And that is all.

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Friday, July 17, 2009

Floatin' Powa News Service: What The Fractal?

FRAC⋅TAL – noun, Mathematics, Physics.
A geometrical or physical structure having an irregular or fragmented shape at all scales of measurement between a greatest and smallest scale such that certain mathematical or physical properties of the structure, as the perimeter of a curve or the flow rate in a porous medium, behave as if the dimensions of the structure (fractal dimensions) are greater than the spatial dimensions. A geometric pattern that is repeated at ever smaller scales to produce irregular shapes and surfaces that cannot be represented by classical geometry. Fractals are used especially in computer modeling of irregular patterns and structures in nature. [French, from Latin fractus, past participle of frangere, to break; see fraction.] (see fractus ) a term introduced by French mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot (born 1924) in 1975

Al-Jazeera closed in West Bank
The Palestinian Authority has closed down the West Bank offices of Arabic satellite news channel al-Jazeera.The self-rule body said al-Jazeera promoted a negative view of its work and that the coverage is biased. It comes a day after a guest on the station accused Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas of collaborating with Israel to have Yasser Arafat killed. The channel - based in Doha - said it was "stunned" by the Palestinian Authority's decision.
Hamas slams PNA decision to suspend al-Jazeera office in West Bank

Obama to demand binding timetable for Israel-PA talks
Far as I am concerned he may demand in one hand and shit in the other and see which gets filled first.
U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to announce a diplomatic plan soon for renewal of the Middle East peace process.
LOL! So, is it a "diplomatic plan" or a "demand"?
Make up your minds or STFU already, OK?

Abbas: PA wants serious talks but will insist on Jerusalem, refugees
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday said that while his government is interested in serious negotiations with Israel, he will insist that the status of Jerusalem and the Palestinian refugees with be included in any agreement, the WAFA news agency reported. "We support serious negotiations; we know that they will be hard and complicated. We will need your support, yet, flexibility on our side never means concession of our national principles," Abbas was quoted as saying in a speech before the Non-Aligned Movement's 15th summit, held in Sharm e-Sheikh, Egypt. "There will be no solution without Jerusalem, refugees and all final status issues," he reportedly stressed.
What Palestinians really think about Obama
Gazans of all stripes, both decades-long friends of mine and new contacts, are intimately aware of President Obama's Cairo speech last month, which many see as a breathtaking change from Bush administration policy. But, especially after years cut off from contact with Americans by US policy to isolate Hamas, they have little grasp of US culture – or of the realities facing an American president seeking to take up their cause.

A delegation of Hamassholes just got back from Geneva you know.... because they are just so damn peaceful!
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights on Wednesday condemned the Hamas rulers of Gaza for storming a wedding party after guests raised a portrait of a slain activist from the rival Fatah movement.

"The police attacked the party, opened fire and violently beat participants" from the al-Madhun clan in the northern town of Beit Lahiya on Tuesday, lightly wounding four people, including two women, it said in a statement.

Swiss defend Hamas visa against Israeli protest
Now this defense I gotta hear:
"Hamas is an important political actor and must not be left out in discussions over a solution to the Middle East conflict," Calmy-Rey told public radio on Wednesday.She said Switzerland, unlike the European Union, did not consider Hamas a "terrorist organisation", but condemned any terrorist activities.
Whatta loada shit.

Hamas: Israel corrupting Gazans by distributing "sex chewing gum"
Hamas is an important political actor!
~ Switzerland

Israel Foreign Ministry Slams Switzerland Over Hamas Meeting

Ex-U.S. Diplomat Talks With Hamas
To Hamas officials Bassem Naim and Mahmoud al-Zahar, a recent meeting in Switzerland with a former senior U.S. diplomat represented an opening in relations with the Obama administration, and a path to easing the Islamist group's isolation.

"I hope it will be the beginning of addressing some of the mistakes of the last three years," Naim said of his talks with Thomas R. Pickering, a former undersecretary of state and U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. "This was a first meeting to investigate the positions in general terms of both parties without any commitment on any side."

U.S. officials say they see the previously undisclosed June meeting between Pickering and the two senior Hamas officials differently. They said Pickering had not been asked to approach Hamas and had no official standing; U.S. officials learned of the meeting only afterward. Policy toward the Islamist group, they said, remains what it was under President George W. Bush: that Hamas is a terrorist organization with which the United States will not even sanction a meeting.

Secretary Clinton Answers Questions After Foreign Policy Address
MR. HAASS: You mentioned in your speech the potential role of the Palestinian Authority in that context. You did not mention specifically Hamas. Do you see any conceivable situation in which Hamas could play a role in the peace process?

Secretary Clinton: Well, right now, we are firmly committed to the Quartet principles. And we have made it clear, both publicly and privately, through all kinds of pronouncements, that we would expect Hamas to recognize Israel and renounce violence and agree to abide by prior agreements. And we've been very pleased that the Quartet members - the EU, Russia, the UN - have stood very firm with us on that.
Israel tells US envoy firm on terms for Syria talks
Israel played down prospects for renewed peace negotiations with Syria on Wednesday after hosting a top adviser to U.S. Middle East envoy George Mitchell.

Fred Hoff met several Israeli officials during a four-day visit that local media speculated could be part of the Obama administration's bid to explore fresh engagement with Damascus. The Israelis repeated their long-standing offer to hold direct talks with Syria if it distances itself from Iran and armed Islamist groups arrayed against the Jewish state in Lebanon and the Palestinian territories.

