Thursday, September 29, 2011

Libya: Gaddafi mouthpiece caught 'fleeing dressed as a woman'...Breaking News...

Moussa Ibrahim, the mouthpiece of the Gaddafi regime, was captured last night outside the birthplace of the former dictator, according to commanders of the National Transitional Council's forces.

 Al-Saadi Gaddafi, the son of Col Gaddafi
Wanted by Interpol: Al-Saadi Gaddafi, the son of Col Gaddafi Photo: AP
There were also unconfirmed reports that Ibrahim was dressed as a woman as he attempted to flee Sirte, which has been the scene of heavy fighting for several days.
A commander for the NTC's Zintan brigade said: "Moussa Ibrahim was captured while driving outside Sirte by fighters from Misurata." Ibrahim became a fixture on news bulletins from the first week of the uprising, lecturing the foreign media from a conference room at the Rixos Hotel in Tripoli on the iniquities of Nato and the West.
Like Col Muammar Gaddafi, his whereabouts had been unknown until yesterday.
His capture came as forces loyal to the transitional government seized the airport in Sirte, moving through the partly destroyed buildings tearing down symbols of the Gaddafi era.
Meanwhile, an Interpol arrest warrant was issued for Gaddafi's son Saadi, who escaped to Niger, but the country's prime minister there said he would not be extradited. 

Castro Calls Obama "Stupid"

Thursday, September 29, 2011
So much for the "extended hand" theory.

A few weeks ago, the Castro brothers snubbed their "old friend" Bill Richardson.

And now, they insult President Obama.

From CNN:

Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro lashed out at U.S. President Barack Obama on Thursday for demanding changes on the island in order to improve bilateral relations and referred to him as "stupid."

On Wednesday, Obama told Hispanic journalists that he would be willing to change the country's tough line on Cuba "when we start seeing a serious intention on the part of the Cuban government to provide liberty for its people."

On Thursday, Castro responded with sarcasm in a written essay published in Cuban state media.

"How nice! How intelligent! So much generosity has failed to let him understand that after 50 years of blockade and crimes against our country, they haven't been able to bow our people."

He went on to say many things would change in Cuba, but only thanks to Cubans' own efforts and "despite" the United States. "Perhaps that empire will collapse first," he added.

He also slammed a recent ruling by a U.S. judge against a Cuban agent, but he said it was to be expected.

"Otherwise, the empire would cease to be the empire and Obama would cease to be stupid."

The Religion of Peace®, part 2,445,676

Misinterpreter of Islam arrested for plans to blow up the Pentagon and the Capitol:
A Massachusetts man with a degree in physics was charged Wednesday with plotting to blow up the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol using remote-controlled airplanes filled with explosives.
Rezwan Ferdaus, 26, was arrested in Framingham after undercover federal agents delivered materials he had allegedly requested, including grenades, six machine guns and what he believed was 24 pounds of C-4 explosive. Federal officials said the public was never in danger from the explosives, which it said were always under control and closely monitored.
Wednesday's arrest was the latest of several terrorism cases to spring from federal sting operations. In other cases, reputed would-be terrorists became involved in fictional plots against various targets, such as Dallas skyscrapers or a Chicago nightclub. In this case, though, authorities say Ferdaus planned the scheme.
A federal affidavit says Ferdaus, of Ashland, began planning "jihad" against the U.S. in early 2010 after becoming convinced America was evil through jihadi websites and videos. He contacted a federal informant that December and months later, allegedly began meeting to discuss the plot with undercover federal agents he believed were members of al-Qaida.

Two million Chinese spies

20110923 14:43 pm · 
by Armando F. Mastrapa III
The Diplomat has a fairly extensive article on the expansive threat of China’s intelligence apparatus:
the communist-controlled People’s Republic of China operates the single largest intelligence-gathering apparatus in the world—and its growing appetite for secrets has apparently become insatiable…From economic and military espionage to keeping tabs on exiled dissidents, China’s global spying operations are rapidly expanding….Estimates on the number of spies and agents employed by the communist state vary widely. According to public statements by French author and investigative journalist Roger Faligot, who has written several books about the regime’s security services, there are around two million Chinese working directly or indirectly for China’s intelligence apparatus.
The regimes of Cuba, North Korea, Pakistan, Iran, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe are part of China’s growing international network of support.

Exchange of potatoes by doctors

Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Canadian province of Prince Edward Island (PEI) is interested in making a trade with Cuba: its famous potatoes  by Cuban doctors

The Canadian province of Prince Edward Island (PEI) is interested in making a trade with Cuba: its famous potatoes  (Potatoes) by Cuban doctors to alleviate the problems of system Provincial health.

