Saif al Islam
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Saif al Islam
The Ongoing Killing Of a Good Man in 21st Century
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Hell Hath No Fury Like a Teflon Sultan By Pepe Escobar

Hell Hath No Fury Like a Teflon Sultan By Pepe Escobar | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
God apparently uses Face Time. It was via that iconic iPhone footage from an undisclosed location shown live on CNN Turk by a bewildered female anchor that Erdogan managed to call his legion of followers to hit the streets, unleash People Power and defeat the military faction that had taken over state TV and proclaimed to be in charge.

So God does work in mysterious mobile ways. Erdogan’s call was heeded even by young Turks who had fiercely protested against him in Gezi Park; were tear-gassed or water-cannoned by his police; think the AKP governing party is disgusting; but would support them against a “fascist military coup.” Not to mention that virtually every mosque across Turkey relayed Erdogan’s call.
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Over 1,500 arrested, 90 killed, 1,150 injured in Turkish coup attempt

Over 1,500 arrested, 90 killed, 1,150 injured in Turkish coup attempt | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Turkish loyalists report arresting 1,563 soldiers and officers implicated in an overnight coup attempt; 29 colonels and five generals have been sacked. At least 90 people have been killed and 1,154 injured in military action in Istanbul and Ankara.
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Coup attempt in Turkey

Pro-government forces have seized control of the top military HQ building, but there are still some groups of rebels resisting, a Turkish official said on Saturday, as cited by Reuters.

The official told the agency 1,563 military personnel were arrested following the coup attempt. But according to Milliyet, a Turkish daily, 1,374 were detained.

READ MORE: Military coup in Turkey LIVE UPDATES

General Hulusi Akar, who heads Turkey’s armed forces, has been rescued from rebel captivity. He was the most senior military official in their hands.

The rebels reportedly have several helicopter gunships in their disposal, but loyalists have threatened to shoot them down as they downed at least one aircraft carrying out attacks on government buildings.
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Arrepie-se com mais uma perspetiva do golo de Éder "Xuta, Xuta aí, Caralho!"

Arrepie-se com mais uma perspetiva do golo de Éder "Xuta, Xuta aí, Caralho!" | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Já muitas vezes terá certamente visto o golo de Éder, tal é a importância daquele momento para o futebol e desporto nacional.
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Presidency Council say charges too serious for Saif to be pardoned #Saif #Gaddafi #Libya #ICC #Zintan

The Presidency Council has weighed into the alleged release of Saif Al-Islam warning that he remains subject to Libyan and international claims that he committed crimes against humanity. In a statement issued today, the PC said that there could be no amnesty for such accusations.

“These charges do not lapse with the passage of time”, it said, “and are not subject to general or specific pardons, as per international conventions and international law dealing with human rights”.

It is being claimed that the Ministry of Justice in Beida issued a pardon, though the provenance of the document has been questioned. There has been no formal comment from the government of Abdullah Al-Thinni.

Al-Ajmal Al-Atiri, commander of Zintan’s Abubakr Al-Siddiq battalion has insisted that Saif has been freed but refuses to say where he is “for security reasons”. A British lawyer Karim Khan, who has represented Qaddafi’s second son and heir apparent, has also said that Saif is indeed free.
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Portugal Loses Ronaldo but Defeats France in Euro 2016 Final #NYT

Portugal Loses Ronaldo but Defeats France in Euro 2016 Final #NYT | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Cristiano Ronaldo was taken off on a stretcher in the first half with a knee injury, but Éder supplied the victory with a goal in the 109th minute.
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More than 30 dead & 60 wounded in Shi'ite holy site bombing, shooting outside Baghdad – reports

More than 30 dead & 60 wounded in Shi'ite holy site bombing, shooting outside Baghdad – reports | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it

Over 30 people have been killed and more than 60 others wounded in a car bomb attack on a Shi'ite mausoleum north of Baghdad, security sources said, according to Reuters. Several gunmen reportedly stormed the site, opening fire on Eid al-Fitr festival pilgrims.

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Gaddafi's son Saif, Libya's former heir apparent, released – lawyer

Gaddafi's son Saif, Libya's former heir apparent, released – lawyer | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
The son of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, Saif al-Islam, has reportedly been released from prison, more than four years after he was caught trying to flee the country by a rebel militia, despite being sentenced to death last year.

“He is well and safe and in Libya,” his lawyer Karim Khan told France 24, revealing that his client had been set free back on April 12, though the news had not been made public until now.
Khan suggested that Gaddafi did not face any future charges, and was let go “in accordance with Libyan law.”

