The Master and Margarita
CHISINAU, Moldova (AP) — In the backwaters of Eastern Europe, authorities working with the FBI have interrupted four attempts in the past five years by gangs with suspected Russian connections that sought to sell radioactive material to Middle Eastern extremists, The Associated Press has learned.
The latest known case came in February this year, when a smuggler offered a huge cache of deadly cesium — enough to contaminate several city blocks — and specifically sought a buyer from the Islamic State group. Criminal organizations, some with ties to the Russian KGB's successor agency, are driving a thriving black market in nuclear materials in the tiny and impoverished country of Moldova, investigators say.
The successful busts, however, were undercut by striking shortcomings: Kingpins got away, and those arrested evaded long prison sentences, sometimes quickly returning to nuclear smuggling, AP found.
Moldovan police and judicial authorities shared investigative case files with AP in an effort to spotlight how dangerous the nuclear black market has become. They say the breakdown in cooperation between Russia and the West means that it has become much harder to know whether smugglers are finding ways to move parts of Russia's vast store of radioactive materials — an unknown quantity of which has leached into the black market.
"We can expect more of these cases," said Constantin Malic, a Moldovan police officer who investigated all four cases. "As long as the smugglers think they can make big money without getting caught, they will keep doing it."
In wiretaps, videotaped arrests, photographs of bomb-grade material, documents and interviews, AP found a troubling vulnerability in the anti-smuggling strategy. From the first known Moldovan case in 2010 to the most recent one in February, a pattern has emerged: Authorities pounce on suspects in the early stages of a deal, giving the ringleaders a chance to escape with their nuclear contraband — an indication that the threat from the nuclear black market in the Balkans is far from under control.
Moldovan investigators can't be sure that the suspects who fled didn't hold on to the bulk of the nuclear materials. Nor do they know whether the groups, which are pursuing buyers who are enemies of the West, may have succeeded in selling deadly nuclear material to terrorists at a time when the Islamic State has made clear its ambition to use weapons of mass destruction.
U.S. officials said Russia’s targeting of its allies on the ground was a direct challenge to Mr. Obama's Syria policy. Underlining the distrust, the Pentagon decided against sharing any information with Moscow about the areas where U.S. allies were located because it suspected Russia would use that information to target them more directly or provide the information to President Bashar al-Assad's regime.
"On day one, you can say it was a one-time mistake," a senior U.S. official said of Russia’s strike on one of the allied rebel group’s headquarters. "But on day three and day four, there's no question it's intentional. They know what they’re hitting."And as for OPEC:
Three facts motivate Putin.
First, two regions utterly dominate world oil markets. The Middle East and Russia together ship 60 percent of all oil traded (45 and 15 percent, respectively). Meanwhile, American firms are by law prohibited from engaging in this vital global marketplace; more on this shortly.
Second, oil matters. It provides 97 percent of the global fuel needs for all the engines that transport everything on land, sea and air. No viable substitutes exist at any price for liquid hydrocarbons at the scale society needs. And the world will consume more oil, not less, as far into the future as it matters for sensible policymaking.
Finally, price matters. Here the U.S. has upset the apple cart. Entrepreneurs using new technologies have unlocked a shocking increase in oil supply. U.S. shale fields have recorded the fastest increase in oil production in history. As a result, crude prices have collapsed from north of $100 to south of $50 a barrel.
The emerging consensus? Cheaper oil is the new normal.
How does Syria matter? While it's no oil-producing powerhouse by OPEC standards, even Syria's paltry production accounted for 25 percent of that nation's economy (although ISIS now controls most of Syria's oil fields). But Syria is ideal transit territory for pipelines to European markets for oil or gas originating in Iraq and Iran.
More important, given the build-up of Russian military men and materiel in Syria, is geography. Damascus is closer to Baghdad than Washington is to Boston, and not much further away from Riyadh than New York is from Chicago. Russia's military is now no longer deployed mainly on its Baltic borders but is in the world's premier petroleum neighborhood. Russia is not an OPEC member and has often claimed no desire to join. But they may have just joined by default.
