Disturbing Video Catches Cop Beating His Girlfriend in a Bar—No Charges, Dept Let Him Retire

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Lafayette, LA — A woman beating cop was caught in the act thanks to a bar’s surveillance camera. However, thanks to a corrupt system that protects crooked and violent police officers, the high-ranking officers was allowed to quietly retire and will likely face no consequences.

This week, a video was uploaded to youtube by an anonymous source which showed Lafayette Police Department Captain Dwayne Prejean striking a woman in the head in a local bar. Conveniently for the police department, however, the video was removed by Youtube. However, it survived and was reported on by local media.

The department likely knew about the existence of the video well before it was reported on by local media. However, they chose to remain silent until the report aired.

This week, the department finally announced that they were conducting an internal investigation into one of their officers—who they conveniently refused to name. However, multiple sources identified the person striking the woman in the video as Prejean.

On Friday, LPD spokesman Karl Ratcliff said the officer was allowed to retire after he was given a brief paid vacation.

The disturbing video was taken on New Year’s Eve night in a local bar. It shows the officer, who was entirely unprovoked, strike a woman in her forehead. The woman then hit him back before storming out of the bar.

If a police officer was willing to hit a woman in public space like a bar, one can only imagine what he would do in private.

Predictably enough, this is not the first time Prejean has been in the news. In fact, according to KLFY, this woman abusing cop has a history of corruption and a history of covering it up.

In 2016, the officer was transferred from his post as Lafayette metro narcotics captain due to a circumstance involving a 15th Judicial District assistant attorney who was terminated over the matter.

Neither the district attorney’s office or the police department sought further disciplinary action, however, the nature of the relationship between the two individuals was never disclosed.

-In 2014, Prejean was named in a federal lawsuit filed by 15 former police officers alleging corruption and retaliation within the department.

One plaintiff, who was fired from the LPD in 2013, claimed former Lafayette Police Chief Jim Craft terminated him for making allegations that Prejean was guilty of drinking and driving.

According to administrative documents obtained by The Daily Advertiser in 2013, the formal complaint concerning Prejean’s alleged impaired driving reportedly included video surveillance.

Because the officer who made the complaint would not reveal the identity of whoever provided him the video, which Craft claimed “to have possibly (been) edited”, the department said it could not prove that Prejean was under the influence.

Craft terminated the officer who made the allegations against Prejean for “violating three general orders of conduct”, according The Advertiser.

The suit and its appeal were both dismissed.

Now, this abusive and corrupt cop will likely get to keep his pension and retire on the taxpayers’ dime.

As TFTP has reported, police in the US beat their wives and girlfriends at nearly double the national average. And, a report by a government-appointed watchdog group shows that most of them do so with seeming impunity.

A study conducted by the Domestic Violence Task Force called Domestic Violence in the Los Angeles Police Department: How Well Does the Los Angeles Police Department Police Its Own? revealed that performance evaluations of cops with a history of domestic violence are largely unaffected. The study of the LAPD examined 91 cases in which an allegation of domestic violence was sustained against an officer.

  • Over three-fourths of the time, this sustained allegation was not mentioned in the officer’s performance evaluation.
  • Twenty-six of these officers (29%) were promoted, including six who were promoted within two years of the incident.

The report concluded that “employees with sustained allegations were neither barred from moving to desired positions nor transferred out of assignments that were inconsistent with the sustained allegation.”

Sadly, it is estimated that many of the abused women never come forward as they know the likely result — which is getting shamed by the department for reporting it and potentially more abuse.

Diane Wetendorf, a specialist on police abuse, points out the most common fears when reporting police domestic abuse in her handbook:

If your abuser is an officer of the law, you may be afraid to:

  • Call the police — He is the police.
  • Go to a shelter — He knows where the shelters are located.
  • Have him arrested — Responding officers may invoke the code of silence.
  • Take him to court — It’s your word against that of an officer, and he knows the system.
  • Drop the charges — You could lose any future credibility and protection.
  • Seek a conviction — He will probably lose his job and retaliate against you.

