Monday, January 20, 2020

MixedTimes - John Hayward

Iran Flip-Flops on Nuclear Deal: 'Tehran Still Remains in the Deal'

Iran Flip-Flops on Nuclear Deal: 'Tehran Still Remains in the Deal'

The Iranian Foreign Ministry said on Monday that claims of nuclear deal violations by European participants in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) are groundless and Tehran still respects the deal, despite having systematically abrogated most of its terms in an effort to squeeze more financial concessions out of the Europeans.

Iranian Celebrities Join Protesters in Challenging Regime

Iranian Celebrities Join Protesters in Challenging Regime

In addition to some Iranian journalists quitting their jobs in anger because the regime lied about shooting down Ukrainian International Airlines Flight PS752, Iranian celebrities are speaking out against their tyrannical rulers, while the common people persist in acts of defiance such as refusing to tread on American flags and holding banned funeral services for airplane victims.

China’s Birth Rate Falls to Almost 60-Year Low

China’s Birth Rate Falls to Almost 60-Year Low

According to data compiled by the Chinese government and released by its National Bureau of Statistics on Friday, the birth rate in 2019 fell to a level not seen since 1961.

Justin Trudeau Blames ‘Escalation’ for Iran Shooting Down Plane Full of Canadians

Justin Trudeau Blames ‘Escalation’ for Iran Shooting Down Plane Full of Canadians

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a television interview on Monday that the Canadian citizens aboard Ukraine International Air Flight PS752, which was shot down by Iran shortly after takeoff from Tehran last Tuesday on the same night Iran launched missiles at two bases in Iraq, would still be alive if tensions had not escalated in the region.

Lebanese Hezbollah Chief Demands Revenge for Qasem Soleimani

Lebanese Hezbollah Chief Demands Revenge for Qasem Soleimani

Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah in Lebanon, on Sunday called for attacks against American forces to avenge the death of Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani, who he described as a friend to Shiite forces in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen as well as Lebanon.

Video: Iran Protesters Refuse to Trample American and Israeli Flags

Video: Iran Protesters Refuse to Trample American and Israeli Flags

A video clip highlighted on Sunday by U.N. Watch, a non-governmental organization based in Switzerland, showed students at Iran’s Tehran University refusing to trample on American and Israeli flags as directed by agents of the Basij, a paramilitary force controlled by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

Iranian Regime Blocks Internet Access as Protests Continue

Iranian Regime Blocks Internet Access as Protests Continue

The Iranian regime is once again blocking Internet access in an effort to control mass protests erupting across the country after the ayatollah’s troops shot down a civilian airliner and attempted to cover up the crime.

American U.N. Envoy: U.S. Ready for Talks with Iran ‘Without Preconditions’

American U.N. Envoy: U.S. Ready for Talks with Iran ‘Without Preconditions’

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft wrote a letter to the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday stating the U.S. is “ready to engage without preconditions in serious negotiations with Iran, with the goal of preventing further endangerment of international peace and security or escalation by the Iranian regime.

China Attacks Ricky Gervais for ‘Sweatshop’ Accusations

China Attacks Ricky Gervais for ‘Sweatshop’ Accusations

China’s state-run Global Times took great exception to Golden Globe Awards host Ricky Gervais’ slam at the Apple corporation for using “sweatshops in China,” publishing an editorial response on Monday that criticized Westerners for “refusing to work hard and pinning their hopes on public welfare.

Iraq Backs Away from Threats to Expel U.S. Troops

Iraq Backs Away from Threats to Expel U.S. Troops

Iraqi officials on Monday backed away from their threat to expel U.S. troops following the killing of Iranian terrorist mastermind Gen. Qasem Soleimani and some important Iraqi Shiite militia leaders.

Iran Mulls 13 ‘Revenge Scenarios’ for Soleimani

Iran Mulls 13 ‘Revenge Scenarios’ for Soleimani

Iran’s state-run Fars News Agency (FNA) on Tuesday claimed the theocracy is contemplating 13 “revenge scenarios” to retaliate for the U.S. elimination of terrorist mastermind Qasem Soleimani in Iraq last week.

