Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Airing Putin’s Dirty Laundry - The American Interest: "Clearly, Putin is the threat, and to counter the threat, Putin needs to be weakened and removed from power. This requires effectively interrupting the flow of support he receives from key forces inside Russia, including the Russian people... The Obama Administration seems unwilling to mobilize a large sustained effort to destroy Putin’s power. This is a mistake, for the case to be made against him is not ambiguous... The real question may be: will a courageous portion of the U.S. Congress bring Putin to his knees?"

Clearly, Putin is the threat, and to counter the threat, Putin needs to be weakened and removed from power. This requires effectively interrupting the flow of support he receives from key forces inside Russia, including the Russian people.
Putin’s downfall can be achieved by exploiting the contradictions within his rule: its reliance on corruption, fear, and the perception that he is the true expression of Russian nationalism. He has used these elements masterfully, but in reality they conflict with one another and are inherently unstable.
Putin’s power is based upon suppressing criticism with fear and violence and buying the loyalty of his oligarchic cronies with resources stolen from the Russian people. The reality of the Putin regime means that he never has been a true Russian patriot; his power depends on his being a parasite, stealing wealth and freedom from the Russian people.
Publicly and continuously documenting this corruption—this fundamental contradiction in the Putin regime—strikes at the heart of Putin’s power. If he is increasingly seen as nothing more than the king of the thieves, stealing from every Russian, his posture as a Russian patriot and a legitimate world leader will be discredited. Similarly, publishing information about the individuals within Putin’s corrupt network will weaken them and can make them subject to international sanctions and legal action outside of Russia. Finally, documenting the non-Russian individuals and institutions that enable Putin’s corrupt oligarchy to retain its power will open these institutions and individuals to the same risks and stigma that settles on Putin. This will further destabilize the foundation of his tyranny. It is even possible that some of the individuals thought to be holding wealth for Putin himself will realize that, if he were gone, it could belong to them. The rats may start feeding on themselves... 
The Obama Administration seems unwilling to mobilize a large sustained effort to destroy Putin’s power. This is a mistake, for the case to be made against him is not ambiguous... 
The real question may be: will a courageous portion of the U.S. Congress bring Putin to his knees?

Airing Putin’s Dirty Laundry - The American Interest


Airing Putin’s Dirty Laundry - The American Interest

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Despite the hopes of Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, Russia has returned as a security threat to its neighbors, to the Unites States, and to our allies. No one believes that Russia is now on a path to becoming a peaceful liberal democracy that respects national sovereignty, human rights, and free speech.
The new Russian threat is not grounded in Communist ideology. It is led by one man, Vladimir Putin. He has manipulated a surge in Russian nationalism and sits at the top of an extensive oligarchy that presents itself as the legitimate expression of the Russian people. His grip on power remains strong despite international criticism, the sanctions employed by the Obama Administration, and a drop in energy revenues. Could the U.S. Congress mount a more effective challenge to Putin? How?
The urgency of the threat is substantial and growing. On February 12 Putin allowed (or directed) Russian troops to continue their attack on the beleaguered Ukrainian city of 
Debaltseve
, notwithstanding the ceasefire agreement that had gone into effect that day. On February 14 a Russian bomber 
headed
toward British airspace. The plane only withdrew when met by the British Air Force. Then on February 27 Boris Nemtsov, the toughest of Putin’s critics and a leader of the Russian opposition was gunned down in cold blood on the streets of central Moscow. Although Putin’s role in this assassination is not clear and never likely to be so, 
accusationsabound
. More recently Putin has announced that he was willing to involve 
nuclear
 forces in Russia’s annexation of Crimea, 
invited
 the North Korean despot Kim Jong-un to the Kremlin, and 
permitted
 the sale of S-300 anti-aircraft missiles to Iran.
This past February the European Union committee of the UK’s House of Lords noted with regret that Europe had “
sleepwalked
” into the Ukrainian crisis. Europe, they said, had acted on the mistaken assumption that Putin was on his way to becoming the leader of a democratic country. British Prime Minister David Cameron 
denied
 that Europe was at fault but acknowledged that it was time for the West to respond. The blame, he asserted, “lies absolutely squarely with Vladimir Putin and Russia. . . . What we need to do now is deliver the strongest possible message . . . that what has happened is unacceptable.” Cameron is right, but it is time to think clearly about the message Putin has received so far. Criticisms of Putin and sanctions aimed weakening him seem to have strengthened his support among many Russians.
Clearly, Putin is the threat, and to counter the threat, Putin needs to be weakened and removed from power. This requires effectively interrupting the flow of support he receives from key forces inside Russia, including the Russian people.
Putin’s downfall can be achieved by exploiting the contradictions within his rule: its reliance on corruption, fear, and the perception that he is the true expression of Russian nationalism. He has used these elements masterfully, but in reality they conflict with one another and are inherently unstable.
Putin’s power is based upon suppressing criticism with fear and violence and buying the loyalty of his oligarchic cronies with resources stolen from the Russian people. The reality of the Putin regime means that he never has been a true Russian patriot; his power depends on his being a parasite, stealing wealth and freedom from the Russian people.
