Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Away

Taking a break, will be back shortly.

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War

My Way News - Obama asks fresh war powers, says IS group 'going to lose'
My Way News reports: "Vowing that Islamic State forces are 'going to lose,' President Barack Obama urged Congress on Wednesday to authorize military action against terrorists who are cutting a swath across the Middle East. Yet he ruled out large-scale U.S. ground combat operations reminiscent of Iraq and Afghanistan."

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Friday, February 06, 2015

Wars & Rumors of War

My Way News - Islamic State says airstrike killed US hostage, US skeptical
My Way News reports: "Islamic State extremists claimed that an American woman held hostage by the group was killed Friday in a Jordanian airstrike in northern Syria, but the government of Jordan dismissed the statement as 'criminal propaganda' and the U.S. said it had not seen any evidence to corroborate the report."

My Way News - Putin, Ukraine leader to hold 4-way phone call on peace plan
My Way News reports: "Talks among the leaders of Russia, France and Germany on a peace initiative for Ukraine ended early Saturday with an announcement that Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart would discuss a proposal to end the fighting in a four-way telephone call this weekend. [...] The resurgent fighting has fueled fears the conflict is threatening Europe's overall security and has prompted the U.S. to consider giving lethal weapons to Ukraine, an option opposed by European nations."

My Way News - Jordan's king thrusts country to center of Islamic State war
My Way News reports: "King Abdullah II has thrust Jordan to the center of the war against the Islamic State group with his pledge of relentless retaliation for the killing of one of his pilots. [...] The military carried out airstrikes on Islamic State weapons depots and training sites on Thursday and Friday."

Reuters - Iran is using Israel to distract from its real aims in the Persian Gulf
Reuters reports: "This Iranian threat is as real and serious to the Arab Gulf states — and to the flow of petroleum exports to the global economy — as its nuclear threat. It is the reason why Saudi Arabia and the other Arab Gulf states — as well as the United States, Britain, and France — have built up their naval, air, mine warfare, and missile forces in the Gulf."

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Thursday, February 05, 2015

War and Rumors of War

My Way News - Jordan launches new airstrikes after vowing harsh war on IS
My Way News reports: "Dozens of Jordanian fighter jets bombed Islamic State training centers and weapons storage sites Thursday, intensifying attacks after the militants burned to death a captured Jordanian pilot. As part of the new campaign, Jordan is also attacking targets in Iraq, said Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh. Up to now, Jordan had struck IS targets in Syria, but not Iraq, as part of a U.S.-led military coalition."

My Way News - French, German leaders push new peace plan for east Ukraine
My Way News reports: "The trip by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande, who will follow by meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday in Moscow, came as concerns rose about whether the U.S. would grant lethal aid to Ukraine and as NATO formed a quick-reaction force of 5,000 soldiers in response to Russia's increased military muscle-flexing. [...] More than 5,300 people have been killed since the fighting started in April."

My Way News - NATO beefs up response force to face Russia, Islamic threats
My Way News reports: "NATO defense ministers agreed Thursday to more than double the size of the alliance's Response Force and create a new quick-reaction force of 5,000 troops to meet simultaneous challenges from Russia and Islamic extremists. [...] NATO's total Response Force was increased from 13,000 to 30,000 troops and its new rapid reaction force should start to deploy within 48 hours, Stoltenberg said."

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Wednesday, February 04, 2015

War

My Way News - Jordan says IS can be defeated; uproar over burn video
My Way News reports:  "Jordan called Wednesday for a decisive battle against the Islamic State group, declaring "this evil can and should be defeated," after the militants burned a Jordanian pilot to death in a cage and gleefully broadcast the horrific images on outdoor screens in their stronghold."

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Tuesday, February 03, 2015

Rumors of War - Persia

My Way News - AP Exclusive: US, Iran discussing nuclear talks compromise
My Way News reports: "With time for negotiations running short, the U.S and Iran are discussing a compromise that would let Iran keep much of its uranium-enriching technology but reduce its potential to make nuclear weapons, two diplomats tell The Associated Press. [...] Experts warn that any reduction in centrifuge efficiency is reversible more quickly than a straight decrease in the number of machines, an argument that could be seized upon by powerful critics of the talks in the U.S. Congress."

Comment: Could it be that Obama needs a deal more than Iran needs to compromise? 

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Monday, February 02, 2015

Temple Mount

My Way News - Jordan says its ambassador will return to Israel after spat
My Way News reports: "A spokesman for Jordan's government says its ambassador will return to Israel after he was pulled over growing confrontations at a hilltop site in Jerusalem holy to both Jews and Muslims. Mohammad al-Momani told journalists Monday that the ambassador would return to Tel Aviv. The trapezoid-shaped compound, known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as the Temple Mount, is at the heart of the territorial and religious conflict between Israel and its Arab neighbors."

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Saturday, January 31, 2015

War

My Way News - Japan outraged as video purportedly shows hostage beheaded
My Way News reports: "Japan and other nations condemned with outrage and horror on Sunday the beheading purportedly by the Islamic State group of Kenji Goto, a journalist who sought through his coverage of Syria to convey the plight of refugees, children and other victims of war."

My Way News - Islamic State fighters admit defeat in Syrian town of Kobani
My Way News reports: "The Islamic State group has acknowledged for the first time that its fighters have been defeated in the Syrian town of Kobani and vowed to attack the town again. [...] The failure to capture and hold Kobani was a major blow to the extremists. Their hopes for an easy victory dissolved into a costly siege under withering airstrikes by coalition forces and an assault by Kurdish militiamen."

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Mark of the Beast

The Telegraph - An office block in Sweden is micro-chipping its employees
The Telegraph reports: "Epicenter, a new hi-tech office block in Sweden, is ditching swipe cards and implanting chips in its employees. People working at Epicenter, a new hi-tech office block in Sweden, simply have to hold their hands against the front door to gain entry. They can also wave their hand to operate the photocopier, the BBC's Rory Cellan-Jones reports. In time, they will also be able to pay for coffee and sandwiches in the cafe with a touch of a hand. It's because some employees have a tiny RFID (radio-frequency identification) chip, about the size of a grain of rice, implanted. A handful of staff currently have the chip, but soon others among the 400 workers will be given the chance."

Comment: "The Borg? Sounds Swedish." But seriously, it's an interesting development that may or may not be MOTB related and although I can't see this becoming a trend, it's worth keeping an eye on. 

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Friday, January 30, 2015

Rumors of War - Persia

My Way News - Hezbollah warns Israel it won't tolerate more attacks
My Way News reports: "The leader of the militant Hezbollah group said Friday that this week's deadly cross-border attack on Israeli soldiers was a message that it will no longer tolerate any Israeli attacks against its members. [...] The Hezbollah threat comes as the group, which has an arsenal of tens of thousands of missiles and rockets, is currently preoccupied with the war in neighboring Syria — where it is aiding Syrian President Assad's forces."

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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Rumors of War - Persia

My Way News - Hezbollah fires missile salvo, killing 2 Israeli soldiers
My Way News reports: "The Lebanese militant Hezbollah group fired a salvo of missiles at an Israeli military convoy in a disputed border area Wednesday, killing two soldiers and triggering deadly clashes that marked the most serious escalation since the sides' 2006 war. [...] Netanyahu said that Iran, through Hezbollah, was working to establish a base in southern Syria from which to launch attacks against Israel."

Comment: While our American media remains focused on the weather (!) tensions are increasing in the Middle East. 

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