Friday, October 5, 2018

Jeremy Corbyn Calls For an Arms Embargo on Israel - Hugh Fitzgerald

by Hugh Fitzgerald

A disturbing glimpse at the U.K. Labor Party's leader -- and his dark Jew-hating world.

The Labour Party — Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party –has called for the U.K to impose a  total arms embargo  on Israel. This would not be the first time the U.K. has imposed such an embargo on Israel. In the 1948-49 Arab-Israeli war, at the time of maximum peril to the Jews of Israel, with the nascent state invaded by the armies of five Arab states, Great Britain also imposed such an embargo. It was not alone. The United States also banned sending arms to the belligerents on either side. The most important weapons deliveries, including airplanes, for the Jews in 1947-49 came from Czechoslovakia.

The British, unlike the Americans, did not impose an arms embargo on both sides in 1948. Instead, they continued to supply arms to Egypt, Jordan, and Iraq. More important, the British armed, trained, and provided officers, to the Arab Legion of Jordan. Under the overall command of General John Bagot Glubb, the Arab Legion was the most effective fighting force on the Arab side, and the only one that could claim a clear victory — at Latrun — over the Jews during the 1948 war. Even before the war was declared by the Arab states, the Arab Legion joined forces with local Arabs, who attacked the four Israeli settlements that made up the Etzzion bloc. The Jewish forces consisted of members of the Hagana militia and kibbutzniks. Of the 129 Haganah fighters and Jewish kibbutzniks who died during the defence of the settlement, Martin Gilbert states that fifteen were murdered on surrendering.

Controversy surrounds the responsibility and role of the Arab Legion in the killing of those who surrendered. The official Israeli version maintains that the kibbutz residents and Haganah soldiers were massacred by local Arabs and the Arab Legion of the Jordanian Army as they were surrendering. The Arab Legion version maintains that the Legion arrived too late to prevent the attack on the kibbutz by men from nearby Arab villages. The  surrendering Jewish residents and fighters are said to have been assembled in a courtyard, only to be suddenly fired upon; it is said that many died on the spot, while most of those who managed to flee were hunted down and killed. Israel continues to insist that members of the British-commanded Arab Legion took part in the killing of those who had surrendered.

John Bagot Glubb was one of those old-style British Arabists — some called him a second Lawrence of Arabia — who went native in a big way, even able to converse with the Bedouin in their own dialects. When he was finally discharged by King Hussein in 1956 — Hussein wanted to totally “arabize” the Legion and show other Arabs that he was indeed Jordan’s ruler — Glubb Pasha retired to his home in Great Britain, and wrote a series of books “to dispel Western misconceptions and prejudices about the Arab world and Islam.” Delving deep into the past, he started that series in 1964 with ”The Great Arab Conquests,” a book on seventh-century Arabia where, he wrote, the Bedouins ”established the greatest empire in the world of their day.” A second book, ‘The Lost Centuries,” published in 1966, “traced the destiny of the Moslem empires from the 12th century to the European renaissance in the 15th.” A third book. “The Life and Times of Muhammad” again was an effort to correct cliches he thought had “distorted the image of the founder of Islam and his religion.” Glubb was a great admirer of the Arabs. He adopted two Palestinian Arab children. He also was an apologist for Islam. And the Arab Legion stood for all the military aid that the British lavished on the Arab side in that 1947-1949 conflict.

So Corbyn’s call for an arms embargo on Israel brings us back to the earliest days of the state. But now Israel has one of the most powerful armies in the world, is itself in the top ten of the world’s arms exporters, and in some areas of military technology — such as drones — is among the world leaders. Furthermore, while Israel does import a large amount of weaponry from the United Kingdom, there is nothing it receives from the U.K. that is not available elsewhere, albeit at a higher price. Israel is a good customer, and its expert use of the weapons it buys serves as  a kind of advertisement for those weapons with other potential buyers. The amount of British sales to Israel has gone way up in the last three years: £20m worth of arms licensed in 2015, £86m in 2016, and £221m in 2017.

If Corbyn wants to put a total arms embargo on Israel, will he also call for an arms embargo on any other countries? One country buys 49% of all British arms exports — Saudi Arabia. On what grounds could Corbyn deny democratic Israel arms and yet continue to supply them to one of the world’s most repressive regimes, a state where Wahhabism is the official religion, where human rights hardly exist, where non-Muslim workers have no rights and often are treated as little better than slaves, where women have far fewer rights than do men, where public executions and public amputations are the norm, where a ruling dynasty helps itself to tens of billions of dollars of the nation’s wealth? How could Jeremy Corbyn conceivably justify continuing to supply such a country with weaponry? And what of the other major buyers of British arms that are dictatorships or despotisms? China, the United Arab Emirates, Algeria, Qatar, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Venezuela, Egypt, Bahrain are among them. Most are outright dictatorships; Venezuela and Pakistan hold “elections,” but there is so much fraud, intimidation, and corruption that these cannot be considered  democracies in the Western sense. If any kind of morality is to be invoked in arms sales, then none of these countries ought to be supplied. Is Jeremy Corbyn ready to declare an embargo on all of these countries, or is he  interested only in depriving Israel’s Jews of the wherewithal to defend themselves?

“The UK has consistently armed many of the most brutal and authoritarian regimes in the world, and a number have been invited to London to buy weapons,” said Andrew Smith of Campaign Against Arms Trade. “These arms sales aren’t morally neutral, they are a clear sign of political and military support for these regimes.”

I suspect Smith was not talking about Israel, which is neither brutal nor authoritarian, but about Saudi Arabia, China, Venezuela, the Emirates, Kazakhstan. That’s not something Jeremy Corbyn wants to hear. But even if Smith meant to include Israel in his indictment — as supposedly “brutal” in its suppression of the Hamas-sponsored riots in Gaza — he would certainly be aghast at an arms embargo that targeted only that country.

