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Scientists reveal Jewish history’s forgotten Turkish roots

A group of Ashkenazic Jews in Jerusalem, circa 1885 Getty Images

By David Keys, 19 April 2016

Israeli-born geneticist believes the Turkish villages of Iskenaz, Eskenaz and Ashanaz were part of the original homeland for Ashkenazic Jews
New research suggests that the majority of the world’s modern Jewish population is descended mainly from people from ancient Turkey, rather than predominantly from elsewhere in the Middle East.
The new research suggests that most of the Jewish population of northern and eastern Europe – normally known as Ashkenazic Jews – are the descendants of Greeks, Iranians and others who colonized what is now northern Turkey more than 2000 years ago and were then converted to Judaism, probably in the first few centuries AD by Jews from Persia. At that stage, the Persian Empire was home to the world’s largest Jewish communities.
According to research carried out by the geneticist, Dr Eran Elhaik of the University of Sheffield, over 90 per cent of Ashkenazic ancestors come from that converted partially Greek-originating ancient community in north-east Turkey.
His research is based on genetic, historical and place-name evidence. For his geographic genetic research, Dr Elhaik used a Geographic Population Structure computer modelling system to convert Ashkenazic Jewish DNA data into geographical information.
Dr Elhaik, an Israeli-born geneticist who gained his doctorate in molecular evolution from the University of Houston, believes that three still-surviving Turkish villages – Iskenaz, Eskenaz and Ashanaz – on the western part of an ancient Silk Road route were part of the original Ashkenazic homeland. He believes that the word Ashkenaz originally comes from Ashguza – the ancient Assyrian and Babylonian name for the Iron Age Eurasian steppeland people, the Scythians.
Referring to the names of the three Turkish villages, Dr Elhaik points out that “north-east Turkey is the only place in the world where these place-names exist”.

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Ulta-orthodox Ashkenazic Jews during a protest in Jerusalem last year (Getty Images)
From the 690s AD onwards, anti-Jewish persecution by the Christian Byzantine Empire seems to have played a part in forcing large numbers of Jews to flee across the Black Sea to a more friendly state – the Turkic-ruled Khazar Empire with its large Slav and other populations.
Some analyses of Yiddish suggests that it was originally a Slavic language, and Dr Elhaik and others believe that it was developed, probably in the 8th and 9th centuries AD, by Jewish merchants trading along some of the more northerly Silk Roads linking China and Europe.
By the 730s, the Khazar Empire had begun to convert to Judaism – and more people converted to the faith.
But when the Khazar Empire declined in or around the 11th century, some of the Jewish population almost certainly migrated west into Central Europe. There, as Yiddish-speaking Jewish merchants came into contact with central  European, often German-speaking, peoples, they began to replace the Slav words in Yiddish with large numbers of German and German-derived words, while retaining some of its Slav-originating grammar. Many Hebrew words also appear to have been added by that stage.
The genetic modelling used in the research was based on DNA data from 367 Jews of northern and eastern European origin and more than 600 non-Jewish people mainly from Europe and western Asia.
Dr Elhaik says it is the largest genomic study ever carried out on Ashkenazic Jews. His research will be published in the UK-based scientific journal, Genome Biology and Evolution.
Further research is planned to try to measure the precise size of the Semitic genetic input into Jewish and non-Jewish genomes.

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Anti-semitic ‘Jews control the weather’ DC lawmaker makes a disastrous ‘conciliatory’ visit to the Holocaust museum which sees him DEFEND the Nazis and then leave early

D.C. Council member Trayon White defended Nazis during a tour of the Holocaust Museum before leaving early, after making comments in March about about rich Jewish people controlling the weather

D.C. Council member Trayon White defended Nazis during a tour of the Holocaust Museum before leaving early, after making comments in March about about rich Jewish people controlling the weather

By Jessica Finn

A DC councilman who sparked outrage with his anti-Semitic comments about Jews controlling the weather made even more offensive remarks during a disastrous ‘conciliation’ visit to the Holocaust museum on Wednesday.
Council member Trayon White defended Nazis during the 90-minute guided tour of the museum – and then dropped off the tour early.
While viewing a photograph from 1935 of a woman surrounded by Nazi soldiers with a sign hanging from her neck that read: ‘I am a German girl and allowed myself to be defiled by a Jew,’ White asked, ‘Are they protecting her?’
‘No,’ the guide explained to White, according to the Washington Post.  She added, ‘They’re marching her through.’
‘Marching through is protecting,’ White said.
‘I think they’re humiliating her,’ the guide replied.

