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Connected to the organisation’s database, the software version being made available to journalists later this year will flag instances when a claim that has already been checked is repeated, connecting to Full Fact’s most recent article.

In addition to the subtitles of live news programmes and broadcasts of Parliament, the current version of the tool also goes through the Hansard parliamentary record, and articles published by newspapers in order to find examples of politicians repeating claims Full Fact has already examined.

But researchers, who are cooperating with the Official of National Statistics, said that in future the tool will be able to automatically access official data to inform its fact-checking. Another version of the software, a demonstration of which was witnessed by The Guardian, had “fact checks” pop up on a television screen as politicians were speaking and giving instant verdicts on the veracity of their claims — a feature the newspaper pointed out could transform the experience of watching politics programmes like the BBC’s Question Time.

“Modern technology allows misleading claims to be spread at a faster rate than ever before,” said Full Fact director Will Moy, adding: “The next step is to develop a global infrastructure for automated fact-checking.”

A spokesman for Soros’s international grantmaking network, Open Society Foundations, said:

Independent, reliable journalism is the cornerstone of open societies and through these new, transformative tools Full Fact will make a vital contribution to defending and strengthening this work.

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Stephen King, a partner at the Omidyar network, said the tools — which will be available to journalists across the globe in 2018 — “will expand the reach and impact of fact-checkers around the world, ensuring citizens are properly informed and those in positions of power are held accountable”.

A non-profit investment firm established by Omidyar, the liberal, billionaire founder of eBay, the Omidyar Network has granted huge sums helping organisations to fight “hate speech” on the internet.

Open Society Foundations documents which were leaked last year revealed that Soros spent $6 million (£4,644,000) to influence the 2014 European Parliament elections, his foundation hoping to “mitigate the feared populist surge” and “limit the damage” it believed was caused by “xenophobic” and Eurosceptic campaigns. Breitbart London reported how the open borders fanatic funded numerous projects to “monitor”, “shame”, and “ridicule” what his organisation called “hate speech” across Europe.

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On August 7, the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) issued its first ever travel advisory warning American gun owners not to go to California unless they are willing to enter the state disarmed or risk going to jail.

The gun rights group is “warning law-abiding armed citizens that their civil rights could be in jeopardy due to that state’s restrictive gun control laws.”

SAF founder and executive vice president Alan Gottlieb observed:

The California Legislature has been out of control for years when it comes to placing restrictions on the Second Amendment rights of honest citizens. Right now, I wouldn’t suggest to any gun owner that they even travel through the state, much less to it as their final destination. Lawmakers in Sacramento either ignored or have forgotten that in 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court incorporated the Second Amendment to the states via the 14th Amendment in SAF’s landmark case of McDonald v. City of Chicago. The Second Amendment’s protection of the right to keep and bear arms applies to state and local governments, but they seem rather oblivious to that fact in the halls of California’s Legislature.
He added: If you are licensed to carry in your home state, that license is not recognized in California. It doesn’t matter how many background checks you’ve gone through or whether you took a gun safety course. Your license is no good in the Golden State, which suggests that your safety and the safety of your family are of no concern to state lawmakers or city administrators. You could be prosecuted for having a gun for personal protection, or you might get killed because you didn’t.

Gottlieb is spot on. California refuses to recognize any concealed carry permit other the one they issue. This is an expression of Democratic hegemony whereby they have made concealed carry licenses extremely difficult for Californians to acquire — fewer than 100,000 Californians have a license — and they do not want to provide a means for additional law-abiding citizens to be armed via reciprocity.

What does this mean?

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What made America the greatest economic and social powerhouse in the world was the ability to work for what you want and to enjoy the fruit of that labor. It is called incentive.

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Karl Marx loved to sit in coffee shops and whirl out plans for a government that he had no intention of living under. In his spare time he constructed a long, drawn out manifesto that was destined to become one of the choicest tools for a modern-day, bloodthirsty and pressed-for-time devil.

Among other things, Marx was a reporter for an American newspaper. And because he couldn’t make it in the real world of capitalism as a journalist, he dreamed of a government by which he could pull the real world down to his mediocrity.

Satan dearly loves Marx’s manifesto in that it provides false, Godless hope for the ignorant flailing masses. It envisions a world where no one has an advantage except the elite. No matter how hard “the proletariat” works, or whether it works at all, there will be one standard of living for everyone. It gives an entertaining sense of purpose and power for the hyper-caffeinated college student, upper echelon ‘community organizers’ and any other useful idiots who rally them.

The sharpest of the idiots become especially passionate ‘socialists’ when they finally open their eyes and see that there is a LOT of power and profit waiting for those at the top, who can rein all the lesser insightful in under a single banner.

Where socialism is not established, socialists of course villainize the country’s current antithetical leadership. They do that mostly because vilifying that leader is a perfect means of unifying the rabble that will help the most politically cunning ‘socialists’, to take power.

Socialism cares NOTHING about the welfare of the people, beyond providing whatever it will take to pacify them when the leadership is nested. Nevertheless, socialism’s success depends solely upon the groundlings because they are the crowbar that will get the jobs done in achieving their getting into that nest - and then staying there. 


Ask the citizens of Great Britain how they like socialized medicine. Ask the people of Venezuela how well socialism is working in their country.

Now that I am watching our 44th EX-president flying around the world, on our nickel, desperately promoting global socialism with the rest of his oligarch pals, I have to reflect upon how he got to where he is. The following narrative is at least a bit of how the trend he saddled and rode to the top got started ...

When I was in college, Richard Nixon was the perfect target in aiding 20th-century American ‘socialists’ to really get a foothold. From the standpoint of criminality, Nixon was a girl scout compared to the Clintons or Obamas. But he was not a pretty man, and as a businessman he was a genius - both of which counted as big strikes against him among socialist intelligentsia. I then, being the king of cool that I was, had to vote for George McGovern (mostly just to spite my parents).

I was one of the gullible, hyper-caffeinated college students who had been convinced we could undo the ‘harm’ our parents had done in two world wars and wasteful stuff like putting a man on the moon. I was not a socialist, per se. I was just one of the many millions of long-haired, lightheaded, well-meaning kids who believed that free love and the right combination of street pharmaceuticals could set the world aright.

Winston Churchill had it perfectly correct when he said, “If you are not a liberal at 20, you have no heart. (But) if you are not a conservative by 40, you have no brain.” Former conservative writer extraordinaire, George Will, also nailed it when he said that today’s emerging, voting generations simply don’t bother to read the minutes of what transpired before they showed up.

It was my pampered Woodstock generation that was the tipping point at which many Americans began to leave their brains at the door and be lulled to sleep by a droning tv and some really good music that put all sorts of messages into our heads. They were messages that were completely foreign to what had made our nation at least the most amazing and safest on earth.

Indeed it was the music of the 60s and 70s that was the hypnotizing lifeblood of an emerging Frankenstein - disguised as humanitarian social reform. That monster has since risen up, through us and our children, and is now tearing our nation (and world, really) to pieces.

For instance, the song, “Get Together”, written by Chet Powers, really captured my heart and the hearts of my wide-eyed, aspiring pacifist, hippie friends. I mean, I defy anyone to find anything wrong in the following words ...

Come on people now
Smile on your brother
Everybody get together
Try to love one another
RIGHT NOW… 


Right on! But among the gullible hippies were darkly genius marketers, wolves dressed as fellow longhaired sheep, who silently watched and listened to the very same music. And when they saw its mind numbing effects on the sheep who carried placards and wove flowers into their hair, they thought to themselves, “I can use all this.” 

