Turkey’s president says arrested US consulate staffer is a spy

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday branded a US consulate staffer who was arrested by Turkish authorities a spy and said it was Turkey’s right to take steps against “an internal threat,” in the latest swipe in an escalating feud with the United States.

Speaking at a news conference in Belgrade, Serbia, Erdogan also accused the US ambassador to Turkey of wrecking ties between the NATO allies by suspending the issuing of visas to Turkish citizens at US diplomatic missions following the arrest of Metin Topuz, a Turkish citizen employed at the US consulate in Istanbul.

The US suspended considering visa applications on Sunday saying it wanted to reassess Turkey’s commitment to the safety of US personnel. Turkey retaliated by halting visas services in the US.

“How did these spies infiltrate the American consulate? If they didn’t infiltrate the American consulate, who put them there?” Erdogan said, speaking alongside the Serbian president. “No state would allow such spies that pose an internal threat.” He was referring to Topuz as well as a second consulate employee whom Turkish authorities say they want to question.

Turkish authorities accuse Topuz of espionage and alleged ties to US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen’s movement, which Turkey says was behind last year’s failed coup.

Earlier, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said Turkey did not need Washington’s permission to prosecute its citizens and slammed the US for the arrest of a Turkish banker for his alleged role in helping Iran escape US sanctions, and for its failure to extradite Gulen.

US Ambassador John Bass said in a video message released late Monday that Turkish authorities had failed to show any evidence against Topuz and that he had insufficient access to a lawyer. He also said the arrest “raised questions whether the goal of some officials is to disrupt the longstanding cooperation between Turkey and the US.”

Ties between the two NATO allies were already strained over Gulen’s presence in the United States and Washington’s support for Syrian Kurdish militia, whom Turkey considers to be terrorists because of their links to Kurdish militants fighting Turkey. Separate indictments in the US against Erdogan’s bodyguards who were embroiled in violence and against the banker and a former Turkish economy minister accused of conspiring to violate US sanctions had deepened the rift.

State-run Anadolu Agency said Topuz had allegedly communicated with former police chiefs in a 2013 corruption probe — which the government claims was instigated by Gulen’s supporters — and with other officers allegedly involved in the attempted coup. Gulen denies involvement in the coup attempt.

Bass said it was part of Topuz’s duty to be in contact with police officers.


Israeli soccer fan arrested after rushing Spanish player with knife


Six Israeli fans were arrested Monday night in Jerusalem after they rushed the field and one of them approached a member of the Spanish national team carrying a knife.

Israel’s national soccer team fell 1-0 to Spain in the home game that marked the final match in Israel’s failed bid to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

Immediately after the game, the six fans rushed onto the field. One of them separated from the group and rushed toward Francisco Suárez, commonly known as Isco, a Real Madrid midfielder who plays on the country’s national team.

As the Israeli fan approached, the knife fell from his hands.

He was apprehended by police before reaching Isco.

There is no immediate word from police about the fan’s intentions.

Israel’s 1-0 loss against one of the world’s finest teams brought to an end a troubled season, despite a well-played game.

Spanish midfielder Asier Illarramendi scored the only goal of the match in the 76th minute, with a brilliant kick following a corner, struck with his right foot from well outside the penalty area.

The ball curved into the net centimeters from the outstretched arm of goalkeeper Ariel Harush.

The first half had been fairly lackluster, in a match that made no difference to the final standings, with neither team summoning the drive to make a serious attempt on goal.

However, the Spaniards encamped at the Israeli goal in the second half, threatening with runs, corners and crosses until they finally put the ball in the back of the net.

Israel immediately pushed back, spending several minutes in the Spanish half. Spain found the net again three minutes from time, but the goal was disallowed because the striker was offside.

In the final half minute, Israel squandered a chance to equalize.

The game was held at Jerusalem’s Teddy Stadium, which was packed with a capacity crowd.

The outcome of the match had no bearing on either squad’s World Cup fortunes, with Israel knocked out of contention, finishing fourth in Group G, and Spain having already secured its spot next year in Russia at the top of the group.

Despite high hopes among Israeli soccer fans that the national team would make it to the World Cup for the first time since 1970, the bid ended in failure and frustration, notably characterized by the suspension and subsequent resignation of the squad’s captain Eran Zehavi after he tore off his captain’s armband in the final minutes of a vital qualification game that Israel lost to Macedonia last month.

Israel notched only three victories during its campaign, two against Lichtenstein and the other a 3-0 win over Albania last November. The match against Albania was played under tight security measures after police reportedly busted a group of 15 people in Albania, Kosovo and Macedonia who were planning an attack during the game near the capital Tirana.