"These things have to end if, indeed, Syria is seeking peace," Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon, who met Hoff, told Israel Radio when asked about what had been discussed.
Hold on here comes the headline whiplash:
Ayalon to US envoy: Israel ready for direct talks with Syria
Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon met Wednesday with Fred Hoff, assistant to US special envoy to the Middle East George Mitchell, and said, "Israel is prepared for direct negotiations with Syria, but only with no preconditions."
US envoy to visit Syria, meet with Syrian FM
US envoy Fred Hoff is slated to arrive Wednesday in Damascus. London-based newspaper al-Hayyat reported that Hoff is scheduled to me with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem on Thursday in order to discuss US-Syrian relations and the Middle East peace process. According to estimates, US special envoy to the Middle East George Mitchell is expected to come to the region soon and to visit a number of Arab states, including Syria.
Turkey, Syria reach gas deal

Israel revives bill that could hamper Golan pullout
Like anyone has agreed to pull out?
Fuck you, headline.
An Israeli cabinet panel has endorsed a bill that would require parliamentary approval or a national referendum before any pullout from occupied Syrian territory, an official said on Tuesday. The decision could delay any withdrawal as part of a peace agreement. Under current law Israeli governments have sole power to decide the terms of any peace treaty.

It was made by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's ministerial law committee on Sunday, the day a U.S. envoy arrived in the region with the reported aim of seeking to restart Israeli-Syrian talks.
10 hurt as Jerusalem haredim resume riots over mother's arrest
Not related to the parking lot jihad:
Haredi protests on the streets of Jerusalem over the arrest of a pregnant woman suspected of abusing her three-year-old son escalated throughout Thursday, culminating in late-night riots in which hundreds clashed with police on Jerusalem's main north-south Road One.

Commentary: West stares into Afghan abyss
The level of interconnection is best exemplified by the fact that Osama Bin Laden's son was married to Mullah Omar's daughter in the sort of political match which is meant to forge a blood kinship between the two. The main difference between the two seems to be in the scope of their objectives: while the Taliban is content with imposing its religious beliefs system on Afghanistan, al Qaeda has a global agenda of building a new Caliphate.
Al Qaeda Still Has A Plan
July 15, 2009: Al Qaeda has a plan, and it was first published, four years ago, in a book (Al-Zarqawi: al Qaeda's Second Generation) by Jordanian journalist, Fouad Hussein. Several al Qaeda leaders were interviewed for the book, including al Qaeda’s man in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. The current version of the plan has been showing up on Islamic radical websites since late last year.

The basic al Qaeda plan lays out a very straightforward strategy for world conquest.

Actually, it sounds a lot like what the Nazis and communists had in mind last century. The only difference is that, while the Nazis killed you for who you were, and the communists killed you for what you believed, al Qaeda kills you for not being Moslem. No matter which zealot gets you, you're still dead.
UN Security Council Panel to Vet All Entries on Terrorism List
A Security Council committee will vet all 513 entries on its sanctions list for Al Qaeda and the Taliban within a year, said Thomas Mayr-Harting, the Austrian ambassador and chairman of the committee. About 38 people on the list have been reported dead, and a lack of crucial information, like birth dates and surnames, on a third of the entries renders them useless for border checks and other controls, he said. The panel hopes to devise an appeals process to allow for people to challenge inclusion on the list, which has been the subject of complaints and about 30 court cases.
The United Nations Security Council Membership 2009/2010:
The Council is composed of five permanent members: China, France, Russian Federation, the United Kingdom and the United States & ten non-permament members (with year of term's end): Austria (2010) Japan (2010) Uganda (2010) Burkina Faso (2009) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya (2009) Viet Nam (2009) Costa Rica (2009) Mexico (2010) Croatia (2009) Turkey (2010)
Libyan Arab Jamahiriya? WTF is that?
Ahhh it is Libya's FULL NAME:
Libya: Officially, the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya ( الجماهيرية العربية الليبية الشعبية الإشتراكية العظمى
OK so WTF is a Burkina Faso?
Burkina Faso (pronounced /bərˌkiːnə ˈfɑːsoʊ/ burr-KEE-nə FAH-soh; French: [byʁkina faso]), also known by its short-form name Burkina, is a landlocked nation in West Africa. It is surrounded by six countries: Mali to the north, Niger to the east, Benin to the south east, Togo and Ghana to the south, and Côte d'Ivoire to the south west. Its size is 274,000 km² with an estimated population of more than 13,200,000.

Formerly called the Republic of Upper Volta, it was renamed on August 4, 1984, by President Thomas Sankara to mean "the land of upright people" in Moré and Dioula, the major native languages of the country. Literally, "Burkina" may be translated, "men of integrity," from the Moré language, and "Faso" means "father's house" in Dioula. The inhabitants of Burkina Faso are known as Burkinabè (pronounced /bərˈkiːnəbeɪ/ burr-KEE-nə-bay).
Persecution of Christians Increasing in Iraq
On Sunday, July 12, Aziz Rozko Hanna, an Iraqi Christian who was serving as director of the Department of Financial Control of the city of Kirkuk, was driving with his daughter in Dumiz, a Christian neighborhood in Kirkuk, when he was stopped, pulled from his car, and shot dead in front of his daughter.

On the same day, five churches in Baghdad were bombed, wounding eight civilians. And all this has come after persecution and harassment that has led over half of the Christians in Iraq to leave the country in the last few years. The situation has gotten so bad that the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Baghdad, Jean Benjamin Sleiman, said in May: “I fear the extinction of Christianity in Iraq and the Middle East.”
"New world order' urged at NAM meet
More than 50 heads of state from the developing world met yesterday in Egypt to tackle the fallout from the global economic meltdown, with calls for a “new world order” to prevent a repeat of the crisis.

