“Actually, throughout my life, my two greatest assets have been mental stability and being, like, really smart.”

  • Undercover agents target cybersecurity watchdog who detailed Israeli firm NSO’s link to #Khashoggi scandal

    Operatives with fake identities are pursuing members of #Citizen_Lab, the group that uncovered the connection between Jamal Khashoggi’s murder and Israel’s surveillance company #NSO
    The Associated Press | Jan. 26, 2019 | 4:19 PM

    The researchers who reported that Israeli software was used to spy on Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s inner circle before his gruesome death are being targeted in turn by international undercover operatives, The Associated Press has found.

    Twice in the past two months, men masquerading as socially conscious investors have lured members of the Citizen Lab internet watchdog group to meetings at luxury hotels to quiz them for hours about their work exposing Israeli surveillance and the details of their personal lives. In both cases, the researchers believe they were secretly recorded.

    Citizen Lab Director Ron Deibert described the stunts as “a new low.”

    “We condemn these sinister, underhanded activities in the strongest possible terms,” he said in a statement Friday. “Such a deceitful attack on an academic group like the Citizen Lab is an attack on academic freedom everywhere.”

    Who these operatives are working for remains a riddle, but their tactics recall those of private investigators who assume elaborate false identities to gather intelligence or compromising material on critics of powerful figures in government or business.

    Citizen Lab, based out of the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto, has for years played a leading role in exposing state-backed hackers operating in places as far afield as Tibet , Ethiopia and Syria . Lately the group has drawn attention for its repeated exposés of an Israeli surveillance software vendor called the NSO Group, a firm whose wares have been used by governments to target journalists in Mexico , opposition figures in Panama and human rights activists in the Middle East .

    In October, Citizen Lab reported that an iPhone belonging to one of Khashoggi’s confidantes had been infected by the NSO’s signature spy software only months before Khashoggi’s grisly murder. The friend, Saudi dissident Omar Abdulaziz, would later claim that the hacking had exposed Khashoggi’s private criticisms of the Saudi royal family to the Arab kingdom’s spies and thus “played a major role” in his death.

    In a statement, NSO denied having anything to do with the undercover operations targeting Citizen Lab, “either directly or indirectly” and said it had neither hired nor asked anyone to hire private investigators to pursue the Canadian organization. “Any suggestion to the contrary is factually incorrect and nothing more than baseless speculation,” NSO said.

    NSO has long denied that its software was used to target Khashoggi, although it has refused to comment when asked whether it has sold its software to the Saudi government more generally.

    The first message reached Bahr Abdul Razzak, a Syrian refugee who works as a Citizen Lab researcher, Dec. 6, when a man calling himself Gary Bowman got in touch via LinkedIn. The man described himself as a South African financial technology executive based in Madrid.

    “I came across your profile and think that the work you’ve done helping Syrian refugees and your extensive technical background could be a great fit for our new initiative,” Bowman wrote.

    Abdul Razzak said he thought the proposal was a bit odd, but he eventually agreed to meet the man at Toronto’s swanky Shangri-La Hotel on the morning of Dec. 18.

    The conversation got weird very quickly, Abdul Razzak said.

    Instead of talking about refugees, Abdul Razzak said, Bowman grilled him about his work for Citizen Lab and its investigations into the use of NSO’s software. Abdul Razzak said Bowman appeared to be reading off cue cards, asking him if he was earning enough money and throwing out pointed questions about Israel, the war in Syria and Abdul Razzak’s religiosity.

    “Do you pray?” Abdul Razzak recalled Bowman asking. “Why do you write only about NSO?” ’’Do you write about it because it’s an Israeli company?" ’’Do you hate #Israel?"

    Abdul Razzak said he emerged from the meeting feeling shaken. He alerted his Citizen Lab colleagues, who quickly determined that the breakfast get-together had been a ruse. Bowman’s supposed Madrid-based company, FlameTech, had no web presence beyond a LinkedIn page, a handful of social media profiles and an entry in the business information platform Crunchbase. A reverse image search revealed that the profile picture of the man listed as FlameTech’s chief executive, Mauricio Alonso, was a stock photograph.

    “My immediate gut feeling was: ’This is a fake,’” said John Scott-Railton, one of Abdul Razzak’s colleagues.

    Scott-Railton flagged the incident to the AP, which confirmed that FlameTech was a digital facade.

