British Conservative party bullying scandal escalates

This video from Britain says about itself:

Tory aide accused of sexual harassment expelled from the Conservative party

18 November 2015

Mark Clarke, a senior Tory aide accused of bullying and sexual harassment, has been expelled from the party for life.

A Conservative spokesman confirmed that Mr Clarke, who ran the Team 2015 election road-trip campaign, has had his membership cancelled as a result of a number of complaints against him.

The decision means Mr Clarke can never become an MP for the party.

The party has also confirmed that the Roadtrip campaign is no longer authorised by the Conservatives.

A police investigation into Elliot Johnson’s death is ongoing.

Mr Clarke was dubbed the ‘Tatler Tory’ after being named as a rising star in the party, but he later failed to win the Tooting seat where he ran against Sadiq Khan in 2010.

He was accused of masterminding a plot to blackmail Rob Halfon, a cabinet minister, over an affair the MP had with a Conservative campaigner.

The Minister was reportedly told of an alleged plan to film him and his lover leaving a club where they regularly met, in order to blackmail him with the pictures.

It is claimed that Mr Clarke threatened to take pictures of the pair in a bid to win himself a parliamentary seat in 2020. He previously failed to win the Tooting seat during the 2010 election.

The news forced Mr Halfon, 46, to call off the affair in May. He has a long term partner but is not married.

In a statement the well-respected Conservative MP said: “What I did was wrong, and I feel ashamed. I am not proud of myself. The most important thing to me is to continue to repair my relationship with my partner.”

He [Clarke] is also alleged to have attempted to trick the young female campaigner into taking drugs so that he could take pictures and use them against her.

She has reported Mr Clarke to Tory bosses, a source told The Telegraph. Mr Clarke denies all the allegations.

In a statement the party said: “In the light of information that has come to our knowledge this week, Mark Clarke’s membership of the Conservative Party has been cancelled for life. This means he cannot be a candidate or represent the Party in any way.”

From daily The Independent in Britain today:

Grant Shapps resigns: International development minister steps down amid Tory bullying scandal

The father of Elliott Johnson, the Tory activist who is believed to have killed himself, said his son would still be alive if the party had acted on complains about Mark Clarke’s behaviour

Samuel Osborne

4 hours ago

Grant Shapps, the Minister of State at the Department for International Development, has resigned after claims emerged he failed to act over allegations of bullying by a Tory campaigner.

In a resignation letter seen by the BBC, Mr Shapps told David Cameron “the buck should stop with me” over issues while he was Conservative Party chairman.

The Prime Minister earlier refused to offer his full support to Mr Shapps in the wake of the bullying allegations. He told reporters a statement would be made on the former party chairman today.

The father of Elliott Johnson, the Tory activist who is believed to have killed himself, said his son would still be alive if the party had acted on complains about Mark Clarke’s behaviour.

He and the Conservative MP Ben Howlett claim successive party chairs, including Grant Shapps and the incumbent Lord Feldman, have been aware of Mr Clarke’s reputation for years.

A letter emerged, written by former party chairman Sayeeda Warsi and sent to Mr Shapps, demanding action be taken against Mr Clarke. She said she never received a “satisfactory response”.

The letter appeared to contradict the Tory party‘s claim it was unable to find records of uninvestigated complains against him.

In his letter to the Prime Minister, Mr Shapps writes: “Over the past few weeks – as individual allegations have come to light – I hvae come to the conclusion that the buck should stop with me.

“Given the very serious nature of what has subsequently occurred and my role in appointing Mr Clarke, I cannot help but conclude that the only right course of action is for me to step down as a Minister in your government.” …

It had been reported Mr Clarke attempted to obtain photos of Conservative minister Robert Halfon leaving the East India Club with a woman who was allegedly his mistress, supposedly to blackmail the minister without portfolio.

Mr Halfon, who has a long-term partner but is not married, finished the affair in May, according to The Telegraph.

