Category Archives: 2GA

SO LONG, PINKOS – FOX FAREWELLS SYDMUN 2013

By James Lawler, for Fox News

It’s been a big three days for FOX News in SydVEGAS. We’ve covered everything from North Korean refugee abuses to international terror-funding financial controls, even though FOX’s financial knowledge is limited to remembering his 4-digit PIN number (and FOX can’t remember both of them).

We’ve seen the Security Council eject Human Rights (literally) and become a geopolitical ashram, the Third General Assembly turn into a Battle of the Longest Speech, and the Sydney Uni New Law building become a mosh-pit for pizza. Somalia’s been colonised, the UN’s been cyberattacked, and Ban Ki-Moon has taken up the Charles Taylor-model of leadership. FOX has tweeted loud, grilled hard and drunk far more than is sobre and sensible.

After Fair and Balanced consideration, FOX can confidently say that crypto-communists out to destroy the greatest land on earth, the good old US of A, and the Christian family values it stands for. But, some of you have revealed yourselves to be true Americans (at least in spirit), and for that FOX is glad.

Thus, as the final night is on us, this correspondent recommends two paths. For the patriots tonight, drink hard. And for the leftists, they say some find God at the bottom of the bottle – so drink hard for Jesus.
God bless, and down with the liberal agenda,FOX NEWS

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The SMH buys out the NYT

By Sonia Feng, for the Sydney Morning Herald

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There has been a surprising turn of events within the International Press Gallery. The Sydney Morning Herald can finally confirm that Fairfax Media Limited has bought out The New York Times. Many in the unsuspecting international audience and broader viewership of The New York Times can cry a bloody river, because keep your hats on, the situation is riddled with a twofold story. A mildly entertaining saga, at that, within the world of riches.

Many will remember that merely a year ago, Fox News president and blatant justice obstructer despot, Roger Ailes, notably said in response to buying out The New York Times, in pursuit of some sort of heroic crusade to “purge the socialist rag of its un-American content and transform it into a paper for proper Americans”.

Well touché Fox News. Looks like Fairfax heard half of that message to purge it of its un-American content before Gina Rinehart got on another bandwagon of media investment.

Gina ‘eat your mines out’ Rinehart, the world’s richest woman, mining tycoon and budding media mogul has decided that monopoly over other industries can be both transnational and profitable.

In a precedential move towards media domination and public trust, Gina Rinehart has bought the NYT from Fox News. Speaking about her fellow conservative business partner slash broker, Rinehart has gone on the record to announce that she intends to “purge the un-American content [of the NYT] and transform it into a paper for proper Australians”. With a change of pace to its editorial direction, the SMH hopes that The New York Times will now be completely quote unquote “Australian”.

DICTATORS CRACK UNDER PRESS SCRUTINY

By James Lawler, for Fox News

Over the course of this conference, FOX has suffered greatly for his work – take the excruciating back pain resulting from being confined to a chair outside the Security Council, or the psychological trauma of an intense hangover after SydVEGAS. These are brutal blows but, gallant as always, your correspondent will endure.

Yet, greater still, and much more righteous, is the agony inflicted by the press by its scrutiny of the delegates who would rather lurk in the darkness of an anonymous committee chair. Peddling their spin and pursuing their foul agendas, they would much rather the International Press Gallery wasn’t there to shine a harsh, revealing light on them and their designs. But that’s too bad.

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In a series of press conferences today, FOX witnessed a number of delegates from the world’s less-transparent regimes crack under IPG scrutiny. We saw 3rd General Assembly’s Chinese representative bellowing at a Sydney Morning Herald reporter in response to her questions exposing the Communist regime’s detainment of 50 Tibetan activists on Death Row. Earlier, China had called for transparency – but, evidently, only when it’s not directed at them.

Your own FOX correspondent was also subjected to smear and slander. In response to our public grilling of Russia’s unwillingness to engage with the Press, the Russian delegate accused us of “low-level discourse”, claiming further that this media organisation is “a state propaganda mouthpiece”. Newsflash, Russia: FOX News is a privately-owned media organisation, with a proud record of scrutinising all governments, including the USA’s democratic regimes. Of course, given that Russia currently ranks an appalling 148th out of 179 on the international Press Freedom Index, such hostility towards independent journalism is unsurprising. We will never forget Anna Politkovskaya.FOX is not here to make you look or feel good. Instead, we’re after the truth – and when you shout and wail and bluster, FOX knows it’s doing its job.

