Monday, December 21, 2015

 

LIBERAL ONTARIO LEADER WYNN WANTS CLEAR REGULATIONS ON LEGALIZED MARIJUANA.THE LIQUOR STORES CAN SELL IT WITH THE OTHER ADDICTION ALCOHOL.SAYS LESBIEN WYNN.WHY DON'T THEY SELL PROSTITUES OUTTA THE LIQUOR STORES ALSO MY SUGGESTION.THEN THE ADDICTED PROSTITUTE FROM THE MARIJUANA CAN SELL HERSELF OUT BACK OF THE LIQUOR STORE. THEN AFTER THE JOHN LEAVES.SHE CAN GO OUT FRONT AND FULFILL HER ALCOHOL OR DRUG ADDICTION-BY BUYING THE ADDICTION RIGHT FROM HER PROSTITUTION OFFICE.WILL THAT BE JOHN GET IT FOR ME.OR TELLER I NEED MY FIX-HERES THE CASH.PLEASE BRING IT INTO MY ROOM PLEASE.

JEWISH KING JESUS IS COMING AT THE RAPTURE FOR US IN THE CLOUDS-DON'T MISS IT FOR THE WORLD.THE BIBLE TAKEN LITERALLY- WHEN THE PLAIN SENSE MAKES GOOD SENSE-SEEK NO OTHER SENSE-LEST YOU END UP IN NONSENSE.GET SAVED NOW- CALL ON JESUS TODAY.THE ONLY SAVIOR OF THE WHOLE EARTH - NO OTHER. 1 COR 15:23-JESUS THE FIRST FRUITS-CHRISTIANS RAPTURED TO JESUS-FIRST FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT-23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.ROMANS 8:23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.(THE PRE-TRIB RAPTURE)

California shooter's spouse visa approved despite questions, lawmaker says-Reuters By Fiona Ortiz-December 19, 2015 2:16 PM-YAHOONEWS

(Reuters) - United States immigration officials failed to obtain required proof from San Bernardino shooter Tashfeen Malik that she had met her U.S. citizen fiancé in person, but granted her a spousal visa anyway, a Republican congressman said on Saturday.The new questions over the granting of the visa to Malik, raised by Congressman Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, suggest she was the beneficiary of a lapsed government vetting process now under intense scrutiny after the Dec. 2 attack that killed 14 people at a holiday party in the Southern California city."In order to obtain a fiancée visa, it is required to demonstrate proof that the U.S. citizen and foreign national have met in person. However, Malik's immigration file does not show sufficient evidence for this requirement," Goodlatte said in a statement.Investigators say U.S.-born Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, and Malik, 29, became radicalized long before the shooting. They are believed to have been inspired by militant group Islamic State.Goodlatte said his office conducted an investigation of how Malik obtained her spousal, or K-1, visa. They found that the official who reviewed Malik's application asked for more evidence that she had met her fiancé but it was never provided.The Department of Homeland Security and for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement did not immediately respond on Saturday to requests for comment.U.S. officials previously said that U.S. authorities in Pakistan, Malik's home country, did not seek a full background security investigation on her because routine checks did not raise suspicions.Well before he married Malik in August 2014, Farook had plotted mass casualty attacks with his friend and neighbor, Enrique Marquez, according to FBI interviews with Marquez, 24, who was arrested on Thursday and charged with conspiring to provide material support to terrorists.Goodlatte said that Farook stated he had been together with Malik in Saudi Arabia, and supplied copies of passport pages with visas to enter Saudi Arabia. But, Goodlatte said, the passport stamps were never translated from Arabic to determine the dates on the visas.Goodlatte said Malik entered Saudi Arabia approximately June 4, 2013, with a 60-day visa, though her exit date stamp is illegible. Farook's passport shows he was in Saudi Arabia Oct. 1-20 that same year."Even if Farook and Malik were in Saudi Arabia at the same time, this does not provide evidence that they met in person," said Goodlatte.(Reporting by Fiona Ortiz in Chicago; Editing by Sara Catania and Mary Milliken)

California governor declares emergency in response to San Bernardino attack-Reuters By Sharon Bernstein-December 18, 2015 9:28 PM-YAHOONEWS

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Reuters) - California Governor Jerry Brown on Friday declared a state of emergency in San Bernardino County, following the massacre by an Islamic State-inspired couple at a holiday party for county workers.Because the 14 people killed and 26 wounded in the terrorist attack were largely employees in the county's environmental health department, the massacre left San Bernardino County with too few health inspectors and others needed to carry out critical work, Brown said in his emergency proclamation.Declaring an emergency will allow the state to send in health inspectors as replacements until the county is able to resume normal staffing, Brown said.The declaration also allows the state Office of Emergency Services to provide other assistance to the county as needed.As part of the declaration, Brown also ordered the suspension of all fees normally charged when residents request a death certificate or seek to bury someone.The Dec. 2 attack was carried out by a county restaurant inspector, Syed Rizwan Farook, and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, at the offices of the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, where environment health department employees had gathered for a meeting and holiday party.Prior reports had listed the number of wounded as 21, but Brown in his declaration cited 26.(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein; Editing by Leslie Adler)

Paris attacks suspect got past three police checks: source-AFP-DEC 20,15-YAHOONEWS

Brussels (AFP) - Wanted fugitive Salah Abdeslam, suspected of involvement in last month's Paris attacks, got past three police checks in France as he fled to Belgium just hours after the terror assaults, a source close to the Belgian investigation said Sunday.Confirming a report in the French daily Le Parisien, the source quoted Hamza Attou, suspected along with Mohammed Amri of driving Abdeslam to Brussels the day after the coordinated November 13 attacks in which 130 people died.At the first checkpoint Attou and Amri admitted to police that they had just smoked marijuana, but were let go, the source said.All three are from the gritty Brussels suburb of Molenbeek.Abdeslam sent a text message asking Attou and Amri to come for him, and they found him "agitated... uneasy... unwell," the source said.Then came a threat: "He told us to take him back to Brussels or he would blow up the car," Attou said, according to the source.To underscore the threat, Abdeslam bragged about killing people with a Kalashnikov, adding that his brother Brahim had blown himself up.Seven attackers blew themselves up or were killed by police in the course of the evening on November 13. Five of them have been identified.To avoid police checks, Abdeslam asked Attou and Amri to take minor roads, but they got lost and wound up on a motorway, Attou said.At the first checkpoint they were asked if they had "consumed" any substances.Abdeslam was in the back seat and said nothing, while Amri and Attou replied "yes" because they had just smoked marijuana."The policeman said that was not good, but it was not the priority today," Attou said, according to the source.They were not asked for their papers, but they were at the second and third police checkpoints.At the third stop, near Cambrai in the far north of France, Abdeslam even gave his address in Molenbeek.They stopped for petrol and Abdeslam went to the toilet, walking back with his jacket open, revealing that he was not carrying the explosives which Attou and Amri had been led to believe he had on him, the source told AFP.Abdeslam had told them he left his brother's ID card in a car -- he did not say which car -- "so that he would be known the world over like Coulibaly".He was referring to Amedy Coulibaly, who killed a policewoman in Paris on January 8 as part of the series of attacks that began with the massacre at the offices of the satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo.'It's on, we've started' -The following day Coulibaly took hostages at a kosher supermarket, killing four before being gunned down in a police operation.The three days of horror in January left 17 people dead.The investigation into the November gun and suicide attacks, claimed by the Islamist State group, is being conducted in both France and Belgium, the home country of several of the attackers.A French source close to the investigation confirmed Le Parisien's report that one of the attackers at the Bataclan concert hall where 90 people were massacred sent a text message to a Belgian number saying "It's on, we've started".Two men are in detention in France on suspicion of providing lodging to the presumed mastermind of the attacks, Abdelhamid Abaaoud.Abaaoud was killed in a police raid a few days after the attacks.In Belgium, eight men have been jailed including four accused of helping Abdeslam get away in the hours after the attacks.Suspected accomplices have also been arrested in Austria.Abdeslam, a 26-year-old French national, remains at large.

Britain eyes legal protection for gun police after Paris attacks-Reuters-DEC 20,15-YAHOONEWS

LONDON (Reuters) - British armed police could get greater legal protection if they shoot suspected criminals after Prime Minister David Cameron ordered a review of current laws in the light of mass shootings in Paris last month, the Sunday Times reported.Following the attacks by Islamist militants in Paris which killed 130 people, London police have said they could deal with a similar style of assault but that they are looking to increase the number of armed officers on patrol.Unlike most forces around the world, British police are not routinely armed and currently just over 2,000 of London's 31,000 officers are able to carry guns.The Sunday Times, citing a senior government source, said Cameron was prepared to change current laws to give those armed officers greater protection against prosecution."Terrorist incidents both at home and abroad have shown very clearly the life-and-death decisions police officers have to make in split-second circumstances," the source said, according to the newspaper.The paper reported that the government would review whether existing laws go far enough to support officers. Currently armed police can defend their use of weapons if they "honestly and instinctively" believe that doing so is reasonable."We must make sure that when police take the ultimate decision to protect the safety of the public they do so with the full support of the law and the state — there can be no room for hesitation when lives are at risk," the source told the newspaper.Last week police launched a murder investigation and arrested a firearms officer after the fatal shooting of a 28-year-old man in north London.(Reporting by William James; Editing by Gareth Jones)

Mistrial underscores prosecutors' tough task in Baltimore police cases-Reuters By Joseph Ax-December 16, 2015 8:14 PM-YAHOONEWS

