Category Archives: Foreign

EU to Spain: You Can’t Use Force To Defend Border

It is pretty normal and natural that any society can reserve the right to apprehend those who are violating their laws or borders, just as one would expect the Police to use force if someone was beginning to resist their arrest, even if such a crime would not normally seemingly merit violent of action.

It is simply an issue of not allowing anyone to break the law without consequence.

But not the case to the PC EU:

EU Interior Commissioner Cecilia Malmström has warned Spain that it cannot use force to prevent immigrants from crossing the border into its North African enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla. The commissioner said that she would not hesitate to take action if she saw clear signs of European laws being broken, reports the Público online new site.

Malmström’s comments on Monday came days after a controversy flared up over a video in which a sub-Saharan migrant is shown being beaten by Civil Guard officers after he climbed the fence separating Morocco from Melilla.

“Border vigilance measures should be proportional and force can only be used when it is necessary and required in order for agents to continue to carry out their duties, to protect their own safety and their lives. Force must not be used as a deterrent against the unauthorised crossing of the border,” the Swedish commissioner said in answer to a question asked in the European Parliament by a Basque Country MEP representing the Bildu party, Josu Juaristi.

The Local

Basically, a hilarious standard is being created because it gives the Eurocommunists an upset stomach to think that force might be used in the process of arresting a flagrant violator of the standing laws.

Now, perhaps such a statement from a fringe party during a season where Europe faced no immigration issues would be somehow respectable, because, after all, there is no pressing need to curb illegal entry, but even still…

It is illegal to enter the country without permission; it is likewise illegal to use force as an officer to enforce this crime (?).

We are trapped in a world of absurdity because politicians increasingly ratchet up their sense of humanity until ‘force’ itself, when in the upholding of the law, is no longer ‘legal.’

But many of these European states have brought this upon themselves when they have willfully bent their necks to a central authority that is hellbent on driving Europe into the ground.

Why Hong Kong, Not Mexico or Xinjiang?

After the fiasco concerning the 28 burnt bodies found in Mexico, and the pretty certain government collusion in the event, it has certainly been asked by some people why has this not been in the news as much as the events in Hong Kong?

For that matter, why isn’t the gross & totalitarian crackdown on the Uyghurs more in the news these days? It has been a far larger crackdown with literal stripping of basic liberties of the Uyghur people, and there is even an enforced media blackout in Xinjiang. In fact, just last week with no deaths in the Hong Kong protests, there were 50 “rioters” put to death by the Chinese government there. Considering these events were both dealt with largely by the same Beijing government, raising the question is quite pertinent.

The answer that we all know to expect is that these gross incidences in Xinjiang & Mexico are expected. For similar reasons, if only 200 people were to have died of Ebola, we would likewise not consider this a leading news story either.  There is some element of truth in it…

Uyghur peoples facing off with the Chinese govt.

But what should accent this answer is the fact that the Western media sources felt that they had something to gain and to exploit within the Hong Kong story that they could not use towards any end in the Mexican or Xinjiang stories. The news is never just about reporting fact, but it is also about bringing forth a perspective — even if the perspective is incredibly subtle, or that the perspective is so assumed by the people it is not thought of as bias.

When it comes to big media, though, the propagandizing efforts are more conscious.

For instance, the gay agenda has been being advanced since the 1990s. The 9th episode in the 1st season of ER in 1994 dealt with the issue, and it was also close to this time in 1997 that Ellen “came out,” and not much later did Rosie O’Donnell come out (2002). It has been an increasing theme ever since this era to campaign for this — perhaps some evidence is the fact that neither Degeneres or O’Donnell are particularly talented or funny, but have been being advanced and thrust into the spotlight even when they make routinely controversial statements — merely refer to the number of 9/11 gaffs that O’Donnell makes, buying into every conspiracy there is…

… Needless to say, there is a concentrated effort by media to manipulate people towards the desired ends of the ruling elites. I am not sure if we can necessarily blame them for this because it is perhaps human nature itself which leads us towards trying to exercise our power and influence when we believe that it will have a positive influence on others.

