Author Archives: Osumashi

Column: “You can thank Obama for the looming Mideast war against Iran”

I wonder if this was Obama’s plan all along:

After eight years of Obama’s Mideast policy, this is the outcome. The Saudis, Egyptians, Israelis and others in the region learned from Obama’s snubs that they can trust no one but themselves and have made it very clear that they will confront Iran, whether or not the West continues to cling to its illusion of moderate Iranian leadership. It could all get very ugly, very quickly.

 

Read the whole thing.

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Canadian Single Dad Claims Harassment in Japan

I have zero sympathy for this man or anyone who goes to a foreign country and expects things to be run as they would in Canada. The Japanese regard time off of work as weakness. That’s how things roll. After working in Japan, he should have gathered that most of the globe doesn’t harbour the sentiments that Canadians do.

How is multiculturalism working out now?

The 47-year-old single father and former manager of global sales at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities Co. in Tokyo alleges he was harassed to the point of mental and physical collapse after he exercised his right to a leave when his son Alexander was born two years ago.

His lawyers have filed a temporary injunction against the Japanese brokerage and have asked a Tokyo court to order the firm reinstate him to full employee status. The company said it encourages its employees to take parental leave. But Wood said he’s a victim of what is known in Japan as patahara — paternity harassment.

Wood said he was incrementally demoted before he was put on unpaid leave in October after rejecting what he said amounted to a low-level clerical position and a more than 50 per cent pay cut.

“It was like junior high school girls’ type of behaviour — they shut me out,” he said. “They wouldn’t invite me to meetings, they wouldn’t look at me, they wouldn’t talk to me.”

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Trump Puts North Korea Back On the Terrorism Sponsorship List

He corrected a mistake made by George Bush:

President Donald Trump on Monday declared North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism, a designation that allows the United States to impose additional sanctions and risks inflaming tensions over Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons and missile programs.

The Republican president, who has traded personal insults with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un but has not ruled out talks, said the Treasury Department will announce more sanctions against North Korea on Tuesday.

The designation came a week after Trump returned from a 12-day, five-nation trip to Asia in which he made containing North Korea’s nuclear ambitions a centrepiece of his discussions.

“In addition to threatening the world by nuclear devastation, North Korea has repeatedly supported acts of international terrorism, including assassinations on foreign soil,” Trump told reporters at the White House.

“This designation will impose further sanctions and penalties on North Korea and related persons and supports our maximum pressure campaign to isolate the murderous regime.”

“It should have happened a long time ago,” Trump said.

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Quebec Judge Hears Bill 62 Arguments

 

Let the battle begin!:

A Quebec Superior Court justice promised on Friday to deliver a ruling as soon as possible regarding a request for a temporary suspension of Quebec’s controversial face-covering law.

Justice Babak Barin heard arguments on a challenge of the legislation, known as Bill 62, which forces people to remove face coverings when receiving or giving a public service.

Marie-Michelle Lacoste, a Quebec woman who wears the veil, as well as the National Council of Canadian Muslims and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association launched the challenge last week.

Lawyer Catherine McKenzie asked the court for a temporary suspension of the section of the law that forces public sector employees and private citizens to have their face uncovered when giving or receiving public services.

McKenzie argued the article in question violates the right to equality and freedom of religion, which are guaranteed by the Quebec and Canadian charters, and should be declared invalid.

She said the matter is urgent, given the significant impact on Muslim women who wear the veil on a daily basis.

McKenzie added the damages to those women would be irreparable.

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Psychiatrist Believes That Harkat Poses Little Risk

How could this go wrong?

A psychiatrist who has treated terror suspect Mohamed Harkat for the last eight years says the refugee from Algeria is unlikely to commit violent acts.

Dr. Colin Cameron told a Federal Court of Canada hearing Friday on Harkat’s release conditions that his patient supports democracy and expresses revulsion about terrorist attacks.

“I’m trained to be very skeptical of people,” Cameron told the court. “I’ve asked a lot of pointed questions to him.”

Harkat, who is closely monitored by Canadian border agency officials, wants general permission to use the internet outside his family home and to travel freely within Canada.

