US-Soldaten in Afghanistan

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12.11.2018

"'Tell Your Boss': Recording Is Seen to Link Saudi Crown Prince More Strongly to Khashoggi Killing"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/12/world/middleeast/jamal-khashoggi-killing-saudi-arabia.html

Ein enger Berater von Kronprinz Mohammed bin Salman ist der New York Times zufolge unmittelbar nach der Ermordung des Journalisten Jamal Khashoggi telefonisch über die vollbrachte Tat informiert worden. "A member of a Saudi assassination squad phoned a superior shortly after Jamal Khashoggi was murdered and told him 'tell your boss' their mission had been accomplished, The New York Times reported. Citing three people familiar with a recording of Khashoggi's killing collected by Turkish intelligence, the newspaper said while he was not mentioned by name, US officials believe 'your boss' was a reference to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. US intelligence officials view the recording as some of the strongest evidence yet linking bin Salman to the murder, it said."

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11.11.2018

"Saudis Close to Crown Prince Discussed Killing Other Enemies a Year Before Khashoggi’s Death"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/11/world/middleeast/saudi-iran-assassinations-mohammed-bin-salman.html

Recherchen der New York Times zufolge haben saudi-arabische Geheimdienstler und Verbündete von Kronprinz Mohammed bin Salman bereits vor einem Jahr über Attentate auf politische Gegner des Kronprinzen nachgedacht. "Top Saudi intelligence officials close to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman asked a small group of businessmen last year about using private companies to assassinate Iranian enemies of the kingdom, according to three people familiar with the discussions. The Saudis inquired at a time when Prince Mohammed, then the deputy crown prince and defense minister, was consolidating power and directing his advisers to escalate military and intelligence operations outside the kingdom. Their discussions, more than a year before the killing of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi, indicate that top Saudi officials have considered assassinations since the beginning of Prince Mohammed’s ascent."

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01.11.2018

"The Weaknesses in Liberal Democracy That May Be Pulling It Apart"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/01/world/americas/democracy-brazil-populism.html?emc=edit_th_181102&nl=to
daysheadlines&nlid=201795341102

Max Fisher hält den Wahlsieg von Jair Bolsonaro in Brasilien für eine Bestätigung der These, dass liberale Demokratien in Zeiten der Krise zu schwach sein könnten, um eine autoritäre Wende zu verhindern. "Research suggests it exemplifies weaknesses and tensions inherent to liberal democracy itself — and that, in times of stress, can pull it apart. When that happens, voters tend to reject that system in all but name and follow their most basic human instincts toward older styles of government: majoritarian, strong-fisted, us-versus-them rule. (...) There is a gap between how liberal democracy, which protects individual rights and rule of law, is sold and how it works. It is often portrayed as rule by the people. But, in practice, elections and public sentiment are meant to be only part of a system governed by institutions and norms that protect the common good. That gap is often where the problems begin. When institutions fall short, as they did in Brazil, voters can grow skeptical of the entire idea of accruing power to bureaucrats and elites who failed in ways that highlight the gap. So voters move to replace institutions with a style of government that feels more like democracy as they’d thought it would be: direct rule by the people."

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24.10.2018

"When Trump Phones Friends, the Chinese and the Russians Listen and Learn"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/24/us/politics/trump-phone-security.html

US-Präsident Trump benutzt offenbar nach wie vor ein ungesichertes Smartphone, das der New York Times zufolge möglicherweise regelmäßig von chinesischen und russischen Spionen abgehört wird. "(...) American intelligence reports indicate that Chinese spies are often listening — and putting to use invaluable insights into how to best work the president and affect administration policy, current and former American officials said. Mr. Trump’s aides have repeatedly warned him that his cellphone calls are not secure, and they have told him that Russian spies are routinely eavesdropping on the calls, as well. But aides say the voluble president, who has been pressured into using his secure White House landline more often these days, has still refused to give up his iPhones. White House officials say they can only hope he refrains from discussing classified information when he is on them."

