Thursday, November 30, 2017

Convicted of war crime poisoned during trial

Slobodan Praljak was sentenced to 20 years in prison for crimes against humanity during the Bosnian War


Former Bosnian-Croat leader  Slobodan Praljak  was poisoned during his trial at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia ( ICTY ) on Wednesday and died. Seconds after hearing the sentence that sentenced him to 20 years in prison for crimes against humanity during the Bosnian War , the defendant brought a bottle to his mouth. "I just took poison," he said.
Immediately the judge ordered the court session to be adjourned. According to reporters from international agencies who were in court, an ambulance was called to the scene. Praljak, however, did not resist. The death of the former Bosnian leader was officially confirmed by Croatian Prime Minister  Andrej Plenkovic. 
Praljak had already been convicted in 2013 of having persecuted, expelled and murdered Muslims during the Bosnian War, one of the most traumatic of the twentieth century. He was held responsible for the destruction of the Old Bridge in 1993 in the historic center of the city of Mostar, which, according to the judges, caused disproportionate damage to the Muslim populations.

US threatens to 'totally destroy' North Korean regime

In an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council, the ambassador said that the missile is a provocation that leaves the world 'closer to the war'



The United States warned that North Korea's leadership would be "utterly destroyed" in the event of a war after Pyongyang tested its most advanced missile , placing the continental United States within reach of its nuclear weapons and violating Security Council resolutions of the United Nations ( UN ).
The administration of US President Donald Trump has been saying he is considering all options to deal with North Korean nuclear weapons and ballistic programs, including the military, but prefers the diplomatic option.
Speaking at an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council, US ambassador Nikki Haley said her country had never sought the war with North Korea.
"If war does come, it will be because of the continuous acts of aggression like we witnessed yesterday," he said. "... and if the war comes, make no mistake, the North Korean regime will be utterly destroyed."
Haley said Washington had called on China to halt the supply of oil to North Korea, a drastic measure that Beijing , Pyongyang's only neighbor and major trading partner, has avoided adopting so far. Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping talked by telephone earlier Wednesday.
"I just spoke to President Xi Jinping of China about the provocations of North Korea. Additional sanctions will be imposed on North Korea today. This situation will be solved! "Trump wrote on Twitter.
Earlier US governments were unable to prevent North Korea from developing nuclear weapons and a sophisticated missile program. Trump, who has already said that the United States would "totally destroy" North Korea if necessary to protect itself and its allies from the nuclear threat, has also been struggling to contain Pyongyang since taking office in January.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

We will take care of this," Trump says after North Korea launches missile




WASHINGTON - After North Korea launches a new ballistic missile on Tuesday, US President Donald Trump has said he will take care of the situation. Trump has been applying several sanctions to the North Korean regime and has put the country on a list of supporters of terrorism for 10 days. The Asian nation has sparked international alert over its banned nuclear missile program, but has not held a test since September 15. The last missile 


We'll take care of it," Trump said, without giving more details. "We have a very serious approach and nothing has changed.

Trump was visiting Congress at the time of the test and heard the news when the missile was still on the air. The United States, Japan and South Korea called for an urgent UN meeting on the new North Korean test that South Korea's Yonhap agency said was fired from Pyongsong in South Pyongyan province eastward. South Korean military are examining details with the United States, the agency added.
"We have detected a probable missile launch from North Korea. We are studying the situation and will provide additional details as they become available, "Pentagon spokesman Robert Manning told reporters.


The Pentagon said initial assessments indicate that an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) was tested, which flew a thousand kilometers into the Japanese Sea. The Japanese government estimated that the projectile flew for 50 minutes , according to NHK. In a statement, the Joint Chiefs of Staff of South Korea said that Seoul and Washington are analyzing the type of missile that Pyongyang launched.

Trump makes a joke about Pocahontas by honoring Native Americans



US President Donald Trump made a "joke" on the Pocahontas indigenous princess, seizing the occasion to attack a Democratic opponent by honoring Native American ex-combatants of the Second World War in the Oval Office of the White House.
Trump left the protocol aside when, in the midst of an act in honor of Navajo natives, creators of a wartime communication code that the Japanese never managed to decipher, he mentioned Pocahontas to refer to Senator Elizabeth Warren from the left wing of the Democratic Party.

"However, we have a representative in Congress who, they say, was here a long time ago. They call her Pocahontas, "she continued, causing several members of her team to laugh.
Pocahontas was the favored daughter of the Indian chief Powhatan and fell in love with an English settler, John Smith.
Trump often uses the nickname to refer to Warren, fierce opponent of the president and who usually mentions his native roots by his mother.