    Searches of the Orbis database of corporate records, which has data on some 300 million global companies, turned up no evidence of a Spanish firm called FlameTech or Flame Tech or any company anywhere in the world matching its description. Similarly, the AP found no record of FlameTech in Madrid’s official registry or of a Gary Bowman in the city’s telephone listings. An Orbis search for Alonso, the supposed chief executive, also drew a blank. When an AP reporter visited Madrid’s Crystal Tower high-rise, where FlameTech claimed to have 250 sq. meters (2,700 sq. feet) of office space, he could find no trace of the firm and calls to the number listed on its website went unanswered.

    The AP was about to publish a story about the curious company when, on Jan. 9, Scott-Railton received an intriguing message of his own.

    This time the contact came not from Bowman of FlameTech but from someone who identified himself as Michel Lambert, a director at the Paris-based agricultural technology firm CPW-Consulting.

    Lambert had done his homework. In his introductory email , he referred to Scott-Railton’s early doctoral research on kite aerial photography — a mapping technique using kite-mounted cameras — and said he was “quite impressed.

    We have a few projects and clients coming up that could significantly benefit from implementing Kite Aerial Photography,” he said.

    Like FlameTech, CPW-Consulting was a fiction. Searches of Orbis and the French commercial court registry Infogreffe turned up no trace of the supposedly Paris-based company or indeed of any Paris-based company bearing the acronym CPW. And when the AP visited CPW’s alleged office there was no evidence of the company; the address was home to a mainly residential apartment building. Residents and the building’s caretaker said they had never heard of the firm.

    Whoever dreamed up CPW had taken steps to ensure the illusion survived a casual web search, but even those efforts didn’t bear much scrutiny. The company had issued a help wanted ad, for example, seeking a digital mapping specialist for their Paris office, but Scott-Railton discovered that the language had been lifted almost word-for-word from an ad from an unrelated company seeking a mapping specialist in London. A blog post touted CPW as a major player in Africa, but an examination of the author’s profile suggests the article was the only one the blogger had ever written.

    When Lambert suggested an in-person meeting in New York during a Jan. 19 phone call , Scott-Railton felt certain that Lambert was trying to set him up.

    But Scott-Railton agreed to the meeting. He planned to lay a trap of his own.

    Anyone watching Scott-Railton and Lambert laughing over wagyu beef and lobster bisque at the Peninsula Hotel’s upscale restaurant on Thursday afternoon might have mistaken the pair for friends.

    In fact, the lunch was Spy vs. Spy. Scott-Railton had spent the night before trying to secret a homemade camera into his tie, he later told AP, eventually settling for a GoPro action camera and several recording devices hidden about his person. On the table, Lambert had placed a large pen in which Scott-Railton said he spotted a tiny camera lens peeking out from an opening in the top.

    Lambert didn’t seem to be alone. At the beginning of the meal, a man sat behind him, holding up his phone as if to take pictures and then abruptly left the restaurant, having eaten nothing. Later, two or three men materialized at the bar and appeared to be monitoring proceedings.

    Scott-Railton wasn’t alone either. A few tables away, two Associated Press journalists were making small talk as they waited for a signal from Scott-Railton, who had invited the reporters to observe the lunch from nearby and then interview Lambert near the end of the meal.

    The conversation began with a discussion of kites, gossip about African politicians, and a detour through Scott-Railton’s family background. But Lambert, just like Bowman, eventually steered the talk to Citizen Lab and NSO.

    “Work drama? Tell me, I like drama!” Lambert said at one point, according to Scott-Railton’s recording of the conversation. “Is there a big competition between the people inside Citizen Lab?” he asked later.

    Like Bowman, Lambert appeared to be working off cue cards and occasionally made awkward conversational gambits. At one point he repeated a racist French expression, insisting it wasn’t offensive. He also asked Scott-Railton questions about the Holocaust, anti-Semitism and whether he grew up with any Jewish friends. At another point he asked whether there might not be a “racist element” to Citizen Lab’s interest in Israeli spyware.

    After dessert arrived, the AP reporters approached Lambert at his table and asked him why his company didn’t seem to exist.
    He seemed to stiffen.

    “I know what I’m doing,” Lambert said, as he put his files — and his pen — into a bag. Then he stood up, bumped into a chair and walked off, saying “Ciao” and waving his hand, before returning because he had neglected to pay the bill.

    As he paced around the restaurant waiting for the check, Lambert refused to answer questions about who he worked for or why no trace of his firm could be found.

    “I don’t have to give you any explanation,” he said. He eventually retreated to a back room and closed the door.

