A resource for historians and journalists, since 2004

Maravot News of the World
11:05 AM
- San Francisco
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
(last post

Search Engines & Filters

Trends, Iraq Casualties

Metric Conversion

kilometer: 0.6214 mile
msedeter: 39.37 inches
centimetre: 0.3937 inch
millimetre: 0.03937 inch
foot: 30.48 cm
Br. stone: 14 pounds
kilogram: 2.2046 pounds
litre: 1.0567 US quarts
hectare: 2.471 acres
– 1 djerib (Turkey)
– 1 jerib (Iran)
– 1 gong qing (China)
0° Celcius: = 32° F

Chart showing National Debt & Annual Deficits with Presidents. Democrat administrations are blue, Republican in Red. Click chart for larger image. and discussion. For old Maravot chart click here, News Trends.html.

2009 update (3.05.09)

Western News
Worth frequent visits
Best nose for news

Village Voice
Newsweek Magazine
Time Magazine
The New Yorker magazine
Vanity Fair
Aviation Week
Arch. & Prehistory news
New Scientist

Aral Sea Disaster
oilonline.cHoly Ghosom
information please
DOD News
Le Monde.fr (
in French)
liberation.fr (
in French)
lefigaro.fr (
in French)
Spiegel Online
La Repubblica.It
PeaceReporter.net (Italy)
expatica.com (Spain)
standartnews.com (Bulgaria)
NIS News (Holland)
BBC News
Sky News (London)


The Independent
Belfast Telegraph
cnews.canoe.ca (Canada)
National Public Radio

New York Times.com
Washington Post
Washington Times
ABC News

Fox News


CBS News
WWLTV – New Orleans
Detroit Free Press (Freep)
LA Times

San Francisco Chronicle
El Paso Times (Texas-Mexico)
Banderas News (Mexico)

Financial Times
ino.com (World Indices)
Radio Free Europe
Radio News America
Democracy Now, radio & TV
The Guardian, Nigeria
Business Day (S. Africa)



International Agencies – News

Osama bin Laden fatwas.
This monster's own words will
lead to his destruction
Definition of fatwa (fatwah)
Maravot News Comment




August 1996

Maps of interest
Click on maps for larger image
Russia, Belarus & neighbors
Israel-Iraq & neighbors
Iran-Afghanistan-Pak.-India; Strait of Hormuz oil lane Iran threatens to block
Kazakhstan & neighbors

Historical map of Israel. Figure 2 shows the area allocated to
Israel by the UN in 1948. Compare to Israel' s map below of its security wall.

Israel's Security Fence.

Middle East Watch

Russia & Ukraine Watch

East Asia Watch

Relevant Works by Mel

News Headlines & Trends

10.26.10 Afghanistan, Iraq among world's most corrupt nations, says NGO

October 26 - Iraq and Afghanistan came near the top of a global list of perceived corruption published by watchdog Transparency International (TI), despite efforts to stamp out graft in the war-torn nations. Nearly three-quarters of the 178 countries in TI's annual survey scored worse than average on the scale, which ranges from zero (perceived to be highly corrupt) to 10 (perceived to have low levels of corruption). "The results indicate a serious corruption problem," the Berlin-based anti-sleaze body said. "Allowing corruption to continue is unacceptable. Too many poor and vulnerable people continue to suffer its consequences around the world," said TI's president Huguette Labelle. "There should be nowhere to hide for the corrupt or their money."

Iraq was fourth from the top of the most corrupt ranking, Burma shared second place with Afghanistan and lawless Somalia was considered the world's most corrupt country, with a score of 1.1. At the other end of the scale, Denmark, New Zealand and Singapore were seen as the nations least blighted by corruption, scoring 9.3 points. They were followed by Finland, Sweden, Canada and the Netherlands.

10.26.10 China unveils Shanghai-Hangzhou high-speed railway; eyes network extension

SHANGHAI/HANGZHOU, October 26 - High-speed trains began traveling between the eastern Chinese cities of Shanghai and Hangzhou Tuesday morning, the latest milestone in China's effort to build the world's fastest rail network. Two bullet trains equipped with China's CRH380A system simultaneously took off at 9:00 a.m. Tuesday from Shanghai's Hongqiao Station and from Hangzhou Station. Trains on the line will travel at an average speed of 350 kilometers per hour, shortening the trip between to 45 minutes from 78 minutes. [More>>xinhuanet.com]

10.26.10 Indonesia tsunami deaths increase after Sumatra quake

October 26 - More than 100 people have been killed and many are missing after a tsunami triggered by an earthquake off the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. Scores of houses were destroyed by waves after the 7.7 magnitude quake, which struck 20km (13 miles) under the ocean floor near the Mentawai islands. Ten villages on the islands were swept away by the tsunami, a disaster official told the AFP news agency. Damage and rough weather are delaying efforts to reach the affected area. Hendri Dori Satoko, a lawmaker in the Mentawai islands, told Metro TV: "Our latest data from crisis centre showed that 108 people have been killed and 502 are still missing." [More>>bbc.co.uk; See also guardian.co.uk, October 26, "Indonesia tsunami death toll rises."]

10.26.10 More than 1,200 new species found in Amazon

October 26 - More than 1,200 new species of plants and animals have been discovered in the Amazon over the last decade, including bald parrots and tiger-striped tarantulas. The South American rainforest has secured its reputation as one of the most diverse places on Earth thanks to the discovery of 637 new plants, 257 fish, 216 amphibians, 55 reptiles, 16 birds and 39 mammals since 1999. The World Wildlife Fund's Amazon Alive! report details bright red species of catfish that are totally blind, a frog with markings that look like a burst of flames and a colorful parrot with a completely bald head. A new species of pink river dolphin has been identified in Bolivia, and a tarantula with five "tiger stripes" on its back was found in Brazil. [More>>news.sky.com]

10.26.10 Chavez orders expropriation of Owens-Illinois

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) October 26 - Venezuela's president did not detail his complaints about the company but said it is "Taking away the money of Venezuelans." Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Monday ordered the expropriation of US-based glass maker Owens-Illinois Inc.'s unit in the South American country. Chavez announced plans to expropriate the company in a televised speech, saying it operates in western Trujillo state. The leftist leader criticized the company's practices in the country, saying it had been "taking away the money of Venezuelans" and exploiting local people. Chavez did not detail his complaints about the company. There was no immediate reaction from the company, based in Perrysburg, Ohio. Owens-Illinois also has operations throughout Latin America in Colombia, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador and the Caribbean, focusing on the manufacture of glass containers. [More>>cbsnews.com]

10.26.10 Yemen recruits tribesmen to hunt al-Qaeda

SANAA, Yemen (AP) October 25 - The Yemeni government has begun a new experiment in fighting al-Qaeda, paying off tribes and providing them with weapons to hunt down militants, officials said Monday. The tactic resembles the US military's policy of persuading Sunni tribes in Iraq to turn against al-Qaeda and form armed "Awakening Councils" to fight the insurgents, an effort that had major success in tamping down the terror group's offshoot there. But it is far more tenuous in Yemen, where powerful tribes frequently shift loyalties and often have branches that support al-Qaeda militants. Yemeni opponents of the policy cast doubt on whether it will be effective and warn that it could further destabilize the situation by fueling infighting among tribes. [More>>alarabiya.net; See related story,

khaleejtimes.com, October 26, "Yemen Interior Ministry imposes ban on weapons" : SANAA - Yemen has ordered the confiscation of all firearms in the possession of its citizens after canceling weapons’ licenses not carrying the Interior Minister's signature. Some 50 million firearms are thought to be in the possession of Yemen's estimated 23 million people. The minister, Gen. Mouthar al-Masri, Tuesday ordered checkpoints and security patrols across the impoverished Arab nation to confiscate any weapons they come across. Possessing a firearm is a rite of passage for most Yemeni males and it will be virtually impossible to enforce the ban, the latest attempt by authorities to try to curtail the spread of illegal weapons. The latest ban comes at a time when al-Qaeda militants are stepping up attacks against Yemeni security forces. [end]

10.26.10 Iraq sentences Tariq Aziz to death

BAGHDAD, October 26 - Tariq Aziz, a former top aide to Saddam Hussein, was sentenced to death by an Iraqi court on Tuesday for crimes against members of rival Shiite political parties. The ruling was the latest in a series of criminal cases against Mr. Aziz, 74, whose frequent media appearances and travels abroad made him the bespectacled face of Mr. Hussein's regime. For years, Mr. Aziz served as a staunch and public defender of Mr. Hussein before the American-led invasion of 2003. [More>>nytimes.com]

10.26.10 'Syria helped Hezbollah amass some 40,000 missiles'

October 26 - Le Figaro details guerilla group's military structure, and describes how weapons are transferred from Damascus into Lebanon. Hezbollah, Lebanon's Iran- and Syria-backed guerilla organization that became a key player in the Beirut government, has amassed some 40,000 missiles, the French daily Le Figaro reported Monday, saying that Damascus had a major role in replenishing the group's arsenal after its 2006 war with Israel. The report also shed new light on the structure of Hezbollah's military wing. Le Figaro cited the United States as having observed that alliance in January, when its radar spotted 26 missiles M-6002 in the area between Damascus and Syria's border with Lebanon. According to Le Figaro, Hezbollah has to date more than 10,000 fighters, and that its weapons transport system is divided into three units: Unit 108 is responsible for transferring weapons and ammunition from Damascus to Hezbollah bases on the Lebanon border and near the Syrian airport; next comes Unit 112, which transports the weapons from those bases into Lebanon; third is Unit 100, which deals with deployment and training. [More>>haaretz.com]

