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Friday, Apr 18th

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British al-Qaida turncoat to testify in trial of Bin Laden's son-in-law

UK turncoat to testifyA British man who plotted to shoe-bomb a plane for al-Qaida will on Monday begin a series of appearances as a star witness for the US government, testifying from London against Osama bin Laden’s son-in-law and propagandist.

Saajid Badat, who became a valuable turncoat after being jailed in 2005, is due to be beamed via video link into the Manhattan courtroom a few blocks from Ground Zero where Suleiman Abu Ghaith is on trial for conspiring to kill Americans and giving support to the jihadist network.

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50,000 Orthodox Jews in NYC protest Israel's proposed draft of religious citizens

orthodox jewsThousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews filled the streets in lower Manhattan on Sunday to protest Israel's proposal to draft strictly religious citizens into its army.

The gathering took up a stretch of 10 blocks, with dark-clothed demonstrators standing behind police barricades amid tight security. Organizers kept to tradition, with men and women in separate groups as they are at religious events.

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Julian Assange tells SXSW audience: ‘NSA has grown to be a rogue agency’

AssangeThe Wikileaks founder Julian Assange on Saturday told an audience in Texas that people power is the key to rolling back the power of the National Security Agency and other surveillance agencies.

“We have to do something about it. All of us have to do something about it,” he said, in an interview at the SXSW conference in Austin. “How can individuals do something about it? Well, we’ve got no choice.”

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Snowden: I raised NSA concerns internally over 10 times before going rogue

SnowdenFormer National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden said he repeatedly tried to go through official channels to raise concerns about government snooping programs but that his warnings fell on the deaf ears. In testimony to the European Parliament released Friday morning,

Snowden wrote that he reported policy or legal issues related to spying programs to more than 10 officials, but as a contractor he had no legal avenue to pursue further whistleblowing.

Asked specifically if he felt like he had exhausted all other avenues before deciding to leak classified information to the public, Snowden responded:

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35 Countries Where the U.S. Has Supported Fascists, Drug Lords and Terrorists

35 countries where US suuports evilThe U.S. is backing Ukraine's extreme right-wing Svoboda party and violent neo-Nazis whose armed uprising paved the way for a Western-backed coup. Events in the Ukraine are giving us another glimpse through the looking-glass of U.S. propaganda wars against fascism, drugs and terrorism.

The ugly reality behind the mirror is that the U.S. government has a long and unbroken record of working with fascists, dictators, druglords and state sponsors of terrorism in every region of the world in its elusive but relentless quest for unchallenged global power.

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Facebook cracks down on gun posts, sales

FacebookFacebook is cracking down on gun-related posts.

The social media giant is blocking minors from seeing postings of gun sales and will take down sales that don't require a background check or cross state lines.

The change is a win for groups like Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and Mayors Against Illegal Guns, which have been lobbying for more restrictive gun policies at businesses like Starbucks, Staples and now Facebook.

"On the same site that people are sharing birthday parties and family reunions,there are photos of AK-47s," says John Feinblatt, chairman of Mayors Against Illegal Guns. "This is not in the bowels of Facebook. This is upfront, center and easy to access."

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Edward Snowden to speak by teleconference at Texas SXSW festival

Edward SnowdenThe NSA leaker, who is living in exile, will appear by teleconference on Monday during the interactive portion of the annual Texas festival. He joins fellow wanted man Julian Assange, who is also speaking remotely at SXSW Interactive.

NSA leaker Edward Snowden will be on hand for an interview at South by Southwest Monday, but federal agents won't have anyone to arrest for espionage.

South by Southwest announced today that Snowden -- who is living in exile in Russia after his famous leak of countless documents detailing NSA surveillance -- will speak during the "Interactive" portion of the annual Austin, Texas, festival Monday at 11 a.m. Central by satellite. He will be in conversation with Christopher Soghoian, the American Civil Liberties Union's principal technologist.

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