Duterte: “I Will Burn Down The United Nations”

The United Nations is making a lot of enemies.

Yesterday, when the Obama administration refused to veto a UN vote over Isreal settlements, one which provoked Israel to lash out at the Obama administration saying “friends don’t act that way”, but more importantly defied Trump who in a previous tweet urged Obama to veto the resolution, the President-elect had one message, or rather tweet, to the UN:

As to the U.N., things will be different after Jan. 20th.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 23, 2016

However, Trump is not the only one to hold a prominent grudge against the international organization, which many have accused of being nothing but an ineffective, if material, waste of taxpayer funds: taking Obama’s threat several steps further, Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to “burn down” the United Nations headquarters in New York, in response to mounting international criticism over his bloody crackdown on suspected drug dealers.

“You go and file a complaint in the United Nations, I will burn down the United Nations if you want,” Duterte said, quoted by the New York Times. “I will burn it down if I go to America,” he added during a speech at an army base in the country’s southern city of Zamboanga.

Earlier in the week, Duterte called Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, a top UN official, an “idiot” and “son of a bitch” after the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights suggested launching an investigation into Duterte’s own accounts of killings when he was mayor of Davao City, and the “shocking” number of deaths during the ongoing anti-drug war.

“This guy [Zeid] is ever the joker or crazy,” Duterte said during a televised speech, repeatedly calling him stupid. “You UN officials, sitting there on your asses, we pay you your salaries. You idiot, do not tell me what to do… Who gave you the right?” he said quoted by Reuters

Needless to say, the UN does not appear to be very popular among the Philippines ruling elite.

In September, the outspoken Philippines leader refused to meet UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and even threatened to leave the UN after it criticized his ‘War on Drugs.’ A UN official told Reuters it was “basically unheard of” for a leader to be too busy to meet the secretary-general.

More than 6,000 people have been killed as part of Duterte’s crackdown, a third by police and the rest still officially under investigation. Duterte says the shootings by police were in self-defence.

Duterte’s “controversial” methods of cracking down on illegal drugs stem from his 22 years as mayor of Davao City. Last week, Duterte admitted he personally killed suspected criminals during his time as mayor of Davao City (the third most populous metropolitan area in the Philippines with more than 1.6 million inhabitants), patrolling the streets on a motorcycle.

“In Davao I used to do it personally. Just to show to the guys [the police] that if I can do it, why can’t you,” Duterte said, as quoted by AFP.

He added that he would “go around in Davao with a motorcycle, with a big bike around, and I would just patrol the streets, looking for trouble also. I was really looking for a confrontation so I could kill.”

As for his parting shot at the UN’s employee and the overall organization, Duterte lashed out: “please shut up because your brain is lacking there,” he told Zeid.

“Go back to school. You United Nations, you do not know diplomacy. You do not know how to behave to be an employee of the United Nations” adding “You do not talk to me like that, you son of a bitch.”

And now, Trump seems to agree.

The post Duterte: “I Will Burn Down The United Nations” appeared first on crude-oil.top.

Duterte: “I Will Burn Down The United Nations”

The United Nations is making a lot of enemies.

Yesterday, when the Obama administration refused to veto a UN vote over Isreal settlements, one which provoked Israel to lash out at the Obama administration saying “friends don’t act that way”, but more importantly defied Trump who in a previous tweet urged Obama to veto the resolution, the President-elect had one message, or rather tweet, to the UN:

As to the U.N., things will be different after Jan. 20th.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 23, 2016

However, Trump is not the only one to hold a prominent grudge against the international organization, which many have accused of being nothing but an ineffective, if material, waste of taxpayer funds: taking Obama’s threat several steps further, Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to “burn down” the United Nations headquarters in New York, in response to mounting international criticism over his bloody crackdown on suspected drug dealers.

“You go and file a complaint in the United Nations, I will burn down the United Nations if you want,” Duterte said, quoted by the New York Times. “I will burn it down if I go to America,” he added during a speech at an army base in the country’s southern city of Zamboanga.

Earlier in the week, Duterte called Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, a top UN official, an “idiot” and “son of a bitch” after the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights suggested launching an investigation into Duterte’s own accounts of killings when he was mayor of Davao City, and the “shocking” number of deaths during the ongoing anti-drug war.

