to investigate “who's
behind the re-
division of the coal market.”

“The problems with supplying coal to freezing
 Ukraine is a precise replica of Kiev’s relations
 with Russian gas provider Gazprom. The Kiev
 authorities want to have fuel now, but prefer
to pay sometime in the future,
or not at all.

"Having received the first consignment of
 coal from South Africa they turned for more.
 In South Africa they were told: ‘Come on,
you haven't paid for the first one yet.’

supplies were cancelled,” an
adviser to the
chief of the Russian
government’s Centre of
Vladimir Averchev, says.

“The authorities in Kiev hoped that the whole
 world would rush to rebuild Ukraine into a
shop-window for the ‘free world’. But neither
 the EU nor the IMF have even the slightest
 intention of indulging in charity,” he says.

“In their policies towards Kiev, both the EU
 & the IMF proceed from their own analysis
 of the overall political situation there.

"3 weeks after elections to the Verkhovna
 Rada, no government coalition has been
yet. A standoff between President
and PM Yatsenyuk is getting
No economic reforms are in sight.
The military
conflict in the southeast of
the country keeps
smouldering. The
treasury is empty. The
authorities are
unable to honor their liabilities.

 "In a situation like this, Ukraine may
well suffer
not just an energy crisis,
but an utter collapse,”
Averchev says.


Ukraine Orders Closure of
 All State Services in East

Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko has
issued a decree, ordering the withdrawal
of all state services from the east.

A senior security official says on condition
 of anonymity, that this covers all services
 such as schools, kindergartens, hospitals,
 and emergency services.

“All structures that the state finances
 will be withdrawn from there,” says the
 unnamed official, adding, “Ukraine will
no longer finance them.”

The crisis in Ukraine was high on the
agenda at a summit of leaders of the
world’s 20 major economies, known
the G20, in Brisbane...

Western leaders there, criticized
Russia's President, Vladimir Putin,
accusing Moscow of involvement
in the Ukrainian crisis.

Putin’s foreign policy adviser, Yuri
 Ushakov, told reporters at the G20
 summit earlier on Saturday, that
 Moscow is not involved in the
conflict in eastern Ukraine and is
 not responsible for the escalation
 of the violence there.

Head of LNR: "socio-economic blockade
 of Donbas, an act of genocide"

 Igor Plotnitsky, head of the self-proclaimed
 Luhansk People’s Republic, describes as
genocide the Ukrainian president’s decree
 imposing a socio-economic blockade on
  the districts in Donetsk and Lugansk.

“Today’s decree issued by (President Poroshenko)
for a full economic blockade of the Donbas region
 is an act of genocide, designed to impoverish and
 destroy our people,” Plotnitsky stresses, adding
 that the Donbas population made its choice at
 their elections on November the 2nd.

“We're not going to sheer away from our path.
 We are going to live better than Ukraine, for
which, the power of the oligarchs will turn
out to be worse and more destructive than
any blockade,” Plotnitsky adds


Iraq army, Shia fighters,
 retake NE dam from ISIL

Shia fighters and the Iraqi army
 have managed to seize back control
of one of the country’s largest dams
 from the Takfiri terrorist ISIL group.

Army commandos & Shia Badr fighters
 led the operation to retake the Adhaim
 dam in northeastern Iraq.

"Thanks to the mujahedeen of the army
and Badr, we have taken control of the
site and have cleared it completely,"
Badr commander Kadhem Husseinawi,

The operation involved mortar fire and strikes
 by helicopters as well as jet fighters, and saw
 pro-government forces seize 10+ vehicles -
 including Humvees and armored personnel
 carriers - and destroy four others.

Iraqi army forces have also broken the siege
 on the country’s main oil refinery in restive
 Salahuddin Province, where security forces
 are also fighting ISIL terrorists.

The refinery, located near
Baiji city in
 the north, had been besieged by ISIL
militants for months. It gives 300,000
barrels of oil per day to Iraq, meeting
  a huge proportion of Iraq’s needs.

The ISIL terrorists hold large areas across
 eastern Syria, as well as in northern and
 western Iraq.

The militants have been carrying out horrific
acts of violence, like public decapitations,
against Iraqi communities such as Shias,
 Sunnis, Kurds and Christians.


Lebanese, Palestinian Resistance Own
Fateh-Class Missiles: Iranian Commander

An Iranian commander says the Lebanese
 and Palestinian resistance groups possess
 Fateh-class missiles developed by Iran a
few years ago.

Lieutenant Commander of the Islamic Revolution
 Guards Corps (IRGC), Aerospace Force Brigadier
 General Seyed Majid Moussavi, says that the late
 commander and head of the IRGC Missile Research
 Centre, Martyr Major General Tehrani Moqaddam,
 supported and helped Hezbollah and Palestinian
 resistance groups to develop missile capabilities.

Moqaddam was martyred in an explosion in 2011.

"Considering the range of their missiles, they are
 now able to attack all targets from the South to
 the North of the occupied territories," Moussavi
 told 'Qiam Sejjilha' magazine, Fars news reports.

"Based on what has been announced so far,
 their operational missile capability includes
a full, vast, but of course hidden, number
and type of Fateh class missiles, and this
 missile capability can be used and has
been organized," Moussavi added.

Commander of the IRGC Aerospace Force,
 Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, says
 Syria's missile-production plants were built
 by Iran.

"The missile production plants in Syria were
built by Iran and missiles designed by Iran
 are being produced there," Hajizadeh said.

He added that even the resistance front
 in Palestine and Lebanon, had received
 missile-production training from Iran.

"Lebanon's Hezbollah and the Palestinian
 resistance have grown very powerful in
this field (missile production) now," he said.


British Female Terrorist Reported
 Shot Dead in Ukraine

A British female terrorist suspect who allegedly
 fought alongside ISIL terrorists in Syria and was
 wanted internationally, has been reportedly shot
 dead in Ukraine, a Russian news agency reports.

Samantha Lewthwaite, 30, known as the
 “white widow,” was allegedly gunned down
 2 weeks ago, Regnum news says, although
 there has been no independent confirmation.

A source at the UK's foreign office told ITV
 News that “we are aware of reports that
Samantha Lewthwaite has been killed in

Lewthwaite recently fought with one of
Kiev’s most infamous squads --- the Aidar
 battalion --- condemned by Amnesty
 International for its unmatched cruelty
 in eastern Ukraine.

It was said to be “involved in widespread
 abuses, including abductions, unlawful
detention, ill-treatment, theft, extortion,
 and possible executions.”

She was reportedly a sniper for the group.
Her killer was also a sniper - allegedly one
 who travelled from Russia as a volunteer to
 fight near Lugansk. Regnum is reporting that
 the Ukrainians have put out a million-dollar
 bounty out on him.

The White Widow was deemed one of Britain’s
 and the world’s most wanted terrorists.

She left the country in 2009 before links to
 atrocities in Africa began to pop up.

Prior to that, she had been married first to
 the Jamaican-born British suicide bomber,
Germaine Lindsay. Her second marriage
was to a British-born Muslim extremist,
 who was reportedly killed in a shoot-out
 between two splinter groups within
Al-Shabab, RT reports.

She was also a mother of four.

In Africa she fought with the Al-Shabab terrorist
 group in Somalia, who were implicated in Kenya’s
 Westgate shopping mall massacre of September
 2013. It turned out she was actually the master-
mind behind the operation.

Witnesses reported a white female among the
 assailants. 67 people died at the as a result
 of her Westgate plan.

She used a fake passport to escape Kenya to
 her supposedly native South Africa. That was
 the last anyone has heard of her until now,
 when she was apparently spotted in Ukraine.


Palestinian resistance movement Hamas
warns Israel against the continuation of
 its siege on the war-battered Gaza Strip.

“We're saying to all sides: if the siege on Gaza
 and the obstacles to reconstruction remain,
 there will be a new explosion,” says Abu
Obeida, a spokesperson for the Ezzedine al-
Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas.

“We hold the enemy fully responsible for an
explosion if reconstruction does not begin,”
 Abu Obeida says, adding that “the fight is
 not over.”

Gaza has been blockaded since 2007, which
has caused a decline in the standard of living,
 unprecedented levels of unemployment, and
 unending poverty.

Israel heavily pounded the blockaded coastal
 sliver in a recent war that started on July 8th
 and ended on August 26th with a truce.

Over 2,140 Palestinians, mostly civilians,
 including women, children, and the elderly,
were killed in the 50 days of the Israeli
onslaught on Gaza. Around 11,000
 others were injured.


China partners Mexico
              14 Agreements signed               
 The presidents of China and Mexico have held
 official talks and attended the signing of 14 multi-
million agreements that represent a deep change
 in bilateral relations, says the Mexican president
 Ebrique Pena Nieto.

There was an official ceremony at the Great Hall
 of the People led by Chinese President Xi Jinping,
 who later held an official meeting.

The two sides signed 14 agreements of major
 importance, including the creation of a bi-
national investment fund of 2,5 billion dollars,
(rising to nine billion), allocated to companies
 of both nations investing in various sectors.

President Peña Nieto says that among the priority
 areas are energy, mining, infrastructure, high-tech
 manufacturing and tourism.

The authorization for operation in Mexico of
the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China,
 the world's largest, is among the agreements
 to boost cooperation between development
 banks, to finance and guarantee companies
 involved in big projects.


    Russian Spokesman Denies
            Alleged Military Presence in Ukraine               
Spokesperson for the Ministry of Defense of
Russia, Gen. Igor Konashenkov, denies Western
 reports of an alleged incursion by Kremlin troops
 into Ukraine, terming them 'absolutely groundless'.

Moscow no longer takes notice of the words
- lacking any evidence - of the commander
of NATO forces in Europe, Philip Breedlove,
says the spokesperson.

Reuters news agency quotes Breedlove as
 saying that the troops commanded by him
 witnessed the entry into Ukraine of a mass
 of combat vehicles, artillery equipment,
anti-missile systems and troops.

The National Security & Defense Council also
 claims to have seen movements of Russian
 troops and military equipment, though it failed
 to specify where the deployments occurred.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation
in Europe reported last weekend a deployment
 of two columns of military vehicles through
 territories controled by the People's Republic
of Donetsk, but it failed to specify their origin.

However, the second in command of the
 militias, Eduard Basurin, tells Novosti news
 agency that those columns belonged to the
 PRD, and justified their movement with the
 increasing arrtillery attacks by Kiev using
 multiple missile lanuchers Grad, Uragan
 and other heavy armaments.

They fired those weapons not only at the
 positions of the rebel forces, but against
 residential neighborhoods, says Basurin,
 in a report on channel 1 that showed live
 images of the shootings.

Russia's foreign Ministry reiterates that Moscow
 is not involved in clashes in southeast Ukraine
and wishes for a solution to the political and
 economic crisis there.


Reconciliation: Centre of
                Colombian Challenge for Peace               
 After his European tour searching for support
for the so-called post-conflict stage, the
Colombian president, Juan Manuel Santos,
 states that his biggest challenge today is
 to strengthen national reconciliation.

What is important is the word Reconciliation
 for a society that needs to release the ballast
of violence and move on, insists the president
 in dialogue with journalists.

"There are Colombians", he says, "who are
 afraid of peace - and I will not even mention
 those who want to perpetuate war because
 of their egos and political motivations.

As a result of talks in Cuba, the parties
reached a consensus on integrated rural
 reform, political participation, and drugs.


Russia Responds to NATO Challenges
                  by Rearming Crimea               
 Russia has responded to the permanent presence
 of troops from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization
 (NATO) in bordering countries by deploying air means
 and high-precision missiles with nuclear capacity,
 in Crimea, the local media reports.

An article by Viktor Litovkin, expert in military
 affairs, published on the RBTH website, warns
 that the presence of Tu-22M3 remote-control
 bombers in the airdrome of Gvardeiski, on the
 Peninsula of Crimea, in the Black Sea, is part
 of Moscow's natural reaction.

The expert explains that Tu-22M3s can carry
 cruise missiles, including those that carry
 nuclear warheads.

Another weapon that Russia has deployed on
 Crimean territory are the Iskander-M ground
 tactical operational systems, which launch
R-500 high-precision cruise missiles with a
 range of up to 500 kilometers and can carry
 nuclear warheads.

Litovkin points out that the ships and units
 of the Black Sea Fleet stationed there would
 deploy squads of Su-24 assault planes and
 coastal defense means equipped with Bal
 and Bastion system, which carry Uran and
 Onix antiship cruise missiles.

The reinforcement also includes self-propelled
 units of Msta-S artillery, launching platforms
 for Tornado-G missiles, Jrisantema-S self-
propelled antitank rockets, Pantsir-S1 anti-
aircraft missiles, Krasuja electronic war
systems and other means to defend Crimea.

Russia is concerned over NATO's expansion
 eastward, as its troops are already deployed
 permanently in bordering countries such as
Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania, a situation that
 didn't exist --- even during the worst times
of the Cold War.


 US Drone in Northwest Pakistan Kills Six 
 Officials say six unidentified persons are dead
after missiles hit a compound in N. Waziristan.

North Waziristan, since June 15th, has been
 over-run by Pakistan's army which launched
 a major operation there, to eliminate those
 accused of orchestrating acts of terrorism
 in Pakistan and neighboring Afghanistan.

The Pakistani army says it has cleared the
 rebels from more than 80% of the region.

US drone strikes are widely unpopular in
Pakistan and are seen as a violation of
 national sovereignty.

This attack implies that there might be an
 increase in the use of drones in the region
 in the near future.


Iran says missile program non-negotiable
 in nuclear talks

 Iran's missile program is non- negotiable in any talks
 between the Islamic republic and the powers, Brig.
Gen. Amir-Ali Hajizadeh is quoted as saying by
 Tasnim news agency.

Hajizadeh, commander of the Islamic Revolution
 Guards Corps' Aerospace Force, said the West's
 insistence that Iran's ballistic missiles should
 become a subject of negotiations is a testimony
 to the country's good capabilities in that sphere.

"They (Westerners) would have denied Iran such
a capability if they could," the commander said.
"But our missile power is non- negotiable."

His comments came against the backdrop of
 a trilateral meeting in Muscat, Oman, of U.S.
 Secretary of State John Kerry, EU envoy,
 Catherine Ashton and Iranian Foreign
 Minister, Mohammad-Javad Zarif.

The two-day meeting on Sunday and Monday,
 came just 2 weeks before a Nov. 24 deadline
 for reaching a comprehensive deal on the
 controversial nuclear program of the
 Islamic republic.


UN envoy to meet armed militants'
 delegation in Syria's Homs

Visiting United Nations envoy to Syria, Staffan
de Mistura headed on Monday to Syria's central
 city of Homs to meet with a delegation of armed
 militants in a rebel-held area there, sources and
 media reports say.

The pro-government al-Watan daily says the envoy,
who arrived in Syria on Saturday, will be holding
 meetings with a number of Homs-based UN officials
 and will also meet a delegation of the armed rebels
 who are entrenched in the rebel-held district of al-
 Waer, the last rebel stronghold inside Homs city.

De Mistura has recently proposed a plan for a
"local freeze of battles" in the northern province
 of Aleppo so that the focus can be shifted from
 military means to political ones.

Syria's leadership, while not officially commenting
 on the plan, appears skeptical, and sources familiar
 with the situation say the Damascus administration
 wants to implement in Aleppo the "reconciliation"
 policy it recently adopted in Homs, which could
 explain the envoy's visit to that key Syrian city.

The Syrian government implemented what it calls
 "national reconciliation" in several rebel-held areas
 in Homs. The opposition activists charge that what
 actually happened wasn't reconciliation as the
 rebels had already agreed to "reconcile" after a
 months-long siege by government troops.

On the other hand, the government says the
 reconciliation in Homs city was successful and
 could be repeated in Aleppo, where Syria's army
 is fighting intense battles to secure the city.

Ali Haidar, the minister of national reconciliation,
 is quoted by the al-Watan paper as saying that the
 Syrian government wants the city of Aleppo free
 of arms & armed men, through a wide-scale local
 reconciliation and a halt to military operations.

The minister demands more clarification from
de Mistura about his "freezing battles" idea,
wondering if the situation can stay the same,
 or might actually move toward establishing
 a reconciliation that could lead to emptying
Aleppo of armed men and weapons.

"We cannot have talks about areas where
 there are weapons, except the government
 troops' ones," he is quoted by al-Watan, as

Meanwhile, Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal
 Mekdad wrote an op-ed in a Lebanese newspaper
 on Sunday, saying the Syrian army will liberate the
 city of Aleppo from "terrorists," yet another sign
of the government's resolve to recapture the
 rebel-held areas in Aleppo.

Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi also said
 "the political solution in Syria will not eclipse
 the counter-terror efforts and we will not
allow the terrorist organizations to be part
of the political solution," a stance that has
 repeatedly been voiced by the Syrian


Israel wants to confiscate over 3,000 acres
 in West Bank ‘for military purposes’ – report

Israel plans to take 3,176 acres of Palestinian
 land around a West Bank village near central
 Jerusalem, say residents of the village who
were handed orders signed by the head of
IDF Central Command, Ma’an news reports.

Beit Iksa residents told Ma’an that the orders,
signed by the Israeli military commander in
the West Bank, Nitzan Alon, were distributed
  this weekend by the soldiers.

 They gave residents of the village until 2017
 to evacuate the land.

(Ma’an also published maps of the areas to
be expropriated.)

Soldiers deployed at the military checkpoint
 at the entrance to the village have also told
 the residents that a liaison officer will arrive
 in the village on Monday, to clarify the order.

Soldiers said a decision was made in 2012, to
 seize land for “security needs in this village,
 adjacent to the green line,” Palestinian news
 agency WAFA reports.

 They say the new order is intended to
reinforce a previously taken decision.

The IDF spokesperson’s office refused
to comment on the report to the Times
of Israel.

The village is an area of great sensitivity as
 it is situated less than a kilometer from
Route 1 – the main road from Jerusalem to
Tel Aviv – and is surrounded on all sides by
the Israeli  West Bank barrier.

 Israeli forces closed off roads leading to
the village in 2006.

Ma’an reports that 93% of the village is now
 under full Israeli military control, and the
land is, de-facto, already confiscated.

Villagers can't go to Jerusalem without
permits, and Palestinians from other
areas cannot access the village.

The mayor of Beit Iksa, Saʻadeh al-Khatib, told
WAFA that human rights organizations had to
 step in to help rescind the order, as it would
prevent scores of farmers from accessing
 their own lands.

The occupied territories of the Palestinian West
 Bank and Gaza Strip have been seeking full
 statehood and independence from Israel for
decades, with thousands of people having
 perished in one of the most prolonged and
 bitter confrontations in modern history.

The Palestinians have lobbied for full recognition
 as a sovereign state from the UN and the
 international community.

Palestine has already been granted non-member,
 observer-state status in the UN and it continues
 to push for recognition while Israel continues
to proceed with plans to build thousands of
 new settler homes in East Jerusalem and the
 West Bank.

More than 500,000 Israelis live in settlements
 in the West Bank and around east Jerusalem,
 built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the
 Palestinian territories.

Israel approved “an unprecedented” number of
 13,851 new settler homes during nine-months
 of peace talks with Palestine, an Israeli NGO
 revealed in April.

The plans were all in West Bank areas, with
 4,793 units approved for the construction
 in “isolated” settlements and 1,768 units
closer to the Green Line, which separates
 Israeli territory and the occupied West Bank.


Winston Churchill wanted to nuke Kremlin
‘to win Cold War,’ FBI memo reveals

A secret memo from the FBI’s archives shows
 that Britain’s Winston Churchill once urged the
US to drop an atomic bomb to "wipe out" the

 He reportedly thought it was the only way
to stop the spread of communism.

Churchill, Britain’s prime minister during World
 War II and again during the Cold War 1950s,
 made his views known to a visiting American
 politician in 1947, The Daily Mail has reported
in a preview of a new book, “When Lions Roar:
 The Churchills & The Kennedys” by investigative
 journalist Thomas Maier. The book containing
the secret FBI memo, is published next month.

Britain and the Soviet Union had been allies
during WW2. However, according to the memo
written by an FBI agent, Churchill asked a Right-
wing Republican senator, Styles Bridges, to help
 persuade the then President Harry Truman, to
launch a nuclear attack which would make the
then USSR "easy to deal with".

The FBI memo claims Churchill insisted that the
"only salvation for the civilization of the world
 would be if the President of the United States
 would declare Russia to be imperiling world
peace and attack Russia."

The Soviet Union tested its first atomic bomb in
 1949, much to the surprise to the United States,
 which was apparently unaware that the Soviet
 Union possessed nuclear weapons.

Britain’s wartime leader allegedly pledged that
 if an atomic bomb could be dropped on the
 Kremlin, "wiping it out," it would be "a very
 easy problem to handle Russia's balance,
 which would then be without direction."

Churchill, who served as UK PM twice, from
1940-45 and 1951-55, warned that if this was
 not done, Russia would attack America within
"the next two or three years, when she gets
 the atomic bomb --- and civilization will be
 wiped out or set back many years."


USA Under Review by UN Committee Against Torture                
 CIA secret detentions, the situation at Guantanamo
 prison, mistreatment of immigrants, and police
 brutality, are among the issues that the US will have
 to discuss with the UN Committee against Torture,
 according to reports here.

According to a press release by the UN High
 Commissioner for Human Rights, the US will
 be subject on November 12-13th, to a review
by the committee in charge of supervising the
 compliance with the Convention against
Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or
 Degrading Treatment or Punishments.

The authority in charge of monitoring the instrument
 adopted unanimously by the General Assembly in
 1984, to which 156 of the 193 UN member countries,
is beginning a new session at the Palace of Nations
 in Geneva on Monday.

The issues to be dealt with in the session include
 violations and illegalities committed by the US
 in recent years, in its campaign against terrorism,
 activated in response to attacks on Sep11, 2001.

According to the press release by the High
 Commissioners' Office, the extraterritorial
measures and the CIA secret detentions
stand out among the possible issues to
be analyzed with the US delegation and
representatives of non-governmental
organizations, as part of the crusade.

Other worries related to Washington's behavior
 are indefinite imprisonments without charges
or trials, at the prison built at Guantanamao
naval base, a territory occupied against the
 will of the Cuban Government and people.

The US interrogation program, investigations
and trial against those responsible for tortures
and inhuman treatment to prisoners, abuse
against immigrants, police brutality, in the
application of the death penalty, long solitary
 confinements and sexual violence in the Army,
 complete the list of issues to be discussed.


Palestinians clash with Israeli forces
in W Bank over restrictions

Palestinians have taken to the streets in the
 occupied West Bank, to protest against the
Israeli regime’s new restrictive measures on
 Palestinians’ entry into the al-Aqsa Mosque.

The Palestinian protesters held a demo at the
 Qalandia checkpoint, Beit Lahm and Hebron
 (al-Khalil) on Friday to express their anger at
Israel’s decision to deny Palestinians under the
 age of 50 entry into the holy al-Aqsa Mosque.

The Palestinian protesters engaged in clashes
with Israeli soldiers after the regime’s troops
 used tear gas to disperse demonstrators.

Meanwhile, Tel Aviv has deployed some 1,300
 soldiers to east Jerusalem (al-Quds) to tackle
 possible Palestinian demonstrations against
 Israel’s violations in the al-Aqsa Mosque.

Over the past decades, Israel has tried to change
 the demographic makeup of al-Quds by building
 illegal settlements, destroying historical sites,
 and expelling the local Palestinian population.

The European Union’s new foreign policy chief,
Federica Mogherini, has lashed out at Israel for
its growing settlements on Palestinian land.



RT, one of my favorite news sources, has fallen
 for a fake story put out by the Pentagon to support
the fantasy story that a SEAL team killed Osama
 bin Laden, who died a second time in Abbottabad,
 Pakistan, a decade after his first death from
 illness and disease.

This fake story together with the fake movie and
 the fake book by an alleged SEAL team member
 is the way the fake story of bin Laden’s murder
is perpetrated.

Bin Laden’s alleged demise at the hands of a SEAL
 team was a propaganda orchestration, the purpose
 of which was to give Obama a hero’s laurels and
 deep six Democratic talk of challenging his
 nomination for a second term.

Osama bin Laden died in December 2001 of renal
 failure and other health problems, having denied
 in his last recorded video any responsibility for 9/11,
instead directing Americans to look inside their own

The FBI itself has stated that there is no evidence
 that Osama bin Laden is responsible for 9/11. Bin
 Laden’s obituary appeared in numerous foreign
 and Arabic press, and also on Fox News.

 No one can survive renal failure for a decade, and
 no dialysis machine was found in the alleged
 Abbottabad compound of bin Laden, who allegedly
 was murdered by SEALs a decade after his
obituary notices.

Additionally, no one among the crew of the ship
 from which the White House reported bin Laden
 was buried at sea saw any such burial, and the
 sailors sent messages home to that effect.

Somehow a burial was held onboard a ship on
 which there are constant watches and crew on
 alert at all hours, and no one witnessed it.

Additionally, the White House story of the alleged
 murder of bin Laden changed twice within the first
 24 hours.

The claim that Obama and his government watched
 the action transmitted live from cameras on the
 SEALs’ helmets was quickly abandoned, despite
 the release of a photo of the Obama regime intently
 focused on a TV set and alleged to be watching the
 live action. No video of the deed was ever released.

 To date there is no evidence whatsoever in behalf
 of the Obama regime’s claim. Not one tiny scrap.
Just unsubstantiated self-serving claims.

Additionally, as I have made available on my website,
witnesses interviewed by Pakistan TV reported that
 only one helicopter landed in Abbottabad and that
 when the occupants of the helicopter returned from
 the alleged bin Laden compound, the helicopter
 exploded on takeoff and there were no survivors.

 In other words, there was no bin Laden corpse to
 deliver to the ship that did not witness a burial and
 no SEAL hero to return who allegedly murdered an
unarmed bin Laden.

 Moreover, the BBC interviewed residents in
 Abbottabad, including those next door to the alleged
 “bin Laden compound,” and all say that they knew
 the person who lived there and it was not bin Laden.

Any SEAL who was so totally stupid as to kill the
unarmed “Terror Mastermind” would probably have
 been courtmartialed for incompetency. Look at the
 smiling face of the man Who Killed Bin Laden. He
 thinks that his claim that he murdered a man
makes him a hero, a powerful comment on the
 moral degeneracy of Americans.

So what is this claim by Rob O’Neill about? He is
 presented as a “motivational speaker” in search of
 clients. What better ploy among gullible Americans
 than to claim “I am the one who shot bin Laden.”

Reminds me of the western movie: The Man Who
 Shot Liberty Valance. What better way to give Rob
 O’Neill’s claim validity than for the Pentagon to
 denounce his revelation for breaking obligation
to remain silent. The Pentagon claims that O’Neill
 by claiming credit has painted a big target sign
 on our door asking ISIS to come get us

What unbelievable nonsense. ISIS and anyone who
 believed Obama’s claim to have done in bin Laden
 already knew, if they believed the lie, that the
 Obama regime claimed responsibility for murdering
 an unarmed bin Laden. The reason the SEAL team
 was prevented from talking is that no member of
the team was on the alleged mission.

Just as the ship from which bin Laden was allegedly
 buried has no witnesses to the deed, the SEAL unit,
 whose members formed the team that allegedly
 dispatched an unarmed Terrorist Mastermind rather
 than to take him into custody for questioning,
 mysteriously died in a helicopter crash when they
 were loaded in violation of procedures in an
 unprotected 1960s vintage helicopter and sent into
 a combat zone in Afghanistan shortly after the
 alleged raid on “bin Laden’s compound.”

For awhile there were news reports that the families
 of these dead SEALS do not believe one word of the
 government’s account. Moreover, the families
 reported receiving messages from the SEALs that
 suddenly they felt threatened and did not know why.
 The SEALs had been asking one another: “Were you
 on the bin Laden mission?” Apparently, none were.
 And to keep this a secret, the SEALs were sent to
 their deaths.

Anyone who believes anything the US government
says is gullible beyond the meaning of the word.

Paul Craig Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary
 of the US Treasury and Associate Editor of the Wall
 Street Journal. His latest book is 'How America
 Was Lost'.


    UK Ends Libyan Army Course After Sex Attacks    
More than 300 members of the Libyan armed forces
 training in the UK, have been sent home early, after
five soldiers appeared in court, accused of sex

Members of the country's armed forces have been
 based at Bassingbourn Barracks in Cambridgeshire
 since July, as part of the UK's "pledge" to support
 the Libyan government imposed by force.

The group had been due to return to their homeland
 at the end of this month but their stay has been cut
 short, after a series of alleged sexual attacks.

There had been plans to train about 2,000 Libyan
 troops at Bassingbourn.


Republican Party has Both Houses of US Congress

Republican legislators kept control by a large
 majority over their democrat party opponents
 in the mid-term elections held on Tuesday.


Nearly two million Hong Kong Citizens
 Oppose the Protest Movement

 The Hong Kong Alliance for Peace & Democracy
has collected 1,83 million signatures against the
protests being held there by followers of the
Occupy Central movement, since September
28th, it is reported today.

Reports from the Chinese special administrative
 region located in the south, reveal that Alliance
 representatives delivered a petition to the Chief
 Secretary of Hong Kong, Carrie Lam, signed by
 1.83 million people in the territory.

Speaking to the press, Lam says the Hong Kong
 government will not allow these protests, which
 have disrupted life in the special administrative
 region, blocking roads, causing businesses to
 close and preventing access to public buildings.

