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BREAKING: Tillerson and Lavrov Hold Press Conference

BREAKING: Tillerson and Lavrov Hold Press Conference

Posted: 12 Apr 2017 11:31 AM PDT

We Are Change

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with Vladimir Putin and Russian Foreign Secretary Sergei Lavrov today in Russia for a meeting that lasted more than two hours.

According to Lavrov, they have agreed to designate “special envoys” to have pragmatic conversations to improve Russian-American relations. Lavrov also stated that “we understand each other better” after the talks today. However, it seems that the USA and Russia still don’t quite see eye-to-eye on the Syrian crisis, as Russia is calling for an “unbiased and frank investigation” on the chemical attacks by the OPCW.

Tillerson continues to remark that Assad was behind the latest attacks and that Russia is an ally of Assad. However, it seems that both the USA and Russia agree that North Korea needs to be denuclearized.

Tillerson also said that Russian-American relations were at a new low point, and that “we both believe” in a unified and stable Syria.  Tillerson stated in agreement with Lavrov that the USA and Russia need to improve their channels of communication.

There were also apparently talks about how they can settle the conflicts in Libya, Yemen, Israel, and Afghanistan.

In short, we can pull from this meeting that the USA and Russia want to improve their relations, work closer to establishing a political solution to end the Syria crisis, despite their differences on the topic, and stand together against the nuclear threat from North Korea.

The post BREAKING: Tillerson and Lavrov Hold Press Conference appeared first on We Are Change.

Russian President Putin Meets With U.S. Secretary Of State Rex Tillerson After He Warned Of A Falseflag On Syria

Posted: 12 Apr 2017 11:08 AM PDT

We Are Change

Despite rumors to the contrary, Vladimir Putin is meeting with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson today in Moscow. One of the topics discussed is expected to be Syria, but as RT notes, the Russian presidential spokesman did not disclose what was discussed when talking to the press.

This comes after several news sources, mainstream, alternative and even local Russian outlets, have reported that Putin is predicting a ‘false-flag’ attack on Syria. According to the Moscow Times, Putin has said:

“We have information from different sources that similar provocations — this is the only word for it — are being prepared in different regions of Syria, including in the southern suburbs of Damascus, where they’re planning to spread some kind of substance and blame Syrian officials for using it,”

Putin says Syrian rebels plan to frame Assad for future chemical weapons attacks. So be on the lookout for that. https://t.co/3gRkdzFWdi pic.twitter.com/35GlyT9Z6U

— The Moscow Times (@MoscowTimes) April 11, 2017

RT also confirmed this quote, although translated slightly different. Apparently, Putin has suggested that the airstrikes in Syria resemble the events of 2003, when the U.S. invaded Iraq on unproven claims that Saddam Hussein housed WMDs.

Putin has reported stating his intent of conducting an investigation of the chemical attacks in Syria, wanting to furthermore address the situation in the UN saying:

“We are planning to address the corresponding UN structure in The Hague and call on the international community to thoroughly investigate all those reports and take appropriate action based on the results of such a probe.”

Several U.S. officials have stated that they are prepared to take more action against Syria. UN ambassador for the United States, Nikki Haley stated during the UNSC emergency meeting that:

“There are times when states are compelled to take their own action. The indiscriminate use of chemical weapons against innocent civilians is one of those times… The United States will no longer wait for Assad to use chemical weapons without any consequences, those days are over… The United States took a very measured step last night, we are prepared to do more, but we hope that will not be necessary”

White House press secretary Sean Spicer, confirmed in a White House press briefing that the Trump administration is considering further action in Syria if chemical weapons are used again, saying that:

“The president retains the option to act in Syria against the Assad regime whenever it is in the national interest, as was determined following that government’s use of chemical weapons against its own citizens. And as the President has repeatedly made clear, he will not be telegraphing his military responses,” Spicer said, also stating that “we hold open the possibility of future action.”

Since it appears that Putin has called out the United States for supporting a potential future false-flag in Syria, it is now time to keep our eyes open as the events unfold. In the days to come, we can only hope that the war in Syria remains in the press briefing room, and not on the battlefield.

