Forces in Afghanistan told to limit nighttime raids
By Barbara Starr
Washington (CNN) —A new classified directive to coalition forces in Afghanistan puts restrictions on nighttime raids of Afghan homes and compounds, according to a senior U.S. official who has seen the document.
The official declined to be identified because a declassified version of the document has not been made public. The directive is signed by Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top NATO commander in Afghanistan, the official said.
The directive comes as the coalition seeks to reduce tension between its military forces and Afghan civilians in an effort to maintain Afghan public support.
Nighttime raids in which troops enter private homes have sparked problems for U.S. and NATO forces. The raids are viewed as overly invasive — a violation of the privacy of the home in Afghan culture — and they can turn violent.
The document orders forces to use Afghan troops at night “whenever possible” to knock on doors of residences and compounds, and to use them if forcible action is required for entry, the official said.
But the directive also orders troops to “conduct an analysis” of whether it is militarily essential to conduct a raid at night or whether it can be put off until daylight, the official said. If troops can keep a target under surveillance but wait for daylight, they then can enlist the aid of village elders, perhaps, in determining if a home or compound poses a threat, the official said.
The official emphasized that troops always have the right to defend themselves and are given leeway to use their best judgment on the battlefield.
McChrystal also is updating another directive, first issued last year, on conducting operations to minimize civilian casualties, the official said.
The updated version, which is yet to be published, will include “more clarity” for troops on how to operate in “escalation of force” incidents, such as when a vehicle approaches a checkpoint in a potentially threatening manner and troops must decide whether, and when, to fire at it. The official declined to offer further details but said the aim is to make sure even the most junior troops have full understanding of rules and procedures.
Some troops and local commanders have expressed concerns that recent rules can inhibit their ability to take action under fire.
These directives come as the coalition has been involved in several recent incidents in which civilians were inadvertently killed, and as the coalition conducts major operations in southern Afghanistan.
McChrystal released a video message to the Afghan populace apologizing for an incident this week in which 27 Afghan civilians were killed.
“I have made it clear to our forces that we are here to protect the Afghan people. I pledge to strengthen our efforts to regain your trust to build a brighter future for all Afghans,” he said in the message.
The official said the documents may be made public in the coming weeks, after current operations ease.
That includes the Taliban, right General?
Link to Article
Turkey’s PM eyes referendum to curb judges’ powers
Turkey’s prime minister said on Monday he will take constitutional reform to parliament and hold a referendum if necessary, raising the stakes in a row between his Islamist-rooted government and powerful secular judges.
“The judicial system should be objective and independent at the same time,” said Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, signalling that his AK Party might take a brewing confrontation with the conservative judges directly to the people.
“We are willing to carry out a constitutional reform and we’re going to bring the issue to the parliament with or without support from the opposition,” he said during a visit to Spain.
“We’ll open it to a public vote if we don’t receive support. Not only society, but also NGOs demand such a reform,” he told a news conference in Madrid.
Adding to fears of instability, Turkish police detained former heads of the air force and navy as well as other senior officers on Monday in an investigation into an alleged plot to undermine the Erdogan government and trigger a military coup.
The AK Party, which swept into office in 2002, ending the secularists’ decades-old grip on power, has enough votes in the 550-seat parliament to pass a bill calling for a referendum.
Erdogan gave no timetable for a possible referendum, which would further unnerve investors already already concerned by the growing political instability. Turkey is due to hold its next general elections in 2011 and Erdogan has repeatedly said he has no plans for calling an early vote.
The confrontation is the latest in a long struggle in the European Union candidate country between the AK Party, which has roots in political Islam, and conservative, nationalist secularists, whose bastions remain the military and judiciary.
The latest clash erupted last week, when a prosecutor, who reportedly had been investigating Islamic groups in the provinces, was detained.
He was accused of belonging to an ultra-rightist militant network, named Ergenekon, alleged to have been plotting a violent campaign to destabilise Erdogan’s government.
Link to Article
Prosecutors interrogate 51 Turkish officers
By SELCAN HACAOGLU
ANKARA, Turkey — Prosecutors interrogate 51 Turkish military commanders, including former Air Force and Navy chiefs, over alleged plans to destabilize the country by blowing up mosques to trigger a coup and topple the Islamic-rooted government.
It is the highest profile crackdown ever on the Turkish military, which has ousted four governments since 1960. The officers, self-appointed guardians of the country’s secular tradition, are expected to be taken to a court Tuesday after their interrogation in Istanbul.
The sweep has dramatically deepened a power struggle between the secular establishment and the government, which has strong electoral backing and the support of the European Union.
Link to Article
Here is the old logo.
Here is the Obama campaign logo.
Here is the Islamic crescent.
Here is the hybrid.
Any questions? Where is the outrage of the Pentagon? Oh I forgot, they are afraid to face what Islam is.
Link to source.
Hello everyone, I would just like to thank all of my teammates that donated to helping me hire a computer technician, and everyone else for their support. The tech. has given me the green light to post again, and I have missed the action very much! I am sure that most of my teammates here know that this is the second time that I have been hacked.
This time I am reporting the incident to the FBI’s Cyber Crimes Division in the morning, as it is most likely the same person. I am not exactly sure who did this to me, but the first time Google stated that some sites out of Iran where sending out viruses, and then some sick obsessed leftist freak started this site about me, which can be seen HERE.
So maybe this person is the culprit. Either way, my tech. said he that has added new security measures, and my message to the hackers is that I post under my real name, why don’t you grow a set and introduce yourself on my site, instead of cowardly hiding in the shadows? I will gladly embarrass you in a debate on Islam. But you already know that, and that is why you try and silence me. The only way to silence me, is to kill me. Bring it cowards!