These fears can make someone feel incredibly trapped and feel like there is no way out.

If you or someone you know is a victim of this type of abuse we encourage you to no longer remain silent. As long as people go unpunished for their abuse, they will continue their abuse.

Film it, record it, expose it in any manner you can. Tell us your story and we will expose these abusive jackboots for the cowards they are.

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/watch-woman-abusing-cop-caught-video-smashing-girl-head/

Dirty Cop Busted Running Drugs, Protecting Drug Lords & Selling Police Beatdowns

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Los Angeles, CA — Kenneth Collins, a 15-year veteran of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, was arrested this week in an undercover FBI sting operation. Collins, along with three alleged accomplices were arrested and charged this week with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances.

It turns out the drug traffickers were actually FBI agents who informed Collins they would be transporting nearly 45 pounds of cocaine and more than 13 pounds of methamphetamine. Arrested with Collins are David Easter, a 51-year-old Hyde Park resident; Grant Valencia, a 34-year-old from Pomona; and Maurice Desi Font, 56, of South Los Angeles.

In the past, Collins used to mentor ex-convicts through a program called “Emerging Leaders.” Now the career cop is forced to confront the possibility he, too, may spend time behind bars.

According to KTLA, Collins had been rumored to be a dirty cop, often accepting bribes in exchange for protecting drug dealers and their operations. The FBI investigated, set their trap, and caught their badge-wearing criminal who was believed to be the “ring-leader.”

He apparently bragged to the undercover FBI agents he could also arrange beat-downs in exchange for cash as well.

On Tuesday, Sheriff Jim McDonnell announced the arrest and stated Collins would be suspended without pay pending the outcome of the investigation. In a separate statement, the Sheriff’s Department called on the public to not allow the arrest to overshadow their belief in the department as a whole. The statement reads in part, “As outraged as the public may be over these accusations, I guarantee you the men and women of the Sheriff’s Department are twice as upset.” — Except for the ones who were in on the scam…

Collins believed he would be getting $250,000 in exchange for providing a police escort for the transport vehicles. He even bragged according to the criminal complaint that “he has transported even greater quantities of controlled substances in the past and is trusted by large-scale drug traffickers.”

It’s unclear whether or not the braggadocious officer was actually involved in security/trafficking operations throughout the state of California but he claims to have been providing security for drug running in LA, San Bernardino, as well as Lancaster.

Equally disturbing to some may be Collins’ claim the other men were also law enforcement officers. Valencia is a convicted felon, Easter is not, but Font’s affiliation with law enforcement remains unclear.

Collins was first contacted in August by an undercover agent posing as a wealthy investor interested in setting up an illegal grow house. Collins offered to facilitate the sale of $4 million worth of marijuana each month. Collins reportedly told the undercover agents:

by virtue of being a law enforcement officer, (he) was better equipped and adept at thwarting the detection of law enforcement…’We’re cops…All of our transports make it through’

Collins took cash from the undercover agents for various odd jobs. In addition to the $5000 good faith money they gave him for security protection, they also paid him $2000 to locate a man with which the undercover said he was having “issues.” That money was likely given to Collins to get him to use the police department’s computer system for personal gain.

United States Attorney Nicola T. Hanna described the arrests as an effort to, “root out corruption, particularly when it involves sworn law enforcement officers.” Hanna said in a statement, “Deputy Collins sold his badge to assist an individual he thought was a drug trafficker.”

The successful sting operation to arrest a dirty cop comes amid several high-profile cases involving law enforcement officers. In May, ex-LA County Sheriff Lee Baca was sentenced to three years in jail for interfering with an FBI investigation involving alleged jail abuses of inmates by corrections officers. And in June, LA police officer Robert Cain was arrested and charged with multiple felonies including having sex with a teenage member of the police explorers program.

Hopefully, the FBI won’t stop with Collins but will also turn its attention to sex trafficking of minors by police officers. As TFTP reported Jasmine Abuslin was trafficked throughout at least seven police departments in the Bay Area. Along with her lawyers, she has successfully sued and won settlements and is taking down those departments one by one. The FBI should be bringing charges against those officers, but to date, no officer has been criminally charged for having sex with Abuslin.

