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Grenades thrown at Libya's NTC Benghazi office

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

Grenades thrown at Libya's NTC Benghazi office 21 Jan 2012 Angry protesters stormed the offices of Libya's National Transitional Council in the eastern city of Benghazi on Saturday after besieging the building for hours, an NTC member told AFP. "The demonstrators attacked the building and turned NTC offices upside down," the official said on condition of anonymity. Witnesses said protesters, armed with stones and iron bars, stormed and ransacked the offices as they occupied them.

6 killed in Afghanistan were Hawaii-based Marines

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

6 killed in Afghanistan were Hawaii-based Marines 20 Jan 2012 All six Marines killed in the crash of a U.S. helicopter in Afghanistan were based in Hawaii, a Hawaii congresswoman said Friday. The CH-53D helicopter crashed Thursday in Afghanistan's southern province of Helmand. Thursday's crash was the deadliest in Afghanistan since August, when 30 American troops died after a Chinook helicopter was apparently shot down in Wardak province in the center of the country.

10 NATO Troops Killed in Afghanistan in 24 Hours

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

10 NATO Troops Killed in Afghanistan in 24 Hours 20 Jan 2012 An Afghan soldier shot and killed four French troops Friday in eastern Afghanistan and a helicopter crash killed six more NATO servicemembers in the south, officials said, marking a particularly deadly 24 hours for coalition forces. French President Nicolas Sarkozy said Friday that France is suspending its training programs for Afghan troops after the killings, which he announced in a speech after the U.S.-led coalition said an Afghan soldier shot and killed four NATO troops.

Nato accused of war crimes in Libya

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

Nato accused of war crimes in Libya --New report criticises Western forces for bombing civilian targets in Sirte during conflict 19 Jan 2012 An independent report published by Middle Eastern human rights groups says there is evidence that war crimes and human rights violations were committed by all the participants – Nato, rebel forces and those loyal to Colonel Gaddafi – in last year's Libyan uprising US-backed coup. The report, published today by the Arab Organisation for Human Rights together and the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights with the International Legal Assistance Consortium, follows extensive fact-finding work carried out by law and war crimes experts. After interviews with eye-witnesses and victims of attacks, and after visiting areas targeted by Nato, the Independent Civil Society Mission to Libya report highlights the issue of Nato classifying some civilian sites as military targets during its operations.

US deploys 12,000 troops in Libya

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

US deploys 12,000 troops in Libya 21 Jan 2012 The United States has sent some 12,000 soldiers to Libya, in the first phase of deployments to the oil-rich North African nation. According to Asharq Alawsat, the troops landed in the eastern oil port city of Brega. Although the deployment is said to be aimed at generating stability and security in the region, the troops are expected to take control of the country's key oil fields and strategic ports. Brega, the site of an important oil refinery, serves as a major export hub for Libyan oil.

Afghan soldier who killed French troops was our recruit, Taliban say

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

Afghan soldier who killed French troops was our recruit, Taliban say --Taliban claim gunman who shot dead four French soldiers was an infiltrator working for them 21 Jan 2012 The Taliban claim the Afghan soldier who shot dead four French soldiers at a base east of Kabul, prompting France to threaten to withdraw early from the country, was one of their recruits. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the gunman was an infiltrator working for the Taliban, also known as The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. "The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan has recruited people in important positions," he said. "Some of them have already accomplished their missions."

10 Sites Skewered by Anonymous, Including FBI, DOJ, U.S. Copyright Office

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

10 Sites Skewered by Anonymous, Including FBI, DOJ, U.S. Copyright Office 20 Jan 2012 According to Anonymous, 10 well-known governmental and corporate sites with ties to the entertainment industry were assaulted and knocked offline in retaliation for the FBI shutting down Megaupload.com, one of the world's largest file-sharing sites. Dubbing its DDoS spree "OpMegaupload," Anonymous claims it took down usdoj.gov and justice.gov (the U.S. Department of Justice), universalmusic.com (Universal Music Group), RIAA.org (the Recording Industry Association of America), MPAA.org (the Motion Picture Association of America), copyright.gov (the U.S. Copyright Office), hadopi.fr (France's copyright-enforcement agency), wmg.com (Warner Music Group), bmi.com (Broadcast Music, Inc.) and fbi.gov (the Federal Bureau of Investigation). The DOJ's website was first to fall, about an hour after the Justice Department announced its indictment of Megaupload.com. [<g>]

N.C. air transport company Aero has role in extraordinary rendition, report says

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

N.C. air transport company Aero has role in extraordinary rendition, report says 19 Jan 2012 With fresh ammunition from a University of North Carolina law school report, activists renewed their call Thursday for state officials to take legal action against Aero Contractors Ltd. For years the Johnston County, N.C., air transport company, which has links to the CIA, has been accused of being a taxi service for paramilitary teams that pick up terrorism suspects in one country and fly them to another where it's easier to interrogate and, perhaps, torture them. The process is known as extraordinary rendition.

