Sunday, October 19, 2014

The West is paying dearly for cozying up to Russia over 25 years - Washington Post | David Cameron and Vladimir Putin clash over Ukraine at EU-Asian summit in Milan

The West is paying dearly for cozying up to Russia over 25 years - Washington Post




Митрополит Волоколамский Иларион встретился в Ватикане с Папой Римским Франциском

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Cобеседники обсудили драматическую ситуацию на Украине. В рамках аудиенции, длившейся около часа, были также подняты темы трагического положения христианского населения Ближнего Востока и различных аспектов православно-католического взаимодействия.

Роскомнадзор пригрозил блокировкой сайту журнала Maxim за статью о взятках

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В руководстве редакции интернет-ресурса говорят, что удалили вызвавшую недовольство чиновников статью еще летом. Это произошло после того, как прокуратура Бурятии обратилась в суд Улан-Удэ с требованием заблокировать доступ к тексту про взятки. Суд в итоге встал на сторону прокуратуры.

"Удар по ГРУ": в Польше арестовали двух "российских шпионов"

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Обоих суд постановил заключить под стражу сроком на три месяца. Известно, что один из подозреваемых - подполковник вооруженных сил Польши, другой - адвокат из Варшавы. Власти официально подтвердили, что речь идет о шпионаже в пользу Российской Федерации. 

Правозащитницу 73 лет, расследовавшую гибель военных РФ на Украине, обвинили в мошенничестве и посадили в СИЗО

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По словам правозащитников, в Комитете солдатских матерей города Буденновска и Буденновского района прошел обыск. Одновременно с этим силовики задержали и отправили в СИЗО руководителя организации Людмилу Богатенкову, которая является экспертом постоянной комиссии по военно-гражданским отношениям СПЧ. 

US tanks arrive in Latvia to ward off ‘perceived’ Russian threat

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US tanks have arrived in Latvia as NATO flexes its muscles in an apparent show of strength towards Moscow. The machines are being deployed across the Baltic States and Poland over the next two weeks and will be used for training exercises.
The 1st Cavalry Division, based at Fort Hood in Texas, was deployed in Adazi, not far from the Latvian capital of Riga. 150 soldiers used five M1A2 Abrams tanks, as well as 11 Bradley Fighting Vehicles in a training demonstration.
The commander of the 1st Brigade of the 1st Cavalry Division, John Di Giambattista said, “This is more than just a training mission. This is more than just a trip across the Atlantic; this is more than a multinational training exercise. This is how we demonstrate our nations’ commitment to reassure our NATO allies,” Reuters reports
Latvians, as well as their Baltic neighbors and Poland have welcomed the deployment of the troops and tanks as a deterrent to the perceived threat of Russia. This is one of the largest placements of US military forces into part of the former Soviet Union.
Martins Liberts, who is the Commander of the Latvian Infantry Brigade, said that it was good for his country’s army to work with up to date military equipment.
“To be honest, since independence, we have not had the chance to work with tanks as allies, but we will do that now. It will be a unique experience,” he said, according to Reuters.
The Abrams M1A2 is an upgrade of the Abram M1A1, which was used in combat during the 1991 Gulf War. The Abrams are armed with a M256A1 120mm smooth bore cannon, while they also feature one M240 7.62mm machine gun.The combat force consists of around 700 troops and 20 tanks.
“The purpose is to be a very visible demonstration of commitment to our allies. We may take slightly longer to deploy than lighter forces, but there’s nothing like a tank if you really want to achieve effect,” said Captain John Farmer, public affairs officer for Ironhorse, as the 1st Cavalry Division is otherwise known in early October, before the deployment was made.
The 1st Cavalry Division will replace a number of lightly armed US paratroopers, who were deployed in March, following a referendum in Crimea, where local residents elected to cede from Ukraine and saw the peninsula becoming part of Russia.
The 1st Cavalry Division has a long history, having been formed in 1921. Since then the division fought in the Second World War, as well as subsequently in Korea and Vietnam. In the 21st Century, the unit has been involved in tours to Iraq and Afghanistan. The division has also hit the big screen, having appeared in the American Vietnam War epic, Apocalypse Now.
These are not the first tanks to have been deployed in Europe since the end of the Cold War. In January this year, 29 Abrams M1A2 tanks were sent to Germany to replace older versions of the same military vehicles.
The Abrams tanks will join 33 M2A3 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles as well as numerous other heavy support vehicles that will be positioned at Grafenwohr, which is around 220 kilometers north of Munich and used for training exercises.
The deployment of the 1st Cavalry Division in Latvia is a direct result of an agreement for creating a rapid reaction force in Eastern Europe, following the NATO summit in the UK in September.
“This is a demonstration of our solidarity and resolve,” said former NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen at the summit in Cardiff in early September. “Should you even think of attacking one ally, you will be facing the whole alliance,” the former Danish Prime Minister added.
The Baltic States have been among the most vocal advocates of NATO strengthening in the region, but the organization is bound by a 1997 agreement with Russia, which bars it from placing permanent bases in Lithuania, Latvia or Estonia. This can be circumvented by staging constant rotations of “exercises” that can in practice amount to the same thing.
        
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Ukraine says it's agreed interim gas price with Russia

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KIEV (Reuters) - Ukraine's and Russia's leaders have reached a preliminary agreement on a price for gas supplies this winter but Kiev may need international help to pay, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said on Saturday.






  
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Americans 'can't give in to hysteria or fear' over Ebola -Obama - Toronto Sun

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Toronto Sun

Americans 'can't give in to hysteria or fear' over Ebola -Obama
Toronto Sun
Related Stories. 'I have Ebola' joke disrupts US Airways flight · Canada 'well-prepared' for Ebola, health officials say · What you need to know about Ebola · Isolated patient's blood sent to national lab for Ebola tests · Canada pulls lab team working on Ebola ...

and more »

'Gay-hating' Brazilian serial killer picked up a 16-year-old boy for sex but was overwhelmed by 'rage' and murdered him instead

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Sixteen-year-old Diego Mendes had been missing since 2011. Now serial killer Tiago Rocha, 26, tells police in Brazil that the boy was the first of his 39 victims, and he at first picked him up for sex.

Battle Over Ebola Travel Ban: Health Officials Call It a Big Mistake - NBCNews.com

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Fox News

Battle Over Ebola Travel Ban: Health Officials Call It a Big Mistake
NBCNews.com
There are reasons the U.S. hasn't enacted a travel ban on countries where Ebola has broken out: It wouldn't work and could actually make things worse, health officials say. Still, that's done little to quell the calls for a ban. On Friday, Texas Gov. Rick Perry ...
Travel ban could stop Ebola virus from spreading: Obama criticsNew York Post 
Companies in Africa Are Fighting Ebola Travel BanBusinessweek
Fast Focus: 'Are you worried about and Ebola outbreak in the US?' It's already hereMid Columbia Tri City Herald
Huffington Post-New York Daily News-Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
all 2,239 news articles »

US Ebola Fears Spread Faster Than Virus

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For Americans, Ebola started out as a disease in a far away continent, but then a man from Liberia died from Ebola in a Dallas hospital, and things changed. Ebola was on American soil. Fears heightened, and they spiked even more when two nurses who treated that Ebola patient contracted the disease. These new cases have prompted an epidemic of fear.  One of the nurses, Nina Pham, was transferred from a Dallas hospital to the clinical studies unit at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland.  Efforts to allay fears A top official there, Dr. Anthony Fauci, sought to allay fears at a news conference Friday morning. "We fully intend to have this patient walk out of this hospital. And we intend to do everything we can to make that happen," Fauci said. The other nurse, Amber Vinson, has been moved to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. Despite assurances from America's top doctors, more than 80 percent of Americans believe Ebola can be spread by many ways, including by sneezing and coughing. Those are the results of a new poll by Harvard University. Infectious disease experts say the virus can only be spread by contact with bodily fluids from someone who has the disease.  The poll also shows that more than half of adults are concerned that there will be a large outbreak of Ebola inside the U.S. within the next 12 months.Health-care workers concerned Nurses and doctors are also raising their concerns. Nurses' groups say they haven't been trained to care for Ebola patients and that they don't have proper equipment to protect them from catching the virus. Randi Weingarten heads one of the nurses unions. "Frontline providers, who are key to containing Ebola, must have a voice and be involved in the development and implementation of plans," Weingarten said. On Saturday, President Barack Obama used his weekly address to tell Americans keep the situation in perspective and not to give in to Ebola "hysteria or fear." Many Americans are calling for a ban on travel to the U.S. from West African nations affected by Ebola until the virus is under control. But that would prevent the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from screening and tracking these visitors. That's what CDC head Dr. Thomas Frieden, told a congressional hearing on Thursday.   "Borders can be porous. We won't be able to check them for fever when they leave. We won't be able to check them for fever when they arrive. When they arrive we wouldn't be able to impose quarantine," Frieden told members of a House subcommittee. Still, a plane that one of the infected nurses flew on is now being disinfected and schools in Ohio and Texas closed their doors because some students or staff shared an airplane with the nurse, unnecessary procedures prompted by fear because experts say you can only get Ebola from a sick person's bodily fluids.