The real question would be here what does the Western media believe that they can gain through the Hong Kong protests, and there are perhaps several potential answers.

(1) General Democracy Shilling. Big business loves democracy because it is weak, ineffectual government that lends itself towards collusion. The mantra of property rights exists so that the Corporations can justify all manner of economic exploitative investment in the foreign state, and moreover, the nature of democracy allows big business to become the most influential in politics.

Democracy is good for big business, so big business makes good for democracy. But let’s also not be too confused here, and as we will cover in point 4 again, there is not any real desire for actualized democracy or a democracy that places its own value in itself over that of their business interests; for this reason, while democracy is advocated in a ‘soft sense,’ it is also something that they will choose the leaders for it.

Why do you think most Presidents have been hopelessly un-dynamic and ineffectual? Because this is how we choose our candidates.

(2) Hong Kong is a Distraction from the instances occurring in Xinjiang, certainly, and perhaps even the Chinese elites celebrated the spotlight cast on Hong Kong. Much better is a story about protests pittering out than 50 dead in Xinjiang “riots” (read: protests).

Not to mention if we knew the extent of the horrors being perpetrated on Uyghurs that recollect the uncompromising totalitarianism and repressive nature of the Chinese government we would face mounting pressure to place restrictions on trade with China, which is veritably the last thing that the elites want: they want their money and limitless trade with a government even if they are totalitarian and cruel.

(3) Documenting protest failures is meaningful. It reminds the people that, whatever they do, ultimately the efforts end in nothing. By documenting the failures they get to reinforce a continuously growing body of evidence of failure.

(4) Identifying ineffectual idiots to play continuous roles as useful their useful role. Characters that are radical and isolate elements within their own movements are great to thrust to the forefront because they continue to splinter the resistance. Not only that, but when we choose the people to put in the spotlight we have a reliable, ineffectual idiot that we can go back to interview in the future.

When we insure that the opposition is lead by the idiots that the media chose to lead them, we will eternally see ineffectual resistance.

If you want to know some of the most stupid Hong Kong protesters, look no further than the media darlings. Truly intellectual leadership that sees things far beyond the Hong Kong protests as a goal would never end up on the media because these would be the sort of people that’d truly pose threats to the people who would want to control them (which is the media).

I realize that to some degree some of this sounds even conspiratorial, as if the media has formed a cabal to manipulate the people. Perhaps it was not always that way, and perhaps not all media directly has this goal in mind, but the broader strategies of major media conglomerates that dominate the Western media, I would contend, advance this agenda.

And this is why mainstream Left, and even extreme Left fringe, and many right wing ideological groups as well are the tools of the media, and they advocate their views with the full endorsement and guiding hand of big brother. Because the Republicans & the Democrats are both engaged in a deceptive game.

This will continue to be a bit of a theme for the blog and I will try to cover more of the issues that are wilfully ignored.

Because it is in these stories that we find the most condemning evidence against the system as it stands.

ISIS/ISIL/The Islamic State & “Caliph” Abu-Bakr al-Baghdadi

By now many are talking about this transition from being “ISIS/ISIL” and becoming simply the Islamic State. I certainly found the whole thing rather interesting.

The ISIS/ISIL enclave had become incredibly rich through their exploits and captured loads of great military supplies of US origin — including helicopters. They even joked that they expect the USA to service them and honor the warranty. They also seized an esitmated $400 million in currency (source: NY TImes). Certainly, these are very serious characters.

That does not mean that I think this is the erection of a permanent and recognizable state. This honestly depends on the will of the Iranians & the Syrians at this point, and the diplomatic skill of the new IS rulers. I also wonder if the Turkish will involve themselves, and in what capacity the Israelis & the US will act. Obama the cowardly lion brings little to the table though I wouldnt’ be surprised if he takes some sort of misguided, probably illogical action.