The Hong Kong government is to review the
situation and take measures to solve the
problem in the right time, says the official
-- as quoted by newspapers in Beijing.

Robert Chow, a spokesperson for the Alliance
 for Peace and Democracy, says the signatures,
 collected between October 25 and November 2,
 reflect the prevailing trend and strong popular
 support for the actions of the police to enforce
 the law and return the streets to all citizens.

Another spokesperson, Stanley Ng, says the
 majority indicate that they want public order
 and the restoration of the rule of law.

This popular nine-day campaign got 1.34
 million signatures in the streets and the
rest on the internet, say the organizers.

Protests are against a Chinese parliamentary
 agreement on how to nominate candidates to
 stand in 2017, for Hong Kong's chief executive.

The elections will be held under universal suffrage
 on the basis of a nomination committee preparing
broad citizen representation, a procedure opposed
by the Central Occupation movement.

Attempts to negotiate a settlement to the situation
 by the Hong Kong government have failed, due to
the intransigence of members of this movement,
 mostly composed of groups of students.


Over 20 civilians killed in shelling by
Ukrainian army in Luhansk — acting police chief

The Ukrainian army constantly violates the ceasefire
 regime, acting LPR people’s police commander, Oleg
 Bugrov, says.

The Ukrainian army has been shelling civilian areas
in the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic
(LPR) since Monday evening, acting LPR people’s
police commander, Oleg Bugrov, says.

“It started Monday evening. The Ukrainian armed
 forces delivered an artillery strike in violation of all
 agreements established by the Minsk memorandum.

“They delivered strikes with Grad and Uragan
 (multiple launch rocket systems) on Kirovsk,
 Frunze, Stakhanov. Civilians died,” Bugrov says.

He adds that the LPR people’s police are ready
 for the Ukrainian army attacks.

“The Ukrainian army constantly violates the
ceasefire regime,” he says.

According to the UN, over 4,000 people have been
 killed and hundreds of thousands have fled Ukraine’s
 war-torn south-east, as a result of clashes between
 Ukrainian troops and local militias in the Donetsk
 and Luhansk regions during Kiev’s military operation,
 conducted since mid-April, to regain control over the
 breakaway territories.

The parties to the Ukrainian conflict agreed on a
 ceasefire at talks mediated by the Organization
 for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE)
on September 5 in the Belarusian capital Minsk.

The ceasefire took effect that day, but has
 reportedly occasionally been violated.


Anger in Philippines makes US Navy Suspend Visit 

The US Navy is suspending a visit to the Philippine
 port of Subic, aftyer public anger generated by the
 murder of a transsexual by a marine, a spokes-
person for the foreign ministry reports.

The spokesperson for the Philippine Foreign
Affairs Department, Carlos Jose, announces
 the cancellation this month of the visit of
 three other US ships.

Meanwhile, the president of the Metropolitan
 Authority in Subic, Robert Garcia, confirms that
the entry of nine US ships has been suspended,
 but 2 of them will reach the port for emergency
 repairs, while the crews will stay on board.

The alleged murder of transsexual Jennifer Laude,
by a first class US marine, Joseph S. Pemberton,
revived anti-US feeling in this Asian archipelago.

Pemberton had just been on a joint military
 drill and was the last person Laude was
with, in a cheap hotel, in Olongapo city.

An hour after his stay employees found
 the transsexual dead, say the police.

The marine is being held in jail in a military
 barracks in this capital waiting for the trial.

Local groups have demonstrated against
 the presence of the Army in the ancient
city, and various streets protests have
 occurred for this reason.

The US has managed to reactivate a security
 agreement with the Philippines, whereby the
 Pentagon can enjoy naval facilities in the
Asian nation again, but this recent episode
could stop a return, although the Philippine
 government has said it will not renegotiate
 the deal.


Cent Africa Rep: Over 2.3 Million
Children Affected by Violence    
Over 2.3 million children in the Central African
 Republic (CAR) are victims of the crisis which
 began almost a year ago, in the capital.

The United Nations International Children's
 Emergency Fund (UNICEF) says that even
 pregnant women have remained without
 access to hospitals, due to the blocking
 of roads.

Judith Leveillee, UNICEF deputy representative
 for CAR, has recently stated that they will not
allow threats to halt the work they perform to
 protect children.

She said that attacks without precedent against
 humanitarian workers in CAR have been staged.

Organizations like Doctors Without Borders
(Medecins sans Frontiers) have also expressed
 the powerlessness they feel, as they cannot
 aid civilians.

Clashes between ethnic groups and attacks on
civilians, which have claimed hundreds of lives
since 2013, worsen the humanitarian issues in
 the Central African Republic.


Russia, EU disagree over east Ukraine elections

Russia has been at loggerheads with the European
 Union over presidential and parliamentary elections
 in eastern Ukraine.

Moscow says it “respects" the results
 of local elections in eastern Ukraine,
 but the EU says they're an “obstacle”
 to peace.

Russia says it recognizes the results of
 the election, adding that the vote will help
to re-establish "normal life in the region."

    “We respect the expression of the will of
 the residents of the southeast,” the Russian
 Foreign Ministry says in a statement, adding:

 “Those elected have received a mandate
 to resolve the practical issues of re-
establishing normal life in the region.”

The EU's newly appointed foreign policy
 chief, Federica Mogherini, rejects the vote
 as “illegal and illegitimate,” saying, “the
 European Union will not recognize it.”

“I consider today's presidential and
parliamentary elections in Donetsk and
Luhansk People's Republics, to be a new
 obstacle on the path towards peace in
 Ukraine,” Mogherini states.

The United States said on Friday that
 it would not recognize the elections.

"We deplore the intent of separatists in parts
 of eastern Ukraine to hold illegitimate so-
called local elections on Sunday," White
 House National Security Council spokes-
person, Bernadette Meehan, said then.

Ukraine has also dismissed the vote and
opened a criminal investigation into it with
 the country’s pro-Western President Petro
 Poroshenko calling the elections “pseudo-
elections that terrorists and bandits want
 to organize on occupied territory.”

Exit polls in the self-proclaimed republics of
 Donetsk and Luhansk in eastern Ukraine
 show that Alexander Zakharchenko, the
prime minister of the Donetsk People's
 Republic, and his party, are on course to
 win both presidential and parliamentary
 elections --- with over 81% of the vote.

The pro-Russia forces have also refused
to recognize the results of Ukraine’s snap
 parliamentary elections held on October 26.

Tensions heightened after the Coup D'Etat
promoted by the US last year which replaced
 the legitimate President Yanoukovich and
installed a pro-Western puppet, Poroshenko.

Ukraine’s mainly Russian-speaking regions
became the scene of deadly clashes between
 the anti-pro-Western coup protesters and the
 Ukrainian National Guard, after the Kiev coup
government launched a military operation, in
mid-April, in a bid to crush the protests.

Violence intensified in May, after the two
 regions of Donetsk and Luhansk held local
 referendums in which their residents voted
 overwhelmingly in favor of independence
 and then, to join the Russian Federation.

Ukraine’s Black Sea peninsula of Crimea
 joined the Russian Federation, following
a referendum, in March.


UN General Assembly must intervene
 to stop Israeli HR violations: Academic
The international community must move to stop
 violations of human rights and basic international
 laws by the Israeli regime, says an academic.

“It is about time the international community
 intervened to stop Israel's violation of international
law and punished Israel, whether through economic
 sanctions or diplomatic sanctions, for its violation
 of human rights and basic international laws,”
Mkhaimar Abusada, a professor at Al-Azhar
 University, says.

He says that a recent report released by Euro-Mid
 Observer for Human Rights, on Israeli atrocities
 against Palestinians during its onslaught on Gaza
 is a very “important step” in exposing the regime’s

Euro-Mid Observer for Human Rights earlier said
 Israel must be held accountable for using “captured
 Palestinians as human shields” during its summer
2014 military aggression against the Gaza Strip.

The Geneva-based nonprofit organization
 documented “at least 6 cases” in the southern
 city of Khan Younis, where Israeli forces used
Palestinian civilians as human shields.

It also said that Israeli forces “deliberately
and knowingly” targeted a large number of
civilians in Gaza.

Abusada concludes by saying that if the UN Security
 Council fails to pass a resolution against Israel over
its atrocities, the international community can go to
 the UN General Assembly under Chapter 7 of the UN
 Charter and try to prosecute Israel for its continuous
violations of humanitarian law.

A host of international bodies including Human
 Rights Watch and Amnesty International have
 accused the Israeli regime of committing war
crimes during its recent war on Gaza.

Israel started military attacks on the Gaza Strip
in early July. Almost 2,140 Palestinians, mostly
 civilians, including women, children and elderly
 people, were killed in the Israeli onslaught.
About 11,000 others were injured. The Israeli
 war ended on August 26th.

Tel Aviv says 72 Israelis were killed in the conflict,
 but the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas
 says the number is much higher.


Israeli Occupiers Reopen Al Aqsa
               Before Possible Popular Outburst               
 Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem was opened today to
 Muslim worshipers, after the occupation authorities
 ordered its closure and provoked accusations of
state terror, by Jordan.

The Hashemite king, Abdullah II, is the guardian of
 the holy places of the city and Jordan is one of only
 two Arab countries that holds a peace treaty with
 Israel, along with Egypt.

The suspension of the measure was enacted last
 night after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas
 called for a Day of Rage for Friday, the first holiday
 of the Muslim week, devoted by this religion's
 believers, to prayer and meditation.

An Israeli police spokesperson clarified that the ban
on access to the temple of men under 50 and women,
 enacted weeks ago amid protests over desecration
 of the mosque by extremist Jews, is still in force.

Al Aqsa is one of the three holiest places of Islam,
 along with the mosques of the Saudi cities of Mecca
 and Medina, and is located in Jerusalem (Al Quds,
 to Muslims).

Palestinians in the city, annexed and declared by
 Israel its eternal and indivisible capital in 1980 -
a decision considered illegal by the international
 community - congregate in the temple vicinity and
 pray five times a day, as set by the Muslim liturgy.

Tension in the city has grown since July, and was
 worsened at the end of August when groups of
extremist Jews desecrated the temple, and then
reached its peak after Israeli police killed a
 Palestinian in his home accused of shooting a
 US Jew, advocating the demolition of Al Aqsa.

The escalation of tensions after the announcement
 of the recognition of Palestine by Sweden, prompted
 a call for consultations with the Israeli ambassador
 in the Nordic country, and criticism from the Western
 powers on the statement by Tel Aviv's government
 that they will build another 1000 homes in that city.


Syria Slams Turkey for Allowing
 Foreign Fighters, Terrorists into Kobani

Syria accuses Turkey of violating its borders
 by allowing Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces
 and Syrian terrorists to enter the mainly
Kurdish city of Ain al-Arab (Kobani) on the
 Syrian-Turkish borders, according to
Syria's national television service.

Turkey is conspiring against Syria and has
 premeditated intentions to interfere in Syrian
 affairs by allowing "foreign fighters & terrorist
 groups to enter Syrian territory," the Syrian
 Foreign Ministry says in a statement.

The ministry refers to the Peshmerga as the
 foreign fighters, and regards Syrian rebels
 as "terrorists."

Syria says the Turkish move "constitutes a
flagrant violation of Syrian sovereignty and
 the charters of the United Nations, and
 international law."

The ministry says the Turkish policy is
 "outrageous," holding Ankara responsible
 for the Syrian crisis.

"Syria condemns and rejects this outrageous
 behaviour by the Turkish government and its
 accomplices --- for being responsible for the
crisis and for the shedding of Syrian blood
by supporting terrorist organizations like ISIL
 and the al-Qaeda-linked Nusra Front," it says.


’Israel’ Seals Al-Aqsa Mosque, Abbas
Describes Action as Declaration of War

Israeli occupation forces have completely
sealed off the Al-Aqsa compound for the
first time in decades since Wednesday
evening, after the shooting of a Zionist
 Rabbi, Yehuda Glick, in Jerusalem.

Hundreds of Muslim worshipers performed dawn
 prayers in the streets outside the holy site, after
 Israeli forces closed all entrances.

Israel's closure of the flashpoint Al-Aqsa Mosque
 compound to all visitors following the shooting
 of a Zionist hardliner... is tantamount to a
"declaration of war," President Abbas says.

"This dangerous Israeli escalation is a declaration
 of war on the Palestinian people and its sacred
 places and on the Arab and Islamic nation," his
 spokesperson, Nabil Abu Rudeina, quotes him
 as saying.

"We hold the Israeli government responsible for
 this dangerous escalation in Jerusalem, that
has reached its peak through the closure of
the Al-Aqsa mosque this morning," he adds.

Abu Rdeina adds, according to the official
Palestinian news agency Wafa, that Abbas
confirmed that “Jerusalem and its holy
 Muslim and Christian places are a red line
 and we won’t accept any harm to them.”

Abu Rdeina says that Israel’s decision to seal
Al-Aqsa mosque for the first time is “a brazen
 challenge and dangerous behaviour, and will
lead to more tension and instability, creating
a very dangerous atmosphere.”

The state of Palestine, he adds, will carry out
 all the procedures needed to call 'Israel' to
account and stop these ongoing attacks.

Abbas’ spokesperson urges the international
 community to “take action immediately to stop
 this aggression, because with such attacks
and dangerous escalation, “Israel is declaring
 war against the Palestinian people and their
 holy places and against both the Arab and
 Islamic nations.”



Brazil is to stop the colour revolution method
used by US capital to curtail rebellious states
-- by forbidding businesses funding "protests".


Elections in Donetsk, Lugansk regions
 to be held in compliance with Minsk accords

(There is a fair chance to use the elections
 to put the situation in Ukraine on track for 
fruitful dialogue and compromise solutions,
the Russian Foreign Ministry says.)

The holding of elections in Donetsk and Lugansk
 regions in southeast Ukraine on November 2nd,
 gives all a chance to switch the situation in the
 embattled regions towards constructive talks,
and Russia will contribute to that, the Russian
 Foreign Ministry says in a statement.

It adds that the position the leaders of the self-
defense forces of the two republics have taken
 on the November 2nd elections is justified and
 stands fully in line with the accords reached
by the Contact Group for Ukraine in Minsk.

“All references to the law on a special administrative
 regime for the aforesaid territories, which President
 Poroshenko signed on October 16th, and which set
the date of elections for December 7th, run counter
 to the Minsk accords,” the ministry says.

“Prior to the start of the Minsk process, Donetsk
 and Lugansk People’s republics’ leaders publicly
 outlined their negotiating positions, which in
particular stress that holding free elections on
those territories on the principle of the people’s
 self-governance, will open the way for joint work
 to preserve the common economic, cultural and
 political space of Ukraine,” the statement says.

“Russia will contribute to confirmation of this
policy by the leaders of the southeast who win
 the elections,” the ministry says. “We expect
 specific actions on bona fide fulfillment of the
Minsk agreements, both from the Ukrainian
 authorities and their Western partners, as
 well as from the OSCE,” it says.

“Today there is a chance to use the November
 2nd elections, not for a thoughtless, unjustified
 escalation of confrontation, but to transfer the
 situation to constructive channels of dialogue,
 based on mutual respect, and a search for
 compromise on the basis of a balance of the
legitimate interests of all Ukrainian sides, just
 like the documents signed within the framework
 of the Minsk process require,” the ministry says.



The Secretary General of the UN says
that the planned vote announced by
 the Donetsk and Lugansk regions is
"against the Minsk agreement" (sic).



The goal of Western economic sanctions is a
 “colour revolution” in Russia, Russian Academy
 of Sciences presidium member, academician
 Yevgeny Primakov is convinced.

"The aim of anti-Russian economic sanctions is
to weaken Russia, corner us, put into practice
the idea of a “colour revolution” in our country.

"Economic sanctions without a relevant decision
 by the UN Security Council, are a measure that
 contradicts global processes – both economic
ones aimed at developing interaction in the
 interests of all countries, and political ones
 which solve the problem of creating various
 systems of counteraction to the real threats
 to the security of the modern world," he says.



The Antares rocket with the American cargo
 spacecraft Cygnus has exploded on blastoff
from the NASA launch facility on Wallops
 Island near the Virginia coast.

NASA's website was broadcasting the rocket
 launch live. The explosion occurred straight
 after liftoff at 18:23 pm, local time (01:23 am,
 Moscow time, October 29th).

There are no immediate reports of casualties
 or damage to the spaceport facilities.

NASA says a special commission of NASA
 and the Orbital Sciences representatives
will be formed to investigate.

Cygnus was to stay in orbit until Nov 2nd,
then fly itself to the station so astronauts
could use a robotic crane to snare the
capsule and attach it to a berthing port.

The ISS, a $100 billion research laboratory
 owned and operated by 15 nations, flies
 about 260 miles (418 km) above Earth.

In addition to food, supplies and equipment,
the Cygnus spacecraft was loaded with over
 1,600 pounds (725 kg) of science experiments,
 including one to chemically analyze meteors
 as they burn up in Earth's atmosphere.


Russia to send 3,000 tons of aid
 to eastern Ukraine within week

Russia will send 3,000 tons of humanitarian
 aid to Ukraine's southeastern region within
week, Deputy Emergency Situations
Vladimir Stepanov, says.

100 lorries of the 4th Russian humanitarian aid
 convoy, carrying 1,000 tons of humanitarian aid,
are expected to arrive in Russia's Rostov region
 on Wednesday, Stepanov says.

"Within a week the total weight of humanitarian
will amount to 3,000 metric tons," Stepanov
adding that it will be delivered by
and land vehicles.

On Tuesday, 3 aircraft will deliver part of the
 aid to Rostov-on-Don city, the administrative
centre of Rostov region, where the supplies
will be loaded onto lorries, says Stepanov.

The aid includes food, medicine and construction
 materials to help local residents prepare for the
 winter, the RIA Novosti news agency reports.

But Andriy Lysenko, a spokesperson for Ukraine's
 National Security and Defense Council, says Kiev
 has received "no official information or documents"
 about the fourth Russian humanitarian aid convoy.

A spokesperson for the International Committee
 of the Red Cross (ICRC) regional delegation, says
 that the ICRC is not going to participate in this
fourth humanitarian aid delivery.

President Vladimir Putin said earlier this month
 that Moscow will patiently work with everyone
 to solve the problem of delivering humanitarian
 aid to Ukraine, as well as other issues, in a non-
confrontational manner.

From August to September, Russia has sent three
 batches of humanitarian cargo to the insurgent-
occupied territories of eastern Ukraine ---
 without Kiev's consent.

Moscow condemns Ukraine for deliberately
 delaying the aid deliveries, while Kiev and
Western states object to Russia's
 aid deliveries, for fear that Russia "might
take the opportunity to invade Ukraine."


         War Parties to Dominate Parliament in Ukraine               
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, declares
  victory for his party in parliamentary elections,
 while asserting that negotiations with more
"radical" parties in an attempt to create
 the ruling coalition... have begun.

Before the Central Electoral Commission (CEC)
 announced the official results of the elections,
 something that will occur Wednesday evening
 or Thursday morning, Poroshenko urged "all
Maidan parties" to join the coalition.

Poroshenko says any coalition will only exclude
 members of the Opposition Party -- made up of
 Yuri Boiko's followers and former members of
 the Party of Regions -- referring to those who
support a solution through negotiations, to
 the conflict in the southeast (Donbass).

 The CEC has validated the parliamentary elections
 with the participation of some 50% of the electoral
 roll voting, according to that source.

 Polls outside electoral centres have identified
seven parties as the ones to represent the
 Parliament... with over 5% of the votes cast.

Those are, Petro Poroshenko's Party (23%), the
 Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk's People Front
  (20%+), and Self Reliance led by Lvov's mayor,
 birthplace of extremist nationalism in Ukraine.

The polls also suggest that the Opposition Party
 (8%) and the neonazi parties Radical and Svoboda
 (6%+) and Yulia Timoshenko's Homeland party
 (5 or 6%) have gained representation.

Ukrainian political specialist Vladislav Gulevich,
 --- before the elections ---
deplored the demagogy
 of candidates who wished to be parliamentarians...
 but talked of war, and says that winning in Ukraine
 now, can only be achieved through Russophobia.


Poland to move thousands of troops
 to border with Ukraine

Warsaw is to relocate troops from the west
of the country towards its eastern border,
 due to “the biggest security crisis since
the Cold War.”

 It's a major realignment of the military structure,
 Poland’s defense minister tells AP news agency.


Russia ready to recognize Ukraine
 parliamentary elections - Lavrov

Russia is ready to recognize the parliamentary
 elections in Ukraine, but is very concerned with
 two "radical" parties getting into the Ukrainian
 parliament, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey
 Lavrov says to LifeNews channel.


Israel approves plan to build 1,000
 settler homes in East Jerusalem

The Israeli government approves plans to build
 over 1,000 new settler homes in East Jerusalem.

 It will expand two existing Israeli settlements
 on part of the territories seized in 1967.


Palestinian PM repeats
 firm stance on East Jerusalem

Israeli and Palestinian leaders continue to verbally
 spar as tensions escalate in East Jerusalem, which
 has witnessed increasing clashes between the
 neighborhood's Palestinian residents and Israeli
security forces in the last few months.

On Monday, Palestinian National Authority Prime
 Minister Rami Hamdallah, said East Jerusalem
is the "eternal capital" of the Palestinian state.

Hamdallah made the comments during a visit to
 the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem's Old City, in
 the company of Palestinian National Authority
 General Intelligence Service chief Majed Faraj
and Preventive Security commander Ziad Hab
 al-Reeh, Israeli media reports.

Hamdallah, who coordinated the visit with the
 Israeli authorities, accused Israel of trying to
 "Judaize" the city, according to the reports.

He was quoted as saying that as far as the
 Palestinian National Authority is concerned,
"Jerusalem is a red line, and so is the Aqsa

"We came here to say that Jerusalem is the
capital of the Palestinian state and an
important part of the national program,"
 Hamdallah said.

 "Occupation is illegal and illegitimate. All
Israeli measures and the settlements, are

The comments come a week after the European
 Union demarcated "red lines" for Israel regarding
 its settlement policy in the West Bank, warning
 Israel not to make moves that would jeopardize
 the creation of a Palestinian state.

The compound where the Al-Aqsa Mosque and
 the Dome of the Rock are located is called the
Temple Mount by Jews. The Jewish holy site
 of the Western Wall, believed to be part of the
 ancient Jewish temple, is situated at the foot
 of the mountain.

Israel captured the religious compound from
Jordan in the 1967 Mideast War. The Muslim trust,
 the Waqf, runs the place and Israeli security forces
 monitor it trying to enforce a balanced status quo.

 It's a constant source of strife between worshippers
 of both religions, and Jews are not allowed to pray
 at the Temple Mount.

Palestinian protesters often clash with police in
 response to Jewish visitors to the compound,
 and Palestinian and Arab leaders worldwide
 have repeatedly stated that Israel is trying to
 "Judaize" the al-Aqsa compound.

 Israeli right-wing politicians have pushed for
 laws allowing Jews to pray at the compound.

Earlier Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu
 accused Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas
 of partnering with radical Islamic elements in an
anti-Israel incitement campaign, centered on
 "false rumours" that Israel is seeking to change
the status quo on the Temple Mount.

Tensions have mounted in Jerusalem between
 Jews and Arabs since June.

After the kidnap and murder of 3 Israeli teens
 by Palestinian militants near Hebron in June,
Jewish extremists murdered a 15-year-old
Palestinian from East Jerusalem.

The past months have seen constant clashes
 between East Jerusalem residents and Israeli
 security forces. There have been also frequent
 reports of Jewish extremists attacking random
 Arab bystanders.

Tension has further escalated over recent Israeli
announcements of the construction of new houses
 in East Jerusalem and settlers moving into mainly
 Palestinian neighborhoods in the area. More than
300, 000 Palestinians live in East Jerusalem.


Brazil’s incumbent president narrowly wins election

Incumbent Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has
 secured over 51 percent of the presidential vote,
 narrowly winning the run-off election in the
South American country.

On Sunday, official results in Latin America's
 largest economy and most populous country
showed Rousseff led opposition leader Aecio
 Neves by 51.6 to 48.4 percent of the vote,
 Reuters reported.

“Thank you very much," Rousseff, who will
remain in power for another four years,
tweeted after the victory.

"We are voting for a more equal Brazil with
 more opportunities," Rousseff, of the Workers
Party, said in the southern city Porto Alegre,
 where she cast her ballot.

While Brasilia was witnessing the celebrations
of the incumbent leftist’s supporters in front of
 a hotel where she was due to deliver a speech,
Sao Paulo, a stronghold of Neves' Brazilian
Social Democracy Party (PSDB), was in a
subdued mood.

The government would try to lead "a national
 reconciliation process given how tight the
result was," Ideli Salvatti, one of Rousseff's
 top ministers, said, adding,  "We have to
calm our hearts down first and then get
 back to work tomorrow."

More than 140 million Brazilians turned out to
 vote on Sunday. The left-leaning Rousseff
enjoys the support of the poor, due to her
party’s social welfare programs.

Her government’s policies have helped pull
 40 million Brazilians out of extreme poverty.

The centre-right Neves is popular among wealthy
 Brazilians who want him to put the economy back
 on track.

Neither candidate could secure an absolute
 majority in the first round on October 5th.

During the first round, Rousseff secured 41.5
 percent and Neves received 33.5 percent
 of the votes.

Rousseff, 66, was elected Brazil’s first female
 president in 2010. Her Workers Party has
been ruling since 2002.


Russia Increases Military Budget
                  in 2015, Says Lawmaker               
The Deputy Victor Zavarzin, member of the defense
 committee of Russia's State Duma, confirms today
 that the country''s military budget in 2015 will be
 32.8% higher than this year.

Russia needs to modernize its Armed Forces and
 enhance combat capability and to meet this goal
 will raise defense spending to over 78,148 million
 dollars, he states, as quoted by the news agency

The lawmaker says that defense will be 21.2% of
 the national budget, compared to 2014 (17.6%).

Zasvarzin comments that no one questions the
need for the Armed Forces to be able to respond
 adequately to "new challenges": referring to the
 NATO expansion eastward and the deployment
 of its troops in neighboring countries.

The lawmaker stresses that the Army and Navy
 should have the most modern weapons and be
 able to achieve rapid deployment and wage
 modern warfare.

Recently, President Vladimir Putin stressed
the remarkable recovery of Russia's defense
 industry within the last decade, and held
that Russia will overcome the difficulties
caused by Western sanctions.


The UK’s 13yr stay in Afghanistan ends
 as US, UK hand over military bases

The US & UK’s military involvement in Afghanistan
 comes to a symbolic end on Sunday. Operations in
 the country are officially ended, as they prepare to
 depart by handing over military bases to Afghans.

In 13 years, the Afghans' economy has been
destroyed and replaced with opium production
and their army faces major battles with the
Taliban --- with little or no air support.


     Coercion at Ukrainian Polls Denounced 
 Yuri Boyco, leader of the so-called Ukrainian
 Opposition Bloc,
today demands  the removal
from office of the Governor of Dniepropetrovsk,
oligarch Igor Kolomoisky, who ordered armed
 groups to occupy electoral colleges in that city.

Boyco says this is an unprecedented situation,
 and denounces the fact that people will be
"forced to vote at gunpoint."

He has also presented a complaint to the media,
 because the number of voters is being 'reduced'
 where apparently his party has greater support.

A similar denunciation is made in a communique
 issued by Oleg Lyashko, of the extremist Radical
 Party, saying to President Piotr Poroshenko and
 the Ukrainian attorney general must dismiss the
 millionaire who was imposed as governor, after
 the coup on February the 22nd.

The neofascist Lyashko asserts in the document
 that Kolomoisky has agreed with bandits and
 assassins, to "betray the national interests".

The radicals demand a trial for the owner of the
 third greatest fortune in Ukraine, and for his
 Deputy, Gennady Korban, for a cynical attempt
 at electoral fraud in the southeastern city of
 Donbass, supported by mercenary armies,
and financed by Kolomoisky.

Ukrainian television says Kolomoisky recognizes
 that protection of the electoral process should
 be guaranteed only by the State security forces,
and that even Poroshenko has condemned the
 presence of 'voluntary battalions' at the polls.

Ukraine's Central Election Commission (UCEC)
 President, Alex Koshel recognizes that electoral
attendance will be "poor" in many areas, which
will cast doubt on the vote's legitimacy.


Iraqi forces retake two towns from IS

Iraqi security forces and Kurdish Peshmerga freed
 two towns in northern and central Iraq on Saturday
 after fierce clashes with the Islamic State (IS)
 militants, security source say.

In the early hours of the day, Kurdish Peshmerga
 troops, backed by armored vehicles, artillery and
 U.S.-led coalition aircraft, advanced to the town
of Zumar, some 70 km northwest of Nineveh's
 provincial capital Mosul, and fought fiercely
with IS militants, an al-Qaida offshoot group,
 Halkurd Hikmat, head of the media office of
 the Peshmerga forces tells reporters.

"The Peshmerga forces managed to enter Zumar
after they seized five villages around the town,
and the troops are defusing dozens of roadside
 bombs and booby-trapped buildings in several
 neighborhoods inside the town," Hikmat says.

"The warplanes of the U.S.-led coalition carried
 out many air strikes on IS positions since Friday
 and have killed many of the IS militants and
 destroyed their vehicles," he adds.

In central Iraq, the security forces, backed by some
 6,000 Shiite militiamen and Iraqi aircraft, managed
to free the town of Jurf al-Sakhar, some 60 km south
 of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, after six hours of fierce
 clashes with IS militants, a security source says.

