And that is all.

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Floatin' Powa News Service: Brave Gnu, Whirled.


Lebanese army on alert after reported IDF build-up along border
Tension mounted Monday in southern Lebanon after Israeli forces reportedly advanced to the area of the Shaba farms, forcing the Lebanese army on alert, a Lebanese army source said. The source said three armored Israeli vehicles, accompanied by a civilian car, advanced towards Shaba Farms, located at the junction of south-east Lebanon, south-west Syria and northern Israel.
Jumblat: I Alone Am 'Entitled' to Set a Date for Syria Visit
Yeah, see! And tonight he gonna Mahdi like it's 799! So STFU!
"At the same time there is a need to press ranks closely together in the face of any new Israeli assaults and for the state and resistance to be prepared for any new development in this domain," he added. Jumblat said that the "principle of national partnership alone eliminates the political barricades."
Cyber-activism spreading fast in Syria
Increasing internet use in Syria has allowed young people to circumvent restrictions on forming pressure groups, despite official action to rein them in.
Jailed Palestinian wins top Fatah post
Palestinian politician Marwan Barghouthi, serving a life sentence in an Israeli jail, was elected to a leading post in President Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction on Tuesday, initial results showed. Barghouthi was jailed on charges of organizing the killing of Israelis. He denies the charges. Fatah elected a new top executive body with members of the "Old Guard" losing their positions, the initial results showed after more than 90 percent of votes had been counted. Abbas has said the party, holding its first congress in 20 years, needed to show disillusioned voters a new beginning.

Minister Braverman wants Barghouti freed to 'strengthen moderates'
Braverman New World! Moderately Judenrein!
Minister for Minority Affairs Avishay Braverman said the government "must seriously consider releasing Marwan Barghouti from Israeli prison". "In light of the results of the Fatah Congress elections we must consider his release in order to create a strong moderate political leadership for the Palestinians," he said. "Barghouti will probably be able to bolster the moderate faction that supports an agreement with Israel."
The Arab World Makes Way for the Muslim World
In the video embedded in the article Azmi Bishara, an Arab member of the Israeli Knesset speaks openly about the fact that there was never a Palestinian nation/people (Ummah Palestini) only an Arab nation (Ummah Arabi).
US Targets Afghan Drug Lords Tied to Taliban
Not to keep you safe, Tovarich. Not to make the world free. We do this simply because we wish to be the drug lords now.

U.S.-built bridge is windfall for Afghan drug trade
"You can give your bag of heroin to one of the guards, and he will carry it across for you."
The Obama administration is considering whether to pay off Afghan farmers to stop them from growing heroin poppies on contract for the Taliban, senior officials said Tuesday

Pentagon establishes special cell to focus on Pak, Afghan conflict
A new war room focusing entirely on the conflicts in Afghanistan and Pakistan sits deep inside a cavernous basement of Pentagon. This cell has become a visible symbol of how much the related conflicts have become US Chiefs of Joint Staff Chairman Admiral Mike Mullen’s war, according to the Los Angeles Times. Created by Admiral Mullen, the Pakistan Afghanistan Coordination Cell is intended to bring together the Pentagon’s top strategy and intelligence experts. Stripped of cubicle walls and lined with desks, the cavernous room with fluorescent lights looks something like an old-style newsroom or steno pool.

“Admiral Mullen understands the Pentagon has to change from planning wars to fighting them,” said Major General Michael T Flynn, who served as Mullen’s intelligence officer, then joined the command in Afghanistan. The intent is to draw in experts on Afghanistan from all the military services as well as civilians who have experience in that country and expertise on Afghan politics, the insurgency, narcotics and other issues. The initiative will create a bench of experts who will eventually rotate back and forth between the US and Afghanistan. Brigadier General Scott Miller, head of the coordination cell, said, “Mullen understands it is going to take his personal involvement if we are not going to just do business as usual.”

