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Member since Jul 20, 2009, follows 19 people, 1 public groups, 17958 public bookmarks (18009 total).

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  • B.C. First Nations serve eviction notice to CN Rail, logging companies and fishermen | National Post about 1 hour ago
    • B.C. First Nations serve eviction notice to CN Rail, logging companies and fishermen

    • VANCOUVER — British Columbia First Nations are wasting no time in enforcing their claim on traditional lands in light of a landmark Supreme Court of Canada decision recognizing aboriginal land title.

       

      The hereditary chiefs of the Gitxsan First Nations served notice Thursday to CN Rail, logging companies and sport fishermen to leave their territory along the Skeena River in a dispute with the federal and provincial governments over treaty talks.

       

      And the Gitxaala First Nation, with territory on islands off the North Coast, announced plan to file a lawsuit in the Federal Court of Appeal on Friday challenging Ottawa’s recent approval of the Northern Gateway pipeline from Alberta.

    • The Kwikwetlem First Nation also added its voice to the growing list, claiming title to all lands associated with now-closed Riverview Hospital in Metro Vancouver along with other areas of its traditional territory.

       

      They cite the recent high court ruling in Tsilhqot’in v. British Columbia.

       

      “It’s given us a bit of confidence that things are going to be going our way,” said Clarence Innis, acting chief of the Gitxaala. “I think that is a very strong message to Canada … not to ignore First Nations any more but to consult.”

       

      The court application argues that the federal Conservative cabinet did not consider the Gitxaala’s aboriginal rights and title in approving the oil pipeline proposed by Calgary-based Enbridge. The Tsilhqot’in decision bolsters their case, said Rosanne Kyle, the band’s lawyer.

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  • National Security Counselors - Document Vault about 16 hours ago
  • Writing tips from the CIA’s ruthless style manual – Quartz about 16 hours ago
    • Writing tips from the CIA’s ruthless style manual

       
    • This post has been updated.

      +

       

      Strunk & White, it turns out, were CIA sources. The authors of The Elements of Style, a classic American writing guide, are cited alongside Henry Fowler, Wilson Follett, and Jacques Barzun in the Directorate of Intelligence’s Style Manual & Writers Guide for Intelligence Publications, whose eighth edition (from 2011) was quietly posted online (pdf) by the legal nonprofit National Security Counselors a little over a year ago, following a Freedom of Information Act request. (The document first surfaced on social media late last week.) So what role do partisans in the usage wars (pdf) have in a guide produced by an intelligence agency with a hidden hand in many real-life conflicts?

      +

       

      Though the CIA may dissemble as a matter of course, it speaks plainly to policymakers and operations officers—its “customers,” in the language of the manual. The foreword begins, “Good intelligence depends in large measure on clear, concise writing. The information CIA gathers and the analysis it produces mean little if we cannot convey them effectively.”

    • As revealed in the manual, the CIA is a prescriptivist scold, a believer in the serial comma, and a champion of “crisp and pungent” language “devoid of jargon.” It takes a firm stand against false titles used attributively and urges intelligence writers to lowercase the w in Vietnam war (“undeclared”).

      +

       

      Like any style guide, whether it’s produced for a magazine or a government agency, this one reflects its authors’ environment and biases. The missile-related acronyms ABM, ICBM, IRBM, SAM, SLBM, and SRBM are all deemed well-known enough not to have to spell out. “US imperialism” gets scare quotes. Most jarring are the often bellicose usage examples, which are littered with protestshuman rights positionsfree enterprisesurface ship deployments, oilfields, and bombs.

      +

       

      For more insight into how the CIA writes—and thinks—Quartz collected some notable entries from the 190-page document:

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  • UN removes dozens of staff from Libya - Middle East - Al Jazeera English about 16 hours ago
    • UN removes dozens of staff from Libya 

             
       
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      Mission says the "temporary" measure taken for safety of its staff will be reviewed once security conditions improve.

       
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            Last updated: 10 Jul 2014
    • The security situation in Libya has deteriorated sharply in recent months [AFP]
        
       
               

      The United Nations has removed dozens of staff from Libya amid deteriorating security conditions in the strife-torn country.

       

      Samir Ghattas, a spokesperson for the UN Support Mission in Libya, told Al Jazeera that "several dozen" of the mission's more than 200 personnel were being temporarily relocated, although he would not provide a specific number.

       

      "The mission will continue to operate with a reduced number," Ghattas said, noting the removal, ordered this week, was continuing to take effect on Thursday.

       

      "The reduction in presence is due to the prevailing security conditions in the country," he said. "It was taken solely out of concerns for the safety and security of the staff and after a careful consideration of the security situation on the ground in the past few months."

       

      Libya has been gripped by instability since the toppling of former leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, but the security situation has sharply deteriorated in recent months.

       

      Former Prime Minister Ali Zeidan was ousted in March after a no-confidence vote, and fierce fighting has flared in the eastern city of Benghazi between Libyan armed groups and forces loyal to a rogue army general.

    • The murder last month of prominent human-rights activist Salwa Bugaighis drew international condemnation and further inflamed tensions in the North African country.

       

      Magda Mughrabi, a Libya researcher with Amnesty International, also pointed to a recent escalation in attacks against foreign nationals in Libya, including assassinations, arbitrary detentions and abductions.

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  • The world must intervene to restrain the Israeli army | Mustafa Barghouti | Commentisfree | The Guardian about 16 hours ago
    • The world must intervene to restrain the Israeli army 

         
       
       
       
       
       
       
        Behind the fresh conflict in Gaza is the same old problem – a occupation which makes peace impossible for both Israelis and Palestinians 
    • Thursday 10 July 2014
    • The world watches but does nothing as yet another crisis unfolds. The tragedy of the disappearance and killing of three Israeli teenagers last month has provoked a campaign of collective punishment against Palestinian citizens across the occupied territories. Mass arrests have been carried out, whose victims include Palestinian parliamentarians. And revenge attacks have occurred, with Israeli settlers taking the law into their own hands.

