Yemen’s Ansarullah movement announced that Saudi Arabia is giving huge bribes to foreign firms in an attempt to shut down anti-Saudi Yemeni media.

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Houthi rebel fighters inspect the damage after a reported airstrike carried out by the Saudi-military

By Crimson Tazvinzwa

Yemen’s Ansarullah movement claims that Saudi Arabia, which has been leading a deadly war on the impoverished country for the past three years, is giving huge bribes to foreign firms in an attempt to shut down anti-Saudi Yemeni media.

Mohammed Abdul-Salam, the movement’s Spokesman, made the remarks in a statement carried by Al-Masirah satellite television network on Sunday, saying in only one instance Riyadh had given as much as “$30 million to a foreign satellite company to block a Yemeni news channel for just 30 days”.

He added that the so-called military coalition, led by Saudi Arabia, was “sparing no effort” to muffle the true voice of Yemeni people calling out through the country’s satellite television channels and radio stations. https://youtu.be/YnYiVIGeKxU

 

Abdul-Salam also added that all attempts made by the “invaders” to target Yemeni media were constantly being foiled by the media bureau of Yemen’s Operations Command through revealing their true nature and the harm and misery that they had brought to Yemen so far.

“What the enemy is doing against the anti-invasion media outlets, either Yemeni or non-Yemeni, are mere oppressive acts aimed at obscuring the facts and distorting the reality, similar to what they have done and are doing against the Palestinian cause,” he stated.

Saudi Arabia and its allies launched the war on Yemen in March 2015 to reinstall the former Saudi-backed Hadi regime and crush the Houthi movement. The Yemeni Ministry of Human Rights announced in March that the war had left 600,000 civilians dead and injured until then. The war and an accompanying blockade have also caused famine across Yemen.

What US and UK media won’t tell you about the war in Yemen

A look at how western media outlets cover the war in Yemen and the powers behind it.

Leaked! Despite War Crimes in Yemen UK Trains Saudi Pilots
Sana’a (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Saudi Arabia and Yemen’s Houthi movement are holding secret talks to try to end the country’s three-year war, …

The recent Saudi and UAE-led coalition’s assault on the strategic Yemeni port city of Hudaida has forced an estimated 30,000 Yemenis to flee their homes and puts at risk the lives of some 22 million Yemenis who depend on Hudaida as the main gateway for imports of relief supplies and commercial goods.

More than 10,000 people have died in the war in Yemen, which has entered its fourth year, and about 80 percent of the population is in need of humanitarian aid.

The conflict has been cast in ways that have been very misleading to a US or UK audience. People don’t realise how involved our governments are in creating this catastrophe in Yemen. It’s construed as something that just is happening somewhere to people who are fighting each other.

Shireen al-Adeimi, assistant professor at Michigan State University

Yet Yemen’s conflict, which has been described as the “forgotten war” by Amnesty International, receives little media coverage.

If covered, western news outlets consistently portray the conflict as a proxy war between Iranian-backed Houthi-led militias and Yemenis. But how much attention has been given to the US and the UK, whose billion-dollar weapons sales and military assistance have enabled wealthy Gulf states to wage war against the poorest country in the Middle East?

“The conflict has been cast in ways that have been very misleading to a US or UK audience,” says Shireen al-Adeimi, assistant professor at Michigan State University. “People don’t realise how involved our governments are in creating this catastrophe in Yemen. It’s construed as something that just is happening somewhere to people who are fighting each other – casting it as a sectarian war, and more often as a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran which is completely misguided.”

Since the war began in 2015, the US and the UK have sold more than $12bn worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia alone – including some of the warplanes and the payloads they drop.

The American military also provides midair refuelling for Saudi and UAE aircraft, and both British and US personnel assist the Saudis as they target their strikes – hundreds of which have killed civilians.

“When you have coverage which doesn’t really provide context or a proper understanding of the key actors in a conflict and also the role of our own governments, publics are left with a sense of a confused conflict where it’s not clear who’s right or wrong, it’s not clear whether or not we’re involved in it,” says Piers Robinson, a professor at the University of Sheffield.

