I have been holding this report, patiently waiting to see additional reports that could connect dots to a possibility of state sponsored covert activities.
Surprisingly, I did not have long to wait:
Germanwings Flight 9525 (4U9525/GWI18G) was a scheduled international passenger flight, flying from Barcelona–El Prat Airport, Spain, to Düsseldorf Airport, …
This aircrash is as huge an event as Malaysia airlines’…
The Germany, Spain, and France government heads all are parading in mourning photo-ops relating to this “highly unusual event”; indeed as “highly unusual” as Malaysia’s air crashes.
My initial research attempts was to discover the passenger list for officials, agents, or other VIPs.
Thanks to Dahboo, who found a curiously suspicious passenger death connected with the unfortunate Germanwings airliner, Booz Allen Hamilton technology consulting firm, and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA)…
Yvonne Selke’s death & NGA secrecy
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There was a sense of misplaced joy on some parts of the Israeli Left as Netanyahu’s carefully crafted messaging began to unravel in the days leading up to elections. Finally, the world would see his true colors. But the same thing that keeps Netanyahu in power is the same thing that perpetuates the occupation: lack of an alternative vision.
By Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man |Published March 18, 2015
Benjamin Netanyahu gives a victory speech on election night, March 18, 2015. (Photo: +972 Magazine)
It would have been pretty tempting to write a headline along the lines of, “Netanyahu rules out two-state solution, Israel votes for him anyway.” But that would have been silly. First off, Benjamin Netanyahu didn’t support the two-state solution when he was elected six years ago — and that was following the most intense and hopeful peace talks in a decade. Secondly, the voters whom he attracted with his last-minute confession were most likely going to vote for the Jewish Home, which has been far more adamant and open about opposing Palestinian statehood.
There was a nearly tangible sense of misplaced joy on some parts of the Israeli Left as Netanyahu’s carefully crafted messaging began to unravel in the days leading up to the elections. Finally, the world would see his true colors. Finally, all those Israelis who support peace and want their society to be more egalitarian will wake up and vote Bibi out of office.
The problem with that sentiment is, the reason Bibi waited until the last minute to publicize the less palatable points of his platform is that they were not ever issues in the election. His opponents did not campaign on a platform of equality or support for the two-state solution — it was simply not on the agenda.
It would be amiss at this point to condemn the 38 percent of Israelis who voted for right-wing nationalist parties (Likud, Israel Beitenu, Jewish Home and Yahad) on Tuesday. And sure, many of them, particularly supporters of Jewish Home and Yahad, are settlers and ultra-nationalist ideologues whose views are simply incompatible with contemporary values. But the main point is that Netanyahu offers mainstream Israelis stability in a scary world.
Sure, Netanyahu fear-mongers and plays up threats for electoral and political gain. But Israelis aren’t stupid. There are real threats out there. ISIS, while not synonymous with Hamas, really is only an hour’s drive away. Enough Palestinians do want to harm Israelis that “peace” feels unsafe in the current climate. A nuclear-armed Iran, whether it threatens Israel or is the catalyst for a regional arms race, is indeed a terrifying prospect. And while there are various approaches for discussing those threats, Netanyahu has found that the most politically expedient way of presenting them is apocalyptically.
The problem with those hoping to replace Netanyahu and his world of international conspiracies, tidal waves of anti-Semitism and existential threats is that they are not providing an alternative vision. You can be a great salesman but, ultimately, if you have a crappy product you’re not going to corner the market. Even if the Left were to bring in the most trusted military general or esteemed statesman as its next candidate to challenge Netanyahu and the Right, it would still lack a vision for them to sell to voters.
Public opinion and political alliances can be moved, but you need to be selling something more attractive than “I’m not him.” Doing so is a long process, one that can take at least multiple election cycles. It requires selling a dream, and unfortunately, it is probably also predicated on life getting much worse around here.
Labor party leader Isaac Herzog at campaign headquarters on election night, March 17, 2015. His slate, the Zionist Camp, fell far short of expectations that he might unseat PM Netanyahu. (Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)
With all of its faults and threats and limitations, the status quo is comfortable for most Israelis. The State, with Netanyahu at the helm, has proven that it can hold things together — that with a little bit of sacrifice in the form of limited armed conflict every few years, that Israel’s current situation is resilient. And while the social and economic reality for most Israelis leaves much to be desired and has little to offer in terms of mobility, the majority is getting by.
In such a situation, in which life is manageable and the alternative — which doesn’t really exist — is scary, why would Israelis vote for something different? Even Isaac Herzog understood that, as evidenced by his campaign’s lack of emphasis on any vision for substantive change or alternatives.
In the wake of Netanyahu’s victory on Tuesday some on the Left have argued that it is time to look outward for change, that it is clear the impetus won’t come from inside Israeli society. They are right and they are wrong.
