Sunday, February 17, 2019

NEWS SUMMARY-INTELLIGENCE REPORT SUNDAY- MONDAY 2/18/-2/19/2019


(A WORK IN PROGRESS WITH UPDATES AND ADDITIONS, EDITING ETC. POSSIBLE UNTIL 830 AM MONDAY MORNING)

( WARNING: OFFENSIVE LANGUAGE IN LEAD STORY)

Protests all weekend in France on the third month anniversary of the Yellow Vests.

Protesters around the Eiffel Tower, on the Champs-Elysees and at the Place of the Republic in Paris on Sunday.

On Saturday nationwide protests from the center of Paris to traffic circles in towns and at toll booths on the many highways being operated by private companies in the country.

The Yellow Vests own estimate of their numbers Saturday is 101-thousand while the government says only 41,500 protested.

Much attention from government officials and the media paid to profane insults directed at a Jewish academic on the sidelines of Saturday's protest who was called "big Zionist s***" among other things.  

Government officials including President Emmanuel Macron quickly putting blame on the Yellow Vests for the incident.

But word is that police have identified a suspect in the tirade who is connected to an Islamic movement, more specifically a "Salafist movement" within Islam.

The Polish Prime Minister cancelling his visit to Israel for a Holocaust related summit following last week's controversial comments from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about Polish collaboration with the Nazis during World War II.   The leaders of three other nations coming to Israel for bilateral talks instead of a formal summit meeting.

Netanyahu made his comments in Warsaw during the  Middle East 'peace and security' summit which was dominated by US and Israeli demands that other nations take a tougher line on Iran.

As the election campaign rolls on in Israel the man nominated to be Foreign Minister by Prime Minister Netanyahu, Yisrael Katz repeated criticism of Poles in an interview with Israel's "Channel 13":

"Poles cooperated with the Nazis"


Katz also attacking the leader of the party leading the polls among opposition forces, former IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, saying Gantz opposed attacking Iran and wanted a negotiated deal with the Iranians.

Last week when Netanyahu referenced Polish collaboration with the Nazis, a sensitive issue in Poland and Israel,  Polish leaders responded saying that it was the Poles who were victimized by the Nazis.

Netanyahu also insisted the conference in Warsaw last week was about Iran with the Polish Foreign Minister saying the meeting was about other issues in addition to Iran.

Discipline against a French military officer is being considered after he wrote an article critical of the tactics being used to defeat ISIS in Syria.

Colonel Francois-Regis Legrier, the commander of artillery assisting Kurdish forces in Syria, wrote for the "National Defense Review" among other things:

"...by refusing ground engagement, we unnecessarily prolonged the conflict and thus contributed to the increasing number of casualties  in the population.  We have massively destroyed the infrastructure and given the populations a disgusting image...."


He said that as few as 1,000 ground troops would have have defeated ISIS more effectively in the recent Battle of Hajin.

Russia's Sputnik news agency reports that the Syrian military is planning a limited military operation against the Hayat Tahrir-al Sham (HTS) jihadists, at one time Al-Qaeda in Syria.    The jihadists in Idlib province have repeatedly violated a demilitarized zone set up in the region under Russian and Turkish supervision.

The Russian report quotes Syrian military sources.

Former New York Congressman Anthony Weiner is out of federal prison after serving 15 months of a 21 month sentence.   Weiner pled guilty to sending sexually explicit messages to a 15-year old girl asking her to undress on camera.

He is now in a halfway house in Brooklyn heading for a May 14th release.

Weiner was married to a close aide of Hillary Clinton,  Huma Abedin, with Clinton related emails  found on his laptop during the law enforcement investigation.

A barrage of tweets from President Trump over the weekend many related to Robert Mueller's investigation and the assertions of former Deputy FBI Director and Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, interviewed on CBS's "60 Minutes" Sunday night.

US Senator Lindsey Graham calling for Senate hearings into Mr. McCabe's assertion that there was an attempt to find grounds to remove the President from office immediately after the firing of FBI Director James Comey in 2017.

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert withdrew her name from consideration to be the next US Ambassador to the UN.  Nauert says she was grateful for the trust President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo placed in her but it was in the best interests of her family that she pull out of consideration for the job.

The State Department says that the President will announce a new nominee soon.