Publicly and continuously documenting this corruption—this fundamental contradiction in the Putin regime—strikes at the heart of Putin’s power. If he is increasingly seen as nothing more than the king of the thieves, stealing from every Russian, his posture as a Russian patriot and a legitimate world leader will be discredited. Similarly, publishing information about the individuals within Putin’s corrupt network will weaken them and can make them subject to international sanctions and legal action outside of Russia. Finally, documenting the non-Russian individuals and institutions that enable Putin’s corrupt oligarchy to retain its power will open these institutions and individuals to the same risks and stigma that settles on Putin. This will further destabilize the foundation of his tyranny. It is even possible that some of the individuals thought to be holding wealth for Putin himself will realize that, if he were gone, it could belong to them. The rats may start feeding on themselves.
There is already much information in the public realm that can be deployed against Putin. In the introduction to her 2014 book, 
Putin’s Kleptocracy: Who Owns Russia?
, Karen Dawisha states, “I conclude that from the beginning Putin and his circle sought to create an authoritarian regime ruled by a close-knit cabal…who used democracy for decoration rather than direction.” Her book, based on extensive 
research
, traces Putin’s ascension from a mid-level KGB agent to the tyrannical President of the now-expanding Russia. Summarizing the book in the 
New York Review of Books,
 Anne Applebaum 
writes
 that “instead of attempting to explain the failures of the reformers and intellectuals who tried to carry out radical change [in Russia], we ought instead to focus on the remarkable story of one group of unrepentant, single-minded, revanchist KGB officers…. [T]hey stole money that belonged to the Russian state, took it abroad for safety, reinvested it in Russia, and then, piece by piece, took over the state themselves. Once in charge, they brought back Soviet methods of political control—the only ones they knew—updated for the modern era.”
Dawisha is just one scholar in this area, and whole archives are coming online. One example of this can be found here at the Hudson Institute, where the 
Kleptocracy
 Initiative has identified a significant group of outside experts on Putin’s crimes. These private reports are important, but releasing such information from an institution of great stature and power holds the greatest promise of weakening Putin swiftly.
The Obama Administration seems unwilling to mobilize a large sustained effort to destroy Putin’s power. This is a mistake, for the case to be made against him is not ambiguous. Everyone willing to look knows the truth about Putin’s Russia, the only question is whether that truth can be marshaled to bring contempt and repudiation. When Putin is contemptible, he will fall. This is precisely the area in which the U.S. has profound moral standing. This is the area in which America’s soft power advantage can be used for very hard ends.
Congress has the necessary stature to publish—under its authority—the truth about Putin’s Russia. With the eager help of outside experts, congressional staff can easily gather public information and verify that it is reliable in relation to classified government intelligence (a prudent step when the subject is a KGB-trained master of disinformation). Both Democrats and Republicans could get behind such an effort, as well as members from several committees. Yet it does not require a large and unwieldy group. In fact, even one Senator or House Member could, with the aid of a competent staffer, gather the details from public sources and release them several times a year.
There are two essential ingredients for success in this strategy against Putin—focus and steadfastness. The point to be made repeatedly and relentlessly is that Putin is a criminal, not a legitimate leader of Russia.
Some may complain that there are many corrupt oligarchs in the world, and moral consistency requires they should all be confronted. Nonsense. Putin is the most dangerous, and perhaps the most vulnerable; therefore he should be singled out. Creating many targets at the same time will only blunt the impact of this effort. Moreover, if this attack against Putin succeeds, the method can then be turned to other dangerous oligarchs—in Iran and China.
Many, especially among the elite, will complain that this is not the “proper” way to conduct foreign policy. Foreign policy cannot be accomplished by public attacks on the legitimacy of a foreign leader, and in any case they ought to be conducted by the President. Perhaps…but telling the truth about Vladimir Putin does not deplete the authority of the President. In fact, there are advantages to this kind of “soft power” or asymmetrical warfare (to our advantage) if led by Congress. It will be characterized less as a personal battle between leaders if it comes from the branch of government closest to the American people, and it can rest on sources national and international that are much broader than the executive agencies. Of course this strategy is not traditional; it is an alternative to the old ways, which always rested in some way on armed conflict. Putin will probably make threats (and deploy his American lobbyists). If so, this may be a sign that he sees serious danger. But each of his threats should be brushed aside or met with reports of new bank account numbers, new details of crony corruption, and new evidence of crimes against the Russian people.
Others may be concerned that if Putin falls, his second-level oligarchs will simply replace him. But they are unlikely, even as a group, to have the particularly dangerous combination of desires and abilities that Putin possesses. One wolf is more dangerous than a hundred cockroaches.
The real question may be: will a courageous portion of the U.S. Congress bring Putin to his knees?
John P. Walters is Hudson Institute’s chief operating officer. He was Director of Drug Control Policy for President George W. Bush.
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· · · · ·