The battle in the town was part of a two-day offensive
 that targeted IS militant positions in several areas
 around Jurf al- Sakhar, which stretches to the
 northwest desert land leading to the battle-field
town of Ameriyat al-Fallujah, the source says.

The troops and allied militiamen are clearing the
 streets and booby-trapped buildings after they
 pushed IS militants outside the town, he adds.

"The battles are underway and the troops will soon
 clear the strategic road between Ameriyat al-Fallujah
and the road that links Baghdad with the holy Shiite
 city of Karbala, some 110 km south of Baghdad,"
 the source says.

The recent advance toward Ameriyat al-Fallujah is
 a significant success for the Iraqi forces, which
will be able to push back the danger of any IS
 militants taking the besieged town.

Ameriyat al-Fallujah is the last major town ahead
of Baghdad that is under government control, and
 also located some 60 km of desert land north of
the holy city of Karbala, 108 km south of Baghdad.

If the militants seize Ameriyat al-Fallujah they will
 be closer to the Iraqi capital and will also be able
 to move closer to Karbala and then pound it with
 artillery and mortars.

In Iraq's eastern province of Diyala, Iraqi security
 forces backed by Shiite militiamen and aircraft
carried out a major offensive in the early hours of
 the day to clear three areas seized earlier by IS
 militants, Lieutenant General Abdul Amir al- Zaidi,
commander of Dijla Operations Command, says,
 in a statement.

Separately, U.S.-led warplanes launched some
 20 missiles late on Friday night on an IS HQ,
 just north of the provincial capital city of Mosul,
 (400 km north of Baghdad), leaving 150+ militants
dead and wounded, the provincial police chief
 says, by telephone.


Mistral delivery to Russia to be approved
 by mid-November - Liberation daily

A decision on deliveryof the first Mistral-type
 helicopter carrier to Russia will be made in the
 first half of November, the military observer
Thomas Hofnung writes in the Liberation
 Monde daily, citing an anonymous source
 from the French Defence Ministry.

“A moment of truth is coming,” the expert writes.
 “A source from the French Defence Ministry said
 a decision to deliver the first Mistral helicopter
 carrier to Russia, which it has paid for already,
 will be taken by mid-November.”

“Despite France’s hesitation over what the
decision will be, a high-ranking French official
 showed optimism last week on a relatively
positive outcome,” he says.

The 1.12 billion contract was signed by the Russian
 defense exporting company Rosoboronexport and
 French DCNS, in June 2011.

Under the contract, Russia is to receive the first of
 the two warships, the Vladivostok, in October this
 year. The second Mistral-class helicopter carrier,
 the Sevastopol, is expected to be handed over
 to Russia next year.

Mistral-type helicopter carriers have a displacement
 of 21 tons, a maximum body length of 210 meters,
a speed of 18 knots & a range of up to 20,000 miles.

The helicopter carrier can accommodate 450 people
 and a crew of 180. It carries 16 helicopters, of which
 six can be simultaneously stored on the flight-deck,
 and can carry several dozen armored vehicles.

France will have to pay Russia a penalty, if it
fails to fulfill the contract.


European Council Favors Application
                     of Ceasefire in Ukraine               
 The European Council states that it favours the
immediate application of the ceasefire in the
 southeast of Ukraine, and also considers as
 necessary, the holding of legislative elections
 scheduled for Sunday.

A communique by the European Council, which
 unites leaders of all 28 States of the EU, defends
 putting into practice what was stipulated in the
 protocol signed on September the 5th, and the
 memorandum on September the 19th, in Minsk.

The documents refer to a cessation of hostilities
 in Lugansk & Donetsk, where the regular army
 and the Ukrainian National Guard launched a
cruel offensive in April, that resulted in over
3,500 dead people, mostly civilians.

The statement by the European Council, also
 refers to the need to comply with the creation
of a separation area between the forces and
the holding of parliamentary elections in the
whole territory of the former Soviet republic.

Ukrainian troops have bombed residential
areas in Donetsk city in recent days ---
violating the truce agreed in September.


Rousseff''s Re-election Means
 Opting for a Better Brazil, Lula Says 
  The re-election of President Dilma Rousseff on
 Sunday, means avoiding the return of Brazil to
the past, and continuing the process of social
 improvement, says the former president, Luiz
 Inacio Lula da Silva.

Lula da Silva stresses that Rousseff represents
the Brazilian people, as the candidate of the
 Social Democracy (BSDP), while Aécio Neves,
 represents the interests of the bankers.

He warns of the contempt of the Brazilian elite
 towards the poor of this nation, who are the
 majority, and he says the elite do not want
 the government of the Workers Party (PT)
 or the current president to remain in power
 and daily improve the citizens' quality of life.

The oligarchy rejects all social achievements
 gained over the last 12 years --- the idea that
the poor occupy new public spaces, travel by
plane, or walk now, with their heads held high,
Lulu says.

The former president condemns the BSDP candidate
 for disrespect towards the head of State, in recent
 television discussions, and wonders what Brazil
will be like, ruled by such an irresponsible person.

Lula also notes that the bankers' candidate
 was upset because he called him "daddy's
boy", yet called Rousseff "frivolous" last week.

To give good treatment and respect towards
 a woman and a head of State, is a matter of
 education and good social behaviour, adds

Lula da Silva also blameS the UK magazine, The
 Economist, for publishing an article in which it
 bets on a Neves' victory at the polls, in order to
'ensure the growth of the Brazilian economy'.

"Recently a magazine called The Economist had
 the nerve to publish a story calling on people to
vote for Aecio (Neves). Is this magazine stupid?
 If bankers want to vote for Aecio, go vote for
 him --- but Dilma is the people's candidate,"
 he concludes.


Ecuadorian President, Rafael Correa, says that
the world order is not only unfair, but also immoral.

 Everything is aimed at serving the interests of the
 most powerful, he says, in a lecture fostered by
 the UN Conference on Trade and Development.

Correa questions the current power relations,
which have unleashed the emergence of a world
 where capital and merchandise mobility are more
 liberalized every time, yet the mobility of human
 beings... is criminalized.

He also says that neocolonial models persist,
 affecting the developing nations, with examples
such as the Agreement on Encouragement and
 Reciprocal Protection of Investments, which gives
 priority to the rights of the capital, and favors any
 transnational's ability to take a sovereign State
 to court.

According to the president, this organization should
 be changed, to build a world where the welfare of
human beings comes first, rather than the interests
 of capital.

He says that the integration taking place in Latin
 America is essential, as a way for countries to be
 able to defend themselves from neocolonialism,
 and the unfair world order.

Correa also refers to the development model
 implemented in Ecuador, during the People's
 Revolution that began in 2007, based on
what he describes as "modern socialism".


Israeli troops, Palestinians clash
 near West Bank city of Ramallah
Fresh clashes have erupted between Israeli forces
 and Palestinian protesters, who were furious about
 the recent death of a Palestinian teenager at the
 hands of Israeli troops.

The skirmishes broke out in Silwad village,
 north of the West Bank city of Ramallah, on
 Saturday, a day after Orwah Hammad, 14,
was shot in the head there.

The Israeli army says that the youth, who was
 a US citizen, was about to throw a petrol bomb
 at Israeli motorists.

“The forces fired immediately to neutralize the
 danger...and confirmed a hit,” says an army

Also on Friday, Israeli police in East al-Quds
 (Jerusalem) fired tear gas to disperse stone-
throwing Palestinian protesters.

Clashes have been taking place every night
 after Israelis said a driver, identified as Abdel
 Rahman al-Shaludi, rammed his car into a rail-
way stop in al-Quds, killing a baby girl and
injuring eight others on Wednesday. He
later died of injuries sustained from the
 Israeli troops' gunfire.

The Tel Aviv regime claims that the incident
 was deliberate, but the family of the 21-year-
old, say it was an accident.

Israeli media also reports clashes between
 Palestinians and Israeli forces in al-Quds’
Silwan neighborhood on Saturday, ahead
of the upcoming funeral of al-Shaludi.

The timing of his funeral has been set by Tel
 Aviv, which has also said that a maximum of
 80 people can attend the ceremony, Israeli
 Radio reports. The teenager’s funeral is also
 set to be held on Sunday.


Syrian troops recapture majority
 of key town in central area

The Syrian army on Thursday recaptured the vast
 majority of a strategic town in the central province
 of Hama, after battles with armed militant groups,
Syria's national TV reports.

Syrian government forces wrested control over
the vast majority of the key town of Mork in the
northern countryside of Hama, as part of the
military's ongoing offensive to dislodge rebels
from Hama's northern countryside, says the
TV report.

It adds that Syrian troops are "hunting down"
 the remnants of the armed rebels in the town.

A military officer says on condition of anonymity
that the military operation in the Hama countryside
 is aimed at protecting Hama city & Muhardeh town
 --- where an important power station is located.

The operation will also prevent the "terrorists"
from expanding their presence to the Syrian
 coast or the international road that connects
 the southern part of Syria with the coastal
 and northern regions.

Meanwhile, the pan-Arab al-Mayadeen TV says
that Syrian troops have fully recaptured Mork,
 while the oppositional Syrian Observatory for
 Human Rights, a watchdog group, says the town
has seen "violent clashes" in the past few hours.

The pro-government Sham FM radio cites sources
 from the town as saying that the militant groups
 in Mork sent distress calls to their comrades in
 nearby areas to back them against a crushing
 offensive by the Syrian army.

The al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front and other like-
minded groups captured the town in February
 after capturing checkpoints at its entrances.

 The Syrian air force has responded by striking
 the town several times, then by unleashing a
wide-scale offensive in the northern country-
side of Hama, in recent months.



Iran's former President and the present Chair of Iran's
 Expediency Council, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, says
 that cooperation among Muslim states, particularly
 between Iran and Iraq, is a requirement under the
 current regional and global circumstances, Fars
 news agency reports.

Iraq's full security & national sovereignty are Iran's
 best wishes, Rafsanjani says, in a meeting with the
new Iraqi PM, Abadi.

The Islamic republic is ready to cooperate at all
 levels with its neighboring state. Rafsanjani says.

Abadi says Iraq has always believed in Iran as a
 reliable neighbour. He urges the promotion of Iran-
Iraq ties in economic, cultural and political fields,
 saying that bilateral relations are rooted in their
common culture and history.

On Tuesday, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah
Ali Khamenei, said that the Islamic republic
 now fully supports the new Iraqi government,
the local media reports.

The current situation in Syria and in Iraq is the
 result of the "irresponsible policies" of some
 trans-regional powers and regional countries,
 Khamenei said, in a meeting with the Iraqi
 prime minister, Tasnim news agency reports.

Khamenei says Iraq's people and government
are well capable of dealing with the security
 problems in the country and have no need to
re-establish security with the help of foreign

He describes Iraq as a "great, important and
 influential country in the region" and gives
 Iran's decisive support for the new
 government in Iraq.

The Iraqi leader, in turn, appreciates the
 support offered by the Islamic republic, in
 Iraq's fight against terrorism, and says he's
 pleased to be visiting Iran on his first
 official trip abroad, after forming
 Iraq's new government.

The final approval of Iraq's new government is
 seen as a major step forward in Iraq, where
 an average of over 1,000 people die in daily
violence across the country, and in battles
 with the Islamic State militant group, an
 al-Qaida offshoot.


Four Blackwater mercenaries found guilty
 of killing Iraqi civilians
A federal jury in the USA, has found four
former Blackwater security guards guilty
 of shooting over thirty unarmed Iraqis in
Baghdad in 2007.

Nicholas Slatten was convicted of first-degree
 murder and the other three guards -- Paul Slough,
 Evan Liberty and Dustin Heard -- were found guilty
 of at least three counts of voluntary manslaughter.

The jury said they acted wildly on September 16th,
 2007, leaving 14 people dead (some sources say
 17 people died) and 20 injured. The incident also
 triggered international criticism over the role of
 security contractors.

The four were convicted on about 30 charges.

Slatten faces a life sentence for murder, while
 the other three, convicted of manslaughter,
could face 30 years in prison.

District Court Judge Royce C. Lamberth allowed
 the jury to announce the verdicts, issued after a
 10-week trial and 28 days of deliberation.

Prosecutors said Slatten viewed killing Iraqis as
 “payback for 9/11” and often “deliberately fired
 his weapon to draw out return fire and instigate
 gun battles”. The prosecutors also said that
 Slatten smashed the windscreens of passing
 cars, in Baghdad.

Blackwater Worldwide, known as Academi
now, and based in McLean, Virginia, is the
 most notorious private security firm that
 operated in Iraq.

Iraqis believe that the US military allowed
 Blackwater mercenaries to commit many
 war crimes --- with impunity.


ISIL terrorist leader is CIA agent: Chechen president
Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov says the ISIL
 terrorist group's leader, Ibrahim Samarrai, who is
 known by the alias Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, works
 for the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and
 is supported by western secret services' cash.

"Baghdadi should take off his mask and declare
 loudly and clearly that he is a CIA agent, that he
 has been recruited,” Kadyrov says, adding:
“They (the ISIL militants) are Shaitans (devils)
and their sole obsession is to grab as much
money as they can lay their hands on. They
are acting on orders from the West and are
deliberately exterminating Muslims.”

The Chechen leader calls on Samarrai to
confess to his atrocities, including the
massacre of Muslims.

“He must openly confess that he is killing
his brothers in faith, to apologize to his co-
religionists and disband his gang."

Kadyrov states that the western secret services
 have helped the terrorists by 'all possible means'.

He also warns those Chechens who join ISIL
 Takfiris, that they wont be allowed to return
 to their homeland.

ISIL terrorists currently control swathes of
 territory across Syria and Iraq. They've been
 committing horrific crimes there, including
 mass executions and beheadings.

A US Intelligence report published in June,
 said 12,000 militants from 81 nationalities
 have joined ISIL terrorists in Iraq and Syria.


Crisis in Ukraine stems from Western attempts
 to move division lines eastwards — Lavrov

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov blames the
 West for the
Ukraine crisis because of its attempts
 to move the Euro-Atlantic division lines eastwards.

“The Ukrainian crisis is a direct effect of attempts by
 our Western counterparts, to preserve and move to
 the east, division lines in the Euro-Atlantic space,”
he says at a meeting with members of the Youth
Civic Chamber, on Wednesday.

“We are against such attempts. We do not wish
 confrontation, but we shall be firm in defending
our interests and doing what we deem right on
the basis of international law. We believe that
 this is the optimal way of ensuring Russia’s
 interests," Lavrov says.

He warns against unilateral steps in handling
 the world's problems:

“The world today is getting polycentric and
 multipolar,” Lavrov says. “We are witnesses
to soaring competition in various spheres.

 “The awareness of this truth should serve as
 a warning against attempts by one group of
 countries to dictate solutions to others.
 This has not been eradicated yet.”

In a situation where there must be a common
 approach, we see unilateral steps undermining
 the success of our solutions,” Lavrov says.

“Over the past few years we have been able to
 see what this leads to. There was aggression
 against Yugoslavia, illegal intervention in Iraq,
and the bombardments of Libya. Now we can
 see that, in Syria.”


Official suggests extending law on special status
to more areas in eastern Ukraine

The head of eastern Ukraine's Luhansk region, has
 asked the Ukrainian parliament to extend the law
 on self-rule status, to other areas out of Kiev’s

Gennady Moskal has asked Ukraine's parliament to
extend the law on the special status of Donbass

to other districts in territories held by Ukraine's
government forces, but which are, in fact, out of
Ukraine’s control.

He says the authorities of 129 towns and villages
 in the region, have taken the side of the militia
 during the conflict.

Moskal has sent a list to Ukraine's parliamentary
 chairperson, naming all the districts, cities, towns
and villages that need special self-government
status, the region’s website says.

"All of these localities are in Ukraine-controlled
 territory, but it is impossible to hold meetings
 of the district, city or village councils. There
are no mayors or village heads. All of them
have fled to Russia, or are members of the
militia," the governor says.

Since local governments cannot perform their
direct functions, Moskal says it is necessary
to re-elect, or reset them.

There are 2 territorial entities in the region. One
 is the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic,
 headed by Igor Plotnitsky, and the other is the
 Luhansk region, headed by Gennady Moskal,
who was approved by Petro Poroshenko’s
 decree on September 18th.

The law on special self-government status for
districts in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions
 came into effect on October 18th and stays
 in force for three years.

 The decree, approved by Ukraine's Duma,
 guarantees that Donbass' people will not
be persecuted by Ukraine's authorities,
 for participating in the conflict.


    Russian Relations with USA at Dead End, Says Lavrov              
 Relations between Russia and the United States
are complex and are currently at a dead end in
 several fields and this developed long before the
 Ukrainian crisis, says Russia's Foreign Minister,
 Sergei Lavrov.

The foreign minister criticizes the state of bilateral
 relations in an interview broadcast by the television
 station NTV, in which he deplores that proposals by
 their US 'partners' are mostly focused on the USA's
unilateral interests.

Lavrov says the international agenda is full of
 contradictory approaches, in which both sides
 have to find solutions to commit to on a series
 of issues.

Among these issues, he mentions... negotiations
 to reduce the arsenals of strategic weapons, the
 situation in the Middle East and North Africa, the
 Iranian nuclear program, and also the issue of
the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

The minister highlights the wrong approach by
 Washington, which wants to attribute to itself
exceptionalism in international relations.

It believes that it has the right to punish any
 countries that don't act as Washington wants,
and force them to cooperate on issues vital
to the United States and its allies, he says.

This imperial approach in international affairs
will be corrected, but the process will take a
long time, the foreign minister warns.


Pope Francis Lashes Out over
                  Terrorist Group Islamic State               
 Pope Francis today raises his voice against the
 group Islamic State, as an extremist movement
 capable of bringing a new dimension to terrorism.

"We are witnessing a phenomenon of terrorism with
 dimensions that were unimaginable before. It seems
 to have lost awareness of the value of human life,
 that people have no value and can be killed by
 other interests, says the Holy Father.

Francis regrets "the indifference of many"
 over the presence of ISIL in Syria and Iraq,
and demands "appropriate action" by the
 international community.

Speaking at a session to address the situation
in the Middle East and the role that the Catholic
 Church can play in promoting peace, the Pope
 expresses his "desire for peace and stability in
 that region".

He states that there should be "the will to
 facilitate the resolution of conflicts through
 dialogue, reconciliation, and political

The Pope has been warning of
 the danger of ISIL, for months.


Iraqi lawmakers approve full cabinet
Faced with growing threats from the extremist
 militant group, the Islamic State (IS), the Iraqi
parliament has now approved the full cabinet
 chosen by Iraq's PM, Haider al-Abadi, including
the crucial defense and interior

The appointment of Mohammed Salim al-Ghabban
 as interior minister, is a compromise after month-
long haggling until his powerful Shiite party Badr
 understood that its leader, Hadi al-Ameri, their
 candidate for the interior portfolio, was not
 acceptable to the Sunni parties.

As for the defense ministry, parliament approved
 Khalid al- Obiedi, an ex-officer in the Iraqi army
 under Saddam Hussein's administration.

Observers here believe that Abadi's selections
 could inspire confidence for the Sunnis, who
 repeatedly complained under his predecessor
Nuri al-Maliki, of injustice, marginalization,
and discrimination.

 They accused the Shiite-dominated security
 forces of indiscriminately arresting, torturing
 and killing their sons.

Observers believe that selecting Ghabban and
Obiedi also sends a message of relief to the
 Shiite community assuring them that satisfying
 the Sunnis will not be at the expense of gains
 they got after the collapse of Saddam Hussein's
 administration, since the U.S.-led invasion.

Abadi has formed a 'partnership' government
 that could provide a coherent, more effective
 political response for Iraqis to better confront
 their huge challenges, including an IS threat
to Iraq, the region, and the whole world.

Iraq faces increasing threats from IS militants,
who control nearly a third of Iraq's territory.

The United States and many other world countries
 are providing air support, weapons and ammunition
 to the Iraqi forces and the Kurdish security forces,
 known as Peshmerga, to help halt the advance of
the IS militants to seize more areas in northern
and central areas of the country.

The Sunnis are very instrumental in the efforts
of defeating IS. To win their minds and hearts,
 Abadi and his cabinet must address legitimate
 grievances and allow them to build their own
forces as part of the security forces.

Iraq is witnessing some of the worst violence in
 years. Terrorism and violence have killed 5,576
 civilians there, in the first half of 2014 alone,
with 11,666 more wounded, according to a
recent UN report.


Abbas says keen to keep dialogue
 with Hamas to end rift
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas
says he's keen to keep talking with Hamas
movement, to finalize reconciliation and
end the internal rift.

Abbas spoke at the inauguration of his Fatah Party's
 revolutionary council held in Ramallah. "Our dialogue
 with Hamas will continue until achieving we achieve
 full reconciliation," he said.

"The last agreement we reached with Hamas
is based on two major issues, forming a unity
 government and going for elections," he said,
 referring to the formation of the consensus
 government sworn in, in June.

Abbas added that east Jerusalem is a top priority
the Palestinian leadership, revealing that the
city faces settlers' assaults to divide and
 empty it.

Speaking about going to the UN Security Council
 to end the Israeli occupation and establish a state,
Abbas says "we want to gain a resolution that gives
 us the right to establish our state on 1967 borders."

Meanwhile, Fatah Party's central committee calls
 on the UK government to recognize an independent
 Palestinian state established on territories Israel
 seized in 1967.

Nabil Abu Rdineh, committee spokesperson, says
 in a press statement, that the Palestinians highly
 appreciate Sweden's stance and the UK House of
Common  decision to recognize a Palestinian state
 in the future.


Putin-Poroshenko Meeting
            Monopolizes Attention at ASEM Summit               
 The meeting of Russian President Vladimir Putin
and his Ukrainian counterpart Piotr Poroshenko,
will be the focus of attention at the 10th Asia-
Europe Meeting (ASEM), being held in Milan.

During the talks, the two leaders will tackle the
 thorny subject of peace in southern Ukraine,
where fighting continues.

Russia and Ukraine will seek to reach greater
 consensus about the implementation of the
 memorandum signed in Minsk, Belarus' capital,
 to halt battles, exchange prisoners and create
 a demarcation line 30 kilometers wide, among
 other measures.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President
 Francois Hollande and the Prime Ministers of the UK
 and Italy, will participate in the meeting.

The talks will also be attended by the president
of the European Council, Herman van Rompuy,
 and president of the European Commission,
 Jose Manuel Durao Barroso.

According to local media, Poroshenko has suggested
 peaceful measures but in practice, military actions
 against self-defense groups in Donetsk and Lugansk
 continue to be reported.

With the participation of 53 countries, ASEM, running
 from October 16th to 17th, will also discuss energy
 security, climate change, commerce, economic
 problems, and unemployment.


Egypt Denies Bombing Libyan Islamist Militias

Spokespeople for the Egyptian government
 deny transnational media reports, claiming
 that the Egyptian Air Force has bombed the
Islamic militia sites in Benghazi.


Russia Sets Up Cyber Units
               in Strategic Missile Forces               
Russia''s Strategic Missile Forces (RVSN) have
 started to create special units to neutralize and
 counter cyber attacks, the Defense Ministry says.

"The RVSN has been shifting its command lines
 to digital technologies. This is why the forces'
 high command is taking preventive measures
 to improve information security," RIA Novosti
 news agency quotes ministry spokesperson,
 Igor Yegorov, as saying.

The task of the digital units dubbed "Sopka," or
Hill, is to counter hostile attacks on the Russian
 missile force's electronic hardware and information
 channels, Yegorov says, adding that the country
 plans to create a comprehensive system by 2017,
 to protect the armed forces' infrastructure from
 cyber attacks.

Earlier in October, President Vladimir Putin said
 Russia has been under increasing cyber attacks
 this year and protecting Russian information
space against threats has been one of the
priorities, to ensure national security.

Russian Security Council secretary, Nikolai
 Patrushev, says the country's segment of
the Internet was attacked 57 million times
 in the first half of 2014, and some 90 million
 attacks have been registered since 2010.

Last summer, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu,
 ordered the drafting of 500 computer-savvy
 students, into special "scientific squadrons,"
 whose work will be counted as military service.


           Venezuela's Historic Seat in UN Security Council              
 Venezuelan Foreign Minister, Rafael Ramírez,
 terms as historic, his country''s membership
 of the UN Security Council, with widespread
 backing from the General Assembly.

In brief remarks after the election of the five
non permanent members of the UNSC,
 Ramirez recalled the campaigns launched
 to try to discredit his country, which could
 not prevent the support of 181 of the 193
 members of the Assembly.

"This resounding triumph is a result of a decision
 by late commander president Hugo Chavez Frias
 in Jan, 2007 to apply for Venezuela's membership.

 It shows the world continues to respect his
 message of peace, solidarity and social
 justice," says Ramirez.

In Ramirez' opinion, the vote also shows
the UN belongs to all states.

He notes that his country will be the first nation
 to share responsibilities as President of the Non
 Aligned Movement and non permanent member
 of the UN Security Council.

"We take up this challenge, determined to fight
 against the people's submission, domination,
 exploitation and foreign occupation and the
refusal of fundamental human rights," he says.

Venezuela, Malaysia, Angola and New Zealand have
all won seats on the United Nations Security Council
 for two years from January 1, 2015.

 A runoff vote is also underway to find out if either
 Spain or Turkey will fill the fifth place available.

The 193-member UN General Assembly voted for
 Venezuela by 181 votes, Malaysia picked up 187,
 while Angola scored 190 and New Zealand 145.


Donetsk Republic deputy PM praises
 Ukrainian president's special status law

The self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic
 intends to “follow its way” despite the law on
 Donbass’ special status, chair of the Donetsk
 People’s Republic Supreme Council, Boris
 Litvinov, says on Friday.

“The quintessence of this document is, if I
am not mistaken, that we’re entitled to hold
 elections to local bodies of power - to rural,
 settlement, district and town councils, on
December 7th.

"On the former Donetsk region’s territory, the
 city council has not been functioning since April.
 It did not hear the population’s request to put
 forward an initiative on Ukraine’s federalisation.

Nobody will elect a regional council. Nobody will
 elect new bodies of power with a special status.
 We’re following our way,” Litvinov says.

The republic intends to hold elections of its head
 and the People’s Council, on November 2nd.

“We’re following this way. We’re electing our
 supreme legislative and executive power in
 the nationwide elections,” he says.

Earlier, first deputy premier of the self-proclaimed
 Donetsk People’s Republic, Andrei Purgin, said
that the signing of the law on special status for
Donbass - the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in
 eastern Ukraine, seeking independence from
 Kiev - is a positive step.

“I believe this is a positive step but it does not
 influence the political situation. It’s certainly a plus.
It means that the party of peace and not the party
 of war is winning. The law has its plusses and
 meeting points,” Purgin said.

“We positively assess the fact that Ukraine is
 moving to meet us halfway but it doesn't change
 our position on the political aspects,” he said.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a
 law on special status for Donbass on Thursday,
 October 16th.

The document is stipulated by agreements reached
 in the Belarusian capital, Minsk, in early September.
 The special status is granted for three years.

“During this time we will have an opportunity to
 turn into reality issues of deep decentralisation
 which should be also an issue for amending the
 Constitution,” Poroshenko said then.


Ukraine’s third defense minister in six months
 "sure sign military is demoralized"

The resignation of Ukraine’s Defense Minister Valery
 Heletey, appointed just three months ago, and the
 nomination and approval of his successor, National
 Guard commander Stepan Poltorak, is evidence of
personnel chaos in the armed forces, amateurism
 by the authorities and demoralization in the military,
 the president of the Geopolitical Problems Academy,
 Doctor of Military Science, Konstantin Sivkov, says.

"Poltorak is a man from Interior Minister Arsen
 Avakov’s team. For a while he was commander
of all Interior Ministry troops. As for Heletey,
 he's from President Poroshenko’s inner circle
 -- as a matter of fact, his personal bodyguard.

 "He used to be in charge of Ukraine’s agency
 responsible for the security of senior officials.
 Poltorak’s nomination is sure evidence of the
 continuing under-the-carpet struggle for
control of the army,” Sivkov believes.

“The way Poltorak commanded the National Guard
 in the so-called “anti-terrorist operation” zone, in
the south-east of Ukraine, is well seen in the
 operation’s utter failure.

"On Monday, about 1,500 national guards - Poltorak’s
 subordinates just recently - staged a mutiny. They
marched into the capital Kiev, chanting “Demob!
 Demob!” and met in front of the presidential office
 to demand demobilization and cash compensation
 for the excessive time they have spent in service,"
 Sivkov says.

"Also, some National Guard members fear they
 may bear criminal responsibility for participation
 in the so-called “anti-terrorist operation."

"Apart from conscripts, the National Guard is manned
 by volunteers, many of whom have a criminal past.

"These are the sort of men that Poltorak was in
 command of, and this characterises him well
 enough. It is no accident that Heletey’s dismissal
 and Poltorak’s appointment, drew rather caustic
 remarks in the press - such as - 'Bodyguard Goes,
Gendarme Takes Over,'" Sivkov says.

The now dismissed Heletey, (in his brief career)
 earned dubious publicity, by declaring plans for
 an early victory parade in Sevastopol and a huge
military march through Kiev... just as hundreds
 of Ukrainian regular troops and members of
 volunteer battalions were being encircled near
Ilovaisk in the east and killed," Sivkov recalls.

"In the run-up to the October 26th parliamentary
 elections, President Poroshenko, as commander-
in-chief had to sacrifice Heletey. While addressing
 the legislators on Tuesday Poroshenko urged them
 to ‘leave criticism of the army outside the scope
 of the election campaign."