Police in Chicago want to talk to actor-singer Jussie Smollett about the alleged "racist and homophobic" attack on him that left him wearing a noose and alleging people using President Trump's "Make America Great Again" slogan were his attackers.

Last week the police detained for questioning and released two Nigerian men who were close to Smollett around the time of the attack with sources leaking to the media those men allege being paid by Smollett to stage the incident. 

Humanitarian aid is arriving in Colombia carried by US military aircraft.

Its bound for delivery in Venezuela whose Interim President Juan Guaido has called on volunteers to prepare to carry the food across the border next Saturday (February 23rd).  On Saturday Guaido tweeted that there will be volunteers inside and outside the country distributing the aid.

Speaking to the media in Colombia the director of the US Agency for International Development, Mark Green, said:

"Children are going hungry, and nearly every hospital in Venezuela is experiencing serious medicine shortages"



Nicolas Maduro and his government say the relief aid is part of a US plot to invade Venezuela.

Mr. Guaido is also laying plans for relief goods to be distributed through Brazil and the Dutch island territory of Curacao in the Carribean Sea.

In Barcelona, Spain Saturday 200-thousand protesters in the streets supporting Catalan leaders being tried for sedition.

12 people on trial for their involvement in a referendum that voted to make Catalonia independent from Spain.    The Spanish government declared the referendum void and assumed direct control in its aftermath.

If convicted, some of the defendants could be jailed for 25 years.


Seven MP's from the Labor Party in the UK announced their departure Monday over the policies of leader Jeremy Corbyn saying they wanted him to support a new Brexit referendum and saying the party has failed to deal with Anti-Semitism in its ranks.

The "second referendum" notion for Brexit an idea pushed by former Labor Prime Minister Tony Blair.   The seven forming a new political grouping arguing for a "new politics".

Pakistan rolled out the red carpet for a visit from the de-facto ruler of Saudi Arabia.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin-Salman representing a nation with financial power and Pakistan reported to have financial difficulties as characterized by the BBC.

20 billion dollars in deals announced between the two countries Monday.

Bin-Salman also set to visit China and India.

Meanwhile India imposing 200 percent tariffs on Pakistani goods as it ends most favored trading status following last weeks suicide bomb attack that killed 46 Indian soldiers in Kashmir.

India holds Pakistan responsible.

On Monday four Indian soldiers and two terrorists killed in a military operation in Kashmir with a civilian also reported dead.

A British House of Commons committee report accuses Facebook of spreading false news from foreign powers, attacks its founder Mark Zuckerberg for failure of leadership or responsibility.

The report urges far more stricter regulation of Facebook and Facebook's response was that it was open to "meaningful regulation".

And who did it for what purpose is unclear but the Russian flag was flying over Salisbury Cathedral in England this weekend for a brief time.   The flag hung from scaffolding on the cathedral in the town where an attack alleged to have been perpetrated by the Russian government occurred last year involving the agent "Novichok" with one person killed and three sickened.


The Russian News Agency Tass quotes a diplomat at the Russian Embassy in London saying:

"we believe it looks like a well thought out provocation"


And a man who was a pollster for former President Jimmy Carter, a Democrat, and moved on in more recent times to be supportive of Donald Trump is dead.

Pat Caddell passed away Saturday in Charleston, South Carolina from complications of a stroke at the age of 68.

And that's the way it really is as we come into this Monday morning January 18th, 2019.

FRANCE YELLOW VESTS BREAKING:  THREE MONTH ANNIVERSARY PROTESTS IN PARIS



The Champ de Mars in the area of the Eiffel Tower was filled with Yellow Vests this afternoon on the three month anniversary of the protests that began November 17th.

They moved on to other locations like the Champs-Elysees and the Place of the Republic where protesters were already gathered for static demonstrations that began early in the afternoon.

The police say that 1500 were protesting this afternoon in Paris.

Also today a Yellow Vests protest was underway in the south of France at La Ciotat on the coast just east of Marseille.

This extra day of protest followed yesterday's nationwide demonstrations in urban areas, at traffic circles and toll booths in towns and the countryside.   The Yellow Vests say 101-thousand participated while the official government estimate is 41,500.

