Archive | February 14, 2017

The New Travel Ban You Didn’t Hear About Is Against U.S. Citizens*

The New Travel Ban You Didn’t Hear About Is Against U.S. Citizens*

By Shaun Bradley

As emotions intensify over Trump’s recent immigration ban, the State Department and IRS have quietly used it as a smokescreen to roll out a new policy that targets U.S. citizens for unpaid taxes.

The passports of these individuals can now be revoked and their citizenship status undermined at the behest of one of the government’s most corrupt agencies. By granting the Internal Revenue Service control over passports, due process has been significantly undermined. The shield of protection that U.S. citizenship used to represent has transformed into an inescapable brand of ownership. The desperate financial condition of the federal government will only worsen in the future, forcing it to further consume its own people’s wealth in order to survive.

The new program is set to be implemented over the next few months, and currently only those with ‘seriously delinquent tax debt’ are in the crosshairs. An individual must have $50,000 worth of tax debt to be subject to revocation, but that number can easily be adjusted downward in the future. Once identified by the IRS, a certification is sent to the State Department to begin the process. The taxpayer is then informed of the action taken against them, but any recourse from there is extremely limited. This policy blatantly targets citizens living outside of the country who may not have filed with the IRS while earning an income abroad.

The United States is one of only two countries in the world that entitles itself to tax citizens while they work in other countries. These regulations were bolstered by FACTA legislation, which requires all foreign financial institutions to report account information on Americans. The additional risks that come with having to deal directly with the U.S. government have led many foreign banks to deny American clients altogether.

As society progresses into the next age of authoritarianism, it’s clear that control over travel is going to play a key role in the power structure. The National ID is just one sign of the changing tide and will require federal identification instead of a state driver’s license to travel. These new cards would establish a kind of ‘domestic passport’ system that would open the door to serious abuses against law-abiding citizens. The consolidation of authority into agencies like the TSA and IRS should act as a canary in the coal mine to those worried about the suppression of their freedom of movement.

The ACLU has come out strongly against this kind of control grid being established:

“Americans have long had a visceral aversion to building a society in which the authorities could act like totalitarian sentries and demand ‘your papers please!’ And that everyday intrusiveness would be conjoined with the full power of modern computer and database technology. When a police officer or security guard scans your ID card with his pocket bar-code reader, for example, will a permanent record be created of that check, including the time and your location? How long before office buildings, doctors’ offices, gas stations, highway tolls, subways and buses incorporate the ID card into their security or payment systems for greater efficiency? The end result could be a nation where citizens’ movements inside their own country are monitored and recorded through these ‘internal passports.’”

Considering all of this, the implications of Trump’s border wall should start to appear more sinister than ever to individual freedom. In the years to come, the wall could just as easily be used to keep people in rather than out.

When a country is no longer able to say who can, and who cannot , come in & out, especially for reasons of safety &.security – big trouble!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 4, 2017

The pride that used to be associated with American citizenship created a country of opportunity for those willing to work hard, but now that pride has been replaced with a ball and chain that drags down the prosperity of those hindered by it. Tax evasion is seen by many as a crime deserving of severe punishment, but the hypocrisy of a nation like the United States claiming the moral high ground is laughable. Those who can distance themselves from the jurisdiction of bureaucrats in Washington should do so as soon as possible. America is starting to resemble the Titanic, and there aren’t enough lifeboats for the passengers. The objective now should be to avoid being pulled under the water when the $20 trillion debt bubble implodes.

Source*

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U.S. Taxpayers Funded Clinton’s Private Email Servers through ‘Former Presidents Act’*

Former Head of Morgan Stanley Indicted for Evading $45mn in Taxes*

U.S. Now Taxing Collection of Rainwater*

IRS Agent Admits Income Tax is Unconstitutional and Illegal*

Flint Tax Payers to foot Gov. Synder’s $500,000 Attorney’s Fee*

Rothschild Establishes Billionaire Tax Haven Inside America*

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1980 Interview: How the Tax Exempt Foundation has brought about the Destruction of U.S.*

James Baldwin Issues a Wake-Up Call to Black America*

James Baldwin Issues a Wake-Up Call to Black America*

By Leonard Pitts Jr.

Death has this way of making truth-tellers seem harmless.

Alive, Martin Luther King provoked a president and divided a nation with his truth. Dead, he is an image on a commemorative place mat, his words safe enough for recitation by children.

This also holds, albeit to a lesser degree, for Malcolm X and Medgar Evers. Dead, they were no longer dangerous.

“We took out all the radicality of their legacy,” says Raoul Peck.

Peck is the director of “I Am Not Your Negro,” a documentary built on 30 pages of notes James Baldwin wrote for a book he never finished, a meditation on race, America and his three murdered friends: Medgar, Malcolm, and Martin.

The film, which opened in wide release Friday, is a melange of arresting images, film clips and music framing Baldwin’s lacerating words as heard in archival footage and in readings by Samuel L. Jackson. It is nothing less than a masterpiece, fully deserving of its rave reviews and Oscar nomination and it demands to be seen more than once. Trying to absorb everything it has to say in one sitting is like trying to catch Niagara in a teacup.

