Showing posts from September 10, 2017

Greece mourns slain anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Fyssas

A self-professed Golden Dawn member stabbed leftist rapper Killah P to death in Piraeus four years ago on September 18. Patrick Strickland 15 Sep 2017 12:47 GMT Piraeus, Greece -  Magda Fyssas walks to the corner of her living room and lights four crimson-coloured candles. She places them next to a smaller, already-lit white candle under a large charcoal sketch of her son, an anti-fascist rapper who was killed by a self-professed Golden Dawn member four years ago. In the memory-filled home she says now feels empty, she does this every day. The murder of 34-year-old Pavlos Fyssas on September 18, 2013, ignited weeks of anti-fascist protests, clashes with riot police and altercations with Golden Dawn, the neo-fascist party that holds 17 seats in Greece's parliament.  Protesters rally in cities across the country every year on the anniversary of his death, mourning Pavlos and other victims of far-right violence. His murder was a turning point for the anti-fascist movem

Chelsea manning episode - A double standard at Harvard?

Harvard must have known that selecting Chelsea Manning for a fellowship would incite controversy, because there’s virtually no other reason to choose her. Unlike the people traditionally selected for the university’s prestigious Institute of Politics fellowship, Manning has no political experience to share with students. Her claim to fame — or infamy, depending on your point of view — was her role in leaking 750,000 documents to WikiLeaks, a crime for which she was sentenced in 2010 to 35 years in prison.  So it’s a bit unconvincing for university officials to act like they’ve been blindsided by criticism of the appointment. In a midnight press release Friday, the university announced it was  withdrawing the offer  with a head-scratching explanation. “I see more clearly now that many people view a visiting fellow title as an honorific, so we should weigh that consideration when offering invitations,” said the dean of Harvard’s school of government, Douglas W. Elmendorf. Harva

US drone attack kills 3 Taliban militants in Pakistan

A US drone attack today killed at least three Taliban militants, including a commander, in Pakistan's unruly tribal region near the Afghan border, security officials said. PTI This is the first drone attack since US President Donald Trump announced his new Afghan policy and also criticised Pakistan for providing safe havens to terrorists. (Representative Image: Reuters) A US drone attack today killed at least three Taliban militants, including a commander, in Pakistan’s unruly tribal region near the Afghan border, security officials said. Two missiles were fired near the Pak-Afghan border from an unmanned aerial vehicle, killing the suspects and injuring another, they said. Maulana Muhibullah, a militant commander, was killed along with other militants in the strike in the Charmanak area, linked to the Afghan district of Paktika, the security officials said. “Two missiles were dropped on the home of Maulvi Mohibullah and three people have been killed,” Baseer Khan Wazir,

US urges Kurds to call off independence vote

Washington officials fear referendum will disrupt war against ISIL and hurt Iraqi PM al-Abadi's re-election chances. The United States has sternly urged the semi-autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan to call off its independence referendum, saying the timing for the vote is not right. Iraqi Kurdish legislators on Friday approved the September 25 vote that was set in motion by regional president Massud Barzani, a Washington ally who has publicly kept open the option of postponing it. Washington has long supported Kurdish autonomy and has relied on the region's forces in the war against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group, but it fears that now is not the time for the people to seize their freedom. US officials fear the vote, while not legally binding, will hurt Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's re-election chances; complicate ties with Turkey; and disrupt the war against ISIL (also known as ISIS). "The United States has repeatedly

Six Argentinians sentenced to life for 'Dirty War' role

Defendants convicted of committing crimes against humanity during Argentina's 'Dirty war' era in the 1970s. Six Argentinians have been sentenced to life after being convicted of committing crimes against humanity during the country's right-wing military rule from 1976-1983. Argentina suffered one of the most brutal dictatorships in Latin America during that era, known as the "Dirty war". According to human rights organisations, 30,000 people were kidnapped or disappeared in that era. Judges at a federal court in northern Argentina's Tucuman jailed 10 of 17 people accused of involvement in the so-called "Operation Independence". Three others who were supposed to go on trial died. During the military rule about 500 children were illegally taken from their families, according to the human rights group Grandmothers de Plaza de Mayo, which continues to search for the missing children. Among the victims' family members in court durin

New Mideast realities require support for Kurds

In 2016, Iraqi Kurdish President Masoud Barzani told me that Mideast chaos had already destroyed the region’s old borders. “There are new realities on the ground,” Barzani proclaimed, in his hilltop palace above the Iraqi Kurdish capital, Erbil. Prime among them: As  peshmerga  fighters liberated Kurdish lands from ISIS, the time was ripe for Iraqi Kurds to hold a referendum on independence. With the ISIS caliphate vanquished, the referendum is finally set for Sept. 25. It won’t call for an immediate split, since the Iraqi Kurds want to negotiate their separation from Baghdad. Think of it as a Kurdish Brexit. Yet the referendum is fiercely opposed by the central Iraqi government and by neighboring Turkey and Iran, who fear it will inspire their own Kurdish rebels. And U.S. officials also strongly oppose it, insisting Iraq must remain one unified country. Washington should think again. Barzani is correct; the Mideast times are a-changin’. Rather than block a Kurdish separa

