തൈറോയിഡ് രോഗങ്ങള് ഡോക്ടര് ലൈവ്
If Omar Mateen acted alone in plotting the massacre of 49 people at Orlando’s Pulse gay nightclub, he would be the exception rather than the rule in U.S. cases involving suspected Islamic State supporters.Sunday’s worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history prompted renewed warnings from officials of “lone wolf” attackers, a term that commonly invokes images of isolated individuals, radicalized online by violent propaganda and plotting alone.But a Reuters review of the approximately 90 Islamic State court cases brought by the Department of Justice since 2014 found that three-quarters of those charged were alleged to be part of a group of anywhere from two to more than 10 co-conspirators who met in person to discuss their plans.
Even in those cases that did not involve in-person meetings, defendants were almost always in contact with other sympathizers, whether via text message, email or networking websites, according to court documents. Fewer than 10 cases involved someone accused of acting entirely alone.The “lone wolf” image obscures the extent to which individuals become radicalized through personal association with like-minded people, in what might be termed “wolf dens,” experts on radicalization and counter-terrorism say.“We focus so much on the online stuff that we’re missing that there’s a very human connection going on here,” said Karen Greenberg, who runs the Center on National Security at Fordham University in New York.U.S. authorities on Monday were investigating whether Mateen — who pledged allegiance to Islamic State during the attack — had any help, but officials stressed they believed there were no other attackers.
FBI director James Comey said his exact motives remain unclear, but that there were strong indications he was inspired by foreign terrorist groups and that authorities were “highly confident” he was radicalized in part over the Internet.Law enforcement efforts to combat homegrown extremism have started to focus more on group dynamics. In a December speech at a counterterrorism conference in New York, Comey said investigators need family and friends to help them identify potentially radicalized individuals who may not have a visible online presence.“If they go out and interact with small groups of people, who sees them?” he said. “Community members.”
In February, the FBI launched a website to educate teenagers about the dangers of extremism and help parents and community leaders decide when to intervene and when to report troubling behavior.The Justice Department has secured convictions in around half the 90 Islamic State-linked cases. Other cases are ongoing, with some of the charges unproven in court and disputed by defendants.The relationships between accused co-conspirators range from casual acquaintances to lifelong friends, from married couples to cousins and from roommates to college buddies.
In some cases, the group included several defendants from the same community, such as the sprawling investigation in Minnesota in which 10 Somali-Americans were charged with plotting to aid Islamic State. Three were convicted at trial this month, while six others pleaded guilty in the case.In others, such as the married couple responsible for killing 14 people in December in San Bernardino, California, the relationship was far more intimate.In an increasingly frequent occurrence, the defendant was unwittingly working with an FBI informant posing as a co-conspirator, as federal authorities rely more on human intelligence and less on the comparatively low-hanging fruit of social media to identify potential attackers.
Face-to-face interactions can accelerate extremist viewpoints, turning the group to violence, experts said. And it can draw in others who might otherwise not have been susceptible to the lure of jihadism.“The true lone wolf is usually psychotic, and very few jihadists are truly psychotic,” said Jytte Klausen, a professor at Brandeis University who specializes in radicalization.Online propaganda is merely stoking the fire rather than igniting it, some experts said.“Imagine if Match.com were set up in such a way that the people could never meet,” said Max Abrahms, a professor at Northeastern University who has studied extremist groups. “Clearly there’s no replacement for actual socialization in person.”
One of the cases showing the crucial role of group dynamics involves a cluster of six defendants in the New York area.Nader Saadeh and his friend, a New York City college student named Munther Omar Saleh, had become convinced in 2013 that the end of the world was near, according to prosecutors.The two 20-year-olds decided to create a “small army” of friends, prosecutors said, and eventually recruited four others, including 21-year-old student Samuel Topaz and a 16-year-old friend of Saleh’s named Imran Rabbani.The men spent months discussing plans to join Islamic State in Syria or to launch a bomb attack on U.S. soil, according to investigators.Authorities first became aware of the group when Topaz’s mother called the FBI in early 2015 after becoming increasingly concerned about his behavior.