(ITS BEEN REVEALED THAT A JOURNALIST FOR BFM-TV WAS BEATEN SEVERAL TIMES BY POLICE IN PARIS YESTERDAY.   RAPHAEL MAILLOCHON WAS IN BETWEEN POLICE AND PROTESTERS AND WANTED TO MOVE AWAY BUT POLICE REFUSED EVEN AFTER HE IDENTIFIED HIMSELF.

MAILLOCHON IS FILING A COMPLAINT ABOUT THE INCIDENT. BFM-TV SAYS IT DEPLORES THE INCIDENT)

A prominent personality in the Yellow Vests protests, Ingrid Levavasseur, was confronted by angry protesters denouncing her today.  Levavassur, who is from Normandy, withdrew from involvement in a Citizens Referendum Initiative political movement contesting the European elections recently but came to the Paris protest.

In the end riot police helped to extract her from those who confronted her.



Links below.......

LIVE-MULTIPLEX VIDEO OF FEBRUARY 17TH YELLOW VESTS 1245-445 PM PARIS TIME





Saturday, February 16, 2019

FRANCE YELLOW VESTS:  NATIONWIDE PROTESTS CONTINUE, 101-THOUSAND PROTESTERS ESTIMATED, GOVERNMENT DENOUNCES THUGS, ANTI-SEMITISM


The first day of a weekend of protests by the Yellow Vests today in France with 5000 on the streets of Paris according to the authorities.   Tear gas used against some on the Champs-Elysees late in the afternoon.

More will rally and march in Paris tomorrow with four events listed to mark the three month anniversary of the Yellow Vests protests.

The Yellow Vests decided to estimate their total number protesting today amid controversy over official government estimates.  They estimate some 101,379 protesting today,

The government says 41,500 protested.

Thousands on the streets in Bordeaux with police making a handful of arrests alleging objects thrown at them.   Media estimating some 4 to 5 thousand with the government refusing to offer any estimate.

"We are not tired"


one message from the protesters who also carried banners about police violence against protesters.


The A7 motorway blocked at the south exit in Lyon for two hours late in the afternoon.

A thousand protesters reported in Lyon in the city center.

Many "roundabout" (traffic circle) protests with toll booth Yellow Vests allowing motorists through without having to pay toll on the many highways turned over to private companies by the government for operation.

2000 protested in Marseille marching to the north side of the city with 12 protesters who will continue on to Paris meeting other protesters along the way.

They are promoting the Citizens Referendum Initiative.

Some 2000 demonstrating in Brittany at Pontivy with the police forcing protesters out of the town center.

Coffins to represent democracy were placed in front a war memorial and government office.

On February 5th the National Assembly passed a new law to restrict protests, a law pushed by President Macron and his party "La Republic En Marche".

It would give local authorities the right to exclude specific people from protesting and allow judges to ban protests entirely.

This last week in the European Parliament a symbolic vote condemning laws that restrict protest with several countries in mind but France drawing the most attention in the debate.   485 members of the 751 member Parliament voting for that resolution.

Today the office of  a member of the National Assembly from President Macron's party, Sarthe Damien Pichereau, was ransacked in Le Mans.

It is reported that people wearing yellow vests were the perps on a day the office is closed.

There were denunciations of the incident and the "thugs" involved in the ranscking.

Three protesters injured in Rouen in northwestern France when stuck by a motorist caught up in the protest.  Police say protesters threw objects and mounted the car.

And there have been accusations of Anti-Semitism from the Yellow Vests and today an incident reported widely and heavily in the media and denounced by President Macron among many others tonight.

Protesters in Paris alleged to have hurled insults and whistled at Alain Finkielkraut, a Jewish philosopher and teacher.    Video was put on social media of individuals saying "Zionist s***" and "France it is ours".

This incident is another example of the propaganda war as the government, the establishment work to suppress and discredit protesters whose standard of living has been reduced by the policies of Emmanuel Macron, policies that are said to be "Green" and promoting economic growth.

They care about the suffering done to them and are not interested in hating anyone although crazies and or people planted by the government may be.

Banning and suppressing protests using a new law could very well be one aspect of a broader policy to discredit and destroy the Yellow Vests protesters.

Links below......

