Tag Archives: War on Terror

ISIS Threatens to Come to Rome… Traffic Permitting

 ISIS to Rome

The Italian government is on high alert after the Islamic State threatened to conquer Rome – with Allah’s permission, of course.

A recent video that appeared to show the beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in Libya included balaclava-clad extremists armed with an ominous message.

“Today we are south of Rome,” one masked militant said. “We will conquer Rome with Allah’s permission.”

Since Libya is just a stone’s throw across the Mediterranean Sea from Italy, Italian authorities are playing it safe by deploying 5,000 troops to guard embassies and monuments across the country. I mean, if thousands of refugees can make it across every year (minus a few drownings…), how hard can it be? Which is exactly why Italy’s Interior Minister Angelino Alfano urged NATO to intervene “for the future of the Western world,” adding “ISIS is at the door. There is no time to waste.”

But the Italian people aren’t too worried about the impending threat – because they know how bad Italian traffic is.

Using the Twitter hashtag “#We_are_coming_o_Rome”, Italians have responded to the Islamic State with warnings about traffic, bureaucratic corruption, and a few restaurant recommendations – because why not?

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Besides, could ISIS really do more damage in Rome than Dutch football fans?

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Rupert Murdoch: Moslems Must Destroy Their Growing Jihadist Cancer

Rupert Murdoch

As France mourns the 17 people who died in last week’s attacks on Charlie Hebdo, Fox CEO Rupert Murdoch decided to give his two cents on the matter.

Referring to the terror attacks in Paris last week, Murdoch tweeted “Maybe most Moslems peaceful, but until they recognize and destroy their growing jihadist cancer they must be held responsible.”

And just in case that wasn’t offensive enough, he added in a separate tweet, “Big jihadist danger looming everywhere from Philippines to Africa to Europe to US. Political correctness makes for denial and hypocrisy.”

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First, spelling Muslim as Moslem is a great way to show people you’re an old, out-of-touch racist. Second, if Rupert Murdoch thinks all Muslims have to apologize for terrorism, does this mean that all white people have to apologize for Rupert Murdoch?

Charlie Hebdo All Is ForgivenThe editors over at Charlie Hebdo have a slightly different take on the issue. The next cover of Charlie Hebdo, due to be published on Wednesday, features Muhammad holding a sign reading, “Je suis Charlie.” The tagline: “All is forgiven.”

Editor-in-chief Gerard Biard told reporters:

“We are happy to have done it and happy to have been able to do it, to have achieved it. It was tough. The front page… was complicated to put together, because it had to express something new, it had to say something relating to the event that we had to deal with.”

Zineb El Rhazoui, a surviving columnist at Charlie Hebdo magazine, said the cover was a call to forgive the terrorists who murdered her colleagues last week, saying she did not feel hate towards the gunmen and urged Muslims to accept humour.

The magazine plans to print 3 million issues just one week after the attack on its offices which left 12 people dead, including the satirical magazine’s editor and four other cartoonists.

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Terrorists Do NOT Like Cartoons…. And Other News

Cartoons

12 people have been killed in a shooting incident at the Paris office of French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, best known for its controversial cartoons.

Four of France’s best-known satirical cartoonists, including the magazine’s editor, were among the dead. A major manhunt has now been launched in Paris for three gunmen seen armed with AK-47s and pump-action shotguns. According to eye-witnesses the gunmen were yelling “Allahu Akbar”and “the Prophet is avenged.” Apparently the gunmen took issue with the magazine’s controversial series of cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed. A killing rampage over some cartoons? Seems like an appropriate reaction… if you’re insane. President Francois Hollande called it a “cowardly murder” and declared a day of national mourning on Thursday. “Nothing can divide us, nothing can separate us,” Hollande said in a brief but defiant address. “We will win. Nothing will make us renounce our determination. Long live the republic. Long live France.” BBC News

