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dkf

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Member since: 2003 before July 6th
Number of posts: 37,305

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Well our Nobel peace price winning President is threatening Iran militarily now.

That's just great.

Obama says Iran shouldn’t misinterpret U.S. response to Syria
By Zachary A. Goldfarb, Published: SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 9:25 AM ET
Aa
President Obama declared that the United States is still prepared to act militarily to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons despite the decision to pursue a diplomatic deal and not strike Syria over its alleged use of chemical weapons.

He also acknowledged that his approach to the Syria crisis has been uneven, but defended it as producing the right results.

Obama spoke in an interview broadcast Sunday on ABC’s “This Week With George Stephanopoulos,” taped Friday before the United States and Russia agreed on a plan to bring Syrian chemical weapons under international control in order to avoid military strikes.

But Obama said Iran should not interpret the diplomatic response — coming after he threatened to use strikes — as suggesting that the United States wouldn’t attack Iran to stop the development of nuclear weapons.

http://m.washingtonpost.com/politics/obama-says-iran-shouldnt-misinterpret-us-response-to-syria/2013/09/15/fd6f27cc-1e05-11e3-8459-657e0c72fec8_print.html

Will Kerry ask Israel to ratify chemical weapons treaty?

Top Israeli defense officials awake at night
Kerry's visit to Israel on Sunday, in which he will update Netanyahu on the agreement to dismantle Syrian chemical weapons, is likely keeping to keep top defense officials up at night.

When U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrives at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem on Sunday, he will present Benjamin Netanyahu with a detailed outline of the agreement to dismantle Syria’s chemical weapons.

After the consultants leave the two for a tete-a-tete, Kerry may make a request that has been keeping quite a few top Israeli defense officials awake at night.

Kerry may tell Netanyahu the United States is working to remove one of the gravest threats on Israel’s security, by combining a credible military threat with creative diplomacy. Now, Kerry may say, the U.S. needs Israel’s help by ratifying the treaty prohibiting the use of chemical weapons.

Presumably, senior officials in the Prime Minister’s Office have been playing this scenario in their heads in recent days.

After Foreign Policy magazine last week published documents from the CIA archive about Israel’s chemical weapons program, the Foreign Ministry began preparing for the possibility that the international media would raise the issue.

http://www.haaretz.com/mobile/1.546990

How US Ambassador Chris Stevens May Have Been Linked To Jihadist Rebels In Syria

From Oct 2012

The official position is that the U.S. has refused to allow heavy weapons into Syria.

But there's growing evidence that U.S. agents — particularly murdered ambassador Chris Stevens — were at least aware of heavy weapons moving from Libya to jihadist Syrian rebels.

In March 2011 Stevens became the official U.S. liaison to the al-Qaeda-linked Libyan opposition, working directly with Abdelhakim Belhadj of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group — a group that has now disbanded, with some fighters reportedly participating in the attack that took Stevens' life.

In November 2011 The Telegraph reported that Belhadj, acting as head of the Tripoli Military Council, "met with Free Syrian Army [FSA] leaders in Istanbul and on the border with Turkey" in an effort by the new Libyan government to provide money and weapons to the growing insurgency in Syria.

Last month The Times of London reported that a Libyan ship "carrying the largest consignment of weapons for Syria … has docked in Turkey." The shipment reportedly weighed 400 tons and included SA-7 surface-to-air anti-craft missiles and rocket-propelled grenades.

Those heavy weapons are most likely from Muammar Gaddafi's stock of about 20,000 portable heat-seeking missiles—the bulk of them SA-7s—that the Libyan leader obtained from the former Eastern bloc. Reuters reports that Syrian rebels have been using those heavy weapons to shoot down Syrian helicopters and fighter jets.


Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/us-syria-heavy-weapons-jihadists-2012-10#ixzz2etgOJA7m

Isn't it about time we learned what our involvement has been in Syria via Libya and if involved who we were arming?

At least 1,200 different Syrian rebel groups

As recently as late July, at a security conference in Aspen, Colorado, the deputy director of the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency, David Shedd, estimated that there were at least 1,200 different Syrian rebel groups and that Islamic extremists, notably the Nusra Front, were well-placed to expand their influence.