MUTLIPLEX VIDEO 545-945 PM TONIGHT IN PARIS

RT VIDEO OF PROTESTS IN PARIS TODAY 2/16/2019


(EDITED, EXPANDED SATURDAY AFTERNOON, EVENING)

NEWS SUMMARY-INTELLIGENCE REPORT SATURDAY 2/16/2019  NEWSDUMP EDITION


(UPDATES, ADDITIONS, EDITING ETC. POSSIBLE UNTIL 815 AM EASTERN US TIME)


This weekend marks the three month anniversary of the Yellow Vests  protests in France and nationwide protests are planned today with a special protest in Paris tomorrow.

The Yellow Vests protests began in response to the tax-economic policies of French President Emmanuel Macron which sharply raised gasoline taxes in the name of combating climate change.

Highways given to private companies to operate and charge tolls created additional high costs especially for rural areas of France.

The Yellow Vests story is on the Breaking News post.....HERE

"California will see you in court" is the response from Democrat Governor Gavin Newsom to President Trump's emergency declaration to erect a barrier on the US-Mexico border.

Trump expected as much when he signed the declaration Friday.  He figures the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals will rule against him but he hopes to win on the final appeal to the US Supreme Court.

Former Republican Massachusetts governor William Weld wants to challenge President Trump in 2020.   Weld forming an exploratory committee for a candidacy that would oppose the President for the GOP nomination.

Weld said the Republican Party needs to assume again "the mantle of being the party of Lincoln".

He said the President has brought a "culture of divisiveness" to Washington.

Five are dead in a workplace shooting incident in Aurora. Illinois.    Five police officers wounded,  The perpetrator shot dead by the police.

He has just been fired from his job.

General Joseph Votel, commander of US Central Command, which includes forces in Syria, says the US should not withdrawal its troops from Syria as ordered by President Trump.

He believes more needs to be done to defeat ISIS and that he would not have recommended the withdrawal to President Trump.

Votel made his comments to CNN.

The President said at the Rose Garden of the White House Friday that by today important announcements will be made in regards to Syria.

The Lebanese al-Manar TV channel reported Friday that US forces pulled out of key base in northeastern Syria in recent days.

A summit between the leaders of Iran, Russia and Turkey on the future of Syria with agreement that the territorial integrity of Syria must be respected.

After the Thursday meeting in Sochi, Russia Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Turkey and Russia have agreed to clear Idlib province in northern Syria of jihadist groups.   He said "No" when asked if that meant a military operation.

A sudden middle of the night meeting led to a delay in Nigeria's presidential and parliamentary elections scheduled for today. 

The Independent National Electoral Commission says the delay till next Saturday is needed to ensure a free and fair vote.

Both of the countries major political parties, the All Progressives Congress and  People's Democratic Party, came out following the announcement accusing the other of trying to manipulate the vote.

There have been incidents in recent weeks of election offices being burned with thousands of card readers and voter cards being destroyed.

A sudden election call Friday from Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez.  Voters will go to the polls on April 28th.

Socialist Sanchez called the election after he was unable to get parliament to pass his budget.    His party only has 84 seats in the 350 seat parliament.

Trade talks between the US and China will resume in the United States next week after this week's talks in China.

No agreement yet with the US warning that very difficult issues remain to be resolved.

The US will impose higher tariffs on Chinese goods if an agreement is not reached by March 1st.

Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller is recommending 19 to 24 years in prison for President Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort.

Manafort was found to be breaking an agreement to cooperate with Mueller investigation.   Manafort has been found guilty of wrongdoing in connection with lobbying work he did for the government of Ukraine.

The Special Prosecutor also calling for a 50-thousand to 24 million dollar fine against Manafort.

Colin Kaepernick, the former NFL quarterback who kneeled for the national anthem, has reached a legal settlement with NFL owners.   Kaepernick accused the owners of collusion against him after his protest on the field over violence by police against black people.

Carolina Panthers safety Eric Reid has also settled a collusion complaint with the NFL.

A joint statement by lawyers on both sides Friday says the terms of the settlement are confidential.

Portland, Oregon Mayor Ted Wheeler out with a statement Friday evening responding to left-wing  accusations of collusion between the police and "right-wing extremists".  It's all about a Portland police lieutenant's text messaging with Patriot Prayer Group leader Joey Gibson.

Patriot Prayer protesting frequently in Portland with leftists including Antifa confronting them.

