*HUH? Extremist Imam Tests F.B.I. and the Limits of the Law:
For more than a decade, Suleiman Anwar Bengharsa has served as a Muslim cleric in Maryland, working as a prison chaplain and as an imam at mosques in Annapolis and outside Baltimore. He gave a two-week course in 2011 on Islamic teachings on marriage at the Islamic Society of Baltimore, where President Obama
made a much-publicized visit this year. But in the last two years, Imam Bengharsa’s public pronouncements have taken a dark turn. On Facebook, he has openly endorsed the Islamic State, posted gruesome videos showing ISIS fighters beheading and burning alive their enemies and praised terrorist attacks overseas. The “Islamic Jurisprudence Center” website he set up last year has condemned American mosques as un-Islamic and declared that homosexual acts should be punished by death. That is not all. An affidavit filed in federal court by the F.B.I. says that Imam Bengharsa, 59, supplied $1,300 in June 2015 to a Detroit man who used it to expand his arsenal of firearms and grenades. The man, Sebastian Gregerson, 29, a Muslim convert who sometimes calls himself Abdurrahaman Bin Mikaayl, was arrested in late July and indicted on explosives charges. Nearly a year ago, in fact, the F.B.I. said in a court filing — accidentally and temporarily made public in an online database — that agents suspected the two men were plotting terrorism. “Based on the totality of the aforementioned information and evidence, there is reason to believe that Bengharsa and Gregerson are engaged in discussions and preparations for some violent act on behalf of” the Islamic State, an agent wrote. Yet Imam Bengharsa has not been arrested or charged. It appears that the authorities do not have clear evidence that he has broken the law.
*Trump: ‘I Can Be Nastier’ Than Clinton:
vowed to ratchet up his attack against opponent Hillary Clinton
in an interview with The New York Times published late Friday, saying he planned to make Clinton’s marriage a new focal point ahead of the next debate. Conceding that he’s attempting to turn female voters away from Clinton, Trump said, “Hillary Clinton was married to the single greatest abuser of women in the history of politics.” Denouncing Bill Clinton for bringing “shame onto the presidency,” he said, “Hillary was an enabler, and she attacked the women who Bill Clinton
mistreated afterward.”“She’s nasty, but I can be nastier than she ever can be,” he said. Trump also continued to rail against Miss Universe winner Alicia Machado
, who recently spoke out about demeaning comments she said he made. Reiterating claims that Machado had made a sex tape, Trump said Clinton “made this young lady into a girl scout when she was the exact opposite.”
*LBN-INVESTIGATES: Two men who found a travel bag containing a bomb on a Manhattan street last month — and then walked off with the bag but left the bomb — were not just employees of EgyptAir but in-flight security officers for the carrier, two officials at the airline said on Friday. Surveillance footage showed two men finding the bag on West 27th Street on the evening of Sept. 17, soon after a bomb exploded on West 23rd Street, injuring 31 people and triggering terrorism fears across the region. In the video, the men were seen pulling from the travel bag a white plastic bag that contained a pressure cooker connected to wires and a mobile phone. They left the white bag on the sidewalk and walked away with the travel bag. The bomb did not explode, and investigators have said that the men may have inadvertently disabled the device. The two men, identified as Hassan Ali and Abou Bakr Radwan, had flown to New York from here, serving as unarmed security guards on the flight, the officials said.
*U.N. Appoints First Expert on LGBT Violence:
The United Nations’ Human Rights Council has appointed the organization’s first expert on LGBT violence, naming international human rights expert Vitit Muntarbhorn
of Thailand as the first person to hold the post on Friday. The move drew praise from Human Rights Watch, whose Geneva director John Fisher
said the appointment had “made history.” The new position “will bring much-needed attention to human rights violations against LGBT people in all regions of the world,” Fisher said Friday. Muntarbhorn previously served as a U.N. special investigator on North Korea and on child prostitution and child pornography.
*LBN-WHERE THE ELITE AND UNDERDOGS MEET:
***Germany’s largest bank appears in danger, sending stock markets worldwide on a wild ride. Yet the biggest source of worry is less about its finances than a vast tangle of unknowns — not least, whether Europe can muster the will to mount a rescue in the event of an emergency. In short, fears that Europe lacks the cohesion to avoid a financial crisis may be enhancing the threat of one.
*Joakim Noah Protests Dinner with Army Cadets:
NBA player Joakim Noah
, who was recently traded to the New York Knicks from the Chicago Bulls, is skipping a team dinnerwith Army cadets at West Point because he would have felt “uncomfortable” due to his opposition to war. The Knicks are holding their training camp at the U.S. Military Academy there this year. “It’s hard for me a little bit—I have a lot of respect for the kids here fighting—but it’s hard for me to understand why we go to war and why kids have to kill kids all around the world,’’ Noah said, urging against characterizing his decision as a protest. “I have mixed feeling about being here. I’m very proud of this country. I love America. I don’t understand kids killing kids around the world.’’ Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek
said “it’s [Noah’s] right” to skip the dinner as well as a speech by a retired army colonel.
*LBN-INTEL FOR INFLUENCERS:
*LBN-SEE IT:…The Carnegie Deli in Midtown Manhattan, which opened in 1937, is closing at the end of the year. “At this stage in my life, the early morning to late night days have taken a toll,” the owner, Marian Harper, said.