U.N. asked to investigate U.S. efforts to squelch Spain torture probe

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

U.N. asked to investigate U.S. efforts to squelch Spain torture probe 19 Jan 2012 Two legal rights groups on Thursday asked the United Nations to investigate allegations that Spanish and U.S. officials collaborated to quash criminal probes into whether the Bush administration authorized illegal killings and torture of terrorism suspects. The request, made to the U.N.'s special rapporteur for judicial independence, accused the United States of interfering with Spain's justice system in three different criminal cases. The New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights and the Berlin-based European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights asked that the U.N. demand that both governments refrain from meddling in court cases.

Millions were in germ war tests

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

Millions were in germ war tests --Much of Britain was exposed to bacteria sprayed in secret trials 21 Apr 2002 The Ministry of Defence turned large parts of the country into a giant laboratory to conduct a series of secret germ warfare tests on the public. A government report just released provides for the first time a comprehensive official history of Britain's biological weapons trials between 1940 and 1979. Many of these tests involved releasing potentially dangerous chemicals and micro-organisms over vast swaths of the population without the public being told. The report reveals that military personnel were briefed to tell any 'inquisitive inquirer' the trials were part of research projects into weather and air pollution. Asked whether such tests are still being carried out, she said: 'It is not our policy to discuss ongoing research.'

PETA Alleges US Soldiers Took Part in Sheep Beating

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

PETA Alleges US Soldiers Took Part in Sheep Beating 18 Jan 2012 Less than a week after Corps officials were forced to deal with an embarrassing video of Marines urinating on the corpses of Taliban fighters, Army officials are now fielding questions about a new online video that appears to show a group of soldiers [sociopaths] laughing and celebrating as a sheep is bludgeoned to death. Officials from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals complained to Army leadership about the video in late November, but hope the publicity from the latest video scandal will help renew questions about the animal attack.

Bioterror fears halt research on mutant bird flu

January 21, 2012 by legitgov

Bioterror fears halt research on mutant bird flu 20 Jan 2012 Scientists who created a more deadly strain of bird flu have temporarily stopped their research amid fears it could be used by bioterrorists. In a letter published in Science and Nature, the researchers call for an "international forum" to debate the risks and value of the studies. US authorities last month asked the authors of the research to redact key details in forthcoming publications. A government advisory panel suggested the data could be used by terrorists. [In psychology, we call that projection.]

Marine's Iraq killings trial resumes in California

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Marine's Iraq killings trial resumes in California 20 Jan 2012 A major war crimes trial resumed Friday with the prosecution showing outtakes of a 2007 "60 Minutes" interview in which a Marine squad leader charged with killing unarmed Iraqis says he was trained to "positively identify your target before you shoot to kill." Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich, 31, is the last defendant in the biggest criminal case to emerge from the Iraq war. He was charged with nine counts of voluntary manslaughter after his squad killed 24 unarmed Iraqis - including women and children - during a series of raids on homes after a roadside bomb killed a Marine and wounded two others.

Anonymous claims responsibility for attacks on U.S. government and recording industry websites

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Video: Anonymous claims responsibility for attacks on U.S. government and recording industry websites 20 Jan 2012 Hacktivist collective Anonymous has launched a series of attacks on U.S. government and recording industry websites following the takedown of file sharing website MegaUpload. In the past year, hacker group Anonymous has launched attacks on companies perceived to be enemies of the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.

Two British soldiers arrested over allegations of sex abuse with 10-year-old children in Afghanistan

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Two British soldiers arrested over allegations of sex abuse with 10-year-old children while they served in Afghanistan 19 Jan 2012 Two British soldiers are being investigated over claims they sexually abused two Afghan children. A sergeant and a private are alleged to have encouraged a boy and a girl aged about ten to touch them inappropriately. The uniformed servicemen were accused of filming the separate incidents before showing the footage to shocked colleagues on their laptop computers. Military police are said to have arrested the pair after complaints from their comrades.

Iraq's Maliki accused of detaining hundreds of political opponents, using torture

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Iraq's Maliki accused of detaining hundreds of political opponents, using torture 19 Jan 2012 Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki's security services have locked up more than 1,000 members of other political parties over the past several months, detaining many of them in secret locations with no access to legal counsel and using "brutal torture" to extract confessions, his chief political rival has charged. Ayad Allawi, the secular Shiite Muslim leader of the mainly Sunni Muslim Iraqiya bloc in parliament, who served as prime minister of the first Iraqi government after the Americans toppled Saddam Hussein, has laid out his allegations in written submissions to Iraq's supreme judicial council. [Saddam Hussein: *Clearly* the better deal.]

