Humint Events Online: July 2015

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Shameful: Texas Runs Concentration Camps for Immigrants

"Deplorable": Federal Judge Condemns For-Profit Texas Detention Centers for Immigrant Families:
REP. JUDY CHU: I was one of the eight who visited the Karnes and Dilley detention center. And when I saw the Dilley detention center, I was so shocked at how isolated and barren it was. The first thing I thought was that they looked so much like the Japanese-American internment camps of World War II. I saw the sterile barracks, the muddy dirt pathways, the mass institutionalized cafeteria, and the guards everywhere. And I was shocked and so very moved by the desperate pleas of hundreds of mothers who came out to say, "Release me, I am not a criminal," and who scratched out picket signs that were written on their pillowcases and bedsheets.
I also remembered how the Japanese-American internment camps were pitched the American public as though the federal government was doing this for the safety of Japanese Americans. A similar argument has been made in the government’s case for detaining families, mainly from Central America fleeing unspeakable violence. The Department of Homeland Security repeatedly justified detaining families for deterrence reasons, to send a message that others weren’t welcome. Well, after much pressure and a federal court ruling that such a policy was unconstitutional, I am happy to say that DHS has finally reversed course and will no longer be using detention in that way. And just like we have to call the Japanese-American internment camps for what it was—a prison for people who were not criminals—we have to call the Karnes and Dilley detention center what they really are: prisons for people who are not criminals.
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Tuesday, July 28, 2015


July 28, 2015 - German scientists have confirmed that an Electromagnetic Propulsion Engine, claimed by some to be 'impossible', actually works. The EM Drive breaks the conservation of momentum law of physics, which is why it was originally widely ridiculed by the scientific community. However after repeated testing, it appears that the engine is actually producing thrust. 
Claims earlier in the year that it was creating a warp field have now been refuted. It is propelled forward by microwaves bouncing around inside a closed chamber. It will supposedly be able to get us to Mars in just 70 days, without using expensive rocket fuel.   
Martin Tajmar, the German scientist who has been independently testing the EM Drive, has a history of debunking experimental propulsion systems. So far, the drive appears to work, even in a vacuum. More testing is required to examine exactly how it works, and whether it is viable for use. If it does end up being used, it could spark new space exploration missions to Pluto, where New Horizons recently found flowing ice. 
Over the past year, there's been a whole lot of excitement about the electromagnetic propulsion drive, or EM Drive - a scientifically impossible engine that's defied pretty much everyone's expectations by continuing to stand up to experimental scrutiny. The drive is so exciting because it produces huge amounts of propulsion that could theoretically blast us to Mars in just 70 days, without the need for heavy and expensive rocket fuel. 
Instead, it's apparently propelled forward by microwaves bouncing back and forth inside an enclosed chamber, and this is what makes the drive so powerful, and at the same time so controversial. As efficient as this type of propulsion may sound, it defies one of the fundamental concepts of physics - the conservation of momentum, which states that for something to be propelled forward, some kind of propellant needs to be pushed out in the opposite direction. 
For that reason, the drive was widely laughed at and ignored when it was invented by English researcher Roger Shawyer in the early 2000s. But a few years later, a team of Chinese scientists decided to build their own version, and to everyone's surprise, it actually worked. Then an American inventor did the same, and convinced NASA's Eagleworks Laboratories, headed up by Harold 'Sonny' White, to test it. 
The real excitement began when those Eagleworks researchers admitted back in March that, despite more than a year of trying to poke holes in the EM Drive, it just kept on working - even inside a vacuum. This debunked some of their most common theories about what might be causing the anomaly. Now Martin Tajmar, a professor and chair for Space Systems at Dresden University of Technology in Germany, has played around with his own EM Drive, and has once again shown that it produces thrust - albeit for reasons he can't explain. Tajmar presented his results at the 2015 American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics' Propulsion and Energy Forum and Exposition in Florida on 27 July, and you can read his paper here. He has a long history of experimentally testing (and debunking) breakthrough propulsion systems, so his results are a pretty big deal for those looking for outside verification of the EM Drive. 
To top it off, his system produced a similar amount of thrust as was originally predicted by Shawyer, which is several thousand times greater than a standard photon rocket. "Our test campaign cannot confirm or refute the claims of the EM Drive but intends to independently assess possible side-effects in the measurements [sic] methods used so far," Tajmar and graduate student Georg Fiedler write in their conference abstract. "Nevertheless, we do observe thrust close to the actual predictions after eliminating many possible error sources that should warrant further investigation into the phenomena." So where does all of this leave us with the EM Drive? While it's fun to speculate about just how revolutionary it could be for humanity, what we really need now are results published in a peer-reviewed journal - which is something that Shawyer claims he is just a few months away from doing, as David Hambling reports for Wired.
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Fake Stephen Hawking Wants to Search for Alien Life in the Universe