An aide of White's stayed behind for the duration of the tour- and then compared Jewish ghettos to gated communities 

An aide of White’s stayed behind for the duration of the tour- and then compared Jewish ghettos to gated communities

New York magazine writer Jonathan Chait clarified things politicians who may be confused: Nazis are the bad guys at the Holocaust Museum 

New York magazine writer Jonathan Chait clarified things politicians who may be confused: Nazis are the bad guys at the Holocaust Museum
To make matters worse, White left early, texting Rabbi Batya Glazer, a director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington, who was also in attendance, that he was expected at a meeting. However, White was seen walking around aimlessly outside of the museum.
Then, an aide of White who remained on the tour, made a shocking comment.
The guide was telling the tour about how 450,000 Polish Jews were crowded into one small area, the aide of White asked if the ghetto was similar to ‘a gated community.’
The Rabbi quickly explained to the aide: ‘Yeah, I wouldn’t call it a gated community,’ she said. ‘More like a prison.’
New York magazine writer Jonathan Chait tweeted about the visit: ‘Free advice for any pol who has to visit the Holocaust Museum to prove he’s not anti-Semitic: Just assume the Nazis are the bad guys in all the exhibits.’
White’s comments in March about weather, and posted in a video on Facebook, were aimed at the Rothschild family- a prominent Jewish dynasty descending from Mayer Amschel Rothschild, a wealthy banker who lived in Germany during the 18th century.
‘Man, it just started snowing out of nowhere this morning, man. Y’all better pay attention to this climate control, man, this climate manipulation,’ he says.
‘And D.C. keep talking about, ‘We a resilient city.’ And that’s a model based off the Rothschilds controlling the climate to create natural disasters so they can pay for to own the cities, man. Be careful.’

Initially, White expressed surprised that some interpreted his comments as anti-Semitic but later apologized after consulting with a Jewish advocacy group

Initially, White expressed surprised that some interpreted his comments as anti-Semitic but later apologized after consulting with a Jewish advocacy group
Like many anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, the Rothschilds have been targeted as  clandestine manipulators of world events who exploit others for their own advantage.
‘This kind of anti-Semitism is unacceptable in any public official,’ Rabbi Daniel Zemel of Temple Micah in Northwest Washington said in response to the lawmaker’s remarks.
‘This so diminishes what America is about and adds to the oppressive feeling going on in the country right now,’ said Zemel.
‘We all have to be better. Public officials have to learn not to say the first ignorant thing that comes into their head,’ he added.
Initially, White expressed surprised that some interpreted his comments as anti-Semitic, telling The Post in March ‘The video says what it says.’
But in the wake of the controversy, the councilman said that he had reached out to his ‘friends’ at Jews United for Justice who helped him ‘understand the history of comments made against Jews.’

Rabbi Daniel ZemelJewish D.C. Councilwoman Brianne K. Nadeau

Rabbi Daniel Zemel (L) immediately condemned White for his language but  Jewish D.C. Councilwoman Brianne K. Nadeau (R) said in a statement that White was sincere in his apology
‘I work hard everyday to combat racism and prejudices of all kinds. I want to apologize to the Jewish Community and anyone I have offended,’ said White at the time.
There is not yet another apology from White at this time.

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When criticizing one trillionair, who happens to be a jew, makes you an Anti-Semite, the word becomes completely meaningless.
Maybe (((they))) should grow a thicker skin in stead of growing a bigger bank account.

Where is Israel’s outrage at the appalling massacre in Gaza?