Taliban still a major threat 8 years later
Blossomed, even! Like a Poppy!
The Taliban insurgency has blossomed in northern Afghan provinces such as Kunduz and Baghlan, long considered some of the safest territory in the country. And just 20 miles east of Kabul, Taliban "judges" operate openly in the back of pickup trucks, settling legal disputes between villagers in makeshift "mobile courts."
Gunmen Storm Government Buildings Near Kabul

Karzai invites Taliban to talk despite city attack

Karzai to make reconciliation with anti-gov't militants

Karzai leading in Afghan voter survey

Iran Purges Intelligence Ministry Officials
The shake-up at the Intelligence Ministry - the nation's main spy agency - deepened the rifts straining Iran's conservative ranks over Ahmadinejad's strong-arm political tactics and the crushing response to the pro-reform opposition since the June 12 election. It also sought to bolster Ahmadinejad allies in the Revolutionary Guard, which led the assaults and arrests against protesters who claimed the election was rigged. But now officials from other groups, including the police and judiciary, say abuses occurred and have called for investigations into the deaths and alleged torture.
Iranian Officials Call for Arrest of Opposition Leaders

Iran Opposition Figure Says Detainees Were Raped in Prison
I had reported on this weeks ago - legally they are not allowed to execute virgins so they rape them first. Hamas also does this and I am certain so do many Islamic Jihadists. Rape is a well utilized weapon of war.
Iran rejects Obamanable's September deadline for nuclear negotiations
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Hassan Qashqavi, said on Monday that Tehran was open to talks on its nuclear program, but rejected any deadline for such negotiations. The Obama administration has said that it expects Iran to respond to its offer of nuclear negotiations by the time the United Nations General Assembly meeting takes place in late September.

“The Iranian nation welcomes talks and engagement within the framework of its national interest,” Qashqavi told reporters in Tehran. “We are serious in our pursuit of our nuclear rights and will not accept any limitation” on the timeline for negotiations, he added.
Iran floats northern oil shares
The Iranian government has sanctioned the privatization of as much as 80 percent of the rights to oil exploration in the territorial waters of the Caspian Sea. The Iran Privatization Organization, a division of the Ministry of Economy, was tasked with privatizing the exploration of oil in the north of Iran and in the territorial waters of the Caspian Sea. Ali Kardar, the head of a privatization committee at the National Iranian Oil Co., said the NIOC delegated the rights to sell 80 percent of the Northern Exploration Co. to the privatization organization.
Militant cleric returns to Yemen

Watching The World: The extravagant allegation club
No one in the oil and gas industry is immune to extravagant allegations, as evidenced by one court case after another. This time, China National Petroleum Corp. is the target.

CNPC helicopters visited camps of the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) to provide logistical and medical support, according to a former hostage who escaped from the guerrillas.

The CNPC helicopters transported “doctors, medicine, provisions, and even guerrillas,” according to former Sen. Oscar Tulio Lizcano, who was kidnapped on Aug. 5, 2000, and escaped in 2008.Tulio Lizcaino told Spanish news agency EFE that the CNPC helicopters visited FARC camps seven times in 2006 “paradoxically, when the area was under military siege and President (Alvaro) Uribe’s democratic security (policy) was in full force.”
Chevron seeks to boost Angola's economy in deal with USAID
Yes tovarich, their motives are purely humanitarian and altruistic!

India Seizes 'Suspicious' N.Korean Ship

India To Open Uranium Mines And Increase Nuclear Power Capacity

Hitchens sees what I saw:
The two young women were picked up in March and released in August. That means they spent almost half a year in the North Korean prison system. Yet to judge by the photographs of them arriving back on U.S. soil, they were in approximately the same physical condition as they had been when they were first unlawfully apprehended.

Now, I spent less time than that as an honored guest in North Korea and still managed to lose weight during my stay. The shattering statistic that everybody now knows about North Korea is that its citizens are on average 5 to 6 inches shorter than South Koreans. And by that I mean to say "on average"—it seems to be true even of North Korean soldiers.

The stunting and shortening of the children of the last famine generation may be still more heartbreaking when we come to measure it. And the fate of those who are in the North Korean gulag can, by this measure, only be imagined. There is a starvation regime within the wider nightmare of the slave system. Yet Ling and Lee had obviously not been maltreated or emaciated in the usual way that even a North Korean civilian, let alone a North Korean prisoner, could expect to be.

The logical corollary of this is obvious. The Kim Jong-il gang was always planning to release them. They were arrested in order to be let go and were maintained in releasable shape until the deal could be done.
Russian military base court secretary murdered in Tajikistan
Russian military base court secretary Yevgeniya Shevronskaya was murdered in Tajikistan. Body of Russian citizen with marks of violent death was found on August 7 near Dushanbe, ITAR-TASS reported with reference to Tajik MIA.
Criminal case was opened upon the fact of murder of 44-year-old Shevronskaya, circumstances of the death of which have not been established yet. Investigation officers consider various versions of given crime, as domestic ones, so those connected with professional activity of garrison court secretary.