 

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/dirty-la-cop-arrested-fbi-sting-operation-provided-protection-drug-traffickers/

Facebook & Google Promise Congress They’ll Brainwash You With Their Own ‘Counter Propaganda’

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Tech giants Facebook, Google and Twitter testified to Congress this week about extremist content appearing on their platforms. In an odd admission, the companies promised to suppress extremist ideologies online by distributing their own “counter-propaganda.”

Monika Bickert, Facebook’s head of global policy management told Congress on Wednesday that the site plans to take matters into their own hands.

“We believe that a key part of combating extremism is preventing recruitment by disrupting the underlying ideologies that drive people to commit acts of violence. That’s why we support a variety of counterspeech efforts,” Bickert said.

Meanwhile, representatives from Google admitted during the testimony that they use an algorithm to send anti-terror messages to people who they suspect of viewing seditious material. The use of this algorithm is known as the “Redirect Method,” and was developed by a team at Google called the Jigsaw research group

Juniper Downs, YouTube’s head of public policy, also said that the company has plans to implement censorship on videos that they deem to be extremist.

“Our advances in machine learning let us now take down nearly 70% of violent extremism content within 8 hours of upload and nearly half of it in 2 hours,” Downs bragged during the testimony.

Meanwhile, Twitter has set up over 100 “training events” all over the world including at elite locations like the White House or United Nations.

Twitter’s Carlos Monje Jr., director of public policy and philanthropy in the U.S. and Canada, said the company has participated in more than 100 training events since 2015 on countering extremist content.

While countering terrorism is certainly a noble cause, as TFTP has reported at length, these tactics are also used to snub out peaceful views that simply challenge the status quo.

In recent months, social media organizations have come under fire for the negative impact that they have had on human interactions and society at large. These groups have taken the blame for the recent divisions that have been tearing friends and family apart along political lines, and that blame is well placed for the most part.

Much of this problem has been created by the algorithms that curate and select the content that we see online, not the platforms themselves. These problems did not exist when social media had free-flowing timelines that were unrestricted and in chronological order. Unfortunately, these companies do not want to give up the control they have on the content that you consume, so they are doubling down on their algorithms and will undoubtedly make the problems that they seek to solve much worse.

As we also reported this week, YouTube alienated a large portion of its audience this week by demonetizing all of their smaller content creators. In an email sent out to millions of independent artists, musicians, and journalists, YouTube informed them that they were no longer eligible for advertising revenue on the site because their channels were simply not big enough. The site now requires a minimum of 1000 subscribers and 4000 hours of viewed content, automatically disqualifying a large chunk of their creators from monetization.

These companies have become so far removed from their customers that they are no longer concerned with delivering a product that people actually want, which is the inevitable outcome of monopolies.

These organizations may have a stranglehold on the social media market for now, but it is only a matter of time before more free platforms are widely adopted. For example, a blockchain social media website called Steemit has been growing in popularity by the day. On that site, users get paid in cryptocurrency for posting, commenting and even “liking” other posts. You can find The Free Thought Project on Steemit @tftproject.

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/tech-industry-tells-congress-they-are-using-counter-propaganda-to-fight-terror/

WATCH: Cop Turns Body Cam Away as Fellow Cop Starts Beating Handcuffed Man’s Face

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Newly released body camera footage is giving insight into the incident that led to a police officer being accused of using excessive force for beating a handcuffed man while his fellow officers turned away—with one of them even moving his Body Cam so that it would not capture the assault.

Police in Louisville, Indiana, located a car that they claimed was reported stolen around 3 a.m. on Sunday, and when they attempted to pull it over, driver Ray Maurice Bard, 36, led them on a chase that ended when he crashed into a concrete garage, according to a report from the Louisville Courier-Journal.