READ MORE: 'Show trial': Gaddafi’s son Saif sentenced to death in absentia

Gaddafi had been held by an autonomous militia in the inland city of Zintan, following his capture in November 2011, on the way to Niger in the wake of his father’s summary execution.
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© Clear News ‘Despicable & inhumane’: Gaddafi son’s interrogators threaten sexual abuse with 23mm gun bullet

In 2015 a court in Tripoli, under control of Libya Dawn, a rival faction to the one holding him, sentenced him to death for ordering troops to fire at civilian targets, recruiting militia units, and inciting rape and murder during the Libyan civil war.

The trial was widely condemned by international organizations for slapdash judicial standards, and using confessions obtained under torture. Gaddafi was never handed over by the Zintan militia.

The 44-year-old Gaddafi is still wanted by the International Criminal Court in The Hague for a host of crimes against humanity, and war crimes associated with his father’s regime.
But Khan said that a repeat trial would constitute double jeopardy.

"It is prohibited to try an individual twice for the same offense," he insisted.

The urbane, London School of Economics-educated Gaddafi was often considered the second-in-command in Tripoli in the latter part of his father’s rule, and was touted to become his successor, before the war broke out.

READ MORE: Saadi Gaddafi torture video shows name guarantees ‘maximum mistreatment’ & no justice – lawyer to RT

His also led a lavish lifestyle, in which he socialized with Europe’s most prominent politicians and tycoons, and dated a well-known Israeli actress.
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'They abused, cut up corpses': Escaped ISIS fighter shares his horrors from Syria (RT EXCLUSIVE)

'They abused, cut up corpses': Escaped ISIS fighter shares his horrors from Syria (RT EXCLUSIVE) | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
He spent a year in Syria, protecting one of Islamic State’s most wanted leaders, but later managed to escape. Hiding his identity and in fear for his life, the former fighter sat down with RT and recounted the terror he witnessed.

RT had to change the man’s voice and keep him anonymous: A year on from fleeing Syria, he still fears revenge from Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL).
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‘Caress with the right hand, strike with the left’: Pope Francis condemns Syrian arms suppliers

‘Caress with the right hand, strike with the left’: Pope Francis condemns Syrian arms suppliers | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Pope Francis has criticized countries that talk of wanting peace in Syria, yet continue to supply arms to the warring sides.

The Pope did not name any names, but said in a video message to a charity group holding a conference on Syria: "While the people suffer, incredible quantities of money are being spent to supply weapons to fighters. And some of the countries supplying these arms are also among those that talk of peace.
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Pope Francis (L) arrives with Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II at the Khor Virap monastery, Armenia, June 26, 2016. © Alessandro Bianchi Vatican debunks Turkey’s ‘crusader pope’ accusations in Armenia genocide row

"How can you believe in someone who caresses you with the right hand and strikes you with the left hand?” he added.

According to international estimates, the war in Syria, currently in its fifth year, has claimed more than 400,000 lives, and a further 11 million have been displaced. As a conflict, it has created the biggest international refugee crisis since World War II.

Prospects look bleak, with the latest Syria peace talks stalled. The UN envoy to Syria told the Security Council last week it was difficult to say when they would resume.

Coinciding with the pontiff’s remarks was a fresh report by Amnesty International, which condemns the torture, punishment and murder perpetrated by jihadist groups against the people in northern Syria. The report documents “chilling” and widespread abuse of human rights, particularly in the volatile Aleppo and Idlib provinces.

The current international involvement includes some Sunni monarchies, together with the US and Britain, which continue to supply so-called moderate rebels with arms. The loosely organized opposition carries on its fight against the forces of President Bashar Assad, who is being supported and armed by Russia and Iran.
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Ultimate Viking war chant: Iceland greets team that won Europe’s heart (VIDEO) #ISL

Ultimate Viking war chant: Iceland greets team that won Europe’s heart (VIDEO) #ISL | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it

Thousands of Icelanders greeted their home team as they returned from their historic Euro 2016 endeavor. Naturally it soon erupted into what could be their most epic chant to date.

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Ladrões de Bicicletas: Portugal é hoje o campo de batalha de uma luta europeia

Nos últimos dois meses – e especialmente após o referendo britânico e as eleições em Espanha – assistimos a uma sucessão de declarações de responsáveis europeus sobre Portugal. Dombrovskis, Dijsselbloem, Regling, Schäuble e Oettinger têm vindo a exigir a imposição de sanções ao nosso país por incumprimento das regras orçamentais. Juncker, Schultz e Tusk, entre outros, mostram reservas à aplicação de sanções. Como se explica toda esta atenção e preocupação de tantos líderes europeus com Portugal?

