Posts Tagged ‘fox news’


June 9, 2015

Fox News on June 8, 2015, reported that a raid last month by American commandos on the home of an ISIS leader in Syria turned up a trove of valuable information, reportedly including the role played by the leaders’ wives, who sometimes acted as couriers in delivering information. Excerpts below:

Fox News has confirmed that laptops, computers and sim cards were recovered during the May 16, 2015, raid on the home of Abu Sayaaf. His wife, who was captured in the operation, is reportedly providing valuable information and is being interrogated by the Iraqis.

The trove also yielded important information on ISIS financing, contact networks and tactics.

According to the New York Times, information collected during the raid also shows how ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi stealthily conducts his business.


December 19, 2013

Fox News on December 17, 2013, reported that new stealth technology makes airplanes invisible not only to radar, it renders them hidden to the human eye as well…Excerpts below:

News reports from China last week touted the country’s work on a “cloaking” technology that uses a hexagonal array of glass-like panels to bend light around an object, obscuring it from view as though hidden by an invisibility cloak. Experts say the technology is legit – and not unlike American and European projects from the past few years.

“The general public … might not hear about how far the U.S. has really come, because it is and should remain classified,” firearms expert Chris Sajnog, a former Navy SEAL, told “Other countries are still playing catch-up — but they’re closing the gap.

China is hardly alone in seeking a way to evade radar systems and the naked eye. Here’s a few recent examples:

March 2013: The University of Texas used “mantle cloaking” to cancel out light waves that bounce off a shielded object.

Nov. 2012: Duke University disappeared a cylinder by guiding light around it before putting those photons back on their path.

Nov. 2012: Fractal Antenna Systems has a microwave invisibility cloak that can reportedly make an entire person disappear.
Oct. 2011: University of Texas tech uses the mirage effect, in which light rays are bent to produce a displaced image of distant objects or the sky.

But while classified work progresses, several public projects from universities and military supply companies show just how real this futuristic technology is.

– Chris Sajnog, former Navy Seal and firearms expert

“A few years ago we had a demonstration of these technologies here in San Diego,” Sanjog said in an email. “The mirrors currently being used are large and easily detectable, while the use of wavelengths is limited to a very narrow spectrum, i.e. visible light, but not radar or thermal. Also, both of these technologies only work well when viewed from one angle, and in warfare your security is nothing if it’s not 360.”

Major arms developers such as BAE Systems readily acknowledge work on this kind of technology, such as the Adaptiv program, which aims to hide armored vehicles.

“The U.S. military is among many who have expressed interest in Adaptiv, which could be transferred to other platforms, such as ships and helicopters,” said Mike Sweeney, a spokesman for BAE.

BAE’s technology, similar to what the Chinese are now touting, deploys sheets of hexagonal “pixels” that can change temperature very rapidly. On-board cameras pick up the scenery and display it on the vehicle, which can allow a moving tank to match its surroundings.

Research is concentrated mainly on the infrared spectrum, a pressing concern for the Swedish government group funding the work. But BAE has combined its pixels with technologies that camouflage other parts of the electro-magnetic spectrum to provide all-round stealth.

But most camouflage used by the military is not as high-tech as these tools. Take for example the “ghilie suit,” a garment designed to resemble heavy foliage and popular with the military and hunters.

“As a former lead instructor for the Navy SEAL sniper program, I’ve taught many of our current warriors the art of passive camouflage. For example, wearing a well-made ghillie suit in the proper environment can render its user virtually invisible, and this is a cloaking device that works 360, with no batteries needed,” Sajnog said.


September 19, 2013

Fox News on September 19, 2013, reported that US Senate Republican John McCain, one of the most vocal advocates for American military intervention in the crisis in Syria, is firing back after Russian President Vladimir Putin’s op-ed in the New York Times last week, in which the Russian chastised Americans for considering a military strike in Syria and slammed the notion of American exceptionalism. Excerpts below:

In an op-ed submitted to the Russian newspaper Pravda, McCain tells the Russian people that Putin “rules for himself, not you.”

He also says that although he has been characterized in the Russian media as “anti-Russian” over the years, he believes he is more pro-Russian than the Putin regime, which he says “misrules” its people.

McCain tells Russian citizens they deserve to live in a society where they can live freely and in accordance with the “inalienable rights” enjoyed by Americans under the Constitution.

“President Putin doesn’t believe in these values because he doesn’t believe in you,” McCain writes. “He doesn’t believe that human nature at liberty can rise above its weaknesses and build just, peaceful, prosperous societies. Or, at least, he doesn’t believe Russians can. So he rules by using those weaknesses, by corruption, repression and violence.”