On September 12th, 2015, his National Reform page shared a photo that featured the smoking World Trade Center towers above text in Arabic describing the events of September 11th as “an American media creation” and calls them, “terrorism American style.”
It also blames the U.S. for the events of the Arab Spring, calling it a U.S. plan to “foment reprehensible chaos.” The text describes the attack on 9/11 as a “miracle” for the United States, because it provided justification for an attack, “first an Islamic government, while the second was a mighty Arab state in the Middle East.”
The reference is clearly to the U.S. attack on Afghanistan (under the Taliban) and Iraq. While the text identified the author as one Asad al-Barari, it’s not immediately clearly why Mohammed Elhassan and his National Reform Party chose to share this image and the post on September 12th, but the posting contains no text attempting to rebut or criticize the post for its statements about America.*** I will no longer post links to sites that are so burdened with ads that they slow down my computer. If you want to read the rest of the article, copy and paste part of the story and Google it yourself.
The Islamic State has a plan to conquer Rome. Yes, it might sound crazy, but ISIS believes the conquest of Rome is central to its mission.
They believe it is necessary to fulfill what Islam teaches was the prophecy of Muhammed and to prepare the return of the Muslim messiah: the Mahdi.
“ISIS thinks that Rome is one of its primary goals and is in its timetable,” Robert Spencer, author of The Complete Infidel’s Guide to ISIS, said.
“It has a timetable where in the 10 years, by the year 2025, it hopes to bring about Armageddon, the final struggle between good and evil or between the Muslims and the non-Muslims,” he explained.
“And that one of the chief stepping stones to that Armageddon battle is the conquest of Rome, which they think they’re going to be able to do with the next five years, by 2020.”
Two Cities, One Mission Muslim scholars say Muhammed prophesied that the two great Roman cities would be conquered: Constantinople and Rome.
Constantinople is now Istanbul, a Muslim city.
Rome remains to be conquered.
"...Harper-Mercer, who died during a shootout with police, was armed with handguns and a rifle, some of which were military grade. The weapons had been purchased legally over the past three years, some by him, others by relatives, ..."
"...An aunt of an Army veteran hit by several bullets said he tried to stop the gunman from entering the classroom. Wanda Mintz said her 30-year-old nephew, Chris Mintz, a student at the college, fell to the floor and asked the shooter to stop. But, she said, he shot Mintz again and went inside."
"...The Army said Harper-Mercer flunked out of basic training in 2008. Army spokesman Lt. Col. Ben Garrett said Harper-Mercer was in the military for a little over a month at Ft. Jackson, South Carolina, but was discharged for failing to meet the minimum standards."It's interesting to note that despite media reports that Harper-Mercer was killed in a shootout with Police, it is simply not true:
Saturday night, a Palestinian terrorist joined the latest murder spree against Jews in Israel by stabbing to death two Israelis to death, stabbing and wounding one of the men’s wife, then shooting and wounding the couple’s two-year-old daughter in Jerusalem. The Israeli police shot and killed the murderer.
The same night, a Palestinian stabbed an Israeli teen in Jerusalem as well. Israeli police shot and killed that would-be murderer, too. Naturally, the Palestinian Authority came out and condemned the Israeli police, labeling the terrorists “young men.”
PA spokesman Ihab Bseiso explained, “The only solution is the end of the Israeli occupation of our occupied Palestinian land and the establishment of our independent state on the 1967 borders with Jerusalem as its capital.”
The incident coordinated beautifully with other Palestinian rock-throwing attacks throughout Jerusalem, and followed Palestinian Authority dictator Mahmoud Abbas’ announcement last week that he no longer felt bound to any agreement signed with the Israelis. That announcement effectively placed the PA in a state of war with Israel.
