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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Floatin' Powa News Service: Now With 50% More Hammer & Sickle Power!

Russia calls on Israel to halt construction in east Jerusalem

Europe raises pressure on Israel to stop settlements
Germany, France and EU president Sweden on Tuesday joined Western nations pressing Israel to stop building settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank under a U.S.-led effort to resume stalled peace talks.
Mitchell, Gates, Jones to visit Jerusalem next week
We would fare far better sending Moe Larry & Curly.

Jordan revokes citizenship of thousands of Palestinians
Jordan this week began revoking the citizenship of thousands of Palestinians who have personal roots in Judea and Samaria. Jordanian officials told reporters that the decision was made in order to head off any possible Israeli plans to evict Palestinians from Judea and Samaria and demand that Jordan take them in.

Bomb injures 50 at wedding for nephew of Fatah leader
Oh those Hamassholes are such a blast at parties!

Palestinian Authority claims the Wailing Wall

Hamas sets preconditions for PA elections

Hamas: The terror elite

Not long ago, I heard a senior European diplomat describe Hamas as a relatively moderate organization in the context of the Middle East. Moreover, while perhaps not characterizing Hamas as "moderate" overall, American politicians such as John Kerry and Jimmy Carter and Europeans such as Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi and Britain's Tony Blair have spoken of "engaging with moderates" within Hamas. It is vitally important for Americans to understand that Hamas is the antithesis of a moderate organization, and that to belong to this Islamofascist outfit is to be "immoderate."

PA releasing many Hamas men
The Palestinian Authority (P.A.) released 40 Hamas prisoners. It pledged to release hundreds more, to offer reconciliation to Hamas...
'Erekat wanted Mottaki's help on Hamas'

Netanyahu's son enters army

Citizens protest Chicago Islamic Conference

NY Muslims Line up in Support of pro-Jizya Islamic Preacher

Clinton indicates US reconciled to nuclear-armed Iran
Israeli officials were furious on Wednesday after US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton indicated that her government has reconciled itself to the idea of Iran acquiring nuclear weapons, and shifted its focus to minimizing the damage caused by such a reality. Speaking to reporters in Bangkok on Tuesday, Clinton said that Iran needs to "calculate what I think is a fair assessment: that if the United States extends a defense umbrella over the region, if we do even more to develop the military capacity of those (allies) in the Gulf, it is unlikely that Iran will be any stronger or safer" even if it has nuclear weapons.

Israeli Minister of Intelligence Dan Meridor said in an interview with Army Radio that speaking of deterring a nuclear Iran with a defensive umbrella while it is still possible to prevent Iran from getting nukes in the first place is unacceptable. "I heard, unenthusiastically, the Americans' statement that they will defend their allies in the event that Iran arms itself with an atomic bomb, as if they have already reconciled with this possibility, and this is a mistake," Meridor said. "Now, we don't need to deal with the assumption that Iran will attain nuclear weapons but to prevent this."
Indian Peace-keepers Helping Hezbollah

UN SEZ: Palestinians stuck near Iraq to move to Slovakia
Nearly one hundred Palestinians who spent the last six years stranded between Iraq and Syria will be moved temporarily to Slovakia, pending resettlement elsewhere, the United Nations refugee agency said on Tuesday.

The 98 refugees, who were living in "appalling conditions" in makeshift camps near the desert border, will be housed in northeastern Slovakia from August, the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said.

"They will stay at the new center for up to six months while their final resettlement to other countries is arranged," UNHCR spokesman Ron Redmond told a news briefing.

Romania opened a similar transit center last year, and the United States, Chile, and several European countries have taken in many of the thousands of Palestinians who were marooned after the start of the U.S.-led war.

Shariah Index will rate countries' Islamic law
KUALA LUMPUR: Many countries are Islamic, but some may be more Islamic than others. Now moves are afoot to rate nations according to how closely they adhere to the principles of Islam. The Shariah Index Project is led by Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, a New York-based cleric who heads the Cordoba Initiative, a multinational project to improve relations between Muslim countries and the West.