What is most interesting about this series of developments is the identity of this new “Caliph” which can shed some light on the issue.

His new, official name and identity, is as follows (and is as released by IS itself) and likewise explains their motive in dropping the geographic specifications of their title:

a khalīfah for the Muslims, and the pledge of allegiance to the shaykh (sheikh), the mujāhid, the scholar who practices what he preaches, the worshipper, the leader, the warrior, the reviver, descendent from the family of the Prophet, the slave of Allah, Ibrāhīm Ibn ‘Awwād Ibn Ibrāhīm Ibn ‘Alī Ibn Muhammad al-Badrī al-Hāshimī al-Husaynī al-Qurashī by lineage, as-Sāmurrā’ī by birth and upbringing, al-Baghdādī by residence and scholarship. And he has accepted the bay’ah (pledge of allegiance). Thus, he is the imam and khalīfah for the Muslims everywhere. Accordingly, the “Iraq and Shām” in the name of the Islamic State is henceforth removed from all official deliberations and communications, and the official name is the Islamic State from the date of this declaration.

Longwar

He is being identified in popular media and elsewhere simply as Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, which wikipedia notes as his nom de guerre.

One interesting aspect of his origin is that he was a Ph.D. student of Islamic studies at the University of Baghdad and that he apparently can claim lineage from the Prophet. I am guessing that both of these are correct — we may disagree with the IS and their cruel actions, but we can certainly consider that somewhere among that massive organization there may surely be a descendent of the Prophet. They even say that Prince George is a descendant of the Prophet (the Local, France). There is no shortage of people with this distinction.

I found another interesting tidbit that shows the inaccuracy and lameness of popular media coverage of the whole background of events concerning how ISI (Islamic State in Iraq) essentially took power over Jabhat al-Nusra:

When the formation of ISIS was announced in April 2013, al-Baghdadi stated that the Syrian Civil War jihadist faction,Jabhat al-Nusra, had been an extension of the ISI in Syria, and was now to be merged with ISIS.[8][20] The leader of Jabhat al-Nusra, Abu Mohammad al-Jawlani, disputed this merging of the two groups and appealed to al-Qaeda emirAyman al-Zawahiri, who issued a statement that ISIS should be abolished and that al-Baghdadi should confine his group’s activities to Iraq.[21] Al-Baghdadi, however, dismissed al-Zawahiri’s ruling and took control of a reported 80% of Jabhat al-Nusra’s foreign fighters.[22] In January 2014, ISIS expelled Jabhat al-Nusra from the Syrian city of Raqqa, and in the same month clashes between the two in Syria’s Deir ez-Zor Governorate killed hundreds of fighters and displaced tens of thousands of civilians.[23] In February 2014, al-Qaeda disavowed any relations with ISIS.[4]

Wikipedia

Those dumb asses everywhere from NPR to the Guardian touted this title of them being “Too extreme for al-Qaeda!”  (look at all these articles via google search) but there is little to really verify such a fact (hell, the Guardian article points out that they were told to not raise any hands against religious / tribal / clan groups that did not want to fight on their behalf).

Really, we are just dealing with a scenario where there was in-fighting within al-Qaeda and clearly they wanted to have their own, centralized body that was independent of the al-Qaeda network. It was a powerplay by ISI & al-Baghdadi, and it appears that it has truly paid off over there.

I am very fascinated to see how things are going to unfold and to see what this new “Caliph” is going to declare and do. This is a very fascinating point for Middle East history, and I am excited to say that I can write about a portion of it.

Now let’s just see where this is all heading and how the rest of the world reacts.

Keep your eyes peeled and dig for the truth — this is a complex scenario, so do not depend on mainstream media alone concocting some strange story. There is a lot of moving pieces here that have large political ramifications for the Middle East, and if you do not find a good thread to follow you will run the risk of getting duped or being ill informed.

