In the second episode of the series Under the Influence, Noisey examine the late-70s ska revival in the UK, a movement built upon the fusion of punk rock and traditional ska. Led by the Specials, we look at how the cultural climate of the time period in the UK inspired the founding of 2 Tone Records and how that led to the ska movement in the 80s and 90s.
31 Oct 2015
A publisher of a slain online critic of religious militancy was hacked to death on Saturday in the Bangladesh capital, police said, hours after similar attacks on two secular writers and another publisher in the majority-Muslim country. Faysal Arefin published books by Avijit Roy, a U.S. citizen of Bangladeshi origin who was killed by Islamists militants in the same way in February.
Militants have targeted secularist writers in Bangladesh in recent years, as the government has cracked down on Islamist groups seeking to turn the South Asian nation of 160 million people into a sharia-based state. The country has also been rocked by attacks in which two foreigners were shot dead and a Shi'ite shrine in Dhaka was bombed. In the earlier attacks on Saturday, two secular writers and another publisher of Roy were stabbed and shot in Dhaka.
30 Oct 2015
Armed and masked police raided a Moscow library specialising in Ukrainian literature before dawn on Thursday (October 29), confiscating books they said contained “anti-Russian propaganda”.
The library’s manager, a 58 year old woman, has been accused of “inciting ethnic hatred” and risks up to five years in prison. “I don’t understand who this is targeting” said Tatiana Muntyan, one of the library’s employees. “The librarians here are Russian citizens and the readers are Russian citizens. Perhaps, because of our name, some people get the impression that this is some kind of stronghold of Russophobia within Russia, or that Ukrainian nationalists created an organization here. That’s just completely wrong.”
29 Oct 2015
The announcement was greeted on Thursday with a standing ovation at the European parliament in Strasbourg, France, but will be seen by Saudi Arabia as another diplomatic slight at a time when its domestic and international policies are coming under growing criticism. Martin Schulz, the European parliament president, said: “I urge the king of Saudi Arabia to free him [Badawi], so he can accept the prize.”
Named after the Soviet scientist and dissident Andrei Sakharov, the award was created in 1988 to honour people and organisations defending human rights and fundamental freedoms. Badawi was one of three nominees this year, along with the Venezuelan opposition movement Mesa de la Unidad Democrática and the assassinated Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov.
Tens of thousands of impoverished North Koreans have been sent abroad to work as “state-sponsored slaves” whose wages are confiscated and used to buy luxury goods for the regime, human rights activists have claimed.
The practice, used since the 1980s to help fill the hermit kingdom’s coffers, has reportedly accelerated under Kim Jong-un, who took power following the death of Kim Jong-il, his father, in 2011. Until 2012 there were thought to be up to 65,000 North Korean workers around the globe, often in terrible conditions. That number has since risen to around 100,000, activists told The New York Times.
Ahn Myeong-chul, the head of NK Watch, a Seoul-based rights group, told the newspaper Pyongyang was “exploiting their labour and salaries to fatten the private coffers of Kim Jong-un. We suspect that Kim is using some of the money to buy luxury goods for his elite followers and finance the recent building boom in Pyongyang that he has launched to show off his leadership.”
A year ago The Rubin Report already reported:
28 Oct 2015
Turkish riot police stormed the headquarters of critical media outlets in İstanbul shortly after dawn on Wednesday, with journalists from the paper making fruitless efforts to prevent them from entering into the building.
"Dear viewers, do not be surprised if you see police in our studio in the upcoming minutes," an anchor from Bugün TV, which is one of the seized media outlets, said as he narrated the drama unfolding outside the media company. Hundreds of people, most of them journalists from media outlets affiliated with Koza İpek Holding, thronged outside the headquarters of the company to protest the seizure of the media companies by the Turkish government.
Mahmut Tanal, a lawmaker from the Republican People's Party (CHP), tried to negotiate with police chiefs, but the riot police proceeded to enter the building, where four media outlets are operating. Police routinely used pepper spray and frequent brawls erupted as they occupied the building.
A reporter from the newspaper tweeted his bloody hands to show how he was injured while resisting police who tried to occupy his office.
27 Oct 2015
Your little one can now go to his friend's house, and take over their bedroom, and all of their toys and claim that God has given him/her the right to take it. If the friend refuses, your little IDF soldier can respond with force, and if they fight back, claim anti-semitism, the right to defend their new room full of God given toys and level the whole family and neighborhood block!
26 Oct 2015
There is “strong evidence” of genocide in Myanmar against its Rohingya minority That’s according to a report by Yale University Law School, obtained exclusively by Al Jazeera’s Investigative Unit. It blames the government for the crime against around one million Muslim Rohingya who live in the west of the country.
