By: Alan Jones
(1776 Channel) Gulftainer, the UAE container terminal operator that was recently awarded a 35-year lease at strategically-important Port Canaveral, FL, adjacent to a U.S. Navy nuclear submarine base and NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, has allegedly been shipping weapons through the Port of Umm Qasr to two Iranian-backed terrorist militia groups in Iraq, the Badr Brigades and Asaeib Ahl al-Haq (AAH), according to a leak from Iraq General Port Company officials in Basra to Iraqi media.
“AAH is an Iranian-backed Shiite militant group that split from Moqtada al-Sadr’s Jaish al-Mahdi (JAM) in 2006. Since that time, AAH has conducted thousands of lethal explosively formed penetrator (EFP) attacks against U.S. and Iraqi forces, targeted kidnappings of Westerners, rocket and mortar attacks on the U.S. Embassy, the murder of American soldiers, and the assassination of Iraqi officials”. – Institute of the Study of War
The Iraq General Port Company, part of the Iraq Ministry of Transport, is the embattled nation’s port authority.
A former senior official with a coalition embassy in Iraq has confirmed to 1776 Channel that the report, which was published in Arabic by electronic newspaper Al-aalem Al-jadeed on February 10, 2015, charges that Gulftainer is moving weapons to terrorist groups the Badr Brigades and Asaeib Ahl al-Haq (AAH).
Al-aalem Al-jadeed describes itself as an “electronic newspaper free from influence of partisan and sectarian and owners.”
Gulftainer’s 35-year lease with Port Canaveral was negotiated in secret and then approved by the Obama Administration, without a national security review, despite Port Canaveral’s strategic location and it’s extreme proximity to some of the U.S. government’s most sensitive space and defense installations.
SEE RELATED STORY: America’s strategic infrastructure compromised: Did Clinton pay-to-play arrangement hand over port container operations inside national security nexus to wealthy foreign associates?
Gulftainer operates the Iraq Container Terminal inside Iraq’s deep-water Umm Qasr Port, located on the Persian Gulf near Kuwait.
The Badr Brigades and Asaeib Ahl al-Haq (AAH) are backed by Iran’s extremist Islamic regime.
Both Shiite militant groups are listed as terrorist organizations by the UAE government, according to the report.
Privately-owned Gulftainer and its corporate parent the Crescent Group are based in the UAE.
Hadi Al-Ameri leads the Badr Organization, a Shiite political faction in Iraq associated with the Badr Brigades. Al-Ameri is the former Iraq Transport Minister, and likely has deep connections with port officials and shipping companies.
Gulftainer’s shadowy deal with Port Canaveral
As reported earlier by 1776 Channel, Gulftainer’s new GT USA division plans to begin operations next month in Port Canaveral, FL near sensitive U.S. national security installations including a U.S. Navy submarine base and NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.
Gulftainer’s 35-year lease at Port Canaveral, secretly negotiated by Canaveral officials under code name ‘Project Pelican’, was approved without a national security review by Treasury Secretary Jacob ‘Jack’ Lew, a long-time associate of former President Bill Clinton.
It is unclear if Treasury Secretary Lew, the Department of Commerce or other officials within the Obama administration accessed any intelligence reports indicating that Gulftainer was possibly involved in trafficking weapons to Iranian-backed terrorist militias in Iraq. U.S. officials decided that Gulftainer should not be subjected to a national security review before commencing operations at Port Canaveral.
Gulftainer previously attempted to secure a lease at the Port of Jacksonville (JAXPORT), close to Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay and Naval Air Station Jacksonville, but was abruptly rebuffed by Port of Jacksonville officials.
Bill Clinton met last summer with Malik Jafar, a member of the family that owns Gulftainer and who is also a top executive at Crescent, the parent company of Gulftainer.
Although the official business of the meeting between former President Clinton and Jafar concerned the Business Backs Education Foundation, the two men met during the same time period in which Gulftainer and Port Canaveral officials were secretly negotiating Project Pelican. 1776 Channel reported on that meeting and the possibility that Clinton engaged Gulftainer in a pay-to-play arrangement to secure Department of Treasury approval for the deal.