But what is most stunning about “Negro” is its prescience and, more to the point, what its prescience says about what America still is. Here are the words of a man who died in 1987 and yet, those words somehow contain Trayvon Martin, the Ferguson uprising, the election of Donald Trump and all the other broken promises.

“People finally say to you,” says Baldwin through Jackson,

“in an attempt to dismiss the social reality: ‘But you’re so bitter.’ Well, I may or may not be bitter. But if I were, I would have good reasons for it, chief among them that American blindness or cowardice which allows us to pretend that life presents no reasons for being bitter.”

As he speaks, you are watching a kneeling Rodney King get kicked in the back of the head by an L.A. cop.

And you might, if you are African American, want to shout hallelujah at hearing those who blithely chastise your “anger” thus elegantly rebuked.

“There are days,” says Baldwin, “…when you wonder what your role is in this country and what your future is in it. How, precisely, are you going to reconcile yourself to your situation here and how you are going to communicate to the vast, heedless, unthinking, cruel white majority that you are here?”

And you might, if you are African-American, want to bow your head and lift a hand to the ceiling, because you have wondered, too, but did not have the words to say.

“When the Israelis pick up guns,” says Baldwin, “ or the Poles or the Irish or any white man in the world says ‘Give me liberty or give me death,’ the entire white world applauds. When a Black man says exactly the same thing, word for word, he is judged a criminal and treated like one and everything possible is done to make an example of this bad n*gger so there won’t be any more like him.”

And you might, if you are African-American, just want to pat your feet and say Amen. Even now. Even still.

“The scariest thing,” says Peck,

“is that it is so precise and dead on the point of what is happening right now. …We have been somehow in a sort of lethargy. We’ve been sleeping and we’ve been lazy. We’ve got Black History Month and we have Martin Luther King Day and we have new laws, etcetera, and we pretend as if everything is OK now. Which it’s not.

“We’ve just buried the corpse even deeper.”

If so, then “Negro” is a disinterment. More than a work of unparalleled brilliance, it is an urgent reminder that when it comes to race and America, the truth is not “safe.”

And it never was.

Source*

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Deportations Begin Under Trump’s Regime*

Deportations Begin Under Trump’s Regime*

Guadalupe Garcia de Rayos may have become the first person to be deported due to Trump’s executive order on immigration. On Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017 while completing a routine immigration check-in, Garcia de Rayos was taken into custody; she was deported to Mexico the next day.

Guadalupe had met with immigration officials yearly since 2009, when she was released after serving six months in jail (three months in jail and three more months in an Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention facility). She was initially apprehended in a workplace raid that her lawyers maintain was found to be unconstitutional.

Garcia de Rayos’ supporters quickly rallied around her arrest. On Wednesday evening Puente, a grassroots migrant justice organization based in Phoenix, organized a demonstration at the ICE facility where Garcia was being held. In attendance were her husband and her teenage children. When asked by KNXV whether she had anything to say to President Trump, daughter Jaqueline responded:

I’d ask him, ‘Why he would want to take her from me?’ She hasn’t done anything wrong and I’m not scared of him.

Later that evening seven people were arrested for attempting to physically block the ICE bus from transporting her to Nogales, Sonora.

Protesters blocking Central Ave., main thoroughfare in Phoenix. Police in helicopter saying, “Get out of the street.” pic.twitter.com/qm5BdkUGCU

— Fernanda Santos (@fernandaNYT) February 9, 2017

Protesters also blocked lightrail line. pic.twitter.com/dZ0yFHFvJi

— Fernanda Santos (@fernandaNYT) February 9, 2017

Spontaneous protests also took place across the country in response to other ICE raids in several cities the same night, including a blockade of a highway on-ramp in Los Angeles.

Son and daughter of Guadalupe Garcia stand before ICE bus to prevent her deportation. Both U.S. Citizens. pic.twitter.com/7HGJEVrqzq

— Valeria Fernandez (@valfernandez) February 9, 2017

Garcia de Rayos was deported due to a clause in the executive order, which vows to

prioritize for removal those … aliens who have been convicted of any criminal offense; have been charged with any criminal offense, where such charge has not been resolved; (or) have committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense.

This new executive order threatens to immediately deport any undocumented person living in the United States who has any criminal history, whether found guilty or not, as well as those who have engaged in behavior that might have constituted a criminal offense, should they have been charged and given a fair trial.

In addition to her detention in 2009, Garcia de Reyos was charged with felony impersonation, a charge often attached to persons attempting to live in the country without documentation. Her lawyers maintain that the raid in which Garcia de Rayos was arrested was ruled unconstitutional – a basis on which her conviction could be overturned.

Garcia de Rayos is the mother of two teenage children, Angel and Jacqueline, who were both born in the United States. Although the Obama administration was moving forward with Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA), a program in which parents of U.S.-born children could apply for a three-year renewable work visa and exemption from deportation, it’s becoming clear that this program will not come to fruition under the Trump Administration.

After being deported to Mexico, Garcia de Rayos was temporarily reunited with her children, who crossed the border to visit her.