Smoking ISISA top figure in Islamic State’s self-declared police force, known for their numerous beheadings, was found beheaded in eastern Syria with a cigarette placed in his mouth and a message written on his body. The Egyptian national’s body was found with signs of torture along with the message “This is evil, you Sheikh”. Residents in areas controlled by Islamic State have said the group has banned smoking in public. “We do not know whether Islamic State killed him or whether it was local people or other fighters,” said Rami Abdulrahman, who runs the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Either way, someone was clearly displeased with the smoking ban. Lesson learned: you can behead and stone as many people to death as you want, just don’t come between a man and his cigarette. Globe and Mail

IraqA Syrian street magician was reportedly beheaded by Islamic State group militants after his performances were deemed to be insulting to God. The street magician, who was known as “Sorcerer,” was a staple in Raqqa until was whisked away by ISIS militants and later beheaded in a public square. According to ISIS, the street magician’s tricks were anti-Islamic because they were performed through “illusions and falsehood” – plus the Koran forbid the tricks because the time people spent captivated by them could have been better used by going to a mosque. No magic and tons of beheadings? Hmm. I’m starting to think these ISIS guys are dicks… IB Times

Uber GayPDA is a-okay unless you’re gay? Uber is under fire this week after a gay couple accused an Uber driver of throwing them out of the cab for kissing and cuddling during a New Year’s Eve ride in London. The couple claim they were asked to get out of the car and when they asked why, the driver said: “I take gays but they don’t normally do this.” Basically, the driver is fine with gays…. unless, of course, they do something gay. Uber has since suspended the driver as an investigation is pending and released a statement: “Uber does not tolerate any form of discrimination either by our partner drivers or towards our partner drivers.” Business Insider

GilbertsWarning: don’t spoil your children – or they might end up killing you. The founder of a multimillion-dollar hedge fund was found dead from a gunshot wound to the head in his upscale Manhattan home on Sunday. The 70-year-old president of Wainscott Capital Partners, had a gun in his hand in an attempt to make his death look like a suicide – but a suicide it was not. Gilbert’s son, 30-year-old Thomas Gilbert Jr., was charged with homicide and criminal possession of a weapon. The younger Gilbert allegedly killed his father after he cut his weekly allowance by $200. Under the new allowance agreement, Gilbert would have only received $400 for spending money per month in addition to $2,400 per month for rent – and that was enough to push him over the edge. Now, if you gun down your father over a $200 allowance dispute at the age of 30, it’s probably time to reexamine your life. Luckily Gilbert Jr will have plenty of time for self-reflection while he serves out his second-degree murder sentence – unless he pleads “not guilty by reason of affluenza”. FOX News

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So… Is Al-Baghdadi Al-Bagh-dead or not?

Al-Baghdadi

Conflicting reports emerged over the weekend suggesting that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was either killed in a coalition airstrike or injured in a coalition airstrike. Well, which is it?

An Interior Ministry intelligence official confirmed that al-Baghdadi was hit Saturday during a strike on al-Qaim, a border town in the western province of Anbar but the Pentagon did not provide any information on whether al-Baghdadi was wounded. Iraq’s Defense and Interior Ministries both released statements that al-Baghdadi was wounded in the attack led by Iraqi forces, but they did not elaborate on what types of injuries he sustained.

Well, the injuries must have not been very severe because several days after reports surfaced that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi may have been killed or injured in an airstrike, the self-proclaimed leaders of ISIS released a new 17-minute audio statement.

In the recording, released via social media, the speaker says IS fighters will never stop fighting “even if only one soldier remains”.

“God has ordered us to fight,” he said. “For that reason the soldiers of the Islamic State are fighting… they will never leave fighting, even if only one soldier remains.”

Al-Baghdadi criticized President Obama’s decision to increase the number of advisers deploying to Iraq to help security forces battle the Islamic State.

“Here is Obama who has ordered the deployment of 1,500 additional soldiers under the claim that they are advisers because the Crusaders’ airstrikes and constant bombardment —day and night —upon the position of the Islamic State have not prevented its advance, nor weakened its resolve,” he said in the tape, which appears authentic and recent.