By Gideon Levy, 14 April 2018

A video of Israeli soldiers cheering the killing of yet another unarmed protester has highlighted the chilling sentiments of a broad segment of the public
For the last few weeks, Palestinians in Gaza have been marching every Friday towards the Israeli fence, and every Friday, they have been met with live fire from Israeli soldiers. More than 30 Palestinians have been killed and hundreds more wounded since the “Great March of Return” began on 30 March.
The demonstrators were unarmed and did not threaten the lives of the soldiers beyond the fence. What’s been happening is a massacre; there’s no other word to describe it.
Israel has responded to these events with its typical lack of interest. Only the thick black smoke from burning tyres, which may have drifted towards Israeli communities along the fence, threatened the serenity of their Passover holiday.

No collective sense of horror

The extent of the violence against unarmed civilians, coupled with the fact that Israel has non-lethal options for dealing with demonstrations, has failed to evoke a significant public discussion in Israel.
Even some of the most disturbing footage – such as the clip of a protester rising from his prayers only to be met with a bullet, or the woman holding a flag and nearing the fence and falling to the ground from a sniper’s shot – have failed to evoke a collective sense of horror.
When a Palestinian journalist was shot by a sniper despite wearing a vest clearly marked “Press,” Israelis were quick to brand him as a “Hamas activist” or a “terrorist with a drone”.
Israel remains untroubled by an army that shoots demonstrators and journalists, and is even proud of it, rationalising that these are not innocent protesters but rather terrorists threatening its sovereignty and security. Politicians from across Israel’s political spectrum, except the radical left, have competed among themselves to see who could salute the army the most.
And then the media got hold of a short video, just a minute and 24 seconds long. Once again, it showed a blurry image of an unarmed Palestinian approaching the fence, only to be shot by a soldier before falling to the ground. We’ve already seen other similar videos, and Israel did not get upset. But in this one, there was a soundtrack that made a difference: In the background, soldiers can be heard cursing and expressing overt, vulgar enthusiasm as the unarmed victim falls to the ground.
Israel cannot now proceed with the routine of denial and repression. It became impossible to go on defending soldiers when they were heard expressing themselves in that manner. The contemptible work of Israeli snipers, who aim and fire at protesters, suddenly acquired a repellent soundtrack. Suddenly, it was a scandal.

Media collusion

But even this minor tempest quickly subsided. The army initially tried to shrug off all responsibility for the clip, and then hastened to announce that it was actually from last December – as if this would make the horror of it obsolete.
The media, as usual, swiftly colluded with this denial and repression. Within a day, the clip was forgotten. Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who is among the most extreme, cynical and despicable of Israeli politicians, proclaimed that the sniper should get a citation, but the soldier who filmed him should be demoted. Education Minister Naftali Bennett, leader of the Jewish Home party, rushed to support the soldiers in the clip, as did many other politicians from across the political spectrum.

Palestinians evacuate an injured protester near the Israeli border fence in central Gaza on 13 April 2018 (AFP)
In truth, Israel should have been horrified a long time ago – long before the first “March of Return” commenced, when it was already clear that soldiers were prepared to shoot protesters with live fire. The Israeli army boasted that “100 snipers” and tanks were waiting for the marchers. A healthy society would have reacted at the outset, forcing them to hold their fire.
Israelis should have been horrified at the first massacre on Land Day, when more than a dozen Palestinians were killed and hundreds more wounded; then at the massive army attacks the following Friday; then at the video clip of the cheering soldiers. But Israeli society has lost its moral compass and is numb to these things.

The case of Ahed Tamimi

A society that does not get agitated at the arrest of Ahed Tamimi – a teenage girl stood bare-handed, facing soldiers who had invaded her backyard, and tried to kick them out as they deserved, after other soldiers shot her cousin in the head a short while earlier – will not be upset by anything.
Ahed’s image has become an icon all over the world, and two million people have signed a petition calling for her release. Only in Israel is her fate of no concern to anyone. Ahed remains in prison, and Israel has lost interest. There’s no solidarity from Israeli parents of children Ahed’s age, and no jurists have come forward to decry the brutality Israel demonstrates in its arrests of minors.
Women’s organisations did not step up to oppose the embarrassing arrest of Ahed and her mother, who was also sent to jail for having filmed her daughter slapping a soldier in the face. There was no mass outrage from artists, intellectuals or ordinary citizens living under a regime that jails minors only because they are Palestinians opposed to the occupation. None of that happened when Ahed was arrested, and it most certainly did not happen after those scenes along the Gaza fence.
Two million people live in Gaza, the world’s largest open-air prison, victims of a dreadful experiment on human beings. The UN has already said that by 2020, this cage will not be fit for human habitation. It is now 2018, but Israel averts its gaze from Gaza – does not see, does not want to see and is not interested.

