Archive | August 14, 2015

Lord Janner Finally Appears in Court, Accused of 22 Child Sex Crimes*

Lord Janner Finally Appears in Court, Accused of 22 Child Sex Crimes*

By Michaela Whitton

Lord Janner has finally appeared in court to face child sex abuse charges. The former Labour peer appeared for a brief preliminary hearing at Westminster magistrates’ court after his legal team lost an appeal to prevent him from having to attend. The appeal followed repeated efforts by his lawyers to avoid showing up whatsoever.

After judges warned he would face arrest if he did not appear, the full hearing took less than 12 minutes, during which Janner was accused of 15 counts of indecent assault and seven counts of a separate sexual offence. The charges were a result of claims by nine total complainants, according to a BBC report.

Janner is just one of a string of U.K. establishment figures, ministers, and institutions accused of child sexual abuse and resulting cover-ups.

He is accused of 22 child sex abuse allegations, in which he allegedly molested nine boys over three decades. His family has consistently denied claims that he used his power to abuse vulnerable boys at a children’s home, though lawyers have fought against his prosecution on the grounds that he is suffering from advanced dementia.

The core allegation was that Janner befriended the manager of a children’s care home to gain access to juveniles so he could perpetrate serious sexual offences. After a police investigation interviewed dozens of alleged victims who claimed they were abused by the now 87-year old Janner in the 1970s and 80s, the Crown Prosecution Service concluded there was enough evidence to prosecute him for 22 offences.

In April, the Crown Prosecution Service ruled Janner would not face sex charges as the severity of his dementia made him unfit to face trial.

However, an Independent Review in June forced the Director of Public Prosecutions to make an embarrassing u-turn and the controversial decision was overturned.

According to The Guardian, earlier this week lawyers for both sides attempted to hash out a solution with Janner’s legal team, claiming that insisting he attend court would have a “catastrophic impact” on his health. This was dismissed by Lady Justice Rafferty and Mr. Justice Irwin, who reiterated the strong public interest in suspects attending court.

Yes, we agree, M’lady — particularly establishment figures accused of sex crimes, regardless of  how bewildered they are.

After describing Janner’s current condition, lawyer Paul Ozin claimed on Thursday that bringing him before a court would violate human rights, specifically, prohibitions on torture, inhumane, or degrading treatment — an argument rejected by Rafferty and Irwin.

“There is no question of torture, or of inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment,” Rafferty said, claiming that even if Janner was to suffer an adverse reaction, it would be “very short-lived and, as a consequence of his condition, rapidly forgotten.”

As Jammer’s alleged victims struggle with the catastrophic consequences of abuse for the rest of their lives (minus the luxury of “rapidly” forgetting), is it just me, or is this pussyfooting around Janner in really bad taste?

“It is barbaric, inhuman and uncivilised to expose a very vulnerable person to the experience I have alluded to,” Ozin told the High Court.

“Barbaric, inhuman, uncivilised?” “Catastrophic impact?” Anyone would think these comments were alluding to crimes perpetrated on defenceless children, but no, they refer to protecting an alleged prolific paedophile.

After today’s momentary appearance, Janner was released on unconditional bail. According to the Twitter feed of Exaro News, Janner faces 16 charges of indecent assault and six counts of buggery with nine boys. The case will be heard at the Southwark crown court on Sept 1.


Related Topics:

Dementia Prevents Lord from Facing his History of Paedophilia*

U.K. Offers More Free Condoms, Lubricant for Underage Kids*

Sexual Assaults on Children Rise to 85 a Day in the U.K.*

Normalizing Paedophilia through Sex for Children*

E.U. Making Paedophilia Legal Across Europe*

Heavenly Signs: Lightning Strikes 44 US Army Personnel during Training*

Heavenly Signs: Lightning Strikes 44 US Army Personnel during Training*

The Army Rangers were immediately taken to hospital, but 31 of the students have already begun training again.

