Browsing: The Police State

‘While U.S. President Donald Trump was on a visit to France for the national Bastille Day celebrations in Paris, clashes in the capital’s migrant-dominated suburbs saw 13 security force members wounded and 897 cars burned.

The Interior Ministry said 368 people were placed in custody for riots and violence on the nights of 13 and 14 July — scenes which have become a regular occurrence in multicultural urban neighbourhoods of Paris at the start of Bastille Day celebrations each year.

“It is thanks to the large mobilisation of our security forces that there has been a significant reduction of the number of violent incidents, especially those involving fighting on the streets, committed on the fringes of the July 14 festivities,” stated Pierre-Henry Brandet, the spokesman for the Ministry of the Interior.

“Our security forces have been the target of intolerable attacks in the course of several episodes of urban violence,” he said, reporting that 13 police officers and soldiers were wounded in the clashes.’

Read more: During Trump’s Paris Visit Migrant Suburbs Saw 900 Cars Burned in Scenes of ‘Intolerable Urban Violence’

‘A former pastor has been sentenced to eight weekends in jail for jury tampering after distributing pamphlets on a sidewalk in front of a Michigan courthouse. The man argued he was exercising his free speech rights while advocating for jury nullification.

On Friday, District Judge Kimberly Booher ordered Keith Wood to serve eight weekends in jail, six months of probation and pay fines, according to WMXI.

The prosecution asked the judge to sentence Wood to 45 days in jail, but defense attorneys argued that was inappropriate since Wood has no prior criminal record, is self-employed and he is the only financial supporter for his wife and eight children.

Booher agreed to a shortened sentence, but said it would be inappropriate for him not to serve jail time. “He’s going straight to jail today,” Booher said, according to WMXI.’

Read more: Michigan man gets jail time for distributing jury nullification flyers outside courthouse

‘When I first went to Palestine as a young reporter in the 1960s, I stayed on a kibbutz. The people I met were hard-working, spirited and called themselves socialists. I liked them. One evening at dinner, I asked about the silhouettes of people in the far distance, beyond our perimeter.

“Arabs”, they said, “nomads”. The words were almost spat out. Israel, they said, meaning Palestine, had been mostly wasteland and one of the great feats of the Zionist enterprise was to turn the desert green.

They gave as an example their crop of Jaffa oranges, which was exported to the rest of the world. What a triumph against the odds of nature and humanity’s neglect.

It was the first lie. Most of the orange groves and vineyards belonged to Palestinians who had been tilling the soil and exporting oranges and grapes to Europe since the eighteenth century. The former Palestinian town of Jaffa was known by its previous inhabitants as “the place of sad oranges”.

On the kibbutz, the word “Palestinian” was never used. Why, I asked. The answer was a troubled silence.’

Read more: Palestine’s Refusal to Comply ~ By John Pilger

‘The Israeli army will put thousands of extra troops on alert in the West Bank ahead of Friday prayers at Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, fearing that clashes over security measures implemented at the holy site will spread.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) announced on Thursday that it would be putting five extra battalions on call in the West Bank, adding that they could be deployed if backup is needed, the Jerusalem Post reported.

The army fears that clashes could erupt on Friday, as Muslims make their way to the Temple Mount for prayers. Jerusalem police will also be reinforced by thousands of special police forces, according to Haaretz.

It comes after the mufti of Jerusalem and the heads of the Waqf called on all imams in the city and surrounding areas not to hold Friday prayers in their mosque, but to come to the holy site – known as Ḥaram al-Sharif (Noble Sanctuary) to Muslims – instead.’

Read more: Thousands of extra IDF troops put on call in West Bank amid Temple Mount tensions

‘Overzealous council officials have come under fire after a five-year-old girl was given a £150 fine for setting up a homemade lemonade stall close to her home.

The young girl burst into tears and told her father ‘I’ve done a bad thing’ after enforcement officers read her a legal letter and issued the fine.

Stunned father Andre Spicer said his daughter had set up the stall in Mile End, east London, while thousands of music fans were on their way to the Lovebox Festival at the weekend.

Tower Hamlets Council has since promised to cancel the fine, issued for trading without a permit, and apologised for the debacle.

Mr Spicer, a professor at City University, told the Evening Standard: ‘It’s not like she was trying to make a massive profit, this is just a five-year-old kid trying to sell lemonade.’

Read more: Girl, five, bursts into tears when council officers close down her 50p-a-time lemonade stand and fine her £150 for trading without a permit

Wherever Wray goes, it seems, bad guys get away unscathed while scapegoats suffer the consequences

‘”If I am given the honor of leading this agency, I will never allow the FBI’s work to be driven by anything other than the facts, the law, and the impartial pursuit of justice. Period. Full stop. My loyalty is to the Constitution and the rule of law. They have been my guideposts throughout my career, and I will adhere to them no matter the test.”

— Attorney Christopher Wray, Congressional testimony, July 12, 2017

It’s hard to get better lip service than that. In his opening statement, Christopher Wray, nominated by President Trump to be the next director of the FBI, pretty much said all the right things to the Senate Judiciary Committee on July 12. It’s even possible that Wray’s testimony could turn out to be true. But doubt is hard to allay in the context of his career to date.’

Read more: FBI Nominee Christopher Wray Sure Looks Dirty

‘Donald Trump plans to turn the federal government into a much more militaristic and paramilitary policing organization while making drastic cuts in the civilian workforce, including non-uniformed law enforcement, a July 7 budget memo shows.

The memo says that the budget for our government’s 2019 fiscal year, which begins on Oct. 1, 2018, “will build on the ambitious plans laid out in the president’s first budget” especially through “reducing the federal civilian workforce.”

No major news organization has reported on the three-page directive from Mick Mulvaney, Trump’s director of the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

Mulvaney is a Tea Party Republican from South Carolina who opposes any restrictions on guns and opposes any federal spending on Planned Parenthood. In 2015, the former Congressman was willing to shut down our federal government to block all funding for Planned Parenthood.’

Read more: Trump’s Budget Shows How He Is Building a Police State

‘Shocking allegations of inmates being denied personal hygiene items such as toilet paper, soap and toothbrushes are emerging from a Florida legislator’s visits to some correctional facilities in the Sunshine State.

State Representative David Richardson (D-Miami Beach) began his tour by visiting the Baker Correctional Institution in Northern Florida in January. There, he found inmates without toilet paper and toothbrushes, so he requested the warden to open a storage unit only feet away to distribute hygiene products to more than 50 inmates.

“It is behavior that is intended to dehumanize them, treating them like an animal,” he told the Miami Herald.

The warden at Baker was “embarrassed,” Richardson said.

The representative then complained to the Florida Department of Corrections. After the complaint, officials “were apologetic and put out an all-points bulletin that this was wrong,” according to ABC News.’

Read more: ‘Treating them like animals’: Florida inmates denied toilet paper and toothbrushes

‘Protesters have marched in the Moroccan city of al-Hoceima defying a government ban.

The Thursday protest march, which was held amid tight security measures and the governing coalition’s appeal for peace, is the latest in a series of demonstrations that have shaken the country’s northern Rif region.

Organizers of the protest, who had dubbed the demonstration a “million-man march”, had vowed to go ahead with the protest rally despite the tight restrictions imposed by authorities.

Earlier, media had reported a significant police presence around Hoceima, which is the main port in the Rif, with police preventing people from entering the town.

Rif residents have long complained of neglect and marginalization by the central government.’

Read more: Moroccans in Hoceima hold rally amid police crackdown