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Showing posts from March, 2017

Christos Tsiolkas on Australia's "toxic" approach to asylum seekers and refugees

Christos Tsiolkas - renowned author, writing the Forward to a new book on refugees - calls out Australia's conduct and Oz politics in relation to refugees and asylum seekers for what it is......"toxic".

"We read for pleasure and we read for knowledge. And there are some books we read because we must, for in not reading them we are in danger of not understanding our world and our own place in the world. Over the last century such books have included The Diary of Anne Frank, Primo Levi’s If This is a Man, George Orwell’s 1984, Hannah Arendt’s Eichmann in Jerusalem and Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s The Gulag Archipelago. There are others, of course there are, from every continent on this planet but I mention those five because they were crucial in creatively and purposefully giving voice to the obscene injustice and anti-humanity of totalitarianism. It is no accident that three of them have as their subject the Holocaust and the others that of the Stalinist purges and the murd…

The cost of Donald......

It was pretty obvious it would happen....  The antics of Trump and some of his policies (take barring certain people being barred at the border from entering the US as just one) has had its repercussions..... and likely to have more.

Like many Washington lobby groups, the US Travel Association was quick to congratulate the new president on his victory last November. "We are encouraged that Mr Trump's extensive business and hospitality background will make him a ready and receptive ear," the trade organisation said. Upon the Republican's inauguration, the USTA's chief executive, Roger Dow, pledged the industry as a "capable, willing partner". But almost immediately, things started to go sideways. A steady drumbeat of news and policy proclamations seemed likely to damage America's $US250 billion travel industry and its roughly 15 million US employees.

Pricking the inflated Donald balloon

It takes a Maureen Dowd - ascerbic columnist for The New York Times - in her latest column to well and truly nail Trump and prick the inflated Donald balloon......

"WASHINGTON — Dear Donald,

We’ve known each other a long time, so I think I can be blunt.

You know how you said at campaign rallies that you did not like being identified as a politician?

Don’t worry. No one will ever mistake you for a politician.

After this past week, they won’t even mistake you for a top-notch negotiator."


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"You promised to get the best people around you in the White House, the best of the best. In fact, “best” is one of your favorite words.

Instead, you dragged that motley skeleton crew into the White House and let them create a feuding, leaking, belligerent, conspiratorial, sycophantic atmosphere. Instead of a smooth, classy operator like James Baker, you have a Manichaean anarchist in Steve Bannon."


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"You sold yourself as the businessman who could shake things up and make Washing…

Reality check for Richard Gere

There were reports recently of Richard Gere, the actor, hesitating about whether he ought visit Israel as part of promoting his new movie.    In the end he decided to go.

Mondoweiss reports on what happened in Hebron.....

"While Richard Gere was in Israel and the occupied West Bank promoting his film “Norman,” he was recorded in an unguarded moment wandering the desolate streets of Hebron’s Old City.   A dumbfounded Gere is near at a loss for words in the clip, which aired on Israel’s Channel 2 network.

Not a Palestinian in sight. Soldiers and settlers roam comparatively carefree. The roads are too quiet. All of the shops are shuttered. Gere is stunned:

“This is the thing that’s flipping me out right now,” Gere stammers to his Hebron guides, activists with the Israeli human rights group Breaking the Silence, former soldiers that now advocate against Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territory, “Of everything we’ve seen for two days, the people we’ve talked to, it’s…I mean…I’m…I…

Do we just sit on our hands?...while 20 million people starve

When will the conscience of what are mainly Western nations come to life.    Here is a humanitarian crisis looming - much of it brought about by the actions of Western nations - and nothing is done to alleviate it.    The New York Times republishes a report by Reuters.

"The world has only three to four months to save millions of people in Yemen and Somalia from starvation, as war and drought wreck crops and block deliveries of food and medical care, the International Committee of the Red Cross said Wednesday.

The aid agency still needs $300 million to deliver emergency assistance to a total of five million people in Yemen, Somalia and northeast Nigeria as well as areas of South Sudan, where famine has already been declared.

“We have probably a window of three to four months to avoid a worst-case scenario,” Dominik Stillhart, the Red Cross’s director of operations worldwide, said at a news briefing in Geneva. “We have kind of a perfect storm now where protracted conflict is overlappe…

The Barrier Reef.....as long as it still lasts

No additional commentary is needed for this more than relevant Editorial in The New York Times about the Barrier Reef and climate change.     Are you listening Donald Trump?

