Archive for United Nations

Other UN Initiatives You May Have Missed

While those who haven’t fallen asleep are hailing the UN’s climate deal (show of hands…anyone…?), here’s one that slipped through the cracks:

The president of Sudan has claimed victory over the International Criminal Court after it ended its probe into allegations of war crimes in Darfur.

The ICC charged Omar al-Bashir in 2009 for crimes in the region dating back to 2003, but he refused to recognise the authority of the court in The Hague.

He said the court had failed in its attempts to “humiliate” Sudan.

Announcing the suspension on Friday, ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda blamed it on lack of action by the UN.

She called for a “dramatic shift” in the UN Security Council’s approach, saying inaction was emboldening the perpetrators of war crimes in Darfur to continue their brutality, particularly against women and girls.

Turn that frown upside-down, Fatou. The woman and girls may still be “brutalized”, but “this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow”.

What’s that? Darfur is landlocked? They couldn’t care less about the oceans? Awfully selfish of them. No wonder the UN turned its back.

Human Rights Watch said that Mr Bashir had got the wrong message from the decision to suspend the case.

“Rather than the prosecutor (Fatou Bensouda) holding up her hands in defeat, I think she threw the challenge down to the Security Council itself, that they, the Council, need to step up to the plate and assist her in the arrest and surrender of Omar al-Bashir and other accused, for fair trial at the ICC,” Human Rights Watch spokesman Richard Dicker told the BBC.

Sudan says it has carried out its own investigation and has found no proof that anyone was raped.

Given our own news on the subject lately, we Americans can relate.

A little about the climate deal (very little):

United Nations members have reached an agreement on how countries should tackle climate change.

Environmental groups have criticised the deal as a weak and ineffectual compromise, saying it weakens international climate rules.

It ended in a compromise that some participants believe keeps the world on track to reach a new global treaty by the end of next year.

Good. Everyone flew airplanes into Lima, Peru, spent lots of money and wasted lots of time, agreed to do not much of anything, and then flew home. All to be repeated next year. Most international confabs are wastes of time, money, and energy—few so ironically.

As for the “brutalization” of the women and girls of Darfur, see above comment.

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The End is Nigher

I don’t know about the temperature, but the hypocrisy is sure rising!

Hundreds of United Nations-backed projects to help the world’s poorest countries cope with the most urgent impacts of climate change have not been acted upon, the BBC has learnt.

Many of these were proposed years ago and may have to be abandoned.

Experts and officials from the world’s 48 least developed countries say lack of funding is the main reason.

They warn that a new long-term global climate defence plan may kick these projects further into the long grass.

“Long grass”. That would be from all the rainfall. And we can’t have that.

But help is on the way, paupers, and has been for more than 18 years!

Since October 1996 there has been no global warming at all (Fig. 1). This month’s RSS temperature plot pushes up the period without any global warming from 18 years 1 month to 18 years 2 months (indeed, very nearly 18 years 3 months).

The hiatus period of 18 years 2 months, or 218 months, is the farthest back one can go in the RSS satellite temperature record and still show a sub-zero trend.

No heat? Where’d it go?

New research shows that ocean heat uptake across three oceans is the likely cause of the ‘warming hiatus’ – the current decade-long slowdown in global surface warming.

Using data from a range of state-of-the-art ocean and atmosphere models, the research shows that the increased oceanic heat drawdown in the equatorial Pacific, North Atlantic and Southern Ocean basins has played a significant role in the hiatus.

This is important as current climate models have been unable to simulate the hiatus.

And some of you folks ask us to accept this so-called “settled science”.

There have been droughts and floods (and many other natural disasters) as long as there has been an earth. If you want to pay for flood prevention or water reservoirs, you have my blessing; you don’t need an unproved theory to do so. But if you stopped holding conferences and commissioning reports, you might have enough money to actually accomplish something.

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And the Difference Is…?

Journalist…terrorist… [shrug]:

Abdullah Murtaja, a Palestinian killed in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge on August 25, has been described by the United Nations for the past several months as a civilian “journalist.”

