Category: Drug Trade

Published time: May 08, 2013 14:51


President Vladimir Putin, center, chairs a Security Council meeting on May 8, 2013. (RIA Novosti / Alexei Druzhinin)

President Vladimir Putin, center, chairs a Security Council meeting on May 8, 2013. (RIA Novosti / Alexei Druzhinin)

The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) does almost nothing to eradicate drug production in Afghanistan, and this drug-trafficking problem will likely worsen in the near future, Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated.

The NATO security mission – which will pull out of Afghanistan in 2014 – has failed to bring stability to the region, Putin said at a meeting of the Russian Security Council on Wednesday.

There are all grounds to believe that we may face an escalation of the situation in Afghanistan in the short term,” the president said.

The foreign military contingent, whose backbone is American forces, has not achieved a breakthrough in the fight against terrorist and radical groups as yet. On the contrary, their activity has been particularly increasing lately,” Putin explained.

There has also been “a drastic increase in drug production in the territory of Afghanistan and the creation of stable drug-trafficking routes to other countries, including – unfortunately – to Russia,” he said. Putin also noted that the ISAF does little to address the problem, while Russia’s proposals on the matter have so far been ignored.

International terrorist and radical groups in Afghanistan “do not conceal their plans to export instability and will try to carry sabotage over to the territories of neighboring states and Russia,” Putin said, adding that this would lead to an increase in drug-trafficking, crime, fundamentalism and uncontrolled flows of refugees.

In that connection, we must have a clear strategy of actions, which would take into consideration various scenarios for the development of the events,” he stressed.

Read Full Article Here




How MI6, CIA spend tax money on propping up drug production

Annie Machon is a former intel­li­gence officer for the UK’s MI5, who resigned in 1996 to blow the whistle. She is now a writer, public speaker and a Director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.

Published time: May 07, 2013 10:48
Edited time: May 07, 2013 12:01

An Afghan farmer collects raw opium as he works in a poppy field in Khogyani District of Nangarhar province on April 29, 2013. (AFP Photo)

An Afghan farmer collects raw opium as he works in a poppy field in Khogyani District of Nangarhar province on April 29, 2013. (AFP Photo)

With both the CIA and MI6 secretly providing ‘ghost money’ bribes to the Afghan political establishment, it’s likely that Afghans will increasingly support a resurgent Taliban and the drug trade will be further propped up.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai, has recently been criticized for taking ‘ghost money’ from the CIA and MI6. The sums are unknown – for the usual reasons of ‘national security’ – but are estimated to have been in the tens of millions of dollars. While this is nowhere near the eye-bleeding $12 billion shipped over to Iraq on pallets in the wake of the invasion a decade ago, it is still a significant amount.

And how has this money been spent?  Certainly not on social projects or rebuilding initiatives.  Rather, the reporting indicates, the money has been funneled to Karzai’s cronies as bribes in a corrupt attempt to buy influence in the country.

None of this surprises me. MI6 has a long and ignoble history of trying to buy influence in countries of interest.  In 1995/96 it funded a ‘ragtag group of Islamic extremists,’ headed up by a Libyan military intelligence officer, in an illegal attempt to try to assassinate Colonel Gaddafi.  The attack went wrong and innocent people were killed. When this scandal was exposed, it caused an outcry.

Yet a mere 15 years later, MI6 and the CIA were back in Libya, providing support to the same ‘rebels,’ who this time succeeded in capturing, torturing and killing Gaddafi, while plunging Libya into apparently endless internecine war. This time around there was little international outcry, as the world’s media portrayed this aggressive interference in a sovereign state as ‘humanitarian relief.’

And we also see the same in Syria now, as the CIA and MI6 are already providing training and communication support to the rebels – many of whom, particularly the Al Nusra faction in control of the oil-rich north-east of Syria are in fact allied with Al-Qaeda in Iraq.  So in some countries the UK and USA use drones to target and murder “militants” (plus villagers, wedding parties and other assorted innocents), while in others they back ideologically similar groups.


Read Full Article Here

 photo Rockefeller_cocaine1_zpsf903b1a9.jpg


By Dean Henderson

With 2,100 people dead from cholera since the devastating January 2010 Haitian earthquake and another 650,000 expected to contract the disease within the next six months, the last thing Haiti needed was another rigged election.  But the nation’s role as wage floor for multinational corporations, combined with its geographic importance to the CIA-orchestrated Columbian cocaine trade, made the November 28th 2010 election fraud which provoked fiery protests all too predictable.

(The following is excerpted from Chapter 16: The Mexican Fast Track: Big Oil & Their Bankers… )

The shortest route from Columbia’s San Andres Island to Miami passes through the island of Haiti, where Bank of Nova Scotia subsidiary Scotia bank dominates finance.  The Zionist Bronfman family-controlled Bank of Nova Scotia is the leading gold dealer in the cocaine-infested Caribbean Silver Triangle.  It owned the 200 tons of gold recovered beneath the rubble of the World Trade Center in late 2001.  Gold is the currency of choice in the British Crown-controlled global narcotics trade.

From the 1970′s until 1986 Haiti was ruled by Jean-Claude (Papa Doc) and son Baby Doc Duvalier.  The dictators were propped up by the US, which sent them over $400 million.  What didn’t end up in Duvalier pockets was used by US corporations to set up factories to take advantage of super-cheap Haitian labor.  Haiti was the centerpiece of the Caribbean Basin Initiative, launched by David Rockefeller’s International Basic Economy Corporation, which aimed to create a low-wage manufacturing platform in the Caribbean for its multinational corporate tentacles.

Real wages in Haiti declined 56% from 1983-1991 after the Caribbean Basin Initiative kicked in.  Haitian exports boomed with companies like Rawlings sending sweat shop manufactured baseballs to the US. Dallas oilman and Intercontinental Hotels owner Clint Murchison operated meat packing plants in Haiti, which he entrusted to the watchful eye of the later-assassinated CIA agent and Lee Harvey Oswald handler George de Mohrenschildt.  The devastated US textile industry has been largely outsourced to Haiti.  Nowhere in the world is labor cheaper.