Грязное белье Путина напоказ | ИноСМИ

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05/05/2015
Вопреки надеждам президентов Джорджа Буша и Барака Обамы Россия снова создает угрозу безопасности своих соседей, Соединенных Штатов и наших союзников. Никто не верит, что эта страна сегодня идет путем становления мирной либеральной демократии, соблюдающей национальный суверенитет, права человека и свободу слова.
Новая российская угроза основана не на коммунистической идеологии. Во главе ее идет один человек — Владимир Путин. Он манипулирует усиливающимся российским национализмом и возглавляет обширную олигархию, которая представляет себя в качестве законного представителя народа. Он крепко держит в руках власть, несмотря на международную критику, на санкции, введенные администрацией Обамы, и на снижение доходов от продажи энергоресурсов. Может ли американский конгресс бросить Путину более эффективный вызов? И как это сделать?
Это серьезная и безотлагательная проблема. 12 февраля Путин позволил (или приказал) российским войскам продолжить наступление на осажденный украинский город Дебальцево, несмотря на соглашение о прекращении огня, вступившее в силу в тот день. 14 февраля российский бомбардировщик направился к воздушному пространству Британии. Он улетел прочь лишь тогда, когда его встретили британские ВВС. А 27 февраля на улице в центре Москвы был хладнокровно застрелен один из самых жестких критиков Путина и лидер российской оппозиции Борис Немцов. Хотя роль Путина в этом убийстве неясна и вряд ли когда-нибудь будет выяснена, обвинений в его адрес звучит немало. Недавно Путин заявил, что был готов использовать российские ядерные силы во время аннексии Крыма. Он пригласил в Кремль северокорейского деспота Ким Чен Ына и разрешил поставить в Иран зенитно-ракетные комплексы С-300.
В феврале комитет палаты лордов по делам Евросоюза с сожалением отметил, что Европа в период кризиса на Украине повела себя «как лунатик». Европа, отметили члены комитета, исходила из ошибочного предположения о том, что Путин стремится стать лидером демократической страны. Британский премьер-министр Дэвид Кэмерон отрицал вину Европы, однако признал, что Западу пора отреагировать. По его словам, «вина целиком и полностью лежит на Владимире Путине и на России. ... Нам сейчас надо подать мощнейший сигнал о том... что произошедшее неприемлемо». Кэмерон прав, но надо задуматься и о том, какие сигналы получает Путин. Похоже, что критика в его адрес и направленные на его ослабление санкции только усиливают поддержку президенту со стороны многих россиян.
Безусловно, Путин представляет угрозу, и чтобы противодействовать этой угрозе, его надо ослабить и отстранить от власти. Для этого необходимо остановить тот поток поддержки, которую он получает от ключевых сил внутри России, в том числе, от российского народа.
Падения Путина можно добиться за счет противоречий, существующих в его системе правления. Это расчет на коррупцию, на страх людей и представление о том, что он является истинным выражением российского национализма. Путин мастерски пользуется этими элементами, но на самом деле, они находятся в конфликте друг с другом и создают изначальную нестабильность.
Власть Путина базируется на подавлении критики силой и страхом, а также на покупке лояльности его дружков из олигархического клана за счет ресурсов, украденных у российского народа. В действительности Путин никогда не был истинным патриотом России, а его власть основана на паразитировании, на краже богатства и свободы у российского народа.
Постоянное фиксирование фактов этой коррупции и придание им огласки наносит удар в самое сердце путинской власти и влияния, поскольку именно коррупция создает главное противоречие в режиме Путина. Если Путина начнут считать не более чем главой воровской шайки, которая крадет у каждого россиянина, его позиции как российского патриота и легитимного мирового лидера будут ослаблены. Точно так же, публикация информации о приближенных Путина из его коррумпированной системы дискредитирует этих людей; они подвергнутся международным санкциям и правовым действиям за пределами России. И наконец, выявление иностранцев и зарубежных институтов, помогающих коррумпированной путинской олигархии сохранять свою власть, подвергнет их такому же риску и позору, которому подвергается сам Путин. Это еще больше расшатает основы его тирании. Возможно даже, что некоторые люди, предположительно хранящие богатства Путина, осознают, что если он уйдет, эти богатства могут достаться им самим. И вот тогда крысы начнут сами себя пожирать.
В открытом доступе уже имеется немало информации, которую можно использовать против Путина. Во введении к своей изданной в 2014 году книге Putin’s Kleptocracy: Who Owns Russia? (Путинская клептократия. Кто владеет Россией?) Карен Давиша (Karen Dawisha) заявляет: «Я прихожу к выводу, что с самого начала Путин и его окружение стремились к созданию авторитарного режима под руководством тесно спаянной клики... которая использовала демократию в качестве ширмы, а не руководства к действию». В своей книге, которая основана на обширных исследованиях, Давиша прослеживает восхождение Путина, который из агента КГБ среднего звена превратился в тирана-президента расширяющейся ныне России. В своем обзоре этой книги, опубликованном в New York Review of Books, Энн Аппельбаум (Anne Applebaum) пишет: «Вместо попыток объяснить неудачи реформаторов и интеллектуалов, пытавшихся осуществить в России радикальные преобразования, нам следует сосредоточить внимание на весьма примечательной истории одной группы нераскаявшихся, целеустремленных и настроенных на реванш сотрудников КГБ.... Они крали деньги, принадлежащие российскому государству, вывозили их в безопасные места за рубеж, затем снова инвестировали их в Россию, и таким образом, шаг за шагом они захватили власть в государстве. А придя к власти, они вернули советские методы политического контроля, поскольку знали только их, и приспособили эти методы к требованиям современной эпохи».
Давиша это лишь одна из многих специалистов в этой области, а сейчас в интернет попадают целые архивы. Один из примеров этого можно найти здесь, в Институте Хадсона (Hudson Institute), где была создана так называемая «Инициатива по клептократии» (Kleptocracy Initiative), которая выявила целую группу сторонних экспертов по путинским преступлениям. Их отдельные доклады очень важны, но если весь этот массив информации опубликует столь авторитетный и влиятельный институт, это может чрезвычайно быстро и мощно ослабить Путина.
Похоже, что администрация Обамы не желает прилагать настойчивые усилия к тому, чтобы уничтожить путинскую власть. Это ошибка, ибо доводы против него можно выдвинуть вполне определенные и однозначные. Любой желающий узнать правду о путинском режиме узнает ее, и единственный вопрос заключается в том, как использовать эту правду, дабы вызвать презрение и осуждение. Когда станет широко известно, насколько низок Путин, он падет. Именно в этой области у США прочные нравственные позиции. Именно в этой сфере мягкую силу Америки можно использовать в очень жестких целях.
У конгресса есть необходимое влияние и полномочия, чтобы опубликовать правду о путинском режиме. При поддержке экспертов со стороны аппарат конгресса легко может собрать находящуюся в открытом доступе информацию и проверить ее достоверность, сличив с секретными сведениями правительства (это разумный шаг, поскольку работа будет вестись против обученного КГБ мастера дезинформации). Такие усилия могут поддержать как республиканцы, так и демократы, а также члены ряда комитетов. Но создавать крупную и громоздкую группу не следует. На самом деле, даже один сенатор или член палаты представителей при помощи компетентного помощника может собирать информацию из открытых источников и публиковать ее несколько раз в год.
Есть две важнейших составляющих в этой антипутинской стратегии, которые обеспечат успех — сосредоточенность и упорство. Надо постоянно и беспощадно отмечать и подчеркивать, что Путин преступник, а не законный лидер России.
Кто-то может пожаловаться, что коррумпированных олигархов в мире немало, и правила нравственной последовательности требуют вести борьбу с ними со всеми. Это чепуха. Путин самый опасный, а возможно, и самый уязвимый среди них. Следовательно, его надо выделить особо. Если одновременно вести огонь по множеству мишеней, воздействие на них будет слабым. Более того, если атака на Путина принесет успех, эту методику можно будет распространить и на других опасных олигархов — в Иране и Китае.
Многие, особенно в рядах элиты, будут жаловаться на то, что это «ненадлежащий» способ проведения внешней политики. Внешнюю политику нельзя проводить методом публичных нападок на легитимность зарубежного руководителя, и в любом случае, внешнюю политику должен проводить президент. Возможно. Но правда о Владимире Путине не ослабляет авторитет президента. На самом деле, в такой «мягкой силе» или асимметричной войне появляются преимущества, если ее возглавляет конгресс. В ней будет меньше элементов личностной борьбы между лидерами, если проводить ее будет ветвь власти, которая ближе всего к американскому народу. Кроме того, в ее основе будут лежать национальные и международные источники, которые гораздо обширнее, чем органы исполнительной власти. Конечно, это нетрадиционная стратегия; это альтернатива старым методам и способам действий, которые всегда в той или иной мере основывались на вооруженном конфликте. Путин в ответ может применить угрозы (и использовать своих американских лоббистов). Если так, это будет означать, что он в серьезной опасности. Но каждую из его угроз надо отметать в сторону либо встречать информацией о новых банковских счетах, новыми подробностями о коррупции в путинском окружении, новыми доказательствами преступлений против российского народа.
Кого-то может обеспокоить то, что если Путин падет, его просто заменят олигархи второго уровня. Но даже в составе единой группировки они вряд ли будут обладать тем опасным сочетанием желаний и возможностей, которое есть у Путина. Один волк опаснее сотни тараканов.
На самом деле, вопрос заключается в следующем: сможет ли отважная часть американского конгресса поставить Путина на колени?
Джон Уолтерс — главный операционный директор Института Хадсона. При президенте Джордже Буше он руководил управлением по борьбе с наркотиками.
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Грязное белье Путина напоказ - inoСМИ.Ru