McCain also addresses Putin’s alliance with Syrian President BasharAssad, saying Russians deserve a leader who will not fight on the side of a brutal dictator who carried out a chemical weapons attack against his own people. He says Putin’s allegiance to Assad is hurting Russia’s international stature.

“He is not enhancing Russia’s global reputation,” he writes. “He is destroying it. He has made her a friend to tyrants and an enemy to the oppressed, and untrusted by nations that seek to build a safer, more peaceful and prosperous world.”

McCain also says he believes in the Russian people’s ability to create a free and prosperous society that will fight for justice worldwide, without oppressive leaders like Putin to hold them back.

The op-ed came after Putin’s own widely discussed op-ed was published in the New York Times earlier this month., which considers itself the successor to the old Soviet newspaper Pravda, agreed to run McCain’s editorial in their September 19 edition, McCain’s press office said.


September 16, 2013

Fox News on September 13, 2013, published an AFP report on four Chinese ships entering waters around islands at the centre of a bitter dispute with Japan with no sign of a compromise seen between Asia’s two largest powers. Excerpts below:

The four Chinese coastguard vessels sailed into the 12-nautical-mile territorial waters around the Tokyo-controlled Senkaku islands — which Beijing calls the Diaoyus — the Japanese coastguard said.

The moves came after the first anniversary of Tokyo’s nationalisation of part of the chain. On the eve of the anniversary, a flotilla of eight Chinese ships entered the territorial band of waters.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on September 12 vowed to beef up his country’s defence capability amid the row with China.

Japan annexed what it says were unclaimed islands in 1895. It says China’s assertion of ownership only came after the discovery of resources in the seabed at the close of the 1960s.


September 15, 2013

Fox News on September 14, 2013, reported that at a news conference, Kerry said the USA and Russia and the teams of experts had reached a shared assessment” of the existing stockpile and that Syria must destroy all of its weapons. Excerpts below:

Kerry said, “we have committed to a standard that says, verify and verify.” The negotiations between the United States and Russia on securing Syria’s chemical weapons also are considered key to a resumption of peace talks to end the 2 1/2-year Syrian civil war.

The Obama administration welcomed the agreement but made clear that the use of military force is still an option.

“While we have made important progress, much more work remains to be done,” President Obama said.

“The United States will continue working with Russia, the United Kingdom, France, the United Nations and others to ensure that this process is verifiable, and that there are consequences should the Assad regime not comply with the framework agreed today. And, if diplomacy fails, the United States remains prepared to act.”

Pentagon spokesman George Little said: “We haven’t made any changes to our force posture to this point. The credible threat of military force has been key to driving diplomatic progress. And it’s important that the Assad regime lives up to its obligations under the framework agreement.

Senior U.S. officials in Washington have said they do not expect the U.N. resolution will ultimately include the threat of military force, considered how Russia has repeatedly blocked such language at the U.N.

Meanwhile, sensing perhaps that the threat of a U.S. strike is no longer imminent, Assad is publicly trying to strengthen his hand. In an interview with Russian television, he not only demanded the U.S. drop the threat of military action — he also said the Obama administration must stop arming the opposition.

The Obama administration decided months ago to start arming the Syrian opposition, after prior evidence of chemical weapons use. Media reports this week said the CIA, after a significant delay, has started to deliver small arms to the rebels.

Israel signed the Chemical Weapons Convention 20 years ago, but did not end up ratifying it. The Assad government now claims effectively to be a party to that weapons agreement. But Syrian government officials say they need a month to submit data on their stockpiles. Kerry objected to that time frame on Thursday, suggesting that was too long.

On September 13, Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, made a demand of his own, writing a letter to Kerry saying that bioweapons should also be included in the disarmament talks with Syria.

“I remain highly skeptical of Russia’s true intentions, but I believe omitting Assad’s bioweapons from any agreement would represent a gaping hole in the plan and would not adequately protect U.S. national security interests,” he said.

Others in Washington warned that Assad and Russia’s Vladimir Putin are turning the tables on the U.S. “They’re just kind of playing with us,” Rep. Buck McKeon, R-Calif., chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, told Fox News.

Kerry planned to travel to Jerusalem on September 15 to discuss the situation in Syria with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He will then go to Paris to see French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius and British Foreign Secretary William Hague on September 16 about the Syrian war. In Paris, he will meet separately with Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


September 10, 2013

Fox News on September 9, 2013, published an AP report that the The White House says 14 more nations have signed on to a statement blaming Syrian President Bashar Assad’s government for a chemical weapons attack and calling for a strong international response. Excerpts below:

That means the list has grown to 25 from the 11 — including the U.S. — who initially signed on. The statement was unveiled on September 6 at the Group of 20 economic summit in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Among the new nations announcing support are Germany, Denmark, Morocco, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, Estonia, Croatia, Hungary, Kosovo, Honduras, Romania, Latvia, Albania and Lithuania are also listed.


