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Showing posts from August, 2014

Dramatic footage: Insider video shows Ukraine helicopters firing at own troops

The Covert Origins of ISIS

These 3-D Printed Skeleton Keys Can Pick High-Security Locks in Seconds

One of the hairier unintended consequences of cheap 3-D printing is that any troublemaker can duplicate a key without setting foot in a hardware store. But clever lockpickers like Jos Weyers and Christian Holler already are taking that DIY key-making trick a step further: They can 3-D print a slice of plastic or metal that opens even high-security locks in seconds, without even seeing the original key.

Weyers and Holler’s trick is to 3-D print a “bump” key, which resembles a normal key but can open millions of locks with a carefully practiced rap on its head with a hammer. Using software they created called Photobump, the two engineers say it’s now possible to easily bump open a wide range of locks using keys based on photographs of the locks’ keyholes. And even without a high-quality 3-D printer, those specialized bump keys can be mail-ordered from 3-D printing services like Shapeways or i.Materialise that have no restrictions on printing keys.

As a result, all anyone needs to open man…

UAE to Establish Rehabilitation Centers for Terror Convicts

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) will establish centers to help “rehabilitate” persons “lured” towards international terrorist organizations, Al Khaleej Times reported.

Mandated by Article 68 of the recently enacted anti-terror law, these centers will employ social workers, preachers and psychiatrists to help counsel and rehabilitate those “misled” into joining international terrorist groups.

“Convicts of terror cases will be sent to these centers after or while serving their jail sentences,” Sultan Juma al-Shamsi, Rapporteur of the Legislative and Legal Committee at the Federal National Council, told Al Khaleej Times.

“Precautionary measures” will be taken against those in the centers who will have been admitted based on “final judicial judgments,” he said.

The rehabilitation centers, which will be set up depending on the need of each of the UAE’s seven emirates, aim to protect “homeland’s citizens, restore them and help them get rid of any poisonous views and malicious thoughts,” al-Sham…

"Russian Invasion" Of Ukraine, Turns Out to Have Been a Translation Error

After all major news-entities repeated the "invasion" claim and the public damage is done they simply take it back.

By Moon Of Alabama

The authors of this NYT piece, Ukraine Reports Russian Invasion on a New Front, are not really convincing when presenting these reports by the Ukrainian government as truthful:


The latest incursion, which Ukraine’s military said included five armored personnel carriers, was at least the third movement of troops and weapons from Russia across the southeast part of the border this week, further blunting the momentum Ukrainian forces have made in weakening the insurgents in their redoubts of Donetsk and Luhansk farther north. Evidence of a possible turn was seen in the panicky retreat of Ukrainian soldiers on Tuesday from a force they said had come over the Russian border.
...
Andriy Lysenko, a spokesman for the Ukrainian military in Kiev, said the Russian armored column entered the town of Amvrosiyivka, south of Donetsk, expanding what Western and …

Ukrainian Forces Surrounded by Militia in the Country's South-East

Russia’s Defense Ministry ridicules NATO’s photo-proof of invasion in Ukraine

Download video (12.52 MB)
RT

It makes no sense to comment in detail on the satellite imagery released by NATO as “proof” of Russia’s military involvement in Ukraine, Defense Ministry’s spokesman said, pointing out that even high NATO officials were hesitant to put their names on it.

Referring to NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Supreme Allied Commander Europe Philip Breedlove, and NATO Spokesperson Oana Lungescu, Russia’s Defense Ministry spokesman Major-General Igor Konashenkov ridiculed the so-called NATO proof.

“You know, it has become ridiculous… If earlier, someone would at least put their names on those images, be it Breedlove, Rasmussen, or even Lungescu, now, they are hesitant,”Konashenkov said as cited by RIA Novosti. “It makes no sense to seriously comment on this.”

The General also criticized western media outlets for accepting such images and anti-Russian stance at face value.

“The phrase ‘NATO published satellite shots of Russian troops' presence in Ukraine’ h…

Putin calls on Ukraine militia to let blocked Kiev troops cross into Russia

Russia's President Vladimir Putin (AFP Photo / Mikhail Klementyev)


President Putin has called on the self-defense militias in Ukraine to provide Kiev's military units blocked in the east of the country with a safe humanitarian corridor to cross into Russia.