Dehumanisation of Palestinians in Gaza

Israelis have become accustomed to thinking that Gaza is a nest of terrorists, and that its residents have no rights whatsoever – that Gazans are actually not human beings. And if Gazans are not human beings, no war crime, disaster or victimisation will evoke even one iota of horror, one glint of moral uncertainty, one gram of human solidarity – and certainly no protest or opposition.
No remnants of a collective conscience remain in Israel insofar as Palestinians are concerned. A long, ongoing, systematic process, led by politicians and generals with the collusion of the Israeli media, is now reaching its peak. Never in memory has there been such extreme cold-heartedness evident in Israel, which already has a very impressive record of cold-heartedness towards Palestinians, from the time of the 1948 Nakba right up to the present day.
In Gaza, the blood of civilians is being shed in vain, and Israel, whose soldiers are shedding that blood, is unmoved. Certain segments of Israeli society even find this cause for happiness, pride, gratification.
The voices of the soldiers in that repellent video are the voices of a large proportion of Israelis – though not all of them, of course. The soldiers were expressing authentic, if covert, sentiments harboured by a broad segment of the Israeli public, much broader than it would appear. Watch the video and see the Israel of 2018; some of it, anyway.

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‘Whole story was staged’: Germany’s ZDF reporter says Douma incident was false flag attack

‘Whole story was staged’: Germany's ZDF reporter says Douma incident was false flag attack

Douma, Syria. April 16, 2018 © Ali Hashisho / Reuters
The alleged chemical attack in the Syrian city of Douma was staged by local militants, who tried to frame it as a Syrian Army strike, a German TV correspondent, who travelled to Damascus, has said publicly, citing local witnesses.
“People told us in a very convincing manner that this whole story was staged,” Uli Gack, a reporter with the German ZDF public broadcaster, said (referring to the alleged Douma chemical attack) while he spoke live on ZDF Heute (‘Today’) show on Satuday.
Gack had travelled to Syria and visited one of the refugee camps near Damascus, where “some 20,000 people from Eastern Ghouta and particularly from Douma” were living.
The scene of the attack, which allegedly took place on April 7, was in fact the “command post” of a local Islamist group, the reporter said, citing the witnesses he was able to speak to at the refugee camp.
He went on to say that, according to the locals, the militants brought canisters containing chlorine to the area and “actually waited for the Syrian Air Force to bomb the place, which was of particular interest for them.”
As the Syrian forces eventually struck the place, which was apparently a high-priority military target, the chlorine canisters exploded. The locals also told Gack that it is not the first such provocation in Douma that was staged by the militants.
According to other witness accounts, the militants deliberately exposed people to chemical agents during what they called “training exercises” then filmed it and later presented as an “evidence” of the alleged chemical attack in Douma.
The reporter then said he could not verify the people’s statements and cannot say if they are all true but called them quite “convincing”and added that they deserve attention.
Earlier, the Russian military said that they had found a laboratory operated by militants in central Douma, which was capable of producing chemical weapons.
In particular they found a cylinder filled with chlorine, which looks similar to the one that was shown in one of the videos of the alleged chemical attack in Douma and presented as a “chemical bomb dropped from a helicopter.”
The purported chemical incident in Douma allegedly took place on April 7. A week later, Washington and its allies launched a massive retaliatory missile strike against Syria, without even waiting for the Organization for the Prohibition of the Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to start its investigation of the incident.
Russia denounced those US-led strikes, calling them “hooliganism” in international relations and “an aggression against a sovereign state.”
In the meantime, western media embarked on a massive campaign of accusing Moscow and Damascus of “blocking” the OPCW investigators from accessing the scene of the alleged attack. Gack, however, also seemingly dismissed this narrative, saying that the delay in the OPCW team’s work may indeed have been caused by security issues.
The German reporter also pointed out that some hidden extremist cells might be still operating and carrying out attacks in the recently liberated areas, even “weeks” after they had been retaken from militants.
Gack’s report was immediately labeled as “propaganda” by some of his fellow journalists in Germany. A reporter with the German Bild daily, Bjoern Stritzel, who in particular is said to have been working undercover and actively communicating with Islamic State (IS, former ISIS) terrorists, lashed out at Gack, calling his report an “unbelievable pro-Assad propaganda on German Television.”
Last week, the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said that there are still militants in Douma who “terrorize citizens and, among other things, impede the normal work of representatives of the international community – the UN and the OPCW.” On Saturday, the OPCW eventually confirmed that its team visited one of the sites of the suspected chemical attack in Douma and collected samples for analysis.

