About these ads

[VIDEO] Jerusalem: Police and Protesters Clash at Al-Aqsa Mosque

Palestinian protesters have again clashed with Israeli riot police near the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem.

Police say the protesters began throwing stones and firecrackers at a group of visitors, prompting the authorities to respond with stun grenades and rubber bullets.

Read the rest of this entry »

About these ads

How Technology Revolutionized Taiwan’s Sunflower Movement

Facebook and Google, the favored tools of dissidents, are now shaping Taiwan’s relationship with China.

taiwanFor The DiplomatVincent Y. Chao writes: Underneath the piercing gaze of Sun Yat-sen, the founder of the Republic of China, a group of students sat, unshaved, unkempt and basking in the glow of their laptops. Amongst stacks of coffee cups, crudely drawn artwork, and piles of unevenly stacked office chairs, they were hard at work, plotting the next phase of their revolt against the government in Taiwan.

Three weeks earlier, the group had broken past police barriers and forcefully occupied the main Legislative assembly hall, defeating multiple attempts to evict them by the police. They sit engrossed: sending out press releases, updating the group’s Facebook and Twitter accounts, and sparking discussion on PTT (an online bulletin board favored by many of the country’s youth). Others are dozing off, or hold a blank stare in their eyes, a product of weeks of tension, uncertainty and sleep deprivation.

Initially there were only a hundred of them – students from Taiwan’s top universities energized by a series of controversial land seizures and, in this case, upset at the government’s attempt to ram through a wide-ranging services trade deal with China. Their numbers subsequently swelled, buoyed by 24 hour news coverage, Facebook shares, and, of course, volunteers from the hundreds of thousands of enthusiastic supporters that have flooded the capital Taipei’s streets in recent weeks.

Oliver Chen, 26, is a student from Taiwan’s prestigious National Taiwan University Law School. His hallmark, he says, is the colorful dress shirts he changes into every day. “Nothing else is changed. Shirts are all that I brought.” During the protests, he was responsible for the bank of computers to the left of Sun’s portrait. His team of English speakers worked with the foreign press to arrange interviews with the two protest leaders, Chen Wei-ting, 23, and Lin Fei-fan, 25.

Oliver and the rest of the students were organized. Very organized. Even the opposition, rumored to have ties to some of the student organizers, admits to such. “They could probably run a better campaign than the DPP,” said opposition leader Tsai Ing-wen during a media interview. The students have a medical center, distribution tables for snacks and goods, and even rooms for yoga or singing.
Read the rest of this entry »


Children’s Hospice Easter Appeal Gets Unexpected Flock of 6,300 Knitted Chicks


[VIDEO] Putin and Snowden Bromance, Live on Russian TV

Snowden:

“Does Russia intercept, store, or analyze in any way the communications of millions of individuals?”

Snowden also asked if increasing “the effectiveness of intelligence or law enforcement investigations” is justification for placing societies under surveillance.

Putin:

“Our intelligence efforts are strictly regulated by our law. We don’t have mass system of such interception.And according to our law it cannot exist.”

“Our special services, thank God, are strictly controlled by the society and the law, and are regulated by the law.”

(read more) National Review Online


[PHOTOS] Romantic Pictures from Russian Dating Sites

CSaYHDe

“Me strong man, like Putin”

W95pFW7

“I’ll be your trashy dirty girl”

ra5Daxa

“Watch as I demonstrate my talent for oral sex. You like oral sex?”

Read the rest of this entry »


Israel Once Again Disappointed by Kerry’s Pathological Incompetence

Secretary of State John Kerry and the Israeli foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, at the State Department on Wednesday. Credit Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Secretary of State John Kerry and the Israeli foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, at the State Department on Wednesday. Credit Drew Angerer/Getty Images

For the NYTimesIsabel Kershner writes:  In an unusually pointed rebuke of an ally, Israel said on Wednesday that it was “deeply disappointed” by Secretary of State John Kerry’s remarks a day earlier that appeared to lay primary blame on Israel for the crisis in the American-brokered Middle East peace talks.

The Israeli-Palestinian dispute that has brought the talks to the brink of collapse appeared to be developing into an open quarrel between Israel and the United States, even as Israeli and Palestinian negotiators were said to be planning a third meeting here this week with American mediators to try to resolve the crisis.

“Poof, that was sort of the moment. We find ourselves where we are.”

– Secretary of State John Kerry’s infamous “poof speech”

In a sign that the sides were still far from reconciled, Israel on Wednesday directed its government ministers and senior ministry officials to refrain from meeting with their Palestinian counterparts, a move that officials said could delay bilateral projects.

The ban on contacts does not apply to the negotiators, and Israeli officials signaled that coordination between the two sides on security issues would continue. But it was intended to send a message that there would be no business as usual. Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] Hazardous Locations: TV Reporter’s Inattention Causes Quite a Splash

UPDATE: A KTLA TV reporter friend in L.A. broke the news to me, this video clip is not real, it’s a joke. Like a lot of people, I fell for it. Well, it’s funny anyway. And for a prank, well played!

