Saudi: Ship With 151 Migrants Rescued off Libya Docks in Sicily

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE SAUDI NEWS AGENCY ASHARQ AL-AWSAT)

 

Ship With 151 Migrants Rescued off Libya Docks in Sicily

Sunday, 3 November, 2019 – 12:30
A migrant hugs a rescuer aboard the Alan Kurdi rescue ship, before stepping into the port of Taranto, Italy, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019. AP
Asharq Al-Awsat
An Italian offshore supply vessel has brought 151 migrants to Sicily after rescuing them in waters off Libya a day earlier.

The Asso Trenta docked Sunday at Pozzallo with the migrants.

It wasn’t immediately known if they would stay in Italy or be distributed among other European Union countries, the Associated Press reported.

Hours earlier, a German charity’s rescue boat, Alan Kurdi, had disembarked 88 migrants at Taranto on the Italian mainland.

Under an EU-brokered deal, 67 of them will go to four other countries, while the others will stay in Italy.

A Taranto official, Gabriella Ficocelli, told the Italian news agency ANSA the migrants included five unaccompanied minors who were “tired and tried by the voyage.”

They disembarked eight days after being rescued in the Mediterranean Sea from Libya-based traffickers’ un-seaworthy vessels.

Israel actively pushing Palestinian emigration from Gaza, official says

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE TIMES OF ISRAEL)

 

Israel actively pushing Palestinian emigration from Gaza, official says

Senior official says Jerusalem looking for other countries to take in emigres, willing to let Gazans use Israeli airport to leave

Palestinians wait to travel to Egypt through the Rafah border crossing in the southern Gaza Strip, on May 18, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)

Palestinians wait to travel to Egypt through the Rafah border crossing in the southern Gaza Strip, on May 18, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)

KYIV, Ukraine — Israel is actively promoting the emigration of Palestinians from the Gaza Strip, and is working to find other countries who may be willing to absorb them, a senior Israeli official said Monday.

Israel is ready to carry the costs of helping Gazans emigrate, and would even be willing to consider allowing them to use an Israeli air field close to Gaza to allow them to leave for their new host countries, the official said, apparently referring to air force bases deep inside Israel.

The senior official, in Ukraine as part of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s delegation to Kiev, spoke on condition of anonymity.

More than 35,000 Gazans left the Strip in 2018, the official said, not including those who left but later returned.

“That’s a pretty high number,” the senior official said.

According to the official, European and Middle Eastern countries had been approached by Israel to accept Gazans who want to leave the Strip, but none had agreed to absorb them.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Sara Netanyahu at Ben Gurion Airport on August 18, 2019 (Amos Ben Gershom / GPO)

The official said the National Security Council had been spearheading the effort, with Netanyahu’s blessing, for about a year.

The program has been discussed in the security cabinet several times, the official said.

The National Security Council has recently spoken to European leaders and even countries in the region, asking if they were ready to accept Palestinians who want to leave the Strip, he said. So far, no country has agreed to absorb them, though. However, an “independent emigration” continues by those Gazans who manage to find host countries on their own, the official said.

There was no immediate reaction from Palestinian officials to the Israeli efforts.

The Hamas terror group — which took over Gaza by force in 2007, leading Israel and Egypt to impose a blockade — has imposed measures to stem the tide of emigration, according to a report by the Haaretz daily in May.

Gaza shares one tightly controlled civilian crossing with Israel, generally only used for humanitarian cases. Most Gazans leave the Strip via the Rafah crossing with Egypt, which is only opened sporadically.

While the crossing is intended for brief trips out of the beleaguered enclave, many residents — mainly young and educated — use the Rafah crossing as an opportunity to escape permanently, usually seeking refugee status in Europe.

Palestinians wait to travel to Egypt through the Rafah border crossing in the southern Gaza Strip, on September 26, 2018. (Said Khatib/AFP)

Youth unemployment in Gaza is at 70 percent, according to the World Bank, which says the main cause is the blockade of the Strip.