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Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

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Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the organization whyIslam.org, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino.  And according to Latino American Dawah Organization (LADO), a group that promotes Latino conversions, a little more than half of new converts are female.  Greisa Torres arrived in Miami four years ago from Cuba. While she felt at home in the Florida city, where two out of the three residents are Hispanic, Torres says she lost her identity in the move and found it in the Prophet Muhammad.  Converted during pregnancy While she was pregnant with her second son, Mahdi, Torres converted to Islam. “It was very hard for me because we do not have family here, just my husband and my kids. On this day, my baby -- Mahdi -- he was going to be born. That is why I convert to Islam because I was scared," Torres says. According to some estimates, there are 3,000 Hispanic Muslims in Miami and more than 40,000 nationwide. Stephanie Londono has a master's degree from Florida International University and has published a study about religious conversions by Latinas. Londono says some women turn to Islam because they are repelled by Western values of success -- as measured by careers, schooling or wealth.  She says they are more comfortable with traditional gender roles. On any Friday afternoon, juma prayers are held at Masjid Miami Gardens  -- the local Islamic mosque. The men listen to the Imam speak downstairs. The women are separated and watch upstairs, through a glass barrier at the front or on a monitor mounted in the upper corner of the expansive carpeted room. Gives them guidance Londono says her research found that some people might view Islam as giving women less freedom, but the converting Latinas see it as a positive change. “It defines their world on a clear grid of what’s permitted or 'halal,' and what’s prohibited which is 'haram.' So they know exactly where they stand," Londono says. "So the Koran becomes this guidebook that tells you exactly what to wear, what to eat, how to wash, how to behave, when to pray.” While feminist Muslims might avoid the hijab, many Latinas embrace it. Londono says they purposely speak Spanish while wearing the scarf to take a stand as a representative of Islam. Torres agrees, saying, “When people see you with the hijab, they respect you first. Second, it’s the emotion you feel because you are different. You believe in something. It’s amazing.” Breaking stereotypes Also, going out in public with the hijab breaks traditional stereotypes that all Arabs are Muslim and all Hispanics are Catholic. In her transition from Jesus to Muhammed, Torres also discovered similarities in the cultures, such as about 4,000 Spanish words have their roots in Arabic -- virtually all words starting with the letters “a-l.” This dates back to the Moorish occupation of Spain in the Middle Ages. Torres finds that useful, because some of what she's learning about Islam is taught in Arabic.

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Conflict Uncovers a Ukrainian Identity Crisis Over Deep Russian Roots - New York Times

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ABC News

Conflict Uncovers a Ukrainian Identity Crisis Over Deep Russian Roots
New York Times
KIEV, Ukraine — Ukrainians have long endured a tormented relationship with the novelist Mikhail Bulgakov — a native son who extolled this city's beauty even while mocking the very idea of a Ukraine independent from Russia. “We call him the Great Kiev ... 
Soldiers' Rights Activist Jailed in RussiaABC News
Russian 'Soldiers' Mothers' Activist DetainedRadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty

all 71 news articles »
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Catholic bishops block new guidelines of openness toward gay people

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Catholic bishops have scrapped a proposed new policy of openness toward gay people in a sign of deep divisions at the end of a two-week meeting sought by Pope Francis.

Russian Financial Official Warns Of Threats To Reserve Fund

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A top Russian financial official says the country's Reserve Fund could be depleted if the current "negative tendencies" affecting the economy continue in 2015.

Ukraine Details Interim Gas Deal with Russia

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Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko says a preliminary energy deal reached with Russia will require Kyiv to pay $385 per cubic meter of natural gas through the winter months. Poroshenko disclosed details of the deal to Ukraine media on Saturday. The rate is nearly $100 less than Moscow was charging Ukraine in June, when it stopped all deliveries to its neighbor. However, the Ukraine leader said the agreement — ratified Friday at a Russia-Europe summit — is only in place until...

Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Dr Peter Piot, the scientist who co-discovered the Ebola virus, has stated that the present outbreak is not following its usual linear patterns as mapped out in previous outbreaks. This time the virus is "hopping" all over the West African epidemic region.[44] Furthermore, past epidemics have occurred in remote regions, but this outbreak has spread to large urban areas, which has increased the number of contacts an infected person may have and made transmission harder to track and break.[20]

Catholic synod: Pope Francis suffers setback on gays - BBC News

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BBC News

Catholic synod: Pope Francis suffers setback on gays
BBC News
Pope Francis has suffered a setback as proposals for wider acceptance of gay people failed to win a two-thirds majority at a Catholic Church synod. A draft issued half-way through the meeting of senior clerics had called for greater openness towards ...
Catholic Church scraps welcome to gays in family documentCBC.ca
Catholic bishops scrap landmark welcome to gays in sign of splitFox News
Catholic bishops scrap watered-down welcome to gays in document in sign of ...Washington Post
NPR (blog) -CTV News
all 461 news articles »

ebola bacteriological weapon - Google Search

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  • Ebola, the African Union and Bioeconomic Warfare ...

    <a href="http://www.counterpunch.org/.../" rel="nofollow">www.counterpunch.org/.../</a>ebola-the-african-union-and-bioeconomic-wa...
    Oct 10, 2014 - As the Ebola outbreak rages, and there are projections of more than 1.4 .... and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons  ...
  • the expert, would not work as a bacteriological weapon but ...

    scccdesign.com/ebola-the-expert-would-not-work-as-a-bacteriological-w...
    Rome, September 19. (Reuters Health)-Ebola is, from a strategic perspective, a bad agent for biological warfare. In fact, the virus cannot be spread easily and in ...
  • A History of Biological Warfare from 300 B.C.E. to the Present

    <a href="https://www.aarc.org/resources/biological/history.asp" rel="nofollow">https://www.aarc.org/resources/biological/history.asp</a>
    This poison would certainly contain the bacteria of gangrene and tetanus ..... botulinum and had even attempted to obtain the Ebola virus for a weapon.28.
  • 10 Scariest Bioweapons | Stuff to Blow Your Mind

    <a href="http://www.stufftoblowyourmind.com/blog/list/10-scariest-bio" rel="nofollow">www.stufftoblowyourmind.com/blog/list/10-scariest-bio</a>weapons/
    Apr 4, 2013 - Along the way, we've even weaponized some of nature's most formidable viral,bacterial and fungal foes. The use of biological weapons,  ...
  • Soviet biological weapons program - Wikipedia, the free ...

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_biological_weapons_program
    The Soviet Union began a biological weapons program in the 1920s. .... microbial strains; Project Factor, creation of microbial weapons with new properties of  ...
  • Category:Biological weapons - Wikipedia, the free ...

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Biological_weapons
    Wikimedia Commons has media related to Biological weapons. ... Pages in category "Biologicalweapons". The following 63 pages are in ... Z. Zaire ebolavirus  ...
  • The Basics of Chemical and Biological Weapons ... - Science

    science.howstuffworks.com/biochem-war2.htm
    A biological weapon uses a bacteria or virus, or in some cases toxins that come directly frombacteria, ... In both books, the source of infection is the Ebola virus.
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    Russian Military Intelligence Coordinating Syrian-Iranian Attacks on Rebels, Spying on Israel

