The Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC)‘s Spring Conference & Networking Event in London is just days away, but you still have a chance to meet more than 150 key stakeholders, business partners and prospects active in the Iraqi market.
The Conference — Iraq: Rising Confidence — takes place on Monday 3rd April 2017 at the Mansion House in London.
Register now for your opportunity to:
Gain insights from senior Iraqi and UK politicians for trade strategies in the region
Become a supplier for active businesses in Iraq
Hear from UK Export Finance about loans available for investment in Iraq
Meet Iraqi businessmen and officials from all parts of the country
Mike Wenham, Vice President of Planning and Commercial Operations for BP Middle East will be a key panelist for the Oil & Gas Session. Mr Wenham is responsible for working on BP’s assets in Iraq, Oman, Kuwait and Abu Dhabi. His extensive knowledge of commercial relations in the Middle East will be of great interest to those looking for investment opportunities.
IBBC’s Spring Conference will attract many international companies, all currently active in Iraq. The event provides an opportunity for potential buyers and suppliers to meet key influencers and investors in the country.
Hear from and meet:
Frank Baker OBE, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Iraq
Mr Dara Rasheed, Deputy Minister of Housing, Construction and Municipalities, Government of Iraq
Marcus Antonini, Vice President and Country Chairman, Shell Iraq
Maeve Walsh, Deputy Director, Digital Economy Unit – DCMS
Alistair Kett, Partner, PwC
Yaltin Altimimi, CEO, ZainCash
Frederic Ribieras, CFO, Global Growth at General Electric (GE)
Christian Josz, Deputy Division Chief, Middle East and Central Asia Department, International Monetary Fund (IMF)
Dr Neill Quillam, Senior Research Fellow, Chatham House
Mike Wenham, Commercial Manager, BP
Fethi Kirdar, Chief Business Development Officer, Moby Group
Omar Hassan, Founder & CEO, Inevert
Louis Taylor, Chief Executive, UK Export Finance.
A full list of confirmed speakers is available here.
The IBBC Spring Conference at the Mansion House on the 3rd of April 2017 will focus on the rising confidence of Iraq’s private sector, bring to attention liberated areas open to investment, and discuss new areas for expansion, such as infrastructure and technology. The four conference sessions will focus on:
Session 1: Power
Session 2: Technology, Growth and Innovation
Session 3: Finance
Session 4: Oil & Gas
Session 5: Iraq after ISIS, Challenges and Opportunities
Register now for your exclusive opportunity to:
Gain Investment and financial insights into Iraq and the UK
Network with key industry figures, business partners, ministers and prospects.
Contribute your insights through panels and breakout sessions with your peers.
Enjoy business in the heart of London.
The registration fee for non-members is £800.* IBBC members and members of partner organisations are entitled to special discounted rates.
You can book your place by clicking here – we look forward to seeing you!
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The Iraqi government has received the consent of the U.S. Department of State to buy American weapons in the form of Foreign Military Sales (FMS) worth more than $22 billion over a 12 year period according to reports.
The United States has been Iraq’s primary arms supplier since 2005, with arms exports in 2016 including 146 M1A1 Main Battle Tanks, 36 F-16 fighter aircraft, 24 IA407 helicopters, and 9 C-130 cargo aircraft.
American arms exports to the Iraqi government last year also included an F-16 munitions package of short-range air-to-air missiles, laser-guided bombs and air-to-ground tactical missiles.
The U.S. State Department released a fact sheet on March 22 saying Congress has provided Iraq with funding of over $2 billion in the form of Foreign Military Financing (FMF) following the end of the last round of funding in 2012 by the Department of Defence.
“These funds were originally intended to build up Iraq’s long-term sustainment and logistics capabilities, and for Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) professionalization and other essential training however they were also critical to the Iraqi effort to blunt IS’s advance.”
Additionally, on March 25, the Iraqi Defence Ministry announced the arrival of four F-16 fighter jets to Balad Air Base in Salah-al-din Province as part of the deal with the USA. The defence ministry stated that “This is the fifth batch, with the new arrivals raising the total number of F-16 fighter jets in the Iraqi Air Force to 18“.
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By John Lee.
Iraq’s Ministry of Oil announced exports of 91.6 million barrels for February, earning revenue of $4.5 billion. This equates to 3.271 million barrels per day (bpd), and an average oil price of $49.127 per barrel.
The southern ports of Basra acconted for 90.8 million barrels, which brought in* $4.46 billion, while Kirkuk accounted for 800,000 barrels export and $4o million dollars revenue.
Oil Ministry Spokesman Assim Jihad said the oil was shipped by forty multinational companies from the ports of Basra, Khor Al-Omaya (pictured) and the single point moorings (SPM) on the Arab Gulf, and Ceyhan port in Turkey.
(Source: Ministry of Oil)
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From Al Jazeera. Any opinions expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.
There has been a dramatic rise in the number of civilians killed in the fight against ISIL in Syria and Iraq.
Rights groups who monitor deaths of civilians in both countries have said dozens of people have been killed this week in three separate air strikes.
Most of those who died were in the Iraqi city of Mosul.
The US-led coalition on Saturday admitted to carrying out air raids at a location in west Mosul where scores of civilians were reportedly killed last week.
Several more were killed in northern Syria, when bombs were dropped on a school sheltering people and on a mosque. The US is investigating the incident.
So, what is behind what appears to be an increase in the number of air raids against ISIL? And why has there been a sharp increase in the number of civilian deaths?
Presenter: Martine Dennis
Mark Kimmitt – retired US brigadier general who served as the deputy director of pperations and chief military spokesman in Iraq
Ahmed Rushdi – director of the House of Iraqi Expertise Foundation
Chris Woods – director of airwars.org, which tracks air strikes and civilian casualties in Iraq and Syria
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The Iraqi Red Crescent Society (IRCS) has announced that more than 170 thousand people have been displaced since the start of operations to liberate West Mosul.
In a statement, the IRCS said:
“IRCS teams has recorded more than 170 thousand displaced people since the operation of Mosul has launched, as IRCS teams are making extraordinary efforts to relief them. IRCS teams have distributed more than 30 thousand hot food meals daily and 40 thousand piece of bread as a staple food in al-jadaa, Hamam –al-alil, khazer, hasan al sham and jama kor camps, adding to distribute food meals for the families inside the liberated areas (Al –gazlani, kwar, the airport and some part of Talafer) of the right bank.
“IRCS teams are making extraordinary efforts to relief the displaced families and providing them with potable water, food, food and relief parcel adding to provide health and medical services for the displaced in the camps.“
The number of displaced people is expected to rise in the coming days.
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From Al Jazeera. Any opinions expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.
After recent heavy fighting in Mosul, Iraqi civil defence forces say they have pulled more than 200 bodies from the rubble in recent days.
The troops have been battling to push ISIL fighters from their last urban stronghold in the west of the city.
