Category Archives: Global News

** China Stealing U.S. Data

http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/nov2008/db20081121_440892.htm

China Stealing U.S. Computer Data, Says Commission

By Keith Epstein , Business Week

The top 10 U.S. defense contractors are said to be victims of cyber-espionage through Chinese “penetration of their unclassified networks”

A congressionally created commission has warned that China is stealing vast amounts of sensitive information from government and corporate computer networks in the U.S., including those of the nation’s top defense contractors. This theft is part of China’s preparation to outmaneuver the U.S. electronically in any future conflict, according to the bipartisan U.S.-China Economic & Security Review Commission.

The panel, established eight years ago, said in its annual report, released on Nov. 20: “China is targeting U.S. government and commercial computers for espionage.”

The 10 most prominent U.S. defense contractors are believed to have been “victims of cyber-espionage through penetrations of their unclassified networks,” the report said. Among them: Raytheon (RTN), Lockheed Martin (LMT), Boeing (BA), and Northrop Grumman (NOC).

The commission used its own analysts and investigators to compile information on data theft, based on input from defense, military, and intelligence agencies and specialists. Its findings echo the themes of several recent articles in BusinessWeek, which over the past 11 months has published a series on high-tech security threats to U.S. weapons systems and government and defense industry computer networks. The three main installments in the BusinessWeek series were based on previously undisclosed documents and interviews with more than 100 current and former government employees, defense industry executives, and people with ties to U.S. military, space, and intelligence agencies. They are: E-spionage (BusinessWeek, 4/10/08), () Dangerous Fakes (BusinessWeek, 10/2/08), and The Taking of NASA’s Secrets (BusinessWeek, 11/20/08).

Spying on NASA

In its report, the China security commission examined the implications of China’s pursuit of dominance in cyberspace and outer space. The panel asserted that the Chinese have sought both military secrets from U.S. government networks and lucrative proprietary information from American corporations. The advantage that China has gained from this espionage could reduce current U.S. conventional military dominance in any future conflict, the commission said.

An example of Chinese espionage cited in the report involves an incident in 2005 in which Chinese cyber-burglars downloaded files about the propulsion system, fuel tanks, and solar panels of NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, an incident with details similar to those described in the BusinessWeek story on secrets stolen from NASA.

The report accused China of “rationalizing” its behavior while “devising unique interpretations” of treaties. That development by China, the report said, “coupled with its military modernization, its development of impressive but disturbing capabilities for military use of space and cyber warfare, and its demonstrated employment of those capabilities, suggest China is intent on expanding its sphere of control even at the expense of its Asian neighbors and the United States.”

China, meanwhile, steadfastly denies engaging in any cyber-espionage or attempting to use cyberspace for military advantage. China’s Xinhua News Agency quoted Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang on Nov. 21 as calling the commission’s report “unworthy of rebuttal.” Qin said the commission “always sees China through distorted color spectacles, and intentionally creates obstacles for China-U.S. cooperation” by “smearing China deliberately and misleading the general public.”

China Needs Natural Resources, Too

While the Chinese government had no immediate response to a BusinessWeek request for comment, Wang Baodong, a spokesman for the Chinese Embassy in Washington, had earlier said about the magazine’s stories: “China will never do anything to harm the sovereignty or security of other countries. The Chinese government has never employed, nor will it employ, so-called civilian hackers in collecting information or intelligence of other countries.”

The U.S. commission predicted that China’s cyber-activities “quite possibly will be exacerbated by China’s growing need for natural resources to support its population and economy that it cannot obtain domestically. The United States should watch these trends closely and act to protect its interests.”

Specifically, the commission urged Congress to spend more money to protect the nation’s critical computer systems, and to monitor intrusions from abroad. It also recommends that Congress “assess the security and integrity of the supply chain for computer equipment” used in government and contractor networks, and spend more to buy “from trustworthy sources.”

Another worry: the global supply chain for telecommunications items and electronic components manufactured in China. “At least in theory, this equipment is vulnerable to tampering by Chinese security services, such as implanting malicious code that could be remotely activated on command and place U.S. systems or the data they contain at risk of destruction or manipulation,” the report said. It cited the Oct. 13 Dangerous Fakes BusinessWeek cover story that described how hazardous counterfeits are ending up in U.S. military planes and other weapon systems. The commission pointed to a recent incident in which hundreds of counterfeit routers made in China were discovered in active use throughout the Defense Dept.