By: Denise Simon
Who Took Moldovos Millions ~ The Crooks or the Kremlin
On the eve of a national election in tiny Moldova last November, $450 million — equal to 10 percent of the Eastern European country’s entire annual gross domestic product — went missing. So far, no one knows where it went.
Much was at stake in the election. Last June, Moldova’s pro-Europe government signed an association agreement with the European Union. Pro-Russia opponents favored partnership with Moscow’s Eurasian Economic Union instead. The incumbents barely won. Moscow signaled its displeasure with the EU agreement by placing an embargo on the import of Moldovan fruits, vegetables and wine.
Earlier this month, approximately 10,000 Moldovans marched in the streets of the capital, Chisinau, shouting, “Down with the thieves!” and “We want the billions back!”
Kroll, the international risk consultancy, had been engaged to do an initial private investigation. The parliament’s speaker posted this from their report: “There appears to have a deliberate plan to gain control of each of the banks and subsequently manipulate transactions to gain access to credit, whilst giving the appearance to the contrary.” Yet, the National Anti-corruption Center of Moldova claimed the report was based on rumors that leaked to local media. Read more here.
An outspoken opponent of Russian President Vladimir Putin was near death Friday from an apparent poisoning just three months after his close political ally was gunned down near the Kremlin, and supporters want him evacuated to Europe or Israel to determine what sickened him.
Vladimir Kara-Murza Jr., who has long been based in Washington, was in a hotel in Moscow when he suddenly lost consciousness May 26 and was hospitalized with what his wife called “symptoms of poisoning.” The 33-year-old is a coordinator for Open Russia, a nongovernmental organization which on the previous day released a documentary film accusing close Putin crony and Chechen strongman Ramzan Kadyrov of human rights abuses including torture and murder.
“Doctors have just confirmed that he was poisoned,” Andrei Bystrov, an opposition activist and friend of the Kara-Murza family, told The Telegraph. “As to what with, they can’t say yet. It could be anything.”
Kara-Murza, a dual Russian-British citizen, was a close associate of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, who was assassinated in February.
“I am deeply concerned about the mysterious illness of Vladimir Kara-Murza, especially given the recent murder of Boris Nemtsov and the number of Putin’s opponents who have been poisoned,” Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., said in a statement.”
Kara-Murza’s family was trying to get him evacuated to Europe or Israel for toxicology tests after hemodialysis failed to stop complete kidney failure. Read more here.
Russia’s recent use of nuclear rhetoric, exercises and operations are deeply troubling. As are concerns regarding its compliance with the Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty.
President Putin’s admission that he considered putting Russia’s nuclear forces on alert while Russia was annexing Crimea is but one example.
Russia has also significantly increased the scale, number and range of provocative flights by nuclear-capable bombers across much of the globe. From Japan to Gibraltar. From Crete to California. And from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea.
Russian officials announced plans to base modern nuclear-capable missile systems in Kaliningrad. And they claim that Russia has the right to deploy nuclear forces to Crimea.
By: William J. Olson and Herbert W. Titus
Right Side News
(Part one of a series)
oral argument about same-sex marriage and then retreated behind a wall of red velvet drapes to confer secretly about whether the U.S. Constitution requires that the U.S. Supreme Court impose same-sex marriage on the entire nation.On April 28, 2015, nine unelected lawyers drawn from three elite law schools (Harvard, Yale, and Columbia) listened to 90-minutes of
Consider for a moment the process by which that decision will be reached. When the Court decided to hear the Obergefell consolidated cases from the Sixth Circuit, that decision was reached in secret. The Justices consult only with their colleagues and their law clerks, also drawn from elite law schools. When a decision in the case is issued, presumably before the end of the current term toward the end of June, the Court will address only those issues argued by parties and the amici curiae that it cares to address. Its opinion will contain only those reasons for its decision that the Court chooses to reveal. The majority decision may be agreed to by as few as five of these nine justices unaccountable to no one but themselves. And then, the Court will expect the American people to set aside their individual and collective judgment and passively abide by whatever decision is reached — based on a doctrine no where found in the U.S. Constitution — “judicial supremacy.”