Chewbacca may have pretended to be a prisoner on occasion but this arrest appeared quite real. A man dressed as the famous Wookie, chauffeuring a mayoral candidate running as Darth Vader, was arrested in Ukraine after refusing to show documentation to police. The Sith Lord's ambitions for power have taken a much more local focus, as he is currently standing to become mayor of Odessa.
Upon arrival at the polling station 'Chewie' was unable to bypass police, who were reportedly enacting the law that prohibits candidates' canvassing on the day of voting. It took four officers to bring the Wookie to justice, forcing him onto the bonnet of a police van.
The Daily Dot reported that the pair are part of the country's Internet Party, whose mayoral candidate is legally named Darth Vader. Chewbacca was then transferred to court, where RT reported he was fined a sum equivalent to around £5 that he was unable to pay, claiming "his funds are in an intergalactic bank that has no branches on this planet."
Bonus: Chewbacca by Supernova
Aerial footage shows the scale of migration at the Slovenian-Croatian border, where hundreds of refugees are seen crossing farmland on foot on Sunday.
24 Oct 2015
According to the United Nation’s International Labour Organisation, domestic workers are some of the most likely to face abuse and exploitation in their place of work. A number of cases in the past few weeks have made international headlines: an Indian domestic worker who had her arm chopped off, allegedly by her employer when she asked for her wages; a Saudi diplomat who reportedly tortured and raped his Nepalese domestic workers; another Saudi man videoed apparently molesting his foreign maid as she worked in the family kitchen. But these are just the stories we hear about; there are many more cases, documented by human rights groups, in which women have been gang-raped, burned with oil, starved, mutilated with acid or literally worked to death.
In the Gulf, the International Trade Union Confederation says that 2.4 million domestic workers are facing conditions of slavery. Yet moving abroad to find work as a domestic worker is a calculated risk that millions of women such as Marilyn take every year. For a largely invisible workforce, domestic workers wield serious economic clout. Collectively, they account for 4% of total global employment and nearly 8% of total female employment. There are 1.5 million domestic workers in Saudi Arabia alone, and recruitment agencies fly in 40,000 women a month to keep up with demand. Muslim women from the Philippines are considered the highest calibre of workers in many richer households.
22 Oct 2015
The Aceh War, also known as the Dutch War or the Infidel War (1873-1914), was an armed military conflict between the Sultanate of Aceh and the Netherlands which was triggered by discussions between representatives of Aceh and the U.S. in Singapore during early 1873. The war was part of a series of conflicts in the late 19th century that consolidated Dutch rule over modern-day Indonesia, concurrent with the 1906 and the 1908 interventions in Bali.
Sun Jun, who believes his fair complexion may indicate his ancestors were Roman soldiers who settled in the Hexi Corridor in Gansu province, China more than 2000 years ago.
The area’s link with Rome was first suggested by a professor of Chinese history at Oxford in the 1950s. Homer Dubs pulled together stories from the official histories, which said that Liqian was founded by soldiers captured in a war between the Chinese and the Huns in 36BC, and the legend of the missing army of Marcus Crassus, a Roman general.
In 53BC Crassus was defeated disastrously and beheaded by the Parthians, a tribe occupying what is now Iran, putting an end to Rome’s eastward expansion. But stories persisted that 145 Romans were taken captive and wandered the region for years. Prof Dubs theorised that they made their way as a mercenary troop eastwards, which was how a troop “with a fish-scale formation” came to be captured by the Chinese 17 years later.
He said the “fish-scale formation” was a reference to the Roman “tortoise”, a phalanx protected by shields on all sides and from above. Gu Jianming, who lives near Liqian, said it had come as a surprise to be told he might be descended from a European imperial army. But then the birth of his daughter was also a surprise. Gu Meina, now six, was born with a shock of blonde hair. “We shaved it off a month after she was born but it just grew back the same colour,” he said. “At school they call her ‘yellow hair’. Before we were told about the Romans, we had no idea about this. We are poor and have no family temple, so we don’t know about our ancestors.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been accused of "trivialising the Holocaust" by saying Hitler only wanted to deport Jews. Netanyahu claimed the Nazi leader, who presided over the systemic killing of six million Jews, was only talked into carrying out the genocide by a Palestinian nationalist who said Jews would emigrate to the Middle East unless they were killed.
The chief executive of the world's only Jewish state told The 37th Zionist Congress: "Hitler didn’t want to exterminate the Jews at the time, he wanted to expel the Jews. And Haj Amin al-Husseini went to Hitler and said, 'If you expel them, they'll all come here.' "So what should I do with them?" he asked. He said, 'Burn them.'" Opposition leader Isaac Herzog demanded Netanyahu retract the comments, saying: "This is a dangerous distortion of history that trivialises the Holocaust."