Epstein is a correspondent in BusinessWeek‘s Washington bureau.

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** Secret about Kashmir

The Little Secret about Kashmir
 
There is a little-known secret of South Asia. You ought to know this one if you want to understand the escalating religious conflict in Kashmir, pitting two new nuclear-armed nations – secular India and Islamic Pakistan – against each other.
 
This is the secret: from every newly-formed Muslim majority area of South Asia – without exception – including Pakistan, Bangladesh and in India’s own Kashmir, non-Muslims have been massively cleansed and driven to Hindu-majority India.
 
It is for the above reason that Pakistan is at least 97% Muslim and India is at least 15% Muslim.
 
Besides implying the inability to co-exist, it may be reasonable to interpret these data as a form of conquest in the name of Islam.
 
The scary part is that the religion-based passion for conquest never stops!
Muslim-concentrated areas in nearby non-Muslim lands are singled out for further conquest. We now have documented evidence that a long-term and systematic funding process was put in place to indoctrinate the Muslim majority in Indian Kashmir to develop hatred toward their Indian nation, to identify with pan-Islamic aspirations, and to sponsor armed insurgencies.
 
While Pakistan and just about all Muslim nations support “self-determination” of Muslims in Indian Kashmir, they are deafeningly silent in acknowledging that the portion of Kashmir Pakistan holds is almost devoid of non-Muslims.
 
Also conveniently unspoken is the complicity of the Kashmiri Muslims in driving out over 300,000 non-Muslim Kashmiris to the rest of India and the religious apartheid practices of the ruling Muslim Kashmiris over the non-Muslim subjects within the state.
 
Seen in the appropriate context, the claims of “self-determination” of Muslim majority Kashmir from India is an all too clever prescription for conquering more land at the expense of non-Muslims, by attaching the land of Kashmir to Islamic Pakistan.
 
Is it not ironic that Pakistan would want more land from India when it owes India significant portion of its real estate as a compensation for having driven out its non-Muslim population to India?
 
India has had to absorb the non-Muslims driven away from Pakistan’s Kashmir without a murmur or two.
 
Disgruntled Indian Kashmiri Muslims who want to live in an Islamic state have a land next-door; it is called Pakistan.
 
The beleaguered secular Indian state which gave even more rights and generous subsidies to Muslim-majority Kashmir has been successfully portrayed as an “occupier” of Muslim lands and an “oppressor” of Muslims.
 
The die has been cast.
 
Indoctrination and recruitment of Muslims for terror has now extended into the Indian heartland with devastating consequences. At this rate, capital flight is inevitable and so is the systematic destruction of the Indian economy.
 
A slower version of the Darfur-like situation is indeed developing in India.
Thanks to subsidies and the high cost of fighting terror, Indian Kashmiri Muslim children do not die of malnutrition. But children in the rest of India do – about 6,000 of them every day! Even sub-Saharan African states are no worse than India when it comes to malnourishment of their children.
 
The excitement of a resurgent India is fast getting replaced with a nation that is undeservedly on its way to becoming a graveyard of tens of millions malnourished children and their parents forever trapped in grinding poverty.
 
These little Indians deserve to live – and that alone is a moral high ground India can rely on to resolutely fight back without ceding any more land to the agents of conquest.
 
Moorthy Muthuswamy is author of the forthcoming book: “Defeating Political Islam: The New Cold War.”

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** Italians and the Gypsies

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/world-focus-italians-and-the-gypsies-ndash-an-old-prejudice-revived-870863.html

Italians and the Gypsies – an old prejudice revived 

By Peter Popham-18 July 2008

The decision by Silvio Berlusconi’s government that all Italian citizens should now be fingerprinted, and that from 2010, all national identity and residence cards will carry fingerprints seems bizarre. There is no urgent reason for such an elaborate programme and fingerprints are out of date as an identification method.

 The real reason for the decision, which received initial assent from a parliamentary committee on Wednesday, is to enable the government to continue taking the fingerprints of Roma or Gypsies who live in camps, both legal and informal, on the outskirts of many Italian cities, a policy which bears comparison with the worst days of Benito Mussolini.