“This guy [Zeid] is ever the joker or crazy,” Duterte said during a televised speech, repeatedly calling him stupid. “You UN officials, sitting there on your asses, we pay you your salaries. You idiot, do not tell me what to do… Who gave you the right?” he said quoted by Reuters

Needless to say, the UN does not appear to be very popular among the Philippines ruling elite.

In September, the outspoken Philippines leader refused to meet UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and even threatened to leave the UN after it criticized his ‘War on Drugs.’ A UN official told Reuters it was “basically unheard of” for a leader to be too busy to meet the secretary-general.

More than 6,000 people have been killed as part of Duterte’s crackdown, a third by police and the rest still officially under investigation. Duterte says the shootings by police were in self-defence.

Duterte’s “controversial” methods of cracking down on illegal drugs stem from his 22 years as mayor of Davao City. Last week, Duterte admitted he personally killed suspected criminals during his time as mayor of Davao City (the third most populous metropolitan area in the Philippines with more than 1.6 million inhabitants), patrolling the streets on a motorcycle.

“In Davao I used to do it personally. Just to show to the guys [the police] that if I can do it, why can’t you,” Duterte said, as quoted by AFP.

He added that he would “go around in Davao with a motorcycle, with a big bike around, and I would just patrol the streets, looking for trouble also. I was really looking for a confrontation so I could kill.”

As for his parting shot at the UN’s employee and the overall organization, Duterte lashed out: “please shut up because your brain is lacking there,” he told Zeid.

“Go back to school. You United Nations, you do not know diplomacy. You do not know how to behave to be an employee of the United Nations” adding “You do not talk to me like that, you son of a bitch.”

And now, Trump seems to agree.

The post Duterte: “I Will Burn Down The United Nations” appeared first on crude-oil.top.

CIA Troll Food – 10 ways to spot a Russian Spy

The CIA is using an army of internet Trolls as a form of PsyOps in the information war that’s raging since the loss of their establishment candidate.  Here’s a pocket guide how to spot a *real* Russian spy (not the CIA trained ‘fake spies’ pretending to be Russian Spies’)

Now that Putin has officially communicated with Trump in typical elegant communique fashion (contrary to popular belief, Putin’s role in Russia is more of international statesman than domestic dictator), the anti-Russian propaganda machine is in overdrive, re-tasking all available resources for this one purpose: drive a wedge as deep as possible in the new power paradigm coming to DC by maxing out on the existing percentage of controlled zombie consumers that can be remotely manipulated via TV & internet media.  The coup failed, which should be a shame for the CIA considering the amount of successful coups that have been engineered in foreign countries, but now it’s time to maximize the ground taken, even if small, in the war for minds that has been established as a base foothold (they read Sun Tzu, too).  It’s time for the establishment to retreat into their bunkers and behind their defense lines; for soon they will lose their power in the richest most powerful country in the world.

Although Russia and America are 2 superpowers with much in common, 80 years of Soviet rule changed Russian culture and the gene pool more than any other part of the Caucasian world.  By the way, the ‘Caucasian’ race is named for the ‘Caucus’ mountains from which they came, which are in Russia.  The Russians made the only real successful social revolution against their Elite aristocratic overlords; the Romanovs.  Although it’s a lot less publicized than similar revolutions in France and other places, it was in fact the only such revolution in a major country that resulted in 80 years of real social change – for better or worse.  In France, the outcome of the French Revolution was the rise of Napoleon Bonaparte; in America – after a period of relative independence and freedom, America would once again be dominated by the oppressor class from which it fought to be free from.  And Russia seems to have the same fate now; after 80 years of something different, the rise of Capitalism and the oligarch class is leading Russia down a path not much different from America’s, just a few decades behind.

If you’re not aware of how the CIA is controlling the internet to manipulate the population, checkout a few reference articles:

Revealed: US spy operation that manipulates social media | Technology | The Guardian

CIA Agents To Troll Alternative Media Sites In Huge Propaganda Program – Your News Wire

Yes, There Are Paid Government Trolls On Social Media, Blogs, Forums And Websites » Alex Jones’ Infowars: There’s a war on for your mind!

Government Trolls Are Using “Psychology-Based Influence Techniques” On YouTube, Facebook And Twitter | Zero Hedge * BEST RECOMMENDED

For a pocket guide to make you a global political Genius, checkout Splitting Pennies for only $6.11 on Amazon Kindle.  If you just want to profit from people’s lack of understanding of how the world works, checkout Alpha Z Advisors Managed Accounts Program and Alternative Investment fund for QEPs.

