Archive for February 3rd, 2015

03/02/2015

The Three Roles of the Arab Peace Initiative

Human Wrongs Watch

By Walid Salem*, 2 February 2015 – TRANSCEND Media Service

In the current context, almost 13 years after its initiation and after the passing away of King Abdallah of Saudi Arabia who originally initiated it, the Arab Peace Initiative is seen to have the following three roles:

**Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount, in the Old City of Jerusalem. | Author: Godot13 | Wikimedia Commons

**Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount, in the Old City of Jerusalem. | Author: Godot13 | Wikimedia Commons

First: Getting the Israeli political arena to move forwards on accepting the API as a point of departure to a comprehensive Middle East peace, starting from the operationalization of it in the Israeli-Palestinian track.

Second: Use the good offices of the API Follow-Up Committee to elevate Palestine to statehood internationally, in order to create better symmetrical position to the Palestinians with Israel in any future negotiations.

Third: Call for an API based regional approach that can play the role of support for the Palestinians and present incentives to Israel in order to move the peace process forward.

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03/02/2015

Zionists All

Human Wrongs Watch

By Uri Avnery*

Uri Avnery

Uri Avnery

MANY TIMES people ask me: “Are you a Zionist?”

My stock answer is: “Depends on what you mean by Zionism.”

This is quite sincere. The term Zionism can mean many different things. Like the term socialism, for example. Francois Hollande is a socialist. So was Joe Stalin. Any resemblance?

WHEN I was young, there was a joke making the rounds in Germany: “A Zionist is a Jew who asks a second Jew for money in order to settle a third Jew in Palestine.” My father was such a Zionist. That was before the Nazis came to power, or course. I suspect that this definition applies nowadays to many American Zionists.

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03/02/2015

‘When you collect everything, you understand nothing’ – Snowden

Human Wrongs Watch

3 February 2015 (RT)* — National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden answered questions from Canadian students on Monday, telling them that mass surveillance can actually harm the ability to prevent terrorist attacks while also being detrimental to personal privacy.

**"Edward Snowden-2" by Laura Poitras / Praxis Films. Licensed under CC BY 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

**”Edward Snowden-2″ by Laura Poitras / Praxis Films. Licensed under CC BY 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Speaking at Upper Canada College in Toronto via webcam from Russia, Snowden was joined by journalist Glenn Greenwald as the pair fielded questions from high school students.

When asked about mass domestic surveillance – which new reports show Canada is engaged in – Snowden argued that the practice could divert attention and resources from more focused efforts that would yield better results.

The former NSA contractor pointed to the Boston Marathon bombing that took place in 2013, saying that once it had occurred, the agency realized that it already had data on the suspects and that they had been previously flagged. Nonetheless, the NSA failed to predict, detect, or stop their plot.

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03/02/2015

US AFRICOM Commander Calls for “Huge” Military Campaign in West Africa

Human Wrongs Watch

By Thomas Gaist, 2 February 2015, WSWS*

US Africa Command (AFRICOM) head General David Rodriguez called for a large-scale US-led “counterinsurgency” campaign against groups in West Africa during remarks at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC last week.

AFRICOM internal slide | Source: WSWS

Rodriguez’s statements are part of a coordinated campaign by the US to massively expand its military operations in the resource-rich region, as it combats the influence of China and other powers.

The US should prepare for operations in at least four West African countries as part of a “huge international and multinational” response aimed at forces affiliated with Boko Haram, Rodriguez said.

AFRICOM is already preparing an “across the board response to the threat,” Rodriguez said.

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03/02/2015

Save the Arctic… Now!

Human Wrongs Watch

By Greenpeace* — Right now Shell is trying to get approval from the US government to start Arctic drilling off the remote coast of Alaska this summer.

Source: Greenpeace

Source: Greenpeace

But President Obama has the power to stop the drills – and Shell. With his recent proposal to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, it’s clear Obama wants to use his last term in office to leave behind a strong legacy.

Tell Obama to make the Alaskan Arctic off limits to oil drilling now.

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03/02/2015

21st Century ‘Hottest’ on Record as Global Warming Continues

Human Wrongs Watch

Devastating weather patterns and increasing temperatures will last into the foreseeable future as global warming is expected to continue, the United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO) confirmed as it explained that 2014’s ranking as the “hottest year on record” is part of a larger climate trend.

Floods devastated much of the Balkans throughout May 2014. Photo: UNDP

“The overall warming trend is more important than the ranking of an individual year,” WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud on 2 February 2015 clarified ay in a press release. “Analysis of the datasets indicates that 2014 was nominally the warmest on record, although there is very little difference between the three hottest years.”*

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03/02/2015

World Conference on Aircraft Tracking, Risks to Civilian Aviation

Human Wrongs Watch

2 February 2015 – The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has brought together aviation experts and strategic decision makers for a four-day conference that will discuss emerging safety issues such as global tracking of aircraft and risks to civil aviation arising from conflict zones.

Credit: ICAO

Some 500 delegates have gathered at ICAO headquarters in Montréal, Canada, for the Second High-level Safety Conference to cover three major themes: reviewing the current situation, the future approach to manage aviation safety and facilitating increased regional cooperation.*

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