WORLD LEADERS laud fallen soldiers on eve of armistice centennial

French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel hold hands after unveiling a plaque in the Clairiere of Rethondes during a commemoration ceremony for Armistice Day, 100 years after the end of the First World War, in Compiegne, France, November 10, 2018. Photo by Philippe Wojazer/Pool via Reuters

Leaders laud fallen soldiers on eve of armistice centennial

|AIWA! NO!|PARIS — Traveling from across the world to monuments honoring soldiers who fell 100 years ago, victors and vanquished alike marked those sacrifices Saturday ahead of Armistice Day and assessed alliances that have been redrawn dramatically since the dark days of World War I.

The leaders of former enemies France and Germany, in an intimate gesture that underscored their countries’ current roles as guarantors of peace in Europe, held their heads together at the site north of Paris where the defeated Germans and the Allies signed the agreement that ended the 1914-18 war.

After Chancellor Angela Merkel briefly snuggled her head into the neck of French President Emmanuel Macron, the two went inside a replica of the train car where the armistice was reached and put their names in a guestbook. Macron then took Merkel’s hand in his, again highlighting the changes on the continent where two world wars were fought in the 20th century.

“Our Europe has been at peace for 73 years. There is no precedent for it, and it is at peace because we willed it and first and foremost, because Germany and France wanted it,” he said.

Merkel was equally convinced of the power their friendship exudes.

French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel meet with veterans at the Clairiere of Rethondes, during a commemoration ceremony for Armistice Day, 100 years after the end of the First World War, in Compiegne, France, November 10, 2018. Photo by Philippe Wojazer/Pool via Reuters

“The will is there, and I say this for Germany with full conviction, to do everything to achieve a more peaceful order in the world even though we know we have very, very much work still ahead of us,” she said.

The open show of affection was a welcome antidote for Macron. Earlier Saturday, the French leader had a somewhat awkward meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump. As Air Force One landed in Paris on Friday night, Trump wrote on Twitter he had been “very” insulted by comments Macron made in the days before that he considered anti-American.

A century ago, the entry of U.S. troops into World War I tipped the momentum toward its allies, including France and Britain. Even as he embarked on two days of observances for the Nov. 11, 1918 armistice, Trump said the United States now bears far too much of the burden to defend the West.

A flurry of Armistice-related diplomacy once again turned Paris, the jewel that Germany sought to take in 1914 but which the Allies successfully fought to defend, into the center of global attention Saturday as dozens of world leaders arrived in the French capital on the eve of the solemn centennial commemorations.

A portrait of a soldier is displayed at the Armistice Museum in the Clairiere de Rethondes in Compiegne where the Germans signed the armistice in 1918 that ended the World War One, France, August 30, 2018. Picture taken August 30, 2018.  Photo by Christian Hartmann/Reuters

Merkel’s appearance in Compiegne marked how her nation’s bloodstained history with France has become a close alliance that is now the driving force behind the European Union.

In the four years of fighting, remembered for brutal trench warfare and the first use of gas, France, the British empire, Russia and the United States had the main armies opposing a German-led coalition that also included the Austro-Hungarian and Ottoman empires.

Almost 10 million soldiers died. France lost 1.4 million and Germany 2 million.

Yet, despite a war that was supposed to end all wars, World War II pitted both sides against each other once again in 1940.

Across the line that once marked the Western Front, leaders lauded the courage of soldiers who were killed during the unprecedented slaughter, before converging on Paris for a dinner.

The armistice entered into force on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, and on Sunday 69 world leaders will commemorate the centennial of the event at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, underneath the Arc de Triomphe in central Paris.

A view shows the table inside the replica of the wagon where the Germans signed the armistice in 1918 that ended the World War One at the Armistice Museum in the Clairiere de Rethondes in Compiegne, France, August 30, 2018.  Picture taken August 30, 2018.   Photo by Christian Hartmann/Reuters

At dawn Saturday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau went to Vimy Ridge, the battlefield in northern France where Canada found its sense of self when it defeated German opposition against the odds.

Standing amid the white headstones against an ashen sky, Trudeau addressed the fallen, saying what Canada has achieved in the past century has been “a history built on your sacrifice. You stand for the values on which Canada was built.”

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UK Prime Minister

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PM @Theresa_May and President @EmmanuelMacron laid a wreath of poppies and le bleuet at the Thiepval Memorial.

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In southern Belgium’s Mons, Canadians were also lauding George Price, the last Commonwealth soldier to die in the war when he was shot by a German sniper two minutes before the armistice took effect.

Trump was looking beyond the tragedy of death and destruction, asking in a tweet: “Is there anything better to celebrate than the end of a war, in particular that one, which was one of the bloodiest and worst of all time?”

