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Updated: 2 hours 51 min ago

Foreign & Defence Policy Program of US presidential candidates

Thu, 28/04/2016 - 08:10

Donald Trump

Trump used a major speech on Thursday to lay out an “America first” foreign policy that would see Nato allies contribute more to their own defence. Castigating the “reckless and rudderless” policies of President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton that he said “blazed a path of destruction” in the world, Mr Trump said he would return the US to a more self-interested approach.

“America first will be the major and overriding theme of my administration,” the Republican front-runner said in Washington, emphasising the need to view every decision “through the clear lens of American interest”. Mr Trump said he would return the US to the peace through strength philosophy of the Cold War by redoubling America’s investments in its military and only taking on fights it can win, but would simultaneously reduce military support for key allies.

“We’re rebuilding other countries while weakening our own,” he said, insisting that America’s foreign policy had been “a complete and overriding disaster” over the past two decades. “I’m the only one - believe me, I know them all, - I’m the only one that knows how to fix it,” he said.

Nato allies would be forced to step-up their efforts
Mr Trump said that as president he would call a Nato summit to pressure allies who had failed to hit spending targets and move the focus of the bloc away from Russia and onto terrorism and migration. Calling both the mission and structure of Nato “out-dated”, the property mogul noted that just four of 28 countries were spending the required two per cent of GDP on defence. “Our allies are not paying their fair share,” he said. “Our allies must contribute toward the financial, political and human costs of our tremendous security burden, but many of them are simply not doing so.”

Hillary Clinton

"...When the United States was hit on 9/11, our allies treated that attack against one as an attack against all. Now, it’s our turn to stand in solidarity with France and all of our friends. We cherish the same values. We face the same adversaries. We must share the same determination. After a major terrorist attack, every society faces a choice between fear and resolve. The world’s great democracies can’t sacrifice our values or turn our backs on those in need. Therefore, we must choose resolve. And we must lead the world to meet this threat.

Now, let’s be clear about what we’re facing. Beyond Paris in recent days, we’ve seen deadly terrorist attacks in Nigeria, Lebanon, Iraq and Turkey, and a Russian civilian airline destroyed over the Sinai. At the heart of today’s new landscape of terror is ISIS. They persecute religious and ethnic minorities; kidnap and behead civilians; murder children. They systematically enslave, torture and rape women and girls.ISIS operates across three mutually reinforcing dimensions: a physical enclave in Iraq and Syria; an international terrorist network that includes affiliates across the region and beyond; and an ideological movement of radical jihadism. We have to target and defeat all three, and time is of the essence.
ISIS is demonstrating new ambition, reach and capabilities. We have to break the group’s momentum and then its back. Our goal is not to deter or contain ISIS, but to defeat and destroy ISIS.

But we have learned that we can score victories over terrorist leaders and networks, only to face metastasizing threats down the road, so we also have to play and win the long game. We should pursue a comprehensive counterterrorism strategy, one that embeds our mission against ISIS within a broader struggle against radical jihadism that is bigger than any one group, whether it’s Al Qaida or ISIS or some other network.An immediate war against an urgent enemy and a generational struggle against an ideology with deep roots will not be easily torn out. It will require sustained commitment in every pillar of American power. This is a worldwide fight, and American must lead it.

Our strategy should have three main elements. One, defeat ISIS in Syria, Iraq and across the Middle East; two, disrupt and dismantle the growing terrorist infrastructure that facilitates the flow of fighters, financing arms and propaganda around the world; three, harden our defenses and those of our allies against external and homegrown threats.
Let me start with the campaign to defeat ISIS across the region. The United States and our international coalition has been conducting this fight for more than a year. It’s time to begin a new phase and intensify and broaden our efforts to smash the would-be caliphate and deny ISIS control of territory in Iraq and Syria. That starts with a more effective coalition air campaign, with more allied planes, more strikes and a broader target set.

A key obstacle standing in the way is a shortage of good intelligence about ISIS and its operations, so we need an immediate intelligence surge in the region, including technical assets, Arabic speakers with deep expertise in the Middle East and even closer partnership with regional intelligence services. Our goal should be to achieve the kind of penetration we accomplished with Al Qaida in the past. This would help us identify and eliminate ISIS’ command and control and its economic lifelines.
A more effective coalition air campaign is necessary, but not sufficient, and we should be honest about the fact that to be successful, airstrikes will have to be combined with ground forces actually taking back more territory from ISIS. Like President Obama, I do not believe that we should again have 100,000 American troops in combat in the Middle East. That is just not the smart move to make here. If we have learned anything from 15 years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan, it’s that local people and nations have to secure their own communities. We can help them, and we should, but we cannot substitute for them. But we can and should support local and regional ground forces in carrying out this mission.
Now, the obstacles to achieving this are significant. On the Iraqi side of the border, Kurdish forces have fought bravely to defend their own lands and to re-take towns from ISIS, but the Iraqi national army has struggled, and it’s going to take more work to get it up to fighting shape. As part of that process, we may have to give our own troops advising and training the Iraqis greater freedom of movement and flexibility, including embedding in local units and helping target airstrikes.

Ultimately, however, a ground campaign in Iraq will only succeed if more Iraqi Sunnis join the fight. But that won’t happen so long as they do not feel they have a stake in their country or confidence in their own security and capacity to confront ISIS. Now, we’ve been in a similar place before in Iraq. In the first Sunni awakening in 2007, we were able to provide sufficient support and assurances to the Sunni tribes to persuade them to join us in rooting out Al Qaida. Unfortunately, under Prime Minister Maliki’s rule, those tribes were betrayed and forgotten.So the task of bringing Sunnis off the sidelines into this new fight will be considerably more difficult. But nonetheless, we need to lay the foundation for a second Sunni awakening. We need to put sustained pressure on the government in Baghdad to get its political house in order, move forward with national reconciliation, and finally stand up a national guard. Baghdad needs to accept, even embrace, arming Sunni and Kurdish forces in the war against ISIS. But if Baghdad won’t do that, the coalition should do so directly.

On the Syrian side, the big obstacle to getting more ground forces to engage ISIS, beyond the Syrian Kurds who are already deep in the fight, is that the viable Sunni opposition groups remain understandably preoccupied with fighting Assad who, let us remember, has killed many more Syrians than the terrorists have. But they are increasingly under threat from ISIS as well. So we need to move simultaneously toward a political solution to the civil war that paves the way for a new government with new leadership, and to encourage more Syrians to take on ISIS as well. To support them, we should immediately deploy the special operations force President Obama has already authorized, and be prepared to deploy more as more Syrians get into the fight. And we should retool and ramp up our efforts to support and equip viable Syrian opposition units.
Our increased support should go hand in hand with increased support from our Arab and European partners, including special forces who can contribute to the fight on the ground. We should also work with the coalition and the neighbors to impose no-fly zones that will stop Assad from slaughtering civilians and the opposition from the air. Opposition forces on the ground, with material support from the coalition, could then help create safe areas where Syrians could remain in the country, rather than fleeing toward Europe.
This combined approach would help enable the opposition to retake the remaining stretch of the Turkish border from ISIS, choking off its supply lines. It would also give us new leverage in the diplomatic process that Secretary Kerry is pursuing.

Of course, we’ve been down plenty of diplomatic dead- ends before in this conflict. But we have models for how seemingly intractable multi-sectarian civil wars do eventually end. We can learn lessons from Lebanon and Bosnia about what it will take. And Russia and Iran have to face the fact that continuing to prop up a vicious dictator will not bring stability.
Right now, I’m afraid, President Putin is actually making things somewhat worse.Now, to be clear, though, there is an important role for Russia to help in resolving the conflict in Syria. And we have indicated a willingness to work with them toward an outcome that preserves Syria as a unitary, nonsectarian state, with protections for the rights of all Syrians and to keep key state institutions intact.

There is no alternative to a political transition that allows Syrians to end Assad’s rule. Now, much of this strategy on both sides of the border hinges on the roles of our Arab and Turkish partners. And we must get them to carry their share of the burden, with military intelligence and financial contributions, as well as using their influence with fighters and tribes in Iraq and Syria. Countries like Jordan have offered more, and we should take them up on it, because ultimately our efforts will only succeed if the Arabs and Turks step up in a much bigger way. This is their fight and they need to act like it.So far, however, Turkey has been more focused on the Kurds than on countering ISIS. And to be fair, Turkey has a long and painful history with Kurdish terrorist groups. But the threat from ISIS cannot wait. As difficult as it may be, we need to get Turkey to stop bombing Kurdish fighters in Syria who are battling ISIS, and become a full partner in our coalition efforts against ISIS.

The United States should also work with our Arab partners to get them more invested in the fight against ISIS. At the moment, they’re focused in other areas because of their concerns in the region, especially the threat from Iran. That’s why the Saudis, for example, shifted attention from Syria to Yemen. So we have to work out a common approach.
In September, I laid out a comprehensive plan to counter Iranian influence across the region and its support for terrorist proxies such as Hezbollah and Hamas. We cannot view Iran and ISIS as separate challenges. Regional politics are too interwoven. Raising the confidence of our Arab partners and raising the costs to Iran for bad behavior will contribute to a more effective fight against ISIS.

