U.S. Official: Iran Just Fired a Ballistic Missile

On Wednesday, ratcheting up tension between the United States and Iran, Iran successfully test-fired a medium-range ballistic missile that flew 600 miles.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News, “They continue to engage in malign activity; they continue to build out their missile program; they continue to work on their nuclear systems, and yet they want to tell the world that no, they’re just defensive and they’re just being a normal nation and we all see differently.”

A senior administration commented, “We are aware of reports of a projectile launched from Iran, and have no further comment at this time.”

The Shahab-3 missile flew from southern Iran to a desert near Iran’s capital, Tehran; the nuclear deal which President Trump walked away from did not deal with Iran’s conventional missile program.

Tensions between Iran and the West have been rising steadily for weeks; in mid-June, two tankers, the Kokuka Courageous and the Norwegian-owned Front Altair, were attacked in the Gulf of Oman, and according to Commander Sean Kido, mines used in the attack bore “a striking resemblance” to those used by Iran. He said, “The limpet mine that was used in the attack is distinguishable and also strikingly bearing a resemblance to Iranian mines that have already been publicly displayed in Iranian military parades.” The U.S. Navy displayed pieces of debris and a magnet which they believed came from Iran’s Revolutionary Guard. (Read more from “U.S. Official: Iran Just Fired a Ballistic Missile” HERE)

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Historian Unearths Evidence That Turkey Directed Armenian Genocide

Between 1914 and 1923, during and after World War I, hundreds of thousands of Armenians living in Turkey were systematically rounded up and murdered. Thousands more were forced to flee their homes. Some estimates put the death toll at more than 1.5 million.

Now, researchers say newly discovered documents suggest the Armenian genocide was both sanctioned and assisted by leaders of the Ottoman Empire in Istanbul. . .

His discovery suggests the genocide was indeed carried out on periphery, not by rogue agents and bandits, but by provincial governors. These governors were in communication with and assisted by leaders in Istanbul. . .

The evidence, a series of telegrams transcribed, decoded and signed by Turkish officials, was discovered among a slate of new documents released into the Ottoman archive, a collection of historical documents in Istanbul, organized by the government and made available to researchers.

The newly discovered letters feature the first unambiguous use of the terms “extermination” and “annihilation” by Ottoman officials, both among the provinces and in Istanbul. Analysis of the signatures confirmed several of the transcribed telegrams were authored by Bahaettin Şakir, head of the para-military Special Organization and one of the architects of the Armenian Genocide. (Read more from “Historian Unearths Evidence That Turkey Directed Armenian Genocide” HERE)

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Vatican Cops Bust Drug-Fueled Gay Orgy at Home of Cardinal’s Aide

Vatican police raided a drug-fueled gay-sex party at an apartment belonging to an aide of one of Pope Francis’ key advisers, according to a new report.

The Holy Father is “enraged,” since the home, inhabited by Francesco Cardinal Coccopalmerio’s secretary, belongs to the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith — the arm charged with tackling clerical sex abuse, the Italian paper Il Fatto Quotidiano reported.

Cops raided the apartment in late June after neighbors voiced concern about multiple people acting strangely while streaming in and out of the residence, the newspaper reported Wednesday.

Once police were inside the apartment, they said they found multiple men engaged in rampant drug use and homosexual activity. . .

Coccopalmerio had recommended the secretary for a promotion to bishop — but his prospects aren’t looking good following this incident and two previous alleged drug overdoses, according to an International Business Times report. (Read more from “Vatican Cops Bust Drug-Fueled Gay Orgy at Home of Cardinal’s Aide” HERE)

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WATCH: Venezuelan Children Fight Over Bananas Just to Avoid Starvation Thanks to Socialism

“The children of #Venezuela no longer dream of piñatas and sweets, their reality is to fight among themselves and against adults for leftovers of bananas in order to survive,” Cristian Crespo tweeted today. Accompanying his message was a horrendous video out of the country torn apart by the devastating effects of socialism.

