Islamic State militants open office for potential wives

A woman wearing a full veil (niqab) walks along a street in the northern province of Raqqa March 31, 2014.  REUTERS/Stringer

A woman wearing a full veil (niqab) walks along a street in the northern province of Raqqa March 31, 2014. REUTERS/Stringer

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Islamic State insurgents have opened an office in northern Syria where single women and widows can register to marry fighters from the radical al Qaeda offshoot, a monitoring group said on Monday.

The office in al-Bab, a town northeast of Aleppo city, records the names and addresses of the women so that Islamic State militants can go to their families and make a formal offer of marriage, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

The Observatory, which cited sources in al-Bab and Aleppo, is based in Britain and relies on a network of people on the ground in Syria to report information. It was not immediately possible to confirm the report independently.

There have been previous reports of militants seeking wives or forcing women to marry them in areas where the group has been active. The Observatory’s director, Rami Abdurrahman, said it was the first time he had heard of the group setting up a formal office to register potential spouses.

Islamic State has set strict limits on women’s rights in areas it controls. A group statement issued last week said women in the Iraqi city of Mosul, which the rebels captured in June, had been warned to wear full-face veils or risk severe punishment. The statement also listed guidelines on how veils and clothes should be worn, part of Islamic State’s campaign to forcibly impose their radical brand of Islam.

Militant Islamist fighters wave flags as they take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria's northern Raqqa province June 30, 2014. REUTERS Photo

Militant Islamist fighters wave flags as they take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria’s northern Raqqa province June 30, 2014. REUTERS Photo

The Sunni insurgents have declared a caliphate in parts of Iraq and Syria and have threatened to march on Baghdad.

Islamic State captured large tracts of land in neighbouring Iraq last month and has advanced in parts of Syria where it has become one of the most potent armed groups in the country, three years into its civil war.

More moderate rebels launched a major offensive against Islamic State in January and have pushed them out of large swathes of Aleppo province, although the two sides still clash regularly.

Islamic State, formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), has mainly battled rival rebel groups in Syria but has also been confronting forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad more frequently in the past six weeks.

The United Nations says more and more Syrian rebels are joining the ultra-hardline group and estimates that there are 10,000-15,000 foreign fighters with various factions battling government troops.

On Sunday the Syrian army said it recaptured a gas field east of the central city of Homs that was seized by Islamic State insurgents earlier this month.

(Reporting by Sylvia Westall; Editing by Mark Heinrich)

Watch: What Harry Reid Just Said About Israel And Hamas Will Have Obama Shaking His Fist With Rage

Senator Reid took the Senate floor on Monday to call Congress to approve aid to Israel. In doing so, he stepped away from his Liberals and Democrats, who relentlessly portray Israel as the aggressor.

“Mr. President, our great country has many friends in the world, we’re proud of all the alliances we have,” Reid said. “But certainly, our deepest attachment is what we have with Israel. The United States and Israel have stood by each other in good times and bad times, in times of peace, in times of war. Right now our friends in the state of Israel are under attack. Hamas continues to indiscriminately fire thousands of rockets into Israel.”

“When Hamas fires these rockets, Hamas has no idea where they’ll land,” he continued. “Military installation, they hope; a daycare center, they don’t care; empty parking lot, they don’t care. They’re just firing these rockets indiscriminately.”

Even Sen. Reid knows that Conservatives are right on the issue of Israel. Will the President listen?

Read more at and watch video at:…”



You Might Be Shocked – And Frightened – To Learn Where This Group Of Illegals Came From

“People think this is just about Mexico and Central America, but it isn’t.”

As illegals continue to stream across America’s southern border, authorities are faced with the herculean task of identifying and processing the intruders while complying with the federal government’s policy of de facto amnesty. While most of the illegals make the trip from Mexico and Central American nations, Breitbart reports that a significant number come from decidedly less familiar home countries.


National Border Patrol Council Local 3307 spokesperson Albert Spratte revealed the startling origins of many who show up at the U.S.-Mexico border with hopes of joining our staggering population of illegal immigrants.

“One group of our agents apprehended individuals from Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka,” he recalled.

Each of those detained Saturday, he explained, were adult males who had no intention of cooperating with U.S. authorities.




Women must not laugh in public, says Turkish Deputy Prime Minister who calls for people to ‘rediscover the Koran’ and stop acting like ‘sex addicts’

  • Bülent Arınç complained about ‘moral corruption’ at an Eid el-Fitr meeting
  • Stated that women should not talk about ‘unnecessary’ things on the phone
  • Claimed that television had transformed teenagers into ‘sex addicts’  
  • Called for men to not become ‘womanisers’ and to have ‘chasteness’

‘Moral regression': Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç said in a speech that teenagers were becoming ‘sex addicts’

Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister has said women should not laugh out loud in public and urged them to stop talking about ‘unnecessary’ things on the phone.

Bülent Arınç also complained about ‘moral corruption’ by television programmes which he claims are transforming teenagers from ‘symbols of chastity’ into ‘sex addicts’.

Speaking at an Eid el-Fitr – breaking of the fast – event in the northwestern city of Bursa, he claimed Turks had ‘abandoned their values’ and pleaded people to rediscover the Koran.

Describing his ideal chaste man or woman, Arnic said they should both have a sense of shame and honour.

‘Chastity is so important,’ he said. ‘It is not only a name. It is an ornament for both women and men. [She] will have chasteness. Man will have it, too. He will not be a womaniser.