Family members spoke to the media about what they have been going through in the aftermath of her eviction:

“It’s just the worst thing, it feels like a dream, but this is reality, and we have to face it… We’re going to support our community and my mother and we’re going to keep on fighting. – Son of Guadalupe Garcia de Rayos

DAPA is an accompanying program with the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which is fully implemented, but which many fear will be quickly overturned by the new administration.

Since the elections, grassroots organizations in Tucson and Phoenix have been working to further reinforce safety networks among undocumented communities. However, many people are increasingly apprehensive about the possibility of deportation. When asked how she and her son had been doing since the election, one anonymous undocumented Tucson woman said “We’ve been staying inside.

Source*

Related Topics:

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Nine Young Children Killed: The Full Details of the Botched U.S. Raid in Yemen*

Nine Young Children Killed: The Full Details of the Botched U.S. Raid in Yemen*

By Namir Shabibi , Nasser al Sane

Relatives of people killed in the raid gather in one of the decimated houses. (Photo: Nasser al Sane)

 

Planned for months, it was decided over dinner.

The raid on a village in rural Yemen reportedly aimed to capture or kill one of the world’s most dangerous terrorists and deliver a stinging blow to al Qaeda in the Arab Peninsula (AQAP), a militant network the U.S. had been trying to dismantle for more than a decade. The collection of small brick houses in Yemen’s dusty central region was home to civilian families as well as militants and was heavily-guarded, meaning a precise, well-practiced operation was paramount. Intense surveillance was carried out for weeks, rehearsals took place in Djibouti, and Navy SEALS awaited the go-ahead from their commander-in-chief. It came just five days after President Donald Trump took office.

But as the elite team descended under the cover of darkness, what could have been the first major victory for the new administration in its renewed mission to defeat radical Islam quickly went dreadfully wrong.

As cover was blown, enemy fire returned and contingency plans failed, tragedy unfolded on all sides.

It is already known that 8-year-old Nawar al Awlaki, the daughter of al Qaeda propagandist Anwar al Awlaki was among those who died in the attack. But following a field investigation, the Bureau can today reveal that nine children under the age of 13 were killed and five were wounded in the raid in al Bayda province on January 29.

Details emerged piecemeal last week regarding civilian and military deaths, the disputed value of the targets and deficiencies in planning – some of the information coming from military sources in unprecedented briefings against its own administration. Insiders told CNN and NBC that the ultimate target was AQAP leader Qasim al Raymi. If the soldiers didn’t find him in the village they hoped they would find clues as to his location.

But despite the growing reports of failure – and despite the death of Navy SEAL Chief Petty Officer William Owens and the destruction of a $70 million Osprey aircraft – Trump’s press secretary Sean Spicer has continued to insist that the mission was a “successful operation by all standards.”

Evidence gathered by the Bureau must surely challenge that assessment. A fierce gunfight turned into an intense aerial bombardment, and the outcome “turned out to be as bad as one can imagine it being,” said former U.S. ambassador to Yemen Stephen Seche.

Working with a journalist who visited the targeted village of al Yakla five days after the raid and talked to nine of the survivors, we have collected the names and ages of all 25 civilians killed as reported by those who live there. The Bureau also has photos of the families hit and the homes destroyed as helicopter gunship fire rained down.

AQAP say 14 “of its men” were killed in the clash, including six villagers. The youngest was 17, the oldest 80.

The villagers say 25 civilians died alongside a group of militants, including nine children under the age of 13.  They deny that any of the dead villagers were AQAP members. Of the nine young children who died, the smallest was only three months old. Eight women were killed, including one who was heavily pregnant. Seven more women and children were injured.

There is fury at the U.S. for what the villagers say was yet another example of disregard for civilian life in the pursuit of terror.

“It is true they were targeting al Qaeda but why did they have to kill children and women and elderly people?” said Zabnallah Saif al Ameri, who lost nine members of his extended family, five of whom were children.

“If such slaughter happened in their country, there would be a lot of shouting about human rights. When our children are killed, they are quiet.”

Villagers described chaos, with people shot as they attempted to flee the gun battle before helicopters opened fire.

“They killed men, children and women and destroyed houses,” said Mohsina Mabkhout al Ameri, who lost her brother, nephew and three of her nephew’s children.

“We are normal people and have nothing to do with al Qaeda or [Yemeni rebel movement] the Houthis or anyone. The men came from America, got off the planes and the planes bombed us.”

Civilian deaths can provide ‘recruitment tool’ for terrorists

This is by no means the first U.S. counter-terror operation in Yemen which has killed civilians. Each one has stoked more resentment among the population. Yemeni foreign minister, Abdul Malik al Mekhlafi, said on his official Twitter account that the deaths amounted to “extrajudicial killings.”

A campaign statement by Donald Trump suggests the new leader of the free world may view such civilian casualties as inevitable, or even necessary.

“The other thing with the terrorists is you have to take out their families, when you get these terrorists, you have to take out their families,” he said in December.

“When they say they don’t care about their lives, you have to take out their families.”

Trump’s statement led to speculation that women and children might be deliberately targeted by the U.S. But Stephen Seche, who was US ambassador to Yemen from 2007-10, told the Bureau he did not believe America had changed its attitude towards protecting civilians. However “the enormous cost in human life” from this particular raid would damage the legitimacy of American intervention in Yemen, he told the Bureau.