"Reports that the Great Barrier Reef is dying come ever more frequently, ever more urgently. There is no mystery about the reason — it’s global warming, caused by the fossil fuels we burn. If we stopped heating the oceans, parts of the great reef off Australia’s north coast and other spectacular coral reefs around the world could still recover. The alternative is to weep at the loss of one of the most spectacular sights on earth, as the author of the latest report and his students did on examining charts of the damage.

The death of coral reefs is a tragedy on many levels. There is the sheer beauty of the forests of brightly colored corals and the equally kaleidoscopic fish they harbor, a panorama that attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors. There’s their extraordinary variety and value: Coral reefs are foun…

The photo (with the woman wearing a hajib) may not tell the whole story......

It all depends on your perspective of and on things....

A photo published showing a woman, wearing a hajib, walking past a injured person from the said-to-be terrorist incident in London yesterday has caused more than interesting responses.

Read the full story here.






Even the Wall Street Journal calls out Trump

One could hardly call the WSJ as anything but conservative, and with the Sun King - aka Rupert Murdoch- the owner, a supporter of Trump.    But, today's Editorial pulls no punches about what the WSJ sees as Trump's manifest failings....

"If President Trump announces that North Korea launched a missile that landed within 100 miles of Hawaii, would most Americans believe him? Would the rest of the world? We’re not sure, which speaks to the damage that Mr. Trump is doing to his Presidency with his seemingly endless stream of exaggerations, evidence-free accusations, implausible denials and other falsehoods.

The latest example is Mr. Trump’s refusal to back off his Saturday morning tweet of three weeks ago that he had “found out that [Barack] Obama had my ‘wires tapped’ in Trump Tower just before the victory” on Election Day. He has offered no evidence for his claim, and a parade of intelligence officials, senior Republicans and Democrats have since said they have seen no such …

So, what is Donald hiding?

Hedrick Smith is a former Washington bureau chief for The New York Times, author of “Who Stole the American Dream?” and executive editor of the website Reclaim the American Dream.

He writes in "So, What Is He Hiding?" in today's New York Times....

"In his short White House tenure, President Trump has already set a record for histrionic tantrums against the media — whether attacking CNN, The Washington Post, The New York Times or MSNBC for revealing his 2005 tax return, as he did last week. He’s actually pursuing a well-worn path of American presidents blaming the press for their problems.

Five decades of reporting have taught me that whenever a president starts screeching about the media, it’s a sure sign he’s in hot water and fearing revelations about some policy disaster, damaging mendacity or political villainy. Even popular presidents with reputations for charming the press occasionally stoop to blaming the press for quagmires of their own making."

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"No…

No, ignorance isn't bliss!

As newspapers increasingly go out of business or cut back on journalists out in the field - plus the almost universal vacuousness of so-called news on TV - it is hardly surprising that a survey, detailed below, showed up an appalling lack of knowledge about the war in Yemen.

"More than half of British people are unaware of the “forgotten war” underway in Yemen, despite the Government’s support for a military coalition accused of killing thousands of civilians.

A YouGov poll seen exclusively by The Independent showed 49 per cent of people knew of the country’s ongoing civil war, which has killed more than 10,000 people, displaced three million more and left 14 million facing starvation.

The figure was even lower for the 18 to 24 age group, where only 37 per cent were aware of the Yemen conflict as it enters its third year of bloodshed."

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"The Human Appeal, a Manchester-based charity that commissioned the poll, warned a lack of international awareness was worsening a wors…

The people at the White House aren't the smartest around!

From the president down it is pretty clear that the occupants of the White House aren't the smartest people around....

"The White House sends out a regular email sharing coverage (predominantly positive) of Trump and his administration.

No one said it was an easy job. In fact, it turns out not even the person writing the email can do it effectively.

Today, the White House accidently (we assume) shared a satirical article from the Washington Post, slagging off Trump’s budget: proof they didn’t read beyond the (sarcastic) headline.

Either that, or they have a worrying inability to tell sarcasm apart from sincerity. "

Continue reading, here....and have a good laugh!