He announced it on Sunday, on the final day of the Women’s Islamic Initiative in Spirituality and Equality conference in Malaysia. The project has been in the works since 2006, with researchers quietly holding behind-the-scenes meetings with scholars, activists and government officials.

“We have been soliciting the opinion of scholars throughout the Muslim world, asking them what defines an Islamic state, from the point of view of Islamic law,” he said.
“What are the principles that make a state Islamic? We can say among them is justice, protection of religion and minorities and elimination of poverty, and so on.”

The Cordoba Initiative, which co-sponsored the Wise conference, is a non-profit organisation with offices in New York and Kuala Lumpur. It is funded by the Malaysian government and other sources in both western and Muslim countries.
Islamic Guards Emerge as Key Power Bloc in Splintered Iran
The corps has become a vast military-based conglomerate, with control of Iran’s missile batteries, oversight of its nuclear program and a multibillion-dollar business empire reaching into nearly every sector of the economy. It runs laser eye-surgery clinics, manufactures cars, builds roads and bridges, develops gas and oil fields and controls black-market smuggling, experts say.
Iran police detain protesters in Tehran clash

Iran's supreme leader tells Ahmadinejad to sack deputy

5.5 Earthquake - SOUTHERN IRAN

Middle East Christians Hit the Road
Attacks on six churches in Iraq early this month and the targeting of Christians across the country have served as a microcosm of the difficulties facing Christians in the Middle East today. Migration, whether forced or to pursue a better life and employment opportunities elsewhere, has seen Christian numbers in the Middle East drop dramatically.

in 1948 Jerusalem was about one-fifth Christian but today that number stands at 2%, the New York Times reported in May. In Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus Christ, Christians now account for about 30% of the population, where they once made up around 80% of its inhabitants. In Lebanon, where Christians continue to hold significant political and social sway, their numbers are considerably higher than elsewhere in the region but are believed to be falling. A region that a century ago was 20% Christian is about 5% today, with the figures still dropping fast.

'Go ahead and hang me': Mumbai gunman
The court has yet to hear detailed evidence about telephone calls in which the gunmen allegedly spoke to their "handlers" in Pakistan during the attacks.
Pakistan demands US intelligence, ammunition
US President Barack Obama's troubleshooter for Afghanistan and Pakistan was visiting for a second time in seven weeks for talks the White House said would focus on economic and security issues -- and 1.9 million displaced civilians.
Pakistan Court Summons Musharraf, Who May Face Treason Charge

Pakistan, Tajikistan agree to promote cooperation

Drug business pays dividends in Tajikistan
Sitting in a modest chair in his air-conditioned office in the Tajik Drug Control Administration's headquarters, General Rustam Nazarov's red-ringed eyes betray his exhaustion.
Almost 47 kg of heroin seized in Uzbekistan
Central Asian republics are a major gateway to Russia and Europe for the continual flow of drugs from Afghanistan, the world's leading producer of opium and heroin.
Need a job? There's always Uzbekistan
If you're out of luck or out of gas we can send you to Satanistan!

Kyrgyzstan to hold presidential election

Kyrgyzstan opposition cries foul ahead of election

The main opposition candidate in Kyrgyzstan's July 23 presidential elections, Almazbek Atambayev, on Tuesday said the government was planning to rig the vote and if this happened public protests may follow. The Central Asian state, home to U.S. and Russian military air bases, has become an object of increasing rivalry between the two superpowers seeking to boost their influence in the region which is close to Afghanistan.