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    The Syrian rebels, in what appears to be a joint operation between several Free Syrian Army (FSA) brigades, have captured an important Syrian Army installation overlooking to town of Al Harra (or Tal Harra), in Daraa province (map). The capture of the base would be significant news in and of itself. The base towers above Al Harra, a town situated between Daraa — an area where moderate rebels have been more prominent than in northern Syria— and Damascus, the embattled capital where the Assad regime has been on the advance. The base is also very close to the Golan Heights, the nearby border of which is marked by the red box in the map below.
    Al Harra near Golan
    This area is a key focus in the battle for control of southwestern Syria. In the last month the regime has made significant advances just north of here, outside of Damascus, but has lost more control in Daraa province. Between the end of September and the start of October, the Assad regime’s attempts to recapture Deir al-Adas, less than 10 miles to the northeast of Al Harra, were rebuffed by rebels. During the incident, the regime reportedly used chlorine gas to weaken the rebels, but ultimately even those efforts were unsuccessful and the Syrian Army pulled its forces further north. Assad’s typical targets for this level of aggression, the use of chemical weapons, are massively strategic areas around Damascus and Aleppo, so the fact that chlorine was reportedly used as part of the assault on Deir al-Adas demonstrates the importance of this region. The road between Daraa and Damascus is one of the only roads that connects the capital to the south. If the regime loses control of this towns along the road they will lose control of southern Syria. But even more worrying for the regime, that will create a direct route between Jordan, where the U.S. has been arming and training moderate rebels off and on for years, and Damascus.
    The Assad regime is losing ground in this territory. In this map below, Al Harra is approximately in the center:
    But the fall of this base is making headlines for a different reason. Syrian rebels who overran the base have found evidence that the Syrian Army was not alone on the top of the hill. The rebels say that their evidence proves that Russian military intelligence officers were also operating on the base, and appear to have left some of the equipment — and pictures — behind. A video tour of the facility, posted on Youtube (below, though here’s a copy) shows that inside the base there is evidence of the presence of Russian “Spetsnaz,” special forces units who were members of the radio electronic intelligence agency of Russia’s GRU (Main Intelligence Directorate, the Russian military’s chief foreign intelligence unit).
    The video shows a wall adorned with pictures, many of them labeled in both Russian and Arabic, which appear to show a Russian GRU SIGINT (Signals Intelligence) unit operating on the base. The Oryx Blog has posted and analyzed a dozen screenshots from the video, and besides a minor translation issue (which we’ll point out below) the post explains the significance of the pictures.
    On the 5th of October 2014, the Free Syrian Army captured the Центр С or المركز س ‘Center C or Center S’ SIGINT (Signals Intelligence) facility (logo on top) jointly operated by the Russian Osnaz GRU radio electronic intelligence agency (logo on the right) and one of the Syrian Intelligence Agencies (logo on the left). Situated near Al Hara, the facility was of vital importance for the Assad regime as it was responsible for recording and decrypting radio communications from every rebel group operating inside Syria, making it likely the Russian-gathered information at this facility was at least partially responsible for the series of killings of rebel leaders by airstrikes.
    Translation from [the three minute and 8 second mark of the video - The Interpreter]; ”A directive issued by the surveillance office on May 31 to eavesdrop and record all radio communications of the terrorist groups, directive signed by brigadier-general Nazir Fuddah, commander of the first center.”
    The base appears to have been called “Center S,” not “Center C,” where the “S” could possibly stand for “Syria.” “Osnaz ” is a term that is sometimes used to describe small “Spetsnaz” teams, Russian military special forces units which typically operate in secret. The logos in question are in this screenshot below:
    Russian spetsnaz logos in Al Harra Syria base
    According to one of the pictures on the wall, the base may have been visited by a very-high ranking member of the Russian military:
    Various photos on the wall inside the captured facility once again emphasise the Russian involvement in the Middle East, showing even a map of Israeli Armed Forces bases and units. Other photos detail Russian personnel working at and running the center, as well as highlight a visit by Kudelina L.K., Counselor to the Minister of Defence of Russian Federation.
    Lyubov Kudelina, Deputy Minister of Defence for Financial-Economic Work, is a female, which matches the screenshot from the video below.
    Obviously, the screen-capture from the video is not high quality so no definitive identification can be made, but the woman in blue does strongly resemble official pictures of Lyubov Kondratyevna Kudelina:
    CEP20090303351001009
    According to Oryx, the man speaking in the video says another picture is labeled “‘Рабочий визит начальника ГУ МВС ВС РФ” – Visit by the chief of the Main Directorate of International Military Cooperation of the Armed Forces of Russian Federation.” While the name of this person is never mentioned in the caption of the picture on the wall, Sergey Koshelev is the chief of the Main Directorate of International Military Cooperation. Koshelev appears to be a grey-headed older man, and the man in the photo appears to have black hair, but since the picture is low quality and doesn’t show the Russian official from the front, it’s hard to analyze.
    The other pictures appear to show Russian soldiers working at the base with Syrian intelligence officers. There are several references to the collection of radio intelligence, and videos of the exterior of the base show large antennas and electronic receivers which could be used to monitor communications:
    Russian Coordination with IRGC and Assad
    If Russian intelligence operatives are running operations anywhere on Syria’s front lines, the area between Daraa and Damascus might be exactly where we would expect to find them, since this is an area where Assad’s allies have helped him defend in the past.
    By the end of 2012 large parts of the Syrian Army had defected to the rebels who had established strongholds across northern Syria and had taken control of large parts of Syria’s second largest city, Aleppo. The regime had gone many months without even a hint of a victory on the battlefield. It became clear to many that there were very few things keeping the Assad regime afloat: air power supplied and maintained by Russia, tanks supplied by Russia, high ground defended by military bases and Russian-made artillery, and oil and money supplied by Moscow and Tehran.
    To counter this, (as Michael Weiss, The Interpreter’s editor-in-chief, and I worked together to uncover), in the last few months of 2012 the United States began an effort to train and arm moderate Syrian rebels in Daraa province. Within months those insurgents, armed with Croatian anti-tank weapons, were winning battles and capturing large amounts of territory between the Jordanian border and the Syria’s capital city. The Obama administration had two modest objectives. First, force Assad to the negotiating table by weakening his firepower and technological advantages — and drain support from his key allies Russia and Iran. Second, because U.S. ally Jordan was absorbing an unsustainable amount of Syrian refugees, while also fending off attempts by radical Islamists in the Hashemite kingdom to migrate into Syria to join the rebellion, allowing the moderate rebels breathing space in Daraa would create a de facto buffer zone between Syria and Jordan.
    However, as the rebels began to make significant gains around Damascus they began to complain about a lack of arms and ammunition. Clearly Washington, afraid that the rebels might actually sack Damascus or become too powerful to want to negotiate, cut the supply of weapons. What followed was months of stalemate around the capital.
    The strategy did result, however, in changing Assad’s “calculus,” but not in the way the Obama administration had intended. By early 2013, with the regime losing ground, Iran significantly increased its military intervention in Syria, and the focus was the area around Damascus. In his highly regarded profile of IRGC-Quds Force Commander Qassem Suleimani, who had taken personal control of Assad’s anti-insurgency operations, the New Yorker’s Dexter Filkins noted:
    Late last year [2012], Western officials began to notice a sharp increase in Iranian supply flights into the Damascus airport. Instead of a handful a week, planes were coming every day, carrying weapons and ammunition—“tons of it,” the Middle Eastern security official told me—along with officers from the Quds Force. According to American officials, the officers coördinated attacks, trained militias, and set up an elaborate system to monitor rebel communications. They also forced the various branches of Assad’s security services—designed to spy on one another—to work together. The Middle Eastern security official said that the number of Quds Force operatives, along with the Iraqi Shiite militiamen they brought with them, reached into the thousands. “They’re spread out across the entire country,” he told me.
    A turning point came in April, after rebels captured the Syrian town of Qusayr, near the Lebanese border. To retake the town, Suleimani called on Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah’s leader, to send in more than two thousand fighters. It wasn’t a difficult sell. Qusayr sits at the entrance to the Bekaa Valley, the main conduit for missiles and other matériel to Hezbollah; if it was closed, Hezbollah would find it difficult to survive. Suleimani and Nasrallah are old friends, having coöperated for years in Lebanon and in the many places around the world where Hezbollah operatives have performed terrorist missions at the Iranians’ behest. According to Will Fulton, an Iran expert at the American Enterprise Institute, Hezbollah fighters encircled Qusayr, cutting off the roads, then moved in. Dozens of them were killed, as were at least eight Iranian officers. On June 5th, the town fell. “The whole operation was orchestrated by Suleimani,” [John Maguire, a former C.I.A. officer], who is still active in the region, said. “It was a great victory for him.”
    The next towns to fall to the joint Hezbollah-Assad fighters were key suburbs of Damascus, freeing up Assad’s soldiers to take their fight further south,  reversing many of the gains and sapping the momentum of the FSA coalition in Daraa. Once Damascus and Daraa were more secure, Hezbollah and Assad began to focus on Homs, to the north of the capital. The once ineffective Syrian Army, which had been on its back foot, had regained the upper hand thanks to command and control from Iran and foreign fighters from Lebanon.
    Rebels Slated To Fight ISIS Attacked By Assad Near Russian SIGNIT Base
    A key part of the Obama administration’s new strategy to combat the terrorist group ISIS is to train and supply moderate Syrian rebels who are willing to fight Islamic radicals like the Islamic State. But this wave of training is just the largest in a series of similar efforts, particularly noteworthy being the efforts in late 2012 and 2013 mentioned above. While there is debate about where these rebels will be trained — Saudi Arabia is a probably destination— the CIA already has a well-known training camp north of Amman, Jordan, and extensive contacts among FSA fighters in the south.  While efforts to arm and train rebels may utilize similar connections in Turkey, it stands to reason that U.S. support for the southern rebels will also increase. As such, the base at Al Harra may have been on the front lines of Assad’s efforts to monitor and combat these U.S.-backed rebel groups.
    Russian Spetsnaz and Mercenaries Are Already in Syria
    It should not be a surprise that Russian troops are operating in Syria. As early as March 2012 sources in the  United Nations Security Council were reporting that Russian “anti-terror” squads were arriving in the country, entering via the Russian military base in Tartus on the northwestern shore. At the time Russia denied the report, but Russia’s Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov did admit that his country had “military and technical advisors” in Syria. By May of 2013 there were whispers of a secret unit, Zaslon (or “Screen”),  launching an operation in Syria.  As Mark Galeotti, a specialist at New York University on Russia’s security services, observed in May 2013:
     “Zaslon is perhaps the most secret of Russia’s many spetsgruppy or special forces detachments. It is part of the SVR, the Foreign Intelligence Service — specifically its Directorate S, responsible for undercover operations. Formed in 1998, Zaslon is tasked with covert missions abroad ranging from protecting officials in dangerous environments to conducting assassinations. It numbers some 280 operators, who are trained and equipped to the highest standards.
    “Unlike most Russian special forces, Zaslon does not publicize its activities or even its existence. They have sometimes supplemented embassy security details in especially dangerous conditions; indeed, they provided security for former SVR director Mikhail Fradkov when he visited Damascus last year. They are typically used for more direct operations, though. Zaslon was rumored to be part of the operation to assassinate insurgents who kidnapped and killed four Russian diplomats in Iraq in 2006, for example, and they may be ready to free captured Russian military advisers.
    However, according to one Russian report, two Zaslon elements were also deployed to Baghdad in the dying days of the Hussein regime. Their mission was to seize or destroy documents which Moscow would have found embarrassing had they ended up in U.S. hands. Given the scale and depth of Russian support for Assad, it could similarly be that they are also in Syria to cover Moscow’s tracks or else ensure that sensitive military technology — including new surface-to-air systems — does not end up in foreign hands.”
    In January, 2013, a Russian judge, Sergey Aleksandrovich Berezhnoy, was shot in the face by Syrian rebels while purportedly “on vacation” in Syria, albeit a working vacation since he was escorting a team from the pro-Assad Abkhazian Network News Agency (ANNA) as it reported on regime-on-rebel fighting near Damascus. A manager for ANNA described Berehnoy as having “fought for five years as an intelligence officer in Abkhazia and in other hot spots of our vast Motherland,” a claim later taken up by Russian state television and then denied by Berezhov himself.
    Then there is the ‘Slavonic Corps,’ a group of Russian mercenaries, recruited in St. Petersburg, who were hired to defend Assad’s oil resources east of Homs. Those men, most of whom were former Russian special forces soldiers, were almost surely fighting in Syria with the full knowledge and consent of the Kremlin.
    The key difference, however, is that while the Slavonic Corps was fighting in a limited capacity to secure oil fields, and while Zaslon was allegedly hunting rebel leaders, the GRU units in Al Harra appear to have been working with the Assad regime to intercept communications and better execute Assad’s counterinsurgency strategy.
    Spying on Israel
    According to the Oryx Blog, which cites Debka File, a website connected to Israeli military intelligence, Center S was recently upgraded in “reaction to Iranian concern of the facility being too much focused on the Syrian Civil War, neglecting espionage on Israel.” No doubt the IRGC wanted ears closer to Jerusalem to warn of any impending aerial assault on Iran’s nuclear weapons program, but there is likely another impetus behind spying on the Jewish state.
    In recent months, the Israel Defense Forces, fearful of how the ensuing Syria crisis unleash jihadists into the occupied Golan Heights, have also increased contacts with Syrian rebels in the southern regions of Quneitra and Daraa, while waging sporadic war against the regime. On September 23, the day U.S. and coalition warplanes began bombing the Islamic State in Syria, Israel shot down a Syrian fighter jet that had accidentally slipped into Israeli airspace while trying to interdict rebel advances to the Syrian-Golan border. As Ehud Yaari of the Washington Institute for Near East Peace writes, the rebels now control:
    “…most of the territory adjacent to the 1974 Israeli-Syrian Truce Line, including the narrow demilitarized “Area of Separation” overseen for the past forty years by the UN Disengagement Observer Force. UNDOF was originally established by the Security Council to supervise Israel and Syria’s adherence to agreed limitations on their border deployments, but as a result of rebel advances it has now practically ceased to function except in a small remote sector on the slopes of Mt. Hermon. Its forces have abandoned bases and a string of other positions in Syria and discontinued inspections there. Meanwhile, UNDOF’s fundamental purpose on that side of the border — monitoring the Syrian army’s order of battle — has become largely moot because the Assad regime’s frontline 61st and 90th Brigades have completely collapsed.”
    Previously, Syrian Army positions have been destroyed with Israeli Tammuk missiles in retaliation for shelling into the Golan, as IDF video footage has demonstrated. The map on the captured Spetsnaz SIGNINT facility, which is less than 7 miles from the Golan, shows “Israeli Armed Forces bases and units,” no doubt because Russian intelligence is trying to minimize the regime’s risk in losing more personnel and materiel to errant provocations, to which the Israelis unfailingly respond. Jabhat al-Nusra, al-Qaeda’s official affiliate in Syria, has been more circumspect in its dealings with its neighbor: thus far, no terrorist attacks have been waged by the group in the Golan or against Israeli forces.
    But is there another reason for this SIGNINT facility’s base in the south?
    As Yaari notes, Israel has treated around 1,400 wounded Syrians in Israeli hospitals for months and has dispatched humanitarian aid to villagers. But the IDF has also been coordinating with rebel groups, and though this relationship has yet to qualify as client-proxy in orientation, it remains that case that “a modest amount of weapons have been provided to [the rebels by the Israelis], mainly rocket-propelled grenade launchers.”
    Should southern Syria proliferate with Islamic State militants, and should the undeclared “truce” between the IDF and Jabhat al-Nusra evaporate, then Israel may be inclined to invest more heavily in the moderate rebels, a policy which would affect the Assad regime as much as it would the radicals. And while it’s true that Moscow and Jerusalem have never been closer diplomatically, the Kremlin cannot afford to allow Israel to contribute to the further weakening of its most valued ally in the Middle East. Moscow Center knows and respects Israeli military and intelligence capability. It has everything to fear from Israeli intervention in Syria.
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  • 'Thank God for the Saudis': ISIS, Iraq, and the Lessons of ...