Authorities are asking the court to deny the requests and make only minor modifications to existing conditions, saying Harkat continues to pose a threat almost 15 years after being arrested.

As the two-day hearing wrapped up Friday, Justice Sylvie Roussel said she planned to issue a decision soon on whether to relax current restrictions.

Harkat, 49, was taken into custody in Ottawa in December 2002 on suspicion of being an al-Qaida sleeper agent but he denies any involvement in terrorism.

The federal government is trying to deport the former pizza-delivery man using a national security certificate — a legal tool for removing non-citizens suspected of ties to extremism or espionage.

He fears he will be tortured if returned to his Algerian homeland, something Cameron says Harkat has frequent nightmares about.

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Article: “Canada does not engage in death squads,’ while allies actively hunt down their own foreign fighters”

… says lackey:

Stewart, a former diplomat, continued: “These are people who are executing people … who have held women and children hostage, who are torturing and murdering, trying, by violence, to impose their will. Our response has to be, when somebody does that, I’m afraid, to deal with that.”

Those words may sound chilling, but they reflect a country that’s suffered several brutal jihadi attacks in recent years, and sees jihadi returnees as a threat. Other countries have come to the same conclusion.

But Canadians who join the militant group have so far had little to fear from their own government, either at home or abroad.

The British government has co-operated with the U.S. on drone strikes that killed two of Britain’s most notorious ISIS members: Mohammed Emwazi (aka Jihadi John) and Junaid Hussain.

The Sunday Times reports that Britain’s Special Air Service, SAS, has been given a “kill list” of British jihadis, including  notorious ISIS recruiter and convert Sally Jones, and a dozen others with British university degrees in technical fields such as electronics.

Brett McGurk, former U.S. president Barack Obama’s special envoy for the fight against ISIS, who retains his post under Donald Trump, stated it explicitly on a recent visit to Syria. “Our mission is to make sure that any foreign fighter who is here, who joined ISIS from a foreign country and came into Syria, that they will die here in Syria.”

“They’re not just talking about it,” said Christian Leuprecht, an expert on terrorism and security at Royal Military College in Kingston, Ont. “Australia is another country that’s taken the same approach — that they would prefer that those individuals who’ve been identified as foreign fighters not return home.”

France, too, is working to eradicate its jihadis overseas. A Wall Street Journal investigation published in May quoted French and Iraqi officials describing French special forces co-operating with Iraqi units to hunt down and kill French jihadis.

But Canada is taking a different approach. 

“Canada does not engage in death squads,” Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale told CBC’s Power & Politics on Friday. 

“With the battlefield activity winding down, there is a very real question about where the foreign fighters go, and all of our allies, whether they’re in the Five Eyes or the G7, we’ve all agreed to collaborate very carefully.”

Goodale said anyone who poses a terrorist risk, homegrown or from elsewhere, is viewed “with the greatest of seriousness” by Canada’s intelligence, security and police agencies.

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said his department’s job is ensuring foreign fighters don’t become a threat.

“We will make sure that we put every type of resource into place so Canadians are well protected,” he told a crowd at the Halifax International Security Forum on Friday.

These thugs don’t become a threat once they are vapourised.

But I repeat myself.

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Heartless Kitten-Tosser Turns Herself In

 

I hope they put her kitten-throwing @$$ in jail:

The driver who allegedly tossed two kittens from the window of a pickup truck in central Alberta on Wednesday has turned herself in to the Wetaskiwin RCMP, according to police.

 

Also:

Police dogs in Toronto will be getting armoured vests designed to protect them from sharp weapons.

The Toronto Police Services Board voted Thursday to accept an anonymous corporate donation of 18 of the vests.

The donor came forward after Lonca, a canine with the force, was seriously injured in November 2015 by a suspect armed with a machete.

The donor is buying the vests — designed to protect a dog’s major internal organs if attacked with a sharp or blunt object — from Line of Fire Defence Systems in Edmonton at a total cost of more than $22,000.

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Saudis Swapping Assets For Freedom

Saudi authorities are striking agreements with some of those detained in an anti-corruption crackdown, asking them to hand over assets and cash in return for their freedom, sources familiar with the matter said.

