In September, WND also broke the story that the slain U.S. ambassador, Christopher Stevens, played a central role in recruiting jihadists to fight Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria, according to Egyptian security officials.Stevens first arrived in Libya secretly in a cargo ship to serve as a liaison to the rebels fighting the Libyan regime of Moammar Gadhafi.
The ambassador’s last official meeting was with “a Turkish diplomat,” according to sources. Turkey is the main force behind Arab support for the opposition currently targeting Assad.
Last month, Middle Eastern security sources further described both the U.S. mission and nearby CIA annex in Benghazi as the main intelligence and planning center for U.S. aid to the rebels that was being coordinated with Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
Many rebel fighters are openly members of terrorist organizations, including al-Qaida.
Most news media covering the results of former Ambassador Thomas Pickering’s State Department investigation did not note the possible non-diplomatic nature and status of the Benghazi mission.
Pickering’s group concluded that systematic management and leadership failures at the State Department led to “grossly” inadequate security at the mission in Benghazi.
WND’s reporting showed how the mission’s special status may help explain why there was no major public security presence at what has been described as a “consulate.” Such a presence would draw attention to the shabby, nondescript building.
The security officials divulged Stevens served as a key contact with the Saudis to coordinate the recruitment by Saudi Arabia of Islamic fighters from North Africa and Libya. The jihadists were sent to Syria via Turkey to attack Assad’s forces, said the security officials.
The officials said Stevens also worked with the Saudis to send names of potential jihadi recruits to U.S. security organizations for review.
5. Black attacks on whites
Colin Flaherty has done more reporting than any other journalist on what appears to be a nationwide trend of skyrocketing black-on-white crime, violence and abuse.
WND has featured the reports to counterbalance the virtual blackout by the rest of the media due to their concern that reporting such incidents would be inflammatory or even racist. WND considers it racist not to report racial abuse solely because of the skin color of the perpetrators or victims.
In his book “White Girl Bleed a Lot,” Flaherty documents hundreds of examples of black mob violence in more than 80 cities, big and small, throughout the country.
He also shows how the media and public officials ignore, condone, excuse and even lie about the wave of lawlessness.
Despite a growing mountain of evidence, some still deny the problem exists, which is why he has provided links to reported incidents of racial mob violence throughout the country.
In his book, Flaherty quotes St. Louis writer and activist Umar Lee, who says police often ignore the racial element of a crime, because it makes their city look bad.
“Most of the people who get beat up are vegans, gays, artists, non-violent types,” Lee said. “Many are kids from the suburbs or recent immigrants. People who are not prepared to defend themselves. There are white neighborhoods – blue collar, middle class neighborhoods – where these folks will not go because they know that people there are willing to defend themselves.”
The latest “random” happened earlier this month in downtown Wilmington, N.C.
Four black people decided they needed money for marijuana and travel, so they decided to look for a “white person in a good neighborhood (because) they’re bound to have money lying around,” said one of the suspected killers to the Wilmington Star News.
They tried to break into a home but ran away after they discovered someone was there. So they moved to the downtown area, where three of the group followed a woman for several blocks while the fourth trailed in their getaway car.
The woman escaped. And almost, but not quite, dialed 911.
Joshua Proutey was next, sitting nearby in his truck eating a sandwich when the mob found the 20-year-old white college student. They demanded money. He gave them all he had, $10. They took his cell phone.
Then they shot him in the head.
6. The feds’ unwillingness to prosecute HSBC’s massive fraud and support for terrorists and the drug cartel
WND’s “Whistleblower of the Year,” former HSBC vice president and relationship manager in Long Island, N.Y., was ignored by law enforcement authorities until he brought to WND approximately 1,000 pages of customer account records.
John Cruz in interview with WND’s Jerome Corsi
Earlier this month, as WND reported , Cruz, called the $1.92 billion fine the U.S. government imposed on HSBC “a joke” and filed a $10 million lawsuit for “retaliation and wrongful termination.”Significantly, the HSBC settlement with the Justice Department allows all bank officers and directors who may have been aware of or participated in the alleged criminal banking activities to be free of criminal investigation and prosecution in exchange for HSBC agreeing to pay the $1.92 billion fine.
Whistleblowers in India and London are joining Cruz in charging the HSBC settlement amounts to a massive “cover up.” Avoiding criminal investigation and prosecution, they say, allows not only HSBC bank officers and directors to avoid further public scrutiny but also any government officials who may have turned a blind eye to HSBC improprieties.