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A mistrial on Wednesday in the case of the first of six Baltimore police officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray shows the risk the city prosecutor took in moving aggressively to bring criminal charges, legal experts said.Gray's April death of injuries sustained while in police custody came at a time of high racial tensions in the United States following police killings of other black men in cities including New York and Ferguson, Missouri, and sparked rioting and arson in the majority black city of 620,000 people.The trial of Officer William Porter had been intended to lay the groundwork for the prosecutions of other officers involved in Gray's death, plans that have been thrown into disarray by the inability of the jury to reach a verdict.The mistrial could renew criticism that the state's attorney, Marilyn Mosby, overreached in bringing manslaughter and other serious charges against the officers, only a day after police completed their investigation into the death."She didn't go where the evidence led her," said Steven Levin, a former federal prosecutor and now a defense lawyer in Baltimore. "She went where constituents wanted her to go." Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams has imposed a gag order on all attorneys involved in the case and Mosby's office said it would have no comment on the mistrial.-TOUGH TO PROVE-Legal experts who followed the trial closely said the charges against Porter, which included involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault and reckless endangerment, made for a tough case to prove. Prosecutors argued that Porter, who is also black, failed to buckle Gray's seatbelt and then ignored his pleas for medical attention.Porter testified he thought Gray was faking and that he was unaware the prisoner was in mortal danger until they arrived at the police station."This was an incredibly difficult legal case," said David Jaros, a law professor at the University of Baltimore. "It's hard to convict someone based on an omission under any circumstances."The case's complexity stands in contrast to other recent instances in which officers have been criminally charged for killing suspects, including in Chicago where an officer was charged with murder for shooting a black teenager 16 times in an incident caught on video.Andy Levy, a litigator in Baltimore, said Porter's testimony, which he said appeared credible, undermined prosecutors' effort to paint him as a criminal."It was difficult to make a villain out of Officer Porter," he said. "This was not a police officer with a history of disciplinary infractions."Mosby's decision in some sense serves as a counterpoint to the criticism leveled at authorities in Ferguson, Missouri, and New York for failing to secure indictments for officers involved in the killing of unarmed black men, observers said."Not all prosecutors would have brought these charges," Levy said. "It was a ballsy move on her part."It is unclear whether Porter will be retried before the other five trials. If Porter had been convicted, the state planned to call him as a witness against Caesar Goodson, the van driver, whom Porter claimed to have told about Gray's request for medical aid.But legal experts said it was not clear prosecutors could have compelled Porter to testify, given that he might expose himself to potential federal civil charges. The U.S. Department of Justice has said it is investigating Gray's death.Perhaps the most surprising aspect of the mistrial, Levy said, was the judge's decision to dismiss the jurors after only 16 hours rather than force them to continue."Given the resources and the high visibility of the case, it seemed a little precipitous," Levy said.Earlier this year in the high-profile New York trial of Pedro Hernandez, accused of killing 6-year-old Etan Patz in New York in 1979, the trial judge repeatedly instructed jurors to continue talking for more than a week after they first said they were dead locked.He finally declared a mistrial after 18 days of deliberations.(Additional reporting by Ian Simpson and Donna Owens in Baltimore; Editing by Scott Malone and Lisa Shumaker)

SPAIN #11 IN THE EU

DANIEL 7:23-24
23 Thus he said, The fourth beast(THE EU,REVIVED ROME) shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth,(7TH WORLD EMPIRE) which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.(TR BLOCKS)
24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise:(10 NATIONS) and another shall rise after them;(#11 SPAIN) and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings.(BE HEAD OF 3 KINGS OR NATIONS).

Spain's ruling conservatives win election, short of majority-Reuters By Adrian Croft and Jesús Aguado-DEC 20,15-YAHOONEWS

MADRID (Reuters) - Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy won Spain's general election on Sunday, exit polls showed, but his center-right party fell short of an absolute majority and will need allies if it is to govern for another four-year term.If confirmed, such results would give way to coalition-building talks that could take many weeks with no easy pact apparently in reach. The Spanish constitution does not set a specific deadline to form a government after the election.Despite garnering the most votes, Rajoy's People's Party (PP) got its worst result ever in a general election, polls showed, as Spaniards hurt by a grinding recession and yet to feel an economic recovery turned away in droves from the party.Newcomers anti-austerity Podemos and liberal Ciudadanos made big gains, coming third and fourth respectively, ending a decades-long two-party political system and ushering in a new and potentially volatile era of compromise politics.That points to a stalemate, probably disrupting an economic reform program that has helped pull Spain - the fifth-largest economy in the European Union - out of recession and dented a still sky-high unemployment rate."This result confirms Spain has entered an era of political fragmentation," said Teneo Intelligence analysts Antonio Barroso. "It's clear that parties will have to negotiate and forming a government could be pretty complicated."The results suggest at least three parties would have to join to form a coalition government on either side of the political spectrum and none of the main combinations predicted before the vote would reach an absolute majority.A pact between the PP and Ciudadanos would get 174 seats under a best case scenario, just below the 176 mark of the absolute majority.An alliance between the Socialists, Podemos and the former communists of Izquierda Unida would get 169 seats at best, although they could potentially attract a further 15 seats from smaller leftist regional groups.A minority PP government would be technically possible but unlikely due to the strong left-wing vote, as would be a grand coalition between the PP and the Socialists, which both parties vehemently ruled out during campaigning.At the PP headquarters in central Madrid, a party spokesman said it was clear the party had won the most votes but that the night was not over. A few dozen supporters gathered, waiting for Rajoy's appearance."I don't understand, it's very unfair," said Marta de Alfonso Molero, a 48-year-old chemist who has voted PP all her life, speaking of the poor showing for the party. "They have dragged Spain up these last four years."Hundreds of supporters for leftist newcomer Podemos gathered at a theater in Madrid cheered at the exit polls, which showed the barely two-year-old party coming third in number of seats and actually beating the traditional left-wing faction PSOE in percentage of vote.A mostly young crowd, some wearing fancy dress, chanted "Yes we can" as results from the regions came in."It makes me happy because Podemos means a change for people and society," said Santiago Gel, a 31-year-old doctor.(Additional reporting by the Madrid Newsroom, writing by Sonya Dowsett; Editing by Julien Toyer/Ruth Pitchford)

EU states extend Russia sanctions by six months-By EUOBSERVER

18. Dec, 17:41-EU states' ambassadors in Brussels on Friday agreed to extend economic sanctions on Russia by six months. EU capitals are to complete formalities by written procedure at noon on Monday. The decision is to become legally binding when it is published in the bloc's gazette, the Official Journal, on Tuesday.

Leaders impose June deadline for EU border force By Nikolaj Nielsen-euobserver

BRUSSELS, 18. Dec, 05:44-A plan to create an European border and coast guard system was backed by EU leaders at a summit in Brussels on Thursday (17 December).Despite outstanding issues over national sovereignty, leaders agreed to have the Council, representing member states, adopt its legislative position before the end of June next year."Above all, we are failing to protect our external borders. That is why leaders have decided to speed up on all these issues," the EU Council chief Donald Tusk told reporters.First announced by the European Commission earlier this week, the proposal is part of a larger border package designed to curb the inflow of people seeking asylum in the EU.Some 1.2 million asylum seekers arrived in the EU since the start of the year, representing a 90 percent increase compared to 2014.Most landed on the Greek islands in the Aegean after disembarking from Turkey. From there, they head to Macedonia and onward to mainland EU.Bad weather has helped stem the flow of refugees since the start of November.The new border agency would be able to draw from a pool of 1,500 guards. The European commission would be entitled to dispatch the guards without the consent of the nation state if required.The measure, described by one EU official as "the invasion clause," is unlikely to garner broad support among the 28 capitals.But leaders on Thursday wanted to send a strong political signal, noting that regaining control over external borders is indispensable in safeguarding the "integrity" of the EU's passport-free Schengen zone.Germany's chancellor Angela Merkel said there is now an awareness that preserving Schengen and controlling migratory flows are interlinked.Germany, in mid-September, had introduced internal border checks amid large numbers of asylum seekers transiting through Austria. Similar moves were made by the Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Sweden, and Slovakia.Fears are mounting that more internal border controls would eventually lead to Schengen's collapse unless the external borders are better managed.Turkey is seen as a key component.In late November, the EU and Turkey agreed a €3 billion deal in an effort improve refugee camp conditions in Turkey and help with integration efforts of Syrians in Turkish society.The hope among EU leaders is that Syrians and others in Turkey would have less incentive to apply for international protection in the EU.Turkey, for its part, wants the EU states to pay up, hasten visa free liberalisation for Turks, resume EU membership talks, and start resettling UN designated refugees from Turkey to EU states.But resettlement of refugees is a tricky issue in the EU.A similar scheme had been launched by the European Commission over the summer to resettle some 20,000 over two years on a voluntary basis but they are few takers. Only around 600 have so far been resettled.The commission then asked member states earlier this week to also to take in refugees from Turkey on the condition that the flow of people into Europe from Turkey is reduced.Asked by reporters if the latest resettlement plan with Turkey is feasible, EU commission president Jean-Claude Juncker said "it will be done".Tusk responded in kind: "It will be done for sure."EU leaders also remain unclear if the bulk of the €3 billion will come from the EU budget or national coffers.A meeting of EU ambassadors has been asked to "rapidly conclude its work on how to mobilise the €3 billion."Greece, for its, part wants Turkey to apply bilateral readmission agreements for the return of non-refugees from places like Pakistan, Iran, and Morocco.

LUKE 21:28-29
28 And when these things begin to come to pass,(ALL THE PROPHECY SIGNS FROM THE BIBLE) then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption (RAPTURE) draweth nigh.
29 And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree,(ISRAEL) and all the trees;(ALL INDEPENDENT COUNTRIES)
30 When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand.(ISRAEL LITERALLY BECAME AND INDEPENDENT COUNTRY JUST BEFORE SUMMER IN MAY 14,1948.)