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20.10.2018

"This is the front line of Saudi Arabia’s invisible war"

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/10/20/world/middleeast/saudi-arabia-invisible-war-yemen.html

Der Khashoggi-Skandal hat auch dem Krieg in Jemen neue mediale Aufmerksamkeit verschafft. Declan Walsh berichtet in seiner interaktiven Bildreportage für die New York Times über den "unsichtbaren Krieg" Saudi-Arabiens. "For Crown Prince Mohammed, the war ranks as a calamitous blunder, alongside the failed embargo he led against Qatar, the kidnapping of the Lebanese prime minister and now, as mounting evidence suggests, the officially sanctioned operation that led to the death of Mr. Khashoggi in Istanbul. But for Yemenis, this is their home. The fight for Hudaydah is shaping up to be the most destructive chapter of the war that has shattered their country. More brothers will bury brothers, it seems likely, before it is over."

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20.10.2018

"Saudis’ Image Makers: A Troll Army and a Twitter Insider"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/20/us/politics/saudi-image-campaign-twitter.html?emc=edit_th_181021&nl=to
daysheadlines&nlid=201795341021

Die New York Times erklärt in diesem Investigativbericht, welche aufwändigen Maßnahmen Saudi-Arabien unter der Führung von Kronprinz Mohammed bin Salman unternommen hat, um kritische Stimmen im Internet zu unterdrücken. "Hundreds of people work at a so-called troll farm in Riyadh to smother the voices of dissidents like Mr. Khashoggi. The vigorous push also appears to include the grooming — not previously reported — of a Saudi employee at Twitter whom Western intelligence officials suspected of spying on user accounts to help the Saudi leadership. The killing by Saudi agents of Mr. Khashoggi, a columnist for The Washington Post, has focused the world’s attention on the kingdom’s intimidation campaign against influential voices raising questions about the darker side of the crown prince. (...) This portrait of the kingdom’s image management crusade is based on interviews with seven people involved in those efforts or briefed on them; activists and experts who have studied them; and American and Saudi officials, along with messages seen by The New York Times that described the inner workings of the troll farm."

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15.10.2018

"A Genocide Incited on Facebook, With Posts From Myanmar’s Military"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/15/technology/myanmar-facebook-genocide.html

Das Militär in Myanmar hat die Massenvertreibung von Angehörigen der muslimischen Rohingya-Minderheit Paul Mozur zufolge mit Hilfe einer systematischen Facebook-Kampagne vorbereitet. "Members of the Myanmar military were the prime operatives behind a systematic campaign on Facebook that stretched back half a decade and that targeted the country’s mostly Muslim Rohingya minority group, the people said. The military exploited Facebook’s wide reach in Myanmar, where it is so broadly used that many of the country’s 18 million internet users confuse the Silicon Valley social media platform with the internet. Human rights groups blame the anti-Rohingya propaganda for inciting murders, rapes and the largest forced human migration in recent history. While Facebook took down the official accounts of senior Myanmar military leaders in August, the breadth and details of the propaganda campaign — which was hidden behind fake names and sham accounts — went undetected. The campaign, described by five people who asked for anonymity because they feared for their safety, included hundreds of military personnel who created troll accounts and news and celebrity pages on Facebook and then flooded them with incendiary comments and posts timed for peak viewership."

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09.10.2018

"Turkish Officials Say Khashoggi Was Killed on Order of Saudi Leadership"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/09/world/europe/jamal-khashoggi-turkey-saudi-arabia.html?action=click&mod
ule=Top%20Stories&pgtype=Homepage

Die New York Times berichtet über neue Details der Vermutung türkischer Ermittler, dass Saudi-Arabien den regimekritischen Journalisten Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul ermordet hat. "Top Turkish security officials have concluded that the Saudi dissident Jamal Khashoggi was assassinated in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on orders from the highest levels of the royal court, a senior official said Tuesday. The official described a quick and complex operation in which Mr. Khashoggi was killed within two hours of his arrival at the consulate by a team of Saudi agents, who dismembered his body with a bone saw they brought for the purpose. 'It is like ‘Pulp Fiction,' the official said. Saudi officials, including Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, have denied the allegations, insisting that Mr. Khashoggi left the consulate freely shortly after he arrived."