À esquerda, em Portugal, tendemos a suspeitar que se trata de um ataque especificamente dirigido à actual maioria parlamentar. Não creio que isto seja suficiente para explicar o que se passa. Portugal não é assim tão importante - e é precisamente por isso que a pressão sobre o país se avoluma neste momento.

A direita europeia, em particular a alemã, tem uma visão sobre o que deve ser a União Europeia. Segundo esta visão, o continente europeu deve ser um mercado tão integrado como se de um só país se tratasse. Só assim as grandes empresas europeias (em particular as alemãs) poderão ganhar escala suficiente para competir globalmente com as multinacionais americanas e asiáticas. Para isso é preciso neutralizar todas as formas possíveis de interferência dos Estados nacionais sobre as economias respectivas. Isto passa, nomeadamente, por: abolir fronteiras, impor uma política de concorrência comum, gerir o comércio externo a partir de Bruxelas, privatizar as empresas públicas, criar uma moeda única gerida centralmente.

Há aqui um problema, porém. É que os países participantes têm situações económicas e estruturas produtivas muito distintas. Isso significa que as políticas económicas que são mais adequadas para uns poderão não sê-lo para outros. Se não forem criados mecanismos específicos para lidar com estas assimetrias, as economias mais frágeis tendem a ser afectadas por períodos longos de recessão económica e crise social, que facilmente se transformam em divergência económica e social permanente.

Este problema não é específico à UE, sendo ao invés comum a vários países compostos por economias sub-nacionais muito distintas (EUA, Alemanha, Itália, etc.). Em muitos desses países foram criados mecanismos para compensar as fragilidades económicas de algumas regiões e contrariar a tendência para a ocorrência de recessões prolongadas e de divergência económica e social intra-nacional. Por exemplo, quase um terço dos impostos pagos na Lombardia (região do Norte de Itália) servem para financiar as regiões do sul de Itália; cerca de metade do orçamento dos Estados do Leste da Alemanha é financiado pelos Estados ocidentais.


No seio da UE, porém, não existem condições para criar mecanismos semelhantes de transferências orçamentais permanentes para fazer face às diferenças de partida entre Estados Membros. Os movimentos nacionalistas nos países do Centro e Norte da Europa afirmam-se, em particular, pela oposição a tais transferências – e poucos governos estão dispostos a desafiar essa oposição neste momento, mesmo que quisessem (e muitos nunca o quiseram). As diferentes preferências nacionais quanto a aspectos centrais como a protecção social, os direitos laborais e o papel do Estado na economia constituirão sempre um entrave à criação de uma união orçamental robusta no seio da UE.

Como se pode, então, preservar o mercado interno e a moeda única na UE de modo a lidar com as enormes assimetrias no seu seio, sem poder recorrer a transferências orçamentais relevantes? Para a visão dominante na UE, a resposta é clara: as economias mais frágeis têm de estar preparadas para lidar com os piores cenários sem dependerem dos restantes países. Isso significa reduzir o endividamento público e privado de forma permanente, e tornar as suas economias mais flexíveis. Por outras palavras, é preciso reduzir os salários, as pensões, as transferências sociais, os direitos sociais e laborais, tudo isto visando aumentar as exportações, atrair o investimento, reduzir a despesa pública e, desta forma, tornar os países mais auto-suficientes.

Posto nestes termos a estratégia até soa lógica. O problema está nas suas implicações. Na prática, como sabemos por experiência própria, a tentativa de combater as crises através da redução dos rendimentos de trabalho torna as recessões económicas mais profundas e prolongadas. No imediato, isto agrava ainda mais a situação das finanças públicas. Para além disso, a crise afasta o investimento e destrói competências (nomeadamente por via do desemprego e da emigração), levando a que os supostos benefícios da estratégia seguida tardem em surgir.

Quanto mais a crise se arrasta maior é a pressão para que os países afectados “reformem” as suas instituições. É que o prolongamento de um ritmo de crescimento económico medíocre conduz, inevitavelmente, a dificuldades orçamentais acrescidas. Por isso as lideranças europeias exigem mais cortes naquela despesa pública que conta (educação, saúde, segurança social) e maior redução dos salários (por via do congelamento nominal do salário mínimo e da redução dos direitos sociais e laborais, visando diminuir o poder negocial dos trabalhadores).

