Saturday, February 02, 2013

Report: Bin Laden's son-in-law caught in Ankara

Report: Bin Laden's son-in-law caught in Ankara

The son-in-law of the late al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden has been caught in Turkey and is to be deported to Iran, a news report has claimed.

Suleiman M., bin Laden's son-in-law, was captured in a joint operation carried out by Turkey's National Intelligence Organization (MİT) and the Central Intelligence Agency of the US (CIA), the Milliyet daily reported on Friday.

 

After being informed by the CIA of the whereabouts of Suleiman, MİT captured him at a hotel where he was staying in the district of Çankaya. He reportedly came to Turkey from Iran using a fake Saudi passport.

 

Suleiman, who had formerly obtained Kuwaiti citizenship, was deported by Kuwait as he was wanted by the US on charges of being implicated in terrorist activities, the daily maintained.

 

According to the story, Suleiman, who was a stateless person, was taken before a court after being interrogated at the Security General Directorate (EGM). But he was released by the court into the custody of the Security General Directorate to be deported, as he had committed no crime in Turkey other than having entered the country with a false passport. The US, seeking to interrogate Suleiman regarding al-Qaeda, demanded that he be extradited, but Turkey will reportedly deport him back to Iran in accordance with Turkish laws on illegal entry.     

 

Suleiman is reported to have disappeared from an al-Qaeda camp in Afghanistan following the 9/11 attacks in 2001, and to have been kept under control in a special camp in Iran. After having been removed by Iran from the camp, he arrived in Turkey, allegedly seeking political asylum, using a false passport. He reportedly wishes to go to Saudi Arabia, where his wife lives.

 

MİT and the EGM have reportedly informed İdris Naim Şahin, the former Turkish interior minister, and people close to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of the case.

Dana Milbank: With a friend like Jim Inhofe ... - The Washington Post

If this is how Jim Inhofe treats his friends, one shudders to think what he does to his enemies.

“I have known Senator Kerry for many years and consider him a friend,” the Republican senator from Oklahoma said this week on the occasion of the Senate’s vote to confirm Inhofe’s dear friend John Kerry as secretary of state. “I again state that I consider him a friend,” Inhofe added.

Inhofe rewarded this friendship by being one of only three senators to vote against Kerry’s confirmation on Tuesday.

On Thursday, Inhofe had the chance to greet another old friend, former senator Chuck Hagel, a Nebraska Republican nominated to be President Obama’s defense secretary. “You and I are very good friends,” Inhofe informed Hagel at the confirmation hearing.

Inhofe further informed his friend Hagel that his “record is deeply troubling and out of the mainstream” and that Hagel believes in “appeasing our adversaries while shunning our friends.” Inhofe then recited a poem about the ills of appeasement.

Inhofe values his friendship with Hagel so much, in fact, that he decided to vote against his confirmation even before listening to his testimony.

Why? “He’s just, in my opinion, wrong on the issues in the Middle East,” Inhofe told Fox News just before the confirmation hearing. “But he’s right in line, I might say, with President Obama.”...

-bth: Inhofe is a knownthing of the modern era.

 

Friday, February 01, 2013

Ansar al Sharia Egypt calls on Muslims to resist France in Mali

Ansar al Sharia Egypt calls on Muslims to resist France in Mali - The Long War Journal

Ansar al Sharia Egypt, an extremist group headed by an al Qaeda-allied jihadist, has called on Muslims to pray for a jihadist victory in Mali and to "[q]uickly offer material and moral support for the Muslim Mali people." The group's statement, which was authored by an Egyptian Salafist named Jalaluddin Abu al Fotouh and released online in late January, was translated by the SITE Intelligence Group.

Al Fotouh argues that France's "real motives" for the war, which is "supported by Crusader Europe and tyrannical America and the rest of the forces of evil against the Muslims in Mali," are to prevent the implementation of sharia law. This is a common argument advanced by Salafi Jihadists in the wake of France's intervention.