And, RIGHT NOW, because of those silent marketers - ‘socialists’ posing as hippies - we in the new ‘peace-loving’ and politically correct America are losing our freedom of speech. We have come unbelievably close to having our firearms taken from us. We have a Middle Eastern, murderous, dictatorial political power - disguised as a religion - metastasizing from coast to coast (whose advance socialists are absolutely helping in order to tear us down). And, at this moment, authentic Christian conservatism is dangerously close to going all dark on a very young internet.

And that internet is owned and run by the wolves who can see the true genius of Marx in his designing a government that none of them have any intention of ever living under - but a government that can deliver up to them all the power and every decadent luxury they ever dreamed of.

Just a couple centuries earlier our forefathers gifted our nation with liberties and a vision of an opportunity for a quality life for anyone who wanted to work for it. The clockwork-precision mechanism of our Constitution was unprecedented in world history. And, after only 200 years of working at that slowly materializing dream, the self-satisfied generations that sprang from today’s silver ponytails have been trained to take all of our richness for granted - with a strange refinement of spiteful arrogance.

While we were ‘smiling on our brothers,’ smoking pot and stuffing flowers into the barrels of our military’s rifles, we just weren’t ‘into’ maintaining the eternal vigilance that we were warned was required in order to keep our freedoms.

Now, as a result of our lazy negligence, when a tyrant government or its leader wants to silence the voice of their opposition, all they have to do is to declare it to be “hate speech,” and the argument is ended at peril of prosecution.

Our first and worst black, ‘socialist’ president - who spent approaching 90 millions of our tax dollars on his vacations alone - cubbyholed nine billion dollars for a free cell phone scam (rife with fraud and graft) as part of his bread-and-circuses program securing his dependent constituency’s affection. He bundled up $400 million on some skids, and quietly airlift that to turbaned maniacs who have sworn to atomize us and our allies. And the men who brought that to our attention are now popularly considered enemies of the state.

But Donald Trump can spend his time keeping the America-reviving promises he made to the voters who elected him for just that. And the ‘socialists’ invent groundless lies of collusion with Russians in order to villainize him and threaten his impeachment.

And all that I am saying here now evokes automatic laughter from the people who make up a shadow government and sycophants that can’t fast enough help drag that big wooden horse of empty promises - socialism - into our limping nation.

It
is little wonder that people like the Obamas, the Clintons, Justin Trudeau, Theresa May, Angela Merkel, Emmanuel Macron and the growing, elite group of emerging, ‘socialist’ kings and queens are all real tight buddies. And they all hate everything that Donald Trump is about because they are busy riding the backs of the ignorant flailing masses, the gullible, hyper-caffeinated college students and the upper echelon ‘community organizers’ and other useful idiots into Marx’s fantasy.

Those above-mentioned, sharpest idiots became especially passionate ‘socialists’ when they finally opened their eyes and saw that there is a LOT of power and profit waiting for those who can rein all the under-socialists in beneath a single banner. And it’s real easy to see that the deal they are making for all this has NOTHING to do with the lie Karl Marx promoted about ‘helping the people’.

The dreams they are pursuing happen to perfectly coincide with the modern-day, bloodthirsty and pressed-for-time devil who is using this evil machine to take down millions of deceived souls who are expecting help from selfish men posing as ‘socialists’. So he will gladly accommodate those poseurs for their unwitting assistance.

But in exchange for the empires they are now building for themselves, there will be hell to pay.  

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China practiced taking down websites deemed harmful to the state in cohorts with internet service providers ahead of a political reshuffling of the Communist Party later this year.

Internet data centers were ordered by the Chinese government to participate in a three-hour drill Thursday to refine their “emergency response” skills, Reuters reported.

The drill was scheduled “to step up online security for the 19th Party Congress and tackle the problem of smaller websites illegally disseminating harmful information,” China’s Public Ministry said in a statement.

The drill ordered internet data centers to practice shutting down target web pages and report contact information, IP address and server information of the affected website to the police.

China has been honing in on its censorship capabilities, including cracking down on VPNs used to bypass internet censorship in a bid to upgrade their so-called Great Firewall.

Censorship and restriction of speech by the Chinese government is nothing new.

Just last month, Chinese authorities blocked all images and references to Winnie the Pooh due to Chinese bloggers mockingly comparing him to China’s President Xi Jinping.

The Chinese government wants not just total control of the internet, but also influence in the media and entertainment industries.

China has also bought a majority stake in Cinedigm Corp., a media production company that creates shows for Netflix and other outlets, to control the content of TV shows and movies in their domestic market.

And China has bought up major stakes in several Hollywood studios in a bid to influence the perception of the Communist state for American and global audiences.

Their gradual takeover of the entertainment industry is already bearing results, as Michael Bay is set to direct the film ‘Little America,’ a dystopian thriller where America is so bankrupt that China comes in to settle its debts.

These actions are hallmarks of an authoritarian government that wants nothing more than complete control of the flow of information, and the ability to wipe out any content that may disagree with their Communist ideology.

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Their number is just 17,000 in a population of 80 million (0.02%). They are full Turkish citizens. Most come from families living for centuries in what today is modern Turkey. They pay their taxes to the Turkish government. Their sons are conscripts in the Turkish army. Their mother tongue is Turkish. When someone asks them where they are from they say they are Turkish - because they are Turkish. Nevertheless, the Turks think of them as \"Israelis\" - not because they are not Turkish, but because they are Turkish Jews.

The members of Alperen Hearths - a bizarre name for a youth group - are also Turkish. They speak the same language as Turkish Jews and they carry the same passport that proudly sports the Crescent and Star. The members of this group, however, think that they are Turks but that Turkish Jews are not.

The Alperen group fuses pan-Turkic racism with Islamism, neo-Ottomanism, anti-Western and anti-Semitic ideas. It promotes an alliance spanning Central Asia to the Middle East based on \"common historic [read: Turkish] values\".

In April, the Alperen group announced that it would support highly controversial constitutional amendments granting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan new sweeping powers narrowly accepted, with 51.4% of the national vote, in a referendum. They are, in a way, Erdogan's willing army of young Ottoman soldiers.

In 2016, the Alperen threatened violence against an annual gay pride march in Istanbul. Alperen's Istanbul chief, Kursat Mican, said:

Degenerates will not be allowed to carry out their fantasies on this land...We're not responsible for what will happen after this point ... We do not want people to walk around half-naked with alcohol bottles in their hands in this sacred city watered by the blood of our ancestors.

The Istanbul governor's office later banned the march.

The Alperen can also sometimes be generously amusing. In December 2016, a group of Alperen youths celebrated Christmas and New Year's Eve in Turkey by holding a man dressed as Santa Claus at gunpoint.

Burak Yasar, a provincial head of the group, said: \"Our purpose is for people to go back to their roots. We are Muslim Turks and have been banner-bearers of Islam for a thousand years\".

The Alperen were at the heart of a new anti-Semitic Turkish show recently, apparently inspired by Erdogan. This time, Erdogan's incitement against Israel themed around the Jewish state's control of security at the entrances to the Temple Mount site in Jerusalem. The Turkish president warned that Israel could not \"expect the Islamic world to remain unresponsive after the humiliation Muslims suffered with the restrictions at the Noble Sanctuary\" - a reference to the new security measures briefly instituted by Israeli officials at the entrances to the Temple Mount, which were removed after a few days. Muslims may worship at the al-Aqsa mosque, but there should be safety precautions to protect both them and the mosque. It was the Muslims, not the Jews, who were telling Muslims not to enter the Temple Mount.