Cuban President Raul Castro said in a speech at the opening session of the Non-Aligned Movement summit that the financial crisis had hit developing nations the hardest. “Every country in the world must seek just solutions to the global economic crisis,” Castro told the 118-member body at the gathering in the Red Sea resort of Sharm El Sheikh.

“We call for a new monetary and economic world order... we must restructure the world financial system to take into consideration the needs of developing countries.”
Global power dynamics also need to be addressed, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi said, demanding a restructuring of the UN Security Council which he branded a form of terrorism “monopolised by a few countries that are permanent members.”
“This represents a danger toward international peace. We have suffered all sorts of harm from the Security Council, it has become a sword over our necks,” he said. “The Security Council is terrorism.”

Gaddafi said he wanted to correct the imbalance at the Security Council, demanding a permanent seat for the 53-member African Union, which he chairs.
Clinton: Deplores Iran's actions but offers to talk
That strange sound you hear is me cackling like a maniac

...And if Iran Doesn't Want to Talk?

But this question misses the point. It is a bit like me wondering whether I should invite Angelina Jolie over for dinner: The question isn’t really whether I should ask, but how on earth I would get her show up. When it comes to Iran, the question isn’t so much whether to engage, but how to get Iran’s leaders to want to engage earnestly with us.
Ahmadinejad: Iran will "bring down" Western foes

Israeli warships rehearse for Iran attack in Red Sea

Report: Iran's nuclear chief resigns
The commander of Iran's nuclear program for more than a decade has resigned, Iran Student News Agency reported Thursday. Reza Aghazadeh has largely stayed out of politics. Reza Aghazadeh told ISNA that he submitted his resignation 20 days ago. He said President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has now accepted it. Aghazadeh, who gave no reason for his decision, was promoted to Iran's vice president of atomic energy in 1997 under reformist President Mohammad Khatami.
Iran's nuclear chief resigns - links to Mousavi cited

Gadhafi: Iran's nuclear program to be supported
Islam's most famous Tranny speaks:
Gadhafi was addressing Wednesday's opening session of a summit of the Non-Aligned Movement at the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik. The 118-nation group includes Iran.He said it is "unjust" to stop Iran from enriching uranium for peaceful purposes, but that it must not be allowed to develop nuclear weapons.

Plane crashes in northwest Iran; 168 people on board, all feared dead

IRAN: Slain protester's mother speaks out to Mousavi and wife

Mousavi: Protesters' blood will not go in vain
Yeah yeah sure. I believe you. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. Everything is a photo op for these people. No his blood does not go in vain since you get to appropriate it toward your own agenda now, nu?
Mousavi made the remark Tuesday night when he and his wife visited the family of Sohrab Aarabi, 19, who disappeared during a June 15 protest. The family has been told he had been shot dead. He was buried Monday.
SOCIALIST WORKER ONLINE: The left's confusion on Iran
In every communist publication I peruse there are pieces by American & Canadian University professors. If I were you I would not even send my kids to college today. No way. Not unless you want to get back a mini-Marxist for all your hard earned money.
Saeed Rahnema, a professor at York University in Canada, argues that some parts of the left are turning reality on its head in their analysis of the uprising in Iran.
Supreme leader Khamenei diminished in Iranians' eyes
So does he get demoted to "Maybe Not So Supreme Leader" now?

North Korea: No disarmament talks
Do you see that Chinese hand up Kim Jong's ass or is it just me?

China's Strategic Challenges Go Well Beyond the Uighurs
Though officially designated the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, the region is not autonomous and, as time passes, less Uighur. Beijing dominates provincial politics, which is one reason the region's 9 million Uighurs chafe. For the Turkic and predominantly Sunni Muslim Uighurs, Beijing's policy of "Sinicization" is a key source of friction. The policy promotes the centralization of Chinese state authority on China's periphery, in the "delicate" border areas that make Beijing very nervous.

The migration of ethnic Han Chinese is another facet. The Han and Han sub-groups are the dominant ethnic group in China, and to ethnic Uighur activists, the slow but massive Han migration into Xinjiang amounts to cultural and ethnic drowning, and eventual Uighur assimilation as the Han population swells.

The Tibetans make the same accusation for the same reasons. Tibetans have rioted -- in 2008, 200 Tibetans died in a Beijing-ordered crackdown.
Blood and Oil in Central Asia
In the past month, two seemingly unrelated events have turned Central Asia into a potential flashpoint: an aggressively expanding North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and a nascent strategic alliance between Russia and China. At stake is nothing less than who holds the future high ground in the competition for the world's energy resources.
China Assoc Wants Government To Limit Shell Coal Tech Buys
The China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Association has asked the central government to limit the purchases of Royal Dutch Shell PLC's (RDSA) "still immature" coal gasification technology, the CPCIA-run National Petroleum and Chemical Net said on its Web site Wednesday.
PetroChina adds refining facilities for Russian oil

China ups energy clout in Central Asia - US envoy

Russian human rights activist kidnapped, killed
One more case of Sudden Putin Death Syndrome ~
Natalya Estemirova, of the Russian human rights group Memorial, was kidnapped outside her home in Grozny, Chechnya, Oleg Orlov said, citing eyewitness reports. She was later found dead in the neighboring Russian republic of Ingushetia, said Orlov, the head of the organization's Moscow office.