“It’s a horrific calculation to have to make and the outcome in this case turned out to be as bad as one can imagine it being.”

Far from delivering a blow to AQAP, the raid may have strengthened it.

“Groups like AQAP will contend [this attack] shows Trump is making good on his campaign pledge,” said Letta Tayler, Terrorism and Counterterrorism Researcher at Human Rights Watch.

“Even if Trump wasn’t serious, armed extremists are likely to jump on every photo of a Yemeni child killed in a U.S. strike as a recruitment tool.”

“The use of U.S. soldiers, high civilian casualties and disregard for local tribal and political dynamics… plays into AQAP’s narrative of defending Muslims against the West and could increase anti-U.S. sentiment and with it AQAP’s pool of recruits,” said International Crisis Group in a report released three days after the attack.

The alleged target of the raid certainly appeared to think it had helped AQAP’s cause, releasing a message on February 5 mocking the US. “The fool of the White House got slapped,” said al Raymi in an audio recording which military sources said was authentic, reported NBC.

A nightmare unfolds

As Abdallah al Ameri and his neighbour Sheikh Abdallah al Taisi prepared for bed on January 28, they could be forgiven for thinking they had suffered enough bad luck for a lifetime. Both men, subsistence farmers now too old to work their land, had already survived a U.S. drone attack which hit Abdallah’s wedding party in December 2013. They both lost their eldest sons in that attack, which killed 12 people but which the U.S. has never formally acknowledged.

Their home region of al Bayda had been battered since late 2014, as the Yemeni government led by President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi began its slow-motion collapse. In its place, a three-way battle erupted between tribes allied to the government, the Houthi rebel movement and al Qaeda militants. An international coalition led by Saudi Arabia would join the fray the following year.

Yemen’s hinterland, Yakla included, faced Houthi shelling, incursions by AQAP and bombing by US drones – all on top of severe food and fuel shortages wreaked by a Saudi-led blockade. Yemen now stands on the brink of famine.

The day leading up to the strike, rebel Houthis encamped in the nearby Qaifa mountains fired Katyusha rockets at tribal militiamen in Yakla. The militiamen were allied to the internationally-recognised government led by President Hadi. It was a familiar exchange in an ongoing battle for control of the region since the start of the rebellion.

But the ominous sign of things to come was subtler. Sadiq al Jawfi, a member of a local cross-party ceasefire committee which monitors violations at the request of the UN Security Council envoy to Yemen, told the Bureau that mobile phone coverage providing Yakla with its only line to the outside world had been cut. Yemen’s National Security Bureau (NSB), historically allied to former President Ali Abdallah Saleh and now his Houthi allies, had a history of restricting coverage prior to military operations.

It was a moonless night and the calm in Yakla was punctured only by the familiar sound of drones buzzing overhead.

In the middle of the night U.S. special forces flew from the aircraft carrier USS Makin Island in Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft and landed a few kilometres from the village. Things started to go wrong right from the start. One of the Ospreys crash-landed, injuring three of the troops.

“The operation began when the soldiers landed next to the graveyard which lies about 2km away from our town, north of Yakla”, Sheikh Abdelilah Ahmed al Dahab said.

The soldiers then proceeded on foot, flanked by military dogs, in the direction of the village. Villagers say there were about 50 soldiers.

An 11-year-old is the first hit

His son Ahmed was the first casualty. According to al Dahab the 11-year-old was woken by the commotion outside and went to see what was going on.

“When my son Ahmed saw them, he couldn’t tell that they were soldiers because it was dark,” he said.

“He asked them ‘Who are you?’ but the men shot him. He was the first killed. No one thought that marines would descend on our homes to kill us, kill our children and kill our women.”

Tribal leaders Abdelraouf al Dahab and his brother came out to confront the soldiers and were shot dead, committee member Sadiq al Jawfi said. Local sources say they were AQAP members, and press reports released in the initial aftermath of the raid suggested that Abdelraouf and Sultan were among the primary targets of the operation. 80-year-old Saif al Jawfi, who also had al Qaeda connections according to AQAP, came out to see the commotion. He too was killed.

Relatives of those who died, including the seven children of Fatim Saleh Mohson al Ameri. (Photo: Nasser al Sane)

 

SEAL Team 6 attacked the home of 65-year-old Abdallah Mabkhout al Ameri, surrounding it and opened fire indiscriminately, Abdelilah al Dahab and other witnesses claimed.

“When people heard the gunshots and missiles, local men rushed out of their homes to find out what was going on,” he said.

Three witnesses said the commandos shot at everyone who left their homes. In these lawless parts of Yemen every home has a Kalashnikov and the residents reached for their guns “to defend their homes and their honour,” Abdelilah al Dahab said.

The villagers say 38-year-old mother of seven, Fatim Saleh al Ameri was fatally shot by special operators while trying to flee with her two-year-old son Mohammed.

“We pulled him out from his mother’s lap. He was covered in her blood,” said 11-year-old Basil Ahmed Abad al­ Zouba, whose 17-year-old brother was killed.