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06.10.2018

"U.S. General Considered Nuclear Response in Vietnam War, Cables Show"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/06/world/asia/vietnam-war-nuclear-weapons.html

Das Pentagon hat während des Vietnam-Kriegs einen Einsatz von Atomwaffen offenbar ernsthaft in Betracht gezogen. David E. Sanger berichtet, dass das Veto von US-Präsident Lyndon B. Johnson eine Verlegung der Waffen nach Südvietnam rechtzeitig verhindert habe. "The documents reveal a long-secret set of preparations by the commander, Gen. William C. Westmoreland, to have nuclear weapons at hand should American forces find themselves on the brink of defeat at Khe Sanh, one of the fiercest battles of the war. With the approval of the American commander in the Pacific, General Westmoreland had put together a secret operation, code-named Fracture Jaw, that included moving nuclear weapons into South Vietnam so that they could be used on short notice against North Vietnamese troops. Johnson’s national security adviser, Walt W. Rostow, alerted the president in a memorandum on White House stationery. The president rejected the plan, and ordered a turnaround, according to Tom Johnson, then a young special assistant to the president and note-taker at the meetings on the issue (...)."

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05.10.2018

"At War With Russia in East, Ukraine Has Worries in the West, Too"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/05/world/europe/ukraine-hungary-ethnic-languages.html?emc=edit_th_181006&
nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=201795341006

Andrew Higgins macht darauf aufmerksam, dass die Ukraine nicht nur im Osten, sondern auch im Westen des Landes unter ethnischen Spannungen leidet. Im Westen sei es die ungarische Minderheit, die sich mit Unterstützung des Nachbarlandes von der Regierung in Kiew distanziere. "Mr. Orban has avoided threats of force to right what he calls historic wrongs that put millions of Hungarians outside their country’s border. But the fear is that having positioned himself as the leader of a populist surge across much of Europe with his strident attacks on immigration and the European Union, Mr. Orban now risks reopening Europe’s most dangerous Pandora’s box: the grievances of ethnic groups caught outside their homelands. (...) Worried that Hungary is gnawing away at the stability of Ukraine’s western border zone, prosecutors in Transcarpathia, the region bordering Hungary, recently announced the start of a criminal investigation for high treason over the issuing of Hungarian passports to Ukrainian citizens. On Thursday, the Foreign Ministry in Kiev, the Ukrainian capital, ordered the expulsion of Hungary’s consul in Berehove."

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01.10.2018

"From Orwell to 'Little Mermaid,' Kuwait Steps Up Book Banning"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/01/world/middleeast/kuwait-ban-books.html?emc=edit_th_181001&nl=todayshea
dlines&nlid=201795341001

Im Emirat Kuwait verbiete die Regierung zunehmend mehr Bücher, berichtet die New York Times. Dies widerspreche nicht zuletzt dem Selbstbild des Landes als "Enklave der intellektuellen Freiheit im konservativen Persischen Golf", konstatiert Rod Nordland. "In August, the government acknowledged that it had banned 4,390 books since 2014, hundreds of them this year, including many works of literature that had once been considered untouchable, setting off street demonstrations and online protests. (...) Prize winners are not immune — in fact they seem to be frequent victims. 'One Hundred Years of Solitude,' by the Nobel Prize winner Gabriel García Márquez, is banned because of a scene in which a wife sees her husband naked (...). If all that seems rather Orwellian, George Orwell’s '1984' is also banned, in at least one Arabic translation, though it is allowed in another."

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28.09.2018

"In Erdogan’s Charm Offensive, Germans Find Offense"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/28/world/europe/erdogan-turkey-germany.html?emc=edit_th_180929&nl=todaysh
eadlines&nlid=201795340929

Der Staatsbesuch des türkischen Präsidenten Erdogan in Deutschland habe das Verhältnis zwischen beiden Ländern nicht wie gewünscht repariert, stellt Katrin Bennhold fest. Erdogan habe seine rhetorischen Angriffe gegen die Bundesregierung in den letzten Monaten zwar spürbar reduziert, die neue "Fassade" sei bei seinem Auftritt in Berlin aber recht schnell zusammengefallen. "Though not holding back her criticism, Ms. Merkel was visibly uncomfortable with a joint appearance that showed clumsy diplomacy not just from the Turkish president but also from a Western power that ultimately has to deal with a budding dictator on Europe’s border."