Although the Supreme Court’s only constitutional responsibility is to resolve “cases” and “controversies” brought before it, the High Court often acts as if it has been entrusted with the raw power to decide for us the most important public policy issues facing the nation. While the Court would have us believe that those decisions are mandated by faithful adherence to the constitutional text, the truth lies elsewhere. In his autobiography, Justice William O. Douglas provided a glimpse behind the curtain as to how the Supreme Court really works. In his autobiography, he explained that Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes had once explained to him: “[a]t the constitutional level where we work, ninety percent of any decision is emotional. The rational part of us supplies the reasons for supporting our predilections.”
We have been working in the judicial vineyard in support of traditional marriage for many years. When one of the cases now being decided by the U.S. Supreme Court (DeBoer v. Snyder) was before the Sixth Circuit, we filed an amicus curiae brief. In the U.S. Supreme Court, we filed another amicus brief. When the Supreme Court decided the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) case (U.S. v. Windsor) in 2013, we filed three briefs, one at the petition stage, one on the merits, and one on the jurisdictional question, and in the Proposition 8 case (Hollingsworth v. Perry), we filed briefs at the petition stage and one on the merits. Even before that, we filed a brief in 2003 in Lawrence v. Texas when the U.S. Supreme Court began down this short road to Same-Sex Marriage while denying that it was doing so. In total, working with groups like U.S. Justice Foundation and Public Advocate of the United States, we have now filed a dozen appellate briefs over the past 15 years addressing the issue of homosexual rights in one context or another.
Although the judicial trend to embrace “homosexual rights” is undeniable, we certainly have not given up hope about the Court’s decision. In fact, it is our belief that the case for same-sex marriage is so pathetically weak, that the Court may understand that it would suffer a crippling embarrassment once the People come to really understand that in no way does the U.S. Constitution command same-sex marriage.
But our role now, while hoping for the best, is to prepare for the worst — and that worst could be terrible indeed. Part of our last Supreme Court brief was published by The American Vision under the name “12 Reasons homosexual marriage will wreck the nation.” If you need additional reasons to give your concentrated attention to this issue in the coming days, you will find those reasons in that article.
The American people need to use the short days remaining before that momentous decision is reached to determine how to respond to an adverse decision. Will they yield to a U.S. Supreme Court that claims the power to override state constitutional and statutory provisions governing domestic relations — an area of law which has historically belonged exclusively to the states. Will they sit back while unelected judges decide for them one of the most important public policy issues of our lifetime? Or will they resist — and, if so, what tools do are available to stand against this judicial tyranny?
If you have not yet signed the “Pledge in Solidarity to Defend Marriage,” supported by Dr. James Dobson, Pastor Rick Scarborough, attorney Matthew Staver, Deacon Keith Fournier, and others, we urge you to do so. That pledge was an excellent first step.
To continue the battle, and to think through these many issues involved, a small group of lawyers and public policy experts experienced in this area have resolved to publish a series of a dozen or more articles to help inform their countrymen. You will not read these articles in the Establishment Media. However, thankfully, a number of publications, blogs, and organizations have agreed to publish this series of articles, as they are written. And, when we see other important articles, such as Robert Reilly’s piece “The New Gnosticism of the Homosexual Movement” we will bring these articles to your attention.
We know that some of you have grown weary of reading articles about homosexual issues. Yet, these issues cannot be ignored. Please look for these articles as they are published. These articles will be structured to inform about the issues which each American must think through to develop his own position, including:
- Does the Fourteenth Amendment Really Mandate Homosexual Marriage?
- Must a Decision of the U.S. Supreme Court be Obeyed as the Supreme Law of the Land?
- Does Romans 13 Require that Christians Yield to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage?
- Why Were Biblical, Moral, and Religious Arguments Ignored By the Parties Arguing to the U.S. Supreme Court?
- Have the Federal Judges Deciding in Favor of a Constitutional Right to Same-Sex Marriage Cases Truly Behaved Judicially?
- What Would Be the Consequences of Mandating Same-Sex Marriage for the Church and Christian Organizations?
