discarded lies: monday, march 19, 2018 8:48 pm zst
grinding the peppercorns of truth
daily archive: 05/06/2005
zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
What would you say to her
A sixteen year old girl in Britain became pregnant with twins. She had an abortion in her sixth week of pregnancy but the abortion only killed one baby. Stacy didn't realise she was still pregnant until her thirty-third week and she gave birth to a baby girl. She's now suing the NHS for money to help her raise the daughter she didn't expect to have.

But let's forget about the money. What will she tell her daughter when she grows up? And how will her daughter deal, later in life, with the fact that she was an unwanted child whose mother had tried to kill her?
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Is Russia the next 'colored' revolution?
If the National Bolshevik Party has anything to say about it, yes. I like the looks of them.
Increasingly provocative

If the political orientation of NBP in the last couple years changed visibly, the tactics of direct action remain unchanged and became even more provocative. On 2 August 2004, a group of NBP activists broke into the office of Health and Social Development Minister Mikhail Zurabov and occupied it for several hours, demanding Zurabov’s resignation for his responsibility for the unpopular social-benefits reforms, the NBP’s website announced. Using flash-mob tactics, the NBP called its followers to gather around the office to support the action. Eventually, FSB arrested most of the participants of the action and on 12 December seven NBP activists were each sentenced to five years in prison for the “seizure of a government office and mass disturbances". On 14 December 2004, an even bigger group of NBP members occupied the presidential-administration visitors’ room in much the same manner, to protest Putin’s political reforms, nbp-info.ru reported. Thirty-nine members of NBP have been arrested and are still awaiting trial. They have been accused of “attempting to seize power and organize a mass disturbance". If convicted, they could face two to eight years in prison. They are scheduled to face trial in August.
On the eve of revolution?

Meanwhile, the NBP continues to defend the “right of the people to revolution". The weekly Limonka, No. 271, declared on 16 April that Russia is on the eve of revolution. “The people awoke during perestroika, and fell asleep for a while, now they have awakened again to discover what kind of moral monsters are governing them. And they rebel against these monsters. Moral complaints against the authorities are the main engine of the colored revolution." Some political analysts believe that the only kind of revolution that can happen in Russian is a leftist-socialist and/or nationalist-patriotic revolution. If that is indeed the case, NBP, with its 10 years of experience of confrontation with government, its own list of political prisoners, and tactics of direct action, will certainly be at the eye of the revolutionary storm.
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Let Trump rebuild the WTC
Let's make a deal with The Donald. lawhawk says we should take the Ground Zero rebuilding away from Daniel Libeskind, and give it to Donald Trump. He's certainly convinced me.
Trump has subsumed his huge ego for various projects around the city, including restoring Wollman Rink in Central Park. He knows that the public would not tolerate his plastering of his name all over the WTC site, but that the public would laud him if he was able to get towers built on the WTC site. Libeskind doesn't get the NY real estate market, let alone the political machinations within the market. Trump has managed to build a tremendous number of Class A properties throughout the city, including nearly a dozen buildings on the Upper West Side alongside the Hudson River. He knows how to deal with real estate developers, community activists that may oppose his plans, and politicians in order to get his buildings constructed.
Read it all, and follow his link to the original NYPost story, too. Trump has been pressing Pataki to rebuild twin towers (as it should be).
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Palestinians voting again
With higher than 70% turnout, Hamas got 33 percent of ballots cast and Fatah got 56%. Out of 84 communities, the local elections led to Fatah in charge of 45 towns, and Hamas 23, with 16 more towns going to smaller parties. Hamas won each and every single one of 15 council seats in 45,000 strong Qalqilya, and a majority in the two other biggest cities holding elections, Rafah and Beit Lahiya (both in Gaza).

I think it's interesting that Fatah managed to hold on to an absolute majority and hold Hamas down to 33% of the votes. Gaza has long been something of a Hamas stronghold. There are about twice as many Palestinians in the West Bank as in Gaza, and Fatah got control of about twice as many communities as Hamas. What makes this interesting is that Qalqilya is in the West Bank right on the border with Israel, and Hamas completely swept it. Meanwhile, voter turnout was 70% in the West Bank and 80% in Gaza, so you'd think Hamas would gain a small benefit from its higher turnout in its stronghold. If turnout had been equal, Fatah's lead might have been even better than 2-1.

The healthy showing of third parties is encouraging as well; Palestinians aren't quite unified in the singleminded quest of Hamas to slaughter Jews (though a worryingly large wedge of them, a third, are). This bears watching, but it's a good sign that a Fatah-controlled PA held fair elections that allowed its historical rival for authenticity, Hamas, to gain legitimate control over several population centers. Of course, it's Hamas and I wish them nothing but destruction. But like Hezbollah, they seem too well entrenched to uproot considering the level of political will in Israel and the PA. Perhaps their inclusion into the political process will either moderate them, or cause them to have their chance in the sun, fail spectacularly, and be punished at the polls for it. Either way, it was worth a try. Parliamentary elections are this July, and Abbas might be forced to bring them into his coalition to form a government. Time will tell if the terrorist tiger can change his spots. I say no, but I'd love to be wrong.