"The Kiev authorities’ decision to appoint a third
 defense minister in six months is evidence of the
utter degradation of Ukraine’s political & military
 elite. In a normal political system, defence
ministers are not changed every now and then.

 "The personnel reshuffles have adverse effects
on the condition of the armed forces. This shows
that Ukraine’s political system is off balance,"
Sivkov believes.

"Both officers and the rank-and-file are reluctant
to fight against their own people. They are now
 demoralized and no defence minister will be able
 to bolster their morale and discipline, as long as
 there is no lasting peace in south-eastern
Ukraine," he concludes.


Hezbollah: To Direct All Capacities toward
Protecting Al-Aqsa Mosque, Sanctities

Hezbollah states that the worsening Zionist
 aggression on Al-Aqsa mosque, means that
Zionists now move without fear or shame,
 destroying its gates and injuring dozens of
 Palestinian worshippers who are trying to
save it from the criminal acts of the Israeli

The party says in a statement, that the Zionists
 feel comfortable because of the Arab silence,
 and the international complicity, and work to
 implement their plans, which aim at destroying
 Al-Aqsa mosque and replacing it with their
alleged temple.

Condemning the escalating Israeli aggression,
 Hezbollah calls on all to direct their capacities
 to protect Al-Aqsa mosque and the Islamic and
 Christian Holy places there.


Syria Condemns Israeli Support
                 for Armed Fundamentalists               
 At least 2 fundamentalists injured in a clash
 with the Syrian army have been transferred
to an Israeli hospital, where hundreds of
Islamic extremists have been treated over
the past three years, reports Sana news.

The injured Islamists were admitted last night
to Poria's hospital, Tiberias city, in the Golan
Heights, a Syrian territory occupied by Israel
since 1967.

In early October, two other fundamentalists were
 admitted to the Zif Hospital, in the northern Israeli
 city of Safed, and two others were treated at the
 medical centre in Western Galilee, near Nahariya.

According to press reports quoting Israeli sources,
the former provided medical assistance to over 380
members of Islamic groups fighting in Syria, while
the latter has treated nearly the same number of

Tel Aviv's support for terrorist organizations
has also included attacks on
Syrian Army
positions, Sana news agency reports.


Putin worried over growing neo-Nazi
 tendencies in Baltic states and Ukraine

“Regrettably, the vaccine against the Nazi virus
 developed at the Nuremberg trials, is losing its
 efficiency in some European states,” Putin says.

Russia's President, Vladimir Putin, is worried over
 growing neo-Nazi tendencies in the Baltic states
 and in Ukraine.

“Regrettably, the vaccine against the Nazi virus
 developed at the Nuremberg trials, is losing its
 efficiency in some European states,” Putin says,
 in an interview with Serbia’s daily newspaper
Politika, on Tuesday.

“A vivid example of this is open manifestations
 of neo-Nazism, which have become routine in
Latvia and other Baltic countries.”

“In this sense, the situation in Ukraine causes
 special worries. The February anti-constitutional
 coup in that country, was driven by nationalists
 and other radical groups,” he says.


Moscow opposes direct confrontation
 with West: Lavrov

Moscow says it opposes a direct confrontation
 with the West despite its hostile moves against
 Russia, as a joint international effort is needed
 to counter threats to global stability, Russian
Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says.

The remarks follow Lavrov's recent calls for
a "reset" with the United States and a series
 of measures aimed at defusing tensions.

"Despite the hostile behavior of Western partners,
 we still opposes sliding into the primitive scenario
 of a direct confrontation between Russia and the
 West," Lavrov says in an interview with the Journal
 of Moscow State Institute of International Relations.

"Russia is ready to continue contributing to the
 solution of cross-border issues, but there must
 be mutual respect & equal rights," RIA Novosti
 news agency quotes Lavrov as saying.

The diplomat stresses that only a joint effort can
 be effective in fighting global threats posed by
 the ongoing Ukrainian crisis, the Islamic State
 (IS), the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, instability
 in Afghanistan, and so on.

Moscow will, as always, try to seek agreements
 with its partners to secure a balance of interests,
as Russia's foreign policy principles are designed
 to pursue agreements in accord with Russia's
 national interests and the lawful interests of its
 partners, Lavrov says.

While blaming the West for causing the Ukraine
 crisis, the Russian foreign minister says this
 has seriously destabilized the international
order, and it will have a long-term impact.

These developments in Ukraine "are not a
 manifestation of any fundamentally new
tendencies, but rather the culmination of
 policies that Western partners have been
 implementing on Russia for many years,"
 he says.


Britain officially recognizes Palestine

The UK Parliament has passed a non-binding
 resolution to recognize the Palestinian state.

MPs voted in favor of the motion with a majority
 of 274 to 12 after a six-hour debate on Monday.

The debate was initiated in the House of Commons
 by Labour MP Graham Morris, who said the UK is
 morally obligated to take action, because of its
 history as a colonial power in the region.

In the debate, the plight of Palestinians
 was reportedly highlighted by many MPs.

PM David Cameron was one of the many
 government members who refused to vote.

The debate watched around the world, after
 Sweden’s decision to recognize Palestine as
 a sovereign state, which angered Israel earlier
 in October. Other European countries are also
 likely follow suit.

On November 29, 2012, the 193-member United
 Nations General Assembly, voted to upgrade
 Palestine’s status to non-member observer state.

Palestinians seek to create an independent state
 on the territories of the West Bank, East al-Quds,
 and the Gaza Strip and demand that Israel with-
draw from the occupied Palestinian territories.

Tel Aviv, however, has refused to return to the
1967 borders and is unwilling to discuss the
 issue of al-Quds (Jerusalem).



Ukrainian National Guard troops are protesting
 outside the presidential administration office in
 Kiev as they demand demobilization. They are
 refusing to return to their barracks.

About 200 soldiers have surrounded the building
 claiming they've served six months longer than
their contracts stipulated.

Soldiers are chanting, “Demobilization!” and,
 “All for one and one for all.”

They say they're not going to leave until the
authorities answer their questions. The key
one being, when they'll be able to go home.

Members of the presidential administration,
however, have demanded that the soldiers
 immediately return to their military barracks.

“Soldiers, come on, return to [your] military
units, we’ll figure this out there,” one of the
 officials told the protesters, reports TASS.

The Guards demand that they either receive
 better pay, or are allowed to return home.

 One soldier said they were paid roughly $11
 per month, adding that there has been no
 rise in wages since their contracts expired.

“I have served for over half a year. What
 are we: conscripts or professional soldiers?
 Then why are we still being paid $11.5 per
month? Show us a document saying that we
 can be kept any longer,” the soldier told TASS.

“We have already served for almost two years
and we don’t know how many more years we’ll
 have to serve: three, four?”, a soldier said to
 reporters at the scene.

Mothers of the protesting soldiers say their sons’
 rights have been violated, with demands addressed
 to regimental headquarters, thus far, being ignored.

Soldiers in Kharkov have also taken to the streets
 to make their demands heard.

“We were recruited for 12 months in the spring of
 2013 from different regions of Ukraine. Now 18
 months have passed and there are no signs of
 demobilization,” one protester in Kharkov
 told reporters.

Last week President Poroshenko said that
 demobilization is currently not possible.

"There are currently no possibilities for
 demobilization under conditions of de-facto
 military actions,” the President said during
 his visit to Kharkov on Saturday.

Poroshenko said that it will be possible “to
begin steps of demobilization” only when
 “there will be a constant ceasefire, when a
 line of defense is built, as soon as our teams,
 and this should be soon, will be deployed in
 full combat defensive order.”

The National Guard was re-established in March
 2014. The first National Guard's regular battalion
 was formally sworn in for service on April 6th,
 following three weeks of training.


Izadi women tell of ordeal

Over 2 months after the ISIL atrocities in northern
 Iraq, Izadi Kurd women recount the ordeals they
 suffered at the hands of the Takfiri terrorists.

According to the women, who managed to escape
 and be reunited with their families, they were sold
 as slaves or forced to marry the Takfiris.

“I was sold in Syria. I stayed about five days with my
 two sisters. Then one of them was sold and taken
 to Mosul and I remained in Raqqa. Those who didn’t
 want to get married were married by force, whether
 they became Muslims or not. They insisted on
 marrying us. Even offering to live together and
then get married,” said a 15-year-old girl.

Hundreds of women and girls were abducted by the
 ISIL militants following the capture of the Iraqi city
of Sinjar, which is mainly populated by Izadi Kurds.

Referring to the ISIL Takfiris, or Daesh in Arabic, a
 19-year-old Izadi girl, Amsha Ali, said, “I walked for
 four hours in Mosul. After that an Arab man asked
 me… what I was doing in the street at midnight.
 I told him I was Izadi and that I fled from Daesh
 because they wanted to marry me. He told me stay
 in his house and that nothing was going to happen
 to me. I went in stayed in his house for three days.
 After that he brought me to the Barda Rash

The ISIL attacks displaced tens of thousands
 of people, including elderly people and children
 who died when left stranded in the mountains.

Another 19-year-old Izadi Kurd girl said, “When
 they took girls and women it was a very sad
 feeling for me. I saw a lot of murders, murders
 of Izadis. I saw my husband, brother-in-law and
 father-in-law forced on the ground and murdered.”

ISIL Takfiri terrorists currently control parts
 of Syria and Iraq. They have threatened all
 communities, including Shias, Sunnis, Kurds,
Christians, Izadi Kurds and others, as they
continue their atrocities in Iraq.

Senior Iraqi officials have blamed Saudi Arabia,
 Qatar, and some Persian Gulf Arab states for
the growing terrorism in their country.

ISIL has links with Saudi intelligence and is
believed to be indirectly supported by the
 Israeli regime.

The United States started conducting airstrikes
 on ISIL only after US interests were threatened
 by the militants.


Christian clerics urge Europe
 to recognize Palestinian state

Top Palestinian Christian clerics have called on
 European countries to recognize the state of

“We are tired of negotiations while our people
 continue to be humiliated by an occupying force,”
 states the letter issued by the Palestinian leaders
 of Catholic, Greek Orthodox and Lutheran Churches.

"Europe has a moral, legal and political duty to
 hold Israel accountable and support Palestinian
 non-violent initiatives to end the Israeli occupation,
including the recognition of the State of Palestine
on the 1967 border with east Jerusalem (al-Quds)
as its capital," the letter adds.

The clerics’ plea comes shortly after Sweden stated
 it is to formally recognize Palestine as a sovereign

The UK parliament has announced its plan to
 hold a vote over the recognition of Palestine
 as a sovereign state on October 13th.

On November 29, 2012, the UN General Assembly
 voted to upgrade Palestine’s status to non-member
 observer state.

Palestinians seek to create an independent state
 on the territories of the West Bank, East al-Quds,
and the Gaza Strip and are demanding that Israel
 withdraw from the occupied Palestinian territories.

Tel Aviv, however, has refused to return to the
1967 borders and is unwilling to even discuss
 the issue of al-Quds.

Similarly, the US is also rejecting Palestinians’
 current initiative in seeking recognition.

"We believe international recognition of a
Palestinian state is premature," US State
Department spokesperson, Jen Psaki, says,
adding, "We certainly support Palestinian
statehood, but it can only come through a
 negotiated outcome, a resolution of final
status issues and mutual recognitions by
both parties."



US plans to supply weapons to Ukraine are not
 what is needed for a political settlement of the
 Ukrainian crisis, Russian Foreign Ministry
 spokesperson, Alexander Lukashevich says.

Lukashevich recalls that the Minsk agreements
 on a ceasefire and exchange of prisoners in the
 embattled southeast of Ukraine, point to the
 necessity to cease firing and withdraw all
heavy weapons.

“And such tendencies undermine agreements
 on the political settlement of the Ukrainian
 crisis,” the diplomat warns.


Sayyed Nasrallah: US Mother of Terrorism,
Morally Unqualified to Fight It

Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah
 says in a televised speech via Al-Manar channel, that
 the US is not morally qualified to lead a counter-
terrorism coalition, because it is the mother of


Air Raids Against ISIL in Syria
                 to Be Long, Says Pentagon               
 US air strikes against Islamic State targets in Syria
 will be long and need a joint effort by all US federal
 agencies and all US-allied countries, a spokes-
person for the Pentagon says now.

The bombings of Jihadists in Syrian territory are
 designed to limit their self-sufficnecy and training,
 but we must understand that this is an operation
 that takes time and patience, Rear Admiral John
 Kirby tells the CNN network.

"We need a solution that includes an international
 effort to defeat the extremists' ideology," he adds.

Kirby admits the possibility of the Islamic State
 taking Kobani, in northern Syria, bordering Turkey,
which has been defended by Kurdish units for days,
 but adds - the town has "no strategic importance".

The United States started an air campaign against
 ISIL targets on September 23, without the approval
 of Damascus, involving over one hundred attacks
 in that Arab country so far, with cooperation from
 Jordan, Bahrein, Qatar & the United Arab Emirates.



The situation in south-eastern Ukraine isn't
 a fragile peace, but rather a smouldering war.

 Tuesday, participants in an analysis meeting with
 permanent members of the Security Council under
 President Vladimir Putin, pointed to the extreme
 fragility of the ceasefire regime, in particular, near
Donetsk airport. This major air hub remains under
the control of Ukrainian forces conducting what
Kiev calls an “anti-terrorist operation.”

Several experts believe that the authorities in Kiev
are just simulating a truce, while in reality they are
 getting ready to launch another offensive against
 the Donetsk and Luhansk republics, possibly,
next spring.

In defiance of the Minsk accords of September 19th
 on the ceasefire and withdrawal of heavy weapons
 with a calibre of 100 mm plus from the engagement
 line, Ukrainian forces have continued to shell and
 fire rockets in Donetsk for the past few days.
There have been casualties.

“This isn't a truce. It's a harsh war, looking pretty
 much like the massacre in Bosnia-Herzegovina
in the mid 1990s,” a member of the Presidential
 Council for Civil Society and Human Rights,
 Maxim Shevchenko, says, after spending the
 past week in Donetsk.

“Over several days I saw three students killed
by an artillery shell, on a street bench. Two
 people were killed at a bus stop. four lost their
 lives during the shelling of a local school. And
twenty five were injured. That all happened
within Donetsk city limits alone,” he adds...

“The Minsk Memorandum of September 19th does
 not work. President Poroshenko does not control
the situation. In response to accusations of many
 continuing artillery attacks, the Ukrainian military
 says that some “third force” is to blame.

 "In the meantime, all artillery positions near
Donetsk airport are controlled by Ukrainian
 troops,” he points out.

“The authorities in Kiev are using the war in
 the east of the country, for their immoral
purposes — it helps them maintain their
rating with Ukraine’s patriots in the run-up
 to the October 26 parliamentary elections,”
 the analyst says.

“Poroshenko needs the truce in the east of
Ukraine, not because he wants to address
 the problems of Donbass and the Luhansk
 Region in a civilized way, but for a pause to
 get ready for future battles,” Shevchenko says.

“The truce in the east of Ukraine continues to be
 violated because the Ukrainian army wishes to
 avenge its defeat in the so-called anti-terrorist
 operation. Novorossiya’s militias are not going
 to make concessions. One has a very acute
 feeling the energy of the conflict has not been
 exhausted yet.”

“President Poroshenko and his overseas handlers
 at the US Department of State have not achieved
 their original objectives and they will not agree
 to any peace settlement in the region,” President
 of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems, Doctor
of Military Sciences, Konstantin Sivkov, states.

President Poroshenko’s September 24 decree On
 Urgent Measures to Protect Ukraine and Strengthen
 its Defense Capabilities, clearly indicates that the
 authorities in Kiev are hatching revanchist plots.

The decree declares the national economy is to be
 shifted to conditions of a “special period.” In this
 military language, the term “special period” means
 the introduction of martial law war preparations.

As official sources in Kiev say, Ukraine is
creating infrastructure for full-scale repairs
 and maintenance, as well as the manufacture
 of, military hardware.

“While preparations for another offensive are
 still underway, Poroshenko will keep the
situation in the east of Ukraine suspended:
 neither peace nor war. The resumption of
 military operations will depend entirely on
when the logistics of the Kiev-controlled
armed forces become strong enough,” the
 military expert says.



The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine
 (SMM), deployed since late March, will continue
 observing the situation in Donbass for at least
 another six months, spokesperson Michael
 Bociurkiw has said.

Bociurkiw told journalists that 2 out of 4 drones
 are to arrive in Ukraine today to help members of
 the Organization for Security and Co-operation in
 Europe (OSCE), to monitor the situation in the
 territories where active battles are ongoing.

The OSCE mission, in line with the Minsk agreement
 reached at the OSCE-mediated talks on September 5,
 is to control the ceasefire regime in eastern Ukraine.

Twenty-five new members of the OSCE mission
 arrived in Ukraine in late September to join 78
 monitors working in the Donetsk and Lugansk
 regions, Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokes-
person Yevgeny Perebeinos said.

Under the mandate, the mission initially consists
 of 100 monitors, but may expand by a total of up
 to 400 additional monitors... depending on
 developments in the country.


'Western Powers Plan to Dominate Region'
                 ---  Ruling Syrian Party               
 Syria's ruling Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party denounces
 the plans of Western powers and Israel to reshape
 the Middle East and steal its wealth, particularly oil.

In a communique on the 41st anniversary of the October
 War, known here as the Yom Kippur War, the party states
 that the conflict triggered by various countries against
 Syria, is aimed at weakening its role in the region.

The document says that the party will continue actions
 against Takfirists (Sunni extremists) in all their forms.

It also expresses support for any honest international
 effort to fight terrorism, which is based on respect for
 Syrian sovereignty and accords with international law.


Brazil holds peaceful elections on Sunday

Brazil held its general elections on Sunday, to
 choose a new president, state governors, federal
 & state representatives & a third of the senators.

Dilma Rousseff, the first female Brazilian president
 elected four years ago was leading in opinion polls,
 but another female politician, former environment
 minister Marina Silva, is a strong challenger.

Rousseff to face Neves in Brazil election
 runoff – exit poll

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff and her closest
 challenger, Aecio Neves, are likely to compete in
 a runoff to decide who wins Brazil’s presidential
election, according to the latest exit
poll results
and a preliminary vote count.

The poll of 64,200 voters, released by TV Globo and
 conducted by public research firm Ibope, showed
 Rousseff leading with 44% of votes, followed by
Neves with 30% and Marina Silva with 22%.

 The preliminary count shows Rousseff
with an
even smaller lead, (40.36%), while Neves
35.23%, Brazil’s electoral authority says,

 according to Reuters.

 (The preliminary figures reflect the vote
after 75% of ballots were counted.)

As none of the 3 front-runner candidates looks
likely to get over 50% of the votes, a run-off is
expected to be held on October 26th.

Silva, presidential candidate of the Brazilian
 Socialist Party, joined the race in the middle,
 as the running mate of Eduardo Campos,
 who died in a plane crash in August.

From a distant third place, Silva rose quickly
 and surpassed Aecio Neves of the Brazilian
 Social Democracy Party to be runner-up and
 is likely to proceed to the second round.

 Silva has to make sure that Neves won't steal
 her spot at the last minute. Neves started the
 campaign in second place, but was surpassed
 by Silva in August.

According to the latest polls on Thursday
 evening, he is technically tied with Silva
and has a chance to enter the run-off.

Brazilians will also choose state governors.

In Sao Paulo, the most populous state, the
incumbent Geraldo Alckmin was in the lead,
trying for a fourth term as governor.

 He may win in the first round of elections,
as polls show he has nearly 50% of support.

In the state of Rio de Janeiro, incumbent Luiz
 Fernando Pezao, has the lead. Runner-up is
Anthony Garotinho, a former Rio governor.
 Third-ranked Senator Marcelo Crivella, is
also fighting to face him in the 2nd round.

Campaigning on radio and tv ended Thursday
 evening, but candidates could campaign in
the streets, with no big rallies, until Saturday.

As Brazil has electronic ballots all over the
 country, the results of the first round, were
expected to be known on Sunday evening.


Right Sector threatens Kiev unless police
drop charges against supporters

The movement calls on other paramilitary group
 volunteers supporting the government’s military
 campaign in the east of Ukraine, to support their
 demands and oust “the helpers of the terrorists
 in police uniforms, from Ukrainian land.”

Interior Minister Arsen Avakov dismisses the
Right Sector’s threat on his Facebook page,
calling Yarosh’s armed forces “mythical” and
 the statement, a publicity stunt.

“Maybe it’s time to stop playing Robin Hood and
 stupidly putting in harm’s way the real patriots
 who believe you, Yarosh, for the sake of your
 patriotic snobbism?” the minister writes,
 adding that he sent the paperwork to have
 Yevdokimov dismissed, to the government,
 a couple of weeks ago.

The far-right group, which was at the core of
 February's armed coup that ousted President
 Viktor Yanukovich and installed the current
 government in power, has been at odds with
 the Interior Ministry for months.

The confrontation first erupted in March after
 the notorious Right Sector activist, Aleksandr
 Muzychko, was killed in a police raid to arrest
 him, from what police reported then, as a
self-inflicted gun wound.

Muzychko publicly taunted Avakov before
 the raid, and fellow nationalists accuse
 the minister of master-minding his death.

The coup government reportedly considered
 outlawing the movement at the height of the
 confrontation. However the military campaign
 in eastern Ukraine marked a resurgence of the
Right Sector’s ties with the government, as the
 group contributed to the creation of Ukraine’s
 volunteer battalions, to take part in the fighting.

Yarosh is now on a wanted list by Interpol
 at Russia’s request. Moscow suspects him
of inciting extremism.



Ukraine recognizes the Russia-ICRC
 relief cargo officially, as relief aid

Ukraine’s Minister of Social Policy,
 Lyudmila Denisova, has signed the
appropriate decree.


Ukrainian saboteurs confess Plan
  against Russian Humanitarian Aid    
Ukrainian National Guard (NG) troops
captured by the rebel city of Lugansk,
 have confirmed that their mission was
to attack Russia's humanitarian aid
intended for Dombass region.

The three saboteur members of a task force
of the NG hid
a load of arms and ammunition
in a
vehicle, reports the headquarters of the
 unified militias of the People's Republic of
Lugansk and Donetsk.

A rebel spokesperson explained that the
 arsenal was hidden in camouflaged food
 packaging bags.

The plan was to 'plant' mines on the local road
 and attack Russia's convoy carrying 400 tonnes
of cereals, 100 of sugar, 62 of foods for children,
54 of medications, 12,000 sleeping bags and 69
 electric generators.

In interviews, the commander of the mission
 said the main objective of the mission was
to prevent the aid reaching residents in the
 rebel areas of southeastern Ukraine, which
 is declared a humanitarian disaster area,
due to constant shelling by those forces
 still controlled by Kiev.

One detainee said that the Ukrainian army has
 sent seven teams of saboteurs into the Donetsk
 and Lugansk regions and that these groups are
 trained to ambush along roads leading to areas
 controlled by the rebel militia.

He explained that "security officers" were
 instructed to perform actions to force the
 convoy to return to the border, but without
killing the Russian rescuers accompanying
 the shipment, so far.

Spokespersons for the militia HQ cited by
Itar-Tass note that investigations continue,
on the remaining orders of the saboteurs.

The Russian Foreign Ministry denounces the
 attempts to obstruct delivery of humanitarian
 aid sent by Moscow, to civilians in Southeast

A note posted on the ministry website expresses
 "deep concern" over attempts to put new barriers
 to the transportation of the humanitarian aid.


‘White rain’: Donetsk residents
record alleged phosphorus
shelling on video

Citizens in Donetsk have recorded multiple
 videos of white glowing particles raining on
 residential quarters. The locals allege that
Ukraine's military has shelled their city with
 internationally prohibited phosphorus

On Thursday night, people in the Lenin district
of the city of Donetsk, saw a flow of white fire
pouring down from the dark sky alongside the
 now-familiar sound of bombing, RIA Novosti

They suspect these may have been incendiary
 shells filled with white phosphorous, similar to
 those reportedly used by the military, during a
blockade of another eastern city, Slavyansk
 in June.

So far there have been no official reports from
 the scene about the results of the night shell-
ing of Donetsk, which could confirm whether
white phosphorous munitions, were really
being used against densely-populated areas.

Interfax news agency reported that unusual
 munitions resembling “fireworks or white rain”
 after exploding, have been seen on one front
 of the battlefield, up to 5 kilometers wide.

Charles Shoebridge, a former UK army officer,
told RT that the video “does appear to show
some of the characteristics one would expect
 to see with the use of white phosphorus or a
similar incendiary ammunition.”

“In particular, a large number of brightly burning
 particles falling rapidly to the ground, without
 the assistance of, for example, parachutes to
slow their descent, suggests this wasn't a
more commonly used illumination ammunition,
such as flares," Shoebridge said, stressing
though, that “one would associate large
volumes of smoke with white phosphorus
 use,” which aren't visible, possibly since
 the video was recorded at night.

The Ukrainian Army claims they are in the
 final stages of freeing Donetsk city from the
 local militia. Pro-Kiev forces are using heavy
 artillery, such as rocket launchers, against a
city with a population close to 1 million
 (approximately 950,000 citizens).

More scenes of devastation are emerging
 from across the city, with many buildings
burned out, or riddled with shell-holes. A
 large number of private homes in Donetsk
 have been burned down as firefighters can
 not put out all the fires started by bombs.

At least 74 people, including children, have
been killed in the city in the last three days.

Donetsk has come under constant fire by
 Ukraine's Army since May, suffering at least
 128 attacks. According to Donetsk People’s
 Republic statistics, at least 839 people have
 died in attacks, over the last three months.

Another centre, Lugansk city, remains a
hot spot, being under siege for 2 weeks.
City hospitals are running out of supplies:
 garages are completely out of fuel.

The populace, facing a looming humanitarian
 crisis, has almost halved, RIA Novosti reports.

 The food supply is unstable, which has led to
 price rises and public transport is dwindling,
while garbage disposal has been suspended.
Potable water treatment facilities have no
 chemical agents to disinfect drinking water.

The Ukrainian Army and National Guard have
 kept shelling communities and residential
areas around the regional centre, Donetsk.

The small town of Ilovaisk, 35 klmtrs from
Donetsk, has been shelled day and night
for the last nine days.

 After Ukrainian troops failed to capture the
town, pro-Kiev forces besieged it and began
shelling residential areas.

The self-defense forces announced recently
that they had managed to break the enemy
 chain around the town, but still, the heavy
shelling continues.

Rockets from Grad multiple missile launchers
 fired by the Ukrainian Army have destroyed a
 local railway wagon factory, a Maintenance
and Repair Department, a children's camp
and a boiler house.

 They have also damaged a large number
 of private dwellings, RIA Novosti reports.

The Ukrainian National Guard is deliberately
shelling petrol stations, to cut fuel supplies
to the town, Russian news agencies report.

Several thousand citizens who could not
evacuate from the town through a lack of
transport due to constant shelling, are
 hiding in cellars, 24 hours a day.

Victims of the shelling are being buried in
 parks and dooryards because the ongoing
 battle prevents citizens from burying their
 relatives in cemeteries.

Both electricity and water supplies in Ilovaisk
 have been restricted, so even the firefighting
 teams do not respond to emergency calls.

The locals say they cannot establish the real
 number of dead and wounded because of the
 absence of any authorities in the town.

In Grabovo village a device, most probably a
Tochka-U ballistic missile, has left a crater
eight meters deep.

In Gorlovka, shells destroyed a recreation
centre, a shopping centre and a market.

In one place, the small town of Zugres,
the local authorities say 15 people,
including three children, died.

Ukrainian troops are trying to cut the
connections between militia forces in
 Donetsk and Lugansk, but so far their
 efforts have been in vain.

In the meantime, the Lugansk self-defense
 militia has launched a counteroffensive on
 the Ukrainian Army, blocking a soldiers' unit
 near Miusinsk & inflicting a defeat on Kiev’s
 troops near the town of Krasny Luch.


(in which he said "everything possible" would
be done to stop the Ukraine fighting)

Shelling on Donetsk stopped: bread,
water, electricity, were provided.

The situation in Donetsk was calm on
Friday, as Kiev's military stopped shelling.

Buses ran to Sloviansk and Kramatorsk, &
a marketplace was open in Donetsk city's

 Leninsky district, local residents say.

Bread, water, electric power supplies and
Internet access were provided in Donetsk.

Electricity was still cut in several residential
in Leninsky district of the city, as an
artillery shell
hit a high-voltage power line.
This could be restored
in about two days.

Militias control approaches to towns bordering
 Donetsk & Kiev's army faces them on the other
 side of the city. In the evening, a bridge was
disrupting traffic in the town.

Eyewitnesses also said fields were burning
the Donetsk dam lake and explosions
had been
heard in another regional town.


Leader Hails Changes in Iraq, Says
 US More Hostile despite Negotiations

The Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution of Iran
 Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei, hails the talks
 between Iran and the World powers.

“What Dr Zarif and Iran’s negotiators have achieved
 will be continued; their negotiating experience is
a priceless achievement because everyone knows
 that negotiations with the US, will not lessen their
 animosity toward Iran,” asserts the Leader.

His eminence compares the diplomatic field to
a war front and believes that the current era is
a time of transition towards a new world order.

"In this era, strong and pragmatic diplomacy is
 of great importance which makes the foreign
 ministry’s duties even more difficult," the
Supreme Leader underlines.