The president commented on Pocahontas with the three former Navajo fighters standing

 under the photo of controversial President Andrew Jackson, who ordered the forcible expulsion of Native Americans from their ancestral lands, killing thousands.
Warren was quick to react.
"Donald Trump continues to degrade the presidential cabinet," he said in a statement, stressing that the Navajo deserve "the praise and gratitude" of the nation.
"What Trump showed today was a shame for our values ​​and a shameful insult to the heroes of our history," he concluded.
Subsequently, the White House denied any racial connotation in the president's words. Trump's spokeswoman Sarah Sanders defended the use of her nickname and called the accusations of racism ridiculous.
"I think what most people believe to be offensive is the fact that Senator Warren mentions her origins to advance her career," he said.
During World War II, the United States used hundreds of Native Americans from different tribes, whose ancestral dialects served as an undecipherable communication code for their enemies.
The pronunciation and vocabulary of the indigenous languages ​​were then unknown to the Germans and the Japanese, who integrated the Axis together with Italy.

For US analyst, Russia is not even one of the top 5 threats to the US


Russia does not threaten the existence of the US, yet US politicians have argued for years. This was pointed out by Stephen F. Cohen, a specialist in political science and Russian affairs, during John Batchelor's television program.
According to him, allegations about alleged Russian threat are heard in the US daily, even becoming "recognized reality." However, according to Cohen, Russia is not even one of the top five threats to the United States. 
According to the expert, the biggest threat to the United States is called "russiagate", a scandal related to Donald Trump's alleged ties to Moscow, even though they have not been proven.
These "unconfirmed but increasingly insistent statements" about Trump being compromised by the Kremlin or even being controlled by him are at the top of the list of threats to the US, as they may lead to deteriorating relations between Russia and the US and until it triggered military conflict.
Cohen criticizes the US media that explains in a negative way the US president's desire to improve relations with Russia, in particular, around the Syrian crisis. Thus, The New York Times accused Trump of betraying US interests, Washington Post columnist Josh Rogin said that "Trump throws Syria in favor of Russia."
The US analyst also recalled the words of several Democratic politicians in his country who described Russia's "hacking attacks" as "war" on the United States.
"What could be more foolish than insisting that we are at war with another nuclear superpower?" The analyst wondered. 
For him, the second biggest threat to the US is the demonization of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who, according to Cohen, has no analogues in history. He stressed that no Soviet or post-Soviet leader was infamous in such a furious and unfounded way.
Cohen believes that, precisely because of this, the US is losing an important partner in the matter of national security, which is of particular importance to the Americans.
The third threat on Cohen's list is the Daesh (a terrorist organization banned in Russia and several other countries) and other terrorist organizations. "This real threat would be the main one if the elites of politics and the American average had not created the first two," he said.
Then the list of threats to the US includes the growth in the number of nations with nuclear weapons. "In 1949 there were two, now there are nine," he recalls, adding that "in times of conflict and religious wars and between nations, fanaticism is capable of destroying the taboo using nuclear weapons."
The fifth position is given to global warming and global economic inequality.
He said that neither Russia nor China is on the list: in his opinion, these two countries represent illusory threats, invented by Washington. As for the alliance between Moscow and Beijing, which is in fact the result of contradictory US policy, it is a subject for another conversation, Cohen added.

In 6 months, 'trade war' between US and China could explode, warns expert


What direction will relations take between the two world economies - the US and China - in the context of increasing tensions in the Korean peninsula? A former Pentagon official describes the possible scenarios. Graham Allison, who served as special adviser to the US Secretary of Defense during President Ronald Reagan's inauguration, believes the US may increase its pressure on China to contain North Korea.
The former official assumes Washington will implement unilateral trade measures against Beijing "early next year."
At the same time, he notes that "the Chinese government has already announced that it will retaliate if the Trump Administration adopts these unilateral initiatives," Allison told The South China Morning Post.
"So in six months we could find ourselves in a trade war, which would be very damaging for both countries," warned the American politician.
Graham Allison also served as undersecretary of defense under the then Administration of then-US President Bill Clinton. He was also director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University (USA).
In his latest book "Destined for War: Can the US and China Escape Thucydides' Trap?", Allison warns that there is a possibility of a trade war between Washington and Beijing, and reveals what steps must be taken by both to avoid catastrophe.