Ou seja, para Dombrovskis, Dijsselbloem, Regling, Schäuble e Oettinger (entre outros) tudo isto é muito claro: para que o mercado interno e a moeda única sobrevivam é preciso assegurar que as metas orçamentais são cumpridas e que as economias são efectivamente flexibilizadas. Estes dirigentes não estão fundamentalmente interessados em saber quem põe em prática tais políticas: se um governo de esquerda ou de direita. Na verdade, se forem governos supostamente de esquerda – como o Syriza na Grécia – tanto melhor: fica assim mais claro que as regras são mesmo para cumprir, se querem ficar no euro.

O problema é que cada vez menos cidadãos europeus aceitam esta conclusão. Em países onde a crise se arrasta – com fraca criação de emprego, generalização da pobreza e perda permanente dos direitos sociais e laborais – cada vez mais pessoas se questionam: se é este o preço que se paga pelo mercado interno e pela moeda única, para que queremos afinal a integração económica europeia?

Juncker, Schultz e Tusk – todos eles responsáveis máximos por instituições da UE – percebem bem estes riscos e vão tentando minimizá-los. Na verdade, também eles sabem que as recessões prolongadas e a divergência de níveis de desenvolvimento entre Estados Membros é um resultado expectável da actual arquitectura macroeconómica da UE. No fundo, sabem que a UE, tal como existe hoje, só é viável se boa parte das populações europeias estiver disposta a aceitar a crise prolongada nos seus países (e, eventualmente, a procurar outra vida no estrangeiro). Sabem também que isto é politicamente insustentável a prazo. E sabem ainda que as hipóteses de uma alteração substancial da UE que existe é extremamente reduzida. Perante os riscos de desagregação da UE, procuram ir minimizando os problemas, à espera que o tempo traga uma solução que hoje não se vislumbra.
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Syrian Militants Whom US Refused to Add 2 Terror List Shell UN Convoy/ @POTUS NARRATIVE OF SYRIAN REBELS MUST END

Syrian Militants Whom US Refused to Add 2 Terror List Shell UN Convoy/ @POTUS NARRATIVE OF SYRIAN REBELS MUST END | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Jaysh al-Islam, a group that is trying to overthrow Bashar al-Assad and establish a caliphate in Syria, has shelled a UN humanitarian convoy in the province of Damascus, the Russian Defense Ministry reported. Moscow urged the UN to designate the group as a terrorist organization, but the US blocked this initiative.
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A DESINTEGRAÇÃO DO MUNDO NEOLIBERAL: O PILOTO DO GOLPE SUMIU - Patria Latina

A DESINTEGRAÇÃO DO MUNDO NEOLIBERAL: O PILOTO DO GOLPE SUMIU - Patria Latina | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it