Professor Steve Hanke, an economics professor at Johns Hopkins as well as a senior fellow at Cato, pointedly commented, “A tragic scene out of the #socialist, horror movie. It’s real. It’s a documentary from the socialist paradise of #Venezuela.”

(Read more from “Venezuelan Children Fight Over Bananas Just to Avoid Starvation Thanks to Socialism” HERE)

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North Korea Fires Missiles, Fresh Nuclear Talks in Doubt

North Korea fired two short-range missiles early on Thursday from its east coast, South Korea’s military said, the first missile test since leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump agreed to revive stalled denuclearization talks.

The missiles, launched from near the coastal city of Wonsan, flew about 430 km (267 miles) out over the sea, reaching an altitude of 50 km (30 miles), before splashing down, an official at South Korea’s defense ministry told Reuters.

The firing of ballistic missiles will cast new doubt on efforts to restart denuclearization talks after Trump and Kim met at the demilitarized zone (DMZ) between the two Koreas at the end of June. . .

After Trump and Kim met lat month, the United States and North Korea vowed to soon hold a new round of working-level talks, but Pyongyang has since sharply criticized upcoming joint military drills by U.S. and South Korean troops.

South Korea’s ambassador to the United States, Cho Yoon-je, told reporters that Washington had offered to discuss the time and location of such talks but there had been no response from Pyongyang.

(Read more from “North Korea Fires Missiles, Fresh Nuclear Talks in Doubt” HERE)

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Gun-Controlled Mexico: 3,080 Homicides in June Alone

Mexico has only one gun store and stringent gun controls, neither of which prevented the murders of 3,080 in that country in June alone.

On July 5, 2019, Breitbart News reported that heavily gun-controlled Mexico saw, on average, 94 homicides a day for the first six months of 2019, many of which are firearm-related. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the U.S. witnessed roughly 53 homicides a day in 2017, approximately 40 of which were firearm-related. . .

The Associated Press reports there were “3,080 killings in June” in Mexico and a total of “17,608 killings” in gun-controlled Mexico during the first six months of 2019.

There is only one gun store in Mexico, and it is run by the government. CBS News reports that the government store the only place a firearm can be “legally” purchased. All firearms must be registered and the type and number of guns one can own are highly regulated.

The University of Sydney’s GunPolicy.org lists Mexico’s gun control as “restrictive,” noting that the right to possess firearms is only “conditionally guaranteed” by the country’s constitution. (Read more from “Gun-Controlled Mexico: 3,080 Homicides in June Alone” HERE)

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Illegal Immigration on the Rise from Venezuela

Today, House Democrats are voting on H.R. 549 – the Venezuela TPS Act of 2019. This bill will extend Temporary Protected Status for Venezuelan nationals and shield them from deportation. It could not come at a worse time and is akin to dousing a growing fire with lighter fluid.

Illegal immigration has surged over the past year, primarily from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador. But in recent months, there has been a rise in migration from many other countries both in our hemisphere and from the Eastern Hemisphere. One of the latest trends that should sound alarms throughout the Trump administration is the weekly increase in numbers from Venezuela.

While the DHS does not provide monthly data of border apprehensions for countries other than Mexico and Central America’s northern triangle, CR has obtained weekly data from Texas’ Department of Public Safety used internally by Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The numbers show that apprehensions just in Texas of Venezuelan nationals have increased from a trickle every week for the past few months, culminating with a spike of almost double the previous week in last week’s report.

According to the data, which was given to CR by a Border Patrol agent who must remain anonymous because he is not authorized to speak to the press, 189 Venezuelans were caught at the Texas border July 10-July 17, compared to 99 the previous week. The week before that, 47 Venezuelans were apprehended. That is roughly the level of weekly Venezuelan apprehensions throughout June. In May, it hovered around 20, and before that it was 0-5 per week.

This is a very disturbing trend, according to Joseph Humire, expert on Venezuelan affairs.

