Leftnews.org | News and Views from the Left

by Editors — last modified 2017-12-11T18:41:35-05:00
Contributors: Faiz Ahmed, JBB, Graham H. Cox, R. Dubois, JA Cox
The best of the political left-wing from around the web.

The Upstart Saudi Prince Who’s Throwing Caution to the Winds | The New York Times

by Faiz Ahmed — last modified Nov 15, 2017 03:46 PM
"Investors, nervous about his plans, have been moving money out of the kingdom. Prince Mohammed has sought to counter the capital flight by squeezing detainees and others to surrender assets. He has turned for advice to a former Egyptian security chief who has been pilloried at home for brutality and graft. ... The former Egyptian security chief, Habib el-Adli, said by one of his advisers and a former Egyptian interior minister to be advising Prince Mohammed, earned a reputation for brutality and torture under President Hosni Mubarak. ... As many as 17 people detained in the anti-corruption campaign have required medical treatment for abuse by their captors, according to a doctor from the nearest hospital and an American official tracking the situation. ... The extrajudicial arrests have spooked investors enough, analysts say, to extinguish the prince’s plans for an public stock offering of Aramco, the Saudi state oil company, in New York or London next year. It had been a centerpiece of his overhaul. ... The crown prince’s threats against Iran and Lebanon have raised the specter of wars that the Saudi military, already bogged down in Yemen, is ill-equipped to fight. Riyadh would be forced to depend on the United States or Israel in any new conflict."

U.S. quietly let hundreds of ISIS fighters flee Raqqa | CBS

by Faiz Ahmed — last modified Nov 14, 2017 01:13 PM
"CBS News partner BBC News says 250 fighters were permitted to leave Raqqa. They got out with 3,500 family members to ISIS-controlled territory. According to the report, their convoy included nearly 50 rented trucks, 13 buses and more than 100 ISIS vehicles. Ten trucks were loaded with weapons. The BBC says the U.S. and British-led coalition knew about the deal, brokered by Syrian Democratic Forces, and monitored the exodus. The world was told only a few dozen local fighters were being let go, no foreigners and no weapons, reports BBC News' Quentin Sommerville. But the trucks were crammed full of fighters, some wearing suicide belts. All were heavily armed."

Lebanese patriarch makes historic Saudi visit amid Hariri crisis | Reuters

by Faiz Ahmed — last modified Nov 13, 2017 05:30 PM
"Top Lebanese government officials and senior sources close to Hariri say Saudi Arabia coerced him into resigning and has put him under effective house arrest since he flew there more than a week ago. During his visit, Rai plans to meet Hariri as well as King Salman and his son and heir-apparent, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, both of whom he praised in an address to Lebanese living in Riyadh."

Secret Martin Luther King document included in JFK file release | CNN

by Faiz Ahmed — last modified Nov 13, 2017 11:17 AM
"The 20-page document attempts to tie the civil rights leader to various communist influences and alleges financial improprieties at the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the civil rights organization that he led. The document also contains insinuations and assertions about King's personal life, including extramarital affairs and other sexual improprieties that would have been deeply embarrassing to King at the time. It's not clear whether the authors of the document verified any of the information."
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