Trump the Philistine

Need any more be said about Trump and his motley, yet dangerous, White House crew, to see what a Philistine he and they are, in what is proposed in the Budget put forward today?....   

The Daily Beastreports.....


"President Trump’s first budget, titled “America First: A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again,” proposes deep, sweeping cuts to government-funded scientific and medical research—and would eliminate federal support for the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities outright. While many expected cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency and Energy Department, the breadth of the moves come as a shock, including the slashing of agencies that have long enjoyed bipartisan support. Among them: a proposed $6 billion cut to the National Institutes of Health, or one-fifth of its 2016 budget. The NIH sends about 80 percent of its budget to 300,000 outside researchers, meaning the dramatic cuts would send shockwaves across the scientific community more broadly. Other s…

Trump ....and one of his extreme far-right advisors

If this piece in Forwardtoday is correct, then yet another scandal besets the White House and Trump and is ever-increasingly motley crew.

"Sebastian Gorka, President Trump’s top counter-terrorism adviser, is a formal member of a Hungarian far-right group that is listed by the U.S. State Department as having been “under the direction of the Nazi Government of Germany” during World War II, leaders of the organization have told the Forward.

The elite order, known as the Vitézi Rend, was established as a loyalist group by Admiral Miklos Horthy, who ruled Hungary as a staunch nationalist from 1920 to October 1944. A self-confessed anti-Semite, Horthy imposed restrictive Jewish laws prior to World War II and collaborated with Hitler during the conflict. His cooperation with the Nazi regime included the deportation of hundreds of thousands of Jews into Nazi hands.

Gorka’s membership in the organization — if these Vitézi Rend leaders are correct, and if Gorka did not disclose this when he e…

Donald is gonna stick it to his supporters

This is interesting!     The Donald today announced the budgetary cuts he proposes to implement.   One would have to think that his "constituency" would be less than happy.....as The New York Times explains.

"To construct an “America First” budget, the initial trade-off for President Trump was fairly obvious: The military and veterans would get more of what they want or need, while diplomats and foreign countries would have to make do with less.

But in his first spending blueprint since taking office, Mr. Trump also made choices demonstrating that parts of America will be more first than others — and some of the budget losers, it turns out, may be some of the very constituencies that have been most supportive of the new president during his improbable rise to power.

While border guards will have more prisons to lock up unauthorized immigrants, rural communities will lose grants and loans to build water facilities and financing to keep their airports open. As charter school…

Let it not be said we haven't been warned

More than a timely warning - in a piece on AlterNet - from those whose opinions one ought not lightly dismiss.....

"Legendary linguist Noam Chomsky has a warning for Donald Trump's supporters; the Trump bump in the market is waning.

"Anti-establishment is kind of a joke," Chomsky concluded. "Take a look at Trump and take a look at who's appointed for the cabinet."

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, for example, "comes from Goldman Sachs, a major investment firm where he was for almost 20 years," Chomsky observed.

"What's anti-establishment?" he asked. "This [cabinet] is drawing from the billionaire class, largely financial institutions, and military and so on; in fact, take a look at the stock market, that tells you how anti-establishment he is."

"As soon as Trump was elected, and since, stock values in financial institutions escalated to the sky," he said. Investors are "delighted he's going to elimin…

Afghanistan: Notes from a Broken Land

The media has moved on from reporting on Afghanistan - unless some awful bombing, or the like, has occurred - but the country is a mess on just about every level.

Here, in a piece "Afghanistan: Notes from a Broken Land" on Information Clearing House, a grim "picture" of a country beset with a myriad of problems.    Of course, one can look to the West as having caused many of the problems.

"It is now winter in Kabul, end of February 2017. At night the temperature gets near zero. The mountains surrounding the city are covered by snow.

It feels much chillier than it really is.

Soon it will be 16 years since the US/UK invasion of the country, and 16 years since the Bonn Conference, during which Hamid Karzai was “selected” to head the Afghan Interim Administration.

Almost everyone I spoke to in Afghanistan agrees that things are rapidly moving from bad to rock bottom.

Afghans, at home and abroad, are deeply pessimistic. With hefty allowances and privileges, at least some…

Trump's obsession with Obama

An "interesting" take on Trump, his obsession with Obama, Trump's lies and how it might best dealt with - from by Edward Luce, writing in The Financial Times (behind a paywall).

