Thursday, October 30, 2014

Iran Claims To Have Foiled A Bid To Sabotage Its Nuclear Heavy-Water Tanks

A general view of the Arak heavy-water project, 190 km (120 miles) southwest of Tehran January 15, 2011. Credit: Reuters/ISNA/Hamid Forootan

Iran Says Foils Bid To Sabotage Nuclear Heavy-Water Tanks: Newspaper -- Reuters

(Reuters) - Iran has foiled an attempt to sabotage tanks used for transporting heavy water, which is needed to run some nuclear reactors, and blames a "foreign country" for the incident, a senior official was quoted by local media as saying.

The Islamic Republic is at odds with the West over suspicions it is covertly using its declared civilian atomic energy program to develop a nuclear arms capability. It denies this and has repeatedly accused certain Western states of trying to cripple the program through acts of sabotage.

Asghar Zarean, deputy chief in charge of nuclear protection and security at Iran's Atomic Energy Organization, was quoted by the Tehran newspaper Arman as saying the bid to damage tanks at the Arak heavy-water production plant occurred two weeks ago.

Read more ....

Update: Iran foils attempt to sabotage nuclear heavy-water tanks -- Jerusalem post

My Comment: An explosion at the Parchin military site a few weeks ago ... where a suspected nuclear weapons research program is underway .... and now this .... attempts to stop Iran's nuclear program is stepping up.

An Iran - China Alliance?

The Chinese frigate Changchun during a visit last month to Bandar Abbas in Iran. (Fars)

Iran And China Deepen A ‘Blue Water’ Friendship -- Brian Murphy, Washington Post

Last month, visitors to Bandar Abbas on Iran’s southern coast gathered to witness a never-seen-before event: two Chinese warships pulling into port.

It could be just the start of a budding naval alliance stretching from the Pacific to the Persian Gulf.

Iranian and Chinese commanders last week announced plans for greater maritime cooperation. While the details are vague, it clearly touches ambitions on both sides: Expanding the reach of their warships into faraway seas and new ports of call. And, at the same time, giving a jab at the United States and its preeminent naval power.

Read more ....

My Comment: Iran has the oil .... China wants to buy it .... that sums up their relationship in a nutshell.

20 To 30 Former Guantanamo Bay Detainees Released Within The Last 2 - 3 Years Are Suspected Of Joining The Islamic State

Detainees participate in an early morning prayer session at Camp IV at the detention facility in Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base August 5, 2009. Credit: Reuters/Deborah Gembara

Sources: Former Guantanamo Detainees Suspected Of Joining ISIS, Other Groups In Syria -- FOX News

As many as 20 to 30 former Guantanamo Bay detainees released within the last two to three years are suspected by intelligence and Defense officials of having joined forces with the Islamic State and other militant groups inside Syria, Fox News has learned.

The development has cemented fears that the U.S. military would once again encounter militants taken off the battlefield.

The intelligence offers a mixed picture, and officials say the figures are not exact. But they are certain at least some of the released detainees are fighting with the Islamic State, or ISIS, on the ground inside Syria. Others are believed to be supporting Al Qaeda or the affiliated al-Nusra Front in Syria.

Read more ....

My Comment:Why does this not surprise me.

Islamic State Gunmen 'Committed Massacre' Of 150 Sunnis In Iraq's Anbar Province


Reports: 150 Bodies Found In Iraq Mass Grave -- SKY News

The victims are among more than 300 men aged between 18 and 55 seized by Islamic State this week, tribal sheikhs say.

The bodies of 150 members of an Iraqi Sunni tribe opposed to Islamic State (IS) have reportedly been found in a mass grave.

The Reuters news agency quoted a security official saying 150 men from the Albu Nimr tribe had been taken from their villages near Ramadi on Wednesday night and then killed.

In a separate incident 70 people from the same tribe were found dead in another mass grave near the city of Hit.

They are believed to have been members of the police and an anti-IS militia called Sahwa, or Awakening.

Read more ....

More News On Reports Of A Massacre Of Sunni Tribesman In Anbar Province

Hundreds of Iraqi tribesmen opposed to Islamic State found in mass graves -- Reuters
Mass grave with 150 bodies found in Iraq -- The Telegraph
ISIS executes 220 tribesmen in Iraq -- Alahkbar
Iraq Isis News: Bodies of 150 Sunni Tribesmen Found in Anbar Province Mass Grave -- IBTimes
Islamic State group kill and bury 150 Iraqi Sunni tribesmen -- Irish Times

WNU Editor: The above tweet is from a reported massacre in the Iraqi city of Hit this week.


Palestinian Leader Mahmoud Abbas Describe Closure Of Jerusalem Holy Site As A "Declaration Of War"

Palestinians are seen during clashes with Israeli police forces in the Abu Tor neighbourhood of east Jerusalem October 30, 2014. Credit: REUTERS/Ammar Awad

Jerusalem Holy Site Closure 'Declaration Of War' - Abbas -- BBC

A spokesman for Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas has described the closure of a disputed Jerusalem holy site as a "declaration of war".

