Censorship democratic

Censorship democratic

Whenever any “ethics” pro-American politician or political scientist affiliations interesting laments death of a free press in Romania and loudly express their hope that the Romanian media has ever come as free as that of Europe or the U.S., a informed observer can only note that the speaker is an ordinary manipulator, or at best, a “useful idiot”. A recent media scandal gives us the perfect opportunity to show the real degree of freedom of the press in the citadel of Democracy. Journalists from the Wall Street Journal, a publication with an excellent reputation, and took an interview from Finnish politician Timo Soini, leader of the True Finns party, who won 19% of the vote in recent parliamentary elections. Timo Soini is part of a new generation of European politicians who combines a pragmatic ideas to maintain a welfare state with an anti-globalist agenda and radical conservative about fiscal discipline and limit the financial sector influence over political decisions. The party led by Soini has become the main opposition party in Finland and in one of the scenarios had the opportunity to block the participation of Finland to finance “economic rescue package” for European banks. European financial mechanisms require that any such package to be approved by consensus, which meant that Finland’s opposition had a chance to derail possible efforts to keep the bureaucrats in Brussels the European financial sector afloat. Interview given by Timo Soini was posted on the Wall Street Journal website attracted the attention of both community and economic journalists and international investment community. It seems that the interview was so tough that someone has suggested to the Wall Street Journal editors, although it is possible that you have asked yourself, the text would be “embellished” and in the print edition of the newspaper interview appeared a form of missing a series of particularly interesting passages. Subsequently, the text on the site Wall Street Journal was “embellished” to correspond to that of the print edition. To inform our readers, we consider it appropriate to reproduce fragments were removed from corporate censorship of publications in prestigious West.

“The financial rescue packages are extremely bad for Europe, bad for Finland and bad for the countries who were forced to accept …
The official version is that Greece, Ireland and Portugal have been hit by a liquidity crisis and need a temporary infusion of capital, then things will return to normal. But this official version is a lie, a lie which means that ordinary Europeans are idiots. Europeans deserve more from political leaders. In a market economy, bad decisions are penalized, but not in this case. When the inevitable collapse of the European countries overly indebted to materialize, established a secret pact … it was decided that the losses of private banks to be covered by taxpayers’ money through state loans, state guarantees and the European Facility Construction opaque and Financial Stability .. . Some politicians have understood this, others have just panicked and did what they were told to do …

Gangrene crisis has not been cleaned and is expanding … There are major banks in Spain that could actually be some “living dead”, as happened in Ireland. Time is running out and the problem will not resolve itself …

Some defend the current mechanisms by which the Member save banks, citing the fact that their use requires unanimity among the European countries, but the situation surrounding the crisis in Portugal show that the Brussels elite will seek to achieve unanimity by pressure when consensus can not be obtained by persuasion. Abolition of the principle of unanimity is only a matter of time. After abolition, we have a full fiscal union, union to be a puppet in the hand of corporatism counterproductive in Brussels …

We will do what we promised voters, even though it will cost us and we will not want the dinner guests in Brussels, will be treated negatively by the media or we run out of ministerial portfolios. “

Finnish opposition leader’s courage is admirable and gives rise to a certain envy of the Finnish people have such a representative in the political sphere, and the situation in which the famous Wall Street Journal Wall Street turns to spark can only prove the vulnerability of a system that once seemed invincible.

US ‘seizing our freedom,’ says Georgia’s opposition

TBILISI
This file photo shows Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili (C) standing with U.S. Senators Harry Reid (L) and John McCain at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on March 16. AP photo.
This file photo shows Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili (C) standing with U.S. Senators Harry Reid (L) and John McCain at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on March 16. AP photo.

An opposition party in Georgia has blasted the United States for propping up Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili’s regime, reiterating its call for a protest outside the U.S. Embassy in Tbilisi on Friday.

“We believe that Russia has seized our territories, but by this support [to Saakashvili], the U.S. administration is seizing our freedom, our sovereign right of free choice in our internal political affairs,” Erosi Kitsmarishvili, one of the founders of the opposition Georgian Party was quoted as saying by online news outlet Civil Georgia on Wednesday.

His comments echoed earlier remarks made by party co-leader and ex-Defense Minister Irakli Okruashvili.

Kitsmarishvili was speaking at a news conference convened after some of the other opposition parties slammed the Georgian Party for the planned rally and for Okruashvili’s remarks, in which he described the U.S. Embassy as a “torrent, poisoning Georgian society.”