At least that's what Jason proposed MacGregor, Island Party candidate in provincial elections  October 3. MacGregor made the proposal as part of their campaign.

In statements published today by the newspaper "The Toronto Star," MacGregor said that the exchange of potatoes by Cuban doctors solve the shortage of doctors in rural areas of the province, the smallest in the country.

"The Potatoes are a nutrient that is not grown in their country and many of IPE our farmers have a surplus of potatoes each year. Many of them are thrown back to the fields, "he reasoned MacGregor.

"So instead of wasting all those potatoes, the change could be exported to doctors," he added.

Cuba does away with emblematic Ministry of Sugar

HAVANA, Cuba (AP) — Cuba announced the elimination of its Ministry of Sugar on Thursday in a sign of how far the symbolic crop has fallen since its heyday, when much of the population was mobilized to the countryside at harvest time to help cut cane.
President Raul Castro's government determined that the ministry "currently serves no state function" and will therefore replace it with an entity called Grupo Empresarial de la Agroindustria Azucarera, the Communist Party newspaper Granma reported.
The goal is to "create a business system capable of turning its exports into hard currency to finance its own expenses," Granma said. There was no mention of any private or foreign investment.
Like coffee and tobacco, sugar is a highly emblematic crop on this Caribbean island. Cuba used to be a world leader in sugar, annually producing 6 million to 7 million tons.
Former leader Fidel Castro made the annual harvest a point of revolutionary pride and regularly mobilized brigades of Cubans from government officials and urban office workers to artists and ballet dancers to boost output.
In 1968 he famously announced that Cuba would try to harvest 10 million tons of cane that year, mobilizing labor from nearly the entire workforce. That aim proved overly ambitious, though some 8 million tons were harvested.
Later, the collapse of the Soviet Union deprived Cuba of its main buyer, and sugar has since fallen on hard times. It now trails nickel production and tourism as a source of foreign income, contributing about $600 million a year.
Last year, Cuba reported its lowest harvest since 1905 — 1.1 million tons — and fired its sugar minister. Officials have said this year's harvest is expected to be only slightly higher.
In 2002, the government launched a restructuring of the industry due to low sugar prices. Prices have since recovered, prompting officials to redouble efforts to mechanize the sector and increase efficiency.
Government officials boasted last March of improving per-acre yields during a media tour of sugarcane country in the central province of Matanzas, showing off a revamped sugar mill and modern combines from Brazil that strip the cane as it is picked.
Granma said Thursday that the decision to eliminate the Sugar Ministry was announced at a Cabinet meeting over the weekend. It said 13 provincial companies will oversee the 56 sugar processing plants operating this year — down from 156 in the 1970s.
Juan Tomas Sanchez, who contributes writings on Cuban agriculture to the U.S.-based Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy, said the restructuring should save money on overhead but more must be done to improve efficiency, like overhauling transportation and replotting fields to work better with new machinery.
"It's logical. ... It has a strategic importance," said Sanchez, who also heads a Florida exile group known as the Association of Cuban Settlers. "But it has to be accompanied by a necessary investment of capital."
Granma said the Cabinet ministers also assessed the progress of a national agriculture overhaul begun in 2008 as part of Raul Castro's program to overhaul the economy with some free-market initiatives, including turning over fallow state land to private farmers and cooperatives.
The ministers discussed "shortfalls" in production targets for rice, beef and other agricultural products, Granma said..

IAPA condemns the increasing harassment of dissidents in Cuba...

The Inter American Press (IAPA) today condemned the "recent escalation of repression" against dissidents in Cuba and the violations of freedom of expression, while lamented the lack of solidarity with Latin American governments  Cuban people.

