Archiv: lame excuses / opportunities


20.02.2020 - 17:05 [ JustSecurity.org ]

Germany Goes 19th Century with New Statement on Law of Occupation – On Status of US Forces in Syria

In Germany’s current view, the United States cannot be considered an occupying power in these areas, because although it exercises physical control over them, it does not “exercise jurisdiction” there. On this approach, for an occupation to materialize, two cumulative elements must be fulfilled: effective physical control and the actual establishment of an administration in the area.

Granted, this interpretation can be read into the text of Article 42 of the 1907 Hague Regulations,

15.02.2020 - 12:08 [ NATO ]

NATO Secretary General participates in meeting of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS

Mr. Stoltenberg briefed the Coalition on the decision in principle by Allied ministers to enhance NATO’s training mission in Iraq. As a first step, this will consist of NATO taking on some of the Global Coalition’s current training activities in the country.

Mr. Stoltenberg highlighted that NATO’s work in Iraq is helping strengthen the Iraqi armed forces and institutions to ensure ISIS cannot return, and Iraq no longer requires support.

15.02.2020 - 12:06 [ @NATOpress / Twitter ]

Secretary General @jensstoltenberg took part in the meeting of Defence Ministers of the Global @Coalition to Defeat ISIS in #Munich.

He briefed on the Allied decision to enhance #NATO’s training mission in #Iraq. #MSC2020.

Read more: http://bit.ly/2UUFLb5

13.02.2020 - 12:06 [ wboc.com ]

NATO eyes boosting Iraq army training, still needs Iraq’s OK

NATO is ready to expand its military training effort in Iraq, the alliance’s top civilian official said Wednesday, but the Iraqi government is not yet ready to approve the move.

The Canada-led operation was launched in 2018 but suspended last month after a U.S. missile strike at Baghdad Airport killed Iran’s top general and Iraq’s government and lawmakers demanded that foreign troops leave. U.S. President Donald Trump, meanwhile, has demanded that U.S. allies do more in the Mideast.

12.02.2020 - 13:50 [ New York Times ]

Faulty Iowa App Was Part of Push to Restore Democrats’ Digital Edge

(04.02.2020)

Still, when Iowa Democrats, on the advice of the national party, abandoned plans to have caucus results called in by phone because of security concerns and instead build an app, they chose Shadow from multiple bidders, according to a state party official.

08.02.2020 - 11:21 [ Fox News / Youtube ]

Iowa Democratic Party chair holds a press conference

Iowa Democratic Party Chair Troy Price holds a press conference on the Iowa Caucus process.

08.02.2020 - 11:19 [ WQAD.com ]

Watch: Iowa Democratic party chair holds press conference on caucus status

Friday, February 7, at 3:30 p.m., Iowa Democratic Party Chair Troy Price started speaking at the Northwestern Hotel to discuss updates in the 2020 Iowa Caucus process.

04.02.2020 - 06:18 [ CNN ]

READ: Iowa Democratic Party statement on delay in caucus results

„We found inconsistencies in the reporting of three sets of results. In addition to the tech systems being used to tabulate results, we are also using photos of results and a paper trail to validate that all results match and ensure that we have confidence and accuracy in the numbers we report. This is simply a reporting issue, the app did not go down and this is not a hack or an intrusion. The underlying data and paper trail is sound and will simply take time to further report the results.“ — Iowa Democratic Party Communications Director Mandy McClure

26.01.2020 - 05:42 [ Bloomberg ]

German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, speaking in an interview at the World Economic Forum on Thursday, said that Germany aims to keep its forces in Iraq, but can only do so at the behest of the government in Baghdad.

“We need to keep in mind that in Iraq, IS is not yet defeated,“ Kramp-Karrenbauer told Bloomberg Television in Davos, Switzerland. “If the pressure is reduced, then the danger is great that it resumes its regime of terror.”

15.01.2020 - 10:14 [ theHill.com ]

Democrats clash at debate over keeping US troops in Mideast

The United States has about 5,000 troops in Iraq leading the fight against ISIS. There are also about 800 U.S. troops fighting ISIS in Syria. Meanwhile, about 14,000 U.S. troops are in Afghanistan helping Afghan forces fight the Taliban and conducting counterterrorism operations against groups such as ISIS.