10.25.10 Largest-ever solar project ok'd in California

WASHINGTON (AP) October 25 - Project developers say at peak output the solar farm could generate enough electricity to power more than 300,000 homes. The Obama administration is set to announce approval of a thousand-megawatt solar project on federal land in southern California, the largest in a series of solar projects given the go-ahead in recent weeks. The Interior Department has approved a permit for what will be the world's biggest solar power plant, on federal land in the desert near Blythe, California, 225 miles east of Los Angeles, according to Obama administration officials speaking on condition of anonymity because the announcement had not yet been made. The $6 billion project is being developed by Solar Millennium, a German solar developer. At peak output, the solar farm could generate enough clean electricity to power more than 300,000 homes, according to project developers. [>cbsnews.com]

10.25.10 Mexican officials ID 13 people killed in Tijuana drug rehab center

MEXICO CITY, Mexico, October 25 - Mexican officials have identified 13 people killed Sunday night in a Tijuana drug rehabilitation center, the state-run news agency said Monday. Four heavily armed men stormed into the Centro de Rehabilitacion El Camino and opened fire, the Notimex news agency said. The reported ages of those killed ranged from 19 to 56 years old. The assailants escaped in a vehicle, the news agency said. The dead were identified as: Irineo Godinez Garcia, 47; Antonio Mesa Contreras, 56; Bernabe Alvarez Piceno, 35; Jose Lopez Sauceda, 28; Fabian Gonzalez Zea, 19; Juan Daniel Casi Esquer, 32; Wilson Ramírez Pena, 42; Joaquin García Hernandez, 39; Jorge Palacio Goya, 37; Pedro Villegas, 30; Juan Roberto Sanchez Ortega, 30; Edwin Vargas Avila, 33; and Salvador Bustos, 30.

The slayings occurred one day after armed men burst into a house party in Ciudad Juarez and opened fire, killing 14 people and wounding 14, Notimex said. The ages of those killed in Juarez ranged from 14 to 30, Notimex said. Children as young as 7 and 11 were among the injured, the agency reported. The attack in Juarez was reminiscent of an incident in January, when drug cartel gunmen stormed a house party and killed 15 people. Most of the victims were youths who had no ties to organized crime.

10.25.10 Bomb blast at Sufi shrine in Pakistan kills 6, injures 16

ISLAMABAD, October 23 - In the ongoing series of attacks against the followers of Sufi tradition, the suspected hardline extremists exploded a bomb at the gate of a revered Islamic shrine in Pakpattan, 190 kilometers south of Lahore, killing six people, three of them women, and injuring 16 others. The explosion took place at the shrine of the twelfth century Sufi saint of the Chishti order of South Asia, Baba Farid Ganjshakar, shortly after the morning prayers, when worshipers were leaving the site, police said. Recognized as a great poet of the Punjabi language, Baba Farid is revered by Muslims Sikhs and Hindus. He is also considered to be one of the fifteen Sikh Bhagats within Sikhism and his selected works form part of the Guru Granth Sahib.

"Two boys, posing as milkmen came on a motorcycle and parked it near the eastern gate of the shrine, minutes before the explosives in a milk container went off," said Muhammad Kashif, police chief of Pakpattan. The explosive device was remote-controlled, he said. At least a 200 people have been reported to be present at the time of the blast. The injured were taken to the District Headquarters hospital in Pakpattan. Ten injured people were said to be in critical condition....Twin blast at the shrine of Abdullah Shah Ghazi in Karachi earlier this month left nine people dead. 47 people were killed in July when Taliban extremists attacked the Shrine of Hazrat Data Ganj Bakhsh in Lahore. At least 100 people were killed in May when militants attacked worshippers of the minority Ahmadi sect in mosques in Lahore.
[Full story>>timesofindia.indiatimes.com]

10.25.10 NATO raids kill at least 25 people in Helmand

KANDAHAR, Pakistan, October 23 - NATO warplanes bombed a village in Helmand on Monday, destroying a mosque, damaging homes and killing at least 25 people. Helmand provincial council chief Fazal Bari said that the toll in Maigan village would rise because many bodies were still buried in the rubble. NATO officials confirmed the air strike on the small settlement in Baghran district, asserting that it had targeted "a senior Taliban facilitator." Distraught residents said that scores of civilians had died in the attack, including a 10-year-old child. Eyewitness Salah Ayap said: "People are very angry." Mr. Ayap reported that Western troops raided the village at around 2am, sparking a fierce gunfight that was brought to an abrupt end by the NATO blitz. Only two walls and one small room of the large mosque were left standing and nearby homes had been damaged, Mr. Ayap said...Mr. Karzai raised eyebrows on Monday when he revealed that he receives $700,000 to $975,000 (£450,000-£620,000) "once or twice a year" from Iran for "official presidential expenses." He said the US has known about the Iranian assistance for years and that Washington also gives the palace "bags of money." [Full story>>thenews.com.pk; See related stories,

khaleejtimes.com, October 25, "Karzai slams US security firms over attacks"
: President Hamid Karzai on Monday accused US private security companies, including the firm formerly known as Blackwater, of corruption and of fueling nine years of war in his country. In August, Karzai ordered all security firms to disband before the end of the year. This week, however, the US-backed Karzai said some of the firms could operate to provide security for reconstruction projects. "Deals under the name of private security companies are cut in the hallways of American government buildings. It involves 1.5 billion dollars," he said. "The money, 1.5 billion dollars, is being distributed there (in the United States) on Blackwater and this and that," he said, referring to the giant US-based security firm now known as Xe...

xinhuanet.com, October 25, "White House says concerned about Iran's 'negative influence' on Afghanistan"
: WASHINGTON - The White House said on Monday that the United States is concerned about Iran's trying to have "a negative influence" on Afghanistan, following reports that Iran regularly gives large sums of cash to senior aid to Afghan President Hamid Karzai. White House Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton told reporters that Iran should have a positive influence on the formation of Afghan government. Burton urged Iran to ensure that Afghanistan will not be the safe haven for terrorists and the origin of future terrorist attacks. The New York Times reported on Saturday that Karzai's chief of staff, Umer Daudzai, was covertly receiving "bags of cash," totaling millions of US dollars, from Iranian officials. The story said the money is used by Afghan leaders as "slush fund" to pay lawmakers and tribal leaders to secure their loyalty to the Karzai government. And Iran intends to use the money to increase its influence in the war-torn country...

10.25.10 Files show al-Qaeda's grip on Iraq

October 25 - Leaked documents show how al-Qaeda arrived in Iraq after the US military overthrew Saddam's government. "If you're asking, are there al-Qaeda in Iraq, the answer is yes, there are. It's a fact, yes." Donald Rumsfeld, US Secretary of Defence, August 2002. It was one of the key American justifications for the Iraq war. But the theory that al-Qaeda was present in Saddam-era Iraq, much cited by the Bush administration in the run-up to the invasion, has been undermined by the content of secret US military documents. The files contain only half a dozen references to the group for the whole of 2004, the year records begin. But under the leadership of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a Jordanian who had met Osama bin Laden while fighting the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, the classified reports show that al-Qaeda established itself as major player in the carnage as the conflict wore on.

The infrequency of al-Qaeda-related files early in the war suggest that US officials were wrong when they accused Iraq of harbouring the group's fighters in the years prior to the invasion. Instead, the narrative that emerges from the classified reports indicates that the US presence itself was what attracted them to the country. Experts have always doubted the existence of a link between the secular Baathist government of Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda. Speaking at the British inquiry into the Iraq War in 2005, Eliza Manningham-Buller, the UK's spy chief at the time of the invasion, said that even US intelligence officials doubted a connection between Iraq and the group. 
[More>>aljazeera.net; See related story,

france24.com, October 25, "Why have WikiLeaks' Iraq war logs failed to cause a stir?"
: Over the weekend, whistleblower website WikiLeaks released some 400,000 classified documents relating to the Iraq war. But this trove, drawn from US soldiers on the ground, seems to have failed to create serious controversy. FRANCE 24 finds out why. A huge new set of classified military documents was posted on the website of whistleblower organization Wikileaks on October 22, followed up by a press conference in London the next day by the group's founder Julian Assange. The 391,832 documents are edited "SIGACT" or "significant action" field reports written by US soldiers between 2004 and 2009 and include evidence of detainee abuse by Iraqi forces, civilian deaths and the involvement of Iran in operations in Iraq. But according to experts, while the sheer number of documents released is too large for journalists and analysts to dig through in a short amount of time, much of what has been revealed so far is already public knowledge, and is far from controversial...

10.25.10 Pakistani clerics issue death decree against Musharraf

ISLAMABAD, October 24 - A grand assembly of Islamic scholars in Pakistan has issued a death decree against former military dictator General Pervez Musharraf, requiring him to be killed under Islamic laws for his crimes against humanity and Islam. The decree holds Musharraf, who is currently living in self-exile in London, as a “criminal of Islam and Pakistan” liable to be killed by any Muslim whosoever finds him. In addition to that, a reward money of $1.3 million was also announced by Nawab Talal Akbar Bugti, the chief of the Bugti tribe in Pakistan's eastern province of Balochistan, whose father Nawab Akbar Bugti was killed in a 2006 military operation launched by Gen. Musharraf to crush his political opponents. The religious decree (fatwa) was issued by around 50 noted scholars from all schools of thought who converged on the invitation of Bugti in his hometown in Balochistan.

The fatwa held Musharraf guilty of a variety of crimes like desecration the Quran and the killing of hundreds of female students Islamic jurisprudence in Jamia Hafsa in Islamabad in a military operation. The list of crimes the assembly found Musharraf guilty of also included murder of political opponents like Nawab Akbar Bugti, Betraying Dr. Aafia Siddiqi and thousands of other Muslims to Washington for money, handing over Afghan ambassador Mulla Abdus Salam Zaeef to Washington in violation of international laws and Islamic norms, scrapping Quran laws like Hudood Ordinance from Pakistan's constitution, jailing the father of country's nuclear program Dr. Abdul Khan allegedly to please Washington and disregarding the constitution which amounts to high treason under Pakistani law. The speakers on the occasion also held the present PPP-led coalition government as guilty in Musharraf's crimes since they not only allowed him to go free by seeing him off from the Presidential residence with a Guard of Honor, but also by continuing his policies. The assembly also demanded that Supreme Court to take suo motu notice of Musharraf's crimes and begin proceedings against him for treason.