Winner of Oscar says if Hillary Clinton had won, we would be at war


US actress and activist Susan Sarandon said she believed that if Democrat Hillary Clinton had won the United States presidential election in 2016, "we would be at war."
"I thought she was very dangerous," Sarandon said in an interview with the British newspaper The Guardian.
The Oscar-winning actress in the 1990s continues to lure critics of pro-Hillary activists because of her support for Vermont Democratic Senator Bernie Sanders (defeated by the former US Secretary of State in the primaries of the Democratic Party), and by her subsequent vote for Green Party candidate Jill Stein in last year's elections.
"I received from Hillary's militants [things like] 'I hope your groin is seized', 'I hope you've been raped.'" Misogynist attacks, "she said.
Asked if Hillary was more dangerous than the current US president, Republican Donald Trump, Sarandon opined.
"I thought she was very, very dangerous, we would still be frustrated, we would be at war [if she were president]." It would not be a lot smoother, see what happened under [Barack] Obama we did not realize, "said the actress.
Hillary Clinton has a long history of supporting US interventions around the world. Her vote was important for the war in Iraq, and she showed the same zeal to overthrow Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi - celebrating her death - are just some of the reasons why pacifists chose not to vote for her.
While Trump has not been able to stop US interventionism since it came to power, Hillary had advocated a no-fly zone over Syria, which would likely lead to war between the US, Syria and Russia. 
The former US secretary of state admitted that a no-fly zone would "kill many Syrians" in a 2013 speech leaked by the WikiLeaks organization ahead of the election. It also maintains an aggressive stance against Iran and promised, in 2008, an attitude against Tehran.
"If I am president, we will attack Iran. In the next 10 years, during which they may be foolish to consider launching an attack on Israel, we can completely obliterate them."
"It was not a protest vote"
Sarandon voted for Jill Stein in New York, which, atirz explains, "was probably the easiest place to vote for Stein," as Trump would not win in that state. "Bringing attention to working class issues is not a luxury," she said of her decision. "People are really frustrated. That's how this [Trump] guy came in."
"It was not a protest vote," he added. "After Bernie, it was not a protest."
In addition to a pro-war stance, Hillary's apparent inability to understand the anger felt by Americans, still living with the effects of the global financial crisis and its centrist policies, meant that she was not a viable candidate for Sarandon and others - even with the threat of a Trump presidency.
Sarandon highlighted Clinton's refusal to support a $ 15 minimum wage as a non-feminist stance.
The actress believes that the blame she attributed to the loss of the Democrat is part of the reason the Democrats will lose again.
"Well, that's why we're going to lose again if we depend on DNC [the Democratic National Committee]," she said. "Because the amount of denial ... I mean, it's very flattering to think that I, myself, would cost the election. That my little voice was the deciding factor."
"This is disturbing to me more from the point of view of thinking that they have not learned," he added.
Sarandon also pointed to the fact that "you can not judge by the mainstream media what is happening in the country," a quote The Guardian put in parentheses and described it as "the space in which the far right meets the left."
"How do we lose all our journalists and media?" She asked.

Latest San Juan statement: short circuit and fire

Latest statement from ARA San Juan with control bases was announced by the Argentine channel



The Argentine television channel A24 revealed Monday night the contents of the last message between the disappeared submarine ARA San Juan and the bases of control in the continent. The text, sent on the morning of November 15, testifies that a water intake by the ventilation system "caused a short circuit and a fire principle" in the tank of batteries.
"Entry of sea water by the ventilation system in battery tank No. 3 caused short circuit and fire principle in the area of battery bars," reads the statement released by the Argentine channel, which continues: "Batteries of the bow out of service. At the moment in immersion, propulsion with split circuit. No news of staff. I'll keep you informed. " 
Navy spokesman Enrique Balbi confirmed the statement but asked for caution. "The problem was solved, they isolated the battery and sailed with another circuit," said the military, who left open the possibility of an "implosion" in the submarine, because "a fire could have happened, a fast combustion that consumes oxygen" .
"hydroacoustic anomaly" detected on the morning of November 15 was pointed out by the Argentine Navy as "an anomalous event, singular, short, violent and non-nuclear, consistent with an explosion . The information came from the ambassador of Argentina in Austria, and matches with records indicated in a report compiled by the United States.
The ARA San Juan made their last contact when it was going from Ushuaia, in the extreme south of  Argentina , to Mar del Plata, about 400 kilometers south of Buenos Aires. That same morning, the captain of the submarine had reported a breakdown in the batteries of the vessel. Specialists consulted by the Argentine newspaper  La NaciĆ³n  indicate that the sea area where the watercraft may have disappeared is about 700 meters deep. 
More than 4,000 people and 90% of the operational force between naval and naval means participate in the search operations for ARA San Juan, the Argentine Navy announced on what has been described as "an unprecedented operational effort in the last forty years." Rescues in search of the submarine with 44 creware aided by fourteen countries, among them Brazil.
Although the chances of finding the vessel are remote , the Navy has planned all the logistics for a possible rescue of the crew. One of the options is the Norwegian Skandi Patagonia, equipped with four unmanned U.S. submarinesand a capsule to be attached to San Juan . 

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