Here’s 10 ways to spot a *real* Russian Spy in America:

1) Superior use of the English language, with a thick accent, failure to use articles such as ‘the’ and ‘a’ – such as ‘take shower’ instead of ‘going to take a shower.’  Russian Language is far more complex but more logical and efficient in use of letters, speech, and writing.  Russian natives who master English typically have a large vocabulary, and will use proper tenses and complex grammatical structures because they studied it, and will likely leave out slang such as ‘you know’ and ‘like.’  (Until of course, they live here for 10 years)

2) Never smiling.  Russians do not smile unless they are laughing at a joke, and maybe in some rare cases when something funny happens.  Even in this case, their dark sense of humor is something they enjoy on the inside.  It’s not polite to walk around Moscow smiling.  If you do, someone may call the police (as if you have gone mad).

3) Seems to be rude – never says ‘please’ or ‘thank you’ – Russians do not have a concept of why you should say ‘thank you’ to a stranger who just took $50 from you for your groceries.  How has this person really helped you or brightened your day?  Isn’t it their job?  Should you say ‘thank you for doing your job’ as if it’s a miracle?  

4) Does not wear shoes in his home, he has a foyer where when he enters his house takes off all coats, scarves, hats, shoes and other ‘outdoor’ wear and puts on fuzzy house slippers or just wears socks.  

5) Constantly pays with physical cash.  Although some Americans do this anyway who are not necessarily Russian – nearly ALL Russians use 100% physical Rubles for everything from paying rent, health insurance, doctors visits, buying a car, buying groceries, or investing.  The electronic economy hasn’t taken hold in Russia – and partly because they are ‘paranoid’ that if they put their money in a bank, the bank will seize it or bankrupt.  

6) Never will open a door for a stranger, or move out of the way if you are in his walking vector, in fact he may knock over any passersby like bowling pins if they are in the way; and certainly will never say ‘excuse me.’ 

7) Always well dressed, even to go grocery shopping – maybe keeps a pocket comb even if his hair is only 2 cm long.  Russians don’t have a concept of wearing sweat suits or pajamas to the grocery store.  When they go out even if just to run to the corner store for a milk.

8) Weary to use air conditioner.  In Russia very few buildings have A/C – in the summer months when it’s hot, it is still cool at night, when most open windows and enjoy a nice breeze.  Modern buildings of course have the conveniences of A/C but those who are older or who grew up in older buildings do not have A/C – only heat.  Therefore, they aren’t used to cranking up the A/C year round like the blue hairs in Sunny Florida.  If they are hot they are more likely to take a walk or open the windows.

9) Not likely to find Russians in paid public events unless they are formal.  Russia has a well-developed public system of parks and other free public use systems and they aren’t used to paying a few dollars to enter a public park, see Christmas lights, or $1 to view through binoculars along side the highway.  Paying $250 for theater tickets is different – they aren’t cheap people, they are just not used to being nickeled and dimed when outside their homes, because in Russia it’s all free.

10) Strange tippers.  In Russia they don’t use the ‘tipping’ system, if you eat in a café or bar you may leave your spare change for example, if the bill is $9.50 you may leave the additional $.50 – or if you have a few extra dollars you may leave it – or not.  The majority of cafes, restaurants, bars, and other establishments only expect tips from tourists.  And if a Russian does leave a tip, it’s likely to be very small (not 10%!!).

There you have it!  There are many cultural differences between USA and Russia, although there are too many similarities.  In this series of articles, we’re spreading the facts about Russia – the great unknown Bear.

Putin and Trump will certainly bring USA-Russia relations to a ‘qualitatively’ new level.


For a pocket guide to make you a global political Genius, checkout Splitting Pennies for only $6.11 on Amazon Kindle.  If you just want to profit from people’s lack of understanding of how the world works, checkout Alpha Z Advisors Managed Accounts Program and Alternative Investment fund for QEPs.

The post CIA Troll Food – 10 ways to spot a Russian Spy appeared first on crude-oil.top.