Mr Shapps courted controversy during his time as Tory party chairman.

He was forced to admit he had “screwed up” over his denial that he held a second job posing as a multi-millionaire under the pseudonym Michael Green while also an MP in 2006.

Somali cattle herder drone attack victims sue Dutch government

This video from the USA says about itself:

Drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen & Somalia include targeting rescuers and funerals

US Drone Strike statistics based on research by a team of journalists of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism:
(As of October 10, 2012).

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Somali drone attack victims want money from Dutch government

Today, 11:21

Two Somali nomads who in January 2014 were hit during a US drone attack are sueing in the Netherlands. For that attack, the US had access to information provided by the Netherlands, say their lawyers Göran Sluiter and Liesbeth Zegveld.

… One of them lost two of his daughters and a leg as well in the attack. The other person was injured. In addition, most of their livestock was killed.

The Ministry of Defence in The Hague rejects any responsibility in this case. In the Volkskrant daily says the ministry says it does not know on the basis of what information the US military went into action. “This is absolutely incredible,” says Sluiter. “The Netherlands knows very well for what the information is provided.”


That Dutch intelligence services share information with the US was revealed earlier in information of whistleblower Edward Snowden. Sluiter hopes that the Netherlands therefore will recognize that they are accomplices and will pay compensation. That chance is small, making court intervention necessary.

Sluiter and Zegveld chose a case in the Netherlands because the government in the USA in cases likes this hides behind state security claims. A case in the US because of that has no chance.

Anti-Planned Parenthood terrorism in Colorado, USA

This video from the USA says about itself:

Colorado Planned Parenthood Shooting Leaves 3 Dead

27 November 2015

The latest on the shooting near Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado. Police say three people are dead after a shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs. Those who died Friday include two civilians and one police officer from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs. The university is about 10 minutes away from the clinic and officials say the fallen officer responded to help city police with the shooting.

From the Huffington Post in the USA:

3 Dead After Gunman Opens Fire Inside Colorado Planned Parenthood

One officer and two civilians were killed, and 9 others were injured, during a lengthy standoff.

2 hours ago

A gunman is in custody after an hours-long standoff with police inside a Colorado Planned Parenthood. He has been identified as Robert Lewis Dear.

Reported to be a 59-year-old white male from North Carolina.

Sarcastic comments on the Huffington Post site:

Jerry Yuill:

Well, that is the oddest sounding Islamic name I’ve ever heard.

Dennis Hastings:

You… you mean… he’s NOT a Syrian refugee?

The article continues:

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Authorities took a gunman into custody Friday afternoon after an hours-long standoff inside a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs, Colorado, that left three people dead and nine others injured. …

Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains released a statement Friday while the attacker was still in the building, saying that their top priority “is the safety of our patients and staff.” …

“We share the concerns of many Americans that extremists are creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism in this country. We will never back away from providing care in a safe, supportive environment that millions of people rely on and trust,” the statement continued.

Four Planned Parenthood clinics were the targets of attacks in the past four months, including a Washington state clinic that was set on fire and one in California that was fire-bombed in a similar fashion.

Earlier this year, a series of heavily edited undercover videos claimed the family planning provider was harvesting fetal tissue after abortions and selling it. The group denies the charges and says it only donates fetal tissue for medical research when the patient requests it, and does not make a profit from the donation.

Congress is investigating Planned Parenthood’s practice of fetal tissue donation, and has so far found no evidence of wrongdoing.

Friday’s attack unfolded less than a month after a shooting rampage in Colorado Springs left four people dead, including the gunman.

This past Halloween, 33-year-old Noah Harpham fatally shot three people in the mountain town.