Forty Army Ranger students and four instructors were struck by lightning as they were undergoing a training exercise about how to protect themselves from lightning bolts during thunderstorms, said U.S. army officials Thursday.

Lightnings bolts struck the 44 individuals in a storm Wednesday afternoon while they were at the Eglin Air Force Base in north Florida.

They were all immediately taken to a local hospital, where 17 students and three instructors remained overnight for observation. The rest were treated and released, said the army in a statement.

“The Ranger students and instructors reacted and got everyone proper medical care quickly,” said Col. David Fivecoat, Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade commander.

“Ranger students and instructors are tough,” added Fivecoat. “31 students will return to training tonight (Thursday) and continue with increased medical monitoring as they try to earn their Ranger tab.”

At the time of the strike, the Ranger students were in day seven of a 10-day intense training cycle.

Army Rangers are part of a specialty unit of rapidly deployable troops trained for extreme terrain – such as mountain, desert and swamp – and often for special operation targets. At the time of the lighting strike, the group was in the swamp phase training for waterborne operations.


Related Topics:

Military Admits ‘Martial Law’ Training in the U.S for to Imposed around the World*

Ready for Deployment around the World: Operation Talisman Sabre

Container Ship of Weapons for Syrian Rebels Splits in Half and Sinks!

U.K. 3,000 Lightening Bolts in Two Hours!*

Heavenly Signs: Pluto Discloses

U.S. Interfering in Venezuela Again*

U.S. Interfering in Venezuela Again*

Venezuela’s foreign minister, Delcy Rodriguez, Aug 10, 2015. | Photo: EFE

Venezuela’s foreign minister, Delcy Rodriguez, insists that U.S.-Venezuela relations must be based on mutual respect.

Responding to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s latest comments on Venezuela, foreign minister Delcy Rodriguez called on him to stop interfering in Venezuela’s internal affairs, which she described as violating international law.

Rodriguez was specifically referring to Kerry’s recent comments on a major news channel, where he said that international observers should be involved in Venezuela’s upcoming National Assembly elections and that all “political prisoners” in Venezuela should be freed, so that there would be no “negative impact” on U.S.-Venezuela relations.

In response to Kerry, Rodriguez said that Venezuela is a free and independent country and added, “the times in which the U.S. dictated norms to Venezuela are over, thanks to the anti-imperialist actions of the Venezuelan people.”

Instead, relations between Venezuela and the U.S. should be based on mutual respect and international norms, the foreign minister said.

Kerry’s claims about political prisoners refers to politicians arrested not for their political views but their orchestration of a wave of violence that led to the deaths of 43 Venezuelans in 2014.

Venezuela and the U.S. currently have not had ambassadors in each other’s countries since 2010, when Venezuela refused to admit the newly appointed U.S. ambassador because of negative comments he made about Venezuela’s military during his Senate confirmation hearing.

The U.S. subsequently expelled Venezuela’s ambassador, Bernardo Alvarez.

Ever since there have been negotiations on and off between the two countries about the exchange of ambassadors.

The most recent effort was torpedoed by President Obama’s issuing of an executive order that declared Venezuela an “extraordinary and unusual threat” to U.S. national security and imposed sanctions on several Venezuelan government officials.

Since then, new negotiations have taken place on the initiative of President Maduro, according to State Department advisor Thomas Shannon.


Related Topics:

For Foiling U.S. Coups, U.S. Slap Sanctions on Venezuela*

The U.S. Coup against Venezuela has Served to Strengthen Caribbean Unity

Venezuela Bans ‘Terrorists’ Bush, and Cheney *

Belgian Analyst: U.S. Born out of Violence Needs War to Survive*

The Three World Wars of Albert Pike*

My Journey from Racism*

My Journey from Racism and how we can best end it*

By Jack Balkwill

To get a job is like that haystack needle,
‘Cause where we live, they don’t use colored people
— Stevie Wonder, “Livin’ for the City”

I was raised in a racist family, in a racist neighbourhood and a racist world, in the 1940s and ’50s. In those days everyone around me was white, almost always and almost everywhere I went in Tacoma, Washington. The man who swept our street with a push broom was white. The cop who walked the beat which included my neighbourhood was white. All of the delivery people– the milk man, the ice man, and all of the tradesmen.

