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    Today, 01:21 AM
    Long before Donald Trump ever nominated Gina Haspel to run the CIA, a memoir from a former CIA top attorney contained a line with the power to do serious damage to her chances. Haspel’s informal nomination ran into immediate jeopardy last month over her 2002 supervision of the agency’s first secret black-site prison, located in Thailand, where two early detainees, Abu Zubaydah and Abdul Rahim al-Nashiri, were tortured. (She directly ran the black site, though after Zubaydah’s most intense period of torture that year.) But in his 2014 book, John Rizzo, a longtime senior CIA lawyer, indicated that Haspel was responsible for the incommunicado detention and torture not of two men, but of dozens, potentially. Former intelligence officials interviewed by The Daily Beast have portrayed Haspel’s experience similarly. Rizzo, in his memoir, Company Man, looked back on his time in a Langley controversy he likened to “a big turd dumped on my desk”: the fateful November 2005 decision, made by Haspel’s then-boss Jose Rodriguez with her support, to destroy 92 videotapes depicting the 2002 torture of Zubaydah and al-Nashiri. Rizzo wrote that Rodriguez’s then-chief of staff—who was Haspel, though he didn’t name her, as her identity was then an official secret—was deeply involved in the agency’s torture program. “Jose installed as his chief of staff an officer from the Counterterrorist Center who had previously run the interrogation program,” Rizzo wrote. That’s a substantially broader declaration than the history already dogging Haspel, the agency’s deputy director, whom the White House formally nominated as its next CIA director late on Tuesday. More at: https://www.thedailybeast.com/top-ci...gation-program
    53 replies | 2303 view(s)
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    Today, 01:20 AM
    Long before Donald Trump ever nominated Gina Haspel to run the CIA, a memoir from a former CIA top attorney contained a line with the power to do serious damage to her chances. Haspel’s informal nomination ran into immediate jeopardy last month over her 2002 supervision of the agency’s first secret black-site prison, located in Thailand, where two early detainees, Abu Zubaydah and Abdul Rahim al-Nashiri, were tortured. (She directly ran the black site, though after Zubaydah’s most intense period of torture that year.) But in his 2014 book, John Rizzo, a longtime senior CIA lawyer, indicated that Haspel was responsible for the incommunicado detention and torture not of two men, but of dozens, potentially. Former intelligence officials interviewed by The Daily Beast have portrayed Haspel’s experience similarly. Rizzo, in his memoir, Company Man, looked back on his time in a Langley controversy he likened to “a big turd dumped on my desk”: the fateful November 2005 decision, made by Haspel’s then-boss Jose Rodriguez with her support, to destroy 92 videotapes depicting the 2002 torture of Zubaydah and al-Nashiri. Rizzo wrote that Rodriguez’s then-chief of staff—who was Haspel, though he didn’t name her, as her identity was then an official secret—was deeply involved in the agency’s torture program. “Jose installed as his chief of staff an officer from the Counterterrorist Center who had previously run the interrogation program,” Rizzo wrote. That’s a substantially broader declaration than the history already dogging Haspel, the agency’s deputy director, whom the White House formally nominated as its next CIA director late on Tuesday. More at: https://www.thedailybeast.com/top-cia-lawyer-in-2014-haspel-ran-the-interrogation-program
    8 replies | 184 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 12:32 AM
    Tens of thousands of protesters have taken to the streets in all major cities across Armenia as the outgoing president, Serzh Sargsyan, is elected Prime Minister by the Parliament. The move is largely perceived as a power grab, as Sargsyan will largely retain the same powers that he held during his two terms in the Presidential capacity. This move takes place just after Armenia’s April 9th transition from a presidential system to that of a prime ministerial one. Western backed Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have been heavily involved in post Soviet Armenia’s education system, community and charity works. These NGOs have been selling the public on the perception that Armenia’s economic woes are directly the result of their corrupt, Russia friendly government, as well as Russia itself. Hence, the concept that Sargsyan’s government has only made matters for the population worse is the grievance upon which much of the unrest hinges. With Sargsyan seen as being in bed with the Russians, and his further development of Armenia’s ties with Russia, these protests therefore possess a potentially disastrous outcome, both domestically, for the Armenians, and also geopolitically, as it threatens Russia’s position in the region. However, Armenia has been playing both sides of the fence in recent years, as it has additionally been moving closer to the European Union, signing itself to a Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement with the European bloc, attempting to deepen diplomacy and economic ties with the West, while simultaneously making commitments to Russia’s economic initiatives in the region. Russia gets a villainous wrap over the fact that Russia is playing both sides of the Nagorno Karabakh-Azerb conflict, as Russia is the benefactor of both players, the common perception, derived from the propaganda of these NGOs, is that Russia benefits by stoking the conflict. The situation, in effect, represents a powder keg scenario, with all the elements in place to provoke the necessary popular discontent that would play into an attempt at regime change.
