(RNS) — Commissioners traveled to a dozen countries to assess religious freedom conditions, prioritizing religious prisoners of conscience, blasphemy laws and the connections between women’s equality and freedom of belief.
While mainstream media outlets obsess over the birth of yet another “Royal Baby,” the news that the United States has supported one of its closest allies in the bombing of a wedding that killed at least 20 people—including the bride—has received significantly less coverage.
The bombing took place at a wedding near Yemen’s capital city of Sana’a, and a report from the Associated Press claimed that the majority of people who were killed were “women and children who were gathered in one of the tents set up for the wedding party in the district of Bani Qayis.”
The bride was killed and the groom was one of more than 50 people who was wounded. Ali Nasser al-Azib, deputy head of the hospital, told the AP that at least 30 children were among the injured—several are suffering from shrapnel wounds and severed limbs, and are in critical condition.
Fox News host Shannon Bream spoke to fellow Christians working in media about the importance of living a daily testimony of faith. Bream spoke during the Baptist Communicators Association workshop on April 20 in Washington, D.C.
— Read on www.bpnews.net/50770
At 4am on April 14, the United States, France and the United Kingdom executed a strike on Syria. The Syrian Free Press reported:
— Read on www.lewrockwell.com/2018/04/no_author/lies-and-deception-in-the-failed-us-strike-on-syria/
1) How morality, not just economics, factors in to Amazon’s search for HQ2
Washington Post (Jonathan O’Connell) –
The unspoken factor in Amazon’s search for a new home: Jeff Bezos’s support for gay rights
2) Massachusetts schools adopt new curriculum aimed at normalizing LGBTQ lifestyle
Boston Herald (Kathleen McKiernan) –
State comes out with new LGBTQ curriculum
3) What worldview will be taught as ‘teachable moments’ arise in public schools?
Chicago Tribune (Amanda Marrazzo) –
Supporters rally for gay teacher amid discrimination claim after he told 1st-graders about same-sex marriage
4) Schools become the new battleground for the sexual revolution as the number of transgender teachers increases
NPR (Anya Kamenetz) –
More Than Half Of Transgender Teachers Surveyed Tell NPR They Are Harassed At Work
5) Regular church attendance remains one of the best indicators of how one will vote, view question of same-sex marriage
BoingBoing (Rob Beschizza) –
The last Americans holding out against same-sex marriage
Rev. Austin Miles
Rev. Mark H. Creech
Matt C. Abbott
It’s time for the California legislature to come to its senses and remember the Bill of Rights.
— Read on www.nationalreview.com/corner/california-bill-threatens-christian-books-and-booksellers/
The alleged chemical attack in the Syrian city of Douma was staged by local militants, who tried to frame it as a Syrian Army strike, a German TV correspondent, who travelled to Damascus, has said publicly, citing local witnesses.
“People told us in a very convincing manner that this whole story was staged,” Uli Gack, a reporter with the German ZDF public broadcaster, said (referring to the alleged Douma chemical attack) while he spoke live on ZDF Heute (‘Today’) show on Satuday.
Gack had travelled to Syria and visited one of the refugee camps near Damascus, where “some 20,000 people from Eastern Ghouta and particularly from Douma” were living.
The scene of the attack, which allegedly took place on April 7, was in fact the “command post” of a local Islamist group, the reporter said, citing the witnesses he was able to speak to at the refugee camp.
He went on to say that, according to the locals, the militants brought canisters containing chlorine to the area and “actually waited for the Syrian Air Force to bomb the place, which was of particular interest for them.”
As the Syrian forces eventually struck the place, which was apparently a high-priority military target, the chlorine canisters exploded. The locals also told Gack that it is not the first such provocation in Douma that was staged by the militants.
According to other witness accounts, the militants deliberately exposed people to chemical agents during what they called “training exercises” then filmed it and later presented as an “evidence” of the alleged chemical attack in Douma.
The reporter then said he could not verify the people’s statements and cannot say if they are all true but called them quite “convincing”and added that they deserve attention.
Earlier, the Russian military said that they had found a laboratory operated by militants in central Douma, which was capable of producing chemical weapons.
In particular they found a cylinder filled with chlorine, which looks similar to the one that was shown in one of the videos of the alleged chemical attack in Douma and presented as a “chemical bomb dropped from a helicopter.”
The purported chemical incident in Douma allegedly took place on April 7. A week later, Washington and its allies launched a massive retaliatory missile strike against Syria, without even waiting for the Organization for the Prohibition of the Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to start its investigation of the incident.
Russia denounced those US-led strikes, calling them “hooliganism” in international relations and “an aggression against a sovereign state.”
In the meantime, western media embarked on a massive campaign of accusing Moscow and Damascus of “blocking” the OPCW investigators from accessing the scene of the alleged attack. Gack, however, also seemingly dismissed this narrative, saying that the delay in the OPCW team’s work may indeed have been caused by security issues.
The German reporter also pointed out that some hidden extremist cells might be still operating and carrying out attacks in the recently liberated areas, even “weeks” after they had been retaken from militants.
Gack’s report was immediately labeled as “propaganda” by some of his fellow journalists in Germany. A reporter with the German Bild daily, Bjoern Stritzel, who in particular is said to have been working undercover and actively communicating with Islamic State (IS, former ISIS) terrorists, lashed out at Gack, calling his report an “unbelievable pro-Assad propaganda on German Television.”
Last week, the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said that there are still militants in Douma who “terrorize citizens and, among other things, impede the normal work of representatives of the international community – the UN and the OPCW.” On Saturday, the OPCW eventually confirmed that its team visited one of the sites of the suspected chemical attack in Douma and collected samples for analysis.
Reprinted from RT News.
In the days since Waters has taken several interviews to further explain his views, the most interesting of which was with a group called the Grayzone Project, where exclusive Emails were featured, showing conversations between Waters’ team and representatives of the White Helmets.
Waters’ first encounter with the White Helmets was actually long before his April 13 concert, back in October 2016 when Saudi-British billionaire Hani Farsi invited him to a lavish fundraiser that he was holding on behalf of the White Helmet affiliated group “The Syria Campaign.”
The Syria Campaign is a subsidiary of the New York-based PR agency, Purpose, which claims to be impartial in the Syrian civil war. But as Alternet reported, they are on a mission to provoke western intervention in the region and have even openly called for a no-fly zone. The Syria Campaign works very closely with the White Helmets and likely has many of the same members.
Last year, the Syria Campaign paid actors up to $600 each to participate in a pro-White Helmet flash mob and orchestral performance at New York City’s Grand Central Station.
On Thursday, TIME magazine released its annual list of the world’s 100 most influential people, spanning across politics, entertainment, music, and sports. Predictably, the reliably liberal publication featured 14 glowing profiles of liberal activists, politicians, entertainers, and athletes, but only managed to find four conservative figures to highlight, one of which was a nasty hit piece. View article →
David French warns about legislation making its way to law in California. “Assembly Bill 2943 would make it an “unlawful business practice” to engage in ‘a transaction intended to result or that results in the sale or lease of goods or services to any consumer’ that advertise, offer to engage in, or do engage in ‘sexual orientation change efforts with an individual’.”
A California bill would criminalize conservative speech about gender. How Democrats hate social conservatives.
— Read on www.nationalreview.com/2018/04/california-progressives-launch-another-attack-on-free-speech/