, who replaced a squad of high school bobby-soxers with a scantily clad chorus line that became a choreographed global brand called the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, died on Tuesday at her home in Fredericksburg, Tex. She was 73. The cause was complications of pancreatic cancer, her brother and only immediate survivor, W. W. Mitchell
, said. ***Oscar Brand
, the lanky, affable, gravelly-voiced folk singer and songwriter whose weekly on-air hootenanny was the longest-running radio show in history with a single host, died on Friday at his home in Great Neck, N.Y. He was 96. Doug Yeager
, Mr. Brand’s personal manager, said the cause was pneumonia.
*LBN-NOTICED: ***Ivana Trump wearing all red and ordering truffle shavings at $300 a pop on numerous courses at Nello in NYC with two pals. ***Corey Feldman at Capri Ristorante on Mulberry Street in NYC with two of his Corey’s Angels bandmates being greeted by co-owner Barry Mullineaux and daughters Mila and Chloe. ***Young Jeezycelebrating his birthday at Philippe before performing at Club Lust in Brooklyn. ***Sally Field hosting the Women’s Media Awards at Capitale in front of a crowd including Salma Hayekand Samantha Bee. ***Dr. Jon Perlman attending a screening of the classic film “Rebel Without A Cause” last night at the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica.
*LBN- SITE OF THE DAY:
“A huge archive of quotations, categorized by subject and author.”
“Soon silence will have passed into legend. Man has turned his back on silence. Day after day he invents machines and devices that increase noise and distract humanity from the essence of life, contemplation, meditation. Tooting, howling, screeching, booming, crashing, whistling, grinding, and trilling bolster his ego.” ——-www.TheExcelCommunity.com
*MY REVIEW: “LBN has done a brilliant job of covering this presidential election as independently as anyone. It shows no bias for Clinton or Trump and that is what makes me a proud daily reader.” —— Anna R., an LBN reader from Miami Beach, Florida.
*LBN-COMMENTARY by Neil Gross:
This week, the F.B.I. released its official tally of crime in the United States in 2015. As expected, the numbers show an uptick in violence. In the nation as a whole, violent crime rose 3.9 percent last year. Homicides were up 10.8 percent, aggravated assaults 4.6 percent, robberies 1.4 percent. Many conservatives argue that this spike in violent crime was caused by something that also picked up in recent years: protests against police brutality and racism. Their claim is that crime rose because the police found themselves hamstrung in a political environment in which their every move was scrutinized. This dynamic has come to be known, after the St. Louis suburb that was the site of protests in 2014, as the “Ferguson effect.” Is there any real evidence of a Ferguson effect, though? The answer from new social science research is — maybe. The idea of a Ferguson effect has been pushed by Heather Mac Donald, a scholar at the Manhattan Institute. Her theory goes like this: Over the last two decades, crime dropped significantly in the United States. A major reason, she argues, was that the police began employing aggressive crime-fighting tactics, from stop-and-frisk to “broken windows” policing — cracking down on public disorder offenses. Amid all the post-Ferguson concern about police behavior, these tactics fell by the wayside. Officers stayed in their cars instead of being proactive and crime bounced back.
*LBN-COMMENTARY by JORDAN A. THOMAS: As we now well know, Wells Fargo not only opened millions of unauthorized client accounts, but the bank also fostered a corporate culture so toxic that an astounding 5,300 employees have been fired for their involvement in the companywide multiyear scheme. What should bother us more is that our banking regulators appear to have been in the dark the whole time. Studies like the National Business Ethics Survey consistently show that a significant percentage of employees are aware of wrongdoing in the workplace. In the case of Wells Fargo, several employees raised concerns about these troubling practices within the bank and suffered retaliation for doing so. Unfortunately, these employees had little incentive and no way of safely alerting regulators without risking their careers. Unlike other financial police, banking regulators either have no whistle-blower programs that provide incentives and protections for individuals to break their silence about wrongdoing they witness, or these regulators have little-known programs with comically small awards.
*LBN-COMMENTARY by MATTHEW DESMOND and ANDREW V. PAPACHRISTO:
Since the year began, police officers have killed 804 people, roughly three a day. In recent weeks, police officers fatally shot Terence Crutcher in Tulsa and Alfred Olango in a San Diego suburb. Both men were black and unarmed. When the police beat or kill an unarmed black man, what impact does it have on a city and on its black community in particular? Until recently, we have been unable to answer this question with solid data, even as the national debate about this issue has grown more contentious. One well-known contribution to this debate has been Heather Mac Donald’s notion of the “Ferguson effect,” the idea that, after an episode of police violence, crime spikes in cities because ensuing protests cause the police to stop proactive tactics, emboldening the bad guys. “The most plausible explanation for the surge in lawlessness,” Ms. Mac Donald, a fellow at the Manhattan Institute, writes in her book “The War on Cops,” “is the intense agitation against American police departments that began in the summer of 2014,” following the deaths of Eric Garner, Michael Brown and Freddie Gray. To support her claim, Ms. Mac Donald cites crime trendsand interviews with several police chiefs and politicians, including Rahm Emanuel, the mayor of Chicago, who remarked last year, “We have allowed our police departments to get fetal.” If you look at crime numbers since the Clinton presidency, you see a plummeting trend — what the criminologist Franklin E. Zimring calls “the great American crime decline.” But if you focus on any single year, you see squiggles. Those squiggles are what commentators tend to focus on when they say that crime is up. It is true that violent crime has jumped in some cities that have also experienced police violence followed by public unrest. Murder and manslaughter increased by 10 percent last year, a trend that seems to be driven by some cities more than others.
*WHO READS LBN? KNX radio anchor, Frank Mottek:
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