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Archive for April, 2012

(u.s. psy ops phasing out osama???)

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Proverbs 29:25 (NIV)
Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe…

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Weaker AL-Qaida still plots payback for US raid

news.yahoo.com

By KIMBERLY DOZIER | Associated Press – 30 April 2012

WASHINGTON (AP) — A year after the U.S. raid that killed Osama bin Laden, al-Qaida is hobbled and hunted, too busy surviving for the moment to carry out another Sept. 11-style attack on U.S. soil.

But the terrorist network dreams still of payback, and U.S. counterterrorist officials warn that, in time, its offshoots may deliver.

A decade of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that has cost the U.S. about $1.28 trillion and 6,300 U.S. troops’ lives has forced al-Qaida’s affiliates to regroup, from Yemen to Iraq. Bin Laden’s No. 2, Ayman al-Zawahri, is thought to be hiding, out of U.S. reach, in Pakistan’s mountains, just as bin Laden was for so many years.

“It’s wishful thinking to say al-Qaida is on the brink of defeat,” says Seth Jones, a Rand analyst and adviser to U.S. special operations forces. “They have increased global presence, the number of attacks by affiliates has risen, and in some places like Yemen, they’ve expanded control of territory.”

It’s a complicated, somewhat murky picture for Americans to grasp.

U.S. officials say bin Laden’s old team is all but dismantled. But they say new branches are hitting Western targets and U.S. allies overseas, and still aspire to match their parent organization’s milestone of Sept. 11, 2001.

The deadliest is in Yemen.

“They are continuing to try to again, carry out an attack against U.S. persons inside of Yemen, as well as against the homeland,” White House counterterrorism advisor John Brennan said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.”

“We’re working very closely with our Yemeni partners to track down all these leads,” he said.

Brennan says there’s no sign of an active revenge plot against U.S. targets, but U.S. citizens in Pakistan and beyond are being warned to be vigilant ahead of the May 2 anniversary of the night raid. U.S. helicopters swooped down on bin Laden’s compound in the Pakistani army town of Abbottabad, killing him, one of his sons, two couriers and their wives.

The last view for Americans of the mastermind behind the Sept. 11 attacks was that of a wizened old man sitting in front of an old television, wrapped in a blanket.

The world may never see photographic proof of his death. U.S. District Judge James E. Boasberg in Washington ruled last week that the Obama administration, under the Freedom of Information Act, would not have to turn over images of bin Laden during or after the raid.

“Verbal descriptions of the death and burial of Osama Bin Laden will have to suffice,” Boasberg wrote in his ruling on the lawsuit by the public interest group Judicial Watch.

Bin Laden’s killing and al-Qaida’s stumbling efforts to regroup are now the national security centerpiece of President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign.

The White House frequently cites the president’s decision to approve the raid, with only a 50-50 chance that bin Laden was even at the compound. Obama could have gone down in history as the man who put the Navy SEALs and the relationship with Pakistan in jeopardy, while failing to catch the al-Qaida leader.

“Al-Qaida was and is our No. 1 enemy,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said last week. “So it’s a part of his foreign policy record, obviously, but it’s also part of a very serious endeavor to keep our country safe.”

How safe remains in question.

U.S. officials say al-Qaida is less able to carry out a complex attack like Sept. 11 and they rule out al-Qaida’s ability to attack with weapons of mass destruction in the coming year. These officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they say publicly identifying themselves could make them a target of the terrorist group.

U.S. counterterrorist forces have killed roughly half of al-Qaida’s top 20 leaders since the raid. That includes U.S.-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, killed by a drone in Yemen last September, less than six months after bin Laden’s death.

Only a few of the original al-Qaida team remain, and most of the new names on the U.S. target lists are relative unknowns, officials say.

“The last terror attack (in the West) was seven years ago in London and they haven’t had any major attacks in the U.S.” says Peter Bergen, an al-Qaida expert who once met bin Laden. “They are recruiting no-hopers and dead-enders.”

Yet Zawahri is still out there. Though constantly hunted, he has managed to release 13 audio and video messages to followers since bin Laden’s death, a near record-rate of release according to the IntelCenter, a private intelligence firm. He has urged followers to seize on the unrest left by the Arab Spring to build organizations and influence in Egypt, Libya and elsewhere, and back rebels in Syria — a call that U.S. intelligence officials say is being heeded.