Baby Doc Duvalier fell after a popular revolt in 1986 and retired on the French Riviera, alongside other US tin cup dictators.  That year the CIA created the Haitian National Intelligence Service (SIN).  The acronym, which it shares with Peruvian intelligence, is likely a tongue-in-cheek M16 Freemason joke.  SIN was created under the guise of fighting drug trafficking, but its officials simply took over the Columbian coke transshipment trade from Duvalier’s cronies- the Tonton Macoutes.  Haitian gangs took over the drug trade in many US cities.

Despite a US Congressional ban on aid to Haiti, SIN received $1 million/year from the CIA, while the Company set about training and equipping the new Haitian military.  The CIA was trying to put a lid on the leftist revolution which swept Baby Doc from power- the Lavalas Family Movement.  SIN set about on a reign of terror against the Haitian left, taking over where Duvalier’s Tonton Macoutes left off.  In 1989 the head of SIN Colonel Ernesto Prudhomme led a brutal interrogation of progressive Port-au-Prince Mayor Evans Paul.  Former SIN chief Colonel Leopold Clerjeune was also present.  Mayor Paul came away with five broken ribs and serious internal injuries.

A US Embassy official said of SIN, “It was a military organization that distributed drugs in Haiti.  SIN never produced drug intelligence.  The Agency gave them money under counter-narcotics and they used their training to do other things in the political arena.”

The Zionist Bronfman family-controlled Bank of Nova Scotia is the leading gold dealer in the cocaine-infested Caribbean Silver Triangle.  It owned the 200 tons of gold recovered beneath the rubble of the World Trade Center in late 2001.  Gold is the currency of choice in the British Crown-controlled global narcotics trade.

One of those “other things” was masterminding the coup that overthrew populist President Jean Bertrand Aristide – the Roman Catholic priest who won Haiti’s first democratic elections in 1991.  Aristide was a leader of the Lavalas Family Movement.  He preached liberation theology, the Catholic left turn that came out of the 1968 Medellin Vatican II Conference, inspiring revolution throughout Latin America.  Aristide had earlier escaped three assassination attempts by Duvalier’s Tonton Macoutes.

Upon taking office Aristide began arresting SIN officials involved in drug trafficking and raised the Haitian minimum wage from $.22/hour to $.37/hour.  US corporations groused and began a smear campaign against Aristide.  USAID came to their rescue, launching a $26.7 million US-taxpayer-funded assault on Aristide’s minimum wage proposal and other progressive initiatives he had implemented.

Read Full Article Here

Investigation: US ATF Secretly Arming Mexican Drug Cartels (Mar 3, 2011 – CBS)

Uploaded on Mar 4, 2011

March 3, 2011. CBS Evening News. Gun Walking. Interview with ATF Federal agent John Dodson. ATF was intentionally sending heavy weaponry to Mexican drug cartels. The secret operation was called Fast and Furious.

Medical Examiner FULL Press Conference – Sandy Hook School Mass Shooting

Published on Dec 17, 2012


Connecticut Chief Medical Examiner H. Wayne Carver provides an update to the media after he and his team examined the victims’ bodies at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown following Friday’s mass shooting.

Uploaded on Mar 5, 2011

Politics, Legislation and Economy News

Breaking: Romney’s “Bain Capital” Drug Front For Bush Cartel (Video)

by  Gordon Duff, Senior Editor

I can’t guarantee the video you will see will save your grandchildren or bring back our freedoms. What I can guarantee is this:  Anyone who sees this will demand the immediate arrest of Mitt Romney and the entire Bush drug cartel.

[A Long Editors Note:  This material is as much a disgrace to American media as anything else, on top of the Intel community who has sat by and watched these high level criminal organizations operate with government and even Intel protection. They were warned that the deeper the shadow gov guys got their hooks in the more aggressive they would be in ‘what they wanted’. But cowardice was the word.

All those that took their phony oaths chose to keep enjoying their own gravy train ride to retirement and join the multiple pension and paycheck brigade, which has turned out to be what way to many of them were serving. We are now in a much worse situation, looking down a double barreled coup in action. Bush 911 was first, now the Romney ‘cleaners’.

The Bush family went to great lengths to hide their long time shady dealings, but Romney’s sliding by on his with all of this stuff just laying out there for anyone to find who wanted to. It’s proof that investigative journalism has been co-opted. Only ‘permitted’ kind is allowed, and against ‘approved targets’ only.

We are truly showing the signs of a defeated people, a la the last days of Rome. The main difference of course is that there are no barbarian hordes coming. It’s the folks wearing the white robes and olive twine tiaras who are putting it to us. There is some resistance, and it is growing, but the door is still locked for any legal solution as law enforcement has also been compromised. So far, they refuse to prosecute ‘protected entities’. Actually their terminology for it is ‘they just can’t’.

They will not move when they fear their being taken out as a 99% certainty. And they don’t see the public lifting a finger to defend them, so the folks do not get off scott free here. If you want a champion to fight for you, you have to be able to offer them some protection, like if anything happens to them or their families there would be ‘hell to pay for it’.

The 99% certainly of retribution is a weapon that the public has not shown the gumption to pick up yet. And yes, the main line vet orgs, churches, academia, are AWOL, the ‘not my job man’ attitude ruling there.

The Vet orgs will not even take on Homeland Security for looting counter terrorism funding (the Fusion Center scandal) for patronage, and then leaving combat vets with PTSD waiting six months for an appointment due to shrink personnel shortages and funding. They won’t even discuss Israeli espionage here, period.

If everybody keeps waiting for someone else to do the tough work and get a free ride they will find themselves on a highway to hell. There are a lot of people around the world further down this road than we are. Maybe we should interview some to share what it is like for those having a hard time ‘getting it’ over here

As Mike Harris says on almost all of his radio shows, “Nobody is going to save us, folks. Either we do it, or it won’t get done.” ...Jim W. Dean]


The slide chosen from the video is a favorite.  There is a reason for that, it is appropriate.  The video deals with one aspect of Romney’s character and how he earned the trust of some very dangerous people.