The move came amid tension after the shooting of a Jewish activist. Israel's PM called for calm, saying Mr Abbas was responsible for escalating tensions.

Yehuda Glick, a campaigner for greater Jewish prayer rights at the Temple Mount/al-Haram al-Sharif, was wounded.

Israeli police later killed a Palestinian suspected of shooting him.

The man, named as 32-year-old Moataz Hejazi, was shot after opening fire when police surrounded his home.

Read more ....

More News On Today's Unrest In Jerusalem

‘Declaration of war’: Palestinian leader attacks Israel over closure of disputed holy site, as violence erupts in wake of assassination attempt on Jewish hardliner -- Daily Mail
Clashes erupt as Israeli police kill Palestinian suspected of shooting Jewish far-rightist -- Reuters
‘Declaration of war’: Abbas warns over 1st Al-Aqsa Mosque closure since 1967 -- RT
Israel Blocks Access to Contested Holy Site in Jerusalem -- NYT
Israel blocks Jerusalem holy site amid rising tensions after activist shot -- Washington Post
Israeli security and Palestinians clash in East Jerusalem -- Euronews
Tensions flare as Israeli police kill suspect in Temple Mount shooting -- CSM
Abbas Says Closing Temple Mount 'A Declaration of War' -- Arutz Sheva
Palestinian Suspect in Jerusalem Drive-By Attack Shot Dead -- WSJ

Burkina Faso's Parliament Set On Fire As Chaos Spreads Throughout The Capital



Torching The Heart Of Power: Protesters In Burkina Faso Set Fire To PARLIAMENT Amid Violent Demonstrations Against President's Bid To Extend His Rule -- Daily Mail

* Crowds of demonstrators smashed through heavy security cordon to storm National Assembly building in the capital
* Black smoke billowed from smashed windows at the parliament building where several offices were ravaged by flames
* One man killed in violence which forced government to call off controversial vote to extend the President's 27-year rule
* EU has warned that extending President Blaise Compaore's leadership could jeopardise stability in west African nation

Angry demonstrators went on the rampage in Burkina Faso today in protest at plans to allow the President to extend his 27-year rule, setting the parliament on fire and wreaking havoc across the capital.

Crowds of people broke through a heavy security cordon and stormed the National Assembly building in Ouagadougou, ransacking offices and setting fire to cars.

One man was killed in the chaos that erupted in the west African nation shortly before lawmakers were due to vote on the controversial legislation.

Read more ....

More News On The Crisis In Burkina Faso

Protesters march on Burkina presidency after burning parliament -- Reuters
Burkina Faso parliament set ablaze -- BBC
Burkina Faso protesters march on presidency after burning parliament -- CBC
Burkina Faso Protesters Seek Compaore Ouster as Clashes Escalate -- Bloomberg Businessweek
In Burkina Faso, Crowds Protest Leader's Plan to Extend Rule -- NYT
Burkina Faso: Protesters storm parliament over term limit vote -- AP
Protests in Burkina Faso spiraling out of control -- Mashable

Update: Burkina Faso scraps bill to extend presidents term amid protests -- Reuters

NATO Reports 'Unusual High Level' Of Russian Air Activity



Nato Reports Rise In Russia Military Flights Over Europe -- BBC

Nato has reported an "unusual" increase in Russian military aircraft conducting manoeuvres over European airspace over the last two days.

A Nato statement said four groups of aircraft, including Tu-95 Bear bombers and MiG-31 fighters, were tracked over seas and the Atlantic Ocean.

Fighter aircraft from Norway, Britain, Portugal, Germany and Turkey were scrambled in response.

Tensions between Russia and Nato states have soared over the Ukraine crisis.

The US and EU imposed sanctions on Russia after its annexation of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula earlier this year.

Read more ....



More News ON NATO Reporting An 'Unusual High Level' Of Russian Air Activity

NATO jets track 'unusual' Russian bomber sorties -- Reuters
'Unusual' Russian flights concern NATO -- CNN
NATO says Russian jets, bombers circle Europe in unusual incidents -- Washington Post
NATO Tracks Russian Warplanes in European Airspace -- VOA
Nato jets intercept Russian warplanes following 'unusual level of air activity' -- The Guardian
NATO accuses Russian bombers of flying close to its airspace -- Euronews
Jets scrambled for large-scale Russian activity in European airspace: NATO -- Washington Times
NATO Accuses Russian Military Aircraft of Flagrantly Violating European Airspace -- Time
NATO reports 'unusual' spike in Russian military flights in the past 2 days -- FOX News/AP
Russia conducts maneuvers in NATO airspace as it waits for French warships -- Deutsche Welle
Merkel not acutely worried about Russian violations of airspace -- Reuters
NATO’s allied command in Europe claims Russian Air Force showing unusual activity -- ITAR-TASS

RAF Jets Intercept And Threaten To Shoot Down A Latvian Cargo Plane Over Southern England


'You Will Be Shot Down': What RAF Typhoon Pilot Told Latvian Cargo Plane After It Sparked Terror Alert By Veering Off Course Over London Forcing Fighter Jets To Scramble -- Daily Mail