UPDATE: Crisis in the Second General Assembly

By Sonia Feng, for the Sydney Morning Herald

New evidence has emerged that Pakistan’s government was aware at least 9 months ago that at least one terrorist organisation operating within their borders, Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), had been using accounts in Citibank to launder money. However, they neglected to inform other nations of their suspicions, and attempted to manage this issue internally.

Lashkar-e-Taiba is one of the largest and most active jihadi organisations in South Asia, and was responsible for the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks.

It has been labelled as a terrorist organisation. There have been longstanding rumours regarding the relationships between Pakistan’s main intelligence agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), and LeT, however evidence for collaboration between the two remains unclear.

BREAKING: Crisis of the Second General Assembly

By Sonia Feng, for The Sydney Morning Herald

Confirmed reports that accounts held by the international banking group Citibank, which is headquartered in New York, have been used as a vehicle to finance terrorism. Technical information regarding how terrorist groups headquartered in Pakistan and Afghanistan managed to conduct such a sophisticated money laundering operation that it evaded the US authorities for the past five years is still sketchy. However, like all US banks, Citibank has been subject to rigorous oversight and regulatory requirements, therefore this revelation comes as a major embarrassment to the US Administration and brings into question the role of the USA in leading the international fight against the financing of terrorism.

The Issue With Combatting Terrorism’s Revenue

By Sonia Feng for the Sydney Morning Herald

The story of global financing of terrorism is one that is deeply ingrained and problematic. Pitched by the Second General Assembly of the United Nations as one of the important avenues in combatting terrorism by the international community, it in reality and praxis lies secondary in counter terrorism measures and is notoriously difficult to address.

The focus on combatting the financing of terrorism is subsidiary in the international sphere. Alternative counter terrorism processes that have largely been successful according to the Second General Assembly involve localised police and intelligence services, use of military force, the fracture and disintegration of existing terrorist organisations and the legitimisation of previous non-state actors with renewed recognised status as political agents.

According to Second General Assembly director, Jason Smith, the financing of terrorism “remains highly contentious” as the concept in its entirely hinges on a concept “not properly defined”. Such issues of uncertainty over the definition of terrorism prolong the stratagem to address it in its fullest capacity. Director Smith further questioned how one is able to fund something that is not officially and internationally defined.

The United Nations treaty and the Terrorist Financing Convention criminalises acts of financing terrorist activities. According to the briefing paper released during committee today, “these terrorist organisations require larger financial reserves to perform tasks that support their terrorist activities, and to maintain a sphere of regional influence”. These funds can be sourced from both legal and illegal activities.

Typically as history and contemporary times dictates, less well-regulated and ill-supervised financial institutions, charities and NGOs support such illegal and criminal activities, both knowingly and unknowingly, that go on to fund directly and indirectly terrorist acts. According to the briefing paper today, “the US Drug Enforcement Administration estimates up to 60% of terrorist organisations are connected to the illegal narcotics trade”. Indeed drug trafficking has provided funding for insurgency actions for those who utilise terrorist violence in various regions throughout the world. Furthermore, listed amongst the criminal activities include kidnapping and people trafficking, weapon smuggling and corruption which can generate large profits for terrorist organisations to fund their network and activities.

In our growing globally connected world, money is easily transferred state to state electronically. It surpasses state borders, for currency surpasses traditional sovereignty. Notable is the much manipulated and abused hawala system in which an informal value transfer occurs based on an honour system rather than currency movement. Terrorist organisations also launder money to conceal the unlawful nature of the aforementioned criminal activities. As such, anti-money laundering is on the United Nations agenda because it is considered a crucial component of combatting the pervasive and aggrandised revenue of terrorism.

Director Smith went on to state that as widespread terrorism funding is, it is also notable that it is inexpensive to fund. According to the briefing paper, it is estimated that the 9/11 terrorist attacks took less than $500,000 to fund. The expediency and economically viable nature of terrorism is another issue that extend its existence within the international landscape of insurrectional behaviours.

With financing terrorism, there lie many contributors. The problematic axis of transparency and the greater question of accountability is one that needs to be further explored. In committee today, moderated caucus on the topic of state sponsored terrorism brought out vitriol and denial. At its crux, state sponsored terrorism remains a touchy subject for many nation states (re: the bitch fight or “bilateral bickering” between the delegates of Pakistan and India). To which institution, (non-) actor or agency understood to be held account is one that needs additional discussion.

In conclusion, global financing of terrorism is one that is deeply ingrained and problematic that needs further investigation, discussion and accountability.