cue the lightning bolts

the only question that matters: is it true?

Iran has signed the NPT. As a signatory to the NPT, Iran may rightfully, legally, use nuclear technology for peaceful energy purposes. Iran has submitted to and passed repeated IAEA inspections. The US intelligence community (NIE) does not consider Iran a nuclear threat. Israel refuses to sign the NPT. Israel has an estimated several hundred undeclared nuclear weapons. Russia and China have warned that an attack on Iran will have global consequences. That's the situation in a nutshell. Where to next, people? Where to?

Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth? - Galatians 4:16

11.27.2009

the real terrorists

1. Israeli spies 'infiltrate' Johannesburg airport

By Jonathan Cook - NAZARETH, Israel

South Africa deported an Israeli airline official last week following allegations that Israel’s secret police, the Shin Bet, had infiltrated Johannesburg international airport in an effort to gather information on South African citizens, particularly black and Muslim travellers.

...The programme also featured testimony from Jonathan Garb, a former El Al guard, who claimed that the airline company had been a front for the Shin Bet in South Africa for many years.

Of the footage of the undercover reporter’s questioning, he commented: “Here is a secret service operating above the law in South Africa. We pull the wool over everyone’s eyes. We do exactly what we want. The local authorities do not know what we are doing.”

The Israeli foreign ministry is reported to have sent a team to South Africa to try to defuse the diplomatic crisis after the government in Johannesburg threatened to deport all of El Al’s security staff.

Mr Garb’s accusations have been supported by an investigation by the regulator for South Africa’s private security industries.

They have also been confirmed by human rights groups in Israel, which report that Israeli security staff are carrying out racial profiling at many airports around the world, apparently out of sight of local authorities.

...Mr Garb commented on the show: “What we are trained is to look for the immediate threat – the Muslim guy. You can think he is a suicide bomber, he is collecting information. The crazy thing is that we are profiling people racially, ethnically and even on religious grounds … This is what we do.”

...Suspect individuals, the former workers say, are held in an annex room, where they are interrogated, often on matters unrelated to airport security, and can be subjected to strip searches while their luggage is taken apart. Clandestine searches of their belongings and laptops are also carried out to identify useful documents and information.

All of this is done in violation of South African law, which authorises only the police, armed forces or personnel appointed by the transport minister to carry out searches.

The former staff also accuse El Al of smuggling weapons – licensed to the local Israeli embassy – into the airport for use by the secret agents.

...A South African Jew, he said he was recruited 19 years ago by the Shin Bet. “We were trained at a secret camp [in Israel] where they train Israeli special forces and they train you how to use handguns, submachine guns and in unarmed combat.”

Mr Garb claimed to have profiled 40,000 people for Israel over the past 20 years, including recently Virginia Tilley, a Middle East expert who is the chief researcher at South Africa’s Human Sciences Research Council. The think tank recently published a report accusing Israel of apartheid and colonialism in the Palestinian territories.

“The decision was she should be checked in the harshest way because of her connections,” Mr Garb said.

Ms Tilley confirmed that she had been detained at the airport by El Al staff and separated from her luggage. Mr Garb said that during this period an agent “photo-copied all [her] documentation and then he forwarded it on to Israel” – Mr Garb believes for use by the Shin Bet.

Israeli officials have refused to comment on the allegations. A letter produced by Mr Garb – signed by Roz Bukris, El Al’s general manager in South Africa – suggests that he was employed by the Shin Bet rather than the airline. Ms Bukris, according to the programme, refused to confirm or deny the letter’s validity.

The Israeli Embassy in South Africa declined to discuss evidence that it, rather than El Al, had licensed guns issued to the airline’s security managers. Questioned last week by Ynet, Israel’s largest news website, about the deportation of the airline official, Yossi Levy, an Israeli foreign ministry spokesman said he could not “comment on security matters”.

read more @ middle east online


2. commander accuses western coalition of collusion with Somali pirates

"Why don't the coalition forces, which enjoy super hi-tech equipment, annihilate the buccaneers of the region forever and why do they provide the ground for the continuation of their activities through their suspicious supports?" Commander of Iran's first Naval Zone Fariborz Qaderpanah asked, speaking in a detailed interview with FNA on Tuesday.