    Who Lambert and Bowman really are isn’t clear. Neither men returned emails, LinkedIn messages or phone calls. And despite their keen focus on NSO the AP has found no evidence of any link to the Israeli spyware merchant, which is adamant that it wasn’t involved.

    The kind of aggressive investigative tactics used by the mystery men who targeted Citizen Lab have come under fire in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein sexual abuse scandal. Black Cube, an Israeli private investigation firm apologized after The New Yorker and other media outlets revealed that the company’s operatives had used subterfuge and dirty tricks to help the Hollywood mogul suppress allegations of rape and sexual assault.

    Scott-Railton and Abdul Razzak said they didn’t want to speculate about who was involved. But both said they believed they were being steered toward making controversial comments that could be used to blacken Citizen Lab’s reputation.

    “It could be they wanted me to say, ’Yes, I hate Israel,’ or ’Yes, Citizen Lab is against NSO because it’s Israeli,’” said Abdul Razzak.
    Scott-Railton said the elaborate, multinational operation was gratifying, in a way.

    “People were paid to fly to a city to sit you down to an expensive meal and try to convince you to say bad things about your work, your colleagues and your employer,” he said.

    “That means that your work is important.”

  • Venezuela Wants $1.2 Billion in Gold Back From Bank of England

    Nicolas Maduro’s embattled Venezuelan regime, desperate to hold onto the dwindling cash pile it has abroad, was stymied in its bid to pull $1.2 billion worth of gold out of the Bank of England, according to people familiar with the matter.

    The Bank of England’s decision to deny Maduro officials’ withdrawal request comes after top U.S. officials, including Secretary of State Michael Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton, lobbied their U.K. counterparts to help cut off the regime from its overseas assets, according to one of the people, who asked not to be identified.

  • Le shithole country se surpasse : Pompeo nomme Elliott Abrams envoyé spécial pour le Vénézuéla

    Le chef de la diplomatie américaine Mike Pompeo a nommé aujourd’hui un émissaire, Elliott Abrams, pour contribuer à « restaurer la démocratie » au Venezuela, où les Etats-Unis ont reconnu Juan Guaido comme « président par intérim » en lieu et place de Nicolas Maduro.

    Elliott Abrams, dont les grandes œuvres humanitaires sont ‘par exemple documentées ainsi sur Kikipédia :

    They accused him of covering up atrocities committed by the military forces of U.S.-backed governments, such as those in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, and the rebel Contras in Nicaragua.

    El Salvador

    In early 1982, when reports of the El Mozote massacre of hundreds of civilians by the military in El Salvador began appearing in U.S. media, Abrams told a Senate committee that the reports of hundreds of deaths at El Mozote “were not credible,” and that “it appears to be an incident that is at least being significantly misused, at the very best, by the guerrillas.”[13] The massacre had come at a time when the Reagan administration was attempting to bolster the human rights image of the Salvadoran military. Abrams implied that reports of a massacre were simply FMLN propaganda and denounced U.S. investigative reports of the massacre as misleading. In March 1993, the Salvadoran Truth Commission reported that over 500 civilians were “deliberately and systematically” executed in El Mozote in December 1981 by forces affiliated with the Salvadoran government.[14]

    Also in 1993, documentation emerged suggesting that some Reagan administration officials could have known about El Mozote and other human rights violations from the beginning.[15] However, in July 1993, an investigation commissioned by Clinton secretary of state Warren Christopher into the State department’s “activities and conduct” with regard to human rights in El Salvador during the Reagan years found that, despite U.S. funding of the Salvadoran government that committed the massacre at El Mozote, individual U.S. personnel “performed creditably and occasionally with personal bravery in advancing human rights in El Salvador.”[16] Unrepentant Reaganite Abrams claimed that Washington’s policy in El Salvador was a “fabulous achievement.”[17]


    When Congress shut down funding for the Contras’ efforts to overthrow Nicaragua’s Sandinista government with the 1982 Boland Amendment, members of the Reagan administration began looking for other avenues for funding the group.[18] Congress opened a couple of such avenues when it modified the Boland Amendment for fiscal year 1986 by approving $27 million in direct aid to the Contras and allowing the administration to legally solicit funds for the Contras from foreign governments.[19] Neither the direct aid, nor any foreign contributions, could be used to purchase weapons.[19]