I also recommend following some famous twitter handles that the Islamic State is using; many of them appear and disappear but a few of them for you are:

@troublejee

@islam4allXs

@AbuBakrAl_Janab

@abuomarassayf

@MuawiyaIASufian

These are changing all the time and I am unsure which are directly linked, but it appears @Islam4allXs is perhaps the best one for English source on it that I have seen so far, and they are incredibly active.

Enjoy.

Obama Admin Playing Stupid on Iraq In Spite of Evidence

First off, I find it hilarious that the Obama administration would even attempt to feign ignorance on this topic because of the fact that one would imagine that keeping track of intelligence and threats towards the nascent little republic we set up & were working with should be top priority… Much like it would have been getting Maliki to play nice with others, something that the administration continued to bemoan later as his shortcoming in spite of little to no news or actions from Obama previously concerned with fixing such a situation.

Evidence has come out that has shown that the Obama administration had known about the growing threat of ISIL months before they reared their ugly heads in Iraq:

The U.S. intelligence community warned about the “growing threat” from Sunni militants in Iraq since the beginning of the year, a senior intelligence official said Tuesday — a claim that challenges assertions by top administration officials that they were caught off guard by the capture of key Iraqi cities.

Earlier Tuesday, in an interview with Fox News, Secretary of State John Kerry said “nobody expected” Iraqi security forces to be decisively driven out by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, as they were earlier this month in Mosul.

And here comes another great kicker:

Offering a grave warning about the current strength of the group — which is a State Department-designated terror organization — the official also said that barring a major counteroffensive, the intelligence community assesses that ISIS is “well-positioned to keep the territory it has gained.”The official said the ISIS “strike force” now has between 3,000 and 5,000 members.

Fox News

So you are telling me that they were not aware that a group with a “strike force” of only 3,000-5,000 men could bring the Iraqi military down to its knees, begging their Iranian neighbors for help? You are telling me, we left the country essentially defenseless so that Obama could win the theoretical ‘early withdrawal’ points?

The entire security situation of Iraq was being ignored while it deteriorated — as was the threat from ISIl, who we were sticking out feelers months ago to see if we could get the support of people to help fight Assad… Assad being the thin guard against Islamic extremism, don’t you know.

I am beginning to be convinced that this administration totally failed in Iraq on all accounts, and so amazingly.

And we love how they actually go before the American people and say… sorry guys, we just missed it! In spite of evidence to the contrary, of course, but still… The idea that this wouldn’t, say, oh… Be a major priority to them!

Thousands of Americans died and thousands more lost limbs and lost all manner of things over in Iraq. And what did they get for that loss? Apparently, a government that is disinterested in even maintaining what little gains we made in that country, and an environment where they are willing to just throw it all away.

Shameful. Naive. Stupid.

Imagine if, at work, I just blew off one of my big assignments at work… I would be fired, and I could expect that people would laugh at me behind my back.

So what do these jokers & snakes in the Obama administration anticipate for themselves?

They just go and tell a boldfaced lie before the brainwashed public.

Feudal Communists Unwinding & Softening Image

It is as if North Korea has become aware under the new leadership of Kim Jong-eun that they are regarded for what they rightfully are: the creepy old Stalinist charisma dictatorship that also lends itself well to the stereotype of the average citizen being a soulless automaton.

In efforts to soften this image that we have of them, the North Koreans have made these events & videos that only serve to lend themselves further to the very stereotype that I assume they are trying to break.

These dances were held to mark the anniversary of the start of the career of the late Kim Jong-il. Because you aren’t living in an overbearing authoritarian state when the father of your current leader (and son of your nation’s founder) has a Holiday marking the day that he began his “career” (a career in continuing the destruction & enslavement of your country):

Now don’t have too much fun now, kids!