A month ago the Interior Minister, Roberto Maroni, a member of the anti-immigrant Northern League, announced that all residents of such camps, including children, would be fingerprinted – a decision that prompted outrage inside Italy and beyond. Unicef, the Council of Europe, the Catholic Church, and Amnesty International have condemned the initiative, one that, despite being a clear violation of EU law, is already under way in the Naples area. This week’s decision, which still has to be signed off by parliament, means that under cover of a national programme, the fingerprinting of the residents of the so called “nomad” camps can continue without interruption.

But why fingerprint the Gypsies? The most significant issue in the general election campaign this spring was what was called the “security emergency”: the perception by Italians that violent crime was rapidly on the increase, and that it was the fault of foreigners.

In fact crimes of violence are not soaring, but there has been a large rise in legal and illegal immigration in recent years. As in other parts of Europe this has been accompanied by a strong anti-immigrant groundswell which finds focus whenever a foreigner is accused of some heinous crime. Gypsies are not proportionately more to blame for these crimes than other groups.

But an ancient prejudice against Gypsies (who have lived in Italy since the 14th century) has been fuelled by paranoia about security in general, and a common confusion between rom (Roma) and rumeni (Romanians) who as EU citizens, have moved into Italy in large numbers since Romania’s accession to the union in 2007.

Mr Berlusconi’s government seems determined to exploit and amplify the hysteria. There is little to suggest that the government will desist from seeking to gratify its political constituency with further measures of this kind.

Europe’s Civilising Mission @ http://www.neurope.eu/articles/87642.php

British Caste-System @ http://worldmonitor.wordpress.com/2007/11/27/militants-set-france-ablaze/

Targets of racial violence @ http://www.organiser.org/dynamic/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=245&page=41

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** BBC’s Propaganda?

BBC Reporter: Genuine Eyewitness or Palestinian Propagandist?

HonestReporting.com

Whose version of events does a BBC journalist stand by?

The BBC’s “From Our Own Correspondent” program broadcast on Radio 4 and published on BBC Online allows BBC journalists the opportunity to report their personal reflections from a particular event or location. Sometimes this removes the charade of objectivity that the BBC claims to uphold, most famously in the case of Barbara Plett’s tears for Arafat.

Now, the BBC’s Aleem Maqbool reports from Ramallah, where he includes this dramatic story:

One weekday last year, at about three in the afternoon, Israeli armoured jeeps moved into the centre of Ramallah, pulling up outside the most popular hummus cafe.

In full view of passers-by, including children on their way back from school, the troops dragged a man in his early 20s out of the cafe. He was a wanted militant. They shot him – first in the legs, then stomach, then his head.

Within minutes, the “Palestinian reflex” had kicked in. Schoolboys piled into the area to throw stones at the soldiers until they left. As we arrived, the troops fired back with live bullets, injuring four people, before the jeeps sped out of the city.

In the next paragraph Maqbool implies that he was an eyewitness to this incident, which is portrayed as an IDF “execution”:

Once the army had gone, I have to say, I was a little surprised to see grown Palestinian men standing by the side of the road, weeping and hugging, and teenagers who’d been throwing stones, breaking down.

Maqbool appears to be describing the death of Palestinian terrorist Omar Abdel-Halim. CAMERA, however, investigated media coverage of this incident and discovered countless contradictions between the accounts of so-called Palestinian “eyewitnesses”, Palestinian NGOs and media outlets, which could not even agree on the correct name of the terrorist.

While Maqbool claims that the man was dragged out of a cafe, Ha’aretz, The New York Times and AFP all reported that a firefight had broken out between Israeli forces and Palestinian gunmen. The Financial Times, meanwhile, reported that “witnesses said Halim was in civilian clothes, wore a holstered service weapon and was carrying an AK-47 as he left the Nazareth restaurant” in Ramallah. Was Halim “dragged” out of the restaurant as Maqbool claims?

Maqbool claims that “Israeli armoured jeeps” were present. The FT report, however, refers to “a white van bearing Palestinian number plates” from which Israeli troops exited.