“These are big political, economic and military relationships which would cause increasing degrees of public dissent if people were fully aware of what’s going on. And you’ve got to remember, there is a close relationship between government officials and journalists,” Robinson adds.

Last year, CBS newsmagazine 60 Minutes broadcast a 13-minute in-depth report on the war that openly criticised Saudi Arabia but made not a single mention of the US role in the conflict, the weapons sales or the military and logistical support.

And MSNBC, the 24-hour news channel that Americans consider to be on the liberal side of the political spectrum, dedicated less than four minutes to coverage of the war.

It’s a “shocking failure of journalists to push back on the government’s own narratives”, says the Intercept’s Alex Emmons.

“The fact that journalists are not scrutinising it more just demonstrates that in American media culture it really is ok to devalue the lives of people in the Middle East, and the people that the United States tramples on to obtain its policy goals.”

Sarah Huckabee Sanders May Have Committed An Ethics Violation With Her Red Hen Tweet

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By Crimson Tazvinzwa

After issuing a statement that she was asked to leave a restaurant in Virginia, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders is facing accusations that she may have committed an ethics violation because her tweet came from her official @PressSec Twitter account.

Deadline reports that Democratic Representative Barbara Lee of California also called for Sanders to be “referred to the Office of Government Ethics” on CNN’s State of the Union with Jake Tapper. 
Walter Shaub, former director of the OGE, criticized Sanders’ misuse of her government position on Twitter, comparing it to “the same as if an ATF agent pulled out his badge when a restaurant tried to throw him/her out.”

Contrary to what Trump supporters are suggesting, Sanders was not refused service.

The waiter who served her and her family posted on Facebook:

If Trump supporters can cheer bakers refusing to bake cakes for same-sex weddings, the same principle applies to Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her family.

Trump supporters don’t get to claim that businesses can legally discriminate and then become outraged when Sarah Huckabee Sanders is asked to leave a restaurant, which by the way, is not the same thing as being refused service. The restaurant or any other business has a right to ask a customer to leave.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders got off lucky because if she were a refugee fleeing for her safety, her boss would have separated her family and thrown her kids in cages. The faux outrage of the right is another distraction tactic. They don’t want the country to focus on the real human rights abuses being committed by this administration. Instead, let’s focus on the press secretary having to eat somewhere else.

It isn’t like she was refused service or some passed a law telling her where she can and can’t go.

Trump supporters can’t have it both ways. They can’t support bathroom bills, family separations, and discrimination against gay people, but be outraged when a restaurant owner decides that they would rather not have Sanders in their establishment.

Sanders has helped to further the divide this country, so she was reaping what she had sown when she was asked to leave the restaurant.

“I’d Like To Ask You To Leave,” Restaurateur Told Trump’s Spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders to leave restaurant

 

SOUTH AFRICAN JEWS REPORT ‘FLURRY OF VICIOUSLY ANTI-SEMITIC’ INCIDENTS

Recent incidents include an antisemitic rant at Johannesburg’s international airport, a swastika mural and hateful comments on social media.

A protestor outside the Israeli embassy in Pretoria, South Africa
A protester and member of South Africa’s ultra-left Economic Freedom Fighters party (EFF), carries a placard outside the Israeli embassy in Pretoria, South Africa. (photo credit: SIPHIWE SIBEKO/REUTERS) 

Representatives of South Africa’s Jewish community said they are seeing an uptick in anti-Semitic rhetoric in real life and on social media.

“Over the past 24 hours, a flurry of viciously antisemitic and threatening attacks have been made against South African Jews, both on social media and in direct face-to-face encounters,” the South Africa Jewish Board of Deputies said in a statement Thursday.

Passengers awaiting their suitcases from an El Al flight into South Africa were called “wicked Jews” at the airport by a man who ranted against them from across a luggage belt at O.R. Tambo International Airport near Johannesburg. Also, a mural with a German flag and a swastika was painted this week on a Johannesburg wall.

The incidents occurred amid a flood of hate speech online against South African Jews, Board of Deputies Chairman Shaun Zagnoev said in the statement. He said the board was following up on the incidents, which have “generated great anxiety and anger in the Jewish community.”