* Typhoons were scrambled from RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire, this afternoon
* A Latvian-registered plane was intercepted over Kent after 'causing concern'
* Flight mapping specialists said plane took unexpected detour over London
* Fighters escorted Russian made Antonov An-26 cargo airliner into Stansted
* Audio emerged afterwards appearing to show RAF pilot speaking to crew
* It said: ‘If you do not respond immediately to orders you will be shot down’
* MoD refused to comment on clip, which is doing rounds on social media
* Aviation expert said response was 'incase of another 9/11 of Parliament'
* Essex police spokesman said incident was due to a 'loss of communication'
* Incident created a dramatic sonic boom, heard across a 50-mile radius
* Explosion-like sound reported across Kent, Sussex, Hertfordshire and Essex

Two RAF fighters which scrambled across Britain to intercept a foreign aircraft apparently warned the plane would be 'shot down', after it sparked a terror alert by taking an unscheduled detour over London.

The Typhoons from RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire, flew to Kent, south east England, at supersonic speeds to dramatically halt the plane on its way to Birmingham airport after it 'caused concern' to air traffic controllers.

The swoop, which resulted in the Lativan-registered plane being grounded at Stansted airport, sparked a massive sonic boom which was heard across a 50-mile radius.

Read more ....

More News On Two RAF Jets Intercepting And Threatening To Shoot Down A Latvian Cargo Plane Over Southern England

RAF jets intercept Latvian cargo plane over Kent -- BBC
British jets intercept Latvian plane over southern England -- Reuters
RAF Typhoons escort foreign plane into Stansted Airport -- The Telegraph
RAF jets scrambled to intercept plane -- Independent.ie
RAF fighter jets escort cargo plane to Stansted Airport -- FOX News/AP
The Russians are coming! UK media hypes up RAF interception of Latvian plane -- RT

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Editor's Note

This is just a reminder to all of my regular readers that I am busy finishing up on a web-project .... so blogging is going to be light for the next few days (I should be finished by this Sunday). As for right now .... alas .... blogging will return tomorrow morning.

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- August 29, 2014



Wishful Thinking In The U.S. Plans Against The Islamic State -- David Ignatius, Washington Post

A glimpse of the anxiety sweeping the Arab world surfaced last week when an Arab woman complained during a talk in Amman at the Columbia Global Center for the Middle East. She said my speech’s title about the “crisis” in the region wasn’t accurate. The correct word was “disintegration.” The audience cheered loudly.

The Arab world is suffering a sense of vertigo these days. Extremists from the Islamic State, who have seemingly arisen out of nowhere, have burst through the gates of power. Political elites are confused and frightened. They’re angry at the United States (as always). But at the same time, they want the United States to explain a strategy for combating a group that threatens every structure of stability, including borders.

Read more ....

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- August 29, 2014

Why Kobani could be an opportunity for Turkey, the Kurds and the U.S. -- Gönül Tol, Special to CNN

Kurdish women a force to be reckoned with for ISIS -- Ivan Watson and Gul Tuysuz, CNN

The Kurds' Lonely Fight against Islamic State Terror -- Ralf Hoppe, Maximilian Popp, Christoph Reuter and Jonathan Stock, Spiegel Online

The U.S.-Iran non-alliance alliance against Islamic State -- Aki Peritz and Faris Alikhan, Reuters

How Yemen Is Making ISIS and al-Qaeda Even More Dangerous -- Riyadh Mohammed, The Fiscal Times

ISIS and Vietnam -- Thomas Friedman, NYT

With France, Israel opposed, why is a deal with Iran an almost done deal? -- Freddy Eytan, i24 News

Has a deal with Iran stalled? -- Jennifer Rubin, Washington Post

Obama and Netanyahu: A fractured alliance becomes open conflict -- David Horowitz, Times of Israel

Crisis: Are U.S.-Israeli Relations Really Doomed? -- Jacob Heilbrunn, National Interest

Will U.S. Military Come Back to Philippines? -- Jason Strother, World Crunch

Asia’s security relations continue to evolve -- Michael Auslin, AEI

Can Ukraine endure a winter without Russian gas? -- David J. Unger, CSM

Why is Pentagon quarantining troops who had no contact with Ebola patients? -- AnnA Mulrine, CSM

Maine nurse vows to sue to lift Ebola quarantine: How will she fare in court? -- Henry Gass, CSM

World News Briefs -- October 29, 2014 (Evening Edition)

Convoy of peshmerga vehicles is escorted by Turkish Kurds on their way to the Turkish-Syrian border, in Kiziltepe, near the southeastern city of Mardin, Oct. 29, 2014.

Kurds Welcome Backup to End ISIS Siege of Syrian Border Town -- Time

Turkey allows Kurdish troops to cross into Kobani.