CIA Troll Food – 10 ways to spot a Russian Spy

The CIA is using an army of internet Trolls as a form of PsyOps in the information war that’s raging since the loss of their establishment candidate.  Here’s a pocket guide how to spot a *real* Russian spy (not the CIA trained ‘fake spies’ pretending to be Russian Spies’)

Now that Putin has officially communicated with Trump in typical elegant communique fashion (contrary to popular belief, Putin’s role in Russia is more of international statesman than domestic dictator), the anti-Russian propaganda machine is in overdrive, re-tasking all available resources for this one purpose: drive a wedge as deep as possible in the new power paradigm coming to DC by maxing out on the existing percentage of controlled zombie consumers that can be remotely manipulated via TV & internet media.  The coup failed, which should be a shame for the CIA considering the amount of successful coups that have been engineered in foreign countries, but now it’s time to maximize the ground taken, even if small, in the war for minds that has been established as a base foothold (they read Sun Tzu, too).  It’s time for the establishment to retreat into their bunkers and behind their defense lines; for soon they will lose their power in the richest most powerful country in the world.

Although Russia and America are 2 superpowers with much in common, 80 years of Soviet rule changed Russian culture and the gene pool more than any other part of the Caucasian world.  By the way, the ‘Caucasian’ race is named for the ‘Caucus’ mountains from which they came, which are in Russia.  The Russians made the only real successful social revolution against their Elite aristocratic overlords; the Romanovs.  Although it’s a lot less publicized than similar revolutions in France and other places, it was in fact the only such revolution in a major country that resulted in 80 years of real social change – for better or worse.  In France, the outcome of the French Revolution was the rise of Napoleon Bonaparte; in America – after a period of relative independence and freedom, America would once again be dominated by the oppressor class from which it fought to be free from.  And Russia seems to have the same fate now; after 80 years of something different, the rise of Capitalism and the oligarch class is leading Russia down a path not much different from America’s, just a few decades behind.

If you’re not aware of how the CIA is controlling the internet to manipulate the population, checkout a few reference articles:

Revealed: US spy operation that manipulates social media | Technology | The Guardian

CIA Agents To Troll Alternative Media Sites In Huge Propaganda Program – Your News Wire

Yes, There Are Paid Government Trolls On Social Media, Blogs, Forums And Websites » Alex Jones’ Infowars: There’s a war on for your mind!

Government Trolls Are Using “Psychology-Based Influence Techniques” On YouTube, Facebook And Twitter | Zero Hedge * BEST RECOMMENDED

For a pocket guide to make you a global political Genius, checkout Splitting Pennies for only $6.11 on Amazon Kindle.  If you just want to profit from people’s lack of understanding of how the world works, checkout Alpha Z Advisors Managed Accounts Program and Alternative Investment fund for QEPs.

Here’s 10 ways to spot a *real* Russian Spy in America:

1) Superior use of the English language, with a thick accent, failure to use articles such as ‘the’ and ‘a’ – such as ‘take shower’ instead of ‘going to take a shower.’  Russian Language is far more complex but more logical and efficient in use of letters, speech, and writing.  Russian natives who master English typically have a large vocabulary, and will use proper tenses and complex grammatical structures because they studied it, and will likely leave out slang such as ‘you know’ and ‘like.’  (Until of course, they live here for 10 years)

2) Never smiling.  Russians do not smile unless they are laughing at a joke, and maybe in some rare cases when something funny happens.  Even in this case, their dark sense of humor is something they enjoy on the inside.  It’s not polite to walk around Moscow smiling.  If you do, someone may call the police (as if you have gone mad).

3) Seems to be rude – never says ‘please’ or ‘thank you’ – Russians do not have a concept of why you should say ‘thank you’ to a stranger who just took $50 from you for your groceries.  How has this person really helped you or brightened your day?  Isn’t it their job?  Should you say ‘thank you for doing your job’ as if it’s a miracle?  

4) Does not wear shoes in his home, he has a foyer where when he enters his house takes off all coats, scarves, hats, shoes and other ‘outdoor’ wear and puts on fuzzy house slippers or just wears socks.  

5) Constantly pays with physical cash.  Although some Americans do this anyway who are not necessarily Russian – nearly ALL Russians use 100% physical Rubles for everything from paying rent, health insurance, doctors visits, buying a car, buying groceries, or investing.  The electronic economy hasn’t taken hold in Russia – and partly because they are ‘paranoid’ that if they put their money in a bank, the bank will seize it or bankrupt.  

6) Never will open a door for a stranger, or move out of the way if you are in his walking vector, in fact he may knock over any passersby like bowling pins if they are in the way; and certainly will never say ‘excuse me.’ 

7) Always well dressed, even to go grocery shopping – maybe keeps a pocket comb even if his hair is only 2 cm long.  Russians don’t have a concept of wearing sweat suits or pajamas to the grocery store.  When they go out even if just to run to the corner store for a milk.

