Archive | August 2, 2014

And Nature Blessed the Tunisian Desert with a New Lake*

And Nature Blessed the Tunisian Desert with a New Lake*

By Kim Willsher

The lake appeared in the Tunisian desert like a mirage; one minute there was nothing but scorching sand, the next a large expanse of turquoise water.

For locals, roasting in the 40C heat, the temptation to cool off in the inviting water quickly overcame any fears about the mysterious pool.

Hundreds flocked to what quickly became known as the Lac de Gafsa or Gafsa beach to splash, paddle, dive, and fling themselves from rocks into the lake, ignoring warnings that the water could be contaminated with carcinogenic chemicals, riddled with disease or possibly radioactive. Even after the water turned a murky green, they arrived in droves, undeterred.

“Some say it is a miracle, while others are calling it a curse,” Lakhdar Souid, a Tunisian journalist, told France 24 television.

The Lac de Gafsa is about 25km from the Tunisian city of Gafsa and has been irresistable to swimmers in the heat.

The Lac de Gafsa is about 25km from the Tunisian city of Gafsa and has been irresistable to swimmers in the heat.

“In the first few days, the water was crystal clear; a turquoise blue. Now it’s green and full of algae, which means it’s not being replenished.”

Mehdi Bilel was returning from a marriage in the north of the country when he spotted the lake in the desert canyon 25km from the city of Gafsa on the road from Om Larayes.

“After several long hours on the road without a break, I honestly thought I was hallucinating,” he told journalists. “I don’t know much about science and thought it was magic, something supernatural.”

Gafsa became the centre of the country’s mining industry after phosphate was discovered in the southern Tunisian region in 1886. Tunisia is now the world’s fifth largest exporter of phosphate, which is used in industry.

Shepherds discovered the lake, thought to be up to 18 meters deep and covering one hectare, three weeks ago. Local geologists suspect seismic activity may have ruptured the rock above the water table sending the liquid to the surface.

Other theories have suggested the canyon has simply collected rain water.

“News of the lake’s appearance has spread like wildfire and now hundreds of people, eager to escape a heatwave, go there to swim,” Souid wrote in the Tunisia Daily newspaper.

“This region is overflowing with large deposits of phosphate, which can leave behind radioactive residue so there is a real risk that the water is contaminated and carcinogenic. There’s no security of any kind.

“The site is certainly stunning and there are many large rocks perfect for diving, but it has become infested with green algae, meaning the water is stagnant and conducive to diseases.”

Ten days ago Hatef Ouigi, of Gafsa’s office of public safety, warned that the lake is dangerous and not fit for swimming in. He said this was a cautionary measure while scientists take samples and verify the water. “Depending on the results, we will take measures,” Ouigi said.

Since then, there has been no further official news, though experts have warned that if the lake has indeed formed because of a rupture in the water table, the cracks from which the water came could cause the water to flow the other way and drag swimmers to the bottom.

“There’s no security, no lifeguards and civil protection people only turned up in the first few days,” journalist Souid added.

Bathers have been posting photographs on the Lac de Gafsa facebook page.


Related Topics:

Pakistan gets three new islands following earthquake

U.K. Going through an Earth Shift*

Earth Shift: As Above So Below the Red Sea

The Sun’s Polar Shift has Begun

Is the Sun and Earth Synchronizing?*

Occupy World: Tunisia’s Arab Spring Bears a Progressive Constitutional Fruit 3 Years Later*

School Planned to Microchip Bracelet Students for ‘Good Behaviour’ without Parental Consent*

School Planned to Microchip Bracelet Students for ‘Good Behaviour’ without Parental Consent*

By Steve Watson

Make it look cool so every child will want to have one.

In a move that sounds like something out of a frightening dystopian fiction, a school in New Zealand has come under intense criticism from parents for attempting to introduce a scheme to tag children with microchips in order to promote good behaviour.

Fairfax Media reports that Swannanoa School in North Canterbury plans to attach chipped bracelets to students to track their behaviour. Many parents were not notified of the scheme, only finding out about it via minutes from a Parent Teacher Association meeting.