Bard then fled the scene. He jumped over a fence and ran through a backyard, and when police caught up to him, they Tased him and put him in handcuffs. The report noted that when searching the suspect, officers found “a plastic bag filled with a variety of narcotics including seven grams of methamphetamine, four grams of heroin and four grams of cocaine, among others.”

The footage from the body camera worn by one of the officers, which was recently released, is notable because it shows the officers’ attitudes during the incident. The officer wearing the body camera is joking, chuckling and laughing maniacally throughout the video, showing that he knew Bard was not a dangerous suspect.

“It’s the police! It’s the police,” the officer joked, telling someone who appears to be a nearby homeowner, “Yeah, man, he ran through your fence,” before laughing again.

The officer continued to laugh and joke as he helped another officer lead the handcuffed suspect around the side of the house, to the patrol cars. “What’s the matter?” the officer questioned when the suspect groaned in pain.

“Ta-Da!” The officer exclaimed when they brought Bard to the area where the car he was driving had crashed and other officers were waiting. Bard then tried to run from officers again, but he slipped on a patch of ice and fell.

The officer wearing the body cam continued to laugh maniacally as he watched the suspect fall, and other officers pounce on him and Tase him once again. However, the officer’s actions are notable because instead of physically assisting his colleagues, he stood guard and angled his torso so that his body camera would not capture the scene as officers pounced on Bard, and he cried out in pain.

Oh, why you do it to me?” Bard asked the officers after he was Tased a second time.

“Why did you run again?” an officer responded.

“You hurt my arm!” Bard shouted at the officers who tackled him.

“Well, stand up!” an officer replied.

“I can’t,” Bard said.

When Bard claimed he was unable to stand, the officers proceeded to drag him by his handcuffed arms back to the patrol car. As the officer wearing the body camera clearly tries to keep himself from filming the entirety of the scene, one of the officers strikes Bard across the face with his forearm.

Videotape this shit,” Bard is heard yelling, as he groaned in pain.

While there were multiple officers involved in the arrest, and it is unclear what type of conduct was used when Bard was on the ground, Sgt. Jason Tackett is now under investigation for striking Bard when he appeared to be complying with the officers and was not resisting arrest.

The Courier-Journal noted that Tackett claimed he “believed Mr. Bard was going to attempt to flee again on foot and I struck Mr. Bard to the right side of his head to prevent his escape, again.”

Given the officer’s excuse, it should be noted that at the time he hit Bard, the man was on his knees, with his handcuffed hands raised behind him, surrounded by multiple officers, and it did not appear from the video that he was making any attempt to flee the scene.

WDRB reported that after the incident, Bard was in need of medical care, and was taken to the hospital. He is now facing charges of possession of controlled substances, resisting arrest, criminal recklessness and reckless driving.

Tackett is a 12-year veteran of the Clarksville Police, and he has been placed on paid administrative leave, according to the report. In other words, Tackett’s decision to physically strike a suspect has resulted in a taxpayer-funded vacation.

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/cop-turns-body-cam-away-fellow-cop-starts-beating-handcuffed-mans-face/

WATCH: Congressman Says He Has ‘Credible Evidence’ ‘Terrorists’ Involved in Vegas Massacre

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The Vegas massacre, which is now being referred to as 1 October, has only gotten stranger as things progress. As TFTP reported on Thursday, the police have just entirely contradicted themselves and released information that there are multiple suspects in the shooting. Adding even more mystery to the already muddy waters of this tragedy, however, on Thursday, Republican lawmaker Scott Perry (R-PA) told reporter Tucker Carlson he has evidence ISIS may be involved in the deadly attack.

During the interview, Perry said that he was recently given credible evidence to suggest that Islamic State forces infiltrated the southern US border and were somehow involved in this incident.

“Recently I’ve been made aware of what I believe to be credible evidence regarding potential terrorist infiltration through the southern border regarding this incident… Twice before the attack ISIS warned the United States they would attack Las Vegas. In June and August. And then after the attack claimed responsibility four times… Something’s not adding up… I’m just telling you I have received what I feel to be and believe to be credible evidence of a possible terrorist nexus…”

As TFTP noted in October, the day after the shooting, the Islamic State immediately claimed responsibility for the violence.