8) Weary to use air conditioner.  In Russia very few buildings have A/C – in the summer months when it’s hot, it is still cool at night, when most open windows and enjoy a nice breeze.  Modern buildings of course have the conveniences of A/C but those who are older or who grew up in older buildings do not have A/C – only heat.  Therefore, they aren’t used to cranking up the A/C year round like the blue hairs in Sunny Florida.  If they are hot they are more likely to take a walk or open the windows.

9) Not likely to find Russians in paid public events unless they are formal.  Russia has a well-developed public system of parks and other free public use systems and they aren’t used to paying a few dollars to enter a public park, see Christmas lights, or $1 to view through binoculars along side the highway.  Paying $250 for theater tickets is different – they aren’t cheap people, they are just not used to being nickeled and dimed when outside their homes, because in Russia it’s all free.

10) Strange tippers.  In Russia they don’t use the ‘tipping’ system, if you eat in a café or bar you may leave your spare change for example, if the bill is $9.50 you may leave the additional $.50 – or if you have a few extra dollars you may leave it – or not.  The majority of cafes, restaurants, bars, and other establishments only expect tips from tourists.  And if a Russian does leave a tip, it’s likely to be very small (not 10%!!).

There you have it!  There are many cultural differences between USA and Russia, although there are too many similarities.  In this series of articles, we’re spreading the facts about Russia – the great unknown Bear.

Putin and Trump will certainly bring USA-Russia relations to a ‘qualitatively’ new level.


For a pocket guide to make you a global political Genius, checkout Splitting Pennies for only $6.11 on Amazon Kindle.  If you just want to profit from people’s lack of understanding of how the world works, checkout Alpha Z Advisors Managed Accounts Program and Alternative Investment fund for QEPs.

The post CIA Troll Food – 10 ways to spot a Russian Spy appeared first on crude-oil.top.

Trump ‘Triggers’ Social Media Over Democrat-Bashing Putin Tweet

President-elect Donald Trump ‘triggered’ the social media world into a frenzy Friday night with a tweet that praised Russian president Vladimir Putin’s criticism of Democrats. As The Hill reports, Putin on Friday deflected accusations of Russian interference in the U.S. election, saying at a press conference: “Democrats are losing on every front and looking for people to blame everywhere. They need to learn to lose with dignity.”

Later Friday, Trump piled on, lauding Putin and continuing his denial that Russia interfered in the election.

Vladimir Putin said today about Hillary and Dems: “In my opinion, it is humiliating. One must be able to lose with dignity.” So true!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 24, 2016

  Trump’s words drew widespread condemnation on Twitter,   from journalists, liberals, conservatives and those in the entertainment industry…

 

Mr. Pres-elect, is it necessary to cite as an authority on democratic norms a thug whose regime commits war crimes and murders journalists? https://t.co/aSmMyxvrLY

— Nicholas Kristof (@NickKristof) December 24, 2016

No puppet https://t.co/5mXR2s0Srh

— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) December 24, 2016

Just an FYI, Putin has all of his elections rigged. Like, actually rigged. https://t.co/YmqeSpHt78 https://t.co/tAWjoXXjAo

— Jordan Zakarin (@jordanzakarin) December 24, 2016

You’re tweeting Vladimir-freaking-Putin. The KGB master is coming to your defense and you’re proud of this? Have you no dignity whatsoever? https://t.co/aOf7GuoUtV

— John Aravosis (@aravosis) December 24, 2016

This is your leader America. Merry fucking Christmas. https://t.co/gUZzXshehM

— digby (@digby56) December 24, 2016

He isn’t even disguising it. The Republican Party has succeeded in bringing a madman to power. But once again, they will make excuses. https://t.co/lINQStMcHV

— Elliott Lusztig (@ezlusztig) December 24, 2016

Joining a Russian dictator in mocking an American is disgusting. https://t.co/9N3t5DV3kA

— Kristy Campbell (@kristymcampbell) December 24, 2016

What if Hillary had won in the Electoral College but lost the popular vote by 3 million? How would Trump and Trump Nation have reacted? https://t.co/1SleLbKuhC

— Jay Nordlinger (@jaynordlinger) December 24, 2016

Republican leaders must condemn @realDonaldTrump‘s alliance with Putin, a foreign adversary who is actively undermining our democracy. https://t.co/7q0OkzNF2T

— Evan McMullin (@Evan_McMullin) December 24, 2016

you use more exclamation points than a menu in a Guy Fieri restaurant https://t.co/iXfYzjLLAO

— Matt Oswalt (@MattOswaltVA) December 24, 2016

You empty-suit, empty-souled fuck. You’re quoting a man who poisons his political opponents, murders critical journos. No dignity for them. https://t.co/QnIGcMLVZX

— David Simon (@AoDespair) December 24, 2016

Truth hurts eh?