‘He will be bound to his wife. He will love his children. She will not laugh in public. She will not be inviting in her attitudes and will protect her chasteness,’ he added.

PHOTOS: Turkish women in laughing protest in spite of deputy PM

Turkish women in laughing protest in spite of deputy PM

According to the Hurriyet Daily News, he went on to condemn the transformation of young females in society.

He said: ‘Where are our girls, who slightly blush, lower their heads and turn their eyes away when we look at their face, becoming the symbol of chastity?’

Arınç also said he was frustrated by high consumption, referring to the number of cars and mobile phones that individuals now own.

Targeting women once more, Arınç said women discuss unnecessary things such as ‘recipes’ on the phone and should, in future, reserve these conversations for when they meet face-to-face.

He also said people should not use their personal cars too excessively, adding that even if the River Nile was full of oil, there would not be enough fuel to power cars.

Condemning society: He also said that women should not talk on their mobile phones 'unnecessarily' and should reserve conversations for when they meet face-to-face (file picture)

Condemning society: He also said that women should not talk on their mobile phones ‘unnecessarily’ and should reserve conversations for when they meet face-to-face (file picture)

Ekmeleddin İhsanoğlu, who is running for the president against Arınç’s boss, Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan, commented on Arınç’s statement via Twitter, saying Turkey needed women to laugh because of a need to hear their happiness.

Ekmeleddin İhsanoğlu

Mr Arınç is a member of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) which conservative values leading to it being described as Islamist.

Turkey has historically been more progressive with women’s rights than neighbouring countries but problems concerning honour killings and domestic violence have prompted concern.

Bangladesh: Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh – Muslim rapists act with impunity

Marma family from the Chittagong Hill Tracts in Bangladesh. Tribes in this region are under threat from settlers and the Bangladesh army where killings, torture and rape are common.

Marma family from the Chittagong Hill Tracts in Bangladesh. Tribes in this region are under threat from settlers and the Bangladesh army where killings, torture and rape are common.

Rape has become a most pervasive crime against indigenous women in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, and the perpetrators in majority of the cases are Bangalee settlers, lawyers and rights activists say.

The idea behind this is to create panic among indigenous women and thus force them to leave their homes and stay somewhere else. This makes it easier for the settlers to occupy their land.

Before the signing of the peace treaty between the government and the Parbatya Chattagram Jana Sanghati Samiti in 1997, rape was used as a weapon to suppress the indigenous community’s movement for autonomy, said Somari Chakma, a lawyer and rights activist in Khagrachhari.

“But over the past few years, incidents of rape have increased to evict the hill people from their land,” she told The Daily Star.

Between January and April this year, 15 cases of violence against indigenous women have been reported in the region. Of them, eight were rape incidents and two murders after rape, according to a report by Kapaeeng Foundation.

Land of fear

The foundation’s 2013 report shows that between 2007 and 2013, some 175 incidents of violence against women took place in the three hill districts — Rangamati, Khagrachhari and Bandarban. As many as 49 of them were raped and gang-raped.

“Minor girls, particularly those below 18, are the most common victims. Many are murdered after rape,” said Tuku Talukdar, convener of Narir Proti Sohingsota Protirodh Andolon, a Rangamati-based rights organisation.

Young girls usually fall victim on their way to and from school or when they go to nearby bushes to collect firewood or bring their cattle home, added Tuku, also an advocate.

As a result, it is becoming increasingly difficult for women and young girls to come out of their homes alone, something they did without fear even five to six years ago.

And even as such violence against women rises, the perpetrators go unpunished or even unidentified.

Between January 2010 and December 2011, 22 cases were filed for rape in Bandarban, 36 in Khagrachhari and 37 in Rangamati.

Trials in several cases have ended, but not a single accused was convicted, according to a study by the Chittagong Hill Tracts Commission.

“Most perpetrators have links with local Bangalee councils or influential political leaders of the Awami League, BNP and Jamaat. They often try to prevent the families from reporting to the police by settling the matter with money,” said Tuku.

In other cases, victims do not report those because of the social stigma associated with it.

According to the Kapaeeng Foundation report, four of the eight rape incidents between January and April this year have been reported to the police.

Weak charge sheets, language barriers faced by the indigenous community at police stations and courts, where most of the officials are Bangalees, weaken the cases, according to lawyers.

Somari cited the example of a Tripura girl who, already overwhelmed by the trauma of recounting the assault, failed to properly relate the incident to the defence lawyer during cross-examination in the court.

This will certainly give the accused some benefit of doubt and may weaken the merit of the ongoing trial, lawyers said.

In some cases police do not take the complaints. In other instances, they write the first information report ignoring the victim’s statement, said Tuku.

Then there is the lengthy legal process.

“The dates of hearing are set so far apart that the accused often get bail in the meantime and threaten the witnesses and the victims,” said Shefalika Tripura, executive director of Khagrapur Mohila Kalyan Samity, an NGO that provides legal help to rape victims.

Nobomohan Tripura, whose mother was raped and killed in September 2009 over a land dispute, described how all the five accused have been threatening his family since.

“Four accused were arrested but they came out of jail after getting bail from the High Court. They have been threatening us to withdraw the case.

“They say I will meet an end like my mother if I do not comply,” he said, adding that they cannot go near their land out of fear.

Shefalika of Khagrapur Mohila Kalyan Samity said, “Had there been conviction in at least one case, people would have received a message and refrained from committing such crimes.”