The Alperen, however, were immediately with Erdogan. They protested outside one of the most significant synagogues in Istanbul, to denounce Israel's security measures following a deadly attack at the Temple Mount that left two Israeli police officers dead. \"If you prevent our freedom of worship there [at Jerusalem's al-Aqsa Mosque] then we will prevent your freedom of worship here [at Istanbul's Neve Shalom Synagogue],\" a statement from the Alperen said. \"Our [Palestinian] brothers cannot pray there. Putting metal detectors harasses our brothers\". Some Alperen youths kicked the synagogue's doors and others threw stones at the building.

Eren Keskin, a human rights lawyer and activist, said that none of the Alperen members has been prosecuted for preventing prayers at the synagogue or for acts of violence in front of it. \"This [group] is evidently being protected by the government ... It must be viewed as a violent group... What they do is to frighten the whole Jewish community\".

It may sound absurd that a violent bunch of young Turkish men attacked a prayer house attended by other Turkish men and women in order to protest security measures announced in a foreign country. There were no protests in front of Israel's diplomatic mission buildings in Turkey. The protest was directed at full Turkish citizens just because these full Turkish citizens belong to a faith other than the majority's. To paraphrase George Orwell, \"Some Turks are more equal than others.\"

Just as with the Egypt's Copts - the indigenous descendants of the pharaohs; or the Yazidis in Iraq; or the Armenians, Greeks and Kurds in Turkey, the Jews are Turkey's \"foreign\" Turks, outcasts in the land where they and their ancestors wore born.

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Analysis UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd kicked off a firestorm in the tech community Tuesday when she argued that \"real people\" don't need or use end-to-end encryption.

In an article in the Daily Telegraph timed to coincide with Rudd's appearance at a closed event in San Francisco, Rudd argued: \"Real people often prefer ease of use and a multitude of features to perfect, unbreakable security.\"

She continued: \"Who uses WhatsApp because it is end-to-end encrypted, rather than because it is an incredibly user-friendly and cheap way of staying in touch with friends and family? Companies are constantly making trade-offs between security and 'usability,' and it is here where our experts believe opportunities may lie.\"

The reference to \"real people\" struck a nerve with a host of security experts, sysadmins, privacy advocates and tech-savvy consumers who took to Twitter to point out that they were real people, and not ISIS sympathizers – as Rudd implied in her piece. Rudd essentially declared that people who use strong encryption are not normal, not real people, which is a rather dangerous sentiment.

More broadly, her argument is an effort to square the circle on the issue of encryption: where tech companies and security experts say they cannot allow access to encrypted messages without compromising the entire system; and politicians and the security services argue that they need to be able to gain access to all communications for national security reasons.

Magic

The politicians' argument has long been disparaged as \"magical thinking\" by the tech industry (and some federal agency representatives): simply wishing something to be true does not make it possible.

\"This is not about asking the companies to break encryption or create so-called 'back doors',\" Rudd argued, while failing to recognize that any method of breaking encryption on demand is, by definition, the introduction of a backdoor. She added:

I know some will argue that it's impossible to have both – that if a system is end-to-end encrypted then it's impossible ever to access the communication. That might be true in theory. But the reality is different.

\"There are options. But they rely on mature conversations between the tech companies and government – and they must be confidential. The key point is that this is not about compromising wider security. It is about working together so we can find a way for our intelligence services, in very specific circumstances, to get more information on what serious criminals and terrorists are doing online.\"

What Rudd appears to be arguing for is encryption on people's devices, but with tech companies providing and storing the encryption keys so they can decrypt messages when ordered to do so by the authorities – or perhaps provide some sort of secret backdoor access so investigators can leaf through decrypted chatter remotely on suspects' devices. The existence of these skeleton keys, or secret back passages, would undermine security and privacy for everyone.

And the reference to conversations having to be confidential – well, that was borne out by the fact that the first meeting of the \"Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism\" was kept entirely secret – with limited details only put out the day before. Even the location of the meeting was kept secret.

We asked to attend and were told: \"The event isn't open to the press at the request of some of our participants.\" Some tweets from inside the event by the organizers provide a very limited window into discussions.

Remember Snowden?

What Rudd's argument fails to acknowledge, however, is the entire reason that the encryption debate took off in the first place: mass surveillance carried out by the National Security Agency (NSA) that was revealed in confidential documents released by Edward Snowden back in 2013.

Lest anyone forget, Snowden revealed that not only were the US authorities monitoring every phone call made in the US, but they had tapped the internet's backbone and tech giants' data centers without letting them know.

Many of those programs have since been declared illegal, but the enormous breach of trust felt by the US tech companies that had been working with the authorities to provide legal access to communications resulted in immediate efforts to encrypt all data and so cut off the NSA's data firehose.

The tech companies also responded to massive consumer demand for more secure systems when the extent of government spying became clear. The earliest and most high-profile shift was when Apple updated its mobile operating system to provide true end-to-end encryption, meaning that it was unable to read its own users' messages.

That move was swiftly followed by others, including Facebook-owned WhatsApp, after competitors like Signal suddenly appeared on the market and picked up tens of thousands of new users almost overnight.

Rudd's argument essentially boils down to asking everyone to forget about the fact that the US government illegally hoovered up and stored everyone's personal communications, and then let them do it again. Because terrorists.

A solution

Not that such an approach is impossible: companies like Facebook, Google, Apple and so on could redesign their systems to make it possible to decrypt them. They could even avoid the problem of a simple backdoor by using constantly changing encryption keys – so long as they keep a copy of those keys.

When the authorities then turn up and ask for specific messages from specific users to be decrypted, the company in question could match the messages with the encryption key used in each case. That would certainly provide additional layers of security and make it much harder for a malicious third party to gain access to messages.

But – and it is a very big \"but\" – the issue is over whether the companies, and ordinary citizens, trust the security services not to abuse the system. And there is a wealth of evidence to suggest that any such trust would be misplaced.

As we know from the Snowden documents as well as efforts from politicians such as senator Ron Wyden, the authorities have repeatedly developed secret and transparently flawed legal justifications to extend their powers far beyond what the law explicitly states.

For example, the ability to collect the details of every single phone call made over Verizon and AT&T's networks was eventually achieved through the issuance of a single piece of paper, renewed in secret every three months.

And despite Congress' best efforts, the US security services are still refusing to say how many US citizens' details are held in a vast database that was created illegally through misinterpretation of the FISA Act, a piece of legislation specifically tailored to gather information only on non-citizens. Congress started asking for the figure seven years ago.

The governments on both sides of the Atlantic do of course have good and valid reasons for wanting to be able to access encrypted communications, especially given the spate of recent terrorist attacks.

But the reality is that the security services have become addicted to the easy search capabilities that come from mass surveillance, rather than the much harder task of pinpointing and targeting individuals.

And there is no evidence that they are willing to let that position go. Especially when they can work the political systems and use the terrorism threat to push through legislation that restores their ability to spy on anyone at will. 

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WikiLeaks Editor Julian Assange is daring Emmanuel Macron to call for his arrest, after the website released thousands of hacked emails from the French president’s election campaign.

After a tranche of emails associated with the French president was published in a searchable archive by WikiLeaks on Monday, Macron’s political party released a statement saying a complaint had been filed with the authorities.

“En Marche will inform the public prosecutor of this new publication in the complaint already filed and under consideration for fraudulent access, fraudulent extraction of data, breach of correspondence and identity theft,” a party statement said.

While the party did not specifically mention Assange or an arrest, the WikiLeaks editor has taken to Twitter to seemingly goad Macron, asking: “You want my arrest?