“This statement is directed not against the Georgian authorities, but against Georgia as a whole,” said Levan Berdzenishvili of the Republican Party.

Georgian member of parliament Giorgi Targamadze, the leader of the Christian-Democratic Movement, or CDM, slammed Okruashvili’s remarks as unacceptable and said such a stance only contributed to strengthening the authorities’ position and would help create a situation from which Russia might benefit.

Nino Burjanadze, an ex-parliamentary speaker, the leader of the Democratic Movement-United Georgia party and a longtime critic of the Georgian Party, also said such statements only benefit the authorities.

“This statement is part of Saakashvili’s plan,” she said.

Burjanadze plans to launch street protests May 21 to force the president’s resignation.

“I’ve listened to various opposition parties’ statements about the remarks made by Irakli Okruashvili,” Kitsmarishvili said. “If someone wants to know what the people think, let them go and meet people… and ask them what they think about the U.S. administration’s support of the Saakashvili regime.”

“We are a sovereign state and we demand that not a single country should be interfering in our internal political affairs,” he said.

Kitsmarishvili also said that Georgian authorities were not following their democratic commitments as laid out in the U.S.-Georgia Strategic Charter, a document signed in January 2009 that vows mutual protection as well as recognizing “that democracy is the chief basis for political legitimacy.” Despite not upholding this democratic principle, the U.S. still supports the current regime, Kitsmarishvili said.

“Despite the terror against business and people, the U.S. administration still continues its financial support for the Saakashvili regime,” he said. “For that reason we think that expressing protest [outside the U.S. Embassy] will be important May 16.”

Protest rallies outside the U.S. Embassy are rare in Georgia, but there have been several occasions in past few years when the opposition held such rallies to protest against what they called the “U.S. support of the Saakashvili regime.” One such rally was held by the “Party of People” in January 2008, after the snap presidential elections, and another one was held by a group of opposition parties ahead of a meeting between President Saakashvili and then-U.S. President George W. Bush in March 2008.

After the 2008 presidential elections many opposition politicians voiced their criticism of the Bush administration for what they called “helping Saakashvili to legitimize fraudulent elections.” Mathew Bryza, who at the time was the U.S. Department of State’s point man for the Caucasus working for in the department’s Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs and is now the U.S. ambassador to Azerbaijan, was a frequent target of criticism.

The opposition’s rhetoric, however, has changed since then with many opposition politicians saying President Barack Obama’s administration is more inclined toward pressing the Georgian authorities on democratic reforms. Many opposition politicians have praised the U.S. ambassador to Georgia, John Bass, who has been serving in Tbilisi since October 2009, for what they call “adequately assessing” Georgia’s problems with democratic reforms.

ISI Gen. Pasha “Takes a Bullet for His Boss,” Accepts Guilt for Abbottabad

Pakistan’s parliament urges revision of relations

DPA

Supporters of a Pakistani religious group hold an anti-U.S. rally in Abbottabad. Pakistan is facing pressure from inside the country and abroad to explain why Pakistani intelligence didn't know that bin Laden was hiding in their country and whether some Pakistani officials knew and protected him. Photo: AP
APSupporters of a Pakistani religious group hold an anti-U.S. rally in Abbottabad. Pakistan is facing pressure from inside the country and abroad to explain why Pakistani intelligence didn’t know that bin Laden was hiding in their country and whether some Pakistani officials knew and protected him. Photo: AP

Pakistan has been an important but uneasy partner of the U.S. in the fight against terrorism, and has faced growing anti-Western sentiment at home.

Pakistan’s parliament early Saturday condemned the breach of sovereignty by the United States in its raid on terrorist leader Osama bin Laden earlier this month, reports said.

The lawmakers also recommended that an independent commission investigate the failures of Pakistan’s own security forces in the May 2 incident.

In a 10-hour session which started Friday and lasted until the early hours, both houses unanimously adopted a resolution condemning the US operation that killed bin Laden in a town 60 kilometres north of Islamabad.

The resolution, debated behind closed doors, also recommended revisiting the country’s military cooperation with the U.S., the Nation newspaper’s website reported.

Pakistan has been an important but uneasy partner of the U.S. in the fight against terrorism, and has faced growing anti-Western sentiment at home.

Strikes by U.S. unmanned aircraft against suspected targets in Pakistan have provoked a strong public reaction.

Saturday’s resolution called for the drone attacks to stop, or Pakistan would cease to allow supplies to NATO troops in Afghanistan to transit through the country.