According to reports, Murtaja worked for the Hamas-affiliated Al Aqsa TV satellite channel, and was killed during shelling of the al-Shujaiyya neighborhood of Gaza City.

The Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Irina Bokova, said in a statement from August:

“I condemn the killing of Abdullah Murtaja. Journalists must be able to carry out their work in safe conditions and their civilian status needs to be respected at all times. Society needs to be kept informed of events, never more so than when living in the shadow of conflict.”

But a video portraying Murtaja “reporting” from Gaza in full jihadist uniform with rifle in hand, had disproved their civilian journalist theory.

“On 14 November, the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, issued an update about the statement she issued on 29 August, 2014, regarding Abdullah Murtaja, in the context of UNESCO’s mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom.”

“The original statement issued on 29 August was in line with UNESCO’s policy of condemning all killings of journalists. During this week, information has been brought to the attention of UNESCO that Mr Murtaja was a member of an organized armed group — an active combatant, and, therefore, not a civilian journalist. This has come to light in a video was posted recently on the Internet with Abdullah Murtaja speaking as a member of an organized armed group.”

“UNESCO therefore withdraws the statement of 29 August.”

Whoop-di-frickin’-do. At least the guy admitted his bias. I wish reporters for the New York Times and NPR cut like videos. Same goes for every United Nations agency.

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This is Quick

This is why the UN, the EU, and the Arabs who call themselves Palestinians are…temper, BTL, temper…irksome:

Four days after Palestinian terrorist Ibrahim Al-Akari killed two and injured more than 13 Israelis in Jerusalem, the UN- and EU-funded Al-Quds University honored him by naming a tournament after him.

That’s almost haiku-like in its clarity and brevity. Let me respond in kind.

Go eat [bleep] and die,
Al-Quds University,
And E-U, U-N.

I have the soul of a poet.

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Hey, Bankie Moon!

You got some splainin’ to do.

Still:

Nearly five months after a United Nations agency pledged to investigate rockets found on its premises during this summer’s Gaza war, no such inquiry has taken place.

While other UN institutions have rolled out commissions of inquiry into Operation Protective Edge, the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, known as UNRWA, has yet to launch the promised probe to examine the circumstances of three separate instances in which rockets having been placed in schools it operates.

How these weapons got into the schools and what happened to them afterwards remains somewhat unclear. UNRWA says it returned the rockets to “the local authorities,” which Israeli officials charge means they found their way back to Hamas and might have been fired at Israeli civilians.

On Monday, UN Secretary Ban Ki-moon launched an “internal and independent” inquiry into incidents that involved UN premises during Operation Protective Edge, including the shelling by Israeli forces of UNRWA schools and the rockets found there.

Can’t ask for more than that. Though…how an investigation can be both “internal and independent” is a little unclear to me.

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Today’s lesson, boys and girls…

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This Intifada Sponsored by…the UN!

And Jimmy Dean’s Pure Pork Sausage!

In a new documentary video entitled UNRWA Goes to War, journalist David Bedein builds a seemingly incontestable case against UNRWA, showing the close symbiotic relations between it and the terror group Hamas.

The video shows that not only did UNRWA schools serve as repositories for rockets in the last Gaza war, and not only were rockets launched from places adjacent to UNRWA institutions – the students at the schools are themselves educated to hate Israel and aspire to destroy it.

Bedein launched a scathing attack on UNRWA in a video he produced and published three years ago, earning a furious rebuttal from the UN group.

“While the UNRWA slogan is ‘Peace Starts Here,’ a more appropriate slogan would be ‘War Starts with UNRWA,’” the film charges. It shows footage of what it says are UNRWA elementary school students participating in military-style displays in plain sight of their teachers, in afterschool activities organized by Hamas.

A world where Israel is the villain and Arab terrorists and Islamofascists are appeased is a very dangerous world. I can’t tell you what will happen next, but I can’t say I’m optimistic. Historians can look back and see where the humanitarian catastrophes of WWs I & II passed from potential to inevitable. Don’t you get the feeling we’re living in those days right now?