Wheeler's statement in part reads:

"First and foremost: Chief (Danielle) Outlaw and I are going to implement training for the Portland Police Bureau around how to identify white supremacy based on the recommendation of the Oregon Justice Resource Center, Council on American-Islamic Relations Oregon and the Western States Center..."

Wheeler also said there will be an independent investigation into any bias from the Portland Police in favor of groups on the Right.

Two brothers from Nigeria who worked with actor-singer Jussie Smollett, were held for questioning in an attack on Smollett.

Smollett alleges he was attacked by two white men who alluded to President Trump's signature slogan "Make America Great Again".    He says they left a noose around his neck.

The two Nigerian men were taken into custody when they arrived in Chicago Wednesday night.  The brothers work as extras on the "Empire" series and worked out at the gym with Smollett.

LATE WORD FRIDAY NIGHT AFTER 10 PM CHICAGO TIME IS THAT THE TWO MEN HAVE BEEN RELEASED BECAUSE OF 'NEW EVIDENCE'.  POLICE SAY THEY HAVE MORE INVESTIGATIVE WORK TO DO

Sources said to be within the Chicago Police have told the media they believe the alleged attack was a hoax but that was contradicted by top Chicago Police officials in recent days.

The attack on Smollett is being described as "racist and homophobic".

(BREAKING NEWS:  The Vatican announced Saturday that Cardinal and Washington Archbishop Theodore McCarrick has been defrocked.     Pope Francis has made the move following sexual abuse allegations recognizing the decision of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in the matter to return McCarrick "to the secular state".)

The Vatican's representative in France being investigated for sexual assault.

Archbishop Luigi Ventura, the apostolic nuncio, is accused by a Paris City Hall employee of repeatedly touching his buttocks using more force on later occasions with the third and final incident being witnessed by other City Hall employees.

And that's the way it really is on this Saturday morning February 16th, 2019.

Friday, February 15, 2019

BREAKING NEWS:  WEEK 14 OF YELLOW VESTS PROTEST IN FRANCE, THREE MONTH ANNIVERSARY THIS WEEKEND


(LATEST NEWS AT THE BOTTOM OF POST, STARTED LATE FRIDAY NIGHT INTO EARLY SATURDAY MORNING)

(2AM  SATURDAY EASTERN US TIME, 8AM IN FRANCE)

Tomorrow February 17th will mark the three month anniversary of the Yellow Vests protests in France, a response to the economic-tax policies of President Emmanuel Macron.

And a special protest is planned in Paris in connection with the anniversary tomorrow afternoon.

But for today a nationwide protest schedule including multiple locations in Paris.   Bordeaux, Marseille and other locations also involved today.



(3 AM EASTERN US, 9AM IN FRANCE)

Yellow Vests are visible on the Champs-Elysees in Paris right now.

(4AM EASTERN US, 10 AM IN FRANCE)

As we wait for protests to materialize today its worth considering how the Left side of politics is so mixed up and the mainstream parties of the "Left" like "Labor" and "Socialist" suffer in public opinion today because its obvious those parties are just pro-business operations.

Many have been hustled into a so-called "Left" or "Liberal" agenda that's about diversity and inclusion, open borders and the climate change scam.

And what do you end up with out of all this.   Big Business gets Cheap Labor from a diverse background and they get lower taxes on them while little people pay higher taxes like the folks in France do at the gas pump.

These mainstream parties and politicians like Emmanuel Macron in France are tools of Big Banks and Big Business using a supposedly progressive policy on climate change to favor Big Business at the expense of rural people, small business and middle class-lower class people.

Nancy Pelosi and her "Green New Deal" is exactly what the big money donors want and it will shaft the working people.

(410 AM EASTERN US, 1010 AM IN FRANCE)

Several processions moving in the streets of Paris with the first moving down the Champs-Elysees at Noon.

Video from the "Muliplex" showing protesters in several places right now including Tarbes near the border with Spain.  Also visible a protest at a warehouse distribution facility in Amiens.

Here is the link......LIVE-MULTIPLEX-YELLOW VESTS-ACT XIV

(420 PM EASTERN US, 1020 AM IN FRANCE)

The protests in Paris wrap up this evening from 7 to 10 pm with a rally at the Stalingrad Square in Paris.  Also this evening from 5 to 10 pm a rally at the Place of the Republic in Paris.