When the local media investigated the proposal, the school finally sent out notifications to parents. A letter from the principal suggested that the plan was more efficient than alternatives such as ID cards, which could be misplaced.

The school has even gone as far as measuring up the wrists of children in preparation for the plan, which it says will cost $7000 to set up.

Under the proposal, the devices locked to kids’ arms would allow teachers to use portable scanners in order to add reward points to a student’s good behaviour record, stored on a database. Students would be rewarded points when they did something teachers determined to be positive, and incentives would be enhanced with the promise of prizes for reaching a certain amount of points.

The chips would contain information including names, points tally and the school house that students belonged to. The school claims that the devices would not have a GPS tracker.

Naturally, parents are outraged at the scheme, which is otherwise literally employed in prisons and to monitor the whereabouts and activities of offenders, or those on parole.

“I don’t like the idea of my children being scanned,” said mother of two Emma Goodin, adding that she does not want her children “treated like grocery items or criminals”.

If it’s just for good behaviour, why would you invest that much money in it?” commented Liz Rutherford, another mother who has also vowed to remove her children from the school should the plan go ahead.

When notified of the proposal, a government Education Ministry spokesperson told reporters that “Individual schools decide how to encourage good behaviour in consultation with their community.”

In a poll accompanying the Fairfax media report, over 83% of respondents said they would remove their children from a school introducing such a scheme. Just 16% said they thought it was a good idea or would go along with it.

Infowars has previously reported on similar stories of schools in the US attempting to introduce such schemes. In 2013, a Texas family whose daughter was expelled for refusing to wear an RFID tracking chip fought the scheme in the courts and was eventually victorious as the school scrapped the system.

In our report covering that case, we noted how several other schools around the nation have also attempted to use various chipping and tracking methods, including biometric technology. Bracelets such as the ones touted by the New Zealand school are now routinely used in theme parks and at events such as concerts to store digital currency, making payment for items and entrance to restricted areas quicker.

However, the personalization of such technology, and the use of it to specifically monitor an individual is highly invasive and should be considered a significant threat to privacy. When there is a debate over whether even incarcerated criminals should be subjected to its use, one must ask why there are moves to employ it in schools?


Related Topics:

NWO Next Step in Making the State Warden of Your Child*

Students and Parents Rebel Against RFIDs

Harnessing the Power of Radio Frequency to Track Our ChildrenA Micro-chip to Monitor Your Health

A Courageous School Girl Challenges the Personalized Electronic Tracking System

Eye-tracking devices will read your thoughts

Occupy World: Parents Defeat Attempt to Implement Palm Scanners in School*

U.K. Fingerprinted over a Million Pupils in Schools without Parental Consent*

Biometric Identification Control: What Will You Do?

Bolivia Revokes Visa Agreement with Israel*

Bolivia Revokes Visa Agreement with Israel*

By Rizwan Khantik

Bolivia has declared Israel a “terrorist state” and revoked a visa exemption agreement with Tel Aviv in protest at the ongoing Israeli attacks on the besieged Gaza Strip.

The move “means, in other words, we are declaring (Israel) a terrorist state,” President Evo Morales said during talks with a group of educators in the city of Cochabamba on Wednesday.

Morales added that the Israeli offensive shows “that Israel is not a guarantor of the principles of respect for life and the elementary precepts of rights that govern the peaceful and harmonious coexistence of our international community.”

Signed in 1972, the visa exemption agreement has allowed Israelis to travel freely to Bolivia without a visa.

Earlier this month, the Bolivian president called on the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to prosecute Israel for “crimes against humanity.”

The move came as a fresh Israeli airstrike on a busy market near Gaza City killed at least 17 people and injured dozens of others earlier in the day.

More than 1,300 Palestinians have been killed and thousands of others injured by the Israeli regime’s offensive against the coastal sliver since July 8.

The Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas, has been launching retaliatory attacks against Israel.