I am trusted by a select group of special operations personnel because I have shown myself capable of acts I may now regret, acts done, theoretically, in defense of my country. I now question those things, were I to do less, I would be less than human.  “Less than human,” that has a ring to it.

The film is made by someone making all the right assumptions about Romney, that he would not be where is he unless he had done something to earn the trust of, well, of the absolutely worst people on earth.

It’s worse than you can even imagine

He has proven himself “one of them,” a man who has shown there is nothing he won’t do, a man who has proven he has no respect for human life, no consideration for humanity whatsoever.

He is a man in the image of Dick Cheney and Henry Kissinger, a man of the “Bush” mold, a “superior man,” one of the Nietzsche crowd that looks on us, on our children and grandchildren and sees only “useless eaters “, not even cannon fodder.

To “Mitt,” throwing us into gas chambers would be considered too much of a courtesy or bother.  If you feel I am overstating, you obviously didn’t see the film.

Recent talk has been about civil war.  I have watched Americans who stood for honor and decency murdered, imprisoned, poisoned, put in mental hospitals, destroyed economically while the nation has been systematically looted.

This is a 40 minute video. Send it to everyone you know.  Watch the whole thing.

[Editors Note: At 37:45 you will see the Romney campaign issuing a damning statement of Obama’s failure to protect America overseas, only TWO minutes after Secretary Clinton gave her first press conference, and Romney’s people said the entire foreign policy team concurred with the attack tactic…Jim W. Dean]

If you want to know who the enemy is, why Americans need guns and who we will have to fight, watch it. If you want the assurance that a war is coming and it is going to be against each and every decent American, you will learn the facts right here.

I don’t care if Obama was born on the moon, I don’t care if Clinton did pages three at a time.

Like many Americans involved in that “secret world,” I was called on from time to time to clean up messes, sometimes for big shots, sometimes for Bush family members, sometimes for others who made simple mistakes, murdered the wrong hooker, kidnapped and killed the wrong kid or stole a few billion dollars of the wrong person’s money.

No, none of this really happens, life is all “Duty, Honor, Country,” just like it says on West Point, the place where General Myer graduated from.

Ask me why I would take the bulldozer used by the IDF to murder Rachel Corrie, something every American should learn about, and start in Washington until we have to rebuild the whole thing.

We can walk away, my generation, the Vietnam generation, knowing we have been the worst generation in history, selling our souls, mortgaging future generations for centuries to  come.

We have done little more than this since 1980 and, just perhaps, if all of us have to lose more than we already have, even if it is our lives, we still will not have balanced the scales.

I’m not leaving America and I’m not living here with drug dealers, murderers and traitors running this country. I’m also not prepared to stay as quiet as I have been, playing along silently.

I call on every American sworn to service, police, all military, every state, municipal and federal employee, every person of decency, everyone who has lost much or taken too much while others have suffered. This has to end and end now.


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Crossroads News : Changes In The World Around Us And Our Place In It

Government Corruption :  Drug War

40 Indicted in Meth Ring Run From Indiana Prisons

Ken Kusmer
Indianapolis – A prison inmate coordinated a methamphetamine ring that involved at least two Indiana prisons using cellphones and drugs smuggled in by guards, according to a federal indictment unsealed Wednesday that charges 40 people in connection to the scheme.

At least three inmates are among those charged, including the alleged ringleader, Oscar Perez, who’s serving time for murder and attempted murder. At least 17 people appeared in court Wednesday in Indianapolis after about 300 FBI agents fanned out across the state and made arrests.

Prosecutors said the defendants were flight risks, and the judge ordered them to remain in custody.

The activity, which also included heroin trafficking, occurred at the Westville Correction Facility in northern Indiana and the Wabash Valley Correction Facility in southwestern Indiana, according to the indictment.

Court documents allege that one corrections officer, Jon Dobbins, was found “in possession” of nearly 21 grams of a mixture and substance containing meth, and had a cellphone that he was going to “clandestinely bring” into the prison and leave with an inmate.

Dobbins didn’t have a listed phone number in Indiana, according to phone records. The indictment refers to multiple prison guards being involved.

The Indiana Department of Correction issued a statement saying it has been cooperating with the FBI since the investigation began and that that department uncovered the evidence that identified and led to the state criminal charges against Dobbins.

Source: The Associated Press

Politics  Legislation and Economy News




Published on Aug 9, 2012 by

Ben Swann Reality Check takes a look at some stunning new accusations by a high ranking member of the Sinaloa Drug Cartel that Fast and Furious was about the U.S. supporting one cartel while attempting to shut down others






Mexican drug smuggling tunnel unearthed

A 240-yard-long drug smuggling tunnel under the US-Mexican border has been unearthed.

Mexico US drug tunnel

Image 1 of 3
The US entrance to a cross border tunnel linking a commercial building in San Luis, Arizona to Mexico

The six feet by two feet tunnel, equipped with lighting and ventilation, was discovered on Saturday when officers raided a business on the Arizona side of the border, which concealed the US entrance.

Three people were arrested, according to a statement about the US operation by federal and local law enforcement bodies.

The US raid was coordinated with the Mexican military, which entered an ice-making plant across the border, said the US statement.

The “sophisticated” tunnel, which was 55 feet underground, led from the Arizona town of San Luis to the ice plant across the border in Mexico in San Luis Rio Colorado.

The tunnel’s US entrance was located in a storage room hidden beneath a large water tank, in a one-story “nondescript” building. US authorities had been monitoring the business since January due to “suspicious activity.”

Watch Video Here

Politics and Legislation

‘US respects no one’s sovereignty’

Published on Jul 1, 2012 by

At least eight people have been killed in the latest US assassination drone strike in the northwestern tribal belt of Pakistan, near the border with Afghanistan. The unmanned aircraft fired two missiles at a house in North Waziristan on Sunday morning.