Another problem cited by lawyers and rights activists is tampering with the medical report in many rape cases.

Both Somari and Tuku alleged that doctors in the hill districts have been ordered by the higher authorities to produce negative medical examination report in cases of rape by Bangalee settlers to prevent communal tension.

sabita Capture

Somari gave the example of Sabita Chakma’s case. The 30-year-old was raped and killed on February 15 this year, allegedly by three Bangalee sand collectors.

The medical examination report came out negative though Sabita’s body was found almost without any clothes, said Somari.

Sanjib Tripura, residential medical officer of Khagrachhari district Sadar hospital where the examination was done, said all the tests were conducted as per the due procedures and reports were given based on the findings.

But he declined to speak about any particular case.

The troubles in the hills have a link with the non-implementation of the peace accord, according to Meghna Guhathakurta, a researcher and advisor of the CHT commission.

An investigative report by World Television News into the terrible violence inflicted upon the Jumma of Bangladesh.

Because of the government’s failure to keep its promise, Bangalee settlers have continued to occupy the land that once belonged to the indigenous community, she said, adding that there was no trust between the people there.

“The issue of land grabbing has created this mistrust in the hills where sexual violence is part of the day to day conflict,” she said.

Under the peace treaty, no one can buy, sell, lease or even transfer the ownership of land there without the prior permission of the CHT regional council. But the authorities have failed to ensure this.

Contacted, Rangamati police superintendent Amena Begum denied that police were reluctant to take up rape cases.

“There is a strict order that they must inform the SP or their senior officials whenever such an incident takes place. If we come to know of the incident from the media or any other sources, then the police officer is held accountable.”

She, however, said attempts were often made by indigenous community leaders or Bangalee union chairmen or members to settle the rape cases out of court. “We are trying to build awareness to prevent this.”

Michael Savage: ‘Muslim Sisterhood’ runs White House

Contends major powers want Hamas defeated but Obama siding with foe.

President Obama with  senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and U.N. ambassador Stephanie Power

President Obama with senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and U.N. ambassador Stephanie Power

President Obama appears reticent to help Israel stamp out Hamas once and for all because his administration is being run by a “Muslim Sisterhood,” nationally syndicated talk-host Michael Savage told his listeners.

With the likes of senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, U.N. Ambassador Stephanie Power and National Security Adviser Susan Rice guiding Obama’s foreign policy, America appears to be siding with the Muslim Brotherhood, the movement founded in Egypt in 1928 that seeks to bring the world under Islamic law and has spun off violent jihadist groups such as al-Qaida and Hamas.

It was the Muslim Brotherhood that governed Egypt in the wake of the so-called “Arab Spring” and was ousted in a popular uprising that brought the army to power.

In 2011, Obama called on strongman President Hosni Mubarak, who had outlawed the Muslim Brotherhood, to step down and supported the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate, Mohamed Morsi.

Morsi began implementing strict Islamic law before 30 million Egyptians took the streets and got rid of him.

Now, Savage told his “Savage Nation” audience, Israel is in a war unlike any other in its history, with Hamas, a spawn of the Brotherhood.

“For the first time in the history of the Jewish state, they have allies, albeit silent allies, in the form of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE,” he said.

“I don’t think the average American understand this.”

Most of Israel’s wars, Savage explained, “have been very limited in time, and that’s because, once they started, the U.N. or other factors stepped in and brokered a peace between the major powers.”

“Here, the major powers want Hamas crushed like a bug, wiped out once and for all, because Hamas is a threat to their own nations, not just Israel,” he said.

But the U.S. is working to impose a cease-fire just as Israel is experiencing success in its military effort to stop the rocket attacks by dismantling the Hamas weapons infrastructure and uprooting the tunnels used to smuggle weapons and terrorists in and out of the Gaza Strip.

The parent Muslim Brotherhood wanted to turn Egypt into an Islamic dictatorship, Savage recalled, and if not for the army, it would have succeeded.

But in all of this, Obama was on the side of the Muslim Brotherhood, he said.

“You would have thought he would have had a greater sense of destiny and history and humanity,” Savage said of Obama. “But, no, he was on the side of the Muslim Brotherhood; and he’s on the side of the Muslim Brotherhood in the form of the rebels in Syria.”

That’s why, Savage said, “I not-so-jokingly say that it’s the Muslim Sisterhood inside the White House that’s running this country,” referring to Jarrett, regarded at the most powerful person in the White House, next to Obama, and her ideologically progressive colleagues.

“There are many things going on in the U.S. military that cannot be explained other than trying to figure out retroactively who might be making these decisions against the interests of America,” he said.

Savage cited the old adage that life must be lived forward but can only be understood backwards.

“Looking backward,” Savage said. “I would say that my not-so-comedic analogy of the Muslim Sisterhood running America is no so crazy.”00

source: WND

Five Soldiers Killed in and Near Gaza

Wounded soldiers taken for treatment (archive)

Wounded soldiers taken for treatment (archive)

Five soldiers were killed Monday in and near the Gaza Strip.

Four of the soldiers were killed by a mortar that struck a group of soldiers near the Gaza border. This is the same mortar strike that was reported earlier as killing four “Israelis.” The “Israelis” have been identified as soldiers.

Six other soldiers were seriously wounded by the mortar shell.

A fifth soldier, First Sgt. Moshe Doino, 20, of Jerusalem, was killed in the course of fighting inside Gaza in the early afternoon.

