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German supermarket chain busted airbrushing Greek cross from yogurt packaging

German supermarket chain, Lidl, edits Christian symbols from Greek product packaging.

Alex Christoforou

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Santorini’s beautiful blue domed Greek churches seem to offend German low cost supermarket chain Lidl.

The German discount chain has been busted airbrushing Christianity out of Greek churches.

According to The Gateway Pundit, the controversy arose when Belgian media outlet, RTL, was contacted by a Lidl customer annoyed that the brand would choose to erase, on its packaging, such an important part of the Greek landscape and culture.

Lidl responded to the negative publicity with the standard “respect for diversity” message. We wonder if Lidl would dare to airbrush crescent moons from photos of minarets.

A spokesperson for Lidl explained to RTL…

“We are a company that respects diversity and this explains the concept behind the packaging.’’

The spokesperson added that the company avoids the use of religious symbols on its packaging to remain neutral. The chain sells halal products, however, which bear Islamic symbols as part of their packaging.

Via The Gateway Pundit

The iconic image is known the world over; brilliant white stone buildings atop a cliffside village on the volcanic Greek Isle of Santorini, the bright blue domes of an orthodox church contrasting with the dark volcanic rock of this ‘’honeymoon’’ island in the Aegean Sea.

No surprise then that the emblematic image is used in the marketing of Greek tourism and products around the world, from cruise lines to Greek yogurt.

One such enterprise using the famed Santorini landscape to market its products is European supermarket giant, Lidl. The German discount chain uses the image on packaging for a range of Greek products, with one difference from reality – the crosses have been deliberately removed from the blue-domed church in Lidl’s version of the iconic image.

Known for its competitor-beating prices, the no-frills brand is a hit with bargain hunters, having become a staple of the retail landscape in recent years.

Operating 10,000 stores in Europe, Lidl has recently expanded to the United States, with supermarkets opening at multiple East Coast locations this summer. An initial 100 US stores are in the pipeline.

If the image of a tiny cross atop a church is so offensive that it would need to be erased by a marketing department, perhaps those who respect the cross – and its centuries old presence on the historical landscape – should start voting with their pocketbooks?

Contacted by The Gateway Pundit this afternoon, Lidl UK’s Press Office expressed regret for the controversy and stated that all feedback received on the matter would be taken into consideration ahead of future redesigns.

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Terry Ross
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Terry Ross

What about Christians who may be offended by “halal” marking on meat products signifying a cruel religious method of killing the animal?

christianblood
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christianblood

Christians are not offended by the name “halal” on products and they shouldn’t be. Did you ever see supermarkets rubbing the word “halal” off their products so as not to offend Christians??? The fault belongs to Germans and the rest of the politically-correct Western societies who sees the holy Cross as offensive while they are promoting all kinds of other religious symbols and other cultures and even glorifying the moral perversion they know as “LGBTQ”. The West is Evil and Anti-Christ to core!

Rastislav Veľká Morava
Member
Rastislav Veľká Morava

Čistá pravda. Sláva Bohu!

christianblood
Guest
christianblood

Thank you! Glory to Christ!

Mr. Costelol
Guest
Mr. Costelol

In 1998, Klaus Kinkel told a Serbian religious delegating that they will continue chopping up Yugoslavia, and that Christianity has no role in future Europe. Today we bear the results of these elite scumbags.

schmenz
Guest
schmenz

Somehow I think that your average Muslim could care less if a cross was depicted on the package. I see two other possibilities at play here: one, the general hatred of global corporations against Christianity and, two, pressure from another powerful lobby that has been successfully erasing the Cross from the public square for over seventy years. One of those two, or both, would seem to be the main culprits.

christianblood
Guest
christianblood

Good point! I agree!