Israel is one of the few countries that has had violence constantly forced upon it. It has had to fight three major wars for its existence, in 1947-49, in 1967, and in 1973. It has fought smaller wars, too: the Sinai Campaign in 1956, the three recent wars in Gaza — in 2008-2009, 2012, and 2014 — against Hamas, as well as an endless campaign against Arab terrorists inside Israel and the territories. Israel must, unfortunately, make use of the weapons it buys. It thus tests them out on the battlefield. If Israel successfully uses British weapons, and the Israelis have a long history of successfully using their weapons — then other potential buyers on the world market will find them more appealing. If the British defense industry can no longer supply Israel, it will not have that battlefield testing of its weapons, that real-life advertisement for their efficacy.

Will a British embargo really hurt Israel? Licences issued to UK defense contractors exporting to Israel in 2017 included those for targeting equipment, small arms ammunition, missiles, weapon sights and sniper rifles. In 2016, the UK issued licences for anti-armour ammunition, gun mountings, components for air-to-air missiles, targeting equipment, components for assault rifles, components for grenade-launchers and anti-riot shields. None of these, with the possible exception of the “components for air-to-air missiles” and “missiles,” are major items. None of them seem to be the kind of thing that Israel could not find from another supplier. Unlike, say, Israel’s own Iron Dome technology, or now its “steel dome” anti-tunnel technology that has been developed with the Americans, there is nothing the British can offer that is unique to them.

There is another aspect to consider. Corbyn may not care, but many in the security services of the United Kingdom certainly do care, about what Israel can offer, not just in weapons systems of its own, but in its intelligence capability. Israel has for years faced an extraordinary threat from Muslim terrorists. Now much of the world faces the same kind, if not the same level, of threat. Israel has during that time developed intelligence networks, both human and technological, that are unrivaled, and of obvious interest to other governments. One government that has collaborated with Israel, receiving information about Iran and such allied terrorist threats as Hezbollah, is Saudi Arabia. Last year, Great Britain was the European nation that suffered the most attacks by Muslim terrorists. It needs whatever help other countries can give. Israel has the expertise — again, both human and technological — that could help detect and foil such threats. Its knowledge is not limited to terrorists in the Middle East. The European nations ought to be solidifying their security ties to Israel, for their own benefit. None of them has had the experience of terrorism that Israel has endured for decades, nor do they have the expertise its agents have developed. There are many acts of Israeli derring-do, of eliminating terrorists in Damascus, or in hotels in the Gulf, or in the capitals of Europe.There have been the assassinations of four Iranian nuclear scientists right in the middle of Tehran, that set back their nuclear program for a long time.

The Israelis also devised Stuxnet (with some help from the Americans), a diabolically clever computer worm that does little or no harm to computers not involved in uranium enrichment. When it infects a computer, it checks to see if that computer is connected to specific models of programmable logic controllers (PLCs) manufactured by Siemens. PLCs are how computers interact with and control industrial machinery like uranium centrifuges. The worm then alters the PLCs’ programming, resulting in the centrifuges being spun too quickly and for too long, damaging or destroying the delicate equipment in the process. While this is happening, the PLCs tell the controller computer that everything is working fine, making it difficult to detect or diagnose what’s going wrong until it’s too late. That is not something that Jeremy Corbyn, who has never said a word about Iran’s nuclear project, would probably care about. He doesn’t realize how much the Israelis have done, in protecting themselves by delaying Iran’s plans, to also protect the West. Nor does Corbyn ever discuss Islamic terrorism. So why would he care if Israel continues to be of inestimable value to the West in helping foil Islamic terrorists, if he doesn’t think that such terrorism is much of a problem? For Corbyn, the only problem that haunts him is the existence of Israel, that vast outpost, the last remaining example of Western colonialism, that doth bestride the world like a colossus.

In considering the wisdom of an arms embargo, Corbyn should be reminded of Israel’s extraordinary advances and innovations in weapons technology, right across the board: the Merkava battle tank, the Spike missile system, the Tavor assault rifle, the Jericho III intercontinental ballistic missile, the Iron Dome defense, and the many improvements Israel has made to American weapons and systems of all kinds.. Some of these just might be useful to the British military. But these technological feats are of no concern to Corbyn; he’s not interested in arms; he doesn’t believe in war; he’s a disarmament enthusiast from way back. His grasp of geopolitical reality does not go much beyond Islington. He’s interested in arms embargoes, or rather in one particular arms embargo, the one he wishes to impose on Israel. (We’ll get to Saudi Arabia, China, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, and other arms customers who don’t appear to bother him at all, a bit later). Corbyn sees Israel not as a tiny permanently imperiled country but as an implacable and powerful colonialist entity, an outpost of the West (Corbyn doesn’t much care for the West, he likes the Third World), using the Holocaust as a way to justify its oppression of the poor “Palestinians.” He doesn’t want to arm a state like that.

Israel would have something to lose if Corbyn were to declare an arms embargo. But it would not lose nearly as much as Corbyn thinks, for so much of what Israel buys from the U.K. is the kind of thing that can be bought elsewhere. It is the U.K. that would be shooting itself in the foot, by damaging so dramatically its relations with the one Western country that, because of its long experience of dealing with Islamic terrorism and terrorist networks, knows best how to uncover, infiltrate, foil, and fight them. The knowledge Israel has acquired has been shared with the West, and has helped to have saved Western lives. Corbyn may not know this. Were he to become Prime Minister, he would then be privy to all sorts of secrets. He would learn the full extent of the terrorist threat inside the U.K. He would learn, too, how much the British, and other European, security services rely on information that is supplied by Israel. Perhaps even that knowledge wouldn’t change his determination to impose an arms embargo, one that would spell the end of any cooperation with Israel. Or perhaps, mugged by reality with the first terror attack that occurs when he is the resident of 10 Downing Street, he will shift course, and if not embrace, at least not push away, those “Zionists” that for now he so implacably disfavors.

Hugh Fitzgerald


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Obama's America on Display at Kavanaugh Hearings - Frank Hawkins

by Frank Hawkins

Obama polarized America according to race, ethnic background, sex, sexual orientation, and politics. Like a deadly cancer, the Obama legacy has metastasized into widespread hatred among Americans.

President Trump has been in an uphill battle to reverse Obama's efforts to "fundamentally transform" America. Trump's successes in the past 20 months in erasing the damage of the Obama's eight years are well documented. But he has a long way to go based on what we saw in the Kavanaugh hearings.