And as we work out a broader regional approach, we should, of course, be closely consulting with Israel, our strongest ally in the Middle East. Israel increasingly shares with our Arab partners and has the opportunity to do more in intelligence and joint efforts as well. Now, we should have no illusions about how difficult the mission before us really is. We have to fit a lot of pieces together, bring along a lot of partners, move on multiple fronts at once. But if we press forward on both sides of the border, in the air and on the ground, as well as diplomatically, I do believe we can crush ISIS’s enclave of terror. And to support this campaign, Congress should swiftly pass an updated authorization to use military force. That will send a message to friend and foe alike that the United States is committed to this fight. The time for delay is over. We should get this done.

Now, the second element of our strategy looks beyond the immediate battlefield of Iraq and Syria, to disrupt and dismantle global terrorist infrastructure on the ground and online.
A terror pipeline that facilitates the flow of fighters, financing, arms and propaganda around the world has allowed ISIS to strike at the heart of Paris last week and an Al Qaida affiliate to do the same at Charlie Hebdo earlier this year. ISIS is working hard to extend its reach, establish affiliates and cells far from its home base, and despite the significant setbacks it has encountered, not just with ISIS and its ambitious plans, but even Al Qaida, including the death of Osama bin Laden, they are still posing great threats to so many.
Let’s take one example. We’ve had a lot of conversation about ISIS in the last week, let’s not forget Al Qaida. They still have the most sophisticated bombmakers, ambitious plotters and active affiliates in places like Yemen and North Africa, so we can’t just focus on Iraq and Syria, we need to intensify our counter — our counterterrorism efforts on a wider scope.
Most urgent is stopping the flow of foreign fighters to and from the war zones of the Middle East. Thousands — thousands of young recruits have flocked to Syria from France, Germany, Belgium, the United Kingdom and, yes, even the United States. Their western passports make it easier for them to cross borders and eventually return home radicalized and battle hardened. Stemming this tide will require much better coordination and information-sharing among countries every step of the way. We should not stop pressing until Turkey, where most foreign fighters cross into Syria, finally locks down its border.

The United States and our allies need to know and share the identities of every fighter who has traveled to Syria. We also have to be smart and target interventions that will have the greatest impact. For example, we need a greater focus on shutting down key enablers who arrange transportation, documents and more.When it comes to terrorist financing, we have to go after the nodes that facilitate illicit trade and transactions. The U.N. Security Council should update its terrorism sanctions. They have a resolution that does try to block terrorist financing and other enabling activities, but we have to place more obligations on countries to police their own banks, and the United States, which has quite a record of success in this area, can share more intelligence to help other countries. And once and for all, the Saudis, the Qataris and others need to stop their citizens from directly funding extremist organizations as well as the schools and mosques around the world that have set too many young people on a path to radicalization. When it comes to blocking terrorist recruitment, we have to identify the hotspots, the specific neighborhoods and villages, the prisons and schools where recruitment happens in clusters, like the neighborhood in Brussels where the Paris attacks were planned. Through partnerships with local law enforcement and civil society, especially with Muslim community leaders, we have to work to tip the balance away from extremism in these hotspots.

Radicalization and recruitment also is happening online. There’s no doubt we have to do a better job contesting online space, including websites and chat rooms where jihadists communicate with followers. We must deny them virtual territory just as we deny them actual territory. At the State Department, I built up a unit of communication specialists fluent in Urdu, Arabic, Somali and other languages to battle with extremists online. We need more of that, including from the private sector. Social media companies can also do their part by swiftly shutting down terrorist accounts, so they’re not used to plan, provoke or celebrate violence. Online or off-line, the bottom line is that we are in a contest of ideas against an ideology of hate, and we have to win. Let’s be clear, though, Islam is not our adversary. Muslims are peaceful and tolerant people, and have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism. The obsession in some quarters with a clash of civilization, or repeating the specific words radical Islamic terrorism isn’t just a distraction, it gives these criminals, these murderers more standing than they deserve. It actually plays into their hands by alienating partners we need by our side.

Our priority should be how to fight the enemy. In the end, it didn’t matter what kind of terrorist we call bin Laden, it mattered that we killed bin Laden. But we still can’t close our eyes to the fact that there is a distorted and dangerous stream of extremism within the Muslim world that continues to spread. Its adherents are relatively few in number, but capable of causing profound damage, most especially to their own communities throughout an arc of instability that stretches from North and West Africa to Asia.
Overlapping conflicts, collapsing state structures, widespread corruption, poverty and repression have created openings for extremists to exploit.

Before the Arab Spring, I warned that the region’s foundations would sink into the sand without immediate reforms. Well, the need has only grown more urgent. We have to join with our partners to do the patient’s steady work of empowering moderates and marginalizing extremists; supporting democratic institutions and the rule of law; creating economic growth that supports stability; working to curb corruption, helping training effective and accountable law enforcement, intelligence and counterterrorism services. As we do this, we must be building up a global counterterrorism infrastructure that is more active and adaptable than the terror networks we’re trying to defeat.When I became secretary of State, I was surprised to find that nearly a decade after 9/11, there was still no dedicated international vehicle to regularly convene key countries to deal with terrorist threats.
So, we created the Global Counterterrorism Forum, which now brings together nearly 30 countries, many from the Muslim world. It should be a clearing house for directing assistance to countries that need it, for mobilizing common action against threats.

And let’s not lose sight of the global cooperation needed to lock down loose nuclear material and chemical and biological weapons, and keep them out of the hands of terrorists.
At the end of the day, we still must be prepared to go after terrorists wherever they plot using all the tools at our disposal, that includes targeted strikes by U.S. military aircraft and drones, with proper safeguards when there are any other viable options to deal with continuing imminent threats.
All of this — stopping foreign fighters, blocking terrorist financing, doing battle in cyberspace — is vital to the war against ISIS, but it also lays the foundation for defusing and defeating the next threat and the one after that.

Now, the third element of our strategy has to be hardening our defenses at home and helping our partners do the same against both external and home-grown threats. After 9/11, the United States made a lot of progress breaking down bureaucratic barriers to allow for more and better information sharing among agencies responsible for keeping us safe.
We still have work to do on this front, but by comparison, Europe is way behind. Today, European nations don’t even always alert each other when they turn away a suspected jihadist at the border, or when a passport is stolen. It seems like after most terrorist attacks, we find out that the perpetrators were known to some security service or another, but too often the dots never get connected.

I appreciate how hard this is, especially given the sheer number of suspects and threats, but this has to change. The United States must work with Europe to dramatically and immediately improve intelligence sharing and counterterrorism coordination. European countries also should have the flexibility to enhance their border controls when circumstances warrant.And here at home, we face a number of our own challenges. The threat to airline security is evolving as terrorists develop new devices like nonmetallic bombs. So our defenses have to stay at least one step ahead. We know that intelligence gathered and shared by local law enforcement officers is absolutely critical to breaking up plots and preventing attacks. So they need all the resources and support we can give them.

Law enforcement also needs the trust of residents and communities, including in our own country Muslim Americans. Now, this should go without saying, but in the current climate, it bears repeating. Muslim Americans are working every day on the front lines of the fight against radicalization.Another challenge is how to strike the right balance of protecting privacy and security. Encryption of mobile communications presents a particularly tough problem. We should take the concerns of law enforcement and counterterrorism professionals seriously. They have warned that impenetrable encryption may prevent them from accessing terrorist communications and preventing a future attack. On the other hand, we know there are legitimate concerns about government intrusion, network security, and creating new vulnerabilities that bad actors can and would exploit. So we need Silicon Valley not to view government as its adversary. We need to challenge our best minds in the private sector to work with our best minds in the public sector to develop solutions that will both keep us safe and protect our privacy.

Now is the time to solve this problem, not after the next attack. Since Paris, no homeland security challenge is being more hotly debated than how to handle Syrian refugees seeking safety in the United States. Our highest priority, of course, must always be protecting the American people. So yes, we do need to be vigilant in screening and vetting any refugees from Syria, guided by the best judgment of our security professionals, in close coordination with our allies and partners.
And Congress need to make sure the necessary resources are provided for comprehensive background checks, drawing on the best intelligence we can get. And we should be taking a close look at the safeguards in the visa programs as well, but we cannot allow terrorists to intimidate us into abandoning our values and our humanitarian obligations. Turning away orphans, applying a religious test, discriminating against Muslims, slamming the door on every Syrian refugee, that is just not who we are. We are better than that.
And remember, many of these refugees are fleeing the same terrorists who threaten us. It would be a cruel irony indeed if ISIS can force families from their homes and then also prevent them from ever finding new ones. We should be doing more to ease this humanitarian crisis, not less. We should lead the international community in organizing a donor conference and supporting countries like Jordan who are sheltering the majority of refugees fleeing Syria.

