Tag Archives: United Nations

Saudi king urges UN action against religious insults

Saudi king urges UN action against religious insults

AFP – Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz on Saturday demanded a UN resolution condemning insults on monotheistic religions after a low-budget film produced in the US sparked deadly protests last month.

“I demand a UN resolution that condemns any country or group that insults religions and prophets,” he said during a meeting at his palace with religious figures and heads of hajj delegations in the Mina valley where pilgrims were performing final rituals of hajj.

“It is our duty and that of every Muslim to protect Islam and defend the prophets.”

A low-budget film produced in the US, Innocence of Muslims, triggered a wave of deadly anti-American violence last month across the Muslim world targeting US symbols ranging from embassies and schools to fast food chains.

Saudi Arabia had threatened to block YouTube in the kingdom if Google did not respond to a request to deny access to the video footage of the film. YouTube then extended its restrictions on the video to Saudi Arabia.

The king also called on Saturday for the “unity of the Islamic nation (and) rejecting division to face the nation’s enemies” as he urged for dialogue among Muslims.

“Dialogue strengthens moderation and ends reasons of conflict and extremism,” he said.

“The interconfessional dialogue centre which we had announced in Mecca does not necessarily mean reaching agreements on the matters of belief, but it aims at reaching solutions to divisions and implementing co-existance among sects,” he added.

The Saudi monarch proposed in August setting up a centre for dialogue between Muslim confessions in RiyadhSOURCE.

Israel: Everything ” On the Table” in War Against Iran

Israel may target Iran civilian infrastructure as part of military strike, report says

By Haaretz

Israel intends to electronic warfare on Iranian civilian infrastructures in the event of a strike against the Islamic Republic’s nuclear facilities, The Daily Beast reported on Thursday, amid ongoing fallout from a damning report by the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog.

Last week, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) released a report stating that Iran was working to gain nuclear weapons’ capabilities, a claim that has been made by both Israel and the United States for several years.

The report prompted Israel to urge the international community to act at once to thwart Iran’s nuclear ambitions using harsher sanctions, with some estimating that the report gave Israel the backing it needed to undertake a military strike of Tehran’s nuclear facilities.

On Thursday, however, The Daily Beast quoted U.S. security officials as claiming that a possible Israeli strike would go as far as targeting Iran’s civilian infrastructure, including the country’s internet and cellphone networks, as well as its electrical grid.

The Daily Beast, quoting what it said “current and former U.S. intelligence officials,” claimed that Israel has developed weapons that could imitate a maintenance cellphone signal that commands a cell network to go inactive, “effectively stopping transmissions.”

In 2007, a suspected Syrian nuclear site was destroyed in what many estimate was an attack by Israel Air Force warplanes. A report in Aviation Week & Space Technology not long after the alleged attack claimed that Israeli forces had knocked out Syria’s entire radar system as a prelude to the attack.

According to the report, the Syrian radar site was hit with a combination of electronic attack and precision bombs to allow the IAF to enter and exit Syrian airspace unobserved.

Subsequently all of Syria’s air-defense radar system went off the air for a period of time that encompassed the raid, U.S. intelligence analysts told Aviation Week.

SOURCE

Republicans Advance Bill Targeting US Funding for UN: ‘What Are We Paying For?’

Republicans Advance Bill Targeting US Funding for UN: ‘What Are We Paying For?’

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By Patrick Goodenough

(CNSNews.com) – A U.S. House committee Thursday approved a bill linking U.S. contributions to the United Nations to significant financial and other reforms, one day after Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned she would recommend that President Obama veto the measure if it reaches his desk.

Deeply divided along party lines, the House Foreign Relations Committee voted 23-15 for the U.N. Transparency, Accountability, and Reform Act (H.R. 2829), whose most radical provision aims to force the U.N. to change its funding mechanism from the current system of “assessed” contributions to voluntary ones.

Proponents say this would allow the U.S. – and other member states – to fund only those activities and agencies it regards as being efficiently managed, and in the national interest.

In order to compel the U.N. to make the shift, the legislation would withhold 50 percent of the U.S. assessed contributions to the regular budget (which does not include peacekeeping) if the U.N. has not moved at least 80 percent of the budget to voluntary funding within two years.

American taxpayers account for 22 percent of the U.N.’s regular operating budget and 27 percent of the separate peacekeeping budget in “assessed” dues. In addition the U.S. provides billions of dollars in voluntary contributions for various U.N. agencies. In FY 2010 the total U.S. contribution was $7.69 billion.

Conservatives critical of the U.N. have long advocated the U.S. using its leverage, as the biggest funder by far, to push the world body to reform – and to weaken efforts by hostile member-states to use the U.N. to harm American interests.

The bill’s author, committee chairwoman Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), told Thursday’s markup hearing that the U.N. budget continues to climb.

“What are we paying for?”
she asked, then cited repressive regimes’ membership on the Human Rights Council, a continuing anti-Israel bias, the elevation of member states like North Korea and Iran to leadership positions in various bodies, and corruption scandals.

“Why do we bear the financial burden for this?” Ros-Lehtinen continued. “Every year, scores of member countries that contribute almost nothing to the U.N. vote together to pass the budget. Then they pass the costs on to big donors like the U.S., which is assessed a whopping 22 percent.


“In contrast, China pays just three percent. We need a game-changer.”

The committee’s top Democrat, Rep. Howard Berman, said the “real agenda” behind the bill was to end U.S. participation in the U.N. and to “deal a fatal financial blow to the world body.”

He argued that there was no evidence to support the notion that withholding dues can leverage meaningful change.

“Previous attempts at withholding did not lead to any significant and lasting reforms – they only succeeded in weakening our diplomatic standing and influence, and undermining efforts to promote transparency, fiscal responsibility and good management practices in the U.N. system,”
Berman told the committee.