    0 replies | 54 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 12:16 AM
    Interesting document: https://www.oversight.gov/sites/default/files/oig-reports/FinalEvaluation_SESReassignments_Public.pdf
    205 replies | 7266 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:51 PM
    The Trump administration appears to have lowered the age limit for a legal immigration status granted to certain young people under the age of 21 who have been abused, abandoned, or neglected by their parents, the New York Times reported Wednesday. The publication found that several people between the ages of 18 and 21 have been unable to proceed with their petitions and are now ineligible for green cards. The federal U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) agency allows some young people — who can prove that they have been abused, abandoned, or neglected by a parent — to apply for the Special Immigrant Juvenile (SIJ) status. If the classification is granted, people may then qualify for lawful permanent status, or a green card. But as the New York Times reported, applicants in New York over the age of 18 and under the age of 21 have seen their applications denied “because of an unannounced policy reversal by the Trump administration.” At least 81 SIJ applicants from the New York City area “have been denied or were told they would soon be denied by the immigration agency,” according to The Legal Aid Society of New York which spoke with the New York Times. And “in total, more than 1,000 young people across the state, not all of them from Central America, could be affected.” According to the publication, the Trump administration appears to be “reinterpreting” the policy and saying that applicants over the age of 18 but under 21 do not qualify for the status because “family courts lack jurisdiction over the person’s custody” at the age of 18. These in-between young immigrants can have guardians, but the USCIS agency do not consider guardians the same as “custody.” More at: https://thinkprogress.org/trump-administration-reportedly-denying-green-cards-sij-children-16e40ef4c5b3/
    1 replies | 78 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:31 PM
    250 replies | 4704 view(s)
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    Yesterday, 10:19 PM
    Which color?
    8 replies | 150 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:51 PM
    The United States Army wants to develop a system that can be quickly integrated and deployed into its weaponized drone fleet to automatically Detect, Recognize, Classify, Identify (DRCI) and target enemy combatants and vehicles using artificial intelligence (AI). This is an impressive leap forward, whereas humans still operate current military drones, this technology could foster a new era of autonomous drones conducting operations in hybrid wars — without human oversight. The project is called “Automatic Target Recognition of Personnel and Vehicles from an Unmanned Aerial System Using Learning Algorithms,” — a very original name, which the details were recently released on the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR)website. In other words, the Department of Defense (DoD) via the Army is requesting private and research institutions that have developed image targeting AI platforms to form partnerships with them for the eventual technology transfer. Once the technology transfer is complete, these drones will use machine-learning algorithms, such as neural networks blended with artificial intelligence to create the ultimate militarization of AI. Currently, military drones have little onboard intelligence, besides sending a downlink of high definition video to a military analyst who manually decides whom to kill. Here is the program’s objective: “Develop a system that can be integrated and deployed in a class 1 or class 2 Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) to automatically Detect, Recognize, Classify, Identify (DRCI) and target personnel and ground platforms or other targets of interest. The system should implement learning algorithms that provide operational flexibility by allowing the target set and DRCI taxonomy to be quickly adjusted and to operate in different environments.” A full description of the program: “The use of UASs in military applications is an area of increasing interest and growth. This coupled with the ongoing resurgence in the research, development, and implementation of different types of learning algorithms such as Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) provide the potential to develop small, rugged, low cost, and flexible systems capable of Automatic Target Recognition (ATR) and other DRCI capabilities that can be integrated in class 1 or class 2 UASs. Implementation of a solution is expected to potentially require independent development in the areas of sensors, communication systems, and algorithms for DRCI and data integration. Additional development in the areas of payload integration and Human-Machine Interface (HMI) may be