He points to other nations’ hatred for the US's
 blind support for the Zionist entity in Gaza, and
 repeats that no one in the world will exculpate
 the US from complicity in the genocide by the
 usurping, cruel, pagan Zionist regime, in Gaza.

“The US' standing is now weaker,” the Leader

“Palestinian's polemic about the truce is correct.
 They say that the predatory regime of Israel now
cannot commit any crime it wills and return to a
pre-war time unscathed,” he says.

“There should be reparation for the Zionists’
 crimes in Gaza and, in the Palestinians’ view,
 the reparation will be an end to Gaza's siege,”
says the Leader, closing his remarks with:
 “no just person would ever deny such a
rightful demand.”

Ayatollah Khamenei also hails the appointment
 of Iraq's new prime minister, saying the enemies'
 plot to push Iraq into further chaos, through the
political disputes over the premiership, will be
 foiled, once the new cabinet starts work.

"God willing, the deadlock will end with the
 appointment of Iraq's new prime minister and
 the government will be formed to start its work
 and give a good lesson to those who did, and
do, intend to stir chaos and sedition in Iraq,"
his eminence says, at a meeting in Tehran.

Iraq's President Fuad Masum on Tuesday
asked Haider al-Abadi to form a new

Abadi was nominated as the prime minister,
 while some Shiite parties named incumbent
 Nouri Maliki, as their choice as premier.

According to Iraq's constitution, the majority
 faction in the parliament, should name the
 prime minister.

Iran recognizes Abadi as Iraq's new premier.
 Several high-ranking Iranian officials have
 congratulated him and the Iraqi nation on
 the appointment.

Nouri al-Maliki has now resigned.


Israeli Government Splits over
 Gaza Permanent Ceasefire

Concluding a permanent ceasefire in Gaza has
 increased the split among Zionist ministers, as
 the Right's representatives refuse to 'concede'
 when faced with the Palestinian resistance.

The Zionist admission of defeat, is rising,
 highlighting the Palestinian resistance's
achievements, including their ability to
 close Ben-Gurion Airport.

Israeli analysts also consider that the
Palestinian resistance controlled the
 rules of engagement - and prevented
 Israel's army from reaching its goals.

The Zionist State Comptroller is to
investigate the political & military
setbacks, during the Gaza war.



Ukraine’s State Service for Emergency Situations
 reports that 71 lorries have left Kiev, Kharkiv and
Dnepropetrovsk to deliver 773 tons
of essentials
to Starobelsk in the Luhansk region,
where they
will be handed over to the ICRC, in
with international rules.

The ICRC will distribute aid to those civilians
who've been worst hit by Kiev’s shelling of
the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

Russia also dispatched a relief convoy to
 eastern Ukraine last Tuesday. 262 lorries,
 with about 2,000 tonnes of food supplies,
medical products and essentials are now
heading for Russia’s border with Ukraine.


Iraqi Dawa party endorses Abadi as new premier
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s Dawa Party
has announced its commitment to the country’s
 Prime Minister-designate, Haider al-Abadi.

The Dawa Party calls on all political parties
to endorse Abadi as well.

The Dawa Party “calls on political blocs to
 work with the constitutionally designated
 prime minister, Mr. Abadi, and accelerate the
 government's formation in the defined time.”

Dawa initially refused Fouad Masoum, the new
 Iraqi President, when he asked Abadi, who was
 the deputy parliament speaker, to form a new
 government for Iraq.

The party announced its decision after asking
 Iraq’s Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani’s opinion
on the matter.

The top Iraqi Shia cleric said the new premier
 should have broad national acceptance and
be able to work with other ethnic & religious
 leaders in the country.

The request by Dawa comes days after Maliki
 said he would only leave office after a court
 ruling that he must do so.


3 days in Donetsk: 70+ civilians
 killed, over 100 wounded

Over 70 people have been killed in Donetsk
 Region, and 116 others wounded, in the last
three days of fighting in eastern Ukraine,
 state the regional authorities.

Many civilians are also feared dead after Kiev's
 authorities resumed shelling of eastern districts
 in Lugansk, the city council reports. No figures
 for the number of casualties are known, yet.

“According to residents’ reports, eastern Lugansk
 came under intensive artillery attack Wednesday,”
 the city council says on its website. “Witnesses
say - as a result of the shelling - many civilians
 have been killed and wounded.”

The city has been without water, electricity or
 fuel, for almost two weeks.

Over 60 people have been killed or wounded
 every day, UN human rights spokesperson,
 Cecile Pouilly states.

Dmitry Kazadaev, a Lugansk resident, says the
 Ukrainian forces are targeting mostly civilian
 locations – and not where the self-defense
 forces are stationed.

“There are a lot less casualties among the self-
defense forces than among civilians,” he says.

“And these stupid bombings of residential areas
...you can take a look. There are a few houses
 destroyed here, two more over there, and one
person died near that school. Why are they
doing this?”

Lugansk residents say they have “to wait in line
 several times to get humanitarian aid stamps,”
 then “go stand in another line for this store, in
order to actually get this aid.” The process is
 described as a “big hassle.”


Ukraine in bloody chaos — Putin

President Vladimir Putin says on Thursday that
the current situation in Ukraine is “bloody chaos”,
and pledges that Moscow will make every effort
 to stop the conflict.

“The country has fallen into bloody chaos and
fratricidal conflict,” Putin said, at a meeting with
Russian lawmakers in the Black Sea resort city
of Yalta.

 He said that the situation is deteriorating. “A
major humanitarian catastrophe has broken
 out in the southeast,” Putin said.

President Putin said Russian sanctions are not
just retaliatory measures, but a real means to
support domestic producers and open up the
domestic market to new partners.

“They are not just retaliatory steps. In the first
place they are measures to support domestic
 producers and to open up our markets to the
 countries and producers who are eager to
cooperate with Russia and are prepared for
such cooperation,” he said, at a meeting
 with State Duma members on Thursday.

He recalled that the decisions on Russian
 sanctions had been taken in relation to the
 countries that had earlier imposed “utterly
 groundless and illegal sanctions” on Russia.

Putin said that, regardless of the foreign
political and foreign economic situation,
“the most important thing for us now, is
our internal affairs, our tasks and goals
that the people of Russia, the citizens of
Russia, set for us.”

“Our future is in our own hands,” Putin
said, with certainty.

He believes that it is of extreme importance to
 ensure the highest quality of state governance
 and “most importantly, a high quality of life for
Russia's citizens’.

Russia does not seek isolation from the rest of
the world, but the country intends to develop,
 by relying more on domestic resources and by
 boosting its industrial and agricultural sectors,
 President Putin said, on Thursday.

“We must... calmly, with dignity... effectively
 improve our country without isolating it from
 the outside world, without breaking ties with
 our partners, but also not allowing others to
 treat us in an insolent and tutorial manner,”
 he said at a meeting with members of the
State Duma, in Yalta.

The president said he was confident that Russian
 society needs to consolidate itself and mobilize
 “not for wars, or conflicts, but for persistent work
 for Russia, and in the name of Russia.”

Much of the Russian people’s solidarity depends
 on the work of its lawmakers, according to Putin.

Vladimir Putin believes that Crimea may play
 a unifying role in healing historical scars and
 cementing Russian society:

“I believe Crimea today may be a unique
 yardstick. It's capable of playing a unique
 unifying role for Russia --- the role of an
 historical and spiritual source and a way
to reconcile the Reds and the Whites,”
 Putin said.

Putin said the Crimean peninsula remembers
both the triumphs & tragedy of the fratricidal
civil war in the early 20th century, when
Russians were killing Russians.

The head of state said Crimea may help heal the
 injury the Russian people suffered, as a result of
the dramatic split of the 20th century and could
amend the timeline of Russia’s history.

Putin urged legislators, representatives of political
parties, religious organizations and culture workers
 to give thought as to how to cope with this task.

Russian President Vladimir Putin repeated his
call to ensure the real equality of 3 languages
 - Russian, Ukrainian and Tatar - in Crimea.

“Work to exonerate the repressed people of
Crimea must be carried out in full and the real
equality of the three languages guaranteed,”
he said.

Russian PM and chair of Russia’s ruling United
Russia party, Dmitry Medvedev, the State Duma
 speaker Sergei Naryshkin & a number of federal
 ministers are also attending Putin’s meeting
with State Duma lawmakers in Crimea’s Yalta.

Later on Thursday, the Russian president will
meet with men of culture to discuss issues of
 Crimea’s integration into Russia’s cultural life.

President Putin's visit to the Republic of Crimea,
has come after Crimea and Sevastapol signed
reunification deals with Russia on March 18th,
 after a referendum two days earlier, in which
an overwhelming majority of Crimeans voted
 to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian

Work to integrate the Peninsula into Russia’s
 economic, financial, credit, legal, state power,
 military and infrastructure systems is actively
 underway, now that Crimea has become part
 of Russia.

In the Soviet Union, Crimea used to be part of
 Russia until 1954, when it was given to Ukraine
 by Soviet Communist Party leader, Khrushchev.

Now a new university, water supply, bridge to
connect Crimea with Russia, and many other
infrastructure developments are in progress.


Head of the self-proclaimed Luhansk
People's Republic (LNR) in Ukraine,
Valery Bolotov, says he has resigned.

"I've decided to temporarily quit the post
of head of the Luansk People's Republic,"
Bolotov tells reporters on Thursday.

 "The impact of the wounds are preventing
me from being fully efficient in this post."

He says he will ask LNR Defense Minister,
 Igor Plotnitsky, to replace him, promising
to continue the struggle.

"I'm a resident of Luhansk; it's my home, and
I'll continue to fight for our common ideals,"
he says, adding that he is confident that the
 LNR will be successful.

He acknowledges that there is a difficult
situation in the self-proclaimed republic,
saying Kiev has sent a large taskforce
against LNR cities to destroy the LNR's
infrastructure & are doing it on purpose.

"It's a fact that we're on the brink of a
humanitarian disaster," he says, urging
the LNR's leadership to exert them-
selves to strenuous efforts, to work
for the sake of the people's lives.


Mass killings of civilians by Ukrainian
 troops in Uglegorsk ignored by West

Kiev's forces announce the capture of Uglegorsk.
 The town lies in ruins now and casualties among
 the civilian population are described as 'plentiful'.

Yet there were no militia troops in the town
 -- just a militia checkpoint at its entrance.

 Kiev's troops encircled Uglegorsk, without
 allowing humanitarian corridors to civilians.

"On August 12th, at 06:00, a massive artillery
 bombardment of the town began. The army
used D-30 howitzers & MLRS Grad systems.

The missile fire was conducted from Debalcevo
town, which was controlled by Kiev's forces.
According to residents in Debalcevo, the artillery
 shelling continued throughout the day," the press
 service of the People's Republic of Donetsk says.

The troops were shelling residential quarters:
 the militia checkpoint stayed intact.

"The infrastructure of this town has been
destroyed. Numbers of civilian casualties
 are difficult to calculate, but it is possible
 to say it is one of the bloodiest operations
 by "Ukrainian policemen," the militia says.

Dozens, or even hundreds of civilians may
have been killed.

According to the UN, as many as 2036 people
 have been killed during the punitive operation
 of Ukrainian troops against Ukrainian citizens.



Monday night, the RAF made a second drop
of aid supplies over Mount Sinjar, including
3,180 reusable containers filled with water.

The first drop took place on Saturday
when the RAF delivered 1,200 reusable water
 containers, providing 6000 litres in total, and
240 solar lanterns, that can also be used to
recharge mobile phones.

 The MoD spokesperson confirms it is planning
 further aid drops over the coming days.

This decision comes as David Cameron is being
 urged to recall parliament from a summer recess
 to address the growing crisis in Iraq - and to even
consider taking part in military action.

When asked whether the decision to send Tornado
 jets to Iraq, even if for surveillance purposes, could
 be a first step towards military intervention, Chris
 Nineham, Vice Chair of Stop the War Coalition, says:

 "This is often how full-scale military interventions
 start," adding that the bombing of Libya started
 with no fly zones.

"The current dreadful crisis in Iraq has its roots in
 the Western occupation - Iraqi infrastructure was
 broken and sectarianism was encouraged." 

"The very last thing needed is more Iraqis killed by
 the Western powers, it will only serve to inflame
 an already desperate situation."

France and the US are already interfering,
by sending arms, planes and "advisers".


Russian aid convoy resumes journey to Ukraine

Uncertainty remains as to how much time it will
 take for Ukraine to vet the 2,000 tons of cargo
and let it in, once the lorries arrive at the
Russian-Ukrainian border.

Hours after the convoy departed for Ukraine,
 Tuesday, Russia said Kiev had guaranteed to
 secure delivery of Moscow's humanitarian
 aid -- on its territory.

"We are firmly relying on the reassurances given to
 us by the Ukrainian authorities: they guarantee the
 safe movement of the entire convoy through the
 territory controlled by Kiev's forces, " Russian
 Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters.

Lavrov says the pro-independence militias were
 also informed of the convoy, and are expected
 to ensure its safety.

"I am certain there will be no disruptions on their
 part, they're on the territory whose residents need
 humanitarian aid," Interfax news agency quotes
 him as saying.

Noting that Moscow, Kiev and relevant international
 organizations have worked intensively to coordinate
 the humanitarian operation, Lavrov says he expects
 that "some public statements that were heard from
 Kiev today, from some figures demanding some new
 conditions, will be disavowed."

Conflicting reports have emerged over such
issues as, where the convoy will cross the
border, and how the aid will be distributed.

In a telephone conversation with his German
 counterpart Frank- Walter Steinmeier, Lavrov
 called on Berlin to "employ every opportunity
 to facilitate implementation of this humane
 act, in line with the existing agreements...
and not allow its disruption."

The humanitarian aid involves no Russian
 military personnel or hardware, and has
about 2,000 tons of supplies, including
food, medication, sleeping bags and
electricity generators.

The UN estimates that nearly 118,000 people
 are now registered as internally displaced
 in Ukraine, with 87% from the country's east.

Over 168,000 have flown into Russia, and
figures held by Moscow... are even higher.

The number of killed or wounded in E. Ukraine
 has doubled to 2,086 over the last two weeks,
 say the UN’s “very conservative estimates”.

Over 60 people have been dying every day,
according to Reuters.


Israel agrees to open border crossing
 for aid supplies to Gaza Strip

Israel has consented to opening a border crossing
 for aid supplies to the Gaza Strip, the Sky News
 Arabia television channel reports on Wednesday.

The Israeli side also "does not object" to an
extension of a fishery zone for Palestinians
 in the Mediterranean Sea for up to six miles
- with the possibility of its further extension
by agreement with the Palestinian authority.

 They have also agreed to reduce the border
buffer zone to 300 metres, which Palestinian
 negotiators have pressed for.

Israel also promises to release another group
 of prisoners.

Any resumption of the operation of the airport and
 the seaport, on which the Palestinians also insist,
may be settled only after a final agreement on a
 ceasefire is reached, says the Israeli delegation.

There is also headway on the financial issue
 on the arrival of resources to Gaza Strip to
pay the salaries of public employees.



The acceptance of the US and EU proposals
on membership of the EU, has invited Hell
 to Ukraine. The Orthodox Christian Church
 is still being attacked, as civil war rages.

The head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in
 Kiev, Metropolitan Vladimir Sabodan, passed
 away on July 5th amid the Ukrainian civil war.

Inspired by his example, on January 22nd,
 Metropolitan Antony urged believers in Kiev:

 "Today, we celebrate the Ukrainian Day of
National Unity with a sense of sadness and
 grief. The country's on the brink of an abyss.
 The Church demands a stop to the violence.
People! Come to your senses!"

Protests against Kiev's coup regime continue.

 Mother's still gather to protest that their sons
 are being taken away to fight against their own
 people. Their sons are either fleeing to Russia,
 or taking drugs to endure the pain. Some even
 commit suicide.

Last May a priest was killed. Fr. Paul Zhuchenko
 was shot in the Donetsk region.  In early August,
 Archpriest Vladimir Kreslyansky was killed in
 the bombing of Lugansk.

On August 9th in Lugansk another Orthodox priest
 was killed during the bombing.  Witnesses say "he
 died praying. As he prayed, the falling bombs blew
 up in the air before they reached the ground and
no other people were wounded." His prayers,
the witnesses say, saved his people.

 Other priests are missing and have to be
presumed dead.

Churches in Ukraine are being bombed and the
 civilian population isn't being spared. In July a
 church was bombed & videoed by Anna News.

Recently, the Annunciation Church in Gorlovka
 was bombed and set on fire. Kiev appears to
 want genocide in South East Ukraine.

The Russian Church, in its most recent
statement says it "is renewing its call
 for the immunity of holy places, and
 that clergy not be sacrificed to hatred".

Sadly, western churches have no compassion.
 Certainly their governments don't implore Kiev
to stop the bombings. The West's churches
seem to be following their masters voice - and
ignoring the Holy spirit.

A few days ago a plane from Canada arrived in
 Kharkov, with $4.5 million worth of equipment
 for Kiev's compulsorily drafted forces.

 Pentagon Press Secretary, Rear Admiral John Kirby
 has admitted that he has sent US instructors to Kiev.
 Some, supposedly to help investigate the Malaysian
 MH17 Crash. These instructors are now being shot
at and killed.

Perhaps Kirby might well be asked 'why investigate,
 since your country blamed Russia a few hours after
 the attack?  Were they sent to remove evidence?

Alexander Dugin writes in his
 "Letter to the American People
 on Ukraine":

 "The American political elite has stolen, perverted
 and counterfeited the American identity. And they
 make us hate you, and they make you hate us.

"The global oligarchy which rules the world is
using you and smashing us. Let us revolt. Let
us resist. Together, Russians and Americans.
 We are the people. We are not their puppets."

But the US elite won't make peace. Making peace
 means losing money --- whether in Europe, or the
 Middle East. They say "Yes" to war, because of
their greed.

Obama claims that any news of dead priests and
 humanitarian catastrophe is Russian propaganda.

 He is escalating a civil war, sending money, aid
 and military "trainers" to the Kiev government.

 Bush used to call it the New World Order.
Obama calls it "Hope and Change".

 "For they are the spirits of devils working signs."



Urge FARC-EP to Leave Hatred
Behind, and Embrace Peace

The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia,
 People's Army (FARC-EP) calls on everyone to
all feelings of hatred and vengeance
to pave the way to peace and end
the long-
running civil conflict there.


US Attacks in Iraq ILLEGAL for Obama

US President Obama faces "legal difficulties"
 if he continues attacking the Islamic State (IS)
 in Iraq with no congressional approval, experts
on constitutional issues say.


Russia sends humanitarian aid convoy to Ukraine

On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin
told Jose Manuel Barroso, president of the
 European Commission, that Russia, with Red
 Cross approval, was sending a humanitarian
 convoy to Ukraine.

The European Commission warned Russia not
to attempt any unilateral actions in Ukraine
 “under any pretext, including humanitarian.”

Moscow has been urging Kiev to give permission
 for the shipment of humanitarian aid to residents
 of eastern Ukraine, but the government in Kiev,
 supported by the West, is now rejecting this.

The Red Cross says the humanitarian situation in
 eastern Ukraine is critical. Reports say thousands
 have no access to water, electricity or medical aid.

Donetsk city is
still being shelled, as fighting
between Kiev's troops and anti-coup forces,

The UN says over 1,540 people have been killed
and 300,000 forced to flee their homes due to
4 months of fierce fighting in eastern Ukraine.

Kiev intends to stop the internationally-supervised
 Russian humanitarian aid convoy for East Ukraine
 for at least a week, a spokesperson for Kiev's
military says.

Ukraine says the time is needed for the ICRC),
which is contributing to the Moscow-initiated
 mission, to establish where the aid should go.

The convoy of lorries sent on Tuesday “did not
pass ICRC certification,” Andrey Lysenko says.

Presidential aide Valery Chaliy said Kiev wanted
 the entire cargo to be unloaded at the border to
be transferred to Red Cross vehicles.

“We will not allow any escort of the Russian
 Emergencies Ministry or Russian military,” he
 says. “Ukraine will take responsibility for this.”

Lysenko claims that the convoy is repainted
 military lorries, accompanied by an S-300
 air defense system, Ukraine News reports.

The ICRC says it was told by Moscow that
 the convoy had been dispatched, but hasn't
 yet had detailed lists, or distribution plans.

“The situation is changing by the hour and right
 now, we are not in a position to provide further
 details on how this operation could take place,”
 ICRC spokesperson, Anastasiya Isyuk, says.

Earlier, Moscow said the aid mission had been
 agreed by all parties concerned.

Russia has sent some 2,000 tons of aid to Ukraine,
 including food, medicine, sleeping bags and power

The aid is meant for the Donetsk and Lugansk
 regions, which have seriously suffered in over
3 months of warfare, as Kiev's army has used
 heavy artillery, bomber aircraft and tanks, to
advance on cities controlled by the militias.

Kiev earlier accused Moscow of trying to conduct
 a "stealth invasion" of Ukraine under the guise of
humanitarian aid, saying Russian troops would be
posing as guards of the convoy, while actually
being tasked with starting an offensive.

Kiev's narrative is supported by some western
 countries, who say any humanitarian mission
 not backed by Kiev, will be considered as an
 attack on Ukraine’s sovereignty.

Russia dismisses the accusations as nonsense.

In another media briefing on Monday evening,
 Lysenko said that the humanitarian convoy to
 Ukraine was organized “under an agreement
 between Petro Poroshenko & the Red Cross,”
 and Russia “wants to present this mission
as its own initiative” as a publicity stunt.

Luhansk will be the final destination point for
 humanitarian aid delivery to southeast Ukraine
 residents, Vice-Premier of the self proclaimed
 Donetsk People’s Republic,  Andrei Purgin,
 said later, on Tuesday.

And Kiev seems to have reversed its insistence
on transferring the lorries' cargoes.

Russia’s convoy of lorries with humanitarian supplies
 includes food, baby food, medicine & drinking water.

“The convoy is moving to Luhansk through Kharkov
 and will most likely stop in the town of Schastye [a
 Luhansk suburb]. If everything proceeds normally,
combat operations will be halted there. We don’t
have any other details right now,” the DPR vice-
premier said.

Humanitarian aid distribution in Lugansk may
 be complicated, due to the complete absence
 of communications within the city and the
destroyed infrastructure, he added.

“It's not clear who this aid will be handed over
to, as the city has been severely damaged.
 There's no electricity and no means of
communicating there,” he said.

The humanitarian convoy is moving to the region
 without any notice received by Luhansk, the DPR
 vice-premier continued.

“This means that the convoy will bring the aid
and will then try to hand it over to someone
 on the spot,” he said.

There are currently about 250,000 people staying
 in Luhansk, according to the city council’s data.

 They're being forced to live with unceasing armed
 clashes between local self-defense fighters and
 the Ukrainian army, and are also without water
 and electricity or any means of communication.

 The Moscow Regional administration says the
 humanitarian cargo includes 400 tons of oats,
 100 tons of sugar, 62 tons of baby food, 54 tons
 of medicine and medical items, 12,000 sleeping
 bags and 69 electric power generators.


US strikes against ISIL false show: Iran MP

The US' record of support for terrorists in Syria,
 Iraq and Afghanistan belies its recent military
 strikes against Takfiri ISIL militants as only
 “posturing,” a senior Iranian lawmaker says.

“The Americans, who strengthened terrorist groups
in Syria, Iraq & Afghanistan, are putting on a show
 of dealing with the ISIL instead of [taking] serious
 action,” Chair of the Majlis National Security and
 Foreign Policy Committee Alaeddin Boroujerdi says.

He adds the US is carrying out airstrikes against
 the ISIL terrorists, to show that "it has a role to
play in the region."

Iran doesn't welcome such posturing by the US,
 the legislator says, adding, “Such intervention
 will surely bring no benefit to Iraq or the region.”

On Thursday, US President Obama authorized
 the use of targeted airstrikes, to prevent the
 advance of ISIL terrorists in Iraq and protect
US' personnel & interests inside the country.

Just hours after President Obama’s authorization
 of "targeted airstrikes," US fighter jets & drones
 repeatedly bombed Takfiri ISIL militants in Iraq.

White House spokesperson Josh Earnest told
 reporters on Friday, that the recent US' strikes
 against ISIL terrorists in Iraq, do not have a
"specific end date."

Oddly, the US has been giving arms and training
 to militant groups to cause terrorism in Syria, to
topple President Bashar al-Assad's government.

ISIL has taken several towns since it intensified
 its attacks in Iraq in mid-June. The Iraqi army is
 engaged in fierce fighting with the militants to
 push them out of the captured areas.

In Syria, the army continues to rack up
victories against the many armed gangs
there, including ISIL.


West cynical statement on 'no humanitarian
need' in S. East Ukraine
- Lavrov

 Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov
says he hopes that “Western partners
 won’t put a spoke in the wheel and will
think about the people who are badly in
need of water and electricity.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin has talked
to the head of the European Commission,
Jose Manuel Barroso, says the president’s
press service.

“Attention was focused on the catastrophic
 consequences of the military operation
conducted by the Kiev authorities in the
south-eastern regions, and the necessity
 to urgently deliver humanitarian aid to the
 conflict zone,” the statement says.

Russia's Foreign minister accuses Washington,
 London and Berlin, of a “blatant expression of
cynicism” in thinking eastern Ukraine doesn’t
need humanitarian aid.

“If what the press services in London and
 Washington and I think Berlin too, say about
 the phone contacts of the US, UK & German
 leaders - if it is true what was said, and in
particular, that all three leaders agreed
 that there is no need for humanitarian aid
to southeastern Ukraine, as all necessary
 measures are already being taken, then it
is a blatant expression of cynicism,” the
head of the Russian Foreign Ministry says.

Hundreds of thousands have been left with-
out water, electricity, and both mobile and
 land-line 'phones, for over a week.

Constant shelling has forced many to seek
refuge in underground shelters and 117,000
  people are forcibly displaced within Ukraine,
reveals the latest UN data. Moscow's data
shows that 730,000 other people have fled
for safety, to Russia.


Ukrainian Armed Forces in "misery" pushed back

Another unit of Ukraine's Armed Forces ran out
 of ammunition during a fierce firefight with anti-
Fascist fighters as they tried to surround the
city of Donetsk on the weekend.

 Reports from the front line tell a story of misery,
 bad preparation, bad leadership and confusion.

In an interview with the Ukrainian publication
 Gordon, an unnamed soldier, asking not to be
named, out of fear for his comrades, states:

"You know, not long ago, I realized with horror,
that Russian "Channel One" tells more truth
about the Ukrainian army's situation in the
ATO zone, than our media does".

He confirms reports in the Russian media, that
 Ukrainian army units had crucified a three-year-
old boy in Slaviansk and says only 20% of locals
 in Donbas welcome the Ukrainian Armed Forces
-- while 80% want them to go away.

Saturday, Ukraine's Armed Forces admitted to
 heavy losses when trying  to encircle Donetsk.

Although Kiev is admitting to many killed, eye
witnesses say that the true figures are always
far higher than the official ones.

Meanwhile the humanitarian situation in
 the cities of Donetsk and Lugansk, is

 Russia states it is ready to launch an aid
operation in the area to help the civilians,
but the west is now procrastinating.

Some NATO and US figures (plus poodle
UK leaders, of course) have said that, if
Russia tries to enter Ukraine with aid,
they will consider it to be an invasion,
and an act of war.


Israel, Palestinians agree to new
 72-hour Gaza ceasefire – officials

Agreement on a new Egypt-proposed
 72-hour Gaza ceasefire is reached on
 Sunday, Reuters reports, citing Israeli
 and Palestinian officials.


Turkey premier wins presidential vote:
Unofficial results
Turkey's outgoing PM, Recep Tayyip
 Erdogan, has won the country’s
presidential election, unofficial
 results say.

The results, based on a Turkish media count,
say the ruling Justice & Development Party’s
 (AKP) candidate won almost 52% of the vote
 in the first round of the presidential election.

"The people showed their will at the polls
today," Erdogan said in a brief speech in
 the Istanbul on Sunday evening.

Erdogan's main rival Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu
 is said to have won nearly 39% of the vote.

Former head of the Organization of Islamic
 Cooperation (OIC) Ihsanoglu, 71, was joint
candidate for the centre-left Republican
People’s Party (CHP) and the far-right
 Nationalist Movement Party (MHP).

"I hope that the result is beneficial for
 democracy in Turkey," Ihsanoglu said
 in Istanbul. "I congratulate the prime
 minister and wish him success."

Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtas has
 reportedly won third place, with slightly
 more than 9% of the vote.

The official results in the election, are
 expected on Monday.

Erdogan promised the tens of thousands of
voters backing him in the election, a strong
and new Turkey, and is flying to Ankara for
a victory speech.

Turkish citizens voted at over 165,000 polling
 stations on Sunday to directly elect their head
 of state for a five-year term. 53 million people
 were eligible to vote.


Spreading the truth:-- Spanish volunteers
 join fight against Kiev in Eastern Ukraine

2 Spanish volunteers have joined the fight against
 Kiev’s offensive on eastern Ukraine, speaking out
 against the actions of the nation's military. They
say their main objective is to spread the truth
 about the conflict.

Anhel Davilla-Rivas, 29, and Rafa Munez, 28, arrived
 in Donetsk two weeks ago to offer their assistance
 to the residents of eastern Ukraine.

“What we saw in the weeks we've been here, is
only bombing of the people and an assault by all
 the forces on all fronts from Kiev. They are trying
 to separate the cities and sending mercenaries
 to kill journalists -- and to demoralize any person
 that can tell the truth about what’s happening
here,” Davilla-Rivas tells RT’s Ruptly agency.