“It is clear the militia has achieved a major success in intercepting Kiev’s military operation, which represents a grave danger to the population of Donbass and which has already led to the loss of many lives among peaceful residents,” the Russian leader said in a statement.

As a result of militias’ counter-offense, large numbers of Ukrainian troops – many of whom were taking part in Kiev’s so-called anti-terrorist operation “against their will”and “just following orders” – have been surrounded, the President added.

“I call on the militia groups to open a humanitarian corridor for Ukrainian service members who have been surrounded, so as to avoid any needless loss of life, giving them the opportunity to leave the combat area …

NATO Bombing of Libya Led to Rise of Militias Now Fighting for Oil-Rich Land

Video transcription

Libya is facing its worst violence since the U.S.-backed ouster of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. To talk more about Libya, we are joined by Vijay Prashad, professor of international studies at Trinity College. He is the author of several books, including Arab Spring, Libyan Winter.



AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman. Islamist militants in Libya say they’ve solidified control of the capital Tripoli after taking over the main airport and ousting rival militias. Libya is facing its worst violence since the U.S.-backed ouster of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.



To talk more about Libya, we’re joined by Vijay Prashad in part two of our interview. Professor of international studies at Trinity College, he’s the author of a number of books, including Arab Spring, Libyan Winter and his most recent, The Poorer Nations: A Possible History of the Global South.



Welcome to Democracy Now!, Vijay. Talk about what’s happening in Libya to…

'Executions, amputations and lashings': ISIS commits war crimes in Syria, UN says

Militant Islamist fighters wave flags as they take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria's northern Raqqa province June 30, 2014. (Reuters)



Both the Islamic State militants and the Syrian government have committed crimes against humanity during the civil war in Syria, a report by a special UN panel says.

The report, conducted by the Independent International Commission of Inquiry, accuses the Islamic State militants of “widespread and systematic attacks on the civilian population” in Syria.

"In areas of Syria under ISIS control, particularly in the north and northeast of the country, Fridays are regularly marked by executions, amputations and lashings in public squares," the four-member commission said in a statement. “Bodies of those killed are placed on display for several days, terrorizing the local population. Women have been lashed for not abiding by ISIS’s dress code. In Ar-Raqqah, children as young as 10 are being recruited and trained at ISIS camps. …

Over 60 Ukrainian troops cross into Russia seeking refuge

ARCHIVE PHOTO: Ukrainian soldiers in a tent camp in Rostov Region on 4 August, 2014. (RIA Novosti / Julia Nasulina)


A group of 62 Ukrainian troops have crossed into Russia’s Rostov Region seeking shelter to save their lives amid an intensified counteroffensive recently launched by anti-Kiev militia in southeastern Ukraine.

“Today, 62 servicemen of the Ukrainian Armed Forces turned to Russian border guards asking to let them into the Russian territory near Russia’s settlement of Shramko, Matveyevo-Kurgansky district, with the aim to save their lives,” the spokesman for the FSB's border guard office in the Rostov Region, Nikolai Sinitsyn, told Itar-Tass news agency on Wednesday.

They were allowed to cross and provided with a transit corridor on the principles of humanism, but only after they left their weapons on the Ukrainian side of the border, Sinitsyn added.

This case became the latest in a series of similar incidents where a total of over 500 Ukrainian troops crossed into Russia …

Three civilians burnt alive in car as Ukrainian army shells center of Donetsk

Image by @PaulaSlier_RT



Kiev forces have shelled residential areas in the center of the rebel-held town of Donetsk, killing at least three people and damaging several apartment blocks, a kindergarten and a cultural center.

On Wednesday, Kalininsky District in the center of the city came under artillery fire from the government forces.

RT’s Paula Slier arrived on the scene less than half an hour after the shelling when the local residents were “still in shock”.

One of the missiles directly hit a passenger car on Shevchenko Boulevard, turning the vehicle into a torch.

“There’s a car where three people have died and the bodies are badly burned inside,” Slier said.

 Another missile hit the roof of the Youth Culture Center as several fire brigades were working to put out the fire caused by the explosion, she added.

According to the City Council, a kindergarten and two apartment blocks were also shelled in the area.