After his meeting with Macron, Trump had been scheduled to head to the battlefield of Belleau Wood, 90 kilometers (55 miles) northeast of the capital, where U.S. troops had their breakthrough battle by stopping a German push for Paris shortly after entering the war in 1917.

The battle of Belleau Wood proved America’s mettle to allies and foes alike, and by the time the war ended U.S. forces were at least an equal to any of the other major armies, which were exhausted and depleted.

However, Trump canceled his visit because of bad weather and immediately came in for criticism.

“It’s incredible that a president would travel to France for this significant anniversary – and then remain in his hotel room watching TV rather than pay in person his respects to the Americans who gave their lives in France for the victory gained 100 years ago tomorrow,” David Frum, a speechwriter for former President George W. Bush, tweeted,

The White House sent a delegation that included chief of staff John Kelly in Trump’s place. Ben Rhodes, who served as deputy national security adviser in the Obama administration, said the White House should have had a fallback plan for the president.

“There is always a rain option. Always,” Rhodes said.

Trump is scheduled to visit a different U.S. cemetery close to Paris on Sunday.

John Leicester contributed.

British ambassador: United Kingdom disappointed with the US

The British ambassador to the United States Kim Darroch criticized the US unilateral sanctions against Iran

Tehran, Nov 10, IRNA|AIWA! NO!|- British ambassador to the United States Kim Darroch criticized unilateral sanctions against Iran, and said that London was disappointed with the US government.

“We are disappointed that the United States has withdrawn from Iran nuclear deal and re-imposed anti-Iran sanctions,’ he said in an interview with CBS News.

In another part of his remarks about Donald Trump’s government policies and his specialties, including the extreme use of social networks, Darroch said, “We need to work with foreign advisors of the United States and check Twitter.”

He refrained from answering a question about the impact of Trump’s policies on the European countries, “What should be seen is how the US-EU relations will continue.”

The European Union has repeatedly blamed the United States for its withdrawal from the 2015 Nuclear Deal and rebuffed sanctions against Iran in recent months.

UNHCR statement on new US regulation on asylum seekers

UNHCR expects all countries, including the United States, to make sure any person in need of refugee protection and humanitarian assistance is able to receive both promptly and without obstruction in accordance with the 1967 refugee Protocol to which the United States is a party.

|AIWA! NO!|Among the people on the move in Central America and Mexico today, many are fleeing life-threatening violence or persecution and are in need of international protection. UNHCR expects all countries, including the United States, to make sure any person in need of refugee protection and humanitarian assistance is able to receive both promptly and without obstruction in accordance with the 1967 refugee Protocol to which the United States is a party.

In an ideal and predictable world, asylum seekers should present themselves at the border and request protection. However, the reality of refugee flight is complex and requires management in a structured way with dignified reception arrangements. Long-standing insufficient reception capacity at official U.S. southern border ports of entry is resulting in significant delays in northern Mexico and is forcing many vulnerable asylum-seekers to turn in desperation to smugglers and cross the border irregularly. Many asylum-seeking families making this desperate choice are not trying to evade border authorities.

National security and dignified reception of refugees and asylum-seekers are not mutually exclusive, but rather mutually reinforcing. UNHCR stands ready at all times to support the United States and all governments and civil society partners working to guarantee that any person fleeing life-threatening violence or persecution is able to reach safe ground and is able to have their claim reviewed.

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PRESIDENT TRUMP’s youngest son Barron dragged into birthright citizenship debate

Trump’s youngest son Barron at centre of birthright citizenship debate

Donald Trump embraces his son Barron Trump in 2016. Photo / Getty Images
Donald Trump embraces his son Barron Trump in 2016. Photo / Getty Images
news.com.au

The US President recently revealed plans to sign an executive order that would prevent babies born in the country to parents who aren’t citizens getting automatic citizenship.

On October 30, Twitter user @davenewworld made a post stating that Barron would no longer be considered an American citizen under the new laws.

“Fun fact: Barron Trump was born in March 2006 and Melania wasn’t a legal citizen until July 2006,” the user wrote. “So under this executive order, his own son wouldn’t be an American citizen.”

Fifty Shades of Whey@davenewworld_

Fun fact: Barron Trump was born in March 2006 and Melania wasn’t a legal citizen until July 2006.

So under this executive order, his own son wouldn’t be an American citizen.

CBS News

@CBSNews

President Trump says he plans to sign an executive order to end birthright citizenship, challenging a 150-year-old constitutional standard https://cbsn.ws/2P1bc1O 

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He posted the tweet in response to a CBS News article announcing Mr Trump’s plan to challenge the 150-year-old constitutional standard by ending birthright citizenship.