"Left unchecked, I'm very concerned that the most radical elements will take over larger segments" of the opposition groups, Shedd said. He added that the conflict could drag on anywhere "from many, many months to multiple years" and that a prolonged stalemate could leave open parts of Syria to potential control by radical fighters.

U.S. and allied intelligence sources said that such assessments have not changed.

A spokeswoman at the State Department said Kerry's remarks reflect the department's position, adding that the opposition had "taken steps over the past months to coalesce, including electing leaders."

http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/3870782

Two battles with Al-Qaeda rebels and Kurds, moderate Syrians.

Syrian Rebel Infighting Kills 5 Near Iraqi Border

September 14, 201312:36 PM

BEIRUT (AP) — Al-Qaida-affiliated rebels battled more moderate Syrian opposition fighters in a town along the Iraqi border on Saturday, killing at least five people in the latest outbreak of infighting among the forces opposed to President Bashar Assad's regime.

Clashes between rebel groups, particularly pitting al-Qaida-linked extremist factions against more moderate units, have grown increasingly common in recent months, undermining the opposition's primary goal of overthrowing Assad.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Saturday's fighting took place in the town of al-Boukamal between the al-Qaida-linked Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant against more mainstream rebel groups.

Observatory director Rami Abdul-Rahman said the more moderate rebels used mosque loudspeakers Friday to demand the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant leave Boukamal. When it was clear Saturday the ISIL had no plans to decamp, the mainstream groups attacked, Abdul-Rahman said. Three mainstream rebels and two ISIL fighters were killed in the clashes, he said.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=222398445

Dozens of Syrian rebels and Kurds killed in clashes

BEIRUT (Reuters) - A surge of clashes in Syria's oil-producing northeast has killed dozens of rebels and Kurdish fighters in the past two days, activists said on Thursday, in fighting that highlights a struggle for territory and resources.

Fighters from Syria's ethnic Kurdish minority - roughly 10 percent of the 23-million-strong population - have carved out an increasingly autonomous region near the frontiers with Iraq and Turkey.

Syrian Kurdish militants, particularly the armed wing of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), have repeatedly clashed with opposition fighters led by al Qaeda-linked units in the region as government forces retreated over the past year.

The fighting has underlined the growing complexity of Syria's conflict which started with largely peaceful protests against President Bashar al-Assad and degenerated into a civil war that has killed more than 100,000 people.

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSBRE98B0O520130912?irpc=932

It's the after Assad situation that will be a bloodbath.

Momentum against Larry Summers builds in the Senate (Tester says no, 3 more Ds likely no)

The opposition among Democrats to Larry Summers as the next Federal Reserve chairman grew on Friday when Sen. Jon Tester announced he would vote against the former Obama economic adviser if he is nominated for the post.

President Barack Obama has yet to announce whom he will nominate to replace Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, whose term ends Jan. 31, but Summers’ opponents are doing their best to be heard.

Tester (D-Mont.) opposes Summers because of concerns about the role he played in easing financial regulations during the Clinton administration, when he served as Treasury secretary, according to his office.


Senate aides expect as many as three other Democrats on the Banking Committee to oppose Summers — Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) — although they have not publicly declared how they will vote.


The Banking Committee has 12 Democrats and 10 Republicans, which means that for the panel to report Summers’ nomination favorably to the full Senate, a Republican “yes” vote would be needed for every Democrat who votes “no.”


http://www.politico.com/story/2013/09/peter-king-2016-message-rand-paul-barack-obama-dangerous-96742.html?ml=tb

Low levels of healthy gut bacteria could be the cause of mental health issues

Eat more yogurt! Low levels of healthy gut bacteria could be the cause of mental health issues such as 'anxiety and schizophrenia'

People suffering from anxiety, might just need to eat more 'healthy' bacteria.

Some scientists think there may be a link between our digestive tract microbes and disorders such as anxiety, schizophrenia and autism.