"The White House is now the source of "Elvis Presley faked his death"-type stories. In the past week, rightwing websites have published stories that the Federal Bureau of Investigation is about to arrest Mr Obama for illegal wire-tapping, that a Floridian drug dealer whom Mr Obama pardoned had murdered his girlfriend, and that Mr Obama is plotting a coup to overthrow Mr Trump.

On Tuesday Mr Trump tweeted that 122 Guantánamo Bay prisoners who had been released by Mr Obama were back on the battlefield. It was wildly inaccurate. Of the 714 former Guantánamo prisoners who have been transferred, 121 are fighting again - all but eight of whom were released by George W Bush. None of this can be laughed off. Millions of Americans believe such stories. More will come.

The question is where it …

Dangerous directions in Denmark

The image of Denmark is that of a liberal country and society.    The Danes showed their true mettle during WW2 in the way it supported their Jewish citizens and stood up to the Nazis.     It is therefore troubling to read in this piece "Something Is Unspoken in the State of Denmark" in The New York Times, that the anti-Muslim nationalism is taking hold in Denmark.

"Anti-Muslim nationalism is blazing in Denmark. Parliament has discussed banning prayer rooms in schools and universities. The right-wing and nationalist Danish People’s Party, now the second-largest party in Parliament, is calling for immigrants to celebrate Christmas to prove their Danishness. To reinforce Danish culture and custom, the town of Randers has asked cafeterias in public schools to serve pork.

Most recently, a man was charged last month with blasphemy for posting a video of a burning Quran on Facebook back in 2015 — a charge that hadn’t been prosecuted since 1971.

This case in particular is emblem…

"Wake Up"

The message is loud and clear....and as you watch this, remember that it was on Israeli TV - not some anti-semitic or anti-Israel program somewhere in the world.


Oh what a mess the world is in

From Juan Coles at Informed Comment (reprinted on truthdig):

"The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs warned Saturday that the globe is facing the worst humanitarian crisis since the end of World War II.

2016 set post-war records in misery.

* More than 76 mn persons from 31 countries needed assistance.

* More than 51 mn persons were displaced (i.e. kicked out of their homes and made homeless).  That is the highest number since WW II.

*There were more than 400 natural disasters in the most recent year for which there is a full count (2014)

* In these 400 disasters, 17,000 people died

* The disasters caused $82 bn in damages.

That’s in general.  There were 6 “Level 3” emergencies in particular countries.  Level 3 is the most severe category the UN has, implying large-scale humanitarian crises.

In 2016 the Level 3 emergencies were:  Iraq, Syria, Yemen, South Sudan, Philippines, South Sudan and the Central African Republic.

What strikes me is how up to its neck t…

How the rich and powerful screw the rest of us...and spoil the atmosphere to boot

Coincidentally, 2 pieces published today reporting on Reports just out - with some significant stats to go with them  - put into sharp focus why the general populace sees itself as screwed (no other word for it!) and at the mercy of large multinationals (think spoiling the atmosphere in which we all live) ....

First, this from The New York Times:

"Complaining that the United States has one of the world’s highest corporate tax levels, President Trump and congressional Republicans have repeatedly vowed to shrink it.

Yet if the level is so high, why have so many companies’ income tax bills added up to zero?

That’s what a new analysis of 258 profitable Fortune 500 companies that earned more than $3.8 trillion in profits showed.

Although the top corporate rate is 35 percent, hardly any company actually pays that. The report, by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, a left-leaning research group in Washington, found that 100 of them — nearly 40 percent — paid no taxes in at least o…

Aung San Suu Kyi disappoints yet again

She has been almost lionised around the world, but the actions - or lack of them - of Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi since being released from house-arrest / detention, has been more than disappointing.

The New Yorker reports in "The Murder of an Honourable Lawyer in Myanmar"......

"Whenever I met with Ko Ni, whether seated in his office, with its flickering electricity and precarious piles of law books, or sipping tea in the moldering headquarters of Myanmar’s then-opposition political party, the image that came to mind was that of Atticus Finch—though an Atticus wearing a Burmese sarong. With his salt-and-pepper hair and upright bearing, Ko Ni was the consummate honorable lawyer. He persevered for decades as one of Myanmar’s top constitutional experts despite living under the rule of a military junta with little respect for judicial process. Every day, he woke up and prepared to throw himself, pro bono, into hopeless cases. One day in his office, I saw a sta…

Is this the sort of world we want to live in?

