Permalink If Kiev started using army, it's serious crime against its people - Putin

If Kiev has actually started using its army in the eastern Ukrainian city of Slavyansk, then that is a serious crime against its own people, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday, Voice of Russia correspondent Svetlana Kalmykova reports. "If today's regime in Kiev has actually begun using its army against civilians within the country, then that, without a doubt, is a serious crime against its people," Putin said during a MediaForum in St. Petersburg. The Ukrainian authorities should start dialogue within the country and not legalizing radical organizations to settle the conflict in the country, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday. "We participated in the meeting in Geneva and signed definite agreements which include that both sides need to disarm their people, vacate administrative buildings, and so on. What's happening: no 'Right Sector,' or any other radical groups have been disarmed, no one in Kiev has vacated anything. It's just the opposite, these groups are beginning to be legalized. And who's doing the legalization? You shouldn't go on this path, you need to take the path of dialogue among all of the country's residents wherever they are living," Putin said during a MediaForum in St. Petersburg.

Stephen Lendman: Kiev Declares War In mid-April, CIA director John Brennan went to Kiev. He did so quietly. He held secret talks. He met with Obama's new friends. He came to plot war strategy. He wants Eastern Ukrainian freedom fighters eliminated. He wants them slaughtered in cold blood. He wants challengers to Washington's imperium crushed. After his visit, coup-appointed president Okeksandr Turchynov announced a northern Donetsk region "anti-terrorist operation." To "protect the citizens of Ukraine," he claimed. To be conducted "stage-by-stage," he added. So-called "terrorists" are committe freedom fighters. They're Ukraine's best and bravest. They're putting their bodies on the line courageously. They're doing it for fundamental rights everyone deserves.

Permalink [The CIA's] Jihadists Now Control Secretive U.S. Base in Libya

A camp on the Libyan coastline meant to train terror-hunters has instead become a haven for terrorists and al Qaeda. A key jihadist leader and longtime member of al Qaeda has taken control of a secretive training facility set up by U.S. special operations forces on the Libyan coastline to help hunt down Islamic militants, according to local media reports, Jihadist web forums, and U.S. officials. In the summer of 2012, American Green Berets began refurbishing a Libyan military base 27 kilometers west of Tripoli in order to hone the skills of Libya’s first Western-trained special operations counter-terrorism fighters. Less than two years later, that training camp is now being used by groups with direct links to al Qaeda to foment chaos in post-Qaddafi Libya. Last week, the Libyan press reported that the camp (named “27” for the kilometer marker on the road between Tripoli and Tunis) was now under the command of Ibrahim Ali Abu Bakr Tantoush, a veteran associate of Osama bin Laden who was first designated as part of al Qaeda’s support network in 2002 by the United States and the United Nations. The report said he was heading a group of Salifist fighters from the former Libyan base. In other words, Tantoush is now the chief of a training camp the U.S. and Libyan governments had hoped would train Libyan special operations forces to catch militants like Tantoush.


Permalink US unleashes three days of drone strikes on Yemen, 55 68 killed

Dozens are reportedly dead in Yemen, including at least three civilians, as the result of a series of drone strikes that started in the southern part of the country on Saturday and is alleged to still be occurring two days later. By noontime in Washington, DC on Monday, the Associated Press reported that 55 Al-Qaeda militants were among those that had been killed in an hours-long series of strikes that targeted a training camp operated by the group, according to Yemen's interior ministry. The United States is alleged to have carried out the strikes using unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, but does not legally have to acknowledge any operations conducted by its Central Intelligence Agency and has not commented.

Jason Ditz: At Least 68 Killed as US Drone Strikes on Yemen Enter Third Day
Wayne Madsen: While All Eyes Were on Ukraine, the West U.S. Hatched a Plan for Yemen
Common Dreams: US Drones Continue 'Massive' Operations in Third Day of Attacks


Permalink US Drones Continue 'Massive' Operations in Third Day of Attacks

A suspected U.S. drone strike hit Yemen on Monday morning, the third such attack in as many days, killing people described as "militants" as part of "massive and unprecedented" operations targeting "al Qaeda" in the Arabian Peninsula. According to reporting by the Associated Press, the most recent strike "targeted the mountainous area of Mahfad between the provinces of Abyan and Shabwa," located in the southern part of the impoverished country. Neither the number of casualties nor who they are is clear at this point. An unnamed, "high-level Yemeni government official" told CNN that a "massive and unprecedented" scale of operations targeting AQAP was underway.