Posting a Le Figaro article about En Marche’s statement, Assange, who has been taking refuge in London’s Ecuadorian embassy since 2012, suggested the French president should be clear about his end goal.

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In another tweet linking to the same article, Assange implied that Macron was undermining press freedom.

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On May 5, Macron’s campaign team was the target of a “massive hack” two days before the final presidential vote. An investigation into the security breach is still underway.

The timing of the hack raised suggestions that it had been coordinated to influence the outcome of the election.

In the immediate aftermath, the French electoral commission warned the nation’s media not to publish details of the hack in the run-up to the vote.

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Our \"progressive\" (not) left is becoming more and more domineering – hysterical, really – in its attempt to control what the rest of us see, hear, and read. In their quest to manipulate what we think, what we learn, leftists are resorting to tactics ridiculous, despotic, and sometimes violent. They are completely out of the closet with regard to the First Amendment; they want it expunged from the Constitution.

The latest in their bag of tricks is that speech that offends them constitutes violence! One Lisa Feldman Barrett wrote recently in the NYT that speech she opposes – that would be any speech defending conservative principles – causes stress, which causes grievous psychological harm. Her argument is a pitiful way of defending those students at Middlebury College who rioted when Charles Murray came to their campus to speak, during which time the professor who invited him was injured. She uses much bloviating academic blather to defend her untenable position and pretends to champion open debate but concludes by calling talks from a speaker like Milo Yiannopoulos a \"campaign of abuse,\" too much to bear for college snowflakes. Milo may not be to everyone's taste, but no one is likely to be brain-damaged by hearing him speak.

Barrett sees scholarship such as Murray's as \"repugnant and offensive\" but not violent. Still, it is impossible to misunderstand her view that conservative speakers who challenge liberal dogma should not be allowed to be heard.

Barrett's argument that words can be psychologically damaging would ring true if she were discussing the verbal abuse visited upon the spouses and children of personality-disordered persons or on children bullied over a long period of time at school, but her contention that the words of conservative speakers equal violence is sheer nonsense. If speech were soul-destroying violence, the Founders would never have made it to the signing of the Constitution. They would have all been killed by the words of those who had opposed them since 1776.

Even more ridiculous than Barrett's \"speech can be violent\" theory is the case of artist Dana Schutz, whose best known work is a painting, \"Open Casket,\" a portrait of the young black American Emmett Till, who was murdered in 1955. David Marcus wrote about this bit of balderdash at The Federalist. Last week, at the Institute for Contemporary Art in Boston, social justice warriors protested the exhibition of Schutz's work because she is white! It was the lie of a white woman that led to Till's death, so no white woman should be allowed to memorialize it. Schutz must be contaminated by the racism that caused the murder. Now these \"progressive\" tyrants want to dictate who can and who cannot create art. The ICA capitulated, and the painting was absent from the exhibition.

Perhaps the most bizarre protest by leftist activists is the drive to prevent Dennis Prager, longtime conservative radio host, author, founder of PragerUniversity, and music-lover, from conducting the Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra at Disney Hall in Los Angeles on August 16. Shockingly, members of that orchestra mounted a campaign to have Prager disinvited! Not shocking is the fact that they are also college professors. How utterly predictable. Who else but university professors would be so intolerant? Oh, the former mayor of Santa Monica made it clear he would not be attending a concert featuring a \"bigoted hate-monger.\"

As Prager wrote, \"this is a new low for the illiberal left: It is not enough to prevent conservatives from speaking; it is now necessary to prevent conservatives from appearing even when not speaking.\" So far, the board of directors has defied the protest.

Anyone who knows of Prager knows that the last thing he is is a bigoted hate-monger. That would be the illiberal left, who are the real bigots and hate-mongers.

From Barrett's opposition to anyone hearing Milo to those objecting to Dana Schutz's art to the idiots protesting Dennis Prager conducting part of a concert at Disney Hall, this level of intolerance is destroying American civil society. It is leftists who are the fascists, totalitarian, autocratic, and despotic.

Freedom of speech is part of the First Amendment for a good reason. The Founders knew that it was and would remain an inviolable aspect of individual liberty and human freedom. Those of the repressive left need to be ignored, if not to be mocked for their small-mindedness and for their obscene and destructive prejudice.

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A Franco-German film that no one in Europe is legally allowed to see has become the source of a major scandal, and its creators the targets of unprecedented smear and hate campaigns from Germany's public broadcasters.

At the center of the scandal is one of Europe's biggest media companies, the Westdeutsche Rundfunk (WDR) - with 4,500 employees and an annual budget of 1.4 billion euros - and the Franco-German culture channel, ARTE.

The television documentary, \"Chosen and Excluded – the Hate for Jews in Europe\", will be shown in the United States for one night only, on August 9. The Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles announced that it would screen the film after the German and French networks tried \"to bury the documentary, before it could contaminate the viewing public with the truth,\" according to the Center's Associate Dean, Rabbi Abraham Cooper, in an interview with Gatestone Institute. \"It is a film that needs to be viewed by anyone concerned about anti-Semitism and anyone concerned about the democratic future of Europe. It is a truth-telling, and 'PC'-busting documentary\", he said.

The truth is that in today's Europe, it is becoming more and more difficult to tell the truth.

ARTE had commissioned the film with the support of the WDR, but is now seeking to hide it. The film is not about anti-Semitism among neo-Nazis, but about its acceptance by the mainstream mass media, politicians, left wingers, Muslim \"Palestine\" activists, rappers and church organizations. Initially, it was said that the film was \"a provocation\", that it \"fans the flames\", and that \"because of the terror situation in France, it cannot be broadcast.\"

Later, \"technical journalistic shortcomings\" were cited as the reason why the film could not be released from the hazardous materials closet.

Murderers of Jews as Honorary Citizens

ARTE, as part of its programming, broadcasts films such as \"The Little Stone Thrower of Silwan\" - a report sympathizing with sweet Arab children in Jerusalem who just want to make their neighborhood \"Jew-free\".

Would the station ever show a serious film about anti-Semitism?, Gatestone asked the journalist Jean Patrick Grumberg, of the French-language news site Dreuz. Grumberg replied:

\"France is also a country were communist mayors celebrate Palestinian Jew-killers as honorary citizens. Arte would never denounce a communist. They would instead introduce the Terrorists as \"Freedom fighters\"... the heads of Arte France would never - ever - be hired if they are suspected of being pro-Israelis or conservatives. As a matter of fact, being a radical is welcome.\"

According to Grumberg, \"nearly 100% of the French media are anti-israel.\" Anyone who is pro-Israel must conceal it, or deal with the threat of repercussions.

\"And within this hard to believe environment, France Television and Arte are the worst among the 'islamo-lefties'.

\"To start with, France's Arte heads of program refused to produce a documentary about anti-semitism in Europe because they knew too well that it would underline the Muslim anti-semitism issue, and Muslim anti-semitism is taboo in France, most notably among the left and in the media.

\"One has to keep in mind that France is the Western country with the largest number of Jews assassinated during the 21st century (14 Jewish people killed because they were Jewish). All of them were killed by Muslims, not by the Far right. Arte would never want you to know that.\"

ARTE Germany, however, was prepared to implement the project. But, says Grumberg, ARTE then learned that the filmmakers, Joachim Schroeder and Sophie Hafner, had taken this \"further than merely denouncing Jew hatred among European Muslims.\"

\"They [the filmmakers] dug deep into the European Union funded anti-israeli NGO's incitement, and exposed the false media narrative by fact checking whether the charges against Israel had a real basis in the West bank and in Israel. And there weren't any. When they exposed the lies, they mainly exposed Arte's false narrative.\"

Censorship and Smear Campaign

As soon as the two broadcasters became aware of the film's contents, they severed all contactwith the filmmakers. Since then, they have been publicly maligning the work.