The post Russian President Putin Meets With U.S. Secretary Of State Rex Tillerson After He Warned Of A Falseflag On Syria appeared first on We Are Change.

Seattle Mayor Accused Of Multiple Cases Of Child Abuse

Posted: 12 Apr 2017 11:05 AM PDT

We Are Change

Democratic Seattle Mayor, Ed Murray, a staunch gay rights advocate and a champion of progressive causes has been accused of sexually abusing several boys back in the 1980’s.

The 46-year-old man, who was only referred to as the initials, “D.H.” in the lawsuit, claimed that Murray, “raped and molested,” him for several years in exchange for $10 to $20 payments.

The lawsuit stated that Murray abused D.H. spanning a time period of several years, beginning in 1986 when the man was a 15-year-old high-school dropout.

The suit included specific details about the sexual encounters the two are alleged to have had, as well as descriptions by D.H. of Murray’s genitals and body.

D.H.’s lawyers admitted that he had been convicted of, “various” drug charges and prostitution in 1990 during an undercover sting operation.

D.H. is represented by attorney Lawand Anderson, of L.A. Law & Associates as well as attorneys Lincoln Beauregard and Julie Kays of Connelly Law Offices.

This wouldn’t be the first time that the Seattle mayor was accused.

The Seattle Times reported that two other men, Jeff Simpson and Lloyd Anderson, said they knew Murray when they were growing up in a Portland center for troubled children and later as teenagers. They accuse Murray of abusing them in the 1980’s when he was in his 20’s. Simpson made the claim as a teen in 1984, and talked with a social worker and detective at the time. No charges were filed.

The Times also revealed that it was aware of other allegations against Murray but chose not to report them:

“Both men raised the allegations a decade ago, with one making calls to reporters and Washington state lawmakers. They repeated the accusations in recent interviews with The Seattle Times, saying they would testify in court if needed.

Now, with the D.H. lawsuit, Murray faces a formal public accusation for the first time and details of the case bear similarities to the earlier allegations.

While The Seattle Times chose not to publish the 2008 allegations, the similarities between those claims and the new public case gave additional weight and relevance to the previous information.

Mayoral spokesman Jeff Reading’s statement acknowledged Simpson and Anderson’s accusations: “The two older accusations were promoted by extreme right-wing anti-gay activists,” in the midst of the marriage equality campaign and were thoroughly investigated and dismissed by both law enforcement authorities and the media.

All three of Murray’s accusers have substantial criminal records.

Reading’s comments aren’t exactly true and accurate there’s a big difference between, “thoroughly investigated and dismissed,” and the Times’s position that it, “chose not to publish.”

In another column, the Times stated they attempted to kill the story in 2008 claiming that, “we felt we did not have enough information to publish these very serious accusations.”

The 1980’s documentary film, “Boys For Sale,” mentions centers for troubled children or foster care homes as a prolific place that elite pedophiles would use to traffic and exploit children.

Murray’s spokesperson, Jeff Reading, denied the claims and called the suit a, “shakedown effort,” that was timed coincidentally within weeks of the deadline for Murray to file for re-election.

“Mayor Murray has never engaged in an inappropriate relationship with any minor,” Reading said in the statement. “Mayor Murray will vigorously fight these allegations in court.”

However the man claims that he decided to come forward with his lawsuit after the death of his father, “prompted moments of reflection and introspection,” the suit read.

“These moments of reflection and awareness that Mr. Murray maintains a position of authority, prompted the filing of this lawsuit in an attempt at accountability and to hopefully give courage for other potential victims to come forward and speak out,” lawyers wrote in the suit.

D.H’s lawyers also noted that the suit would be downplayed as being politically motivated.

D.H. “believes the public has a right to full information when a trusted official exploits a child,” they wrote in the complaint.

The Seattle city council declined to comment on the accusations.

“There is a judicial process that will address the serious allegations that this situation has presented and we will respect that process and the rights of all parties involved,” Bruce Harrell said in a statement. “It is in our human nature to immediately want answers, but I ask we not cast aspersions to the parties involved before we have all the facts through the legal process. I am confident that through this process, truth and justice will prevail.”

Murray issued a statement publicly calling the allegations, “not true” and has refused to resign.