Neither of them was adopted as a main one for now. Body of Shevronskaya was found in Rudaki district, next to military town which is a place of location of Dushanbe garrison of 201 Russian military base. Russian Embassy in Tajikistan representatives have already made a statement that they cooperate with force structures of the republic in frames of investigation of given crime.
OSCE bureau employee died in Tajikistan
OSCE bureau employee on border management Cheslav Belyavskii tragically died on Sunday in Kharangon district (20 km to the north of Dushanbe) falling down from the mountain in Tajikistan.

The accident took place when Belyavskii was giving a private lesson of mountain climbing to six employees of international organizations and embassies accredited in Tajikistan, MIA reported. He fell down from 25-meter height and died from received injuries. Body of Belyavskii will be sent to his homeland - Poland. He was working in OSCE bureau in Tajikistan since April 2009.

Tajikistan: Police kill suspected Islamist militant
"During the operation aimed at detaining IMU activist Lutfullo Tursunov he opened fire from a Kalashnikov assault rifle," said the official, who asked not to be named."The special forces (police unit) had to return fire and (Tursunov) was fatally wounded," he said.
National Melon holiday marked in Turkmenistan!
Everyone loves Glorious Turkmen Melons Day!
A ceremony of awarding the winners of the traditional competition "Golden Melon of the Golden Age" was held in Turkmenistan. It was timed to the national holiday - Turkmen Melon Day, which is celebrated in the country on the second Sunday of August. Twenty five best melon-growers and scientists were awarded valuable gifts and diplomas on behalf of Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.

The musical center "Ashgabat" in the National Park of Independence was the center of celebrations, the correspondent reports from Ashgabat. Best musical ensembles of Turkmenistan performed for the public, and an outdoor exhibition of achievements of agriculture and various branches of the processing industry of Turkmenistan was held. A special place at the exhibition was set aside for elite varieties of melons, watermelons and pumpkins that were grown by the winners of "Golden Melon of the Golden Age" competition.

President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov conveyed greetings to the participants of celebrations and the people of Turkmenistan. The message of the head of state was read out to the participants. "Turkmen melon is a fruit that has no matches by its taste. This is all because of the fact that it is imbued with the fertility of our land, the taste of our water, each drop of which is equal to gold, the heat of our sun, our clean air, and most importantly - dedicated, conscientious work of our brave farmers," the message reads.
CNPC Deal for Kazakh Oil Firm Delayed

Kyrgyzstan Uighur leaders detained after protest
Kyrgyzstan's police detained two Uighur community leaders after they accused China of "state terrorism" at a rally on Monday and called for an independent investigation of last month's clashes in neighbouring Xinjiang. About 500 Uighurs gathered at a building on the outskirts of the Kyrgyz capital Bishkek with photographs posted to the walls showing what they said was abuse of their kinfolk in China. The pictures portrayed people being beaten up and held at gunpoint as well as unconscious or dead people lying in the streets.
Kyrgyzstan's Ombudsman Secures Uyghur Releases

German bomb plot suspect confesses in court
The State Department says that group was responsible for coordinated bombings outside the US and Israeli embassies in Uzbekistan in July 2004
Soviet Ekranoplan - Caspian Sea Monster
I found that Volga Shipyard is still producing this huge ground-effect vehicles, with new vigor after the end of the Cold War. I found that few of them could be seen even from Google Earth. For people who are not familiar with, the story begun when Americans saw Ekranoplan in Caspian Sea from the satellites. Since they didn't have a clue what this 100m long extra-fast steel thing was, they called it Caspian Sea Monster.

