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Archive for June, 2007

Chávez prepares himself to the war against USA, a war that only his megalomaniac mind can see. But, of course, the weapons are for … a media war.

Venezuelan President Chavez in Russia for Possible Weapons Deal – Voice of America


Caribbean Net News

Venezuelan President Chavez in Russia for Possible Weapons Deal
Voice of America – 47 minutes ago
By Peter Fedynsky

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is inMoscow for discussions with Russian President Vladimir Putin about apossible arms deal and expanded economic ties between the twocountries. VOA Correspondent Peter Fedynsky reports from the Russiancapital.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez speaks while opening Venezuela's cultural center in Moscow, 28 June 2007
Hugo Chavez speaks at opening of Venezuela’s cultural center in Moscow, 28 June 2007

PresidentChavez is expected to meet with his Russian counterpart Thursdayevening in the Kremlin. Speaking during the day at the opening of aLatin American cultural center in Moscow, the Venezuelan leader said hedoes not rule out the development of nuclear energy in his country. Ina swipe at the United States, Mr. Chavez also said American troopsshould leave Iraq, and that Iran has a right to nuclear technology.

Mr. Chavez says that Iran has the right to a peaceful atomic energy industry, because it is a sovereign state.

His Moscow agenda includes the possible purchase of Russiandiesel-electric submarines, armed with missiles. Mr. Chavez is alsointerested in buying the Russian TOR-1 missile defense system.

Last year, Mr. Chavez signed a deal with the Kremlin to purchase $3billion worth of weapons, including helicopters, fighter planes andsmall arms.

But Mr. Chavez said weapons are not the aim of his visit.

He says his priorities are culture, ideas and cooperation in energy as well as the military.

Chavez has warm words for Russia Independent Online
Russia keeps tricky Chavez visit low key Washington Post
ForbesMonsters and Critics.comBusiness DayEuronews.net
all 109 news articles

UPDATE: And while he is in Moscow, new protests are held in Venezuela for the freedom of expression: Gateway Pundit.

Read also Free Thoughts: Chávez wants power for life.

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From Newsvine:

The head of the International Monetary Fund will step down in October for personal reasons, it was announced Thursday, about six weeks after the upheaval at the helm of its sister institution, the World Bank.

My family circumstances and responsibilities, particularly withregard to the education of my children, are the reason forrelinquishing earlier than expected my responsibilities at the Fund,”he said in a statement to the board of the 185-nation lendinginstitution.

De Rato, 58, a former Spanish economy minister, toldthe executive board of the 185-nation lending organization he wouldleave in October after the IMF’s annual meeting.

He was due to end his five-year term in May 2009. He succeeded Horst Koehler, now Germany’s president, in May 2004.

Uff, whatever the people surrounding him says, I really believe he is returning to the next Spanish election campaign. The exact date is not known though, although it could be next October or a little later, in March 2008.

He was a magnificent MP, a terror for PSOE because of his very well-organised brain and his bitter but calm answers. I really would like him again in Spain as Minister, if it’s possible. 😀 [He also made errors, the biggest one in communication policy…].

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If you are using Linux you can download the new Google Desktop for Linux.

h/t El Mundo.es.

More information here.

It does not have the sidebar though -at least not in my PC 😀 -… 😦 But for the rest it goes right.

And Apple has released a new version of its Safari for Windows, that goes better that the last one. But if you are going to write comments in Spanish, it’s better that you do nottry it yet, as if you write an accent they are going to be cut!! 😉 But, in general, it goes smooth and it does not have major problems…

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niqab vs bikini

Found here thanks to Mike.

Also check these photos comparing women’s situation in Iran before and after the Islamic revolution.

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Go over to Gateway Pundit, Dinah Lord, and Sugiero for information.

imageIranian bloggers Kamangir, Iranian Plateau (from whose blog I have taken the ohoto of the left), City Boy, Noggr and Serendip have also looked into this.

More links:

Brisbane Times

estación de servicio iraní quemadaIran’s gas rationing sets off violence

Houston Chronicle – 51 minutes ago
By NASSER KARIMI AP Writer © 2007 AP TEHRAN, Iran – Iranians smashed shop windows and set fire to a dozen gas stations in the capital Wednesday, angered by the sudden start of a fuel rationing system that threatens to further increase the unpopularity of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Police were sent to guard some stations after the violence, and there was calm during the day as motorists lined up to fill their tanks under the new restrictions.