“Since the mass exodus from Venezuela began in 2014, there are more than 4 million Venezuelans living abroad,” warned Humire, who heads the Center for a Secure Free Society. “A recent Organization of American States (OAS) report warned that by the end of 2020 the number of Venezuelan refugees/migrants can more than double and as many as 8.2 million Venezuelans could have left the country. This would make Venezuela the largest refugee crisis in the world, overtaking Syria.”

Humire notes that while “until now, most of those that fled Venezuela by foot traveled through South America, going as far south as Argentina, it appears that now they are heading north.”

In other words, if this isn’t stopped in its infancy, we could be facing something much larger than even the Central American migration over the next few years. “If the current projections stay the same, and the migrants from Venezuela moving from South to Central America connect with the tens of thousands of undocumented migrants from Central America to the U.S. southwest border, we could see our illegal immigration problem on our border literally triple overnight,” warns Humire.

Humire further warns that Venezuelan migration poses an entirely new national security threat, given that its dictator, Nicolas Maduro, is a client of Iran and Iran is locked in a tense conflict with America.

“While this is taking place, Iran is quietly but overtly increasing its presence in Latin America. As tensions rise in the Middle East over Iran’s aggression in the Strait of Hormuz, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif is in Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Bolivia these past few days to ensure Latin America remains an option in case conflict erupts. … You can be sure that ‘mass migration’ is a phenomenon that Iran is examining to weaponize against the United States.”

Venezuela is Hezbollah’s main base of operations in South America. Hezbollah has direct ties to the country’s former vice president, who is of Syrian descent and still a top minister, and there are hundreds of thousands of Lebanese and Syrian expatriates living there who are native Spanish speakers.

On top of the national security concerns, Venezuela also poses a public health risk. While there are serious concerns over people carrying contagious diseases from many of the countries from which we are seeing migrants, Venezuela’s entire health infrastructure has broken down. The CDC warns against all non-essential travel to Venezuela over concerns of measles, diphtheria, and malaria. It also warns about the re-emergence of polio as a result of “a conflux of plummeting vaccination coverages and ongoing outbreaks of other vaccine-preventable diseases,” together with “the weakening of surveillance programs, forced migrations, and a prolonged political, economic, and food crisis without foreseeable resolution.”

There are also serious concerns about Ebola and measles from some African countries. According to Border Patrol, over 1,100 Africans from 19 countries have been apprehended since May 30. Last week, the World Health Organization declared the Congo Ebola outbreak a global health emergency after more than 2,500 people have been diagnosed with the deadly virus.

Why our government hasn’t officially declared a shutoff and travel ban to and from these countries remains a mystery. Our existing laws should make Venezuelan nationals inadmissible until they can document vaccination history. Asylum does not trump the medically inadmissible statutes of 8 U.S.C. 1182.

When pondering the latest news of migrants ticking up from a failed state with health concerns that happens to be heavily influenced by Iran and Hezbollah, consider the ominous warning El Paso’s DEA chief delivered in an interview with CR in May. “Let’s just put it this way, the cartels are an international organization. It’s a real threat, it’s a prevalent threat, and they do have their associations with groups like Hezbollah, with Afghans, and with radical terrorist organizations,” warned Kyle Williamson, special agent in charge of El Paso’s DEA office, who also served in the DEA’s offices in the Middle East, overseeing narco-terrorism enforcement. “What that does is effectively move those borders right up to the United States. Those cartels link the borders. Just like they use their resources, their technology, their criminal enterprise to conduct criminal activities, they can use those resources to assist terrorists as well.”

Last year, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani passive-aggressively warned that the West will be flooded with “a deluge of drugs, asylum seekers, bombs and terrorism.” There’s no better way for Iran to carry out these threats than through its Venezuelan proxy, especially when it can add biological warfare, through health risks, to its asymmetrical warfare. Nor have the Iranians ever been more desperate to pull that trigger against us. (For more from the author of “Illegal Immigration on the Rise from Venezuela” please click HERE)

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South Korea Fires Warning Shots as Russian, Chinese Military Planes Enter Airspace

South Korea has reportedly fired warning shots after Russian military planes violated the nation’s airspace on Tuesday, according to South Korea’s Defense Ministry.