“Let me be clear: These allegations dating back to more than a period of 30 years are simply not true,” he said. “I will not back down now. I will continue to be mayor of this city. I will continue to run for re-election, and I plan to lead this city as we work our way through the wind and rain storm of this weekend as well as the many challenges we face going forward.”


The post Seattle Mayor Accused Of Multiple Cases Of Child Abuse appeared first on We Are Change.

#NoWarWithSyria: Meet The Lawmakers Who Oppose War On Syria

Posted: 12 Apr 2017 08:11 AM PDT

We Are Change

While the Neoconservatives and Neoliberals alike, now both flagrantly promote war in Syria, few U.S. representatives are in opposition to the insane plan of regime change in another middle eastern country, but those that do are boldly voicing their opinions about it, making sure their cries don’t fall on deaf ears.

Former Texas congressman Ron Paul, notably the first to speak out about the convenience of the chemical weapons attack in Syria, has called the recent attack into question.

Paul claimed on a broadcast of his show “The Liberty Report” that all signs pointed toward the attack in Syria being a false flag operation.

“Before this episode of possible gas exposure and who did what, things were going along reasonably well for the conditions,” Paul stated. “Trump said let the Syrians decide who should run their country, and peace talks were making out, and Al Qaeda and ISIS were on the run.”

“It looks like, maybe, somebody didn’t like that so there had to be an episode, and the blame now is we can’t let that happen because it looks like it might benefit Assad.”

Ron Paul’s son Rand Paul, has also claimed that Trump’s strike was, “not in the national interest,” of the country and was, “an inappropriate way to start a war,” and that President Trump should have sought approval from Congress before acting. Adding the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) after 911 couldn’t be applied to Syria and had nothing to do with Syria or its leader Bashar Al-Assad.

“Involving ourselves in civil wars throughout the world is really not the job of America’s foreign policy,” Paul said. “Some will say maybe this is an exception to the rule, and I hope, frankly, that this is an exception. That he won’t believe that we can actually solve the Syria war militarily.”

Senator Richard Black has also raised his own suspicions of the attack in a “tweet storm,” stating that ISIS had tricked U.S. President Donald Trump — something that We Are Change also expressed may be the case. Black even tweeted out a video of the infamous Retired 4-star U.S. Army General Wesley Clark whistleblowing the plan to invade 7 countries within 5 years which names – Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Iran.

Although, this plan largely failed surpassing its given time frame in the greater spectrum of things the plot is still in full swing to invade Syria.

[RELATED: False Flag in Syria? Journalists Raise Alarms On Gas Attack]

[RELATED: MSM Admits ISIS Used Chemical Weapons In Syria]

Assad is about to defeat ISIS, so why would he suddenly gas women & children to infuriate America? Makes no sense. @realDonaldTrump

— Senator Dick Black (@SenRichardBlack) April 6, 2017

If we go into Syria we are entering WWIII based upon information provided by terrorists. If we topple Assad, we help ISIS. @realDonaldTrump

— Senator Dick Black (@SenRichardBlack) April 6, 2017

Saudi Arabia wants a pipeline to Turkey through Syria but Assad said no. This is the only way to get rid of Assad. https://t.co/gL00qby0L0

— Senator Dick Black (@SenRichardBlack) April 6, 2017

Black alleges that ISIS carried out the chemical weapons attack to force the U.S. to oust Assad to open a window for the Islamic State to take over the Syrian state.

Only way ISIS can defeat Pres. Assad is to draw U.S. into the war. What better way than stage an attack on women/children? @realDonaldTrump pic.twitter.com/bJa5xHvfbV

— Senator Dick Black (@SenRichardBlack) April 6, 2017

Hawaii congresswoman, Tulsi Gabbard, has expressed opposition to Trump’s strike and claims that Assad isn’t the only one who has chemical weapons. Gabbard has vehemently campaigned to stop funding the opposition of terrorist in the region even secretly meeting with Assad in January this year.

[RELATED: Rand Paul And Tulsi Gabbard Unite To Stop CIA From Arming Terrorists]

[RELATED: After Meeting with Assad, Tulsi Gabbard Calls on US to End Support for Terrorism]

“U.S. attacks on Syria won’t save children, rather will strengthen Al Qaeda’s attempts to overtake Syria, leading to more deaths and refugees,” she tweeted Friday in response to the missile attack.