What a dumb scam:
Stephen Hawking launches $100m search for alien life beyond solar system 
Astronomers are to embark on the most intensive search for alien life yet by listening out for potential radio signals coming from advanced civilisations far beyond the solar system. Leading researchers have secured time on two of the world’s most powerful telescopes in the US and Australia to scan the Milky Way and neighbouring galaxies for radio emissions that betray the existence of life elsewhere. 
The search will be 50 times more sensitive, and cover 10 times more sky, than previous hunts for alien life. The Green Bank Observatory in West Virginia, the largest steerable telescope on the planet, and the Parkes Observatory in New South Wales, are contracted to lead the unprecedented search that will start in January 2016. In tandem, the Lick Observatory in California will perform the most comprehensive search for optical laser transmissions beamed from other planets. 
Operators have signed agreements that hand the scientists thousands of hours of telescope time per year to eavesdrop on planets that orbit the million stars closest to Earth and the 100 nearest galaxies. The telescopes will scan the centre of the Milky Way and the entire length of the galactic plane. The Breakthrough Listen launch at the Royal Society. The project will be the most comprehensive search for radio and optical signals coming from intelligent life beyond the solar system. 
Launched on Monday at the Royal Society in London, with the Cambridge cosmologist Stephen Hawking, the Breakthrough Listen project has some of the world’s leading experts at the helm. Among them are Lord Martin Rees, the astronomer royal, Geoff Marcy, who has discovered more planets beyond the solar system than anyone, and the veteran US astronomer Frank Drake, a pioneer in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (Seti). 
Stephen Hawking said the effort was “critically important” and raised hopes for answering the question of whether humanity has company in the universe. “It’s time to commit to finding the answer, to search for life beyond Earth,” he said. “Mankind has a deep need to explore, to learn, to know. We also happen to be sociable creatures. It is important for us to know if we are alone in the dark.”

Clearly, it would be easy to find alien life here, if people really wanted to find it. So this is just some way to funnel money into astronomy and physics, I suppose.
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Ray Stanford

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

"WTC nuclear demolition man with construction helmet in WTC-7 lobby"

This is really freaking weird:

Secret Service -- OST = Office of Secure Transport

Since the recent release of the NIST FOIA, this short clip reveals a person of questionable presence. Who is he? Secret Service Special Agent Bennette who is acting as a liaison of sorts for the Tower 7 lobby after Tower 2 has come down, but when asked his title, he states O.S.T.
Quick search of OST, (Office of Secure Transportation) reveals an arm of the Department of Energy responsible for the transportation and security of nuclear and, or "related" materials...
For further reference see their site:
Not some group that changes light bulbs in Federal Buildings...
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"New" Proof of WTC6 Demolition

Wow, this is pretty much a slam dunk proof of some sort of bomb going off in WTC6.

I think I had seen it a long time back, but it never really sunk in before.

This is the key:

This was clearly before WTC1 went down. And even if we assume that the smoke is from WTC2, that tower was too far from WTC6 to do that kind of damage.

There is more evidence for early WTC6 damage described here.

Now one odd thing is there seems to be some WTC7-like debris in the street, near the hole. Remember how WTC7 had that odd straight gash down its front?