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

Please explain this reference to “another powerful lobby” for “Pantpurlais”‘s benefit, should he be reading. I wonder if Lidl’s will also erase the kosher sign from their products, so as to avoid offending EVERYBODY. Somehow, I doubt. For the avoidance of doubt, nothing bearing the “729” bar code should be bought, unless you agree with the murder and brutalization of Palestinians by this antichrist nation of thieves and liars. And I confirm that Lidl’s are hated by their employees; my friend who is a manager at the gym I go to started off working for them, and took more money… Read more »

DarkEyes
Guest
DarkEyes

And maybe the way they are handling their employees, they might also handle their suppliers in a comparable way.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

It will all be very brutal, behind the scenes.
But I see they are expanding with 1000 new stores to the US.

ubon thai massage
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ubon thai massage

I do not believe it is the “Germans”, but some “Germans” in management that have been
given a mandate.
If these self proclaimed “enlightened ones” wanted to show their diversity, they should
discard their Mercedes, Bentleys, Rolls Royces, Porsches and BMWs, and start driving to work and play in vehicle based on patents and engieering out of the Maghreb. They should
not be climbing into such Western Manufactured Vehicles. It is disrespectful to those in African lands that deliver products of an equal or even superior quality.

RR.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

Most of those vehicles have green teeth, bad breath, and a very nasty attitude.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Religion, especially that of the Fatican, is straight out of hell. Christianity is an individual relationship betwixt man or woman and their Creator, not a man controlled, religious hierarchy, whose main aim is to make lots of money, by imposing man made doctrines and dogma, Spiritual slavery, on their congregations. It is suggested that the muslim religion was started by the Jesuits, only about 4-500 years ago. Homosexual acceptance, physically, which types the Spiritual, is portrayed through the evil increase of worship of Mary, rather than Jesus, and how the denominations have replaced Jesus Christ, God, man, with a female… Read more »

DarkEyes
Guest
DarkEyes

IMO, not a religion but a big money exercise. The Fatican Company is the richest and one of the most powerful business organizations on this planet. I do not know the situation on the other planets but it is for sure on this one.
Buying your seat in “heaven”, or “make your reservation” for a place in “heaven”.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Absolutely accurate.
Religions, all of them, are power hungry control mechanisms, using FEAR of the afterlife as a means to subjugate ignorant masses, and has been utilized thus since the beginning of time.
People who buy “seats in Heaven”, may be in for a nasty surprise once they step out of this dimension, into the next, which is a faster frequency. The concept of Heaven, for many, is a state of mind, sold to the suckers, for cash, when, in fact, it is without price, made available to all who are predestinated, according to the Bible.

DarkEyes
Guest
DarkEyes

Much appreciated. Thanks, John

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

It is encouraging to see how many citizens are finally standing up, for Truth, who are realizing that ‘RELIGION’ is the enemy’s greatest weapon against Believers.
Historically, going back to the beginning, in the Garden of Eden, it was replacing God’s Word with doctrines of the Beast, through his hybrid crop, that caused all the problem.
One little word, NOT, which deceived Eve. Gen.3:1-4
One can’t add to God’s Word, nor take from It, Eccl.3:14-18; Rev.22:18-19.
Satan, through his hybrid son, Cain, replaced God’s Word with teachings of man, the son of the beast.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Appreciate your accurate, relevant thoughts here, and what we are witnessing is an attack on our society, which originally was Christian. America was invaded by Christians fleeing persecution, martyrdom, particularly in Europe, at the hands of the Fatican, who admits to killing over 68,000,000 Christians, during the dark ages. (Facts of Our Faith) These saints, who refused to accept the pope as head of the Church, instead of Jesus Christ, were slaughtered in horrific ways, and a reading of Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, especially, will reveal that to the reader. Sadly, Christianity was quickly infiltrated by satan and his hordes,… Read more »

Le Ruscino
Guest
Le Ruscino

How many Christian Suicide Bombers have there been lately ?

Put simply there are two different levels of not being able to take a joke going on here……..offending Islam, “The Religion of Peace” is bad for your health.

ubon thai massage
Guest
ubon thai massage

Have you ever peeked under the orange robes of those Buddhist Monks???
The majority are carrying at least 10 kilos of explosives.
R.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

You’re forgetting the kosher sign, Terry.
I am realising more and more that islam is simply the uneducated scion of judaism, from whence all evil springs.
All their attitudes are the same.
Dare one say; islam was created by the jew to foster ill-will between the Gentiles.
Which he has succeeded in doing, beyond his wildest dreams.

englishvinal
Guest
englishvinal

I do SO agree~!!!! There is about as much deep difference between the Muslims & the Jews as there is between Democrats & Republicans….
The INTENT is exactly the same…. pretend to fight each other and keep everybody occupied with the clashing of swords….. and undermine the REAL enemy of both ugly factions… those heritics, infidels, unbelievers…
And it is all about the “unbelievers”/infidels… not about “christianity”…