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23.09.2018

"'America First' Has Won"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/23/opinion/trump-foreign-policy-america-first.html?emc=edit_th_180924&nl=
todaysheadlines&nlid=201795340924

Der als neokonservativer Vordenker geltende Robert Kagan stellt fest, dass die drei Säulen der Ideologie des US-Präsidenten bereits vor dem politischen Aufstieg Donald Trumps in der US-Bevölkerung immer größere Zustimmung erlangt hätten. "America First" werde die US-Außenpolitik deshalb wohl auch nach dem Abtritt Trumps prägen, so seine Prognose. "President Trump may not enjoy majority support these days, but there’s good reason to believe that his 'America First' approach to the world does. (...) The old consensus about America’s role as upholder of global security has collapsed in both parties. Russia may have committed territorial aggression against Ukraine. But Republican voters follow Mr. Trump in seeking better ties, accepting Moscow’s forcible annexation of Crimea and expanding influence in the Middle East (even if some of the president’s subordinates do not). They applaud Mr. Trump for seeking a dubious deal with North Korea just as they once condemned Democratic presidents for doing the same thing. They favor a trade war with China but have not consistently favored military spending increases to deter a real war. Democrats might seem to be rallying behind the liberal order, but much of this is just opposition to Mr. Trump’s denigration of it. Are today’s rank-and-file Democrats really more committed to defending allies and deterring challengers to the liberal world order? (...) what we’re seeing today is not a spasm but a new direction in American foreign policy, or rather a return to older traditions — the kind that kept us on the sidelines while fascism and militarism almost conquered the world."

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21.09.2018

"The Death Toll for Afghan Forces Is Secret. Here’s Why."

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/21/world/asia/afghanistan-security-casualties-taliban.html?emc=edit_th_18
0922&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=201795340922

Die afghanischen Regierungstruppen haben in den Kämpfen gegen die Taliban zuletzt schwere Niederlagen erlitten. Rod Nordland berichtet, dass die Verluste nicht mehr durch neue Rekruten aufgefangen werden können und die Taliban in diesem "Abnutzungskrieg" langsam die Oberhand gewinnen "The growing losses have made recruiting fresh soldiers more important than ever, but also harder than ever. Most days at the Afghan Army’s recruitment center in Helmand, the southern province that has seen the war’s worst fighting, there are only two or three applicants, said Abdul Qudous, the center’s head. 'Sometimes we don’t see any recruits for weeks,' he said. 'People don’t want to join the army any more because the casualties are too high.' This is not just a matter of lives lost, which reverberate through families already traumatized by decades of war. It is also a sign that the stalemate between the Taliban and government forces is tipping in the insurgents’ favor. (...) In a war of attrition, the momentum is all with the Taliban, who seem to have no trouble replenishing their forces."

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19.09.2018

"North Korea’s New Nuclear Promises Fall Short of U.S. Demands"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/19/world/asia/north-south-korea-nuclear-weapons.html?emc=edit_th_180920&n
l=todaysheadlines&nlid=201795340920

Choe Sang-Hun und David E. Sanger machen dagegen darauf aufmerksam, dass das jüngste Angebot Nordkoreas nur den Abbau einer Atomanlage und nicht die von den USA geforderte Denuklearisierung umfasse. Viele Experten blieben deshalb skeptisch. "The offers Mr. Kim made on Wednesday — as well as actions he has already taken, such as a moratorium on nuclear and missile tests and the destruction of the North’s underground nuclear test site — indicated that he was willing to partly curtail his ability to produce more nuclear warheads and ICBMs. But the offers say little about his existing arsenal. Mr. Kim’s ultimate goal, analysts say, is to make the Trump administration complacent enough to ease sanctions in return for a freeze — not dismantlement — of North Korea’s nuclear weapons programs. 'No matter how hard I look, I can find no real progress in denuclearization in today’s announcements,' said Cheon Seong-whun, an analyst at the Asan Institute for Policy Studies in Seoul."