And we can get this right. America’s open, free, tolerant society is described by some as a vulnerability in the struggle against terrorism, but I actually believe it’s one of our strengths. It reduces the appeal of radicalism and enhances the richness and resilience of our communities. This is not a time for scoring political points.
When New York was attacked on 9/11, we had a Republican president, a Republican governor and a Republican mayor, and I worked with all of them. We pulled together and put partisanship aside to rebuild our city and protect our country. This is a time for American leadership. No other country can rally the world to defeat ISIS and win the generational struggle against radical jihadism. Only the United States can mobilize common action on a global scale, and that’s exactly what we need. The entire world must be part of this fight, but we must lead it.

There’s been a lot of talk lately about coalitions. Everyone seems to want one, but there’s not nearly as much talk about what it actually takes to make a coalition work in the heat and pressure of an international crisis. I know how hard this is because we’ve done it before. To impose the toughest sanctions in history on Iran, to stop a dictator from slaughtering his people in Libya, to support a fledgling democracy in Afghanistan, we have to use every pillar of American power — military and diplomacy, development and economic and cultural influence, technology and maybe most importantly our values. That is smart power. We have to work with institutions and partners like NATO, the E.U., the Arab League and the U.N., strengthen our alliances and never get tired of old-fashioned shoe leather diplomacy, and if necessary be prepared to act decisively on our own, just as we did it to bring Osama bin Laden to justice.

CLINTON: The United States and our allies must demonstrate that free people and free markets are still the hope of humanity. This past week, as I watched the tragic scenes from France, I kept thinking back to a young man in the world met in January after the last attack in Paris. His name was Lassana, a Muslim immigrant from Mali who worked at a kosher market. He said the market had become a new home and his colleagues and customers a second family. When the terrorist arrived and the gunfire began, Lassana risked his life to protect his Jewish customers. He moved quickly, hiding as many people as he could in the cold storage room, and then slipping out to help the police. “I didn’t know or care, he said, if they were Jews or Christians or Muslims. We’re all in the same boat.” What a rebuke to the extremists’ hatred. The French government announced it would grant Lassana full citizenship. But when it mattered most, he proved he was a citizen already. That’s the power of free people. That’s what the jihadis will never understand and never defeat. And as we meet here today, let us resolve that we will go forward together, and we will do all we can to lead the world against this threat that threatens people everywhere...."
(Hillary Clinton called on Congress to authorize a new military action against ISIS in a speech at the Council on Foreign Relations Thursday, Nov. 19. 2015.)

Sources
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/04/27/five-things-we-learnt-from-do...
http://www.ontheissues.org/celeb/Hillary_Clinton_Foreign_Policy.htm
http://www.vox.com/2016/4/27/11504272/hillary-clinton-hawk

Tag: NATODonald TrumpEUHillary Clinton

Three Humvees being dropped from airplanes and crashing to the ground

Sat, 23/04/2016 - 12:40

Under an U.S. Army airborne exercise in Germany (Hohenfels) a Humvee broke free of its rigging and plummeting to the ground, followed by another — and another. The scene starts serenely as equipment is dropped by parachute April 11 from planes with the 173rd Airborne Brigade flying across blue skies until the first Humvee breaks free and crashes to the ground.
It's followed by a second and then a third Humvee crashing to the ground and increasing laughter on the video. The Army says nobody was hurt, and it's investigating what went wrong — and who shot the video.

Tag: Humvees173rd Airborne Brigade

Hungarian Border Control towards Serbia - the reality

Thu, 07/04/2016 - 12:56

Voir la version française en bas

The propagande, the "Counter Migrant Group", and the reality are noticeably different about the Hungarian patrols of 600 soldiers and 400 policemen at the border between Hungary and Serbia (175 km). At about the same number at the Croatian border. The basical units of the border security are the duos of a soldier and a police officer, deployed by 2-3 border stone.

They work 18-20 hours a day for 1-2 weeks and live in pits dug by themselves. They also tinker tents with garbage bags that they also wear against rain because their jacket can not stand the rain for an hour. They often undergo super-controls forcing their for example to extinguish the fire which serves as the only way to warm up. On paper they are eating 5000 calories but in fact they have 2 sandwich, 1 apple and 1 chocolate per day.

In addition the policemen do not see why they work, because they lack the equipment needed to see at night when they have a few meters of visibility and so they are almost incapable of intercepting migrants who cut the fence.


This is not a refugee camp, this is the EU border control in Hungary

La propagande, le "Groupe Anti-Migrants" et la réalité sont visiblement différents quant aux patrouilles des 600 soldats et 400 policiers hongrois à la frontière serbo-hongroise (180 km). A peu près le même effectif à la frontière croate. Les bases de la sécurité frontalière sont les duos composés d`un soldat et d`un policier, ils sont déployés par 2-3 pierres de frontière.

Ils travaillent 18-20 heures par jour durant 1-2 semaines et habitent dans les fosses creusées par eux-mêmes. Ils bricolent également des tentes à l`aide des sacs de poubelle qu`ils portent également contre la pluie, car leur veste ne supporte la pluie que pendant une heure. Ils subissent souvent des super-controls qui leur oblige par exemple d`éteindre le feu qui leur est le seul moyen de se réchauffer. Sur papier ils mangent 5000 calories mais en réalité ils n`ont que 2 sandwich, 1 pomme et 1 chocolat par jour.

De plus les policiers ne voient pas la raison de leur travaille car ils ne disposent pas d`équipements nécessaires pour voir pendant la nuit lorsqu`ils ont une visibilité de quelques mètres et ainsi ils sont presque incapables d`intercepter les migrants qui coupent la clôture.

Tag: Hungarymigration

Declaration by the HR on behalf of the EU concerning the political situation in the RC following the presidential election

Thu, 07/04/2016 - 00:00

Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the EU concerning the political situation in the Republic of the Congo following the presidential election
07/04/2016 14:05 Press release 170/16 Foreign affairs & international relations

On 4 April the Constitutional Court confirmed the result of the presidential election in Congo.

The fact that many opposition candidates stood for election, and the large voter turnout, testify to the democratic aspirations of the Congolese people, despite the serious flaws in electoral governance highlighted in the declaration by the European Union on 19 February. The post-electoral process has been marked by human rights violations, arrests and intimidation of the opposition and the media. This calls into question the credibility of the results.

The violent events which took place in Brazzaville on 4 April put Congo’s stability at risk. The EU calls on all stakeholders to show restraint and refrain from any act of violence or manipulation.

Democratic debate and respect for civil liberties are the best guarantee of the country’s stability and development. With a view to the forthcoming general election, the Congolese Government and all stakeholders must ensure that fundamental freedoms are respected and that a transparent electoral process, which reflects the will of the people, can actually be conducted. In this context, the EU reaffirms its willingness to continue its dialogue with Congo.

The Candidate Countries the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia* and Montenegro*, the country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, as well as the Republic of Moldova, align themselves with this Declaration.

* - The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Montenegro continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.

Source

Tag: Congo

Entry into force of the SAA between EU and Kosovo

Fri, 01/04/2016 - 00:00

The Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA) between the European Union and Kosovo enters into force today, 1 April 2016. The SAA establishes a contractual relationship which entails mutual rights and obligations and large number of sectors. It will support the implementation of the reforms and give Kosovo an opportunity to move closer to Europe.

The SAA was signed on 27 October 2015 by Ms Federica Mogherini, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission, and Mr Johannes Hahn, Member of the Commission responsible for the European Neighborhood Enlargement negotiations, for the European Union, and by MM. Isa Mustafa, Prime Minister, and Bekim Çollaku, Minister for European Integration, for Kosovo. Negotiated between October 2013 and May 2014, the SAA was signed on October 27, 2015 and formally concluded on 12 February 2016.

In order to support the necessary reforms, the EU provides pre-accession aid to the countries of the Western Balkans and Turkey amounting to some € 11.7 billion for the period 2014-2020, 645.5 million are destined for Kosovo.

Tag: SAAKosovo

Hungarian Border Control towards Serbia - the propaganda

Wed, 30/03/2016 - 16:51

The "Counter Migrant Group" in action... and the reality

Tag: Hungary

AQIM attacked EUTM HQ in Mali

Wed, 23/03/2016 - 12:30

Azali Nord Sud Hotel accomodationg the European Union Training Mission in Mali was shot Monday night by an attack, whose perpetrators were pushed back, killing one among the attackers. The hotel is located in the ACI 2000 quarter, close to the luxury Radisson Blu hotel which was hit on November 20 by a jihadist attack that killed 20 people besides the two assailants. Shooting, followed by exchanges of automatic weapons, broke out in the early evening in the exclusive area of the capital of Mali. Military EUTM and guards that provide protection building immediately returned fire. One of the attackers was shot. The attack against the Radisson was claimed by Al-Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), in coordination with the jihadist group of Algerian Mokhtar Belmokhtar, al-mourabitoun, who had sealed this occasion his support for AQIM.
EUTM, which has some 600 personnel, brings together European soldiers from 25 countries, currently under German command. It was launched in February 2013, in the wake of the military operation at the initiative of France to drive the jihadists who controlled northern Mali. It aims to rebuild a Malian army under-trained and under-equipped in providing expertise in operational readiness, logistics support, intelligence and training of combat units on the Koulikoro camp (60 km north east of Bamako).