JOEL 2:3,30
3 A fire devoureth (ATOMIC BOMB) before them;(RUSSIAN-ARAB-MUSLIM ARMIES AGAINST ISRAEL) and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.
30 And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.(ATOMIC BOMB AFFECT)

ZECHARIAH 14:12-13
12 And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet,(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB) and their eyes shall consume away in their holes,(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB) and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth.(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB)(BECAUSE NUKES HAVE BEEN USED ON ISRAELS ENEMIES)(GOD PROTECTS ISRAEL AND ALWAYS WILL)
13 And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour.(1/2-3 BILLION DIE IN WW3)(THIS IS AN ATOMIC BOMB EFFECT)

EZEKIEL 20:47
47 And say to the forest of the south, Hear the word of the LORD; Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee, and every dry tree: the flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burned therein.

ZEPHANIAH 1:18
18 Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD'S wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land.

MALACHI 4:1
1 For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven;(FROM ATOMIC BOMBS) and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.

And here are the bounderies of the land that Israel will inherit either through war or peace or God in the future. God says its Israels land and only Israels land. They will have every inch God promised them of this land in the future.
Egypt east of the Nile River, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, The southern part of Turkey and the Western Half of Iraq west of the Euphrates. Gen 13:14-15, Psm 105:9,11, Gen 15:18, Exe 23:31, Num 34:1-12, Josh 1:4.ALL THIS LAND ISRAEL WILL DEFINATELY OWN IN THE FUTURE, ITS ISRAELS NOT ISHMAELS LAND.
12 TRIBES INHERIT LAND IN THE FUTURE

Fethullah Gulen: “Muslims, we have to critically review our understanding of Islam”-dec 20,15-euobserver

Words fall short to truly express my deep sadness and revolt in the face of the carnage perpetrated by terrorist groups such as the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).I share profound frustration with a billion-and-a-half Muslims around the world at the fact that such groups commit terrorism while dressing up their perverted ideologies as religion. We Muslims have a special responsibility to not only join hands with fellow human beings to save our world from the scourge of terrorism and violent extremism, but also to help repair the tarnished image of our faith.It is easy to proclaim a certain identity in the abstract with words and symbols. The sincerity of such claims, however, can only be measured by comparing our actions with the core values of our self-proclaimed identities. The true test of belief is not slogans or dressing up in a certain way; the true test of our beliefs is in living up to core principles shared by all major world faiths such as upholding the sanctity of life and respecting the dignity of all humans.We must categorically condemn the ideology propagated by terrorists and instead promote a pluralistic mindset with clarity and confidence. After all, before our ethnic, national or religious identity comes our common humanity, which suffers a setback each time a barbaric act is committed. French citizens who lost their lives in Paris, Shiite Muslim Lebanese citizens who lost their lives in Beirut a day earlier and scores of Sunni Muslims in Iraq who lost their lives at the hands of the same terrorists are first and foremost human beings. Our civilization will not progress until we treat the suffering of humans regardless of their religious or ethnic identity as equally tragic in our empathy and respond with the same determination.Muslims must also reject and avoid conspiracy theories, which have so far only helped us avoid facing our social problems. Instead, we must tackle the real questions: Do our communities provide recruitment grounds for groups with totalitarian mindsets due to unrecognized authoritarianism within ourselves, domestic physical abuse, neglect of youth and lack of balanced education? Did our failure to establish basic human rights and freedoms, supremacy of the rule of law and pluralist mindsets in our communities lead those who are struggling to seek alternative paths? The recent tragedy in Paris is yet another reminder for both theologians and ordinary Muslims to strongly reject and condemn barbaric acts perpetrated in the name of our religion. However, at this juncture, rejection and condemnation are not enough; terrorist recruitment within Muslim communities must be fought and countered by an effective collaboration of state authorities, religious leaders and civil society actors. We must organize community- wide efforts to address all factors that aid terrorist recruitment.-Ways of expressing support and dissent within democratic means-We need to work with our community to set up the necessary framework for identifying at-risk youth, preventing them from seeking self-destructive paths, assisting families with counseling and other support services. We must promote a proactive, positive government engagement so that engaged Muslim citizens can sit at the table where counterterrorism measures are planned and share their ideas. Our youth should be taught ways of expressing support and dissent within democratic means. Incorporating democratic values into school curricula early on is crucial for inculcating a culture of democracy in young minds.In the aftermath of such tragedies, historically strong reactions have surfaced. Anti-Muslim and anti-religious sentiment as well as security-driven treatment of Muslim citizens by governments would be counter-productive. The Muslim citizens ofEurope want to live in peace and tranquility. Despite the negative climate, they should strive to engage more with their local and national governments to help work toward more inclusive policies that better integrate their community into the larger society.It is also important for us Muslims to critically review our understanding and practice of Islam in light of the conditions and requirements of our age and the clarifications provided by our collective historic experiences. This does not mean a rupture from the cumulative Islamic tradition but rather, an intelligent questioning so we can confirm the true teachings of the Quran and the Prophetic tradition that our Muslim predecessors attempted to reveal.We must proactively marginalize decontextualized reading of our religious sources that have been employed in the service of perverted ideologies. Muslim thinkers and intellectuals should encourage a holistic approach and reconsider jurisprudential verdicts of the Middle Ages that were issued under perpetual conflict where religious affiliation often coincided with political affiliation. Having core beliefs should be distinguished from dogmatism. It is possible, indeed absolutely necessary, to revive the spirit of freedom of thought that gave birth to a renaissance of Islam while staying true to the ethos of the religion. Only in such an atmosphere can Muslims effectively combat incivility and violent extremism.In the aftermath of the recent events I am witnessing, with chagrin, the revival of the thesis of the clash of civilizations. I do not know whether those who first put out such a hypothesis did so out of vision or desire. What is certain is that today, the revival of this rhetoric simply serves the recruitment efforts of the terrorist networks. I want to state clearly that what we are witnessing is not a clash of civilizations but rather the clash of humanity with barbarity in our common civilization.Our responsibility as Muslim citizens is to be part of the solution despite our grievances. If we want to defend the life and civil liberties of Muslims around the world and the peace and tranquility of every human regardless of their faith, we must act now to tackle the violent extremism problem in all its dimensions: political, economic, social and religious. By setting virtuous examples through our lives, by discrediting and marginalizing the extremist interpretations of religious sources, by staying vigilant toward their impact on our youth, and by incorporating democratic values early in education, we can counter violence and terrorism as well as totalitarian ideologies that lead to them.*This article by Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen was first published in Le Monde on Dec. 17, 2015.

Coalition of willing' announces EU-Turkey summit By Eric Maurice-euobserver

BRUSSELS, 17. Dec, 20:06-A new EU-Turkey summit will take place in February, it emerged after a mini-summit in Brussels Thursday (17 December) involving some EU leaders and the Turkish prime minister.All 28 member states will be invited to the meeting, which is to take place just before the regular EU summit on 18-19 February, but it is not clear whether all will participate."The aim will be to take stock of the implementation of the EU-Turkey action plan" agreed in November, seeking to reduce the number of migrants to Europe, an EU source told EUobserver."The existing agreements will be reviewed," the source noted, mentioning the destruction of migrant smuggler networks in Turkey and resettlement of refugees from Turkey to Europe.The Netherlands, which will hold the EU rotating presidency from 1 January, said it would invite all member states.-85,000 migrants stopped-The announcement came after a mini-summit organised Thursday morning at the Austrian representation to the EU by the so-called "coalition of the willing" ahead of the full EU summit-The expression refers to the group of countries willing to follow an EU commission recommendation to resettle refugees from Turkey.Netherlands will also set up a working group to examine how the recommendation can be implemented by by those countries which are willing.Leaders of Austria, Germany, Sweden, Finland, Belgium, Luxemburg, The Netherlands, Greece, Portugal, and Slovenia took part in the meeting, along with the presidents of the European Commission and Parliament. France was represented by its EU affairs minister.Resettlement was discussed, but the focus was on what Turkey is doing to implement the action plan.According to a source with knowledge of the talks, Turkish PM Ahmed Davutoglu said that during the last quarter Turkey stopped 85,000 migrants on roads leading to the Turkish coast, where they embark for Greece.Davutoglu said that 1,700 smugglers were arrested and that a law would be passed in the coming weeks to allow Syrians living in Turkey to work.According to German press agency DPA, Davutoglu also informed EU leaders that Turkey will introduce visas for Syrians from 8 January, to slow the numbers of refugees coming to Turkey.Participants decided that another meeting would be necessary to follow up on the situation and assess progress made by Turkey."We should not expect to reduce the flow to zero" in a few weeks, the source noted.The expectation is that numbers should be reduced by next spring. EU countries would then be ready to consider resettling refugees by next summer." Resettlement will only work if the irregular flow has gone to zero," the first EU source said.The "coalition of the willing" considers that resettling migrants is the best way of controlling arrivals of refugees. The prospect of resettlement is on the other hand considered as an incentive for Turkey to implement the action plan.Participating countries differ on how they weigh the two sides of the issue. "Some countries like Germany are ready to do more in resettling refugees. It is not the case of Belgium," Belgian prime minister Charles Michel said after the meeting.-Divisions-Thursday's mini-summit followed a first meeting of eight countries on the margins of the EU-Turkey summit in November.Although the number of participants has increased to 11, the convening of a new EU-Turkey summit is likely to highlight divisions not only between EU member states but also between EU institutions.Who organises the summit could prove controversial.The Netherlands said it will launch the invitation as chair of the rotating EU presidency. But a full-fledged summit is normally organised by European Council president Donald Tusk, who was neither present nor represented at Thursday's mini-event.Who participates could be problematic.Some countries refuse to resettle refugees and might not participate in a summit that would discuss such plans. But the EU commission, which has been pushing for the plan, and some member states, led by Germany, are willing to move forward."If we can't do it at 28, we'll do it with those who want," a source said.This article was updated at 21.16 Thursday 17 December to add more details.