"The forces of evil and disbelief cannot be silent about the establishment of a real Islamic State that is committed to the Qur'an and the Sunnah [traditions of the Prophet Muhammad], especially regarding its foreign relations with the countries of the world," Al Fotouh claims, according to SITE's translation. "They want Mali to be subordinate, servile, and weak and frail so as to be able to loot its resources and steal its wealth."


Read more: http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2013/02/ansar_al_sharia_egyp_1.php#ixzz2Jgs2SMbj
-bth: people need to be paying attention to what is being said and what is coming.

Washington Times gets action! Indiana Gov. spikes deal with Pakistani bomb supplier

Washington Times gets action! Indiana Gov. spikes deal with Pakistani bomb supplier - Washington Times

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has suspended a deal to finance an in-state fertilizer plant to be built by a Pakistani conglomerate that the Pentagon has criticized for refusing to take steps to stop the flow of materials to makers of bombs that kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

News of Mr. Pence’s action followed a report Monday in The Washington Times that said Pakistan’s Fatima Group stood to benefit from the sale of $1.27 billion in tax-exempt municipal bonds in Indiana even as it rebuffed Pentagon efforts to save U.S. lives.

The governor “immediately ordered that the project be suspended pending further investigation,” said Pence spokeswoman Christina Denault. “Indiana is actively investigating in consultation with federal authorities/[Defense Department] the situation at this time.”

Ms. Denault said Mr. Pence was briefed on “new developments regarding Fatima Group” on Jan. 14 shortly after taking office.

The Times reported that ArmyLt. Gen. Michael Barbero, whose office oversees efforts to thwart homemade bombs in Afghanistan, had criticized Fatima in testimony before a Senate subcommittee in December.

Gen. Barbero said Fatima had refused to take simple steps to prevent its calcium ammonium nitrate — a fertilizing compound used by bomb-makers — from being smuggled to Taliban operatives in Afghanistan.

Homemade bombs — known as improvised explosive devices (IEDs) — are the No. 1 killers of U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

The Pakistani Embassy in Washington this week provided The Times with a statement defending Fatima’s conduct and pledging cooperation.

Fatima “has been forthcoming and cooperative in initiating all the measures suggested by the government of Pakistan and the U.S.,” the statement said.

In his testimony last month, Gen. Barbero said that Fatima is the only source of calcium ammonium nitrate being smuggled into Afghanistan, which outlaws importation of the substance. He said 85 percent of IEDs used to kill and maim Americans are homemade, and the majority of those are made with ammonium nitrate.

Gen. Barbero, who directs the Pentagon's Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization, testified that he had asked a Fatima official to begin dyeing its calcium ammonium nitrate so it could be picked out at border crossings. He said smugglers mask the compound as detergent.

He also asked Fatima to make unspecified changes that would allow the U.S. to use its sophisticated tracking technology. The general called Fatima “less than cooperative.”...

-bth Indiana Governor Pence is aboslutely right on this.  Why give Fatima that has refused to put marking dye and other trace elements into their fertilizer so that it can be spotted and identified which has killed or wounded thousands of American soldiers, Paksitanis and Afghans?  Why given them $1.27 billion in tax exempt bonds in Indiana when they pull this shit year after year?

Ford's open-source kit brings era of smart car apps

Ford's open-source kit brings era of smart car apps - tech - 24 January 2013 - New Scientist

OpenXC will set the hacker community loose on Ford's car computer systems – expect a host of apps to improve vehicles' performance and efficiency

MIRROR, signal, manoeuvre - now set your engine to "supercar". Car maker Ford has just released OpenXC - an open-source hardware and software toolkit that will let the hacker community play around with the computer systems that run modern cars. While the first apps may add nothing more exciting than internet radio, the open nature of the system should eventually lead to custom apps that give drivers far more control over their car's performance.