Tag: EUTM Mali

EUNAVFOR MED / Operation Sophia - French Contribution

Mon, 29/02/2016 - 10:10

Read the Restricted report about EUNAVFOR MED (Wikileaks), Brussels, 28 January 2016
>>>
Dear Dr. Turke good morning,
according to your request I need to underlined that the number are not fixed but changeable due to the situation. We can normally count on around 160 people in the Operational Headquarters (OHQ) in Rome and around 60 personnel acting for the staff of the Force Commander on board ITS CAVOUR (the flagship).
The total of EUNAVFOR MED personnel is around 1460, depending on the assets involved.
On the occasion I invite you to follow us on our website (www.eeas.europa.eu/eunavfor-med)and the related social media.
Regards.

Antonello de Renzis Sonnino

(EUNAVFOR Med logo)
CAPTAIN Antonello de Renzis Sonnino
Spokesperson and Chief of Media Cell

Tag: EUNAVFOR MED

Polynésie française : impact envorinnemental des essais nucléaires

Tue, 23/02/2016 - 09:40

Les 181 essais nucléaires menés en Polynésie française entre 1966-1996 ont eu un « impact environnemental » et « provoqué des conséquences sanitaires », a admis le président François Hollande, lors de son déplacement à Papeete, lundi 22 février. Cette reconnaissance était une revendication ancienne des associations de défense des victimes et des élus locaux. Le chef de l’Etat a annoncé une révision du traitement des demandes d’indemnisation des victimes des tests. La loi du 5 janvier 2010, dite loi Morin, du nom de l’ancien ministre de la défense, a apporté des « avancées », mais seule « une vingtaine » de dossiers − sur un millier − ont abouti, a-t-il justifié.
Les Polynésiens considèrent que les essais sont la cause de nombreux cancers dans l’archipel. François Hollande s’est engagé à ce que l’Etat accompagne le développement du service d’oncologie au centre hospitalier de Tahiti.

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La « dette nucléaire » ou « milliard Chirac » (en francs, soit l’équivalent de 150 millions d’euros aujourd’hui), une dotation annuelle qui visait à compenser la perte d’activité économique engendrée par la cessation des tests en 1996, « sera sanctuarisée ». « Son niveau sera dès 2017 rétabli à plus de 90 millions d’euros », a aussi promis M. Hollande, répondant, là encore, à une demande pressante des élus locaux.
« Les conséquences environnementales devront également être traitées » sur les atolls qui accueillaient les installations nucléaires, a-t-il poursuivi. L’Etat achèvera notamment « le démantèlement des [infrastructures] et la dépollution de l’atoll de Hao ». Ceux de Moruroa et Fangataufa feront l’objet d’une « vigilance méticuleuse ».
Plus généralement, le chef de l’Etat a reconnu « solennellement » la contribution de la Polynésie à la force de dissuasion nucléaire du pays.

Parmi les 181 essais qui ont donné lieu à une explosion, deux en 1968 ont eu pour but de tester des bombes soixante fois plus puissantes que celle larguée sur Hiroshima le 6 août 1945 : plus de 1 000 kilotonnes, contre environ 15 kilotonnes pour la bombe américaine « Little Boy ». Jusqu’en 1974, les essais étaient « aériens », autrement dit menés à l’air libre : ainsi, quarante et un ont été effectués soit d’une barge, soit d’un ballon, ou largués des avions. Passé 1975, ils n’ont plus été que « souterrains », d’un puit creusé dans l’atoll, ou directement sous le lagon. L’armée a reconnu qu’au moins un tir, celui du 17 juillet 1974, avait produit des retombées sur l’île de Tahiti. Mais il n’est pas impossible que les quarante précédents aient fait pareil, d’autant que ce tir en particulier n’était « que » de 20 kilotonnes (pour équivalent en kilotonnes de TNT). Pourtant, à ce jour, seules dix-neuf victimes ont été indemnisées par le ministère de la défense ou le Comité d’indemnisation des victimes des essais nucléaires (Civen) sur 1 024 dossiers déposés.
La loi Morin adoptée en 2010, qui encadre les indemnisations, était très attendue en Polynésie, mais n’a pas atteint ses objectifs : « La loi ne fonctionne pas », écrivaient les sénateurs dans un rapport en 2013. Les projections sur les indemnisations réalisées faisaient « état de dizaines de milliers de demandes », et « de 2 000 à 5 000 dossiers indemnisables », selon les sénateurs. Elles sont loin d’être atteintes.

Source

Tag: François Hollandenucléaire

Darfur : the forgotten crisis

Mon, 22/02/2016 - 19:33

For several weeks, the Sudanese army led a deadly offensive to people in Darfur. And, until now, in general indifference. The Sudanese warplanes bombed continuously the mountainous plateau Jebbel Marra, causing many civilian casualties. The military strategy remain the same: once the bombs from the sky hit the villagers, the militias of the regime kill, rape, plunder and the survivors or neighboring villagers flee en masse. In a few days, according to the head of humanitarian affairs in Sudan Marta Ruedas, 34 000 people have been forcibly displaced. Several villages have been attacked, burned, destroyed.

The violence in Darfur erupted again in 2013, moving about a half million people, bombings and attacks continue without international echo. In February 2015, HRW alleged that 221 women and girls were raped by Sudanese forces during an organized attack in October 2014 against the city of Tabit, North Darfur. The activity of UNAMID staff on site (15 784 people in January 2015) is contested, the mission "spend more time to protect itself against attacks from pro-government militias, as acting with civilians. "

Nowadays the results of the EU support the AMIS mission, (one of the firts EU missions) are completly annulated. Read the CERPESC Analysis on Darfur in French (soon in English). This report has kept its relevance

See our book on the first EU missions in Africa here
Second, updated edition coming soon!

Tag: Darfur

Russian Robot Technology in Syria

Mon, 15/02/2016 - 08:50

Andromeda-D : the automatic control system
Ignatov also spoke at length about a new VDV automated C2 system called Andromeda-D, developed by the Scientific-Research Institute of Communications and Command and Control Systems (NIISSU or НИИССУ). He describes Andromeda-D as a division-to-soldier system, with stationary points for commanders down to battalion, and vehicle-mounted systems for tactical units. Andromeda-D has passed troop testing, has been deployed in the 76th DShD, and is in the GOZ to buy it for the 7th DShD, 98th VDD, and 31st DShBr, according to Ignatov. He told Krasnaya zvezda the existing Polet-K system will be integrated into the new Andromeda-D system. He also says the VDV plans to deploy GLONASS receivers in its vehicles as part of its C2 system.

In addition, following other trials and drills, including the Center-2015 command post event, the Andromeda-D ACS was evaluated by the military in the highest of terms. It was reported that the United Instrument Manufacturing Corporation /UIMC, incorporated by the Rostec Corporation/ started, in 2015, lot supplies of the Andromeda-D ACS to the Russian Airborne Troops. Russia proposes creating an integrated system for controlling the Collective Security Treaty Organization /CSTO/ member states’ rapid response forces.
The Andromeda-D ACS is a complex of automatic devices for equipping stationary and mobile troop command posts. Depending on the task, it can be mounted on a chassis of a biaxial Kamaz truck, BTR-D armored personnel carrier and BMD-2 or BMD-4 amphibious infantry fighting vehicle. Andromeda-D is developed specifically for airborne troops and is adapted to loading onto a plane, flying and landing. Andromeda-D offers a complete array of multimedia services like facsimile communications, video conferencing, data transmission and special purpose telephone communication.

Russia’s Airborne Assault Forces (AAF) will start taking delivery of new Andromeda-D automated command and control systems (CCS) next year, the Defense Ministry said on Monday. MOSCOW, December 24 (RIA Novosti) - Russia’s Airborne Assault Forces (AAF) will start taking delivery of new Andromeda-D automated command and control systems (CCS) next year, the Defense Ministry said on Monday. The first Andromeda-D systems will be deployed in four AAF divisions across Russia: in Novorossiisk, Ivanovo, Tula and Ulyanovsk, ministry spokesman Col Alexander Kucherenko said. The system, which uses digital telecommunication equipment, can be deployed at fixed-site or mobile command and control stations and is geared to AAF specifics as a highly mobile military service.

Uran-9
The Uran-9 is a tracked unmanned combat ground vehicle (UCGV) being developed and produced by Rostec for the international market. According to a release by Rosoboronexport, the system will be designed to deliver combined combat, reconnaissance and counter-terrorism units with remote reconnaissance and fire support. The armament is 2A72 mod ABM M30-M3 from Impul's 2 (Sevastopol') along Russian artillery and other producers , four ATGM like Ataka or other , also Igla or Strela SAM , FCS , cam IR sensors NV laser and other for detection .