“The posts show how easily radical anti-Israel sentiment can spill over into hateful slurs and threats against Jewish people in general,” the statement said. “We are being told that we are ‘scum,’ ‘rats,’ ‘bastards,’ ‘pigs,’ ‘swine’ and ‘fat-nosed f**ks. We are further being warned that ‘our time is coming’ and that ‘the Holocaust will be a picnic after we are done with you.’”

9,000 whiskey barrels crash to ground in warehouse collapse in Kentucky

Whiskey galore as bourbon depot collapses

Around 9,000 whiskey barrels crashed to the ground after a large part of a bourbon storage warehouse collapsed in Kentucky.

Pictures from the scene showed them lying on a big heap at the Barton 1792 Distillery in Bardstown.

The structure, which has holding about 20,000 barrels, suffered major damage.

It is not known what caused the incident at warehouse No 30 but no injuries were reported.

“We are assessing how many of the impacted barrels can be recovered,” said Amy Preske, a spokeswoman for Sazerac, a Louisiana-based spirits company.

“A mix of various distilled products at various ages were stored in that warehouse.”

Bardstown Fire Chief Bill Mattingly said the warehouse, which is on a steep hill, collapsed “length-wise”, and left the other half-leaning and in danger of buckling, the Kentucky Standard reported.

Whiskey warehouse collapse
Image:Around 9,000 barrels are thought to be affected

He said: “We’re trying to determine why it collapsed. There was nobody in the building at the time. We’re very fortunate in that.”

Mr Mattingly said there was a 3.5m (12ft)-deep basement under the warehouse, and the emergency services hoped most of the whiskey went into it.

There are concerns that some of the whiskey could have flowed into nearby groundwater. Early tests proved negative for the alcohol.

Warehouse collapse
Image:The structure, which has holding about 20,000 barrels, suffered major damage. Pic: Chief Billy Mattingly, Bardstown Fire Department

John Mura, a spokesman for Kentucky’s energy and environment cabinet, said: “There is a stream of bourbon and water running down the hillside that has taken much time to properly and thoroughly assess.”

EU pledges to uphold impartiality in observing Zimbabwe polls

European Union observers on Saturday pledged to uphold impartiality in observing Zimbabwe’s July 30 polls, the first time the mission is observing the polls since 2002.explo

This follows its invitation by the new Zimbabwe government led by President Emmerson Mnangagwa to deploy an observer mission.

Mnangagwa assumed power following the resignation of former president Robert Mugabe last November.

Addressing a contingent of 44 long-term observers just before their deployment throughout Zimbabwe on Saturday, deputy chief observer of the EU Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) Mark Stevens said the mission will not interfere in Zimbabwe’s electoral processes.

“As you go around your work in the following weeks, please keep in mind the role of observers. Our job is to be impartial, to be independent and never to interfere in the process,” said Stevens.

The 44 long-term observers are the EU’s second contingent to Zimbabwe following the core team, which arrived in Harare on June 6.

“The long-term observers will cover all 10 provinces in both, urban and rural areas. They will observe the entire electoral process prior, during and after the harmonized elections,” said Stevens.

He said the observers will be meeting electoral officials, candidates and representatives from political parties, civil society and the media.

Prior to their deployment, the long-term observers received a three-day in-depth briefing in Harare on the electoral background, political environment and other topics.

A total of 44 short-term observers and a delegation of the European Parliament will join the long-term observers shortly before the election.

“Together with diplomats accredited in Harare the EU EOM is expected to deploy on election day about 140 observers from all 28 member states as well as Norway, Switzerland and Canada,” Stevens said.

He added that the EU EOM’s analysis will include aspects such as the legal framework, the work of the election administration, the campaign activities of the candidates and political parties, the conduct of the media, the voting, counting and the tabulation of results and the resolution of election related disputes.

The EU observer mission will issue a preliminary statement shortly after the elections with the final report – with technical recommendations for future elections – expected two months later.

A total of 23 presidential candidates have registered to contest the poll, the highest number since Zimbabwe’s independence in 1980.