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    Jun 23, 2014 - ISIS fighters at a checkpoint in the northern Iraq city of Mosul (Reuters). “Thank God for the Saudis and Prince Bandar,” John McCain told ...
  • Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north ...

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    Jul 13, 2014 - How far is Saudi Arabia complicit in the Isis takeover of much of northern ... PrinceBandar told him: "The time is not far off in the Middle East, ...
  • ISIS: The monster that grew in plain sight of Washington and ...

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    Sep 15, 2014 - The Islamic State (IS/ISIS) did not become the monster it is today by ... When the Saudi king charged Bandar bin Sultan with handling the Syrian  ...
  • Bandar bin Sultan's Botched Syrian Intervention: Dateline ...

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    2011), Bandar began his political career in 1978 as King Khaled's personal ... such as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and al-Nusra.
  • America's Allies Are Funding ISIS

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    Tear gas, rubber bullets, pepper spray, and SWAT teams were hard pressed to contain the rioters who seemed to delight in destruction at the Keene, N.H., Pumpkin Festival
    Today the city of Keene, N.H., faces a massive cleanup following a spate of riots that raged throughout much of the day Saturday and into the early morning hours of Sunday as parties celebrating the annual Keene Pumpkin Festival turned into violent chaos.
    Exact numbers on the injured weren't available Sunday morning and weren't expected until late Sunday or Monday, said Keene Police Sgt. Michael Kopcha. But Keene Fire Chief Mark Howard told a local cable news station at about 9 p.m. Saturday that at least 30 people were injured and 25 taken to the hospital with myriad injuries including lacerations and broken bones received from flying beer bottles, fistfights, jumps from rooftops and other blunt traumas. Kopcha reported that none of the injuries appeared to be life threatening.
    Police used tear gas, rubber bullets, a helicopter and riot gear to try to disperse the crowds, which some estimates put in the thousands, from the neighborhoods surrounding the festival, which takes place primarily on the main drag of the city.
    For their part, the revelers were quite pleased with themselves.
    “It’s (expletive) wicked,” Steven French, an 18-year-old who told the local newspaper, The Keene Sentinel he was said he was visiting from Haverhill, Mass. “It’s just like a rush. You’re revolting from the cops. … It’s a blast to do things that you’re not supposed to do.”
    The parties started Friday, with several arrests and injuries reported. One police report indicated residents of a student housing unit in a neighborhood near Keene State College attacked fire fighters called to the building.
    Things wound down a bit in the early hours of Saturday, but then started escalating shortly after 1 p.m. when a report came in that a large party was forming in one of the neighborhoods near Keene State. That party was moved out of the street and into a backyard. Roughly 30 minutes later, a complaint came in about a house party with several hundred people where people were jumping off the roof of the building. Police called the owner of the house, who according to police reports, declined to come to the scene and didn't want to send someone else to break up the party because of the size of the group.
    But those were just a few of the parties happening. Several more were going on a few streets over and were somewhat mobile in that one party sort of bled into the others, witnesses said. Those parties in turn fed into one big party being hosted at about the same time in about the same place as a company called Finna Rage. The Massachusetts-based entertainment group is known for throwing pop up parties on college campuses. They then film the bacchanalia that ensues and post the videos online.
    Dana Colson, of Swanzey, N.H., who manages three of the properties adjacent to the field where much of the trouble started, said he was called at about 2 p.m. to go out and check on the properties after his boss heard police had been called. One of the first things he saw, other than a giant mud wallow in a field behind the houses where several people had been wrestling, were partygoers throwing a tire up into the air and letting it land on people in the crowd.
    "The field was just full of people, had to have been at least 1,500," Colson said. "They were throwing bottles up in the air, not caring where they landed. It was just a mess. … I saw bottles being thrown into people's faces. … I saw one kid with a compound fracture to his leg. I saw the bone sticking out of his leg. And he refused medical treatment."
    Colson said EMTs carried the young man out of the crowd anyway to an ambulance waiting up the street. In this case, the crowd let them go, in other instances, while EMTs were trying to treat the injured they had to do so while dodging bottles lobbed at them from the crowd.
    "They were out of hand," Colson said. "They just went nuts."
    Except, he said, for the students who live at the properties he manages. Colson said, "They were desperately trying to stop this. … I don't know much about this (Finna Rage), but they were the guys that are responsible for this."
    Trevor Austin, the CEO of Finna Rage entertainment denied responsibility. "It's ridiculous, we've been out of Keene since 4 this afternoon," he said in an email written at 1 a.m. Sunday.
    Ali Taylor, who owns the restaurant Alpha Dogs located on Winchester St., where some of the riots broke out, said that in the early afternoon, she started noticing huge crowds of college age kids running from one side of Winchester Street—a heavily trafficked artery leading to Main Street—to the other, "almost like they were crisscrossing," she said.
    “It’s just like a rush. You’re revolting from the cops. … It’s a blast to do things that you’re not supposed to do.”
    "They started standing on top of cars and tipping cars," she said. "They were climbing on streetlight posts and pushing them over. They had these big bars they were using to hit the street signs and light posts. Half the lights on campus are out. It's bad. It's really bad. I'm just so glad that none of the people on Main Street at the Pumpkin Festival knew what was happening."
    SWAT teams from larger cities like Manchester and Nashua showed up early, Taylor said. Linked arm in arm, they formed a human barricade in an attempt to contain the rioters to the three affected streets and away from Main Street where tens of thousands of families were meandering through patches of pumpkins and vendor stands.
    "They shot rubber bullets to try to deter the students from coming onto Main Street," Taylor said of the police, as she described the scene that played out in front of her business on Winchester Street. "There were SWAT teams here all day and into the night. … They did a really good job. I could see what they were trying to do. They were trying to keep them contained. But a lot of times (police) just watched the riots go on because there were thousands of rioters and not a lot of police officers."
    Kopcha said there were officers from their department, state police and several other area departments which gave them roughly 100 to 200 police on the ground against thousands of rioters.
    Throughout the events, multiple witnesses said, police remained calm. They never saw an officer use force other than pepper spray, tear gas or rubber bullets against the advancing hostile and destructive crowds.
    "I saw kids throwing bottles right at the officers and they smashed at their feet," Taylor said. "And (the officers) just stood their ground. It could have been so much worse if they hadn't done that. They really were doing the best they could."
    Former N.H. State Rep. Steve Lindsey was working on Keene State's campus when the riots broke out. He took to his Facebook page to describe what happened to him at work Saturday:
    "Security asked me to lock the double steel doors of the student center. (Rioters) were building a barricade across Winchester Street and looking for material. Our… mail carts and mobile trash barrels would have suited them fine. Hands shaking… I found the right keys and locked the door bars. I went into the center to warn the cooks. The crowd was getting out of hand."
    When it was finally time to leave work, Lindsey offered to go with his boss to get his car, which was parked in the middle of the melee. Once they got to the car, Lindsey was going to try to clear a path for his boss to back out.
    "But he yelled 'Get in!' I did but as I did, a big lamp post with a large lantern came crashing down behind us, six feet, and shattered," Lindsey wrote. "He drove ahead and crack, a beer bottle smashed against the side of his car. He kept his cool as we weaved in and out of the crowd, We did not want to hit anyone as that would have been the end of us... A second bottle hit our car. Then what I took to be a rock. But we moved ahead away from the maelstrom."
    With directions from police, Lindsey and his boss were able to make it to safety.
    Police continued to keep crowds contained throughout Saturday afternoon and into the night although rioters started fires in the street, tipped cars and ran amok where they could. By about 10 p.m. Police had the three affected streets cordoned off. At about 11 p.m. State Police started flying a helicopter over the scene, ordering the crowds to disperse. Colson, who was still guarding one of the houses he manages said that broke up the majority of the groups tearing through the area. Although some groups, through the thick fog of tear gas, pepper spray and smoke that hung over the city, still lingered.
    Rioting is not new on Keene State's campus. Riots broke out both after last year's pumpkin festival and after the Red Sox World Series win last year.
    Early in the evening Saturday, Keene State officials released a statement that seemed to place the blame for the riots on out of towners. However, by the end of the night, Keene State President Anne Huot released a statement acknowledging her students were taking part in the destruction.
    "Despite the concerted efforts of organizers, city officials, police, and Keene State College, there continued to be disruptive behavior at parties in multiple locations around the city, injuries, and property damage," Huot's statement read. "We are mindful that Keene State students played a part in this behavior and we intend to hold those individuals accountable for their actions. We deplore the actions of those whose only purpose was to cause mayhem. "
    Keene caught the attention recently of the Colbert Report and Last Week Tonight with Jon Oliver. The town was teased about accepting a hand me down $286,000 Bear Cat from the Pentagon, and the police department became the butt of the joke after saying it needed the Bear Cat for Pumpkin Festival. There is no immediate indication the Bear Cat was brought out during the riots.
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    Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country - Comment - Voices