- What Would Be the Consequences of Mandating Same-Sex Marriage for the Traditional Family?
- How Should Governors, Attorneys General, State Legislatures, and Other State Officers Respond to a Decision to Mandate Same-Sex Marriage?
- Could Congress Respond to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage by use of the U.S. Constitution’s “Good Behavior” Clause?
- Could Congress Respond to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage by Using its Power to Limit the Jurisdiction of the Federal Courts?
- How Could Congress Respond to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage using its Appropriation Power to Prohibit the Expenditure of Funds to Implement the Decision at the National Level?
- How Should U.S. Citizens Respond to a Decision Mandating Same-Sex Marriage in their various roles as members of grand juries, members of petit juries, taxpayers, and voters?
Although many of us find it increasingly difficult to recognize the nation that we grew up in, we can draw strength from the fact that we still live in a Constitutional Republic, and that our government still operates largely by the “consent of the governed.” And, as Americans, we have the right to determine to withhold our consent from the actions of government officials —if we believe those actions to be lawless. Whatever the U.S. Supreme Court will do, we are each accountable for how we respond. Voltaire counseled “It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.” Therefore, there could be personal consequences to each person who chooses the route of resistance, but ultimately each of us is responsible to God, not just to man.
We invite each of you to consider the arguments made in these articles, and then decide for yourself exactly what you believe, and even more importantly, how you will respond.
Should you want to help support this important work, contributions may be made to the U.S. Justice Foundation.
William J. Olson served in three positions in the Reagan Administration. Herbert W. Titus taught Constitutional Law for 26 years, and concluded his academic career as the Founding Dean of Regent Law School. Together they have filed over 80 briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court, and scores more in lower courts, addressing important public policy issues. They now practice law together at William J. Olson, P.C. They can be reached at [email protected] or twitter.com/Olsonlaw.
Permission is freely granted to publish, copy, reproduce, distribute, or excerpt from this article for any purpose.
The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.
So we want an Islamic state where Islamic law is not just in the books but enforced, and enforced with determination. There is no space and no room for democratic consultation. The Shariah is set and fixed, so why do we need to discuss it anymore? Just implement it! – ISIS Leader Abu Bakar Bashir
We’re definitely not losing in Iraq – Barack Obama
In a very short time the Islamic State has become the most compelling and attractive organisation for Muslim fighters around the world, more so than al-Qaeda ever was – Sunny Hundal, Al Jazeera
This week’s winning essay, Joshuapundit’s – Ramadi Falls To ISIS In A Major Victory – And Why It’s Important, is pretty much about what the title implies it is… an analysis of how and why ISIS won a huge victory in Ramadi, Iraq and what it means.
Here’s a slice:
On Sunday, Islamic State forces captured Ramadi, routing the Iraqi army, many of whom literally fled from the scene, those that could. Over 500 Iraqi soldiers died in the assault, and the debacle came so quickly that substantial pockets of Iraqi troops were trapped there after taking heavy casualties. They aren’t expected to hold out very long and I’ve already received reports that some of them have already been captured and executed by ISIS.
Hundreds of civilians fled along with the Iraqi troops.
ISIS is using some fairly innovative tactics against fixed defensive points like Ramadi. First they seek to control the ingress and egress via outlying areas, to prevent or delay reinforcement and resupply. The next step in Ramadi was to break the defensive line using car and truck bombs, after which ISIS fighters stormed into the breach.
Many Americans may recall hearing the name Ramadi before, and some might recall that quite a few American lives were spent in securing it. Here’s why Ramadi matters.
Look at the map above. Ramadi controls all of the traffic on the Euphrates River. It is only 68 miles (110 Kilometers) from Baghdad and opens the road to that city from the west, just as Fallujah, which ISIS also holds does from the east paving the way for a two-pronged assault. Also, ISIS captured the town of Jubbah in this new offensive, next door to Iraq’s biggest air base at Al-Ansar. That’s where US soldiers, AKA advisers are trying to train Iraqi troops to fight ISIS, which so far hasn’t been particularly successful.