Trump's biggest challenge is to push back Obama's primary legacy of identity politics, which is destroying the fabric of our nation. Neighbors, family members and old friends have been split apart, by design. Obama polarized America according to race, ethnic background, sex, sexual orientation, and politics.

Like a deadly cancer, the Obama legacy has metastasized into widespread hatred among Americans that was on display at the Kavanaugh hearings. Obama's primary legacy is dangerously malignant and more toxic than ever, fueled by cynical and destructive politicians, the Alinsky Rules for Radicals, and billions of dollars from the evil George Soros.

Statements from the hearings and the left-wing mobs and commentators attempting to disrupt the proceedings tell the story. "Call your senators and tell them to vote no for Kavanaugh – the future of our country deserves more than a privileged white boy." Were you able to catch the code words? "Privileged." "White boy."

Hawaii Democrat Mazie Hirono made headlines when she told all men to "shut up and step up and do the right thing for a change." In other words, men rarely do the right thing. Men, did you get it?

Democrat Senator Cory Booker used his "Spartacus moment" to suggest that Kavanaugh was guilty of "racial profiling." Racial profiling, presumably against minorities. Get it?

"Women deserve to be angry all of the time," said talk show host Andy Richter. "This country's government is an abuser. We live in the most shameful of times." Yes, of course, the Trump government is an abuser of women. Now armed leftists, some with funding from George Soros, are calling for mass violence if Kavanaugh is confirmed.

Here's one certain to win over a lot of Americans: "The Antifa Website Calls for 'Slaughter' of 'Fascistic Border Patrol Dogs and Their Bosses."

In short, the Kavanaugh nomination reveals the obvious: we no longer have a viable two-party system in which both parties embrace our current Constitution-based system, share the same set of core values and fairness, and agree on certain standards of ethical conduct regardless of who wins an election.

This all sums up the primary legacy of one Barack Hussein Obama. You'll remember he's the one who appointed to the Supreme Court Sonia Sotomayor, who famously suggested that a "wise Latina" on the bench would come to more just decisions than a white male. Did you get the code words there? Some Republicans in a show of good faith actually voted for her.

Go back to July 2009, when Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates was arrested outside his home in what was clearly a misunderstanding between him and the police. Obama, just a few months in office, immediately politicized it.
I don't know ... what role race played in that. But I think it's fair to say ... the Cambridge police acted stupidly[.] ... We know separate and apart from this incident is that there's a long history in this country of African Americans and Latinos being stopped by law enforcement disproportionately.

Did you get all of that? Police acted stupidly. A long history of black Americans and Latinos stopped by police acting "disproportionately."

After Trayvon Martin was killed after attacking a partially black Latino who happened to have a "white" name, George Zimmerman, Obama quickly jumped in, noting that if he had a son, he would look like Martin, a black hoodie-wearing 17-year-old. Get it? I'm black. The kid is black. He must be innocent. The support Trayvon movement led to the formation of "Black Lives Matter," an incendiary project funded by George Soros that brags that it is now global network with more than 40 chapters.
When Michael Brown was shot dead after assaulting a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri in 2014, a large fuss was made over the racial composition of the police department. Obama wasn't going to let this crisis go to waste.
The death of Michael Brown is heartbreaking, and Michelle and I send our deepest condolences to his family and his community at this very difficult time. As Attorney General Holder has indicated, the Department of Justice is investigating the situation along with local officials.
The Department of Justice subsequently found no civil rights violations in the case. But the damage was done. Obama had already identified with Michael Brown, showing "compassion" for his – as it turned out – so-called family.

And who can forget Freddie Gray, Jr., a 25-year-old black man who was arrested by Baltimore police for possessing an illegal knife? While in a police van, Gray fell into a coma and died. Obama wasted no time getting involved. "This has been going on for a long time. This is not new, and we shouldn't pretend that it's new." Get it? Black people getting killed by police has been going on for a long time. Riots followed. Homicides with a preponderance of black victims spiked. Ultimately, the six Baltimore police officers involved (three of them black men and one black woman) were all found not guilty or charges were dropped. But again, the damage had been done. Obama's DOJ reluctantly announced it would not bring federal charges against the officers.

It isn't just race that Obama has used to divide us. The Obama legacy is also about sexual politics. Remember when Obama ordered all U.S. public schools to allow students to access opposite-sex restrooms in a move that escalates the national fight over LGBT rights? That escalated battles at the statewide level. Michelle Obama has also been part of the effort. After leaving the White House, she said, "Any woman who voted against Hillary Clinton, voted against their [sic] own voice."

Over 60 million Americans saw through this. Trump was elected president. But the Obama damage was obvious. At the end of Obama's presidency, just 27 percent saw the U.S. as more united, according to an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll conducted after the 2016 election. Far more – 44 percent – said it was more divided. USA Today has just reported that a third of American voters think a civil war is coming.

The Kavanaugh hearings were a major opportunity for the left. Former House speaker Newt Gingrich blasted the Democrats for behaving:
... in an evil way unworthy of the United States. This has been the most despicable behavior by a major party in modern history. This is a deliberate, vicious, character assassination – hurt the guy's daughters, hurt his mother, hurt his wife, hurt his reputation – they didn't care[.]
Writer Patricia McCarthy called the Kavanaugh hearings:
... [t]he historical low point in American politics – and make no mistake: this was all about politics, not Kavanaugh. If there was any doubt before, there is no longer: the American left today is malevolent. The Democratic Party has demonstrated for all to see just how soulless it has become. The Democrats on the committee disgraced themselves. The two youngsters, Harris and Booker, are callow, shallow, rude, and power-mad. We have seen what they are made of: pure narcissism.
But for Obama, they are the future of his America. New York University professor Jonathan Haidt notes that "diversity, immigration and multiculturalism are right at the heart of the problem in Western democracies[.] ... Identity politics is like throwing sand in the gears ... a world in which factions are based on race and ethnicity, rather than economic interests, that's the worst possible world."

Obama is not stupid. He knows this. It's his road map.

