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"All terrorist actions are staged incidents, because acts of terror alienate the very people whose support the people blamed for the terror act need." -- Michael Rivero
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is using a tool called Babel X that can link a person's Social Security number to their social media posts and location data, according to an internal CBP document obtained by Motherboard.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is using an invasive, AI-powered monitoring tool to screen travelers, including U.S. citizens, refugees, and people seeking asylum, which can in some cases link their social media posts to their Social Security number and location data, according to an internal CBP document obtained by Motherboard.
The news provides much more detail on how CBP deploys a tool sold widely across the U.S. government. Called Babel X, the system lets a user input a piece of information about a target—their name, email address, or telephone number—and receive a bevy of data in return, according to the document. Results can include their social media posts, linked IP address, employment history, and unique advertising identifiers associated with their mobile phone. The monitoring can apply to U.S. persons, including citizens and permanent residents, as well as refugees and asylum seekers, according to the document.
“This document provides important new information, and it raises a number of questions about what specific purposes CBP is using social media monitoring for and how that monitoring is conducted in practice,” Patrick Toomey, deputy project director of the National Security Project at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), told Motherboard in an email after reviewing the document.
Former Prime Minister Boris Johnson met with a group of Republicans in Texas on Monday to urge them to continue supporting Ukraine in its war with Russia, POLITICO reported.
The Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA), a pro-Ukrainian think tank based in Washington, decided to enlist Johnson to push Republicans to support Ukraine as more and more GOP members have questioned the policy of flooding weapons into the country with no clear goal.
“I just urge you all to stick with it,” Johnson told a group of Texas Republicans in Dallas. “You are backing the right horse. Ukraine is going to win. They are going to defeat Putin.” While visiting Texas, Johnson also met with former President George W. Bush and Governor Greg Abbot.
Alina Polyakova, the chief executive of CEPA, said Johnson was enlisted because he is “very much seen as the architect of the Western policy” on Ukraine.
The US Defense Department is sending its warships through the Strait of Hormuz at an increased pace. The operations are a reaction to rising tensions with Iran.
Last month, the US seized a tanker carrying Iranian oil to China. In response, Tehran took control over two commercial ships in the Persian Gulf. Washington was irate with the retaliatory seizures, with the commander of the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet, Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, declaring on Monday that “Iran’s actions are unacceptable.”
After Iran took possession of the second ship, National Security Council spokesman John Kirby announced that the US military “will be making a series of moves to bolster our defensive posture in the [Persian] Gulf.”
However, Cmdr. Timothy Hawkins, a spokesman for the Navy’s Fifth Fleet based in Bahrain, told the New York Times that Washington will not deploy more military assets to the region. Instead, Central Command is ordering more operations with the personnel and equipment already in the region.
Israel’s defense minister said Monday that the Israeli government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu doubled airstrikes in Syria since taking power in late December 2022.
“Since I took office, the number of Israeli strikes against the Iranians in Syria have doubled,” Israeli Defense Yoav Gallant said.
While Israel frames its airstrikes in Syria as operations against Iran, and they occasionally kill Iranians, the strikes often kill or wound Syrian soldiers and civilians. This year, Israel targeted Syria’s Aleppo airport several times following an earthquake that devastated the city.
Israeli officials rarely comment on individual airstrikes in Syria, and Gallant would not offer a number on how many strikes have been launched by the Netanyahu government. He claimed the operations are weakening Iran’s capabilities in Syria.
Six African leaders are seeking to bring Kiev to the negotiating table for peace talks with Moscow, even as Russian troops remain in annexed Ukrainian oblasts, Pretoria said on Monday. The peace mission is expected to visit both countries’ capitals early next month.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa will insist that his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky, agree to enter peace talks before Russian troops leave his country. This is a necessary step for negotiations to begin, which Kiev has so far ruled out.