Since the campaign in Gaza began, 48 IDF officers and soldiers were killed.

The families of the dead and wounded have been notified.




IDF: ‘Gaza terrorists’ fired rockets at hospital and camp

A Palestinian man, wrapped in his national flag, inspects the rubble of destroyed buildings and houses in the Shejaiya residential district of Gaza City, on July 28, 2014. (photo credit: AFP/MAHMUD HAMS)

A Palestinian man, wrapped in his national flag, inspects the rubble of destroyed buildings and houses in the Shejaiya residential district of Gaza City, on July 28, 2014. (photo credit: AFP/MAHMUD HAMS)

A rocket which hit the largest hospital in Gaza was fired by “terrorists” in the region, the Israel Defence Forces spokesperson claimed.

The IDF also said another rocket which hit a refugee camp, killing at least five people, was fired by “terrorists” in Gaza.

idf tweets Capture


As many as 10 children have been killed by a missile while playing in the street at Beach refugee camp; Shifa hospital compound also reportedly hit. Israel denies responsibility

As many as 10 children were killed on Monday when they were hit by a missile as they were playing in the street at a Gaza refugee camp.

Israeli and Gazan officials traded blame for the deaths, as it was reported a missile also hit the compound housing the biggest hospital in Gaza.

The damaged Dar Al Shifa Hospital stands in the Al Shaar District of Aleppo, Syria, on Sunday. Photo: Reuters

The Telegraph witnessed the aftermath of the scene at the Beach Refugee Camp, where blood and human remains were in evidence as bodies were ferried to hospital. Ayman Sahabani, head of the emergency room at Shifa hospital, said the children had been playing on swings when they were hit, adding that another 46 people were wounded.

Palestinian officials said the strike on Shifa Hospital had also caused casualties though there was no immediate word of how many. It appeared that reported missile did not hit the main hospital but a building inside the front gates.

The Israeli army denied responsibility, claiming the two sites had been hit instead by rockets misfired by Hamas itself. It later issued a warning for Palestinians in the area of Gaza City to flee.

“This incident was carried out by Gaza terrorists whose rockets fell short and hit the Shifa Hospital and the Beach (Shati) camp,” Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, an Israeli army spokesman, said.

Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, the government’s coordinator in the territories, said the casualties had resulted from rockets belonging to Islamic Jihad, according to Israeli newspaper Haaretz.

There were also reports of the first multiple civilian casualties in Israel. Media said that seven or eight Israelis had been hit by a mortar in the Eshkol region near the Gaza border, some of them fatally, though the army did not immediately confirm this and there were some suggestions that those hit might have been members of the military.

International pressure has been building for an end to the conflict in Gaza after the UN Security Council called for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, backing a similar plea from President Barack Obama.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday demanded that Israel and Hamas end the violence “in the name of humanity.”

He accused both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal of being “morally wrong” for allowing the civilian deaths.

He said “Gaza is in critical condition” after the bombardment by Israeli forces that has killed hundreds of residents and raised “serious questions about proportionality”.

The war, now in its 21st day, has killed more than 1,030 Palestinians, mainly civilians, according to the Palestinian health ministry. More than 220 children have reportedly died.

Israel has lost 43 soldiers, as well as two Israeli civilians and a Thai worker killed by rocket and mortar attacks from Gaza, according to the Israeli military.

Four Israelis killed in mortar attack; Gazan infiltration attempt thwarted | The Times of Israel

An IDF Merkava tank rolls along the border between Israel and the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip on Monday, July 28, 2014 (photo credit: AFP/DAVID BUIMOVITCH)

An IDF Merkava tank rolls along the border between Israel and the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip on Monday, July 28, 2014 (photo credit: AFP/DAVID BUIMOVITCH)

A mortar fired into southern Israel. Photo: Sderot Media Center.

Five terrorists killed during attempt to tunnel into Israel; Gazans say several dead in strike on hospital, park, but IDF denies responsibility; Netanyahu rebuffs UN in call to Ban Ki-moon

Four Israelis were reported killed and several more injured after a mortar round landed near a community outside Gaza, as fighting picked up Monday after a brief Eid al-Fitr holiday respite.

The attack Thursday afternoon occurred in Israel’s Eshkol region, located along the border with Gaza.

At least nine injured people were airlifted to Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba. Two reportedly are in serious condition.

The Code Red siren did not sound, as mortars do not usually set it off.

The killed and injured were visitors to the area, according to the Jerusalem Post, citing a spokeswoman for the Eshkol Regional Council.

The head of the Eshkol Regional Council, Haim Yellin, called on Israeli civilians to stop visiting soldiers in the area.

Roads into the area remain closed to traffic.

The unofficial cease-fire between Israel and Gaza seemed to come to an end Thursday evening as at least 12 volleys of rockets were fired at Israel. Code Red sirens sounded thoughout the Carmel region in nothern Israel, including areas such as Zichron Yaakov, Hadera and Caesarea.

Read more:


Four Israelis killed in mortar attack; Gazan infiltration attempt thwarted | The Times of Israel.

Gaza truce broken as Hamas fires rockets

hamas break cease fire Capture

The UN Security Council has called for an immediate and unconditional humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza to allow for urgent aid to reach civilians.

The 15-member Council released a statement shortly after midnight local time on Sunday (4pm NZT) calling for the truce between Israel and Hamas.

The conflict between Israel and Hamas has entered its third week, and the Security Council statement calling for the truce comes during the Muslim Eid festival marking the end of Ramadan.