The day after Abbas announcement, the Fatah wing of the Palestinian Authority – the supposed “moderate” Palestinian Authority rulers of large swaths of Judea and Samaria, led by Mahmoud Abbas and endorsed by President Obama – claimed responsibility for the brutal slaying of a young civilian Israeli couple who committed the crime of driving while Jewish in their homeland.
Eitam Henkin, a doctoral student at Tel-Aviv University, and his wife Na’ama, were slain in front of four of their children. The murders were just the latest in a heavy spate of slaying by Palestinian terrorists over the summer, celebrated by both the PA and Hamas.
No wonder the Palestinian Jew-haters are on the move. As reported last week, President Obama apparently rejected Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-NV) desperate request to include a provision negating any unilateral Palestinian declaration of statehood at the United Nations in the Iran deal rollout.
The Palestinians can do whatever they want so long as President Obama retains power, thanks to his default position: when in doubt, tacitly side with successful and would-be Jew-murderers.
That trend continued after Saturday’s shooting of a toddler and stabbings to death of Jews in Jerusalem: the Obama administration promptly blamed both sides. Here was the pathetic, morally disgusting statement from the anti-Semitic Obama State Department:
The United States strongly condemns all acts of violence, including the tragic stabbing in the Old City of Jerusalem today that left two victims dead and two injured. We call for all perpetrators of violence to be swiftly brought to justice.
So far, so good. But the Obama administration then blamed Israel for the violence:
We are very concerned about mounting tensions in the West Bank and Jerusalem, including the Haram al Sharif/Temple Mount, and call on all sides to take affirmatives steps to restore calm and avoid escalating the situation.
Escalating the situation?GO READ THE WHOLE THING.
In an interview with CBS News, CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper said his organization monitors hate groups regularly, and that the talk surrounding the planned day of rallies on October 10th was unusually concerning.
"At first we didn't want to take it public but at some level you have to warn the community about these potentially violent hate rallies," Hooper said.
CAIR cited a Facebook page titled "Global Rally for Humanity," as being the focal point for planning what is right now estimated to be 20 separate rallies nationwide.
The group is calling on protesters to be armed where permitted. The slogan for the group and their series of rallies is ""The World is Saying No To Islam," and a flyer widely circulated by the group mentions the "3%ers and Oathkeepers."HERE'S A MAP OF THE LOCATIONS.
Twelve Christians have been brutally executed by the Islamic State, including the 12-year-old son of a Syrian ministry team leader who had planted nine churches, because they refused to renounce the name of Jesus Christ and embrace Islam.
The martyrs were faithful to the very end; right before one woman was beheaded by the terror group, she appeared to be smiling slightly as she said, “Jesus!”
According to Christian Aid Mission, a humanitarian group which assists indigenous Christian workers in their native countries, the horrific murders took place on August 28 in an unnamed village outside Aleppo, Syria.
“In front of the team leader and relatives in the crowd, the Islamic extremists cut off the fingertips of the boy and severely beat him, telling his father they would stop the torture only if he, the father, returned to Islam,” Christian Aid revealed, according to a report from Morning Star News.
“When the team leader refused, relatives said, the ISIS militants also tortured and beat him and the two other ministry workers. The three men and the boy then met their deaths in crucifixion.”
They were killed for refusing to return to Islam after embracing Christianity, as were the other eight aid workers, including two women, according to Christian Aid.
The eight were taken to a separate site in the village and asked if they would return to Islam. However, after they refused to renounce Christ, the women, ages 29 and 33, were raped before the crowd summoned to watch, and then all eight were beheaded.
Bishop Eva Brunne has proposed to remove the Christian symbols of the Seamen’s Church in Freeport to make it more inviting for visiting sailors from other religions.
The bishop wants to temporarily make the Seamen’s Church available to all, for example by marking the direction of Mecca and removing Christian symbols, as is already done in common prayer rooms at airports and in some hospital chapel.