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  • Charities ‘muffled,’ ‘harassed’ by Canada Revenue Agency audits: study - National | Globalnews.ca about 16 hours ago
    • July 10, 2014  3:05 pm 
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      Charities ‘muffled,’ ‘harassed’ by Canada Revenue Agency audits: study

         
    • OTTAWA – The Harper government’s “ramp-up of anti-activist rhetoric,” as it’s been called, has drawn criticism in media and academic circles since 2012, but the targets themselves – environmental charities and others – have been muted and self-censored.
    • That’s largely because they've been subject to new, high-stakes tax audits into their political activities that could strip them of their coveted charitable status.

      But perhaps for the first time, some of their voices are being heard unfiltered.

      Gareth Kirkby, a former journalist and now graduate student in communications, interviewed the leaders of 16 such groups for a master’s thesis at Victoria’s Royal Roads University, offering them anonymity in return for candid assessments of their predicaments.

      Kirkby found evidence for what he called "advocacy chill" among charities who’ve been subject to some of the dozens of political-activity audits being conducted by the Canada Revenue Agency.

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  • Hawks for humanity | Al Jazeera America on 2014-07-10
    • These wars weren’t simple humanitarian interventions but attacks motivated almost entirely by national self-interest, conducted to stem massive, destabilizing influxes of foreign refugees from a bordering nation.
    • Hawks for humanity

       
       
        
          

      Does the human rights industry adore war?

          
       
        January 21, 2014  4:00PM ET 
         
          by          @chmadar
    • The human rights industry does a lot of noble work around the world. And yet many of the field’s most prominent figures and institutions have lately taken to vocally endorsing acts of war. Where does this impulse come from? On what grounds is it justified? And how’s the hawkish stance working out, given a decade of strategic and humanitarian debacles for Washington and its allies?

       

      Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. and one of the country’s most celebrated human rights advocates, certainly doesn’t shrink from military action. She has supported missile strikes on the Syrian government as well as Washington’s participation in the Libya war and has called for strong-arming U.S. allies into sending more soldiers to fight in Afghanistan — all in the name of human rights, of course. Harold Koh, a former dean of Yale Law School, is best known for his scholarly work on human rights law and the War Powers Act — yet he devised the legal rationale for both Obama’s open-ended drone strikes and the war on Libya. And Michael Ignatieff, a former leader of Canada’s Liberal Party and Power’s predecessor as director of Harvard Law’s Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, was an early and enthusiastic supporter of the Iraq War.

       

      It’s not just individuals, though: Institutions are just as likely to chime in. Human Rights Watch didn’t use to dabble in warfare, but that all changed when the group supported Washington’s failed military expedition into Somalia in 1992, followed by the bombardment of Belgrade in 1999 in what was then Yugoslavia. Human Rights Watch didn’t weigh in on the Iraq invasion other than to note that it did not qualify as a humanitarian mission. But by 2012, fatigues were back in style at the group’s Empire State Building suites when the organization’s executive director, Ken Roth, and chief U.S. lobbyist, Tom Malinowski, loudly applauded the NATO campaign in Libya.

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  • Meet the Muslim-American Leaders the FBI and NSA Have Been Spying On - The InterceptThe Intercept on 2014-07-10
  • APNewsBreak: Different attackers in Benghazi? - AP on 2014-07-10
    • APNewsBreak: Different attackers in Benghazi?
    • By DONNA CASSATA and BRADLEY KLAPPER
    • WASHINGTON (AP) — Newly revealed testimony from top military commanders involved in the U.S. response to the Benghazi attacks suggests that the perpetrators of a second, dawn assault on a CIA complex probably were different from those who penetrated the U.S. diplomatic mission the evening before and set it ablaze, killing Ambassador Chris Stevens and another American.

        

      The second attack, which killed two security contractors, showed clear military training, retired Gen. Carter Ham told Congress in closed-door testimony released late Wednesday. It probably was the work of a new team of militants, seizing on reports of violence at the diplomatic mission the night before and hitting the Americans while they were most vulnerable.

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  • German politician wants to start spying on U.S. as revenge for alleged double agent: report on 2014-07-09
    • German politician wants to start spying on U.S. as revenge for alleged double agent: report

       

       
    • BEIJING — German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Monday that if reports that a German intelligence employee spied for the United States are proven true, it would be a clear contradiction of trust between the allies.

      Speaking at a news conference in China, Merkel made her first public comments on the arrest last week of a 31-year-old man suspected of spying for foreign intelligence services.

      German prosecutors say the man is suspected of handing over 218 documents between 2012 and 2014. German media, without naming sources, have reported he was an employee of Germany’s foreign intelligence service who says he sold his services to the U.S.

    • If the allegations are true, it would be for me a clear contradiction as to what I consider to be trusting co-operation between agencies and partners, Merkel said at a news conference in Beijing with the Chinese premier.

      Germany has been stepping up pressure on the United States to clarify the situation.

      The White House offered no public comment, and a U.S. official said the matter did not come up during a phone call Thursday between President Barack Obama and Merkel. The phone call was scheduled beforehand to discuss other matters and Obama was not aware of the spying allegations at the time, according to the official, who insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly discuss the private call.

    3 more annotations...

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    "How to get over anthropology" (thinking about the problems with anthropology, its colonial history, its current uses for power, and looking at some of the known radical alternatives).

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