YouTube


Reality Check: France’s Statist, Protectionist Tea Party Is Nothing Like America’s

manif-pour-tous

This is probably the most in-depth article on this subject you’ll see on this subject, to date. I highly recommend reading the whole thing, if you’re interested in getting past the headlines, spin, and misleading reports about France’s competing political groups. Nice reporting by Mr. Synon. 

For Breitbart.com writes:  The reports have been running on both sides of the Atlantic: conservatives are mobilising in France and this may be the start of a French Tea Party Movement. But before American conservatives start to cheer and look for soul-mates across the water, they need to see just who is putting out these reports.

“…the roots of French conservatism lie in resistance to the French revolution and, among many conservatives, a yearning for king and Catholicism.”

In America, it is the left-wing legacy media such as the Washington Post. By making the link, the Post wants to denigrate the Tea Party Movement by tying it to the anti-libertarian European hard-right.

In Britain, it is again the left-wing media such as Prospect Magazine making the claim. Prospect’s editor has derided the French conservative movement (what he calls ‘zombie Catholicism’) as a ‘French Tea Party.’

“But there is another French right-wing, too. It is represented by the National Front of Marine Le Pen, which has just humiliated Hollande’s socialists in the local elections.”

In France, it is the establishment socialists, the ‘intellos’ – the intellectuals – who claim the emergence of a Tea Party Movement. They want to denigrate French conservatives by linking them with what in France are seen as intolerant American yokels.

“Individual liberty and freedom from government is not at the core of the thinking of either kind of French conservative.”

Talk of a French Tea Party took off in February, when the left-wing politician Manuel Valls, then the interior minister in President Francois Hollande’s socialist government and now the prime minister, gave an interview to a French Sunday newspaper.

Read the rest of this entry »


Revealed: U.S. Secretly Created Network to Undermine Castro Regime, Stir Cuban Unrest

The Associated Press has learned the U.S. government created of a ‘Cuban Twitter,’ a communications network designed to undermine the communist government in Cuba.

Ed has some commentary at Hot Air:

…it also has a whiff of the NSA scandal, too:

“Mock ad banners will give it the appearance of a commercial enterprise,” one written proposal obtained by the AP said. Behind the scenes, ZunZuneo’s computers were also storing and analyzing subscribers’ messages and other demographic information, including gender, age, “receptiveness” and “political tendencies.” USAID believed the demographics on dissent could help it target its other Cuba programs and “maximize our possibilities to extend our reach.”

Of course, had this worked, it would have been hailed as a success story. Unfortunately, right now it looks like the worst of government programs: unauthorized, secret, incompetent, and snooping…(read more)

 

YouTube, AP, Hot Air

Read the rest of this entry »


Sacré Bleu! Marxist Die-Hards Rejoice: Paris Gets its First Female Mayor, Socialist Candidate Anne Hidalgo Wins Election

socialist-in-paris

Socialist Anne Hidalgo to be first female mayor of Paris

Paris (AFP) – Anne Hidalgo, a Spanish-born Socialist, will be the first female mayor of Paris after an unexpectedly comfortable win in municipal elections on Sunday.

Hidalgo, 54, had been expected to be run extremely close by her centre-right rival, former government minister Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, on a night when the Socialists took a beating from voters across the country because of the unpopularity of President Francois Hollande’s government.

But Hidalgo emerged with 54.5 percent of second round votes in the capital, comfortably seeing off Kosciusko-Morizet’s challenge, according to exit polls.

An old school feminist socialist, Hidalgo has spent the last 13 years as a low-profile deputy to current mayor Bertrand Delanoe.

She will now join an exclusive club of women who have taken charge of major cities around the world.

Read the rest of this entry »


Sacré Bleu! A wave of Tea Party libertarianism is sweeping…France? Je T’Aime, Ron Paul

french-ron-paul

Photo Illustration: Ed Johnson/FP

 Libertarianism is sweeping France and upending Europe’s socialist stronghold

Robert Zaretsky writes:  France and Texas go way back. In 1839, as the handsome wood mansion in Austin that housed the French Legation still reminds us, France was one of the few nations to recognize Texas during its short life as a republic. (Although, relations weren’t always cordial, and during the famous “Pig War” of 1841 the French chargé d’affaires had his valet shoot a number of porcine marauders that had invaded his residence.) A few decades later, a motley crew of Provençal poets, enamored of “le wild west,” dressed up as cowboys and Indians, transforming the Camargue, a stretch of swampy land in southern France, into a Mediterranean Texas, replete with bulls and ranches. A few years after that, in 1984, French audiences and the Cannes jury hailed Wim Wenders stunning film “Paris, Texas” — an equally romanticized, though somewhat grimmer, French riff on the Lone Star state.