The government had been warning for weeks that rationing was coming, but the announcement of its start just three hours before the plan took effect at midnight Tuesday startled people and sent them rushing to get one last fill-up.image

The rationing is part of a government attempt to reduce the $10 billion it spends each year to import fuel that is then sold to Iranian drivers at less than cost, to keep prices low.

Iran is one of the world’s biggest oil producers, but it doesn’t have enough refineries, so it must import more than 50 percent of the gasoline its people use. The government says money saved from subsidies can go to building refineries, improving public transit and creating jobs.

But a hike in gas prices last month and now the rationing are feeding discontent with Ahmadinejad, who was elected in 2005 on a platform of helping the poor and fixing Iran’s ailing economy. His failure to do so has sparked widespread criticism.

This man, Ahmadinejad, has damaged all things. The timing of the rationing is just one case,” said Reza Khorrami, a 27-year-old teacher who was among those lined up at one Tehran gas station late Tuesday.image

Petrol stations torched in Iran after Ahmadinejad rations fuel Times Online
Iran fuel rations spark anger, pump stations burn Reuters AlertNet
Spiegel Online – Los Angeles Times – Telegraph.co.uk – Guardian Unlimited
all 369 news articles »

This ain’t Hell, but you can see it from here writes about the nuclear problem.

Also take a look at A second Hand Conjecture, specially about the unrest against the Mullahs.

Other news from Iran:

  1. Take a look at “Couple tortured for being gay” and “Interview with Fakhravar“, one of the most prominent Iranian dissidents, from City Boy Blog.
  2. Ahmadinejad’s political consultant is his butcher. Doesn’t surprise me really…smile_omg
  3. Iran: End child executions” and “Iranian troops cross into Southern Iraq and attack British troops“. Also “Iran wages war on “inmoral” cell phone messages.
  4. Also read Iran cracks down on dissent by NYT. h/t Free and Secular Iran.

The country’s police chief boasted that 150,000 people — a number far larger than usual — were detained in the annual spring sweep against any clothing considered not Islamic. More than 30 women’s rights advocates were arrested in one day in March, according to Human Rights Watch, five of whom have since been sentenced to prison terms of up to four years. They were charged with endangering national security for organizing an Internet campaign to collect more than a million signatures supporting the removal of all laws that discriminate against women.

Eight student leaders at Tehran’s Amir Kabir University, the site of one of the few public protests against Mr. Ahmadinejad, disappeared into Evin Prison starting in early May. Student newspapers had published articles suggesting that no humans were infallible, including the Prophet Muhammad and Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The National Security Council sent a stern three-page warning to all the country’s newspaper editors detailing banned topics, including the rise in gasoline prices or other economic woes like possible new international sanctions, negotiations with the United States over the future of Iraq, civil society movements and the Iranian-American arrests.

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UDPATE: Experts consider that both Syria and Iran can be the responsibles of the attack. [Scroll down]

«This is not fair!»

PM José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero approached the Crown Prince Felipe and wife Letizia to take his leave when in between the relatives of the soldiers a voice came up totally full of pain: the voice belonged to the mother of one of the parachuiters. «This is not fair. Give more security to these kids!», she stormed against the President. The security services tried to prevent her from approaching to Zapatero, but in the end it was him who wanted to pay attention to her. [about time too….]. 

With a mixture of ire, pain, frustration and impotence, her firm voice was broken as she was also crying, what did not prevent her from continuing with her speech. «There is no valor to protect the vehicles of these lads. They were people who had their full lives to live!», she shouted to Zapatero before asking him to fight for «Spanish youths» and shout «¡Viva Esperanza Aguirre!» (President of the Autonomous Community of Madrid, from Popular Party, won the last elections with a huge absolute majority and has been the only one who really has helped the relatives). The President bear the way he could the uncomfortable situation with the help of VP María Teresa Fernández de la Vega, while Defense Minister Alonso just did not pay attention to the incident.

But this was not the only critic to Zapatero. Ramón Luján, Yeison Alejandro Castaño’ uncle, one of the dead, complained about the “lack of tact” of the Government. «They should have been nearer the relatives». While he could barely speak, Luján remembers that if his nephew died it was, precisely, “because of the sentiment he had, so high, for the Spanish Army“. Castaño has also a cousin, Soldier Pino, also deployed in Lebanon, that yesterday, minutes before the funeral, spoke about his firm decision to end his mission for him and for the dead companions. You do not know never where death is, he has told his mother.