Various Twitter users retweeted and replicated the post, and it went viral after a screenshot was posted to the comic Facebook page The Good Lord Above, which has almost four million followers.

The only trouble? The claim is completely untrue.

Currently, birthright citizenship dictates that any child born in the US automatically becomes a US citizen at birth. It is this that Mr Trump wants to change.

This principle stems from the 14th amendment, which states: “All persons born or naturalised in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.”

But this isn’t the only thing protecting Barron.

UN to investigate Saudi Arabia’s human rights record

  • Saudi Arabia’s human rights record under UN investigation

  • Saudi Arabia faces international condemnation for its apparent murder of Jamal Khashoggi and its ongoing war in Yemen.

  • The UK and the US are reportedly working on a joint resolution to end hostilities.

Members of the Saudi Royal House enter a hall in the Royal Palace in Riyadh
|AIWA! NO!|The United Nations Human Rights Council is to debate on Monday the dismal human rights record of Saudi Arabia following the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the ongoing assault on Yemen.

The so-called Universal Periodic Review, a compulsory four-yearly process, will also focus on Riyadh’s role in Yemen’s civil war.

Meanwhile, British foreign minister Jeremy Hunt said he will lobby the UN Security Council to try and find a political solution to four years of hostilities in Yemen.

At least 10,000 have been killed in the conflict between a Saudi-backed coalition and the Iran-backed Houthi rebels, and half the nation faces imminent starvation.

Hunt’s announcement came after Washington, which has long backed the Saudis, called for Riyadh to end its airstrikes in the country. UN diplomats, speaking anonymously, told Reuters news agency Britain and the US were working on a joint resolution to stop the fighting in Yemen.

Read more: Mass starvation looms quietly as civil war in Yemen rages

Public grilling

The half-day public debate will see a Saudi delegation, headed by the country’s Human Rights Commission chief Bandar Al Aiban, grilled by other nations over its human rights record.

Activists have urged countries to hold Saudi Arabia to account.

“UN member states must end their deafening silence on Saudi Arabia and do their duty of scrutinizing the cruelty in the kingdom in order to prevent further outrageous human rights violations in the country and in Yemen,” Samah Hadid, Amnesty International’s Middle East director of campaigns, said in a statement.

“The Saudi government’s long-standing repression of critics, exemplified by the extrajudicial execution of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last month, has until recently been willfully ignored by UN member states,” she added.

According to publicly submitted questions, Britain, Austria and Switzerland will directly ask about the Khashoggi case. Sweden will ask how it plans to improve respect for the freedom of expression and the safety of journalists.

The US will ask whether Riyadh plans to modify its counterterrorism law to ensure the definition of “terrorism” does “not include acts of expression, association, or peaceful assembly.”

Ahead of the review, the UN rights office published a list of concerns about human rights in Saudi Arabia, including discrimination against women, continued use of the death penalty, and “extremely broad” definitions of terrorism which enables “the criminalization of some acts of peaceful expression.”

aw/jm (AFP, Reuters)

United States – Caravan Migrants Take a Stunning Action Against President Trump – And Immediately Inspire Outrage

With the migrant caravan still more than a thousand kilometres from the U.S. border, Susan Ormiston looks at a day in the life of the migrants and finds out a little more about who is in their midst.

Caravan migrants take a stunning action against Trump – and immediately inspire outrage

Caravan migrants take a stunning action against Trump – and immediately inspire outrage
Migrants in the caravans from Honduras and other Latin American countries headed towards the U.S. border filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration alleging unconstitutional acts against them. (PEDRO PARDO/AFP/Getty Images)
Breaking: Trump makes a big announcement about how many troops are going to the border
President Donald Trump told reporters that he was considering sending as many as 15,000 troops to the border to prevent the entrance of a migrant caravan from Honduras. (OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP/Getty Images)

The complaint alleges that President Donald Trump is violating the Flores Agreement by detaining children in tents without the proper facilities as required by the law.

READ RELATED: Donald Trump suggests US soldiers could fire on migrant caravans if they throw rocks

The complaint continues to claim that because of his actions, the president also is violating the due process rights of migrants who should be allowed to legally challenge their designations as illegal aliens apart from asylum seekers.

Some 2,000 migrants traveling in two groups departed El Salvador’s capital of San Salvador hours apart Wednesday morning, heading north in the hope of reaching the US. The first caravan numbering 4,000, which has been on the road for the past two weeks, planned to rest at least a day or longer in the Mexican city of Juchitan beginning Wednesday, hoping to organize mass transport northward after days of hard walking in scorching temperatures that have left them about 900 miles from the nearest US border crossing in McAllen, Texas.