Foreign Fighters Pouring into Syria Faster Than Ever, Officials SayAustralia’s Top ISIS Militant Killed: SourcesEric Holder Says Only Denzel Could Play Him in Movie NBC NewsForeign Fighters Are Pouring Into Syria Faster Than Ever: Officials NBC NewsSkin Cancer U? Students Tan on Campus at Top Colleges NBC News

The troops from the Syrian Free Army crossed into Kobani from Turkey on Wednesday to stiffen the town’s resistance to fighters from the Islamic State in Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS). A further 150 troops with artillery are expected to arrive later on Wednesday from the Kurdish Regional Government(KRG) in Iraq.

Read more ....

MIDDLE EAST

Islamic State executes at least 40 tribal and Iraqi government fighters.

“No ISIS retreat from Kobane,” says British ISIS captive John Cantlie.

Islamic State crisis: Syria rebel forces boost Kobane defence. Syrian rebels enter Kobani from Turkey with peshmerga troops en route.

IS attack on Syria oil field 'kills 30'.

U.S. forces hit Islamic State 'command node' in new strikes: U.S..

Iraqi forces advance in new bid to end Baiji refinery siege.

Iraq's Abadi struggles to gain Sunni tribal support.

Israel 'assumes' Hezbollah is digging tunnels.

Binyamin Netanyahu 'chickenshit', say US officials in explosive interview. White House tries to ease flare-up over Netanyahu insults.

Israel's settlement plans cast doubt on peace commitment: U.N..

ASIA

Myanmar government and political groups to meet on Friday.

Jamaat chief sentenced to death in Bangladesh. Bangladesh deploys thousands of police after war crimes death sentence.

Exclusive: India uncovers suspected plot to assassinate Bangladeshi PM - security officials.

Central Asia pays the price for Russia's tumbling ruble.

South Korea: Kim Jong Un had ankle surgery to remove cyst.

Sri Lanka landslide: '100 feared dead'. Over 150 missing in Sri Lanka mudslide.

Myanmar's president, army chief to meet Suu Kyi.

China could 'punish' Hong Kong over protests, says ex-HK central bank chief.

New Zealand to hold flag referendum in 2016.

AFRICA

South Sudan rebels say they seize oil hub Bentiu; government denies it.

French soldier killed during clash with Islamist militants in Mali.

Zambia's president Michael Sata dies in London. Zambian President Sata death: White interim leader appointed.

Number of Ebola cases hits 13,700 — WHO.

Former NATO chiefs urge alliance to fight Ebola.

Egypt to clear residents from Gaza border.

Thousands protest in Burkina for second day, U.S. joins outcry. Spike in Eritreans fleeing into Ethiopia.

U.N. peacekeepers free 67 hostages in Central African Republic.

UN chief urges aid to avert new Somalia famine.

Nigeria's Jonathan to run for president again in February.

EUROPE

RAF jet threatens to 'shoot down' cargo plane in Kent.

NATO jets track 'unusual' Russian bomber sorties.

EU, U.N. condemn Ukraine rebels' election plans.

Ukraine's Yatseniuk sees himself staying on as prime minister.

Chances of striking gas deal between Russia, Ukraine at 50/50 — EU official. Gas deal still eludes Ukraine and Russia at EU talks.

EU to push for resolution of Ukraine, Russia gas dispute.

Putin spokesman tells press to 'shut trap' on cancer rumours.

France to decide on warship sale to Russia in November.

Greece boosts Navy mission amid spat with Turkey.

Hundreds more migrants storm Morocco-Spain border.

AMERICAS

Maine Gov. Paul LePage sends State Police to enforce Ebola quarantine.

Quarantine-like monitoring approved for U.S. troops on Ebola mission. Hagel orders 21-day quarantine for all military personnel returning from Ebola mission in West Africa.

Maine seeks to enforce Ebola quarantine of defiant nurse.

U.S. beefs up security at federal buildings.

Canadian lawmakers strike defiant tone in return to Parliament.

Kerry: US to intensify law enforcement, intel sharing with Canada to counter terrorism.

Venezuela recalls ambassador to Spain over Rajoy comments.

Poll: Americans grim on economy ahead of midterms.

NYPD scanning the sky for new terrorism threat.

Unmanned US rocket Antares explodes during launch.

TERRORISM/THE LONG WAR

Al Qaeda seizes territory from moderate Syrian group.

Islamic State has a guide to shoot down Apache helicopters with MANPADS.

Egypt calls on allies for support in its 'war on terrorism'.

ECONOMY/FINANCE/BUSINESS

Fifty-one countries sign OECD pact to tackle tax cheats.

US Federal Reserve set to end stimulus programme. Federal Reserve ends quantitative easing bond-buying program.

OPEC's Badri sees little output change in 2015, says don't panic on oil drop.

Ferrari to split with parent company, Fiat Chrysler.

People trust NSA more than Google, survey says.

NYPD Expressing Their Concerns That Terrorists May Use Drones



NYPD Scanning The Sky For New Terrorism Threat -- CBS

For the last year, the country's largest police force has been increasingly concerned about a potential terror attack from the air by a drone armed with a deadly weapon.

Now, they are far along in planning a response to that possible security threat, reports CBS News correspondent Jeff Pegues.

"We look at it as something that could be a terrorist's tool," New York Police Department Deputy Chief Salvatore DiPace said.