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Dry Town

How ironic that Detroit (“straits” in French), located between Lake St, Clair and Lake Erie, is a desert:

Detroit officials are fuming after two visiting United Nations lawyers scolded the city for cutting off water to delinquent customers and described the shut-offs as a “human rights” violation.

The response follows a three-day visit to Detroit — which desperately is trying to bail itself out of bankruptcy — from two representatives with the U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

“It is contrary to human rights to disconnect water from people who simply do not have the means to pay their bills,” Catarina de Albuquerque, one of the two representatives, said Monday at the conclusion of their visit.

Is that her real name or her porn name?

Anyhow, “Catarina”, we have a quaint custom here in America with which you may not be familiar in whatever third-world sphincter from which you hail. No, not paying our bills—whatever lingering responsibility we felt we had toward national fiscal sanity was declared uncool in the Year Zero of our lord and savior, Barack Obama (mm-mm-mm), 2009.

It’s called clean water. Clean. C-l-e-a-n. As in no bugs, bodies, silt, dirt, e coli, Ebola, etc. I know, wacky, right? So, any resident of Detroit (of those few who are left) is welcome to carry two buckets and a pole down to the Detroit River, fill ‘em up, and haul the riches back to their hovel, free of charge. But if they don’t want to come down with cholera, they pay the price required by the water bureau to guarantee clean water. Unlike the federal government, Detroit can’t just print money.

The policy change shuts off water to businesses and residents who either are 60 days past due or owe more than $150.

Detroit — the country’s largest municipality to file for bankruptcy — reports making 27,000 shut-offs from Jan. 1 to Sept. 30.

Most shut-offs were halted for several weeks this summer to give residents an opportunity to enter a payment plan, but they have resumed with 5,100 shut-offs in September alone.

Detroit officials have defended the decision, arguing that customers collectively owed more than $115 million in delinquent water-and-sewer department payments before the city took action and that their efforts are improving the situation.

Some look at $115 million and see red ink; the UN sees black skin:

“I heard testimonies from poor, African American residents of Detroit who were forced to make impossible choices — to pay the water bill or to pay their rent.”

Touching, I’m sure, but their race is irrelevant. Not only because it’s just plain irrelevant, but because Detroit is over 80% African American (and probably poor in a similar percentage). The odds of a person in this predicament being black are so high as to be conceded as a certainty.

This is what Detroit is doing:

Detroit is helping residents by improving customer service, getting 33,000 people in the payment plans and cutting residential calls for water assistance by more than 50 percent.

What else does the UN suggest?

De Albuquerque and Farha, also known as U.N. special rapporteurs, cited such other problems as the city’s drastic population decline, rising unemployment and the utility passing on higher costs associated with an aging system.

De Albuquerque said she has seen shut-offs in other U.S. cities and developed nations, but nothing like Detroit. “Our conclusion is that you have here in Detroit a man-made perfect storm,” she said. “The scale of the disconnections in the city is unprecedented.”

De Albuquerque and Farha say the mayor’s plan to help delinquent customers fails to help the chronically poor and those who face shut-offs. Farha also said at least some residents said their past-due bills were the result of city billing or accounting errors.

However, they called their conversation with Detroit officials “constructive.” They also said they can’t enforce recommendations but want to help the city and residents resolve the situation.

As usual, the UN has been SO helpful.

Hey, I remember where I saw “Catarina de Albuquerque”! It was either in Star Whores or Driving Into Miss Daisy. I’ll get back to you.

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A Disturbing Feeling

We’ve long and often remarked that Israel can win the war, but always loses the peace. I’ve been getting that feeling ever more strongly over the past few days.

Leave it to John Kerry to crystalize those murky misgivings:

“There wasn’t a leader I met with in the region who didn’t raise with me spontaneously the need to try to get peace between Israel and the Palestinians, because it was a cause of recruitment and of street anger and agitation,” Kerry claimed, referring to a visit to Cairo that raised $5.4 billion for Hamas in Gaza on Sunday.