The majority of supplies to the international troops in land-locked Afghanistan are unloaded at Pakistani ports before being shipped over land.

The head of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency told the parliamentarians Friday that his department bore responsibility for the failure to detect either bin Laden or the U.S. mission against him.

But the military was not to blame, Lieutenant General Ahmed Shujaa Pasha said. The technology available was not state of the art, and communication with the CIA was poor, he was quoted as saying by the Dawn newspaper online.

Iran Threatens To Open the Drug Flood-Gates

Iran warns West it could allow transit of drugs


Iran warns West it could allow transit of drugs
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, center, kisses the Quran, Muslims’ holy book, during a departure ceremony for him before leaving for Turkey to attend an international conference, at Mehrabad airport in TehranAP

Associated Press

Iran threatened Saturday to allow the transit of illegal drugs through its territory to Europe if the West continues to criticize the Islamic nation for its practice of executing drug traffickers.

Mohammad Javad Larijani, the head of Iran’s High Council for Human Rights, said Iran was sacrificing blood in fighting drug trafficking and suggested it is unfair that it is then condemned by the West for executing smugglers.

“Westerners have to either be Iran’s partner in the fight against drug traffickers or we must think otherwise and, for instance, allow the transit” of drugs across Iranian territory, Larijani said in a comment posted on the judiciary’s website Saturday.

He said such a move would reduce the number of overall executions in Iran by 74 percent, “but the way will be paved for the smuggling of narcotics to Europe.”

U.N. officials have in the past warned that a “heroin tsunami” could hit Europe if the drug interdiction by Iran is weakened.

Iran says it has lost more than 3,700 troops in the fight against drug traffickers and 11,000 more have been injured to date since 1979, when the Islamic Revolution brought hard-line clerics to power.

“Unfortunately, Western countries not only provide no assistance to Iran in the fight against drug trafficking, they condemn us every year for punishing drug smugglers,” Larijani said.

Iran has also called on Europe to offer financial support to its fight against trafficking.

Iran lies a major drug route between Afghanistan — which accounts for more than 90 percent of the world’s illicit opium and heroin production — and Europe.

Iranian authorities have taken several steps to stop trafficking, including the building of dikes and trenches along large portions of its roughly 560-mile (900-kilometer) border with Afghanistan. Officials also seize more than three tons of narcotics each day, according to official statistics.

Radar deployment is an element of a US military presence in Georgia

Radar deployment is an element of a US military presence in Georgia

In recent times, two major events have shaken Georgian military and political life: the visit of US senators concerning anti-missile defense system construction and the decision of President Saakashvili to renounce the Russian-Georgian accord on military cargo transit to Armenia. Irakliy Aladashvili, chief editor of the independent analytical ‘Arsenali’ magazine, shared his opinion on the issue with our VK correspondent.

- US senators headed by republican John Cale visitid Georgia. These senators recently petitioned the US president on missile defense system radar deployment in Georgia. What’s the impact of this visit?

- The subject of this discussion is radar, not missiles. And radar should be located as close as possible to the supposed launch site. We all know that right now this supposed site is in Iran.

There were several projects: President Bush wanted to deploy the counter-missiles in Poland and the radar in the Czech Republic. Then, perhaps with some pressure from Russia, the radar project was moved to Turkey. However, Turkey posed a grave condition: it didn’t want any information obtained by the radar to be handed over to Israel. That’s quite illogical, as one of the facility’s obvious tasks is to gather information on Iran’s activities in order to, among other things, protect Israel from its possible attacks. I don’t believe that the US will agree to such a condition. It was after this statement from Ankara that the senators’ proposal about Georgia was made.

It’s hard to tell whether it’s realistic in the present conditions. The senators’ visit and their proposal are quite important, but we shouldn’t overestimate these events. Georgian deputies, especially members of the opposition, also travel a lot and propose many projects… And the senators who came to Georgia are Republicans, i. e. Obama’s opposition. To tell you the truth I don’t believe that the project will come true under the current US administration, not with such a negative attitude from Moscow.

- And what about technical aspects of the project?

- Technically speaking it’s wise to deploy this radar on Georgian soil. It could cover the whole of Iran and other countries of the region up to India.

- Why does the US need to construct a new radar if there’s the large Qabala Radiolocation Station covering the Southern sector of the region? And Moscow and Baku showed that they are ready to consider this possibility.