Iran recruits Afghan and Pakistani Shiites to fight in Syria

FILE - In this Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013 file photo, a Pakistani boy, whose brother was killed in bombing, is comforted by a relative in Quetta, Pakistan. Thousands of Pakistani and Afghan Shiites have been recruited by Iran to fight in Syria generating fears that their return could aggravate sectarian rivalries, say counterterrorism officials as well as analysts, who track militant movements. (AP Photo/Arshad Butt, File)  ISLAMABAD (AP) -- Thousands of Shiite Muslims from Afghanistan and Pakistan are being recruited by Iran to fight with President Bashar al-Assad's forces in Syria, lured by promises of housing, a monthly salary of up to $600 and the possibility of employment in Iran when they return, say counterterrorism officials and analysts. These fighters, who have received public praise from Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, even have their own brigades, but counterterrorism officials in both countries worry about the mayhem they might cause when t

Commander: Iraq launches operation near Syrian border

BAGHDAD (AP) — An Iraqi military commander says troops have launched a multi-pronged operation to capture a town near the Syrian border from the Islamic State group. Lt. Gen. Abdul-Amir Rasheed Yar Allah said Saturday the operation to liberate Akashat aims at securing part of the borders and the area north of the vital highway that links Baghdad to neighboring Jordan and Syria. The spokesman for the Joint Military Command, Brig. Gen. Yahya Rasool, says the U.S.-led coalition is offering aerial support for different factions of troops. Akashat is a small town west of Anbar province located south of the IS-held, strategic towns of Qaim, Rawa and Ana. IS has been driven out of most of the territories it seized in 2014, from northern Iraq through the country's center and across western Anbar province. Source:

Police, protesters clash in St. Louis after ex-cop acquitted of murdering black man

Protesters march in reaction to the not guilty verdict in the murder trial of Jason Stockley, a former St. Louis police officer, charged with the 2011 shooting of Anthony Lamar Smith, who was black, in St. Louis, Missouri, U.S., September 15, 2017. REUTERS/Whitney Curtis/ By Valerie Volcovici and Kenny Bahr ST. LOUIS (Reuters) - Police using tear gas and rubber bullets clashed with demonstrators in St Louis in the early hours of Saturday after a white former policeman was acquitted of murdering a black suspect. A peaceful protest over Friday's not guilty verdict turned violent after police confronted a small group of demonstrators - three years after the police shooting of another black suspect in the nearby suburb of Ferguson stirred nationwide anger and debate. Officers fired tear gas as people broke windows at a library, a restaurant and a home and threw bricks and water bottles at officers. Eight officers were injured, police said. Former city policeman Ja

Jammu and Kashmir: 2 terrorists killed as infiltration bid is foiled in Kupwara's Machil sector

Security forces on Saturday foiled a infiltration bid in the Machil sector of Jammu and Kashmir's Kupwara district and killed two terrorists,  ANI  reported. According to the report, the encounter is still underway in the area. #FLASH : Infiltration bid foiled in Machil sector of J&K's Kupwara district; two terrorists gunned down. Operation underway. — ANI (@ANI)  September 16, 2017 "An infiltration bid has been foiled in Machhil sector and two terrorists have been killed," defence spokesman Col. Rajesh Kalia said. Kalia said troops noticed suspicious movement along the LoC and challenged the intruders, leading to a gunfight in which the two militants were killed. Weapons have been recovered from the slain militants, the spokesman said. The latest development came just hours after Pakistan  violated the ceasefire in Arnia sector , killing livestock and damaging several properties. IANS  reported that the Pakistan forces

British police hunt for London train bomb suspects

Emergency personnel attend to a person after an incident at Parsons Green underground station in London, Britain, September 15, 2017. REUTERS/Yann Tessier By Kate Holton LONDON (Reuters) - Britain deployed hundreds of soldiers at strategic sites on Saturday to free up police to hunt those behind a bomb which injured 29 people on a packed commuter train in London and triggered the country's highest security level. Prime Minister Theresa May said the critical threat level meant an attack may be imminent, after a bomb engulfed a carriage in flames and sparked a stampede during the Friday morning rush hour in west London. The home-made bomb, which apparently failed to detonate properly, was the fifth major terrorism attack in Britain this year and was claimed by Islamic State. The militants have claimed other attacks in Britain this year, including two in London and one at a pop concert in Manchester. The attack at Parsons Green tube station prompted the government