É o segundo espasmo de morte do neoliberalismo; o primeiro atingiu sua jugular econômica com a crise financeira sistêmica de 2008, da qual o organismo nunca mais se recuperou.
Agora foi a carótida política.
O sangue venoso e o arterial se misturaram espalhando a morte para dentro e para fora dos trilhos do livre mercado até descarrilar seu trem político.
É esse o filme que estreou em circuito mundial neste fim de semana.
Nas telas, o comboio bufa, estrebucha e arrebenta o que encontra pela frente, atrás e dos lados.
Tudo o que era sólido se desmancha no ar.
Mas ficha resiste em cair nos rincões mais aguerridos. Faz parte do desastre negá-lo.
O jornal Valor desta 2ª feira é um exemplo pungente.
Garrafais no alto da página proclamam em meio à montanha desordenada de ruínas a que foram reduzidos os pilares do golpe: ‘Brexit deve ter impacto limitado para o Brasil’
Sim, tanto quanto um frango desossado da Sadia consegue fazer uma pirueta e parar de pé na Praça dos Três Poderes.
O frango desossado tipo Serra, por exemplo.
A charanga estratégica do golpe desafina mas ele anuncia solene: ‘Distinto público, vamos redefinir a política externa ideológica em direção à maior liberalização dos mercados’.
Dá uma pirueta e se espatifa no picadeiro.
A cerca-lo, leões famintos rugem intenções opostas.
De um lado, a segunda maior economia da Europa troveja seu não a uniões enlaçadas pelo julgo ortodoxo, na sexta-feira; de outro, instintos protecionistas dos americanos cospem fogo pelas ventas de Donald Trump; mais próximo do seu pescoço, a política espanhola reafirma a impotência das soluções convencionais para tirar a economia do atoleiro neoliberal em que se encontra…
Etc.
Estivessem algo menos perplexos, os jornalistas embarcados talvez fizessem uma primeira autocrítica dos muitos anos de certezas graníticas.
Admitir que o único chão firme nesse momento são as reservas de US$ 370 bilhões que o ‘lulopetistmo’ acumulou, sob o bombardeio da crônica neoliberal, seria um bom começo.
Mas os tempos são turvos demais para a clareza dos espíritos.
Na Inglaterra, 52% dos eleitores resolveram dar um passo à frente caminhando dois para trás: por uma diferença de 1.269.000 votos, a consulta popular da última sexta-feira decidiu a saída do país da União Europeia.
Dois dias depois, a Espanha foi às urnas pela segunda vez desde dezembro: do Podemos, que decepcionou, ao conservador PP, que venceu, sem liderar, nenhuma força saiu daí mandatada para dar um rumo novo ao ocaso econômico e social em que se encontra o país, após oito anos de terapêutica neoliberal.
Nos EUA, o bafo morno das tempestades traz uivantes advertências de um conservadorismo que já não controla mais a criatura, com jeito de ‘anos 30’, como diz a Economist, que germina em seu ventre.
O desmonte que se aplica a contrapelo das urnas no Brasil deveria ser analisado à luz da gravidade pedagógica do curso tomado pela história nas últimas horas.
Sobretudo os senadores que em breve decidirão um processo ilegítimo de impeachment deveriam se perguntar: ‘Esgarçada a democracia, o que restará à nação?’
Não é precisa ser de esquerda para sopesar e refletir a gravidade do que se divisa do mirante da convulsão global: basta ser lúcido, contemporâneo e consciente das responsabilidades públicas com o futuro brasileiro.
Quantos desses há no Senado brasileiro?
O neoliberalismo revivificado aqui como diretriz ‘legitimadora’ do golpe , esfumou-se como alternativa de organização social e econômica na segunda principal economia da Europa.
Ao mesmo tempo e com igual intensidade, reafirmou o dano colateral da fragmentação política que se instala em sociedades submetidas a sua dieta, como mostra o caso do ‘ajuste espanhol’.
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Huge blast rocks arms factory near Aleppo as ISIS, Al-Nusra shell city & attack Syria troops (VIDEO)

Huge blast rocks arms factory near Aleppo as ISIS, Al-Nusra shell city & attack Syria troops (VIDEO) | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it

Terrorists shelled parts of the Syrian city of Aleppo with rockets, killing at least five and injuring another nine people on Saturday. Meanwhile, a massive explosion was seen at a military plant outside Aleppo, with blasts heard in a 100km radius from the site.

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A reclusive religious scholar in Pennsylvania may be behind the attempted coup in Turkey #Gulen

A reclusive religious scholar in Pennsylvania may be behind the attempted coup in Turkey #Gulen | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Updated 9:25pm ET As tanks take up positions in the streets and jets fly overhead in a dramatic coup attempt in Turkey, suspicion has fallen on Fethullah Gulen, a US-based Turkish religious scholar and political enemy of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the strongman Turkish president. Until now, Erdogan had appeared to have crushed the 75-year-old Gulen, wh
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Creation of United Army Against Daesh Main Task for Libya - UN Envoy

Creation of United Army Against Daesh Main Task for Libya - UN Envoy | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Libya said that Libya's primary task must be the creation of a unified army to fight the Daesh militant group.
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“Épico”: veja as capas dos jornais sobre a vitória de Portugal

“Épico”: veja as capas dos jornais sobre a vitória de Portugal | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Portugal é campeão europeu. Um golo de Éder levou a seleção nacional a vencer a equipa francesa de Griezman. "Campeões" e "Reis da Europa" são alguns dos adjetivos usados para a nossa seleção.
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French jihadist in Turkish jail seeks return to Europe with 4 wives, 7 kids

French jihadist in Turkish jail seeks return to Europe with 4 wives, 7 kids | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it

A French jihadist who fought for Al-Nusra and Islamic State in Syria since 2013 and who is UN blacklisted apparently feels pangs of remorse. He is being held in a Turkish jail and has asked France to take him back, along with several relatives, French media reported.