Nuclear weapons waste health catastrophe in St. Louis, USA

Manhattan Project sites in the United States and Canada. SOURCE: Wikipedia

By Gary Joad in the USA:

Manhattan Project fallout: Nuclear waste health catastrophe in St. Louis, Missouri

27 November 2015

Over the course of almost 70 years, former and current residents from the northern suburbs of St. Louis, Missouri have struggled with the devastating health consequences from a series of nuclear dump sites. Beginning in the mid-1940s, contractors working for the Manhattan Project deposited tens of thousands of tons of radioactive waste in St. Louis County, population 1.001 million as of 2013. Federal and state governments and agencies delayed even beginning cleanup activities for at least 40 years, constituting an appalling indifference to the health risks of the county residents and their families.

After the fatal results of radiation exposure for the seven decades became undeniable and were publicized, principally by the ill residents and their families of northern St. Louis County, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the US Army Corps of Engineers, assigned by the federal government to oversee the “solving” of the crisis, displayed no urgency whatsoever in alleviating health risks to area workers and residents. Meanwhile, this last summer the Corp of Engineers documented the presence of radioactive isotopes in ball fields, public parks, playgrounds and backyards of homes.

The Manhattan Project, founded in 1939 by the US government, initiated the research and development for the world’s first nuclear weapons, and resulted in the first and only military uses to date of atomic bombs, dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan on August 6 and 9, 1945. Over 100,000 civilians in both cities were killed instantly, and at least another 100,000 injured. Tens of thousands also suffered the long-term consequences of radiation exposure. Altogether, World War II resulted in the deaths of at least 60 million human beings.

Eventually the Manhattan Project grew to employ over 130,000 people. The cost of the atomic bomb development was almost $2 billion, or some $25 billion in 2015 dollars, most of which was used to build factories to produce fissile materials. More than 30 nuclear fuel development sites were spread across the United States, Canada and the UK.

At the outbreak of the war, Edward Mallinckrodt Jr. of G. Mallinckrodt & Co, a very old chemical and pharmaceutical firm in St. Louis, obtained a contract from the US government to purify large quantities of uranium ore imported to the city’s downtown processing plants and other locations around the city from mines in Utah and Colorado; Port Hope, Ontario and Radium City, Northwest Territories, Canada; and the Belgian Congo, West Central Africa.

Uranium ore importation to St. Louis, Missouri. Published in the St. Louis Post Dispatch. SOURCE: US Department of Energy

Initially, the St. Louis purified uranium was sent to the University of Chicago for the demonstration of the first nuclear chain reaction, at the so-called Chicago Pile-1 location, under the supervision of Enrico Fermi’s research group.

From 1942 to 1957, the Mallinckrodt Co. purified some 50,000 tons of uranium, which was in turn shipped to other US facilities for further refinement in the process of weapons manufacture. Fifty-five gallon drums and piles of nuclear waste were dumped in vacant lots and fields north of St. Louis at and near the World War II Naval Air Station, now Lambert St. Louis International Airport. In the postwar boom, these would become the highly populated suburbs of Berkeley, Hazelwood, Bridgeton, Florissant, Earth City and Weldon Spring. The radioactive debris was stacked outside and open to the elements.

In the 1960s, the federal government approved the sale of a few thousand tons of the nuclear waste materials to private companies, firms which loaded and shipped the material out of state.

Beginning in the late 1980s, after “responsibility” for removal and/or long-term storage of the material was shifted around by the federal government and Congress from one set of reluctant bureaucratic hands to another, the US Army Corp of Engineers was assigned the task of removal of the nuclear waste from the old St. Louis downtown sites, the St. Louis airport area and sites nearby. After almost 10 years and numerous studies, the removal of waste piles began in the late 1990s and was completed late in the last decade, after several hundreds of thousands of cubic yards of contaminated waste and soil was shipped by rail from St. Louis County to federally certified nuclear dump sites, principally in Utah.

The 19-mile-long Coldwater Creek begins just south of Lambert-St. Louis International Airport and courses beneath the runways to the north and northeast near the backyards of homes and businesses, emptying into the Missouri River near its confluence with the Mississippi River. In the decades since the dumping of nuclear waste at the airport and in the flood plains of the streambed, Coldwater Creek has been out of its banks numerous times. Over the many years, children played near and in the creek bottom, families moved into and out of the neighborhoods, all when few people knew of—let alone appreciated and understood—the risks of decades of exposure to uranium, thorium and radium isotopes.

