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Showing posts from April 4, 2013

The Acute Jihadist Threat in Europe

By Scott Stewart, Vice President of Analysis, and Sidney Brown

On March 26, the Belgian federal police's counterterrorism force, or Special Units, conducted a felony car stop on Hakim Benladghem, a 39-year-old French citizen of Algerian extraction. When Benladghem reacted aggressively, he was shot and killed by the police attempting to arrest him. The Special Units chose to take Benladghem down in a car stop rather than arrest him at his home because it had intelligence indicating that he was heavily armed. The authorities also knew from their French counterparts that Benladghem had been trained as a paratrooper in the French Foreign Legion.

Additional intelligence showed that Benladghem had traveled extensively and that, through his travels and email and cellphone communications, he appeared to be connected to the international jihadist movement. Rather than risk a confrontation at Benladghem's apartment, where he had access to an arsenal of weapons as well as a ballistic vest …

SKorea: North Korea moved missile to east coast

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea's defense minister says North Korea has moved a missile with "considerable range" to its east coast, but says it is not capable of hitting the United States.

Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin on Thursday dismissed reports in Japanese and South Korean media that the missile could be a KN-08, which is believed to be a long-range missile that if operable could hit the United States.

Kim told lawmakers at a hearing that the missile's range is considerable but not far enough to hit the U.S. mainland. He said he did not know the reasons behind the missile movement, saying it "could be for testing or drills."

Experts say North Korea has not demonstrated that it has missiles capable of long range or accuracy. Some suspect that long-range missiles unveiled by Pyongyang at a parade last year were actually mockups.

NKorea clears its military to attack US with nukes

PAJU, South Korea (AP) — North Korea warned Thursday that its military has been cleared to attack the U.S. using "smaller, lighter and diversified" nuclear weapons, while the U.S. said it will strengthen regional protection by deploying a missile defense system to Guam.

Despite the intense rhetoric, analysts do not expect a nuclear attack by North Korea, which knows the move could trigger a destructive, suicidal war. Experts believe Pyongyang does not yet have the ability to launch nuclear-tipped missiles, but its other nuclear capabilities aren't fully known.

The strident warning from Pyongyang is the latest in a series of escalating threats from North Korea, which has railed against joint U.S. and South Korean military exercises taking place in South Korea and has expressed anger over tightened sanctions for its February nuclear test.

For a second day Thursday, North Korean border authorities denied entry to South Koreans who manage jointly run factories in the North Kore…

Taliban attack Afghan courthouse, leaving 53 dead

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Insurgents wearing Afghan army uniforms launched a suicide attack and stormed a courthouse Wednesday in a failed bid to free Taliban inmates, killing at least 44 people, half of them shot in the basement. Nine attackers were killed.

The attack — one of the deadliest in the more than 11-year-old war — began about 8:30 a.m. when nine men wearing suicide vests drove into the capital of Farah province in western Afghanistan, evading checkpoints by using army vehicles, according to the provincial police chief. The standoff ended some eight hours later when the last gunman was killed.

Insurgents have stepped up assaults targeting the Farah provincial government in recent months as they vie for control of an area bordering Iran to the west and Helmand province to the east. Farah has become increasingly volatile as the site of a growing drug trade after military offensives in neighboring areas.

"The Taliban seem to be exploiting the opium harvest and the unpopu…

US Protection Racket Root of Korea Conflict

By Finian Cunningham

April 03, 2013 "Information Clearing House" -"PTV" - The best way to understand the seemingly reckless, recurring threat of nuclear war on the Korean Peninsula is this: the East Asian region is being run like a Mafia protection racket. And the criminal Mafia is the US.

The conflict emanates from Washington and is perpetuated by Washington. Why? To justify what would otherwise be seen as simply outrageous US militarism in the Asia Pacific hemisphere, and in particular a criminally aggressive agenda towards the main geopolitical targets of Washington - China and Russia.

Korea’s conflict is not primarily about North and South “enemy states”. It is, as it has been for the past 68 years since the end of World War II, about Washington using military force to criminally assert its hegemony on the global stage.


But you wouldn’t know this from a casual reading of the Western news media. No, we are told over and over again that the US is “protecting” Sout…