Archive for Germany

Hamburg-sur-Seine

They held a rally in Paris the other day for the three kidnapped Israeli kids. It was attacked, of course.

Yesterday, France; today, Germany:

An 83-year-old German man was assaulted while participating in a rally on Friday in Hamburg to raise awareness for the three abducted Israeli yeshiva students.

The assault was reported by the German Jewish news website Judische Allgemine that quoted Dieter Graumann, the President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, who condemned the attack on Monday.

“The fact that here in Germany such pure hatred of Israel culminates in assaults, is frightening and extremely worrying. We wish the injured a speedy recovery and trust that the authorities quickly identify the perpetrators and hold them accountable,” Graumann was quoted as saying.

The 83-year-old victim who was brought to hospital for treatment was pushed to the ground so violently that he suffered a head-wound and was unable to walk, according to the Judische Allgemeine.

When the victim’s daughter tried to help her father she was also kicked by the counter-demonstrators, according to the report.

To say that Europe has a problem is to state a proposition that is millennia old, and in no need of further proof.

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America the Risible

Reader Yerushalimey alerted us to these images from Carnival in Germany:

We found a few more:

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Contrast with:

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We are the ones they’ve been waiting for?

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I Don’t See the Problem

Just another anti-Jewish caricature, complete with tentacles and a big nose.

So?

A caricature of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in Germany’s largest broadsheet newspaper shows anti-Semitism reminiscent of the Nazi propaganda, say critics.

The cartoon, in the liberal Süddeutsche Zeitung, depicts Mark Zuckerberg as an octopus with a hook nose devouring the world’s technology. It appeared in the Friday edition of the Munich-based paper along with the International New York Times. The drawing of the 29-year-old Zuckerberg comes on the heels of Facebook’s $19 billion purchase of the messaging startup company WhatsApp.

“The cartoon is starkly reminiscent of a 1938 Nazi cartoon depicting Winston Churchill as a Jewish octopus encircling the globe,” said Efraim Zuroff, of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. “And if anyone has any doubts about the anti-Semitic dimension of the cartoon, we can point to Mark Zuckerberg’s very prominent nose, which is not the case in real life. Absolutely disgusting!”

The caption under the cartoon, drawn by Burkhard Mohr, says in German “Krake-Zuckerberg” which translates as “Octopus-Zuckerberg.”

The cartoon echoed a theme “reminiscent of Nazi propaganda which sought to warn Germany of the threat posed by Jews/world Jewry, and in a certain sense particularly by those Jews who had assimilated into German society, and could not be automatically identified as such,” Zuroff said.

Like the Nazis, huh? The Nazis of the West Bank and Gaza:

A Palestinian Authority Ministry of Education monthly periodical chose to include an essay written by a PA teacher describing Israel’s creation as an attack by “an enemy like an octopus… with burning flames shooting out from between its fangs”[.]

[Do octopi have fangs?]

“The Meccan [Quran] chapter entitled ‘Jews’ or ‘Children of Israel’ is remarkable… It’s about today’s Jews, those of our century, and speaks only of extermination and digging graves… This chapter sentences the Jews to extermination before a single Jew existed on earth… Palestine’s blessing is linked to destruction of the center of global corruption [Jews of Israel], the snake’s head. When the snake’s head of [global] corruption is cut off, here in Palestine, and when the octopus’ [Jew's] tentacles are cut off around the world, the real blessing will come with the destruction of the Jews, here in Palestine, and it is one of the splendid real blessings in Palestine.”

“The Zionist octopus’ arms reach out in every direction…”

Host: “The Israelis – or, moreover, the occupation, the Zionists – are pushing us to finally give in to them, that Haifa does not belong to me, I give it up. Haifa does not belong to us, Acre does not belong to us, Acre doesn’t belong to us, Jaffa does not belong to us. Like they demand that all of Palestine does not belong to us. This ancient olive tree also does not belong to us; We will give it up for Israel. You lived through the revolutions; how do you see Palestine right now?”