US attacks on Syria won’t save children, rather will strengthen al-Qaeda’s attempts to overtake Syria, leading to more deaths and refugees.

— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) April 7, 2017

“We need to learn from Iraq and Libya — wars that were propagated as necessary to relieve human suffering, but actually increased human suffering many times over,” she said in an email to The Hill.

“I and thousands of my brothers and sisters-in-arms went to war in Iraq based on false intelligence and lies from our leaders — our president, military and political leaders. We should have been skeptical then, and we weren’t,” she said. “The cost was thousands of American lives and trillions of dollars down the drain. What to speak of millions of non-American lives.”’

“No leader — of either party, pro or against military intervention — should let our President take us down the path to another regime change war without that debate.”

Gabbard further added that Trump “acted recklessly” and “without waiting for the collection of evidence from the scene of the chemical poisoning.”

“If President Assad is indeed guilty of this horrible chemical attack on innocent civilians, I will be the first to call for his prosecution and execution by the International Criminal Court,” Gabbard said. “However, because of our attack on Syria, this investigation may now not even be possible.”

Because of her anti-war stance and skepticism, the Democratic party has disowned the war veteran and stated they would fund someone to campaign against her to take her seat.

Former Democratic National Committee Chairman Neera Tanden and Governor of Vermont Howard Dean tweeted their disgust of Gabbard.

“This is a disgrace. Gabbard should not be in Congress,” Dean tweeted in response to Tanden.

Tanden claimed that Gabbard being “skeptical” that Assad’s regime carried out the chemical attacks and her meeting with a “dictator” was reason enough to remove her.

“People of Hawaii’s 2nd district – was it not enough for you that your rep met with a murderous dictator? Will this move you?” Tanden wrote.

People of Hawaii’s 2nd district – was it not enough for you that your rep met with a murderous dictator? Will this move you?1 https://t.co/jbwGuZIJ6R

— Neera Tanden (@neeratanden) April 7, 2017

This is a disgrace. Gabbard should not be in Congress. https://t.co/yDTh43GZam

— Howard Dean (@GovHowardDean) April 9, 2017

Gabbard fired back at her critics tweeting:

“Those who’ve declared Trump a habitual liar now vilify those refusing to blindly follow him into another regime change war. Hypocrisy.”

Those who’ve declared Trump a habitual liar now vilify those refusing to blindly follow him into another regime change war. Hypocrisy.

— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) April 10, 2017

Other U.S. lawmakers who have expressed their skepticism or outrage over the attack without congressional approval include:

Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.), Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-N.J.), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas), Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), and Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.)

Have we still not learned from the disasters in Iraq and Libya? Now Syria? Every time we have attacked since 2001, terrorism has spread.

— Ro Khanna (@RoKhannaUSA) April 7, 2017

What is the strategy here? What is our end goal? Why did we have to strike today? This is not how you conduct a military strike. https://t.co/owJc9Nz8GC

— Ruben Gallego (@RubenGallego) April 7, 2017

I Implore @realDonaldTrump to bring forth a new AUMF before Congress before we are embroiled in an endless, aimless war.

— Bonnie WatsonColeman (@RepBonnie) April 7, 2017

This is an act of war. Congress needs to come back into session & hold a debate. Anything less is an abdication of our responsibility. https://t.co/GvHML3ByeI

— Rep. Barbara Lee (@RepBarbaraLee) April 7, 2017

My statement on tonight’s military strikes in Syria: pic.twitter.com/q99kWULpKg

— Joaquin Castro (@JoaquinCastrotx) April 7, 2017

#bigmistake pic.twitter.com/u3xFXrTR6m

— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) April 7, 2017

Airstrikes are an act of war. Atrocities in Syria cannot justify departure from Constitution, which vests in Congress power to commence war.

— Justin Amash (@justinamash) April 7, 2017

We will leave you to ponder with one last tweet from Senator Richard Black tweeting a thought provoking question, “who are the good guys in Syria that will lead if Assad falls from power?”