‘A dangerous retreat’

If the bill does pass in the House – where it has 125 co-sponsors, all Republican – its passage through the Democrat-controlled Senate would be an uphill battle. Even if it did make it through the Senate, its chances of making it into law are slim.

In a letter to Ros-Lehtinen on Wednesday, Clinton expressed strong opposition to the measure, saying if it reached the president, she would recommend a veto.

Citing U.N. missions in Iraq and Afghanistan as examples, she argued that international engagement through the U.N. comes at a fraction of the cost of acting alone.

“This bill also represents a dangerous retreat from the longstanding, bipartisan focus of the United States on constructive engagement within the United Nations to galvanize collective action to tackle urgent security problems,
” she wrote.

“If we act to diminish our global stature, the United States would surrender a key platform from which to shape international priorities, such as obtaining tough sanctions on Iran.”

During the hearing, Ros-Lehtinen referred to Clinton’s letter, and in particular the suggestion that the legislation could harm U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan because other countries would not share the burden by paying for U.N. missions in those countries.

Does the administration have such little faith in our allies and in our diplomacy – which they pride themselves on – to think that they would not share the burden of fighting Islamist extremists unless the U.N. forced them to?” she asked.

On the eve the markup hearing, the U.N. Foundation released results of a poll in which 64 percent of respondents said they supported the U.S. “paying our dues to the U.N. on time and in full” while 31 percent said they opposed this.

The poll also found 55 percent of respondents were not in favor of legislation that would cut U.S. funding of the U.N., while 39 percent favored it.

The wording of the question on the proposed legislation said that it “cuts fifty percent of the United States’ funding to the United Nations,” “ends United States’ funding to UNICEF and the World Health Organization” and “ends United States’ funding of United Nations’ agencies that respond and take action after a natural disaster or humanitarian crisis.”

The poll wording did not say that 50 percent of U.S. funding would only be cut if the U.N. failed to shift from an assessed to voluntary payment mechanism. Neither did the wording make clear that funding to agencies like UNICEF would only end if those agencies fail to provide the U.S. Comptroller General with a certificate of transparency, or to comply with that certification.

The U.N. Foundation was set up in 1998 with a $1 billion donation to U.N. causes by CNN founder and philanthropist Ted Turner. Its priorities include building public support for the U.N. and advocating U.S. funding for the U.N.

“At a time when the United Nations is more relevant than ever in addressing the world’s greatest peace and security challenges, this survey is evidence that voters believe in the value of the United Nations to American interests,” U.N. Foundation president Timothy Wirth said in a statement on the poll.

SOURCE

NATO in final preparations for new war

NATO preps for new war
Syrian chief warns attack will set Middle East aflame

TEL AVIV – NATO troops are training in Turkey for a Turkish-led NATO invasion of Syria, a senior Syrian diplomatic official claimed to WND.

Separately, informed Middle East security officials said Russia has been inspecting Syrian forces and has been advising Syria about possible Syrian military responses should NATO attack the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

The officials said Russia recently sold Syria a large quantity of Iskander ballistic missiles, and that, in light of the NATO threat, the Russian government renewed its pledge to sell Syria the advanced S-300 anti-missile system.

The Syrian diplomatic official, meanwhile, recognized his country receives general support from Russia, but told WND that Assad’s regime is concerned the European Union and U.S. may offer Russia an economic incentive to scale back Russian support for Syria.

The report comes as Assad reportedly warned yesterday he will set the Middle East on fire if NATO forces attack his country.

“If a crazy measure is taken against Damascus, I will need not more than six hours to transfer hundreds of rockets and missiles to the Golan Heights to fire them at Tel Aviv,” Assad reportedly said, according to Iran’s state-run Fars news agency.

Assad made the comments in a meeting with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmad Davutoglu, reported Fars.

Fars reported Davutoglu conveyed a warning from NATO and the U.S. that Syria could face an international military campaign if Assad does not halt his violent crackdown on an insurgency targeting the Syrian president’s regime.

Assad also reiterated that Damascus will call on Hezbollah in Lebanon to launch an intensive rocket and missile attack on Israel, reported Fars.

“All these events will happen in three hours, but in the second three hours, Iran will attack the U.S. warships in the Persian Gulf and the U.S. and European interests will be targeted simultaneously,”
Assad was quoted as saying.

While Assad’s remarks could not be immediately verified, Iran, which runs Fars, is a close partner to the Damascus government.

WND first reported in August that Assad is taking military measures to prepare for a possible U.S.-NATO campaign against his regime.

Informed Egyptian security officials told WND Assad instructed the Syrian military to be prepared for an air or ground campaign if the international community determines his pledges of reform are not enough.

Also in August, WND first reported Turkey secretly passed a message to Damascus that if it does not implement major democratic reforms, NATO may attack Assad’s regime, according to Egyptian security officials.

The Egyptian security officials said the message was coordinated with NATO members, specifically with the U.S. and European Union.

The Egyptian officials said Turkish leaders, speaking for NATO, told Assad that he has until March to implement democratization that would allow free elections as well as major constitutional reforms.

Last month, Obama officially asked Assad to step down to pave the way for a democratic system in Syria.

According to informed Middle Eastern security officials speaking to WND, Assad asked his military to make specific preparations in the event of a U.S.-led NATO campaign similar to the military coalition now targeting Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

George Soros-funded doctrine with White House ties

The Libya bombings have been widely regarded as a test of a military doctrine called “Responsibility to Protect.”

In his address to the nation in April explaining the NATO campaign in Libya, Obama cited the doctrine as the main justification for U.S. and international airstrikes against Libya.

Responsibility to Protect, or Responsibility to Act, as cited by Obama, is a set of principles, now backed by the United Nations, based on the idea that sovereignty is not a privilege but a responsibility that can be revoked if a country is accused of “war crimes,” “genocide,” “crimes against humanity” or “ethnic cleansing.”