10.25.10 US to build £8 billion super base on Pacific island of Guam

October 25 - The US is building an £8 billion super military base on the Pacific island of Guam in an attempt to contain China's military build-up. The expansion will include a dock for a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, a missile defence system, live-fire training sites and the expansion of the island's airbase. It will be the largest investment in a military base in the western Pacific since the Second World War, and the biggest spend on naval infrastructure in decades. However, Guam residents fear the build-up could hurt their ecosystem and tourism-dependent economy. Estimates suggest that the island's population will rise by almost 50 per cent from its current 173,000 at the peak of construction. It will eventually house 19,000 Marines who will be relocated from the Japanese island of Okinawa, where the US force has become unpopular. The US's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has said that this could trigger serious water shortages. The EPA said that dredging the harbour to allow an aircraft carrier to berth would damage 71 acres of pristine coral reefs. [More>>telegraph.co.uk]

10.22.10 Turkish police arrest 5 suspected of al-Qaeda ties

October 22 - Group leader was part of anti-US insurgency in Afghanistan; another designed a computer program to jam flight controls of unmanned aircraft. Turkish police arrested five students who allegedly aided al-Qaeda in Afghanistan, Reuters reported on Friday. The five men were reportedly taken to court on Friday after being arrested two days earlier. The group's leader had been arrested before, and was part of the insurgency against US troops in Afghanistan. Another suspect, Reuters reported, is a 23-year-old mathematics student who reportedly made bombs and designed computer programs that jam flight controls of unmanned aircraft.

Other suspects raised money for al-Qaeda. In July, Turkish police detained 29 people suspected of links to the al-Qaeda, and in January, police rounded up 120 people. Police were been on alert against suspects since homegrown Islamic militants tied to al-Qaeda carried out suicide bombings in Istanbul in 2003, killing 58 people. In 2008, an attack blamed on al-Qaeda-affiliated militants outside the US Consulate in Istanbul left three assailants and three policemen dead.
[>jpost.com; See other details,

foxnews.com, October 22, "5 al-Qaeda suspects detained in Turkey" : ...
The agency said the other suspects included a 19-year-old from Chechnya studying computer science at Istanbul University as well as a 22-year-old civil engineering student in the city of Antalya. The two others were a self-employed person and a shoemaker or seller, according to Anatolia. The police official in Izmir would not confirm that a Chechnyan was among the detained....Anatolia said the five were in contact via e-mail with a person who had previously been jailed on al-Qaeda related charges in Turkey and was now believed to be at an al-Qaeda camp in Afghanistan. All five are suspected of raising and sending money to al-Qaeda camps, it said...

10.22.10 Death toll in Peshawar blast climbs to five

PESHAWAR, Pakistan, October 22 - The death toll from a blast at a mosque in Chatto Laar, Pishtakhara has risen to five as two critical injured succumbed to their wounds in the evening at hospital, police informed. Initially three persons had lost their lives when a remote control bomb, planted besides one of the mosque's pillar exploded soon after the Juma prayers. Police present at the hospital informed that two more persons have died of their injuries taking the death toll to five with 22 others injured, some critically. [>thenews.com.pk]

10.22.10 NOAA: Arctic changes are affecting climate elsewhere

October 22 - The Arctic's warming trend is beginning to affect the climate farther south, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said this week in its annual Arctic Report Card. "There is evidence that the effect of higher air temperatures in the lower Arctic atmosphere in fall is contributing to changes in the atmospheric circulation in both the Arctic and northern mid-latitudes," wrote the report's authors, a team of 69 international scientists. Extreme cold and big snowfalls can be blamed on the Arctic changes, according to NOAA. "Beyond affecting the humans and wildlife that call the area home, the Arctic's warmer temperatures and decreases in permafrost, snow cover, glaciers and sea ice also have wide-ranging consequences for the physical and biological systems in other parts of the world," NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco said. Sea ice reaches its minimum in September every year. This year's September ice cover was the third-smallest recorded since microwave satellites started taking measurements in 1979, the authors wrote. [More>>cnn.com; See related story,

thestar.com.my, (Reuters) October 22, "Invasive species, climate change "deadly duo"
: SINGAPORE - Climate change is set to drive the spread of invasive plant and animals species, threatening forests, fisheries and crops, in a double blow to nature and livelihoods, a World Bank-funded report said on Friday. The study by Nairobi-based Global Invasive Species Programme says a warmer world, more extreme weather and higher levels of planet-warming carbon dioxide will give some species an edge, devastating ecosystems at sea and on land. "The estimated damage from invasive species worldwide totals more than $1.4 trillion annually 5 percent of the global economy," says the report issued on the sidelines of a major UN meeting in Japan aimed at combatting the destruction of nature. The United Nations says climate change, pollution, deforestation and over-hunting have led to a rapid rise in extinctions, threatening the richness of nature that underpins services such as clean air, water as well as food and health...

10.22.10 Horror disease hits Uganda

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) October 22 - A disease whose progression and symptoms seem straight out of a horror movie but which can be treated has killed at least 20 Ugandans and sickened more than 20,000 in just two months. Jiggers, small insects which look like fleas, are the culprits in the epidemic which causes parts of the body to rot. They often enter through the feet. Once inside a person's body, they suck the blood, grow and breed, multiplying by the hundreds. Affected body parts - buttocks, lips, even eyelids - rot away. James Kakooza, Uganda's minister of state for primary health care, said jiggers can easily kill young children by sucking their blood and can cause early deaths in grown-ups who have other diseases. Most of hose infected, especially the elderly, cannot walk or work. "It is an epidemic which we are fighting against and I am sure over time we will eradicate the jiggers," Kakooza said. The insects breed in dirty, dusty places. The medical name for the parasitic disease is tungiasis, which is caused by the female sand fly burrowing into the skin. It exists in parts of Latin America and the Caribbean, besides sub-Saharan Africa. [More>>thejakartapost.com]

10.22.10 Malaria fears escalate as most dangerous mosquito mutates into two species

October 22 - Most dangerous mosquito is evolving to create a new problem for Africa, and for scientists fighting disease. The most dangerous type of malaria-carrying mosquito, which kills up to a million people each year, is evolving into two different species, posing grave problems for controlling the transmission of the blood parasite. Scientists have found that Anopheles gambiae, which is widespread across Africa and is responsible for about half of the 500 million new cases of malaria each year, has split into two genetically different strains that are well on their way to becoming distinct species. The revelation could present real difficulties in controlling malaria because eradication strategies directed against one mosquito species may not be effective against another, according to the scientists who discovered the genetic differences between the two strains. "From our new studies, we can see that mosquitoes are evolving more quickly than we thought and that unfortunately strategies that might work against one strain of mosquito might not be effective against another," said Mara Lawniczak of Imperial College London. [More>>independent.co.uk; See related story,

independent.co.uk, October 22, "Malaria deaths in India 'could be 13 times worse than thought' "
: The deadly impact of malaria in India could be much worse than previously thought, according to a new report that claims 13 times more people may annually die from the disease. The study, carried out by the Centre for Global Health Research at the University of Toronto and published in The Lancet, said perhaps 205,000 people in India die every year. The World Health Organization (WHO) had previously estimated there were around 15,000 such fatalities...

10.22.10 Sick desperate to get help as Haiti cholera outbreak kills 138

October 22 - Chaos reigned north of Haiti's capital Friday as hospitals overflowed with people rushing to get help from a fast-moving cholera outbreak that has killed at least 138 people. Eric Lotz, Haiti's national director for the nonprofit Operation Blessing, described a "horrific" scene outside St. Nicolas hospital, the main medical facility in the city of St. Marc, as patients and their family members fought to get care. "There was bedlam outside the gate," said Lotz. "Inside (the hospital), every square inch is covered with people." Some people waited 24 hours or more to get help outside the hospital, many of them on stretchers, said Terry Snow, Haiti director for the nonprofit Youth With a Mission...In addition to at least 138 people who have died, 1,526 people have been sickened in the outbreak, said Imogen Wall, the U.N. humanitarian spokeswoman in Haiti. [Full story w/video>>cnn.com]

10.21.10 Drone attacks 'taking serious toll' on al-Qaeda in Pakistan

October 21 - American drone attacks are "taking a serious toll" on al-Qaeda's leadership in Pakistan's tribal areas close to the Afghan border, according to the Central Intelligence Agency. Leon Panetta, the CIA director, said the organization had been able to intensify its operations in the terrorist group's Pakistan 'safe-haven' through the personal support of Barack Obama, the US president, increased intelligence cooperation from Pakistan, and through "additional capabilities." Although he did not specifically mention the increased deployment of drones, the 'additional capabilities' is a direct reference to them.

The use of unmanned Predator drones is not directly acknowledged by the United States because of the sensitivity in Pakistan, where they are regarded as a breach of its sovereignty. In this year so far the United States has launched more than 88 drone attacks compared with 53 for the whole of last year. The escalation of America's drone war in Pakistan is believed to have driven some Taliban and al-Qaeda figures to seek safety in Karachi and other "settled" parts of the country.

10.21.10 Britons fund the Taliban claims regional Afghan commander in exclusive interview

October 21 - A Taliban commander has told Sky News the bulk of its funding comes from the UK, where dedicated fighters are ready to launch terrorist attacks upon his order. The regional leader made the claims at a secret meeting after we travelled deep into bandit country under the cover of darkness. Far beyond the reach of any government or military authority, we drove through river beds and over passes into the mountains that divide Afghanistan and Pakistan. This is Kunar province where the Taliban reign supreme and where, after months of negotiation, we were told we would meet the commander and his commando platoon. Unsure what to expect, we were kept in a compound until late at night. Through the gloom the first shadowy figures appeared. Thirty men in total, dressed in ordinary Afghan clothes but with their faces masked by their scarves, filed into a room that had been set aside for our meeting, their weapons and gun belts strapped over their shoulders.