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    The fatal moment predicted by Prince Bandar may now have come for many Shia, with Saudi Arabia playing an important role in bringing it about by supporting the anti-Shia jihad in Iraq and Syria. Since the capture of Mosul by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isis) on 10 June, Shia women and children have been killed in villages south of Kirkuk, and Shia air force cadets machine-gunned and buried in mass graves near Tikrit.
    In Mosul, Shia shrines and mosques have been blown up, and in the nearby Shia Turkoman city of Tal Afar 4,000 houses have been taken over by Isis fighters as "spoils of war". Simply to be identified as Shia or a related sect, such as the Alawites, in Sunni rebel-held parts of Iraq and Syria today, has become as dangerous as being a Jew was in Nazi-controlled parts of Europe in 1940.
    There is no doubt about the accuracy of the quote by Prince Bandar, secretary-general of the Saudi National Security Council from 2005 and head of General Intelligence between 2012 and 2014, the crucial two years when al-Qa'ida-type jihadis took over the Sunni-armed opposition in Iraq and Syria. Speaking at the Royal United Services Institute last week, Dearlove, who headed MI6 from 1999 to 2004, emphasised the significance of Prince Bandar's words, saying that they constituted "a chilling comment that I remember very well indeed".
    He does not doubt that substantial and sustained funding from private donors in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, to which the authorities may have turned a blind eye, has played a central role in the Isis surge into Sunni areas of Iraq. He said: "Such things simply do not happen spontaneously." This sounds realistic since the tribal and communal leadership in Sunni majority provinces is much beholden to Saudi and Gulf paymasters, and would be unlikely to cooperate with Isis without their consent.
    Prince Bandar bin Sultan Prince Bandar bin SultanDearlove's explosive revelation about the prediction of a day of reckoning for the Shia by Prince Bandar, and the former head of MI6's view that Saudi Arabia is involved in the Isis-led Sunni rebellion, has attracted surprisingly little attention. Coverage of Dearlove's speech focused instead on his main theme that the threat from Isis to the West is being exaggerated because, unlike Bin Laden's al-Qa'ida, it is absorbed in a new conflict that "is essentially Muslim on Muslim". Unfortunately, Christians in areas captured by Isis are finding this is not true, as their churches are desecrated and they are forced to flee. A difference between al-Qa'ida and Isis is that the latter is much better organised; if it does attack Western targets the results are likely to be devastating.
    The forecast by Prince Bandar, who was at the heart of Saudi security policy for more than three decades, that the 100 million Shia in the Middle East face disaster at the hands of the Sunni majority, will convince many Shia that they are the victims of a Saudi-led campaign to crush them. "The Shia in general are getting very frightened after what happened in northern Iraq," said an Iraqi commentator, who did not want his name published. Shia see the threat as not only military but stemming from the expanded influence over mainstream Sunni Islam of Wahhabism, the puritanical and intolerant version of Islam espoused by Saudi Arabia that condemns Shia and other Islamic sects as non-Muslim apostates and polytheists.
    In pictures: The rise of Isis
    1 of 74
    Dearlove says that he has no inside knowledge obtained since he retired as head of MI6 10 years ago to become Master of Pembroke College in Cambridge. But, drawing on past experience, he sees Saudi strategic thinking as being shaped by two deep-seated beliefs or attitudes. First, they are convinced that there "can be no legitimate or admissible challenge to the Islamic purity of their Wahhabi credentials as guardians of Islam's holiest shrines". But, perhaps more significantly given the deepening Sunni-Shia confrontation, the Saudi belief that they possess a monopoly of Islamic truth leads them to be "deeply attracted towards any militancy which can effectively challenge Shia-dom".
    Western governments traditionally play down the connection between Saudi Arabia and its Wahhabist faith, on the one hand, and jihadism, whether of the variety espoused by Osama bin Laden and al-Qa'ida or by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's Isis. There is nothing conspiratorial or secret about these links: 15 out of 19 of the 9/11 hijackers were Saudis, as was Bin Laden and most of the private donors who funded the operation.
    Sir Richard Dearlove Sir Richard Dearlove
    The difference between al-Qa'ida and Isis can be overstated: when Bin Laden was killed by United States forces in 2011, al-Baghdadi released a statement eulogising him, and Isis pledged to launch 100 attacks in revenge for his death.
    But there has always been a second theme to Saudi policy towards al-Qa'ida type jihadis, contradicting Prince Bandar's approach and seeing jihadis as a mortal threat to the Kingdom. Dearlove illustrates this attitude by relating how, soon after 9/11, he visited the Saudi capital Riyadh with Tony Blair.
    He remembers the then head of Saudi General Intelligence "literally shouting at me across his office: '9/11 is a mere pinprick on the West. In the medium term, it is nothing more than a series of personal tragedies. What these terrorists want is to destroy the House of Saud and remake the Middle East.'" In the event, Saudi Arabia adopted both policies, encouraging the jihadis as a useful tool of Saudi anti-Shia influence abroad but suppressing them at home as a threat to the status quo. It is this dual policy that has fallen apart over the last year.
    Saudi sympathy for anti-Shia "militancy" is identified in leaked US official documents. The then US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton wrote in December 2009 in a cable released by Wikileaks that "Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qa'ida, the Taliban, LeT [Lashkar-e-Taiba in Pakistan] and other terrorist groups." She said that, in so far as Saudi Arabia did act against al-Qa'ida, it was as a domestic threat and not because of its activities abroad. This policy may now be changing with the dismissal of Prince Bandar as head of intelligence this year. But the change is very recent, still ambivalent and may be too late: it was only last week that a Saudi prince said he would no longer fund a satellite television station notorious for its anti-Shia bias based in Egypt.
    The Sunni Ahmed al-Rifai shrine near Tal Afar is bulldozed The Sunni Ahmed al-Rifai shrine near Tal Afar is bulldozed
    The problem for the Saudis is that their attempts since Bandar lost his job to create an anti-Maliki and anti-Assad Sunni constituency which is simultaneously against al-Qa'ida and its clones have failed.
    By seeking to weaken Maliki and Assad in the interest of a more moderate Sunni faction, Saudi Arabia and its allies are in practice playing into the hands of Isis which is swiftly gaining full control of the Sunni opposition in Syria and Iraq. In Mosul, as happened previously in its Syrian capital Raqqa, potential critics and opponents are disarmed, forced to swear allegiance to the new caliphate and killed if they resist.
    The West may have to pay a price for its alliance with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf monarchies, which have always found Sunni jihadism more attractive than democracy. A striking example of double standards by the western powers was the Saudi-backed suppression of peaceful democratic protests by the Shia majority in Bahrain in March 2011. Some 1,500 Saudi troops were sent across the causeway to the island kingdom as the demonstrations were ended with great brutality and Shia mosques and shrines were destroyed.
    An alibi used by the US and Britain is that the Sunni al-Khalifa royal family in Bahrain is pursuing dialogue and reform. But this excuse looked thin last week as Bahrain expelled a top US diplomat, the assistant secretary of state for human rights Tom Malinowksi, for meeting leaders of the main Shia opposition party al-Wifaq. Mr Malinowski tweeted that the Bahrain government's action was "not about me but about undermining dialogue".
    Iraqi leader al-Maliki Iraqi leader al-MalikiWestern powers and their regional allies have largely escaped criticism for their role in reigniting the war in Iraq. Publicly and privately, they have blamed the Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki for persecuting and marginalising the Sunni minority, so provoking them into supporting the Isis-led revolt. There is much truth in this, but it is by no means the whole story. Maliki did enough to enrage the Sunni, partly because he wanted to frighten Shia voters into supporting him in the 30 April election by claiming to be the Shia community's protector against Sunni counter-revolution.
    But for all his gargantuan mistakes, Maliki's failings are not the reason why the Iraqi state is disintegrating. What destabilised Iraq from 2011 on was the revolt of the Sunni in Syria and the takeover of that revolt by jihadis, who were often sponsored by donors in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and United Arab Emirates. Again and again Iraqi politicians warned that by not seeking to close down the civil war in Syria, Western leaders were making it inevitable that the conflict in Iraq would restart. "I guess they just didn't believe us and were fixated on getting rid of [President Bashar al-] Assad," said an Iraqi leader in Baghdad last week.
    Of course, US and British politicians and diplomats would argue that they were in no position to bring an end to the Syrian conflict. But this is misleading. By insisting that peace negotiations must be about the departure of Assad from power, something that was never going to happen since Assad held most of the cities in the country and his troops were advancing, the US and Britain made sure the war would continue.
    The chief beneficiary is Isis which over the last two weeks has been mopping up the last opposition to its rule in eastern Syria. The Kurds in the north and the official al-Qa'ida representative, Jabhat al-Nusra, are faltering under the impact of Isis forces high in morale and using tanks and artillery captured from the Iraqi army. It is also, without the rest of the world taking notice, taking over many of the Syrian oil wells that it did not already control.
    The Shia Al-Qubba Husseiniya mosque in Mosul explodes The Shia Al-Qubba Husseiniya mosque in Mosul explodes Saudi Arabia has created a Frankenstein's monster over which it is rapidly losing control. The same is true of its allies such as Turkey which has been a vital back-base for Isis and Jabhat al-Nusra by keeping the 510-mile-long Turkish-Syrian border open. As Kurdish-held border crossings fall to Isis, Turkey will find it has a new neighbour of extraordinary violence, and one deeply ungrateful for past favours from the Turkish intelligence service.
    As for Saudi Arabia, it may come to regret its support for the Sunni revolts in Syria and Iraq as jihadi social media begins to speak of the House of Saud as its next target. It is the unnamed head of Saudi General Intelligence quoted by Dearlove after 9/11 who is turning out to have analysed the potential threat to Saudi Arabia correctly and not Prince Bandar, which may explain why the latter was sacked earlier this year.
    Nor is this the only point on which Prince Bandar was dangerously mistaken. The rise of Isis is bad news for the Shia of Iraq but it is worse news for the Sunni whose leadership has been ceded to a pathologically bloodthirsty and intolerant movement, a sort of Islamic Khmer Rouge, which has no aim but war without end.
    The Sunni caliphate rules a large, impoverished and isolated area from which people are fleeing. Several million Sunni in and around Baghdad are vulnerable to attack and 255 Sunni prisoners have already been massacred. In the long term, Isis cannot win, but its mix of fanaticism and good organisation makes it difficult to dislodge.
    "God help the Shia," said Prince Bandar, but, partly thanks to him, the shattered Sunni communities of Iraq and Syria may need divine help even more than the Shia.
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    'Thank God for the Saudis': ISIS, Iraq, and the Lessons of Blowback