(As old Smirky Bush said “If you-all ain’t WITH us you-all is AGAINST us”….. )

DarkEyes
Guest
DarkEyes

Not bad!. And maybe very true.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Islam is not the enemy, it is the Fatican.
The muslim mercenaries, trained armies, are just doing what they are told, behind the limelight, by those planning the One World Religion, one world government, cashless society, the Beast who sits on seven hills, professing to be God.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

Pre-dating the Vatican; of course, the eternal jew.
And post-dating it, the children of Ishmael, who spent a thousand years attacking its empire of darkness.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Correct, the children of Ishmael, who was of their father, the devil, through Cain.
Cain was of his father, the devil, not, as most believe, of Adam.
True Israel, the lineage genetic through Isaac, will number the 144,000 who make up the small remnant, all the rest are cannon fodder.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Just as a matter of interest, as we consider the end of Gentile time, how do you see the fulfillment of Mal.4:5-6?
Few ministers have been heard ministering on this Scripture, and most are confused about the difference betwixt Mal.3:1, which is fulfilled through John’s witness, of Jesus’ first coming, and the Angel who precedes His Second Coming?
It is to the Gentiles, not Israel, and how can such an important Scripture be ignored for so long?

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

You are way ahead of me on these things, John. My knowledge of scripture, especially prophetic scripture, is very poor, and I have never really got to grips with it, except in the simplest of ways. There seem to be as many interpretations of it as there are ministers elaborating upon it. But I adore Malachi 4, and in fact committed it to memory. All I get from this is that there is coming a great Judgement on the children of men, and the wheat will be separated from the chaff, and the chaff burned up with unquenchable fire. Dramatic… Read more »

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

We are all in a learning curve; there is none of us that can do more than encourage each other to observe and partake of the ever unfolding Word. As John the Baptist’s ministry preceded Christ’s First coming, Mal.3:1, the ministry of Mal.4:5-6 precedes His second coming. “Jesus the Christ, the same, yesterday, today and forever.” Heb.13:8 Mal.4:5-6 refers to the coming of a prophetic ministry, in the Spirit of Elijah, which will be used, of God, Amos3:7, to fore-run His Second coming. The Lord Jesus, identified John as fulfilling Mal.3:1, that John had the Spirit of Elijah on him.… Read more »

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Yes, behind all the global grief we find the Fatican, and, even deeper, the children of Ishmael, the Kazarian Jews, who believe they are the chosen race, who should run the world. What will be interesting is how the K.Jews and the Fatican sort out who is really boss!

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

I think you will find that behind the cassocks and the Dagon fish hats, we have a collection of circumcisees.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Yes, that is some regard as Serpent Seed, the children of the devil, as the Lord Jesus described the Pharisees and Sadducees, to which they responded they were not illegitimate, which seems a strange response, unless they already knew who their father was?

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Clever pun, bro. Tim, love it!

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

What we find is that the muslims are descendants of Abram, through his concubines, who have been striving to destroy the pure seed, the children of Isaac, ever since. Isaac was, by inheritance, the only one to receive the inheritance from Abraham. Gen. 21:12; 24:36; “But to the sons of the concubines, which Abraham had, Abraham gave them gifts and sent them away from Isaac, his son.” 25:5 There can never be peace betwixt true Israel and the other children of Abraham, which explains why there is such a mess in the Middle East; it can never be resolved in… Read more »

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

It goes deeper. The promise was not to a worldly seed, but to a spiritual. The jews made the mistake of thinking that they were the true children of Abraham, through the flesh, as you say. But the Lord Jesus Christ told them that God was “able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.” They didn’t like hearing this. This led them to understand that they were nothing special. Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, were none of them justified through their blood lineage, but through faith alone. Abraham is not spoken of as being the Father of the… Read more »

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

You display a depth of Revelation not common amongst many calling themselves Christians. Thank you for your lucid explanation of the separation betwixt the Spiritual Seed, through Isaac, and the children of the wicked one, who were fathered through Cain. Jesus told the Pharisees and Sadducees they were of their father, the devil, didn’t He? Yes, the true Church is the temple of the living God, clearly shown in Col.1:27, “Christ IN you, the hope of glory.” The Bride of Jesus Christ is the Word manifest in this day, called out for the catching away of 1Thes,4:15-16, before the Tribulation,… Read more »