Coldwater Creek illnesses and cancers in north St. Louis County, Missouri. SOURCE:

Since at least the early part of this century, persons who had grown up in, or had spent numbers of years in, northern St. Louis County became ever more aware of developing cancers in the area, including the number of persons with unusual tumors at a young age. An emergency department nurse currently living in Detroit, Michigan and who had spent her childhood near Coldwater Creek had a boy who was born with a fatal brain tumor. Another older St. Louis County resident lost both his father to a malignancy and his middle aged son to a rare form of colon cancer occurring in his appendix.

Another middle-aged woman with end stage lung cancer, who never smoked tobacco, was featured on CBS news recently with several of her neighbors, all of whom either suffered from malignancies or had family members who had cancer. Her backyard fronts Coldwater Creek.

In 2011, north St. Louis County residents established a website,, to spread the message of their common tragedies with a possible common origin.

The group compiled a list of illnesses with the use of a Facebook page, inviting present and former inhabitants of St. Louis County to report illnesses. As of this year, 45 cases of appendix cancer were reported (with a base incidence of less than one case in 100,000 persons), 448 autoimmune illnesses, 184 cases of brain cancer and tumors, 53 cases of Lupus, 84 cases of multiple sclerosis, 315 cases of thyroid illnesses and cancers. Cancers reported up to this year total 1,993.

In 1973, approximately 40,000 tons of radioactive waste were deposited in an unlined 1930s-era rock quarry at a 214 acre location, today called Westlake Landfill in Bridgeton, Missouri, also in northern St. Louis County. From 1979 to 2004, the majority portion of the same quarry was used as a municipal solid waste landfill, today managed by the for-profit Republic Services, the second largest “non-hazardous” solid waste management outfit in the US. In the world of Wall Street finance, it is praised for its swelling share price, attracting America’s richest investors, including Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.

Open air nuclear waste site in St. Louis County, 1950s. SOURCE: United States Army Corp of Engineers

The EPA designated the Westlake Landfill a Superfund cleanup site, although in an October 16 appearance on a CBS radio affiliate in St. Louis an EPA spokesman was reported to have minimized the health risk to county residents.

In 2010, Westlake Landfill was noted by residents, city officials and landfill workers to be burning, deep in the landfill, emitting noxious odors and smoke into the atmosphere. Numerous landfill gas extracting wells penetrate a thick and tough vinyl membrane cover deep into the solid waste mass of the landfill, the well heads of which have been gradually growing hotter, with temperatures and gas emissions confirming spreading of the subterranean fire towards the nuclear waste contained at the north end of the old quarry. As of two months ago, the fire was thought to be about 1,000 feet from the many tons of nuclear debris deposited at Westlake.

City, state and federal officials have been confronted this fall in jammed public meetings by angry and dismayed residents, who fear a landfill fire and/or catastrophic explosion resulting in a citywide dispersal of radioactive debris.

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster sued Republic Services and commissioned a landfill risk assessment study, which was completed and published in September.

Among the critical findings include the observation that Republic Services is severely over-pumping the gas extraction wells, resulting in an inflow of excessive levels of oxygen that is feeding and spreading the landfill underground fire, now burning for five years. The attorney general’s assessment included a recommendation to shut down the wells immediately to stop feeding the fires with air pumped in from the surface through air leaks in the vinyl cover. The study indicated that numbers of the wells have been excessively pumped as far back as 2007.

The study also noted that while hydrogen, a highly flammable gas, is not typically observed in landfill gas extraction operations, at Westlake Bridgeton LF, very high levels of up to 30 percent and more were confirmed routinely in scheduled gas samplings. In a dire historical warning, the study’s authors also expressly and explicitly reminded the Missouri attorney general and Republic Services of a catastrophic hydrogen explosion that occurred over New Jersey in May 1937.