For the first time, he is publicly acknowledging why the NYPD is paying close attention to America's fascination with drones and the potential that they could deliver a terrorist attack.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: The British were the first to voice these concerns .... Report: Drones Can Be Used By Terrorists To Take Down Passenger Planes.

Uproar In Italy Over U.S. Troops Being ' Ebola Quarantine' At An Amercain Base Near Venice Rather Than In The U.S.

The United States, Britain and France have all sent resources to West Africa to combat the spread of Ebola after the disease infected more than 10,000 people and killed more than 5,000. Daily Mail

Uproar Over US Troops' Ebola Quarantine In Italy -- The Local

The decision to put a dozen American soldiers returning from Liberia into quarantine for Ebola at their base near Venice rather than in the United States sparked controversy in Italy on Wednesday.

"They shouldn't have been sent here, they should do their quarantine for Ebola at home," said the president of the region's assembly, Luca Zaia, insisting "it would have been more respectful" of the United States to have "thought about the risks posed to local citizens".

The Messaggero daily spoke of fears among the local population, with a rise in the number of calls to the emergency services from worried citizens.

Soldiers from the base being given a wide berth in nearby pubs.

Zaia, a member of the anti-immigrant Northern League party, was not the only one to object to the US decision to quarantine the soldiers in Italy.

Read more ....

My Comment: Ever since this story broke out earlier this week .... US soldiers returning from Ebola mission in Liberia quarantined for 21 days at Army base in Italy (Daily Mail) ... calls for these U.S. soldiers to leave Italy have increased. My prediction .... if one of these soldiers has Ebola, expect these protests to increase exponentially.

A U.S. - Iran Detente?



U.S., Iran Relations Move To Détente -- Wall Street Journal

Interests Align Over Fight Against Islamic State, Other Policies

The Obama administration and Iran, engaged in direct nuclear negotiations and facing a common threat from Islamic State militants, have moved into an effective state of détente over the past year, according to senior U.S. and Arab officials.

The shift could drastically alter the balance of power in the region, and risks alienating key U.S. allies such as Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates who are central to the coalition fighting Islamic State. Sunni Arab leaders view the threat posed by Shiite Iran as equal to or greater than that posed by the Sunni radical group Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL.

Read more ....

More News On Reports Of A Growing U.S. - Iran Detente

US-Iran ties 'move into state of detente,' officials tell Wall Street Journal -- Jerusalem Post
Officials Reveal US is Cozying Up to Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas -- Israel Sheva
U.S., Iran Enter State of Detente After Facing Common Islamic State Threat -- Algemeiner/JNS.org
Report: US, Iran move into 'state of detente' -- Israel Hayom
US and Iran are in a state of detente, officials say -- i24 News

My Comment: The Israelis are clearly concerned that this is actually happening, and I suspect that in the next day or two we are going to hear Arab reaction to this Wall Street Journal report.

Former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Tells Frontline That 'Everyone' Warned The Obama Administration About ISIS But The White House Did Nothing



My Comment: There are two things about this story that surprises me .... former U.S. ambassador to Iraq James Jeffrey is from this administration .... was appointed by President Obama (he served from 2010 to 2012), but he has decided to now openly criticize the White House narrative on the rise of the Islamic State. Second .... it is the media organization Frontline/PBS that is reimporting this story .... not a conservative based news outlet.

The full Frontline Documentary on "The Rise Of Isis" can be seen here. It is a must see.

Lebanon’s Pot Farmers Declare War Against The Islamic State



Lebanon’s Pot Farmers Gear Up For A Fight With Islamic State -- Washington Post

The cultivation of marijuana is illegal in Lebanon, but that doesn't mean people don't grow it. The industry boomed during the country's lengthy civil war, earning millions for the impoverished yet fertile Bekaa Valley province, and Lebanese authorities have struggled to control it ever since. In 2012, the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime listed Lebanon as one of the five "main countries producing cannabis resin," yielding an amount similar to Pakistan's production.

Political instability in Lebanon has often led to boom times for pot farmers. "The worse the security situation is in Lebanon, the more we can grow," one farmer told the Christian Science Monitor in 2007. As such, the chaos in neighboring Syria appears to have been a boon for the farmers, with troops diverted to the border and annual cannabis-eradication drives skipped.

Read more ....

My Comment: Drugs has always been a big business in Lebanon. There will be blow-back against the Islamic State should they move in. The above video shows the burning of a marijuana field in Syria by Islamic State fighters.

The Battle For Kobani -- News Updates October 29, 2014



Kurdish Convoy Heads To Syria To Take On Islamic State -- Reuters

(Reuters) - A convoy of Iraqi peshmerga fighters and weaponry made its way across southeastern Turkey on Wednesday en route for the Syrian town of Kobani to try to help fellow Kurds break an Islamic State siege which has defied U.S.-led air strikes.

Kobani, on the border with Turkey, has been under assault from Islamic State militants for more than a month and its fate has become a test of the U.S.-led coalition's ability to combat the Sunni insurgents.