He further implied that Israel was responsible for “humiliating” the Palestinians.

“People need to understand the connection of that. And it has something to do with humiliation and denial and absence of dignity,” he said.

Ah yes, the Daily Humiliation of the Palestinian People™ canard. The only two words in that phrase that are not lies are “of” and “the”. The media account claims Kerry blamed ISIS on Israel, but that may be a bit of a stretch. But the “street anger” and “agitation”, whatever he may mean, have nothing to do with Israel. And even if they did, so what? Since when did we plot foreign policy based on the to-do lists of Islamist whack-jobs in Libya, Syria, and Iraq? In Lebanon and Gaza? In Somalia, Yemen, and Chad? In Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Chechnya?

What does any of it have to do with Israel?

But this does:

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: I think what the signals are is they are going to reach an agreement [with Iran]. It will be a terrible agreement for the west. It will allow the Iranians to enrich. It will leave them as a threshold nuclear state so that the administration will claim the fig leaf will be, it doesn’t have a bomb, the real story will be we will leave Iran within three months, four months, of going to a bomb any time it wants between here and eternity, which means it’s going to be essentially a nuclear power in the region. And as a result of that I guarantee you it will be a nuclear arms race in the most unstable area in the world with the worst people on earth. We will regret this for generations.

Contemporaneous with this, nations across Europe are officially and unofficially recognizing an entity they call the “Palestinian State”.

Lastly, Venezuela—as Jew-hating a state as exists in South America—was just voted to the UN Security Council.

Maybe this doesn’t matter. Israel is strong and relatively well off. It is used to being a pariah among unrighteous nations. I just wonder if Benjamin Netanyahu, no fool he, thinks about Obama like he’s some kind of crazy homeless man on the subway. Maybe if I don’t make eye contact, he’ll leave me alone, and this will all be over. That’s the way it feels to me. If we can just get to January 2017, we may be all right.

Lately, though, I’d bet on armageddon if I thought I could collect.

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Ebola Failures

I said I would lay off Ebola for a while, and I will. Soon. Promise.

Until then:

Recent pledges of help and deployments to Africa’s Ebola-hit regions have had no impact on the epidemic, a senior Medecins Sans Frontieres official says.

Christopher Stokes, who heads the charity’s Ebola operation, said it was “ridiculous” his volunteers still bore the brunt of care for sufferers.

The remarks came as UN chief Ban Ki-moon pleaded for funds, as a drive for donations fell short of its target.

UN Secretary-General Ban said a $1bn trust fund he launched in September has received just $100,000 (£62,000) so far.

Donors have given almost $400m (£250m) to other UN agencies and aid organisations directly but the UN trust fund, intended to act as a flexible spending reserve, has itself only received pledges of just $20m (£12m).

The ultimate Jack Benny dilemma: Obama or the UN? I’m thinking, I’m thinking!

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I’m not sure whether the chart counts only pledges or aid delivered—indeed, whether it counts the troops we have over there now—but it would appear to me that America has provided (or will provide) more aid than the World Bank, the African Development Bank, the EC, the UK, Germany, and China combined.

But if the world looks at the UN as the savior of humanity from contagion, it’s no surprise it looks away in disgust.

PS: The fun is beginning to wear off:

The current Ebola outbreak is “running much faster” than the international response to it, the co-discoverer of the virus said Thursday.

“This is the first Ebola epidemic where entire nations are involved, where big cities are affected,” Peter Piot, a microbiologist and a former undersecretary general of the United Nations, told Global Public Square host Fareed Zakaria. “And I continue to be worried that the response to the epidemic is really running behind the virus.”

According to the World Health Organization’s latest update, there have been almost 9,000 confirmed and suspected cases, with almost 4,500 deaths. However, the WHO warned there could be as many as 10,000 new cases per week in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone by the end of this year.