21 Oct 2015
Investigative journalist Will Potter is the only reporter who has been inside a Communications Management Unit, or CMU, within a US prison. These units were opened secretly, and radically alter how prisoners are treated — even preventing them from hugging their children. Potter, a TED Fellow, shows us who is imprisoned here, and how the government is trying to keep them hidden. "The message was clear," he says. "Don’t talk about this place." Find sources for this talk at willpotter.com/cmu
Haftom Zarhum, a 29-year-old Eritrean migrant, died in a Beersheba hospital on Sunday night after he, mistaken for an accomplice of a suspected attacker that killed an Israeli soldier, was shot by a security guard and kicked by bystanders. A video published online following the incident purported to show the Eritrean being kicked by several people as he lay bleeding on the ground.
Israeli police have not yet made any arrests two days after the incident. The private security guard who shot the unarmed Eritrean was questioned by the police and later released, Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld said. “We have arrested no one at this point, but we are still looking for people for questioning over this incident," Rosenfeld told Al Jazeera.
Footage released online from the bus station clearly showed faces of some of those who participated in the lynching, which Al Jazeera’s reporter in Israel Elias Karram said, included two Israeli officers. Moreover, an Israeli man, in an appearance on Israeli Channel Two on Monday evening, said that he had been one of those who kicked Zarhum. It remains unclear if Israeli authorities questioned the Israeli man or took any action against him. Footage from the station showed at least one Israeli soldier kicking Zarhum in the head as he lay bleeding on the floor of the terminal. Another man lifted a bench and dropped it on Zarhum's head as another tried to protect him by placing a bar stool over his body.
17 Oct 2015
Meet the new head of the United Nations panel on Human Rights: the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Abby Martin takes us inside the brutal reality of this police-state monarchy, and tells the untold people's history of resistance to it. With a major, catastrophic war in Yemen and looming high-profile executions of activists, The Empire Files exposes true nature of the U.S.-Saudi love affair.
The Bajau tribe are nomadic sea gypsies. They can be found in South East Asia, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines, with numbers around 100,000. Traditionally, the Bajau, even today, live mostly on the sea. Back in the 1960's all Bajau lived on houseboats, cooking and washing their clothes, etc until the pirates came.......
16 Oct 2015
Material from Banksy's Dismaland theme park has been used to create shelters for migrants in the Calais refugee camp. Makeshift huts have started to spring up in 'Dismalaid' using timber from Banksy's 'bemusement park' which closed last month. The shelters are being built inside 'The Jungle' where 6,000 refugees displaced from countries including Syria, Libya and Eritrea are camped.
The Intercept has obtained a cache of secret documents detailing the inner workings of the U.S. military’s assassination program in Afghanistan, Yemen, and Somalia. The documents, provided by a whistleblower, offer an unprecedented glimpse into Obama’s drone wars.
In the "Drone Papers," The Intercept reveals drone strikes have resulted from unreliable intelligence, stemming in large part from electronic communications data, or "signals intelligence," that officials acknowledge is insufficient. The documents also undermine government claims that the drone strikes have been precise.
14 Oct 2015
13 Oct 2015
The unethical greed of pharmaceutical companies has recently taken center stage in public discourse following the decision of vulture capitalist Martin Shkreli’s decision to jack up the price of a vital AIDS drug by 5,000% (which he has still failed to rescind), but the problem extends much further than the widely reviled “pharma bro.” Democratic presidential candidate and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has spearheaded congressional investigations into the matter, targeting Valeant Pharmaceuticals for their shameless use of similar price hikes.
J. Michael Pearson, CEO of Valeant, readily admits that his company is in it solely for profits, even though they deal in life-saving medications. “[If] products are sort of mispriced and there’s an opportunity, we will act appropriately in terms of doing what I assume our shareholders would like us to do” said Pearson in an interview with CNBC. “My primary responsibility is to Valeant shareholders. We can do anything we want to do. We will continue to make acquisitions, we will continue to move forward.”
Since Pearson took over stewardship of the company, “Valeant has acquired more than 100 drugs and seen their stock price rise more than 1,000 percent with Pearson at the helm…Already this year, they have increased the price of 56 of the drugs in its portfolio an average of 66 percent, highlighted by their recent acquisition, Zegerid, which they promptly raised 550 percent.” reports US UNCUT.