Estemirova was a leading human rights activist in the North Caucasus area who had been openly criticizing Chechnya's authoritarian president, Ramzan Kadyrov, and his methods. She shouted that she was being kidnapped as she was forced into a white Lada automobile that had stopped on the road in front of her house around 8:30 a.m. (12:30 a.m. ET), Orlov said. An unidentified man grabbed her and shoved her into the car, he told CNN. "This is a kidnapping," she yelled, he said.
Russia Launches Another ICBM
A submarine fired a Sineva missile, a liquid-fuel projectile capable of delivering four to 10 nuclear warheads to a target. Another Sineva was fired on Monday from a Delta IV class submarine from the Northern Fleet.
Azerbaijan-Gazprom agreement puts Nabucco in jeopardy
HA HA HA! Nabucco my tight KGB ass!
~ Vlad

Russia's Ex-Soviet Neighbors To Snub Summit - Kremlin
Russia will host an informal summit of ex-Soviet nations this week but several leaders will snub the event as Moscow's ties with its neighbors grow more fraught, a Kremlin official said Wednesday.

At least four leaders - Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko, Uzbekistan's Islam Karimov, Turkmenistan's Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov and Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko - will be no-shows at a horse race the Kremlin is hosting in lieu of a formal summit, said Kremlin aide Sergei Prikhodko.

The horse race at Moscow's Central Hippodrome on Saturday is an annual tradition that in the past has been attended by leaders of the Commonwealth of Independent States, a post-Soviet grouping. "As per tradition we've sent out invitations to all the CIS leaders with the exception of Georgia, of course," Prikhodko, the top foreign policy aide to President Dmitry Medvedev, told reporters in the Kremlin. "Some are busy," Prikhodko said, while adding that Moscow won't overreact. "We are not dramatizing and not getting upset."

The CIS comprises all the former Soviet republics with the exception of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, as well as Georgia, which announced its withdrawal following its war with Russia last August. Uzbekistan's Karimov said he couldn't attend, citing scheduling conflicts, said Prikhodko.
Medvedev stresses Islam's importance for Russia
Russia's religious life is a multi-confessional one and Islam is a faith with a vast influence. So President Dmitry Medvedev said during a meeting with leaders of Russian Muslim organizations.
Weapon Billed to Save Russia's Military Is in Need of Rescue
It was intended to be a symbol of Russia’s post-Soviet military might. The nuclear-armed Bulava missile would be unlike any weapon in the world in its speed, accuracy and ability to defeat any defense the West might throw up, Russian officials claimed, helping to propel the country’s armed forces into the 21st century.

Today, however, the Bulava is having trouble just propelling itself. A test flight in December went wildly off course. So did a string of launchings in 2006 and 2007. Only half the tests since 2003 have been even partly successful.Now, sometime this month, another test is scheduled, perhaps the most important yet. One more failure would endanger the project, which is facing mounting criticism from military and security experts, and embarrass Russia’s leaders, who have staked their country’s prestige in part on its success.
Russian bikers 'invade' Crimea - with Putin's blessing
Vladimir's Angels!
"Biker’s rally in Crimea seen off by a leather-jacketed Putin. Russian bikers stage their [motorcycle] rally in Sevastopol.

Russian bikers held the main event of the Russian motorcycle world calendar, their 13th [annual] biker show, for the first time, in Crimea. For many years, with support of the authorities and hundreds admirers, its home had been in the Kaliningrad region of Russia where it had become a huge event. This year it was decided to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the liberation of Sevastopol and stage it in Crimea, where up to about 7 thousand bikers took part.

Besides Ukrainians, and organizers of the event - Russians, children from many countries also participated. From Russia they brought a flag which was handed to them by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

In general the dominant theme of the rally was ideological. Appeals for unity of all Slavs were constantly aired, including during a performance on stage by well-known Russian ’rocker’ Konstantin Kintchev.

The leader of one of Russian biker gangs, Andrey Septenok, nicknamed Hans, shared his impressions of the event with ’Segodnya’. "We left Moscow on July7th. Putin himself came to the biker centre to see us off. He appeared in a leather jacket and ’shades’. He wrote a card of greeting and presented us with a flag. It lifted everyone’s spirits! We travelled for three days to Sevastopol - through Kursk, Belgorod, Zaporozhye arriving on the night of the 10th in Sevastopol.
Oligarch pays for party that enraged Putin
Farhad, a 37-year-old migrant labourer from Tajikistan, has little in common with Russia's rich. Sporting an Adidas tracksuit, squatting with a beer on a bench outside the closed and shuttered Cherkizovsky market, he couldn't be further away from the flashy cars, luxury villas and private jets of Russia's oligarch class. But bizarrely, Farhad, along with about 100,000 traders who lost their jobs when the market in Moscow was closed down two weeks ago, may have been made unemployed as a result of the oligarchic party of parties: a tasteless show of wealth that apparently infuriated the Russian Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin.
Arkansas minister gets a taste of Tajikistan

Anti-Taliban fight could spill over into Tajikistan
More and more reports are coming in that Taliban fighters are seeking sanctuary in Tajikistan fleeing offensives in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Official sources have denied such reports but gun battles are increasing along the border with Afghanistan.
Kazakhstan Building Railroad to Persian Gulf
Astana has begun the construction of part of a tripartite railroad linking landlocked Central Asian states of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan with Iran and the Persian Gulf.

Kazakhstan Bankers 'Must Be Punished' for Devaluation 'Lies'

Repressive Kazakh Media Law Angers Rights Groups
Human Rights Watch and the Committee to Protect Journalists said a bill signed into law by President Nursultan Nazarbayev at the weekend was incompatible with Kazakhstan's upcoming chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The law, drafted by Kazakhstan's communications agency, allows the shutting down of a Web site for three months if it is deemed to have intentionally published illegal information.

"The law creates a level playing field for the Internet in Kazakhstan to protect the participants in this business," said the deputy head of the agency, Batyr Makhanbetazhiyev. He said the law was aimed at cracking down on material such as pornography on the Internet. But the rights groups said the move was aimed at further restricting freedom of expression in the country.
Alliance chairman leaves Kazakhstan
The Gold Man quit Kazakhstan a few weeks back if you recall.
The chairman of Alliance Bank, Margulan Seisembayev, has reportedly left Kazakhstan, Interfax said on Wednesday citing the financial police.