Israel says the blockade is necessary to restrict Hamas’s import of weapons and other materials it could use to attack Israel. Rights groups argue the measures amount to collective punishment of the roughly two million residents.

An Islamist movement that openly seeks Israel’s destruction, Hamas has fought three wars with the Jewish state since 2008 and has launched thousands of rockets at Israeli cities, as well as incendiary balloons and kites carrying explosive devices that since last summer have burned large swaths of land.

Times of Israel staff and agencies contributed to this report.

READ MORE:

Trump Targets Legal Immigrants Who Rely on Food Stamps and Other Aid

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE NEW YORK TIMES)

 

Trump Rule Targets Legal Immigrants Who Rely on Food Stamps and Other Aid

Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II, the acting director of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, said the rule would focus on legal immigrants who rely on public programs. It is scheduled to go into effect in 60 days. Credit T.J. Kirkpatrick for The New York Times

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration will penalize legal immigrants who rely on public programs, such as food stamps and government-subsidized housing, as part of a sweeping new policy to slow legal immigration into the United States and reduce the number of immigrants who are granted permanent legal status.

The move will have the greatest impact on poor immigrants who are living in the country legally and are receiving public benefits from the government, forcing them to make a choice between accepting financial help and living and working in the country legally. It will probably not affect immigrants who already have green cards.

The United States wants immigrants who can support themselves, according to the rule, not those who “depend on public resources to meet their needs,” according to the new rule.

The regulation, which is scheduled to go into effect in 60 days, will provide the Trump administration a powerful new tool to narrow the demographic of people who come to live and work in the country.

Immigration advocates have pledged to sue the administration in an attempt to block the new regulation from going into effect. Tens of thousands of people opposed the rule in a public comment period over the past several months.

The regulation, also known as the public charge rule, was published in the Federal Register Monday morning with the following acknowledgment: “While some commentators provided support for the rule, the vast majority of commentators opposed the rule.”

The rule has been the top priority of Stephen Miller, the architect of President Trump’s immigration agenda, who views it as the most significant change to regulations that had encouraged migrants to come to the United States.

Mr. Miller has repeatedly pushed administration officials to finish the rule, at one point telling colleagues that he wanted them to work on nothing other than the public charge rule until it was completed.

Some officials, including L. Francis Cissna, the former director of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, had resisted the rush to finish the rule, drafts of which were several hundred pages long and very complicated.

But Mr. Cissna was forced out of his position earlier this year and replaced by Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II, a former attorney general in Virginia and an immigration hard-liner who shares Mr. Miller’s view that immigrants are a drain on taxpayer dollars.

Trump’s Nationwide Immigration Raids Fail to Materialize

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF NPR)

 

Trump’s Nationwide Immigration Raids Fail to Materialize

Hundreds of people march in New York in opposition to the Trump administration’s plans to continue with raids to catch immigrants in the country illegally in Queens on Sunday.

Julius Constantine Motal/AP

President Trump’s threatened roundup of undocumented immigrant families this weekend that sent migrants in many communities on edge showed few signs of materializing on Sunday, the second time rumors of a large-scale immigration enforcement operation failed to come to fruition.

Instead, in the cities where rumors of mass raids swirled, many immigrants stayed inside their homes, as jitters turned typically vibrant migrant markets and commercial corridors eerily quiet.

Immigrant advocates across the country, meanwhile, took to the streets to demonstrate in protest of the promised roundup.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement would not confirm any arrests, nor would immigrant rights activists.

“The ACLU has not heard reports of any raids today,” Ruthie Epstein, the American Civil Liberties Union’s deputy director for immigration policy, told NPR.

Before Sunday, there were weekend reports of attempted arrests by ICE in New YorkNew Jersey and Chicago, where The New York Times reported that a mother and her daughters were apprehended but the family was immediately released. But those actions appeared to be part of routine enforcement activity, not connected to a massive raid operation.

Still, fears of ICE catching migrants by surprise sent many into hiding on Sunday.

In Miami, one of the cities anticipating the crackdown on immigrants, a hush fell over a market usually buzzing with activity among immigrant merchants and shoppers.