Ex-UK official: Spies did use fake rock in Moscow

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Ex-UK official: Spies did use fake rock in Moscow 19 Jan 2012 It was the spy saga that sounded too implausible to be true - British intelligence officers communicating with Russian agents using equipment hidden inside a fake rock left in a Moscow park. Now Tony Blair's ex-chief of staff Jonathan Powell has acknowledged that Russia's accusations against Britain over the 2006 affair were correct, the first official acknowledgment of the espionage plot that soured ties between London and the Kremlin. At the time, Russian state television broadcast footage which appeared to show four British officials placing or retrieving the fake rock, and exposed the sophisticated communications equipment inside the plastic boulder.

US, Filipino forces plan drills near disputed area

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

US, Filipino forces plan drills near disputed area 19 Jan 2012 U.S. and Philippine marines plan to hold combat drills at an oil rig in the South China Sea to bolster the defense of such sensitive facilities in a bold move that may provoke protests from China, which claims waters in or near the location. Lt. Gen. Juancho Sabban, commander of the Philippine military's Western Command, said Thursday the exercises will be held in March or April off western Palawan province and should not alarm China because these will be done within Philippine territorial waters. The drills involve U.S. Marines training their Philippine counterparts in defending and retaking oil and gas rigs captured by security threats like terrorists, Sabban said... [Once again, US tax dollars are funding imperialistic drills to protect corpora-terrorists' oil rigs. --LRP]

Pakistan to reopen NATO routes to Afghanistan: Official

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Pakistan to reopen NATO routes to Afghanistan: Official 19 Jan 2012 Pakistan expects to [insanely] reopen supply routes to Nato forces in Afghanistan, halted after a Nato cross-border air attack killed 24 Pakistani soldiers in November, but will impose tariffs, a senior security official told Reuters on Thursday. The official said the fees were designed to both express continued anger over the November 26 incident, and raise more funds for the state to fight Taliban militants. No date was given for reopening the supply routes.

Federal panel faults Idaho lab for radiation exposure mishap

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Federal panel faults Idaho lab for radiation exposure mishap 18 Jan 2012 The radiation exposure of 16 workers at a nuclear research lab in Idaho stemmed from a failure to properly assess the risks posed by the handling of decades-old plutonium fuel cells, federal investigators concluded on Wednesday. In its report on the November 8 mishap accident at the Idaho National Laboratory, the U.S. Energy Department's Office of Health, Safety and Security also found the lab erred in not activating its emergency plan sooner after the accident, a delay that may have compromised medical treatment of the workers.

TransCanada open to building Keystone in segments

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

TransCanada open to building Keystone in segments 19 Jan 2012 TransCanada Corp may build a $2 billion southern portion of its Keystone XL oil pipeline first following the initial rejection of the full-blown project, which would mesh with one of U.S. President Barack Obama's goals but put it in direct competition with another major proposal. TransCanada had broached the idea of constructing the Gulf Coast expansion part of the Canada-to-Texas oil pipeline before as a way to help alleviate an oil glut at the Cushing, Oklahoma, storage hub and get more crude to Texas refineries, but Chief Executive Russ Girling said it has now gained in priority.

7 Charged as F.B.I. Closes a Top File-Sharing Site

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

7 Charged as F.B.I. Closes a Top File-Sharing Site [And so, Anonymous needs to close the F.B.I. right back.] 20 Jan 2012 20 Jan 2012 In what the federal authorities on Thursday called one of the largest criminal copyright cases ever brought, the Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation seized the Web site Megaupload and charged seven people connected with it with running an international enterprise based on Internet piracy. Coming just a day after civil protests in the United States over proposed antipiracy bills, the arrests were greeted almost immediately with digital Molotov cocktails. The hacker collective that calls itself Anonymous attacked the Web sites of the Justice Department and several major entertainment companies and trade groups in retaliation for Mega-upload's seizure. The Justice Department's site and several others remained inaccessible for much of Thursday afternoon.

Wisconsin recall petition gets over 1 million signatures; Democratic challenger Falk steps forward

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Wisconsin recall petition gets over 1 million signatures; Democratic challenger Falk steps forward 18 Jan 2012 Democrats and their allies in organized labor say they delivered over a million recall petition signatures against Gov. Scott Walker (R) Tuesday, far more than the 540,208 needed to spark a recall election. The filing kicks off the latest phase in a fight over collective bargaining rights that began almost as soon as Walker took office last January. Democrats also filed 845,000 signatures to trigger a recall against Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch (R) and enough to recall four Republican state senators, according to party chairman Mike Tate.