Al-Baghdadi also called for attacks against the rulers of Saudi Arabia. Baghdadi urged supporters in Saudi Arabia to take the fight to the rulers of the kingdom, which has joined the U.S.-led coalition in mounting air strikes against the Islamic State group in Syria.

So the leader of a terrorist group is commanding his followers to attack a country that is notorious for funding terrorists? Bold strategy, al-Baghdadi. Let’s see if it pays off.

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Bombs Over Baghdad… I mean Syria. And Other News…

Syria Air Strikes

The U.S. war major counter-terrorism operation against ISIS has begun in Syria.

On Monday night, the United States—along with their new buddies Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates, launched cruise missiles and precision-guided bombs at ISIS strongholds along Syria’s border with Iraq. The U.S.-led strikes hit the city of Raqqa (ISIS’s self-declared capital of Syria) as well as a number of other villages and cities. In addition to targeting ISIS, the Monday night air strikes took aim at the Khorosan Group, an Al Qaeda cell filled with well-seasoned operatives. Why not kill two birds with one missile? So far the strikes have been a success – if you measure success by dead bodies. At least 70 ISIS militants and 50 other al-Qaeda-linked fighters have been killed in the attacks. BBC News

Chad HomosexualLouisianan gays rejoice, Chadian gays recoil! A judge in Louisiana has ruled that the state’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. State Judge Edward Rubin said the ban violates the due process clause and the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment, as well as the full faith and credit clause of the constitution. In other words, it’s good news for the couple in the case, Angela Costanza and her partner Chasity Brewer, who argued that Louisiana should recognize their marriage, which took place in California. Meanwhile, over in Africa, Chad is poised to become the 37th African country to ban homosexuality. As part of a larger overhaul of the penal code, Chad is expected to pass a new law banning homosexuality with a punishment of up to 20 years in prison. The government ministers, who have already signed on to the bill, say claim the law works to “protect the family and to comply with Chadian society.” On a more positive note, the new penal code also abolishes the death penalty, so at least the newly criminalized homosexuals won’t end up on death row… small win? The Guardian

New Zealand FlagScotland may have voted against separating from the British Empire, but now New Zealand is getting anxious to cut ties with its former colonizer. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key said he would hold a referendum on getting rid of the nation’s Union Jack clad flag next year. “I’d like to get on with it, to me I’d like to do it as a 2015 issue,” Key told commercial station Radio Live. “I’m obviously a big supporter of the change, I think there are a lot of strong arguments in favour of the change.” The prime minister wants to ditch the Union Jack in favour of a silver fern against a black background. Critics say this design too closely resembles a pirate’s flag, but Key urged his fellow Kiwis to think of it as New Zealand’s version of the Canadian maple leaf. “I know it was a ferocious debate in Canada, but in the end would any Canadians look back and say they got it wrong with the maple leaf?” he asked. I don’t know… maybe this Canadian. The Guardian

Somali RansomTurns out Somali pirates are more forgiving than ISIS militants… or they’re just more into ransoms. A German-American journalist who was abducted more than two years ago has been freed. Michael Scott Moore was abducted in the Somali city of Galkayo back in January 2012 while researching a book about piracy. A Somali pirate commander told The Associated Press that the journalist had been released after a ransom was paid, but according to Abdi Yusuf, interior minister of the semi-autonomous region of Galmudug in central Somalia where the 45-year-old journalist was abducted, no ransom was paid. Ransom or no ransom (there was totally a ransom), Moore is no doubt happy to be reunited with his family and pirate-free. New York Times