The financial police claims it is not investigating Seisembayev or other shareholders of Alliance. “At this moment, there are no criminal cases against the shareholders of Alliance Bank,” financial police representative Murat Zhumanbay said. “Why he fled the country - I do not know.”

Georgian Opposition Requests Meeting with Biden
U.S. Vice-President Joseph Biden's imminent visit to Georgia will be watched for indications of an American strategic re-engagement with the Black Sea-South Caucasus region. The Obama administration has not yet defined its policy in this regard and the Vice-President cannot be expected to announce any major regional initiatives during his visit. Nevertheless, the wider Black Sea region -including Ukraine, Biden's other destination on this visit-urgently awaits a reversal of the Bush administration's 2007-08 strategic disengagement from this region.
Turkmenistan creates vast lake in the desert
Turkmenistan has begun channeling water across hundreds of miles to create a lake in the heart of a barren desert, state media reported Thursday, in a Soviet-style engineering feat that some experts fear could unleash an environmental catastrophe.

Turkmen engineers are pumping in run-off water through a network of canals from irrigated cotton fields across the country, filling up the natural Karashor depression in remote northern Turkmenistan to create Golden Age Lake and, they say, bring life to the searing Karakum Desert.

At an opening ceremony Wednesday, President Gurbanguli Berdymukhamedov used a spade to dig a breach allowing the flow of water from a tributary canal. He declared the lake would make the desert bloom.

"We have brought new life to these once-lifeless sands. I am convinced that our great deeds will be recalled with glory," he said in comments published in the state-run Neutral Turkmenistan newspaper.

A Russian expert working at the Turkmen Oil and Gas Institute in Ashgabat has received an eight-year sentence for alleged abuse of office.Vladimir Sibirev was initially suspected of "treason and espionage" but prosecutors later reduced the charges.

According to information gathered by an activist group, the Russian Community in Turkmenistan, Sibirev has insider knowledge of the "true state of Turkmenistan’s oil and gas reserves" and his imprisonment is a politically motivated act to cover up over-optimistic exploration results.

A statement issued by the group and distributed via the opposition website on July 14 called on Turkmen authorities to review the verdict against Sibirev. "Such actions are contrary to the clear policy of democratization and openness in the world [as] proclaimed by the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov," the statement said.

President of Romania to pay official visit to Turkmenistan
Romania can teach all the Stans a thing or three about totalitarian governing...

Turkmenistan’s former military attaché in Washington has been appointed the Central Asian nation’s deputy defense minister. Lt. Col. Begench Gundogdyev’s duties will cover "procurement and rear services," the semi-official reported on July 15. In such a role, Gundogdyev would likely be a key point of contact for US officials in coordinating the transit of supplies bound for Afghanistan. Dovranberdi Atdanov was sacked from the position to make way for Gundogdyev on the grounds he had "failed to perform his duties," the report added.
President of Turkmenistan Chats up Medvedev:
Invites him to "politically symbolic" road rally:
Russian news agency RIA Novosti informs that during the phone conversation that took place on 30th June, the President of Turkmenistan, Gurbanguly Berdymuhamedov, invited the President of the Russian Federation, Mr. Dmitry Medvedev to make a visit to Turkmenistan the day of arrival in Ashgabat of the international off road rally raid SILK WAY 2009.

The presidents of Turkmenistan and Russia have remarked that the significance of this automotive competition surpasses the one of a mere sporting event. According to their common opinion, the itinerary of the race Kazan - Ashgabat, which will take place 5-13th September 2009, is a symbol of continuity of the ties of friendship, which have united the peoples of Turkmenistan, Russia and Kazakhstan from the earliest times.
Turkmenistan to increase control over implementation of major investment programmes
Sounds familiar!


Gambling In Turkmenistan

Outsider recently sent me a news link discussing Turkmenistan's plan to open a Las Vegas/Dubai-esque casino beach resort near the port town of Turkmenbashi. Coincidentally, Putin just shut down all Russian casinos and banished them to The Sticks, i.e. Kaliningrad, Azov, Altai, and the North Korean border.

Turkmenistan is a closed and charmingly repressive society. Entry for foreigners is almost impossible. A 2005 film, put out by Journeyman Pictures, fantastically captures the late ruler of Turkmenistan, Saparmurat Niyazov.

The narcissism and sycophancy are beyond belief.
Ohhhh we can believe it here, we have seen that shit before, tovarich!

Five billion dollars for the Las Vegas of the Caspian Sea
In Turkmenbashi on the Caspian Sea, oasis of Avaz is being built: four monumental hotel, villas, casinos, an island and an artificial ski resort, an international airport. The project is funded by proceeds from the sale of gas. But the country's average annual salary is 6,800 dollars and unemployment is at 60%.
Cotton, Child Labor & Instability in Uzbekistan
The Economist has a good analysis of the suicide attacks that took place at the end of May in Uzbekistan’s Fergana Valley, one of the heaviest cotton-growing areas. Discussing the state’s land-redistribution campaign that came at the end of the 2008 harvest, the piece notes:
Ostensibly to rationalise agricultural production, Mr. Karimov decreed in October that landholdings should be consolidated. This gave local governors, the hakims, who often rule with an iron fist–a pretext to seize land and pass it on to cronies or those wealthy enough to offer bribes…This land grab left many farmers landless, jobless and desperately poor. Some have gone back to work what was once their land. Yet there was already a vast surplus of workers, because of a bulge in the working-age population…If Islamist extremists are re-grouping in the Fergana Valeey, they have plenty of discontent to prey on.
Third Human Rights Forum unfolds in Kyrgyzstan
The participants will discuss international experience of National preventive mechanism against torture, introduction of human rights approach to the activity of state agencies and also the role of local and civilian sector in human rights protection. Ombudsmen will also consider protection of migrants from countries-participants,” the official said.
Russian President to take working trip to Kyrgyzstan
The leader of Russia will take a working trip to Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan at the end of July. Medvedev will supposedly head for Dushanbe and later on for Bishkek on July 30 where he will take part in an informal summit of the Collective Security Treaty Organization to run at the Issyk-Kul Lake. The informal summit will be held at the initiative of Kyrgyzstan, the executive office of Kurmanbek Bakiev informed the news agency According to ITAR-TASS, “the summit will supposedly discuss situation in Afghanistan, but as usual hosts of such events make suggestions for an agenda.”