According to the Independent:

A statement published by the group’s Amaq propaganda agency claimed the attacker was a “soldier of the Islamic State”.

“The Las Vegas attacker is a soldier of the Islamic State in response to calls to target coalition countries,” it said.

In a second statement, Isis claimed the gunman “converted to Islam several months ago”.

The wording of the release is similar to other attacks that have been inspired, rather than directed, by Isis.

The claim, which cannot be independently verified, came days after Isis released a speech purporting to be from the group’s leader.

Adding to the credibility of the ISIS claim, the group released a propaganda video last year, calling for lone wolf attackers—and featuring footage of the Las Vegas Strip, that they took in 2015.

The 44-minute long video called on its supporters to conduct attacks with any weapons they could find. It also featured footage of New York City and Washington D.C.

As TFTP reported in November, the predictions of attacks in New York also took place.

The video’s release prompted police in Las Vegas to go on high alert. This alert was still ongoing when the shooting took place.

As Newsweek reported, the FBI’s Las Vegas field office told Fox News in a statement following the video’s publication that it was working with “international law enforcement, intelligence, and security services agencies to share information and intelligence.”

A spokesperson for the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said: “We are always concerned when Las Vegas is mentioned by groups or individuals who subscribe to the idea of committing violence to further their cause.

“Our city has been mentioned in similar videos and publications but this most recent video should serve as a reminder to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious activity.”

Naturally, this claim by ISIS could very well be lies and propaganda as an attempt to sew discord as they use this senseless violence to their advantage. However, when an actual Congressman comes forward, it may be time to pay attention.

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/vegas-massacre-congressman-isis/

House GOPers Say A Secret Memo Could End The Trump-Russia Probe. Their Staff Wrote It.

Is there actually a new bombshell in the report? It’s possible. But the motives and track records of the Republican lawmakers behind the media blitz surrounding the memo suggest there may be less to it than they claim.

Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), who chairs the committee that cooked up the document, has been the public face of the GOP push to undermine the Mueller probe. Last year, Nunes was involved in an embarrassing episode in which he briefed President Trump on information he received from a source he wouldn’t name. It later turned out he’d met that person on White House grounds.

Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) ― who previously called on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to resign (which would allow Trump to replace him with an official who could shut down the Mueller probe) ― said the memo was “absolutely shocking.” But Meadows thinks the entire Russia probe is manufactured hysteria.

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), who said the memo “is so alarming the American people have to see” it, has previously called for a new special counsel to investigate Mueller’s special counsel team.

Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.), who said he was shaking his head when he read the memo and that the “American people deserve the truth,” benefited politicallyfrom documents the Russians hacked, and pushed a measure that would kill the Mueller probe.

Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) ― who has called for reining in the Mueller probe by gutting its financing, and recently went pheasant hunting with Donald Trump Jr. ― said he was sickened by the memo and that it was “worse than Watergate.” He thinks the FBI was part of the #NeverTrump movement and wanted Clinton elected.

If the memo does eventually go public, it won’t end well for Republicans, Susan Hennessey, the executive editor of the legal commentary site Lawfare, argued Friday. “After causing completely unnecessary chaos today, this memo will be released in some redacted [form] in a few weeks and prove to be an utter embarrassment to Nunes personally, the [House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence] majority, and frankly to US House of Representatives,” Hennessey predicted.

Some conservatives have urged caution, worrying that Republicans are overhyping a secret document. Republicans “should not oversell” the report, conservative commentator Hugh Hewitt wrote. Over at the conservative blog Hot Air, Ed Morrissey said it felt like a “set-up for a let-down.” He argued the memo should be released, but warned conservatives to “not go all-in on it until we have a chance to see it for ourselves. In the meantime, remember that most things that seem too good to be true usually are.”

