Khamenei blames Rouhani for economic crisis in Iran

Peace and Freedom

Iran’s supreme leader on Monday accused President Hassan Rouhani’s government of mismanagement, after a string of angry public protests over the dire state of the economy.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s statement was an apparent attempt to deflect public anger over the plunging worth of the rial — the currency has lost about half of its value since April — and wider economic woes due to tough new US sanctions on Tehran.

“More than the sanctions, economic mismanagement is putting pressure on ordinary Iranians … I do not call it betrayal but a huge mistake in management,” Khamenei said.

The leader’s speech adds to the growing pressure on Iran’s beleaguered government. Aside from the economic concerns, footage of protests indicates a more fundamental dissatisfaction with the regime, with chants of slogans such as “death to the dictator” and demands for an end to Iran’s costly regional interventions in Lebanon, Syria and Yemen…

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Jon Stewart, NY Times, Natalie Portman and Bernie Sanders blacklisted by Heritage House for ‘crimes committed against the Jewish people’

Peace and Freedom

NY Times, Natalie Portman and Bernie Sanders also blacklisted by Heritage House for ‘crimes committed against the Jewish people’

Jon Stewart on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” Feb. 27, 2017. (Screenshot from YouTube)
Jon Stewart on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” Feb. 27, 2017. (Screenshot from YouTube)

A hostel in Jerusalem’s Old City has published a list of “haters of Israel” who have been banned “because of crimes committed against the Jewish people,” drawing derision and ridicule from those blacklisted.

The Jerusalem Heritage House describes itself as an institution that provides “warm and comfortable accommodations for Jewish travelers in the heart of the Old City for a nominal fee.” It boasts of having hosted more than 60,000 guests since 1985.

Posted on Twitter by journalist Jacob Kornbluh, the list includes figures such as US comedian Jon Stewart, politician Bernie Sanders, former Obama administration ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro, and actress Bette Midler. Also banned are members of the media including the staffs of…

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The End of the US Unipolar Moment Is Irreversible

Uprootedpalestinians's Blog

The End of the US Unipolar Moment Is Irreversible

The End of the US Unipolar Moment Is Irreversible

The past weeks have shown how part of the American establishment is weighing the pros and cons of the Trump administration’s strategies around the world. I have a strong feeling that in the coming weeks we will see the destabilizing effects of American politics, especially towards its closest allies.

A disastrous flip of events appears to be on its way, in case Trump were to lose the November midterm elections (the House and Senate elections). If this were to happen, the Trump administration would probably exploit the Russia gate conspiracy claiming that Moscow had now acted in favour of Democrats. Trump could argue that Moscow was disappointed by the lack of progress in softening US sanctions against Russia; indeed, by Trump’s measures against Russia (expulsions, sanctions, property seizures) and…

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Iraq’s Abadi faces US wrath at U-turn on Iran sanctions

Peace and Freedom

Failure by Iraq to comply fully with tough new US economic sanctions against Iran would be insane, analysts told Arab News on Tuesday.

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Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi risked incurring US wrath after contradicting himself in the space of a few hours over whether his country would comply.

An intended visit to Tehran was canceled and Abadi’s office denied that the visit had even been planned. (REUTERS)

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Amid diplomatic maneuvers, as he negotiates for a second term in office after divisive and contested elections, Abadi offended both Tehran and Washington with conflicting statements on the US sanctions, which were reimposed last week.

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First, the prime minister said that while Iraq disapproved of the new sanctions, it would reluctantly comply. “We don’t support the sanctions because they are a strategic error, but we will comply with them,” he said.

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“Our economic situation is also difficult and we…

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Turkey Shifts Closer to Russia

Peace and Freedom

Foreign ministers slam Western sanctions, as Erdogan plans boycott of U.S. electronic goods

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, right, discussed the Syrian crisis with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Moscow in April.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, right, discussed the Syrian crisis with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Moscow in April.PHOTO: SERGEI CHIRIKOV/EPA/SHUTTERSTOCK
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ISTANBUL—President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey stepped up his attacks on the U.S. on Tuesday, calling for a boycott of Apple Inc.’s iPhones and other U.S. electronic goods, while his foreign minister joined his Russian counterpart in criticizing Western sanctions.

Turkey, a longtime North Atlantic Treaty Organization ally, has been caught between the West and Russia. This week, officials in Ankara were leaning decidedly toward Moscow.

In recent weeks, Turkey and Russia have been the targets of U.S. sanctions while their currencies, the lira and the ruble, have dropped against the dollar. Mr. Erdogan’s boycott is part of a wider campaign Turkey has launched…

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Mexico: Incoming member of Mexico’s Congress kidnapped

Peace and Freedom

An incoming member of Mexico’s Congress was kidnapped at gunpoint on Tuesday (Aug 14), an official said, the latest violent episode surrounding the Jul 1 elections, the bloodiest in the country’s history.

Azucena Rodriguez Zamora, who was elected to the lower house of Congress for the eastern state of Veracruz, was driving on a highway in the neighboring state of Hidalgo when gunmen in another car opened fire on her vehicle, said a police source who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Image result for mexico, police, photos

The car flipped over, injuring two people who were traveling with Rodriguez.

The gunmen then pulled her from the car and abducted her, said the source.

It is the second such kidnapping in Hidalgo in recent days.

On Aug 6, the mayor of the town of Naupan, in Puebla state, was found dead after being abducted at gunpoint on a Hidalgo highway.

At least 152 politicians were murdered in the run-up…

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The Earliest Signing Of The NDAA In 40 Years Is A Giant Step In Rebuilding The Military

PA Pundits - International

By Frederico Bartels ~

With President Donald Trump’s signature Monday at Fort Drum, New York, the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal 2019 will be the earliest a defense authorization bill has become law since 1978.

Forty years ago, the bill was 16 pages long and was called the “Department of Defense Appropriation Authorization Act, 1978.” This year’s NDAA is close to 800 pages. The early date is even more impressive considering that the last time that the NDAA was signed into law before the beginning of the fiscal year on Oct. 1 was in 1997.

President Donald Trump talks with U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Walter “Walt” Piatt, the commanding general of the Army’s 10th Mountain Division and Fort Drum, as the president observes a demonstration with U.S. Army 10th Mountain Division troops and helicopters at Fort Drum, New York, on Aug. 13. (Photo: Carlos Barria/Reuters/Newscom)

The…

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