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inoСМИ.Ru

Грязное белье Путина напоказ
inoСМИ.Ru
12 февраля Путин позволил (или приказал) российским войскам продолжить наступление на осажденный украинский город Дебальцево, несмотря на соглашение о прекращении огня, вступившее в силу в тот день. 14 февраля российский бомбардировщик направился к воздушному ...
Политолог: Войной против Украины Путин уничтожает РФ быстрыми темпамиДиалог.UA - Всегда два мнения

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Putin's move boomerangs against him - gulfnews.com

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gulfnews.com

Putin's move boomerangs against him
gulfnews.com
For years, Russian President Vladimir Putin has wielded Europe's dependence on his country's natural gas as a foreign-policy weapon, without fear of the European Union calling his bluff — until now. With the EU launching an antitrust case against the ...

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СМИ сообщили о срыве сделки Израиля с Украиной после вмешательства Путина - РБК

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РБК

СМИ сообщили о срыве сделки Израиля с Украиной после вмешательства Путина
РБК
Когда состоялся разговор Путина с Нетаньяху, не уточняется. Агентство пишет, что в октябре 2014 года во время визита в Израиль главы украинского МИДа Павла Климкина он заявил местным журналистам, что его страна очень заинтересована в поставках израильских беспилотников, ... 
Bloomberg: Нетаньяху отменил поставки дронов Киеву после звонка ПутинаГазета.Ru

16:43 / 05.05.2015 Израиль, Нетаньяху, Путин, Россия, УкраинаСделка Израиля с Украиной сорвалась после вмешательства Владимира Путина ...Дни.Ру
СМИ: Путин сорвал сделку между Израилем и Украиной по беспилотникамИА REGNUM 
Свободная пресса-
 http://glavpost.com/ (Блог)-Forbes Россия 

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Atkins: Finally, Obama takes on cop-race crisis - Boston Herald

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Boston Herald

Atkins: Finally, Obama takes on cop-race crisis
Boston Herald
TOUGH JOB: President Obama speaks at Lehman College in New York yesterday, a week after violence and looting erupted in Baltimore. Obama launched a foundation to take up his campaign to help minority young men. 1. Tuesday, May 5, 2015.

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Obama to Name Top Marine General as Nation's Top Military Officer 

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President Barack Obama is expected to name Marine General Joseph Dunford as the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Tuesday, replacing Army General Martin Dempsey as the nation's top uniformed military advisor. Dunford currently serves as the Marine's commanding officer, a post he assumed just late last year. The 59-year Dunford previously served as commander of all U.S. and international coalition forces in Afghanistan from 2013 to 2014, overseeing the ongoing...

Lenin's lover? Picture of woman described as his true love uncovered 

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Russian revolutionary known as ‘primeval force of the black Earth’ by contemporaries was close associate of Lenin and his wife, and played important role while in exile
A London-based academic has uncovered a photograph of the woman described by some as Vladimir Lenin’s true love and the “primeval force of the black earth” by her contemporaries, after the image was lost for nearly a century.
Dr Robert Henderson, a Russian history expert at Queen Mary University London, uncovered a photograph of Apollinariya Yakubova – a Russian revolutionary who fled to King’s Cross in London at the turn of the 20th century.
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France's Le Pen strikes back at daughter after party suspension

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PARIS (Reuters) - National Front founder Jean-Marie Le Pen hit back at daughter and party leader Marine on Tuesday after she suspended him from the far-right French movement, saying he hopes she loses the 2017 presidential election.






  

Canada poised to pass anti-terror legislation despite widespread outrage - The Guardian

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The Guardian

Canada poised to pass anti-terror legislation despite widespread outrage
The Guardian
“This is about the soul of the country and a question of whether we understand what Canada stands for – for ourselves and what we represent around the world.” Thomas Mulcair, leader of the opposition New Democratic Party, denounced the bill as ... 

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The Nazi doctor who experimented on gay people – and Britain helped to escape justice 

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The Danish authorities have still not explained why Carl Værnet, who escaped to Argentina with British collusion, was shielded from prosecution
Today is the 70th anniversary of Denmark’s liberation from Nazi rule by British troops. The Danes are rightly proud of their anti-Nazi resistance and their heroism in saving the lives of almost all their Jewish citizens. But Denmark also had a dirty little secret that remained hidden for many decades.
A Danish Nazi, SS Dr Carl Værnet, conducted medical experiments on gay concentration camp prisoners. Unlike most other Nazi doctors, he was never put on trial at Nuremburg. Instead, with Danish and British collusion, he was able to escape to Argentina, where he lived openly and continued his research into methods for the eradication of homosexuality.
Værnet was given a permit to go to Sweden and was even paid a state stipend
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ISIS Claims Responsibility for Attack at Texas Event Showing Muhammad Cartoons 

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The Islamic State called the assailants in Garland “soldiers of the caliphate,” but whether the extremist group was involved remained unclear.
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Joints for joints: the company linking marijuana tourists with places to smoke – video 

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Despite recreational use of marijuana being legal in some parts of the country, smoking in public isn't. That's why Sean Roby started budandbreakfast.com, a cannabis-friendly Airbnb-style website tailored to the booming pot tourism industry Continue reading...