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

FAITH, “We are saved through FAITH, not works, lest any man should boast.” Totally agree with you on that statement. Israel, who are under a different dispensation, are waiting still for their Messiah, but, what they get is two prophets, Moses and Elijah, who will preach Christ and Him crucified, to call out the Jewish elect. They will be martyred for their Faith, as the reality of Jesus being their Messiah, who they, for the sake of the Gentiles, murdered, and will weep, every family alone, as they realize they completely missed His first coming. Their eyes were blinded, that… Read more »

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

The problem is many-fold.
They may have a red heifer, but they do not have the Ark of the Covenant.
And even if they do have this, as Ron Wyatt implied they might; then they do not have the genealogies of the Levites, which were destroyed in 70 AD; so nobody is legally qualified to carry out the sacrifices; which as already stated, were ended with the perfect sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ at Calvary anyway.
All is confusion, as we expect when we follow the traditions of men, instead of the eternal and abiding Word of God.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Appreciate your thoughts on the Word.
Yes, what you state here is spot on, but, fortunately, as a Gentile, a member of God’s very elect, according to His Word, I, as the others, will not be here to witness what happens once the catching away takes place.
For, then, the Word goes back to Israel, as God does not deal with Israel and the Gentiles at the same time.
That is what the Gentile dispensation is all about, and, once the Word goes back to Israel, there is no Grace available for the foolish virgin.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

The theology, I feel, is quite confused on this matter. In God’s eyes, there is only one Elect, ie that of the believers. Now these can be either jew or Christian; all are one; and as such, I do not consider that a differentiation is made between them; either today, or indeed, during the OT times. “But he is a Jew that is one inwardly”. All were, and still are, judged entirely on their faith, or lack thereof. The old dispensation, which appeared to rest on blood and race and land; but never did, has been thrown aside. Paul also… Read more »

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Some suggest that it is the theology, the scholars, the religious experts, which have really missed the mark, as did the Pharisees, and are the core of the problem, where man has striven to out think God, because, as the point was made by you, previously, we are saved by FAITH, not works, lest any man should boast. Check Rom.3:1-29 to see there are two, one under Law, the other under Grace. Scripture forbids personal interpretation, doesn’t IT, 2Pet.1:20? Has it not been changing the Word of God by which we have accumulated the grief, chaos, the coming Judgement? Eccl.3:14-18;… Read more »

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

One little aside on that statement, bro. Tim.
Each of the Gentile church ages had an elect, those called out to follow the freshly unfolding Word, in each of the six church ages.
But, in this, at the end of the Laodicean age, Christ returns, opens the seven seals on His Book, and here, in Mat.24:24, is the only Scriptural reference to the VERY Elect.
The bride for this day, are typed with Enoch, do not taste death, and is caught away, to meet our Lord, in the air, whilst the foolish virgin have to die for their Faith.

John R. Nolan
Guest
John R. Nolan

Well said, Mr. Ross. The barbaric methods of animal slaughter for meat is cruel, should not allowed in any nation, particularly one which is supposed to be “CIVILIZED”, and why are we, the citizens, letting such practices invade our nations? Talk about religious persecution, it is we, the Christian nations, which are being persecuted, victimized, perverted by those who are intent on forcing us all to accept and live under Sharia Law. Is that what you want for your children? Why, curiously, do we, the white fellas, allow any invading forces, of the muslim religion, to destroy our culture, our… Read more »

Dot
Guest
Dot

If one reads the reviews submitted by employees, this company is absolutely one of those you never want to work for. Not a single positive review from employees.

Luboš Motl
Guest

Here in Czechia, where the crosses were also erased during the Greek week – and they were actually missing at products’ packages at least since Summer 2013 (and at big photographs of Santorini in the fliers since 2014) – the revelation caused a huge scandal. All major media ran several stories about it, thousands of angry comments were posted. Search for “Lidl supermarket chain desecrated churches† in Greece” for some info, links, parodies etc.

ubon thai massage
Guest
ubon thai massage

Ahoj Luboš,
My daughter’s Czechish is much more fluent than her English.
(My daughter is from my last marriage. I also met my present wife in
Czechia) (Nemecke Doma)
a Dobry Vecer,
RR.