Kyrgyzstan may decide on new Russian base in August

Lord Mayor flying into a storm in Kazakhstan
Ian Luder, the Lord Mayor of the City of London, is in danger of being dragged into a controversy during next week’s official visit to Kazakhstan over the detention of a leading businessman. I understand that the wife of the man who used to run Kazatomprom, the state-owned nuclear company, has written to Mr Luder requesting that her husband’s case be raised by his delegation when they meet ministers and business leaders in the country.
Kazakhstan investigates Alliance Bank
Just like here!
The government appointed a new management team to Alliance in February after its key shareholder, local company SAFC, said it would not be able to support the bank in the long run.
China and Russia in joint anti-terrorism exercise

Dragon sustains Caspian drilling program

Brazil interested in Russian oil, gas, nuclear expertise

US Urged to Supply Georgia With Defensive Weapons
We will not do this, guaranteed.

Biden Chastises Ukrainian Leaders

Ukraine 'must choose own allies'
As must we all.

Medvedev to Meet with United Russia Youth

It is the “Year of Youth” as Medvedev’s press secretary told the business daily. Yet, according to Kommersant’s sources, United Russia has yet to form a plan to addressing young members most pressing concern: forming a cadre of young political reserves. This isn’t expected to happen until the end of the year.
Why Do Russia's Streets Carry The Names Of Killers?
I never thought I’d find myself agreeing with Vladimir Yakunin. A product of the “organs” (it is widely believed that in the 1980s he worked as a KGB agent in New York), a member of Vladimir Putin’s shadowy Ozero dacha cooperative, the director of several commercial firms, a trustee of a “patriotic-Great Power” organization, the head of Russian Railways – Yakunin’s biography is a model portrait of the elite of Russia’s current chekist kleptocracy.

But, as they say, even a broken clock is right twice a day.

Earlier this month, Yakunin signed an order restoring the historical name of Moscow’s Leningradsky railway station – Nikolayevsky vokzal. And he promised that this rechristening would not be the last. However, the order stood for only a few hours – after an urgent telephone call, it was rescinded and the map of the capital continues to show a station bearing the name of a city that no longer exists, a name that honors the pseudonym of the founder of one of the cruelest and most bloody regimes in world history.
Silvio 'encountered callgirl in Putin's bed'

Who is really running Russia?
HA HA HA Silly headline? Vlad will give you three guesses.

Putin's 'Federalism' is about Absorbing Neighbors, Not Protecting Them
Even compared to its Soviet predecessor, the federalism of the Russian Federation as Vladimir Putin understands it has little to do with providing autonomy and protection to minorities and more about creating a procedure for absorbing neighboring countries into the Russian state, according to a leading Moscow expert on federal systems.
Grave Dangers Shut Down Rights Group In Chechnya

EU Protests Over Arrest Of Bloggers In Azerbaijan
Adnan Hajizade, a video blogger and member of the "OL!" opposition movement, was arrested with activist Emin Milli at a cafe in Baku on July 8 on charges of hooliganism. Their defense team says they were beaten by two men in an unprovoked attack.
Baku Court Rejects Appeals By Jailed Bloggers

A Baku court has rejected appeals by jailed bloggers Adnan Hajizade and Emin Milli and ruled that they will remain in detention, RFE/RL's Azerbaijani Service reports. In their appeals, Hajizade and Milli's lawyers questioned the court's decision to keep the journalists in pretrial detention for two months.

Lawyer Elton Guliyev called the decision by the court "absolutely illegal" and said they will take the case to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. The two bloggers have been charged with hooliganism and face up to five years in prison if found guilty.
Militant French workers threaten to blow up their closed factories to win more compensation

The third remarkable aspect of the "pay or we explode" plan is its fatalist, even defeatist quality. A generation ago a wave of planned shutdowns and layoffs was met by the workers occupying their factories and demanding that they be kept in business. European workers of the 1970s were defending their future by defending their jobs.

This time, there is no such goal. The new tactic is not to defend their jobs but to accept the inevitable: that the jobs are going and will not be kept on life support and will not be coming back. Instead, they just want a reasonable payoff. The fundamental psychology of employee resistance and of militancy has changed.