“People are clearly hiding. If you look around, it’s the people who are working are basically the only people here. But the majority of our clients are immigrants. Some with papers, others with no papers, but they are all scared,” Yohanna Gomez, a Honduran immigrant who runs a Central American stall at the market, told WLRN.

A similar scene played out in in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park neighborhood, typically bustling with immigrants from Latin America, Asia and the Middle East. But on Sunday, the streets were noticeably calmer and vendors seemed to have taken the day off due to the threatened raids.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Saturday that ICE had already attempted to make arrests in the city, but they were not successful.

Activists have been spreading the word to migrants to not open their doors if an immigration agents knocks, since they cannot use force to enter a residence.

In Chicago, another city where federal immigrants officials were expecting to conduct raids, streets in immigrant communities were scarcer than on a normal Sunday. Mayor Lori Lightfoot addressed the residents on the north side of Chicago before the raids were supposed to start.

“This is a community that has a diversity of people coming from all over the world,” she said. “There’s been a lot of rumors,” Lightfoot said. “Dangling this sword over peoples’ head is causing great harm and trauma to entire households, entire communities.”

The weekend operation was reportedly supposed to focus on immigrant families who have been sent final orders of removal after failing to appear in court. And top administration officials have argued that many of the estimated 2,000 migrants who fit this category have ignored requests to turn themselves in. President Trump originally set the nationwide raids for June before delaying the planned mass arrests in order to give Congress more time to hammer out changes to federal asylum law.

The American Civil Liberties Union, representing four immigration legal aid nonprofit groups, sued to blocks the raids on Thursday, arguing that while the Trump administration claims the migrants have been given an opportunity to appear in court, many never received the paperwork because of letters being sent to wrong addresses, or when they did arrive, the requests to appear did not contain specific dates and times.

And so, the lawsuit claimed, the families that were expected to be targeted have never received proper notice of removal and did not have their day in court before an immigration judge.

“Unless this Court enforces that requirement, thousands of individuals could be deported without ever receiving a fair opportunity to appear before a judge, as required by the Due Process Clause and the immigration laws,” wrote lawyer Melinda LeMoine in the suit, which is pending a judge’s ruling.

WNYC’s Beth Fertig contributed to this report.

Mexico’s Foreign Minister Say No Such Deal Struck With U.S. (Trump Lying Again?)

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF CNN)

 

President Donald Trump on Monday afternoon continued to tease an unannounced agreement between the US and Mexico, despite the Mexican Foreign Minister’s declaration that there was no secret or outstanding deal between the two nations.

“We have an agreement on something that they will announce very soon. It’s all done. They have to get approval,” Trump told reporters Monday at the White House, noting that the approval would come from Mexico’s legislative body.
“They will get approval. If they don’t get approval, we’ll have to think in terms of tariffs,” he said.
Hours earlier, the President had tweeted, “We have fully signed and documented another very important part of the Immigration and Security deal with Mexico, one that the U.S. has been asking about getting for many years.”
In both cases, Trump did not offer details about what was contained in the alleged agreement.
Mexican Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard, one of the chief negotiators of the deal agreed to on Friday, suggested Monday that he was not aware of another deal.
“Aside from what I’ve explained there is no agreement of any kind, that has been made known,” he told reporters in Mexico City. “Everything I’ve been talking about was known since Friday.”
Asked about the existence of another agreement, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was ambiguous.
“As for other agreements, there were a number of commitments made. I can’t go into them in detail here, but each side was committed to a set of outcomes,” he told reporters Monday.
After days of negotiations in Washington, DC, the United States and Mexico on Friday reached an agreement to avert Trump’s tariff threat. As part of the terms of the joint statement, Mexico will take “unprecedented steps” to increase enforcement to curb irregular migration, including the deployment of its National Guard throughout the country — giving priority to Mexico’s southern border — and individuals caught crossing into the US from Mexico seeking asylum will be “rapidly returned” to Mexico where they will await consideration of their asylum claims. The declaration also reiterates the countries’ commitment from last year, which emphasizes US support for development in Central America and southern Mexico.
However, both the US President and Secretary of State raised the prospect of tariffs again on Monday.
“We do not anticipate a problem with the vote but, if for any reason the approval is not forthcoming, Tariffs will be reinstated!” Trump tweeted about the alleged undisclosed deal. Pompeo noted that if sufficient headway is not made on the joint agreement, “there’s risk that those tariffs will go back in place.”
“And as we had these conversations … my counterpart Marcelo, we both understood that. It means that we’re got hard work to do over the coming days and weeks to deliver on those actual outcomes on the ground along our southern border,” Pompeo said, adding that they will evaluate whether progress has been made “literally daily.”