The commander claimed to have over 1,000 men in this central region of Kunar, with more in Pakistan who cross the border with impunity. He said they had been given special permission to speak to us by the Taliban leadership and that their usual order to take all foreigners hostage had been suspended for the duration of our meeting. For an hour I questioned them about their tactics, their demands for withdrawal of all foreign military and asked them about their determination to keep fighting and to continue recruiting. The commander said they were prepared to negotiate with the authorities but that the first demand on the agenda was unmovable; the foreign troops had to withdraw.

"We have endured a lot of pain from American forces in this place," he said. "They have killed many. We tell our people of the ruthless way they kill and make our people suffer. We preach the teachings of the Koran - that Jihad is our birthright and our duty. And whoever we tell joins us immediately." The commander revealed they are funded by individual donations gathered in community centres and mosques around the world. It was then he claimed, remarkably, Britain is the Taliban's greatest source of revenue. "We are not like a government, we depend on individuals. We get donations from our Muslim brothers in Britain for Jihad," he said. "It is the duty of all Muslims to pay towards fighting Jihad. This is how we get our money and buy our weapons and carry on fighting.
[More w/videos>>news.sky.com]

10.21.10 Radical cleric al-Awlaki invited to private lunch at Pentagon in effort to reach out to Muslims after 9/11

October 21 - Days before Pentagon luncheon, al-Awlaki had been interviewed by the FBI about 9/11 hijackers. Anwar Al-Awlaki is an American-born radical cleric linked to the 9/11 hijackers, the failed Christmas Day airline bombing and the Fort Hood shootings. President Obama himself has authorized the targeted killing of Awlaki in Yemen, where he is believed to be hiding. He is of Yemeni descent but was born in New Mexico, serving as an imam in both Virginia and San Diego where he met several of the 9/11 hijackers who flew a plane into the Pentagon.

But just weeks after that terrorist attack, Awlaki was invited to a private lunch at the Pentagon as part of an effort to reach out to the Muslim community. When asked by ABC News if Awlaki had actually attended the lunch, Pentagon spokesman Col. David Lapan said, "We believe that to be true." "We believe it was hosted by a small group within (but not including) the Department of Defense General Counsel's staff," a Pentagon spokesman tells ABC News. Days before, Awlaki, whose Arabic name is Aulaqi by the FBI, had been interviewed by the FBI about the hijackers. The 9/11 commission report later found:

"Another potentially significant San Diego contact for [9/11 hijackers] Hazmi and Mihdhar was Anwar Al-Alwaki, an imam at the Rabat mosque. Born in New Mexico and thus a US citizen, Awlaki grew up in Yemen and studied in the United States on a Yemeni government scholarship. We do not know how or when Hazmi and Mihdhar first met Awlaki. The operatives may even have met or at least talked to him the same day they first moved to San Diego. Hazmi and Mihdhar reportedly respected Awlaki as a religious figure and developed a close relationship with him.

"When interviewed after 9/11, Awlaki said he did not recognize Hazmi's name but did identify his picture. Although Awlaki admitted meeting with Hazmi several times, he claimed not to remember any specifics of what they discussed. He described Hazmi as a soft-spoken Saudi student who used to appear at the mosque with a companion but who did not have a large circle of friends," the report continued.

"Awlaki left San Diego in mid-2000, and by early 2001 had relocated to Virginia. As we will discuss later, Hazmi eventually showed up at Awlaki's mosque in Virginia, an appearance that may not have been coincidental. We have been unable to learn enough about Awlaki's relationship with Hazmi and Mihdhar to reach a conclusion."

10.21.10 Texas National Guardsman shot dead in Mexico

NUEVO LAREDO, Mexico, October 21 - A Texas National Guardsman and another man were shot dead in the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez, according to local officials and reports. The body of Jose Gil Hernandez Ramirez, 21, of El Paso, was identified by members of his family, Arturo Sandoval, a spokesman for the Chihuahua state attorney general's office, said. A spokesman for the Texas National Guard said they were not yet ready to confirm the man's identity, but said they would do what they could to help his family and a full military funeral would be provided if they wished. Their deaths came as drug cartels fought gunbattles with the Mexican army in several parts of the northern border region, including residential areas, on Wednesday. Parents rushed to take their children out of school to safety while factories forced some workers to stay inside for their own safety and told others not to come to work.

Chihuahua state officials told the El Paso Times newspaper that Ciudad Juarez residents found Ramirez and another man, named as Rafael Ramirez Reza, 42, dead on the street with multiple gunshot wounds. A third man was also reportedly shot and was taken to a hospital for treatment...Special Agent Michael Martinez, a spokesman for the FBI, told the the El Paso Times that the FBI was investigating. In Ciudad Juarez and Nuevo Laredo, Mexican troops and drug gang members engaged in shootouts, while in Matamoros, across the border from Brownsville, assailants threw a grenade at an army barracks. Witnesses in Nuevo Laredo said gunmen forced people from their cars to use the vehicles in the blockades. At least four shootouts took place in the city, including one behind a Walmart store near a residential area, according to witnesses and reporters at the scene.
[Full story>>msnbc.msn.com]

10.21.10 'Iran is secretly setting up banks in Muslim countries'

October 21 - Report: Teheran attempting to avoid banking sanctions by using fake names; two such banks already open in Iraq. Iran is secretly setting up banks in Muslim countries around the world under fake names in order avoid sanctions, US officials told The Washington Post on Thursday. The Treasury Department banned 16 Iranian banks that allegedly supported the Iranian nuclear program and other terrorist activities, and many other countries have passed similar measures. Iran's new banks show that sanctions have been effective, US officials reportedly said...Teheran has established at least two banks in Baghdad, Iraqi officials said, and has tried, unsuccessfully to establish more, in the Kurdistan area. Treasury officials have reportedly crossed the globe recently, in order to convince countries like Azerbaijan, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Lebanon to cooperate with sanctions. Last month, Iran offered Azerbaijan to create a joint bank for the two countries, according to Azeri news reports. The country has a branch of Iran's largest commercial bank, Bank Melli. [Full story>>jpost.com]

10.21.10 42 terror camps active in PoK, new ones added: Army Chief

NEW DELHI, October 21 - Anti-India terrorist infrastructure in Pakistan is intact and currently 42 terror camps, including new ones in Pak-occupied Kashmir, are being run, Army Chief Gen. V K Singh disclosed on Thursday. Now even women are being trained to wage Pakistan's proxy war against India, he said in an interview. Gen. Singh said infiltration has gone up recently and around 600 terrorists are waiting at "launch pads" in PoK along the Line of Control and international border to sneak into India. Pakistan has "invested heavily in the proxy war against India" and there has been "no substantial effort" by it to act against terror groups which operate from its soil and are used as a "strategic tool" by that country. "Currently, 42 terrorist training camps are located in Pakistan/PoK. Inputs reveal that some new camps have also been established in PoK for undertaking terrorist training," he said. [More>>timesofindia.indiatimes.com]

10.21.10 'Rivlin accuses Carter of supporting Hamas, spurring terror

October 21 - Knesset speaker slams former US president for meeting with Hamas official, Khaled Mashal; Carter defends decision saying purpose was to bring peace to region. Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin on Thursday told former US president Jimmy Carter that after his visits to Hamas senior official Khaled Mashal and Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, Israelis see him as "supporting Hamas and encouraging terror." Rivlin met with Carter and others on the Elders mission as part of an international group of veteran statesmen that sets out to offer "collective influence and experience to support peace building." Carter responded that the purpose of his visit is to bring peace to the region, and meet with all sides involved in the conflict. He said his role is to listen, and not support.

Rivlin also commented on a tour that the delegation did of the east Jerusalem village of Silwan. He slammed suggestions that the Jews are allowed to live in a large area of Palestinian sovereignty. He said that Jews and Arabs in Jerusalem live side by side. There is no way that the city can be divided. A step like this will turn Jerusalem into another Belfast. Ireland's former President Mary Robinson claimed that legislation in Israel includes dozens of bills that are racist towards Arabs. Rivlin explained that Arabs do not serve in the IDF, for understandable reasons, and in light of this there is a preference to those that serve in the army for a number of different topics.

10.21.10 Deadly bomb blast hits Philippines bus

October 21 - At least eight people are dead and ten injured in attack blamed on extortion gang with links to Muslim militants. A bomb ripped through a passenger bus today in the southern Philippines, killing at least eight people and wounding 10. Authorities blamed the attack on an extortion gang with links to Muslim militants. The bus was travelling with more than 50 passengers when the powerful blast from an overhead compartment shook the back of the vehicle, the police chief superintendent Gil Meneses said. Two of the victims were decapitated, he said. The wounded were brought to hospitals near Matalam township in North Cotabato province. Police and army units interviewed survivors and combed through the twisted metal trying to extract the injured, Meneses said. No one one has claimed responsibility for the bomb. A military spokesman, Lieutenant Colonel Randolph Cabangbang, said authorities suspected the al-Khobar extortion gang as the bus company had been targeted for extortion in the past. [More>>guardian.co.uk]

10.20.10 Britain unveils brutal spending cuts, raises retirement age

(Reuters) October 20 - The British government unveiled billions of pounds in public spending cuts and tax increases. Finance minister George Osborne (pictured) says the measures are needed to address Britain’s 156-billion-pound deficit. Britain said on Wednesday it would cut half a million public sector jobs, raise the retirement age and slash the welfare state as part of the biggest spending cuts in a generation. After months of bitternegotiations,Conservative finance minister George Osborne confirmed he would press ahead with almost all the spending cuts he had outlined in a June budget.