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    U.S lawmakers encouraged officials in Riyadh to arm Syrian rebels. Now that strategy may have created a monster in the Middle East.
    ISIS fighters at a checkpoint in the northern Iraq city of Mosul (Reuters)
    “Thank God for the Saudis and Prince Bandar,” John McCain told CNN’s Candy Crowley in January 2014. “Thank God for the Saudis and Prince Bandar, and for our Qatari friends,” the senator said once again a month later, at the Munich Security Conference.
    McCain was praising Prince Bandar bin Sultan, then the head of Saudi Arabia’s intelligence services and a former ambassador to the United States, for supporting forces fighting Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria. McCain and Senator Lindsey Graham had previously met with Bandar to encourage the Saudis to arm Syrian rebel forces.
    But shortly after McCain’s Munich comments, Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah relieved Bandar of his Syrian covert-action portfolio, which was then transferred to Saudi Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef. By mid-April, just two weeks after President Obama met with King Abdullah on March 28, Bandar had also been removed from his position as head of Saudi intelligence—according to official government statements, at “his own request.” Sources close to the royal court told me that, in fact, the king fired Bandar over his handling of the kingdom’s Syria policy and other simmering tensions, after initially refusing to accept Bandar’s offers to resign. (Bandar retains his title as secretary-general of the king’s National Security Council.)
    The Free Syrian Army (FSA), the “moderate” armed opposition in the country, receives a lot of attention. But two of the most successful factions fighting Assad’s forces are Islamist extremist groups: Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the latter of which is nowamassing territory in Iraq and threatening to further destabilize the entire region. And that success is in part due to the support they have received from two Persian Gulf countries: Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
    Qatar’s military and economic largesse has made its way to Jabhat al-Nusra, to the point that a senior Qatari official told me he can identify al-Nusra commanders by the blocks they control in various Syrian cities. But ISIS is another matter. As one senior Qatari official stated, “ISIS has been a Saudi project.”
    ISIS, in fact, may have been a major part of Bandar’s covert-ops strategy in Syria. The Saudi government, for its part, has denied allegations, including claims made by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, that it has directly supported ISIS. But there are also signs that the kingdom recently shifted its assistance—whether direct or indirect—away from extremist factions in Syria and toward more moderate opposition groups.
    The United States, France, and Turkey have long sought to support the weak and disorganized FSA, and to secure commitments from Qatar and Saudi Arabia to do the same. When Mohammed bin Nayef took the Syrian file from Bandar in February, the Saudi government appeared to finally be endorsing this strategy. As The Washington Post’s David Ignatius wrote at the time, “Prince Mohammed’s new oversight role reflects the increasing concern in Saudi Arabia and other neighboring countries about al-Qaeda’s growing power within the Syrian opposition.”
    The worry at the time, punctuated by a February meeting between U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice and the intelligence chiefs of Turkey, Qatar, Jordan, and others in the region, was that ISIS and al-Qaeda-affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra had emerged as the preeminent rebel forces in Syria. The governments who took part reportedly committed to cut off ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra, and support the FSA instead. But while official support from Qatar and Saudi Arabia appears to have dried up, non-governmental military and financial support may still be flowing from these countries to Islamist groups.
    Senior White House officials have refused to discuss the question of any particular Saudi officials aiding ISIS and have not commented on Bandar’s departure. But they have emphasized that Saudi Arabia is now both supporting moderate Syrian rebels and helping coordinate regional policies to deal with an ascendant ISIS threat.
    Like elements of the mujahideen, which benefited from U.S. financial and military support during the Soviet war in Afghanistan and then later turned on the West in the form of al-Qaeda, ISIS achieved scale and consequence through Saudi support, only to now pose a grave threat to the kingdom and the region. It’s this concern about blowback that has motivated Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to encourage restraint in arming Syrian rebels. President Obama has so far heeded these warnings.  
    John McCain’s desire to help rebel forces toss off a brutal dictator and fight for a more just and inclusive Syria is admirable. But as has been proven repeatedly in the Middle East, ousting strongmen doesn’t necessarily produce more favorable successor governments. Embracing figures like Bandar, who may have tried to achieve his objectives in Syria by building a monster, isn't worth it.
    Read the whole story
     
    · · · ·

    Short on early successes, Pentagon in for long haul against Islamic State - Christian Science Monitor

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    New York Times

    Short on early successes, Pentagon in for long haul against Islamic State
    Christian Science Monitor
    U.S. Central Command, Army Gen. Lloyd Austin cautioned against expecting quick progress in the campaign against Islamic State militants. He predicted the jihadists will be 'much degraded' a year from now.
    US-led coalition jets strike Kobani after Islamic State shellingReuters
    Middle East Updates / US-led coalition bombs Islamic State forces in KobaniHaaretz
    US-led coalition jets hit Islamic State targets in KobaniIrish Times
    TIME -The Daily Star -Voice of America
    all 1,178 news articles »
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    Page 5

    2nd nurse with Ebola may have had worse case during flights - CBS News

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    Atlanta Journal Constitution

    2nd nurse with Ebola may have had worse case during flights
    CBS News
    Last Updated Oct 18, 2014 10:03 AM EDT. DENVER - The president of Frontier Airlines says a nurse who was on flights between Dallas and Cleveland and who later tested positive for Ebola may have been at a more advanced stage of the illness than ...
    When Ebola hit in US, response was inconsistentBoston Globe
    Nurse on flights may have had more advanced case of EbolaThe Hill
    Nurse on flights may have had worse case of EbolaWashington Times
    Lynchburg News and Advance
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    Obama warns against Ebola hysteria as cruise ship heads back to Texas 

    1 Share
    • President rejects calls for west Africa travel ban
    • Cruise ship returns to Texas after passenger isolated
    • WHO will review handling of crisis when it is over
    Continue reading...