Mustafa: “Israel is an octopus; it is not satisfied with a little, or with a lot.

Like those Nazis you mean? Europe and the West seem to have no problem with those Nazis. What’s the diff? [All citations courtesy of Palestinian Media Watch.]

PS: Did the International NEW YORK TIMES really run the cartoon? I couldn’t find it.

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Obama’s Very Own Stasi

Merkel is not too happy

In an angry exchange with Barack Obama, Angela Merkel has compared the snooping practices of the US with those of the Stasi, the ubiquitous and all-powerful secret police of the communist dictatorship in East Germany, where she grew up.

The German chancellor also told the US president that America’s National Security Agency cannot be trusted because of the volume of material it had allowed to leak to the whistleblower Edward Snowden, according to the New York Times.

Livid after learning from Der Spiegel magazine that the Americans were listening in to her personal mobile phone, Merkel confronted Obama with the accusation: “This is like the Stasi.”

The newspaper also reported that Merkel was particularly angry that, based on the disclosures, “the NSA clearly couldn’t be trusted with private information, because they let Snowden clean them out.”

Sounds about right.

- Aggie

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Who’s the Traitor?

That was then:

This is now:

Edward J. Snowden, the fugitive American security contractor granted temporary asylum by Russia, has appealed to Washington to stop treating him like a traitor for revealing that the United States has been eavesdropping on its allies, a German politician who met with Mr. Snowden said on Friday.

Mr. Snowden made his appeal in a letter that was carried to Berlin by Hans-Christian Ströbele, a veteran member of the Green Party in the German Parliament. Mr. Ströbele said he and two journalists for German news outlets met with Mr. Snowden and a person described as his assistant — probably his British aide, Sarah Harrison — at an undisclosed location in or near Moscow on Thursday for almost three hours.

Mr. Ströbele had gone to Moscow to explore whether Mr. Snowden could or would testify before a planned parliamentary inquiry into the eavesdropping.

In his letter, Mr. Snowden, 30, also appealed for clemency. He said his disclosures about American intelligence activity at home and abroad, which he called “systematic violations of law by my government that created a moral duty to act,” have had positive effects.

Yet “my government continues to treat dissent as defection, and seeks to criminalize political speech with felony charges that provide no defense,” Mr. Snowden wrote. “However, speaking the truth is not a crime. I am confident that with the support of the international community, the government of the United States will abandon this harmful behavior.”

Germans—and everyone else—ask Obama: how could you do this to us? We were so into you. He understands your feelings. Not your outrage, but your adulation. You weren’t into him half as much as he was into himself. Eavesdropping was just a version of the old line: enough about me—what do you think about me?

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What Did the President Know

And when did he know it?

The US National Security Agency was forced on Sunday to deny that its director ever discussed a surveillance operation against the German chancellor with President Barack Obama, as the White House tried to contain a full-scale diplomatic crisis over espionage directed at allied countries.

The Obama administration appeared in disarray as it struggled with the fallout over the disclosure that the National Security Agency monitored the phone conversations of at least 35 world leaders, and that the phone of the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, had been monitored.

Early on Sunday, the White House refused to comment on an overnight report in the German tabloid Bild, which alleged that Obama was personally briefed about by the operation to target Merkel’s phone by the NSA’s director, Keith Alexander, and allowed it to continue.

That appeared to conflict with a second report, in the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. It said that when Obama spoke to Merkel over the phone on Wednesday, he assured the German leader he had not previously known her phone had been monitored.

Der Bild ain’t buyin’:

President Barack Obama personally authorised the phone tapping of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s mobile because he wanted to ‘know everything’ about the world’s most powerful woman, it was claimed on Sunday.

Bild newspaper in Germany – which also reported surveilance on the phone of her predecessor Gerhard Schroeder who opposed the war in Iraq – called US denials of eavesdropping ‘diplomatic lies’ as new documents from the Nation security Agency in Washington suggest the bugging against the politicians began at least ten years ago, during the Bush administration.