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18.09.2018

"Colombia Struck a Peace Deal With Guerrillas, but Many Return to Arms"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/18/world/americas/colombia-farc-peace.html?action=click&module=In%20Other
%20News&pgtype=Homepage&action=click&module=News&pgtype=Homepage

Viele frühere Kämpfer der FARC-Guerilla haben seit dem Abschluss des Friedensabkommens Probleme bei ihrer Integration in das zivile Leben, berichten Nicholas Casey und Federico Rios Escobar. Einige hätten erneut zu den Waffen gegriffen und sich neuen Guerilla-Gruppen angeschlossen. "These dissident guerrillas invited The New York Times to their camp, hidden among mountains north of Medellín, to tell the story of why they abandoned the peace deal. But well before the visit, the agreement was already fraying. The government, which had promised to sweep into rebel lands behind the FARC, bringing health and education services and potable water, is barely seen in much of the country. President Iván Duque of Colombia campaigned against the accords and now says he will revise them. One of the FARC peace negotiators was arrested for trafficking 10 tons of cocaine this year — while preparing to take a senate seat. And then there are groups like the one The Times visited, which present a particularly grave threat to the accords. There can be no peace in Colombia if the rebels rearm."

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09.09.2018

"C.I.A. Drone Mission, Curtailed by Obama, Is Expanded in Africa Under Trump"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/09/world/africa/cia-drones-africa-military.html

Das Drohnenprogramm der CIA in Afrika, das von US-Präsident Obama eingeschränkt wurde, ist von Amtsnachfolger Trump wieder deutlich ausgeweitet worden, berichtet die New York Times. Das bislang geheime Drehkreuz der CIA-Drohnen sei in Niger errichtet worden. "Late in his presidency, Barack Obama sought to put the military in charge of drone attacks after a backlash arose over a series of highly visible strikes, some of which killed civilians. The move was intended, in part, to bring greater transparency to attacks that the United States often refused to acknowledge its role in. But now the C.I.A. is broadening its drone operations, moving aircraft to northeastern Niger to hunt Islamist militants in southern Libya. The expansion adds to the agency’s limited covert missions in eastern Afghanistan for strikes in Pakistan, and in southern Saudi Arabia for attacks in Yemen."

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31.08.2018

"Iraq’s Forgotten Casualties: Children Orphaned in Battle With ISIS"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/31/world/middleeast/iraq-orphans-isis.html?emc=edit_th_180901&nl=todayshe
adlines&nlid=201795340901

Margaret Coker zufolge hat der Krieg gegen den "Islamischen Staat" in Irak zehntausende Kinder zu Waisen gemacht. "(...) unlike the government soldiers who fought those battles, who are honored with memorials in almost every town, these children are at risk of being forgotten casualties of the war. The Iraqi state has few resources for these victims, and the country’s ravaged communities, still scrambling to rebuild basic services like health care and electricity, are too overwhelmed to handle the orphans’ needs. (...) Social workers say (...) that 20,000 would be a conservative estimate for the total. The number includes children who have lost just one parent, who Iraqis also classify as orphans because single parents in this culture cannot simultaneously serve as breadwinner and caregiver. Most of these children have since been placed with their extended families."

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29.08.2018

"With Ships and Missiles, China Is Ready to Challenge U.S. Navy in Pacific"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/29/world/asia/china-navy-aircraft-carrier-pacific.html?emc=edit_th_180829
&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=201795340829

China hat Steven Lee Myers zufolge mittlerweile die weltweit größte Kriegsmarine. Das militärische Gleichgewicht in der Pazifik-Region habe sich damit erheblich verschoben. "To prevail in these waters, according to officials and analysts who scrutinize Chinese military developments, China does not need a military that can defeat the United States outright but merely one that can make intervention in the region too costly for Washington to contemplate. Many analysts say Beijing has already achieved that goal. (...) Last year, the Chinese Navy became the world’s largest, with more warships and submarines than the United States, and it continues to build new ships at a stunning rate. Though the American fleet remains superior qualitatively, it is spread much thinner."