Rep. Matt Gaetz, a 35-year-old Republican freshman from Florida who recently flew on Air Force One with Trump and is friends with Roger Stone, is one of the believers. Gaetz has called for Mueller to be fired and said on “Hannity” on Thursday that officials might wind up in jail over what he saw in the memo.

HuffPost ran into Gaetz on Capitol Hill on Thursday evening, just a few hours after the congressman appeared on the Fox Business channel above the chyron “I JUST READ A 4-PAGE MEMO THAT THREATENS DEMOCRACY TO ITS CORE.”

“I believe that the contents of that memo need to be made available to the public immediately, and that that is a critical concern in kind of all of the Mueller, Russia, Trump discourse,” Gaetz told HuffPost of the memo, which he said “kind of aggregates” intelligence data.

In the interview with HuffPost, Gaetz ran into a common problem for Republicans who suggest the FBI was too rough on Trump but went too easy on Clinton during the 2016 campaign: the indisputable fact that the FBI’s actions then harmed Clinton. Comey’s conduct during the Clinton investigation was even the underlying justification the Trump administration provided last spring to explain Trump firing Comey. If people in the FBI and the so-called “deep state” were trying to get Clinton elected president, then frankly, they did a terrible job of it.

Surely Gaetz could concede the FBI’s actions ahead of the 2016 election were much more damaging to the Clinton campaign than they were to Trump? “I wouldn’t agree with that characterization,” he replied.

Under Gaetz’s theory, the FBI was hellbent on leaking information to the press to stop Trump from being elected. Gaetz told HuffPost that texts between FBI employees Peter Strzok and Lisa Page showed they were “talking about a plan to strategically leak information to embarrass Trump.” As HuffPost recently explained, a deeply flawed story by John Solomon of The Hill has left a lot of people with the inaccurate impression that the text messages show the FBI officials were leaking information to hurt Trump. That’s what Gaetz believes.

“That was explicit in their communications to each other,“ Gaetz claimed.

“How so?” HuffPost asked. Here’s how the conversation went from there:

Gaetz: Well, when they talked about the, um, I think it was the Wall Street Journal article, and they were talking about, oh, was it behind a paywall and did it contain the information that ―

HuffPost: What Wall Street Journal story was that, that was negative against Trump?

Gaetz: Uh, again it’s referenced in their communications back and forth, this was I think in October.

HuffPost: Mhmm. But do you know what story it was?

Gaetz: Yeah, it was all about the contents of the dossier.

HuffPost: The Wall Street Journal story on the 24th was about the contents of the dossier? The dossier wasn’t released until ―

Gaetz: No, it might not have been the one of the 24th. It was the communication that was referenced in the Page-Strzok text messages.

HuffPost: No, I know the one you’re talking about, you said the Wall Street Journal story. I just think the Wall Street Journal story that they were talking about, if you look at it in context, they were talking about a story that was actually negative about the FBI and to Hillary Clinton. It was the story about the then-Deputy Attorney General McCabe who was basically being accused of ― I think you’ll probably recall this [from] the time …

Gaetz: Mhmm.

HuffPost: … was basically being accused, because his wife had received money, so that was what the story was about.

Gaetz: No, yeah, but I think there was other stuff that was included within that ―

HuffPost: Like what?

Gaetz: Well I don’t have it in front of me.

Gaetz’s theory ― that the FBI provided information for an Oct. 24, 2016, Wall Street Journal story on the Trump dossier ― doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, chiefly because no such story exists. The first story to reference the “dossier” was published by Mother Jones on Oct. 31, 2016, a full week after Strzok-Page exchanged texts about a Wall Street Journal article. The Mother Jones story only came out after Comey sent a letter about the Clinton investigation on Oct. 28 that set off a media frenzy Clinton has partially blamed for her loss. 

But the secret GOP memo gave Gaetz a convenient pivot point: the suggestion that there’s something, a bombshell, that he can’t reveal publicly. And it totally supports the theory he’s been pushing this whole time.

“I can say that if this memo become available to the public, many of the concerns that have been raised by members of the Judiciary Committee will be highlighted,” Gaetz said. 