Most cars are now run by computers that control everything from the engine to the incline of the seats but, until now, the driver has used only the data on speed, engine revs and fuel level. OpenXC will "demystify the details" of a car's software, says K. Venkatesh Prasad of Ford Research and Innovation in Dearborn, Michigan. A driver will be able to download approved apps from a Ford store onto their smartphone that can then communicate with a car's computer system.

Such apps may harness some underused parts of a car. For example, if a car with a weather app told the vehicles behind them when its wipers were on, drivers further down the road would have advance warning of rain. No weather satellite can give precise details about the specific road you're on, says Prasad. "All of a sudden you've given new life to wiper blades."

If you want to know how your engine is running, apps could display fuel pressure or the boost pressure of a turbo injection. With access to such parameters, apps could let drivers tweak their car's performance. While manufacturers tend to balance their cars between economy and performance, software could push it to one extreme or the other, giving the car owner a more efficient or faster vehicle than the one they bought.

It is unlikely that Ford would approve these kinds of apps - they might not be safe - and so car hackers might try to get around security measures. There are ways to do this that open up a car like a jailbroken iPhone. "Gone are the days when you have to connect wires together, you're now just talking to a computer," says Jay Abbott of Advanced Security Consulting in Peterborough, UK.

Abbott is a cybersecurity expert and car-modding enthusiast who enjoys tweaking a car's performance by customising its software. Most microcontrollers in modern cars use a protocol known as a CAN bus to communicate. Since this protocol is well understood, encryption can be bypassed with off-the-shelf tools such as a CAN bus analyser, commonly used to check your car's software for bugs....

-bth: How to hack into a car computer made easy.

Suicide bombing at U.S. embassy in Turkey kills at least 2

Turkey suicide bombing at U.S. embassy kills 2 - POLITICO.com

ANKARA, Turkey  — A suspected suicide bomber detonated an explosive device at the entrance of the U.S. Embassy in the Turkish capital on Friday and at least two people are dead, a police official said.

An Associated Press journalist saw a body in the street in front of an embassy side entrance. The bomb appeared to have exploded inside the security checkpoint at the entrance of the visa section of the embassy....

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Main Tuareg area

tuareg-map-2.png (PNG Image, 304 × 215 pixels)

70% of governments fail to protect against corruption in the defence sector - Transparency.org

Press releases - 70% of governments fail to protect against corruption in the defence sector

ANNEX 1: OVERALL RESULTS

The Index bands countries according to their level of risk of corruption. The risk of corruption is determined by the danger and extent of it occurring and by the frequency citizens may face it.

 

BAND A – Very Low Risk (2 COUNTRIES): Australia, Germany

BAND B – Low Risk (7 COUNTRIES): Austria, Norway, South Korea, Sweden, Taiwan, United Kingdom, United States

BAND C – Moderate Risk (16 COUNTRIES): Argentina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Poland, Slovakia, Spain

BAND D+ - High Risk (15 COUNTRIES): Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cyprus, India, Israel, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Mexico, Nepal, Serbia, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, UAE

BAND D- - High Risk (15 COUNTRIES) Bangladesh, Belarus, China, Ethiopia, Georgia, Ghana, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Pakistan, Palestine, Russia, Rwanda, Tanzania, Turkey

BAND E – Very High Risk (18 COUNTRIES): Afghanistan, Bahrain, Cote d'Ivoire, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Morocco, Nigeria, Oman, Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Tunisia, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Zimbabwe

BAND F – Critical Risk (9 COUNTRIES): Algeria, Angola, Cameroon, DRC, Egypt, Eritrea, Libya, Syria, Yemen

Not Even the Pentagon Bomb Squad Knows How Fast Insurgent IEDs Degrade - wired

Not Even the Pentagon Bomb Squad Knows How Fast Insurgent IEDs Degrade | Danger Room | Wired.com

... But those types of devices aren’t often seen in Afghanistan. There, the vast majority of bombs JIEDDO has discovered — some 97 percent — rely on homemade explosives for their explosive force. Sixty percent of that homemade explosive comes from ammonium nitrate derived from Pakistani fertilizer; much of the rest uses potassium chlorate. Ammonium nitrate will degrade based on environmental factors — most importantly, water in the air.