Outside of combat zones, the United States has also deployed about 14,000 more troops throughout the Middle East since the summer in an effort to deter Iran.

13.01.2020 - 20:33 [ theHill.com ]

Fox’s Wallace presses O’Brien on contradiction between Trump threat claims, briefing

“It does seem to be a contradiction. He’s telling Laura Ingraham [about imminent attacks], but in a 75-minute classified briefing, your top national security people never mentioned this to members of Congress. Why not?” Wallace asked O’Brien on “Fox News Sunday.”

“I wasn’t at the briefing, and I don’t know how the Q&A went back and forth. Sometimes it depends on the questions that were asked or how they were phrased,” O’Brien said.

13.01.2020 - 20:18 [ New York Times ]

The Trump Administration’s Fluctuating Explanations for the Suleimani Strike

Since the Jan. 3 drone strike that killed Qassim Suleimani, Iran’s most important general, the Trump administration has offered shifting rationales for the attack. Here are some of the administration’s evolving justifications. …

13.01.2020 - 19:44 [ theHill.com ]

Esper: Gang of 8 ‚did not think‘ further intelligence on Iranian threat should be shared with Congress

Esper said that he was not in the room briefing the top intelligence lawmakers, but said he spoke to one of the briefers afterward.

“His assessment was …

13.01.2020 - 19:28 [ Washington Post ]

Trump’s ‘four embassies’ claim utterly falls apart

Trump has said in recent days that Soleimani was planning to “blow up” the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad and also that he was going after “four embassies.”

But Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper revealed on talk shows Sunday that the idea that Soleimani was about to attack four embassies wasn’t based on intelligence. Instead, he said it was simply something Trump and others “believed” to be the case.

13.01.2020 - 19:25 [ theHill.com ]

Trump says it doesn’t matter if Soleimani posed an imminent threat

President Trump on Monday said it didn’t matter if Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani posed an imminent threat to the United States because of his “horrible past.”

Trump also asserted that his national security team agreed on the imminent threat posed by Soleimani that led to the decision to kill him.

13.01.2020 - 06:15 [ CBS News ]

Esper says he „didn’t see“ specific evidence showing Iranian threat to 4 U.S. embassies

„The president didn’t cite a specific piece of evidence. What he said was he believed,“ Esper said Sunday on „Face the Nation.“ „I didn’t see one, with regard to four embassies. What I’m saying is that I shared the president’s view that probably — my expectation was they were going to go after our embassies.

13.01.2020 - 06:12 [ theGrayzone.com ]

Ex-US intel officer: Pompeo ‘lying through his teeth’ on Iran

The Trump administration is imposing new sanctions on Iran and defying Iraq’s call for a US troop withdrawal. This comes as the stated rationale for the US assassination of Qasem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis is being increasingly undermined.

Scott Ritter, a former Marine Corps intelligence officer, analyzes the increased White House coercion efforts and collapsing intelligence claims.

13.01.2020 - 06:09 [ theHill.com ]

Administration officials defend Trump claims, Soleimani intelligence as senators push back on briefing

Esper also said the so-called Gang of Eight, the top members of Congress’s intelligence committees, did not believe further intelligence on Iran should be shared with Congress.

Esper told CBS’s Margaret Brennan he spoke to one of the officials who briefed the Gang of Eight and that “his assessment was most if not all the members thought the intelligence was persuasive and that the Gang of Eight did not think it should be released to the broader members of Congress.”

11.01.2020 - 12:51 [ Chris Murphy, US Senator / Twitter ]

Let’s be clear – if there was evidence of imminent attacks on four embassies, the Administration would have said so at our Wednesday briefing. They didn’t. So either Fox News gets higher level briefings than Congress… or…wait for it… there was no such imminent threat.

09.01.2020 - 16:21 [ NBC News ]

Pence says sharing intel with Congress could ‚compromise‘ sources

On NBC’s „TODAY,“ Pence told Savannah Guthrie that the administration could not provide Congress with some of the „most compelling“ intelligence behind the administration’s decision to kill Soleimani because doing so „could compromise sources and methods.“

07.01.2020 - 19:27 [ CNN ]

Pompeo again declines to present evidence of ‚imminent‘ threat that led to strike against Iranian general

Sen. Bob Menendez of New Jersey, along with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, is pushing for the declassification of Trump’s formal notification to Congress over Soleimani’s killing, which has sparked a dangerous escalation between the two longtime foes.