Czech MPs join Hungary in saying No to Israel labels By Andrew Rettman-euobserver

BRUSSELS, 18. Dec, 09:29-The Czech lower house urged the government not to implement an EU code on labels for Israeli settler exports on Thursday (17 December).MPs from all government and opposition parties, except the Communist party, said in a resolution, according to the Reuters news agency, that the EU code is “motivated by a political positioning versus the state of Israel."Daniel Hermann, the Czech culture minister, noted: "It is necessary to reject these attempts that try to discriminate against the only democracy in the Middle East."Frantisek Laudat, an MP from the conservative TOP09 party, said the code evokes “marking Jewish people during World War II.”Marek Benda, an MP from the liberal-conservative ODS party, said it's anti-Semitic. “If the state of Israel fell, Europe would finally fall as well,” he said.The Czech vote comes after Hungary, on Monday, flat-out rejected implementation of the labels. Hungary's foreign minister, Peter Szijjarto, said labelling doesn't contribute to resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and increases unemployment among Palestinians."It is a bad and unreasonable tool," he said.Germany and Greece, two other Israeli allies, have stuck by the code.Also on Monday, EU foreign relations chief Federica Mogherini said the EU Council unanimously supports the scheme.But when asked if states who don’t take action will face punitive measures, she said it’s up to them to decide how to implement the EU “guidelines.” The code, published last month by the European Commission, says most farm products, wine, and cosmetics made by settlers in the Israeli-occupied West Bank or Golan Heights must be labelled so that EU consumers can make an “informed transactional decision.”The Commission has also been fuzzy on implementation, however.When asked by this website, it said the code is voluntary. It said some of the EU consumer laws on which it is based are binding. But it has never launched infringement proceedings on non-compliance with the laws, some of which have been on the books for 10 years.For her part, Tzipi Hotovely, Israel’s deputy FM, in Paris on Thursday called for France to also ignore the code.“The decision to label products precisely at this time gives a tail wind to terror,” she said, The Jerusalem Post, an Israeli daily, reports.EU diplomats say the US gave tacit approval to the labels due to Israel’s settlement expansion. But a bipartisan group of congressmen on Thursday introduced a resolution saying the labels "encourage and prompt consumers to boycott all Israeli goods. This is counter-productive to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, [and] harmful to US national security interests.”Israeli settlers export between €100 million and €300 million a year of products to the EU, less than one percent of overall trade.More than half a million of them live on Palestinian land, which Israel conquered in the 1967 war.

DRUG PUSHERS AND ADDICTS

1 PET 5:8
8 Be sober,(NOT DRUGED UP OR ALCOHOLICED) be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

REVELATION 18:23
23 And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries (DRUGS) were all nations deceived.

REVELATION 9:21
21 Neither repented they of their murders,(KILLING) nor of their sorceries (DRUG ADDICTS AND DRUG PUSHERS), nor of their fornication,(SEX OUTSIDE MARRIAGE OR PROSTITUTION FOR MONEY) nor of their thefts.(STEALING)

LETS SEE-BUSH IS CALLING TRUMP A FAKE CANDIDATE FOR PRESIDENT.TRUMP IS CALLING JEBBY BUSH.AN EMBARRASMENT TO THE BUSH NAME WHO WILL NOT EVEN USE HIS LAST NAME. AND DUMB AS A ROCK.HITLER-2ND CLINTON SAID TRUMP IS A RACIST-HATER-BIGOT FOR WANTING TO BAN THE SEX FOR MURDER DEATH CULT ISLAMIST MUSLIMS FROM AMERICA TEMPORARILY. I NEVER HEARD WHAT TRUMP SAID ABOUT HITLER-2ND CLINTON LAST NIGHT-AFTER SHE CALLED TRUMP A HATER.THERES A FEW CHOICE WORDS I WOULD LIKE TO SAY ABOUT OUR LOONIE LIBERAL LEADERS JUSTIN-(THERE ISN'T A MOSQUE I WOULD NOT WORSHIP AT OR AN ABORTION CLINIC I WOULD NOT WORSHIP IN WERE BABIES ARE MURDERED BY ABORTION)-TRUDEAU. AND LIBERAL ONTARIO LEADER LESBIEN KATHLEEN WYNN WOULD GLADLY FOLLOW TRUDEAU INTO THE MOSQUE AND ABORTION CLINICS.AND BOTH WANT CANADA TO KILL OUR PARENTS OFF THREW DOCTORS AND NURSES LEGALLY KILLING OUR PARENTS AND FAMILIES OFF. THE TWO ALSO WANT MARIJUANA LEGALISED AND TAXED SO WOMEN CAN GET ADDICTED TO THE DRUG. THEN THE LIBERALS WANT PROSTITUTION LEGALIZED AND TAXED-SO AFTER THE WOMEN GET ADDICTED TO DRUGS. THEY THEN PROSTITUTE THEMSELVES TO PAY FOR THEIR DRUG ADDICTION HABIT. MEANWHILE THE LIBERALS ARE GLAD BECAUSE THEY GET ALL THE TAXES FROM THE DRUGS AND PROSTITUTION.ARE THE LIBERALS NOT JUST THE GREATEST SCHEMERS GOING-TO GET TAX MONEY. NEXT BEASTIALITY WILL BE LEGALIZED BY THE LIBERAL LOONIE-TOONIES.AND THEN THE LIBERALS WILL HAVE ANIMAL BROTHELS SO THE ANIMALS CAN BE PROSTITUTED OUT FOR THE TAX MONEY.ARE THESE LIBERALS NOT JUST THE GREATEST MORALISTS GOING-NEXT TO THE DEATH CULT ISLAM OF COURSE.ACTUALLY THE LIBERAL-DEMOCRATES AND ISLAM ARE THE SAME. OH NO-I KNOW WHAT THE MEDIA WILL SAY FOR MY COMMENT THEIR. OH STAN IS PROMOTING PEOPLE TO JOIN ISIS MURDERERS FOR SAYING ISLAM AND THE LIBERAL-DEMOCRATES ARE BOTH THE SAME MIND SET.

AND A JOKE HITLER-Y-2ND CLINTON IS SO OLD-SHE MAKES THE ORIGINAL ROMAN EMPIRE LOOK LIKE A TEENY BOPPER.AND HITLARY CLINTON AND KATHLEEN WYNN SHOULD MARRY AND LIVE ON THE BORDER TO ALLOW ALL THE MUSLIMS INTO AMERICA AND CANADA.SINCE THEY BOTH SUCK UP TO ISLAM.

Wynne wants clear regulations on medical and recreational marijuana-[The Canadian Press]-Keith Leslie, The Canadian Press-December 20, 2015-yahoonews

TORONTO - Ontario is looking for federal government guidance on regulating clinics that sell medical marijuana and on how pot should be sold for recreational use once it's legalized.The federal Liberals promised in this month's throne speech to "legalize, regulate and restrict access to marijuana" to keep it out of the hands of children while also denying criminals the financial profits.The new government plans to remove possession of small amounts of marijuana from the Criminal Code and create new laws to more severely punish those who provide it to minors or drive while under its influence.Premier Kathleen Wynne says there hasn't been enough discussion about the distinctions between medicinal and recreational marijuana, which is one reason she suggested Ontario's government-run liquor stores would be well-suited to retailing legalized pot."The reason I put forward the LCBO as the possible distribution network is that I want to make it clear that I see the need for a socially responsible approach to this," Wynne told The Canadian Press in a year-end interview."I think that this needs to be a controlled substance — and I don't use that in a technical way — but there need to be controls on it, and so I will be looking to the federal government to work with us to determine what those controls need to be."There are dozens of clinics or dispensaries springing up in cities across Canada that sell medicinal marijuana — mainly in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia — and there are referral-only clinics staffed with doctors who assess patients but don't sell pot. They give patients a prescription to take to a licensed marijuana producer.Canada needs national standards and regulations for the marijuana clinics, said Wynne."Not all marijuana is going to be medicinal, so we've got to make distinctions between a clinic that is providing medicinal marijuana and what the recreational distribution is going to be," she said. "I just don't think we're there yet."Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to create a task force with representatives from the three levels of government and, with input from experts in public health, substance abuse and policing, to help design a new system of marijuana sales and distribution.Trudeau stressed the importance of listening to municipal partners, provinces and the medical marijuana industry, as well as drawing on best practices from around the world."We are going to get this right in a way that suits Canadians broadly, and specifically in their communities.''Trudeau also said any tax revenues from legal marijuana should go towards addiction treatment, mental health support and education programs — not general revenues."It was never about a money-maker," he said.Wynne isn't the only one looking for a socially responsible way to retail marijuana.The British Columbia Government and Service Employees' Union and the B.C. Private Liquor Store Association joined forces to call for legal marijuana to be sold through their existing retail system, which includes about 200 private and 200 government-run stores.BCGEU president Stephanie Smith said the union did not take a position on whether it supports the plan to legalize marijuana, "but we do believe that when this happens, it ought to be sold in the most socially responsible way possible, in an age-controlled environment with the strongest track record of checking identification."Expectations are changing fast in Ontario, which only last week updated its liquor laws to allow the sale of six-packs of beer in selected grocery stores. Minutes after Wynne made the announcement, she was asked why grocers couldn't also sell pot."I don't know what the federal government is going to bring forward, but we will work with them to make sure there are parameters of social responsibility around marijuana."Ontario had to back off plans to ban the use of electronic cigarettes and vaping everywhere that smoking tobacco is prohibited, which it planned to implement Jan. 1, after medical marijuana users noted they would be exempted from the regulation."We know that we're going need to bring in regulation and possibly legislation to make sure that all the rules that apply to smoking cigarettes, tobacco, will apply to smoking marijuana, whether it's medicinal or otherwise," said Wynne.Follow @CPnewsboy on Twitter

