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by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu May 10th, 2012 at 05:34:14 PM EST
Deadly Syria bombings draw international condemnation - SYRIA - FRANCE 24

AFP - Two suicide bombers killed at least 55 people and wounded nearly 400 in the Syrian capital Damascus on Thursday, authorities said, in the deadliest attacks of the country's 14-month uprising.

The government and the opposition traded blame, with Syria's foreign ministry, in a letter to UN chief Ban Ki-moon hours after the attacks, saying they were the work of "terrorists" armed and funded by foreign organisations and media.

The blasts during morning rush hour left an apocalyptic scene of destruction and further put into question a UN-backed ceasefire that has failed to take hold since it went into effect on April 12.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu May 10th, 2012 at 05:44:30 PM EST
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U.S. Treasury Claim of Iran-Al-Qaeda "Secret Deal" Is Discredited - IPS ipsnews.net
WASHINGTON, May 10, 2012 (IPS) - The U.S. Treasury Department's claim of a "secret deal" between Iran and Al-Qaeda, which had become a key argument by right-wing activists who support war against Iran, has been discredited by former intelligence officials in the wake of publication of documents from Osama bin Laden's files revealing a high level of antagonism between Al-Qaeda and Iran.

Three former intelligence officials with experience on Near East and South Asia told IPS they regard Treasury's claim of a secret agreement between Iran and Al-Qaeda as false and misleading.

That claim was presented in a way that suggested it was supported by intelligence. It now appears, however, to have been merely a propaganda line designed to support the Barack Obama administration's strategy of diplomatic coercion on Iran.

Under Secretary of Treasury David S. Cohen announced last July that the department was "exposing Iran's secret deal with Al-Qaeda allowing it to funnel funds and operatives through its territory." The charge was introduced in connection with the designation of an Al-Qaeda official named Yasin al-Suri as a terrorist subject to financial sanctions.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri May 11th, 2012 at 01:25:57 AM EST
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I can't think too many people outside the Iran-haters who really believed it, such an alliance was always unlikely.

And it's not as if the US Govt haven't lied about middle east intelligence before...

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Fri May 11th, 2012 at 02:54:26 AM EST
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But they did go straight to war on the basis of it.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri May 11th, 2012 at 04:49:19 AM EST
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With Iraq the tale was on the shelf but wasn't the clincher in the disinfo battle. It was WMD's that saved the day- and a desperate need to get on with the show lest mounting skepticism compromise the go-ahead.
by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Mon May 14th, 2012 at 04:11:11 PM EST
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Algerian elections offer gradual change - Africa - Al Jazeera English

Algeria's government has announced a relatively high turnout for Thursday's legislative polls that contrasts starkly with the widespread voter mistrust and disaffection that marked the campaign.

Interior Minister Daho Ould Kablia, who is overseeing the election, said he would announce the results at 3:00 p.m. (1400 GMT) on Friday. Earlier, he said turnout was 42.9 per cent, not the mass abstention many people had been expecting.

The government had earlier said a turnout of 45 per cent would be a "success" and President Abdelaziz Bouteflika made a plea to young Algerians to at least cast blank votes rather than abstaining.

But many Algerians are deeply suspicious of official figures.

Voter participation is the statistic of most concern to the authorities. These elections would be different, officials promised, but there were many calls for boycotts in the lead-up to the vote.

The ruling National Liberation Front has dominated the country's political life since the country won independence from France 50 years ago, but has been forced to offer room to a broader range of voices after uprisings toppled governments in other North Afican countries, including Tunisia, Egypt and Libya.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri May 11th, 2012 at 01:30:59 AM EST
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