Will come back after 5am Eastern US...…

(530 AM EASTERN US, 1130 AM IN FRANCE)

What we've been shown on BFM-TV in the last half hour or so is the large group of protesters at the Arc de Triomphe moving into the area where cars circle around it and causing some disprution of traffic.

Police in that area as well with the procession set to start on the Champs-Elysees at Noon.  The police have some of their armored vehicles with them.

We are also getting word that protests are on along highways with Saint-Arnoult-en-Yvelines the site of a toll free day.   Protesters letting cars pass without having to pay toll on this road, one of many given over to private companies by the government and turned into toll roads by the private entities.

More video from locations around France coming up on the Multiplex like Metz.

And now the link to the RT video coming from the Arc de Triomphe-Champs-Elysees in Paris.....RT-RUPTLY VIDEO FROM PARIS


(555 AM EASTERN US, 1155 AM IN FRANCE)

A few minutes to go before the procession starts but for now some protesters sitting down around the riot police guarded Arc de Triomphe.

News reports in the last 24 hours with Mrs. Macron being interviewed.  Brigitte Macron saying:  "We have to talk to each other, to reconcile ourselves.".

We will have more after 7am Eastern time....

(730 AM EASTERN US, 130 PM IN FRANCE)

This is not just a protest in urban areas as we see from the various Facebook videos in the Multiplex on You Tube.

Its also happening at the "roundabouts", traffic circles in towns and villages across France today.

And from Metz the Facebook video at the toll booth of the privately operated highway with the Yellow Vests letting motorists through without paying toll.

How do end up with private companies operating highways and charging tolls?

Because nations have to be attractive to business, the multinational corporations.

They must keep their corporate taxes low, so governments and politicians say "the sky is falling" as in global warming, climate change etc.

They justify taxes on little people like these gasoline taxes in France and in Canada they are jacking up utility bills to "save the planet" and creating a Yellow Vests movement there.

And you cut the costs of government by privatizing it as in selling off highways for operation by private companies.

But with that idea and I've heard it broached even here in the USA, the private companies run toll roads socking it to the little people again so corporations don't have to pay higher taxes to fund government, the welfare state etc.

(740 AM EASTERN US, 140 PM IN FRANCE)

Word from Strasbourg that 150 protesters are staging an unannounced protest in the city center disrupting business and causing police to warn them by megaphone the protest was not announced in advance.

Protesters are shouting back with "Benalla in prison" as in the former bodyguard of President Macron caught up in scandal and controversy.

(840 AM EASTERN US, 240 PM IN FRANCE)

The afternoon is the main period for protest today with a march underway in Toulouse right now.

Also a gathering in the town of Bourg-en-Bresse, northeast of Lyon and not too far from the Swiss border.   Authorities setting up 13 checkpoints there to search protesters and police plan to keep them out of the town center.

And that's it for this post with another one later today or this evening.......


Link below......

BFM-TV LIVE VIDEO

NEWS SUMMARY-INTELLIGENCE REPORT FRIDAY 2/15/2019


(EDITING, ADDITIONS, EXPANSION ETC. POSSIBLE UNTIL 8AM EASTERN US TIME)


President Trump will take executive action invoking emergency powers to help secure the nation's southern border and sign the bill coming out of Congress that only provides limited funding for a border barrier.   A figure of eight billion dollars in spending on a barrier is mentioned in media reports about the President's emergency plans.

Word of Trump's decision came from the White House Press Secretary Thursday.    The President's emergency action expected to trigger a quick court challenge from Democrats.

One America News Network looking into the massive spending plan President Trump is set to sign and found aid to foreign nations in the trillion dollar spending agreement.

5.3 billion dollars going to Ukraine, Israel and Jordan.  Those nations linked to other nations that President Trump and members of his administration have condemned.  Ukraine next door to Russia. Israel next door to Syria where Russia and Iran have supported the government.  Jordan also a neighbor of Syria.

From Syria a local media report that Russian military police in the area of the Kurdish city of Manbij are operating joint patrols with the Turkish military.    This is said to be taking place west and northwest of the city.


It was called a conference on "peace and security in the Middle East".

Some 60 nations represented at the conference in Warsaw this week but only two nations with high ranking delegations.