Permalink Ukraine: Poland trained putchists two months in advance

Thierry Meyssan Lies have shorter and shorter legs. Two months after the change of regime in Kiev, the Polish press has disclosed the role of Donald Tusk’s government in preparing the coup. The new revelations belie Western discourse and demonstrate that the current interim government of Oleksandr Tourtchynov was imposed by NATO in violation of international law. || he Polish left-wing weekly Nie (No) published a startling witness account of the training given to the most violent of the EuroMaidan activists. According to this source, in September 2013, Polish Foreign Minister Rados³aw Sikorski invited 86 members of the Right Sector (Sector Pravy), allegedly in the context of a university exchange program. In reality, the guests were not students, and many were over 40. Contrary to their official schedule, they did not go to the Warsaw University of Technology, but headed instead for the police training center in Legionowo, an hour’s drive from the capital. There, they received four weeks of intensive training in crowd management, person recognition, combat tactics, command skills, behavior in crisis situations, protection against gases used by police, erecting barricades, and especially shooting, including the handling of sniper rifles. Such training took place in September 2013, while the Maidan Square protests were allegedly triggered by a decree suspending preparations for the signing of the Ukraine-European Union Association Agreement, which was issued by Prime Minister Mykola Azarov on November 21, i.e. two months later. The Polish weekly refers to photographs attesting to the training, which show the Ukrainians in Nazi uniforms alongside their Polish instructors in civilian clothing.


Permalink U.S. [terror] drone kills 21 [people] in Yemen

A U.S. [terror] drone on early Saturday killed 16 "al-Qaida militants" [people] and five civilians in Yemen' s southeastern province of al-Bayda, a Yemeni army officer said. The drone hit a pickup car which was carrying 16 "suspected militants" [people] in Hazmiah area of al-Bayda, about 268 km southeast of the capital Sanaa, local sources said. Five civilians passing by in a nearby car were also killed. Another six civilians travelling in another car on the highway of Hazmiah area were also wounded, witnesses said. It's the seventh of such drone strikes in the past two months.

Common Dreams: US Drone Obliterates Civilians in Yemen A Yemen military official on Saturday says that at least fifteen people were either killed or wounded when a missile from a U.S. drone struck vehicles traveling on a road in the central province of al-Bayda. A pickup truck that was allegedly hit by a US drone in the al-Bayda province. Among the dead, according reports, are what the official claimed were targeted al-Qaeda militants traveling in two vehicles and also non-targeted passers-by traveling on the same road when the powerful U.S. bomb hit. According to Reuters, "tribal sources said a drone had been circling al-Bayda for days and on Saturday struck two cars the suspected militants were in. Three civilians who happened to be in a nearby car were also killed, they said." A security source told Reuters that the missile "targeted cars that suspected al Qaeda militants were in and killed 13 of them." The Associated Press, however, reports that a "Yemeni official" said nine of the victims in the attack were militants while at least six were "innocent civilians." The discrepancy in the early reporting does nothing to erase the fact that none of those killed in the bombing were given the opportunity to defend themselves or declare their innocence before being obliterated by what is assumed to be a U.S. Air Force drone operator controlling the aircraft from thousands of miles away. (Photograph: Stringer/EPA)

Permalink Mastermind of CIA torture program describes it a 'success'

The mastermind of the US Central Intelligence Agency’s torture program has hit the headlines after seven years to defend the spy agency’s torture techniques. In an interview with the Guardian published on Friday, James Elmer Mitchell has described the CIA's “enhanced interrogation” program as a “success”. Mitchell was hired by the CIA back in 2002 to develop the so-called "enhanced interrogation techniques". Mitchell also said that he is "skeptical" about a Senate Intelligence Committee report on the controversial program. The 6,300-page report prepared by the committee provides details of torture techniques, including water-boarding, sleep deprivations for several days, confining the suspects in a box and hitting them against walls, used by the CIA under the administration of George W. Bush. The report says the “enhanced interrogation” methods, which were devised by Mitchell, were far more brutal than what was previously known.