This fits two other things:
-- Barry Jennings' story of WTC7 blowing up before the WTC towers went down
-- EMT Patricia Ondrovic's story of flashes in WTC6 before the towers went down.

What's really needed is the original photo here-- can't 
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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The Eurozone = The New German Empire

And they are still nasty even if they don't slaughter people:
The flag of Europe still has twelve stars on it, and organizations with names like Eurogroup and European Commission and European Council still persist. But despite the unfortunate historical overtones, in order to be accurate we need to call the governing body in Europe the German Empire, after the events of this weekend. And the thing about empires is that they end sooner or later, because human beings don’t much like to be controlled by an overlord they never elected or endorsed.

The end of the German Empire will not take place today. Greece folded, giving up their sovereignty and agreeing to all the creditors’ demands, even to sell off national assets, without achieving anything more than a vague promise of debt relief in return. They decided to accept the devil they knew – crushing austerity, a worse package than what was on the table just weeks ago – rather than the devil they didn’t – the Grexit.

But that’s only the end of the story if you think Greece will meet the punitive objectives laid out in the surrender document, which look like the terms you impose on a country that lost a war. And even if they did manage to meet those terms, you would have to believe that austerity would generate economic growth to enable Greece to pay its debts back at some future stage. In this sense, it was a delay of the final outcome.

Far more important than the details of the Greek occupation – you can read the gory details here – is the manner in which it was employed. The German consuls were as vindictive as possible, slowly and deliberately grinding down the Greek economy, carpet-bombing the political opposition, and openly threatening expulsion from the European monetary union as punishment. The European Central Bank, Germany’s weapon of choice, supported the most crass form of economic bullying to stifle dissent that I’ve ever seen. The primary responsibility of a central bank is to manage the money supply in the countries it is associated with. The ECB did that by cutting off the money supply to Greece, no different than denying food to refugees. In fact, it’s very precisely the same, given the shortages of basic needs resulting from Greek importers having no way to ensure payment for goods.

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Greece-- #ThisIsaCoup

Germany is up to some old obnoxious tricks in what it is doing to Greece.

Good post at Hullaballoo (excerpts):

As details slipped out last night that Greece would be required to "surrender fiscal sovereignty" to avoid fiscal collapse, the twitter hashtag #ThisIsACoup exploded globally in a sign of protest and solidarity with Greece:
The draconian list of demands eurozone leaders handed to the Greek government in return for a European bailout has inspired a social media backlash against Germany and its hawkish finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble.
"There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword. The other is by debt." - John Adams (1735-1826)
Stripping a country of its assets to sell them to financial industry = modern colonialism.
Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis plans to publish an article Thursday in Die Zeit, reports Business Insider, that gives his view of the negotiations' backstory:
"Five months of intense negotiations between Greece and the Eurogroup never had a chance of success," Varoufakis writes.
"Condemned to lead to impasse, their purpose was to pave the ground for what [German finance minister] Dr [Wolfgang] Schäuble had decided was 'optimal' well before our government was even elected: That Greece should be eased out of the Eurozone in order to discipline member-states resisting his very specific plan for re-structuring the Eurozone."
Varoufakis adds that, "This is no theory" because he says Schäuble told him this was the plan.
Varoufakis wrote in the Guardian on Friday that the Schäuble's plan all along was "to put the fear of God into the French." 
In the Eurozone, people are pawns. Democracy is a sham. Here endeth the lesson.

French liberal economist Thomas Piketty has some choice words for Germany on this deal.

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Bernie Sanders

It's no secret that I am politically liberal, and in the past few years I have downplayed justice for deep conspiracy crimes to work towards social justice and world peace-- more traditional liberal activities and less controversial forms of activism. In large part, this is because conspiracy matters still face a massive wall that our society can't seem to overcome-- and at the same time, we are making real progress in social awareness and progress, I think largely thanks to the internet and social media. So I have not changed my views on 9/11 or deep politics, but I have refocused my energies slightly (my energies such as they are).