“Making a room available for people of other faiths does not mean that we are not defenders of our own faith. Priests are called to proclaim Christ. We do that every day and in every meeting with people. But that does not mean that we are stingy toward people of other faiths,” writes Bishop Eva Brunne…
The proposal has triggered protests. Patrik Pettersson, priest of the Oscars parish in Stockholm, thinks that the proposal is noteworthy and writes on his blog:
“The church chapel can not reasonably be equated with prayer rooms at airports and hospital chapels anyway. The Christian churches and chapels are not public areas at any time.”
And Seamen’s Mission Director Kiki Wetterberg does not agree with the bishop.
“I have no problem with Muslim or Hindu sailors coming here and praying. But I believe that we are a Christian church, so we keep the symbols. If I visit a mosque, I do not ask them to take down their symbols. It’s my choice to go in there,” she says to the newspaper Dagen.
CIA: I'm asking, is our strategy working?
Quinn: What strategy? Tell me what the strategy is. I'll tell you if it's working. See, that right there is the problem. Because they, they have a strategy. They're gathering right now in Raqqa by the tens of thousands. Hidden in the civilian population. Cleaning their weapons.
And they know exactly why they're there. Why is that? They call it the end times. What do you think the beheadings are about? The crucifixions in Deir Hafer? The revival of slavery? You think they make this shit up? It's all in the book. Their fucking book. The only book they ever read. They read it all the time. They never stop.
They're there for one reason and one reason only. To die for the caliphate and usher in a world without infidels. That's their strategy. And it's been that way since the seventh century.Hmmm. Perhaps they've been reading our blog. At least we could have told them that ten years ago. Now let's brace ourselves for the usual outcries of Islamophobia.
The Czech government has proposed that three central European states send hundreds of troops and police to help protect Hungary's borders against a migrant influx into Europe's Schengen passport-free travel zone, officials said on Friday.
The central Europeans have stressed the need to secure the European Union's outer borders as the basis of any response to the inflow of hundreds of thousands of refugees this year.
Hungary's position is seen as pivotal as it forms the external boundary of the EU's Schengen passport-free travel zone.
"Our government is prepared to help Hungary with protection of the Schengen border. We are proposing joint V4 action," Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka said on his Twitter page, referring to the Visegrad 4 group that compromises his country, Slovakia, Poland and Hungary.
Sobotka said their interior ministers would meet on Oct. 8 to tackle the idea. Czech news agency CTK quoted Interior Minister Milan Chovanec as saying the plans could include sending hundreds of Czech, Polish and Slovak soldiers and police officers to help patrol Hungary's southern border for several months.
Yaser Abdel Said (born January 27, 1957) is a fugitive on the FBI Ten Most Wanted List. An Egyptian resident of the United States, he is wanted for the murder of his two teenage daughters in Irving, Texas. Said, a Muslim who is reported to have been very controlling of his daughters, is believed to have felt that his daughters, Amina, 18, and Sarah, 17, had dishonored the family by their refusal to adhere to conservative traditional Islamic behavior. On January 1, 2008, he allegedly lured them into his taxicab on the pretence of taking them out to eat, and shot them in the cab. To this day, Said has evaded police capture, and remains at large.Here's the 911 Call
The sister of the 15-year-old gunman who stormed a police headquarters and killed an accountant may have tried to reach Syria the day before the shooting, it has emerged.
Farhad Jabar Khalil Mohammad shot Curtis Cheng, 58, in the back of the head before he was then gunned down by constables guarding the station in Parramatta,Sydney.
The ‘radicalised’ Iranian-born youth reportedly visited a mosque where he changed into a black robe just before the killing which has been condemned as an ‘act of terrorism’.
It has emerged that his sister Shadi may have been attempting to reach Iraq or Syria the day before the shooting as she flew out of Australia on a flight bound for Istanbul on Thursday.
She reportedly took all her belongings with her, according to the ABC.