When humidity reaches 55 percent, ammonium nitrate will start absorbing moisture, starting a chemical degradation process. At 15 percent saturation, JIEDDO estimates, the ammonium nitrate probably won’t detonate; at 20 percent, it definitely won’t. “It just gets mushy, harder to work with,” says Jimmie Oxley, a professor of chemistry who focuses on explosives at the University of Rhode Island. (Potassium chlorate, not so much.)

Insurgents, however, have ways of mitigating that. Often the ammonium nitrate or potassium chlorate will be stored in plastic palm-oil jugs, which keeps the moisture out. In the jugs, “they’re pretty much impervious” to the elements, Fountain says. Even without them, the climate in which they’re produced tends not to break down the dangerous compounds. “In the dry, arid environment they’re manufactured in,” he continues, “they can last for a long time.”

Oxley notes that in lab conditions, ammonium nitrate is good for something like a decade. In the real world, “when you look at what [information] the suppliers of ammonium nitrate provide, they usually put a two-year shelf life on their products,” she says. Putting the explosive in plastic jugs, burying it in dry soil — all of that acts as a preservation agent for the bombs. “It’s safe to say they can last a year or two,” Oxley judges, and potassium chlorate-based bombs, which lack the same sensitivity to moisture, are probably good for longer.

At the same time, just because a bomb is capable of detonating doesn’t mean it will. And lots of things impact whether a bomb detonates (and degrades) besides the explosive used: its construction, its wiring, its detonation mechanisms. As befitting a bomb that costs, on average, $265 to construct, most improvised explosive devices fail. Between April 2011 and April 2012, they saw a 25 percent drop in effectiveness. And they get spotted: according to JIEDDO’s most recent data, U.S. troops encountered over 3,000 IEDs during the final three months of 2012, and safely cleared 69 percent of those they encountered in vehicles and 86 percent of those they encountered on foot.

At least some that failure rate can be attributed to the U.S.’ array of sensors and intelligence methods. But that’s about to drop off, as U.S. troops come home. Lt. Gen. James L. Terry, the day-to-day commander of the war, told Pentagon reporters on Wednesday he was concerned about Afghan troops’ relatively immature counter-IED technology....

UN nuclear watchdog backs Iran's denial of Fordow explosion

UN nuclear watchdog backs Iran's denial of Fordow explosion - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper

The United Nations atomic watchdog made clear on Tuesday it had seen no sign of any explosion at one of Iran's most sensitive nuclear plants, backing up Tehran's denial that such an incident had taken place last week....
bth: further indication that World News Daily as a reliable news source is full of shit.

2013 Sequestration Likely To Happen Despite Ominous GDP Report

2013 Sequestration Likely To Happen Despite Ominous GDP Report

WASHINGTON -- Lawmakers and economists urged Congress to reconsider the massive spending cuts set to begin in March in light of Wednesday's alarming news that the nation's gross domestic product shrank for the first time in more than three years. But in a testament to beltway inertia, Congress seemed more likely than not to hit the fiscal snooze button.

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) said Wednesday's report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis was further proof that implementing "big austerity measures now will hurt the recovery." But the ranking member of the House Budget Committee added that the findings may not be enough to persuade lawmakers to replace the looming sequester, or a decade's worth of automatic cuts to defense and domestic spending.

"The question is how far over the ledge do we go before people take action," Van Hollen said in an interview. He said he hoped sequestration wouldn't be triggered. "But that may be required to bring some sense to the process. If you look at this report, there is no doubt that the spending slowdown contributed to the contraction and that was before the sequester. That was just in anticipation to the sequester."...

bth: the impact is already devastating the smaller defense contractors

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Conrad Black to host talkshow on Canadian TV - Telegraph

Conrad Black to host talkshow on Canadian TV - Telegraph

"Lord Have Mercy, Black is Back!" shouted an advertisement for the one-hour newsmagazine talk show "The Zoomer." It will air on VisionTV and is aimed at older viewers.

