Headlines: 4th September 2015

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‘It’s a regular and terrifying scene in the occupied West Bank: heavily armed Israeli soldiers, often with large dogs, raid a Palestinian family’s home. They wake the children, arresting one or more of them.

This is what happened to Hamza Muayyad Shukri Hammad, 15, when his home in Silwad, a village near Ramallah, was invaded at 2am on Sunday.

As reported by the Arabic-language Quds news site, Hamza’s mother said that during the two-hour raid on her family’s home, Hamza and his 10-year-old brother, Bilal, were detained.

Soldiers raided Hamza’s room, ransacking it. They confiscated phones and smart devices from the home and a computer was deliberately smashed.’

Read more: Israeli night raids a routine terror for Palestinian children



‘Exclusive Victorian school Geelong Grammar expelled a student after he reported an assault by a staff member, the child sexual abuse royal commission has heard.

The witness, known as BIW, told the Royal Commission into Institutional Response to Child Sexual Abuse in 1989 he awoke one night in the boarding house to find a man fondling his genitals.

It is now known the man was boarding house assistant Philippe Trutmann, who was eventually convicted of sexually abusing 41 Geelong Grammar students in the 1980s and 1990s.

On Wednesday the inquiry was told Trutmann had gone through the school year book and identified boys he had abused.’

Read more: Australian child abuse royal commission: Geelong Grammar student expelled after reporting abuse, inquiry hears


A man walks inside HSBC headquarters in Hong Kong

‘Argentina’s central bank has ordered HSBC to remove its local CEO within 24 hours over his alleged failure to thwart terrorist financing, money laundering, and tax evasion.

In March, Argentinian authorities ordered HSBC to return a mammoth $3.5bn (£2.3bn) from an array of accounts nestled offshore.

Argentina had accused the scandal-ridden bank of assisting over 4,000 clients in evading taxes by funneling their illicit cash to secret bank accounts in Switzerland. But HSBC has consistently denied the allegations, insisting that it respects Argentine law.’

Read more: Argentina orders HSBC to sack local chief over terrorist financing, money laundering allegations



‘Less than three weeks after the EPA spilled more than three million gallons of toxic sludge into the Animas River in Colorado during its “cleanup” of an abandoned gold mine, the agency announced that contamination levels were “trending toward pre-event conditions” and lifted restrictions on the use of water from the affected areas downstream.

Can the agency be trusted at this point, particularly after last week’s revelations regarding the agency’s foreknowledge of a possible spill and its failure to heed the warnings or create a contingency plan?

The EPA’s shoddy handling of the entire affair has drawn sharp criticism, including accusations of gross neglect and attempts to cover up the magnitude of the environmental damage. The planning of the operation and the subsequent response to the spill on the part of the agency borders on the criminal, yet the Obama administration has remained strangely silent in the wake of the disaster.’

Read more: EPA claims Colorado rivers are now cleared of contamination, but can we trust them?



‘On August 18, the FDA approved a drug for the controversial condition of female hypoactive sexual desire disorder. The drug, flibanserin (to be marketed as Addyi), had previously been rejected twice by the agency due to low effectiveness combined with a high risk of serious side effects.

The agency’s turnaround was not based on the emergence of any new evidence to exonerate the drug. Instead, it was the result of a heavy lobbying campaign by drug maker Sprout Pharmaceuticals. By caving to lobbying pressure, experts have warned, the FDA has set a dangerous precedent.’

Read more: FDA approval of female libido pill could cause women to suffer ‘epidemic of adverse effects’



‘It’s no secret that fracking has the potential to cause horrendous human health problems, mainly due to the fact that it contributes to air and water contamination. The issue is simply one of common sense: Drilling deep into the earth and pumping endless amounts of chemically treated water at various pressure levels is an unnatural act that can yield devastating consequences. Despite the known health risks of the chemicals involved, in many instances, crop irrigation uses fracking wastewater from oil and gas drilling, as well as wastewater from municipal sewage treatment systems.(1)

Sounds gross, right? Yet that’s just what’s happening throughout California, where the process is used for crop irrigation – organic crop irrigation no less. So, organic food is being grown in the state with toxic, chemical-laden water. Thankfully, you can do your part to help put a stop to the mess by signing this Cornucopia.org petition.’

Read more: Sign the petition to ban fracking water and sewage from organic agriculture



‘A new cop on the Millis police force put a whole neighborhood on lock-down and initiated a massive manhunt when he fabricated a story to cover up his car accident. The officer, 27, said someone in a pickup truck opened fire on his vehicle as they passed in opposite directions on Forest Road.

“My cruiser’s been shot at. I’m at Forest Road. It’s going to be a dark maroon pickup,” the officer radioed to dispatch at 2:17 p.m.

As the story goes, he spun around to avoid the gunfire and seek shelter, whereupon his vehicle slammed into a tree and caught fire. The fire part is true, as the photo shows, but the gunshots were all his own.’

Read more: Cop Lied About Being Shot at to Cover Up His Car Crash – Massive Manhunt Ensued for Non-Existent Suspect

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