The responsible WDR editor, who had accepted the film as being in accordance with the contract, faced such an amount of hostility, harassment and mobbing by her colleagues that she chose\"early retirement\". It was only in the face of great opposition that the film was publicly screened twice - and then only after enormous pressure. Historians and journalists who saw the film published newspaper articles calling for its release. The Central Council of Jews in Germany also backed that call. The premiere of the film, however, on June 13, was actually illegal. Germany's largest and most popular tabloid, BILD, streamed the original version on its website for 24 hours, without the permission of WDR. (The film was posted by someone on YouTube, before being blocked.) Subsequently, the debate on censorship became so heated that the WDR felt it had to broadcast the film.

The way WDR broadcast it, however, was unique: at the beginning of the film and in brief intervals throughout, warning signs were inserted again and again, indirectly urging viewers not to believe what they saw in the film. They were to read the \"ostensibly necessary additions and explanations\" on the WDR website - a \"fact check\" consisting of 30 texts. In one example, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas claimed, falsely, in a speech to the European Parliament:

It was just a week ago that Israeli rabbis issued a clear statement: They demanded that their government poison the water in order to kill Palestinians.

From this, according to WDR, one should not \"deduce the assertion\" that \"Abbas's speech was part of a tradition that since the Middle Ages has alleged that Jews were poisoning the wells,\" since: \"after all, Abbas is not talking about 'wells' here.\"

\r\n \r\n \r\n
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas receives a standing ovation at the European Parliament in Brussels, after falsely claiming in his speech that Israeli rabbis were calling to poison Palestinian water. Abbas later recanted and admitted that his claim had been false

The anti-Semitic NGO Business

The film also accurately shows that several church organizations support trying to destroy Israel through economic means, by boycotting people and products. The WDR claims that this assertion is wrong, and as evidence, cites statements put out by these organizations, rejecting any association with a boycott movement. However, it is WDR's claim that is the lie. The organization NGO Monitor, which calls for transparency in the Israeli NGO sector, substantiated the lie in a comprehensive response to the \"Fact Check\":

\"The NGO farce is finally being unmasked,\" according to Olga Deutsch, director of the Europe desk at NGO Monitor in a telephone interview.

Civil society is necessary and crucial, but the NGOs are granted such huge sums of money and so much power to work in one of the most fragile and conflict-ridden regions of the world, with absolutely no requirement for transparency and accountability. Among other things, the film also demonstrates this.

There had already been a similar debate in Germany in early 2015, when Tuvia Tenenbom's book, Catch the Jew, was published in German. In this report on his trip to Israel, the author also described the anti-Semitism of many European-funded NGOs in Israel, and exposes, for instance, the chief investigator of the organization B'Tselem, which is financed by the European Union, among others, as a holocaust-denier. In an interview with Gatestone, Tenenbom said:

The European 'elites' are far more antisemitic than the average Muslim. What the Europeans are doing in Israel is nothing but the continuation of the Nazi theology of the past - using the NGOs to finish the job that their grandparents did not get to complete in World War II.

\"Parisian Intifada\"

Towards the end of the film, several Jews are interviewed in the Paris suburb of Sarcelles. A boy of about 13 years old says: \"I dream of making aliyah [moving to Israel] and fighting in the Israeli army.\" In an interview with Gatestone, one of the film's authors, Joachim Schroeder, recounts:

We asked the boy if he had any experience with the invading mob of hooligans, and how he feels in everyday life here in Sarcelles. If I had to deal with this day in and day out, I would also say: I want to get out of here.

The original soundtrack from the film documents an attack in Sarcelles, complete with images of demolished cars and store windows, by \"pro-Palestinian activists\" in July 2014:

Until the summer of 2014, Sarcelles was considered to be a model of functioning multiculturalism. Jews, Christians and Muslims living side by side and together in city districts with 60,000 inhabitants. Then came Sunday, July 20, 2014. \"Palestine: Come armed with mortars, fire extinguishers and clubs, come in large numbers, we're going to gang up on the Jewish district of Sarcelles,\" is what it says in one of many exhortations. More than 3,000 demonstrators show up. Molotov cocktails fly against the synagogue. Policemen prevent the storming of the area. The crowd screams: \"Death to the Jews\" and \"Hitler was right\". The violent mob plunders a pharmacy run by Jews and a kosher supermarket. Both are set on fire. The police talk about a \"Parisian Intifada\".

For Jewish adolescents who had experienced \"anti-Semitism from their very birth\", it was a form of \"redemption to go to Israel\", says François Pupponi, the socialist mayor of Sarcelles in an interview in the film:

French Jews feel that they have no future in France, that they have to leave their country to be able to live safely and in peace. But to tell them that they are wrong is also not the right thing to do. I tell them that they are right. But then I appeal to them to stay. Because if they leave, France is dead. Why? Because if a Jew cannot live by his faith here, then this secular republic, with our world-famous idea of religious freedom, no longer exists.

Anti-Semitism as Mainstream

The scandal surrounding the film shows how things really are in terms of the culture and freedom of expression in Europe. \"The WDR ranks among those whom we criticize in this film,\" says Schroeder. \"Up to that point, one could only speculate about this [anti-Semitism], but the way they dealt with this broadcast made it very clear.\"

Anti-Semitism in Europe does not come from fringe groups. It is primarily left-wing liberals - \"intellectuals\" - who fuel the hatred. At the end of the film, retired Parisian police commissioner Sammy Ghozlan, a Jew who fled to France from Algeria, says:

I am convinced that the Arabs in France would never have turned to violence against the Jews if they had not been convinced by others that it was their duty to demonstrate their solidarity with their coreligionists in Palestine. Otherwise, they would never have done that. They were persuaded that this was necessary. And since some of those who hold power, mayors or ministers, took the liberty of doing such a thing, for them, it justified the attacks so they supported them.

\"That is one of the key messages of our film,\" Joachim Schroeder said to Gatestone. \"Who was it that encouraged them to do this? It was not just their brothers and sisters; it was the French and German mainstream.\"

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Google’s first page results for searches of terms such as ‘jihad’, ‘shariah’ and ‘taqiyya’ now return mostly reputable explanations of the Islamic concepts. Taqiyya, which describes the circumstances under which a Muslim can conceal their belief in the face of persecution, is the sole term to feature a questionable website on the first page of results.

“Reputable” according to whom? “Questionable” according to whom? Google is bowing to pressure from Muslim such as Omar Suleiman without considering whether those who are demanding that the search results be skewed in a particular direction might have an ulterior motive. Could it be that those who are pressuring Google want to conceal certain truths about Islam that they would prefer that non-Muslims not know?

This is a real possibility, but of course Google executives would have to study Islam themselves in order to determine whether or not these Muslims who are pressuring them are misleading them, and that’s not going to happen. Still, they could have done a bit more due diligence, and made some efforts to determine whether those being tarred as “hate groups” really deserved the label, whether the Southern Poverty Law Center was really a reliable and objective arbiter of which groups were and weren’t “hate groups,” and whether the information that Google was suppressing was really inaccurate. Instead, Google seems to have swallowed uncritically everything Omar Suleiman and the others said.