“Whether it reflected widespread apathy or hostility, France’s unprecedented abstention rate benefitted the conservative opposition’s base…”

Is it possible that France is now importing the brand of conservative politics peculiar to Texas? Following their first round of local elections last Sunday, the French, at least at first glance, seem intent on doing so. Though a second round of voting will take place this Sunday, French voters have already spoken. What they had to say echoes what Texas conservatives, in particular the Tea Party stalwarts, have been saying for some time: Less federal government (whether D.C. or Brussels), more traditional values, and please, no more immigrants trying to change things around here.

“…voter abstention is the ruling Socialist Party’s greatest fear. And the problem has only gotten worse as the approval ratings of national leaders have plummeted. “

Read the rest of this entry »


Christian Sentenced to Death for Blasphemy in Pakistan

People gather after Friday congregational prayers to protest for the release of Mumtaz Qadri, one of the elite police guard who killed Punjab governor Salman Taseer in 2011

People gather after Friday congregational prayers to protest for the release of Mumtaz Qadri, one of the elite police guard who killed Punjab governor Salman Taseer in 2011

Arrest of Sawan Masih after drunken row last year prompted Muslim mob to burn hundreds of homes in eastern city of Lahore

The Telegraph‘sRob Crilly reports: A Christian man has been sentenced to death for blasphemy in Pakistan, according to his lawyer, following an incident last year that prompted a Muslim mob to torch hundreds of homes.

It is the latest in a string of convictions prompting calls from religious minorities for the law to be reformed.

“The blasphemy laws in Pakistan are used to settle personal vendettas.”

– Xavier William, president of the Christian pressure group Life for All Pakistan

Naeem Shakir said his client, Sawan Masih, was convicted during a hearing held in jail for fear of violent protests.

Masih, a cleaner, was accused of insulting the Prophet Mohammed during a conversation with a Muslim friend in the eastern city of Lahore. Within hours, about 3000 protesters had set light to Christian homes and churches in an area known as Joseph Colony.

Read the rest of this entry »


Mistrust Haunts Obama’s Saudi Trip

obama-pinched

Riyadh (AFP) – US President Barack Obama meets Saudi King Abdullah Friday as mistrust fuelled by differences over Iran and Syria overshadows a decades-long alliance between their countries.

Obama, who is due to arrive in Saudi Arabia late in the afternoon on a flight from Italy, is expected to hold evening talks with the monarch on a royal estate outside Riyadh.

Saudi Arabia has strong reservations about efforts by Washington and other major world powers to negotiate a deal

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud in Rawdat al-Khuraim, on January 5, 2014 (AFP)

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud in Rawdat al-Khuraim, on January 5, 2014 (AFP)

with Iran on its nuclear programme.

It is also disappointed over Obama’s 11th-hour decision last year not to take military action against the Syrian regime over chemical weapons attacks.

Saudi analyst Abdel Aziz al-Sagr, who heads the Gulf Research Centre, said Saudi-US relations are “tense due to Washington’s stances” on the Middle East, especially Iran.

The recent rapprochement between Tehran and Washington “must not take place at the expense of relations with Riyadh,” Sagr told AFP.

Sunni Muslim Saudi Arabia, long wary of Shiite Iran’s regional ambitions, views a November deal between world powers and Iran over the latter’s nuclear programme as a risky venture that could embolden Tehran. Read the rest of this entry »


Sacré Bleu! Leftist Front-runner or Conservative Challenger? Either way, Paris Set to Get Historic First Woman Mayor

France Madame Paris-tv

PARIS –  Two women are at war to be the new face of Paris, the first time in this city’s long history that the mayor won’t be a Monsieur.

The discreet, hard-working Socialist Anne Hidalgo is the favorite to win municipal elections that start Sunday, which would keep this leading tourist destination in leftist hands despite the deep unpopularity of President Francois Hollande’s Socialist national government.

“A woman at the head of one of the most important cities of the world … will have of course a very, very important influence,” Hidalgo told The Associated Press. It will also send an important message to leaders and voters in a country where women only got the vote at the end of World War II and where sexist attitudes persist toward women in power.

“A woman at the head of one of the most important cities of the world … will have of course a very, very important influence”

– Socialist Anne Hidalgo

Hidalgo, 54, has experience on her side, after 13 years as the deputy to outgoing Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoe. In all recent polls, Hidalgo leads center-right challenger Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, a 40-year-old rising star of former President Nicolas Sarkozy‘s party known by her initials NKM.

The race for Paris mayor — one of the most coveted jobs in French politics — is one of several thousand underway across the country for municipal elections held in two rounds March 23 and 30. Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] ‘Do It for Denmark’ Campaign Promotes Hot Reproductive Travel Sex

danish-sex-ad

Here’s our late-night palate cleanser: Soft-sell sexy Euro-’tainment from Denmark’s tourism industry. Sure, there’s all kinds of political, socio-economic, demographic, and birth-rare decline relevance that can be explored. But you can do that in the daytime, let’s enjoy Denmark’s pro-sex ad for the usual escapist reasons.

Do it for Denmark, Baby! 

denmark28n-3-web


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,783 other followers