The attorney general’s study notes:

“It is not unreasonable to anticipate that a much larger bubble (of hydrogen gas) could develop beneath the EVOH (vinyl membrane cover) in the event of a prolonged power failure …

H2 is a highly flammable and explosive gas. Many will recollect the explosion of the Hindenburg dirigible as a graphic reminder of the danger posed by hydrogen gas in bubbles. LFCI (Landfill Fire Control, Inc., the company consulted by the state of Missouri) believes that an emergency plan needs to be developed concerning safe work procedures around these bubbles if one does not exist currently.”

The study adds:

“With elevated temperatures and exposure to oxygen through the observed overdraw condition, the oxidation of char could result in rapid escalation of temperatures. In LFCI’s opinion this condition has the potential to result in a major subsurface fire. Combustion temperatures for char can exceed 1,500 degrees F. There is a strong possibility that such a fire event would result in the melting of the EVOH membrane cap. If not quickly contained, this would allow very rapid incursion of atmospheric air in the subsurface, and potentially, a rapid escalation of the fire. At that point it may prove extremely difficult and highly dangerous to achieve control of the fire due to the risk of equipment collapse.”

Since the Westlake quarry was never lined before landfill filling began in the 1970s, the liquid (leachate) material within the waste mass is of profound health concern for the water table of St. Louis, and for the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers a scant few thousand yards away.

The attorney general’s recent study notes that Westlake LF is highly polluted with arsenic at 7 times water quality guidelines, mercury at 6 times drinking water (DW) limits and chromium at 1.4 times. An even greater concern are the volatile organic species including benzene at 182 times DW limits and 1,4 dichlorobenzene 6.7 times DW limits. A record finding for the company doing the study for St. Louis, however, was acetone at 140mg/L. Elevated cancer rates are noted for populations exposed to acetone concentrations at 6mg/L.

Moreover, butanone was found at 8.7mg/L. The EPA issues a 10-day health advisory for a 10Kg child at 7.5/L concentration, and a lifetime advisory at 4mg/L.

Of further vital importance, the attorney general’s consultants, in their September 2, 2015 report, scientifically documented the off-site migration of both toxins and uranium isotopes from the Westlake LF.

The nuclear waste and health calamity in St. Louis, like the many others around the country and globe, comprises yet another cataloguing of capitalism’s crimes, of the global profit system that constitutes a social and environmental scourge on humankind. And as far as America’s Wall Street elite is concerned, the working population is so much disposable refuse.

Paris massacre of Algerians, 1961

This video about Franmce says about itself:

The 1961 Paris Massacre

The murder of hundreds of Algerian protestors was covered up by the French government for decades.

By Peter Frost in Britain:

The forgotten Paris massacre

Friday 27th November 2015

PETER FROST looks back to 1961 at another act of bloodshed on the streets of France’s capital

THERE can be no excuse for the brutal acts of terrorism in Paris recently.

Watching the recent TV coverage and reading the papers I kept coming across the phrase “this is the worst atrocity in France since WWII.” Sadly that simply isn’t true.

Let me take you back to October 1961. President Charles de Gaulle was working hard to establish his and France’s pre-eminent position in what was then called the Common Market, a predecessor of the EU founded in 1957.

Britain wouldn’t join until 1973.

The French industrial working class was led by a powerful Communist Party that had earned its reputation and support as the most effective resistance to the nazi occupation forces just a few years before. The Communists were fighting de Gaulle’s right-wing policies — and just as militant as French workers were French farmers.

On the streets of Paris and other French towns, Algerian immigrants were protesting and demanding independence for their north African homeland, which was then a French colony. It would win its freedom in 1962.

The more militant Algerians were organised in the Front de Liberation Nationale (FLN), the main political party in Algeria. It had a socialist programme and many supporters among the Algerian immigrant population in France.

