World: Iran Ordering Hezbollah to “destroy” Protesters in Syria and More:
In an interview with Al Arabiya, the source, who wished to remain anonymous, revealed that Ayatollah Khamenei held a covert meeting in Tehran with commanders of the Revolutionary Guards, representatives of the Syrian embassy, members of Hezbollah, and leaders of the Sadr movement. There, he demanded that all operational and logistic forces be applied in order to stamp out the blaze of sedition in Syria and to destroy those who are enemies of God in that country. Experts have construed Ayatollah Khamenei’s comments regarding Syria as a form of religious fatwa, which has a direct effect in spreading terror and insecurity in Syria, increasing Iran’s role in destabilizing Arab countries.
Minutes after 11:00 hours on Sunday, an intense shootout and chase occurred in the town of Guadalupe, Nuevo León.
A group of bodyguards police chief of Guadalupe, noticed the presence of a group of armed men, who intended to carry out an attack against them, yet they were pursued, sparking an intense battle, the explosions alerted the neighbors sector.
Thus the vehicle of criminals was overturned in the HEB store parking lot, located on Avenida Juarez and Lazaro Cardenas, immediately became terror This among the thousands of customers who were in the mall .
The group Line still leaving their posts in the city Chihuahua , Since about 05:00 hours on Sunday, authorities moved to the streets 20 and Toribio Ortega, opposite the entrance to the CBTIS 122, found the remains of a young man who had been quartered.
The scene was impressive because it was apparently a minor cut up, some versions say he was a student of the school mentioned above.
Agents began conducting the first interviews, also cut up the body was left a narcomensaje saying, ” That happens to the traitors who support the CHAPO, ALL Mugroso. ATTE. ______ (LA ONLINE ) ”
In a statement issued by the Ministry of Public Security, announced that elements of the Federal Police, made the catch Zarco José Efraín Cárdenas, alias Villa , Who was the leader in the state of Morelos of the criminal group of Barbie, the detainee took place after a halt to Miguel Angel Cedillo González, alias El Pica.
Then the official gazette:
The federal Public Security Secretariat reported that the May 6 elements of the Federal Police arrested Zarco José Efraín Cárdenas and José Villalobos, aka The Villa leader of the criminal organization that operated Edgar Valdez Villarreal, aka La Barbie in the state of Morelos with Jaime Ramírez Huerta, aka Hookah.
The arrest took place in Mexico City, where federal police gave up research to lines generated from the arrest of Miguel Angel Cedillo González, alias El Pica, which occurred on April 27, 2011 by the Federal Police.
Around 10:30 am Saturday, authorities were present in the Gulf of Mexico Street, north of the colony Mithras, in the municipality of Monterrey, Nuevo León, and receiving report an abandoned van.
A few meters from the busy Avenida Fidel Velazquez, was found a Ford Lobo, within it, in the back seat, a man was found bound and with clear signs of having been tortured and brutally executed.
The body had the shot, also the whole face was covered with masking tape, reports Officers inside the vehicle say they found no shell casings, so it is presumed he was killed elsewhere.
Last night was a new situation of violence in the city of Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, and that an armed group that was traveling in several vehicles attacked elements of the Municipal Police, who were at a gas station on Lake Chapala and Monterrey Avenue.
Reports reveal that the attack caused large damage to a store Super City, a patrol was also burned as fragmentation grenades, also damaged several vehicles.
Reports indicate that an item was dead, and at least three people were injured.
During the afternoon today in Nuevo Laredo remained alert as authorities reported several clashes in different parts of the city. The Mexican Army and Navy Armada de Mexico, clashed with a group of assassins.
Then they hanged or beheaded the rest of his family. Yet another example of Muslim on Buddhist violence in a country where Muslims are only a small minority.
Live Leak - More than than 4000 people from police and teachers to monks and children have been killed in the past 7 years by Muslims in southern Thailand, but hardly a word in the mainstream media. In Southern Thailand Muslim gunmen continue killing and threatening innocent citizens. The Muslim insurgents have threatened to kill 20 teachers and have distributed fliers that said, “WANTED: 20 Deaths of Buddhist teachers.” Muslim terrorists object to the education system which teaches Buddhist culture that is not acceptable in Islam. The attacks are intended to force Buddhists to leave the region because Muslims want to create an independent Muslim nation in the three southern provinces.
“The linch pin to his foreign policy in Afghanistan and Pakistan has crumbled, and unless we find a complete reversal by the Pakistanis, then any effort that we have to succeed in Afghanistan is a very uphill effort,” Maginnis laments.
How many have to die before the West will fight and defeat jihad? Seriously? How many millions have to be slaughtered? This is ongoing jihad. And what is so galling in all these reports from Egypt to Nigeria, the Phillipines and the Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Lebanon, Darfur, Yemen, etc is the news reports of clashes. These are not clashes – the non-Muslims are the victims of these jihadi attacks. Just like with Israel reportage, if you defeend your life, it becomes a “clash.” No.
At least 16 people have been killed in an attack on a predominantly Christian village in northern Nigeria.
Police said late on Friday that unidentified assailants had also burnt a number of houses in the village in Bauchi state, near Tafawa Balewa.
Bauchi is in Nigeria’s middle belt, where the predominantly Muslim north meets the mainly Christian south.
There are long-standing tensions in the area rooted in power struggles and land disputes, correspondents say.
This has caused violence in the past between indigenous Christian or animist groups, and Muslim settlers from the North.
Hundreds have died in clashes in Nigeria following national elections last month in which Goodluck Jonathan, a southern Christian, won the presidential poll against a Muslim, Muhammadu Buhari.
The worst of the violence was in Bauchi and Kaduna states.