God, so much bliss — and check out those highly choreographed dance moves! I bet that they all came in early or stayed late at work to practice their organized dancing before the cameras. Just to illustrate what a free & light hearted nation we are, let’s all do matching dances to commemorate our leader’s career…

Not only this, but they have held a creepy Day for the Disabled event in what looks like a High School gym just to show us that the disabled also get their opportunity to participate in the Cult of Kim Jong-eun:

Events included the famous keep a balloon afloat while moving forward in a wheel chair, which was greeted with applause by the audience because everyone knows that seeing this sort of thing is just wildly entertaining. Something tells me stereotypes of the disabled in North Korea must be strong enough that they are surprised they can do anything at all.

… Of course, blind singers & deaf dancers also appear, and one of the dancers is there to insure us she only wishes she could do her routine in front of KJE.

What an unceasing freak show the North is.

US Politicians Calling for Maliki to Step Down (LOL!)

What is so utterly genius about this is that there could be no greater lack of self-awareness on the US Politician’s part — it is like they have no clue about the situation unfurling in Iraq, nor any clue about the historic divisions within the country.

I think it even reveals that these morons literally believed that Democracy would work out in some way for the Iraqis, as if these thing ever stood a chance. I used to be too crass to believe that these politicians cared at all about ideology, preferring to believe that these miscreants merely were intelligent people manipulating us — such a truth was a lot easier to swallow than the idea that the majority of these people in Washington were truly ignorant asses.

But this seals the deal:

(Reuters) – President Barack Obama came under pressure from U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday to persuade Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki to step down over what they see as failed leadership in the face of an insurgency threatening his country.

As Obama held an hour-long meeting with congressional leaders on U.S. options in Iraq, administration officials joined a chorus of criticism of Maliki, faulting him for failing to heal sectarian rifts that militants have exploited.

In Oval Office talks, Obama briefed the lawmakers on efforts to get Iraqi leaders to “set aside sectarian agendas,” reviewed options for “increased security assistance” and sought their views, the White House said.

Maliki has so far shown little willingness to create a more inclusive administration.

“The Maliki government, candidly, has got to go if you want any reconciliation,” said U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, Democratic chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Republican Senator John McCain, speaking in the Senate, called for the use of American air power, but also urged Obama to “make it make very clear to Maliki that his time is up.”

The Obama administration has not openly sought Maliki’s departure, but has shown signs of frustration with him.

“This current government in Iraq has never fulfilled the commitments it made to bring a unity government together with the Sunnis, the Kurds and the Shia,” Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told the congressional hearing.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said Maliki had not done enough “to govern inclusively and that has contributed to the situation and the crisis that we have today in Iraq.”

Reuters

LOL!

Here’s what we do:

(1) Create a democracy in a country that suffers from massive sectarianism and whose borders were largely arbitrarily created. The country also suffers from massive issues with education, health, sanitation… Literacy… You know, everything we take for granted, basically.

(2) Leave that country while it is still a toddler and has no coherent direction let alone any consensus; pull out all the forces on the advise of both Conservative & Liberal people that felt this entire Iraq conflict was going to be a shortlived event.

(3) Fund militants in a neighboring, chaotic country even when they are losing their civil war because God knows that could never accidentally spill over… 

(4) Blame Maliki, the leader of this terrible place, for failing to heal the 1200 year Sunni – Shi’a riff and the equally old Kurdish – Arab divide! Accuse him of not doing enough!

… And that is, of course, assuming that Maliki ever had such an intention in the first place. Which might be the most naive article of them all.

(5) And, of course, we are going to call for him to step down in the middle of a crippling civil war. Because NOW IS THE TIME FOR ELECTIONS! NOW IS THE TIME FOR MASSIVE GOVERNMENT CHANGE! 

Perhaps this is all an effort of sending a message that we will negotiate with any jackasses that will come to the table and sack Maliki for any deal because, as the USA, we have to see that we somehow have a foot in the door and that the scenario’s outcome is not determined by the Iranians.