Three BoobsDisappointing Total Recall fans everywhere, the Florida woman who claimed to have had a third breast surgically implanted to scare men away turned out to be a big fat phony. Armed with a handful of disturbing selfies, 21-year-old Jasmine Tridevil (not her real name, obvs) tricked thousands of news organizations into believing she found a plastic surgeon stupid enough to give her a third boob. Tridevil says the surgery cost $20,000 and that included a “nipple” implant. She also revealed: “I got it because I wanted to make myself unattractive to men. Because I don’t want to date anymore.” She sounds smart… “Most guys would think [the extra breast is] weird and gross. But I can still feel pretty because if I wore makeup and cute clothes, I can still, you know… feel pretty,” the 21-year-old (in Courtney Stodden years) continued. But, an investigation by Snopes shows that Tridevil has a history of creating Internet hoaxes and even if she had found a plastic surgeon willing to put his/her license on the line, the procedure would take months to complete and would definitely NOT look Total Recall-esque. Huffington Post

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Current Event Cat of the Day: Al Qaeda Feels Left Out

 al Qaeda Cat

With all eyes on ISIS, al Qaeda is feeling left out of the terrorism game.

In response to a U.S. assessment that the original Islamic terrorist organization is in decline, al Qaeda issued a defiant online message Sunday, dismissing the U.S. State Department’s annual terrorism report as “lies”.

In its annual terrorism report published in April, the U.S. State Department said:

“As a result of both ongoing worldwide efforts against the organization and senior leadership losses, AQ core’s leadership has been degraded, limiting its ability to conduct attacks and direct its followers.”

While the report notes that the group has expanded horizontally, with global affiliates grabbing territory and harassing Western-backed governments in Somalia, Algeria and Yemen, al Qaeda was not impressed with U.S. trying to downplay their presence.

“Whatever slip-ups or errors (regional branches)…may have committed are limited in number in the midst of mountains of good deeds and successes,” said Hossam Abdul Raouf, an Egyptian veteran of the militant group, adding that the organization was expanding across the world.

“How then can al Qaeda have shrunken greatly and lost many of its senior leaders at a time when it is expanding horizontally and opening new fronts dependent on it?” Raouf asked.

Noticeably absent from Raouf’s statement was any mention of the ultra-hardline Islamic State group, it’s archrival for the leadership of global jihad. Counter-terrorism experts say the aging al Qaeda leadership is struggling to compete with ISIS for young recruits.

ISIS, who broke away from al Qaeda in 2013 over its expansion into Syria, has everything young recruits are looking for in a terrorist organization: publicized beheadings of western journalists (and now aid workers), mass executions of innocent civilians, crucifixions, stonings, burying victims alive, ethnic cleansing – the works! Al Qaeda just can’t compete with this level of savagery.

Luckily for al Qaeda, thirty countries have pledged to help Iraq fight Islamic State (IS) militants “by all means necessary”. Even the Arab countries are pitching in! Following a conference in Paris to discuss strategy on how to combat the jihadists, several Arab nations have offered to carry out air strikes against the group in Iraq and Syria. And a few days before, ten Arab countries issued a communiqué with the U.S. endorsing efforts to “destroy” ISIS.

So don’t worry, al Qaeda. You’ll have your title as the world’s worst terrorist organization back soon enough. Unless Boko Haram has anything to do with it…

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FBI Nabs Texas Man Responsible for White Powder Hoax: “Al Qaeda back! Special thing for you…”

White Powder Hoax

The FBI has arrested a Texas man in connection with hundreds of letters filled with mysterious white powder mailed to various government offices, hotels, and daycare centers across the U.S. over the course of six years.

According to the criminal complaint, Hong Minh Truong, 66, has sent more than 500 hoax letters since December 2008.

“We believe Hong Minh Truong is responsible for the hundreds of letters sent to locations worldwide, including U.S. government offices, aerospace companies, schools, daycares, and recently, hotels in the vicinity of Super Bowl XLVIII,” said Dallas FBI special agent in charge Diego Rodriguez in a written statement.

Most of the letters contained a white powder, which in each case was later found to be non-toxic, accompanied by some threatening and bizarre messages.

One letter, sent on May 7, 2012, read:

Al Qaeda back! Special thing for you

What the hell where are you, Scooby Doo, Counter Intelligence, CIA, you

do not know how to catch the triple dealer spy in your law enforcement.