Topaz, raised by a Catholic mother from the Dominican Republic and a Jewish father from Israel, had dropped out of college and begun spending most of his time with two classmates, Saadeh and his older brother, Alaa. Topaz converted to Islam and had begun talking about traveling overseas, his mother told the FBI, according to court documents.The Saadeh brothers were trying to recruit Topaz by “preying” on his insecurities, she said.
In May this year, Alaa Saadeh was sentenced to 15 years in prison after pleading guilty in October to conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State. His brother, Topaz and Rabbani also pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing.Saleh, who is accused of plotting to set off a homemade bomb in New York, was arrested in June 2015 when he and Rabbani attacked a law enforcement surveillance vehicle that had been following them. Saleh and the other defendant, Fareed Mumuni, have pleaded not guilty.At his sentencing, Alaa Saadeh told the judge he had acted in part out of love for his younger brother in the absence of their deported parents.“I could have helped him,” he said. “I could have done a lot more.”
Analysis of data seized by investigators in last week’s raid of Google’s Paris headquarters could possibly take years, French financial prosecutor Eliane Houlette said on Sunday.Dozens of French police raided Google’s offices on Tuesday, escalating an investigation over suspected tax evasion.“We have collected a lot of computer data,” Houlette said in an interview with Europe 1 radio, TV channel iTele and newspaper Le Monde, adding that 96 people took part in the raid.“We need to analyze (the data) … (it will take) months, I hope that it won’t be several years, but we are very limited in resources”.Google, which said it is complying fully with French law, is under pressure across Europe from public opinion and governments angry at the way multinationals exploit their global presence to minimize tax liabilities.
Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg spoke publicly for the first time on Saturday about what she has learned from the sudden death of her husband a year ago, during a commencement speech for students at the University of California, Berkeley.“I’ve not spoken publicly about this before and it’s hard,” Sandberg told the 2016 graduating class about the death of her husband, Dave Goldberg, in May 2015.
“Dave’s death changed me in very profound ways,” an emotional Sandberg said during her roughly 25-minute keynote speech. “I learned about the depths of sadness and the brutality of loss. But I also learned that when life sucks you under, you can kick against the bottom, find the surface and breathe again.”Sandberg, 46, who joined Facebook in 2008 as chief operating officer for the popular social media platform, lost her husband to a treadmill accident while they were vacationing in Mexico last year.
The couple, married for 11 years, had two children together, a son and daughter. Last July, Sandberg joined the board of Survey Monkey, the online polling company that had been run by her husband.Sandberg, the author of “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead,” wove together somber and lighthearted tones in her speech on Saturday and urged graduates to face obstacles with resilience.“I’m sharing this with you today in the hopes that on this day in your lives, with all the momentum and the joy, you can learn in life the lessons I only learned in death. Lessons about hope, about strength and about the light within us that will not be extinguished,” she said.
The launch of Ukraine’s new police patrol force last year sparked an internet craze of citizens posting selfies with newly recruited officers.Their popularity stemmed not from their uniforms, body cameras and tablets, but the fact they did not demand bribes.The most visibly successful reform to have emerged from the pro-European Maidan protests in 2014 is now under threat, serving and former law enforcement officials say, accusing vested interests of seeking to obstruct and discredit the force.Vladyslav Vlasiuk, a lawyer by training who rose through patrol police ranks to become Chief of Staff of the National Police, quit in March, “exhausted” by the pushback against change, he told Reuters in his first media interview since.The experience he described shows how fragile Ukraine’s progress in transforming itself into a Western-facing free market democracy could prove to be.