As the firefight ensued, helicopter gunships appeared and “shot at everything”, including at homes and people fleeing, Sadiq al Jawfi and other witnesses said. Fahad Ali al Ameri woke up to the gunfire.

“I was woken up after midnight by the bombing of the helicopters. There were soldiers on the ground shooting at us. They started shooting at us with machine gun fire.”

He says a missile fired at his home, killing his three-month-old daughter as she lay asleep in her crib.

Abdallah Mabkhout al Ameri, one of the dead, had previously survived a U.S. strike on his wedding party. (Photo: Reprieve)

 

The al-Ameri family was particularly badly hit. Abdallah, 65, who had survived the attack on his wedding party three years earlier, was killed alongside his 25-year-old daughter Fatima and 38-year-old son Mohammed. Three of Mohammed’s four children also died – Aisha, 4, Khadija, 7, and Hussein, 5. A further nine members of the extended family were killed.

At some stage, al Qaeda militants who had encamped in the nearby Masharif and Sharia mountains descended to engage the U.S. commandos in a fight which would last over two hours. AQAP say 14 of its men died in total: six villagers and eight others.

The eight-year-old daughter of the late radical American preacher Anwar al Awlaqi, who was visiting her uncle Abdelilah al Dahab, was hiding in a room when it was attacked by the gunships, her uncle said.

“Some of the gunfire went through the windows and Nawar was injured in her neck,” he said.

The girl would not survive.

“We tried to save her but we couldn’t do anything for her,” said Abdelilah al Dahab.

“She was injured around 2.30am and bled until she died at around dawn prayers.”

Eight-year-old Nawar Anwar Al-Awlaqi is said to have bled to death over two hours

Eight-year-old Nawar Anwar Al-Awlaqi is said to have bled to death over two hours

Eight-year-old Nawar Anwar Al-Awlaqi is said to have bled to death over two hours.

The eight-year-old daughter of the late radical American preacher Anwar al Awlaqi, who was visiting her uncle Abdelilah al Dahab, was hiding in a room when it was attacked by the gunships, her uncle said.

“Some of the gunfire went through the windows and Nawar was injured in her neck,” he said.

The girl would not survive. “We tried to save her but we couldn’t do anything for her,” said Abdelilah al Dahab. “She was injured around 2.30am and bled until she died at around dawn prayers.”

U.S/ special operatives made an exit from the village at around the same time, say villagers, but some air attacks continued.

In the days that followed, conflicting narratives emerged. At first, the Department of Defense’s Central Command (Centcom) was bullish, describing the raid as “one in a series of aggressive moves against terrorist planners in Yemen.”

Defense Secretary James Mattis gave a statement honouring the soldier who died. Chief Petty Officer Owens, 36, “gave his full measure for our nation, and in performing his duty, he upheld the noblest standard of military service,” he said.

As details about civilian casualties emerged – most notably that of eight-year-old Nawar al Awlaqi, whose photograph was circulated – the tone was softened. It was “concluded regrettably that civilian non-combatants were likely killed in the midst of a firefight during a raid in Yemen Jan. 29,” said a statement released on February 1. “Casualties may include children.”

Two days later the Pentagon released a video showing a man building bombs which it said had been discovered in the raid. Within hours it was removed from the Pentagon’s website’s after people pointed out the same video had been published online in 2007.

 Yemeni government reassesses U.S. relationship

The raid has caused anger in the Yemeni government as well as among civilians. A senior official told Reuters on Wednesday that concerns had been expressed to the U.S. government and in future “there needs to be more coordination with Yemeni authorities before any operation and that there needs to be consideration for our sovereignty.”

The White House, however, continues to insist that the raid was “highly successful.”

“It achieved the purpose it was going to get – save the loss of life that we suffered and the injuries that occurred,” Spicer said in a press briefing on February 7. “The goal of the raid was intelligence-gathering. And that’s what we received, and that’s what we got.”

Centcom did not respond to a request for comment from the Bureau.

U.S. counterterrorism ops in Yemen

The last time US special forces launched a ground operation like this one was in November 2014. It was a rescue mission, trying to spring an American and a South African taken hostage by al Qaeda. Tragically the mission failed and the hostages were killed.

Though U.S. boots have been on the ground in Yemen off and on since 2002, drones and manned jets lead the hunt for AQAP.

More than 162 strikes have left 815 people dead, including 134 civilians (in the last three years of Obama’s presidency civilian deaths in drone attacks dropped considerably). Hundreds of al Qaeda fighters have been reported killed, including a succession of men chosen as the group’s emir.

In 2011, when the Arab Spring reached Yemen and unseated its dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh, al Qaeda took full advantage. It turned from a small terrorist group, focused on blowing up airliners over the U.S., to an insurgent group governing a chunk of southern Yemen.

With this transition to insurgency, AQAP became the only group in Yemen to actually profit from the 2011 uprising, according to the recent International Crisis Group report.

In May 2016 U.S. soldiers were deployed to an airbase in the south-western province of Lahj  alongside Yemeni troops, coordinating US air strikes and Yemeni ground forces against AQAP.