Al Jazeera’s Stefanie Dekker reports from Erbil.
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U.S. and coalition military forces continued to attack the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria on Saturday, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported yesterday.
Officials reported details of yesterday’s strikes, noting that assessments of results are based on initial reports.
Strikes in Syria
Coalition military forces conducted 18 strikes consisting of 38 engagements against ISIS targets in Syria:
Near Abu Kamal, two strikes destroyed 35 oil barrels, six oil refinement stills, and a well head.
Near Raqqa, four strikes engaged three ISIS tactical units, damaged a supply route, and destroyed a fighting position, a tactical vehicle and a mortar system.
Near Dayr Az Zawr, three strikes damaged a pump jack and destroyed two pump jacks and an oil rig.
Near Tabqah, nine strikes engaged five ISIS tactical units, damaged a supply route, and destroyed nine fighting positions, an improvised weapons facility and a weapons factory.
Strikes in Iraq
Coalition military forces conducted 12 strikes consisting of 55 engagements in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of the Iraqi government:
Near Qaim, a strike engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed a vehicle.
Near Beiji, a strike engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed an ISIS-held building.
Near Kirkuk, two strikes engaged two ISIS tactical units and destroyed an ISIS-held building.
Near Mosul, five strikes engaged five ISIS tactical units; damaged 11 supply routes and a fighting position; suppressed two ISIS tactical units; and destroyed seven fighting positions, four mortar positions, two tactical vehicles, a supply cache and a sniper weapon system.
Near Rawah, two strikes engaged an ISIS tactical unit and destroyed an ISIS-held building and an ISIS headquarters.
Near Tal Afar, a strike destroyed an ISIS-held building.
Part of Operation Inherent Resolve
These strikes were conducted as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, the operation to eliminate the ISIS terrorist group and the threat it poses to Iraq, Syria, the region and the wider international community. The destruction of targets in Syria and Iraq further limits ISIS’ ability to project terror and conduct operations, officials said.
The list above contains all strikes conducted by fighter, attack, bomber, rotary-wing or remotely piloted aircraft; rocket-propelled artillery; and some ground-based tactical artillery when fired on planned targets, officials noted.
Ground-based artillery fired in counterfire or in fire support to maneuver roles is not classified as a strike, they added. A strike, as defined by the coalition, refers to one or more kinetic engagements that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single or cumulative effect. For example, task force officials explained, a single aircraft delivering a single weapon against a lone ISIS vehicle is a strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against a group of ISIS-held buildings and weapon systems in a compound, having the cumulative effect of making that facility harder or impossible to use. Strike assessments are based on initial reports and may be refined, officials said.
The task force does not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target.
(Source: US Dept of Defense)
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By John Lee.
The United Nations has advertised new positions in Iraq:
Logistician, Cooperazione Internazionale Fondazione (COOPI)
National Security Officer, United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI)
Heavy Vehicle Operator, United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI)
Information Systems Assistant, United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI)
Chief of Mission, International Organization for Migration (IOM)
Programme Accountant, Concern Worldwide
Information Management Officer for Food Security Cluster (FSC), World Food Programme (WFP)
Logistics Assistant (LTSH), World Food Programme (WFP)
Logistics Assistant, Nineveh, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
Logistics Officer, Nineveh, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
Human Resources Officer, Nineveh, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
Monitoring & Evaluation Officer/Accountability, Nineveh, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
Finance Officer, Nineveh, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
Finance Assistant, Nineveh, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
Camp Management Officer, Nineveh, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
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Welcome to Donald Trump's Ignorant America
Arts and humanities get at the truth of things – so naturally Trump's administration plans to defund them
The day before Donald Trump's inauguration as president of the United States – an actual event taking place in the universe we live in – news broke that his administration plans to eliminate the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities. And I wanted to scream.
Trump's Presidency Is Shaping Up to Be an American Tragedy
His administration is likely to be just as bad as you think – and possibly worse
This is Donald Trump's America: one where things like art and books and science and learning and thoughtful consideration of complicated problems are deemed worthless and tossed aside. This can't be surprising after the Trump we saw on the campaign trail, the man who never answered a question with a hint of intelligence or depth. In an interview this week, he couldn't name a single book he's reading. He's appointed a secretary of education who wants to destroy public schools. He reportedly offered a notorious anti-vaccination activist a position leading a commission investigating vaccines. He called global warming a Chinese hoax.
Of course he's getting rid of the NEA and the NEH. What use does Donald Trump have for the things that make life beautiful and good? He surrounds himself with gilded ugliness. He's a billionaire who hangs a Renoir reproduction in the $100 million abattoir he lives in, because why would he want an original? He has enough money and fame to access to the finest tailors in the world, and his suits don't fit. His hair is stupid.I know, I'm petty. I'm a snob. I'm a liberal elitist, and elitist liberal snobbery is why Trump won. You know what? I don't care. I'm tired of shouldering the burden of cultural empathy when no one asks the folks who voted for the racist, misogynist manbaby to take two damn seconds to consider the moral implications of putting an ignorant pussy-grabber into the most powerful job on the planet.
We have a president who doesn't read books. He doesn't read books. Even George W. Bush read books, and he still managed to destroy the economy and entangle us in two unwinnable wars. What horrors will Trump visit upon the nation and the world? How will he change America for the worse?
Of course Donald Trump wants to destroy the government's (frankly meager) efforts to promote the humanities and the arts. It's not just that those things have never made the slightest impact on his life. (Imagine having a thoughtful discussion with Donald Trump about a piece of art. A painting. A song. A poem.) The arts and humanities are tools for getting at the truth of things. Trump hates the truth. He drapes himself in comforting lies about everything from the size of his hands to the size of his Electoral College victory. He doesn't just lie constantly, he labels the truth a lie, the tellers liars.
We won't fund public art programs, but we'll have Breitbart in the White House briefing room. We won't fund historical preservation projects or cultural explorations, but the president will attack journalists on Twitter.
Trump doesn't have plans to make America great again; he's going to remake America in his own image. He thinks art means plaster statues of eagles that look like they came out of SkyMall. He thinks news comes from Morning Joe and Fox & Friends. He separates books into two categories: those with his face on the cover and those without. (He doesn't read either kind.)
Trump doesn't represent a shift to the right; this is more cataclysmic than a simple change of party. Donald Trump represents the dark side of human nature: ugliness, ignorance and fear. He wants to build a giant wall, an act contrary to the idea of art. He won on the promise of banning a religion from immigrating, a rejection not just of an entire culture but of the idea of culture itself.
This is our new president: a man who revels in rejecting truth and anything that helps us find it. He wants to make America look more like him. We can't let that happen.
More than 50 House members, representing more than 10 percent of Congress, have said they'll skip this week's festivities.