The Obama legacy of hatred among identity groups is a viral cancer in our society. It pits race, ethnic, and religious groups against each other. It pits women against men. It is pitting gays and others who claim LGBTQ victimhood against heterosexuals. As this disease further metastasizes, our country faces an even more seriously divided future. It is pushing us toward tribalism, balkanization, and potentially, dissolution. The hatred of Trump by the left is deep. He is a forceful barrier to their destructive aims. We can't afford to lose him. But the question is whether even Trump can put the Obama legacy into remission and prevent the left from ripping our country further apart.

Image credit: Adapted from official White House photo by Pete Souza.

Frank Hawkins is a former U.S. Army intelligence officer, Associated Press foreign correspondent, international businessman, senior newspaper company executive, founder and owner of several marketing companies, and published novelist. He currently lives in retirement in North Carolina.


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Closed-door testimony yesterday revealed 'explosive' additional source used for FISA warrant to spy on Trump campaign - Thomas Lifson

by Thomas Lifson

Meanwhile, declassification of the FISA warrant applications is apparently being slow-walked. With a bit more than a month, there is still time before the midterms to reveal to the public the depth of the corruption.

While the nation's media are consumed with Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation, intrepid heroes Reps. Mark Meadows and Jim Jordan, leaders of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees, were grilling the former top lawyer of the FBI, James Baker, behind closed doors. Baker, recall, was the right-hand man of James Comey and was closely involved in the FISA warrants that authorized electronic surveillance of the Trump campaign and presidency. Baker has since left the FBI. Some speculate that he is cooperating, but he notably came to the hearing with a bevy of lawyers representing him and the FBI.

Screen grab: Fox News.

Catherine Herridge of Fox News was able to elicit some comment on the testimony from Reps. Meadows and Jordan, though it remains confidential for now:
"During the time that the FBI was putting – that DOJ and FBI were putting together the FISA (surveillance warrant) during the time prior to the election – there was another source giving information directly to the FBI, which we found the source to be pretty explosive," said Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio.
Meadows and Jordan would not elaborate on the source, or answer questions about whether the source was a reporter. They did stress that the source who provided information to the FBI's Russia case was not previously known to congressional investigators.
Baker is at the heart of surveillance abuse allegations, and his deposition lays the groundwork for next week's planned closed-door interview with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Baker, as the FBI's top lawyer, helped secure the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant on Page, as well as three subsequent renewals. Prior to the deposition, Republican investigators said they believed Baker could explain why information about the British ex-spy behind a salacious Trump-related dossier, Christopher Steele, and Steele's apparent bias against then-candidate Trump, were withheld from the FISA court, and whether other exculpatory information was known to Rosenstein when he signed the final FISA renewal for Page in June 2017.
Fox News asked Baker after the deposition about the handling of the Trump dossier, what he told Rosenstein about exculpatory evidence, and whether he is the subject of an FBI leak investigation. Baker told Fox News he could not answer such questions.
John Solomon of The Hill, another ace reporter with good sources, has identified what may be the "explosive" source:
Congressional investigators have confirmed that a top FBI official met with Democratic Party lawyers to talk about allegations of Donald Trump-Russia collusion weeks before the 2016 election, and before the bureau secured a search warrant targeting Trump's campaign.
Former FBI general counsel James Baker met during the 2016 season with at least one attorney from Perkins Coie, the Democratic National Committee's private law firm.
That's the firm used by the DNC and Hillary Clinton's campaign to secretly pay research firm Fusion GPS and Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence operative, to compile a dossier of uncorroborated raw intelligence alleging Trump and Moscow were colluding to hijack the presidential election.
The dossier, though mostly unverified, was then used by the FBI as the main evidence seeking a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant targeting the Trump campaign in the final days of the campaign.
The revelation was confirmed both in contemporaneous evidence and testimony secured by a joint investigation by Republicans on the House Judiciary and Government Oversight committees, my source tells me.
It means the FBI had good reason to suspect the dossier was connected to the DNC's main law firm and was the product of a Democratic opposition-research effort to defeat Trump – yet failed to disclose that information to the FISA court in October 2016, when the bureau applied for a FISA warrant to surveil Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.
Sundance of Conservative Treehouse comments:
The fact that FBI officials were meeting with a lawyer representing the interests of a presidential candidate to frame investigative material against the candidate's opposition is a serious issue. Then again, with overwhelming evidence highlighting the plot – by now everyone accepts this corrupt activity took place within the FBI under James Comey to the secret benefit of the Hillary Clinton campaign.
Of course the use of Perkins Coie lawyers as a go-between provides Clinton plausible deniability. Every corrupt behavior in Clinton world is based on plausible deniability and parseltongue use of obfuscated language.
Additionally Joint Committee republican representative Mark Meadows told The Hill's new morning television show, Rising, there is evidence the FBI had human sources secretly recording members of the Trump campaign:
"There's a strong suggestion that confidential human sources actually taped members within the Trump campaign," Meadows told Hill.TV hosts Krystal Ball and Ned Ryun. (link)
If true, and if it can be proved, this puts an even bigger shadow over the insufferably corrupt institutional behavior already identified within the DOJ and FBI under the Obama administration.
Meanwhile, declassification of the FISA warrant applications is apparently being slow-walked. With a bit more than a month, there is still time before the midterms to reveal to the public the depth of the corruption.

Thomas Lifson


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US official: All signs indicate Iran increasingly pursuing nuclear weapons - News Agencies and Israel Hayom Staff

by News Agencies and Israel Hayom Staff 

Rogue regime poses "particular ‎threat in the volatile Middle East," National Security Adviser John Bolton says

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton at the White House, 
Photo: Reuters 

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton on ‎Wednesday warned ‎that not only is Iran not ‎dismantling its nuclear program, it is increasingly ‎pursuing the development of nuclear weapons and ‎‎continues to threaten international peace and ‎‎security. ‎

Speaking with reporters, Bolton called Iran a "rogue ‎regime" and "a particular ‎threat in the volatile ‎Middle East." ‎

He noted that ‎the U.S. is pulling out of a decades-old treaty with ‎Iran that affirmed friendly ‎relations between the ‎two nations.‎

The Trump administration announced Wednesday that it ‎was withdrawing from two international agreements ‎after Iran and the Palestinians complained to the ‎International Court of Justice about U.S. policies.‎