What the hell where are you, Scooby Doo, Internal Affairs, FBI, you don’t

know how to arrest the bad cop in your law enforcement.

You all flaming idiot, ignorant and arrogant, know nothing! How to protect

this country! U.S.A

We are Al Qaeda, U.B.L FBI, Al Qaeda, SS Nazi FBI, working in your

agency. We claim everything.

Al Qaeda back? Special thing for you? If you didn’t read this using a thick Asian accent, you read it wrong.

But despite the note clearly being written by a deranged Asian man and NOT an al Qaeda operative, the Mi Escuelita Preschool in Dallas was evacuated and Hazmat teams were employed to safely contain the letter and its contents.

Other white powder letters included threats to “Hijack airplane from Love Field airport…to hit NASA center or Empire Building” and “Chop, slice, dice and mash body of leeches and put them in food store, let people eat.” Huh.

“While it was determined that the mailings did not contain toxins or poisons, each incident required a field screening of the letter’s contents, which cost taxpayer dollars and diverted first responder resources,” Rodriguez said.

Truong was ordered to remain in federal custody. If convicted, Truong faces a $250,000 fine and up to five years in federal prison where he can spend his time wondering where the hell Scooby Doo is.

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Iraq: Back in the News! (Not in a Good Way)

ISIS Mosul Iraq

Eleven years, thousands of lives, and $1.7 trillion later, Iraq is… still a hot mess.

Iraq is quickly spiraling out of government control and into the hands of insurgents who are snatching up cities, robbing banks, and attacking oil refineries left, right, and center.

But who are these insurgents making a mockery of US nation-building? None other than the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), an al-Qaeda offshoot whose goal is to create a hardline Islamic state crossing over the borders of Syria and Iraq.

The group has already taken control of Iraq’s second city Mosul, and is advancing on the capital, Baghdad. Iraq’s speaker of parliament Osama Nujaifi said the insurgents controlled all key institutions in Mosul, including the airport and prisons.

“Everything is fallen. It’s a crisis,” he admitted. “Having these terrorist groups control a city in the heart of Iraq threatens not only Iraq but the entire region.”

But capturing Mosul wasn’t enough for ISIS, who joins Boko Haram on the short list of groups that even al-Qaeda condemns. Continuing their sweep through Iraq, the Islamic ISIS militants launched an attack on Iraq’s biggest oil refinery north of Baghdad. The Beiji refinery produces roughly a quarter of Iraq’s oil output – and a threat to oil is a big threat indeed. Time to call in the big guns!

Iraq has formally called on the United States to launch air strikes against the militants.

“We have a request from the Iraqi government for air power,” confirmed top US military commander Gen Martin Dempsey.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said the president would “continue to consult with his national security team in the days to come.”

While President Barack Obama is mulling over what to do about the latest crisis in Iraq, Senate leader Harry Reid has already made it clear that he does not “support in any way” getting American troops involved in the Iraqi “civil war”.

Sigh… it’s times like these when America may begin to doubt trading tyranny for absolute chaos. Where’s Saddam Hussein when you need him? Oh yeah… the execution.

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Probably Not a Good Idea to Tweet a Terrorist Threat to an Airline…

American Airlines Dutch Tweet

A 14-year-old Twitter obsessed tween is learning the hard way that threatening a major airline on social media may not be the best idea.

On Sunday morning, 14-year-old “Sarah” from the Netherlands addressed a tweet to the US-based airline implying she was an al Qaeda operative planning an attack.

AA Tweet 2

Well that sounds pretty legit…. but American Airlines wasn’t taking any chances and wrote back:

AA Tweet Response

At this point Sarah freaked out and quickly backtracked, saying she was simply a 14-year-old white girl who made the whole thing up.

Tweets More

“I’m just a fangirl pls I don’t have evil thoughts and plus I’m a white girl,” she tweeted.

Well, if she’s a white girl she can’t possibly be a terrorist! Case closed. But just to play it safe, Sarah let everyone know that she blocked the FBI from her Twitter account. That should do the trick!