The whole scenario is hilarious with big names like Feinstein & McCain coming in and making their own ridiculous statements that are naive at best.

WTF are these people?

Unless this is all part of an Evil Genius plot to communicate that we are willing to do realpolitik negotiation with ISIL, I want out.

Thailand’s Shrimping Slave Ships

I ran across this horrific piece of news that I found interesting & completely repulsive. However, I wasn’t incredibly surprised — and I would not be surprised to see if there was truly not that much action taken here to get to the bottom of this. It would be quite an error in thought to think that the totality of the world has the same concern for human rights as many Westerners…

(& needless to say, there are many Westerners as well that have little regard for human rights…)

Revealed: Asian slave labour producing prawns for supermarkets in US, UK

Thai ‘ghost ships’ that enslave and even kill workers are linked to global shrimp supply chain, Guardian investigation discovers
• Trafficked into slavery on Thai trawlers to catch food for prawns
• Thailand’s seafood industry: state-sanctioned slavery?
Ask your questions – live chat as it happened

Link to video: Globalised slavery: how big supermarkets are selling prawns in supply chain fed by slave labour

Slaves forced to work for no pay for years at a time under threat of extreme violence are being used in Asia in the production of seafood sold by major US, British and other European retailers, the Guardian can reveal.

A six-month investigation has established that large numbers of men bought and sold like animals and held against their will on fishing boats off Thailand are integral to the production of prawns (commonly called shrimp in the US) sold in leading supermarkets around the world, including the top four global retailers: Walmart, Carrefour, Costco and Tesco.

The investigation found that the world’s largest prawn farmer, the Thailand-based Charoen Pokphand (CP) Foods, buys fishmeal, which it feeds to its farmed prawns, from some suppliers that own, operate or buy from fishing boats manned with slaves.

Men who have managed to escape from boats supplying CP Foods and other companies like it told the Guardian of horrific conditions, including 20-hour shifts, regular beatings, torture and execution-style killings. Some were at sea for years; some were regularly offered methamphetamines to keep them going. Some had seen fellow slaves murdered in front of them.

Fifteen migrant workers from Burma and Cambodia also told how they had been enslaved. They said they had paid brokers to help them find work in Thailand in factories or on building sites. But they had been sold instead to boat captains, sometimes for as little as £250.

“I thought I was going to die,” said Vuthy, a former monk from Cambodia who was sold from captain to captain. “They kept me chained up, they didn’t care about me or give me any food … They sold us like animals, but we are not animals – we are human beings.”

Another trafficking victim said he had seen as many as 20 fellow slaves killed in front of him, one of whom was tied, limb by limb, to the bows of four boats and pulled apart at sea.

“We’d get beaten even if we worked hard,” said another. “All the Burmese, [even] on all the other boats, were trafficked. There were so many of us [slaves] it would be impossible to count them all.”

CP Foods – a company with an annual turnover of $33bn (£20bn) that brands itself as “the kitchen of the world” – sells its own-brand prawn feed to other farms, and supplies international supermarkets, as well as food manufacturers and food retailers, with frozen or cooked prawns and ready-made meals. It also sells raw prawn materials for food distributors.

The Guardian

I did not really see this make big news — I wouldn’t be surprised if there are powerful people not interested in the story getting out and damaging Thailand’s image. After all, they have to deal with that whole coup business and plenty of people enjoy Thailand continuing to be a safe spot for the elites of the West to go and enjoy sexual romper-roos.

Because it isn’t Iran or North Korea, little attention is paid to it.  & perhaps that’s the real story here since it would be seemingly pointless to highlight just the suffering of one little piece of the world, but the point might be to wonder why so little is cared for realities faced by many people if it doesn’t serve the immediate interest of vilifying certain people.