Bild quoted a secret intelligence source saying the president was informed in 2010 about the operation against Merkel by NSA boss Keith Alexander and he sanctioned it.

‘Obama did not stop the action at that time but allowed it to continue,’ said an intelligence official familiar with the NSA operation against Merkel image on Sunday.

‘Obama did not stop the action but rather furthered it,’ said the Bild informant.

So, Obama did—or did not—know that Merkel’s phone was tapped.

Just as he did—or did not—know that Healthcare.gov was an online Chernobyl.

Hmm, he dowsn’t seem to be as smart as advertised. He’s not as articulate, either, when off teleprompter. I’m beginning to wonder how clean he is.


You BETTER be sweatin’!

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Do You Like Apples?


Well, I have all y’all numbers. How do you like them apples?

The National Security Agency monitored the phone conversations of 35 world leaders after being given the numbers by an official in another US government department, according to a classified document provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The confidential memo reveals that the NSA encourages senior officials in its “customer” departments, such as the White House, State and the Pentagon, to share their “Rolodexes” so the agency can add the phone numbers of leading foreign politicians to their surveillance systems.

The document notes that one unnamed US official handed over 200 numbers, including those of the 35 world leaders, none of whom is named. These were immediately “tasked” for monitoring by the NSA.

The revelation is set to add to mounting diplomatic tensions between the US and its allies, after the German chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday accused the US of tapping her mobile phone.

Hell hath no fury:

The revelations are threatening to create a major rift between the US and its European allies. The former Belgian prime minister Guy Verhofstadt told BBC Radio 4′s Today programme that such activities had to be curtailled. “There is no reason to spy on Angela Merkel. It’s a real scandal,” he said. “A new agreement is needed between the EU and the US; this cannot continue.”

Despite US efforts to placate Merkel – including a phonecall made by the US president, Barack Obama, on Wednesday – she has refused to conceal her anger over the issue. “We need trust among allies and partners,” Merkel told reporters in Brussels on Thursday. “Such trust now has to be built anew. This is what we have to think about.”

Although the US and Europe were allies facing the same challenges, she said, “such an alliance can only be built on trust. That’s why I repeat again: spying among friends, that cannot be.” She added: “It’s become clear that for the future, something must change – and significantly.

“We will put all efforts into forging a joint understanding by the end of the year for the co-operation of the [intelligence] agencies between Germany and the US and France and the US, to create a framework for the co-operation.”

Her sentiments were echoed by the French president, François Hollande. “What is at stake is preserving our relations with the United States,” he said. “They should not be changed because of what has happened. But trust has to be restored and reinforced.”

What do you want to bet that Obama’s abject apology to Merkel sounded something like this?

Besides, Angie, you know he’s never shy about speaking in Germany!

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Angela Merkel Is The First German PM To Visit Dachau?!

None of them have visiting Dachau until today.

Angela Merkel laid a wreath at Dachau concentration camp on Tuesday, making her the first German chancellor to visit the death camp where Nazis killed more than 41,000 people in the Holocaust.

Taking a pause in her campaign for a third term in office, the chancellor met survivors, including Abba Naor, an 85-year-old Jew whose mother and 5-year-old brother were murdered in concentration camps along with dozens more relatives.

“Merkel is coming here to say we will never forget what happened here,” the Lithuanian-born former inmate said.

The Nazis set up Dachau, near Munich, in 1933, weeks after Adolf Hitler took power, to detain political rivals. It became the prototype for a network of camps where 6 million Jews were murdered, as well as Roma, Russians, Poles and homosexuals.

More than 200,000 people had been detained in the camp by the time US troops liberated it in 1945. Television footage showing piles of bodies and starved inmates in the camp was among the first images the world saw of the Holocaust crimes.