“We’re hearing from the militia that there were around six, seven hits at the sa…

The killer on the (Saudi) king's highway

By Pepe Escobar


There's danger on the edge of town
Ride the king's highway, baby
Weird scenes inside the gold mine
Ride the highway west, baby
The Doors, The End

The killer awoke before dawn. He put his American desert boots on. He took a knife from the ancient gallery. And he walked on down the hall - bathed in desert sunlight.

The killer spoke with a British accent (London's East End?) Father (Saud), I want to kill you. Mother (Langley?) I want to... yeeeaaahh, c'mon!

Then the sartorially composed Man in Black beheaded American photojournalist James Foley.

This is not the end, beautiful friend. It's just a new beginning in the never-ending Global War on Terror. Now starring Papa Saud's brand new bag - The Caliph and his goons. This is the way Shock and Awe morphs into "Assad must go" morphs into Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, morphs into The Caliph's Black Britannia goon responding to "humanitarian" bombing. I'm my own baby now. Wat…

Police lobbies pressure Congress to keep their military equipment

Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images / AFP


As lawmakers in Washington, DC, consider ways to stem the flow of military equipment to local law enforcement agencies, police lobbies and organizations are firing back at the possibility.

In fact, the National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA) – which lobbies for 1,600 different SWAT teams in the United States – has already sent emails to all congressional staffers urging them to keep in place the Pentagon program responsible for sending armored vehicles, body armor, and more to police departments around the country.

“The police have to be one step ahead of the criminal element, have to be prepared for the worst-case scenario. You don’t want a community to be taken over by one or many criminals,” NTOA Executive Director Mark Lomax said to the Daily Beast. “We’re definitely for equipping our law enforcement officials out there properly, with proper training and proper policies.”

The move comes as protests against police in Ferguson, Missouri, cont…

Dozens of police departments suspended for losing US military-grade weaponry

Reuters / Lucy Nicholson


Close to 200 state and local police departments in the United States have been suspended for losing military-level equipment transferred to them by the Pentagon, a new investigation found.

According to the media outlet Fusion, its independent investigation into the Pentagon’s “1033 program,” which equips state and local police departments across the US with excess military equipment, turned up an alarming trend: Not only did many law enforcement agencies fail to comply with the program’s guidelines, they routinely lost dangerous weaponry.

Already, the investigation has found that police departments in Arizona, California, Mississippi, Missouri, Georgia, and others have lost or cannot account for various types of weapons. This list includes M14 and M16 assault rifles, .45-caliber pistols, shotguns, and even vehicles.

So far, 184 state and local departments have reportedly been suspended in a program that involves the participation of more than 8,000 agencies. Sin…

Two NATO warships heading to Black Sea – report

The guided-missile destroyer USS Ross (AFP Photo / US Navy)



A US Navy destroyer and a French frigate are expected to enter the waters of the Black Sea next week, a diplomatic and military source said.

“Two NATO warships at once will arrive in the Black Sea on September 3. They are US Navy’s destroyer USS Ross and frigate, Commandant Birot, of the naval forces of France,” the unnamed source told RIA-Novosti news agency.

There’s currently one NATO ship present in the Black Sea, with French surveillance ship, Dupuy de Lome, expected to remain in the area until September 5.

USS Vella Gulf, which was patrolling the black Sea since August 7, recently left for its port of commission.

The maintenance of the operational rotational presence of NATO ships does not promote stability in the Black Sea region in any way, the source noted.

According to the Montreux Convention of 1936, warships of non-Black Sea states can stay in the Black Sea for no more than 21 days.

But, earlier this year, the c…

The Surveillance Engine: How the NSA Built Its Own Secret Google

By Ryan Gallagher

"The Intercept" - The National Security Agency is secretly providing data to nearly two dozen U.S. government agencies with a “Google-like” search engine built to share more than 850 billion records about phone calls, emails, cellphone locations, and internet chats, according to classified documents obtained by The Intercept.

The documents provide the first definitive evidence that the NSA has for years made massive amounts of surveillance data directly accessible to domestic law enforcement agencies. Planning documents for ICREACH, as the search engine is called, cite the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Drug Enforcement Administration as key participants.



ICREACH contains information on the private communications of foreigners and, it appears, millions of records on American citizens who have not been accused of any wrongdoing. Details about its existence are contained in the archive of materials provided to The Intercept by NSA whistleblower Edw…