So clearly Bernie Sanders has created a massive amount of excitement in the political world (for instance)-- like nothing seen for a long time if ever. There's no doubt his basic political views align well with mine, and obviously he is a huge improvement over Hillary and the vast array of GOP idiots.

He's not perfect by any means, and if elected president, he's not likely going to give us breakthroughs on 9/11 or other deep conspiracies. But in my opinion, his basic sensibilities are in the right place for peace and social justice and economic justice. His policy ideas actually align very well with what most Americans want, and he is not even a vocal proponent of gun control. He's brutally honest about many issues and seems remarkably uncorrupted. Coming in from outside of the Democratic party to run as a Democrat is a good thing too, and it's very wise move for him and for Democrats.

So, basically, this is a long post saying that for now, I'm totally on board with Bernie Sanders for president.

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Saturday, July 11, 2015

33 of the Day-- the CDC

There are more in the whole piece but there are three key threes here:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — which has publicly disclosed three serious laboratory accidents during the past year involving Ebola, anthrax and a deadly strain of bird flu — says it will take three more years before it will release copies of all incident reports for the agency's labs in Atlanta and Fort Collins, Colo. 
On May 28, USA TODAY published a series of reports documenting hundreds of lab incidents at public and private research facilities nationwide. The investigation noted that many labs, including the CDC, have fought to keep records secret about incidents and regulatory actions. For nearly three years, USA TODAY has been unable to obtain other records about safety and security issues at CDC labs in Atlanta. In June 2012 — after receiving leaked internal agency records — USA TODAY reported that CDC's labs in Atlanta had experienced significant failures of laboratory airflow systems used to contain pathogens, as well as repeated security lapses in areas where dangerous viruses and bacteria are kept.  (snip)
 I always found it interesting that the zip code for the CDC is 30333.
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Terrorist Bankers

Six staff from Britain's biggest bank have been sacked after a video appeared online showing them taking part in a mock Islamic State style killing. 
The footage is believed to have been taken during a team-building day and showed the workers dressed in overalls and balaclavas at a go-karting centre. They were seen staging a beheading scene with five of them laughing and joking as a colleague in an orange jumpsuit knelt at their feet. One clutched a coat hanger, apparently as a fake knife, while another held the man in the jumpsuit by the shoulders. 
According to The Sun newspaper a worker shouted "Allahu Akbar" - meaning God is greatest in Arabic. An HSBC spokesman said: "We do not tolerate inappropriate behaviour. "As soon as The Sun brought this video to our attention we took the decision to sack the individuals involved. 
"This is an abhorrent video and HSBC would like to apologise for any offence caused."
It's pretty telling that this came from HSBC, which has an appalling record of wrong-doing:
The banking giant HSBC has escaped indictment for laundering billions of dollars for Mexican drug cartels and groups linked to al-Qaeda. Despite evidence of wrongdoing, the U.S. Department of Justice has allowed the bank to avoid prosecution and pay a $1.9 billion fine. No top HSBC officials will face charges, either. 
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Friday, July 10, 2015

An Endless Parade of Wankers

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Sunday, July 05, 2015

The Lincoln Assasination Was Faked

A somewhat long but reasonably convincing case for fakery by Miles Mathis. One thing I like a lot about Mathis is he lays his arguments out very logically and coherently. He doesn't beat around the bush much at all, and at the same time he also does a good job of painting the bigger picture.

Whereas Dave McGowan did a whole series of essays about funny business in the Lincoln assassination, but they really meandered and I couldn't get very interested in them. I read over the last one he published (#11) and he still didn't seem to get to a point.

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Saturday, July 04, 2015

Happy Independence Day

I'm declaring independence from the evil PTB and the military industrial complex.

In principle, at least.