Piot, a member of the team that discovered the virus in 1976 in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo, made headlines earlier this month when he told The Guardian newspaper he feared an “unimaginable catastrophe” if the virus became lodged in a mega-city such as Lagos.

“The three countries that are affected are being totally destabilized, not only in terms of people who are killed by Ebola — their families, the orphans that now are coming up because the parents died — but the economy has come to a standstill,” Piot said Thursday, speaking from Oxford.

“People are massively dying from other diseases that are normally treatable, like malaria, or women die while giving birth because hospitals are abandoned or are full with Ebola patients. So that’s a very, very destabilizing factor,” he said, adding that the impact of its spread is “beyond Ebola.”

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The Louse That Roared

Shell Jewish kindergartens, win valuable prizes!

A donor conference in Cairo to raise money to rebuild the Gaza Strip after this year’s war between Hamas and Israel ended with pledges of $5.4 billion for reconstruction there, Norway’s foreign minister said Sunday.

Norwegian Foreign Minister Borge Brende offered the figure at the end of Sunday’s one-day conference, far beyond the $4 billion initially sought by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

In the Peter Sellers movie, The Mouse That Roared, the Grand Duchy of Fenwick declares war on the United States because they know they will lose without a shot being fired, and profit immeasurably from America’s generosity to its vanquished opponents (such as through the Marshall Plan).

As ever, farce plays out as tragedy in Arab-occupied Israel.

Qatar pledged $1 billion toward the reconstruction, once again using its vast wealth to reinforce its role as a regional player as Gulf Arab rival the United Arab Emirates promised $200 million.

The pledges followed US Secretary of State John Kerry earlier announcing immediate American assistance of $212 million. The European Union pledged 450 million euros ($568 million), while Turkey, which has been playing a growing role in the Middle East in recent years, said it was donating $200 million.

Let me see what I have in my pocket: a green Life Saver, a gas station receipt, some lint. They can have the lint.

The Kurds, true heroes in the fight against the Islamofascists of ISIS, can’t get a pea-shooter from Turkey. Heck, Turkey won’t even let its own Kurds go fight with Syria’s Kurds. Yet they give the Islamofascists of Hamass $200 million. We’re even worse—thank you, John Kerry—at $212 million.

Who’s up for insult to injury?

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon blamed last summer’s Gaza war on Israel’s “occupation” of Palestinian territories, as he called on both parties to finalized an agreement for a two-state solution.

“We must not lose sight of the root causes of the recent hostilities: a restrictive occupation that has lasted almost half a century, the continued denial of Palestinian rights and the lack of tangible progress in peace negotiations,” Ban said.

I really owe Kofi Annan an apology. I used to shred him for statements like these. But it’s not him, it’s not even Banki. It’s the UN. Hamass planned the kidnapping and murder of three Jewish Israeli teens, then let fly with thousands of missiles, mortars, and rockets across Israel. They violated every “rule” of war, deliberately targeting civilians and even more deliberately putting their own civilians at risk of death. And they still came in at 35% over their fundraising budget. What lesson would you take away from this except that war pays—handsomely?

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When All Else Fails

Blame the Jews:

The leader of Argentina’s Jewish community lamented on Monday the speech President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner gave Friday at the UN General Assembly which was, he alleged, unfairly critical of the community.

The speech also appears to hint at a Jewish conspiracy behind the economic crisis experienced by Argentina in recent decades – though Fernandez never said so outright.

Fernandez blasted Jewish community leaders for their unwillingness to let Iran participate in the probe into the 1994 Argentine Jewish Charities Federation (AMIA) bombing attack in Buenos Aires, which left 85 people dead and 300 others injured.

A year ago Iran confirmed that it would cooperate with Argentina in probing the attack after charges that Tehran was behind it.

That’s like Dr. Mengele assisting the allied powers in investigating Nazi atrocities. It’s exactly like it.