September 6, 2013

Fox News on September 5, 2013, reported that thousands of North Korean prisoners may have died after a notorious prison camp larger than the size of London was closed at the end of last year, a new report from a human rights group says. Excerpts below:

The Washington-based Committee for Human Rights in North Korea (HNRK) says Kim Jong Un consolidated the country’s prison camps after the death of his father in 2011, according to the London Daily Telegraph.

An account from a North Korean defector says Camp No. 22 in North Hamyong province once held an estimated 30,000 inmates, but numbers rapidly deteriorated to 3,000 amid a food shortage.

“North Korea’s 2009 currency devaluation (whereby camp authorities were reportedly unable to purchase food in markets to supplement the crops grown in the camps), combined with bad harvests, resulted in the death of large numbers of prisoners after 2010,” the HNRK wrote .

“The precipitous decline in the number of persons detained at Camp No. 22 requires an explanation,” the report states. “The closure… leaves several thousand former prisoners unaccounted for.”

Roberta Cohen, the co-chairman of HRNK, is calling for the International Red Cross to be allowed access to North Korea’s prison camps to investigate, The Telegraph reports.


August 29, 2013

Fox News on August 28, 2013, reported that Maj. Nidal Hasan, the Army psychiatrist who killed 13 people in 2009 in a shooting rampage at Fort Hood, was sentenced to death by a military jury after just two hours of deliberation. Excerpts below:

Hasan, who offered little defense, sat motionless as the jury president read the verdict. Hasan has said he acted to protect Islamic insurgents abroad from American aggression and never denied being the gunman. In opening statements, he acknowledged to the jury that he pulled the trigger in a crowded waiting room where troops were getting final medical checkups before deploying to Iraq and Afghanistan.

Hasan had one final chance Wednesday to give a closing argument before his case went to the jury, but he declined — continuing an absent defense that he has used since his trial began three weeks ago. The panel unanimously ruled that Hasan must forfeit all pay and allowances and be dismissed from the service.

The lead prosecutor, Col. Mike Mulligan, told jurors that history was full of instances of death in the name of religion. But he said it would be “wrong and unsupportive” to tie Hasan’s actions to a wider cause

Mulligan focused on the victims, insisting that Hasan deserved to be executed for the attack at the Texas military base that also wounded more than 30 people.

Hasan has been representing himself during the trial, and his lack of defense has caused problems with the military defense attorneys ordered to help him.

Any lawyer trying to save Hasan would have a daunting task. In two days of sentencing, prosecutors called widows, parents and other loved ones of the people Hasan killed. They offered a picture of their overwhelming grief and struggle to move forward after his attack. At least one juror appeared visibly emotional during parts of testimony.

Hasan rested his case shortly after more than a dozen widows, mothers, fathers, children and other relatives of those killed testified about their lives since the attack. They talked of eerily quiet homes, lost futures, alcoholism and the unmatched fear of hearing a knock on the door.

The same jurors who convicted Hasan last week had just two options: either agree unanimously that Hasan should die or watch the 42-year-old get an automatic sentence of life in prison with no chance of parole.

For nearly four years, the federal government has sought to execute Hasan, believing that any sentence short of a lethal injection would deny justice to the families of the dead and the survivors who had believed they were safe behind the gates of the Texas base.

And for just as long, Hasan has seemed content to go to the death chamber for his beliefs. He fired his own attorneys to represent himself, barely put up a defense during a three-week trial and made almost no effort to have his life spared.

Mulligan reminded the jury that Hasan was a trained doctor yet opened fire on defenseless comrades. He “only dealt death,” the prosecutor said, so the only appropriate sentence is death.

When Hasan began shooting, the troops were standing in long lines to receive immunizations and doctors’ clearance.

Thirteen people were killed and more than were 30 wounded. All but one of the dead were soldiers, including a pregnant private who curled on the floor and pleaded for her baby’s life.

The attack ended only when Hasan was shot in the back by an officer responding to the shooting. Hasan is now paralyzed from the waist down and uses a wheelchair.

The military called nearly 90 witnesses at the trial and more during the sentencing phase. But Hasan rested his case without calling a single person to testify in his defense and made no closing argument. Even with his life at stake during the sentencing hearing, he made no attempt to question witnesses and gave no final statement to jurors.

Hasan spent weeks planning the Nov. 5, 2009, attack, including buying the handgun and videotaping a sales clerk showing him how to change the magazine.