Platform-M

Argo Mobility Platform

Argo Mobility Platform combat robot
Russian, Syrian, Iranian and Hizballah troops were taking up positions Monday, Jan. 18, for a massive offensive to retake Aleppo, Syria’s second city. The rebel militias occupying different parts of the city have repulsed all previous assaults.
A victory in Aleppo (prewar population: 1 million) is expected in Moscow, Tehran and Damascus to reverse the tide of the war and force the Syrian rebels to accept that their insurgency is at an end and their only remaining option is to join the peace process initiated by Russia on Syria’s future.
Russian military intervention since late August has lifted the Syrian army out of its hopeless state and imbued its officers with fresh vigor and the troops with high morale. Bashad Assad’s army is not the same largely defeated one of five months ago. Russian air strikes have restored its commander’s confidence in their ability to win. Cutting-edge weapons are reaching combat units with Russian military advisers on hand to teach the Syrian army how to use them, along with exposure to advanced methods of warfare that have been developed by a world-class military.
DEBKAfile’s military sources add that the operational standards of Hizballah and the pro-Iranian Shiite militias fighting alongside the Syrian army have likewise been enhanced by their exposure to Russian tactics.
Those tactics have produced a substantial drop in Hizballah, Iranian and Syrian casualties in battle, contrary to reports of high casualties claimed in the Western mainstream press,
Robots, novel replacements for boots on the ground, recently made their debut appearance in the Syrian arena, our military sources have revealed. They are cast in a star role in the offensive for the recovery of Aleppo.
Heralding a revolution in modern warfare, the Russians are fielding two kinds of robots – the Platform-M combat robot and the Argo Mobility Platform, both heavily armored and capable of functioning day or night in a variety of battlefield conditions. Platform-M gathers intelligence, uncovers fixed and moving targets and destroys them. It also provides firepower support for forces on the move and secures military installations or routes traveled by the army. Platform-M is armed with semiautomatic or automatic control firing systems.for destroying enemy targets But extra fire power can be mounted on the system as required.
The Argo is designed for rough-country operations, especially on mountainous or rocky terrain. In recent battles, Syrian rebels were startled to find themselves under sudden heavy fire from the unmanned Russian robots.
Russian General Staff Chief Valery Gerasimov recently spoke of a plan to “completely automate the battle in Syria.” He added, “Perhaps soon we will witness robotic groups independently conducting warfare.” Our military sources comment that this vision is overly futuristic. No totally robotic battlefield exists anywhere in the world today outside sci-fi cinema.

For the first time in the history of the war, Russian troops conducted an attack on solid defense area of the terrorist gunmen with military robots. In the Latakia, Syrian troops under the cover of Russian robots and task success captured the strategic peak 754.5. Not long ago, the Chief of the Russian General Gerasimov, Russia claims are chemical robots war effort in the near future, the world will be witnessing, military units are robots, independently conduct the battle-and the prospect that happened a couple of days.
In 2013, Russian airborne forces were put on the payroll systems of automation of operations, Executive “Andromeda-D” on the platform C4I2 (command, control, communications, computer, intelligence, and information), with this software, the system can directly command, combat units operating branches form a complex with the involvement of modern weapons. Use the new high-tech equipment allows the levels command, combat operating can continually run the unit, perform the operations training exercise, ready to fight and fight on the battlefield is not familiar.

Private landing force command line can not perform operation on more than 5000 km of distance C4I2 to area, relaying the information not just through photos and satellite images, which also received both the entire battlefield surveillance videos, the real time combat. C4I2 combination “Andromeda-D” can be mounted on the command Bridge and two terrain as “KamAZ”, armored vehicle BTR-D, BMD-2 and BMD-4. In addition, with the particularity of the airborne forces, “Andromeda-D” can be transported by plane, flying and parachute landing. The command system, operating this warfare was brought to perform support tasks in the Syrian army mission is particularly important. Sources from the social networking site MaxPark said: during the battle of Latakia, the Russian Defence Ministry was dispatched to Syria a C4I2 “Andromeda-D”, 6 the complex military robot “Platform-M” and four “Argo” robot assemblage. Cover the robot attack combinations 152 mm self-propelled howitzer “Akatsiya”, the new field was taken to Syria not long ago, the Akatsiya is responsible AFTER the fire cover for the robot as required.

The battle to win the high score in Latakia started by diversion of the military robots, straight into the battlefield of the terrorist gunmen. On distance 100-120 m, the robot that dropped ammunition, attracted fire from the terrorist gunmen, the fire points identified are suppressed by enemy fire immediately after 152 mm self-propelled gun’s “Akatsiya”.
Followed by the robots fighting, on a distance of 150-200 m is the Syrian infantry force, whose mission is to cover robot, wipe out enemies on the peak. Though the high mountain terrain is really complicated, but the militants of terrorism completely without a chance to fight back. All of our moves were the military unmanned aircraft control closely and any risk would all be extinguished by howitzer Akatsiya. After only 20 minutes of military robots attack, the militants have fled the chaos, leaving the armament. On the high mountains of 754.5 Latakia, Syrian soldiers counted 70 gunmen killed, Syrian troops have no losses, 4 wounded.

The first time in the history, Russian army use military robots Argo and robots Platforma-M attack the mountain Latakia in Syria

Armored robot “Platforma-M”
Research and development corporations NITI Progress Izhevsk has designed and built the complex military robots Platforma-M based on the tracked chassis. Armored robot was equipped with 4 anti-tank grenade launcher or ammo 7.62 mm machine gun, pressure heat Kalashikov. The purpose of the tactical requirements of the Platforma-M is to attack the targets fixed and mobile military. In addition, the robot can perform other tasks such as reconnaissance and patrolling the area. The robot can also perform the duties of battalion, open road through the defensive minefields. The activities of research and development of robot combination lasts many years, robot pass every test and put into application in the test unit. We are prepared for the production order line.

Terrain military robot Argo.
Terrain military robot ArgoResearch Center-engineering design technology application study control and Russian robotist has developed robotic Argo military complexes. Argo is combination remote control. ARGO has the purpose required to conduct reconnaissance activities, support the troops. The car was equipped with weapons to destroy troops, the enemy’s fighting vehicles. In addition, Argo robot made light transport duties. ARGO weighs about a ton, length 3.4 m, width 1 m, height 1.65 m on land vehicles can run up to speeds of about 20 km/h, Wade at a speed of 4.6 km. reserve operating time of 20 hours. The vehicle can install the module contemporary weapons remote control: present module is using a mounted machine gun, 7.62 mm Kalasnhikov, 7 3 anti-tank grenade RPG-26, two grenade RSG-2.

Sources :
http://www.armyrecognition.com/weapons_defence_industry_military_technol...
https://russiandefpolicy.wordpress.com/tag/andromeda-d/
http://www.todaynews24h.com/russian-military-robots-join-against-terrori...
http://sputniknews.com/military/20121224/178372572.html
http://www.debka.com/article/25170/Russian-robots-on-the-ground-for-four...

Tag: Russian ArmyAndromeda-DUran-9

Global Cybersecurity Index & Cyberwellness Profiles Report 2015

Wed, 27/01/2016 - 11:09

"​​​The Global Cybersecurity Index (GCI) measures each nation's level of commitment to the ITU's Global Cybersecurity Agenda, with the aim of highlighting potential areas for improvement and driving cybersecurity to the forefront of national plans. This report presents the 2014 results of the GCI and the Cyberwellness country profiles for Member states. It includes regional rankings, a selected set of good practices and the way forward for the next iteration."

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Tag: cyberattaquecybersecurity

About the Post-Cotonou Agreement

Tue, 22/12/2015 - 08:55

Despite the agenda, the Cotonou Agreement (signed in June 2000, entered into force in 2003; between EU and ACP countries) was not revised in 2015, but the preparation work of an Post-Cotonou Agreement will be launched.

Tag: Cotonou

Is the Hungarian Counterterrorism Centre (TEK) only a joke?

Thu, 26/11/2015 - 00:00

Hungary terror suspects are WWII enthusiast, court rules
BBC News 26/11/2015

A court in Hungary has ruled that four men detained as suspected terrorists were in fact World War Two enthusiasts.
The men were arrested after visiting the site of a wartime tank battle at the weekend, carrying old weapons they had found with a metal detector.
News of their arrest drew heightened attention in the wake of this month's Paris attacks in which 130 people died.
But the judge in Budapest said there was no evidence the four men had links to terrorism.
The judge denied a prosecutor's application for the main suspect, known only as Roland S, to be held in custody.
'Looking foolish'
The four men were detained after old weapons explosives were found in their car during spot-checks by Hungary's anti-terrorist police following the 13 November Paris attacks.
The co-ordinated attacks - which were claimed by Islamic State - targeted a series of sites in the French capital.
After the weekend arrests, Hungary's anti-terrorist police chief Janos Hajdu said machine guns, silencers, and even a bomb-making laboratory had been found at the home of one of the suspects
He also added that links to Islamist radicals could not be ruled out.
But the Budapest court said on Wednesday that "circumstances of the case point to the opposite".
The main suspect, it said, had no links with extremists and no criminal record.
It said the man "lives with his mother and stepfather and is a World War Two enthusiast".
The BBC's Nick Thorpe in Budapest says the anti-terror squad have been left looking rather foolish.
All four, however, remain under investigation for unlicensed possession of equipment capable of making explosives.