Noting that many analysts believe that there are secret hands at work which are disturbing security in the Gulf of Aden, Qaderpanah lamented that certain countries which are the root cause of insecurity in the region make suspicious statements to justify their presence.

Elsewhere, he further stated that pirates' experience and practice as well as the hi-tech weaponry supplied by the western states to the pirates have rendered them so skillful that they can now grab a vessel at the earliest.

read more @ fars



3. 'they treated us like dogs' - freed crew on Somali pirates

MOGADISHU – "Nightmarish" is the way the crew of the Al-Meezan cargo vessel recount their time in captivity at the hands of Somali pirates.

...

"On November 3, when we were about 150 nautical miles from the Somali coast, we were chased by three small boats with very powerful engines. It's all in the logbook," the old man said, pointing to a black book on the table.

"We'd hardly had time to raise the alarm when the attackers were already on board. They're very intelligent. They immediately took over the controls, switched off all the electronic equipment and headed for Garacad" in north eastern Somalia where the ship anchored in the shelter of a small island, he said.

...Built in 1979, the 2,000-ton 50-meter long Al-Meezan is managed from Dubai by Biyat International.

The Al-Meezan 7906710 is owned by a company called Shahmir Maritime based in the Carribean Grenadine Islands and described by people who know it as a front company.

Chartered by Somali businessmen, the ship mostly plies between the Gulf States and Somalia. When it was captured for the first time around the pirates were already claiming it had arms on board.


read more @ inquirer.net


4. Lebanon: terror groups get local funding

Internal Security Forces chief Maj. Gen. Ashraf Rifi has said al-Qaida network does not constitute a real threat to Lebanon adding that local criminal or Gulf sources are funding terrorist groups in the country.

Al-Qaida "hasn't been entrenched in Lebanon. It seems that al-Qaida does not consider our land a land of Jihad," Rifi told France's Defense magazine.

"We could sometimes find in Lebanon groupings that adopt al-Qaida's ideas but without any ties with it," the ISF chief said, adding the reason behind it was the openness of Sunni Lebanese on the west, a move that prevents planting the terror network's ideology in Lebanon.

About the financial support of terrorist groups in Lebanon, Rifi told the magazine that the funding was from "local criminal or Gulf sources."

"Some groups fund themselves through criminal activities such as bank robberies and human trafficking," he said. "However, as a big number of reports indicate, other groups get funding from Arab Gulf countries."

"When I say the Gulf I don't necessarily mean the governments. I mean private parties that sponsor their networks," The ISF chief said.



source: naharnet news desk


5. police raid homes of alleged Chinese spies

Munich investigators on Tuesday searched the apartments of four alleged Chinese agents on suspicion they have been spying on the city's Uighur community, news magazine Der Spiegel reported.

Authorities told the magazine that the Chinese general consulate has been running a spy network from the Bavarian capital, where several hundred Muslim Uighurs form one of the largest communities outside of China.

The World Uighur Congress is also located in the city, and many members are politically active in protesting what they see as China's oppression of the ethnic group. Meanwhile China has in the past accused Uighur exile groups of supporting terrorism.

“According to findings by the Federal Public Prosecutor’s office, the Chinese government has therefore won a range of informants who report on the private lives of the Munich Uighur community for Beijing,” the magazine's website said.

Investigators have observed Chinese diplomats meeting with the informants, but only the alleged spies are under investigation due to matters of diplomatic immunity.

The efforts by German authorities are the result of new policies created last year to curtail possible Chinese espionage, though this is the first time they have taken such drastic steps, the magazine said.

Two years ago Chinese diplomat Ji Wumin left Germany after he was discovered meeting with an informant about Uighur issues. But he departed of his own accord without being expelled. China is said to be interested in returning Ji to his former post, but this is now unlikely after the latest raids, which are related to his successor, the magazine said.

source: the local

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