Zelensky’s government holds the position that Russian troops must leave all the provinces Moscow has annexed since the war began. Ukraine’s leadership has also set as a non-starter precondition that Moscow must vacate the Crimean peninsula, which Russia annexed in 2014 following a US-backed coup in Kiev.
Conversely, in order for talks to succeed, the Kremlin demands that Kiev recognize Russia’s sovereignty over these territories – including Crimea, which has hosted the Russian Navy’s Black Sea fleet for nearly 250 years. Since 2014, polling has demonstrated overwhelming support among Crimeans for rejoining the Russian Federation, which originally handed over the peninsula to Ukrainian control in the Soviet era.
In the past several days, four separate events have occurred that, each in a significant way, signal the need for concern in the US.
The Biden administration is reportedly planning to pursue a normalization deal between Israel and Saudi Arabia before the end of this year.
According to Axios, President Biden will seek to work out the deal before the election campaign “consumes” his agenda. While the prospect of a normalization deal between these countries is not as far-fetched as it once was, it remains a long-shot and there is no compelling reason for the U.S. to make this the focus of its diplomatic efforts in the region.
The president might think that a deal like this would be a feather in his cap as he seeks re-election, but it would be a serious error to make the additional commitments to Saudi Arabia that would be needed to make it possible.
Biden already made the mistake of trying to curry favor with Mohammed bin Salman last year, only to be rebuffed ahead of the midterm elections last year. He would be unwise to make a big pre-election push for a deal with the Saudis that would come at America’s expense when there is good reason to expect that the crown prince would leave him in the lurch once again. Mohammed bin Salman would probably prefer to wait until after the election so that he can extract even bigger concessions later. Even if the Saudis were willing to accept Biden’s offer this year, it would be a bad deal for the United States.
Like the casino gambling scene in “Casablanca,” the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court is “shocked, shocked” that the Federal Bureau of Investigation continues to ravage the privacy of vast numbers of Americans.
For each American the FISA court permitted the FBI to target, the bureau illicitly surveilled almost 1,000 additional Americans.
The court’s just-revealed ruling signals the FBI presumed any American suspected of supporting the Jan. 6, 2021, protests forfeited their constitutional rights.
An overwhelming majority of US voters say they are concerned about law enforcement and intelligence agencies interfering in future elections, according to a new Harvard CAPS-Harris poll.
When asked whether they were concerned “about interference by the FBI and intelligence agencies in a future presidential election,” 37 percent of respondents said they were “very concerned,” while 33 percent said they were “somewhat concerned.”
The following is the speech delivered on Monday by Stella Assange to the National Press Club in Canberra, provided in a tweet by Gabriel Shipton, Assange’s brother.
Najwa Abu Aisha, 48, is lying in a hospital bed, surrounded by family. She has been there since May 11 when Israel bombed empty farmland near her Gaza home, sending her hurtling from the second-floor rooftop of her house.
She was left paralysed by the fall.
Israeli occupation forces on Tuesday closed the water holes that provide the Palestinian village of Bardala in the northern Jordan Valley with its daily water needs, the official Palestinian news agency WAFA reported.
Human rights activist Aref Daraghmeh told WAFA that the occupation forces raided the village and closed the holes, noting that this is the tenth time that the water holes have been closed in two years.
Daraghmeh said that residents in Bardala and other communities in the Jordan Valley suffer from a lack of access to sufficient quantities of water in light of the occupation authorities’ control over most of the water resources in the Jordan Valley through the Israeli Mekorot water company.
Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Daniel Werfel denied retaliating against whistleblowers who recently contacted Congress to allege a cover-up in the Hunter Biden tax fraud investigation.
“I want to state unequivocally that I have not intervened – and will not intervene – in any way that would impact the status of any whistleblower,” Werfel said in a May 17 letter to the House Ways and Means Committee obtained by Fox News.
Werfel contends that the purge of the IRS’s Biden investigatory team on May 15 was allegedly done on the orders of the Justice Department, which aligns with what one of the whistleblower’s attorneys told congressional leaders.