Hungary seizes live weapons from Brad Pitt World War Z film
Telegraph 3:00PM BST 11 Oct 2011

Nearly 100 live weapons to be used in Brad Pitt's "World War Z" film were confiscated by Hungarian authorities, according to reports.

The weapons included machine guns, rifles and pistols, security officials said.
The weapons arrived from London to Budapest's Ferenc Liszt Airport on Saturday and were discovered at a nearby duty free zone, Janos Hajdu, head of Hungary's Counterterrorism Centre, said. He said he could not confirm they were meant for the film.
"It's possible that all the weapons were brought in for the film, but this would not be allowed by Hungarian law," as the weapons had not been fully deactivated and could easily be used to fire live ammunition, Mr Hajdu said. "This is a very complicated case."
Mr Hajdu said the weapons had been shipped to a Hungarian company, whose representative was being questioned by investigators.
Mr Hajdu explained that in Hungary weapons were considered to be deactivated only if the process "was irreversible," while the weapons seized could still be fired even though screws had been used to fill the end of the barrels.

Xpat Opinion: Terror Police Arrest 'Luke Skywalker' In Budapest
Xpatloop.com

The fearsome ‘terror police’ or TEK of Orbanistan-Hungary on Wednesday raided the oldest technical university in Europe (BME) after an emergency call alerted them to a student roaming the premises armed with a handgun.
The student was arrested and cuffed, as the terror police extracted him from the building. It was later revealed that the student was enacting scenes from Star Wars and was holding a toy gun while being dressed in the robes of none other than Luke Skywalker.

Fidesz officials commented: TEK was just doing its job. Despite this, the affair is one in a chain of embarrasing blunders by the elite swat team.
Just recently, the unit was being laughed at after its captain Janos Hajdu (the PM’s former body guard) tried to contact fake editors of a website, requesting correction of an article. In older news, TEK had confiscated a stash of weapons (actually props) belonging to Brad Pitt, who was about to film in Budapest.

According to Hajdu, the Skywalker incident should not be laughed at, as every call has to be taken seriously. “If it had been a real gun, many would have died that day,” added the hardened veteran.
By Andras M. Badics, published on XpatLoop.com with the permission of BudapestReport.com

The New Hungarian Secret Police
Paul Krugman NYTimes Blog

Another Hungary post from my Princeton colleague Kim Lane Scheppele, after the jump.
The New Hungarian Secret Police
Kim Lane Scheppele
Tuesday 17 April 2012

Brad Pitt knows all about the TEK, Hungary’s new counter-terrorism police.
When Pitt was in Budapest last October shooting World War Z, an upcoming zombie-thriller, TEK agents seized 100 machine guns, automatic pistols and sniper rifles that had been flown to Hungary for use as props in the movie. The weapons were disabled and came with no ammunition. But the Hungarian counter-terrorism police determined that they constituted a serious threat.

The dead-pan seizure of movie props made TEK the laughing stock of the world. As David Itzkoff joked in the pages of the New York Times, “If Hungary ever finds itself the target of an undead invasion, its police force should now be well supplied to defend the nation.”
Few have taken TEK seriously. But that is a big mistake. In fact, TEK seems to be turning into Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s own secret police. In less than two years, TEK has amassed truly Orwellian powers, including virtually unlimited powers of secret surveillance and secret data collection.

The speaker of the Parliament, László Kövér, now has his own armed guard too, since the Parliament yesterday passed a law that creates a separate armed police force accountable to the Parliament. It too has extraordinary powers not normally associated with a Parliamentary guard. The creation of this “Parlia-military” gives Hungary the dubious distinction of having the only Parliament in Europe with its own armed guard that has the power to search and “act in” private homes.

About the Parlia-military, more later. First, to TEK.
TEK was created in September 2010 by a governmental decree, shortly after the Fidesz government took office. TEK exists outside the normal command structure of both the police and the security agencies. The Prime Minister directly names (and can fire) its head and only the interior minister stands between him and the direct command of the force. It is well known that the head of this force is a very close confidante of the Prime Minister.

TEK was set up as an anti-terror police unit within the interior ministry and given a budget of 10 billion forints (about $44 million) in a time of austerity. Since then, it has grown to nearly 900 employees in a country of 10.5 million people that is only as big as Indiana.

Why was TEK necessary? When it was created, the government said that it needed TEK because Hungary would hold the rotating presidency of the European Union starting in January 2011. During the six months it held this office, Hungary could be expected to host many important meetings for which top anti-terrorism security would be necessary. But even though Hungary’s stint in the EU chair is over, TEK has continued to grow.

Eyebrows were raised when János Hajdu, Orbán’s personal bodyguard, was appointed directly by the prime minister to be the first head of this new agency. Since TEK’s job also included guarding the prime minister, some believed that Orbán had set up the office to get his trusted bodyguard onto the public payroll. Patronage turns out to be the least of the worries about TEK, however.

TEK is now the sort of secret police that any authoritarian ruler would love to have. Its powers have been added slowly but surely through a series of amendments to the police laws, pushed through the Parliament at times when it was passing hundreds of new laws and when most people, myself included, did not notice. The new powers of TEK have received virtually no public discussion in Hungary. But now, its powers are huge.

What can the TEK do?

TEK can engage in secret surveillance without having to give reasons or having to get permission from anyone outside the cabinet. In an amendment to the police law passed in December 2010, TEK was made an official police agency and was given this jurisdiction to spy on anyone. TEK now has the legal power to secretly enter and search homes, engage in secret wiretapping, make audio and video recordings of people without their knowledge, secretly search mail and packages, and surreptitiously confiscate electronic data (for example, the content of computers and email). The searches never have to be disclosed to the person who is the target of the search – or to anyone else for that matter. In fact, as national security information, it may not be disclosed to anyone. There are no legal limits on how long this data can be kept.

Ordinary police in Hungary are allowed to enter homes or wiretap phones only after getting a warrant from a judge. But TEK agents don’t have to go to a judge for permission to spy on someone – they only need the approval of the justice minister to carry out such activities. As a result, requests for secret surveillance are never reviewed by an independent branch of government. The justice minister approves the requests made by a secret police unit operated by the interior minister. Since both are in the same cabinet of the same government, they are both on the same political team.

TEK’s powers were enlarged again in another set of amendments to the police law passed on 30 December 2011, the day that many other laws were passed in a huge end-of-year flurry. With those amendments, TEK now has had the legal authority to collect personal data about anyone by making requests to financial companies (like banks and brokerage firms), insurance companies, communications companies (like cell phone and internet service providers) – as well as state agencies. Data held by state agencies include not only criminal and tax records but also educational and medical records – and much more. Once asked, no private company or state agency may refuse to provide data to TEK.

Before December 2011, TEK had the power to ask for data like this, but they could only do so in conjunction with a criminal investigation and with the permission of the public prosecutor. After December 2011, their data requests no longer had to be tied to criminal investigations or be approved by the prosecutor. In fact, they have virtually no limits on what data they can collect and require no permission from anyone.

If an organization (like an internet service provider, a bank or state agency) is asked to turn over personally identifiable information, the organization may not tell anyone about the request. People whose data have been turned over to TEK are deliberately kept in the dark.

These powers are shocking, not just because of their scope, but also because most Hungarians knowledgeable about constitutional law would probably have thought they were illegal. After the changes of 1989, the new Hungarian Constitutional Court was quick to dismantle the old system in which the state could compile in one place huge amounts of personal information about individuals. In its “PIN number” decision of 1991, the Constitutional Court ruled that the state had to get rid of the single “personal identifier number” (PIN) so that personally identifiable data could no longer be linked across state agencies. The Court found that “everyone has the right to decide about the disclosure and use of his/her personal data” and that approval by the person concerned is generally required before personal data can be collected. It was the essence of totalitarianism, the Court found, for personal information about someone to be collected and amassed into a personal profile without the person’s knowledge.

With that Constitutional Court decision still on the books and not formally overruled, the Fidesz government is reproducing the very system that the Court had banned by creating a single agency that can gather all private information about individuals in one place again. What, one might ask, is left of constitutional law in Hungary?

One might also ask: Are there any limits to TEK’s power?

The law specifies that TEK operates both as a police and as a national security agency. When it is acting as a police unit, it has the jurisdiction to spy on any person or group who poses a threat of terrorism, along with anyone else associated with such persons. Hungary, like many countries after 9/11, has a broad definition of terrorism that includes, among other things, planning to commit a “crime against the public order” with the purpose of “coercing a state body . . . into action, non-action or toleration.” Crimes against the public order include a long list of violent crimes, but also the vaguer “causing public danger.” In addition, TEK also may arrest “dangerous individuals,” a term not defined in the criminal law. It is difficult from the text of the law itself to see any clear limits on TEK’s powers.