Cruz has insisted to WND that it is impossible to believe HSBC laundered billions of dollars in Mexican drug cartel money, worked with terrorists through affiliate banking operations in Saudi Arabia and circumvented Obama administration banking sanctions against Iran – all activities specifically charged by the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations – without the knowledge and perhaps complicity of U.S. government officials in the U.S. Treasury, the Federal Reserve, the CIA and the NSA in an era in which government officials are capable of reading the emails of ordinary citizens.
In response to WND’s reporting earlier this year of Cruz’s evidence, HSBC lodged a complaint that blocked Internet access to one of the WND stories, and senior reporter Jerome Corsi was fired by the New York City investment firm he had worked with for two years as a senior managing director, Gilford Securities.
In June, WND reported evidence Eric Holder’s Justice Department has not investigated money-laundering charges in deference to bank clients of his Washington-based law firm, where Holder was a partner prior to joining the Obama administration.
WND reported in October HSBC was engaged in a systematic scheme to defraud citizens of India who live abroad out of billion of dollars in investment accounts, according to an Indian source who provided evidence.
See WND’s two-part interview with John Cruz:
Part I LINK Part II LINK
7. The real cost of Obamacare
Though Democrats priced Obamacare at “only” $938 billion when it passed, the Congressional Budget Office’s conservative estimation shortly after the surprising 5-4 Supreme Court decision in June upholding its individual mandate placed the cost at more than $2 trillion over the course of its real first decade, 2014 through 2023.
The so-called Affordable Health Care Act also would still leave 30 million people uninsured, the CBO said in July.
Even the $2 trillion estimate probably is too low, however, because it only reflects the costs of “insurance coverage provisions” and not Obamacare as a whole.
Obamacare’s overall 10-year costs would likely surpass $2.5 trillion, based on the CBO’s previous estimates.
This month, the CBO said Obamacare contains 20 new or higher taxes, and five of them will be in effect Jan. 1. From 2013 to 2022, taxpayers will face a net $1 trillion hike.
In addition, health insurance premiums and overall U.S. health costs are going up. Along with the increase in taxes for individuals and businesses, it will drain some $1 trillion from Medicare from 2014 through 2023.
Obamacare also will reduce reimbursement rates for Medicare and establish a 15-member Independent Payment Advisory Board to establish further Medicare cuts.
The CBO has said Obamacare would cause between 4 and 6 million Americans to lose their employer-sponsored insurance.
Employers already have indicated they will cut back employee hours to avoid paying the costs, eliminating an estimated 800,000 jobs by 2020-2021, according to the CBO.
At the International Franchise Association convention in Washington, D.C., in September, David Barr, a Taco Bell and Kentucky Fried Chicken franchiser, said Obamacare likely will cut his profits in half.
This month, 18 senators who voted for Obamacare are lobbying against its “job-killing tax” regarding medical devices.
The lawmakers sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid this month saying they wanted to delay the start of the tax, because the medical technology industry “directly employs over 400,000 people in the United States and is responsible for a total of 2 million high-skilled manufacturing jobs.”
“With this year quickly drawing to a close, the medical device industry has received little guidance about how to comply with the tax – causing significant uncertainty and confusion.”
Zimmer Holdings, which makes hip replacement implants, laid off 450 workers in expectation of a $60 million tax bill in 2013. Stryker Corp., a similar company, laid off 5 percent of its employees for the same reason.
Critics say shortfalls will leave the American taxpayer on the hook for Obamacare. They contend it’s part of a larger plan to move everyone out of private insurance and into the government system.
Meanwhile, Obamacare has a cost of another kind. Religious organizations and business owners who object to its mandate to pay for abortifacients have had to go to court to defend their constitutional rights.
District judges in four states have issued rulings to protect companies while they fight what they describe as a blatant violation of the owners’ religious rights.
8. National Defense Authorization Act, which allows for the indefinite detention of U.S. citizens.
The NDAA, signed by Barack Obama at the end of 2011, effectively, according to critics and at least one judge, created a new power for the federal government that declares the United States to be a battlefield in the war on terror and authorizes indefinite detention, without charge or trial, of all persons on U.S. soil suspected of terrorist activity or accused of “belligerent behavior.”
State legislatures, declaring the law unconstitutional, are fighting back. The Michigan House of Representatives is one of the latest, unanimously passing a law that states “no agency of this state, no political subdivision of this state, no employee of an agency of this state or a political subdivision of this state acting in his or her official capacity, and no member of the Michigan national guard on official state duty shall aid an agency of the armed forces of the United States in any investigation, prosecution, or detention of any person pursuant to section 1021 of the national defense authorization act.”WND recently reported a bill in Texas stipulates that anyone trying to enforce a citizen detention according to the NDAA could be apprehended and given a year in jail and a $10,000 fine.