U.S. attempts to deliver a “knockout punch” to Zawahri and his followers in Pakistan have been hamstrung by a breakdown in relations with Pakistan’s government over the bin Laden raid.

Pakistani officials saw the raid as a violation of their sovereignty, made worse by a U.S. friendly fire attack that killed almost two dozen Pakistani troops on the border with Afghanistan last fall. Pakistan’s parliament called for a redrafting of what the U.S. is allowed to do, and where.

CIA drone strikes in Pakistan’s border area continue, but are limited to a relatively small area of the tribal region.

“Our efforts are focused on one small kill box and, we’ve hit them hard, but they still maintain a vital network throughout Pakistan” says Bill Roggio, editor of the Long War Journal, which tracks U.S. counterterrorism efforts worldwide.

Al-Qaida also takes shelter in Pakistan’s urban areas, as shown by the bin Laden raid, and the CIA’s efforts to search those areas is often blocked by the Pakistani intelligence service.

U.S. officials say they believe factions within the agency shelter and even fund al-Qaida’s senior leaders and related militant groups such as the Haqqani network, which attacks U.S. troops in Afghanistan, from their Pakistani safe haven. Pakistan denies the charge.

Afghanistan is the temporary home to up to 100 al-Qaida fighters at any single time, U.S. officials say, adding that a steady series of U.S. special operations raids is essential to keeping them out. With the withdrawal of U.S. forces, U.S. counterterrorism officials fear al-Qaida could return.

By the numbers, al-Qaida’s greatest presence is still greatest in Iraq, where intelligence officials estimate up to a 1,000 fighters have refocused their campaign from striking now-absent U.S. troops to hitting the country’s Shiite-dominated government.

Yemen’s al-Qaida of the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is becoming a major draw for foreign fighters as it carves out a stronghold in the south of the country, easily defeating Yemeni forces preoccupied battling tribal and political unrest. The White House recently agreed to expanded drone strikes to give the CIA and the military greater leeway to target militant leaders.

This al-Qaida group has been a major threat since 2009, when one of its adherents tried to bring down a jetliner over Detroit.

Al-Qaida affiliates such as al-Shabab in Somalia are struggling to carry out attacks in the face of a stepped up CIA-U.S. military campaign, and a loss of popular support after blocking U.N. food aid to some 4 million starving Somalis, officials say.

But the group is kept afloat by a stream of cash, partly from piracy and kidnapping of the Somali coast. Brennan, the White House counterterrorism chief, told an audience of CIA officers that total ransom payments paid to Somali pirates increased from approximately $80 million in 2010 to $140 million in 2011, according to remarks obtained by The Associated Press.

Cutting off those finances by persuading companies and U.S. to stop paying up is now central to the terrorism-fighting effort.

So, too, is the strategy of fighting small, smartly and covertly, avoiding land invasions such as those in Iraq and Afghanistan that caused Muslim outrage and helped draw fresh recruits, says Rand’s Jones, in his new book “Hunting in the Shadows,” a comprehensive history of the counterterror search since Sept. 11.

Many U.S. officials cite the Yemen model as the way ahead: a small network of U.S. intelligence and military forces working with local forces to selectively target militants.

“The key challenge will be balancing aggressive counterterrorism operations with the risk of exacerbating the anti-Western global agenda” of al-Qaida and its affiliates, says Robert Cardillo, a senior official in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

In other words, adds Jones, “it is a war in which the side that kills the most civilians loses.”

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Kimberly Dozier can be reached at Twitter (at)kimberlydozier

Isaiah 28:15 (NLT)
You boast, “We have struck a bargain to cheat death and have made a deal to dodge the grave. The coming destruction can never touch us, for we have built a strong refuge made of lies and deception.”

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Last straw for gulf fishermen???

(gulf food chain damaged)

Published on Apr 19, 2012 by Sheilaaliens (youtube)

BP OIL SPILL AND THE GULF ECOSYSTEM: “Deformed Seafood”. Officials Close Gulf Waters to Shrimping

www.globalresearch.ca

Another source…

bpoil.wordpress.com

By Stuart Smith    April 26, 2012

Alarmed by widespread reports of visibly sick, deformed seafood coming out of the Gulf of Mexico, state officials have closed area waters to shrimping this morning (April 23). The waters will be closed indefinitely as scientists run tests in an effort to get a handle on a situation that is fast becoming a full-blown crisis on the Gulf Coast.