Young Belarusian Killed When Lenin Statue Falls On Him
Glorious Comrade Lenin participates in 21st Century Revolution from beyond the grave!
HOMEL, Belarus -- A 21-year-old man from the southeastern Belarusian town of Uvaravichy in Belarus was killed when a piece of a statue to Soviet founder Vladimir Lenin fell on him as he tried to climb it, RFE/RL's Belarus Service reports. Early this morning, the unnamed man climbed atop the seven-meter monument and tried to hang from Lenin's famous outstretched arm. The upper portion of the statue collapsed, injuring the man. He reportedly died in the ambulance on the way to a hospital in the nearby city of Homel.
Russia Looks To Bolster Nuclear Capability in 2010

Nashi Looks to Expand Youth Militia
The plan to fill Russia’s streets with 100,000 young militiamen by 2010 has been all over the Russian internet media over the last few weeks. And as usual the thought of the Russian government recruiting and deploying youth to monitor the streets has many shaking in their boots. Perhaps for good reason. The Russian police are already known for their corruption. Having a potential army of 100,000 youths “protecting” the streets certainly doesn’t provide much comfort.

The militia plan, which was announced at this year’s Seliger camp, will allow Nashi to form an All-Russian Association of Militias before the end of the year. Nashi has had a youth militia program in the works since 2007. The All-Russian version will incorporate the Nashi DMD and place the militias directly under the local police. Former Nashi founder and chairman of Russia’s Youth Affairs Council Vasili Yakemenko will appeal to the government for “start-up funds” and local administrative support. Advocates for the initiative are hoping to pass some version of the law “On the participation of RF citizens in securing law and order” which has been sitting in the Duma for a few years despite MVD sponsorship.


Russia accuses US of rearming Georgia
Would that we were.
Russia on Wednesday accused the United States of quietly rearming Georgia a year after Russian forces crushed the ex-Soviet state's US-backed military and warned it would respond accordingly. "Delivery of weapons from the United States is continuing," Deputy Foreign Minister Grigori Karasin told journalists at a briefing ahead of the first anniversary of the 2008 Russia-Georgia war. "This is worrisome and will force us to take corresponding measures," Karasin said. He did not elaborate on what types of weapons were involved or on how Russia would respond.

His comments however marked one of Moscow's most pointed accusations that the United States, which recently reaffirmed a strategic commitment to Georgia, was stoking tensions in the volatile Caucasus region. On a visit to Tbilisi on July 23, US Vice President Joe Biden admitted that Washington, which equipped and trained Georgian forces prior to the war last August, was working on "maintaining" the Georgian military. He said however that the effort was confined to "planning, training, organization" — and not the supply of weapons. The following day, Russia's ambassador to NATO said Moscow would impose sanctions on US or any other foreign firms that sold arms to Georgia. "No one can give us any guarantee there will be no new aggression from Georgia," Karasin said at the press conference Wednesday.

A top Russian general separately said Russia could "clearly see" that Georgia was rearming and trying to rebuild its armed forces "to previous levels and higher" than what it had prior to last year's war. The general, Anatoly Nogovitsin, said this effort was "for the purpose of aggression" and was being supported by the United States and other Western countries at least financially and through "declarations" of support. "This is being done not as openly as in the past … but using a clandestine scheme," Nogovitsin said, adding: "Such supplies are still continuing." The secretary of Georgia's national security council, Eka Tkeshelashvili, dismissed Russia's accusations that Georgia was rearming as a "ridiculous perception" concocted in Moscow to foster a "myth" of Georgian aggression.

The United States has long supported the goal of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili to lead his country away from its centuries-old dominance by Moscow and toward membership in NATO and Western political institutions. The Kremlin however has made clear — most dramatically during the war in Georgia last year — that it regards expanding NATO influence in ex-Soviet states near Russian borders as a major and direct security threat. Russia and the West are in intensifying competition for influence in Georgia due to its vital location astride a geographical corridor that could be used to transport energy supplies from Central Asia directly to Western markets. Late Tuesday, Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev discussed the situation in the Caucasus as the Georgia war anniversary approaches, with both men agreeing on the need to reduce tensions there, the White House said.

Russia, Serbia,Kosovo, and Albanians
Oh my!

Cyber attack makes anti-Russia blogger a star

Hacked blogger seeks Russia probe

Ramzan Kadyrov's Evolving Political Credo
In many respects, however, the vision Kadyrov outlines of the kind of polity he wants Chechnya to become, its relations with the federal center, and his own role as republic head is consistent. He defines Chechnya as "a federal subject like any other" and as "an integral part of Russia," not as a "state within a state," and says he sees "no sense in a division of powers between the republic and the federal center."

Kadyrov has publicly rejected the prospect of Chechnya becoming a sovereign state, on the grounds that it is too small to survive as such given the high birthrate and the lack of any natural resources except oil, which will run out one day, "and then what shall I [sic] do as a separate state?"