The post Trump ‘Triggers’ Social Media Over Democrat-Bashing Putin Tweet appeared first on crude-oil.top.

Nigeria: Boko Haram is crushed, forced out of last enclave

Author: 
MICHELLE FAUL | AP
Sun, 2016-12-25
ID: 
1482603018867105600

LAGOS, Nigeria: The Boko Haram extremist group has finally been crushed — driven from its last forest enclave with fighters on the run and no place to hide, Nigeria’s president declared Saturday.
His victorious statement came as the Daesh group, with which one faction of Boko Haram is allied, claimed a successful attack on an army barracks in northeast Nigeria’s Yobe state “killed and wounded many.” The communique on social media said the attack took place Thursday, the same day President Muhammadu Buhari said troops defeated Boko Haram in its Sambisa Forest stronghold in neighboring Borno state.
It was an indicator that despite Buhari’s announcement, Nigeria is unlikely to see an end soon to the deadly suicide bombings, village attacks and assaults on remote military outposts in northeastern Nigeria carried out by the country’s homegrown Islamic extremist group. Already, there are reports that the insurgents have been regrouping in Taraba and Bauchi states, south of their northeastern stronghold in Borno state, and taking advantage of a decades-old conflict in central Nigeria between mainly Muslim nomadic cattle herders and sedentary Christian farmers.
In a statement, Buhari commended Nigerian troops for “finally entering and crushing the remnants of the Boko Haram insurgents at Camp Zero,” which is located deep within the heart of Sambisa Forest.
He announced the “long-awaited and most gratifying news of the final crushing of Boko Haram terrorists in their last enclave” and declared “the terrorists are on the run, and no longer have a place to hide.”
The Sambisa Forest was where Boko Haram was believed to be holding some of more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped in April 2014 from a school in the town of Chibok — a mass abduction that brought the Islamic extremists world attention and sparked an international social media campaign #BringBackOurGirls.
“Further efforts should be intensified to locate and free our remaining Chibok girls still in captivity. May God be with them,” Buhari said.
Nigerian troops have freed thousands of Boko Haram captives this year, but none of the Chibok girls among 276 seized from a government boarding school.
Dozens of girls escaped within hours of their abduction. In October, 21 Chibok girls were freed through negotiations between the government and Boko Haram, brokered by the Swiss government and the International Red Cross. In May, one Chibok girl escaped on her own. Some 197 remain missing.
The freed girls have indicated that several others have died in captivity from things like malaria and a snake bite.
Boko Haram’s seven-year Islamic uprising has killed more than 20,000 people, spread across Nigeria’s borders, driven some 2.3 million people from their homes and created a massive humanitarian crisis. The UN has warned that 5.1 million people are in danger of starving in northeast Nigeria, including in areas too dangerous to reach because of Boko Haram ambushes.

Main category: 