The JLG employees were the third group of workers in France to make similar threats this month after workers from telecoms manufacturer Nortel and car parts maker New Fabris responded to their prospect of closure by setting demolition equipment around their plants. Cylinders of butane gas and oxyacetylene tanks normally used for welding equipment have been linked together by electrical cord and placed around machinery and around electrical transformers and substations.

On Wednesday morning, Sept. 17, Ben Bernanke and his lieutenants assembled. Lehman was in bankruptcy; AIG was not, only because the Fed had intervened. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was at a nearly three-year low. Yields on the safest securities of all, short-term U.S. Treasury bills, fell nearly to zero because so many investors wanted to park their money there. “It was becoming clear that the markets were going into anaphylactic shock, and that we needed to do something,” Mr. Bernanke said in an interview a few weeks later.

The Fed could no longer cope with the Great Panic by itself. The Federal Reserve chairman had suspected for months that he and then-Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson would eventually end up asking Congress to spend substantial sums of taxpayer money to rescue the banks, as every other country had been forced to do in a major banking crisis.

So far, Mr. Bernanke had deferred to Mr. Paulson on the timing of going to Congress, while Mr. Paulson had been reluctant to propose anything that Congress might, in an election year, reject. Mr. Bernanke saw this as the inevitable politics of responding to banking crises in a democracy. The most effective solution always called for lots of taxpayer money upfront. The usual political solution was to wait until the crisis was bad enough to dominate the headlines, even if that drove up the ultimate cost.
UK Gas Rises as Goldman Sachs Says Further Declines Unlikely

Most US Stocks Fall as CIT Concern Offsets Bernanke's Remarks

Bernanke Seeks to Wall Off Rate Policy From Congress

Regulatory Czar Confirmation on Hold

President Obama's nominee for "regulatory czar" has hit a new snag in his Senate confirmation process -- a "hold" by Texas Sen. John Cornyn, who's says he's not convinced that Harvard professor Cass Sunstein won't push a radical animal rights agenda, including new restrictions on agriculture and even hunting.

Senators are permitted "holds" to prevent a vote on a nominee from coming to the floor. They are often secretive and for very specific reasons.

"Sen. Cornyn finds numerous aspects of Mr. Sunstein's record troubling, specifically the fact that he wants to establish legal 'rights' for livestock, wildlife and pets, which would enable animals to file lawsuits in American courts," the Republican's spokesman, Kevin McLaughlin, said in a statement to

Nazi Uniform Storm In Romania
Radu Mazare, the mayor of Constanta, Romania’s largest Black Sea port and one of the biggest cities in the country, has caused a storm after he goose-stepped on a catwalk decked out in a Nazi army general’s uniform.

Mazare is no stranger to controversy. He has long been notorious for his penchant for yachts, beautiful women, fast cars, and odd projects.
Everything you think you know about President Barack Obama is wrong. His biological father was not the misunderstood goat herder presented in Dreams from My Father, the President’s best-selling autobiography. Obama Sr. was violent and abusive subjecting his wives and mistresses to continuous beatings. He was a polygamist who abandoned both his African and American families. He was a social malcontent who spent time in prison. He was lazy and shiftless, a dilettante who remained unable hold a job and who died in abject poverty. He was a sex offender who committed statutory rape. He was a chronic alcoholic who died while driving drunk. And, most alarming of all, he was an avowed Communist, who advocated a classless society and the distribution of wealth. Obama Sr. gave full vent to his Marxism in “Problems Facing Our Socialism,” which appeared in the July 1965 edition of East African Journal, pp. 26-33.
Employee Kills Himself Over Missing iPhone Prototype
A worker at Chinese supplier committed suicide after being accused over a missing handset. The staff member, Sun Danyong, 25, threw himself off the 12th floor of the building in southern China on July 16, the Southern Metropolitan Daily newspaper reported.
DOE Hands Out $57M for Smart Grid Demos