Read more and watch video here:



UK ‘battle group’ to go to Poland

Typhoon jet

Typhoon jets have already taken part in exercises in the region

The UK is to send a “full battle group” of 1,350 military personnel for exercises in Poland, amid rising tension with Russia over Ukraine.

They will take part in Nato manoeuvres in October to support allies in Eastern Europe, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said during a trip to Warsaw.

It is the UK’s largest such commitment to the region since 2008.

Mr Fallon said Britain was playing a “central role” in responding to Russian actions in Ukraine.

The UK had already sent RAF Typhoon jets to support Nato in the region following Russia’s annexation of Crimea, the Ministry of Defence said.

And British personnel have taken part in small-scale Army exercises in the region.

Some 350 armoured and other vehicles will also take part in the October exercises, known as Black Eagle.

‘Sustained support’

Mr Fallon said the October exercises would “demonstrate our commitment to the collective security of our allies in Eastern Europe… [and show] our sustained and substantial support to Nato’s eastern border.

“We have a strong opportunity at the Nato summit [in September] to discuss how we will continue our response to Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and its destabilisation of eastern Ukraine.

“The UK is playing a central role and we are not ruling out further enhancements.”

Britain has previously warned the west may have to “fundamentally change” its approach to Russia after the downing of a Malaysia Airlines plane over eastern Ukraine earlier this month.

The “weight of evidence” points to the jet being shot down by a missile fired by pro-Russian separatists, Prime Minister David Cameron has said.

Heavy fighting in the region has continued since Russia annexed the Ukrainian region of Crimea in March.


Officials in Brussels are working on further EU sanctions against Russia, targeting access to European capital markets and trade in the defence sector and sensitive technologies.

Later on Monday, US President Barack Obama will hold a conference call with Mr Cameron and other European leaders, including Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.

EU ambassadors will meet to discuss further steps on Tuesday.

The announcement of British involvement in the exercises in Poland comes ahead of the Nato summit in Wales in September, when international leaders will discuss how to respond to future threats.




In an otherwise excellent article on the Hamas terror tunnel network in Gaza, the Jerusalem Post buries the lede. An Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldier in the field told the Post that while Hamas fighters offered fierce resistance when the ground operation began, now Hamas operatives are fleeing, abandoning their positions, leaving behind weapons and other material that the IDF is using to expand its assault on the terror group.

The source added that in recent days, a recognizable wave of demoralization has washed over Hamas’s combat battalions. “They simply escape, leaving behind weapons and suicide bomb vests that were laid out for battle. This morning we stormed a position, and they just weren’t there. I don’t see a determined enemy. We have encountered stronger pockets of fighting in the past. But now, I would not give them a high grade for fighting spirit.”

Using further eyewitness reports, the article describes how Hamas has integrated the tunnel network into the civilian infrastructure of Gaza, constructing entrances in homes and even mosques.


price of hamas tunnelsCapture

“I have not entered one civilian home that did not have weapons, suicide belts, or booby traps in it,” the source told the Post, stressing the lengths to which the IDF goes to protect innocent civilians caught in the crossfire, regardless.

IDF Shielding Arab Kids From Hamas Indiscriminate Rockets

The reports of a collapse in Hamas fighters’ morale lends credence to other reports that Hamas leaders were considering a temporary truce suggested by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. The organization has insisted in the past on making a ceasefire conditional on the removal of the international blockade of Gaza, which exists to prevent Hamas from importing weapons and materials to build its terror network even further than it has.

Update: As Israel’s political leaders debated a ceasefire well into Friday evening, a top military leader took the unusual step of discouraging a ceasefire, the Times of Israel reports, confirming the Jerusalem Post‘s report about Hamas retreat:

“The spirit of Hamas terrorists is weakening,” Southern Region Commander Maj. Gen. Sami Turgeman says. “I see terrorists in distress, abandoned by their commanders who deserted them at the front and stayed behind…and facing them, our reserve and standing army units led by commanders leading the force.”

source: Breitbart

‘What Part of This Can’t You Get Through Your Thick Head?': Hannity Presses Palestinian Guest on Hamas


The Council on American Islamic Relations has launched a massive letter-writing campaign, calling on Israel to end its military ground invasion in Gaza.

Read more @



BEIT HANOUN, Gaza Strip (AP) — Hamas resumed rocket fire Saturday on Israel after rejecting Israel’s offer to extend a humanitarian cease-fire, the latest setback in international efforts to negotiate an end to the Gaza war.

Despite the Hamas rejection, Israel’s Cabinet decided to extend a truce for 24 hours, until midnight (2100 GMT) Sunday. However, it warned that its military would respond to any fire from Gaza and would continue to demolish Hamas military tunnels during this period.

A temporary lull on Saturday saw Palestinians return to neighborhoods reduced to rubble and allowed medics to collect close to 150 bodies, Palestinian health official Ashraf al-Kidra.

With the retrieval of the corpses, the number of Palestinians killed reached 1,047 in 19 days of fighting, while more than 6,000 were wounded, he said.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and European foreign ministers, meeting in Paris, had hoped to transform the cease-fire into a more sustainable truce. That effort was thrown into doubt with the Hamas’ rejection of the extension.

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said any truce must include a withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza, and that tens of thousands of displaced people must be allowed to return to their homes. Israel’s current terms are “not acceptable,” he said in a text message to journalists.