La Razón | Digital : España

More shame:

The Government had some initiatives since March in Congress to inform about the troops deployed in Lebanon. Pending to answer, there were two petitions in which it was asked the presence of the Defense Minister, one of them based on article 18 of the Law of National Defense (passed by Socialists under Zapatero), which obliges the Government to inform about the development of the operations abroad in periods no longer than 6 months (last time was in March 2006) and 9 questions to be answered orally in Commisions. There are also 42 written questions about the troops’ situation which were resolved in an inconcrete and fleeing-like way, according to PP.

Ex-Defense Minister Bono -the one who awarded himself a medal for fleeing from Iraq- mentioned the accident of the Yakovlev (42 soldiers dead) which was an ACCIDENT, while this has been an AMBUSH inside a WAR. smile_baringteeth

More here.

The wounded don’t know yet their companions are dead. Even if do not think it’s good to publish the photos of ailing people, in this case it is necessary for all to see, how they are now. The 2nd grade burns have gravely damaged their eyes. They can be more wounded because of Zapatero’s decision not to have aid helicopters deployed as in that case the number of Spanish troops in foreign mission could be well above the 3.000 that was the top number to which he compromised when his term began.

heridos en líbano (2)heridos en líbano (2)

And the worst of all: Now Defense says that the low risk of terrorist attacks did not justify the use of inhibitors. Of course not, that is why every damned politician in Spain, where we are not in a state of war, uses expensive inhibitors in their cars, while soldiers in plein war camp, do not merit even the cheap ones.

smile_baringteeth 

Some articles in the Spanish blog.

By the way, Lebanon has awarded Spanish soldiers with THREE WAR MEDALS. Spanish Government has awarded them with the medal “Dead on Humanitarian Work“.[NOTE: I do not have the link, I have heard it on the radio this morning. When I have the link I will post it]. smile_baringteeth More indignity…

 Thanks, Spanish soldiers. That’s all I can say right now.

You can read also the reflections of my friend Mike over at Lamplighter News. He explains some very interesting things about UNIFIL mission and about the C4 explosive. Worth reading.

Also read Freedom’s Zone: The real war is only beginning.

More commenting at Spanish blog Etimologías. Don’t worry most of the post is in English. But Syria appears to be THE culprit, as Blacksmith Jade commented here.

Zapatero will speak today in Congress, about the security of the mission in Lebanon. Wait and see what he has to say…

Spanish MSM are reporting that instead of helping the dead and the wounded, Italian soldiers made photos, while Lebanese Army helped them. h/t Anghara. Don’t know if that’s true, but if that’s the case, smile_sad.

UPDATE: Are Syria and Iran the real responsible of the attacks?

Syria:

The first consideration that can link Fatah al Islam to Syrian Government is that the Lebanese PM, Fuad Siniora said “I have confessions of some of the people who surrendered with links to the Syrian Security Services. It is probable it was ordered by Damascus“. Syrian intelligence has denied any links with the group and has blamed CIA and Mossad just as usual. Crossed accusations that do not lead to Al-Qaeda.

Fatah al-Islam was born in the end of 2006 when it parted from Fatah al-Intifada (Fatah del levantamiento), a Palestinian group backed with Syria and Lebanese based. It’s believed that Fatah al-Islam has between 150 and 200 armed men, all of them based in refugee camp of Nahr al-Bared, in Tripoli, North Lebanon. Lebanese refugee camps are normally used as refugee by armed groups. Government’s security forces do not enter and only guard their perimeter.

Fatah al-Islam’s leader is Shakir al-Abssi, a re-known Palestinian militant. Abssi has denied any link with al-Qaeda.

But he has important links with Syria. Suspicions lie on the fact that he was sentenced in 2003 to 3 years in prison after being accused of planning attacks against the country. That is a very small punishment, considering that Syrian accused of belonging to Muslim Brotherhood normally receive punishments of 12 years. When he was freed, he appeared between the pro-Syrian groups of the Fatah-Intifada in Nahr al-Bared refugee camp, and in very short time he emerged as the leader of the new Fatah al-Islam. That is one of the reasons why general Ashraf Rifi, the leader of the Lebanese Security Force concludes that all the violence is a Syrian creation to create chaos.

Also international antiterrorist experts consider that Fatah al Islam has nothing to do with Al Qaeda neither in financial terms nor in logistical ones. But they do not deny the possibility of Fatah al-Islam being supported and financed by Syria.

The thirdreason is the great easiness with which the group moves within the Hizbullah territory. We have to underline the very narrow relatiosnhips of Hibullah with Damascus and Teheran. The place where the Spanish patrol suffered the attack is one the most important places of Hizbullah presence in Lebanon. The investigators do not understand this kind of easiness throughout Hizbullah’s territory without belonging to Syrian security services. And their explanation is plausible: Supposedly Fatah al Islam is integrated by Sunni Jihadists who hate the Shiites, and do not make any exceptions with Hizbullag, a Damascus’ ally. “If Fatah al Islam is not related with Syrian Government, Hizbullah will forbid its jihadists from being in their territories”, they say.