Weeks of air strikes on Islamic State positions around Kobani and the deaths of hundreds of their fighters have failed to break the siege. The Kurds and their international allies hope the arrival of the peshmerga, along with heavier weapons, can turn the tide.

Read more ....

More News On The War Against The Islamic State

Iraqi Peshmerga set to join Kobane battle -- Al Jazeera
Peshmerga, rebels move to reinforce Syria's Kobane -- AFP
Free Syrian Army fighters join Kurdish militias in defense of Kobane -- UPI
Iraqi Kurds, Syrian rebels join fight against Islamic State in Kobane -- CSM
Iraqi Kurdish Forces Enter Turkey on Way to Fight Islamic State in Syria -- WSJ
Iraqi forces arrive in Turkey to join battle for Kobane -- Washington Post
Islamic State crisis: Syria rebel forces boost Kobane defence -- BBC
Iraqi peshmerga arrive in Turkey, poised to enter Kobani -- Today's Zaman
US renews airstrikes against 'Islamic State' as reinforcements head to Kobani -- Deutsche Welle
US Warplanes Bomb ISIL near Kobani As Peshmerga Move to Aid Kurds -- Al-Manar
U.S. conducts 14 more airstrikes against ISIS in Iraq and Syria -- CBS/AP
Centcom Officials Describe Latest Inherent Resolve Airstrikes -- US Department of Defense
Iraqi forces advance in new bid to end Baiji refinery siege -- Reuters
IS attack on Syria oil field 'kills 30' -- AFP
Islamic State fights Syrian army for control of gas field, kills 30 fighters -- DNA
Islamic State 'kills 30 Sunni tribesmen' in Iraq -- BBC
Residents: Islamic State group kills 30 Iraqi men -- AP
Isis Iraq News: 30 Sunni Tribesmen Executed by Islamic State in Anbar Province -- IBTimes
IS jihadists 'execute 46 tribesmen' in Iraq's Anbar -- i24 News
Iraq's Abadi struggles to gain Sunni tribal support -- Reuters
Successful US Airdrop For Refugees Fleeing Islamic State Terrorists -- Washington Free Beacon
Peshmerga to Kobani: Symbolic, but not 'tectonic,' analyst says -- Michael Pearson, CNN

Military And Intelligence News Briefs -- October 29, 2014

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks about the U.S. response to Ebola from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington October 28, 2014. Credit: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque

Obama Sees Different Ebola Rules For U.S. Military Than For Civilians -- Reuters

(Reuters) - President Barack Obama on Tuesday appeared to back more rigorous procedures for dealing with soldiers returning from missions to Ebola-hit West African countries, even as he criticized moves by some U.S. states to quarantine returning civilian health workers.

Obama said that American military personnel were in a "different situation" compared with healthcare workers. While civilians may be discouraged from volunteering to help fight the Ebola if they are facing quarantine on their return, troops were sent as part of their mission and could expect such inconveniences.

Read more ....

Military And Intelligence News Briefs -- October 29, 2014

White House: ‘Not unusual’ for Ebola quarantine rules to differ for military, general population -- Washington Times

Obama's quarantine remarks draws fire from military spouses -- The Hill

Israel's ranked as Middle East's best military -- UPI

Russian army beefs up Artic presence over Western threat -- RT

Contract soldiers outnumber conscripts in Russian military – Defense Minister -- RT

Russia to Deliver Four S-300 Missile Complexes to Belarus by Year's End: Defense Minister -- RIA Novosti

Russia ready to deliver US supplies to ISS after Antares rocket explodes -- RT

Rosoboronexport to Attend Handover of First Mistral Warship on November 14: Rogozin -- RIA Novosti

U.S. Navy Impressed with New Russian Attack Boat -- USNI

Talks on Russian Su-35 Fighter Deliveries to Beijing Ongoing, Contract Being Clarified -- RIA Novosti

China to buy 5,000 Russian air-to-air missiles: Japanese report -- Want China Times

China aims to reform military, online media -- UPI

Singapore Improves Its Defense With Giant Blimp -- RIA Novosti

Germany Making Military Service More Attractive -- AP

A new stealth corvette from France -- Defense Update

British Spies Allowed to Access U.S. Data Without a Warrant -- National Journal

UK forced to admit GCHQ can access foreign-gathered data without warrant -- RT

Pentagon reaches deal on F-35s for Israel, Japan -- The Hill

Pentagon: Latest F-35 Deal Shaves Unit Cost by 4% -- DoD Buzz

US Commander in Korea: A-10 Warthog Will be Missed -- DoD Buzz

Newest Fire Scout Preps for Sea Testing -- Defense Tech

New competition launched in development of U.S. military’s ‘Iron Man’ suit -- Washington Post

NSA Chief Warns Companies Against Revenge Hacking -- National Journal

Banks Need to Do Better at Serving Military Bases, Study Says -- NBC

In Cold War, U.S. Spy Agencies Used 1,000 Nazis -- NYT

Inside 'Black Dart,' the US Military's War On Drones -- VICE News

DoD Changes How it Accounts for Iraq, Syria Costs -- Defense News

Report: Ex-Pentagon Wounded Warrior Boss Bullied Staff, Broke Laws -- Military.com

Obama's top military advisers: 'Useful idiots' or good military officers? -- J.D. Gordon, FOX News

At least 2,207 US military deaths in Afghanistan since 2001 -- AP

Senior White House Official Calls Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu 'Chickenshit'


The Crisis In U.S.-Israel Relations Is Officially Here -- Jeffrey Goldberg, The Atlantic

The Obama administration's anger is "red-hot" over Israel's settlement policies, and the Netanyahu government openly expresses contempt for Obama's understanding of the Middle East. Profound changes in the relationship may be coming.