UPDATE: another thing to keep in mind is that Gaza's population is younger than the West Bank's, as it has a higher birthrate. So the percentage of eligible voters must be smaller. Hamas really pulled off a small miracle in terms of turnout, by managing to bring out 80% of the voters in Gaza, and they still couldn't get above that one-third level. Small comfort.
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Jews regaining confidence in Russia
I'm not sure what to make of this. I'm afraid it'll all end in horror, as from time immemorial in Russia. I hope the optimism is well-founded.
MOSCOW, Russia - Looking out from his sixteenth-floor office in a Moscow skyscraper, Arsen Revazov can hardly believe that this is a country where it was once illegal to learn Hebrew or celebrate Passover.

He emigrated to Israel 15 years ago — one of a million Jews who fled the Soviet Union to escape institutionalised anti-Semitism and economic stagnation. But today he is back in Moscow — with his wife and two children — living an openly Jewish life and running an advertising business. “I just realised that there were so many more opportunities in Russia than in Israel. It is like the difference between New York and Arizona," Mr Revazov, 38, told The Times. “Almost all my friends in Israel have come back, too."

An estimated 100,000 Jews have returned to Russia in the past few years, sparking a dramatic renaissance of Jewish life in a country with a long history of anti-Semitism.

President Putin will cement Russia’s new relationship with its Jewish community today when he begins the first visit to Israel by a Soviet or Russian leader.

“This sends a message to the world that the Moscow-Arab coalition is over," Berl Lazar, one of Russia’s two chief rabbis, said. “It’s eerie that it is happening at Passover. Here, during our holiday, the Russian President is visiting the Holy Land."

The Soviet Union was one of the first states to recognise Israel in 1948, but later severed ties and backed Arab regimes to balance US support for Jerusalem.

Relations were reopened in 1987, when President Gorbachev allowed Soviet Jews to emigrate. Roughly one in four Israelis is now of Russian origin.

Five years ago, Rabbi Lazar opened a seven-storey, $20 million Jewish centre with a synagogue, swimming pool and kosher restaurant, built mostly with donations from abroad. Last year, work started on a bigger, $100 million complex, including a school, a medical centre and Russia’s first Jewish museum, using funds mostly raised in Russia. The land was given by Yuri Luzhkov, the Mayor of Moscow, in the clearest sign yet of government support.

“At first people were afraid to give their names to the centre. They had had enough trouble in the past," Rabbi Lazar said. “Today, being Jewish here is like anywhere else in the world."

FJC | News | Once desperate to leave, now Jews are returning to Russia, land of opportunity
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Chinese economic espionage in France and Germany
We're not the only ones suffering economic espionage by the Chinese. What makes this sweet is that the French have long spied on us and stolen secrets. They even have a school to teach economic espionage, which they consider a legitimate tactic against filthy Anglo-Saxon capitalism. I hope they're rife with spies stealing all their best stuff. Serves 'em right.
VERSAILLES, France, May 3 (AFP) - French police on Tuesday were analyzing the computer files of a 22-year-old Chinese woman placed under investigation on suspicion of spying on her employer, French car parts maker Valeo.
The woman, identified as Li Li Whuang, was placed in preventive detention last week and later thrown behind bars on Friday after Valeo filed a complaint for "abuse of confidence" and "illegal database intrusion".
Being placed under investigation in France is one step short of being formally charged.
The Chinese national, who has denied the accusations, had worked since February as an intern in Valeo's research and development division in the southwest Paris suburbs.
At the same time, the woman -- who already holds diplomas in mathematics, applied physics and fluid mechanics -- was studying at a university in Compiegne, northeast of the French capital.
During a search of the woman's home on Friday, police found six computers and two hard drives with a "huge capacity" that contained material considered confidential by Valeo's management.
It is believed that the woman may have copied features of a number of cars made by different companies that are still on the drawing board.
"She was a good little soldier," a source close to the investigation said Tuesday, adding that preliminary evidence taken from the computers implicated the woman.
Chinese Trade Minister Bo Xilai, on a visit to Paris, said he was unfamiliar with the details of the case, but told reporters: "If it turned out to be true, it would be truly regrettable."
Valeo chief executive Thierry Morin told a shareholders' meeting that it was up to the French courts to resolve the matter, adding: "Let's not use the term 'industrial espionage'."
"A young person was caught with a laptop containing information on which she was working," said the head of Valeo, which has nine joint ventures in China.
"At Valeo, we have a very strict rule which states that work-related data must remain at official work stations and not on laptops. We immediately implemented security measures and launched a legal complaint," Morin explained.
But one company source who asked not to be named told the French newspaper Liberation: "One thing is certain -- she had access to confidential files and she copied computer files that she later brought home with her."
The Chinese woman first raised the suspicions of an executive, who noticed that she frequently walked around the office with her laptop computer.
She also spent "much too much time at the computers, more than she needed to spend to complete her assignments," the source told Liberation.
The company filed a formal complaint last Tuesday, and the woman -- who had lived in France for three years -- was taken into preventive custody on Wednesday.
A source close to the inquiry described the woman, who speaks German, Spanish, English, French and some Arabic, as "brilliant" and of "exceptional competence".
"For the time being, we don't know exactly what data she might have copied," another anonymous source at Valeo told Le Parisien newspaper.
"Our interns don't just make photocopies. We assign them to work on interesting subjects that are more or less confidential, especially if they are exceptionally bright," the source said.
Valeo said last month that it expected its sales in China to rise five-fold to 1.3 billion euros (1.67 billion dollars) by 2010. It recorded sales of 250 million euros in China last year.
The auto parts maker is looking for more partnerships in China, particularly in the wiring and security systems business, to expand on its nine joint ventures, Morin told reporters in Beijing in April.
Why would someone so brilliant do something so stupid? I'll quote Paul Moore, an expert on Chinese espionage techniques: "What the Chinese intelligence do is they get essentially good people to do bad things." Click the link to get more of Paul Moore's thinking on Chinese espionage strategies. (Thanks to Joe Katzman for the Paul Moore link).