POLITICS 01/26/2017 08:13 pm ET | Updated Jan 27, 2017
Trump Acts To Sabotage Obamacare Enrollment, Days Before Deadline
He ordered the government to halt ads and emails, which could mean fewer signups and higher premiums.
President Donald Trump isn’t waiting for Congress to repeal the Affordable Care Act. He’s trying to undermine it right now.
As Politico’s Paul Demko first reported on Thursday evening, the Department of Health and Human Services has cancelled a final burst of television and radio advertising designed to encourage people to sign up for Obamacare insurance plans.
The Obama administration had arranged for the ads, and paid for them, before leaving office. A senior HHS communications adviser, who declined to give his name, said the Trump administration decided to stop the advertising for the sake of efficiency, and to save on the $5 million that the campaign would have cost.
“We aren’t going to continue spending millions of taxpayers’ dollars promoting a failed government program,” the HHS official said. “Once an assessment was made, we pulled back the most expensive and least efficient part of this massive ad campaign, which was set to run over the weekend. Those costs savings will be returned to the U.S. Treasury.”
Demko’s story reported that HHS was also halting other efforts, as well, including direct emails and automatic phone calls to individuals who had previously registered at Healthcare.gov (the government’s website for buying insurance) and had yet to get coverage.
But some outreach emails went out on Friday anyway, and it wasn’t clear whether the Trump administration had always intended to continue the email effort, whether administration officials had changed their minds, or whether the Friday emails were the result of some kind of administrative error.
(The unnamed HHS official told The Huffington Post that email and automatic phone calls were among the outreach tools that “remained available” to the agency, but he would not clarify exactly what that meant.)
Whatever the precise details of the policy change, the timing is critical. The open enrollment period for 2017 ends next week, on Jan. 31, and traditionally, signups have surged in the final days before the deadline.
Those late signups don’t merely boost the program’s enrollment numbers. They also help insurers to hold down premiums.
That’s because insurance depends on premiums from healthy people to underwrite the medical bills of the small minority with serious health problems. And people in relatively good health are precisely the types to postpone enrolling until the very last minute.
Department of Health and Human Services
During last year’s open enrollment, for example, the percentage of 18-to-34-year-olds signing up for coverage increased with time. It would spike at each meaningful deadline, such as the final day to get coverage in time for Jan. 1, and then again the final day to get coverage for the year.
In the week of that last deadline, young people made up 37 percent of enrollees, up from 22 percent at the start of open enrollment.
Thursday’s news came just hours after Trump addressed fellow Republicans in Philadelphia, and repeated an argument he and other GOP leaders have made many times: that the Affordable Care is collapsing because insurers, unable to attract a balanced risk pool, have been losing money, raising prices, and in some cases pulling out of markets altogether.
Reality is actually quite different. Although insurers in many states have struggled, markets in other states are stable. Recent news suggests that this year’s steep price increases for some may be a one-time correction.
Meanwhile, the number of Americans without health insurance has plummeted to a historic low and, this year, enrollment has actually been running slightly ahead of last year’s pace.
At least, it had been running ahead ― until now.
Kevin Counihan, who was chief executive officer for HealthCare.gov and before that managed the state exchange in Connecticut, warned that halting outreach now could undermine the program in the future.
“The Trump administration’s outrageous decision tonight to sabotage open enrollment will mean coverage could cost more next year and insurers could drop out of the marketplace,” Counihan said.
“Having health insurance is still law of the land,” Counihan said. “If the president and Republicans in Congress want to change that, they should come up with a plan and show it to the American people, rather than depriving Americans of the chance to sign up for coverage and financial assistance they remain eligible for.”
Josh Peck, who worked on the last three open enrollment periods and just stepped down as chief marketing officer for Healthcare.gov, told The Huffington Post that HHS did extensive research into which outreach efforts worked and tailored its campaigns accordingly ― focusing specifically on those most likely to yield the most signups. HHS found that simply reminding people of the final date, particularly by email, was the most effective tactic, Peck said.
Peck noted that HHS doesn’t spend money on emails, the way it does for television or digital ads, so canceling those would seem particularly ill-advised.
“They are shutting down outreach efforts that are effectively free,” Peck said. “One of the most effective things we do in the final days is to email people, just to let them know the date of the deadline. That’s all bought and paid for already. Taxpayers will not save a single cent by not sending emails in those final days. I can’t fathom what claim of efficiency can be involved there.”
The HHS official said the department would continue to answer email and telephone questions about enrollment. He added that radio and television advertising would continue to run where it was not possible to get the money back.
And Donaldof Trumpler goes from Bad to Worse:
POLITICS 03/25/2017 02:23 am ET | Updated 1 day ago
Inspector General Probes Trump Administration’s Move To Pull Obamacare Enrollment Ads
Halting outreach for ACA enrollment could “contribute to weakening healthcare marketplaces and raising costs,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren says.
The Department of Health and Human Services inspector general has launched an investigation into the Trump administration’s decision to pull ads encouraging people to sign up for the Affordable Care Act during the enrollment period. By shutting down such outreach, the action could be seen as a stealth way to starve the health plan without legislative authority, critics say.
President Donald Trump’s administration said the ads were a waste of money, but Democrats have characterized the action as sabotage.
In response to a request to investigate the actions from Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), the inspector general said his office is conducting a “fact-finding” review, the Hill reported.
The office will examine exactly what was done and when by the administration, and its effect on enrollment in the health plan, according to a letter written to the senators Thursday. Dwindling numbers of consumers enrolled in any insurance undermines an affordable risk pool.
“We will conduct a fact-finding review of HHS’s decision related to halting (and resuming, as applicable) paid advertisements, email, social media, and other outreach efforts related to marketplace enrollment in 2017,” HHS Inspector General Daniel Levinson wrote in the letter to the senators.
Warren welcomed the “independent review of the Trump administration’s decision to cut off efforts to enroll people” in the Affordable Care Act. The health department’s “move to halt outreach for ACA enrollment could contribute to weakening healthcare marketplaces and raising costs for hard working people across the country,” she added.
Obamacare remains the “law of the land,” House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said Friday, after the GOP health plan was pulled before a vote because Republican leaders did not have the support needed to pass it.
There are concerns that enrollment may have been hurt when the Trump administration suddenly ended the ads and other outreach in late January just days before the end of open enrollment in Obamacare. Some 12.2 million Americans signed up for the plan during the enrollment period through HealthCare.gov and state insurance markets, but that was lower than expected.
Now that he has lost his fight to pass his own version of a health insurance system, Trump has repeated his plan to let the Affordable Care Act “explode,” which could include further plans to discourage enrollment. Fears about the plan and the Trump administration’s disdain for it could also drive consumers away, critics say, which could be seriously damaging to the health plan system.
Exactly my point...thank you Wolverine for confirming what millions and millions of Americans suspects, and of course, many members of the GOP and the House, and the FBI and the CIA and everyone who knows and understands the precarious position that Donaldof Trumpler and his legion of minions put this country.....and below is the reason why:
Can you see the answer to the WHY? clearer now?