Related Topics:

David Attenborough on Israel and Palestinians

From Gaza: I’m a Human Being, Not a Human Shield*

Jordanian Aid Convoy Arrives in Gaza*

World’s Leading Medical Journal Sends an Open Letter to Gaza*

Irish Shops Urged to Remove Produce from Israel*

U.K.’s Largest Supermarket Chain Tesco to Boycott West Bank Products*

US Congress: Bill to Outlaw Muslim Brotherhood*

Celebrities and Activists Remember Gaza’s Dead*

Egypt Blocking Egyptian Humanitarian Aid to Gaza*

Pentagon Rushes Ammunition to Israel*

Demonstrators Take to the Streets against the Massacres in Gaza

Israeli Barbarism: 6 Things You Can Stop Buying*

Protesting has Gone Flamenco, in Spain at Least*

Protesting has Gone Flamenco, in Spain at Least*

Well of no one is listening, what else can one do? Observe how it changes what the speaker says.

By L. Finch

The southern region of Andalusia in Spain is home to flamenco, a style of folk art known for its emotional music, powerful singers and seductive dance. Lyrics often speak of love and love lost, but also deal with pain, poverty and sorrow — topics that many Andalusians know all too well in recent years.

Spain has made painful cuts to spending as the country has struggled with a devastating economic crisis in the last several years. The number of poor and unemployed has ballooned throughout Spain, but Andalusia has been hit especially hard.

Protests are common, but one collective has made theirs uniquely Andalusian. In late June, three members of FLO6x8 interrupted the regional parliament one by one singing songs in the flamenco style that spoke out against unemployment, corruption and the crisis.

Each time, the protesters were removed from the public gallery shortly after they began to sing.

The first singer criticized the lack of jobs in Spain, which has forced many young Spaniards to leave the country in search of work elsewhere:


is how you want to see me
or that I emigrate.
for a shit job
while you all get fat off layoffs.
And you all are lackeys of the troika.


Two-thirds of Andalusians are unemployed, according to the latest data form European Union statistics agency Eurostat. Poverty in the region, where agriculture and tourism are the main industries, grew 11% between 2007 and 2012 to 24.1 percent, one of the highest in Spain.

Andalusia asked for a bailout from Madrid in September 2012, becoming the fourth region to do so. Spain was given its own rescue package of $126 billion from the so-called troika — the International Monetary Fund, the European Commission and the European Central Bank – a few months earlier to recapitalize its ailing banking sector.

FLO6x8 has staged similar protests inside banks with singing, dancing and guitar. Take a look:

The group advocates the creation of a new constitution with the participation of all Spaniards. Until that happens, they promise politicians that “we will speak out in every public space where you show your venerable faces.”


Related Topics:

Spain Protests Against Euro-Pact Austerity Deal

A Student Embraces the Spanish Youth Revolution

Spain: The ‘Arab Spring’ Moves Towards a Collective Intelligence!

NWO: Anti-Protest Laws, Following Canada, U.S. Now Spain and Egypt*

The Real Purpose of the IMF*

Where Was Mideast Peace Envoy Blair As Israel Bombed Gaza?*

Where Was Mideast Peace Envoy Blair As Israel Bombed Gaza?*

Where was Middle East peace envoy Tony Blair last week as Israel invaded Gaza and committed horrific war crimes, killing over 1000 Palestinians, 80 percent of them civilians, 200 of them children?

Not at his official residence and office in the millionaires’ row of East [al-Quds] Jerusalem, which costs £750,000 a year, and from where he directs his somewhat less than successful efforts to bring peace to the Middle East.

And what was Tony Blair doing, as Israel bombed hospitals, schools, centres for the disabled, and UN shelters to which 180,000 civilians fled — as at least 1000 homes were turned to rubble by random bombardment? What was he doing as the people in 46 percent of Gaza were warned by Israel to evacuate — without any indication of where they could go — or face being slaughtered by the world’s fifth most powerful military force?

What has been the Middle East’s Peace Envoy’s only visible contribution to finding a peaceful resolution to the carnage we have witnessed since 6 July, when Israel escalated its merciless attack on 1.8 million defenceless people, held captive by an inhumane siege, which for seven years  has left them starved of food, clean water and essential resources, including medical supplies?

The only sighting has been his appearances on television in which his one purpose seems to be to repeat endlessly that he supports “Israel’s right to defend itself”. By killing 200 children? is never the repost by his interviewers, least of all on the BBC, which, like Tony Blair, is a fully signed up contributor to Israel’s propaganda campaign justifying crimes against humanity.