NYT: Psychologist in Terror War Is Subject of Complaint

Permalink US sends advanced weapons to Syrian 'rebels'

The U.S. and Saudi Arabia have supplied Syrian rebel terrorist groups with a small number of advanced American antitank missiles for the first time in a pilot program that could lead to larger flows of sophisticated weaponry, people briefed on the effort said. This shift is seen as a test of whether the U.S. can find a trustworthy rebel partner able to keep sophisticated weapons out of the hands of extremists, Saudi and Syrian opposition figures said. The U.S. has long feared that if it does supply advanced arms, the weapons will wind up with radical terrorist Groups - some tied to al Qaeda [al-CIAduh]--which have set up bases in opposition-held territory.


Permalink 5 Explosive Revelations Leaked from Senate Report Exposing CIA Torture

What's already public is a clear and systematic abuse of power and human rights. The controversy over a Senate investigation documenting the Central Intelligence Agency’s post-9/11 regime of global torture continues to generate headlines—even though the report has yet to be released. The Senate report has sparked a bitter war between the CIA and senators like Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), who accused the CIA of spying on those looking at CIA documents on torture. But while the official inquiry has not been published, dogged journalists have published key—and disturbing—details of what is contained in it. Based on CIA documents, senators on the powerful committee conducted a four-year long, $40 million inquiry into the CIA’s detention and interrogation program, which included torture tactics like the waterboarding of terrorism suspects, beatings and the smashing of suspects’ heads into walls. While the public may be aware of some of these practices due to past revelations, the information carries heavy weight because it is the Senate confirming many of those claims, which has oversight power over the agency.


Permalink The Astounding Conspiracy Theories of Wall Street Genius Mark Gorton

Hamilton Nolan Mark Gorton is a prominent financier and a respected entrepreneur. He founded the music sharing site Limewire, and he runs Tower Research, a famed high-frequency trading firm. Gorton also believes that the "ruthless" secret cabal that assassinated JFK and planned 9/11 could be coming to kill his family. Mark Gorton does not have a reputation as a crackpot. Quite the opposite. He's been favorably profiled in the New York Times for his business acumen and charitable deeds. His experience as the head of Limewire—which disrupted the music industry and then lost a $100 million lawsuit as a result—was closely followed by the press. And when Michael Lewis's blockbuster new book about high frequency trading was published recently, prominent media outlets turned to Gorton to learn what HFT firms are really like. The Huffington Post even dubbed him "the new face of Wall Street." He is a very respected and very wealthy man.

Permalink UKRAINE WAR: CIA Launches Pre-emptive Attack to Destabilize Russia

In today's video, Christopher Greene of AMTV reports on a CIA led attack in Ukraine.

Permalink Russian State Duma member: Tsoi had his songs written by CIA

‘United Russia’ member Evgeniy Fedorov claims that Viktor Tsoi was assisted by American intelligence officers in writing the ‘Changes’ song. According to the parliament member, dozens thousands experts in the USA worked on the songs of the Kino band’s leader. They studied the situation in the USSR in order to pick the correct words and play on the listeners’ sentiment. “Songs for Tsoi were professionally written in Hollywood in Russian… there was a whole CIA department working for him on breaking up the USSR”, - Evgeniy Fedorov said.


Permalink Did CIA Director Brennan Visit Kiev Recently?

Just a few weeks ago, someone (allegedly Russia) leaked a recorded phone conversation of Victoria Nuland commenting "fuck the EU" and how she (the US) wanted the political stage set in Ukraine. A lot has happened since then but as multiple pro-Russian sources have now 'confirmed', the new puppetmaster appears to be in town (or was). As Interfax reported, citing sources inside the Ukrainian parliament, none other that CIA Director John Brennan landed in Ukraine on Saturday under an assumed name and held a "series of secret meetings" with the country's "power bloc" Interfax reported. As Interfax reports, citing sources...Brennan landed in Ukraine on Saturday under an assumed name and held a "series of secret meetings" with the country's "power bloc" Interfax reported, citing an unidentified official in the Ukrainian parliament.