My Thoughts On The Economics Of Americas Slave Systems Past And Present

 

My Thoughts On The Economics Of Americas Slave Systems Past And Present

 

Here in the U.S. if you have gone through the education system and paid any attention to the History of the ‘Americas’ then you should know of our ‘Slave History’. When the Europeans started coming across the Atlantic Ocean looking for land and natural resources they knew they would have to have physical human help to harvest these resources. For the purpose of this letter to you today I am only going to speak of events I know more about so I am only going to be referring to events here in the U.S..

 

When the ‘Settlers’ started coming to North America (U.S.) there were those who sought more than a new start and a couple of Acres of land. Some of these folks had some money along with some big dreams of becoming even richer. Think about it for a moment, you or I are in possession of a thousand acres of prime land in the “New World” in the early 1500’s. We have money or we can get the money to create mass wealth for ourself, if we can find the people needed to do all of the physical labor for us. We would also want to get this labor as cheaply as is possible so that our initial outlay of cash is as low as possible. (This is a basic business reality that still exists today.) So, now, who can we get to do this work for us? Who is going to build our houses and stores for us, who is going to maintain them for us?

 

Our History Books tell us that first the wealthy white men who came to the New World to start their Plantations and the such tried to hire poorer white folks to do their bidding but they couldn’t get anywhere near enough whites who would agree to work for them. So, next they attempted enslavement of the Native Indian Folks, trouble was the ‘Indian Folks’ knew the land well and were always escaping, mostly never to be seen again. Next came ‘indentured’ White people. This system was set up to where if you were a poor white person in Europe and you wanted to leave there and go to the ‘New World’ you still needed to be able to get a ship to take you. If you had no money you tended to be out of luck, unless you would agree to be an indentured slave for a period of seven years. If I was rich and you were poor you would agree to work for me for the first seven years to work off your cost of the ‘passage.’

 

The reality of the situation on the ground was that the land owners couldn’t get enough White folks to accept this ‘indentured’ program. The land owners needed more workers and they needed workers more ‘acclimated’ to that type of hot hard work. So, their logical choice was to kidnap Africans as slave labor. Was this ethical or ‘right’ to do this, my opinion is absolutely not. The wealthy of the time obviously disagreed.

 

Modern day slavery: In the U.S. slavery is not a legal enterprise but it still does exist as an ‘underground’ reality especially in some of our biggest cities. Think about it for a moment, why would ‘Business people’ today still want slavery or at least as close to slavery as possible? The answer is simple, the less overhead you have, the more money you get to put into your own pocket. If I own a business here in the States the less I have to pay to get my product out the door, the better for me. Businesses are supposed to pay at least the Federal Minimum Wage of $7.25 per hour, which has not increased in the past 10 years. Companies want higher profits, employees want to be able to make a ‘livable’ wage. Why do you think that companies hire illegals? Simple they don’t want to pay the minimum wage so they hire or bring in ‘illegals’, pay them even less with no overtime pay, no benefits and if they gripe they get turned over to the authorities to be deported. To me, I personally believe that the world’s Stock Exchanges are the biggest single tool of businesses that is in its design made to starve the ‘lowest caste’ of people around the industrialized world.

