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PBC News & Comment: Obama Changes Hostage Policies, Opens Pandora’s Box

Under new policy, government continues ransom ban, but allows families of hostages to negotiate, pay kidnappers without facing criminal prosecution….

–in major corporate victory, Senate sets stage to pass TPP fast track for Obama signing on Wednesday

–in ugly move, European Union begins effort to block more boat refugees by pretending to go after traffickers, as 1,000 more are rescued in past 24 hours

–NATO rejoins the fray in Iraq, will provide more training to a military that’s shown that training is pointless; NATO also beefs up presence along Russian borders

–official, anonymous leaks from ObamaCo claim China has been hacking networks for 5 years, undetected at OPM for a year

–Greenwald exposes British agency JTRIG, comparable to a merger of our NSA/FBI with global reach

–UN report on Gaza war crimes by Israel and Hamas may be used by Palestinian Authority at International Criminal Court

–as Supreme Court dribbles out its important decisions, Justice Kennedy sends strong signal about solitary confinement

–like other cities, liberal San Francisco has racist cops and a big backlog of unprocessed rape kits; read the rape kit story here