Capital spending, however, he said would be 2 billion pounds higher than a year originally planned because of the difficulty of getting out of contractual obligations. "Tackling this budget deficit is unavoidable. The decisions about how we do it are not. There are choices. And today we make them. Investment in the future rather than the bills of past failure. That is our choice," Osborne told parliament. Economists are split between those who say the drastic action is needed and those who argue it will tip Britain back into recession. Almost all agree, however, that growth will slow and the Bank of England (BoE) will have to keep monetary policy super-loose for the foreseeable future.

Sterling trims gains against the dollar and slipped versus the euro on Wednesday and some analysts linked the move to Osborne reiterating plans to impose a levy on banks. Osborne said that the state pension age for men and women will rise to 66 by 2020. "Raising the state pension age is what many countries are now doing, and will by the end of the next parliament save over 5 billion pounds ($7.9 billion) in a year." He said he would also cut a further 7 billion pounds off the welfare budget on top of the 11 billion pounds of reductions he identified in June. Around 490,000 public sector jobs were likely to disappear over the next four years.
[More>>france24.com; See also, dailymail.co.uk, October 20, "Osborne slashes 490,000 jobs, cuts welfare by £7billion and forces us all to work longer - but there's even MORE money for overseas aid and global warming."]

10.20.10 French police frustrated by new strike blockades

October 20 - The BBC's Christian Fraser says the French government has authorised the use of a special intervention force to deal with protesters blocking fuel depots. French strikers have tightened fuel blockades, hours after security forces began clearing protesters from depots. Police reopened three sites in western France overnight, after ministers ordered that all of them be lifted. But protesters against the government's pension reforms later returned to one of the fuel depots and imposed a new blockade in the south. In Paris, masked youths clashed with police in the suburb of Nanterre and students gathered outside the Senate. The upper house of the French legislature is due to vote on raising the retirement age later this week. Transport workers are continuing their protests and the national rail operator, the SNCF, said one in three high-speed TGV trains had been cancelled. President Nicolas Sarkozy has insisted he will press ahead with plans to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62 and the full state pension age from 65 to 67. [More>>bbc.co.uk]

10.20.10 Taliban-style bomb kills 10 Afghan wedding guests

HEART, Afghanistan, October 20 - A Taliban-style roadside bomb tore through a vehicle taking a family to a wedding party in Afghanistan on Wednesday, killing 10 people, mostly women and children, police said. "The mine was planted by the enemies of Afghanistan to target military forces. It hit a civilian bus, 10 people most of them women and children were killed," said Abdul Jabar Purdili, police chief in western Herat province. The bomb, similar to those used by Taliban and other insurgents in the long war in Afghanistan, was planted on a road between Herat and Nimroz provinces, both bordering Iran, he said. [More>>thenews.com.pk]

10.20.10 NATO soldier killed in Afghan explosion

KABUL, Afghanistan, October 20 - A soldier with NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) was killed in an explosion caused by a homemade bomb in southern Afghanistan on Wednesday, the alliance said. The soldier — whose nationality was not released, following ISAF policy — took to 597 the number of foreign troops killed in Afghanistan so far this year. This year's toll is the worst on record and compares to 521 in 2009. [More>>thenews.com.pk]

10.19.10 Indian report links Pakistan spies to 2008 Mumbai siege

NEW DELHI (AP) October 19 - US citizen convicted in attack tells interrogators officers from Pakistani intelligence agency were intertwined with terrorist group. Pakistan's intelligence agency was deeply involved in planning the 2008 terror attack on Mumbai, going so far as to fund reconnaissance missions to the Indian city, according to a report on the interrogation of a US citizen convicted in the attack. The attack, blamed on the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba group, killed 166 people, paralyzed India's business capital and froze peace efforts between Pakistan and India. David Headley, who pleaded guilty in US federal court to laying the groundwork for the attack, told Indian interrogators in June that officers from Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency were deeply intertwined with Lashkar-e-Taiba.

The spy agency provided handlers for all the top members of the group, gave them direction and provided their funding, Headley said, according to the government report on his June interrogation. The report, marked secret, was obtained by The Associated Press late Monday. "According to Headley, every big action of LeT is done in close coordination with ISI," the report said, using a common abbreviation for Lashkar-e-Taiba.

India has long accused the Pakistan spy service of being involved with, and in some cases directing, terror groups. US officials have also accused the agency of working with the Taliban to coordinate attacks on NATO forces in Afghanistan. A senior intelligence official in Pakistan, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media on the record, said the allegations were baseless. According to the Indian report,

Headley met repeatedly with his intelligence agency handler, whom he identified as Maj. Iqbal, throughout the preparations for the Mumbai attacks. Maj. Iqbal gave him $25,000 to fund his scouting trips to India and a camera-phone, according to the report. Headley also received training in the basics of spy work from an instructor assigned to him by Maj. Iqbal, the report said. In return, Headley gave Maj. Iqbal copies of the photos and videos he took of potential targets during his trips to India, the report said. Iqbal also made suggestions about how best to carry out the attack on Mumbai, the report said. Earlier this month, Interpol — acting on India's request — notified its members to be on the alert for Maj. Iqbal.
[More>>jpost.com; See also

guardian.co.uk, October 19, "Pakistan intelligence services 'aided Mumbai terror attacks' "
: Militant arrested last year described dozens of meetings between ISI officers and senior Lashkar-e-Taiba operatives. Pakistan's powerful intelligence services were heavily involved in preparations for the Mumbai terrorist attacks of November 2008, according to classified Indian government documents obtained by the Guardian. A 109-page report into the interrogation of key suspect David Headley, a Pakistani-American militant arrested last year and detained in the US, makes detailed claims of ISI support for the bombings.

.."The ISI … had no ambiguity in understanding the necessity to strike India," Headley is reported to have said. The aim of the agency was "controlling further split in the Kashmir-based outfits, providing them a sense of achievement and shifting … the theatre of violence from the domestic soil of Pakistan to India." Headley describes meeting once with a "Colonel Kamran" from the military intelligence service and having a series of meetings with a "Major Iqbal" and a "Major Sameer Ali." A fellow conspirator was handled by a Colonel Shah, he claims. Headley also alleges that he was given $25,000 by his ISI handler to finance one of eight surveillance missions in India. However, Headley describes the ISI director general, Lt. General Shuja Pasha, visiting a key senior militant from LeT in prison after the attacks in a bid "to understand" the operation, implying that, as many western security agencies suspect, the top ranks of the agency were unaware of at least the scale of the planned strike....

10.19.10 Taliban's influence expands into northern Afghanistan

October 19 - The Taliban's influence in northern Afghanistan has expanded in recent months from a few hotspots to much of the region, as insurgents respond to the US-led coalition's surge in the south by seizing new ground in areas once considered secure. Taliban militants stop traffic nightly at checkpoints on the road from Kabul to Uzbekistan, just outside Baghlan province's capital city of Pul-e-Khumri, frequently blowing up fuel convoys and seizing travelers who work with the government or the international community. In many areas here and the rest of the north, the Taliban have effectively supplanted the official authorities, running local administrations and courts, and conscripting recruits. "Day by day, the Taliban are advancing into new districts," said provincial council chief Mohammad Rasoul Mohseni of Baghlan. Such advances challenge the coalition strategy that assumes Taliban losses in its southern heartland would undermine the entire insurgency, driving the militants to pursue peace on terms acceptable to the West. [More>>foxnews.com]

10.19.10 More than a million join protests in latest pension reform push

October 19 - French protesters engaged in a sixth day of nationwide demonstrations and continued strikes against President Nicolas Sarkozy's unpopular pension reform as the government tapped on emergency reserves to offset a growing fuel shortage. French President Nicolas Sarkozy vowed action against strike-induced fuel shortages threatening the economy on Tuesday as workers and students rallied en masse to defend their right to retire at 60. More than a million people joined the protest marches, the government said, while unions put the figure at 3.5 million. Unions oppose the retirement reform which they say places an unfair burden on workers and have offered alternative proposals to lower France's public deficit. Union estimates for turnout, frequently three times higher than those of police, were not immediately available. Meanwhile, with all 12 French oil refineries shut down by strikes, Sarkozy said the cabinet would draw up a plan to stop France grinding to a standstill. [More>>france24.com]

10.19.10 Six dead as Chechen parliament is stormed

October 19 - At least six people have been killed after a suicide bomber and gunmen attacked two government buildings in Russia's volatile Chechnya region. Striking as people made their way to work, one insurgent apparently detonated explosives outside the main parliament before two armed militants ran inside, sparking a gun battle with guards. In a separate attack, the agriculture ministry part of the parliament complex in Grozny has also been stormed. At least two police officers and one parliament employee have died, while 17 people have been injured. There had been reports of hostages being seized but, according to the government, all the militants involved at least three men are now dead. "The operation is over and all the terrorists were liquidated," said a parliament spokesman. According to Chechnya's leader Ramzan Kadyrov, all members of the parliament are alive and safe. [More>>news.sky.com; See also,

thestar.com.my (Reuters) October 19, "Rebels stage suicide attack on Chechen parliament"
: GROZNY, Russia - Islamist rebels killed at least four people on Tuesday as they tried to seize Chechnya's parliament in a brazen suicide attack that showed Russia has failed to quell insurgency on its southern flank. Three rebels burst into the parliament compound in the Chechen capital of Grozny at 0845 local time (0445 GMT) as deputies arrived for work and began the attack, which lasted until government forces stormed the building. One blew himself up and two others went on the rampage inside, spraying bullets around as they screamed "Allahu Akbar" ("God is Greatest"), a Reuters source who spoke to a witness at the parliament building said. The remaining two attackers holed themselves up on the ground floor and then blew themselves up when forces loyal to Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov stormed the building...