In the northern Gaza town of Beit Hanoun, scores of homes had been pulverized, wreckage blocked roads and power cables dangled in the streets. Hardest-hit were areas close to the border with Israel, areas from where Gaza militants typically fire rockets.

Manal Kefarneh, 30, wept as she inspected her damaged home.

On an unfinished top floor, she and her husband had been raising chickens. The couple collected those dead and replenished water for the living in hopes they will survive the war.

“What did we do to deserve this?” she asked. “All of the Arab leaders watch what’s going on here like it’s a Bollywood film.”

Israeli strikes have destroyed hundreds of homes, including close to 500 in targeted hits, and forced tens of thousands of people to flee, according to Palestinian rights groups.

Across Gaza, 147 bodies were pulled from the rubble Saturday, officials said. In southern Gaza, a tank shell killed 20 members of an extended family who sought refuge inside a building, al-Kidra said.

Israel says it is doing its utmost to prevent civilian casualties, including sending evacuation warnings to residents in targeted areas, and blames Hamas for putting civilians in harm’s way.

Israel has lost 42 soldiers and two civilians, and a Thai worker also has been killed.

Israeli legislator Ofer Shelah of the centrist Yesh Atid party said Israeli troops are “fighting with an enemy dug in within the civilian population, dug in underground or within the houses there.” Referring to the widespread destruction, he said that “those are the consequences of such a fight.”

The military took some Israeli journalists into the Gaza border areas where troops were operating. Footage broadcast on Israeli television station Channel 10 showed homes booby-trapped with explosives, as well as grenades, mines and rockets stored there. Tunnels opened up inside houses.

Soldiers said some buildings blew up after being hit by gunfire from all the explosives inside. Col. Ofer Vinter, head of the Givati infantry brigade, said almost every house was booby-trapped with explosives and that Gaza fighters “emerge from the ground all the time.”

Standing over a tunnel concealed in a house, he said: “We cannot leave here before we finish dealing with all the tunnels.”

Israel launched a major air campaign in Gaza on July 8 and later sent ground troops into the Hamas-ruled territory in an operation it said was aimed at halting Palestinian rocket fire and destroying cross-border tunnels it views as a threat.

Shelah, the legislator, said about 50 tunnels have been discovered so far.

On Friday, Israel rejected a Kerry proposal for a weeklong truce because it had no provisions for the Israeli military continuing to demolish tunnels, Israeli media reported at the time.

Under the Kerry proposal, talks would begin during the temporary truce on easing the border blockade of Hamas-ruled Gaza.

Hamas has said it would not halt fire until it wins guarantees that the border blockade, enforced by Israel and Egypt, would be lifted.

Any new border arrangements for Gaza would likely give a role to Western-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, the main political rival of Hamas. Hamas had seized Gaza from Abbas in 2007, triggering the Gaza blockade by Israel and Egypt.

However, Abbas, who heads the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority, reached a power-sharing deal earlier this year with Hamas. Under the deal, a government of technocrats headed by Abbas was to prepare for new elections in the West Bank and Gaza.

Egypt wants forces loyal to Abbas to be posted on the Gaza side of the mutual border before considering open the Rafah crossing there, Gaza’s main gate to the world. Hamas officials have said they do not oppose such an arrangement, but would not surrender control over its thousands-strong security forces, meaning Hamas would remain the de facto power in Gaza.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said in Paris on Saturday that he and his counterparts from other nations are calling on both sides to negotiate a sustainable cease-fire.

Such a truce should meet Israeli security concerns, but also “the Palestinians’ expectations in terms of economic development and access to Gaza,” he said. “We are convinced of the need to involve the Palestinian Authority in achieving these objectives.”

Israel initially decided to extend Saturday’s 12-hour truce by four hours, to midnight (2100 GMT) Saturday. Hamas swiftly rejected the idea of an extension.

Shortly after the Hamas announcement, Gaza militants fired eight rockets and three mortars at Israel, the military said. Gaza militants said they fired 42 rockets, including two that were aimed at Tel Aviv, Israel’s second largest city, where police dispersed a peace rally attended by several thousand people.

In Gaza, a 36-year-old Palestinian man was killed by a sniper near the central Gaza town of Deir el-Balah shortly after the 12-hour truce ended.

Meanwhile, anger over Israel’s Gaza operation has sparked a series of protests in the West Bank. Since Thursday, nine Palestinians have been killed in clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinians protesters.

Among those were two Palestinians killed by army fire Saturday, including a 23-year-old in the town of Jenin and a 16-year-old near the town of Bethlehem, hospital officials said.

Deitch reported from Jerusalem. Associated Press writers Yousur Alhlou in Jerusalem and Ibrahim Barzak in Gaza City, Gaza Strip, contributed to this report.



Video Shows Smiling American Bomber in Syria

This undated frame grab from video provided by the Manara al-Bayda shows American suicide attacker Moner Mohammad Abu-Salha on Friday, July 25, 2014.

An al-Qaida-linked group fighting in Syria has released video of the first American to carry out a suicide attack in the country’s civil war, showing him smiling and saying he looked forward to going to heaven.

The Nusra Front released the new video late Friday showing American citizen Moner Mohammad Abu-Salha, 22, with other fighters before the May 25 attack that targeted several army positions at the same time. It said two of the other three suicide attackers in the assault in the government-held northwestern city of Idlib were from foreign countries, including one who was identified as being from the Maldives.

Abu-Salha appears smiling in the video and speaks in broken Arabic.