The closures – including all waters in the Mississippi Sound, Mobile Bay, areas of Bon Secour, Wolf Bay and Little Lagoon – mark the first official step in responding to increasingly urgent reports from fishermen and scientists of grotesquely disfigured seafood from Louisiana to the Florida panhandle.

The move is yet another major setback for the once-legendary Gulf seafood industry as it continues to struggle under the devastating impact of the BP oil spill, which began in April 2010.

Two years later, reports of severely deformed shrimp with bulging tumors – and no eyes – have become common.

And it’s not just the shrimp. Commercial fishermen are reporting red snapper and grouper riddled with deep lesions and covered with strange black streaks. Highly underdeveloped blue crabs are being pulled up in traps without eyes and claws (see link at bottom to my previous post on seafood deformities).

For those who thought 205 million gallons of oil and 2 million gallons of toxic dispersant weren’t going to have an impact on Gulf seafood, you need to check back in with reality.

As for the impetus for the shrimping closures, consider this from an April 18 Al Jazeera report by Dahr Jamail, who has doggedly covered the BP spill since the early days of the disaster:

Tracy Kuhns and her husband Mike Roberts, commercial fishers from Barataria, Louisiana, are finding eyeless shrimp.

“At the height of the last white shrimp season, in September, one of our friends caught 400 pounds of these,” Kuhns told Al Jazeera while showing a sample of the eyeless shrimp.

According to Kuhns, at least 50 per cent of the shrimp caught in that period in Barataria Bay, a popular shrimping area that was heavily impacted by BP’s oil and dispersants, were eyeless. Kuhns added: “Disturbingly, not only do the shrimp lack eyes, they even lack eye sockets.”

Disturbing indeed. I am deeply saddened but not surprised by the shrimping closures. I applaud the courageous move by state officials to put consumer safety first. There’s no doubt in my mind – as I’ve said for months on end – that seafood coming out of the Gulf of Mexico is unfit for human consumption.

We will bring you updates on water testing and any word on when these areas of the Gulf will be re-opened to shrimping.

Read my April 20 post on seafood deformities here: http://www.stuarthsmith.com/a-taste-of-the-grotesque-in-the-gulf-eyeless-shrimp-clawless-crabs-and-lesion-covered-fish

Global Research Articles by Stuart Smith

Deuteronomy 8:18 (NIV)
But remember the LORD your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms His covenant, which He swore to your forefathers, as it is today…

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False flag operations…

(and don’t forget friday, february 26, 1993… the first wtc attack orchestrated by the f.b.i.)

“Evil, Filthy, Rotten Conspiracy” by Carl Klang

Terrorist Plots, Hatched by the F.B.I.

www.nytimes.com

By DAVID K. SHIPLER    Published: April 28, 2012

“But all these dramas were facilitated by the F.B.I.”

THE United States has been narrowly saved from lethal terrorist plots in recent years — or so it has seemed. A would-be suicide bomber was intercepted on his way to the Capitol; a scheme to bomb synagogues and shoot Stinger missiles at military aircraft was developed by men in Newburgh, N.Y.; and a fanciful idea to fly explosive-laden model planes into the Pentagon and the Capitol was hatched in Massachusetts.

But all these dramas were facilitated by the F.B.I., whose undercover agents and informers posed as terrorists offering a dummy missile, fake C-4 explosives, a disarmed suicide vest and rudimentary training. Suspects naïvely played their parts until they were arrested.

When an Oregon college student, Mohamed Osman Mohamud, thought of using a car bomb to attack a festive Christmas-tree lighting ceremony in Portland, the F.B.I. provided a van loaded with six 55-gallon drums of “inert material,” harmless blasting caps, a detonator cord and a gallon of diesel fuel to make the van smell flammable. An undercover F.B.I. agent even did the driving, with Mr. Mohamud in the passenger seat. To trigger the bomb the student punched a number into a cellphone and got no boom, only a bust.

This is legal, but is it legitimate? Without the F.B.I., would the culprits commit violence on their own? Is cultivating potential terrorists the best use of the manpower designed to find the real ones? Judging by their official answers, the F.B.I. and the Justice Department are sure of themselves — too sure, perhaps.