It has long been true that in the current situation, relying on Israelis to grant the Palestinians all of the rights they deserve — either out of the goodness of their hearts, guided by some moral compass or by resorting to racist ideas like the “demographic threat” — is futile. A push from the international community, whether it comes in the form of carrots or sticks — likely the latter — will be necessary.
But what that approach misses, and what a large majority of the Israeli Left cannot seem to grasp, is that ultimately, Israelis and Palestinians are going to have to live here together. Whether in one liberal-democratic state, two ethnic nation-states, a confederation or some other arrangement, the two societies are intertwined, both in economic terms but also in their ability to survive and thrive in such a small plot of land.
Don’t get me wrong; the occupation must end tomorrow. It is an affront to the dignity and rights of the Palestinians to suggest it can wait. But in order to reach a point where the outcome of a shared future is imaginable, let alone attainable, both peoples — but especially Israelis — need a vision. In these past elections there was not even one up for sale.
A few weeks ago I visited South Africa and on the boat back from Robben Island I found myself perplexed. How could it have been that so many people thought the subjugation, racism and systematic cruelty of Apartheid was acceptable? How was it that more whites didn’t stand up to it? At the same time, I had this uncomfortable thought in the back of my head that I do understand why more Israelis don’t stand up to the many, similar injustices of the occupation: life is stable, the alternative is scary and nobody is offering them a way out.
Watch the video above: A bright fireball was captured by the Mirasteilas Observatory in Falera, Switzerland.
TORONTO — Residents across a large swath of central Europe were treated to a bright fireball in the night sky on Saturday.
Almost 200 reports of the meteor were sent to the American Meteor Society, streaming in from Switzerland, France, Germany and Austria. Seven people reported hearing a boom as it broke up across the sky.
“The fireball was as bright that it illuminated the sky and landscape around me to twilight brightness levels,” read one person’s report.
WATCH: Dashboard camera footage of meteor in Austria
The meteor wasn’t quite as large as the one from Feb. 15, 2013, when thousands were injured in Chelyabinsk, Russia, after a massive fireball lit up the morning sky blowing out…
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SAINT-JEROME, Que. — A Quebec ski coach is facing more sex charges as three new alleged victims gave come forward.
Bertrand Charest now faces a total of 56 charges involving 11 young females.
Nine additional charges were laid Monday as Charest appeared in court for a bail hearing northwest of Montreal.
A publication ban has been placed on the evidence presented at the hearing, which will resume Tuesday.
Charest was arraigned last week on charges including sexual assault and breach of trust involving females between the ages of 12 and 19.
Authorities say the alleged crimes occurred between 1991 and 1998.
Mont-Tremblant police have said the alleged assaults took place north of Montreal and in France, Austria, New Zealand and the United States.
TORONTO – An Oklahoma man out for a boat ride on the weekend made a rather gruesome discovery: several biohazard containers filled with used syringes and vials of blood, floating along the Arkansas River.
Now Taylor Smyth is telling local media outlets he won’t allow his family to swim in the river any longer.
“I don’t feel comfortable swimming now,” Smyth told KFOR News in Oklahoma. “There’s no telling how long this has happened or if it’s happened more than once.”
Taylor says he was out boating on the Arkansas River with some friends in Pawnee County, Oklahoma when he saw what he first thought were discarded tackle boxes.
It was only after he got a closer look that he realized he was looking at five biohazard containment boxes filled with discarded medical waste.
Smyth typically takes his family swimming in the Arkansas River every summer weekend. Now, he’s not…
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In America: Imagine the World Without Her, self-styled historian Dinesh D’Souza, who has a bachelor’s in English, argues that the American Indian genocide did not happen and that the taking of Indian lands was justified because that’s how it goes when one group of people meets another—and besides, Indian tribes had taken land from other tribes and therefore it didn’t belong to them anyway.
RELATED: Dinesh D’Souza’s Buffoonery
Such outrageous statements from a right-wing extremist wouldn’t much matter, except that D’Souza’s work has received wide and vociferous acclaim and a state senator in Florida has introduced legislation that would make teachers show this pseudo-documentary to every 8th and 11th grader in the state.
D’Souza blames what he calls the “shaming of America” on leftist intellectuals Howard Zinn, Saul Alinsky and Noam Chomsky. He proposes a conspiracy, in which President Barack Obama is a participant, to destroy the American way of life, capitalism and the entrepreneurial spirit. Specifically, D’Souza sets out to answer allegations that America was built on the genocide of American Indians, the theft of half of Mexico and the backs of African American slaves.
D’Souza answers the charge of genocide this way: “In the two centuries after Columbus, the Native American population declined by 80 percent. But it wasn’t due to warfare. Rather, as historian William McNeil points out, they contracted diseases—measles, typhus, smallpox, cholera and malaria, to which they had no immunities. Now this is tragedy on a grand scale, but it’s not genocide because genocide implies an intention to wipe out a people.”