Together Yemeni soldiers and U.S. air power unseated AQAP from its stronghold but only succeeded in driving the terrorists into the mountains. It has become embedded in the ongoing civil war in Yemen, setting itself up as a Sunni bulwark against the Shia Houthi militias which have occupied the capital since 2014.

Source*

Related Topics:

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Obama Killed a 16-Year-Old American in Yemen. 8-Year-Old Sister Killed in Raid Ordered by Trump *

Britain Confirms U.K-Made Cluster Bombs Used by Saudi-led Forces in Yemen*

‘No Food, No Medicine, No Money’ in Yemeni Town Just Death by Starvation*

Plane from Turkey Transfers Daesh terrorists from Aleppo to Yemen*

WikiLeaks Releases 500 Documents Showing U.S. ‘arming and funding’ Yemeni Forces*

This is a List of Labour MP’s that voted to continue to murder children in Yemen*

The Anguish, Bloodshed and Forgotten Heroes in the Ignored War on Yemen*

How Israel Was Busted Nuking Yemen*

Trump’s Latest Executive Order Means More Criminalization of Protests*

Trump’s Latest Executive Order Means More Criminalization of Protests*

U.S. President Donald Trump holds up a statue he received as a gift while meeting with county sheriffs in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017. (Photo: Andrew Harrer/CNP/MediaPunch/IPX)

U.S. President Donald Trump holds up a statue he received as a gift while meeting with county sheriffs in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017. (Photo: Andrew Harrer/CNP/MediaPunch/IPX)

U.S. President Donald Trump holds up a statue he received as a gift while meeting with county sheriffs in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017.
(Photo: Andrew Harrer/CNP/MediaPunch/IPX)

By Kevin Gosztola

Executive orders signed by President Donald Trump set in motion an agenda for escalating the criminalization of citizens, who engage in protest. This agenda will likely have a disproportionate impact on Black Lives Matter activists, immigrant rights activists, and Native Americans engaged in protest against pipeline projects like the Dakota Access Pipeline.

The executive order aimed at “preventing violence” against police officers calls for a review of existing laws. Following the review, recommendations are to be made to Trump for legislation to protect the safety of police.

“If warranted,” the review may propose “legislation defining new crimes of violence and establishing new mandatory minimum sentences for existing crimes of violence against federal, state, tribal, and local law enforcement officers, as well as for related crimes.”

Such legislation would be particularly useful for law enforcement interested in suppressing dissent against police brutality and direct action in general.

It also would fit into a trend developing as a result of Republican lawmakers, who have introduced anti-protesting legislation in several states. This includes making it a felony punishable up to five years to march on highways and increasing penalties for individuals who “obstruct” oil and gas equipment during environmental protests.

According to Officer Down Memorial, which tracks the deaths of police each year, the average number of police killed in a given year has decreased steadily since President Ronald Reagan. It has gone from around 100 deaths per year to 60-70 deaths per year. In other words, police are safer than ever before in recent United States history.

Nonetheless, the past couple of years have seen a sustained movement to hold police accountable for killing around 1,000 or more people each year and for engaging in force that disproportionately impacts black communities. Police unions have turned to promoting “Blue Lives Matter” campaigns to undermine the work of civil rights groups, and with the election of Trump and the appointment of Jeff Sessions to Attorney General, police now have allies, who will help make America a safer space for them to commit crimes without having to face accountability.

A second executive order on “crime reduction” says it shall be the policy of the executive branch to “reduce crime in America,” as if this is some newfangled policy to fight crime that has not been tried before. It suggests the nation is suffering “high rates of violent crime” and that “illegal immigration, drug trafficking, and violent crime” must be addressed.

A task force will be established by Attorney General Jeff Sessions to “identify deficiencies in existing laws that have made them less effective in reducing crime and propose new legislation that could be enacted to improve public safety and reduce crime.”

The section suggests the Trump administration will push for new criminal statutes and attempt to deal with these issues through policies of mass incarceration.

Trump has distorted and exaggerated the murder rate in the United States. It started when he campaigned for president and claimed the murder rate was the “highest it’s been in 47 years.” He repeated the distortion again when speaking to U.S. sheriffs at the White House on February 7.

The reality is the murder rate is near a 45-year low, but the real statistic will not help Trump spread fear and convince citizens to close borders to immigrants, block refugees, deport undocumented immigrant families, and give police departments greater freedom to use force in their communities. So, Trump, Sessions, and his administration spread propaganda, which numerous establishment media outlets like CNN have debunked.

Jeffery Robinson, deputy Legal Director of the American Civil Liberties Union, reacted, “President Trump intends to build task forces to investigate and stop national trends that don’t exist. We have seen historic lows in the country’s crime rate and a downward trend in killings against police officers since the 1980s. The president not only doesn’t acknowledge these facts about our nation’s safety, he persists in ignoring the all-too-real deaths of black and brown people at the hands of law enforcement.”

Sessions declared, “”We need to end this lawlessness that threatens the public safety, pulls down the wages of working Americans.” However, the Wall Street Journal reported

“newcomers to the U.S. are less likely than the native population to commit violent crimes or be incarcerated.” [They also don’t lower or depress wages.]