Amazing Footage Of Life In Berlin In July 1945

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A powerful video in color of the decimated city of Berlin, shot in July 1945, just months after Nazi Germany’s defeat in World War II.

ISIS claims responsibility for Texas attack - CBS News

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CBS News

ISIS claims responsibility for Texas attack
CBS News
The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) claimed responsibility Tuesday for the attack on a Texas art exhibit and contest featuring drawings of the Prophet Muhammad. The terror group's official radio station made the claim without giving any details, and U.S ...
ISIS claim responsibility for shooting at Texas Muhammad cartoon contestFox News
Garland shooting: What we know about Elton Simpson and Nadir SoofiCNN
ISIS claims credit for attack on convention in TexasAL.com
CBS Local -Valley News Live -SFGate
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EMP Device Used to Disable Possible Explosives Following Garland Attack 

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Reporters told to disable electronics by police before “electronic pulses”.
Several reporters at the scene of Sunday’s terror attack in Garland, Texas, stated that police used an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) device when examining the suspected shooters’ vehicle for explosives.
According to NBC 5’s Kevin Cokely, an explosion sound was heard from the suspects’ vehicle shortly after the police bomb squad told media personnel to disable all electronics.
“Garland police had warned of electronic magnetic pulse…” Cokely said on Twitter.
Following the explosion, NBC 5’s Jocelyn Lockwood, who captured the event on film, said that police refused to comment on the sound’s origin.
A separate reporter, Fox 4’s Zahid Arab, told Twitter followers that police had warned of further “electronic pulses” after the initial explosion.
Technology experts, including the ACLU’s Christopher Soghoian, debated on social media over whether Garland police or federal agents were responsible for the device.
Police later stated that no explosives were found in the vehicle but that several suspicious items were detonated. Since the incident, no comment has been made by law enforcement on the reported EMP device.
Infowars was unable to reach the Garland Police Department’s public and media relations representative for clarification at the time of publishing.
        
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Wisconsin woman saves 2 of her children after being shot 3 times - CNN

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CNN

Wisconsin woman saves 2 of her children after being shot 3 times
CNN
(CNN) Sometimes a mother's love can make all the difference in the world. It can even save lives. Erin Stoffel shuffled her 7-year-old son Ezra and 5-year-old daughter Selah off a pedestrian bridge in Menasha, Wisconsin, after a distraught gunman randomly ...

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Obama: Rebuild Trust Between Minorities, Police

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President Barack Obama has called for the rebuilding of trust between police and minority communities in the wake of last week's riots in Baltimore over the death of a young black man who died after receiving a spinal injury while in police custody. Appearing on CBS-TV's popular The Late Show with David Letterman, Obama said the lingering effects of slavery and racial discrimination continue to have a profound effect on many African-American communities. "What you have are...

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Gunman in Texas Shooting Was FBI Suspect in Jihad Inquiry - New York Times

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New York Times

Gunman in Texas Shooting Was FBI Suspect in Jihad Inquiry
New York Times
GARLAND, Tex. — One was an extrovert drawn to basketball as well as to Islam, who had been identified by the F.B.I. as a jihadist terrorism suspect and was once a regular at Friday Prayer at a mosque near his Phoenix apartment. The other was more quiet, ...

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Front National family feud goes nuclear as Jean-Marie Le Pen disowns Marine 

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Front National co-founder tells daughter to marry and change her name after being suspended from party over comments belittling the Holocaust
The family feud between the far-right Front National leader, Marine Le Pen , and her father, Jean-Marie, has turned to all-out war after he disowned her, told her to marry and change her name, and threatened legal action following his suspension from the party.
Le Pen senior, who co-founded the FN in 1972, was suspended from the party on Monday night overinflammatory comments he made belittling the Holocaust and lauding the Nazi-collaborationist Vichy regime. The 86-year-old also faces being stripped of his role as honorary president of the party.
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France, Saudi discuss multi-billion-euro projects - The Guardian Nigeria

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The Guardian Nigeria

France, Saudi discuss multi-billion-euro projects
The Guardian Nigeria
490px-Saudi_Arabia_map France and Saudi Arabia are discussing economic projects worth tens of billions of euros, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Tuesday. “If concluded, these 20 projects would be worth tens of billions of euros,” Fabius told ...

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'Future attacks are going to be harsher'

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ISIS claims responsibility for the attack outside the Prophet Mohammed cartoon contest in Garland, Texas -- and warns of more attacks to come. | WHO WERE GUNMEN?
    


Was cartoon shooting inevitable?

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It was only a matter of time before this would happen in the United States.
    


Opinion: Free speech or hate speech?

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Hillary Clinton to Lay Out Immigration Reform Plan

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Hillary Clinton intends to draw an early distinction with Republicans on immigration reform, pointing to a pathway to citizenship as an essential part of any overhaul in Congress. Clinton was laying the foundation of her immigration agenda Tuesday in her first stop in Nevada since launching her presidential campaign. After years of delays in Congress, Latinos and immigration activists are watching Clinton's statements closely for signs of how she might break a legislative logjam on...

Turkey Deporting Would-Be IS Militant Family To Moldova

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Turkish officials say a British couple and their four young children who were detained last month on suspicion of trying to join Islamic State militants in Syria will be deported to Moldova.

Obesity epidemic to blame for record number of gout sufferers

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Gout, an ailment typically associated with elderly, red-faced men gorging on rich food and alcohol, was said to afflict King Henry VIII. But NHS figures have shown a steep rise in young sufferers.