Several sources have told CNN that the notification was brief, contained few operational details and essentially laid out the President’s authorities to carry out the strike.

07.01.2020 - 15:49 [ Independent.co.uk ]

Iran crisis: Germany to withdraw troops in Iraq over security fears after general Soleimani killed by Trump-ordered airstrike

Germany is moving some of its military personnel from Iraq to neighbouring countries over security concerns, the government told lawmakers, days after the killing of a top Iranian military commander in a US drone strike.

About 30 of the 120 German soldiers in Iraq who mainly train Iraqi security forces will be redeployed to Jordan and Kuwait, the government told parliament in a letter on Monday.

07.01.2020 - 15:42 [ Sky News ]

Letter saying US troops will pull out of Baghdad was ‚an honest mistake‘

Our own sources in Baghdad confirmed that the letter was genuine and that they too had seen it.

One source said their understanding of the US position was that a partial withdrawal or repositioning of some troops to Kuwait was taking place.

30.12.2019 - 19:42 [ RadioFarda.com ]

Russia’s Foreign Minister Says Either Abide By Iran Nuclear Deal Or Kill It

Lavrov made the comments on December 30 after meeting in Moscow with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who said that the European signatories to the deal were „not taking any practical steps“ to support it.

30.12.2019 - 19:04 [ Elijah J. Magnier / Twitter ]

To be very clear: #US military officials and US embassy informed Prime Minister @AdilAbdAlMahdi half an hour before the attack about the US intention to violate #Iraq sovereignty and bomb Iraqi security forces positions.

PM Abdel Mahdi strongly refused the attack. US didn’t care.

30.12.2019 - 18:35 [ StraitsTimes.com ]

Iran seizes ship, arrests 16 Malaysians: State TV

„The ship’s 16 crew who are of Malaysian nationality were arrested,“ the Guards‘ naval commander for the region, Brigadier-General Ali Ozmayi, was quoted as saying.

Abu Musa is one of three islands in the southern Gulf that are under Iranian control but claimed by the United Arab Emirates.

30.12.2019 - 00:05 [ BBC ]

US strikes militia bases in Iraq and Syria

Sunday’s strikes in Iraq were close to the Al-Qaim district, close to the border with Syria, according to Reuters news agency.

Iraqi security and militia sources told Reuters news agency at least 18 militia fighters were killed and more than 50 wounded following three strikes in the country.

30.12.2019 - 00:01 [ CBS News ]

Pentagon says it carried out strikes in Iraq and Syria against militia responsible for defense contractor’s death

The Pentagon carried out airstrikes against a militia responsible for a rocket attack on an Iraqi military base near Kirkuk that left an American defense contractor dead. In a statement, the Pentagon said it had carried out strikes on the Iranian-backed Kata’ib Hizbollah group.

27.12.2019 - 15:51 [ Haaretz ]

Putin Says Poland, Western Leaders Cooperated With Hitler

Putin cast the Molotov-Ribbentrop treaty as a move the Soviet Union was forced into following nonaggression agreements some other European nations had signed with Hitler.

He cited a 1938 agreement reached by Germany, Britain, France and Italy that allowed Hitler to annex Czechoslovakia as an example of Western leaders’ alleged “collusion” with Hitler.

26.12.2019 - 19:19 [ Spiked ]

In 2020, we need to fight the new thoughtpolice

In the United States, there is a growing industry of consultants who advise organisations about how to rid themselves of their supposed ‘white-supremacy culture’. According to these zealots, some of the attitudes and behaviours associated with white-supremacy culture include ‘individualism’, ‘a sense of urgency’ and ‘perfectionism’.

In other words, those who take their work too seriously may be tainted by white supremacy. Thinking logically is basically thinking white.

10.12.2019 - 20:04 [ Politicshome.com ]

Dad of London Bridge victim says Boris Johnson ‘didn’t see tragedy, he saw opportunity’

The father of one of the London Bridge terror attack victims has accused Boris Johnson of using his son’s death as „an opportunity to score some points in the election“.

