Taliban Attack U.S. Consulate in Afghanistan

Reuters

Reuters

BRIAN FELDMAN12:47 AM ET

Taliban militants set off a suicide car bomb and then engaged in a gunfight outside the United States consulate building in Herat, Afghanistan early Friday morning at around 6 a.m. In addition to the deaths of the five attackers, at least two security officers were killed, according to reports from the Associated Press. The BBC offers a conflicting report that three people were killed in the attack: two policemen and a consul guard. All American personnel are reportedly safe and accounted for.

Footage broadcast on Afghanistan’s Tolo television network showed Afghan police dragging away a badly bloodied person from the scene, but it was unclear if he was dead or who he was. Rubble and twisted pieces of metal lay strewn in a seemingly wide area near the consulate, the footage showed.

A spokesman for the Taliban has claimed responsibility for the event. The AP notes that similar attacks have been occurring with greater frequency in the northern and western region of the country, whereas in past years, the southern and eastern areas have typically been more violent.

The Herat chief of police said that the situation had been handled within an hour of its occurrence.

Source: http://www.theatlanticwire.com/global/2013/09/taliban-attack-us-consulate-afghanistan/69372/

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China’s Online Rumor Crackdown Makes Going Viral a Crime

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CONNOR SIMPSON  2:17 PM ET

Don’t spread rumors over the Internet if you’ll be in China soon, because if that rumor catches on with a startlingly small number of the country’s 1.3 billion people then you could face some jail time. The country’s top court drafted a law on Monday interpreting how the spread of “online rumors” should be handled by lawmakers in the future. According to the new orders, Reuters reports, people who post false rumors online could be charged with defamation and face three years in prison. The rumor must be read 5,000 times or reposted 500 times on social media before the courts could step in, but that’s not an outrageously high threshold in a country with so many people.

The government has been trying to crack down on citizens using social media, like China’s popular Twitter-clone Sina Weibo, and online forums to share opinions that regard the government unfavorably. The government previously tried setting up a website to combat the spread of false rumors online. Their primary concern is citizens who speak out agains the government, clearly, but there are new rules included for rumors that would classify as cyber bullying stateside. If a post causes someone to commit “suicide or self-mutilation,” defamation charges could follow. Of course people could also face charges for posts that cause protests, or have a “bad international effect.” “No country would consider the slander of other people as ‘freedom of speech’,” court spokesman Sun Jungong told reporters on Monday.

That going viral at all in China is now illegal if what you say is false, or out of line with what the government thinks, or could to be linked to someone hurting himself, is slightly mind-boggling. There are so many false rumors that go viral over the course of a week that U.S. courts would be plugged with defamation charges if similar laws were ever enacted stateside. False rumors spread on Monday morning about United Nation’s Syria envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, and they prompted a response from the organization. Or, how about the fake rumor about the 42 suicidal One Direction fans? Or the fake celebrity Twitter accounts that fake celebrity deaths? Half of what the blogging industrial complex does now is debunk fake rumors that spread on the Internet. The people who started these rumors could all face jail time in China. Maybe… no, nevermind.

Source: The Atlantic Wire @ http://www.theatlanticwire.com/technology/2013/09/viral-online-rumors-are-now-illegal-china/69203/

[Pictured: Chinese blogger Isaac Mao, seen in this 2012 file photo, had more than 30,000 followers on Weibo before the government shut down his account.]

Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments or send an email to the author atconnorbsimpson@gmail.com. You can share ideas for stories on the Open Wire.

Men’s Rights Redditor on Gaming: “It would be nice if women/feminists … fucked off and created their own thing rather than moving into a men’s space … .”

we hunted the mammoth

So the other day the fellas in the Men’s Rights subreddit were having another thoughtful and nuanced discussion about OMG WOMEN PLAYING VIDEO GAMES GET OUT GIRL GERMS EWWWW GAMING IS FOR MEN ONLY HELP HELP WE’RE BEING OPPRESSED and the always insightful IHaveALargePenis offered this little suggestion to the “feminists/women” of the world:

IHaveALargePenis 25 points 6 days ago (51|26)  It would be nice if women/feminists for once fucked off and created their own thing rather than moving into a men's space (after decades of berating it and the men participating in it) and demanding things change to suit them.  Remember revenge of the nerds? A movie that's about 30 years old? All those "nerds" are the ones in charge of modern technology. They're the Bill Gates' and Steve Jobs' of today and people love their products. They didn't have it easy getting to where they did, they sure as shit weren't given a green light for simply being men. So why is it that women aren't walking down the same road? Hell it's not even the same road since most people don't actively insult them or tell them they can't do it for simply being women.  It would be nice if feminists for once proved everyone wrong and themselves right by getting a bunch of women together and creating a new system/industry from the ground up which men want to flock to.

Huh. So in return I guess men would agree to hand science fiction over to the ladies — after all, it was one of them, Mary Shelley, who basically invented the whole genre back in 1818 with her mad-scientist classic Frankenstein.

Mr. Penis also gets bonus points for explicitly conflating women and feminists — most MRAs do this only implicitly, and then pretend they haven’t — and wins this month’s “Really? You Really Just Said That?” MRA Irony Award for declaring in his second paragraph that “people don’t actively insult [women] or tell them…

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“Jackass” Joke about Vladimir Putin Went Viral

“Jackass” Joke about Vladimir Putin Went Viral

“Collective unconsciousness spoke through President Obama’s voice calling Russian President, Vladimir Putin, a “Jackass.” And though the actual name-calling never happened, it could not change the fact: the joke looked very real, and people bought it.