The ICJ, also known as the World Court, is the ‎principal judicial body of the United Nations. It ‎settles legal disputes between member states and its ‎rulings are binding. ‎

On Wednesday, the court ordered the U.S. to partially ‎lift the sanctions it imposed on Iran and ensure ‎they do not affect the humanitarian aid delivered to ‎the Islamic republic or its civil aviation ‎safety.‎

Although largely symbolic, the U.S.'s decision to ‎withdraw from the ‎1955 Treaty of Amity highlights ‎the deteriorating relations between Washington and ‎Tehran.‎

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday ‎that withdrawing from the accord was long overdue ‎and followed Iran "groundlessly" bringing a ‎complaint with the ICJ, which challenged U.S. ‎sanctions on the basis that they were a violation of ‎the pact.‎

Pompeo denounced the Iranian case before ‎the U.N. ‎court as "meritless" and said the Treaty of ‎Amity ‎was meaningless and absurd.‎

‎"The Iranians have been ignoring it for an awfully ‎‎long time, we ought to have pulled out of it decades ‎‎ago," he said.‎

Pompeo said the ruling was a "useful point for us to ‎‎demonstrate the absolute absurdity" of the treaty.‎

While the ICJ's ruling is legally binding, Pompeo said ‎‎the administration would proceed with sanctions ‎‎enforcement with existing exceptions for ‎‎humanitarian and flight safety transactions.‎

‎"The United States has been actively engaged on ‎‎these issues without regard to any proceeding before ‎‎the ICJ," he said.‎

At the same time, he criticized the ruling, saying, ‎‎"We're disappointed that the court failed to ‎‎recognize that it has no jurisdiction to issue any ‎‎order relating to these sanctions with the ‎‎United States."‎

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif ‎‎praised the court's ruling, saying that it ‎was ‎‎"another failure for sanctions-addicted" U.S. ‎and a ‎‎"victory for the rule of law." ‎

He said it was ‎imperative for other countries "to ‎collectively ‎counter malign U.S. unilateralism" and ‎accused the ‎U.S. of being an "outlaw regime."‎

Citing what he called "Iran's abuse of the ICJ," ‎‎Bolton later said the United States would also ‎withdraw ‎from the "optional protocol" under the 1961 ‎Vienna ‎Convention of Diplomatic Relations that Iran ‎or others, notably the Palestinians, could use to ‎sue the U.S. at The Hague-based tribunal.‎

‎"We will commence a review of all international ‎‎agreements that may still expose the United States ‎‎to purported binding jurisdiction, dispute ‎‎resolution in the International Court of Justice. ‎The United States will not sit idly by as baseless ‎politicized claims are brought against us," Bolton ‎said.

He cited a case brought to the court by the ‎‎"so-called state of Palestine" challenging the move ‎of the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to ‎Jerusalem as the main reason for withdrawing.‎

Bolton, who last month unleashed a torrent of ‎criticism against the International Criminal Court, ‎noted that previous Republican administrations had ‎pulled out of various international agreements and ‎bodies over "politicized cases." ‎

‎"This really has less to do with Iran and the ‎Palestinians than with the continued consistent ‎policy of the United States to reject the ‎jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice, ‎which we think is politicized and ineffective," ‎Bolton said.‎

‎"I'd like to stress," he added, "the United States ‎remains a party to the underlying Vienna Convention ‎on Diplomatic Relations and we expect all other ‎parties to abide by their international obligations ‎under the convention."‎

News Agencies and Israel Hayom Staff


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International Court of Justice Sides With the Mullahs - Joseph Klein

by Joseph Klein

And what Trump must do.

During his address to the United Nations General Assembly last week, President Trump rejected the notion of global governance institutions purporting to override national sovereignty. President Trump called out the International Criminal Court, which “has no legitimacy or authority,” he said. The president vowed to “never surrender America’s sovereignty” to such an “unelected, unaccountable” globalist body. The UN’s top court, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague, has just rendered a decision against the United States and in favor of Iran that demonstrates why President Trump is so correct. The ICJ judges ruled that some sanctions imposed by the Trump administration on the Iranian regime were inconsistent with the "Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations, and Consular Rights” between Iran and the United States, which was signed in Tehran in 1955 and entered into force in 1957. The ICJ disgracefully relied on this treaty to both assert jurisdiction over Iran’s complaint, and to decide at least provisionally in Iran’s favor on the merits. It ordered the immediate removal of U.S. sanctions on certain products for import into Iran, pending the court’s final decision in the case. President Trump must, as he is expected to do, disregard this disgraceful ruling, and any follow-on rulings. The ICJ decision is an affront to the United States’ sovereign right to decide what nations it chooses to do business with and which countries it decides not to do business with, for whatever reasons it chooses including national security.

Following the ICJ ruling, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the United States would cancel the treaty that anachronistically still includes “Amity” and “Consular Rights” in its title. That’s good, but unnecessary. The treaty is already dead as a result of the Iranian Islamist regime’s own gross violations of the treaty itself and of conventional international law principles, capped by the unlawful seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran and the detention of hostages under inhumane conditions by the regime’s supporters in 1979, which the regime endorsed.

The International Court of Justice’s entire rationale for its decision rests on this dead treaty. “The Court considers that the United States, in accordance with its obligations under the 1955 Treaty,” the ICJ declared unanimously, “must remove, by means of its choosing, any impediments arising from the measures announced on 8 May 2018 to the free exportation to the territory of Iran of goods required for humanitarian needs, such as (i) medicines and medical devices, and (ii) foodstuffs and agricultural commodities, as well as goods and services required for the safety of civil aviation, such as (iii) spare parts, equipment and associated services (including warranty, maintenance, repair services and safety-related inspections) necessary for civil aircraft. To this end, the United States must ensure that licences and necessary authorizations are granted and that payments and other transfers of funds are not subject to any restriction in so far as they relate to the goods and services referred to above.”

One of the ICJ judges, Cançado Trindade, wrote separately that “[T]he imperative of the realization of justice prevails over manifestations of a State’s ‘will,’” including any concerns a state may have about national security. He opined on the “evolutionary interpretation” of treaties that “contributed to the progressive development of international law.” In other words, an unaccountable globalist judge can simply make up “international law” as he or she wishes to suit the judge’s preferred progressive policy outcome. 