10.19.10 Shots fired at Pentagon

WASHINGTON (AP) October 19 - Someone fired shots at the Pentagon early Tuesday, hitting the building and causing minor damage, defense officials said. Police who protect the massive Defense Department headquarters temporarily locked down some road and pedestrian entrances to the building after a civilian reported he may have heard shots at about 5am on the south side of the facility. A sweep of the area and facility found that some shots had hit the building, Marine Col. Dave Lapan, a Pentagon spokesman said. He didn't know how many or from what kind of weapon. Roads and pedestrian entrances leading to the Pentagon were reopened a little after 5:30am but part of nearby highway 395 was later temporarily closed for part of the investigation.

A dozen police also were seen at around 9am walking side-by-side in a line as they combed through a grassy area on the south side of the building. Lapan said there were no injuries. In response to a question, he said he did not know whether there was any connection between Tuesday's incident and Monday's discovery of bullet holes in windows at the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Triangle, Va., some 30 miles south of the Pentagon. A cleaning crew at the museum associated with the Quantico Marine Base called police when they noticed the bullet holes in windows high up in a part of the building that faces Interstate 95. Police believe the shots were fired at the museum late Saturday or early Sunday, when no one was inside.

10.19.10 Violence continues in Pakistan's Karachi; 16 killed

KARACHI, Pakistan (Reuters) October 19 - Violence continued in Pakistan's troubled southern city of Karachi on Tuesday, with at least 16 people killed in different attacks, including eight in one incident, police and officials said. At least 49 people have been killed in Karachi since Saturday when violence erupted ahead of a by-election to replace a provincial lawmaker murdered in August, raising fears of instability in the country's commercial capital. Senior police official Naveed Khawaja said unknown gunmen riding on motorcycles opened fire in the Sher Shah area, known locally for used cars and machine parts. Eight people were killed and 10 injured in the incident, said Hashim Raza, health secretary of Sindh province of which Karachi is the capital. Another eight were killed in other incidents in the city on Tuesday, police said, though it was not clear if all the attacks were related to the ongoing violence. The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), the dominant political force in Karachi, has already stepped up pressure on the government to stem the violence. The MQM says its workers were among those killed. [More>>timesofindia.indiatimes.com]

10.18.10 Osama in northwest Pakistan under IS I protection: Report

WASHINGTON, October 18 - World's most wanted terrorists Osama bin Laden and his deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri may be hiding close to each other in houses in northwest Pakistan, protected by some members of ISI, a media report said on Monday. The two top al-Qaeda commanders may not be together and are not living in caves as foreseen by American experts to evade detection, CNN reported quoting a top NATO officer based in Afghanistan. "Nobody in al-Qaeda is living in a cave," said the official, who declined to be named because of the sensitivity of the intelligence matters involved, CNN said. Rather, al-Qaeda's top leadership is believed to be living in relative comfort, protected by locals and some members of the Pakistani intelligence services ISI, the official said. Pakistan has repeatedly denied protecting members of the al-Qaeda leadership.

The official said the general region where Osama is likely to have moved around in recent years ranges from the mountainous Chitral area in the far northwest near the Chinese border, to the Kurram Valley which neighbors Afghanistan's Tora Bora, one of the Taliban strongholds during the US invasion in 2001. Tora Bora is also the region from which Osama is believed to have escaped during a US bombing raid in late 2001. US officials have long said there have been no confirmed sightings of Osama or Zawahiri for several years.

10.18.10 Al-Qaeda plotter sent Headley to Britain for weapons: Report

LONDON, October 18 - An al-Qaeda commander, who triggered the recent terrorism alert over Mumbai-style attacks on London and cities in Europe, sent 26/11 mastermind David Headley to Britain last year to seek money, weapons and manpower, the media reported today. One-eyed Ilyas Kashmiri sent Pakistani-American Headley to meet two men from Derby in August last year, The Daily Telegraph reported today quoting security sources. The British contacts were supposed to assist Kashmiri's associate with plans for a truck bomb attack on a Danish newspaper behind cartoons of Mohammed.

According to the report, it is feared the network has now been given the task of supporting Kashmiri's plans for Mumbai-style attacks in Europe. Intelligence suggesting that Kashmiri boasted that he had sent terrorists to Britain and Germany as part of the plot, sparked the alert two weeks ago. MI5, Britain's internal intelligence agency, has been aware of Kashmiri's network for more than a year but has not discovered active plans for attacks. But the Security Service did uncover Headley, who was then arrested at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago on October 3 last year on his way to Pakistan to deliver surveillance videos to Kashmiri.

10.18.10 France warned of new al-Qaeda terror threat

October 18 - France has been warned by Saudi Arabia of a genuine threat to Europe from al-Qaeda, the country's interior minister has said. Brice Hortefeux told French radio a message had been sent from Saudi intelligence officials that al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) was "without a doubt active, or aimed to be active." Mr. Hortefeux said the threat was real and directed at "the European continent and notably France." He added: "This is not about overestimating the threat or underestimating it. I am indicating, based on all these elements, that the threat is real." AQAP, an off-shoot of al-Qaeda believed to include Saudis and Yemenis, has stepped up attacks on Western targets in the past 12 months. The group, which has been based in Yemen since 2006, said it was behind a failed bombing attempt on a US plane in December. [More>>news.sky.com]

10.18.10 Terrorism and cyber attacks main threats to Britain

October 18 - Terrorism and cyber attacks are currently the main security threats facing Britain, the Government said today. The new National Security Strategy identifies four ''tier one'' risks which, it says, must be the Government's highest priority. The other major threats are a large scale accident or natural hazard such as pandemic flu and an international military crisis which could draw in the UK and its allies. A second series of "tier two" priorities include an attack by another state or its proxy using weapons of mass destruction, a civil war or other instability which terrorists could exploit to threaten the UK, and a significant increase in the level of organized crime. Also listed as a "tier two" priority is the threat of severe disruption to information received or transmitted by satellites, possibly as the result of a deliberate attack by another state. A large-scale conventional military attack on the UK is rated only as a "tier three" priority alongside disruption to oil and gas supplies and a large-scale radioactive release from a civil nuclear site. [More>>telegraph.co.uk]

10.18.10 Report: US presses China to stop Iran deals

WASHINGTON (AP) October 18 - The United States has asked Beijing to do more to stop Chinese companies from providing assistance and expertise to Iran's efforts to develop nuclear weapons and more powerful missiles, The Washington Post reported late Sunday. According to the newspaper, the Obama administration believes several Chinese companies are violating United Nations sanctions against Iran. An anonymous US official told the paper that Robert Einhorn, the State Department official who oversees the enforcement of sanctions against Iran, gave a "significant list" of such companies and banks to Chinese officials last month. A Chinese Embassy spokesman said his country would investigate the US charges. The US official did not name any of the Chinese companies or say how many were on the list. But he told the Post that US intelligence believes several Chinese companies and banks were involved in providing restricted technology to Iran, mostly for its missile program. [More>>foxnews.com]

10.18.10 The dangers of being a journalist in Iran

October 18 - Dozens of Iranian journalists are languishing in prison with scores more having recently fled the country. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's regime has been aggressive in its pursuit of critics and increasingly, foreign journalists are being rounded up as well. Mohammad Ghouchani, 34, is still a free man. But he may not be for much longer. The Iranian regime's security forces have been following the journalist's every move for weeks now. According to Ghouchani's colleagues in Tehran, it was only a week ago that Iranian agents called him on the phone. Their message? Drop the project or we'll arrest you. Few would be surprised were Ghouchani soon to be served a subpoena from the state prosecutor and forced to answer charges before the Islamic Revolutionary Court. Jail time, experience shows, could also be in his future all because he has taken on a tempting and delicate mission: He plans to resume publishing Ham-Mihan, a newspaper that was banned three years ago.

... Indeed, there is little doubt that the authorities will shut down Ham-Mihan again and arrest editor-in-chief Ghouchani, who has already spent half a year behind bars. While in jail, he found himself in very good company. Ever since the protests against Ahmadinejad's re-election in June of last year, prison cells have been bursting with critics of the regime
and journalists represent the largest professional group among the inmates. Over 120 employees of daily newspapers and some 20 bloggers have been detained, says Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam. From his home in exile, the cofounder of Iran Human Rights has been monitoring the "brutal oppression of freedom of speech." At least 50 reporters and photographers have fled abroad to escape the regime's agents, he says. Nobody knows exactly how many journalists are behind bars. Amiry-Moghaddam rattles off 30 names, including Emadeddin Baghi, who was sentenced to six years in prison by a revolutionary court. His crime: an interview with Grand Ayatollah Hossein-Ali Montazeri, who died last December and ranked among the most vociferous critics of the regime. It seems a bitter irony of history that the Islamic Republic, which emerged from the revolution against the dictatorial rule of the shah in 1979, is currently persecuting journalists more severely than virtually any other country in the world. [Full story>>spiegel.de]

10.18.10 Extreme weather forces Indonesia to import rice

(AFP) October 18 - Indonesia will be forced to import rice in bulk and reduce exports of other commodities after extreme weather harmed agriculture over the past few months, officials said Friday. Crop yields especially rice were harmed when the La Nina phenomenon significantly reduced the dry season period between April and September, said Indonesian Farmers Association secretary general Benny Pasaribu. "La Nina played a big role in decreasing agricultural output. It has caused flooding across Indonesia that also reduced production of some crops," he said. "If this condition persists, then crop output could sink further," he added. La Nina is a weather pattern that leads to stronger monsoons, greater rainfall and hurricanes in the Pacific basin.