The deals involve separating cash from assets like property and shares, and looking at bank accounts to assess cash values, one of the sources told Reuters.

Dozens of princes, senior officials and businessmen, including cabinet ministers and billionaires, have been detained in the graft inquiry at least partly aimed at strengthening the power of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

These include billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, one of the kingdom’s most prominent businessmen.

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Father of Autistic Son Displeased With School

Jeremy Piper of Quispamsis says there’s nothing inclusive about an education system that restricts his nine-year-old autistic son Alex to 30 minutes of class time per day.

Piper says the Department of Education has failed to equip its teaching staff and schools to support students with special needs and he’s convinced the students are paying the price.  

“They don’t have the resources,” Piper said.

“They don’t have the training. They don’t have the experience. And they won’t make themselves get it.”

Piper was reacting to what he describes as his son’s suspension on Nov. 2 from Quispamsis Elementary School over a series of violent outbursts, including one that may have caused serious injury to Alex’s educational assistant.

“This is their solution — send him home, don’t deal with it.” …

Piper said that until this month, Alex had no history of violent outbursts and had been going to school full time, with very few issues.

Alex started kindergarten at Milltown Elementary School in St. Stephen, where he was enrolled until last year.

Last year, Piper transferred to the Sussex RCMP detachment but chose a home near Quispamsis Elementary School because he had heard it was one of the best.

Piper shares custody of his two sons with their mother, who also lives in the Kennebecasis Valley.

Piper said Alex’s first year at Quispamsis seemed to go OK.

Then, about six weeks ago, he started hearing vague and conflicting reports about Alex acting violently and outbursts in the classroom.

The most serious complaint seemed to involve Alex’s educational assistant.

“So the first call I got said that Alex pulled his EA by the hair to the ground and she cut her knee,” Piper said.

“Then in our meeting two weeks ago, [Paul Smith, director of schools] said Alex pulled her to the ground by her hair so violently that she dislocated her knee, or pulled something in her knee and she’s going to be out for a number of months.”

Piper said it’s a real concern and that’s why he’d like to see the documentation, but it hasn’t been provided.

“I don’t know if it’s as bad as they say, or whether it happened because they won’t show me anything.”

According to Piper, Alex, who is non-verbal, hasn’t received the resources he needs to manage his behaviour and make the most of his learning opportunities.

Educational assistants don’t get nearly enough training to deal with autism, he said.

And after about 18 months on the wait list, Piper said, Alex has yet to be assigned a speech therapist.

Piper said he purchased an iPad for his son and he also paid for the $340 software that enables Alex to communicate with images and icons, but in the last couple of weeks he noticed it was coming home fully charged.

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Cambodian Supreme Court Dissolves Opposition Political Party

The last time something like this happened, a bunch of Cambodians died:

Cambodia’s Supreme Court ordered the main opposition party to be dissolved on Thursday, dealing a crushing blow to democratic aspirations in the increasingly oppressive Southeast Asian state. The decision clears the way for the nation’s authoritarian leader to remain in power for years to come.

The verdict, which was widely expected, comes amid a growing push by the administration of Prime Minister Hun Sen to neutralize political opponents and silence critics ahead of elections due in July 2018.

Chief Judge Dith Munty, who is a senior ruling party member, announced the nine-member court’s unanimous ruling.

He said 118 opposition party members would also be banned from politics for the next five years.

The government accuses the Cambodia National Rescue Party of plotting a coup and has called for its dissolution for weeks. The opposition staunchly denies the allegations and says they are politically motivated — a position backed by international rights groups and independent analysts who say no credible evidence has emerged to back the claims.

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On the Korean Peninsula

More than 1,500 residents in the southeastern port city of Pohang, North Gyeongsang Province, have been displaced by Wednesday’s 5.4 magnitude earthquake and a series of aftershocks following the initial tremor.

 

It gets worse:

The Pohang earthquake on Wednesday that has rekindled national anxiety over the safety of nuclear power plants — mostly located in the southeastern part of the Korean Peninsula — is likely to add momentum to the Moon Jae-in government’s nuclear-free energy road map.

Anti-nuclear groups here anticipate the agenda may even rethink the recent decision to continue with the construction of new reactors.