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M of A - Libya - Part III - The Return Of The King Saif Gaddafi

The news of the release from a Libyan prison in Zintan of Saif Al Islam Gaddafi, heir apparent to his late father, is surprising to many outsiders but it nothing to what may come next - a return in some form to power.

In Libya’s 2011 Arab Spring uprising, Saif joined his father and sons on the barricades, castigating NATO-backed rebels in a bitter revolutionary war. While those rebels later cornered and killed his father Muammar and brother Moatasim in Sirte, Saif was captured alive trying to flee through the Sahara desert to Niger.

It may be his good fortune that the units capturing him were from Zintan, a mountain town south of Tripoli, who later went to war with Islamist led Libya Dawn which captured the capital in 2014. When a mass trial was held of former regime figures there, Zintan refused to hand Saif over, sparing him the brutalities inflicted on other prisoners including former intelligence chief Abdullah al Senussi and his younger brother Saif, who was filmed being beaten in a Tripoli prison cell.

Zintanis were no friends of the former regime, fighting against Gaddafi’s forces as one of the most effective rebel outfits during the uprising that was won by NATO bombing.

But from the few accounts of those allowed to visit him in a closely guarded compound somewhere in the town, he has been treated well, living under what amounts to house arrest, until now.

A year ago a Tripoli court operating under Libya Dawn auspices sentenced him, and either others including Al Senussi, to death. Up in Zintan, not much changed for Saif, with Zintan still digging in its heels and refusing to hand him over to Tripoli’s grim Al Hadba prison.

The shambolic UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) under a puppet PM who operates out of Tripoli naval base, the only part of the city they control, however appears to be responsible for the amnesty order given in April to Saif and other prisoners removing their death sentences and ordering them to be freed.

Since then, Saif’s location is a mystery, but Zintan’s attitude to him is tempered by their alliance with former Gaddafi-supporting tribes, including those from Beni Walid and Warshefani, in their brutal battle with Libya Dawn’s Islamists. The Gaddafi tribe itself has a base south of Zintan around Sebha, making common cause with the Zintanis against Libya Dawn militias who control the capital and lord it over the GNA.
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Timorenses celebram vitória de Portugal em festa sem precedentes

Timorenses celebram vitória de Portugal em festa sem precedentes | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Timorenses celebram vitória de Portugal em festa sem precedentes Milhares de timorenses aos gritos com "Viva Portugal", coloridos com milhares de bandeiras portuguesas dominam desde o final do jogo de Portugal contra o País de Gales nas ruas de Díli, numa longa caravana que parece não ter fim.
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Blair pledges ‘no excuses’ for Iraq, then spends 2hrs making excuses

Blair pledges ‘no excuses’ for Iraq, then spends 2hrs making excuses | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Tony Blair has taken responsibility for the Iraq War but refused to accept that Britain’s toppling of Saddam Hussein could have anything to do with spreading instability in the region.
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Chilcot Inquiry

In a nearly two hour-long news conference, the former prime minister said he still believes he acted in “good faith” and that the decision was the “hardest, most momentous, most agonizing” one he ever took.

The Chilcot report, however, suggests the legal base for the move was “far from satisfactory” and attributes the PM’s decisions to stubbornness.
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George Steiner: “Estamos matando los sueños de nuestros niños”

George Steiner: “Estamos matando los sueños de nuestros niños” | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Primero fue un fax. Nadie respondió a la arqueológica intentona. Luego, una carta postal (sí, aquellas reliquias consistentes en un papel escrito y metido en un sobre). “No les contestará, está enfermo”, previno alguien que le conoce bien. A los pocos días llegó la respuesta. Carta por avión con el matasellos del Royal Mail y el perfil de la Reina de Inglaterra. En el encabezado ponía: Churchill College. Cambridge.

El breve texto decía así:

“Querido Señor,

El año 88 y una salud incierta. Pero su visita sería un honor. Con mis mejores deseos.

George Steiner”.

Dos meses después, el viejo profesor había dicho “sí”, poniendo provisional coto a su proverbial aversión a las entrevistas.

El catedrático de literatura comparada, el lector de latín y griego, la eminencia de Princeton, Stanford, Ginebra y Cambridge; el hijo de judíos vieneses que huyeron del nazismo primero a París y luego a Nueva York; el filósofo de las cosas del ayer, del hoy y del mañana; el premio Príncipe de Asturias de Comunicación y Humanidades en 2001, el polemista y mitólogo políglota y el autor de libros capitales del pensamiento moderno, la historia y la semiótica como Errata, Nostalgia del absoluto, La idea de Europa, Tolstoi o Dostoievski o La poesía del pensamiento abría a EL PAÍS las puertas de su preciosa casita de Barrow Road.