"Growth in rice production has reached only two percent this year compared to 6.7 percent in 2009," said state logistics agency head Sutarto Alimoeso. "In order to maintain the stockpile of rice, the agency will import rice from Thailand and Vietnam," he added. Indonesia, the world's third largest rice producer, is expected to import up to 300,000 metric tones of rice in the country's first bulk purchase since 2007. Indonesian Cocoa Association chairman Zulhefi Sikumbang said La Nina had also caused many cocoa plants to be infected by fungus and eventually rot.

10.18.10 Egypt allows 'Viva Palestina' to leave Syria for al-Arish

October 18 - Aid convoy set to arrive in Egypt then continue journey by land to Gaza; organizer George Galloway still won't be allowed entry into country. Egypt on Monday approved the Viva Palestina flotilla to leave Syria and sail by Gaza en-route to al-Arish. The convoy is set to dock in the Egyptian port of al-Arish then continue its journey by land to Gaza. Egypt, however, was still expected not to allow convoy organizer George Galloway to enter the country. Hussam Zaki of the Egyptian Foreign Ministry confirmed last week that the convoy will be allowed access to Gaza however he insisted George Galloway, the British ex-parliamentarian leading the convoy, will not be allowed in the country and will remain as persona non grata. The main ship, carrying 380 activists from 42 countries, 147 vehicles and $5 million in medical aid departed from London September 18 and has been held at the Syrian port of Latakia for just over two weeks. Some of the passengers on board the flotilla include 40 people that were also onboard the Mavi Mamara aid ship which was involved in an IDF interception on May 31. [More>>jpost.com]

10.18.10 Somali pirates hold 26 foreign vessels: group

NAIROBI, Kenya (Xinhua) October 18 - Somali pirates are holding at least 26 foreign vessels plus one barge with at least 474 seafarers, an international maritime body Ecoterra International said on Monday. In a statement, the maritime body said among the 474 seafarers are an elderly British yachting couple and five new hostages from Somaliland who are languishing in the pirates' hands. "At least 26 foreign vessels plus one barge are kept in Somali (pirates) hands against the will of their owners as one Oct. 17, 16h00 UTC, while at least 474 hostages or captives including an elderly British yachting couple and the 5 new hostages from Somaliland suffer to be released," Ecoterra International said. However, the European Union Naval Force Somalia says the Somali pirates are currently holding 19 vessels, including the latest South Korean vessel. The figure, according to Ecoterra International, does not account for the smaller sea-jacked vessels from Yemen or Iran and those from countries considered perhaps less important countries.

"The smaller and older vessels often have even a larger crew than large modern vessels
and it is the well-being of the seafarers that counts not the insured vessels," the maritime body said. "In any case it is still the highest number of abducted vessels at the Horn of Africa since all times and the scourge started to sore immediately with the inception of foreign naval forces in these waters since 2008." The development came after the pirates hijacked a Kenyan- flagged South Korean fishing vessel off the coastal town of Lamu. The Golden Wave also known by Keummi 305 was captured on Oct. 9 while fishing 10 miles off the coast of Lamu, Kenya. The Keummi has 43 crew members. Two are from Korea, two from China and the remaining 39 are Kenyan, the report said. Lamu lies on the north of the Kenyan coast and is near the border with Somalia. [More>>xinhuanet.com]

10.18.10 Afghan gunmen kill 9 guards protecting NATO convoy

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) October 18 - Gunmen killed nine Afghan workers who were guarding a NATO supply convoy in the south of the country, police said Monday. The attack in Gereshk district happened on Sunday night, said the deputy police chief for Helmand province, Kamaluddin Khan. Military supply convoys are regularly attacked in Afghanistan, where they are seen as an easier target for insurgents than NATO bases. The shootings come about a week after trucks bearing NATO supplies for troops began flowing again through the important Khyber Pass crossing from Pakistan into Afghanistan. Pakistan had closed the Torkham crossing in protest at a NATO helicopter strike that killed two Pakistani border guards. During the 11-day blockade, about 150 trucks were destroyed and some drivers and police were injured in near-daily attacks in Pakistan. NATO, however, said its supplies were not interrupted as it simply sent supplies through other routes such as crossings in the west or further south. Separately, an airstrike by international coalition forces killed four suspected Taliban fighters who were planting a bomb, said Abdul Jabar Pardeli, the police chief in neighboring Nimroz province. A Taliban commander was among those killed by Sunday night's strike, he said. [More>>indianexpress.com]

10.18.10 Rush hour bomb kills three in Afghan city

HERAT, Aftghanistan (AFP) October 18 - A bomb attack at rush hour on Monday killed at least three civilians and wounded eight other people in Afghanistan's western city of Herat, an official said. An improvised explosive device (IED), the weapon of choice for Taliban militants fighting against the government and foreign troops, detonated close to a police checkpost, provincial spokesman Naqeebullah Arween told AFP. "Three civilians were killed and another eight civilians, including one policeman, were wounded in the blast today," Arween told AFP. Herat is one of the most prosperous cities in Afghanistan and the west is relatively peaceful compared to the south, where the Taliban are in control of several districts and where there has been heavy fighting. [More>>arabtimesonline.com]

10.18.10 UAE high court: Beat your wife, just don't bruise her

October 18 - The highest court in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) ruled that a man is allowed to beat his wife and children as long as he does not leave bruises or other marks, local newspaper The National reported Monday. "Although the [law] permits the husband to use his right [to discipline], he has to abide by the limits of this right," wrote Chief Justice Falah al Hajeri in a ruling issued this month and released in a court document Sunday. The limit, as the court defines it, is physical evidence of a beating that takes the accepted punishment to a more severe level. According to Islamic law, the man of the house is permitted to use physical discipline against his family if admonishing them and abstaining from sex with his wife do not work. Judges were forced to clarify the legal boundaries of beating after a UAE man slapped and kicked his daughter and wife, leaving bruises and facial injuries on them. [More>>foxnews.com]

10.17.10 Multicultural society has failed, says Chancellor Merkel

(Reuters) Germany's attempts to create a multicultural society have "utterly failed," Chancellor Angela Merkel has said, urging immigrants to do more to integrate, including learning to speak German. Germany's attempt to create a multicultural society has "utterly failed," Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Saturday, adding fuel to a debate over immigration and Islam polarizing her conservative camp. Speaking to a meeting of young members of her Christian Democrats (CDU), Merkel said allowing people of different cultural backgrounds to live side by side without integrating had not worked in a country that is home to some four million Muslims.

"This (multicultural) approach has failed, utterly failed," Merkel told the meeting in Potsdam, south of Berlin.Merkel faces pressure from within her CDU to take a tougher line on immigrants who don't show a willingness to adapt to German society and her comments appeared intended to pacify her critics. She said too little had been required of immigrants in the past and repeated her usual line that they should learn German in order to get by in school and have opportunities on the labour market.

The debate over foreigners in Germany has shifted since former central banker Thilo Sarrazin published a book accusing Muslim immigrants of lowering the intelligence of German society. Sarrazin was censured for his views and dismissed from the Bundesbank, but his book proved highly popular and polls showed a majority of Germans agreed with the thrust of his arguments. Merkel has tried to accommodate both sides of the debate, talking tough on integration but also telling Germans that they must accept that mosques have become part of their landscape.
[More>>france24.com; See other details,

aljazeera.net, October 17, "German multiculturalism 'failing"
: ... In an interview on Saturday, Abdullah Gul, Turkey's president, encouraged the Turkish community living in Germany to better integrate into German society. In comments published in the Suedeutsche Zeitung, a German newspaper, Gul said: "When one doesn't speak the language of the country in which one lives that doesn't serve anyone, neither the person concerned, the country, nor the society. "That is why I tell them at every opportunity that they should learn German, and speak it fluently and without an accent. That should start at nurseries." Gul said that if Mesut Ozil, a German footballer of Turkish descent, "had asked me which side to play for, I would have encouraged him to play for Germany." The president said Ozul, who scored one of the German goals in their October 8 defeat of Turkey 3-0 in a Euro 2012 group A qualifying match in Berlin, is "an example of very successful integration."...

10.17.10 Defiant millions take to the streets in battle over Nicolas Sarkozy's cuts

October 17 -The return of students and workers in mass protests made the right shiver. But there was no battle of the barricades. The clouds hung heavily over the Place de la République and the statue of Marianne, France's heroine, was draped with demonstrators' balloons. As protesters marched on the historic Parisian site of proletarian revolt, 17-year-old Romane scowled at the rain-filled sky. "At least this is proof we're not just here for the good weather," she said. On her jacket was pinned a placard scrawled with marker pen. "Carla, we're like you," it read. "We've been screwed by Sarko too." Nicolas Sarkozy had feared that the rentrée the time after the holidays when France returns to normal would be warm, encouraging protesting masses on to the wide, Haussmann-designed boulevards, and he was right to be worried.

Languishing in the polls and engaged in an almighty battle to push through his flagship pension reform
taking the retirement age from 60 to 62 the man once cast by some as the Gallic Margaret Thatcher is facing his most testing showdown with the notoriously bellicose unions. The demonstration that drew people out in their hundreds of thousands was the fifth since last month, and Tuesday will bring another. Last week the protest movement snowballed, with strikes that closed schools, led to flights being cancelled and stopped trains. Fuel refineries halted production and parts of the country are already suffering shortages. [More>>guardian.co.uk; See related story,

independent.co.uk, October 17, "Belgian strike cripples Eurostar service"
: Almost all the Eurostar services between the UK and Brussels scheduled to run tomorrow have been cancelled because of industrial action in Belgium. The 24-hour strike will start at 10pm today, causing considerable disruption throughout Belgium. A train due to leave London at 7.34pm has been brought forward to 5.27pm, in order to arrive in Brussels before the start of the strike.