One reason for this is that people of colour couldn’t get a decent job. They often found work such as assistant to a plumber– the person who dug the ditches to replace broken sewer lines, and the like. Mine was a white working class neighbourhood, and less than a mile away began the “coloured” section, as it was called. We were all in roughly the same economic class, but might as well have lived on separate planets for all the contact we made.

White people who were of modest means, such as we, were placed by zoning to be a buffer between the comfortable middle class and those of colour. Most American cities were gerrymandered that way, and remnants of it exist to this day (see New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, etc.).

The racism which surrounded me extended to Native Americans, Asians, Southern Europeans such as Italians and Greeks, anyone who spoke with a foreign accent (including British, who were called “Limeys”). Poles were Polacks, Mexicans were wetbacks.  There was a derogatory name for everyone.

In that environment of ignorance, one never has a conversation with certain other groups. I can’t remember ever having a conversation with a person of colour in my childhood, nor being exposed to any conversation about mixing with those who were different racially.

I was the only person in my neighbourhood who spoke with a German family because they were hated “Krauts,” with World War II being impactful in our lives, even for a decade following it. I was too ignorant to know that I should hate my best friend, a boy from that family called Ronnie, because he was a Kraut.

My family moved around a lot and in my 16th year I found myself in very white Rapid City, South Dakota, where I had the most shocking exposure to racism– an incident which transformed me and influenced me toward the belief system I have had for over fifty years since.

It was a bitterly cold day, with a temperature well below freezing, a strong wind, and snow so thick in the air that I couldn’t see more than a foot in front of me. It wasn’t actually snowing, the snow was being blown into the air by a wind so powerful you had to lean into it to keep from falling down. I was accordingly bracing myself, when a voice called out “Would you like to go inside for a cup of coffee?”

I could see nothing, but responded to the voice, “I have to catch the bus.”

The voice replied, “The bus is delayed and we will have to catch the next one in a little over an hour, so how about that coffee?”

I replied that I only had bus fare, and not an extra dime for coffee.

The voice said he would pay.

Then the wind let up for a few seconds and I could see his black face. Shaking with cold, I decided I would go with him and take up his offer.

We seated ourselves in a booth at the restaurant across the street, ordered the coffees and they were served. We carried on a conversation that strangers are wont to chatter, damning the weather, that sort of thing, when I noticed a woman staring at us wide eyed as if in horror.

Her husband walked up to the manager at the cash register and threatened loudly,

“If you’re going to serve niggers we’re leaving,” and the two walked out the front door.

I remember feeling embarrassed for my companion, who was an Air Force lieutenant in his sharp blue uniform. I thought it best to ignore the comment and quickly jumped back into the conversation, when another couple got up and blustered the same insult,

“If you’re gonna serve niggers, we’re leaving,” and they did.

The manager walked over to our booth and asked us to leave, saying that we were creating a disturbance.

For the first time in my life I performed an act of civil disobedience, knowing I could be arrested for it. The law was clear in those days that an owner could serve any of their choice, and I had no legal right to say it, but I said “After we finish our coffee.” The manager, who I took to be the owner, glared a look of hatred in my direction and went back to his cash register.

Two more couples walked out, snarling the same remark, leaving only the lieutenant and myself as customers. Having finished the coffee, we got up to leave, and the manager followed us out the door, shouting at me, “Don’t ever come back here.”

I was behind the lieutenant as we walked into the blizzard, and I remember the tears flowing down my cheeks, from the suddenness of the understanding I’d experienced. I’d have died of shame at age 16 if anyone had seen the teardrops, the pressure to be macho being what it was, but the snow hid it well.

I had dramatically learned that so much of what I believed about the world was wrong. I had no idea that such overt racism occurred north of Dixie. If someone had told me people could be that insensitive, I wouldn’t have believed them. It had the impact of my being hit on the head with an iron skillet. It was like the line in Amazing Grace, “blind but now I see.”