Prosecutors overseeing the federal criminal investigation into former President Donald Trump’s handling of classified information have issued a subpoena to obtain information about Trump’s business dealings in seven foreign countries since he took office in 2017.
The New York Times reported that special counsel Jack Smith issued the subpoena to the Trump Organization for its records related to its “licensing and development dealings” in China, France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, and Oman.
The report noted that while the Trump Organization did not do any foreign deals while Trump was in office, the former president did make a deal with a Saudi-based real estate company for a project in Oman just before he announced his third presidential campaign last fall.
A NASA lunar orbiter has spotted the final resting place of a private Japanese moon lander that failed in its touchdown attempt last month.
The Hakuto-R lander, also carrying a small rover for the United Arab Emirates, made its landing attempt on April 25, aiming to set down in Atlas Crater. However, communications with the lander were lost moments before the expected landing. The ispace team behind the lander later confirmed that the lander did not safely touch down on the surface.
Now the site of the apparent crash has been discovered in images taken by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO).
The Israeli municipality in Jerusalem has announced plans to build 400 illegal settlement homes in the occupied town of Abu Dis, to the east of Occupied Jerusalem, The Times of Israel reported on Monday.
The plans include expanding the illegal Kidmat Zion settlement, where ten settler families currently live in three buildings purchased by the Ateret Cohanim settler organization.
The town is home to 15,000 Palestinian, the main campus of Al-Quds University and Palestine Authority government institutions.
In the building proposal submitted to the building committee, Ateret Cohanim cited “Palestinian ambitions” in Abu Dis to underscore the project’s importance.
Shots puts an amusing spin on the little-known history of eugenics. It traces the genocidal, anti-ethnic eugenics movement which resulted in the sterilization and elimination of millions. It exposes how the wealthiest families financed the evolution of eugenics into Nazi Germany, and pushed America into perpetual wars. These families further influenced the government's elimination of financial liability for vaccine manufacturers while simulating run-ups to the 2020 pandemic. By that year the wealthiest had bought and controlled the media, and censored medical experts that criticized government actions. Shots illuminates how the government censored effective therapeutics, financially incentivized hospitals to adopt misleading reporting practices and deadly treatments, doubled global deaths with lockdowns, bankrupted small businesses, and allowed the most unsafe vaccines in a century.
On Tuesday, the Texas legislature voted to pass HB 1070 and withdrew from Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC), the controversial voter roll maintenance system.
Texas will be the 9th state in the past year to leave the ERIC.
Rep. John Bucy, D-Austin proposed some changes to the bill, which would have to be approved by the Senate before the bill goes to Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk.
On Tuesday, GOP Representative Anna Paulina Luna (R-FL) has taken another bold step by filing a privileged resolution to ‘censure, condemn, and fine’ serial liar Rep. Adam Schiff for his ‘egregious abuse of trust.’
The resolution, if successful, could result in a $16 million fine imposed on the controversial Democrat from California, which is half the cost of the Russia hoax investigation.
“This will be a privileged motion to censure & a $16 million dollar fine (half the cost of the Russia hoax investigation) meaning I WILL bring this vote to the house floor,” Luna wrote.
Lock her up!
The Manhattan professor who cursed at pro-life students and put a machete to a New York Post reporter’s neck has been fired.
The New York Post reported:
The manic Manhattan college professor who threatened a Post reporter with a machete has been fired, the school said Tuesday — as it emerged she is suing the NYPD for allegedly abusing her during the 2020 George Floyd protests.
Shellyne Rodriguez was sacked by Hunter College just hours after the adjunct professor was caught on camera holding the blade to the veteran reporter’s neck while threatening to “chop” him up outside her Bronx apartment.
“Hunter College strongly condemns the unacceptable actions of Shellyne Rodriguez and has taken immediate action,” school spokesman Vince Dimiceli told The Post.