At the same time, he clearly perceives the relationship between Chechnya and Moscow as entitling Chechnya to unlimited subsidies from the federal budget -- plus the revenues from the oil extracted on its territory -- with a minimum of reciprocal responsibilities. Chechnya should, Kadyrov has argued repeatedly, again become a multiethnic and multiconfessional republic. To that end, he has vowed to try to persuade all ethnic groups -- not just Chechens, but Russians, Kumyks and others who fled during the fighting of 1994-96 and 1999-2000 -- to return.
Turkey signs deal with Russia to build reactor near Black Sea

Eli Lilly (LLY) NewsBite - LLY Downgraded By Goldman Sachs
Lily is on the outs.

Merck shares rise on Goldman Sachs 'Buy' rating

But Merck is in with the in crowd.
Betcha I know why....

MERCK is in!
As swine flu vaccines remain on the horizon and H1N1 vaccination distribution is likely to begin in the middle of October, the Pneumovax solution could offer a viable alternative.

"The vaccine, made by Merck & Co., stimulates the body's ability to neutralize the bacteria responsible for many cases of pneumonia, and it has the potential to prevent an estimated one-third of pneumonia deaths linked to swine flu," the LA Times reported.
LILY is out!
If Americans want to take on Lilly, they might want to do it during a time when the Bush family is out of power. Sidney Taurel, former Lilly CEO and George W. Bush appointee to the Homeland Security Advisory Council, is not the only Bush family-Lilly connection. George Herbert Walker Bush once sat on the Eli Lilly board of directors, as did Bush family crony Ken Lay, the Enron chief convicted of fraud before his death. Mitch Daniels, George W. Bush's first-term Director of Management and Budget, had actually been a Lilly vice president, and in 1991 he had co-chaired a Bush-Quayle fundraiser that collected $600,000. This is the same Mitch Daniels who is now governor of Indiana, Lilly's home state.
US Stocks Retreat on Valuations; Disney, Eli Lilly Decline

Crime & Federalism: Hank Paulson and Goldman Sachs Are RICO Enterprises
All of this happened under GWB. Please... do not forget that.
Paulson clearly violated his duties to American taxpayers when he transferred billions of dollars of wealth to Goldman Sachs under false pretenses; when he lied to Congress in order to obtains hundreds-of-billions of dollars in TARP funds; when he conspired with Goldman Sachs to "save" A.I.G. for Goldman's sake; and whe he lied to Congress about his role in "saving" A.I.G.
Goldman back in court over code theft

Three more US banks collapse
US regulators closed another three banks last Friday: First State Bank and Community National Bank, based in Florida, and Oregon’s Community First Bank. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) is expected to pay out $185 million to cover closure costs and insured deposits for the three institutions. A total of 72 US banks have collapsed so far this year, up from 25 in all of 2008 and three in 2007.
Co-Treasury Secretary Lloyd Blankfein?

Major US and European airlines renew their interest in fuel hedging

Sector Snap: Airlines fall as oil prices rise

Tick tock to the nationalization of the aerospace industry

Oil climbs above $71 ahead of US retail reports

Higher oil prices 'boost Gulf fiscal outlook'
In other news: FIRE HOT! BURNS!

Gas prices jump 15 cents in 2 weeks

China's 10 Biggest Automakers Link Up to Develop Electric Cars

Electric Car's Connection to Goldman Sachs

Goldman Sachs raises Asia, China GDP forecasts

Obama's Dissident Database Could Be Secret ~ and Permanent
"So the White House, whether by design or accident, has requested information from the public that will become 'records' under the Presidential Records Act, yet would be impermissible for any government to otherwise collect under the Privacy Act," writes one Judiciary Committee source. "Where were the lawyers in all of this? What is their legal basis for authorizing the collection of these records?"

Linda Douglass, head of communications for the White House Office of Health Reform, says the White House is "not compiling lists or sources of information" on opponents of health care reform. But if "fishy" information is indeed collected, as Phillips' request suggested, the laws involved mean that the information obtained by the White House could not only be secret but permanent. A dissident database, in whatever precise form it ultimately takes, could be around for a long time to come.
ICE and DOJ Sign Agreements to Share Information
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) signed two Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) on Thursday, Aug. 6, 2009, to foster increased communication between participating agencies at the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Fusion Center and the International Organized Crime Intelligence and Operations Center (IOC-2).