Constantine
Guest
Constantine

What the hell is wrong with these people? Political correctness has become a pathological mental condition. And the most ridiculous thing of all in this fiasco is that very few non-Christians who would buy the product would be bothered by the natural presence of crosses on top of a church.

Almost certainly a case of projection by PC freaks.

englishvinal
Guest
englishvinal

BOYCOTT… do not purchase. VOTE with the only thing that matters to these reptilian sods.. MONEY.

Great Expectations
Guest
Great Expectations

Boycott? No problem. As I’ve said in my comment 5 minutes ago, their products are a sham and god knows what they are really selling you. I couldn’t eat a thing bought from there.

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

I always remember an amusing incident from a few years ago.
I said I shopped at Lidl; someone said they couldn’t possibly eat their products.
I had brought in a particularly good bar of chocolate they used to sell; it was dark chocolate with one side being coffee flavoured.
I left it on the desk, half eaten.
When I came back, the rest had gone.
Guess who.

DarkEyes
Guest
DarkEyes

Ah, that is not good enough. Their products is not the problem, they are according their German standards which are quite high in quality. It is the weakness of their management be oppressed by a CDU Green Red government to get away with chistian signs. It is the logical path of Merkel who is pretty busy to get rid of the nation “Germany” for SHE wants to merge the five EU Euro Zone countries (the more or less rich ones) as one nucleus european area. (NOT as a new State!), as a starter. Later on if this succeeds and she… Read more »

Great Expectations
Guest
Great Expectations

I visited a Lidl for the first and last time a few weeks ago, not to shop for myself. I am aware of the Lidl adverts on RT, that promote the very cheap prices of products. I was horrified to see that not one product I picked up disclosed where in the world it had been produced or grown. If you’re interested in the quality of what you eat and where it has come from, I wouldn’t shop there. The shop is a con. And much of their packaging is designed to look like well-known brands, which they are not.… Read more »

Tim Webb
Guest
Tim Webb

I buy their stuff all the time.
It is very good in every respect.
They have big instore bakeries now; and their croissants are particularly good.
But I despise them for erasing crosses from Greek churches.
This is really quite despicable.

Great Expectations
Guest
Great Expectations

Lidl is a heap of crap that sells rubbish and their PC rot isn’t going to affect me. I am devastated, however, to discover that John Lewis (which includes Waitrose) is to remove ‘boy’ ‘girl’ labels from children’s clothing to make them gender neutral! That boycott is going to affect me badly.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4845676/John-Lewis-ditches-boys-girls-labels-clothes.html#newcomment

DarkEyes
Guest
DarkEyes

About your excitement about the “Lidl”. IMO. a) First was the campaign against VW, Audi, Mercedes Benz and a little later against Porsche. This is obvious, isn’t it? Economical Warfare against Germany. b) We are in the middle of the Energy Warfare. This is obvious, isn’t it? Ecomical Warfare against Germany. c) Now it is time for the Evil Tongues to attack the German Food chain Lidl? Suddenly Lidl is “in a silence war” against christianity? Lidl is a billion Big Business, people. Do you think the Lidl Management is so stupid to use “taking away crosses from pictures” on… Read more »

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Rod Rosenstein resigns from his post before President Trump can fire him

Rosenstein’s comments about secretly recording the President backfire, and resignation may throw the Mueller Russiagate probe into question.

Seraphim Hanisch

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The Washington Times broke the story that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein resigned from his post. He submitted his resignation to Chief of Staff John Kelly.  At present the breaking story says the following:

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is out at the Department of Justice.

Axios reported that Mr. Rosenstein verbally resigned to White House Chief Of Staff John Kelly, but CNN said that he is expecting to be fired.

Sarah Isgur Flores, a Department of Justice spokeswoman, declined to comment on the reports.

Mr. Rosenstein’s departure immediately throws Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russian collusion probe into chaos.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the investigation, leaving Mr. Rosenstein in charge.

President Trump mulled firing the No. 2 at the Department of Justice over the weekend.

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This report came after Fox News reported that the Deputy AG was summoned to the White House. Fox reported a little more detail:

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is heading to the White House expecting to be fired, sources tell Fox News, in the wake of a report that he suggested wearing a wire against President Trump and invoking the 25th Amendment to remove him from office last year.

This is a developing story, however one major factor that comes under consideration is the fate of Robert Mueller and his Russiagate investigation, which was authorized by Rosenstein. CNBC had this to say in their piece:

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is resigning Monday, according to Axios, which cited a source familiar with the matter.

