14 June 2004

Never missing an opportunity to miss an opportunity

[source, source]

Terrorists in the Palestinian Authority-controlled town of Jenin, in northern Shomron (Samaria), opened fire at and inside the local United Nations office, in protest of the small size of the apartments being built for them. The UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) is in the process of building the new houses to replace the slums damaged during the IDF’s anti-terror Operation Defensive Shield in 2002. The operation is being funded by a $27 million contribution from the Persian Gulf Emirates,

Although the houses are much fancier and sturdier than the old houses, they are 15% smaller, in order to make room for wider streets […]

UNRWA’s spokesman in Judea and Samaria said that five Arab gunmen approached UNWRA offices and fired at the building last week before entering the offices and firing shots into the rooms. This was the third such attack on UN offices and crew in Jenin camp in the past half year. Complaints dealt not only with the size of the housing, but also with the slow speed and accusations that senior Palestinian Authority officials had stolen some of the financial donations to the camp.

One of the gunmen complained that the 180-square-meter (1,900 square feet) apartment he had been given - much larger than the typical Israeli apartment - was too small for his wife and him. “When we have children, this apartment will be too small,” he reportedly told the UN staff.

The UNRWA clerks, contractors and planners have halted all construction until their security can be guaranteed.

Is there anything counter-productive that the Palestinians haven’t tried?

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Berkeley comes out for silencing the Sierra Club

[source, source]

Now therefore, be it resolved that the Council of the City of Berkeley supports amending the United States and California Constitutions to declare that corporations are not granted the protections or rights of persons, and supports amending the United States and California Constitutions to declare that the expenditure of corporate money is not a form of constitutionally protected speech.

So much for free speech for newspapers and non-profit organizations, which are corporations as well.

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OK, that's seriously embarassing

[source, source]

WASHINGTON — A U.S. State Department report that incorrectly showed a decline last year in terrorism worldwide was a “big mistake,” Secretary of State Colin Powell said yesterday.


Mr. Waxman (D-California) asked for an explanation, and Mr. Powell called last week to say the mistakes were unintentional. “He says it wasn’t politically motivated, so I will accept that,” Mr. Waxman said after their conversation. But he added: “We are still left with the fact that this report is useless until it is corrected.”

The April report said attacks had declined last year to 190, down from 198 in 2002 and 346 in 2001. The 2003 figure would have been the lowest level in 34 years and a 45-per-cent drop since 2001, Mr. Bush’s first year as president.


“There’s a new terrorist-threat information centre that compiles this data under the CIA. And we are still trying to determine what went wrong with the data and why we didn’t catch it in the State Department,” Mr. Powell said yesterday.

“It’s a very big mistake. And we are not happy about this big mistake.”

The department has said that one of the mistakes was that only part of 2003 was taken into account.

Majorly lame. Only counted part of the year? I’m not sure I wouldn’t prefer clever dishonesty to this kind of blatant incompetence.

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Voters say EUck!

[source, source]

VOTERS last night gave Brussels a two-fingered salute and handed anti-EU rebels a raucous new voice in the European Parliament.

The UK Independence Party made sweeping gains at Tory and Labour expense on a blatantly aggressive vow to pull Britain out of the European Union.

All across Europe, voters were giving Brussels the cold shoulder.

Last night there were fears in the EU capital that the explosion of anti-EU feeling could wreck the planned European Constitution altogether.

In both France and Germany the ruling parties suffered humiliating defeats. And across Europe the election of 732 MEPs attracted an embarrassingly low 44.6 per cent turnout.

I’m waiting for the flood of “we must ask why they hate us” articles. That’s the response the EUlite suggest for other people for this type of disagreement, right?

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Self-inflicted propaganda

[source, source]

DUBAI, June 13 (Reuters) - A purported al Qaeda videotape posted on an Islamist website on Sunday claims to show the killing of a U.S. employee in the Saudi capital Riyadh last week.

“The murder of the Jewish American Robert Jacob, who worked for the Vinnell espionage firm,” a statement announcing the video on the Website says.

The video shows a man who seems to be a Westerner fall to the ground in front of a garage as two men holding guns run towards him.

What we have here, is a failure to communicate. Isn’t this the kind of propaganda we used to write about our enemies? Now our enemies write and distribute it themselves? I suppose they have to distribute it, since our local media will publish hate propaganda only at our own troops.

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