The other day I was talking to a senior Obama administration official about the foreign leader who seems to frustrate the White House and the State Department the most. “The thing about Bibi is, he’s a chickenshit,” this official said, referring to the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, by his nickname.

This comment is representative of the gloves-off manner in which American and Israeli officials now talk about each other behind closed doors, and is yet another sign that relations between the Obama and Netanyahu governments have moved toward a full-blown crisis. The relationship between these two administrations— dual guarantors of the putatively “unbreakable” bond between the U.S. and Israel—is now the worst it's ever been, and it stands to get significantly worse after the November midterm elections. By next year, the Obama administration may actually withdraw diplomatic cover for Israel at the United Nations, but even before that, both sides are expecting a showdown over Iran, should an agreement be reached about the future of its nuclear program.

Read more ....

More News On A Senior White House Official Calling Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu 'Chickenshit' And ‘Aspergery'

Binyamin Netanyahu 'chickenshit', say US officials in explosive interview -- The Guardian
Report: Senior administration officials call Israel’s Netanyahu ‘chickens–t’ and ‘Aspergery’ -- Washington Post
White House tries to ease flare-up over Netanyahu insults -- FOX News
White House to Haaretz: 'Chickenshit' jibe against Netanyahu inappropriate, counterproductive -- Haaretz
White House rejects insults of Netanyahu -- USA Today
U.S. Denies Crisis With Israel After Reported Netanyahu Insult -- NBC
Israel's Netanyahu fumes at reported U.S. slur -- Reuters
Israeli Leader Lashes Back at Harsh US Criticism -- AP
Netanyahu Responds to U.S. Official: I Am Not a 'Chickensh—t' -- Bloomberg
Netanyahu Responds To ‘Chickens***’ Comment: ‘I Am Being Attacked Because I Am Willing To Defend The State Of Israel’ -- CBS News
Israel PM vows no concessions after US criticism -- AFP
US official calls Netanyahu "chickenshit"; Israeli lawmaker calls US a third world country -- VOX News
Why are U.S. officials trash-talking Netanyahu? -- Daniel W. Drezner, Washington Post
Some background to the “Chickenshit” controversy -- David Bernstein, Washington Post
The ‘Chickenshitgate’ Fallout for America, Israel, and the Middle East -- Ben Cohen, Algemeiner

World News Briefs -- October 29, 2014



Hagel Orders 21-Day Ebola Quarantine for Returning U.S. Troops -- Time

Military commanders had recommended that Hagel implement a quarantine.

U.S. troops who are returning from Ebola missions in West Africa will be kept in supervised isolation for 21 days upon their return home, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Wednesday.

Military leaders recommended the 21-day quarantine, which goes beyond precautions advised by the Obama administration for civilians, the Associated Press reports. President Obama has said that the military’s situation is different, however, partly because the troops are not in West Africa by choice.

Read more ....

MIDDLE EAST

Islamic State crisis: Syria rebel forces boost Kobane defence. Syrian rebels enter Kobani from Turkey with peshmerga troops en route.

IS attack on Syria oil field 'kills 30'.

U.S. forces hit Islamic State 'command node' in new strikes: U.S..

Iraqi forces advance in new bid to end Baiji refinery siege.

Iraq's Abadi struggles to gain Sunni tribal support.

Israel 'assumes' Hezbollah is digging tunnels.

Binyamin Netanyahu 'chickenshit', say US officials in explosive interview. White House tries to ease flare-up over Netanyahu insults.

ASIA

Jamaat chief sentenced to death in Bangladesh. Bangladesh deploys thousands of police after war crimes death sentence.

Exclusive: India uncovers suspected plot to assassinate Bangladeshi PM - security officials.

Central Asia pays the price for Russia's tumbling ruble.

South Korea: Kim Jong Un had ankle surgery to remove cyst.

Sri Lanka landslide: '100 feared dead'. Over 150 missing in Sri Lanka mudslide.

Myanmar's president, army chief to meet Suu Kyi.

China could 'punish' Hong Kong over protests, says ex-HK central bank chief.

New Zealand to hold flag referendum in 2016.

AFRICA

Zambia's president Michael Sata dies in London. Zambian President Sata death: White interim leader appointed.

Number of Ebola cases hits 13,700 — WHO.

Former NATO chiefs urge alliance to fight Ebola.

Egypt to clear residents from Gaza border.

Thousands protest in Burkina for second day, U.S. joins outcry. Spike in Eritreans fleeing into Ethiopia.