NBC News’ Pete Williams, however, reported that Rosenstein would not resign of his own accord, and that he will only depart if the White House fired him. He will refuse to resign if asked to do so, Williams added.

Rosenstein was at the White House when Williams reported this on the air. However, President Donald Trump is in New York for the United Nations General Assembly.

Bloomberg later reported that the White House accepted Rosenstein’s resignation, citing a person familiar with the matter.

Rosenstein’s expected resignation will immediately raise questions about the fate of the ongoing investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is probing Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, and possible obstruction of justice by President Donald Trump.

Rosenstein’s job security was called into question after The New York Times reported last week that the No. 2 DOJ official had discussed invoking the 25th amendment to remove Trump, and had also talked about surreptitiously recording the president.

Rosenstein oversees the special counsel investigation, and has appointed Mueller to run the Russia probe last year, after Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the case.

The special counsel’s office declined to comment on the report.

The White House did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment on Axios’ report. The Justice Department did not immediately respond to CNBC’s inquiry.

Trump has repeatedly blasted Mueller’s inquiry, which also is focused on possible collusion with Russia by members of the Trump campaign.

He has called the investigation a “witch hunt,” and has repeatedly vented frustration about Sessions’ recusal, which directly led to Mueller’s appointment by Rosenstein.

Rosenstein’s expected departure comes on the heels of a guilty plea by Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort to conspiracy charges related to his consulting work in Ukraine, which predates his role on the campaign.

As part of the investigation, Mueller’s team has been locked in an ongoing back-and-forth with Trump’s legal team over an in-person interview with the president.

Trump’s lawyers, including former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, have signaled that Trump is unwilling to sit for an interview, calling it a “perjury trap” and setting up a potential challenge for Mueller to subpoena the president.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

 

 

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European Council crushes Theresa May’s soft Brexit dream (Video)

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 116.

Alex Christoforou

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UK Prime Minister Theresa May hoped that the European Council was ready to see things her way, in terms of proceeding with a soft Brexit, which was essentially no Brexit at all…at least not the hard Brexit that was voted on in a democratic referendum approximately two years ago.

Much to May’s surprise, European Council President Donald Tusk delivered a death blow verdict for May’s Brexit, noting that EU leaders are in full agreement that Chequers plan for Brexit “will not work” because “it risks undermining the single market.”

Without a miracle compromise springing up come during the October summit, the UK will drift into the March 29, 2019 deadline without a deal and out of the European Union…which was initially what was voted for way back in 2016, leaving everyone asking, what the hell was May doing wasting Britain’s time and resources for two years, so as to return back to the hard Brexit terms she was charged with carrying forward after the 2016 referendum?

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss what was a disastrous EU summit in Salzburg for UK PM Theresa May, in what looks to be the final nail in May’s tenure as UK Prime Minister, as a hard Brexit now seems all but certain.

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Via Zerohedge

Tusk was speaking at the end of an EU summit in Salzburg, where the leaders of the 27 remaining states in the bloc were discussing Brexit. He said that while there were “positive elements” in May’s Chequers plan, a deal that puts the single market at risk cannot be accepted.

“Everybody shared the view that while there are positive elements in the Chequers proposal, the suggested framework for economic co-operation will not work, not least because it is undermining the single market,” Tusk said. He also said that he could not “exclude” the possibility that the UK could exit the EU in March with no deal.

May has been urging her European counterparts to accept her controversial Chequers plan which has split both the Conservative party and the broader UK population after it was thrashed out back in July. However, despite the painfully-slow negotiation process, which appears to have made little headway with just a few months left, the UK is set to leave the EU on March 29 2019 – with or without an exit deal.

The main sticking point that has emerged, and left May and the EU at loggerheads, has been how to avoid new checks on the Irish border. May has claimed that her proposals were the “only serious, credible” way to avoid a hard border in Northern Ireland. She said during a press conference after the Salzburg meeting that she would not accept the EU’s “backstop” plan to avoid a Northern Ireland hard border. She said the UK would shortly be bringing forward its own proposals.

May also said that there was “a lot of hard work to be done,” adding that the UK was also preparing for the eventuality of having to leave the EU without a deal. Tusk, meanwhile, said that the upcoming October summit would be the “moment of truth” for reaching a deal, and that “if the conditions are there” another summit would be held in November to “formalize” it.