GMA News/The Truthseeker: White House confirms, downplays CIA chief visit to Kiev
RT.com: White House confirms CIA director visited Ukraine over weekend
Mike Head: CIA director in Ukraine as Washington steps up threats against Russia
Paul Craig Roberts: Washington Drives The World To War
FTM: 35 Countries Where The U.S. Has Supported Fascists, Drug Lords and Terrorists


Permalink Press Kit on Human Rights in Ukraine

Oriental Review The flywheel of political repressions in Ukraine is gaining momentum these days. In sharp contrast with the liberal approach by president Yanukovych to the “Euromaidan” rout, the interim Kievan administration did not hesitate much about cracking down the public uprising against the “neo-Nazi regime” on the rise in the East and South of Ukraine. Today only in Kharkov at least 70 activists have been arrested during the so-called “anti-terrorist operation”. According to the reports, foreign mercenaries presumably from the US Greystone Ltd private military contractor firm were participating in the operation along with the National Guard (majorly consisting of the ultranationalist Pravy (Right) Sector fighters) and some loyal Interior Ministry units. George Orwell was onto something when he coined the phrase, “war is peace,” to describe the groupthink of his fictional future totalitarian society. He would have no trouble recognizing the propaganda on parade during the recent overthrow of the Ukrainian government, during which “peaceful protesters” engaged in killing, burning, and looting … and continue to do so now.

Reuters: Ukraine's east braces for anti-rebel operation as deadline passes
EO Observer: Three EU countries back Ukraine's use of force
RT.com: Ukraine's Slavyansk under siege as Kiev orders crackdown on protests
Alex Lantier: UN Security Council holds emergency meeting over Ukraine
Stephen Lendman: We're All Ukrainians Now


Permalink Russians warned if they go abroad, US might snatch them

US secret services are actively 'hunting' and jailing Russians in revenge for the annexation of Crimea – or so a warning by the Russian Foreign Ministry says. Russia's Foreign Ministry is warning that Russians should refrain from traveling abroad because they could be entrapped by US secret services who are actively "hunting" for Russians to persecute in punishment for Moscow's recent annexation of Crimea, according to an official notice published on the Ministry's website. The message seems directed at the approximately 15 million Russians, most of them middle-class, who leave the country each year for tourism. It says the US, which "unreasonably" refuses to accept the reunification of Russia and Crimea, is seeking revenge by "trying to make a routine practice of 'hunting' for Russian citizens in third countries with the goal of extraditing them to the US, where they will be convicted [and jailed] on what are usually doubtful charges." And it adds that "justice in America" is biased against Russians, who can be "kidnapped" and taken to the US without even notifying Russian consular officials about what is happening. The two cases cited as examples are old bones of contention between Russia and the US: those of convicted arms trader Viktor Bout and convicted cocaine smuggler Konstantin Yaroshenko, both of whom were arrested in third countries and extradited to the US for trial.

PressTV: US imposes sanctions against Crimean officials


Permalink Seymour Hersh: the backlash

On Sunday 6th April, the London Review of Books published an article by Seymour Hersh about the chemical weapon attacks in Ghouta and surrounding areas in August 2013, in which he makes a number of explosive claims.

British scientists at Porton Down had established that the Sarin used in the attacks didn’t match any Sarin known to exist the in Syrian regime’s Arsenal, and then told their U.S. counter-parts that the case against the Assad regime would therefore not ‘hold up’.
That actors within the Turkish military and intelligence establishment thought they could make Obama enforce his ‘Red Line’ on chemical weapons usage by ‘dabbling with a sarin attack inside Syria’.
That when the Obama regime claimed after the attacks that only the Assad regime had access to Sarin, they knew this to be incorrect, as it was contradicted by a Defense Intelligence Agency assessment from June 20th 2013.
That a senior CIA Official had sent a message in August 2013 stating that the attacks were ‘not the result of the current regime. UK & US know this’.
And most explosively of all, that the U.S. Intelligence community had reason to believe, based on communications intercepts, that the attacks were ‘a covert action planned by Erdoðan’s people to push Obama over the red line’. That is, a false flag attack designed to draw the U.S. into an open war with Syria.

The article has caused much consternation among those people in the corporate media and the NGO community who are 100% certain that the Assad regime was responsible for the attacks...