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(AP) South Korean President Lee Myung-bak says he’s prepared to host North Korean leader Kim Jong Il at a summit in South Korea, if he signals he’s ready to give up nuclear weapons.Lee told reporters Monday he was "fully prepared" to invite Kim to the already-planned conference in March, if "North …
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(AP) Colombia is extraditing to Venezuela a man the White House has called an important international drug kingpin.Walid Makled is accused of drug trafficking and murder in Venezuela.His extradition by Colombia has generated a great deal of attention because Makled says some close associates of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez were his …
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(AP) An official in the West African nation of Togo says 36 people are dead after a boating disaster on a lake.Col. Damehane Yark, commander of the national police force, confirmed the toll Monday to The Associated Press.Togo’s Nana FM radio station reported that most of the victims were students who …
FBI, DOJ, DHS assure Muslim leaders they’re exempt from scrutiny
Detroit — Arab-American and Muslim leaders said they received assurances today from federal law enforcement officials that added security in the wake of the death of Osama bin Laden wouldn’t result in profiling.The meeting at the Star International Academy between the community leaders and representatives from the FBI, U.S. Attorney’s Office and Department of Homeland Security was scheduled before bin Laden’s death, but concerns emerged about possible retaliation or difficulties if the federal threat level is elevated.
“All of the federal agencies made it loud and clear that hate crimes and a backlash would not be tolerated, and that in no form or shape would there be racial profiling,” said Imad Hamad, the regional director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee.
About 75 people attended the private meeting BRIDGES —Building Respect In Diverse Groups to Enhance Sensitivity — that ended at 1:30 p.m. Dearborn Police were given a standing ovation for their handling of the brief fracas that broke out during Friday’s protest by Florida Pastor Terry Jones in Dearborn.
Also today, the head of the local office of the [Hamas-linked] Council on American-Islamic Relations said the Department of Homeland Security informed his office that it will open a formal investigation into complaints by local Muslims that they have been questioned by border control officers about their religious practices while returning to the United States from Canada at land crossings….
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(AP) Bosnia is facing one of its worst political crises since war ended in 1995, the country’s international administrator warned the United Nations on Monday.The comments from Valentin Inzko came as Bosnia’s Serbs have scheduled a mid-June referendum to highlight the widespread Bosnian Serb rejection of the country’s federal institutions, especially …
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(AP) A Canadian man who blogged about his battle with colorectal cancer left a final post before he died last week, a message that drew three million visitors.A day after Derek Miller, 41, died in Burnaby, British Columbia, of complications from cancer, a message entitled "The Last Post" was posted on …
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(AP) Malaysian police say they have arrested a Singaporean businessman suspected of channeling funds to southern Philippine militants.National police Chief Ismail Omar says Abdul Majid Kunji Mohamad was arrested under a law that allows indefinite detention without trial of people regarded as security threats.Ismail said Monday the man is believed to …
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(AP) Hundreds of women demonstrated in Uganda’s capital on Monday over high food prices and brutal tactics employed by police during recent political rallies.The estimated 200 women carried empty saucepans and cooking utensils while walking through Kampala.The women, who all wore white, carried posters that read: "Stop police brutality" and "For …
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(AP) The United Nations says Sudan’s north and south have agreed to withdraw all "unauthorized forces" from a contested border hotspot, where fears are rising that a new conflict could ignite as Southern Sudan prepares to become the world’s newest country.The northern and southern governments agreed to deploy a joint north-south …
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(AP) A ship carrying up to 600 migrants trying to flee Libya has sunk just off the coast of the North African country, the U.N. Refugee Agency said Monday, citing witness accounts.The agency is trying to confirm what happened to the passengers when the vessel broke apart at sea shortly after …
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(AP) A Serbian court has approved a controversial plea bargain that will allow the Balkans’ most popular folk singer to avoid a heavy prison sentence for massive embezzlement.Belgrade’s High Court ruled Monday that Svetlana Raznatovic known as Ceca will spend one year under house arrest in exchange for a euro1.5-million ($2.2-million) …
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(AP) An Austrian court on Monday approved the extradition of former Croatian Prime Minister Ivo Sanader to his homeland, where he is suspected of corruption while in office, but his lawyer immediately announced an appeal.Austrian police detained Sanader on Dec. 10 after Croatian authorities issued an international arrest warrant for him, …
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(AP) India’s top court Monday suspended a ruling that divided between Hindus and Muslims a holy site in northern India that had been the cause of deadly riots.Lawyers representing Hindu and Muslim groups said the Supreme Court suspended a September ruling by a lower court that the site of the Babri …
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(AP) Thousands of ethnic Hmong have returned to their homes after Vietnamese security forces broke up more than a week of religious activities near the northwestern border with Laos, a church official said Monday.Nguyen Huu Mac, head of the northern Evangelical Church of Vietnam, said he has been in regular contact …
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(AP) The nephew of President Anwar Sadat’s assassin and son of a wanted Islamist returned to Egypt for the first time in two decades on Saturday after Egypt’s new leaders removed him and others from an entry blacklist in an apparent shift in policy.Khaled el-Islambouli returned with his wife, two children …
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(AP) Hundreds of Egyptians, many of them Coptic Christians, demonstrated on Monday in Cairo to protest Muslim-Christian clashes that left 12 dead and a church burned.Demonstrators, who numbered about 1,000 by midday, said they feared that some in Egypt seek to create an Islamic state that would marginalize the Christians, who …
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So, what the Hell was this guy doing as a tourist in a war zone in the first place? Must be a liberal Muslim-sympathizer. I guess we can expect the beheading video to be released next.
Live Leak - A Toronto man held in captivity by the Taliban says in a video released Sunday by the militant group that he went to Afghanistan to visit historical sites. Colin Rutherford, 26, says he was interested in “history and historical sites, old buildings, shrines” when he flew to Kabul.
He spent a few days in the capital, then headed to the eastern city of Ghazni, where he was captured by militants the day after arriving, he says in the video.
In an email accompanying the release of the video, the Taliban threatened to put Rutherford on trial for espionage if Canada does not meet its demands.Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid did not list the demands, saying the Canadian government was aware of what the Taliban want.
The footage released Sunday on a Taliban website shows a young man with dark hair and a moustache, wearing a winter jacket and sitting cross-legged with his hands on his knees. He gives brief answers to a series of questions put to him in accented English by a man off-screen, and shifts his solemn gaze from the man to the floor between them and the camera.