Turkey Begins Invasion of Libya

Turkey Begins Invasion of Libya

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan wasted little time sending troops to Libya after his parliament approved military intervention on January 2.

Iran Formally Announces It Will Continue Violating the Nuclear Deal

Iran Formally Announces It Will Continue Violating the Nuclear Deal

The Iranian government announced on Sunday that its systematic violations of former President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), will escalate to their logical conclusion with the removal of all limits on uranium enrichment.

U.N.: U.S. Broke International Law by Eliminating Soleimani

U.N.: U.S. Broke International Law by Eliminating Soleimani

Agnes Callamard, the U.N. special rapporteur on extrajudicial killing, said on Thursday night that the U.S. drone strike that killed Iranian terrorist mastermind Gen. Qasem Soleimani was a violation of international law.

U.S. Drone Strike Killed Hezbollah Brigades Founder Alongside Soleimani

U.S. Drone Strike Killed Hezbollah Brigades Founder Alongside Soleimani

The U.S. drone strike that killed the world’s most dangerous terrorist mastermind, Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Quds Force commander Gen. Qasem Soleimani, also killed Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, a prominent Iraqi militant aligned with Iran.

Hayward: The Hong Kong Protesters Won 2019

Hayward: The Hong Kong Protesters Won 2019

A true Person of the Year award, not one dished out for political propaganda purposes, should acknowledge the tremendous influence of the Hong Kong protesters.

'Death to America': Pro-Iran Mob Attacks U.S. Embassy in Iraq

'Death to America': Pro-Iran Mob Attacks U.S. Embassy in Iraq

A mob attacked the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on Tuesday, prompting some embassy staff to evacuate. The mob was angered by last weekend’s U.S. airstrikes against the Iran-backed Shiite militia Kataib Hezbollah (KH), which killed an American civilian contractor in a rocket attack last week.

U.S. Strikes Iran Proxies in Iraq and Syria

U.S. Strikes Iran Proxies in Iraq and Syria

U.S. warplanes struck targets in Iraq and Syria over the weekend, killing at least 25 members of an Iran-backed Shiite militia group called Kataib Hezbollah that was held responsible for a rocket attack on Friday that killed an American civilian contractor.

Philippines Bans Two U.S. Senators in Dispute Over Sanctions

Philippines Bans Two U.S. Senators in Dispute Over Sanctions

The Philippine government on Friday announced that U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) have been banned from visiting the country due to “interfering with our processes as a sovereign state,” as Philippine presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo put it.

Iranian Security Troops Break Up Funeral for Slain Protester

Iranian Security Troops Break Up Funeral for Slain Protester

A memorial service was held on Thursday in the northern Iranian town of Karaj for Pouya Bakhtiari, a young demonstrator slain during November’s anti-government protests. Iranian security forces broke up the celebration and arrested some of the participants, including Bakhtiari's family members, fearful that popular unrest might boil over into more mass demonstrations.

Iraqi President Threatens to Quit Instead of Naming Iran’s Choice for Prime Minister

Iraqi President Threatens to Quit Instead of Naming Iran’s Choice for Prime Minister

Iraqi President Barham Salih on Thursday threatened to resign rather than appoint Asaad al-Edani, currently the governor of Basra, as prime minister. Salih said Edani, who is supported by Iran’s allies in the Iraqi parliament, would be unacceptable to the huge numbers of Iraqis protesting Tehran’s influence in Baghdad.

Russian-Made Fighter Jets Crash in Russia and Iran

Russian-Made Fighter Jets Crash in Russia and Iran

A Russian-built MiG-29 bought and refurbished by Iran crashed during a test flight on Wednesday, two days after an advanced Sukhoi Su-57 stealth fighter crashed during a test flight in eastern Russia.

Islamic State Murders 10 Christian Hostages in Africa to ‘Avenge’ Baghdadi

Islamic State Murders 10 Christian Hostages in Africa to ‘Avenge’ Baghdadi

The Islamic State West African Province (ISWAP) released a video on Tuesday purportedly showing the execution of eleven hostages, ten Christians plus one Muslim. The group said the murders were in retaliation for the deaths of ISIS leaders Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and Abu al-Hassan al-Muhajir.

