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Fri Nov 8, 2019, 07:44 AM

5 Stories from Europe You May Have Missed

1. Russian Authorities See 'Violent Sexual Assault' In Video Of Kids Chatting With Gay Man

It seemed like a good idea at the time: create a series of YouTube videos in which children sit down to talk to people who are often marginalized by society. For instance, the elderly, the disabled, people with eating disorders, or homosexuals.

"It was a purely social project," a source involved with the project told RFE/RL on condition of anonymity out of fear of harassment or persecution. "It was absolutely noncommercial."

But one video in the Real Talk series – in which children between the ages of 6 and 13 ask questions of a male homosexual -- caught the attention of a group of socially conservative Russian State Duma deputies. Under pressure from the lawmakers, the Investigative Committee announced on November 2 that it was opening a criminal probe on suspicion of "violent sexual assault on a minor under the age of 14."


For several months, the video didn't attract any particular attention. But sometime in the summer, State Duma deputy speaker Pyotr Tolstoi, Duma Deputy Vitaly Milonov, and Public Chamber member Elina Zhgutova began filing complaints with law enforcement agencies, urging them to look into alleged violations of the rights of children.


2. Italian Holocaust survivor given police escort after far-right threats

An Italian Holocaust survivor has been assigned a police escort after an escalation of threats from far-right extremists.

Liliana Segre, a senator for life, receives an average 200 online threats a day, many against her life. Earlier this year, a teacher from the Veneto region wrote on Facebook that Segre “would do well in a nice little incinerator”.


Animosity towards Segre, 89, was amplified after the far-right parties, the League and Brothers of Italy, as well as Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia, refused to back the proposal, sparking fury from the Vatican and Rome’s Jewish community.

Renato Saccone, the prefect of Milan, where Segre lives, was moved to act after Forza Nuova, a neo-fascist political party, hung up a banner criticising the anti-fascism movement close to a theatre where the 89-year-old was making a speech on Tuesday.


3. Angela Merkel's CDU wins Gorlitz Mayor race, beating far-right AfD

The eastern German city of Gorlitz, nicknamed "Gorliwood" because of the dozens of movies filmed there, backed Chancellor Angela Merkel's party on Sunday, electing Christian Democrat (CDU) candidate Octavian Ursu as mayor and rejecting AfD candidate Sebastian Wippel.

Wippel would have been the country's first mayor from the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party. He won the first round of the election on May 26 with 36% of the vote but did not manage to defeat the CDU candidate in the second round.

Ursu won the runoff with just over 55% after other parties supported him.


4. France's Macron Says NATO 'Brain-Dead,' Russia Says Comment 'Golden'

French President Emmanuel Macron has warned fellow European countries that NATO is dying because of Washington's lack of predictability under President Donald Trump, a view quickly rejected by Germany but hailed by Russia.


"What we are currently experiencing is the brain death of NATO," Macron told The Economist on November 7.


"The French president has found rather drastic words to express his views. This is not how I see the state of cooperation at NATO," Merkel told a news conference in Berlin alongside alliance chief Jens Stoltenberg.


However, Macron's assessment was hailed in Moscow, where Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called it "golden words...a precise definition of the current state of NATO."


5.Attempted Murder, Alleged Sodomy, Poison Pills: A Plague Of Scandals Consumes Georgia’s Orthodox Church

First there was the priest sentenced for allegedly plotting to poison a top church official. Then there was the other priest who alleged that Georgia’s prime minister and a billionaire businessman wanted to kill the church’s revered spiritual leader.

Oh, and don’t forget the priest who nearly got into a fight with clergymen and who, after being forcibly thrown out of an extraordinary meeting, accused the church’s leader on live TV of being “possessed by the sin of pederasty and sodomy.”


“What is going on now is what I would call the biggest scandal in the history of the Georgian church,” Mirian Gamrekelashvili, a Munich-based academic, told RFE/RL.


The political intrigue that has been simmering for several years has focused in part on longstanding accusations of corruption, and the vast wealth that the church has amassed with little transparency or oversight.


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Reply 5 Stories from Europe You May Have Missed (Original post)
rpannier Nov 8 OP
lark Nov 8 #1
DFW Nov 8 #2

Response to rpannier (Original post)

Fri Nov 8, 2019, 09:35 AM

1. What Russia heard -

Your tool is destroying NATO and they predictably rejoiced that their plan was bearing fruit.

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Response to rpannier (Original post)

Fri Nov 8, 2019, 09:42 AM

2. Russia freaked when its former colonies and empire possessions joined NATO

Under NATO treaty conditions, an "attack on one is an attack on all."

There, Russia was never going to attack anyone. However, there is nothing in the NATO treaty saying than neutering one country is neutering them all, so he goes for the strongest to leave the weakest dangling. As long as we have Trumppence and Moscow Mitch around, I'd say Putin has every reason to think he has been successful so far. The only shots Russians have fired have been in their own former empire (Ukraine). Savushkina Street 55 and the three GRU directorates have done the rest, with their most violent weapon of mass destruction being a computer keyboard.

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