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25.08.2018

"Europe Benefits by Bankrolling an Anti-Migrant Effort. Niger Pays a Price."

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/25/world/africa/niger-migration-crisis.html?emc=edit_th_180826&nl=todaysh
eadlines&nlid=201795340826

Zahlungen aus der EU haben Niger Joe Penney zufolge veranlasst, die Zahl der Migranten, die das Land als Zwischenstation auf ihrem Weg nach Europa nutzen, drastisch zu reduzieren. Dies habe jedoch der Wirtschaft geschadet und Sicherheitsbedenken hervorgerufen. "At the peak in 2015, there were 5,000 to 7,000 migrants a week traveling through Niger to Libya. The criminalization of smuggling has reduced those numbers to about 1,000 people a week now, according to I.O.M. figures. At the same time, more migrants are leaving Libya, fleeing the rampant insecurity and racist violence targeting sub-Saharan Africans there. As a result, the overall flow of people has now gone into a notable reverse: For the last two years, more African migrants have been leaving Libya to return to their homelands than entering the country from Niger, according to the I.O.M. (...) But the country’s achievement has also come with considerable costs, including on those migrants still determined to make it to Libya, who take more risks than ever before. (...) The crackdown on human smuggling has also been accompanied by economic decline and security concerns for Niger. The government’s closure of migrant routes has caused an increase in unemployment and an uptick in other criminal activity like drug smuggling and robbery, according to a Niger military intelligence document."

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25.08.2018

"Is China Undermining Efforts to Disarm North Korea? Not Yet, Analysts Say"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/25/world/asia/china-north-korea-sanctions.html?emc=edit_th_180826&nl=toda
ysheadlines&nlid=201795340826

US-Präsident Trump hat China vorgeworfen, die Verhandlungen zur Denuklearisierung Nordkoreas zu unterlaufen. Experten in China halten diese Anschuldigung Jane Perlez zufolge bisher für unbegründet. Sollte sich der Handelskrieg mit den USA weiter verschärfen, könne sich Pekings Nordkorea-Strategie allerdings tatsächlich ändern. "'There is no evidence that China is ceasing to cooperate with the United States on nuclear and missile issues,' said Cheng Xiaohe, a North Korea expert at Renmin University in Beijing. 'Trump made a wild guess from his perspective that because of the trade war, China won’t help with the nuclear issues.' Still, he said, the intensity of the trade war with the United States, along with the increasing likelihood that it will become a protracted standoff, has led China to be more passive about assisting Mr. Trump on North Korea. 'China is in a wait-and-see mode,' Mr. Cheng said. 'It depends on how the United States trade war goes.'"

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19.08.2018

"As Taliban Start Charm Offensive, Afghan President Calls for Cease-Fire"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/19/world/asia/taliban-afghanistan.html?emc=edit_th_180820&nl=todaysheadli
nes&nlid=201795340820

Die Taliban begleiten ihrer Vorstöße im Norden des Landes Rod Nordland und Fahim Abed zufolge mit einer "Charme-Offensive". "(...) the group has been actively seeking for weeks to court Afghan civilians, promising last month to halt suicide bombings in civilian areas, and announcing on Twitter and other social networks that those who surrendered would not be harmed. The moves left many in the country expressing hope that the Taliban and the government would join a cease-fire and hold peace talks. On Sunday, the government made the first move. President Ashraf Ghani of Afghanistan proposed a conditional cease-fire with the Taliban, extending a trust-building measure to the insurgents before Eid al-Adha."

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15.08.2018

"'There Are No Girls Left': Syria’s Christian Villages Hollowed Out by ISIS"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/15/world/middleeast/syria-isis-assyrian-christians.html?emc=edit_th_18081
6&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=201795340816

Christliche Gemeinden in Syrien haben unter der Herrschaft des "Islamischen Staates" besonders gelitten. Auch nach der Rückkehr in ihre befreiten Gemeinden seien die Folgen der Terrorherrschaft allgegenwärtig, berichtet Ben Hubbard. "The number of Christians across the Middle East has been declining for decades as persecution and poverty have led to widespread migration. The Islamic State, also known as ISIS, considered Christians infidels and forced them to pay special taxes, accelerating the trend in Syria and Iraq. In this area of Syria, the exodus has been swift. Some 10,000 Assyrian Christians lived in more than 30 villages here before the war began in 2011, and there were more than two dozen churches. Now, about 900 people remain and only one church holds regular services, said Shlimon Barcham, a local official with the Assyrian Church of the East."