The ICJ claimed that “its orders on provisional measures have binding effect and create international legal obligations for any party to whom the provisional measures are addressed” – i.e., the United States. President Trump previewed his likely reaction to such usurpation of power by unaccountable globalist judges when he told the UN General Assembly last week that “America is governed by Americans.”

The ICJ’s reliance on the six decades-old Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations, and Consular Rights to reach its decision is a travesty. The judges claimed that they were implementing the provision in the treaty that authorizes them to interpret and apply the treaty in the event of a dispute between the parties. Judge Trindade laughably referred to Article I of the treaty to assist in his “interpretation” of its obligations: “There shall be firm and enduring peace and sincere friendship between the United States of America and Iran.” What friendship? Did he and his colleagues on the ICJ bench bother to read Article II (Paragraph 4) of the same treaty, for example, as part of their "interpretation," which states: “Nationals of either High Contracting Party shall receive the most constant protection and security within the territories of the other High Contracting Party.” Iran violated that provision.

Did Judge Trindade and his fellow ICJ jurists bother to read Article XIII, which contains specific protections for the consular representatives of each High Contracting Party while in the territory of the other High Contracting Party as well as for the physical premises of consular offices? Article XIII prohibits the examination or seizure of the papers deposited in such offices by local authorities. Iran violated that provision too.

Most importantly, have these international judges been in hibernation for the last 39 years? The treaty they relied on for their pro-Iran decision is a dead letter because the Iranian regime has blatantly violated its very core ever since the Islamists came to power in 1979. The Iranian regime was not so concerned about “amity” and “consular rights” when its supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini proclaimed back in 1979 the Iranian state's endorsement of both the seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran and the detention of hostages by the regime’s supporters without any of the protections outlined in the treaty. The regime refused to take part in proceedings that the United States had brought before the ICJ because of this illegal seizure and detention. The regime rejected the ICJ’s judgment against it, claiming that the ICJ had no jurisdiction over the matter. It refused to take responsibility for directly compensating the hostages for physical and emotional harm inflicted on them during their captivity.

In short, there is nothing left to interpret or apply in a treaty hollowed out of its essential purpose by the Iranian regime’s consistent pattern of significant violations that it has never acknowledged. Even if there were something left for the ICJ to interpret or apply, which there is not, Article XX (Paragraph 1) of the treaty entitles either party to apply measures to protect its essential security interests. The ICJ attempted to dismiss U.S. national security concerns when it comes to the importation and purchase of goods said to be required for humanitarian needs and of spare parts, equipment and associated services (including warranty, maintenance, repair services and safety-related inspections) said to be necessary for civil aircraft.

Contrary to what they might think, however, international judges sitting in The Hague do not get to define for a sovereign nation what is or is not a legitimate security concern of that nation. Exploiting dual-use capabilities, the Iranian regime has a habit of combining military and civilian aviation components. Earlier this year it was reported, for example, that an Iranian civilian airline was being used to transport weapons into Lebanon for use by the terrorist group Hezbollah and Iranian weapons factories. The corrupt Iranian regime has also created artificial shortages of medical supplies in the past through what its own former Iranian minister of health described as government mismanagement of medicinal imports.  Even so, the importation of foodstuffs and medical supplies is subject to exemption under the measures imposed by the Trump administration. The ICJ summarily rejected assurances by the U.S. State Department to work to ameliorate legitimate humanitarian concerns, an action by the ICJ that itself demonstrates the anti-U.S. animus of the ICJ judges.

While the International Court of Justice judges arrogantly issued their ruling with their heads in the sand, President Trump has operated in the real world when it comes to the malignant behavior of the Iranian regime. In his remarks at the United Nations Security Council briefing on counter-proliferation last week, President Trump said that the “Iranian regime exports violence, terror, and turmoil. It illicitly procures sensitive items to advance its ballistic missile program.” He said that new sanctions will be added to those already in place, warning of “severe consequences” for any “individual or entity who fails to comply with these sanctions.”

The last thing that will deter President Trump from following through with his sanctions program against the Iranian regime is a bogus ruling by an unaccountable globalist governance body based on a treaty that is no longer valid because of the Iranian regime’s blatant violations of its core provisions.

Joseph Klein is a Harvard-trained lawyer and the author of Global Deception: The UN’s Stealth Assault on America’s Freedom and Lethal Engagement: Barack Hussein Obama, the United Nations & Radical Islam.


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Israeli minister: We can defeat Russian S-300 air shield in Syria - Reuters and Israel Hayom Staff

by Reuters and Israel Hayom Staff

"The operational abilities of the IAF are such that those [S-300] batteries really do not constrain the air force's abilities to act," says Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi, referring to Israel's stealth F-35 jets, supplied by the U.S.

Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi
Photo: Dudi Vaaknin 

Minister of Regional Cooperation Tzachi Hanegbi downplayed the impact of Russia's recent delivery S-300 air defense systems to Syria, saying Wednesday that Israel's stealth fighters could defeat the new upgraded system and possibly destroy it on the ground.

On Tuesday, Moscow announced that it had delivered the S-300 to Syria, a decision it took after accusing Israel of being responsible for the downing of a Russian spy plane by Syrian forces. The Syrian missile that downed the Russian plane and killed all 15 crew members was fired in response to an Israeli airstrike last month.

Damascus and Moscow have described the addition of S-300 batteries to Syria's arsenal as a major deterrent. Israel and Washington have both voiced misgivings about the S-300 handover.

But asked in an interview if the Syrian acquisition of the S-300 would clip the IDF's wings, Hanegbi said: "Unequivocally, no."

"The operational abilities of the Israeli Air Force are such that those [S-300] batteries really do not constrain the air force's abilities to act," he told Army Radio.

Referring to F-35 Joint Strike Fighters that Israel began receiving from the United States over a year ago, Hanegbi said: "You know that we have stealth fighters, the best planes in the world. These batteries are not even able to detect them."

Reuters reported in 2015 that Israel had trained to confront a Russian-supplied S-300 system in Greece.