    Guided by the new provisions of the modified Boland Amendment, Abrams flew to London in August 1986 and met secretly with Bruneian defense minister General Ibnu to solicit a $10-million contribution from the Sultan of Brunei.[20][21] Ultimately, the Contras never received this money because a clerical error in Oliver North’s office (a mistyped account number) sent the Bruneian money to the wrong Swiss bank account.[20]

    Iran-Contra affair and convictions

    During investigation of the Iran-Contra Affair, Lawrence Walsh, the Independent Counsel tasked with investigating the case, prepared multiple felony counts against Abrams but never indicted him.[20] Instead, Abrams cooperated with Walsh and entered into a plea agreement wherein he pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of withholding information from Congress.[22] He was sentenced to a $50 fine, probation for two years, and 100 hours of community service.

  • C’était téléphoné: Pence Pledged U.S. Backing Before Venezuela Opposition Leader’s Move

    The night before Juan Guaidó declared himself interim president of Venezuela, the opposition leader received a phone call from Vice President Mike Pence.

    Mr. Pence pledged that the U.S. would back Mr. Guaidó if he seized the reins of government from Nicolás Maduro by invoking a clause in the South American country’s constitution, a senior administration official said.

  • What does the US embassy in Baghdad export to Finland and dozens of other countries?

    More than a million kilograms of cargo were shipped from Baghdad to different parts of the world, reveals US embassies procurement documents.

    Mysterious cargo shipments from the US Embassy in Baghdad to other American embassies and consulates around the world have been revealed on a Wikileaks’ database. Procurement orders of US embassies are public documents, but #Wikileaks put them in a searchable database making it easier to analyse.


    According to Wikileaks’ database, orders to ship more than 540 tonnes of cargo to the US were made in May 2018. The same document shows other main delivery destinations included 120 tonnes of freight to Europe, and 24 tonnes to South Africa, South America and Central Africa respectively. In comparison, only two and a half tonnes of freight were moved within Iraq between Baghdad, Basra and Erbil International Airports. So, the export of items from Iraq appears to be the primary activity.


    The Wikileaks’ database findings coincide with the discovery of a previously undisclosed US Embassy warehouse near Malmi Airport, a storage facility suitable for receiving large truckloads of incoming freight. Documents also show that the US Embassy in Finland ordered a new security perimeter fence for the warehouse compound in April 2018. The purpose for the warehouse remains unknown.
    Related articles:

    Guarded warehouse near airport and mysterious cargos from Baghdad; what is the US embassy in Helsinki up to? 

    This latest uncovering of unusual US embassy activity follows the 2017 exposure of the US Consulate in Frankfurt being used for surveillance operations and as a buying and postal dispatch centre of spying equipment for other US consulates. These latest Wikileaks revelations raise concerns that the US Embassy in Baghdad may also serve as a hub for secret operations worldwide.

  • Fake Labour accounts fueling « anti-Semitism crisis »

    An investigation by The Electronic Intifada has documented 10 fake Twitter profiles posing as Corbyn supporters who have been posting virulent anti-Semitism.

    The accounts share sufficient similarities to indicate that the same person – or group – is running them.

    Without police involvement or a court case, it’s impossible to know for sure who is behind this troll network.

    But whoever it is, they are clearly attempting to smear Labour as an anti-Semitic party.

  • Hachemi détenue : Téhéran porte plainte

    Apparemment, il n’y a guère qu’un site iranien pour s’intéresser (en français) à l’arrestation de cette journaliste iranienne aux USA. 4 jours après les faits, RSF par exemple ne dit pas un mot sur cette affaire...

    Le ministère iranien des Affaires étrangères a condamné l’arrestation « illégale » et le traitement « inhumain » infligé à la présentatrice de la chaîne de télévision iranienne Press TV par des agents fédéraux aux États-Unis.

    Le porte-parole du ministère iranien des Affaires étrangères, Bahram Qassemi, a condamné cette arrestation mercredi dans une interview accordée au journal de l’IRIB, quelques heures après l’annonce de l’arrestation de Marzieh Hachemi en Amérique.

    La police américaine a arrêté Mme Hachemi, journaliste et présentatrice de la chaîne d’information iranienne Press TV en anglais, sans fournir de motif spécifique.

    La journaliste d’origine américaine qui voyageait aux États-Unis pour rendre visite à son frère malade et à d’autres membres de sa famille, a été arrêtée dimanche 13 janvier à l’aéroport international de Saint-Louis Lambert avant d’être transférée par le FBI dans un centre de détention à Washington.