But it gets worse:

Kirchner appeared to draw a link between Jewish opposition to Argentina’s cooperation with Iran on the AMIA bombing, the “vulture funds” – commonly known as hold-out funds – that her country owes money to, and Israel’s Gaza war, in her speech at the General Assembly. She devoted a large portion of her speech to the need to confront “economic terrorists” like the hold-out funds.

The hold-out funds, having bought heavily discounted defaulted Argentina 2033 bonds remaining on the market after its 2001 default, then refused to join the the debt restructuring in 2005 and 2010, when about 90% of bondholders agreed to accept conversion of the defaulted bonds into new ones with longer maturity and lower interest rates.

According to Global-Investment.com, the leading hold-out funds that refuse to accept the restucturing are NMB Capital’s Elliott Fund, run by Paul Elliott Singer, and Aurelius Capital, run by Mark Brodsky – and both Singer and Brodsky are Jewish.

Aha! Caught ya, Jews!! “Vulture funds”, though. Wonder where she got that?

Just a coincidence?

A 2011 poll conducted by the Gino Germani Research Institute of the University of Buenos Aires on behalf of the Anti-Defamation League and Delegación de Asociaciones Israelitas Argentinas showed that a majority of Argentines held anti-Semitic sentiments or prejudices. Of the 1,510 Argentines surveyed, 82% agreed with statements “that Jews are preoccupied with making money,” 49% said that they “talk too much about what happened to them in the Holocaust”, 68% said that they have “too much power in the business world”, and 22% said that the Jews killed Jesus. The majority of people interviewed also expressed belief that Jews are more loyal to Israel than their country of birth.

Kirchner spewed her vile garbage not in private, not at a neo-Nazi rally—but at the UN General Assembly. (No wonder nobody noticed.) There wasn’t an armed drone anywhere in the vicinity?

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Meanwhile…

You know who loves ISIS? You know who sends amorous epistles to Putin? You know who thinks Hamass is just the dreamiest? You know who I bet is behind all the chaos, conflict, and cacophony in the world today, including ebola?

Iran:

Iran has failed to address concerns about suspected atomic bomb research by an agreed deadline, the U.N. nuclear watchdog said on Friday, a setback to hopes for an end to an international stand-off over Tehran’s atomic activity.

The Islamic Republic has implemented just three of five nuclear transparency steps that it was supposed to by Aug. 25 under a confidence-building deal it reached with the IAEA in November, according to the quarterly report.

Crucially, it has not provided information on the two issues that are part of the IAEA’s investigation: alleged experiments on explosives that could be used for an atomic device, and studies related to calculating nuclear explosive yields.

And Iran wonders why nobody believes them. But as a rational actor, Iran is John Gielgud. Who or what is going to stop them? The UN? Not worth discussing. NATO? What NATO country is threatened? Obama? Any worries Iran might have harbored about Obama have been swept away like a morning fog. In the clear light of day, they see the field is theirs. Now they’re just having fun:

The report said Iran, where a president seen as pragmatic took office in 2013 and revived diplomacy with the West, told the IAEA last week that most suspicions over its program were “mere allegations and do not merit consideration”.

A Vienna-based diplomat called that statement “worrying”.

The way a captured mouse is “worried” by the cat who has him at her mercy.

As Henry Kissinger just put it:

There has come into being a kind of a Shia belt from Tehran through Baghdad to Beirut. And this gives Iran the opportunity to reconstruct the ancient Persian Empire — this time under the Shia label.

From a geo-strategic point of view, I consider Iran a bigger problem than ISIS. ISIS is a group of adventurers with a very aggressive ideology. But they have to conquer more and more territory before they can became a geo-strategic, permanent reality. I think a conflict with ISIS — important as it is — is more manageable than a confrontation with Iran.

Not sure I’d have used that word “manageable”—didn’t do Obama any good—but of course he’s right. Iran has decades of crimes to its rap sheet. The only difference between the mad mullahs of Tehran and the criminally insane sh*ts of ISIS is that the former leave the heads on when they execute innocents. Can’t hang a person by the neck until dead if they’ve got no neck. Otherwise, Iran is ISIS with nukes, or soon will be.

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