Press TV has conducted an interview with Syed Tariq Pirzada, strategic affairs analyst, to hear his opinion on this issue.




Lasting peace possible only if Israel ends occupation: Iran

TEHRAN, July 2 (MNA) – The Iranian ambassador to the Human Rights Council has said that lasting peace can be established in the region only if the Zionist regime ends its occupation of the Palestinian territories.
Ambassador Mohammad Reza Sajjadi made the remarks in Geneva on Monday in a speech during a meeting of the Human Rights Council after Richard Falk, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights on Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, presented his report to the council.

Following are excerpts of the text of Sajjadi’s speech:

My delegation would like to thank the Special Rapporteur for his detailed report submitted to the council.

Highlighting the violation of human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory with reference to (the) “Israeli regime(‘s) policy and practice of targeted killing” as well as “widespread and abusive use of administrative detention procedures”, the report obviously illustrates flagrant violation of human rights in the Palestine and draws attention to some horrific incidents (caused) by so-called “Israeli Defense Forces.”

The incidences of extrajudicial executions or assassinations underscored in the report as well as the recent upsurge of violence by (the) Israeli regime in Gaza are just (the) tip of (the) iceberg demonstrating that this regime continues and even intensifies its heinous crimes against the oppressed and defenseless Palestinian people in defiance of human rights principles, international law, UN resolutions and even the basic norms of decency. What is perplexing is that the Israeli regime, enjoying the unflagging support of the Western bloc, continues to perpetrate its crimes and violations with a sense of impunity.

It is high time for the council to defend more effectively the human rights of (the) Palestinian people and adopt a firm position and urge the international community to counter the said regime’s inhumane policies and practices against the defenseless Palestinians.

The Islamic Republic of Iran believes that the settlement of the Palestinian crisis would be achievable only if the inalienable rights of the people of the occupied Palestine (are) fully recognized, restored, and maintained.

The only solution to the Palestinian issue (necessary for the) establishment of peace is restoration of the sovereignty right to Palestine and putting an end to occupation.

The Palestinian people should be allowed to express their opinions freely regarding their fate and future and the kind of state and government they want to have through a referendum with the participation of all (the) Palestinian people.






Egypt’s Mursi meets with Christian leaders, activists to broaden support

The Muslim Brotherhood’s President-elect Mohamed Mursi (C) meets with Christian leaders from different denominations at the presidential palace in Cairo. (Reuters)

The Muslim Brotherhood’s President-elect Mohamed Mursi (C) meets with Christian leaders from different denominations at the presidential palace in Cairo. (Reuters)


Egyptian youth activists and Christian leaders met with President-elect Mohammed Mursi on Wednesday to work towards “achieving the goals of the uprising which ousted his predecessor Hosni Mubarak last year,” the Egypt Independent newspaper reported.

Egyptian activist Wael Ghoneim, known for his prominent role during the January 25 Revolution, said the meeting discussed the importance of transparency in all decisions made by Mursi’s government, which is due to be installed after he is inaugurated at the weekend.

Ghoneim has previously said he has several reservations on the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mursi even though he voted for him.

“Many people did not vote for Mursi because he is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood or the chairman of its political wing the Freedom and Justice Party, but because they did not want to opt for a member of the former regime,” Ghoneim said earlier this month in reference to the election runoff which saw Mursi pitted against former prime minister Ahmed Shafiq.

In the talks Mursi held with the youth activists, Asmaa Mahfouz, one of the founders of Egypt’s April 6 Youth Movement, said Mursi’s promises “are calculated but he seems to mean well for Egypt,” Egypt Independent reported.

Mursi also met with Christian leaders and the families of those killed in the uprising, seeking to broaden support before a handover of power by the ruling generals, due by June 30.

His first appointments as president-elect of Egypt will be a woman and a Coptic Christian, his spokesman has told the Guardian this week, as he moves to allay fears of the Brotherhood.

Samah al-Essawy said that although the names of the two choices had not been finalized, they would be Mursi’s two vice-presidents.

When the appointments go through, they will constitute the first time in Egypt’s history that either a woman or a Coptic Christian has occupied such a high-ranking position.

Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday congratulated Egypt’s newly elected Islamist president, but cautioned that the election was just a first step towards true democracy.

“We have congratulated President (Mohammed) Mursi and the Egyptian people for continuing on their path to democratic transition,” Clinton told reporters in Helsinki.

President-elect Mursi, of the once-banned Muslim Brotherhood, is in the process of forming a government after he was proclaimed Egypt’s first democratically elected president on Sunday, a year and a half after street protests toppled veteran strongman and U.S. ally Hosni Mubarak.

“We have heard some very positive statements so far,” Clinton said, hailing among other things Mursi’s pledge to honor international obligations, “which would, in our view, cover the peace treaty with Israel,” signed in 1979 and which many feared could be abandoned with an Islamist in power.

However, Clinton cautioned, “one election does not a democracy make.”

The historic vote was “just the beginning of hard work, and hard work requires pluralism, respecting the rights of minorities, an independent judiciary and independent media,” she said.

“We expect President Mursi to demonstrate a commitment to inclusivity that is manifested by representatives of the women of Egypt, of the Coptic Christian community, of the secular, non-religious community and young people,” she added.



100 Iranian MPs call for blocking Hormuz Strait

TEHRAN, July 2 (MNA) – The Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Committee has put forward a proposal to block the strategic Strait of Hormuz to prevent the passage of tankers that carry oil for the countries that have imposed sanctions on Iran, an Iranian MP announced on Sunday.
Speaking to the Persian service of the Mehr News Agency, MP Ebrahim Aqa-Mohammadi said that the proposal had been signed by 100 MPs as of Sunday.

The measure would be a response to the European Union’s oil embargo on Iran that took effect on July 1 and a new U.S. law that penalizes countries that do business with the Central Bank of Iran by denying their banks access to the United States market. The law came into force on June 28.

The Strait of Hormuz is one of the world’s most strategic shipping channels. It connects the vast majority of the world’s countries with the crude oil that fuels their economies.