Hong Kong Protests Continue on Christmas

Hong Kong Protests Continue on Christmas

Hong Kong’s anti-government protests continued on Christmas, with some reports of confrontations between police and demonstrators but not the general chaos government officials seemed to be expecting.

Catholic Immigrants Celebrate Christmas in Taiwan

Catholic Immigrants Celebrate Christmas in Taiwan

The Catholic News Agency (CNA) on Sunday spotlighted hundreds of Catholic migrants celebrating Christmas at St. Christopher’s Church in Taipei, Taiwan, continuing a tradition that began in 1958.

Chinese Media Claims Missing Uyghurs Are ‘Living Normal Lives’

Chinese Media Claims Missing Uyghurs Are ‘Living Normal Lives’

China’s state-run Global Times on Monday pushed back against an international campaign to find Uyghur Muslims who went missing after China began herding them into re-education camps, claiming that the missing Uyghurs are actually “living normally” after “graduating” from the camps Beijing likes to describe as “vocational education and training centers.

Xi Jinping: China Will Not Tolerate ‘External Forces’ Interfering in Hong Kong

Xi Jinping: China Will Not Tolerate ‘External Forces’ Interfering in Hong Kong

Chinese Communist Party leader Xi Jinping, who spent the week lavishing praise and attention on Macau to send a message to a certain other island that used to be a foreign colonial possession, used a speech commemorating 20 years of Chinese control over Macau to warn that Beijing will not accept interference by “external forces” in the Hong Kong crisis.

Radical Islamists Demand Ban on Famed Indonesian Dance Music Festival

Radical Islamists Demand Ban on Famed Indonesian Dance Music Festival

Hardline Islamists in Indonesia signaled they will keep trying to ban one of Asia’s biggest annual dance music festivals, the Djakarta Warehouse Project (DWP), because it brings “immorality” into the capital city (whose name is more commonly spelled “Jakarta” outside of Indonesia) and violates Islamic law.

Indian Police Ban Protests Against Religious Persecution Law

Indian Police Ban Protests Against Religious Persecution Law

Indian police made hundreds of arrests on Thursday to enforce a ban on protests imposed after the passage of a controversial law that makes it easier for refugees from neighboring Muslim-majority countries to become citizens if they faced religious persecution at home.

Pakistani Court Orders Ex-President's Corpse Hung Outside Parliament for Three Days

Pakistani Court Orders Ex-President's Corpse Hung Outside Parliament for Three Days

Not only was former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf sentenced to death for treason on Tuesday, but on Thursday a special rider was attached to his death sentence stipulating that if he dies before he can be executed, his corpse must be “dragged” to the street outside parliament and “hanged for three days.

Hong Kong Limits New Year’s Eve Fireworks over Protests

Hong Kong Limits New Year’s Eve Fireworks over Protests

Hong Kong’s Tourism Board announced on Wednesday that the city’s fireworks display on New Year’s Eve, traditionally one of the more eye-popping displays around the globe, will be severely curtailed due to security concerns around ongoing protests.

Hayward: Pro-Lifers and the Triumph of Reason

Hayward: Pro-Lifers and the Triumph of Reason

Monday’s Supreme Court decision in favor of Kentucky’s ultrasound law was correctly seen by pro-lifers as a huge victory, and by the abortion industry as a major defeat.

China Denies Aid to ‘Ice Boy’ After Most Public Donations to Him Confiscated

China Denies Aid to ‘Ice Boy’ After Most Public Donations to Him Confiscated

The father of China’s “Ice Boy” Wang Fuman, a then-eight year old photographed with a head covered by icicles after an hour-long walk along a frigid mountain path to get to school, said on Thursday his family has been denied public assistance despite the viral sensation caused by the photo, while most of the donations sent by concerned Chinese citizens were confiscated and given to other children.

Pakistani Lawyers Riot Attacks Hospital, Multiple Patients Killed

Pakistani Lawyers Riot Attacks Hospital, Multiple Patients Killed

A mob of two hundred lawyers attacked the Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC) in Lahore, Pakistan on Wednesday, causing at least 12 deaths, several of them critical care patients whose treatments were interrupted by the riot.

