Wednesday, 19 December 2018
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Elayne Jude

As the geographic area of the US drone strike campaign expands, so too the nature and definition of its targets. Once largely associated with North Waziristan, the porous border between Afghanistan and Pakistan, drones now routinely operate in Yemen and in Yemen’s close cousin, Somalia. 2012 saw an unprecedented peak in strikes in South Yemen, and the targets are no longer just the known terrorists of classic targeted killing, but people who are judged guilty until posthumously proven innocent, says Elayne Jude, Senior Research Associate of the U K Defence Forum.

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Drone Wars November - December  2012 by Elayne Jude, Great North News Service

November 2012 saw a lull in strikes, with one strike in Yemen near the beginning of the month, and one in Pakistan near the end. The tempo increased in both regions throughout December, and the close of the year saw a cluster of killings in Yemen. Also in December, Iran TV accused Israel and Azerbaijan of jointly operating drones to spy in Iranian airspace. An Azeri government spokesman denied the allegations.

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This month saw a strike in Arakzai, Pakistan, the country's first outside North and South Waziristan since December 2010, writes Elayne Jude of Great North News Services. In Yemen, a rare strike occurred in in Saada province the north of the country, killing a local AQAP commander, and two Saudis. The area is the locus of fighting between the Houthis, a Shia splinter group, and local Salafist groups, including al Qaeda, allegedly used as proxies by the Sunni Yemeni government.

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By Elayne Jude, Great North News Services

The Samson Syndrome; is there a kamikaze psychology?
Professor David Canter

The Second Plane - September 11: 2001-2007
Martin Amis

Unfair. Reviewing these two titles together is not altogether comparing like with like.

Professor David Canter, Director of the Centre for Investigative Psychology, presents a thorough and sober discussion of the psychology of the suicide-terrorist. He cites Adorno, Orwell, many scholarly papers on criminal psychology (including seven of his own), and primary sources such as Mohammad Sidique Khan's 'suicide note' tape, and a special oversight panel hearing on "terrorism and threats to US interests in the Middle East". His study covers nations from Japan to Turkey to America to Chechnya to Spain. Inevitably, post 7/7, there is an emphasis on the British experience. Unarguably, in contemporary studies of asymmetric warfare, no country can be considered in isolation.

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In this edition : Taliban office in Qatar, Nip/Tuck by Najibullah, , Afghan Carpets nominated for an award in Germany, Out of the caves : A thousand year old Jewish treasure leaves Afghanistan, Investment up, SMEs down, Red carpet for Buzkashi boys in Hollywood. Compiled by Elayne Jude for Great North News Services

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An index of U K Defence Viewpoints SixtySecondSoundbites (video clips) on Youtube (filmed by 17dragonsphotography )

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Afghan News Roundup, 24 December 2012: Part One compiled by Elayne Jude, Great North News Service

Cruel Winter on the way

Life in winter in Afghan's internal refugee camps is a struggle to survive. Last winter, at least 42 people died of exposure or starvation in makeshift camps on Kabul's perimeters, according to the Afghan Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations. The French aid group Solidarites International estimates more than 100 children died.

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Elayne Jude, Great North News Services, reports on the return of 4 Mechanised Brigade from service in Iraq

December 1648: The English Civil War. The New Model Army marches at dawn on Parliament. Her usual guard companies find Whitehall blocked by a thousand soldiers, and are persuaded by their own commander to retire.

Colonel Pride's men station themselves in Palace Yard, Westminster Hall and the stairs leading to the old Commons chamber. Two more regiments patrol the neighbouring streets. Their aim is to purge those Members of Parliament in conflict with the Grandees, senior officers of the New Model.

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