The term “war crimes” has at times been indiscriminately used by various United Nations-backed international bodies, including the International Criminal Court, or ICC, which applied it to Israeli anti-terror operations in the Gaza Strip. There has been fear the ICC could be used to prosecute U.S. troops who commit alleged “war crimes” overseas.

The Global Centre for Responsibility to Protect is the world’s leading champion of the military doctrine.

As WND reported, billionaire activist George Soros is a primary funder and key proponent of the Global Centre for Responsibility to Protect. Several of the doctrine’s main founders also sit on boards with Soros.

WND reported the committee that devised the Responsibility to Protect doctrine included Arab League Secretary General Amre Moussa as well as Palestinian legislator Hanan Ashrawi, a staunch denier of the Holocaust who long served as the deputy of late Palestinian Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat.

Also, the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy has a seat on the advisory board of the 2001 commission that originally founded Responsibility to Protect. The commission is called the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty. It invented the term “responsibility to protect” while defining its guidelines.

The Carr Center is a research center concerned with human rights located at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Samantha Power, the National Security Council special adviser to Obama on human rights, was Carr’s founding executive director and headed the institute at the time it advised in the founding of Responsibility to Protect.

With Power’s center on the advisory board, the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty first defined the Responsibility to Protect doctrine.

Power reportedly heavily influenced Obama in consultations leading to the decision to bomb Libya.

Two of the global group’s advisory board members, Ramesh Thakur and Gareth Evans, are the original founders of the doctrine, with the duo even coining the term “responsibility to protect.”

As WND reported, Soros’ Open Society Institute is a primary funder and key proponent of the Global Centre for Responsibility to Protect. Also, Thakur and Evans sit on multiple boards with Soros.

Soros’ Open Society is one of only three nongovernmental funders of the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect. Government sponsors include Australia, Belgium, Canada, the Netherlands, Norway, Rwanda and the U.K.

Board members of the group include former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, former Ireland President Mary Robinson and South African activist Desmond Tutu. Robinson and Tutu have recently made solidarity visits to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip as members of a group called The Elders, which includes former President Jimmy Carter.

Annan once famously stated, “State sovereignty, in its most basic sense, is being redefined – not least by the forces of globalization and international co-operation. States are … instruments at the service of their peoples and not vice versa.”

Soros: Right to ‘penetrate nation-states’

Soros himself outlined the fundamentals of Responsibility to Protect in a 2004 Foreign Policy magazine article titled “The People’s Sovereignty: How a New Twist on an Old Idea Can Protect the World’s Most Vulnerable Populations.”

In the article Soros said, “True sovereignty belongs to the people, who in turn delegate it to their governments.”

“If governments abuse the authority entrusted to them and citizens have no opportunity to correct such abuses, outside interference is justified,” Soros wrote. “By specifying that sovereignty is based on the people, the international community can penetrate nation-states’ borders to protect the rights of citizens.

“In particular,” he continued, “the principle of the people’s sovereignty can help solve two modern challenges: the obstacles to delivering aid effectively to sovereign states, and the obstacles to global collective action dealing with states experiencing internal conflict.”

More George Soros ties

“Responsibility” founders Evans and Thakur served as co-chairmen with Vartan Gregorian, president of Carnegie Corp. Charitable Foundation, on the advisory board of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty, which invented the term “responsibility to protect.”

In his capacity as co-chairman, Evans also played a pivotal role in initiating the fundamental shift from sovereignty as a right to “sovereignty as responsibility.”

Evans presented Responsibility to Protect at the July 23, 2009, United Nations General Assembly, which was convened to consider the principle.

Thakur is a fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation, which is in partnership with an economic institute founded by Soros.

Soros is on the executive board of the International Crisis Group, a “crisis management organization” for which Evans serves as president-emeritus.

WND previously reported how the group has been petitioning for the U.S. to normalize ties with the Muslim Brotherhood, the main opposition in Egypt, where longtime U.S. ally Hosni Mubarak was recently toppled.

Aside from Evans and Soros, the group includes on its board Egyptian opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei, as well as other personalities who champion dialogue with Hamas, a violent offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood.

WND also reported the crisis group has petitioned for the Algerian government to cease “excessive” military activities against al-Qaida-linked groups and to allow organizations seeking to create an Islamic state to participate in the Algerian government.

Soros’ own Open Society Institute has funded opposition groups across the Middle East and North Africa, including organizations involved in the current chaos.

‘One World Order’

WND reported that doctrine founder Thakur recently advocated for a “global rebalancing” and “international redistribution” to create a “New World Order.

In a piece last March in the Ottawa Citizen newspaper, “Toward a new world order,” Thakur wrote, “Westerners must change lifestyles and support international redistribution.”

He was referring to a United Nations-brokered international climate treaty in which he argued, “Developing countries must reorient growth in cleaner and greener directions.”

In the opinion piece, Thakur then discussed recent military engagements and how the financial crisis has impacted the U.S.

“The West’s bullying approach to developing nations won’t work anymore – global power is shifting to Asia,” he wrote.

“A much-needed global moral rebalancing is in train,” he added.

Thakur continued: “Westerners have lost their previous capacity to set standards and rules of behavior for the world. Unless they recognize this reality, there is little prospect of making significant progress in deadlocked international negotiations.”

Thakur contended “the demonstration of the limits to U.S. and NATO power in Iraq and Afghanistan has left many less fearful of ‘superior’ Western power.”

Read more: NATO preps for new war SOURCE

Wind Farms: Monuments to Lunacy

Wind farms: the monuments to lunacy that will be left to blot the landscape


By Christopher Booker

Three separate news items on the same day last week reflected three different aspects of what is fast becoming a full-scale disaster bearing down on Britain. The first item was a picture in The Daily Telegraph showing two little children forlornly holding a banner reading “E.On Hands Off Winwick”.