Miami, EFE September 29, 2011
IAPA headquarters in Miami, also denounced the obstacles it hits the foreign press reporting from the island.
All  these issues will be addressed by a special commission for the IAPA General Assembly to be held in Lima (Peru), from 14 to October 18.
On Tuesday they were beaten and insulted by political police Martha Beatriz Roque, leader of the Red  Communicators Cuban Community (RCCC), Arnaldo Ramos Lauzerique, member of that organization, and Berta Soler, the Ladies White said the IAPA.
Roque, expressed policy, reported that, despite  it had been "arrested and beaten many times," never before "Had been so battered. It hurts my shots, but what hurts me most  is the lack of freedom, "he said.
The president of the SIP, Gonzalo Marroquín, stressed that the "lack of respect in Cuba to freedoms of speech, press and assembly are a reflection of a archaic regime that represses and harass critics and the demands of exchange for part of its citizens. "
According to the Cuban Commission Human Rights and National Reconciliation, the repressive actions against independent and opposition media "have grown in often, by registering in the month of September more than 400 arbitrary arrests a few days or hours, "the highest figure arrests in the last ten years.
"This repression is added unfulfilled promises of the regime to allow greater access to internet, showing fear of the authorities to the flow trying to avoid reporting positive effects such as the Arab Spring, "he said Marroquín.
Marroquín, chairman of Guatemalan newspaper Siglo 21, said that the crackdown has also been demonstrated against the foreign press and cited the cases of the new chief by Agence France Press, and Mauricio Vicent, the latter Spanish media correspondent for El Pais and Cadena Ser, who denied doing their work in Cuba.
Also, he said, "calls much attention to the lack of solidarity among Latin American governments with the Cuban people to denounce rights abuses humans. "
"The only solidarity that we have registered so far is that governments will officially provide the regime of Raúl Castro, "he lamented Marroquín.
He added that while the Cuban government  freed journalists imprisoned during the Black Spring (March, 2003), most of whom were exiled to Spain, "now seems that the regime is stepping up its efforts to punish and censor all dissent. "
Since July 2010, after talks Cuban officials with the Catholic Church and the Spanish Government, 22 independent journalists were released, exiles, in their mostly to Spain.
The IAPA is a nonprofit dedicated to defending and promoting press freedom and expression in the Americas. It consists of more than 1,300 publications  of America.

For oil ...

U.S. Congress Repsol pressured not to explore the coast of Cuba

They warn that the oil if it goes ahead could have implications for their business interests in United States

Economy | 29/09/2011 - 13:19 h
Miami (Reuters / EP) .- A group of 34 U.S. congressmen have asked the Spanish oil Repsol YPF to cancel its plans to explore for oil in water Cuba, Warning the company could face legal and commercial risks in the U.S..
Repsol plans to use Chinese-built facilities  for this year exploring oil fields in deep water Cuba in the Gulf of Mexico have run into opposition from neighboring Florida, a bastion of Cuban exiles.
But the oil project Cuba has also sparked calls for the U.S. to cooperate with Havana and avoid a possible ecological accident similar to oil spill BP brought in U.S. waters of the Gulf of Mexico the year past.
In a letter dated September 27 and sent to the president of Repsol, Antonio Brufau, Congressional Republicans and Democrats led by Florida Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen,  warned the Spanish company that runs the risk of damaging their U.S. commercial interests if it goes ahead with plans  in Cuba.
"We respectfully request that Repsol abandon all activities  that proposed oil drilling off the coast of Cuba, "says the letter signed by 34 congressmen, one of which is also Debbie Wasserman Schultz, chair of the Democratic National Committee.
Ros-Lehtinen, Cuban-born, chairs the Committee on Affairs of the House and is a strong critic of the government Castro.
"The Cuban regime is desperately seeking a lifeline decline  economic, and seems to have found a partner Repsol happy, "he Ros-Lehtinen considered in a public statement that accompanies the letter.
"This plan for oil drilling threatens the environment and enriches the Cuban dictatorship," he underlined.
Repsol Guarantees
Last June, in response to Washington's concern about their plans in Cuba, Repsol had made sure that would meet the U.S. environmental requirements and allow Officials inspect the facilities, according to the secretary  U.S. Interior, Ken Salazar.
In his letter, the congressmen argue that since any Cuba requires foreign investment in joint ownership and payments Cuban government prosecutors of President Raul Castro "any Repsol drilling operation carried out in Cuban waters provide direct financial benefit to the Castro dictatorship. "
The letter warns that Repsol plans to drill in Cuba might violate U.S. laws, including a complex network  sanctions that constitute the trade embargo against the island by what the Spanish company and its subsidiaries are exposed to "Criminal and civil liabilities in U.S. courts."
Repsol, in a consortium with Norway Statoil and  India's ONGC unit, plans to use the oil facility Scarabeo 9, construction of China, to drill one or two wells.
The platform, owned by Saipem, a unit of Italian oil giant Eni, is poised to Cuba.
Repsol is expected to pass after the company facilities  Petronas Malaysian state and then to ONGC Videsh, a unit of ONGC, which has also leased blocks in Cuban waters.
Oil experts believe that Cuba could have 20,000 million barrels of oil in the Gulf of Mexico, although the Service U.S. Geological Survey estimates that the reserves are about 5,000 million barrels.
Repsol drilled a hole in Cuban waters in 2004 and found oil but for various reasons, including the U.S. embargo on the island, he has not drilled.