Israel says its air raids on Syria are needed to foil deployments and arms transfers by Iran or Lebanon's Hezbollah terrorist group, allies of Damascus.

Hanegbi said that Russia had previously stationed its own S-300 batteries in Syria, so the system's capabilities had long been factored into Israel's defensive planning. Syria's military would require "a few months" to get its S-300 operational, he said.

"We have clarified to the Syrians more than once that we will not step back from our commitment to prevent Iran's entrenchment in Syria," Hanegbi said, adding a veiled threat to take action against the S-300 on the ground: "We were already forced, a few months ago, to destroy Syrian missile batteries, and I hope they won't challenge us in the future."

In a rare announcement last month, Israel confirmed it had carried out more than 200 airstrikes in Syria over the last two years – at an average rate of twice a week – with Russia largely turning a blind eye. There have been no reports of such missions since the Russian plane was shot down on Sept. 17, however.

Hanegbi said that this hiatus was a "tactical situation" rather than a strategic reassessment by Israel.

Asked if Iran and its allies had used this lull to step up their activities in Syria, Hanegbi said he had seen "no basis for that" in Israeli intelligence assessments.

Reuters and Israel Hayom Staff


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Is Criticizing Terrorism "Mental Illness"? - Guy Millière

by Guy Millière

Even if Le Pen is not sent to prison, the law seems to have been used to open the possibility of declaring her ineligible for the European Parliament elections scheduled for May 2019.

  • A 615-page report was recently released, written by an adviser to President Emmanuel Macron, Hakim El Karoui, who is in charge of designing the new institutions of an "Islam of France." The report defines Islamism as an "ideology totally distinct from Islam" and also never addresses the links between Islamism and terrorism. The report also insists on the urgent need to spread "true Islam" in France and adopt the teaching of Arabic in public high schools.
  • The court's request, for Marine Le Pen to undergo a psychiatric evaluation to determine if she is sane, indicates that French authorities might be reviving the old Soviet use of "psychiatry" to silence dissidents or political opponents.
  • The legal offensive against Marine Le Pen was actually added to the financial offensive. Even if Le Pen is not sent to prison, the law seems to have been used to open the possibility of declaring her ineligible for the European Parliament elections scheduled for May 2019.
Marine Le Pen (pictured at podium), the leader of France's right-wing National Front Party, posted tweets critical of the Islamic State terrorist group, including photos of their murdered victims. For this, she was charged with the crime of "disseminating violent images," and ordered by a court to undergo a psychiatric evaluation to determine if she is sane. (Photo by Sylvain Lefevre/Getty Images)

On December 16, 2015, a French journalist on a mainstream radio station compared France's right-wing National Front Party to the Islamic State (ISIS) by saying that there is a "community of spirit" between them and that both push those who support them to "withdraw into their own identity". Marine Le Pen, the president of the National Front party, speaking of a "unacceptable verbal slippage," asked the radio station for the right to answer. She then published on Twitter images showing the bodies of victims of the Islamic State and adding: "ISIS is this!"

The French media immediately accused her of broadcasting "indecent" and "obscene" images, and shortly after that, the French government ordered the Department of Justice to indict her. On November 8, 2017 the French national assembly also lifted her parliamentary immunity.

A few months later, a judge mandated by the French government, charged Marine Le Pen with "disseminating violent images," citing article 227-24 of the French Penal Code, which defines the crime of:
"... disseminating... a message of a violent nature, inciting terrorism, pornographic or likely to seriously violate human dignity or to incite minors to engage in games that physically endanger them, or to commercialize such a message."
As part of the proceedings, Marine Le Pen received a letter from the court ordering her to undergo a psychiatric evaluation to determine if she is sane. She refused, saying that showing horrors committed by the Islamic State is not incitement to murder, and that pictures of victims of terrorism cannot be equated with pornography.

The court's request indicates that the French authorities might be reviving the old Soviet use of "psychiatry" to silence dissidents or political opponents.

At the moment, Le Pen can be arrested anywhere, at any time and could face up to five years in prison.

As a presidential candidate in May 2017, she received 34% of the vote in the second round of voting. Sending her to jail could provoke anger among her supporters, so her arrest is not expected.

What seems more probable is an effort to intimidate her, and if possible, to destroy her politically. A few weeks ago, the French government asked magistrates responsible for investigating "financial crimes" to seize two million euros ($2.3 million) of public funds granted to Marine Le Pen's party, which has since ceased almost all public activities. The legal offensive against Marine Le Pen was actually added to the financial offensive. Even if Le Pen is not sent to prison, the law seems to have been used to open the possibility of declaring her ineligible for the European Parliament elections scheduled for May 2019.

French President Emmanuel Macron knows that today, Le Pen's party is his main opposition in France and that Le Pen is his main political opponent. He describes himself as the champion of the "progressive" vision of Europe and the main enemy of those who want to resist Islamization, uncontrolled immigration, and who wish to defend national sovereignty -- views he has described as "leprosy" and "evil winds". He has verbally blasted Italian Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, as well as Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, who are creating a European alliance of nationalist movements that include Le Pen's party. On the contrary, Macron supports European sanctions against Hungary and Poland if they refuse to accept more migrants.

Macron sees that a victory of the Salvini-Orban alliance would not only be a humiliation for him, but that a victory of Le Pen's party in France could mean the final collapse of his crumbling presidency (his approval rating, which has fallen 6 points in the last month, now stands at 23%). He cannot crush the Salvini-Orban alliance, but he can affect the political process in France.

Macron's stance against Le Pen might also be an attempt by his government to ward off more Islamic violence in France. Presently, books and publications that reference the violent dimension inherent in Islam are boycotted and absent from bookstores (the Quran, however, is still widely available). Organizations that fight the Islamization of France and Europe are judicially harassed. Pierre Cassen and Christine Tasin, the leaders of the main French anti-Islamization website, Riposte Laïque ("Secular Response"), must spend a disproportionate amount of time in court and are heavily fined on a regular basis. To avoid having their website closed down, they have had to relocate their website outside both France and the European Union.