Tony Blair becomes surprise character witness at ex-Israel PM's corruption trial 

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Former UK PM says relationship with Ehud Olmert, convicted of receiving $600,000 from a US businessman, was ‘based on friendship and trust’
Tony Blair has made a surprise intervention in the corruption case of former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert, writing a letter to the court in support of his plea not to be sent to prison.
The glowing character reference for Olmert, who was convicted in March of receiving $600,000 (£400,000) in cash-stuffed envelopes between 1993 and 2002 from an American businessman, Morris Talansky, was one of several produced by Olmert’s defence team – another being supplied by the former Mossad head Meir Dagan.
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SurveyMonkey chief David Goldberg died of head injury due to treadmill fall 

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Dave Goldberg fell while exercising on holiday in Mexico on Friday, a local official has revealed
SurveyMonkey chief executive David Goldberg died from a head injury sustained after falling off a treadmill at a private resort in Mexico on Friday, according to a spokesman for the local prosecutor’s office.
The 47-year-old, who became head of the online survey company in 2009, was found on the floor of the gym in the Four Seasons resort in Punta Mita by his brother, Robert, approximately three hours after he was thought to have left his room.
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Russian dissident Vladimir Bukovsky misses court hearing due to illness 

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Bukovsky, 72, who fled to UK from Soviet Union in 1976, is charged with 11 counts of possessing indecent and prohibited images of children
The veteran Russian dissident Vladimir Bukovsky has failed to appear in court over charges of possessing indecent images of children.
Magistrates were told that Bukovsky, 72, had been flown to Germany after reportedly suffering renal failure for medical treatment at a private hospital.
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Contributing Op-Ed Writer: Is It 1937 Yet? 

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On the dangerous comfort of thinking that Putin's Russia isn't as bad as Stalin's.

Report: Coca Production in Colombia Jumped 39 Percent in 2014 

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Cultivation of the leaf used to make cocaine skyrocketed last year in Colombia, according to a new White House report that's likely to pressure authorities in the South American country to preserve a threatened U.S. aerial eradication program at the heart of the drug war. After six straight years of declining or steady production, the amount of land under coca cultivation in Colombia jumped 39 percent in 2014 to 112,000 hectares (about 276,000 acres), according to the Office of...

Inside Out Embryo | ScienceTake | The New York Times

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Seeing how growth unfolds, and folds, in a simple organism.
Produced by: David Frank and James Gorman
Read the story here: http://nyti.ms/1bsjJ4Q
Subscribe to the Times Video newsletter for free and get a handpicked selection of the best videos from The New York Times every week: http://bit.ly/timesvideonewsletter
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Inside Out Embryo | ScienceTake | The New York Times
http://www.youtube.com/user/TheNewYorkTimes
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Vladimir Lenin's true love, Apollinariya Yakubova, found in archive

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After almost a century historians have unearthed a picture of Apollinariya Yakubova, the Russian firebrand with brown eyes considered widely to be the Communist leader Vladimir Lenin's true love.

Florida couple convicted of having sex on beach in front of horrified families - New York Daily News

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New York Daily News

Florida couple convicted of having sex on beach in front of horrified families
New York Daily News
A Florida couple accused of having sex on a beach in front of children was convicted Monday after a jury saw raunchy video evidence of the two getting it on in broad daylight. Elissa Alvarez, 20, and her partner Jose Caballero, 40, face up to 15 years in prison ...
Florida couple who had sex on beach must register as sex offendersFox News
Florida couple convicted of having sex on beachSacramento Bee
Florida man faces 15 years for sex on the beachIrish Independent
Sun Sentinel -Miami Herald
all 167 news articles »

ISIS claims responsibility for Texas shooting but offers no proof - CNN

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CNN

ISIS claims responsibility for Texas shooting but offers no proof
CNN
(CNN) ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack outside a Prophet Mohammed cartoon contest in Texas -- and warned of more attacks to come. In a broadcast on its official radio channel Tuesday, the group said two Al Khilafa soldiers opened fire outside ...
ISIS claims responsibility for Texas attackCBS News
Families of Texas gunmen condemn attackUSA TODAY
Isis claims responsibility for Texas art exhibit attackFinancial Times
Fox News Latino
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Page 7

Kyrgyz Migrant To Sue Moscow Police Over Raid

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In an unusual case, a Kyrgyz migrant laborer is preparing legal action against the Russian police officers who raided her apartment.

Lawmakers in France Move to Vastly Expand Surveillance

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A measure would give the intelligence services the right to gather potentially unlimited electronic data from Internet communications, and to tap cellphones and capture text messages.

Miliband transforms to potential PM

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Labour leader pitches himself as a thoroughly modern candidate who believes in power of politics

Oldest complete copy of Ten Commandments displayed in Israel 

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JERUSALEM (AP) -- The world's oldest complete copy of the Ten Commandments is going on rare display at Israel's leading museum in an exhibit tracing civilization's most pivotal moments....

40 Migrants Feared Dead in Latest Sinking in Mediterranean - New York Times

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New York Times

40 Migrants Feared Dead in Latest Sinking in Mediterranean
New York Times
ROME — A rubber boat crowded with migrants deflated and foundered in the Mediterranean, and as many as 40 people apparently drowned before an approaching merchant ship could get to them, witnesses told the humanitarian group Save the Children on ...

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Injured and Abandoned in Afghanistan | The New York Times

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After years of war, many Afghan soldiers and policemen were grievously injured. But the pensions and health care they receive are often insufficient.
Produced by: Jon Gerberg and Ben Laffin
Read the story here: http://nyti.ms/1K8gsDy
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Injured and Abandoned in Afghanistan | The New York Times
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Page 8

Berlin police find 380 kilos of cocaine hidden with banana shipment 

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German police find 380kg of "high quality" cocaine worth some 15 million euros hidden in a banana shipment, Berlin's largest ever drugs find. . Report by Jennifer Cordingley.

Georgian President Implicitly Criticizes Appointment Of New Defense Minister

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The renewed vote of confidence in the Georgian cabinet necessitated by the resignation of three ministers last month has underscored yet again the tensions and disagreements within the ruling Georgian Dream coalition.

France passes new surveillance law in wake of Charlie Hebdo attack 

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Controversial new bill that allows intelligence agencies to tap phones and emails without judicial permission sparks protests from civil liberties groups
The French parliament has overwhelmingly approved sweeping new surveillance powers in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris in January that killed 17 people at the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and a kosher grocery in Paris.
The new bill, which allows intelligence agencies to tap phones and emails without seeking permission from a judge, sparked protests from rights groups who claimed it would legalise highly intrusive surveillance methods without guarantees for individual freedom and privacy.
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Russian 'Assault' Video Grabs National Headline, Shines Light On Police Response 

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The manager of a well-known Russian poet says she was assaulted by two men as she walked past a rehearsal for the May 9 Victory Day celebrations in central Moscow in an incident that has grabbed national headlines due to the guarded response by police to the alleged attackers.