Suleiman, however, still isn’t satisfied: “One leading activist in favor of Google modifying its results told Anadolu Agency he noticed the updated search results and thanked the company for its efforts but said ‘much still needs to be done.'” He claimed that Google has a responsibility to “combat ‘hate-filled Islamophobia’ similar to how they work to suppress extremist propaganda from groups like Daesh and al-Qaeda.”

This should have made Google executives stop and think. The Islamic State (Daesh) and al-Qaeda slaughter people gleefully and call openly for more mass murders. There is no firm evidence that anyone has ever been killed by a “hate-filled Islamophobe,” and the claim that Hamas-linked CAIR and the SPLC make in this article, that this supposed “Islamophobic” rhetoric has led to a rise in hate crimes against Muslims, is supported by not a scintilla of evidence. Suleiman is equating critical words with murderous deeds, and Google should have realized at that point that he had an agenda and wasn’t being honest.

Suleiman said Google should differentiate between ‘criticism of Islam and hate-filled Islamophobia’, emphasizing the religion should not be infringed upon.

That’s not clear. He apparently is saying that there is acceptable criticism of Islam that is not “hate-filled Islamophobia,” but if that is so, then the religion can be “infringed upon,” at least by this legitimate criticism, no? Or if the claim that Islam must not be “infringed upon” means that it cannot be criticized, why is that so of Islam but not any other religion?

Suleiman says: “I don’t think Google has a responsibility to portray Muslims positively. I think Google has a responsibility to weed out fear-mongering and hate groups but I don’t want Google to silence critique of Islam, or critique of Muslims.”

The problem with this is that neither Suleiman, nor Hamas-linked CAIR, nor anyone else who has ever said that there was a distinction between legitimate criticism of Islam and “hate-filled Islamophobia” has ever identified anyone he thinks is a legitimate critic of Islam who is not “Islamophobic.” Over 16 books now, as well as thousands of articles and over 45,000 blog posts, I have attempted to present a reasonable, documented, fair and accurate criticism of Islam and explanation of the jihad doctrine. Nevertheless, I’ve been tarred as a purveyor of “hate-filled Islamophobia” by groups and individuals that have never given my work a fair hearing, but have read it only to search of gotcha!-quotes they could wrench away from their obvious benign meaning in order to claim I was saying something hateful. And this isn’t just me — this happens to anyone and everyone who dares to utter a critical word about Islam or jihad, wherever they are on the political spectrum.

This experience, reinforced countless times over a decade and a half, makes me extremely skeptical when Omar Suleiman says that he doesn’t want Google to silence critique of Islam. If he could produce some critique of Islam that he approved of, my skepticism might lessen. But he won’t, and can’t. It seems much more likely that he pressured Google to skew its results so as to deep-six criticism of Islam, but knowing that he couldn’t tell them that he was trying to bring Google into line with Sharia blasphemy laws forbidding criticism of Islam, he told them instead that he wasn’t against criticism of Islam as such, but only against “hate-filled Islamophobia.”

Mr. Suleiman, if you and your colleagues hadn’t spent years tarring rational criticism of Islam that was accurate and presented in good faith as “hate-filled Islamophobia,” I might have believed you. But as one of your primary victims, I don’t.

I discuss the Islamic supremacist initiative to compel the West to accept Sharia blasphemy laws under the guise of stamping out “hate speech,” an initiative that is now galloping forward and achieving immense success, in my new book The Complete Infidel’s Guide to Free Speech (and Its Enemies).

“US Muslim groups welcome changes to Google results,” by Michael Hernandez, Anadolu Agency, July 26, 2017:

Queries about Islam and Muslims on the world’s largest search engine have been updated amid public pressure to tamp down alleged disinformation from hate groups.

However, activists who have worked to bring about the changes say more work remains.

In the past, users on Google seeking information about the religion or its adherents would be presented prominently with what many criticized as propaganda from hate groups.

That has recently changed.

Google’s first page results for searches of terms such as “jihad”, “shariah” and “taqiyya” now return mostly reputable explanations of the Islamic concepts. Taqiyya, which describes the circumstances under which a Muslim can conceal their belief in the face of persecution, is the sole term to feature a questionable website on the first page of results.

Google did not confirm to Anadolu Agency the changes but said it is constantly updating its algorithms.

The search giant referred the agency to a recent blog post in which it said it was working to push back on what it called “offensive or clearly misleading content”.

“To help prevent the spread of such content for this subset of queries, we’ve improved our evaluation methods and made algorithmic updates to surface more authoritative content,” it said.

Combatting Islamophobia

One leading activist in favor of Google modifying its results told Anadolu Agency he noticed the updated search results and thanked the company for its efforts but said “much still needs to be done”.

Imam Omar Suleiman, who has been at the forefront of efforts to combat misleading information about his faith on the web, argued that Google and companies like it have a responsibility to combat “hate-filled Islamophobia” similar to how they work to suppress extremist propaganda from groups like Daesh and al-Qaeda.

Suleiman said Google should differentiate between “criticism of Islam and hate-filled Islamophobia”, emphasizing the religion should not be infringed upon.

“Google does not need to silence criticism of Islam and honest discussions about Islam, but heavily funded hate groups that are able to work the SEOs to get their websites showing up on the first, second page – I think that’s deeply problematic,” the popular imam said, referring to search engine optimization — the way in which websites are able to improve their placement in search engine results.

The task of sorting out legitimate criticism or debate about Islam from misleading information will not be easy, particularly in societies that value freedom of speech — a fact Suleiman, who is the founder and president of the Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research, acknowledged.

Google told Anadolu Agency it does not seek to remove content from its platform simply because it is unsavory or unpopular, but does its best to prevent hate speech from appearing.

One way it is working to improve on the effort is by providing users with a mechanism in autofill suggestions that would allow users to alert the company when an offensive term appears.

Amid a nationwide increase in hate crimes targeting Muslims, the effort to combat misinformation is more imperative than ever, Muslim group said.

Hate crimes against Muslims

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the U.S.’s largest Muslim advocacy group, said it tracked a 584 percent increase in anti-Muslim hate crimes from 2014 to 2016.

The group is not the only one to find such numbers. The Southern Poverty Law Center tracks hate incidents and groups in the U.S. and said it found hate groups increasing in number for the second consecutive year in 2016, fueled largely by a near-tripling of anti-Muslim groups.

“The growth has been accompanied by a rash of crimes targeting Muslims,” the center said in its annual report.

Information people receive from a variety of sources — television, radio and the Internet — no doubt plays a role in fomenting hatred among some of those who perpetrate attacks but could also be used to stop them.

“We are seeing a rise in hate crimes towards Muslims, and there is a direct connection between this demonization of Islam and Muslims and the hate crimes that are being perpetuated against Muslims in the United States,” Suleiman said.

Still, he maintained that such voices should not be censored but “should not be featured prominently as authoritative voices.”

Suleiman added: “I don’t think Google has a responsibility to portray Muslims positively. I think Google has a responsibility to weed out fear-mongering and hate groups but I don’t want Google to silence critique of Islam, or critique of Muslims…

Yes, you do.

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By changing the constitution, the Swedish government wants to prohibit websites that reveal the ethnicity of convicted criminals, Fria Tider reports.

It
is through a change in the Freedom of the press and the freedom of expression Act that Stefan Löfven and his government want to prohibit popular Swedish sites such as Lexbase and Fria Tider, referring to the fact that they contain \"sensitive personal data.\" Neither alternative media nor any of the sites are explicitly mentioned in the bill, but the company behind Lexbase, Verifiera AB, is one of the referral bodies.