New York drug bust nets 136 pounds of cocaine worth estimated $3 million-Reuters By Karen Brooks-December 19, 2015 1:36 PM-YAHOONEWS

(Reuters) - Two men were arrested and nearly $3 million worth of cocaine was seized in New York City in what is being described as the biggest bust involving the drug in recent years as heroin abuse has surged, law enforcement authorities said on Saturday.Mark Soto and Xavier Herbert-Gumbs, face felony drug possession charges after authorities said they found a total of 136 pounds (61.7 kg) of cocaine in their vehicles in the Bronx, according to a statement by the Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor in New York."This is the largest cocaine seizure that our office has made in recent years," said Kati Cornell, spokeswoman for the prosecutor. "Recently, we've seen a lot more large seizures of heroin, so this case is certainly unusual."Her office did not have information available as to when or how large the last major cocaine bust in New York was recorded. New York City police did not immediately return calls seeking comment.According to the prosecutor's statement, the men had transported the drugs from Massachusetts as part of a "major narcotics trafficking network" identified in an investigation by local law enforcement and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.The statement did not explain the basis on which authorities estimated the value of the seizure at $3 million.The men are charged with four counts each of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the first and third degrees. Bail was set for each defendant at $400,000.On Thursday, police pulled over a vehicle in which Herbert-Gumbs, of Rio Grande, Puerto Rico, was the passenger and found 110 pounds of cocaine pressed into bricks bearing brand names, the statement said.A short time later, officers found Soto, of San Juan, Puerto Rico, exiting a vehicle at an intersection, but were able to detain him and search the vehicle's trunk, which was holding another 26 pounds of cocaine, the statement said.The investigation also involved the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's New York Division, the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor and the U.S. Coast Guard Investigative Service. In November, the U.S. Coast Guard and federal authorities announced a $748 million cocaine seizure after an investigation in the Eastern Pacific in what was called the most successful counternarcotics operation in the region since 2009.(Reporting by Karen Brooks in Dallas; editing by Frank McGurty and G Crosse)

Trudeau looking beyond Security Council at UN, as many countries vie for seats-[The Canadian Press]-Mike Blanchfield, The Canadian Press-December 20, 2015-yahoonews

OTTAWA - Justin Trudeau may want to bring Canada back to the world as an international player but the prime minister will likely have to win another election before the country returns to one of the globe's most powerful tables.Trudeau all but ruled out a return for Canada to the powerful United Nations Security Council any time before 2019 during a roundtable interview with The Canadian Press this past week. Canada's historic loss of a seat on the council in 2010 to tiny Portugal has been often cited as one of the major foreign policy failings of the previous Conservative government, which at times viewed the UN with disdain.Trudeau has made Canada's reengagement with the UN and other global multilateral organizations a core aspect of his foreign policy.Trudeau acknowledged what senior bureaucrats told his new government after it won power in October: that it is unlikely Canada would be in a position to vie for a temporary two-year seat until sometime early in the next decade.That's because other western European countries in the UN group to which Canada belongs have declared their intentions to run, effectively filling up the ballot up to 2020 and beyond."Yes, getting back onto the Security Council would be nice. And we're obviously aware of challenges around timing on that," Trudeau said."But it's not the only way that one can make a difference in the UN. There is a need for Canada to engage across a broad range of issues, and that's exactly what we're going to do."Trudeau cited a renewed commitment to peacekeeping and climate change as two areas where Canada can work within the UN to be a constructive player.He also said Canada has many avenues to pursue engagement with the permanent members of the council, including China and "even Russia if we wanted to."The Security Council has faced heavy criticism in recent years because it has been powerless to stop the civil war that has killed 300,000 people in Syria since 2011 because Russia — one of the five permanent, veto-wielding members — has consistently blocked concrete action against a country it considers an ally.But on Friday, the council displayed rare unanimity when it endorsed a roadmap for a negotiated peace in Syria that involves government and opposition groups. Michael Grant, Canada's current UN ambassador, said the Friday agreement was encouraging.But in a separate interview with The Canadian Press, he acknowledged that Canada's return to the Security Council is still many years off."If you look at those countries that have declared going forward, it does limit the opportunities. But we've served on it several times in the past, and we look forward to serving on it again," he said.Canada last served on the council in 1999-2000, its sixth term, dating back to the late 1940s. Ordinarily, said Grant, the campaigning for the next seat would have started after its most recently completed term.But the Conservatives abandoned all campaigning for the council after the 2010 loss.Like Trudeau, Grant said Canada has renewed its engagement in other UN forums. Canada recently joined a working group on international aboriginal issues, and will do more to support UN peacekeeping efforts — another foreign policy priority of Trudeau's.Canada's contribution to UN missions has dropped off dramatically to a few dozen actual boots on the ground compared with thousands of troops in the 1990s. Grant said Canada remains the ninth largest contributor to peace operations.Its future contributions of personnel would be mainly specialized military experts, not massive deployments of troops, he said.Trudeau said he expects developing countries to continue to provide "the infantry troops, the basic bodies" of large peace keeping missions, but his goal is for Canada to add value."Canada actually has specific skills that many of the countries that are doing peacekeeping don't necessarily have, whether it's engineer corps, whether it's medical, whether it's officers and bilingualism or even French speaking," said Trudeau.Grant said Trudeau has sent clear foreign policy signals.But challenges clearly remain.Trudeau promised during the federal campaign that Canada would sign the UN Arms Trade Treaty. All of Canada's NATO allies, including the U.S. have signed on to the treaty that went into force in December 2014.That means Canada has now missed its opportunity to simply join the treaty. Now Canada must essentially apply to join, only after undertaking a legislative or regulatory review to ensure there are no roadblocks in our domestic law, said Grant."Our colleagues in Ottawa are looking at it," said Grant. "It will take a little bit of time."Meanwhile, Grant is getting lots of positive feedback from fellow UN ambassadors about Canada's future, particularly Trudeau's decision to appoint an equal number of men and women to cabinet."This has resonated throughout the UN system, and I think that's a very positive message that's being sent," Grant said. "Gender and equality has really been top of mind for everyone in the UN system."

Finance Minister Bill Morneau may have enough provincial support to boost CPP-[CBC]-December 20, 2015-yahoonews

As the federal, provincial, and territorial finance ministers gather in Ottawa for a meeting today and tomorrow there will be some new faces around the table.Eight of the 14 have been appointed to their portfolios since the finance ministers last held a meeting.More importantly, three key players are not only new — but are from different political parties than their predecessors and seem to hold different views on key issues — especially when it comes to enriching the Canada Pension Plan.Alberta, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, and the federal government all switched hands in the last year, moving from conservative parties to liberal ones (if not by party name, than by ideology).With that has come a change in the dynamics around the table. Alberta, once among the staunchest opponents of CPP enhancement, is now pushing for it.-Change in the air-Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci said ahead of his government's first budget last October that he was open to "responsible, phased-in, enhancements to the CPP."New Brunswick's new finance minister is also decidedly more supportive of the idea than his predecessor. In a statement released ahead of Sunday and Monday's meetings, Roger Melanson said he is "supportive of further work on potential options to enhance the Canada Pension Plan.""But," he continues in the statement, "we must recognize the state of the economy as part of these discussions."Currently, the CPP is structured such that contributions are mandatory and deducted from employees' pay at a rate of 4.95 per cent of earnings up to $50,600 in 2015 — after the personal exemption is applied.On top of that, employers must match the contributions of each of their employees dollar for dollar, which is where a number of concerns arise."We can't tax our way to prosperity, we can't tax our way to income security in our retirement years," said Kevin Doherty, Saskatchewan's finance minister, in an interview with CBC News ahead of the meetings.In the wake of the financial crisis, a number of Canadian governments argued the economy needed time to recover and strengthen before making any changes that would mean more expense for businesses and less money for consumers to spend now.-Economic ripples-With the oil-shock still rippling through the economy, Doherty said now still isn't the time to move on the issue. In the meantime, he said, there are plenty of other savings options on the table — including RRSPs, tax-free savings accounts, and the newly created pooled registered pension plans some national insurance companies will be offering."We think these kinds of tools should have an opportunity to work in the marketplace before we look at another mandatory payroll tax on the business community," he said.British Columbia may be the only other provincial government left with clear objections to moving on this issue, and it also cites the state of the economy.The federal government has said in the past it needed at least seven provinces representing at least half of the population of the country onside to move ahead.Although critical mass seems to be in hand, it doesn't mean the measure will move forward quickly. Most provinces have priorities of their own at the moment.The finance ministers are to get a private briefing from Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz — who is expected to provide a clearer picture as to where the central bank seeks the national economy headed — which obviously affects provincial economies and coffers.The Liberal government has also promised $125 billion in infrastructure spending — projects that will ultimately involve the provinces in terms of financing, but also job creation and possibly legacy projects.It is details of this and promised increases to health-care transfers that most of the provinces consider to be more urgent than pension reform.

