Israel seeking three new submarines from Germany: report

“The Israeli defence ministry declined to comment.

Israel already has five of the state-of-the-art German submarines, with a sixth due for delivery in 2017, Maariv said.

Foreign military sources say the Dolphins can be equipped with missiles armed with nuclear warheads.

They say Israel has between 100 and 200 warheads and missiles capable of delivering them.

Israel is the Middle East’s sole if undeclared nuclear power, refusing to confirm or deny it has such weapons.”

The Ugly Truth


DAILY MAIL – Israel is seeking to buy (i.e. get for free) three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 billion), an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

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Transparency Project: Press regulation, why we are unimpressed by IPSO – Paul Magrath

“The Transparency Project aims to promote the publication of “balanced, accurate and accessible information about the work of family courts” and one of its key activities is to correct or explain cases which have been misreported in the media. Clearly, where a newspaper publishes skewed or inaccurate information about something a judge has said, and the judge himself is not in a position to complain, it should be possible for IPSO to take action against the newspaper in response to a complaint made by a group of lawyers or legal commentators, or other concerned individuals, who don’t happen to be the “directly affected” by the publication.

IPSO’s failure even to consider the complaint, in the example in which we were concerned, for reasons which don’t appear to chime with its own procedural rules, suggests it has some way to go in demonstrating that it is an effective regulator.”

Inforrm's Blog

IPSO-logo1There are many things wrong with the way the national press reports legal matters, especially matters relating to the Family Court and the Court of Protection. But they are not going to get better unless and until the so-called regulator, IPSO, takes firmer action to enforce the Editors Code of Practice.

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Ruling on Fatima Manji is further proof that IPSO fails as a press regulator – Alexander Brown

“I believe that the new sub-clause would both provide greater protection for groups against hate speech material that does not name specific individuals, but would at the same time be drawn narrowly enough to prevent excessive restriction of free speech on issues of public interest relating to groups. It would also bring the Code into line with similar regulations adopted by media organisations in other parts of the developed world.

The ConversationAlexander Brown, Senior Lecturer in Contemporary Social and Political Theory, University of East Anglia”

Inforrm's Blog

image-20161020-8862-1be8neuShortly after the Nice terror attack in July, Kelvin MacKenzie, a former editor of The Sun newspaper addressed the issue in his regular column in the tabloid newspaper: “Was it appropriate for [Fatima Manji] to be on camera when there had been yet another shocking slaughter by a Muslim?” he asked.

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# Human rights: availability of special measures for vulnerable witnesses and children

# Human rights: availability of special measures for vulnerable witnesses and children

What criminal proceedings procedures offer the family courts to help vulnerable witnesses?


What criminal proceedings procedures offer the family courts to help vulnerable witnesses?

The failure of the family proceedings rule-makers to provide protective rules for children and vulnerable witnesses in family and – to an extent – other civil proceedings tends towards a failure of the government to provide a fair trial (European Convention 1950 Art 6(1)) for such individuals. Protection has been available, to a sophisticated level, for children and vulnerable witnesses in criminal proceedings at least since the introduction of Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999 (YJCEA 1999) Part 2. If it be accepted that YJCEA 1999 is mostly a codification of common law remedies, then the failure of judges in family proceedings to use them (see references below eg to Re S (Children) [2016] EWCA Civ 83 (considered further below) compounds the unfair trail aspect.

In 2014 Sir James Munby, President of the Family Division, set up…

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LAA clarifies potential use of embarrassment clause

Legal Aid Handbook

The 2017 crime contract contains a controversial clause in the standard terms. Clause 2.2 says:

You shall ensure that neither you nor any of your Affiliates embarrasses us or otherwise brings us into disrepute by engaging in any act or omission which is reasonably likely to diminish the trust that the public places in us, regardless of whether or not such act or omission is related to your obligations under this Contract. Any operation of this Clause is subject to our obligation to act as a responsible public body and any sanction must be proportionate.

Practitioner groups and others were concerned at the chilling effect of the clause and its potential to deter legitimate criticism of the LAA given that breach may lead to contract termination. Acting for Tuckers and Ben Hoare Bell, the Public Law Project sent a letter before action threatening judicial review. PLP has announced that the…

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‘Overwhelming majority’ of Palestinian minors in Israeli custody are ‘tortured’ — Kia Ora Gaza

Ma’an New Agency report, Ramallah, West Bank, 18 October 2016 The “overwhelming majority” of Palestinian minors held in Israel’s Megiddo and Ofer prisons have been tortured during their detention and interrogation, the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs said Tuesday, amid a marked increase in the incarceration and mistreatment of Palestinian children by Israel. Lawyer for […]

via ‘Overwhelming majority’ of Palestinian minors in Israeli custody are ‘tortured’ — Kia Ora Gaza