In February, the Taliban maintained they took Rutherford because he was working as a spy to track down their fighters. They claimed to have confiscated documents from him proving he was a secret agent.
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Forget the Navy SEALS, if we want to capture al-Qaeda’s #2 man, Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri, we can just send in a cute little boy
Well, well, well. Apparently, Osama bin Laden’s successor, Ayman al-Zawahiri, is a paedophile! Par for the course with those holier-than-thou Muslim men, where sex with young children is not only allowed in the Qur’an, it is encouraged.
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Al Qaeda just announced that it’s open season on Christians in the Muslim world. I don’t think they had to tell us that, it always has been.
The Blaze - Muslim mobs set two Cairo churches on fire overnight during sectarian clashes that left 12 dead and more than 200 injured. The deepening religious violence in military-ruled Egypt exacerbated an already chaotic and lawless transition to democracy.
Mobs of ultraconservative Muslims attacked the St. Menas church in the Cairo slum of Imbaba late Saturday following rumors that a Christian woman married to a Muslim man had been abducted. Local residents said a separate mob of youths armed with knives and machetes attacked the Virgin Mary church several blocks away with firebombs.
“People were scared to come near them,” said local resident Adel Mohammed, 29, who lives near the Virgin Mary Church. “They looked scary. They threw their firebombs at the church and set parts of it ablaze.”
Interfaith relationships are taboo in Egypt, where the Muslim majority and sizable Christian minority are both largely conservative. Such relationships are often the source of deadly clashes between the faiths.
In the months that followed the toppling of Mubarak on Feb. 11, there has been a sharp rise in sectarian tensions, fueled in part by newly active ultraconservative Muslim movement, known as the Salafis.
The once quiescent Salafis have become more assertive post-revolution in trying to spread their ultraconservative version of an Islamic way of life. In particular, they have focused their wrath on Egypt’s Christians, who make up 10 percent of the country’s 80 million people.
On Friday, a few hundred Salafis marched through Cairo celebrating al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden and condemning the U.S. operation that killed him.
Critics say Egyptian military authorities have done too little to stem the religious violence. But authorities arrested 190 people, immediately, sending them to military prosecutions and threatening the maximum penalty against anyone attacking houses of worship. It was the military’s toughest response yet to a series of violent clashes between the two religious groups.
The clashes were set off Saturday around sundown when word spread around the low-income neighborhood of Imbaba that a Christian woman who married a Muslim was abducted and is being kept in the church against her will.
The report, which was never confirmed by local religious figures, sent a large mob of Muslims toward the St. Menas church. Christians created a human barricade around the church and clashes erupted. Gunfire sounded across the neighborhood, and witnesses said people on rooftops nearby were firing into the crowd.
Residents say Christians were hiding inside. Muslims were chanting: “With our blood and soul, we defend you Islam.” Later the same night, witnesses said a separate Muslim mob, mostly youths armed with machetes and knives, moved to the Virgin Mary church nearby and also set it on fire.
The new tensions erupted after a year of Salafi protests against the alleged abduction by the Coptic Church of a priest’s wife, Camilla Shehata. The Salafis claim, she converted to Islam to escape an unhappy marriage — a phenomenon they maintain is common.
If a Christian woman marries a Muslim, she is expelled from the church. A Muslim woman is not allowed to marry a Christian man, according to state law. Because divorce is banned under the Coptic Church, with rare exceptions, some Christian women resort to conversion to Islam or another Christian denomination to get out of a marriage.
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It’s easy to spot the kids who come from bleeding heart leftie homes – little PC pussies.
H/T The Blaze
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All we want to know is the name of the Muslim passengers on board. No need to check anyone else.
Boarding Area - This morning Delta Air Lines Flight 1706, a Boeing 737-832 (73H), carrying 137 passengers, and 6 crew, departed Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW)’s gate A23 at 8:37am, three minutes early, for its 4 hour 46 minute flight to San Diego(SAN), however somewhere over middle America, a Flight Attendant found a note that was interpreted as a bomb threat in one of the airplane’s two rear lavatories.
Upon finding the note, the flight attendant brought the threat to the attention of the Captain, who in turn was in contact with the airline directly, and flight 1706 was diverted to Albuquerque International Sunport Airport (ABQ). Upon arrival at ABQ, at 9:54am MDT Delta Flight 1706 taxied to a remote area of the airport where the aircraft was met by Airport Police, Federal Law Enforcement, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and the Airport Fire Department, at which time all the passengers and bags were removed from the aircraft.
Once all the passengers and baggage were removed from the aircraft, the bags were lined up to be checked fro explosives, while passenger and crew of Delta Flight 1706 were taken off the taxiway to be interviewed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation(FBI).
At this time law enforcement have cleared Delta Flight 1706′s aircraft of any explosives threat and ruled the threat to be a hoax, however passengers are continuing to be interviewed by the FBI.
Below is a photo from Sean C. Watkins, a passenger on Delta Flight 1706, of passengers watching law enforcement walk down a line of passenger baggage being screened for explosives. (this photo is copyrighted to Mr. Watkins, it is not in the public domain and it is used with permission)
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Ragheads ranting again in London, pretty much a weekly event now. Think it won’t happen in America, too? The group that organizes these protests is also behind the Sharia4America movement.
Notice the big turnout on a Friday. That’s because these Muslims and most of their followers live on welfare benefits from the State.
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Why does the media give airtime to a Hamas-affiliated radical Islamic organization like CAIR? Don’t they realize that the reason for America’s increasing hatred of Muslims is directly related to pondscum like CAIR?
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As Barack Obama steps up his push to ‘negotiate’ a deal with the Taliban, Afghan women and girls are losing the tiny bit of freedom they’ve gained from our blood, sweat, and billions invested there.
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As NATO ‘ally’ Turkey turns into an Islamic state, more and more journalists are finding themselves in jail
The move away from secularism in Turkey is being aided in large part by an Islamist living in exile right here Pennsylvania, Fetulleh Gullen.