The Associated Press reported that, according to South Korea’s Defense Ministry, “multiple Russian military planes violated the South Korean airspace off its east coast” and “Chinese military planes also intruded into South Korea’s aerial identification zone.” . . .

The provocation comes after “two Russian military aircraft violated South Korea’s air defense identification zone [last Thursday], prompting the Air Force to scramble fighter jets in response,” the Korea Herald reported.

The incident comes as North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un “inspected a large newly built submarine, state news agency KCNA reported on Tuesday, potentially signalling continued development of a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) program,” Reuters reported. . .

“We can clearly see that it is a massive submarine — much larger than the existing one that’s been well known since 2014,” said Ankit Panda, a senior fellow at the U.S.-based Federation of American Scientists. “What I find significant about the political messaging here is that this is the first time since a February 2018 military parade that he has inspected a military system clearly designed to carry and deliver nuclear weapons. I take that as an ominous signal that we should be taking Kim Jong Un’s end-of-year deadline for the implementation of a change in U.S. policy with the utmost seriousness.” (Read more from “South Korea Fires Warning Shots as Russian, Chinese Military Planes Enter Airspace” HERE)

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Mexican Officials Bust ‘Massive’ Migrant Smuggling Ring

Authorities in Mexico announced Monday the discovery of an “industrial-scale migrant smuggling ring” that transported hundreds of migrants in disguised freight trucks.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador described how one tractor-trailer truck was disguised with the logo of a major grocery store chain. But instead of groceries, the truck was carrying about 150 migrants, the Associated Press reports.

’The (grocery) company has filed a complaint, because it was fake, it was camouflage to transport migrants,” Lopez Obrador said.

Last month, Mexico found five trucks carrying 925 migrants disguised with the logos of major companies to avoid detection. The migrants were reportedly transported in inhumane conditions, as air conditioning units installed on the tractor-trailers were not used to provide ventilation to the people being smuggled.

“The biggest concern is that there is going to be a tragedy, that is what we don’t want,” said Lopez Obrador.

This discovery reinforces the point that’s often left out when pundits discuss the border crisis: There are vast criminal networks working to illegally smuggle human beings from Central America to the United States. As long as the border remains unsecured, these criminal networks have an incentive to continue their illegal activity. The worst harm is done to the migrants themselves, who are subjected to dangerous conditions or worse.

While the Left continues to accuse the Trump administration of operating concentration camps, remember that the real human rights abusers are the criminals abusing these people and trafficking them to the United States. And the way to stop them is to enforce United States law. (For more from the author of “Mexican Officials Bust ‘Massive’ Migrant Smuggling Ring” please click HERE)

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Iran Seizes Multiple Oil Tankers Near Persian Gulf

Iran — the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism — has captured a British-flagged and a Liberian-flagged oil tanker on Friday in the Strait of Hormuz, according to U.S. officials.

“Iran has also seized a second tanker, the Liberian-flagged MV Mesdar, according to a US official,” CNN reported. “Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps announced earlier that its navy has captured a British-flagged tanker ‘Stena Impero’ in the Strait of Hormuz.”

Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is designated by the U.S. State Department as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) and has “engaged in terrorist activity since its inception 40 years ago.”

President Donald Trump responded to the developments on the White House lawn before departing the White House.

“So, we’re going to be speaking with the U.K.,” Trump said. “And this only goes to show what I am saying about Iran. Trouble. Nothing but trouble. And remember this, the ridiculous agreement made by President Obama expires in a very short period of time, it was a short term agreement.”

(Read more from “Iran Seizes Multiple Oil Tankers Near Persian Gulf” HERE)

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