Black returned to Canada in May 2012 after serving more than three years prison in the United States for fraud and obstruction of justice, convictions that completed a remarkable fall from grace for a man once courted by the rich and powerful.

At its peak Black's former newspaper group was one of the largest media empires in the world, with revenues in the billions of dollars and global daily circulation in the millions.

Its titles included The Daily Telegraph, the Chicago Sun-Times, Canada's National Post, and the Jerusalem Post....

bth: a criminal and propagandist that was greatly responsible for hyping the case for war with Iraq which cost our country dearly.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

New Foam to Save Lives on the Battlefield Read more: New Foam to Save Lives on the Battlefield - Popular Mechanics

New Foam to Save Lives on the Battlefield - Popular Mechanics

Text Size: A . A . A
When an injury causes severe internal bleeding, patients need to get to the operating table quickly to survive. But in a war zone, where explosions and shrapnel can cause some of the most traumatic of these injuries, medical attention is often more than an hour away. Medical researchers have been tinkering with numerous solutions to try to keep more injured soldiers alive; now scientists at Arsenal Medical, a private company based in Watertown, Mass., are developing a foam compound designed to stop the bleeding until the patient can get into surgery.

The treatment for severe abdominal bleeding, which just received a DARPA Phase II contract for $15.5 million, consists of injecting two liquids into the belly button. Upma Sharma, head of the research team, describes the double-barreled syringe as working like an epoxy gun: When the liquids combine, they form a polyurethane foam that expands and hardens. As the foam conforms to the patient's internal organs and presses against them, it slows the bleeding. Once the patient is hospitalized, a surgeon can remove the foam and operate....

Paul Ryan insists Republicans are ready to let the sequester happen - WaPo

 

Paul Ryan insists Republicans are ready to let the sequester happen

On Sunday morning, Rep. Paul Ryan reiterated a message that House Republicans have been trying to push since the fiscal cliff deal happened: The GOP is unafraid to let the sequester take effect.

REUTERS/Mike Segar

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.). REUTERS/Mike Sega.

“I think the sequester is going to happen,” Ryan said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“We think these sequesters will happen because the Democrats have opposed our efforts to replace those cuts with others–and they’ve offered no alternatives,” Ryan said.

Ryan’s comments reinforced House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) insistence that the sequester would be the biggest point of leverage for Republicans to extract the cuts that they want. And at least rhetorically speaking, other House GOP members have stepped into line. “I’m pretty sure it is going to happen now, and I would really like to see us fix the [continuing resolution]  problem,” House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) told Politico last week. “I guess the feeling is until everybody feels enough pain, we’re not going to do the things that we really need to do. And that scares me.”...

-bth: continued talk like this will devastate the economy between now and April.

Israel warns of possible pre-emptive chemical weapons strike in Syria - CBS

Israel warns of possible pre-emptive chemical weapons strike in Syria - CBS News

JERUSALEM Israel could launch a pre-emptive strike to stop Syria's chemical weapons from reaching Lebanon's Hezbollah or al Qaeda inspired groups, officials said Sunday.

 

The warning came as the military moved a rocket defense system to a main northern city, and Israel's premier warned of dangers from both Syria and Iran.

Israel has long expressed concerns that Syrian President Bashar Assad, clinging to power during a 22-month civil war, could lose control over his chemical weapons.

Vice Prime Minister Silvan Shalom said Sunday that Israel's top security officials held a special meeting last week to discuss Syria's chemical weapons arsenal. The fact of the meeting, held the morning after a national election, had not been made public before.

Shalom told the Army Radio station that the transfer of weapons to violent groups, particularly the Iranian-backed Lebanese Hezbollah, would be a game changer.

"It would be crossing a line that would demand a different approach, including even action," he said. Asked whether this might mean a pre-emptive attack, he said: "We will have to make the decisions."...

...