The pair haven't engaged in fighting just yet,
 stressing that their main goal is to reveal the
truth about what is happening on the ground.

Davilla-Rivas notes Russia has no presence
 in the area - and could do more in terms of
humanitarian aid.

“I never see a Russian soldier... volunteers like us,
 but Russia isn't really doing anything. And I think
 that Russia should do more for these people - not
 with guns, but helping people with medicine,” the
 Spanish volunteer says.

Davilla-Rivas also calls on others around the world
 to come to eastern Ukraine and help in any way
that they can.

“More people have to come here. If they don’t want
 to take up guns, they don't have to, but... all people
can help with something:--
cleaning in the kitchen;
 telling the truth to countries from here; and watching
 the situation with their own eyes. It's more important
 that a lot of people come here and help in what way
they can, not necessarily as soldiers.”

Both arrived in eastern Ukraine from Madrid by
 train and joined the Vostok battalion of the
 self-defense forces.

Kiev's forces completely encircled Donetsk,
 on Saturday.

The Donetsk region militia said it is ready for a
ceasefire to stop a humanitarian catastrophe.

Their statement came as the UN voiced serious
 concerns over the situation in eastern Ukraine.
 “Innocent civilians trapped in fighting continue
 to lose their lives,” UN Secretary-General Ban
Ki-moon said on Friday.

“What we are scared about is the way the military
 operations are conducted. What will happen if we
 have intense fighting inside the big urban centres
 of Lugansk and Donetsk? Fighting in these highly
 intensified urban areas, could lead to a massive
 exodus and to massive destruction,” UN High
 Commissioner for Refugees, Vincent Cochetel,
 stated on Tuesday.

Russia’s Ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin,
has called for an international humanitarian
 mission to be launched.

 But Kiev and some of its Western allies vehemently
 oppose any humanitarian mission involving Russia.

Kiev even accuses Moscow of scheming to infiltrate
 eastern Ukraine with the help of the International
 Red Cross mission to “provoke a full-scale conflict.”

According to Moscow, however, a “full-scale” war
 is already taking place in the region and it needs
 to stop.

Late on Saturday, the press service of Ukrainian
 President Petro Poroshenko said on his official
 website that the US has been invited to take part
 in an international humanitarian mission to Lugansk.

The mission, presented as Poroshenko’s initiative,
 under the auspices of the International Committee
of the Red Cross, was mentioned during his phone
 conversation with US Vice President Joe Biden.
(Whose son now heads Ukraine's major energy
company --- since the US-backed coup.)

The eastern Ukrainian city of Lugansk declared
 a state of humanitarian catastrophe on Tuesday,
 as there are no medical supplies, electricity, or
lighting. There's also a lack of mobile or internet
 communication. 250,000 civilians are unable to
 leave, a statement on the council's website says.

Over 1,100 people have been killed and 3,500
 injured in eastern Ukraine since Kiev’s offensive
 began. Around 100,000 people remain internally
 displaced and up to 740,000 have crossed the
 Russian border since January to stay with
friends or relatives, or to seek refugee status.


All of Israel within range of
 resistance missiles: Iran cmdr.

A senior Iranian commander says all Israel
is within range of missiles from Palestine's
 resistance movement.

“Today, all the occupied territories are within
range of the Palestinian resistance
 said the Deputy Commander of the Islamic
 Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), Brigadier
General Hossein Salami.

“When the resistance fires missiles at Haifa it
 means that the missile range of the Islamic
resistance has reached 160 kilometers and it
 means that the entire area [controlled by] the
 Zionist regime... is within the range of the
Palestinian resistance movement,” he noted.

The Iranian commander argued that now,
all residents of the occupied territories feel
 the same level of insecurity, and Israel has
become a securitized environment.

Israel has been incapable of controlling the
 barrage of Palestinian rockets and preventing
 the Islamic resistance forces from infiltrating
into its military bases through a large number
of tunnels, the commander pointed out.

Salami questioned Israel’s claim that Palestinian
 fighters had created 32 tunnels and the regime
 had destroyed them all.

“It is predicted that the resistance possesses
 equipment and capabilities which it will put
into action if the war gets out of control,” the
 commander pointed out.

Salami said despite the technologies and
equipment Israel possesses and the
intelligence operations it carries out, the
Palestinians have dug hundreds of
kilometers of tunnels, while Tel Aviv has
 failed to target major Palestinian figures
or discover and eliminate the resistance
 movement’s warehouses filled with
 rockets and missiles or even a large part
 of their tunnels.

“This shows that the Palestinian resistance
 movement has reached such intelligence
 maturity that has brought the intelligence
service of the Zionist regime to its knees,”
 he noted.

He said the West Bank will surely go through
the process Gaza went and it will undoubtedly
 take up arms and enter the battle against Israel,
 adding, “At present, they (West Bank) are fighting
 with stones, but Gaza, which now possesses
 missiles and drones, also used to fight with
stones and the same will happen out there.”

The Iranian commander pointed to Israel’s 33-day
 war on Lebanon in July 2006 as one of the major
 failures of Israel as it ruined the image of the
 regime’s military forces as the world’s fifth
most powerful army.

The achievements of Lebanon’s Hezbollah in the
2006 war inspired the Palestinians to resist Israel
 in the 22-day war on Gaza in 2008 and show
 better military capabilities in response to the
 regime’s 2012 aggression against the coastal
sliver, Salami added.

He also slammed Tel Aviv’s sway over the US,
adding, “Undoubtedly, it has been years that
 the Middle East policies and strategies of the
 US have been hostage to the policies of Israel.”

Referring to the atrocities of the ISIL Takfiri
 terrorist group in Syria and Iraq, Salami said
the ISIL was established with US support to
disintegrate the government of Iraq, and the
US sought to reduce Iran’s regional sway,
with the aid of a reactionary government.


Nagasaki marks 69th anniversary
 of US' atomic bombing

Japan has marked the 69th anniversary of
 the atomic bombing of the city of Nagasaki
 by the United States, in 1945.

A ceremony commemorating victims
 of the US nuclear attack, was held in
Nagasaki’s Peace Park, on Saturday.

The event was attended by the aging
survivors of the bombing, relatives of the
 victims & high-ranking Japanese officials.

In a speech at the ceremony, the Nagasaki
Mayor pledged the city’s continued push for
 the elimination of nuclear weapons. He also
 criticized nuclear states for failing to disarm.

Taue urged Japanese PM Shinzo Abe to
 address growing public concerns over
 Tokyo’s security policy.

“The rushed debate over collective self-
defence has given rise to the concern that
 this principle (Japan’s renunciation to
war) is wavering.”

The US attack on Nagasaki, which killed
over 70,000 people in the final stages of
 World War II, happened three days after
Washington’s atomic bombing of the city
 of Hiroshima, where over 140,000 died.

The US possesses the largest stockpile of
 active nuclear warheads in the world and is
 the only country to have ever used nuclear
 weapons against another nation.

The United States currently holds a stockpile
 of 4,650 nuclear warheads, 2,130 of which
 are operational.


US contracts Latin American youth
 for subversion in Cuba

A new investigation by Associated Press
 (AP) exposes a new USAID program to
manipulate Cuban youth

The United States Agency for International
 Development (USAID) secretly sent young
Latin Americans to Cuba in an attempt to
incite opposition and destroy the Revolution,
according to an investigation conducted by
the US press agency Associated Press, the
 same agency which exposed the ZunZuneo
 project, based on the use of mobile phone
 technology, to destabilize Cuba.

The report signed by journalists Desmond Butler,
 Jack Gillum, Alberto Arce and Andrea Rodríguez,
 stated that, beginning in October 2009, a project
 directed by USAID sent young Venezuelans,
 Costa Ricans and Peruvians to Cuba with the
goal of inciting a rebellion on the island.

AP says: “The travelers worked undercover,
often posing as tourists, and traveled around
the island scouting for people they could
turn into political activists.”

The project employed covert methods commonly
 used by US intelligence services, such as secret
 lines of communication, fronts and lies; encryption
 of information; security measures; promoting
 exchanges with overseas agents; seeking
intelligence information on Cuban society;
psychological preparation of emissaries in the
case of possible detection by Cuban State
Security; use of codes in communications,
among others.

 Nonetheless the journalists assert that the
project was full of “incompetence and risks.”

The covert, illegal operation contracted people,
 even after the arrest and sentencing of the US
 contractor Alan Gross, imprisoned for committing
 acts in violation of Cuban independence and
territorial integrity.

Young Cubans who were in contact with the
 “travelers,” such as university student Héctor
 Baranda, who became friends with a group
 of visitors, were shocked to hear about the
AP report, and those working for USAID.

“Their assignment was to recruit young Cubans
 to anti-government activism,” stated AP. The
mission consisted of organizing “programs
disguised as civic activities, including a work-
shop on health prevention.”

“Murillo was to check in every 48 hours and
 was provided with a set of security codes.”

"I have a headache," for instance, meant the
Costa Rican thought Cubans were watching.”

USAID hired the firm Creative Associates
 International which also participated in
 the creation of the ZunZuneo program.

According to documents obtained by AP and
 interviews conducted in 6 countries, “USAID's
 young operatives posed as tourists, visited
college campuses and used a ruse that could
 undermine USAID's credibility in critical health
 work around the world: An HIV-prevention
 workshop,” seen as the “perfect excuse”
for the program’s political objectives.

The investigation revealed that the “operation
often teetered on disaster. There was no safety
 net for the inexperienced travelers, who were
 doing work that was explicitly illegal in Cuba.”

According to emails obtained by AP, after Gross
 was arrested, USAID informed its operatives,
 privately, that they should consider suspending
 their scheduled plans to travel to Cuba.

However, in April 2010, Fernando Murillo was
 sent to Havana. He was contracted by Creative
 Associates to “turn Cuba's apathetic young
people into effective political actors.”

In Santa Clara, Murillo met a cultural group
that called itself “Revolution,” a modest outfit
of artists devoted to electronic music & video.

If the idea was to hold a series of seminars to
 recruit “volunteers,” Murillo needed a theme
 that would draw in potential recruits and still
 be allowed by the state.

He initiated a HIV workshop, which in November
 2010 attracted 60 young people. The workshop
 was supposed to give participants sex education
 to prevent contracting the virus.

But the ulterior motive, documents obtained by
 AP show, was to use the workshop as a recruiting
 ground for young people by showing them how to
 organize themselves.

When he was contacted in San Jose, Costa Rica,
 Murillo said he could not speak about the details
 of his Cuba trips because he signed a nondisclosure
 agreement. He said he wasn't trying to do anything
but teach, “I never said to a Cuban that he had to
do something against the government,” he said.

However, in the six page report which Fernando
 Murillo sent to Creative Associates, he stressed
that the workshop was “the perfect excuse for
 the treatment of the underlying theme.”

Elsewhere in the report Murillo revealed another
 objective, “to generate a network of volunteers
 for social transformation.”

Manuel Barbosa, founder of artistic group
 Revolution, said in an interview in Santa
 Clara, that the Costa Ricans never told
him that they were working for USAID.

AP’s report also stated that “Staging a workshop
 as a front to subvert a foreign government risked
 casting suspicion on USAID's legitimate public
 health mission, including a more than 3 billion
dollar annual HIV program that the agency says
 has helped some 50 million people in nearly
100 countries.”

While Murillo and the Costa Rican travelers focused
 on the HIV workshop and other programs, teams of
 Venezuelans and Peruvians were deployed to Cuba's
 college campuses.

Their mission, documents & interviews show, was
 to “recruit university students with the long-term
 goal of turning them against their government.”

In late 2009, Creative Associates contracted
 Venezuelan lawyer Zaimar Castillo, then 22,
 who ran an organization called Renova.

 His organization visited student residences on
 campus at the University of Santa Clara and
took weekend trips to meet the families of
students. Another team of young Peruvians
 also targeted the university in Santa Clara.

They described the students and their facilities
 in great detail, noting complaints and fairness
 issues that might be exploited. Potential
 recruits were listed by name, and then
 profiled, their leadership qualities assessed
 in a spreadsheet.

Nonetheless, the Cuban students, in recent
 interviews with AP, said they were shocked
 to discover that the foreigners were acting
 on behalf of  USAID.

On September 3, 2010, Irving Perez, a manager
 at Creative Associates' office in San Jose, called
 a meeting via Skype to announce a change in
 strategy. “Our program will no longer rely on trips
 to the island, at least not as the backbone of
 the operation,” Perez told the travelers.

Instead of traveling to Cuba, they would try to
help certain Cuban “star contacts” get exit
 visas to train in a third country.

AP recognized the failure of the subversion project.

On August 4, White House Press Secretary Josh
 Earnest declined to comment, when questioned
 about the project.

“I can not comment on the report (published in
 the US press) as there are several inaccurate
 points. I invite you to go directly to USAID.”

A statement by USAID spokesperson Matt
 Herrick says USAID denies the secrecy
 of their programs in Cuba, commenting:

 “The United States Congress finances pro-
democracy programs in Cuba to increase
Cubans’ access to more information and the
 strengthening of civil society.”

 Herrick added that all programs carried out
 in Cuba are available to the public via the
webpage foreignassistance.gov. “This work
 isn't a secret, it isn't covert and it isn't illegal.”

However, as in the case of the ZunZuneo project,
 the characteristics of this subversive program
 place it in the category of unconventional war
 methods, which have been used increasingly
 over recent years.

This form of warfare seeks to achieve the goals
 of domination and regime change in countries
 the US considers opposed to its interests,
without the direct involvement of traditional
 forces on the ground, resulting in relatively
 lower costs for the aggressor country, but
 not for the victim.

The participation of “unqualified” personnel
in traditional intelligence operations is codified
 in a US Special Forces’ TC-1801 training circular.

According to the circular, unconventional warfare
 involves a “multi-agency” effort by the US. The
entire project operatively reflects this doctrine,
in which USAID plays an important role.

The federal agency obtains multimillion dollar
funds from US tax payers for its "humanitarian"
 work around the world, but has been exposed
to be a front for intelligence operations.

Excerpts from document obtained by AP

Contact must be anonymous by Gmail, SMS,
 or telephone, with a simple message saying
 the traveler is having a good time.

Communication by any means must be short
and to the point.

If sensitive information needs to be reported (security
 issues, key programmatic events) the message must
 be encoded and should never mention names,
 places, numbers, etc. If need be, the free, easy-
to-use service Hushmail Express will be used.

If language like the following needs to be used,
 please interpret according to the phrases:

“I have a headache” → We suspect we are being
 monitored and will temporarily abstain from
 carrying out the objectives of the trip, unless
 otherwise instructed.

“I got drunk and had to go to the hospital. I’m OK
 now and will take it easy for the rest of the trip” →
 We were detained and interrogated; we will not
 continue with the objectives of the trip and
continue as tourists for the rest of the trip.

“I’m too ill to stay here, will return home early.
 See you soon” → We have been expelled and
 are leaving immediately. Will get in touch with
 you as soon as we are in a third country.


Israel communities near Gaza border
 half empty: Report
Nearly half the Israeli communities near the Gaza
 border, have reportedly fled their houses in recent
 weeks, expressing doubt over the prospect of any
 safe return to the area.

During the period, hundreds of Israeli families
have left the Negev desert - a tourist attraction
 - to live in northern areas, the L.A. Times reports.

A poll this week reveals that 21% of residents in
 the area, are considering moving away.

Despite the Israeli army’s announcement to the
 residents of the area, after the latest cease-fire
with Hamas that they can return to their homes,
 the communities are reportedly still half-empty.

A senior Hamas official says the group would
 not extend the truce because Israel has not
 responded to any of the Palestinian demands
 at the negotiations.

Israeli tanks have started to redeploy to their
previous positions during the Gaza war.

Thousands of Palestinians left their homes
 east of Gaza City on Friday in fear of Israeli
 attacks after the truce ended.

The Israeli military aggression against Gaza,
which began on July 8, has killed over 1,900
 Palestinians, including over 400 children,
 and wounded over 9,500 others.

Palestinian resistance movements have
 retaliated by launching rockets into Israel.


US 'hiding truth' on Malaysian plane

Former US lawmaker Ron Paul says the US
 is “hiding” the truth about the downing of a
 Malaysian passenger plane in east Ukraine
 last month.
"The US government's grown strangely quiet
 on the accusation that it was Russia or her
allies who brought down a Malaysian airliner
 with a buck anti-aircraft missile," Paul says,
 in an article published by Voices of Liberty.

US officials claim the plane was downed by
 a missile fired by anti-coup forces in Ukraine
 but Paul says that claim is baseless because
 the US has not provided any evidence for it.

"It’s hard to believe that the US, with all its spy
 satellites available for monitoring everything
 in Ukraine, that precise proof of who did what
and when, is not available," he says.

“When evidence contradicts our government’s
 accusations, the evidence is never revealed
to the public - for national security reasons,
of course.

Independent sources claim that the crash
 site reveals evidence that the bullet holes
 may have come from a fighter jet. If true, it
will implicate Western Ukraine,” he states.

Paul also condemns US officials for not wanting
 to reveal the truth. "Too bad we can’t count on
our government to just tell us the truth & show
us the evidence.

I’m convinced that it knows a lot more than it’s
telling us."


Israeli soldiers fire live bullets
 to curb West Bank protest

Israeli soldiers have used live ammunition and
 plastic bullets to disperse thousands of angry
 anti-war Palestinian protesters in the occupied
West Bank.

It came after Israeli soldiers clashed with
 Palestinian protesters after Friday prayers
 in the West Bank town of al-Khalil (Hebron).

Palestinian sources say 50+ Palestinians
were injured after Israeli forces used live
bullets to break up the protest in al-Khalil.

The demonstrators were protesting against
 the Israeli onslaught on the Gaza Strip now.

Initial reports say rallies also took place
in the cities of Nablus, Jenin, and Tulkarm,
 where protesters voiced their support for
the resistance in Gaza.

This is the latest in a recent string of pro-Gaza
 rallies in the occupied West Bank since Israel
 began pounding Gaza a month ago.

Over a dozen Palestinian protesters have so far
 been killed during clashes with Israeli forces
 in the West Bank.

The Israeli forces have also arrested a large
number of demonstrators across the occupied
 West Bank in recent days.

Palestinians in the West Bank said they were
 out in the streets to show solidarity with their
brothers and sisters killed in Gaza.

The latest developments come as Israel has
 resumed its attacks on the besieged region
 after a three-day ceasefire which ended at
 5:00 am GMT on Friday.

At least two Palestinians, including a child,
have been killed in northern Gaza and nearly
 a dozen people have been wounded in the
 latest Israeli attacks.

The Israeli regime’s 30 days of military attacks
 against the Gaza Strip, which began on July 8,
 have claimed the lives of 1,900 Palestinians,
including over 400 children, and wounded
 over 9,500 others.


Russia arrests five Ukrainian officers

Russia’s main federal investigating authority
 has arrested five Ukrainian army officers for
 shelling civilian areas in eastern Ukraine.

The Investigative Committee of Russia made
 their announcement on Friday, saying the 5
 were among hundreds of Ukrainian soldiers
 and border guards who laid down their arms
 and crossed into Russia to request refugee
 status on Monday.

According to the committee, evidence was
 present showing that the 5 detained soldiers
 were part of a Ukrainian mechanized brigade
 that indiscriminately shelled Luhansk region
 between July 19 and August 3.

The committee says the shelling, which
 left 10 civilians wounded or killed and at
least 20 buildings damaged, is confirmed
by other Ukrainian soldiers questioned.

If the 5 detained soldiers are convicted,
they could face up to 20 years in jail.

Thursday, Ukrainian government forces
 shelled a hospital in Donetsk, killing at
 least one person and injuring two others.

Ukraine’s mainly Russian-speaking regions
have witnessed deadly clashes between
 pro-Russia protesters and the Ukrainian
 army since the Kiev government launched
 military operations in mid-April in a bid to
 crush the anti US-installed-regime protests.

The ongoing violence has forced thousands
 of civilians to abandon their homes. Local
 authorities warn of a looming humanitarian
crisis as water, food and fuel supplies have
 dried up in the eastern regions.


CIA waterboarding is torture:
 International Red Cross

The International Committee of the Red Cross
 breaks its silence on the
CIA water-boarding
inflicted on suspects, and say it's torture and
a violation of the Geneva Conventions.

It's the first time that the Red Cross, based in
 Geneva, Switzerland, has publicly declared a
specific interrogation technique, as torture.

"The definition of torture is any technique
 causing severe pain or suffering, whether
physical or mental, inflicted for a purpose,
 such as:- the obtaining of information or a
confession, exerting pressure, intimidating
or humiliating," Anna Nelson, the Red Cross
spokesperson in Washington, says, Friday.

"Waterboarding fits into this category and
therefore qualifies as torture" --- under US
 and international law --- she adds.

Nelson says the recent
US' public defense
of waterboarding, has prompted the Red
Cross, which historically has not
spoken on specific detention practices,
to break its traditional silence.

"Given that this debate's been going on for
years and continues to come up, we do not
 want our silence to be misconstrued as
tacitly condoning this technique as
permissible," she says.

Many human rights activists & legal scholars,
 have long maintained that waterboarding and
 other cruel techniques inflicted on detainees
during George W. Bush's administration, were
 torture, which is prohibited by US federal law.

"There's no way any competent, knowledgeable
 attorney can say that waterboarding is legal
under the Geneva Conventions, the Uniform
Code of Military Justice, or the Convention
Against Torture," says retired Major General
Thomas Romig, a former US Army judge
advocate general.

The new condemnation of the CIA’s cruel
 actions, comes with a renewed US debate
over the spy agency’s practices after the
Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, which included
 waterboarding several detainees at so-
called secret black sites overseas.

 The CIA and US lawmakers have fought
 over publication of parts of a lengthy
 Senate Intelligence Committee report
 critical of the spy agency's conduct.

Last Friday, President Barack Obama said at
 a news conference that the coming CIA report
 would show some terrorism suspects suffered
 techniques that "any fair-minded person would
believe were torture."


Over 10,000 killed in Kiev’s
 punitive op - Ukrainian MP

Over 10,000 people have been killed
in Kiev’s punitive operation since April,
says a Ukrainian parliamentary group.

The MPs urge the president to declassify
 the full information on citizens killed.

The Ukrainian parliamentary group “For peace
and stability” says on Friday that the figure is
 given by volunteer groups working in the east
of the country.

“We have estimated that just in the first two
weeks of July nearly 2,500 Ukraine soldiers
were killed in the ‘anti-terrorist operation’,”
the group said, in a prepared statement, in
 the Verhovnaya Rada (Ukraine’s parliament).

“The number of wounded during the same period
 was over 5,000 people. Thousands of civilians
 fell victim to military actions. Most of them died
 from shrapnel wounds.

Thus, the preliminary number of the Ukrainians
 killed during the anti-terrorist operation, is more
 than 10,000 people according to our estimates,”
 says the co-chairperson of the parliamentary
 group, Sergey Gorokhov.

The MPs also addressed Ukrainian President
 Petro Poroshenko and the Kiev government,
 urging them to “declassify the official data
on the number of civilians, Ukraine soldiers,
and everyone who took part in the anti-
terrorist operation, who've been killed.”

Gorokhov states that the president gets
 a report on people killed every day, but
it is "classified".

Meanwhile, the families of those missing
in the military operation zone, petition the
 government each day, in the “hope that
 their close ones will be found,” he adds.

“According to local residents of the eastern
 regions, the bodies of Ukrainians are loaded
 into vehicles and taken to an unknown
destination, each day.

We demand the Ukrainian people be told the
 truth - bitter, heavy, but the truth,” he urges.

Earlier on Friday, the spokesperson for the
Ukrainian Security Council, Andrey Lysenko,
stated that fifteen Ukrainian soldiers were
killed in the last 24 hours.

“Over the last 24 hours, 7 armed forces
 personnel, and 8 border patrol agents
 were killed, while 79 were injured,”
Lysenko said.

Kiev's military operation has been intensifying
 since May. According to the Security Council’s
 estimates, over 400 soldiers have died in the
 operation, while 1,600 have been injured.

The UN estimates, as of Tuesday, that there
 have been over 1,300 civilian deaths, over
 4,000 have been injured, and over 100,000
people, have been forcibly displaced.

Moscow has called numerous times for a
unilateral ceasefire and for negotiations
 between the two conflicted sides.

“Instead of giving these people a hand,
 inviting them to the negotiating table, and
 agreeing on how to live in the country, the
 military operation is going on,” Russia's
 Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, said,
 way back in June.

He called for the start of a dialogue that should
 be based on the Geneva Statement of April 17,
 2014, and the roadmap that was developed by
 the Swiss representatives of the OSCE at the
 beginning of May.



Ukraine’s President Poroshenko, Friday,
 signed a parliament-approved bill which
increases the age limit for reservists, the
presidential press service reports, Friday.

The age limit for reservists liable for military
service is increased from 50 to 60 years for
privates, sergeants and sergeant-majors;
from 55 to 60 years for junior and senior
officers and 65 years for general officers.

Ukrainian deputies voted for the bill on
July 22nd.


West blocks Moscow’s UN plea to
reinstate ceasefire at MH17 crash site

The UN Security Council fails to adopt a
resolution on reinstating the ceasefire
at the Malaysian Airlines plane crash
site in eastern Ukraine, after Russia’s
draft was blocked by Western states.

“Unfortunately, some UNSC members have
reacted in their usual way as they oppose
 any criticism of the Ukrainian leadership,”
 Churkin says, adding that Lithuania, the
US and Australia proposed inappropriate
 amendments to the text.

“A few countries, such as Lithuania and
the US, started to suggest amendments,
saying that the draft lacks criticism of
the people they call ‘separatists’,”
Churkin adds.

Moscow’s resolution didn't concern the actions
 of either side in the conflict, the Russian envoy
 to the UN says. It was, rather, dedicated to the
 announcement published on the website of the
 Ukrainian commission investigating the crash.

According to that announcement, Kiev will
 not stick to the ceasefire, as international
 investigators have left the crash site.

As Churkin states, later on, the Ukrainian
 delegation to the UN informed the Security
Council that this wasn't true, and that the
ceasefire is still in force.

Thus Russia submitted a document urging
 the Ukrainian authorities to publicly clarify
 the situation, calling on both sides in the
 conflict “to restrain from any actions that
 could violate the integrity” of the crash site.

The UN Security Council unanimously adopted
 a resolution for an international investigation
 into the MH17 incident, and demanding safe
 access to the site for investigators. Russia's
 draft said the resolution shouldn't be violated.

However, shelling and fighting in the area
has continued, stopping the experts' work
several times over the past few weeks.

On Thursday, Kiev suspended the truce
 with self-defense forces at the crash site.

"The ceasefire in the plane crash zone,
 announced by the President of Ukraine
 at the request of international experts,
which has been thoroughly observed by
the Ukrainian Armed Forces, will not be
 in place at the beginning of the second
phase of the investigation," Ukraine's
 current government said.

The government claims the international
 mission was halted because of  “terrorist
 provocateurs” who “posed threats to the
 lives” of the recovery mission members.

The suspension of the ceasefire in the
MH17 crash area is a direct violation of
 the UN resolution, Vitaly Churkin states:

“The truce was approved by UN Security
Council resolution 2166, thus it is a clear
violation of the resolution, and will have
very serious consequences for the
international inspectors' ability to
conduct the investigation, when they
 decide to return to the area.”

Before the ceasefire was canceled, the
Netherlands, leading the international
probe, announced it was halting the
mission to recover victims and debris
of the July 17 MH17 crash, because
of fighting between Ukrainian forces
 and rebels in the area.

The international investigating team got
 to the site days after the tragic incident,
and was delayed for security reasons.

 Experts are expected to resume their
efforts once the situation allows.

Currently, at least 3 areas containing the
 Boeing-777’s debris remain unexamined
by the international mission, according
to the Ukrainian government.

 The majority of experts will leave Ukraine
 until a decision on resuming the operation
 is made, it said in a statement.


Russia to create rapid reaction force
 as relations with West get strained

Russia’s airborne troops are to double and
 be fundamentally rearmed over five years
 to be the basis of a rapid reaction force.

A high-ranking source at the General Staff
 of the Russian Armed Forces, says that the
Defense Ministry’s leadership approves of
 the ideas of airborne force commander,
Colonel-General Vladimir Shamanov, to
 approximately double the strength of the
 airborne troops’ manpower to 72,000
officers and men over five years.

Shamanov adds: airborne troops are going
 to expand their presence outside Russia.

The troops will be equipped with combat
drones as early as 2015, which will allow
 reconnaissance units to operate deeply
 inside the enemy’s rear.

“The plans for doubling the airborne troops’
strength, are quite realistic and relevant,
 as the vision of threats to Russia amid the
 crisis in Ukraine has changed,” a member
 of the military-industrial commission under
 the Russian government, Mikhail Remizov,

“Apparently, Russian Defense Minister Sergei
 Shoigu is determined to correct the mistakes
 made by Anatoly Serdyukov, whose reforms
 were aimed at slashing the airborne troops’
 strength of 35,000 men by half,” he says.

“Just a few years ago, Russia’s military reform
 was based on the assumption that the era of
 classical wars between countries had gone,
never to return.

 “All of a sudden it turns out that threats against
 Russia keep mounting. This circumstance has
 required building up the strength of the airborne
 troops, as the most mobile component of all,”
Mikhail Remizov says.