This concerned a battle to prevent a tiny Northamptonshire village from being dwarfed by seven 410-foot wind turbines, each higher than Salisbury Cathedral, to be built nearby by a giant German-owned electricity firm. The 40 residents, it was reported, have raised £50,0000 from their savings to pay lawyers to argue their case when their village’s fate is decided at an inquiry by a Government inspector.

In the nine years since I began writing here about wind turbines, I have been approached by more than 100 such local campaigns in every part of Britain, trying to fight the rich and powerful companies that have been queuing up to cash in on the vast subsidy bonanza available to developers of wind farms. Having been the chairman of one such group myself, I know just how time-consuming and costly such battles can be. The campaigners are up against a system horribly rigged against them, because all too often – although they may win every battle locally (in our case we won unanimous support from our local council) – in the end an inspector may come down from London to rule that the wind farm must go ahead because it is “government policy”.

I long ago decided that there was little point reporting on most of these individual campaigns, because the only way this battle was going to be won was by exposing the futility of the national policy they were up against. My main aim had to be to bring home to people just how grotesquely inefficient and costly wind turbines are as a way to make electricity – without even fulfilling their declared purpose of reducing CO2 emissions.

Alas, despite all the practical evidence to show why wind power is one of the greatest follies of our age, those who rule our lives, from our own politicians and officials here in Britain to those above them in Brussels, seem quite impervious to the facts.

Hence the two other items reported last week, one being the Government’s proposed changes to our planning rules (already being implemented, even though the “consultation” has scarcely begun) which are drawing fire from all directions. The particular point here, on page 43 of the Government’s document, is a proposal that local planning authorities must “apply a presumption in favour” of “renewable and low-carbon energy sources”.

What this means in plain English is that we can forget any last vestiges of local democracy. Our planning system is to be rigged even more shamelessly than before, to allow pretty well every application to cover our countryside with wind turbines – along with thousands of monster pylons, themselves up to 400 feet high, marching across Scotland, Wales, Suffolk, Somerset and elsewhere to connect them to the grid.

All this is deemed necessary to meet our EU-agreed target to generate nearly a third of our electricity from “renewables” – six times more than we do now – by 2020. This would require building at least 10,000 more turbines, in addition to the 3,500 we already have – which last year supplied only 2.7 per cent of our electricity.

Obviously this is impossible, but our Government will nevertheless do all it can to meet its unreachable target and force through the building of thousands of turbines, capable of producing a derisory amount of electricity at a cost estimated, on its own figures, at £140 billion (equating to £5,600 for every household in the land).

Which brings us to the third of last week’s news items, a prediction by energy consultants Ulyx that a further avalanche of “green” measures will alone raise Britain’s already soaring energy bills in the same nine years by a further 58 per cent.

A significant part of this crippling increase, helping to drive more than half Britain’s households into “fuel poverty”, will be the costs involved in covering thousands of square miles of our countryside and seas with wind turbines. The sole beneficiaries will be the energy companies, which are allowed to charge us double or treble the normal cost of our electricity, through the subsidies hidden in our energy bills; and landowners such as Sir Reginald Sheffield, the Prime Minister’s father-in-law, who on his own admission stands to earn nearly £1,000 a day at the expense of the rest of us, for allowing a wind farm to be built on his Lincolnshire estate.

Even more damaging, however, will be the way this massive investment diverts resources away from the replacement of the coal-fired and nuclear power stations which are due for closure in coming years, threatening to leave a shortfall in our national electricity supply of nearly 40 per cent. If we are to keep our lights on and our economy running, we need – as the CBI warned in a damning report on Friday – urgently to spend some £200 billion on power supply,

But our politicians have been so carried away into their greenie never-never land that they seem to have lost any sight of this disaster bearing down on us. Instead of putting up turbines on the fields of Northants, E.On should be building the grown-up power stations we desperately need. But government energy policy has so skewed the financial incentives of the system that the real money is to made from building useless wind farms.

Sooner or later, this weird policy will be recognised as such a catastrophic blunder that it, and the colossal subsidies that made it possible, will be abandoned. That will leave vast areas of our once green and pleasant land littered with useless piles of steel and concrete, which it will be no one’s responsibility to cart away.

If the Government really wishes to make a useful change to our planning laws, it should insist that every planning permission to build wind turbines should include a requirement that, after their 25-year life, they must be removed at their owners’ expense. Alas, by that time the companies will all have gone bankrupt, and we shall be left with a hideous legacy as a monument to one of the greatest lunacies of our time.

A way has been found to save our village cricketers

There has been another twist to the year-long battle for survival of our little Somerset village cricket club which, as I wrote last Sunday, has been threatened with closure by a bizarre bureaucratic double whammy.

On the one hand, our local council wanted us to pay rates amounting to more than £100 for every home game we play, more than we can realistically afford. On the other, Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs has ruled that we cannot get any relief on this crippling demand because our constitution did not state explicitly that membership of the club is open to anyone “regardless of sex, age, disability, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion or other beliefs” (it merely stated that membership was “open to anyone”).

On Monday, in a friendly and helpful letter from Mendip district council, it emerged that a way may have been found round this difficulty. If our cricket club is redesignated as a business, we might qualify this year for Small Business Rate Relief, at 100 per cent.

For the moment, it seems, that the threat has been lifted, and that next season we may again be permitted to take the field on Sunday afternoons without having to pay a tax of over £700 a year – thanks to a scheme designed to promote growth in the local economy.

SOURCE

UN to launch new anti-drug programs in Afghanistan, Central Asia

26/4/2011 1:04

The United Nations plans to launch several programs aimed at fighting drug trafficking in Afghanistan and neighboring states by the end of 2011, the executive director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said on Monday.

“Central Asian states, including Kyrgyzstan, remain a large trafficking hub for Afghan drugs,” Yury Fedotov told journalists during a visit to the he

adquarters of the newly established State Drug Control Service in the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek.