But truly:

The age of American exceptionalism is long over.
Endless warfare. Extrajudicial killings. Broken infrastructure. They all add up to a superpower in steep decline.
The rise and fall of great powers and their imperial domains has been a central fact of history for centuries. It’s been a sensible, repeatedly validated framework for thinking about the fate of the planet. So it’s hardly surprising, when faced with a country once regularly labeled the “sole superpower,” “the last superpower,” or even the global “hyperpower” and now, curiously, called nothing whatsoever, that the “decline” question should come up. Is the U.S. or isn’t it? Might it or might it not now be on the downhill side of imperial greatness?
Take a slow train — that is, any train — anywhere in America, as I did recently in the northeast, and then take a high-speed train anywhere else on Earth, as I also did recently, and it’s not hard to imagine the U.S. in decline. The greatest power in history, the “unipolar power,” can’t build a single mile of high-speed rail? Really? And its Congress is now mired in an argument about whether funds can even be raised to keep America’s highways more or less pothole-free.
Sometimes, I imagine myself talking to my long-dead parents because I know how such things would have astonished two people who lived through the Great Depression, World War II, and a can-do post-war era in which the staggering wealth and power of this country were indisputable. What if I could tell them how the crucial infrastructure of such a still-wealthy nation — bridges, pipelines, roads, and the like — is now grossly underfunded, in an increasing state of disrepair, and beginning to crumble? That would definitely shock them. And what would they think upon learning that, with the Soviet Union a quarter-century in the trash bin of history, the U.S., alone in triumph, has been incapable of applying its overwhelming military and economic power effectively? I’m sure they would be dumbstruck to discover that, since the moment the Soviet Union imploded, the U.S. has been at war continuously with another country (three conflicts and endless strife); that I was talking about, of all places, Iraq; and that the mission there was never faintly accomplished. How improbable is that?
And what would they think if I mentioned that the other great conflicts of the post-Cold-War era were with Afghanistan (two wars with a decade off in-between) and the relatively small groups of non-state actors we now call terrorists? And how would they react on discovering that the results were: failure in Iraq, failure in Afghanistan, and the proliferation of terror groups across much of the Greater Middle East (including the establishment of an actual terror caliphate) and increasing parts of Africa? They would, I think, conclude that the U.S. was over the hill and set on the sort of decline that, sooner or later, has been the fate of every great power. And what if I told them that, in this new century, not a single action of the military that U.S. presidents now call “the finest fighting force the world has ever known” has, in the end, been anything but a dismal failure? Or that presidents, presidential candidates, and politicians in Washington are required to insist on something no one would have had to say in their day: that the United States is both an “exceptional” and an “indispensible” nation? Or that they would also have to endlessly thank our troops (as would the citizenry) for… well… never success, but just being there and getting maimed, physically or mentally, or dying while we went about our lives? Or that those soldiers must always be referred to as “heroes.”

There really is no bullshit quite like patriotic military bullshit and particularly American exceptionalism.

But we knew that, right?

And 9/11 was just another amazingly cruel and awful aspect of this bullshit.
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Friday, July 03, 2015

Israel's Horrific Bombing Spree in Gaza

Israel killed and injured more civilians with explosive weapons than any other state in the world in 2014 due to its military assault on Gaza. This is according to a new report by Action on Armed Violence (AOAV), an organization that tracks the global impact of explosive weapons on civilians.
The report defines explosive weapons as “munitions such as air-dropped bombs, mortars, improvised explosive devices and artillery shells” which cause “deaths, injuries and damage by projecting explosive blast, heat and often fragmentation around a point of detonation.”

While both state and non-state groups contributed to civilian casualties in 2014, states were responsible for 28 percent of civilian injuries and deaths, a sharp 17 percent rise from the previous year. This was due in large part to Israel’s military assault on Gaza, which accounted for 44 percent of all explosive violence in 2014.

Bolstering previous human rights assessments that have accused Israel of war crimes, the AOAV report sheds further light on the degree of firepower the residents of Gaza were subjected to last summer.

Dubbed Operation Protective Edge, Israel’s 51-day bombing campaign killed 2,251 Palestinians and injured another 11,000, according to UN figures. The vast majority of those killed (1,462) were civilians, including 551 children, making Gaza the third most dangerous place in the world to be a civilian in 2014, according to AOAV.