Finance ministers meet in Ottawa to confront Canada's new economic reality-[The Canadian Press]-Andy Blatchford, The Canadian Press-December 20, 2015-YAHOONEWS

OTTAWA - Provincial and territorial finance ministers are scheduled to gather tonight in Ottawa with federal counterpart Bill Morneau to begin confronting the hard economic truths facing Canada and the new Liberal government.Several regional ministers have indicated they hope to leave the meetings, which wrap up Monday, with a better understanding of the government's election promises, which touch on a broad range of issues likely to impact the provinces.The federal Finance Department has laid out some of the subjects expected to be on the agenda, including Liberal promises of public-pension reform, infrastructure spending and a revamped child-benefit plan.But with the country's economy struggling to rebound from the negative effects of low commodity prices, there's an overarching theme Morneau says he would like to focus on."The main subject I'd like to talk about is growth," he said recently when asked about the meeting."We will be spending time talking about infrastructure and how we can best make infrastructure investments together with the provinces. And as I said, we're going to talk about Canada Pension Plan enhancement and how we might be able to work together in that regard."In a recent statement, the Finance Department called the federal and provincial governments joint stewards of the CPP. It said major changes to the plan would need support from Ottawa as well as seven of the 10 provinces representing at least two-thirds of the country's population. The Liberals also pledged to provide billions of dollars worth of funding for the provinces, territories and municipalities for infrastructure projects such as public transit. The party argues that such investments are crucial to firing up Canada's weakened economy and to creating jobs.While it may not appear on the official agenda, Morneau is expected to field questions from the other ministers about health care and the need to figure out how to grapple with its mounting costs.When asked about the Liberals' promises on health, Morneau said federal Health Minister Jane Philpott would take the lead on discussing those issues with her provincial counterparts.The Liberals have promised to negotiate a new federal-provincial health-care accord and provide a fresh commitment for long-term funding — a crucial concern of finance ministers since it swallows such a large portion of their budgets.Their Conservative predecessors allowed the previous health accord to expire. It was a 10-year, $41-billion deal signed in 2004 under then-prime minister Paul Martin which guaranteed federal health transfer payments would increase annually by six per cent.The Tories decided unilaterally in 2011 that the Canada Health Transfer would grow by six per cent a year until 2017-18. After that, health transfers will be tied to the rate of economic growth and inflation, but the annual rate of increase won't fall below three per cent.Another provincial minister has said he expects discussion on the planned national co-operative securities regulator and the possible impacts of the Trans-Pacific Partnership treaty.Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz is also scheduled to give a presentation to the group on the country's monetary policy and the state of the world economy.The ministers are scheduled to hold a news conference Monday afternoon once the meetings wrap up.Follow @AndyBlatchford on Twitter

More colleges seek exemption from LGBT anti-bias rules, rights group says-Reuters By Fiona Ortiz-December 19, 2015 10:33 AM-YAHOONEWS

CHICAGO (Reuters) - A growing number of U.S. universities are seeking religious exemptions from civil rights laws barring discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students, according to a report by LGBT advocacy group Human Rights Campaign.The group called on the Department of Education to make the exemption process more public so that students could know they might suffer discrimination at schools they choose to attend.Colleges controlled by religious groups are allowed to ask for exemption from Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which bans sex discrimination for programs that get federal funds, but more recently has been used to protect gay and transgender students from discrimination.Human Rights Campaign said 43 schools sought the exemption in 2015, up from a single school in 2013. Of 56 requests for exemptions in total, 33 schools are now allowed to discriminate on the basis of gender identity and 23 schools on the basis of sexual orientation, the group said. It said the exemptions allow colleges to discriminate in areas such as admissions, sports programs, housing and financial aid.The Department of Education did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Saturday.The Office for Civil Rights of the Department of Education has granted the exemptions to schools that operate under statements of faith and religious tenets stating that marriage is between one man and one woman, and that gender is assigned by God, according to official letters copied in the group's report, which was published on Friday.According to the report, schools such as George Fox University, California Baptist University, Grace University and Pepperdine University have used waivers to refuse to house transgender students in dorms of their gender identity, to expel gay students, to demand lesbian students return aid money, and to refuse to acknowledge transgender students' gender identity.The group called for a more public process, saying the department should publish a yearly report on colleges that seek exemptions and oblige schools to inform students about the waivers."If this trend continues, many LGBT students may find themselves enrolled at schools that are granted the legal right to discriminate against them partway through their degree program," the group said.(Editing by Frank McGurty and Digby Lidstone)

Preliminary results: Slovenians reject same-sex marriage law-Associated Press By ALI ZERDIN- DEC 20,15-YAHOONEWS

LJUBLJANA, Slovenia (AP) — Slovenians rejected same-sex marriage by a large margin in a referendum on Sunday, according to near-complete results, in a victory for the conservatives backed by the Catholic Church in the ex-communist EU nation.The results released by authorities show 63.5 percent voted against a bill that defines marriage as a union of two adults, while 36.5 percent were in favor.Slovenia's left-leaning Parliament introduced marriage equality in March, but opponents pushed through a popular vote on the issue. The "Children Are At Stake" group has collected 40,000 signatures to challenge the changes before any gay couples were able to marry."This result presents a victory for our children," said Ales Primc, the group's leader.Ljudmila Novak, from New Slovenia, described the outcome as a "clear defeat" of the leftist government, which backed the changes.Supporters of same-sex marriage have called for Slovenia to join Western European nations that have allowed more gay rights. Conservatives and the right-wing opposition have campaigned on traditional family values, arguing that marriage equality paves the way for gay and lesbian couples to adopt children.Although Slovenia is considered to be among the most liberal of the ex-communist nations, gay rights remain a contentious topic in the predominantly Roman Catholic nation of 2 million.Voters in the former Yugoslav republic rejected granting more rights to gay couples in a referendum in 2012.Violeta Tomic, a lawmaker from the United Left party which initially put forward the bill, said referendum results presented a temporary setback only."It's not over yet. Sooner or later the law will be accepted," she said.The Slovenia vote illustrates a cultural split within the European Union in which more established western members are rapidly granting new rights to gays, while eastern newcomers entrench conservative attitudes toward the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.Igor Zagar, a 55-year- old professor from the capital, Ljubljana, said he voted in favor of marriage equality to "support the secular state and against the interference of the church into political issues."Gregor Jerovsek, a 40-year-old mechanic from Ljubljana, said he believed that "the family should not be a field for experimentation.""A traditional family should remain the key value of our society," he said.

How long does 'real change' last? 5 Liberal changes that are likely to stick-[CBC]-December 20, 2015-yahoonews

Every new government comes in promising change, which often means reversing the policies of the previous government.Justin Trudeau's Liberals are no different, pledging to undo much of what the Conservative government did over the past decade, as well as enacting new polices of its own.Stephen Harper was no different, cutting the GST two points, cancelling the Liberals' long-gun registry and disbanding the decades- old Canadian Wheat Board over the course of his nearly 10 years in power.Those changes look likely to endure. The Liberals show no inclination to reverse the first two and the sale of the wheat board makes its reinstatement moot.But some changes are not so long-lasting. For example, specific tax credits, child-care supports and decisions about contracts for military equipment seem to be reversed and then reversed again with every change in government.The Liberals promised "real change" on the campaign trail and have moved swiftly on many fronts. How many of their promised changes are likely to endure beyond their rule, and not simply be reversed by a future government of a different stripe? Here's a look at five issues that dominated political debate for years — but may fade away as wedge issues.-1. Face coverings at citizenship ceremonies-The so-called niqab ban was a hot-button issue during the election even though it affected a very small minority of people. In instituting a policy against face coverings such as the one worn by some Muslim women, the Conservatives argued everyone should show their faces when "joining the Canadian family."Zunera Ishaq took Ottawa to court and won. The Conservatives appealed and lost again and then promised to go the Supreme Court, but the Liberals have officially abandoned the case."Would the Conservatives campaign to reinstate their legal challenge? I kind of doubt it," says Bruce Anderson, chairman of polling and market research firm Abacus Data.Conservative strategist Tim Powers of Summa Strategies is unequivocal, saying no Conservative will "touch it with a 10-foot pole" again. "Wedge politics will take other forms in the future, but this one was a miserable failure," he says, adding the idea floated during the campaign of a "barbaric cultural practices hotline" is also dead.2. Long-form census-The Liberals are reinstating the long-form census, which the Conservative government cancelled five years ago, citing privacy concerns. The cancellation was widely criticized by researchers, analysts and planners who rely on detailed data for their work. The opposition Liberals and NDP also cried foul."The Conservatives' argument against it was thin," says Anderson.Powers adds that new technology will likely make data collection naturally evolve away from conventional census-taking in the future anyway. But even so, the Conservatives "are not going to go back and fight that battle again."In fact, Tony Clement, the former Conservative minister who oversaw and defended the cancellation, now says in hindsight, "I think I would have done it differently."-3. Refugee health-care benefits-The new Liberal government has made health benefits available to Syrian refugees arriving each week, and it promises to reinstate the benefits for all refugees soon.-In 2012, the Conservatives made cuts to the interim federal health program, which had the effect of denying some health benefits to some refugee claimants. At the time, the Liberals and NDP denounced the changes.Refugee advocates and doctors' groups took legal action and won when a federal judge called the effects of the changes "cruel and unusual" and therefore unconstitutional. But the Conservative government appealed the ruling. The Liberals have abandoned that appeal.Once the program is fully back, it's likely to stay. "Nothing is impossible to change (back), but this would fall into the 'hard to change' category," says Anderson.That's because it would likely mean more court battles and use up valuable political capital for very little gain, says another political watcher, speaking on background.Powers adds that, due to Canada's aging population and the need for young workers that our birth rate is not providing, a more open-door policy towards refugees might be lasting as well. "Higher levels of refugees coming in and a greater openness to a broader class of refugees," is likely.-4. Retirement benefits-During the the election campaign, the Liberals and NDP committed to restoring the age of eligibility for Old Age Security to 65 from 67. The Conservative government had raised it to 67 in the 2012 budget (with a phase-in period starting in 2023), arguing that an aging population meant it would not be financially viable to keep it at 65.Powers says keeping it at 65 would depend on the nation's finances and how challenging the demographics turn out to be.But, campaigning on those kind of changes can be difficult, as then prime minister Brian Mulroney found in the 1980s when he was forced to back down on the de-indexing of pensions in the face of a seniors' backlash.-5. Legalizing marijuana-The Liberal promise to "legalize, regulate and restrict" the recreational use of marijuana won't be an easy task and will be fraught with challenges, but experts expect this to be a matter of when and not if. And once in place, the changes could be hard to undo.Anderson argues "unless the new system results in chaos and reefer madness, where whole segments of the Canadian population become indolent" due to pot use, marijuana is not likely to become recriminalized, as there is not a great deal of upside in doing that. "Public opinion has clearly moved in this direction," says Anderson."The Conservatives will likely let this one go," Powers agrees. "There's no stopping this. These will be seen as legitimate changes not unlike what was done with alcohol in the past."