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12.08.2018

"The Iraqi Spy Who Infiltrated ISIS"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/12/world/middleeast/iraqi-spy-isis.html?emc=edit_th_180813&nl=todaysheadl
ines&nlid=201795340813

Margaret Coker stellt in dieser Reportage einen Mitarbeiter des irakischen Geheimdienstes vor, der den "Islamischen Staat" 16 Monate lang infiltriert und in dieser Zeit 30 Autobombenanschläge und 18 Selbstmordattacken verhindert habe. "A 36-year-old former computer tech, he was, agency officials said, perhaps Iraq’s greatest spy, one of a few in the world to have infiltrated the upper reaches of the Islamic State. (...) Iraq’s counterterrorism intelligence unit, the Falcon Intelligence Cell, may be the most important organization on the front lines of the war on terrorism that almost no one has heard of. This article is based on interviews with the director of the agency, members of Captain Sudani’s unit and its commander, his friends and family members, and a review of transcripts and video of operations, and text messages to and from Captain Sudani. Little known outside of the highest levels of Iraqi and allied intelligence agencies, the Falcons have placed a handful of spies inside the ranks of the Islamic State. Its intelligence helped oust the extremists from their last urban strongholds last year and it now aids the hunt for the group’s leaders, like Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi."

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06.08.2018

"A Top Syrian Rocket Scientist Is Blown Up, and Fingers Point at Mossad"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/06/world/middleeast/syrian-rocket-scientist-mossad-assassination.html?hp&
action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region®ion=top-news&WT.nav=
top-news

Die New York Times hat nach dem Attentat auf einen syrischen Raketenwissenschaftler mit anonym bleibenden Experten gesprochen, die den israelischen Geheimdienst Mossad verantwortlich machen. "It was at least the fourth assassination mission by Israel in three years against an enemy weapons engineer on foreign soil, a senior official from a Middle Eastern intelligence agency confirmed on Monday. The following account is based on information provided by the official, whose agency was informed about the operation. He spoke only on the condition of anonymity to discuss a highly classified operation. (...) An official from Syria and Iran’s alliance, speaking on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to Western journalists, said he believed Israel had wanted to kill Mr. Asbar because of the prominent role he played in Syria’s missile program even before the current conflict broke out in 2011."

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01.08.2018

"Taliban Surge Routs ISIS in Northern Afghanistan"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/01/world/asia/afghanistan-taliban-isis.html

Die Taliban haben dem "Islamischen Staat" im Norden Afghanistans offenbar eine schwere Niederlage zugefügt. Najim Rahim und Rod Nordland berichten, dass sich über 200 IS-Kämpfer den afghanischen Regierungstruppen ergeben hätten, um den Taliban zu entgehen. "The spokesman for Afghanistan’s commando forces, Maj. Ahmad Jawid Salim, said in a post on his Facebook page that the surrenders marked the end of the Islamic State in northern Afghanistan. 'After the surrender of more than 200 Daeshis in Darzab District last night, the Daeshis have been wiped out of the north,' he said, using an alternative name for Islamic State members. (...) The Taliban and the Islamic State are bitter enemies in Afghanistan, attacking each other wherever they can. The Islamic State’s main concentration is in the south of Nangarhar Province, in eastern Afghanistan, but they had another major group in the northern province of Jowzjan, particularly in Darzab, the district that was Mr. Nemat’s stronghold."

