North Korea 27 July Victory Day Celebrations May See Further Missile Launches and Nuclear Test as Ch
North Korea 27 July Victory Day Celebrations May See Further Missile Launches and Nuclear Test as China Threatens India and Japan
A study by German scholars at the Universities of Bielefeld and Osnabrück of self-radicalized Islamic extremists analyzed 5,757 WhatsApp messages found on a cellular phone seized by police following a terrorist attack in the spring of 2016. The messages were exchanged among 12 young men involved in the likely attack on a Sikh temple in Essen in April. The study found that based on the texts that the group had little real understanding of their own religion of Islam, but manipulated it to fit their beliefs.
In Sweden, a vehicle was rammed into a crowd near a shopping mall in Ullared injuring at least two people, the driver then tried to ignite the vehicle with a fuel canister before being arrested by security forces.
The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by the US-led coalition, launched their offensive to capture Raqqa on June 6, and have since taken several areas of ISIS self-proclaimed capital in bitter street by street fighting. Sadly, the Kurdish-led SDF has also clashed with Turkish-backed Syrian forces elsewhere in the country including in Ein Daqna, in the neighboring Aleppo province.
A week after the Iraqi government claimed victory in the siege to liberate Mosul from ISIS control there is still reports of fighting and airstrikes as the area is mopped-up. Two Canadians, five Germans and one 16-year-old girl are reportedly among 20 female ISIS fighters detained in Mosul. Interestingly, ISIS avoided using female suicide bombers up until June of this year, but has employed roughly 32 to date, suggesting the group is now desperate. It also suggests that women are no longer subordinate in the world of ISIS combat tactics meaning the return of ISIS brides to Europe and North America is likely to be increasingly bloody.
At least eight people are dead after a suspected female Boko Haram suicide bomber detonated at a mosque in Maiduguri city in northeastern Nigeria. At least 13 people were wounded.
Two Israeli soldiers were wounded after being run-over by a Palestinian terrorist near Hebron, while the attacker was shot dead on scene.
US airstrikes in Afghanistan have returned to a level of intensity not seen since American forces were still fanned out across the country and fighting Taliban and al-Qaeda militants in 2012. As of June 30, 2017, US and coalition aircraft have dropped or expended 1,634 munitions in Afghanistan this year. By way of comparison, in 2015 and 2016, that figure for munitions expended was 298 and 545 respectively.
The US has warned Turkey that its plan to purchase the advanced Russian S-400 surface-to-air-missile systems is not compatible NATO air defense systems.
Not surprisingly and despite rhetoric, the Trump administration certified to Congress late Monday that Iran has continued to meet the required conditions of its nuclear deal with the US and other world powers. But the Trump administration Tuesday announced new sanctions targeting Iran’s ballistic missile program and support for terrorism designating 18 entities and individuals supporting Iran’s missile programs, the military, and Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), and an Iranian transnational criminal organization.
The Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, speaking to CNN, commenting on US President Donald Trump’s Iranian policy warned that it was US allies in the region that supported ISIS, al-Qaeda, al-Nusra terror groups and not Iran. Iran of course sponsors, Hezbollah, Hamas, and a series of other Middle East and South West Asian terror groups to name but a few.
The US still reportedly has full use of al-Udeid Air Base in Qatar but has planned for contingencies to move operations elsewhere should the diplomatic spat between Qatar and four other Arab nations continue escalate.
US, Japanese and Indian navies on Monday concluded the 'Malabar Naval Exercise' aimed at achieving deeper military ties between the three nations and deterring Chinese naval forces in the Indian Ocean. The naval exercise featured 95 aircraft, 16 ships, two submarines, and including aircraft carriers from all three countries.
A Chinese brigade of troops 5-7000 strong carried out a live fire exercise in Tibet geared as a warning to India on Monday. Chinese and Indian troops remain locked in their worst stand-off in decades at the tri-border junction with Bhutan. China has again called for India to withdraw troops from a disputed territory in the Himalayan mountains, to avoid an "escalation of the situation." But, by all accounts, China is heavily reinforcing its ground units in Tibet a prime logistical hub for offensive action in the region.
Pakistan protested after India opened fire in Azad Jammu and Kashmir along the Line of Control, injuring at least five civilians, including three women.
Afghanistan’s embattled and exiled Vice President, General Abdul Rashid Dostum, attempted to return to Afghanistan to on Monday to challenge the President with his newly formed coalition and his plane was turned back.
In a series of first time incidents geared to provoke the Japanese government, two Chinese coast guard ships entered Japanese waters Monday off Aomori Prefecture. This followed an incident on Saturday where two Chinese coast guard ships intruded into Japanese waters around two islands off Kyushu. As well, on Monday, four Chinese coast guard ships entered Japanese territorial waters around the Senkaku Islands in Okinawa Prefecture. This follows Thursday’s flight of Xian H-6 strategic bomber over the waterway between the Japanese islands of Miyako and Okinawa to Japanese diplomatic protests. China said that the H-6 strategic bombers were operating legally and that Japan should get used to their overflights.
US Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Paul Selva said on Tuesday of North Korea’s recent Hwasong-14 Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile Test that, "I... am not sanguine that the test on the 4th of July demonstrates that they have the capacity to strike the United States with any degree of accuracy or reasonable confidence or success.” There is some thought that the US and its regional allies are bracing themselves for North Korea lashing out on or about July 27th, their so-called Victory Day marking the end of the Korean War (1950-53), with further ballistic missile launches and a potential nuclear test. US intelligence has warned that North Korea is preparing for an Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (IRBM) or Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) launch soon. China has backed away from any responsibility for the regime. Russia appears to be back-stopping China and North Korea to sweat the US and Japan.
North Korea carried out public executions on riverbanks, at school grounds, and marketplaces for charges such as stealing and prostitution.