At its narrowest point, the strait is 21 miles wide, with a two-mile shipping lane on either side. On average, 14 supertankers sail through the strait every day.

MP Arsalan Fat’hipour said on Sunday that if Iran is unfairly targeted, it will not allow “even one drop of oil” to pass through the Strait of Hormuz.

According to the Fars News Agency, he also played down the effects of sanctions against Iran and said, “We have been sanctioned for 33 years and have faced worse conditions than this, but nothing happened.”




Syrian opposition discusses transition in Cairo meeting, FSA boycotts

At least 250 members of various Syrian opposition groups have gathered in Cairo to discuss a common political vision for their country. (Reuters)

At least 250 members of various Syrian opposition groups have gathered in Cairo to discuss a common political vision for their country. (Reuters)

By Al Arabiya with Agencies

A meeting for the Syrian opposition groups kicked off in Cairo on Monday mainly to discuss a new international plan for a transitional Syrian government. They are also expected to hold talks on Tuesday with Arab ministers in a bid to agree on a shared platform, Egyptian media and the Arab League said.

The Arab League chief called on the fragmented Syrian opposition to unite during the opening session of the meeting.

Arab League Secretary General Nabil al-Arabi addressed nearly 250 members of the Syrian opposition at the meeting on Monday in an effort to get disparate groups to pull together. It is the first time the Arab League hosts a meeting of the Syrian opposition.

Arabi said the opposition “must not miss this opportunity” to unite, adding that the Syrian people are more valuable than any factional disagreements.

Syria-based rebel fighters and activists earlier on Monday said they would boycott the opposition meeting in Cairo, denouncing it as a “conspiracy” that served the policy goals of Damascus allies Moscow and Tehran.

“We refuse all kinds of dialogue and negotiation with the killer gangs … and we will not allow anyone to impose on Syria and its people the Russian and Iranian agendas,” said a statement signed by the rebel Free Syrian Army and “independent” activists.

The signatories criticized the agenda of the Cairo talks for “rejecting the idea of a foreign military intervention to save the people … and ignoring the question of buffer zones protected by the international community, humanitarian corridors, an air embargo and the arming of rebel fighters.”

The boycotting groups said the talks follow the “dangerous decisions of the Geneva conference, which aim to safeguard the regime, to create a dialogue with it and to form a unity government with the assassins of our children.”

“The Cairo conference aims to give a new chance to (U.N.-Arab League) envoy Kofi Annan to try again to convince Assad to implement his six-point plan. .. while forgetting that thousands have been martyred since the plan came into force,” they said.

No transition in the presence of Assad

Reema Flaihan, spokesperson of the Local Coordination Committees (LCC), had told Al Arabiya that the responsible committee has prepared a document for the transitional period, which has been signed by the different opposition members.

According to reports, the opposition figures will most probably reject any discussion of a national unity government in the presence of President Bashar al-Assad.

On the ground, as many as 77 people have been killed in violent crackdown on dissent across the country on Sunday.

The Syrian opposition on Sunday branded an international plan for a transition in strife-torn Syria a failure, as the death toll mounted.

World powers meeting in Geneva on Saturday agreed that the transition plan could include current regime members, but the West did not see any role for Assad in a new unity government.

Russia and China insisted that Syrians themselves must decide how the transition takes place, rather than allow others to dictate their fate.

Moscow and Beijing, which have twice blocked U.N. Security Council resolutions on Syria, signed up to the final agreement that did not make any explicit call for Assad to cede power.

Extra powers to Annan and his team

In a special interview with Al Arabiya, Iraq’s Foreign Minister Hoshiar Zebary said that the principles agreed on in Geneva will give extra powers to Annan and his team for the sake of finding a solution to the Syrian crisis.

Official Syrian media slammed the outcome, in rare agreement with the main opposition Syrian National Council (SNC) and the LCC which organize protests.

The SNC said it had expected “more serious and effective action” to emerge from the Geneva talks and reiterated that Assad must quit power.
“The Syrian people were hoping that the international community would adopt more serious and effective measures in dealing with the regime, whose bloody behavior has become clear,” the SNC said.

“The Syrian National Council affirms that no initiative can be accepted by the Syrian people unless it clearly calls on Bashar al-Assad and the tyrants around him to step down.”

It also charged that the Geneva plan “lacked a clear mechanism for action and a timetable” to hold the regime accountable, and warned that this could mean “more bloodshed.”

The LCC said the outcome showed once again a failure to adopt a common position.

It called the transition accord “just one version, different in form only, of the demands of Russian leaders allied to the Assad regime and who cover it militarily and politically in the face of international pressure.”

Iran, a strong ally of Assad, said the Geneva meeting was “unsuccessful” because Damascus and Tehran were not invited.

The United States and European nations reportedly opposed the presence of Iran, although U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan and U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon had wanted Tehran to attend.

The Geneva deal came despite initial pessimism over the talks amid deep divisions between the West and China and Russia on how to end the violence that the Observatory says has killed more than 15,800 since March 2011.

Syria’s neighbor Turkey, which attended the Geneva talks, scrambled fighter jets after Syrian helicopters flew close to its border, the army said on Sunday, hiking tensions following last month’s downing of a Turkish plane.

Six F-16 warplanes took off from airbases in south Turkey on Saturday after Syrian helicopters flew closer to the border than is normal, the army said, specifying there had been three incidents but no violation of Turkish airspace.

Sunday’s highest concentration of deaths was in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor.

Annan said on Saturday it was up to the Syrians to decide who they wanted in a unity government. But he added: “I would doubt that Syrians… would select people with blood on their hands to lead them.”

The United States and France both said it was clear there was no future role for Assad.


Iran says ready to upgrade Egypt ties to ambassadorial level

TEHRAN, July 2 (MNA) — Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said on Monday that Iran is ready to upgrade its relations with Egypt to the level of ambassador whenever the Arab country announces its readiness.
“Iran has always expressed its interest in upgrading political relations between Tehran and Cairo to the level of ambassador, and, whenever the Egyptian side is ready, the Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to enhance ties between the two countries.”