“We are planning to launch new regional anti-drug programs in Afghanistan and neighboring countries by the end of the year,” he said.

Kurmanbek Bakiyev, who was ousted as Kyrgyzstan’s president during a popular uprising in April 2010, dissolved the country’s Drug Control Agency in October 2009, handing over its functions to the interior and health ministries.

The new Kyrgyz authorities made a decision to restore the anti-drug watchdog after Bakiyev’s ouster. The United Nations is planning to spend more than $3 million to support the agency, Fedotov said.

Afghan drug production increased dramatically after the U.S.-led invasion toppled the Taliban in 2001, and Russia has been one of the most affected countries, with heroin consumption rising steeply.

About 90 percent of heroin consumed in Russia is smuggled from Afghanistan via former Soviet republics, including Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Around 30,000 Russians die from heroin abuse every year.

Russia has criticized the U.S.-led international coalition in Afghanistan for not doing enough to curb drug trafficking, particularly for refusing to destroy opium poppy fields. Opium production is a major source of income for Afghanistan’s impoverished rural population, as well as for Taliban militants.

BISHKEK, April 25 (RIA Novosti)

http://en.rian.ru/world/20110425/163688905.html

Interesting article. Unfortunatelbring int he drugs.

www.strategicstudiesinstitute.army.mil/pdffiles/pub804.pdf

www.strategicstudiesinstitute.army.mil/pdffiles/of-interest-17.pdf

www.strategicstudiesinstitute.army.mil/pdffiles/pub818.pdf

www.sais-jhu.edu/academics/regional-studies/…/KAUFMANFinal.pdf

United Nations Urged To Ban Mercury In Vaccines

United Nations Urged To Ban Mercury In Vaccines

April 11, 2011

Silver Spring, MD /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ – CoMeD – While the United Nations (UN) actively questions the use of vaccines containing a neurotoxic mercury compound, the Coalition for Mercury-Free Drugs (CoMeD), a Maryland-based, non-profit organization, is urging the UN to ban it.

In mid-March, governments were asked to send the UN secretariat “information on mercury use in pharmaceuticals, especially vaccines.” The request was made in preparation for the United Nations Environmental Programme’s third intergovernmental negotiating committee (INC3) on mercury, scheduled for this fall. The purpose of the INC meetings is to develop a legally-binding, global mercury treaty by 2013.

CoMeD was pleased by this call for information because CoMeD provided scientific data about health hazards caused by mercury in vaccines to various international delegates at the second INC meeting in January in Chiba, Japan.

Since then, CoMeD has publicized new studies proving that the mercury in vaccines and dental amalgams, or “silver” fillings, is associated with neurological diseases such as autism in children and Alzheimer’s disease in adults.

One study from the University of Brazil recognizes vaccines as essential but suggests that the use of Thimerosal, a mercury-based compound sometimes used as a vaccine preservative, be reconsidered. Recent articles in Folia Neuropathologica, Middle East Current Psychiatry, the Journal of Immunotoxicology, the Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology, and the Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology confirm the toxicity of the dose of mercury in Thimerosal-preserved vaccines.

In humans, Thimerosal is recognized to cause cancer, genetic mutations and birth defects. In 1999, the U.S. Public Health Service and American Academy of Pediatrics jointly called for its removal from U.S. vaccines “as soon as possible.” Thimerosal has since been replaced by the much less toxic compounds, like 2-phenoxyethanol (2-PE), in preserved vaccines licensed for U.S. use by the FDA since 2001. Though most doses contain Thimerosal, flu shots are now strongly recommended for pregnant women and children.

A CoMeD analysis has shown that replacing Thimerosal, a compound that is 50% bioaccumulative mercury by weight, with 2-phenoxyphenol in all vaccines, including the flu shot, is both economical and safer. Additionally, CoMeD has sued the FDA for its failure to comply with the law and enforce preservative safety regulations.

Furthermore, vaccine-safety proponents are encouraging those who are responsible for international vaccination campaigns to heed the overwhelming evidence that human health risks are linked to mercury and other vaccine ingredients.

Rev. Lisa K. Sykes, President of CoMeD, is warning groups including the Global Alliance for Vaccines, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to stop spreading mercury to other continents: “While Thimerosal has been removed from most vaccines in the United States, pharmaceutical companies and the World Health Organization continue to dump mercury-laced vaccines on developing countries. No ethic can justify providing prosperous nations with mercury-free vaccines while endangering children in poor nations by exposing them to this neurotoxin.”

SOURCE Coalition for Mercury-Free Drugs (CoMeD)

Copyright [2011] PR Newswire. All Rights Reserved.

http://www.bioresearchonline.com/article.mvc/United-Nations-Urged-To-Ban-Mercury-In-0001

Learn the 3 E’s – AGENDA 21

Agenda21

Agenda 21 is a comprehensive plan of action to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organizations of the United Nations System, Governments, and Major Groups in every area in which human impacts on the environment.

Agenda 21, the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, and the Statement of principles for the Sustainable Management of Forests were adopted by more than 178 Governments at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) held in Rio de Janerio, Brazil, 3 to 14 June 1992.

The Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) was created in December 1992 to ensure effective follow-up of UNCED, to monitor and report on implementation of the agreements at the local, national, regional and international levels. It was agreed that a five year review of Earth Summit progress would be made in 1997 by the United Nations General Assembly meeting in special session.