McCain: "The New World Order Is Under Enormous Strain"
by Tyler Durden
Mar 25, 2017 10:25 PM
It was a bumper day for John McCain when on Friday Donald Trump's Republican nemesis gloated as Trump's "art of the deal" collapsed in the last minute, after the President and Ryan-led effort to repeal Obamacare suffered what appears to be a terminal setback. In the wake of Trump's misfortune, McCain renewed his calls on Friday for a return to a legacy neocon status quo, when speaking at the Brussels forum, said that the world "cries out for American and European leadership" through the EU and Nato, and said that the EU and the US needed to develop "more cooperation, more connectivity".
In a "new world order under enormous strain" and in "the titanic struggle with forces of radicalism … we can't stand by and lament, we've got to be involved," said McCain who is now chairman of the armed services committee in the US Senate, quoted by the EU Observer . "I trust the EU," he said, defending an opposite view from that of US president Donald Trump, who said in January that the UK "was so smart in getting out" of the EU and that Nato was "obsolete". He said that the EU was "one of the most important alliances" for the US and that the EU and Nato were "the best two sums in history", which have maintained peace for the last 70 years.
Further attacking Trump's global worldview, McCan said that "we need to rely on Nato and have a Nato that adjusts to new challenges." He noted that "the EU has too many bureaucrats, not much bureaucracy," but added that "it's not the only place on earth with that problem." He said that he was "still wondering what the overall effect of Brexit will be" and that he did not know "if this is the beginning of a serious problem for the EU". McCain did not disagree, however, with Trump's demand that European countries increase their defense spending for Nato.
McCain also revealed he hasn’t met the President Donald Trump in person since he took office, and he urged Trump to reach out to his opponents—Democratic and otherwise—ala Ronald Reagan if he wants to repeal Obamacare. “Do some outreach. Get to know some of these Democratic leaders,” he said. “You can find common ground.” McCain said he’d met Trump “some years ago” when he was a businessman, but had not met him since. McCain said he did speak “almost daily” to National Security Adviser Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, however.
“He doesn’t seem to be that upset that he’s not talking to him,” said German Marshall Fund’s Derek Chollet, a former Obama Pentagon official. “He’s trying to run U.S. defense policy through Mattis and effectively ignore Trump.”
That said, McCain also said it was "too early" to pass judgment on his presidency, although his series of critical comments in recent weeks have demonstrated his growing skepticism about the Trump administration.
Furthermore, while McCain said he was "very pleased" by Trump's picks for his national security team - despite suggesting that they were being bypassed by more ideological and less competent people - he took the opportunity to attack Trump's decisionmaking, saying "the question is: who does the president listen to, who drives the tweets at 6 in morning?”, he said.Asked whether he thought that "Russia owns a significant part of the White House," he said: "I don't worry about that."
The unspoken suggestion: Russia.
What worries McCain, he said, was "the Russian role in our elections", even if he admitted that he has seen "no evidence they succeeded” in affecting the outcome of last year's US vote. Noting that Russia was now trying to influence elections in France and in Germany, he said that if it succeeded it would be "a death warrant for democracy".
"It's an act of destruction that is certainly more lethal than dropping some bombs," he insisted. McCain, a Russia hawk, said that Putin wanted to restore the Russian empire: “He wants the Baltics, he has taken Crimea, he's been in Ukraine."
"These are KBG thugs, my friends," he said, referring to the former Russian spy service for which Putin used to work. He added that the US needed to "respond accordingly". He said however that there was "nothing wrong" if Trump met Putin.
"I'm not against meeting," he said, reminding the Brussels forum that US presidents met Soviet leaders during the Cold War. But he added that "the best way to go to a meeting is with a strong hand" and that was not the case for the US right now.
Trump’s Next Challenge: Russia Returns to Afghanistan
America’s 16-years in Afghanistan has so far resulted in 2,216 dead soldiers, 20,049 casualties, and an estimated $800 billion in direct war costs -- not including veterans’ health and pension payments that could reach $400 billion before it’s all over. Add another $100 billion of USAID reconstruction costs, which is more than the cost of the Marshall Plan to rebuild western Europe, adjusted for inflation, and you’re well over a trillion dollars.
The Pentagon still has 8,400 troops in place, a figure Defense Secretary James Mattis may alter, which is why it’s especially troubling that Russia has decided to flex its territorial muscles and perhaps test the new Trump administration’s resolve.
Russia stayed well clear of Afghanistan once the Soviet army was forced to retreat in 1989 after a decade of war. Now it’s back, “keen to enter the scene in a big way,” says Michael Kugelman of the Woodrow Wilson International Center.
This is not good news for strategists in Washington. Russia’s now supplying military and economic assistance to the Kabul regime. It’s also attempting to broker peace talks between the government and the still-insurgent Taliban, and Kabul is listening.
What this means is very simple: Afghanistan’s turning into another competitive arena between Moscow and Washington. Events have moved swiftly since the start of the year. Moscow is advancing the peace process it launched in December with a group that includes China and Pakistan, the latter a U.S. ally and one of Russia’s longtime adversaries.
Not to be missed, Russia is also bringing the Taliban into this process, as Zamir Kabulov, Moscow’s special envoy to Afghanistan, confirmed last month. That puts Russia directly at odds with U.S. strategy.
When Rex Tillerson goes to Moscow next month, it’s safe to assume that Afghanistan will be added to his list that includes Ukraine and Syria. How will Tillerson handle this? Depending on how he plays it, Afghanistan could easily turn into one more reason President Trump’s idea of a new détente with Moscow won’t happen.
The U.S. has three current objectives: Defend the National Unity government in Kabul, fight the Islamic State, active in Afghanistan since 2014, and hold territory recaptured from the Taliban last year.
None of this is going especially well, which leaves the strategy vulnerable to challenge. The Kabul government is fractious, the Taliban plans to target provincial capitals in a spring offensive, and ISIS has expanded from its stronghold in the east of the country. Earlier this month it launched an attack against an Afghan military hospital in the capital.
Why is Russia suddenly so interested in Afghanistan? Its main concern is ISIS’ presence in a tenuously governed nation not far from its southern border. Militants from Uzbekistan, a former Soviet republic, are already fighting with ISIS in Afghanistan.
The fear of ISIS is understandable. More worrisome in Washington and among U.S. military commanders is Moscow’s decision to work with the Taliban as an ally fighting the Islamic State.
Russia’s new design in Afghanistan marks a big reversal in a couple of ways. After the September 11, 2001, attacks, Vladimir Putin was the first world leader to telephone the Bush White House to offer assistance. He quickly granted the Pentagon overflight privileges as it launched its initial campaign in Afghanistan, which Putin supported.