Lawmakers in France Move to Vastly Expand Surveillance - New York Times

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New York Times

Lawmakers in France Move to Vastly Expand Surveillance
New York Times
PARIS — The lower house of the French Parliament overwhelmingly approved a sweeping intelligence bill that, if it passes in the upper house, would give the government broad surveillance powers with little judicial oversight. The measure, which must still ...
France passes new surveillance law in wake of Charlie Hebdo attackThe Guardian
Lawmakers approve controversial surveillance bill in FranceWashington Post
French lawmakers back easy-spying bill in counterterror moveReuters Canada
The Verge
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Garland Shooting Suspect Simpson Was on FBI Terror Radar - NBCNews.com

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NBCNews.com

Garland Shooting Suspect Simpson Was on FBI Terror Radar
NBCNews.com
One was a "peaceful" Muslim convert who lied to FBI agents during a terror probe while the other was described as a swoon-inducing school "heartthrob" and devoted dad "raised in a normal American fashion." The roommates from Phoenix — Elton Simpson ...
The British jihadi fighting for ISIS in Syria who 'groomed' Texas Muhammed ...Daily Mail
Texas Shooting Suspect Elton Simpson's Private Messages: 'The Noose Is ...ABC News
Garland Officer "Saved Lives" at Prophet Muhammad Art Contest, Police SayNBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

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Iran bans 'homosexual' and 'devil worshipping' hairstyles

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As the desire to make fashion statements spikes each summer, authorities step up their crackdown on ‘un-Islamic’ haircuts and body modifications
“Homosexual” and “devil worshipping” hairstyles have been banned in Iran, alongside tattoos, sunbed treatments and plucked eyebrows for men, which are all deemed un-Islamic.
The move – aimed at spiky cuts – follows a trend where, each summer, Iranian authorities Iranian authorities get tough on men and women sporting clothing or hairdos seen as imitations of western lifestyles.
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Saudi Arabia presses on with big projects

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Finance minister warns Riyadh of need to ‘rationalise’ spending

French lawmakers back easy-spying bill in counterterror move

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PARIS (Reuters) - French lawmakers approved a bill on Tuesday to let intelligence services deploy fly-on-the-wall spying devices more easily against suspected terrorists after Islamist militant attacks killed 17 people in January.






  

New York jury unable to reach verdict in Etan Patz murder case - Fox News

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Fox News

New York jury unable to reach verdict in Etan Patz murder case
Fox News
DEVELOPING: The New York jury in the Etan Patz murder trial said Tuesday that it is unable to reach a verdict on the 15th day of deliberations, Reuters reported. "I'd like you to keep deliberating," Justice Maxwell Miley said. "I am not asking any of you to ...
Jury in Etan Patz case deadlocked again, but told to keep tryingLos Angeles Times
Jury in Etan Patz
 
Trial Again Says It Cannot Reach a VerdictNew York Times

Judge Tells Deadlocked Jury in Etan Patz Case to Keep GoingABC News
Yahoo News
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news articles »

France's National Front Founder, Jean-Marie Le Pen, Disowns Daughter - NBCNews.com

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NBCNews.com

France's National Front Founder, Jean-Marie Le Pen, Disowns Daughter
NBCNews.com
PARIS — National Front founder Jean-Marie Le Pen disowned his daughter and the party leader, Marine, on Tuesday after she suspended him from the far-right French movement, saying he hoped she would lose the 2017 presidential election. The party's ...
Family feud rocks top of France's far-right National FrontWashington Post
National Front patriarch Le Pen urges daughter to change nameDeutsche Welle

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Saudi King Warns Of Iran Threat

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Saudi Arabia's King Salman told Gulf monarchs they must stand up to Iran, as he hosted a regional meeting also attended by French President Francois Hollande.
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Page 10

Russia's 'Victory Day' Glory Over Nazis Overshadowed by Ukraine 

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Russia is preparing to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, known since the Soviet era as “The Great Patriotic War,” with a massive parade on May 9th of military hardware and millions of medals handed out to veterans or their relatives.  But critics say the Soviet-style display of power and nationalism overshadows tragic scars during and after the war that still influence politics and foreign policy, especially in the current Ukraine crisis. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
Originally published at - http://www.voanews.com/media/video/2750031.html

English nationalism is out of the bottle, whoever wins

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The Tories have fanned jingoism for short-term political aims, yet it is most lethal to Englishness itself
Spare a moment for the union, buried by its own defenders. The Conservatives have opted to fan English nationalism and resentment, both to peel off voters in key English marginals and todelegitimise any future Labour government backed by the SNP. Such nationalist resentment cannot be stoked and then neatly placed back into a box when it has outlived its use, discarded until deemed useful when another political crisis arises. English nationalism is set to become a mighty force over the next five years, whoever governs, and it may well help to consume an already disintegrating union.
As a plastic northerner, I feel London is a world removed from the Stockport of my childhood
A new populism should unite English, Welsh and Scots alike against a self-interested rapacious elite
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Moldova seeks to solve riddle of missing $1 billion

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CHISINAU (Reuters) - Moldova will step up an investigation into the disappearance of more than $1 billion from three banks, the head of the central bank told Reuters on Tuesday, after around 10,000 people protested over the scandal at the weekend.






