Obama on Friday said social media and the nightly news are partly to blame for the sense that “the world is falling apart”
By Justin Sink – 08/29/14 06:02 PM EDT
President Obama on Friday said social media and the nightly news are partly to blame for the sense that “the world is falling apart.”
“I can see why a lot of folks are troubled,” Obama told a group of donors gathered at a Democratic National Committee barbecue in Purchase, N.Y.
But the president said that current foreign policy crises across the world are not comparable to the challenges the U.S. faced during the Cold War.
Acknowledging “the barbarity” of Islamist militants and Russia “reasserting the notion that might means right,” Obama, though, dismissed the notion that he was facing unprecedented challenges.
“The world’s always been messy … we’re just noticing now in part because of social media,” he said, according to a White House pool report.
“If you watch the nightly news, it feels like the world is falling apart,” said Obama.
The president acknowledged that conflicts in the Middle East posed difficulties, “but it’s been challenging for quite a while,” he said.
“We will get through these challenging times just like we have in the past,” Obama added.
The president, looking to strike a reassuring tone, argued that American military superiority has never been greater and that the U.S. still held advantages over potential international rivals like China.
The event, held at the home of Robert Wolf, an occasional Obama golf partner and former president of UBS Investment Bank, was the second of three fundraisers the president was slated to attend on Friday. Tickets to the event began at $15,000 per couple, and around 250 supporters were in attendance.
Read more: http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/216281-media-makes-you-think-world-is-falling-apart#ixzz3BtoPsWWb
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Advisory arrives from kingdom after it financed the terror caliphate
by KURT NIMMO | INFOWARS.COM | AUGUST 30, 2014
King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, the most powerful Muslim in the world, is warning IS, formerly ISIS, will soon attack the United States.
“If we ignore them, I am sure they will reach Europe in a month and America in another month,” he told Asharq al-Awsat daily and Saudi-owned pan-Arab Al-Arabiya television on Saturday.
“Terrorism knows no border and its danger could affect several countries outside the Middle East,” he added.
“It is no secret to you, what they have done and what they have yet to do. I ask you to transmit this message to your leaders: ‘Fight terrorism with force, reason and (necessary) speed’.”
ISIS and its predecessor, al-Qaeda, were financed by Saudi Arabia. The Saudis routinely denounce the terrorist groups they finance after the groups gain international notoriety.
The Saudis are now engaged in a propaganda campaign designed to put distance between the monarchy and IS.
The Saudi ambassador to the United Nations issued a stern rebuttal after The Guardian said Saudi Arabia has been “funding the most intolerant brand of Islam” and the grand mufti of Saudi Arabia issued a statement condemning the Islamic State.
“Saudi Arabia has been a major source of financing to rebel and terrorist organizations since the 1970s, thanks to the amount it has spent on spreading its puritan version of Islam, developed by Mohammed Abdul Wahhab in the 18th century,” writes Paul Vallely for the Belfast Telegraph.
The former Prime Minister of Iraq, Nouri al-Maliki, has accused Saudi Arabia and the neighboring Wahhabist kingdom of Qatar of financing IS.
“I accuse them of inciting and encouraging the terrorist movements. I accuse them of supporting them politically and in the media, of supporting them with money and by buying weapons for them,” he told France 24 television in March.
A British student has thrown in his lot with hundreds of UK citizens fighting with the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS), bragging of joining the “golden era of jihad” in a new online video.
In the video, 21-year-old Londoner Hamzah Parvez called on fellow Muslim Britons to “come to the land of jihad and shout Allah,” while claiming he has been fighting with the IS for five months.
“This is the golden era of jihad,” says Parvez in a thick London accent, his face hidden behind a black scarf. “What are we doing sitting in the UK? Sitting in the land which kills Muslims every day. What are we doing in their lands? It is not the lands for us.”
This is the latest video to emerge since James Foley, a US freelance journalist captured by militants in Syria in 2012, was beheaded on film by another British jihadist.
In it, Parvez urges other British Muslims to join the foreign fighters, where there are “jobs for doctors, nurses, architects, builders, even for street cleaners in the Islamic State.” The footage is thought to be the first of a British citizen fighting in Iraq rather than Syria.
‘I have no plans to come home’
It is alleged that Parvez, who came from a stable West London background, convinced his family to pay for a study trip to Germany. He then slipped out of Europe and traveled to the Middle East to join the estimated 2,000 foreign fighters in the region.
His family is speaking out to warn against the dangers of radicalization among young British Muslims. A member of the Parvez family told ITV News of their devastation at his decision to abandon his home and join the IS, and that the ‘swaggering militant’ bore little resemblance to the brother and best friend they remembered.
“That’s not my brother. My brother doesn’t act like that,” one family member said. “My brother doesn’t call people to do violence against others. I don’t recognize him. That’s just the same body, it’s not the characteristic of my brother. It’s not the way he speaks. It’s not the way he acts. It’s not the way he addresses people. That’s not my brother.”