“The legal problem with Trump’s plan to stop caravan persons from entering this country is that Plaintiffs are seeking asylum, and Trump simply cannot stop them from legally doing so by using military, or anyone,” the filing read.

“How is this real?”

Many on social media could not believe that migrants were already taking legal action against the government of a country they had not even entered into yet.

“A group of people in the migrant caravan is suing the U.S. government in federal court,” said Daily Mail David Martosko, Daily Mail editor.

“None of them is a U.S. citizen or a permanant resident,” he added, “and none of them is physically in the U.S. or has ever been physically in the U.S. I give up. How is this real?”

“This is fully ridiculous.” responded California GOP committeewoman Harmeet K. Dhillon.

The lawsuit names President Trump, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Homeland Security, and DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, among others, as the defendants.

Earlier Thursday, Trump made a very strong statement against illegal immigration generally and the caravan migrants specifically, and said that he would change immigration policy to prevent their entry into the United States.

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REPUBLICAN PARTY Right Wing Members Of Congress Invite English Defense League (EDL) Founder Tommy Robinson To a Major Event In Washington DC, Despite His Criminal Record In UK

 There are plans for Robinson to take his message across the globeRight wing members of Congress have invited the EDL Member Tommy Robinson To a Major Washington DC GOP event on 14 November.

MATTHEW MCGREGOR, openDemocracy Uk|AIWAI! NO!|Stephen Lennon, also known as Tommy Robinson, has been invited to speak at a major conference in Washington DC. If he’s allowed to attend, it will give him a big platform to push his anti-Muslim agenda. It will give him the respectability of appearing alongside members of Congress. And it could net him in the range of £1million via fundraising. The question is whether – given his long criminal record – he’ll be allowed to attend.

Here’s the situation: the Middle East Forum has, in conjunction with the David Horowitz Freedom Center, invited Lennon to the United States in mid-November. In addition, Rep. Paul Gosar and six other members of Congress have invited Lennon to speak to the Conservative Opportunity Society in a closed-door event.

Our analysis suggests that Lennon will raise in the range of £1m as a result of the exposure and links he can foster on this trip if he is allowed into the US. We expect him to use his media profile and funding to tour the country organising demonstrations about grooming scandals. Previous demonstrations organised by, or for, Lennon have descended into violence and left a trail of division.

Robinson still faces a possible jail term for contempt of court having posted footage he filmed from outside a grooming gang’s trial online

On Tuesday 23rd October, outside the Old Bailey in London, Lennon announced his intentions:

“I want to spend the next six months travelling to towns and cities blighted by these problems. By next summer the entire world is going to the true extent of the rape of Britain. Again, I am going to have more in videos coming up”.          

Some people have asked how he’d be allowed to travel to the US given his record. In 2013 Lennon was jailed for 10 months for using someone else’s passport to travel to the USA. Lennon used a passport in the name of Andrew McMaster to board a Virgin Atlantic flight from Heathrow to New York. He entered the US illegally then used his own passport to return to the UK. It is believed that Lennon received a ten-year ban on re-entering the US following his 2013 conviction.

But the Trump administration can override these bans if they want to, giving Lennon the possibility of getting in for his lucrative speaking engagement. It seems that the people behind the invite to Lennon have made a request to the US administration to lift his ban. The Middle East Forum and the David Horowitz Freedom Center both have very good political links to the Trump administration.

The people behind this event are pushing at a half-open door. The Trump administration has strong links to the self-defined “counter-jihad” movement. There were early appointees like Steve Bannon, Mike Flynn and Sebastian Gorka. More recent appointments include National Security Advisor John Bolton, who has close links to Pamela Geller, an American activist notorious for her anti-Islamic writings, and the new chief of staff of the National Security Council, Fred Fleitz, part of a group who promote anti-Islamic conspiracy theories. Trump himself received briefings from  Frank Gaffney, a key figure behind the ‘Obama is a Muslim’ conspiracy theory, and Bridget Gabriel, head of the largest anti-Muslim campaign group in the US, ACT for America. ACT recently boasted of having monthly meetings with the White House. This is an administration infected with anti-Muslim prejudice.

The Trump administration has shown its own support for Lennon, especially following his imprisonment for contempt. The British ambassador to the US was lobbied in June by Trump’s ambassador for religious freedoms, Sam Brownback, who demanded the UK government be more sympathetic towards the former EDL leader. At the same time, Donald Trump Jnr, Trump’s son, personally tweeted out his support for Lennon.

About the author: Matthew McGregor is campaigns director of Hope not Hate.

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