 

I am going to finish this letter to you with why I believe it is best for the world’s businesses if they were all forced to pay livable wages to their employees. If a country has no middle class then they are not buying anyone’s products, not even basic things. If the workers don’t get paid enough to supply food and basic housing for their families or themselves they are not buying any other products either. If you are working full-time jobs, and in many cases more than one job and you don’t make enough for the existence of a minimal living you are not buying cars, furniture, clothes, medicine, or anything else. This is why Jesus said that “it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than it is for a rich man to enter into Heaven.” It is called greed folks, pure greed cares about no one but themselves.

 

Trump says ‘good time’ for a government shutdown if no money for border wall

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF CNN)

 

Trump says ‘good time’ for a government shutdown if no money for border wall

Washington (CNN) President Donald Trump told reporters at the White House Saturday that this would be a “good time” for a government shutdown if he doesn’t get funding from Congress for his border wall.

“I think probably, if I was ever going to do a shutdown over border security, when you look at the caravans, when you look at the mess, when you look at the people coming in, this would be a very good time to do a shutdown,” Trump said.
Trump added, however, that he didn’t think a shutdown would “be necessary, because I think the Democrats will come to their senses.”
Congress averted a government shutdown in September by passing a massive spending bill to fund a large portion of the government. The package did not, however, include money for Trump’s border wall, and Congress passed a shorter-term spending bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security, among other agencies, until December 7.
With the midterm elections now over, Congress is anticipating returning to a battle over funding for Trump’s promised border wall before the December deadline. Since most of the government is funded, Congress will be trying to avoid a partial shutdown.
Last month, House Speaker Paul Ryan predicted a “big fight” over border security on the horizon, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the GOP is “committed” to working to secure the funding the President wants for his signature campaign pledge.
Congress allocated $1.6 billion for border security in a spending bill enacted in March.
At a White House event in August, Trump said he was looking for about $5 billion for the wall to cover this fiscal year, which some Democrats have already said they would vote against.

Military border mission

Trump also said Saturday that the US military will remain at the US-Mexico border “as long as necessary,” suggesting that the 5,900 troops deployed to the border could stay there past December 15, the scheduled end of the mission.
The President also touted the “tremendous military force” assigned to the border mission in Texas, Arizona and California, lauding the troops for building “great fences.”
“They built great fences. They built a very powerful fence, a different kind of a fence, but very powerful. The fence is fully manned,” he said.
On Tuesday, CNN reported that the troops are expected to finish their assigned task of reinforcing border crossing points, largely with barbed wire, in the coming days. After that, it’s unclear what additional orders they will be given other than putting up more wire, two defense officials told CNN.
Trump ordered the troops to the border to deter a caravan of migrants making its way through Mexico from seeking asylum in the US. Trump has called the caravan a threat and has alleged that gang leaders and criminals are among the migrants.
A senior administration official told CNN that the use of troops at the border is “a paper tiger.”
“A total joke,” the official said. “Of limited operational utility, and a waste of our troops’ time. (Defense Secretary James) Mattis knows it. (Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen) Nielsen knows it. (White House Chief of staff John Kelly)knows it. But that battle was lost with the President. He was hell-bent on troops.”

Trump claims he can defy Constitution and end birthright citizenship

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF CNN)

 

Trump claims he can defy Constitution and end birthright citizenship

Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump offered a dramatic, if legally dubious, promise in a new interview to unilaterally end birthright citizenship, ratcheting up his hard-line immigration rhetoric with a week to go before critical midterm elections.

