Odds and Ends 

Trump: I Could Win Afghan War in a WeekBut Dont Want to Kill 10 Million People

President Donald Trump on Monday claimed he could easily win a war in Afghanistan in a week, but doesnt want to go that route because hed have to kill 10 million people. The president, speaking to reporters alongside visiting Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan, said he wants Pakistan to help extricate the U.S. from its longest war. U.S. officials have been trying to negotiate a peace deal with the Afghan Taliban. I have plans on Afghanistan that if I wanted to win that war, Afghanistan would be wiped off…

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Anti-vaxxers are taking populism to a new, deadly level | Gaby Hinsliff

A distrust of elites and expertise is now becoming a public health crisis, says Guardian columnist Gaby Hinsliff The two men rode into the village on a motorbike, eyewitnesses said, and opened fire. They left one woman dead and another injured, and a trail of fear in their wake. Both women were vaccination workers trying to repeatedly been attacked amid rumours, gather intelligence. In Nigeria, too, the extremist group Boko Haram has murdered vaccination workers, attempting to frighten families out of having their babies protected. British parents dont know how…

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Kashmir: at least eight killed as Pakistan and India resume hostilities

At least six civilians and two Pakistani troops killed as clashes along frontier continue Indian and Pakistani soldiers have targeted each others posts and villages along the volatile frontier in disputed Kashmir, killing at least six civilians and two Pakistani troops, officials said. Tensions have been running high since Indian aircraft crossed into Pakistan on Tuesday, carrying out what India called a pre-emptive strike against militants blamed in what Islamabad described as a peace gesture. Map Fighting resumed, however, overnight on Friday. Pakistans military said two of its soldiers had…

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5 things to know for October 31: Trump, Indonesia, Pakistan, ‘Whitey’ Bulger, Gen Z

(CNN) 1. President Trump A day after visiting Pittsburgh to mourn the victims of the synagogue attack, President Trump returns to campaign mode, hitting 11 cities in six days before Election Day on Tuesday. During a three-hour stay in Pittsburgh, the President and first lady somberly laid stones atop the 11 Star of David markers planted in the ground outside the Tree of Life synagogue, where 11 worshipers were gunned down. He didn’t make any public remarks, and there were some who protested his visit. Earlier in the day, the…

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Imran Khan claims victory in Pakistan elections

Former cricketer strikes unifying tone after campaign marred by violence and vote that opponents say was rigged The former international cricket star Imran Khan has declared victory in Pakistans general election, hailing what he described as the fairest vote in the countrys history, despite widespread allegations it was rigged in favour of his Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party. In a televised address to the nation from his house in Bani Gala, a wealthy suburb of Islamabad, Khan struck a unifying tone, pledging to rise above personal attacks and lift up the poor.…

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Former Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif sentenced to 10 years in jail

Corruption charges related to purchase of London flats, with verdict likely to affect election The former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for corruption in a verdict likely to influence the general election the Panama Papers leak, published by the Guardian and others in 2016. The court also sentenced Sharifs daughter and presumed political heir, Maryam Nawaz Sharif, to seven years imprisonment, fined the family 10m and ordered the seizure of the Imran Khan, the former cricketer and leader of the main opposition…

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‘Nothing but lies and deceit’: Trump launches Twitter attack on Pakistan

US president tweets saying Pakistan is providing safe haven to terrorists and America was foolish to give $33bn in aid Donald Trump has accused Pakistan of lies and deceit, saying America was foolish to have given Islamabad more than $33bn in aid. Trump began the new year by launching an attack on Islamabad in his first tweet of 2018, saying Pakistan was providing safe haven to the terrorists we hunt. The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and…

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From Bitcoin to Belize, Here Are Best and Worst Assets of 2017

It was a great year to hold bitcoin, but a bad time to have been invested in the Uzbek soum. As 2017 winds to a close, a look at the winners and losers around the globe shows that, broadly speaking, the riskiest assets performed well, with bullish sentiment on display in stocks, emerging-market sovereigns and corporate debt. Securities generally seen as the safest and least volatile bets — think Japanese government bonds — trailed behind. There was perhaps no investing idea that attracted more attention in 2017 than cryptocurrencies, from Jamie…

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Flags and parades in India and Pakistan for 70th anniversary celebrations

Tensions in India over patriotic oath for children and order for Islamic schools to film independence day ceremonies National flags are being hawked at traffic lights, the Indian parliament has been illuminated, and monkey traps have been installed around Delhi monuments as India prepares to celebrate the 70th anniversary of its independence. Above Pakistans capital, Islamabad, this weekend, air force jets left a multicoloured trail as they rehearsed for the largest air show in the countrys history on Monday, when it celebrates its own creation in 1947. Indian prime minister…

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Pakistani Taliban starts magazine for would-be female jihadists

Editorial urges women to invite like-minded sisters to secret gatherings and to learn how to use weapons and grenades The Pakistani Taliban have published the first edition of a magazine aimed at convincing women to join them and practise jihad. The inaugural front cover of Sunnat-i-Khaula which translates as The Way of Khaula and refers to a 7th-century female Muslim warrior shows a woman veiled from head to toe. The 45-page magazine attempts to depict support from a section of society traditionally despised by the militant group. As well as…

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American arrested while ‘hunting Osama bin Laden’

Pakistani police detain US man Gary Brooks Faulkner who was found with loaded pistol and sword near Afghan border An American carrying a sword and pistol who told police he was on a mission to kill Osama bin Laden has been arrested in a remote mountain forest in northern Pakistan. Police said they detained Gary Brooks Faulkner, a construction worker from California, as he attempted to cross the border with Afghanistan in Chitral district. “He told the investigating officer he was going to Afghanistan to get Osama. At first we…

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Partition, 70 years on: Salman Rushdie, Kamila Shamsie and other writers reflect

More than a million were killed and many millions more displaced by Indian partition. Authors consider its bloody legacy and the crises now facing their countries Pankaj Mishra Pankaj Mishra. Photograph: Windham-Campbell Prize To think about partition on its 70th anniversary is to think, unavoidably, about the extraordinary crisis in India today. The 50th and 60th anniversaries of one of the 20th centurys biggest calamities were leavened with the possibility that India, liberal-democratic, secular and energetically globalising, was finally achieving the greatness its famous leaders had promised. In contrast to…

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State Department plans to eliminate special envoy on Afghanistan, Pakistan

Washington (CNN)The State Department is planning to eliminate the position of Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, senior US officials confirmed to CNN Friday. But the decision to eliminate this particular post comes at a time when President Donald Trump’s administration is re-evaluating US military strategy in Afghanistan, potentially paving the way towards sending several thousand more troops to the country. That timing raises questions about where civilian leadership fits into the strategy writ large.

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Pakistan: man sentenced to death for blasphemy on Facebook

Taimoor Raza was found guilty of insulting the prophet Mohammed during an argument on social media with a counter-terrorism official A Pakistani man has been sentenced to death for committing blasphemy on Facebook, the first conviction on charges arising from social media. Judge Shabbir Ahmad Awan handed down the verdict in Bahawalpur, around 600km (372 miles) south of capital Islamabad, finding Taimoor Raza guilty of insulting the prophet Mohammed, prosecutor Shafiq Qureshi said. Raza had a Facebook argument about Islam with someone who turned out to be a counter-terrorism department…

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