NJ Jewish children’s performer arrested on child pornography charges

(JTA) — A New Jersey music teacher and singer who has performed for children at synagogues, JCCs and camps over the past two decades was charged with receiving and distributing child pornography.

Eric Komar, 46, was charged Tuesday in U.S. Magistrate Court in Newark after being arrested last week by special agents of the FBI Child Exploitation Task Force, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New Jersey. He is being held without bail.

Komar used a peer-to-peer file-sharing program to obtain and distribute images and videos that featured prepubescent children being sexually abused, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Following his arrest, Komar allegedly admitted to having “a large library of child pornography” containing “thousands of images and videos,” the Forward reported, citing court documents.

The charge against Komar carries a prison sentence of five to 20 years as well as a $250,000 fine.



LONDON – British police arrested an 18-year-old man in the southern port of Dover on Saturday in a “significant” development in the hunt for the people behind a London commuter train bombing that injured 30 people a day earlier.

Prime Minister Theresa May put Britain on the highest security level of “critical” late on Friday, meaning an attack may be imminent, and soldiers and armed police deployed to secure strategic sites and hunt down the perpetrators.

The home-made bomb shot flames through a packed commuter train during the Friday morning rush hour in west London but apparently failed to detonate fully.

“We have made a significant arrest in our investigation this morning,” said Neil Basu, Senior National Coordinator for Counter Terrorism Policing.

“Although we are pleased with the progress made, this investigation continues and the threat level remains at critical.”

The arrest was made in the port area of Dover, where passenger ferries sail to France.

The blast on the London tube train at the Parsons Green underground station was the fifth major terrorism attack in Britain this year and was claimed by Islamic State.


Britain deployed hundreds of soldiers at strategic sites such as nuclear power plants and ministry of defense sites on Saturday to free up armed police to help in the hunt for those behind the bombing.

The last time Britain was put on “critical” alert was after a man killed 22 people at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester in May. Prior to that it had not been triggered since 2007.

“For this period, military personnel will replace police officers on guard duties at certain protected sites,” May said in a televised statement.

“The public will see more armed police on the transport network and on our streets providing extra protection. This is a proportionate and sensible step which will provide extra reassurance and protection while the investigation progresses.”

The bomb struck as passengers were traveling to the center of the British capital. Some suffered burns and others were injured in a stampede to escape from the station, one of the above-ground stops on the underground network. Health officials said none was thought to be in a serious condition.

Pictures taken at the scene showed a slightly charred white plastic bucket with wires coming out of the top in a supermarket shopping bag on the floor of a train carriage.

“I was on the second carriage from the back. I just heard a kind of ‘whoosh.’ I looked up and saw the whole carriage engulfed in flames making its way towards me,” Ola Fayankinnu, who was on the train, told Reuters.

“There were phones, hats, bags all over the place and when I looked back I saw a bag with flames.”

The Islamic State militant group have claimed other attacks in Britain this year, including two in London and the pop concert in Manchester.

It was not immediately possible to verify the claim about Parsons Green, for which Islamic State’s news agency Amaq offered no evidence.

Western intelligence officials have questioned similar claims in the past, saying that while Islamic State’s jihadist ideology may have inspired some attackers, there is scant evidence that it has orchestrated attacks.

New York man arrested for sending anti-Semitic email to Jewish official

A Westchester County, New York, man was arrested for allegedly sending an anti-Semitic email to a town supervisor who had been pushing to remove a monument to Confederate soldiers in a private cemetery.

Timothy Goetze of White Plains was arrested on Wednesday and charged with aggravated harassment as a hate crime. Police did not say what was in the letter but said it targeted Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner, who is Jewish.

Feiner had supported the removal of the monument in Mount Hope Cemetery in Hastings, New York, but at the beginning of the month he reconsidered, saying the obelisk-shaped monument was a symbol of reconciliation rather than of the Confederacy or white supremacy, the Journal News reported.

“While we respect everyone’s right to free speech, this was clearly a case where that line was crossed,” Greenburgh Police Chief Chris McNerney said of Goetze’s letter in a statement. “We want to send a message that such hate filled threats will be fully investigated and those responsible will be brought to justice.”

This isn’t the first time Feiner was on the receiving end of alleged anti-Semitic invective. In 2014, a local fire chief apologized after colleagues deposed in an age-discrimination lawsuit said the chief often used anti-Semitic language to refer to Feiner.

Greenburgh, a mostly affluent suburb of New York City, includes six independent villages and a sizable Jewish population.

Bank has entire Arab-American family arrested after father tries to deposit large check from home sale

In Kansas, an Iraqi-American doctoral student was arrested along with his family after attemping to deposit a large check from the sale of their old house.