Carefully orchestrated sting operations usually hold up in court. Defendants invariably claim entrapment and almost always lose, because the law requires that they show no predisposition to commit the crime, even when induced by government agents. To underscore their predisposition, many suspects are “warned about the seriousness of their plots and given opportunities to back out,” said Dean Boyd, a Justice Department spokesman. But not always, recorded conversations show. Sometimes they are coaxed to continue.

Undercover operations, long practiced by the F.B.I., have become a mainstay of counterterrorism, and they have changed in response to the post-9/11 focus on prevention. “Prior to 9/11 it would be very unusual for the F.B.I. to present a crime opportunity that wasn’t in the scope of the activities that a person was already involved in,” said Mike German of the American Civil Liberties Union, a lawyer and former F.B.I. agent who infiltrated white supremacist groups. An alleged drug dealer would be set up to sell drugs to an undercover agent, an arms trafficker to sell weapons. That still happens routinely, but less so in counterterrorism, and for good reason.

“There isn’t a business of terrorism in the United States, thank God,” a former federal prosecutor, David Raskin, explained.

“You’re not going to be able to go to a street corner and find somebody who’s already blown something up,” he said. Therefore, the usual goal is not “to find somebody who’s already engaged in terrorism but find somebody who would jump at the opportunity if a real terrorist showed up in town.”

And that’s the gray area. Who is susceptible? Anyone who plays along with the agents, apparently. Once the snare is set, law enforcement sees no choice. “Ignoring such threats is not an option,” Mr. Boyd argued, “given the possibility that the suspect could act alone at any time or find someone else willing to help him.”

Typically, the stings initially target suspects for pure speech — comments to an informer outside a mosque, angry postings on Web sites, e-mails with radicals overseas — then woo them into relationships with informers, who are often convicted felons working in exchange for leniency, or with F.B.I. agents posing as members of Al Qaeda or other groups.

Some targets have previous involvement in more than idle talk: for example, Waad Ramadan Alwan, an Iraqi in Kentucky, whose fingerprints were found on an unexploded roadside bomb near Bayji, Iraq, and Raja Khan of Chicago, who had sent funds to an Al Qaeda leader in Pakistan.

But others seem ambivalent, incompetent and adrift, like hapless wannabes looking for a cause that the informer or undercover agent skillfully helps them find. Take the Stinger missile defendant James Cromitie, a low-level drug dealer with a criminal record that included no violence or hate crime, despite his rants against Jews. “He was searching for answers within his Islamic faith,” said his lawyer, Clinton W. Calhoun III, who has appealed his conviction. “And this informant, I think, twisted that search in a really pretty awful way, sort of misdirected Cromitie in his search and turned him towards violence.”

THE informer, Shahed Hussain, had been charged with fraud, but avoided prison and deportation by working undercover in another investigation. He was being paid by the F.B.I. to pose as a wealthy Pakistani with ties to Jaish-e-Mohammed, a terrorist group that Mr. Cromitie apparently had never heard of before they met by chance in the parking lot of a mosque.

“Brother, did you ever try to do anything for the cause of Islam?” Mr. Hussain asked at one point.

“O.K., brother,” Mr. Cromitie replied warily, “where you going with this, brother?”

Two days later, the informer told him, “Allah has more work for you to do,” and added, “Revelation is going to come in your dreams that you have to do this thing, O.K.?” About 15 minutes later, Mr. Hussain proposed the idea of using missiles, saying he could get them in a container from China. Mr. Cromitie laughed.

Reading hundreds of pages of transcripts of the recorded conversations is like looking at the inkblots of a Rorschach test. Patterns of willingness and hesitation overlap and merge. “I don’t want anyone to get hurt,” Mr. Cromitie said, and then explained that he meant women and children. “I don’t care if it’s a whole synagogue of men.” It took 11 months of meandering discussion and a promise of $250,000 to lead him, with three co-conspirators he recruited, to plant fake bombs at two Riverdale synagogues.

“Only the government could have made a ‘terrorist’ out of Mr. Cromitie, whose buffoonery is positively Shakespearean in its scope,” said Judge Colleen McMahon, sentencing him to 25 years. She branded it a “fantasy terror operation” but called his attempt “beyond despicable” and rejected his claim of entrapment.