A third executive order directed at enforcing federal law to combat “transnational criminal organizations” and prevent “international trafficking” once again feeds into a perception that this is somehow new. President Barack Obama, President George W. Bush, and President Bill Clinton each had policies aimed at fighting transnational crime and traffickers.

It declares the purpose of the order is to target transnational criminal organizations that “derive revenue through widespread illegal conduct, including acts of violence and abuse that exhibit a wanton disregard for human life.” It adds that they “have been known to commit brutal murders, rapes, and other barbaric acts,” and the groups are “drivers of crime, corruption, violence, and misery.”

This executive order renews America’s commitment to the futile War On Drugs by pledging to go after the “trafficking by cartels of controlled substances,” which has “triggered a resurgence in deadly drug abuse and a corresponding rise in violent crime related to drugs.”

What slight shift the U.S. government made toward treatment of drug users instead of criminalizing drug users may easily be reversed through the climate created by Trump and Sessions.

Additionally, the targeting of “transnational” crime is directly tied to the anti-immigrant and nativist politics of the administration. It reflects the idea that the vast majority of the problems within the United States are a result of foreign criminals and all the U.S. must do to solve these problems is purge the country of these individuals.

All of which serves to create a dark atmosphere, where dissent against government policies is chilled and suppressed, because the president claims if the country does not take this kind of action it will be detrimental to the safety and security of the nation. It also will potentially prolong the tradition of disinvestment in black and brown low-income communities, which fuels the kind of poverty and despair that leads to the “lawlessness” the Trump administration plans to address.

Source*

Related Topics:

Education Secretary DeVos Blocked by Protesters in First School Visit*

North Dakota Republicans Want to Protect Drivers Who Hit DAPL Protesters*

‘Shoot at Us First’: Veterans Form Literal ‘Human Shield’ to Protect Standing Rock Protesters from Cops*

Cell Service Blacked Out As Violence Against Dakota Pipeline Protesters Increases*

Police Killing Indigenous Americans at Astounding Rate*

Standing Rock Protestors Use Mirrors to Inspire Humility among Police Officers*

Utah Police Responsible for More Killings than Criminals*

Cloned Cattle Entering the E.U.*

Cloned Cattle Entering the E.U.*

CETA is putting transparency and consumer choice at risk

Research conducted by Testbiotech has shown that cows and their offspring stemming from cloned bulls are registered in a professional breeders database in the U.K. It is likely that a considerable number of animals stemming from clones have already entered the E.U. At present, the E.U. has no labelling or registration requirements for these kinds of imports, which makes it almost impossible to identify breeding material stemming from cloned bulls. The research was commissioned by the Greens/EFA Group in the E.U. Parliament.

The Testbiotech report shows that every year around 30 to 40 tons of bull sperm enter the E.U. from the US for the purpose of cattle breeding. Further imports originate from Canada. These imports might include breeding material from cloned bulls, particularly as the U.S. is known to be one of the countries actively engaged in cloning in the cattle breeding sector. The semen is frozen and traded globally. Only the breeders know if material from cloned bulls is used, and they choose not to make their breeding registers accessible to the public. Access to the U.K. data remains an exception.

The European Parliament, as well as the German Bundestag and the German government all advocate a ban on cloned animals for food production in the E.U. The reasons are mostly ethical concerns, since cloning involves a high degree of animal suffering due to interference in the gene regulation of the animals. For this reason, the E.U. Parliament is amongst those institutions demanding that systems are established to gain more transparency and to register the clones, their offspring, relevant products and breeding material. Without such measures, the animals and food derived thereof can enter the market unnoticed. As yet, there is a complete lack of transparency, and there is no information available to competent authorities, farmers, food producers or consumers.

As the research from Testbiotech shows, the upcoming free trade agreement CETA might obstruct greater levels of transparency in future. Mandatory labelling of relevant products might, according to CETA, simply be regarded an unjustified barrier to trade. Testbiotech recommends that the E.U. Parliament seeks legal certainty and clarity before a final vote on the free trade agreement is taken. Otherwise, adopting CETA might lead to the E.U. parliament being in conflict with its own resolutions, political goals and previous achievements.

“Our report shows that after all the discussions on CETA, farmers, food producers, and consumers will, in future, be left in a state of continuing uncertainty if transparency and freedom of choice cannot be ensured. Unless this crucial question is resolved, CETA remains a nightmare in the making for everyone who believes that free trade should never override the interests of consumers,” says Christoph Then for Testbiotech.

The new report from Testbiotech: www.testbiotech.org/node/1840

Source*

Related Topics:

European Parliament Demands Legal Scrutiny of CETA’s ‘Corporate Court’ System*

E.U. Council Decides to Sign CETA Trade Agreement and Celebrate with Canada*

CETA: Your Life, Their Choice

Study Finds Clear Differences between Organic and non-Organic Milk and Meat*

Investors Demand that McDonald’s Ban Antibiotics in its Meat*

Poisoned Meat Returned to Where it Comes from – the U.S!

