Scrolling news:

Palestine: Death toll in Gaza hits 1,088 as Israel resumes bombardment

Palestine: 32 Palestinians killed in Israeli airstrikes Tues morning; government buildings targeted

Palestine: Nineteen civilians killed as Israel continues to strike homes in Gaza

Israel: Israelis Chant: “There’s no school tomorrow, there’s no children left in Gaza! Oleh!”

Palestine: Hebron in W Bank clashes continue, 3 injured by live fire

Palestine: Palestinian killed by Israeli shell in Khan Younis

Palestine: Israel assault on Gaza, kills 15 more people, rising death toll to 1046

Palestine: Gaza casualty toll on the rise, Israeli strikes continue on day 20

Palestine: Eight Palestinians killed, dozens wounded Sunday

Eid moon sighting possiblities, Muslims in South Africa have declared Eid

Pakistan: More rain with thunder, lightening forecast in next 24 hours in Rawalpindi

Libya: US embassy evacuated after heavy violence

Palestine: List of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces between July 8 to July 27

Palestine: Two Palestinians beaten by Jewish mob in Jerusalem

Palestine: Reports show murder of 3 Israeli teenage settlers was not carried out by Hamas

Palestine: Remains of 85 Palestinians located under rubble of bombarded homes

Palestine: Ten Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in West Bank

Palestine: At least 15 kidnapped by Israeli forces from West Bank

Palestine: Palestinians pull over 140 bodies from under Gaza rubble, total killed 1000

Lebanon: Nasrallah: Israel on a path towards “suicide” in Gaza

US: NSA seeking to develop ‘quantum computer’

3rd Jan 2014


The NSA is seeking to build a quantum computer capable of breaking most encryption codes, the Washington Post has reported. Encryption is used to protect sensitive information including banking and emails. 

The Washington Post cited documents leaked by former US National Security Agency contractor  Edward Snowden in a report published Thursday detailing the latest revelations.

The newspaper said the  quantum computer currently under development could be used to break encryption codes designed to secure protect global medical, banking, business and government records stored online.

It added that the research into the machine, which it said would be exponentially faster than classical computers, was part of a $79.7 million (58.35-million-euro) research program called “Penetrating Hard Targets.”

The report said many in the scientific community had long been seeking to develop quantum computers. The machines would be capable of performing several calculations at once, rather than in a single stream.

While it is unclear how the NSA’s progress compared to that of private efforts, one expert cited by the newspaper said it was unlikely the US agency could be close to creating the machine without the knowledge of the scientific community.

“It seems improbable that the NSA could be that far ahead of the open world without anybody knowing it,” Scott Aaronson of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology said.

The Post said the NSA declined to comment on the report.

US debates legality of data collection

Snowden triggered  widespread outrage earlier this year when he leaked information on huge US surveillance programs targeting phone records and internet communications of private citizens. The United States has since charged him with espionage, with the possibility that further charges could follow. He is now living in Russia, where he has been granted a year’s asylum.

His revelations prompted widespread debate about the balance between individual privacy and the battle against terrorism in US society.

Last week a US district court  ruled that the NSA’s collection of so-called metadata on phone usage by US citizens was legal. That came days after another US judge said collecting and storing metadata – information on numbers dialed and the dates and durations of calls, but not audio from the phone calls – likely constituted a breach of the US Constitution. The issue is now likely to move to the US Supreme Court.

Meanwhile US President Barack Obama is currently reviewing recommendations on proposed changes to US surveillance programs leveled by Snowden, and is expected to announce reforms next month.

ccp/jlw (AFP, Reuters)

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Sectarianism in the Middle East and its rise in the UK, Standpoint, Sahar TV. Interview 29 May 2013 and aired on 12 June 2013

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