The judge’s statement was unusual, but Mr. Cromitie’s characteristics were not. His incompetence and ambivalence could be found among other aspiring terrorists whose grandiose plans were nurtured by law enforcement. They included men who wanted to attack fuel lines at Kennedy International Airport; destroy the Sears Tower (now Willis Tower) in Chicago; carry out a suicide bombing near Tampa Bay, Fla., and bomb subways in New York and Washington. Of the 22 most frightening plans for attacks since 9/11 on American soil, 14 were developed in sting operations.

Another New York City subway plot, which recently went to trial, needed no help from government. Nor did a bombing attempt in Times Square, the abortive underwear bombing in a jetliner over Detroit, a planned attack on Fort Dix, N.J., and several smaller efforts. Some threats are real, others less so. In terrorism, it’s not easy to tell the difference.

Acts 9:23 (NASV) conspiracy is nothing new…
When many days had elapsed, the Jews plotted together to do away with him…

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M.O. of the wicked… poisoning

(forensic technician michael a. cormier… poison victim)

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Psalm 86:14 (NIV)
The arrogant are attacking me, O God; a band of ruthless men seeks my life–men without regard for you…

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Possible arsenic poisoning probed in death of coroner’s official

latimesblogs.latimes.com

By Richard Winton    April 28, 2012 |  7:51 am

Authorities said a Los Angeles County coroner’s official, Michael Cormier, appears to have died from poisoning.

“At this point we haven’t ruled out foul play,” said Lt. Alan Hamilton of the Los Angeles Police Department. “It is one of the things being considered. We are waiting for the coroner’s results.”

Law enforcement sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation was ongoing, said that finding the presence of poison does not necessarily mean the death was a homicide because the substance could have accidentally entered his system. According to sources, arsenic was one poison being examined as potential cause but stressed no final determination has been made.

Cormier, 61, died last week after being taken to Providence St. Joseph Medical Center in Burbank from his North Hollywood home. Earlier he had complained of pain and vomiting.

Hospital staff notified police about concerns surrounding the cause of Cormier’s death.

Ed Winter, deputy chief coroner, said that an autopsy had been performed but that a determination of the cause of death has been deferred pending further tests.

Investigators have also interviewed his family and friends. Messages left at the home Friday went unanswered.

Authorities examined Cormier’s Auckland Avenue home for clues in the death. Sources said several hazardous materials experts and officers searched the small home.

Cormier, who also worked as a coroner’s photographer, had registered a small business under the name MAC Autopsy Services at the home.

Related post…

Poison… their favorite weapon and their greatest fear…

A movie about this theme…

www.amazon.com

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Psalm 37:32 (Aramaic Bible)
The wicked lies in wait for the righteous and seeks to kill him

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Deuteronomy 32:32 (NIV)
Their vine comes from the vine of Sodom and from the fields of Gomorrah. Their grapes are filled with poison, and their clusters with bitterness…

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Unless you believe that I am He…

(baptism… important and often overlooked and ignored)

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John 8:23-24
And He was saying to them, “You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world. “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, YOU WILL DIE IN YOUR SINS.”

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Related posts…

The first thing to do…

Church of Christ tract on Baptism…

How to become a Christian

There is a way to death…

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(when men forget their God)

Reading of the Declaration of Independence

Uploaded by DOIRoadTrip on Aug 27, 2009 (youtube)

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Deuteronomy 28:33 (NIV)
A people that you do not know will eat what your land and labor produce, and you will have nothing but cruel oppression all your days…

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Isaiah 33:22 (NIV)
For the LORD is our Judge, the LORD is our Lawgiver, the LORD is our King; it is He who will save us…

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The Day of the Lord will come…

(a bad time to be a worldly idolater)

www.youtube.com

Uploaded by christianroots on Sep 7, 2008   by Pastor Peter John Peters…

Related posts…

Now would be a good time…

A word to the wise…

II Peter 3:10 (NIV)
But the Day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare…

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Angels of light…

www.youtube.com

(connections… freemasonry, vatican, occult, humanist state government, idolatry)

Know Your Enemy (Pt. 53 – The Capitol)

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II Corinthians 11:14 (NLT)
But I am not surprised! Even satan disguises himself as an angel of light…

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(catholic inquisition resumes)

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Ephesians 5:13 (NLT)
But their evil intentions will be exposed when the light shines on them…

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Pope calls in Opus Dei troubleshooter to uncover source of Vatican leaks

Cardinal given ‘pontifical mandate’ to hunt Holy See staffers releasing documents on corruption claims in ‘Vatileaks’ scandal

www.guardian.co.uk

Tom Kington in Rome    guardian.co.uk, Thursday 26 April 2012 12.20 EDT

Vatican staffers who have been leaking embarrassing letters about corruption and nepotism inside the tiny city state are to be hunted down by a crack squad of cardinals led by a senior member of the religious group Opus Dei.