And TEK is very active. On April 7, TEK agents were called in to capture a young man in the small village of Kulcs who killed four members of his family with a machete. And then, in the early morning hours of Friday, April 13, TEK agents conducted a major drug bust in Budapest, arresting 23 people. According to news reports, fully 120 TEK agents were involved in the drug operation, raising questions about whether the drug bust was thought to be part of the anti-terrorism mission of the agency or a rather broad extension of the concept of the “dangerous individual.” Either way, the drug ring looked like garden-variety crime. If that is within TEK’s jurisdiction, it is hard to imagine what is not.

A You-Tube video of the April 13 drug bust, made available by TEK itself, shows what a middle-of-the-night raid by TEK officers looks like, complete with the use of heavy-duty tools to cut open an exterior door.

Given that this is the video that TEK wanted you to see, one can only imagine the activities of TEK that are not recorded for posterity. (It would be interesting to know, for example, why the audio cuts out at certain points in the clip, as well as what happens between the time that TEK breaks open the door and the time the various suspects are seen lying handcuffed on the floor.)

While its videos are crystal clear, TEK’s legal status is blurry, as some parts of its activities are authorized under the police law and others parts are authorized under the national security law. Different rules and standards apply to police agencies and to national security agencies. Moreover, TEK seems to have some powers that exceed those of both police and national security agencies, particularly in its ability to avoid judicial warrants. No other agency in the Hungarian government has both police and national security powers, and it is unclear precisely how the agency is accountable – for which functions, under what standards and to whom. What follows is my best guess from reading the law.

With respect to its powers authorized under the police law, it appears that TEK must act like the police and get judicial warrants to search houses, to wiretap and to capture electronic data when these activities are part of a criminal investigation. When TEK was arresting the machete-wielder and making the drug bust, it was probably acting under its police powers.

But TEK only need judicial warrants when it is engaged in criminal investigations. It doesn’t need judicial warrants when it is using its secret surveillance powers in security investigations. When it is acting as a national security agency, TEK only needs the permission of the justice minister to engage in secret and intrusive surveillance. Of course, given that the permissions and constraints are different depending on whether TEK is acting as a police agency or a national security agency, it would matter who decides whether a particular activity is conducted for police or national security purposes and what the criteria are for determining that it is one or the other. The law does not provide the answer to either question.

Suppose someone believes that she has been spied upon illegally by TEK. What can she do to object? First, if TEK is engaged in secret surveillance or data collection, it is unlikely that people will know that they are a target, given the extraordinary secrecy of the whole operation. But even if one finds out that one is being watched, the remedies are not encouraging.

A person aggrieved by TEK’s actions may complain to the interior minister, and the interior minister must answer the complaint within 30 days. But given that the interior minister is the minister who controls TEK in the first place, this is not an independent review. If the complainant does not like the answer of the interior minister, s/he may appeal to the Parliament’s national security committee, which must muster a one-third vote to hear the petition. At the moment, the 12-member national security committee consists of two-thirds governing party members and one-third members of all other parties combined. If the governing party does not want to investigate a complaint, garnering a one-third vote would mean uniting the whole opposition – or, to put it in more blunt terms, getting the Socialists to work with the neo-Nazis. That is unlikely to happen. Even if the national security committee agrees to hear a petition, however, it would take a two-thirds vote of the committee to require the interior minister to reveal the surveillance methods used against the complainant so that the committee can determine whether they were legal. There is no judicial review at any stage of this process.

TEK operates in secret with extraordinary powers and no one reliably independent of the current governing party can review what it is doing when it uses its most potentially abusive powers. This shocking accumulation of power may explain the Hungarian government’s abolition of a separate data protection ombudsman who would have the power to investigate such shocking accumulation of data. Instead, the data protection officer – a post required by European Union law – has been made a political appointee of the government itself. This is why the EU has launched an infringement action against Hungary for failing to guarantee the independence of the office. Now we can see why the EU may be onto something.

As if the powers of TEK are not enough, though, Parliament yesterday authorized another security service with the power to use police measures against citizens and residents of Hungary. The cardinal law on the Parliament itself contains a provision that gives the Parliament its own military, a Parlia-military.

The Parlia-military is an armed police unit outside the chain of command of the regular military or police structures. Its commander in chief is the speaker of the house, László Kövér, who served as minister without portfolio for the Civilian Intelligence Services during the first Orbán government from 1998-2002. The Parlia-military has the power to guard the Parliament and the speaker of the house, as might be expected. But if the Parlia-military is only supposed to guard the Parliament and the speaker, why does it need the powers that the cardinal law gives it?

The law gives the Parlia-military power “to enter and to act in private homes.” That’s literally what the law says. It is unlikely that the Parliament will want to conduct a plenary session in someone’s living room, so one must then wonder just what the Parliament will do if its armed military enters someone’s home to “act.” In addition to this power, the Parlia-military may also make public audio and video recordings of people. It can also search cars, luggage and clothing. It can use handcuffs and chemical substances (which I assume means tear gas and nothing more, but the wording make it sound like the Parlia-military may use chemical weapons!). The draft law seems to imply that the Parlia-military would have to operate under the constraints of the police law, which would mean that it would need judicial warrants to conduct these intrusive measures. But that is not completely clear. What is clear is that Hungary now suffers from a proliferation of police that are under direct political control.

Until this point, I have thought that the Fidesz government was just attempting to lock down power for itself for the foreseeable future, which was bad enough. But now, with the discovery of these new security services, it seems increasingly likely that the Hungarian government is heading toward the creation of a police state. Actually, it may already be there. But shhhh! It’s secret.

Tag: TEKHungarian Counterterrorism Centre

Romania buy 12 F-16AM/BM aircraft from Portugal

Thu, 15/10/2015 - 00:00

In October 2013, Romania bought 12 second-hand F-16AM/BM aircraft from Portugal to replace part of its fleet of Russian built MiG-21 Lancer fighter aircraft. Romania was rumored to have paid about 638 million EUR with 120 million EUR for the acquisition of the planes. The contract also included modifications and upgrades performed by Lockheed Martin; additional engines; logistics support; and the training of 9 Romanian pilots and 69 maintenance technicians.

Romania is currently working on modernizing the Fetesti 86 military base which will be host to Romania’s first F-16s. Those are scheduled to arrive in 2016. The base must meet NATO standards by then.

Tag: RomaniaF-16

26 Minutes - Armée Suisse (Humour)

Sat, 26/09/2015 - 00:00

Voir notre entrée de blog sur l`Armée suisse ici

26 minutes 09.12.2016 20h10
L'invité de la rédaction : Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
L'armée suisse étend sa présence sur les réseaux sociaux

Sources :
http://www.20min.ch/ro/news/suisse/story/Elle-combattra-les-soldats-blag...


26 minutes .11.2016 20h10
L'invité de la rédaction : Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
L`armée suisse a choisi d`équiper ses soldats de nouvelles chaussures de combat

Sources : https://www.rts.ch/info/suisse/8173446-les-bottes-de-l-armee-suisse-cous...


26 minutes 14.10.2016 20h10
L'invité de la rédaction : Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
L’armée suisse engage des petits chiens

Sources : http://www.lematin.ch/suisse/Des-minichiens-pour-l-armee/story/24411051


26 minutes 17.09.2016 20h10
L'invité de la rédaction : Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
Le lieutenant-colonel Karl-Heinz Inäbnit, suppléant du commandant de la place d’armes de Bure, revient sur les différents incidents que l’armée a connus ces dernières semaines.

Sources :
Triste certitude : le pilote du F/A-18 est décédé
Aarau: perte de plusieurs kilos d'explosifs dans une école de recrues
Thoune: lors d'un contrôle matériel, des recrues de l'armée suisse ont tiré accidentellement sur une maison
Rekruten schiessen aus Versehen auf Wohnhaus


26 minutes 19.03.2016 19h15
L'invité de la rédaction : Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
Le lieutenant-colonel Karl-Heinz Inäbnit, suppléant du commandant de la place d’armes de Bure (JU), dresse un bilan de la première semaine des écoles de recrues de printemps.

Source
Environ 6’900 recrues sont attendues à l’ER du printemps 2016
Règlement de service de l’armée suisse 510.107.0 (RS.04)


26 minutes 29.01.2016 19h15
L'invité de la rédaction : Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
26 minutes plus tôt: les véganes sont-ils les bienvenus à l’armée ?

Source
Ce jeune homme a été exclu de l’armée suisse pour cause de véganisme


26 minutes 05.12.2015, 8h40

Source
Réalisation du projet de police aérienne 24


26 minutes 28.11.2015, 20h45
L'invité de la rédaction : Pouki
Pouki, membre du DARD (Détachement d’action rapide et de dissuasion de la Police cantonale vaudoise) nous présente les activités de cette unité d'élite.

