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‘Rogue’ SAS squadron investigated over executions of unarmed Afghan civilians – paper

“Credible” evidence indicates that Special Air Service troops executed unarmed civilians during night raids in Afghanistan and doctored after-action reports to shift blame onto their Afghan partners, the Times claims, citing military and defense sources.

The series of killings allegedly took place during the final stages of Britain’s involvement in the Afghan war, the Times reported, citing a major Royal Military Police (RMP) investigation codenamed ‘Operation Northmoor’. Part of the RMP inquiry is said to have focused on a specific SAS squadron dubbed a “rogue” unit.

Sources with detailed knowledge concerning the investigation said there is “strong evidence” that unarmed Afghan civilians suspected of being Taliban militants were executed during night raids on their homes.
READ MORE: https://www.rt.com/uk/394969-sas-killings-civilians-afghanistan/?utm_sou...

Field Studies Confirm Neonicotinoids’ Harm to Bees

For years, scientists have been amassing evidence that neonicotinoid insecticides, meant to keep insect pests off agricultural crops, are also harming essential pollinators, bees. But laboratory studies are limited and real-world simulations have been lacking. Two large field studies published today (June 29) in Science largely confirm that neonicotinoids are bad for bees.

A three-country European field study led by Richard Pywell, a lead scientist at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in the U.K., reports that neonicotinoid exposure generally reduces the honey bee’s ability to survive the winter and reduces the reproductive success of wild bees. A Canadian study, led by Amro Zayed at Toronto’s York University, confirms that bees in the field are exposed to doses of neonicotinoids similar to those scientists have been using in the lab.
READ MORE: http://www.the-scientist.com/?articles.view/articleNo/49768/title/Field-...

Five Eyes and the encryption enigma

This week senior government figures from the ‘Five Eyes’ nations - US, Australia, Canada, UK and New Zealand - met in Ottawa to consider further measures on counter-terrorism cooperation. Top of the substantive agenda this week was what, if anything, to do about encrypted communications.

This topic resurfaced with the most recent UK attacks as it became clear that terrorists are embracing methods of communication now freely available (such as WhatsApp, Signal and Facebook Messaging) to frustrate interception, surveillance and pre-emptive arrests under post-9/11 anti-terror laws.
READ MORE: https://www.lowyinstitute.org/the-interpreter/five-eyes-and-encryption-e...

Australia announces plan to ban working cryptography at home and in the US, UK, New Zealand, and Canada

The Australian Attorney General and a key Australian minister have published a memo detailing the demand they plan on presenting to the next Five Eyes surveillance alliance meeting, which will be held next week in Ottawa.

The Australian officials will demand that their surveillance partners join with them in a plan to force "service providers to ensure reasonable assistance is provided to law enforcement and security agencies" when spies and police want to read messages that have been encrypted.
READ MORE: http://boingboing.net/2017/06/26/crypto-denialism.html

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