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More from Pat: pat-condell-video-corner
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Hamas-affiliated CAIR (Council on American Islamic Relations) failed to strong-arm Everett Community College into canceling a recent talk by Raymond Ibrahim, a writer of Egyptian heritage whom they portray as holding ‘racist’ views.
Seattle Times - Everett officials say they’re not planning to make any changes to the program, which features Raymond Ibrahim, associate director of the Middle East Forum. Ibrahim’s appearance is “consistent with the belief that students be exposed to a variety of views,” said John Olson, Everett vice president for college advancement.
But the Washington chapter of the Terrorist Front Group Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and several local religious leaders said they fear Ibrahim’s views could incite violence against Muslims.
“Everything Mr. Ibrahim has done in his career seems to have the single-minded focus of portraying Islam and Muslims as evil, deceitful, conspiring to take over the world, and … feeding the perpetual questioning and mistrust of their presence in the West,” reads the letter by Arsalan Bukhari, executive director of the Washington chapter of CAIR.
Ibrahim responds, “Always be leery of those who fear and would stifle free speech — who would stifle the open exchange of knowledge — such as that unindicted co-conspirator, CAIR.” To which Bukhari reponds, (CAIR) supports freedom of speech, but Ibrahim’s appearance is a case of “privileged speech” because he was invited by the school, promoted as an expert and is being given a platform to speak.
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Don’t let the bin-Laden assassination fool you, Barack Obama has done more to HELP al-Qaeda in recent weeks than bin Laden ever did
The killing of bin-Laden was done purely for re-election purposes. But Obama more than made up for that by setting up al-Qaeda financially for years to come. One of the first things the U.S.-led coalition did when it invade d Libya in March was to help the radical Islamist led rebels capture the oil fields. Thanks to Obama, they will no longer need to depend on rich Saudi sheiks to fund jihad because they now control oil fields capable of generating $34 billion worth of black gold a year.
Human Events – (H/T Rob E) - Within a week of the takeover of the oil by the rebels, and while the White House was still promising to send the CIA to Libya to “figure out” who the rebels really were, the U.S. and NATO had brokered a sweet deal for them to control Libya’s oil and sell it to Qatar. The rebels sent the first shipment, worth about $100 million, by tanker in the beginning of April.
It’s a windfall that the al-Qaeda infiltrated rebels, led by a former Gitmo detainee and two former jihadistsfresh from battle in Afghanistan, couldn’t possibly have achieved without the help of US airpower in Libya . With billions they’ll eventually reap in profits from the oil each year, they could easily wage a multi-front jihad and have plenty of money left over for a bio weapon to wipe out the entire American East Coast. The thought of what these jihadist thugs could do inside our borders with the kind of money Obama and NATO helped secure for them ought to terrify Americans.
There is little doubt that al-Qaeda and like-minded groups are behind the Libyan efforts. Regional leaders tried to warn us that the rebel movement in Libya was al Qaeda-backed and affiliated, but the American media largely brushed that off. This week, as the world sat glued to the TV, taking in the bin Laden assassination story, the Christian Science Monitor reported that al-Qaeda fighters are streaming into Libya to help the Obama-backed rebels. Despite this, the rebels say they are expecting to receive $2 to $3 billion in aid from the U.S., France, and Italy in the coming week.
According to UPI, bin Laden himself was so ecstatic about these developments that he became almost sloppy in the weeks before his death, breaking cover and traveling between Afghanistan and Pakistan in an effort to “merge al-Qaeda’s war against the West with the wave of uprisings across the Arab world.”
The pattern by the Obama administration is almost eerie. First, al Qaeda-led rebels capture part of a country and declare it an Islamic emirate or caliphate. Then Obama backs the overthrow of that country’s embattled leader, declaring that he must go in the interest of democracy, even when that goes against U.S. interests in the War on Terror.
That’s exactly what happened in Libya. It’s what happened again in Yemen. Within a week of al-Qaeda rebels seizing a
province there earlier this year, Obama stunned foreign policy experts by suddenly calling for the ouster of Yemen’s president Ali Abdullah Saleh, a critical ally of ours in the war on terror.
Many of the recent attempted attacks on America were planned in Yemen, which has become a base of operation for al-Qaeda. So it was baffling to many that Saleh was thrown under the jihadist bus by Obama even though his help has been critical to the U.S. in tracking and apprehending the al-Qaeda andjihadist
plotters attempting to overthrow Yemen. This raises a question. If Obama isn’t for Saleh in Yemen, exactly who is he for? The options are pretty awful—unless you are partial to radical jihadist thugs.
The whole pattern is similar to what Obama did in Egypt, where he backed a democracy movement that quickly proved to be a poorly disguised vehicle for those sympathetic to the Muslim Brotherhood to take over the country.
Which brings us back to bin Laden. His assassination is the one fact that doesn’t seem to fit Obama’s otherwise perfect pattern of aiding jihadist thugs in the overthrow of relatively stable countries. That’s because taking out bin Laden wasn’t about hurting al-Qaeda. It was about helping Obama get reelected. So far though, al-Qaeda seems to have come out way ahead in the deal.
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The new National Socialists (NAZIS) of Germany condemn Angela Merkel for her joy at Osama bin Laden’s assassination
A Hamburg judge has filed a criminal complaint against Chancellor Angela Merkel for “endorsing a crime” after she stated she was “glad” that Osama bin Laden was killed by US forces. Meanwhile a new poll reveals that a majority of Germans do not see the terrorist’s death as a reason to celebrate.
Let’s see how they change their tune after a Muslim terrorist attack on Germany.
SPIEGEL (H/T Susan K) - Schadenfreude, the enjoyment of others’ suffering, may be a famously German concept, but it is apparently not a feeling that many Germans aspire to. The political and public fallout following Chancellor Angela Merkel’s statement on Monday that she was “glad” Osama bin Laden had been killed was among the most hotly debated topics in the German media this week.