So has the peace envoy been active behind the scenes, working tirelessly to bring the carnage to an end?

As far as we know, his only behind the scenes activity has been to act as messenge-boy for the scam Egyptian “ceasefire proposal,” which was actually hatched in Washington, with the terms drafted by Israel. Tony Blair’s errand was to deliver the proposal to US-backed Egyptian dictator Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, for him then to announce it as his initiative. The Middle East peace envoy, whose role is supposedly intended to mediate between warring parties in the region, didn’t consider showing the ceasefire proposal to Hamas, which only learnt of it from the media and understandably rejected it as a one-sided demand to surrender. As Israel based journalist Jonathan Cook wrote:

The corporate media swallowed the line of Israel accepting the “ceasefire proposal” and Hamas rejecting it. What Hamas did was reject a US-Israeli diktat to sign away the rights of the people of Gaza to end a siege that cuts them off from the rest of the world.

Tony Blair was the natural choice to be the US and Israeli emissary to the Egyptian dictator el-Sisi, who came to power in a military coup last year that toppled the democratically elected government of President Mohamed Morsi. The Sisi regime is estimated to have killed more than 2,500 protesters and jailed more than 20,000. But that didn’t stop Blair at the beginning of July agreeing to “advise” the Egyptian dictator in a deal which is said to promise huge “business opportunities.”

Not for the first time, Blair is blurring the lines between his public position as peace envoy and his private business dealings in the Middle East. Which is why a group of former British ambassadors and political figures joined a campaign to call for Blair to be sacked as Middle East envoy.

So where was Tony Blair last week, as the world watched in horror as Israel invaded Gaza with complete disregard for international and humanitarian law?

He was in the United Kingdom.

And what was his prime activity last week? It was planning a surprise 60th birthday party for his wife Cherie. Why she needed one to coincide with the news that Israel’s mass murder in Gaza had passed 1000 is not clear, as her 60th birthday isn’t actually due till September.

But there was the Middle East peace envoy on Friday 25 July, partying at a cost of £50,000 in his £6 million mansion, with 150 political cronies, wealthy businessmen and minor celebrities.

The next day, over 60,000 protesters brought central London to a standstill, calling for the Gaza massacre to stop. Many thousands more demonstrated in towns and cities throughout the UK. And across the world, from San Francisco to Tel Aviv, on every continent, demonstrations called for an end to the killing, the siege to be lifted and Palestine to be free.

There is an ever-growing worldwide outrage that Israel is allowed with impunity to get away with such barbarity. As the Channel 4 News journalist Jon Snow put it: “Were any other country on Earth doing what is being done in Gaza, there would be worldwide uproar.”

And the response of Tony Blair, the Middle East peace envoy: “Israel has the right to defend itself.” Time to party.


Related Topics:

Egyptian Ceasefire Initiative a U.S.- Blair Plot!*

Operation Protective Edge: The Dead Have Names*

Can Blair Mess Up Egypt Even Worse? (Hint: Yes)*

Tony Blair’s’blood for oil’ Speech*

Former Prime Minister Tony Blair Subjected to Citizen’s Arrest*

Blair, Bush and Cameron: Deluded in their Hi-jack of God*

Tony Blair Visits Caesarea, an Israeli Rothschild Estate*

Egypt Blocking Egyptian Humanitarian Aid to Gaza*

Egypt Blocking Egyptian Humanitarian Aid to Gaza*

By Patrick Kingsley

Last week a convoy carrying medical supplies to Gaza from Egypt was turned back by Egyptian soldiers over 100km from the border. The convoy’s organisers knew they risked being stopped – but that was part of the point.

“It was expected,” said Salma Said on her return home.

“They do not want Egyptians to show support for Palestinians. They want to make sure that this siege and this isolation continues.”