After Berlin attack, Europe weighs freedom against security

Author: 
ANGELA CHARLTON | AP
Sun, 2016-12-25
ID: 
1482605668747272300

PARIS: Europe’s open borders symbolize liberty and forward thinking for many residents — but they increasingly look like the continent’s Achilles’ heel.
Europe’s No. 1 terrorism suspect crossed at least two borders this week despite an international manhunt, and was felled only by chance, in a random ID check in a Milan suburb. The bungled chase for Berlin market attack suspect Anis Amri is just one example of recent cross-border security failures that are emboldening nationalists fed up with European unity. Extremist violence, they argue, is too high a price to pay for the freedom to travel easily.
Defenders of the EU’s border-free zone say the security failures show the need for more cooperation among European governments, even shared militaries — not new barriers. Hidebound habits of hoarding intelligence within centuries-old borders, they contend, are part of the problem.
But their arguments are easily drowned out by the likes of far-right leader Marine Le Pen, who is hoping to win France’s presidency in May.
“The myth of total free movement in Europe, which my rivals are clinging to in this presidential election, should be definitively buried. Our security depends on it,” she said in a statement Friday, calling Europe’s free-travel zone a “total security catastrophe.”
That poses a dilemma for European Union devotees like German Chancellor Angela Merkel, facing a re-election battle next year.
Merkel’s defense of the EU, and the welcoming hand she extended to Syrian war refugees, were once seen as assets, signs of her moral authority. Today, with anti-immigrant, anti-establishment sentiment rising across Europe, they are threatening to become liabilities.
Millions of people cross borders in the 26-country Schengen travel zone every day, thanks to a 31-year-old system encompassing nearly 400 million people that has dramatically boosted trade and job prospects across the world’s largest collective economy.
It’s a pillar of a system designed to prevent new world wars — a system that’s under growing strain. While EU countries debated over how to manage an influx of migrants last year, eastern nations rebuilt fences and exposed EU weaknesses.
The German far right is insisting on closing the country’s borders. Merkel’s conservatives are suggesting “transit zones” to hold migrants at the borders while their identities are confirmed, and making it easier to hold people in pre-deportation detention.
Berlin truck attacker Amri is a painful example of how Islamic extremists have used Europe’s open borders to attack the principles of tolerance they’re meant to epitomize.
After migrating illegally from Tunisia in 2011, he was imprisoned for burning down a migrant detention center in Italy. When freed, attempts to deport him to Tunisia failed for bureaucratic reasons. He subsequently traveled to Switzerland and then Germany, where he apparently fell under the influence of a radical network accused of recruiting for the Daesh group.
Although Germany rejected his asylum application last summer and flagged him as a potential terror threat, authorities patiently waited for Tunisia to produce the required paperwork before deporting him.
And just as the deportation was being finalized Monday, Amri is believed to have hijacked a truck and rammed it into holiday crowds at a Berlin Christmas market, killing 12 and wounding dozens.
He evaded an international manhunt for more than three days, slipping apparently into France — possibly with a pistol in his pocket — and then Italy before stumbling into a standard ID check in suburban Milan, where he died in a police shootout.
Germany, France and Italy have failed to explain how he escaped the dragnet.
“Movement from one country to another in Europe is easy, especially for someone like Anis Amri, who had lived in Europe for several years” and knew which borders were easier to cross, said Tunisian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bouraoui Limam.
France is especially embarrassed.
It’s been under high security as part of a state of emergency since last year. It’s acutely aware of the risks of violence on trains, after American passengers thwarted an attack on a Paris-Amsterdam train in 2015.
Yet French President Francois Hollande visited the Alpine town of Chambery on the same day that Amri is believed to have passed through its train station en route to Italy, unnoticed by border guards or the president’s security detail.
The next morning, as Italian police were identifying Amri’s body, France’s interior minister visited a Paris train station to talk about the vigorous transport security in place for the holidays.
France’s far right and the conservative opposition have assailed the Socialist government as lax.
“How could this person enter in Europe without being monitored? How could we let him settle in Europe?” said Eric Ciotti, lawmaker for the Republicans.
What’s worse, it’s not the first time.
Last year, hours after Daesh extremists killed 130 people at multiple targets in Paris, key suspect Salah Abdeslam fled to Belgium despite increased checks on both the French and Belgian borders. It took authorities four months to find him. Further, Abdeslam, a French national, had traveled through the Italian port of Bari on a roundtrip journey to Greece in August, months before the attack.
And in 2014, Mehdi Nemmouche allegedly killed four people at the Jewish Museum in Brussels, then crossed into France and traveled to the Mediterranean city of Marseille before being picked up in a police check.
Security and migration will be central issues in elections in the coming year in Germany, France and the Netherlands — all founding nations of the EU. And related fears could be key to fueling opposition calls for an early election in Italy after its recent political crisis.
The leader of Italy’s anti-migrant Northern League, Matteo Salvini, called Saturday for closing and reinforcing Europe’s borders after the latest terror attack.
“I don’t want another two or three massacres before Europe wakes up,” Salvini said.
A candidate for France’s left-wing primary next month, Vincent Peillon, pleaded for joint European rules on borders, defense and intelligence.
“It’s all of Europe that is being attacked,” he said.
Le Pen’s far-right National Front party wants to retrench rather than reach out, to “give France back full control over its sovereignty.”
As Europeans head home for the holidays, many crossing multiple borders on the way without showing a single passport or changing any currency, people are asking themselves: Is it all worth it?
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Geir Moulson in Berlin and Colleen Barry in Milan, Italy, contributed.

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