VIDEO: The WSJ on the Gold Men:
Talking Goldman earnings, "Goldman-envy-itis" and making a wager about compensation at Goldman competitor Morgan Stanley. This would not have been possible without Goldmen such as Hank Paulson and Tim Geithner holding back the competition and letting them fail (Lehman, Bear Sterns) and ensuring that their bets through AIG did not fail. A criminal case should be opened up against ex-Goldmen as well as those currently perversely profiting at Goldman Sachs.
Goldman Sachs sells $1 billion in debt

The return of the $773,000 paycheck
Return to ME sometime, will ya?

Goldman to rise another 30%

Goldman's not acting like a bank ... yet

Goldman's Gain, America's Risk

Jeffrey A. Miron, an economist at Harvard, says this situation shows why governments should not be in the bailout business.
A Goldman Sachs stunner: Are you outraged?
Am I outraged?
Does a bear shit in the woods?
Does the Pope pretend to be Catholic?

Banking In Secret: Citigroup & Bank Of America Behind Closed Doors
The Wall Street Journal has two troubling reports. The first is that Bank of America (BAC) operating under an agreement with the government which the paper describes as “a secret regulatory sanction.” Part of this sanction relates to how the firm will set up its board.

The other report is that Citigroup (C) and the FDIC are ”entering into a so-called memorandum of understanding.” This deal would allow the FDIC some influence in how the firm restructures.

The trouble with these relationships is that Citi and B of A are public companies. Shareholders have never been made aware of these agreements between the firms and the government.
Barclays names ex-Goldman banker to board

A partnership or corporation under "unusual and exigent circumstances"
The Obama Administration introduced a white paper, Financial Regulatory Reform – A New Foundation: Rebuilding Financial Supervision and Regulation, 1 (the White Paper) on June 17, 2009, proposing significant and comprehensive regulatory reform in response to what the White Paper calls the "most severe financial crisis since the Great Depression."
Financial oversight must include panel of federal and state regulators

Geithner says dollar to remain key reserve currency
KEY is not the same as THE, nu?

NYT: Live-Blogging Czar Paulson on Capitol Hill
Former Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. testified before Congress on Thursday about his role in persuading Bank of America to complete its acquisition of Merrill Lynch. Zachery Kouwe of The New York Times live-blogged the hearing on DealBook, with the most recent posts at the top.
General Motors unveiled plans on Wednesday to spend about $1 billion in Brazil through 2012
So cars we would have made here that employed Americans will now get made in Brazil and employ Brazilians instead. BRICS AKBAR my tovariches! develop a new family of vehicles for South America, a priority market for the U.S. automaker as it looks to rebound from bankruptcy protection. GM plans to invest the bulk of the money at its Gravatai factory in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul, which it will expand to increase production capacity, Jaime Ardila, GM's chief executive for Brazil and the Mercosur region of South America, said in a statement. The investment, which in Brazilian currency amounts to 2 billion reais ($1.02 billion USD), is part of a $2.5 billion spending plan that began in 2007 and runs through 2012 in the Mercosur region that includes Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay.
Oil rises above $61 after US government reports supply of crude oil "Less than expected"

Gold soars to two-week high on weak dollar, surging oil

Crude oil's rollercoaster prices

Why Crude Will Reach $100/Barrel
Oh now they are going way beyond the Gold Man / GAZPROM mandated $85 from June!

Gold Man Predicts $85

GAZPROM Predicts $85

European governments enhance powers to take over failing banks

Deutsche Bank Set For Success

Ahli United Bank sponsors Bahrain's reception at joint IMF/ World Bank meeting
Ahli United Bank has confirmed its sponsorship of the Bahrain banks' reception taking place in Istanbul, Turkey during the IMF/ World Bank meetings to be held on October 6-7, 2009. The reception which is hosted by the Bahrain Association of Banks aims at showcasing the progress and developments of Bahrain's banking sector to some 13,000 delegates who are expected to attend the meetings this year.

The joint IMF/World Bank meetings each year brings together central bankers, ministers of finance and development, banking and private sector executives and academics to discuss issues of global concern. Bahrain's delegation to this year's meetings in Istanbul will be led by the Minister of Finance and the Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain.
Chindonesia: investors' hot prospect

Nigeria: MEND Spurns Amnesty, Bombs Agip, Chevron Facilities

Court records detail Minnesota Somalis' path to terrorism
First-ever details of Minnesota men training with terrorists in Somalia -- learning to fire weapons, building training camps -- came to light in court documents released Tuesday.
Iraq trade union threatens to block foreign oil field work

US hopes to unveil defense, nuclear deals in India
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton hopes to unveil agreements that would help U.S. firms sell sophisticated arms and nuclear power plants to India when she visits next week, a U.S. official said on Wednesday.

One would be an "end-use monitoring" agreement under which the United States would have the right to make sure U.S. arms sold to India are used for their intended purpose and that the technology does not leak to third countries.