According to Wichita State’s student newspaper The Sunflower, Sattar Ali, who moved to the United States in 1993, took a check for $151,000 from the sale of his family’s old house in Michigan to Wichita’s Emprise Bank. As he told local news station KAKE, he brought verification documents along with him, but a few minutes after he first presented tellers with the check, he was in handcuffs.

After being taken outside, Ali discovered his wife Hadil and their 15-year-old daughter Hawra were in the backseat of the police car waiting for him. Sometime during their three-hour detainment, Ali said police called his 11-year-old son’s school to tell them to hold him because his parents had been arrested.

He said he didn’t discover until after they were released that he and his family had been arrested because the bank claimed they could not verify the large check and believed it was fraudulent.

“No one told me why I was being arrested until we were being released,” Ali told The Sunflower. “They didn’t read me rights or anything.”
“We were devastated. Terrified. Crying the whole time,” Ali said. “We had no idea what the arrest was for.”

Ali told The Sunflower he believes he and his family were racially profiled because the large check came from someone with his name and not someone named “James or Robert.”

“Let’s assume I made a mistake and gave them a bad check,” Ali said. “Why would they arrest my wife and daughter?”

Ali, who along with his wife and children are American citizens, lived in Wichita from 1998 to 2008, and was returning to get his doctorate in engineering from Wichita State, where his eldest son is a freshman. He said the arrest marked his first time feeling unwelcome in the Kansas city.
“I would expect this in the 1950s,” Ali said. “Not now.”

‘ISIS Commander’ Arrested by Libyan Authorities Exposed as Israeli Mossad Agent
By Jay Syrmopoulos

Benghazi, Libya – Lending credence to the theory that ISIS operates as a strategic asset of the Israeli Mossad, Libyan security forces have arrested an ISIS leader in the north-eastern Libyan city of Benghazi – who just so happens to be a Mossad agent.

The man arrested, Ephraim Benjamin, was allegedly an Israeli Mossad agent who began his operation following the 2011 toppling of the Libyan government that resulted in the murder of Libyan President Moammar Ghaddafi, according to the Israeli website Inian Merkazi, which translates to “Central Issues.”

The Mossad agent reportedly held a leading position in ISIS after mingling with Libyans during the fall of Ghaddafi. He then became a prominent imam of a large mosque in Benghazi, Libya’s second largest city, before becoming a ISIS leader who commanded a contingent of upwards of 200 terrorists.

Known in Libya as Abu Hafs, the Mossad agent was arrested and accused by Libyan authorities of gathering intelligence information for the Israeli government.

It is believed that Benjamin, aka Hafs, was a Mossad “Arabist,” which are undercover Israeli spies with Arab features, and who speak fluent Arabic in local dialects, according to the Masr Alarabia website.

The Mossad has a long history of utilizing “Arabists” to infiltrate Palestinian protests and arrest demonstrators as well as assassinating Palestinian anti-occupation activists, according to Masr Alarabia.

Libyan media outlets describe Benjamin as the “Mossad sheikh” who was arrested by local authorities.

Inian Merkazi cited the incident as evidence used by Arab media to justify the argument — popular in much of the Arab world — that Israel is complicit in the rise of ISIS in the region and uses the group as a strategic asset.

Additionally, the fact that ISIS has never so much as attempted an attack within the state of Israel bolsters that line of thinking.

ISIS is popularly believed to have begun official operations within Libya in February of 2015 by beheading 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in the city of Sirte, but terror operations were believed to have been committed by the terrorist group prior to that date.

Seemingly confirming an Israel-ISIS connection, a 15-page report by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on the work of the U.N. Disengagement Observer Force revealed that the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) maintained regular contact with the Islamic State since May of 2013.

While initial reports by the IDF claimed they provided medical care for civilians on the Israeli-Syrian border, UN observers confirmed direct contact between ISIS and IDF soldiers – which included, but was not limited to, medical care.

Throughout the reporting period, UNDOF frequently observed armed members of the opposition interacting with the IDF across the cease-fire line,” according to the report. “On one occasion UNDOF observed the IDF on the Alpha side [inside Israel] handing over two boxes to armed opposition on the Bravo side [inside Syria].”

These activities in concert seem to indicate a coordinated and ongoing support of the Islamic State by Israel. Essentially, the Israelis are utilizing ISIS as a proxy force in an effort to topple the Assad government.

Tellingly, when the U.S. began operations against the Islamic State, the Israeli high command was reluctant to support the move and called the actions of the United States a mistake.

For those not understanding why Israel would support ISIS, it comes down to geopolitical strategy. The Israeli government perceives allies Iran and Syria as direct threats to the Jewish state, as both maintain significant regional military capabilities and political clout.

Israel’s support for ISIS would seem to confirm that they believe in the old adage, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

In this particular circumstance support for the Islamic State equates to Israel eliminating geopolitical rival Syria – under Bashar al-Assad – which would then negate Iranian influence in the region.

