RUSSIA WANT TO SPY ON LITERALLY EVERYONE AT THE WINTER OLYMPICS
They're making sure every phone conversation and email correspondence can be monitored
Medals for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. (Photo via)
A Guardian investigation has uncovered plans to target both athletes and spectators at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics with some of "the most invasive and systematic spying and surveillance in the history of the Games".
With newly installed telephone and internet spying capabilities, the FSB – Russia's state security organisation – will be able to intercept any telephone or data traffic and will have the ability to track the use of sensitive words or phrases written in emails, web chats or on social media.
The updates are part of a countrywide modernisation of Sorm, Russia's PRISM-like system for intercepting phone and internet communications, but particular attention has been paid to Sochi because of the large number of foreign visitors expected next year.
Ron Deibert, a professor at the University of Toronto and director of Citizen Lab (which co-operated with the Sochi research), has described the Sorm updates as "PRISM on steroids".
The state snooping is likely to target – among other topics – gay rights, using the tracking capabilities to pinpoint anyone at the games discussing gay issues or potentially organising protests.
All in all, another great piece of news for any in Russia citizen who enjoys watching Putin trample all over their human rights in his shiny black shoes.
SYRIA HAVE STARTED GETTNG RID OF THEIR CHEMICAL WEAPONS
By running them all over with heavy vehicles, which doesn't sound very safe
An alleged chemical weapon in Syria. (Photo via)
According to international monitors, the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons has begun.
A team from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons – the organisation running the destruction – said, "Today is the first day of destruction, in which heavy vehicles are going to run over and thus destroy missile warheads, aerial chemical bombs and mobile and static mixing and filling units."
Running them over with a truck seems like a pretty primitive way to destroy "more than 1,000 tonnes" of chemical agents and pre-cursor chemicals – including blister agent, sulphur mustard and sarin nerve agent – but I'm guessing from their name that this organisation probably knows what they're doing.
Under the terms of the agreement between the US and Russia, Syria's chemical weapons capability should be removed by the middle of 2014.
In other Syria news, Bashar al-Assad said he "would be delighted if envoys came from Germany" to mediate between the government and rebels in a bid to end Syria's 30-month-long civil war.
LIBYA WANT AMERICA TO EXPLAIN THEMSELVES
The US are getting involved in everyone else's business again
Libya's Prime Minister Ali Zeidan has called on Washington to explain what they were doing sending a special forces raid onto Libyan soil.
What they were doing was catching an al-Qaeda leader named Anas al-Liby – who they'd wanted for more than a decade in connection with the 1998 American embassy bombings in east Africa – but Zeidan's office said that he had asked for clarification and stressed Libya was "keen on prosecuting any Libyan citizen inside Libya".
The US haven't yet provided a public response, but have said that al-Liby is "currently lawfully detained outside of Libya".
The raid was one of two by US commandos in Africa on Saturday – the second of which was believed to have been targeting a leader of the al-Shabaab militant group in Somalia, but failed.
When asked whether Somalia had been aware of the raid, Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon Saaid said, "Our co-operation with international partners on fighting against terrorism is not a secret."
TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR FANS IGNORED POLICE WARNINGS ABOUT "OFFENSIVE" CHANTS
Spurs supporters kept on shouting "Yid army", as well as a new one: "We'll sing what we want"
White Hart Lane. (Photo via)
Spurs fans ignored a police warning not to use the word "yid" in chants at a match against West Ham, instead chanting "Yid army" and "We'll sing what we want".
The team have a strong Jewish following and have been subject to abuse from opposition crowds, so the Met police had warned both Spurs and West Ham fans who were attending the game that anyone using the term could be arrested.
However, the Tottenham Hotspur Supporters Trust have said they believe no Spurs fan "uses the term 'yid' in an offensive or insulting way", instead using it as a "badge of honour and a call to arms".
David Cameron has even muscled in, saying no one should be prosecuted unless the term is being used as an insult.
West Ham appeared to agree with the Prime Minister, promising their fans before the game that anyone using the term could be banned from attending future fixtures.
Though, after all that, nobody got arrested and the FA and Met's collective huffing and puffing didn't really seem to achieve anything at all. It's unclear what the rules are going to be at Spurs' next fixture and, again, whether they'll make any difference whatsoever.
Very Public Mistakes
SURPRISE: TOMMY ROBINSON EMBARRASSED HIMSELF AGAIN
He tried to intimidate a journalist by posting pictures of a stranger's flat on Twitter :(
(Photo by Lee Harper)
It's understandable why EDL leader Tommy Robinson doesn't like EDL News, a website and Twitter feed that's critical of the far-right hate group's ethos and various public activities, like massacre plots and the intimidation of schoolgirls.
So, presumably in an effort to strike fear into the heart of Paul Moon, the site's editor, Tommy tweeted that he knew where Moon lived.
Moon responded by inviting him round for a cup of tea.
Instead, Tommy sent a series of now-deleted picture-based tweets implying that he was on his way round; a photo of some flats captioned, "look familiar", and a picture of door captioned, "open up".
Unfortunately for Tommy, he was at the home of a man called Garry Moon (a name that is an entire 50 percent different to Paul Moon), which he revealed himself when he posted a photo of a letter addressed to Garry.
Since the EDL leader's spectacular bout of confusion, Moon has said, "I didn't understand [the tweets]. I thought he seemed to be stalking someone, but it didn't seem to have anything to do with me […] Robinson had been helped out in the past by someone who tracked down the servers we were using at the time, which were in Reading. I thought, 'He's only gone and found a slightly different name in a phone book and headed to Reading by mistake'."