When the government sent out the first version of the bill to Swedish leftist universities and other referral bodies, it was met with harsh criticism. The government had namely proposed to ban the publication of data revealing \"race\" - something that is a social construction according to the official ideology in Sweden and other parts of the United States-controlled part of the world.

The Faculty of Law at the Lund University opposes the use of the expression and instead proposes that the wording \"concept of race\" is to be used. At Uppsala University, the Faculty of Law replies that \"race\" should be replaced by \"ethnic origin, skin color or other similar relationship.\"

If the law passes, it could mean an end to the truth coming out of Sweden, and a total victory for fake news, represented by SVT, Expressen, Aftonbladet and other news organizations that are spreading disinformation to keep people from objecting to the ongoing cultural suicide, which will (most likely) eventually end up in a bloody civil war.

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I think we forget sometimes as Americans that the First Amendment doesn’t cover the whole world. The American left may be attacking free speech in this country, but they don’t have much hope of succeeding at the moment, at least, given that we still have a slight conservative majority on the Supreme Court that’s willing to defend the Constitution (most of the time).

The rest of the world is an entirely different story, and that could present a problem for social media companies who understandably wish to operate on a global basis. And the problem is no longer just theoretical. Germany has just made it very real:

German lawmakers have passed a controversial law under which Facebook, Twitter, and other social media companies could face fines of up to €50 million ($57 million) for failing to remove hate speech. The Network Enforcement Act, commonly referred to as the “Facebook law,” was passed by the Bundestag, Germany’s parliamentary body, on Friday. It will go into effect in October.

Under the law, social media companies would face steep fines for failing to remove “obviously illegal” content — including hate speech, defamation, and incitements to violence — within 24 hours. They would face an initial fine of €5 million, which could rise to €50 million. Web companies would have up to one week to decide on cases that are less clear cut.

Justice Minister Heiko Maas and other supporters of the bill have argued that it is necessary to curb the spread of hate speech, which is strictly regulated under German law. But digital rights activists have broadly criticized the law, saying it would infringe on free speech, and that it gives tech companies disproportionate responsibility in determining the legality of online content.

“Experience has shown that, without political pressure, the large platform operators will not fulfill their obligations, and this law is therefore imperative,” Maas said in an address Friday, adding that “freedom of expression ends where criminal law begins.”

“We believe the best solutions will be found when government, civil society and industry work together and that this law as it stands now will not improve efforts to tackle this important societal problem,” a Facebook spokesperson said in an email statement. “We feel that the lack of scrutiny and consultation do not do justice to the importance of the subject. We will continue to do everything we can to ensure safety for the people on our platform.”

Biggest problem here concerns concept of “hate speech,” since it apparently leaves it to government to define what that is

Clearly, the biggest problem here concerns concept of “hate speech,” since it apparently leaves it to government to define what that is. And if Facebook is going to operate on a global basis, but the government of one nation can fine it whenever someone posts “hate speech” as defined by that one government, how can Facebook reasonably be expected to function?

(I realize this includes Twitter too, but I’m not going to keep mentioning Twitter because I hate it. Uh oh! Hate speech!)

Come to think of it, how far do you take this? What if a Facebook post doesn’t actually include any “hate speech” in its own right, but links to an article that does in the opinion of the German government? Or what if the article doesn’t, but some other article on the same site does? How far do you go in enforcing the ban on “hate speech”?

And of course, there’s also the problem of what constitutes hate speech. Does this article qualify? There’s not a hateful word in it, nor was there a hateful thought in my heart when I wrote it. But you know that doesn’t matter to the thought police. We posted the article on Facebook and the traffic it generated was phenomenal. Could we do the same thing now? Or would Facebook delete it for fear of getting fined by the German government?

Remember, there is no First Amendment outside the United States

There is also the question of just what constitutes “fake news”. A story on some weird site that claims Paul Ryan and Chuck Schumer are aliens? Clearly. (There’s no way they both are.) But what about a totally false CNN story about Trump/Russia “collusion” that ends up having to be retracted because it’s 100 percent wrong? Why isn’t that fake news? Or a New York Times editorial that attemps to link Sarah Palin to the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords? That’s totally false too. Have at it, German government! Let’s impose those fines!

I want to be optimistic that the legal rights of social media outlets will prevail here, but remember, there is no First Amendment outside the United States. I’m having a hard time coming up with a reason I should be optimistic that this, or some future attempt by some other country, won’t totally change the way we use social media - and not for the better.

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The US National Security Agency tapped phone calls involving German chancellor Angela Merkel and her closest advisers for years and spied on the staff of her predecessors, according to WikiLeaks.

A report released by the group on Wednesday suggested NSA spying on Merkel and her staff had gone on far longer and more widely than previously realised. WikiLeaks said the NSA targeted 125 phone numbers of top German officials for long-term surveillance .

The release risks renewing tensions between Germany and the US a month after they sought to put a row over spying behind them, with Barack Obama declaring in Bavaria that the two nations were “inseparable allies”.

WikiLeaks published what it said were three NSA intercepts of Merkel’s conversations, and data it said listed telephone numbers for the chancellor, her aides, her office and even her fax machine.

“The names associated with some of the targets indicate that spying on the Chancellery predates Angela Merkel as it includes staff of former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder (in office 1998-2002), and his predecessor Helmut Kohl,” WikiLeaks added in a statement.

No comment was immediately available from the German government.

The intercepts released on Wednesday detailed communications from Merkel in 2009 regarding the international financial crisis, with the crown prince of the United Arab Emirates in 2009 on Iran, and with advisers in 2011 on the eurozone crisis.

The targeted phone numbers included those for the phones of senior officials at the Chancellery and included that of Ronald Pofalla, Merkel’s former chief of staff, WikiLeaks said.

Spying is a sensitive issue in Germany because of abuses committed during the Nazi and Communist eras. Revelations by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden about wide-ranging US espionage in Germany caused outrage when they surfaced.

The spying row has also been stirred by allegations that Merkel’s staff gave the German BND foreign intelligence agency a green light to help the NSA spy on European firms and officials.

The latest WikiLeaks release comes just over a week after it published a report showing the NSA wiretapped the communications of two successive French finance ministers and collected information on French export contracts, trade and budget talks.


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German authorities are taking action against 36 people suspected of posting hate speech online, most of them accused of far-right incitement.

The Federal Criminal Police Office said police across the country searched homes of suspects, questioned them and took unspecified “further measures” early Tuesday. There was no word of any arrests.

The so-called “day of action against hate postings” followed a similar exercise last year. The police office said most of the postings targeted Tuesday had a far-right motivation, but authorities also targeted a suspected anti-government extremist, two far-left suspects and one case where the victim’s sexual orientation was attacked.

In April, the Cabinet approved a bill to punish social networking sites if they fail to swiftly remove illegal content such as hate speech. Parliament has yet to approve it.

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On April 4, 2017, the US Senate passed Senate Resolution 118, \"Condemning hate crime and any other form of racism, religious or ethnic bias, discrimination, incitement to violence, or animus targeting a minority in the United States\". The resolution was drafted by a Muslim organization, EmgageUSA (formerly EmergeUSA) and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC). On April 6, 2017, EmgageUSA wrote the following on their Facebook page:

Thanks to the hard work of Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Dianne Feinstein, Senator Susan Collins and Senator Kamala Harris we have achieved the approval of Senate Resolution 118, an anti-hate crimes bill drafted by Emerge-USA. It is days like this that Americans are reminded of this country's founding principles: equal opportunity, freedom, justice. We are proud to help support the protection of these rights #amoreperfectunion #theamericandream.