We all know that the plight of refugees is a worldwide problem.    Forget about anyone pausing for a moment to reflect on what precipitated the problem in the first place - looking at you the USA, the UK and Australia, amongst others, for in effect, bringing about, if not actually causing, the wars in Syria, Iraq and Libya - but the fact is that these millions of refugees must be treated decently and  humanely.   In many instances they are not.    Just look at what Hungary has just done.    Is this the sort of world we want to live in where people are treated disgracefully? - and often in breach of international law.

"Human rights groups have heavily criticised a vote by the Hungarian parliament to force all asylum seekers into detention camps as the country’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán, called migration “a Trojan horse for terrorism”.

The asylum seekers will be kept in converted shipping containers while they wait for their cases to be heard via video-link as part of measures Or…

Does anyone (apart from Donald) really want to cosy up to Putin?

There is nothing new about being wary of Putin and his cronies, but given the Trump White House having shown a propensity to be "talking" with the Kremlin more than one might have thought prudent, CQ highlights some recent happenings relating to Putin which ought to put anyone on guard about cosying up to the Russians.

"Considering the current state of the news cycle, specifically as it pertains to President Trump and his cronies' deep and abiding love for all things Russian, it's probably a good idea for us as a nation to start keeping more of an eye on what's happening with Putin and company. So what's going on in the land of winter and Bond villains? Well, it turns out it's not just the deaths of investigative journalists that are strange and suspicious. No, in the last six months, seven different Russian officials have died unexpectedly, and many under shady circumstances.

First, on the day Donald Trump was elected, a Russian diplomat named Sergei…

Wasil's (and that of others) long, tortuous and dangerous journey

This piece "Europe's Child-Refugee Crisis" in the New Yorker should, first, be sent to Trump and his cronies in the White House, and secondly by all those who even question the myriad issues surrounding refugees.    The piece in the New Yorker specifically follows Wasil - and his plight.    As you read the full piece, here, ask yourself what you would do were you to find yourself in his situation.   

"Among the 1.3 million people who sought asylum in Europe in 2015 were nearly a hundred thousand unaccompanied children. Most were from Afghanistan and Syria. Thirteen per cent were younger than fourteen years old. The data for 2016 are incomplete, but the situation is comparable. Experts estimate that for every child who claims asylum one enters Europe without seeking legal protection. (The number of unaccompanied minors attempting to enter the United States, most of them from Central America, has also increased dramatically in recent years. President Trump’s executive…

The Walled Off (Waldorf! - Get It?) Hotel

If there was ever making a Statement with a capital S, this is it....

"Acclaimed British street artist Banksy has presented artwork in Palestine before, but his new venture is his largest installation in the West Bank yet.

The Walled Off Hotel, at once art installation and real hotel, opened this week in Bethlehem. The 10-room hotel overlooks the controversial border wall dividing Israel and Palestine.

The Telegraph reported:

The 10-room Walled Off Hotel - built in the style of a colonial club, complete with delicate china and deep leather sofas - stands in the shadow of a wall considered illegal by most of the international community.

All of its rooms look out onto the wall’s bleak concrete slabs and its upper floors stand eye-to-eye with the Israeli watch towers that loom over parts of Bethlehem.

The hotel was built in complete secrecy over a 14-month period, surprising even Palestinian officials when its doors suddenly flew open on Friday.

“It has the worst view of any hotel in the w…

Trump eyes the internet

Be concerned......very concerned!     This piece "Forget Trump’s tweets and media bans. The real issue is his threat to the internet" from The Guardian ought to alarm all users of the internet.   Yet another example of Trump and his Administration looking to changing the whole internet "thing".

"Donald Trump lost no time installing Ajit Pai as the new chairman of the FCC, which regulates broadcast and internet media. Pai has stated that he opposes net neutrality, the principle whereby service providers and regulators treat all data the same. Since his appointment Pai declined to say whether he will enforce existing neutrality rules, but if these rules are overturned then the small number of companies that dominate US internet access will be permitted to promote content of their choosing, placing other content and its providers at a disadvantage.