Source


26 minutes 17.10.2015, 20h45
L'invité de la rédaction : Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
Un F/A-18 de l'armée suisse s'est écrasé dans le Doubs (France). Le lieutenant-colonel Karl-Heinz Inäbnit, suppléant du commandant de la place d'armes de Bure, nous explique les circonstances et les conséquences du crash d'un avion des forces aériennes suisses.

Source
http://www.rts.ch/info/suisse/7168104-un-f-a-18-de-l-armee-suisse-s-ecra...


26 minutes, 12.09.2015, 20h10
L'invité de la rédaction : Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
Le Lt Col Karl-Heinz Inäbnit, suppléant du commandant de la place d’armes du Bure, nous explique le pourquoi de la présence de la Brigade blindée 1 au Comptoir suisse.

Source
http://www.he.admin.ch/internet/heer/fr/home/verbaende/pzbr1.parsysrelat... ;
http://www.vtg.admin.ch/internet/vtg/fr/home/dokumentation/publik_zeitrs...


26 minutes, 21.02.2015, 18h45
L'invité de la rédaction: Karl-Heinz Inäbnit
Le lieutenant-colonel Karl-Heinz Inäbnit revient sur la proposition du brigadier Denis Froidevaux d’introduire la conscription obligatoire pour les femmes.

Source :
http://www.nzz.ch/schweiz/wehrpflicht-fuer-frauen-weitet-den-personalpoo...


Emissions plus anciennes :
(120 Secondes)
http://www.120secondes.info/videoscategory/armee/
Magyar kommentár
Sources
http://www.asmz.ch/

Tag: 26 minutes

Egypt Buy "former Russian" BPC Mistral Warships

Thu, 24/09/2015 - 00:00

Egypt had agreed to buy two Mistral warships (futur L1010, Gamal Abdel Nasser ; from June 2 2016 and L1020, Anwar el Sadat ; from September 16 2016) and which France built for Russia before scrapping the sale over the Ukraine crisis, the deal is the second big military contract this year between France and Egypt. The two warships, which can each carry 16 helicopters, four landing craft and 13 tanks, were ordered by Russia in 2011 in a €1.2 billion euro deal.
Egypt would pay €950 million (US $1 billion) for the warships, with "significant" financing from Saudi Arabia. France found itself in an awkward situation as the delivery date neared in 2014, with ties between Russia and the West plunging to Cold War lows over Moscow's annexation of Crimea and support for separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Paris faced the wrath of its allies around the world if it were to deliver the technology to Russia, and decided to cancel the delivery. It was an expensive decision for France, which has had to foot the bill of over €1 billion for the upkeep of the ships and the cost of training 400 Russian sailors to crew them. After months of intense negotiations, France and Russia agreed on the reimbursement of the deal in August. Paris returned €949.7 million which had already been paid and also committed not to sell the two warships to a country that could "contravene Russia's interests," such as Poland or the Baltic states, a diplomatic source told AFP.

Several other countries were said to be interested in the warships, including Canada, India and Singapore. The Defense Ministry source who revealed the cost of the ships said they were due to be delivered to Egypt in March 2016.The deal comes after Egypt became the first foreign buyer of France's Rafale fighter jet, agreeing to purchase 24 in February in what Paris hailed as an "historic" accord. The €5.2 billion (US $5.9 billion) sale of the planes and a frigate was a rare triumph for France, which had failed to export its flagship multirole combat jet.

With Libya to the west wracked by instability, and the threat from Islamic State-linked jihadists on its eastern flank, Egypt has become a strategic partner to France despite a rights record sullied by Sisi's brutal crackdown on opponents. Sisi was elected president in May 2014 with almost 97 percent of the vote a year after toppling the country's first freely elected leader, Islamist Mohamed Morsi. A subsequent crackdown on Morsi's supporters left at least 1,400 dead and thousands more in jail. Sisi was also the subject of scathing global criticism over the detention and trial of Al-Jazeera journalists, two of whom he pardoned on Tuesday on the eve of a major Muslim holiday.

Tag: MistralRussiaEgyptBPC

NATO NRF : insuffisante face à la Russie

Thu, 20/08/2015 - 00:00

L'exercice d’alerte "Noble Jump" en Pologne a mis en lumière les défauts de la Force de réaction rapide de l’OTAN (NATO NRF) face à la Russie. La capacité de déploiement de la nouvelle force de réaction rapide de l'Otan, testée du 9 au 19 juin sur le camp d'entraînement de Zagan (ouest de la Pologne), est insuffisante face à la réactivité militaire russe, car les forces de l'Alliance ont besoin d'un mois au moins afin de déployer 30.000 militaires en Europe de l'Est. De son côté, la Russie a réussi en 24 heures à déplacer jusqu'à 100.000 soldats avec des équipements au cours de manœuvres militaires réalisées fin mai dans le District militaire central.

Les manœuvres en Pologne occidentale impliquent plus de 2.000 soldats provenant de neuf pays de l'OTAN. Les troupes aéroportées tchèques et néerlandaises, l'infanterie mécanisée allemande et norvégienne, les forces spéciales lituaniennes et polonaises, l'artillerie belge, des hélicoptères américains et une unité hongroise de coopération civilo-militaire y prennent part. L'exercice Noble Jump a été conçu pour tester les troupes de préparation élevée de l'OTAN dans les conditions du champ de bataille et veiller à ce que les concepts et les procédures soient prêts en cas de véritable crise. Le Pentagone a également révélé son intention de déployer en Europe de l'Est des chars, des véhicules blindés et des stocks d'armes lourdes, nécessaires afin d'équiper 5.000 soldats. En plus, il est prévu de créer un groupe "très mobile" fort de 30.000 soldats capables d'être rapidement déployés dans les pays Baltes, en Pologne, en Roumanie ou en Bulgarie en cas d'éventuelle "agression russe".

La formation qui se déroule en Pologne fait partie d'une série plus vaste d'activités de formation prévue en juin et appelée Allied Shield. La série comprend, outre Noble Jump :
- Baltops 2015, un exercice naval allié majeure en Pologne;
- Sabre Strike, un exercice de terrain dans les pays Baltes;
- et Trident Joust, un exercice de commandement et contrôle en Roumanie.
Au total, environ 15.000 soldats de 19 pays, dont le Canada, et trois pays partenaires participeront à cette série d'événements de formation qui se déroulent au sein de l'Alliance en 2015.

Sur fond de crise ukrainienne, l'OTAN a multiplié les manœuvres militaires conjointes dans les pays baltes ainsi qu'en Pologne. Moscou a exprimé ses préoccupations face au renforcement de la présence militaire de l'Alliance à proximité de ses frontières.

Source :
http://fr.sputniknews.com/international/20150615/1016545578.html

Tag: NATO NRFAllied ShieldNoble JumpSabre StrikeTrident Joust

Russian Super Aircraft Carrier - Project 23000E (Shtorm)

Sun, 31/05/2015 - 00:00

Project 23000E or Shtorm (Storm) is a multi-purpose, heavy aircraft carrier project being designed by the Krylov State Research Center for the Russian Navy. The cost of the supercarrier is estimated as being between $1.8 billion and $5.63 billion (at August 2015 exchange rates), with development expected to take ten years. The carrier is being considered for service with the Russian Navy's Northern Fleet. Nevskoye Design Bureau is also reported to be taking part in the development project.

A scale model of the ship is going to be demonstrated for the first time at the International Maritime Defence Show 2015 in St Petersburg from 1-5 July. The Project 23000E multipurpose aircraft carrier is designed to conduct operations in remote and oceanic areas, engage land-based and sea-borne enemy targets, ensure the operational stability of naval forces, protect landing troops, and provide the anti-aircraft defence. The design has a displacement of 90-100,000 tons, is 330 m in length, 40 m wide, and has a draft of 11 m. It has a top speed of 30 kt, cruising speed of 20 kt, a 120-day endurance, a crew of 4-5,000, and designed to withstand sea state 6-7. Currently it has been designed with a conventional power plant, although this could be replaced by a nuclear one, according to potential customers' requirements.

The ship carries a powerful air group of 80-90 deck-based aircraft for various combat missions. The model features a split air wing comprising navalised T-50 PAKFAs and MiG-29Ks, as well as jet-powered naval early warning aircraft, and Ka-27 naval helicopters. The carrier's flight deck is of a dual design, features an angled flight deck, and four launching positions: two via ski-jump ramps and two via electromagnetic catapults. One set of arrestor gear is included in the design. The design also features two islands; a feature only previously seen on the latest UK design.

Protection against air threats will be provided by four anti-aircraft missile system combat modules. An anti-torpedo armament suite is available. The electronic support complex includes integrated sensors, including a multifunction phased array radar, electronic warfare system, and communications suite.

Source
http://www.janes.com/article/51452/russia-developing-shtorm-supercarrier

Tag: Russian ArmyProject 23000E

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