"The OCDETF Fusion Center and IOC-2 are founded on the principle that we can accomplish more together than we can separately," said Deputy Attorney General David W. Ogden. "By bringing together the agencies and personnel with existing resources and expertise we can work more effectively as partners to shut down organized crime networks, seize assets and save taxpayer dollars in the process. This agreement, coupled with recent agreements between ICE, DEA and ATF will allow new levels of cooperation and intelligence sharing."

UK: Hundreds of snoopers assault our privacy
If you ever get the feeling you are being snooped on, it is probably because you are. We reveal today that the police, local councils and a host of other public bodies are making more than 1,000 requests a day – over half a million a year – to examine our telephone records or to find out to whom we are sending emails. That is the equivalent of one adult in every 78 being spied upon. This level of surveillance would be familiar to the stasi in the old East Germany but in a liberal democracy that prides itself on its freedoms, it is deeply troubling.
Crews Responding to Portsmouth HazMat Situation
BC 6 News has learned eight people are being treated and decontaminated after coming in contact with an unknown substance Monday night. The incident happened just before 8:30 pm Monday, at Raytheon, a defense technology company in Portsmouth, RI.

Crews from East Providence and Newport responded to assist in the decontamination of those involved. No details about the type of substance, or the symptoms those being treated have experienced, are being released at this time. Though, after full decontamination, three of the people exposed to the substance may be transported to Newport Hospital.

8 exposed to hazardous substance at Raytheon in Portsmouth

Raytheon looks to expand

DARPA Extends COSMOS Contract
IQE reports that it will be taking part in a US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) contract led by Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems.

Top DHS Cyber-Security Official Resigns
The director of the Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) has resigned, several media outlets reported over the weekend. Mischel Kwon is leaving the post after less than a year, and will soon take a job in the private sector, The Washington Post reports. The newspaper cited anonymous sources who said she was "frustrated by bureaucratic obstacles and a lack of authority to fulfill her mission." She was the fourth director of U.S.-CERT in the last five years.
Troops' use of anti-depressants merits some serious study
There is no denying that soldiers in the field are under great stress, and one of the ways the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) has dealt with that stress is to dispense strong anti-depressant medications to soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.
I want a close examination of how these anti-depressants are prescribed and managed in-theater and what impact they may be having on our soldiers.
World diplomats to converge on US heartland state of Iowa
Other embassies represented will include those of Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Republic of Congo, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, France, Georgia, Germany, and Guatemala.Hungary, India, Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, South Korea, Laos, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mali, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Nepal, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, and Singapore are also sending someone.

The list also groups Slovak Republic, Slovenia, South Africa, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Trinidad & Tobago, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Vietnam, and Yemen. Iowa draws the national spotlight at least once every four years, when US presidential hopefuls converge on the state for its first-in-the-nation caucus.
Ex-homeless woman leaves $150,000 to Hebrew University
A Jewish Holocaust survivor who later lived on the streets of New York City has left half of her $300,000 estate to Hebrew University, the school said Monday.
"It moved us very much," university spokesman Yefet Ozery said in a telephone interview from Jerusalem, where the school is based."Hebrew University has many, many donors and benefactors and supporters and many people remember us in their will, but I haven't come across such a person that lived actually as a poor woman who would give half of her bequest to Hebrew University," Ozery said.

The woman, who died two years ago in her 90s, has not been identified publicly at the request of her estate's executor, he said."He didn't want her name to be remembered as a homeless" person, Ozery said.The woman, who had no known relatives, survived a concentration camp and was living on the streets of New York's Upper West Side several years ago when a Jewish accountant befriended her, Ozery said."He and his wife adopted her pretty much to their home and supplied her with basic needs," which included finding her public housing, he said.

In return, the woman moved the couple's car from one side of the street to the other so that it would not be ticketed, he said. At the time, they had no clue to her net worth, Ozery said."When the woman told him and his wife that she would be leaving a will, they thought to themselves that there would be nothing there because they knew her as owning nothing," he said.It was only when the woman died that the couple learned of her wealth, which she had kept in a bank."They were very surprised to find out that she left this amount and that half of it went to Hebrew University," Ozery said.How she accumulated the money, the balance of which went to other causes and to her friends, is not known, he said.
Why has the press ignored the case of Pervert Duke U. official?
In late June, FBI agents along with Durham police officers arrested associate director of Duke's Center for Health Policy Frank M. Lombard, 42, on child molestation charges. Lombard is accused of inviting another man to travel to North Carolina in order to molest his adopted 5-year-old son.