Jonathan Cook: Seymour Hersh and the spineless nay-sayers
In light of Hersh’s recent article on Ghouta, worth revisiting this AP piece from August 29th 2013


Permalink Sy Hersh Reveals Potential Turkish Role in Syria Chemical Strike That Almost Sparked U.S. Bombing

Was Turkey behind last year's Syrian chemical weapons attack? That is the question raised in a new exposé by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh on the intelligence debate over the deaths of hundreds of Syrians in Ghouta last year. The United States, and much of the international community, blamed forces loyal to the Assad government, almost leading to a U.S. attack on Syria. But Hersh reveals the U.S. intelligence community feared Turkey was supplying sarin gas to Syrian rebels in the months before the attack took place -- information never made public as President Obama made the case for launching a strike. Hersh joins us to discuss his findings.

Permalink NATO and Turkey’s Genocidal War on Syria

Cem Ertür All the available evidence indicates that U.S., U.K., Israel, Turkey, France and Saudi Arabia meticulously planned the genocidal covert war on Syria for years before actually launching it in 2011. Right from the beginning, Turkey has been at the epicenter of this war in every possible respect. In the face of the increasingly brutal and reckless attacks across all of its land borders, the Syrian state, army and people have been displaying an outstanding resistance, courage and solidarity. As the prospect of a decisive victory by the Syrian army becomes ever more certain, the orchestrators of this genocide are disseminating all sorts of propaganda on a global scale to obfuscate and cover up their monumental war crimes. However, Turkey and NATO’s overt participation in the ongoing cross-border offensive on Kasab provides an incontrovertible evidence of these crimes for those who seek peace and justice for Syria and the entire humanity.

Permalink The 'Crackdown' Begins: Ukraine Launches "Anti-Terrorist" Operations In Eastern Ukraine, Arrests 70

Despite Russia's veiled threat that any ongoing action against pro-Russian demonstrators had the potential to instigate civil war and bring action by the Russian forces, Ukraine's interior minister Arsen Avakov has announced, Reuters reports, that Ukraine has launched an "anti-terrorist" operation in the eastern city of Kharkiv and about 70 "separatists" have been arrested for seizing the regional administration building. Is this the red-line that Putin laid down last night? As Russia made clear last night, as ITAR-TASS reports,

The Russian Foreign Ministry urged Ukraine to halt any interior military preparations, which could instigate a civil war in the country, the ministry was quoted as saying on its Facebook.com account. “According to our information, units of the Interior troops and Ukraine’s national guards as well as militants from the illegal armed formation ‘The Right Sector’ are being amassed in the southeastern parts of Ukraine and in the city of Donetsk,” the ministry said. “We are particularly concerned that the operation involves some 150 American mercenaries from a private company Greystone Ltd., dressed in the uniform of the [Ukrainian] special task police unit Sokol,” the ministry said.

Zero Hedge: Russia Accuses US Mercenaries Of Inciting Civil War In Ukraine


Permalink US arms Syrian rebels with first heavy weapons

Syrian rebels allegedly have recently obtained high-powered anti-tank weaponry that they could only get abroad. Presumably, the missiles were supplied by the US with the support of the US administration and Pentagon. The story was originally reported by the Israeli website DEBKAfile, an independent a Mossad Internet resource that provides intelligence and security news services. DEBKAfile’s military sources said that in the last several days two militant groups, the Free Syrian Army and Syrian Revolutionary Front, received heavy anti-tank, optically-tracked, wire-guided rockets - BGM-71 TOW missiles. This type of weaponry can pierce 50mm thick tank armor and fortifications at a range of 4 kilometers. Both militias are considered to be moderate by the US. The Obama administration remains committed to assisting rebels in their fight against President Bashar Al-Assad that has lasted for three years. However, the United Stated always underlines that it does not support radical factions in Syria. The anti-tank weapons are shipped through Turkey and Saudi Arabia. To be specific, they are delivered through two routes: the town of Diyarbakir and Saudi King Faisal Air Base at Tabuk.