The family says Parvez called them this week and admitted he was fighting with ISIS, but laughed when confronted about his lies. One brother says he asked, “Can you admit that you lied to us? Can you say it to us that you are sorry? And he said I’m sorry and the way he said it, he laughed. I felt like he didn’t mean it.
“He said, ‘I have no plans to come home.’ My sister asked the question ‘What if your mum or dad died?’ He said ‘I would pray for them.’
“That’s when I lost it. I started shouting at him, I started swearing at him, ‘These are your parents! These are the people since day one have been there for you, and you say you wouldn’t attend their funeral and why? Because you want to serve this stupid leader, this self-proclaimed leader, over my parents,’” the brother said.
Around 30 UK citizens every month are now traveling to Syria and Iraq across the frontier, in a journey dubbed the ‘Jihad Express’. About 500 British citizens are believed to have traveled to Syria to join militant groups, though some have estimated that figure could be up to three times higher.
The issue of preventing extremism in the UK and how to stop British citizens traveling to the Middle East to join extremist militant groups has generated controversy. As UK Special Forces seek the British-born Islamic State jihadist suspected of murdering Foley, the government is redoubling efforts to stop Brits from joining militants and to prosecute those who return.
‘Prevent’, part of the government’s broader counter-terrorism strategy, aims to “stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism,” by mentoring people that are at the risk of “being drawn into terrorist activity.”
Home Secretary Theresa May has proposed changes to the law to target extremists and radicalization in the UK. She said she was “looking again at the case for new banning orders for extremist groups.” She has also publicly reiterated her office’s ability to strip Brits fighting abroad of their citizenship.
Tehran has showcased an indigenous long-range air defense system, the Bavar-373 missile, developed as an alternative to the Russian S-300 after Moscow canceled its contract.
“Bavar-373 has fired a first successful shot,” the commander of the Khatam ol-Anbia Air Defense Base, Brigadier General Farzad Esmayeeli, told Iranian state TV on Friday.
According to Iranian security officials, the new system is better than the Russian S-300, as it is able to track over 100 targets, just like the Russian system but with a higher targeting capability.
“We believe that ‘Bavar’ and ‘3rd of Khordad’ missile shields are better than some other long-range missile defense systems of the country,” ol-Anbia added, Fars news reports.
Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, ordered the development of the missile system, after then Russian President Dmitry Medvedev banned armed sales to the country in light of UN sanctions against Tehran. Following the move, Iran filed a $4 billion lawsuit against Russia in the international arbitration court in Geneva.
The S-300 is a long-range surface-to-air missile system produced by NPO Almaz. It is designed to be used as a defensive weapon against aircraft and cruise missiles.
Meanwhile, Iran’s Air Defense commander boasted that the country’s defense systems will track down all of Islamic Republic’s enemies if they fly over Iran’s airspace.
“We give a warning to the enemy’s aircraft before entering the Islamic Republic’s airspace, and deem any kind of intruding drones or planes of enemy a threat, and shoot it down immediately in case of entry [into Iran],” Colonel Mahmoud Ahmadi, commander of Iran’s southwestern Air Defense zone, Tasnim news reported.
This follow an August 24 incident, when the country’s forces shot down a stealth drone thought to be sent from Israel. The invading “Hermes” aircraft was intercepted by a surface-to-air missile.
Iran has also unveiled plans to increase the number of air defense sites from the current 3,600 to 5,000, according to Brigadier General Farzad Esmayeeli.
NORVELL ROSE — AUGUST 29, 2014
For the first time since January, 2010, Britain has raised its terror threat level — to SEVERE — an extraordinary move indicating an attack is “highly likely.”
Business Insider reports that Britain’s Home Secretary, Theresa May, just announced the rise in threat level.
It’s the fourth-highest of five potential threat levels. According to the U.K. government, it means an attack is “highly likely.” But there is no intelligence to suggest an attack is imminent.
May said the threat level was raised in general because of the deteriorating situation in Iraq and Syria…. May said, however, that there was no specific threat to Britain that caused the raise in the terror level.
“The increase in the threat level is related to developments in Syria and Iraq where terrorist groups are planning attacks against the West. Some of these plots are likely to involve foreign fighters who have travelled there from the UK and Europe to take part in those conflicts,” May said.
British officials say that hundreds of U.K. citizens are believed to have joined ISIS forces in Syria and Iraq — citizens whose return to their homeland could present a grave threat.
At least 400 people from Britain have traveled to Middle Eastern regions to join ISIS, according to Prime Minister David Cameron. Western officials have warned about the possibility of ISIS fighters holding Western countries’ passports traveling back to those countries to plan and possibly launch attacks.
Meantime, as our close ally across the Atlantic prepares itself for a possible terror attack, President Obama is off on another “fundraising spree”, as the New York Daily News describes Obama’s Labor Day weekend activities.
Obama is scheduled to attend two Westchester fundraisers Friday before flying to Newport, R.I., to help raise money for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
Of course, this is typical Obama scheduling in the midst of international crises, and in the wake of a news conference for which he is severely criticized — that “we have no strategy” for dealing with ISIS news conference. Time describes Obama’s starting remark as “the worst of Washington gaffes.”