Salehi described current relations between Iran and Egypt as “good”, adding, “However, the Egyptian side has so far set some conditions for enhancing political relations with Iran, but the election of (Mohamed) Morsi to serve as the Egyptian president has opened a new chapter in the country’s foreign policy.”

“The Foreign Ministry of the Islamic Republic of Iran hopes that the prospects of Egypt’s foreign policy will become brighter and that the country’s new government will take more serious measures to have more comprehensive and deeper relations with the Muslim world,” he added.

The Iranian foreign minister also said, “The Egyptian people did a great job by electing Morsi to serve as the president and brought the revolution to fruition.”






The Middle East peace process is a ‘trick,’ says U.N. rights rapporteur

Richard Falk, a special U.N. rapporteur for human rights, said Palestinians in the occupied West Bank were offered no protection in Israeli law. (File photo)

Richard Falk, a special U.N. rapporteur for human rights, said Palestinians in the occupied West Bank were offered no protection in Israeli law. (File photo)


The U.N. pointman for Palestinian human rights launched a blistering attack on the international community Monday, accusing it of conspiring in Israeli settlement policies and branding the peace process a “trick.”

Richard Falk, the special U.N. rapporteur for human rights in the occupied territories, also took aim at the so-called Middle East Quartet’s peace envoy Tony Blair over his efforts in the region.

Falk, who spoke to reporters after addressing the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva, said Palestinians in the occupied West Bank were offered no protection in Israeli law and that their treatment was akin to apartheid.

“I think one has to begin to call the reality by a name,” he said, likening the “discriminatory dualistic legal system” in the West Bank to the former system in South Africa.

In his report to the council, Falk expressed his concern about Israel’s use of administrative detention, the expansion of settlements and violence by settlers.

Israel in March severed contacts with the council after the 47-member body said it would investigate settlements in the occupied territories, which are considered illegal under international law.

Peace talks between the two sides have been on hold since September 2010, with the Palestinians refusing to resume them without a moratorium on settlement building.

“The peace process is a trick rather than a way to find a solution to the problem,” Falk said.

He also criticized the work of the former British prime minister Tony Blair in the region.

“Tony Blair has not much to show for his 86 visits to the Middle East… (it is) an extension of the peace process which I regard as a failure because while time passes the settlement culture continues.”

“The international community is conspiring – maybe unwittingly – in a process that has no way of bringing justice to the people involved in this conflict,” he said of settlements.

At least 3,500 buildings were under construction in the West Bank in 2011, Falk reported, not including Israeli settlements in annexed east Jerusalem.

Such building on Palestinian land “more or less closes the book on the reality and feasibility” of a two-state solution to the conflict, Falk said.

“The credibility of the Human Rights Council is very much at stake if there is nothing that is done about the non-cooperation or non-compliance” by Israel with the council’s recommendations, he said.

“The language of censure doesn’t help the Palestinian people if there is no action.”

Settler violence against Palestinians was a new feature of the drive to occupy the Palestinian territories, especially around Hebron and Nablus, he added.

“Many people say the Israeli government is an extension of the settlers and I think that is an accurate description,” he said.

Falk said Palestinians were disillusioned by the international peace efforts and had resorted to extreme measures such as hunger strikes to raise awareness of abuses including illegal detention by Israel.

But such action was ignored in Western media, Falk said, sending “the unfortunate signal that only violent protests will be noticed internationally.”



‘Lazy Greeks myth, red herring in explaining crisis’

Published on Jul 1, 2012 by

Peter Mertens, leader of the Workers’ Party of Belgium, believes the Eurozone debt crisis is pushing member states towards “a very large number of social conflicts.” Mertens told RT that Europe faces three alternatives – saving the euro with “authoritarian measures by taking national sovereignty overnight to the European level”, breaking up into “two, three or four Europes”, or adopting a socialist model, “where banking system is public, where energy system is public, where there is democracy.” He believes Europe needs radical changes to its financial sector.

See transcript:

Big banks craft “living wills” in case they fail

 David Henry and Dave Clarke | Reuters

NEW YORK/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Five of the biggest banks in the United States are putting finishing touches on plans for going out of business as part of government-mandated contingency planning that could push them to untangle their complex operations.

The plans, known as living wills, are due to regulators no later than July 1 under provisions of the Dodd-Frank financial reform law designed to end too-big-to-fail bailouts by the government. The living wills could be as long as 4,000 pages.

Since the law allows regulators to go so far as to order a bank to divest subsidiaries if it cannot plan an orderly resolution in bankruptcy, the deadline is pushing even healthy institutions to start a multi-year process to untangle their complex global operations, according to industry consultants.

“The resolution process is now going to be part of the cost-benefit analysis on where banks will do business,” said Dan Ryan, leader of the financial services regulatory practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers in New York. “The complexity of the organizations will shrink.”

JPMorgan Chase & Co , Bank of America Corp , Citigroup Inc , Goldman Sachs & Co and Morgan Stanley are among those submitting the first liquidation scenarios to regulators at the Federal Reserve and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp, according to people familiar with the matter.

The five firms, which declined to discuss their plans for this story, have some of the biggest balance sheets, trading desks and derivatives portfolios of financial institutions in the United States.

Great Britain and other major countries are imposing similar requirements for “resolution” plans on their big banks, too.

The liquidation plans are coming amid renewed questions about the safety of big banks following JPMorgan’s stunning announcement last month that a trading debacle has cost it more than $2 billion – a sum far too small to endanger the bank, but shocking enough to bring back memories of the financial crisis.


Read Full Article Here


Iran to boost gasoline output by one million BPD

Published on Jul 2, 2012 by

As the US and European Union intensify sanctions on Iran’s energy industry, Iran continues to develop its oil facilities using domestic capability.

Press TV’s Amir Mehdi Kazemi reports from Tehran.

Amid a global crackdown against alleged black money in secret accounts of Swiss banks, their bankers are selling a new safe-haven idea to their rich clients from India and other countries — the high-value 1,000 franc notes to be stored in safe deposit boxes.