Meanwhile, over at the FBI headquarters….

FBI Agent 1: “Did you complete surveillance on that airline bomb threat?”

FBI Agent 2: “I tried sir, but she blocked us on Twitter! There’s nothing we can do.”

FBI Agent 1: “Damn. We’ll have to add her on Facebook now…”

I guess the Facebook strategy worked because on Monday the Dutch teen was arrested in Rotterdam and questioned by the police.

“We’re not in a state that we can communicate any state of charges at this point,” a Dutch police spokesperson said. “We just thought it was necessary to bring this out mostly because of the fact that it caused a great deal of interest on the Internet.”

But in the end it was all worth it because Sarah achieved what other 14-year-old girls only dream of: thousands of Twitter followers!

“Omg I got over 10k rts for that tweet omg” Sarah tweeted.

“Over 20k followers yay”

Yay! Her criminal record (and underwear) may be permanently stained, but she’ll always have her Twitter followers – until it Twitter suspends her account… which they already did.

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9/11 Is A Sound Bite That Resonates With The NSA… And Other News

9/11 defense NSA

If there’s one thing Americans can thank the terrorists who crashed into the Twin Towers for, it’s the use of the word 9/11.

9/11 is the best defense ever! Why did you invade Iraq? 9/11. Why did you pass the Patriot Act? 9/11. Why are you torturing those prisoners? 9/11. Why is defense spending 250% of our GDP? 9/11. Why did Dick Cheney shoot an old man in the face? 9/11. And now it’s being used as a defense for NSA surveillance. According to a memo obtained by Al Jazeera America, the NSA instructed its officials to shout “9/11!!!” whenever they had to justify their love of spying. Under the subheading “Sound Bites That Resonate,” the memo suggests using the following phrase to justify their eavesdropping: “I much prefer to be here today explaining these programs, than explaining another 9/11 event that we were not able to prevent.” Pretty good – but they can probably simplify it a bit by saying “9/11.” Al Jazeera

Square CrashThe Tiananmen Square car crash has been ruled a “premeditated, violent, terrorist attack”. Five people were arrested following an investigation into Tuesday’s attack in which an SUV drove into a crowd near the entrance of the Forbidden City. The car burst into flames and five people were killed – but three were suicide terrorists so that’s okay. The driver of the car, an ethnic Uighur named Usman Hasan, was accompanied by his wife and mother-in-law. Wait a minute… this doesn’t sound like a terrorist attack… this sounds like a convenient way to get rid of your mother-in-law. But police believe the attack was carefully planned and they found knives, iron rods, gasoline and a flag imprinted with religious slogans inside the burnt SUV. Ok, now it sounds more like a terrorist attack. CBC News

Evil ClownThis post brought to you by your worst nightmare: a child-abusing clown. A Milwaukee man, dressed as a clown, drunkenly held a child over a railroad overpass. After returning home from a Halloween party at 1a.m., Antonio Brown, asked his girlfriend’s two children, aged 13 and 8, to go on a walk with him. Lesson #1: never accept an invite from a drunken clown. Then Brown the Clown forced them to drink and dragged them into the woods. When they tried to escape, Brown picked up the older child and hung him by his feet over the railroad overpass while yelling, “If you do that again, I’m going to drop you.” Lesson #2: never try to escape from a drunken clown. Luckily a passerby saw the children crying, called the cops, and Brown was arrested and charged with two counts of physical abuse of a child and two counts of second-degree recklessly endangering safety. Gawker

WIneThis can’t be good… According to a report from Morgan Stanley Research, the world faces a global wine shortage. Consumer demand is already exceeding supply by 300 million cases a year. There are 1 million wine producers globally, making 2.8 billion cases each year – but that’s not enough. We need more wine! And who’s to blame for the global wine shortage? The Chinese! Wine is becoming increasingly more popular in China as their economy continues to grow. So next time you’re out binge drinking and you can’t seem to find enough wine, punch an Asian. And a European too, because apparently Europe’s wine production dropped 10% in 2012. CNN

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