UN chief urges aid to avert new Somalia famine.

Nigeria's Jonathan to run for president again in February.

EUROPE

Ukraine's Yatseniuk sees himself staying on as prime minister.

Chances of striking gas deal between Russia, Ukraine at 50/50 — EU official.

EU to push for resolution of Ukraine, Russia gas dispute.

France to decide on warship sale to Russia in November.

Greece boosts Navy mission amid spat with Turkey.

Hundreds more migrants storm Morocco-Spain border.

AMERICAS

Hagel orders 21-day quarantine for all military personnel returning from Ebola mission in West Africa.

Maine seeks to enforce Ebola quarantine of defiant nurse.

U.S. beefs up security at federal buildings.

Canadian lawmakers strike defiant tone in return to Parliament.

Kerry: US to intensify law enforcement, intel sharing with Canada to counter terrorism.

Venezuela recalls ambassador to Spain over Rajoy comments.

Poll: Americans grim on economy ahead of midterms.

NYPD scanning the sky for new terrorism threat.

Unmanned US rocket Antares explodes during launch.

TERRORISM/THE LONG WAR

Al Qaeda seizes territory from moderate Syrian group.

Islamic State has a guide to shoot down Apache helicopters with MANPADS.

Egypt calls on allies for support in its 'war on terrorism'.

ECONOMY/FINANCE/BUSINESS

US Federal Reserve set to end stimulus programme.

OPEC's Badri sees little output change in 2015, says don't panic on oil drop.

Ferrari to split with parent company, Fiat Chrysler.

People trust NSA more than Google, survey says.

White House Computers Breached By Suspected Russian Hackers


Hackers Breach Some White House Computers -- Washington Post

Hackers thought to be working for the Russian government breached the unclassified White House computer networks in recent weeks, sources said, resulting in temporary disruptions to some services while cybersecurity teams worked to contain the intrusion.

White House officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation, said that the intruders did not damage any of the systems and that, to date, there is no evidence the classified network was hacked.

Read more ....

More News On Reports That Russian Hackers Breached White House Computers

White House says it has addressed computer threat -- AP
Hackers Breach White House's Unclassified Computer Network -- ABC News
White House Tightens Computer Security After Possible Breach -- Bloomberg
White House computer network 'hacked' -- BBC
Hackers 'working for Russian government breach White House computer network' forcing staff to change passwords as experts try to contain the intrusion -- Daily Mail
Russia reportedly suspected of being behind breach of White House computers -- FOX News
White House hacked (Russia involved?) -- USA Today
Security at White House ramped up as suspicious cyber activity detected -- Independent.ie
Russian Hackers Infiltrated Unclassified White House Computer Networks, Officials Say -- IBTimes
White House computer network hacked; temporary loss of some devices -- Washington Times
White House Computers Breached By Hackers -- SKY News
White House’s unclassified computer network hacked -- The Guardian

Why Is The Pentagon's Ebola Protocols Different From Those Being Applied To Civilians?

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is expected to soon decide whether to subject all U.S. troops returning from Ebola response efforts to a "quarantine-like" period.

WH: Army Ebola Policy Not Needed For Civilians -- The Hill

The Army's decision to quarantine soldiers returning from West Africa is related to logistical concerns, meaning that the same protocols would not be appropriate for civilian doctors traveling back to the United States from the region, the White House said Tuesday.

"The science would not back that up," press secretary Josh Earnest said. "In fact, implementing this military policy in a civilian context would only have the effect of hindering our Ebola response by dissuading civilian doctors and nurses from traveling to West Africa to stop the outbreak in its tracks."

On Monday, the Army announced that soldiers returning from West Africa would be held in Italy for three weeks before they would be allowed to travel to bases in the United States or other parts of the world.

Read more ....

More News On The Pentagon's Ebola Protocols

Hagel considering Ebola quarantine for all troops deployed to West Africa -- The Hill
Hagel to decide if troops will be quarantined -- Army Times
Chuck Hagel Considering New Military-Wide Ebola Policy -- AP
Spokesman: No DoD Decision on Monitoring Returning Troops -- US Department of Defense
Pentagon eyes strict monitoring for troops returning from Ebola effort -- Reuters
Joint Chiefs Urge Quarantine for U.S. Troops Back From West Africa -- WSJ
US Military Leaders: Monitor Troops Returning From Ebola Missions -- VOA
Hagel’s Made ‘No Decision’ on Dempsey’s Ebola Quarantine Recommendations -- PJ Media
Conflicting Ebola guidelines put US defense secretary in a tough spot -- The Guardian

My Comment: The White House and the CDC are saying that quarantines are not necessary for most cases .... while the medical specialists in the Pentagon are saying something different. Talk abut a disconnect and mixed messages. As to who is right .... I know a friend who is an epidemiologist .... he tells me that anyone coming from a hot zone should be quarantined. As he told me .... this is why dogs are quarantined in Hawaii for 120 days and why Hawaii does not have a rabies problem. If applied properly .... quarantines have ALWAYS worked.