- The Qabala Radar is a fixed facility. It can scan only in one direction. Americans want to have mobile radars. And in addition, this station was built in the 1980s, so now it’s not so up-to-date. It was constructed to ‘watch’ not Iran, but possible US activities in the Indian Ocean.

But all these deliberations are purely theoretical – I don’t believe that Obama’s going to spoil his relations with Russia over this radar problem.

- So hypothetically speaking, how would the radar benefit Georgia?

- The major part of Georgian territory would remain unprotected by radar, despite all its mobility. And if it is located, Russia is able to target all Georgian lands from South Ossetia or the North Caucasus.

However, if the US deploys its radar here, it will be obliged to protect it, thus protecting Georgian territories as well…So you see that deployment of the radar would become an element of a US military presence in Georgia, as they’ll have to sent troops to protect it.

- The Georgian Parliament renounced the Russian-Georgian accord of 2006 on Russian military cargo transit to Armenia. So what exactly was this accord about?

- It stipulated the possibility of access for Russian military transport to the Russian base in Armenia via Georgian territory by land and by air. Russia was obliged to warn the Georgian side of all cargo characteristics and transportation means three months before any transit. It also guaranteed that the cargo won’t end up in any ‘hot’ zone.

- And what means is Russia left with to supply its base in Armenia? The accord de facto hasn’t been functioning since the events of 2008…

- A route via Iran is possible. And the air corridor still remains – Georgia is not capable of fully controlling its airspace and is not prepared to shoot trespassers down.

Interview by Georgy Kalatozishvili, exclusively to VK

Quetta nervous about U.S. hunt for Taliban chief Omar

Pakistan city nervous about U.S. hunt for Taliban chief Omar

REUTERS

By Faisal Aziz

QUETTA, Pakistan (Reuters) – U.S. forces tracked down and killed their most wanted enemy Osama bin Laden after a 10-year manhunt ended in a quiet Pakistani town. Now who is next?

After killing the al Qaeda leader in a May 2 raid, the United States has made clear it will go after Islamist militants in Pakistan if it finds them, and at the top of any list would be Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar.

For years, U.S. officials have said the one-eyed Omar is based is in the southwestern Pakistani city of Quetta, not far from the Afghan border, where he heads a Taliban leadership council, or shura.

Pakistan rejects assertions that Omar is in Pakistan, or even that the so-called Quetta shura exists. But such denials ring hollow after the al Qaeda leader was found in the country after years of similar protestations.

People in Quetta are nervous and some are scornful of both sides in the fight against Islamist militancy.

“I have no sympathy at all for Mullah Omar or the Taliban but I have none for the Americans either,” said Zulfiqar Tareen, a pharmaceutical company representative taking orders from shopkeepers in one of Quetta’s main markets.

“Yes, the Taliban are terrorists but so is America.”

For the United States, desperate to find some way to end the nearly decade old Afghan war, catching or killing Omar could prove decisive.

“If they really want to stabilise Afghanistan and Pakistan they should go after Mullah Omar. He is the key,” said an Arab diplomat in Pakistan. “It would not surprise me if he is the next target.”

Quetta has a population of about 2.5 million, including many Afghans, and sprawls across a flat valley surrounded by rocky mountains.

The city has long been a hub for Afghan refugees and Taliban sympathisers, about 100 km (60 miles) over a mountain pass to the border and Afghanistan’s violence-plagued Kandahar province.

Afghan officials say Quetta is a virtual rear base for the Taliban where fighters can rest and get medical care and where their leaders plot. Heavily bearded and turbaned Pashtun men eye strangers with suspicion in some neighbourhoods.

Security in the capital of gas-rich Baluchistan province is heavy with numerous checkpoints on roads while guards with rifles slung over their shoulders pace the pavements outside buildings.

But trouble in Quetta comes more from autonomy-seeking separatist rebels than from Islamists like the Taliban.

City hotel worker Nasir Khan said Pakistan should be left out of the U.S. war against the Afghan Taliban.

“Mullah Omar has noting to do with Pakistan, he’s just fighting the Americans in Afghanistan, his country … He’s not our enemy so we shouldn’t get involved,” Khan said.

Despite its reputation as a Taliban hub, there’s no obvious militant hold on the city and women make up many of the shoppers in markets where shops sell Indian movies and pop songs.

“TRICKY”

Whether or not the shadowy Taliban supremo is in Quetta, security officials are nervous.

“It’s a very tricky situation,” said a senior intelligence official who declined to be identified. “If you ask us if Mullah Omar is in Quetta, the answer is ‘no’, we have no such information and we are confident about it.”