In subsequent years, Russia gave Kabul modest amounts of aid, including military assistance, approved by the NATO–Russia Council. But that changed with the crisis in Ukraine—another theater of U.S.–Russian contention where the clock is still ticking. In Afghanistan, what was once cooperation now has a competitive edge.
There’s a larger reason Tillerson must discuss Afghanistan in Moscow next month. Russia and China are both laying the groundwork for a unified Eurasia to match the Atlantic alliance. It’s early days, but this is the biggest challenge to Washington’s global leadership now on the horizon.
Russia has its Eurasian Economic Union and China its “new silk road” and its Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which convenes China and the Central Asian republics. Afghanistan’s a piece of this picture. That’s why Beijing is on board as a key participant in the Moscow-sponsored peace process now getting under way.
WorldThe coincidences mount, as another Putin critic is shot dead
An outspoken critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin was shot dead in broad daylight in Kiev Thursday, just two days after a lawyer for the family of a slain Russian whistleblower was injured in a mysterious fall from his fourth-story apartment near Moscow.
Denis Voronenkov was a former Russian Communist Party member who’d become increasingly critical of Putin’s policies after fleeing to Ukraine in 2016.
In light of his murder, which Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko called an “act of state terrorism by Russia,” the Washington Post’s Moscow Bureau Chief David Filipov compiled a list of nine other Putin critics “who died violently or in suspicious ways.”
As it has after similar incidents, the Kremlin swiftly rejected any suggestion it was involved in Voronenkov’s murder. Still, Filipov argued, the people on his list had more in common than simply disapproving of the president.
“There’s a specific group of people who have ended up dead in suspicious circumstances,” he told Yahoo News and Finance Anchor Bianna Golodryga Friday.
Whether they were journalists, oligarchs or former KGB agents, almost all of the people on Filipov’s list had either been investigating alleged human rights abuses by the Russian military in Chechnya or the suspicious 1999 Moscow apartment bombings that prompted Russia to declare war on Chechnya and ultimately paved the way for Putin to become president in 2000, or they were raising questions about deaths of other people who’d tried to investigate these things.
“Essentially, it’s all about the rise to power of Putin in the late ’90s and the Chechen that provided the sort of impetus” for his presidency, said Filipov.
This pattern, he said, compounded by the fact that these cases have never been solved, creates a perception that “if you criticize the Kremlin, you’re risking your life.”
However, despite plenty of “circumstantial evidence that critics of Putin end up dead,” Filipov clarified that it’s impossible to say whether he actually ordered that they be murdered or, in some cases, even wanted them dead.
For example, Putin expressed shock and outrage over the mysterious shooting of former political ally-turned-opposition leader Boris Nemtsov outside the Kremlin in 2015, vowing to ensure punishment for “the perpetrators of this vile and cynical crime.”
Over the course of Putin’s presidency, Nemtsov had become increasingly critical of the government, speaking out against human rights abuses in Chechnya, corruption, and, shortly before his death, Russian military involvement in Ukraine.
Still, Filipov said he believes Nemtsov’s murder, with four shots to the back outside the Kremlin, was not orchestrated by Putin.
“One thing people have to always consider when something goes wrong in Russia: While Putin might be ultimate authority, there are people going around hoping to get Putin’s approval,” he said, suggesting that this interest may drive people who run private security companies or work for oligarchs to think, “If we get rid of this guy, it will be good for the boss.”
“The way they say it in Russia is, ‘Nothing happens until one guy makes up his mind, but there’s 10 guys standing in line with a piece of paper saying, please make up your mind in my direction,’” Filipov said. “One theory is people do things to get attention, to get the head of that line.”
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The whole Trump growth story is about to face a huge challenge
With the first quarter coming to a close, the accepted narrative that this is going to be a breakout year for the economy is coming under closer scrutiny.
The Trump rally in the stock market has been predicated on the notion that a pro-growth agenda will lift the economy out of its plodding post-financial crisis recovery. Sentiment surveys have indicated big hopes for the future. However, that optimism has been slow to show up in actual hard data.
So as March turns to April, initial readings loom on how the economy has done in a broad sense. Much is at stake.
"When you've got unbridled enthusiasm, people get excited about stuff, and then it runs up against fact," said Michael Yoshikami, CEO and founder of Destination Wealth Management. "The sentiment could change in a heartbeat as soon as a small group of facts conflicts with the sentiment."
The jitters have been further propelled by the ongoing political stalemate over health-care reform. Wall Street is worried that if President Donald Trump and Congress cannot agree on a measure, it will derail promised tax cuts and regulatory relief.
The current state of the financial markets is a conflict between equity investors who have pushed the S&P 500 up about 9.6 percent since the November election, and fixed income investors who have held government bond yields — typically a proxy for growth expectations — in check.
"There's a pretty clear signal the bond market is sending, which is that facts aren't being priced in by the market," Yoshikami said.
The slide from February to March
Investors have been nervous about growth, and that anxiety has been exacerbated by a closely watched indicator: the Atlanta Fed's GDPNow tracker, which keeps a running tally on how quarterly growth is progressing.
That certainly wasn't the way things were supposed to go. And it may not in fact be an accurate picture of what's really happening.
In an analysis released Thursday night, Goldman Sachs asserted that first-quarter growth actually may be close to double what the Atlanta Fed thinks — more like 1.8 percent than the barely 1 percent indicated by the central bank's tool.
Hill addresses a central sticking point in the current growth quandary: the difference between "hard" and "soft" data.
The former refers to actual reports on spending, manufacturing, sales and the like. The latter consists primarily of sentiment surveys from consumers, investors and business executives about anticipated activity ahead.
Friday brought another round of decidedly mixed hard data.
Durable goods orders grew a better-than-expected 1.7 percent overall, but internal numbers were softer. Excluding transportation, the gain was just 0.4 percent, a little lower than estimates, while orders actually declined by 0.1 percent.
The importance of the numbers, particularly orders, is that it points to a softer outlook for business investment, considered a cornerstone for future growth.
There are troubling signs again in the first quarter of 2017, and if the trends in hard data don't swing, it could pose a risk to Wall Street's momentum. Peter Boockvar, chief market analyst at The Lindsey Group, posed a series of critical questions for the economy:We certainly know the actual data in hand has lent itself to Q1 GDP growth of possibly no better than 1%. Are companies feeling better but not acting upon it just yet? Is it just the reality that we are late cycle in this recovery and we've pulled forward so much economic activity that it's just natural to slow down? Are companies worried about higher interest rates and thus reigning in some optimism because corporate debt has exploded higher over the past 7 years? With the auto sector such a huge contributor to economic growth since the recession and now signs of sales and delinquencies rolling over, is the ripple effect filtering into other areas?
His unsettling conclusion: "I would say all of the above."