House Bill 149The Texas Liberty Preservation Act explains that the president “has asserted that the Authorization for the Use of Military Force, enacted in 2001, authorizes the president to indefinitely detain, without charge, any person, including a citizen of the United States or a lawful resident alien, regardless of whether the person is apprehended inside or outside the borders of the United States.”
The NDAA, according to the Texas bill, violates the Texas Constitution, the limits of federal power authorized by Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution and the legal doctrine of Posse Comitatus.
It also violates habeas corpus, the Texas bill says, the First Amendment, the Fourth Amendment, the Fifth Amendment, the Sixth Amendment, the Eighth Amendment and the 14th Amendment.
9. The real unemployment numbers
An unemployment rate of over 8 percent is a sign of an unhealthy economy, but the figures reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics don’t give a complete picture.
The real conditions are much worse.
In January 2012, for example, when the rate was reported to be 8.3 percent, the true rate was closer to 22.5 percent, according to John Williams, author of the Shadow Government Statistics website.
He contends that the federal government manipulates the reporting of economic data for political purposes.
In the Feb. 3 Bureau of Labor Statistics news release, the unemployment rate was reported to have fallen 0.2 percent to 8.3 percent, from 8.5 percent in December 2011.Williams recreates a Shadow Government Statistics alternative unemployment rate reflecting methodology that includes “long-term discouraged workers” who the Bureau of Labor Statistics – in 1994 under the Clinton administration) – removed from those considered “unemployed.”
The BLS no longer considers as “unemployed” workers without jobs who have not looked for work in the past year because they believe no jobs are available.
Williams has demonstrated that it takes an expert to truly decipher BLS unemployment statistics. For instance, in Table A-15, titled “Alternative measures of labor underutilization,” the BLS reports what is known as “U6 unemployment.” U6 unemployment includes those marginally attached to the labor force and the “under-employed,” those who have accepted part-time jobs when they are really looking for full-time employment.
While the BLS was reporting seasonally adjusted unemployment in January 2012 at only 8.3 percent, it was also reporting U6 seasonally adjusted unemployment in January 2012 was 15.1 percent.
The only measure BLS reports to the public as the official monthly unemployment rate is the seasonally adjusted U3 number.
Williams calculates his “Official SGS Alternative Unemployment Rate” by adding back into to the BLS U6 numbers the long-term discouraged workers who have not looked for work in the past year.
Interestingly, Williams’ “Official SGS Alternative Unemployment Rate” showed unemployment in January 2012 was 22.5 percent, a 0.1 percent increase over December 2011, whereas the BLS figures reported a .8-point decline, from a seasonally adjusted U3 rate of 9.1 percent in January 2011 to a seasonally adjusted 8.3 percent rate in January 2012.
10. Fast and Furious
Eric Holder, in June, became the first attorney general to be voted in contempt of a congressional subpoena when he refused to turn over tens of thousands of internal Justice Department documents related to the gun-smuggling scandal “Fast and Furious.”
Holder instead opened an internal investigation by the Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General that left critical questions unanswered.
In September, the inspector general, Michael Horowitz, testified to Congress that he was unable to pursue important leads in the case because of the White House’s refusal to release relevant communications and the refusal of a White House official to be interviewed.
An external report in October from Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Sen. Chuck Grassley and House oversight committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa found the program was a “deliberate strategy created at the highest levels of the Justice Department aimed at identifying the leaders of a major gun trafficking ring.”
The stated aim of the Justice Department program was to trace guns to the “big fish” in the Mexican cartel, but the practice of “gunwalking” put more than 2,000 weapons on the street south of the border that have been used in hundreds of murders. Two guns found at the scene of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry’s murder by cartel killers were traced to guns the ATF deliberately allowed to be sold to known cartel straw buyers in American gun shops in violation of federal gun laws.
In 2011, emails were uncovered showing that Attorney General Eric Holder’s Justice Department has used the proliferation of cartel weapons to call for expanded gun control regulations.
Holder falsely testified in 2011 regarding when he first knew about Fast and Furious.
While Holder has kept his job, William McMahon, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms official who was in charge of field operations during Fast and Furious, was fired and acting Deputy Attorney General Gary Grindler and Assistant Attorney General Jason Weinstein, among others, were forced out.