These boxes — kept inside the premises of Swiss banks — are also said to be being used to stash gold, diamond, paintings and art works among other valuables — apparently because of limited risk of catching the preying eyes of foreign governments having signed banking information exchange treaties with Switzerland.

According to industry sources, bankers are telling their rich clients that Switzerland’s tax and information exchange treaties with India and other countries are mostly limited to funds in customers’ savings, deposit and investment accounts, and do not apply to the safe deposit boxes.

As a result, the demand has soared to record high levels for the safe deposit boxes and the 1,000 Swiss franc banknotes in Switzerland, as rich of the world are rushing to get them.

As per the data available with Switzerland’s central bank SNB (Swiss National Bank), the thousand-franc notes now account for 60 per cent of total value of all Swiss banknotes in circulation, up from about 50 per cent a year ago.

Replying to PTI queries, SNB confirmed that there was a significant surge in demand for thousand-franc notes and admitted that this could be due to a trend to store the money and a higher demand was being noticed from abroad for these high-value currency notes.

SNB did not reply to specific queries about demand from India and said that it did not have any data on deposit boxes.

Just one thousand-franc banknote is worth about Rs 60,000 in Indian currency, making it easier to store large amount of money in form of these notes

‘Sanctions only hurting EU, Iran cashing in on exemptions’

Published on Jul 2, 2012 by

The EU embargo of Iranian oil is now in place, along with fresh U.S. sanctions against countries dealing with Tehran. The measures are aimed at pressurizing Iran to curb its nuclear programme. The Islamic Republic says however that it’s been stockpiling money as a buffer and that selling oil remains no problem – thanks to America exempting some countries from penalties – including China and Singapore. Author and journalist Afshin Rattansi says the sanctions are unlikely to have the desired effect.


Wars and Rumors of War

Economy and drugs dominate Mexico poll

Published on Jul 1, 2012 by

Two of the main issues expected to dominate Mexico’s presidential election on Sunday are the economy and the country’s “War on Drugs”.

Mexico’s economy is growing at a rate of four per cent, but 20 million youths are out of school and out of work.

Meanwhile, more than 50,000 people have been killed since December 2006, in the fight against drug gangs and organised crime.

Al Jazeera’s Adam Raney reports from Ciudad Juárez.

Armed Angels: Children dragged into grown-up war in Syria

Published on Jul 1, 2012 by

The urgency for international agreement on Syria is underlined by the growing daily violence there. As Maria Finoshina reports, even the youngest in the country are being dragged into the conflict.

Missiles, bombs, drones & battleships: London ready for Olympics?

Published on Jul 1, 2012 by

High-tech battleships and missiles are on stand-by to protect London during the upcoming Olympics. Some are concerned it looks more like war games than a sporting event. But as RT’s Laura Smith explains, heavy weaponry may not be enough to tackle the real threat.

‘Removing Assad will add to Syria chaos’

Published on Jul 1, 2012 by

Russia and China want the Syrian people to resolve the Syrian issue while the US and its allies who are causing the bloodshed is firm about dictating terms.

Interview with James Fetzer, professor and philosopher, Madison.

Syrian No-go: Rebels won’t talk until Assad out

Published on Jul 2, 2012 by

Syria’s rebels have rebuffed the latest plan for peace. World powers pushed for a unity government at talks in Geneva at the weekend – but the opposition insists Assad has to go. The deal was forged to try and end the drawn-out conflict, which the UN says has claimed more than 10-thousand lives. RT’s Maria Finoshina reports.

UN Rights chief arms flow increasing into Syria

Published on Jul 2, 2012 by

Navi Pillay, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, tells Al Jazeera that violence in Syria is being fuelled by the increasing flow of weapons to both the sides.


Assad to Kremlin: I can finish the revolt in two months, replaces army chiefs


Turkish military convoy heading for Syrian border

In a phone call to the Kremlin Sunday, July 1, Syrian President Bashar Assad said he needed just two months to finish off the revolt against his regime. “My new military tactics are working,” he said in a secret video-conference with Russian intelligence and foreign ministry officials who shape Moscow’s policy on Syria.

Reporting this exclusively, debkafile’s intelligence sources also register the fleeting life span of the new plan for ending the Syrian war which UN envoy Kofi Annan announced had been agreed at a multinational Action Group meeting in Geneva on Saturday, June 30. Within 24 hours, the principle of a national unity transitional government based on “mutual consent” was rejected by the regime and the Turkish-based opposition leaders alike, as the violence went into another month.

On the first day of July, 91 people were reported killed in the escalating Syrian violence after a record 4,000 in June.
The new military tactics to which Assad referred are disclosed here:
1.  The sweeping removal of most of the veteran Syrian army commanders who led the 16-month bloody assault on regime opponents and rebels. They were sent home with full pay to make way for a new set of younger commanders, most of them drawn from the brutal Alawite Shabiha militia, which is the ruling family’s primary arm against its enemies.
The regular commanders had shown signs of fatigue and doubts about their ability to win Assad’s war. Their will to fight on was being badly sapped by the mounting numbers officers and men going over to the opposition camp in June.
One of the tasks set the new commanders is to stem the rate of defections.
To keep the veteran commanders from joining the renegades and reduce their susceptibility to hostile penetration, the officers were not sacked but retired on full pension plus all the perks of office, including official cars.
2.  But a higher, unthinkable level of violence is the key to Assad’s “new tactics.” He has armed the new military chiefs with extra fire power – additional tank and artillery units, air force bombers and attack helicopters – for smashing pockets of resistance and unlimited permission to use it. Already the level of live fire used against the rebels has risen to an even more unthinkable level which explains the sharp escalation of deaths to an average of 120 per day.
On the Syrian-Turkish border, tensions continue to mount. Monday morning, Turkey was still pumping large-scale strength including tanks, antiaircraft and antitank guns, artillery, surface missiles and combat helicopters to the border region.
Saturday, half a dozen Turkish jets were scrambled to meet Syria helicopters approaching their common border.
In Tehran, Brig. Gen. Amir-Ali Hajizadeh, commander of Iran’s IRGC Aerospace Division, warned Ankara that if its troops ventured onto Syrian soil, their bases of departure would be destroyed. The threat was made during Hajizadeh’s announcement of a three-day missile exercise starting Monday in response to the European oil embargo.  He reported that long-, medium- and short-range missiles would target “simulations of foreign bases in the northern Semnan Desert,” without mentioning any specific nation except Turkey.