Sun, Dec 20, 2015, 5:47 PM EST-TRUMP: Hillary Clinton 'made up' claims that ISIS is using videos of me to recruit terrorists-Business Insider By Maxwell Tani-YAHOONEWS

Real-estate tycoon Donald Trump said former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton lied about a peculiar claim during Saturday night's Democratic debate: that ISIS is showing recruits videos of Trump's statements about Muslims.In an interview with ABC's George Stephanopoulos on Sunday, Trump said Clinton "made up" claims that the terrorist group, also known as the Islamic State and ISIL, is using Trump's words in videos to lure new recruits."There's no such video. Knowing the Clintons and knowing Hillary, she made it up," Trump said. Hillary Clinton lied when she said that "ISIS is using video of Donald Trump as a recruiting tool." This was fact checked by @FoxNews: FALSE-— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 20, 2015 -Clinton's comments came after she was asked to respond to Trump's proposed ban on Muslims entering the US."We have to make sure the really discriminatory messages Donald Trump is sending around the world do not fall on receptive ears," Clinton said."He is becoming ISIS’ best recruiter," she charged. "They are going to people showing videos of Donald Trump insulting Islam and Muslims in order to recruit more radical jihadists."The Clinton campaign has since backpedaled slightly on its candidate's comments.When asked what Clinton was referring to Saturday night, campaign spokesman Jesse Ferguson pointed Business Insider to a comment from Rita Katz, an expert on ISIS propaganda and co-founder of the SITE Intelligence group. Katz has said that ISIS follows "everything Donald Trump says" and points to Trump's proposed Muslim ban as proof that America hates Muslims.Clinton's campaign also sent Business Insider a tweet from an alleged ISIS sympathizer's account that commented on Trump's refusal to rule out the potential creation of registry for Muslim-Americans.On Sunday, Katz took to Twitter to clarify her comments: #ISIS didn't feature #Trump in a video, but ISIS supporters/recruiters have used Trump’s rhetoric to promote ISIS’ ideas & agenda #Hillary— Rita Katz (@Rita_Katz) December 20, 2015 -Clinton campaign communications director Jen Palmieri told Stephanopoulos on Sunday that Clinton "didn't have a particular video in mind" when she made the comment. But she said Trump is being used by ISIS in social-media propaganda.

KNOWLEGE INCREASED AND WORLD TRAVEL (IMMIGRATION) INCREASED

DANIEL 12:4
4 But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro,(WORLD TRAVEL,IMMIGRATION FROM FLEEING WARS) and knowledge shall be increased.(COMPUTERS MICROCHIPS ETC)

Social media playing key role as Syrian refugees arrive in Canada-[The Canadian Press]-Aly Thomson, The Canadian Press-December 20, 2015-yahoonews

HALIFAX - Val Macdonald says it only took a few minutes before a little red notification popped up on her Facebook page after posting about donations for a Syrian refugee family.The privately-sponsored refugees arrived in British Columbia's Comox Valley in October, but they needed some essential items.Macdonald, who helps run the Syrian Refugee Support Committee Facebook page, said she posted about the family of four needing diapers and within days, they had enough diapers to last three months.She said many donations, everything from winter boots to AppleTV, have come from complete strangers in their community of roughly 63,000 people. Social media also bolstered their efforts to raise about $40,000, she said."Social media allows you to connect with people quickly," said Macdonald, who has worked in the immigration sector for more than 25 years. "It's creating a whole new ball game."Giles Crouch, managing partner at Thistlewood digital research firm in Halifax, says social media is playing a key role in community organizing as 25,000 refugees arrive in Canada over the next few months."It allows for coordination that we've never had before," said Crouch in a recent interview."It's a much faster way to organize, to have consistent messaging amongst groups and to share on a national and international basis. It's almost zero cost and makes it very easy to coordinate. Without social media, just think, you'd have to be mailing out letters, making phone calls and sending faxes."Even the federal government is using social media to mobilize. The Immigration Department has been encouraging people to use the hashtag #WelcomeRefugees.Peter Goodspeed, a spokesman for the Toronto-based Lifeline Syria, said their 370 sponsorship groups are forming and devising plans through social media."Social media is allowing us to organize in a way that we've never been able to before," said Goodspeed, whose organization assists refugee sponsorship groups in the Toronto area. "It's playing a big role."Crouch also said a majority of Canadians who have posted comments on social media about Syrian refugees are supportive of their arrival in Canada.Crouch said based on his company's analysis —which included a sample of Twitter feeds, public Facebook posts and blog posts — more than 70 per cent of those who have posted comments online have expressed supportive sentiments about Syrian refugees coming to Canada.Crouch said memes are also playing a massive role in the online conversation about refugees. He said memes, images or videos that often contain humorous phrases, help shape public opinion."Memes communicate a complex message often very quickly," said Crouch, adding that memes about Syrian refugees have been mostly positive."If someone distills a message down into a few sentences, or a few words, because these media are highly visual, it enables them to get out there more so than just the words."Follow (at)AlyThomson on Twitter.

14 Syrian refugees arrive to applause, singing in Saskatoon-[cbc.ca]-cbc.ca-December 20, 2015-yahoonews

Despite arriving fatigued and uncertain about a return home, 14 new refugees from Syria stepped into John G. Diefenbaker International Airport in Saskatoon late Saturday night, thankful for the support, gifts, applause and songs from the strangers awaiting their arrival.Among the 14 were mothers, fathers, infants and young children, all of whom smiled, and hugged and kissed the waiting supporters as they met for the first time.Rashid Ahmed was one such supporter waiting for the newcomers to emerge. He and about 60 other people formed a dense semi-circle around the arrival doors where the exhausted travellers would emerge from.Along with his friend and his mom, Ahmed sang an Arabic song welcoming the Syrians."It's actually the song when our prophet Muhammad moved to Medina [from Mecca], the people welcomed him with the same song," said Ahmed's friend, Hibatullah Hibatullah. "It's basically about welcoming people."For Ahmed, a refugee from Pakistan, it's deeply personal. He and his mother were granted refugee status in Canada after they were persecuted in Pakistan because they are Ahmadiyya Muslims."We know their hardship and their feeling," Ahmed said, through his tears. "I know the feeling of refugees because my family was persecuted, and they are in a dangerous situation right now too."Ahmed's mother made a point of hugging and kissing the women in the group of newcomers. She arrived in Canada only eight months ago.There were several politicians who awaited the refugees' arrival, including Saskatoon MLA Don Morgan. Morgan said he doesn't know the exact date, but expects more refugees to arrive within the next few days.

The Latest: Air France CEO: Device that caused plane to divert to Kenya was a fake bomb-[The Canadian Press]-The Associated Press-December 20, 2015-yahoonews