Later on Friday, all nine Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee issued a statement calling the memo a “misleading set of talking points attacking the FBI.” Since the documents that the GOP-prepared memo cites are highly classified, the Democrats said, they will not be made public and it will become “impossible for the few Members who have seen the documents to explain the flaws and misstatements contained within the talking points” without disclosing sources and methods. 

“This is by design,” they said. “Not surprisingly, the GOP campaign to attack the FBI now has been joined by the same forces that made common cause during the Trump campaign — Wikileaks, Julian Assange and a multitude of online Russian bots are now involved in promoting this effort. It should be seen for what it so plainly is: yet another desperate and flailing attempt to undermine Special Counsel Mueller and the FBI, regardless of the profound damage it does to our democratic institutions and national security agencies.”

Ryan Reilly is HuffPost’s senior justice reporter, covering criminal justice, federal law enforcement and legal affairs. Have a tip? Reach him at ryan.reilly@huffpost.com or on Signal at 202-527-9261.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

Source Article from https://www.yahoo.com/news/house-gopers-secret-memo-could-011414007.html

Re: ‘What happened in Jerusalem will spread to Mecca,’ says Father Musallam

A member of the Christian-Islamic Committee in support of Jerusalem and the Holy Places, Father Manuel Musallam, has warned that what has happened in Jerusalem will spread to Mecca.

Speaking to Al Jazeera, Father Musallam has also warned that what happened in the holy city of Jerusalem will lead to a religious war, because Al-Aqsa Mosque will eventually fall down due to all the excavations Israel carries out underneath it.

“We call on the world to stop the religious expansion of Israel. We reject religious war, but if the war was imposed on us, we as Christians will stand with our Muslim brothers to resist this Zionist-Christian fundamentalist attack against Jerusalem and the holy Al-Aqsa Mosque.”

He called on Muslim countries to provide the Palestinians with weapons to resist this attack.

Read: UN General Assembly votes to condemn Trump’s Jerusalem recognition

He has also described the decision by US President Donald Trump to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel as “a war against Palestine and its people and Jerusalem directly” adding that Trump’s decision is a grave mistake.

“There is a missing link between the Palestinian people and their leadership,” he added. “The leadership is in one world and the people are in another world.”

He called on the Palestinian people to order the Palestinian factions to unite and adopt a new strategy based on the legitimate right of resistance to remove the occupation.

“Describing Jerusalem as Muslim or Christian is incorrect. We as Palestinians want Jerusalem to be Arab because it is Arab,” he added.



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20171222-what-happened-in-jerusalem-will-spread-to-mecca-says-father-musallam/#comment-3717317012

Re: ‘What happened in Jerusalem will spread to Mecca,’ says Father Musallam

A member of the Christian-Islamic Committee in support of Jerusalem and the Holy Places, Father Manuel Musallam, has warned that what has happened in Jerusalem will spread to Mecca.

Speaking to Al Jazeera, Father Musallam has also warned that what happened in the holy city of Jerusalem will lead to a religious war, because Al-Aqsa Mosque will eventually fall down due to all the excavations Israel carries out underneath it.

“We call on the world to stop the religious expansion of Israel. We reject religious war, but if the war was imposed on us, we as Christians will stand with our Muslim brothers to resist this Zionist-Christian fundamentalist attack against Jerusalem and the holy Al-Aqsa Mosque.”

He called on Muslim countries to provide the Palestinians with weapons to resist this attack.

Read: UN General Assembly votes to condemn Trump’s Jerusalem recognition

He has also described the decision by US President Donald Trump to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel as “a war against Palestine and its people and Jerusalem directly” adding that Trump’s decision is a grave mistake.

“There is a missing link between the Palestinian people and their leadership,” he added. “The leadership is in one world and the people are in another world.”

He called on the Palestinian people to order the Palestinian factions to unite and adopt a new strategy based on the legitimate right of resistance to remove the occupation.

“Describing Jerusalem as Muslim or Christian is incorrect. We as Palestinians want Jerusalem to be Arab because it is Arab,” he added.