In this moment, the investigation maintains there are two great suspects: Fatah al Islam and pro-Iranian groups. What these investigators do know is that “the authors had the permission of Hizbullah to move throughout their territories what implies that both Iran and Syria should be aware of the operation. And consider also that C4 is an explosive used by Pro-Syrian groups and Hizbullah

And the reason for Iran anymosity -considering that Zapatero has promoted the “Alliance of Civilizations“- is: that the Iranian leadership did not like that the Spanish FM Moratinos rejected the Ahmadinerjacket’s thesis about “wiping Israel off the map” AND:

Seyyed Davud Salehi, Iranian Ambassador in Madrid, has critisized the lack of support of Spain to “help the coalition Government in Palestine and to lift the embargo imposed on Palestinians“.

In a recent interview to the Iranian Agency Irna, he advised (…hmmm, menaced) the Spanish Government to take care of a new virus which could influence negatively the good bilateral  relations. The investigators are considering the possibility that that virus is the terrorist attack against Spanish troops near Syrian frontier, using that supposed diplomatic confrontment as the excuse to launch the attack.

So, where is now the Alliance of Civilizations, Zapatero? What are you waiting for asking some questions to Iranian and Syrian representants in Madrid? And what are you going to do if they are behind the attack?

smile_baringteeth

So it has already begun… if this is proved…

Posted before:

  1. Lebanon blast kills 6 UN (Spanish) peacekeepers.
  2. Blast kills 6 UN (Spanish) peacekeepers (II).
  3. Blast kills 6 UN Spanish peacekeepers in Lebanon (III).

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Tony Blair has today stepped out of office and has been named envoy to Middle East, something that not all people agree with.

Dahlan: Iran, Qatar supported Hamas during Gaza ‘coup’

Jerusalem Post – 1 hour ago
By KHALED ABU TOAMEH

“I was not surprised by the coup in the Gaza Strip,” Dahlan said. “I knew about Hamas’s plans and I told different parties about this so we could try to thwart them.”

Asked why the Fatah-controlled security forces were defeated by Hamas, Dahlan said: “The Palestinian security establishment was never prepared for internal fighting. Since the beginning of the intifada in 2000 our security forces faced systematic destruction by Israel. The Israelis destroyed 280 security installations in the past seven years and Hamas continued to destroy security installations before they launched their coup.”

Dahlan pointed out that Hamas militiamen had raided the central prison in Gaza City and freed some murderers. “They claim that they have just liberated the Gaza Strip for the second time [after Israeli disengagement],” he said. “The Hamas men have Fatah blood on their hands. They forgot that Fatah had protected them when they were being chased by Israel.”

Dahlan denied that he had played any role in the Hamas-Fatah clashes that preceded the takeover, saying he had been abroad for nearly two months for surgery. “I was not in charge of security in the Gaza Strip,” he explained. “I was out of the country because I had to undergo surgery. This is not a personal matter because Hamas has been targeting our people and institutions over the past three years.”

Dahlan lashed out at Qatar and Iran, accusing each country of giving Hamas $400 million. He also accused Qatar of turning its Al-Jazeera TV network into an organ for the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas.

For decades, Iran never paid the Palestinians one dollar,” he said. “But they gave Hamas $400 million that went to Hamas’s bank accounts and not to the Palestinian people. Qatar also gave Hamas another $400 million that were used to slaughter Palestinians.”

Israeli Gaza Attacks Kill 10 Palestinians CBS News
Israeli Attacks Kill 13 in Gaza New York Times
Houston Chronicle – Washington Post – International Herald Tribune – Ha’aretz
all 1,930 news articles »

Anyway, there are signs that Fatah never fought Hamas:

No mainstream news source has reported the clear truth about the Fatah-Hamas ‘war’–there wasn’t any. Fatah never fought. Whether the cause was conspiracy or not, two facts are certain: 1) The enormous resources provided to Fatah to fight Hamas in Gaza were essentially unused and are now in the hands of Hamas to attack Israel. 2) Enormous resources are now being provided to Fatah to fight Hamas in the West Bank.

And then we have the possible knowledge and support by both Iran and Syria of the attack against the UN Spanish peacekeepers

So what’s really happening here? smile_whatchutalkingabout

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