UPDATE: Germany too! Geostrategy-Direct [subscription-only material]:
Germany's BfV domestic intelligence service recently uncovered Chinese and Russian spies gathering military secrets.

The Chinese intelligence agent was posing as a diplomat posted to the Chinese embassy. He attempted to obtain sensitive information from a former employee of the Dynamit Nobel defense manufacturer.

The former employee, identified as Hans I. from Bonn, offered to sell the Chinese agent military documents on an advanced ammunition.

The case was uncovered after the Germans intercepted communications from the Bonn annex of the Chinese embassy, the Munich-based Focus magazine reported.

The man was observed meeting with the Chinese agent April 1 and was arrested a week later. The Chinese diplomat is expected to be expelled from Germany.
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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Holocaust Knowledge
Survey: Americans trail Europe in knowledge about the Holocaust
Sixty years after the end of World War II, just 44 percent of U.S. respondents in an American Jewish Committee survey identified Auschwitz, Dachau and Treblinka as concentration or death camps.

By contrast, 91 percent of Swedish, 88 percent of Austrian, 79 percent of Polish, 78 percent of French, 77 percent of German and 53 percent of British respondents correctly labeled the camps.

The AJCommittee study, obtained by JTA in advance of its slated Wednesday release, further finds that only a third of Americans know that 6 million Jews were murdered in the Holocaust. Among Europeans, 55 percent of Swedish respondents know the 6 million number, as do 49 percent of French and German respondents, 41 percent of Austrian respondents and 39 percent of British respondents. Only 30 percent of Polish respondents know this number.
A majority of respondents, in both the United States and Europe, said the Holocaust made clear the importance of Israel’s existence as a haven for Jews, and said keeping the memory of the Holocaust strong is important. Most also expressed support for compulsory lessons in schools about the Nazi extermination of Jews.

Asked about anti-Semitism in their country, 11 percent of Americans said it is a very serious problem, 56 percent said it is somewhat of a problem and 23 percent said it isn’t a problem at all.

Only 9 percent of British respondents said anti-Semitism is a very serious problem, with 47 percent calling it somewhat of a problem and 32 percent saying it isn’t a problem at all. Among Austrians, 8 percent said anti-Semitism is a very serious problem, 55 percent said it is somewhat of a problem and 33 percent said it isn’t a problem at all.

Respondents also were asked whether they agree with the statement that “Jews exert too much influence on world events." Twenty-two percent of the Polish respondents said they strongly agree with the statement, as did 15 percent of the Austrians, 12 percent of the Germans, 10 percent of the British, 8 percent of the French and the Americans and 3 percent of the Swedes.

Asked whether they were very sympathetic, somewhat sympathetic, somewhat unsympathetic, very unsympathetic or neutral in their attitudes toward Jews, the number of respondents in the “very unsympathetic" category did not top 1 percent in any group.

Three-quarters of the Austrian respondents said they were neutral, as did 69 percent of German, 59 percent of Polish, 55 percent of Swedish, 53 percent of French and 37 percent of British respondents.

Among Americans, 30 percent said they were very sympathetic, 25 percent somewhat sympathetic, 3 percent somewhat unsympathetic, 1 percent very unsympathetic and 34 percent neutral.
The survey was carried out between March and April 2005 among 6,948 people reached by phone. The margin of error in each country was 3 percentage points.

A public opinion poll taken in April in Russia found that four out of 10 Muscovites aren’t sure what the Holocaust was. Fifty-seven percent of respondents said they knew what the Holocaust was, 15 percent had heard the term but weren’t sure exactly what it meant and 28 percent did not know what the Holocaust was.
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