    Man accused of spying worked on strategic Polish gas project

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    WARSAW (Reuters) - A lawyer arrested in Poland on Wednesday on suspicion of spying for a foreign state worked on a Polish gas project which officials view as strategically vital because it will cut dependence on imported Russian gas.
      

    Polish Official: Alleged Spies Worked for Russia - ABC News

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    Reuters

    Polish Official: Alleged Spies Worked for Russia
    ABC News
    A high-ranking Polish army officer and a civilian put under arrest in Poland on espionage charges worked for Russian military intelligence, a Polish lawmaker said. The two men were detained for questioning on Wednesday and have been put under arrest ...
    Poland arrests two men on suspicion of spying for RussiaReuters
    Poland arrests two 'suspected Russian spies'BBC News

    all 56 news articles »

    Obama Warns Against 'Hysteria' Over Ebola

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    U.S. President Barack Obama used his weekly address to the nation to urge Americans not to "give in to hysteria or fear" over the Ebola virus.

    Климкин: Украине не хватит помощи в 30 млрд долларов - Комсомольская правда

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    Комсомольская правда

    Климкин: Украине не хватит помощи в 30 млрд долларов
    Комсомольская правда
    Украине будет сало 30 млдрд долларов финансовой помощи в виде кредитов от Запада. Об этом заявил глава МИД республики Павел Климкин. "В настоящее время мы исходим из того, что сокращение ВВП составит от 7 до 8%. Я думаю, что будет значительная дополнительная ...
    Глава МИД Украины заявил, что Киеву не хватит $30 млрд помощи ЗападаРИА Новости
    Климкин: Денег запада не хватит на решение проблем УкраиныКомсомольская Правда в Украине
    Глава МИД Украины: Киеву не хватит обещанной помощи в $30 млрдРусская Служба Новостей
    Правда.Ру -Газета.Ru
    Все похожие статьи: 44 »
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    Page 6

    Папа Римский и председатель Отдела внешних церковных связей РПЦ в Ватикане обсудили ситуацию в Украине : Новости УНИАН

    1 Share
    В Ватикане 17 октября Папа Римский Франциск и председатель Отдела внешних церковных связей Московского Патриархата митрополит Волоколамский Иларион обсудили ситуацию в Украине.
    Как сообщает Служба коммуникации ОВЦС МП, митрополит Иларион рассказал о ситуации на востоке Украины, где погибли трое священнослужителей и около пятидесяти храмов подверглись полному или частичному разрушению. Председатель ОВЦС отметил вовлеченность Украинской Греко-Католической Церкви в политический конфликт.
    Другой темой беседы стало трагическое положение христианского населения Ближнего Востока. Собеседники отметили необходимость консолидированных действий Церквей в деле защиты христиан в ближневосточном регионе. Председатель ОВЦС ознакомил Папу с инициативами РПЦ в данной сфере и поблагодарил Понтифика за миротворческие усилия.
    В ходе встречи стороны обсудили различные аспекты православно-католического взаимодействия.

    Polish Official: Alleged Spies Worked for Russia

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    Associated Press
    A high-ranking Polish army officer and a civilian put under arrest in Poland on espionage charges worked for Russian military intelligence, a Polish lawmaker said.
    The two men were detained for questioning on Wednesday and have been put under arrest for three months while their cases are investigated further.
    The media say that one of them is an army colonel and the other is a lawyer with Polish and Russian passports who had some access to lawmakers and to energy security issues.
    Member of the parliamentary commission for the security services, Marek Biernacki, said late Friday that both worked for the Russian military intelligence.
    Their cases are investigated separately by the military and by civilian prosecutors, who, however, refuse to divulge details.
    Poland's ties with neighbor Russia are at a low point after Warsaw condemned Russia's annexation of the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine and Moscow's role in the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine.
    Poland is also taking efforts to decrease its 60-percent dependence on Russian gas imports.

    Is it a bird, is it a plane? No - it's a mystery man flying past an Airbus full of passengers as it flew over Macclesfield

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    Pilots on a holiday jet were left stunned when a 'flying man' whizzed past their aircraft at 3,500 feet.  The man flew within 100 metres of the plane as it made its descent in to Manchester Airport.

    Unbowed, Putin Chews the Scenery in Milan

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    The brash antics of President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia upstaged other world leaders, frustrating those at a meeting in Milan who hoped he would budge on the Ukraine crisis.






    Serbia's government - The Economist

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    The Economist

    Serbia's government
    The Economist
    UNDER Aleksandar Vucic, Serbia's prime minister, the country is caught between its European ambitions and his autocratic drift. This week's visit by Russia's president, Vladimir Putin, highlights Serbia's dilemmas. Its main strategic goal is to join ...
    Russia is conducting a massive McDonald's purgeVox
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    Ukrainian, Russian Leaders Sound Optimistic NoteABC News
    Voice of America -NBCNews.com -Deutsche Welle
    all 1,862 news articles »

    Реорганизация украинской разведки нацелена на борьбу со "стратегическим оппонентом" - Вести.Ru

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    Обозреватель

    Реорганизация украинской разведки нацелена на борьбу со "стратегическим оппонентом"
    Вести.Ru
    На Украине будет создана Национальная разведывательная программа, которая предполагает реорганизацию разведслужб. Об этом сообщил глава Комитета по вопросам разведки при президенте Игорь Смешко. Ссылаясь на действующее законодательство, он отказался говорить, ...
    Украинские власти готовят программу по реорганизации разведслужбКоммерсантъ
    В Украине создадут секретную разведывательную программу - СмешкоЛІГА.net
    На Украине создадут программу по реорганизации разведслужбГазета.Ru
    Аргументы.ру -РБК Украина -GIGAmir
    Все похожие статьи: 20 »
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    Page 7

    The myth of Russian humiliation

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    · · · ·

    The West is paying dearly for cozying up to Russia over 25 years - Washington Post

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    Reuters

    The West is paying dearly for cozying up to Russia over 25 years
    Washington Post
    Meanwhile, not only was Russia not “humiliated” during this era, it was given de facto “great power” status, along with the Soviet seat on the U.N. Security Council and Soviet embassies.Russia also received Soviet nuclear weapons, some transferred ...
    Moscow says US working on military 'scenarios' at Russia's bordersReuters
    Defying Russia, Georgia to host NATO training centre - ministerReuters UK
    US works on military 'scenarios' near our borders - Russian defense ministerRT
    RIA Novosti -ITAR-TASS
    all 163 news articles »