The whole story was introduced to the public by a satiric columnist of New Yorker magazine, Andy Borowitz, and depicted his wildest dreams about what should have happened at the end of G20. He played so well with the unconscious mind that everybody believed it. No, really, can you imagine Obama calling David Cameron a “Jackass?” No way. But Mr.Putin – easy.

Talking about the collective mind of the world, according to the survey conducted by the Pew Research Center, among 39 nations, a favorable view of Russia has slipped compared to 2007 and now is expressed by just 36% of respondents versus 39% who view Russia unfavorably. And who is representing Russia most for all these respondents on the international arena? Mr.Putin of course, the Russian President.

The line has been crossed many times before, but this time it may have been overdone.

If President Putin can publicly call his opponents on the Syrian issue “utter nonsense” -if you translate it in a polite diplomatic way, or “absolute stupidity” in actual Russian (“dur’ nesusvetnaya”), then after all, why can’t others do the same and call him names?

Putin openly and wrongly called the USA Secretary of State John Kerry, a liar over his Congress testimony just few days before the G20 summit. Kerry, who met with Mr.Putin a few times before, on his last meeting was kept waiting for the Russian President for three hours. He had decided not to attend the G20 summit, offended by the accusations.

Speaker of the House, John Boehner, also declined a proposal to meet the Russian lawmakers in Washington because of the situation in Syria.

Senator McCain blamed President Obama for underestimating Putin’s true intentions and on his own accord called the Russian President a thief, asking to give back the Super Bowl Ring taken from rightful owner Robert Kraft.

The story of the ring went viral just this year; although, Mr. Kraft lost his Super Bowl Ring during a meeting with Vladimir Putin in 2005. As he describes the scene, after he proudly showed the ring to the Russian President the admirer simply put it in his pocket pretending it was a present. Mr.Kraft was too shocked to contradict.

 

Ring-650x433The “thief” accusations, though very strong and questionable, was not completely out of the Russian President’s league. He is well known in his country for his sharp criminal-like slang. He wanted it to be “done in the urinal” to Chechen rebels whom he a priori called terrorists. He once offered to circumcise a French journalist who was asking questions about eradicating civilians in Chechnya; and Putin publicly praised the sexual prowess of an Israeli president Moshe Katsav, accused of rape.

French journalist: … Don’t you think that by trying to eradicate terrorism in Chechnya you are going to eradicate the civilian population of Chechnya?
Vladimir Putin: If you want to become an Islamic fundamentalist and be circumcised, come to Moscow. We are multiconfessional. We have very good specialists. I can recommend one for the operation. He’ll make sure nothing grows back.
Once asked, Vladimir Putin explained his colorful language, saying that when he was young he preferred drinking beer to studying. He also admitted being involved in street gang activities in his childhood years.

If his rebel past still haunts him, than “Jackass” might have actually worked. It would have been a compete diplomatic disaster for President Obama if true, but paradoxically it might have been the indication of the only language President Putin is able to understand – the language of rude dominance.

Even if the word was not said, many silently thought the same. Like “If you think I’m the only one who feels this way, you’re kidding yourself” as Andy Borowitz put it. His joke might really be the talk of the week because it sounded very real. And if you ask me, President Putin asked for it.”

By Alsu Salakhutdinov

Source: http://guardianlv.com/2013/09/jackass-joke-about-vladimir-putin-went-viral/

Additional Source:http://www.idesigntimes.com/articles/7567/20130907/president-obama-really-call-putin-names-g20.htm

G20 ENDS ABRUPTLY AS OBAMA CALLS PUTIN A JACKASS

obama-putin-g20-580

“ST. PETERSBURG (The Borowitz Report)—Hopes for a positive G20 summit crumbled today as President Obama blurted to Russia’s Vladimir Putin at a joint press appearance, “Everyone here thinks you’re a jackass.”

The press corps appeared stunned by the uncharacteristic outburst from Mr. Obama, who then unleashed a ten-minute tirade at the stone-faced Russian President.

“Look, I’m not just talking about Snowden and Syria,” Mr. Obama said. “What about Pussy Riot? What about your anti-gay laws? Total jackass moves, my friend.”

As Mr. Putin narrowed his eyes in frosty silence, Mr. Obama seemed to warm to his topic.

“If you think I’m the only one who feels this way, you’re kidding yourself,” Mr. Obama said, jabbing his finger in the direction of the Russian President’s face. “Ask Angela Merkel. Ask David Cameron. Ask the Turkish guy. Every last one of them thinks you’re a dick.”

Shortly after Mr. Obama’s volcanic performance, Mr. Putin released a terse official statement, reading, “I should be afraid of this skinny man? I wrestle bears.”

After one day of meetings, the G20 nations voted unanimously on a resolution that said maybe everyone should just go home.

Get the Borowitz Report delivered to your inbox.

Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP”

Source:http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/borowitzreport/2013/09/g20-ends-abruptly-as-obama-calls-putin-a-jackass.html?utm_source=tny&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=borowitz&mbid=nl_Borowitz%20(163)

Syria’s Assad Regime Prepares for an American Assault

World

In Syria, anti-aircraft missiles are at the ready. Army battalions have been broken up and relocated from barracks to university dorms and sensitive materiel has been moved to the basements of private residences. As U.S. President Barack Obama courts Congressional approval for a proposed attack on Syrian security installations in response to the alleged use of chemical weapons, the regime is responding with defensive measures that could change the face of the war, according to rebel commanders and witnesses inside the country.

As the UN refugee agency announces its two millionth refugee to flee across Syria’s border to the relative safety of exile Tuesday morning, it is looking increasingly unlikely that the estimated seven million Syrians, or one third of the population, that have been forced from their homes by more than two years of war will return anytime soon. Syrian President Bashar Assad has turned the delay in…

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