The police reform, possibly for the first time in the former Soviet republic’s history, “showed international partners that we in Ukraine are actually able to carry out some reforms,” Vlasiuk said.Before Maidan, police “would always do what the prosecutors say. Then it changed,” he said. “The National Police positioned itself as a separate and equal law enforcement power. Prosecutors did not like it.”“We are seeing the prosecution service chasing patrol officers for wrongdoings. There is now a tension which is blocking the reform of the national police.”
In Ukraine, prosecutors have the power to launch investigations into public servants suspected of wrongdoing — a power which police officers say is being abused.“When you are working within any public service in Ukraine you have to be ready to deal with a lot of inspections, a lot of bullshit, a lot of irrelevant regulations,” Vlasiuk said.“And the prosecution is a controlling organ which can punish you for, in their opinion, improper actions,” he said.The General Prosecutor’s office did not provide immediate comment when asked about the allegations.The United States and European Union, which are helping to fund a $40 billion aid-for-reform program for Ukraine, have repeatedly called for a clean-up of the General Prosecutor’s office, which they see as a key obstacle to fighting corruption.
Several high-profile reformers have been sacked from the government and prosecution service or resigned in frustration.First Deputy Interior Minister Eka Zguladze has also quit, to take on an advisory role in the ministry. Her resignation statement on Wednesday gave no reason but contained a warning over the fate of reforms.
“I want to emphasize that these islands of success will drown in the ocean of corruption, nihilism, the bureaucracy, if we do not build bridges between them, creating a continent,” she said. “And if in Ukraine we do not have the strength to go forward, the door, that we just opened, may close forever.”With the help of U.S. money and training, and headed by a former Georgian minister, the new police force was set up as part of a root-and-branch reform to weed out endemic corruption.
The new patrol section was launched in July and incorporated into a revamped National Police force. The patrol officers seemed to be everything those dreaming of a new Ukraine after Maidan hoped: committed, trustworthy, less susceptible to bribes and not afraid to go after the rich and the powerful.Drawn from all walks of life, they carried smart tablets as well as body cameras to make police work transparent. In a sign of changing times, Energy Minister Ihor Nasalik announced on Friday he’d been given a parking fine — and willingly paid.Vlasiuk, 27, was part of a new generation of Young Turks entering public service after Maidan. He is in the process of setting up an NGO to provide legal assistance to officers and burnish the police’s image nationally.His former boss, a Georgian technocrat called Khatia Dekanoidze in charge of the National Police, described in a separate interview cases of vested interests undermining change.
An initiative to fire corrupt or incompetent officers by vetting them in a “reattestation” process has led to hundreds of lawsuits by sacked officers, some of whom got their jobs back.
Dekanoidze said judges were deliberately reinstating discredited officers for fear the judiciary could be next.“This is a revenge of the old system, because the judiciary system, especially courts, they are part of the old system,” Dekanoidze said.
There are other obstacles to reforms. The police budget is tight in a country at war with Russian-backed separatists and an economy that shrank by a tenth last year.An incident that has grown into a cause celebre for the police occurred on the night of Feb 7. A police car chased a speeding BMW through the streets of Kiev, recorded on a black and white police camera in footage later broadcast on TV.
Starting with warning shots, three police officers fired a total of 34 bullets at the car during the course of a 40 minute chase, according to an interior ministry spokesman. Eventually, one of the bullets killed a 17-year-old passenger inside.Prosecutors accused the officer of wilful murder and abuse of authority; he is under house arrest while they investigate.Police said the officer was trying to protect the public from a driver who was drunk. Their supporters protested in Kiev holding banners saying “Keep Calm and Support Patrol Police” and the hashtag #savepolice appeared on Twitter.