Meat By Any Means

 

Organized Campaigns Hit At Trump’s Foreign Policy Plans

Organized Campaigns Hit At Trump’s Foreign Policy Plans

At the end of his administration Obama implemented a series of anti-Russian moves. The most obvious was the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats over unfounded allegation of Russian interference in the U.S. elections. Other moves included the launching of an Ukrainian offense against the Russian supported resistance in the east Ukraine.

These moves were designed to impede the incoming Trump administration in its announced plans towards more friendly relations with Russia. The incoming Trump administration countered Obama’s sanction move. Its designated National Security Advisor Flynn phoned up the Russian ambassador in Washington. He did not promise to immediately lift the sanctions but indirectly asked him to refrain from any harsh response:

The transcripts of the conversations don’t show Mr. Flynn made any sort of promise to lift the sanctions once Mr. Trump took office, the officials said. Rather, they show Mr. Flynn making more general comments about relations between the two countries improving under Mr. Trump, people familiar with them said.

This was arguably a sensible move in line with a smooth transition of government.

In the end the Russian government refrained from any in kind reaction to the Obama sanctions.

This was blow to the promoters of hostilities with Russia. It did not stop their meddling. The effort moved towards kicking Flynn out of his new position as NSC. A concerted media campaign was launched to insinuate an early Flynn failure and to press for his dismissal.

Bradd Jaffy @BraddJaffy
Within the last 30 mins — NYT, WashPost, WSJ and Politico each dropped pieces that have to be alarming for your future if you’re Mike Flynn
5:51 PM – 12 Feb 2017

Keep in mind that some 95% of the U.S. media was hostile to Trump during the election campaign. They all peddled the nonsense of “Russian hacks” when an insider leaked emails from the Democratic National Council. They are all willing to support any move that might hinder the Trump administration.

Thus this morning news was filled with these headlines:

All these stories are based on “inside views” from multiple “former and current officials”. All are built around the baseless allegations against Flynn of somehow colluding with the Russian government. All are likely more wishful thinking than fact.

It would be astonishing if Trump falls for this obviously well organized campaign against his administration. Should he fire Flynn or give in to such pressure his enemies will smell blood, find a new target within his administration and intensify their fire.

Indeed a second well-coordinated assault on an announced Trump policy, a change of course in Syria, is already in the making. This one aims at further maligning the Syrian government in an effort to make it impossible to argue for cooperation in the fight against the Islamic State.

  • A few days ago Amnesty International published an unfounded report about alleged executions in Syrian prisons.
  • Today Human Rights Watch claims that the Syrian government systematically used Chlorine in the fight over Aleppo. The sources are solely opposition supporters.
  • Based on similar vague “facts” the Atlantic Council [Soros], a NATO lobby with financial ties to Gulf governments, launches a huge propaganda report (large pdf) about the “war crime” of liberating Aleppo from Jihadis.

None of these “humanitarian” organization is concerned about the current devastating situation in Aleppo. For 40 days the water has been cut off by the Islamic State at the Euphrates pumping stations. There is no electricity. Fuel is sparse. Medications are difficult to find.

Their hypocrisy stinks to high heaven. These organizations all assert that the Syrian government, for example, attacked hospitals in east-Aleppo solely to hit civilians. At the same time they all applaud a much bigger assault on the Islamic State held Mosul by U.S. and Iraqi troops. There, the head of Human Rights Watch asserts, the hospitals are used by the Jihadis and thus attacks on them are justified:

Kenneth Roth @KenRoth
As battle for Mosul proceeds, ISIS is regularly occupying hospitals & medical facilities, endangering patients/staff bit.ly/2kqXuUR

The anti-Flynn campaign as well as the bad-Assad campaign are aimed at Trump policy changes. These changes move away from the course the borg implemented throughout the Obama reign.

Meanwhile the Trump administration implements regressive economic and social policies without any noticeable resistance in the media, in Congress or from so called Non-Government-Organizations:

President Trump has embarked on the most aggressive campaign against government regulation in a generation, joining with Republican lawmakers to roll back rules already on the books and limit the ability of federal regulators to impose new ones.

The borg or deep state is way more concerned with keeping up its plans of uncontested global dominance than with the welfare of the citizens within the empire.

Trump promised to put “America first”, to prioritize the inner well-being of the States over the quest for global hegemony. His voters elected him for that purpose. Should he fall for the organized campaigns against his plans predictable foreign policy disasters will dominate his presidency. He will then lose any chance for re-election.

Source*

Related Topics:

Colour Revolutions? Soros-Funded Groups Back Anti-Trump Women’s March*

Thousands Sign New White House Petition to Arrest George Soros*

Soros’s Coup Causes Hundreds of Thousands of Fake Protestors Rock Rumania*

Soros, the Puppet Master of Ukraine*

Google Emerges As Financial Sponsor Behind Tech Giants’ Anti-Trump Crusade*

British Connection to the ‘Anti-Trump fake news’*

Trump to Send ISIS Fighters to Guantanamo*

Obama Killed a 16-Year-Old American in Yemen. 8-Year-Old Sister Killed in Raid Ordered by Trump *

Trump Sends Secret FBI Task Force to Stage False Flag, Blame Vets at Standing Rock*