“I want to rest in the afterlife, in heaven. There is nothing here and the heart is not resting,” Abu-Salha says. “Heaven is better. When people die they either go to heaven or hell. There is happiness beyond explanation.”

The video, released by Nusra Front’s media arm, al-Manara al-Baydha, was posted on jihadi websites. It corresponded with Associated Press reporting about the attack and Abu-Salha.

Opposition forces previously identified the American who carried out the bombing as Abu Hurayra al-Amriki and said he was a U.S. citizen. The name al-Amriki means “the American” in Arabic.

It’s unknown how many people were killed in the bombing. Opposition rebels with the Nusra Front said Abu-Salha’s truck was laden with 16 tons of explosives to tear down the al-Fanar restaurant, a gathering site for Syrian troops. The other suicide attackers targeted nearby army positions.

Abu-Salha grew up in Florida and attended several colleges before dropping out and moving abroad.

Thousands of foreign fighters have come to Syria from around the world to fight against President Bashar Assad’s forces after the uprising against his government began three years ago.

The war, which began in 2011, has since taken on strong sectarian overtones, pitting a Sunni-led insurgency that includes al-Qaida-inspired extremist groups against a government dominated by Assad’s minority Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shiite Islam.

Syria’s uprising began with peaceful protests in March 2011 but escalated into an armed revolt when government forces launched a sweeping crackdown on dissent. The conflict has killed at least 170,000 people, nearly a third of them civilians, according to activists. Nearly 3 million Syrians have fled the country.

On Saturday, a car bomb exploded in a northern Syrian town near the Turkish border, killing and wounding a number of people.

The Aleppo Media Center said the car bomb exploded in a vegetable market in the town of Azaz. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the car blew up near a gas station in Azaz. The Observatory said the blast killed at least four people and wounded several others while the AMC said it killed and wounded a number of people without offering specific figures.

The Observatory and an Idlib-based activist who goes by the name of Asad Kanjo said another car blew up in the northern village of Atmeh near the Turkish border. The Observatory said the blast killed two people. Kanjo said the blast occurred near a market and close to a children’s hospital, though it was not affected.




Barack Obama banned from entering Chechnya

The Chechen president, Ramzan Kadyrov, meets the actor Gérard Depardieu in Grozny last year but Barack Obama is not welcome. Photograph: Stringer/Reuters

Chechen president says ban, which extends to EU leaders Barroso, Van Rompuy and Ashton, is response to US and EU ‘state terrorism’

Although Russia has not responded to US sanctions over the Ukraine crisis by putting a travel ban on President Barack Obama, there is one part of the country he is now barred from entering: Chechnya.

On Saturday Ramzan Kadyrov, the president of the small Russian republic that has been the scene of two devastating separatist wars in the past 20 years, said he was placing Obama on a list of people banned from visiting.

The list also includes European Union figures José Manuel Barroso, Herbert van Rompuy and Catherine Ashton.

Kadyrov, wrote on his Instagram account that the ban was in response to US and EU actions in Ukraine, Libya, Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, which he called “state terrorism”.

On Saturday, the Russian foreign ministry released a strongly worded statement blaming the US, in part, for the Ukraine crisis.

“The United States continues to push Kiev into the forceful repression of [Ukraine's] Russian-speaking population’s discontent,” the statement said. “There is one conclusion – the Obama administration has some responsibility both for the internal conflict in Ukraine and its severe consequences.”

Tensions between Russia and the US have increased over the Russian annexation of Crimea and the actions of pro-Russia separatists in the east of Ukraine, culminating recently in the downing of a civilian airliner, Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, with the loss of 298 lives.

The foreign ministry statement continued: “Judging by the relentless slander campaign against Russia, organised by the American administration, they increasingly rely on sheer lies while conducting foreign policy.”



Sunwing Airlines Flight 772 escorted by US fighter jets back to Toronto after Muslim passenger ‘makes direct threat’ against aircraft

A 25-year-old Canadian man has been charged after he allegedly made “direct threats” to the safety of a flight to Panama City this morning, resulting in the plane returning to Toronto for an emergency landing.

Flight 772 turned around after 45 minutes in the air for the emergency landing at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport. It was escorted by two U.S. F-16 military jets.

Ali Shahi, a Canadian citizen, has been charged with:

  • Mischief to property.
  • Mischief interfering of the lawful enjoyment of property.
  • Uttering threats.
  • Endangering the safety of an aircraft.

He is being held in custody until a bail hearing.

Ali Shahi

Ali Shahi, who currently lives in Mississauga, is alleged to have made a threat aboard a Sunwing flight en route to Panama. (Ali Shahi/Facebook)

The two U.S. F-16 fighter jets from Toledo, Ohio, were dispatched to escort the plane back to Toronto, North American Aerospace Defence Command (Norad) confirmed. The F-16s flew with the commercial plane out of U.S. airspace to Toronto as a “precaution.”

The RCMP took the lead on the investigation once the plane landed at Pearson airport at 8:55 a.m. ET.

When the plane landed, a passenger on the plane said five or six officers with guns drawn boarded the plane and removed Shahi.

Shahi’s father, who did not want his name used, suggested his son has mental health issues.

“I am sorry for what happened on the flight, but Ali is not at fault,” he said. “I blame the police and health system. We called the police for help more than 23 times in the last two to three years, but unfortunately they did nothing to help us or help my son.”

Sharon Ramsay was on the flight, headed for a vacation with her two children. It was the first time they had been on a plane. Ramsay said she was crying while the arrest was taking place.