Anton Gerashchenko, a lawmaker and member of the interior ministry council, said the case was an example of prosecutors seeking to show they remained in control by discrediting police.Dekanoidze echoed that view. “Police reform is the only reform that is visible, that is a real reform for Ukrainians,” she said. So when prosecutors went after those defending the lives of ordinary Ukrainians, “it looked like The Inquisition.”She added there were other cases when police had gone after illegal gambling rackets — only for prosecutors to open criminal cases against the officers.A Western diplomat, who did not want to be identified by name, said the fight back by prosecutors showed reforms were starting to have a real impact.
“Prosecutors here are millionaires,” the diplomat said. “They are powerful people who will fight to the very end to protect the resources vertical they created.”Much will hinge on the performance of the new General Prosecutor, Yuriy Lutsenko, a former interior minister whose appointment on Thursday raised eyebrows because he had no legal background.Dekanoidze said she hopes prosecutors under Lutsenko will cooperate with the police. “Because … without a good and fair prosecution, police can’t do anything.”
Donald Trump proposed on Tuesday forcing Mexico to pay for his planned border wall by threatening to block remittances from illegal immigrants, which he said amounts to “welfare” for poor families in Mexico that their government does not provide.The Republican presidential candidate’s campaign said in a memo that if elected in November, Trump would use a U.S. anti-terrorism law to cut off such money transfers unless Mexico made a one-time payment of $5 billion to $10 billion for the wall.Trump’s pledge to build the wall has been a much-touted highlight of a platform targeting illegal immigration in the United States that has helped make him the front-runner to be the Republican nominee for the Nov. 8 election.
It is unclear how much a wall along the nearly 2,000-mile (3,200-km) U.S.-Mexico border would cost, and Mexico has been adamant it would not pay.The memo elaborated on an idea Trump floated in August, when he suggested seizing all remittances tied to “illegal wages.”
It said that upon taking office a Trump administration would propose a rule mandating companies such as Western Union Co WU.N to require customers to prove they were legally in the United States. If Mexico agreed to fund the wall, Trump would drop the proposed rule, it said.
“It’s an easy decision for Mexico,” his campaign said, adding the country receives about $24 billion a year in remittances from Mexicans in the United States, most of them in the country illegally.“It (remittances) serves as de facto welfare for poor families in Mexico. There is no significant social safety net provided by the state in Mexico,” it said.
According to the World Bank Remittances project, flows from the U.S. to Mexico in 2014, the last full year for which it has data, were nearly $24 billion although it is unclear what portion comes from Mexicans living in the country illegally.Democratic President Barack Obama called the remittance-blocking idea impractical and possibly self-defeating.
“The notion that we’re going to track every Western Union bit of money that’s being sent to Mexico, you know, good luck with that,” he told reporters. If Mexico’s economy collapses, it would just drive more immigrants to the United States, Obama added.Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto appeared to dismiss the proposal as campaign rhetoric.
“The (Mexican) Presidency has no comment on any opinion made in the heat of the electoral process to choose candidates for the U.S. presidency,” the president’s office said in a text message to Reuters.
Any move to target payments sent home by people living in the United States could have a crushing financial effect in Mexico, the leading recipient of U.S. remittances.Trump’s proposal could also affect banks and companies that handle wire transfers, which also include MoneyGram International Inc and PayPal Holdings Inc’s Xoom.
The companies did not respond to requests for comment.In addition to his wall proposal, Trump has accused Mexico of sending rapists and drug runners to the United States. Democrats and many Republicans have repeatedly condemned his comments as inflammatory, but his remarks have been enthusiastically received by his supporters, especially by white working-class voters.
In the memo, first reported by The Washington Post, Trump’s campaign repeated its pledge to target visas. It also cited imposing trade tariffs or enforcing existing trade rules as a way of forcing Mexico to pay.
Trump supporter Benjamin Proto, a Connecticut lawyer, acknowledged the remittance plan was unrealistic but praised the candidate for “looking at different ways to do things.”The memo emerged as Republican candidate Ted Cruz appeared set to beat Trump in Wisconsin’s primary contest on Tuesday, a win he would hope would mark him as the best alternative to the New York billionaire.