More labs close to deadly bird flu mutations: researcher

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

More labs close to deadly bird flu mutations: researcher 19 Jan 2012 An international debate over whether to censor new research on bird flu may soon prove academic, as other laboratories close in on similar findings showing how one of the most deadly viruses could mutate to be transmitted from one person to another. Bird flu is already one of the most deadly, though it can only be acquired through contact with infected birds. The potential for it to pass between people, through sneezes and coughs, sparks fears of a global pandemic worse than the 1918-19 Spanish flu outbreak that killed an estimated 20 million to 40 million people.

Anonymous hackers claim to have crashed Justice Department website

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

Anonymous hackers claim to have crashed Justice Department website --DoJ: 'The Department of Justice web server hosting justice.gov is currently experiencing a significant increase in activity, resulting in a degradation in service.' [LOL!] 19 Jan 2012 Anonymous, the group of activist hackers, claimed to have crashed the Justice Department website on Thursday in retaliation for prosecutors shutting down the popular file-sharing site Megaupload.com. "The government takes down Megaupload? 15 minutes later Anonymous takes down government & record label sites," the group wrote on its Twitter account. Anonymous claimed it crashed Copyright.gov, but the site seemed to be loading normally. They said FBI.gov would be "next," but the site was not yet having any problems. [*Yet.*] The group claimed that the coordinated attack was its "largest ever." [Awesome!]

US shuts down Megaupload file-sharing site, arrests founders

January 20, 2012 by legitgov

US shuts down Megaupload file-sharing site, arrests founders 19 Jan 2012 Megaupload, one of the internet's largest file-sharing sites, has been shut down by officials in the US. The site's founders have been charged with violating piracy laws. Federal prosecutors have accused it of costing copyright holders more than $500m (£320m) in lost revenue. The firm says it was diligent in responding to complaints about pirated material. The news came a day after anti-piracy law protests, but investigators said they were ordered two weeks ago.

Roadside bomb hurts 20 Afghan civilians

January 19, 2012 by legitgov

Roadside bomb hurts 20 Afghan civilians 19 Jan 2012 At least twenty civilians have been injured after their car ran over a roadside bomb in Afghanistan's western province of Farah, Press TV reports. Mohammad Ghaus Malyar, deputy provincial police chief, told Press TV that the incident took place in Bala Buluk district of the province at around noon time on Thursday. He said that a convoy of civilian vehicles was traveling along a road in the area to attend a funeral ceremony in the nearby Daulat Abad district, when a car touched off a buried explosive device.

Santorum finished 34 votes ahead of Romney in new Iowa tally; votes from 8 precincts missing

January 19, 2012 by legitgov

Santorum finished 34 votes ahead of Romney in new Iowa tally; votes from 8 precincts missing 19 Jan 2012 Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum edged Republican front-runner Mitt Romney in the Iowa caucuses by 34 votes, but can't be declared the winner because results from eight precincts are missing, officials said Thursday. Romney was eight votes ahead of Santorum in the preliminary results of the Jan. 3 caucuses--the much-watched, first-in-the-nation presidential nomination contest. But when the certified tallies were submitted to state GOP officials Wednesday, they showed Romney trailing, 29,839 votes to 29,805. [See: Iowa: 'They don't know where the ballots are, but Romney will win by 14 votes' 04 Jan 2012 Ballots are missing from two counties in Iowa. (Fox News, live report, 01:40 AM ET) 04 Jan 2012 [Of course! Even Karl Rove's 10 million dollars/sleazy pac couldn't seal the deal for corpora-terrorist Mitt Romney -- ergo, ballots are 'missing!' Rove is on the air on Fox, citing a 'credible source' explaining how Mitt Romney's vote may have been 'undercounted' in one Iowa county. On Fox, Rove predicted a Romney victory by 14 votes.]

UK inquiry into rendition and torture collusion scrapped

January 19, 2012 by legitgov

UK inquiry into rendition and torture collusion scrapped 19 Jan 2012 A controversial inquiry into allegations of wrongdoing by the UK's security services is being scrapped. Justice Secretary Ken Clarke said the inquiry into the treatment of detainees could not continue because of a new Metropolitan Police investigation. These follow fresh allegations that officials assisted the rendition of men to Libya, where they were tortured. Mr Clarke said the government was committed to holding a judge-led inquiry once these were investigated.

Perry Suspends Presidential Bid, Backs Gingrich for Nomination

January 19, 2012 by legitgov

Perry Suspends Presidential Bid, Backs Gingrich for Nomination 19 Jan 2012 Texas Governor Rick Perry suspended his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination and endorsed former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. "There is no viable path forward for me in this 2012 campaign," Perry said. "I believe Newt is a visionary conservative who can transform our country." Perry, who has lagged below 10 percent in public opinion polls since the New Hampshire primary, made his announcement in South Carolina, site of the next primary election Jan. 21.

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