He later plunked down $10 at a gun range outside Austin and asked for pointers on how to reload with speed and precision.

When the time came, Hasan stuffed paper towels in the pockets of his cargo pants to muffle the rattling of extra ammo and avoid arousing suspicion. Soldiers testified that Hasan’s rapid reloading made it all but impossible to stop him. Investigators recovered 146 shell casings in the medical building and dozens more outside, where Hasan shot at the backs of soldiers fleeing toward the parking lot.


August 18, 2013

Fox News on August 17, 2013, published an AP report on Egyptian security forces storming a Cairo mosque after shooting at armed men firing down from a minaret, rounding up hundreds of supporters of the country’s ousted president who hid there overnight after violent clashes killed 173 people. Excerpts below:

Security officials said officers raided the Ramses Square mosque out of fear the Muslim Brotherhood again planned to set up a sit-in similar to those broken up Wednesday in assaults that killed hundreds of people. The Egyptian government meanwhile announced it had begun deliberations on whether to ban the Brotherhood, a long-outlawed organization that swept to power in the country’s first democratic elections a year ago.

Such a ban — which authorities say is rooted in the group’s use of violence — would be a repeat to the historic and decades-long power struggle between the state and the Brotherhood.

The assault on the al-Fath Mosque began overnight on August 16, as pro-Morsi protesters and armed men fled into worship center to avoid angry vigilantes and arrest. They piled furniture in the mosque’s entrance to block authorities and enraged anti-Morsi protesters from reaching them.

The mosque earlier served as a field hospital and an open-air morgue as a Brotherhood-called day of protests descended into violence. By daybreak August 17, security forces and armored personnel carriers surrounded the mosque and it appeared that military-led negotiations might defuse the standoff.

Then gunmen took over a mosque minaret and opened fire on the security forces below, the state-run MENA news agency said. The crowd around the mosque panicked as soldiers opened fire with assault rifles, the chaos broadcast live on local television channels.

Several security officials told The Associated Press that ending the standoff at the mosque was essential after receiving information that the group planned to turn it into a new sit-in protest camp. They spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.

Prime Minister Hazem el-Beblawi, who leads the military-backed government, later told journalists that authorities had no choice but to use force in the wake of recent violence.

“I feel sorry for valuable blood shed,” el-Beblawi said. However, he cautioned that there will be no “reconciliation with those whose hands are stained with blood or those who hold weapons against the country’s institutions.”

Signaling the Brotherhood’s precarious political position, Shawki said the government was considering ordering the group be disbanded. The spokesman said the prime minister had assigned the Ministry of Social Solidarity to study the legal possibilities of dissolving the group. He didn’t elaborate.

The Muslim Brotherhood [was] founded in 1928…

The fundamentalist group has been banned for most of its 85-year history and repeatedly subjected to crackdowns under Mubarak’s rule. While sometimes tolerated and its leaders part of the political process, members regularly faced long bouts of imprisonment…

The possible banning comes amid calls by pro-military political forces to brand the Brotherhood a “terrorist organization.”

“We are calling for declaring the Brotherhood as a terrorist group,” said Mohammed Abdel-Aziz, one of the leaders of the Tamarod youth movement that had organized mass rallies calling Morsi’s ouster.

The military-backed government has declared a state of emergency and imposed dusk-to-dawn curfew, empowering army troops to act as a law enforcement force. Top Brotherhood leaders, including Morsi, remain held on a variety of charges, including inciting violence.

On Saturday, Egypt’s Interior Ministry said in a statement that a total of 1,004 Brotherhood members were detained in raids across the country and that weapons, bombs and ammunition were confiscated from the detainees.

…authorities also arrested the brother of al-Qaida chief Ayman al-Zawahri, a security official said. Mohammed al-Zawahri, leader of the ultraconservative Jihadi Salafist group, was detained at a checkpoint in Giza, the city across the Nile from Cairo, the official said.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity as he wasn’t authorized to brief journalists about the arrest.


August 10, 2013

Fox News on August 9, 2013, published an AP report that a year before he was caught on an intercept discussing the terror plot that prompted this week’s sweeping closure of United States embassies abroad, al-Qaida’s top operative in Yemen laid out his blueprint for how to wage jihad in letters sent to a fellow terrorist. Excerpts below:

In what reads like a lesson plan, Nasser al-Wahishi provides a step-by-step assessment of what worked and what didn’t in Yemen. But in the rare correspondence discovered by the Associated Press, the man at the center of the latest terror threat barely mentions the extremist methods that transformed his organization into al-Qaida’s most dangerous branch.