    Qassemi a déclaré que le traitement infligé à la journaliste d’origine américaine de la chaîne iranienne constitue "une violation flagrante des droits de l’homme et montre que le gouvernement américain ne respecte aucun des principes qu’il utilise lui-même pour s’en prendre aux pays qui s’opposent à lui ».

    « L’arrestation brutale de la journaliste et le comportement humiliant infligé par les agents du gouvernement américain à cette musulmane pratiquante sont un exemple évident du comportement adopté par un régime d’apartheid contre ses citoyens qui ne sont pas de « la race blanche » », a déclaré le diplomate iranien.

    Il a ajouté que la République islamique demandait que ses droits fondamentaux soient octroyés à Mme Hachemi et qu’elle soit libérée "immédiatement et sans condition".

    Réagissant à l’arrestation de Mme Hachemi, le chef de la diplomatie iranienne, Mohammad Javad Zarif l’a qualifiée d’une action politique inacceptable qui viole la liberté d’expression demandant aux Américains de « mettre immédiatement fin à ce jeu politique ».

    #iran #usa #répression #arbitraire

    • Hier, 17/01/2018, Radio-Canada :

      Une journaliste d’un média iranien arrêtée aux États-Unis |

      Marzieh Hachemi, née aux États-Unis sous le nom de Melanie Franklin avant sa conversion à l’islam et son mariage avec un Iranien, a été arrêtée dimanche à l’aéroport de Saint-Louis (Missouri), selon des proches et amis de la journaliste cités par la télévision.

      M. Zarif a souligné que depuis son mariage avec un Iranien, Mme Hachemi est considérée comme une citoyenne iranienne. Or c’est « notre devoir de défendre nos citoyens », a-t-il ajouté.

      « Les Américains doivent immédiatement cesser ce jeu politique », a déclaré M. Zarif, demandant sa libération.

      « Comme vous le savez, dans le cadre de la lutte contre le terrorisme, les États-Unis peuvent arrêter quiconque et le détenir sans accusation pendant des semaines. Nous estimons qu’une action en justice ne serait pas efficace pour obtenir sa libération », a dit Payman Jabali, directeur de Press TV, à des journalistes à Téhéran.

      " Nous demandons aux États-Unis de préciser les charges qui pèsent contre elle. C’est un scandale pour cette soi-disant démocratie américaine. "
      Payman Jabali, directeur de Press TV

      M. Jabali a estimé que la journaliste pourrait avoir été visée pour des documentaires qu’elle a faits sur les activités américaines au Proche-Orient, sur l’islamophobie et d’autres sujets.

      Selon lui, elle a voyagé aux États-Unis pour rendre visite à « son frère malade et d’autres membres de sa famille ».

      Il a ajouté que tout ce qu’on lui avait donné à manger était du porc, interdit par l’islam.

      Le fils de la journaliste, Reza Hachemi, a été également interpellé aux États-Unis, mais a ensuite été libéré en attendant son procès, a ajouté le directeur de Press TV sans préciser l’âge du fils, s’il était avec sa mère au moment de l’arrestation ou les charges qui pèsent contre lui.

      Auparavant, Press TV a indiqué sur son site internet que les autorités américaines avaient « refusé jusqu’à présent de fournir le moindre motif à son arrestation ».

  • Sylvain Cypel démonte l’idée de Jean-Pierre Filiu selon laquelle il aurait existé un sionisme des origines humaniste et non raciste.

    Benyamin Nétanyahou. Fin ou accomplissement du rêve sioniste ?,2856

    Lorsque Filiu, en clôture de l’ouvrage, juge que « la rupture [de Nétanyahou] avec les pères fondateurs est historique », et lorsqu’il conseille « d’oser l’espoir et de renouer avec l’esprit des pionniers sionistes », il octroie au sionisme des fondateurs une attitude qu’il idéalise. Car non seulement le sionisme s’est bâti sur deux piliers : l’un dit « socialiste » et l’autre nationaliste, mais les deux ont, de tout temps, fonctionné autant dans le conflit que dans l’alliance. De fait, l’ethnicisme leur était, à tous deux, constitutif, comme l’a magistralement montré Zeev Sternhell dans Aux origines d’Israël. Entre nationalisme et socialisme (Fayard, 1996).