NAIROBI, Kenya - The latest developments on an Air France flight from Mauritius to Paris that was diverted to Kenya after a suspected bomb was found on it.-5:50 p.m.The CEO of Air France says a device discovered in the bathroom of an Air France flight was a fake bomb.The Boeing 777 was heading to Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris from Mauritius when its pilots requested an emergency landing at early Sunday in the Kenyan city of Mombasa.Frederic Gagey, the head of the airline, said the device was made of card board, paper and a household timer. In a news conference in Paris, Gagey congratulated the crew for their cool-headed reaction to divert the plane.He says "this object did not contain explosives."Gagey says a safety check was carried out in the bathroom before the flight. He says passengers are checked, and sometimes double-checked on flights, and denied any security failure in the flight Sunday.___4:55 p.m.The Kenya Airports Authority has edited its announcement on Facebook regarding an explosive device aboard Air France Flight 463, which was diverted while en route to Paris.The authority now says the Air France Boeing 777 made an emergency landing in Mombasa due to "a suspicious object." Earlier Sunday, the post said security forces had foiled "a bombing attempt."The updated Facebook post indicated questions about whether the device, described by a security official as a box with a timer on top, was some kind of hoax. France has been under a state of emergency since the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris that left 130 people dead and hundreds wounded. The attacks were claimed by Islamic State militants.___3:30 p.m.A Kenyan police official says no explosives have been found yet in a suspicious device left on an Air France flight that caused the plane to be diverted to Mombasa, Kenya.The police official, who is part of the investigation and who insisted on anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the media, said during the flight to Paris a passenger noticed something in one of the plane's lavatories that looked like "a stopwatch mounted on a box."The passenger reported the suspicious device to the cabin crew and pilots requested an emergency landing.The police official said the box has been taken apart and no explosives have been found but the digital watch has not yet been analyzed.— by Tom Odula in Nairobi, Kenya-__3:15 p.m.A Kenyan police official says six passengers are being questioned over a suspected bomb found on an Air France plane that forced the jet flying to Paris from Mauritius to make an emergency landing in Kenya.The police official, who insisted on anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the media, said during the flight a passenger noticed something in a lavatory that looked like "a stopwatch mounted on a box."The passenger reported the device to the cabin crew, who informed the pilots, leading to an emergency landing at the airport in the Kenyan city of Mombasa.The official said one of those being interrogated is the man who reported the package.— by Tom Odula in Nairobi, Kenya__1:55 p.m.Flight 463 is Air France's third plane to be diverted in recent weeks.The plane flying from Mauritius to Paris was diverted early Sunday to the Kenyan city of Mombasa after a suspicious package was found. Bomb experts are examining it.Two other Air France flights from the U.S. to Paris were diverted on Nov. 18 after bomb threats were received but no bombs were found.France has been under a state of emergency since the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris that left 130 people dead and hundreds wounded.Islamic State extremists have claimed responsibility for the attacks in Paris as well as for the Oct. 31 crash of a Russian passenger plane in the Sinai desert that killed all 224 people aboard. Moscow says that crash was caused by a bomb on the plane and has demanded that Egypt increase security at all its airports.___1:05 p.m.Kenya's interior minister says several people who were on Air France Flight 463 are being questioned in Mombasa.Minister Joseph Nkaissery spoke at a news conference at the Mombasa airport, where the flight from Mauritius to Paris was diverted early Sunday at the request of its pilots. Authorities say a suspicious package was found in one of the plane's lavatories and experts in Mombasa were examining it.Air France says the plane was carrying 459 passengers and 14 crew members. Nkaissery did not say how many are being questioned or if they were passengers or crew.The minister said another Air France plane will pick up the passengers once the interrogations are done. He did not say how long that would take.___11:30 a.m.Air France says investigators are working to confirm whether the package found on Flight 463 contained explosives.The Boeing 777 was heading to Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris from Mauritius when its pilots requested an emergency landing at 12:37 a.m. Sunday in the Kenyan city of Mombasa.Kenyan authorities said the suspected device was found in one of the plane's lavatories.The Air France spokeswoman, who could not be named to discuss the ongoing investigation, said local authorities were also interviewing passengers. The airline has sent a substitute plane to pick up the passengers.___11:05 a.m.A passenger on Air France Flight 463 says everything was calm and passengers thought there was simply a technical problem as their flight to Paris was being diverted to the Kenyan city of Mombasa.Passenger Benoit Lucchini says "the plane just went down slowly, slowly, slowly. So we just realized probably something was wrong, but the personnel of Air France were just great. They were just wonderful. So they kept everybody calm. We did not know what was happening."He spoke to journalists in Mombasa after getting off the plane.Kenyan police say the flight from Mauritius was diverted after pilots requested an emergency landing at 12:37 a.m. on Sunday. The Kenyan Airports Authority says a suspected explosive device was found in the plane's lavatory.___10:15 a.m.The Kenya Airports Authority says what is "believed to be an explosive device has successfully been retrieved" from an Air France flight.Police say Air France Flight 463 was heading to Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris from Mauritius when the pilots requested an emergency landing at the Moi International Airport in the Kenyan coastal city of Mombasa at 12:37 a.m. Sunday.Police spokesman Charles Owino says the device was discovered in a lavatory of the Boeing 777. He says all of the plane's 459 passengers and 14 crew were safely evacuated and bomb experts are studying the device.The Airports Authority, in a Twitter post, says normal flight operations have resumed at Mombasa.

US says bombers didn't intend to fly over China-held island after Beijing files protests-[The Canadian Press]-Christopher Bodeen, The Associated Press-December 19, 2015-YAHOONEWS

BEIJING, China - The United States said its two B-52 bombers had no intention of flying over a Chinese-controlled man-made island in the South China Sea, after Beijing accused Washington of "a serious military provocation" in the strategic waters with overlapping claims.China's Defence Ministry on Saturday accused the U.S. of deliberately raising tensions in the region, where China has been aggressively asserting its claims to virtually all islands, reefs and their surrounding seas. It reiterated that it would do whatever is necessary to protect China's sovereignty.Pentagon spokesman Mark Wright said that the Dec. 10 mission was not a "freedom of navigation" operation and that there was "no intention of flying within 12 nautical miles of any feature," indicating the mission may have strayed off course.The U.S. uses pre-planned freedom of navigation operations to assert its rights to "innocent passage" in other country's territorial waters."The United States routinely conducts B-52 training missions throughout the region, including over the South China Sea," Wright said in an email to The Associated Press. "These missions are designed to maintain readiness and demonstrate our commitment to fly, sail and operate anywhere allowed under international law."Wright said the U.S. was "looking into the matter."The U.S. takes no official stance on sovereignty claims in the South China Sea, through which $5 trillion in international trade passes each year. However, Washington insists on freedom of navigation and maintains that China's seven newly created islands do not enjoy traditional rights, including a 12-nautical-mile (22-kilometre) territorial limit.China's Defence Ministry demanded that Washington immediately take measures to prevent such incidents and damage to relations between the two nations' militaries."The actions by the U.S. side constitute a serious military provocation and are rendering more complex and even militarizing conditions in the South China Sea," the ministry said in a statement.The statement said that Chinese military personnel on the island went on high alert during the overflights by the B-52 strategic bombers and that they issued warnings demanding the aircraft leave the area.As is China's usual practice, the Foreign Ministry took a more diplomatic tone, saying the situation was stable.Speaking to reporters on a visit to Berlin, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi drew a contrast between the situation in the South China Sea region and the chaos and turmoil in other parts of the world. "The situation in the South China Sea is essentially stable overall," he said.Wang also said that while China understands the concerns of nations from outside the region — a clear reference to the U.S. — they should "do more to benefit peace and stability and support efforts to find a resolution through talks, and not manufacture tensions or even fan the flames.""We don't think this is a constructive approach and will not receive the support and welcome of relevant nations," Wang said.The Foreign Ministry said it had "lodged solemn representation with the United States" over the incident.China's latest protest comes amid a simmering dispute over Washington's approval this past week of the first arms package in four years offered to Taiwan, Beijing's self-governing rival. Beijing, which regards Taiwan as part of its territory, demanded the deal be scrapped to avoid harming relations across the Taiwan Strait and between China and the U.S.Beijing filed a formal diplomatic complaint and its Foreign Ministry said it would take "necessary measures, including the imposition of sanctions against companies participating in the arms sale to Taiwan."The main contractor behind the weaponry is Raytheon. U.S. defence firms are forbidden to sell arms to China.___Associated Press writers Frank Jordans in Berlin and Lolita Baldor in Bahrain contributed to this report.

Northrop says U.S. Air Force picked right team for bomber contract-Reuters By Andrea Shalal-December 19, 2015 11:55 AM-YAHOONEWS

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Northrop Grumman Corp said on Saturday that it won a U.S. Air Force contract to build a new long-range bomber after a very thorough selection process and it argued that a new legal brief filed by Boeing Co had no merit.Boeing and Lockheed Martin Corp on Friday said they would continue their protest against the Northrop contract, which is worth about $80 billion, calling the Air Force's acquisition process "irreparably flawed".The losing bidders issued a joint statement saying that they had filed a 133-page brief with the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) in response to the Air Force's filing in the protest, which was first submitted last month.Northrop beat out the Boeing-Lockheed team to win the contract in October, but has had to stop working on the initial $21.4 billion development contract until GAO issues a ruling, which is due by Feb. 16.Northrop said it also filed comments with the GAO, supporting the Air Force's handling of the decision. The move came after the Air Force's response to the protest.No comment was immediately available from the Air Force."We are now even more confident that the Air Force followed an extraordinarily thorough and careful selection process and picked the right team in Northrop Grumman," Northrop spokesman Randy Belote said. He did not elaborate.He said Boeing's decision to file an additional brief with the GAO was "a routine step, particularly at this stage in a protest, and not in any way indicative of a meritorious protest."Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James last month said the Air Force followed a "very deliberate process" in awarding the contract to Northrop, and stood by its decision.Boeing and Lockheed could still decide to take their protest to federal court, as Lockheed did this week in its challenge to the Army's $6.75 billion contract award for next-generation Humvees to Oshkosh Corp.Lockheed said it took the step in that case after the GAO declined to extend its review to consider additional evidence, but GAO said the company did not submit the necessary supplemental protest requesting the extension.(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by David Clarke and Stephen Powell)

STORMS HURRICANES-TORNADOES

LUKE 21:25-26
25 And there shall be signs in the sun,(HEATING UP-SOLAR ECLIPSES) and in the moon,(MAN ON MOON-LUNAR ECLIPSES) and in the stars;(ASTEROIDS ETC) and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity;(MASS CONFUSION) the sea and the waves roaring;(FIERCE WINDS)
26 Men’s hearts failing them for fear,(TORNADOES,HURRICANES,STORMS) and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth:(DESTRUCTION) for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.(FROM QUAKES,NUKES ETC)

Calgary crashes keep emergency crews busy-[CBC]-December 19, 2015-yahoonews

The first real taste of winter driving is keeping emergency crews busy on this weekend.Between 6 a.m. and 1:40 p.m. on Saturday, police say there were 10 minor injury collisions and 91 non-injury collisions in Calgary, some involving multiple vehicles. Duty Inspector Michael Watterston says it's largely due to road conditions and "drivers not adjusting" to those conditions.Watterston urges drivers to plan their route, take their time and realize that especially in the morning, roads will be icy."It takes a little bit of time for road crews to get out there and sand and they're doing the best they can, but it does take time so people need to adjust," he said.



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