It comes down to the simple fact that ISIS is a useful tool for Israel to impose it’s geopolitical will, without having to directly involve themselves in a hot conflict, thus seeming as if they are uninvolved in the conflict.

Once the Syrian government has been toppled, and Iranian influence on the Israeli border largely negated, Israel could then set its sights on the Islamic State – provided they were no longer of use to the Jewish state.

While states such as Israel and the United States often loudly proclaim to be against terrorism, in reality, both governments utilize terrorist groups, such as ISIS and al-Qaeda, to undermine regimes they wish to overthrow or gain influence within.

Please share this article to expose the complicity of states such as Israel and the United States in fomenting Islamic terrorism!

This article originally appeared on The Free Thought Project.

4 UK soldiers arrested over neo-Nazi activity, terror charges


Four British soldiers and alleged members of a banned neo-Nazi group were arrested on Tuesday for terror offenses, police said.

Britain’s Ministry of Defense confirmed that the men — arrested on suspicion of being members of the outlawed far-right group, National Action — were serving members of the army.

Last December, National Action became the first far-right group to be outlawed by the government — six months after the assassination of lawmaker Jo Cox by a far-right sympathizer.

Membership or inviting support for the organization is a criminal offense carrying a sentence of up to 10 years imprisonment.

The four suspects are being held “on suspicion of being concerned in the commission, preparation and instigation of acts of terrorism,” West Midlands police said in a statement.

Police did not name the four but said they were aged between 22 and 32 and came from Birmingham, Ipswich and Northampton in England and Powys in Wales.

“The arrests were pre-planned and intelligence-led; there was no threat to the public’s safety,” the statement said, adding that raids were also being carried out in “a number of properties.”

Cox, an MP from the main opposition Labour party, was shot and stabbed to death in her constituency by far-right nationalist Thomas Mair in June 2016.

Mair shouted “Britain first!” as he killed her.

At the time, Interior Minister Amber Rudd branded the organization as “racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic.”

In June this year, van driver Darren Osborne allegedly mowed down Muslim worshippers near a London mosque, leaving one person dead.

Prosecutors said Osborne was “motivated by extreme political views and a personal hatred of Muslims.” He is currently in custody awaiting trial.

Palestinian policeman arrested for incitement, praised Hitler on Facebook

A senior member of the Palestinian security forces was arrested on suspicion of online incitement, including posting content that glorified Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, the Shin Bet security service said in a statement Tuesday.

Muhammad al-Sawiti was arrested in August after posting on Facebook “extremist content that constitutes a direct call for violent action against Jews, as well as praise and support for the actions of [Palestinian] attackers,” the Shin Bet said.

He also posted pictures of Hitler and Adolf Eichmann along with expressions of admiration for “people like them,” the Shin Bet said.

Sawiti is a “senior employee” in the Palestinian Preventive Security service offices in the northern West Bank city of Jenin. One of the functions of the PPS is to foil terror attacks against Israel.

One picture posted by Sawiti online featured the World War II leader giving his signature Nazi salute, with the Arabic caption: “We need Hitler.”

Another of Eichmann, who was a key organizer of the Final Solution, had an accompanying slogan expressing longing for more leaders like him.

Another photo of the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem called for “blood to be spilled” for the holy site.

Sawiti was charged with incitement Monday at the Judea military court in the West Bank.

A Facebook post by Muhammad al-Sawiti, a member of the Palestinian security services, praising Nazi mastermind Adolf Eichmann (Shin Bet)
“It should be emphasized that incitement activity on networks, and social networks in particular, inflames passions and may lead to terrorist acts,” the Shin Bet said.

The domestic security agency said it “will continue to act to neutralize and thwart online incitement to terrorism.”

22 suspected pedophiles arrested in nationwide raids

Police arrested 22 suspected pedophiles in raids overnight Monday across the country.

The arrests capped a three-month-long undercover operation that identified 31 suspects, police said in a statement.

The evidence indicated crimes of indecent acts and sexual harassment against children on the internet.

“We take a very serious view of any harm to minors or those who are helpless, and that includes crime in the virtual space,” the statement said.

Dozens of officers raided the homes of the suspects, arrested them, confiscated their computers and cellphones, and gathered other evidence, police said.

Officers will later in the day request an extension of their detention and more arrests are expected.

According to police, the suspects, all men, were aged 24-60 and most have no criminal record.

Israel Radio reported that there was apparently no coordination or other connection between the suspects.

Police said that despite the difficulties in acting against cyber-criminals, it uses advanced technology to “bring to arrest criminal pedophiles who prey on our children online and endanger their physical and emotional welfare.”