04.12.2019 - 16:21 [ MIT Technology Review ]

China’s CRISPR babies: Read exclusive excerpts from the unseen original research

He Jiankui’s manuscript shows how he ignored ethical and scientific norms in creating the gene-edited twins Lulu and Nana.

04.12.2019 - 16:16 [ South China Morning Post ]

Gene-edited babies: Chinese scientist He Jiankui ‘may have created unintended mutations’

Despite biophysicist’s claims, team failed to reproduce changes to make twin girls HIV immune, excerpts from manuscript show
Birth of gene-edited babies Lula and Nana sent shock waves through scientific world in 2018

25.11.2019 - 06:11 [ i24news.tv ]

Netanyahu ‚confirms‘ Iran is planning new attacks in Middle East

Incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that he can „confirm“ Iran is planning new attacks in the region, vowing Israel will do everything to push back against its expanding militant influence.

Netanyahu made the comments during his visit with Defense Minister Naftali Bennett to the northern border with Syria.

14.11.2019 - 18:55 [ Harvard International Law Journal, Forthcoming / papers.ssrn.com ]

Cut These Words: Passion and International Law of War Scholarship

(12.11.2019)

First, and perhaps the most fascinating mystery, is the near-total erasure of the Vietnam era,
and its vociferous doctrinal and policy debates, from the War on Terror international legal debate. The more one reads, the stranger it becomes—particularly once the invasion of Cambodia becomes publicly known in 1970, and the U.S. Department of State justifies the intervention in international legal terms. The doctrinal debate is eerily similar to those underlying key controversies between 2009 and 2018. The underlying law is, in many respects, largely the same. The contours of the international legal questions and their purported implications for the future disclose remarkable similarities. And yet, with the exception of that single footnote in the Al Aulaqi memorandum, there is almost no reference to the raging scholarly discourse that occurred barely two generations earlier. This would perhaps be understandable if I had gone deep into the national archives of, say, Bangladesh, and had found obscure texts that had never been published in English, or had never been made available in libraries or on the internet. But we are talking more or less about similar substantive debates occurring in similar journals by scholars contending with the same government offices. And it all just disappeared. Why?7

12.11.2019 - 18:23 [ i24news.tv ]

Israel targets senior Islamic Jihad figure in Damascus, kills son: report

Since civil war erupted in Syria in 2011, Israel has carried out hundreds of strikes in the neighboring country.

12.11.2019 - 18:19 [ Washington Post ]

Israel kills a senior leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza airstrike

In Gaza, the Israel Defense Forces targeted Baha Abu al-Ata, the militant commander Israel considered responsible for several previous rocket launches, on grounds that his next attack was imminent. In a televised appearance, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Abu al-Ata the “chief terrorist in Gaza” and emphasized the care taken to prevent other injuries in the strike.

07.10.2019 - 14:13 [ Hurriyet ]

Is Turkey’s third Syria incursion looming?

Furthermore, Turkish authorities do often question the motives of the continued military support of the U.S. to the YPG although the war against ISIL has already been won. Many in Ankara recall the establishment of the Kurdish autonomous region in northern Iraq in the 1990s and express concerns that this trend in Syria may lead to the disintegration of its southern neighbor.

06.10.2019 - 12:01 [ RT.com ]

Turkish troops & armored vehicles amass at Syrian border after Erdogan announces IMMINENT incursion (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)

Military convoys were captured in dozens of photos and videos, confirming the Turkish leader’s claim that preparations have been finalized to establish a so-called ‘safe zone’ on Syrian soil along the Turkish border and that the operation could be launched “as soon as today or tomorrow.”

Additional armored vehicles and troops were sent to the border town of Akcakale, across from Tal Abyad in Syria, state television TRT confirms.

06.10.2019 - 11:02 [ Hurriyet ]

Turkey ready for operation east of Euphrates in Syria

Addressing the ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) 29th Consultation and Assessment meeting in Kızılcahaman, a retreat town of capital Ankara, Erdoğan said Turkey aims to establish peace east of the Euphrates River by purging the Syrian region from terrorists.