 

In other news:

Presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said Thursday that South Korea has no authority to change the rules of engagement applied to the Joint Security Area amid controversy over its soldiers’ decision not to return fire at North Korean soldiers who were chasing a defecting soldier.

A Cheong Wa Dae official said the authority to change the rules falls under the United Nations Command. The UNC assumes operational control of the JSA, where the North Korean soldier had crossed toward the UNC-controlled area under about 40 rounds of heavy fire from his former comrades.

And that is part of the problem. Who runs South Korea – the UN, China or North Korea?

 

Also:

The North Korean soldier who dashed across the border to defect is a 20-something noncommissioned officer who had served at the Joint Security Area in the heavily fortified Demilitarized Zone, South Korea’s spy agency said Thursday.

Four of the soldier’s former comrades chased him toward the Demilitarized Zone, the de facto border between the two Koreas. They shot at him about 40 times. It is unclear whether they continued to shoot after the solider crossed the Military Demarcation Line and entered the territory controlled by the United Nations Command.

When he was found under a pile of leaves south of the MDL, he was unarmed and wearing a Korean People’s Army Uniform. He was also bloodied from gunshots to his shoulder, elbow and abdomen. He was rescued by South Korean soldiers and transported to a local hospital.

“His rank amounts to staff sergeant,” the National Intelligence Service was quoted as saying by Rep. Kim Byung-kee, who attended the closed-door meeting. “Regarding his personal belongings, we didn’t find anything special.”

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Military In Power in Zimbabwe

While many Zimbabweans are celebrating the military takeover that abruptly ended the 37-year rule of President Robert Mugabe, there are growing fears that Mr. Mugabe will be replaced by a military-dominated regime that remains equally repressive.

Diplomats and opposition parties are scrambling to find a path to democracy from Zimbabwe’s military coup. Yet the early signs suggest that the next government will be largely controlled by the same authoritarian politicians and soldiers who have led the once-thriving country into a nightmare of poverty and isolation.

Negotiations continued on Thursday between Mr. Mugabe and the military, with mediation led by South African cabinet ministers and a Catholic priest. But despite rumours of a deal that could allow Mr. Mugabe and his family to leave the country, there was no announcement by the end of the day.

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Pig Removed From Plane

The “support” hog, too:

A US Airways passenger was given the heave-ho off a jet when her emotional support pig went hog-wild during a flight from Connecticut.

The havoc-wreaking hog began sprinting up and down the jet’s aisles and attempts to settle the animal down by strapping it in went sour.

One passenger described the brown pig as being around 32 kilograms. The woman grunted and tossed the animal over her shoulder and left the plane. Some thought the petulant porker was a duffel bag — until it began oinking.

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A Quarter of Canadians Think That Religious diversity Is a Bad Thing

To wit:

In the survey, conducted the same week Quebec adopted a law prohibiting niqab-wearing women from receiving government services, 26 per cent of respondents said increasing religious diversity is a good thing while 23 per cent said it is bad. Nearly half — 44 per cent — said diversity brings a mix of good and bad; the remaining seven per cent were unsure.

When the pollsters sought respondents’ views on particular religious groups, anti-Islam sentiment stood out. Forty-six per cent of the people polled said Islam is damaging Canada compared with 13 per cent who said it is beneficial. The others either did not know (20 per cent) or said it has no real impact (21 per cent.)

The Angus Reid Institute, which conducted the poll in partnership with Faith in Canada 150, said the results are in keeping with “a well documented pattern” in recent years. “Namely, if Islam is involved, a significant segment of Canadians will react negatively,” the institute said in its analysis of the numbers.

The only other religion with an overall negative score was Sikhism, with 22 per cent calling it damaging and 13 per cent beneficial. Catholicism, Protestantism, evangelical Christianity and Judaism all had overall positive ratings.

 

I think some of this is due not only to Canada’s secularisation but to intellectual and moral laziness, as well. Most people worship quietly and do not cause problems. Indeed, many contribute positively to society. However, to admit that would mean that the haters would have to acknowledge these contributions, respect the freedom to worship and admit that the real problems do not lie in religions that serve as low-hanging fruit (ie – the Saturday and Sunday people).

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