Politicians, including those within her own center-right coalition, said that no death was cause for celebration, and reproved the remark as un-Christian and vengeful.
But Hamburg judge Heinz Uthmann went even further. He alleges that the chancellor’s statement was nothing short of illegal, and filed a criminal complaint against Merkel midweek, the dailyHamburger Morgenpost reported Friday.
“I am a law-abiding citizen and as a judge, sworn to justice and law,” the 54-year-old told the paper, adding that Merkel’s words were “tacky and undignified.”
In his two-page document, Uthmann, a judge for 21 years, cites section 140 of the German Criminal Code, which forbids the “rewarding and approving” of crimes. In this case, Merkel endorsed a “homicide,” Uthmann claimed. The violation is punishable by up to three years’ imprisonment or a fine.
“For the daughter of a Christian pastor, the comment is astonishing and at odds with the values of human dignity, charity and the rule of law,” Uthmann told the newspaper.
While the judge’s reaction may seem extreme, his sentiments are apparently shared by 64 percent of the German population. That was the proportion of Germans who said bin Laden’s death was “no reason to rejoice” in a poll published by broadcaster ARD on Friday.
Among respondents who said they identified with Germany’s three main opposition parties, an even greater proportion were disgusted with the jubilation over the al-Qaida leader’s death. Their views mirror recent comments made by opposition politicians on the issue.
But even among supporters of Merkel’s conservative Christian Democrats (CDU) and their junior coalition partners, the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP), barely half of those polled said they empathized with Merkel’s view.
The chancellor has declined to withdraw her statement, but the outcry prompted government press spokesman Steffen Seibert to defend her on Thursday. “The reason for her happiness was the thought that this man would no longer pose any danger,” he said, adding that her statement had been reported out of context.
Seibert added that Merkel “appreciates that those who heard only this sentence … might have found the combination of the words ‘death’ and ‘glad’ in one phrase to be inappropriate.”
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The man who created the Muslim Chaplain Program in America is sitting in jail for 23 years on terrorism charges.
But the Muslim Chaplain Program is still in operation at the Department of Defense and the Federal Bureau of Prisons and is operated by Muslim Brotherhood Front Group, the Islamic Society of North America.
Any wonder why so many American Muslim homegrown terrorists are former prison inmates who were converted to Islam in jail?
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The Mexican people want their country back. That’s the message they plan to send on May 8th to Mexico’s government, as well as to the narco thugs who have held their country hostage for years, through widespread planned marches and rallies.
The national sentiment of Hasta la madre! [“We won’t take it anymore!”] has been slowly and steadily building, but was catalyzed by the death of a well-known Mexican poet’s son. Javier Sicilia, a journalist-turned-activist, lost his son to the drug war in late March 2011, and as a result has galvanized a movement of Mexicans, both domestically and in the United States, to protest the conduct of the drug war.
Sicilia says one of the goals of this mobilization is to return dignity to the names of the dead who “in the eyes of the State have been counted as collateral damage or statistics.” He also calls for a rebuilding of Mexico’s social fabric, and a re-founding of the country through a social pact formed between the Mexican people.
But can such a movement, with decidedly lofty goals and ideals, truly succeed in Mexico’s current environment?
There are several factors working in the protestors’ favor. Historically, this is the first time that so many Mexicans have come together to publicly call for an end to President Felipe Calderón’s drug war and associated violence. There are currently 38 marches and rallies taking place on May 8th across Mexico, and some are also planned in the United States.
The El Paso Times reported that Mexican journalist and asylum seeker Emilio Gutierrez, along with a group of supporters, is encouraging people in the El Paso area to join a rally in Mesilla, Texas in support of the national marches in Mexico.
The Mexican people have already warmed up for this day, too. Media reports said that on April 7th, up to 35,000 people in 21 Mexican states and 26 cities took to the streets to protest corruption, push for changes in the government’s fight organized crime, and lament the deaths of thousands of innocents across Mexico. These people were inspired by an open letter penned by Sicilia shortly after the death of his son.
I’ve had the chance to speak with people who are passionately answering Sicilia’s call. Some are looking at May 8th as just a beginning, a precursor to a process that will likely take years to bear fruit. Others have used the terms “revolution” and “civil resistance,” invoking recent events in Egypt and historical figures like Gandhi and Martin Luther King to draw parallels with this phenomenon.
Unfortunately, as well-intentioned as these protestors may be, it sounds like they’re forgetting about the number one cause of the drug war that is ruining millions of Mexican lives—American drug users.
Sicilia outlined several goals for this movement in a long open letter, but they’re all domestically oriented. Many of them are vague and idealistic, like the forming of a “social pact” and “rebuilding Mexico’s social fabric.” Others are practical, like eliminating corruption from the ranks of politicians, soldiers, and police. Some are outright unrealistic, like completely legalizing all drug trafficking in Mexico.
The anti-drug war movement seems to be using Sicilia’s letter as a manifesto of sorts, but it still comes across as unfocused. Are they protesting against the Mexican government, the cartels themselves, or US drug policies? Perhaps it’s all of the above, but they don’t appear to have a solid road map for how to achieve their ultimate goal—the end of the drug war.
Most importantly, they’re leaving out the biggest problem—the insatiable American demand for drugs. Millions of drug users in the United States couldn’t care less that their habit results in the loss of thousands of Mexican lives every year. The U.S. media is providing better-than-expected coverage of these marches. But even if millions of Americans learned about the rallies and their goals, most probably wouldn’t flinch, let alone change their daily routines.
The comparisons to Egypt and Gandhi and Martin Luther King also aren’t quite accurate. The protests and civil resistance in those cases were for political reasons dealing with purely domestic issues. If the anti-drug war movement only had to deal with the Mexican government, then they’d really be on to something. But no matter how many people take to the streets in Mexico—or even in the United States—to demand an end to the bloodshed and corruption, no change in Mexican strategy or policy or social outlook is going to affect the American desire for illegal drugs.