They are beginning to recognise the power of healthy gut bacteria, especially seeing that the average adult carries up to five pounds of bacteria - trillions of microbes - in their digestive tract.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2419418/Low-levels-healthy-gut-bacteria-cause-mental-health-issues-anxiety-schizophrenia-say-scientists.html

Crazy neocon: Obama doesn’t get to say he is tired of war

Eliot A. Cohen teaches at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies. From 2007 to 2009, he was counselor of the State Department.

It is the phrase of the moment, dropping from the lips of television reporters and radio commentators, salting the columns of pundits, earnestly being spoken by furrow-browed politicians of serious mien.

The families of the fallen are entitled to war-weariness. So are those wounded in body or spirit, and their loved ones. The mother who has sent her son to war has a right to war-weariness, as does the father who prepares to send his daughter to battle again and again. But for the great mass of the American public, for their leaders and the elites who shape public opinion, “war-weariness” is unearned cant, unworthy of a serious nation and dangerous in a violent world.


The average American has not served in the armed forces, as a diplomat or intelligence agent in a war zone. Neither have his or her children. No one has raised our taxes to pay for war. Americans can change the channel if they find the images too disturbing — though our teenagers’ violent video games and gory movies are infinitely more graphic than what would be shown on CNN or Fox News.

“I am not going to send your children to fight this misbegotten war,” or words like that, come from politicians who know full well that our country has an all-volunteer force. No one is sending anyone who did not sign up. And anyone who volunteered for military service in the past decade had to know that meant signing up for war.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/obama-doesnt-get-to-say-he-is-tired-of-war/2013/09/12/465cdb20-1bd9-11e3-a628-7e6dde8f889d_story.html

NSA disguised itself as Google to spy, say reports

If a recently leaked document is any indication, the US National Security Agency -- or its UK counterpart -- appears to have put on a Google suit to gather intelligence.


Earlier this week, Techdirt picked up on a passing mention in a Brazilian news story and a Slate article to point out that the US National Security Agency had apparently impersonated Google on at least one occasion to gather data on people. (Mother Jones subsequently pointed out Techdirt's point-out.)

Brazilian site Fantastico obtained and published a document leaked by Edward Snowden, which diagrams how a "man in the middle attack" involving Google was apparently carried out.

A technique commonly used by hackers, a MITM attack involves using a fake security certificate to pose as a legitimate Web service, bypass browser security settings, and then intercept data that an unsuspecting person is sending to that service. Hackers could, for example, pose as a banking Web site and steal passwords.

The technique is particularly sly because the hackers then use the password to log in to the real banking site and then serve as a "man in the middle," receiving requests from the banking customer, passing them on to the bank site, and then returning requested info to the customer -- all the while collecting data for themselves, with neither the customer nor the bank realizing what's happening. Such attacks can be used against e-mail providers too.

It's not clear if the supposed attack in the Fantastico document was handled by the NSA or by its UK counterpart, the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ). The article by the Brazilian news agency says, "In this case, data is rerouted to the NSA central, and then relayed to its destination, without either end noticing.

"There have been rumors of the NSA and others using those kinds of MITM attacks," Mike Masnick writes on Techdirt, "but to have it confirmed that they're doing them against the likes of Google... is a big deal -- and something I would imagine does not make [Google] particularly happy".

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-57602701-38/nsa-disguised-itself-as-google-to-spy-say-reports/

Google knows nearly every Wi-Fi password in the world

If an Android device (phone or tablet) has ever logged on to a particular Wi-Fi network, then Google probably knows the Wi-Fi password. Considering how many Android devices there are, it is likely that Google can access most Wi-Fi passwords worldwide.

Recently IDC reported that 187 million Android phones were shipped in the second quarter of this year. That multiplies out to 748 million phones in 2013, a figure that does not include Android tablets.

Many (probably most) of these Android phones and tablets are phoning home to Google, backing up Wi-Fi passwords along with other assorted settings. And, although they have never said so directly, it is obvious that Google can read the passwords.

Sounds like a James Bond movie.

Android devices have defaulted to coughing up Wi-Fi passwords since version 2.2. And, since the feature is presented as a good thing, most people wouldn't change it. I suspect that many Android users have never even seen the configuration option controlling this. After all, there are dozens and dozens of system settings to configure.

http://blogs.computerworld.com/android/22806/google-knows-nearly-every-wi-fi-password-world
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