    Ce n’est pas le sionisme révisionniste qui a tenu le premier rôle dans la Nakba palestinienne (même s’il y a amplement participé), mais bien le sionisme qui se disait socialiste. C’est ce même sionisme socialiste qui dès la naissance d’Israël a repris dans son code législatif les « internements administratifs », mis en place par les autorités britanniques durant le mandat, cette possibilité d’emprisonner quiconque sans motif ni limite dans le temps et auxquels les Palestiniens sont soumis jusqu’à ce jour. C’est le sionisme travailliste qui, à la tête du Fonds national juif, a inscrit dans ses règlements l’interdiction de la vente de terre à des non-juifs — en d’autres termes l’impossibilité pour des citoyens palestiniens d’Israël d’acquérir des terres. La liste est longue des discriminations ethniques qu’Israël a imposées à sa minorité palestinienne restée vivre dans ses frontières dès les premières années de son existence, lorsque le sionisme travailliste dominait. Enfin, c’est sous le sionisme socialiste, dans les années 1960, que fut théorisée la légitimité de la « guerre préventive », contraire aux principes du droit international, que revendiquera Israël pour lancer la guerre dite « des Six-Jours » en juin 1967 (et en de multiples autres occasions). Bref, « l’esprit des pionniers » était moins reluisant que ne l’affirme Jean-Pierre Filiu. Et dans ses actes, Nétanyahou n’est pas toujours en rupture ; il est aussi, souvent, le continuateur de la geste sioniste, en plus exacerbée.

    Mon Dieu, on est 2019, et Filiu en est encore à ce genre d’élucubrations sur le gentil sionisme « socialiste » des origines…

  • The Twitter Smearing of Corbyn and Assange

    Analysis of 11 of these individuals has been undertaken to assess to what extent their tweets have linked Corbyn unfairly (for a definition see below) to Russia. The results show two things:

    – first, the smearing of Corbyn about Russia is more extensive than has been revealed so far;

    – second, many of the same individuals have also been attacking a second target – Julian Assange, trying to also falsely link him to the Kremlin.

    Many of these 11 individuals are associated with The Times and The Guardian in the U.K. and the Atlantic Council in the U.S. The research does not show, however, that these tweets are associated with the Integrity Initiative (see further below).

  • L’engouement pour la tenue palestinienne qu’a porté Rashida Tlaib pour son investiture au congrès est l’occasion de se souvenir de l’exposition « L’Orient des Femmes », début 2011 au Quai Branly :

    Les robes et tenues du Levant y étaient de véritables merveilles. Une petite vidéo sur l’expo :

    Je me demande où on peut voir ces robes depuis (je ne crois pas que ça faisait partie des collections exposées habituellement dans le musée).

    Sujet connexe : je ne sais pas comment on traduit l’anglais “throbe” en français. Au Levant, il me semble qu’on utilise directement la translittération de l’arabe – « dashdasha » – dans une conversation en français.

  • U.S. alone in its opposition to parts of a U.N. draft resolution addressing violence against girls - The Washington Post

    In the U.N. General Assembly on Monday, the United States found itself once again isolated on the world stage on two matters that are essential to women’s rights. It was the only country that opposed nonbinding language in a draft resolution designed to tackle violence against girls and women, as well as sexual harassment. It was also almost alone in its opposition to language used in another draft resolution against early and forced marriage — only the tiny Pacific island nation of Nauru felt comfortable with being on Washington’s side this time. (Nauru is most commonly associated with an Australian offshore migrant camp, where children and other refugees are being held under inhumane conditions, according to rights groups.)

    In both cases, the United States’ opposition on Monday was triggered by references to “sexual and reproductive health,” which the U.S. delegation implied could “suggest the promotion of abortion or a right to abortion that are unacceptable to our administration,” according to Reuters. U.S. statements also indicated that there were concerns about the resolution conflating “physical violence against women with sexual harassment.”

    #violence #filles #femmes #etats-unis

  • A Texas Elementary School Speech Pathologist Refused to Sign a Pro-Israel Oath, Now Mandatory in Many States — so She Lost Her Job

    A children’s speech pathologist who has worked for the last nine years with developmentally disabled, autistic, and speech-impaired elementary school students in Austin, Texas, has been told that she can no longer work with the public school district, after she refused to sign an oath vowing that she “does not” and “will not” engage in a boycott of Israel or “otherwise tak[e] any action that is intended to inflict economic harm” on that foreign nation. A lawsuit on her behalf was filed early Monday morning in a federal court in the Western District of Texas, alleging a violation of her First Amendment right of free speech.