As a result, Palestinians in Gaza made up 43 percent of global civilian casualties from artillery shelling, 35 percent of civilian casualties from aerial bombings and 40 percent of worldwide child casualties from explosive violence in 2014.

After the dust settled, bomb disposal experts estimated that Israel dropped the equivalent of six atomic bombs on Gaza.

Of course, Israel is a rogue state that the US is only too happy to supply with money and weapons.

Shit is fucked up and bullshit. Fuck the military industrial complex.
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Al-CIA-duh Forever

Some nice WaPo propaganda from a little while back:

Bin Laden’s ambitious final plans
By David Ignatius Opinion writer May5
In the months before his death in May 2011, Osama bin Laden was discussing new gambits — from a truce with Pakistan to opportunistic alliances with jihadist groups spawned by the Arab Spring — so that he could focus on tipping what he called “the balance of fear” with his main enemy, the United States.
This picture of a cagey, quirky bin Laden, directing a terrorist “great game” from his secret lair in Abbottabad, Pakistan, emerges in eight documents released a few months ago. They were declassified to bolster the U.S. government’s case against a Pakistani named Abid Naseer but received scant media attention. Naseer was convicted in March for his role in an alleged al-Qaeda plot to bomb the New York subway. The documents deserve a closer look.
The new bin Laden files show that he recognized the opportunities that Arab upheaval offered for al-Qaeda and was moving to exploit them. Al-Qaeda’s main leadership had been rocked by America’s drone war, but the group still had big ambitions, even at a time when U.S. officials said it was buckling.
The bin Laden of these documents is ruminating about big strategic ideas but also micromanaging personnel decisions and counterespionage tactics. In one passage, he admonishes his deputy, Atiyah Abd al-Rahman, to pay more attention to climate change that might affect Somalia, a key recruiting area; in another, he proposes sending al-Qaeda
rrecruits to universities to master advanced technologies that could benefit the terror group.
Bin Laden speaks in the aristocratic voice of a terrorist-intellectual, a Muslim version of the 19th-century anarchist Mikhail Bakunin. In one paragraph of a message to Rahman, he ominously presses for news about “a big operation inside America.” In the next paragraph, he asks blithely: “If you have any brother who is knowledgeable about poetry, please let us know about it.”
Bin Laden and his lieutenants believed in early 2011 that the world was moving their way, despite the harassment of drone attacks. Rahman explained: “We are currently following the Arab revolutions and the changes taking place in Arab countries.” He mentioned Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Yemen and Syria, and said, “In general, we think these changes are sweeping, and there is good in them, God willing.”

Rahman urged his boss to send a message about “the demise of these tyrants,” expressing solidarity with the protesters. “You could support the revolutions against oppression, corruption, criminality, and tyranny.” He explained that he had sent al-Qaeda operatives to Libya, where there was “an active Jihadist Islamic renaissance underway.” That jihadist presence helped drive the deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi the next year.
Even as bin Laden was seeking to capitalize on the Arab upheaval, he was considering local truces with Pakistan and among feuding factions in North Africa. Rahman said his operatives had conveyed this stand-down message to the Pakistani government, including contact with former intelligence chief Hamid Gul, and was exchanging messages with a senior Taliban official named Tayeb Agha (who would later meet secretly with the United States).
Rahman succinctly summarized the truce offer to Pakistan: “You became part of the battle when you sided with the Americans. If you were to leave us and our affairs alone, we would leave you alone.” Bin Laden concurred, noting: “We would like to neutralize whomever we possibly can during our war with our bigger enemy, America.”
At that time, the United States was beginning secret peace feelers with the Taliban. Gul allegedly told his al-Qaeda contacts: “We are putting pressure on them [America] to negotiate with al-Qaeda .    .    . [and] that negotiating with the Taliban separate from al-Qaeda is pointless.”
The most tantalizing nugget in these documents is Rahman’s claim that the British, too, were exploring a separate peace. He told bin Laden that according to Libyan operatives in Britain, “British intelligence spoke to them .    .    . [to] find out what they [al-Qaeda] thought of the following idea: England is ready to leave Afghanistan if al-Qaeda would explicitly commit to not moving against England or her interests.” A spokesman for the British Embassy in Washington said “the claims are completely untrue.”
Hunkered down in Abbottabad, bin Laden was utterly focused on striking the United States “in its heartland.” He noted that the slow bleed wasn’t working: Vietnam had been far more costly to America than Afghanistan; al-Qaeda’s allies would have to kill 100 times more people to equal the Vietnam death toll.
What was needed, he said a few weeks before his death, was another “large operation inside America [that] affects the security and nerves of 300 million Americans.” Al-Qaeda and its offshoots haven’t achieved that goal yet.