A 615-page report was recently released, written by an adviser to Macron, Hakim El Karoui, who is in charge of designing the new institutions of an "Islam of France." The report defines Islamism as an "ideology totally distinct from Islam" and also never addresses the links between Islamism and terrorism. The report also insists on the urgent need to spread "true Islam" in France and adopt the teaching of Arabic in public high schools.

In the French media, any mention of the links between Islam and violence has now been almost completely eliminated. When a Muslim commits a knife attack and shouts "Allahu Akbar" ("Allah is the greatest"), the official message published even before any investigation invariably declares that what happened had "nothing to do with Islam" and "no terrorist character". All the media then blindly quote the message. In the most recent attack of this kind, on September 9 in Paris, seven people were wounded, four seriously.

Recently, the author Éric Zemmour spoke on television of the high proportion of young Muslims among France's prison inmates, and of the rise of Muslim anti-Semitism in France's suburbs. The Conseil supérieur de l'audiovisuel (CSA), France's TV and radio regulator, told the station that Zemmour had uttered "stigmatizing remarks about Muslims" and that the station would suffer huge consequences if he ever repeated them. A French talk show host began circulating a petition demanding that Zemmour be totally excluded from the French media. The petition drew more than 300,000 signatures in one week.

Zemmour wondered if the Soviet gulag would have to be reopened especially for him or if he would have to choose self-exile. He received so many credible death threats that he is now under round-the-clock police protection.

The political scientist Jean-Yves Camus said that although he does not agree with Marine Le Pen's views, "Everywhere and always, saying of a political opponent that he is 'crazy' opens the doors of totalitarianism".

A lawyer, Regis de Castelnau, wrote in the monthly Causeur:
"There is a country in Europe where the main opposition party, after the seizure of its financial resources, sees its president asked to undergo a judicial psychiatric assessment. Is it Putin's Russia or Orban's Hungary? No. It is France".
Castelnau added that the law used to charge Marine Le Pen is usually used to indict "perverts" and "psychopaths," and that "psychiatric expertise" was only asked for because their criminal sentences were often accompanied by an obligation to receive psychiatric treatment.

"All those who laugh at the troubles of their political opponents," he said, "would be wise to remember that if they accept attacks on political liberties, it could soon be their turn."

Dr. Guy Millière a professor at the University of Paris, is the author of 27 books on France and Europe.


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An opportunity to effect change - Eldad Beck

by Eldad Beck

A troubling trend has surfaced in Germany-Israel ties in which Germany sees fit to intervene in Israel's domestic affairs. Berlin must understand that it cannot impose its idea of how ‎Israel should be.

In March 2008, German Chancellor Angela Merkel ‎addressed the Knesset and unequivocally stated that ‎Israel's right to exist and its security are part of ‎Germany's supreme national interest. ‎

It was not the first time that the chancellor voiced ‎such a commitment, but saying so in the Israeli ‎parliament lent her declaration tremendous ‎resonance. Merkel was the first foreign prime ‎minister to address the Knesset – an honor usually ‎reserved only for heads of state – and she was the ‎first foreign dignitary to visit Israel to mark 60 ‎years since its inception.‎

Ten years have passed since then, and today the ‎question of what Merkel meant when she spoke of ‎Israel's right to exist as part of Germany's ‎national interest is more poignant than ever. ‎

Does Germany stand with Israel because of a sense of ‎historic obligation to preserve the memory of the ‎terrible crime committed by the Germans against the ‎Jewish people, and recognizes the right of the Jews ‎living in Israel to determine their own fate on the ‎basis of that terrible historical memory? ‎

Or is it that Germany is perhaps assuming the right ‎to decide for the Jewish people in the land of ‎Israel what its future will be?‎

It seems that a troubling trend has taken over the ‎German establishment's approach toward Israel, by ‎which Berlin sees Israel as something of a ‎problematic colony that refuses to accept the burden ‎of the central government in Berlin or Brussels.‎

This is not a new phenomenon; it actually dates back ‎to the days when Likud came to power in 1977, 12 ‎years after the establishment of ‎diplomatic relations between Israel and West Germany.‎

Germany got along with "pioneering" Israel much ‎better. The problems began when socialist, secular, ‎Israel gave way to a national, religious Israel, one ‎that is not a member of the Socialist International ‎and insisted on its rights without overly ‎considering what other nations had to say about it.‎

At first, official Germany refrained from voicing ‎its displeasure with Israel's conduct, but in recent ‎years, under Merkel, Germany has allowed itself to ‎cross line after line and intervene – in a rather ‎insolent manner – in Israel's internal affairs, ‎ostensibly out of concern for the future the Jewish ‎state.‎

Political organizations and private foundations ‎promote the interests of Israeli parties opposed to ‎the policies of the elected right-wing government ‎and actively oppose laws passed by the current ‎Israeli government; German government ministries ‎fund bodies that opposed Israel's existence as a ‎Jewish state and encourage boycotts against it; ‎German diplomats vote against Israel in various U.N. ‎bodies; and not one word about Germany's ‎mobilization to save UNRWA, the Palestinian ‎refugees' aid agency whose sole purpose is to ‎perpetuate Palestinian refugeedom despite the fact ‎it undermines Israel.‎

Seeking to preserve the unique relations between the ‎two countries, previous Israeli governments came to ‎terms with this situation. In hindsight, however, ‎this created a situation in which Germany is attuned ‎only with the "peace-seeking" Israeli Left, which ‎nostalgically adheres to the notion of "pioneering ‎Israel" and refuses to see the "new Israel." ‎

Merkel and the rest of her cabinet must understand ‎that the economic and technological miracle they so ‎admire in Israel has been made possible by the many ‎changes Israel has undergone in recent years.‎

As Merkel's fourth term as chancellor will most ‎likely be her last, the most significant ‎contribution she can currently make to the future ‎relations between Israel and Germany is to foster an ‎open dialogue into the many problems plaguing these ‎ties. ‎

But this should not be done in a patronizing way, ‎rather with openness and the understanding that this ‎is the only way in which to ensure solid, warm long-term relations between Germany and Israel. ‎

Most of all, however, it is time for Germany to ‎recognize Israel as it is, as it cannot impose on ‎Israel Germany's notion of what it thinks Israel ‎should be.‎

Eldad Beck


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