    • But this year, all of that changed. On August 13, the school district once again offered to extend her contract for another year by sending her essentially the same contract and set of certifications she has received and signed at the end of each year since 2009.

      She was prepared to sign her contract renewal until she noticed one new, and extremely significant, addition: a certification she was required to sign pledging that she “does not currently boycott Israel,” that she “will not boycott Israel during the term of the contract,” and that she shall refrain from any action “that is intended to penalize, inflict economic harm on, or limit commercial relations with Israel, or with a person or entity doing business in Israeli or in an Israel-controlled territory.”

      The language of the affirmation Amawi was told she must sign reads like Orwellian — or McCarthyite — self-parody, the classic political loyalty oath that every American should instinctively shudder upon reading…

  • Arrêtez les rotatives, Walid Joumblatt a débusqué un « complot d’une envergure machiavélique » :

    #Strasbourg l’attentat terroriste vise à divertir le mouvement de révolte sociale de ses revendications légitimes et déchaîner les passions aveugles racistes pour entraîner la France,l’Europe dans une hystérie xénophobe sans précédent.quel complot d’une envergure machiavélique

    Oui, c’est le même Walid Beik auquel les journalistes français continuent à demander son avis sur plein de sujets (ça m’a toujours sidéré : si Joumblatt me conseillait un fournisseur de maté, même ça je me méfierais).

  • Cette année, la personnalité de l’année du magazine Time, ce sont « les défenseurs de la vérité » (the guardians and the war on truth). Sans surprise aucune, ni Snowden ni Assange ne sont considérés comme des défenseurs de la vérité ayant payé un prix exorbitant pour cette cause.

  • Avec une régularité d’horloge, un officiel israélien fait des menaces extrêmement violentes contre le Liban, et tout le monde s’en fout.

    Israel minister threatens Lebanon

    An senior Israeli minister and member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s security cabinet says he is confident that once the Israeli army has a pretext for a war with its neighbour to the north, it “will return Lebanon to the Stone Age”, Channel 10 News reported.

    Responding to a panelist who questioned whether the recent alleged discovery of tunnels on the Israeli side of the border with Lebanon might mean that Israeli deterrence power has decreased, Construction Minister Yoav Galant threatened to destroy Lebanon itself – not only Hezbollah.

    “I presume that when we have the reasons, then we will know what to do,” said Galant, a former top general in the Israeli army. “I propose that we trust in the IDF and in its power; we know what to do. That doesn’t mean that we want a battle or a war everyday. But if, regretfully, we get to war, we will return Lebanon to the Stone Age – no less than that.”

    Asked if he meant Lebanon, the country, or Hezbollah, Galant said: “Both of them. It is unacceptable [that] Israeli citizens, Israeli children, Israeli women are threatened in our cities, and in Lebanon, it’s business as usual. When I say to return the Stone Age, I mean what I say.”

    When the show’s host pivoted to Galant’s political patronage, the minister affirmed he was still number two on the list of the Kulanu faction of the government, but hinted that he might switch to Netanyahu’s ruling Likud party, since he shares its hawkish views on security.

    “I never hid that my opinions on politics and security are identical to those of the Likud. And by the way, I’m the not the only one in the Kulanu party who holds those views,” Galant said.

    Israeli Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz similarly threatened to send Lebanon back to “the Stone Age” in 2014 and to “the age of cavemen” in April of this year, according to Israeli reports.

  • Dans le complotisme de Laurence Marchand-Taillade qui dénonce sur CNews le rôle des « Frères musulmans » dans les événements de samedi dernier, un aspect est insuffisamment mis en avant : elle se base ouvertement sur la seule propagande officielle de la dictature égyptienne pour assoir son explication. Elle commence ainsi :

    Ce qui est inquiétant, c’est qu’on a quand même des journaux étrangers, notamment des journaux égyptiens [elle insiste par son intonation sur « égyptiens »] qui rapportent que les modes opératoires correspondent aux modes opératoires qui étaient employés en Égypte au moment des Printemps arabes. [blah blah]… issus des Frères musulmans.

    Puis :

    C’est une hypothèse qui est soulevée par des journaux tout à fait sérieux égyptiens.

    M’enfin ça devrait faire bondir. « Des » journaux égyptiens ? La dame ne sait pas que l’Égypte est une épouvantable dictature, dirigée par le maréchal Sissi, dont l’intégralité de la propagande est basée sur la dénonciation des Frères musulmans, puisqu’il est arrivé au pouvoir en renversant le Président élu Mohamed Morsi (issu des rangs des Frères) ?