Israel led by its Prime Minister-Foreign Minister-Defense Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the US represented by Vice-President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and President Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner.

The messaging was strong against Iran with Netanyahu first tweeting then dropping the tweet saying the conference was to:

"advance the common interest of war with Iran"


After negative reaction to those comments, Netanyahu took them down.

The words he chose later were "combating Iran".

Vice President Mike Pence spoke Thursday saying European nations were taking an ill-advised step to:

"break American sanctions against Iran's murderous revolutionary regime"


From Secretary of State Mike Pompeo this:

"You can't achieve stability in the Middle East without confronting Iran"


Pompeo said Iran is behind "malign influences in Lebanon, Yemen, Syria and Iraq".


(SPECIAL COMMENT:   Two things one can consider as the pressure on Iran is ratcheted up by the United States and Israel at the Warsaw Conference.

President Trump is backing away from US involvement in Syria and Afghanistan but one wonders whether its a shift in strategy to now focus military energy against Iran.  The President has spoken of
use of an Iraqi base to 'watch Iran'.

And then one could ask if the noise about Iran is a distraction from the "Deal of the Century" plan being crafted by son-in-law Jared Kushner.    Conservative and patriotic Israelis and Christian Zionists and so on are emotionalized against Iran while a deal is made to give up 90 percent of Judea and Samaria to the Palestinian Arabs.)

And Prime Minister Netanyahu stirring up more controversy this time saying that Poles helped the Nazis perpetrate the Holocaust.

He told a reporter from "Haaretz" in Warsaw Thursday:

"Here I am saying Poles cooperated with the Nazis.   I know the history and I don't whitewash it.  I bring it up."


This led to a call from the Polish President saying that if indeed Mr. Netanyahu had said Poles collaborated with the Nazis,  a Holocaust related summit involving Poland and other countries set for next week in Israel should be cancelled.

But late word is that Poland's government had received clarification from Netanyahu saying his comments were misunderstood by the media.

However, the Israeli ambassador to Poland was summoned to the foreign ministry over the matter.

In Iran Wednesday at least 27 Iranian soldiers killed in the southeastern part of the country in a suicide bomb attack on a bus.

The attack near Pakistan, home of the Taliban, and of Afghanistan.    The US now involved in an accelerated peace process with the Taliban over Afghanistan's future.

Kashmir, a territory in dispute between India and Pakistan since the 1947 partition, is the scene of a deadly attack on an Indian military convoy.   46 soldiers killed and others wounded when an explosives laden van was driven into the convoy.

India says it holds Pakistan responsible for the attack and it will take diplomatic steps to ensure the "complete isolation" of Pakistan.

India says the Jaish-eMohammad group behind the attack is given sanctuary by Pakistan and Pakistan has failed to crack down on it.  India intends to withdrawal Most Favored Nation status for trade with Pakistan.

The president of Haiti says he's staying put for now.    Jovenel Moise says that if he leaves office the country will be in the hands of:

"armed gangs and drug traffickers"


A week of violent protests in the country with seven killed.

President Moise wants to talk with the political opposition.    The opposition started protesting after a court report said that government officials including the president were involved in irregularities surrounding loans made by Venezuela.

Canada has temporarily closed its embassy in Haiti and the United States has ordered all "non-emergency US personnel and their families" out of the country.

It was a symbolic vote and named no specific nation, but the vote was overwhelming in the European Parliament against excessive use of force against demonstrators and laws restricting protesters.    The resolution that passed was seen as directed against the French governments use of grenades and flash bang rounds on Yellow Vests and the recent passage of a law giving authorities the ability to prohibit individuals and groups from protesting.

The vote was 438 for, 78 against and 87 abstentions.

The debate before the vote mentioned Greece and Hungary, Spain and Romania, but France dominated the discussion ahead of the vote.

Eric Drouet, Yellow Vests protest figure and truck driver, is in court today in Paris.   Drouet was arrested last month for staging an unannounced protest on the Champs-Elysees near the Arc de Triomphe.    He could be sent to prison for six months and fined over 8-thousand dollars.

France's ambassador to Italy returning to Rome today after being withdrawn over Italian government support for Yellow Vests protesters.

The Battle of Brexit.....British Prime Minister Theresa May defeated in Parliament on Thursday with pro-Brexit Conservative MP's abstaining from supporting her resolution seen as an attempt to prevent the No-Deal option on March 29th.