"Estoy asqueado por la educación escolar de hoy, que es una fábrica de incultos y que no respeta la memoria"

El pretexto: los dos libros que la editorial Siruela ha publicado recientemente en español. Por un lado Fragmentos, un minúsculo aunque denso compendio de algunas de las cuestiones que obsesionan al autor como la muerte y la eutanasia, la amistad y el amor, la religión y sus peligros, el poder del dinero o las difusas fronteras entre el bien y el mal. Por el otro, Un largo sábado, embriagador libro de conversaciones entre Steiner y la periodista y filóloga francesa Laure Adler.

El motivo real: hablar de lo que fuera surgiendo.

Es una mañana de lluvia en la campiña de Cambridge. Zara, la encantadora esposa de George Steiner (París, 1929), trae café y pastas. El profesor y sus 12.000 libros miran de frente al visitante.

PREGUNTA. Profesor Steiner, la primera pregunta es ¿cómo está su salud?

RESPUESTA. Oooh, muy mal, por desgracia. Tengo ya 88 años y la cosa no va bien, pero no pasa nada. He tenido y tengo mucha suerte en la vida y ahora la cosa va mal, aunque todavía paso algunos días buenos.

P. Cuando uno se siente mal… ¿es inevitable sentir nostalgia de los días felices? ¿Huye usted de la nostalgia o puede ser un refugio?

R. No, lo que uno tiene es la impresión de haber dejado de hacer muchas cosas importantes en la vida. Y de no haber comprendido del todo hasta qué punto la vejez es un problema, ese debilitamiento progresivo. Lo que me perturba más es el miedo a la demencia. A nuestro alrededor el Alzhéimer hace estragos. Así que yo, para luchar contra eso, hago todos los días unos ejercicios de memoria y de atención.
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Whitewashing Libya: House Report on Benghazi Reveals Nothing, Hides Everything | New Eastern Outlook

Whitewashing Libya: House Report on Benghazi Reveals Nothing, Hides Everything | New Eastern Outlook | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
The Republican dominated House Select Committee on Benghazi has released its long awaited final report on the 2012 Benghazi attack which killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others. And, surprise, the report reveals absolutely nothing of substance that wasn’t already known.

Naturally, Democrats running interference for Hillary Clinton have continually charged that the probe was simply an act of partisan politics designed more to hurt Clinton in the presidential campaign than to uncover the truth about what happened. No doubt there is truth to such an allegation.

But the most important fact about this whole manufactured drama, the one that neither Democrats nor Republicans want to touch, is the simple fact that what happened in Benghazi was perhaps the most complete encapsulation of everything wrong and criminal about the illegal US war against Libya. Moreover, it exposes the uncomfortable truth that the US harnesses terrorism, using it as one of the most potent weapons it has against nations that refuse to submit to the will of Washington and Wall Street. In effect, it was not merely terrorists that killed the four Americans in Benghazi, it was US policy.

The Benghazi Report: 800 Pages of Almost Nothing

Despite the triumphal pronouncements of Republican political opportunists, the new report reveals very little that is new. As the Wall Street Journal noted:

“Congressional Republicans’ most comprehensive report yet on the 2012 terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Libya, outlined few new criticisms of Hillary Clinton, highlighting more broadly what it called an array of failings by the Obama administration…The report largely confirmed the existing story line—that a group of anti-American Libyan militants stormed U.S. installations in a carefully planned assault, killing four Americans, including Christopher Stevens, the ambassador to Libya…The latest document presented few notable facts not found in earlier investigations…”

As the Wall Street Journal correctly notes, the new report is mostly just a rehashing of prior conclusions reached from previous reports, while doing yeoman’s service for the political establishment by confirming and, consequently, concretizing a completely distorted narrative about what happened. Essentially, the final report amounts to a whitewash that is more about scoring political points than revealing the truth about what happened. Why? Well, put simply, the truth of what happened in Benghazi implicates both wings of the single corporate Republicrat party.

There is mention of the CIA facility near the ‘US diplomatic facility’ in Benghazi, but absolutely no context for what exactly the CIA was involved in there, and how it relates to a much larger set of policies executed by the Obama administration, of which Hillary Clinton was a key player. Indeed, the very fact that this critical piece of the puzzle is conspicuously missing from the Official NarrativeTM demonstrates that the House Select Committee on Benghazi report is more about concealing the truth than revealing it.