Pai has reversed a recent FCC decision that would have opened the provision of cable set-top boxes to competition. The…

Forget spin! Now it's raw dishonesty

It is fair to say that Paul Krugman's latest column in The New York Times - "Goodbye Spin, Hello Raw Dishonesty" moves between anger and despair.     There is good reasons for Krugman's despair given the whole catastrophe which is trump, his cronies and his whole Administration. 

"At this point it’s easier to list the Trump officials who haven’t been caught lying under oath than those who have. This is not an accident.

Critics of our political culture used to complain, with justification, about politicians’ addiction to spin — their inveterate habit of downplaying awkward facts and presenting their actions in a much better light than they deserved. But all indications are that the age of spin is over. It has been replaced by an era of raw, shameless dishonesty.

In part, of course, the pervasiveness of lies reflects the character of the man at the top: No president, or for that matter major U.S. political figure of any kind, has ever lied as freely and frequently as…

Jim Crow......alive and well in Israel

Israel is always being touted as the only democracy in the Middle East.    

It's a myth..... as this piece "Jim Crow alive and well in Israel" on AlJazeera, so clearly details - substantiated with stats.

"It is very much the result of a conscious effort to build a permanent educational, social and political advantage of Jews over their Palestinian counterparts.

In 1969, the state passed a law that gave statutory recognition to cultural and educational institutions and defined their aims as the development and fulfilment of Zionist goals in order to promote Jewish culture and education.

In that light, in Israel, Palestinian children receive an education that is inferior in nearly every respect when compared with that for Jewish children.

Palestinian schools receive far less state funding than Jewish ones - three times less, according to official state data from 2004. In Jerusalem, it is half the funding."


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"In 1952, the Israeli state authorised the World Zion…

Sydney's unprecedented swelter.....due to climate change

It has been hot in Sydney, Australia.   Damn hot!.....and record-breaking.    So, because of climate change?  Yes, say the scientists.

"Southeastern Australia has suffered through a series of brutal heat waves over the past two months, with temperatures reaching a scorching 113 degrees Fahrenheit in some parts of the state of New South Wales.

“It was nothing short of awful,” said Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick, of the Climate Change Research Center at the University of New South Wales, in Sydney. “In Australia, we’re used to a little bit of heat. But this was at another level.”

So Dr. Perkins-Kirkpatrick, who studies climate extremes, did what comes naturally: She looked to see whether there was a link between the heat and human-driven climate change.

Her analysis, conducted with a loose-knit group of researchers called World Weather Attribution, was made public on Thursday. Their conclusion was that climate change made maximum temperatures like those seen in January and February at least…

A Reichstag fire in 2017?

Helene Sinnreich is a holocaust scholar and director of the Fern and Manfred Steinfeld Program in Judaic Studies at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.


Sinnreichs' piece "Beware of Another Reichstag Fire" on truthdig certainly provides food for thought........

"As various commentators compare President Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler, a flurry of responses has claimed that this is an inappropriate comparison because the Nazi regime murdered millions of men, women and children. It is important to remember, however, that when Hitler came to power in 1933, he did not begin with murder. His regime first sought to “encourage emigration” as a means of ridding Germany of the Jews and turned to genocide only when these efforts “failed.” One important motive for studying genocide is to be able to recognize early warning signs so that atrocities might be prevented rather than waiting for them to happen.

As a scholar of the Holocaust, I frequently teach about the Nazi rise to …

Yet another example of the world's moral compass slipping

When you have countries refusing to condemn another for using chemical weapons on their own people, you know the moral compass in our world has slipped yet another notch.

"Russia on Tuesday cast its seventh veto to protect the Syrian government from United Nations Security Council action, blocking a bid by Western powers to impose sanctions over accusations of chemical weapons attacks during the six-year Syrian conflict.

China backed Russia and cast its sixth veto on Syria. Russia had said the vote on the resolution, drafted by France, Britain and the United States, would harm U.N.-led peace talks between the warring Syrian parties in Geneva, which began last week.

Nine council members voted in favor, Bolivia voted against, while Egypt, Ethiopia and Kazakhstan abstained. A resolution needs nine votes in favor and no vetoes by the United States, France, Russia, Britain or China to be adopted.

Russian President Vladimir Putin described the draft resolution on Tuesday as "totally i…