Wow, their patsy really concocted an elaborate story here, but the bottom line is clear-- BE VERY AFRAID!

But, now, guess who's our ally against the dread ISIS?

Why We Need al-Qaeda

Could the group long considered the most lethal terrorist organization in the
 world be the best option left in the Middle East for 
the US and its allies?

In Washington and other Western capitals there is rampant confusion
 about the status and future of al-Qaeda. Some Western diplomats and 
commentators claim that al-Qaeda has been largely surpassed by the much more 
popular and brutal ISIS. Others insist that it is expanding in Syria and Yemen,
 remains strong in Pakistan and Afghanistan where its present leadership is based,
 and continues to pose the most significant terrorist threat to the West.

Meanwhile, events in the Middle East suggest growing contradictions in Western 
policy. In Syria, the United States has been bombing Jabhat al-Nusra,
 al-Qaeda’s local affiliate, alongside ISIS. But members of the US-led
 coalition against ISIS, including Turkey and Saudi Arabia, are actively 
supporting al-Nusra with arms and money. In Yemen, the US has pursued a
 years-long drone campaign against al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), a campaign that has included, most recently, the reported killing on Friday of AQAP leader Nasir al-Wuhayshi. But 
much of the Arab world is now essentially siding with AQAP in a Saudi-led war
 against Houthi rebels in that country. And while ISIS commands overwhelming
 attention for its ability to gain and hold territory and draw thousands of
 Western recruits, there has been little scrutiny of the dramatic effect it has 
had on al-Qaeda itself.

The truth is that al-Qaeda has evolved in profound ways since the death 
of Osama bin Laden and the emergence of ISIS. Despite a 
concerted campaign against it by the US and its coalition of more than sixty countries, ISIS can now claim to have ground forces in 
more than a dozen countries stretching from Tunisia to Central Asia and 
Pakistan, and it is implementing a state-building project—the 
Caliphate—that al-Qaeda could only dream of. The most dangerous 
long-term consequence of ISIS’s growth is the unleashing of a general war
 between Sunni and Shia that could divide the Muslim world for decades.

Al-Qaeda, on the other hand, is much
 depleted. However, it still has a major presence in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen 
through its affiliates, and it continues to inspire Afghan, Central Asian, and 
Pakistani militants, who provide the group with sanctuaries and manpower in 
order to keep its leadership under Ayman al-Zawahiri alive. It also has 
increasingly set itself apart from ISIS in strategy and aims on battlefields in 
both Syria and Yemen. So the 
question has become urgent: if al-Qaeda is changing, what is it 
changing to? Is it for the better or the worse? And what part might it have in 
the crucial confrontation with ISIS?
The West must recognize that the ground is shifting quickly across the region 
and the Arab Spring is now on the verge of turning into an Islamic 
fundamentalist winter, whether we like it or not. The US has paid a bitter price 
for declining to back the Arab states in removing Assad four years ago when there was a viable moderate opposition. In the
 months ahead, we should not be surprised if formal talks between al-Qaeda and
 these Arab states begin. The only one not at the table could be the
 United States. 


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The Roswell Movie

From 1994 but just heard about this recently. Surprisingly good, seems fairly accurate.

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