Take for instance the fact that the report totally ignores the connection between the CIA facility and mission in Benghazi and the smuggling of arms and fighters from Libya to Syria in an attempt to export to Syria the same sort of regime change that wrought death and destruction on Libya. As Judicial Watch noted in regard to the declassified material it obtained:

Judicial Watch…obtained more than 100 pages of previously classified “Secret” documents from the Department of Defense (DOD)and the Department of State revealing that DOD almost immediately reported that the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi was committed by the al Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood-linked “Brigades of the Captive Omar Abdul Rahman” (BCOAR), and had been planned at least 10 days in advance…The new documents also provide the first official confirmation that shows the U.S. government was aware of arms shipments from Benghazi to Syria. The documents also include an August 2012 analysis warning of the rise of ISIS and the predicted failure of the Obama policy of regime change in Syria.
http://journal-neo.org/2016/07/03/whitewashing-libya-house-report-on-benghazi-reveals-nothing-hides-everything/
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Libya: new testimonies reveal horrors inflicted on refugees and migrants by traffickers

Libya: new testimonies reveal horrors inflicted on refugees and migrants by traffickers | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it
Dozens tell Amnesty stories of death, rape and starvation at hands of their captors

Smugglers threw disabled man from a pick-up truck and left him to die in the desert

‘We didn’t see the sun for nine months’ - 21-year-old Christian woman from Eritrea, held captive underground in Tripoli

New accounts of killings, sexual violence, torture and religious persecution gathered by Amnesty International reveal the horrors being inflicted on refugees and migrants by people traffickers and smugglers in Libya, the organisation said today.

Amnesty recently spoke to over 90 refugees and migrants at reception centres in Puglia and Sicily in Italy who’d made the journey across the Mediterranean from Libya to southern Italy in the past few months, and who were abused by people smugglers, traffickers, organised criminal gangs and armed groups at every stage of their journey - from their arrival in Libya until they reached the coast. Others had lived in Libya for years but wanted to escape because of harassment or abuse by local gangs, the police or armed groups.

The majority reported being victims of human trafficking, saying they were held by traffickers as soon as they entered Libya or were sold on to criminal gangs. Several described being raped, tortured or exploited by those who held them captive, and some witnessed people being shot dead. Others saw people left to die as a result of illness or ill-treatment.

Paolos, a 24-year-old Eritrean man who travelled through Sudan and Chad and arrived in Libya in April, described how smugglers abandoned a disabled man in the desert as they crossed the Libyan border heading to the town of Sabha. “We saw them throw one man [out of the pick-up truck] into the desert. He was still alive. He was a disabled man,” he said.

Ahmed, an 18-year-old Somalian, described his journey through the desert from Sudan to Libya in November: “When you [arrive in] Libya, that’s when the struggle starts. That’s when they start to beat you.” He said smugglers refused to give them water as punishment and even shot at them when they requested water for several desperately thirsty Syrian men travelling with them. “The first Syrian died, he was young, maybe 21 years old. After this they gave us water, but the other Syrian man also died … he was only 19,” said Ahmed, adding that the smugglers seized the dead men’s belongings and didn’t allow them to be buried.

Amnesty International Middle East and North Africa Deputy Director Magdalena Mughrabi said:


“Their experiences paint a terrifying picture of the conditions many of those who come to Europe are so desperate to escape.

“The Libyan authorities must take urgent steps to restore the rule of law and protect the rights of refugees and migrants.

“The EU should focus less on keeping migrants and refugees out and more on finding safe and legal ways for those trapped in Libya to access a place of safety.”


Women and girls raped by their traffickers
Most of the 15 women Amnesty spoke to said they had lived in perpetual fear of sexual violence along the journey to the Libyan coast. Many said rape was so commonplace that they took contraceptive pills before travelling. Medical staff at a reception centre for migrants and refugees in Bari in Italy confirmed that other women reported having gone through the same experience. According to the women’s testimonies, the women were sexually assaulted either by the smugglers themselves, by traffickers or by members of armed groups, with attacks taking place along the smuggling route and while women were being held in private homes or abandoned warehouses near the coast waiting to board boats to Europe.
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Grim testimony of brutalized refugees fleeing through Libya

Grim testimony of brutalized refugees fleeing through Libya | Saif al Islam | Scoop.it

Horrifying testimony given by refugees who were subjected to rape, violence and exploitation while fleeing Libya has been published by the UK wing of NGO, Amnesty International.

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