required to develop a complete system solution. One of the desired characteristics of the system is to use the flexibility afforded by the learning algorithms to allow for the quick adjustment of the target set or the taxonomy of the target set DRCI categories or classes. This could allow for the expansion of the system into a Homeland Security environment. ” Once the Army selects a private or research institution in the form of a joint venture, the partnership will allow both entities to further technological innovation in AI drone killing. Before the commercialization of this new dangerous weapon, these three phases must be completed first: “PHASE I: “Conduct an assessment of the key components of a complete objective payload system constrained by the Size Weight and Power (SWAP) payload restrictions of a class 1 or class 2 UAS. Systems Engineering concepts and methodologies may be incorporated in this assessment. It is anticipated that this will require, at a minimum, an assessment of the sensor suite, learning algorithms, and communications system. The assessment should define requirements for the complete system and flow down those requirements to the sub-component level. Conduct a laboratory demonstration of the learning algorithms for the DRCI of the target set and the ability to quickly adjust to...
    8 replies | 150 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:43 PM
    You must spread some reputation around.......
    319 replies | 2353 view(s)
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    Yesterday, 09:41 PM
    Blackwater founder Erik Prince says he has been informally contacted by Arab officials looking to marshal a multi-national force in Syria which would be able to fill any "security vacuum" left by a United States withdrawal - similar to the one which allowed ISIS to flourish when President Obama pulled US troops out of Iraq. An Arab coalition of Sunni-dominated governments exists to combat ISIS and other terrorist groups. The 41 member Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition was formed in December 2015, though it wouldn't hold its first meeting until nearly two years later. It's mandate is to fight terrorism in Shia-dominated Iraq, Libya, Egypt and Afghanistan - along with Syria. In November 2017, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, 31, announced that he would use the coalition to "wipe terrorists from earth." Speaking at a summit of defence ministers from across 41 majority-Muslim countries he spoke of a need for a “pan-Islamic united front” against terrorism. He said: “In past years, terrorism has been functioning in all of our countries… with no coordination among national authorities. “That ends today, with this alliance.” -express.co.uk The Muslim alliance and their first official meeting under bin Salman two days after Egypt's worst terrorism incident in which 25-30 attackers reportedly brandishing an Islamic State flag assaulted a mosque, killing 305 including 27 children. That said, the new plan (which may include Erik Prince) would combine manpower, military equipment and funding to focus specifically on Syria.
    250 replies | 4704 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:35 PM
    If they start it then the deserve to get it back. And how would you enforce that? Send Kops to use violence and shut them down? Or would you use a lynch mob instead? That way leads to tyranny.
    319 replies | 2353 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:28 PM
    Comey stopped by ABC's The View to peddle his new book, A Higher Royalty Loyalty, where he called his former Deputy Andrew McCabe a liar, and admitted that he "ordered the report" which found McCabe guilty of leaking to the press and then lying under oath about it, several times. Comey was asked by host Megan McCain how he thought the public was supposed to have "confidence" in the FBI amid revelations that McCabe lied about the leak. “It’s not okay. The McCabe case illustrates what an organization committed to the truth looks like,” Comey said. “I ordered that investigation.” Comey then appeared to try and frame McCabe as a "good person" despite all the lying. “Good people lie. I think I’m a good person, where I have lied,” Comey said. “I still believe Andrew McCabe is a good person but the inspector general found he lied,” noting that there are "severe consequences" within the DOJ for doing so. As a reminder, the Justice Department's internal watchdog, Inspector General Michael Horowitz, released a report last week detailing his conclusions from the months-long probe of McCabe, which found that the former acting FBI Director leaked a self-serving story to the press and then lied about it under oath. In response, McCabe's attorney, Michael R. Bromwich (flush with cash from the disgraced Deputy Director's half-million dollar legal defense GoFundMe campaign), fired back - claiming that Comey was well aware of the leaks. "In his comments this week about the McCabe matter, former FBI Director James Comey has relied on the Inspector Genera's (OIG) conclusions in their report on Mr. McCabe. In fact, the report fails to adequately address the evidence (including sworn testimony) and documents that prove that Mr. McCabe advised Director Comey repeatedly that he was working with the Wall Street Journal on the stories in question..." reads the statement in part.
    1 replies | 68 view(s)