The vote 303 to 258.

Mrs. May was not present in Parliament for the vote Thursday evening.


There is a multi-agency investigation underway by federal law enforcement into students from Saudi Arabia vanishing when they face criminal charges in the US, apparently with help from the Saudi government.

This information was passed to Democrat US Senator Ron Wyden from Oregon Wednesday by the Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan.

There have been cases in Oregon and seven other states of Saudi students fleeing the US when facing criminal charges including rape and manslaughter.

More from "OregonLive" at this link.....HERE

William Barr will be back for a second time as US Attorney General.   Barr, who was AG when George H.W. Bush, Bush 41, was confirmed at the Senate Thursday.    President Trump's pick approved 54-45.    One Republican, Rand Paul of Kentucky, opposing Barr on his views of Constititional rights and three Democrats choosing to vote for Barr.    Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Doug Jones of Alabama.

The man Doug Jones defeated in December 2017 in the Alabama Special Election, Judge Roy Moore, fighting a protracted court battle to clear his name.   Motions and countermotions between Moore and Leigh Corfman, whose allegations of sexual misconduct against Moore led to his defeat in the Special Election.

The former Assistant Director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe, said he acted the day after his former boss James Comey was fired by President Trump to create an "indelible" record of the investigation of alleged Russian collusion.

McCabe spoke to Scott Pelley of CBS for the "60 Minutes" program and a portion of the interview was released Thursday ahead of the broadcast of the full interview Sunday.

The next presidential election in France is still three years off, but if it were held now the same two candidates from 2017 would be the top two finishers in the first round and face off in the second round.

The Ifop poll taken in recent weeks shows Emmanuel Macron at 30 percent in the first round with Marine Le Pen at 27 percent.

In a second round matchup it would be Macron 56 percent and Le Pen 44 percent.

That's an improvement for Le Pen from her 2017 performance when she only got 34 percent of the vote in the second round.

Another poll taken in France earlier showed Marine Le Pen's approval among the people of France at 43 percent.   

Her niece, Marion Marechal, who gave up the "Le Pen" name hoping to be more popular is around the same level in approval at 45 percent.

And that's the way it really is on this Friday morning February 15th, 2019.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

FRANCE YELLOW VESTS LATEST:  MEDIA MAN LOSES USE OF EYE,  BOXER SENTENCED FOR FIGHTING BACK AGAINST POLICE, MRS. MACRON'S DAUGHTER DENIES PAYMENT


Jerome Rodrigues, media figure in the Yellow Vests movement, says he's permanently lost use of one eye after  being shot by a police "flash bang" round January 26th during a Yellow Vests protest in Paris.

Rodrigues was making a video of the protest and trying to keep the peace when he was suddenly hit by a police round.

Around two thousand Yellow Vests are estimated to have been injured by police during the 13 weeks of protests.

Boxer Christophe Dettinger was so angered by police shootings and beatings during the protest he fought back and was arrested.

On Wednesday at trial, Dettinger sentenced to 30 months in prison including 18 months of it being a suspended sentence.  Dettinger struck two riot police officers during a Yellow Vests protest.

He apologized for his actions during the trial.

Dettinger will be able in five days to apply for a work release status during his year of imprisonment.

The daughter of President Emmanuel Macron's wife Brigitte, Tiphaine Auziere, denies she's being paid to organized a "great debate" town hall meeting which is part of nationwide strategy by the government to counter the Yellow Vests protests.

Opposition politicians say the meetings are simply part of a political campaign and not a serious attempt to address the concerns of the Yellow Vests protesters.

Ingrid Levavasseur, who came out to announce herself as part of a Yellow Vests list of candidates for the European Parliament elections in May. is now distancing herself from the "Rally Citizenship Initiative" list after controversy about who might be behind the political movement.   A former Socialist Party cabinet minister and millionaire businessman, Bernard Tapie, was reported to be funding the group of candidates.

And from the Interior Minister Christophe Castaner today, word that there have 8400 arrests during the Yellow Vests protests.

(INFORMATION FROM BFM-TV VIA GOOGLE TRANSLATE USED FOR THIS POST, EDITING AND ADDITIONS THURSDAY AM)