53 Anniversary of the Assassination of U.S. President J.F.K

53 Years Ago on November 22nd 1963, the 35th President of the United States, John Fitzgerald (aka “Jack”) Kennedy, was assassinated in Dallas, Texas while riding with his wife in the Presidential motorcade. The Democrat, who only served one presidential term before his assassination, was the youngest person to be elected to the Presidency. He has been celebrated for his inspirational speeches, the establishment of the Peace Corps and his investment in the “space race”, as well as his handling of the “Cuban Missile Crisis”. However, President Kennedy, who also presided over the civil rights movement, initiated the American War in Vietnam and oversaw attempts to overthrow the Cuban government and assassinate Cuban President Fidel Castro, most notably in 1961, during the CIA orchestrated “Bay of Pigs Invasion”. Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested for the assassination, and would himself be assassinated two days later. Historian David Talbot, in his book The Devil’s Chessboard, puts forward the case that the then CIA Director, Allen Dulles, organized the assassination of JFK, after he was fired by the President following the Bay of Pigs debacle.  

Turkey Issues Arrest Warrant For Syrian Kurdish Leader of PYD

Salih Muslim, the leader of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria, is one of 48 Kurdish fighters, who have been targeted by arrest warrants issued today by the Turkish government.  The PYD, which receives support from the Russians and the Americans, is considered to be one of the most effective fighting forces against ISIL. They have also engage in combat against other Islamist groups, backed by the Turks, such as Ahrar Al Sham and Jabhat Fatah Al Sham, which have been targeting the Kurds in northern Syria. The warrants allege that the 48 Kurds are guilty of orchestrating a suicide bombing in Turkey that targeted a military base in Ankara, which killed 28 people and wounded scores of others. Sources close to Salih Muslim informed TRNN that he is currently attending conferences within the United Kingdom and was scheduled to have a meeting at the FCO as well as attend to meetings at the Houses of Parliament.

Ankara deals with the PYD in Syria as little more than an extension of the PKK in Turkey. The PKK, who are a proscribed organisation by Turkey, the US and the EU, have been struggling for autonomy in a conflict which has taken over 40,000 lives since the Kurdish insurgency in Turkey began. The Turkish state openly opposes any form of Kurdish autonomy in Syria, which it fears could both weaken its hand in Syria and embolden the Kurds in Turkey. Turkey is also allied with extremist Islamist groups inside Syria and has been accused of directly supporting ISIS in order to overthrow the Syrian government. Turkish military forces and their allied rebels clashed with Kurdish led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) yesterday leading to casualties on both sides. President Erdoğan of Turkey is currently engaged in an unprecedented crackdown against the Kurdish population, targeting NGOs, news agencies, politicians and the wider public.

National Policy Institute Holds “Hail Trump” Event

The “alt-right” National Policy Institute held its annual conference last Saturday in Washington D.C. Video footage from the event that was published yesterday shows the organization’s president, Richard Spencer, greeting the audience with the cry “hail trump, hail our people, hail our victory!” Many of the attendees raised their hand in response using the Nazi salute favored by Fascists in early twentieth century Europe. The National Policy Institute, founded in 2005, is known for its hostility towards immigration, “multiculturalism” and traditional liberal norms, and for promoting white supremacist and racist views it considers as part of the “alt-right” movement. Richard Spencer, who is believed to have coined the term “alt-right”, is also the Director of the Institute and founder of Radix Journal, which is also published by the National Policy Institute.  The Institute’s website states its mission as “dedicated to the heritage, identity, and future of European people in the United States, and around the world.” Stephen Bannon, the chief executive officer of Trump’s campaign who has recently been named as Trump’s chief strategist and senior counsel,  described the Breitbart News Network (which Bannon used to chair), as the platform for the “alt-right.” President-elect Trump was called upon to condemn the Institute, but has thus far refused to do so.

Snowden Downplays Trump’s Importance

Former NSA contractor and whistleblower Edward Snowden shared his views of the results of the US election during an internet conference held in Stockholm on Monday. Snowden said that the position of president of the United States is an “important position, but it’s one of many.” When asked about Donald Trump’s choice for the position of CIA director, Mike Pompeo, a man who has frequently called for Snowden’s execution, Snowden said that he “doesn’t care” and even if he dies, he still believes in the decisions that he made. Snowden, who attended the conference via video link from Russia, urged his audience not to become discouraged and to continue the struggle for their right to privacy and right to be free from both government and corporate surveillance.

Egyptian Court Overturns Morsi’s Life Sentence

The Egyptian Court of Cassation, the Supreme Court of Egypt’s Common Court System, yesterday quashed one of two life sentences given to former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi. Morsi, whose death sentence was also overturned last week by the same court, has one life sentence remaining, which is due for examination by the Court of Cassation later this month. The remaining life sentence was handed down following Morsi’s conviction on charges of spying for Qatar. However, Morsi is not expected to be released even if the second life sentence is overturned, because he is still serving a 20-year sentence following a conviction related to the killing of protestors during anti-government demonstrations. This conviction was upheld by the Egyptian appeals court last month. Morsi was the first president elected in Egypt in democratic elections. As a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, he faced fierce opposition from the Egyptian military brass, which orchestrated a military coup against him in 2013. Since that time, President Abdel Fattah A-Sisi has taken power. Following the coup, the Muslim Brotherhood, which is by far and away the most organized and viable opposition party, was proscribed as a terrorist organization and banned in Egypt.