Hayward: Terror Ties May Allow Pensacola Victims to Sue Saudi Arabia Under 9/11 Law

Hayward: Terror Ties May Allow Pensacola Victims to Sue Saudi Arabia Under 9/11 Law

Several U.S. officials, including President Donald Trump, have strongly hinted the government of Saudi Arabia should provide financial assistance to the victims of the Pensacola terrorist attack and their families, given that the terrorist was a Saudi military pilot undergoing training at the Naval Air Station.

Xi Jinping: 2019 Was a ‘Challenging’ Year for Communism

Xi Jinping: 2019 Was a ‘Challenging’ Year for Communism

Chinese dictator Xi Jinping held a meeting of the Communist Party’s political bureau in which 2019 was discussed as an especially “challenging” or “testing” year for communism, particularly due to China’s sputtering economy.

Over 6,000 Arrested Since Hong Kong Protests Began

Over 6,000 Arrested Since Hong Kong Protests Began

A Hong Kong police official announced on Monday that 6,022 people have been arrested since protests began six months ago – 2,393 of them students and 340 under the age of 16, the youngest just 11 years old.

Putin, Zelensky Meet in Paris to Restart Ukraine Peace Talks

Putin, Zelensky Meet in Paris to Restart Ukraine Peace Talks

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy met in Paris on Monday in an attempt to restart stalled peace talks on the conflict in eastern Ukraine, where Russian-backed separatist forces have been waging a deadly insurgency for the past five years.

Dozens of Islamic State Terrorists Surrender in Afghanistan

Dozens of Islamic State Terrorists Surrender in Afghanistan

A group of 62 Islamic State fighters, including 30 Pakistanis and two Turkish nationals, surrendered to Afghan military forces in the Nangarhar area on Tuesday. The Afghan government, which is busy arranging extradition for captured foreign nationals, said the latest in a series of surrenders indicated ISIS is losing its ability to effectively resist the national military.

Iraq: Prime Minister Resigns After Two Months of Protests

Iraq: Prime Minister Resigns After Two Months of Protests

Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Madhi announced his resignation on Friday in an address broadcast on state television. He did not specify exactly when his resignation would take effect, but the Iraqi parliament will meet on Sunday to begin the process of choosing a successor.

China Passes U.S. in Number of Diplomatic Missions Worldwide

China Passes U.S. in Number of Diplomatic Missions Worldwide

A study published by the Lowy Institute of Australia on Wednesday found that China now has more diplomatic missions around the world than the United States, with a total of 276 posts to America’s 273.

Turkey to Resume ‘Operation Peace Spring’ in Northern Syria

Turkey to Resume ‘Operation Peace Spring’ in Northern Syria

The Turkish National Security Council issued a statement on Tuesday that “Operation Peace Spring,” the Turkish invasion of northeastern Syria, will continue despite cease-fire agreements brokered with the United States and Russia.

Iranian Internet Restored; Protest Videos Reveal Chaos

Iranian Internet Restored; Protest Videos Reveal Chaos

Iran’s week-long blackout of the Internet ended on Sunday, unleashing a flood of online videos that revealed chaos and repressive violence during nationwide protests over rising gas prices.

Iran Mobilizes Half a Million Paramilitary Fighters to Suppress Protests

Iran Mobilizes Half a Million Paramilitary Fighters to Suppress Protests

Iran on Tuesday claimed “calm has been restored in the country” following protests triggered by a massive hike in gasoline prices, but the Internet remained down and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) announced it was mobilizing half a million members of a brutal paramilitary force known as the Basij to control the streets.

Chinese Airlines Cut Flights to Hong Kong

Chinese Airlines Cut Flights to Hong Kong

Chinese airlines are dramatically reducing, or even completely halting, flights to Hong Kong due to civil unrest on the island. Hong Kong’s airport, which has been the scene of a few demonstrations over the past five months, was once the busiest hub in Asia and one of the busiest airports in the world.

Reports: Iranian Protesters Burn Down 100 Banks, Shops in Gas Protest

Reports: Iranian Protesters Burn Down 100 Banks, Shops in Gas Protest

Protests in towns and cities across Iran continued Monday despite the use of lethal force against demonstrators by the regime plus a nationwide Internet blackout. The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), a designated terrorist organization, threatened “decisive” action if the protests do not end soon.