“It was extremely scary,” she said when the police stormed into the plane yelling “heads down hands up.”

“The kids were scared, I was scared.”

The plane was over West Virginia when it turned around.

There were 181 people, two infants, two pilots and four flight attendants on board.

Most passengers left on another flight for Panama City later on Friday.

Passengers file out of Sunwing Flight 772

Passengers on Sunwing Flight 772 get off the plane after police made an arrest on board. (Alphonso Alain)

Two held in FGM probe after man and girl stopped at Heathrow

A man was stopped at Heathrow Airport over conspiracy to commit FGM

A man and a woman have been arrested in London for conspiracy to commit female genital mutilation (FGM).

Police stopped a man who was travelling with an 11-year-old girl at Terminal 4 of Heathrow Airport on Friday morning.

They had arrived that morning on a flight from Kampala, Uganda.

A woman, 40, was arrested in Hackney, east London, on Saturday, while the man, 72, a Ugandan national, was arrested in Newham, east London.

With concerns for her welfare, specialist officers took the girl – a UK national – into the care of social services.

The pair were arrested under Section 2 of FGM Act 2003 namely aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring a girl to carry out FGM on herself, Scotland Yard said.

fgm cardiffCapture


Both have been taken to an east London police station where they remain in custody.

A global conference – called the Girl Summit 2014 – was held in London earlier this week, where international politicians pledged to to eradicate FGM within a generation.

A police spokesman added: ” The Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 makes it illegal to participate in any sort of arrangement for FGM to be performed on another, either inside or outside the UK.”

#WeAreN: thousands unite to support persecuted Christians in Iraq


nazarene Capture

Thousands of people have joined together on Twitter to express solidarity with persecuted Christians in Iraq, using the #WeAreN.

‘N’, or ن in Arabic, is the symbol used by the Islamic State (IS or ISIS) to identify who is a Nazarene – a Christian. It has been drawn on doorways and in front of houses in captured Iraqi cities, allowing militants to quickly assert where the loyalties of the inhabitants lie.

Last week, members of the extremist Sunni Muslim faction drove Christians out of the historic city of Mosul, where members of the faith have lived for the past 2,000 years. They were told to either flee the city, convert to Islam, or pay a tax for the right to be a Christian. Those who refused now risk death “by the sword”.

In their genocidal physical elimination of Christians from the Mesopotamian city of Mosul, Muslim terrorists marked each Christian-owned institution and building with this letter, for the extermination of holdouts and expropriation of their belongings

“For the first time in the history of Iraq, Mosul is now empty of Christians,” Patriarch Louis Sako told AFP following Friday’s harrowing events.

“The heinous crime of the Islamic State was carried out not just against Christians, but against humanity,” he added in a sermon in Baghdad on Sunday, which was attended by local Christians and around 200 Muslims – many of whom wore t-shirts branded with the words “We are N”, “I am Iraqi, I am Christian”, or simply “ن”.

“This has never happened in Christian or Islamic history,” Sako warned.

People all over the world are now joining in with the condemnation of IS, which – led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi – is attempting to found a pan-Islamic state across a stretch of northern Iraq and Syria.

The Church of England yesterday changed its Twitter photo to a ‘We are N’ symbol:

c of e Capture

And it has been joined by others across the globe.

The Times yesterday published a letter by former bishop, Dr Geoffrey Rowell, in which he denounced the “savage attacks” on “ancient Christian communities” in the Middle East, labelling them “deeply troubling” and “chilling”.

Referring to the storming of a fourth-century Syrian monastery by IS on Sunday, in an attack which forced the resident monks to flee, Rowell wrote: “The desecration of churches and tombs, the seizure of the ancient monastery and pilgrimage place of Mar Behnam, the human tragedies of refugee families dispossessed of their homes, are an unfolding tragedy in the latest martyrdom suffered by Christians”.

As IS continues to gain momentum – and followers – fears are mounting that it will soon capture Iraq’s capital Baghdad. Militants have claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing in the city last night, which killed 33 civilians and injured dozens more.

The explosion, which took place at the site of an important Sh’ite shrine in Kadhimiya, is the latest in a string of bombings in Baghdad, including several on Saturday which killed 27 people.

source : Christian Today

Egyptian Army kills suicide bomber running toward Israeli border

border map egypt israelCapture

RAMALLAH — Egypt has blocked an Islamist insurgency strike on Israel.

The Palestinian news agency Maan said the Egyptian Army killed a would-be suicide bomber who tried to infiltrate an Israel Army base along the Egyptian border.

Maan quoted Egyptian military sources as saying that the bomber was killed by Egyptian troops on late July 23.

“He was shot dead while running towards the border with Israel south of Rafah in what they said was an attempt to reach an Israeli military base in Kerem Shalom,” Maan reported.

In a report on July 24, Maan, funded by the European Union, said the dead man was found to have carried an explosive belt as well as a bomb. Neither Egypt nor Israel confirmed the report.

Maan also said the Egyptian Army stopped rocket fire into Israel from the Sinai Peninsula. The news agency, quoting Egyptian military sources, said a vehicle with BM-21 Grad rockets was destroyed in Sheik Zweid near the Sinai-Gaza border.

“It was hit by artillery shells, killing two individuals inside,” Maan said.

Western diplomatic sources said Egypt has emerged as a major partner of Israel in the war against Hamas. The sources said the Egyptian military was on alert to stop the flow of rockets from and to the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

source: World Tribune