Jonathan Cook: Seymour Hersh unearths more lies on Syria
Patrick Martin: New exposé by Seymour Hersh: Turkey staged gas attack to provoke US war on Syria
Patrick Martin: Media blacks out Seymour Hersh exposé of US lies on Syrian gas attack


Permalink Syrian Town Turns on al-Qaeda, Killing 50

Reports coming out of Hama, a central Syrian Province, reveal a shocking turn of events, as locals in the town of Taibet al-Emam, sick of living under the rule of al-Qaeda’s Nusra Front, attacked the Islamist rebels. The locals were said to have gotten fed up with the kidnappings and burglaries by Nusra fighters, and took up arms against them, killing at least 50 and chasing them from the town. Taibet al-Emam has been under the control of various rebel factions since December of 2012, when the Free Syrian Army moved into the town. In recent months, as with the rest of Syria, it has fallen under harsher Islamist factions’ control. The rebel factions have so far not commented on the situation, but their ability to control territory on the frontier with the Assad government could be seriously compromised if the locals start turning against them in this manner.

Permalink Tony Blair 'knew all about CIA secret kidnap programme’

Tony Blair knew in detail about the CIA’s secret kidnap and interrogation programme after the September 11 attacks and was kept informed “every step of the way” by MI6, a security source has told The Telegraph. Mr Blair, the then prime minister, and Jack Straw, his foreign secretary, were fully briefed on CIA activities and were shown now infamous Bush administration legal opinions that declared “enhanced interrogation” techniques such as waterboarding and stress positions to be legal, the source said. “The politicians took a very active interest indeed. They wanted to know everything. The Americans passed over the legal opinions saying that this was now 'legal’, and our politicians were aware of what was going on at the highest possible level. “The politicians knew in detail about everything – the torture and the rendition. They could have said [to M16] 'stop it, do not get involved’, but at no time did they,” said the source, who has direct and detailed knowledge of the transatlantic relations during that period.


Permalink Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Over Drone Killings of US Citizens

Insists Courts Can't Examine 'Operational' Decisions. US District Judge Rosemary Collyer has dismissed Nasser al-Awlaki’s lawsuit against Obama Administration officials over the assassination of his son and grandson in US drone strikes in Yemen. Collyer argued that it was “impermissible” for the courts to get involved in “operational combat decisions regarding the designation of targets,” though the US is not involved in combat in Yemen, where the killings took place, and the assassinations were rather planned months in advance, and publicized before they took place.

"Improper" for Judiciary to Decide Whether Killing US Citizens with Drones Violates Due Process Rights


Permalink Limited hangout: Secret CIA Torture Report To Be Released

The US Senate Intelligence Committee votes to declassify parts of a report into the CIA's use of brutal interrogation techniques torture. A US Senate panel has approved the declassification of a secret report that criticises the CIA's treatment of terror suspects after 9/11. The Senate Intelligence Committee voted 11-3 to release key parts of the 6,300-page report that concluded waterboarding and other "enhanced interrogation methods" were excessively cruel and ineffective. White House spokesman Jay Carney said President Barack Obama would instruct intelligence agencies to finalise the declassification quickly. CIA spokesman Dean Boyd said his agency would "carry out the review expeditiously", but suggested the process may be difficult. He said: "We owe it to the men and women directed to carry out this programme to try and ensure that any historical account of it is accurate."

Diaaal News: US senators back release of CIA abuse torture details
The Guardian: Senate committee votes to declassify parts of CIA torture report


Permalink Exposed: How US created 'Cuban Twitter' to take down Castro

The United States engineered a text messaging network in Cuba to try and spread unrest in the communist country. More than 40,000 people have shared news and opinions using the service. The documents obtained by the Associated Press state the project was led by Joe McSpedon, a US government official, who attracted a team of high-tech wizards from around the globe to set up a site that could reach hundreds of thousands of Cubans. The Caribbean island has some of the world’s most stringent internet regulations, so text messaging via cellphones would help to evade the country’s strict information controls. Since Fidel Castro handed over power to his brother Raul, the use of mobile technology has been encouraged. Cubans were given the opportunity to call one another or send text messages, though the cost was high, given that the average salary is just $20 per month. The network was called ZunZuneo, which was a play on twitter, with the word being slang for a Cuban hummingbird’s tweet. The project was financed by the US Agency for international development (USAID), best known for overseeing billions of dollars in US humanitarian aid. The initial plan was to gain users by allowing access to light news stories, such as baseball bulletins, music and weather updates. However, once a critical number of subscribers was reached, operators would introduce political stories aimed at tarnishing the reputation of the Cuban government, with the aim of creating a ‘Cuban Spring’.

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