RELATED: You Won’t Believe This: Filmmaker Says Native Genocide Didn’t Happen
ICTMN asked three university professors to respond. Dr. James Riding In, Pawnee, associate professor of American Indian Studies at Arizona State University, says:
“D’Souza does not understand what genocide is. There is a UN convention that was adopted in 1948 that defines genocide. What the declaration on genocide says is that it’s the killing of members of a group… or causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group…[or] inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part… [or] imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group and forcibly transferring children to another group.
“All of these things happened to Indians. Yes, a lot of Indians died of disease and the population of the Americas declined over 90 percent after the arrival of Europeans. A big part of that population decline is attributed to disease, but there were survivors.
“Those survivors were trying to hold on to their culture, their beliefs, their way of life, their philosophies about life that had been developed in the distant past and were supposed to continue on indefinitely. What United States colonialism did was disrupt the future of Indigenous Peoples.”
Riding In notes, “U.S. policy was genocide. It was designed, to use the jargon of the time, to kill the savage and save the man. Well, there was a lot of killing of the man along the way. And women. And children.”
Forced sterilization of American Indian women, Riding In says, was federal policy from the 1960s probably into the 1990s. “Thousands of Indian women went through that process of sterilization,” he says.
Dr. Michael Yellow Bird, Three Affiliated Tribes, professor of sociology and director of Indigenous Tribal Studies at North Dakota State University, says of D’Souza: “I don’t consider him to be much of a scholar. There’s a lot of stuff he doesn’t even understand about history. People like him are given the podium to talk about issues as complex and as important as this and they do a lot of damage.
“It’s pretty clear that he doesn’t understand the United Nations convention on genocide. A number of those sections defining genocide are exactly what happened to indigenous people here. It says that genocide is taking children from one group and forcibly removing them and putting them in another group like they did to Indian children in boarding schools.”
Yellow Bird argues, “The convention was an agreement that the U.S. finally signed in 1988. So they’re in agreement that what they did was genocide. When they agreed to sign on to the convention, they in fact agreed they committed genocide.”
Riding In says about the taking of Indian land, “Forced removal of people from their lands is ethnic cleansing… [American Indians were taken away from] the land of their birth, the land of their sacred sites, the lands where their ancestors are buried. And they were forcibly removed without adequate provisions, oftentimes during the dead of winter and, if the people resisted, under military force, to new lands where they were supposed to start over again.”
Reservations became dying grounds for Indians, Riding In says.
Dr. K. Tsianina Lomawaima, Mvskoke/Creek Nation, professor of Justice & Social Inquiry and Distinguished Scholar of Indigenous Education at Arizona State University’s Center for Indian Education, School of Social Transformation, looks at the overall message of the film: “The film speaks to a profound American anxiety that is articulated by the actor portraying young Abraham Lincoln: that ‘America’ can only be threatened from within. That anxiety arises from a soil of inequity and injustice that cannot be ignored, even/especially by those peoples and classes who have most benefited.
“The defensive posture that informs every frame of the film predetermines the argument: any critique, any ‘indictment’ of the ‘American dream’ can only be read as a call for total destruction. No possibility of dialogue, no validity of multiple perspectives, no room (no need) for reform, no space to move from inequity to equity, from denigration of others to mutual respect.”
She continues, “D’Souza concludes that ‘The wealth of America isn’t stolen, it’s created.’ So is his history. It’s created from his imagination, of a shallow, homogenized, immature, defensive, and immensely entitled ‘America:’ a fantasy nation so insecure that facing historical and contemporary truths—that includes looking Native people in the eye as fellow citizens and as citizens of Native nations, not as mascots or wards—can only result in national suicide. What a sad vision. In whose imagination is this documentary inspirational?”
Florida State Sen. Alan Hays, who introduced bill S 0096 in the Florida State Legislature in December 2014 mandating the showing of this film to schoolchildren from Pre-K to grade 12, has not responded to repeated requests for an interview at press time. The bill was referred to the Appropriations Subcommittee on Education.
Published on 2 Mar 2015
ST. JOHN’S, N.L. – Lydia has her own Twitter account and a dorsal fin tracker that over the last two years has given scientists and the public first ever details about great white sharks.
Since she was tagged with a locator device off Jacksonville, Fla., on March 3, 2013, Lydia has travelled more than 56,000 kilometres over the mid-Atlantic ridge toward Europe and western Africa then back again.
She appears to be navigating an uncannily accurate pattern that had her making a beeline for the Florida coast almost exactly two years to the day she was tagged. In both years she swam from the southeastern United States up to the waters off Newfoundland before heading out into the open North Atlantic.
WATCH: Lydia visits Newfoundland in 2013
Almost 3,000 Twitter fans are following the five-metre, 1,400-kilogram shark…
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