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    Yesterday, 09:21 PM
    Authorities in the country have just announced their latest round of new deterrence systems of advanced ballistic missiles and helicopter gunships, expected to debut in an upcoming military parade later this week. Iranian Army Airborne Commander General Yousef Qorbani revealed on Monday that the Islamic Republic is planning to showcase a new short-range missile named ‘Shafaq, during the country’s military parades on April 18, which he added the missile is a complete upgrade of an earlier version — with much longer range. “The range of the missile has doubled to fly 8 to 12km farther compared with the previous version and given the regional threats that we are facing, they can be highly effective in combats in short-range combat zones,” General Qorbani said on Fars News Agency. The unveiling of these new deterrence systems could greatly complicate continuing “efforts by the Trump administration and European allies to solidify a range of fixes to the landmark Iran nuclear deal that would crack down on Iran’s ongoing ballistic missile program and research into nuclear arms,” said The Washington Free Beacon. More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-04-18/iranian-general-iran-unveil-new-missile-next-week
    2 replies | 72 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:14 PM
    I didn't vote for Trump and I will vote for Rand if he runs. I suggest that you should keep better track of your positions when debating on a forum where your words are recorded and can be quoted back at you.
    53 replies | 475 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:09 PM
    Shunning racists is fine, using violence on them is not.
    319 replies | 2353 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:08 PM
    r3volution 3.0 One more question, why did you say this? You certainly don't seem to believe it in all your other posts and it doesn't fit your contention that the Republican base is un-salvageable.
    53 replies | 475 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:48 PM
    I oppose racism but people have a right to be wrong, racism should be opposed with ideas not with force, using force makes it look to others like you can't win the debate and it opens the door to more thought control or a racist backlash.
    319 replies | 2353 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:46 PM
    When you said: Did you mean "once it's lost"? When you said: What did you mean? If he gets few votes and only educates a few people how does that set the swamp on fire?
    53 replies | 475 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:35 PM
    You are not listening to yourself, you said: And: How is he supposed to do those if the base is hopeless?
    53 replies | 475 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:32 PM
    I oppose racism but controlling it is used as an excuse to take away liberty by the "guards", are you any different if you impose your will on others?
    319 replies | 2353 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:24 PM
    If the base is hopeless how is he supposed to accomplish your goals? All he would do if you are correct is alienate Trump's fans and harm his chances for the Governorship.
    53 replies | 475 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:06 PM
    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is reportedly looking to hold longer workweeks as a way to keep vulnerable Democratic senators off the campaign trail. White House legislative director Marc Short told a group of GOP donors this week that McConnell planned to prolong the Senate's workweek in order to reduce the amount of time vulnerable Democrats can spend campaigning, according to The Washington Examiner. One GOP donor told the Examiner that the tactic is intended to keep Democrats, like Sens. Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.), Joe Manchin (W.Va.) and Claire McCaskill (Mo.), "tied up from campaigning." Heitkamp, Manchin and McCaskill are among a handful of Senate Democrats facing potentially tough reelection bids in states won by President Trump in 2016. A spokesman for McConnell noted the leader has said publicly that the Senate will work longer weeks if Democrats continue to slow-walk nominees. More at: http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/383855-mcconnell-looks-at-longer-workweeks-for-senate-to-keep-dems-from-campaigning
    1 replies | 61 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:57 PM
    You asked about the Republican primary, if the Republican base is as hopeless as you claim Rand and his donors would be better off running 3rd party or trying for the Governorship in KY, attempting to run against Trump in the primary without any hope would only waste money and cost Rand the support of Trump fans for any other race, Rand must either take Trump's base away from him or abandon it and run 3rd party.
    53 replies | 475 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:46 PM
    General election polls and primary races are two different things and a general popularity poll is a third. I don't claim our task will be easy but it is possible if done right. If you think so poorly of the Republican base why did you ask the question in the thread poll?
    53 replies | 475 view(s)
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    Yesterday, 07:43 PM