04.10.2019 - 09:51 [ Shannon Vavra, Reporter @CyberScoopNews covering NSA, Cyber Command, cyberwarfare / Twitter ]

The US, UK, and Australia (3 Five Eyes) are asking @facebook to delay message encryption. They’re using child sex exploitation as a way to highlight concerns encrypted comms can hamper law enforcement.

Details on latest encryption battle w @CyberScoopNews

04.10.2019 - 09:18 [ BuzzFeed ]

Attorney General Bill Barr Will Ask Zuckerberg To Halt Plans For End-To-End Encryption Across Facebook’s Apps

Attorney General Bill Barr, along with officials from the United Kingdom and Australia, is set to publish an open letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg asking the company to delay plans for end-to-end encryption across its messaging services until it can guarantee the added privacy does not reduce public safety.

A draft of the letter, dated Oct. 4, is set to be released alongside the announcement of a new data-sharing agreement between law enforcement in the US and the UK; it was obtained by BuzzFeed News ahead of its publication.

04.10.2019 - 08:52 [ theGuardian.com ]

Calls for backdoor access to WhatsApp as Five Eyes nations meet

(30.09.2019)

British, American and other intelligence agencies from English-speaking countries have concluded a two-day meeting in London amid calls for spies and police officers to be given special, backdoor access to WhatsApp and other encrypted communications.

The meeting of the “Five Eyes” nations – the UK, US, Australia, Canada and New Zealand – was hosted by new home secretary, Priti Patel, in an effort to coordinate efforts to combat terrorism and child abuse.

26.09.2019 - 16:15 [ BBC ]

Saudi Arabia says military response to Iran is possible

While Saudi Arabia wanted to avoid war and escalation, Iran would be held accountable for the drone and missile strikes, Adel al-Jubeir told the BBC.

A US assessment claiming Iran was behind the attacks was backed up by the UK, France and Germany this week.

26.09.2019 - 16:12 [ Politico.eu ]

Macron, Merkel and Johnson blame Iran for Saudi oil attack

(25.09.2019)

NEW YORK — The leaders of France, Germany and the United Kingdom on Monday blamed Iran for an attack on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia earlier this month.

“We condemn in the strongest terms the attacks on oil facilities on Saudi territory on September 14th, 2019 in Abqaiq and Khurais, and we reaffirm in this context our full solidarity with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its population,” French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said in a joint statement after meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

24.09.2019 - 14:53 [ telesur ]

Germany, UK, France Blame Iran for Saudi Attack, Urge New Nuclear Deal

(23.09.2019)

“The time has come for Iran to accept negotiation on a long-term framework for its nuclear program as well as on issues related to regional security, including its missiles program and other means of delivery,” the three countries added

24.09.2019 - 14:41 [ Haaretz ]

Israel Election Results: Gantz Capitulates Without Battle

Less than a week after his impressive electoral achievement, the head of the largest Knesset faction, Kahol Lavan leader Benny Gantz, conceded his right to be the first to try and form a coalition government. The explanation given by “party sources” for this concession is that Gantz prefers to wait for Netanyahu to try first and fail.

Regrettably, this lame excuse is unconvincing. This move looks like a capitulation without a fight, an admission that the right wing’s long-standing tactic of delegitimizing parties representing Arab society succeeded.

24.09.2019 - 06:15 [ Vox.com ]

France, Germany, and UK say Iran is responsible for attacks on Saudi Arabia

“It is clear for us that Iran bears responsibility for this attack,” the leaders of the three European powers said. “There is no other explanation.”

25.07.2019 - 17:27 [ Tasnim News ]

Iran Sends Letter to UN Security Council over Seizure of UK Tanker

It was entering the strait from the southern route, which is an exit path, increasing the risk of an accident.

Moreover, Stena Impero had not heeded any of the warnings from the Iranian Ports and Maritime Organization.

The UK oil tanker was also polluting the Persian Gulf water heavily by dumping crude oil residue.

08.06.2019 - 08:05 [ Haaretz ]

Neither Israel’s nor Germany’s Slide Into Fascism Was Accidental

It would be a mistake to see this degeneration as a necessary, let alone inevitable, evil. It is the realization of merely one potential, however central, of identity in a national context. It is neither ordained by heaven nor a divine law. It is a choice, and one that ought to be changed.