Opposing them, often with great violence, was the ultra right-wing Organisation Armee Secrete (OAS). These were a group of disaffected army officers, soldiers, veterans of the Foreign Legion, rightist politicians and others determined to keep Algeria a French colony.

The OAS was a well-armed paramilitary organisation. They were happy to use murder and terrorism in their campaign. Their battle cry was “Algeria is French and will remain so.”

Predictably the Algerians in and out of the NLF fought back. They too brought violent protest and mass demonstrations to the streets.

And so the scene was set for what would be an even bigger massacre on the streets of Paris than that of recent days.

A FLN march of 30,000 unarmed Algerian Muslims demonstrated in central Paris against a racist curfew. Seven thousand police and special security forces armed with heavy riot clubs and guns attacked the march and hundreds of Muslims were beaten, shot, strangled and even drowned.

Thousands were rounded up and taken to detention centres around the city where there were more beatings and killings.

Accurate figures for deaths were never issued and the media, which was much more heavily controlled by the state at the time, hushed up and underplayed casualty figures and the events.

How many died? No-one knows for sure. Best estimates suggest more than 200, but later eyewitness reports over the years have indicated the number of victims could be very much higher.

Among those eyewitnesses were some foreign journalists who found their agencies and publications strangely reluctant to print their stories. Some reported piles of Muslim corpses “like piles of logs in a forest.”

They also reported seeing large numbers of drowned bodies floating in the River Seine, where crowds of demonstrators had been driven into the water by armed police. Bodies were being recovered downstream for weeks afterwards.

Thousands of Algerians were rounded up and brought to detention centres, where the violence against them continued. Scores of Algerians were murdered on the orders of senior police officers in the courtyard of the central police headquarters.

The head of Paris police at the time, and the man who ordered the attack on the peaceful march that ended in a massacre, was Maurice Papon. He advised his forces that there would be no action taken against them, however violent or illegal their acts.

Papon was a nazi. When Hitler occupied France he became a leading police officer in the Vichy government that collaborated with the nazi occupying forces.

After the war Papon also tortured prisoners as head of a police department in Algeria during the colonial war.

Rather than being brought to justice, de Gaulle awarded him the Legion of Honour. Papon was finally forced to resign in 1967 after the suspicious disappearance of Moroccan leader Mehdi Ben Barka.

That disgrace didn’t end his public career. Instead he entered parliament and de Gaulle made him a director of the Sud Aviation company, which created Concorde. He became an MP and a millionaire.

Finally in 1981 details about his WWII nazi past emerged in a satirical magazine. In 1998 he was convicted of crimes against humanity for his part in the deportation of more than 1,600 Jews to concentration camps.

He served only four years and was subsequently released from prison in 2002 on the grounds of ill health. He died in 2007.

Just like his WWII war crimes, Papon’s 1961 Paris massacre was largely covered up at the time.

The French press repeated official figures that only two and, later, five people had died in the demonstration.

Government-owned and controlled French TV showed Algerians being shipped out of France after the demonstration, but showed none of the police violence.

In Britain the Establishment media stuck to the official French government version, including lies that the Algerians had opened fire first.

A year later Algeria won its independence. As the French empire slowly crumbled, north African Muslim immigrants faced racism and ghetto living in France. They filled the low-paid anti-social jobs, and predictably resentment grew.

Generations of marginalisation and alienation provided fertile ground for fundamentalism to put down its evil roots.

Other parts of the old French empire have all been major targets for fundamentalist terrorist groups. Places such as Lebanon, where Beirut was once known as the Paris of the Levant; the Sahara state of Mali, when the Foreign Legion held sway in places such as Timbuktu; and Tunisia’s tourist beaches.

There is an old saying: “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Sadly it seems to be more relevant every day.

Since the November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris, new revelations have provided more evidence that Islamist elements who launched the attack were well known to the intelligence services before the attack that killed 130 people: here.