Senate Resolution 118 calls on

...Federal law enforcement officials, working with State and local officials... to expeditiously investigate all credible reports of hate crimes and incidents and threats against minorities in the United States and to hold the perpetrators of those crimes, incidents, or threats accountable and bring the perpetrators to justice; encourages the Department of Justice and other Federal agencies to work to improve the reporting of hate crimes; and... encourages the development of an interagency task force led by the Attorney General to collaborate on the development of effective strategies and efforts to detect and deter hate crime in order to protect minority communities...

The resolution refers to hate crimes against Muslims, Jews, African-Americans, Hindus, and Sikhs and was sponsored by Senator Kamala Harris and co-sponsored by Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Dianne Feinstein, and Senator Susan Collins.

On April 6, almost the exact same text was introduced as House Resolution H.Res. 257, \"Condemning hate crime and any other form of racism, religious or ethnic bias, discrimination, incitement to violence, or animus targeting a minority in the United States\". A House Resolution can be reintroduced as legislation.

H.Res. 257 urges

...the development of an interagency task force led by the Attorney General and bringing together the Department of Justice, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Education, the Department of State, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to collaborate on the development of effective strategies and efforts to detect and deter hate crime in order to protect minority communities. The House Resolution was referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary on April 6 and from there it was referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations on April 21.

Americans should be concerned about these resolutions, especially the part of the House Resolution, which urges the establishment of an \"interagency task force led by the Attorney General ... on the development of effective strategies and efforts to detect and deter hate crime in order to protect minority communities.\"

What is a hate crime in this context? The law already prohibits violence and threats of violence, and law enforcement authorities are supposed to prosecute those -- intimidation, destruction, damage, vandalism, simple and aggravated assault. What do \"strategies and efforts to detect and deter hate crime\" entail, and again, what \"hate crimes\" are not already covered by the law? In other words, why would the House of Representatives find it necessary to make such redundant statements, if not in order to redefine the concept of a hate crime? Perhaps by including \"hate speech\"?

The US has been in a similar situation before. In December 2015, House Resolution H.Res. 569 \"Condemning violence, bigotry, and hateful rhetoric towards Muslims in the United States\" was introduced. That resolution never went any farther, but it was problematic: it favored Muslims over everyone else. The current resolution includes most of the major ethnic and religious minorities in the United States, so it will have a far better chance of passing, as it will more easily fool Representatives into thinking that the contents of the resolution are harmless.

The drafters of Senate Resolution 118 and House Resolution 257, are two Muslim organizations, EmgageUSA (formerly known as EmergeUSA) and the Muslim Public Affairs Council. This is what EmgageUSA published on its website on April 6, 2017:

We are excited to report that EmergeUSA and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) worked with Senator Kamala Harris to introduce Senate Resolution #118, which was passed unanimously today. The historic resolution is the first of its kind to condemn hate crimes and other forms of racism. The hate crimes extend beyond targeting just Muslim and Jewish Americans to also include religious minorities such as Hindu and Sikh Americans... EmergeUSA is committed to engaging, and empowering the Muslim American community via the political process by working towards making federal and state legislation and policies more equitable for the Muslim American community.

EmgageUSA goes on to tell its members to thank senator Kamala Harris and her co-sponsors, as well as to urge their congressmen to support \"similar resolutions\" when they come up, and to also urge their local representatives to adopt such resolutions. In other words, this campaign is to be a nationwide effort.

In a blog post in The Hill, Chief Executive Officer of EmgageUSA, Wa'el Alzayat, wrote:

On April 5, the Senate unanimously adopted Resolution 118... As a Muslim American, I am grateful for this welcome gesture to help address the troubling rise in hate crimes against immigrants and ethnic and religious minorities... The Muslim American community has been on the receiving end of a long-running campaign of Islamophobia that pre-dates the current political climate... Senate Resolution 118 is a welcome and necessary step from our national leaders, but much more needs to be done; not only by our government, but also by average citizens, especially Muslim Americans...

On May 6, EmgageUSA published the following on its Facebook page:

Representative Barbara Comstock, second term Republican from Virginia's 10thDistrict is teaming up with EmergeUSA and MPAC to successfully pass a House Resolution which condemns ethnic, religious and racial hate crimes. The bi-partisan resolution was co-sponsored by Representatives Dingell, Taylor and Curbelo and mirrors its Senate Counterpart, S. Res. 118... The Resolution is now in the House and we need you to help pass it. Take action and contact your Representatives today and urge them to sign on to pass this resolution.

Would it not be appropriate for the politicians sponsoring and voting for these resolutions first of all to find out what drives the organizations responsible for drafting them?

EmgageUSA likes to describe itself as a civil rights style organization, \"non-partisan\" with the innocent sounding purpose of:

...develop[ing] the capacity of the Muslim voter to ensure that our narrative is part of the American fabric. Our programs include civic educational events such as issue forums and town halls, voter initiatives including Get Out The Vote (GOTV), and specific programs for the youth in order to mentor and support the next generation of leaders.

The co-founder of EmgageUSA (founded in 2006 as EmergeUSA), Khurrum Wahid, a South Florida attorney, is the organization's National Board Co-Chair. In a 2011 interview with The Intelligence Report, the magazine of the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), Wahid listed the numerous cases in which he has represented terrorists, including members of Al Qaeda, such as Omar Ahmed Abu Ali, who was sentenced to 30 years in prison in 2006 for joining al-Qaeda and plotting to assassinate President George W. Bush, Shahawar Matin Siraj, who was sentenced to 30 years in prison in 2007 for conspiring to plant bombs in New York City; Dr. Rafiq Sabir, who was convicted of conspiring to treat injured al-Qaeda fighters and was sentenced to 25 years in prison in 2007; Syed Hashmi, who was sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2010 for providing supplies and money to a senior al-Qaeda commander in Afghanistan. He also represented Hafiz Khan, who was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison in 2013 for funneling tens of thousands of dollars to the Pakistani Taliban.

Khurrum Wahid appears to have a positive view of the terrorists he has represented, despite their proven guilt. According to a 2012 interview with Miami New Times:

He [Wahid] believes terrorism cases are, in many ways, the civil rights battles of his generation. While outsiders might paint his clients as criminals, he says people... are being prosecuted for giving money to groups the U.S. government doesn't like. \"I think these things are not so black-and-white... I think innocent people get caught up in the politics.\"

In 2011, Wahid himself was put on a terror list. Asked by the Miami New Times about this fact Wahid said, \"It tells me that the system is broken.\"

Khurrum Wahid is a former board member of the Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). CAIR has repeatedly been identified as a Muslim Brotherhood front group.

EmgageUSA has hosted Islamic lecturer Sayed Ammar Nakshawani repeatedly at its yearly events. Nakshawani, has called for the destruction of Israel, saying \"It is barbaric that this Zionist state is allowed to continue\".

EmergeUSA has collaborated with the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) to \"engage American Muslims\" in last year's elections. Like CAIR, ISNA was one of the unindicted co-conspirators of the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) named by the US government in the HLF, with offenses including conspiracy to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization, namely, Hamas.

According to the Investigative Project on Terrorism:

Far from being the zealous champion of civil rights that it presents itself to be, the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) has followed a consistent pattern of defending designated terrorist organizations and their supporters, opposing U.S. counterterrorism efforts and spouting anti-Semitic rhetoric.

The Investigative Project on Terrorism has authored a damning 88-page report about MPAC. American politicians do not seem to have taken much interest in it.

The question that all Americans ought to ask their representatives is this: Why do they let themselves be duped by policy initiatives driven by terrorist sympathizers and activists associated with Muslim Brotherhood front groups?

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