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Sunday
Apr232017

Five Eyes spying alliance reportedly gather in NZ for secret surveillance conference 

Officials from some of the top international government spy agencies have flocked to New Zealand’s Queenstown for a secretive meeting of the Five Eyes spying alliance between the US, UK, Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

The secretive meeting is expected to bring FBI director James Comey and CIA chief Mike Pompeo together with the top officials from the Australian, Canadian, UK and New Zealand intelligence and security agencies.

A private jet in Wellington Airport sparked curiosity when its tail number was spotted on Saturday morning. The five-digit number, 10030, revealed the aircraft belongs to the CIA, Stuff NZ reports. A large number of corporate jets also landed in Queenstown on Friday.

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Sunday
Apr232017

The Retail Bubble Has Now Burst: A Record 8,640 Stores Are Closing In 2017

The devastation in the US retail sector is accelerating in 2017, and in addition to the surging number of brick and mortar retail bankruptcies, it is perhaps nowhere more obvious than in the soaring number of store closures.

While the shuttering of retail stores has been a frequent topic on this website, most recently in the context of the next "big short", namely the ongoing deterioration in the mall REITs and associated Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities and CDS, here is a stunning fact from Credit Suisse:"Barely a quarter into 2017, year-to-date retail store closings have already surpassed those of 2008."

According to the Swiss bank's calculations, on a unit basis, approximately 2,880 store closings were announced YTD, more than twice as many closings as the 1,153 announced during the same period last year.

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Sunday
Apr232017

Emergency within an emergency

HARVARD

The present study analyzes the risk factors responsible for the exposure of migrant and refugee children to physical, psychological, and sexual violence and exploitation in Greece in the context of the ongoing migrant humanitarian crisis. It documents sexual and physical abuse of children inside migrant camps and reports new information about the commercial sexual exploitation of migrant children in the main cities of Greece. This research also explores the existing gaps and challenges in intervention efforts that contribute to victimization of migrant children.

This study was conducted using rapid assessment methodology, combining qualitative research with in situ observation. Data collection was completed in late November 2016 in four sites in Greece—namely, the islands of Lesvos and Chios and the cities of Athens and Thessaloniki. These areas were chosen because they host large migrant populations, facilities, and camps.

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Sunday
Apr232017

It Has All Come Down To This, The Last Battle Between Good And Evil

Thursday
Apr202017

Sources: US prepares charges to seek arrest of WikiLeaks' Julian Assange

EDITOR'S NOTE: During the campaign, Trump said he loves Wikileaks! What happened? When will the hypocrisy end?

CNN

US authorities have prepared charges to seek the arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, US officials familiar with the matter tell CNN.

The Justice Department investigation of Assange and WikiLeaks dates to at least 2010, when the site first gained wide attention for posting thousands of files stolen by the former US Army intelligence analyst now known as Chelsea Manning.

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Thursday
Apr202017

CIA, FBI launch manhunt for leaker who gave top-secret documents to WikiLeaks

CBS News has learned that a manhunt is underway for a traitor inside the Central Intelligence Agency.

The CIA and FBI are conducting a joint investigation into one of the worst security breaches in CIA history, which exposed thousands of top-secret documents that described CIA tools used to penetrate smartphones, smart televisions and computer systems.

Sources familiar with the investigation say it is looking for an insider -- either a CIA employee or contractor -- who had physical access to the material. The agency has not said publicly when the material was taken or how it was stolen.

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Thursday
Apr202017

A Bernie Sanders Campaign Adviser Was a Russian. Now He’s Speaking Out.

A high-level adviser and operative for the 2016 Sanders campaign was Vitali Shkliarov, a Soviet-born citizen of Belarus. Shkliarov, who had previously worked on the 2012 Obama re-election campaign and for several other successful Democratic Party campaigns, has also become increasingly in demand as a political adviser and campaign manager in Russia, working for liberal candidates in opposition to President Vladimir Putin.

Possessing a unique background and vantage point, Shkliarov, now that the 2016 election is over, has many interesting observations to express on the state of American politics, the Democratic Party, U.S.-Russian relations, and the impact of rising anti-Russian sentiment in the U.S.

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Thursday
Apr202017

Our misguided ‘wars of choice’

There is one foreign policy goal that matters above all the others, and that is to keep the United States out of a new war, whether in Syria, North Korea, or elsewhere.

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Thursday
Apr202017

The Government is searching your phone without a warrant at the border

When Americans are standing on U.S. soil, we have constitutional rights. The government can’t go into your house and see what’s in your drawers or poke around in the attic. Police officers can’t take your phone and thumb through your photos without a good reason.

If you’re at the border or certain airport areas, the administration believes those protections evaporate. Without cause, government officials argue they have full authority to require Americans to unlock their phones, laptops, and other digital devices; search through our apps and files; and even copy everything on them.

Not only do they believe they have this authority in theory — these searches are happening now, and they’re becoming more common every day.

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Wednesday
Apr192017

Intercepted Podcast: Julian Assange Speaks Out as Trump’s CIA Director Threatens to “End” WikiLeaks

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange hits back at Trump’s CIA director Mike Pompeo after he accused WikiLeaks of being a “hostile nonstate intelligence agency” operating outside of the protections of the First Amendment. This week on Intercepted: We spend the entire show talking with Assange from inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he has been holed up since June 2012. In the wide-ranging interview, Assange discusses the allegations that WikiLeaks was abetted by Russian intelligence in its publication of DNC emails and the new-found admiration for him by FOX News, Anne Coulter, Sarah Palin, and Donald Trump.

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