Modern Global Crime: The New Piracy Hot Spot In Africa

Oil and Money — This is not like back in the days of “Jack Sparrow”

The Tactical Hermit

(Hint it is one of Africa’s Most Corrupt Countries and is Home to Boko Haram)


It’s Tuesday morning, and Phillip Belcher pauses anxiously before opening an email. The subject line reads: “Vessel under attack at this moment.” He clicks through to the bleak description that notes a ship is under attack by a skiff, or small boat and under fire. “Nobody attempted to board vessel yet,” the message continues, “but the crew is afraid that it may happen.” From Belcher’s office in central London, there is little he can do for those seamen besides hope for the best.

As marine director of the International Association of Independent Tanker Owners, which represents oil tankers from 40 countries, Belcher is getting used to receiving alerts about ongoing pirate attacks. But they don’t come from the famously pirate-friendly coast of war-torn Somalia. Instead, they’re increasingly being sent from the shores of Africa’s…

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A look at key events in Syria since March 2011 – San Francisco Chronicle

Protests erupt in the city of Daraa over security forces’ detention of a group of boys accused of painting anti-government graffiti on the walls of their school. On March 18, security forces open fire on a protest in Daraa, killing four people in what activists regard as the first deaths of the uprising. Security forces raid a sit-in in Syria’s third-largest city, Homs, where thousands of people tried to create the mood of Cairo’s Tahrir Square, the epicenter of protests against Egypt’s autocrat Hosni Mubarak. — July 2012: A bombing at the Syrian national security building in Damascus during a high-level government crisis meeting kills four top officials, including Assad’s brother-in-law and the defense minister. Backed by thousands of Lebanese Hezbollah fighters, Assad’s forces re-capture the strategic town of Qusair from rebels, near the border with Lebanon. Infighting among rebels spreads, pitting a variety of Islamic groups and moderate factions against the al-Qaida-breakaway Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Rebels withdraw from the old quarter of the central city of Homs in a significant symbolic victory for the government. Brahimi resigns as U.N.-Arab League envoy to Syria, marking a second failure by the United Nations and Arab League to end the civil war. Islamic State militants release video of the beheading of American journalist James Foley, the first of five Westerners to be beheaded by the IS group. The U.N. Security Council adopts resolution 2254 endorsing a road map for a transitional period in Syria that includes parliamentary and president elections as well as a new constitution within 18 months. Indirect peace talks between the Syrian government and opposition in Geneva collapse few days after starting, over a Russian-backed Syrian army offensive in Aleppo.

Source: A look at key events in Syria since March 2011 – San Francisco Chronicle

Mobile-built #USNavy ship plays role in real-life pirate drama

I have only seen one “real” pirate ship in person – it was in January 2012 in the Sea of Cortez – Fortunately, it was far off in the distance and I spied it with my monocular as it was dipping over the horizon. I found it to be breathtaking (from that distance) lol

It was supposed to be a U.S.-led naval training maneuver off the coast of West Africa when real-life drama intervened, with pirates taking over an oil tanker and turning the exercise into a rescue …

Source: Mobile-built US Navy ship plays role in real-life pirate drama


#hussein thinks of Turkey as an ally — Putin sees them as the enemy at large — As someone who taught my eldest grandson to say “Putin is evil” (never-mind that Jaykob liked saying it just because he thought he was saying POOT) Sometimes it can be hard to admit but this time Putin is CORRECT!

“Turkey, after all, is a critical ally in the global fight against ISIS and is among the only members of the U.S.-led coalition with bases near strategic ISIS strongholds. In July 2015, Turkey and the U.S. finalized an agreement to work cooperatively to combat Islamic State terrorists in Syria and Iraq, allowing the U.S. to launch air attacks from the Incirlik air base in southern Turkey against Islamic State terrorist networks in northern Syria.

Make no mistake: The Russian military presence in Armenia represents a dagger pointed at the heart of NATO as the Armenia-Russian alliance strengthens. But while Moscow is rattling its sabers, Washington remains silent.

Last August, The Moscow Times reported that President Putin told Turkey’s Ambassador to Moscow to “tell your dictator President he can go to hell along with his ISIS terrorists and I shall make Syria to nothing but a ‘Big Stalingrad.’” Histrionics aside, the intent is clear. Russia views Turkey as a hostile state and it will not back down.”

Bush Haunts the GOP, by Eric Margolis

The Dems are no less responsible!


From Eric Margolis at

“The evil that men do lives after them,” wrote Shakespeare. A prime example, former US President George W. Bush who appeared last week campaigning in South Carolina for his amiable younger brother, Jeb.

George W. continues to haunt the Republican Party and damage its electoral chances. At home, Bush has been staying out of public gaze; abroad, he is widely hated and limits overseas travel due to fear of war crimes arrest for his 2003 invasions of Iraq.

Republican spin doctors and the rightwing US media has been trying to soft soap Bush and his mentor, Dick Cheney, for years and slowly expunge their disastrous Iraq and Afghanistan Wars that opened a Pandora’s Box of horrors across the Muslim world. Democrats who cheered the war have equally sought to dodge responsibility. However, Hillary Clinton can’t seem to escape her tawdry war record.

The US, claim…

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