Raytheon has successful AEHF testing
The U.S. Army and Raytheon announced the successful testing of a satellite communications production terminal technology. U.S. company Raytheon says the first Advanced Extremely High Frequency satellite communications production terminals have successfully completed testing.
Gates to Expand US Army by Adding 22,000 New Troops

Senate votes to stop making more F-22 Raptor fighter jets
The administration plans to shift funding to the single-engine F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, which also would be available to the Navy and Marine Corps and which Gates said would be superior to the F-22s in combat. The Pentagon also has proposed adding 22,000 troops to the Army.
Senate to vote on concealed weapons measure
Gun rights advocates sought to show their political muscle again Wednesday with a Senate vote giving people with concealed weapons permits in one state permission to carry their hidden weapons into other states with similar gun laws.Under an agreement of Senate leaders, 60 votes were needed to pass the measure, an amendment to a defense spending bill, and the outcome was uncertain.

But the gun rights lobby, putting together Republicans and pro-gun Democrats from rural states, has a strong winning record in recent years.Backers, led by Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., say truckers and others with concealed weapons permits should be able to protect themselves when they cross into other states. Opponents say the measure would force states with strict procedures for getting permits to accept permits from states with more lax laws.
Medicine in Germany: 1918-1945

Marc S. Micozzi, M.D., Ph.D., a physician and anthropologist, directs the National Museum of Health and Medicine in Washington, D.C., which recently brought from Berlin the exhibition, “The Value of the Human Being: Medicine in Germany 1918-1945,” curated by Christian Pross and Götz Aly.

Today we are concerned about issues such as doctor-assisted suicide, abortion, the use of fetal tissue, genetic screening, birth control and sterilization, health-care rationing and the ethics of medical research on animals and humans. These subjects are major challenges in both ethics and economics at the end of the twentieth century. But at the beginning of the twentieth century the desire to create a more scientific medical practice and research had already raised the issues of euthanasia, eugenics, and medical experimentation on human subjects. In addition, the increasing involvement of the German government in medical care and funding medical research established the government-medical complex that the National Socialists later used to execute their extermination policies.

The German social insurance and health care system began in the 1880s under Bismarck. Ironically, it was part of Bismarck’s “anti-socialist” legislation, adopted under the theory that a little socialism would prevent the rise of a more virulent socialism.

Socialized health care, an imminent disaster
Most people also don’t realize that if the government is administering health care the right to sue for malpractice likely goes away, just like in the military health care system. If a military doctor misdiagnoses a patient who dies as a result, that service member has no recourse.
Glaxo Expects Further Swine Flu Vaccine Orders

New standards for "measuring gender"

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee’s health care legislation will give the Health and Human Services secretary the authority to develop “standards of measuring gender” -- as opposed to using the traditional "male" and "female" categories -- in a database of all who apply or participate in government-run or government-supported health care plans.

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is required by the proposed law -- The Affordable Health Choices Act,which was voted out of committee on July 15 -- to create a database within one year of the law’s enactment that will include detailed information about those who sign up for government-run or supported health care programs, including their race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, language and disabilities.

The proposed law states that the database can use the Office of Management and Budget “standards for race and ethnicity measures.”
Business Models in Antiquity
Karl Moore, a business professor at McGill University, and David Lewis, a historian, look at ancient international business in "The Origins of Globalization." In the first of a two-part series, they describe the economies of Assyria, the Phoenicians, Greece and Rome -- and how much they valued merchants.
Water experts: Uranium Mining near Grand Canyon is risky

World's largest telescope to be built in Hawaii

Is Yellowstone's volcano ready to explode?

Tourists Banned As Philippine Volcano Shakes

Earthquake prediction in Balkans closer to reality
While the latest satellite-assisted experiments into earthquake prediction are promising, research in the field is still very embryonic. NATO's Science for Peace and Security Programme (SPS) is involved in that research in Southeastern Europe, where it is funding an effort that will, according to Project Director Branislav Glavatovic, "provide an important step towards preparedness and prevention activities in disaster management in the Western Balkans"
Longest eclipse passes across Asia

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