According to the IDF:

The force identified Abed Al-Halim aiming his AK-47 assault rifle at them and opened fire at him. Abed Al-Halim attempted to flee the scene. Forces fired at him once more and identified hitting him. The soldiers ceased fire at the moment Abed Al-Halim no longer posed a threat to him. …

During the operation, shots were fired and stones were hurled at the Border Police force, which responded with warning shots and specific fire at an identified source of fire. The IDF has received no information regarding civilian injuries and no such claims were registered with the DCO.

Perhaps it is not clear exactly what occurred during this incident. What is clear from CAMERA’s investigation, however, is the patent unreliability of Palestinian eyewitnesses and sources along with the media’s apparent willingness to report conjecture as fact.

So, is the BBC’s Aleem Maqbool a genuine eyewitness to these events in Ramallah a year ago? And if so, which version of this contradictory story is he prepared to stick by? Or is he simply regurgitating the Palestinian version designed to cause maximum damage to Israel’s image in a minimum number of sentences?

Typical of the BBC’s reporting is the failure to provide adequate context to its stories or to verify unreliable sources. If the BBC is prepared to make such a serious allegation of an IDF “execution”, then the least its reporter can provide is hard facts and background material, which was severely lacking in this particular story.

Please write to BBC Complaints – http://www.bbc.co.uk/complaints – and ask if Aleem Maqbool can clarify his version of events that day in Ramallah. (Please remember to include the program “From Our Own Correspondent”, the story hyperlink and the appropriate date, 3 June 2008.)

(With thanks to CAMERA for its original investigation and assistance.)

BBC’S CHRONOLOGICAL INVERSION

Amnon Rosenberg, 51, was killed on 5 June, the third fatality from Palestinian mortar fire from Gaza in a month, as terrorists hit Kibbutz Nir Oz in the western Negev. In response, the Israeli Airforce targeted Palestinian terrorists in Gaza, which tragically claimed the life of a 4 year old Palestinian girl as an airstrike missed its target.

However, in a clear case of chronological inversion, the BBC’s report “Two dead in Gaza-Israel attacks” only mentions as far down as the fourth paragraph that “The attack, which also injured two women, came after Palestinian militants shelled an Israeli kibbutz, killing a civilian and wounding four others.”

Why does the BBC fail to make clear the chronological order of events? Thus, the BBC fails to differentiate between terrorists who initiated the attack with intent to kill civilians and those who responded in self-defense, seeking to protect their civilians.

http://www.honestreporting.com/articles/45884734/critiques/new/
BBC_Reporter_Genuine_Eyewitness_or_Palestinian_Propagandist.asp

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** Whither Decency?

Christian Evangelism: Whither Decency?

H. DeSilva, CrusadeWatch

The world (or more correctly, the west) appears infatuated with “Muslim fanaticism.” We are told over and over again that Islam preaches fanaticism, and that Muslims are allegedly violent and have a blind hatred of non-Muslims. But really, how true are these vacuous claims? They are stories made to justify violent attacks on the Muslim community around the world, and take attention away from those who really harbour ill-will against followers of other religions. The media has not given enough attention to the insidious campaign that is taking place this very minute to reduce and wipeout Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam and the various other religious traditions that are followed by large sections of humanity.

When I look around, the only people I see trying to wipe out other religions and other peoples’ belief systems are the Christian evangelists and their loud supporters. I have never ever encountered a Buddhist, Hindu or Muslim preacher barging in on my privacy and pushing their holy books in my face, nor have I seen Buddhists, Hindus or Muslims set up organizations purely for the sake of converting others through hook and crook.

Despite having a similar religious heritage, we can clearly see that it is the Christian evangelists who are the real religious extremists, and not the Muslims as loudly claimed by various sections of the media.

Christian evangelism today does not appear to have any respect for cultural and religious diversity. Its aim is to wipe out all non-Christian cultural and religious traditions and replace them with Christianity – more often than not the western version of it, which has very little in common with the country or society it is targetting. Many tribal societies across the world have lost their heritage and are in the process of losing them due to the activities of these evangelists. In refusing to see the good in other religions and other ways-of-life, Christian evangelists take on an extremely fundamentalist position that is an affront not only to non-Christians, but to moderate Christians as well.