Trump’s vow to end the right to citizenship for the children of non-citizens and unauthorized immigrants born on US soil came in an interview with Axios released Tuesday. Such a step would be regarded as an affront to the US Constitution, which was amended 150 years ago to include the words: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States.”
Trump did not say when he would sign the order, and some of his past promises to use executive action have gone unfulfilled. But whether the President follows through on his threat or not, the issue joins a string of actions intended to thrust the matter of immigration into the front of voters’ minds as they head to polls next week.
A day earlier, the President vowed in an interview on Fox News to construct tent cities to house migrants traveling through Mexico to the US southern border. His administration announced the deployment of 5,200 troops to protect the frontier as the “caravan” continues to advance. And the President has warned of an “invasion” of undocumented immigrants if the border isn’t sealed with a wall.
Still, the threat of ending birthright citizenship amounts to another escalation in Trump’s hard-line approach to immigration, which has become his signature issue.
“We’re the only country in the world where a person comes in, has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States for 85 years with all of those benefits,” Trump said in an interview for “Axios on HBO.”
Several other countries, including Canada, have a policy of birthright citizenship, according to an analysis by the Center for Immigration Studies, which advocates for reducing immigration.
“It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. And it has to end,” he continued.
The step would immediately be challenged in court. Some of Trump’s previous immigration executive orders, including an attempt to bar entry to citizens from some Muslim-majority countries, came under legal scrutiny after a chaotic drafting process. At the same time, the President has derided his predecessor Barack Obama for taking executive actions to block some young undocumented immigrants from deportation, a step Trump said was a presidential overstep.
The American Civil Liberties Union slammed Trump’s proposal Tuesday morning.
“The president cannot erase the Constitution with an executive order, and the 14th Amendment’s citizenship guarantee is clear,” said Omar Jadwat, director of the ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project. “This is a transparent and blatantly unconstitutional attempt to sow division and fan the flames of anti-immigrant hatred in the days ahead of the midterms.”
The White House did not provide additional details of the planned executive order on Tuesday morning.
“It was always told to me that you needed a constitutional amendment. Guess what? You don’t,” he said, adding that he has run it by his counsel. “You can definitely do it with an act of Congress. But now they’re saying I can do it just with an executive order,” Trump said.
The President didn’t provide any details of his plan, but said that “it’s in the process. It’ll happen.”
The interview is a part of “Axios on HBO,” a new four-part documentary series debuting on HBO this Sunday, according to the news site.

(Humanity/Poem) The Wall

The Wall

(FROM 10-31-2017)

Why do we wish to build, is it to keep out

Was not Berlin’s Wall built to keep citizens in

The Great Wall of China can be seen from space

Decide what is real and what discriminates

Your reflection in the world’s looking glass

Does it show to them and us but one face

 

Division from the South, but not from the North

Do you not see your two faces shining

What do you think your Wall will facilitate

Is this Wall about safety and poor labor jobs

Or is it about your hate of language and race

 

The poor of the South you choose to lock out

Hungry, tired, and scared, they come to your gates

Looking for a safe place to build, to work and pray

You wish to build a higher Wall, are guard towers next

We tell them they have to wait at the River Great

 

From terrorist and drugs, you say your Wall will protect

You wall out your brother, your neighbor, your friends

How can you be so cold yet on Sunday you bend your knees

Do you not know, nor see, nor care that your actions offend

Unless you are Indian your family tree is not from here

 

Do you not think that terrorist or drugs are here

Pro’s take the safest routes like Heaven in the cold

Do not speak to me of family values ye hypocrite

As children and mothers die of hunger and disease

At the foot of this Wall you create from your own hate

 

 

(Humanity/Poem) The Wall

The Wall

(FROM 10-31-2017)

Why do we wish to build, is it to keep out

Was not Berlin’s Wall built to keep citizens in

The Great Wall of China can be seen from space

Decide what is real and what discriminates

Your reflection in the world’s looking glass

Does it show to them and us but one face

 

Division from the South, but not from the North

Do you not see your two faces shining

What do you think your Wall will facilitate

Is this Wall about safety and poor labor jobs

Or is it about your hate of language and race

 

The poor of the South you choose to lock out

Hungry, tired, and scared, they come to your gates

Looking for a safe place to build, to work and pray

You wish to build a higher Wall, are guard towers next

We tell them they have to wait at the River Great

 

From terrorist and drugs, you say your Wall will protect

You wall out your brother, your neighbor, your friends

How can you be so cold yet on Sunday you bend your knees

Do you not know, nor see, nor care that your actions offend

Unless you are Indian your family tree is not from here

 

Do you not think that a terrorist or a drug King Pin

Can’t enter your haven from the cold frozen North

Do not speak to me of family values ye hypocrite

As children and mothers die of hunger and disease

At the foot of this Wall you create from your hate