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01.08.2018

"Kashmir’s War Gets Smaller, Dirtier and More Intimate"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/01/world/asia/kashmir-war-india-pakistan.html?emc=edit_th_180802&nl=today
sheadlines&nlid=201795340802

Der Konflikt in Kaschmir, der die beiden Atommächte Indien und Pakistan in der Vergangenheit immer wieder an den Rand eines gefährlichen Kriegs gebracht habe, sei zu einer überwiegend lokalen Angelegenheit geworden, schreibt Jeffrey Gettleman in seiner Reportage. "Kashmir’s war, a territorial dispute between India and neighboring Pakistan, has smoldered for decades. Now it is collapsing into itself. The violence is becoming smaller, more intimate and harder to escape. Years ago, Pakistan pushed thousands of militants across the border as a proxy army to wreak havoc in the Indian-controlled parts of Kashmir. Now, the resistance inside the Indian areas is overwhelmingly homegrown. The conflict today is probably driven less by geopolitics than by internal Indian politics, which have increasingly taken an anti-Muslim direction. Most of the fighters are young men like Sameer Tiger from quiet brick-walled villages like Qasbayar, who draw support from a population deeply resentful of India’s governing party and years of occupation."

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18.07.2018

"As ISIS Fighters Fill Prisons in Syria, Their Home Nations Look Away"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/18/world/middleeast/islamic-state-detainees-syria-prisons.html?emc=edit_t
h_180719&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=201795340719

Charlie Savage hat Gefängnisse der kurdischen SDF-Miliz in Syrien besucht, in denen mutmaßliche Mitglieder des "Islamischen Staates" aus fast 50 Ländern festgehalten werden. Viele Regierungen sträubten sich, die Gefangenen in ihre Heimatländer zurückzuführen. Zugleich sei klar, dass die SDF die Gefängnisse nicht dauerhaft betreiben wird. "Two Kobane prisoners captured by the S.D.F. further underscore the dilemma. The men, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey, are likely half of an ISIS cell that held and abused Western hostages, who called them 'the Beatles' for their British accents; some victims, including Americans, were murdered in gruesome propaganda videos. Britain stripped their citizenship and refused to take custody. The Trump administration is debating whether the United States should prosecute them — or take them to Guantánamo. (...) Trump administration officials have been searching for candidates to become its first new detainee since 2008. And [Senator Lindsey Graham], a proponent of holding terrorism suspects in wartime detention — for interrogations without defense lawyers, and in case someone dangerous can’t be prosecuted — sees the two detainees as an opportunity to reopen Guantánamo for new business."

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14.07.2018

"Trump Opens His Arms to Russia. His Administration Closes Its Fist."

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/14/us/politics/trump-russia-putin.html?emc=edit_th_180715&nl=todaysheadli
nes&nlid=201795340715

US-Präsident Trump stehe mit seiner konzilianten Haltung gegenüber Präsident Putin auch in der eigenen Regierung allein, stellen Mark Landler und Julie Hirschfeld Davis fest. "Whether it is Russia’s interference in the election, its annexation of Crimea or its intervention in Syria, Mr. Trump’s statements either undercut, or flatly contradict, those of his lieutenants. The disconnect is so profound that it often seems Mr. Trump is pursuing one Russia policy, set on ushering in a gauzy new era of cooperation with Mr. Putin, while the rest of his administration is pursuing another, set on countering a revanchist power that the White House has labeled one of the greatest threats to American security and prosperity."

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04.07.2018

"Wives and Children of ISIS Are Warehoused in Syria, Unwanted Back Home"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/04/world/middleeast/islamic-state-families-syria.html?emc=edit_th_180705&
nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=201795340705

Im Nordosten Syriens werden Ben Hubbard zufolge mehr als 2.000 ausländische Frauen und Kinder von getöteten IS-Kämpfern in einem kurdischen Lager festgehalten. "They were captured last year and have been held ever since in this dusty, sweltering detention camp in northeastern Syria. They are among the more than 2,000 foreign women and children being held in such camps, trapped in a legal and political limbo with no foreseeable way out. Their home countries do not want them back, fearing they could spread radical Islamist ideology. The Kurdish authorities that administer this stateless war zone do not want them either, and say it is not their job to indefinitely detain citizens of other countries. (...) The absence of any plan to deal with the detainees is part of the wider disorder in the lands liberated from the jihadists. In Iraq, many of the women who once lived among them face swift trials and death sentences on charges of supporting the Islamic State."

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