I am often quite amazed and plainly shocked at the fanatical zeal shown by these Christian evangelists, who wish to convert the entire world to Christianity through whatever means necessary. Entire organizations, or more correctly enterprises, have been set up with the sole purpose of “harvesting souls for God,” and there are many individuals whose job in life is to convert non-Christians to Christianity, and they are paid handsomely to do it. No expense is spared in this task of trying to bring every single person on planet earth to the “light of Jesus Christ,” and no thought whatsoever is given to the religious and cultural diversity that makes this world such a wonderful place.

For these extremists, the sooner all the non-Christian “pagan” and “Satan-inspired” religions perish or are annihilated, the better the world will be; a rather fanatical, nazi-esque position if there ever was one. By sending evangelist teams around the world and setting up shop in non-Christian majority countries, these evangelist organisations work to destroy the pillars of religious coexistence and tolerance and erect their own pillars of religious supremacy and intolerance in those countries. And Sri Lanka is just another one of their many targets – yet another country “infested with evil pagans” who need to be brought to the “light of Jesus Christ.”

With the kind of mentality explained above, these evangelists have no qualms about using whatever means necessary to gain converts. As they have invaded countries that may not be wealthy, and as is the case in Sri Lanka, they use material inducements to convert the poor and destitute non-Christians to Christianity. For them, buying souls for their God is not an issue, but the tally of supposedly “saved souls” is. Conversion today has become a big business with big bucks behind it, and, unfortunately, the world we live in appears a battle ground for the Christian evangelists where the competitors are not only the non-Christian religions but rival Christian sects as well.

And to them, all is fair in war. Encouraging new converts to smash statues of the Buddha and Hindu gods and godesses, burn pictures of the Buddha and Hindu gods and godesses, burn Dharma books and renounce “pagan” cultural activities are all considered suitable methods of propagating Christanity. Giving potential child converts biscuits fashioned in the shape of a Buddha image, and encouraging the kids to eat them while preaching Christianity do not strike the evangelists as insensitive and indecent. And following in the footsepts of the colonials in Sri Lanka, these cash-rich evangelists offer food, money and employment to convince poor Sri Lankans to convert to Christianity, asserting that it is the Christian God that is the harbinger of prosperity and that it is the “Satan-inspired” Buddhist/Hindu/Muslim traditions that continue to keep them in poverty.

It is no wonder that many Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and moderate Christians are simply apalled at the way the evangelists carry out their proselytism, and are extremely worried about the impact it will have on religious harmony in this country. It can already be seen that the provocative activities of Christian evangelists have led to the destabilsation of peace and harmony among the various religious communities, and if these evangelists continue with their unethical and iconoclastic methods of proselytism the situation is bound to get worse. Sri Lanka could very well do without these people who are hell-bent on creating a religious imbroglio in this beautiful island.

Christian evangelists in Sri Lanka and the greater Asian region need to reconsider their unethical and aggresive methods of proselytism. They need to start according respect to other systems of belief instead of treating them as sworn enemies. The current mentality that drives proselytism, as well as the actual methods of proselytism employed by the evangelists are going against accepted norms of decency and are creating a negative image of Christianity at large.

By caring naught for religious harmony in Sri Lanka, Christian evangelists are doing this country a huge disfavour. And as Sri Lankans, we cannot sit idly by and watch the religious harmony which we treasure so much disintegrate before our very eyes. We cannot affort to ignore the threat unethical and aggressive evangelism poses to peace and harmony in this country. To do so would mean the victory of fundamentalism and intolerance.

So there is an important question that we must ask ourselves: when will the ideological and iconoclastic war waged by Christian evangelists against the Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims of this country end? Because as long as the evangelists wage a war to dismantle and/or destroy Buddhism, Hinduism and Islam in this country, there can never be true religious harmony. A predator-prey relationship is not conducive to peace and is always marked by stress. This is especially the case for the prey. The predatory desire to see other religions perish and to have Christianity “triumph” over these other religions cannot be condoned and should never be condoned by anyone with a sense of decency. It is a fundamentalist position that is not in tune with our culture and way of life which gives priority to religious harmony and religious tolerance.

Religious pluralism is what Sri Lanka is about and the evangelists want to destroy that. We cannot and must not let them succeed.

Benedict’s Evangelism @ http://www.thetrumpet.com/index.php?page=article&id=3215

url: http://www.crusadewatch.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=914&Itemid=128

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