themcglynn.com

22 Apr

News and Analyses, A Foreign Perspective

English Online International Newspapers

For a change from the same old news stories from the same old news networks, here are links to English-edition online newspapers from other parts of the world. Nearly all of these are English-edition daily newspapers, with an emphasis on the Middle East and Asia. These sites have interesting editorials and essays, and many have links to other good news sources. We try to limit this list to those sites which are regularly updated, reliable, with a high percentage of “up” time.

Some of the available newspapers:

Asia & CIS

www.newscentralasia.com/

China

english.peopledaily.com.cn/home.html

China & Hong Kong

www.scmp.com/news

France

www.france24.com/en/france/

Israel

www.haaretz.com/

Norway

www.newsinenglish.no/category/news/

Palestine

english.pnn.ps/

Russia

english.pravda.ru/

Ukraine

www.ukrainianjournal.com/

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A judge will begin considering the claims of three CIA torture victims who underwent some of the most brutal interrogation techniques of the post-9/11 era

Suleiman Abdullah Salim said that while being tortured by CIA interrogators during his five years in custody, ‘you can’t sleep, you can’t eat, you can’t smell’.

Suleiman Abdullah Salim said that while being tortured by CIA interrogators during his five years in custody, ‘you can’t sleep, you can’t eat, you can’t smell’. Photograph: ACLU

Although they were held for years and subjected to what their lawsuit describes as “war crimes”, the three men were never accused of being members of al-Qaida. They were never charged with any crimes. They were left with serious psychological and physical injuries but have received no compensation from the US government.

The victims’ civil lawsuit alleges that psychologists James Elmer Mitchell and John “Bruce” Jessen, independent contractors hired by the CIA, designed a brutal torture program that amounted to a “joint criminal enterprise”.

Over the course of five years, 119 men were abused using their techniques; the three plaintiffs in the suit were among the 39 subjected to the most harsh torture and scientific experimentation, which included anal penetration, mock execution, being doused with icy cold water and enduring something akin to waterboarding.

In 2012, the Department of Justice announced that CIA officials responsible for the torture regime would not face criminal charges.

Mitchell and Jessen’s attorneys will argue before senior federal judge Justin L Quackenbush on Friday that the case should be dismissed because the psychologists did not commit the acts that they are accused of in Salim, Ben Soud and Rahman’s suit, which was filed in October.

“They did not create or establish the CIA enhanced interrogation program,” defense attorney Christopher W Tompkins said in court documents, “they did not make decisions about Plaintiffs’ capture, treatment, confinement conditions, and interrogations; and they did not perform, supervise or control Plaintiffs’ interrogations.”………….

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Boris Johnson is accused of bad judgment after hitting back at US president’s intervention in EU referendum debate

The mayor of London, Boris Johnson, criticises Barack Obama’s intervention in Britain’s European Union membership referendum. The US president is visiting London to meet David Cameron, and has urged Britons to vote to remain in the EU in the referendum

The shadow chancellor has accused Boris Johnson of dog-whistle racism for writing an article in which the London mayor quoted claims that Barack Obama’s “part-Kenyan” heritage had driven him towards anti-British sentiment.

John McDonnell joined fellow Labour MPs Yvette Cooper and Chuka Umunna in questioning Johnson’s judgment in referring to the president’s ancestry in an article for the Sun newspaper.

“Mask slips again. Boris part-Kenyan Obama comment is yet another example of dog-whistle racism from senior Tories. He should withdraw it,” McDonnell tweeted.

ohnson, a high-profile figure in the campaign for Britain to leave the EU, wrote about the decision of the Obama administration to remove a bust of Britain’s wartime leader Winston Churchill from the Oval Office.

“Some said it was a snub to Britain. Some said it was a symbol of the part-Kenyan president’s ancestral dislike of the British empire – of which Churchill had been such a fervent defender,” said Johnson in an article designed to hit back at Obama after the US president waded into the EU referendum debate on Friday.

The mayor and Tory MP said Obama’s country would “not dream of embroiling itself” in anything similar to the EU, which he said was inching towards a federal superstate………

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Rate among women and girls increases more quickly than among men, yet males continued to account for the majority of deaths, according to a new report

Silhouette of a woman against blinds

This new suicide data underpins recent studies that showed a decline in life expectancy among middle-aged, white Americans – especially women. Photograph: Alamy

US suicides have reached their highest peak in 30 years, with middle-aged Americans making up the largest part of the growing epidemic, according to new federal data.

A report published on Friday by the National Center for Health Statistics found that between 1999 and 2014, the largest increases in suicide were seen among middle-aged men and women 45 to 64 years old, and girls 10 to 14 years old. Older Americans, aged 75 and over, were the only group to see a decline in suicides during the same period.