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Norway-Trained ‘Anti-Daesh’ Rebels Turn Against Assad – Report

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (C) new Defence Minister Hassan Turkmani (L) and former Defence Minister Mustafa Tlass attend a ceremony at the unknown soldier monument in Damascus, Syria October 6, 2003.

© REUTERS / SANA
Syrian “rebels” Norway has trained to contribute to the fight against Daesh are now supposed to have turned their weapons against the Syrian government. The rebels’ leader makes no secret of the fact that overthrowing Bashar Assad is the main goal.
The Norwegian-trained Syrian militia called the Revolutionary Command Army (MaT) meant to help quell Daesh* are now waging a war against the Syrian leadership and pro-government forces, the Norwegian daily Klassekampen reported.
According to Klassekampen, the rebel group is now openly fighting for a regime change in Syria, while also being an important part of the US’s efforts to prevent Iranian influence in the region.
In May 2016, it was announced that Norwegian soldiers were to be dispatched to Syria’s neighbor country Jordan to provide “training, counseling and operational support” to Syrian paramilitary groups fighting Daesh as part of the US-led Operation Inherent Resolve. In June 2016, the Norwegian parliament also green-lit similar missions in Syria itself.
While Norway’s Syria contribution was formally concluded in March this year, as the mandate formally expired, the exact extent and nature of Norway’s involvement was largely kept secret. MaT commander Muhannad al-Talla confirmed to Klassekampen that his group was trained by Norwegians in al-Tanf in southeastern Syria, where the US also has a base.
While both Prime Minister Erna Solberg and then-Defense Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide emphasized the mandate was to fight Daesh, ensuring that they “won’t endanger the peace process,” al-Talla claimed that his Western allies never concealed that his soldiers were to fight both terrorists and the Syrian government.
“From the very beginning, I’ve been completely aware that I’m fighting “the Islamic State” and the al-Assad forces. [Daesh] is not gone but is clearly weakened. Now the priority is the fight Assad,” al-Talla admitted to Klassekampen.
The al-Tanf Base is a strategic outpost along the main route between Damascus and Baghdad. There, the US has created a so-called 55-square-kilometer safety zone secured by US soldiers with the help of al-Talla’s units.
Within the zone, Assad-loyal troops have been bombed at least two times by US combat aircraft. At the same time, several rebel groups, including MaT took part in an offensive against government forces after Daesh’s withdrawal from eastern Syria. Insurgent Free Syrian Army (FSA) spokesman and counselor Ibrahim al-Idlibi confirmed to Klassekampen that Norway-trained “militia” took part in the struggle against Assad associated forces, such as the operation “The Country is Ours” carried out in May and June 2017.
While the Syrian government has managed to reclaim most of the country’s territory from Daesh and various rebel groups, MaT leader Muhannad al-Talla is by his own admission not ready to lay down arms.
“It is true that the current balance of power favors Assad. But we will never let him have peace. Even if he wins the war, we will continue to make his life sad for him,” al-Talla pledged.
According to Klassekampen, MaT and other West-supported paramilitary groups are part of a larger superpower game, where the US seeks to ensure control in the border area between Syria and Iran to stop further Iranian influence in the region.
According to FSA spokesman al-Idlibi, the goal of MaT and similar rebel groups is to “fight Iranian and Shia groups” in the area. Al-Idlibi pledged that the fight will continue “until the mission is complete.”
“At the moment, the goal is to control the main road between Damascus and Baghdad. Thus, we prevent land expansion for Iranian forces between Syria and Iraq through the desert,” al-Idlibi pointed out.
Both Muhannad al-Talla and the Norwegian Ministry of Defense denied that Norwegians ever participated in the fight against the Syrian government and its allies. Norway formally ceased its mission in Syria, with the Defense Ministry deciding to focus on Iraq.
* Daesh (also known as IS/ISIS/ISIL) is a terrorist organization banned in Russia