I am sure if we dug just a bit more on the internet we would also find tons of similar stories of horrific human misery that, of course, would make headlines if it was Iranians or Syrians or Russians or any other opponent… But when it is important trade & business partners, or nations that play host to CEO sex tourists, there is no real reason to press the issue.

Cyberbullying Law Means to Monitor Canadian Citizens

You got to love how these little things are always hidden somewhere within what seems like very innocent, well intentioned legislation — but if in any way the politicians can use a series of friendly words to empower themselves to spy on you, they certainly will:

OTTAWA — The Harper government’s new cyberbullying legislation includes little-noticed provisions that would allow police to remotely gain entry to computers and track cellphone users’ movements, privacy experts warn.

Bill C-13, being studied by the House of Commons justice committee this week, is described by the Conservatives as cyberbullying legislation, but will dramatically expand the reach of police, giving them “the power to remotely hack into computers, mobile devices, or cars in order to track location or record metadata,” according to the director of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.

Cara Zwibel told Members of Parliament that the changes were “inappropriate.”

Experts say police would be able to install viruses, or malware, into the electronics of anyone suspected of a crime, after gaining judicial approval. The bill expands the definition for “tracking device” and adds the concept of a “transmission data recorder” into the Criminal Code.

The Department of Justice wouldn’t comment on the changes, saying only that “the question of whether one type of software or another could be used is more of an operational consideration.”

At present, if police want a suspect’s data, they need to either obtain a warrant for their cellphone or laptop, or they need to go to the users’ internet or cellphone provider. If they want to track a suspect, they need to get a warrant and attach a GPS device to the suspect’s car or person.

The changes in C-13 allow police to now use a ‘‘computer program’’ to do either of those things. ‘‘‘Computer program’ means computer data representing instructions or statements that, when executed in a computer system, causes the computer system to perform a function,” the bill reads.

And this is only there following a larger international trend:

Canada wouldn’t be the first state to use the tactic. German authorities have made use of the Bundestrojaner — a trojan virus that has allows police in that country to eavesdrop on Skype conversations. The U.S. National Security Agency also developed bugs to infect and monitor millions of computers.

While C-13 is intended to target transmission data — call information, IP address, and location data — Mr. Parsons said it’s entirely possible that C-13 could capture basic data from Canadians’ Skype conversations, as well as a vast field of other digital information. “That’s the way that it reads,” he says.

National Post

Of course, it is very difficult for us as citizens within our respective Republics to even fight things like this. So many politicians are on board with it and they will simply do their best to make it a scenario where the media ceases to make it a major election issue and, of course, politicians do not take any different stance on it. It is just going to be a scenario where, in the name of self-defense and trust of government, we cede our rights to privacy increasingly to the governments of the world.

I am trying to think about what we can do to resist such measures but other than using things like The Onion Router, I am not sure. Is that even good for this?

As far as politically organizing to oppose this… That also seems like quite a stretch.

It is somewhat interesting to see Canada doing this only because they have often taken stances that are measurably better than that of the US. But this just goes to show you — the nature of government is the same everywhere, and that it is naturally taking advantage of the information age to wreck our democracy seems to just be the natural conclusion.

(… On some level I am not entirely disgusted by such a technology existing and theoretically I am not against a good government using it — but, I have yet to see any one of these modern western democracies demonstrate themselves as truly good. )

US Charges 5 in Chinese Army w/ Hacking: Can We Charge 5 in NSA w/ Hacking?

There seems to now be surfacing a precedent where we can charge foreign nationals who are actively doing service to their country’s government with hacking for tapping into the sensitive data of corporations:

The Justice Department indicted five Chinese military officers, alleging they hacked U.S. companies’ computers to steal trade secrets, a major escalation in the fight between the two superpowers over economic espionage.

The indictment, unsealed Monday, marks the first time the U.S. government has publicly accused employees of a foreign power with cybercrimes against American firms. It also marks the most extensive formal allegations by the government of the kind of hacking that American corporations have long complained about, but until now have rarely acknowledged.