“British General Adrian Bradshaw, NATO’s
Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe,
 has said the alliance’s rapid reaction force,
 charged with the mission to deter Russia,
should incorporate ground and air forces.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, in turn,
said that Russia would give a symmetric
 response to NATO’s build-up. For this
reason, the plans for arming Russia’s
airborne troops with combat drones,
 looks very timely and appropriate,
 given the new challenges.

So far, this class of aircraft has been the
 greatest weakness of Russia’s military

“A considerable airborne troops build-up, was
 discussed at the Defense Ministry in 2012-13,
 but nobody hurried to translate it into reality.

“This decision was prompted by the current
political situation in Ukraine and the need
 to react to actions by our counter-parts,
such as the  NATO member-countries,”
 Colonel-General Viktor Yesin, former chief
 of the strategic missile forces’ staff, states.

“The airborne troops have a two-fold mission
 of dealing with local conflicts and serving as
 the backbone of peace-keeping forces. Of
late, the number of both types of challenges
has grown considerably, so the strength of
 mobile troops should be increased, on the
condition, though, that the overall build-up
 won't exceed the current overall strength
of Russia’s armed forces,” Yesin says.

“Converting Russia’s airborne troops into a full-
fledged rapid reaction force their material and
 logistics base should be reinforced considerably.

“An ever wider use of drones by mobile, naval
 and ground units is an overall world trend. The
 fact that the Russian Defense Ministry has set
 the task of arming the airborne troops with
drones is a very timely measure,” Yesin says
 in conclusion.


Israel pounds Gaza Strip after truce expiry

Israel has resumed pounding the Gaza Strip, shortly
 after the expiry of a 72-hour-long truce between Tel
 Aviv and Palestinian resistance movement, Hamas.

There are still no reports of potential casualties
from the renewed attack, which started after
 the lull expired at 0800 (0500 GMT) on Friday.

The Palestinian resistance is also reported to
have started rocket attacks on Israel. Over 2
 dozen rockets have been fired on Israeli cities
 including Ashkelon, Eshkol and Kivosim.

 Israeli officials say that most rockets landed in
open areas and there were some interceptions.

The developments came after indirect talks in
 Cairo failed to extend the ceasefire. A senior
 Hamas official has said the group would not
extend the truce, as Israel had not responded
to Palestinian demands at the negotiations.

Israeli tanks have started to redeploy to their
 previous positions during the Gaza war.

Thousands of Palestinians left their homes east
 of Gaza City on Friday in fear of Israeli attacks
 after the truce ended.


  Kiev turns off hot water --
  fears winter gas shortage

Kiev has turned off all hot water in the city
    to try to save gas for the winter months.

    The Ukrainian government is unsure how long
    people will be affected, or whether the measure
    will be enough to ensure winter heating.


White House: US won’t attack ISIL in Iraq

White House press secretary Josh Earnest
 has rejected any idea of a US plan to bomb
 militants in Iraq, saying the US doesn't have
 a military solution to the ISIL advances.

"There are no American military solutions to
 the problems in Iraq," Earnest tells reporters.

"These problems can only be solved with
 Iraqi political solutions.”

He says the US may choose military
action if US interests are endangered.

US-backed ISIL militants have terrorized
 entire communities: Shias, Sunnis, Kurds,
 Christians, Yazidis and others, as they
steadily advanced into Iraq.

White House and Pentagon officials
 have previously said, the US won't
take military action in Iraq until PM
 Nouri al-Maliki, a Shia allied to Iran,
 steps down.


Hamas ready to resume war
 if its demands are not met

The armed wing of Hamas, the Izzedine al-Qassam
 Brigades, calls on Palestinian negotiators in Cairo
 not to push for any extension of the 72-hour truce
 unless their demands are met, in particular, the
opening of Gaza’s port.

They say they are prepared to engage in a long
 war with Israel, if those demands are not met.
 The 72-hour truce is due to end at 0500 GMT
on Friday.

Over the past 3 weeks, almost 1,900 people
 have been killed in Gaza, the vast majority
 of whom, were Palestinian civilians.


Russia bans agricultural products from
 EU, USA, Australia, Norway, and Canada

Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev has signed
 a new decree banning all imports of beef,
pork, and poultry meats, fish, cheese,
milk, vegetables and fruit from Australia,
 Canada, the EU, the US and Norway.

The ban lasts a year, starting on August 7th.

The PM also says Russia has stopped transit
 flights by Ukrainian airlines to destinations
 such as Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia and
Turkey, adding that Russia is considering
 a ban on transit flights across Russia for
 EU/US Airlines to the Asia-Pacific region.

Western sanctions are a “dead-end track”,
 but Russia has been forced to respond to
 the measures taken by western countries,
 Medvedev adds.

Alcohol imports from both the EU and the
 US, will not be restricted.

“We are actually speaking of an embargo
on imports of entire product categories,
 from countries which have introduced
sanctions against Russian organizations
 and individuals,” Medvedev says.

Dmitry Medvedev has instructed the Federal
 Customs Service (FCS), to see that banned
 imports cannot cross the Russian border.

The Russian PM also warns against possible
 attempts to use the situation to raise prices.

"I'd like to warn that attempts to gain from
 price speculation in this situation, will be
 roughly stopped," Medvedev says.

The Russian PM adds that Moscow still
has a lot of trading partners abroad,
 which it hasn't placed on its sanctions
retaliation list.

The agricultural watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor
 announces plans to increase imports from
 Chile, which could include vegetables, fruit,
fish, shellfish, meat and milk.

“Imports of fish, which last year amounted
 to 53,000 tons, may grow two or three times.
 Shellfish imports might increase from 3,000
 tons to 15,000-20,000 tons,” the watchdog
 says in a statement.

Medvedev sincerely hopes "our partners’
 economic pragmatism will prevail over bad
political decisions, and they will think before
 trying to frighten Russia by imposing trade
restrictions on it and then, mutual trade and
economic partnerships will be restored to the
volumes which existed before. We would like
that to happen.”

In 2013, Russia imported $6.7 billion worth
of both meat & meat products. The largest
suppliers came from the now-banned states,
 like Denmark (6.6% of total Russian meat
products), Germany (6.4%), USA (5.3%),
and Canada (3.8%).

Medvedev believes the years' embargo
 Russia is imposing, will boost domestic
 agriculture. He accepts that Russian
farmers will have to come a long way,
 but says that it's a unique opportunity
to develop products to replace imports.

“We're only lagging behind in the production
 of certain varieties of meat and milk. We've
 to catch up -- and our farmers are ready to
 do so, especially if we help them.”

As a result of the ban, Russia’s production
 of agricultural products could grow by $10.8
 billion over the next 18 months, the Russian
 Minister for Agriculture , Nikolay Fyodorov,

The Governor of Krasnodar Region, Aleksandr
 Tkachev, has been quick to react to the news
 by saying farmers in the region will use the
chance to replace imported goods with
 their own produce.

“I've spoken to the heads of agricultural
 enterprises, about the presidential law
 banning imports of Western agricultural
 goods,” Tkachev says.

 “The mood is on the whole optimistic.
 Krasnodar's farmers have received a
 big stimulus to use all their potential.”

Krasnodar is a big agricultural player
 in Russia. It's the 3rd biggest producer
of meat & eggs in the country and the
4th biggest milk producing region.

Astrakhan Region in Russia’s south, also
 says it is ready to increase agricultural
production by 20–25 percent next year.

“There’s a real possibility that all the low
 quality goods, which have been imported,
 will not appear on Russia's market again.

 The country’s agriculture is now being given
 a historic chance for a breakthrough, to raise
 production, the variety of goods, and improve
 processing technology,” the Governor of the
 Astrakhan Region Aleksandr Zhilkin, says.

Banning certain imports from the West will provide
 “historic opportunities” for Russia’s more distant
 territories in the Ural Mountains and in the Far East.

“Russia is the richest country in the world and has
 unique marine resources, that, unfortunately, go
 abroad. However, the demand for these products
on the international market are very high,” Irina
Yarovaya, a Duma member from Kamchatka, says.

The new ruling will help Russia develop its
 agriculture and make it easier for Russian
farmers to market their products, head of
 the Duma Committee on Economic Policy,
 Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Igor
 Rudensky, says.


US ready for more sanctions
 against Russia – Obama

US President Barack Obama says Washington
 is ready to consider imposing more sanctions
 on Russia if Moscow does not change policies
 over Ukraine.

When asked if the sanctions are actually
 working, Obama said “We don’t know yet.”

He added that he believes “Sanctions are
working as intended, in putting enormous
pressure & strain on Russia's economy,”
 citing “estimates in terms of capital flight,”
 and “projections for Russian growth.”

 Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has a choice
 “to try to resolve the issues in eastern Ukraine
 through diplomacy and peaceful means... or
 alternatively, continue on the course he’s on,
 in which case he is going to be hurting his
 economy, and hurting his own people over
 the long term,” Obama said.


Donetsk People’s Republic PM
announces his resignation

Aleksandr Boroday, the prime minister of the
 self-proclaimed People's Republic of Donetsk
 (DPR) has announced he will resign.

 He will be replaced by Aleksandr Zakharchenko,
 one of the militia commanders and also a leader
 of the ‘Oplot’ movement.

 “I came here as a crisis manager, a start-upper,
 if you want. I’ve managed to achieve a lot in the
 past several months, the DPR's been established
 as a state,” Boroday told a media conference.

 Unlike Boroday, who originally comes from
 Moscow, Zakharchenko was born in the
 Donetsk region.

Boroday was appointed PM of the DPR on May
the 16th. He will continue working at the DPR
 government as an adviser to the prime minister.



European Union fruit & vegetable produce
 represents around 2.7 billion USD-worth of
 exports to Russia.

This is now stopped by Russia for one year
in retaliation for the sanctions the EU put
on Russia last week. 

Meat sourced products, dairy and other
foodstuffs are also banned, in a move
which will hit the EU hard.

Several countries are stating that they
intend to sue the EU, if sanctions hurt
their businesses.

US farmers are also hit.

(More details on the Finance column
on Rhondda Records' Home Page...)


Netherlands suspends search operation
 at MH17 crash site in Ukraine

Dutch PM Mark Rutte says it is dangerous for
international experts to remain in the region
 where the security situation is deteriorating.

About 80 international specialists were at the
 crash site, including 8 members of the OSCE
 Special Monitoring Mission, and experts from
 the Netherlands and Australia.

On July 31st, in Minsk, officials from Ukraine,
the OSCE and Russia, and representatives of
the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic
 agreed to a ceasefire within the humanitarian
corridor used by OSCE monitors to access
 the crash site.

Several days after the Boeing accident,
local militiamen found the fragments of
over 200 bodies at the crash site. All
were taken to the Netherlands for

Australian and Dutch experts wanted
 the passengers' remains and personal
belongings sent to the Netherlands.
 But this may now take several weeks.

The expert mission consists of 332 members
who are to be joined shortly by 68 Malaysian
 policemen. Up to 100 people will be working
 at the crash site daily, but will not conduct
 the investigation or collect evidence now.


Kiev ‘gave up on us’: Ukrainian commander
 tells why 400 troops escaped into Russia

The command in Kiev blatantly abandoned a group
 of the 400+ soldiers encircled by the self-defense
 forces, the senior Ukrainian officer who requested
 sanctuary in Russia with his men, reveals.

Lack of ammunition, food, fuel and clear orders
from commanders on what to do in the condition
 of encirclement, made the Ukraine troops cross
 the border, Major Vitaly Dubinyak, a battalion
 commander, states.

“For two weeks, we were fighting back without
 ammunition and fuel. I didn’t have an opportunity
 to feed my men for almost two weeks. We even
ran out of first strike rations. The personnel
 were more exhausted by despair than by the
 actual shelling,” Dubinyak says.

“Other than giving us a command ‘hold on,’
Kiev provided us with no other assistance.
And - during the last week - they aborted
 all communication. They simply gave up
on us,” he says.

438 soldiers, including 164 Ukrainian
 border guards, were let into Russia,
 on Sunday night.

The troops have been housed in a tent
 camp deployed near the checkpoint
 where they entered Russian territory.

“In order to save people, the commanders
 of units decided to cross the border with
Russia. All the equipment and weaponry
 had to be left on the Ukrainian side. The
 main thing was to save the people,” the
 commander stresses.

‘This civil war must be stopped’
Dubinyak says, and adds that he is
 surprised by the “almost brotherly”
 treatment his men received from
 their Russian colleagues.

“Those, who give orders to us are lying when
they say that we are in a war with Russia.
None of the Russian’s even gave a wry look.
They understand that we are hostages in
 this troubled situation,” he says.

“A medical check-up was organized for us here.
 The wounded received assistance. We were
 fed. We showered for the first time in a month.
 We're given clothes, with conditions required
 for recreation created for us,” the commander

According to Dubinyak, his men went through “a
 meat grinder” and they won’t return to battle again.

He urges the decision makers in Kiev to “fight
 on their own and send their own children to die.”

The commander also admits that the fighting in
 south-eastern Ukraine has turned into a full-
scale civil war.

“I don’t know how I’ll look into the eyes of the
 mothers of those of my boys, who died. But I
 know for sure that this civil war must be stopped.
"I’ve seen enough of the locals' tears and enough
 of my mens'. suffering. I’m sick of it. The main
 thing is that we’re alive. We’ll deal with the rest
 after we get home,” Dubinyak says.


Russia, UN call for humanitarian corridors in Ukraine
At the emergency UN Security Council meeting
 on Tuesday, Russia and the UN called for aid
 corridors to be established in eastern Ukraine.

But the Ukrainian envoy opposed this, said
 the situation is "manageable" and said that
 there is "no humanitarian crisis in Ukraine."

He accused Moscow of continuing the unrest
 by supporting the anti-coup regions.

John Ging, operations chief for the UN Office for
 the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA),
 said nearly four million people in the region were
 directly affected by the violence, with casualties
 rising and 1,000 people leaving the region daily.

He said 1,367 civilians and combatants have
 been killed in the contested regions and over
4,000 wounded in the fighting since mid-April.

The UN said that of the 117,910 people registered
 as internally displaced persons (IDPs) throughout
 Ukraine, 87 percent were from the east.

There are 168,677 Ukrainians registered as
having crossed into Russia: 60,000 of those
applying for refugee status and 115,952
applying for other ways of staying legally
 in Russia.

"However, this isn't the full picture, as many
 Ukrainians who fled their homes, have not
 registered with Ukrainian authorities, or
officially applied for assistance," he said.

"We call on the Ukrainian government to
address some of the key challenges to
 implementation of relief activities."
 "A unified system for IDPs is crucial to
 enable comprehensive analysis and an
understanding of the existing needs."

Suggesting that humanitarian assistance
be exempt from Ukrainian taxes, he calls
 for more efficient entry into Ukraine for
aid workers, plus the easier transfer of
medical supplies certified by the World
 Health Organization, into the region.

"We call on all sides to this conflict to enable
 free and safe movement for the population,
 while at the same time ensuring full access
 by humanitarian organizations to affected
populations remaining behind," he said.

Ambassador Vitaly Churkin of Russia said
 "indiscriminate shelling of housing blocs
 and critical civilian infrastructure" is
taking place now, in eastern Ukraine.

Shells fired by Ukrainian armed forces
"continue to fall into Russia," he said.
"There were about 20 such cases on
August the 3rd (Sunday)."

"There's a critical health and epidemiological
 situation in Lugansk. There's no electricity
 going to houses. There's no water either,
 because of shelling. There's no clean water.
There's a lack of telephone communications
and even waste is not being cleaned up ...
 Ukrainians have begun to leave the country
 en masse," Churkin said.

"Our country stands ready to undertake this great
 burden and does not need material assistance from
 outside," he continued. "We stand ready to provide
 humanitarian assistance to Ukrainians on our own."

But, he said, the situation was different in the
 Ukrainian capital.

The Moscow envoy said: "We've made multiple
 appeals to them for humanitarian corridors to
 evacuate children and the vulnerable, including
 child orphans and also sending humanitarian
 assistance from Russia, but Kiev has refused
 all these offers scornfully."

"Russia calls on the international community
 to take emergency measures to improve the
 humanitarian situation in eastern Ukraine,"
he said.

"We'd like to send a convoy with Russian
 humanitarian aid - with the accompaniment
 of the ICRC (International Committee of the
 Red Cross) - to where Internally Displaced
Persons are concentrated, in the east.

"We stand ready to act with optimal transparency.
 Let the international committee monitor convoys,
 their transport routes (and) distribution of aid."

Ukraine's acting permanent representative to
 the UN, Oleksandr Pavlychenko, in an attempt
 to counter Churkin's claim of Ukraine shelling,
said Russia "continues shelling settlements
 and armed forces" near their joint border.

"The number of Russian armed forces, heavy
armored vehicles & troops positioned along
 the Russian - Ukrainian border, has been
constantly increasing," Pavlychenko said.

"The shelling has resulted in casualties
 among civilians and soldiers & destroyed
 residential and administrative buildings."

He said "the government of Ukraine gives
 consideration to all recommendations by
the UN; there is no humanitarian crisis in
Ukraine: the situation is manageable."

Pavlychenko said his government was able to
 fulfill all social obligations, including retirement
 payments, social benefits and salaries, to the
 residents of Donetsk and Lugansk regions
 "except for some small towns" which remain
 under control of the separatists.

"If the Russian Federation really is interested
 in stabilization of the humanitarian situation
 in the Ukraine we propose just a few easy
steps to be made by Russia: stop sending
 mercenaries, weapons and ammunition to
 the territory of Ukraine, establish effective
 control over its part of the border to stop
the infiltration of illegal armed troops and
 weapons, stop provoking instability, and
 withdraw all military and paramilitary
formations of the Russian armed forces
from Ukrainian borders," he said.

The sooner those steps are taken by Russia,
Pavlychenko said, "the sooner the situation
 in my country will stabilize and we will get
back to normal life."

Liu Jieyi, China's permanent representative
to the UN, said the situation in Ukraine "is
a matter of deep concern to China."

 "We hope the international community will
play a constructive role in easing the
humanitarian situation in eastern Ukraine.

"We hope that the UN humanitarian agencies
 will strictly abide by principles of neutrality
 and objectivity."

He called for a ceasefire "as soon as possible"
 and said conducting comprehensive dialogue
 is "the only way out of the crisis in Ukraine."

"The international community should do more to
 promote peace and dialogue and create favorable
 conditions for the parties concerned, to maintain
 dialogue and engagement, and make constructive
 efforts for the political advancement of Ukraine's
 crisis," Liu said.

The parties should "meet each other halfway,"
 he said.

The situation in eastern Ukraine was described
 as a catastrophic, full-blown war by Russia's
UN envoy, Vitaly Churkin, at the UN Security
Council meeting.


Russia called for the urgent UNSC meeting

Russia’s Ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin
had said he hoped the meeting would convene
sooner, but the United Kingdom had not yet
given its consent.

He also said there had been enough time to
prepare for the meeting and added, “There
were cases when meetings were convened
in a shorter time.”

The Christian Science Monitor quotes the UN as
 saying that nearly one million people have been
 displaced by the escalating fighting in the two
 eastern Ukrainian regions of Donetsk & Luhansk.

According to Russia's regional authorities, over
 5,000 Ukrainian refugees enter Russia’s Rostov
 region daily.

“It's getting close to a humanitarian crisis here,”
says Alexander Titov, spokesperson for Rostov
 Governor Vasily Golubev.

“Depending on the fighting on any given day,
 between five and ten thousand people come
 across the border. We have 95 temporary
 refugee centres operating now, up from 15
in June. We try to send people on to other
regions as fast as we can but the numbers
are still swelling.”



Hamas, Israel accept new 72-hour ceasefire

The Palestinian resistance movement Hamas
 and Israel have agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire
 in the Gaza Strip, starting Tuesday morning.

Hamas spokesperson, Sami Abu Zuhri, said
 on Monday, that the group had told Cairo it
agreed to the truce -- proposed by Egypt.

A senior Israeli official confirmed that
temporary ceasefire would take
effect at
0500 GMT.

The official said an Israeli delegation will
 head to Egypt for talks to work out a long-
term truce in the next three days.

Israeli media quote an official as saying
 that there'll be no need for Israeli forces
 to be in Gaza, if the ceasefire is upheld.

"We agree to begin implementing Egypt's
 initiative. If the ceasefire is upheld, there
will be no need for any forces in the Gaza
 Strip," the unnamed Israeli official says.

The Palestinians, earlier, set a number
 of conditions for a ceasefire. The terms
 include: the withdrawal of Israeli forces
 from Gaza; lifting Israel’s blockade; and
the release of Palestinian prisoners
 incarcerated in Israel.


Kiev deploying missile launchers, multiple
 rocket systems near Donetsk - Moscow

Kiev keeps deploying missile launchers, including
 SS-21 (Scarab) and multiple rocket systems Uragan
 and Smerch in Donetsk as it “wants to continue the
 war” in eastern Ukraine, Russia’s Foreign Ministry
 says in a statement.


Over 400 Ukrainian troops
 cross into Russia for refuge

More than 400 Ukrainian troops have been
 allowed to cross into Russia after requesting
 sanctuary. It’s the largest, but not the first,
case of desertion into Russia by Ukrainian
 soldiers involved in Kiev’s military crack-
down, in the east of the country.

Rostov Region’s border guard spokesperson,
Vasily Malaev, says a total of 438 soldiers,
including 164 Ukrainian border guards,
were allowed into Russia, on Sunday night.

One of the Ukrainians was seriously injured on
 his arrival in Russia. He was taken to hospital
 for surgery, the officials added.

The other Ukrainian soldiers have been housed
 in a tent camp deployed near the checkpoint
 via which they entered Russian territory.

The Russian border guards are providing them
 with food and bedding.

Footage taken by Russian media at the scene
 shows the Ukrainian soldiers being handed
ration packs and resting in temporary shelter.

Those who agreed to speak on camera said
 they were relieved to be in safety for the first
time in weeks.

“We were given orders to leave our positions
 and go to Russia through a corridor. We were
 told it would be safe. Of course they, I would
 say, made us go fast from behind,” one of the
 soldiers, a BMP driver who wouldn't reveal his
 name or even show his face on camera, said.

“It was so bad back there. Hot, and so many
deaths and bad things,” another one, Dmitry,
said. “Folks can rest here. They gave us a
 chance to wash, gave us new clothes. We
 are thankful.”

“We have been in those fields for more than
 six months and are very tired,” he added.

Another one, Yaroslav, said he wants to
go back to his family in Ukraine.

“I want to do something peaceful. My
 contract expired four months ago,”
 he explained.

The Ukrainian Security Council says it
 is keeping in touch with the soldiers
“through diplomatic channels,” but it
did not give an exact number of how
 many troops had crossed the border.

“A Foreign Ministry representative is now
working with them, and negotiations over
their return are ongoing,” Ukraine Security
Council representative Andrey Lysenko said.

All their equipment and vehicles were taken
intact by the Russian troops.

The flow of deserters from the ranks of Kiev's
 Army and National Guard seems to be growing
 during the escalating violence in Donets and
 Lugansk Regions, where Kiev is fighting armed
 anti-government militias.

In late July, 41 Ukrainian troops fled to Russia
 to escape fighting in eastern Ukraine. They're
 now being prosecuted in Ukraine for deserting
 in the heat of battle.

Several Ukrainian units are reported to be
 cut off from supply lines after attempted
offensive operations, which brought them
 behind the militia-controlled territories...
 and close to the Russian border.

The Ukrainian troops, while far superior to the
 militia in terms of heavy weapons, suffer from
 poor logistics.

 Many soldiers complain about lacking even
 basic supplies like food and water, on the
 frontline. The situation is aggravated by
cases of apparent negligence from the
command, with units being supplied with
 faulty equipment, coming under friendly
 fire, or simply left behind while retreating
 from militia counter-attacks.

A YouTube video allegedly shows a Ukrainian
 soldier explaining how he has to catch and
 cook snakes, as his unit receives no rations.

This causes serious morale problems in the
 army, with more critical voices saying the
Ukraine de facto regime has no infantry
troops, and has no other way to fight, but
by leveling militia-held cities to the ground
 with artillery and air strikes.

There is rising resistance to the military
 campaign from Ukraine's population, with
 several cases of mass protests against
 the latest mobilization drive, as mothers
 and wives of the conscripts took to the
streets to demand that their loved ones
 not be drafted into the army.



Over 700 Ukrainian government troops have
 surrendered to local militias in the Donetsk
 region, Novorossiya news agency says.
“There's a message from the militiamen that
702 members of the Ukrainian army have
surrendered in Shakhtersk, which is being
 held by joint militia forces,” the agency
quotes one of the militia commanders
as saying.

This information could not be confirmed
from other sources.

Militiamen also say they used heavy
weapons against Kiev's troops twice
 on Monday.


Russia launches aerial war games
Russia has launched aerial "war games" in
its central and western districts, a Russian
 air force spokesperson says.

Igor Klimov says the 5-day drill began Monday
 and includes aircraft such as Su-27 & MiG-31
 fighter jets, the Su-34 bomber, as well as Mi-8,
Mi-24 and Mi-28N helicopters.

The drill tests “aircraft weapons on land and air
targets on new ranges, and will conduct real
 and electronic launches of anti-aircraft missiles
 in Ashuluk (Astrakhan region in southern Russia)
 specifically designed to improve coordination
 between aviation and anti-missile defenses,”
 says Klimov.

Klimov says the drills are planned to continue
 until August 8 and that the exercises are the
first in a series to improve coordination in the
Russian military.

The latest drill takes place in the middle of
Ukraine crisis, where government forces
 are attacking anti-fascist self defense militias
 in the eastern regions bordering Russia.


9 UN staff members killed in Gaza

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for
 Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) says nine of its
staff members have been killed in the Israeli
offensive against the Gaza Strip.

The UNRWA says in a statement that violence is
 devastating Gaza for the third time in six years
and that the staff and other people, are in the
line of fire.

The UNRWA's director, Robert Turner, calls the
loss of staff, a tragedy that can't be forgotten.

“Consistently from the beginning, we called
on all parties to the conflict to respect the
neutrality and viability of our installations,
to use proper precautions, distinctions &
proportionality, when dealing with military
targets near the installations,” Turner says.

“The locations of all of these installations have
been passed to Israel's military multiple times,
 they know where these shelters are. How this
still continues to happen, I don’t understand,”
he adds.

On Sunday, Israeli forces struck a UN-run school
 in the southern city of Rafah, killing at least 10
 Palestinians and injuring dozens others.

The school was sheltering 3,000 Palestinian
refugees who had fled Israel’s relentless
attacks on the blockaded enclave.

Over 1,822 people, including 400 children, have
been killed & over 9,400 injured since July 8th,
when Israel began attacking the Gaza Strip.

The Israeli military says three Israeli civilians
and 64 soldiers have been killed in the conflict.

 Palestinian resistance movement Hamas puts
 the fatalities at over 150.


Ukraine fires missiles into Russia
and where OSCE Observers work

9 missiles fired by Kiev's Grad missile launchers
 landed in Russian territory, in Tarasovsky District
 in Rostov Region, says Russia's Security Service.

The spokesperson says that 9 craters from Grad-
launched missiles were found in Mityakinskaya, a
 village in Rostov region --- no casualties reported.

 But, since the conflict began, one Russian has
 been murdered by the shelling and nine injured.

Lugansk faces a humanitarian catastrophe, as
Kiev's forces fire indiscriminately into the city.

Russia's border checkpoint at Gukovo crossing
 was shelled from Ukraine's side twice, Sunday.

 OSCE observers and journalists were working
 at the checkpoint, as it was being shelled.

 Moscow is showing remarkable restraint
and patience, in the face of such attacks.


Palestinians launch fresh
barrage of rockets into Israel

On Sunday, a fresh barrage of rockets fired from
hit Israel's Sdot Negev, Nahal Oz & Alumim,
and a
mortar shell exploded in Eshkol.

Rocket alarm sirens blared in several areas of
Israel's Hof Ashkelon, and Eshkol and the Sha'ar

 HaNegev region were under Code Red missile alert.

Israel’s Tourism Minister Uzi Landau says that
 the military’s power is diminishing dramatically
and that it has failed to break Hamas.

An Israeli soldier has been wounded by sniper fire
 in northern Gaza and transferred to Tel HaShomer.

The army says at least 64 soldiers have died since
 July 8th. Palestinian resistance groups dispute the
 number, saying the casualties are much higher.

Israel's aerial and ground attacks on the besieged
 Gaza Strip continued relentlessly for the 27th day,
 causing more death and destruction. Nearly 60
 people were killed in Israel's attacks on Sunday.

Another UN school sheltering displaced
in the southern town of Rafah
was hit, leaving
eleven people dead and
  thirty injured.

Earlier, airstrikes claimed the lives of at least
33 Palestinians, including several children.

 Ten of the victims -- members of the same
family --
were killed in Rafah.

Thousands of people have staged marches
different countries to protest against the
Israeli military aggression against
Palestinians in
the blockaded Gaza Strip.


US to Train, Arm Ukraine National Guard in 2015
---  EU to also sell armaments to Kiev  ---

The US administration has notified Congress of
 its plans to train and arm the Ukrainian national
 guard next year, the Pentagon says, as the US
 continues to intensify its response to Russia's
 support for rebels in eastern Ukraine.

"The Defense Department & State Department
have notified Congress of our intent to use $19
 million in global security contingency funds to
 train and equip 4 companies and one tactical
 headquarters of the Ukrainian national guard,
 as part of their efforts to build their internal
defense capacity," Pentagon spokesperson
 Rear Admiral John Kirby, tells reporters.