ISIS has also surrounded the oil-producing town of Baiji near Ramadi, where a small Iraqi army force of a few hundred soldiers is trying to hold out. It’s probably only a matter of tie until they’re forced to surrender or are wiped out.
Our Secretary of State John Kerry announced from a news conference in Seoul, South Korea that as far as he was concerned Ramadi was ” a target of opportunity” for ISIS rather than a carefully planed strategic offensive.
“I am convinced that as the forces are redeployed and as the days flow in the weeks ahead that’s going to change, as overall (they) have been driven back … I am absolutely confident in the days ahead that will be reversed.”
Let’s examine that.
Exactly what forces is Secretary Kerry talking about? True, the Iraqi government announced that “major military reinforcements” were being deployed to halt the advance of ISIS. The problem is that between Ramadi, the recent ‘victory’ in Tikrit (about which more later) and an attempted counterattack on Fallujah that went horribly wrong, the Iraqi army has very little strength to ‘deploy’ between ISIS and Baghdad right now. They’re a badly defeated army that is incapable of an offensive against Islamic State right now. The only thing keeping ISIS away from Baghdad is a series of 19 U.S, airstrikes near Ramadi over the past 48 hours.
Much more at the link.
In our non-Council category, the winner was Sultan Knish with De-Islamization Is The Only Way To Fight ISIS submitted by Joshuapundit.
Here are this week’s full results. Only the Right Planet was unable to vote this week, but was not subject to the usual 2/3 vote penalty:
- *First place with 4 votes! – Joshuapundit – Ramadi Falls To ISIS In A Major Victory – And Why It’s Important
- Second place with 1 1/3 votes – The Glittering Eye – They Wrote What They Saw, Memorial Day, 2015
- Third place *t* with 1 vote – The Noisy Room – Di Blasio’s “Contract For Communism”
- Third place *t* with 1 vote – Nice Deb – Ralph Peters: Release of Bin Laden Docs Timed To Divert Attention From Ramadi Embarrassment
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Ask Marion – EPA Supports Monsanto Roundup
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Bookworm Room – Feminist claims that bad consensual sex equals rape victimize women just as surely as the McMartin trials victimized children
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Don Surber – Stephanopoulos made the Clinton Foundation dirty
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Independent Sentinel – Words Matter: Michelle Obama Refers to the US as a Constitutional Democracy at Oberlin
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Razor – Islamic State a Leftist Nightmare
- Fourth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Right Planet – How Democrats ‘Celebrate’ Memorial Day
- Fifth place *t* with 1/3 vote – VA Right! – Bill Janis Unleashes the Flying Monkeys!
- Fifth place *t* with 1/3 vote – Rhymes With Right – Be Kind To Wheelchairs
- *First place with 2 2/3 votes! – Sultan Knish – De-Islamization Is The Only Way To Fight ISIS submitted by Joshuapundit
- Second place with 2 votes – Mark Steyn – Nothing Another 42,000 Airstrikes Can’t Fix submitted by The Noisy Room
- Third place with 1 2/3 votes – Victor Davis Hanson – Disasters At Home And Abroad submitted by Nice Deb
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – The People’s Cube – Stages of the Progressive Agenda submitted by The Right Planet
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – Robert Tracinski/The Federalist – Why Does the Left Kowtow to Islam? submitted by The Watcher
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – NewsBusters – Bob Woodward: Wrong, Bush Did Not Lie Us Into Iraq submitted by The Watcher
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Walter Russell Mead/Via Meadia – Obama, Anti-Semitism and Iran submitted by The Razor and The Glittering Eye
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Quin Hillyer/NRO – At Sea in an Alien Culture, Where ‘Normal’ Is Defined as ‘Deviant’ submitted by Bookworm Room
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Daily Beast – With Help From ISIS, a More Deadly Boko Haram Makes a Comeback submitted by GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – TeaParty.Org – Pamela Geller Plans Muhammad Cartoon Bus Ads for Washington D.C. submitted by VA Right!
See you next week!
Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum and every Tuesday morning, when we reveal the week’s nominees for Weasel of the Week!
And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council and the results are posted on Friday morning.
It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere and you won’t want to miss it… or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.