  

Morning Plum: Hillary pokes GOP’s hornet’s nest on immigration

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As your humble blogger has argued before, one of the under-appreciated stories of 2016 is that likely Dem nominee Hillary Clinton has already embraced much of President Obama’s agenda. With the GOP candidates all pledging, to varying degrees, to roll back whatever parts of that agenda are realized, and opposing elements of it that still hang in the balance, many basic contrasts for 2016 are in place.
Today Clinton will deepen that contrast on an issue that has potentially far-reaching demographic implications for the 2016 battle: Immigration. In remarks today at an event with DREAMers and immigration activists, Clinton will say:
Undocumented immigrants must have a chance for full citizenship under overhaul of the immigration system, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton will demand Tuesday.
“The standard for a true solution is nothing less than a full and equal path to citizenship,” Clinton’s campaign said in a preview of remarks she is expected to give during a visit to a largely Hispanic high school here.
“She will say that we cannot settle for proposals that provide hard-working people with merely a second-class status,” the campaign said.
A number of observers are pointing out that this aligns Clinton with the “left” side of the Democratic Party. This is not really right. In fact, the Democratic Party is more unified in favor of immigration reform than it has ever been, due in part to the increasing importance of Latinos to the party, and in keeping with the party’s broader shift on the priorities that matter to the emerging coalition that has driven Dem victories in recent national elections — nonwhites, millennials, and socially liberal college educated whites.
Clinton’s speech today suggests she sees holding that coalition as crucial, as does her recent rhetoric on police reformon gay rights, and on climate change, perhaps at the expense of the culturally conservative blue collar whites who used to matter more to Dem electoral chances.
Clinton’s speech will be short on specifics. But it seems likely Clinton will ultimately embrace a framework similar to the one in the Senate bill, which trades massive investments in border security for a path to citizenship, the trade-off (security for legalization) most likely to produce actual bipartisan reform.
On this score, keep an eye on how the GOP candidates — particularly Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio — react to Clinton’s speech. Bush has genuinely challenged his own party by preposterously claimingthe moral plight of undocumented immigrants is complex and that they may have something positive to contribute to American society. And he’s supported legalization. But at the same time, he’sgravitated towards what might be called a “safe zone” for GOP candidates on immigration: Insisting the border must be secured first (without explaining by what metric) before any kind of legalization can happen.
Meanwhile, Rubio — the GOP’s Great Latino Hope — helped champion the Senate bill, but he’ssince retreated to that same safe zone. And Scott Walker has retreated even further, to a place where he’s flirting with limits on legal immigration.
The likes of Bush and Rubio will likely respond to Clinton’s speech by reiterating vague support for legalization but on the condition the border is secured first. In the long run, it seems obvious both Bush and Rubio have a very credible shot at doing better than Mitt Romney did among Latinos. But for now, Clinton’s citizenship gauntlet could help deepen the contrast between the parties in ways that favor Democrats. And here’s something else that could really help on that score: Clinton will probably express support for Obama’s executive actions shielding millions from deportations — which the eventual GOP presidential nominee will almost certainly have pledged to roll back.
******************************************************************
* OBAMA APPROVAL EDGES UP: A new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll finds that Obama’s approval rating has edged a bit into positive territory for the first time in nearly two years: It’s now at 48-47. The polling averages still show Obama in negative territory, though even there his approval rose throughout late 2014 (and appears to be leveling off now).
The NBC poll also finds Obama’s approval on the economy at 48-47 — consistent with various indicators of rising economic optimism.
* HILLARY’S IMAGE TAKES A HIT: The new NBC/WSJ poll also finds that Clinton’s unfavorable rating is up six points since March: She’s moved from 44-36 then to 42-42 now. But she’s still leading all her would-be GOP challengers:
Clinton leads Bush, the former Florida governor, by six points (49 percent to 43 percent); Rubio, the Florida senator, by another six points (49 percent to 43 percent); and Walker, the Wisconsin governor by 10 (50 percent to 40 percent).
As always, early polls mean very little, but we’ll be posting them here (because you should at least know they exist), counting on readers to exercise appropriate caution.
* BROAD SUPPORT FOR IRAN DEAL: The NBC/WSJ poll also asks about ongoing discussions over a possible deal curbing Iran’s nuclear program:
Some people say that it is important to have an agreement in place to allow international inspectors into Iran to make sure it is not producing nuclear weapons since the alternative would be to end those discussions. Other people say that, given Iran’s actions in the past, the emerging agreement is too risky. They say we are better off holding the line on economic sanctions against Iran as a way to deter its nuclear program.
Important to have an agreement: 54
Too risky: 37
This is consistent with previous polling that has suggested Americans are skeptical such an agreement will work, but want to give it a try, anyway.
* DO-OR-DIE FOR IRAN BILL IN SENATE: The Hill reports that the Corker-Cardin bill to provide a Congressional vote on an eventual Iran deal is facing a “do or die” moment: It is at real risk of perishing, as Mitch McConnell decides whether to allow votes on amendments from Marco Rubio and Tom Cotton that would “toughen up” the terms of any deal. If such an amendment passes it will probably kill the bill.
The bottom line is that, if McConnell wants Congress to vote on the deal under the framework that both parties have agreed upon, he’ll probably have to move the bill forward, angering conservatives.
* HARRY REID TALKS TOUGH ON TRADE, NSA SURVEILLANCE: The Dem Senate leader tells The Huffington Post that he will not agree to allow a vote on “fast track” authority for Obama to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal until the Senate votes on an infrastructure bill and on a bill to reign in NSA bulk surveillance.
As I’ve noted, the bill to curb surveillance — the U.S.A. Freedom Act — stands a chance of becoming law. But it will require Mitch McConnell — who wants to extend bulk surveillance until 2020 — to accept defeat. So it’s good to see Reid insisting that the Freedom Act get a vote.
* REPUBLICANS DEMAGOGUE TRADE DEAL — FROM THE RIGHT: Politico reports on a new one making the rounds, courtesy of the good Senator Jeff Sessions: The Trans-Pacific Partnership could unleash a flood of immigration, the suggestion being that this could take jobs from Americans.
Pro-TPP Republicans are furiously trying to stamp out the claim. This is interesting, because it gets at the question of whether conservatives in the House will defect from backing “fast track” authority for the trade deal, which — with enough Dem defections on the left — could sink it in the Lower Chamber.
* OBAMA ‘FINDS HIS VOICE ON RACE': Peter Baker has an interesting piece arguing that the president is beginning to assert himself a bit more boldly on race in the wake of the Baltimore riots and other events drawing national attention. Note these remarks from Obama:
“I grew up without a dad. I grew up lost sometimes and adrift, not having a sense of a clear path. The only difference between me and a lot of other young men in this neighborhood and all across the country is that I grew up in an environment that was a little more forgiving.”
So, yes, apparently Obama is willing to discuss the absence of fathers — including his own.
Greg Sargent writes The Plum Line blog, a reported opinion blog with a liberal slant -- what you might call “opinionated reporting” from the left.
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