There is no question that the Mexican people are displaying an incredible amount of courage, fortitude, and determination by taking steps to get their country back. There are many changes that the anti-drug war movement is demanding that are necessary to have a positive impact on the drug war. Regardless of the U.S. role in the drug war, the Mexican people would no doubt benefit from less corruption, elected officials who weren’t working hand-in-hand with narco thugs, and diminishing national fear as a result of communities working together.
Those changes will take time, patience, and hard work. But the anti-drug war movement can’t succeed by confining its goals to Mexico alone. Without a component to galvanize the American people or the U.S. government to dramatically reduce drug demand or revamp U.S. drug policies, it’s unlikely the drug war and bloodshed will end through Mexican protest alone.
Javier Sicilia, the poet who has become an unlikely hero in a movement calling for an end to Mexico’s drug war, asked for five minutes of silence at the end of a Sunday rally in this city’s giant central plaza.
The silence was to honor the dead — more than 35,000 since President Felipe Calderón sent the military to fight drug cartels four and a half years ago.
Among the dead is Mr. Sicilia’s son, killed seven weeks ago in the colonial city of Cuernavaca.
Since then, Mr. Sicilia’s grief and fury have resonated with many Mexicans who believe they have become the ignored victims in a battle between organized crime on one side and soldiers and the police on the other.
At the rally Sunday, Mr. Sicilia called on the government to change its strategy in the war, calling first for the resignation of Genaro García Luna, the director of public security and an architect of Mr. Calderón’s battle against the drug gangs. “We want to hear a message from the president of the republic that with this resignation, yes, he has heard us,” Mr. Sicilia said.
The city police estimated that as many as 150,000 people took part in the march, although the number of people who finally gathered in the plaza late Sunday afternoon to hear Mr. Sicilia and other grieving families speak, seemed considerably smaller.
Since Mr. Calderón began his crackdown, sending soldiers to patrol large parts of northern and western Mexico, the government has argued that the dead are almost all members of rival gangs killed as drug cartels fight over territory and smuggling routes to the United States.
But the violence continues to increase and the toll of innocent victims has mounted as drug gangs have become more ruthless. Authorities have failed to check the killings because of a what even the government admits is a combination of corruption, fear and inefficiency.
New horrors have been revealed in the past few weeks. Mr. Sicilia’s son was found dead along with six other people, supposedly killed by a drug cartel. Then, soldiers found mass graves in the northeastern state of Tamaulipas that held 183 bodies, many believed to be people kidnapped from public buses on their way to the border. Meanwhile, the authorities have pulled 168 other bodies from pits in the central state of Durango.
The government has remained on the defensive, presenting the choice as one between either backing down and letting organized crime take hold, or continuing the fight along the same lines.
On Thursday, as Mr. Sicilia set on his march from his hometown, Cuernavaca, Mr. Calderón insisted that he would not pull the military from the streets, as many Mexicans have asked. “We are right, we have the law and we have the strength, we will win,” he said.
LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE REBUBLIC AND THE MEDIA
I raise my voice and shout from the rooftops so that you will know we are going through the worst days of our lives. I can not believe what my eyes see, what my ears hear, what my mouth says.
I can not believe what my hands no longer do, the hatred, resentment and helplessness that is filling my mind. Especially the impotence I feel unable to do anything in the face of the fear us Reynosenses (citizens of Reynosa, Tamaulipas) live with daily, as we watch the city’s economy in tatters, the youth hidden indoors avoiding any life outside of the home, the empty streets after nine at night, restaurants and bars closed, all thanks to the wave of insecurity in which we live.
I invite you and your family, Sr. Presidente, to spend a few days in Reynosa, to stay at a home in any neighborhood that you choose: the colonias San Valentin, Puerta del Sol, Vista Hermosa, Las Fuentes, López Portillo, Centro, Altamira or any other so that during the dawn you can listen for more than forty minutes as soldiers and gunmen fight for their lives: the gunfire, bazooka and grenade explosions.
I invite you, Sir, to stroll through the city, for your eyes to witness what happens at traffic lights: criminals at gunpoint carjack, kidnap, rob and assault the people in their vehicles, take our women ……..as the surrounding cars flee, unable to help, the people gripped by fear.
I invite your wife, Sra. Margarita, to attend our next children’s party and listen to the “pleasant” chats of ten frightened mothers participating in each table. The central issue is the lack of security, how so & so’s aunt was taken down from her car and beaten at noon in the parking lot of a supermarket, or the unending gunfire and eternal minutes spent listening to the latest shootout, or how you ran to pick up your children after receiving the news that banners are hanging from the bridges saying that “5 children from different schools in the city will be taken hostage”, or describing the daily extortion calls you receive by telephone from the person who kidnapped your neighbor.
I invite your children, Sr. Presidente, to experience a shooting like the one at the school located on Blvd. Del Maestro. I get a lump in my throat and feelings of anger and powerlessness when I think of the anguish the children endured.
I heard from my 6 year old daughter of how the teacher locked the classroom door and covered its window with paper, how the children crawled on their stomachs quickly and quietly to hide in the classroom closet, how they sat all squashed and covering their eyes with their hands. My daughter said, “we were was forbidden to push, make noise or uncover our eyes, two of my classmates got very nervous and cried a lot, my teacher hugged them and put them under the desk.”
I invite you, Sr. Presidente, to any house and see how for the past year children, ages 5, 6, 7 and 8, run every morning to sleep in the bed with their parents, saying “Mom, Dad, are those bullets I hear?”… I find it unfair that our children do not have pleasant dreams, live in fear and never talk about games.
I invite you, Sr. Presidente Calderon and your wife, to accompany my wife and I as we run from the parking lot to our workplace at 9:00 in the morning because there are soldiers and criminals exchanging gunfire less than 50 meters away.
I invite you, Sr. Presidente, to my city to see how our sister cities are isolated by the violence, how people risk being robbed, kidnapped, raped, shot, killed if they travel from one city to another.
Business people, investors, are leaving Mexico for the United States and Spain, when they are urgently needed to revive the economy.