Intel chair Nunes admits mishandling Trump wiretap claim
House intelligence committee chairman Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., apologized to members of the panel today for his public claims about intelligence community surveillance of President Trump’s transition team amid charges from Democrats that his unilateral announcement on the White House lawn had “betrayed” the panel’s bipartisan investigation of Russian cyberattacks on the 2016 election.
“At this point, the committee’s independence is on life support,” Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., told Yahoo News after a closed-door meeting of the committee Thursday.
“Not since Sept. 11 has this committee been charged with such an important responsibility,” Swalwell added, referring to the panel’s Russia probe. “And that requires independence and collaboration He has betrayed both of those.”
Swalwell’s comments followed an apparently tense meeting of the committee during which Democrats pressed Nunes on the source of his information that communications involving transition team members had been intercepted — a revelation that President Trump immediately claimed justified his March 4 tweets accusing President Obama of “wiretapping” his office at Trump Tower.
The Democrats also demanded to know why Nunes had not shared his new information with them before rushing to the White House to brief Trump and then talking to reporters on the White House lawn.
Nunes issued what sources described as a partial apology Thursday morning, acknowledging that he should have informed Democrats on the panel about his new information and promising to share it with them by Friday. He did not back off his claims, however, that intelligence community surveillance of foreign targets had “incidentally” picked up conversations that the targets had with members of Trump’s transition team.
“He just apologized; he didn’t specify what his apology was about,” Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., told reporters after the meeting, according to an NBC News account.
Intelligence community officials have long acknowledged that such “incidental” collection is not unusual. The identities of American citizens whose conversations are collected in that way are supposed to be “masked” or concealed when intelligence reports are circulated within the government. It is not clear whether Nunes had evidence that this was not done with Trump transition representatives; he seemed to be suggesting that the identity of members of the transition team could be inferred from the context.
NBC News national correspondent Peter Alexander reported that Nunes acknowledged that he might have mishandled the situation. “The president didn’t invite me over. I called down there and invited myself because I thought he needed to understand what I saw and that he needed to try to get information, because he has every right to see it,” Nunes said. “It’s a judgment call on my part. At the end of the day, sometimes you make the right decision, sometimes you don’t.”
Nunes declined to say where he saw the intelligence reports about the Trump transition surveillance, fueling suspicions among Democrats that he was, as one said, “put up” to make the claim by the White House in an effort to justify Trump’s tweets.
The incident raised questions about whether Nunes, who was a member of Trump’s transition team, has retained sufficient credibility to continue to run an investigation that, among other things, is looking into whether members of Trump’s campaign collaborated with Kremlin figures in the release of internal Democratic Party emails and documents stolen by Russian state-sponsored hackers.
“I think he sent a signal that as a member of the Trump transition team himself, he probably should not be intricately involved in this investigation,” said House Democratic leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi.
In one of the ironies of the incident, a Trump administration ally circulated a claim Thursday by ex-NSA contractor and fugitive Edward Snowden, who said in a tweet from Moscow that Nunes had a point.
“Right or wrong, if a spy agency — via any method — intercepts, copies, or otherwise reviews your communications, they have spied on you,” tweeted Snowden, whom Trump has previously called a “terrible traitor.”
Among those retweeting Snowden’s comment: Michael Cohen, who describes himself on Twitter as “personal attorney to President Donald J. Trump.”
I've never heard of them before....
Beny Wilson Iraqi RV Update - March 23, 2017
BREAKING NEWS IMF JUST ANNOUNCE TO ALL THE BANKS IN AND OUT SIDE OF IRAQ. THE FOLLOWING:
THIS IS A TRANSLATION FROM ARABIC.
" TO ALL LICENSES BANKS AND LICENSES MONEY TRANSFER TO ALL COMPANIES AND FINANCIAL AND INVESTMENTS AND BROKERS IN BUYING AND SELLING FOREIGN EXCHANGE CURRENCIES, APPROVE ALL COMPANIES FOR EXCHANGE RATE.
ACCORDING TO THE DECISION DATED THAT THE CENTRAL BANK OF IRAQ GRANTS THE INTERNATIONAL PRICE WHICH IS THE REAL EQUIVALENT RATE FOR THE FOREIGN CURRENCIES AND ORDER TO DETERMENT IT'S VALUE OF TRADING OF THESE CURRENCIES AND THE YEARLY REPORT. MORE OVER THE YEARLY REPORT SHOULD STATES CLEARLY THE ABOVE DATA THAT DEFINES THE REAL VALUE ACCORDING TO INTERNATIONAL RATING, DIRECTED TO THE BANKS AND FINANCIAL INSTITUTES THAT DEALS WITH THE MONEY AND FOREIGN MONEY"
WHAT THIS ANNOUNCEMENT MEANS?
IT MEANS THAT THE IMF IS GIVEN THE GREEN LIGHT TO ALL BANKS TO TRADE AND EXCHANGE THE IRAQI DINAR TO IT'S REAL VALUE!!!
For those of you who is being following in my Facebook Page and in my private chat rooms. knows exactly that I been telling you that there is no Dragon to follow or Elders or any other Aliens but the bankers.
People are waiting for the Arab Summit and what Abadi may announce to the world this Friday or Saturday?
But my Contacts in the UBS has told me that We need to wait for Saturday as They believe it's going to a FANTASTIC NEWS.!!
You can share this letter if you want to.
I also leaving you a site from the Ministry of Planning of Iraq. I believe this is a old information. but it's always good to know that the Iraqi government is ready for their new value of their currency.
Trump supporter: My husband is being deported Friday
As a popular Indiana restaurant owner faces deportation under President Trump’s immigration directives, his family becomes the latest in a series of Trump supporters to find campaign promises affecting their lives.
According to a report from Indiana Public Radio, Roberto Beristain’s family said he’s expected to be deported on Friday and has already been moved from the detention facility in Wisconsin where they had been visiting him. Beristain is the owner of Eddie’s Steak Shed in Granger, Ind., which he purchased from his sister-in-law earlier this month after eight years of working at the restaurant.
Beristain was detained during his routine voluntary check-in at the Immigration and Customs Enforcement office in Indianapolis in February. He immigrated to the United States from Mexico illegally in 1998, deciding not to return after a visit to a family member in California. According to his immigration lawyer, Beristain was in possession of a legal Social Security number, work permit and driver’s license after registering with ICE in 2000.
“We were for Mr. Trump,” said Beristain’s wife, Helen, in an interview with WSBT-TV. “We were very happy he became the president. Whatever he says, he is right. But, like he said, the good people have a chance to become citizens of the United States.”
“I understand when you’re a criminal and you do bad things, you shouldn’t be in the country. But when you’re a good citizen and you support and you help and you pay taxes and you give jobs to people, you should be able to stay.”
Helen and her family immigrated to the United States from Greece over three decades ago. She has three children with Beristain.