Under U.S. law, such a pact is necessary for U.S. firms to bid on India's plan to buy 126 multi-role fighters, which would be one of the largest arms deals in the world and could be a boon to Lockheed Martin Corp and Boeing Co.

India Picks U.S. Nuclear Plant Sites

Ethnic Cleansing of Minorities in Bangladesh
Government of Bangladesh has published many Census documents. In 1941; 28.3 percent of the total population was minorities. Out of this, of Hindu was 11.88 million, while 588 thousand was other religious and ethnic minorities, like Buddhist, Christian and animist. As per 1991 Census; the Muslim majority increased 219.5 percent while the Hindu community increased by 4.5 percent. If usual increase rate prevailed, the number of the Hindu community would have been 32.5 million in 1991, but the actual figure is 12.5 million. It means twenty million Hindu souls are missing. (Samad, 1998). Is the Bangladeshi Government ready to give a satisfactory explanation, how those twenty million souls had vanished in fifty years? Did they vanish into thin air like a Houdini magic?
'Morally dangerous' Bruno banned in Ukraine

Obama Claims Immunity, As New Spy Case Takes Center Stage
RE: Jewel vs NSA

In court filings, the administration says the suit (.pdf) “would require or risk the disclosure of information that is properly subject to the state secrets privilege and related statutory privileges.” The administration claims it’s shielded by sovereign immunity, in addition to citing the controversial state secrets privilege.

All the while, the EFF maintains the dragnet surveillance (.pdf) continues unabated under Obama.

“Using this shadow network of surveillance devices, defendants have acquired and continue to acquire the content of a significant portion of the phone calls, e-mails, instant messages, text messages, web communications and other communications, both international and domestic, of practically every American who uses the phone system or the internet,” the EFF wrote in its lawsuit.

The civil liberties group told Judge Walker the spying is as an “unprecedented, suspicionless general search through the nation’s communications.”

Obama sets markers on defense spending
RAYTHEON to the rescue...
The White House this morning issued its official position on a Pentagon funding bill that is its first showdown with Congress on fixing what it calls a broken Defense Department procurement system.
Raytheon lands $30M 'Space Fence' deal
Yeah OK, they are using it to detect "space objects" only.
Raytheon Co. has landed $30 million from the U.S. Air Force for the design and prototype of the “Space Fence” — a project that is intended to provide the Air Force with improved space surveillance capability to detect and report space objects.
Raytheon taps Boeing exec for strategy position

Obama: I accept the responsibility
Clearly today's speech was a new strategy he got from David Plouffe who was on the airplane with him (and you liberals thought Karl Rove controlled "W"?).
Obama gets lukewarm Michigan welcome
The state that gave 54 percent of its vote to Barack Obama last November greeted his first return since the election with skepticism, doubt and anxiety about the future.

Obama, accompanied by his campaign manager, David Plouffe, on Air Force One, arrived Tuesday in this Detroit suburb, where one in five residents is unemployed, to face one of the most challenging audiences of his presidency.

Interview with President Obama

COOPER: On the economy, Joseph Biden the other day, Vice President Biden, said that -- that you misread the economy. You have said: "No, no, no. We had incomplete information."

And, nevertheless, you said that you would not have done anything differently. How -- that seems contradictory. How can you say that? If you had known that unemployment was going to 9.5 percent, would you -- wouldn't you have asked for more money in the stimulus?

OBAMA: It is not contradictory.

Dershowitz Falls For It: The "Compromise"
Ya gotta be soOOOooo smart to be this stupid, nu?

Sotomayor Pledges Stability as Trailblazing Justice
They will say whatever TF it takes to shut you up and make you let it go, tovarich.
Judge Sonia Sotomayor is portraying herself as a force for continuity with a reluctance to topple the established order even as she makes her case to become a barrier-breaking justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.
Grassley Says Colleagues 'Beating a Dead Horse to Death' on Sotomayor
See? And this is the guy who is suppossedly on "our side" ~

Sotomayor evades abortion, gun questions

Legalese in Sotomayor hearing explained

PMA Fresh Summit speakers include Condoleezza Rice & David Plouffe
They must to control your food supply. You will see.
Fresh Summit is the most widely-attended produce industry conference in the United States, attracting attendees from the entire produce supply chain. Business leaders from every segment of the produce industry come from all over the globe to convene at this event. With current economic tough times, it is now more important than ever to attend Fresh Summit to learn insightful information, proven tactics and strategies, inspiring new products and services, effective business solutions and make important new connections.
Medical School Says Former Army Surgeon Hid Ties to Medtronic
A former military doctor and Medtronic consultant at the center of a research scandal did not tell his medical school employer for a year about his Medtronic ties even as he was conducting company-sponsored research.
Harkin: GOP not needed to pass health bill
Iowa's Republican Charles Grassley says he has asked President Obama in a phone conversation to urge compromise that could bring GOP votes. Grassley would not specify which issue they discussed when Obama called him this week.
WH rolls out Medicare agency plan
Enjoy me while you can!

REASON ONLINE: Science Fiction 'Czar': The disturbing intellectual record of Obama's "Science Czar"
Dr. John Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy—better known as the "science czar"—has been a longtime prophet of environmental catastrophes. Never discouraged but never right.

And thanks to resourceful bloggers, you can read excerpts from a hard-to-find book co-authored by Holdren in the late 1970s, called Ecoscience: Population, Resources, Environment, online. In it, you will find the czar wading into some unpleasant talk about mass sterilizations and abortions.