Who are the “good guys” who will take over in Syria if Assad falls? @realDonaldTrump

— Senator Dick Black (@SenRichardBlack) April 7, 2017



The post #NoWarWithSyria: Meet The Lawmakers Who Oppose War On Syria appeared first on We Are Change.

Israel Reconfirms Commitment To Treating Wounded Syrian Al-Nusra Fighters

Posted: 12 Apr 2017 08:10 AM PDT

We Are Change

Israel has reconfirmed that it will continue to treat “war-wounded” fighters from Syria. However, most of the wounded it treats are fighters with links to terror groups. This is not the first time that Israel has been caught defending terrorists in the name of humanitarian interests.

Article via MintPress News by Whitney Webb

At a cabinet meeting on Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reconfirmed Israel’s commitment to treating “war-wounded” fighters from Syria “as part of a humanitarian effort.” While Israel has claimed that it treats any fighter or civilian who makes it to the demarcation line between Israel and Syria through the contested Golan Heights area, evidence continues to demonstrate that those Israel treats are almost exclusively terrorist-linked opposition fighters – a fact which makes Israel’s claims of humanitarianism difficult to justify.

Israel’s treatment of wounded Syrian “rebels” has received minimal media attention, with a small number of reports describing the initiative as “quiet” and taking place in “secret military hospitals.” According to reports from pro-Israel outlets, wounded fighters are rescued via unmarked “Israeli army vehicles” that enter “Syria to pick up injured rebels.” The hospitals where the wounded are treated are concentrated along the Golan Heights, a part of Syria that has remained under Israeli occupation for several decades.

Since 2013, al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorist groups have dominated the “eight-square-kilometer separation zone on the Golan” where Israel has been extracting Syrian “rebels” for treatment in field hospitals. If they are not severely injured, they are then returned to Syria, where they resume fighting.

Though Israel has stated officially that these fighters are part of the U.S. coalition-supported Free Syrian Army (FSA), it has long been noted that the vast majority of the groups comprising FSA have pledged allegiance to the al-Qaeda-affiliated Al-Nusra Front and those who still fight under the FSA banner meet with Al-Nusra on a daily basis. Despite the clear links between “rebels” near the Golan Heights and known terrorist groups, Israel claims to have treated over 3,000 such fighters over the last four years.

An Israeli military medic talks to a badly wounded Syrian. (AP/Dusan Vranic)

While Israel’s several-year-long practice of treating wounded Al-Nusra fighters may seem counter-intuitive to some, Tel Aviv’s support for terrorism as a vehicle for regime change is well-documented. For instance, well before the Syrian conflict began, Israel – along with its staunchest ally, the United States – armed and funded al-Qaeda-affiliated groups in Iran for years. These groups used this support to carry out bombings and assassinations.

Israel has even been caught creating al-Qaeda terrorist groups in Gaza to justify attacks against Palestinian-held areas. In Syria, the case is no different, with top Israeli political scientists calling terrorist groups like Daesh (ISIS) a “useful tool in undermining” Israel’s rivals in Iran, Syria, and Lebanon.

Netanyahu looks at a Syrian rebel fighter being treated in an IDF field hospital. (Photo: Kobi Gideon/GPO)

In addition, it is particularly telling that Israel has chosen to re-affirm its practice of treating wounded terrorists now, as Netanyahu recently announced a plan to create “buffer zones” near Israel’s border with Syria. Netanyahu also vowed to never return the occupied Golan Heights to Syria. Furthermore, following the U.S.’ dramatic escalation of its involvement in the Syrian conflict, Israel anticipates that more wounded will be pouring across the Golan Heights in the weeks to come.

While no further attacks by the U.S. have taken place as of yet, Israel may have been given advance notice of the promise of future U.S.-led military action against Assad – especially considering that Israel was updated “in real-time” by U.S. defense officials in regards to Trump’s airstrike against a Syrian air base last Friday. Any escalation or further involvement of Israel and the U.S. in the Syrian conflict – much like their treatment of “wounded Syrians” in field hospitals – is also likely to be justified along “humanitarian” lines.

This article first appeared on MintPressNews.com and was authored by Whitney Webb.

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