    Senator Rand Paul warned Tuesday that a new war powers act currently making its way through the Senate will expand the President’s authority to declare war without the backing of Congress, essentially allowing the ‘Commander In Chief’ to wage war any where at any time. While the legislation has been presented as a plan to “reassert” Congressional power to “authorize where, when and with who we are at war,” the proposal for a new AUMF (Authorization for Use of Military Force) actually allows the president to declare anyone an ‘associated force’ of terrorists, without even disclosing the details to Congress or the public. The legislation is an update to the 2001 and 2002 AUMF for the war in Afghanistan, following the 9/11 attacks. “Unfortunately, the authorization they’re putting forward will expand the president’s authority to involve us in war,” Senator Paul wanned during an appearance on Fox News. “Currently we’re involved in six or seven countries actively and another 10 or 20 sorts of intermittently. This new authorization will authorize all of those wars and then some.” Paul added. More at: https://www.infowars.com/rand-paul-warns-new-us-war-powers-act-will-rubber-stamp-global-conflict/
    4 replies | 116 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:43 PM
    Senator Rand Paul warned Tuesday that a new war powers act currently making its way through the Senate will expand the President’s authority to declare war without the backing of Congress, essentially allowing the ‘Commander In Chief’ to wage war any where at any time. While the legislation has been presented as a plan to “reassert” Congressional power to “authorize where, when and with who we are at war,” the proposal for a new AUMF (Authorization for Use of Military Force) actually allows the president to declare anyone an ‘associated force’ of terrorists, without even disclosing the details to Congress or the public. The legislation is an update to the 2001 and 2002 AUMF for the war in Afghanistan, following the 9/11 attacks. “Unfortunately, the authorization they’re putting forward will expand the president’s authority to involve us in war,” Senator Paul wanned during an appearance on Fox News. “Currently we’re involved in six or seven countries actively and another 10 or 20 sorts of intermittently. This new authorization will authorize all of those wars and then some.” Paul added. More at: https://www.infowars.com/rand-paul-warns-new-us-war-powers-act-will-rubber-stamp-global-conflict/
    4 replies | 134 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:38 PM
    Austria’s government is proposing to make it harder for refugees to become citizens, confiscate asylum seekers’ cash to pay for their upkeep and even seize their mobile phones to see where they came from. The measures were included in a bill approved by the cabinet on Wednesday, as the coalition government of conservatives and the far right clamps down on the country’s migrants. “We have very deliberately set ourselves the goal of fighting against illegal migration but also against the misuse of asylum,” Chancellor Sebastian Kurz told a news conference after the weekly cabinet meeting. Austria took in more than 1 percent of its population in 2015 when Europe’s influx of migrants began, many of them fleeing war and poverty in the Middle East and Africa. Initial sympathy for the new arrivals soon turned to alarm as their numbers mounted. That flow has since slowed to a trickle. But Kurz won last year’s election with a hard line on immigration, pledging to cut refugees’ benefits and fight radical Islamism. Wednesday’s bill, which now must be passed by parliament, would push to 10 years from the current six the time refugees must wait to become citizens. That will bring the requirement in line with rules that apply to most people, the government said. Some of the other measures were similar to those taken elsewhere in Europe - Denmark enacted measures in 2016 that included confiscating the valuables of refugees to pay for their stay. Austria would only seize cash - up to 840 euros ($1,040) - as do neighboring Germany and Switzerland. Others measures were more original. One would force hospitals to tell the government when asylum seekers will be discharged, to ensure “more effective preparation and implementation of deportations”, a government summary said. Seizing phones is a way to establish people’s identity or determine where they had been. But Heinz-Christian Strache, the far-right vice chancellor, said any evidence on the phones that crimes had been committed should also be handed over to the authorities.
    0 replies | 47 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:35 PM
    Or that they are more afraid of the Demoncrats who expose their radicalization more every day.
    53 replies | 475 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:30 PM
    Turkish Fighter Jets ‘Harass Greek PM’s Helicopter’ – EU Still Helping Turkey Join Brussels Bloc
    16 replies | 397 view(s)
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Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

Robert Heinlein

Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

Groucho Marx

I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

Linus, from the Peanuts comic

You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

Alexis de Torqueville

Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

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