The other man, turned out to be a police officer posing as an online predator. Allegedly, on at least three occasions Lombard could be seen via webcam performing oral sex , and other sex acts on his adopted son.

Apparently, Lombard had allowed other individuals to molest the child as well. Lombard is alleged to have told the undercover investigator, that he had performed several sex acts on the 5-year-old and that he could have his way with the child if he flew to the Raleigh/Durham area. Lombard even provided the detective with a recommendation for a hotel.

In 2007, an unknown internet user filed a complaint against Lombard for similar activities. In a sworn affidavit, that user claimed Lombard said he "was into incest" and had adopted two black children. At the time of his arrest, the chat transcripts were released which show Lombard being asked how he has access to the little boy, to which Lombard simply replies: "Adopted."

He went on to describe the adoption process as "not so hard ... especially for a black boy."

Lombard also told the investigator that molesting the child was "easier when he was too young to know what was happening and when he couldn't talk ...He had a little too much Benadryl. Was knocked out." Lombard is in jail awaiting trial. Last week, the university quietly fired him. Despite the incredibly disturbing nature of this crime, the press has failed to cover the story.

White House tells agencies, think 'open innovation'
The White House is telling its agencies to pursue an "open innovation"-approach to government, be visionary in their spending requests, and focus on "transformative" projects that help the climate, energy, life expectancy and the economy.
U.S. "religious left" wades into healthcare fight
All hail the Popes of Laodicea
Liberal religious groups announced on Monday they are teaming up with President Barack Obama in a national campaign to counter the surprisingly vehement conservative opposition to his plan for overhaul of the U.S. healthcare industry this year. Organized by liberal-leaning evangelicals, some mainline Protestant clergy, and some Catholic groups, it will include Obama participating in a call-in program with religious leaders streamed on the Internet on August 19, prayer meetings and nationwide television ads. "As a pastor I believe access to healthcare is a profoundly moral issue," Rev. Stevie Wakes of Olivet Institutional Baptist in Kansas City, said in a news teleconference announcing the "40 days for Health Reform" campaign.

Pope prays for Shriver

Sadly she drops dead anyway

Heads of other faiths to meet Pope
These "5 faiths" are so far unspecified.
Representatives of five non-Christian faiths will meet with Pope Benedict XVI during his first U.S. visit as pontiff next month. The 45-minute event on April 17 at the Pope John Paul II Cultural Center in Washington will include a papal address, greetings from the faith leaders and a presentation of gifts symbolic of each tradition by young members of the respective communities. There will be no formal dialogue among participants because of time constraints on the pope's schedule, said Sister Mary Ann Walsh, spokeswoman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Tensions high over plans for uranium mill
Paradox Valley: ground zero for resurgence...
PARADOX - Frank Schneider can sit in his living room and look out over his field of triticale - a barley and wheat hybrid - and see the herds of deer that munch on the crops. The view to the east is a broad panorama of the green valley floor flanked by rust-colored cliffs that glow in the sunset. "It's like a light show every day," Schneider said.

The name of the 25-mile-long Paradox Valley comes from the contradictory behavior of the Dolores River. Instead of running down the length of the valley as most rivers, it cuts the valley perpendicularly; entering out of the cliffs from the south and back into the cliffs on the north. From above, it gives the valley the look of a science-fair diorama built by a third-grader who hasn't quite learned how geography works.
Speak up against uranium mill in Montrose
Energy Fuels will seek at an Aug. 13 hearing in Nucla a conditional use permit for constructing at Bedrock — a mill to process uranium ore. Should the permit be granted, there is proximate potential for great harm to Grand Junction and other areas of our region. The application for the permit is in direct contradiction to the Montrose County Master Plan, which prohibits heavy industry use, and more specifically that connected to toxic materials, in a zone reserved for agriculture.

It is in violation of the necessary condition of proven economic feasibility. It contains none of the impact studies which are required preliminary to submitting of such an application. The site is astride a fault line in an area of seismic activity. Should the mill be built it could not profit from the low-grade ore in the area. It would have to appeal to taxpayer subsidy or solicit toxic waste material from other sites, in or out of state.
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