Irritated by the anonymous release of documents to the press this year, Pope Benedict has named Cardinal Julian Herranz, 82, to lead a three-man team which will haul in staffers for questioning and rifle through files until they catch the perpetrators of what has been dubbed “Vatileaks”.

A short statement printed on Thursday on the front page of the Vatican’s daily newspaper warned the team had a full “pontifical mandate” to “shed complete light” on the whistle blowers, who have lifted the lid on alleged theft and false accounting.

Herranz was a long-time personal secretary to Josemaría Escrivá , the now canonised founder of Opus Dei, which has been accused of excessive secrecy, strict control over members and undue influence within the Vatican – a reputation pushed by Dan Brown’s thriller The Da Vinci Code.

One of two cardinals who are members of the group, Herranz has insisted that Opus Dei has “no hidden agenda” and is only interested in the “the message of Christ”, but he does appear to be cut out to be a Vatican troubleshooter, once stating that “men need to act decisively, like Jesus Christ – who was a real man”.

Herranz’s squad, which met for the first time this week, is just one of three inquiries now under way at the Holy See into the leak of letters in January and February that discuss the mysterious kidnapping of Emanuela Orlandi – the daughter of a Vatican employee in 1983 – the likely date of Benedict’s death and an internal row over just how transparent the Vatican bank should be as it tries to shrug off allegations of money laundering.

The most shocking revelations are in a letter addressed to the Vatican’s secretary of state by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the deputy governor of Vatican City, denouncing the signing by employees of inflated contracts with friendly companies. As proof, Viganò said he had discovered the price of the Christmas nativity scene in St Peter’s Square was €250,000 (£204,000) more than it should have been.

One priest, who Viganò describes as “vulgar” and “arrogant” had been responsible for nepotism, fake invoicing and €70,000 going missing, he claimed.

After telling all, Viganò was reassigned to the US as papal nunzio, an appointment he describes as punishment for his honesty in a plaintive letter to Benedict in which he begs for a commission to look into his claims.

Since then, the Vatican has instead focused on finding out who leaked the letters, which it describes as “biased and trivial”.

“I hope the Vatican employs the same tenacity in improving transparency at its bank and in reopening the Orlandi kidnapping case as it has with this inquiry,” said Gianluigi Nuzzi, the Italian journalist who first broadcast the contents of the Viganò letters.

Herranz has been called in by the pope before to snuff out trouble at the Vatican. In 2007, he oversaw the suspension of a senior Vatican cleric who was secretly filmed telling a young man he was “hot” and that homosexual sex was not sinful.

Any employees now nabbed by Herranz and his team in the Vatileaks probe could be fired or face canonical punishment if they are clerics. But to track them down, the three “detectives” – as they were dubbed by Italian newspapers on Thursday – must penetrate the secretive world of the Vatican’s bureaucracy, a task that Il Messaggero warned could turn out to be a “Mission Impossible”.

Related posts…

And who will run this “New World Order”???

Answer to Esau… Obadiah!!!

All under one hat, no doubt…

“First time in the history of the United States”… (papacy losing it’s power)

The wicked man will be no more… Psalms 37:10

Hebrews 4:12 (ESV)
For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

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A loss of status…

(9000 marines leaving okinawa)

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Deuteronomy 28:25 (ASV)
Jehovah will cause thee to be smitten before thine enemies; thou shalt go out one way against them, and shalt flee seven ways before them: and thou shalt be tossed to and from among all the kingdoms of the earth…

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Excerpt…

“Japan is not just a close ally, but also a close friend.” (yeah right…)

U.S., Japan unveil revised plan for Okinawa

news.yahoo.com

By Paul Eckert | Reuters    27 April 2012

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States and Japan announced on Thursday a revised agreement on streamlining the U.S. military presence on Okinawa that will shift 9,000 Marines from the southern Japanese island to Guam and other Asia-Pacific sites.