The Beristains are the latest in a series of Trump voters being surprised that the president’s campaign promises — both vague and specific — are affecting them. Headlines like the one in last month’s Washington Post — “These Iowans voted for Trump. Many of them are already disappointed” — are not uncommon, and the Twitter account titled Trump Regrets has already earned over 250,000 followers by simply retweeting users who say they are suffering from Trump buyer’s remorse. In February, Public Radio International reported on a group of Syrians turned away at the Philadelphia airport under Trump’s original travel ban despite holding U.S. visas.
“It was a shock,” said Syrian-American Sarmad Assali, a Trump supporter. “If had an issue with them entering the United States, we should have been told about it. It should have been discussed. We should be able to get some legal help in there. … The way they were returned in a two-hour period, it was just devastating.”
Last month the New York Times reported on an Illinois man named Juan Carlos Hernandez Pacheco, an undocumented immigrant who managed a restaurant in the city of Frankfort. In a county that backed Trump with 70 percent of the vote, residents were upset that the president who promised to deport undocumented immigrants was rounding up undocumented immigrants in order to deport them.
“I knew he was Mexican, but he’s been here so long, he’s just one of us,” Debra Johnson, a resident, told the Times.
“I think people need to do things the right way, follow the rules and obey the laws, and I firmly believe in that,” said Lori Barron, another member of the Frankfort community. “But in the case of Carlos, I think he may have done more for the people here than this place has ever given him. I think it’s absolutely terrible that he could be taken away.”
Assali’s relatives eventually made it into the United States and Hernandez was released after a stay in ICE detention, but it appears that Beristain will be deported barring an eleventh hour intervention.
A Change.org petition created by Beristain’s stepson Phil Kolliopoulos lays out how the Indiana man ended up in the federal immigration system:
In 2000, Roberto took his wife and stepson to see Niagara Falls. Due to a wrong turn, they ended up at the border of The United States and Canada and Roberto was detained. A bail was paid in the amount of $1500. Roberto was given a voluntary deportation order but with Roberto expecting his first child soon, this was not an option for him to leave. He believed to be the supportive and loving husband and father he was made to be.
South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg wrote an essay earlier this week about why Beristain should be allowed to stay, stating that “it is worth remembering that it’s not just Americans in New York or Los Angeles who believe that we need a more humane and rational system.” Mishawaka, where the Beristains live, and Granger, where the restaurant is located, are just outside South Bend.
Kolliopoulos told the South Bend Tribune that if Beristain were to be deported, he would have family in Mexico City, including his parents and children. The family expects it would take about nine months for Beristain to acquire a green card and return to the United States legally.
LOL....there you go...that is what you get for voting for The Puppet....
I will tell you what is going to happen next...Donaldof is going to issue free visas and most likely, citizenship to his Russians friends....then, he is going to import Russian teachers to teach Russian to this country, afterwards, Donaldof will then pass the law to have the Russian as our official language, then he will replace the dollar with the ruble..everything is falling in place for him..
House GOP abruptly scraps health care vote
WASHINGTON — House Speaker Paul Ryan suddenly pulled the President Trump-backed bill to repeal and replace Obamacare in a last-minute admission he was not able to marshal the required 216 votes Friday afternoon. “We were very close,” Trump said from the Oval Office late Friday afternoon. “We learned a lot about loyalty,” he later mused, adding that he would pivot to tax reform.
Trump had thrown his full endorsement to the health care bill in recent weeks and has long staked his reputation on being a master negotiator. The dropped vote also raises serious questions about how effective Ryan can be as speaker, and even arguably how long his speakership is going to last.
“I spoke to the president just a little while ago and I told him the best thing I think to do is to pull this bill, and he agreed with the decision,” Ryan said at a brief press conference shortly after canceling the vote.
“I will not sugarcoat this: This is a disappointing day for us. Doing big things is hard,” he added. “All of us, myself included, we will need time to reflect on how we got to this moment, what we could have done to do it better.”
Rep. Morgan Griffith, R-Va., said Ryan’s message to the caucus was to take a breather from health care. Griffith said they’ll come back to the issue within the year. When asked if he believed Congress would ever repeal Obamacare, Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa., a moderate Republican who opposed the AHCA, said he didn’t know.
On Friday morning, House leadership made last-minute changes to appeal to House Republicans’ conservative and moderate wings who were opposed to the package, the American Health Care Act, but it wasn’t enough to win their support.
With the crucial vote delayed, the blame game is likely to begin. At his press conference, Ryan attributed the failure to the “growing pains” that come from “moving from an opposition party to a governing party.” The speaker further insisted the bill came “really close” despite the defeat.
On Thursday night, Mick Mulvaney, Trump’s budget director, ratcheted up the pressure on Republicans, telling them to vote on the bill Friday or the White House would move on from the issue, leaving them “stuck with” the Affordable Care Act.
Mulvaney’s message, as well as a tweet calling out the conservative Freedom Caucus on Friday morning, raised the possibility that the president would blame House Republicans, not Democrats, for the legislation falling short.
Trump has previously said he thinks the smartest political move would be to let Obamacare exchanges “fail” and then blame Democrats. He repeated that point while speaking in the Oval Office on Friday. “I’ve been saying for the last year and a half that the best thing we can do, politically speaking, is let Obamacare explode. It is exploding right now,” the president said. He repeatedly bashed Democrats for their unanimous opposition to the GOP bill.
Ryan, in particular, may take heat, though members defended his leadership Friday. Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, said he would continue to back Ryan. “The speaker is a human being,” Barton said, who had to cope with the “diversity” of the GOP Congress.
“Paul’s done everything he can,” Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., told Yahoo News before the vote was pulled. “That’s a very tough job. He’s worked harder than anybody I’ve seen,” echoed Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas.
Others are likely to question Trump’s hardball negotiation strategy of forcing a vote before the caucus was united. White House press secretary Sean Spicer brushed off that suggestion earlier in the day. He pointed out that the U.S. is “not a dictatorship.”
As for Obamacare, Ryan said it’s here to stay — for now.
“Obamacare is the law of the land, it’s going to remain the law of the land until it’s replaced,” he said in response to a question. “We did not have quite the votes to replace this law. And so, yeah, we’re going to be living with Obamacare for the foreseeable future.”
He added, “I don’t know how long it’s going to take us to replace this law.”
Ha ha ha ha!! Since when? This man is the utmost American Patriot this country has ever produced. I wish I had a fraction of the resume this honorable Senator has and I know that the day he retires, an UN-fillable void will be left.
Not only that....he comes from a military lineage, something that YOU will NEVER, ever ever dreamed to have (probably you come from a couch potato background). I am sure of it.
I had the honor to meet this man in Baghdad, while your boy Donaldof was eating his juicy steaks at this mansion !!!
Boy...you need to check your facts....because what you are showing here is the enormity of how huge of an OXYMORON and politically blinded you are.
Funny thing, I bet that you voted for him when he ran for President....how hypocrite of you....!!!!!!