12 Oct 2015
Fitz & The Tantrums
10 Oct 2015
Unit 217, frequently called Duvdevan (Hebrew: דובדבן; lit. cherry) is an elite special operations force within the Israel Defense Forces, directly subordinate to the West Bank Division. Duvdevan are particularly noted for conducting undercover operations against militants in urban areas. During these operations, Duvdevan soldiers typically wear Arab civilian clothes as a disguise.
After telling the whole world the planet would be destroyed in an apocalyptic blaze on October 7, the Christian group behind the warning have admitted they got it a little wrong. Chris McCann, leader and founder of the eBible fellowship, was so convinced about the end of the world that he decided to create a five-part podcast series about it. But as the clock ticked past midnight in the UK, and other nations all across the planet, we could breath a collective sigh of relief that the doomsayers were wrong.
Mr McCann, while probably quite pleased we wasn’t engulfed by a gigantic Doomsday fireball, also realised he might have a little explaining to do on October 8. After weighing up his available options, he decided to go with a tweet linking to his blog post: "A response to being incorrect with the prediction that, in all likelihood, the world would end on October 7." "For some time now E Bible Fellowship have been looking towards October 7 as the likely end of the world," explained the pessimist, who is based in Philadelphia.
"We believed there was a strong likelihood that God would complete His judgment and bring about the world’s destruction on that day. "Since it is now October 8 it is now obvious that we were incorrect regarding the world’s ending on the 7th." He insists the fellowship "consistently stressed throughout the entire time period that the world ending on that date was a strong likelihood".
9 Oct 2015
Washington’s failure to share data with Russian intelligence about terrorist positions in Syria makes one question the goals that Americans have in their anti-ISIS campaign in Syria and Iraq, a senior Russian diplomat has said. The refusal to share intelligence on terrorists “just confirms once more what we knew from the very start, that the US goals in Syria have little to do with creating the conditions for a political process and national reconciliation,” Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said Thursday. “I would risk saying that by doing this the US and the countries that joined the US-led coalition are putting themselves in a politically dubious position. The question is: which side are you fighting for in this war?”
Earlier, the Russian military said they would welcome American intelligence on the forces of terrorist group Islamic State (formerly ISIS/ISIL) to help with Russia’s bombing operation in Syria. But the US State Department said it would not be possible because Russia and the US do not share the same goals in Syria.
8 Oct 2015
The British Prime Minister suggests that he will try and personally intervene with Saudi Arabian authorities in the case of Ali Mohammed al-Nimr, who has been sentenced to death, as he is tackled over the British response to human rights abuses.
7 Oct 2015
In the backwaters of Eastern Europe, authorities working with the FBI have interrupted four attempts in the past five years by gangs with suspected Russian connections that sought to sell radioactive material to Middle Eastern extremists, The Associated Press has learned. The latest known case came in February this year, when a smuggler offered a huge cache of deadly cesium — enough to contaminate several city blocks — and specifically sought a buyer from the Islamic State group.
Criminal organizations, some with ties to the Russian KGB's successor agency, are driving a thriving black market in nuclear materials in the tiny and impoverished country of Moldova, investigators say. The successful busts, however, were undercut by striking shortcomings: Kingpins got away, and those arrested evaded long prison sentences, sometimes quickly returning to nuclear smuggling, AP found.
Moldovan police and judicial authorities shared investigative case files with AP in an effort to spotlight how dangerous the nuclear black market has become. They say the breakdown in cooperation between Russia and the West means that it has become much harder to know whether smugglers are finding ways to move parts of Russia's vast store of radioactive materials — an unknown quantity of which has leached into the black market. "We can expect more of these cases," said Constantin Malic, a Moldovan police officer who investigated all four cases. "As long as the smugglers think they can make big money without getting caught, they will keep doing it."
5 Oct 2015
Profiling Hassidic punk rockers, Yiddish street performers, African-American Jewish activists and more, Punk Jews explores an emerging movement of provocateurs and committed Jews who are asking, each in his or her own way, what it means to be Jewish in the 21st century.
3 Oct 2015
The British Earth and Aerial Mysteries Society (BEAMS) has released a bizarre 109-page report, following a "special investigation" into the former MoD Defence Evaluation and Research Agency site now run by specialist defence, security and aerospace developer Qinetiq. BEAMS claims Farnborough has had high UFO sighting and alien abduction activity for years and thinks this might be connected to the alleged secret base.
The group is convinced there is as much underground as above and what goes on there involves aliens, UFOs, intergalactic defence and futuristic flight development. Their bizarre theory is based upon cryptic alien symbols they have "discovered" within the site, alleged intelligence service whistleblower testimonies, and the responses from psychic researchers, the report claims. The BEAMS website says it was set up in 1991 as as a non profit-making studies group into the paranormal.