10.17.10 Mine blast kills 26 in China

October 17 - Rescuers are desperately trying to reach 11 miners still trapped underground after a gas explosion killed 26 at a coal mine in Henan province, China. Family members of 11 trapped Chinese miners have gathered outside the Pingyu Coal and Electric Co pit compound in Yuzhou City hoping for news of their loved ones. Earlier today, officials said that 239 workers had managed to escape, but that the death toll had risen to 26. As a result of the explosion the pit is smothered in more than 2,500 tones of coal dust, making trips down the shaft to reach those still trapped alive difficult for rescuers. Authorities on site said an over-concentration of underground gas caused the deadly explosion on Saturday. The underground gas concentration in the mine reached 40 percent, over 40 times the normal concentration level of 0.8 to 1 percent, according to state media. Police and security guards have prohibited worker's family members or media from entering the pit compound. [More w/video>>telegraph.co.uk]

10.17.10 US officials told me to 'get lost' : Headley's wife

NEW YORK, October 17 - "Get lost" was what the US officials in Islamabad told the young Moroccan wife of 26/11 accused David Headley when she informed them that her husband was planning a terror attack in India with the help of LeT. Less than a year before 26/11 attack, one of Headley's three wives, Faiza Outalha, had two meetings with American officials in Islamabad in which she told them that her husband had friends in the Lashkar-e-Toiba and his business trips to India never amounted to much, according to The New York Times. "I told them, he's either a terrorist, or he's working for you," she recalled saying to American officials at the US Embassy in Islamabad.

"Indirectly, they told me to get lost." "I told them anything I could do to get their attention," she told the NYT. "It was as if I was shouting, 'This guy was a terrorist! You have to do something.' " 27-year-old Outlaha also claimed that she showed the US authorities photos of Headley and her stay at the Taj Mahal Hotel, where they stayed twice in April and May 2007. The stay is confirmed by hotel records. A senior administration official confirmed Outalha's meeting but said she could not give any details to her warnings. "The texture of the meeting was that her husband was involved with bad people, and they were planning jihad," the official said. "But she gave no details about who was involved, or what they planned to target." In a statement, National Security Council spokesman Mike Hammer on Saturday said that "The United States regularly provided threat information to Indian officials in 2008 before the attacks in Mumbai."
[More>>indianexpress.com; See original story, nytimes.com, October 17, "US had warnings on plotter of Mumbai attack."]

10.17.10 Pakistan Taliban eye toxic gas for attacks: Intel

LAHORE, October 17 - The Tehreek-e- Taliban Pakistan (TTP) is planning to carry out terrorist attacks using poisonous gases, Pakistani intelligence agencies have warned. According to intelligence reports, terrorists may target sensitive installations, important buildings, busy shopping malls, markets, public places, mosques and other places of worship. Sources said that the warnings came after the intelligence agencies collected information from intercepts of conversations among the TTP militants. After receiving the reports , the interior ministry has directed police to make all necessary and foolproof security arrangements to avert any untoward incident, Daily Times reports. ANI

US drones kill 10 militants in Pak

Two suspected US drone strikes in Pakistan's tribal region along the Afghan border have claimed 10 lives, security officials said. A drone aircraft fired six missiles into two suspected militant hideouts in Meer Ali area of North Waziristan, a known hotbed of militants.

10.17.10 Karachi violence kills 15; hurts dozens

KARACHI, Pakistan, October 17 - In a fresh spate of violence that erupted in the metropolis city one day ahead of by-polls has left at least 15 people killed and dozens others injured while unknown armed men forced shops in different areas to close, Geo News reported Saturday. Meanwhile, five vehicles including an OB van of a private television channel have been reportedly torched in different areas during the violence-ravaged incidents. The violence spread in several parts of the city after unidentified attackers opened fire and injured a man named Zafar in PS-94 constituency of Orangi Town where by-election is due to be held today. In another firing incident at Katti Pahari area where armed men opened indiscriminate firing on a passenger bus, killing a youth identified as Tausif and injuring two others. [More>>thenews.com.pk; See also foxnews.com, October 17, "Suspected political violence kills 25 in Pakistan."]

10.17.10 Iran arrests six Afghan military officers, soldier

TEHRAN (AFP) October 17 - Iran has arrested six Afghan military officers and a soldier who said they were hunting for Taleban militants in the border province of Sistan-Baluchestan, ISNA news agency reported on Sunday. Border police arrested the seven Afghan military personnel 50 metres (yards) inside Iranian territory, police commander Hossein Zolfaghari said, quoted by ISNA, without giving a date. Zolfaghari said the arrested group said they were "patrolling the area and hunting for Taleban (militants), and that they had no intention to enter Iranian soil." Sistan-Baluchestan in southeast Iran bordering Afghanistan and Pakistan is an area rife with a Sunni Baluchi insurgency against Teheran, tribal unrest and drug smuggling. [>khaleejtimes.com]

10.17.10 Ahmadinejad backs new nuclear talks with West

TEHRAN (AP) October 17 - Move is the latest in Tehran's intensified push to get negotiations going again. Iran's president on Sunday endorsed the resumption of talks with the international community about his country's nuclear program, the latest in Tehran's recently intensified push to get those negotiations going again. The talks foundered a year ago and months later, a fourth round of UN sanctions was imposed on Iran over its refusal to halt uranium enrichment — a program the West is concerned masks Iranian ambitions for making nuclear weapons...At the rally in Ardebil, Ahmadinejad warned the West the talks with Iran would not make progress unless the West clarifies its stance over Israel's alleged nuclear arsenal — an apparent attempt to deflect attention from Iran's nuclear program. [Full story>>msnbc.msn.com; See also

haaretz.com, October 17, "Ahmadinejad: Israel and its allies are all on their way to hell"
: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Sunday said that Israel would "soon go to hell" and called on the West to drop support for the Jewish state. "Grounds are being prepared for the Zionist regime [Israel] to go to hell soon and any country supporting this regime will join it on its trip to hell as well," Ahmadinejad said in a speech in Ardebil in north-western Iran, carried live by the news network Khabar. The comments Sunday fall in line with a series of provocative statements by the Iranian leader about Israel several times in recent years, sparking international anger. Among others, he advocated relocating Israel to Europe or North America, and questioned the dimensions of the Holocaust during World War Two. The remarks by the Iranian president came in the wake of a recent and controversial visit to Lebanon, in which Ahmadinejad voiced his support of what he called Lebanon's resistance of Israeli aggression...

10.17.10 Two coalition soldiers killed in Afghanistan: ISAF

KABUL, Afghanistan, October 17 - Two coalition soldiers died in separate attacks in Afghanistan on Saturday, the International Security Assistance Force said, deepening NATO losses in a critical year of the campaign against the Taliban. The first solider died following an improvised explosive device in the south of the country, while the second was killed in an "insurgent attack" in the north, ISAF said without releasing any further details. It is ISAF policy not to identify the nationalities of dead soldiers. [More>>thenews.com.pk; See more details, en.rian.ru (RIA Novosti) October 17, "One Swedish soldier killed, two injured in Afghanistan."]

10.17.10 Three militants, four soldiers killed in Yemen clashes

ADEN, Yemen (Reuters) October 17 - Yemeni aircraft bombed al-Qaeda positions in southern Yemen on Sunday, a government official said, after militants ambushed a tank column, killing four soldiers. Yemeni aircraft bombed al-Qaeda positions in southern Yemen on Sunday, a government official said, after militants ambushed a tank column, killing four soldiers. Three suspected members of al-Qaeda's regional wing were also killed in the clashes on Sunday in the Mudiyah district in Abyan province on the Arabian Sea coast, where the army has battled militants in recent months, the official told Reuters. One man was killed and two women and a child were injured in the air raid, a local official and residents told Reuters. On Saturday, a car bomb wounded a senior intelligence officer and his assistant in Abyan, a security source said, and a government website said two militants died in a botched suicide attack with a car on a security patrol in Mudiyah. [More>>gulfnews.com; See related story,

alarabiya.net, October 17, "Al-Qaeda financier in Yemen arrested" :
Yemeni security forces arrested in Sanaa airport al-Qaeda financier Saleh al-Rimi while on his way from Saudi Arabia, where he permanently resides. Meanwhile two intelligence officers were critically injured when a car owned by one of them exploded in front of the intelligence office in the city of Zinjibar, the capital of Abyan governorate in south-western Yemen. Three soldiers were also killed in an ambush set by al-Qaeda insurgents and which targeted a military convoy on the road to the village of Mudiyah.

...The Yemeni Interior Minister Major General Motahar Rashad al-Masri that the security officer who killed a French company manager in Sanaa has links to al-Qaeda and declared the murder terrorist and not criminal as sources mentioned earlier. In the same vein, the Yemeni Interior Ministry offered a 20 million riyal ($ 100,000) reward for information on eight militants linked to al-Qaeda, state media reported Sunday. The eight are Amin al-Othmani, Bashir al-Haleesi, Shawki al-Baadani, Abul Ellah al-Mesbahi, Abdul Hamid al-Hubaishi, Mohamed al-Nasheri, Mosleh al-Haleesi, and Yusuf Zayoud...


    *Visitor statistics on maravot.com from 1&1. com. monthly visitors between 37,000-45,0000.
    Privacy Policy: We do not store any personal data from you. We have no way of knowing any vital information about you not even your name. Third-party distribution: We do not distribute information about your site usage to any third party. We are not responsible for the content of links from our site. Usage data: supplied by our Web Hosting service, 1and1.com, which consists of usage reports, such as page views / impressions and web pages visited, visitors' servers and geographical data (ISP's and country of origin).

    Maravot's Homepage

    Launched: 10.25.04 / 11.02.04 – | — |
    Updated: 10.17.10; 10.18.10; 10.19.10; 10.20.10; 10.21.10; 10.22.10; 10.25.10; 10.26.10

  • Copyright © 1981-2010 Maravot. All rights reserved
    Copyright© 1981-2010 Mel Copeland. All rights reserved
    Background: tile from Cicero's villa (Marcus Tullius Cicero 106 B.C.- 43 B.C.)