I never saw the lieutenant again, and assume he had been passing through town.

I didn’t tell my friends why I never had the daily coffee with them at the restaurant before school after that. My friends were all white in white Rapid City, and racist enough to not understand why I allowed myself to be eternally banned.

A year later I found myself in Chicago with an acquaintance who was a Black Panther. I have no idea why we got along so well, but I remember staying up all night and drinking wine with him, talking about racism in the Land of the Free. He’d been adopted and raised by a white couple who protected him from knowing about racism, and he despised them for that, because when confronted with racism in his teens he was unprepared and it hurt more deeply. The shock moved him to the extreme of leaving the only family he’d known and joining the Panthers.

A year later I was on a bus going through Mississippi with a black soldier seated next to me, engrossed in conversation, when the bus stopped for maintenance and we were advised to get a bite to eat. As I walked toward the diner the soldier walked in a different direction and I asked him why. He pointed to a sign WHITE ONLY. So I said “I will eat with you,” and walked toward the segregated lunch counter, where I was told to go back, I could not eat there, white people were not allowed. I was so upset at this experience that I got back on the bus and skipped the meal, feeling helpless to do anything about it.

I was now on the other side, opposing racism. I went on to have many friends of colour over my life-time; some very close although most are now deceased.

My closest Black friend was a very dark-skinned woman named Norma who taught me a great many things before she died. She and her husband invited me to every Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner at their house for over a dozen years, and I was the only white person invited, among about 20 or 30 guests. At one of these affairs a racist Black man I’d never seen before shouted out several times “What’s the white man doing here?” while pointing a finger at me, and nobody replied until Norma, who’d been in another room, came to see what the disturbance was, and noticing that she had a racist guest, pushed through the crowd, put her arm around me, and said defiantly, “He’s here because he’s my brother.” From my roots, I understood how racism spreads to all groups.

Norma lived in Hampton, a city of nearly half people of colour, where I live today. Hampton bills itself as the oldest continually-inhabited English-speaking city in the USA, founded in 1610 (Jamestown, down the road, is the oldest).

The first African slaves in England’s American colonies arrived at Hampton in 1619.

Although Confederate troops burned Hampton to the ground to deny it to the Yankees, Fort Monroe, at the southern tip of Hampton, welcomed freed slaves throughout the Civil War.

In the 1950’s Hampton’s leaders participated in what was called Massive Resistance, to prevent the integration of the schools. Establishment racism had always extended to the children, a particularly bitter and evil legacy.

Hampton is an appropriate place to see the transitions from the deep racism of the past to the modern era.

I thought, in the sixties, with things moving as fast as they were under Martin Luther King as our leader, that racism would be ended soon. How wrong I was to think that, even as I watched American apartheid fall during that decade.

I am, however, convinced that the solution to ending racism is found in education. Children must learn as young as possible to oppose racism until we have completely rid ourselves of it. The Black Lives Matter movement is only the latest in a long string of protests to shine a light on racism, but in the long run it is the influence of the beliefs of children that will transform us to a more just and caring society.

I am thankful for the many lessons to shine rays of enlightenment my way, but I would hope that no youngster has to be put through traumatic events such as what happened to me, and it doesn’t have to happen if children can be exposed early to facts, rather than superstition and ignorance.

I know education can do the job, because it worked in my situation, and I was steeped in racism throughout my childhood as much as any person.


Related Topics:

Giving Up on Yourself to be White

White Supremacist Finds Out He Is Part Black*

Pistorius: The Hegemonic White Male*

Dr. Frances Cress Welsing: 12 Years a Slave, Racism & Black Cowardice

The Black Stereotype: Socially Engineered in the FBI War on Tupac Shakur and Real Black Leaders*

The Black Madonnas of Europe: Between Racism and Hidden Adoration*

Discovering Black Identity*

‘We Charge Genocide’: Systematic Murder & Oppression of Blacks Continues in U.S.*

The Brothers who Funded Blair, Israeli Settlements and Islamophobia*

The Brothers who Funded Blair, Israeli Settlements and Islamophobia*

By Sarah Marusek and David Miller

Tony Blair is again in the headlines, this time after Labour leadership frontrunner Jeremy Corbyn publicly voiced the opinion of millions of British citizens: that the former prime minister should stand trial on charges of war crimes if the evidence suggests that he broke international law during the 2003 invasion and occupation of Iraq.