During this latest Gazan war, the conflict has been predominantly portrayed as one between Israel and Hamas. But a third party has exacerbated the tensions in Israel’s favour: Egypt. A traditional broker of Israeli-Palestinian relations, Egypt is usually assumed to act with Gaza’s best interests at heart – and has done its best to maintain that perception in recent weeks. It has condemned Gazan deaths, called for a ceasefire, and allowed a few critically injured Gazans to be treated in Egyptian hospitals. Since Said’s blocked convoy, Egyptian officials have also finally allowed other medics and medical supplies to cross the border.

But other Egyptian actions – both over the past year, and in recent days – have led to accusations that Egypt is indifferent to Gazan suffering – and that its interests are aligned with Israel’s. Since last July Egypt has bolstered Israel’s blockade on Gaza by destroying over 1,600 tunnels that smugglers once used to bring crucial goods (and weapons) into the territory. The end of the tunnel trade, which Egypt had tolerated for years, crippled Gaza economically, since the simultaneous closure of Egypt’s formal border at Rafah meant Gazans had no other way of importing many supplies.

Hamas’s decision to carry on fighting in recent weeks despite catastrophic civilian losses owed as much to Egypt’s refusal to lift this blockade as it does to Israel’s. Egypt wanted Hamas to accept an immediate ceasefire without preconditions. But Hamas wanted Egypt to spell out how it might ease the siege before it did so.

Egypt’s leaders are loth to help Hamas because the group is an offshoot and ally of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood – whose scion, Mohamed Morsi, was ousted from office last July. To shore up its power, Egypt’s new regime, headed by the former army chief Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, has since waged a brutal crackdown on the Brotherhood inside Egypt. The squeeze on Hamas is part of the attempt to starve the Brotherhood of any remaining support.

To this end, Egypt has banned Hamas from operating inside Egypt, accused the group of aiding Egyptian terrorists, accused it of espionage, and tried many of its members in absentia. As Egypt’s counter-revolution gathered steam, Hamas was even blamed for a jailbreak during the 2011 Egyptian uprising.

Egypt’s pliant media have provided rhetorical backing to the government’s war on the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas – and parts are doing something similar with Gaza. The country’s media are usually sympathetic to Gazans, but this time several columnists and presenters have appeared far more hostile. Some journalists have even denied any distinction between Gaza and Hamas. As Israel began its ground invasion earlier this month, Adel Naaman, a columnist for al-Watan, a private Egyptian newspaper, wrote: “I’m sorry people of Gaza: I’m not going to sympathise with you until you get rid of Hamas’s gang.”

The public’s attitudes are harder to gauge. Returning from the blocked aid convoy to Gaza, Salma Said said her colleagues’ work had revealed huge sympathy for Gazans among ordinary Egyptians.

“The television makes it seem like no one in Egypt wants to help Gaza – but we are trying to show that’s wrong,” said Said. “We’ve received aid from Egyptians everywhere, north, south, east and west.”

Three weeks into the conflict, there are signs that Egypt’s official stance may be softening too – but for political reasons rather than wholly humanitarian ones. Rival countries – Qatar and Turkey – are also angling to broker a ceasefire, and the fear that Egypt may lose its traditional mediation role may finally spark its leaders into easing their stance.


Related Topics:

DEBKA Report: Saudi, Egypt and Israel Orchestrated Palestinian Holocaust*

Egyptian TV Presenter: Israelis Control Egyptian Media*

One of Israel’s Greatest Spies

Jordanian Aid Convoy Arrives in Gaza*

Operation Protective Edge: The Dead Have Names*

Demonstrators Take to the Streets against the Massacres in Gaza

Would Jewry Exist today if it Were not Muslims*

Pentagon Rushes Ammunition to Israel*

Egypt Blocking Iran Humanitarian Aid to Palestine*

From Gaza: I’m a Human Being, Not a Human Shield*

World’s Leading Medical Journal Sends an Open Letter to Gaza*

The Real Jihad is in Palestine*

Irish Shops Urged to Remove Produce from Israel*

Deir Yassin, the Beginning of the Palestinian Holocaust. 1948*

Sacred Activism and the Lighting of the Third Fire*

A Zionist General’s Son Speaks Out!*

Intelligence Agents amidst UAE ‘Aid Convoy’ to Gaza*

Turkish Medical Aid Reaches Gaza*