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20171222-what-happened-in-jerusalem-will-spread-to-mecca-says-father-musallam/#comment-3717314823

Re: Trump & Palestine: One year on

Before Donald Trump’s inauguration, exactly a year ago, it was hard to say – as with so many other policy areas – exactly what approach his administration would take to Israel and the Palestinians. So, one year on, what can conclusions can we draw – and what impact has a Trump administration had?

Trump’s first year is to some extent bookended by two key moments. The first, last February, saw Trump express ambivalence about the two-state solution, in remarks he made alongside Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, during the latter’s visit to Washington.

In December, meanwhile, Trump made international headlines with his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and declared intent of relocating the US embassy from Tel Aviv. The shift in US policy prompted widespread protests by Palestinians, violently repressed by Israeli occupation forces.

Trump has appointed officials to sensitive positions who are all, to varying degrees, long-standing supporters of Israel. Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt have been responsible for formulating a so-called ‘peace plan’ whose details remain sketchy. Greenblatt has gained plaudits from some think-tank experts, but his main ‘achievement’ has simply been to visit the region and listen to Israeli and Palestinian officials. The Trump-appointed ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, meanwhile, is a well-known enthusiast of illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank.

It’s true that the first year of the Trump administration hasn’t meant total carte blanche for Netanyahu’s coalition of right-wing nationalists and open rejectionists of Palestinian statehood. But those advocating for partial, or total, annexation of the West Bank have certainly been boosted by a White House whose approach to date has been characterised by a combination of disinterest, an amplification of long-standing Israeli talking points – such as attacking so-called Palestinian ‘incitement’ and the role of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees – as well as the promotion of tokenistic, economics-focused gestures for the Palestinians.

Remember – for Israel, the status quo is just fine. Settlements expand, land is taken, Palestinian homes are demolished and their residents displaced. One year in, the Trump administration is a willing accomplice to Israel’s consolidation of an apartheid, single state reality, and in doing so, is forcing the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah to face some tough questions about what lies ahead.



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20180120-trump-palestine-one-year-on/#comment-3717294659

Re: Saudi cleric killed in rural Guinea after preaching

A Saudi Arabian Islamic preacher was killed in eastern Guinea after proselytizing to hunting communities in a remote region near the Mali border, police and lawyers said on Friday.

The preacher’s death in the village of Kantedou Balandou on Tuesday was followed by the fatal stabbing on Wednesday of the head of a group of hunters, which authorities said was likely to have been a revenge killing.

It was not yet clear who was responsible for the deaths.

But they shed some light on the breadth of Saudi ambitions to spread conservative Salafist Islam in rural West Africa, and the sometimes violent opposition they face from people practicing traditional religions.

“I can confirm that a Saudi preacher was shot dead on Tuesday,” said police spokesman Boubacar Kasse. “Initial information tells us that the victim was taken after his preaching. The day after this incident, a young local man stabbed the chief of the traditional hunters,” he said.

Authorities declined to release the identity of the dead. The Saudi embassy in Conakry did not respond to a request for comment.

Saudi Arabia has spent millions of dollars to win converts to its strict form of Islam in Africa and gain influence. That has raised concerns of radicalisation, especially in West Africa where the more tolerant Sufi Islam has historically been more dominant.

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Guinea is predominantly Muslim, but many in rural areas have been practicing traditional religions for centuries. In those places the reception to foreign Islamic preachers can be hostile.

According to police spokesman Kasse, the dead Saudi was part of a group of five preachers, including three Guineans and one other Saudi.

When the preaching began, a group of onlookers began to boo, said William Fernandez, the Attorney General of the nearby Kankan Court of Appeal. The preacher tried to escape on a motor bike but was caught and killed, he said.

The next day, the man who killed the chief of a group of traditional hunters shouted “Allahu Akbar” (“God is Greatest”, in Arabic) before committing the act, Fernandez said, citing testimony from residents. A man is in custody for the crime.



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20180120-saudi-cleric-killed-in-rural-guinea-after-preaching/#comment-3717290016