    David Cameron and Vladimir Putin clash over Ukraine at EU-Asian summit in Milan

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    • PM said Russia must denounce unofficial elections in rebel-held areas
    • But Mr Putin failed to offer any assurance on the issue during talks in Milan
    • Downing Street said exchanges between Putin and EU leaders were 'frank'
    • Kremlin said talks 'difficult and full of misunderstanding and disagreements'
    Published: 13:46 GMT, 17 October 2014 Updated: 19:41 GMT, 17 October 2014
    33 shares
    David Cameron has clashed with Russian President Vladimir Putin in diplomatic talks in Milan today over the continuing crisis in Ukraine.
    The Prime Minister said Russia must denounce unofficial elections in rebel-held areas of Ukraine, which are propped up by the Kremlin, if it is to stand any chance of seeing EU sanctions eased.
    But Mr Putin failed to offer any assurance on the issue during talks with European leaders and Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko in a fresh push to end the conflict.
    David Cameron (left), French President Francois Hollande (centre) and Russian leader Vladimir Putin (right) held talks in Milan today
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    David Cameron (left), French President Francois Hollande (centre) and Russian leader Vladimir Putin (right) held talks in Milan today
    Downing Street sources described the exchanges with EU leaders and Mr Poroshenko - in the margins of today's summit in Milan - as 'frank'.
    Mr Putin declared his intent to avoid a 'frozen conflict' in the region, they said, but had been pressed repeatedly to offer concrete examples of what the Kremlin was prepared to do.
    The Kremlin said the talks had been 'difficult and full of misunderstanding and disagreements'.
    A ceasefire deal was signed in Minsk in September but more than 300 people have since been killed in continued clashes with pro-Russian separatists in the east of the country.
    Moscow denies arming the rebel forces but the EU and US have imposed economic sanctions in response to the annexation of Crimea and what they see as continued support for separatists.
    'Vladimir Putin said very clearly that he doesn't want a frozen conflict, he doesn't want a divided Ukraine,' Mr Cameron said after the talks ahead of the Asia Europe Meeting.
    Copy link to paste in your message
    Copy link to paste in your message
    The Prime Minister held 'frank' talks with his Russian counterpart in talks over the crisis in Ukraine
    David Cameron arrived at the Asia-Europe summit in Milan, northern Italy, today amid continuing bloody skirmishes in Eastern Ukraine
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    David Cameron arrived at the Asia-Europe summit in Milan, northern Italy, today amid continuing bloody skirmishes in Eastern Ukraine
    Vladimir Putin gets into a car as he leaves the Asia-Europe Meeting, brings together 53 countries - representing more than half the world's gross domestic product and over 60 per cent of the global population
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    Vladimir Putin gets into a car as he leaves the Asia-Europe Meeting, brings together 53 countries - representing more than half the world's gross domestic product and over 60 per cent of the global population
    'But if that is the case then Russia needs to take the action to put in place all that has been agreed - getting Russian troops out of Ukraine, getting heavy weapons out of Ukraine, respecting all the agreements and only recognising one legitimate set of Ukrainian elections,' he told reporters.
    'If those things don't happen then the European Union, Britain included, must keep in place the sanctions and the pressure so that we don't have this kind of conflict in our continent.'
    French President Francois Hollande, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso and European Council president Herman van Rompuy were part of the latest peace push - which also focused on a gas dispute which has raised fears of energy supplies to Europe being affected.
    Further talks between officials will take place later today in a bid to thrash out formal agreements.
    Official parliamentary elections have been called for October 26, with local polls - including in disputed areas - for December 7, but rebels have declared their own vote on November 2.
    A Downing Street source said: 'It was a pretty frank meeting. On the one hand there are signs that Putin doesn't want a frozen conflict, but I think we remain cautious that we see that progress on the ground.'
    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister David Cameron held talks on the sidelines of the summit in Milan
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    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister David Cameron held talks on the sidelines of the summit in Milan
    Mr Putin 'wouldn't commit' to denouncing the rival polls. 'Clearly those are not the ones agreed by the Ukrainian government; they are therefore not in line with Ukrainian law and we all need to be clear that we'll denounce them and won't recognise them.'
    Before leaving Italy, Mr Cameron had face-to-face talks with President Nursultan Nazarbayev, of Kazakhstan, about the latest situation. He also met his newly-elected Polish and Swedish counterparts, Ewa Kopacz and Stephan Lofven.More than 3,600 people have died in eastern Ukraine since fighting broke out in mid-April when armed separatists declared they were setting up their own state.
    Although Putin announced this week that Russian troops near the border with Ukraine would be pulled back, Western officials want to see clear evidence that Moscow is acting on this.
    'Vladimir Putin said very clearly he doesn't want a frozen conflict and doesn't want a divided Ukraine. But if that's the case, then Russia now needs to take the actions to put in place all that has been agreed,' said British Prime Minister David Cameron.
    'If those things don't happen, then clearly the European Union, Britain included, must keep in place the sanctions and the pressure so we don't have this sort of conflict in our continent.'

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    · · · · · · · · · · ·

    Russia and Ukraine Gas Agreement

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    President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia said that he and President Petro O. Poroshenko of Ukraine had agreed on the terms of natural gas supplies “at least for the winter period.”






    Obama Fights Ebola’s Political Fallout

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    The fear of Ebola has become a political factor in the United States, where President Barack Obama’s Democratic Party is fighting to retain control of the Senate in congressional elections next month. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports the one fatality from Ebola on U.S. soil and two additional cases are posing a political challenge for Obama.

    UK ‘lighting fire under EU’, says minister

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    Philip Hammond, foreign secretary, says ‘putative superstate’ enjoys only fragile consent
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    Page 8

    МВД Украины уволило 17 тысяч сотрудников в Донецкой и Луганской областях - Коммерсантъ

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    РБК Украина

    МВД Украины уволило 17 тысяч сотрудников в Донецкой и Луганской областях
    Коммерсантъ
    Руководство МВД Украины уволило около 17 тысяч сотрудников, работавших в Донецкой и Луганской областях. Об этом заявил замминистра внутренних дел Николай Величкович, сообщает ИТАР-ТАСС в ночь на 18 октября. «Мы уволили 17 тыс. сотрудников милиции в этих областях за ...
    МВД Украины уволило около 17 тыс. сотрудников милиции в ДонбассеВзгляд
    МВД Украины уволило 17 тысяч сотрудников милиции в Донецкой и Луганской областяхПолит.ру
    17 тысяч сотрудников МВД уволены на ДонбассеКорреспондент.net
    новостной портал iPress.ua -GORDONUA.COM
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    Vladimir Putin ups the ante with reminders Russia is a nuclear power - Sydney Morning Herald

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    Sydney Morning Herald

    Vladimir Putin ups the ante with reminders Russia is a nuclear power
    Sydney Morning Herald
    New Zealand's Prime Minister, John Key, was enjoying some friendly banter with his Russiancounterpart when they stumbled on to a distinctly unfriendly subject: nuclear war. It was a lunch break at an international summit, as Key related to me earlier ...
    Russia-Australia relations: "West needs Russia and Russia needs the West"The Voice of Russia

    all 80 news articles »

    Ebola Fears Reach Pentagon After Woman Became Ill on Shuttle Bus - NBCNews.com

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    CBS Local

    Ebola Fears Reach Pentagon After Woman Became Ill on Shuttle Bus
    NBCNews.com
    A huge Pentagon parking lot remains closed and cordoned off, and a bus full of Marines is temporarily quarantined as medical personnel attempt to determine why a woman who boarded the bus suddenly became ill. The woman, a private contractor for the ...
    Ebola scare at Pentagon after woman vomits in parking lotReuters
    Pentagon reacts to sick woman, claimed Africa tripseattlepi.com
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    Powerful Hurricane Gonzalo approaching Bermuda

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    HAMILTON, Bermuda (AP) -- Hurricane Gonzalo roared toward Bermuda as a powerful Category 3 storm on Friday and the head of the tiny British territory urged people to seek high ground due to a potential storm surge of 10 feet (3 meters)....

    Obama to name longtime political aide as 'Ebola czar,' bypassing senior health ... - Fox News

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    Fox News

    Obama to name longtime political aide as 'Ebola czar,' bypassing senior health ...
    Fox News
    Responding to growing calls to appoint an "Ebola czar" to lead America's battle against the deadly virus, President Obama plans to name Ron Klain, a longtime political hand with no apparent medical or health care background. He did, however, serve as ...
    Obama names Ron Klain as Ebola 'czar'USA TODAY
    Obama picks ex-aide Klain as coordinator for Ebola responseChicago Tribune
    Obama to Tap Former VP Chief of Staff Ron Klain as Ebola 'Czar'NBCNews.com
    Indiana's NewsCenter -Boston Herald -National Post
    all 3,689 news articles »

    Ebola outbreak and finding patient zero - Beta Wired

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    Boston Herald

    Ebola outbreak and finding patient zero
    Beta Wired
    3 According to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Ebola's patient zero is a 2-year old child who died on December 6, 2013. This started the Ebola outbreak that is currently going on in West Africa. After three weeks, the child's mother, ...
    Would A Travel Ban Contain the Spread of Ebola?Peter Greenberg.com Travel News
    UN document admits WHO badly fumbled response to Ebola, says top officials ...The Tribune
    Ebola death toll soars to 4555 out of 9216: WHOBangkok Post
    Thegardenisland.com -Sun Sentinel
    all 2,802 news articles »
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    Page 9

    Isis and Ebola: the twin threats that reveal our impotence

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    In our sense of terror, Islamic State and the virus feed each other. But from airports to airstrikes, the response is glaringly inadequate
    They are dark, unseen enemies, come from far away and they are scaring us witless. Isis is not a disease, and Ebola is not a terror organisation. But fear is their common currency: intentional for one, inevitable for the other. Today they can seem to be working in tandem, a pincer movement paralysing the worlds governments as it terrifies the worlds people. Each time one advances, the space for the other expands.
    From the vantage point of the west, the similarities are obvious. It starts with a menace that was once obscure and understood by few, with a name that keeps shifting (is it Isis, Isil or IS?) or a pronunciation that is uncertain (is it ee-boh-la or ebb-ola?), and which suddenly becomes all-pervasive, threatening catastrophe.
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    Ebola: What Should We Do Now? - Wall Street Journal

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    Wall Street Journal

    Ebola: What Should We Do Now?
    Wall Street Journal
    An Ebola burial team loads the body of a woman onto a truck for cremation in Monrovia, Liberia, on Oct. 10. Getty Images. By. Larry Brilliant. Oct. 17, 2014 2:57 p.m. ET. 0 COMMENTS. When Zafar Hussain arrived at the train station, he thought he'd entered ...
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    Ebola-infected nurse in stable condition at specialist Maryland hospital 

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    • We fully intend to have this patient walk out of this hospital
    • Health worker in voluntary quarantine on Caribbean cruise ship
    A nurse who contracted the Ebola virus while treating Thomas Eric Duncan is stable and resting comfortably after being transferred to a specialised hospital in Maryland, leaving the embattled Dallas hospital where she works free of an Ebola patient for the first time in nearly three weeks.
    Nina Pham, 26, is quite stable now and resting comfortably, Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) said at a press conference on Friday.
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    America's Strange Love Affair With the Word Czar - New York Magazine

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    New York Magazine

    America's Strange Love Affair With the Word Czar
    New York Magazine
    Ebola Czar. Ebola Czar. Ebola Czar. Thank you, gods of political absurdity, for your annual tithe to the gods of linguistic fun. I've been wandering around my house repeating it all morning: Ebola Czar! Give it a little Spanish lilt and you've got a credible political ...
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