The chilling motto “Arbeit macht frei” (Work makes you free) on the main gate to Dachau still greets the 800,000 annual visitors to the camp, where Merkel spoke to a small group survivors in the camp’s parade ground, surrounded by drab grey barracks and watchtowers.

“The name Dachau is tragically famous as it serves as a model for the concentration camps,” the chancellor said. “The memory of that fate fills me with deep sadness and shame.”

As far as I am concerned, every German man, woman and child should be required to visit Dachau, preferably naked in the winter, for one full week per year, until the end of time. They should eat what the inmates ate and they should work like the inmates worked. They should even see similar “doctors”. I am absolutely appalled that the first visit to Dachau by a German PM didn’t happen until now. What disgraceful people.

WAR & CONFLICT BOOK ERA:  WORLD WAR II/WAR IN THE WEST/THE HOLOCAUST

- Aggie

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Another Memorial

The Nazis killed Jews, Gypsies, homosexuals, Catholics—you name it.

But we can’t forget these people:

Work has begun on a memorial in Germany for the 300,000 people murdered by the Nazis for having mental and physical disabilities or chronic illnesses.

A 30m (100ft) long glass wall is being built in the centre of Berlin, near the former site of the Nazi-era office that organised the “euthanasia” programme.

In 1939, Adolf Hitler told officials that people “considered incurable” should be “granted a mercy killing”.

The programme ended officially in 1941, but continued covertly until 1945.

At first, personnel killed people by starvation and lethal injection. They later used gas chambers at killing centres in Germany and Austria.

The programme, also known as Action T4, is considered a precursor to the Holocaust, during which millions of Jews were killed.

On Monday, Germany’s State Minister for Culture, Bernd Neumann, said educating people about the Nazis’ crimes and honouring their victims remained an obligation for the country.

In recent years, memorials have been constructed in Berlin for Jewish, Roma (Gypsy) and homosexual victims of the Nazis.

Interesting how Hitler’s language (“mercy killing”) sounds like Margaret Sanger’s. She believed in “assist[ing] the race toward the elimination of the unfit.” But even the morally dubious founder of Planned Parenthood never foresaw the evil that would be done in her compromised name: “abortion was the wrong way no matter how early it was performed it was taking life”.

At least the Germans have apologized.

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Funny Pages

You can take the Nazi out of the Germans, but… well, no, maybe you can’t:

A German newspaper has expressed regret after publishing a cartoon that appeared to depict the state of Israel as a ravenous monster.

Munich-based Sueddeutsche Zeitung says the picture appeared Tuesday alongside two reviews of books about Israel.

The caption suggested that the Jewish state was seen by its enemies as akin to Moloch — a monstrous deity from the Old Testament to whom followers sacrificed their children.

Israel’s ambassador in Berlin criticized the picture and Jewish groups denounced it as anti-Semitic.

The newspaper said in a brief statement on its website Wednesday that it regretted “misunderstandings” caused by the caption and that publishing the cartoon “was a mistake.”

The picture had been taken from a stock library and originally wasn’t intended as a depiction of Israel.

No? Then what a coincidence!

Those are Arab variations on a theme. This is more like the original theme:

Of all the bad luck to make such a “mistake”, a “misunderstanding”!

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President Obama Unites the World

In fear and loathing:

Top secret documents detail the mass scope of efforts by the United States to spy on Germany and Europe. Each month, the NSA monitors a half a billion communications and EU buildings are bugged. The scandal poses a threat to trans-Atlantic relations.

Four-star General Keith Alexander — who is today the NSA director and America’s highest-ranking cyber warrior as thie chief of the US Cyber Command — defined these challenges. Given the cumulative technological eavesdropping capacity, he asked during a 2008 visit to Menwith Hill, Britain’s largest listening station near Harrogate in Yorkshire, “Why can’t we collect all the signals all the time?”