Jeremy Hunt admits ‘cooking the books’ over NHS £10bn pledge | Political Scrapbook — Britain Isn’t Eating

Hunt has been taken to task by the Health Select Committee today, who accused him of massaging the figures in his bizarre claim that £10 billion has been made in NHS investment. The usual suspects are looking fairly sheepish when asked about @DHgovuk accounting tricks to ‘balance’ NHS books@CommonsHealth 18/10/16 — Dr Ben White (@ProtocoIDriven) October 18, 2016 […]

via Jeremy Hunt admits ‘cooking the books’ over NHS £10bn pledge | Political Scrapbook — Britain Isn’t Eating

The Three Principles of Child Custody Recommendations

“Operational Definitions: There are no operational definitions for the key constructs of “parental capacity” and “best interests of the child.” Defining the key constructs to be assessed is foundational to the development of an assessment procedure. Without operational definitions for the key constructs of “parental capacity” and “best interests of the child,” individual child custody evaluators are free to arbitrarily apply, misapply, or not apply, any, some, or none of the established principles and constructs of professional psychology in any way the evaluator chooses in order to reach an arbitrary decision regarding child custody which is potentially biased by the evaluator’s own beliefs, prejudices, knowledge base, and personal family-of-origin history.”
” Pathogenic Parenting: Pathogenic parenting is the creation of significant pathology in the child through aberrant and distorted parenting practices (patho-pathology; genic=genesis, creation). Pathogenic parenting that is creating significant developmental and psychiatric pathology in the child may warrant the DSM-5 diagnosis of V995.51 Child Psychological Abuse and a child protection response. In all cases of child abuse (physical abuse, sexual abuse, and psychological abuse), the standard and appropriate mental health response is to protectively separate the child from the abusive parent, treat the impact of the abuse on the child and restore the child’s healthy development, and then to reintroduce the child to the formerly abusive parent with sufficient safeguards to ensure that the child is safe and that the abuse does not resume. During the protective separation period, the abusive parent is typically required to seek collateral individual therapy to gain insight into the cause of the prior abusive parenting practices”

Dr Craig Childress: Attachment-Based "Parental Alienation"

I have just posted these three principles for child custody recommendations to my website:

The Three Principles of Child Custody Recommendations

Principle 1 – Child Custody Evaluations: There is no established validity for the conclusions and recommendations reached by child custody evaluations.

Child custody evaluations violate all of the professional standards of practice for the development of an assessment procedure.

A.)  Inter-Rater Reliability: There is no established inter-rater reliability for the conclusions and recommendations of child custody evaluations.  Two different evaluators can reach two entirely different sets of conclusions and recommendations based on the same data.  If an assessment procedure is not reliable, then the assessment procedure cannot, by definition, be valid (the issue is not the collection of data, it is the interpretation of the data).

B.)  Validity: There are no scientific studies that establish the construct validity, content validity, predictive validity, convergent validity, or discriminant validity of the…

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“The Rules

PD 27A is concerned with court bundles in the Family Division and the Family Court. It sets out the basic requirements, but importantly it makes clear at 2.1 that these are subject to specific directions in any particular case. Under paragraph 6:

The party preparing the bundle must provide a paginated index to all other parties not less than 4 working days before the hearing

Where counsel is instructed, s/he must have a paginated bundle not less than 3 working days before the hearing

The bundle (with the exception of the preliminary documents, known as Practice Direction documents) must be lodged with the court not less than 2 working days before the hearing

The PD documents must be lodged with the court no later than 11 am on the day before the hearing. The rule does not provide for service on the other parties, but the implication must be that the document will be sent to them no later than that.

These are minimum service requirements that should be adapted in individual cases to protect the rights of LIPs. The need for earlier preparation and service places obligations on advocates and those who instruct them, but that is necessary to prevent the intrinsic unfairness to LIPs that may arise from late service.”

Kerry Underwood

In Re B (Litigants in Person: Timely Service of Documents) [2016] EWHC 2365 (Fam)

Mr Justice Peter Jackson:

  1. This judgment, published with the approval of the President of the Family Division, arises from a recent final hearing in a child abduction case in which legal documents – counsel’s position statement (14 pages) and four law reports (100 pages) – were given at the door of the court to a non-English-speaking litigant in person (LIP). This is unfortunately not an unusual occurrence, and it calls for a remedy.


  1. Where one party is represented and the other is a LIP, the court should normally direct as a matter of course that the Practice Direction documents under PD27A are to be served on the LIP at least three days before the final hearing, especially where the LIP is not fluent in English. The method of service, usually email, should be specified…

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