Among those named as victims in the document are brand names from America’s industrial heartland, including U.S. Steel Corp., Westinghouse Electric Co. and Alcoa Inc.

U.S. officials said other cases relating to China are being prepared. In addition, alleged hackers in Russia are likely to be charged soon, according to people familiar with the government’s investigations. U.S. agencies have also been investigating incidents with possible ties to Iran and Syria, these people say.

It is unlikely the suspects will ever be brought to trial in the U.S., since there is no extradition treaty with China. Yet in publicly naming the five, and providing details in a 48-page indictment, the Obama administration is ratcheting up the political and diplomatic costs to China and others if they use computers to steal secrets or attack U.S. interests.

Wall Street Journal

The only question I have… Can we charge the NSA or other US Gov’t agencies with, similarly, violating the property of American parties?

The definite plus side is that, since we are Americans, we can actually bring them to justice as we have jurisdiction over these agents who operate within America! 

The difference, of course, is that the most powerful office in America protects some Americans from hacking into the accounts and sensitive information, but it doesn’t prevent others. A significant barrier to justice…

But I thought only corrupt countries had ways of skirting their own laws for the powerful and elite to fulfill their will?

… Only corrupt countries.

Anti-Russian Policy Compromises US Space Program

The Obama administration has dropped the ball on effectively containing Russian foreign policy successes — whether Syria or the Ukraine, the Russians have been able to get everything they want and then some.

Recently we put some really cute sanctions on the Russians — incredibly weak and ineffective ones that cannot disrupt the Russians in any real sense but are meant to look like they are doing something. Sec. of State John Kerry refers to this as a scalpel rather than a hammer, as if to lend credence to his impotent policies.

But the Russians, of course, are not going to stand by and watch:

Here is an informative video on the issue:

And here is a more detailed article specifically concerning rockets:

PARIS, WASHINGTON – Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said May 13 that Moscow would halt the sale of RD-180 and NK-33 rocket engines to the U.S. for the purpose of launching military satellites.

The RD-180 is used to power the first stage of the United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket, while a modified version of the NK-33 – the Aerojet Rocketdyne AJ-26 – provides core propulsion on the first stage of the Orbital Sciences Corp. Antares launch vehicle.

“We will assume that, without guarantees that our engines are used only for launching non-military spacecraft, we won’t be able to deliver them to the U.S.,” Rogozin told reporters during a news conference.

ULA, which says it has more than two year’s worth of RD-180 engines in its U.S. inventory, is “not aware of any restrictions,” according to a company statement. “If recent news reports are accurate, it affirms that [Space Exploration Technology’s] SpaceX’s irresponsible actions have created unnecessary distractions, threatened U.S. military satellite operations, and undermined our future relationship with the International Space Station.” The company is referencing a protest in Federal Claims Court filed April 28 by SpaceX claiming that the Air Force’s five-year, sole-source deal with ULA unfairly cut the company, and its new Falcon 9 v1.1 launcher, out of the competition. The filing prompted a temporary injunction in payments for RD-180 work and thrust the issue into the public debate amid mounting tensions between Washington and Moscow.

Aviation Week

The whole venture has been a great disaster in the end for Americans who will now have to find other means to send satellites into space if they are truly determined to continue squaring off with the Russians.

This, of course, comes with the fact that our economy isn’t what it used to be and our entire military sector is merely a series of vast dependencies on military contractors who are fleecing the tax payers. Of course, we will get off the ground again — and spend ten times as much as necessary towards Northrop-Grumman or some other contracting agency that makes far too much money.

This whole Ukraine debacle has only shown the inability of the European & American dove administrations from doing anything effective at all.

It is hard to watch these people work. They are nothing more than overly idealistic imbeciles who really look like they are having their first go at foreign policy — and for all intents & purposes, that is fairly true. 🙂