    Et que, de manière très inquiétante, ce complotisme anti-Frères, seule parole autorisée dans les médias égyptiens, sert à justifier la répression des manifestations, notamment à Rabaa en août 2013, qui a vu la mort de plusieurs centaines de manifestants (au moins 800, sans doute plus de 1000).

    Sur la crédibilité (ou la gravité) d’une information qui reposerait « notamment » sur « des journaux tout à fait sérieux égyptiens », voir par exemple la loi de 2015 :

    Alors que l’Egypte détient dans ses geôles dix-huit journalistes, le chef de l’Etat a ratifié dimanche une loi plus que litigieuse.


    Ainsi, par cette nouvelle loi promulguée dimanche, les journalistes de toutes nationalités qui contrediraient les communiqués officiels s’exposeraient à de lourdes poursuites. Parmi les sanctions possibles : une amende pouvant aller de 200 000 à 500 000 livres égyptiennes (entre 23 000 et 58 000 euros) et une interdiction d’exercer la profession de journaliste durant un an maximum.

  • Asad Abukhalil : « En ce moment même, le gouvernement qui envoie régulièrement ses avions de combat survoler le Liban est en train de lancer une campagne de communication pour dénoncer quelques tunnels qui violeraient sa souveraineté. »

    Right this moment the government which sends its fighter jets regularly over Lebanon is launching a propaganda campaign that some tunnels have violated its sovereignty.

    • Du coup, dans le Monde, le prévisible article (du « correspondant » à Jérusalem) qui ne cite que des sources officielles israéliennes, et qui bascule d’un coup sur « les experts » et « la milice chiite soutenue par l’Iran ». (Je me demande pourquoi ils ne font pas directement signer leurs papiers par le porte-parole officiel de l’armée israélienne ; ça leur ferait des économies.) L’armée israélienne lance une opération pour détruire des tunnels d’attaque du Hezbollah

      Mais les experts estiment aussi que la milice chiite, soutenue par l’Iran, s’est renforcée comme jamais. Elle dispose d’environ 120 000 roquettes et missiles. Le nombre est impressionnant, mais la précision et la portée des armes les plus avancées le sont encore davantage. Le Hezbollah est capable de déclencher des centaines de tirs en une journée vers les grandes villes israéliennes, en utilisant des systèmes de guidage sophistiqués.

    • Noter au passage l’usage, sans guillemets dans le Monde, de l’expression « tunnels d’attaque ». De la pure bidasse-speak israélienne (compagne de communication, il y a quelques années, sur le même sujet, contre le Hamas et les tunnels de ravitaillement de Gaza).

      Sinon, pour trouver des « tunnels d’attaque », quelques mentions dans des textes historiques sur 14-18. Mais depuis, apparemment, ça n’apparaît jamais en dehors de textes de la propagande israélienne. (Ou, donc, dans le Monde et sans guillemets.)

    • Israël accuse le Hezbollah d’avoir creusé des tunnels pour l’attaquer
      Par Reuters le 04.12.2018 à 09h15

      JERUSALEM (Reuters) - L’armée israélienne a annoncé mardi avoir débuté une opération visant à « exposer et entraver » des tunnels transfrontaliers entre le Liban et Israël creusés selon elle par le mouvement chiite libanais du Hezbollah pour attaquer l’Etat hébreu.

      Israël est au courant de l’existence d’un certain nombre de tunnels traversant la frontière nord de l’Etat hébreu depuis le Liban, a déclaré un porte-parole de l’armée israélienne, le colonel Jonathan Conricus, précisant que Tsahal allait opérer seulement sur le territoire israélien.

      Dans un communiqué, l’armée israélienne a déclaré avoir « renforcé sa présence » dans le nord d’Israël et être « préparée à divers scénarios ».

      Ces « tunnels d’attaque » ont été découverts par les forces de sécurité israéliennes « avant de devenir opérationnels et de menacer la sécurité des civils israéliens », écrit Tsahal. Ils constituent « une flagrante et grave violation à la souveraineté d’Israël », est-il ajouté dans le communiqué.

      Certaines zones situées à proximité de la frontière israélo-libanaise ont été fermées.

      Israël considère le Hezbollah, auquel il a livré plusieurs guerres dont la dernière en 2006, comme la menace la plus sérieuse à sa frontière.

      (Ari Rabinovitch ; Jean Terzian pour le service français)