Our youngsters are becoming addicted, they are bombarded by the dollars of drug traffickers who prey on the ignorance and needs of the people, who take advantage of poverty and the hatred that young people have against a government that does nothing for them.
Sr. Presidente, while you and your cabinet go on tour to other countries, exchanging flags, and during your U.S. visit and meetings and gala dinners with President Barack Obama, Reynosa was on fire and still is.
I raise my voice and shout from the rooftops, for this to end! I raise my voice and shout from the rooftops, and ask for peace!
I raise my voice and shout from the rooftops to ask all the sister cities Reynosa and Rio Bravo, Valle Hermoso, Diaz Ordaz, Camargo, MigueI Aleman, etc etc, that we not shut up, that we raise our voices together until you hear us.
Presidente Felipe Calderon, this time I speak myself, my feelings, my frustration, my impotence, my rage, but I’m sure thousands of Reynosenses feel and live what I do. Please listen to the voice of the people of MEXICO, hear my petition and those of many Mexicans.
And I am writing to you because for our governor and mayor, for them what we hear and see are pure fairytales, they say nothing happens in Tamaulipas, everything is very quiet.
Rodolfo Torre Cantu’s murder and that of other candidates and mayors in cities across the state are the true face of what is now happening in Tamaulipas.
Egidio Torre Cantu, our governor, has lost control of our state and our mayor, Everardo Villarreal, has lost control of our city, Reynosa.
With all due respect because you’re the federal executive, please put a stop to the war of words between different political parties, something has to be done in Tamaulipas and other states of the republic.
It is obvious that politicians, government officials and employees of municipal, state and federal police agencies are linked to organized crime and we’re angry and shocked of what they do…
I appreciate that you take the time to read it, and I hope to be lucky to talk with you.
God bless you and your family.
ALL CITIZENS OF TAMAULIPAS, RAISE YOUR VOICE AND PASS THE LETTER TO MEXICO, AND THE WORLD, FOR ALL TO HEAR!!
S. O. S.Share it:
By Jason Buch, David Hendricks
San Antonio Express News
A sign advertising hiring at the Corning maquiladora hangs outside the plant in Reynosa, Mexico. Photo: Lisa Krantz/Express-News
McALLEN — As the rest of the world tries to claw its way out of the economic downturn, businesses here and across the Rio Grande are hanging “help wanted” signs.
It’s evidence that despite the drug violence in Mexico that killed more than 15,000 people last year, and the negative attention that has all but destroyed border tourism, trade between that country and the U.S. has recovered and surpassed prerecession levels. Last year, trade was at an all-time high.
Mexico, the No. 3 trading partner of the U.S. and No. 1 of Texas, conducted more trade — almost $400 billion worth — with this country in 2010 than any other year since the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank began tracking the numbers in 1980.
“This is still the closest place to the U.S. to serve in the U.S. market,” said Jesus Cañas, an economist for the Fed in Dallas. “Mexico is still a great platform. This manufacturing relationship goes back to the ’60s.”
Raw materials flow south to factories that once were concentrated on the border but have begun to spread out across Mexico.
Car parts return from Monterrey, Mexico’s industrial capital. Consumer electronics are built in Ciudad Juárez, across from El Paso, and shipped into the U.S. The Rio Grande Valley is becoming an important entry point for Mexican agricultural commodities bound for U.S. markets.
But questions about the future of U.S.-Mexico trade loom behind the good news. Foreign investment, which funds Mexican manufacturing, hasn’t shown a post-recession recovery the way trade numbers have.
Some existing businesses have seen their bottom lines hurt by the violence. Others simply have had to make minor changes to protect their employees.
But the economic incentives of doing business in Mexico far outweigh the costs brought on by the drug war violence.
“We have a plant to run. We’re committed to it,” said David Hawkins, vice president of operations for Metal Industries Inc., a North Carolina company that operates a maquiladora, a foreign-owned factory, in Reynosa. “We can’t just close and leave.”
Truck traffic on the World Trade bridge complex, Laredo, Texas.
Trade along the border
U.S. demand for goods such as automobiles, clothing and consumer appliances fuels Mexico’s manufacturing industry.
When trade between the two countries fell in 2009, it wasn’t because of conflicts between drug traffickers. It was because U.S. demand for Mexican-manufactured goods plummeted.
By last year, that had changed. Total U.S. trade with Mexico topped $393 billion, up 28 percent from 2009 and up 7 percent from 2008, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.
Texas plays a major role. Six of the top 10 ports trading with Mexico are in the Lone Star State: El Paso, Eagle Pass, Laredo, Hidalgo, Brownsville and Houston. Together, they account for more than 60 percent of all U.S. trade with Mexico.
The big daddy of binational trade is Laredo, with two commercial bridges where, each day last year, an average of more than 10,000 trucks crossed each way. The port saw $121 billion in trade between the two countries, nearly a third of all U.S.-Mexico trade.
Unlike the McAllen-Reynosa area downstream and the El Paso-Ciudad Juárez area upstream where maquiladoras are king, the economies in Laredo and its Mexican sister city, Nuevo Laredo, rely on logistics, and the shipping of raw materials to the Mexican interior and finished products back north.
In Reynosa, a town of 600,000, 141 maquiladoras employ more than 84,000 people. The factories added more than 4,000 jobs last year, and for every 10 of those, one job was added on the U.S. side of the Rio Grande, said Keith Patridge, president and CEO of the McAllen Economic Development Corp.
Mike Myers, the general manager of the Metal Industries plant in Reynosa, said that in March he hired 10 people, the first time he’d added staff in two years.
Across from Del Rio in Ciudad Acuña’s industrial parks, where 42 maquiladoras employ 27,071 in the city of about 136,755, the situation is much like Reynosa, said José Ramón Lozoya, a customs broker and the president of Ciudad Acuña’s chamber of commerce. Factory managers have been holding job fairs to staff their lines as a recovering U.S. auto industry creates demand for parts.
“They’re increasing, but now the problem is there’s not enough people to fill those jobs,” Lozoya said.