The suicide rate among women increased more quickly than among men. But men continued to account for the vast majority of deaths in 2014, the latest year for which data is available. The suicide rate among men was 20.7 per 100,000, compared to 5.8 per 100,000 among women.

This new suicide data underpins recent studies that showed a decline in life expectancy among middle-aged, white Americans – especially women. Such studies attributed the increasing death rate to drug and alcohol misuse, as well as suicide. However, the NCHS data did not analyze racial and ethnic differences in suicide…………

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Gun control advocates fear that arming security staff could be the start of a dangerous trend of bringing high-powered firearms into US classrooms

The Douglas County school district disclosed this week that it spent more than $12,000 on 10 rifles for its security team.

The Douglas County school district disclosed this week that it spent more than $12,000 on 10 rifles for its security team. Photograph: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

A Colorado school district is arming its security staff with semi-automatic rifles in an unprecedented move that gun control advocates fear could be the start of a dangerous trend of bringing high-powered firearms into US classrooms.

The Douglas County school district, which serves elementary, middle and high school students in a suburb south of Denver, disclosed this week that it spent more than $12,000 on 10 Bushmaster “long guns” for its security team – the kind of assault weapons that gunmen have used in deadly mass shootings in Colorado and across the country in recent years.

School safety experts say this is the first case of a US public school district arming its in-house security officers – as opposed to sworn law enforcement officers – with these kinds of powerful rifles, and some are now raising concerns about the potential for devastating and fatal consequences if the guns get into the hands of the wrong people and if more schools follow suit.

“This is just a slippery slope,” said Tom Mauser, spokesman for gun control group Colorado Ceasefire and father of one of the victims of the 1999 Columbine high school mass shooting. “When you have security people operating them as opposed to law enforcement, that’s going to be a concern. They’re probably not going to get the level of training police get.”………….

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In a moving series of sketches, captures gruelling journeys blighted by poverty and exploitation

Last summer, the Turkish port city of Izmir became the springboard for hundreds of thousands of refugees hoping to reach Greece. They came looking for smugglers to take them to sea – and lifejackets to keep them alive. Every third shop on Fevzi Pasha Boulevard, a wide shopping street that led to the smugglers’ quarter, was happy to oblige.

“Original Yamaha,” shopkeepers would shout to passing refugees. “Come in and try one.” Some shoe-sellers and tailors put their usual stock in the basements, and started selling crudely made lifejackets instead. Smugglers block-booked the rooms of nearby hotels for their clients. Greece lay just across the Aegean.

Sketch map of Turkey, Greece, Macedonia, Serbia and Bulgaria

In 2015, if there was a ground zero for Europe’s migration crisis, it was here, on the western Turkish coast. But a few months on, a deal has been struck between the EU and Ankara which should see most migrants arriving in Greece being deported back to Turkey, and the picture is very different. The hotels are empty. And the shopkeepers on Fevzi Pasha Boulevard are largely back to their original stock.

Sitting in a cafe in front of the train station, a thick orange scarf wrapped around his neck, a Syrian tailor watches people timidly as his son makes castles out of sugar cubes. A few weeks ago this cafe and the square teemed with smugglers conducting their illicit trade in the open, and refugees negotiating prices. Today, two Turkish police officers stand on a street corner to scare away smugglers and their clients…………………

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As Paris climate change agreement is signed in New York, developing country negotiators highlight gulf between ambition and funding

Environmental activists form a human chain to make the peace sign and spell out ‘100% renewable’ at last year’s UN climate change talks in Paris.

Environmental activists form a human chain to make the peace sign and spell out ‘100% renewable’ at last year’s UN climate change talks in Paris. Photograph: Michel Euler/AP

Developing countries must raise more than $4tn (£2,456bn), or roughly the entire annual budget of the US, to implement their climate change pledges by 2030, according to new research.

But much more money will have to be be found by the world’s poorest countries to hold global temperatures enough to avoid catastrophic climate change, say British and Australian researchers who have analysed the financial implications of the pledges made to the UN last December and the money so far offered by rich countries.

As 170 countries meet on Friday in New York to sign the Paris agreement and potentially set the world on a low-carbon development path from 2020, developing country negotiators called for a reality check, saying there was a vast financial gap between the world’s climate change ambition and the reality of funding the emissions reductions needed to avoid catastrophic warming…………..

US politics

Election 2016

Bolivian president Evo Morales sees a lot to like in Bernie Sanders’ candidacy

Reality check Clinton might not be the most experienced candidate

Trump: ‘I’m gonna be so presidential that you people will be so bored’ – vide

The Guardian’s picture editors bring you a selection of the best photographs from around the world, including Rio gymnastics and a T rex on display

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