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Robots will outnumber humans by 2048: Leading futurologist predicts droid population to grow from 57million to 9.4billion in 30 years

According to ‘leading futurologist’ Dr Ian Pearson, earth’s robot population will grow from around 57 million to 9.4billion over the next 30 years

According to ‘leading futurologist’ Dr Ian Pearson, earth’s robot population will grow from around 57 million to 9.4billion over the next 30 years

By James Salmon

The vision of robots taking over the world might sound like something out of a dystopian science fiction novel.
But robots will outnumber humans by 2048, an expert has predicted today. According to ‘leading futurologist’ Dr Ian Pearson, earth’s robot population will grow from around 57 million to 9.4billion over the next 30 years.
Dr Pearson, a British novelist, engineer and inventor, said robots could also become ‘emotionally intelligent’ by 2028.
He said his predictions are based on the ‘modest’ assumption that the number of robots will grow by a fifth each year.
If the take-up is quicker, robots could overtake humans by as early as 2033.
Separate studies have predicted huge numbers of workers will be replaced by robots – with manufacturing, finance, accountancy and transport among those hardest hit.
Only last week Bank of England governor Mark Carney warned the automation of millions of jobs could lead to mass unemployment, rising inequality, wage stagnation, and the resurgence of Marxism within a generation.
Dr Pearson said: ‘Today the global robot population is probably around 57 million. That will grow quickly in the foreseeable future and by 2048 robots will overtake humans. If we allow for likely market acceleration, that could happen as early as 2033. By 2028, some of those robots will already be starting to feel genuine emotions and to respond to us emotionally.’ The idea of robots taking over the world makes many of us nervous.
According to a poll of 2000 adults, seven in ten (71 per cent) fear the rise of artificially intelligent robots, and nearly six in ten (59 per cent) believe robots pose a threat to humanity.
More than half of those surveyed (54 per cent) believe scientists won’t be able to control the rise of artificially intelligent robots.
Asked what frightens them most about the rise of robots, almost half (43 per cent) said they were worried robots will take control of society, almost four in ten (37 per cent) fear robots could become more intelligent than humans, and over a third (34 per cent) worry robots could reduce their chances of getting a new job.
The research was commissioned by streaming service NOW TV which is promoting the launch of the second series of Westworld.

Separate studies have predicted huge numbers of workers will be replaced by robots - with manufacturing, finance, accountancy and transport among those hardest hit

Separate studies have predicted huge numbers of workers will be replaced by robots – with manufacturing, finance, accountancy and transport among those hardest hit
Based on the 1973 Michael Crichton film starring Yul Brynner, this is about androids in a Western-themed amusement park that start killing visitors.
But there are some very heavyweight people that believe we should take the threat of robots very seriously.
Experts have warned many professions including accountants and estate agents could be almost wiped out.
Bank of England governor Mark Carney has predicted that 15million Britons- almost half of the 31.8million workforce – could be replaced by robots over the coming years as livelihoods were ‘mercilessly destroyed’ by the technological revolution.
But some believe it’s not just our jobs we should be worried about.
Elon Musk, the billionaire founder of PayPal, Tesla and SpaceX has warned robots post a ‘fundamental risk to the existence’ of humanity.
In response to footage of a 6 foot nine inch humanoid robot made by Boston Robotics doing a back flip, Mr Musk warned on Twitter:
‘This is nothing. In a few years, that bot will move so fast you’ll need a strobe light to see it. Sweet dreams…’ Others have stressed that the rise of machines will boost productivity, creating other jobs for humans.

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