All the signals all the time. Wouldn’t that be the NSA’s ideal haystack? So what would the needle be? A trail to al-Qaida, an industrial facility belonging to an enemy state, plans prepared by international drug dealers or even international summit preparations being made by leading politicians of friendly nations? Whatever the target, it would be determined on a case by case basis. What is certain, however, is that the haystack would always be there to deliver.

The whole episode is a fiasco for the NSA which, in contrast to the CIA, has long been able to conduct its spying without drawing much public attention. Snowden has done “irreversible and significant damage” to US national security, Alexander told ABC a week ago. Snowden’s NSA documents contain more than one or two scandals. They are a kind of digital snapshot of the world’s most powerful intelligence agency’s work over a period of around a decade. SPIEGEL has seen and reviewed a series of documents from the archive.

The documents prove that Germany played a central role in the NSA’s global surveillance network — and how the Germans have also become targets of US attacks. Each month, the US intelligence service saves data from around half a billion communications connections from Germany.

No one is safe from this mass spying — at least almost no one. Only one handpicked group of nations is excluded — countries that the NSA has defined as close friends, or “2nd party,” as one internal document indicates. They include the UK, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. A document classified as “top secret” states that, “The NSA does NOT target its 2nd party partners, nor request that 2nd parties do anything that is inherently illegal for NSA to do.”

But the new aspect of the revelations isn’t that countries are trying to spy on each other, eavesdropping on ministers and conducting economic espionage. What is most important about the documents is that they reveal the possibility of the absolute surveillance of a country’s people and foreign citizens without any kind of effective controls or supervision.

We’re all Americans now! Everybody gets spied on, from Frankfurt, Kentucky to Frankfurt, Germany. Billions of people under surveillance—we should form our own country, call it Snoopistan. Sorry, Canada, New Zealand, you can’t come. Maybe you’re so boring, no one listens to you. (Though there’s plenty of fiery Islamic rhetoric and violent scheming north of the border, surely deserving of an eavesdrop or two, no?)

No comment.

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Paper Airplanes of Mass Destruction

Remember the Stonehenge scene from Spinal Tap, when at the climactic point of the song an 18-inch model of a rock plinth, instead of a life-sized recreation, is lowered from the rafters?

Stonehenge, ’tis a magic place
Where the moon doth rise with a dragon’s face
Stonehenge where the virgins lie
And the prayer of devils fill the midnight sky

Something like that happened here:

German authorities staged raids on Tuesday after uncovering an alleged Islamist plot to carry out bomb attacks using model airplanes, federal prosecutors said, according to the AFP news agency.

Elite police units stormed nine sites in southern and eastern Germany, as well as in Belgium, based on suspicion of “preparation of grievous acts of anti-state violence” as well as money-laundering, the federal prosecutor’s office in the southwestern city of Karlsruhe said in a statement.

The searches targeted two men of Tunisian origin “suspected of acquiring information and objects with the aim of carrying out radical Islamist explosives attacks using remote-controlled model airplanes,” according to AFP.

Beyond the two men of Tunisian extraction, the searches also targeted four of their alleged contacts “on suspicion of financing militant jihad” as well as a fifth person accused of money-laundering, the report said.

Public broadcaster SWR reported that several of the suspects studied in Stuttgart, some of them specializing in aeronautics and doing internships in which they flew model airplanes using GPS navigation.

The German raids came one day after six people were arrested in the Paris region in coordinated raids on members of a suspected radical Islamist cell allegedly planning terrorist acts on French soil.

The suspects, aged between 22 and 38, were “all known to police for serious delinquency” and are being detained by the police anti-terrorist unit in the Paris suburb of Levallois.

The members of the suspected Islamist cell include one man from Benin, another from the Comoros and four French nationals, a source close to the case said.

I’m sure model airplanes can do plenty of damage if handled right (or wrong)—look what a couple of pressure cookers did in Boston—but still.

Osama bin Laden is shaking his bullet-ridden, barnacle-encrusted head.

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Arms merchant of death.

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