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Indonesian woman becomes latest person to be caned ‘for standing near boyfriend’

A 20-year-old woman in Indonesia has been publicly caned for standing too close to her boyfriend, becoming the 14th person to be flogged this month in the same province. The unnamed woman was accused of breaking Islamic Sharia law, which strictly forbids unmarried couples to become intimate, and was flogged in front of a crowd in Banda Aceh province. She …

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Emma Daly – Journalists at Risk

For reporters at risk around the world – because they’re exposing corruption, covering conflict, or afflicting the comfortable – today matters: it’s the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists. You’d think a group of professional communicators could have come up with a catchier name, but whatever it’s called, the day itself is recognition of an issue that …

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PATRICK COCKBURN – This is What Will Happen to Mosul After ISIS is Evicted

I visited Mosul on the day it fell to Kurdish Peshmerga fighters and a small detachment of US Special Forces on 11 April 2003. As we drove into the city, we passed lines of pick-up trucks piled high with loot returning to the Kurdish-controlled enclave in northern Iraq. US soldiers at a checkpoint, over which waved the Stars and Stripes, …

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Harriet Agerholm – Iranian girls ‘given eight lashings each because their parents could not pay school fees’

A group of schoolgirls in Iran have been flogged because their parents owed less than eight pounds in school fees, according to an opposition group in the country. Ten girls from the Mokhtarabad village in the country’s southern province of Kerman reportedly endured eight lashings each from their school principal after they failed to pay 300,000 riyals in fees. There …

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Russia Finds – Shaming The U.S. Government Into Action Can Work

Russia Finds – Shaming The U.S. Government Into Action Can Work Russia has now managed twice to shame the U.S. into action against Jihadis by publicly demonstrating that the U.S. is not really committed to its promises. During 2014 and 2015 the U.S. did very little to attack the Islamic State. U.S. strikes hit irrelevant targets likean “ISIS excavator” or some …

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Dahr Jamail – In Arctic, Ancient Diseases Reanimate and Highways Melt as Temperatures Hit “Frenzy” of Records

By the time I’d reached the end of my 10 years of reportage on the impacts of the US occupation of Iraq in 2013, it was impossible for me to find an Iraqi who did not have a family member, relative or friend who had been killed either by US troops, an act of non-state sponsored terrorism or random violence …

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DEEP HISTORY AND THE GLOBAL DRUG CONNECTION, PART 3: A DEADLY BUREAUCRACY

Opium poppies in Helmand Photo credit: U.S. Marines / Wikimedia Introduction by Russ Baker: More musings from Peter Dale Scott, the “father of Deep State analysis.” It’s heady and sometimes difficult material, but no one has gone as deeply as he has in trying to understand the nature of power in America, and ties between the state, the Underworld, and the criminal …

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Chris Hedges – We Are All Islamic State

Revenge is the psychological engine of war. Victims are the blood currency. Their corpses are used to sanctify acts of indiscriminant murder. Those defined as the enemy and targeted for slaughter are rendered inhuman. They are not worthy of empathy or justice. Pity and grief are felt exclusively for our own. We vow to eradicate a dehumanized mass that embodies …

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Story of cities #3: the birth of Baghdad was a landmark for world civilisation

If Baghdad today is a byword for inner-city decay and violence on an unspeakable scale, its foundation 1,250 years ago was a glorious milestone in the history of urban design. More than that, it was a landmark for civilisation, the birth of a city that would quickly become the cultural lodestar of the world. Contrary to popular belief, Baghdad is …