The full implementation of Agenda 21, the Programme for Further Implementation of Agenda 21 and the Commitments to the Rio principles, were strongly reaffirmed at the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) held in Johannesburg, South Africa from 26 August to 4 September 2002.

http://www.un.org/esa/dsd/agenda21/

Sustainable Agriculture – Agenda 21 and the “New” Globalization Process

By Don Casey
Tuesday, 15 December 2009 09:05

We read glowing reports and articles about “Sustainable Agriculture.” It is difficult to create an awareness of the potential harm because the verbiage and slogans used sound so benevolent. The reality is that foodshed regulations will give environmental groups and government agencies control over all means of production of the food consumed by the American people. Through increased taxation and regulation, American citizens will be stripped of their wealth and property and all resources will be redistributed as government sees fit.
As Tony the Tiger says, “Sustainable Agriculture” sure sounds “GRRREAT!“ We read glowing reports and articles about “Sustainable Agriculture.” It is difficult to create an awareness of the potential harm because the verbiage and slogans used sound so benevolent, “buy local.” Add that to the fact that we are concerned about our food supply due to global control by mega agri-business and the issue comes into better focus. (At the end of this article are links to the tri-fold brochure that helps explain sustainable agriculture’s ultimate goal and an online video that supplements this article.)

The new agricultural system has these changes and more:

1. Each community will grow its own food on individual and/or community-owned farms that form a boundary around the community.
2. All farming will be sustainable and eco-friendly. Organic farming will be certified and monitored by a farm stakeholder committee. This will ensure that food labelled “Organic” is authentic.
3. Constant measurements will be taken to guarantee that the sustainability and eco-friendly BMPs (best management practices) parameters are maintained.
4. Organic farming will be productive without the use of pesticides or unnatural fertilizers.
5. Industrial farming will no longer be allowed to damage the earth.
6. Importing foreign food products will be reduced in order to increase local production and help the local economy.

This sure sounds good—but is it really a win-win situation? Let’s take a close look at the points raised. After all, there are usually more than one side to an issue. The first point actually raises several issues:

1. Each community will grow its own food on individual and/or community-owned farms that form a boundary around the community.

We need definitions to understand what this says.

“Each community” of course refers to a “sustainable community.” Washington State University School of Architecture has a definitive description of “sustainable community.”

“A sustainable community is one which provides all of its own needs for air, water, land (or food and fiber), and energy resources within the confines of its own site.” 1

Obviously, creating and maintaining a “sustainable community” has implications that stretch beyond a system of “sustainable agriculture.”

Here is the University’s graphic—it is quite intuitive:

Sustainable Agriculture – A Relatively New Globalization Process

The circle around the community is generally referred to as an “Urban Growth Boundary”1a (UGB) or a “Utility Service Area.”

Here is an easy to understand definition from the State of Minnesota:

“A UGB is an established line beyond which urban services such as public sewer and water and transportation improvements will not occur.”

It sounds wonderful until you stop to think about what this will do to property values outside of the UGB. Who would buy property where power, road maintenance, and modern conveniences are not permitted? That’s right—nobody!

The free market system is replaced by an official policy that promotes a system of sustainable communities/agriculture. The new system will create a shortage of desirable real estate. As you know, a shortage, created naturally or by government edict, will destroy the average income earner’s ability to own a parcel of land.

“Community owned farms” are also referenced here. The USDA provides an interesting definition. In bureaucratic speak—government double talk—a “community owned farm” is CSA—”Community Supported Agriculture.”

In basic terms, CSA consists of a community of individuals who pledge support to a farm operation so that the farmland becomes:

* Legally or spiritually the community’s farm,
* Growers and consumers provide mutual support and share the risks and benefits of food production.2

What this means exactly will be determined by the bureaucrat who wrote it. I venture to say that “spiritual ownership” of a private farm is a concept that best fits a plot on Twilight Zone.

Another point to consider is the concept that farms will form a boundary around the community. This is often referred as the “foodshed”3 or “foodcircle.”4 The concept is confirmed in the graphic from the Washington State University program. Oh—I forgot to mention that they named their process “A Comprehensive Urban Regenerative Process.” Remember that EVERYTHING consumed in the community is produced in the community. So the concept of a “foodshed” or “foodcircle” fits right in. Local governments across the country are adopting this concept.

The bull’s eye from Clackamas County, Oregon5 is a fair indicator of its general acceptance. The urban center is surrounded by the Metropolitan Foodshed. Food produced in the “foodshed” is intended to be consumed in the “urban center.”

The outer ring is the Foundation Lands Woodshed. This is where “Value-Added Forestry”6 products will be produced. Do you see the point? A “value-added tax” system is being introduced. For instance; the price for agricultural products grown or produced outside the “foodshed” does not include the full cost of the “food mile.”

What are “food mile” costs? I don’t know all of the cost associated with the “food mile” concept, but see the “food mile” poster: (Footnote7 provides a link to the information relating to it.)

Sustainable Agriculture – A Relatively New Globalization Process

Some, but not all of the external costs are: transportation, soil degradation, irrigation-related groundwater depletion, and pesticide and fertilizer misuse.8

These costs will ultimately be calculated by a “governance” system. Note that “governance” is not government, it is: “the framework of rules, institutions, and practices that set limits on the behaviour of individuals, organizations and companies.”9

The “institutions” that set the rules will be a collection of “stakeholders.” Stakeholders are those who are recognized as having a degree of responsibility for determining the cost of a “food mile” and local government entities. The true cost, after factoring in ecological damage to the earth, will include “social justice.”10

What is “social justice?” Here is a quick rundown. It involves:

* progressive taxation,
* income redistribution,
* property redistribution,
* equality of opportunity, and
* equality of outcome.

More broadly speaking social justice can be defined as the system of justice predicated on the central dispensation of “rights” to various groups at various times. These rights are granted in accordance with the policies and procedures thought necessary to advance the central authorities latest iteration of “common good.” This is in contrast to the uniquely American notion of equal rights.

Equal rights require the establishment of a judicial system that protects individual rights. Equal rights support true diversity — a respect for the independence and unalienable rights of the individual and genuine tolerance for individuality. Equal justice puts a checkmate on mob rule.

In summary:

Foodshed Regulations will give these environmental groups and government agencies control over all means of production of the food consumed by the American people. This combines a Marxist system of justice with a fascist system of economics. It is control of all means of production through abolition of private property. In the name of “Social Justice” all food production, distribution, and consumption will be controlled by government. Through increased taxation and regulation, American citizens will be stripped of their wealth and property and all resources will be redistributed as government sees fit.