Blair’s conduct since leaving office has received less scrutiny, however. Our investigations show that while Blair was serving as the special Middle East peace envoy of the Quartet, representing the UN, Russia, US and EU, the American fundraising arm of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation accepted money from a family that finances illegal Israeli settlements via the earnings of a convicted felon.

While conducting research on the transatlantic funders of the occupation in Palestine, to be published by Public Investigations Reports later this year, we uncovered tax documents revealing that the California-based Milken Family Foundation donated $1 million to the Tony Blair Faith Foundation in 2013. The Milken Family Foundation’s director is Michael Milken and its president is his younger brother Lowell, who is also president of another family foundation, the Lowell Milken Family Foundation, registered at the same address.

Milken the ‘Junk Bond King’

Michael Milken, with the legal assistance of his brother Lowell, is known for having developed the market for high-yield and high-risk bonds in the 1980s, earning him both billions of dollars and the nickname of “Junk Bond King”. In 1990, he plead guilty to six felonies and agreed to pay $600 million, including $200 million in fines, to settle what The New York Times had called “the biggest fraud case in the history of the securities industry”. Milken was sentenced to 10 years in prison, but served only 22 months.

According to Mother Jones magazine, Lowell was also indicted on federal racketeering and fraud charges connected to insider-trading violations at Drexel Burnham Lambert, the now-defunct Wall Street investment bank where both brothers worked. However, in order to get Michael to accept a plea deal, the charges against Lowell were dropped.

The magazine further notes that the collapse of Drexel Burnham Lambert and a number of other savings and loan partnerships (many of them affiliated with the Milken brothers) fuelled the larger savings and loan crisis between 1986 and 1995, creating an economic recession and costing American taxpayers about $500 billion.

But despite his criminal record and legacy, Forbes magazine estimates that Michael is currently worth $2.5 billion, making him the 737th richest person in the world. Lowell’s real estate investments helped to make him worth $1 billion in 2008. Back in 1984, he even paid $975,000 in cash for a two-story beach house in Malibu with five bedrooms and four baths.

From fraud charges to illegal settler funding

In recent years, the Milken brothers have focused their attention on philanthropy, working on a wide range of causes, several linked to pro-settler and Islamophobic groups. For example, between 2009 and 2013, the Lowell Milken Family Foundation funnelled $607,000 to the Ariel settlement in the central occupied West Bank, either through the tax-exempt charity American Friends of Ariel or directly to the Ariel University Center of Samaria.

Indeed, Lowell Milken’s contributions to the illegal settlement are so important that the Friends of Ariel website has dubbed him ‘Ariel’s Celebrity’.

Also between 2009-2013, the Milken family foundations donated $555,000 to Aish HaTorah, an international Jewish Orthodox organisation that staunchly defends Israeli policies and features pro-settlement articles on its website. Ronn Torossian, a spokesperson for Aish HaTorah in New York, once told writer Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic magazine,

“I think we should kill a hundred Arabs or a thousand Arabs for every one Jew they kill,” adding that:

“If someone from a town blows himself up and kills Jews, we should wipe out the town he’s from, kill them all.”

According to the Tampa Bay Times, Aish HaTorah has close ties to the virulently anti-Muslim Clarion Fund, which is behind the notorious anti-Islam film Obsession: Clarion’s address, according to Manhattan directory assistance, is the same address as Aish HaTorah International, the group’s fundraising arm.