Bulgaria : No Turkey-Syria War Looming, NATO Chief Says (Sofia NewsAgency)

Bulgaria: No Turkey-Syria War Looming, NATO Chief Says
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen of Denmark gives his monthly press briefing in Brussels, in Brussels, Belgium, 02 July 2012. EPA/BGNES

NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen has played down the risk of a military confrontation between Turkey and Syria.

Rasmussen also said Ankara was justified in beefing up its defenses along the Syrian border, as cited by international media.

Turkey, a key NATO member, has strengthened its troop presence and air defenses along its southern border after Syria shot down one of its jets on June 22, heightening tensions between the neighbors caused by an uprising against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Asked if he was concerned about Turkey‘s military buildup and whether there was a risk it could lead to a confrontation with Syria, Rasmussen said told a news conference:

“I commend Turkey for having shown restraint despite the very tragic aircraft incident,” Rasmussen told a news conference in Brussels on Monday.

“I find it quite normal that Turkey takes necessary steps to protect its population and its territory,” he said.

He added NATO had received no request from Turkey to deploy AWACS surveillance planes or other military equipment.

At an emergency meeting in Brussels last week, NATO allies condemned Syria‘s shooting down of the Turkish military plane, but stopped short of threatening a military response.

Syria says it shot down the Turkish jet in self-defense and that it was brought down in Syrian air space. Turkey says the jet accidentally violated Syrian air space for a few minutes but was brought down in international air space.

Turkey scrambled six F-16 fighter jets in three separate incidents responding to Syrian military helicopters approaching the border on Sunday, its armed forces command said on Monday.

Meanwhile, Arab states and Turkey urged Syria‘s divided opposition on Monday to unite and form a credible alternative to the government of President Bashar al-Assad, but rifts swiftly emerged at talks in Cairo.

The unity calls were made at the opening of a two-day meeting organized by the Arab League to try to rally Syria‘s opposition, which has been beset by in-fighting that diplomats say have made it tougher for the world to respond to the crisis.

Sixteen months into an uprising against Assad, squabbling among the opposition makes it less likely to be able to win international recognition or to get more than half-hearted foreign support.

“It is not acceptable to waste this opportunity in any way. The sacrifices of the Syrian people are bigger than us all and more precious than any differences or individual and party interests,” Arab League Secretary-General Nabil Elaraby said, addressing the roughly 200 Syrian politicians and activists.



Articles of Interest

Inside Story – Sudan: Breaking the barrier of fear

Published on Jul 1, 2012 by

As the Sudanese government intensifies its crackdown on anti-government protests that have been going on for almost two weeks, activists have called for a massive demonstration against the government’s austerity measures.
The protesters defiantly dubbed their anti-government rallies “licking elbows” after officials issued a statement telling people who are dissatisfied with the government to do just that.

The protests that were sparked by austerity measures have spread from the capital Khartoum to other areas of the country, with people now openly calling for an end to the 23-year-old rule of Omar al-Bashir, Sudan’s president.

Fast and Furious & The 2nd Amendment

The War On Drugs


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Defiant Eric Holder tells Congress to stuff its contempt citation

By Capitol Hill Blue

Attorney General Eric Holder (J. Scott Applewhite/AP)

A defiant Attorney General Eric Holder lashed out at House Republicans over a contempt of Congress citation from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, calling the 23-17 party-line vote “an extraordinary, unprecedented and entirely unnecessary action, intended to provoke an avoidable conflict between Congress and the Executive Branch.”

Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, angry over Holder’s refusal to turn over requested documents on the Justice Department‘s failed “Fast and Furious” gun-running scheme and President Barack Obama’s use of executive privilege to seal the documents, forced the vote.

Said Holder in a statement released by his office:

This divisive action does not help us fix the problems that led to this operation or previous ones and it does nothing to make any of our law enforcement agents safer.  It’s an election-year tactic intended to distract attention — and, as a result — has deflected critical resources from fulfilling what remains my top priority at the Department of Justice: Protecting the American people.

“Fast and Furious” was supposed to help Holder’s department track the flow of guns from the United States to drug cartels in Mexico but most of the arms went missing and two ended up at the crime scene where Customs and Border Control agent Brian Terry was murdered.

Said Holder:

From the beginning, Chairman Issa and certain members of the Committee have made unsubstantiated allegations first, then scrambled for facts to try to justify them later.

That might make for good political theater, but it does little to uncover the truth or address the problems associated with this operation and prior ones dating back to the previous Administration.

Repbublicans contend Holder lied to the committee and has withheld evidence.  House Speaker John Boehner said Wednesday the full house will vote on the contempt citation next week “unless the Attorney General re-evaluates his choices.:

Holder’s response:  Not in their lifetime.

Vote on Holder contempt citation only the beginning

Conservative Examiner


The U.S. House of Representatives announced today that a date has been set for a vote on a contempt of Congress citation against Attorney General Eric Holder for his failure to turn over subpoenaed documents related to the Fast and Furious scandal.

The vote has been set for June 20.

House Speaker John Boehner stated,

The Justice Department is out of excuses. Either the Justice Department turns over the information requested, or Congress will have no choice but to move forward with holding the Attorney General in contempt for obstructing an ongoing investigation.

Now that Speaker Boehner is behind the effort to cite Holder for contempt, the measure is expected to have smooth sailing in the initial vote in the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. The citation should also easily pass a vote in the full House, where 31 Democrats have already pledged to join the Republican majority in voting for holding the Attorney General in contempt.