The new plan, unveiled days before Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda meets President Barack Obama in Washington, helps the allies work around the central but still-unresolved dispute over moving the Futenma air base from a crowded part of Okinawa to a new site that has vexed relations for years.

“I am very pleased that, after many years, we have reached this important agreement and plan of action. I applaud the hard work and effort that went into crafting it,” U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said in a statement.

“Japan is not just a close ally, but also a close friend.”

Under the agreement, 9,000 U.S. Marines will be relocated. Five thousand will go to Guam and the rest to other sites such as Hawaii and Australia, a joint U.S.-Japanese statement said.

The updated version of a long-delayed 2006 plan was needed to achieve “a U.S. force posture in the Asia-Pacific region that is more geographically distributed, operationally resilient and politically sustainable,” the statement said.

Snags over Okinawa had raised questions about the viability of the Obama administration’s strategy of shifting U.S. forces from other regions to the Asia-Pacific to deal with nuclear saber-rattling by North Korea, the rapid military buildup of China and territorial disputes in the South China Sea.

Friction over U.S. bases intensified after the 1995 gang rape of a Japanese schoolgirl by U.S. servicemen. The case sparked widespread protests by Okinawans, who had long resented the American presence due to crime, noise and deadly accidents.

There are about 47,000 U.S. troops in Japan under a 1960 bilateral security treaty.

Okinawa, occupied by the United States from 1945-72, accounts for less than 1 percent of Japan’s total land but hosts three-quarters of the U.S. military facilities in the country in terms of land area.

“This has been … bogged down for years, but now we have been able to come up with a new approach de-linking the Futenma relocation from other elements, like moving out Marine forces to Guam and returning some parts of Okinawa,” said Ichiro Fujisaki, Japan’s ambassador to the United States.

“Things are going to start moving,” he told a gathering at a think tank in Washington.

Kurt Campbell, assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, said the deal was discussed widely with U.S. lawmakers, who had refused to fund the overhaul on Okinawa until the Futenma deadlock was resolved and the administration fully explained how the move would fit overall U.S. strategy.

“We think it breaks a very long stalemate … that has plagued our politics, that has clogged both of our systems,” said Campbell.

“REBALANCING” TOWARD ASIA-PACIFIC

A senior State Department official said: “This is really a key component of our strategic rebalancing toward the Asia-Pacific region.”

The new policy has also entailed closer U.S. military ties with the Philippines, Australia and Singapore.

The agreement includes a $3.1 billion cash commitment from Japan for the move to Guam as well as for developing joint training ranges on Guam and on Tinian and Pagan in the U.S.-controlled Northern Mariana Islands.

The previous agreement on the move to Guam had Japan providing $6.1 billion in support, with $2.8 billion in cash and the rest in financing arrangements. The two sides agreed to limit that to $3.1 billion from Japan because of the smaller footprint the Marines will have in Guam

Campbell acknowledged that more work needed to be done, including finding a replacement for Futenma.

Proposed replacement sites for Futenma on the subtropical island that lies between Japan’s main islands and Taiwan have met strong local opposition. At the same time Tokyo was in political disarray, with six prime ministers in six years.

“Does this agreement answer every question? It does not. Is there more programmatic and technical work that is necessary? Yes,” said Campbell.

“But at a fundamental level, we think this agreement moves the ball very substantially down the field in a way that no one would have anticipated a few months ago,” he said.

Separating the move to Guam from the Futenma issue frees up the allies to work more on cybersecurity, space, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations and ballistic missile defense, a senior U.S. Defense Department official said.

Senators Carl Levin, John McCain and Jim Webb – top members of the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee who had frozen Okinawa funding until their budgetary and strategic questions were answered – said some of their concerns had been addressed.

“We still have many questions about the specific details of this statement and its implications for our force posture in the Asia-Pacific region,” they said in a statement, which also vowed to keep working on “a mutually beneficial, militarily effective, and fiscally sustainable agreement” on Okinawa and Guam.

(Additional reporting by David Alexander; Editing by Peter Cooney, Todd Eastham and Paul Tait)

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