Funding Islamophobia

This is not the Milken family’s only link to the “Islamophobia network”. Another anti-Muslim cause funded by it is CAMERA, an organisation based in Boston that claims to monitor American media coverage of Israel, but which according to a 2015 report published by the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network in reality “is an Islamophobic watchdog organisation that bullies media outlets into producing pro-Israel coverage”.

The Milken family foundations have also given a substantial amount of money to MEMRI, founded by Yigal Carmon, a former Israeli military intelligence officer, and Meyrav Wurmser, an Israeli-born American political scientist, to provide free English language translations of Arabic, Persian, Urdu, Pashto and Turkish media reports.

The Center for American Progress has called MEMRI “the Islamophobia network’s go-to place for selective translations of Islamist rhetoric abroad”. One of its directors is Steve Emerson, a media “terrorism expert” who in January 2015 falsely told Fox News that Birmingham is a “Muslim-only city” where non-Muslims “don’t go“. The subsequent public outcry forced him to apologise.

Other recipients of the Milken brothers’ crooked fortune include: Friends of the Israel Defense Forces, the largest international donor of Israel’s occupation forces; Jewish National Fund, tasked to secure the Jewish stewardship of Palestinian lands; and Zionist Organization of America, the US branch of the World Zionist Organization, which according to The New York Times has played a key role in managing land and infrastructure in Israeli settlements.

Of course, these financial connections are not the first controversy surrounding Blair’s faith foundation. Last year, Martin Bright, a former website editor for the Tony Blair Faith Foundation, complained that “Blair continues to use a ministerial-style ‘red box’ for his urgent correspondence and was a strong presence at the charity,” leading the UK Charity Commission to examine the allegations. Bright also criticised the foundation’s decision to accept funds from an organisation linked to Saudi Arabia’s repressive regime.

Blair’s role in the illegal war in Iraq may yet be uncovered; however, the full range of his current international networks needs much fuller investigation.


Related Topics:

Islamophobes Found Themselves Surrounded in a Sea of Diversity*

The Relentless Jewish Campaign against Islam*

Apology to German Muslims from the PEGIDA Movement*

Anti-racist Masses Advance on German Islamophobes*

22 Years of Fake “Islamic Terror”*

The Official 7/7 London Bombing Story is a Lie*

From Thief to FBI Agent trained in the tenets of Islam*

How the British Empire aka New World Order Sowed Seeds of Destruction towards Islam*

Top 10 Ways Islamic Law Forbids Terrorism*

European Tolerance and Reconciliation Role for Blair*

Blair’s Role Stands as he Continues to ‘Play in the Middle East*

Blair Paid Millions to Coach Despicable Leaders how to Lie*

What can be made of this Royal Conundrum?*

Religious Schools Face Closure if they don’t Promote Homosexuality*

US Immigration Exam Replaces ‘Freedom of Religion’ With ‘Freedom of Worship’*

Pope and the One World Religion?*

Foundations Pouring Millions Into Eradicate Religious Exemptions on Gay ‘Marriage’*

Fracker Backs Down due to Protest, but Cameron will override this*

Fracker Backs Down due to Protest, but Cameron will override this*

Where the public stands strong and the Communities come together to resist the frackers, they back down.  The government wants this opposition overridden.  David Cameron says the government is going all out for shale.

Local communities will be stripped of the ability to stand in the way of fracking, claims the government.  Powers to fast-track fracking come into effect today.  Democracy died today.

The vast majority of people will do nothing to stop Cameron and Amber Rudd.  A tiny percentage of people determined to resist are ready to carry on the fight.  Their numbers are surging.  The new licences of areas available to fracking companies will be announced tonight.

One third of Britain’s land mass will be licensed within weeks, a quarter of the country will be within a few hours from now.

Local Authorities are being bypassed.  It’s coming.  All we can do is stand in front of the trucks.


Related Topics:

Lancashire Rejects Fracking Deal*

Fracking Company Must Pay $3 Million To Sickened Family*

Fracking Companies Free to Use 70 Million Gallons Of Clean Water in the Midst of U.S. Record Drought*