When this happened in Russia under Stalin, eleven million people who were seen as resisting socialism were intentionally starved to death. (Look up ‘Kulaks’ on Google.)

Food, or lack thereof, can be the ultimate weapon and the ultimate control.

Thus far we have only responded to the first item defining “sustainable agriculture.” It has consumed the space currently available and involves a number of rabbit trails we have had to go down.

We don’t want to overburden you with this initial effort, so we will take the advice of a nine year old nephew. He asked his mother a simple question about the birds and bees and she referred him to his father. Dad, being a proper father, informed his son about things as completely as he could. Sometime later, Mom asked the boy if his Dad answered his question. The boy responded, “He sure did! I think I got a lot more than I really wanted to know.”

Here’s the link to a tri-fold brochure you can print and share with friends and others who need to know and care:
http://www.freedomadvocates.org/images/pdf/acr_sustainable_farming_brochure.pdf

I have uploaded a video presentation titled: The Art of Transitioning Society at: http://www.vimeo.com/7602634. In the presentation I include a segment that explains “sustainable agriculture” in greater detail than the tri-fold brochure. The remaining subject matter of the presentation focuses on “local globalization,” which has been dubbed “glocalization.”

I uploaded the following text with the video. It is a descriptive intro in an effort to entice individuals with varying interest to watch the video:

* “Are you aware that “food citizenship” is on the horizon?
* Are you aware that your behavior will very likely positively or negatively affect your “food citizenship?”
* Are you a “locavore?”
* If not, why haven’t you made the commitment?
* Are you paying the full cost associated with your “food miles?”
* Will your “foodshed” be sufficient to put a “sustainable and nutritionally adequate diet” on your table?
* Are you pro-permaculture?”

These are but a few of the pressing questions regarding society’s new paradigm. Social change is happening—don’t be caught off guard—your place in the new modern society depends on it.

If you would like a copy of the DVD The Art of Transitioning Society, please send me your mailing address plus $3.00 for material and mailing. My mailing address is: 1129 1st Avenue, Pleasant Grove, Alabama 35127.

Thanks,
Don Casey

Footnotes

1. http://www.arch.wsu.edu/09publications/sustain/modlsust.htm
1a. http://www.mnplan.state.mn.us/pdf/2000/eqb/ModelOrdWhole.pdf
2. http://www.nal.usda.gov/afsic/pubs/terms/srb9902terms.shtml
3. ibid
4. ibid
5. http://web12.clackamas.us/alfresco/download/direct/workspace/SpacesStore/fa8597da-c264-11dd-a620-5fa507d8ef06/20080624.pdf
6. http://www.conservationdistrict.org/sheds/
7. http://www.hawthornevalleyfarm.org/fep/foodmiles.html
8. http://www.worldchanging.com/archives/009093.html
9. United Nations “Human Development Report” – 1999
10. European Foundation Centre

Sustainable Agriculture — A Relatively New Globalization Process by Don Casey

This article was submitted by Don Casey. He is with ALLIANCE FOR CITIZENS RIGHTS, Ken Freeman, Chairman 256-498-3802; Don Casey, Vice-Chairman 205-542-1730. On the web at: www.keepourrights.org and www.alabamapropertyrights.org

Don’t count them out yet! UN looks to reshape world agenda

By George Russell

| FoxNews.com

After a year of humiliating setbacks, United Nations Secretary General Ban ki-Moon and about 60 of his top lieutenants — the top brass of the entire U.N. system — spent their Labor Day weekend at a remote Austrian Alpine retreat, discussing ways to put their sprawling organization in charge of the world’s agenda.

Details concerning the two-day, closed-door sessions in the comfortable village of Alpbach were closely guarded. Nonetheless, position papers for the meeting obtained by Fox News indicate that the topics included:

— how to restore “climate change” as a top global priority after the fiasco of last year’s Copenhagen summit;

— how to continue to try to make global redistribution of wealth the real basis of that climate agenda, and widen the discussion further to encompass the idea of “global public goods”;

— how to keep growing U.N. peacekeeping efforts into missions involved in the police, courts, legal systems and other aspects of strife-torn countries;

— how to capitalize on the global tide of migrants from poor nations to rich ones, to encompass a new “international migration governance framework”;

— how to make “clever” use of new technologies to deepen direct ties with what the U.N. calls “civil society,” meaning novel ways to bypass its member nation states and deal directly with constituencies that support U.N. agendas.

As one underlying theme of the sessions, the top U.N. bosses seemed to be grappling often with how to cope with the pesky issue of national sovereignty, which — according to the position papers, anyway — continued to thwart many of their most ambitious schemes, especially when it comes to many different kinds of “global governance.”

Not coincidentally, the conclave of bureaucrats also saw in “global governance” a greater role for themselves.

As a position paper intended for their first group session put it, in the customary glutinous prose of the organization’s internal documents: “the U.N. should be able to take the lead in setting the global agenda, engage effectively with other multinational and regional organizations as well as civil society and non-state stakeholders, and transform itself into a tool to help implement the globally agreed objectives.”

And for that to happen, the paper continues, “it will be necessary to deeply reflect on the substance of sovereignty, and accept that changes in our perceptions are a good indication of the direction we are going.”

Hammering away at perceptions that nation-states cannot adequately meet global challenges, but the U.N. can, is a major theme of the position papers, which were assembled by a variety of U.N. think tanks, task forces and institutions, including the United Nations Development Program, and the U.N.’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs.

CLICK HERE FOR THE POSITION PAPERS

National sovereignty — meaning the refusal of major powers like India, China and the United States to go along with sweeping global agendas — was specifically indicted for the failure of the much ballyhooed Copenhagen summit on climate change. “National sovereignty remains supreme,” as one position paper noted.