It's not surprising. Holdren spent the '70s boogying down to the vibes of an imaginary population catastrophe and global cooling. He also participated in the famous wager between scientist Paul Ehrlich, the now-discredited Population Bomb theorist (and co-author of Ecoscience), and economist Julian Simon, who believed human ingenuity would overcome demand.
ALABAMA: How we will spend our Homeland Security Dollars
“The state divides the money into about five different funds,” said Marengo County Emergency Management Agency director Kevin McKinney. “The funds are for anything from the national stockpile program or the flu vaccination to the new Alabama Fusion Center in Montgomery to disseminate information to law enforcement, law enforcement funding, county funding and mutual aid teams."
Is Congress Failing on Homeland Security Oversight?

NJ's top cop named to elite US Homeland Security panel

Napolitano warns airport security jams ahead

Five Billion Dollah Gubbmint Pepco wants $254M more for smart meters
Pepco Holdings Inc. is seeking a total of $254 million in federal stimulus grants to upgrade its various utility systems in D.C., the mid-Atlantic and New Jersey. The grants, if approved, would come from the Department of Energy under the American Recovery and Revitalization Act Smart Grid Investment Grant Program. Pepco is seeking the largest funding for smart grid technology, $142 million, to help pay for advanced metering, distribution automation and direct load equipment in the District and Maryland.
Australia: Former rock star now environment minister approves uranium mine
That the former Midnight Oil leader singer and one-time leader of the Australian Conservation Foundation, Peter Garrett, approved the country’s latest environmentally dangerous uranium mine is not the latest news anymore.

What is though is that the mine will be owned by a subsidiary of one of the world’s biggest arms dealers, the Sydney Morning Herald reported this morning. The dealer, James Neal Blue, is also being linked to the development of drones being used by the US military in Afghanistan and Iraq and to the CIA financed contra guerrillas that fought Nicaragua’s Sandinista government during the 1980s. Garrett would have known all that given that the already operating Beverly mine is also owned by an affiliate to Mr Blue’s General Atomics.
Secretive arms tycoon behind new uranium mine
A colourful but reclusive billionaire named James Neal Blue, who helped devise the Predator unmanned aircraft being used in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, is a director of Quasar Resources - the company that will control the Four Mile mine. Quasar Resources is an affiliate of General Atomics, a US weapons and nuclear energy corporation which is chaired by Mr Blue, and reportedly holds $US700 million ($877 million) in Pentagon contracts. Mr Blue, 74, first came to prominence during the 1980s as a self-described "enthusiastic supporter" of US involvement in a covert war against the left-wing government in Nicaragua.

Utah board postpones vote on proposal to ban uranium storage

Uranium Hunter Buys Arizona Gold Property

Did you know Jaguars are back in Arizona?

They have been photographing them regularly since at least 2003.

THE NEW SCIENTIST: The Dawkins Dogma
THE notion of the "selfish gene" is the most successful scientific metaphor of the past 30 years, followed not far behind by "the extended phenotype". Both were coined by Richard Dawkins and are, as it happens, the titles of his first popular science books.
US Senate Committee Passes Pro-Abortion Health Care Bill
The Senate health committee approved legislation Wednesday that would expand insurance coverage to nearly all Americans but also would empower federal officials to mandate coverage of abortion on demand in virtually all health plans, according to critics.
Obama: Abortion is a 'health benefit'

Republicans protest Harry Reid's Hate crimes add-on
Republicans are protesting Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s move to attach a controversial hate-crimes proposal to a must-pass defense bill, but they may not have the votes to stop it.

In an effort to circumvent GOP opposition, the Nevada Democrat has proposed the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Act as an amendment to a $680 billion defense authorization bill. Reid is hoping for support from Republican Sens. Dick Lugar of Indiana, Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine, George Voinovich of Ohio and Judd Gregg of New Hampshire for legislation that would otherwise struggle to obtain a 60-vote majority as a stand-alone bill. On Wednesday, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) took to the floor to blast Reid’s move, calling it an “abuse of power.”

Christian life must be integrated, pope says
Integrated with what? This world?
Directly opposite to Jewsus' teachings.
Take off the big hat and repent before he comes to rip his name out of your mouth.

Pope Fractures His Wrist in a Fall

I didn't say a word. Not one word!

The Bible, book by book, "Old Testament"

Palestinian Furor Over Dead Sea Scrolls Exhibition
Crowds at the Royal Ontario Museum’s heavily hyped Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition — Dead Sea Scrolls: Words That Changed the World, which runs until January 3, 2010 — have far exceeded the museum’s own expectations. In the show’s first nine days, more than 18,000 people flocked to the museum’s spectacular new Daniel Libeskind-designed Michael Lee-Chin Crystal pavilion — about 52% above the exhibitors’ own projections.

But hosannas for the showing, featuring four scroll fragments on loan from the Israel Antiquities Authority and displayed in public for the first time, have not been universal. Last April, the Palestinian Authority appealed to Canada’s prime minister, Stephen Harper, to cancel the show, citing international conventions that make it illegal for a government agency to take archaeological artifacts from a territory that its country occupies.

Michael Reiss and John White: Atheism needs to be studied in schools
WTF else do they study in schools today you absolute jackoffs?

NYT: Eugenics Alert - Why We Must Ration Healthcare
Complete with screaming commie style signs.

You have advanced kidney cancer. It will kill you, probably in the next year or two. A drug called Sutent slows the spread of the cancer and may give you an extra six months, but at a cost of $54,000. Is a few more months worth that much?
River in South Iceland Switches Channels
According to measurements, the western branch of Skeidará river in south Iceland seems to have stopped flowing in its usual channel at 2 am on Monday and switched over to the Gígjukvísl river channel.
Massive Earthquake Shakes New Zealand
There have been over 12 aftershocks of 5.0 or better since.

New Zealand Earthquake Detected In Columbus

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