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Royal Dutch Shell is seeking to pay a $1.4 billion debt it owes to Iran that it has been prevented from settling since a European Union embargo that started July 1. 

A report from Platts news service on June 25 said that the EU embargo included a ban on oil imports and a ban on the provision of insurance for tankers shipping Iranian oil. Shell, as an Anglo-Dutch-owned company, is subject to EU jurisdiction.

 

In the heartland of the Taliban it is regularly taken for granted that Western notions of human rights are dismissed as an attempt to foist Christian values on a Muslim nation. Now, the reprehensible murder of a young bride is the latest fact emphasizing the systemic disregard for the rights of women in Afghanistan.

In the pre-dawn hours Thursday Hellfire missiles fired from a U.S. drone turned a farmhouse in rural Yemen into a smoldering heap of charred wood that served as a bier for at least eight of those “suspected militants.”

For President Obama and those pulling the triggers on the joysticks guiding the missiles toward their human targets, “suspected militant” means (presumably) “all military-age males in a strike zone.” For those of us more concerned with the Constitution and with the rule of law than the president, “suspected militant” means nothing other than a person not charged with any crime, not afforded even the most perfunctory due process protections, but summarily executed upon order of the president anyway.

North Korea, one of the most miserable places on the planet, has threatened South Korea with artillery and missile fire if South Korean citizens continue sending balloons over the border that carry gifts, as well as propaganda.

On October 11, 16 "suspected militants" were killed in a U.S. drone strike in Pakistan. As has become standard operating procedure for such attacks, the unmanned vehicles were reportedly still buzzing over the site of the attack, keeping anyone from approaching the rubble and retrieving the bodies.

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