Nevertheless, he said his men had stepped up efforts to track Omar although the had no new leads.

“We’ll definitely get him if we know where he is. It’s very important for us to get him before the United States does. We don’t want another Abbottabad-like situation,” he said.

The discovery and killing of bin Laden in the town of Abbottabad, 50 km (30 miles) north of the capital, Islamabad, was a huge embarrassment for Pakistan.

The government and military are facing U.S. suspicion that authorities knew where bin Laden was hiding as well as criticism at home for what Pakistanis sees as a violation of their sovereignty by the helicopter-borne U.S. raiders.

There have been no confirmed sightings of Omar since the Taliban government he headed was swept from power by U.S. air strikes and attacks by U.S.-led Afghan fighters weeks after the September 11 attacks on the United States by his ally, bin Laden.

Afghanistan says he is not there but in Pakistan and many people in Pakistan suspect that is right. There has been talk that Omar, fearing strikes by U.S. drone aircraft in Quetta, had gone to ground in the port city of Karachi.

Pakistan, though officially denying support for the Afghan Taliban, has long seen the ethnic-Pashtun dominated Islamists as natural allies in Afghanistan, where most other ethnic and political factions are close to Pakistan’s old rival, India.

With Afghanistan entering what could be an end-game as U.S. prepare to begin a withdrawal, Pakistan would likely want to protect its cards, and Omar would be the biggest.

(Additional reporting by Gul Yousufzai; Editing by Robert Birsel and Miral Fahmy)

Libyan Rebels Leave White House Empty-Handed?

[Obama refused to follow British example (SEE:  Ties with Libya rebels strengthened ).]

Libya: White House dashes rebel hopes of recognition

Mahmoud Jibril speaks in Washington DC (12 May 2011) Mahmoud Jibril says recognition would improve the council’s morale and resources

The US has stopped short of recognising Libya’s National Transitional Council as the country’s legitimate government.

The statement comes after the first visit to the White House by a senior member of the rebel council, which is pushing for international support.

Earlier, Col Muammar Gaddafi taunted Nato troops in an audio message on state TV, saying he was in a place where they “cannot reach” him.

State media says 11 Muslim clerics have been killed in a Nato air strike.

Mahmoud Jibril, deputy leader of the Benghazi-based National Transitional Council (NTC), met officials at the White House on Friday, including National Security Adviser Tom Donilon.

‘You can’t kill me’

In a statement, the White House said Mr Donilon had told Mr Jibril that the US viewed the council as “a legitimate and credible interlocutor of the Libyan people”.

The US and Britain have not recognised the NTC as the true government of Libya – in contrast to France, Italy and Qatar.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said on Thursday that such a step would be “premature”.

Col Muammar Gaddafi (8 March 2011) A Libyan government spokesman said Col Gaddafi was in very good health and high spirits

The US has said it is up to the Libyans to decide their government, not foreign powers.

There was some encouragement on Friday, however, for rebel hopes of accessing seized Libyan regime assets.

Mr Carney said the US was working with Congress to unblock some of the more than $30bn (£18.5bn) in frozen funds, so it could be used to aid the rebels.

Six large blasts – believed to have been Nato air strikes – were heard in the Libyan capital Tripoli late on Friday and early on Saturday morning.

They followed Libyan state TV’s broadcast of an audio message by Col Gaddafi, pouring scorn on the alliance.

The Libyan leader thanked those outside Libya who had “expressed deep and strong concern, enthusiasm and love for me by carrying out all these contacts to enquire about my safety after hearing about the crusader, cowardly and treacherous missile attack”.

“I say to the crusader cowards that I live in a place that you cannot reach and kill me in it because I live in the hearts of the millions,” he added.

“Immortality is for the martyrs, and death, infamy and disgrace are for the treacherous agents and their cowardly masters.”

Italy’s foreign minister said earlier on Friday that Col Gaddafi had probably been wounded in Thursday’s air strike on his Bab al-Aziziya compound and had fled Tripoli.

Earlier on Friday, state TV reported a Nato strike hit a boarding house in the eastern city of Brega, killing 11 imams and wounding 45 people.

A government spokesman said the victims were part of a larger group who had travelled to the government-held town from across Libya seeking peace talks in rebel-held Benghazi.

But rebel officials in Benghazi insisted there were no civilians at all in Brega, while a Nato spokesman said he did not know anything about an attack in Brega.