Winning! Palestinian Terrorist and Leader of Women’s March Stripped of U.S. Citizenship, Will Be DeportedCristina Laila Mar 24th, 2017 11:40 am 47 Comments
Convicted ‘Palestinian’ terrorist and leader of ‘A Day Without a Woman’ march, Rasmea Odeh, 69 is being stripped of her U.S. citizenship and will be deported to Jordan.
Odeh is being charged with immigration fraud for lying on her visa and citizenship forms about her past terrorist convictions and ties to terrorist groups.
Palestinian activist Rasmea Odeh will avoid jail but lose US citizenship https://t.co/jXv3QNBwrl pic.twitter.com/H0sC9phJqd
— Middle East Eye (@MiddleEastEye) March 24, 2017
The Daily Caller reports:
Rasmea Odeh, 69, will avoid jail time as part of the deal, the Rasmea Defense Committee announced on Thursday.
“She will plead guilty to Unlawful Procurement of Naturalization, lose her U.S. citizenship, and be forced to leave the country, but will exit the U.S. without having to serve any more time in prison or ICE detention, a victory, considering that the government had earlier fought for a sentence of 5-7 years.”
An activist with the Arab American Action Network, Odeh was alleged to be a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a designated terror group. She was convicted in Israel in 1970 of taking part in two bombings the year before, one at a supermarket in Jerusalem and another at the British consulate. Two Israeli students were killed in the supermarket bombing. Nine were injured in the two blasts.
Odeh was freed from prison in 1980 as part of a prisoner exchange. She emigrated to the U.S. in the 1990s and gained citizenship in 2004. She has denied taking part in the terrorist acts and has claimed that she was tortured and sexually assaulted by Israeli police to elicit her confession.
The left’s unholy alliance with Islam is very dangerous. They have fully embraced Islam as a pro-woman, pro-freedom faction when it’s actually the exact opposite. Feminists have reached a new level of insanity as Muslim women and the hijab are the new face of the movement.
This terrorist being stripped of her U.S. citizenship and being deported is a huge win for freedom! Hopefully this is the beginning of many many Muslims with terrorist ties being stripped of their citizenship and deported.
Why are they so scared?.....What are they hiding?......See, Donaldof Cried about "wiretapping" during the "sacred" elections...but....what is so sacred to him that he sold this country to the Russians in the name of making his business empire bigger, make his friends richer and making YOU pay for all of it....it is like this...why spend your own money when there are millions of poor souls who would pay for your and your friends lavish lifestyle at no cost to you?....well, that is Donaldof...The Puppet of Master Grand Putin and loyal to his motherland Russia.....
MS-13 Gang Member Deported 4 Times Sexually Assaults 2 Year-Old – Then Beats Her (VIDEO)
Jim Hoft Mar 24th, 2017 8:50 am94 Comments
MS-13 gang member Tommy Alvarado-Ventura was arrested in Long Island after sexually assaulting and beating a 2 year-old girl and stabbing the girl’s mother.
Alvaredo-Ventura had been deported four times.
<font color="#444444"><span style="font-family: Lato"><font size="5"><font color="#ff0000">
News 12 reported:A Hempstead man accused of sexually abusing a 2-year-old girl and stabbing two different women – all on the same night – was held without bail after his arraignment Thursday.
Police say Tommy Alvarado-Ventura beat and sexually abused his girlfriend’s daughter early Wednesday morning while her mother was at work.
He then allegedly went to El Mariachi Loco Bar in Hempstead, where he’s accused of getting into a fight with a 24-year old woman about purchasing marijuana.
Police say Alvarado-Ventura then followed that 24-year old woman to a back parking lot where he stabbed her multiple times, puncturing her lung.
Authorities say Alvarado-Ventura then returned to his girlfriend’s apartment. They say when the child’s mother got home, she found her daughter beaten.
House Intel Chair Calls FBI and NSA Chiefs for Closed Door Session – to Discuss Spying on Trump OfficialsJim Hoft Mar 24th, 2017 11:08 am 0 Comments
House Intelligence Committee Chair Rep Devin Nunes (R-CA) called an impromptu press conference Friday announcing that he’ll call both FBI Director James Comey and NSA Director Mike Rogers before a closed session of the House Intelligence Committee to discuss topics which “they couldn’t answer in a public setting.”
Nunes made headlines this week when he told reporters the Obama administration was caught spying on several Trump Transition Team members from election day to Inauguration Day in January.
Today Nunes said he was meeting with the FBI and NSA leaders behind closed doors.
Via Zero Hedge:
BREAKING: House Intelligence Committee chair Nunes says Trump's former campaign chairman has volunteered to be interviewed by the committee. pic.twitter.com/yb8OJnwETW
— CNBC Now (@CNBCnow) March 24, 2017
Nunes told reporters his questions to the intelligence chiefs could not be answered in public.
.@DevinNunes: "There are just questions that we have for Dir. Comey and Adm. Rogers probably that they couldn't answer in a public setting." pic.twitter.com/tEeJA6QDPx
— Fox News (@FoxN
ews) March 24, 2017
Potential ‘Smoking Gun’ Showing Obama Admin Spied on Trump Transition Team
Cristina Laila Mar 23rd, 2017 8:41 pm116 Comments
Republican congressional investigators expect a potential “smoking gun” showing that the Obama administration spied on the Trump transition team, and possibly the president-elect himself, will be produced to the House Intelligence Committee this week, a source told Fox News.
Via Fox News:Classified intelligence showing incidental collection of Trump team communications, purportedly seen by committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., and described by him in vague terms at a bombshell Wednesday afternoon news conference, came from multiple sources, Capitol Hill sources told Fox News. The intelligence corroborated information about surveillance of the Trump team that was known to Nunes, sources said, even before President Trump accused his predecessor of having wiretappedhim in a series of now-infamous tweets posted on March 4.
The intelligence is said to leave no doubt the Obama administration, in its closing days, was using the cover of legitimate surveillance on foreign targets to spy on President-elect Trump, according to sources.
The key to that conclusion is the unmasking of selected U.S. persons whose names appeared in the intelligence, the sources said, adding that the paper trail leaves no other plausible purpose for the unmasking other than to damage the incoming Trump administration.
The FBI hasn’t been responsive to the House Intelligence Committee’s request for documents, but the National Security Agency is expected to produce documents to the committee by Friday. The NSA document production is expected to produce more intelligence than Nunes has so far seen or described – including what one source described as a potential “smoking gun” establishing the spying.
The Obama administration including Obama himself must be brought to justice. The Obama administration is the most corrupt administration our country has ever seen. He won’t stop undermining President Trump with his shadow government until he is charged with his many crimes.
All the hacks who accused @realDonaldTrump of lying about being under Obama surveillance owe him a massive apology. https://t.co/sAXX7rbFj1
— Paul Joseph Watson (@PrisonPlanet) March 23, 2017