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Russia makes HUGE strides in drone technology

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The US and Israel are universally recognized leaders in the development and use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones. Thousands of American and Israeli UAVs are operating across the world daily.

The US military has recently successfully tested an air-to-air missile to turn its MQ-9 Reaper drone into an effective long-endurance, high-altitude surveillance unmanned spy aircraft capable of air-to-surface as well as air-to-air missions. This is a major breakthrough. It’s not a secret that Russia has been lagging behind in UAV development. Now its seems to be going to change with tangible progress made to narrow the gap.

Very few nations boast drones capable of high-altitude long endurance (HALE) missions. Russia is to enter the club of the chosen. In late 2017, the Russian Defense Ministry awarded a HALE UAV contract to the Kazan-based Simonov design bureau.

This month, Russian Zvezda military news TV channel showed a video (below) of Altair (Altius) heavy drone prototype aircraft number “03”, going through its first flight test.

Propelled by two RED A03/V12 500hp high fuel efficiency diesel engines, each producing a capacity of 500 hp on takeoff, the 5-ton heavy vehicle with a wingspan of 28.5 meters boasts a maximum altitude of 12km and a range of 10,000km at a cruising speed of 150-250km/h.

Wingspan: about 30 meters. Maximum speed: up to 950 km/h. Flight endurance: 48 hours. Payload: two tons, which allows the creation of a strike version. The vehicle is able to autonomously take off and land or be guided by an operator from the ground.

The UAV can carry the usual range of optical and thermal sensors as well as synthetic-aperture ground-surveillance radar with the resolution of .1 meter at the range of 35km and 1 meter at the range of 125km. The communications equipment allows real-time data exchange.

Russia’s UAV program currently underway includes the development of a range of large, small, and mid-sized drones. The Orion-E medium altitude long endurance (MALE) UAV was unveiled at the MAKS 2017 air show. Its developer, Kronstadt Technologies, claims it could be modified for strike missions. The one-ton drone is going through testing now. The Orion-E is capable of automatic takeoff and landing.

It can fly continuously for 24 hours, carrying a surveillance payload of up to 200 kg to include a forward looking infra-red (FLIR) turret, synthetic aperture radar and high resolution cameras. The drone can reach a maximum altitude of 7,500 m. Its range is 250 km.

The Sukhoi design bureau is currently developing the Okhotnik (Hunter) strike drone with a range of about 3,500km. The drone made its maiden flight this year. In its current capacity, it has an anti-radar coating, and will store missiles and precision-guided bombs internally to avoid radar detection.

The Kazan-based Eniks Design Bureau is working on the small T-16 weaponized aerial vehicle able to carry 6 kg of payload.

The new Russian Korsar (Corsair) tactical surveillance unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) will be upgraded to receive an electronic warfare system. Its operational range will be increased from 150km to 250km. The drone was revealed at Victory Day military parade along with the Korsar unmanned combat helicopter version.

The rotary wing drone lacks the speed and altitude of the fixed wing variant, but has a great advantage of being able to operate without landing strips and can be sea-based. Both drones can carry guided and unguided munitions. The fixed-wing version can be armed with Ataka 9M120 missiles.

The first Russian helicopter-type unmanned aerial vehicle powered by hydrogen fuel cells was presented at the Army-2018 international forum. With the horizontal cruising speed of the drone up to 60 kph, the unmanned chopper can stay in the air at least 2.5 hours to conduct reconnaissance operations. Its payload is up to 5 kg.

Last November, the Kalashnikov Concern reported that it would start production of heavy unmanned aerial vehicles capable of carrying up to several tons of cargo and operating for several days at a time without needing to recharge.

All in all, the Russian military operate 1,900 drones on a daily basis. The multi-purpose Orlan-10 with a range of 600km has become a working horse that no military operation, including combat actions in Syria, can be conducted without. Maj. Gen. Alexander Novikov,
the head of the Russian General Staff’s Office for UAV Development, Russian drones performed over 23,000 flights, lasting 140,000 hours in total.

Russia’s State Armament Program for 2018-2027 puts the creation of armed UAVs at the top of priorities’ list. Looks like the effort begins to pay off. Russia is well on the way to become second to none in UAV capability.

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Via Strategic Culture

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