Nonetheless, the U.N. leaders intend to keep trying to change that, especially when it comes to the climate agenda. “The next 40 years will prove pivotal,” one paper argues, while laying out the basis of a renewed U.N. climate campaign, the “50-50-50 Challenge.”

That refers to a projection that by 2050, the world’s population will reach an estimated 9 billion (50 percent higher than today), at the same time that the U.N.-sponsored Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change — producer of the scandal-tainted 2007 Global Assessment of global warming — is calling for a 50 percent reduction in world green house gas emissions.

According to the paper prepared by Secretary General Ban’s own climate change team, however, the newly rebranded challenge still depends on the same economic remedy proposed for Copenhagen: a drastic redistribution of global wealth, “nothing less than a fundamental transformation of the global economy.”

Rolling just about every U.N. mantra into one, the paper declares that “nothing is more crucial to preventing run-away climate change than lifting billions out of poverty, protecting our planet and fostering long-term peace and prosperity for all.”

And to do that, the paper suggests, equally dramatic shifts in political power may be needed. “Is the global governance structure, still dominated by national sovereignty, capable of responding with the coherence and speed needed?” it asks. “Or do we need to push the ‘reset’ button and rethink global governance to meet the 50-50-50 Challenge?”

Yet even as the U.N. bosses talk of delivering billions from poverty, their main aim, the papers argue should be much, much larger: to limit and redirect the aspirations for a better life of rising middle classes around the world.

As the opening session paper puts it: “The real challenge comes from the exponential growth of the global consumerist society driven by ever higher aspirations of the upper and middle layers in rich countries as well as the expanding demand of emerging middle-class in developing countries. Our true ambition should be therefore creating incentives for the profound transformation of attitudes and consumption styles.”

The answer to that “real challenge,” as well as many others addressed in the position papers, is that the U.N. and its proliferating array of funds, programs, institutes, and initiatives, should push themselves forward as the great synthesizer of solutions to global problems: “connecting the dots,” as the climate change paper puts it, across a “range of issues,” including “climate, water, food, energy, and health.”

“At the practical level, through the U.N. system we have all kinds of expertise and capacities, even if not adequate resources, to actually do something,” the paper notes.

How to get more of those resources is another major theme of many of the papers. As one of the documents focusing on food security notes, “development assistance funding is less readily available and the donors are ever more focused on demonstrable results.” One suggestion: tap global philanthropies, as well as link together “a broad range of public sector, business and civil society partners.”

The U.N. bosses also need to make sure that the institution sits at top tables where the world’s financial decisions are made. It is “urgent to secure U.N. participation” at regular meetings of the G-20 finance ministers and their deputies,” according to one of the papers, a group that the U.N. Secretariat, based in New York City and Geneva, does not interact with very much.

That observation ties into another Alpbach theme: pushing global financial regulation even further.

“The much paraded reform of financial governance institutions has not gone far enough,” the position paper for the U.N. leadership’s keynote session asserts, and the voting power of emerging players and developing world, in general, which demand a greater say on these matters, remains inadequate.”

The answer? “An enhanced political will is clearly needed to avoid return to status quo, to push forward regulatory mechanisms, and improve financial governance.”

Along with planting a new flag in the field of international financial regulation, the U.N. chiefs also contemplated the further growth of the U.N. as the world’s policeman. As another paper notes, U.N. peacekeeping operations “will soon have almost 17,000 United Nations police officers serving on four continents” — little more than two years after establishing what one papers calls the institutions “Standing Police Capacity.”

The peacekeepers are now also building a “standing justice and corrections element” to go with the semi-permanent police force — a permanent strike force to establish courts and prisons in nations where peacekeepers are stationed.

In essence, as another paper observes, the U.N. peacekeeping effort is transforming into a new kind of supervisory organism in which not only conflicts but also national institutions and cultures must be regulated for longer and longer periods of time.

“Even where a semblance of stability is achieved,” the paper by Ban’s peace-building support office argues, the achievement of peace may involve more than “adopting a constitution or holding elections.” It adds that “more fundamental change may be needed in a country’s institutions and political culture as well as in public perceptions and attitudes.”

(At the same time, as another paper makes clear, “some” U.N. peacekeepers come from countries “where the armed forces and police are seriously implicated in human rights violations,” including sexual crimes. While such actions “cannot be tolerated,” the paper makes clear the U.N. has no clear answers on how to police its own behavior.)

The answer to many if not most of the problems outlined in the U.N. papers is, as the opening session paper puts it: “multilateralism is instrumental to the success of our response to global challenges.”

But not any old multilateralism. The other major theme of the position papers is that the world organization, a haphazard array of at least 37 major funds, programs, and institutions, and a proliferating number of regulatory and other authorities, should be knitting itself into a much more close-knit global system, with greater control over its own finances, along with a stronger role in setting the international agenda.

How successful Ban and his chieftains will be at pushing that agenda may soon be seen, as the secretary general hosts the lead-off event of the fall diplomatic season, a two-day summit starting September 20 on the so-called Millennium Development Goals.

That refers to the U.N.-sponsored compact among nations to halve the number of the world’s poorest people, achieve global primary schooling, reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS and enhance the standing of women, among other goals, by 2015.

The position papers from Ban’s conclave make clear that Ban and his team are deeply concerned that momentum toward the MDGs, as they are known, is faltering, although one paper notes that “with the right policies, adequate investment and reliable international support, the MDGs remain achievable.”

In that sense, the secretive session in Alpbach was not only a planning session, but also the equivalent of a half-time locker room huddle.

What is at stake, the papers make clear, is not only the alleged betterment of the world, but the U.N.’s soaring ambitions for itself — no matter what roadblocks national sovereignty may throw in its way.

George Russell is executive editor of Fox News

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2010/09/08/years-setbacks-looks-world-leader/