The training, requiring congressional approval,
 will take place at a location in Ukraine which
 hosts multilateral exercises, Kirby says. The
 trainers will be provided by US Army Europe
 and the California National Guard, he adds.

Earlier, US President Obama urged Vladimir
Putin to stop supporting separatists in east
 Ukraine & seek a diplomatic end to the crisis.

While the US repeatedly slams Russia's
 troop buildup on the border with Ukraine
 and its support for the rebels, the Obama
 administration has limited military aid to
non lethal aid, such as medical supplies
 and helmets.

The EU is now complicit in murder in the south
east of Ukraine, says Russia's President Putin,
by allowing arms sales to the current regime,
which came to power through violence, is
extremely anti-Russian, and is now using
 ballistic missiles on civilians in rebel areas.

EU ‘quietly’ lifts ban on supplying Kiev
 with weapons and technology – Russia

The European Union has “quietly” agreed to
 lift restrictions supplying Kiev with military
 technology & equipment which can be used
for the “repression” in the country, Russia's
 Foreign Ministry says.

"During a recent meeting of the Council of Europe
 in Brussels, leaders of EU member states agreed
 'on the quiet' to remove restrictions on exports to
 Kiev of equipment that could be used for internal
 repression," the ministry says in a statement on
its website. "The Export of military technologies
 and equipment were also allowed."

Moscow slams the move as "contradicting the
rules on military technology and ammunition
exports which have been earlier applied by the
 EU" and also "pierced" with double standards.

The EU approved its rules for controlling the export
 of weapons and ammunition on December 8th, 2008.

Criterion No.3 calls on EU member states, to stop
 issuing export licenses for military equipment and
 technologies that can provoke or prolong conflict.

The EU's decision to restart issuing licenses for
 special military equipment exports comes despite
 the continuing “anti-terrorist operation” in east
 Ukraine, the ministry says.

“It is obvious why the EU is ignoring the indisputable
 facts of the shelling of Russian territory [in Russia's
 Rostov region] by the Ukrainian side: the perspective
 of feeling your own involvement in such actions
 creates certain discomfort in Brussels,” the
 Russian statement says.

The ministry calls upon its European counter-
parts “to follow logic,” and not the "prodding"
from Washington.

“A decision to limit the supply of ammunition
and weaponry to Ukraine should have been
introduced, after the launch of the so-called
‘anti-terrorist operation’ in the Donbas and
Lugansk Regions.

It isn't too late to restore the ban,” the
ministry says.

Restrictions were introduced by the EU Council
in February 2013, when Viktor Yanukovich was
 president and there was severe confrontation
 between Maidan protesters and police.

“Then the EU decided it was ‘wrong’ to supply
 the  ‘Yanukovich regime’ with weapons,”
 Moscow points out.

Kiev’s so-called “anti-terrorist operation” in
the eastern regions of Ukraine has intensified
 lately. The most recent crackdown was in the
 village of Gorlovka, in the Donetsk Region.
It resulted in 31 civilians being killed there.

According to UN figures, at least 1,129 people
 have been killed, and nearly 3,500 wounded
 in eastern Ukraine since the start of the army
operation in April. Also, 100,000 people have
 been forcibly displaced.

The latest UN report says that the cause of the
 rising death toll is intensified artillery shelling
 of civilian residential areas and the so-called
 “collateral damage” in heavily-populated areas.


Israel kills 150 Palestinians over "missing" officer

Israel killed 150+ Palestinians in the Gaza Strip
 in the past 24 hours, after Tel Aviv's false claim
 that Hamas had captured one Israeli soldier.

Israel bombarded the south Gaza town of Rafah
 on Saturday, after it was reported that an Israeli
 soldier had been captured by resistance fighters.

Hamas denies capturing an Israeli soldier, saying
 the missing trooper might have been killed in the
 Israeli bombardment on Friday after Tel Aviv broke
 the internationally agreed three-day ceasefire.

Hamas' Qassam Brigades state that they
are unaware of the missing soldier's status,
 or events surrounding his disappearance.

At least 35 Palestinians are killed on Saturday
in Israeli bombardments and shelling, in and
around Rafah early Saturday, says Palestinian
 health official Ashraf al-Kidra and adds: Rafah’s
 main hospital is evacuated because of attacks.

Elsewhere in Gaza, Palestinian officials report
 over 150 airstrikes, including one against the
 Islamic University in Gaza City.

Friday’s escalation came after Israel abruptly
ended a 72-hour humanitarian ceasefire with
 Hamas, just a few hours after it began.

According to Tel Aviv, the Israeli death toll now
 stands at 66, including 63 soldiers and 3 civilians.

 Hamas puts the figure at about 150, which is the
 heaviest loss of life for the Israeli military in years.

The Palestinian death toll from Israel’s 26 days of
 onslaught on Gaza has now reached nearly 1,650,
 with 9,000 people injured. Most of the casualties
 have been civilians, including a large number of
 women and children.



The head of the CIA has apologized privately to
 lawmakers after an internal review reveals that
 CIA employees secretly monitored, as alleged,
the computer use of certain Senate staffers.

Director John Brennan’s admission this week
 that members of his agency “acted in a manner
 inconsistent with the common understanding”
 among the CIA and the Senate Intelligence
 Committee comes months after Sen. Dianne
 Feinstein (D-California), chair of that panel,
 complained to Congress that her staff was
 subjected to covert monitoring, as they
worked on an official investigation into
 CIA detention and interrogation practices.

That report — a 6,300-page review of tactics
 employed by the CIA, considered by some to
be forms of torture — is not made public.

Dean Boyd, a spokesperson for the CIA, told
 journalists at McClatchy that an investigation
 into Sen. Feinstein’s allegations led the CIA
 to determine that some degree of wrongdoing
 did occur, and an additional review is being
 undertaken to examine what action, if any,
the agency will take.

Sen. Feinstein says she has "grave concerns
that the CIA's search may well have violated
 the separation of powers principle of the US

“I am deeply dismayed that some members of
 the Senate have decided to make spurious
 allegations about CIA actions that are wholly
 unsupported by the facts,” Brennan, the CIA’s
 director, had said, before his admission. “I am
very confident that the appropriate authorities
 reviewing this matter will determine where the
 wrongdoing, if any, occurred, in either the
executive branch, or the legislative branch.”

According to McClatchy, Feinstein’s staff is still
 being scrutinized. The Senate Sergeant at Arms
 office, Jonathan Landay and Ali Watkins reports,
 is investigating whether or not the Intelligence
 Committee staff removed classified documents
 without authorization.

Earlier this month, the Department of Justice
 confirmed that, after a careful review, it failed
 to find sufficient evidence to carry on with a
 criminal investigation into the CIA’s spying.

President Obama refused to back any inquiry,
way back in March, at any level.


Israelis, Palestinians clash at rallies in West Bank

Clashes have erupted in several areas in the
 occupied West Bank between Israeli soldiers
 and Palestinians rallying against Tel Aviv’s
massacre of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

The scuffles occurred in different areas of the
 occupied West Bank including al-Khalil city
 (Hebron), Bethlehem, and Beit Ummar, as Israeli
 soldiers used live bullets to attack those who
 demonstrated in solidarity with the Gazans.

“Israel's forces are not using regular dispersal
 weapons such as smoke grenades and shock
 grenades, but they are using live ammunition,”
 states Press TV correspondent Hanna Qassis.

About 22 Palestinians have been injured during
 the clashes.

Palestinians threw stones and Molotov cocktails
 in retaliation.

The West Bank Palestinians say they're on the
 streets, to show solidarity with their brothers
 and sisters being killed in Gaza.

“Palestinians in Gaza are the same people, the
same blood, and the same history, therefore
 they're clashing with Israeli forces to express
 their anger over the massacre taking place
in the Gaza Strip,” Qassis adds.


Israel kills dozens of Palestinians during Gaza truce

The Tel Aviv regime has unilaterally ended a UN-
brokered ceasefire in Gaza, with the Israeli army
 launching fresh deadly attacks on civilian sites
 across the besieged Gaza Strip.

Palestinian officials say over 60 Palestinians
 were killed and 200 more injured after tanks
hit a major shopping centre and residential
areas in southern Gaza on Friday.

Israeli media reports Tel Aviv has informed
 the United Nations that the ceasefire in the
 impoverished Palestinian region is over.

Israel's PM Benjamin Netanyahu accuses
 resistance groups of violating the truce.

However, Hamas and resistance groups
reject the allegation, saying that Israeli
attacks on Rafah provoked retaliatory
fire from Palestinian fighters.

Sources say the 72-hour humanitarian lull
was meant to allow Palestinians to bury
their dead and treat the wounded.

The Israeli military alleges that one of its
soldiers is now held by resistance fighters
 in the Gaza Strip.
Palestinian fighters say they killed 15 more
Israeli soldiers, south of Gaza.

Also on Friday, the Israeli military confirms
that 5 of its soldiers died in a mortar strike
near the impoverished territory.

Israel's military says it's so far lost nearly 61
soldiers in fights with Palestinian resistance
 fighters. Hamas says 146+ Israeli soldiers
 have been killed over the past 24 days.

This is the heaviest loss of life for Israel's
military, in years.


East Ukraine clashes kill 14, including 10 troops
Fierce clashes between Ukrainian troops & anti-
coup forces have killed 14 people, including 10
 government soldiers, in the east of the country.

Ukrainian military spokesperson, Oleksiy
 Dmytrashkivsky, says Friday that clashes
took place in Shakhtersk, 25 kilometers
away from the crash site of Malaysian
lines Flight MH17.

The spokesperson adds that the 10 bodies
are confirmed as Ukrainian soldiers and the
 remaining four have not yet been identified.

According to the Ukrainian army, its forces
were ambushed in the town.

Kiev's military says it has re-launched a broader
 offensive against anti-coup forces after a day-long
 ceasefire;  it claims it won't carry out operations in
 the immediate vicinity of the MH17 crash site.

A team of 70 international experts on Friday has
finally arrived at the crash site to conduct search
 operations in a bid to recover the remains of some
of the 298 victims of the July 17 crash. Over 200
bodies have so far been found.

The group of experts has been unable to access
 the area for several days in a row, due to fighting
 around the site.

Anti-coup forces have repeatedly accused Kiev
 of blocking access to the crash site by fighting
 in the area.

Ukraine launched military operations in Donetsk
 and Lugansk in April, to crush anti-coup forces
 there. Violence intensified in May after the two
 regions held local referendums, in which their
 residents voted overwhelmingly in favour of
 independence from Ukraine.

The United Nations says at least 1,129 people
 have been killed in the ongoing military attack
 on eastern Ukraine.


Russian minister calls for reversal of
dangerous trends which preceded WWI

Russian Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky compares
 the policy of sanctions against Russia to the hysteria
 which preceded the outbreak of World War One.

The minister, who attended the “Great War, Lessons
 of History” public forum on Thursday says sanctions
 are not a liberal instrument.

 Medinsky, who is a graduate of the Moscow State
 Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), tells
 the forum that his University lecturers taught him
 that “sanctions are an economic instrument,
 which ruling elites use to inflict direct economic
 damage, including on one’s own business and
 citizens, in pursuit of their political goals.”

“It's a Stalinist approach, I would say,” he says.

He draws some dangerous parallels between
 what’s happening now, and the run up to WWI.

“Hysteria, the growth of nationalism, appeals to
 battered national pride, and a spying mania,” all
filled newspapers in the pre-war years, and can
also be seen today, Medinsky says, calling for
a reversal of these dangerous trends.

“We, the Europeans, should be on one side of
 the barricades, in one fortress, to defend our
 common values, history and culture,” Russia's
 culture minister says.


"I killed 13 Palestinian kids today": Israeli sniper

An Israeli sniper has admitted to killing 13 children
 in the Gaza Strip in one day, as Tel Aviv continues
 its aerial and ground attacks in the besieged strip.

Posting on an Instagram account, David Ovadia
 released a photo of himself holding a sniper rifle.

The image with his post, however, was deleted
 entirely by hackers from an anonymous group.
The group has launched hundreds of attacks
 on Israeli websites over the past two years.

The move was reportedly followed by the group’s
 cyber attacks on Israel's Mossad and Ministry
of Military Affairs.

The development comes as Tel Aviv claims that
its army has been targeting Palestinian fighters
 from resistance group Hamas and it describes
 the growing death toll, as "collateral damage".

Israel has pounded the Gaza Strip since July 8.
 More than 300 children have so far been killed.

Israeli sources have confirmed the deaths of
56 soldiers. Hamas says the toll is much higher.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu pledges to
complete the destruction of Gaza's tunnels
with, or without, a ceasefire.

Tel Aviv has also mobilized 16,000 reservists for
 the ground military operations in Gaza, putting
 the total number at 86,000.

Tel Aviv has targeted hospitals, clinics, and
civilian shelters, over the past 24 days.


Ukrainian parliament rejects PM's resignation

The Ukrainian parliament on Thursday failed
 to approve the resignation tendered by Prime
 Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk last week, the
 parliamentary press service said.

Yatsenyuk's resignation was backed by only 16
of 339 deputies present at the 450-seat assembly.

The decision means that Yatsenyuk and the
current cabinet will continue to fulfill their
 duties until parliamentary elections, which
 are widely expected to be held in October.

Yatsenyuk, a 40yr-old pro-European technocrat,
 took charge of Ukraine's cabinet in late February,
 following the anti-government street rallies which
 toppled ex-President Viktor Yanukovych and the
 former government.

Last week, Yatsenyuk tendered his resignation
in protest against the "ineffectiveness" of Kiev's
parliament after the collapse of the ruling group.


UN Rights Chief: Israeli Attacks in Gaza
 “Deliberate Defiance” of International Law

UN human rights chief Navi Pillay lashes out at the
 Zionist entity on Thursday, over its attacks in Gaza,
 saying that such attacks are considered as Israel's
 "deliberate defiance" of international law.

Pillay slams the country's attacks on homes, schools,
 hospitals and United Nations facilities, which shelter
 250,000 civilians in Gaza.

"There appears to be a deliberate defiance of the
 obligations that international law imposes on Israel,"
 the South African tells reporters.

Pillay says that repeated calls to respect the laws of
 war have gone unheeded during the latest crisis and
in previous spikes in the Israeli offensive.

"The same pattern of attacks is occurring now on
 homes, schools, hospitals, UN premises. None of
 this appears to me to be accidental," she says.

She speaks 1 day after Israeli shells slammed into
 a UN school in Jabalia refugee camp, which was
 sheltering some 3,300 homeless Gazans, killing
 at least 16 people.

Pillay says that, under international law, civilian
 facilities should not be attacked, noting that due
 warning must be given before an attack, in order
to allow civilians to be evacuated.

"It is completely unconscionable that the
 proportionality & precaution international
 law requires, is being ignored," says Pillay.

She also criticizes Israel's strikes on Gaza's
only power plant, and on its water and
sewerage systems.

The UN Human Rights Council has voted
 to open an inquiry into the Gaza offensive,
despite fierce opposition from the Zionists
 and their global sponsor, the United States.

"We cannot allow impunity. We cannot allow
this lack of accountability to go on," Pillay
says, calling into question any investigation
by Israel into its own abuses.

"I join the world in condemning the aggression
that is taking place in Gaza, and particularly the
killing of civilians. This is wrong and it will always
be wrong," she concludes.


Egypt must reopen Rafah crossing
soon: Iran diplomat

A senior Iranian diplomat says Egypt’s delay
 in issuing permits for the delivery of Iran’s
 humanitarian aid to Gaza is “unacceptable”,
urging Cairo to immediately reopen the
Rafah border crossing.

Cairo’s long delays in issuing permits to
 flights carrying Iran’s food and medical
aid to people in the besieged Gaza Strip
 through Egypt is “unacceptable”, Iran’s
 Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab/Africa
Affairs, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, says.

“We strictly call on the relevant officials in
 Cairo to speed up the issuance of permits,”
 the Iranian official says.

He adds that 57 Palestinian infants, children
 and women, who've been critically injured in
the Israeli regime’s atrocities in the coastal
 enclave, are waiting for Egypt to allow them
 to fly to Iran for medical treatment.

Amir-Abdollahian  notes that Iran’s first cargo
of 100 tons of humanitarian aid, and the list of
 injured Palestinians ready for transfer to Iran,
 were placed at the disposal of Egypt's Foreign
 Ministry & Egypt’s interest section in Tehran,
 a few days ago, “but no flying license has yet
 been issued.”

Despite the international outcry, Cairo is
 keeping the Rafah border crossing closed.
 The 12-kilometer crossing links Egypt to
 the Gaza Strip, which has been under a
crippling Israeli siege, since 2007.

On July 24th, Amir-Abdollahian said that
 the consignment of relief aid provided by
 the Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS)
for Gazans had been flown into Cairo &
was waiting to be cleared for transfer
 into Gaza, via the Rafah border crossing.

At least 1,262 people have been killed
in Israel's aggression on the besieged
Gaza Strip since July 8th. Over 7,000 -
mostly civilians - have been injured.

The Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas's
 military wing, has been launching retaliatory
 attacks against Israel. Tel Aviv confirms 53
 Israeli soldiers as having been killed in the
Gaza war, but Hamas puts the number at
over 100.


Criticizing Israel ends political careers in US: Rozzo

What Israel is doing in the besieged Gaza strip
is a “massacre” and the “ethnic cleansing” of
 Palestinians & US officials “can’t say anything,
 because this can end a lot of political careers,”
an American political analyst in New Jersey says.

“The US and its political structure supports Israel
 because Israel is the largest military client in the
 Middle East,” says Constantino Rozzo, a former
candidate for the second Congressional district
 in New Jersey.

“Palestine seems to be the largest open-air prison
 camp in the world, and what’s going on with Israel
 now (& our politicians won’t reveal this or condemn
 what’s going on) but what’s going on is a massacre,
 what’s going on is a human rights abuse,” Rozzo
 says on Wednesday.

The Zionist regime’s mission is “ethnic cleansing
 and destroying the Palestinian people,” he notes.

US lawmakers from across the aisle on Capitol Hill
 have said they will “stand with Israel” in its deadly
 offensive on Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip.

On Monday, Republican & Democrat lawmakers
gathered at an event hosted by the National
Leadership Assembly for Israel, to express
their opposition to any kind of criticism of
Israel’s atrocities.

“Nobody can say anything, because it’s pretty
 hard to say anything, because this can end a
lot of political careers, because Israel has a
 lot of power, a lot money behind this,” he says.

Israel has been pounding Gaza, killing innocent
 residents of the impoverished Palestinian strip
 since July 8th.

The Palestinian death toll from over 3 weeks
of air, sea and ground assaults on the block-
aded coastal sliver, is now over 1,300, with
more than 7,500 people wounded.



Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov expresses
 his disappointment over the UN Security Council’s
 inability to confirm the key provisions of resolution
 2166, on the Malaysian Boeing crash.

"Ending hostilities in territory where the Malaysian
 Boeing’s wreckage is still lying, should be a priority
 step to be taken to fulfill resolution 2166,” he says.

He recalls President Poroshenko ordering an
 end to military attacks within 40 kilometers
 around the Boeing crash site - and how his
 order was followed by Ukraine’s National
 Security and Defense Council stating that
 Ukraine's army would stop the security
 operation, only after the militias were
squeezed out of the crash area.

On Tuesday night, the US, UK & Lithuania,
 rejected Russia's proposed statement on
the need to respect resolution 2166.

Lavrov denies that Russia and militia fighters
 are keeping international inspectors from the
 Boeing crash site.

“I've seen an interview with OSCE representatives,
 including the Dutch, who were trying to get to the
 crash area accompanied by militias protecting them.

 “But they couldn't do it, because the Ukrainian army
 grossly violated the UN Security Council resolution,”
 states Lavrov.

Given the absurdity of the current situation,
 Lavrov dares to suggest that perhaps Russia
should send peacekeepers there, to provide
 international access to the Boeing crash site.

“Against the background of these obvious facts
 -- plus calls on Russia to ensure the access of
international experts to the crash site -- I don't
 have any other reaction than to urge the UN
 Security Council to pass a resolution inviting
 Russia to deploy its peacekeepers on the
perimeter of the Boeing crash area for
 security reasons -- if everybody is so sure
 that only Russia can do anything about it,
 and it is impossible to do business with
 the Kiev authorities any longer,” he says.



As Chile, Peru, recall envoys from Israel,
tyrant Israel earns nothing but hatred...

Israel’s international isolation is growing,
 as Chile & Peru join other Latin American
countries & recall their envoys from Tel

"Given the escalation of Israeli military operations
 in Gaza, the government of Chile, in coordination
 with others in our region, has decided to call in
for consultation Santiago's ambassador for Chile
 in Tel Aviv, Jorge Montero," the Chilean Foreign
Ministry statement says.

The statement adds that Israel's acts in Gaza
“breach fundamental norms in international
 humanitarian law” --- referring to the civilian
victims and strikes on hospitals and schools.

A similar statement is also published by the
 Peruvian Foreign Ministry, condemning the
Israeli operation in Gaza.

Santiago and Lima’s move comes nearly two
weeks after Brazil and Ecuador recalled their
 ambassadors, in protest against Israel’s
 atrocities in the tiny coastal sliver.

Venezuela & Bolivia, who cut ties with Tel
Aviv over Israel’s 2009 war on Gaza, have
also strongly condemned Israel's actions.

Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Costa Rica, Cuba,
Mexico and Venezuela, are among the 29
 countries that voted in favor of a probe by
the UN Human Rights Council into Israel’s
 war crimes in Gaza.


Kiev's bloody eastern Ukraine campaign

Ukraine's President Poroshenko has called
 a ceasefire within a 40km radius of where
 the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 crashed.

Russia urges all parties in east Ukraine
to lay down their arms while inspectors
 investigate what caused the tragedy.

Kiev is ready for a cease-fire “now,” US
Secretary of State John Kerry claims,
 after seeing Ukraine’s Foreign Minister
 Pavlo Klimkin, in Washington.

Kerry says Poroshenko is also ready to
start talks with militias in the southeast.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov,
 in a 'phone conversation with Kerry, had
 earlier urged Washington to influence
Kiev to achieve a prompt ceasefire and
start negotiations with the southeast.

Lavrov stressed the need to return to
the accord agreed at Geneva on July 17,
including an end to the use of force, and
 to promptly start an open, accountable
 process of constitutional reform which
includes all the regions of Ukraine.

The two diplomats agreed to implement
 the UNSC resolution which demands an
international, independent investigation
 into the causes of the MH17 disaster &
a ceasefire in the region surrounding
 the crash site.

Today, Monday, a nusing home is hit,
killing several residents, and Kiev
immediately blames anti-fascist
self defence forces, in Gorlovka.

31 civilans were killed there over the
last 24 hours, as Kiev's forces pound
the city with high powered shells and
rockets - with no guidance systems.



The Israeli regime is intensifying its attacks
 on hospitals in the Gaza Strip, as a shortage
 of medicines hits the tiny besieged enclave.

Basman Alashi, director of Wafa Hospital,
 says hospitals there cannot cope with the
 rising number of wounded in Israeli attacks.

The humanitarian aid body ‘Doctors without
Borders’ (MSF) strongly condemns Israel’s
attack, particularly on Gaza’s Shifa hospital,
where women and children were sheltering.

“Targeting hospitals and their surroundings
 is completely unacceptable, and a serious
violation of International Humanitarian Law,”
says Tommaso Fabbri, MSF’s head of the
mission in the Occupied Territories, adding:

“Whatever the circumstances, health facilities
 & medical staff must be protected & respected.
 But in Gaza today, hospitals are not the safe
havens they should be.”

Israeli warplanes & tanks have already
bombed several hospitals across the
besieged strip, over the past few days.

Senior Palestinian officials describe the
 multiple attacks as a "brazen violation
 of international norms."

The UN says over 80% of Palestinian fatalities
 have been civilians, including over 250 children.

The UN Human Rights Council recently passed
 a resolution, calling for an independent probe
 into Israel’s war crimes in Gaza.

The US Congress says that it is completely
on Israel's side, and will support it "come
what may." The Congress is about to now
approve a rise in war weaponry funding to
"help" Israel's Gaza slaughter.

Iran's leader says no human being can
stay indifferent to the slaughter of the
innocent women and children of Gaza.


Massacre of Gaza's Civilians Continues

At least 100 people have been killed by Israeli
shelling since midnight, as Operation Protective
 Edge enters its 22nd day on Tuesday.

The Israeli Defense Forces bombing of Khan Yunis
 and Rafah in southern Gaza has almost completely
 erased five whole families, writes Haaretz.

Reporters present at the site of the intense shelling
 say that for now it is impossible to tell for sure how
 many people have been killed, as many are missing
 or buried under the rubble of ruined buildings.

The attacks on Gaza intensified shortly after Prime
 Minister Netanyahu announced Monday that Israel
 had to be prepared for a “prolonged” campaign and
 warned that Israeli troops will not leave Gaza until
 they destroy Hamas' tunnel network. Ahead of the
 strikes, the Israeli army advised Palestinians to
 flee their homes in areas around Gaza City.

Palestinians, including Hamas, reportedly
 offered a 24-hour truce in war-torn Gaza.
 The groups added that - at a UN request
 - they would prolong it for 72 hours.

Late on Monday, it was reported that it was
 the PLO that actually declared a unilateral
24-hour truce to push forward the Egyptian
proposal for a ceasefire and advance its

Hamas’ spokesperson in Gaza, Sami Abu Zuhri,
denounced reports that it had agreed to the
 PLO-announced truce.

“We will not agree to calm until Israel commits
 to quiet. If we get an international commitment
 regarding an Israeli agreement for calm, we will
 consider it,” the spokesperson says, as cited
 by Haaretz.


Israeli attack knocks out Gaza’s only power plant
The only power plant providing electricity for the
people in the besieged Gaza Strip is knocked out
 of commission by an Israeli attack.

“Gaza’s sole power plant stopped working due
 to Israeli shelling last night, which damaged
the steam generator & later hit the fuel tanks
 which set them on fire,” Fathi al-Sheikh Khalil,
 the deputy director of the energy authority in
 the tiny coastal enclave, says on Tuesday.

Huge fires raged near the plant on Tuesday
 morning, reports say. Fire service vehicles
 are reportedly still unable to reach the area.

The damage to the power plant worsens the
 huge damage to infrastructure inflicted during
 the 22 days of Israel’s deadly offensive in Gaza.

The Palestinian death toll from Israel’s military
 offensive against the blockaded Gaza Strip has
now risen to at least 1,130.

A Palestinian health official announced the
new figure on Tuesday morning. Over 6,000
have been injured in the Israeli onslaught.

Israel says 53 Israelis have been killed so far;
however, Palestinian fighters say they have
 killed over a hundred Israeli soldiers.

The new figures come as nearly 30 Palestinians
are killed and dozens more injured in the latest
 Israeli attacks overnight. The houses of several
 Hamas officials, including that of Hamas leader
 Ismail Haniyeh, also came under fire.

“My house is not more valuable than the houses
 of other people: destroying stones will not break
 our determination,” Haniyeh said in a statement
after the attack.

At dawn on Tuesday, plumes of smoke rose above
 the Al-Shorouq media building in central Gaza City,
 which houses the offices of the Hamas-run Al-Aqsa
 television and radio. Hours earlier, at least 2 major
 blasts hit the media building.

On Monday at least 10 people, mostly children,
lost their lives, as Israel struck Shati refugee
 camp on the edge of Gaza City. Israeli tanks
 also killed 5 people, including three children
 and a 70-year-old woman, and wounded 50 in
 Jebaliya town, according to the Red Crescent.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu says Tel Aviv
 needs “to be ready for a prolonged campaign.”

Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri reacts
 by saying, “His threats don't scare Hamas or
 the Palestinian people, and the occupation
will pay the price for the massacres against
 civilians and children.”

Israel has rejected a recent call by the United
 Nations for a ceasefire, which the Palestinian
 resistance movement of Hamas had endorsed.



As Netanyahu refused to accept UN security
Council resolutions calling for a ceasefire,
ten Israeli soldiers were killed on Monday,
fighting Palestinian resistance fighters.

 However, the heavy Israeli onslaught on the
besieged Gaza strip, continues regardless.

Al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas,
says in a statement that Palestinian resistance
 fighters killed the soldiers east of Shujaiyya.

The military wing of Hamas says its fighters
 infiltrated "behind enemy lines" and killed
 the soldiers.

The Israeli army also issues a statement after
 the incident, saying Hamas fighters infiltrated
 into Israel through a tunnel and opened fire
 on Israeli soldiers.

Elsewhere, in the city of Eshkol, at least four
 Israelis were killed and nearly a dozen others
 injured after Palestinian rockets hit the city.

The Israeli army has confirmed the casualties,
which brings the total number of Israelis killed
since the beginning of the war on Gaza to over
50, with 140 wounded.

Palestinian fighters, however, say they have
 killed over a hundred Israeli soldiers alone.

Palestinian rockets targeted several other
Israeli cities including Be’er Sheva, Ofakim,
 Haifa and Ashkelon. Resistance brigades
 also fired over 200 rockets on the Nahal
 Oz region in the Negev desert.



Egypt’s ousted President Mohamed Morsi
 admires the Palestinian "resistance" in
the 21-day Israeli war on Gaza Strip.

"A full salute to those who resist and to
 the revolutionaries," Morsi says on his
 Facebook page.

"Our compass is set on supporting Palestine
 against the usurping occupier and we are
 with any resistance against any occupier."

He also praises his supporters for "the
pursuit of their revolution."

Morsi, Egypt’s first democratically-elected
president, was toppled in 2013 in a military
 coup led by Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, Egypt’s