In Ciudad Juárez, where factories employ 194,069 — about 10 percent of all maquiladora workers in Mexico — the dollar amount of trade grew more than 30 percent in 2010 to $56 billion.
Last year in Ciudad Juárez, a city of 1.3 million, more than 3,000 people were reported killed in cartel turf wars. But despite the unchecked violence, the wheels of industry keep turning.
In the past 18 months, Ciudad Juárez maquiladoras added 28,000 jobs, said Manuel Ochoa, vice president for binational development at the El Paso Regional Economic Development Corp.
Gunmen opened fire on three Eagle Ottawa Leather company buses on a Ciudad Juarez highway in November, 2010, killing four maquiladora workers.
The drug war domino
Trade between the U.S. and Mexico is increasing despite an actual drug war that has moved beyond trafficker-on-trafficker and trafficker-on-police violence. Legitimate businesses are forced to pay protection, and their employees are kidnapped and subject to ransom demands.
A produce distributor with operations in McAllen told the story of a truck driver bringing strawberries to the U.S. through northern Mexico. The driver was kidnapped and held for ransom, and when his boss wouldn’t pay, the kidnappers killed him.
In January, a Black & Decker maquiladora manager was killed in Reynosa. Buses filled with factory workers have been attacked outside Ciudad Juárez.
The violence means those involved with trade along the border need to alter their business plans, said J.O. Alvarez, a Laredo customs broker whose business has locations across the U.S. and Mexico.
One customer had to start crossing denim shipments in El Paso because the cargo was getting stolen in Nuevo Laredo, sometimes right out of the Mexican customs lot. Other trucking companies have taken to providing high-value cargo with armed escorts, he said.
In Reynosa industrial parks, fences have sprung up around maquiladoras, and private security forces cruise the streets.
Domingo Auces, marketing director of San Antonio-based Precision Mold & Tool Group, recalled that a son of a Mexican executive at a factory making products for Black & Decker, a Precision customer, was kidnapped while playing soccer. Various companies, including Precision, lent money to the executive to pay the ransom.
“It hasn’t stopped him (the executive) from working there. It hasn’t stopped us from doing business with them. These are risks you are going to run into,” Auces said.
Employees at the Metal Industries Inc. maquiladora in Reynosa, Mexico. Photo: Lisa Krantz/Express-News
Why companies stay
Poverty remains a big problem in Mexico. According to the CIA World Factbook, 18 percent of Mexicans live under the poverty line, using the food-based definition of poverty. Using the asset-based definition, almost half the country is impoverished.
While that’s hardly good news for Mexico, for U.S. companies it means that to set up operations, Mexico is cheaper than doing business in Asia and certainly cheaper than in the U.S.
And even with the increased costs for security, changing shipping routes, developing contingency plans, and the inefficiencies and lost sales that come from not being able to meet with customers in dangerous parts of Mexico, the reality is that it’s still very cheap to manufacture in Mexico.
Manufacturing costs in China are about 94 percent of U.S. manufacturing costs, according to a 2009 report from consulting firm AlixPartners. In Mexico, manufacturing costs are only 75 percent of what they would be in the U.S., according to the report.
Production workers in the U.S. make about $15 an hour, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Industrial workers in Mexico make about $3.50 an hour, as opposed to $3 an hour in China, according to a report from the National Council of Maquiladora and Export Manufacturing Industry.
But the savings in labor are eroded with the higher cost of shipping from Southeast Asia. It costs $4,300 to ship a 40-foot container from Hong Kong to San Antonio via Long Beach, Calif., and will take 24 to 26 days to get there, according to DHL Global Forwarding. It costs $1,800 to drive a 40-foot trailer from Ciudad Juárez to San Antonio, and the trailer will get there in eight to 10 hours.
The result is that 95 percent of goods manufactured in Mexico end up being shipped north of the Rio Grande, Cañas said. And border cities are popular among foreign manufacturers because higher-wage employees like engineers and managers can live on the U.S. side of the Rio Grande and commute to work.
Tamaulipas state police on patrol (AP)
Challenges for growth
It’s not all good news for Mexico’s manufacturing sector, however. Foreign investment in Mexico hasn’t increased significantly.
Speaking to the Mexican Senate in early April, Agustín Carstens, the head of Mexico’s central bank, raised concerns about the impact the country’s war against drug traffickers is having on foreign investment.
Numbers from the bank show foreign investment in Mexico in 2010 was only $17.7 billion, down from an average of about $25 billion before the recession. And of that $17.7 billion, $5 billion came from the purchase of Fomento Económic Mexicano S.A.B. by Dutch brewer Heineken N.V., said Rafael Amiel, IHS Global Insight’s director for Latin America Economics.
For the time being, Mexico’s automotive and manufacturing sectors have enough capacity to continue meeting U.S. demand, he said. But there are questions about the future of Mexico’s manufacturing industry, which relies heavily on foreign investment, Amiel said.
It’s not always the violence itself that’s a problem, Amiel said. The negative news coming out of Mexico makes companies leery of setting up shop there, even though some areas of the country are safe.
“There’s a clear, clear difference of what’s going on in border cities and border states and what’s going on in southern Mexico,” he said. “But I’m not very optimistic that new ventures will come to Mexico.”Share it:
The Mexican military descended in a place resembling a wasteland in the town of Escobedo, within the city limits of El Carmen, where they found three small huts made of tin and cardboard.
In the shacks the military confiscated seven long guns, a handgun, three grenades, magazines, ammunition and radio communication devices.
The head of the agency, Damián Canales Mena, said that the arrests were made on Thursday when it was learned that Los Zetas were having a meeting in the community of Pri Chacón.
While the five police officers that were arrested belonged to the Police departments from several municipalities, including those found Chilcuautla, Mixquiahuala, and Progreso de Obregón.Share it:
ZDNet – 15 minutes agoChina’s green tech industry raked in $63.9 billion last year, making the Asian giant the world’s leading green IT producer in terms of revenue.
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